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Photoshop sizing and dpi - Chamse - Apr 10, 2011 07:18 AM

Hey everyone,

My name is Martin and im new to game development and design
Im trying to design my first character and the hero of my game,

I could use some pointers as to how i create my the sprites.

Lemme go through my process so far.

I created a 3000 x 3000 document, with a 300dpi in photoshop.
then drev the character like i wanted him.

Then i used the animation bar and animated a simple walk scene.

But obviously i dont want it to be 3000x 3000 pixels, so once my walk cycle was done, i scaled my character down to about 70x70, and the result is kinda MEH,
the eyes of the character became WAY to blurry, and the iris kinda meltet with the eyebrows..

SO, what am i doing wrong? should i start at 70x70 ? lower DPI?
Would it yield a better result if i made it 256px and then scaled it down in the code?
am i scaling it wrong in photoshop? (i just scaled it down but changing the image size)

RE: Photoshop sizing and dpi - ThemsAllTook - Apr 10, 2011 08:40 AM

There are many different interpolation algorithms that can be used for scaling (nearest neighbor, linear, cubic, and a whole lot of other specialized ones). I haven't used Photoshop in years, but Gimp lets you pick one when you scale an image; I'd presume Photoshop does the same. You'll likely get nicer results from pre-scaling than doing it at runtime, but that depends on the effect you want to achieve.

Scaling bitmap graphics is unfortunately a messy business that often gives unpleasing results. You may get better results if your original size is a multiple of the scaled one, but I usually prefer to either draw at the target size, or use vector graphics in the first place.

RE: Photoshop sizing and dpi - SethWillits - Apr 10, 2011 09:15 PM

Scaling from 3000x3000 down to 70x70 is bound to suck with that kind of needed detail. Out of 9 MILLION pixels, you're telling it use less than five thousand pixels and make it look good. It just ain't gonna happen. You can pick between different interpolation algorithms as ThemsAllTook says, but the bottom line is it still isn't ever going to be perfect.

The best thing you can ever do is design exactly for the resolution you're going to display them at in the game. With the retina/double-resolution displays, you can pretty safely create at twice the intended size and shrink by 50% where needed. That generally works pretty well.

RE: Photoshop sizing and dpi - AndyKorth - Apr 11, 2011 06:12 PM

For such small artwork, you will want to create your art at the size you'll be displaying it. This is especially true for sprite based games.

Go look at some small sprites- try googling for "FF6 Sprites". The images aren't just shrunken pictures, they are carefully constructed to make the most of the small size of the image. Certain features are exaggerated in order to emphasize certain parts of the character or to differentiate them. When you only have 3 pixels to work with for an eye (maybe 8-12 for your 70x70 image), just shrinking a photo is going to give you a blurry mess.

Good luck!

RE: Photoshop sizing and dpi - Chamse - Apr 12, 2011 01:27 AM

Thanks for all the replies guys,

I messed arround with Illustrator, and it seems like if i create a document at 72dpi, and 64x64pixels, then copy the vector into photoshop, its already at the desired size (64x64) and i wont have to scale it down or anything.

I guess that will be the way forward.


RE: Photoshop sizing and dpi - Anomalous Interactive - Apr 13, 2011 10:35 PM

Have you tried doing pixel art?

Painting each pixel precisely to the size required?

its an awesome technique to perfect but it will also teach you how important it is to take your image size into consideration

RE: Photoshop sizing and dpi - liquidminduk - Feb 19, 2015 10:30 PM

I myself would start at 140x140 then scale down from that (double is usually the norm)

As ThemsAllTook mentioned, be sure to watch your scaling algorithm, as this can change the way things look immeasurably