Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

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eurydike
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Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by eurydike » October 1st, 2018, 11:39 pm

Recently I made this limited version of ageless era called old era (forum thread link: viewtopic.php?f=19&t=48890 ),
I wanted to create some composite factions into the era by merging units from other factions within the ageless era. One of the composite factions I'd like to make involves minotaurs, more specifically I wanted to make a version of the Deep Elves faction with new minotaurs included. I created two images for the minotaurs, which will do for now, but it would be nice to get some feedback on how to improve them, or alternatively if someone could help polishing the images. I might not accept all renditions, if someone does go through the effort of improving these. All the minotaurs are supposed to have a charge attack based on the horns, which would be something along the lines of 13x1 pierce. They're also supposed to be big in size, but I think these got a bit too large? The minos could also become a standalone faction or they could get custom units alongside possibly as well.

Minotaur fighter:
minotaur_spear.png
minotaur_spear.png (10.65 KiB) Viewed 1315 times
Minotaur crusher:
minotaur_crusher.png
minotaur_crusher.png (10.21 KiB) Viewed 1315 times
Minotaur shepherd:
minotaur_shepherd.png
minotaur_shepherd.png (10.3 KiB) Viewed 1299 times
Last edited by eurydike on October 2nd, 2018, 9:09 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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ghype
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by ghype » October 2nd, 2018, 3:49 pm

Hello there.

i wonder why so many people started on working Minotaurs. Just yesterday somebody posted new sprites on the discord server.
anyway. I like the pose of the sprites but they do not look like wesnoth sprites. there multiple reasons for that:

- the sprites are too large, they are as big as most default oversized units.
- very unclear outerline, especially the second one
- your attempt of shading is ok, but wesnoth uses pillow shading where you have lesser grades of one colour.
- the first weapon looks very odd and unclear, as if you took a weapon from google images and downsized it.
- also instead of eyes they have only the back emptiness

maybe at some point i find some good references on how wesnoth-ish minotaurs could look like.
dont let my feed back discourage you, keep your work up.
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eurydike
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by eurydike » October 2nd, 2018, 9:14 pm

ghype wrote:
October 2nd, 2018, 3:49 pm
Hello there.

i wonder why so many people started on working Minotaurs. Just yesterday somebody posted new sprites on the discord server.
anyway. I like the pose of the sprites but they do not look like wesnoth sprites. there multiple reasons for that:

- the sprites are too large, they are as big as most default oversized units.
- very unclear outerline, especially the second one
- your attempt of shading is ok, but wesnoth uses pillow shading where you have lesser grades of one colour.
- the first weapon looks very odd and unclear, as if you took a weapon from google images and downsized it.
- also instead of eyes they have only the back emptiness

maybe at some point i find some good references on how wesnoth-ish minotaurs could look like.
dont let my feed back discourage you, keep your work up.
Hi.. I think they're too large too, though they were supposed to be bigger than standard human or elf, I think they're a bit out of proportion.. I think the outlines are unclear, but with this style of shading it's hard to add a clear outline, I tried making an outline but had trouble making it look nice. I think the pillow shading is a strange convention, I mean what purpose does it serve? :o Maybe if I knew some more about art this would make sense.. Yeah the first spear looks really terrible, but it was actually drawn with a grainy brush :D I'm fine with the eyes, but of course it's possible to improve on the current images in that respect too... Thanks for feedback.. Oh also there are examples of minotaurs in at least EoS - Minotaurs faction and also the faction these images are for, Deep Elves, contains a very well drawn minotaur graphic.. The lithic idol unit. It's much more professional looking than these images.

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ghype
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by ghype » October 2nd, 2018, 10:12 pm

yeah those minotaurs are maybe a good starting point.
maybe try to franken/re-arange some new minotaurs by using that as a base model for starters.

about the pillowshading... I might be wrong but I think thats how most wesnoht untis are drawn. If anyone knows better regarding the terminology, they are welcome to clear this up.
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eurydike
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by eurydike » October 2nd, 2018, 11:30 pm

Here I tried making a new version of the shepherd. I think it's slightly better but still has largely similar problems as the previous minotaurs do
minotaur_shepherd_2.png
minotaur_shepherd_2.png (9.93 KiB) Viewed 1287 times
And here are also new versions from the first two minotaurs.. well they are actually second and third , since the first was the worst of all.. :doh:
minotaur_spear_2.png
minotaur_spear_2.png (7.54 KiB) Viewed 1282 times
minotaur_8.png
minotaur_8.png (7.9 KiB) Viewed 1282 times

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Mirion147
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by Mirion147 » October 4th, 2018, 2:04 am

Nice! These are the best Minotaurs that I've seen around here. I would say that you probably want to avoid having a character actually looking directly south (at least in a base frame). But, although I haven't read all of the comments, I would say a few other things.

-The light source doesn't really make sense to me.
-I definitely feel like stronger outlines would be greatly beneficial.
-A bit more definition in the arms (they're furry, i get that, but you should still be able to see some musculature.
-And although I know you made them smaller, Wesnoth typically bases the size of the sprites on the levels of the units. Just kinda an fyi.

I'm not much of an artist (I'm not an artist) but I figured a comment wouldn't hurt!
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eurydike
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by eurydike » October 4th, 2018, 3:57 am

Mirion147 wrote:
October 4th, 2018, 2:04 am
Nice! These are the best Minotaurs that I've seen around here.

Thanks sort of wasn't expecting anyone to find these good.
would say that you probably want to avoid having a character actually looking directly south (at least in a base frame).
I guess because they're normally facing like South-east? And if there's no other images, then it's just mirrored when they face South-west? The stance of 3rd minotaur is sort of kind of facing South-east so I think it should work, but perhaps it would be more appropriate if it was looking slightly more to the east.. Umm for now I'm probably going to do just the baseframes so there won't be versions facing north etc. Although of course it would be cool to have more directions.
-The light source doesn't really make sense to me.
You're not alone with that thought :doh: I think especially the shepherds lightsource is kind of poor. Then again I don't think the images need to have a consistent light source, although it would be better if they did. Most wesnoth units are not drawn with a lightsource, as far as I can tell - and it makes sense because sometimes it's night, sometimes it's day, and shadows and such would need to be separately drawn for each schedule item for the lightsources to make sense. Like the shadows should point to west in the morning, and to the east in the evening.. Shadows should be lesser at nighttime, assuming there isn't like a fullmoon, and at day times they should be underneath the units more directly. :eng: :P So mostly units just have shadows directly under them.. Or that's what I think, of course people with more skill with art probably could more precisely define the lightsource issues for wesnoth. But there's definitely lots of improvement to be done in this respect with these images, I'm not very good at shading the units correctly - with or without a lightsource. But they're not all bad, and I think the shepherd is the most off in that respect.
-I definitely feel like stronger outlines would be greatly beneficial.
Probably, but I'm having trouble coming up with them, succesfully that is :oops:
-A bit more definition in the arms (they're furry, i get that, but you should still be able to see some musculature.
I could try do some work on them in that respect...
-And although I know you made them smaller, Wesnoth typically bases the size of the sprites on the levels of the units. Just kinda an fyi.
There are also inherent differences in unti sizes, consider for an example drake burner and saurian skirmisher? Drake burner is clearly larger. So these minotaurs are supposed to be much larger than standard humanoids, but still within bounds of decency and civility.

Thanks for feedback.. I'll try and do new versions now, at least from one of them. Or like improve on the current designs instead of starting from scratch again. :hmm:

Here's a slightly adjusted version of the shepherd (tried to make arms more defined, and also fixed some pixel transparency issues):
minotaur_shepherd_3.png
minotaur_shepherd_3.png (9.61 KiB) Viewed 1225 times
Made a completely new minotaur with an axe.. also tried to make it a bit more bullish and stronger looking. But they don't necessarily have to look like typical bulls.. I mean there are all kinds of horned animals so variation is possible. The axe could probably do some reworking.... :o
minotaur_axe.png
minotaur_axe.png (7.84 KiB) Viewed 1213 times

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ghype
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by ghype » October 4th, 2018, 9:43 am

the shoulders and biceps look well trained now. he feels very strong. too bad he is just a sheppard.

also the axe on the last minotaur could have some more lighter pixels, since I guess it is having a mettalic surface and hence reflects the most light.
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eurydike
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by eurydike » October 4th, 2018, 10:11 am

ghype wrote:
October 4th, 2018, 9:43 am
the shoulders and biceps look well trained now. he feels very strong. too bad he is just a sheppard.
I thought that it's kind of silly that the shepherd looks strong :doh: But I guess it's okay
also the axe on the last minotaur could have some more lighter pixels, since I guess it is having a mettalic surface and hence reflects the most light.
Got to try and do something about it!

By the way I made this WML weaponspecial ability for the Crusher 'stun' , it removes ZoC and reduces defense until end of turn by 10%, and it applies this image where stars are circling over a unit.. And a color modification, but problem is the color modification doesn't expire at end of turn, while the other effects do expire... Any idea what that's about? :o Here's also image for the stars thing (also added anotherone with grassland on the background):
stunned.png
stunned.png (7.33 KiB) Viewed 1197 times
stunned_grassland_background.png
stunned_grassland_background.png (10.97 KiB) Viewed 1196 times

enclave
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by enclave » October 4th, 2018, 5:12 pm

maybe they not wesnotish, but rather 3d max world or something, but i like them.. i think its early to say bad things about them looking foreign.. just need to see them in action :) y the decreased size/height looks much better to me.. and axe is not bad, as long as u can see it in game it should be fine :D
to answer your question abou color modification we would need to see code :D
ps. i think shepperd is level 2 :D he is the biggest :D just change his staff into huge troll hammer and thats it :D for level 3 give him red eyes and bigger head :) joking probably.. not sure tbh

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ghype
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by ghype » October 4th, 2018, 5:34 pm

so. I like your approach of adding this custom effect to your ability. however, I am afraid you will run intp some odd visuals once testing this, since most units have different hights. it will end up to be either too low or too high, i guess.
Should you fine a solution for fixing this, I could do an animation for the swinging stars. I imagine they would look nice when they move.

regarding the question about codes, it is usually better to ask them in the wml workshop.
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Edwylm
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by Edwylm » October 7th, 2018, 6:38 am

Looking at the sprites I have an issue with the heads. At first look it is hard to tell the snout along with the eyes, nostrils, and the mouth. The only one i can see clearly is minotaur_axe. Also the horns are in a weird position.

To me the minotaur_shepherd's hips look weird. Possibly the shading or the upper part makes it look its leaning to far over which makes the hips to far back or the legs are not right. I would suggest using minotaur_spear_2's approach as that looks more stable looking.

I would help clean up/polish them up but I have my hands full with other projects. But I can give you lot of tips as I did grow up on a dairy farm. Though the main question which bovine are you using as reference?

eurydike
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by eurydike » October 7th, 2018, 7:05 am

Edwylm wrote:
October 7th, 2018, 6:38 am
Looking at the sprites I have an issue with the heads. At first look it is hard to tell the snout along with the eyes, nostrils, and the mouth. The only one i can see clearly is minotaur_axe. Also the horns are in a weird position.

To me the minotaur_shepherd's hips look weird. Possibly the shading or the upper part makes it look its leaning to far over which makes the hips to far back or the legs are not right. I would suggest using minotaur_spear_2's approach as that looks more stable looking.

I would help clean up/polish them up but I have my hands full with other projects. But I can give you lot of tips as I did grow up on a dairy farm. Though the main question which bovine are you using as reference?
Hi, thanks for your reply. After looking at some more images I agree the horns are in a strange place, so I kind of agree with this.. But then they're also fantasy creatures so I'm not sure how to go about it... I mean I'm not sure which aspect of the horns seems most off mark to you, but at least I think the primary problem with them is that the horns start sort of straight from the side of the head.. And it seems most bovines seem to have some sort of protrusion or bulge towards the top of the head, where the horns grow.. ANd that that kind of is missing...

I agree with the minotaur shaman shepherd having weird hips. I guess they all have weird hips.. That I think is on some level an intentional result of circumstances.. That is the perspective the units are supposed to be drawn from is as far as I understand like a bit from the above. I'm not sure if there's an official angle( I seem to recall someone saying 30 degrees at some point somewhere, but I might be confusing that with some details about some isometric projections not related to wesnoth ), so and also the wesnoth graphics sort of have like, a bit like the units were a bit neonetized, in that they don't have typical human proportions, hands are larger, heads are larger (although not as much as my first attempts at drawing minotaurs), and in addition to that there's a limited amount of pixels to work with.. So how do these relate to the issue? Well if you draw typical proportions - and I don't know how to do that anyway - then the midriff, hips, and those areas become longer than they typically are. On some level that could be seen as being a result of the perspective being elevated. Anyway so there isn't like enough space to put the whole body in comfortably or so I feel about this, so on some level it's lack of ability to draw this, and on some level it's compromise over these mentioned issues. But it's also that the shaman shepherd is particularly much off somehow, so you're probably right about that it could be improved by somehow fixing the stance... But to make it really look realistic would probably imply making them taller and with the new space thus forming, there would be space for the hips and stomach area.. So this is also that if you have an elevated perspective, then on some level the bottom parts are more hidden by the top parts that get in the way... So like I don't have them drawn from the proper perspective, although I've tried to elevate it a little bit, but instead it's more like I've put more emphasis on those areas that would be visible, if it was drawn from elevated perspective. So like the shaman shepherd, you would see the chest easily, and also the feet, or hooves coming out under the main body, and the amount of exposure to the midriff would be reduced, so instead I've just kind of changed the proportions... Or that's like how I think about this, but of course even though these are some considerations to have, it's still at least 50% just lack of skill...

I didn't use particular references for the images, except for the axe wielding minotaur I was lookign at google image search for bull head.... Now I also got interested in making a vampire faction so I'm bit more enthusiastic about drawing those, but I should probably also figure out what to do with the minotaurs. I mean I'm not sure if trying to combine them with the Deep Elves is the right way to go, but that's at least a temporary solution. The deep elves - like already mentioned - already had one minotaur character so in a sense it's not a breach in thematics of the faction, and I suppose they could some tankier units in terms of gameplay aspects..

With the shaman shepherd I was thinking it could have an effect like, if you have recruited a minotaur.. I mean shepherd. Why do I keep talking about a shaman? Anyway so with the minotaur shepherd, that it would unlock recruiting like a yak or a gnu or bison or something like that. So if you get a shepherd you can the recruit actual bovine animals... But anyway I appreciate the feedback thanks again.

----

I think I should try and fix the horn issue.. Any tips about that?

Just did quick edits on 3 of the minotaurs and elevated the position of the horns a bit.... Also I think American Bison is really cool that would be a good basis.
minotaur_smasher.png
minotaur_smasher.png (7.85 KiB) Viewed 1058 times
minotaur_spear_3.png
minotaur_spear_3.png (7.56 KiB) Viewed 1058 times
minotaur_shepherd_4.png
minotaur_shepherd_4.png (9.63 KiB) Viewed 1058 times

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Edwylm
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by Edwylm » October 7th, 2018, 7:44 am

The horns look better, it gives the head more detail and depth to it.

Yeah making a fantasy creature that has many different descriptions is hard. The best suggestion I could give is looking up images. Some other unit suggestions would be the lower the unit level the smaller horns. Along with using different species of bovines. The shepherd looks similar to the Highland cattle. A Water buffalo as a head ramming minotaur. Possibilities are endless.

Well this topic is suppose to help you with your artwork via suggestions, finding issues and get other's help.
But you should work on the ones you feel enthusiastic first as ideas and working on something you like is more funner and feels better. And when you get back to work on the minotaurs I might have free time to help with polishing/editing if needed.

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ghype
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Re: Minotaurs - Assistance with polishing?

Post by ghype » October 7th, 2018, 9:55 am

i find you wonder how minotaurs could look like in a wesnoth-ish artstyle. I'd dont know the artist who did this, but they are taken from the era The Golden Age. these are high quality sprites in my opnion for a wesnoth game and fid your vision of minotaurs: oversized, muscular and wielding big weapons.

I think these two images provide a good starting point for you, if you'd wish to make your sprites look more wesnoth-ish.
minotaur.png
minotaur.png (5.97 KiB) Viewed 1033 times
minotaur-armored.png
minotaur-armored.png (7 KiB) Viewed 1033 times
here is an example on how their attack could look like
minotauro-attack.gif
minotauro-attack.gif (8.95 KiB) Viewed 1033 times
and here are all the frames found regarding these two sprites.
minotaurs_TGA.zip
(59.13 KiB) Downloaded 37 times
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