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UltimateWalrus

Looking for a good book on 2D pixel art/animation

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UltimateWalrus    229
I'm just wondering if anyone knows of a good book that will teach me a way of making acceptable pixel art and animation for my games. I have Photoshop on my computer, as well as demo versions of software like Pro Motion and Paint Shop, but I have no clue how to make decent-looking pixel art using these programs --- and the standard tutorials for these programs don't help. I think that it would be helpful if I could go through a book that would teach me how to use a specific sofware package to make pixel art. Ideally, this book would be specific to game pixel art and animation, and would touch on the creative side as well as teaching me the technical details. Has anyone seen anything like this?

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caseyd    276
Designing Arcade Computer Game Graphics EDIT: Just found that this book has been released by Ari Feldman online for free. Get it here.

It is written by Ari Feldman, the guy who created the spritelib set. It's an older book but most of what it contains is still applicable. The above link to half.com has a few copies for under $20.

I am not sure of any others out there. There are a decent amount of tutorials online that can get you started in the right direction.

My suggestion though is if you are just starting, which it sounds like you are, do a search for tilesets from old 8 or 16 bit console games, especially those for the Super Nintendo. Take a look at how they do things and try and emulate it ( not just copy ). NES games might be a little easier to start with as the grid is usually a lot more noticeable (i.e. you can see the breakdown of the tiles a lot easier). Try starting with just MS Paint. It's not the best tool around and you will definitely want something better but just remember it's only a tool. I would recommend checking out the GIMP for a really good paintshop/photoshop replacement.

Good luck,
Casey

(ps. I am looking for a pixel artist for a few java games I am working on. There is no reimbursement other than to see your art in a complete game, hence I am looking for a beginning artist or someone who just wants to have fun. Full credit will be given.)

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UltimateWalrus    229
Thank you very much. I'm downloading the online version right now.

Actually, I've done pixel art and animation before. I started making games in 3rd grade using a really simple program called "Klik & Play," and this (along with its successor, Multimedia Fusion) had a built-in drawing/animating system, which was pretty much a small step above MS paint. It was certainly functional, but I don't know if anything I made with it could have the word "quality" applied to it.

That's a good idea though --- looking at old tilesets and trying to emulate them. Thanks for the advice!

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