Getting Started with Layer

How to get started with the Layer platform and create professional game assets.

Updated over a week ago

Welcome to Layer. This short guide will run you through the basics of the Layer platform and help you create your first piece of professional game art.

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1.0 - Creating an account on Layer

Making an account on Layer is easy and free for all users. Just click “Sign Up” in the top right to get started. We recommend creating an account using your existing Google Gmail account.

Once accepted, you will now be inside the Layer workspace and asked to forge your first image.

Follow the instructions, or feel free to skip right into advanced usage.

2.0 - Forging your first asset

Forging your first asset is easy, and our platform takes you through the initial steps. To start the process, follow the instructions and select from our list of official styles. These styles are officially supported by Layer and are designed to help you create professional assets for a variety of different game types and scenarios.

Once you’ve chosen a style, it’s time to create your first prompt. This “prompt” or description is how to tell the AI generation model exactly what you want. The more descriptive the better, as it helps the AI narrow down the type of image from millions of inputs.

2.1 - How to create an effective prompt

Creating a great prompt is the key to generating the best assets, but it takes practice. You can check out our full guide on prompt generation, but in the meantime here are some simple tips:

  • Imagine if you were verbally describing your image to someone, and start writing your prompt in that format.

  • Be as descriptive as possible, and refine from there. If your prompt is too high level you will get a lot of variance in generation.

  • Separate out your prompts into sections based on elements of your image like background, color, pose, tone, expression, and more.

You can also leverage AI to help you refine your prompt - pretty meta right? This can be a great way to add more specificity to what you’re trying to generate. However, we always advise you look over and edit the AI generated prompt as well to ensure it’s exactly what you need.

2.2 - Selecting the right style

Layer comes fully equipped with a portfolio of styles to choose from. These range from 8-bit pixel art to hi-def realistic artwork - and everything in between. Simple click the style in the bottom left of the prompt box at any time to select from a list with visual examples.

Layer also supports the creation of your own unique style. With this feature you can upload your own artwork and train a custom model, allowing you to create iterations of art you already have. This is especially helpful when scaling game assets created by artists inside your studio.

This feature is available for Layer Pro, Studio, and Enterprise accounts.

Once you’re happy with your forged image, it’s time to head to the Canvas to edit and export your asset. Simply click “Edit and Refine” on the right side of the screen to switch to the Canvas view.

3.0 - Editing images using the Canvas

The Layer Canvas is a powerful tool for creating specific variations of generated assets, and editing them in real-time. This allows you to fine tune your assets to match your game art before exporting as a PSD.

3.1 - Creating variations & editing

Editing assets is easy with the Canvas. Once you have your image, select from the options at the bottom of the screen to get started. For more info, check out our full guide for editing assets in the Canvas.

  • Object Selection: This tool automatically selects parts of your image, great for selecting complex areas such as facial features.

  • Marquee: Select a rectangle shape inside your image, good for grabbing a larger area such as a body part or background section.

  • Lasso: Select an area freehand, great for when you need to grab a specific area of the larger image such as an item in the background or object held by a character.

Each of these provides a different method of selecting parts of your image, with pros and cons.

In this example the Lasso tool was used to select the knife held by our cat chef. 😺🔪

You can now add prompt direction for this specific part of the image. This is extremely useful for editing parts of your image without changing the overall asset.

3.2 - Cropping & expanding images

Cropping your image is easy and straightforward. Cropping allows you to quickly slice away unwanted portions of your image, and expanding uses AI to expand on what you already have. For a more detailed guide on cropping and expanding click here.

Crop: Simply select the “Crop” option in the right hand side of the toolbar, then select the part of your image you want to crop.

Expanding: Using the same tool, drag to expand an area outside of your existing image. Then, click “Refill” to generate a whole new area - expanding your image.

3.3 - Exporting game assets as a PSD

Now that you’ve edited and expanded your image, you’re ready to export the final asset for use in your game. Click “Export” in the top right corner and select the best option. Remember, if you want access to all the layers in a program like Adobe Photoshop you will need to select “PSD”.

4.0 - Managing your projects inside Layer

4.1 Sessions

Once you start forging, it can be hard to stop - and it’s easy to end up with 1000s of assets. You can easily manage everything under Sessions, which gives you access to your generations in chronological order.

4.2 Layer Library

Once you start creating a lot of game assets such as characters, UI elements, and backgrounds - it’s important to know how to effectively manage your WIP assets and exports as well as the important files.

Layer makes it easy with a Library where you can access and organize all your projects. This serves as a central place for accessing your imports, exports, styles, and WIP assets.

To continue from where you left off, you can simply double click on the asset which will take you into the Editable Canvas view. There you can see a history of the image and edits made during your previous session.

5.0 - Exploring Layer’s subscription plans

By now you should be familiar with Layers basics and successfully forging assets for your game. If you’re looking for more powerful features such as faster forging or organization management - we’ve got you covered.

Free

Free

Pro Plan

$30 /seat/mo

Studio Plan

$149 /seat/mo

Enterprise Plan

Contact Us

Explore Layer’s core asset creation and editing capabilities choosing from 40+ art styles

  • 600 generations per month

  • Starter styles (by Layer)

  • Community styles (open source)

  • 1 GB storage

  • Normal generation speed

  • Community support

Teach AI your unique art style and create consistent game assets for your solo project

  • 6,000 generations per month

  • Teach AI your unique styles

  • Create up to 5 art styles

  • 50 GB storage

  • Faster generation

  • API access

Create a team workspace and collaborate with your team across one or more projects

  • Unlimited generations

  • 50% faster training speeds

  • Create 50 styles + 10 /seat

  • Concurrent style training

  • 1 TB + 500GB storage /seat

  • Fastest generation

  • Shared workspace

  • Shareable assets

  • Projects (max 1)*

  • Asset history (10 revisions)*

  • Live collaboration*

Partner with the Layer team to optimize your artists' workflows

  • Access to various foundational model options, including copyright compliant ones

  • Priority Infrastructure

  • Create 100 styles + 20 /seat

  • 10 styles concurrent training

  • 5 TB + 1 TB storage /seat

  • 100+ styles trained /month

  • 10 projects*

  • Dedicated account Support

  • File password protection*

  • SOCII Type I & 2 compliance

  • ISO27001* & ISO42001*

  • User roles & permissions

  • SSO sign in

  • User management via SCIM

  • Workspace notifications

  • Audit logs

  • Webhooks*

6.0 - FAQ

How many images can I forge with a Free account?

600 per month.

How many styles do I have access to?

40+ styles which includes Starter Styles trained by Layer team as well as the open source styles. If you like to Layer to create in your style, you can do so with Layer PRO and above plans.

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