Monday, December 26, 2011

Custom SVG Icons in Illustrator [Tutorial]

The default Adobe Illustrator Artwork file icon.
Usually when I want to get something done, I get it done right. In this case, it bothered me why Adobe Illustrator allows you to save files into SVG and SVGZ format, yet used the default Adobe Illustrator file icon. This makes them impossible to distinguish in Windows 7 since their properties and appearance is shared with standard Adobe Illustrator files. This is especially annoying if I want to download SVGs off Wikipedia or other sites (like here since I distributed some works as SVG) and the files are mislabeled. All the icon changing guides didn't help in this matter and after 2 days of dabbling with the registry, nothing was working.
However, I now have a solution.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Zap Ace + TREZ Home

Oh, and here is the Zap Ace drawing from the stream finished. Yeah, it isn't all that accurate or at least not as accurate as I had hoped. I think the shading came out well though.
Oh, and about the new TREZ homepage. The coding is almost finished and is starting to look very close to what I intended. I have to be very picky on this. Only concerns now would be a decent PHP content management system so I can make posts and manage the content on the site. Fusion/Cute News are the same thing and rather unimpressive. Now Blogger's current post features is miles ahead of anything I've used so far. If I could use an editor like the one I'm using to write and manage the content on the site, it would be much more ideal.

Monday, December 19, 2011

My TREZ Livestream Today

I got on the TREZ Livestream toady in part of the TREZ Winter Festival 2011. I drew in vector for my bit for about an hour. I had never streamed before and I heard form GM that all the pro Starcraft players use XSplit Broadcaster for their streams. I was very impressed by how flawlessly it worked. I streamed near-perfect quality at 1920x1080 for my stream. I would like to do more of this in the future.

I drew a Zap Ace enemy from the Megaman Star Force series. Drawing well is still tough for me, but here's what I ended up doing on the stream.
I started with this.
And got this far on the stream.

I have my own stream where I may do these sort of things live. Check it out at LiveStream.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Winter Break: What to look forward to

My winter break started and here's what may happen in that time.

First, the new website is being made. I'm liking what's been made so far so as long as I supervise the work, the layout should be done soon. Putting it up on a paid host would also be interesting.

There are also more items in the Zazzle shop GM and I have. Have a look and buy what you like.


Browse other gifts from Zazzle.

Friday, December 2, 2011

TREZ Home Page revamp imminent

I may have mentioned it before. but for a class project I will be designing a new TREZ layout. This new home page will make the site easier and quicker to use. So basically instead of never using it, it can be used quickly. It's all part of trying to keep the TREZ name alive through consistency and overall decent design. When I actually have a full mock-up, a few people will be selected to critique its usefulness. I'm hoping I could get someone to actually code it since I have no experience in HTML or any of that. I wouldn't want a project like this to be my first attempt at coding either.

Relating to the redesign, I recently purchased and activated my copy of Adobe CS5.5 Design Premium. It came with an extra CD with resources. Turns out there are DOZENS of pixel fonts in there, one being the Hooge font family. Originally, I had been using that font on some of the TREZ forum images. It turns out it's a commercial font and I was using a cheap copy. The one on the CD has lower-case letters and is a highly legible font. I've removed the copies and installed the real thing on my computer. I hope the Hooge fonts will serve TREZ well since I'll be using them more from now on.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Great new background!

As I'm working on a school project, a background I was working on suddenly seems amazing. Just looking at it reads very "Battle Network" style. It fits so well with their design that I'll probably have to start using it everywhere until a better one comes out.

It's made entirely in Illustrator.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

PET Concept: Final Render

I think I've worked on this for enough time. I've completed the front part of the new PET. With the screen on top, the presentation is essentially complete.

I think this has been a very involved and amusing project, nonetheless. Lots of skills learned and it was fun going through with it.

Rockman EXE 6 6th Anniversary

It's that time of year again, the 6th one to be exact. Today marks the 6th year since the release of the last main entry into the Rockman EXE series. I couldn't get anything done to commemorate this day but I'd still like people to remember that 6 years ago, there was excitement among the fanbase and I was part of it. The first game I followed along as it was developed and waited for updates. And clearly the best Battle Network game. This year, there's nothing to look forward too, sadly. Even Star Force was released during November. I hope next year will have an entry into one of the series around this time of the year. It's sad to see that only after 6 years, interest has died to down to a whisper.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The PET OS Home Screen UI

As you may have seen from last week's video, I wanted to create a conceptual PET based on today's mobile look and if a Battle Network game were actually coming out November of this year, like before.
I think the PET Home Screen is finished and this is what I came up with.


I've put a lot more attention into the UI recently since it says a lot about what a device like this could do. I hadn't studied UI design so I had a lot to cover and I think it may have even interfered with the quality of this work. Keeping in mind it would ideally be implemented in a game environment, I borrowed elements from today's mobile UIs like iOS and Android operating systems while still keeping it relevant in-game.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Co-Op Battles in MMBN6

It's amazing that even as the game reaches its 6th year since the original release, that new things still emerge from it.

This time, using assistance from Prof.9, I was able to get only one battle to load when playing against another person in multiplayer. Using a cheat, it's possible to have them fight on your side, though with odd, annoying side-effects. However, it is possible for both players to fight together, even for a while. Another possibility would be to allow players to fight with AI-controlled opponents. Even so, there are still restrictions to what is allowed since multiplayer battles only allow uncompressed sprites to load. I hope some of the bugs get fixed so the potential of this could be further explored.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Quick draw in Illustrator

Still kind of at tech demos. Here is a video of me drawing a PET concept in Illustrator.

Maybe I should finish the concept just to see it really nice and thoughtfully created.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Transfer Adobe Program Preferences

So I finally figured out how to transfer settings and preferences from Adobe programs. I don't know if I missed out on something but upgrading is a hassle, especially when you have to set up your preferences over and over again. Last time I couldn't figure out how to transfer my settings. Adobe couldn't help much either. But it didn't happen this time! I want my workspaces, my gradients, my shapes, etc to be accessible even if I can't open the old programs anymore (since apparently legitimately activating old programs is nearly impossible)

I work mostly on Windows so I don't know how Macs handle this. Your settings can be retrieved in Windows 7 by going to the following folder on your main hard drive: C:\Users\[NAME]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\
There, you will find folders for each Adobe program, some even have Settings in the folder name. If you've already ran the new version, open that folder (Ctrl+Double-click) and open the old version's folder. The structure should be nearly identical. Look for proprietary Adobe files like the Brush and Gradient files and copy them over to the new version. Worksapces can also be transferred this way. Once you've done that, open your new Adobe program and enjoy working like before!

This saved me quite the hassle of updating from Photoshop and Illustrator CS5 to 5.1. Yeah, it's a big deal.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Last Batch: Unused Models

This is partially what I was trying to accomplish. Being able to manipulate the models in game, I could take the unused 3D models from Star Force and use BN5DS as a virtual emulator to process the files. The models should be correct. Shading is a little different and could be an emulator error. While the model format may have been the same as I anticipated, the motions format isn't. Only the the idle animation can be loaded and I'm very certain there are more. A general-purpose BCA0 animation viewer would be needed to progress further. These models, out of proportion and fairly inaccurate, are ideal test subjects which could have been used to explore the game's barely-developed real-world and cyber-world environments. The foot and buster texture, sharing the same textures as the Mega Man model from the previous post, have no animation textures. It is possible these were used for battle models.

Anyways, here is the last batch: the proper idle animations for the 4 character models found in Star Force.

Next step: GIFs


I also created animated GIFs from the mysterious unused animations. They are very interesting and it's a shame the models are stiff 90% of the time.
 

Monday, October 31, 2011

I found it! Unused Gold!

That was rather quick. After searching Youtube the other day, I was looking for the scene in Mega Man Battle Network 5 DS where Mega Man actually moves. My theory was that whatever was in the message must be telling the 3D model to move. Today I decided to look for it. What I found was surprising.

It turns out there were several unused animation, though not what I expected relating to this canceled BN5DS 3D remake project. Here are some screens of the unusual never-before-seen animations. Once I find a camera code and get Protoman loading, I'll make a video showing off this wonderful find. I'm still really excited.
The default animation from the scene.
Mega Man's battle animation.

Colonel's battle animation.

Mega Man and his forms have strange "punched" animations.

One of Colonel's animations is him waving his hand across slowly.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

3D Star Force Symbol in Photoshop [Video Tutorial]

Two tutorials in one day? Amazing how that worked out.


Short video tutorial explaining how to make the shape in 3D. Actually really easy.

I'm more amazed at the video quality. Well, now I actually have the hardware to watch and record 1920x1080 video. I gave CamStudio another shot and tried a custom-made Xvid codec. Amazing results! The video I uploaded was only 41MB. Videos I had uploaded before were ALWAYS 100MB and up for decent quality. I think this will suffice for the time being.

Creating a Bump Texture in Photoshop [Tutorial]

So recently for a class project, I found myself needing a slight bump texture. I'm talking about the texture some electronics have for grip. It has tiny little bumps used for grip and kinda look like gravel. Unfortunately, I couldn't find a tutorial or texture that I could use. I figured out a way to make one using Photoshop using a vague little filter called the "Custom" filter.

I'll explain...

Latest fangame logo: Legacy

It seems all I really do is make fantastic logos for promising fangame projects now. Of course, more recently I've been undoing the work I made before.My most recent work is the logo for Mega Man Battle Network Legacy.
They got a name change, which is now the shortest I've worked with. I took this opportunity to try some new things with these game logos. Centered. Blurs. A bend effect that isn't overdone. I'm liking the way this came out. Color choice is still a little iffy.

Now, I wanted to do center because I wanted to stylize "Legacy" like that. Subtle bend with slight 3D effect. Had to pen my own type for that part also since it's very important that the spikes appear on the left and right. In another project, I'm starting to use blurs since I found out they can actually look nice on export and I actually have the hardware to render them now. Blurs everywhere: on the emblem ring, the background squares, the wave glows.

I took my inspiration from the Rockman EXE Anime logos this time. I aimed for this "heavy, elaborate 3D elements" look. I like this logo. It really sets it apart from the other fangames.
I wish the Project Legacy team well.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Drawing in Illustrator [Tutorial]

This is the skill-building tutorial I was mentioning all along. Using Illustrator is ideal for drawing since it is a vector-based program. But drawing and shading more complex designs can be difficult. There is a way to draw more efficiently and make future edits easier.

Learn advanced techniques and basic concepts in Adobe Illustrator. Here is what the final drawing will look like.


Hit the break to start.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

MMBN6 Navi Cust Editor updated

GM updated his MMBN6 NCP editor recently. It's been posted at TREZ and if I'm not mistaken, everyone should be able to download it.
http://s6.zetaboards.com/The_Rockman_EXE_Zone/topic/8621191/1/

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

My new desktop

So I'm liking my new desktop background. It's basically a combination of backgrounds I made with extra noise gradient techniques. I really want to make a good tutorial on this since it produces a nice grunge look. Remember I was inspired by the subscreen background from Rockman EXE: OSS. Combined with the color schemes used on the graphics I made for TREZ, I get this.
Dimensions:1920x1080

Sunday, August 21, 2011

US Mobile Market Share Infographic

I made this infographic based on comScore data of Mobile subscribers in the US. It looks neat, but there's something I don't like about it...

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Star Force Official Complete Works Arrived!

The book arrived and it's in my hands!
Well that was quicker than I expected. My copy of the Mega Man Star Force Official Complete Works arrived today! It's very shiny and impressive just looking through the pages. Unfortunately, I didn't get to read every page, or even get through them all. Almost at the same time, I got an overwhelming amount of priorities for the next couple days. Suddenly my weekend looks very busy. :(

I'll get through this book, soon. So far, I'm very impressed at the detailed working stages to completion. Some things are rather simplified, but the understanding is that they are ALWAYS on a tight schedule, and they have to make great work, fast.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Mega Man Star Force OCW almost here!

I've waited a long time for this. Since the Battle Network OCW released in March, I've been expecting this to arrive soon. Now is the time. My copy of the Mega Man Star Force Official Complete Works should be arriving on Monday. It's probably later than others since I placed my order slightly later.

I can't wait any longer. Monday is my day off so I'll have plenty of time to read every page.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Upcoming Illustrator Tutorial

If there's one thing I'm getting good at that matters, that would have to be Illustrator. I've learned how to do so many things that not knowing seems almost impossible. The veil of uncertainty in some effects has been lifted and everything is obvious.
So my next tutorial will be on making those shiny numbers Battle Network games have historically used for all 11 unique titles. I've made some quick samples of some numbers I made in that style. It really isn't very difficult anymore and the result is a very interesting and unique style. This tutorial should also be simpler. That last tutorial was very lengthy and had poorly planned instructional thumbnails.
Shininess is trendy right now so this fits the times for now.  And at least I figured it out before giving up. That's an achievement.

Monday, July 11, 2011

New Photoshop Background

Lately I've been messing with Photoshop's Noise Gradients. Yeah, apparently there's an option for that. It lets you make random-colored gradients. I used this tool to make interesting streaks which can give something the impression of a grunge look.
I thought it was interesting and I might use this new background somehow. After all, everything Google-owned seems to be changing. They changed my blog editor! It's different, but not perfect so I hope they make some adjustments later. Youtube is also testing a new layout. I knew those fake transparent "background" layouts would be worthless soon. I'm thinking of making a new Youtube background but only once the layout is finalized. It seems to be missing to many things.

Oh, and the background.
There is still much untapped potential with this "Noise Gradient".

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Star Force OCW pushed back again!

Well it looks like this book will never come out. I got an email saying that my order for the Mega Man Star Force Official Complete Works has been pushed back... to January 13, 2012! Why the sudden 6-month delay? I've almost had enough with the delays considering the book was supposed to be out LAST YEAR. The Battle Network OCW at least came out in March after a couple delays. This is just silly. Why won't Udon just say it won't come out at all and stop adding months to the supposed release?
Bad Udon!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

MMBN5 Cutting Room Floor article written

I just finished writing the article on Megaman Battle Network 5 for The Cutting Room Floor. Check it out!
http://tcrf.net/Mega_Man_Battle_Network_5

I think it's fairly thorough and mentions that Wireless play feature. I've seen how they write articles on this website, though and I think it needs more comparisons. Primarily version-differences and beta screenshots. This also means I can move on to the BN6 article. Obviously I have tons of content for that.

Speaking of beta, I found something interesting while digging through old Capcom websites. Not only did Dr. Hikari's mugshot in BN1 used to look hideous, Max Mode is actually used. I haven't played the game recently, or any multiplayer, so I didn't know. Apparently Max Mode shows up during multiplayer. I didn't know. But it had to have something to do with multiplayer since BN5 brought it back exclusively for Crossover Battle.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Easy Bevels in Illustrator (Tutorial)

All right, here is the Adobe Illustrator tutorial I said I would make. The goal is to create accurate, shiny, vector bevels on text in Illustrator. I mean nice, enhancing bevels used on a good design, not blotchy, over-beveling done on bad designs. I've thought about the process and it's actually quite simple. Perhaps there already exists another tutorial out there on the exact same thing, but I've reached the conclusion in my own way with little to no help from others.

The final product:


You will need:
Adobe Illustrator (I'm using CS4)
A simplistic, squared font
Basic knowledge of tools

Ready to start the tutorial? Full tutorial after the break.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Another MMSF3 save post

I very recently put up a Megaman Star Force 3 save yet here is another one. I had to spread apart the releases so they would be noticeable. Anyways, you can download the save where the game is just recently completed. I'm obviously much farther than that now, but my current progress isn't worth posting. I won't post another one until I get all the icons on the second file. That means a couple months at best.

But here, game complete.
http://www.mediafire.com/?7akrojxxkxc75vf
I must say, Hard Mode has been really fun. I don't trust that its difficulty is legitimate however, and I doubt the difficulty of enemies. So, the electric dragon viruses are silly-fast. There's no way anyone would purposely make an enemy that fast. In other words, they could have been made more difficult in other ways. The mummy viruses are also stupidly overpowered. Yes, I know it's supposed to be hard, but there should be no way a single enemy should be able to kill you with an endless combo. It's not a feature - it's a bug and it's annoying as hell. The only reason I didn't make a cheat was because it's only happened once and they're rarely alone, which is when they kill. As soon as I defeat Sirius in the game, I'm taking the cheat off since it's nearly impossible to win anything past that point (did I mention Apollo Flame is also completely broken and unwinnable?) Almost!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Upcoming Adobe Illustrator tutorial

A couple months ago I said I would write an Illustrator tutorial. Well I've finally figured out how to make shiny vector bevels in illustrator. They look quite nice as you can see.
It's kinda small (click to see the full version), but it's a specialized bevel that many fancy vector logos use, especially on games. No Photoshop tricks here. Getting a precise, gradating bevel is possible in Illustrator and I will write the tutorial soon.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Next MMSF3 savegame post

I was going to post this save before all the things from a couple weeks ago got out of hand. Anyways, I made a backup of my game's save when I got to the part before the Rogue minigame. So now both minigames can be accessed with the saves I provided. Also, remember this is my hard mode run.Weak enemies move as fast as their difficult counterpart and they have lots of HP. The HP part for viruses makes sense since I can't even imagine how pathetically weak they were before. The bump in difficulty makes the game much more enjoyable, especially at that part of the game.

Well here is the gamesave.
http://www.mediafire.com/?vootl01d5zimtd7

It's already a .SAV so it discards comments from the original Gameshark format. I forget exactly what save is what, so I may be mistaken.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Quick MMSF3 save post

I'm really enjoying my Megaman Star Force 3 playthrough. I'm glad my first Noise was Cygnus because a complete lack of formed brotherbands puts me in a position I would rather not take.

Anyways, here is my save up to this point. It's after the first WAZA minigame but before the second. Maybe some neat hacks can come from that. When the game was released, I actually hoped the game had some debug options leftover which would activate this minigame at your own will. Unfortunately there is nothing left, but at least this save exists now!

Hey, download it now!
http://www.mediafire.com/?bvtywxr8i9dexuy

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Finally Replaying MMSF3

After months of little interest in starting the second file in my Megaman Star Force game, I finally found my DS and set everything up. Prof. 9 made a hard mode cheat months ago and insisted I try it out. So I finally got around to doing that and now I can play the game on a much harder difficulty. It's refreshing since I haven't played in months and it's just at the right difficulty for me.

This gives me ideas for my MMBN6 hard mode patch, which I will work on mostly during my break. Basically, the hard mode cheat speeds up all the enemies and gives them more HP. Very early in the game, it doesn't make that much of a difference except that you can't one-shot all the enemies anymore. I was unfortunate enough to encounter Taurus Fire Omega early in the game only shortly after the first chapter when I had about 200HP. Died in one hit because the attacks are just crazy fast. Speaking of fast, when I encountered the Wibbledee viruses (the Wide Wave attack) in the second area, I was quickly annoyed. The hard mode cheat speeds everything up in a way that breaks the Wibbledee virus. Its invincibility time becomes almost infinite and therefore becomes quite an annoyance to deal with. After the third 5-minute battle I decided to make a cheat that kills only the Wibbledee virus in battle.

94000130 FFFB0000
921C82A2 00000008
121C836C 00000000
D2000000 00000000

94000130 FFFB0000
921C80FA 00000008
121C81C4 00000000
D2000000 00000000

94000130 FFFB0000
921C7F52 00000008
121C801C 00000000
D2000000 00000000

Not to seem like a cheater, but it was getting really annoying and relied only on luck. Basically my code checks if Select and Down are pushed and if the virus is the Wibbledee class. If the conditions are true, its HP becomes 0. It's been a lifesaver since I've been using it.

Speaking of cheats, the cheats file Prof. 9 sent me also had a code that turns off edge-marking and enables anti-aliasing. The game looks great this way. If you see in the screenshot below, this is how the game normally looks like.
I think the outlines are distracting since they're a dark gray and appear very sharp and blocky against the background. The outlines also stop at the screens border which is unusual. With the cheat on, the outlines are removed and the shapes blend with the background. The graphics look much better this way. Too bad the emulators won't render the effect properly. The main thing I'm getting out of this playthrough so far is how big a difference a speed and HP increase makes. I can't wait to play MMBN6 on a harder difficulty after all these years.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Hard Mode Patch discussion topic

I have not yet given up on my Hard Mode patch. In fact, I'm planning on how I will finish it this summer. My summer break begins mid-June and I'm excited to work on this project again.
I've made a topic at TREZ so people can discuss what I should change about my Hard Mode patch. I will also play Prof. 9's Megaman Star Force 3 hard mode hack using a cheat he made. That way I can get a feel for the increased difficulty, especially after a long break from gaming in general.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Incomplete sprite in that new Ace Attorney game

So GM wanted to rip sprites from Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth. It was a tricky process with almost no documentation to help. He made a tool that ripped the backgrounds and character sprites. But I noticed something on Edgeworth's sprite.

It's the last frame in one of his walking frames. It seems they left in a previous version of the completed sprite in their. If you zoom in, you can see how they went from an outline with basic coloring, to the finished product. The head is already detailed since they just paste it on and work on the rest of the body. Shapes like the fluff in his shirt are crudely blocked in as a solid shape, then carefully shaded. Hands get shaded in. His left arm gets noticeable and proper anti-aliasing. It's an interesting find since I've been looking at spriting tutorial websites to help spriters on TREZ. I was correct for the most part, but this incomplete sprite sort of confirms what they were saying. Just outline the parts that need to change first. Then fill in the colors, and shade consistently. Seems like a lot of work, especially considering his sheet is about 6000px long and each line of animation is 88 pixels long and 256 pixels wide.

The sprite rip topic is at The Spriters Resource.
http://www.spriters-resource.com/community/showthread.php?tid=17344&pid=374907#pid374907

Friday, April 29, 2011

MMBN6 PvP match!

Yeah, I played Greiga Master over my local network to a couple of rounds of MMBN6 battles. I was winning most of them but I lost the one we dual-recorded. I recorded my side of the match and he recorded his. It was a very fun experience!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Megaman Legends 3 Japanese flash site stuff

So the Japanese site went live yesterday and I've managed to snatch the goodies. It was a lot more difficult than before, but I got all the images worth noting. You can download an archive of images and sounds I ripped.
http://www.mediafire.com/?om7q5f5w9w0p547

Here are some images worth noting. All the backgrounds and images are very clean and high-res.



Thursday, April 21, 2011

Megaman Legends 3 videos appear

So a bunch of Megaman Legends 3 videos appeared today. Looks like the game is coming along great. The game is visually impressive. Kinda puts away the shoddy, blocky graphics of the N64/PS1. Clearly the game was envisioned to look this stunning, and futuristic. Really, if they made a Battle Network game this impressive, it would definitely be a day 1 for me. The vision of the game designer can truly be created with the powerful technology found in the 3DS.

Also, this Wii successor rumor stuff has started to make more sense. The rumors are more realistic and if there is going to be an official announcement soon, I can't wait to see what is real. This next generation of console games will be amazing. I can tell.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

MMBN:OCW scans

Hey, scans form the book finally surfaced. ;)
http://s6.zetaboards.com/The_Rockman_EXE_Zone/topic/8721490/3/

I could get more pages. It just gets kind of difficult.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Mega Rock Patch quickfix

Well thanks to the good people at SomethingAwful, their LP turned up an unintentional bug in my patch. Apparently the regular version of Bass was acting like Bass BX. There were some errors in the way the AI was setup. Thanks to Prof. 9, the problem has been quickly resolved and it's a rather quick fix.

If you want to quickly fix it yourself, simply apply the change yourself.
08827ABD: D0 -> D1

I have also updated the patch in general, this time adding alternate colors for non-chips on the custom screen. V3.04 of the patch can be downloaded now.
http://www.mediafire.com/?b42esbtcsi4dhs8

I really want to thank Prof. 9 and the people doing the LP. I would personally present them with this patch but alas, paying for registration is absolute lunacy - especially on no income. Still, I encourage them to encourage me as they have done before. ;)

Also, 300th post!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Megaman Battle Network Official Complete Works is here!

I finally got my copy of MMBN OCW in the mail today. It's so awesome. I never expected to own a Battle Network book so incredibly detailed. And the cover is holographic. That was a nice surprise. All the pages are very glossy and finely printed which was probably really expensive to print. I read the entire book today and here are my trivial observations.

  • There is a typo on some page where Chinese candles or lights are mentioned. "Heating" is misspelled.
  • On Duo's official art page, the alternate Duo chip image still has a Japanese label.
  • The "BassAnly" chip is called "Bass Anomoly" in the book several times.
  • On Topman's artwork page, his chip is also shown translate. It reads "Grrr" as opposed to Japanese characters.
  • Shadowman's special chip is called "Image Slash" in the book when it is called "Split Up" in the game.
  • The book admits that "Spoutman" was an error in localization. In MMBN6, it should have been "Aquaman", "Aqua Cross", and "Aqua Beast". Eraseman's localized name remains unchanged.
  • Some of the comments are actually much more aggressive than anything that appeared in the game such as Gyroman's operator, Charlie telling Mayl that he'll meet her in 10 years and Tora calling Lan a "smart ass".
It was fun reading about the design process. I got the impression that the design team was always rushed, yet seemed professional and enthusiastic. I liked hearing about the connection to the pixel artists. It's a lot of work for them and I felt they should have gotten more recognition. I wonder how much more content and detail the game would have had if they were given more time. Hearing that specific chips couldn't appear as detailed as they should have been left me thinking.

Overall, the book is brilliant. I learned and relearned things I was forgetting. I will treasure this book for as long as I can. It is a tome of indispensable artwork and information I desire.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

More Battle Network logo stuff

Yeah, I'm still learning design stuff and I decided to revisit this whole Megaman Battle Network logo thing. I understand it differently now and I was able to recreate the Megaman Battle Network 1 logo. Yeah, it's quite awful. Here's my version made entirely in vector and edited in Photoshop, as the official one was clearly made in.
The first Megaman Battle Network logo (recreated by me).
I don't think it's great. It seems lazy and unprofessional unlike the Japanese one. The outline turned out blocky which seems unintended. "Battle Network" is written in what was probably their first and only font choice. It turns out the font is Helvetica Rounded Condensed Bold Oblique, just as I suspected. The roundness doesn't really fit in my opinion and the kerning is bad. Then there's a distracting blue sphere in the middle for some reason. Later titles put the emblem in there. The actual emblem feels reversed. There shouldn't be any blue and it contrasts oddly. The yellow ring should have been larger and it isn't. The purple is consistent with the Japanese logo, at least. The entire thing is overdone in generic Photoshop effects - some which don't really help.

But anyways, I thought it could be remade to be truer to the Japanese logo, yet preserve some of the elements that are consistent in the localization of the Megaman series. Here is my attempt.
A redesigned version of the MMBN logo.
The green color is there and the emblem has a notable yellow ring around it. I ditched the rounded font for a squarer font. I like the notable spikes in the outlines around "Megaman" a lot more than the round ones. It doesn't feel as bleak and cheap as the original one and I think I can use the vector outlines I used to make this on future projects. I'm always taking fangame logo requests - or rather, I request my services. It's a shame to see the old, shoddy logo from the first game come up almost every time a fangame is being made. It just feels 2001.

Oh, and here are the source files. Maybe people can make their own logos more easily now.