Resource Making Tips!

Discussion pertaining to resources, stories/characters and gameplay ideas in this forum dedicated to games that are just a faint glow.
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Crusader2
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Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Wed Jan 14, 2009 9:03 pm

Hey, I've been noticing some resources floating around here which, when the appear to be high quality at first, turn out to be lower quality than some people would think. I'm not saying that these resources are bad, I'm just saying that they could be better. So, here are some tips I used whenever I made a resource, even though I didn't make many. ;)

1. Eliminate the Edge! (By Crusader2)

Far too many times I've seen a potentially great resource brought down to the lowly level of average because of a very thin and hardly noticably white edge surrounding it. What most people don't realize is that, when you use a real picture of something to base a resource off of, there is a blur caused on the edge of the object. When you are zoomed in, the edge just looks like any other pixel, and most people don't ever think of it as more. HOWEVER, when you zoom out, there is a faint edge surrounding your image that is caused by that blur. So, it is best to eliminate exactly ONE row of pixels from the edge of an object. This should either eliminate or drastically cut down the edge surrounding the object.

2. Not too Perfect! (By Crusader2)

Sometimes it is better to make some imperfections in a resource so as to retain the idea that it is in a video game. In 3d modeling, modelers smothe out the edges of a box so as not to give it perfect, clean cut, razor sharp edges which don't exist in real life, unless it's the edge of a kitchen knife or something. Similarily, something should not look exactly lifelike because it stands out too much from the rest of the game. Objects need to blend in with everything else unless they are made to stand out.

3. Keep it in Style! (By Crusader2)

When making a game, it is best to try and keep all of the resources at about the same quality. If one object looks like it came straight out of real life, then ALL of the objects should look like that. Unless you want to make new characters, you should keep everything at about the same quality as the character; make it look like it was made one pixel at a time. There are a multitude of different ways to do this, such as creating a blur or any other effect. Use something other than MS Paint, just because it is incredibly limited. I reccommend GIMP. I haven't tried it yet, but have heard that it is amazing.

4. Test it Out! (By Blood Raven)

You made the resource, but didn't take the time to test it to see if it works properly. This causes the downloader trouble, and makes him or her angry. I've seen a few resources, not going to name them, where the holding frames are all jacked up. Or on some environments the collision rectangle is too small, or too large. Or there is no ammunition item.

5. Symbol! (By Blood Raven)

I've seen symbols on resources that are great, or real images, awesome! But please, if you took the time to make the symbol great, make the actual resource good too. Or if the symbol is real, try to make the actual look real.

6. Use shading! (By ZhugeLiang)

Shading is the process of lighting and darkening the same color when adding layers to make an object look more realistic. Many people just outline in black then fill in with the color of choice. This makes the resource look really plain and like you didn't put in any effort into what you were making. By taking the time to shade, the quality of your resource goes up, and more people are likely to download it.

7. Textures! (By Scaveleon)

Either make your game full of textures, or drop it completly. Think about a game which doesn't fit together because some things are textured, where others are not. If you plan on using textures, it's best to use it everywhere.

8. Be Reasonable! (By Mr. Numbers)

Dont use an out of the ordinary item unless its really needed in your game. Like lets say you are making a realistic war game, don't make a giant hot dog come out of no where and kill you. It just does not blend in.

9. Realism! (By shadowwarrior)

If you are making an RPG Game, don't have a computer or TV in your maps! Make your resource in a normal program first, then take them higher into a more experienced prgram, like GIMP or Photoshop. You can add great stuff, like lighting, blur, wet things and so on with these programs!
Last edited by Crusader2 on Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:01 pm, edited 8 times in total.
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Re: Crusader2's Resource Making Tips!

Postby Mike » Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:08 pm

Sweet, keep adding to this as people posts their own suggestions - that would rock, and I'll make a sticky if you agree :).

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Re: Crusader2's Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Thu Jan 15, 2009 7:00 pm

Sure, but you can take my name out of the title, since this will now be a communtiy thing. I have some more tips, but am drawing a blank as to what they are right now,
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Blood Raven » Thu Jan 15, 2009 9:47 pm

Symbol.

I've seen symbols on resources that are great, or real images, awesome! But please, if you took the time to make the symbol great, make the actual resource good too. Or if the symbol is real, try to make the actual look real.

Resource doesn't work.

You made the resource, but didn't take the time to test it to see if it works properly. This causes the downloader trouble, and makes him or her angry. I've seen a few resources, not going to name them, where the holding frames are all jacked up. Or on some environments the collision rectangle is too small, or too large. Or there is no ammunition item.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zhuge » Thu Jan 15, 2009 10:32 pm

Use shading -
Shading is the process of lighting and darkening the same color when adding layers to make an object look more realistic. Many people just outline in black then fill in with the color of choice. This makes the resource look really plain and like you didn't put in any effort into what you were making. By taking the time to shade, the quality of your resource goes up, and more people are likely to download it.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Thu Jan 15, 2009 10:46 pm

Added.

Mike, when's that sticky coming? :D
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Scaveleon » Fri Jan 16, 2009 9:18 am

Textures. Ugh...

Either make your game full of textures, or drop it completly. Think about a game which doesn't fit together because some things are textured, where others are not. If you plan on using textures, it's best to use it everywhere.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Sat Jan 17, 2009 12:06 am

Updated. :D
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Commander13CnC3 » Sat Jan 17, 2009 6:21 pm

Cool.I'm no good with textures(like shading)so my game is probably going to apear dull.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby sinjin48 » Sat Jan 17, 2009 8:05 pm

man, you gotta have shadeing!

use shadeing!
it`ll look very poor quality if there is no shadeing!
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Commander13CnC3 » Sat Jan 17, 2009 8:06 pm

thats my point.I cant figure out shading.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Mr.Numbers » Sun Feb 01, 2009 2:50 am

Be Reasonable

Dont use an out of the ordinary item unless its really needed in your game. Like lets say you are making a realistic war game, don't make a giant hot dog come out of no where and kill you. It just does not blend in.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Partysofa » Tue Feb 03, 2009 9:31 am

Realism

If you are making an RPG Game, don't have a computer or TV in your maps! Make your resource in a normal program first, then take them higher into a more experienced prgram, like GIMP or Photoshop. You can add great stuff, like lighting, blur, wet things and so on with these programs! :D
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:57 pm

Updated.

This is going better that I thought it would.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Sun Feb 08, 2009 11:01 am

That has nothing to do with resources, shadowwarrior.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby C0c1 » Mon Feb 16, 2009 11:32 am

Look at the resource!

Would you use it in your game? If not its not good enough to upload on the site

Remove pink

Make sure you don't have little pink circles aroud your resource or floating in space
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ixayou » Fri Mar 13, 2009 5:33 pm

stop uploading unessescary items on the site (like a gem, stone or whatever, no one would download it)
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zhuge » Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:46 pm

What you may find useless, somebody may find useful. If you don't like it, rather, think it's useless, don't download it. Just have some plain ol' respect for the people who take the time to upload things for you to use, and stop criticizing the makers of the ones you don't use. ;)

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby cptkrush » Fri Mar 13, 2009 10:04 pm

Tiling
If your making a ground tile or a wall, try to make sure that it tiles well(that is, matches with itself so it doesn't look weird when placed side-by-side with itself), sometimes it can be hard to do but at least try, it will help the resource be more aesthetically pleasing in-game.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby jake.lutze » Sat Jun 20, 2009 11:39 pm

Crusader2 wrote:Use something other than MS Paint


I use MS paint... :oops:
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby MIV » Sun Jun 21, 2009 4:26 am

It's not the program, it's how you use it. I know people who make horrible resources using Photoshop CS4.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Sun Jun 21, 2009 8:14 pm

MIV wrote:It's not the program, it's how you use it. I know people who make horrible resources using Photoshop CS4.


Very true, but a high powered program, when used correctly, will yield better results than a lower power program. But that's just an average outcome; I use MS Paint for all of my sprites as well.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby MIV » Sun Jun 21, 2009 10:48 pm

It's pretty easy to get shading effects, and if you have a good program e.g. GIMP or PSCS3, you can make really kicka** shading effects that make your items more realistic.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ixayou » Sat Aug 22, 2009 11:28 pm

Dont make your graphics look flat

Unless your game looks flat of course. This has helped me out a lot when i first started making resources.
When you make a graphic you useually start by making the edge and fill it with a color. Then it will look like this Image

To make it look more like a ball, take the color used on the edge and make it a little brighter and draw right next to the edge.
Then it will look more like this Image

Hope you get what i mean, my english isnt so good :)
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby C0c1 » Sat Aug 29, 2009 4:03 pm

AKA shading! Good tip!
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zhuge » Sat Aug 29, 2009 4:37 pm

Already there. 8)

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:35 pm

Hey guys,

Sorry I haven't kept up with this; I've been busy with other things. If anybody's picked up anything good, please post it. I'll check this page once every few days from now on. :)

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zhuge » Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:49 pm

I can update if you want. I can edit your post.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby MIV » Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:59 pm

Another thing is, if you don't know what something looks like, check it up on google for an example, though copying and pasting is strongly discouraged unless you have the author's permission. At least, don't give us a half-a**ed graphic that you drew without knowing what it actually looks like.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Scaveleon » Fri Sep 11, 2009 8:43 am

Graphic clash

A graphical clash is when you mixture 2 different styles into a single game. Most commonly would be realistic textures mixed with cartoony figures. Because you use both styles, it doesn't hold any style properly. No style means it's harder to achieve immersion.

Style

When making graphics, you can lean yourself towards realistic graphics, or cartoony graphics, or maybe anime. Pick a style and use it. Realistic graphics are good with horrer games, cartoony is good for fantasy or games with a lot of colours, and anime is a form for cartoon, but is best with fantasy and colorful games too. In 2D games, it's hard to get realistic graphics because of the tediousness of making each invidual sprite. In 3D this is reversed, it's hard to make a cartoony game with 3D models, but it's possible.

Immersion

Immersion is when you feel the world you play in. Seeing as most games lets you go to another world, having your senses to be there can really make a game experience much better. To give the player immersion is pretty much based on what the player likes, but if you want more people to feel immersed to the game, good graphics are important. Very important.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby MIV » Sat Sep 12, 2009 3:25 am

Scaveleon wrote:Graphic clash

A graphical clash is when you mixture 2 different styles into a single game. Most commonly would be realistic textures mixed with cartoony figures. Because you use both styles, it doesn't hold any style properly. No style means it's harder to achieve immersion.

If you're lucky, the clash is very minor, as they both have approximately the same style, but really, don't take chances and rip Zelda and Crysis or something like that.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby keligorm » Tue Nov 10, 2009 12:22 am

I use Paint.net and there is a very useful plugin that I downloaded called bevel. What this does is makes an effect that looks like light is being reflected off the object. Its very usefull for anything that is suposed to be shiny. It can also take alot of work out of shading: so if you have paint.net I highly sugest you get this plugin.


Here is a comparison with the standard 001 sword: (Its kinda hard to see at this size though :( )
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby MIV » Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:20 am

The same can be done with Photoshop, or if you only have a basic drawing program just add on a few darker shades on the sides. Try to imagine what they look like with the shadow.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Deedasmi » Tue Nov 17, 2009 11:03 am

Ya. some of those simple built in features make things seem so powerful its insane. I had a friend spend 5 minutes in photoshop and turned an image from 2d to this really awsome looking 3d, with an amazing background, etc. Apparently, he hates making graphics. Lol

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby MIV » Tue Nov 17, 2009 10:41 pm

Deedasmi wrote:Ya. some of those simple built in features make things seem so powerful its insane. I had a friend spend 5 minutes in photoshop and turned an image from 2d to this really awsome looking 3d, with an amazing background, etc. Apparently, he hates making graphics. Lol

So do I. I get Pierrod to do it, but back on topic.
Scaveleon wrote:Immersion

Immersion is when you feel the world you play in. Seeing as most games lets you go to another world, having your senses to be there can really make a game experience much better. To give the player immersion is pretty much based on what the player likes, but if you want more people to feel immersed to the game, good graphics are important. Very important.

Graphics also have to be designed according to mood. If you intend to have a musty, dark sewer atmosphere for one of your maps, not only must you ensure that lighting and tiles are appropriate, but also the characters. Nobody wants to travel along a nice, dark sewer and see a cute little mouse there with big, anime eyes. That will completely ruin the mood.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Crusader2 » Mon Dec 21, 2009 6:25 pm

Wow, still Stickied and still moderately active. I'm impressed!

Just checkin in to see how my old community is doin, and to ask a mod to update the first post when I can't, as I have very little free time anymore :?

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ixayou » Fri Apr 09, 2010 1:31 am

When you are making tile-sets, make sure that the floor tile is not distracting from the player. You can do this by using colors with little contrast and using colors that is just a little darker than the other tile-sets in the map. (Shades that is further away or further down is darker. Shades that are high up is brighter)
And remember to remove the grid. The grid is when you see that you are not walking on a real map, but on a bunch of tiles. You can see the grid when a part of the floor tile looks different than the rest, and that flaw is being repeated over and over again on the map so you can almost see the "grid" the floor tile is placed on. Sorry for not being able to explain so good :P
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ciao-Gamer » Sat May 08, 2010 7:28 am

keligorm wrote:I use Paint.net and there is a very useful plugin that I downloaded called bevel. What this does is makes an effect that looks like light is being reflected off the object. Its very usefull for anything that is suposed to be shiny. It can also take alot of work out of shading: so if you have paint.net I highly sugest you get this plugin.


Here is a comparison with the standard 001 sword: (Its kinda hard to see at this size though :( )

Just to build on this, if you don't have Paint.NET, I strongly suggest you get it. Apart from the useful effects it has a lot more grunt that Microsoft's built in Paint and its completly free.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ixayou » Thu May 27, 2010 3:24 pm

Any professional pixel artist wrote:The gradient tool is evil!


*points at gradient tool*
EVIL!!!!! :evil:

What do you perfer?

This:
3-2.gif
Gradient tool
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Or this:
3-3.gif
Hand shaded
3-3.gif (979 Bytes) Viewed 13269 times
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zhuge » Thu May 27, 2010 4:16 pm

Hand-shaded.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zarthan » Mon Jun 07, 2010 12:56 pm

hand shaded sure, it shows a lot more texture and realism.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Mike » Thu Jun 10, 2010 10:16 pm

The gradient tool looks awful in that case because it's using so few colours.

To be fair, the gradient tool can be used as a basis, to which you could apply another tool, such as "noise" or what have you, to get an impressive effect like the first object and third object. The second object could be pure gradient, if used in sections.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zarthan » Sun Jul 11, 2010 5:18 pm

Gradient tool is helpfull, but people want to use it for everything when it should be used just as a base or few objects. So after you make an object with gradient, stop and think, does it really looks like what you wanted?

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby K-Pone » Sun Jul 18, 2010 5:46 pm

You can use the gradiant tool to make some surfaces looking more realistic. You can also adjust the opacity of the gradiant tool to about 20 to 50 percent, then it could look like the light is shining on it. If it doesn't look as like as you wanted it to look like, undo it and try again. Remember: The light normally shines from the top-left side, and if you're drawing in 3D it is shining from the front-top-left.
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Ixayou
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ixayou » Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:10 pm

I still think the gradient tool is evil :evil:

Anyway, i just noticed that i find it kind of annoying when people post the same resource over and over again only with different color. Especially when its just a normal unusable item with only one graphic and very few shades. Im not saying that i havent done that myself, i just think people should try not to do it unless its requested, nessecary or if the item has different properties, otherwise its mostly just spamming the resource section. Its just my own opinion though i dont excpect anyone to agree
Last edited by Ixayou on Tue Jul 20, 2010 3:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Automatically merged double post.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zarthan » Tue Jul 20, 2010 4:02 pm

I agree with you, it makes hard searching for an specifict resource and almost everybody has image editors with HUE and collor changing sections.

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Zhuge » Wed Jul 21, 2010 11:10 pm

Aye, I'm too lazy to recolor it myself though. :P
I do... somewhat agree though, just because the hilt of the sword has a gem on it, recolored three times; Does it need to be uploaded with the same stats? Couldn't you make it a different sword? Though I do think that if it's like the sword itself is Silver, Brass, Gold, Blue, Red, etc... You could upload those individually, though in all it all depends on who's downloading it. I've had a resource and I've changed the stats before, but It's still credited.
It's also another thing to have the same built in resource, just different stats and a changed name.
For instance -
Sword: 100 dollars, 128px range, 10 dmg. [Default Sword Graphic]
Sword of Strength: 500 dollars, 128px range, 15 dmg. [Default Sword Graphic]

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Ixayou » Wed Sep 15, 2010 12:40 pm

Distinguish between real-life'ish and realistic

Often when people hear the word 'realistic' they always think about stuff looking like taken from real life (ex. ripped a google picture of a real item)

Realistic means that the picture you are looking at, or the map you are playing in feels as if it could have been real, and that it is easy for the eye to understand. All of the graphics has to go together so that they look like they are all from the same place (instead of cartoony one place and pillow shaded another place).

I am saying this because some people say like "i am going to make the most realistic game ever! all i have to do is rip pictures from google and use them", and "realistic? no way dude i am making a cartoony game, so i dont need to make it realistic at all!"

This is a shame, because by only using pictures from google, you make the picture hard to understand for the eye, because there is just a lot of pictures over and over eachother. I am not saying its a bad thing to use reallife pictures, but i am saying that some people doesnt put effort into making all the graphics look well together, then it still clash even though the pictures are somewhat the same quality. You still need to think about shades and such even though your resource is already there and looks good alone. More on shading below.

By making it cartoony, you still have to give the player the feel of walking on a map. This is usually done by using the right colors, wich means no detailing is needed so it will still look cartoony even though its more realistic (same goes for reallife resources). What most people do when they make a cartoony game, is that they use too many complementary colors with eachother. This will result in poking the players eyes out! You need to give the eyes something comfortable to look at, and you do this by using brighter/complementary colors on items or areas that are higher up than the rest, then usually the stuff on the ground can be a little darker and less contrast. That way the eye can easily understand what is what, and this makes it more comfortable for the player.

(btw, dont use black for shades. try using dark blue and purple, it will give more deapth ;) )
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Gameboy » Thu Oct 28, 2010 4:14 am

Does anyone know if there is a website that has free sounds tat are VIRUS -FREE!? I had to get my pc rebooted because of thousands of virues please help thanks.. :|

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby sinjin48 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 11:09 am

What does that have to do with resource making?
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Gameboy » Fri Oct 29, 2010 12:31 am

sinjin48 wrote:What does that have to do with resource making?


Good question i thought it would be ok here? but where would you like me to instead..?

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby sinjin48 » Fri Oct 29, 2010 11:01 am

Resource section preferably. Just make a request topic.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby meeta » Sun Oct 31, 2010 6:11 pm

Gameboy wrote:Does anyone know if there is a website that has free sounds tat are VIRUS -FREE!? I had to get my pc rebooted because of thousands of virues please help thanks.. :|

how can sound files give you viruses
protip exe files aren't sounds
also yes thousands of virus? just reboot that'll fix it... not...

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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Gamerdude » Sun Oct 31, 2010 10:10 pm

People attach viruses to the file, or simply claim a virus is a different sort of file.

But back on topic.
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Re: Resource Making Tips!

Postby Samulis » Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:51 pm

Three tips for folks if any of these are helpful. (yes, I know... big bump here from the last post)

If you want to make an item based on something in history, take the time to research out what the item looked like and how it was used, as well as what it was called and worth. It's also always worth it to do a google search for images of your item and look at those images as a base for what you want to do. This applies to almost any content you can imagine. Working on a knight? Search for pictures of medieval armor and even get some library books (ones with pictures are recommended) on knights and medieval combat. Don't have the time? Wikipedia often has most of the answers and is generally reliable.

Be sure to practice making items regularly so you don't get out of practice. If you want to be good, you'll have to work a lot on the side. Try setting goals such as 'make an item every week and a sprite every two weeks' and be sure to keep practicing. Even without any guidebooks or help, you can become a good digital artist just by trying and constantly working on harder and more advanced projects.

When previous methods of trying to do something doesn't work, don't be afraid to try a new method! There are many ways to get to the end result of a resource item, even ways beyond your monitor. Try visualizing your item or resource first by searching for images or existing items. Drawing the item or resource out on large graph paper (1inx1in squares or 3cmx3cm squares) or even making the item using modeling clay or craft materials will allow you to get a rough draft done before making it (many professional prop makers use several stages of 'mock-ups' before making the real item).


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