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Topics - NickZA
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Because I'm going to be doing a lot of automated rotations for my game, I need to produce sprites that are clean, i.e. very little stippling or single-pixel artefacts, since these get mangled during automated rotations. To put this in different words, sprites with a more "vectorised" and less "painterly" style.

It's one thing to search on "clean" in these forums, but not everyone's definition is the same, presumably, hence my post. I'm looking at stuff of at least similar quality to vedsten's recent post here, with similarly clean work especially at larger sizes (in the region of 64x64 and up to double that would be great).

[EDITED: to shorten/make more readable -- also, mods, please move to help wanted]

Dear Pixellators

I'm assembling a project plan for the first (hopefully commercial) game for my company, Handcrafted Games. I need some ballpark estimates on having a fairly complete set of pixel art made for the game. It will be a 2D top-down RPG shooter, similar to Crimsonland, Droid Assault or Chaos Engine, basically. Graphically it is closest to Crimsonland and Almora Online, as we will be using the direct top-down PoV.

I would need the artist to be very comfortable working with variable opacity, and also with a limited palette (likely about 32-64 colours as the old Amiga titles) -- please advise on whether these are realistic requirements for a pixeller.

Please suggest an hourly rate as well as what you might be willing to charge on a "by-the-job" basis to make your offer more competitive, assuming you would be doing ALL of this work.

Rough breakdown of work:

Character concepts

For the characters, I need some basic concept sketches done, leaving me with 2-4 fairly different choices for each character as viewed top down. Because of the viewpoint and sprite size there isn't a lot to this, but I will need to get someone creative enough to do this at least tolerably well.


Number of discrete characters /animated sprites: 30
Number of animations per sprite: 3 (except player)
Number of frames per animation: 8-16
Total frames (worst case): 1600
Size: Average dimensions of 64x64 (most medium sized creatures eg. skeletons or wolves), but anywhere from 32x32 up to 128x128.
Description: There is a long list but this includes things like Skeletons, Efreet, Dragons, Minotaurs, Gelatinous Cubes, Slimes, Treants, Golems and so on. Each character will have it's locomotion (walk OR fly OR swim) animation plus 2 ability animations (one of which is usually a melee attack) , with the exception of the player character who will have five (sword strike, bow shot, wand cast, flask throw, shield block) plus walk. So basically you're looking at about 29x3 + 1x6 = 93 or perhaps 100 animations to be on the safe side. Since I've mentioned Crimsonland and Almora Online, its likely that many characters will actually consist of a separate sprite for legs/feet vs. torso, which actually will make your job easier. In cases of creatures who aren't humanoid, this will be a more standard single-sprite approach.


Number of static sprites: 10
Size: 32x128
Description: These will be themed, one of each, eg. sandstone, granite, rough-hewn rock etc. Rather than being a square tile, these will likely be strips of say 32x128. These strips are laid along passage edges (sometimes end to end) to create the walls. The game is not tile-based as such, it's vector based, so due to arbitrary rotations performed by the code, we'd need to work together to make sure these sprites look reasonably good at any number of degrees of rotation.


Number of static sprites: 30 (three for each wall sprite theme)
Size: 64x64
Description: The floors are the only part of the game that will be tiled as such, and these tiles orientation will depend on the orientation of the room, so again they will need to look good at different orientations. 3 different tiles (eg. 3 sandstone, 3 granite, etc.) per wall theme type guarantees that every room's tiles don't look horribly repeated.

Static dungeon features
Number of static sprites: 15
Number of animated sprites: 5
Number of animations per sprite: 1
Number of frames per animation: 8-16
Total frames (worst case): 255
Size: 64x64 to 128x128
Description: These sprites represent individual dungeon features such as doors, fountains, monoliths, mirrors, crystal spheres, barrels, boulders, etc. Some may be animated, but being basically inanimate this would be minor. Doors would be in perhaps 5 different materials eg. metal, stone, wood, onyx, sandstone.

*Areas of effect and materials*
Number of animated sprites: 20
Number of animations per sprite: 1
Number of frames per animation: 8-16
Total frames (worst case): 320
Size: 64x64
Description: These represent bits of area effects, and bits of material on the dungeon floor: patches of sand, raging flames, sparkles on the surface of water, blood, piles of bones, grass and foliage, patches of stormcloud, etc. These will often be semi-transparent toward their edges which will allow them to blend in with a background and with each other somewhat seamlessly. This is pretty central to the gameplay and will need a fair amount of work to make them blend well.


Number of animated sprites: 10
Number of animations per sprite: 1
Number of frames per animation: 1-16
Total frames (worst case): 160
Size: 32x32 to 64x64
Description: Missiles, bolts, beams, you name it. Some will be static, like arrows or ice shards, while others will be somewhat animated, like fire (8 frames) and some will have longer animations eg. a flask spinning as it flies through the air, or something nebulous like a mana bolt.


Number of static sprites: 20?
Size: 48x48
Description: These will be a typical glassy looking globe containing an icon of some sort representing what the pickup is. No animation required. These will also be used in the inventory bar or "belt" at the bottom of the screen, as part of the UI.

Character indicators

Number of static sprites: 10?

Possibly also various smaller indicators, glows etc. which will be used in the belt and more importantly as over- or under-lays in the gameworld itself, think of a surrounding ring or icon that indicates a buff or debuff on a creature.

UI Elements

Number of static sprites: ?
Description: There'd be a belt bar, and potentially buttons to scroll it, although I'd prefer the player never has that much inventory (TBD how to handle this). Also a health indicator (could be a bar, a globe or even just a row of hearts) and a stamina indicator (similar). Overall the game will have a pretty minimal interface -- most of what the player will need to know will be in the game world's graphics.

Game name logo

In the menu screen, I'd need a logo for the game's name, for which I would submit concepts to be worked up by the artist. Any suggestions on their part would be welcomed also, however. This is obviously larger scale work, say 600 pixels in width, and 1/3 to 1/2 of that in height.



Pixel Art / Figurestone's Pixel Experiments
« on: October 25, 2009, 11:52:43 am »
Hi all,

I'm posting on behalf of my partner Figurestone(Will), who is unable to do so due to certain sites (i.e. this one) being blocked by his provider. Please see our main thread (see sig) for more info. He'll be back here in the week, hopefully, to give feedback. In the meantime I'll forward any feedback on to him.

Here are two small experiments he's working on right now, to try and improve his technique.



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