Ace Preview: Region IDs and Encounter Setup

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So you’ve set up your World map and now you are ready to put encounters down on your map, but you want different terrain to have different types of encounters. In RPG Maker VX you would have had to rely on scripts or clumsy rectangular areas that you could never get to fit right.

Ace has a new non-visible map layer to help with this called the Region ID layer. This replaces the old Areas from RPG Maker VX. You can see the Region ID layer selection below.

Each map can have up to 63 layers plus a null layer. Currently the whole layer is drawn as a null layer. Lets start by painting the grass with the 1 Region ID. Just select the 1 from tile palette and start painting directly on the map. Easy, don’t you think?

Now lets fill the grass with 1, the trees with 2, and the hills with 3. Look at how much more exact this is than the old Areas. We can apply them in odd shapes, even in portions of the map that don’t even touch!

Time to add some enemies. You can see below how easy it is to set enemies to show up either on the whole map, or on up to 3 different Region IDs. I currently have it set to have Orcs show up on Grass, Trees, and Hills, Man-Eating Plants to show up in Trees, and I’m setting up Big Snakes to show up in Hills. Weight determines how common the enemies are in those areas.

And this is just what Region IDs are used for in the editor. Scripters have come up with plenty of new uses already such as slippery ice floors. No matter what you use Region IDs, their power is readily apparent.

So what ideas do you have for the use of Region IDs? Seen some useful scripts that take advantage of them? Tell us about it in the comments section below.

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9 comments… add one

  • Ingmar February 22, 2012, 4:36 am

    Sounds great. Will it be possible to store the Region ID into a variable? In that case you could use it for several purposes within the editor. E.g. line of sight, collision etc.

  • Zach February 22, 2012, 6:16 am

    That looks really useful.

  • Daniel February 22, 2012, 8:48 am

    This is a very high desired feature! Thanks!

  • amerk February 22, 2012, 9:54 am

    Pretty nifty, thank you for the explanation, as I was not entirely sure how this was going to be used. Looking at it now, this makes it so much nicer than the old “areas” option in VX.

    Some quick questions, though? How do you know what regions go with what tiles? Like you used 1 for Grass, 2 for Trees, and 3 for Hills. I’m assuming you do this in the database by determining which battleback goes for which region?

    How does Weight actually work. I’m guessing it means a percentage of the time (like 10 for Orcs means 10% of the time you’ll be fighting Orcs, but what if Orcs are the only thing in that region? Does that mean you will only encounter an enemy in that region 10% of the time, or is encounter frequency still handled by an average of steps?

    And what does “Range” mean?

    Thanks again!

    • des February 24, 2012, 6:19 pm

      The regions aren’t assigned to tiles—you paint the regions directly onto the map.

      In Nick’s example, region 1 was painted on the grass tiles, etc. But it could be anything. They don’t have to be ties to a specific tile type, either.

      The “range” column is simply a list of the region types that the troop will appear in.

  • carlos March 1, 2012, 9:12 am

    this is a good idea.

  • Ronald March 6, 2012, 7:29 am

    Will you be able to use the draw square, circle, and paint tool with this? I think large world maps would be extremely tedious if not…

  • Trihan March 15, 2012, 6:21 am

    Ronald: The terrain tag layer doesn’t allow use of the drawing tools, so you have to paint each tile individually.

    • Nick Palmer March 15, 2012, 6:37 am

      Yeah, I wish that they allowed the drawing tools as well. Honestly though I found that it doesn’t take that long as long as you know what you are planning on doing before starting.

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