Stages screen
Enter the screen by pressing [2], here is where you create the stages for your game.



First of all, stages do not mean "play", stages represent the diferent acts in your game, like stages with no "shooting" but usually used to tell a story, like the introduccion in Ghosts'n'Goblins.

There are 5 kind of stages: , , , and .

When you start a new project you automatically get 3 stages: , and , you only have one of each and cannot be moved or deleted, let's see what are they stand for.

this stage is for your presentation, logo or any typical warning message for the game, it only appears once at game start-up, you can disable it if you like, will see its properties latter.

this is where you should place the game title and where players go before they start a new game (by pressing any fire button), it can swap with stage if you want.

this is where the best ranking table appears, it can be disabled but then you won't get name score rank input. An empty ranking stage will show up as the image below, it can be initialized and it will generate a .hi file with the game top 8 players. You can customize the ranking table charsets (rank, names and scores) in the screen.



You can customize this stages in any way except that they are one screen (no background scrolling) and that you cannot set a hero actor in it.

There are other two stages, this are the stages and the stages.

this is where you should set your game story intro or anything you want to tell between game stages, you can have as many as you want.

is where you play the game, depending on the genre you have chosen it will have diferent properties and rules, we will se this later on this topic.

One thing you must know about stages is that they play in a successive manner, this means that the position in the list will indicate the playing position in the game (except for the stage that moves back to the stage), so an or stage will move to the next in the list once ended, y there are no stages left the game ends. You can move a stage position in the list by using [R] and [F] keys while pressing [SHIFT], remember that , and cannot be moved from their position.

Press [F1] in the program to see all keyboard shortcuts any time.
Notice, Title, Ranking and Intermissions stages
Without relying on how you customized this stages, they all have in common their properties.



sets the time (in seconds) to play this stage before moving to the next in the list, if is set to 0, player will need to press fire button to move. A disabled value is available for and stages.

sets the delay speed for the text, and you can set a sound effect for every time a letter pops out.

is the playing music for the stage, it will play once, if you want it to loop set a sound element directly onto the stage (we will see later how).
Game stages
Depending on the genre you have chosen, they will have diferent properties and rules.



for and games, sets the stage horizontal movement, right and/or left faced.

for and games, sets the stage vertical movement, up and/or down faced.

for games, you set the scrolling speed of the stage.

is the playing music for the stage, it will restart when ended, you can set a sound element directly onto the stage (we will see later how).


properties:

when we set a custom hero on a stage this doesn't mean that it will be the hero when playing the game, it depends on this property:
   •  uses the current hero set on the stage.
   •  uses the defined in the screen
   •  uses the last hero played in previous stage, it's to keep track of your hero between stages.

same as above but used after player gets killed on a stage.

(time) activates a countdown in seconds, when 0 is reached hero losses a life.


properties:

usually, when you finish a stage you want your hero to perform an automatic movement or animation, sets a for this.

sets the time (in seconds) to wait before the game moves to the next stage, but only after the stage as ended (and that is when a stage actor says so).

sets the tune that plays after the stage as ended.

Version 1.1 has two new parameters for each stage: and .



sets the background color of the stage in a RGB format.

sets a static tileset as background.

Version 1.2 adds 3 parameters to : , and
   • : a static tile on background
   • : the background moves proportionally to the stage size (only visile on stages), tile must be larger than 256x256 to see the effect.).
   • : sets a movement( and ) to the background tile, stops when edge is reached, usefull for example to show a map on intermissions like Ghosts'n'Goblins does.
   • : sets a movement( and ), background will loop, perfect for star fields..
Stage editor
The editor is the area in the right side of the stages screen, it's divided in 16*16 cells, each cell is 16*16 pixels, so this makes a 256*256 pixel area, or what is the same, the exact screen resolution for every game.



Only stages can be larger than a screen size, you can move arround the stage with [WASD] keys (keep [SHIFT] down to move faster), when the cursor is over the area it will show a tag indicating the edit mode you are in, it can be one of the following: , , , and . Use [Q] and [E] keys to change the edit mode.

this mode is for placing background tiles. To place a tile go to the screen [3], and select an area from a tile, go back [2] and place it anywhere on the stage. Press right-click to deselect the tile, and keep [SHIFT] down to delete a background cell from the stage. A stage is as large as the background that contains, or until an empty background row or column is reached, starting from the bottom-left corner.

this mode is for placing wall cells, ladders or specific collision events, use [Z] and [X] to change the selected event, that can be one of the following:

cell, actors with collisions enabled cannot go trough this cells.

cell, used only for games, actors can jump onto them vertically and trough them horizontally.

cell, used only for games, hero actors can climb a ladder cell.

cell, used only for games, hero actors can change their state when going trough them (like if your hero gets into water), also can be defined as a wall, so for example a tank hero can't go trough it, but a man hero can.

cell, hero automatically dies on collision.

cell, marks a checkpoint on the stage, if a hero reaches it, game will restart at this point on hero death. property on screen must be set to .

cell, an actor that collides with this cell will change its directon if it has its behaviour icon set to on.

cell, if your hero reaches this cell the stage will perform the ending event and will move to the next stage.


this mode is for placing actors on the stage. Use [Z] and [X] to select an actor or press [`](Key between ESC and TAB) to select it from a list. Actors will active when they get at the edge of the sight. A blinking black & white spot will indicate the origin of each actor.



Left-click to place an actor, if you move in any direction while placing an arrow will show up pointing the edge where the actor will start on the screen, also on games keep [SHIFT] pressed to set the actor start spot when the scroll reaches that point.

this mode is for writing texts on the stage. Use [Z] and [X] to select a charset and click on the stage to change to mode, this is like any text editor, you can also use the cursor keys to move the cursor Press [ESC] or right-click to exit mode. You can remove letters with a right-click over whem.

this mode is for placing sounds on the stage. Use [Z] and [X] to select a sound or press [`](Key between ESC and TAB) to select it from a list. Sound effects or tunes will play and loop when they get into sight, this is useful, for example, if you whant to change the music when reaching the end of a stage.

Press [TAB] to show/hide current mode elements.

Press [SPACE] to test the stage, note that the stage will always start centered on the nearest bottom-left hero set on the stage. On test mode press [TAB] to hide/show wall and events. In version 1.1 you also will see the bounding box for wall collisions (white) and hit collisions (red).