Pacman into a Tetris [ Animation ]

Pacman into a Tetris [ Animation ]

Carlos F. Izquierdo
by Stamp on 20 May 2021

This time through a game of tetris that they gave me, I made an animation where I recreated that game and a giant pacman appears in the middle of the game.

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This work consisted of a video that they gave me to do a recreation and add something new to it, in my case I made a pacman appear at the end of deleting 3 rows to eat all the tetris.


1.Select a fragment of the video where a couple of basic mechanics will be appreciated, in my case the fragment is from 01:05 to 01:13.

2. Once the fragment is selected, look at it determinedly in slow motion to analyzethe frames and all the details of how the animation worked. Slow motion did with the VLC hitting the "-" key. Although there is also another way to get the frames and it is through Adobe encoder to pass the video to .jpg in order to get all the frames.

A couple of details that I found is that there is a moment where the cube and form a figure weird, this is obviously something important to put in the animation. 

I also realized that the movements of the blocks do not go in a row but rather They are doing a movement in turns, the speed could vary so later later I would write down the velocities of each of the figures.

3. Once having analyzed the frames I looked for an image of sprites from the original Tetris of gameboy to recreate the figures and the stage. I also used a font called "Pokemon GB", this font I already had from others projects, but in theory with the font "early gameboy" should give the same result:

4. Now I recreate the figures using the illustrator. These are all the figures I use

I also did a recreation of how all the figures were in the second 01:05 so as not to collapse the after effects to many pieces and this is how it looks:

5. Now I opened the after effects and the first thing I did was organize the stage for the first frame and the static stage.

To do this, use text in the areas of "score", "level" and "lines" also try to fix the static scenario which I regret not having done a recreation before. For the figures I arranged them using the static image of how the chips were and I put the figure above.

6. Now I started to animate the movement of the inverted L, for this I gave the stopwatch and I began to move the position carefully. I knew that the movement of the chips is totally lateral, so it cannot happen that the piece makes diagonal movements

The movement was in frames and not linear so I put a frame in the position it was before executing the displacement, so it gave that gamboy game effect very similar to Tetris that it was stumbling. I had to cheer up a little more and by being to work more but this way I would achieve the animation quite the same as that of the original.

7. To change the area tab from the next to the stage what I did was duplicate the object, put one on the stage and another leave it in the area of ​​the next. Once i did this I investigated how the animation works in Tetris and apparently it goes for 3 frames where 1 is the figure1 in the next area, then in frame 2 figure1 disappears and another figure in the following one, and in frame 3 figure2 appears (the copy of figure1) in the stage. So I replicated that animation by making the object no longer in the stage in those precise moments

8. To do the rotation I only made a frame before the rotation there was a frame With normal rotation, Tetris rotations are only 90º or -90º so only he mentally calculated how much the rotation was plus the degrees.

After this he fixed the position because the center of the figure was wrong, this was more trial and error until you find the right position.

9. I repeated these processes with all the figures and reached the area to make a row disappear, for this I precomposed everything related to figures that were on stage (figures of the area of ​​the following figure no) by means of the pre-compose button that appears when I press right click on a selection of layers and then duplicate it four times that new composition:

The first piece would be the top of the row, the second the bottom piece, the third would serve to make the blink animation (it would be the composition, but transformed into gray) and the finalize the entire composition without masks to make an effect at the end. In composition 1 and in composition 2 I put some masks to select the parts that they would stay after deleting one of the rows this will help us after the animation

To make the animation I only put a fill effect to the composition 3 of the figures

Once I did this, I played with the opacity of the effect and thus it would give the feeling that it was blinking the row, the other rows would not be seen because it had composition 1 and composition 2 covering those rows, once the animation finished, that composition would disappear.

For the white blink at the end it was the same effect, but only changing the opacity of the composition 4.

Once the effect was finished, I would simply remove composition 4 from the scene and lower the composition 1.

in this way when there was a sound the letters changed to give a feeling that it is not an animation but rather the game.

The pacman part

1. The first thing I did was think about how the animation was going to be, I usually make a storyboard of the entire animation, but being such a short animation I didn't see it as necessary, in this case I thought that a pacman would eat all the chips once it had elapsed the whole tetris play.

2. Once having done this, look for references of how the textures of the pacman are, in this case I had to make two different textures, one for the pacman still and another with the mouth open, in this way if I combine them it would give the effect that moving. The palette decided to use the tetris palette to look like pacman had sneaked into the game, so I decided to make it gray.

3. Now what I had to do was make a new composition within the after effects and make a simple animation, in this case I applied the sound so characteristic of pacman and anime in synchrony with the sound that I put so that the viewer could better recognize the figure of pacman nothing but you will hear the sound and with the movement very similar to this.

4. Once I had done the animation I created another composition in this one I put the original composition of the animation and I downloaded the last frame through Adobe Media encoder selecting the frame and exporting it to JPG.

5. Now what I did was place the pacman inside the stage and I was applying the linear movement from top to bottom, this time I did not do it at fps because that way it seemed that it had slipped directly into the game.

6. Once all this was done I put the image I had of the last frame again and I put a mask on it to remove the walls and so this mask was eating the chips while the pacman moved. In addition, I also put a white solid to cover the figures of the other image, so it gave a feeling that the figures had completely disappeared.

7. The last thing that remains was to fix the audio, for this what I did was that first the sound of the pacman movement was reproduced before it was seen so as not to saturate the viewer with information, to make it more realistic I made the tetris sound go down at the same time that the movement of the pacman rose and thus the viewer will pay more attention to the pacman. At the same time when the pacman is coming out, its sound disappears and the sound of tetris is no longer there because the pacman has eaten it.

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