Level editor


It would be nice to hear some real life experiences about my problem:

I would like to migrate our 2D isometric game to 3D via jMonkeyEngine.

Let's say I already have game objects (hero, enemies, trees, buildings etc. )

Following is fact: Our graphics designer (3D models, texturing, animations) and our level designer (level design, scripting, etc) are two different persons. I now try to find a way to get this two worlds together. The graphic designer does not build levels, but "only" builds 3D objects. The level designer shall not work as designer, but "only" take the ready designed objects and put them together as a level.

And now the question: How can this be done?

My first thought (as a developer) was: I could build an own level editor. This editor is then used by the level designer. The level editor can load the 3D objects, put them at the desired position etc…  if the level is ready it can be written in an own level format. The game can read this format and render the level via jMonkeyEngine. At least one thing is missing in this thought: Terrain. This can be done either via a heightmap (TerrainBlock, TerrainPage, right?). Or using designed objects as terrain, too (is this possible?). All together we are talking about a few months of work, I think. Ok, it could be fun, but I want it a bit earlier and easier…

My second thought: Re-using an existent level editor, which has all the featuers we need. Then in the game I just take the level file, read it (after studing the format) and render it via jMonkeyEngine.

Which thought (1 or 2) leads me more directly to a finished game?

If I'd choose thought 1: Using heightmap for terrain or assemble everything with objects from the 3D designer?

And if I'd choose thought 2: Which level editor could this be?

Or maybe there is a third way?

Thank you in advance!


At the moment I'm working on a project, called Sandbox.

It's an interface, which do stuff like map and level editing.

The problem, it's still in development.  :wink:

I started two weeks ago, in two weeks I release the first version.

Don't expect to much, at the momentary progress it's a toy, not a tool.

If you combine Mapspinnner and Sceneworker you can pretty much do everything you want.

The thing ncomp wants to say, Sceneworker isn't designed as level editor.

You can do far more than just mapping. A person not used to jME might find it a bit difficult.

@ncomp: Hmm,…you are say "NO" and "YES, of course!" :smiley:

Actually I just played around a bit with sceneworker but as they say it is possible to use userdefined nodes as well (somehow) my first thought was, that it seems to be perfect for using it (as you want) as a level-editor…

that's FredB…

he was supposed to join the scene worker team last year but i haven't heard anything from him in nearly 8 months…

his stuff looked very good…

Your second thought is better, since there is already an editor - MW3D (Monkey World 3D). It has capabilities of saving data to proper data format, which can then be loaded into your game with no problems (you don’t even have to study its file format). You can also make terrain with it and particle effects + it has support for physics.

Anyway, my experience with this editor is, sadly not really good. I am using Windows Vista, and obviously it doesn’t really support it so I am missing a lots of functions, and get some nasty bugs :confused: I tried it also on WinXP, but was not really convinced that everything was right. Secondly, its development is kinda stopped and there were no updates for quite some time, so there is no support for the newest stuff.

I was also thinking of developing my own level editor, but since I am developing alone for my own fun, I don’t know if it would be worth. :slight_smile:

You can get MW3D here: http://mw3d.org/.

Would be really great if it would be working properly, because I think it had a great potential.  :(

I have also heard of some other tool: http://code.google.com/p/scenemonitor/wiki/SceneWorker, but didn’t try it yet, and I don’t know if it can be used like a real level editor.

SceneWorker can't be used as a level editor, to be honest it's not really meant to be one…

it's a jme scene editing tool…

however it is fully extensible so you could build a level editor on top of it easily enough…

There is a thread related to your inquiry that you should check out shadow82. I would say Mapspinnner+Sceneworker is our most viable level editor to date, and it gets you pretty close to the ‘full package’.

In that other thread you’ll see that ncomp is working on an integration between his sceneworker and mapspinner. Best case scenario (for the JME community anyways :smiley: ), maybe you could get yourself affiliated with the two systems and give him a hand in the integration to speed up the process?

Also, this is isometric top-down we’re talking about, right, not side-view?

Check these out i’m not sure who made them but it peaked my intrest

Editor Demo

Map Editor

Is he utilizing some of SceneWorker's features in this program, or did he make it all from scratch? Maybe we could bring him back and propose that he makes a level editor for mapspinner? I'll contact him.

Thank you very much for all the hints and commens!

I think SceneMonitor, SceneWorker and MapSpinner are definitly very helpfully tools which I must evalutate. I think I could working with them.

Unfortunately I could not find a download for MapSpinner…

Wow,…that is really curious! It really seems that it vanished??? Link dead, SVN-Dead!

Have a look here. We are not alone with this issue.


erlend_sh said:

Is he utilizing some of SceneWorker's features in this program, or did he make it all from scratch? Maybe we could bring him back and propose that he makes a level editor for mapspinner? I'll contact him.

From the date on the video I don't think scene worker would've been written yet.