Pixel art concept pieces for an Eastern-themed metroidvania

  • Status: Closed
  • Prize: $100
  • Entries Received: 11
  • Winner: J0YB0Y

Contest Brief

Freelancer Contest: Pixel Art for 2D Platformer - Ongoing Collaboration

We are seeking a talented pixel artist to join our team for an exciting, ongoing project: a 2D platformer set in a traditional Japanese afterlife. This is a unique opportunity to contribute to the creation of a captivating game world.

Project Overview:

Project Type: 2D Platformer
Art Style: Pixel Art
Nature: Ongoing Collaboration
Project Requirements:

Create 3 pieces of pixel concept art:

Ghostly Samurai (Protagonist): A vengeful spirit with a stoic appearance. See detailed description for appearance and ghostly aspects.
Onryo Spirit (Main Antagonist): A hauntingly beautiful character representing a tragic 1700's Japanese royalty turned vengeful spirit. See detailed description for appearance and clothing.
Small Riverbank Environment: An introductory tutorial stage set on a mist-shrouded riverbank with ghostly cherry blossoms and ominous spirits. The environment should reflect the transition from the mortal world to the spirit realm.
Both characters should have at least an idle animation.

Character Descriptions:

-Onryo Spirit:
Gender: Female

Time Period: 1700's Japanese Royalty

Appearance: The character has a hauntingly beautiful appearance. She has long, flowing hair with straight-across bangs that partially cover her eyes, giving her a mysterious and eerie aura. Her skin is pale, and her eyes are dark and intense, with a touch of sadness and anger in them.

Clothing: She wears traditional Japanese royal attire from the 1700s, featuring an exquisite kimono with intricate patterns, possibly with faded or tattered edges to indicate her tragic fate. The kimono should be a rich, deep color, like dark crimson or black, symbolizing her vengeful spirit. She may also have some ethereal, ghostly elements to her attire, like tattered, flowing sleeves that seem to drift in a phantom wind.

Accessories: She carries a yumi bow, a traditional Japanese longbow, as a symbol of her former status and her vengeful intent.

Expression: Her expression should convey a mix of sadness, anger, and otherworldly intensity, as she is an Onryo seeking revenge for her tragic fate.


Appearance: The character has a stoic and determined appearance, with shoulder-length hair that flows freely. His hair can have a slightly disheveled look to symbolize his transition to a vengeful spirit. His face bears the scars and battle-hardened features of a samurai.

Clothing: He wears traditional samurai garments, which consist of a hakama (wide-legged trousers) and a kimono. These clothes may have ghostly elements like tattered edges or a faint, ethereal glow to signify his spirit status. The colors of his attire can be deep, muted shades of blue or gray.

Accessories: As a samurai, he should have a katana, the iconic Japanese sword, hanging from a sash or obi belt. The katana's hilt and scabbard can be decorated with traditional symbols or markings.

Expression: While he is a vengeful spirit, his expression should be resolute and determined, reflecting his role as the protagonist seeking to counter the Onryo's malevolence. There could be a hint of sadness or determination in his eyes.

Ghostly Aspects: To emphasize his ghostly nature, you can incorporate subtle spectral effects. Perhaps he has a faint, ghostly glow or a semi-transparent quality, making him appear otherworldly. You can also add wisps of energy or ethereal patterns around him.

Environment Description:

-Create a captivating riverbank environment that sets the stage for the game's narrative. Think mist, cherry blossoms, and an otherworldly atmosphere.

The first stage serves as an introductory tutorial related to traditional Japanese beliefs about the afterlife. Players guide the samurai's spirit as he embarks on a journey across the Sanzu River, a treacherous passage to the afterlife. The setting is a mist-shrouded riverbank with ghostly cherry blossoms and ominous spirits. The theme focuses on the samurai's transition from the mortal world to the spirit realm.

Submission Guidelines:
-Submit your pixel art entries in a format that best showcases your work.
-Include any relevant animations for the characters (e.g., idle animation).
-Provide a brief explanation of your creative process and design choices.

The selected artist will have the opportunity to work with us on an ongoing basis as we develop the game.

Recommended Skills

Employer Feedback

“Rithesh payed attention to detail and delivered excellent work. ”

Profile image bombardierjames, Canada.

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Public Clarification Board

  • artworm1985
    • 6 months ago

    This seems like a very interesting project and will definitely enter. I would like to know what is the size of game sprite or canvas size? Because sprite size matters a lot while creating pixel art. Thanks

    • 6 months ago
    1. bombardierjames
      Contest Holder
      • 6 months ago

      Thank you for submitting you question! I do not have a specific canvas size in mind, so you can pick what you have preference to. I would suggest 32px tall at minimum, and to go with a modern pixel look, not anything too retro (such as a GameBoy or limited color palette sprite).

      • 6 months ago

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