Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: 32 on August 13, 2018, 08:01:53 am

Title: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: 32 on August 13, 2018, 08:01:53 am

This is a boss for the project I've been working on. It was difficult to get it to appear that she is glowing in the limits of the style, which is mostly concerned with being easy to animate. Especially the way in which she lights the non glowing aspects of the design has given me trouble. The large grey pieces of armour I wanted to look like stone but I wasn't able to come up with a satisfying way to render them. It is intended to be shown on a fairly dark background, mid tones and darker. The effect on her back is meant to look like a glowing beam of light. As she fights these beams would solidify into metal spikes which she would then throw as part of the battle design.

Any thoughts are welcome! I may not be able to implement all critiques on style for this character as there is existing art to match but any comments about how I can improve are appreciated  ;D

Edit: It occurs to me that the second set of arms may be difficult to read. I should definitely come up with a better idle pose for her. That's what those lower dark orange parts are if anyone can't tell.
Title: Re: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: pistachio on August 13, 2018, 08:34:08 am
Style is one of the strong points, unfortunately design is the weaker one. Looks like it could be good, it's an interesting idea, but it's not immediately reading at this size. I just see kind of this mess of rock and yellow magma (edit: energy), rocky arms/legs and yellow hands/torso, and a woman's head. I'm seeing more here as I type this, but it's what you see at first glance that matters. That's what players see. Maybe readability is better when animated but this isn't a good sign.

If you can show the art it'd be great, if not I'll edit working off the sprite.



After squinting at this I saw a mecha girl made of light floating in a pimped-out mecha suit, so that's what I went with. But if I got it wrong by all means correct me.

If it's only on a dark background, sel-out to your heart's content.

More spikes. You have a motif, use it. It's a boss, so if the motif factors into gameplay, there's a functional need to know that. (See Megaman. Actually, see most boss battles.) Take it up to 11.

Changed some palette entries to reflect the energy theme, so made them hotter (you can leave that pun...)


EDIT: On the downside, ninja'd, on the upside, got it right :D
Title: Re: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: 32 on August 13, 2018, 09:14:00 am
Not a good sign that you're finding it so hard to read. I can definitely see how it's difficult to pick up on first glance. Definitely hoping animation will assist me to a degree but I don't want to rely on it. Essentially the idea is that it is a woman made of light, suspended in a type of mech suit. Her arms go into the front arms of the mech, while the rear arms are attached on her back. Unfortunately don't have any art of this exact design other than this as I tweaked it a bit to fit everything into the pixels but here is a bit of progress and a shot without the mech suit that might help to see what's supposed to be going on.

Title: Re: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: Rydin on August 13, 2018, 03:14:01 pm
If she was made of light, her light would be reflecting all over the surrounding surface.
The intensity of these reflections are based on the the surface of the material.
Metal is high gloss and reflects light nearly perfectly.
Stone is less gloss and a more diffuse surface.
Such reflections are blurred and dull.
Light on stone is very soft.
But this will be harder to animate (and doesn't read well)
So maybe just shift what should be black to the color of the reflected metal?
Title: Re: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: 32 on August 17, 2018, 11:11:30 pm
Haven't had a chance to go into this all the way yet but I wanted to give a quick update and respond to the feedback  ;D


Decided to go back and look more heavily at the pose and see how that would inform the design of the suit. I think having the upper arms detached from her actual arms is going to be a lot easier to manage in the end, so she won't have a conflict between short upper arms and long/thick forearms. I want her to have a bit of a kickboxer type thing going on so I've started going that direction with the stance. The lower arms are meant to be primarily for defence, I'm somewhat concerned that they're going to make the pose less dynamic. My initial plan was to have them crossed over the body like a shield so I may explore that a bit more in the future.

pistachio: Thank you so much for the edit! It looks amazing and has given me heaps of inspiration for how to do the rendering. I like the way you made the non glowing parts very dark, I think that's the right move, it gives a sense that she's so bright it changes the exposure level at which you see her. I also love the push toward spikeyness, her hair looks great! I really just threw the hairstyle together so I will take a closer look at that as well. And having all four spikes really visible is a really obvious thing I should have been doing, considering the player will need that information.

Rydin: Thank you ;D Having her glow onto the armour was also my first thought but I came up against the same issue that it was kind of hard to read and difficult to animate. I'm definitely going to push harder for the stone look when I get to that stage again and I will see if there's some way I can incorporate the lighting onto the suit, I'm thinking maybe harsh rim lights. I might lean on the fact that I have a dark background and not be so precious about the idea of having outlines.

Title: Re: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: 32 on March 02, 2019, 06:04:58 am
Finally got around to working on this again, it's only been 7 months :crazy:


Sorry for the very slow implementation but your edit helped massively pistachio, thanks again!
Title: Re: Light Elemental Boss
Post by: falz on March 03, 2019, 12:27:31 am
Wow, those hands are fantastic! And the pose shows much more movement. I can imagine all the limbs and body all moving a little out of sync as she bobs up and down.

For criticism, I'm finding the details in her actual arms are pretty lost in the mech suit's arms/hands. Maybe she could just have her arms folded while she is controlling the mech arms?