March 1, 2024

Pixel Art: The bouncy treasure box

So it’s been a while since the last time I did pixel art for a game or project (or just for the fun of it).

When I was younger I worked alone in almost every game project or demo/prototype I developed, so I was not only the coder but the artist as well.  And while it was not Paul Robertson-or-Johan Vinet level, my art was definitely not cringe material.

Then I started working with other people (real artists, which is great) so for the past 5 years or so I’ve had no need to make art for a game beyond REEEALLY rough concept art or placeholders.

Since now I’m working again in my own games and ideas I’ll be probably dusting off my art skills. I’m trying to get real artist to work on my most ambitious projects but there will always be a few game ideas I’ll most likely develop completely by myself.

So yesterday night I was thinking about a game I’m working on… and as a sort of exercise I decided to draw and animate something for it.

In this game whenever the player gathers a certain amount of diamonds, a treasure box appears from the ground as a reward. So this is how I pictured the box appearing:

Treasure text appearing from the ground
A treasure chest is born

Although it’s not perfect I’m really happy with the result. I wanted a bouncy blob jumping out of the ground and shaping itself into a treasure chest. As I was animating the sequence I decided to make the blob split in two and then merge back into the complete thing. The idea later evolved into making one of the parts become the lock and fall in place just as the rest of the chest “solidifies”.

This animation will probably not appear in THIS game (as I’m trying to get real artists to do the graphics for it) but I’ll definitely use it in a future. Treasure boxes are a common thing in the kind of games I like to make.

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