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Japanator review: Tokyopop Manga Creator

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So, you want to be a great manga artist? Tokyopop put out their Tokyopop Manga Creator to help out people who want to be the next great manga artist. The software is a collection of tools meant to help out manga artists.

So, I went ahead and gave the software a little spin, with what little graphical ability I have. Let's see how it turned out!

Hopping into this, I was expecting this software package to give artists the tools to work with their comics digitally, and in essence, provide them with a Photoshop or Illustrator-type set of options to work with. What I mean is, I was looking for graphical editing and inking tools to clean up images that have been scanned in. Unfortunately, that isn't the focus of this program.

What it does provide, though, is a way to take the frames and images you've done already and piece them together. Manga Creator gives you the option for a multitude of layouts, from three or four panel strips to six panel comic or manga style pages. From there, you can add speech bubbles and text. The software also features some publishing tools, allowing you to export in most every relevant format. They also give you the ability to upload to HyperComics' website.

I'll admit that my expectations for this package was way too high -- the item is priced at $30. The software is full of usefulness, though. It'll auto-grab images from some of your folders, giving you quick access to your drawings.

Moving around panels and speech bubbles doesn't turn out too well, though. While the program gives you some variety, it doesn't give you more free-form options, like having a back and forth conversation in speech bubbles. So, you'll be limited to what you can fit into the transformed speech bubbles. It'd be nice if more features were added, but this seems to be about it for the limitations.

Tokyopop includes some of it's own artwork if you would like to use it your own pieces. The problem is, they're complete images, and you would have to base everything around that one style. While it's a nice gesture, the images aren't really all that useful.

While this program is a nice try by Tokyopop, it isn't something that you should pick up if you're intending to be serious with your manga. Oftentimes, you'll be better off grabbing a copy of Photoshop, Illustrator, or Paint Shop Pro, and using those pieces. You'll have more options to use for editing and cleaning up your images, and most of the work done by a manga artist is hand-drawn, including inking and lettering. So, you might as well work on those skills, and work towards being a great artist.

Score: 5.5
Verdict: Try it!


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reviewed by Brad Rice

 

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Brad Rice
Brad RiceFounder   gamer profile

Brad helped found in 2006, and currently serves as an Associate He's covered all aspects of the industry, but has a particular preference for the business-end of things, more + disclosures


 



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