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Power Master's Power Master Thread

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8_bit_cora_by_powermaster64-da8in1q.png

Well, I feel this was an afternoon well spent. Aside from the yellow on the houses (which the pallet didn't give me), I only used the colors from the NES pallet Deku gave out. Brightly colored, but I like it!

Noise/Dither was something I was a bit wary about at first, but I see how it's used now.

I haven't done the inside of the houses or the characters yet. But what do you think of the town so far?

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8_bit_cora_by_powermaster64-da8in1q.png

Well, I feel this was an afternoon well spent. Aside from the yellow on the houses (which the pallet didn't give me), I only used the colors from the NES pallet Deku gave out. Brightly colored, but I like it!

Noise/Dither was something I was a bit wary about at first, but I see how it's used now.

I haven't done the inside of the houses or the characters yet. But what do you think of the town so far?

The green is a bit hard on the eyes. Try to go with something less neon. I think a palette that would look really well are the colours used for Earthbound.

http://nintendowire.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/original.jpg

Edited by carefreejules

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the palette is looking a lot more cohesive, especially with the more toned down outlines. As mentioned above, the grass is currently quite bright, so I would use one of the more toned down hues on the palette (either the paler or darker ones).

I would also try to break up the grass tiles with some more detail, as it is rather flat at the moment. I can see some texture already so I'm sure you had that idea too, but don't be afraid to exaggerate those elements! Since you're working in an 8-bit style, don't be afraid to go for high-contrast, exaggerated details. As you have limited colours and tones to work with, a lot of your work will be about fooling people into thinking things are a lot more detailed than they are.

53f03c0c79.png

I kinda did this fast but it's kinda this general idea? Using effects like stippling/ dithering will help you create extra tones/ highlights in your work without needing to add additional colours.

EDIT:

ce5f3aa8bd.png
also I think you were going in the right direction re: simplification when it comes to the battle sprites, however when you're working in a super simplified style like this you have to make sure all your decisions are purposeful. I made a little mock-up here that shows some examples of what I mean because I'm a visual person, but here you go.

- I notice you tend to make the neck area a bit thicker, which is alright but gives it a bit of a disproportionately top-heavy look. slimming it down will help it look more anatomically cohesive. Likewise, anatomical principles apply just as much to simple styles as they do to more complex ones, try building your "skeleton" like shown to make sure you account for the hips/ shoulders, equal length in limbs, etc.

- Don't forget the line of action! In a battle pose like this one, you want it too be dynamic and purposeful looking. (Those little arrows just show where the curves of the figure go, but in general making sure there's a few dynamic curves can make it look less static!)
- Likewise, just gave the clothing a bit more detail/ folding because these little details will sell that it's still on a figure.

- He looked a little relaxed for a fight so I just added a little bit of a more determined expression on his li'l face.

Edited by ✿Deku✿

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the palette is looking a lot more cohesive, especially with the more toned down outlines. As mentioned above, the grass is currently quite bright, so I would use one of the more toned down hues on the palette (either the paler or darker ones).

I would also try to break up the grass tiles with some more detail, as it is rather flat at the moment. I can see some texture already so I'm sure you had that idea too, but don't be afraid to exaggerate those elements! Since you're working in an 8-bit style, don't be afraid to go for high-contrast, exaggerated details. As you have limited colours and tones to work with, a lot of your work will be about fooling people into thinking things are a lot more detailed than they are.

53f03c0c79.png

I kinda did this fast but it's kinda this general idea? Using effects like stippling/ dithering will help you create extra tones/ highlights in your work without needing to add additional colours.

I have fixed the grass. It's about the same color as the pic you've posted.

The "detail" you see is the dithering effect (or the flowers). I could add some more pixels to make it look like waving grass, sure.

EDIT:

ce5f3aa8bd.png

also I think you were going in the right direction re: simplification when it comes to the battle sprites, however when you're working in a super simplified style like this you have to make sure all your decisions are purposeful. I made a little mock-up here that shows some examples of what I mean because I'm a visual person, but here you go.

- I notice you tend to make the neck area a bit thicker, which is alright but gives it a bit of a disproportionately top-heavy look. slimming it down will help it look more anatomically cohesive. Likewise, anatomical principles apply just as much to simple styles as they do to more complex ones, try building your "skeleton" like shown to make sure you account for the hips/ shoulders, equal length in limbs, etc.

- Don't forget the line of action! In a battle pose like this one, you want it too be dynamic and purposeful looking. (Those little arrows just show where the curves of the figure go, but in general making sure there's a few dynamic curves can make it look less static!)

- Likewise, just gave the clothing a bit more detail/ folding because these little details will sell that it's still on a figure.

- He looked a little relaxed for a fight so I just added a little bit of a more determined expression on his li'l face.

Heh, Kyle looks kinda scared there, tbh. :)

FYI, I'm not going for a realistic look, and that's not just because I can't. I tend to keep things simple.

I've tried working with skeletons before, but that just threw my art off even more.

I know my poses seem a bit stiff, but it may take me a little while to get things right here.

I'm unsure about the folds of the clothing. I never really know where to put them exactly, even if I look at my own clothing. Though, looking at your work there, I can see a few things.

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I'm unsure about the folds of the clothing. I never really know where to put them exactly, even if I look at my own clothing. Though, looking at your work there, I can see a few things.

Folds on clothing commonly occur where there is tension in the pose. Notice how the folds on the sleeve of the left arm, fold towards the tension or folded part of the arm - that's one of the things to look out for. Wherever there is tension, the folds will follow in that direction. Similar to how the back arches a bit - see how the fold lines are going towards it?

Folds on clothing can be difficult to get down, but the best starting point is to see if there's any point of tension in the pose. Everything else, you would have to think about the force of gravity and how it will naturally pull the clothing.

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May I suggest instead of using traditional art, trying to sprite the portraits? the handdrawn stuff kind of clashes.

So, something like this?

KeZvMLi.png

I only edited the blank template/basis I use for now to see how well I do. Just traced over the original and colored in using the NES pallet. While I think it looks good (even with the neon shirt), I prefer using the hand drawn portraits. Though I also think it might work best if I hand draw them, scan them, then trace them like here.

Thoughts?

EDIT: I didn't do the dithering on it yet, as I wanted to do that once the facial features were added so those are taken into account.

Folds on clothing commonly occur where there is tension in the pose. Notice how the folds on the sleeve of the left arm, fold towards the tension or folded part of the arm - that's one of the things to look out for. Wherever there is tension, the folds will follow in that direction. Similar to how the back arches a bit - see how the fold lines are going towards it?

Folds on clothing can be difficult to get down, but the best starting point is to see if there's any point of tension in the pose. Everything else, you would have to think about the force of gravity and how it will naturally pull the clothing.

Tension, huh... Alright, I'll keep working on that. :)

Edited by Power Master

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Possible ideas could include:

  • Skills
  • Weapons
  • Spells
  • Items
  • Characters
  • Dungeons
  • Quests
  • Enemies
  • An idea you've had for a game, but didn't know how to implement yourself.

Feel free to hit me with as much as you want. As long as I can get it to work with the program and I deem it valid, it'll work.

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Well, you're using RPG Maker right? I use RPG Maker MV and there's a ton of pre-made skills and characters that you should no doubt be inspired by. Unless you got the free version of RPG Maker in which there probably isn't many pre-made stuff there for you to work with right?

There's also pre-made maps and stuff that you can load for inspiration if you're having trouble thinking of where to start mapping.

Here are some of the maps I put together using RPG Maker MV for my own fan game that I hope you can somewhat be inspired by :>

Map001_zps7ctvqxcj.png

Map006_zpsm7utu8kl.png

Map015_zpslzhq1jbj.png

Map011_zpsy1svaubv.png

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Whoa, those look awesome! I don't have the full version of MV (used the free version for a bit), but I have full access to VX Ace. There are certainly a lot of maps and skills to use, but I was wondering if anyone had any ideas of their own they wanted to see.

For example, a character from your game could cross over into mine and vice versa? *not-so-subtle hinting*

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Whoa, those look awesome! I don't have the full version of MV (used the free version for a bit), but I have full access to VX Ace. There are certainly a lot of maps and skills to use, but I was wondering if anyone had any ideas of their own they wanted to see.

For example, a character from your game could cross over into mine and vice versa? *not-so-subtle hinting*

Attack and skills are definitely hard to think of from scratch. I have a bit more leeway because the fan game I'm making already has most of the attack names made up. It always helps to think about what class your characters are in and make skill names based on that. There's also no shame in getting inspiration from other attack names. Like, if one of your characters attacks with their fists and feet, your attack names can follow along the lines of "Flaming Fist" or "Whirlwind Kick". The great thing is that you can be as cheesy as you want hahaha!

I'm not that far in development to where I can include cameos XD I'm still writing out the story and making maps of the settings I've written about so far.

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DID I HEAR SKILL IDEAS.

Okay okay, first above all, we need a magical system. Will it have elements, use MP, any lore associated with it or symbolism? Rock-Paper-Scissor or more Final Fantasy-ish? Personally I like the idea of many independent elements and every character focusing around one or two elements with maybe some kind of branching tree so they could fill different roles?

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I'm still working out on how I want the system to work (even considering remaking it entirely), but yes, there is a Magical system and MP, called Energy here, is included. Fire, Water, Light, Lightning, Stone, Air, Dark, the usual stuff.

I'm trying to see if, instead of a health bar, I can get a Health Point system to work. Something along the lines of Super Mario 64, where you have a set amount of health (could increase over time, idk) and see if I can make it work in an RPG setting. Trying to find a script for that, with someone even saying they'd make one for me.

every character focusing around one or two elements with maybe some kind of branching tree so they could fill different roles?

Not sure about the branching tree of skills, but every character will have their own set of them.

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I'm still working out on how I want the system to work (even considering remaking it entirely), but yes, there is a Magical system and MP, called Energy here, is included. Fire, Water, Light, Lightning, Stone, Air, Dark, the usual stuff.

I'm trying to see if, instead of a health bar, I can get a Health Point system to work. Something along the lines of Super Mario 64, where you have a set amount of health (could increase over time, idk) and see if I can make it work in an RPG setting. Trying to find a script for that, with someone even saying they'd make one for me.

Not sure about the branching tree of skills, but every character will have their own set of them.

Maybe not so much branching skills but you could do branching classes. I know for RPG Maker MV, Yanfly made a script for that so you can check if they made a script like that for VX Ace.

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I don't have much of a need for classes, but there is a bonus in the game where you can switch players around, effectively giving you multiple versions of the same story, but with a different character. For example, you can play Kyle's story as Merlina or Marvin. The first two games were not built with a class system in mind, but it may work in the third one...

Also, I'm posting this again because I haven't gotten a word on it:

KeZvMLi.png

Would this work better than the hand-drawn sprites? It'd be better colored (I can lower the neon) and I can use the hand-drawn stuff for just the battlers instead.

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No one's said anything because it's not very good. Honestly, you should stop clinging hard to your personal style and try to learn some better anatomy skills for drawing, because it'll help the shape look a lot better. Right now, the jaw is a giant triangle, and I can't see flat paint.net colors working well for it.

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I was taught how to draw this way through Mark Crilley's "Mastering Manga" art book, among others. If you don't like it, blame him, but I like how this style looks and I can't exactly turn into a better artist over night. This is how I draw.

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I have the same book, and trust me, it's much better than what you're displaying here lmao. Don't blame the guidebook because you're having issues with creating a good artstyle.

As well, no one expects you to become a good artist overnight. But if you care about this so much, you'll stop putting up roadblocks and look for other sources of learning how to draw than Mark Crilly, and develop a real style

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yeah but mark crilley learned how to do the basics before trying to use a manga style. He took time to do studies and learn anatomy (if you look up his more classical works you can see that he did a lot of the same kind of studies we've been suggesting). I understand that you aesthetically enjoy what you're doing right now but it might be because you haven't stepped back and looked at it from an outsider's perspective. Right now, from that perspective, it's still very amateurish and lacks a unifying style. Most of the elements look less like stylistic choices and more like you don't know how to draw them properly.

The key to stylising things and developing an art style is to learn how things work and then make educated choices in how to tweak those things. You need to know how to warp reality AND do it consistently in order for things to look "right".

we've been trying to help you this whole time but you keep deflecting it or making excuses everytime anyone says anything (including the crit YOU asked me for my good man).

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...Sorry, guys. I'm not trying to sound rude here...

I've gotten a lot of praise for my art, but that's probably because it's much better than what I've done a few years ago. I will say, however, that, while they feel like my characters, the art doesn't feel like mine. I've been using the same measures for every character for a while now, and I guess it's time to develop some new ones. I know it looks "amateurish", but that's probably because I'm not the best artist, but I've also had a lot of fun with this style...

I'll look back over what everyone said and try to develop my own style. I'll post what I can come up with at a latter date.

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Is this praise coming from friends? Deviant art? Facebook? You have to be able to take praise with a grain of salt and figure out when someone's being nice or they're legitimately impressed with your work.

Edited by Melissa

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Like I said, people only offer critique because they believe you have the potential to evolve as an artist. I feel like you would benefit greatly just from practicing and doing studies. Observe how things work and try to build those basics before you work on stylising things. As one of those people who went for the how to draw anime books first and had to unlearn all those bad habits, I will tell you it won't be easy and you might get your ass kicked a few times along the way.

I personally found a lot of use out of just posing drawing mannequins, looking up a clothing catalogue and just drawing a figure in whatever pose and outfit I pulled up out of that. It's silly but it helps learn things like handling poses, fabric weight/ texture, anatomy, building proper skeletons for drawings, etc. You don't really need to necessarily master realism, but just doing little observational studies like that can go a long way.

(Honestly using the free program Design Doll is a godsend because it's basically a posable digital mannequin you can modify the proportions of easily. It's not the best for learning realistic anatomy but it could offer you that midpoint between realism and a more manga/ anime inspired style).

also like melissa said, a lot of people might not be willing to be honest with you because of the fear of hurting your feelings/ bruising your ego. I found out the hard way that sometimes the only way to really improve is to listen to the blunt critique of those you aren't necessarily friends with as they're more likely to give it to you straight so to speak. :P

Edited by ✿Deku✿

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If I may add to the wonderful critique and advice the others have said, you should also consider drawing from life from time to time. If there's one really helpful tip that I've learned in art school is that, once you know how to draw something from a realistic perspective, you'll have an easier time drawing that thing with your own spin or a different style because you know the fundamentals and basics of how that thing looks. It's the same for drawing a person's face - what better way to know how to draw a face, than to draw one from real life. It's not easy and it might not look amazing but you'll be teaching yourself along the way of how to draw eyes, how to draw the nose and even where facial features are on the face (proportion does a lot to make your drawing look good).

Your art is not bad in the least - anyone who is able to create something should be proud of themselves because you're the only one in the world who can draw like you but that's something you need to improve on and own. Every artist has been in the position where criticism hurts but if people are willing to give you advice on what can be improved, doesn't that mean that these people care about you and your work? Think of it like that.

If you're ever in a position where you need honest feedback, don't be afraid to speak up because I and likely those who have gave advice thus far are more than willing to lend a fellow artist a helping hand :>

Edited by carefreejules

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So, it seems I have to options: Get better at drawing or have someone else do it for me. ...Kidding.

I'll take everything into account. I've already started trying a few things, and my art is already looking different, but not sure if it's "good" yet.

In the mean time, don't let this talk of art bog the thread. Keep sending me those voices, music samples, and ideas you have! Art is not the only thing I need help on!

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Thought I'd share my attempts from last night and this morning.

[spoiler=large image]kyles_by_powermaster64-da9d7ds.jpg

My favorite is the finished one on the bottom-left. It may look similar to what I've already done, but I drew it slightly different. I took my own features into account, trying to figure out what features line up with what, while still trying to retain an "anime-esque" look to it. The two overlapping circles at the bottom was the basis. I placed the eyes in the middle, kept the chin within the boundaries of the bottom, and had the hair slightly extend past the top.

What I feel is holding me back on this, though, are the faces. I want the characters to have many expressions, so I'm also trying to pick a style that is easy to "edit", so to speak...

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Thought I'd share my attempts from last night and this morning.

[spoiler=large image]kyles_by_powermaster64-da9d7ds.jpg

My favorite is the finished one on the bottom-left. It may look similar to what I've already done, but I drew it slightly different. I took my own features into account, trying to figure out what features line up with what, while still trying to retain an "anime-esque" look to it. The two overlapping circles at the bottom was the basis. I placed the eyes in the middle, kept the chin within the boundaries of the bottom, and had the hair slightly extend past the top.

What I feel is holding me back on this, though, are the faces. I want the characters to have many expressions, so I'm also trying to pick a style that is easy to "edit", so to speak...

There isn't really a style that makes drawing emotions and facial expressions easy because I think you're getting a little ahead of yourself where you're focusing more on the style when you should really focus on actually knowing HOW to draw emotions first. Do you know how eyes change depending on the emotion, do you know how the eyebrows work? Once you know those things, there shouldn't be a debate of which style is going to make drawing different facial expressions easier because that's fundamentally something you should know how to do.

Edited by carefreejules

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