Long time no write. I am presently facing far too many distractions, fortunately most of them of a positive nature. I am very busy with my new job at MDH, giving lectures one day at a time, and preparing upcoming lectures on the run. Also, I resumed work on Knard, mostly because respected friend and respected artist, Hennes, finally found the time to complete the artworks. While 50 pages with high quality illustrations was probably a bit overambitious, I am now postitive that we can release Knard before christmas. Besides, my 4 months old daughter, Juna, is doing her best to keep me occupied. Given these suboptimal circumstances (only from an indie game developer perspective of course), I really enjoy this very special time and I actually do get some shit done besides: Polishing Knard is something that has to be done in the end, and even if I can't really do big steps project-wise, it is quite cool to do some animations, and sound effect editing in the late hours.
In this context, I would like to point out the very unique 2D animation tool Spine to those of you, who don't know it yet. Check it out, it's the best choice for people who want to create 2D animations but don't have an artist background that you require (at least to some extent) to do such stuff, e.g., in Adobe After Effects. It's very accessible and that makes it fun for programmers who can use it do prototype their own UI animations and end up with real mesh deformer animations like the laughing troll king on the right..
What's more, in contrast to after effects you don't just export gifs (with shittish quality) or sprite sheets (that use vast amounts of memory) but instead Spine comes with backends for various engines (LibGDX, Unity, and many more). That means you just export a single texture plus information how the texture is triangalized via vertices and a json file that stores the animations (via keyframes for the vertices). Memory-wise, that's a whole different story than using sprite sheets and especially when developing for mobile that's a really big deal.