Feature Highlight – In-Game Avatar Animations

Hey guys! Jason here again. So I wanted to talk about our faction avatars because they were really fun to make and I think they add a lot to the visual aesthetics in the game. Each different team in Stardust Vanguards has an avatar. You’ll see them in the corners in our video! And these little avatars react to what’s going on in the game. Is it gong overboard? Eh, probably! But they sure were fun to animate. Of course, they are quite simple really, but they do add a lot of much needed motion and drama outside of the actual gameplay. Meaty animated GIFs below.

Default/Calm Animation

This is your default avatar’s expression. Just calm and blinking. Too cool for school you might say.

Avatar_Blinking

Firing Bullets

When you’re firing your machine guns you’ll see your avatar animate appropriately with each shot lighting up his/her helmet. We also fire off this animation off when your shield takes damage. The light envelopes the characters helmet, of course, in this GIF it just looks like he’s at a rave.

Avatar_Shooting

Dying

Eventually you’ll end eating a bullet in the face. It happens. And your avatar will react just long enough before the final explosion does him in. How sad! But taking one for the team is a reality for vanguards! It’s pretty messy. Some of those frames were rather grisly to draw. That skull was a little scary, too. Yikes!

Avatar_Dying

No Signal

Of course when our valiant player is dead and gone you’ll only see static. No signal. The finality of death is overwhelming.

Avatar_Static

Respawning

Oh, but who are we kidding. Your mecha will boot right back up and your pilot will respawn right back on the battlefield to go get revenge… assuming you still have lives left! And yes, I have a penchant for old school command prompt boot-up screens. Don’t be hatin’!

Avatar_Spawning

The avatars add a fun little addition to everything going on in game and each different color faction has their own character and set of animations, each with subtle changes and their own personality. For instance, our red team’s character isn’t shocked when he dies, he just looks really pissed off. Things like that. Sure it will probably go unnoticed by a lot of people but these little details were fun to add in as a developer. A few fun evenings animating mecha pilots, what’s not to love? Besides, it’s the little things in life, as the saying goes!

Last but not least, here’s a little spritesheet of how everything looks together.

avatar_green_spritesheet_demo