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Fire Emblem Fates: Azura

Discussion in 'SDT Requests' started by mralphatree, Jul 1, 2016.

  1. mralphatree

    mralphatree Potential Patron

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    Can somebody make an swf of Azura from Fire Emblem
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. stuntcock

    stuntcock Club Regular Staff Member Moderator

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    These are not usable reference images. We need side views. Example, example.

    If you want a dynamic hair SWF then you'll need to provide a vector trace of a very good reference image; I'll take a shot at animating it if you do so.

    If you're asking for a static hair SWF then there are a few modders who can provide it, but they'll probably need better reference images.

    If you're asking for clothing then you'll need to say so explicitly. And provide a more complete set of reference images.
     
  3. mralphatree

    mralphatree Potential Patron

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    Here are more pictures for a static hairstyle.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  4. jho100

    jho100 Potential Patron

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    Seconding this request, are the previous reference images good enough? I can provide more if needed.
     
  5. stuntcock

    stuntcock Club Regular Staff Member Moderator

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    There are a few ways to answer this question:
    • "Is the thread currently located in the Invalid Requests area?"
      • If yes: provide more images
    • "Would you, personally, be able to crop or trace one of the currently-available reference images in order to create a complete SDT hair mod?"
      • If no: provide more images
    • "Are there any reference images available which are better than the ones currently posted?"
      • If yes: provide more images

    There are a few side reference images here, but none of them shows the complete hairstyle. Aside from the deformed chibi image, all of the references have been cropped. That's partially because the hair is absurdly long; it's floor-length when the character is standing, so if it was put into SDT as-is then it would inevitably clip through the floor. It might not even fit onto the standard PNG template.

    You can compensate for the length by finding a shortened fanart version of the hairstyle. Or you can post a regular side-view reference image and ask the artist to shrink it. Or you can try to setup physics rules so that the excess hair will rest against the floor.

    But those ideas are moot until we have a usable side-view reference -- so please feel free to post any useful images that you've found.
     
  6. jho100

    jho100 Potential Patron

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    If the only issue is that her hair is normally much longer, then it's no big deal to have her hair be a bit shorter than it should be, I'm fine with that concession.

    I don't know if this is the right place to ask, since it's in the wrong section now, but I'd like to re-request Azura with a shorter hairstyle using these reference images that stunt posted a while back:

    aqua and nishiki (fire emblem and fire emblem if) drawn by komoreg - Danbooru
    aqua, female my unit, and my unit (fire emblem and fire emblem if) drawn by dashingicecream - Danbooru

    Please excuse my garbage editing skills, but I made a mock up of what the size and shape could look like. The hair can be shorter or longer, depending on how the artist would like to create it, but this is just a general idea:
     

    Attached Files:

  7. stuntcock

    stuntcock Club Regular Staff Member Moderator

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    The main issue is that we don't have a single ideal reference image. We have two images which show a usable color palette. We have one image which shows the full hair in a resting position (but it's unshaded and too small and the proportions are distorted). Most of the images depict the hair strands in a scattered or floating arrangement (because it looks cool) which isn't suitable for a SDT mod.

    Those images aren't sufficient as references. They were provided merely as examples of side views.

    It looks like you've cropped a new reference image in order to create this mockup. If so then you might as well share it.

    I can't do anything with this request at present. None of the images are directly traceable, and @mralphatree asked for a static hairstyle anyways (which isn't interesting to me as a modding project). If you want to see more progress then I'd encourage you to provide more images. Or find a talented artist who's willing to draw something based on their interpretation of the character design.
     
  8. Sausage&Eggs

    Sausage&Eggs Swell Supporter

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    I'm going to provide some images coz I'm a FE fan!
    When searching for FE in general sometimes it is good when look for both names. In this case Fire Emblem Fates Azura and Fire Emblem IF Aqua.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Here is quick imgur album I made of collected art and screens. I didn't use right software for screen caps. If you feel they are good but need more quality I can try again a bit later maybe. They are just from youtube vids
    Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet
     
  9. stuntcock

    stuntcock Club Regular Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks for putting the effort into finding this stuff. None of the images are usable by me (this one is the closest, but it's partially occulted and the shading is inadequate), but an artist would probably find it useful.

    I was surprised that there weren't any ideal references on the usual imageboards, given the popularity of the source material. I decided to search through DeviantArt. The gay stuff was surprisingly tame, the Fire Emblem + My Little Pony crossover OCs were weird, the character is apparently popular among cosplayers ... but I couldn't find any 100% reference images which would allow me to proceed.

    • Fire Emblem Waifus
      • length is workable (if we taper it off at the buttocks)
      • some detail lost to cropping; would need to improvise the hairtips (or borrow details from other refs)
      • image is too bright; would need to reduce the number and/or size of highlights
      • too many gradients and soft brushwork; we would need to reduce the amount of detail (which requires artistic judgment and skill) in order to vectorize it
      • fitting of the strands around the shoulder is weird/lazy; it lacks physicality. Maybe use another ref for that section.
    • You are the ocean's grey waves (Fire Emblem Fates)
      • reasonable length
      • hairstyle is fairly "unified" rather than scattering all over the page
      • not drawn in anime style
      • linework is absurdly detailed; not feasible to trace or animate
    • Azura
      • length is okay; it wouldn't necessarily clip through the floor
      • shading detail is reasonable; the image could be traced and potentially animated
      • hairstyle is too dark; we would need to improvise additional highlights (which requires artistic judgment and skill)
      • hair seems too "thick" to me. The primary mass of hair is significantly wider than the character's waist, which doesn't make physical sense unless it's permanently floating (and/or the character is underwater). It would look bizarre as a rigid static hairstyle, but I can't imagine how it ought to behave as a dynamic hairstyle (floatiness vs gravity; inertia vs elasticity; etc). It would presumably involve a lot of guesswork, feedback, and iteration.
    • Azura
      • different interpretation of the character - hair seems to be much shorter and coloring is different
      • image is heavily cropped; can't do much with it
      • not a true "resting" pose; some hair strands are scattered
      • the brushwork is pretty, but imitating it in vector graphics would be very time-consuming

    If someone is willing to mash together a few of these images into a single viable design and then vector-trace the whole thing, then I could take a shot at animating it. It depends heavily on which version you've chosen, though. I can't animate something which contains 30 separate strands; the animation workload and FPS penalty would be too high. If you're interested then please contact me first; I wouldn't want to see you spend time tracing a design which cannot be completed.

    If someone would like to draw a static hairstyle based on any of these images then please feel free to do so.
     
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  10. Sausage&Eggs

    Sausage&Eggs Swell Supporter

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    Too technical for my small mind. I just provide what pictures I can and hope someone like you work the magic. :D
    Thanks for trying
     
  11. SyntaxTerror

    SyntaxTerror Club Regular Content Creator

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    I took a look over the web and found these references:

    [​IMG]

    The first one has a bad resolution and difficult colour gradients, but the position is nearly perfect (even if it is the wrong side of the head), and the hair is behaving in a good position for SDT and can easily be shortened. A problem is there are no outlines on the back of the hair, but strands are clearly visible.
    This is a canonical reference taken from the 2015's
    Nintendo 3DS trailer. The video can be used to see the accurate movements of the hair.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The second one may look horrible, but could be the best reference to make a dynamic SDT mod (good position, few colours, straight hair, all the hair shown, good resolution, clear lines). The curves on the head make it look strange, but this may be adapted to make something nice. Also, the headwear is easy to reproduce.

    Here is what I did in ten minutes with it:
    [​IMG]
    Admit that it looks better in SDT than on the ref!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2017
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  12. stuntcock

    stuntcock Club Regular Staff Member Moderator

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    Nicely done. Neither one is a perfect reference, but they're definitely better than the rest of what we've found so far.

    Interesting. I was initially planning to handle it mainly through gravity manipulation, but it seems more like an elasticity effect combined with high-mass inertial links. The only foreseeable problem is the the hair will look somewhat odd when the character is moving backwards.

    That's something that the original designers and fan-artists never need to worry about; they can just make the girl stride forward resolutely and allow her hair to stream elegantly behind. But we need to deal with reciprocating motion, so I'll probably make the rigging more aggressive (i.e. less floaty; more rigid).

    Also: this shit is so much easier in Unity. Instead of using a rigid attachment to the skull, you can just slap an effector onto the scene and then you've got a permanent "dramatic wind" effect which blows the hair (or clothing, or cape, or etc) in the desired direction. You can script the wind strength to vary over time, so that the hair will flutter slightly even when the character is idle. You just need to ensure that the wind is blowing in the appropriate direction.

    Welp. That's probably arcane gibberish to 99% of readers, and there's no need to obsess over the technical details at this stage. We can test and fine-tune the physics later.

    Agreed.

    I actually don't like the shading on this version of the headwear very much. It's a bit too dark (why is a white cloth darker than the adjacent blue hair under equal lighting?!?) and the big flat shaded patch seems lazy. We have several usable references for the headwear, so I'll probably borrow one of those instead.

    The forehead-to-shoulder strand looks weird to me, so I'll probably replace it with a section from another reference image. I may also shorten the entire hairstyle; I'll need to see vectors on the canvas (i.e. properly fitted around the ear and neck) before I decide.

    If someone wants to get involved with vector tracing then please contact me or reply to the thread. I wouldn't ask you to trace the hair strands (because they need special treatment for the sake of animation), but you could tackle the headwear, ankle+thigh accessories, or the necklace. It's an opportunity to learn a skill and make a creative contribution to the Undertow community.

    If any contributors or fans of the character (@mralphatree, @jho100, @Sausage&Eggs, et al) would like to offer suggestions, criticism, or feedback then please do so. I'll start tracing in a few days, so I'd prefer to settle any concerns ASAP (before they'll require revisions or re-work). If you'd like to submit an enhanced or color-corrected version of @SyntaxTerror's second reference image then please feel free to do so. We can replace the hair colors when the project is underway, but it requires much more work.

    The one big uncertainty involves layering. @SyntaxTerror's cutout PNG puts most of the hair behind the body. The reference images are inconsistent on this point. This issue is not urgent; we can reassign strands to different layers whenever we want to. We could also mix things up, with some strands appearing in the foreground and some in the background (while still moving in unison because the physics system considers them to be "glued together"). Still, feedback on this point might dispel some uncertainty and allow the project to proceed more smoothly.

    Yes, it does :)
     
  13. Sausage&Eggs

    Sausage&Eggs Swell Supporter

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    Yes! Thank you for making this. It looks wonderful and def better than ref but I think being exposed and in that position certainly helps!

    My only critic is maybe the ear look at odd place. Maybe a layering problem with head piece and hair. Maybe if headpiece is made smaller and back a bit or maybe adjust angle. I don't know. It looks a but funny but I don't know enough to point out how. :(
     
  14. SyntaxTerror

    SyntaxTerror Club Regular Content Creator

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    The Placement of SDT's girl ear is often a problem, and often the hair on the forehead need to be redrawn or deformed. Here it is more a problem with the round thing on the headwear, and the size of the SDT girl ear.
    I just did this in a short time, erasing what wasn't the hairstyle roughly, resizing it and throwing it on a template... It is just an example of what can be done with this ref, not a finished mod, at all!

    Here is what can be done, by choosing "Small ears" and erasing some hair in the UNDER layer (it doesn't even need to modify the placement of headwear and hair strands):

    [​IMG]

    Again, this is not what will appear on the finished mod, just a test (even the strand in front of her ear isn't aligned exactly!).
    Anyway, @stuntcock may use another headwear as he said, but I think that small ears are a better choice for this character anyway.
     
  15. Sausage&Eggs

    Sausage&Eggs Swell Supporter

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    Yes that is an improvement. I'm just offering what I see and think as stuntcock suggested. I think for her string of hair on face it should maybe go to other side for accuracy but I honestly don't mind it like this.
     
  16. SyntaxTerror

    SyntaxTerror Club Regular Content Creator

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    This can be done very easily by just removing the part under the nose:
    [​IMG]
    (here I forgot the bottom of the string that should appear under her jaw)

    Actually, putting that string on the other side of her nose would solve the problem of it colliding with the shoulder:
    [​IMG]

    BUT if the costume is done, it would be better if it was shown from the left side, because it is asymetric, and the ornaments on her left leg would be hidden by the legging of her right leg, that is not very interresting.
    Also, her dress is open on the left side, if she is shown from the right, the dress covers almost all the legs.
    So, appart from that hair strand on shoulder issue, it is better to draw her shown from the left side and mirrored in my opinion.
    If the user really wants to have a canonical view of this character, he just have to use the "Mirrored" option of SDT.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2017
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