It has been about two months since the last post and there have been HUGE overhauls!
First, I worked on a variety of mockups per the last post. I started by mocking up what a character might look like with higher-resolution sprites:
Then I mocked up what the level might look like in the same style:
Then I played with what the background walls might look like, starting with things like windows:
Then I took that style, created some quick-and-dirty tiles and played with a map in Tiled to see what it would really look like:
I didn’t like aspects of this style so I played with color palettes and changed stone styles a little bit. This is a Photoshop mockup, not actual functioning tiles:
I liked that and turned a lot of the foreground into real tiles. I created a Tiled level and then mocked in the background in Photoshop. This is a combination of real tiles in the foreground and mocked up sketches in the background:
I turned the background concepts into tiles too, and I also played with tiled light pieces. This is all real tiles:
Finally, I got this all into the actual game. This was a big effort because ALL of the art changed. Moving to larger tile sizes broke literally everything and also required changes to character movement and properties because levels were now further apart.
Another thing I’ve struggled with is character animation. Even being super excited about art, I have to have limitations. I can’t animate hundreds of frames of character art and ever finish this game. I also can’t have characters with no animation. So, I have been working on a procedural animation. I think this is going to be a good balance of quality/presentation and reasonable level of effort. Characters won’t run and have complex leg movements, they’ll float.
The image at the top of this post is the current product. The game is once again playable with procedurally-animated characters, higher resolution tiles, better parallax, new character art and all new tiles. This is an interesting graphic of the art journey so far: