In the incubator week Arjen (thanks Arjen!) worked on the minimap feature. It was a bit tougher then anticipated, but the end-result is very nice!
Brief history about my experience with the minimap / radar
Every since I played Dune 2 I wanted to build my own RTS game (which I did, twice). I always found the minimap a very handy feature. Since I’ve used it quite a lot I want the experience for every player to be flawless.
When hacking away at Dune 2 I noticed the map sizes were always a power of two (32×32 or 64×64). The minimap itself had a max of 64×64 pixels, so each tile would be 1 pixel on the map. If you played on a 32×32 map, the tiles would simply be pixels of 2 by 2.Dune 2 in action with 32×32 minimap
How we wanted the minimap to work
We had the following requirements
- Ability to render very big maps (4096×4096) in the minimap area
- Ability to handle ‘awkward’ map sizes (ie, not power of two)
- Ability to handle very small maps (32×32)
- Minimap would be available only after building a RADAR
- You would need sufficient power to see anything on the minimap
See the minimap in action here:
What it looks like with various map sizes64×64128×128
For now we’re satisfied, but we already have a few ideas to improve further:
- add the ability to jump to a ‘bigger minimap’
- a zooming possibility
- gradually decreasing minimap with low power? (introduce more ‘static’ ? slower ‘update rate’ ?)
Like what we are doing? Please share! Or leave a comment. Thanks!
Special thanks to Arjen van der Ende for his time and dedication to make this feature into reality during the Incubator week!