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I will be making concept art and art assets for a mobile game that is similar to mega run or windrunner.
This is a personal project that i can put on my portfolio.
I would like advice on technical specs for mobile game visual assets, as art style and direction.
I will try to update everyday with progress and hope to get some great honest feedback.
Thank you guys.
ps, these images are similar to what i am trying to do.
Hmm... "readibility" is the word key with "re-usable assets" That can be an interesting project, looking forward to know more
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Having done a few mobile games I can say that you're going to want to figure out what program you want to use (and can use) for the art, because it will make a huge difference visually as well as in terms of space (vector-based drawings take up less space than raster-based drawings, etc). Also you're going to want to determine which engine you'll be using, because that can have a significant impact on what you can do from a technical standpoint.
I look forward to hearing more! Feel free to PM me if you'd like to talk more.
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This project is for showing off my art and my pipe line skills first and foremost.
I haven't chose the engine yet but I was thinking unity.
If you have any other recommendation i am all ears.
I chose to do my character as a voodoo doll.
I fixed up values several times to make my character pop out behind the background.
As you may know the marked for mobile games and apps is pretty unforgiving. Beside advertizement (I'm no expert on this), is your project based on clever/new ideas? What is the concept of the game? A basic 2d platformer obviously wont be popping out. I don't know how far everything is planned, so I can only judge from what I see.
Your background doesn't fit with the foreground - the actual playing area. And the actual playing area seems pretty broing, everyone will think "hey, the background is so nice, why do I have to play around in this boring foreground?" It IS a way how many ppl built up the system, but I wouldn't recommend it if it's not necessary. Better combine foregorund and background visually, eventually even make the background interact to a certain point - forest behind throws shadows over the foreground, involving your playable character too - character will at a certain point switch from front to background. Eventually some of those trees have a platforming function - like you can climb up on them/jump over them / use them in any other way.
If everything stays the same, it is boring. Your character's visuals should change, depending on the level. Having it pop out alone wont do, the worst case (which imho is currently happening) - he doesn't fit in because his colors and everything rather make him look like he's cut intot he environment. No, he should fit with his environment AND pop out. This means, you still need to give him the colors of the background to the point of having the same light and ambient ligh reflection (as well as orage wont be pure orange at night). If you want, add some glowing element (like making his heart glow red and reflect a bit over the body) - His heart glow could also reflect on the area surrounding him. Take this as a simple idea beside a lot of things you could do. All of this, especially if drawn, will be a bit harder to solve, but the better it looks in the end. If necessary, change your character's visuals depending on each level/ every situation.
Okay, so you've decided to use a voodoo puppet as the character. How far does that effect the gameplay? Beside having him visually change, his abilities should be chosen clever in order to make the game appealing. If you use a voodoo puppet, the first thing everyone will think of was a character able to kill his enemies by hurting himself. You could solve puzzles by infecting yourself with the crucial element and then changing it by changing yourself in one way or the other (this doesn't automatically mean "hurting", you can advance the meaning of a voodoo puppet. Easiest solution coming to my mind - a raised bridge is in the way. Infect your self with some transportable element of the bridge, then fall, and the bridge will imitate the action). Finding ideas for this is then the challenge, and how nice your ideas are will ultimately decide if players decide to continue playing after a certain point. In any case, I highly recommend to make add functions that give your character theme a plot, if not turning them into the main concept of the game.
Finally, levels shouldn't be static. And especially visual shocks are important. Add unforeseen actions, stuff that breaks with what you expect to be the "rules" of a level. Limbo for example has a lot of visual shockers, and the best was probably the point when the world starts rotating.
Last edited by Swamp Thing; February 14th, 2013 at 04:19 AM.
Honestly, the first thing that comes to mind when I see your character is Sackboy from Little Big Planet. I'm not sure if you intend to sell this game or not, but if you do I'd suggest putting in more work to make Voodoo Boy look more distinct. Voodoo is a fun angle for a platformer. I agree with Swamp Thing that you should harness this more in your gameplay and level design.
Thanks for the comments guys!
I am no game designer, but i will definitely use my high concept to come up with compelling visual elements.
I was thinking this is more of a fast paced running game, i am worried that too many interactive background elements will distract speeding foreground.
I will go back and do more passes on the character, i agree that he can be more compelling.
I fixed up the foreground, and i am going to add stylized fog and running trails or dust trails behind the character.
I wouldn't have such a complex background for a running game. If you look at other ones like Robot Unicorn Attack, Jetpack Joyride, or Temple Run, the background is pretty flat and boring because the focus needs to be on what's happening directly in front of you. Even Windrunner's background is more or less one solid mass.
Also, not sure if those grey buttons are just temporary placeholders, but you should change the colour so they stand out more. Stuff like that is easy to spot on a screenshot, but in the middle of a game they're going to get lost to the background.
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I actually quite liked your previous foreground, the background just doesn't seem to work very well. For a fast paced game the trees passing by would just end up being messy, and extremely repetetive. And having the background so much more detailed then the foreground just ends up working against you, it's harder to place objects on top of it and have them stand out. All the linework you have going on in the trees seems unnecessary, you could achieve a lot cleaner effect by just using small value/color differences and have the background stay back a lot better.
Think of building the background as building large masses that you might add occasional detail to, not as detailed drawings. If you add lines, make sure they are not as dark as lines in the foreground, and prefertably blend in with the color of the background in general. It's nice to make the background and foreground feel like a whole, but if you have elements from the background turning into foreground elements, like Swamp Thing suggested, they will need to designed seperately for the background and for the foreground to make sure the player will always be able to tell the background and foreground apart with just a quick glance.
Generally I think starting with the background is the wrong way of going about it, as the foreground elements are the important ones. The background has a support role, and how can you design that unless you know what it should support?
Thank you guys for the suggestions.
I will post the foreground and background sketch very soon.
I will give the level another try with your suggestion in your mind.