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Tutorial - 'Visibility Meters' by ATARI

An item about RPGMaker 2000 posted on


How to create simple but effective visibility meter in your RPG!


Hi folks! It’s ATARI again!

This time I’m going to talk about how to make a visibility meter system for your RPG!

Things that you will need to know to use this tutorial:

1. Fork Options
2. Switches
3. Pictures
4. Labels

You will also need an image-editing program like idraw3.

So what exactly do I mean when I say a “visibility meter?” Well, in games like thief and splinter cell (2 smashing games), there are meters that show how visible you are, putting in factors like how hidden you are in the darkness, or how well blended in you are with the scenery and such of the place that you are in. Both of which are stealth games, being able to know how visible you are, is very important, especially when you have to sneak past guards and complete your objectives without detection. This tutorial is about how to make a similar system in your RPG.

First things first. Open up rm2k and create a new map, being the smallest size possible. Make the whole map filled up with walkable tile, (for example, grass on one of the rtp chipsets.). Now on the map, create a wall, that is passable from both sides that takes up about half the length of the width of the map. Next, make a snow patch somewhere on the side of the map. Next, make a black tile place somewhere else on the map. Here is an example picture if you haven’t quite gotten the description I’ve stated.

Next thing, you have to do is do a bit of image editing. First create a grass tile that looks like it’s been lit up, and then a tile that looks like it is in the dark all in the lower layer of the chipset image you are using for your map. Then, make a street lamp in the upper layer of the chipset image you are using for your map. (You can save it as a different map then.) Now place the street lamp somewhere on the map, and the shadows behind the wall. Here is an example. (Ignore my 15 second job of creating the tiles. Spend a bit of time to make them nice.)

Finally, you need to create a visibility meter picture. This doesn’t need to be anything fancy. For my example, I’ve just created 3 separate pictures, each displaying the different levels of stealth, or you could create a splinter cell style one. For this tutorial, I am using something like I have created below. (once again, ignore my artwork)

Next, create an autostart event on your map. In this auto start event, have it set the screen tint down. Put all 4 bars down to 5. Then change the screen tint change time to as low as it can go, and uncheck the box that tells you to wait until it’s done. Hit the ok button. Next, below that, make a new switch, name it, and turn on that switch. Make a new page in the event, have its starting condition be “push key,” and have its switch condition be the new switch that you just created. Put your starting hero point on this map. (You can move it back to wherever later) If you were to save and hit the play button right now, it might look something like this.

Next, create 3 new switches. Name them, “StealthLvl1,” “StealthLv2,” and “StealthLv3.” Now create a new event. Have this event’s starting condition be, “On Hero Touch.” Put the event right where the shadow tile starts, (where it switches from grass to shadow.) Make it turn on switch “StealthLv1,” and turn off switches “StealthLv2” and “StealthLv3.” Copy and paste these events all in the perimeter of the shadow tiles. The on the outside perimeter of the shadow tiles, create a new “On Hero Touch” event that turns on switch “StealthLv2” and turns off switches, “StealthLv1” and “StealthLv3.” Copy and paste this event around the perimeter of the outside of the shadow tiles. Next, create another new event, this on one of the light tiles. Have it turn on the switch “StealthLv3” and turn off switches, and turn off the switches “StealthLv2” and “StealthLv1.” Copy and paste this event in all the light tiles. The take the Event that switches “stealthLv2” on, and copy and paste it around the light events. So here is what happens. When you are in the shadows, your stealth level is 1, when you are in the dark, but not shadowed, your stealth level is 2. When you are light up, your stealth level is 3. So the lower the number, the better stealth level you have. Save what you have so far.

Next, create a new parrell process event. In this parrell process, create a new label and put it at the top. Next, make a new fork condition command that asks the following. “IF switch “StealthLv1” is on, then,” have it erase pictures 1, 2, 3, and display the visibility meter picture as picture one, that represents when your stealth is at it’s lowest. Wherever you want to put your picture on the map is up to you, just make sure that it doesn’t move with map. Preferably, put it in the bottom right corner. (I like it that way anyway.) In the ELSE case for the fork condition, make a new fork condition that says, “IF switch “StealthLv2” is on then,” have it erase pictures 1, 2, 3, and display the visibility meter for that shows it in the middle. In the ELSE case of that then, have it do another fork condition asking about “StealthLv3” and doing the picture stuff once again. At the END case at the bottom, have it wait 0.1 seconds, and the put in a “Go Back To Label” command, and put in the label number of the label you put at the top of the parrell process event that you just created. Save.

So that is all that there is to setting up a system that tells you how visible you are on the map! That is all for part 1 of the tutorial. Remember, that this is also just a basic way of creating a visibility meter. You can fancy it up however you like.

“Even The Greatest Gamers Were n00bs.”