What's the best way to implement a vector style (i.e., not pixel art) for backgrounds in a game.
Here's the deal. I'm making a platformer. I know the art direction I want to take this project. Think Earthworm Jim, but with the slickness of Shank. Yeah, I know, lofty goals.
I'm not so much concerned with coding at this point, but more with the overall layout, the workflow. I just don't know what would be the smartest, most resource conscious way of doing this. I don't want my game to look pixel-arty, but rather, slick and smooth. I'd like to use Adobe Illustrator and Spriter to create all (or most) of the assets (primarily characters). But it's really the backgrounds that I'm at a loss with. I want them to look good, not overly repetitive. Yes, I do realize there can't be a billion unique elements in a level.
I understand why tilemaps are used. I understand the limitations of using huge images for backgrounds, and why it's best to re-use elements to cut down on the size. But between Tilemap Editor, or Shoebox, or Texture Packer, or whatever else....I have no idea how to go about this.
Any suggestions or helpful links would be appreciated!