Making art sure does require a lot of patience. This was the first time I was working on pixel art, and had to go iterate many times to get the right feel and look to the environment.
The theme for the environment was Volcano. So, based on that I started pulling some reference art on how the environment should look, what needs to go in there along with what colors to use to get the feel of the volcanos around.
So, I started working on Trees:
Then made some volcanoes using Unity primitive objects and placed these trees in the scene, to get this look:
Sure, did the sky dint look that good, and the colors were not getting along with each other to get that volcano feel. So, I tried changing the sky colors to get the following results:
But things did not look that great. Then finally, after looking over different references, I finally came up with this sky color and background color.
So, the skycolor and the background worked well with the theme. But the trees were not looking great. But I went ahead and started adding some particle effects, fallen/burnt trees to give a effect in the background.
1. Started with some lightning effect.
2. Added Burnt Trees
3. Made changes to the trees to fit the environment:
4. Added some fire and smoke particles:
5. Worked on getting the mountains right : These flat mountains which did not go well with environment.
I thought of giving them some depth to it. so the mountains look at further apart and fit in the scene. But, didnt have to use high poly model to do this. I used exsiting cuboids to create the effect that I wanted the mountains to have. Add the lava effect which did not go well at first.
I changed the texutre animating to particle effects in Unity3D which gave me better results.