8-Bit Color Mode

Hello! I’m developing a game for Game Boy Color and wondered if there’s a way to set Aseprite to 8-bit color mode?

Typically you get 256 colors for each RGB value, but in 8-bit you only get 32 (0-31). It would save me a lot of time if I were able to pick only from colors I’m able to use instead of having to find closely matching colors later.

hi! sure, when creating a sprite select “indexed” option. you can also later convert a sprite to indexed mode. load a desired colour palette, then go to menu sprite -> color mode -> indexed or more options if you want to aplly dithering.
there’s a game boy color type 1 palette preinstalled iirc, you can create your own or download one, for example here’s a set of 145 palettes for gbc: Game Boy Bootstrap Palettes for Aseprite by WildLeoKnight

Or, if you want to create your own palette and lock it to 8bit color, look at my script, FastBit color picker.

It’s a color picker that can be locked to any bit depth. Just download it, unzip it, and put it into your scripts folder. Make sure you restart Aseprite or it won’t appear is Aseprite’s scripts menu.

Awesome, thanks guys! :slight_smile:

Just for posterity’s sake, a little info about Game Boy Color hardware and software limitations.

Game Boy Color uses a 15bit hardware color palette with 5 bits per channel for a total 32,768 colors. Usual software palette limitations were 32 colors for backgrounds, and 8 palettes of 3 colors plus transparent for sprites. This meant the GBC could normally handle roughly 56 colors on screen at once.

If you relax those constraints, you’ll be drifting into Genesis/SNES/TurboGrafX territory. Lol.

Anyway, look forward to seeing what you come up with.

BTW, how does one develop for systems like the GBC? I’ve always been a bit curious! Haha.


@WolftrooperNo86 You can actually interrupt the Game Boy Color’s display to display a lot more colors than 56 at once, but you’re right in that’s what games generally used. But you’re limited to 5 bits per color channel no matter what.

I’m making my sprites and background tiles in Aseprite and then converting them using Game Boy Tile Designer and Map Builder. You can code games in pure Assembly, but there’s also a Game Boy Development Kit (GBDK) which allows you to code in C. And more recently a guy named Chris Maltby released a drag and drop interface for making simple top-down Game Boy games called GB Studio. Lots of options these days! :slight_smile:

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@WolftrooperNo86 I guess I didn’t realize there was an update to Aseprite, just updated and now it’s working perfectly. Thanks again! May have to add you to the credits in my game. :slight_smile:

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@esotericsean That would be awesome. I’m really looking forward to seeing what you’re making.