Additional mapping ideas ...

Got something on your mind about the project? This is the correct place for that.
Forum rules
This forum is for feature requests, content changes additions, anything not a Bug in the software.
Please report all bugs on the Support Forums
Post Reply
zick
Novice
Novice
Posts: 194
Joined: 21 Feb 2007, 04:30
Location: City Of Champions Again

Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by zick » 21 Jan 2009, 22:50

I came up with an idea the other day and wanted to post this as a suggestion. I've been trying to come up with a way to allow for maps that don't look like they're made from tiles (other than drawing out a scene and splicing it into tiles). I thought this solution could solve the problem, so I'm posting it here to see what people think:

Add a layer to maps for a solid (not comprised of tiles) background image. If the background image is smaller than the specified map size the background image is tiled. Above this layer allow dev's to lay down tiles, and above that objects. Use the background image as only a base layer. This way we can do intricate artwork like large murals on sides of buildings, mosiacs on floors, and much more. Also to keep file sizes down, I say this layer should only allow an 8-bit (256 indexed colors) png with no alpha channel. This layer could also have an option to paralax, in case we want to use it as a layer for under bridge high in the mountains, etc.

I also thought that maybe if this idea caught on we could move to a new mapping system somewhere down the road where we don't use tiles at all, only a solid background image with context-sensitive objects laid over top of that. By context sensitive I mean, that the image displayed by that object depends on what is going on in the game at that moment. Is the object a patch of flowers that the player is standing on top of? Make them bend as if the player standing there is crushing the flowers. Is the object a torch/lampost and the server tells the client that it is nightime? Make the object light up. Is the object a tree/stone NPC that gives away fruit/ores and the server tells the client that this NPC is no longer able to give anything away because it's supply has been exhausted? Make the tree show that it has no more fruit or that the stone can't be chiseled for anymore ores.

Also, I was thinking this background image could only use greyscale colors that could be replaced based on what time of day it is or is there a storm (rain, snow, sand) taking place on the map right now.

Discuss ...
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 22 Jan 2009, 00:08

Regarding background images:
The idea already came up a few times. Possible applications are parallax background sceneries for mountain peaks, cloud cities and the like.

Regarding using background images for details like floor mosaiks:
What speaks against integrating such details into the map as tilesets? When I want a screen-filling complex mosaik on a citysquare which is one large image I would just import the whole image as a tileset into Tiled and place it in the map. I don't know when you used Tiled the last time, but in the more recent versions you don't have to place every single tile manually. Now you can use the stamp feature to mark a whole area from a tileset and copy it to the map with two clicks.

Regarding creating whole maps as one image:
A 100x100 tile map (very small for TMW standards) has 3200x3200 = 10.240.000 pixels. Creating such a huge image with pixel art techniques in a good quality would take hundreds of working hours. To create a good-looking map in a reasonable timespan the map artist would have to copy&paste a lot. When your map building is based on copy&pasting anyway it would be much more convenient to use a specialized map editor to design the map than a standard graphic program. And so we did a 360° turn back to the tile-based map design approach.

Regarding a more dynamic game environment:
Server-sided script bindings and netcode for exchanging map tiles on-the-fly are on my todo list.

Regarding day and night change:
Realistic light conditions are much harder to do in a convincing way than you think.
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
User avatar
octalot
Novice
Novice
Posts: 214
Joined: 23 Sep 2008, 20:15

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by octalot » 22 Jan 2009, 00:30

Crush wrote:Regarding a more dynamic game environment:
Server-sided script bindings and netcode for exchanging map tiles on-the-fly are on my todo list.
Will that include changing the collision layer / some other way to destroy and rebuilt walkways?
Retired from TMW; incomplete projects looking for a dev:
Cave foliage (plants up the walls): http://forums.themanaworld.org/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=5659
Cave wetwalls (water down the walls): http://forums.themanaworld.org/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=5816
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 22 Jan 2009, 00:41

Sure. But scripters should better keep in mind that there might be characters, monsters or other objects in a zone they suddenly make unwalkable.
Last edited by Crush on 22 Jan 2009, 16:06, edited 1 time in total.
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
User avatar
Jaxad0127
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 4209
Joined: 01 Nov 2007, 18:35
Location: Internet

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Jaxad0127 » 22 Jan 2009, 02:12

NPCs might be a problem, but PCs and most mobs could just be killed.

Convincing day/night would need a lot of client work. It would probably be best to integrate that into the weather system that's been in planning.
Image
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 22 Jan 2009, 03:02

jaxad0127 wrote:NPCs might be a problem, but PCs and most mobs could just be killed.
So people can be killed by closing doors? Also keep in mind that we are going to implement mechanics for reviving dead player characters where they died. So I would rather suggest to moved every being which is caught in a blocked area to the nearest non-blocked position (this mechanic could also be useful for other situations, like buggy warps).

When you would rather see everyone dead who is caught in a scripted cave-in you are still free to use tmw.being_damage to kill everything in the area just before blocking it.
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
Turmfalke
Novice
Novice
Posts: 350
Joined: 10 Aug 2008, 19:28
Location: Maligree's Wonderful Garden

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Turmfalke » 22 Jan 2009, 15:53

for most cases a "wait till object leaved the area" would work to and would be more natural.
I stand beside the holy man
The monarchs fear my wrath
None may move the way I can
Ever the crooked path
a knight
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 22 Jan 2009, 15:56

Turmfalke wrote:for most cases a "wait till object leaved the area" would work to and would be more natural.
Not really considering the internal workings of the collision system.
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
Turmfalke
Novice
Novice
Posts: 350
Joined: 10 Aug 2008, 19:28
Location: Maligree's Wonderful Garden

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Turmfalke » 22 Jan 2009, 15:58

do we speak about tmwserv or eathena?
I stand beside the holy man
The monarchs fear my wrath
None may move the way I can
Ever the crooked path
a knight
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 22 Jan 2009, 15:59

TMWServ.
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
Turmfalke
Novice
Novice
Posts: 350
Joined: 10 Aug 2008, 19:28
Location: Maligree's Wonderful Garden

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Turmfalke » 22 Jan 2009, 16:01

ok, I have no clue how the collision system of tmwserv works(I don't even understand the movement system)
I stand beside the holy man
The monarchs fear my wrath
None may move the way I can
Ever the crooked path
a knight
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 22 Jan 2009, 23:52

There was some confusion on IRC regarding the respawn mechanics I implied above. To avoid any more wild guessing leading to false assumptions I documented the planned death handling of TMWServ on the wiki:
http://wiki.themanaworld.org/index.php/Afterlife
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
zick
Novice
Novice
Posts: 194
Joined: 21 Feb 2007, 04:30
Location: City Of Champions Again

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by zick » 28 Jan 2009, 01:43

Crush wrote:Regarding using background images for details like floor mosaiks: What speaks against integrating such details into the map as tilesets?
Well, I was thinking what if a mosiac is 16 tiles by 16 tiles (an entire tileset). I know that's really big, but in my mind I think alot of the maps we have are too small (perspective wise) for an MMO. Granted we don't have the volume of players as one of those big box MMO's, but I feel that if we were to ever anticipate that kind of volume, we would castle gates that are 6 tiles wide, distance between cave walls would be just as wide, hallways in hotels the same, etc. I know I could use two tilesets on a map, but IMHO I think this could be a better fix.

Also about paralaxing, I came up with an interesting idea the other night. What about a layer that is actually larger than the entire map that could provide the illusion of depth of field for the bottom edge of a map (especially if we had scrolling boundaries). This could provide the effect of a tree wall, cliff, picket fence, etc. on the bottom most edge of a scrolling area that would scroll 2x as fast as the layers below (the ones the player is on). If a paralax background, for a bridge over a valley or a cliff overlooking a city, scrolls half as fast as the regular map and is attached to the top of a scrollable region, why not an area attached to the bottom of a scrollable region that goes 2x as fast. That can provide some really awesome 2D effects that I don't think I've ever seen in a pixel-based MMO.
User avatar
Crush
TMW Adviser
TMW Adviser
Posts: 8046
Joined: 25 Aug 2005, 17:08
Location: Germany

Re: Additional mapping ideas ...

Post by Crush » 28 Jan 2009, 14:34

zick wrote:Well, I was thinking what if a mosiac is 16 tiles by 16 tiles (an entire tileset). I know that's really big[...]
I still fail to see a reason to not use the existing technology for this and just copy&paste the whole image as a tileset into the map.
  • former Manasource Programmer
  • former TMW Pixel artist
  • NOT a game master

Please do not send me any inquiries regarding player accounts on TMW.


You might have heard a certain rumor about me. This rumor is completely false. You might also have heard the other rumor about me. This rumor is 100% accurate.
Post Reply