Parallax Map Size (Reference)

senmingwu

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So there's a lot of.. unclear non-answers to "What's the best?" and "What's the maximum?"

This thread is my experience annihilating that lack of clarity. Blah blah blah, personal use and doesn't reflect opinions or fullest extent of optimized, compressed, re-programmed GUNDAM OS mid-battle.

First will be the map size, how many walkable tiles, general info.
Following will be the related parallax map's PNG dimensions, general info, and rough estimate for an average compresed & non-optimized filesize.
Repeated from maximum to minimum. And then a couple general recc's at the end.

1) 256x256 map size (MAXIMUM)
The map will be laggier the more you add to it, dependent on how often things are updating. If you have 1000 different animations, conditions, and events all vying for attention it's going to hurt, even on a high end pc. If you have a couple detailed layers that may be.. claustrophobic, you're probably fine.

One question bigger than the map size is "Why does anyone need a map this big?"
256^2 = 65 536 walkable tiles.
Each of those 65 536 walkable tiles are 2 304px (48x48 px) = 150 994 944px.

For comparison, full HD (1920x1080p) = 2 073 600px
Full HD = ~1/73rd 256x256 map size.
This = ~1.37% of a 256x256 map on screen at once.
Translated to RMMV, full HD = ~40x22.5 walkable tiles.

It doesn't feel as big as it is because it's only ~6 screenlengths wide, but when taken in context of game data that's massive. This is like trying to forcefeed a kitty 40lbs of dry rice at once, so it won't meow for more. More rice in one sitting =/= healthy kitty :(
12 288 x 12 288 px parallax
A parallax map at that size, even if it's blank (black, white) will not load in the editor. The editor will freeze & CTD without warning. It won't even give you the chance to save & open a game with that size of a pic.

And.. really, it's going to be ridiculously sized if you went all-out (626-628MB in my tests).
Using an optimized setting, it was ~180MB and still crashed the editor.
2) 240x240 map size
57 600 walkable tiles.
No noticeable difference.
11 520 x 11 520 px
Down by an average of ~20MB. Hovers in ~160MB compressed.
Results vary with different optimization/compression/etc.
3) 200x200 map size
40 000 walkable tiles.
No noticeable difference.
9 600 x 9 600 px
Semi-loadable, still crashes.
Down by ~40MB, hovers in ~120MB.
4) 170x170 map size
28 900 walkable tiles.
Somewhat faster for me.
8 160 x 8 160 px
Slightly smaller than technical-grade 8k (8192x8192).
~200% resolution of consumer-grade 8k (7680x4320).
~90-95MB filesize, still got editor CTD.
5) 150x150 map size
22 500 walkable tiles.
Noticeably faster than 1 & 2 for me. This is like catching a pencil mid-drop.
7 200 x 7 200 px
Got this to load once. Freezes often, CTD a few times.
Once in-game it's a breeze, but if the editor dies you can't save, sooooo.. nopers for me.
~70-75MB filesize.
6) 120x120 map size
14 400 walkable tiles.
My computer, my friends' laptops & desktops, all nominal.
This is the maximum I'd probably go with unless I was pushing the RMMV engine to see what it can do.
5 760 x 5 760 px
Sometimes lags, hangs, freezes, or CTD's the editor. Other times it doesn't.
~50MB filesize
7) 100x100 map size
10 000 walkable tiles.
This is probably my ideal "maximum" for map sizes. I like how it loads, I like that it mostly plays nice w/ parallax map png's in the editor. I like this like liking a cucumber & mint iced tea in the summer.
4 800 x 4 800 px
It uhh. It works, kinda. Mostly! It lags the editor, but it hasn't completely frozen for me in years. CTD'd once in 2017(?). Pretty stable for laptops & desktops, tho I'd be wary with this size in mobile.

To boot..
This is ~50% larger than technical-grade 4k (4096x4096).
And ~400% bigger than consumer-grade UHD 4k (3840x2160).
~35-40MB filesize
8) 70x70 map size
4 900 walkable tiles.
Very fast, very efficient, I've found. Probably a good upper tier size of map.
Yeah, yeah, "B-but it can tear down the highway at 200x200 mph" and all that. Obvs do what works for your game, but it's a lot easier when what works is manageable.
3 360 x 3 360 px
First time trying this size. Seems a little slow to load, otherwise works fine. I might start using this more often, instead of overwhelming by going from 50x50 to 100x100.
~20MB filesize
9) 50x50 map size
2 500 walkable tiles.
More than enough space for most adventures and puzzles. This is my fave size for medium or "normal" maps. In my case, I tend toward this one and 30x30 for settlements.
2 400 x 2 400 px
Mm, this is my ideal for a normal size for an image in a game. It loads quick enough, has enough room for "detail," and still has a pretty good resolution:

~25% larger than technical-grade 2k (2048x2048).
~160% bigger than consumer-grade QHD/WQHD 2k (2560x1440).
~10-12MB filesize
10) 30x30 map size
900 walkable tiles.
Noteable because full HD, 1080p shows ~900 tiles on-screen, but it's 40 wide & 22.5 tall. So on an HD screen you'll have the full map width-wise, but ~25% missing from height. I can't think of anything off the top of my head, but that seems like it could be useful.

I almost like this more than minimum, as a game's default. I'm also happy there's a minimum smaller than this, although my perfectionism insists on a 1x2 map haha.
1 440 x 1 440 px
This may be the best size for this engine as a ratio of filesize to what-can-be-done-with-it.

Although technically a 1-to-1 with full HD, 1080p for number of pixels, this has less width and more height than a full HD screen can handle. Stringing a couple maps with these together could make for a fun puzzle.
~4-5MB filesize, so it's ideal in a couple ways.
11) 20x17 map size
340 walkable tiles.
Perhaps aesthetic preference, I tend toward square maps for interiors, like 20x20's to 25x25's. Smaller map sizes can fit interiors more practically, with less wasted (filler) area.

I personally don't use 20x17 very often, except when testing the engine and the databases on blank or throwaway maps.

e.g. - I once made the characters DB something like 103k fully-made characters long to see if I could even play a map. Editor lag and load time for the game sucked, but once I got the game going it was fine. Probably not advisable to screw around with that stuff to that extent, but if you're adventurous.. ;)
960 x 816 px
Nothing wrong with this, I just don't use it unless I'm practicing old-school remakes like Atari or Commodore, etc. or otherwise testing where my skills are for speedpainting parallax maps.
~1-2MB filesize
12) 20x15, 17x13, 1x1 map size (MINIMUM)
300, 221, and 1 walkable tile respectively.
I was the silly -- the experimenter in me laughs. 20x17 wasn't the right size, it was 17x13. And that wasn't a minimum, it was where the map size started for RMMV. Yiiiiikes.

And yeah, as a silly, I don't use 20x15, 17x13, or 1x1 either. Although, since I didn't experiment as much as I'd thought, and since brain wanted 2x1 -- which is possible in RMMV's latest build -- perhaps I'll use smaller than 20x20 - 25x25's more often. :LZSblush:

As of latest updates, these are the minimums for English version:
RMMV v1.6.2 can do 1x1 = 48 x 48 px
RMVXA v1.02a can do 17x13 = 544 x 416 px
RMVX v1.03a can do 17x13 = 544 x 416 px
RMXP v1.05a can do 20x15 = 640 x 480 px
RM2k3 v1.12a can do 20x15 = 320 x 240 px
RM2k v1.6.2 can do 20x15 = 320 x 240 px
~1-2MB filesize for the parallax images

General recommendation 1: low estimates for map size/assets.
If you judge low and need to expand, it's much easier to screencap the smaller map's layout & re-apply to a larger map than to fit a larger map into a smaller area. Keeping in mind, of course, if you're parallax mapping each map.. those PNG's are going to add up to a huge game size.

e.g. - A blank, new file in RMMV comes up as ~385MB for me.
4-5 parallax map PNG's for 100x100 maps will be ~160-200MB on top of that. Not counting the rest of the maps' assets. Not counting plugins, custom animations, overlays, etc. So just with a couple larger maps, we're already looking at over half a GB of space taken up. The bigger the game size, the more players will expect a polished product.

General recc 2: experiment with it.
Rookie mistake in language learning is trying to tackle syntax (grammar, rules, structure) before understanding why/how you want to use the language. Same here.
Diving into a 256x256 filled to the brim with details is a nice achievement, but it doesn't do much for your overall understanding of how the things work together. Experimenting with 8 maps at 32x32 will take you farther than 1 map at 256x256, and it'll take you there much faster.

General recc 3: game-dependent, take it all with a wedge of lemon in your tea.
If you're not building the standard dungeon-crawling, '4-5 heroes of light' team, vanquishing a demon king & his evil empire kind of game.. then you may not need any of this. It's "useful" info, but really, it's just info. And probably 50-70% is personal taste tbh.

General recc 4: have fun with it.
I'm some rando on the internet lol. Don't let my personal use reference/guidelines stop you from making things outside the boundaries of what's normal. Go make something awesome.
 
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mlogan

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This has been moved to General Discussion as it's not really a tutorial.

 

TheoAllen

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Nice reference, although some of the text is horrible in dark mode
/Screenshot_33.jpg
Screenshot_34.jpg
 

senmingwu

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Thanks for the move mlogan!

Some general edits (inconsistencies, spelling, spacing) + text recolor with dark mode in mind. Thanks for pointing that out TheoAllen!~
Btw is dark mode a browser or an RM forum thing? :p Wanted to learn & test with future posts in mind but idk the things
 

mlogan

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@senmingwu Down at the bottom of the forum page, you can change the theme.
1596564293711.png

Click on the text beside the paintbrush icon to see the available themes.
 

Kes

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I personally don't use this very often, except when testing the engine and the databases on blank or throwaway maps.
As an aside, this is usually the maximum I use for interiors (houses, shops) and even then, the map may not take up the whole of the screen. See, for example, this WIP map (done in the editor) which doesn't take up the full width. This size has, in fact, often been the entire house of a modest-income, or poor NPC. It really doesn't need to be any bigger. I think it would be a shame to give the impression that there is no use for smaller maps when "make it smaller" is one of the most common feedback comments in the Game & Map Screenshots thread.
 

senmingwu

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Thanks @mlogan!! Very different, yet similar feel for the different themes haha

@Kes Like you, I tend toward smaller sizes for interiors, although I usually make them square 20x20's to 25x25's. Aesthetic preference? Even as a small difference from 20x17, I didn't want to be misleading by saying I use the engine's minimum in games if I don't. Although I suppose I could just as easily edit that with the additional clarification :p
 

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