Art Fight 2020 Post Mortem – A Spicy Art-Sharing Duel!

Hey there! It’s hard to believe that this year passed so fast that we have already participated in an Art Fight event again!

Just like last year, we want to offer some artist insight, and since I, Moski, am the lead artist that’s in charge of the art-side of things around here. I’ll be telling you all about Whales And Games’ participation in Art Fight 2020!

In last year’s post-mortem, we explained what the Art Fight event is, our reasoning to participate and our overall experience taking part in it. But things changed a lot with Whales And Games since last year, which in turn affected how spicy things got this past July! Let’s get into it and see, shall we?

Moski Profile in Art Fight

Starting from the top and recapping from last year, Art Fight is an event where artists get selected into one of two different teams, submit their own original characters and score points for their team by drawing characters belonging to artists from the rival team. It’s two teams drawing characters from each other for a whole month, which results in one of the most wholesome art-trading wars that you can participate in on the internet!

Clip Studio Paint open in an Attack
‘Y2K’ by Akumanorobin

This time around, since we wanted to take the opportunity to wrap up some of the ideas from Whales And Games and Bunny Copulation, we decided to participate in the event by updating our character sheets as well as creating some new ones for characters from both brands. I also wanted to improve my skill on my new drawing program of choice, Clip Studio Paint, which I had recently switched to from Krita for both promotional and game artwork. 

At some point, we thought about a twist to wrap up the event and, well, things went off the rails in the best way possible, merging both our artwork and game development prowess together!

Art Fight Duel Gameplay Screenshot

In this year’s edition of Art Fight, the teams to choose from were between Sugar and Spice. I opted to draw under the flag of Spice out of preference, and, before I knew it, I was creating art left and right!

Art Fight Teams for 2020 Sugar and Spice

Character Sheets and Artwork! Just the usual…?

For Art Fight 2020, we wanted to update a lot of our characters to properly reflect how we’ve evolved since our first participation. Last year, we had plenty of sheets for people to draw built from previous promotional and game art, but we hid them all at the beginning of the event to make new versions of them. 

These new versions, featuring completely original new art created just for these sheets, took a lot longer than expected, eating away the first two weeks of the event. However, despite the delay, they allowed us to introduce some brand new and freshened up designs for several of our mascot characters! Whalechan and Dapperchan are now officially looking nicer and dapper than ever!

Once we finished the character sheets, it was finally time for me to create some awesome art. Since we needed to make up for the time lost, we decided to start strong, picking characters from pending revenges from last year and bookmarks (found by randomly hopping around users) that we thought looked striking. My first piece of art featured an animated background, and as soon as we uploaded the attack, we started getting attacked as well, which was great! We liked the final result of the first attack so much, we made it a goal to animate every attack from there on out. 

Showcase of Attacks for Art Fight 2020
‘Y2K’ by Akumanorobin, ‘Mr. Crow’ by Kun (Ceshoh), ‘Prisma’ by Greteh and ‘Ahvi’ by Wearepopcandies

Halfway through the event, we had finished 6 attacks. We roughly had around 15 by the same time in the previous year. I originally intended to continue making standalone artwork until we were done, but then, we had a wild idea.

Art Fight Duel Gameplay Screenshot

Art Fight Duel, an actual playable game?!

As we were midway through the event, we conceptualized an actual playable card game based on Art Fight. Art Fight Duel, with a pitch document written and all.

I didn’t sleep that night. It was just the perfect mix of, well, everything! We’re game developers and artists, it was a game that involved both Art and Fighting, it could feature over a dozen artists, put some of our own characters into a new game, and it could be just the thing we needed to reignite our game development spirit!

Art Fight Duel Title Screen

From the moment we had the concept down, we decided to make the game rather than to continue making artwork for several reasons:

  • A game jam sounded like a very innovative idea for the event, since it’s usually reserved for finite pieces of artwork. Turns out, it was very novel, since more people made games about Art Fight this year too.
  • The game pitched card game mechanics mixed with auto-battler mechanics. This resulted in the possibility to add as many characters as we could and putting them in a setting where they were actually fighting. Thematically, it made perfect sense with the event.
  • It made use of a lot of concepts from the history of the event. Art Fight Duel is team based, just like its namesake. We also added affinities based on previous event themes and a few nods to things that are well known by the event’s community and past participants.
  • We had the opportunity to put some of our new character sheets to use. Finally, we were able to give Whalechan (and Dapperchan) a proper participation in a game!
Showcase of Sprites for Art Fight Duel
‘Dapperchan’ by WhalesAndGames, ‘Ricketby Nights2Dreams and ‘Penny by CuckyUncle

The execution of the development didn’t go flawlessly, but the result speaks for itself. By spending every single day of what was left of the event in developing the game, we managed to feature 20 artists, with animated sprites for all the 24 featured characters. We took heavily into consideration their designs and bios when creating their sprites, attacks and stats.

We submitted the first version of the game in the last two minutes before Art Fight was over. No stress! After the event, we spent some extra weeks tweaking and adding in audio, a proper title screen and our usual settings and credits, bringing the game right up to our jam-standard!

Art Fight Duel Gameplay Screenshot

Art Insight, Learning and Results

We wrapped up Art Fight, and I was finally convinced that switching from one drawing program (Krita) to another (Clip Studio Paint) was the best thing to do at this point in my artist career. 

Clip Studio Paint open in an Attack
‘Hoshiri’, ‘Jax’ and ‘Makuru’ by PurplePlatypus73

While I didn’t learn as much as last year, I still tried to innovate in my style in some aspects:

  • Layer Clipping – There are many methods to mask and group across different drawing programs. Due to the limited time, I needed one that could be easily organized and managed quickly. In Krita, I used Alpha Inheritance to create shadows, but it required pesky layer management. In Clip Studio Paint, Layer Clipping does similar results in a more simple fashion.
  • Airbrushing I had practised with airbrushes before, but I wanted to experiment with it here too, with great results. Turns out they get along great with Layer Clipping and help give a nice-finish oomph to my pieces!
  • CSP’s Asset Library – My new drawing program comes with a community-driven marketplace where people can create tools and assets. In a few situations, I wanted to make use of some brushes from there, and so I learned how to properly download and install them.
  • Masking – Similar to Alpha Inheritance and Layer Clipping, Masking allowed me to work with each artwork in non-destructive ways, delimiting the areas where some layers could be visible. While one would think that they’re all just different ways of doing the same thing, it turns out that combining either of the two with Masking allows for fantastic results.
  • Special Layers – For some pieces, I needed to experiment with things that I could easily do in Krita which I had not been able to replicate on CSP yet. 
    • One of those was halftones. While not the same, I found out that CSP has full functionality for Tone Layers, which allows making layers filled with simple patterns and which helped me create some fancy effects. 
    • I also learned about Object Layers, which are like Photoshop’s equivalent to Smart Objects. These allowed me to put files in a layer and be able to resize them without destroying their properties.
Clip Studio Paint open in an Attack
‘Mr. Crow’ by Kun (Ceshoh)

Beyond Art into Game Development!

Beyond the standalone artworks, Art Fight Duel represented equal opportunities to learn differently. It helped me understand things I could do better on Krita before, like the character sprites and the use of mirroring tools. However, I did end up using pretty much the same techniques for the duration of the development, as there were not as many opportunities to try new styles.

Clip Studio Paint open in the Art Fight Duel background

Aside from its artistic point of view, there are some takeaways to explore too when it comes to the development of the game. While we had previously discussed considering making a game for Art Fight, it didn’t become a serious consideration until late into the event. Yet, once we got started, we couldn’t stop.

We did as much good to Art Fight Duel as it did to us. It had been a long time since we last made a short self-contained game, and it felt fresh to go back to that. We chose a genre we have never challenged and went with mechanics we had never used. Since Art Fight is an endless ocean of characters, designs and concepts, we rarely had troubles in finding any particular thing that could fit any of our design’s needs.

Art Fight Duel Gameplay Screenshot

As a result, Art Fight Duel became one of our most ambitious games, mixing strategy, fast-based mechanics, a distinctive style, and plenty of cards. Plenty of the people who had their character featured in the game have been pleasantly surprised. Given the circumstances, we’d say that the game was quite popular among the social circle it was made for, and it has plenty of opportunities to grow!

However, since it had been a while since we last developed a short self-contained game, we heavily under-estimated the implementation of some features. As a result, we had to spend some extra weeks following the end of Art Fight implementing quality-of-life inclusions such as settings and audio without otherwise would make the game feel lackluster.

Art Fight Duel Settings Screenshot

With us participating in Ludum Dare 47 in the coming week, and with Bunny Splash Casino resuming development, it’s important we take these short-comings into consideration, and make sure we prepare in advance. For example, features such as re-usable settings menus can be prepared ahead of time of the event to avoid spending precious jam time adding basic quality-of-life features.

Art Fight Duel Gameplay Screenshot

Numerical Feels-Good

Spending so long in making character sheets and changing gears from making artwork to making a game jeopardized our opportunity to receive cool artwork a bit, and ended up receiving less artwork than last year. However, the game was fantastically received to the point that it even got featured! 

Art Fight Duel featured in the Art Fight Website

Aside from that, and just like last year, there are still numerical results we’d like to evaluate, and which help us gauge our participation and performance in the event:

  • My account has 1124 followers at the time of this post. It had 401 last year, so that’s a massive leap! It helps that this year we knew about the event in advance, which allowed us to network ahead of time.
  • This year, I made 6 drawings and one Mass Attack in the form of Art Fight Duel. Last year, I made 26 drawings. While I had less to show than last year, all of it was animated, and the game was a great success!
  • We updated 6 of our 12 character sheets from last year. Aside from that, we finally closed-off Whalechan’s new design, formalized Dapperchan and showcased a bunch of new Bunny Copulation designs!
  • We received 42 defences. That’s lower than last year’s 60. This is the result of roughly being “active” for a lot less than last year, since we were busy with the character sheets and the game. But the notoriety of making the game should cause some interest in 2021!
    • Of those 42 defences, the Whalechan redesign was the most popular, getting 15 defences, with Buns Buns following second at 11 defenses.
    • Bluessom triumphed over Jazzy this year, with 5 versus 3 defenses.
    • While other participants were quick to fall-to-love with Whalechan’s ​new design, Dapperchan still needs to warm up to people, as she only got 3 defenses overall.
    • Some characters which we didn’t even do new sheets for, such as Caffie and Mr. Woofman, got 1 defense too!
Showcase of Defenses from Art Fight 2020
‘Dapperchan’ by Orange-Kiwi, ‘Whalechan’ by Tianmasaki, ‘Buns Buns’ by Minimep, Cheqmate’ by Reinsroom, ‘Autumn Whalechan’ by Amuerion, ‘Cheqmate’ by Sosha, ‘Whalechan’ by Akumanorobin and ‘Jazzy’ by Sckookum

Feelings and Emotions

While the experience overall was fantastic, Art Fight occurred in a very tumultuous moment for us. At times, it was difficult to grasp that the expectations and the reality didn’t match up perfectly. However, it was also proof that some of the best things in life are not really planned, and that even when plans don’t match expectations, one can have a great time.

Clip Studio Paint open in an Attack
‘Prisma’ by Wearepopcandies

Last year, I came to the conclusion that I really enjoyed drawing characters. And I still do, perhaps even more, but the experience came around with the idea that I’ve also got to grow in maturity. The novelty of having this brand-new event was gone, and we needed to up the ante. This resulted in us participating in the event as if it was a self-imposed opportunity, and wanting to make the most out of it across character sheets, thumbnails, animation and even a game. Rather than treating Art Fight as a leisure, as we probably should have, we ended up feeling fatigued as the days went by.

However, doing art leisurely or for the sake of improvement are not necessarily contradictory statements. The saying says “find a job you enjoy doing, and you will never have to work a day in your life”. I’d say that’s partially true, but one has to also cope with things like health and fatigue, and adjust accordingly. But even when things go dire, I really do like drawing. I may be older than the average participant and have been doing art since my teens, but drawing fun, interesting characters is still part of my DNA.

Showcase of Attacks from both 2019 and 2020

Final Remarks

Applying my artistic skills to make an actual game really opened up the possibilities of what I, and we can do during Art Fight. Regardless of making regular artwork, animations or even games, it’s important to play to one’s strengths at times, but also to take risks in others. I don’t feel so bad about having missed out on doing more character artwork when I see that people really enjoyed playing the game.

Unity open in an Attack
‘Ahvi’ by Greteh

We have evaluated the possibility of making it a tradition to update Art Fight Duel every year, with new mechanics, adding content to match the new themes, and, of course, even more characters from more artists! We still need to make more character sheets, and, if things go right, we’ll be plenty busy with Bunny Splash Casino alongside it. For now, we’ll wait and see, but it’d be a fantastic time to update it going forward!

Showcase of Defenses from Art Fight 2020
‘Whalechan and Polite Whale’ by Sweetkooky, ‘Bluessom’ by Mantiskin, ‘Buns Buns’ by HammyandFriends and ‘Whalechan’ by Esmahasakazoo

For the time being, I’ve got a whole year ahead of me to further polish my skills so that, if I do join Art Fight next year, I am even better than I was this year! Even if fatigue or personal worries get in the way, I still see myself creating artwork for the foreseeable future and I’ll do my best to enjoy it.

That will be something to look forward to! For now however, we have to prepare for Ludum Dare 47, and the challenges our new commercial projects bring us! Thank you for reading and I hope you join us along for the ride! Cheers! 🐳

Duel for your favourite team in the Art Fight Duel!

The imagination of plenty of artists is unleashed in card form! Sugar or Spice, duel for your favourite Art Fight 2020 team in Art Fight Duel! ⚔️

Made as an homage to Art Fight, an event that pits artists into two teams to draw characters from each other, this game features 24 original creations from different artists that participated in 2020’s event! Characters of each team, Team Sugar or Team Spice, are ready to duke it out!

Art Fight Duel has been a special project of ours in development since the beginning of August. We had a pre-release version out for a while, but this is the definitive version for this year, featuring audio, polished gameplay and all the quality of life quirks you’d expect from a game of ours! ✨

You can play the game in all desktop, web and mobile versions on itch.io! We’ve also made the character and item cards and sprite sheets showcasing all of the different characters in the game available in their own dedicated page!

You can are feel free to talk about your combos, features you’d like to see and more on the newly opened #art-fight-duel in our Discord Server!

It’s been incredibly pleasant to be releasing a new jam-project after so long and a great privilege being able to feature inspiring character designs from so many artists! If we participate next year again, we’ll totally add even more content, characters and maybe even features, but it’s still too early to tell!

For now, we hope you enjoy Art Fight Duel, and gear up as we move towards Bunny Splash Casino and a return to even more jam games in the future! You can also look forward to a post-mortem about the event and the game soon as well! 👏


Art Fight Post Mortem – Artistic Wholesome Warfare

While Whales and Games has been primarily a game development studio, during July and early August, we took a small detour to get into an art-oriented endeavor. Invited by a community member, Moski (that’s me, hello!), the lead artist of the team, participated in an event known as Art Fight, with the purpose of learning new techniques and push the boundaries of what Whales and Games can do at an artwork level!

Art Fight Website

The event, Art Fight, is an annual art game where people of all skill levels are split into two teams. Participants upload their original characters and “attack” the opposing team by drawing their opponent’s characters! Fighting by gifting! The more you draw, the more likely you are of receiving revenge attacks (that means, being attacked by someone you’ve attacked before)!

While this was my first Art Fight participation, I made it my goal to try something new on every piece of artwork I’d make. Be it a new style, or a new technique, I wanted to take the event as a self-improvement activity, with plans to put what was learned to work for our games and social media in the future.

‘Crab-chan’ by nyancatimusprime

Before I go into the innards of the experience, I’d like to say that everything that I created in the Art Fight was made with the free open source digital painting program Krita. I assure you I’m not sponsored or anything, but I highly recommend it to people who want a sturdy and flexible drawing tool without having to pay for it.

Other members of the team helped me through feedback, suggestions and even by animating some of my creations using the game-engine Unity using their new animation package for skeletal animation. Again, not sponsored, although that would definitely be cool.

‘Molly’ and ‘Ru’ by MDLune

Considerations About our Approach

Doing an Art Fight attack for a person I’ve never met before resulted in a lot of thoughts for me early on. Should I select characters I would like to draw, or something that would challenge me? Should I do as many attacks as possible, or take my time and make stronger drawings? What style should I use? Should I make revenge attacks, or attack people who are more likely to revenge-attack me?

Art Fight Characters

While I can’t say for certain that I ended up following a set pattern, I came to some conclusions while making this search:

  • We joined the Art Fight as newcomers and strangers. If we wanted people to attack us, we needed to be known around, commenting on people and networking.
  • Early on, without any submitted drawings, people that wanted Revenge-attacks may not attack people who have not done attacks before.
  • A marketing staple – First impressions are everything. Having a nice layout helps people feel that someone is putting effort. This includes the main profile and the quality of the attacks being submitted.
  • I donated enough to get access to modifying the CSS of my profile, giving it a better appearance that was in-line with what we normally use for our Whales And Games branding. 
Art Fight Profile

While I grew up enjoying drawing lots and lots of characters, I decided to go with a quality-over-quantity approach. On average, I’d say that I ended up dedicating a day-worth or more to each drawing. Some took less time, and others took far more. It mostly had to do with the styles and experiments done on each work.

Technical Art Insights

You may ask, though, what kind of experiments did I do? If you’ve seen my work across Whales and Games’ social media (namely on our Twitter and Facebook), you’ve probably known me for drawing cartoonish-esque characters with a cell-shaded style, this means, there’s a very strong distinction between colors and shadows – consisting of one set of shadows and one set of highlights – instead of a smooth blending.

Art Fight Attack Submissions
Credits from left to right:
‘Madoc’ by Wilderness, ‘Goo’ by mot-bot, ‘Pratlene’ by Prate-Dragon and ‘Lottie’ by Moontastic

While that still was visible in many of my attacks, some of my new tests during the event were as follows:

  • Airbrush Overlays – Digital art requires the very least a minimum of organization. By grouping the colors or even the lineart with them, there are ways to help colors pop. A simple-yet-effective way to give colored drawings a more vivid aspect was to add black and white airbrush overlays, giving the picture some light effects. However, these can disturb the background, or even other elements if not used carefully. Fortunately, Krita had something for the occasion.
  • Grouped Inherit Alpha Property – When making game assets, I had to learn a non-destructive way to make things that can be easily recolored and shaded, and I ended up using that methodology in a lot of my attacks. One of Krita’s layer properties is called Inherit Alpha, which makes the opaque content of a layer only visible where there’s opaque content in layers below that one. Applied inside groups, that allows for things like the airbrush overlays to only be displayed within the group, preserving the edges and avoiding getting in the way of the background and other objects.
  • Brush Patterns – Half-tones (usually displayed as circles of varying sizes) are a popular technique usually given to make something look retro or stylish. While they can be used as fills, Krita also allows to use them on brushes, and to modify their behavior, up to a point. This applies to other patterns as well, but, as far as I could find out, Krita is somewhat limited on them, and getting a consistent, predictable use of them is nigh impossible within the program.
  • Layer StylesPhotoshop has styles that allow for strokes, drop shadows, satins, bevels and what not. It turned out that Krita also has some of them. They’re more clunky than in Photoshop, and they seem to amp up the resources to manage the program, but it’s good to know what there’s non-destructive methods to achieve some popular effects.

Numerical Results

The numbers aren’t everything, since this event was made to help artists connect with each other, have them practice by making them draw new characters and have an overall fun time.

Art Fight Profile

That is still the case here, but because of our aggressive approach to networking and the mentality of doing quality art over quantity, I think some numbers are still worth evaluating.

  • During the event, I made 26 drawings. While the plan was to make at least one daily, sometimes I managed to make more, but situations around made it more manageable to take a slower pace than trying to crunch that much work.
  • We received 57 attacks, of which I managed to make a revenge of 12. We couldn’t have foreseen we’d get this much attention, and we’re extremely thrilled and grateful for them all! Some were also the result of attacks we did, so I’d say that the system is working as intended. We’ll be trying to answer back to all the attacks we’ve got in the next edition of the event, we hope!
  • During the event, as a result of commenting, networking, and keeping people on our tracks, we got 400 followers. That’s roughly one attack for every 8 followers!
  • I only did one friendly fire, attacking one person of our own team. It was a revenge attack. I wanted to avoid doing friendly fire attacks in the spirit of the event, but I did want to respond to some of the ones I got. Sadly, I ran out of time, and that’s as much as I could do.
  • I submitted 12 characters from the Whales and Games universe namely our mascots and Whipped and Steamy characters due to it being some of our most character-oriented designs. The 57 attacks we received were scattered among them unevenly. Worth noting, Whalechan received 12. Buns Buns got 15. Jazzy and Bluessom appeared together (meaning both characters were accounted for) in 3 different pieces. Only Princess Dom. went back to her kingdom with no attacks.  
Art Fight Defences
Credits from left to right and top to bottom:
‘Mr. Woofman’ by KiRAWRa, ‘Whalechan’ by Bright, ‘Jazzy and Bluessom’ by MDLune, ‘Glade’ by Xneovaii, ‘Cheqmate’ by UncleCucky, ‘Caffie’ by Tofumeat, ‘Buns Buns’ by PicoSheep and ‘Cheqmate, Monetizationman and Bootybeard’ by HeroicOutlaw.

Artistic Feelings

Now, for some, that might have been some very-specific artist gibberish and marketing boogaloo. But other than techniques and tools, art is also about feelings. And these past few weeks of working almost daily for hours to end have made me evaluate a lot of things about how I feel towards art.

‘Kotie’ by Glittermilk

Being able to work with many characters and many styles made me think back on the words that some of our other team members told me once. I don’t have “one style”, but rather, my “style” is still evolving, and encompassing adaptability. Adjusting to different things, instead of just drawing always in the same style with predictable characteristics. Be it soft or intense, fluffy or muscular, cute or monstrous, and the in-betweens, I always found enjoyment in what I was doing. There were some hiccups, but I’m pleased with my performance on my 26 attacks.

Working with so many new characters revitalized my love for character design as well. While I’ve been proud of my cartoonish style, I’ve had a chance to draw cute, sexy, horror, weird, and more, with varying degrees of realism or cartoonishness. I got so excited by making characters that I even sketched a bunch that I didn’t have the time to finish. Hopefully next year!

But drawing this much for so long also had some… adverse effects. Little moving around, lots of time sitting down, just drawing and drawing, nothing of that did wonders to my body. I felt a lot of fatigue at times, somewhat cranky, and I devoted so much time to doing artwork that I had little time for hobbies like gaming or going out with my friends. I got so engrossed in making artwork that almost nothing outside of it mattered for a month.

Trying to get as many attacks as possible, I continued to double, triple, quadruple and quintuple guess if I was doing things right. Was it better to spend more time in a single attack to make it the best it could be, improving as an artist? Or should I cut my losses after a while and submit something that was good enough? Should I spend more time commenting and getting to know my fellow artists, or more time doing actual drawings? The looming feeling of “I’m doing X when I should be doing Y”. Like a thought that someone has said to me before, “it’s the opposite of an art block. It’s an art overwhelm, being incapable of doing a thing because you have so many possibilities”.

While there were more frustrations as results of ongoing life affairs and some failed techniques, overall, I believe that I’ve evolved as a person and as an artist like never before. I’ve learned new techniques, how to use other tools, my workflow has been reshaped, and I ultimately feel reinvigorated, with high hopes of doing for my team what I’ve been doing for the Art Fight participants! More colors, more details, more flexibility!

Final Remarks

Art Fight Submissions
Credits from left to right:
‘Penny’ by UncleCucky, ‘Olé’ by KiRAWRa, ‘Lisbeth’ by Royalspaghetti, and ‘Yuki’ by Crazyie

Do you want to know what’s the main takeaway of the Art Fight experience? Well, if you open up a fortune cookie that reads “Practice makes perfect”, I’d say that’s the one generic statement you should keep close to heart. While it can be arduous and even seem like an impossibly steep climb, there’s no other way around it. It doesn’t really matter if you’re entry level or an expert, there’s always practice to do and things to learn. I’ve swallowed my artist pride more times than I can count, forcing me to think that I can still do more, and so far, I do feel it’s doing wonders.

On the Whales and Games front, I’ll be trying some of the new things I learned, trying to give as much care to our own characters as I did for the characters of other people during the event. The plans include a few updated designs, managing colors and palettes in a more organized fashion, and being thorough with our logos and overall branding image. Just you wait. Moski and the Whales And Games team are going to impress the socks off you!

I guess that wraps it up, nice and tidy. Am I going to be there for next year’s Art Fight? Most likely, unless my life has some massive shift. Even then, I’m willing to find time to do some attacks even if it’s far less time. Drawing is a thing that fills me with good vibes and positivity, and I’d highly recommend any fellow creatives – new or experts – to live up to the Art Fight challenge. May we meet on the battlefield, and look forward to what we at WAG have to offer! 🐳

Artfight-ing, Champion Polishing and a Whipped’N’Seedies Collab! • Status Report – August 2019

Whale hello there! It’s a brand-new month, isn’t it? And that means it’s time for another Whales And Games status report about what we’ve been up to and what’s next for our in-development games!

In case you’ve missed it, last month we announced we’d start publishing a new status report at the beginning of each month, and this month we have a whole lot to talk about! From a sudden participation on Art Fight, to even more polishing work on Colossorama •The Champions Update to a whole new surprise collaboration around Whipped and Steamy • Cosplay Café, and more! Are you ready to reel in? 🐳


An Unexpected Artistic Quarrel in Art Fight!

As a bit of a surprise for us, back at the beginning of July a member from our Discord told us about this event happening in July known as Art Fight. In case you haven’t heard about it before, it is a yearly event all about artists drawing each other’s characters, while scoring points for their respective teams! Driven by curiosity, we decided to give a glance at it and it ended up becoming our biggest highlight of the month as we made a bunch of digital art for other artists and received a bunch of new WAG artwork ourselves!

Credits from left to right and top to bottom:
‘Crab-chan’ by nyancatimusprime, ‘Molly’ and ‘Ru’ by MDLune, ‘Luna’ by TrashPandaArt, ‘Madoc’ by Wilderness, ‘Alexander’ by AkayriSakidoga, ‘Lisbeth’ by royalspags, ‘Kane’ and ‘Hinata’ by HeroicOutlaw and ‘Pratlene’ by Prate-Dragon

In the picture above you can see some of the attacks (artworks made for other artists) that we’re made by our artist, Moski, during the event. As part of his goal for joining the event, each of the 26 pieces he made feature some twist in their styles here and there, from cartoonish to chibi designs and from pixelart to lineless artwork. And of course, some of us at WAG helped animate a few pieces here and there! 😊

Credits from left to right and top to bottom:
‘Buns Buns’ by yolk-sac, ‘Jazzy and Bluessom’ by MDLune, ‘Cheqmate’ by CKoenig88, ‘Jazzy and Bluessom’ by Dxmyxix, ‘Whalechan’ by SweetKooky, ‘Caffie’ by tofumeat, ‘Whalechan’ by nyancatimusprime and ‘Monetizationman’ by mot-bot

And to our surprise, we got almost double the artwork we received back (we tried to reply back to all of it but we ran out of time 💦)! We’ve received a bunch of new art of Whalechan, Cheqmate, Buns Buns, Jazzy, Bluessom and others! We’ll be looking for a way to showcase them all for everyone to see (as long as each piece’s artist allows us for it)! Meanwhile, the samples above will have to be enough for you to feast your eyes on. 

It’s been an extremely art-motivating experience and we (especially the artist) have a lot more thoughts about Art Fight and our experience with it that we want to talk about and discuss publicly. However, for the sake of not stretching this post, we’ll be leaving those for its own post-mortem in the future! Keep an eye out for it!


Blood isn’t the only juice flowing around Colossorama!

Like we discussed last month, we have been working on getting Colossorama • The Champions Update ready for release and have been continuously working on its final touches, adding a final coat of polish to make sure we close off the game for good this time!

What final polish is missing, you ask? Well, we’re currently redoing most of the sounds of the game to make sure they have way more extra oomph than the previous white noise samples, making sure that all of the menus are controller compatible, as well as revising final art assets and gameplay features! We’re also adding a little bit of extra juice here and there to make sure even the smallest stuff stands out and feels great! Here’s a look at our fully-polished Leaderboards for example.

Currently, the Colossorama changelog for this version boasts over six pages of changes, from gameplay tweaks to new features and menus, to visual overhauls and more! We’re also working on playtesting the game together with our feedback committee and we can’t wait to get it into your hands and close off a long pending chapter of Whales And Games! Get ready to slay some heads! ⚔️


Whipped and Seedies Together for the Feedies

While we’re currently focused on working on Colossorama • The Champions Update, it doesn’t mean we have no news about Whipped and Steamy • Cosplay Café! While development has certainly taken a bit of a background note, we’re still very much working on the game and even have a little surprise we’ve cooked on the side for this month!

Recently, we finished all of the main writing for the new character we announced last time, Roberta (Caffie’s Roommate), and we have also started working on the writing of the second somewhat-new character! Likewise, we’ve also worked on implementing and polishing some of the new items and even added brand new item filters (art-pass pending) to the item selection screens, making finding items that target specific cosplayer groups even easier!

And of course, we also have to mention the brand new music track that was composed for the new Support group, which Roberta and the second unannounced character will be a part off! Give it a listen, will you? Its considerably long though, after all, it has all four variations of it in a single track!

As for the side surprise we’ve been cooking, back when we released the game we were invited by the fine folks at Cactus Labs to do a small cross-over collaboration with their also-adult-parody game Draw the Seedies So I Can Has Feedies to add some Whipped and Steamy inspired content to their game’s art assembler! And guess what? That’s coming up next week!

In case you haven’t given a try at the game before, the game is a parody on the age of digital art and being an artist. As you struggle to pay your rent and must take commissions, will you strive to answer only to the safest-of-work ones, or will you go for the extra-spicy requests in exchange for some extra cash? You can pick from multiple preset backgrounds, foregrounds and subjects to assemble art and please your clients. And hey, you can even export some of your finalized art for safe-keeping! 

And, as you can expect from this sort of collaboration, there’s a whole new set of backgrounds, foregrounds and character art all themed around Whipped and Steamy (which materials were handled by both our Moski and Cactus Labs’ Birdpun). Some characters from the game might even send you some interesting requests for you to fulfill! Do have extra caution when we release it next week though! There is actual explicit material in this one. 👀


And that’s pretty much a wrap when it comes to art and games this past month! We are extremely excited for our future plans we have in store for Whales And Games. You can still look for more on Colossorama • The Champions Update, the Art Fight post-mortem and our collaboration with Draw the Seedies So I Can Has Feedies throughout this month! You can keep up with the announcements for all of these over here on our Blog, on our Twitter and Facebook!

On a side-note, some of our team members are also going to be casually visiting both Devcom and Gamescom in Cologne, Germany later this month! If you do happen to be visiting any of the events, look out for some people in extremely royal-blue shirts. There’s a very big chance that’s us! 🐳

If visiting events isn’t really your thing, no worries! You can always hang out with us over at our Discord chat! We just had a bunch of artists join us after Art Fight so feel free to join along and showcase some of your stuff as well! Cheers! 👏