Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Way Of The Pixel

These last days I've been drawing a lot. So I thought that maybe I can talk a bit about my pixelart work in progress. Please, remember that these are not finished pixels so it's all ugly and sketchy. I apologise in advance for that. Still, it can be fun to share and talk about the whole pixelart process.
First, let's start with the beach house in Santa Monica from the astrolite quest for Mercurio. The basic layout of the scenario is pretty similar to the original Bloodlines level. I've just moved the entrance door from one side to the front of the house. In the back of the house, you can switch off the electricity and also you can access the "back door" at the other end of the fence.



Another good old scenario, the Santa Monica pier. In this case, I've reduced a lot the scope of the level. I'm not ready to draw the rollercoster since it has lots of detail but virtually no use for gameplay. Also, I've tried to remain close to the real Santa Monica beach. Here's my visual reference (courtesy of google images).






A typical pixelart scenario begins with a generic idea of the vibe and mood of the location. Sometimes it's directly borrowed from Bloodlines, sometimes it's just a mix of different ideas. In this case, I've started a sketch about a low life bar heavily inspired by Akira. If you haven't seen Akira or read the manga, please do it now.




With this reference in mind, I've sketched a quick version of the scenario. It's not the best support for a sketch, but I usually draw in a regular notebook with a regular ball-point pen. Nothing too fancy. In the doodle you can see the dirty stairs, the arcades in the back of the bar and a booth  near the bartender.


All these elements have remained in the first pixel concept. However, the location feels empty so I'll work on other details to fill in the space.


In this other concept, I've explored a classic idea in Vampire: the Masquerade. What happens when you lose control of your hunger in a very tight space like an elevator? Here we have a Nosferatu waiting behind two mortals.


And then he's lost control.







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