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What did you find very usefull in this thread.

The examples
Ship sizes
Ferrus guide
BSF guide
Infestation guide
depth guide
medonca's spriting guide
avan's colouring guide
Tip and tricks
Light and shade guide

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Author Topic: A spriter's first toolbox  (Read 92058 times)

TheHappyFace

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added Rybread & The Counter sprites from the independent mining faction
and okim's ironclads

changed poll

if you want sprites to be added to the examples please comment or pm me.

i hope me and other spriters could learn from your vote!
« Last Edit: August 20, 2012, 04:08:18 AM by TheHappyFace »
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Sproginator

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Has this been stickied yet?
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A person who's never made a mistake, never tried anything new
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TheHappyFace

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Has this been stickied yet?

is that a compliment or a question? xD
whatever it is thank you and no it hasen't
thats why i keep posting when i update it so it doesnt get lost
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Upgradecap

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/vote for sticky.
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TheHappyFace

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/vote for sticky.  ;)
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/vote for sticky
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A person who's never made a mistake, never tried anything new
- Albert Einstein

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Archduke Astro

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The Happy Face, I've decided to sticky this thread. It's been a broad compendium of informative examples & guides on spriting -- most helpful for reference to have so much linked here. Hopefully it will continue to prosper.

The more topical content you guys can generate here, the better. Moderators will help keep an eye on it to remove off-topic posting, or lend other help as needed.

One thread to beam up! Energize...
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Psiyon

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Here are the tutorials I've made a while back:


My method for turning 3D models to sprites: http://fractalsoftworks.com/forum/index.php?topic=654.0

Hardcore kitbashing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Wr3O4yPxZg

Result:

More ships with this method: http://fractalsoftworks.com/forum/index.php?topic=3999.0
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TheHappyFace

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Thank you psiyon
your kitbashing is amazing and the vid is really helpfull.  ;D

ill add everything when i finally figure out how i am going to place it into my post without exceeding the maximum amount....

for now i'll place it here

Psiyon's guide for transforming 3D models into 2D sprites
Spoiler
This tutorial is for those of you who want to get your 3D models into Starfarer (Or any other 2D game). The software I use is 3ds Max for rendering, and Photoshop for post-processing the completed renders. You can render your ships out in other software, like Blender, and you can also use other image editing programs besides Photoshop. This tutorial is focused on these two pieces of software, however, the concepts would apply to any other program.

Part one (video): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0WVhI7BgKs

Render scene file: http://www.mediafire.com/?e0qx48x48pck7kf

(Alex, any chance of a forum update so we can embed youtube videos into posts? It would make things a bit more convenient.)

Part 2:

I tried a video version of this, but in the end, it would have just wound up being way too long and drawn out. A text and picture version will work better and allow you to work at your own pace, instead of pausing every five seconds to see what I'm doing.

I'll be using a different render than the one I used in the video, because I made that one when doing the ill-fated video version.
(Here's how it turned out, if you're curious:

)

Let's begin.

First, start by making a new document, and copying both the render and its Ambient Occlusion pass into it, each as a separate layer.

Because the ship we're making is symmetrical in shape, we're going to make sure it's symmetrical in every other aspect as well. Select half of the ship, from right down the middle.



Copy and paste that halved segment of the ship. It should now appear on a new layer. Go back to your base layer, and select the other half of the ship. Delete it. Now, you'll be left with two halves of the same ship, each on a different layer. Select one of the layers, and transform them horizontally. (Edit>Transform>Flip Horizontal). Align the two halves so they fit together.



Finally, merge the two layers into one.

Then, repeat those steps for the ambient occlusion pass. Make sure that it fits over the base layer nicely before merging. Once done, set the AO layer mode to Multiply.



Now that we're set up, we can start doing the editing that matters. Duplicate the base layer, and then go to filter>sharpen>sharpen. The filter might be a little powerful, so adjust the new layer's opacity as needed.



Duplicate the base layer again, and move it underneath the Sharpen Layer. Go to Image>Adjustments>Brightness/Contrast. In this case, I'm actually going to decrease the contrast, however, in most cases, you'll find that increasing it will look better. It all depends on what render settings you used, as well as the model's texture. Make sure the contrast layer's opacity is left at 100%, as it will soon become our base layer.



Next, I'll duplicate the base layer one last time, and move the new layer above the Sharpen layer. On our new layer, we'll go to filter>filter gallery, and then under brush strokes, choose the Accented Edges filter. Set all properties to the lowest they go.



Click OK. Set the layer mode of this new layer to Soft Light, and drop the opacity into the 15%-40% range. This layer helps make the sprite a bit darker, and also helps add a little detail into the render.




Now, disable the visibility on your base layer. We won't be needing it anymore, and its presence will only make the edges of our sprite sharper and uglier.

This is where the fun begins. Create a new blank layer, and name it Paint-Over. We're now going to try to smooth out any rough parts on our sprite.

The general idea with this step is to find grainy and blended areas of color, and make them more uniform, like a sprite usually is. In other words, we want harder and sharper color transitions, instead of smooth gradients and turbulence.

With the eyedropper tool (hotkey I), find a problem area. Sample one of the colors in that area, and begin to paint it over. Make sure you're using the pencil tool for this (Click and hold over the brush tool to see other brush options). Also make note that you only need to do it to one side of the ship (if it's symmetrical). In the end, you can just duplicate your paint over layer (and the others to come), and it'll save you 50% of the work.



As you can see in the picture, the right side looks more uniform than the other side. While it might not necessarily look better, it provides a good foundation for our next step: detailing.

Create a new layer, and set its mode to multiply. At this point, we stop preparing the ship for making it look good--here, we actually make it look like a sprite. Set the brush width to 1px (still using the pencil tool), and select shades of grey--usually a shade right in the middle of black and white works well for this. It depends on how much you want your ship to "pop". If your detailing is too dark, the ship will look silly, and if it's too light, then it will also look silly. Experiment to see what works best.

When it comes to detailing, I find that outlining distinct parts of the ship is a good place to begin.



Again, you only need to work on one half of the ship, we can duplicate and flip it later.

The next step is to add smaller details--like hull plating, little dots and squares, etc.



Finally, if you're satisfied with the result, we duplicate both the paint-over and detail layer. Flip the copies horizontally, and align them properly.




The last step is adding lights, if you want them. Create a new layer, and set its mode to linear dodge. Move it above the ambient occlusion layer. Choose a color that you want your lights to be, and add them wherever you want.

When you're done, duplicate that layer, set its mode to normal, and put it underneath the light layer. Go to filter>blur>Gaussian blur, and set the radius to about 0.5. Hit OK.




Do any last-minute touch-ups you need, and then you're done! Export it as a .png file with a transparent background.






I hope you found this tutorial helpful. And, an offer: if anyone wants their model rendered off by me, don't hesitate to ask. As long as I don't get swamped with requests (which I doubt will happen) I'd be happy to render a ship here and there. I won't, however, do all the post work. That's your job :P
[close]

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Wr3O4yPxZg

Spoiler
[close]
« Last Edit: August 21, 2012, 04:06:33 AM by TheHappyFace »
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mendonca

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A couple of brief descriptions of the processes I have used for a couple of my sprites:

Building the Kraken - simple texturing using David's original sprites

Spriting the Boxer
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"I'm doing it, I'm making them purple! No one can stop me!"

TheHappyFace

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A couple of brief descriptions of the processes I have used for a couple of my sprites:

Building the Kraken - simple texturing using David's original sprites

Spriting the Boxer

thank you , those will certainly come in handy.
i'll add them as quick as possible.

edit: created guide for making simple shades and lights

edit2: still cant figure out how to solve my maximum amount of words problem....
« Last Edit: August 21, 2012, 04:08:55 AM by TheHappyFace »
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Sproginator

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A couple of brief descriptions of the processes I have used for a couple of my sprites:

Building the Kraken - simple texturing using David's original sprites

Spriting the Boxer

thank you , those will certainly come in handy.
i'll add them as quick as possible.

edit: created guide for making simple shades and lights

edit2: still cant figure out how to solve my maximum amount of words problem....
Screenshot the words, upload the screenshots, job done
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A person who's never made a mistake, never tried anything new
- Albert Einstein

As long as we don't quit, we haven't failed
- Jamie Fristrom (Programmer for Spiderman2 & Lead Developer for Energy Hook)

TheHappyFace

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A couple of brief descriptions of the processes I have used for a couple of my sprites:

Building the Kraken - simple texturing using David's original sprites

Spriting the Boxer

thank you , those will certainly come in handy.
i'll add them as quick as possible.

edit: created guide for making simple shades and lights

edit2: still cant figure out how to solve my maximum amount of words problem....
Screenshot the words, upload the screenshots, job done

thanks although this is a hell of a job to do with all turtorials especially the one you made which is text,picture,text,picture....
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Sproginator

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A couple of brief descriptions of the processes I have used for a couple of my sprites:

Building the Kraken - simple texturing using David's original sprites

Spriting the Boxer

thank you , those will certainly come in handy.
i'll add them as quick as possible.

edit: created guide for making simple shades and lights

edit2: still cant figure out how to solve my maximum amount of words problem....
Screenshot the words, upload the screenshots, job done

thanks although this is a hell of a job to do with all turtorials especially the one you made which is text,picture,text,picture....
Yep
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A person who's never made a mistake, never tried anything new
- Albert Einstein

As long as we don't quit, we haven't failed
- Jamie Fristrom (Programmer for Spiderman2 & Lead Developer for Energy Hook)

Avan

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I noticed you had a collection of samples growing, and I recently added (just this morning in fact) a large image with all the ships in my mod so far, which you can include: (its under the spoiler tag near the top) http://fractalsoftworks.com/forum/index.php?topic=977.0

I'd recommend using this link of the image (as opposed to re-uploading it), since it will be updated with time (in fact it will likely this weekend with the next update) and this way the copy here would stay up-to-date. Actually here it is anyways: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/3061400/shipchart.png (High/Mid/Low tech ships are mostly kitbashes with custom bits, while the Post-Collapse and Pre-Autofactory ships are all hand-drawn)
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