The development train keeps up its momentum with the latest implemented system: Map Scrolling. Yeah, I know, it’s not exactly sexy, but it’s something that is super important, and key to the look and feel of the game.
Now, as I’ve said over and over again, I’m still in prototype mode, so I just whipped up something pretty rudimentary. I know there are ways to to improve it, however, it does what I need it to do, and that is all that really matters.
As for how it’s implemented, it comes down to the following:
You can move the camera left/update/down/right with the AWSD keys
If you move the mouse cursor to the end of the screen, the map will scroll in that direction
The movement class has a boundary, defined by the size of the tile map itself. This makes sure that you can’t just keep scrolling in any direction forever.
The only real issue thus far (besides just a general level of polishing) is that when scrolling is started by the mouse cursor being on the edge of the screen, it only goes horizontal or vertical. No diagonal at all. Diagonal movement does work with the AWSD keys, so I’m sure it’s something small I’m missing. But not going to waste any time on it at the moment.
Something else I’ll be keeping my mind on in the future is Pro Camera 2D. This will, presumably, do everything I want to do, out of the box. I’m very careful about not using anyone else’s assets, until there is no other recourse. But it’s something to keep in mind if I end up needing to focus on other things down the line, instead of wasting time re-implementing camera movement logic.
Anyway, of course, after I added this new scrolling functionality, you know I had to make a larger map to take advantage of it. It was at this point that I had to go back to my dreaded CSV files I used to dynamically load the maps at run time. Ugh. I felt like I was that guy in The Matrix who had been watching it for so long, he could pick out the girl in the red dress, or whatever he said. I’m sitting here making this map, looking at a spreadsheet of numbers, losing my mind, but at the same time, sort of seeing the patterns form enough to know what I was doing.
There is some software out there, called Tiled Map Editor. I have know about it for a while, but didn’t want to deal with it due to the fact that I would really need an all inclusive solution, including allow me to set triggers, waypoints, units, etc., on a map. This software would only allow me to create the map.
However, I just found out that you can export your maps into a CSV file. While I haven’t looked at it yet, it might end up looking to be in the same format as mine, and that could be a boon. A sort of middle ground for speedy development of different maps, while I continue to prototype things. As with everything else, I’ll just keep it in the back of my mind, as I begin to move on to other important things.
Finally, with regards to keeping things in the back of my mind, well, that’s a bad idea. Sort of. I shouldn’t exclusively use my mind to remember things. I should use software. For Rose of Eternity – Family & Country, I used the very open Google Code, which apparently shut down in 2016. I already knew it was going to shut down at some point, and archive whatever used to be. I’m a little annoyed I can’t find what old project, but… Yeah, anyway, I’m thinking about using the free version of Trello. I just need something visual so I can keep everything together as this project continues to grow.