- Space Inc. - a HTML5 top down multiplayer space game by Gaurav
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Among the many plans we have for this site, there is one particular project that I believe will be highly useful to the community -- namely, a system for building sprites out of separate parts, similar to this:
...except able to deal with sprites of different sizes, and also shift color palettes.
Essentially, the idea is that you choose a sprite base, pick from a number of accessories that go with that base (clothes, hair, etc), and then the generator will output a custom sprite sheet, built to your specifications.
So here's where you come in: I'm capable of coding something like this up, but I don't have a whole lot of time. If you're fluent in PHP and willing to help out, OGA could use your assistance. :)
If you can help, please reply here or drop me a line on our contact form.
For aspiring pixel artists out there, Fil Razorback of Les Forges has graciously allowed me to translate his excellent pixel art tutorials into English!
You can view the English translations here. I think I did pretty well (with the aid of some Canadian friends and various web translation services), but if you see any issues, please don't hesitate to let me know via the contact form.
If you're fluent in French, I strongly encourage you to view the original versions here.
P.S. REMINDER: The pixel art contest ends in 4 DAYS!.
It's been painfully clear to me as I've set up this site that by far the most confusing aspect of art in Free and Open Source games is licensing. There have been innumerable discussions about it all over the big wide internets, and the only real consensus is that there are just too many of them.
That said, licenses are a necessary and good thing. As a creator of content (be you an artist, writer, developer, etc), you have a right to stipulate the manner in which your work is used. Maybe you just want to see it spread as far and wide as possible without condition. Maybe you want it to be free, but you don't want some company to pick it up and use it, then try to sell it back to you without contributing something back. Maybe you'd like to make money by selling your creations. As an artist, it's the ability to control how your work is used that motivates you to create that work in the first place. It's this variety of needs and motivations that gives rise to the many different licenses that are out there. It's not too much of a logical leap to say that if there were no licenses, there wouldn't be as much art.
Of course, this proliferation of licenses leads to some serious problems. As an artist who doesn't understand how licenses work, which of the myriad licenses do you choose? As a developer, which art licenses are compatible with the license you've chosen for your software?
The rest of the OGA staff and I have been discussing a way to simplfy licensing choices while still allowing people as many (or more) options as are currently available, and I believe we've come up with a good solution. The plan is to offer five licensing choices:
1. My artwork may be used in projects that are "libre" (open source).
* 1a. In addition, I am willing to license my art to non-open-source projects for a fee.
2. My artwork may be used in non-open-source projects, provided that any modifications to that artwork are shared under the same license.
3. My artwork may be used in any manner, provided I am credited.
4. My artwork may be used in any manner, no credit necessary.
5. I'd like to choose my own licenses.
The first four options will automatically select a group of licenses that fit the given description. The fifth, of course will allow artists complete freedom to choose whichever license they prefer. The only restriction is the one we have right now -- all artwork on this site must be safe to used in GPLed projects, which means every licensing choice we offer must be able to be bundled with the GPL.
Given that this may take a little bit of time to implement, I'd like to get some comments from the community before I start. If you have any questions or ideas, I'd love to hear them. Please feel free to leave a comment below, and I'll try to address them. If you're curious, I encourage you to read the licensing section of our FAQ.
P.S. Reminder: The pixel art contest ends in 8 days, on August 1st!
So, over the last couple of weeks, I've been trying to learn a little bit about pixel art. The image you see here is my current progress on my own base sprite. When it's done, my plan is to slap an open license or two on it and send it out into the ether. :)
I'd like to take a minute, though, to talk about my process. While I wouldn't call myself a particularly good pixel artist, I'm learning fairly quickly, thanks in large part to the help of some of the pixel art communities around the teh internets. Specifically, I'd like to plug:
I've posted my art to both forums and received helpful advice in each case. The trick, really, is to realize that the people critiquing you (especially if you're a beginner) have a lot more experience than you do and thus know what they're talking about. Have thick skin, listen to their advice, and be prepared to re-work your art multiple times.
Oh, and for the love of all that is holy, USE REFERENCES! Do this regardless of whether you're drawing a person, a monster, a rock, or whatever. Not using references is a common beginner's mistake, and it's quite obvious. Even the pros use them -- there's no shame in it.
If you'd like to follow my progress, you can check out the critique threads:
Greets! A number of people have been asking how someone who isn't an artist might help OpenGameArt.org expand their archive. As you may or may not know, we only archive media from projects that have specifically given us permission to do so, regardless of the license used. At the moment, we have permission to archive art from three projects:
- Widelands ( http://wl.widelands.org/ )
- OpenArena ( http://www.openarena.ws/ )
- Spring 1944 ( http://s44.koshi.homelinux.net/ )
So if you're up to it, download the artwork from these projects (generally included in the source distributions), package it up an an organized fashion (being sure to preserve licensing information), and submit it to the site. Do as much or as little as you want, even if it's only one piece of art -- every little bit helps! Edit: The reason I've only named a few projects here is that some artists and developers would prefer that their work not be used elsewhere. While it might be legal to archive work in those cases, I would prefer to respect their wishes. If you'd like to archive work here that's from another project, please get permission from that project first.
P.S. The pixel art contest ends in 10 days!