I am hardly a good example of a fantastic spriter; however, I personally use MS Paint and I would kindly ask you to refrain from such rash statements. It offends any and all who actively use that program to pixel and refine their artistic skill, and manage to pull off wonderful works of art. Thanks!
I believe one of my friends uses MS Paint for her works:https://crackerss.deviantart.com/
And you can check out my own links in my signature for some decent pixel works from myself.
Also, there's a neat page
about some MS Paint tricks no one really takes notice of. (I find the color replacement trick very handy while pixelling.)
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In any case, I don't want to derail this thread. Really, it comes down to knowing how to draw
pixel art that makes tiles or sprites look great. Why your tilesets and sprites are not as defined/clean is probably because you may not know pixel art that well yet. The program doesn't matter
as long as you're comfortable with it/know how its tools work and such. Probably most important is that making good pixel art takes time
. It's a skill, and like all skills, it takes practice to get good at it. You're probably not going to make great works at first. That's how everyone begins.
tl;dr... You should find a pixel program you are fine or comfortable with firstly; that is largely your choice. I would suggest Graphics Gale, as I've heard good things about it, or MS Paint, because it's simple to use for beginners imo. Afterwards, you probably want to tackle getting better at the actual techniques of pixel art. I would suggest hitting up a few pixel art tutorials/basics by Gas13
, and Derek Yu