Critique => Pixel Art => Topic started by: Orbs on January 07, 2020, 04:43:17 am

Title: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on January 07, 2020, 04:43:17 am
Hello everyone, I'm new here. I'm actually a 3D artist in life, so pixel art is kinda new to me. This is I guess my first attempt at that art so I'm here to get some feedbacks, maybe ideas, or tips that could help me. Or generally how it feels, what works, what doesn't.

I while ago I had a game in mind, something along the lines of an action survival rpg, heavily story driven (fallout 1-2 style). Obviously I could've go for a 3d look, but I like the speed and flexibility pixel art gives me but also the retro look. I started this little scene as a test of how the game could look like.

The zombie is a bit temp, I made him to test aseprite that I bought recently (his animation is ultra fast haha XD) But I'm also curious about how I could improve readability, colors etc.

Thank you!


here's the zombie a bit slower  :lol:
Title: Re: isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on January 14, 2020, 12:42:47 am
is this post working?...
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on April 06, 2020, 11:13:00 pm
here's a bit my process for now, for the character:

I started testing two different scales, I went with the smaller dude (easier to handle in the long run)
then I made a 3/4 front view, that I can use as a guide to make a quick 3D model
this was my first pass, once I had a 3dmodel, I used it to redraw my character proportions, this is how he looked in my first test
I didn't quite like his head been so low, so I reworked the 3d model, and also tilted the head to look up more.
I ended up with this 3D model that I now use to make my Rotoscoping.

so this is how the "3d model" at the bottom left and spinning, compares to my original drawing (at the top). I'm quite happy with it, I think it capture my initial drawing pretty close. I'd be curious to know what you think about the turntuble, I feel like his head isn't perfect yet
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Chris2balls on April 07, 2020, 11:36:06 am
Really great work so far, and that 3D to pixel art workflow's going to be so helpful with the perspective.

Only critique is a bit more contrast for the details on the characters, for instance the nose. Keep us posted on progress  ;D

Ah et tu es français ? Bienvenue  :)
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: falz on April 07, 2020, 05:14:50 pm
The 3D to 2D is an interesting workflow but I think it should be limited as a pixel-by-pixel guide. For instance, I am not fond of the long vertical lines and the side of the torso and the right leg. I prefer those areas on the older version. The perspective on the head does look improved though. Maybe use some selective outlining techniques to accentuate a curve in the leg?
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: heyguy on April 13, 2020, 05:13:54 am
Looks great! I feel the old 3/4 character looks a bit better than the new one. The stance seems more dynamic. The angle of the face is "correct" but with the old character, the face had potential for more detailed expressions.

For the zombie, maybe give him a more colorful outfit if readability is a problem. I gave him a yellow shirt and I thought it looked good. Other zombie models could have a variety of hair colors. Blonde, blue, red, white stick out to me.
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on April 16, 2020, 08:01:26 am
Hello, here's some progress, just to be clear because all these pics could be confusing.

this is the original I had, next to the "polished from 3d render".

 I won't be able to do a lot of tweaks per sprite case, because my goal is to get as close to my drawing without having to redraw too much. This guy's gonna have a ton of different animations, each with 8 directions, that's a lot to draw (kill me lol)
It needs to get close enough. I can tweak the model tho, so I added a bit of curve to the legs so the render pics it up.

I made the low poly and rig this weekend, so I now have a full puppet that I can animate. I also baked a world space normal map, in case I want to it that later in the game for lighting effects.

here's the first walk pass!


keep in mind that he'll look like the one in the left once all the sprites are redrawn with the render guiding it, just like my 360 turntable.

Also, should I create a topic on "projects" forum? I feel like it's a better place than wip, I'm not sure now :O.

Thanks for all the feedback, I carefully note everything, even if I can't work on everything ;), so I always appreciate.

Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on April 18, 2020, 07:37:26 am
So after the walk, i did 2 idle animations, the head turn will be more rare. My goal is to mock-up all the animations he can do, to test in game, and tweak gameplay and feedback/feel before drawing anything. It's really easy to go back into any file and re-adjust things on the fly.

so here's the two idle spritesheets


Next: running and melee :P
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on April 19, 2020, 08:24:57 am

run finished! I actually feel like I should tweak back the walking now...he bends his knees too much and stomps the ground strangely.
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Mathias on April 19, 2020, 10:17:37 am
This is going really well! I dig it. Did you do the environment tiles, too? Looks awesome.

Hope you don't mind the lack of feedback around here. That's what happens when you post work that's better than 90% of posts. The level of quality doesn't leave a whole lotta room for crit. But that's GOOD news, for you.
If you're keen on posting regularly about this project as you go I might suggest doing so in the Devlogs board instead - https://pixelation.org/index.php?board=27.0

Overall, this is working quite well visually, imo. Crazy good for someone's first isometric environment attempt.
Has any code been written yet? Typically you want to get a working prototype up and running asap, before finished art assets are needed, but that's a different subject. Or maybe you're just practicing iso pixel art techniques.
It does look cool essentially, but I don't really understand what all the white drippy stuff is. If it's paint, then the painters were insane and they need to go back to wall paintin' school. It reminds me of glitched pixels or redraw garbage. That said, it does make the brick walls much more interesting. But I wish I could tell what it's supposed to be.

I'm really interested in your 3D workflow.
What is your pipeline like for going from 3D to 2D, specifically the pixel conversion stage - when the rendered 3D animation gets turned into a pixel art animation.
What about squash/stretch, adding wind-up frames to increase impact, and smears for weapon swinging frames?
These things are inherently difficult to pull off with rigged 3D character animation, so I'm guessing you have a plan to incorporate such enhancements in your animated sprites during the pixel art redrawing stage.

Idea - black out walls cross sections and remove noisey edge highlight, too.

Will walls' visibility be toggled when player walks behind them so he doesn't get lost?

Have you thought about adding dynamic lighting or other non indexed pixel art effects (NPA)?
Title: Re: [WIP]isometric "zombie" scene, for a personal project
Post by: Orbs on April 20, 2020, 11:47:47 am
Thank you! Yes I’m doing the environments as well. I will definitely  create a page on the devlog, i feel like it will suit my progress better.

For now It’s pretty much me for all the art, story and gameplay, and one of my friend is doing sound effects and music. We also have a programmer that did some cool tests in unity, but it’s still really early, we’re not sure he’ll be available to work on it. Right now our short term goal is to prototype the base combat in an “arena’, no story, no dialogues, just making sure the collisions, melee and shooting works well, and the impact feedback is great. This is why I’m using 3D to prototype all the hero’s kit before drawing anything in pixel art. It allows me to edit animations, add remove stuff on the fly, and focus on gameplay.

The drippy stuff is supposed to be fresh white paint, but I do agree I went overboard with it haha. I had the inspiration for this corridor from left4dead, no mercy map.

My workflow so far is using the 3d model to animate him, with the right scale, and converting his animation into sprites, just like I did on the 260 dude spinning. I’m not gonna lie, I’m not using any “magic pixel” shader or anything that we can see used on games like cell cells. I will be redrawing all the sprites by hand, and it will be extremely time consuming but I want something very clean and pixel perfect. It will be very important for the style of the game. I do hope to re-use a lot of sprites for multiple characters tho, once I have a lot of moves done. For stretch and squash, my 3d rig can deform but I will probably not rely much on those effects unfortunately, I did some tests on smear tho, it works in 3D so this could work. I will probably trying to go as low as I can in terms of sprites until it breaks, hopefully smear. Will allow me to reduces the amount of sprites.

Thank for the PO, I like the back out walls. Walls and ocluders will disapear completely and look “cut” from above. I don’t want that weird halo fallout 1 had behind walls,  I prefer a diablo 3 approach for readability.

I’m totally thinking about dynamic light, my character actually has a world space normal map that I can render already. It might sound crazy, but I’d love to try to play with accurate pixel art normalmaps for dynamic effects, like flashlights etc.

Was too lazy to start working on his melee attack so I made a third idle that comes rarely, where he stretches his arms lol.

also started working on a hit/combat idle