TerraZone: Shoot for the Stars Devlog 2: The Sky's the Limit!
Sky Varian is our main protagonist of the game. You can choose to play as male or female Sky on this adventure. They are a high school student entering their junior year at Nostal Falls High School.
Sky and Seon are longtime best friends, and Seon tries to persuade Sky to join their new TerraZone club.
The characters of the game start off as hand drawn penciled and inked pages, that then are colored in Adobe Photoshop.
When scanned in, the drawing is cleaned up and prepared for the coloring process, where the lines, flat colors, and shades are separated from one another. Afterwards, the layers are merged and ready to be butchered!
We split up the characters into multiple parts to be puppet animated, such as splitting the arms, the face, eyes, hair, and so on. Anything we anticipate will have a moving part is separated as its own layer. After the character is separated, we then move the character to the program “Spine”, where the character is then rigged for puppet animation.
Each layer is carefully taken into account as to how each bone is parented to one another. For example a “hair bang” is parented to the head, since when the head moves, the hair must move with the head, and the head is parented to the body as when the body moves, the head moves. A mixture of different constraints are used to create controllers for the puppet, such as IK and path constraints, and even some frame by frame animation can be found as well, such as the mouth animations.
We have so far tested out the default animations for full Game Maker integration, and will be using Game Maker’s “frame blending” technique to switch between animations in the visual novel parts of the game.
Next week we will be talking further about the Visual Novel Aspect of the game and how we’ve been putting it together.
Thank you for reading, and we look forward to seeing you in the next one!