Artistic styles used in computer games. Photorealism

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Task 1

  1. Artistic styles used in computer games.

  1. Photorealism

Photorealism is a type of painting where you copy a photo that you have took with a Camera and then paint the photo exactly as it is in the picture. People go out with a camera into areas where they want to remake in their game and so they take a lot of photos and then copy it to make a realistic surrounding in the game.

Uncanny Valley is problem with making animations to realistic where people start to look for flaws in the realism rather than watching the film which can take away from how well done the Piece is overall not just in graphics.

  1. Cel Shading

Cel shading is a type of non-photorealistic rendering designed to make computer graphics appear to be hand drawn and it is often used to make a cartoon like graphic and it is used in many games as it can offer a nice image.

  1. Abstraction

Abstraction is departing from reality by in depiction of imagery in art. It is departing from the accurate representation and it can be slight, partial or completely different to the image. All games are abstract as they create a simpler, fairer and more empowering world than reality; some games are closer to reality than some such as Forza Motorsport as they try to be more realistic where as some games are far from realistic and so are completely abstract.


It is making a certain part of an image larger in comparison to the rest of it to exaggerate that part of the image and it is commonly found in anime and Manga in shows such as Dragon Ball Z and Naruto. It was created in japan originally and has since spread across the world.

  1. Computer Game Graphics

  1. Pixel Art

Images are created and edited at the pixel level and they were used in many old mobile games and calculator games as they are very easy to make and they are made by filling in the dots in a pixel graph. Games made with pixel art are Snake, Pac man, Fall down its usually a gif or PNG and is created using Photoshop, paint or sprite editor.

  1. Concept Art

Drawing a idea, Character, Object and Scene before making the final product and then allowing people to judge the drawings and give suggestions and criticising your drawing so to make the final product the best it can be and it allows other people to visualize the item or character.

  1. Texture Art

Texture in a painting is the feel of the canvas. It can be based on the paint and its application, or addition materials such as metal, Metal and leather. Texture in painting stimulates two different senses, visual and tactile.

Problem games are still in 3d

Bump Maps in 3D make the object look more 3D

D. Background Graphics e.g Walls, Forests, Clouds etc

Graphics that the players do not see until they are not there and they still have to be created and players are demanding them to be more realistic.

It is Graphics that are used to fill in the background so to make the game realistic and more appealing to the eye.

  1. In-game Interface e.g heads up display

It’s an interface the player has that tells them all the information they need in a simple way without having to break the immersion of the game e.g. Points, Health, number of lives and position on a map. It used to be on the left hand side of the screen but it took up to much space and so was good.

Messages by turning screen red for being shot or a grenade logo on the screen for when a grenade is near instead of telling them using txt.

  1. Print Media and Art e.g. Game packaging, Box cover, Manual and poster.

Material that is printed for the game

The Front cover needs to give potential customers a reason to buy the product and learn what it is about.

  1. Pixel (Picture element)

Its measured in Pixels per inch (PPI) Pixilation is when we zoom in on a picture we can see the pixels.

Higher resolution = Larger file size

72 Lower Resolution = Smaller File size

Higher Resolution=More Pixels.

Lower Resolution = Less Pixels.

You can’t bring the quality of an image up if the original wasn’t high quality you can only go lower. Lower resolution for sending on the web and high for Posters and things.

  1. Types of digital Graphics

  1. Raster Images (bmp, gif,, tiff, jpg, psd)

Made from pixels and use different file types. They will pixelate if zoomed up on and file size is generally high for Example: Photographs The software you would use to make them is Photoshop, Corel Draw, Fireworks.

  1. Vector Graphics

Vector Graphics is a graphic that is made up of points and then they are joined together to give u an image also it is not pixelated and so it can be stretched, shrunk and rotated but will not lose any quality.

  1. File extensions: bmp, png, gif, tiff, jpg, psd

It is the three letters after the filename and it lets the computer know what type of file it is.


The BMP file format, sometimes called bitmap or DIB file format (device-independent bitmap) is a image file format used to store bitmap digital images, especially on Microsoft windows. It is also a Raster Graphic.

Large file size


Png= portable network graphic

Portable Network Graphics is a raster graphics file format that supports lossless data compression. PNG was created as an improved, non-patented replacement for Graphics Interchange Format (GIF), and is the most used lossless image compression format on the World Wide Web. Png also support Palette based images colors. Greyscale images (with or without alpha channel and RGB images (with or without alpha channel)

It was designed for transferring images on the internet and it is the most used lossless image compression format on the World Wide Web.

  1. GIF = Graphics interchange format

The Graphics Interchange Format (better known by its abbreviation GIF is a bitmap image format that was introduced by CompuServe in 1987[1] and has since come into widespread usage on the World Wide Web due to its wide support and portability.

The format supports up to 8 bits per pixel for each image, allowing a single image to reference its own palette of up to 256 different colors chosen from the 24-bit RGB color space. It also supports animations and allows a separate palette of up to 256 colors for each frame. These palette limitations make the GIF format unsuitable for reproducing color photographs and other images with continuous color, but it is well-suited for simpler images such as graphics or logos with solid areas of color. file:seven segment display-animated.gif

  1. TIFF (originally standing for Tagged Image File Format)

Is a file format for storing images, popular among graphic artists, the publishing industry, and both amateur and professional photographers in general. As of 2009, it is under the control of Adobe Systems. Originally created by the company Aldus for use with "desktop publishing", the TIFF format is widely supported by image-manipulation applications, by publishing and page layout applications, by scanning, faxing, word processing, optical character recognition and other applications. Adobe Systems, which acquired Aldus, now holds the copyright to the TIFF specification. TIFF has not had a major update since 1992.

  1. Jpg/JPEG =Joint Photographic Expert Group

Lossy compression for digital photography (image)

The Degree of compression can be adjusted and it allows a selectable method between storage size and quality.

JPEG usually achieves a 10:1 compression without losing very much quality.

Jpeg is the most common image format used by digital cameras and is the most common format on the World Wide Web.

Psd = Photoshop file

Supports Layers

Large file size and used for image manipulation etc. not the final file type.

Normally saved as JPEG or PNG etc.

Owned by adobe.


Lossy = some image information is lost

Lossless = No image information is lost

Lossy examples: Low compression High Compression

Modern digital cameras can take very detailed images (12 megapixels) this results in larger file size.

Larger than the rest of our technology (internet) can deal with.

We need to reduce the image size. What will happen to the Quality?

Image compression may be Lossy or Lossless.

Lossless compression is preferred for archiving

Lossy methods are suitable for images such as photographs.

Methods for Lossy Compression: Its losing some of the information in the picture.

7.Image capture


Scanners not the best option when getting images but they are used when there is only one of the images. It is not good as things like tablets and things are a lot better. Scanners usually come with things like adobe Photoshop and you can use a very high resolution scanner to get a high resolution image. Some suppliers are Epson.

Digital Camera

  • Camera Resolution – Megapixels 2-12mp

  • Images stored electronically- Flash Card

  • Images can be deleted

  • Blink Detection

  • Different settings(Low, med, high resolution)

  • Edit images on the camera

  • JPEG for most cameras.

A digital camera (or digicam) is a camera that encodes digital images and videos digitally and stores them for later reproduction. Most cameras sold today are digital, and digital cameras are incorporated into many devices ranging from PDAs and mobile phones (called camera phones) to vehicles.

Digital and film cameras share an optical system, typically using a lens with a variable diaphragm to focus light onto an image pickup device. The diaphragm and shutter admit the correct amount of light to the imager, just as with film but the image pickup device is electronic rather than chemical. However, unlike film cameras, digital cameras can display images on a screen immediately after being recorded, and store and delete images from memory. Many digital cameras can also record moving video with sound. Some digital cameras can crop and stitch pictures and perform other elementary image editing.

Factors Affecting the image

  • Good lighting

  • Proper focus

  • Image Clarity

  • Shooting at the highest resolution.

Graphics Tablet

A graphics tablet or digitizer is a computer input device that enables a user to hand-draw images and graphics, similar to the way a person draws images with a pencil and paper. These tablets may also be used to capture data or handwritten signatures. It can also be used to trace an image from a piece of paper which is taped or otherwise secured to the surface.

Capturing data in this way, either by tracing or entering the corners of linear poly-lines or shapes is called digitizing.

The device consists of a flat surface upon which the user may "draw" or trace an image using an attached stylus, a pen-like drawing apparatus. The image generally does not appear on the tablet itself but, rather, is displayed on the computer monitor.

Some tablets are intended as a general replacement for a mouse as the primary pointing and navigation device for desktop computers.

Graphics Tablet is used for signatures and it means people you cant draw with mouse can now just write on a tablet with a special stylus to make it come up on the screen.

8. Optimising

Finding the file size and image quality

Target image output:

Where is the image going to be used?

Web? – File size has to realitvely low – image quality will be low

Print? – file size not really important – image quality can be high

Image resolution:

Number of pixels per inch > file size

If the number of pixels per inch increases the file size.

72 pixels per inch – Web (low quality)

300 pixels per inch – Print Quality (can be higher)

Quality of image (Scalability) – Pixilation

Image dimensions:

Width x height

(must be scaled in program like Photoshop)

Smaller image = smaller file size(if scaled down properly


File size required

Lossy lose information (colors

Lossless do not lose information (original image can be retrieved)

Image bit depth

Number of bits per Pixel (8, 16, 24)

File size – quality of image (scalability)

By increasing the amount of bits per pixel it increases your fill size substantially.

Storage of image assets:

  1. File size

Where will the image be used?

On the web it needs to be smaller to be downloaded quicker. Printing doesn’t care about fill size and it can be higher quality.

  1. File naming conventions

Some companies use naming conventions for their digital graphics. They need this because theyre can be a lot of images and a lot of different photographers. It will be easier to find for the person.

  • Topic of image

  • Date

  • Quality

  • Photgrapher

  • Version

( c ) asset management (asset = image)

  • They can organise their images when they have many of them.

  • They usually use a database to keep track of images.

  • Thye user can add details to the image so to keep track of it and find it easier.

  • It offers thumbnails, Facilities and comments.


Task 2

My game is called: All Out Racing

It is a racing game in which it is based on destruction for example the race tracks will all have shortcuts accessible through smashing buildings and fences also cars can be be brutally destructible.

The Characters are customizable and so players can make their own character and name, the clothing and appearance can be chosen from a number of choices give to the player and also they can customize their attributes to make them better at certain things over others.

The Characters are:

Image 1: Game Cover - which presents the game to the public by using graphics such as my logo and in game images such as the types of cars available in the game, the back of the cover will also provide information about the game such as the number of players in each race.

Image 2: Race Lap time board - which will present the players lap time and how it compares to the rest of the players in the race.

Image 3: Main Menu – This provides players with shortcuts to certain parts of the game such as the career or options menus and this essential in a game, the background image will be of in game play in the game.

Image 4: Speedometer/ Tacometer – This will show the player what speed he is currently at and also what his top speed, it will also show what revs he is on.

Image 5: Logo - this will a graphic which will represent the game to the public and will be the main graphic to be remembered by players, it will be used to promote my game through the internet. It will also be used on my game cover as well as my main menu.

Image 6: HUD – This is the graphic which will be used in game to provide players with the right information needed such as their position and speed in the race, it will contain the lap time board and speedometer/tacometer.

My naming convention:

I will file them using words to describe them and what quality they are such as

Game Cover High.jpeg

Which would be used to file my game cover in high quality.

Using this name convention it will allow me to efficiently find my images when they are needed and also allows other people to find the images quickly, and if they don’t know the exact name they can describe it which will find it.


Description of Task

Time Required to complete

Deadline /Deliverables


Brainstorm what digital Graphics to produce.

2 Days

Early October

Create a document outlining the different images I must create this task


Mood Board for the Digital Graphics

1` Day

Early October

Create a collage of images defining the topic of the game and the subject of it.



1 Day

Mid October

Create a plan describing the different tasks and the deadlines and the outcomes.


Thumbnail sketches and concept drawings

2 weeks



Produce digital graphics

2 weeks

Create images in Photoshop for digital use. Usually scanned images are used


Get another person to review it.


Write a short report on the legal and Ethical considerations to be considered.

3 days

Explain Legal and Ethical issues regarding digital graphics and games using examples and explaining how this will affect my work.


Task 3

Evaluate the whole process from brainstorming to image production. Evaluate each step fo the assignment. How well the assignment went and what I would do differently. Get someone else to review your work. Quality (compare to commercial game graphics)

1 week

A document reviewing and evaluating my work, my opinions on different tasks. Where I could have improved as well as a third party opinion on my work and some feedback.

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