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Messages - Quady14
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General Discussion / Re: Game Engines for 2D Sidescroller?
« on: July 31, 2016, 12:14:47 pm »
I don't have much personal experience with it, only briefly dabbled, but you might try giving Stencyl a look. It's free, has supported a fair handful of games (including in-development Metroidvania Ghost Song which looks incredibly good) and has a pretty well-supported and populated forum which might help you work out the programming side of things while Pixelation helps you with the art side of things. Surely people on either side could do both, but yeah, start there and see how it works out! I'm a total mess as soon as programming becomes involved, but if I remember right Stencyl has some good basic tools to get you started with flexible features to let you do your own coding once you're ready for that. Hope this helps!

Hey guys, I'm not a new member, but more a long-gone returning one so I wanted to come back with a proper hello! Back in 2013 I made a few (very few) posts here then went completely dark; I was focusing on school and though I didn't lose interest in pixel art I felt my skills weren't up to par, maybe a little intimidated by how incredibly others' work was, comparing quality of work is a mistake I know it but at the time it made me apprehensive to post and I needed some time to sort myself out.

Case in point, here's my old 2013 self's art:

Messy! I definitely had a lot to learn, I still do for the most part but I've been dabbling in everything from painting to sketching and trying to learn to see things better, understand light and shadow a little more and at least try for more natural anatomy.

Now I've come back to pixel art a bit more since earlier this month and I'm taking some different approaches; less animation, larger pieces, more focus on making a single frame look good before running off to try and bring it into motion immediately. Animation is a whole can of worms I need to prepare for before I try tackling it again.

Made this past July:

Still a long way to go but I feel a little more confident that I'm looking at things more naturally and my workflow and perspective on this stuff has improved over time. I've been posting elsewhere but don't feel I'm getting the feedback I really need, and remembering back to this community I thought it would be good for me to grow as an artist to come back here and give it another go! Maybe this stuff is just a hobby for now, maybe it'll develop into something more, but I look forward to hopefully connecting with you guys more in the coming months!

So, properly reintroduced, I'll catch you guys around. ;)

Pixel Art Feature Chest / Re: Super Mario Land sprite remake/edit
« on: May 17, 2013, 01:21:11 am »
This was one of the first games I ever owned; really love what you're doing with the sprites: Keepin' it accurate but adding those tiny details really adds up. I'm not very experienced with pixel art yet so I don't notice tiny inconsistencies or potential improvements very well, but I see no major flaws with your stuff, it's all pretty visually pleasing overall and definitely a step or two up from the original work. Keep up the good work and do what you've gotta do would be my best advice I guess!  ;D

Valid points, it's always good to hear the strategies of other people to animate and create sprites; it's always good to adopt more efficient practices to improve output. I do have just one question, when you talk about drawing the animations large, how do you get your animations doubled or quadrupled in size without losing quality? Or do you mean that you start large then scale down and clean things up? In my experience scaling up makes cleaning things up much harder to work with, but I'll have to try drawing large and scaling down to see if it's any different for me.

But yeah, thanks again for your advice, it'll come in handy I'm sure. :)


I recently participated in my second 24-hour college game jam (first one to actually end up with a playable game at the end) and I thought I would submit the character art I did here to get some advice on where to go. Our randomly selected project was "Space Monkey Platformer" so that's why there's space suit monkeys everywhere. I'm less happy than usual on these guys, but granted we were working under a time limit and it takes me forever to put out even this, I think it would be valuable just to hear any and all critiques/advice/suggestions/serve-me-up-some-butt-whoopin'-pixel-art-justice type comments.

I've done an okay body of pixel art over the past few months, and I'm drawing in my sketchbook every day to try and find a style I'm happy with, but I'm just not quite there yet. I've got inklings of what I'm comfortable with and what appeals to me, but I really want to improve my workflow, especially with pixel art. It takes me 3 hours to do what takes most people 30 minutes to do ten times as well, and I feel like the first step to bridging the gap is to understand how to naturally get depth and detail while not thinking about it too much, I want to be speedy but I don't want to be slapdash, basically, so if you guys have any tricks of the trade to maximize output in minimal time, I would be grateful to hear them... So with that, I'll stop blabbering and upload these guys already!

TL;DR - I made some space monkey sprites in 24 hours, and they stink even though I spent a lot of time on them; can you help me with some advice on improving general quality as well as workflow?

Space Monkey Agent Paulskevic

Evil Space Gorilla

Evil Helicopter Chimp

I apologize in advance for the shameful lack of quality, I hope you can believe me when I say I'm trying as best as I can (in this case within the limits of 24 hours, otherwise I would've spent even more time on each individual character). Please though, fire away, I only want to get better, and any advice you can give I'll try to keep in mind in the future when working on pixel art. Thanks everybody! :)

P.S. There is one last thing I'm curious about, just for the sake of extra knowledge; during our game jam, there were two main issues regarding implementing the character art. First off was that due to the dimensions of the rooms, we had to stretch out my pixel art considerably so it would relatively fit the sizes of the levels, which were of a pretty significantly large resolution. Obviously that made the sprites look really blown up and sloppy, but what I'm curious about for any programmers or otherwise knowledgeable fellows around here is what the solution to that problem would be? I'm sure there's some sort of compromise, be it a camera fixed on the player or something to that effect, I'd be interested to hear it.

Pixel Art / Re: Scientist(C+C)
« on: March 22, 2013, 04:58:01 am »
SO ready for science!

This is purely opinion, but I think his beard should be more grandiose and beautiful. Just flowing down right past his tie! Oh, also, the hands look maybe a bit flat on the newest version, I actually thought they had a little more depth in the original version. Maybe experiment with shading them a little more to get that effect again? Otherwise, looks like a pretty snazzy scientist! :)

Pixel Art / Re: Alien Characters Pixel Art
« on: March 21, 2013, 11:53:07 pm »
Just found out we actually have "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" right in our garage storage! What a coincidence, huh? My mom's gonna send it up to college come Easter, so I'll probably check it out within the next couple of weeks. I just want to reiterate, I appreciate all your help!

Pixel Art / Re: Alien Characters Pixel Art
« on: March 21, 2013, 11:40:34 pm »
Only 30 minutes? I swear everywhere I look people are so speedy with their art. It's embarrassing but I spent at least 3 hours on those sprites and that was the best I could come out with  :-[

The biggest thing I've been trying to do it just draw as often as I can, at least once a day, and while it mostly just amounts to doodles in my sketchbook, I feel like that's a decent way for me to get better right now. Life drawings would probably be helpful though, I've never really enjoyed them very much but I can see how they would be really useful in terms of fundamentals.

Pixel Art / Re: Alien Characters Pixel Art
« on: March 21, 2013, 06:01:30 pm »
Phew, wow... That was a pretty amazing post  :lol:

I'm honored that you took the time to redo the sprite, and it looks amazing! May I ask how long it took you to make? Also, do you use a tablet? I've attempted switching over to my tablet for pixel art but it doesn't feel very comfortable to use, I'm just not really used to the feeling of it.

I'll definitely try to work more with shading. I haven't really learned a hard and fast rule to it and this was one of my earlier attempts to use shading; still didn't quite get the look I was hoping for though, so yeah, I think the method you showed here would definitely benefit me to start messing with. I'll look up "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" too, sounds like a good read for me!

Thanks again for all your help, I really appreciate it. My biggest thing right now I guess is that I'm afraid to take risks with my art; I've been making most everything flat because delving into that frontward/behind depth of the character starts to just confuse me. Gotta really start working on that if I want to improve. I'll maybe try to redo this guy from scratch a couple of times and post what I get. Hopefully it'll at least be somewhere halfway between my original sprite and your edit!

Pixel Art / Re: Alien Characters Pixel Art
« on: March 21, 2013, 08:25:35 am »
Does it seem strange that the alien is walking sideways?

I definitely see what you mean with it looking strange. When I was making this guy for whatever reason I drew the face directly in the middle, which does make it look kind of weird. I guess it was because his eyes are kind of big and I didn't want to cut off much. If I did it again I'd probably just offset the eyes and mouth more to the right so he looks a little more natural, like he's at least sort of looking in the direction he's walking in.

Any other tips on improving perspective? I feel like I particularly have trouble with overlapping say an arm over a torso during a walk cycle, stuff like that catches me up a lot, though not in this particular case. I may upload another alien character I did to show what I mean. I'll wait a little bit for other critiques on this first guy though. Thanks though!

Personally, I like it alot. I thought maybe the third character in the row could use a couple of flipped frames so the tongue goes both left and right.

I like that idea, maybe I'll add more tongue-wagging action to his walkcycle!

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