The animations’ matter turned out differently than I had thought. After I had tried to find the right person to do it and gathered a few initial quotes, I decided to do the animations myself.
Unfortunately, the costs turned out to be quite high, especially when compared to the other elements of the game. All the animations would cost me the same as the complete backgrounds of the game.
I had never made any animation before, it was a fact. Another fact was that the idea seemed rather stupid. On one hand, I wanted everything to be made professionally and, on the other hand, I commission myself, a total layman, to do such an important job as animations. It was more than certain that I would mess the job up. I would have never decided to do it myself, if it had been a 3D or at least a 2.5D game (which would have justified the quotes I had got). But this was a flat 2D game with simple moves of the characters (running was the most complicated motion).
It turned out that there was an animation program, whose simplicity encouraged laymen like me to attempt to make an animation. The program was the Spine by Esoteric. It has many limitations but it’s perfect for the work I had to do. At the same time, it was very easy to use.
However, the program was not all. It would have been also helpful to know some techniques, for instance of running. Here YouTube came to my rescue. You can find there many videos presenting the appropriate running techniques, also in slow motion so that you can watch it very carefully. Another option is a gameplay of a game using similar motions to the ones we want to achieve with our character. It is enough to set the speed to 0.25 (a default function of the standard YouTube player) and you can take a close look at the moves in slow motion and then transfer them to our hero.
Enough with the chit-chat. We’ll see how it goes in practice.