Creating better art for open source games | Opensource.com

Creating better art for open source games

Posted 12 Sep 2012 by 

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For those of you that missed it, the Liberated Pixel Cup is a gaming contest where the goal is to make free software art and free software games that use said art. It was sponsored this past June and July by Creative Commons, the Free Software Foundation, Open Game Art, Mozilla, and many individuals. 

While we're still waiting on the actual results and winners of the contest, this two-part article will take a comprehensive look at the assets produced (Part I) and the games developed (Part II).

(As a disclaimer, I participated in both parts of the competition.)

The rules of the art style guide suggested Victorian-like fantasy themes, but many artists took liberties and provided assets that followed the style, but not the theme. This left room for games to use whichever they preferred.

The base assets provided both naked men and women, drawn by Stephen Challener, each with 8 frames of movement per side—as well as some basic animations, like casting a spell or using a sword, and even a "death" animation. Manuel Riecke and Lanea Zimmerman provided clothing for the naked sprites.

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It also contained base tilesets from Lanea Zimmerman giving the game varied scenarios (like grass, volcanos, caves, waterfalls, rivers, lakes, building structures, and holes). Lanea's work also includes decorations (like barrels, trees and bridges). Daniel Armstrong provided castle tilesets and Charles Sanches provided animated enemies (like bees, bats, snakes, ghosts, and pumpkins). 

For the contest, artists like Johannes Sjolund, Stephen Challener, Skyler Robert, Lori Angela, and Luke Mehl provided a plethora of male and female character suits and animations, and Radomir Dopieralski provided child-sized characters to use for added variety. Johannes Sjolund added extra weapons and animations, as well as, a "training dummy"!

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Dethe Elza, Thane, and Stace Brimhall provided clothing accessories (like eye patches, glasses, and bandanas) and facial expressions (like joy and sadness). Artists Ben Potter, Chris Phillips, and "Tunicate" provided animated enemies. Matthew Nash provided an alternate version of the base enemies. And Daniel Eddleland provided amazing magic animations, farming tilesets, and some UI elements.

Speaking of tilesets, Casper Nilson's phenomenal Japanese-like tilesets, 3D-Windmill, tents, gravestones, and other objects were quite a sight. Chris Phillips provided alternate trees as well as an "evil church" building. Jonas Klinger provided some modern streets, buildings, furniture, and other objects (like cars and lamps). Guido Bos provided some wooden buildings, flowers, and alternate castle interiors. Emilio Sanches provided steampunk houses and objects, and Stefan Beller submitted animated water tiles. 

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Arthur Reterski provided basic items and Clint Bellanger provided animated coins. Johan Charlot provided a "Shoot'em up kit" with a very different artistic style from the rest (including a gnu, a penguin, and a fox fighting vegetables while flying through diverse backgrounds).

Not all of the assets were art. Music was created by Johnathan Roatch (sound effects) and Nelson James (varied "flac" music files). Brandon also submitted a song. 

These are just a few highlights of the contest! Check out even more material at the LPC art entries site. With so much talent, I have a feeling it will not be easy for the judges to decide who will take home each prize. Also, check out OpenGameArt's "LPC" assets tag. You'll find extra "LPC-Style" characters, weapons, and other assets that have been uploaded for open source game developers and need matching graphics.

Good luck, and may the best artist win!

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2 Comments

Aahit8
Open Minded

Good work for Games enthusiast. :)

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Nate Dunham

After millennia, a game like this is release for free!

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