Introducing 'JSpriteSheetCreator'

One of the first things you will need when developing a 2D game will be a sprite class. This sprite class will eventually need to handle animations. So what do you do? As any prototyping tool you develop, you go look for free graphic resources. Unfortunately, most animated sprites are in a gif format. So now you need something that will convert that into a single sprite sheet. Here is where JSpriteSheetCreator comes.

Either my google-fu isn't what it used to or a demand for such an utility isn't what I had imagined. I'm talking about a small application that will take an animated gif file and turn it into a single sprite sheet. Let me rephrase that to make it a little more clear: JSpriteSheetCreator will convert a file FROM an animated gif TO a single png sprite sheet.

Yeah... I repeat that because searching for "convert gif to single sprite sheet" or "from gif "to sprite sheet"" or "sprite sheet converter" or "<other search you think will work>" and any other combination of words I looked for didn't work. Google kept returning from sprite sheet to gif. Which is kind of weird because, as I see it, in games, you have better control of the animation with a sprite sheet than a gif. On the other hand, making an animated gif is probably useful for many other reasons.

Anyway, the only application that I finally found was Avi4Bmp. Which does the basic job of converting from an animated gif to a png and vise versa pretty good. But I have more ideas for such a tool.

Initially, JSpriteSheetCreator will do just that. But in my next iteration I will add support for reordering the frames and of course import/export xml animation data (WARNING: as of this time, google will tell you that ziggyware is an attack site. They are probably hacked so make sure you know what you are doing i.e. use AdBlock and/or NoScript) that will help integrate this into a game developers workflow.

As any other utility I develop, I am hosting this in my own server. You can find it under my Java Corner. You can even run it without downloading it with Web Start (provided you trust me). You can also find the source code.

Of course, I would like to thank Kevin Weiner for his ultra slim GifDecoder class.