AuthorTopic: [WIP] 16x16 Witch Protagonist  (Read 850 times)

Offline magedu

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[WIP] 16x16 Witch Protagonist

on: August 15, 2018, 02:06:56 pm
Good day, and thanks in advance for reading.

I'm currently working on a pixel platformer and am looking for advice on my protagonist.
I'm not particularly good at pixel art, but I've been looking into some tutorials and put a lot of time into this.

Eventually, I got something that I think isn't terrible, but could definitely use some work.
Here are the animations I've started so far: Idle, Walking, Death. Once I'm more confident on these, I'll be adding Dash, Jump and Spellcast animations.



Here is a very simple mockup of what the character might look like with the tile set I'm working on.


I'm mostly just looking for advice on the character herself, and this picture is just for reference.
I'd greatly appreciate any critiques, comments and advice!

Offline eishiya

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Re: [WIP] 16x16 Witch Protagonist

Reply #1 on: August 15, 2018, 02:58:05 pm
The character is cute!
The colours feel a bit dull, try using more hue-shifting to help make them more dynamic and more unified. For example, make all the shadows progressively more purple or blue.
Here's an edit to add more hue-shifting, and to dull down the hair a bit so it looks less neon:


Your shadows are almost all 1px wide and thus hard to actually see without zooming in (1px areas in pixel part largely get overwhelmed by the surrounding colours unless they're very high contrast). Unless your game will only ever be played at 4x+ zoom (and maybe even then), you may want to rework the shadows to be larger, so that they can really contribute to showing the character's 3D form.

Offline magedu

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Re: [WIP] 16x16 Witch Protagonist

Reply #2 on: August 15, 2018, 07:39:39 pm
Thanks a lot for the critiques.
I tried adding hue-shifting and better shadows. I really like how it came out!


I liked it so much I decided to enlarge it a bit, and I liked that even more!


Unfortunately I don't think I have the skill or time to fully animate the larger version for everything I need to, but I'll give it a try. Either way, the smaller version looks a lot better as well!

I'm going to try working on animating both. Let me know if you have any further suggestions for either version in the mean time.

Thanks again!

Offline eishiya

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Re: [WIP] 16x16 Witch Protagonist

Reply #3 on: August 15, 2018, 07:50:14 pm
I like the big one too! Although it may be more pixels to push, animating larger sprites can be easier in some ways, since you also have more room to convey the motion and all the different important details, and don't have to worry quite as much about stylisation.

Some of your shadow colours are so similar to the main ones that they're hard to see even zoomed in. In general, the smaller the area covered by a colour, the more contrast you need to make sure that colour still reads. So, you may want to increase the difference (contrast) between your main colours and the corresponding shadows and highlights. In some cases, you could just get rid of the low-contrast colours that aren't really helping define the forms, such as the additional shadow inside the cape, or the mid-shadow on the tunic.

Offline Helm

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Re: [WIP] 16x16 Witch Protagonist

Reply #4 on: August 29, 2018, 01:22:57 am
I love your little sprite! And actually, the bigger one helped me a lot to understand what you're going for, so I could give meaningful further help (hopefully) with the tiny one. I hope you don't mind, I did a small edit mainly to convey a pretty simple but on the face of it counterintuitive principle. Here's the edit:



What I wanted to tell you is that sometimes to make something more readable, you have to actually make it chunkier and to take detail away. You've squeezed a lot of character in this sprite, but I think you can go a bit further with tightening up the shapes that you do use, and (this is always my broken-record advice) consider how many single pixels you actually need, as opposed to larger clusters. Their arrangement conveys depth and priority better, I feel, if they're not just, you know two pixels in a corner in a diagonal arrangement, ambiguous and abstract for the mind to solve. Connect them in a tetromino, maximize your usage of a shape, if you're going to imply it anyway.

Your rendering is also quite soft, which I don't mind, it depends on what sort of background it'll go on, but I thought a bit more contrast might be worth exploring. You've got a looooaaadd of near-colors that generally in pixel art will only get in your way when you go to animate. I didn't clean the palette too much, but I just wanted to show you some cluster theory, because it'll help you so much to animate things later if you know why and how each of your shapes exists. Take the little animation in your pixel art program and flip between the two frames and a lot of changes I made will become apparent in their function. it's like a cascade, you fix one little cluster, then everything around that will have to shift to accommodate. Does that make sense?