So in today's episode of "what exciting stuff I animated this week" ...nah, just kidding, let's not go there this time. (We do have all generic monsters covered, by the way. All that's left are dragons, elemental creatures, balors, sharks, eels and such. You know, the *hard* and *important* ones. But that also means you could run a game of ADOM and not run into a lot of static sprites at this point, which is great :)
Instead let's focus on the Player sprites for a change. As I mentioned some time ago, having modular animated sprites opens up the road to something we've always wanted to see in the game - more detailed player character representations. I've been doing workload calculations for that this week, I've also have some prototypes ready, so let's take a look at what's in the pipeline. We're showing this off early because we're interested in your opinions on the matter. :)
First of all, for pure gameplay reasons we'd like the PC sprite to show actual armor worn. Right now the "torso" and "legs" parts are merged into one sprite and are based on class rather than equipment. So you have a "robe" for casters, "leather" for lighter classes and "plate" for warriors and such. This can be very misleading if you're a warrior but your chainmail just got eaten by a Rust Monster.
With the planned changes finally you'll be able to see that shiny new scale mail you just donned. A personal highlight for me are Thick Furs (also seen in the gif below), finally proper attire for ADOMs barbarians :)
But we won't stop here. We'd also like to make the weapon sprites more informative. Currently they represent the type of weapon used, like "clubs" or "short swords". We did that to limit the workload, ADOM has close to 200 different weapons so that's a *lot* of sprites to develop. But now thanks to Photoshop scripts created for the animation sprites, we can use a similar technique to prepare & export weapon sprites in a timely fashion. Finally you'll be able to distinguish between a regular cudgel and a massive spiked club :)
Last but not least - the characters' looks. Skin tone and hair color are an integral part of character backgrounds in ADOM, so now we finally have an opportunity to accurately represent them. And while we're here why not add a few extra hairstyles later on? The possibility is definitely there :)
For me personally it's a very exciting thing, years ago I used to draw my characters while playing ADOM, modifying the drawings as I picked up better loot, or recieved particularly gruesome critical hits. It's a throwback to the good old days in a weird way ;) Hope it makes your ADOM experience better, if only because of the more accurate game state representation.
Yes, the changes will address the character always having the same gloved hands, and make some races (lookin' at you, trolls) beefier. The dwarf in the gifs already gained some muscle mass.
Still considering stuff like helmets, boots and gloves. The option is very much there, since there's only one PC sprite on the screen at most, it might as well be very detailed. You'll be looking at it a lot after all!
'till next clubbing, as the trolls say.