More Colors please!

Hello, I am in need of more colors on Makecode Arcade, I dont know what to do without the colors that my friend have made all the good pixel art with. Please make it infinite colors ASAP! Thats the only thing we want. Also please make it so we also can import pixel art to tilemaps, backgrounds and sprites, instead of using code to do it. Thanks!


i TOTALLY agree the colors are SO lame


I believe that it’s soft/hardware limitations and the team has commented on this and stated that they prolly won’t add something of this nature.


You can always get the color fading extension, but this still only allows for max 15 colors (but any colors you want). There is a way to (kind of) get a 16th color, but it’s not ideal. 8-bit devices do not support unlimited colors, so getting more is currently impossible (as far as I know).


I agree, they could add more colors to the color pallete


The 16 colors are an intentional limitation to increase performance (16 is not a lot of colors but that makes it’s faster) and it makes it “less complicated” to design art. Designing art in say, Scratch is “considerably harder” because there is more flexibility. Scratch can use much more colors because Scratch projects are designed to run on a computer in the browser, while Arcade is designed to run on “cheap” microcontrollers that measure RAM in kilobytes and clock speeds in mega-hertz!

It’s 32*, not 8 :stuck_out_tongue: Plus, no display or computer could support an infinite amount of colors cause that would need an infinite amount of RAM and speed to communicate to the display what exact color to display. :laughing: But 16,581,375 (typical maximum color count, which is ) is considerably more then 16.

There are several tools listed that will convert “standard images” (like .png) into “Arcade images”. (I love self-promotion!)

* The STM32F401 (Meowbit’s microcontroller) and ATSAMD51J19 (PyGamer, PyBadge) are both 32-bit microcontrollers


me too


Thank you so much for the detailed information here! I appreciate it. I think I’ll just try to live with the colors that are in the game now. There is always the color fading extension option too though, but I dont think I’ll use it in a long time. Thanks!

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@UnsignedArduino I just assumed that makecode was 8-bit because it supported only 16 colors, but it’s nice to know that it’s 32-bit.

dang dude don’t be judgy just be patient and they might add new colors

If I’m really being honest, the only reason why Arcade doesn’t have many colours is because and only because of performance. Since the Arcade (and every other MakeCode) editor is designed to run in a browser, the performance of the platform is severely hindered - mainly because of the fact that you are practically running an app in an app. To give even a slim chance of infinite colours being available, Arcade would have to become an application that you can download on your computer and use (like Scratch), since there would be a performance and memory boost.

I think it’s the opposite. Makecode could certainly handle the multiple colors, it already does with the color extension. I think they keep at 16 to make development and sharing easier. It’s an artificial limitation, like fantasy consoles (pico-8 etc) use. Also you CAN download makecode and work on it offline, AND scratch is also a web service like makecode.

16 colors is enough for me. It would be nice if the color extension allowed you to choose the 16 colors in the palette and show them in the editor.


i agree the we need a couple new colors or a way to make custom colors (without the color extension) it would make it a little easier to do some art but at the same time we’ve used the same colors for a while and the final art is still awesome so I’m 50/50 on this one

@drtongue96 I see your point but MakeCode Arcade downloaded and used offline isn’t any different to the web version, it’s just an application instead of a website. Also referring to Scratch being a web service as well as Arcade, you can’t really do much in Scratch without an account, and accounts aren’t really in Arcade yet (I know you can cloud save your code to an email account but that doesn’t really affect anything apart from ease of accessing files. Scratch is fully dependant on you having to save files to your computer as .sb3 files, meaning that Scratch can use your computer’s full power, unlike Arcade, which runs on a web browser.

In my opinion, I think that Arcade should introduce the option to make colours based on an RGB number, but the only issue would be that hardware would not possibly be able to run anything past 8, 8, 8 on the RGB scale :frowning:

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MakeCode Arcade on the desktop will also save your projects, just as a directory of files instead of a .sb3 project in Scratch. (in your Documents folder on Windows - I don’t know about macOS)

MakeCode Arcade on desktop (and I’m willing to bet good money that Scratch on desktop also) is actually just an electron app (electron is basically a contained browser that can only show one page) so they would have approximately the same performance no matter where.


I mean, personally for me, I would like 20 colors instead of just 15. Preferably Gray, Navy, Cerulean, Crimson, and Coral.

@E-EnerG-Gamecentral Yeah, or maybe even 25 colors (like the NES), although, as to my knowledge, the only way to have 25 colors at once on NES is to have 12 colors on sprites and 12 on tiles (1 for background), and each tile (or sprite) can only display 3 colors per tile. It would be cool though, for makecode to have more colors, without NES limitations.

They should add nes color palette.