AuthorTopic: Hiring a 2D artist for a Unity video game much in the vein of Plants VS Zombies!  (Read 1851 times)

Offline therookies

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Hello dear community,

First, please note that I originally speak French. But I have been working on a daily basis with English-speaking people so I feel very comfy with it :)

I am a 28-years old indie video game developer living in Quebec, Canada. I am using the Unity3D engine. Right now I this is a one-man army development, and my first commercial title. I did a few various tech demos and experiments that you can explore on my personal blog over there: http://michaeldionnecreativemuseum.blogspot.ca/

I am also an artist; I do concept arts (especially for characters) and 3D modelling in 3DStudioMax since over 15 years now. However, I would like to hire a talented 2D artist to do the art for my game, "Legend of Rookies", so I can focus mainly on coding and on concept arts in a quest to develop a better and more complete masterpiece (games should always be masterpieces, not products!).

I cannot describe the game in every detail publicly because the concept and gameplay elements are very innovative (and no, the video of the game on my blog is not up-to-date, this is wanted). However, it feels a lot like Plants VS Zombies, but with a lot of medieval/fantasy RPG elements. There is a class system, an experience points system, and much more. But overly, the game is not intended to be too deep or hardcore; it is designed to be easily playable by everybody; from young gamers to women, to people who usually don't like games, and also to hardcore gamers.

The art style must be cartoonish. I prefer digital painting over vector graphics, though.
The artist would always be provided with concept art or reference pictures (so, you must show some initiative sometimes in your creativity because you have a creative margin).
The artist would have to do simple character 2D animations, like what you can do with Toon Boom Studio. However, all frames of a cycle need to be in the same spritesheet. If you feel comfortable/motivated with creating the visuals but not animate them, this is not ideal but I may still be interested (as I can ensure the animation part myself). But if this is the case, you would have to compensate with more creation.

The main characters are cute creatures that look like ewoks in Star Wars and that live in a village on an isolated island. The rest of the world are suddenly discovering that medium-sized island, and various types of characters (vampires, werewolves, krakens, giant crabs, trolls, vikings, and many other monsters) begin to invade the island. Your role is to defend the village, build fortifications for it and fight against waves of enemies. Between two battles, you can go complete various mini-quests around the island, fighting smaller enemies to level up your characters and find loot. Example, you send a team of hunters fighting a giant crab on the beach shore, and you get food for the whole village once it is killed.

There are 9 different classes, and each one is evolving when some level is reached (we need different graphics once they evolved, so we need in fact 18 different hero/ally characters). Here is the list, to give you an idea (a complete Game Design Document will be supplied to you so you know exactly all details):

-Knight > Braggadocio
(you can check the concept art I did at: http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/855/picture0002mh.jpg/)
-Hunter > Ranger
-Chaman > Necromancer
-Druid > Elementalist
-Biologist > Beast Rider
-Blacksmith > Engineer
-Trojan > Spartan
-Voodoo > Pyromaster
-Thief > Ninja

All classes have common animation cycles:

-Idle (ideally we could also make an Idle2 and even an Idle3 so we can put some randomness since this is the animation we will see most of the time);
-Idle weak (when HP points are low, the character is looking weaker);
-Block/Dodge;
-Block/Dodge weak;
-Being hit;
-Walk (because unlike Plants VS Zombies, we can move the characters! But only 1 simultaneously);
-Walk weak;
-Die;
-Jump;
-Fall (example, in a trap in the ground, and also re-used at the end of the jump cycle);
-Pull up (example, from a trap in the ground);
-Stun (example, when there is an earthquake spell being casted by a character);

Quantity and nature of attacks/spells are varying from one class to another. However, we will try to keep that part as simple as possible and reuse the same animation over and over again. For the knights class, we will change their pose as their attacks will be different not really in the moves they do, but depending on the type of weapon (two-handed sword, axe, warhammer, flail) they are equipped with.

There will also be a few other NPC characters to do (village inhabitants), and a few animals the Biologist class can spawn (crabs, turtles, jellyfishes, sharks, pirhanas, crocodiles, bears, bats, toucan bird, etc.). Those animals will only have 4 animation cycles: idle, attack, being hit and die.
I am still deciding about the nature and quantity of animals, and of enemies.

Technical-wise, I am flexible. I just want the graphics to be beautiful and colorful. Only the enemies are dark. The quantity of frames needed per second is also up to you, but there will be a maximum of frames per spritesheet in order to keep the memory usage low (I plan to support Android tablets).

I am also very flexible on the horary. I understand that artists don't get inspiration every day and when they are tired. I am gonna be a good and comprehensive boss. However, results must be delivered on time at the end (example, every period of 2-4 weeks).

The artist will also have to create many backgrounds (stages like Plants VS Zombies). There will be stages set in tropical jungle, lush forest, village/castle gates, rocky mountains, caverns, snow fields, wheat fields, and many on beach shores. Those backgrounds will require to have each environment element (big rock, tree, hut, building, etc.) on a seperate, transparent layer so I can then move them around to create many new levels from the same art, and also because that due to the nature of the Plants VS Zombies-like gameplay, I need to make their transparency channel fade in or out when the cursor is over the element, so we can easily see what is hidden behind.

I also need all graphics to have one lighting setup for daylight and another setup for nightlight (dark, blueish tint).


Well, this is a lot of details and information, but I prefer you know more right from the start than not enough. I invite you to read my entire blog, since you can see what kind of person I am.


Depending on your level of motivation, talent, creativity, style and reliability, I am willing to give the artsit major royalties (%) over all sales of the game. The game will be released for sure on PC and Mac, and like I already explained I also plan to support Android, so sales will be quite considerable if the game is a success.

However, royalties are a bonus. I don't have a LOT of money, so maybe royalties can compensate if you believe in the project as much as me. But I can still offer up to 300$USD PER MONTH for a period that can last as long as 24 months. I also dedicate myself to continue coding the game full-time, at least 40 hours per week. So you don't have to worry; I can get afloat myself financially, focus full-time, and even pay you to become my first teammate. I am sure I will find one nice artist on Pixelation that will be interested. Basic knowledge of the Unity interface is a real advantage.

If a contract so long is a problem for you, please note that we can take breaks from time to time, so you can still get and complete some other contracts or projects on sideline, or simply relax with your family.
I also have a family, so I understand that we must reach our goal at any cost. I only hope to have a lot of fun doing it, with a nice artist I can be proud of. Think of this ad, as a John Carmack that is searching for a John Romero (except I won't let you buy a Ferrari with the money that is intended for the game development!).


Please show me your portfolio =) I want to see cartoon, digital paintings, anything you think is representing you the most as a professional artist! Don't forget to let me know if you know Unity, and your level of knowledge with it.

You can either send me a PM over here on Pixelation, or send me an e-mail. Both will be considered, but chances are I will notice your e-mail faster than your PM.
My e-mail is pvzkiller@gmail.com.


Best regards,


Michael Dionne
Acton Vale, Qc
Canada
J0H 1A0
« Last Edit: September 22, 2012, 12:53:34 am by therookies »

Offline heavycat2

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