Text Tool using a sprite sheet?

I’m working on a script for Aseprite that lets you generate text based on a sprite sheet rather than a font. I use a lot of decorated text so this would save me lots of time. The thing is, there’s a lot of different ways to go with how it could work. Maybe you guys can help me decide. Then I’ll post the plugin when it’s finished.

Idea #1:
You give the tool a path to a sprite sheet, then type in the size of the grid squares, and then give it a string that tells the tool which tiles correspond to which glyphs, for example “AbBbCcDdEe… etc” or “abcde…ABCDE…”. Then you give it the text you want it to generate and it puts the image into the file you’re working on similar to the currently existing Text Tool.

Idea #2:
You give the tool the path to a sprite sheet, and the path to a text file. The text file tells the tool which tiles correspond to which glyphs. Then you just type in the text you want it to generate.

Idea #3:
You make a sprite sheet, you give the sprite the dimensions of the grid and the glyph associations, and then it will save the information into a special file. This will be a pixel art font file that the tool can open and generate text with.

Idea #4:
You give the tool a directory or a .zip with a series of image files and they are individually named (a.png, b.png, ?.png, etc…) and the tool can open that and use that to generate your decorated text.

Idea #5:
Something else?

Let me know what you think. Ideally I want the tool to be comfortable to use, so that’s why I came here to see what the community thinks before I start making it. Also there might be some pitfalls that I failed to consider beforehand, so maybe someone might be able to point those out.

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Hi duo_decimus! :smiley:

I think that the best option would be using a known and tested bitmap font format, maybe the one used by BMFont: https://www.angelcode.com/products/bmfont/

This format consists in a .png file (you can configure this on “option>export options>texture>png”) plus a plain txt file (the extension is .fnt, but it’s a txt anyway).

That way people could directly use the fonts that they already have, and since the format has been quite tested through the years, you’d also avoid the pitfalls you were worried about ^^

On the other hand, while this is the most complete option, it’s probably a bit less user-friendly in terms of creating the fonts than, for example, idea #4.

Thank you for your work! and please let us know if we can help! :wink:

Oh wow, that is really helpful information. So the script will generate .fnt files from a spritesheet inside of Aseprite and use the .fnt files to generate text. That’s great.

This will be a bit of work but I think I have a sane plan now. Thanks so much for your help.

The site you linked also has a specification sheet for the format, which is really helpful http://www.angelcode.com/products/bmfont/doc/file_format.html

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I’m glad you liked the idea ^^ Looking forward to your plugin! :smiley:

I can’t wait for this tool to come out, It would make my life so much easier. I make and use sprite fonts all the time but to make more custom text bits I have to spell everything out in Aseprite and then make the edits there. It takes so much time to Ctrl copy each letter over, and this would make it so much easier. I hope this comes to fruition.