It is our function as artists to make the spectator see the world our way – not his way. (Mark Rothko)
Fifteen days are past since my last post about animations, and I practiced a lot in the meantime. For a tactical RPG basic 2 cycle animations could be acceptable, but the last two weeks I had to face a new problem: bigger sprites need more frames to not results too stiff. So when I designed the 64*64 Hibagon (the japanese traditional name for the Yeti) I realized that a 2 cycle even just for the walk couldn’t be enough. I had to split the main sprite in 4 pieces and animate ’em detached from the torso, using a 3 cycle for movement and slam attack. Satisfied with the final product another problem arise: it was much better than my whole production for this game, especially compared with the planned bosses.
The risk was that common enemies could appear more intimidating than the Spirit at the end of every stage. So I had to redesign the rules for bosses, and make ’em bigger than I previously chosen. Not all of them would be physical massive, and for variety this may change based upon the enemies of each level. In a stage with mighty glaciers and stone wall you will may find a small tiny lethal boss, but encountering more mobs and fragile speedster could take you to a 128*128 bold monster to tear down! And this is the case of my brand new Efreet for the Fiery Pit.
As for the Hibagon, it was not easy to keep straight on rules with bigger sprites, tempted by more colors and details, but if something I’ve learned in these months practicing on Wizards’ Duel arts and palette that’s: give yourself a few creation rules and respect them till the end. Adapt, bound, and sneak in, fill every spaces of that rules, but do not break it. Limits and their overcome by smart solutions is what art is about, and too often we forget about that.
Italian renaissance was built on rules, as much as everything we called art in the past and present. What cannot answer to rules cannot simply be called art, because rules are like names for things: they simply inform about the thing itself, an there’s nothing outside them. Oh, and to choose to make art without rule is a rule itself.
And the man gave names to every beast, and to the fowl of the heavens, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a help meet for him. (Genesis 2:20)
So, Fiery Pit enemies and boss sprites sheet are almost done. I need to finish the main characters and then I will start with architecture and scenic objects. Our challenge is to finish all for the end of December and release in January a first playable test level. Will we be able to keep this plan true?
If you appreciate our work so far, don’t be shy and spare a coin for a super coffee boost! Wizard’s Duel will be free-to-play, but is not free-to-make. So, give if you can and donate!
Thank you so much for the kind attention, and let us know your opinion.
Daniele Lynx Lasalandra – Art Director