EXTRA PLANETARY is a short exploration 3D game that I rushed out in roughly two weeks for #LOWREZJAM. It was released through 3 Halves Games and is available to play entirely for free! When I saw the 64x64 pixel restriction, I wanted to try making a 3D game for the first time. Here's how I did it:
To the left is the view of the map from the game, pre-rendering. I made a giant heightmap file in Photoshop and exported it as a raw to import into Unity. The map was then automatically generated from that, fairly simple. I originally was going to use mostly realistic colours, and then last minute decided that a wild colour pallet would be a better option.
To the right is post-rendered. The game itself was created to play at exactly 64x64 pixels to fit the restriction, but I upscaled the frame to 640x640 to keep a perfect nearest neighbour grid in place.
Later on I would add colours that dynamically changed by area. The map was huge and texturing was a problem, so none of the maps actually have any textures! I also had to turn off anti-aliasing and other such things. While this improves performance, the primary goal was to benefit appearance. As it turns out, lack of anti-aliasing helped make the terrain look more distinct, and easier to navigate.
Fog effects were used to achieve the background lighting. In the above graphic, the fog effects were bright red.
As you go through the game you will encounter spinning bright green cubes. Collecting them will give you an item, which will appear atop the game layer. The graphics were made at exactly 64x64 pixels and were simply overlaid—the up-scaling took care of the rest. The pixel art for these overlays were created by Rolos.
There is one "complex" "model" in the game and that is your spaceship. I simple overlaid a bunch of stretched and rotated cubes until I got the above result. I don't think it's a very convincing spaceship, but hey, it's sci-fi, kinda, right?
That's all I got! I mostly posted this because the 3D art forum was surprisingly empty, haha.