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May 29, 2024, 06:36:54 AM

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oahda
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« Reply #720 on: April 28, 2022, 09:33:56 AM »

Did you feel the same way about the eyes back when I was just showing a grey person without the full character designs?

Interesting! I had to go back to look, but yeah to me the eyes felt more normal then. Even moreso when they were still capsules. Maybe it's a color thing? Have you tried white with black/colored pupils?

For what it's worth, I don't feel that strongly about it one way or another. I see it as just a striking (neutral/positive) design choice.

Ohhhhh, hmm, this is more complicated than I thought haha. I see now you said it in your previous reply already but I must've overlooked it: so the white dots are just meant as highlights/reflections and there wasn't supposed to be distinct pupils versus "whites" at all. Just beady eyes. It's so interesting that that's how you interpreted them! Now I'm really second guessing myself lol
« Last Edit: April 29, 2022, 04:06:33 AM by Prinsessa » Logged

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« Reply #721 on: April 28, 2022, 11:54:00 AM »

Oh wow that totally changes things! That sounds better than how I interpreted it. I definitely see those reflections as pupils in the still shots, but maybe I wouldn't if they weren't as sharp/bright?

Also, if there are no pupils, how do you plan to show eye movement?
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« Reply #722 on: April 28, 2022, 06:16:46 PM »

I've been checking in here occasionally but haven't commented for a while. It's great to see so much progress on the character model stuff!

I must admit that I also thought the white dots were pupils, and even knowing they're highlights I have quite a hard time trying to see them as such. Perhaps it's because they're quite centralised within the eyes? Something like this would read better as a highlight to me:



There are games that do this kind of all-black-eyes style (e.g. World to the West) so I definitely think it can work here. Perhaps given your painterly art style it'll work even better than trying to display eyes with a lot of detail.
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oahda
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« Reply #723 on: April 29, 2022, 03:19:28 AM »

I think you're both right! Let's see…

Also, if there are no pupils, how do you plan to show eye movement?

Very literally!



Here also with smaller highlights as per Ishi's suggestion~ I know they should probably move a little too but I threw this together very quickly just for this response haha

Also wondered about adding just a bit of depth to the eyes with a gradient like this:



But I think side by side I prefer full black, somehow it actually looks less creepy and lifeless.
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« Reply #724 on: April 29, 2022, 08:34:42 AM »

maybe you could do some environment mapping instead of the highlight or make the hightlight bigger? I think both looks fine, but I think the small highlight is what makes it look less friendly. I guess full black eyes in humans is a bit weird anyway, but weird is good.
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« Reply #725 on: April 29, 2022, 09:40:40 AM »

These look great! De-centralizing the highlights was an excellent suggestion.
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« Reply #726 on: April 29, 2022, 11:18:04 AM »

Yay! Here are bigger but still decentralised highlights for you:



Slight tinge of colour too since the lighting in the actual game is purplish. Which size is better?

Environment mapping is a cool idea but between watercoloury shader mush and the fact that you won't generally be right up in people's faces I'm not sure you'd even be able to see that Blink

Thanks so much for the continued feedback, everyone, it's super helpful! <3
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« Reply #727 on: April 29, 2022, 03:08:17 PM »

I like the big highlights, and I really like how the eye movement animates!
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« Reply #728 on: May 02, 2022, 06:26:55 AM »

Agreed with Ishi. The bigger looks better to me.  Hand Thumbs Up Right
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« Reply #729 on: May 03, 2022, 03:37:40 PM »

54

Atwa

I'm not done with the model, but I reached a point where I was just poking aimlessly at it, so it's time to move on.



Finally gave the character a proper name as well. Anglicised from Ảhdo.

Lessons

Despite the name this update isn't really about this specific person, but about how they represent, I suppose, the current culmination of the setup I've been posting about over the last few numbered devlog entries and in between.

There isn't a lot to add today really. Besides modelling I've now also unwrapped the base mesh as well as some clothes and partially textured everything as you've seen. Won't have to unwrap the face for the next character, and I can borrow and rework the painting I did too. Also found another thing I had to fix in the 3D import code and wrote my first lines of C++ in many months Tongue

And of course I've received a lot of helpful comments from you all, so many thanks again!!

Conclusions

I'm pretty happy with how it turned out in the end, even if it took a long time. Each new character will be faster to do as I build up a library of assets to flip. The art style feels suitable for the game and I think it looks cool with the watercolour shader too. As always there are specific angles and distances where it can get a little wonky but I wanna try and avoid fussing over it too much for the time being.

Next

It's tempting to redo the player character right away but the old one will suffice for now. I think I'll prioritise new NPC ones. If sitting down to try and work on another person proves to be productive I might do so, but if not I think I might go back to coding for a bit. Try and get some stuff out of the most recent Unity prototype and into the real game. Fix some workflow annoyances. We shall see!

EDIT:

I figured it might actually be fun to have some sort of profile on each character as their in-game look is established in the future, starting with this one, so despite previous introductions here's just a quick description:

About

This is the "coordinator" character I've mentioned before. Sort of like a mayor but more like a position of responsibility rather than power. Doesn't really decide how to run the town, just makes sure things are working out according to communal plans. Lots to do with produce, imports, exports, keeping track of deliveries, making sure there's food and water.

Thus knows most everyone quite well and gets about the town during the timeline so makes a useful friend in the beginning of the game as you start figuring things out together, starting with Atwa's account of events as roughed out in the recent prototype.



Has a belt full of keys and will be walking around with notebook and pen in hand to stay on top of things.

« Last Edit: May 04, 2022, 01:23:11 AM by Prinsessa » Logged

JobLeonard
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« Reply #730 on: May 03, 2022, 11:16:19 PM »

Quote
Finally gave the character a proper name as well. Anglicised from Ảhdo.
I don't get any results if I search for "Ảhdo", which language is that from? My first association was Adjoa but I somehow doubt that she's Ghanaian Tongue

Anyway, the result looks great, and the process was fun to follow!

Dare I ask how many more characters there are to go?
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oahda
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« Reply #731 on: May 04, 2022, 01:09:01 AM »

Anyway, the result looks great, and the process was fun to follow!

Thank you!!

I don't get any results if I search for "Ảhdo", which language is that from?

Custom, so you wouldn't Cheesy Thence also name of game and town. Think I've settled on Oas for player character now too.

Dare I ask how many more characters there are to go?

There are currently over thirty in my list Shocked And I can't really say any one is more important to prioritise since the whole point is to make them mingle throughout the timeline, especially on the square. Lots of work ahead! But I think I set a good baseline with Atwa by roughing out the shapes of the clothes without going into much detail. Will try to do the same for the others to begin with.
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« Reply #732 on: May 09, 2022, 10:08:41 PM »

For the highlights reading as pupils, I don't think that's something to avoid necessarily. I lean into it a bit for the SPSD aliens for instance and I think it looks good, so it's really more of a creative choice than anything imo:



In any case, I think Atwa looks great already! Looking forward to more designs ^^
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« Reply #733 on: May 10, 2022, 05:33:40 AM »





Really cool to see the textured character with proper post processing in engine, good job!
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« Reply #734 on: May 19, 2022, 09:05:07 AM »

Nice to see new posts from you! Very nice artistic touch to Atwa character but also to overall look. Mostly palette and shading. Can't remind of another game with similar look.
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oahda
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« Reply #735 on: May 21, 2022, 09:11:01 AM »

Thank you all <3

For the highlights reading as pupils, I don't think that's something to avoid necessarily. I lean into it a bit for the SPSD aliens for instance and I think it looks good, so it's really more of a creative choice than anything imo:

Oh, these look so good!! Kiss Definitely works IMO too
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« Reply #736 on: May 21, 2022, 02:07:55 PM »

55

Culture

Something infernal is in the air! Who, Me? I come back to the forums after weeks away, and one thread shows burning mechanics and another a cosy fireplace. And here I am to discuss flames as well.



Some fire I made some time ago. Might use a similar technique for this game.

I haven't really worked on the game per se since last, but coming up with names for characters I got inspired to get back into working more on the language stuff, which informed new ideas about the culture, and in turn some things for the actual game.

So how about some lore story time in the interim? Smiley

Fire

Game plays out in a seaside town. But a deeper history permeates the cultural sphere of the area. The mountainous backdrop of the setting is the link to the original homelands, where volcanic soil offered fertile ground for settlements, making the fiery craters kind of a big deal, also for being, well, dangerous.

Maybe eruptions are precisely why some people moved away. But they took their fire, and their reverence for it, with them. And the new settlement remains built around a central hot spot.



Hopefully I can show this shrine with an actual fire lit soon enough.

The same word, mee refers both to fire and to the centre or core of something, such as this town square. In the home this would be the hearth, in the middle of a combined kitchen and living room. Where it’s not necessary or practical to have a literal fireplace, a symbolic mee can be seen, such as a fountain, a flowerbed, or a chandelier.

Water

Of course in the new location of our previously rocky friends the sea is also a big deal.



Updated 3D blockout of Appa with fancy filters to mask the incompleteness. The reality is far more colourful!

The town, like the game, is named for this, ảo meaning salt or sea, and Appa (Ảhba) being a derivative thereof. It also refers to kelp and other edible seaweed, which are cultivated and harvested here.

Of course besides all the stuff powered by naturally flowing water, this has also led to a nautical way of life for many residents. Ships and other boats. That lighthouse where our main character lives, itself a kind of mee on the water.

Anchors

Sailing around on them ships, occasionally finding another spot in the area to live on, the expression "to drop anchor" came to also mean "to settle down". In a fusion of the extended senses of "devoting oneself to something" and "settling on an agreement", the word ảdla today refers to the task of our good friend from the previous devlog update, the town coordinator, Atwa. Settling agreements. Making deals. Coordinating people's devotions.



Atwa, Ảhdo, literally means anchor. There is no difference between titles and names.

Thus people in town who are able to contribute something to the community go through the coordinator to figure out how it can best benefit everyone. Again our main character as we know has settled, or cast their anchor, in the lighthouse, helping shippers to safely do the same in the literal, original sense. Cheesy

Steam

If you're not heading to sea, perhaps you're going back deeper into the hilly mainland. As old meets new so does fire meet water as you hop on a train cart pulled by a locomotive with a steam engine (both the same word: dodsa).



Another spiced up image of the 3D blockout. Can't wait to design a proper train!

Ceremonies

Another collision of the two times and places in history greets us early in the game as we see the funeral of one of the characters in the first witness account from none other than Atwa. Once again the big mee on the square is involved, lit up in the evening as attendees of the rite bid their farewells. A torch is lit from the bonfire and the boat holding the honoured is set ablaze and allowed to drift to sea while the same is done to paper lanterns that accompany the vessel into the night.



Have some happy whales instead of an actual funeral. There will be more houses so not quite as clear a view.

The bonfire is also used on less unfortunate occasions, or even just as a nice place to gather on a cold winter's day. Depending on the purpose, substances are used to colour the fire and the smoke in different ways. When there is no fire, it may be decorated as a flower bed, again with meaningful variations. It may also serve as something of a wishing well but with the offerings consumed by flames, another leftover from the volcano days.

We can also see these dualities represented in Appa's emblem, of water and fire, wet and dry, dark and light, night and day. It goes on. The sun rising between the ancestral mountains and setting on the horizon of the new home by the sea. Old and new~ Nothing we haven't seen a million times over in the real world, and perhaps cheesy, but I like this sort of stuff! Gomez



Anyhow, that's enough filler content! Cheesy See you again!

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« Reply #737 on: May 23, 2022, 02:01:08 AM »

Great devlog as always, it was nice to get some insight on your story background, the world and its inhabitants. The stylized fire looks great, I'm looking forward to see it with your post processing in the game!
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« Reply #738 on: May 23, 2022, 11:48:46 AM »

I love the world-building and lore in this update. I get really excited when I see the scale of some of these blockouts. When I see how great the more finalized assets look, my anticipation only goes up when I imagine how it will all look in that style. I'll second you on really wanting to see that train, haha. Great update!

p.s. I like that fire a lot, think it will blend well with the rest of the world.
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« Reply #739 on: May 23, 2022, 01:51:50 PM »

Nice update as always! Fire is very nice (also from artistic point of view, it quite matches the look of Ao). What's needed is maybe more dynamic lightning on the ground, cast from fire.

Looking forward to see the shrine with actual fire. Kiss
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