A new approach to game design, making use of Adobe After Effects.

A new approach to game visual design

I’ve recently been working on a new game project, ‘Project M’.  I’ve decided to step to the side of game programming for a while and tackle some of the visual design for the gameplay and menu system.

Normally on a project :

  • • I’ll do some rough sketches,
  • • Create some images in Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator.
  • • Import it all into GameSalad (my preferred Game developing software)
  • • Then start adding images to actors and rules to make the actors scale/swing/bounce/fade and slide into position.


This last step takes considerable time and takes away a lot of instant control that I would normally have when animating in software like Adobe After Effects, which happens to be software I use on a daily basis for various cool corporate motion graphics.

So I’ve decided to change my work flow to incorporate ‘After Effects’ and it’s working really well.

My new game design and development


It may seem like an extra unnecessary step but I really think the freedom to design animation, colour schemes, and layouts so quickly will have a great impact on the game when it is finally created in GameSalad.

Also another benefit is that if I make any changes to images created in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator they’re automatically updated inside After Effects to see how the changes in design affect the games look as a whole.

I would share what I’ve been making so far, but the salads not quite ready yet…

One last tip: Making use of the Adobe Kuler website to create a unique complimentary colour palette is another great way to ensure a cool final game design. These Kuler palettes are now integrated with ‘Adobe Illustrator CC’ making it even easier to create a consistent game design aesthetic.

Anyway, I hope this approach might appeal to other developers.

The Creative Cloud CC package is obviously not the cheapest, but if you use it for other things or if games are your full time job it might be worth considering… you can at always do the 30 day trial

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