can anyone suggest a good free (or cheap) 2d animation program for flowlab games?

I’m thinking about making my newest game with non-pixel art game assets. i have a drawing tablet (for pc) to use, but i don’t know what kind of animation program would be good for exporting individual frames and animating characters.

if anyone can suggest a good free animation program i could use, i would appreciate it.

update: I’ve been using photoshop for a bit

attack animation:


i also discovered i could bold things


@PixelPizza you’re one of the only people I can think of that doesn’t usually use pixel art, but I think you said you use photoshop. I use photoshop elements sometimes but I’m not sure if that would do the same thing.

I mainly use for most things (free). And then severall additional plugins that allow me to save single frames. Either by layer or by splitting a spritesheet.
Then there are others like Kira and Gimp, but the learning curve can be quite steep.
A nice one specialized for sprite animations is Asesprite, an older version can be downloaded for free.

Once you look around you will see many options. In the end it depends on what you try to achieve and how much effort you want to put in to learn a new program.

F3Art, Asprite.

@R0CK isnt that just for pixel art?

@F3Art lots of us have located into! We have quite a community there. is what I use

I need something not made for pixel art @meburningslime

Got an example @F3Art of what you would like to animate?



original animations

I’d like to animate higher resolution attack and run animations for this guy, (right) as well as drawing environment assets.

i just find drawing much faster than pixel art, even if it’s still with a mouse.

i just drew this rainbow character a while ago and wanted to use him in a game.

hes basically an escaped experiment. Not sure why hes rainbow but hes still kinda scary somehow

Wow, cool idea @F3Art :slight_smile:
But as you noticed yourself, in the end its all ‘pixel’ art.
It’s just the resolution that makes the difference.

Coming back to resolution, so what final size do you imagine for your ‘hero’?

Either way/resolution, still a lot of work ahead :slight_smile:
@“Baron Wasteland” would maybe the best to ask what software might be best

@TinkerSmith In pixels, I had him at 64 x 64 in game. .

So basically as shown on the pixilart examples?
I try to understand, so you would like to draw in high res, as in the image you showed above. And then you want to reduce it back down to 64x64?

If I take your highres example and shrink it down to 64x64 I get this (ok, done quick&dirty)
It would require a lot of cleanup work @F3Art … frame by frame …

Yes, I think it would be easier to animate if drawn in hi res beforehand, then shrunken down. You cant really tell when playing the game from my experience of just using still pictures as assets.

You were using Photoshop Elements, right @F3Art ?
One option there would be to animate on layers. You can modify the transparenct of single layers to temporary simulate ‘onion skinning’ = being able to see the layer underneath as a reference.
Then the whole thing can be saved as a GIF file, someone explains it here:
Create animated GIFs in Photoshop Elements
I don’t use Photoshop, not sure if Elements has an option to save the layers as single frames. But I noticed the the GIF export already has a resize option, that would suit you.

Ok, now you’re stuck with a GIF, something that Flowlab doesn’t support (yet). You would have to split it. Lucky enough (asking Dr.Google) there are plenty online tools available that can do that for you.

OR you use a sprite editor that has GIF import. Would also allow you to fix little things. Here an easy to use free one: GraphicsGale

In the end it always boils down to personal preference. Ask 10 people, get 20 answers, LOL

Hope the info helps a little bit

No, I actually used ms paint for that one, Drew it with a mouse since I wasnt using my usual pc.

I do have photoshop elements on my usual pc though, and thats what I usually use to draw digital, so I should be able to try that soon


here is the heavily pixelated version of a medikit i drew in photoshop(I’m pretty rusty)

I can’t figure out how to merge layers.

you can barely tell it’s pixel art right?

update: figured out how to merge layers but made one animation frame way too big and wierd. I probably shouldn’t have started making the character animations before I knew how to, you know, animate well in photoshop.

practice makes perfect though right?

Yeah, it doesn’t look like it is pixel art.

@GalaxianGames yah and it’s only 32 x 32 pixels.

dang photoshop is kinda hard to animate in.

fun to draw in though. I think I’m getting better.

would anyone know how to get rid of the white background when exporting?