Choosing an Environment
The first thing you probably want to do is to choose the level background you would like to use. You can change this later, but often times working with the appropriate background helps set the mood of the level you are designing. To choose a background, look on the top part of the palette where is has “Background” with a dropdown menu next to it. The game defaults to Alien Vista when creating new sets, so Alien Vista should be showing in the dropdown box. Select the dropdown arrow and select another environment.
You will notice that the palette changes to match the background (or environment) you chose. However, any brick you may have previously laid will not change.
Choosing a Brick and Placing It on the Screen
Bricks are arranged into 10 different palettes; a different one for each environment type. You will notice that some bricks (change brick, floating sphere etc.) appear on multiple palettes. This is because they appear across all environment types.
Hovering your mouse over the brick on the palette will cause a tool tip to be displayed to tell you what kind of brick it is. Normal, Power up, Ball Deflector, Change brick etc.
To place a brick on your level, simply left click on any brick in the palette. Now, move the cursor into the play field, and right click anywhere you would like to place a brick of that type. Each time you right click in the play field you will generate a new instance of that brick.
If you right click and keep the button pressed down, you can lay a large number of identical bricks at once. If you move the mouse from left to right you will see a wide swath of bricks being laid. Be careful, however, as nothing prevents you from laying bricks on top of each other and this is often times not what you want to do.
By default, the snap feature is checked. This will make it much easier to lay down bricks as they will ‘snap’ next to each other. When you are getting started we do not recommend that you uncheck this box, which is in the Options Menu. If you find yourself not wanting a brick to ‘snap’ it is better to temporarily override it by holding down the shift key as you move your brick.
NOTE: If you want to change a brick already on the playing field, you could delete the brick then place a new one in that spot. However, an easier method would be to select the brick you want to use and right click on the brick you want changed. It replaces the previous brick with the new one and keeps the scripting already plugged-into the old one!!!
NOTE: Another easy way to change a brick (or group of bricks) already on the playing field uses the scrolling wheel on the mouse. Just select the brick(s) you want to change, then use the scroll wheel to go through the bricks available in that environment. Keep in mind when you do this that you will only see "like" bricks when scrolling. For example, if you wanted to change a single hit brick to another single hit brick, then this method would work. However, if you wanted to change a single hit brick into a 3-hit brick, it would not work.
Any bricks you want to remove or delete from the playing field, simple select the brick using the left mouse button and either (1) hit the delete key on the keyboard; (2) while holding down the control key, depress “X”; or (3) select “Edit” from the palette menu then select the option “Cut”.
Moving Bricks Around On the Screen
Moving bricks on the screen when editing is something that continually happens until you get the bricks in just that right spot. It is easy to do; simple select the brick you want to move and either (1) while holding down the left mouse button move the brick to its new location; or (2) use the arrow keys on the keyboard.
To select a single brick, move the mouse until the pointer is over the brick you want to move and left click to select it. You’ll notice that an outline appears around the brick for a few seconds.
To select more than one brick, select the first brick by the above method, then hold down the control key. While the control key is depressed, left click on the additional bricks you want to include. (If you select one be accident, simply left click on that brick again to deselect it.)
To select a group of bricks using the rubber-band method, place your mouse cursor in the play field next to a brick (not on one). Click and hold the left mouse button, and then move your mouse. You will notice a green box begin to draw between the spot you clicked and the current location of your cursor. Any brick in this box will be selected when you release the left mouse button.
NOTE: Other methods of selecting bricks can be found in the Edit Menus topic in this forum.
Moving a Group of Bricks
Moving one brick at a time, when you want to move a group, is time-consuming. To move multiple bricks at once, you must first select them by one of the methods mentioned above. Once the bricks are selected, click and hold any brick in the selected range and move your mouse. When you move your mouse, note that all selected bricks move. Release the mouse when they are where you want them to be.
If you want to flip the bricks horizontally or vertically, there is an option for this that is quick and simple. After selecting the bricks you want to flip, go to the edit menu on the palette and select Align. The pull-down menu has an option for both horizontal and vertical flipping at the bottom. It’s really that simple!
When working with several bricks, you may want to align the bricks so that they all begin from a certain point, or line-up along a certain line. In addition, once the bricks are aligned, you may want the bricks to be spaced evenly along that line. There are quick ways to do this. First, select the bricks you want to align, then move the mouse to the edit menu on the palette and select “Align”. The pull-down menu shows 6 types of alignment options. Select the one you want and watch the bricks align on the screen. To space the bricks evenly, make sure the bricks are still selected and using the Align option on the edit menu, select the “Space Evenly” option. Now your bricks are aligned and evenly spaced.
NOTE: When looking at the Align pull-down menu, notice that all the align options (except one of the Align Centers) have shortcut keys. Although not noticeable, the shortcut key for spacing evenly is “E”. Using these shortcuts can save a lot of time when editing and usually become second nature after a very short period of time.
Rotating and Scaling
This sounds like it might be difficult to do, but it's pretty easy. The editor allows you to take a brick or object and enlarge it, shrink it, and deform it quickly by using "Drag Handles". These Drag Handles are normally displayed around selected bricks and objects, and appear as a white "box" with square 'points' and a green circle at the top of the box. Drag Handles are used by clicking, HOLDING and DRAGGING the LEFT mouse button, which will then rotate and scale the brick or object.
Dragging a corner Drag Handle always scales the brick or object proportionally. Dragging a side or "midpoint" Drag Handle will stretch the brick or object taller or wider. The green circle at the top will Rotate the brick or object. Holding SHIFT while dragging a Drag Handle will rotate and scale the POSITIONS of the selected brick or object without changing the IMAGES of the bricks.
Tip # 1: If you find that these Drag Handles are in your way, you can turn them off in the Options Menu.by unchecking the "Add Rotate and Scale Handles to Selected Objects" checkbox. Also, the shortcut key "x" will also toggle these off and on.
Tip # 2: You can rotate and scale Path Polygons too (described later)...just make sure to exit path editing mode first.
Many scripts require that a brick be named. There are two ways to assign a name to a brick.
1) Double click on any brick you have placed in the play field. Be sure you are on the General Tab on the window that appears. In the field that says Name, enter any name you wish. You may find it helpful to assign a descriptive name like “Top Orbitor” or “Bottom Mover”.
2) The other way is to name a brick is to allow the editor to do it for you. This is helpful because you are not required to name any brick that may be in a script prior to beginning your script. If in the middle of scripting, you refer to a brick that does not have a name (by using the pick function and picking a brick), the editor will assign a name to that brick for you. While this is helpful in that it will not slow you down while you are scripting, the name it assigns is often hard to remember and not helpful.
If I don't get my Infinity, I'm going back to bed!
Last edited by BigMama on Wed Apr 09, 2008 3:09 am, edited 1 time in total.