> 4D Blocks

> Version 6

> Settings
  Block Motion
  Scene Language
  Kinds of Blocks


These settings are all on the Options screen that you get to through the Options menu command.

Retina Size

You'll probably want to turn down the retina size to reduce distortion around the edges. In the maze game it was important for the retina to be large so that you could see side passages without turning, and distortion didn't matter because everything was just cubes, but for looking at blocks you probably want something more like 1 to 1.3. Don't make it too small, though, or you'll feel like you're looking at the world through a cardboard tube!


Suppose you're looking at the square face of a cube in the game. To show you where the face is, the game can draw the boundary of the face, but it can also draw smaller squares collapsing toward the center of the face. Collectively I call these "textures". Texture 1 is near the center of the face, texture 9 is near the boundary, and texture 0 is the boundary itself. You can turn them on and off as you like by pressing 0-9.

Like all the other settings in the original maze game, the texture settings are saved when you exit the game and reloaded when you restart, so you can set them up as you like and then leave them alone. There are separate settings for 3D and 4D mode.

In the maze game, the boundary texture 0 was always colored white. It almost had to be, because different cubes often have different colors, and they intersect at their boundaries. However, in geometry mode, as of version 3, the boundary texture is (by default) colored with the shape color.

So, in 4D in the maze game, texture 0 was not so useful and other textures were used instead, but in geometry mode, texture 0 is now extremely useful. You'll probably want to turn off all other textures in 4D. In 3D the display never gets too crowded, so any settings are reasonable—all textures on, all textures off except the boundary. My favorite is 2-5-8 and the boundary on.

You can hit the "A" key to toggle the boundary texture from color back to the original white if you want.

Technical note: different faces of an object can have different colors, so what happens with the boundaries in that case? Well, it's like painting. The last color applied is the one that dominates.

Move Speed

If you're sitting still, there's nothing in the game that tells you how big the objects are. They could be tiny and up close, they could be huge and far away. The only way you can tell which is which is by moving. Therefore, by adjusting your move speed, you can adjust how big things feel in game! For geometry mode I recommend turning the move speed down by setting the move time to 2 seconds or thereabouts. That makes the model trains nice and large.

Frame Rate

At the moment, the train speed in the scene files is distance per frame, not distance per time, so if you change the frame rate, your trains will move faster or slower than they should. Sorry about that. You can fix it by editing the scene files. For example, if you double the frame rate, you can go in the scene file and replace "0.01 newtrack" with "0.005 newtrack".


  See Also