Saturday, October 11, 2014

Creating a Font

A strange quirk of AGS 2.3 is that the only font format it supports is the format from old Sierra games. This means that you either stick with the default fonts, rip the fonts out of old Sierra games or make your own.

I've been using AGS long enough that I cannot stand the default font, it's synonymous with a project that's in the early phases for me, and I can't think of any Sierra games with fonts that would suit the chunky style of font I quite like using. The solution was clearly to make my own.

To work with the font format, I can use Radiant FontEdit, a simple, easy to understand program designed by a fellow AGS user specifically for working with font formats AGS can use. There's very little to it, save having the patience to sit there and make each character, pixel by pixel. I taught myself calligraphy earlier this year - this seems quite pleasant and fast in comparison.

The only real issue I had was that the program mysteriously closes whenever I press [enter], meaning that I had to force myself not to do this when entering values in fields after losing my work around 7 times. I also split the task up over a couple of days so I didn't find it too tedious.

With my first attempt at my font done, the next step is to try importing it into my game and testing it.

A couple of errors here - clearly I accidentally placed z where y should be, the letters are spaced too far apart, f,t and i have different heights which looks awkward here. Back to the editor to make some fixes:

And import it back into the game:

I'm happy with this! I'll be keeping an eye out for odd looking letters as I start adding messages into the game, but for now it's time to move on to the next task!


  1. "This means that you either stick with the default fonts, rip the fonts out of old Sierra games or make your own"

    Or you write a small tool to convert other existing bitmap fonts to the old Sierra format. :P

  2. That would be an interesting challenge, certainly, but learning to do that would probably take me longer than developing the font (programming isn't my speciality, and I know nothing about font formats), and I'm hoping to use easy to find software so that if any others wanting to do a similar project hope to use this as a guide, they can find and use them, too.

    Also, doing that would sidetrack me, and getting sidetracked is a very bad idea. :D