A.v.M. - Aliens vs. Marines "Aliens Online" redux

Making something for EDGE? Show it here.

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Postby Dartmerc » Mon 01 Mar 2010 9:42 pm


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Postby Tragos » Mon 01 Mar 2010 11:44 pm

I almost got that when they where still being pre-ordered... Then I decided that one recast for $90 was a much better bargain. Still haven't painted it yet. Before that new replica was on the scene, Pulse Rifles from defunct Prop companies where selling for between $2000 to $6500. I'd love to see the Smartgun and Flame thrower made next.

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Postby NuKe » Tue 02 Mar 2010 6:31 pm

The replica looks good but, i think the L.E.D is on the wrong side hehe

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Website

Postby Tragos » Wed 17 Mar 2010 2:28 am

Here it is, finally getting done.... None of the art is in place yet, but a good chunk of the information is at least complete. I tossed out the original html design, in favor of a premade blog style site.... I think it looks halfway decent, even if it is with minimal effort. :) Anyone that likes raycasting, dos compilers, c++, should check it out.... It will also show off several of my abandoned projects, such as my ill faded Gmud. :) Even a sneak peak of my much talked about sprite studio.

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Postby Liberation » Thu 18 Mar 2010 6:21 pm


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Postby Tragos » Thu 18 Mar 2010 11:32 pm

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Title Sreen for AvM:

Postby Tragos » Mon 22 Mar 2010 11:17 pm

Designed by me, but drawn by Armando Elizondo. Who I've recently hired to help with some of the artwork for my project.

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Well...... This just sucks.....

Postby Tragos » Thu 25 Mar 2010 1:48 pm

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Postby Tragos » Thu 25 Mar 2010 7:56 pm

Last edited by Tragos on Thu 25 Mar 2010 9:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Karnizero » Thu 25 Mar 2010 8:35 pm


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Postby Tragos » Thu 25 Mar 2010 9:49 pm

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Chromakey test

Postby Tragos » Fri 02 Apr 2010 12:34 am








Early shot of my attempts at making sprites. I used a red background on this first test, I eventually found out that green works much better for the hue of the alien's. Keep in my mind this is low resolution shot's of WIP. I have not decided on a fixed resolution for any sprites, despite my initial hopes of using as high as 640x480 my hardware just cannot support it. Their is not much difference between using a 128x128 sprite versus a 320x240 version anyways. I also hoped to add extra details with the use of .png images, but I may convert all my sprites to 256 colors if they retain a majority of their details. Either way, the new graphics will definitely appear drastically better than the original found in Aliens Online. I believe part of the reason they where low res, was to keep the lag low. In 1998 I was still using a 28.8k modem! :)
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Postby Liberation » Fri 02 Apr 2010 11:38 am


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More sprites....

Postby Tragos » Sun 04 Apr 2010 5:12 am






As I get more involved with creating sprites, I realize how tiresome this can be... Now before I dive into creating 40+ frames for my characters, I'm trying to hit some sort of level of standard to my art before proceeding further. As you can see with yet another test sprite above, you can easily hide some of the bad pixels just by shrinking and sharping the image. Easy enough right?

Of course with my modern software and hardware just achieving doom quality sprites just won't cut it! I can do much better than what you see above, the point I'm trying to make is that I need to spend no more time than maybe 20-30 minutes per frame for this to be worth while. The above tank images took about 20 mins between the actual filming, and editing.... Next I will be trying my digital camera with chroma key effects. My concern over using the digital camera is the extra time it takes.... With video I can view my posed figures frame by frame and grab the animation at the right moment I need it. When taking single frames with a digital camera, the lens is more sensitive, not to mention I'll have to be spot on with the animation. One mistakes and I will have to start over...

Camcorder
+Quick
+Ease of use
+Lots of frames to pick from
-Lower quality sprites
Digital Camera
+High Quality sprites
-Longer editing time
-Less frames
-Harder to use because of sensitivity.

My target size for the sprites are 128x128 up to 320x240. With no sprite frame greater than 30kb, and the entire sprite file being no larger than 64mb total. If anyone has some tips about sprite creation they can share, I'm all ears! :) I'd also like to see how my test sprite above looks rendered in D00M. Anyone is welcome to use the above image.



I'm starting to get better results... My backdrop didn't have enough light.... Trial and error,Trial and error,Trial and error.....
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Re: More sprites....

Postby Karnizero » Sun 04 Apr 2010 7:03 pm


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Postby Tragos » Mon 05 Apr 2010 1:22 am

Wow, thanks for all the input Karnizero. I already have a tripod, and drew marker lines like you mentioned. Some of my problems are due to lighting, which I will work on. As I play around with this more, I'm gradually getting better. I'm pleased with my most recent attempt here, but I'm still striving for better quality. I will look into Gimp as well as the technique known as cloning.



My current crude routine is something like this:
1. Figure recorded with Green Screen
2. Frame grabbed from video.
3. Image loaded into Image Anaylzer.
4. Color 256 to closest Nearest color.
5. Make background white in Paint.
6. Re-sample image size with "pixel resize"
7. Touch up left over jaggies, or stray pixel.

Karnizero, do you know of any good bitmap editors? Other than Deluxe Paint and JASC Paint Shop Pro from the 3.1 era? Both of those programs have been used by developers to make some of the most famous sprites we know today...
Last edited by Tragos on Mon 05 Apr 2010 2:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Been busy....

Postby Tragos » Mon 05 Apr 2010 2:03 am

Think I got it down now... How does it look? Next I need to work on more alien type poses for the actual animation...



So whats the verdict? Good enough? Or do I need more practice... :(
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Postby Karnizero » Mon 05 Apr 2010 5:59 pm

Not bad at all. Looks better than the first ones, but I guess why you scale it down.

As for Bitmap Editors (I suppose you mean Graphics Editor) other than the both you mentioned there, you may choose Photoshop or Gimp.

I always used Gimp, so I can't give you any tip about any other.


Talking about your sprite, the Alien in such position looks like drunk hehehe.

I realize that your camera takes quite low quality photos.
If you don't have a professional camera, you can solve it if:

- do not use any zoom, i.e. 1xZoom
- don't take big resolution photos. It's better to take photos at 640x480 than 2500x1700 (or whatever).

Once you have taken your photos, don't scale the sprite down and/or up. It's better to keep the original size.

If you want the image to NOT TO LOOK like a real photo, but more like a original Doom Sprite, you may use the "PIXELATE" filter in your program (in Gimp that is "Filters>Blur>Pixelate").

You may set the image to have 256 Color with the Doom Palette, but this usually results on weird colours if the photo is colourful.
But for that alien, I think you may do it, since the main colours are in the range white-black only, with blue ink.

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Postby Tragos » Mon 05 Apr 2010 9:31 pm

The difference between "bitmap" editor versus modern graphics editor is: A bitmap editor is heavily oriented towards the bitmapped and bitplaned display modes. This especially is true for Deluxe paint, which nearly every game from the late 80's to mid 90's used.

Ahah! The "PIXELATE" filter! Thanks for jogging my memory, I remember that photoshop has that same function. I completely forgot about it until now. I like to edit images per pixel sometimes, which is something photoshop just isn't made for... Hence the reason I hardly use it. I find it somewhat pathetic that a camera from 2004 performs only slightly better than a camera from the 90's! I made sure to pick out camera's with high levels of Optical Zoom, not digital. I actually turned off the digital feature in my JVC camcorder. Considering the amount of time and patience it takes making sprites, I have a new found respect for any artist who did this back in the 90's. AVP on the jaguar is the best example I can think of. They digitized walls, props, and real actors using film that was then scanned from a slide for use within the game. This is why this game looked so bad ass back in 1994.


As for posing the Alien, the figure in my previous post above is one of two that are up to the task. I personally don't care for the legs or arms on this figure, they don't appear "ALIEN" enough for my tastes. I'd consider hacking up the figure a bit to improve it, but this particular figure is so rare I can't bring myself to do it. LOL
Far as I know the Real Action hero's medicom figure was the first real poseable alien figure. Underneath the figure's rubbery skin, is just a plane old Gi Joe soldier. :) Thanks for you help Karnizero! I'll be trying GIMP later tonight. Since I don't feel like digging out my Alienware with photoshop.... :D As for the palette, I'm not worried much since I plan on making Zdoom use my own palette. Is their a way to import your own extension into XWE? What I mean is, there are presets for games like Hexen, Doom, Jedit Knight, Quake, etc... All using their own palette. Can I add an extension for my Project: Avm? Complete with its own color palette.

Medicom figure? Arms and legs don't match though.... Is it just me or do they look a little feminine?



Hard to tell but my sprite has the same support in the foot. The limited frames of the queen also prove that the Hive playset Queen by Kenner was used for this sprite, as it has very limited articulation. They also seemed to have omitted the spikes on her back? The tail also must be custom, or taken from another keener figure. The stock figure's tail cannot be posed like in AO's sprite. Next I will be examining the marine sprites closer. I already made one mistake, they are 12 sided and not 8. I cannot confirm at this time if the Aliens are 8 sided or 12.
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Postby Liberation » Tue 06 Apr 2010 5:04 pm

Is that Avp screenshot from the web or from a jaguar emu, coz i use project tempest to play avp and the sounds and graphics are abit dodge.

If anyone nows where i can get jagbag from plz let me know, for those that dont know jagbag was the best jag emu there was, but for some reason i cant find it no longer.

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Postby Tragos » Tue 06 Apr 2010 7:05 pm

Screens are from a real Jaguarr, sorry Lib. I've also noticed graphical glitches running AvP through project Tempest. I think a remember Jagbag, but it was a long time ago.
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Title Screen completed.

Postby Tragos » Thu 08 Apr 2010 5:52 am

Sneak peak of the finished title screen, without the logo at this time. Very happy with Armando's work, might I also add he is very affordable? I had to show it off here first since this is one of my favorite places on the web. :)



Additionally I've completed a majority of my website, which I'm now comfortable showing off. While I'm not a pro in any specific area concerning my interests.... I do believe my presence on the web will help promote my talents as my abilities continue to improve and grow. Have a look!

Last edited by Tragos on Thu 08 Apr 2010 11:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Tragos » Thu 08 Apr 2010 10:39 pm

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Postby Tragos » Sat 10 Apr 2010 12:40 am

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