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Messages - The B.O.B.
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Pixel Art / Re: My Gallery [criticism desirable]
« on: December 07, 2015, 02:37:30 am »
The newest animation (not finished yet)!

   I remember seeing this in and I commented on it. I didn't realize you posted it here as well, after a bit of perusing in the animation section. I was kinda' confused as to how the character was physically pulling off the move as the way his arm is bending when he leans back on the ground seemed a bit unrealistic(ignoring the 'it's a cartoon'/'style' excuses).

   I wanted to make sure that I was seeing what I was thinking I was seeing correctly, so I colored in the limbs certain colors to tell which were which. Whether they are the front or backs is irrelevant, as animating something like this should be extremely clear as to what the character is doing. In this case, the one tone character's movement is seen a bit more clearly with the lines, which you can see below:

   The confusion is that when someone does a kick-up, they don't move their arms behind them like your character is seemingly doing in your animation. Doing so would cause one's arms to break by the sheer weight caused by the off-balance, if they were to just jump backward the way your character is. I suppose an animation is in call as to understand just what exactly I'm seeing when I view your animation:

   I tried to redo the animation, both with the colored limbs and non-colored limbs, so you can see a different method/approach to the movement. Normally, if someone is trying to do a stand-to-ground kick-up, they'd use the upper-back as a landing pad. The arms would move in front and over their heads, landing above the shoulders while grounded, so they can help as the stabilization for the spring created by the body when he pops up. Other details would be sizing and maintaining proportions with your character's limbs and such. Also, I felt like the attack from the kick-up needed a bit of a better arch so I extended that leg a bit, but brought it in as he landed. Either way, I know you're already finished with it. I just wanted to add my two cents to the issue.  Here it is, below:

ps, don't be afraid to try different shapes with your characters! Experiment and move away from the stick-figures or silhouettes.

General Discussion / Re: Day/Night detail contrast?
« on: October 30, 2015, 06:11:49 pm »
I guess I don't quite understand your question. Do you mean a piece that shows the same scene in two different times of day or a piece showing minimal details in the light/dark? Perhaps you're referring to Chiaroscuro, which focuses on the light/dark contrast within a piece? Maybe you mean something else, I suppose. If it's any of the prior, though, there's plenty of examples of it. Maybe you can give a rough drawing as an example of what you mean, perhaps?

Pixel Art / Re: [WIP] Boxing Footwork
« on: October 21, 2015, 11:41:13 pm »

Switched the arm sides and lessened the leg movement for the quick jab, plus added a few more details to make it easier to read.

Looking a little better.

   I decided to give the sprite a quick edit, just to kinda' calm him down abit. I feel like the colors you choose don't have much separation. in some cases. It makes it a bit hard for the eyes to distinguish in some parts. I tried working with the palette you used and edited it with colors that were more distinguishable. Here's a sample of it in this idle animation I did:

   I feel like the pose you have seems a bit off for a boxer. That's not to say that all boxers have the above stance, but it's far more common. In the animation above, I gave him a bit of a hunched position where his fists are a bit more closer to the face, to allow for mixture of guard and punches during battle. The version on the left(ver.1), is a more subtle idle, whereas the idle on the right(ver.2) is more springy and active. You can get a better idea by the little dot beside each character, which is set at the top of the head. You can see the extremes the dots bounce up and down to, to understand the differences in distance with the character's movement. Of course, It's all based on the attitude of the character and his personality, but thought that would be important to mention.

   The jab is there to demonstrate how that punch can be transitioned from the idle. This is just in the case that your attempting a jab animation, as I can't tell what exactly you're going for. The stance allows for it, with minimal movement of the legs and body. However, it seems like you're trying to mix the Ali shuffle with a combination of straights of sorts(like Balrog/Bison of Street Fighter fame) so I did a quick(rough) edit of it:

   When Ali does the shuffle he does set back JUST a bit. His arms hang back a bit to prep for either a jab, a straight, or a combination of a jab into a straight. The shoulders and arms don't move as much as your sprite is as well. Also, the thighs aren't moving as much either. Transitioned from the idle to show the stance can be done with that type of showboat style. Of course, there is the combo in the end which can be set up after the shuffle, so I added it below as well:

   It pretty much resembles Balrog/Bison/Boxer from the Street Fighter games. I'm just referencing it as that is what it seems like you're going for; two straights being produced from the legs(which is why the sturdy leg on the side of the punching arm is what sets back for stability and effectiveness in the power of the punch). Of course, there is a quick couple of frames during the transition of each key pose. Timing is sped up for each punch key, to make the impact of the punch seem more realistic.

   Again, none of this is what you have to go with or follow to the Tee. I see you're trying to go for dramatic affect in your animations via Conceit's posts, which is fine. The only thing I can recommend is to study general movement, so you know where the dramatic movement stems from in the end. Also, as a general criticism, it seems all your characters have stick figure bodies with round heads. I just wonder if you will be attempting more complex shapes in animation in the future. Here's to hopin'!

Cheers and good luck!

Pixel Art / Re: [WIP] Boxing Footwork
« on: October 18, 2015, 09:35:26 pm »

   If the character is meant to be a boxer, the posturing is the opposite of what it should be. In other words, your character's leg is moving with the arm that is leading the punch. It should be the opposite, in that the leg on the same side of the arm should be staying back to stabilize and exert more power on the punch. If it's a jab, there really shouldn't be much movement on the legs at all.
   I suggest paying close attention to the way boxers train and look at their feet positioning in comparison to their body and arms. In fact, try to do what your character is doing in real life, and honestly ask yourself if that is a wise way to move one's body for an attack.

Pixel Art / Re: Any tips or criticism is welcome!
« on: October 04, 2015, 03:50:55 am »
I'm no mod, but you have these same requests/animations on multiple threads. There's no need for that. It would be better to ask for help on one and delete or remove the others, as it clutters the forums and makes other posters requests/threads less visible. If someone is interested or has the time, they will post when they feel necessary.

Challenges & Activities / Re: The Daily Sketch
« on: July 27, 2015, 03:51:14 am »
You ever have a great idea/thought in your head AND drive to put it down on paper/digital medium? Then you start doing it. It eventually peters out and you lose fuel QUICK. I think this was one of those moments for me. It was larger, but I shrunk it down to 50%, as to not take up so much room here. Any hoo, here was my poor attempt of a piss-poor attempt at Photoshop-thing that I began about a year ago and never quite picked it back up...

testing imgur host with image

Pixel Art / Re: Gun, muzzle flash and bullet hit animations
« on: June 24, 2015, 04:27:38 pm »
So far,  I've been able to do most of the sprites fairly well,  but now I've come to the animations and I'm starting to hit a brick wall,  animations have always been my weakest part, and specifically, the ones I need help with now.

I've got a few guns that I want to have a muzzle flash animation.  that just flickers on and off when the gun is shot.  However,  from the pictures, you can see that they are far from anything acceptable.  I also am not sure what to do since some guns shoot faster than others.  For the fast ones, should I just have a 1 or 2 frame animation,  where as the slower guns could have a 5 or 6 frame animation?  I'm also thinking that part of the problem is because there is now there is no 'glow' from the flash, but I played around with that a little bit and couldn't end up with anything that I liked, so I scraped it.

   Hey Geofied. Saw these and thought they don't look so bad as an animation, at least for a video game asset. Honestly, it depends on the whole size and style of the rest of the game and it's corresponding assets(animations, characters, objects, etc.) I say this because animating for games is just SLIGHTLY different than animating for other things, like cartoons, shows, commercials, or movies. Not by much, though.
   I say this because somethings don't have to mimic physics and other things in an EXACT manner. Some times accentuating certain things can be enough to translate what you're trying to say, in terms of animation(I suppose that is an actual concept in any field of animation, now that I think about it.). In this case, the muzzle flash should be kept simple. I don't really think you need the oranges or yellows in it, as a simple white flash would suffice. Again, with gun shots it's quick and explosive, but with less discharge and matter burning up inside the muzzle blast, than an actual explosion. So just like lightning, there's less color to it. Not to mention, the amount of frames in the animation will be so small, the player probably won't even notice it, in video game context. Less colors mean less work for you, if you're going to be doing it with multiple weapons.
   As an example, here's a gun goon I did for a Batman game a while ago. When you see it play, you'll notice the muzzle flash is probably larger than an actual flash, but that's fine because keeping it realistic would dull down the action of what is happening. Also, the quick flashes light up the character as well, so there is some interaction between the two in some way(which is why, I'm hesitant to critique any further unless I see how the gun effects correspond with your other character assets). Any hoo, here it is:

   You can see, the flash is really only like a 2-3 quick flicker frame animation. It's large, but doesn't drown the point. I suppose for larger, more powerful weapons(like rocket launchers/grenades/bazookas, etc.), you may have to focus more on the effects, but nothing much for a rifle or hand gun muzzle flash. So I guess in short, what I'm trying to say is, don't frustrate yourself over a simple effect like muzzle flash; just keep it simple and to the point and you'll be fine.

   If you still feel it feels too simple with such a short amount of colors and effects, here's a good sample by Pawige(from his gallery, on, with similar concepts that I mentioned earlier:

*Bonus! Here's a small MGS Snake sprite I did even further back when, with Snake firing shots with a bit of muzzle flash as well(much less flashlier):

Good luck on your game, though!!

Pixel Art / Re: Fighting Game Animations
« on: May 30, 2015, 11:52:49 pm »
   Whoo, haven't done one of these in a while. Hey, Rosier. Saw this a while back and saw some of the responses you've gotten thus far. Some have been really good, but I'm not sure if I'm quite seeing it in your updates. I decided I had enough time today to do some quick edits and maybe try to add some info to this discussion, regarding the animation of small scale pixel art. So after about 2 hours or so of doodling in Pro-motion and a few artistic liberties I've taken with your initial concept, here's what I came up with so far!

Bumping cause I finally decided to finish some new stuff...

Idle: Based somewhat on Sol Badguy's Idle from Guilty Gear --

   The idle you have so far is decent, but there are some odd things happening here. I looked at your inspiration, via the Sol Badguy gif, and see where you're trying to go with this. It kinda' seems like you're missing the subtleties of the idle. To be more specific, your character's feet keep moving up and down, as if he's in a constant state of perpetual tip-toeing, moving up and down. You could make the excuse that he's hovering with ice powers or magic(or something), but I got the feeling he's grounded in that idle. Therefore, look at your reference one more time in Sol's stance, and notice from the knee's down those body parts rarely move. Therefore, I think it would be wise to leave the feet in a static state.

   Also, you have to understand you're working with a small space here, so traditional animation may give way to traditional pixel art technique. That is to say that you can't just focus on moving a pixel from one place to another and call it a day, as if it were a traditional line. Instead, you may have to implement a method called 'sub-pixeling'. That is to say, that within a set of frames, where one pixel was, another pixel that changes in color or contrast may take it's place creating the illusion of movement, yet somehow smoother transitions. In higher res animations, think of the equivalent of auto-tween effects between two animated frames/graphics. They are similar concepts, but sub-pixeling would be very helpful here.

   Therefore, I tried to add these concepts in this singular idle pose that I've edited for ya'. Also note that the majority of pixel movement is happening in the chest region. As you look further past the chest in all directions, you'll notice the further it moves throughout the body from the chest, the less pixel movement or sub-pixeling there is(which makes sense, as the major action in the animation is the breathing, happening through the lungs, not the other body parts!  ;D ), except for maybe the head region:

Went ahead and redid the combo into a more viable, less flail-y motion.  What I mean when I say W/O Delay is that I took out a 'Lead Up' Frame right before the actual 'Full Hit' Frame.  I couldn't decide whether or not I wanted it to look more snappy or not, and thought you guys might have more insight.

One Hit:
One Hit W/O Delay:

   As for the one hit animation, it seems you've already been told about the snap in the attack, but I'm still not quite noticing it. For animation, timing matters especially if you are to convey motion or actions to people. What some beginner tend to do when they jump into animation initially is to start animating an action, from the starting frame to the end frame in chronological order. Of course, logic would dictate that as being the smart thing to do, but animating is a bit different. It's all about communication and translating it to paper(digital or not). With this, it's about timing.

   As I mentioned previously, your animations look as though you're following through each frame chronologically, making it look as though each frame is running at the same frames per sec causing the movement to look slower than it should. In this case, you don't want to do that. Try and make key frames first, dotting their positioning before doing the 'tweens'(or "in-betweens", as there known generally). By doing so, you'll find that you'll have a better idea with mapping out the timing for each key, and how many frames it may or may not take to move to another key. Take a look at this quick edit I've done here:

   So, here it's a simple 5 frame animation. We're moving from stance to a quick jab and a recover back to stance. The key animations are the stance and the jab here, obviously. It's a simple jab, so you don't need to do much work. In fact, this could be done shorter, which you'll see in this next little sample I've done. However, for the moment focus on the changes I've made:
  • In frame 1, there's the idle stance. We'll consider this a key frame.
  • In frame 2, there is a transition moving to the next key frame, which is a solid jab.
  • In frame 3, we see the key frame, in a lower stance throwing the jab.
  • In frame 4, we have a transition/recovery frame. It looks very similar to frame 3 and the movement changes little. This is done for a reason! By making a small change from the snapping jab, we're creating the illusion of a snappy punch, slightly extending it's normal reach. Think of it as a squish-squash technique that Disney animators use on their models/characters. But altering the model's general shape/length/form, it gives it more flow and liveliness. I added the white flashy stuff, to add to the ice-effect you mentioned earlier(not that it looks like ice, just to show which hand is causing harm).
  • In frame 5,  we have what SEEMS to be a slightly out of place transition frame. However, not so much. Because we're dealing with video game animation(as you stated earlier) there are some frames that may need to be drawn that can be reused to easily transition a movement to repeat itself. In this case, we've drawn a stance that is slightly crouched, but similar to the transition frame 2. However, it could technically be a an idle frame all on it's own. This is done on purpose, as we want a universal stance that other similar attacks can be done from, so combinations can easily flow from one type of attack to another, along with repeat frames.

   Based on the last frame I mentioned earlier, we can see it helps continue the jab, if the player continuously presses the same command, programming-wise:

   So in a way, that last frame is a transitional frame not only in an animation sense, but in programming sense as well(for a fighting game, at least)!

      The other thing is timing here. On the first single jab attack I posted, the timing in chronological order from frame 1 to frame 5 is as follows in the DELAY of milliseconds per frame: 1st frame-150 ms/f, 2nd frame-60 ms/f, third frame- 40ms/f, fourth frame-60 ms/f, fifth frame-150 ms/f. Notice the quickest frame is the 3rd frame(with the smallest delay, meaning it's moving at more frames per second), which is the attack itself. Again, by adjusting our timing we can create the snapping effect.

   Much like animating a swinging pendulum, an animator notices that when the pendulum reaches each end of it's respective swing, there are more frames to be drawn/tweened in those end positions. However, when the pendulum swings downward reaching it's' midpoint of the swing, an animator will notice there are less tweens drawn there to create the illusion of speed(ie, each frame is further from one another at the mid-point so the eyes are seeing images appear in different spots on the screen at such a fast time, they seem like the images are moving quicker than the prior frames which are more closer to one another, distance/position-wise). The same is happening with our animation in that these extreme changes in positions/stances/placement will determine how many frames are needed to translate our movement.

Two Hit:
Two Hit W/O Delay:

   We continue what we've discussed earlier and apply these same methods to the next attack with some minor changes, which is simply a two punch combination. I didn't mention it earlier, but the positioning of an attack really does matter. As mentioned by the other users, the starting force of a fighter's attack comes from the body, NOT the limbs. Energy travels from the center of gravity, creating a stronger attack, than simply moving an arm up or down. That's not to say one can't attack by simply flicking a limb in anothers general direction, but martial artists around the world have learned energy moves from object to object; because of this fact, if a fighter moves his body in such a way that a limb(such as an arm or leg) travel afterward in it's general path, the resulting blow would be more forceful and resolute than simply moving with a limb.

   Your character's limbs seem a bit limp, as if they are flicking the opponent with the back of their hand in a strange 'shoo'ing manner. If he is meant to be punching, than a straight arm, which begins from the chest or hip, is more devastating.

   The legs dip a bit to produce a better "spring action" for the resulting blow. Notice the end placement of the hands as well. They are placed no lower than his shoulder, as it's meant to be a high attack. Also note the placement of his feet, as even though they turn as he turns, they still remain in place. For boxers, having a stance where the legs are shoulder-width apart and set in place during a combination helps with the power.(obviously, the application of said technique can change with different styles of boxing, where a fighter who is a 'poker' will tend to move his feet as he pokes/jabs his opponent for points. However, these fighters win by points and not damage, mostly. I'm assuming your character is looking for damage, so he may sacrifice movement on such an occasion).
   As far as timing goes, I've intentionally slowed down the key frame attacks here for a particular reason. I'm only doing so to create an 'impact' affect. In reality, I would've timed them quicker like the first attack. However, I'm slowing each attack here, to give you a sense of how a programmer may want to see an animation play out during a game. That is to say that if first attack hits, there would be a short delay in timing for the next input to be placed in the combination series. So basically, it's how a programmer would probably want to set the programming for an attack for added effect.
Three Hit:
Three Hit W.O Delay:

   Again, we're just following what we've learned so far. I reused some frames to help transition the movement a bit better, and edited some existing ones slightly to extend his reach just a teensy bit further. Each key is still slowed down, for added-effect, until he returns back to his idle pose:

   As for everything else, it's all in the details. The subtle swing of the coat and hair, posing, and knowing how your timing plays into an attack. Practice makes perfect(which I'm not claiming for myself at all), as they say. Hope to see an update in the future, as I like seeing animators grow!

Good luck! :crazy:

General Discussion / Re: Official Off-Topic Thread
« on: March 22, 2012, 03:36:34 pm »
   Just got done reading Moby Dick. I must say, I can see how this book received such mixed reactions when it first came out. Maybe it's due to the volume of movies I've inhaled over my lifetime, as opposed to books, but I felt this story dragged far too long in it's waist.
   It felt as if the writer(Melville) had trouble deciding what type of book he was wanting this to be when starting it off, what with the silly antics between Ishmael and Queequeg, to the GIANT wad of ship and whale anatomy in the middle, and finally the mad hunt in the end. Ahab is introduced bit by bit, which kind of hurts the novel's excitement of progression, in my opinion. When I was younger, I heard so many great things about this character, and he was built so largely as some American literary icon. He is said to be completely mad with vengeance, which I could see the writer was attempting to display. However, his interaction with most Captains he came across, and his crew seemed almost sportsman-like(if whale hunting could be called this, away from it's true cruel nature) as far as the whereabouts of the White whale go during the all save the last chapters. There is only 1 or 2 chapters truly dedicated to him in the middle of the book, and rest feels like Sailor ship-anatomy lessons 101.
   So much description goes into every minute detail, that I feel the writer loses himself in what was supposed to be the focal point of the story. I did enjoy the crew, however, and feel they got the brunt of it, in the end. Not that I was angry of their final fate, I just felt that their demise could've been better appreciated had the writer took the time to describe their ends sincerely, instead of mark their deaths "off-screen", so to speak. I was just so frustrated that it took so long for some excitement to reach the book, and have even more so to have it end so abruptly for a crew who were the ONLY reason to even bother with the middle of the bloated story.
   Overall, I wanted to like this, after hearing about it so often. Unfortunately, it dolled on and I can't quite say I enjoyed his Melville's descriptive nature as much as I've enjoyed Hemingway's in this field of story telling. A sad disappointment, for uneducated fool like myself. I'd give it a 2 out of 5 stars.

General Discussion / Re: Official Off-Topic Thread
« on: July 07, 2011, 03:06:06 am »
Haven't been here in a while. Things seem a bit quiet, if I say so myself. I guess it's that the users I used to post with have mostly moved on to something else. Either way, something compelled me to post here again. But I don't want it to be completely meaningless. So seeing as how this is the Off-Topic Thread, I thought I'd ask:

Is there any song that you guys hear that INSTANTLY puts a smile on your face, even if it goes against the grain of your general musical tastes? I'm still a metal head, but I enjoy other old rock and roll songs just as well. That being said, there is a guilty pleasure of mine, though. Every time I hear it, I can't help but enjoy the 80's gloss of it. I think it goes a little something like this:

"  Just a small town girl, livin' in a lonely world
She took the midnight train goin' anywhere
Just a city boy, born and raised in south Detroit
He took the midnight train goin' anywhere
... "

...So if I had to tell pixel artists who are down on their luck, not willing to continue, I'd tell them:

" Don't stop believin'!!!
Hold on to the feelin'!!!
Streetlights people


The question itself doesn't lend itself to just bands. It could be of any medium. I have a love for some memorable cartoon themes as well. How could one not smile when the Duck Tales theme comes on? *sigh* Oh nostalgia...

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