ScummVM RGB color progress blog

August 11, 2009

Keymapper API proposal for engine to define actions

Filed under: Planning — Upthorn @ 2:22 am

Note: I’m staying up late to get this proposal written before the deadline my mentor has given, so my words in this post might not make a lot of sense.

It seems to me that the problem with the currently implemented approach is that the Action structure is too complicated to require engine authors to create and initialize a full structure for every single action that they wish to be mapped to a key. Additionally, it requires engine authors to give each individual action a universally unique 4 character ID, so that actions and their keymappings can be saved to the config without any other game that ScummVM can run ever overwriting it with a different key. However, some of the more complicated features of the Action structure may be necessary for some games to fully function in a reduced-key environment.

Because of these factors, it seems to me that there are two steps which should be taken to make the keymapper work better for engine authors:

  1. The Common::Action structure needs to be closely examined, and unnecessary components removed.
  2. One or more constructors should be provided to allow for easy mass production of more common types of Actions, especially ones that simply need to map one key press to some other button.

I fear that this API proposal is grossly insufficient, because the task of properly implementing modifiers in the keymapper has been much more interesting and less straightforward than I expected, and has left me with very little time before to properly examine the other aspects of the keymapper component before now.

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