Creating children or other very short characters?

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Semicolonkid
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Creating children or other very short characters?

#1 Post by Semicolonkid » Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:16 pm

Many visual novels cut character sprites off around the hips, or a little lower, and mine is no exception. But what happens when a character, like a little kid, isn't any taller than the waistline of an adult? Their entire face would be covered by the text box, and even if it wasn't, they'd look pretty silly with just their head poking out from the top of it.

Here's an image for reference.
Character Scale Example.png
On the left I have an adult, on the right a teenager, and in the middle is a young girl. Their heights match their actual relative height to each other. If I zoomed in on the little girl, it'd look really out of whack with any adults in the scene.

Any thoughts on how to handle this? How have you shown kids in your VNs, or how have you seen it done elsewhere?
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sasquatchii
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Re: Creating children or other very short characters?

#2 Post by sasquatchii » Sat Apr 20, 2019 11:00 pm

One way I've seen it done is to have the kids show up a head above the textbox. The below examples are from ebi-hime and GB Patch Games

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Could you do something like that with your character sprite? Even if they were a bit taller i think players would still understand that the character is a child.
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Semicolonkid
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Re: Creating children or other very short characters?

#3 Post by Semicolonkid » Sat Apr 20, 2019 11:43 pm

Part of the issue is that she's only 7, which makes me worried the abstracted height difference might still lead to a higher expected age...but that second example is surprisingly effective for some reason.

Making just enough room for shoulders does seem pretty reasonable, and doesn't look weird. Having thought about it some more, I am also considering cutting the camera down to her height when she speaks, effectively cutting off the upper bodies of the adults, which might be kind of funny.

In any case, I'll give this a try too! Thanks!
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Re: Creating children or other very short characters?

#4 Post by Katy133 » Sat Apr 27, 2019 10:36 am

I cheat perspective. In my VN, Three Guys That Paint, one of the characters was a young child. If you were to try and draw her legs and feet next to the adults in this screenshot, they'd look stretched. But since her legs and feet are cut off, the player has a suspension of disbelief. Instead, players know (visually) that she's a child because of her body proportions and because she's two heads shorter than the character next to her.
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