Illustrating emotion

A discussion area for general design issues that staff would like detailed feedback on.

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Which emotion illustration(s) would you like to see?

#1: Full sprite animation
3
21%
#2: Character portraits
3
21%
#3: Emoticon pop-ups
1
7%
Combo: #1 & #2
7
50%
Combo: #1 & #3
0
No votes
Combo: #2 & #3
0
No votes
All of them! #1, #2, and #3. More is better, right...?
0
No votes
I have an even better idea that I'm going to share with you guys...
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 14
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Roots
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Illustrating emotion

Postby Roots » Thu Jul 07, 2005 2:51 am

So this has been a topic of debate for quite some time with us too. How do we illustrte the emotions and feelings of the characters? There's three ways that we thought of:

1) Full sprite animation

Think FFVI. When someone was surprised, their whole sprite would jump up with a shocked look on their face. It incorporates body motion as well as facial expressions, which is a Good Thing (TM).

2) Character portraits

Grandia II is a good example here. The dialogue boxes for characters included a portrait of the character's face, which changed depending on how the character felt. The benefit here is that you can show much more detail in the facial expressions.

3) Emoticon pop-ups

I got this idea from the game Surival Project (pretty fun game and free last time I checked BTW). Characters have little pop-up bubbles just above their heads in which a short animation of the character's face (shocked, tired, etc.). It was very anime-ish and looked pretty cool I thought.



So of these three, which would you the player like to see in the game and why? If you have another idea of course share it with us. Personally, I'm a little torn between using just #1 or #1 and #2 together. I love the detail in #2, and I love the "alive" feeling of the sprites in #1.....so I guess I vote for both 1 & 2 :)
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turin
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Postby turin » Thu Jul 07, 2005 3:43 am

I think that #2 is the best, but #1 would also be nice to have. My one concern about #1 is it would take a whole lot of art. I think it would be best to implement #2 at first, then, if you get enough artists, implement #1 later. Like what we did at Wesnoth with death animations.
I am Turin Turambar, Master of Doom, by Doom Mastered.
Also a general meddler at the Wesnoth forums.
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Roots
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Postby Roots » Thu Jul 07, 2005 3:59 am

turin wrote:I think that #2 is the best, but #1 would also be nice to have. My one concern about #1 is it would take a whole lot of art. I think it would be best to implement #2 at first, then, if you get enough artists, implement #1 later. Like what we did at Wesnoth with death animations.


Yeah this is a big concern obviously. What we came up with to solve the massive art requirement for #1 was to seperate sprites into 3 classes: characters, npc, and "advanced npc" (still haven't found a better name for it). Character sprites are the ones you can play and control; the main characters in the game. These sprites would have a large number of emotional frames created. The advanced npc spritse are non-playable but essential side characters. These would have a more limited number of frames. And for regular npcs, they'd have even less (if any) emotional frames. So that's how we're going to try and keep the art requirement from getting overly excessive. For #2, we could do something very similar for the portraits.
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Postby Roots » Sun Jul 10, 2005 10:46 am

Well looks like so far we are going with #1 and #2. I'm glad that there's a clear majority vote this time. :heh:


One of the things we've been discussing internall as a result of this thread is in what style we want to do the face portraits. The two main choices we have are to create the portraits via pixel art, or use colored hand-drawn sketches. Of the two, I think hand-drawn sounds very interesting because I believe the character's faces will have much more realism in them. Any opinions? :huh:
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turin
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Postby turin » Sun Jul 10, 2005 3:32 pm

Well, it all depends on how big the portraits willl be able to be. If its smaller than about 150*150, I would use pixel art, but any larger I'd use colored hand-drawn.
I am Turin Turambar, Master of Doom, by Doom Mastered.

Also a general meddler at the Wesnoth forums.
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Postby Disto » Sun Jul 10, 2005 7:35 pm

1 & 2 would be very cool and look great, but yeah would take a lot of time, but i'd be worth it.
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Postby Classic_gamer » Mon Jul 11, 2005 8:09 am

I vote for hand-drawn face portraits. Why? Because hand-drawn always seems more authentic and it gives more of a WOW factor.

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