More Artwork, Resolutions, and Wallpapers

<p>Spent another day working on encounter art. I was able to get just about everything laid out in Blender, and rendered out the objects for use in Photoshop. Blender allows rendering without anti-aliasing, so I should be able to maintain the crisp pixel lines needed for the style of art. And I think the rendered template will help to speed up the painting a lot.</p>

<p>All that remains now is to paint over the template, and see if the detail work and lighting holds up compared to the other hand-painted images. I see no reason why it wouldn't, since I'm basically hand-painting over everything anyway. But we'll see.</p>


<p>ggnomely <a href="" target="new">reminded me</a> today that I was going to create some desktop wallpapers a few months ago. I probably forgot about it as the <a href="" target="new">Steam Greenlight</a> launch and Labor Day weekend came up right after.</p>

<p>However, they're pretty quick to do, and I'm doing art stuff before the holidays anyway, so why not? I've added them to the <a href="" target="new">games overview page</a>, but I'll include them here too:</p>

<div style="float: left; margin-right: 1em">
<img src="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x720DMC.png" width="256" height="144">
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1024x768DMC.png">DMC 1024x768 (4:3)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x1024DMC.png">DMC 1280x1024 (5:4)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x720DMC.png">DMC 1280x720 (16:9)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x800DMC.png">DMC 1280x800 (16:10)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1680x1050DMC.png">DMC 1680x1050 (16:10)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1920x1080DMC.png">DMC 1920x1080 (16:9)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper320x480DMC.png">DMC 320x480 (3:2, iPhone)</a>
<br clear="all">
<div style="float: left; margin-right: 1em">
<img src="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x720Ruins.png" width="256" height="144">
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1024x768Ruins.png">Ruins 1024x768 (4:3)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x1024Ruins.png">Ruins 1280x1024 (5:4)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x720Ruins.png">Ruins 1280x720 (16:9)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1280x800Ruins.png">Ruins 1280x800 (16:10)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1680x1050Ruins.png">Ruins 1680x1050 (16:10)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper1920x1080Ruins.png">Ruins 1920x1080 (16:9)</a><br />
<a href="/img/wallpapers/nsWallpaper320x480Ruins.png">Ruins 320x480 (3:2, iPhone)</a>
<br clear="all">

<p>Hopefully there's a size there that works for you! And while we're on the topic of size...</p>

<h3>Screen Resolutions</h3>

<p>Despite the ease of making wallpapers, deciding on which resolutions to choose turned out to take more time. Using Google analytics data from the past year, I was able to see what types of screen sizes people use when viewing this site. It turns out that there are a lot of different sizes. 389 different aspect ratios, in fact!</p>

<p>Fortunately, they mostly fall into the buckets you see linked above. The large majority are the widescreens (16:9ish or 16:10ish), followed by standard definition (4:3ish), and tablet/phone sizes. This turned out to be a valuable exercise, since I can use this data to also gauge potential resolutions to target when doing a larger version of NEO Scavenger. So far, it seems like 1280x720 would fit the largest proportion of user screens, and maybe the best thing to do is just letterbox the space around the game to keep the ratio and zoom looking good.</p>

<p>Of course, there's still some content left to do first, and the art, so a resolution upgrade is still a ways off. But it's good to know what our options are!</p>

<p>Have a good night, all!</p>


Kitanode's picture

Good to hear you'll be adding some resolution options at some point.

After reading your previous blog entry i was wanting to know how much importance you place on the artwork for this game.

Apart from the extra resolutions, more images of present locations and enemies as well as map tiles are probably my most wished for item. I like the current style and setting of the game, we just need more, more, more.

dcfedor's picture

I agree! The trick is that the artwork takes a long time to make :) I'll definitely try to add more, though. Even just a single image per location can go a long way towards seeding the imagination. I think some of my favorite paper RPGs in the past were the ones that strategically showed just enough illustrations to get the mind going, but not so much that it stifles creativity or answers too many unknowns.

However, it's fair to say that NEO Scavenger still has a long way to go before it's in danger of over-illustration :)

Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games

dubsar's picture

I think letterboxing is a really nice way to compromise here - so folks with really high-end graphics systems aren't playing on a postage stamp of a window! And I also love the tactic you're taking and your thinking on illustration - great stuff!