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Thread: Designing a BIG level; best method?

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    Clicker Multimedia Fusion 2

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    Designing a BIG level; best method?

    What's the best method, in your opinion, for designing a big level?

    I was planning on making a space sidescroller which involves the ability to go very very fast (about 25px per frame max). The engine works fine, but as you can expect, you cover a lot of ground at that speed.

    The obvious obstacle is how to design a level big enough to fit without being too much of a drain on the game. The level would probably be several thousand px wide.


    So what's the best way? I've outlined a few possibilities here:

    * Draw the level as a bitmap
    ... and import it as a huge background object?
    ... and slice it into smaller bg objects, using them as tiles?
    ... and save it as a GIF or JPEG and load with APO?

    * Build the level out of tiles, using Quickbackdrops where many tiles repeat?

    * Have a floating Active Object that blacks out the edges of the frame, then use a level editor system to paste the obstacles and scenery as you fly (just under the blackenned edges, so you don't see them 'popping' into existence). The pasted tiles would need to be repasted if you flew backwards.

    * Give up and make a Pong clone? :whistle:

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    Clicker Multimedia Fusion 2 DeveloperiOS Export ModuleSWF Export ModuleInstall Creator Pro

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    Re: Designing a BIG level; best method?

    It depends. If no interaction with the background is required, you could load a picture into an Active Picture object and move the AP. Seems much smoother to me than scrolling a giant level. Another cool side effect: you can generally disable "Save background" since the AP won't be affected bei your Active Objects, giving a great boost in speed.

    But that would mean you'd also have to move the enemies manually into the playfield and activate them once their in range. In a space shooter this could be an option. You could still have a giant frame where you can place the AOs on the appropriate place on the background.

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    Forum Moderator Fusion 2.5 DeveloperHTML5 Export ModuleiOS Export ModuleSWF Export Module
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    Re: Designing a BIG level; best method?

    I don't think there's a problem with having a level a few thousand pixels wide, but objects that large do tend to take up a lot of memory/hard drive space. Building the levels out of tiles and smaller objects sounds more feasible to me than having one huge bitmap, though the suggestion by JoKa sounds quite interesting as well.

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    Re: Designing a BIG level; best method?

    I have a feeling mmf likes it if you paste a number of smaller backdrops more than 1 huge mega backdrop. But then again, ive used huge images for backdrops before.

    Something you should be aware of though is that APO are a hella lot slower than actives when making backdrops of them. I had a game where we tried both ways, and we reduced the map loading times by about 85% using actives instead of apos. I don't remember if there was any difference with the actual backdrops though.

    Large playfields are usually not a problem, unless you fill them with lots of enemies and such from start that use AI and lots of events. Best bet there is to either inactivate them, or only spawn them when getting close to the area.

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    Re: Designing a BIG level; best method?

    With a giant APO I had smoother scrolling in 1024x768 than with an other game using tiles in 800x600. At least when scrolling slowly, haven't tested with higher speed. Being able to turn off "Save background" for all objects helps a lot. Of course, this method is much less flexible than the more "traditional" ways. But if you have no other requirements than scrolling the background, it could be a good choice.

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