Hi, in this tutorial I'm gonna show you how to follow the GTA games art style for weapon icons, it's pretty easy, all you gotta do is a 3D render of your weapon, edit it (or draw over it) to make it fit the style and apply to a border, so let's start.
Grand Theft Auto III
Like any other weapon icon creation process, first you gotta understand the style, use this site as a reference to look at them:
Some icons are a bit different from the main style, but overall, they're like a horror comics art style, half dark, half bright.
This is the border we're gonna use for the GTA III icons.
Render your weapon with textures in 3ds max/blender/whatever you use.
Remember to use the textures and to rotate the camera in an simmilar angle to gta icons.
I also reccomend rendering in high resolution for a better edit in photoshop.
Time to edit the render, apply a threshold effect (The black and white one) then paint it with the color #ffaa00 , you can do that using the hue/saturation layer, check the box, apply saturation 100, lighting about -45 and export it as png.
Then all you got to do is bring the border and the weapon together.
Grand Theft Auto Vice City
Use this as reference:
10th Anniversary border (Follow GTA III Style)
GTA Vice City uses gradient, shadows, and different borders for each weapon category.
Render your weapon without a texture, just the gray model, in a nice angle, go to photoshop, and add a gradient to the layer with a pink like #ed7dec and #00ffea with an 90° angle, scale of 55, opacity of 80, but it all can change sometimes.
Then you have to make the drop shadow, opacity of 100%, 90° angle, etc, it all depends on resolution, keep on mind you need to do a solid shadow, and you'll be fine.
Choose the proper border and build the icon.
Grand Theft Auto San Andreas
Gta San andreas has a hand drawn style, it's easy to do and it's style is the same used for the stories games.
That's the border:
Just render your weapon, select the color overlay, use #e8e8e8 for your white (san andreas has a greyish white), apply stroke (be careful about the thickness of it), then import the render once again, set a medium opacity so you can use it as a reference to draw details over the base, create a new layer and start drawing with the pencil tool the details you want the weapon to have, don't put too much details, follow the style.
Here's the result:
Grand Theft Auto Liberty City Stories and GTA Vice City Stories
Both games use the same border and style, the drawing style is the same as GTA SA
Here's the border: