The engine is free to use. All I’d like for it is a credit (to Dark) and link to/address of my website (dark-gaming.net). It would be nice if you let me know you’re using it though.
Having worked a lot on my game “Blue Sun” I learned how to implement hexagonal grid boards for games.
I wrote a short tutorial about them on Game Maker Forum.
It only explained some basic theory behind the hexagonal grids so I sometimes had people contacting me asking for more explanations about the topic.
I always tried to be helpfull, but eventually I realised that my tutorial is not enough. Even knowing the theory, implementing a hexagonal grid can be a nightmare and I’m not surprised that many people couldn’t do it or have eventually given up.
Since I already had all the problems and solutions behind me I decided to write my own hexagonal grid engine for Game Maker.
The engine is done, ready and free to use.
I must admit I am really satisfied with how this worked out. I implemented a clean, stable engine with easy to use functions and interface while giving many possibilities and freedom to use it in the desired way.
Basically the engine just marks hexagonal fields with objects. What the user does with these objects is up to him/her.
Another great feature of the engine is that it can support more hexagonal grids than one.
You could, for example use separate hexagonal grids in your game where one represents ground space, while other represents air space (as presented in the example). These grids could have their own obstacles and terrain aspects.
The funny thing about this engine is that I was really surprised how efficient it is.
Implementing hexagonal grid in Blue Sun I encountered a few performance problems. I had to work on optimising the movement path searching.
The hexagonal grids in the engine I made worked much much faster. In Blue Sun path finding was getting slow with about 1 second delay for movement above 7 fields of range.
In the grid engine paths are built almost instantly with similar or larger ranges.
I tried to show the most important features of the engine in the included example. If it turns out that the users will still have problems and if there will be enough interest I may write a few tutorials on this website on how to use the engine.