How do you plan around future resizing of assets?

#1

Whenever I add art assets to a new project, I usually find whatever is free on sites like itch.io. These are usually images of varying resolution, so I have to scale or resize images to make it work.

The problem is, when it’s time to add the final versions of assets to the game, these assets could be completely different in size. This would mean either resizing the images to match the size of the placeholder images, which could cause distortion, or changing movement speeds or property animation values to make sense with the new image size, which seems tedious, and I could miss some values if I’m not thorough.

Is there a way to plan around this, or is it a necessary evil?

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#2

You need to decide what size your sprites will be before trying to implement them in game.

If the sprite set you wish to use is different than your game then either plan the game for the sprites or edit the sprites to fit the game. Of course you can scale and many do- but I wouldnt do that for the whole game- especially if you decide to change sprites or add skinning etc.

Its just easier to do a little on the front end than 10 x the work on the rear end.

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#3

How do you decide that, though? All I know is that I want high resolution drawings in the final game. How do I figure out how big those drawings need to be?

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#4

Well that is based on the capacity of your target platforms and audience. The bigger the images the more memory and higher capacity required by the processors and memory.

This is compounded by the number of sprites, sounds, and sfx going on. Every piece of memory counts and deducts from your processing speed. You want your images to be as physically small as you can make them and still convey what you want to see.

I personally makeup mockups using different size sprites till I get everything I like- then I put those sizes in my game design doc for reference. Many editors like Gimp have automatic batch processing which can resize whole folders of images at once.

So find the games you like and do some research on their resolution and images. Example If the game is running at 1366x768 on your computer take a screenshot and goto to art editor and measure the sprite sizes on the screen shot. That will get you a good understanding of scale in 1366x768. You can do this in the different resolutions.

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#5

Good advice!

@makorenwastaken What is the target platform? This will have the highest impact on the size you chose because from the choice of target platform you also know roughly the average screen resolution (and sometimes the exact screen resolution).

Once you know roughly the screen resolution you need to create some kind of mockups to get a feeling for the size of things in your game. Use rectangles, circles and other basic shapes to begin with!

When you have a rough idea of the size of things in your game you need to also think about animations. If your player character in a 2D side scroller is 100x200 pixels and you want Walk, idle, Jump, Run, Hurt, Attack and Dodge animations and each animation requires say worst case 8 frames then you can calculate how big your atlas for the player character will be. 100x200x7x8 = 1,120,000 pixels. This almost fits in a 1024x1024 atlas (1,048,576 pixels). That should be no problem regardless of platform. How many enemies do you need?Items? Level elements?

Continue like that and measure needs vs platform limitations. Stay within your budgets!

This is obviously tedious to do from the beginning but it can be quite useful. Sometimes you don’t really need to do it all at once, but you need to at least decide on the rough size of things.

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#6

That’s how I start :smile:

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