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Levels & Items Art

Discussion in 'Sonic 2 HD (Archive)' started by Vincent, Apr 22, 2008.

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  1. JcFerggy

    JcFerggy

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    Everyone is trying to do more realistic things with the art, but what Sonica just made is the style I think we should work with.
     
  2. Death of Rats

    Death of Rats

    -Sonic 2 HD- Zone Art Coordinator Member
  3. burpingcat

    burpingcat

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    the underside of the grass should be a lot more irregular on that piece. the top side of it looks pretty good, though.
     
  4. StereoTypicalPickle

    StereoTypicalPickle

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    Sonic 2 HD: Mockup... person... thingie.
  5. Vincent

    Vincent

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    I agree, it's really a great work from Sonica, which has officially became a Staff member due his great continued support and skills in HDizing.

    On that platform frame I'll only change the lower part, to reflect more the longer edges of grass and make the block art more like DoR has been doing.
     
  6. Death of Rats

    Death of Rats

    -Sonic 2 HD- Zone Art Coordinator Member
    Ok, I'm going to run down the problems with the floating platform.

    First, it doesn't use the same block design principles that the rest of the EHZ blocks use.

    Second, It's not symmetrical.

    like this:
    [​IMG]

    Third, the grass not just on this piece, but on every piece needs to follow the angles of the grass in the original art. This goes for the top and the bottom.

    Now, the method you've used is fine. I like the style of the grass and the shadows. But it needs to be just a tad bit more faithful to the original art. Now, this is mainly a concern for the rest of the tiles that we have yet to do. It's very important that the grass tiles correctly, and the easiest way to achieve that is to make sure the angles of the grass start and end in the same places on the dark and light sections of green (if you get what I'm saying). If not, I can show an example later when I have time.

    The symmetry is mainly a design principle in this block's case, but seeing how that symmetry is going to be throughout all of the level, it'd be a good idea to keep it consistent throughout all the art for EHZ, at least at this stage.

    Good job overall, but there's a lot of changes that you should make. If you would like, I can go into more detail (with examples) on all of them.

    I may not be working on art for a little while, but I can still do my functions as the Level Art Coordinator.
     
  7. Athelstone

    Athelstone

    Oldbie
    Excellent feedback DoR, thanks.
     
  8. SANiK

    SANiK

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    Let me be technical and offer my two cents on the design of the grass:

    [​IMG]
     
  9. SANiK, I love your "technical" explanations! :) It looks like Sonic is getting sucked apart piece by piece in the same way that bosses in RPGs often have elaborate "shattering" animations when you kill them.
     
  10. Death of Rats

    Death of Rats

    -Sonic 2 HD- Zone Art Coordinator Member
    Sonica asked me to show him what my comments meant with visual aids... here they are.

    This is the original 4x platform...

    [​IMG]

    And this is the way the grass should flow...

    [​IMG]

    And this is an overlay to show why..

    [​IMG]

    Ok, as you can see, the red lines are the devisions between the light and dark colors. The blue lines show where the original tiles are. The black lines show the way the grass is angled in the original art. The grass should follow the same angles in the HD version as in the regular version.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see here, the HD version we currently have does not do this.

    The reason for all of this is simple, we need the grass to tile correctly. And it doesn't matter if the floating platform doesn't really tile, we need to follow the same design philosophy throughout the whole of EHZ, or else things will look weird and out of place. If the platform was symetrical in the original, it needs to be so in the HD version. If the platform's grass goes along a certain angle in the original, it need to do so in the HD version. The big picture is just as important as the small details, and we need to look at that first.

    The blue lines are very important. We need the grass to be able to tile, so at the blue lines the grass needs to be exactly where it is on the original version. On both sides of that line. Again, this is more for the rest of the grass tiles, but again, the whole project needs to follow the same design philosophy.

    Keep in mind that these shapes are all things people have seen over and over again since the release of Sonic 2. Even if people don't see that we've followed through on being respectful to the original art, they'll recognize it subliminally. And that's where we need people to recognize it. We need people to think "hey, I'm playing a much prettier version of Sonic 2, but it's still familiar on every level".

    If this is confusing, just ask, and I can prepare more visual aids.
     
  11. Hivebrain

    Hivebrain

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    The only issue I have with the platform is that the shadow seems to be random and doesn't really match the grass.
     
  12. Death of Rats

    Death of Rats

    -Sonic 2 HD- Zone Art Coordinator Member
    I am not advocating us not improving upon the art, or even straying away from the original art where necessary. I listed off technical reasons why we need to be careful with the grass. I listed off design philosophy reasons to keep things similar.

    I am the Zone Art Coordinator for this project, and I'll be damned if I have people labeling me as some sort of purest when I have constantly said that the art for this project should experiment with new ideas and approaches to the art.

    In other words, don't undermined me. Allow me to do my damned job. Feel free to disagree with me. I have no problems with people doing that. But calling me an "originalpixelfag" in order to try to invalidate my criticism and direction on the art in this project is not only unnecessary, but also a disservice to the validity of your own criticism (it makes you seem immature). Seeing how I am the Zone Art Coordinator it is my responsibility to shape the direction the level art takes.
     
  13. Athelstone

    Athelstone

    Oldbie
    Well said DoR, and I agree with your well thought-out and detailed posts.

    The remastered level tiles, as you have explained, need to have cohesion: otherwise the end result is just going to look sloppy.
     
  14. DistroyA

    DistroyA

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    Keeping true to the original art is one thing, and that's commendable, as it keeps with the spirit of the original game. But the only qualm I have with the platform and any of the ground pieces is that they STILL look too perfectly shaped. There really should be more texture on the platform, for example, to make it look like it's made out of soil/clay/whichever. Personally, I'd concentrate on getting more texture on those earthy blocks first before thinking about how the grass and it's shadows should look.

    Here's an example of what I'm talking about; [​IMG]

    Take note of the shadows created by the soil and clay. That's how earth should look.

    Now look at the platform; [​IMG]

    It just looks plastic. I'm not trying to slag it off, I'm just stating fact. EHZ is set in a beach and/or earthy environment, not in Lego Land, and the original artwork looks flat as it is. Bang some texture in, and you've got yourself a winner. This idea should be considered not just for the platform, but also for the loops, and anything resembling earth in colour.

    Just thought I'd add my $0.02 there...
     
  15. Phos

    Phos

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    EHZ was never supposed to look like dirt.
     
  16. DistroyA

    DistroyA

    I WOD LICK A SONIC 2 ROMS Member
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    Nor is it meant to look plastic.

    Seriously, where the hell is grass gonna grow apart from the soil/clay? And, correct me if I'm wrong, but this project was started to ENHANCE the original art, NOT to recreate every goddamned pixel. Therefore, adding TEXTURE, such as soil, lighter flecks for grass etc. WILL enhance the original art.

    "EHZ was never supposed to look like dirt" indeed. It was meant to represent a natural environment (Even if it looks somewhat surreal, it still looks plastic...). Talk sense for Frith's sake.
     
  17. ICEknight

    ICEknight

    Researcher Researcher
    ...Or is it? The level blocks look plain and without irregularities, so they shouldn't look more like soil than, say, a Tetris block.

    They could have added small details here and there, had they not wanted the foreground to look like a "perfect chocolate bar". It's not like they were under 8-bit limitations or anything.
     
  18. DistroyA

    DistroyA

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    Instead they were under time constraints. Remember, Sonic was rushed out in the end, so, assuming they were going to improve upon the art, they wouldn't have had time to do so.

    I'll put it another

    The level is called Emerald Hill Zone for one reason only; the grass being a very vibrant green I.e Emerald green. This does not mean that the land should look artificial and like "Tetris blocks". Yeah, the shapes of the landscape add the surreal and abstract kind of feeling to the art, but it doesn't mean it should look like it was taken out of a plastic vacuum former and glued together from there. Therefore, adding soil textures to the earthy coloured blocks makes it look like land, and it makes sense to add texture, rather than letting it look flat and featureless.

    If anything, the people who are contributing the art for the levels should at least experiment with this idea, rather than everyone else shun it aside because it doesn't match every fucking pixel in the original art.

    Keep an open mind people, and actually try some ideas out, EVEN IF they seem like they'll "ruin" the artwork
     
  19. ICEknight

    ICEknight

    Researcher Researcher
    They redid levels like Casino Night from the ground up, so it's quite unlikely that they wouldn't have added some small textures because of time constraints... Specially considering Emerald Hill was one of the first levels made/shown.

    Plus, it just wouldn't fit with the theme, which looks like some kind of "artificial nature". In both Green and Emerald Hill you can see stuff (including rotating flowers, etc) that almost looks mechanical, unlike in previous SEGA games like Castle of Illusion where they gave flowers and trees a more natural look.

    Adding realistic stuff (like soil-like textures, etc) would make those things look "too natural", so I think making those elements look a bit plastic-like might indeed be the most faithful way to go, according to the original game's artistic direction.


    I'll be happy if somebody could make a texture so nice that will make me change my oppinion, though.
     
  20. Baby Ghost

    Baby Ghost

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    Suppose the reason it isn't dirt textured or plastic textured (or textured at all) is because it's like some sort of terra cotta pot-like material:
    [​IMG]
    Or maybe a sanded down orange brick:
    [​IMG]
    If it were either of those, it wouldn't have too much texturing.
     
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