The game I'm working on has a 16-bit inspired art theme. It's consistency is relatively relaxed. (i.e. pixels don't have to line up.)
Since it has a slightly dark theme, I decided to light up only the surrounding area of the player. Though I'm town because I'm not sure which of the three methods are most appealing.
Method 1: Smooth lighting
I.e. a smooth gradient between the player and the surrounding area.
I fear it's smooth nature might feel off compared to the rest of the game's art,
Method 2: Pixelated lighting (without pixel alignment)
I.e. a pixelated gradient that doesn't necessarily have to line up with background tiles.
This is more in tune with the game's art, but it's lack of alignment is noticeable.
yellow lines are tile borders while teal lines are lighting borders
Method 3: Pixelated lighting (with pixel alignment)
Essentially the same as the previous method, except without the lack of alignment. This fits the game's art style well, but almost too well. I mean that in a way that the lighting is almost too pixelated.
Perhaps a combination of these methods is the most psycologically pleasing or maybe something completely differn't will fit the bill.
What are your guys' thoughts? / What have other games done in this situation?