Editing the “easy” Arena SET files
(remember sets are several images tiled into one)
I mentioned that right now I’m “mostly” focusing on doing the easier images in Arena’s SET files. By easier, I mean contain simple angular designs that have minimal curves and diagonals. Why? The reason is that with these extremely low resolution art assets (most tiles are only 64 pixels by 64 pixels), curves and diagonals don’t look like smooth straight lines. With my Minecraft project (PinkertonCraft), I expressedly made almost ALL the art clean linear horizontal and vertical line combinations with no curves even implied.
Unlike that project, in the ADP, I simplified most curves and diagonal lines but did not eliminate them. My goal with this project is cleaner textures but not abstract images.
Palette Files, oh my!
The first thing I do with an “easy” texture is try to picture the rough color scheme that I want to use. Since many of these type of images are brick or stone walls, that means deciding the color of the bricks or walls. I gauge if I am going to want lighter or darker colors from sight and then decide which color(s) already existing in the image to use. I have two reasons for doing this: the first is that it helps maintain a little integrity to the original unmodified image and second, it removes the issue of colors being changed when imported and converted to the original palette colors (the import tool approximates to the closest color if one doesn’t match a color in the palette file).
NOTE: Arena uses a palette file for images. This means that exact colors for each pixel are found by referencing a separate file (palette). Consider a palette file as a real hand held paint palette: like a painter, Arena draws/paints it’s images using the colors from the palette. The whole reason to do this was to save space on the disk which was a concern in the early 90’s.