At the beginning i was thinking of a one-year project, with someone else taking care of the artwork. I wanted to concentrate on programming and level editing only, but soon i realized two things. First, the game's scope was much broader than what i supposed it to be. Second, finding someone for the art stuff with the style i was thinking of, and the commitment to produce all the sprites, backgrounds, tiles..it was hard.
I eventually decided to make all the artwork myself. Only one issue: i had no idea of how to make it. I Had never made pixel art, let alone 2D animations. So i started from the basics: i grabbed some ripped
sprites, i studied how they worked, colors, palette, how the frame by frame animations were done. After two years the game had a mix of original and ripped sprites, modified to fit the game for color,
shape, size. At the end i've remade all the stuff by myself, obviously, so that now it's 100% original.
Some sprites were more challenging than others. As you may know spiders have 8 legs. 8 damn legs moving independently. To make a walking cycle i first isolated 4 legs in foreground. I made them as a rough animation made with simple "sticks" so that it woud be very fast to draw and preview. Each leg had to move in a cycle of its own, and keeping two legs on the ground all the time. At the end i was
satisfied, and i added shape, volume, color, detail. Then i shifted the overall animtion of half of the frames, and set it to be the other four background legs. In between lies the spider's body.
Doing this can easily take 15 or 20 hours, and drawing on a bumpy train ( i mostly develop the game on commuting trips..) is no joke ;)
I can tell, a couple of years after, that the pixelart part of doing this game has been one of the most enjoyable ones.
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