Demon Tech repeater remake final
That's a lot of info to go through but here we go.
The iterative process
Loaded into unity3d, adjusted lights, did direct downscaling - doesn't look good
Lanczos downscaling looked ugly
Area downscaling via python scripting
Adding an triangle depth normal edge detection + downscaling "lineart" pass, this one via lanczos because of lack of color detail, which made it decent
Almost painterly enough
Unwrapped, added green demontech plasma corrosion
Finally added 50% mixed soft posterization
And finally everything together, with new sounds to boot.
Basic pipeline is this - I render at 640x400 in unity with sharpening, SSAO and posterization.
Then i render the plasma puff effect separately but without the alpha channel on a black background. Bring those over to a separate python script which creates alpha out of black channel, while also normalizing the color so it doesn't have colorbanding, resize it down.
Then I render the edges at 1280x800 separately, then bring it over to quite extensive python script which takes the sprite, scales it down, 50% multiplies it with the edges, then overlays it on top of the puff, after which it saves with the correct sprite name.
Sourcecode is included https://gist.github.com/smoketh/814bc095880bc48bc64058d52fb108c8
And that's pretty much it.
A better method of core sprite (not outline) downscale has been also developed by me. I've trained a ESRGAN model specifically on subset of fakefaith 2x upscaled vs nearest neighbor upscaled images.
I strongly recommend using CUpscale with this with NCNN core (it's tad better than cuda):
Pipeline is simple - throw sprites into cupscale and run 1x_doom_stable on it (you'll find setup instructions on github), and while at it - also select option to resize after scaling, pick nearest neighbor and 50%.