Since I started working on this whole "Hardcore Alicia Microgame" (because yeah, it IS a microgame, as in... Hentai microgame, not just a breathing animation cycle), a bit of time has passed. Certainly, at least, more time than what I normally need when working on a common illustration...
Now, even though I'm pretty sure 99% of you can understand that a more ellaborate and involved process ought to take more time than usual, I still wanted to explain a bit, even if just for curiosity's sake, about the reasons WHY it takes more time... So I'll touch on the main reasons here, so you have a better understanding of what I'm dealing with and, therefore, why I'm not just releasing the damn thing like... Dunno, in 24 hours or something, so here we go with the main reasons:
1) THERE'S A FUCKTON OF PARTS IN NEED OF MAKING:
This one is pretty self explanatory. Flash animations can be done in two ways: Frame per frame, and object oriented. I work with the later. Instead of the traditional animation style consisting of drawing each frame again and again, I create static objects (i.e: the eyes, a hand, one leg, both sets of hairbangs, the mouth, the arm, etc.) and arrange them in layers that are later imported into the editing software (Flash, in this case). These individual objects are later arranged into their intended positions, and finally they're pulled and dragged across the screen in a looping pattern to give the illusion of movement. This way of developing each individual part forces you to think ahead of time, having to consider how visible said part will be in every animation, and for that effect, you need to be extra careful working on each piece as to not realize way too late that you need to rework that part from scratch because it's not flexible enough to fulfill it's intended movement pattern (i.e.: a way too short forearm will show it's cuts and joints if you have to move the hand too far from the wrist, and you'll have to redraw the full forearm to account for that.)
2) SAI's FUCKING 256 LAYER LIMIT:
This is a limitation I hate, but I cannot do much about it, other than do cumbersome workarounds... Usually, I don't even get near the 256 layer limit when working with static illustrations... But object oriented animation projects don't work that way. Each individual object composing the full piece requires it's own shadow layer, it's own light layer, it's own lineart layer, etc. etc. etc... Multiply all those layers for each object you need separated and working independently from one another, and you're expected to hit that limit way too soon... In order to avoid that, I'm forced to create multiple .sai files accounting for each extra object or two that otherwise would go beyond said limit, making a mess of the workplace (it's like having to carve an entire tree to make a new set of chopsticks while throwing the 99% excess wood... It's slow, it's inconvenient, it's tiring, it's counterproductive... And it's the only workaround aviable, sadly).
3) THE CODING PROCESS:
Ok, animation per se isn't that hard when you know what you're doing. I don't take all that much time working on animation loops... But the integration into a cohesive game is another story. Programming even the dumbest shit on AS3 is a nightmare for the uninitiated... And even when I'm not (I've made several games on it already), it's still a pretty convoluted, counter-intuitive language to work with.
Music and SFX. All original. That's what I thrive for. I'm tired of licence free stock audio, so I'm learning to compose and whatnot, so even when the game gets done, I still have to account for the BGM and SFX, and that's gonna take a bit of time as well.
5) GETTING BETTER:
What's the point of making stuff if you don't aim for outperforming yourself? As much as I know what I'm doing, I still take a lot of time trying styles, techniques and whatnot in order to improve my animations from previous experiences, and that experimentation takes time... The alternative would be to simply stick with what I know and shrug my shoulders... Bitch, please... THIS IS FATE WE TALKIN'!!
P.S.: Just in case you're wondering about the status of the whole thing, I'm steadily working on it. Most parts are fully drawn, coloured and ready to be exported into the animation board, so I'm halfway there. I need to finish some alternative parts, and then I'll be ready to move into the animation part of the project, so be patient
I'll upload a "breathimation" later, when I start the animation process, so you can have an idea of what to expect ;D