256-color priority

jelleghys I don't know if anybody has thought of it (maybe it already exists), but wouldn't it be great if we could use 256 colors instead of 16 for the priority screens? I've seen you playing around with the 256c-palette, so maybe it's possible to make a 256c-pri-screen. It would have lots of advantages, each line would have its own priority.

- just an idea -
Kon-Tiki That would indeed be useful, but aren't there some problems with it? If every line has it's own colour, you would have to draw every line of your priority screen in a different colour (or have I misunderstanded you?)
jelleghys Everything would be just the same, but some problems would disappear:
Maybe you have seen the priority-tutorial Juha Terho made. When your ego walks just behind an object, it must have a lower priority, otherwise it will wake over the object and the 3D-illusion won't work. In a 16c-priorityband, you must place your objects on specific positions or you must draw some control-line around the objects. With a 256c-pri-band, you won't have to deal with those problems...
Kon-Tiki So what you say comes to this: If you have accidently positioned an object between two priority lines, in 256c, you don't have to search where you should change the priority colour, 1 colour would then be enough.

That is wonderful! This problem occurs to me in almost every picture ;D
jelleghys Well, yes. You've got it!
It may be useful for other things too, there could be more then 3 control lines:

  • 1 color for the unconditional barrier: like it is now
  • Several colors for conditional barriers: so you won't have to work with all the different positions your ego or object can have. The ignore.blocks should be adjusted though: ie: ignore.blocks(object,no_of_block_color);
  • Several colors for signal barriers: like above: no positioning-problems...
  • Several colors for the water: different colors for different depths

    I hope you'll understand what I mean...

    [glow=red,2,300]BTW: Betekom besta ni! Das allemaal Bgijnendijk! ;D ;D :P :P[/glow]
  • Steven Melenchuk Well, put it this way:
    Since the screens are 168x160, you'd only need to dedicate 160 colors to actual 3D priority stuff.
    This leaves 256-160 = 96 colors left for everything else.
    That's more than enough to actually have an SCI-style set of control colors to give the scripters something to work with... ;)
    Joe I think it's 160x168...
    Steven Melenchuk ...oops, my bad.
    Well, that still leaves 256-168 = 88 colors :P
    Brian_Provinciano It wouldn't be too hard for me to hack AGI to support it, as I have a lot of experience with that, and it would be even easier to modify nagi, but then we'd need to create new tools. We could edit picedit, but still. It's more work than it's worth. It's easy to do games with only 14 bars. Besides, SCI1 breaks this limit allowing you do position the bars at any position you want. With that ability, 14 is more than enough.
    sonneveld v3 agi games allow you to squash the lines closer together, if that's any consolation :)

    I'm pretty sure that agi is stuck with 4 bits for the priority though.. it's used an awful lot thoughout the interpreter and I'd hate to go through them all.

    - Nick
    Rainer Whats the point? Do you really draw pictures that detailed that you need 256 priority layers? Come on the resolution is 160x168. I dont think games in 640x480 even have that many priority layers. I get by perfectly fine using the existing 14. Goldrush, possibly the most detailed game gets by fine with 14. What can you do with 256 that you cant already do with 14? I just dont think its worth the time.

    With the problem of placing things' baseline on the bottom of the priority band, that isnt actually a problem. You should know that if ego has the same priority of an object, then it appears in front. So, if you had something with a priority of 12 at the top or anywhere in that priority band, and ego was standing infront, then ego appears in front.

    The only advantage of having more priority bands, is you can make objects smaller in depth. eg if the current minimum depth of an object is say 10, then you could have it as small as 1, but in a resolution so small, it isnt really needed.
    Kon-Tiki I'm starting to get the hang of those priorities, and I must say that I've never used all the 16 colours in one picture (and there are already a lot of them, too :D). You don't need more than 16 'cause you don't use more.
    Also, using them seems to be a matter of counting too. Counting till max. 16 is fast, but when you have to count to max. 256 each time you have to find the right colour, it'll take even longer before a picture is finished.
    It seems that, when you get more experienced with the priorities, you see that 256 is indeed more trouble than it's worth (not only for making, but also for using.)


    (Hmmm, seems like I have switched sides ::))
    sonneveld Would it help if there was a sort of "walk" option.. like in sci studio? So you can quickly walk an ego around to get a feel of the priorities?

    or maybe even let the mouse pointer turn into an ego, and you can only move the cursor where the priorities let you.

    - Nick
    mr-t Priorities are pretty easy once you get the idea of everything being a big grid into your head.