AuthorTopic: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress  (Read 9383 times)

Offline terminal_arcade

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[wip] Robot Sprite in progress

on: April 17, 2007, 07:50:37 am
Working on a sprite for a platform-shooter game. The main character is a brass steam-powered robot (steam power evidence to come). This is what I've got so far. I have experience with run cycles and other animations, so I'm ready to dive into that, but I'd first like some feedback on the sprite, as I think I can do better. (Two possible versions shown.)



Intended to be viewed at 2x in-game. Thanks!
« Last Edit: April 17, 2007, 08:17:33 am by terminal_arcade »

Offline Sherman Gill

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #1 on: April 17, 2007, 08:04:24 am
Oh god it's a putrid yellow. If it's supposed to look brass, I think you need to take a real look at the colors in Brass, as that shade of yellow, if it were to appear in the first place, would not be the mid-tone.
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Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #2 on: April 17, 2007, 08:16:38 am
Meep! I had just picked some arbitrary temporary colours and had gotten used to them so forgot to change. How's this?



I guess it doesn't read very well on this background. Readability is one of my concerns though. I'm definitely staying away from a black ouline.

Edited original post for clarity.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2007, 08:19:37 am by terminal_arcade »

Offline MrNormS

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #3 on: April 18, 2007, 04:50:36 am
IMO you need to redesign the character; this Samus-esque reads as just that.  It needs to be unique, like any good main character.  Currently he looks awfully generic.  This may change with detail and such but, as... I think one of the guys who worked on MDK said, a good game character needs a memorable silhouette.  I never even played that game but when I think about memorable characters... I always think of that game... and I just lost the game. 

I think that for a good game involving steam powered robots you should look at giving him more realistic proportions.  Currently he looks too cartoony, especially considering how intense a steam-punk robot could look. 

Also, a little sel-out would amp up your readability, which in your previous game sprites hasn't been great.


Oh and I went unicycling today.

Offline AdamAtomic

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #4 on: April 18, 2007, 05:50:23 am
Samus-esque?   ???  Anyways, the things I think you need to focus on, in order of priority, are:

1 - Design.  Right now, you don't have one.  You have a guy with what we must assume is a helmet, and he's also wearing boots.  This does not qualify!  Even with the "steam power evidence" not included yet, there should be SOMEthing in the design that helps us to clearly understand this is, at the very least, a robot, and not say a Samus or a Megaman.  E.g. points of articulation, gears, nuts & bolts, etc.  All these things will help your design to communicate more clearly to the viewer what you intended, and they will help your design to become a unique creation instead of a generic blob!

2 - Basic Shading.  Right now, you don't have any.  This part takes a LOT of practice, and some very clear and focused thinking, so don't get discouraged, but DO at least try.  I think this tutorial is a great place to start!  He uses clear language and very concise examples to illustrate the basic fundamentals of light.

3 - Interesting Colors.  Right now, you don't have any!  Use a wider array of colors to make your design stand out and read more easily.  Use color theory to your advantage (reds advance, blues recede, the sky is blue so most shadows are too, shiny metal is generally reflective which is a whole big can of worms).

4 - Anatomy/Posture.  As you are designing a robot, this is not super-number-one-top-priority, but because you are designing an apparently humanoid robot, you need to take these things under consideration, because our minds will expect certain proportions.  Right now he's got some pretty long arms and a pretty big head, and his pose looks very awkward and uncomfortable.

Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #5 on: April 18, 2007, 06:01:42 am
Thanks for the comprehensive reply, AdamA. I was posting it at this wip stage to get feedback on (1)design and (4)posture, and with these couple of posts down I'm definitely going to try some other ideas out. I'm definitely not spent, considering the time I spend thinking about steam powered robots during the day. :D

I've probably read that tutorial half a dozen times since I found it a few months ago, and practiced what's described. I definitely have some sort of grasp of that kind of thing. I wasn't trying to do more than fill in some shapes at this point really, but had I tried to make it shiny and finished I admit I would have had trouble. I have a tough time translating what I know from traditional media down to such small-scale pixels. Reflection, for example, is rather subtle for me to depict here. I'll work on it.

Offline MrNormS

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #6 on: April 18, 2007, 11:10:15 pm
@AdamAtomic

I just mean character design-wise... i.e. helmet + gun hand == samus from the metroid series, at least in my head

Offline Gil

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #7 on: April 19, 2007, 02:37:05 am
What about MegaMan? And a ton of other characters?

This looks nothing like Samus imo...

Offline Razz

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #8 on: April 19, 2007, 03:12:30 am
Gil wins. Cartooniness wise, idle stance wise, armor wise ... Megaman makes a better comparison.

Do you have the "steam-powered evidence" drawn up yet? I think that'll add some individuality to the character.

Offline MrNormS

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #9 on: April 19, 2007, 06:04:18 pm
Either way, it reminds both of us of someone else.  The point is that it's been done and overdone IMO.

Offline Gil

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #10 on: April 20, 2007, 12:28:50 pm
It didn't remind me of anything at all. If you're comparing that to Megaman or Samus, then you're just not looking right. I just found it so silly that you think gun-arms are so metroid. And they're certainly not overdone...

Back to topic please?

Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #11 on: April 20, 2007, 08:00:21 pm
Okay, here's an update with a higher-contrast background, probably closer to the colour scheme of the future game:


I fixed up the pose, the arm cannon, and a few other things. Hopefully made it more robotic? For those 'idle animations' you get when you stay still in platform games for a long time, I intend to add some steam, and also for movements. Hard to show it when he's perfectly still though. Coming soon. ;)
« Last Edit: April 20, 2007, 08:06:09 pm by terminal_arcade »

Offline Gil

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #12 on: April 21, 2007, 01:15:13 am
I'm really loving this! Good work, can't wait to see more.

I did like the eyes better as a visor, robots weren't made for stereoscopic vision  :P

Offline MrNormS

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #13 on: April 21, 2007, 06:38:17 am
I hate to use telepathy but I'm thinking the hand should be a claw of some description.  IT would look sweeeet.

Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #14 on: April 21, 2007, 07:53:57 am
Yes, NormS, you know very well that I'm planning to make his hand into a claw. That'll definitely add some character, and banish any thought that it's a human in there, while distinguishing my character from any other arm-cannon character. I'm having a heck of a time though.

AdamAtomic: you said I'm shading-less. I guess I've worked on it a little since then, but as I said initially, I'm lost on where to start for something like this. Tips? Anyone else? I tried various outline styles early on, but none seemed to work.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2007, 03:18:17 am by terminal_arcade »

Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #15 on: April 25, 2007, 03:30:29 am
Slow updates. :yell: I blame school.

I agree Gil. Brought visor back. Also, hopefully he's unmistakably robotic now.  ;)
   

(Remember it's intended for 2x zoom)
Version without arm gun to show crotch area (which will be visible during animations, I'm sure).
I'd like to get a little more feedback before I start animating. Does the arm gun look round enough? How would I make it rounder anyway?

Edit: alternate arm cannon with narrower end, and chubbier on the whole. Preferences?
« Last Edit: April 25, 2007, 03:47:02 am by terminal_arcade »

Offline Helm

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #16 on: April 25, 2007, 04:30:09 am


I definately liked the old dynamic stance legs much much more.

Play around with colors more, don't use full-saturation colors unless there's a reason.

Consider your lightsources more. Where is the light coming from? How does it interact with the surfaces and edges it hits?

The secondary lightsource is just there to show what can be done with few colors if you're inventive. Note the dark fullsat color used to give an 'ambience' to the spite, of a specific tone. Purple, in this case which works with yellow well.

Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #17 on: April 25, 2007, 05:33:18 am
Thanks a lot for the edit, Helm. You accomplished several of the things I had been trying to get working (secondary lightsource, that same pale blue shade) so neatly. I'll definitely learn a lot from it. You also bring to 'light' some mistakes I made (pun intended).

Offline Helm

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #18 on: April 25, 2007, 05:42:36 am
No worries, here to help.

Offline terminal_arcade

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #19 on: May 03, 2007, 03:49:29 am
Whoa, long time between posts. So many tests at school this time of year.


Feedback appreciated.

Offline Rydin

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Re: [wip] Robot Sprite in progress

Reply #20 on: May 03, 2007, 04:08:26 am
This is a major improvement from your first piece (y) great work!  I think what it lacks right now is pixel-level polish...you're on the right track with the small bits of AA you have, but I think you could perhaps make the palette more dynamic and do some closer refining on edges and patches of shadow...you may also want to think about upping the contrast a bit--it all sorta melts together color-wise; a pure white hue here and there would do wonders....but other than that, this is a solid improvement.  Good stuff!
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