Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Pixel Art and new project

I have been busy lately with all sorts of things, time off work, ran a marathon but I did start learning pixel art recently so thought I would blog about it.

There many types of artists, sadly I fall into the category of a coder with a zero game budget who has to make all his own art or will have no game. After making the two Jam games I felt it was time to return to my main game "Endure" but while wasting some time on FaceBook I saw a message on a group I follow saying they were celebrating their 10 Year anniversary:

Wing Wing Shoot Bag Facebook group

Anyway, I offered to make the group a game based on a feature length movie they made some 6 years ago about a transgender cop called "Susan Balaka", they also make short comedy sketches but this had a full story which would be awesome to make into a game.

Oh yes Pixel Art,the game would require lots of animated scenes and pixel style art, so I started having a go:

First Attempt at Balaka
This was a bit shoddy and the guns look like socks! Next I found some forums and asked for help, you may find these useful:

Final Boss Blues
Way of the Pixel
Pixel Joint
Reddit - pixelart

With some help and reading tutorials I broke a whole new set of pixel art rules and came up with these:

Two main characters (Line from the movie)
One rule I broke early on was using far to many colours, the advise I received most often referred to colour palette and contrast between colours. A useful site for checking how many colours your using:

After some help from Final Boss Blues I started adding some shading to the characters faces, as you progress you look back at your earlier work and realise you will need to redo them over.

Trying to add detail

There will be all sorts of assets in the Balaka game, I had a go at making an arcade machine to test the use of isometric angles with pixel art, I am far from good at this but you can see what it is and its not too ugly?

After making several static images that I tried my hand at animation, I have made simple animations for other games but I always seem to make some sort of mistake, here the flash from the screen is not really pixel art as such and the feet/body position is all wrong.

So there you have it, I am now learning pixel art while making a game. I would suggest finding some good pixel artists and following their work, realise that you will make mistakes, when asking for help do not take criticisms to heart and say thanks when people take the time out to give help.

"His head looks like a potato" - I could have tried to defend this comment but its true and made me laugh.

Happy Pixeling!


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