Bridging the gap between technology and creativity.
We often see developers managing art assets and code in non-tech-art pipeline, which is not the most effective method. Not only does it lengthen the development cycle, but it also leads to adding unwanted assets to the game engine.
Introducing tech art in the process can bring a significant difference in mobile game development. It improves the development process by streamlining the workflow, reducing the time to market, and maintaining quality. Tech art can optimize the use of game engines by making sure that the assets used in the game are suitable for the engine, ultimately leading to a better gaming experience for the end-user. The introduction of tech art not Only accelerates the development process but also leads to a higher-quality end product. It is a win-win situation for both the game developer and the end-user.
Impact on the timeline.
When developing interactive digital experiences, such as mobile games, having dedicated technical artists on the team can greatly improve the overall process. These artists specialize in creating assets that not only look great, but also function well within the game engine. They work closely with developers to ensure that the assets are optimized for performance, which can save time and increase efficiency. This approach, where the responsibilities of handling code and assets are split between developers and technical artists, enables parallelisation, allowing for faster and smoother production. In contrast, without dedicated technical artist support, the burden of creating game-engine friendly assets falls solely on the developers, slowing down the development process and potentially compromising the final product’s performance and visual quality.
When people have the right skills for the job, they can do it better. This applies to managing game assets, where having a dedicated Tech-Art team can improve the quality of the assets and make the development process more efficient.
Areas where Tech-Art can make a significant difference.
The integration of assets is a crucial aspect of mobile game development, and it involves several considerations such as scalability, reusability, and visual quality. Tech-Art plays a critical role in ensuring that assets are optimized to reduce their build size while preserving their visual quality. Additionally, tech-artists use game engine tools to improve the overall visual quality of the game.
When creating assets, it’s important to maintain guidelines to ensure that assets retain their visual quality and maintain the appropriate size. This can be a delicate balance as the quality and size of assets are often at odds with one another. This balance becomes even more complicated when assets include a mix of different types, such as 2D images, 3D models, sound files, and prefab files.
Once the assets are created, the next step is to integrate them into the game engine. This requires careful optimization to ensure that assets retain their visual quality while being integrated into the engine. As the number of assets increases, it becomes essential for tech-artists to avoid redundancy and increase reusability.
In summary, Tech-Art plays a vital role in the creation, integration, and optimization of assets in mobile games like Rummy Circle. It ensures that assets are created, integrated, and optimized in a way that preserves their visual quality while avoiding redundancy and increasing reusability.
Pop-ups, as they are known in the project, can cause the assets repository to become bloated. These elements are typically part of individual features, and when they are created in an environment where tech-art is not present for an extended period, they tend to maintain the same visual style. The problem usually arises in the way these pop-ups are produced. Questions like, “Can this pop-up be created from existing assets in the repository?”, “Are there any guidelines for creating these pop-ups?”, and “Do we really need a high-quality image to create this pop-up?”, all impact the size of the build. It’s also important to consider the impact on processing and memory, as tech-art needs to be aware of the creation process of assets in order to avoid computation and memory bottlenecks that may occur as a result of assets, due to the limited texture memory in mobile devices and the varying GPU and texture memory capabilities of different devices.
When the content team wants to create a coin animation that rotates, the tech art team must consider multiple solutions. Factors such as budget and team skills play a role in determining the best approach. One option is to create a 3D coin and rotate it, which requires less disk space and texture memory but may require the use of a 3D artist. Another option is to create a sprite sheet animation, which offers more creative freedom but may take up more disk space and texture memory. Ultimately, the tech art team must weigh these considerations and choose the approach that best fits the computation and storage budget while also maintaining the desired aesthetic quality.
TechBusiness metric : Build size.
The size of an app is important because the smaller the app, the more likely people will download it. TechArt can help reduce the size of the app by making sure that the content is created in a way that takes up the least amount of space possible.
For example, if there are 20 pop-ups in a game, TechArt can figure out how much space is needed to create those pop-ups without losing any important features. They can also look for ways to use less space, such as using one image for all pop-ups instead of 20 different images, or using vertex data instead of images.
Things to keep in mind while creating game assets.
In the above example, the assets have not been optimized. They have been imported directly from Figma without any additional processing to reduce their size. The asset size is 929.7KB and the images are not in a power of 2 format. Power of 2 images can be beneficial as they can be easily handled by the GPU and can reduce memory usage.
In this example we have used 2 source assets of size 42.8KB to create the same amount of in game visuals which was created with 929.7KB assets.
The above image is large in size and it is not recommended to apply 9 slice on a large non-power of 2 image which limits reusability and adaptability of the asset.
In the above example we can see that there are confetti sprites baked in the asset and that pattern is repeated in the second assets as well which can be created and composed in the game engine by using raw assets, transform and color can be added in the game engine itself.
Merging text in the CTA can be avoided to reuse assets at various places.
When it comes to asset creation, it’s important to keep in mind that the assets should not only be aesthetically pleasing but also efficient in terms of memory usage. One way to achieve this is to ensure that the assets are reusable and scalable. For example, if you have an asset that is 347 KB in size, you can use it to create multiple tables with different colors and gradients. The number of tables that can be created is limited only by the number of RGBA color selections. Furthermore, these tables can also incorporate gradients to add depth and dimension to the design. By creating reusable and scalable assets, you can maximize the use of your texture memory and produce high-quality content without sacrificing performance.
This is a good example of reusability and optimisation.
52 assets for 52 cards vs 1 asset for 52 cards.
Incorporating TechArt as a critical component of your development team can be a game-changer. The TechArt team at Games24x7 is actively working with the development and content creation teams to ensure that the front-end pipeline is streamlined, efficient and of the highest quality. By combining technical expertise with creative talent, TechArt ensures that every aspect of the content creation process is optimized for quality, speed and efficiency. With a focus on improving the content generation rate, reducing the size of the build, and streamlining workflows, TechArt is a force-multiplier that adds value at every step of the development process.
The TechArt team at Games24x7 is dedicated to finding innovative solutions that balance the technical and artistic aspects of the content creation process. By working closely with the dev and content creation teams, they are able to identify areas of improvement and implement new tools and techniques to increase efficiency and quality. The result is a seamless, streamlined front-end pipeline that produces high-quality content quickly and efficiently.
Stay tuned for more updates and insights from the TechArt team at Games24x7.
Hari is a seasoned professional in the gaming industry with over 14 years of experience, specializing in Tech-Art. He has delivered high-quality games and user interfaces throughout his career and is a Tech-Art Lead at Games 24×7. Hari values delivering optimized art while considering the limitations of the target medium and has a diverse skill set including 3D modeling, UI design, and more can be seen on his LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/hari-wagh-8746b420/
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