EM:Tutorial000: Starting the editor

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  • Explain context switcher/selector (what is it actually?)
  • Explain object layer (It crashes on me)

Turorial 000: Starting the editor

Before we start I (ElonNarai) will assume you have the entire game as of SVN 1393 (If you don't know what SVN is or you have installed it you can just continue) and can play the game as it is. Just so you know I'm huge fan of Microsoft and although I love linux and other operating systems, none has stolen my heart. A lot of this tutorial (or any other written by mine) will assume you are working on Windows. If you're not working on windows than you might have some problems following my tutorials, however I will try to provide answers for other Operatings Systems.

In this tutorial we will not change anything and you should answer negative on any question that asks you if you want to save if one might come up. We are just going to get you to be familiar with the interface. Since I'm working on Windows you will see parts of windows, but the editor is build to look and work the same no matter on which Operating System you work (Windows, OSx, Linux). If you have problems with the editor you can go to the forum of the project and request help. A lot of people will be more than happy to try and get things working for you. Further you will read a lot of technical information and even if you are not intressted in it or don't understand it I recommend you read it through, if you do have a problem and someone helps you that bit of information might just be what you needed to understand what the other person told you.

1 Start the editor

After starting up it should look something like this
But first lets start the editor. In Windows and OSx we simply double click on the icon or executable. On linux you will need to launch using "allacrost-editor", however you might be able to launch it differntly depending on the type of system, Window manager or anything else. If everything goes as it should you should have a new window in front of you titled "Hero of Allacrost Level Editor".

2 Loading a map

Allacrost exists out all kinds of map and in the game (you did play the game at least once, didn't you?) you will travel all over the world by moving from one map to another. Since maps are not made in one run, but multiple runs, including testing, checking and "oh hell why isn't that fixed" we will try to load ourselves. It also gives an opportunity which basic functionality will be added.

So click on File and then on Open... or if you prefer the keyboard just press Ctrl+O

And this is how it looks after loading a map
If everything has gone well, you will now have a default "Open File Dialog" which is aimed at the allacrost-map folder. Just open anyone of them but if you like comparing pictures I suggest you do the same as me and open demo_cave.lua, you might not be able to see the ".lua" part on windows as it can hide known extension, in that case you can click on demo_cave which is the same file.

Once you open it, the editor will load the map file and see what kind of data is required and load the appropiate images. When everything is done, you will see the map in front of you.

In the center you can see the map as it is used in the game and at the bottom you will find all the different tiles you can use to point. There are more than one tileset. Tileset are a group of tiles and often belong to a certain category. We have for example one for the ground, which contains all kind of ground related tiles, but also have one for walls. This way if the artists create a new tileset that contains something really sweet (like a picture of choco bar) than we don't have to modify existing tileset to include it in maps made prior to the picture of the choco bar.

This is the toolbar in the top

Lets first take a look at the toolbar. From left to right we have

  1. Fill Current layer, this fills the current layer with the selected tile
  2. Draw mode, Click on a tile in the map it will be painted with the selected tile
  3. Move mode, This will move a drawn tile to another tile. Just click on the a tile in the map, hold down the mouse button while you move to another, if you release it then those that tile you hovered over will be replaced by the tile that you started dragging.
  4. Erase mode, Removes the tile.
  5. Undo, undoes the last silly mistake you made.
  6. Redo, redoes the silly mistake-mistake you made.
  7. Marguee Select, this is a toggle, meaning it can be on or off. If you have it on and you are in draw mode than you draw a box on the map that will perform the actions of the selected mode on all selected tiles. Usefull if you want to create a large chamber but don't want to click on each every tile.
  8. Context Selector, In the game you have different contexts. The idea behind a context is that you can create a shop on the map. If you enter the shop you change context (outside to inside shop) and the map will change to reflect this. I will demonstrate the use and advantages of contexts in a later tutorial.

If you have been playing around with drawing a few things, you might have noticed that sometiles don't change completly but only the background. This is because each level consist out of four layers. Each layer drawns over the layer below him. The object layer however is special as it used to render object that are either above the ground or behind walls.

Final words

By now you should have a basic idea of how the editor looks and functions. We haven't gone in any detail about scripting or audio and such but this should allow you to create a few levels with existing art. With each tutorial we will go further in depth on certain features of the Hero Of Allacrost engine as the capabilities of the editor.

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