Easy Way To Make Cool Classic Style Screen Graphics? [Need Help With M_DOOM]

8/7/2012 UPDATE: I need help with the M_DOOM graphic. Look at this post for more info.

Hey guys I was wondering if there was a way to make screens for Doom WADs such as the title screen, the M_DOOM graphic seen in the menu, the credits screen and the ending screen (or screens as seen in Doom/The Ultimate Doom). I mean, is there a free graphic making software or freeware that I might have or do not have that can help me make cool screens so that my WAD would look cool along with some tips to help me do it?

I made some title screens but they're pretty crappy and in case you're wondering what they look like then here's the title screen (left) and the credit's screen (right) from my first WAD Nitro's Doom:



Yeah the both look like crap. They both have images from Google and were both made with Paint.net, but the left one has Word Art made in Microsoft Word 2007 pasted on the picture while the right one has words typed on it along with my avatar I have.

So what software or freeware could help me make awesome title screens like the ones you find in the Doom IWADs and the popular megawads along with some tips and tricks on how to do it?

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If you can work around its interface, GIMP is supposed to be one of the fuller-featured freeware graphic editors.

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Be aware that it takes more than just a good editor to make good graphic design, though. I'd suggest reading up on some basic rules of design if you want it to look decent. You don't need to be a pro, but just the basics ought to get you by just fine.

The first image isn't too bad, but the second one suffers from horrible contrast issues--I'd advise using a much, much more subtle background for that graphic.

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I recently made two title screens with GIMP:



As you can see, the only difference is that they have different backgrounds of different brick patterns from Doom 2. I tried adding a gradient to the font, but after testing the conversion to PNG to Doom graphic it looked like crap. These examples are still in PNG format but which one do you like better?

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NitroactiveStudios said:

which one do you like better?

I'm partial to the one on the right. With the one on the left, the variance in some brick edges being very sharp and contrasted, and other edges being smooth, it kind of draws your eye away from the center of the image. If I were making it, I'd probably put a low-opacity texture over the text to give it a weathered look, but like you noticed, that kind of stuff can make it look ugly if you're converting it to Doom format. Of course, if you're working with GZDoom, you've nothing to worry about :)

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Damn EarthQuake, that looks nice! How did you do that. Did you use GIMP? If so then what effect did you use?

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I just mess around with layers and blending effects until I get something that looks good. With those yellows though, I guess it's more along the lines of luck when it comes to the Doom palette.

Edit: you might have to manually tweak that dark part on the "N". I didn't realize how "off" it looked until after I uploaded it.

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EarthQuake said:

I just mess around with layers and blending effects until I get something that looks good. With those yellows though, I guess it's more along the lines of luck when it comes to the Doom palette.

That's cool. Mind if I use this? I'll give credit.

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Go for it, you don't even have to credit me. It was literally 3 minutes of work.

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EarthQuake said:

Go for it, you don't even have to credit me. It was literally 3 minutes of work.

OK thank you. Also, do you mind helping out with the M_DOOM graphic as well?

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Here.



Seems a bit more grainy, but perhaps that was because I moved the layer around to give it different detail. It's not perfect, but I think it's good enough for my first M_DOOM graphic.

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OK I have an update. I'm having a bit of trouble with the M_DOOM graphic. When I place the M_DOOM graphic in Slade3, it won't be perfectly centered, so I have to center it by setting the offsets to 45, 4. The WAD works with ZDoom, but when I try to open it with DOSBox or Chocolate Doom, the game will crash after trying to get the main menu options after startup with the error Bad V_DrawPatch. So what can I do to fix this error?

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The problem appears to be the vertical offset. After a bit of trial and error I settled on 33 and -4 (left and down a bit), which were accepted by Chocolate Doom.

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GreyGhost said:

The problem appears to be the vertical offset. After a bit of trial and error I settled on 33 and -4 (left and down a bit), which were accepted by Chocolate Doom.

OK thank you GreyGhost. The centering of the M_DOOM graphic according to your offsets not perfect but I'll figure something out.

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The game engine complicates matters a bit by expecting at least some of the menu and intermission screen graphics to be a specific height and/or width in order to position them on-screen correctly. According to my calculator, an offset of 36 by -21 should have your M_DOOM centered on the same spot as its predecessor, a horizontal offset of 33 just happened to be centered on-screen a little better.

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GreyGhost said:

The game engine complicates matters a bit by expecting at least some of the menu and intermission screen graphics to be a specific height and/or width in order to position them on-screen correctly. According to my calculator, an offset of 36 by -21 should have your M_DOOM centered on the same spot as its predecessor, a horizontal offset of 33 just happened to be centered on-screen a little better.

After doing some measuring with pixels, I found that 47, -4 are good offsets to me. Thanks again for your your help.

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