Scene Editor

ZX80, ZX 81, ZX Spectrum, TS2068 and other clones
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amateus
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Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:13 am

Scene Editor

Post by amateus »

Hi,

Not sure if this is the correct place to post it, but because I develop exclusively to zx spectrum, I might as well post it here.

I've been developing for the last couple of weeks a scene editor (tile editor + scene tile placement+ export to c sp1 compatible) to aid me in my projects. Reason for this is that I felt the need to have a visual tool that allowed me to create a tile and place it in a scene with the attributes I want, and export it to a specific format that I could copy paste to a c project.

Hence the birth of my ZX Scene Editor. It allows me to create tiles (by hand or by copy-paste an image, width and height multiple of 8), position the tiles in a scene with ink, paper, bright attributes, and generate some code for tiles (the asm files, masked or not and the variable declarations) and also to generate code for the scene in a format I have specified.

Forward, I have a few more plans for this, including assigning properties to tile (when on screen, so same tile may have different properties and behaviors in game, allowing to define the scene format to be exported and a sprite editor.

My question here (besides showing off :lol:) is to have some input of features that you'd like to see in a project of this type, and if this is interesting for someone. I've made this for myself, but if there's enough interest in this I may consider it's release (windows only sorry).

Bellow some images (click on the thumbnail for a somewhat resized low quality image - apologies for that)

The editor plus preview
Image

Tile editor
Image

Exporting tiles
Image

Exporting the scene
Image

Thank you,
Antonio
stefano
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Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:39 pm

Re: Scene Editor

Post by stefano »

when I participated to the (unfinished) LadyHawke demo project, I needed a tool to mix zx pictures horizontally and normalize the attribute assignment and dithering, to permit smooth horizontal scrolling. .
Timmy
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Posts: 186
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:18 pm

Re: Scene Editor

Post by Timmy »

It's good that you make some tooling.

I made my games usually just by drawing the tiles in Gimp, and then draw the maps in Mappy.

Mappy will give me the map data, but I still needed a converter from images to bytes.

I tried to make a tool myself but it never got finished, as well as the game.

You tool looks good.
amateus
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Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:13 am

Re: Scene Editor

Post by amateus »

Hi,

Thank you both.

@stefano As sp1 is not particularly good for scrolling, that is something i consider out of scope, as this is mainly an editor for one screen. Nevertheless, the ability to add layers is interesting. I'll have a think about it

@Timmy yeah, my point precisely, I just wanted a tool where i could create tiles and place them on a map, and then export it. On the tiles front, I have implemented a feature where I can now copy an entire screen to the clipboard (from ZX Paintbrush or Paint for example), and automatically create all the 8x8 tiles for that screen, skipping empty and duplicates if I want to.

I'm now in the process of giving tiles that I add to screen (effectively to every char col,row that is occupied) properties, eg, platform/floor|water|animated|front/back, etc
amateus
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Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:13 am

Re: Scene Editor

Post by amateus »

Hi all,

Bit busy with the Scene editor developing the sprite editor. Took much more time that I was expecting, especially the automatic mask creation, but I finally did it. The sprite editor can now create, for now, 16x16 and 16x24 sprites, but does not add it to the scene, as I don't thin it's needed.

A coupe of pics:

The sprite Editor - Main features, for me, it's the flips and cloning. Also, in the background, everytime you change the picture, the mask is recalculated.
Image

The export updated. You can see it will generate the sprite ASM, including the mask, for each col/frame.
Image

and

Image

Now off to tile/scene properties and it's "done".

Cheers
stefano
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Posts: 1638
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:39 pm

Re: Scene Editor

Post by stefano »

:) good to have an sp1 specific kit
I think I'll extend the internal Sprite editor (originally by McKinnon) a bit more to produce clean raw data for the sp1.
[edit] On a second thought, it is already simple to rip off manually the 2 leading bytes, and the monochrome patterns are.. monochrome only. Better to leave it as it is or to add real features, first :)
derekfountain
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Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2018 1:49 pm

Re: Scene Editor

Post by derekfountain »

Will you be releasing it? It looks very useful.
amateus
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Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2019 9:13 am

Re: Scene Editor

Post by amateus »

Hi,

Thank you for the feedback @stefano and derekfountain.

@derekfountain to tell you the truth I really don't know. My problem is not making it available, my problem is that this was developed for my personal use and not for releasing it: it's not user friendly, almost no error handling and virtually no user feedback immplemented.

Regarding UI, I mean, while I'm working and testing if something annoys me in the interface I change it, but the level of user experience in the app is a nightmare ahahah. The buttons not always enable/disable as they should, and perhaps they shouldn't be buttons but toolbars, and a few more bits that really make this a nightmare from the user pov :)

This needs a full refactor in terms of code, and some thinking regarding UI. So not really sure :)

I have two more features to implement, which are giving properties to a tile in the scene, and define floor/platform lines (which I think can speed up collision with floor and platforms, have to do some tests to confirm it) and then I'll think about it.

António
stefano
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Re: Scene Editor

Post by stefano »

Also the current monochrome sprite editor is terrible on the first impact and not user friendly.
e.g. the save option has a different effect depending on the sprite currently in the edit page!

nevertheless it is much more powerful than expected
Timmy
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Posts: 186
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:18 pm

Re: Scene Editor

Post by Timmy »

Looking at this thread makes me want to make an editor too. Normally I only use an editor to convert png files to sprites and tiles instead, but maybe there is a need for one.
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