Posted Tue Feb 27, 2018 8:38 AM
Thanks for clearing this up, Spry. Just from looking at the sprites I knew that things went as you described: some edits due to different kernel constraints (I had planned for a 9-pixel wide player, full vertical resolution for objects/enemies, and mixed sizes for bosses, while the kernel you used always draws 8-pixel sprites at half vertical resolution and a single size), combined with tweaks based on personal preferences.
Using references is good, yes, I do it all the time, but the final result is still strikingly similar to the source material. The sprites were originally made to see how faithful an Atari 2600 game could be to the original Sonic gameplay, and, as a group effort, we were trying a few different things here. When I first noticed you were developing Zippy (before it was called Zippy, IIRC), I figured you were in doing it in the same spirit as the rest of the guys here, just experimenting with other ways to make Sonic happen, so I didn't mind seeing my art adapted. I never expected you to release a commercial product, specially not after what happened with Princess Rescue.
I don't think there's much we can do about it now. I am very upset for seeing minor edits of my art (I don't buy the "this is the 2600, there are only so many ways to draw a character" argument that was thrown around, these are minor edits and real artists now it) being used in a commercial project. This was never the purpose of these sprites.
Please don't do this in the future. Just because some art was posted online, that doesn't mean it's free for the taking. When using someone else's art, even if you tweak it to your needs, which is common on retro platforms, it's common courtesy to contact the original author and to respect his wishes (credit, monetary compensation, or even refusal). I turned down everyone who asked me to use this art in personal projects, since this was my personal project at first, and then a community effort here at AA.