You know, I hate sprite movies, but... somehow, this worked.
You know, I hate sprite movies, but... somehow, this worked.
Lotta improvement, I liked how the situations kept changing, made it all very dynamic and interesting to watch. I'm not a fan of puns really, but a lot of it seemed pretty clever, and, well, the title makes it clear that it's going to have puns, I can't really complain.
Aside from that, line-work was pretty clean, backgrounds were pretty well-done, it was all pleasant to look at. Animation is pretty smooth, but it kinda lacks most of that fun bouncy movement that I like, it was pretty stiff... but, for what it was, it was good. Nice job, keep on improving.
Well all I can really say was that I really didn't enjoy this too much.
The first problem was obviously in the visuals themselves, and that's practically the biggest thing in a cartoon. The characters, backgrounds and just the artwork in general looked incredibly flat and two-dimensional, I could barely sense any depth in anything. The characters were all line-tooled and when they moved around it was extremely stiff and the motions just seemed awkward. Occasionally it looked okay and had a nice flowy look to it when you used easing on the tweens, but the rest of the time it just looked cheap and off, it was simply unpleasant to me.
This issue showed especially when the characters were running, there was no bouncing motion or really anything to show that force was being put behind the movements. Sometimes the perspective got all distorted, like when the camera was zooming out of the two on the planet for one example. Also the lip-syncing, it matched with the words they were saying, but it was just one picture for each sound, their mouths kept blinking to different frames. It beats mouth-flapping, but it still wasn't so great.
The colors weren't really interesting, just boring, dull shades and muddy-looking half of the time. I didn't find them appealing.
When they were running from that monster, at some parts when it zoomed in on them it looked pretty good since you put eases on the tweens, but the lack of music, ambiance and overall sound effects in general made it so dead. It was just boring.
Writing was okay but again, kinda boring, everything was so slow-moving and I just wished the whole thing would hurry up and end already throughout the whole thing. Voicing was alright, the robot guy sounded good, the other characters were kinda bland though.
Overall I found it stiff, flat, slow-moving and lifeless, could've been so much better.
Casey, the background artist ~ as an artist, I know that the biggest rule to making anything is that you simply aren't going to please everybody, and that's fair. The beauty of creative media is that it's better for the diverse input it gets.
I can actually agree with you on a few things here. We had a bit of a marathon putting this episode together. I don't know how you felt about the other episodes if you've seen them, but we brought in a new animator and were trying some new things on this one. A lot of 'real life' got in the way and we were cycling the file around a lot of hands. I'd be lying if I said it didn't suffer from this.
That being said however, in a professional atmosphere, you HAVE to learn how to work fluidly with multiple artists, animators, composers, etc. If you can't deal with it, than you're just not going anywhere.
In our case, I'm glad we had this episode to learn our own strengths and weaknesses, and to be honest, I don't think it came out that badly, and I'm glad we had the experience that we could learn from.
That being said, I think it's a silly thing to criticize someone for using the line tool. I could use that logic to say that anyone's work is bad for using the paint bucket tool or hell, even flash itself. Why don't we really get down to business and hand-draw everything on paper like a REAL animator.
Plus, I'll be honest, personally I COULD draw a lot of the environments by hand, (in fact I usually do in concept art, I have notebooks overflowing with art and drawings) but it's really only a stylistic change. When I use the pencil or do things with a tablet, I tend to put more gritty details into it, I use a lot of lines to bring out the shading and such. It has a totally different feel and vibe to it. If I'd done things in that style, than I doubt it'd match very well to the characters or animation. Wonders is supposed to feel very clean and smooth, and yes, simple. We actually agreed on the style in the beginning before episode 1 was ever finished, so that we could sync up our work with one-another easier. We keep to basic shapes and stuff on purpose. Some people don't like that or see it as lazy, but again, we understand that not EVERYONE is going to just fall in love with it, and that's fine.
In the animation, I can't argue with you a whole lot. Me and Joseph animated large parts of this, and neither of us have animated something on this scale in years, so that was a bit ambitious, but we had to if we wanted the episode to get done, because Chris Boe was being bombarded with work, and Mark was busy making episode 4. Like I said before, it was a learning experience, and I believe we're planning on updating the character models in some way after ep4.
I don't know what to say about your sound effects comment, because if you take ANY frame of that sand worm scene, there's at least 2 or 3 sound effects playing weather it be wind, roaring, or explosions.
In the end, I could see us changing up how we work with one another in the future to have a more streamlined result. But we don't have an office where we can easily trade these files, it's all done online between people who never see each other and sometimes rarely hear from each other. On top of that, we want to try to get this stuff out fairly quickly so that there's not a lot of dead space between releases. It's a great experience and I like working with these guys and I'm sure we'll improve over the coming months.
I wish I could give you a better response other than "oh, well oh well, /shrug" but that's really all I can think to say. Thanks for the lengthy review though, I do enjoy reading through all of them.
This was very enjoyable in practically all aspects, very nice art and animation, hilarious writing, phenomenal acting, and it's all short, straight, and to-the-point. I really loved the frame-by-frame, it was very clean along with the line-work to accompany it. To me it was very professional-looking, the artwork and posing of the characters were very consistent and had a nice frame-rate, not too choppy and yet not super-buttery-smooth. Also, you shaded it in, and did that very well.
Obviously you're extremely well-known for your voice talent, but I think you are an extremely talented artist and animator, very nice work!
You sat through so many of the drafts, I appreciate it man. Also your StarNova toon was a good reminder that "Getting better" isn't something the just happens, it's an active pursuit and very intentional. I look forward to both our journeys :)
That had to be some of the smoothest animation I've seen in forever... and though I'm not really a fan of tweens, you did it right. Very slick and stylish, I enjoyed it.
lol I loved this. I love the animation style and the physics you use, the characters bounce around a lot and it's just fun to watch. The line-work was somewhat on the rougher side, but it looked nice in itself and was very unique, most of the voice acting was really nice. What I mostly liked though is that you actually have your own style of art and animation. Dialogue was pretty snappy and nice to listen to as well, very nice job.
Hey, thanks! I'm glad you liked it. I was messing around with the smoothing settings on the brush tool this time around, to see if I could produce a bit of a different style. And the voice actors were a real pleasure to work with.
Hm well I have some mixed feelings, but overall it wasn't terribly bad, and there were definitely some things I enjoyed about it.
As far as the visuals go, they were nothing special, and they lacked consistency. I know this is most likely due to the additional animators, but it's very blatant and it disrupts the overall film. However, some of the frame-by-frame parts were done pretty well and looked very nice. I wish the whole thing was animated that way. But the other parts that were tweeny just didn't look so great.
For voice acting, sonicmega was very good, but most of the other characters just sounded very bland and off-quality. For music, sometimes you had some nice choices, but you should use less copyrighted audio, especially if you're going to put an ad in the preloader.
For writing, it was pretty good, there was nice, good amounts of dialogue and what the characters said furthered the story, sometimes when people use lots of dialogue it just goes allover the place and you could easily skip the scene and not miss anything from the storyline. This one actually had some crucial writing, and I found it pretty lightheartedly funny. You didn't rely so heavily on vulgarity and just pure hatred to bring comedy, you did it nicely and I respected it.
The characters definitely need some more variety. Some of the main characters do, but the rest of them look like Cyanide and Happiness style. At least make them different heights, more colors, different hairstyles, just more variety, it will greatly assist with the visuals. Also, backgrounds were okay.
I didn't really like the ending, I know it's supposed to be like a "to be continued" type of thing, but it ended so abruptly. Maybe there should be a bigger, longer falling action to the episode.
OVERALL it was okay, but there's lots of things that need to be fixed, most importantly, consistency in the animation, better voice acting, and more variety.
I personally thought some of the different art styles each possessed their own charm, though I understand what you're saying about it disrupting the overall film. The next episode will have a more consistent art style.
I made some of the parts tweeny, like King William's movements at the Royal Ball, because I honestly did not see any point in making it frame-by-frame. Some parts like the high-five in the beginning, I could definitely see warranting fbf, while others like simple movements, I thought could get away with a tween.
Yeah, I did go a bit overboard with the copyrighted music, though I thought a lot of the choices fit the scene (despite some of them being just plain horrid like "All Star").
I'd change the Cyanide & Happiness style if I didn't already go 39 episodes with it, so it'd be kinda weird to change them abruptly.
Thank you for your in-depth review.
Line-work and coloring are both pretty clean. Voice acting is not terrible, but in some areas it wasn't very good either. The dialogue was also nothing too bad most of the time.
Now for some negative things, I don't like this animation style. I'm not a fan of the whole "motion-tween-for-each-body-part" thing, I find it very lazy, stiff, and just not very nice to look at. I mean, all the characters just look and behave like lifeless puppets.
The lip-syncing wasn't very good, I mean their mouths go allover the place and it just looks fake, it looks like an obvious, paper-like graphic hovering over their face the whole time. HOWEVER I'm glad there actually IS lip-syncing nonetheless, some people just use mouth-flapping, so it isn't terribly lazy. It just doesn't look so great.
What I mostly disliked was just the overall plot and script... I mean it was lengthy, which is usually nice with videos, I mean I hate seeing all these 15-second things around here, but I thought it was just really boring. I didn't find it very funny, it was so slow-moving and kinda mind-numbing to a certain extent, up to the point where I was sorta hoping that it would end. Also the choice of audio was pretty bad, lots of the sounds sounded very fake and muffled. Audio and atmosphere overall can be extremely crucial to the overall outcome of a film.
It's a shame because I think this has a bit of potential, I like the idea of some guys at a restaurant with strange things happening to them, it could be really funny. I'm honestly a huge fan of pretty basic, typical, real-life plots.
1) Work on the script, make everything snappier, funnier, harder-hitting and less bland.
2) Some of the characters didn't sound so great, the actors should practice a bit more or get replaced, while you're at it get a better microphone.
3) Put more effort into the animation, and if you already are, study the way things move and how physics works. This particular style of animation can look extremely good IF it is done right, and I have seen it done marvelously in videos (seldom, but nonetheless). But the way you do this one specifically just looks totally dated and bland. Have more things going on in the background when they're outside and such.
4) Use better, more clear, lifelike audio for sound effects and ambiance. Music could help to make everything more upbeat and not so dead.
5) You can try making the camera move often, still shots of everything going from shot-to-shot gets tiresome after a while, have it pan or dolly or zoom, rack-focuses, anything, this can severely assist with making the visuals and overall video more pleasing to look at.
Also, there isn't much variety in the characters. I'm not really going to comment on that too much though, since this is already the third installment of this series, it would be weird of the designs suddenly changed. But if you can, make the characters look a bit different, different heights, use of colors, more drastic facial features, anything.
Overall, I didn't really enjoy it. Usually a video will have some sort of aspect about it that I like, but this one was kind of a miss on just about everything. You don't need to take this criticism, it's fine, but these are just my tips on making this whole series better... you may take it or not, that's your choice...
Hm... honestly I was a pretty big fan of this animation and drawing style. I liked the somewhat-messy colors and shading. Character moved around a lot and it was nice and interesting to look at.
Very unique, it's nice to actually see some different stuff around here once-in-a-while.
Well I expected a lot more to happen. All-in-all I generally liked the animation, it was executed nicely. I liked the frame-by-frame parts, not so much the tweens, however I can say that the tweens were done well, for what they were, anyway. Voice acting was really good, probably close to phenomenal.
The problem was, there wasn't enough content in it. It was too short. Plus I didn't really find it funny in the slightest. Good execution, though.
I don't understand why so many people have issues with how short it is. My general feel is, if you're going to waste someone's time with something they may or may not enjoy, best not to waste too much of it.
Artist, animator, game developer, writer, music composer, voice actor, and lover of the universe.
Colorado Springs, CO, USA
Joined on 6/1/07