AuthorTopic: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup  (Read 6297 times)

Offline alessandroLino

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[WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

on: June 14, 2012, 09:28:12 am
So, i've ben working with a friend for a small game, just for learning purpose. Since hes most on the coding i've been working on the art and trying to improve while at it. My first works were all based on the NES pallete, since i had (and still don't) no idea on how to make my own pallete, but i'm trying to move away from it, since i feel kinda limited with those colors. Think i've talked enough, to the arts!




I'd like some general feedback, but for now the biggest issue is on character diferentiation, is it clear whos a guy and whos a girl? Also if is better with or without the outline, without it, i feel the characters are more readable, but in the scene they get kinda invisible, and with outlines, it gives alot of readability in the scene, but i think it messes up the legs of the small dudes. :(

Also, anyone got tips on tiling natural stuff, like the cave walls? And on how to work up my own pallete? I've been just choosing colors for what i couldn't work with the NES one.

Thats it for now! Thanks in advance  :)

Offline BladeJunker

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #1 on: June 14, 2012, 11:04:49 pm
I can't create an effective color palette either so I can't offer advice on that. :-[ Arne's 16 color global palette is most excellent and easy to use since the low number of colors speeds up decision making when coloring sprites. Version 20 of the palette on page 3 is mostly stable at the moment.
http://www.wayofthepixel.net/pixelation/index.php?topic=4306.0

edit.

Wasn't too much I'd change, I shifted the left foot and right shoulder down a pixel since the stance was looking odd. Same with right foot I pointed it to the front of the view for the same reason. Also added to the right thigh since it looked thin compared to the left thigh and tried to detail and shadow the head a little.

I think the outlines serve it best and the gender shines through quite well despite the thick wardrobe and short stature of the sprites. You've basically exceeded Nes color limits for the characters unless you use sprite layering but you have a fair number of sprites present that could get in the way of that, if you just want the styling as an effect I'd stick to 8 colors at most per sprite for a semi "8-bit" look.

For natural or organic tiles I would think some variations on the default tile would help your cave out. More cracks, stuff growing in the cracks, missing bricks, etc. you get the idea.

Despite the small sprites you can only either push for more perspective accuracy(Higher tilt on the view angle on the sprites.) or an approximation of the view for pleasing sprite appearance. Right now you're kind of in the middle and neither priority is being served well. I can't say I ever liked the flat Egyptian look of old RPGs so I'd try to get the perspective better.

You might want to consider a higher position for the characters when up against the wall unless its required that they keep away from the wall, idk? Just something to consider.


I should ask, what resolution are you going to make the game window, just curious at the scale everything will be seen at?

Overall I find the graphics quite pleasing to eye, I could look at them for long periods of time without getting sick of them if that makes sense. ???  ;D

Offline alessandroLino

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #2 on: June 15, 2012, 12:36:24 am
Well, thanks alot for the feedback!

The first point i had a go at fixing was the perspective, which i kind of failed miserably but i'm still trying at the moment. One thing that worries me is that moving the perspective up on the characters would get some parts of it way too small to have some details, and since we've planned to have a bit of customization, they might not be very noticeable, especially the torso and armor parts. Well i don't know, gotta try some more.

Buuut, one idea i had instead of changing the characters was to change the scenery.


Still, i'm not sure it helped, i guess its the black thing over the wall, i might have to make it even thinner or not have it at all, but then it would look very weird. Maybe also making the bricks larger vertically might help?

By the way, the game should be probably scaled 2x, but didn't think about specifics dimensions and other stuff, since we're still working out gameplay, and then i think i'll work the screen based on the HUD size.

Offline ColonelMustache

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #3 on: June 15, 2012, 02:48:14 am
I really like the sprites with no outlines. I think they read very well for how small they are and have a unique style to them. The black in the scene kind of clashes for me, looks a little too unnatural. The tree is awesome. I'm struggling with palettes too so I can't really help you there. Nice work.

Offline alessandroLino

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #4 on: June 15, 2012, 10:25:54 am
Little update!



Had a try on fixing the characters perspective. Feels like made new dudes and still didn't get it right. :mean: Girl looks kinda weird too and both look like kids.  :lol:
Played some games like Zelda and Bombermans (SNES ones) to have some ideas. Surprisingly, they had the same kind of perspective issues on the characters and scenery, but i guess it feels like it doesn't clash due to the giant head the characters had(?).

Well, if all else fails, i'll keep it like in the first mockup. It can't be that bad! :P

Offline JonasO

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #5 on: June 15, 2012, 04:44:41 pm
Little update!



Had a try on fixing the characters perspective. Feels like made new dudes and still didn't get it right. :mean: Girl looks kinda weird too and both look like kids.  :lol:
Played some games like Zelda and Bombermans (SNES ones) to have some ideas. Surprisingly, they had the same kind of perspective issues on the characters and scenery, but i guess it feels like it doesn't clash due to the giant head the characters had(?).

Well, if all else fails, i'll keep it like in the first mockup. It can't be that bad! :P

I think the reason they look like kids is the size of the head. You could make their body slightly larger - I'm very bad with proportions so I can't tell you how large exactly - or their faces smaller, but that would cost you the eyes.

But given the plastic-ness of the other game elements (like the walls and the ground), is that really a bad thing? They fit well together.

You could however try and give your stones and ground more structure, and see if that changes things for you.

For the "ceiling", you could try and recapture the structure of the wall, i.e. the ceiling could be the stones from above. In this case I would chose the 4 row variant, show the outer stones from above (in a darker shade) and then have any remaining space black.

Also in your last edit, the stones have different borders depending on whether they are aligned with the tile or not. I recommend taking the small borders (1 px) for a more "mature" and "realistic" look and 2 px for a more "plastic" and "toy-ish" look, because it makes the stones look more chubby.

For the natural walls, I'm thinking about that myself a lot, and I think one important thing is to keep the base line uneven. This is what I did:



Look at the "cliffs", they are not one straight line, but they keep going in and out. The implementation might not be perfect, but I think the idea is good.
Also, natural walls tend to crumble etc, so you might want to have some rubble lying around near to the natural walls.

But it all depends on whether you want to go for the "toy-ish" look or for the "realistic" look. The important thing is that you keep it consistent, then you can make anything look good.

Offline alessandroLino

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #6 on: June 16, 2012, 11:25:31 am
Ok i'm back!

First, @JonasO
I really appreciate the comments, but i'm not sure my brain could handle it all :lol: so i got some questions:
 - What did you mean about giving the walls and ground more structure? Detail it a bit more?
 - Having no eyes would make characters fit with the scenery i got now? Like in the first post i made?
 - Gotta be honest, i didn't understand a thing on the ceiling part. :yell:

English isn't my native language, so i have these issues :P

And this is a little update of what i got so far


I'm still unsure about the characters and perspective, some friends said to keep the old ones, some said i should try to fix, but i still couldn't make something nice that looks right. Maybe i shouldn't have started drawing characters in one file and scenery in another. Well, at least i learned something :ouch:

So i've worked on something else to relax, like the poorly drawn trees (they're fun!) and the pine one looks pretty horrible. Tried giving the trees another color and texture, but i guess these little dots didn't add much to it, and i'll probably keep working with the solid ones. Also, i should note that the game would be strictly tile based, and thats the reason the walls are huge!  My thoughts have been enlightened and i'm fixing this (hopefully)



The problem i had is that the way i had made it would leave alot of space between a walkable tile and the wall and the player would go like "hey theres alot of space here why can't i move?". The fix was fairly obvious, but i had to share my happiness. 
Now onto fixing that new brix :crazy:
 
« Last Edit: June 16, 2012, 01:17:41 pm by alessandroLino »

Offline JonasO

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #7 on: June 16, 2012, 02:41:38 pm
Ok i'm back!

First, @JonasO
I really appreciate the comments, but i'm not sure my brain could handle it all :lol: so i got some questions:
 - What did you mean about giving the walls and ground more structure? Detail it a bit more?
 - Having no eyes would make characters fit with the scenery i got now? Like in the first post i made?
 - Gotta be honest, i didn't understand a thing on the ceiling part. :yell:

English isn't my native language, so i have these issues :P



Ah I'm at fault also. I'm not a native speaker myself and I tend to speak in incomplete sentences. Be sure to ask if something is unclear and I'll try to explain what I meant. Your english is, in fact, quite good.

Here is some edit to illustrate my ideas:



The edit has some problems. Eg the stones which go from front to back don't have a tileable length (7 would be one such length), so I had to place them by hand.
Apart from that, it shows a lot of things, e.g. the ceiling (I see that you did something like that yourself, but keep in mind: if the ceiling is dark, there is a "roof", if it's bright, you're in the open) , making the doors walls and ground more "realistic" and less "plastic". (I tried to styles with the ground: one of them looks a little bit overdone to me).

You should definetly check out diablo I for some really awesome groundwork!


And this is a little update of what i got so far


I'm still unsure about the characters and perspective, some friends said to keep the old ones, some said i should try to fix, but i still couldn't make something nice that looks right. Maybe i shouldn't have started drawing characters in one file and scenery in another. Well, at least i learned something :ouch:

So i've worked on something else to relax, like the poorly drawn trees (they're fun!) and the pine one looks pretty horrible. Tried giving the trees another color and texture, but i guess these little dots didn't add much to it, and i'll probably keep working with the solid ones. Also, i should note that the game would be strictly tile based, and thats the reason the walls are huge!  My thoughts have been enlightened and i'm fixing this (hopefully)



The problem i had is that the way i had made it would leave alot of space between a walkable tile and the wall and the player would go like "hey theres alot of space here why can't i move?". The fix was fairly obvious, but i had to share my happiness. 
Now onto fixing that new brix :crazy:
 


The archer looks way off while he's aiming. Maybe he could change the angle in which he's standing (only while aiming), then you could get a better angle on the bow.

Your plants (which grow on the stones need a rework - I think the color is too bright, the way they grow is too regular (don't use the checkerboard style) and they partly seem to grow out of nowhere.

Offline alessandroLino

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #8 on: June 16, 2012, 11:24:27 pm
It looks awesome! Thanks alot!
And yes, the mockup with the archer looks pretty ugly, it was the first one i made and didn't really put much effort on it :lol:

Now to find my old diablo 1 disk right now to get some reference!

Offline JonasO

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Re: [WIP?] RPGish stuff mockup

Reply #9 on: June 17, 2012, 07:30:53 am
And yes, the mockup with the archer looks pretty ugly, it was the first one i made and didn't really put much effort on it :lol:

You should ; )


Now to find my old diablo 1 disk right now to get some reference!

Haha do that. Make sure to look at "act 1" in detail. I'm not sure if the details are applicable to your situation 1:1 (due to pixel restrictions and perspective), but they had a great way of dealing with their restrictions and still getting across that "gritty" feeling. They really conceive: You're in a dungeon that's hundreds of years old, and the only things which walk around here are foolish heroes, terrible monsters and the undead. And I believe they only used about 5 colors!
Just look at this alpha screenshot:

Or from the actual game:

And then they can also get some inspiration for your natural walls.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2012, 07:33:07 am by JonasO »