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Blood will be Spilled is a spaghetti-western-themed 2D action platformer taking place in a world inhabited by insects. You follow the story of Jack, a mosquito gunslinger, on his quest for revenge. But revenge is like a chilli - to make it good, Jack needs the right ingredients. A bit of money - from all the collected bounties; few friends, that could help him in the time of need; his own skills and abilities; and most of all shallow graves for all those who would stand in his way. The only question is: Are you going to be the good, the bad, or the ugly? Development began in May 2014 and we call ourselves Doublequote Studio.


  • Experience action-packed shootouts, hunt down criminals and collect bounties
  • Choose your own playstyle: Pick from three different skill sets (Good, Bad and Ugly) the one that suits your playstyle the best
  • During shootouts, Jack can hide behind a cover to reload bullets or just to take a little break from all the shooting. Or to shoot back.
  • Take advantage of Jack’s ability to suck blood from his enemies to fuel some of his more powerful skills
  • Challenge your enemies to duels, where speed and precision is all that matters
  • Hand-drawn comic-book style illustrations to reinforce the graphic novel feeling of the story
  • Original score recorded by award-winning post-jazz band Dajme Tomu
  • A fresh and modern take on “revenge western” genre

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Let's take a closer look at how we're making one of so many frames in our motion comics cutscenes. I'd like to talk a little about the individual steps that go into a creation of one scene (or frame). To demonstrate this, I chose a scene from the introductory cutscene of a villain named Sullivan from our demo. According to the storyboard, in this particular scene we wanted to show a flashback from Jack’s past about his encounter with Sullivan.

1. Pencil sketch

I'm always starting with a pencil sketch. The main reason for this is that I really enjoy classic drawing techniques and mostly because I'm not so skilled in drawing with the graphic tablet. It would be much more complicated and time consuming for me to achieve similar results right with the tablet. With pencil and paper I have a much better control over my drawings. For sketching I use classic HB pencil and for cutscene drawings a smooth 170g white paper (this affects mainly the ink lines later).

We are going to make a younger and less fat version of Sullivan (a fat greedy flea), as he is threatening and pointing his gun at Jack, who is off screen. For a more dramatic impact of this scene, I want to emphasize the perspective towards the viewer and use 3/4 angle for Sully aiming with the outstretched arm.


2. Contour lines

Next step is to do ink the contour lines. At this moment, there is no turning back. I am able to repair some small mistakes in the computer later, but mostly this is the finished outline of the picture as it is used in the game cutscene. For inking I'm using STAEDTLER pigment liner 0.1 and in some cases 0.3 size for different line weight to indicate light direction, but I try not to overdo it since we have strong hard shadows and high contrast for this purpose (we’ll get to that later).


3. The light source

Now is the time to throw some light on things in the frame. As we have the sun as the only light source in the right side of the scene, it's not so hard to define the darkest values.


4. Shadows

Since I have the dark values defined from previous step, I'm going to do some solid black shadows. This is a comic book stylisation, so there is no problem to exaggerate shadows a bit and to use some "noir style" high contrast. You know, if it looks good it doesn't have to be realistic :) This technique is similar to Mike Mignola's style (but not nearly as good). For this I'm using PENTEL Pocket Brush Pen, which I think is the best human creation since sliced bread.


5. Flats

At this point we are done with analog and we are going digital, baby. We are making a computer game, so let's use the computer a little bit. In this step I create flat colors inside the outlines. In flashback scenes we decided to use something like "sepia tint monochrome" color scheme to emphasize that this happened in the past so it's a bit different from our colored "present day" cutscenes. From this point on I'm using my Wacom Intuos4 graphic tablet.


6. Highlights, lights and textures

Highlights are spots of light on objects created when they are illuminated by a direct light source. Highlights, same as shadows, are pretty important not only for defining the shape but also to create an illusion of a three-dimensional object.


7. Halftones

Halftone is a technique that simulates tone with dots, varying either in size or in spacing and generating a gradient-like effect. This technique is used in print and since we are going for a old school comic book look or something that reminds old dime novels, it's a nice little trick to do some middle shadow values. For this purpose I use a Polygonal Lasso Tool and a special halftone brush in Photoshop to create a pattern.


8. Reflected light

This is totally exaggerated reflected light of a very bright color, which looks more like a highlight on the dark side. And it basically serves the same purpose - it separates the object, in this case our bad guy Sullivan from the dark background by creating a higher contrast.


9. Preparing for animation

We are making a motion comic cutscene, so we need to animate at least some important parts of the frame. That literally means, in this case, to cut our Sully into pieces. At this point I decided to emphasize the perspective even more by changing the dimensions of the gun a little bit, so it looks to be even closer to the camera and more threatening.


10. Making the scene

And as in any good movie, we are going to build a set. So we need some backgrounds, hills, clouds, props in the scene, environmental effects like dust and smoke and some other important things.


1- basic background texture, 2- background parallax, 3- splatters, 4- actors and props in the scene, 5- frames, 6- effects like color tint, lens flare, dust etc.

11. Animation

Then we put it all into After Effects, where my brother Ivan puts the whole frame into motion. This includes animating camera movement and all of the moving parts in a frame, adding particles and environmental effects, lighting, captions and finally voiceover, sound effects and music. But we’ll talk more about that some other day.

And that's it for now. If you want to see what else we have in store, be sure to follow our progress on facebook, twitter, or instagram.

Written by

Martin Kozmon

Art Director of Blood will be Spilled

Entomology of characters in Blood will be Spilled (Part 1)

Entomology of characters in Blood will be Spilled (Part 1)

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Entomology (from Greek "entomon" meaning "divided into segments") is the scientific study of insects. Let's take a look at insects of Blood will be Spilled...

Duels in Blood will be Spilled

Duels in Blood will be Spilled

Feature 6 comments

About duels in Western movies, what makes them great and how we build our own duel mechanic in Blood will be Spilled.

Guns of the Old West (part 1)

Guns of the Old West (part 1)

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We wanted our guns in Blood will be Spilled to be artifacts - based on the true guns of the Old West, yet stylized in our own way. Take a look at the...

A mosquito bounty hunter - creating our protagonist

A mosquito bounty hunter - creating our protagonist

Feature 6 comments

Jack is a mosquito and a bounty hunter. An insight into how we created the main character for our spaghetti western game and where we got all the inspiration...

Blood will be Spilled DEMO - Mac

Blood will be Spilled DEMO - Mac

Demo 0 comments

A MAC BUILD Our DEMO is finally released. Blood will be Spilled is a spaghetti western themed 2D action platformer taking place in a world of insects...

Blood will be Spilled DEMO - Windows

Blood will be Spilled DEMO - Windows

Demo 0 comments

A WINDOWS BUILD Our DEMO is finally released. Blood will be Spilled is a spaghetti western themed 2D action platformer taking place in a world of insects...


Nice game guys, congrats for greenlit! Looking foward!

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Ivanneke Creator

Thank you very much!

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I loved it, everything was great, the story, the artwork, the introduction, the voice over, the graphics...then watching the gameplay...I felt let down.

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Ivanneke Creator

Thank you very much for the feedback. :) We are still pretty deep in development, so if you had a little more time, could you be more specific about what was it the you particularly didn't like? Thank you!

Reply Good karma+2 votes

The story feels so epic, remembering the old westerns, the drama and passion that went into making them, looking at your game, I can tell you have the same passion as they did. But it just feels a platformer cannot deliver all the drama, action and excitement of those old westerns. While I have no idea exactly what kind of game could, maybe Im just remembering the my youth and getting defensive as it makes me want more, more then any developer could ever create. Of course this is a very immediate feeling from only seeing the barest bones of gameplay, your game could have it all and we just have not seen it yet.
That and the jumping, the jumping kinda looks like he just started floating up into the air.

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Ivanneke Creator

Thank you for taking the time to elaborate. We really try to incorporate as many spaghetti western elements into the gameplay as possible, though there are also some things that are probably expected from platformers. We love the genre too and try to do them justice. :)
We should have a public playable demo ready in a month or so, maybe you can try It out then and see how you feel about it. And yeah, we're already fixing the jumping, we hated it too. But thanks again for the feedback, we really appreciate it.

Reply Good karma+2 votes

I'm a sucker for westerns and anthropomorphic things. Looks good so far!

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Blood will be Spilled
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Visit our booth tomorrow at @RadiusFestival in @mqwien and try out our new demo! #indiedev #gamedev T.co

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New blogpost about our character animations Blog.bloodwillbespilled.com #madewithspine #indiedev #gamedev T.co

Jul 20 2016

This project looks amazing! T.co

Jul 12 2016

RT @ProjectMQ: #IndieDev @blwbs is a spaghetti western action story about revenge and insects. #IndieFeatureMonday #GameDev T.co

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Have a nice friday, cowboys. #madewithspine #gamedev #indiedev #animation T.co

Jul 1 2016

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