Battle Sprites

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Sylon
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Battle Sprites

Postby Sylon » Tue May 24, 2005 11:35 am

THIS IS A CONSTANTLY UPDATED POST

This Thread's Table of Contents


Page 1: My completed work and WIP, and about the spider.
Page 2: Claudius idle sprite specs.
Page 3: About Claudius idle animation and sword.
Page 4: About black outlines and anti-aliasing.
Page 5: About slime, skeleton, snake, and animated BGs.
Page 6: About skeleton, snake, spider redo, and alpha channels.
Page 7: Claudius' face color, and spider damage frames.
Page 8: Skeleton, idle animation rough draft.
Page 9: Idle animation, Claudius' appearance.
Page 10: Claudius' hair.
Page 11: Skeleton, claudius attack animations, claudius idle animation, scorpion frame.
Page 12: Scorpion details.
Page 13: Scorpion details.
Page 14:
Page 15:
Page 16:
Page 17:
Page 18:
Page 19:
Page 20:

I will place my finished work on this post so that referring to other pages of this thread should only be to gather information (not search for my sprites!).

Here is where I want to read some feedback on my monster designs (and my renditions of Vendetta's concept art). I might not want outside viewers to see the battle sprites, though, so I might just put them all in the ftp site and leave it there.

Images (hopefully completed):

[img:64:128]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/characters/claudius/claudius_idle.gif[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/spider.png[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/spider_d1.png[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/spider_d2.png[/img]

[img:65:62]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/spider_d3.png[/img]

[img::]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/snake.png[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/greenslime/greenslime.png[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/greenslime/greenslime_d1.png[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/greenslime/greenslime_d2.png[/img]

[img:64:64]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/greenslime/greenslime_d3.png[/img]

[img::]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/sylon/battlesprites/enemies/skeleton.png[/img]

My Current Battle Work:

1. Scorpion boss

2. Claudius Attack Animations

My Upcoming Battle Work:

1. Vendetta's Rock Demon

2. Antlion boss
Last edited by Sylon on Tue Oct 10, 2006 5:55 pm, edited 20 times in total.
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Postby Balthazar » Tue May 24, 2005 3:14 pm

The body looks just awesome.  Nice detail.  The head....well...the head looks like Abe Lincon (I'm sorry, that's what I see!).  Could you make it more spidery?
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Postby Sylon » Tue May 24, 2005 3:30 pm

LoL, I thought so, the head is what throws everything off.  It's actually supposed to have four eyes (there are two tiny ones above the big ones).

The reason I made a human face was because that was the kind of spider I saw in my dream--human face, four eyes, disgusting sharp teeth.  I thought it would be spooky.  If you really want I can make it look spidery with red eyes but the reason I didn't do that is because I felt it would be such a "generic" monster, uncreative for Allacrost.  Do you think I could lower the mouth and just make the upper eyes more visible instead?  Whatever I do has to be solid, because, this takes a lot of time so I need to know exactly.  Plus I'd like to see what Roots has to say to seal the deal.

Tim, thanks for the feedback!  Glad you like the body too!
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Postby Balthazar » Tue May 24, 2005 6:44 pm

The generic argument is a fair point.  That said, a spider is a spider.  They're everywhere.  If fact, you swallow bout a dozen while you sleep over the course of your lifetime (on average).
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Postby Sylon » Tue May 24, 2005 7:17 pm

LOL okay if you don't mind having a generic spider in the game, sure.  I think one with red eyes will look good.  By the way I heard that on average it was 3 spiders per lifetime, and they only crawled into your mouth, but, I didn't know people SWALLOWED them.  Hahah!!  Besides I don't worry because I breathe through my nose when I sleep.  I know it because I trained myself.  ZERO SPIDERS FOR MY STOMACH, BABY!!!

And Tim, is Roots sort of, the dictator of opinions around here, or could your opinions hold just as much weight as his for this project?  In other words, does it matter if I start working on the new spider (in your vision) or should I wait for Roots' opinion too like I originally was?  :huh:  HE'S TAKING TOO LONG FOR MY IMPATIENCE!!

No Roots, we're not planning to start a rebellion with Tim as the leader!  :devil:
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Postby Roots » Tue May 24, 2005 8:40 pm

Everyone's vote has equal weight here. Mine doesn't have more weight by any means. My job is simply to coordinate things, not to dictate anything or anyone. :angel:


Sorry it took so long for me to get back to you (cause you know, 16 hours is a really long time :heh: ). I share the exact same setiments as Tim. Body is awesome, face looks too :| It looks spooky/weird, but not scary. I'd rather have a spidery spider because usually when you start making chimeras and stuff, that's for more advanced/difficult monsters in my experience.


And for the record, I don't believe that spider swallowing in your sleep myth. I mean, who conducted that study, how, and perhaps more importantly WHY!?!? I mean, did he monitor 5 people sleeping their entire lives or something? I doubt it. :rolleyes:
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Postby Sylon » Tue May 24, 2005 10:01 pm

Alrighty now we're talkin'!  Yeah 16 hours IS long if you're me and you're high on sugar all day!!!!!!

I am willing to make the Claudius battle sprite on my own now--just need specs.  Should he be in a battle position (crouched to maybe 3/4 normal height?  Or should he stand up straight?), and should he be sort of, drawing a sword (maybe he shouldnt if he's allowed to equip different weapons)?  Also, should he look like an ANIME Claudius or more of an American-cartoon-looking Claudius (more realistic than ANIME IMO, but more difficult to draw I assume).  Lastly, what will his facial expression be?  Of course this last characteristic I can modify easily after I submit the sprite to you, so it won't be a big problem.

I know you want to get programming underway with these new sprites.  Currently I have to wet my dried-up black ink to print out grids to draw on, but I can manage till then, at least for about 3 more sprites 2 battle tiles in area or 1.
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Postby Roots » Wed May 25, 2005 1:08 am

Ok, good to hear you're willing to work on his battle sprite. I thought you just wanted to focus on monster sprites for now and I was going to see if Safir-Kreuz had time to come up with a model. Here are the specs that I can think of:


- Height: 128 pixels
- Width: 64 pixels
- Attire: Exactly the same as his map sprite
- Stance: knees slilghtly bent and feet planted slightly wider than shoulder width (I have a good reason for this ;)). 3/4s height is a little too much of a reduction and you don't typically bend over that much in a battle stance :heh:
- Position: I was thinking his body could be facing the viewer, with his head turned to the side staring at his enemy
- Facial expression: serious and determined. He's in a battle after all
- Sword: This is the hardest part. At first I thought it would be cool if he had it sheathed initially and then drew it out and charged the enemy when he attacked. But then I thought "what idiot would keep his sword sheathed in the middle of a battle?" So maybe it should be drawn and he's holding it in the air with one hand, then grabs it with his second hand when he charges in to strike? I dunno, ideas anyone?
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Postby Sylon » Wed May 25, 2005 2:10 am

Okay!  I'm eager to get this show started.

"Position: I was thinking his body could be facing the viewer, with his head turned to the side staring at his enemy"

Ok, so, his feet would be planted isometrically facing the viewer though, right?  Like, his two feet are planted at the same angle of the spider's legs (except facing the opposite direction obviously), and the frontal part of his body is clearly visible to the viewer?  Or do you want the feet to be planted on the same flat plane?  I think the answer is obviously the isometric one but just being 100% sure!   :heh:

"Facial expression: serious and determined. He's in a battle after all"

LOL I know.  I guess what I meant was, like, eyebrows pointing down?  Or straight?  Some heroes look tough just by looking "calm" in battle, not "angry", right?  Will he be gritting his teeth or have his mouth shut?  Stuff like that.  If that's all up to me, I'll gladly explore my pathways!  

Sorry to make it seem like a lot depends on your opinion, if you think that's a bother!   :eyespin:

For the sword--  I'll put it in his right hand.  The rest sounds good to me.

OH WAIT!  And one more thing--the anime question.  Does he look like an anime character? (Is his chin and nose sharp and pointy basically [lol]?)
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Postby Balthazar » Wed May 25, 2005 3:11 am

Take it easy on the complicated animations for now Tyler (both of you).  I'd sooner have two or three decently animated sprites than one uber Claudius.
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Postby gloomcover » Wed May 25, 2005 6:10 am

I hate being off topic, but that link had other stuff too so...

I really liked that tree you had there.  That said, I like the one without the outline better.
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Postby Sylon » Wed May 25, 2005 5:39 pm

Tim I don't plan on animating anything yet!  Hehe.  MAYBE an attack sequence for Claudius...but really I don't think I'd need to make many frames for a regular sword slash (maybe 4 or 5).

Gloom--

I already PMed you heh

Roots and Tim-- I finished the spider, go look at him at the same site. Spider1.png  Tell me what you think!

BY THE WAY I am keeping the face of the other spider perhaps for a zombie or something!  It looks too good to throw away!!  Hehe.
-[Sylon Shanings]-, A Servant of Allacrost.
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Postby Balthazar » Thu May 26, 2005 4:23 pm

rawr! Scary!  :approve:
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Postby Rain » Thu May 26, 2005 8:11 pm

gloomcover wrote:I hate being off topic, but that link had other stuff too so...

I really liked that tree you had there.  That said, I like the one without the outline better.


...I think the outline of the tree and whether or not it will look good will depend upon the artistic state of the surrounding environs.  Definite lines can create some cool contrasting effects at times, but only if if fits the environment around it.  I think it looks better to be more defined.  It stands out more.
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Postby Roots » Thu Jun 02, 2005 6:27 pm

Holy crap, I think I just had a great idea. I was thinking about Sylon's idea of changing the battle sprite to look more beaten up when it takes on more damage (like in FFMQ). Now in FFMQ, the sprite image would just suddenly change when it took on more damage, which looked cheap. So I thought how we can make the damage appear progressively, and then I thought "hey, why not apply tile blending to the sprites?". For those of you who haven't seen CamelJockey's tile blending demo, basically there was a dirt and a water tile and you can dynamically change the tile to change the ratio of dirt : water.


So what we'd do here is have two sprites. One is the full-health sprite, and one is the "on the verge of death" sprite. As the percentage of current HP to max HP gets less and less, the damage becomes more and more apparent, in a gradual manner. I think it will look awesome. There are a few caveats though:

1) Everytime an enemy (or character) takes damage, the video engine would have to re-draw the sprite frame. Not a big deal, but this leads me into #2...

2) For sprite animations from characters, we can't just alwas use the normal/100% HP frames. We'd have to re-draw ALL the animation frames as well to reflect this damage (and so, each animation frame would have to have a healthy and verge-of-death frame). Sounds way too costly both in terms of artwork required and computation.

3) The 'on-the-verge-of-death' frame couldn't have something incredibly dramatic, like a missing leg, head fallen off, etc. Otherwise the transition between these frames would look very strange. (Imagine a half-transparent arm holding a sword, and a bloody, severed half-transparent arm on the ground).



Given these limitations, I think our best approach is to use this for only enemy sprites (eliminates #2). #1 I think we can deal with. To mitigate the limitations #3 presents on the artist (no dramatic changes in appearance), what we might do is create 4 sprites instead of two. The first pair would correspond to, say, the upper 75% of the HP (one sprite full health, one sprite damaged). The pair for the lower 25% would be where a severe change in appearance (like missing limbs) could take place. Since each sprite pair would have a very similar structure with minor altercations, I don't think it would be too costly for the artist to manage.

Still though, Even like that the dramatic changes wouldn't look good, because there is no way we animate the normal pose to the defected pose. It might just be best for us to forget about huge dramatic changes (after all, do we really need the game to be that gory?) and just use the single sprite pair. I think we can still make the sprite look pretty beat-up and near death in the normal pose (ie armor could have large holes, swords could be worn down, arms could be covered in blood, etc).



What do you guys think about that? Holy crap I typed a lot. I better get back to work before I'm caught :uhoh:
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Postby Balthazar » Thu Jun 02, 2005 7:34 pm

This coming from the guy who says to stop putting more food on the table.  I say :disapprove:  Maybe in a future module, or if the artists finish all of the game art before the code is done.
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Postby Roots » Thu Jun 02, 2005 8:39 pm

I don't think it's putting a whole lot on the table. If we go along with what I'm thinking, every enemy sprite is going to need one extra frame for it's damaged look. There's going to be something like only 10 enemies in the prologue, and modifying an existing sprite is *a lot* easier/faster than designing a sprite from scratch. Code-wise, we've already got the tile blending feature planned so that's there. All that you'd have to do in the battle code is check every update if the enemy's HP level changed, and if so call a function in the video code like this:

VideoManager->UpdateBattleSprite((float)(enemy.current_hp / enemy.max_hp));


which will automaticagically free the old sprite image, create the new one, and ba-boom, we're done. But I do agree that it is a "less-mission-critical" feature right now, but I just wanted to see what you guys thought about the idea.
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Postby Balthazar » Thu Jun 02, 2005 10:58 pm

I would want to see some proof of concept screenshots before I approved this.
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Postby Sylon » Thu Jun 02, 2005 11:31 pm

My opinion on that is, I think as long as I can only draw 1 extra monster sprite (modify originals) it would be fine for me--MY problem with it is, the monsters would look like they are just sitting there, fading into being scratched up, without moving their limbs or anything.  If a minotaur is pointing at the characters with his arm, and he gets beat up, when his arm fades into being "damaged", it will still be pointing at the characters.  I would think he might get tired and maybe kneel down or something, ya know??!

Do you guys need the Claudius battle sprite to actually test your own battle coding?  Or can you wait?

Right now I am pixelizing him onto my laptop.  I think, before I color him in, I want you to look at him and tell me if it's ok to keep him or if you want me to modify him differently (raise his head, bend his knees less, etc.)

Come by and check tonight, if not, tomorrow I should have him pixelized!  I HATE drawing human bodies.  It's hard!  Drawing monsters is easier because their forms aren't predetermined.
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Postby Balthazar » Thu Jun 02, 2005 11:52 pm

Heh, don't worry, battle code isn't close to needing sprites (as much as I wish it was).

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