Discovering Sprytile

I finally started on the 3rd edition of Unity in Action at the end of last year, so between that and work I don’t really have much bandwidth lately for any other projects. I haven’t abandoned Eschatown, but I’m probably not going to do any work on that game until spring. At that point I’m planning to quickly wrap up the art (especially character sprites done with Character Creator 2D), and then release it.

I have been thinking idly about future projects after that, but frankly I want to keep focused on my book until that’s out of the way. Still, I have been thinking I really liked the turn-based combat system in Eschatown, so I’ll probably start spinning out some brainless dungeon crawlers built around that. In addition, I’ve been thinking I’ll dust off my old first-person RPG and actually finish/release that.

Both those plans fit into a larger plan to regularly release small turn-based games on mobile. Recently I found myself wishing there were more old-school turn-based games on my phone, and I realized I should make some. The games will be pretty light on monetization, pretty much just ads, since I want to crank them out rapidly as a hobby. I even realized I could start a Patreon, since there are probably other people who would like a steady flow of light RPGs and strategy games on their phones.

While noodling on what I might develop I came across both Crocotile and Sprytile as an interesting option for the graphics. These are tools (one standalone, and one an addon for Blender) that are used to create 3D objects out of pixel art tiles. On the one hand, pixel art tends to be more accessible for indie developers, and I have a large library of pixel art asset packs. On the other hand, I have so much experience with 3D graphics, so leaning on my 3D skills will help my games stand out. Sprytile looks like a great way to leverage my pixel art library to create 3D graphics, so I’m planning to experiment with that tool to see if I can devise an economical and appealing art style.

As already mentioned, I won’t actually be developing these games (let alone setup a Patreon to support them) until at least springtime, but I’m going to start experimenting with Sprytile a lot sooner. Hope it goes well!

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