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Draw All Your Own Game Art with Adobe Flash

Learn how to illustrate the most common graphics for top down games: logos, maps, level, characters, GUI, and more.
4.5 (65 ratings)
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1,269 students enrolled
Created by Justin Dike
Last updated 6/2014
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  • 13 hours on-demand video
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
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This course will teach you how to draw your own game art with Adobe Flash. You'll learn how to make logos, maps, characters, various top-down perspective boards (like land, seas, forests, etc), building, buttons and other GUI, upgrade menus, icons, and animated FX.

The estimated time length for this entire series will be 10-15 hours of videos. When a new section is added, an announcement will be made to any enrolled student.

This series is taught by Justin Dike, owner, instructor and lead developer at , a site specializing in video tutorials since 2004.

Who is the target audience?
  • Anyone who wants to learn to draw with Adobe Flash (or other vector programs)
  • Non-illustrators who wants to make the graphics for their own games.
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What Will I Learn?
The goal of this course is to turn ANYONE into a graphic artist for any type of game.
View Curriculum
  • Adobe Flash (or any suitable vector program like Adobe Illustrator)
Curriculum For This Course
Expand All 45 Lectures Collapse All 45 Lectures 13:00:32
The All-Important Logo
5 Lectures 01:26:18

In this video, we will look at the basic layout of your logo. Topics include the area your logo will ideally occupy, issues you might run into if your logo exceeds a certain width, emphasizing certain words over others, and other subtleties you might not think of otherwise.

Preview 12:15

We will begin to create a fully-realized logo for a hypothetical game called "Empire of Areas". In this video, we will get as far as adjusting the text to perfection, then adding a backing layer behind the main text to make it appear extruded.

Preview 18:14

In this video, we will color the text and add small, but noticeable details. We will explore the gradient options in Flash and discuss some benefits of using Symbols for repetitive objects or patterns.

Adding Color and Detail

In this video, we will create a backing for the main text of the logo. The background will include a castle-inspired shape, draped flag, and sword.

Adding a Backing for the Text

To complete our logo, we will light it using Blend Effects and a filtered flame symbol. We'll also look at how well our logo holds up against different backgrounds and sizes.

Lighting the Logo
Ye ol' Quest Map
5 Lectures 01:45:55

Yar. It's time to start ye Ol' Quest Map. This could be used as a guide to give players an overview of the various levels they will travel to. Or you could simply create a map for decoration in conjunction with your logo. Maps always look cool!

ALL the source files for this section, are available in the Supplementary Material tab.

The Map Base and Lakes

In this video, we'll connect our lakes with rivers, add dock icons, and overlay text on the map. Check out for some great free and paid fonts to use. We suggest Ale and Wenches.

Streams, Docks and Text

In this video, we'll add mountains and roads. What quest map is complete without some kind of ill-fated mountain pass.

Adding Mountains and Roads

In this video, we'll draw a forest and add cliffs to the map.

Adding Forests and Cliffs

And finally, to finish off our map, we'll add a quaint little village and North, South, East, West icon.

Adding Villages
User Interface and Buttons
8 Lectures 02:08:27

The introduction to this session of tutorials talks about some "what not to do's", with an emphasis on young players (those who can't read), and games that offer TOO many up-front options.

You can download the supplemental materials for this section here.


In this video, we'll begin to create 2 possible Play buttons, and aside from creating the art from scratch, we'll talk about establishing a theme for your game's general user interface.

Establishing a Theme with a Play Button

In this tutorial, we'll convert our first Play button from a medieval theme to a Sci-Fi or military style theme.

Play Button Sci-Fi Style

In this lesson, we will make a Progress Bar which could be used to indicate the player's health has been drained, or some type of weaponry is being used up.

Interface Elements - Health / Progress Bar

In this video, we will create a glassy radar or compass (and we will add some chains to the Play button).

Compass / Radar

In this tutorial, we'll look at creating a "selection" box to indicate which of multiple options is the chosen one.

Currently-Selected Icons

In this video, we will work on a smoother, Wall-E style button for a more realistic interface.

Smoother, Realistic Buttons

In this video, we will work on a smoother, Wall-E style button for a more realistic gaming interface.

Overview of a Finished GUI
5 Lectures 01:30:49

In this video we will start looking at character design, beginning with a front view character. The finished piece could be used in a Choose Your Character scene before the game starts.

The project files for this section are in the Supplemental Materials tab

Front View Character (possibly for a Choose a Character screen)

In this video, we will finish the knight character which we started in the previous video. We will draw his chest armor, cape, arms, hand and sword hilt.

Front View Character (continued)

In this video, we will draw the front view of the in-game character.

In-Game Character Front View

In this video, we will draw the back view of the in-game character.

In-Game Character Back View

In this video, we will draw the side view of the in-game character.

In-Game Character Side View
Character Animations
5 Lectures 01:33:13

In this tutorial, we will animate the in-game characters front view walk cycle.

Front View Walk Cycle

Side View Walk Cycle

In this tutorial, we will discuss exporting your Flash file to a spritesheet or PNG sequence to be imported to the software development kit of your choice (iOS, Android, etc)

Exporting a PNG sequence or SpriteSheet from Flash

In this video we will create an animated attack sequence.

Attack Animation

Attack Animation FX
Top Down Levels
6 Lectures 02:04:32

In this tutorial we will create an ominous looking rocky, terrain.

The source files for this section are in the Supplemental Materials Tab.

The Outlands Terrain

In this video we will add to our previous terrain, with broken logs, vines, grass and a patch of vines.

The Outlands Continued

In this tutorial we will create our ocean scape, including islands and a luminous textured ocean.

The Ocean

In this video, we will add rocks, grass, a bridge and dock.

The Ocean Continued

The Bad Part of Town (or Anywhere)

The Bad Part of Town (or Anywhere) Continued
5 Lectures 01:39:18

Recorded after the next two videos, I decided we should talk a bit about perspective first in this video.

Perspective Points

The Castle


Sketching with Vectors / Attaching Odd Shapes

In this tutorial, we will create a jungle house. The materials of the house should give off a more organic vibe.

The Tiki House
Animated FX
3 Lectures 30:11
Star Burst

Create a similar effect as the star burst but with a more explosive ring in the background.

Ring Blast

Smoke Loop
About the Instructor
4.3 Average rating
531 Reviews
39,477 Students
24 Courses
CartoonSmart / Owner / Leader Developer and Instructor

Justin Dike is the founder of CartoonSmart one of the internet's first video training websites. He is a long-time illustrator and animator, focusing mostly on Adobe Flash, and experienced programmer with Swift, Sprite Kit, Actionscript 3, Objective C and Cocos2d. For CartoonSmart he has recorded hundreds of hours of video tutorials and recently published his first full length book titled iOS Programming with Xcode and Cocos2d available in the iBookstore. Justin has also developed many iOS games, including a side scrolling game engine.

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