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Liberated Pixel Cup Art Contest Launches 63

Posted by timothy
from the take-heart-take-part-take-money dept.
Liberated Pixel Cup is an ambitious project backed by the FSF, Creative Commons, the Mozilla Foundation, and OpenGameArt to "program a bunch of free software games"; before the programming can get properly underway, though, they're looking for art that the game logic can manipulate, and they're using a contest to organize collecting it. Now, writes new submitter paroneayea, "Liberated Pixel Cup has announced that the art contest phase has just started. Several other bits have been announced as part of the post, including prize amounts, and a style guide, asset directory, and interactive demo section. Let the liberated pixeling commence!"
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Liberated Pixel Cup Art Contest Launches

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    Can I be the first one to say "WTF?"

    I know there is a big selection bias involved in being an artist, where a lack of realistic expectations is kind of a given, but seriously... I can't even read this summary it's so optimistically cavalier about the scale of the task described my eyes just glaze over. Doing difficult things without purpose isn't art. It's just foolish.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      That's the spirit!

    • Re:First post (Score:4, Interesting)

      by tqk (413719) <s.keeling@mail.com> on Saturday June 02, 2012 @01:58AM (#40191741)

      I know there is a big selection bias involved in being an artist, where a lack of realistic expectations is kind of a given, but seriously... I can't even read this summary it's so optimistically cavalier about the scale of the task described my eyes just glaze over. Doing difficult things without purpose isn't art.

      When I hung around the "Fine Arts" class in high school, I used an acetylene torch to cut up scrap into shapes I could then weld together into fanciful animal or plant shapes. I'd guess about fifteen girlfriends wound up with my creations gracing their front lawns. Art? They thought so. Years later, they were still out on their lawns, so their families agreed? Me, I just thought it was either fun or interesting to do.

      Then I got into pottery in the "Arts & Crafts" class, and THAT impressed me. Shimpo wheels, building kilns with fire bricks, all the interesting chemicals that go into glazes, Raku and reduction methods (suck the O2 out of silver oxide and you've got silver!).

      Too bad there's no money in it. I loved it.

      • Re:First post (Score:4, Interesting)

        by tqk (413719) <s.keeling@mail.com> on Saturday June 02, 2012 @02:30AM (#40191897)

        Continuing the thought (sorry):

        Then I got into pottery in the "Arts & Crafts" class, and THAT impressed me.

        But is that "Art?" Good pottery well done *can* be art. Usually, it's utilitarian/useful (hence "Crafts"). Japanese pottery (ie. Raku) is fantastic stuff. There's whole civilizations, about which we only know of their pottery. Mere mortals can take mud and turn it into rock that lasts longer than their civilization, to be found by later civilizations' archaeologists.

        For a mere craft, it can be pretty seductive. Art? What's art?

        Meh. Depends how you do it. I think Mona Lisa is overrated. I've seen pottery that damned near glowed with life in the right light. There are glazes that were once used regularly that have been lost and we cannot replicate today.

        Sorry for the segue. This's dear to me.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          What's art?

          Who gives a shit?
          Man, this philosophy thing is kind cool.

          • by tqk (413719)

            What's art?

            Who gives a shit?
            Man, this philosophy thing is kind cool.

            You have no idea how cool it can be. It can really wake up your mind, to the point you scare yourself with the stuff you imagine. All from inside your own head!

            I like Aristotle, and King Lionides. And Ayn Rand and Murray Rothbard and F. A. Hayek and and and ...

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Similar to the TIGSource Assemblee Competition [tigsource.com]. I think I might actually enter this one, though. It really is a fantastic idea for artistically-deficient programmers like myself who otherwise wouldn't be able to create something at a passable level.

    Note that despite the emphasis on art in the description, this phase refers to the creation of music and sound effects as well as graphics.

    • by exploder (196936)

      Note that despite the emphasis on art in the description, this phase refers to the creation of music and sound effects as well as graphics.

      Music and sound effects are not art?

  • Probably not.

    Quality game design is extremely complex and takes a lot of "man-hours" to arrive at something playable. Those with the skills to do it generally want to be paid...

    • by geekd (14774)

      For the love of it YES.

      I just finished my first HTML5 game. Runestone Defense. I already posted it here, so I won't spam the link again. But I wrote it for the love of it. I won't make any money. If I wanted to make money I'd have made a flash game and gone for sponsorship, and Kongregate.com and all of that.

      I spend 4 weeks making that game, several hours a day, after work. Everyone has a hobby. Some people make model trains. Some people drink. I make games (and drink). I also spend hours and hour

      • Yes, it's a "cute" game, and I might play it *a few times*, but not too much more than that. It's a game that will get added to the MILLIONS of other games that people might pay .99 cents for and play a few times - before losing interest and finding some other little time consumer. Games like yours are like Solitaire and Minesweeper and such...

        • by geekd (14774)

          And that's bad, why?

          I don't believe the point of The Liberated Pixel Cup is to come out with the open source Diablo III or Ghost Recon.

          Casual games seem to be the focus of the topic at hand....

        • I'm still trying to figure out why your point is even relevant. What do you think this contest is supposed to be for, to make the next world class MMO or something?

    • by wrook (134116) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @03:30AM (#40192131) Homepage

      My god. How many times have I seen that same sentence over and over and over again. Compilers are extremely complex and take a lot of man-hours to be able to use. Those with the skill to do it generally want to get paid. Then, I think it was spreadsheets. Ummm... After that it was an OS kernel. And then I think WYSIWYG word processor.... Web sever, web browser, 3D modelling software, etc, etc, etc.

      It's not just games. Software is complex. It takes a lot of man-hours to do. Currently, we have culture where some people write free software. Quite a few of those people get paid to do it now too. It's great! For a long time software has been ahead of the game in terms of "free culture" (by which I mean the products of creative effort that are freely distributable, not necessarily free of charge). Slowly other areas have been catching up.

      Games have historically been difficult to create in a free software project because while there were plenty of programmers around, artists and musicians have been lacking. Game designers have actually been plentiful, but they have been stuck in the modding scene (and often doing incredibly creative work) rather than in new development. This is slowly changing.

      The one place where free software game development really needs to improve is in realistic business models. I don't actually know of any full games (rather than engines) built on a free software model that are profitable. With business software, you can charge for support, but with games you can't. I would like to see someone try to do it, possibly using merchandizing, serialization and sponsored development (i.e., Chapter 2 brought to you be Coca Cola). It would take good marketing skills, which is lacking the most in free software development. Mozilla makes $100 million a year and they don't do support. I don't think it's a stretch to think that a decent game could do as well.

      • by Korin43 (881732)

        The one place where free software game development really needs to improve is in realistic business models. I don't actually know of any full games (rather than engines) built on a free software model that are profitable. With business software, you can charge for support, but with games you can't.

        It's entirely possible to open source games while still selling them. The trick is that you only make the source available to people who buy the game. The GPL is even set up to handle this -- it only requires you to make source code available to anyone you distribute binaries to. Several Humble Indie Bundle games have done this and it hasn't seemed to hurt them (especially since people have ended up helping them port those same games).

        I think the big problem is the phrase "free software", which (to normal p

      • by Jesus_666 (702802)
        I always thought that the obvious approach for commercial open source games would be to make the executable freely available but to assert your copyright on the other assets. Of course that doesn't work if the assets are also open-sourced, in which case I think a prefunded model (cf. Kickstarter, Desura Alpha Funding) would be the most plausible approach.

        Of course you always have to ensure that you actually are allowed to sell the assets you use. While the GPL doesn't prohibit commercial use, CC-BY-NC doe
      • by dgatwood (11270)

        My god. How many times have I seen that same sentence over and over and over again. Compilers are extremely complex and take a lot of man-hours to be able to use. Those with the skill to do it generally want to get paid. Then, I think it was spreadsheets. Ummm... After that it was an OS kernel. And then I think WYSIWYG word processor.... Web sever, web browser, 3D modelling software, etc, etc, etc.

        Yeah, and unsurprisingly, the vast majority of people who work on those things—even in the free software

        • by KDR_11k (778916)

          Even if you get enough volunteers together you have the problem that commercial games are produced with a strict hierarchy where a small number of people are in charge of deciding what the game will be like and hundreds of people working to make what the designers ask for. With volunteers you can't have such a rigid structure or people will just get annoyed and leave (why contribute to a project if you're just a cog in the wheels?).

          Games also don't have as strict of a definition for what's the right thing t

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Probably not.

      Quality game design is extremely complex and takes a lot of "man-hours" to arrive at something playable. Those with the skills to do it generally want to be paid...

      Same could be said for any software.
      In case you haven't noticed, the world is full of wonderful free software written by people with skill, and surely it took a lot of "man-hours".
      I'm actually quite surprise why it hasn't been done by now; FSF would've backed it up in the past as well.

  • This Is Awesome (Score:5, Interesting)

    by geekd (14774) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @02:24AM (#40191865) Homepage

    I'm a programmer. I love games. I just finished my first HTML5 game: http://magigames.org/runestone_defense.html [magigames.org] I used some OpenGameArt.org art in there, even.

    I am SO looking forward to entering this contest as a programmer. Solo - HTML5. Oh yeah.

    I wonder about the library rules. I used Jawsjs http://jawsjs.com/ [jawsjs.com] in my last game, and it is open source, but I was looking at ImpactJS, (NOT open source) for my next game.

    Anyway, more open art for people like me to use = good stuff in my book. Look for my entry when the programming phase opens.

    • by tbird81 (946205)

      I've just looked up at the clock! I've spent 1.5hours playing your game!!!

    • Quite good game.
    • I wonder about the library rules. I used Jawsjs http://jawsjs.com/ [jawsjs.com] in my last game

      You're doing it wrong. Gamemaker is what you need.

    • by AlXtreme (223728)

      Neat addictive game!

    • I'll third the Neat Game comment!

      The first x levels are easy. The first hard one is the one with the racing skeletons.

      • by geekd (14774)

        Thanks to you and everyone else for your kind (and even the not-so-kind) words. Lots of people are playing the game today. I've been a Slashdot reader since 1999, so I guess I should not be surprised the affect even a link in the comments can have on traffic.

        The racing skeleton level is one of my favorites. :)

        • Heh X hours later, I did manage to beat it! (I won't say how, in case other gamers out there want to still try it.)

          But having spent a nice weekend getting through nearly all the game, what is your opinion on a level index? I wouldn't want to go through the whole level set just to try out one level!

          And in fact that level turned out to be the hardest one of all for me. It stumped me all last night! For the rest, a few good patterns seemed to work, and I only lost he 2nd to last level by what feels like a lack

  • I wish someone embarks on enhancing awesome classic console epics like hack, greed, etc Am not a heavy games player, but once in a while when plugged into a remote ssh session on a cloud, I open a session of a cli bsd-game to kill "darkspace" stress :-)
  • by Hatta (162192) on Saturday June 02, 2012 @08:45AM (#40193377) Journal

    Is there a good sprite editor for Linux? Or do people just zoom way in with Gimp and use a 1x1 pen tool?

    • by tepples (727027)

      Or do people just zoom way in with Gimp and use a 1x1 pen tool?

      That's one way to do it, and that's how I've done it in my own NES homebrew games, along with a tool written in Python to convert PNGs into the NES's tile image format. You can set the grid size to 8x8, which gives you a size reference and makes certain copy and paste operations easier.

  • "Phase one of the competition is to build a set of artwork that's dual licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 and GPLv3 and stylistically consistent."

    ugh, I cant wait for phase 2 where they dictate what game we should write for them as well in the name of "liberation", oh wait, they have 16 bit style RPG, creative ...

    • by Nushio (951488)

      Just because the sprites are RPG style doesn't mean you have to write an RPG. You could easily make a TCG (I'm working on one), or a Shmup featuring dragons instead of ships and killing villagers, or a Tactical RPG, or a bomberman-like game.

      Point is that the sprites are useful for a lot of genres, you just have to be creative.

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