[WF-General] Entity movement constraints, animation and the mode property

Alistair Riddoch alriddoch at googlemail.com
Mon May 11 08:02:36 PDT 2009


How much use does Ember currently make of the various different uses
of the "mode" property?

This property currently feels very overloaded and ambiguous as its use
has changed an mutated over time. In the old 2d client days it was
used to directly access the various named animation sequences
character sprites used. As server simulation and terrain moved into
the third dimension we started using it to indicate if an entity sits
on the surface of the terrain or not, then gradually extended it to
cover other ways in which position might be constrained, or otherwise
modified automatically by either client or server.

If all current uses are to be covered I think we should break it down
into at least two properties, and while we are doing an overhaul of
this we should probably revisit the requirements.

1) What do clients really need in order to be able to get animations
right? I am guessing a property giving the current motion type?

2) Independent of the animation of the model, what is the best way to
express the current position constraints of an entity? Tracking the
surface is going to be one of the most common cases, but other
important ones include:
 a) flying linearly through the air (birds, flying carpets etc,
including stationary floating objects)
 b) projectile flight through the air (missiles, falling characters)
 c) moving freely through water (fish, diving things)
 d) tracking the surface of the water (surface swimmer characters, ducks)
 e) embedded in the terrain. (buried treasure, palisade stakes)
 f) pinned to another entity (Tree houses)

Alistair Riddoch
alriddoch at googlemail.com

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