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Creating Pixel Art

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Hello, can anyone guide me in the right direction for creating pixel art in the style of these 3 examples?

 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1054244612/c-wars-roguelike-pixel-art-pc-game

 

http://media.tumblr.com/0227ef17327e317a89829d4b4b52c629/tumblr_inline_mm014sUgzP1qz4rgp.jpg

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TGP0_qZjA0

 

Any help would be appreciated.

Edited by aanthonyz1

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There are a few threads with this information. In the future, to better help you find the info, just click the search box and type what you are looking for.

 

Here is what you will find when you do that:

http://www.gamedev.net/index.php?s=bf22574d944810e9e98ce2f987a38aef&app=googlecse#gsc.tab=0&gsc.q=pixel%20art%20tutorials

 

Good luck and keep us posted on what you learn!

Edited by riuthamus

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Tell us about yourself aanthonyz1, what experience do you have with pixel art and graphics in general?

That Chasm game uses a very harmonious palette, analogous colours. It gives me the feeling of something classic and mature, tending to realism.
The colours for that C-Wars game, mostly for the characters, seem more stylised\cartoonish, which is understandable given its "anime" context.

The strongest difference between those games is the character art.
For Chasm every character seems unique, having a different model (the underlying structure). This contributes to a greater variety of characters.
For C-Wars however, the characters seem very "templated" in that they are all derived from a generic model. This is more easily seen in the following image rather than in the characters themselves:

141013382251618_8126229546.jpg

How many of their characters could we fit in that dark silhouette in the top right corner? To me that seems like the template that the artist is using. With different hairstyles, most of their characters are using that structure.
This doesn't make it look bad, it's just the way that they chose to have their characters made.

Regardless of the art direction that you choose, you should first be able to draw your characters traditionally (large size, pencil and paper) if you want those results, being able to convey volume, posing and expression.
The "pixel art" part would come later, as a sort of low resolution, reduced version based on your drawings.
If you can't draw appealing characters on paper at normal sizes, it's unlikely that you will get satisfactory results when plotting pixel art either.

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My opinion here.  Pixel art is hard to do for the average person.  Animation is very hard to do for the average person.  What I do is use an old version of Anime Studio Debut which I got for about 10 dollars.  I import it into Gimp, and then scale it way down with interpolation turned off.  Then I scale it back up and it ends up being pixelated.  Same for backgrounds, etc, but you can do those in Gimp right away or whatever program you wish.

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I think that, before you can do appropriate pixel art, you need to do more formal art.

People get the wrong idea that pixel art is low-resolution cheap visual. It may be, but it doesn't achieve "great results".

 

Good pixel art revolves around the concept of using the player's mind to "fill-in the blanks".

Basically, you're choosing your pixel in such a way as to hint at what is being drawn without actually drawing it. 

For example, if you want to give the player a feel that a skeleton's chest is comprised of 6 ribs on each side, you won't necessarily draw all 6 as standalone horizontal lines. You won't even draw all 6 probably.

 

So the more experience you have with conventional art, the better it helps when coming to pixel art. You have a better of feel of what needs to be there. The hard part still remains though: how can one pixel be both an eye and skin for example?

 

The examples you've showcased all have a fairly drastic japanese treatment (even though Chasm is developed locally). If you take some time to consider the hero in Chasm for example, you'll notice that the eyes are WAY too high to make sense (and use two different hues of blue). Eyes tend to be made this way (two white-ish pixels on the outside, and two different-colored pixels to represent the actual iris, one being darker to hint at the eye's focal point without ever being black).

This is reminiscent of Manga, where eyes are very large.

 

I recommend having a look at manga and define what parts are exaggerated. Then, make a regular skeleton based on normal proportions, and adjust with Manga's considerations (larger eyes, etc.)

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Good pixel art is actually a step up from regular painting, same rules apply, but it adds new ones and introduces restrictions. If you don't fancy yourself a painter, you're best off outsourcing or grabbing a pixel art pack. Or both smile.png

 

With that being said, if you really want to try, here's a rundown of a lot of common mistakes, and how to avoid them:

 

http://androidarts.com/pixtut/pixelart.htm

Edited by Ravenmore

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