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Hand2Hand: Looking for graphics, sounds, and music


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#1 onpon4   Members   -  Reputation: 288

Posted 14 April 2011 - 06:02 PM

Project name:
Hand2Hand

Brief description:
It is a two-player game (though 1-player is possible against an AI), with each player having their own first-person view very similar to said flash game. Each player has two "arms" which can be moved freely into any of 9 quadrants (in a 3x3 grid). Arms automatically block in the quadrant they are in. By pressing a "punch" button, one for each arm, the respective arm will punch the quadrant it is in.

Each player has a certain number of hitpoints (amount specified by the players). Once a player loses all hitpoints, the game ends and the other player is declared the winner.

Unlike Nose Hairs of Fury, Hand2Hand offers no advantages to any player and includes no strategy. Therefore, the winner is determined solely by reflexes and hand-eye coordination. To compliment this design, the game allows the speed of punches to be adjusted, effectively speeding up or slowing down the game.

As alluded to in the last paragraph, there are no differences between characters. Different characters merely act as different looks, much like Super Mario War.

I still don't have any character graphics, so coding is being put on hold until I can get graphics for at least one character. The game is very close to complete; once I have some character graphics, I suspect adding the finishing touches will take no more than a couple weeks. An alpha version will be officially released once I have at least one full character (including both graphics and sounds), one background, and one music track.

Here is a link to the game as it stands now.

http://www.box.net/shared/dti5isqh2s

The link above contains the Python source file as well as some others. It may not be exactly how the game stands on my end, but it is enough for you to get an idea of what the game looks like. To run it, install Python 2.6 or 2.7 (www.python.org) and Pygame (www.pygame.org), then run hand2hand.py with Python.

Target aim:
The game will be free and open source, released under the GNU General Public License (version 3). I hope that later versions will have a sort of video-splicing mode, allowing a number of video segments separated (and partially determined) by battles, which would allow 3rd parties to create and potentially commercially distribute "interactive cartoons/anime" with it, but the game itself (and content included with it) will always be free. In other words, I never intend to make a dime off of it.

Compensation:
Unfortunately, I am not in much of a position to compensate anyone monetarily. All I can offer is inclusion in the credits and a link to any website you may have. For the most part, you should only contribute if you are genuinely interested in the project.

Technology:
The game is programmed in Python 2.6/2.7 using the Pygame library, which is based around SDL.

The game is meant to be as cross-platform as possible. It should run on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X, since only Pygame (SDL) is used. It is intended for desktop computers and laptops (i.e. Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux), but it may be able to run on some other slightly different platforms. One example I can think of off the top of my head is the Pandora handheld.

Talent needed:
I need the following people:
  • Graphics artists, preferably ones who draw in an anime or cartoon style. A pixel artist would also be nice to draw some in-game graphics. Pixel art is not a good idea for other (character and background) graphics, however, since they will be scaled up with a bilinear filter (which may distort pixel-level work).
  • Sound recorders/music composers. You must be able to make your creations into WAV (for sound) or OGG (for music) format.

Quite a few music composers have offered assistance, which is appreciated, but you will not really be able to do anything until some graphics are made.

Team structure:
I do not have an active team. For this project, the current contributors are:
  • Me - Programming, testing, dummy graphics
Any new contributors in the future will be added to this list once they have made their first contribution. Being on this list does not imply any sort of expectation of you; it is simply to recognize and document your contributions.

See Additional Info below for what exactly I need.

Website:
I don't have a website for this particular project, but I have a website, Onpon's Games and Apps. It can be found at:
http://onpon.co.nr/

Contacts:
My E-mail addresses are the following:
onpon4@yahoo.com
onpon4@gmail.com

The former is the address I mainly use; the latter is mostly an alternative E-mail address.

I can also do instant messaging from either of my accounts (Yahoo or Gmail), and I can IM from my cell phone with my Yahoo account (which can be useful in situations where I don't have access to the internet). Again, my account for both is onpon4.

My website also has a contact form, which sends an E-mail to my Yahoo account, though I don't recommend using it in this case.

Previous Work by Team:
I have created two other games which are found on my website: Bowser Engine, a platformer made with Game Maker, and Senso, a simple arcade-style multiplayer shooter made with Python and Pygame. I have also created some other games much longer ago, namely the two which are still found on my old YoYo Games page, with Game Maker.

Additional Info:
Here I will describe in detail what I need. If you have any questions, please ask.

Character Sprites
What I need most is characters for the game. As mentioned before, there is no difference between characters, but a good selection of different possible characters will make the game look nicer.

For graphics, I will accept any style. If you are unsure of which style to do, try an anime/manga or otherwise cartoony style. All character images must be PNGs with per-pixel alpha transparency. Any size is fine, but it must be a 1:1 aspect ratio (that is, square). I would recommend a size of at least 400x400 pixels, but any size is fine. Note that graphics which are smaller than the screen size will be scaled up using a bilinear filter, so depending on the style of the art, it may be best to scale the graphics upwards using the filter of your choice (i.e. nearest-neighbor or hqx), in order to help bypass the bilinear scaler.

I am interested in any and all characters you can draw. This included known icons (like Tux), parodies, and even characters from anime and cartoons (but see the next paragraph if you wish to draw a character whose copyright you don't have the rights to). I will also accept completely original ideas. Since I would like to include as many different characters as possible, I believe it would be best for the artists to choose what characters they wish to draw. For example, if you're a big fan of Linux, you might draw the sprites for Tux, and if you want to make fun of Dragonball Z, you might draw the sprites which parody Vegeta.

If you choose to draw copyrighted characters (not including parodies or other use of copyrights that would be considered "fair use" under U.S. law), I will attempt to secure written permission from the respective copyright holders, but note that should I receive no response, the art will be left as a separate download (an "add-on", in a sense) which will be immediately taken down should the copyright holders demand it (or respond to the request with a "no" at a later time). If the copyright holder explicitly denies permission, I will not officially accept the graphics at all; that is, I will not link to them or offer them as a download myself. This is something you should keep in mind when choosing the character you wish to draw.

If you would like some ideas of what to draw, here are a few:
  • Reference a meme. Muslamic Ray Guns (which is rather new) comes to mind.
  • Draw a cliché character (ninja master wolf, street thug, etc)
  • Do what SuperTuxKart does: draw representations of open source products.
  • Draw historical people, like Abraham Lincoln. People like Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin presented in a comedic way could be very entertaining, as well.
  • Haven't we all wanted to battle with dinosaurs as children? <img src='http://public.gamedev.net/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/wink.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=';)' />
  • On that same note, modern animals could be an interesting addition, especially if it's a monkey.
  • Have you ever run into haunted electronic equipment? Neither have I, but they would be fun to play as (or fight against), don't you think?

Due to the nature of gameplay, character sprites need to be done in a split-sprite method. There are three main parts: the body, the left arm, and the right arm. It should be possible to take any body image, any left arm image, and any right arm image, stick them together, and come up with a good (or at least decent) looking image. In addition to these parts, there are also a few images which will be displayed by themselves, such as the death animation. These must look good on their own without other sprites applied to them.

All images for a given character should be exactly the same size; this is a simplification for artists to prevent the need for config files. You can think of each image as being a separate layer of the same image.

A quick note: After reading the next couple paragraphs, you might find this a bit overwhelming. Note that I will be very happy to accept anything you can do, even if it's in pieces. Also, to start, you may want to consider using "backup" animations, described a little further below, which will dramatically decrease the work you need to do to have a working character (of course, this should only be temporary, to be fixed later by yourself or another artist).

Character sprites consist of a number of separate "animations", about 80 in total. An "animation" is a particular set of images used for a particular purpose. It is possible to animate any of them, though many can easily just be single images. A list of all of these "animations" can be found in the following text file:

http://www.box.net/shared/py21j3hm3q

Images must follow a particular naming convention which is based on the "animation" names. They take the form "{anim_name}-{num}.png". {anim_name} is the animation name listed in the text file above. {num} is the image index, with 0 being the first and every subsequent image adding 1. For example, "foo-0.png" is the first image of the animation "foo", and "foo-3.png" is the fourth image.

If a particular animation name is found to not exist, the game then looks for a backup animation, whose name is the beginning of the animation name, terminated by a dash ("-"). For example, if the animation the game looks for is "abc-xyz", then the backup animation will be called "abc". This can be useful in some cases.

It must be noted that the same images which are used for normal arms are also used for blocking. That is, there is no "block" animation. This is important to keep in mind when creating the "arm" animations.

While most animation names are pretty self-explanatory, some may be a bit confusing. I will explain those here.

The animations beginning with "fp" (i.e. "fprightarm-up") are "first-person" animations. These are images of the arms seen by the player wielding them, in much the same way that you see the gun you are carrying in first-person shooters. In contrast, the animations with the same name minus the "fp" (i.e. "rightarm-up") are "view" animations, which are seen by the other player.

"body-rightpunch" and "body-leftpunch" are shown in place of "body" when the respective punch is initiated. This can be used, for example, to change the character's facial expression. These are animated in the same way as "punch" animations; see below.

"recover" is the animation played after "hurt", i.e. the character getting up. Note that during both of these animations, gameplay is paused. It is best to keep these animations fairly brief so as not to be an annoyance to players.

Most animations play at a constant rate of 60 frames per second. The one exception is punch animations, which are stretched out over a time specified by the user. In all cases, any images which did not have a chance to be displayed (either because of lag or because the "punch time", as it's called, was too fast), the missing images are displayed to create a motion trail or "blur" effect. Therefore, it is best to use as many frames as you are comfortable creating for punch animations.

Character Sounds
Character sounds should of course be made to work with character graphics, or at least they should sound good with the graphics.

Character sounds are stored in the same directory as character sprites and are also named in a very similar way. That is, there can be any number of "indexes" of sounds for each sound. This might seem a bit confusing. Quite simply, whenever a sound needs to be played, an index is chosen at random and the sound of that index is played. As a review, the naming structure is in the form "{name}-{num}.wav", where {name} is the sound name and {num} is the index. For example, "foo-0.wav" would be the first version of the sound "foo", and "spark-5.wav" would be the sixth version of the sound "spark".

The following sound names are possible:

  • punch
  • block
  • hurt
  • die
  • recover
  • win
  • voice-punch
  • voice-block
  • voice-hurt
  • voice-die
  • voice-recover
  • voice-win

None of them are required. Most are self-explanatory. "hurt" is played when the character is hurt. "block" is played when the character blocks a punch. "recover" is played when the character recovers from being hurt. The sounds beginning with "voice" play at the exact same time as the sounds with similar names, but only one of them will play at a time, simulating the limitations of speech (as it would be rather awkward to hear someone say two things at once).

most of the sounds should probably be around .25 seconds long, though it depends highly on the sound.

Backgrounds
Backgrounds are much simpler than characters, since all that's needed is a single bitmap image. All background images must be bitmap images (i.e. PNG, JPG) without any alpha transparency.

Size doesn't really matter, but all backgrounds must have a 2:1 aspect ratio (i.e. 800x400 pixels). Also, each background should be split down the middle, so that it's more like two separate square backgrounds taking place in the same area which have been pasted together. The left side will be seen by player 1, while the right side will be seen by player 2. It is important for there to be no continuity (except for the theme of the background) between the left side and right side, as continuity would cause it to look like the two characters are standing next to each other rather than facing each other.

Music
Music tracks should be made to go with a background. Each track must be loopable, though a start-up track (which will be played once before the loopable part begins) is permitted. They should also play for at least 0:30, but not much longer than 1:00; remember that Hand2Hand is supposed to be relatively fast-paced and quick.

Cursors
The game uses some cursors to show the players where exactly each arm is and also to alert players of incoming attacks. These should probably be done by pixel artists. I have some working cursors which I drew up; you can find them in the download above.

Each cursor should be 32x32 pixels, with per-pixel alpha transparency enabled (so they should be PNGs). All cursors can be animated if you wish. Cursors are needed for: the respective player's arms, the respective opponent's arms, and a "warning" cursor displayed when the respective opponent is punching. I would also be interested in separate cursors for the left and right arms, but these are not necessary.

Other Graphics
Of course, a title screen logo would be a nice thing to have. It should be static and in an anime style. It should emphasize the "2" in "Hand2Hand", making it at least 1.5 times as big as the rest of the letters. The rest should be in all caps. All letters should be thickly outlined and give an illusion of a third dimension via shading or similar technique. Size should be something like 800 pixels wide.

It would also be nice to have a good-looking "Fight!" visual which would be displayed before a fight (like Street Fighter). It should be animated, to be displayed for about half a second. Frame rate should be 60 FPS. It should be flashy and in an anime style, with yellows and oranges used for the back. I'm imagining a sort of animated scream speech balloon, but without the tail that connects it to the speaker. Of course, I would be more than willing to see better ideas, but that's what I'm imagining. Size should be something around 400x150, though it would be perfectly acceptable to adjust the aspect ratio to make the text fit better.

To make the game look more visually appealing, I think it should also have a "block" animation which is played whenever an attack is blocked. It should by around 128x128 pixels. It should be mostly white. It would be one of those visuals you see commonly in anime which make it more obvious that a collision has occured. See Nose Hairs of Fury (attack the enemy and loock closely) if you don't understand what I mean.

Also, if someone is interested (for some reason) in creating a better font for menus than the one I'm currently using (found in /data/fonts/PlanetBenson), be my guest.

Other Sounds
A humble selection change and selection choose sound would be nice. I would also be interested in a "Fight!" voice to play at the beginning of each fight (much like Street Fighter, but without the "round X" voices).

Feedback:
Any feedback is welcome and encouraged.
Onpon's Shelf: https://onpon4.github.io

Sponsor:

#2 StauntonLick   Members   -  Reputation: 148

Posted 18 April 2011 - 03:53 PM

Sounds like an interesting project! I'd like to find out more about getting involved on the audio front - take a look at my portfolio over at www.jonnymartyr.com and see what you think. Send me a PM if you'd like to discuss anything at all.

Cheers!

Jonny
Jonny Martyr
Composer & Sound Designer for Games & Film
www.jonnymartyr.com

#3 onpon4   Members   -  Reputation: 288

Posted 12 May 2011 - 02:19 PM

Well, response has been slow on this topic. You can see the only response I've seen above.

I've updated the topic a bit to hopefully be more useful than before. I might as well also mention that I have made another request topic on OpenGameArt forums, found here.
Onpon's Shelf: https://onpon4.github.io

#4 Ryan Mack   Members   -  Reputation: 103

Posted 14 May 2011 - 03:56 PM

This looks like a very interesting project! I make on my phone using an Android app called Uloops so I doubt my music is off the quality you are looking for lol
If you want to hear for yourself then go to http://uloops.net/profile/shamrocker

#5 onpon4   Members   -  Reputation: 288

Posted 15 May 2011 - 07:11 PM

I'd better post this here, since it seems to be a common theme.

So far, at least four people have shown interest in this project, offering to make music or sounds (mostly music). I highly appreciate this, but the truth is, there is very little you can do until I have some graphics, since almost all music and sounds are tied with corresponding graphics (that is, player sprites and backgrounds). Unfortunately, no graphic artists have yet shown interest in the project yet, so for the most part, it's probably best to wait until some graphics artists show interest and make some backgrounds or characters, then make music or sounds (respectively) to fit those graphics.

With that said, there are some things that can be done right now, though they are few:

  • Selection change and selection choose sounds (see the original post)
  • Main menu music and/or character selection music were not originally planned, but they might be a good addition to atmosphere of the game. If you would like to try that, I'd say each of them should be at least 1:00 long. A sound somewhat like Street Fighter would probably fit Hand2Hand nicely. Of course, no SF remixes, I'm just trying to give an idea of what it would sound like. ;)

It is also of course possible to make sounds for a particular character or music for a particular setting, though I don't recommend it, since there's no guarantee that a graphic artist will be interested in making a background for that theme.

Anyways, let's hope some interested graphics artists come soon. :)
Onpon's Shelf: https://onpon4.github.io

#6 onpon4   Members   -  Reputation: 288

Posted 03 June 2011 - 04:44 AM

It goes without saying, I still need graphics. Anything, even small pieces, will be very helpful!
Onpon's Shelf: https://onpon4.github.io

#7 onpon4   Members   -  Reputation: 288

Posted 29 June 2011 - 07:18 PM

Man, it's been so long. I haven't been actively working on Hand2Hand for a while now, since I still haven't seen the slightest interest from any potential graphics artists. I would still like to finish this project, but I need some real graphics. You don't even need to be that amazing; anything above the generic stick-figure or MS-Paint level of game art would be useful. If you are able to create decent character graphics and have even the slightest interest in this project, please let me know.
Onpon's Shelf: https://onpon4.github.io

#8 Mariachi   Members   -  Reputation: 176

Posted 30 June 2011 - 01:25 AM

Man, it's been so long. I haven't been actively working on Hand2Hand for a while now, since I still haven't seen the slightest interest from any potential graphics artists. I would still like to finish this project, but I need some real graphics. You don't even need to be that amazing; anything above the generic stick-figure or MS-Paint level of game art would be useful. If you are able to create decent character graphics and have even the slightest interest in this project, please let me know.


If I may chip in - beat'em up game sprites and animations are pretty much king class.

Posted Image

This is Ryu from SF3, the absolute apex of 2D animation. He's about 120 pixel high.

Even in this relatively simple-looking stance, you can see years of character design experience, a perfect touch for pixel art and a masterly command of animation.
I'm willing to guess that this stance had been drawn as a single pencil sketch, scanned in and converted to pixel art by hand, by someone who knew what they were doing. My estimation as a complete amateur would be that this animation alone easily took up 10 man-hours, if people were working incredibly fast.

You seem to want 400 x 400 sprites, done pixel art, in a fixed style ("anime/manga"). You might be saying that you're not shooting for AAA level, but you don't want ugly either, I guess?

So I'm just saying, this is not a hobby thing, and beat'em ups are probably the worst genre for "casual" work for a 2D graphics artist.

So my suggestions would be:
  • Release the game as a barebones freeware software and try to attract a community, à la Mugen. You'll need an individual twist, though - maybe prizes? Perhaps a larger body of gamers (haw haw) willing to contribute might be the solution for this problem.
  • Do it as a payment option at least for the first sprite in order to get a build running, then attract someone via payment share, or maybe get your game funded.
I'm by no means dissing your project - I'm just trying to offer some explanation as to what certain artists might be thinking regarding this particular project.

my 2D art!

~ Does your game win the Indie Project Bingo? Click to find out! ~


#9 onpon4   Members   -  Reputation: 288

Posted 30 June 2011 - 12:11 PM


Man, it's been so long. I haven't been actively working on Hand2Hand for a while now, since I still haven't seen the slightest interest from any potential graphics artists. I would still like to finish this project, but I need some real graphics. You don't even need to be that amazing; anything above the generic stick-figure or MS-Paint level of game art would be useful. If you are able to create decent character graphics and have even the slightest interest in this project, please let me know.


If I may chip in - beat'em up game sprites and animations are pretty much king class.

Posted Image

This is Ryu from SF3, the absolute apex of 2D animation. He's about 120 pixel high.

Even in this relatively simple-looking stance, you can see years of character design experience, a perfect touch for pixel art and a masterly command of animation.
I'm willing to guess that this stance had been drawn as a single pencil sketch, scanned in and converted to pixel art by hand, by someone who knew what they were doing. My estimation as a complete amateur would be that this animation alone easily took up 10 man-hours, if people were working incredibly fast.

You seem to want 400 x 400 sprites, done pixel art, in a fixed style ("anime/manga"). You might be saying that you're not shooting for AAA level, but you don't want ugly either, I guess?

So I'm just saying, this is not a hobby thing, and beat'em ups are probably the worst genre for "casual" work for a 2D graphics artist.

So my suggestions would be:
  • Release the game as a barebones freeware software and try to attract a community, à la Mugen. You'll need an individual twist, though - maybe prizes? Perhaps a larger body of gamers (haw haw) willing to contribute might be the solution for this problem.
  • Do it as a payment option at least for the first sprite in order to get a build running, then attract someone via payment share, or maybe get your game funded.
I'm by no means dissing your project - I'm just trying to offer some explanation as to what certain artists might be thinking regarding this particular project.


Hm, I wonder if this is a common misconception.

I am not looking for pixel art at all. In fact, I think pixel art would be a terrible idea, because it would take so long and be fruitless anyways, since the game scales graphics using a bilinear filter if they're too small. I think it's pretty much universally accepted that this removes the quality from pixel art, as does scaling in general (except for square, integer-multiples). I actually think that easier methods than pixel art might also be better, such as vector or 3D graphics converted to high-resolution raster graphics. In fact, I have a mind that a future version of this game would actually support 3D graphics or at least vector graphics, but I chose plain raster graphics because it allows the most flexibility, for now (and because I don't have any experience with OpenGL right now)

I should also mention why I recommend at least 400x400: character graphics take up the entire screen, not just a portion. The default screen size is 800x400, so 400x400 graphics makes sense. Note, however, that even the body, the largest part, would only likely take up 50-75% of the area, with the rest being transparent, and the arms would take up even less space.

I am not looking for a fixed style. I only specify "anime/manga" to help give a perspective of how things should look, approximately. If I specified no style, it would be unclear whether I want cartoony, realistic, pixel-art, etc.

Yes, I could in theory pay someone or something, but I have very few resources right now, and it doesn't look like that's going to change in the near future. More importantly, I honestly don't think it would make much of a positive difference anyways. Just look at my website; no one even goes there. Statistically, about 15 visitors come a day, which is probably just stray traffic. Senso, my last PC game project, attracted exactly no attention at all, and Space Invaders for TI, which I put up specifically in the hopes that it would attract attention, also attracted no attention. In the same sense, I doubt an alpha version of Hand2Hand would actually help it grow; it would probably just fall flat in the same way that Senso did, and I would be short hundreds of dollars.

Anyways, I hope I cleared up those misconceptions. Just to reiterate:
  • I am NOT looking for pixel art. I think pixel art would simply be a terrible waste of time. A better idea would be to convert either vector graphics or 3D graphics to raster graphics.
  • The specification of "anime/manga" style is ONLY A GUIDE. It's there in case you are unsure of what style you should draw in. I would be perfectly fine with different styles of art. For example, if you wanted to do a parody of a real-life person, it would be perfectly fine (and in fact encouraged) to base the graphics off of real-life images of the person.
  • Again, the size specification of 400x400 is only a guide, based on the default window size, which is 800x400. Any size is fine as long as it's square; just keep in mind that if it's too small, it will be scaled with a bilinear filter.

Onpon's Shelf: https://onpon4.github.io




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