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Although I'm not into game development, after finding about this popular 2D pixel animation program while researching something else, I decided to cover it here on GOL in the hopes that someone finds it useful or time saving. Aseprite is a tool developed by small Argentine developer Igara Studio, that has been around in some form for almost two decades, having its version 1.0 released on Jun 6, 2014. Right now on Steam it has 2897 positive reviews by Steam users, out of 2923 total reviews, reaching as a consequence an 'Overwhelmingly Positive' status.

This is the official trailer, which features a particularly catchy music:

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These are its main features, which were extracted from the official site:

Animation & Layers: Create, copy, move, drag & drop layers; create, copy, move, link, drag & drop frames or cels; include several animations in the same file tagging sections; loop a section in forward, reverse, ping-pong modes, change preview speed; see other frames as reference to animate; choose different onion skin modes.

Color & Painting: Copy & paste, drag & drop, resize palette; palette entries with alpha value; select color harmonies; create light and shadows with the shading ink; create perfect strokes for pixel-art; avoid extreme pixel distortions when rotating tiny sprites; create patterns repeating the image in a 3x3 grid; create custom brushes for dithering; composite layers to create color effects.

Import & Export Files: Open or save a sequence of images; create animations and save them as .gif files; export your work to sprite sheets in .png and .json files; recovery [sic] your sprites in case of crash; integrate Aseprite in your assets pipeline with the command-line interface (CLI); store several animations in one texture atlas.

Besides, you will find on the official site well detailed documentation, video tutorials and an always handy Cheat Sheet. There is also a community forum and a Discord channel. The source code is also open on GitHub, although it's not open source as it's under their own EULA but it does allow you to compile it yourself free.

You can also check the trial to see if it's a program that may suit your professional needs. If that were the case, you have several options to buy it: itch.io (DRM-free + Steam key), Humble Store (DRM-free + Steam key) and Steam (DRM-free). Just as a curiosity, it seems it was possible to get an itch.io key if you bought the program from Steam, but apparently the developers later stepped back after some people took advantage of that option.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
Tags: Apps, Game Dev | Apps: Aseprite
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8 comments

madpinger 23 Feb
I picked this up, a while back now. Never ended up using it much, at least yet. I find GIMP does what I want for the most part and still giving Krita a shot for stuff I wouldn't just do in inkscape. It def should come in handy when I get back to Godot some more. ^.^

It does run well, and does as advertised at anyrate.
Looks almost as good as Deluxe Paint IV... almost.
redneckdrow 23 Feb
Used to use it, but since it went proprietary, I've found alternatives. Such as Pixelorama (really neat), Krita (my favorite program to color images with), Gimp, Inkscape, and so on.

I just hate it when a FOSS app goes proprietary for reasons such as him being upset about it being in distros repositories. Why did he bother making it GPL if he didn't want it distributed and modified in the first place then?! :><:

Also, Krita seems to do okay with sales, so Aseprite's dev's argument about open source hurting his bottom line is crap! He posted a huge talk about it years ago, which I'm too lazy to look up. Why does he think we call Linux based OSes "Distrobutions"?

Sorry :S:, had to get that out of my system. Politics aside it is a good program, just haven't used it in a while.
PopeRigby 23 Feb
redneckdrowUsed to use it, but since it went proprietary, I've found alternatives. Such as Pixelorama (really neat), Krita (my favorite program to color images with), Gimp, Inkscape, and so on.

I just hate it when a FOSS app goes proprietary for reasons such as him being upset about it being in distros repositories. Why did he bother making it GPL if he didn't want it distributed and modified in the first place then?! :><:

Also, Krita seems to do okay with sales, so Aseprite's dev's argument about open source hurting his bottom line is crap! He posted a huge talk about it years ago, which I'm too lazy to look up. Why does he think we call Linux based OSes "Distrobutions"?

Sorry :S:, had to get that out of my system. Politics aside it is a good program, just haven't used it in a while.

Totally agree. Fortunately, somebody forked it on the last commit before the license was changed. It's called LibreSprite, and it's what I've been using.
redneckdrow 24 Feb
PopeRigby
redneckdrowUsed to use it, but since it went proprietary, I've found alternatives. Such as Pixelorama (really neat), Krita (my favorite program to color images with), Gimp, Inkscape, and so on.

I just hate it when a FOSS app goes proprietary for reasons such as him being upset about it being in distros repositories. Why did he bother making it GPL if he didn't want it distributed and modified in the first place then?! :><:

Also, Krita seems to do okay with sales, so Aseprite's dev's argument about open source hurting his bottom line is crap! He posted a huge talk about it years ago, which I'm too lazy to look up. Why does he think we call Linux based OSes "Distrobutions"?

Sorry :S:, had to get that out of my system. Politics aside it is a good program, just haven't used it in a while.

Totally agree. Fortunately, somebody forked it on the last commit before the license was changed. It's called LibreSprite, and it's what I've been using.

True, but see this.
elmapul 24 Feb
redneckdrowUsed to use it, but since it went proprietary, I've found alternatives. Such as Pixelorama (really neat), Krita (my favorite program to color images with), Gimp, Inkscape, and so on.

I just hate it when a FOSS app goes proprietary for reasons such as him being upset about it being in distros repositories. Why did he bother making it GPL if he didn't want it distributed and modified in the first place then?! :><:

Also, Krita seems to do okay with sales, so Aseprite's dev's argument about open source hurting his bottom line is crap! He posted a huge talk about it years ago, which I'm too lazy to look up. Why does he think we call Linux based OSes "Distrobutions"?

Sorry :S:, had to get that out of my system. Politics aside it is a good program, just haven't used it in a while.

if its so easy to develop an open source software and make an living out of it, do it yourself.
the asesprite developer has no obligation in doing so, or in fixing his software once it was broken, not by him but by the mantainers of the repositories.

there is a good reason why projects like Renpy dont support the version on the repos (they dont even work, whetever did the renpy packaging for ubuntu didnt tested it, because an 2 minutes test could attest that it dont work)
perhaps that is the goal, create problems to sell solutions, sell integration, certification, deployment services.
redneckdrow 24 Feb
elmapul
redneckdrowUsed to use it, but since it went proprietary, I've found alternatives. Such as Pixelorama (really neat), Krita (my favorite program to color images with), Gimp, Inkscape, and so on.

I just hate it when a FOSS app goes proprietary for reasons such as him being upset about it being in distros repositories. Why did he bother making it GPL if he didn't want it distributed and modified in the first place then?! :><:

Also, Krita seems to do okay with sales, so Aseprite's dev's argument about open source hurting his bottom line is crap! He posted a huge talk about it years ago, which I'm too lazy to look up. Why does he think we call Linux based OSes "Distrobutions"?

Sorry :S:, had to get that out of my system. Politics aside it is a good program, just haven't used it in a while.

if its so easy to develop an open source software and make an living out of it, do it yourself.
the asesprite developer has no obligation in doing so, or in fixing his software once it was broken, not by him but by the mantainers of the repositories.

there is a good reason why projects like Renpy dont support the version on the repos (they dont even work, whetever did the renpy packaging for ubuntu didnt tested it, because an 2 minutes test could attest that it dont work)
perhaps that is the goal, create problems to sell solutions, sell integration, certification, deployment services.


First, please don't put words in my mouth. I said that it's possible to make money with FOSS, not that it was easy. Paid support is the best model in my opinion, like Krita, or Red Hat.

I also never said that the versions in the repos should be supported. In fact they should not, that's the job of the maintainer of the package for a given "Distro". That's why the no warranty clause exists in the GPL.

I'm saying that the author of ASEprite spouting "I don't like repo binaries existing" is an idiotic reason to go proprietary! Changing the license was the wrong way to monetize the program

As to doing it myself: hard to do with one hand. I have Cerebral Palsy and I write scripts (bash and python mostly) in my free time. My hero in the world of FOSS is Bruce Perens who shares the same malady.

I live in a state where healthcare is a roiling cesspit at the moment, subject to change at the will of politicians (read: morons) on either side of the aisle.

Don't make assumptions about my ability to do anything, that hurts. I struggle with my handicap every day, and I make sure that it never becomes a disability. Also, FYI, I have paid to support open source projects, so I'm not someone who wants something for nothing. I feel that I'm unqualified to contribute, sometimes, because I never went to college. I still code anyway, and nothing's ever going to stop me from doing what I love! So take all this for what you will, but please, assume nothing.
PopeRigby 25 Feb
redneckdrow
PopeRigby
redneckdrowUsed to use it, but since it went proprietary, I've found alternatives. Such as Pixelorama (really neat), Krita (my favorite program to color images with), Gimp, Inkscape, and so on.

I just hate it when a FOSS app goes proprietary for reasons such as him being upset about it being in distros repositories. Why did he bother making it GPL if he didn't want it distributed and modified in the first place then?! :><:

Also, Krita seems to do okay with sales, so Aseprite's dev's argument about open source hurting his bottom line is crap! He posted a huge talk about it years ago, which I'm too lazy to look up. Why does he think we call Linux based OSes "Distrobutions"?

Sorry :S:, had to get that out of my system. Politics aside it is a good program, just haven't used it in a while.

Totally agree. Fortunately, somebody forked it on the last commit before the license was changed. It's called LibreSprite, and it's what I've been using.

True, but see this.

Ehh. An unsupported but fully working open source project is better than a supported but proprietary project, in my opinion.
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