Updated my post on Tile Maps

Discussion and feedback on Construct 2

Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 1:35 am

Earlier I wrote a post on my blog about using Construct 2 to create platformers for Firefox OS. @Aphrodite was kind enough to point out that it was more efficient to use tile maps than to pull in tile images one by one. So I wrote a new tutorial just on tile maps. I discovered that Construct 2 will remove white space and resize quite nicely as well. Thank you, @Aphrodite!

Here's my post on Tile Maps. http://firefoxosgaming.blogspot.com/2014/10/tile-maps-in-construct-2.html.

And as always, I'm happy to know if I goofed up! I'm going to continue to write about Construct 2 for the Firefox OS audience, which is HTML5 all the way, same as Construct 2.
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 5:12 am

@Bob Thulfram this is not tilemaps... this is sprite.

In tilemap, you can't even access the animation.
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:24 am

I may have my terminology wrong. I am inserting a tile map into a sprite and using the animation to determine which image will display. But I don't think I ever referred to a tilemap object. I'll add a note to my post, but I'm pretty vague on what the TileMap object does and why I want it.

I see that there is a tilemap object which is defined at https://www.scirra.com/manual/172/tilemap. And another entry on Tilemap Bars at https://www.scirra.com/manual/171/tilemap-bar.

For just putting down tiles, it seems like the method I used would be simple enough. But what are the real advantages of the Tilemap object? It looks more complicated.
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:38 am

Well... I would advice you to learn some more before you start posting things on your blog - not too be rude but to prevent people from laughing after reading your posts.
Like you have noticed. Your terminology is all wrong. You are inserting a "sprite sheet" into a Sprite object to use it's frames as tiles on layout.
And if you don't know the difference between Sprite and Tilemap that only means you need to learn a bit more :)
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:47 am

The beauty of a blog is that you can revise your posts. If my terminology is wrong, I'll correct it. I can see that sprite sheet is the proper term. Unlike many others, I'm not worried a whole lot if people laugh at me. I've written more than 100 posts on Firefox OS programming and a few on using Construct 2 for making games for Firefox OS.

Laugh all you want. I hope it makes you feel good. It doesn't make me feel bad and the result will be that the mistakes will get fixed. In general it sounds like my post works.
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:00 am

By the way, @shinkan, I looked for a Construct 2 glossary and didn't find it. Is there a glossary?

My experience with tile maps and sprite sheets is that the terms are often used interchangeably in the game industry but I could always be wrong. :D
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:04 am

Bob Thulfram wrote:But what are the real advantages of the Tilemap object?

It will make dungeon generator much easy, you can manage your tiling by array, etc. This will also let you to provide user-modded mapping much easier. In short, it made what you did less painful and easier to maintain.

Bob Thulfram wrote:It looks more complicated.

It simplify what you did.

Bob Thulfram wrote:My experience with tile maps and sprite sheets is that the terms are often used interchangeably in the game industry but I could always be wrong. :D

In C2, sprite sheet is the compiled tile of sprite animation, I think.
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:26 am

I'm not laughing at all, You missed my point.
What I wanted to say is that you should get more research and knowledge before you post that kind of tutorials on pretty basic stuff, so you don't need to make that fixes in future. If you make sure that all informations you are providing are correct that will make you look like a professional. But if you write tutorials and fix them every time someone puts a comments "this is wrong" then it clearly says you have no idea what are you doing and people will noticed that immediately and stop reading them.
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 5:58 pm

@shinkan I thought about your post a bit more and I think you are wrong. Not about the words "sprite sheet" and "tile map" (although the fact that "tiles" are in the sprite sheet is a bit confusing), but more for your unasked-for advice.

While your advice might have been fine more than 50 years ago, the world today is changing way to fast to sit on the sidelines and study until I know enough. Everything is changing and people's terminology is likely to be a bit loose.

Yes, there is a difference between sprite objects and tilemap objects. But the files that are pulled in aren't as clearly defined. The sprite sheet I used was a set of tiles and it looks just like a tile map you might see on the Tiled web site (except that Tiler tile maps also have XML data and the proper name for those tile maps is a TMX file.

I don't think you were helpful in your criticism because you didn't say something like:

Use the term "sprite sheet" when referring to sprites and use "tile maps" when to the tilemap object. A sprite sheet is a simple art file but a tile map is ....


A glossary would be really helpful. Maybe there is one. Maybe not. But if there is, it would have been helpful to point to it.

Everything is moving very fast and names are changing. Most of the people who are working with Construct 2 seem to be aware of this and try to be helpful if someone doesn't understand some part of something. While I love Construct 2 a lot, I feel like it's isn't completely a finished product (I'm looking at you, Android and iOS) and I don't think it will be for a while because browser adoption of HTML5 is still a bit spotty and because HTML5 is a broad collection of technologies, some of those are baked, some are half-baked, and others are still a dream (MIDI, for example).

The idea of me making one mistake and people laughing at me and not reading my blog is not appropriate in an age where things are changing very fast, and the rate of change is accellerating. People who are successful in cutting-edge technology learn to not be distressed by loose terminology and pay attention to the essentials. My blog post (so far) seems to be accurate and I think will be useful for people who are trying to adapt Construct 2 to a Firefox OS mobile-only UX.

I'm sharing my blog posts with the Construct 2 audience in hopes that I'll find out if I've made any significant mistakes and I will change my post to say "sprite sheet" instead of "tile map". But my main focus is on using HTML5 to make games for the devices that support HTML5 (which so far is Firefox OS, which Amazon recently jumping on the bandwagon, Tizen falling off, and Microsoft marching in the wrong direction). If you read my other blog posts, you'll see that they are covering HTML5 in great detail. Everything I do is tested and works.

I am reminded of a saying I heard many times when I worked for IBM (a long time ago). "There are three names for everything and every name has three meanings."
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Post » Wed Oct 08, 2014 6:15 pm

DuckfaceNinja wrote:
Bob Thulfram wrote:But what are the real advantages of the Tilemap object?

It will make dungeon generator much easy, you can manage your tiling by array, etc. This will also let you to provide user-modded mapping much easier. In short, it made what you did less painful and easier to maintain.

Bob Thulfram wrote:It looks more complicated.

It simplify what you did.

Bob Thulfram wrote:My experience with tile maps and sprite sheets is that the terms are often used interchangeably in the game industry but I could always be wrong. :D

In C2, sprite sheet is the compiled tile of sprite animation, I think.


Well, I'm not at all interested in making dungeon generators or user-modded mapping.

Simple is in the eye of the beholder.

A sprite sheet is a compiled [set of] tiles [used for] sprite animation. But, Ashley has figured out a very cool hack to use this as a way to place tiles on a layer. He gives a good example of this use in his tutorial on platformers at https://www.scirra.com/tutorials/253/how-to-make-a-platform-game/page-2. This is a cool tutorial, although the Construct 2 user interface has changed slightly and the wording for importing a sprite has changed from "Importing a sprite strip" to "Import frames" followed by "From sprite strip...". And Ashley talks about tiles and tilesets and the tiles.png file.

The tilemap object sounds useful for the things you recommend, but not for the simple hand-placed layouts I'm working with. But thanks for your answers and it gives me a clue about why I might or might not want to use the tilemap object.
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