Evelina Foxberg

Evelina Foxberg


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My life as a Game Design & Graphics student

2015 > 02

This week I have worked on making a death animation for our main character, the fox. In our game, the player is trying to sneak around the mansion without getting detected by Mr Otto von Fancy. If they get detected, Mr von Fancy will hunt the player down, and shoot them with his tesla gun, thus ending the game.

Last week, we presented the alpha of our game in front of the rest of the class, and the feedback we recieved included that the game was almost too scary, considering our target audience is kids. One thing that was mentioned was that we should take inspiration from kids cartoon shows on TV for the movements and animations of our characters, in order to make it less scary. Taking this into account, and the fact that Otto is using a tesla gun that shoots bolts of electricity at the player, we decided that we wanted our death animation to look like one of those comic deaths when the character gets struck by lighting. In these, you usually see like an x-ray of their skeleton, together with some lightning flares and a buzzing sound. This would achieve the kids comic feel that we are going for, and the unrealistic death would also help make the game less scary (hopefully).


I started by looking at some references, such as this  and this.

I also looked at this video as a reference for the blue surrounding electrizity.

As for the how, I used my previous animations of the walking fox as a template, and drew the skeleton on a separate layer on top of that. I used pictures of fox skulls as reference for the skull shape, and then added a black zig-zag shape underneath. I considered making the black blob a plain silhouette of the fox, so that the jagged parts would represent its fur raised as a result of the electricity. However, this meant that the parts where the fox is wearing cloghes would be straight and not jagged, and as I tried this out I realized it looked pretty strange. Therefore I looked at even more references, and decided that the blob instead would represent the electicity itself, and be a little bit bigger than the character himself. This would also mean that the entire thing could have jagged edges, and it did in fact look much better. To achieve the crisp jagged edges, I used the polygon lasso in photoshop in order to create the shape, and then filled it in with black colour.

The blue surrounding electricity flares were created on a separate layer, where I painted the light blue flares first and then added the glow in "layer properties" using the setting for "outer glow". There I changed the colour of the glow to medium blue instead of the light yellow preset. Two sets of flares were created to match the two different fox poses, and I made them similar to each other in order to create a feeling of consistency even though they are different from each other. I want it to feel like the flare is in fact one flare that is changing a little bit in between the two images, instead of two completely different flares. The flares are heavily referenced from the video posted above.

As I had problems making the GIF work properly on the website this week, you can see the full animation here.

Etiketter: 5sd033

This week I have worked on the Otto animation. I started out making a sketch of the turtle in Photoshop, and then animated the sketch into a walk cycle. This was done in order to see that the movement flowed the way I wanted it to, before continuing on to animating the turtle in a more detailed state.

As the turtle is both old, is supposed to be scary, and make noise when he walks (for the player to hear and respond to), I wanted to make his walk kind of choppy and non-smooth. Therefore, after completing the first walk cycle and noticing that the walk ended up too smooth, I had to reduce the amount of images in the animation. I removed some in-between steps to achieve the right feeling in the movement. I also altered his facial expression compared to the earlier sketches, and made his eyes bigger and angrier with exaggerated eyebrows, in order to communicate his angry personality clearly to the player even though the character himself is pretty small on the screen.

I left out Otto's arms in the original animation, as I find it easier to animate them at a later stage, as separate objects. At the moment the arms still need some work, and therefore I have chosen not to include them in the GIF.

After the animated sketch of Otto was done, I started doing a more detailed version of the line art. When one movement phase was done, I used that layer and copied it with transformations applied to the other layers in order to save some time, and also to make sure that the details looked the same and had the same proportions in all the pictures. However, transforming a layer made the lines kind of ragged and pixel-y in the edges, so some smoothing-out was required before they looked good again. After that, I used an earlier sketch of Mr. Von Fancy as a reference for picking colours. Again I used one layer in Photoshop for the colours, and copied it to the other layers with some transormations.

When one full colour and line-art walking cycle was done, I flipped the image horizontally to make an animation for walking in the other direction. Some changes had to be made to the shell of the turtle, as it is asymetrical in its details. Just like in the previous steps, I made one shell picture that I copied and used for all the layers.  

Above: Otto walk animation.

Hey y'all!

During this course (Introduction to Game Design), each team will make a Space shooter game. These games will be based on any of the other teams' concepts that were developed during the previous game design course. Our team's chosen concept is Fancy Mansion, which is a sneak game where you try to steal stuff from a mansion in the middle of the night, without getting detected and shot dead by the owner of the mansion. The game has a few comical elements to it, and will be made in a cartoony, antropomorphic style so as to appeal to a younger audience (around 10 years old).

This week I have worked on the Thief character of our game, which is also the player avatar. The character design has been developed during previous weeks, with a racoon as the chosen animal to represent the thief. This decision was based on the general burglar-y look of the animal, with the stripes on the tail and the mask-looking dots on their eyes, which will enhance the thief-y look of the character. However, since our main protagonist is going to be a turtle, a few people made the connection to another game called Sly, which none of us had heard of before. In this other game, they also have a racoon and a turtle as main characters, so therefore we decided that we need to change one of our characters. As the entire group really like the turtle concept, we decided to change the racoon into something different. We all agreed that a fox would suit the game just as much, as they are traditionally seen as sly, clever creatures that could very well be sneaky and stealthy. They also look similar to the racoon, form-wise, so it would be an easy fix.

I also worked on the animation of the Thief character, to get a basic walk cycle done. This was done in Photoshop using the timeline tool to put the right moves in the right order, and different layers for the different stages of the walk cycle. I took the 12 principles of animation into consideration when making it move, applying some overlapping action in the tail – as it bounces along when the character moves. However, as the walk turned out quite ”trotty”, and not as sneaky as I would have liked it, I will continue to work on the walk cycle in order to get the right feeling in it. This could be done through leaning the character forward a bit, hunching it over as if it was sneaking. The arms could be raised a bit as well, to accentuate that the character is trying to be very careful and sneaky. I might also change the footwork of the character, to give it a bit more of a careful step.