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Home » , , , , » Aseprite is an open source program to create animated sprites & pixel: user interface.

Aseprite is an open source program to create animated sprites & pixel: user interface.

Animations and visual effects are nowadays used to enhance nearly every form of multimedia, including video games. These are created by combining multiple images and effects, with an abundance of applications at your disposal.

Aseprite is one of them and offers a different approach on image editing and creating short animations.

Intuitive design makes it easy to use.

If you're nostalgic about the past era of pixel graphics and effects, you might just find this to be a suitable environment.

This is not only because of the application's aim to create such sprites, but the interface is fully designed this way as well. Although you get the impression of an old video game, with icons and tools being a little difficult to identify, accommodation is no problem at all.

Clever file support and drawing tools.

The result is either an enhanced picture or short animation to use in your project, but until you get there some effort needs to be invested.

aseprite logo

You can import a decent amount of image file formats like JPG, PCX, GIF, BMP, FLC, ASE and more. The same can be said about exporting, with additional options to save entire animation strips.

Once you're set up and happy with image selection, you're free to use drawing tools for enhancement. Don't be fooled by the pixel graphics, because the application is capable of powerful results. A toolbar holds all brushes you need to draw lines, various geometrical shapes, spray areas and more. Multiple color palettes are at your disposal, further broadening the number of possibilities.

User Interface.

Here you can learn the basics principles behind Aseprite interface. You should be familiar with the names of the main window elements:

The most important elements are the Sprite Editor, the Timeline, and the Foreground & Background Colors. Everything else is secondary.

You need to have in mind that the Foreground Color is associated with the Left click, and the Background Color with the Right click. So it means that if you've the Pencil tool selected and want to paint something, using the Left click you'll paint with the current Foreground Color, and using the Right click you paint with the Background Color.

Left hand on the keyboard

Our first recommendation is that you should to put your left hand on the keyboard (or your right hand if you are left-handed). The point here is that you should start using shortcuts. There are some handy keyboard shortcuts that you can use from the very beginning:

  • Keys 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 can be used to change the zoom.
  • B key is the Pencil tool, and M the rectangular marquee, maybe the most common tools that you will use.
  • You can pick colors (Eyedropper tool) with Alt + click. E.g. Alt+Left click changes the Foreground Color, Alt+Right click changes the Background Color,
  • The Ctrl key (or on Mac OS X) can be used to select the Move Tool. With it you can easily select or move layers.

Alternative functions for right-click

By default, you paint with the Background Color using the Right click, but you can change this configuration from Edit > Preferences > Editor:

Release Notes:

Aseprite v1.0

Aseprite v1.0.9 February 2 2015

  • Mac OS X:
    • Infinite editor scroll is now available on Mac OS X too
    • Fix mouse movement problems
  • New command line options:
    • --filename-format (issue 519): to specify special filenames used in export operations (--save-as,--sheet, --split-layers, etc.)
    • --trim: trim frames before exporting sprite sheet or texture atlas
  • Issue 587: Shift+X switches layer visibility
  • Issue 585: Add option to disable animation loop when saving GIF files
  • Fix regression bug: now you can move the color popup window again
  • Fix bug flipping a rectangular region in a displaced cel
  • Fix some reported crashes

Older versions.

These are the previous releases of Aseprite available for free:

Aseprite 0.9.5 for Debian (official)

Aseprite 0.9.5 for Ubuntu (Launchpad)

Aseprite 0.9.5 for Ubuntu (PlayDeb)

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