11 April 2010

Image Nightmares

Image Shack, where most of the images on this blog are stored, is proving to be unreliable. Half of the images don't load half of the time and even in my Image Shack folders it says "Thumbnail Not Available". Image Shack has been quite reliable in the past, but lately it's become progressively worse. I can understand downtime, but this is ridiculous! So now I have the onerous task of using another image host, transferring all of the images to another host, then changing locations in each entry. And there are over 200 images! Ugh!

I had also created a plethora of RMXP windowskins the other day, some of which were converted from a few of the RMVX ones I did. But due to an error in transferring them onto DVD, I lost them. Good job there's a backup somewhere; experience can be a hardnut teacher! So I'll be attempting that again soon.

If "bad" things come in threes, the third hasn't happened yet. Fingers crossed! But I also believe in "third time lucky", regardless if it's bad or not, so whatever the outcome it's going to work out in the end.
05 April 2010

Frequently Asked Questions #1

These are answers to some of the simpler questions about RPG Maker I'm asked on a regular basis. Some of these have been taken from Yahoo! Answers. Many of them have been taken from IM'd questions or targeted keywords at Statcounter. You can find a full list of FAQs here.

Are there any online versions of RPG Maker XP or VX?

There aren't any online versions of Enterbrain's RPG Makers, although there are two websites that I know of that boast emulated RPG Makers, thus:
  • My Game Builder - A fabulous website where you can create games, including RPG Maker type games. In addition to being able to create maps and events, you can also use the built-in editor to create or edit graphics. They have regular competitions in different categories, not just RPGs. Highly recommended if you have a few hours to kill. (You do need to sign up - it's free - to create the games, but not to play them.)
  • Flash RPG Maker - You would expect that something on the Newgrounds site would be good, and this one shows great promise. However, it fails miserably for one reason: it's buggy as hell! Not recommended!

How do I change the default font?

To change the default font, which will apply to all windows, in the Window_Base class, directly beneath Super(), place the following:

Font.default_name = "Times New Roman"

The font for all windows will now be Times New Roman. Bear in mind, though, that just because you might have a fancy font for your game, that doesn't mean that everyone else will have it and it will invariably generate an error message or the text won't show up in any of the windows.

To rectify this, we will need to set up an array variable to list the available fonts, including alternatives if a particular font isn't available. To do this, place the following outside the Window_Class, i.e. just above the class Window_Base < Window or in a separate module:

FONT_NAME = ["Arial", "Verdana", "Times New Roman"]

Then under Super(), place:

Font.default_name = FONT_NAME

This will then go through the list until it finds the installed font, starting with the first name.

How do I change the default windowskin?

Windowskins are imported into the Graphics/Windowskins folder and then placed into a "Cache". The default windowskin is then set in the Database (under "System").

If, however, you want to change the windowskin during the game without affecting the default one, you can use the following:

self.windowskin = RPG::Cache.windowskin("Windowskin_Name")

where "Windowskin_Name" is the name of the windowskin to be used. This is placed under the def initialize, right under the Bitmap setup. You can use this simple method with each instance of a Window, with each one having a different Windowskin.

What is RMVX "batch entry"?

By default message boxes allow only four lines of text. If you check "Batch Entry", you'll be able to exceed the four lines and RMVX will automatically create separate text boxes for you, each containing four lines, which saves you from manually clicking on "Show Text" each time.
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