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Diablo I item layering

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I know this is kinda of game specific, but does anyone know the technique that diablo I used for displaying different item slots on the viewable avatar? I'm pretty sure Diablo I was all 2d based sprites, so did they render out each item piece to mimic the base model animations? so if the base model animation had 6 frames of right movement, each chest piece had 6 frames of right movement to sync up, and they just overlaid the chest piece onto the base model. This seems like an art asset nightmare, and not to mention a video ram problem. Anyone got any insight on this? -Thanks

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Diablo1 had no layering of items on the players character at all.
Each of the 90 Weapon/Armor/Class combinations you see in the game has been individually rendered, there's no layering of any kind on the character sprite.

This solves the problems you mention at once, but uses way more space on the CD and there aren't that many variants for character sprites.


But there are games that use the method you describe.
The first was Ultima Online. If you've got the game (you can download the client for free on the uo.com site), install it and download the tool InsideUO to view all the sprites seperately.

And Diablo2 used the same method. There are now much more combinations than in Diablo1, but not as many as in Ultima Online. Plus you can't view the graphics seperately out of the game as easily as in UO (haven't checked on the progress...at least it wasn't possible 5 years ago).

A typical character in UO has about 10-12 equipment sprites on the character sprite (hair, beard, head, neck, chest, legs, feet, hands, l.hand item, r.hand item, cape, mount) with 8 directions (half of them mirrored) and 4 different movement tapes (walking, running, mounted+walking, mounted+running).

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