In this small essay I am going to talk about Pixel art and how it how it has been used to create some amazing games over the years. I will also talk about its downfall over recent years.
Pixel art is a type of digital art that can be done on a computer. It can be created through the use of software where images are edited on the pixel level. We have had many 8 – bit and 16 – bit games. So many games have been influenced by pixel art.
The term pixel art goes back many years. The term had first came around in the 1980’s. However, in the 1970’s a man called Richard Shoups was making pixel art through a system called the SuperPaint system. The 1970’s may of been the advent for pixel art computer games that we play to this day. Some people do say that pixel art has copied from other art techniques such as, mosaic, bead – work and embroidery. Also the art style pointillist, the painter uses small dots to make up and image. With pixel art, the painter uses squares. Pixel art started to rapidly decline when 3D – capable home consoles came out. For example the PlayStation. Over the decade pixel art has started to comeback in the shape of retro game revivals such as Contra 4 and Mega Man 9. These games had felt like they had been made 20 years earlier. The Nintendo DS was a great canvas for pixel art.
In the early 2000’s there wasn’t a high demand for pixel games as they didn’t really have a big place in the modern day. Overall pixel art can only really fit one area of games. Where 3D games and 2D games can both have very high – definition graphics.
Pixel art is now making a comeback as it isn’t just video games that are wanting pixel art, companies are employing art work for their own stand – alone work. The company EBoy who are pioneering graphic design company that specialised in pixel art for advertising. They have been doing this since 1998.
When thinking of pixel art, the first Super Mario Bros is the first game to come to my mind. The full game is made of pixels. The aim of the game is for the player to get Mario and Luigi through the Mushroom Kingdom and rescue the princess from Bowser. Super Mario Bros was released on the 13th September 1985. It was published my Nintendo for the Nintendo Entertainment system. There was 4 designers who had worked on Super Mario Bros. They were Shigeru Miyamoto, Hiroshi Yamauchi, Koji Kondo and Takashi Tezuka. Super Mario Bros is the best selling Nintendo Entertainment system game by sales.
Another great pixel game is Mega Man X. The story within Mega Man X was very good. The game was based in the future with futuristic explosions, difficult bosses and very good visuals. Mega Man games haven’t really made as big as an impact as the first one did. The thing I love most about Mega Man is its futuristic pixel art style.
I would say that pixel art computer games have been a huge success. Pixel art allows artist to create whatever they want to make. Games that were made in the past using pixel art have influenced so many games that have been made today. I think pixel art games visually look amazing which i think is a key part of a game. Developers have freedom when making games that are pixel. I would say that pixel art games have a child – like feel to them. In most pixel games there is no blood and gore, its just colours. Pixel art games grab the attention of many people at all ages because they all look fun to play.
Animation using pixel art looks very good as well. Mario’s jumping in Super Mario Bros was very basic but I didn’t bore any players because it was well animated. There are many benefits to using pixel art animation. The most basic pixel art animation can look stunning in the way its animated.
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Techopedia.com. (2018). What is Pixel Art? – Definition from Techopedia. [online] Available at: https://www.techopedia.com/definition/8884/pixel-art [Accessed 26 Feb. 2018].uy