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Malcolm

2D game - Storm the Train

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Hi all,

I wanted to share the work I've done on our 2D mobile game Storm the Train. We've recently done a big update to the iOS version and launched on Android. During this process I've switched over from Illustrator to Affinity Designer and I'm really enjoying using AD. Almost all of the artwork is now created in AD. 

 

Attached are a launch image for the Android version and a small compilation of screen shots.

post-6493-0-80368900-1439453267_thumb.jpg

post-6493-0-26505600-1439453375_thumb.jpg

 

If you fancy downloading and having a play, it's free and can be found using the following links.

iOS App Store: http://bit.ly/StYK2d

Google Play Store: http://bit.ly/1Mn5hdL

 

Love to hear what you think or answer any questions about the production/workflow. 

 

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Hi Malcolm

 

Well done ! Certainly a good way to show how serious AD can be in the professional world.

Did you import all your Illustrator files and convert them or did you start from scratch ?


OS X 10.12 - AP 1.6.6 - AD 1.6

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Hi yakk,

 

Yes I'm keen to show how AD can be used in games with it's combined vector and pixel workflow it's great! One weakness at the moment IMO is the export persona, but we'll get there!

 

Out of illustrator...

I bashed together a script in illustrator to convert my artboards into named layers with recs inside. Then removed the artboards and saved a copy.

 

Into AD...

Then to make use of the 'create slice from artwork' option I added artwork into the named layers. This way all my naming conventions were retained for export.

 

Artwork

Once in AD however, I often found it easier to rebuild artwork than modify the import which could contain lots of odd transparencies and groups within groups with groups etc. It's also not a bad idea to ask 'how would I do this in AD?' Most of the time the answer is 10 times faster :) All new artwork which is; characters, the players train, 3 new environments, tons of UI etc was done in AD. 

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That's very interesting.

 

And except the export/import part, if you had 2 or 3 things to improve/implement in AD, what would they be ?


OS X 10.12 - AP 1.6.6 - AD 1.6

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That, Sir, is really rather excellent! :D  Top quality work! We've just had a quick play in the office here and I'm sure we'll be coming back to it soon! Kudos to you and your team! :D

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Just wanted to say that I love the game (long time player) and your artwork, great to know that the new updates were done in AD! Thanks for sharing!

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That, Sir, is really rather excellent! :D  Top quality work! We've just had a quick play in the office here and I'm sure we'll be coming back to it soon! Kudos to you and your team! :D

 

 

Thanks Matt. Always happy to share what we're doing and mention Affinity Designer!

If you're ever doing some PR in the office about projects using AD give me a shout, happy to get involved!

 

noidplz - great to know that your a fan of the game.

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That's very interesting.

 

And except the export/import part, if you had 2 or 3 things to improve/implement in AD, what would they be ?

 

ooh now you have me thinking. 

  • As we're a very small team productivity is vital to getting stuff done. So scripting support in AD would be great to make custom actions. That I appreciate is a big ask! 
  • Often I'd like to reference a file rather than embed (place) so it can be used by many files. 
  • Selecting multiple objects by style/appearance would be very useful.
  • I don't think this exists, but when using the node tool I'd like a modifier key which only lets me select/move points and not their handles.

And while we are at it some things I really appreciate in AD during production each day!

  • masking with drag and drop curves onto objects or groups.
  • the erase blend mode
  • the corner tool
  • pixel layers for painting lighting over my vector work.
  • pixel preview
  • user interface and general speed - gaussian blur etc.
  • restore files after a crash or computer suddenly restarting (just happened)

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Thanks for sharing this Malcolm.

 

Serif's developers have some more on their to-do list now  :P

 

Downloaded the game on iOS and the graphics are really amazing (great artist & great tools  ^_^ ) and the gameplay pretty fun.

Very good guys !


OS X 10.12 - AP 1.6.6 - AD 1.6

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Hi Malcolm

 

Well done ! Certainly a good way to show how serious AD can be in the professional world.

Did you import all your Illustrator files and convert them or did you start from scratch ?

Hope Affinity gets a mention, in the credits!


MacBook pro, 2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4 GB 1067 MHz DDR3, NVIDIA GeForce 9400M 256 MB, OS X 10.11.6

 

http://www.pinterest.com/peter2111

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Thanks Matt. Always happy to share what we're doing and mention Affinity Designer!

If you're ever doing some PR in the office about projects using AD give me a shout, happy to get involved!

 

noidplz - great to know that your a fan of the game.

 

I'll definitely chat to Dale who is our press contact guy so he can keep you in mind for any future articles or try to drop your name in to conversations! :) 

 

It's seriously great to see the finished product and be able to play it! Thanks so much Malcolm! :)

Matt

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Absolutely brilliant! I was playing this for about 2 hours last night until my battery died  ^_^

 

 

Hope it's not keeping you from your work :) Glad you like it.

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Yesterday I was working on a possible new icon for the game.

 

Here's how it went. I'll be working on others so we can do A-B testing on Google Play.

 

post-6493-0-92220700-1439548295_thumb.jpg

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Hope it's not keeping you from your work :) Glad you like it.

 

Yes Malcolm, it's keeping me from working !! It's all your fault !!  ;)

Just kidding.

I love the game, really, it's fluid and pleasant.

 

About the new icon, looks really great. All done in AD ? I suppose it's the different steps of conception ?

Are you doing the sketching directly digital or you still have some paper & pen ?


OS X 10.12 - AP 1.6.6 - AD 1.6

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About the new icon, looks really great. All done in AD ? I suppose it's the different steps of conception ?

Are you doing the sketching directly digital or you still have some paper & pen ?

 

 

Hi Yakk, the pencil work on the initial sketches is actually done in Mischief (hope I don't upset any AD folk mentioning it here). I did a little post on this on the Games Faction Facebook page recently. I plan to do one for AD soon showing how I move forward from sketch to the final Icon. 

 

Yes the rest is done in AD. I fist place a 1024x1024 AD file to into another AD file which contains the initial sketch. I'll work on the embedded file copying and resizing (many times) for all different sizes required for iOS and Android. This also helps me see how the icon looks at different sizes. I should probably post a screen grab of the setup!

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Hi retrograde,

 

From the artist side I take my AD exports into Maya for character animation and train construction - textures mapped to quads and added to hierarchies - then exported as FBX models.

 

The game engine we use is our own. It's very efficient as it only contains what we need for our games. We also use our engine for both iOS and Android versions.

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A bit more AD work to share.

 

I'm currently running a Google Play experiment to see which of these icons is most popular - conversion to installs. The 1st and 4th are the current and original icons which are quite similar, essentially a change of character. With these I tried to convey what the game is about.

 

When testing it's a good idea to have contrasting designs, to that end I have designs 2 and 3. The Wei character design is nice and clean, I think she should do well and the Zombies explosion is an attempt to capture the sense of action/mayhem in the game.

 

Let me know what your favourite is and we'll see if we match the findings of the experiment! 

post-6493-0-73323600-1439986637_thumb.jpg

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Hi Malcolm

 

Thanks a lot for sharing your wonderful conceptual work here.

 

The 1 and 4 suit perfectly the game because you clearly see the train in the back.

But I really like Wei, as you pointed it out, it's a very clean design and the contrast between the angel face character and the big bazooka works perfectly.

The zombies are fun but that might be confusing with other "zombies killing" games already out there.

 

All are very well designed though  :)


OS X 10.12 - AP 1.6.6 - AD 1.6

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