AuthorTopic: my little world, monsters! ... [please C&C]  (Read 105922 times)

Offline Sherman Gill

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #30 on: May 20, 2008, 06:56:21 am
Well, for one they've got a wider range of facial expressions, or atleast each expression is reflected more in their face then Bilou's.
It would help alot if someone more knowledged in character design then me comes in though :-[

JohnK has a LOT to say on character design:
http://johnkstuff.blogspot.com/
Unfortunately, it's buried, rather deep, and I'm too lazy at the moment to fish it out. :(
Ugh edit again: Digging made much easier by the rather hard to see search function. Fuck. Last month I went through 7 pages of stuff to find the character design stuff again :(.
http://johnkstuff.blogspot.com/search?q=Character+Design&x=0&y=0
http://johnkstuff.blogspot.com/search?q=Character+Design&updated-max=2008-01-09T09%3A19%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=20
« Last Edit: May 20, 2008, 07:04:09 am by Sherman Gill »
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But I like shrimps more haha ;)

Offline Helm

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #31 on: May 20, 2008, 07:29:02 am
Yes, the main characters in Fury of the Furries are conceptually flawed to a degree, within the framework of most schools of thought on how to design main characters.

Quote
Even Kirby had unique features.  He grew 4x his size when he puffed in air, for one, and his ability to absorb enemy features helped (it changed his appearance in later games), and his design was originally just a placeholder sprite.

Kirby has memorable animations and abilities. This is key, any single frame of a Kirby sprite is pretty much a pink blob doing gay (happy! I mean happy!) things. Yet in motion he's pretty memorable. This is a good lesson to learn for your main character, PypeBros: animate cleanly, extensively, with character and purpose, all the various abilities of your ball sprite mainman. Now, I won't lie to you, ball main characters are the absolute staple of 'hello, I am a programmer making a game for the first time!' types of games. They evolved directly from programmer placeholder art, and they're not a very good idea for a game character outside that context, Rayman legs and arms notwithstanding. I'd go as far as to say that any other platonic solid would be more interesting to look at than a ball. Give me a triangle or a square or a polyhedron rolling around with little Rayman arms and legs and expressions, I'll be slightly, just slightly more endeared to them.

All that being said, the 'hello I am a ball' main character didn't stop 'Within A Deep Forest' by the Knytt dude from being a good game, but were he to come to Pixelation and ask for critique for his game, he'd rightly be said that a ball is no good main character, no matter how good the gameplay mechanics came out to be.

Offline sharprm

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #32 on: May 20, 2008, 08:01:42 am
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJs5_k7aBxc&feature=related

I just thought of this cartoon. Maybe you might find it relevant. It has a cartoon fly (ball shape with feet) that is very expressive.
Modern artists are told that they must create something totally original-or risk being called "derivative".They've been indoctrinated with the concept that bad=good.The effect is always the same: Meaningless primitivism
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Offline PypeBros

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #33 on: May 20, 2008, 02:50:06 pm
Now, I won't lie to you, ball main characters are the absolute staple of 'hello, I am a programmer making a game for the first time!' types of games. They evolved directly from programmer placeholder art, and they're not a very good idea for a game character outside that context, Rayman legs and arms notwithstanding.

i didn't realised it was *that* common for hobby-developed games :P And, yes, i have to admit that sometimes i, too, hate having that ball as main character, as it's impossible to dress, and every non-trivial pose is a challenge to render properly.

I'll keep on practicing on other kind of characters for minigames, but i have a whole platformer to do for this guy, so i'll go on for this time, provide memorable monsters, movements and fun gameplay ... and we'll see.

(in case i sound "lazy gfx" here, think of it as "redoing-from-scratch-everytime coder" instead :)

Offline ndchristie

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #34 on: May 20, 2008, 04:10:12 pm
another thing to keep in mind is that many game which use simple characters use them as "the multitudes" :



now, Pikmin and Zoombinis are not setting records for character design, but they still work pretty well.  Also, i'm not so much for the "give him an item" because this feels a little bit forced.  If you really define his attitude, it should come across in the character designs with clear choices - not tack-ons.  if you can't really define the character, or at least define important aspects of the character, a couple of horns are not going to make him memorable.
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Offline zeid

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #35 on: May 21, 2008, 12:36:21 am

I cleaned up my edit and finished off the whole body. I think in regards to character design you have a few options; You could leave the character as is and bring more character to him through animations/abilities. However I think what question you and everyone else should really be asking is "what is he?" or "what is he like?"
An animal? A full stop? A pebble? A water droplet?

What exactly Kirby is, is rather ambiguous. However kirby is aimed at young/beginner players predominately and hence gets away with a very simple and generic design. Because kirby is aimed towards new gamers he is one of the first blob characters many gamers will encounter, hence other blob characters immediately feel like Kirby copies. To be fair your character seems to express a more mature nature then that of kirby and I would find it odd to see something with disjointed arms and legs absorbing people in the way kirby does. So there is some character there, but it is still a very simple and common design that beginner game makers use all the time.

I would say ask the question and see what you get, if you get the answer, "Bilou is a Bilou..." then you will need to express his character through his animations and abilities. Not necessarily a bad thing at all.

Another way you could look at going with this which hasn't been addressed yet is through a dramatically different style to the art of the game. A good example of this is Okami

He is a wolf with fire and a big plate on his back, but the art style dramatically adds character to the creature. It ties him more so into the theme of the story and makes him very recognizable.
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Offline tehwexxl0rz

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #36 on: May 21, 2008, 02:08:19 am
Good post, zeid! The character really does need some unique flair. A specific way I think you could give Bilou some more personality is to simply add a mouth. That's not gonna solve the problem completely, but I think it'll help.

Edit (based on zeid's):


Hope that helps any. :)


*removed response to OT discussion*
« Last Edit: May 21, 2008, 03:40:18 am by tehwexxl0rz »

Offline Helm

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #37 on: May 21, 2008, 03:33:30 am
I edited your post above to take away the flames, yet you edit them back in, just to pick a fight. Instead you will get a strike, as will anyone that derails this thread any longer.

Offline tehwexxl0rz

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #38 on: May 21, 2008, 03:46:41 am
I edited your post above to take away the flames, yet you edit them back in, just to pick a fight. Instead you will get a strike, as will anyone that derails this thread any longer.
Wait, do you mean me? I'm sorry! I left the "Modify Post" window open while I was working on my edit! I didn't know you had ever edited it! I only meant to update my post with the edit. I never would have put those comments back intentionally!

Do you understand? I know you have the authority to give strikes. But in this case I'd really appreciate if you'd reconsider. Sorry again. :(

Offline infinity+1

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Re: my little world ... [please C&C]

Reply #39 on: May 21, 2008, 03:48:20 am
i took a crack at trying to give him a little bit more character, without changing the design.
take what you will from it:

« Last Edit: May 21, 2008, 04:00:27 am by infinity+1 »