Literature review

For this task we have to find relevant sources that we could use for our research. This is useful because when we come to research we will have a list of sources we could use. To start I will be making a list of topics relevant to my project and gather sources for them.

Anatomy, pose and gesture

https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-drawing-characters-consistently–cms-22112 – This article explains everything to make a character unique, using features, pose and dress sense.

Drawing basics and video game art (Book) – (Solarski, 2012) – Has a whole bunch of different information into different aspects of character design.

https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/quick-tip-the-line-of-action-make-your-character-poses-more-dynamic–vector-5554 – More in-depth information into pose.

http://www.innerbody.com/image/musfov.html – This has all the information into human anatomy that I will need.

https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-learning-to-see-and-draw-energy–vector-17027 – Learning to see and capture the energy of a body.

https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-advanced-body-proportions–vector-19869 – An advancement into human proportions.

https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/human-anatomy-fundamentals-basics-of-the-face–cms-20417 – Things to keep in mind, when doing the proportions of a face.

­Character design

Drawing basics and video game art (Book) – (Solarski, 2012) – Has a step-by-step tutorial on learning character design.

https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-drawing-characters-consistently–cms-22112 – This article also helps me with games design overall, as It has key information on every aspect of character design.

http://pixar-animation.weebly.com/character-design.html – Has some great tips for character design, including key features to include when making a character.

https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/10-top-tips-for-creating-unique-character-designs–cms-25966 – Great tips for creating a unique character.

https://www.digitaltutors.com/tutorial/1052-Beginners-Guide-to-Concept-Sketching – A beginners guide to sketching, when creating a character.

https://youtu.be/u3g6OANZyxM?t=2m00s – Goes through all the steps on creating a character, including multiple sketches, putting them into to photoshop and deciding what type of character it’s going to be.

https://www.retrosupply.co/blogs/retrosupply-blog/retro-vintage-character-design-tutorials – Many different tutorials, on how to create different type of characters.

Creating sprites

https://blog.spoongraphics.co.uk/tutorials/how-to-create-an-8-bit-pixel-character-in-illustrator – An easy to follow guide on how to create an 8-bit character in illustrator.

https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/how-to-create-an-animated-pixel-art-sprite-in-adobe-photoshop–cms-20428 – A guide on making an animated character in photoshop.

https://www.raywenderlich.com/14865/introduction-to-pixel-art-for-games – Another tutorial on making a sprite, but this time in Photoshop. They go over what makes a sprite good, eye-appealing, and nostalgic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GECdvBzkaCs&t=187s –  A more in-depth way of making a sprite in Photoshop.

https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/learn-how-to-draw-hand-crafted-pixel-art-in-photoshop–psd-5284 – This is very useful for when I’m trying to create any objects or assets for my game.

Formal elements: tone, colour, shape, line, texture, form, and lighting

https://graphicmama.com/blog/conveying-characters-personality/ – Explains how different shapes can reflect on a character’s personality.

https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/02/color-theory-for-designer-part-3-creating-your-own-color-palettes/ – Using colour theory for your character.

Semiology

Character design in fighting games

http://conceptartworld.com/news/mortal-kombat-x-concept-art-by-marco-nelor/ – A lot of the concept art from Mortal Kombat, which I can use for inspiration.

http://fightingstreet.com/folders/artworkfolder/artworkpages/sf_art_pages/sfiv_art_pages/sfiv_pc_concept_art/sfiv_pc_concept_art.html – More concept but from street fighter, which has a slightly different art style to Mortal Kombat.

http://www.wwe.com/classics/superstar-sketches-round-2-photos – Very useful is I chose to do a human character.

 

Bibliography

Bilyana, 2016. How to Convey Character’s Personality Through Shape, Variance and Size. [Online]
Available at: https://graphicmama.com/blog/conveying-characters-personality/
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Chapman, C., 2010. Color Theory For Designers: Creating Your Own Color Palettes. [Online]
Available at: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/02/color-theory-for-designer-part-3-creating-your-own-color-palettes/
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Gandia, P., 2014. Tutorial – Character Design – Concept Art. [Online]
Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3g6OANZyxM&feature=youtu.be&t=2m00s
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Graphics, S., 2013. How To Create an 8-Bit Pixel Character in Illustrator. [Online]
Available at: https://blog.spoongraphics.co.uk/tutorials/how-to-create-an-8-bit-pixel-character-in-illustrator
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Kotaki, G., 2012. Introduction to Pixel Art for Games. [Online]
Available at: https://www.raywenderlich.com/14865/introduction-to-pixel-art-for-games
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Medlej, J., 2013. Human Anatomy Fundamentals: Advanced Body Proportions. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-advanced-body-proportions–vector-19869
[Accessed 7 5 2017].

Medlej, J., 2013. Human Anatomy Fundamentals: Learning to See and Draw Energy. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-learning-to-see-and-draw-energy–vector-17027
[Accessed 7 5 2017].

Medlej, J., 2014. Human Anatomy Fundamentals: Basics of The Face. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/human-anatomy-fundamentals-basics-of-the-face–cms-20417
[Accessed 7 5 2017].

Medlej, J., 2014. Human Anatomy Fundamentals: Drawing Characters Consistently. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/human-anatomy-fundamentals-drawing-characters-consistently–cms-22112
[Accessed 5 5 2017].

Nelor, A. M., 2016. Exclusive ‘Mortal Kombat X’ Concept Art by Marco Nelor. [Online]
Available at: http://conceptartworld.com/news/mortal-kombat-x-concept-art-by-marco-nelor/
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Nieves, M., 2016. 10 Top Tips for Creating Unique Character Designs. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/10-top-tips-for-creating-unique-character-designs–cms-25966
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Polikanin, G., 2014. How to Create an Animated Pixel Art Sprite in Adobe Photoshop. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/how-to-create-an-animated-pixel-art-sprite-in-adobe-photoshop–cms-20428
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Russell, E., 2013. Beginner’s Guide to Concept Sketching. [Online]
Available at: https://www.digitaltutors.com/tutorial/1052-Beginners-Guide-to-Concept-Sketching
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Sadasivam, K. M., 2012. Quick Tip: The Line of Action, Make Your Character Poses More Dynamic!. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/tutorials/quick-tip-the-line-of-action-make-your-character-poses-more-dynamic–vector-5554
[Accessed 7 5 2017].

Sagar, J., 2017. 40 Inspiring Retro Character Design Tutorials. [Online]
Available at: https://www.retrosupply.co/blogs/retrosupply-blog/retro-vintage-character-design-tutorials
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Solarski, C., 2012. Drawing basics and video game art. 1st ed. New York: Watson – Guptill Publications .

Tate, R., 2009. Learn How to Draw Hand-crafted Pixel Art in Photoshop. [Online]
Available at: https://design.tutsplus.com/articles/learn-how-to-draw-hand-crafted-pixel-art-in-photoshop–psd-5284
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

UNKNOWN, 2008. Character Design. [Online]
Available at: http://pixar-animation.weebly.com/character-design.html
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

UNKNOWN, 2009. Anatomy. [Online]
Available at: http://www.innerbody.com/image/musfov.html
[Accessed 7 5 2017].

UNKNOWN, 2009. Street Fighter IV concept art (from PC version of Street Fighter 4). [Online]
Available at: http://fightingstreet.com/folders/artworkfolder/artworkpages/sf_art_pages/sfiv_art_pages/sfiv_pc_concept_art/sfiv_pc_concept_art.html
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

UNKNOWN, 2014. Never-before-seen Superstar sketches from the WWE Vault, round 2: photos. [Online]
Available at: http://www.wwe.com/classics/superstar-sketches-round-2-photos#fid-26186594
[Accessed 5 8 2017].

Zarting, 2013. Basic Pixel Art Tutorial: Zarting Arting. [Online]
Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GECdvBzkaCs&t=187s
[Accessed 8 5 2017].

Task 2

Define your project and background

The end result of my project is to have developed a understanding of 2D sprites. I will also be making a 2D sprite for a game called Psychic Force. The reason I wanted to do this is because of the interest I have in 2D pixel and fighting games. I find that 2D art has infinite possibilities.

Produce a short review of what you know about your subject (based on your knowledge, previous work and literature review)

Before joining this course, I had no knowledge of 2D pixel art, but after doing trimester two I have really developed a interest in the subject. After trimester two I really felt like I learnt a lot of information; such as shading, creating a basic sprite, creating assets and environments.

Identify key areas where you need to develop your knowledge

I feel that some key areas I need to improve on are shading, improved colour palettes and working in a larger resolution. These are key things for what I want to do for my project, as I’m making a sprite and I will need to be able to use a good colour palette to reflect on what type of character it is.

Primary Research

Survey ( https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HLZ9LN3 )

For part of my primary research I decided to create a survey to gather peoples opinion on various questions, to do with pixel art and fighting games.

The results from my survey showed that 100% of the people who responded play fighting games, and they all play different fighting games, ranging from streets of rage to mortal kombat.

Four out of seven responses said that they prefer villains over heroes, to me this shows that villains are becoming increasingly popular over heroes. Seeing this research gave me confidence in my choice to make my character a villain.

These were the answers I got regarding the question ” What visual elements do you think make a memorable character?”, I got a range of answers:

-Contrasting colours (black/red etc), thematic, personality reflection

-Distinctive features, Colour scheme, Detail

-They need to look cute, cool, or sexy.

-Either someone who stands out or someone who has really defining features like a unique hairstyle or body type or facial feature or possibly someone you don’t really expect to be a good character by apperance but them they end up having an interesting personality or unique power.

-A unique design

-Good colours, shapes and their poses.

-Fluid movement

All these answers give me a whole range of opinions on what people like

Primary Research

Survey ( https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HLZ9LN3 )

For part of my primary research I decided to create a survey to gather peoples opinion on various questions, to do with pixel art and fighting games.

The results from my survey showed that 100% of the people who responded play fighting games, and they all play different fighting games, ranging from streets of rage to mortal kombat.

Four out of seven responses said that they prefer villains over heroes, to me this shows that villains are becoming increasingly popular over heroes. Seeing this research gave me confidence in my choice to make my character a villain.

These were the answers I got regarding the question ” What visual elements do you think make a memorable character?”, I got a range of answers:

-Contrasting colours (black/red etc), thematic, personality reflection

-Distinctive features, Colour scheme, Detail

-They need to look cute, cool, or sexy.

-Either someone who stands out or someone who has really defining features like a unique hairstyle or body type or facial feature or possibly someone you don’t really expect to be a good character by apperance but them they end up having an interesting personality or unique power.

-A unique design

-Good colours, shapes and their poses.

-Fluid movement

All these answers give me a whole range of opinions on what people like in a character. I will use this to help me form the character I’m creating. One thing that is common among all of these answers is that most of them prefer a unique design, with a good colour scheme. After seeing this I decided to out and try to capture some colour palettes using Adobe Capture.

 

All colours.PNG

I’m going to design a survey asking people which of these colour schemes suit a villain best. Before I make a question, I need to think about which type of villain I’m going to make. I’ve decided to base my villain off someone who has discovered an ancient power, maybe from a ring or has read an evil book of some sort. Villains like this are Red skull, Ronan from guardians of the galaxy, Juggernaut, Akuma, Shinnok, Shang Tsung, The mummy, Vandal Savage, Mandarin, Ra’s al ghul, Thanos and Black Adam.

Out of all of these villains, something they all have in common, is that some or all of their power comes from an ancient artifact that was discovered, or some sort of book granting them power. I am going to choose three of these villains to compare their colours, to see what is the main similarities in the

  1. What colours do you associate with a villain most?
  2. What colours do you associate with a hero most?
  3. How villainous would you rate these colours out 5? (1 being hero, 5 being supervillain)
  4. Which of these colours would suit a villain most?

 

Review two articles, analyse the evolution of Link and Mario, Compare two pixel artists and compare two pixel art games.

http://yachtclubgames.com/2017/03/designing-body-swap/ – This article goes into detail of the importance of genders in game. They go over each problem they encountered when creating each character in the opposite gender. For instance; Black Knight, instead of using the body to portray gender they used armour to their advantage.

From this I learned that gender is always important when creating a character, especially how you show it.

http://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/DavidDAngelo/20140625/219383/Breaking_the_NES_for_Shovel_Knight.php – This article explains how the developers of Shovel Knight used to the NES restrictions, to make their game. They explain each restriction of the NES like the graphics, sound and the memory limitations. They created some of their characters using the same colour palette that was on the NES.

I believe the developers done this to really maximize their chances of creating that nostalgic effect when making Shovel Knight.

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/255187/Beneath_the_pixels_The_art_direction_of_Super_Time_Force.php – This article goes over most of the things that went on during the development. The article goes over most of the things that went on during the development, including how super time force started, which was by doing a three-day game jam, which consisted of three teammates; one in charge of art, one in charge of animation and one in charge of programming. Once the game in the three-day game jam was over they decided to call it Super Time Squad. After they realised the success of Super Time Squad, they then worked on created a full version of the game which would then be Super Time Force.

Analyze the evolution of style, shape and colour for Link and Mario.

Link pixel.png

 

Mario Pixel.jpg

Ever since The legend of Zelda became a game, it has been nothing but a success. But how did it start? The first Legend of Zelda game came out in 1986 on the Nintendo Entertainment System, since it came out in 1986 that means there would have been a lot of technical limitations, such as colour, memory and sound.

 

Mario, being a very old video-game character, was first seen in Donkey Kong (1981) and after he gained a lot of popularity he got his first game in 1985 (Super Mario Bros), which was a huge success. Super Mario Bros first came out on the Nintendo Entertainment System which gave it the same limitations as The legend of Zelda.

Link2.png

Mario 2.jpg Since both characters started on the Nintendo Entertainment System, there were loads of limitations, one of them being Style. Since 3D wasn’t available on the Nintendo Entertainment System they both had to stick to 2D art and pixel art.

Shapes for both characters were rather difficult since they were both done in pixel art, and to show shape through pixel art can be difficult especially because they were both done in 16×16 resolution. Mario still has a rather roundish torso to reflect on a friendly character.

Colour was still extremely limited due to the Nintendo Entertainment System only having 64 available colours, but colours can have a lot of impact on reflecting on a character’s personality.

Link.png

Mario.png If we compared the colours and features from their original characters to their current one, some things have changed but they have kept some key features. Link has kept his main colour scheme but added some extra colours due to the advancement in technology. His brown boots remained, brown belt and the shield has been given more detail.

Mario has one noticeable change on his costume, and that is his overalls are now

blue instead of red but the reason his overalls are red in Super Mario Bros instead of blue, according to artist Shigeru Miyamoto it was to accommodate
the background in the first Super Mario Bros game.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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