Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

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nefferinthia
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Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#1 Post by nefferinthia » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:29 pm

As the topic says, I'm wonder if my art style/quality is acceptable for visual novels. By acceptable, I basically mean that if you saw these sprites in a thread for a (non-commercial) game, it would not influence your opinion of it negatively. I'm asking because I've seen good plots that had sprites that made me less likely to play it. Please be honest!

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I know I have a lot to learn on digital art, and I'm practicing my digital lines and colouring, but i like to think that my anatomy at least is pretty decent?

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#2 Post by Desu_Cake » Mon Nov 25, 2013 10:07 pm

I'm going to be completely honest here, and say no, it's not acceptable. I would be disinclined to play a VN with art of this level, sorry.

Things you should concentrate on improving:
- Linework. The lines are all uniform and way too thick. Are you using a mouse?
- Posing. Everyone goes for that pose at first. Try making the pose more interesting, so that it shows a bit of his character.
- The neck and shoulders. He has a giraffe neck, and the shoulders are at the wrong angle compared to the rest of him. His right shoulder in particular is way too wide compared to his left.
-Shading. Don't be afraid of shadows. Make them big and dark.

I hope it helps. :)

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#3 Post by nefferinthia » Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:56 am

Thank you for the advice! I know about the lines, and they're my biggest problem. I'm much better at traditional lining, but I think scanning the lines looks too unclean, so I'm torn. I guess I'll keep working on it.

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#4 Post by Anne » Tue Nov 26, 2013 1:57 pm

I think he's cute. And while what Desu_Cake said is all true that wouldn't stop me from playing your game.

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#5 Post by fleet » Tue Nov 26, 2013 2:12 pm

If I thought the story was interesting, I would play a VN with your artwork.
If you have an idea for a VN, fine, go ahead and make it using your artwork. A desire to be a better artist should not stop you. If you wait until you get universal approval of your art before making a VN, you'll never make one.
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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#6 Post by DeletedUser160413 » Tue Nov 26, 2013 3:00 pm

I think you should work on making the lines straighter and thinner. I hope this will help you see the difference.

Also, work in a program you actually like. Download a couple of trials of different programs like Photoshop CS, Gimp, Corel, PaintTool SAI etc. I usually use photoshop and SAI when making sprites, so experiment a lot and practise as much as you can!
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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#7 Post by Sharm » Tue Nov 26, 2013 4:16 pm

Hmm, it's right on the edge for me. If the game sounded interesting enough I'd probably still play it, but a screencap of your game wouldn't influence me in a positive way. I bet working at a larger size would solve a lot of the problems with line weight and rough lines. Also, since it looks like you're working with a mouse you'll want to learn how to use a program with a pen tool. Getting smooth lines with just a mouse and a normal brush is extremely hard and time consuming.

If you prefer traditional inking there are ways to scan or clean up the lines so that they look nicer. Inking on a paper with almost no tooth like printer paper or bristol board can help. Making sure your pencil lines are completely gone or using an erasable non photo blue pencil so that the scanner can't see it as well can help. Understanding how to get the most out of your scanner and how to use levels properly is helpful. I know some people who scan really huge, make the image completely black and white then scale down the final image and it works surprisingly well (it's not for me personally). Using a good pen that isn't running out of ink is huge. I don't ink by hand anymore so I don't remember the good brands, but I preferred the kind with soft tips like Sakura Microns or Staedtler Pigment Liners.
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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#8 Post by Applegate » Tue Nov 26, 2013 5:51 pm

The important part is making the game you would want to play. Would you read a VN with your art as it is right now? If your answer is "no", then you should not expect it of other people. If you would, then you can also expect it of other people. What's important is that you create something that, when asked about it, you puff your chest and proudly proclaim it yours.

I'd say yes, if your story is sufficiently interesting I'd read it. But I place a higher value on the story aspect of a Visual Novel and care less for pure visual appeal. You'll find plenty who put less value in story and find art to be more important, however, so think about which group you want to reach. And no offence intended, but if you want to reach the people who care about the visual aspect of the visual novel a lot, you're probably not in a good position.

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#9 Post by pineapplepocky » Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:35 am

I think you're going in the right direction, but your art direction might be a little off. As a tip, when you're outlining your character, use a smaller brush, or zoom in on your picture a lot more when lining.

Also, if drawing traditionally is better for you, it doesn't hurt to try it out for a visual novel. If scanning is the issue, it might be the quality of your scanner, and you might want to consider scanning it a lot higher dpi and try and shrink it

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#10 Post by Armee » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:17 am

It look a bit like you do it when you're rushing, a bit grunge I may said. Trying to take more time while working, it might give you a more decent work.
Anyway, not all VNs need art or good-looking art, it doesn't need to be all pretty and sparkling to be a good VN (even though it's a plus). I mean, not everybody can draw in a way that everyone like (especially me otl) so don't worry.

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#11 Post by nefferinthia » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:42 am

Thanks for the input everyone! I actually did get myself a pen tablet ages ago, but I'm obviously not exactly great at workin with it. I suppose that's just practice though. I do have terribly squiggly lines for ome reason, and i have no clue what to do about them as I've tried pretty much every solution on the web. As for art programs, I've tried SAI and I don't understand it very much, pretty funny considering my preferred program would be Photoshop, ahaha.

Still, it seems that if I want to make a VN, it's best to just go for it and worry about this later.

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#12 Post by MaiMai » Wed Nov 27, 2013 4:31 am

If you're still making squiggly lines it means you haven't drawn enough. So yes, pretty much practice and have you looked up tutorials for vector layers for SAI? I think that might be worth experimenting with. In fact, look up more tutorials and keep practicing lines if you want to make better sprites.
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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#13 Post by nefferinthia » Wed Nov 27, 2013 6:44 pm

Ah, digital drawing is so very different from drawing on paper. It's very hard to get used to. But no, I haven't looked into that, although I really don't like SAI, but I think I might try it out then.

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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#14 Post by Sharm » Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:45 pm

Really though, working bigger will make a big difference. It will make your lines thinner and less squiggly at the same time.
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Re: Are these sprites acceptable for VNs?

#15 Post by JinxedTarotCard » Sun Dec 15, 2013 5:22 pm

For me, art and story in VN is pretty much 50/50. I've been playing a lot of mobile VNs lately, and while they do have good art, the stories/dialog are boring so I haven't been to interested in playing them much. I'd play game with your art in it as long as the characters and plot were interesting.

If you're having problems getting used to your tablet, try taping a sheet of paper over it. As for your linework, you could always try scanning in your artwork and then trace it or tape it to your tablet and trace over it. Also, try not to move slowly while doing the line art, faster strokes tend to make the lines less wobbly.

You could also try using FireAlpaca, which is a free drawing program that's similar to Sai, but completely free. If you're using Photoshop, you could try out Lazy Nezumi to smooth out your lines. It used to be free, but now there's a pro version with a free 30 day trial.

In regard to poses, I recommend looking up reference or trying out the pose yourself. If it feels awkward for you to do, it'll probably be awkward to look at as well. XD

Good luck!

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