Author Topic: Technical art questions and discussions  (Read 72555 times)

LimpingFish

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Re: Technical art questions and discussions
« Reply #100 on: 15 Mar 2018, 22:54 »
I'm guessing there are small keyboards (aka piano) I can plug into my PC/laptop/what have you, and record music using different software. MIDI keyboards perhaps? Does anyone have suggestions for a simple keyboard setup?

This is the one that I use when I'm at my PC and I want to quickly get something down. It's small enough to fit on a crowded desk, and it does the job well enough. Plus, you can usually pick it up for less than it's RRP.

As for software, something like StageLight is a good (free) starting point.

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HanaIndiana

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Re: Technical art questions and discussions
« Reply #101 on: 16 Mar 2018, 16:01 »
Thanks LimpingFish! The Akaipro looks perfect, and I've never heard of Stagelight before, it seems pretty powerful. Even the "unlock" price isn't too bad.

"Next-level" animations
« Reply #102 on: 15 Jun 2018, 01:23 »
Hey folks,

Say hello to Linkattus, a brash adventurer that is about to rescue an imprisoned beautiful lady.


He lives in an entry for MAGS May, which I am currently upgrading with superior animations as a first step to creating a non-MAGS version.

So, Linkattus will have to:
  • reach for the soft soap bottle on the cabinet behind him,
  • take it,
  • turn facing downstage,
  • shake the bottle
  • remark that the bottle is empty
  • turn facing the cabinet
  • and then put it back.
I know the guy's a little short, but he intends to stand on his toes and stretch a little.

So, this has a technical (practical) and an artistic side.

For the technical side, both Linkattus and the surroundings are originally vector (.svg) drawings. They have been converted to .png for the AGS sprites import. The bottle is an object.
  • What would be a good program to do the animation in? I've done the walking cycles in Synfig, which can import .svg files in a broken kind of way that usually ruins the scaling of some body parts. Also, Synfig is fairly unstable and needs constant saving in order to guard against crashes. On the other hand, Synfig can work with vectors "natively", and it knows bones animation (you can attach a group of vector shapes to a "bone", and when you move or distort the bone, the vectors will follow suit). I'm not really happy with Synfig, but I don't know alternatives.
  • What do I need to do on the AGS side to pull this off? Note that the bottle is already standing there when Linkattus arrives. So Linkattus will probably need to be at a very exact position when the animation starts so his hands are exactly aligned when grabbing the bottle. Then, the bottle needs to "disappear" at the same time that a copy of the bottle that is part of the animation sequence shows up.
  • I think I will need to have the background available in the animation program in order to get the positioning just right. But the background must not be part of the animation images, or it might interfere with the graphics that AGS presents in realtime.

Watch Kathy Rain going to the sofa and taking a seat there. Kathy lives in a commercial AGS adventure (that is very worthwhile, BTW.). I assume that AGS turns her, then she uses a standard walkcycle animation which she fluidly changes to a "sitting down" animation on arriving at the sofa. (The jerkiness in the GIF is due to its low frame rate; there is no jerkiness whatsoever in the live game).  Note that Kathy is in seamless action throughout the sequence.



So there must be a way of doing these kinds of animations.
« Last Edit: 15 Jun 2018, 01:43 by fernewelten »

Mandle

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Re: Technical art questions and discussions
« Reply #103 on: 15 Jun 2018, 04:20 »
One hint I would give is to figure out what your largest sprite's height and width will be and then make all your sprites this size whether they need to be or not.

If you have sprites of different sizes in the same view the character will jump around as AGS recenters each frame.

Sorry if this is obvious info.

VampireWombat

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Re: Technical art questions and discussions
« Reply #104 on: 15 Jun 2018, 20:23 »
I made graphics using Inkscape last month and animated them with Spriter pro. The free version probably can do what you want.
It exports either as individual pngs or a sheet. I don't think it supports svgs, so you'd have to make pngs of the different body parts.
It supports guide images and uses bones.
I know nothing about using Synfig so I don't know how the two compare. But Spriter is at least stable from what I've seen so far.
As for the AGS side... One way you could do it is that when he grabs the bottle it changes views to be an animation. You would need to line him up with the bottle properly, but that shouldn't be too hard. You'll probably need to split the animations up since you want him to talk after shaking it.
« Last Edit: 15 Jun 2018, 20:38 by VampireWombat »