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  • Noob needs help with Character size

    by Duggy · Tuesday, 10. November 2015, 03:51 h ~ 2 years ago
    Hi guys, I have created a background, and got it up in Visionaire. I'm using 1280 x 720, and the image is 3 x 1280 panels wide.
    I'm creating some Character art in ArtRage on my Wacom tablet, but not sure what size or settings to use?
    Does this matter, or I can adjust in Visionaire? Do I work out some kind of scale based on my background? Any help would appreciated! And remember, talk slowly - I'm new at this!
    Duggy
  • by HelixAbyss · Tuesday, 10. November 2015, 06:55 h ~ 2 years ago
    You can use waypoints (under a scene's way system) to change the scale of a character, it goes from 0% to 200%. I make my characters large enough that 100% size is appropriate for most scenes, but you can scale them up/down in Visionaire!
    HelixAbyss
  • by AFRLme · Tuesday, 10. November 2015, 09:50 h ~ 2 years ago
    The general idea for characters is to make them 50% the height (give or take - because not everyone is the same height) of the default game resolution you set in the game tab in Visionaire Studio. You can then scale the character up & down in-game by assigning character scale values to the waypoints (paths) in the way system tab for each scene.

    However you could make the characters as large or small as you like & scale them up or down with Visionaire Studio, but you should take into account that artifacts (discrepancies in your images) may occur & also that the larger your character is, the more VRAM it's going to require to load / use it which is not good in terms of optimization (larger the size of images / animations / game resolution, the more powerful the machine will be needed to run said game).
    AFRLme
  • by Duggy · Wednesday, 11. November 2015, 01:44 h ~ 2 years ago
    Great, thanks for the tips guys!

    So making them as a standard size of 360 high, 180 wide should do - then I can adjust in Visionaire as needed?

    Is there a preferred image file type to save as? .png ok?

    I watched a video on the waypoint stuff, so I see the ability to have a character scale in-game to create pseudo-3d rooms. That should be handy and looks pretty easy to use.

    Just going to start with static images for the characters until I get a basic scene playable, then attempt to learn how to animate. Man, none of this was so damn accessible when I was a kid, it's awesome.

    Some more random noob questions if you have the time:

    I've read 30 different recommendation pages for indie starter software. Being Visionaire users, what have you found works well with your Visionaire games?

    I am liking ArtRage 3, but its my first drawing program outside of MS Paint.
    I also have a bit of experience with FruityLoops, and will be using that for sound assets.

    - Is ArtRage good? I also have Inkscape and Autodesk Sketchbook Exress.

    - What do I use for animation? Flash?

    - Is Adobe's subsciption suite worth it? Necessary?

    - I'm working off the Fantasy Quest Visionaire youtube tutorial series to get this first room up. Any other great guides / tutorials you can point me to?

    I am obviously a complete beginner, so trying to balance user friendly-ness with actually learning useful stuff to help me going forward.

    Cheers!
    Duggy
  • by HelixAbyss · Wednesday, 11. November 2015, 02:23 h ~ 2 years ago
    For image file type, webp is the recommended one to use. I converted all of mine over and, without quality loss, the file sizes went down a considerable amount.

    I use PaintToolSAI for artwork and anime studio for animation. I've seen people use flash and it looks so much better!

    This channel right here is where I learned all of the important stuff for using Visionaire: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0dmw0Z1uP7TbcQYj...

    Though I'm not new to art/animation, I am fairly new to using Visionaire so I shall back off now so the more experienced people can give more useful advice grin
    HelixAbyss
  • by AFRLme · Wednesday, 11. November 2015, 02:26 h ~ 2 years ago
    I'm not an artist nor am I an animator but I guess it all boils to what you find most comfy to use. For animation / graphics (in general) you could use Art Rage, Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash etc. You could even use sprite part animation tools such as Spine, Spriter or Anime Studio Pro (tip: Spine animation support should be included in the next update of Visionaire Studio).

    Adobe Flash I think sort of works like sprite part animation, as in: you can split animation into different layers, swap them out, morph them & control the animations through key frame events in a time-line (I think).

    As for the format... PNG is fine, but I do recommend webp for the final image / animation formats used in game, because...

    A. The file sizes are much smaller than PNG which is a lossless image format.

    B. It's hard to tell the difference between the PNG & webp formats when you export the webp files out at quality option 10 - highest quality available for lossy option. The next option is lossless, but file size is larger.

    C. Because of the smaller file-sizes. the images & animations will load faster, thus the actual requirements to run your game are reduced - good news for people using shitty machines. - Optimization.wink

    P.S: check the wiki. Under documentation is a link to an index page of tutorial links. I linked all of the currently available VS tutorial related videos on it. Also check out the manual under documentation. It is far from complete & I've been too busy to update it. On the manual index page you will find a section that includes links to various tips, one of them is about optimization & the other is about recommended image formats & encoding methods. On the recommended image format page is the link to a really nice freeware batch converter which allows you to convert single, multiple files & entire folders of images to webp & just about any other image format you can think of. I really recommend downloading it.
    AFRLme
  • by Duggy · Wednesday, 11. November 2015, 05:21 h ~ 2 years ago
    Thanks HelixAbyss! This video series is looking to be exactly what I was after.
    You wouldn't happen to be able to point me to some good tutorials on animation?
    I can sketch a character, and paint him an artrage. I'm starting to learn how to use layers and my wacom tablet.
    I have a feeling I should be drawing parts that will move on different layers - ie legs, arms, etc.
    Apart from maybe 3 hours of artrage and 20 minutes of inkscape, the most knowledge I have is drawing dicks on things in MSPaint. razz

    I'll definitely investigate and switch to webp format as recommended!
    Ill check out Spine as well since it is going to be integrated.
    Time to start working through the manual and tutorials - cheers AFRLme!
    Duggy
  • by HelixAbyss · Thursday, 12. November 2015, 00:41 h ~ 2 years ago
    Unfortunately all of the videos,etc that I learned from are all over the place (and most of it was a lot of trial and error) so I can't recommend any good tutorials, but yes you will want to make sure each moving part is separate. Definitely be using different layers, I have a color layer and an outline layer for each separate part of the character (though I do merge the outline with the color before exporting for animation, it just makes it easier to correct mistakes, etc if they are separate to begin with). I'll attach a screenshot so you can get an idea of how many layers I use. In my workspace I have: head, right arm, left arm, body, right leg, left leg all in separate folders and then within there split them up further, mostly looking at where the joints are. So in arm I have upper arm, lower arm, and hand.

    Whichever animation software you end up using, just go through the tutorials associated with it, they'll get you started!
    HelixAbyss
  • by tristan-kang · Thursday, 12. November 2015, 20:16 h ~ 2 years ago
    Damn I should change all my images' format into webp after I read this.

    At least I think it's worth it. But I also need to change all image path registered in VS...

    Well, the time will solve it!
    tristan-kang
  • by AFRLme · Thursday, 12. November 2015, 20:58 h ~ 2 years ago
    haha... you can change them all in one simple search & replace all in Sublime Text. It does require opening up your ved file & editing the xml data - it's very easy to mess something up which is why we don't advise anyone to directly modify the ved through the code itself.

    But anyway, yeah...

    1. download sublime text (evaluation version is fully unlocked & has no time limit - just displays a notification after every random amount of saves asking you to consider paying for a license. install.

    2. right click on your ved file & open it with sublime text.

    3. press ctrl + f (cmd + f) to open up search function. Type png & then press find all button.

    4. now type webp & then save the document.

    5. open it back up as normal & see if the images have been replaced with webp versions & that the ved is all in order.

    Before editing a ved file in Sublime Text I advise that you create a backup copy of it, as it's very easy to mess up the ved - accidental key presses or whatever & there will be 1000's of lines of XML data probably - too much to comb through manually.

    P.S: I recommend using XnConvert for webp conversion. Follow my encoding guide in the wiki for download link & how to set it up correctly. If you set it all up correctly then it should automatically create a webp version of each file, files in the folders you drag into the input window with the same name & in the same source location as the original file.
    AFRLme
  • by tristan-kang · Thursday, 12. November 2015, 21:35 h ~ 2 years ago
    I think it's safer to modify the path manually. I only have 7 rooms in my games + some interfaces.

    And some files, its webp format is heavier than png format. Strange somehow.

    I'm using photoshop CC + adobe webp plugin. I think it works perfectly for lossless webp format. I can set up automatic batch as action sequence, too.

    Well, I need to pay monthly for adobe programs. Better using it for money's sake + maximise its usefulness. grin
    tristan-kang
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