AuthorTopic: GR#195 - Project Entropy - Gameart, Conceptart  (Read 50216 times)

Offline Ryumaru

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GR#195 - Project Entropy - Gameart, Conceptart

on: January 17, 2012, 03:48:14 am

I'm currently in a class entitled " Alternative media exploration" the purpose which is for painters like me to explore other conceptual ways of relaying a message through photography/ film/ installation etc.  Over break I had been entertaining the idea of a game dealing with philosopy/ the universe with game boy color aesthetics- while also exploring paradoxes and illusions such as schrodingers cat and the impossible staircase as " glitches" in reality.

I had thought about creating animated " glitched" images of some bosses for the game as part of an installation when an online friend said he would be interested in programming a playable demo to be part of the installation; so here we are.

I have animations of the main character but I create them in game maker for mac which does not export as a .gif. I may post the strips later and anybody who wants can compile them for critique.

Right now everything is in gameboy green monochrome, but eventually the assets will get a pass of full color- the environment will progress through various palette limitations- from black and white to full ( 4 colors per tile) color.



Impossible staircase:



Schrodinger's Cat ( sketch):


Omega ( a recurring character of mine):


Void ( another recurring character that will personify black holes in game):


The installation critique is in 2 months so hopefully by that time there will be a playable demo including most of this content
« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 10:56:17 am by Ryumaru »

Offline Facet

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #1 on: January 17, 2012, 05:43:58 pm
Looks hella interesting Ryu, great rendering & pixel tech. I also love the gameboy aesthetic with an unhealthy passion ;)

Quote
...the idea of a game dealing with philosopy/ the universe
I know hyperbole is a pre-requiste for these sorts of things sometimes, but narrowing your scope a bit might prove helpful :P

Is the game going to be essentially a dialogue-heavy RPG? are the screen-sized characters portraits intended for cut-scenes or similar? they don't leave a lot of room for the character or anything much else if you're sticking with standard GB res.

Some stuff that looks a bit strange so far:
  • Omega's extra heads seem tacked on and not fully integrated anatomy-wise.
  • Void's upper pair of forearms are very long and the bis/tris very short.
  • Why are the former personified as giant bodybuilders and SD's cat so literally?
  • The cat's eyes are very close together

As always I'd love to see a mock-up of how all this is going to work in-game :D

Offline Helm

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #2 on: January 17, 2012, 05:55:40 pm
But what is the central theme you'll be trying to express? Philosophy/the universe doesn't say much. Visual illusions like the endless staircase and SD's cat have nothing in common, there's nothing illusionary about the latter.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #3 on: January 18, 2012, 01:42:10 am
Looks hella interesting Ryu, great rendering & pixel tech. I also love the gameboy aesthetic with an unhealthy passion ;)

Quote
...the idea of a game dealing with philosopy/ the universe
I know hyperbole is a pre-requiste for these sorts of things sometimes, but narrowing your scope a bit might prove helpful :P

Is the game going to be essentially a dialogue-heavy RPG? are the screen-sized characters portraits intended for cut-scenes or similar? they don't leave a lot of room for the character or anything much else if you're sticking with standard GB res.

Some stuff that looks a bit strange so far:
  • Omega's extra heads seem tacked on and not fully integrated anatomy-wise.
  • Void's upper pair of forearms are very long and the bis/tris very short.
  • Why are the former personified as giant bodybuilders and SD's cat so literally?
  • The cat's eyes are very close together

As always I'd love to see a mock-up of how all this is going to work in-game :D



To narrow things down, the game is a quest for enlightenment in a similar style of " Siddartha" by Hermann Hesse- and the more I learn about hinduism, it's time line is similar to how things would probably progress in game.
The game will not be using the GBC resolution, but the bosses max size are an acknowledgment of the reference.

Once the sprites go into the color stage I will deal with those issues, I believe the heads seem separated in part because of the strong shadow they are casting onto the neck structure and body, I may lessen it.
The characters of Omega and Void are giant bodybuilders firstly because thats how they were originally designed and they are from a different ( artistic) universe and are being put into this game. Think ff7 characters and disney characters in Kingdom hearts. Secondly I often use body types and anatomy to personify things- Omega is a special issue as he is a self portrait in some manner so the heads represent different states of mind etc; Void is suppose to be large and all consuming like a black hole, his multiple arms represent the strong gravitational pull that a black hole would have.

Helm: I may have answered that a bit in replying to Facet: The main character wanders through a personified universe battling or otherwise reacting to embodiments of time/ space/ gravity etc all the while discovering and dealing with " glitches" in reality or paradoxes such as the impossible staircase and Schrodinger's cat. They have nothing in common other than the fact that are somehow paradoxical in nature.

Offline st0ven

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #4 on: January 18, 2012, 05:14:35 am
really love the sketchiness of some of your larger characters (and what looks to be the main character, interesting design). to be honest i think id be more happy with this as a game concept (and even likely artistically) using this palette range.

I know youre trying to make void and omega big and scary and with some slight bit of perspective, but why are their arms always so massive on these types of characters that you draw? id rather see the mass placed into the lats and shoulders.

also, imo - you should keep your game loose and sketchy like this. i think focusing on going over detailed on the pixel tech could kill your project. its killed many a project for me unfortunately.

one last thing. i am not a fan of omega's middle face, likely because i feel like it should match the other two, which are far more interesting, or at least give it more of a jaw presence or something. maybe mandibles like an insects?

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #5 on: January 21, 2012, 12:02:54 pm
st0ven: Thank you very much ( the main character is the one in the cloak that also appears in the boss sketches for scale comparison, is that the one you're thinking of?)
To be honest I really like this palette range too; However I originally intended for the map to start with lower restrictions and slowly increase the range as you branched out to symbolize creation from simple to complex. I guess we'll see how that goes.

Would you mind giving me an edit on those guys? They're builds are based on my aesthetic preferences and it would be nice to see your take on them. Edits like back in the old days ;]

Do you think that such a level of rendering could hold up in game though? and through animation. I don't want to add so much detail that things get bogged down but I don't know if I can visualize some of this stuff in game as is.

Omega's middle face is supposed to look bland in comparison. It's the blank slate from which persona's extend ( the other two heads) and signifies itself as the " main" head.

Heres a quick mock up for you guys. this part of the map would be in grayscale, following simple black and white and before a monochromatic scheme and eventual " full" color. Let me know your thoughts.

Offline Corinthian Baby

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #6 on: January 21, 2012, 09:37:01 pm
Quite an interesting style. While the mini dither tiles contribute to the style, I'm wondering if it's overstated. I mean I guess it reads well, the environment is a desert with a big cliff formation to the right, giving the character color makes him readable too. I think if you toned down the dither tiles, or gave some more shape to them, it might help the rendering more, it looks a little too chaotic at first glance.

Your idea of the graphics getting more complicated as the game progresses, would that effect this chaotic dither, and forms would be more clearly rendered as you go?

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #7 on: January 21, 2012, 09:46:00 pm
No it would not affect the chaotic dither- I can definitely tell it's pushing it as is. This mock up is just a tile test- in the actual map the graphics would become more complex through color limitations and the "amount" of environment there is. Beginning very sparse with loosely defined forms to the more abundant concrete ones found here.

In the final map I will most likely clear some areas up- it's easy to have too much fun with something like this!

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #8 on: January 22, 2012, 04:53:07 am
Some new tile tests:





Also, some sprites and weapons. Including:
- hydrogen shield
- helium daggers
- lithium/ beryllium/ boron swords
- carbon shield

« Last Edit: January 22, 2012, 09:19:36 am by Ryumaru »

Offline pistachio

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #9 on: January 22, 2012, 09:50:18 am
Few minor things: the "B" in beryllium and boron still reads more as a "D". Not sure how to fix that, I don't know much about subpixelling, but you could resort to a lowercase "b" if all else fails. There's also a large square/rectangular "cluster" in the floating rock that grabs my attention, maybe more of a transition to the dark (right) side would help it seem like less of a rectangle. If possible, a bit of a shadow underneath the character could give it some grounding, which it lacks now.

Otherwise it's looking nice! :y:
« Last Edit: January 22, 2012, 09:54:03 am by pistachio »

Offline Facet

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #10 on: January 22, 2012, 07:38:12 pm
Beautiful Tiles, especially the second, Boktai-like example. I'm really looking forward to how you might go about applying colour here :D.

I very much enjoy glitchy effects/artifacts but one thing that strikes me here (and also here) is that deliberate, controlled manipulation on the pixel level is really the antithesis of the accidental, unpredictable nature of what you're endeavouring to capture here.

Have you considered applying pseudo glitch effects, common patterns in post-processing? You could ask your programmer to try scrambling, palette cycling and otherwise randomising how tiles are drawn in-engine, this could allow for lovely emergent stuff, different every viewing/playthrough and of course you could animate these effects on the fly.

I cleaned up the earlier character with what I meant about the heads looking tacked on (it was the comparative level of rendering) and also what I think st0ven meant regarding torso/arm imbalance and then aped a few effects that you might have a crack at; Base, layer offset, tile scrambled and scrambled palette swap.

« Last Edit: January 22, 2012, 07:47:17 pm by Facet »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #11 on: January 22, 2012, 10:44:09 pm
Pistachio:
- the periodic labels were just for you guys- I don't believe i'm going to make it explicitly known in the game that you are using weapons based on elements. It was just a creative way for me to design them and fit conceptually with the game



Facet: Thank you very much, I'm looking forward to color too ;]

While I get what you're saying, I see no reason to not make the pixel technique sound. The images will not always be glitched- and I think sometimes the beauty of a glitch comes from distortion of already " perfect" or " beautiful" things. If I were to slouch on technique with the thought it's just going to be glitched I think it would lose some of it's power.

That said your examples are EXACTLY what I want in game. If I may ask, how did you create those images? What program? I'm working on a mac here so I'm limited from some great small programs ( I miss you graphics gale and pro motion) but I have a toshiba I could get from home.

My supposed programmer hasn't been in contact with me much, I don't know if he's able to do this sort of thing but it would be great if he could. I wonder how this would affect collision detection and things of the sort?

The edit is great as well. The snake head is boss and getting those lats in there is nice too. Thanks for the comments everybody!

Offline Facet

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #12 on: January 22, 2012, 11:41:29 pm
Yeah, I love the highly detailed stuff and I meant it might be effective to script more of the glitchy effects on top of sound pixel technique ;D

My examples are all by hand, so to speak after having a look at some actual glitches. It's pretty simple stuff that you could easily do manually if you had to (basically just dicking about with the rectangular selection tool) but scripting them should be relatively simple to do and have the advantage of that de facto randomisation and malleability as I was talking about (maybe a real programmer could chime in here :P).

Edit - Ah, that was a bit blasé sorry, blame the hour :-[ I get what you mean now with the potential of the glitch to blur the lines from collision masks; that would definitely take some tinkering to get right. Glad my example was helpful, here's what I did -

  • Gave bestial heads full compliment of range, shortened ram's face & positioned snake's head at more of an angle, could have done this with the former also
  • Layered offset is just shifting sections an arbitrary amount in either direction; for tile scrambling I put up a 8x8 grid and Control-C/V'd that sucker. For the palette swap I copied the whole image, stuck it onto a separate layer underneath and selectively deleted the original.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 02:49:55 pm by Facet »

Offline Conzeit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #13 on: January 23, 2012, 06:18:09 pm
Hey there Ryu, long time no see.  :D

I've been watching the topic for a while...not really knowing how to comment.
Graphically I think you're doing really good, at first I was like "meh" but as you post your tilesets I get more and more interested, you make me want to try making some tilesets myself =) I havent pixeled in a while and I never really did tilesets but they have a sort of boktai appeal to them that really gets to me, and it fits with the whole glitchy atmosphere =).

One suggestion with the stairs....that triangular shape shows too clearly that it's a paradox. it's more effective to make the viewer/player suffer the effects of the paradox first and then reveal the visual illusion...Maybe if you made the stairs bigger, and you obscured with fog or by zooming in too close , then have the player go trough the loop once or twice frustrate him a little and THEN zoom out/clear the fog to reveal the illusion it would be far more effective. Think of the way this kind of thing is revealed in film such as this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PI-b9ye4RqY short, and...inception to some extent but they have far less fun with the concept so I wont link them :p.

In regards to the concept of the game, I feel at once excited that you take on a game with a clear meaning like this, but at the same time I'm not all that sure that the vision really connects and is coherent, like Helm already said.

Entropy is a law of thermodinamics, yes...and do you believe in it; do you think that it is what will really happen with the universe, that all the energy will be dissipated into heat? is THAT what the glitches represent? how does that connect to enlightenment and the hinduism vision of enlightenment you apparently are using for the game progression?

Why GBC, why a typical game progression with bosses and killing things? why does enlightenment look like going about and killing all the things that give a human mind a sense of cognitive dissonance?(paradoxes). There's nothing truly threatening about the schrodinger's cat to someone that is seeking enlightenment, so why is it a boss? going around the universe terminating all the paradoxes sounds more like a "war on paradoxes" or some kind of mindless crusade by an incredibly regressive mind that cannot accept being challenged, rather than an act of seeking enlightenment. I dont really see the connection to entropy either.

I'm saying this because if you're proposing this as an innovative way of expressing your art, so your goal is to show that the idea and the medium are meant to be together, and I dont think this is necesarily false but I think you need to figure some things out about this particulare structure you chose for it to work.

Now, I'm not necesarily saying that exploring enligthenment or paradoxes as glitches in a game is wrong, maybe you shouldnt have the guy really seek enligthenment, maybe he can be under that pretense but he can turn out to be the most royal asshole to ever live, or maybe just be a regular guy stuck in a horrible situation. Maybe you could have him still seek enligthenment but not fight paradoxes, instead you could do something akin to the Hastina Pura war thing, and have him fight vices. I often hear Indian gurus talk about negating all wicked and stupid things inside yourself, not by pretending they dont exist but by meditating on them and seeing them in all their stupidity until you're so disgusted by them you simply expel them from your being  completely, thus "negate" them. That could be a context in which you could keep the gamey kill everything progression and keep the enlightenment thing, but I just cant match fighting paradoxes with seeking enligthenment.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 07:43:30 pm by Conceit »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #14 on: January 24, 2012, 05:09:12 am
Good to see you Camus :]

Thats a great concept for the stairs, are you saying to up the scale to the point where each stair is around the height of the character? so he must climb then in fog until he realizes it's infinite?

Project entropy is just a catchy name. If you remember project Deadbird, I do not intend on titling a game deadbird- just another fancy code name so I can act like I'm a big shot game company keeping things secret. " Project Entropy" has little to do with things in game- I have thought of " titling" the game the delta symbol which is the symbol of entropy - only so the title screen is an echo of the first legend of zelda title sceen- a game that this project pays tribute to in some aspects.

Questions of " why gbc" and " why a typical game progression" really don't need explaining do they?. We can always be more conceptual in our media, but eventually we lose form. If I want to paint a painting about this- should it really stop me that painting has little to do with the universe? Our media will connect to the concept through our interpretation, I don't think any media is more suited than another to portray what I wish to portray.  But since you did ask, I have chosen my medium for multiple reasons:
- I enjoy the aesthetic and believe that digital work and pixel art scale lends itself to the idea of utilizing glitches- of which these glitches do lend themselves as an analogy to paradoxes ( glitches within reality or theory)

- for class, we must utilize media outside of traditional painting, and I decide to use my pixel art skills to do so

-  a game allows a level of interactivity that is far different from traditional painting. I am also interested in replicating the lonely, mystic quality one feels in game such as the original legend of zelda, or more recently shadow of colossus.

Note that not all bosses in the game are paradoxes- and the  paradox bosses are non violent unless you intend to harm them. Battling the shcrodingers cat will allow you to see it's multiple states- you are to be the poison that has the chance of being released in it's chamber. Other bosses such as " Void" are naturally violent- not through some higher moral evil, but because a black hole is an extremely strong, destructive force.

"but I just cant match fighting paradoxes with seeking enlightenment."

How is battling( challenging ) a boss ( paradox) and defeating ( understanding) not creating some sort of connection with seeking enlightenment?

Fighting vices would instantly make this game about morality, which I do not want it to be. While morality is an important issue, I think there are things much higher up in the universe to be explored - the game player will always do what he thinks is right and that is enough I believe for this game in that regard.

While I do have an intended " ending" for this game, it should be known that most of it is just about exploration. There is no princess to save, and few if any have searched- and obtained enlightenment, and this game is no different. If you explore the game map and decide that you are puzzled and wish to give your energy to some other cause, that is the same as winning ( ending) the game ( quest for enlightenment). For many, more earthly matters such as love, family, a career, and dealing with the here and now is just as worthy to devote time to as sitting in a room for hours on end in the lotus position.

the problem with such commentary is there is no way for me to spill all I have thought of and have intended for the game, and on this forum you guys must give critique and commentary assuming I haven't done these things because I have not showed them to you( how else would you know I have addressed or contemplated these issues?). All I can show are mock ups and tile tests etc for the playable demo that I hope to have for the installation project for class.

Offline Cure

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #15 on: January 24, 2012, 07:18:54 pm
I find the thesis of the game a bit strange, it works fine as a storyline, but the entire idea of enlightenment as a goal to be achieved is flawed, from the philosophical perspective of Buddhism. It then becomes a desire, an act of the will, that one assumes can be attained through their efforts, and held as an object. The spiritual practices of Buddhism are obviously efforts, but their goal is to encourage favorable conditions, to invite enlightenment rather than reach out and take it. So 'questing for enlightenment' makes for a fine game but would be a pitfall in the actual philosophical system.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #16 on: January 24, 2012, 08:39:27 pm
Cure I don't know much about Buddhism although it is slightly related to Hinduism. In Hinduism enlightenment or "moksha" is a state of mind or a transcendence into the fabric of the universe" Brahman". This is more what I mean by enlightenment- with the character deciding to pursue this through exploration of the game world, where defeating bosses is an analogy for understanding paradoxes, dealing with epic forces, and are stepping stones to the end of the game. There will not be some triforce object or legendary crystal that the player is seeking.
Reading over again what you are saying; at least in Hinduism this is something that is actively pursued through yoga. I don't believe there is too much of a difference, especially in this context whether enlightenment is pursued, or actions are done to create favorable conditions for enlightenment.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2012, 08:43:45 pm by Ryumaru »

Offline Conzeit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #17 on: January 25, 2012, 10:48:22 pm
I dont know how it is in your art school, but in film school you did have to justify the format you chose to express your idea, and I imagine if you go for something as extraneous to painting as gameplay, you should have a good reason WHY gameplay is elemental to the idea. I kind of get the feel this doesnt really matter and you just want us to comment on the pixelart and how you could do the glitch effect on it...is this the case?

Ryu, enligthenment is a loaded, loaded word. What I'm trying to get to is you dont need to make it about enligthenment to make a game where optical illusions and confusing aspects of scientific understanding are ethier personified or represented as game glitches. in your response to me it seemed like you werent so much going for spiritual enligthenment, you mention some people just get a job a car and a wife and whatnot, and you mention the idea of exploration...that just doesnt sound like enlightenment at all enligthenment is about transcending suffering, not accumulating the things everyone normally desires. But then you reply to cure and again you textually say you ARE talking about spiritual enligthenment...it just makes me more convinced enligthenment really just isnt very related at all.
 
I kinda get the feeling you want to make a  game in a world where optical illusions and science conondrums protrayed as glitches, and every once in a while you have a god of war-like fight with scientific phenomena of the universe....that sounds great but I just dont see how you graft enligthenment on top of that.

a BIG problem with games today is that storywise they're supposedly about something, but if you look at what they make you do in the game they're actually about something entirely diferent. This cognitive dissonance keeps many people from considering them art...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=otyXtzLNxoI this is a good explanation of what I'm trying to say, and this is something inde dev Jhonatan Blow (the Braid guy) haprs on over and over in a bunch of lectures.  Spiritual enligthenment and killing paradoxes just doesnt match for me, even if it's a metaphore for understanding. Unerstadning the universe is a scientist's journey not the journey to enligthenment, so I think at the moment your concept suffers from this cognitive dissonance.

Enligthenment is an inner journey, and it is mostly about accepting the present moment and letting go of all your prejudices, it has very little to do with fighting anything, or understanding confusing scientific phenomena. What little I thought could be related to fighting in a journey of enligthenment would be eliminating your own inner vices, because they keep you distracted from the real source of completeness and happyness which as you said is brahman.

What I'm saying is...you have many options for justifying why this guy is exploring this glitchy world...he could be frustated scientist that became a gamedev and later went into a coma or went mad or whatever...I dont know...but you keep mentioning enligthenment and the more you do it the more I dont see the connection at all.

I linked a short when I made a sugestion about the penrose steps
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PI-b9ye4RqY
I think as simple as it is it works better conceptually, the guy isnt seeking anything special, he's just stuck in a bizzare situation and is desperate to get out, that's all you really need to know. I think you're better off doing something like that than trying to define something as undefinable as enligthenment...you could still have the character go trough all sorts of learning experiences but it's less loaded if it's from the perspective of normal guy stuck in strange glitch world

EDIT: oh, about the penrose stairs...I meant making the stairs longer so it isnt easy to see the whole illusion in one screen, not necesarily making the steps themselves bigger....although that sounds like it might be fun :p. Basically I'm just saying you get more out of the illusion if the player goes trough the stairs and doesnt know they loop, and then you reveal that they do and he hasnt been going anywhere. so it'd be good if the first time he goes trough it he doesnt see the whole image. I proposed two ways to hide the whole image, the first was to simply have zoomed in on part of the image at the beggining and zoom out later to reveal the whole structure. But since we're working with pixelart we dont really want to zoom much right? so I thought maybe you could have one of those fogs that cover everything within a radius of more than two meters of the player, and remove it later on to reveal that you've been going in a loop.

I just thought that maybe you could match the zoom with the glitch thing, by having the screen distorted as if the aspect ratio had been loaded wrong, maybe intentionally have it load with big tallpixels so that you're seeing only part of the screen....and as you climb the staircase maybe you find a puzzle that has the game actually load in real size and you realize the staircase was looped. You got a good game concept play with...these illusions lend themselves to being represented in games.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2012, 11:16:37 pm by Conceit »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #18 on: January 26, 2012, 03:52:34 am
It was a little forward to say those questions don't need explaining- my logic was that the medium will fit the subject at a certain level whether I justify it or not. For example, human excrement will always fail at attempting to depict the beauty of the blue sky whether an artist tries to justify it or not.
    It is not that I wish for comments only on the pixel art ( although more comments on that would be helpful) but like you go on to say, enlightenment is an extremely loaded word, there are an infinite amount of questions you guys could ask, assuming I haven't thought about them ( and some I haven't) but most are things that are internal and it would be difficult, or at the very least extremely time expending to answer them all.
    As I said before, gameplay simply allows for a different kind and level of interactivity than traditional painting. I'm sure you know of, or can imagine what I talk about when I describe the " mystic loneliness" of games such as legend of zelda and shadow of the colossus. I personally find a similar feeling whenever I attempt to broaden my knowledge or really sit down and think about the " bigger questions". For me it's a complex feeling- partly a form of dread ( that certain loneliness) but also excitement as you explore the map ( find a trail of questions/ answers that seem to lead somewhere).
   
   Cure specifically noted spiritual enlightenment in buddhism philosophy so naturally my reply was to that. However I would say that scientific enlightenment- or a complete understanding of how the universe is not too far off from spiritual enlightenment- both are the end result of searching- externally or internally. If I were to describe my ultimate intents for the game I would have to say that the actual gameplay falls more on the external, scientific side ( with the game map and characters becoming personified versions of things[ for whatever reason I've been interested in personification lately]) while such a search is of course a metaphor, or at least relatable to spiritual enlightenment( can video games be meditative? It might seem silly but hardcore level grinding in an rpg does seem to take you away from yourself in some slight manner).
    Would the word " purpose" fit better for you? if ANYTHING I want the game to be about developing or finding one's own purpose. I personally don't know if there is any purpose to our existence ( I'd like to believe there is) but I do know that at some level, if you don't create, unearth, or otherwise decide your own personal purpose, you may be a " wandering spirit"  with a whole bunch of questions and not a lot of happiness once your life has ended. In " project Entropy" the character is to be thrown in this personified universe without so much as a hint on where to go or what to do- If I had an infinite amount of time, resources, and energy, I would probably expand the game to include areas that develop the themes of love, sexual desire, familial ties, career success et cetera- to allow players that gravitate towards those things seek them out, and for them that would be " winning the game" as much as the " intended" route of understanding. While I have shown here a lot of boss sketches you must understand I am me. I'm the guy that used to draw overly muscular demons all the time; and I often still do. I had content, so I decided to show it. That does not necessarily mean that is all the game is " about". I enjoyed the fact that in Legend of Zelda, ( and even games like megaman) that there is no linear order( in the case of LoZ, some are of higher difficulty, but there are multiple dungeons that you can play out of order) for the bosses- and for project entropy, I don't even know if the bosses will be necessary to defeat in order to " advance" in the game ( I apologize for using so many quotations, but it seems appropriate to separate these words) but seeing as how they are personifications of challenges, paradoxes, or otherwise epic natural forces, their defeat would ultimately aid you along the way.

   I believe at this point, a lot of your reply is stemming from my misuse of the word " enlightenment" I apologize. Ones own purpose, and a more broad vision of enlightenment ( an answer to the " big question") to include, or not be weary of both scientific and spiritual versions of the same word may be more appropriate.

"you could still have the character go trough all sorts of learning experiences but it's less loaded if it's from the perspective of normal guy stuck in strange glitch world"
For all intensive purposes, that's more or less what this is. I have never been one to be extremely adamant about a rock hard message in my work because some portion of the audience is unfailingly not going to " get it" or otherwise interpret things differently than I intended- the latter of which I embrace because a piece of art is much more special when there is a connection between you and the piece, and is not an artist shouting his opinion at you. This is not to say that I do not have intentions with my work, but sometimes intentions are hard to vocalize, after all there is a reason I work in a visual art, just as sound artists wish to express things that cannot be seen.

to go back to this quote from you:
"you could still have the character go trough all sorts of learning experiences but it's less loaded if it's from the perspective of normal guy stuck in strange glitch world"

I have released my intention here in this forum by necessity, but as I said above, I do not wish to shout any message to my audience. I wish only to aesthetically and visually illustrate things such as that " mystic loneliness" or explore my fascination and appreciation of glitch art while hinting at or otherwise allowing the character to search for a purpose in this game map that he has been thrown into- without a princess to save. ( many non gamers mistakingly call " Link" " zelda" since it is the " legend of zelda" if I recall it's not explicitly stated that you are trying to save a princess, unless you happened to read the guide book, am I right? Well take that feeling of not really knowing what you're doing and happening upon dungeons, puzzles, and epic forces, and just subtract the princess- and the triforce for that matter, and replace them with a purpose of your own).

I really enjoy your idea about zooming in on the stairs; when I created the staircase illusion, I was honestly worried about the technicality of rendering it is isometric, and was not paying too much attention to scale. Embracing that expanded resolution " as if it has been loaded wrong" is an interesting idea and like you say is something that may be fun to play with. I do enjoy the self reference of the visual acknowledging this is in a digital world- a game.

I do not wish to seem unappreciative of these comments and will try to respond to them as best as I can, However I do also enjoy comments on the art and I will hopefully add some mockups of inventory screens and more game-y things in that nature- I'm having a difficult time envisioning those currently because my decided resolution makes areas such as weapon and item design hard to elaborate on a small scale and I obviously want to show those on some sort of more rendered level specifically because of references such as the elements of the periodic table in the weaponry- but at the same time, even the idea of going to a " different screen" for some reason irks me as if it is counterproductive to some parts of the feeling or mood I wish to express. I also am not sure how to include text into this. Perhaps it could be a completely " silent" game, but there may be things I'd like to express that are hard to illustrate without text- perhaps making it glitchy and seemingly incidental is a possibility.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 04:02:48 am by Ryumaru »

Offline Helm

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #19 on: January 26, 2012, 04:29:45 pm
"with the game map and characters becoming personified versions of things[ for whatever reason I've been interested in personification lately"

I don't know what 'personification' is exactly, but portraying a phenomenon as say, entropy, with a symbol of a scary humanoid form is not really personifying it. A person has a complex psyche as you well know. Giving something limbs and a head doesn't lend it a psyche. What would entropy feel? What would he/she be sad about? What would make it happy? Do you plan to address any of these things? If yes, you could do worse than read Gaiman's Sandman comics for ideas as to how to do this. If not, you're not personifying things, you're just representing an abstract idea with a drawing of a humanoid monster.

"you must understand I am me. I'm the guy that used to draw overly muscular demons all the time; and I often still do"

I accept you as you are, but I sense some inner turmoil on this point. What you've posted here seems to me mostly driven by the same desire to drow demon forearms, with the meta-concept of Journey of Understanding tacked on after the fact so you feel less bad (?) fo some reason for having drawn demon forearms again. Does this make sense? I feel you must move resolutely towards either one end or the other. Either make a game about the journey to understanding without drawing demon forearms once in the whole game, or forget the journey of understanding and draw hella lots of demon forearms in your art until you realize what exactly it is that draws you so much towards them, and deal with that in your art. There is no middle path that will produce anything of much truth, I believe.

From a game design standpoint, right now you're not exactly designing. You are brainstorming higher ideas that do not seem to be connected with gameplay much. Camus/Conceit is right to link you the Blow stuff on the matter of a game having a theme, and a subtext, and the mechanics must enforce the theme and comment on the subtext. If there's one thing that is not a journey of understanding at all, that is the toil of a jrg. If there's one thing that isn't about forging your own path, is these masked-linearity metroid/zelda/vanias where the only eventual way to get from point A to point Z is if you hit the major nodes in between. A game about exploration and wonderment is Skyrim, for example. The mechanics support its theme of tourism completely. A game about eternal toil until one reaches stillness (or do they?) is Dark Souls, for another example. Every mechanic in Dark Souls supports what the game is about.

If you really must make a videogame which doesn't just reflexively come to its creator (like say, Mario, or Sonic. These games weren't designed to be about anything concrete, just vague ideas of what would be fun to do) then I think your choice of theme/subtext and graphics/mechanics so far is wildly out of step.

I'm not sure how far in you're going to go with designing this and how much will eventually be implemented, but it's interesting as a purely academic persuit on its own.

Here's suggestions on both aesthetic and practical concerns if you *are* commited to turning in a complete videogame for your project:

* Make 2 complete levels, different themes, one boss for each level, minor new gameplay for each level. Don't make more, you'll just swamp yourself. If you can make the art assets for each level in a week's worth each, you can do this.

* Keep to very simple zelda-esque gameplay. Don't bother with levelling, xp, many different interchangable weapons. Having 2-3 abilites that are fun will be fine.

* If you want to be clever with ideas such as infinite staircases and quantum states, you can do that briefly and you don't have to justify it a lot. Let the game be a game.

* If you can, do not draw a single muscly demon for the whole game, see how that feels.

* Don't labour the art. See how much art you need, make it fast, and refine it if you have time at the end. Don't make pixelation threads for every little thing, just draw as well as you can at the moment and you'll find out at the end even if a few tiles or enemies are not as great looking as others, the whole thing will look better as a sum than as parts.

* Keep to NES animation styles, 2 frames are enough for most gameplay-essential things!

If you're desperately in need of a higher concept for your game that you want to reflect in gameplay, perhaps, sadly, the issue of predestination and determinism is the only one that you'll have time to explore for such a project. Levels, stages, start and end points and nothing else but what the programmer decreed is the only natural subtext to such a videogame. Shadow of the Colossus which you say you love is exactly about that too, even if it's a bigger game.

Offline jams0988

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #20 on: January 26, 2012, 06:27:12 pm
Quote
* Don't labour the art. See how much art you need, make it fast, and refine it if you have time at the end. Don't make pixelation threads for every little thing, just draw as well as you can at the moment and you'll find out at the end even if a few tiles or enemies are not as great looking as others, the whole thing will look better as a sum than as parts.
Excellent advice for everybody. "Leave well enough alone."
It seems most people (including myself) have a very hard time following it, though, which is why so many amateur projects die before even coming close to completion.

Offline Conzeit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #21 on: January 27, 2012, 04:30:48 am
Great post by Helm! I was actually worried I might discourage you with all my yammering about the enligthenment thing...I do get sidetracked  :mean: but Helm gave you a much more rounded and practical advice....cant help but wonder what entropy would be like...I think he would be an asshole  :crazy: never liked the idea :p

I hammered on the enligthenment thing because if you're thinking like that wether or not you specifically say it's about enligthenment it'll show in your art...specially if you're not really clear on what enligthenment means or dont have anything specific to say about it. I've done it several times and in my experience it just comes out as pretentious bullshit...that's why you all havent seen any of it :p the feeling really really blows.

The predestination thing fits with the glitch thing like a glove, people doing "speed runs" of games routinely exploit glitches to escape the game designer's hold...who could be that that Void guy of yours, he seems pretty fitting for a Demiurge false god type of role.

as for the GUI thing you're wondering about....I'd do something primal looking, simple cavepainting symbols like spirals and whatnot, same for the text a big CAPITAL font that seems fingerpainted.

My favorite inventory is MetalGearSolid1's where you just hold the shoulder button, scroll to the weapon you need, release and BAM done. no cumbersome inventory managing. Visually you could do the inventory like a symbol popping up over the guy's head as if he were thinking about it...have a thought balloon around it if it strikes your fancy.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2012, 04:42:14 am by Conceit »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #22 on: January 30, 2012, 05:54:52 am
Helm: It goes without saying that at the very least in the inception of these characters, and their development as I refine their design, personalities develop as well and are tailored to the concepts they are to represent in game. I have briefly seen Sandman before and would like to read it- Maybe I can find some used issues on ebay.

On the matter of " demon forearms" I can only say that your mode of thinking towards my work is inherently limited because of the fact that often what I show here are these common things.
http://chrispariano.blogspot.com/
My blog shows various examples of school and personal work- much of it very far from demon forearms. I find it a bit shortsighted and offensive that you think this entire creative process is to cover up, or expound upon liking to distort human anatomy. I've had just as much fun, if not more, with the development of the tileset- exploring the creation of a more organic environment ( taking away some of the formulaic appearances of some tile work) while Ironically bringing attention to the 8x8 tile grid.

Why for you is there no allowance of a middle ground between a decent concept and demon forearms? Would it really make sense to render epic physical forces with anorexic limbs? If I were a regular deviant art poster who literally had hundreds of images solely about this subject matter I could see that, as a way of personal growth, that you might wish for me to branch out; but this is not the case. Environment work and economic tile usage has inspired me much more, especially in my later pixel " career" than demon sprites ever have. There is a lot of work that goes un-shown and while I don't expect you to be able to see the works on my hard drive from Greece, I do ask for the benefit of the doubt that demonic musculature is not 100%, or even 50% of my subject matter.

I have no argument against this currently not being game design, what I have brought here is a work in progress. Last year I attended a game design lecture where the speaker noted story based creation and mechanic based creation, and I am certainly in the story based mode- with ideas of the overall scenario and how I want them to pan out, while finding mechanics to make it a playable experience. Your post has gotten me to scale down the scope of the game, especially for the playable demonstration I hope to have for the installation. Especially in this media I agree that the sum is better than a display of various well pixeled assets. I've been working on an actual design document and have tried to take your points into account.  With how expansive the idea originated, I couldn't boil it down to the two levels you suggested but I believe what I have currently written is far more concise due to your suggestions.

Your final comment especially rings true given the deadline for this project. I would say that with the creation of randomly generated maps and other features that a game would not necessarily have to be about predestination ( especially if one to were include random outcome multiple endings and things of that nature) but for this project, a smaller, linear concept will be more successful. I am working on ideas to make the game experience as non linear as possible with things such as randomized, or at least somehow changing or otherwise uniquely developed game maps- but I have taken the demo in a slightly different direction that deals with cyclical nature- where the main character's fate is to set off a chain of events that destroys and recreates the universe to have him born again. I will show the design document here once it is in a complete form.

Conceit: Perhaps we will give Void some of those characteristics. :]

I REALLY like the idea of inventory as thought bubbles, as there are less than 10 items to appear in game. I've created some inventory images that use the concept that I will show soon, I'm interested in your thoughts about it- currently I am relatively satisfied with it, thank you!

The aesthetic of the font does not worry me as much as how to implement it. I don't know if traditional text box is how I want to see it. I've been throwing around the idea in my head of the text as " trash" tiles that imbed themselves within the environment so that the text doesn't become another " layer". If that falls through I may perhaps settle for a more glitched approach to the common text box- which could be nice as I would be able to alter surrounding tiles and perhaps even the way the text appears to indicate tone, something that is not common in most text applications.

Thank you both for dedicating time to give me honest opinions and helpful suggestions.

Offline Helm

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #23 on: January 30, 2012, 04:27:57 pm
I'm sorry if I offended. I've seen your blog, you're quite the painter. My interest is not in characterizing demon forearms as bad or good but to highlight it to you that I am sensing that you are conflicted about subject matter. And this conflict shows in what you're doing for this project. Why are demon forearms "common things"? Is a self-portrait less a common thing? I think demon forearms are very important, and what I'm urging for you is to work it out why and how. Just to be aware of what you're doing, not that what you're doing is bad or wrong.

Again, on the issue of symbols versus characterization, I actually suggest you do not characterize them at all, keep them as symbols. I'd choose different symbols to demons, personally, but still, symbols. I don't think you'll have the time to write prose for the project if you're also doing the art. I'd keep it simple. As your teacher explained the two 'paths' (well, your teacher was simplifying but still) of game design, I'd keep it more game and less story. Simple. The Void is an enemy. That throws gravity holes at you to kill you. This is enough characterization/thematic consistency imo. I wouldn't have a lengthy discussion text scroll with The Void where he would go 'woe is me, woe is you' etc. First that takes a great writer to write, second it takes extra time.

Just that you are seeking a middle ground between a decent concept and demon forearms tells me that these things are in conflict. Yes it would totally make sense to render epic physical forces without bodybuilder arms! Just making them big and making them live forever is enough! Did you notice any huge pronounced bodybuilder biceps on the petty gods in Shadow of The Colossus? Had that game's art director have a hangup with bodybuilder arms and put them in there, would you say the game would have a different vibe?

But again, I am not saying no to demon forearms. I am saying either A. explore PHYSICALITY to its extreme and work yourself out, or B. explore the realm of Ideas (where the concept of this game seems to reside) to its extreme and work that out. They're fundamentally at odds, and even if you want to have a playful friction between them, you first need to do step A and step B.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #24 on: January 30, 2012, 09:50:56 pm
I agree that a generous script is far behind what I have time for in this project and I will not be going that route. Any characterization will be intrinsically shown to higher or lesser extents through my rendering of these bosses or symbols and by the very selection of their purpose ( switching the placement of rolls between Omega and Void without changing anything else would alter a great deal of the players perception of them I would think).

The lecture was not about more game or more story, as any game can come to be roughly equal parts, but was about how it was conceived; finding an interesting game mechanic and then finding a story to fit, or having a narrative you wish to make interactive, and this project is the latter. Now as you have been talking about, and I agree- the focus should be stressed on the interactivity- because without it, the narrative cannot be expressed in the first place.

You slightly dodged my question. Would a sickly, unhealthy body with stick thin appendages be a great representation of epic physical forces? One Colossi in particular, while he doesn't have biceps in the same manner that my characters do, has the stature of a " bodybuilder" amplified even to the point of diminishing his lower body to accentuate the structure of his shoulders.
http://www.wired.com/news/images/full/colossus03_f.jpg
The reason he doesn't have " biceps" is because he was designed to be a sentient piece of architecture- an inverted dungeon as I believe it was said. This is a reply to the Legend of Zelda series with the boss ultimately linked to, but within a dungeon.
So while there is no bicep, there is the idea of power represented through enormous anthropomorphic structure, which is what I am doing here.

If I were to justify my use of musculature in this context I would make connection between two points. The fact that musculature has evolved to do a good job of becoming as efficient and " perfect" as possible at what it does, through the synergy of flexion and adduction and how near infinite ranges of motion are created by a finite amount of muscles. This " perfection" is not far from the intrinsic harmony of the universe. The fact that Albert Einstein could create an equation no more than an inch long of appropriately sized symbols that does a wonderful job of describing the fabric of space time is in, what I see as, a very direct connection to how the human body creates movement through efficient means.

Now, if your problem is with the fact that I am not completely putting my efforts into describing THAT specific concept in this piece, I can only say that for now, that concept is a character in this novel- where as later that concept may be the novel with other characters to populate it. I personally don't see a problem with that as long as one subject is clearly subordinate to the other- which I think will undoubtedly be evident after the game's completion.

As you said before, this is something that will be more successful in it's sum than by it's parts, and all of this discussion has literally stemmed from two 160x144 pixel depictions of intended bosses for the game. Perhaps as I post more content, especially more practical things such as actual dungeon facades and gameplay elements it might be more clear that this is not demon forearms battling against narrative, but quietly existing within it?

Offline Helm

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #25 on: January 30, 2012, 10:20:18 pm
Fair enough. Looking forward to progress and assets. Don't mind if I don't give a lot of pixel specific critique for these because as I said, I think being timely is the priority here. But we can discuss on a post-mortem level after you've turned in the project, it'll be much more illuminating for you, and also, it might result in a 1.1 ver of the game, whereas too much critique now might result in no game at all.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #26 on: February 01, 2012, 09:01:23 am
Here is a rough draft of the design document; not well organized but gives a general overview of everything planned
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1zYBzpAKs_UyjLUt8PX-sauIbdRu63SjiTXtrpGbvSN8/edit?hl=en_US

Thought bubble inventory( idea courtesy of conceit)


Unstoppable Force


Immovable Object


What I have planned for these two " dungeons" is the slightly standard switch puzzle where an array of switches may alter up to two variables ( the sides of the immovable object, and the direction of the mirrors around the unstoppable force) the goal of which is to completely expand the immovable object ( the additions on each side won't be there in the beginning, I plan to have them come out from the ground) and direct the mirrors so that the unstoppable force is unleashed and directed to aim at the immovable object. This is sequence is hinted at in the design on the immovable object's wall; do you think that is too overt? or will it possibly help people who don't know what the hell they're doing?

Offline Conzeit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #27 on: February 01, 2012, 07:53:15 pm
the new screens are looking very very good...like the old ones but more so with the added colors. =D

The thought bubble thing is looking great...to be honest I kinda got the idea from the way you can switch weapons in megaman 9-10 where the weapon symbol appears above megaman...but you've made it fit your game a lot better =D.

Obviously no UI is the simplest UI (a good example of that were the 2D oddworld games) but of the games which do have an UI the most unobtrusive UI I know of is that of SoulReaver 1 http://i1-news.softpedia-static.com/images/reviews/large/soulreaver2pc_001-large.jpg it's a healthbar represented as a spiral.It could've just as well have been a traditional healthbar, but somehow the fact that it is a caveart-ish symbol makes it more simple in my mind because it helps you get inmersed in the mystical gameworld, which I think also works for your game and that is why I suggested caveart styled UI.

just one thing...are you sure the unmoveable object should well...move? even if you're just expanding on it...you're still making unmoveable things move, by making them rise from the ground...it makes you think whatever is pulling or pushing those parts out of the ground necesarily is stronger than the unstoppable force :p maybe it could appear as if it was phasing in from another dimension...or maybe it's on another frequency of existance and you tune it into existance...something like that which doesnt involve moving :p

you mentioned something about the unmoveable object's shape being too obvious a tip about what to do...I dont think it is because I have no idea what you have to do in the puzzle :p

There are some things I dont understand in the unstoppable force screen, is the unstoppable force being generated on the middle of the circle or is it falling on it?...it kinda looks like that octorock looking thing next to the guy is projecting it. I do know that it reminds me A LOT of the "purify" screen in the boktai games :p  intentional? I think that it's crucial to keep a mysticism to the unstoppable force, and to do so it would be ideal that in it's initial state it is coming into a screen which doesnt reveal it's origin or where it's going, and it is impossible to go to a screen where you do...I think the less you show of how something unstoppable works the better.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2012, 08:02:17 pm by Conceit »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #28 on: February 01, 2012, 08:32:44 pm
Wow... That is the single greatest lapse of thought I have had in the project x] the immovable object cannot move! I guess the original conception was to have it become more " complete" to accept the directed unstoppable force.
The unstoppable force is to be a dragon or serpent of light that comes out from the ground, and purposefully yes, it does not have a visible end especially in the first times of seeing it. It is currently just sketched out- maybe have a cliff edge in the ground to signify that?
I've only seen that purify screen once or twice but I see the connection

On the immovable object, I was not talking about its shape giving away the puzzle, but if you look at the design of its center there are yin and yang symbols with links between the 4 pieces of the immovable object and the 6 mirrors surrounding the unstoppable force. I will most likely have to visually develop how the puzzle will work to see if that is too overt.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #29 on: February 13, 2012, 08:33:47 pm

Hey guys coming in here with a short iPhone update specifically about the immovable object dungeon. I can see how the design in my previous post is confusing; it is supposed to emulate a long shield on its side. The sketch above is another possibility I'm entertaining that seeks to be more of a fortress while still using the long shield motif. Please let me know if one design appears more successful than the other and if you think it matters for the game
« Last Edit: February 13, 2012, 09:16:17 pm by Ryumaru »

Offline Conzeit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #30 on: February 14, 2012, 04:48:15 pm
I'mma be quick Ryu, personally I don't think the old one is confusing and even if it were I think an unmovable object can afford to be a little mystifying. The new one kinda reminds me of something I've seen a lot on stuff like LOTR, such as Sauron's crown and it also looks a bit flimsy for an unmovable object. I see no reason to change the old design :p

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #31 on: April 14, 2012, 10:18:40 am
   A young wanderer woman draped in a young gray cloak traveled across four stagnant sands. Except one sand was not so stagnant as the wind blew there. In another the rain would soak the granules and create lively patterns. In another the sand would turn to rock and atop two statues were bridges and growth. In another the heat was so great that glass was often found.
   As Wander traveled through the winds she happened upon a green apple stuck within a spot of shade, where the wind would relax, and added it to her belongings. It's hue awkwardly displaced it from the arid surroundings. Looking now for a place to rest her unresponsive limbs, Wander crawled to the rock face that produced the shade and climbed to a cozy surface. The surface was cozy because it was well worn by an old raven that made it's home there and the raven upon returning to it's spot saw Wander and thought her for dead. Raven cawed once and then bit the ear of the young woman, waking and startling her. Raven's feathers were of charcoal, the hue awkwardly displaced itself from the arid surroundings.
   What are you doing here at my home?

Legs… my legs started to fail me and I reached this spot and found it suitable to rest. I found it worn but was unaware that it was home to anyone still.

   As wander lifted her body to better converse with Raven the green apple fell from the fold in her cloak.

   May I have that green apple?It makes my coat appear all the more healthy. I suppose my home can fit us both.
   
   Wander offered up the green apple without hesitation, feeling no ownership towards it as mere happenstance lead her to such a thing in the first place. Raven was satisfied with her kindness and allowed her a bite from it and motioned her to resume resting. Raven's cawing awoke Wander after the next day had begun.
   I have gifts for you, Wander. If you would bring me more green apples it would suit me to exchange them for these gifts. Look to the rain and fetch me one.

   The rain beaded upon the surface of the apple that did not appear green in the rain, but was so in the arid landscape. Raven told the young woman to rest after fetching the apple and did not caw when the sun rose, allowing Wander to awaken on her own to find a canister full of water that she could take on her journey.
   
   Look to the statues and bridges and fetch me one.

   Many bridges were broken, but one connected to the statues where there was growth and another apple that did not appear green among the statues, but was so in the arid landscape. Wander rested after fetching the apple and Raven allowed her to take a bite of it in the morning.
   
   Look to the heated sands and fetch me one.

   Wander glistened under the dreadful sun and her soles bled from the glass strewn about, finding another apple that did not appear green among the glass, but was so in the arid landscape. Wander rested after fetching the apple and Raven cawed nervously in the morning to awake the young woman.

   These green apples make my coat appear quite healthy and I am grateful you brought them to me. I have for you the feathers and talons of my wife, who got ill from a blackened apple. You can fashion the feathers to your cloak and use the talons to help you climb.

   Wander was sullen as Raven nudged the feathers and talons towards her.

What is the matter, do you not like my gifts?

You used to have a wife? I can't reach my husband and I'm sure he is worried of me.

Ah! the man with the long dark hair! I can reach him and tell him that you are safe. My wife's feathers and talons will keep you from harm.

Raven and Wander rested together during the night and traveled with purpose the next day: Raven to go to the husband of the young woman, and Wander to the next place she was needed.

   Raven found her husband and excitedly tried to tell him of his wife's well being. However the man could not hear Raven as well as Wander did and could only figure the speech for caws. The man grew angry at the cawing Raven, taking the charcoal creature as a sign that his wife was dead; and as a matter of release and revenge, killed Raven.



« Last Edit: April 14, 2012, 10:22:46 am by Ryumaru »

Offline Rydin

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #32 on: April 16, 2012, 10:32:48 pm
Your greyscale map (in reply #5).

This did not read as a desert to me as it did for Corinthian Baby. I think maybe 20% of that map looks like rocky surfaces, and the rest looks like a mess.

Consider this area:

After making a generous educated guess, I would say it's a shallow valley.  But if you, as the artist, are doing your job, I shouldn't have to guess at what I'm looking at.

The tiles consisting of only dither, as they sit, do not convey really any information to cue viewers in on the sort of substance they're looking at.
If it were my piece, I would maybe use these dither tiles like you've got to slowly transition between two different substances. But that's it.
You can say more than a checkerboard in the same space with the same colors.
Man cannot remake himself without suffering for he is both the marble and the sculptor.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #33 on: April 17, 2012, 02:40:22 am
Rydin:
I understand the concern. With that area I was trying to see how much I could get away with using only dither/ flat patterns and 45 degree angles. I think my reply to corinthian baby works for you as well:

"No it would not affect the chaotic dither- I can definitely tell it's pushing it as is. This mock up is just a tile test- in the actual map the graphics would become more complex through color limitations and the "amount" of environment there is. Beginning very sparse with loosely defined forms to the more abundant concrete ones found here.

In the final map I will most likely clear some areas up- it's easy to have too much fun with something like this!"

I will be revisiting things further down the line- I'm currently working on other content as I do want this game to actually be made.


However, I will say that I am not always interested in clearly defining things- There very well may be some elements that are too vague for a perfect read, but I will make sure those forms that are not precise are ones that are not necessary for gameplay.

Offline Facet

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #34 on: April 17, 2012, 08:23:40 pm
Sweet watercolour, Erte-esque :y:; are you planning on a pixeled version too or is this pre-vis/context? The story has a nice folk tale bent, is this back story or to be delivered in-game? I'm guessing that the project has outgrown your assignment which can only be a good thing for the state of the game/tiles. Great to see more of this but quite hard to crit really.

For myself, the selective ambiguity, the lost & found edges and amorphously resolving detail is what I really like about the tiles. Gestalt 4eva ;D.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #35 on: April 18, 2012, 01:54:22 am
Not currently planning on a pixeled version- right now i'm actually filling up the negative space in the background with thumbnails and designs for in game stuff, but in an ancient art-y way. Allowing me to visually brain storm and create a work in a style I'm not at all used to. To say the game has outgrown the assignment is an understatement! But I'm glad because the constraints on the content really limited my vision. The back story begins to connect Entropy to another project of mine, Deadbird.

Hopefully I will have some stuff easier to crit up soon but I know some people have taken the time to give advice on this as actually happening so I just wanted to show that it hasn't completely fizzled out.

Perhaps the tiles will appear more " right" in a complete context; with more variation in the landscape and actual landmarks such as dungeons/ ruins to populate.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #36 on: April 19, 2012, 10:46:49 am
Here is the design for the space/time dungeon. I don't think I've discussed it yet but this is probably going to be the " main event" of this world with lots of puzzles and I'm thinking, 3 boss fights ( space, time, and then space-time as a combined entity of the two bosses) with the one of the bosses in each of the towers.



In the center circular area are 2 objects to get from defeating the bosses, the space object and chain of events. These will allow the player to manipulate the puzzles of the unstoppable force/ immovable object ( these puzzles can be completed without them, but you only get one chance when dealing such grand forces, the items allow you to go back in time/ teleport et cetera)

Once these items are acquired you can then go fight Omega and fulfill your destiny and such.

I'm considering getting a friend to make a rough 3D model of it and taking a screenshot at an angle for a 2.5D effect  to make it appear more monumental and real, as opposed to the symbolism that happens in most 2D games. Do you guys think it would be worth it?

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #37 on: April 20, 2012, 12:25:01 am
"Chain of Events", hehe nice.

So explain the sketch. Is it as large as a mountain, or are those just rocky outcroppings on either side.  Looks like a big ol' tent or something . .  with multiple flaps of heavy material shrouding the opening. I see an implied face where the large open round mouth is the concentric circles just above the opening - not intended I'm guessing. Also of course, the large concentric circles look like a huge eyeball.


Oh and the black costumed raven girl you posted right up there reminds me of the type of character Michael Parkes would draw, not a bad thing! If you know him, I highly recommend searching out his work. He paints a lot of elegant human figures, the kinda stuff you like . . . oh and swans, lots of swans. He rocks.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 12:27:27 am by Mathias »

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #38 on: April 20, 2012, 01:17:48 am
Personally I'm just glad you're not giving up on this...I hope you aren't in danger of losing this semester or something because you didnt deliver the demo :p. This is something I fear about when I get critical, that I could possibly set back someone's production by nit picking and ultimately damn the thing to never be released because I can nitpick the hell out of shit XD

About that little backstory there, as I read it I visualized how you with your mad skillz can show that happening and that was pretty good, but I hope if you're using that backstory in the game you deliver it visually ( I imagine a nes-like slideshow/cutscene :p.....with a cool little tune a-la Ninja Gaiden1) because written down it sounds a bit too gamey to work.

Space/Time temple looks pretty good. if properly lighted the idea of making a rough 3d object could be cool too. I've read about people at conceptart.org using google sketchup for that sort of stuff, have you tried it?

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #39 on: April 20, 2012, 04:56:38 am
Mathias: Aren't I the cleverest? ;]

As far as scale goes I don't know exactly, but if you look at the towers on each side, there are stairs that lead to doors, Those doors at the least In game would be 32 pixels tall to allow the character through. The thing should be many "screens" in size. Any faces are not implied but are usually a good sign that something is interesting :D more so the design is intended to visually display the two separate entities of time in space, with the middle construct utilizing curving forms and criss crossed patterns that represent the distortable fabric of space-time.  

Will check out that guy, always looking for relevant artists for influence!

Conceit: The class was basically a joke. I got a B in the end. Shock value, anti-aesthetic, and easily profitable art was the name of the game in the teachers mind. Of course I also made it difficult on myself to relay all of what I wanted into my game projects since they were in fact incomplete- but something tells me even If I did have it completed, the commentary of video games as art, the nods towards eastern religion, and the aesthetics of gameboy color restrictions would have been lost on her anyways.

Perhaps it should not be considered " back" story because I fully plan to have the (optional) quests for the green apples be in game- on a more worldly plane than the second world where the " action" takes place. It's based on some fallacy in logical statements to the effect of the existence of green apples can prove the existence of black ravens- going back to the roots of the project where I was exploring the parallel between paradox and visual glitch.  Raven then in turn becomes a bridge between Entropy and Deadbird.

I once tried to make an Omega symbol in google sketch up and failed miserably. It would be good of me to learn a basic 3D program to help me in situations like this but so far I've been unsuccessful.

For a while the content of this thread will probably be more concept art based and less pixel art based; of course I don't think you guy's mind. Thanks for taking the time to comment!

At the moment I'm expanding and revising the design document. Perhaps I will post it so the dialogue can be more informed.

Edit: Just to contradict what I just said, heres something:



I plan on having the save system being the player choosing for the character to go to sleep. This allows a couple interesting things such as a touch of realism ( what do the characters do when you're not playing the game?) and for the character to have dreams or visions where, based on her location, or what is needed to be done next I can inject images that give hints for the player. This is especially helpful since right now, this is still a textless game.

Anyways- the image includes Wander sleeping on a quilt. Besides the green apples in the first part of the world, I feel theres not much other reason to explore, so I've thought of items that could come from Wander's lover such as a ring, necklace, and in this case a blanket or quilt. I haven't decided if these items should have practical use, but if they do, this quilt could improve the rate at which Wander recovers while sleeping, perhaps even giving boosted stats when doing so.

That said I don't know which design+ color scheme works best, if any at all. C+C very appreciated.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2012, 07:08:16 am by Ryumaru »

Offline rikfuzz

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #40 on: April 20, 2012, 08:44:14 am
I'm considering getting a friend to make a rough 3D model of it and taking a screenshot at an angle for a 2.5D effect  to make it appear more monumental and real, as opposed to the symbolism that happens in most 2D games. Do you guys think it would be worth it?

I sometimes do this, especially if I need to draw at a couple of angles or do rotation on something that's less 'organic'.

example:

(1bit and 2bit)

And the crappy 3d version:
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1534394/boats.jpg
(it's pretty lame, some of my very first 3d stuff actually, but it did the job!)..

Some other complex shape animations really benefit from this technique, these would've taken me a lot longer without something 3d to base them on:



For your graphic, it'd probably only work if your graphic's gonna be quite large, else it might be such a mess after scaling down it'll be hard to clean up.  But it's super quick to just make a very simple collection of shapes to use as a perspective guide.

I've used Blender (it's free), it's a little bit tough to get used to, but there's so many tutorials on Youtube. (Warning, tutorials of old versions don't use the same shortcuts and stuff, so be warned there's some frustrations even there, but it's worth learning at least a bit!). I've also tried sketch-up, but I didn't really get on with it as well. 

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #41 on: April 20, 2012, 10:13:48 am
rikfuzz: I only wish I had HALF the 3D skills you have. My incompetency in that department is embarrassing. How long did it take you to make the model? ( how long to learn to be able to, rather)
Also, those sprites are nice. Obviously I'm a fan of 4 colors :]

In other news, Large detailed boss sprites are going to be really hard to animate. If this was any more than 4 colors I would probably have given up a long time ago. Even still it's very easy to get caught up making nice pixel clusters or fiddling with details that will be seen for less than 1/12 of a second.

Offline rikfuzz

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #42 on: April 20, 2012, 10:51:03 am
rikfuzz: I only wish I had HALF the 3D skills you have. My incompetency in that department is embarrassing. How long did it take you to make the model? ( how long to learn to be able to, rather)
Also, those sprites are nice. Obviously I'm a fan of 4 colors :]

I set aside a day to work through the basics of blender with a friend who vaguely knew what he was doing.  I was totally intimidated by 3d for a long time, and still haven't managed to fully rig anything successfully or animate anything, but I managed to learn how to model, unwrap and texture all in that one day which is a pretty good investment. 
(http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1534394/3dtime.jpg was what I did in that day, although I don't have the textured version).
The boat and sub were what I did after that, and then this model which took me a while, but a fair leap: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1534394/spin_witch_2.gif.  I need to do more!

Boss images look great.  :)  Maybe work out what frames you need and give them a rating based on how long the frame's held for and how frequent, and clean them up to the degree they merit based on that rating. Similar to how inbetweens in TV animation is lower quality than keyframes.

Offline Conzeit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #43 on: April 20, 2012, 08:53:47 pm
Well, I also suck at 3d programs and what I usually do is just...grab some plasticine :p  :lol: That might be specially sacrilegous to someone as educated in arts as yourself but just telling you what I do :p

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #44 on: April 20, 2012, 10:51:27 pm
rikfuzz: I doubt I could do it in a day, but if I did set aside a large amount of dedicated time I could probably make something useful.

Conceit: That's not sacriligeous at all! in fact I hadn't thought of traditional media, but it would probably not work for the given situation: a very architectural thing; but it would be good for bosses and such... which might help me out with this:



animation is such a weakpoint of mine. This is just supposed to be a simple smash. Might re use it for various attacks such as raining down mini black holes or creating a chasm where the impact is for more super gravity force inducing madness. All critique is welcome as I know just enough to know I don't know anything about what I'm doing. Especially wondering about speed/ delays etc

Offline Tuna Unleashed

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #45 on: April 21, 2012, 04:02:52 am
here, i made a quick edit to add some power to it. hope you dont mind or nothin'  :crazy:

Offline PixelPiledriver

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #46 on: April 21, 2012, 09:57:25 am
Really like the character!
The style and execution is great.

Your "line of action" is not as strong as it could be.
This is because you have the passive arms sort of working against the focus on the active arms:



By changing the pose a little you can create a more singular and definite, therefore "stronger", line of action.
This works much the same way as composition in designing a static image to create flow and focus.
Focus should generally be directed to the area doing or about to do the most action.
So here we try to change the shape to be more directional:



Your original is 12 frames and my edit is 23:


It's not that huge of a difference but it could get away with less frames if you have major restrictions.
We are both using 3 delays 60fps.

Quote
Especially wondering about speed/ delays etc
Decreasing the delay fps will allow you to get away with more action.
More impact and motion can be added as it all happens faster and flows together better visually.

Increasing the amount of delay means less work.
The animation lasts longer with less drawings.
But "drag shapes" and "multi frames" will be less effective the more time they are shown.

Find a good compromise between your engine/time restrictions, the amount of work you want to do, and how well you need the animation to flow.
Animation with less action does not require as low of delays.
But could still benefit from it of course.

Go look at my edit in the Punchy punch robot fun thread.
That animation runs at only 2 delays 60fps.
This makes it much faster and more room to stuff in action and timing.
However it ended up being 134 frames.
It depends on what you want but generally people agree that less work is favorable, and higher delays can still be made to look really good even with lots of action.

To get more speed you can do whats called a "multi frame".
You can start by drawing all of the frames separately, showing the motion, just as you already have:


Then you can stack them on top of each other all in a single frame:


packing multiple frames together makes the motion happen faster, as they are all shown at once.
At a decent speed your mind will perceive it as a fast motion.
The stacked frame will also clearly show your line of action.

After getting a good idea of the motion, arcs, and line of action, you can stylize this frame.
There are many different ways of representing this visually.
Purely multiple frames, solid drag forms, particle effects, repeating shapes, blur, etc.
It just depends on what you want.

This is how I styled the multi frame in my edit:


Doing more passes you can add cool stuff like particle effects, lighting effects, etc to supplement the motion.
Action and Reaction go hand in hand:


For me pixel animation is all about re-use.
Make finished art.
A few key frames.
Get good motion just using the select tool.
Clean up.
Make another pass.

What you have is a really good start.
Play around, try variations and new things.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2012, 01:17:27 am by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #47 on: April 21, 2012, 11:26:14 am
Tuna unleashed: I never mind edits! :D I'm here to learn- and especially in the realm of animation. It's much easier for me to improve and see how to fix things with edits. Thank you!

PixelPiledriver: I'm extremely humbled that you took the opportunity to help me out.  The composition of the lower arms was bothering me and I believe I was just in denial of the need to change them since I had already drawn them x]

The multi frame is genius. I thought I was being clever in the second frame overlapping the arms, and here you go and do it for all of them! I will certainly be taking all of this into account and will be coming back with a much improved animation. I've learned a lot just by examining your edit; thank you. Give this man more positive karma please!

I'm almost too taken back to post this, but I was thinking of having him change into a different form towards the end of the boss battle. Basically just an extra set of limbs to complete the 8 requirement. the multiple arms represented gravitational pull, but the spider analogy lends itself well to a powerful being that mostly controls the web of space-time around it. He's still anthropomorphic here but that could change if I do decide to utilize this in game.

Offline Facet

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #48 on: April 21, 2012, 07:10:16 pm
Woah, Good stuff! The one big crit I have for the anim. is that it completely disregards the diminishing perspective even taking into account anatomical exaggeration up top. I've eyeballed it here quickly but I reckon that the aforementioned sculpt or a mannequin would help a ton here too.



Elsewhere, I love the mats (particularly the purple scheme) and spider-form boss looks great but even more work, even more limbs, I don't envy your workload :P

Edit - Did a less crappy example (than my first posted attempt). Actually, what you have now would work, were the player character on a higher level, say a cliff edge; that might be a smarter way to do things in terms of the ease of animation and the spectacle of his monumental size.

Edit again - Felt like I kinda interrupted the impetus provided by PP's animation sorcery :-X, mocked up the platform thing too.
« Last Edit: April 22, 2012, 11:39:22 pm by Facet »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #49 on: April 24, 2012, 05:03:54 am
Facet that mock up is awesome... thank you! It would make things easier... I was just about to start animating but I think I need to go the sketchbook for a bit and plan out how the boss battle will go exactly to ensure the animations are compatible. I'm thinking a mid way point between fully utilizing the perspective in your first edit and the practicality of the second. Stay tuned!

edit:


tried to take things into account. Altered the perspective of the arms just a tad as a nod to facet's edit. still got some kinks to work out but I think the recoil does well. I'm rationalizing his attacks as forcing through the cosmos around him to create chasms of super gravity areas. So he doesn't have to actually hit any target, which will allow for a maneuverable quality when it come time to put him in game.
« Last Edit: April 24, 2012, 09:44:23 am by Ryumaru »

Offline Chris2balls

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #50 on: April 24, 2012, 10:49:00 am
I think the head and arms lack anticipation/movement.
I made a quick sketch of what I mean, I hope it helps:

You could make him twitch before he hits, to give an idea of strength.
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Offline Facet

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #51 on: April 24, 2012, 08:50:07 pm
Quote
I think I need to go the sketchbook for a bit and plan out how the boss battle will go exactly to ensure the animations are compatible.
Definitely. I can see how much work you've invested in the current animation set-up and possibly the discrepency would go unoticed, at a push it could be ret-con'd character-specifically as distortions of space and time :P, but under scrutiny; his fists are the size of his shins and how does he touch his toes without exposing his back?

If you plan on going the raised platform route consider that given the standard player sprite, the height of the platform ultimately determines the scale of the boss; the player appears knee-high at ground level or ankle-high raised to around chest height. Also assuming a raised platform; a bit of method drawing (pretending to crush my mug of tea) would suggest that midget-squashing via the heel of the hand (exposing the front of the knuckles) is more natural and satisfying :hehe:

I guess it's already clear what I'm talking about but for the sake of clarity, a diagram (with most recent fists). Love CRB's anticipation thing too.

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #52 on: April 24, 2012, 09:56:23 pm
Chris2balls: Ah yes, he could go for some anticipation, couldn't he? Will do, Thanks!

Facet:

Perhaps we are merely seeing things differently? The entire description of his attack was to say that he's basically hitting air. Creating some sort of chasm in a directional path from the impact ( in this case, vertical). This is what will harm the player. Originally, yes, I hadn't given any thought to the perspective and it was implied by the smash that his arms were going all the way, or nearly all the way down which is shown in your edit. But I propose in this new movement that his arms  start straight up, or even back a bit, and merely move to below his chest. Does the fact that his fists are nearly tangent with the bottom of his feet make them appear to be on the same plane? I may be able to fix that up a bit.

Heres an example of what I'm talking about, apparently drawn when I was 4:



I believe this rationalization will be better as A) you can only spend so much time on one boss animation, and while this has led to me learning a lot about animation already, I do believe I need to move on sometime since I do actually want this made. B ) I believe if I were to go with the full range of movement that your edit offers, the necessary reduction of size, and decrease of light on the fists would take them away from being a focal point- when they are more or less the " creation" of the force that does damage, and I think that works better in terms of practical gameplay reasonings and C) he's a supermassive black hole spider monster and doesn't have to obey silly things like perspective. :crazy:

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #53 on: April 24, 2012, 11:10:40 pm
Ah man, I don't want to burden you with even more work than you've challenged yourself with ;). I'm just trying to understand something that confused me and might similarly affect players. Avoiding large-scale animations in perspective, in the context of a game with many animations sounds like a great idea to me but I couldn't help but think that's what you were attempting. I can't speak for everyone else that commented but I find the current anim. very hard to read as a gesture conjuring something from the air. The knuckles & particle effects seem to connect with a surface parallel to the feet and the animation seems purposefully designed (all that recoil) to describe that same collision. You said “this is just supposed to be a simple smash” ie. a physical attack, hitting the player, so I was pretty sure I had it right?

If you made the collision a clap so as not to appear as if connecting with the ground and toned down the bounce I think it would avoid massive undue revision and read much better as per that remarkably prescient 4 year-old's description ;D.
« Last Edit: April 24, 2012, 11:14:02 pm by Facet »

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #54 on: April 25, 2012, 12:24:39 am
You did have it right, but I decided to re-rationalize what the attack was ( from a physical smash to a less physical attack) half way through to make things easier on me. I understand your confusion and wouldn't want an animation to take the player out of the game experience. Before I had read your post I came up with this:



Where I was trying to put in a bit of anticipation. I think I will put his hands into more of a "slicing" position and perhaps that will read more as a gesture to distort than the fists do. I'll be sure the player has as difficult of a time defeating this boss as I have animating him!

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #55 on: April 25, 2012, 04:57:47 am
the wobble seems to do more for making him look like he's made of jello than adding impact :p also, for his little arms, i would make the flick at the end more of a fluid, gradual thing rather than a quick unnatural looking snap.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #56 on: April 25, 2012, 08:08:58 am
It's looking much better.
Great progression.
The new key helps a lot.

The animation you have is very physical, and fun.
I would suggest you keep it as primarily a slam attack, as if he is making contact with a surface.
You could still have stuff pop up or a wave shoot out or something.
But If the player gets under his fists they should definitely take physical damage.

If you're going to make him shoot special stuff I would say make it completely different than the slam:


From a gameplay perspective it will allow the player to pick up instantaneous visual cues about whats going on.
This will allow them to react more quickly.
Sound and color is also a good way to alert the player of a specific action.

Then throw in a move that tricks people.
"Oh hes gonna sma..... oh no! he did the other thing!"

I just realized that I didn't even explain the bounce in terms of animation theory.
This is whats called "Resolve".
It can take on many forms and is used in general to dissipate energy.
In this case we are trying to "resolve" a fast motion and an impact.
Effectively we are trying to show weight.

To simplify, basically weight bends stuff at joints or "pivot points".

Try doing this attack in front of a mirror.
But hit a pillow or something so you don't hurt yourself.
This is known as "Acting for animation".

The most resolve will come from your upper body, head, and shoulders.
They will bounce a lot as you naturally stabilize your weight.
The primary pivots will be your fists.
They will not move much.
The Secondary pivots will be your elbows.
They will bend some but will also act as a pivot to your upper body.
Something like this:


The main reason why he appears "jelloish" is because you are implying a pivot by stretching from here:


Where as a more natural pivot is the elbows (and/or hands):


Where you place a pivot isn't really right or wrong.
It doesn't matter so much if there should be one there or not.
Depending on the character and the action unrealistic pivot points can work really well.

Also keep in mind that no matter what you see in the mirror, you will want to exaggerate.

There a bunch of different ways to use resolve.
This bouncing type of resolve about fixed pivots implies that he is making contact with a surface and stabilizing his weight.
If he were not hitting something, or something very light, you would still use resolve but in a different way.

Take for example a golf club.
Hitting the ground and hitting a golf ball.
In both there is anticipation.
In both there is action.
In both there is impact.
In both energy dissipates.
In both weight stabilizes.
In both there is resolve.
But they feel and look different.

I completely glazed over this topic last time, so sorry for that.

Another cool trick I've used here is the "Shrink Frame".
Just before he shoots I shrink down his upper body.
Then on the next frame I make it larger:


You can use this trick in lots of situations.
When you find a good spot for a shrink, try sizing it down more than you would think possible.
It's often surprising how exaggerated this can be and still work really well.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2012, 09:51:13 am by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #57 on: April 27, 2012, 07:37:46 am
Pixelpiledriver: I can't thank you enough for your continued help! My animation skill level has nearly doubled just from two posts of yours. Pixelation is too lucky to have some new blood like you ( and Facet, too) that are actively giving strong in depth critique like this. I like the special shooting animation you made, currently I suck at effect animations, and I have even less patience for them than movement animation.

I enjoyed your explanation of resolve, and afterwards started looking up samurai swords in slow motion for reference as the slicing movement is what I'm after. I've updated the animation a little bit and I will show once I'm done. I've changed his fists into the more " slicey" gesture and I'm working on the resolve part of the animation now.

I also have a very, very dirty mockup of what I want this attack to do. The reason I don't want cliffs and pounding like in Facet's edit is that I'm envisioning platforms slowly being sucked into the area and getting caught up and dissolved into his super gravity areas- the vertical chasm of which is what this attack is about. Don't mind the colors; they're just me fucking around:

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #58 on: April 27, 2012, 08:02:37 am
PPD are the particle effects by hand?  Are you using an automated process?  Like Pro-motion anim paint?  The world wants to know!

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #59 on: April 27, 2012, 09:31:38 am
Quote
My animation skill level has nearly doubled just from two posts of yours.
Great!
I'm attempting to be as clear and general as possible.
Honestly my posts could use twice as many diagrams but I don't have time for that right now.
Glad its helping.

Quote
currently I suck at effect animations, and I have even less patience for them than movement animation.
FX can be tough.
It's very different than character work.
Just play around and try stuff.
Of course there's a bunch of good theory that makes sense of it.
When I get some time I can talk about fx too if you're interested.
Might be a while tho.

Quote
PPD are the particle effects by hand?
Yup.
That's why they're so messy!
I really enjoy drawing particles directly into an animation.
It's not the most flexible way of doing things but its fun.
Sometimes I rip them out and put them in their own sprite, so they can be faded and scaled and stuff.
But sometimes its cool to just leave them burned in because its simple and rough.

Quote
Are you using an automated process?
No.
But I also do game/graphics programming.
I was the particle fx coder on my team for the last couple games.
I've done a bunch more in the past just for fun.
I'm familiar with how to do something like this with numbers as well.

Quote
Like Pro-motion anim paint?
I use graphics gale.
I assume what you mean is some sort of tween feature?
Like Flash style?
Never used Pro-motion.
Tweens can be good to get things started.
Sort of fill out how much time and space you want to take up quickly.
Then break them into keys and edit by hand.
They're also really good for color transformations.
And for really slow motions that just have gobs of frames, like 100+ where not much really happens.
The spheres on my blog are a good example of that.
But most of the time I don't use them.
I find it easier to just dive in and make a mess.

Also I realized that I mention the "Shrink Frame".
But I don't say what it does.
In summary, it creates an extreme moment of "change".
But I don't have time to detail that topic thoroughly right now.
So It'll have to wait.
Just keep in mind that a balanced amount of "change" in animation is a good thing.

Cool mockup!
« Last Edit: April 27, 2012, 10:10:38 am by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #60 on: May 05, 2012, 07:36:09 am
Might just be me, but I find copying and pasting full frames in promotion very unintuitive so this breathing animation doesn't cycle like it should.
Idle breathing animation for Void:



anybody know how to save as a ping pong animation in promotion 5.1? I will be getting a new computer in the summer and may upgrade then, but this is what I have for now.

edit: eww no transparency
« Last Edit: May 05, 2012, 07:38:45 am by Ryumaru »

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #61 on: May 05, 2012, 02:41:49 pm
Looks nice! c: For breathing you probably don't want a ping pong animation, though. Exhaling could be shorter, and would make his abdomen less inflated than the normal size.

I don't know about promotion, but in Gale I just go to the last frame, duplicate, scrub back one, duplicate, etc. If there are hotkeys for this it makes it a lot easier.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #62 on: May 05, 2012, 04:04:55 pm
Thanks C: I was actually hoping there was a way the frames could magically be made going in reverse order and I could manipulate the  timing for the second half x] My version of pro motion may be bugged ( or much more likely it's a human error) but it often gets " stuck" by only being able to paste the first frame that was copied and not any others after that.
Once I get the full animation sorted out I want to play with the little arms being delayed from the rest of the motion a bit as well as that "shutter" quality I saw someone do here at one point in time

Bahh need to get gale too, the freeware version doesn't save as gif. In the meantime I might try to land some freelance to pay for these when I get my new computer.

Offline PixelPiledriver

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #63 on: May 05, 2012, 05:23:19 pm
Quote
I was actually hoping there was a way the frames could magically be made going in reverse order

Select the range of frames you want to reverse:


Copy them:


Paste To Right means to the right of the currently selected frame:


Select the newly pasted frames in a range and reverse:


Magic!


Quote
I find copying and pasting full frames in promotion very unintuitive
Never tried Promotion.
But in gale I'm able to work with frames extremely easily with just the keyboard and my left hand.

E = Next frame
Q = Prev frame
1 = copy
2 = paste to right
4 = delete
5 = reverse

I find them really fast and easy to press.
But its up to you.
Goto File -> Preferences -> Key tab.

Only thing that can't be done from the keyboard is sorting, which you have to drag the frames around in the UI with the mouse.
Or sometimes I just do a work around by copy, paste, delete instead.
For selecting ranges you need the mouse as well, like shown above.

Cool animation!
« Last Edit: May 05, 2012, 05:41:15 pm by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #64 on: May 05, 2012, 06:51:36 pm
Lookin' great, love the concept of the inexorable dissolution of multiple (orbiting?) platforms. Swag new idle anim. (especially bidi), your lines and shading are a lot bolder, more angular here, I like ;D.

Crits; his arms look quite a bit bigger than the previous movement, and his head/traps seem strangely static, could tilt up; actually looks a bit like his pecs overlap his chin there.  

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #65 on: May 05, 2012, 09:35:43 pm
PixelPiledriver:

That IS magic 0.0 graphics gale's way of dealing with frames is much more up my alley and it's much more affordable than a new version of pro motion!

One question though, does it allow for layers/ onionskinning? I just found out how to do it pmotion and it is of course a helpful feature. Either way it wouldn't be too difficult to switch between programs for certain features.

Facet: Thought you would, that mock up was for you bby ;D Yeah the angular shading was a ( good) artifact that came through from the sketch as I tightened it up. The arms are smaller in the previous movement; dare I say I made them too big in the idle animation ( which had the first frame I completed of him) but some of it is also due to foreshortening and positioning: he's basically brandishing his arms as a display of power ( the lateral view of an upper arm is always the largest) where as anterior views usually appear the smallest.

The little arms especially though, I could easily shave off a couple pixels on the bicep and everyone would be better for it.

The head moves a grand 2 pixels… felt like more when I was animating it. Will do. His pecs are so large they don't care about the existence of chins. Traps should contract too as that is actually the cause of the entire movement!

As always thanks for the posts and crits. Feedback like this makes it easier to stay motivated!

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #66 on: May 05, 2012, 10:53:56 pm
I was thinking that some motion in the hands would give a lot more character to Void.
Consider ways of making us associate Void to emptiness: maybe he could attract parts/colours/bits of his environment, much like a black hole. Maybe you could scare the player by making him completely invisible in some parts of the battle, with attracted debri being the only cue for an attack. As the battle progresses, there is more and black, as if he's consuming the whole level chunk by chunk to keep on surviving.
Suggestion:

Hope it inspires you!
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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #67 on: May 06, 2012, 12:02:47 am
 hmm, I haven't animated with graphics gale before. There's a lot of good info here..
I don't know what to say.. this is some very nice art O: I'll have to slowly take this stuff in.

Offline PixelPiledriver

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #68 on: May 06, 2012, 06:01:54 am
Quote
One question though, does it allow for layers/ onionskinning?
Yup, it has both.
I cover Onion skinning here.
I'll throw together some images on layering for you a little later.
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #69 on: July 09, 2012, 10:59:10 am
chris2balls:
Definitely inspiring! Will be looking into your ideas when it comes to special effects in-game :] the possibilities are overwhelming!

haven't done much in the way of pixel art for the project, but I have done some concept work here and there. Also, here's a banner for the first post : >

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #70 on: January 02, 2013, 04:06:45 am
Humbledate:





Main character sprite has gotten a gender change ( and hopefully better readability) Very early beginnings of a ghost village that will be one of the places to find a green apple for the raven, among other things. cliff face architecture based on dogon villages.

editdate:


Also, heres an old sprite sheet. Tweaks will have to be made for the gender swap and I think I want to go the smooth metal gear solid route for these animations to push what I can do in such a small space. Will be tough-

« Last Edit: January 02, 2013, 09:15:19 am by Ryumaru »

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #71 on: January 05, 2013, 04:46:43 am
According to me, the previous animation feels too two dimensionnal.
I decided to give it a try :



You can't just move pieces of sprites, you have to distort them if you
make people "feel" the volumes of the muscles, the body, the shapes.
Look at it in slow motion and try to understand the arms perspective,
the head looking up, the rib cage growing as he prepares to smash :



Notice how important is the anticipation before the smash, it adds a lot
of violence into it. But this a very quick wip, a better version + in depth
comments coming tomorrow.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2013, 05:02:19 am by tim »
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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #72 on: August 02, 2013, 09:55:13 am
So it's been a while, I've been working on various odds and ends.

This little fella is a stranded wolf pup for the player to rescue in later playthroughs. Sprites this small are difficult.


a parachute from the earlier cloth. Used for accessing things before the raven cloak is obtainable.


This is a concept for a lotus room, sort of like a hidden firelink shrine that will replenish the main character. This one is part of the natural world, like the mud buildings a couple posts back, different from the glitchy otherworldly realm in black and white. Right now things are a little clashy but will harmonize once I get rid of the npa element and clean some of the tiles up.



any comments are welcome. I'm also posting this for myself as a motivation? tool so that the next may not be months from now!

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #73 on: August 02, 2013, 12:01:25 pm
Find this project really exciting - I almost don't want to see too much behind the scenes spoiling the in game discovery, but feel privileged that I can.  :D

Hope you stick to it!

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #74 on: August 02, 2013, 03:32:33 pm
I too love watching the progress on this. Lots off cool stuff and smart critique. The only thing I can say about your new stuff is that they parachute looks a little out of perspective to me, but I could be wrong, and the lily pad tile has the white dots at the bottom which lets you see the boundary of the tile giving it a really squarish appearance.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #75 on: August 08, 2013, 10:26:40 am
This is a concept for a lotus room, sort of like a hidden firelink shrine that will replenish the main character. This one is part of the natural world, like the mud buildings a couple posts back, different from the glitchy otherworldly realm in black and white. Right now things are a little clashy but will harmonize once I get rid of the npa element and clean some of the tiles up.
I don't know if this idea can follow the plot, but it would be cool effect when player sees this place getting glitchy and monochrome ;)
Really great project, I can't wait for the next update!

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #76 on: August 09, 2013, 09:40:09 am
Rikfuzz: Thanks! I hope I do too! Heh. I'll be sure to keep some of the juicy parts such as the narrative and parts of puzzles and design so you'd guys have something to look forward to incase you guys ever play it.

Mr. Fahrenheit: Will play with the parachute, mostly just drew it out so I'd get the concept down and have something for play testing before committing. I agree about the lili pads, That whole scene has been a lesson in simplicity and I've been finding it's not necessary to always cram little details like shines and reflections just because it's possible.

rafal345: Thank you! :D There will be another lotus room that is much more technical and will feature the monochrome palette and perhaps even the glitchy aesthetic; will try to sketch it up soon :]

Switching gears a tiny bit I'd like to ask your guys' opinion. In the natural world there will be green apples spread across the map that can then be given to the raven in return for special equipment. The Raven has a statue dedicated to it and I'd like the shrine where the apples are placed to be sort of "soft hidden". Which one of the images below do you thing would work better? 1 would feature some very subtle light coming from the sides showing where the player can walk into, and 2 would be under the wing ( with the player able to walk under it and prove there are some places you can go that you can't "see"). I'm a little torn as to which.



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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #77 on: August 09, 2013, 09:45:18 am
I really like #1 being so imposing, but a profile head is much more readable, can you turn it to the side, like this?

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #78 on: August 09, 2013, 02:16:25 pm
#1 looks a lot more shrine like then 2. I agree with rikfuzz too.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #79 on: August 09, 2013, 02:39:52 pm
#1, for sure. Way more iconic and interesting. And I love the way the head is pointing straight up.

(That pic is drawn on paper, right? Scanned in. What are you using to get the white?)

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #80 on: August 09, 2013, 04:38:14 pm
BTW, for some reason, last time I looked at this I read #1's head totally wrong - I read the eye as the beak facing forwards and the actual beak as the continuation of the mountain in the background.  I kinda like it pointing up now that I'm seeing it correctly, so if you don't want to make the head profile just be aware of that possible interpretation and do what you can to mitigate it while rendering.   :y:  Head to the side is probably still my ideal choice, but #1 as is is pretty cool too now I've had a chance to wake up.   :crazy:

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #81 on: August 09, 2013, 05:00:55 pm
Maybe the eyes on the side of the head would make it read better.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #82 on: August 09, 2013, 05:09:21 pm
But then it wouldn't be giving you that creepy cool side glance.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #83 on: August 09, 2013, 06:17:49 pm
While it is cool it doesn't read as well for me and it just looks like a weird cyclops thing.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #84 on: August 09, 2013, 09:08:20 pm
It could still work how it is, just make sure it's not ambiguous when in pixels.  :y:  But definitely go with some form of #1 with the Cristo Redentor vibe. 

Offline Mathias

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #85 on: August 09, 2013, 10:02:40 pm
The eye could blink and/or follow the player, as if watching.

OOooooOOOOohhhh eeerie

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #86 on: August 09, 2013, 10:55:36 pm
Heh, you guys are awesome.
Mathias: yep it's toned paper with opaque white pen, I don't know the exact type but it's made by sakura- same peeps that do micron pens.

The "eye" on the back of the head is a recurring symbol in the world and is supposed to represent a sort of omniscience and knowledge of the raven who serves a demigod like function in the world. I know that may be a bit hard to convey with pixels and overly simplified geometric shapes, but I really don't mind any ambiguity- sometimes that's better than clarity anyway.

But i think it's pretty unanimous that #1 is better, and I agree, That iconic shape fits with the mystical and ancient vibe.

Mathias: I'm totally a sucker for that stuff, perhaps it can happen off screen so as to keep it subtle. Have you seen/played Antichamber?

Offline rafal345

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #87 on: August 10, 2013, 11:20:03 am
rafal345: Thank you! :D There will be another lotus room that is much more technical and will feature the monochrome palette and perhaps even the glitchy aesthetic; will try to sketch it up soon :]
I meant something like this(I just made it monochrome, but this black/white part should be glitchy too):

Later I'll post other things but I need a bit more time, that project is so cool :D
« Last Edit: August 10, 2013, 11:22:22 am by rafal345 »

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #88 on: October 07, 2013, 10:18:16 pm
rafal345: Thanks for the image! I'd like to have tile based glitches like your animation, but done in code. At some point I will need to find a programmer masochistic enough to want to tackle all these purposeful glitch effects  :D

As ya'll know, animation is not a strong point of mine, but I powered up my ancient toshiba ( about a decade old now) and bought graphics gale. Been messing around with some idle animations. I tried to do a sine wave thing with the cloth in one.





Offline rafal345

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #89 on: October 14, 2013, 08:23:48 pm
I'd make the last animation a bit more dynamic and less "regular" (I don't know how to name it properly):

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #90 on: January 31, 2014, 09:40:25 pm
rafal345: Thanks for the suggestion! Animation is such a different world for me- I'm sure I'll go through many iterations of many different assets  :crazy:

Lately I've been messing with the character's size. the 24 pixel height stemmed from a more pokemon/ ocean star blue sphere mentality, but I wanted to see what 8 pixels of extra height could do for me. So far I like the result, but I'm really interested in what you guys think. My thinly veiled argument for them is that it will be easier to make the animations readable, and allow for a bit more artistry in them- but really I was just thinking bigger is better. The advantage of this size over something even larger is that other assets ( of which I've done little of anyway) can stay the same scale.

Also, let me know your opinions on the level of shading in the larger ones. it's all equally enticing to me.




« Last Edit: January 31, 2014, 09:47:21 pm by Ryumaru »

Offline Mr. Fahrenheit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #91 on: February 01, 2014, 09:04:30 pm
The new sprites look good to me. I like that they use the highlight color more sparingly.

Offline rikfuzz

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #92 on: February 03, 2014, 09:53:00 am
Love the big ones a lot.  My preference is with the bottom row - slightly cleaner and easier to understand. But the top set (despite being busier) is still very readable, so it's mostly a style thing.  Love it when this thread gets updated, keep up the good work! 

Offline Probo

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #93 on: February 03, 2014, 07:13:30 pm
I like the new and the old sprites too. although the newer, bigger ones have closer-to-realistic proportions which seems like it may fit your game better.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #94 on: February 04, 2014, 09:55:32 pm
#1 fan checks in  :)
I have to say that I like smaller sprites more and I don't know how are the bigger ones going to be fit into current tileset, I guess you'd have to make tileset bigger too. But if it's easier for you - sure, continue with the bigger sprites and show progress pictures more often  :P

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #95 on: February 05, 2014, 05:29:24 am
Fahrenheit, rikfuzz, and probo: I'm glad you all like them! I've been gravitating towards them more and more ever since I did them.

fafal345: And then the fumble! sucks that you like the smaller points more DX! Is it the charm? Have they grown on you since they have always been with the project? I will try to update more often just for you though ;] Can't lose my number one!

If you're concerned how they will fit with tiles, hopefully these images will ease your worries. The first is a rough mockup in the perhaps final resolution. I intend it to be 16:9 standard hd ratio, as one of my supposed target platforms, the OUYA is played on home televisions. ( if it's still a thing by the time the game is made :x)
The second is a sketch for some carved rock faces and a bit of a gbc mock. Was deeply inspired by the treatment of rocks in Boktai.



Offline astraldata

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #96 on: February 05, 2014, 09:31:43 pm
I just have to say this looks pretty amazing so far.

I really do urge you to stick with the smaller sprites though. With a name like "Wander", you really do need to feel like you're in a big, open, world and the smaller sprites allow you to feel small in the world (akin to the original Zelda on the NES where you actually DID wander). The ratio of character-to-screen seems more ideal to the smaller sprite size due to this fact, and the smaller ones are definitely more mysterious than the larger (easier to read) sprites.

I've been having a hankering for an RPG-style game like this for a really long time. Like Zelda, the style screams mysterious and epic. This definitely needs to be made. Some things I've read regarding the story don't quite do it the justice it deserves, but it's not far off the mark regardless. I definitely like the direction you're going with this.

Have you ever played the Illusion of Time / Gaia? Not quite the same thing in visual style, but it does have a similar mood/tone as what you're going for on some level I think.
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Offline Probo

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #97 on: February 05, 2014, 10:27:47 pm
I just have to say this looks pretty amazing so far.

I really do urge you to stick with the smaller sprites though. With a name like "Wander", you really do need to feel like you're in a big, open, world and the smaller sprites allow you to feel small in the world (akin to the original Zelda on the NES where you actually DID wander).

thats actually a really good point. something else ive just noticed is has the perspective become a little less topdown since you made them bigger? they might not fit with the bosses. maybe if you changed the angle of them a bit you could have a bit of both, keep the horizontal size of the new sprites and have less vertical size for a smaller sprite overall

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #98 on: May 23, 2014, 02:13:40 am
It's been a while; I have a few bits to show. It's funny seeing the necropost warning every time I update this thread  :crazy:



examine screen for certain areas/ picked up objects.



another lotus room location.

astraldata: Thank you so much! I appreciate your thoughts on the matter. I am torn on the sprite size thing, it is an important issue. I see your point, but I have fallen at least a little in love with the new sprites. I will feel things out as the world is created and issues such as screen size are finalized.

Probo: Yep, perspective is a bit different. As I flesh out the visuals of boss battles and other areas I will get a better sense of how things are working. Stay tuned!

Offline Mr. Fahrenheit

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #99 on: May 23, 2014, 02:43:03 am
The apple seems a bit narrow to me. Besides that good work, it all looks awesome.

Offline Souly

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #100 on: May 23, 2014, 06:25:27 am
Geeze been a while since I've been here, but what a project to come back to.  :o

Have been working on a game with similar themes and you just made me jealous of things I wish I'd though of myself.
The attention to detail is really awe-inspiring!

Keep up the great work Ryu.

Offline astraldata

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #101 on: May 24, 2014, 01:28:54 am
The apple seems a bit narrow to me. Besides that good work, it all looks awesome.

Yeah, it really does. Sort of resembles a peach or something more than an apple unfortunately. Nice pixel work though. ;)
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Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #102 on: June 18, 2014, 05:08:34 am
Is narrow a fruit term for it's color/ appearance or do you guys mean it's physical width? 0.o I didn't know I could mess up an apple that bad!

souly: Thanks so much! That is how creativity goes; I've had the same feeling with many other projects I've seen around. I had a mini conniption when I found out the main character's name in Shadow of the Colossus is "Wander"- and when I saw the first looks at Journey!

Here is a mockup for weapon selection. I want the game to be as textless as possible. It's been interesting and difficult trying to do screens like this without the aid of words. Others will be even harder.



And "portraits" of some of the full blades so far:


« Last Edit: June 18, 2014, 06:22:48 am by Ryumaru »

Offline FrostPumpkin

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #103 on: June 18, 2014, 06:52:10 am
Man, I just wanted to say that I've been following this thread since the very beginning with much attention and each new post you make is a pleasure for my eyes, really.
The game looks really promising and I really enjoy that kind of glitchy aesthetics you're going for sometimes.
I don't have anything relevant to say, I just wish you the best of luck with this project. Looks awesome ! keep it up :)

Offline rikfuzz

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #104 on: June 18, 2014, 08:35:27 am
Beautiful as always.  :y: The finger creases look a bit deep/dark to me though - looks almost segmented. 

Offline Mathias

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #105 on: June 18, 2014, 09:27:31 am
Hey, there's Souly. He's alive!


Ryu, in the weapons selection mockup, is there a place for stats to display as you scroll?
Need to be able to quickly analyze which weapon is the best choice when switching. Do I want crit chance or pure physical attack power, etc.

Different coloration will help each weapon look even more unique, unless you've already settled on the tan/purple palette here.

If you stick with this game idea and keep growing it, I think you may have a real winner on your hands.
It'll take massive perseverance, though. Your biggest issue may be finding dependable programmers.

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #106 on: June 18, 2014, 11:25:00 pm
Neat menu mock-up and weapons.
 I think the white highlighted area is too stark. Maybe a pale yellow would look nicer? Or maybe something just a tad lighter than the faded out map background color.

Offline coffee

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #107 on: June 19, 2014, 09:21:25 am
So good to see this project waking up again! Just wanted to pop in and say that.

Also, I feel like the thumbs are a bit too straight. If I hold out my hand in a similar fashion I can't see my fingernail. Also the forefingers are a bit unaturally twisted. They would be a lot more like the other fingers!

Other than that, sweet job, love the idea with the hands

Offline ErekT

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #108 on: June 19, 2014, 11:13:08 am


I feel this is more what I'm seeing when I look at my own hands in that position. Added some shade from the index finger to the middle finger and made the thumb smaller. I think it could be shorter still.

Beautiful project! I'm way more excited about this kind of art direction than any AAA stuff nowadays.

Offline Fizzick

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #109 on: June 19, 2014, 02:53:30 pm
It seems like the thumb is curved inwards somewhat unnaturally. Wouldn't the print be facing upwards?

Offline Ryumaru

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #110 on: June 20, 2014, 03:12:57 am
FrostPumpkin: Thanks! I really appreciate it! your words are very motivating; creating a game will be a very stressful and time consuming venture- hearing talented people like you, and the many others, enjoying this project will help me as I start pushing this project past the vast heap of promising yet uncompleted games.

rikfuzz: Thanks! I agree; hopefully my update below does a good job of softening them.

Mathias: Stat display is an issue I'm working with currently. I've started to cement the concept of multiple playthroughs revealing more information to the player in subtle ways; a nudge that, combined with the natural broadening of one's understanding after completion, I hope will give the player a sense of finding and understanding complexity in the game and narrative were previously there "wasn't any".

This is to say I definitely didn't just forget about such a thing! Just how or if to implement it is something cooking in my cranium, currently.

I'm quite partial to the tan and purple :3 Right now I really like the idea of separating interactive objects through palette alone. This is a nod to the inherent restrictions ( tiles allow for one more color, and thus more detail and a different look) as well as old animation cel created cartoons where they couldn't feasibly move something in the background without it being drawn on a cel and painted in a flat manner as opposed to the usually higher detailed backgrounds. 
It is notably important that the weapons all share a palette with Wander. Playing with the idea of this representing these items being closer to Wander in their makeup than other parts of this world is something I do when decision making at 3 AM within the arbitrary limitations I've given myself for this game so far.

| | | |: Thanks! I personally kind of liked it, but I gave it a try with a couple other easily available colors and compiled the options in a gif below. What do you think? This goes for everybody else, too!

coffee: Yes! it's good to be back. I tried to address your crits in the update below, let me know what you think! I found the thumb looked awkward/ ungraceful without at least a little bit of the nail showing, but I made it thinner.

ErekT: Great stuff! I tried to put your edits into account. Thanks so much! I've grown so much since this idea first started; I tell myself what I'm doing is really cool to keep me going, but it's nice to hear that from other people!  :crazy:

Fizzick: You're definitely right! Tried to address it in the latest.



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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #111 on: June 20, 2014, 08:58:31 pm
I think I do like the white after all... looking back at the earlier posts again; it seems to match best.
 That violet is pretty interesting and the pale yellow is pretty effective (I do like the visible outline with the colored highlights). White seems to be the best highlighter...Good to see other options though.
 Picking colors is so hard. ???
Instead of the strip / highlighter you could just have the white outline on the selected item instead also.

Offline PixelPiledriver

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #112 on: June 20, 2014, 09:30:40 pm
Lookin good man.
Try  some other stuff too.

And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #113 on: June 20, 2014, 09:41:45 pm
 :y: I actually like that option PPD

Offline Fizzick

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #114 on: June 20, 2014, 10:28:04 pm

i'm nowhere near your level of skill, but this is what i might do? sorry if bad. it's really rough too

Offline wolfenoctis

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Re: Project Entropy

Reply #115 on: June 21, 2014, 04:12:39 pm
Some small proportional issues with the hand, most notably the thumb size, also thought it might look better for the menu screen if the light is coming from the left so when mirrored it would seem as if the light is in the center, also think the highlight color is a little too strong, only used it on some nails  :D