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Thread: Which way is most efficient? (regarding Frames)

  1. #1
    Clicker Fusion 2.5 DeveloperAndroid Export ModuleiOS Export ModuleSWF Export Module
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    Question Which way is most efficient? (regarding Frames)

    Hello,

    I don’t have much experience with MMF2 but I think I might be working in an inefficient way. Im not so sure yet, so I have this question.
    Is it better to work with multiple frames that have less code or less frames that have lots of code (broken into group events, over about 1000 total) ?

    I like to work with multiple frames that have less code because its much easier to navigate and troubleshoot. However Im unsure of its efficiency…
    (In my head "Frames" are "Scenes" but maybe I shouldn't use them that way.)

    The program I’m developing has lots of graphics (large jpegs, moderately sized pngs).
    Each frame has almost the same exact graphics in it. What I don’t know is if MMF2 regards identical graphics from different frames as one single object or as separate objects? (is this something I can control??)
    My file gets bigger and bigger every time I add a frame, so my guess is no. But I’d like to know if there is a way around this?

    Thanks

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    Clicker Fusion 2.5 DeveloperAndroid Export ModuleHTML5 Export ModuleiOS Export ModuleSWF Export Module
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    I would suggest using global events for your whole engine if possible. Leave local frame events for scripting things relevant to that frame only.

    It will treat objects from different frames as the same if you check in the Global Object box on the object's properties. Else it will save a separate object for each frame.

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    Why do you need multiple near-identical frames? Is there a way you can do this dynamically all within one frame?

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    Don't use global events, there's far too many limitations on the global event editor. It's a fairly big waste of time to go down that path. Everything in one frame is the way to go. Your 1000 events should be broken up into groups so they're not all running at the same time, they're only activated/deactivated when you need them.

    Also, if you're really concerned about file size due to duplications of objects, the installer will compress the file and reduce duplications. even Flash and iOS games are compressed before they install. You shouldn't really worry about filesize in this way, but definitely be concerned about duplicating code due to the problem of maintenance down the line. That's why the 1 frame method is the preferred way all around.

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    What type of game are you making? Putting everything in one frame is very difficult to manage and debug, but 1000 global events seems unnecessary. Also, adding too many large objects to one frame is going to kill your frame rate.

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    My projects are +1000 events in one frame with activating and deactivating groups and run fine. It's not the number of events, it's how you use them. Many large objects on screen kills the framerate, many large animations in one object doesn't kill the framerate, just the memory... but you can program it to load frames dynamically from the hard drive after runtime, that saves memory.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pdsoft View Post
    Hello,

    I don’t have much experience with MMF2 but I think I might be working in an inefficient way. Im not so sure yet, so I have this question.
    Is it better to work with multiple frames that have less code or less frames that have lots of code (broken into group events, over about 1000 total) ?

    I like to work with multiple frames that have less code because its much easier to navigate and troubleshoot. However Im unsure of its efficiency…
    (In my head "Frames" are "Scenes" but maybe I shouldn't use them that way.)

    The program I’m developing has lots of graphics (large jpegs, moderately sized pngs).
    Each frame has almost the same exact graphics in it. What I don’t know is if MMF2 regards identical graphics from different frames as one single object or as separate objects? (is this something I can control??)
    My file gets bigger and bigger every time I add a frame, so my guess is no. But I’d like to know if there is a way around this?

    Thanks
    I've made games using both methods and in my experience the biggest problem with multiple frames vs. a single frame happens when you need to change or add something(s) later. Nothing like having to go through 100+ frames and change code around later. IT SUCKS.

    However the best part about using multiple frames might be that some can have totally different parts from each other. So say one frame might be a top-down adventure area, another might be a weapon shop, or maybe a side-scroller action deal, still another might be a mini-game or cutscene of some sort. Can you do the same thing using 1000 grouped events and smart use of deactivating / re-activating those groups? Sure, I don't see why not but I guess it all depends on the game you're trying to make and how complex it is.

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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by redpandagames View Post
    What type of game are you making? Putting everything in one frame is very difficult to manage and debug, but 1000 global events seems unnecessary. Also, adding too many large objects to one frame is going to kill your frame rate.
    Im making a visual novel
    Originally I tried to figure out a way to get everything in one frame. I was going to utilize a text array object but immediately ran into its limitations regarding string character lengths. The 1000 events is every scene combined. Each scene really only has about 150 unique events. I could have optimized that more but I wanted to build something that is reusable.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jacob View Post
    Why do you need multiple near-identical frames? Is there a way you can do this dynamically all within one frame?
    The reason I chose different frames is because of organization. Im using the frames as scenes. There are about 30k-40k words in the game total. Each scene has about 1,000-2,000 words each, certain sentences are accessed dynamically depending on events etc. Its much easier to navigate things this way but I can also see its not very optimal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan View Post
    Don't use global events, there's far too many limitations on the global event editor. It's a fairly big waste of time to go down that path. Everything in one frame is the way to go. Your 1000 events should be broken up into groups so they're not all running at the same time, they're only activated/deactivated when you need them.

    Also, if you're really concerned about file size due to duplications of objects, the installer will compress the file and reduce duplication. even Flash and iOS games are compressed before they install. You shouldn't really worry about filesize in this way, but definitely be concerned about duplicating code due to the problem of maintenance down the line. That's why the 1 frame method is the preferred way all around.
    I haven't used any global events yet, though I was planning to implement one for volume control. But I think I might be able to pull that off through global values...I havent tested it yet.
    You mentioned the duplication of code, I have ran into problems with that, lol! I made a code template and copied it to every frame but when I ran into bugs that meant every frame had those bugs. It was a complete headache.


    Thanks for all the advice!
    Im going to try and organize my game into larger frames. As I explained, my main reason for multiple frames was text management. Some things will still need to be separate because the game is not 100% visual novel but I think I can make that work. Im already 20 frames deep and just wanted to know if its worth it to change my methods? (Which I think it is now) Im just going have to use lots of comments in the editor so I know whats going on.

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    Clicker Fusion 2.5 DeveloperAndroid Export ModuleHTML5 Export ModuleiOS Export ModuleSWF Export Module
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    Well, evaluate the pros and cons, there's no perfect method. I have tried both and to me global events is the way to go. Yes, you lose qualifiers and alterable value names, and since you have no qualifiers, you may need to repeat events for multiple objects.

    Having everything in one frame will need you to manage object placement/creation or you will need to make a level editor, which I think should not be necessary as the frame editor is a level editor on its own, and you would be spending lots of time just on this. Also depends what kind of game you are making, one method could be better than the other.

    Just try both and decide what works best for you. The global event method has worked fine for me, had made more than 10 commercial games with it and never had a problem (it saved me a lot of time and confusion). But, hey, try both and see what suits you better. Cheers!

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    pdsoft - You're asking about efficiency, but efficiency of what? Eg memory, speed, file size, time spent making your program, etc.

    In terms of time taken:
    I've been down the one frame per scene, and my game progressed quite quickly, and was fun to make, using the frame editor as a level editor.
    Yes, bugs were a bit of a pain to copy and paste to all frames (as well as graphic changes!), but would probably have taken less time overall than rewriting it to work with a single frame and my own level editor, which I did and the game still isn't finished yet!
    Adding new features now takes a lot longer, since I have to update my level editor each time. I needed qualifiers too, so couldn't use Global Events.
    I'll end up with a level editor that could be included with the game as some consolation.
    Perhaps I should have taken some time to look at Macro programs to automate the copying and pasting of changes to each frame?

    I think where MMF2 excels using 1 frame per level/scene and having levels that vary quite a bit to add variety (as long as there aren't hundreds of levels!) - much harder/takes longer to do that with a single frame IMHO, but I know others on these forums swear by the single frame approach.

    Unfortunately, you'll probably have to try various methods until you find what works for you.

    Good luck with your visual novel!

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