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In this tutorial you will learn...

• How to split layers
• How this is useful

So, either you've read the basic mapping tutorials, or you're jumping straight in at the deep end. Either way, welcome to the More Advanced set of tutorials on map building! In this tutorial I'm just going to teach you one of the most useful skills you will ever use when map building, and that it layer splitting.

Layer splitting is a technique that allows you to put more than the usual amount of objects on the same number of layers. It's quite hard to explain, so just follow the example and you'll get the idea. First of all, get yourself a new map, and stick a simple tree in on layer 2, like so...

Now, get another tree and layer over it on layer 3, like this...

But, what if you want to put another tree over the second one (where the box is)? We don't want to have to use about eight events to do that. It is possible, using layer splitting.

First of all, whenever you layer split something, you need to know which bit stays on layer two, and which bit goes onto layer three. So, with our trees here, we need to put the third tree in on layer three (because we know that all of it is going to be on layer three when we're done). Follow the picture...

Now we can see that we have three trees. However, the second one is not complete. Switch back to layer 2, and select the bottom half of the tree's tiles from the tileset. Draw this in (you can see this in the first picture below) Now, draw them in on layer 2, and you should end up with something looking like the following (in the second picture below)...

Using this technique, you can make maps with more trees and more layered objects than you could before. Take a look at this picture, taken on layer 2. You can see all the splitting that I've done - and how useful this technique can be!

I admit, it is an ugly map, but it gets the point across. I would take a picture on layer 3 as well, but it would probably take up too much space. As with everything, practise and experimenting will improve your ability to do this, and with this technique especially, you just have to use your own good judegement when you need to use it.

The next tutorial is on adding atmosphere to your maps with events and database settings.

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