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TIGSource ForumsDeveloperArt (Moderator: JWK5)Space Crusade and Nostalgia
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Author Topic: Space Crusade and Nostalgia  (Read 15619 times)
happymonster
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« on: September 01, 2013, 08:22:16 AM »

Many many years ago I had an Atari ST and used to like playing Space Crusade on there, apart from one thing.. I hated the completely random nature of everything. I wanted something more like Laser Squad and with that viewpoint rather than the completely top-down view in Space Crusade.

So at that time I made some 16 x 16 sprites for all the characters in the game (in 8 directions and 16 colours) and was very proud of them (though looking back I imagine they would look pretty poor today). These sprites have been long since lost, but I thought I'd have a go as an exercise at doing a few more with the same 16 x 16 size and 16 colour limitations. Just to see how I'd do it now.. Smiley

The difficulty is that there are greys, blues, reds, greens and yellows used for the armours and skin tones of the marines, orks, etc.. in the game. This doesn't leave many shades for each hue. I've tried to use black as both the shadow colour and apply as a kind of partial outline away from the light source of top-left. I've also tried to make the various parts of the sprites (hand, gun, feet) stand out in this way as I do have a tendency to always over-detail.

Does it work so far? Here are an ultramarine commander and an ultramarine trooper:



10 colour used so far. I need to add reds, greens and probably make those orange/browns more yellowish for the final palette.
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Ant
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« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2013, 08:33:21 AM »

Oh god I loved that game on the Amiga.

They look real nice so far with good readability considering their size, though I think you'd be better off making a full screen mockup to know for sure. Hand Thumbs Up Right
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happymonster
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« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2013, 12:18:03 PM »

Right, sorted out the colours, added Imperial Fists and Blood Angels as well as a Chaos Marine. Had to sacrifice the darkest blue for a skin colour, but still looks good!

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happymonster
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« Reply #3 on: September 02, 2013, 12:04:48 PM »

Improved the Chaos Marine (cheated a little and added 1 pixel in height for the horns, so 16 x 17 in total).
Tweaked colours and sacrificed the lightest green for an extra dark grey for the floor and walls.
Added Ork (though still need to work on it).



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happymonster
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« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2013, 09:46:01 AM »

It sounds strange to say this but in some ways it was easier when doing art on the Atari ST or Amiga. On the ST you knew that you only had 16 colours to play with (baring any palette change tricks which seem very rare in games due to the CPU cost). Similarly on the Amiga (ECS/OCS) you knew you had 32 colours in-game (and maybe a graduated background with the help of the Copper chip).

However on PC's now there are no restrictions at all on the image size or number of colours.  So it would be easy to think that I could just add a few more colours when I'm struggling with only 16 to play with, or use 32 colours like an Amiga version would have been like. And that's right, it would make it easier and probably look better!

But, it wouldn't help stretch yourself against limitations, which is what is fun about doing these.. Smiley
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happymonster
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« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2013, 10:13:30 AM »

I've tweaked the colours a bit more as I've added new sprites. I've removed the orange skin colour as I don't think I could justify it just for the human faces. Instead I've tweaked the browns/reds and using one of those yellow-brown's for the faces.

I've had to remove the darkest blue as I need a pink/purple for the genestealers. It might be a bit too purple for the human faces.

Added a gretchin and trying to keep roughly the same design as the original miniature.

Also tried to add a little more shading to improve the faces and make them look more like an excellent painted miniature with shading and depth rather than a flat coloured one.

The colours are all still very saturated, but I think that's keeping with the original game? I might have to desaturate them a bit..

No doubt more tweaking and working on them will continue. Smiley

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surt
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« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2013, 11:55:56 AM »

Great stuff. Reminds me of those tiny X-COM sprites you did ages ago (X-COM vs Space Marines?  Tongue).
Would love to see a Laser Squad-ish game or roguelike with this kind of arts (minus the Games Workshop IP).
« Last Edit: September 04, 2013, 12:01:13 PM by surt » Logged

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happymonster
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« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2013, 01:44:27 PM »

Thanks! Smiley

So would I.. sadly I don't seem to have the motivation or concentration to work on big projects anymore like I did when I was younger. Still, I enjoy tinkering with bits of art or programming here and there. Smiley
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tjkopena
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« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2013, 01:55:05 PM »

As a big 40k fan, these little guys look super awesome.  Just in time for the new Space Marines codex coming out this weekend!
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happymonster
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« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2013, 02:16:20 PM »

Cheers Smiley

I'm working on a couple of genestealer versions at the moment  Wink
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happymonster
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« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2013, 11:40:05 PM »

Ok, I've done a new Gretchin variant which I quite like. I've also done two Genestealer sprites. The more upright one is probably the most faithful, but I prefer the more dynamic bent over pose of the other sprite personally. What do you think?

I've used a purple for the faces but I might have to change this to grey rather than use one colour just for a few places. It's a shame as purple faces are a big part of the Genestealer designs I've seen. Will have to see..


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« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2013, 12:11:23 AM »

They look really good. I think they'd look really great in a space version of Slay.

I don't see a problem keeping the purple. I always remember Chaos Marines using dark colours, so maybe you just have a second one using the purple, then it doesn't feel like a waste Wink

Are you going to make a terminator sprite too? Smiley

Now if I could only motivate myself to code...
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tjkopena
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« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2013, 12:30:32 AM »

The hunched over Genestealer is definitely way better.  The other one is maybe more faithful to very early Genestealers and Hybrids, but I think the hunched over one is actually much more identifiable as the modern Genestealer models, in addition to just being a better sprite.  Much more menacing & readable as a close combat enemy.  Maybe slim the shoulders just a tad so it reads a bit less of bulky and a bit more of insanely fast?

It's definitely worth burning a color to make the Genestealer face purple.  Anything else is just going to lose a ton of recognizability.

Awesome stuff.
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« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2013, 01:50:52 AM »

The 2nd genestealer looks best. But I do miss the claws, they look more like big hands on your sprite. I own the pysical board game and the genestealers have very menacing claws. They are also portrayed like this on the box art: http://inakadakka.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/genestealer.gif so your color scheme is right.

These are the actual miniatures that came with the game: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_804hr-DG6uc/S-eYXWscD7I/AAAAAAAAAxA/06FhB4EeB3s/s400/Genestealer_Sample.jpg original they are not painted and dark purple.
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« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2013, 04:54:56 AM »

Tried giving it the rest of its arms but just got confused.
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« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2013, 06:20:41 AM »

These are the actual miniatures that came with the game: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_804hr-DG6uc/S-eYXWscD7I/AAAAAAAAAxA/06FhB4EeB3s/s400/Genestealer_Sample.jpg original they are not painted and dark purple.

One of the bits of 40k background is that the Tyranid faction, which the Genestealers are part of, is broken up into hive fleets comprising different strains, Hive Fleets Behemoth, Leviathan, and Kraken being the main ones.  Each of them has their own associated color scheme.  Space Crusade predates a lot of that fluff and was retconned into it as the Tyranid faction developed---AFAIK it's not really settled which, if any, hive fleet they're supposed to be from---but that's the game world support for all the different colors of Genestealers floating around.
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« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2013, 07:41:44 AM »

These are the actual miniatures that came with the game: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_804hr-DG6uc/S-eYXWscD7I/AAAAAAAAAxA/06FhB4EeB3s/s400/Genestealer_Sample.jpg original they are not painted and dark purple.

One of the bits of 40k background is that the Tyranid faction, which the Genestealers are part of, is broken up into hive fleets comprising different strains, Hive Fleets Behemoth, Leviathan, and Kraken being the main ones.  Each of them has their own associated color scheme.  Space Crusade predates a lot of that fluff and was retconned into it as the Tyranid faction developed---AFAIK it's not really settled which, if any, hive fleet they're supposed to be from---but that's the game world support for all the different colors of Genestealers floating around.
For Warhammer 40k, yes. But I was specifically talking about space-crusade, the board-game. Not Warhammer 40k, the board-game. Space-crusade does not really deal with all the lore and stuff and just puts all the "none-spacemarines" on the "evil-side" in 1 big pool.
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« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2013, 12:21:23 PM »

Thanks for the useful info!

Do any of these versions of the genestealer look better? Smiley

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« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2013, 12:00:47 AM »

I do like the 2nd version better, because it reminds me more of the board game. But I do think people could mistake the claws for 3 barreled miniguns now =)
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« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2013, 10:28:54 AM »

Yes, that's the problem with doing claws at that angle!!
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