AuthorTopic: Terrain tiles techniques  (Read 5137 times)

Offline Kazuya Mochu

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Terrain tiles techniques

on: February 23, 2015, 01:52:32 pm
Hello guys,

one thing that has always hunted me was the issue of terrain tiles, and the fact that its very hard to find "Techniques" or "Methods" or creating them.

in this image I have two of the most common ways that I make terrain tiles. I usually prefer the bottom method as it saves more world space for the game elements to be on, but the top method actually allows for more creative transitions of the terrain.



so, do these methods even have a name? at all?

I'd like to know more about it, technically speaking, but there's seems to be hardly any info on it.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2015, 04:50:49 pm by Kazuya Mochu »
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Offline Night

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #1 on: February 23, 2015, 02:27:05 pm
I don't see any difference in terms of tile usage, you still have corner tiles in both methods used, the only difference is the way it looks and I guess collision, with the second method allowing for more area to move on. Personally I prefer the first method because it gives a more natural transition.
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Offline Kazuya Mochu

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #2 on: February 23, 2015, 02:30:25 pm
well visually I can still go to the vertical cliff and make a specific tile for the grass at the foot of the cliff, just to visually make it more interesting. Still, the issue of the colisions and usable space remains.
I just wonder if either method as a name at all.
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Offline CelioHogane

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #3 on: February 23, 2015, 03:16:13 pm
I really find that both of this kind of tiles work pretty well combined depending in what are you trying to do.

I mean, if you are going to do a cliff you should use both of them, ┐Right? XD

Offline Kazuya Mochu

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #4 on: February 23, 2015, 04:07:53 pm
I've found some info on some naming, and this is what it referred to:



Still non of these look like the style I used on the bottom example, on the first image I posted, so I'll keep looking a bit more.
I guess its more a matter of artistic choice than I thought.

I apologize for these images not being in pixel art, but I just want to explain my self quick.
« Last Edit: February 23, 2015, 04:51:07 pm by Kazuya Mochu »
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Offline Kazuya Mochu

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #5 on: February 23, 2015, 05:31:20 pm
Well apparently there is another one: block tiles.
in this case the tile is accessible for a specific direction, represented here by light brown, or not at all (dark brown).
this way I can make the transition graphics on the edges, save space, and not have to deal with collisions, which can be sorted in code by figuring out if a certain movement is "legal" in a tile. Anyway, I'm not the one to talk about programming.

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Offline Tidbit

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #6 on: February 23, 2015, 05:59:08 pm
Well apparently there is another one: block tiles.
in this case the tile is accessible for a specific direction, represented here by light brown, or not at all (dark brown).
this way I can make the transition graphics on the edges, save space, and not have to deal with collisions, which can be sorted in code by figuring out if a certain movement is "legal" in a tile. Anyway, I'm not the one to talk about programming.


To be honest, I think the first method you showed is the best out of all of these so far. You could easily make collision a sinch by moving the transition from ground to cliff close to the edge of the tile as opposed to spaced further away. I've never really given these "techniques" any specific names as I just call them the kind of camera angle I'll be using: isometric, 3/4s, side, or top down.

Offline Kazuya Mochu

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #7 on: February 23, 2015, 06:05:02 pm
But I have the same problem. I've never given them any name, or heard any name for them, until today.
these 4 "techniques" are all for top down perspective. So that's what I was confused about. I know that in isometric perspective, it is of some importance where you slice your tile. or if it is going to have an odd number of tiles. I remember reading about it somewhere but there was no name associated with it.
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Offline wzl

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #8 on: February 23, 2015, 08:12:53 pm
Well apparently there is another one: block tiles.

This approach has some interesting ways to vary the whole tileset up, works mostly in construction and not necessarily in natural environments.
Check the halfway editor for some insight:


Drawback is a lot of tile overhead.

Otherwise i'd guess it depends pretty much on the perspective and artstyle you're going for. Sometimes it's always influenced by gamedesign decisions (like where collision needs to go).
« Last Edit: February 24, 2015, 06:12:58 am by PixelPiledriver »

Offline Cyangmou

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Re: Terrain tiles techniques

Reply #9 on: February 23, 2015, 08:26:19 pm
For my own terms:
first one you have in your opening post are "conical" cliffs
second one are "straight" cliffs


While there is indeed not that much difference if the south facing side is just 1 tile high, it suddenly changes if you have the south walls with a height of 2 or more tiles.
Especially for intersections of the cubical forms the cliffs create the conical solution is a lot more complex and tile-heavy than the straight variation.

Conical tends to look nicer and also works with simpler collision tools (you just have to set a tile to passable/impassable and don't have to consider all 4 edges)

But after all I won't say there is one solution better than the other.
While the conical one might look nicer for cliffs, the straight one usually works much nicer for architecure like houses.

Guess noone bothered so far to give tiles or small set of tiles names - at least as far as I know.
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