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Art guy, animator, and budding pixel artist for the Indie Gameboy-Style game "Blackmask."

29, Male

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Joined on 12/20/19

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Mastafran's News

Posted by Mastafran - March 3rd, 2021


Updates have certainly slowed, but honestly, not much news I can report besides livestreaming, my birthday and continuing to work hard on Blackmask.



I've been working on concept environments for Blackmask. They won't be in color in the game, but it helps to have a sense of art direction. Since my time is crunched, I've ended up coloring art I draw in my SketchWallet and not getting insane about detailing them.


You can read about it more on my website.


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Posted by Mastafran - February 8th, 2021


With the fruits of Adam's labor reveals a new progress video for Blackmask!


This progress video done between the last video and now, includes new additions of Slopes, Dashing, NPCs, and Enemies. There's some jank of course, but development still persists!


Between this and my other art tasks, I'm working on some Dog and Cat NPCs that are Cole's size, unlike the Deer NPCs who're twice his size. With these lil' guys, I'm figuring out a system where I can make quick variants of the characters to swap out heads and bodies. I'm sure this will be my system in refining my npc or enemy sprites.


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You can read more of my game progress on my website!


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Posted by Mastafran - January 5th, 2021


I had plans, but they went to crap last year. With all the virus stuff, so many cancellations and changes in my life I didn't get my goals done. The two freelance projects I had taken up most of my time for the year, but they kept me alive and maintained over 2020.

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I want 2021 will be the year My programmer and I go full throttle on Blackmask! I want to have more update videos for the game on the development YouTube channel and Twitter.


There's little done, but we're still a bit far and away. Our goal for this year is to start a Kickstarter eventually, so stick around for news on that!

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You can read more about this on my personal website.


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Posted by Mastafran - November 8th, 2020


Development for Blackmask is going to slow down as Adam and I are dealing with new dayjob stuff. I'll still be doing Twitch livestreams to work on art assets and concept art for gameplay ideas and Adam will still be plugging away at the game in his spare time away from his contract work.

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We're hoping to try and have a small playable demo around PAX East or so but if not we won't rush it. If you want to keep up with new updates, we set up a Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube specifically for Blackmask and that's where I'll do the more development focused updates to separate it from my personal art accounts.


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Posted by Mastafran - October 24th, 2020


My Programmer's at the point in his programming stuff where I don't need to hand him any new assets to make a demo for. He recently got a new job to pay the bills so progress will slow down on Blackmask slightly.



My own art priorities have moved to more design things, so I've been doodling logo and user interface ideas. I'm not as confident in my logo and lettering as I want but I have a passing knowledge of logo design thanks to Blambot explaining what goes into good logo design.


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Of the sketches, I think I'm going with 4 or 5, preferring 5 the most out of them all for the more adventure fantasy theming I'm going for. From showing it around, people seem to be the most drawn to the last two sketches since they're the clearest to read, though, I'm personally not a fan of the "Schoolhouse Rock" look of the last sketch.


Soon, we're setting up our Blackmask stuff to have its own social accounts to post news related to the game on. Now if you want more Blackmask news, you can follow on Twitter and Instagram and soon an actual website!


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Posted by Mastafran - October 14th, 2020


The game is progressing alright. I just finished up working on a tumbling animation for the Blackmask Game on my art stream!


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My programmer is currently in the process of putting all the art assets and dialogue stuff together into a playable demo! He's reworked the controls and physics to more effective. Adam's hoping to have something to show off at PAX if they're having it this year or next year!


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Meanwhile, I've been experimenting with Aseprite for the first time to many people's suggestion. It might take getting used to from my setup in Clip Studio Paint, but it seems to have some good tools.


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The new vertical sword attacks are my first attempts to work in some stuff into my Blackmask workflow. I really want to work in Aseprite's layer's system to make better tail and other secondary animations. The Game Boy obviously can't do so many sprite frames but I gave up trying to stay 100% accurate to the console a long time ago.


You can read more about what I've been up to on my website.


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Posted by Mastafran - October 4th, 2020


My entire collection of Pastry Cat Stickers are on sale on my Etsy store right now! All of my Pastry Cat series is now purchasable!


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Wheatley even has a full body without losing his holographic look! The bread cat stickers specifically are holographic, so they're especially good!


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Posted by Mastafran - September 27th, 2020


Staying busy with my art stuff for the last few weeks. I'm doing what I can to pack my days with activity and take my mind of things. I feel good when I'm focused on a project that I care about.


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I'm giving my programmer assets to work with to test game ideas like this non-player character deer girl. I like designing heroes, but I especially like designing non-heroes. It's a challenge to make them simpler to draw so you can redraw them over and over again.


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I do what I can to have a good amount of height differences in my characters for the game's universe. I can't make them so big they can't fit on the screen or so small you can't see them, but I make sure to build all the sprites with the Gameboy screen in mind. It's nice to be accurate to my original sketches.


You can read more about them on my website and follow me on Twitch on Wednesday nights for new pixel progress!


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Posted by Mastafran - September 15th, 2020



This is a progress video of our game tentatively called “Cole Blackmask and the Scrolls of Soleon” a Game Boy styled action-platformer about a raccoon merchant adventuring an outlandish animal world for ancient magic scrolls of cataclysmic power.


This is footage of our super early builds, there's still so much to do before we have enough for a playable demo. Stick around and we'll keep you posted.


Art and Animation by Ryan Francis

Programming by Adam Mortell

Catch me streaming pixel art progress every Wednesday on my Twitch channel!


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Posted by Mastafran - August 24th, 2020


I've been okay with my art. Been slowly attempting to move away from my Twitter and Instagram, to try to keep my sanity with actual galleries sites. I still stream my art as frequently as I can on my Twitch Channel so follow me to catch me working on commissions!


The game I'm working on with my friend is moving along. We managed to get in a few new things like alternate weapons and running, basic collisions and currently he's working on some basic menus and inventory screens.




I've been working on new art assets like running, better attack animations, wall jumping, as well as some basic ideas for enemies and a boss character.


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I'd like to push this stuff along a little faster, but I'm still busy with big commissions like this illustration for the Steam Early Access Game, Furs of Fury, a Warcraft 3 Inspired, Multiplayer Strategy Game (not a MOBA.)


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I'm miffed by my lack of speed in getting more of my art things done in comparison to many of my peers and friends. I keep thinking that my work isn't up to par but, I have to be more patient with myself and tack it one drawing at a time and not give up.


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