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Imported custom character looks jagged... (Solved!)

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 12:45 pm
by ClawOfTheFallen
*Update*
Problem solved! Check bellow for the solution I came up with.

VV---The original issue---VVV

Hello people!
I'm an amateur artist and I have my own personal projects with my own characters and I'm fond of recreating them on any game with character creation features.
I already did them on both ClaDun games and now I'm doing the same on Legasista.
My very first character created for Legasista looked perfect, with a very crisp image. But when I finished my 2nd character and imported her into the game, the image of her character looks jagged... As if her character resolution was scaled down. I'm sure I kept the template resolution intact and I haven't drawn anything beyond the gridlines. It's weird because I have no idea why this happened on this character and not on the first character or any other NIS character available for download on the japanese NIS website.
I really wanna understand how and why this happens and I would appreciate any insight from anybody on the matter so I can avoid this mishap on my future character creations. If I can avoid it at all.

Thanks in advance for the attention.

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 12:55 pm
by neonie
Pictures would probably go a way in figuring out what the problem is.

Save a screen shot on your PS3 and upload it to a site like imgur or Photobucket.

In game: Home button > Picture Menu > Save Screen Shot.

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 2:17 pm
by ClawOfTheFallen
Here you go.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/37z4dpgjwe7ib ... shot_1.png
https://www.dropbox.com/s/y7ti3b2cdhgaa ... shot_4.png
https://www.dropbox.com/s/2va2fxu51487o ... shot_5.png

As you can see, the character looks jagged in-game, but she looks crisp in the edit menu.
I'm completely puzzled cuz I tried enhancing the linework and making sure no pixel was out of boundaries. I'm sure that the .png resolution and quality is good cuz I already updated the character to fix some animation frame issues and the image is still jagged in-game.

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 5:09 pm
by neonie
Hm that's really strange. The only thing I can think (as I'm not really an artist nor do I know much about the technicalities behind the whole thing) but it seems like a problem that would occur with an image if it was to big.

For instance, if you upload an avatar to a website, sometimes instead of properly resizing the image, or telling you it's to big, it'll let you go threw with the uploading the image but look that sort of jagged and off.

So my advice would be make the entire sheet smaller, or make individual body parts smaller (Just a bit smaller)

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 5:52 pm
by nftyw
Maybe check if the jagged areas are being interpreted as a transparent area, move to differently colored background areas and check.

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 7:19 pm
by ClawOfTheFallen
Indeed, it seems like an image in an uneven zoom, creating jagged pixelization.
I played around to check how the character art would behave in different zooms, backgrounds an effects, but there was no difference.
I had considered the possibility of the game interpreting the sheet as too big and resizing it, but I guess that the game would be able to handle whatever is kept within grid boundaries.
It can be a number of things... Her braid might be too big, as they're very close to grid boundaries, but don't touch them. Or cuz I drew her legs longer to pass on the idea that she's taller.
I'm certain that I drew her just as well as the other character, who's character image is perfect in-game. (I refrain from showing him cuz I drew him butt naked, his parts aren't showing, but I drew a tiny butt cuz it's very amusing. Anyway, I don't want to embarass anybody here.)
Guess that all I can do is experiment and observe results. I'm gonna try reducing the braid size on the front and back frames. See what happens.

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 7:31 pm
by Rednal
Did you... hmm... end up doing anything semi-transparent? The system might read that as totally transparent, depending on how it's programmed, and throw it off a bit.

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged...

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 9:37 pm
by ClawOfTheFallen
I just got it!
It has nothing to do with my own character art.
It made no sense... I did this character the same way I did the one before her and he's perfect. That the game would resize template images since it has clear grid boundaries would be crazy, given the logic within this sort of template is that passing the grid boundaries would get whatever went beyond into another part of the body that would end up looking like a floating piece of image. These sort of editors use the whole of the designated drawing space with each area representing what will be placed on a pre-determined area.

Anyway! I managed to discover the problem. And here's how I did it:
I tried changing the skin of my first character, that was fine, with her skin. The result was that it was perfectly crisp on him!
Now I could try and see what I did different on creating the character. One is male, the other female. I tried changing genders (dunno, maybe cuz the animations are different), no dice, same deal.
Then it hit me... When I created this character, I used a pixelized temporary body. I built several characters waiting for me to draw their skins, so tried skinning 2 characters. One with a featureless hand-drawn temporary body and another with a pixelized one with her skin file.
Bingo!
Here's the photographic proof:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/xuf6emnt91p4g ... shot_6.png
https://www.dropbox.com/s/300z5xn8gywpj ... shot_7.png
At "screenshot_6" the character "Lita" was built with a smooth, hand-drawn temporary skin (the featureless one from the create character process). It's clear that she has a much crispier shape than the character I'm using (that used a pixelized temporary skin).
Just to prove a point, the character "Ellie" from "screenshot_7" also used a pixelized body when I built her before. I used the exact same skin I used on the character I'm using in the pictures, proving that there is, indeed, a problem in the game and not in the way I worked in the character.

I guess there is something to do with how the game recognizes character images. Maybe because the pixelized bodies available were made in-engine and the others were properly hand-drawn. How the game recognizes the image behavior in-game must be different!
I guess it's so the hand-drawn skin can be smoothed as the character moves and the pixelized, in-game skins can retain their pixel-art look for genuine Pre-HD aesthetic.

So, In conclusion.
If you're going to import a hand-drawn skin into the game (or any image made from a pc with smooth quality), MAKE SURE you're importing it into a character built with a hand-drawn (smooth) skin.

The only downer is that I'm gonna have to rebuild the character from scratch and make sure she has the right body type to be best compatible with the skin I made.
It's ok for me cuz I built the characters at level 10 (max allowed in the creation process) and I only leveled her up 4 levels. Easilly fixed.
But I fear that whoever might want to resolve this issue with a more experienced character, either will have to scrap the character and rebuild or ignore the jagged art.

I made sure to only play with the other characters I built after they're properly skinned cuz I knew something could come up since I'm still discovering how the game behaves with the skins.

All in all, that's it!
I hope this can be informative in the future. If other people, like myself, insist on having things looking as good as they should. I almost let it go, but I take lots of pride in my work and I was curious as hell to understand why it was so.

Thanks everybody for the attention and willingness to help me solve this mystery!

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged... (Solved!)

Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2012 6:09 pm
by shimrion
In the sprite editor, the bottom left box has an option for display type, that toggles between smooth and pixelly(called sharp in game).

Re: Imported custom character looks jagged... (Solved!)

Posted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:46 pm
by ClawOfTheFallen
shimrion wrote:In the sprite editor, the bottom left box has an option for display type, that toggles between smooth and pixelly(called sharp in game).


While working on other character skins, I happened to notice it. =3
Thanks for the heads up, anyway! n_n