A brand new game
for Windows, HTML5, 3DS Homebrew, iPhone, Android TV and more,
12th December, 2018
I spent about 80% of yesterday choosing a font!
A quick tool was created which goes through a directory of fonts, and for each one scales it at a variety of sizes to fit inside a 16x16 pixel grid.
From there, it scans each and every pixel, giving it a value of either 0 for bright solid white or black, or a 1 for "a bit grey". Basically how gritty it looks, when scaled up.
The "best fit" of each font is based on the lowest scoring "grit" amount, coupled with the largest size that fits comfortably in the 16x16 grid.
If a font is "too gritty" and won't render neatly into simple monochrome, then the font is abandoned.
It scanned my collection of Brian Kent AEnigma fonts (as per usual!) and it spat out a list of numbered fonts with their grit scores so that when viewed in explorer, they show up with the neatest fonts up at the top.
From there it was a case of scanning through the fonts to try to decide which one will suit future games the best, and .. Well, I've ended up back at Bandwidth-Bandless again!!
This was the font used in my previous Monkey-X framework, and honestly it just seems to fit really well.
I spent a good while tweaking a couple of the characters that were output, for readability, but otherwise I'm quite happy with the way it now looks in the engine on both desktop and 3DS.
If you want to give the tool a whirl, you can Download FontScan here, with BlitzMax source included if you want to tweak it.
Dump fonts in the font folder, run the exe, wait (it's slow!!) and eventually you'll have a folder full of bitmap font images.