AuthorTopic: GR#077 - Adventure Game Mockup 3/4 - RPG projection  (Read 15942 times)

Offline AlexHW

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GR#077 - Adventure Game Mockup 3/4 - RPG projection

on: October 22, 2011, 08:01:54 am
I haven't touched this in over a year, but I plan to add/edit it here and there. Feedback/critique wanted.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #1 on: October 22, 2011, 08:38:51 am
updated a bit of the water/pinetree/and dirt.

Offline Atnas

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #2 on: October 22, 2011, 05:28:19 pm
Really love that fox. I think the gray on the girls face looks far too much like stubble, and her eyes don't look completely aligned/ equidistant from the nose. That or.. It's just something with the head shape, I'd just suggest drawing it quickly again and comparing. The sprites are extremely expressive, good work!

Offline jams0988

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #3 on: October 22, 2011, 06:46:41 pm
Totally gorgeous. Nothing negative to say at all, especially since the set isn't even finished yet. Color me jealous! ;)
Edit: Ughhh, your little 16x16 pixel-y grass looks better than the grass I usually paint in full-featured painting programs. You bastarddd. XD

Really, nice work. Reminds me of Tales of Phantasia a bit, which is an amazing looking game.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2011, 06:57:46 pm by jams0988 »

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #4 on: October 22, 2011, 07:25:32 pm
thanks guys :)
I'll have to check that game out, looks pretty cool.
here's an update.. worked on fixing the girl's face. better?

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #5 on: October 22, 2011, 07:37:56 pm
quick change.. shifted eyes down a pixel (to make her have a less elongated face like the original. and also narrowed the bridge of nose.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #6 on: October 22, 2011, 10:44:08 pm
here's a quick update on the direction im taking with the knight's picture. also worked on the bush a bit.

Offline wwiggins

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #7 on: October 22, 2011, 10:44:31 pm
Beautiful! Great lines and really original colors... It looks very painterly.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #8 on: October 23, 2011, 05:00:53 am
thanks :)
here's a small update:

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #9 on: October 23, 2011, 06:29:45 am

Offline Calx

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #10 on: October 23, 2011, 06:41:58 am
       Very nice work, it looks like its going to be a very unique piece.    :y:
However,
Some of the color recycling just doesn't work as is, IMO.
For example, the tree. The leaves and the trunk use 2 light purple shades as darker shades,
And I think it hurts the overall depth and clarity of the tree.
The trunk could just use the darker brown shade instead of the purple,
for the leaves, you might want to use just a darker shade of green or greenish blue.

Overall, I think the piece uses to many de-saturated purples.
Hue shifting is important, but make sure the color you shift to has the proper value in relation to the colors next to it.
That said, I think this mock up has great potential, and that fox is going to look great when it is finished,
also I really love how you did the ear for it.  ;D

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #11 on: October 23, 2011, 07:07:44 am
The portraits are looking great. I would love to play a game in this style where pixel aesthetic and painterly style are favored over strong symbolism. With that said, do still be careful as this is still game art and the tiles have such a higher fidelity for single pixel detail that I fear the characters would get swallowed by it. Perhaps though, expertly executed animation could make this a non issue.

      Very nice work, it looks like its going to be a very unique piece.    :y:
However,
Some of the color recycling just doesn't work as is, IMO.
For example, the tree. The leaves and the trunk use 2 light purple shades as darker shades,
And I think it hurts the overall depth and clarity of the tree.
The trunk could just use the darker brown shade instead of the purple,
for the leaves, you might want to use just a darker shade of green or greenish blue.

Overall, I think the piece uses to many de-saturated purples.
Hue shifting is important, but make sure the color you shift to has the proper value in relation to the colors next to it.
That said, I think this mock up has great potential, and that fox is going to look great when it is finished,
also I really love how you did the ear for it.  ;D

While this is a completely valid critique in terms of more realistic representation ( decisions always made to enhance the form) it may be less valid in terms of stylistic voice. Now, it is improper for anyone to pull the " style" card but it is obvious that Alex knows how to advance and recede form and by that fact, anything that could be said to deter from clear form that may cause from unorthodox color recycling can be seen as stylistic intent. We can already read the object as a tree trunk and even still we do see that light is hitting it a certain way- so is it important incredibly important for those purple values to be darker? Even when their lower chroma lets the next palette step jump towards us through the picture plane which is exactly what the tree roots are intended to do?

That said, I do not wish for you to think im picking on you, or for you to even retract your critique as it is well enough written and valid. With an artist of this level we must however be aware of their voice which is dictated by their artistic choices- both planned and arbitrary.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2011, 07:10:24 am by Ryumaru »

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #12 on: October 23, 2011, 09:36:15 am
thanks, ill keep these things in mind.
here's an update the the knight's face.. I just realized he's looking into his visor, so I'll have to change the direction he is looking.

Offline pistachio

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #13 on: October 23, 2011, 11:25:35 am
An idea: More of a shadow cast onto his face by the visor. In the rougher, earlier version, where the face was overall lighter, this was more apparent. Although, masking his eyes in shadow is perhaps something of a cliché in some hooded characters of this type... But it makes sense, no? and adds a mysterious look to the character. His nose also seems a few pixels too low, although this may be a stylistic choice unless you're aiming for a realistic face (which otherwise you seem to be doing).
« Last Edit: October 23, 2011, 01:16:00 pm by pistachio »

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #14 on: October 23, 2011, 05:33:05 pm
good points..
how's this?

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #15 on: October 23, 2011, 07:59:06 pm
updated the girl's face:

Offline Tourist

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #16 on: October 24, 2011, 08:54:58 pm
I think the girl's face still has some structural problems.  At a guess, it looks like you used a reference photo taken from a camera phone with a terrible fish-eye lens and a single point flash.  The more I look at the face the more cubist it looks.

I think the main problem is that the forehead slopes back too sharply compared to the cheek line.  Here's a couple of quick references.  They aren't good references, but my computer blew up this weeke3nd so this was what I could grab quickly from the web.



First image, head is tilted back, and the chin is therefore thrust out much further than your image.  But the forehead slope is close to what you have. 

Second image the head is nodding forward.  The chin is under the cheek/eye like you have, but the forehead is that much more forward/vertical.

Third image, the head is tilted to the side.  Here is the only image where you can see the far cheek all the way past the mouth, but that's only because the face is chubby and smiling.  Again, the chin comes out rather far beyond the eye position.

In all three, the mouth and the tip of the nose are closer to the cheek than what you have, and the forehead is closer to the angle of the cheek line.  I tried a quick edit, but I goofed up the colors, and lost most of the roundness of the face.  And the mouth needs some rework.   But maybe it can help.



Tourist
« Last Edit: October 24, 2011, 09:13:50 pm by Tourist »

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #17 on: October 24, 2011, 09:19:29 pm
hm, thanks for the critique.. I made a few tweaks to the forehead/nose/chin/eye/cheek. I don't want to change anything too drastic like your edit because then it will alter her character, and I like the look mine has going.
here's an update, tell me if it helped.

Offline jams0988

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #18 on: October 25, 2011, 02:04:17 am
Getting better and better. =)
One thing that's bothering me is the knight's in-game sprite, though. The way he's standing, he doesn't read as a knight to me. Looks more like a rogue/archer/thief type of character. That might not be an issue once you start animating him right now. His legs add to his thief image - I can't tell if he's supposed to be wearing any armor done there, but it doesn't look like he is.

Love the zombie's portrait. Super cool. =D
I think your updated girl portrait basically fixes the problems Tourist mentioned. I also agree that his changes the character of your girl's face pretty drastically. For the record, I think "tough, main character woman" when I see his. Yours rings as a "damsel in distress/poor peasant girl." Both are good, but I'm not sure what you're aiming for.

Also, I disagree with Calx's assertion that the coloring recycling doesn't work. I was interested by what he said, so I spent a little while messing with your color scheme, seeing if I could find anything better. I couldn't, hence my disagreement. I'd love if Calx could change a few of the colors around for us, because I'm very curious about what he's thinking would be better.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2011, 02:10:32 am by jams0988 »

Offline Redshrike

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #19 on: October 25, 2011, 02:41:04 am
I just wanted to drop in to say that I've been enjoying this very much.  The tight detail in each tile (and the way the sudden color changes between them), with the fanciful hue shifting and character designs, combine into a strange and fascinating whole.  Very dreamlike and "Dunsany-ish."

Offline Tourist

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #20 on: October 25, 2011, 04:24:00 am
Mea culpa, my edit was rather poor.  I still think you could take a second look at the edge from eyebrow up to the hairline.  I feel it should straighter than what you have, unless you mean for that lock of hair to really cover that part of the skull.  Here's a wuxia actress which might be a better ref to your original:



From the eyebrow up there is a fairly long straight edge, and then a short gentle curve, followed by a sharp turn at the hairline.

Tourist

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #21 on: October 25, 2011, 08:48:28 am
I haven't been that motivated today, so i haven't worked much on it.. :\ hitting some walls on unrelated things.. ugh
anyways.

jams: thanks, yea, I didn't intend the knight to have heavy armor on his legs. I don't really like the look of a full suit of arm, makes them look slow and cumbersome. and yes, the girl isn't suppose to look tough.

redshrike: thanks, I googled dunsany and the images are definately cool. I love the atmosphere of it. It's good to hear you use the term dream-like, because I originally was inpired to make it kind of dreamy game-wise. knowing the art feels dreamlike makes me happier.

tourist: yea, i want the hair to kinda fall down a bit and cover it slightly.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #22 on: October 25, 2011, 09:43:08 pm
here's an update.. trying to figure out the tiles near water/ponds.. I'm thinking i may have to separate the cattail heads into a separate layer and make them more pronounced.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #23 on: October 25, 2011, 10:53:09 pm
here's a slight update..

Offline PypeBros

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #24 on: October 26, 2011, 08:38:21 am
The tiles are wonderful -- I love the swamp -- and the tones you pick bring in a sort of "painted universe" that fits well with fantasy settings. I'm surprised by the "squarish" look of some of them when transitions are missing.

Within the tree on the left, for instance, you bring in some variations in colours, but it looks like each tile must have a unique palette and the transition between brown and green leaves becomes a straight line. If that's technically possible, I'd have built the tree with layers that have more organic shapes so that the brown-to-yellow and yellow-to-green transitions drawn an organic curve as well.

There could be some readability issues with desaturated-sprites-on-desaturated-bg, but since it's a bit hard to see which tiles are meant to be walkable and which tiles are meant to be "walls" right now, I can't check whether it actually happens.

Regarding the portraits, they have a nice 14(?)-century look that also fits the theme well. However, they tended to depict women as pitiful souls praying for mercy ... which somehow appears in your leftmost portrait as well. If she's a major character, I'd have expected her to be more determined. Whether it can be done with eyes alone or the pose itself needs to be changed ... well, I'm unfortunately not skilled enough to tell.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #25 on: October 26, 2011, 08:12:43 pm
thanks for the feedback.
about the square-ish look to some tiles, it's because I'm trying to design everything to work with some implementation procedures I have in mind for the game. I'm hoping to have the environments randomly generated, yet look semi-decent. It will be very difficult to make perfect, so the less specific the tile placement need to be, the better they'll be able to be implemented.

The girl is the main character, but she doesn't really confront many things herself. she basically just finds herself in various predicaments.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #26 on: October 26, 2011, 09:42:44 pm
I too was wondering about the tiles. They were all about 1 or 2 colors away from gbc restrictions and it looked like you were using different color palettes to create a higher color count in each element.

Since it sounds like you wish to make something actual with this, my only current complaint is the darkest palette entry in the trees. Only like 4 or 5 tiles are using it and it doesn't help at all with the form; plus it competes with the dark accent of the main characters which right now is the only thing that separates them from the background without animation. The pond currently appears very busy, even more so than all the stuff going on near the tree. You may just not have gotten around to it, but if I were working on the project, especially with a slightly randomized map in mind, I would have some tiles of a much lower frequency ( business, noise) than others so that the eye could rest in some parts of the map.

edit: Oh, and if I haven't said it already: I really like this.

Offline PypeBros

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #27 on: October 27, 2011, 08:25:34 am
it's because I'm trying to design everything to work with some implementation procedures I have in mind for the game.
Ah. Foreign implementation constraints. I know that. Too bad. To be honest, I find your art wonderful, and I think it deserves an engine that make it more than "half-decent". Two-pass rendering (similar to what the original prince of persia did) could easily allow your random environments to have a "top-part" overlay for tile (x,y+1) to be drawn over the "bottom part" of tile (x,y). That would just help offering seamless environments.

But well, I have no time to offer for revisiting the engine you plan to use, so ... do for the best.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #28 on: October 27, 2011, 08:54:48 am
well, I don't have anything specifically set in stone yet, I just plan to make environments randomly generated, and to do this requires a bit of forgiving here and there as to precise placement of tiles. nature isn't very rigid in its organization of things and tends to have some parts overflow into other parts, etc, so if i can have some tiles still look partially decent in unplanned ways, then i'll be happy. tiles that can be walked behind , such as trees and cattails will probably be placed on a separate layer.

ryumaru, i'll probably get around to the tree issue, i havent touched it for over a year, and basically need to revisit what i want to do with it yet.. also need to polish up the swamp/pond stuff

thanks

Offline Fickludd

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #29 on: October 27, 2011, 07:39:52 pm
First of all I REALLY like this piece, and most of all the autumny colors - it's just like that outside in sweden at the moment (well not right now on account of it being night times =)).

Regarding the girls face I much prefer your version to Tourists. For some reason all the reference pictures posted are of models/moviestars, which I often find generically pretty and uninteresting! Whereas yours has much more of an arty personality. The other portraits are great as well.

Maybe as Ryumaru says you should fix the darkest color on the tree (bleeds because it's too dark), and in my opinion the red is just a little too saturated as well (but just a little - I didn't notice it until i zoomed in a bit and was shocked at how red it really was). What is the target resolution of the game?

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #30 on: October 28, 2011, 11:57:22 pm
not sure about exact resolution..thanks for the feedback. I'll probably get around the trees later..
here's a small update to knight and zombie

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #31 on: October 30, 2011, 12:48:12 am
The zombieface is very well rendered. I'm not crazy on the texture of the knight, but more importantly, why is he the only one without a darker palette entry? It makes him appear hazy and washed out in comparison to the other portraits. Also, metallic objects would most likely have the highest contrast in a given lighting situation so he is most deserving of some darker colors.

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #32 on: November 01, 2011, 08:16:21 am
good points ryumaru, i'll address those soon, and im not crazy on the texture either, i think ill remove it..
for those interested.. been trying to program some random generated maps.. here's what i have so far: its a bit sketchy but hopefully itll come together.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #33 on: November 02, 2011, 06:09:03 am
The grass looks feasible and creates an aesthetic that, while odd, is pleasing. However I think partial trees does nothing for it. For trees to work they should have the entire trunk and leaves, or you should create tiles that act as tops of tree stumps to always follow the top part of roots, but I could see that being difficult.  These first bits look promising though, looking forward to updates.

Perhaps trees could be on a separate layer and would always be intact ( perhaps only placement of the large tile cluster that is a tree would be random as opposed to the placement of all the parts?)

Offline Fickludd

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #34 on: November 02, 2011, 12:22:51 pm
That's pretty neat - is it a perlin noise based generator or some other algorithm?

@Ryumaru - I thing the idea is to only mark the locations of the trees by placing the stumps. My guess is that game characters will appear above everything on this layer, and tree tops will be generated randomly with another algorithm on yet another layer, so they appear above game characters (and eventually can become invisible to reveal what's underneath).

So yeah, cool stuff!

Offline AlexHW

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #35 on: November 02, 2011, 06:29:45 pm
yeah, that's the idea fickludd. I'm not doing perlin noise. I'm basically creating patches of various types of tiles, and then scanning through and blending them/changing single tiles based upon adjacent tiles. I still need to expand upon this and make sure things blend in every situation.
I copy pasted the tree from my mockup onto a screenshot to show how it might look in game to see if I'm no the right track.. Hopefully I'll be able to make the canopy of each tree a bit random.. I might change the style of the canopy too.. idk yet.

Offline ptoing

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #36 on: November 02, 2011, 06:48:46 pm
Tone down the noise. Everything is all noise, super tiny single pixel detail stuff EVERYWHERE. Does not help readability at all.
My eyes are just going X_x looking at this for too long.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Markus

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #37 on: November 02, 2011, 07:50:15 pm
I'm having a really hard time reading trees as trees D: the canopy just looks like a big turquoise mess. It would probably look great if there was only a lonely tree, but if you are planning on having 'em cluttered like this I think you should redo them.

Offline Arachne

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Re: AdventureGame Mockup

Reply #38 on: November 08, 2011, 04:55:34 pm
I did a little edit of the grass tiles. :) It's not perfect, but I wanted to try to make it a little more tranquil.



I found the palette a little tricky to work with, since it seems fairly random at the moment. I like a bit of hue variation, but there are such huge leaps. I think it could work if applied more sparsely, or toned down a little, but now it seems like it's added for the sake of style more than function.

I'm basically creating patches of various types of tiles, and then scanning through and blending them/changing single tiles based upon adjacent tiles. I still need to expand upon this and make sure things blend in every situation.

I don't really understand your approach. To me, it seems like you're trying to go for single-tile representations of everything, without transition tiles. Is the idea is that a single tile should function as a kind of universal transition tile between two tiles? I don't see how that's doable. I think this has potential, but while you're trying to go for a realistic style, I think what you need is something much more symbolic and simplified. I've seen this approach work well with two-color tiles, but as it is, I think you're trying to cram too much information into the tiles. I think there has to be more tile clusters (like 2x2 tiles) to convey larger elements, like ferns or whatnot, which are currently struggling to fit within their tile spaces without looking cramped.

What are you using to test and edit the tiles? It kind of seems like each tile is drawn to stand on its own, with little regard for the whole. The grid is also very noticeable in places, especially the grass. When you have such small tiles, I think great care has to be put into each pixel placement.

Overall, it seems like the aesthetics have taken a backseat to a somewhat confused approach. It wants to be small in size and simple to generate, but it also wants to convey complex information in a small space. I think you need to pick one or the other. ???