Author Topic: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor  (Read 6341 times)

Offline ohartenstein23

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[Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« on: October 26, 2020, 12:26:44 am »
I'm making available an alpha release of a map editor for OXCE that I've been working on! This tool is intended for helping modders and other interested community members to make small-scale changes on existing MAP/RMP files in a mod from within OXCE - for large scale map creation the MapView tool maintained by kevL is a better choice.

Attached to this post are 64-bit Windows and Ubuntu 18.04 builds of OXCE with the map editor included - any other operating systems would need to be compiled from my source code, which can be found on GitHub. It is currently built on top of OXCE 6.9.4. Any updates to OXCE or bug fixes for the editor will have to wait until the next feature release of the editor. Installation is done in the same way as for OXCE, and I would recommend keeping the installation of the editor separate from the OXCE version you use for regular play/modding.

*** IMPORTANT CAVEAT: This is an incomplete feature and not a part of official OXCE releases. Do NOT bother Meridian with bug reports or requests regarding this map editor. ***

Extensive documentation of the editor and its features is contained in the build downloads below. For the features currently available and the kinds of feedback I'd appreciate on this build, I'm including a bit from the first page of that documentation:

Quote
This is the documentation for an alpha release version (05 February 2021) of the Map Editor for Open X-Com Extended (OXCE). The alpha release versions are intended for demonstration and testing of the basic functionality of an in-game map editor. Feedback on the user interface and functionality are appreciated as are bug reports, but bug fixing support will likely be slow and tied to new feature releases. Please read through the following list of included and planned features before making suggestions for further development. It is also not intended to replace MapView but rather to provide supplementary map editing with minimal setup outside installation of OXCE. The primary features in this release are

  • Editing of maps included in the currently loaded set of mods
  • Creating new maps from the terrains defined in the currently loaded set of mods
  • Editing single tiles at a time by adding, changing, or removing objects within the tile
  • Editing single AI nodes at a time by adding, moving, changing, and removing them and their links
  • Switching between tile and AI node editing modes
  • Undoing and redoing single tile/node edits
  • Saving edited .MAP and .RMP files in the current OXCE user folder
  • Sample ruleset for implementation of the edited .MAP and .RMP files in the openxcom.log file
  • Opening the main Map Editor Menu for creating/selecting a new map to edit directly from the Editor Interface.
  • Editing multiple tiles/nodes at a time by both rectangular selection and paintbrush-style selection tools
  • Copying, cutting, and pasting selections of multiple tiles/nodes at once
  • Find and replace tools for searching and editing tile and node content
  • Searching of text lists in the Map Editor Menu

The following features are planned for future releases:

  • Option to attempt to match MCDs across maps when pasting tiles
  • Creating new maps with custom terrains from a selection of terrain data sets (.MCD files) from the currently loaded set of mods
  • Direct loading of .MAP files from a specified directory using a supplementary file to indicate which terrain data sets to use
  • Find and replace tools for searching and editing tile and node content
  • Resizing maps
  • Improved Map Editor main menu
  • Testing map being edited in the battlescape before saving and importing changes due to tile destruction
« Last Edit: February 05, 2021, 07:49:09 pm by ohartenstein23 »

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2020, 12:27:26 am »
« Last Edit: December 20, 2020, 04:40:43 am by ohartenstein23 »

Offline kevL

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2020, 03:21:06 am »
wow. good luck o23

Offline Finnik

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2020, 03:39:43 am »
This is a great thing to have! Please, keep moving with this amazing tool! Here is my first impression:
1) It is much better to have in-game rendering, rather than its simulation with map editor. Working with this I will know for sure that my map would look like the thing I'm currently working on.
2) Having an in-game resolution really helps! It is much easier to detect small mistakes on the map when looking from a game perspective, especially when working on a big map.
3) It runs way more smooth. Currently, I'm working with a huge mapblock (50x70x5) and map editors lags kills me. In your editor it's perfect. Tomorrow I will proceed with your editor, it's way faster and definitely much enjoyable!
4) In-game feel - when working in the map editor I am "working". I love modding and level design in particular, but it still. I was not working for a log time, just tried a few things. But all that feeling that is created by using vanilla-style UI and game rendering makes me feel more like I'm DMing a D&D session and I am in process of set up a dungeon on the table from tiles, and it is a part of a game we are playing with my friends. Hard to explain, but I like your environment much better than working in window forms.
5) Browsing mod's maps. It still not perfect, you know, there could be some more additions to that within terms of UX, but it's already better - you just choose a mod and the map, instead of those additional manipulations with editor settings I always hated.
6) God bless you, Undo button!!!11

It is a great progress for an alpha, I'm sure you have some things in your backlog and I really hope you will continue this amazing project!

UPD:
I can confirm the first impression. Tho mapmaking is not the most critical part of my current project I'm working on, it's still important. So I have to add - handy UI and much faster placing of new tiles in the general workflow for me compensate lack of filling and cut/copy/paste functions. It's obvious, that they would be very welcome, but now this editor is my main mapping tool and after a few days of working there I don't want to return back to MapView 2. All my experience is recorded (tho, it's all in Russian, sorry). The process is much more enjoyable, I guys have to try it, it's like some magic opens when you get the flow of it because in-game rendering feels like playing, especially when the shadow of the upper floor is calculated!

Pls, keep moving with this awesome project!
« Last Edit: November 01, 2020, 01:47:23 am by Finnik »

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2020, 10:44:28 pm »
wow. good luck o23

Thanks kevL!

snip

Glad you're enjoying using it Finnik, and thanks for the feedback and bugreports on discord.

I'm releasing an update with the ability to select multiple tiles and nodes at a time for editing, check the first post for new downloads. There are some new user options too that go along with the selections and based on feedback I've received.

It also includes a fix for UFO doors opening and remaining open when placing them where a tile was previously. This was just a cosmetic bug, the doors would be closed properly if the map was loaded into the battlescape.

Next up on the feature list is copy/cut/paste, probably followed by find/replace buttons. At that point, most of the features for the editor itself will be done and I'll move on to better file management support.

Offline Finnik

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2020, 11:06:20 pm »
And now we are talking! Just tried it fast - feel super cool! I'd suggest posting somewhere a list of changes and new features that update brings - for example, we can now select, and use Shift to add to selection and ctrl to deselect - users can miss it with updates. Also, I can't find what Shift+Ctrl does.

Can we use Esc to clear the selection? Like if there is a selection Esc clears it and if there is no selection - it opens Options?

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2020, 12:06:14 am »
Guess I could add a list of changes as I release them in this thread. Here's what the latest release brought:

  • Drag-select with the mouse to pick multiple tiles/nodes for editing
  • Modifying how you select tiles/nodes with Shift and Control keys
  • Fix for UFO doors opening and remaining open (just a cosmetic bug)
  • User options for drag-select modes
  • User options for setting the maximum size of the tile selection panel
  • User option to close the tile selection panel after you click

You can clear the selection by left-clicking outside the map. I'd rather not overload the Esc button too much, but I can add another hotkey to clear the selection, probably default 'X' for now.

Control + Shift together only selects tiles within the area you've already selected. Think opposite of what Control alone does - it won't affect tiles outside the previous selection.

Offline efrenespartano

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #7 on: November 02, 2020, 01:13:52 am »
I don't have as much real feedback as Finnik has (most because I'm still playing around with it and I'm quite happy with the current build, my suggestions are already on the to-do list anyways), but I've been promoting your tool on my dev team and they love it so far. We all are rooting for you and your project! Looking forward to seeing more of it!

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #8 on: November 06, 2020, 01:04:00 am »
Glad you and your team have been enjoying using it.

Another release is ready, this time cut/copy/paste functions have been added. Again the first post has the files to download. The new features for this release are:

  • Press Control + A to select everything, X to clear selection
  • Press Delete to remove selected tiles/nodes
  • Cut, copy, paste functions added
  • Pasting tiles respects selection of mode button and tile part filter
  • Paste clipboard persists when loading maps to allow copying from one map to another
  • Option to select undone/redone tiles/nodes
  • Option to select pasted nodes/tiles

Offline Finnik

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2020, 10:16:46 pm »
So cool!
Code: [Select]
Option to attempt to match MCDs across maps when pasting tiles

Resizing maps

Testing map being edited in the battlescape before saving and importing changes due to tile destruction

Those are the most promising currently, resizing is quite a needed tool, I already had to return to MapView to do it there. I would also welcome shading change directly in the editor to see online how to place lights (and it should respect OXCE lightning model). Also, it would be nice if not editing, but just reading MCD properties.

Offline Ethereal

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2020, 11:43:26 am »
It is a pity that there is only a win64 version. Well, I'll wait for the win32 version.

Offline ValeriusPaipikus

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #11 on: November 10, 2020, 02:09:54 am »
Very well...

Offline ohartenstein23

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #12 on: February 05, 2021, 07:56:20 pm »
A new release is ready, the first post has the files to download. The new features for this release are:

  • Finding/replacing tiles and nodes
  • Quick search through the maps/terrains in the main menu
  • Possible fix for crashes when loading a new map with a selection of tiles or nodes active
  • Fixed pressing cut or delete multiple times with nodes selected continuing to decrease the number of active nodes incorrectly
  • Fixed number of active nodes being incorrect when loading a map
  • Fixed linking exit connections within the same map when loading
  • Fixed node information panel displaying wrong type, switching flying and small units
  • Fixed right-clicks adding to path-style drag selections
  • Fixed display of node spawn priority not being able to go to 10
  • Possible fix for right-clicks on map happening through the MCD selection panel
  • Fix for keyboard shortcuts de-selecting tile filters causing the map to scroll until mouse movement

As part of the fix for displaying nodes, you may have to check any maps you've made with the tool where you limited nodes to flying units only or small units only. The bug switched the display of those two values in the code, so you may have to switch them. Fortunately the new find and replace can help fix that!

Offline Finnik

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #13 on: February 05, 2021, 11:11:51 pm »
Woo, cool! Thank you!

Offline 4ky

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Re: [Documentation] [Feedback] Map Editor
« Reply #14 on: July 27, 2021, 04:52:30 pm »
TFTD maps cannot be opened. Crash with error: "Sprite Set MapEditorIcons not found". Tried varies version of TFTD - no results.
If this error is resolved, please provide a way to download the latest versions. Or explain what I am doing wrong. Attached a log file to the message.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2021, 07:09:27 pm by 4ky »