Monday, December 24, 2012

Beginner: Low Res Character.

Here's a step by step on doing a basic low res character. 

It's generally a good idea to start with characters of this size before moving on to larger sprites. In pixel art, you need to get used to working on a very small level, and working with large sprites from the get go won't help you develop the skills you need as a pixel artist.

Also, if you don't have a tablet, it's a good investment. After learning how to use it, it will speed up your creation of pixel art considerably. Don't assume that just because you're working with low res sprites, that it isn't as relevant.

Some quick tips,

1.Try to keep your first sprites under 40 pixels in height.
2. Don't rip sprites and edit them, always work from scratch. You'll learn faster.
3. Don't constrain yourself to realistic proportions.
4. Avoid drawing sprites that just face right all the time.
5. Look at other sprites online and make observations. Create rules for yourself based on what you see and try to reproduce the same techniques without using reference. 

And just as a little bonus, here are some variations of eyes, based off the most basic shape.

Basic Pixel art tutorial


I keep saying I'll make some tutorials, so here you go. These are more or less the first things I tell people when they ask me about getting better at pixel art. The basics.


One of the most important aspects of art is color, and unfortunately it's one of the things that people struggle with the most. Even the most basic concepts are all but neglected in art classes, and so pixel artists sometimes go years without learning about them at all.

As an example, I make games with rape, but generally I try to avoid raping the player's eyes with a color palette like say, this, 

That's what happens when you use nothing but 100% saturation. Fill an entire screen with colors like that and you'll give your players a headache pretty fast.

To avoid choosing poor colors, there are three general rules of thumb you can follow when it comes to hue and saturation,

1. The darker the color, the lower the saturation.
2. The brighter the color, the higher the saturation.
3. Shift the hue between shades. (For instance, yellow can be used as a highlight for green)

Here is what it looks like with more neutral colors, with the hue and saturation shifting between each shade.

In addition to being much easier on the eyes, shifting the hue and saturation also gives you more freedom when it comes to shading, and how you choose colors will distinguish you from other artists.


Next on the list of beginner mistakes is shading. Specifically, what is referred to as "pillow" shading. This is when an object is shaded with no regard for it's shape. Like so,

Now, shading is a little more unique to each artist, but here are some general tips.

1. Avoid simply shading the center of an object. (Pillow shading).
2. Choose a light source.
3. Choose the color of your outlines based on the shades of your pallet.
4. Try to limit yourself to 3 or 4 shades per color (The base color, a highlight, a shadow, and a color for your darkest outline). Only use more when necessary.

Here is an example of how you can shade an object using 4 colors, based on a chosen light source.

Keep it simple. Too many colors will add more work when it comes time to edit or animate your sprites.

Soft edges

Last but not least, for today, is softening edges. if you make three shades run parallel to each other, it will appear square and boxy. Getting rid of some of the "outline" will make the edge appear softer, and give the illusion of a curve, like so.

Anyhow, that's all for now. I'll do a tutorial based around creating actual sprites, tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Mini game progress

In case you missed the last post, I'm taking a break from the current game to work on something short and simple.

And how is it going? Well, in the past few days I did a bunch of graphics, created a few enemies, and began programming the game's engine. Unfortunately, I quickly realized that for the type of game I wanted to make, less than a months work wasn't going to yield enough content for a full game due to the nature of the gameplay. So instead, I took everything I had done so far and started turning it into a platformer, using the template I've been building up.

And so, I'm back to doing a low-res platformer. Surprising, I know.

The game will have 3 levels, 9 H-oriented enemies, and 3 bosses, at the minimum. If I keep my current pace, I'll be finished by the end of this month. Though, it will probably take an extra week or two to do CGs, the soundtrack, and testing, but I don't really want to have a game without those.

To be honest, this is probably what I should have done in the first place. High res games just seem to wear me out. This, on the other hand, will be done before I get the chance.

And yes, the protagonist this time around is a guy.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Taking a break

I'm a bit disappointed with myself lately when it comes to making progress on the game. For whatever reason, I'm just not all that inspired or enthusiastic about it, so development is still slow. It's frustrating being being held back by what is essentially a non-existent problem. So, I'm going to take a break for a bit. And by take a break, I mean I'm going to work on something else for a while, something short.

Basically I'm going to make something slightly different, and release it by the end of the month. I won't go into too much detail, but I will say this, it's not a platformer, the protagonist isn't female, but it's still a RoR hentai game. Except without the running part.

See you then.

And sorry I'm going so damn slow -__-

Monday, December 3, 2012


To clarify what I said my in my previous post, I'm not actually all that concerned with selling games to a more mainstream audience. I have no intention of censoring my games at a base level to appeal to more people.

That being said though, I don't like the idea of limiting word of mouth, or letting the content stop people who might otherwise want to play the game.  So, at the very least the game will have a toggle, since all it takes is a single line of code, and I'll need a toggle for certain content anyway, based on people's preferences. Beyond what, we'll see.

As for the game, it's getting there. Right now I'm trying to decide what abilities I want the player to start with, since it would be a shame to go through the whole game without some of them, and every ability you start with makes the game that much more interesting in the beginning. For instance in Kurovadis, I pretty much decided last minute that you should start with the ground punch, which was originally for destroying blocks. Then I added the passive roll attack to make up for it.

Anyhow, back to work..