Proposals/Obsolete Proposals/Map Descriptors

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Map descriptor files

Author: BTAxis (talk, contrib)

This is a proposal for descriptor files for maps. This proposal ties in with the proposal for the dynamic campaign, and is also related to the work done on Terrain Types.

The goal is to render missions.ufo obsolete by combining the campaign mechanics, the terrain masks and these map descriptors. Additionally, the goal is to facilitate the multiplayer game setup.

Format

Each map or mapset has associated with it one map descriptor. Ideally, these descriptors should be stored in separate files, but it's also possible to place them all in one file. The following is an example of fields that could be in the descriptor:

map farm
{
  map      farm08 //The file that contains the bsp filename of the map. Can also be a .ump. Without extension and d or n char.
  description "_A farmhouse surrounded by fields and sheds. A UFO has landed in one of the fields." //A description for this map for use in setting up multiplayer.
  size        "medium" //A rough indication of the map size relative to the others. This information is useful when choosing a map in multiplayer.
  teams       2 //The amount of multiplayer teams on this map.
  music       PsymongN2 //The music to play for this map.
  deathmatch  true //For use in filtering maps by game type during multiplayer setup.
  assault     false //For use in filtering maps by game type during multiplayer setup.
  takeandhold true //For use in filtering maps by game type during multiplayer setup.

  terrains //Lists the terrain types that this map can appear on. If the map is not bound by terrain restrictions, put a single entry named "Any".
  {
    grass
    cold
    desert
  }

  cultures //Lists the cultural areas that this map can appear on. If the map is not bound by culture, put "Any".
  {
    western
  }

  population //Lists the population density areas that this map can appear on. If the map is not bound by population density, put "Any".
  {
    rural
    village
    suburban
    urban
  }
}

Most of this is straightforward, but there are a couple of things to note.
Firstly, note that this descriptor does not specify how many aliens there are on this map, what types there are and what equipment they are using. This information is provided by the campaign framework.
Secondly, note that this map has "desert" listed as a valid terrain. However, since the cultures constraint disallows it to be placed in Africa or the Middle-East (as they have culture types african and oriental), that means the only deserts it can appear in are the ones in North america, South America and Australia. However, it will only appear on the edges of the Australian desert, as the center is unpopulated, and this map requires at least some population.

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