CAP 27 - Part 9 - Sprite Submissions

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Jho

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CAP27 So Far!

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We now know what CAP27 looks like, now its time to make it some sprites!

Sprite Rules
  • Sprites should be inspired by the winning designs from the Art Poll. It does not need to be an exact rendition of every detail of the designs; "artistic license" is granted to all spriters. However, drastic deviation from the selected art designs is discouraged.
  • All sprites (front and back) can have a maximum size of 96x96.
  • All sprites (front and back) must have a complete, unbroken, distinguishable outline. It does not need to be a black outline, but it must be clearly distinguishable from the adjacent interior colors of the sprite
  • No action effects, move effects, environment effects or additional objects can be rendered on or around the Pokemon.
  • Sprites must be in PNG format.
  • Use transparent backgrounds.
  • All sprites must be scratch sprites that are completely original works by the spriter. Fusions of other sprites or pixel-overs of other artist's lineart (including the main design) are not allowed.
  • Do not alter, fuse, recolor or otherwise modify another spriter's submission unless the original artist explicitly gives permission.
  • All sprites (front and back) must use the same color palette.
  • All sprites (front and back) must use roughly the same size and pose when compared to each other.
Final Submission Post

All spriters must make a final submission post conforming to the sprite rules (listed above) and the following:
  • The post must have "Final Submission" (in bold) as the first line, with the sprites at the top, and any additional description or comments (if applicable) below them.
  • Final submissions must contain a minimum of 2 sprites - Front and Back. If the winning design has supporting art with gender differences, spriters may choose to include those gender differences (Male and Female versions of each), for a total of 4 sprites. Gender differences are NOT required. Spriters cannot create new gender differences.
  • Only submit ONE PNG that contains all the submitted sprites. Please do not submit separate images for every sprite. One "cutsheet" makes it easier for mods to track submissions and ensure each complete set of sprites stay intact.
  • The final submission image must be hosted on a reliable image hosting service (such as Imgur). Do not use the forum's 'Drop/upload image' feature. Do not use the 'Attach a photo' tool on messaging apps (e.g. Discord). Do not use Iaza or Ezimba.
  • Only make one (1) final submission post.
Advice for Spriters
  • Compare your sprites against other Pokemon sprites to make sure your sprites match the in-game sprites in size and style.
  • Please look at your transparent sprites against different colored backgrounds, not just white. In Pokémon Showdown, the sprite will be displayed on multiple background colors in battle.
  • We recommend you use no more than 16 colors for your sprites' palette. This limit may be broken for complex designs.

Art Design:

by Quanyails
 

Quanyails

is a Top Artistis a Forum Moderatoris a Community Contributor Alumnus
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Here's the latest WIP for the model sheet I've sent to the modelers, which might be helpful for spriters! It might get a few tweaks in the future, keep in mind.



Edit: Version of the design without glowing effects here!
 
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WIP



Pretty happy with how this one turned out. The tail gradient was a bit of a challenge, but I decided to follow Dragapult's example and used just four colors for it which were also used as part of the shading to keep the color palette relatively conservative. Now to do the back sprite...
 

MrDollSteak

formerly pokehimon
is a Pre-Contributor
WIP

Here is my front sprite for CAP 27! Pretty sure this is basically finished. Time to work on the back, which I think will be infinitely more challenging. I might also resize this down a little bit since it's really quite tall, comparable skinny dragons like Flygon are quite a bits shorter. Mind you it compares favorably to Haxorus in terms of dimensions and head size, so it may not even need to change.

CAP 27 Sprite.png

I picked a pose that was similar to the supporting art, but standing to be more in line with other BW style sprites.

EDIT: Here's the Backsprite!

CAP 27 Back Sprite.png


Thanks to Quanyails, Zephyr, Amamama, Roland and others on discord for feedback (apologies if I've left you off there, these are just the ones who I remember)

One thing to note is that the little line pattern I've added on the back is a bit of creative license as I found it looked a bit too boring otherwise. I'd love Quany's thought on this as its their design of course! I think it could work because I've based it somewhat on the stripes that fireworks actually have. It could feasibly line up with the bottom of the chevron even if its not visible on the real art.
 
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It was much harder than I thought, and still don't think I completely nailed it, so comments are more than welcome.
1589573652935.png

Hopefully I also have time to do the backsprite. We'll see...

Ps: If that is your first time spriting Slapperfish, that is awesome!!
 
Here's my thoughts:

Slapperfish: It's definitely decent for a first time, but at the same time it's definitely an amateur job. Here's what I identify as critically crippling flaws: 1) The arms look almost identical in pose, and that pose doesn't fit with the rest of the body. 2) The color shading is too similar, resulting in very little visible contrast; make your brights brighter and your darks darker. 3) The anatomy is off. The head appears to sit too far back on the neck, resulting in too small of a chin and making the head smaller. The arms lack the bulge that indicates muscle in the upper arm, which is key to defining an elbow for straight arms. The legs also appear to be attached to the lower frill, rather than just under it, resulting in a bizarrely sturdy-looking bottom half that doesn't match the top. 4) The pose is too static. The legs should be positioned differently from eachother, as should be the arms, so that it doesn't look like it's doing nothing. Look up contrapposto and other dynamic poses for inspiration. Right now, your pose looks like it's got a spike going through it nailing it to the floor, unable to act.

Again, it's decent for a first attempt at spriting, and I'm not gonna claim I'd be necessarily better. I just went through a bunch of art critiques in college art classes and these are the points we'd covered there that you could use to improve your work.

Falchion: Yours is quite decent overall, but here's my suggestions: Firstly, it feels too big. Sure you can use the full 96x96 size, but the scale and detail here makes this feel as big as most legendaries. I'd expect it to be like 15 feet high, and I don't think that's the intent of the art. The outline for the tip of the tail is an awkward color. It's too saturated and light hue, so it results in it kinda being hard to look at, and it blends into the white background. On a similar note, the pure black line of the tail going into the end bit also looks really off; I'd suggest switching to a less harsh color at that point. The black on neon light blue feels jarring. Another thing that feels off is the position of his right leg; it feels like it attaches lower on the body than the other one. My last bit of feedback is that this art feels like a blatant copy paste of the original art; it doesn't improve it or show anything new. It just remakes it, smaller.

MrDollSteak: The tail on both your sprites is underwhelming; the purely dark coloring makes shading impossible to see, and the gradient from the original is missing. In addition, the head seems to be abnormally larger in the front sprite, which makes the arms seem comically short by comparison. Another bit is that you used black lines for the borders between colors, which feels awkward and jarring on the lighter ones, like the white to orange transition in the head. The back sprite is really excellent though, particularly the upper body. My two issues with it are that the visible arm is way too short and small and lacks any muscle in the forearm, and second that the left leg's lack of visibility makes it feel awkwardly disattached; I'd probably change the pose for that leg..

Noobiess: The head here is far too large. Look at the base art. The frill barely extends beyond the shoulder puffs. Meanwhile, your torso also suffers a proportion difference from the base art. Look at the side view shown: The body is a single long snakelike segment. In your art, the torso is visibly separate from the tail, rather than leading into it. If you shrink the head and narrow the torso, the art is pretty solid. The color especially is vibrant and eyecatching, though the shading could use brighter brights and darker darks. The pose does need a lot of work. You've basically T-Posed him; none of his limbs are being used for anything.

--- --- ---

Anyways, I know this is a lot of negative feedback for everyone, but it's all intended to be constructive; none of these are terrible sprites.
 

Quanyails

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Moderator
Krazyguy75:

In response to your feedback on MrDollSteak's sprite:

Keep in mind that the "gradient" is a lighting effect, and the version of the design I posted without the lighting effects in the image here doesn't keep the gradient. I'm not aware of any Gen. V sprites that really shade in other body parts due to a lighting effect.


E.g., Charizard's tail is made of fire, but it doesn't provide a secondary light source on the tail. You could remove the fire, and the rest of the sprite's lighting would still look natural. Other examples of Pokemon designs with parts that glow include the Chinchou and Litwick lines, which also don't use the glowing part as a secondary light source.

In addition, the sprites here are meant to match the Gen. V style, which means that some details are subject to compromise in order for a design to read clearly within 96x96 pixels. I've compared CAP 27 against several other Pokemon sprites with similar body shape here:




I'm not sure what you'd be able to do to alter the size/body of the sprite while matching the size and proportions of in-game sprites.

I don't have a problem, personally, with the outline between the pale part of the head and the frill. I think it gets the division across.

I also think the pose on noobiess's sprite is totally fine in-line with in-game sprites. :)

--

Pikaman_Ultra, I certainly don't think Falchion's sprite is an "easy win". Here's what it currently looks like compared to in-game sprites:




Even after shrinking the sprite down, you can still clearly see that:
  • The linework on it is a lot rougher than what the in-game sprites have,
  • The pose isn't as idle as those of the in-game sprites--it looks like it's swaying to the right, and
  • The lighting on the tail doesn't match how in-game sprites use lighting alongside glowing effects (see above section)
I'm excited for Falchion's next improvements on the sprite, but I don't think shrinking the sprite down is the only thing that needs to be changed. :)
 

MrDollSteak

formerly pokehimon
is a Pre-Contributor
Thanks Quany for your defense of my sprite! I appreciate you also posing it next to some similar Dragon like creatures it saves me doing it, and I think that, dare I say, it fits in quite well with the rest of them!

With that in mind I also wanted to post the most recent versions of my sprites. The back sprite's pattern has been designed in consultation with Quany, and should act as the "canon" pattern for the back of the skirt frill for the other spriters' reference!

CAP 27 Sprite Sheet.png


I'm more or less ready to final sub these, but will probably do a few more little tweaks based on QC feedback!
 
Pikaman_Ultra, I certainly don't think Falchion's sprite is an "easy win". Here's what it currently looks like compared to in-game sprites:




Even after shrinking the sprite down, you can still clearly see that:
  • The linework on it is a lot rougher than what the in-game sprites have,
  • That the pose isn't as idle as those of the in-game sprites--it looks like it's swaying to the right, and
  • The lighting on the tail doesn't match how in-game sprites use lighting alongside glowing effects (see above section)
I'm excited for Falchion's next improvements on the sprite, but I don't think shrinking the sprite down is the only thing that needs to be changed. :)
Hi, in my message I did not imply that Falchion's sprite stood up to the actual in game sprites, but i'd still say that it far outclasses anything else submitted. While not perfect, it is definately the best of the 4 here. To take a page out of your book, here's the current sprites posed together.
Sprite 1.png
Sprite 2.png
Sprite 3.png
Sprite 4.png

Falchion's is clearly the most detailed of the bunch, as well as capturing CAP 27's personality the best.
Also, I feel it is slightly harsh to compare any of these sprites to the pokemon you used, they are all dark and intimidating in at least one area. Comparing them to other more palet similar pokemon imo is a better comparison. For example, we'll take Falchion's and Mrdollsteak's.
Pansear.png
download.png
Sprite 1.png
Sprite 2.png
magmortar.png

(Sorry for poor size scaling, these were the best images I could find.)
When compared to these sprites, the sprites entered actually look very up to scratch! I believe that all the designs are brilliant, but Falchion takes the cake by a long run for me.
 

MrDollSteak

formerly pokehimon
is a Pre-Contributor
Hi, in my message I did not imply that Falchion's sprite stood up to the actual in game sprites, but i'd still say that it far outclasses anything else submitted. While not perfect, it is definately the best of the 4 here. To take a page out of your book, here's the current sprites posed together.
View attachment 245790View attachment 245791View attachment 245792View attachment 245793
Falchion's is clearly the most detailed of the bunch, as well as capturing CAP 27's personality the best.
Also, I feel it is slightly harsh to compare any of these sprites to the pokemon you used, they are all dark and intimidating in at least one area. Comparing them to other more palet similar pokemon imo is a better comparison. For example, we'll take Falchion's and Mrdollsteak's.
View attachment 245796View attachment 245800View attachment 245801View attachment 245802View attachment 245803
(Sorry for poor size scaling, these were the best images I could find.)
When compared to these sprites, the sprites entered actually look very up to scratch! I believe that all the designs are brilliant, but Falchion takes the cake by a long run for me.
Obviously I have a bit of a horse in this race, but that aside, I think you really need to look more closely at the shading of any sprite from DPPTHGSS or BW. Whether or not you look at Sceptile, Flareon, or Magmortar it should be obvious that they all have very pronounced black outlines at the right and bottom of each part of the Pokemon, and their other colours are quite saturated.

I also think your point about sprites submitted here not needing to stand up to in game sprites is flawed, that's what this sprite stage is about. The sprites are supposed to be as professional as possible so they could feasibly stand next to existing Pokemon sprites in Pokemon Showdown.

It's perfectly fine to like any of the submitted sprites for whatever reason, and I certainly don't want to criticise the other designs, or your choice to like them, I just wanted to point out stylistically what all of our sprites should be aiming to achieve.
 
WIP



So I’m joining the party a bit late since first I had to figure out how to do sprites.
Here is the front view of my sprite.
Since this is my first time spriting any critique Is appreciated.

Edit:

1) I reworked some lines on the hands and feet and added an outline to the tail flame And Added the backsprite

2) Found a way to increase the quality. rReworked the shading and outlines. Will work on outlines of claws and headshape of backsprite later.

3) I think I’m close to my final version with what you can see now. If there are amy suggestions as how to still improve on what I have now, I’m glad to hear them.
 
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WIP



So I’m joining the party a bit late since first I had to figure out how to do sprites.
Here is the front view of my sprite.
Since this is my first time spriting any critique Is appreciated.
That's really good! Though a bit less emphasis on the blue sleeves and lowering the blue string things on its head down angle wise would improve it.
 
So I wanted to respond to bits of this: Firstly, the fact that that is supposed to be lighting wasn't immediately obvious to me. It looked like it was just part of the tail becoming lighter as it led to the back; other similar elements like the antennae (if that's what those are) and legs have similar coloring but don't seem to cast light, so I just assumed the fire on the tail was part of its body that resembled a flame, not an actual flame. But its not that important; I just wanted to explain myself.

That said, I still think the black lines on the internals detract from MrDollSteak's submission. If you look at your examples, internal details, like the separation of Garchomp's spikes/teeth from his body, skeptile's arm leaves from arms, skeptile's chest partition, Flygon's antennae and tail segments, etc all use a shaded color for the separation, not a black outline. The only places which use a black outline are divisions between two dark shaded elements, like Skeptile's mouth, or things that are meant to be clearly separated from the other elements, like Flygon's legs or Haxorus' plating.

CAP27's frill isn't at all similar to those situations; its clearly attached and is a light color merging with another light color. In fact, if anything were to half the black outline, it'd be the left side of the face, which is supposed to be in front of the frill. As for head size, yeah it'd be a tough thing to fix. One thing that could help is just raising the arms slightly; that'd make the torso feel more proportional, despite varying from the art a little bit.

EDIT: I guess I'm not supposed to post examples of possible changes, even if I don't plan on taking any credit for them, unless given explicit permission. MrDollSteak, if you see this, let me know if it's alright to post a comparison image of your current version with a rough edit including some of the changes I recommended.
 
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WIP



Appreciate the feedback guys, but I was just waiting for the thread to get a little bigger before posting an update! And hoo boy, what an update it is! Thanks to the people over on Discord for helping me out with the changes so far!
 
Amamama: I love the pose; it's interesting and dynamic, rather than just copying the source art perfectly. In terms of improvements, I agree with Pikaman's critiques, but there are a few other things I think important. The outline on many of the bright hued parts is too subtle, resulting in it not really feeling like an outline and more just like a slight shading. This is worst on the tail, arms, and claws. I also think the eyes could be more vivid; they look almost white. Honestly, with only a small bit of work this could be a strong contender for a new top pick.

Slapperfish: New art is a drastic improvement and now can contend with the rest of them. That said, it still has some of the same issues I mentioned earlier, such as the pose being too neutral and not dynamic; its feet don't even seem to be firmly placed on the ground. I also think that your shades often are far too close in color to the other parts. Try to make them more intense, clearly dividing light and dark. I also think that it's important to keep darker shading on the lower right hand side of objects and lighter side on the top left; otherwise they start to feel a bit 2D like with the tail and antennae here. Last bit of critique is that the colors are almost too vibrant; try lowering the saturation a bit on the red/orange/yellow bits, as that will make them clash less with the highlighter blue. But overall this is an almost miraculous improvement.
 
Okay. I have to admit I went a little overboard with the proportions. I'm sorry I'm just a big-frill-kind-of-guy I guess:

1589664201836.png
-->
1589664175935.png

Tried the open mouth but not really sure what I prefer.

Also impressed about Amamama sprite skills! I wish my first sprites were as good as yours!

Slapperfish: your shading makes it appear that the light source comes more from the side, while in last-gen sprites the light source comes more from above. Try to use official sprites as reference ;-)
 
WIP



At the behest of the Discord I shrank the sprites down to match the size of the BW sprites for most large reptilian Pokemon; I also did the back sprite and made a couple of edits to the shading and outlining. Thanks for your feedback and kind words, guys, I'm definitely gonna final-sub these things as soon as I can!
 
Falchion: This is a great sprite size and still looks great. The back sprite is good as well; I love the personal touches with the lines on the back. That said the right arm on the back sprite feels a bit awkward and not matching how it looks on the front, where it seems to be reaching out to grab something. The legs also feel a little less study and balanced. And I think it's an intentional design choice to make the tail fire, sleeves, and antennae look glowing on both sprites, but I'm not sure it works, especially when the legs are similar color.

Noobiess: Also great improvement. Torso and sleeves look better, and the head is a much better size. I do want to point out that the mouth is supposed to be blue on the inside according to our source art; that might make it look a bit better; that said I liked the closed mouth version better so far. I do still think that the legs feel a bit too neutral, being on the same vertical level. Also, try to make the shading more noticable and variant across the body.
 
WIP
smogondragon.png

GSC style sprite. Limiting this complex Pokemon to just 4 colors made this difficult, but i had fun making it. I used paint.net to make it.
 
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royesk

delete forever
is a Pre-Contributor
Hey, I'm a pretty washed up spriter that last did any serious spriting work around 10 years ago. I don't know if my schedule will allow me to, but I might attempt to sprite my own submission this week. Until then, here's some friendly feedback for some of the submissions:

MrDollSteak: I'll start by saying that this is my absolute favorite sprite from all submissions sent so far, and the one that most closely resembles the gen5 GameFreak style. The outline work is top notch, and so are the shading and color palette. I think the facing-sideways pose, as demonstrated in your submission and Quanyails's original artwork, is fine for gen4-style sprites but doesn't quite fit in with gen5's animated front sprites, which are predominantly forward-facing. I think changing the posture should be a pretty easy thing for you to do, the body can be rotated and re-shadowed quite easily, and the head can be refitted with ease. I'll reuse the sprites in Quanyails's post to demonstrate this:

The only other things i would adjust are the outline shading (and potentially the color palette) of CAP27's antennas and tail flame, which look like they're glowing in the artwork, so I'd definitely make the outline shading on these parts specifically much lighter, and if there are no color palette constraints, then also make them more neon-y colored. Same with the eyes; going for a dark blue outline on the bottom of the eyes will make them appear more vital, as in the original artwork. I know this was quite nitpicky, but I really do like this sprite and I hope you take some of these comments into consideration. Keep it up!

noobiess: I'll start off by putting your sprite alongside the other 4 sprites above so I can draw stylistic parallels:

I think your sprite has definitely improved a lot after the first round of feedback, especially when it comes to proportions, and I absolutely love the outline work, especially in the head details. I do think shading can be improved, however; as a general rule of thumb, the light source in all gen3-gen5 styles is the top left corner, and not just the top. My main issue here is that the color palette is not contrasted enough to make any shading work stand out; if you look at the sprites above, as well as at MrDollSteak's submission, there's a clear differentiation between different shades on every body part, as well as in the outline where black is being used for the darker parts to give definition. Other than that, a slight readjustment to the body posture to make it more forward-leaning will make it look more stable and in line with comparable sprites from the gen5 era, some additional detail work can be given to the hand claws and upper torso detail pattern (don't be afraid to make these ever so slightly larger in order to give them that crucial definition, as is visible in the other sprites above), the head and arms should be colored in a peach tone as in the original artwork, and I'll repeat the same comment I left for MrDollSteak that I'd like to see the antennas and tail flame appear brighter and more vibrant, as if they're glowing. Again, I know I come off as extremely nitpicky but this is a great sprite and I can't wait to see later iterations, as well as the back sprite.

Amamama: Please save your sprites in a non-obtrusive image format, like PNG. Formats like JPEG wipe out a lot of important fine detail, especially when it comes to pixel art, and I can't provide valuable feedback for it in its current state.

Churdizard: This is a nice effort, but I don't think a gen2-style sprite quite satisfies the sprite project, which so far has been focused on gen5-style sprites. I think it's fairly obvious but this can definitely be reflected better in the OP rules from now on.
 
WIP


I figured I'd been giving a lot of feedback so I might try my hand at spriting. It's a bit rough around the edges, and I don't know if I'll ever get around to doing the back sprite, but here's my first draft.
 
Hey, I'm a pretty washed up spriter that last did any serious spriting work around 10 years ago. I don't know if my schedule will allow me to, but I might attempt to sprite my own submission this week. Until then, here's some friendly feedback for some of the submissions:

MrDollSteak: I'll start by saying that this is my absolute favorite sprite from all submissions sent so far, and the one that most closely resembles the gen5 GameFreak style. The outline work is top notch, and so are the shading and color palette. I think the facing-sideways pose, as demonstrated in your submission and Quanyails's original artwork, is fine for gen4-style sprites but doesn't quite fit in with gen5's animated front sprites, which are predominantly forward-facing. I think changing the posture should be a pretty easy thing for you to do, the body can be rotated and re-shadowed quite easily, and the head can be refitted with ease. I'll reuse the sprites in Quanyails's post to demonstrate this:

The only other things i would adjust are the outline shading (and potentially the color palette) of CAP27's antennas and tail flame, which look like they're glowing in the artwork, so I'd definitely make the outline shading on these parts specifically much lighter, and if there are no color palette constraints, then also make them more neon-y colored. Same with the eyes; going for a dark blue outline on the bottom of the eyes will make them appear more vital, as in the original artwork. I know this was quite nitpicky, but I really do like this sprite and I hope you take some of these comments into consideration. Keep it up!

noobiess: I'll start off by putting your sprite alongside the other 4 sprites above so I can draw stylistic parallels:

I think your sprite has definitely improved a lot after the first round of feedback, especially when it comes to proportions, and I absolutely love the outline work, especially in the head details. I do think shading can be improved, however; as a general rule of thumb, the light source in all gen3-gen5 styles is the top left corner, and not just the top. My main issue here is that the color palette is not contrasted enough to make any shading work stand out; if you look at the sprites above, as well as at MrDollSteak's submission, there's a clear differentiation between different shades on every body part, as well as in the outline where black is being used for the darker parts to give definition. Other than that, a slight readjustment to the body posture to make it more forward-leaning will make it look more stable and in line with comparable sprites from the gen5 era, some additional detail work can be given to the hand claws and upper torso detail pattern (don't be afraid to make these ever so slightly larger in order to give them that crucial definition, as is visible in the other sprites above), the head and arms should be colored in a peach tone as in the original artwork, and I'll repeat the same comment I left for MrDollSteak that I'd like to see the antennas and tail flame appear brighter and more vibrant, as if they're glowing. Again, I know I come off as extremely nitpicky but this is a great sprite and I can't wait to see later iterations, as well as the back sprite.

Amamama: Please save your sprites in a non-obtrusive image format, like PNG. Formats like JPEG wipe out a lot of important fine detail, especially when it comes to pixel art, and I can't provide valuable feedback for it in its current state.

Churdizard: This is a nice effort, but I don't think a gen2-style sprite quite satisfies the sprite project, which so far has been focused on gen5-style sprites. I think it's fairly obvious but this can definitely be reflected better in the OP rules from now on.
Yeah i made it a gen 2 sprite for practice but thanks
 

MrDollSteak

formerly pokehimon
is a Pre-Contributor
Thanks to everyone for the feedback. I've tried out Roysek's (and previously Tomo's on Discord) to try having a more front facing pose to be more inline with average Gen 5 Pokemon, and subsequently to line up more obviously with the backsprite.

CAP 27 Sprite Sheet 2.png
 
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