Map GFX contest
This article is dedicated to the official FIFE graphics contest that took place from the first of June 2007 till the first of August 2007. Our aim was to create an example map with the graphics that were send in and bundle it with the 2007.2 release.
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Idea behind the contest
- 3 Timeframe
- 4 Categories of the contest
- 5 Requirements for the graphics
- 5.1 Dimensions
- 5.2 Geometry
- 5.2.1 Suggested tile geometry
- 5.2.2 Alternative tile geometry #1
- 5.2.3 Fallout tile geometry
- 5.2.4 Your custom tile geometry
- 5.3 File formats
- 5.4 Alpha channel
- 5.5 Filesize
- 5.6 License
- 6 Ways to send in the package
- 7 Prize
- 8 Organisation
Idea behind the contest
The aim of the contest is to bring in the community into the FIFE development. The example map would be a great way to show the current status of the engine without needing to have one of the two Fallout games installed. Even more important it shows how flexible FIFE is and would be a great starting point for modding efforts by the community.
The contest will take place from the first of June 2007 till the first of August 2007; so you'll have around two full months to take part.
Categories of the contest
There are four different categories for the contest. Every participant is allowed to send in graphics for every category but you can only win the prize if the requirements for this category are met. E.g. if you send in floor tiles, you'll need to send in at least a dozen different ones, otherwhise the contribution will not be considered for the prize by the jury. If you're just participating for fun, you're free to ignore these requirements.
Create at least a dozen of different floor tiles. You should create at least twelve different tiles, that means transition tiles (e.g. a transition from sand to gras) does not count to the required twelve tiles. We really appreciate if you send in transition tiles too, but a tileset that just consists of transition tiles does not help us as much as completely different terrain tiles.
Create at least a dozen of different roof tiles.
Create at least a dozen of different map objects. There are basically two different types of map objects:
- Static objects (e.g. walls, a trash can, a table, etc.)
- Animated objects (e.g. doors, lockers, a burning barrel, etc.)
While you'll surely need to invest more time for animated objects, they do often turn out to be far more impressing than static ones. Therefore it's quite likely that the jury will favour well-done animated objects over also well-done static ones :-)
Create at least one animated character with walk animations for 8 different directions (N, NE, E, SE, S, SW, W, NW).
Requirements for the graphics
Free choice. Though very small or very huge tiles, objects and characters apparently don't make much sense.
Geometries are basically just relevant if you're taking part in the floor or roof tiles category. The geometry will decide how the tiles will look like and how they will fit together if you place them on a FIFE map. In theory you can use whatever geometry you like as long as the tiles line up together. However we offer some suggestions for possible tile geometries to ease your work.
Suggested tile geometry
The probably best tile geometry is one that has a diamond-shape and uses dimensions that can be further divided by two. This way you can use an object grid that is four times as small as the tile grid (tiles: 160 * 96 px; objects: 40 * 24 px).
<geometry> <id>2</id> <type>RECTANGULAR</type> <size><x>160</x><y>96</y></size> <!-- We use x/2 & y/2 as transform values to get real diamond-shaped tiles --> <transform><x>80</x><y>48</y></transform> </geometry>
Alternative tile geometry #1
This tile geometry was used for official_map.xml, the demo map that shipped with the 2007.1 release. One issue of this tile geometry is that you'll run into issues with finding a suitable geometry for the object layer. Using this geometry is possible but it'll give you headaches if you add objects that need to line up later (e.g. walls or fences). Therefore we advise to stick to the suggested geometry shown above!
<geometry> <id>2</id> <type>RECTANGULAR</type> <size><x>126</x><y>96</y></size> <!-- We use x/2 & y/2 as transform values to get real diamond-shaped tiles --> <transform><x>63</x><y>48</y></transform> </geometry>
Fallout tile geometry
This tile geometry was used by the developers of Fallout 1 & 2. We feel that diamond-shaped tiles offer some advantages over the rather strange tile geometry of the first two Fallout parts and therefore advise to stick to the suggested tile geometry.
<geometry> <id>2</id> <type>RECTANGULAR</type> <size><x>80</x><y>36</y></size> <!-- We use 48 and 24 as transform values. See the geometry scheme for an explanation. --> <transform><x>48</x><y>24</y></transform> </geometry>
Your custom tile geometry
In theory you can also use a custom tile geometry for your graphics; as long the tiles line up together, there should be no issues. Some examples of possible geometries are:
- Square-shaped tiles
- Hexagon-shaped tiles
If you're not sure if the tile geometry you want to use is suited for the contest, feel free to contact any developer on the development IRC channel for an advice to avoid wasting time on troublesome geometries.
<!-- Tile geometry for square shaped tiles --> <geometry> <id>4</id> <type>RECTANGULAR</type> <size> <x>96</x> <y>96</y> </size> <!-- Transform values aren't needed for square-shaped tiles as they are identical to the size values in case they're not set. --> </geometry>
Send in your graphics as PNG files. You'll need to bundle all single graphics into an archive together. Possible archive formats are TAR (no need to gzip or bzip2 PNG files as they won't compress well), ZIP, RAR and the 7zip format.
You should use an alpha channel in your graphics for transparency. Although FIFE might support an own color keying system later, we don't know if this feature will ship with the 2007.2 release. Therefore you're on the safe side with using an alpha channel.
There are no file size restrictions for single graphics. But if your graphics bundled together excess 2 megabyte, you should upload the package at a freehost like sendspace.com and just add a link to the package at the wiki.
It is NOT allowed to send in commercial content or content that is derived from commercial content, even if the content is considered to be abandonware. You can use assets that are public domain or other content that is released under a license that allows derived works and redistribution.
However you'll need to state the source if you're sending in graphics that are based on the work of other people. It's also not allowed to send in graphics that are based on the contest contributions of other participants even if they use a license that does allow derived works! If we find any contest applications that violate these rules, the responsible participant will be banned from the contest and can't win the prize therefore. Please play fair :-)
You'll need to decide for one of the creative commons licenses for your contest contribution: http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/
If you don't care about license issues, FIFE will assume that the graphics have been released under creative commons v3.0 Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike.
Ways to send in the package
Upload them to the wiki and create an entry for your contribution on the Map GFX contest contributions page. Packages that excess the total filesize of two megabytes need to be hosted at a free host and just the link should be posted at the corresponding wiki page.
The prize itself
FIFE programmer Phoku offers to code a feature, for the winner of the contest, that takes about 10 man hours to implement:
- "I would like to offer the implementation of a feature in fife at the request of the winner. It should be something that can be done in roughly 10 hours of continuous concentrated coding (which is quite a lot) at the time the GFX contest is finished. And of course it should be something reasonable." -- phoku @ the FIFE Mailing list
The jury will consist of the currently active developer. Possible jury members are:
The jury will just consider contributions that meet the mininum requirements for the category. E.g. you'll need to send in at least a dozen floor tiles to have a chance to win the prize. There will be just one first place and the best contribution that meets the requirements will win this prize. That means we won't favour any category over another one; every contribution, independent of the category, has the same chances to win the price. The jury will discuss the different contributions and will pick a winner after that.