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INQUIRY | What are Your thoughts on Pixel Art Style in Roll20

1614009992
Laerso Ramos
Marketplace Creator
Hello there! After my latest release I have been wondering what are the Roll20 community opinions about using pixel art style assets in your games, like the classic "RPG View" (front up) of the older consoles? - Would you use it? - Under which circumstances would you use it? - Would you give it a try? - Could you give your general opinion about the style? I'm really looking forward you opinions! Cheers!
1614020323
Christopher K
Plus
Marketplace Creator
Pixel art is a really broad term and has such a huge variety of styles in and of itself, so whether I'd choose to use it for a campaign would kinda boil down to the quality and unique look of the assets. Generally speaking though, I lean towards "no, I wouldn't use them". Reason being is that unless an entire campaign, from maps to handouts to tokens to status effects, are done in the same style, there's a break aesthetically that, for me personally, kinda kills the experience. When I'm DMing, I usually ask my players to pull their tokens from a unified generator or a bank of existing sets that works to blend in with the maps of the module I'm running. That's not to suggest I don't like that style of art, quite the contrary, but unless the whole environment and experience is crafted around that style, it would be like playing a video game where the hero is a fully realized 3D avatar, but the world is 8-bit. They just don't gel.
1614021798
Laerso Ramos
Marketplace Creator
Christopher K said: Pixel art is a really broad term and has such a huge variety of styles in and of itself, so whether I'd choose to use it for a campaign would kinda boil down to the quality and unique look of the assets. Generally speaking though, I lean towards "no, I wouldn't use them". Reason being is that unless an entire campaign, from maps to handouts to tokens to status effects, are done in the same style, there's a break aesthetically that, for me personally, kinda kills the experience. When I'm DMing, I usually ask my players to pull their tokens from a unified generator or a bank of existing sets that works to blend in with the maps of the module I'm running. That's not to suggest I don't like that style of art, quite the contrary, but unless the whole environment and experience is crafted around that style, it would be like playing a video game where the hero is a fully realized 3D avatar, but the world is 8-bit. They just don't gel. I understand your point Christopher, thank you for your feedback!
1614026052

Edited 1614026172
Rainy
Pro
Marketplace Creator
Honestly, I was gonna say the same thing Christopher said. Personally, I'd LOVE an entire campaign or even just having an individual module in a pixel art style, but unfortunately, it's a bit of a strong art style visually. And, while most 'realistic' art styles blend together, and even a good amount of 'Cartoon' art styles blend well, there's a lot more variance in differences of pixel art. Most game sprites are usually built on certain dimensions that everything adheres to. It'd be weird having a 14x30 pixel character standing next to an 8 by 18 pixel character, for example. And unfortunately, it's extremely unlikely that any one artist makes enough pixel art to cover most needs for running a campaign. You have to cover monsters, PCs, NPCs, environments, doors, towns, equipment, and depending on if you use magic tokens or not, you have to cover that as well. This makes an issue where even if somebody commits their campaign to a pixel art style, they'd have to not only find a bunch of artists who do pixel art, but who all follow the same standard. And furthermore, if the campaign derails and I have to improvise, I can google whatever I happen to need and find an image in a realistic artstyle, but finding good matching pixel art is tricky. Additionally, if I use the compendiums for D&D to place monsters in, I then have to go hunting down a particular pixel art for that enemy, copy the stats over, and have it on the tabletop quickly enough to not keep my players waiting too long. A module is honestly the best solution to this problem, since it takes a lot of those problems out of the loop, since a module can tailor their art to whatever the module needs. There's not really any issues with having to hunt art down if the module itself provides it.
Using a Final Fantasy combat window for my game sounds like a great idea!  My only concern is players getting confused about what's going on in the story versus where their characters are positioned in the window. . . Or by "front up" did you mean a first-person view of the scene?  That sounds...harder.
1614039794
Laerso Ramos
Marketplace Creator
Rainy said: Honestly, I was gonna say the same thing Christopher said. Personally, I'd LOVE an entire campaign or even just having an individual module in a pixel art style, but unfortunately, it's a bit of a strong art style visually. And, while most 'realistic' art styles blend together, and even a good amount of 'Cartoon' art styles blend well, there's a lot more variance in differences of pixel art. Most game sprites are usually built on certain dimensions that everything adheres to. It'd be weird having a 14x30 pixel character standing next to an 8 by 18 pixel character, for example. And unfortunately, it's extremely unlikely that any one artist makes enough pixel art to cover most needs for running a campaign. You have to cover monsters, PCs, NPCs, environments, doors, towns, equipment, and depending on if you use magic tokens or not, you have to cover that as well. This makes an issue where even if somebody commits their campaign to a pixel art style, they'd have to not only find a bunch of artists who do pixel art, but who all follow the same standard. And furthermore, if the campaign derails and I have to improvise, I can google whatever I happen to need and find an image in a realistic artstyle, but finding good matching pixel art is tricky. Additionally, if I use the compendiums for D&D to place monsters in, I then have to go hunting down a particular pixel art for that enemy, copy the stats over, and have it on the tabletop quickly enough to not keep my players waiting too long. A module is honestly the best solution to this problem, since it takes a lot of those problems out of the loop, since a module can tailor their art to whatever the module needs. There's not really any issues with having to hunt art down if the module itself provides it. Thank you for your opinion, the module idea sounds interesting! Michael T. said: Using a Final Fantasy combat window for my game sounds like a great idea!  My only concern is players getting confused about what's going on in the story versus where their characters are positioned in the window. . . Or by "front up" did you mean a first-person view of the scene?  That sounds...harder. No Michael, I meant the "RPG View" like the old Zelda games, Chrono Trigger and etc.
1614086652
JJL
Pro
Retrograde Minis have been my favorite to use pixelated tokens so far :3 They are really nice looking without feeling too out of place if you ask me
1614089129
Laerso Ramos
Marketplace Creator
JJL said: Retrograde Minis have been my favorite to use pixelated tokens so far :3 They are really nice looking without feeling too out of place if you ask me good to know JJL, I've been doing some pixel art commissions and I think will be adding some stuff here in Roll20. The game module idea Rainy told me looks pretty interesting, since I'll be adding "complete" packs from characters, creatures, maps, npcs and etc.