Comic Talk, Tips and Tricks

I'd like some feedback on a sprite comic idea...
NickyP at 12:07AM, Oct. 20, 2010
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Yeah yeah yeah, calm down. I can hear your “boos” loud and clear. I know no one likes a sprite comic. Still though, as I lack real drawing talent, it along with sticks is all I'm capable of. :P Anyways.

So. I always said to myself and friends that if I were ever in charge of making Pokemon, it would be far more serious than we know it. The main characters would be in their mid-20's to 30's as opposed to 11, Team Rocket would be a legitimately dangerous crime syndicate, battles would be way more fierce, etc etc. These ideas that I've had since at least Middle School are the backbone of the comic; Pokemon, but more serious… “realistic”, even.

The sprites themselves would vary between GBA and DS… for the Pokemon. For humans, the sprites would be edited characters from various 2D fighting games… like Street Fighter or Fatal Fury. I've spent a good half hour and made two mock-ups; nothing really “serious”, but enough to give you a taste of what it'd look like if I really went for it.

http://img535.imageshack.us/img535/6217/pkmxnvs.png
http://img97.imageshack.us/img97/1723/pkmxex2a.png

So, what would you say? Do you think the idea could work? If so, would you legitimately be interested in reading it? While I understand one should do these kinds of things for the self-satisfaction they get and not for anyone else, the truth is theres no real point in making a comic no one will ever read.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
Genejoke at 5:52AM, Oct. 20, 2010
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why not try a poser style comic? daz 3d is free and there is loads of free stuff out there too.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:33PM
NickyP at 9:42AM, Oct. 20, 2010
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Poser style? What do you mean by that?
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
BlkKnight at 4:18PM, Oct. 20, 2010
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Meaning posed 3D models.
That's “Dr. BlkKnight” to all of you.
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:26AM
El Cid at 7:54PM, Oct. 20, 2010
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Sprite comics are only good for goofy parodies. If you're trying to do anything “serious,” you definitely want to find a better medium. From looking at your demo shots, I'm encouraged by the fact that you at least seem to be trying to create dramatic compositions, but I don't see you getting very far with it unless you're creating your own sprites… which sort of defeats the purpose, now doesn't it!

To answer the question, no I wouldn't read it. I don't think it will be funny, and I'm not convinced you can achieve anything else with this medium.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
El Cid at 7:59PM, Oct. 20, 2010
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NickyP
Poser style? What do you mean by that?
3D artwork that uses freely or commercially available 3D meshes. Here's a link to my “Poser style” comic, Certified Monster (it's sort of a misnomer because the comic wasn't rendered in Poser).

I don't think it's a realistic option for you however, at least not with this story. It would take a considerable amount of learning and creativity/ingenuity before you'd be able to do a decent Pokemon rip-off with Poser, because the figures would require quite a bit of customization. And still the project would suffer all kinds of consistency problems with settings and FX and all and just wouldn't look right.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
NickyP at 9:55PM, Oct. 20, 2010
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Ah, 3D. Yeah, definately not happening. Not only do I not have the time to learn that, but I doubt I have the equipment too. This laptop isn't exactly bad, but it's graphics capabilities are in the toilet. Besides, I doubt there's free 3D renders of Pokemon out there. So yeah, no 3D anytime soon.

I don't think I'd ever run across a problem with making action/dramatic scenes. I handle that sort of thing all the time with my other hobby; homebrew game development, side scrolling beat ‘em ups primarily (here’s a video of my work, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ux1ETh5xJ8c). So, in terms of flashes and effects and even background graphics, I'm all set. If there would be any “bump in the road” with those scenes, it'd be due to Pokemon sprites having very few frames. But there's enough ways to go around that, if you're clever enough. ;)

What I really would have trouble with would be scenes where there is NO action. Walking through a city street, having a drink at a bar, etc. Fighting game characters have very few non-tense frames, so something that's as casual as sitting at a cafe would look like a brawl's about to ensue. That would require the heavier editing, in my opinion.

I appreciate your feedback though, thank you El Cid.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
Darth Mongoose at 4:02AM, Oct. 23, 2010
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You are thinking about this the wrong way. There IS a point in making a comic nobody will ever read, but only if you care about comics. If you want the result of making a comic, the praise and attention, without caring about the medium at all or wanting to spend any effort whatsoever, you are the comic equivalent of what all those people on X-factor (Or ‘American Idol’ or any equivalent show) are to music.

If you want people to read your comic, you have to put in effort. Drawing is not a magical power. There is no mutant X-gene that makes you either artist or non-artist. It's a skill. Any artist you see who is good, has spent years learning and sharpening that ability. You don't see a guy play an awesome guitar solo and think ‘I want to be famous like him!’ and then decide that learning to play guitar is physically impossible because it's too much effort and expect to become famous playing the kazoo! I can play a bunch of basic chords on a guitar. I could probably be better at playing the guitar if I spent more time on it, but I'm more passionate about other things, like art. I don't hold any serious ideas about ever being praised or noticed for my guitar playing. I may be a pro illustrator now, but when I started doing webcomics in my teens, I wasn't that great, and just drew for fun to share with a handful of friends, and my webcomic is still a sideline hobby now, I don't really make money from it, I just do it because it's fun and good practice. It takes me 6 hours per page, and doesn't make a profit, but I like doing it!

You have to put in some kind of effort to really make your comic stand out if you're primarily interested in having it read and noticed. If you can edit sprites, why not make your own? There are original sprite comics out there. Diesel Sweeties being an example. If you can draw a stick figure, well, xkcd is largely just stick figures. Both these examples stand up on their great writing and original concepts.
Better yet, if you're already good at making games, why make a comic at all? If you have a talent and/or passion for games, make your story into a game with a storyline or something. With comics, like anything else, you get out more if you put in more. Technical problems are not excuses to not try harder, they're rather obstacles to find a workaround for within your means.

/grumpyartistrant
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
NickyP at 1:06PM, Oct. 23, 2010
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Someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed, this morning. Pretty sure you're overreacting there, bud.

Someone
If you want the result of making a comic, the praise and attention, without caring about the medium at all or wanting to spend any effort whatsoever, you are the comic equivalent of what all those people on X-factor (Or ‘American Idol’ or any equivalent show) are to music.
Amazingly, you've mistaken the reasonable expectation of feedback with being an attention whore. And what is this about “not caring about the medium?” Where on earth did you even get such a notion? What is this about me not wanting to spend any effort? What the hell are you talking about?? Did you just skim through my posts, then started typing like a madman based on two to three words I've said?

Someone
Better yet, if you're already good at making games, why make a comic at all? If you have a talent and/or passion for games, make your story into a game with a storyline or something.
Pardon my french, but exactly who the hell are you to tell me how I should and shouldn't branch my hobbies? Whether or not I make games is irrelevant, if I want to make a comic I'm damned well allowed to. I'd think you would understand that, having previously written a sermon on how one should do something because they like doing it, and not because they want praise. If I'd like to tell a story via a comic versus in-game cutscenes, that's my prerogative.

I'm really not one to sink to the level of “flaming”, but you come off as a real prick right now, pal.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
El Cid at 4:12PM, Oct. 23, 2010
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Didn't sound like she was being a prick; just offering you some encouragement to try something a bit more challenging. If you enjoy spriting, then you should do a sprite comic. Nothing wrong with that. But if your main reason for doing a sprite comic is because you “lack drawing talent,” the better solution would be to learn how to draw and then make the comic you really wanted to make.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
NickyP at 12:32PM, Oct. 24, 2010
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Accusing me of being an attention seeker while proceeding to baselessly undermine my character is hardly “encouragement”, sir.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
Darth Mongoose at 5:03AM, Oct. 29, 2010
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NickyP
Accusing me of being an attention seeker while proceeding to baselessly undermine my character is hardly “encouragement”, sir.

My apologies, good sir.
You said you want feedback, and I have given feedback. Yes, this sprite comic may collect a following of sprite comic readers and they may comment on your work, and give the feedback you desire so. If this is your aim for your work, then you will probably fulfil it. I was merely raising the idea that you could potentially aim a little higher and earn more interest (ie. readers who aren't just sprite artists who read other sprite comics), maybe even money (because you can't get ads or merchandise going on a comic based on a franchise using art you don't own without risking legal action), by coming up with an original setting and characters, original art and with a bit of inspiration and extra effort. If you're just making this comic for fun, not because you want attention, why come and ask on the forums if anybody would be interested in it? If you're just making it for love of comics and art, you shouldn't really give a care if people are reading it, or what I say for that matter.

I don't really see a problem in trying to get attention for your work. I do art as my job, and an awful lot of my work is publicising myself and trying to get more people looking at my stuff. If a tree falls in the forest and nobody's there, does it make a sound? If a piece of art is on a wall and nobody sees it, does it have value?
A few people make art for themselves, but most make art to be seen and experienced by others. There's no shame in that, yet I seem to have touched a nerve through the mere suggestion that you might be making a comic because you want people to read it, based on the fact that you said yourself you wouldn't want to draw a comic nobody would read (even going so far as to call it ‘pointless’). My suggestions were all made in the spirit of opening your mind to the possibility that you could potentially make something enjoyed by many people. I apologise if I took your statements the wrong way, if you are just making this comic for your own enjoyment, then disregard everything I have said and just enjoy making your comic.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:08PM
NickyP at 11:37PM, Oct. 29, 2010
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Apology accepted.

I've decided for the time being that I'll focus on continuing my game development and La Vie a la Mode. While a dramatic, “serious” Pokemon comic may be something I'd like to do, now's not the time. Besides, I really do enjoy drawing my current comic.. it's a great way to express my current thoughts and feelings, and my friends/family enjoy reading them as well.

On that note, I'd also like to apologize. I'm sure I didn't exactly come off as a friendly person myself, and I'm sorry for that. :)
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:16PM
BffSatan at 8:04PM, Nov. 16, 2010
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There's a pokemon called infernape? Who the devil thought up that thing!?
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:21AM

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