How do you make units' pixel art?

Make art for user-made content.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

Forum rules
Before posting critique in this forum, you must read the following thread:
Post Reply
User avatar
Posts: 270
Joined: December 26th, 2014, 12:23 am
Location: Beijing

How do you make units' pixel art?

Post by Xara » September 5th, 2015, 11:57 pm

Art is always what hindered me from making some Wesnoth units. But I recently discovered that, with my current experience of Photoshop, maybe I can draw something not horrible. Well, not that horrible :roll: . So I have some questions here to ask.

Do you paint on a 72x72 canvas from the start or paint from a larger one and resize the image? How do you make sure the colors is recognized as "magenta for team color" by the game? And how do you make sure the shape is right on such a small image?


Thanks guys, your replies are very helpful! :D
Last edited by Xara on September 6th, 2015, 12:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
It pronounces Sha'ha, not Zara.

Feedback Thread of my Add-ons

User avatar
Posts: 18
Joined: September 2nd, 2015, 6:05 pm

Re: How do you make units' pixel art?

Post by Mad_Hatter » September 6th, 2015, 6:32 am

I just read are tutorias here:

But most important for me was tutorial by Zerovirus: ... tstuff.PNG

About magenta:

And more interesting stuff:

When i create my stuff i work on 72x72 and i don't use resize because it make blur effect what is not good.
I am using the free Gimp which for this purpose is simply great.
About shape, well, I think that requires practice and comments from other.
Last edited by Mad_Hatter on September 6th, 2015, 6:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 120
Joined: August 25th, 2012, 5:13 pm

Re: How do you make units' pixel art?

Post by aquileia » September 6th, 2015, 6:35 am

Edit: Ninja'd

User avatar
Posts: 482
Joined: November 10th, 2009, 2:21 pm
Location: Esbo, Finland

Re: How do you make units' pixel art?

Post by SFault » September 6th, 2015, 8:08 am

I usually work on larger canvas so I can edit certain things (e.g. weapons) separately. Then I combine the parts and copy-paste the sprite to proper canvas size. For magenta I use the color picker on the swatch linked above.

Some hints
-no transparent pixels (except on shadows, attack animations and some special light effects). So, make sure your brush is hard and you don't rotate things in non-90-degrees and don't use scaling feature.
-avoid pure black color
-use outlines also "inside" the sprite, for example, on belt or medallion
-don't use too many colors. 16 color palette should be enough
-no pillow shading. In wesnoth for unit facing right you can use light source coming from upper right.

pixel tutorials
segmentation fault
EBfW, GtR, Art, Old art

User avatar
Site Administrator
Posts: 6573
Joined: November 14th, 2006, 5:54 pm
Location: Chile

Re: How do you make units' pixel art?

Post by shadowm » September 6th, 2015, 9:20 pm

On the subject of team color, if you want to be able to quickly preview the results when run through the game’s recoloring method with different team colors (red, blue, etc.), you might want to give Wesnoth RCX a try.
Author of the unofficial UtBS sequels Invasion from the Unknown and After the Storm.

User avatar
Posts: 67
Joined: August 9th, 2015, 5:55 am

Re: How do you make units' pixel art?

Post by Nikita_Sadkov » September 7th, 2015, 12:47 am

I would recommend starting with some anatomy tutorial. Then some stylistics tutorial, describing proportions, so you can study and understand Wesnoth's animeish almost-superdeformed style. :eng:

Doing art without getting the direction correctly will produce art incompatible with the art already in the game.

Post Reply