How to Create Pixel Art for My Startup 2D Game Development Project

pixel art

Remember those days when we never complained about computer graphics and were content to play games such as Super Mario Brothers or Contra in a limited resolution? I mean, they are games running in 8 bits. Weren’t we happy with them? We definitely were.

The surprising fact is people still play pixel art games. The more surprising fact is that pixel art games are in development to an intense degree in an age where Virtual Reality is making a breakthrough.

The Reason for the Rise of Pixel Art Video Games

Pixel art games are fun to play. They are sometimes easier in the gameplay part than most other games. They are easy to manage on devices because of their simplistic style. Here is why:

  • They are relatively easy to play
  • You can play them in a low-end device
  • Apart from low hardware requirements, these games do not take larger size
  • It is easy to design and develop them
  • Pixel art games give the classic taste of video gaming than no other games
  • Most pixel art games are free
  • Even if you want to buy them, they are much cheaper than larger games
  • You can make 3D pixel art games, too
  • 2D pixel art games are simpler to make but are widely popular
  • Pixel art game development is quite cheap

With all that said, you might be wondering what pixel art is. Well, you have probably known about it visually. Here is the definition of it in the general sense. 

What Is Pixel Art?

A pixel is a single unit on a computer screen or on any digital screen. Consider them tiny dots. Pixel art is, therefore, controlling and manipulating these dots to make art or pictures that we will later put into the game.

Pixel art games use all the visual content made by pixel art style. You can use pixel art designs to paint the locations, the in-game characters, and objects (such as weapons, rewards, etc.).

Often, the characters, weapons or other objects that are put in a pixel art game are called sprites. Things such as in-game items are also called sprites. 

How to Make Pixel Art for Games You Are Designing?

If, obviously, you are making a pixel art game, then you will need to take the help of pixel art to complete it. Although pixel art composition and application are relatively easy and cost-efficient, you might need other costs for getting the game published, purchasing assets or making yourself a website to market the game simply. 

You can take out startup loans for bad credit from a private lender if you are suffering financial problems. You may use your present or alternative income to repay the loan. Again, you may use your business plans as income details to get the loan with a zero present income.

1. Choose Your Style

2D or 3D pixel art games come with different sorts of art styles from the viewpoint of perspective. The three styles mostly used in pixel art games are:

  • Top-down: The view is from above. Games like Hotline Miami have this style. You can actually see this style in many games. Sometimes, they are known as twin-stick shooters, too. 
  • Isometric Style: In this style, you see a little angular tilt in the top-down style. You can get an idea of this from Keylocker. 
  • Side-on or Platformer Style Pixel Art: You are all familiar with this. In this, the location is set in the background while the characters move forward and backwards while the gamer views the characters moving inside. Games like Celeste, Huntdown or Super Mario Brothers are good examples of it. 

2. Choose the Resolution According to Canvas Size

Well, the canvas means the size of the screens found in gaming devices such as the Gameboy. Choose your resolution from the below:

  • Game Boy – 160 p x 144 p
  • Game Boy Advance – 240 p x 160 p
  • NES – 256 p x 240 p
  • SNES – 256 p x 224 p
  • Genesis – 320 p x 224 p

3. Now Choose the Pixel Numbers for the Sprites

Sprites mean the in-game character or the objects you are using in your video games. You have to select the number of pixels to determine the resolution of the game partly. Here is a list.

  • 8×8 = 64
  • 16×16 = 256
  • 24 x 24 = 576 
  • 32 x 32 = 1024

4. Using Fewer Colours Can Help You

If you are a beginner game developer and your first game is designed in pixel art, then you can try it out using fewer colours. It can help you understand pixel art better. 

Of course, you do not have to make the game in that way. Stick to the script and the writing of your game. However, use pixel art in fewer colours to make work easier.

5. Use Basic Shapes and lower-resolution

Although you might not be happy with basic shapes, many Indie game developers are using it. As a matter of fact, basic shapes can give you an idea of how the game works. Besides, as they say, you can make a game look better in basic shapes too if you make it more strategically. 

Include various levels and characters so that you can play with basic shapes and imitate the shapes of real-life objects in the game to make them feel more relevant. 

Lower resolution helps your game to run faster. However, using higher resolution in pixel art games is not going to slow down your game monstrously. The real reason to use lower resolution is that you will need fewer pixels to draw the art. Therefore, drawing pixel art will be easy.

6. You Can Reiterate

When you are done with designing your game, you can now build up. Make a prototype of your game and run it. Find out if the low resolution actually makes the game look better. Some games do look good in low resolution. 

However, if that is not the case, then you are welcome to add more iterations to your art to make it high-resolution. 

To Conclude

You will need tools to create pixel art. Although tools such as Inkscape and GameMaker are free, you will need to pay for Adobe Photoshop; Procreate or Aseprite. You can borrow a personal loan though. 

You can take out loans from 1oneFinance. It is a private lender with all sorts of unsecured loans that you can borrow even with a bad credit score.  Do more research about pixel art for games. Watch videos and go through tutorials to learn about them. If you still need more help, grab some money from that loan and book yourself an online class on the subject. Platforms like Udemy or Skillshare can help. 



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