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Thread: world creator...?

  1. #1

    Question world creator...?

    wassup shellerz,

    i found an app called 'world creator' for making iso and platformer maps. what i don't know, because i'm not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to figuring this stuff out, is can this be used in conjunction with novashell. and if so...how. i understand the map would be made in world creator, but i don't understand how to make the crossover from that app to a functional map in novashell.

    i'd appreciate if anyone could check out this app, and let me know if it's shellable. hate to ask, but i'm at a loss to figure it out.

  2. #2
    Lesser Knight
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    Not really.

    Of course you can import images you made with any program. To make a map in an external application, however, you will have to write a program to convert from one format to another. This is only feasible if/when Seth releases Novashell's source code; otherwise you'll have to reverse engineer Novashell's map format (which seems like a waste of time.) Also, making a conversion tool only makes sense for someone who already has a large amount of maps in some other format anyway.

    Anyway, if application X has some functionality you really think is useful, you may want to make a feature recommendation so Seth can consider adding it to Novashell's editor.

  3. #3
    Administrator Seth's Avatar
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    Hmm, it looks like it writes a simple text format called ".vew" file, but actually I think that program is designed more to make the tiles and export them to use in your own editor (like novashell's) instead of meant as a general map editor (except to test).

    If any C++ programmers are interested in writing importers/exporters they should drop me a line. It's pretty involved though.

    A way to write scripted lua importer/exporter might be the way to go, will give this some thought.
    Seth A. Robinson
    Robinson Technologies

  4. #4
    Lesser Knight
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    Writing one in Lua would be much easier. You'd need access to the io package though. Also, I don't know if or with what Novashell's maps are compressed. (There'd need to be an interface for it--zlib, etc.) That should be it, though.

  5. #5

    Question

    seth & co.,

    correct me if i'm wrong, but my impression of 'world creator' was similar to what seth had stated, basically designing the tiles/maps in the ext app and then doing the grunt work; collision markers, pathways, scripts etc.. in the novashell editor. is this correct?

    also, does the perspective of the maps depend solely on the tile art? meaning, if i want iso-like (diablo), i draw maps in that perspective and setup the collisions likewise, if i want overhead (gauntlet), do likewise.

    it seems like novashell may lesson the barrier artwise, and codewise to rpg adventure/discovery type genres moreso than torque game builder. i'm just trying to wrap my head around the basics.

    i like the graphic abilities and features of 'world creator' for making cool maps and i'm trying to figure out if it is worth the time and effort to figure out how to get those maps into the novashell editor.

    if not, does anyone have suggestions of the best workflow pipeline for maps, items, enemies and such? or is it just a matter of any compliant graphics tool?

    sorry for all the 's, i just think this is a really cool engine and i'd like to get my feet wet cranking out some simple games to teach myself on it. so i'm seeking the best path to that end. the less unnecessary headaches i can avoid, the better.

  6. #6
    Lesser Knight
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrio View Post
    also, does the perspective of the maps depend solely on the tile art? meaning, if i want iso-like (diablo), i draw maps in that perspective and setup the collisions likewise, if i want overhead (gauntlet), do likewise.
    Correct. However, I don't believe the editor currently has a feature to snap tiles to an isometric grid which would ease the process greatly. You should still be able to make tiles of any shape, though.

  7. #7
    Administrator Seth's Avatar
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    While there isn't any isometric-specific support, Sphair has built a test map with isometric tiles and it actually works very well - basically if you set the snap to half the height and width of the tile, you can paste them staggered out correctly.

    (to clarify, by iso tiles I mean little diamond shaped things, the non-diamond parts are transparent, it's still pasted as a square)

    The recent change to allow X and Y settings on the snap was to help with this, Sphair's iso tiles measured 60 by 30 or something like that. His walls are tall vertical slices, the standard Y-based depth sorting worked very well with it.

    Maybe he'll post a screenshot sometime

    also, does the perspective of the maps depend solely on the tile art? meaning, if i want iso-like (diablo), i draw maps in that perspective and setup the collisions likewise, if i want overhead (gauntlet), do likewise.
    Right, it's really based on the art you import and how you setup the sorting and collision. For overhead, "depth sorting" isn't important, since you're looking straight down, you just put objects on a higher layer.

    For isometric or semi-birds-view or whatever you call the RPG top down test (is there a name for that? 2/3rds view maybe?) it's important to turn "Depth sorting" on on the layer properties. This means anything lower on the screen gets drawn AFTER anything higher, so players appear behind and in front of walls and trees correctly.

    If you're using isoshaped tiles, you should draw your collision lines in diagonal lines to match. (you edit each tile, then when you paste them around collision is already setup for you without thinking about it)

    Also, you CAN use multiple layers that are depth sorted together, you would just need to set their sort layer to the same #. (higher sort layers always draw over lower ones, ignoring depth sorting)

    The Y depthsort is set by the lowest point of collision setup for the image. This can actually be tweaked for special cases by using a dummy collision line first.. uh.. I'm probably going into too much detail, but keep that in mind for later.
    Last edited by Seth; 01-14-2007 at 11:02 PM.
    Seth A. Robinson
    Robinson Technologies

  8. #8

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    can you 'fake' iso by just drawing the art for the maps in that perspective, or do i not understand the engine yet?

  9. #9
    Administrator Seth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrio View Post
    can you 'fake' iso by just drawing the art for the maps in that perspective, or do i not understand the engine yet?
    Yes you can - Try to use smallish pieces for depth sorting to work right. (smallish horizontally, vertically doesn't matter) Best thing to do is play around with it.
    Seth A. Robinson
    Robinson Technologies

  10. #10
    ClanLib Developer
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    I've attached a screenshot from my iso test as Seth mentioned above. Its working really well.

    It would be nice to be able to set the z depth line manually for tiles, without having it use the lowest collision point, though
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  11. #11

    Default iso test...

    wow ,

    that is awesome. do you plan on adding a tutorial project for that sample to the community. it really shows the power and potential of the engine.

    did you do the art yourself. it has a very nice theme/atmosphere.

    i'm really looking forward to digging into this engine.

    thanx for the screenie...

  12. #12

    Default iso tutorial...

    me again sphair,

    is there any chance you could whip up a tutorial on how you made that isometric example; tile shapes, grip snap configs, layer sorting etc...

    that pic is awesome and i'd love to be able to be able to work on a true iso project. gamemaker and multimedia fusion 2 have iso engines but they are showing no mac love. torque game builder has a iso engine project being worked on by 'neo bindell' but who knows when that will come out, and torque has not been stellar with keeping the mac version in parity with the pc versions.

    i'd be willing to pay you for your time and effort. i keep clinging to the hope that torque game engine will become the ultimate 2d game engine, only because i bought it last year, but instability and garagegames usual 'wait or do it yourself motto' have worn me thin. so i'd like to put my full energy into learning novashell if i can crank out; scrolling shooterz, platformers (that work) and iso goodness.

    thanks,

    seth, hope the new version coming rocks...

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