AnimatedTexture in Godot – Complete Guide

Welcome to the vibrant world of game development with Godot 4, an open-source engine that has been taking the indie game scene by storm. If you’ve ever been intrigued by the creation of animations within games, or if you’re just looking for new tools to add to your developer’s toolkit, then you’re in the right place. Today, we’re diving into the AnimatedTexture class, a resource that makes frame-based animations a breeze. Stick with us, and you’ll learn how to bring your game graphics to life with this handy feature.

What is AnimatedTexture?

AnimatedTexture is a powerful class in the Godot 4 engine which enables developers to create simple frame-based animations. It’s a type of Texture2D resource that can be used where you usually employ a static texture, with the added functionality of animation.

What is AnimatedTexture Used For?

The utility of AnimatedTexture shines when you need to animate elements like UI icons, environmental effects, or characters in a more low-scale, efficient manner. It works great for scenarios where a full-fledged animation system like AnimationPlayer or AnimatedSprite2D might be overkill.

Why Should I Learn About AnimatedTexture?

Understanding AnimatedTexture opens up a new avenue for animating in Godot 4, particularly for those times when you need quick, simple animations without the overhead of nodes. It’s an essential skill for any aspiring Godot developer wanting to create visually appealing games. With animations being an integral part of game design, mastering AnimatedTexture means you’re enhancing the user experience and ultimately, the success of your game projects. Let’s start animating!

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Creating an AnimatedTexture

To get started with AnimatedTexture, we first create a new resource in the Godot editor. Here’s a basic snippet on how to instantiate an AnimatedTexture in code:

var animated_texture = AnimatedTexture.new()

Next, you’ll want to add frames to your animation. You need to set each frame as an individual Texture resource and define the frame’s delay. The following example demonstrates how to set up a 4-frame animation:

animated_texture.frames = 4
animated_texture.set_frame_texture(0, preload("res://frame0.png"))
animated_texture.set_frame_delay(0, 0.1)
animated_texture.set_frame_texture(1, preload("res://frame1.png"))
animated_texture.set_frame_delay(1, 0.1)
animated_texture.set_frame_texture(2, preload("res://frame2.png"))
animated_texture.set_frame_delay(2, 0.1)
animated_texture.set_frame_texture(3, preload("res://frame3.png"))
animated_texture.set_frame_delay(3, 0.1)

The frames property defines how many frames your animation will have while set_frame_texture assigns a texture to a specific frame. The set_frame_delay method sets the duration for which each frame is displayed.

Playing the Animation

In order for the animated texture to actually play, you need to attach it to a node that can display textures, such as a Sprite. You can set the texture property of the Sprite to your AnimatedTexture:

var sprite = Sprite.new()
sprite.texture = animated_texture
add_child(sprite)

Since we’re using code only to create and play the animation, you’ll also need to code in the play functionality. In the case of AnimatedTexture, it automatically starts playing once it’s assigned to a property that can display it:

animated_texture.play()

However, this method is not required because AnimatedTexture does not require a play method to start playing. It will play immediately upon being displayed by a Sprite or TextureRect node. If you want to toggle the playing state, you would make the AnimatedTexture visible or invisible.

Stopping and Resetting the Animation

To stop the animation and reset it to its initial state, assign a static texture or a new AnimatedTexture:

sprite.texture = preload("res://static_texture.png")

Or you can set the animated texture to a different frame like so:

animated_texture.frame = 0

This will reset the animation to its first frame, effectively stopping it at that point.

Changing Animation Speed

Customizing your animation speed on the fly is also straightforward with AnimatedTexture. You can adjust the delay of each frame individually or loop through all frames to set a new delay:

for frame in animated_texture.frames:
    animated_texture.set_frame_delay(frame, new_delay)

By manipulating the frame delay values, you have fine-grained control over how fast or slow your animation plays, which is particularly handy for dynamic effects in your game.

Looping Animations

Looping animations with AnimatedTexture implies that after the last frame is displayed, it jumps back to the first frame and continues playing. To achieve looping, simply continue to display the AnimatedTexture; no special settings are required.

However, if you wish to control the looping behavior with scripts, consider using a Timer node in conjunction with the AnimatedTexture to restart the animation after a set duration.

In the next part of our tutorial, we’ll look at more advanced features and tips for maximizing the use of AnimatedTextures in your projects. Stay tuned!

Advanced Control of AnimatedTexture in Godot 4

As we continue exploring the capabilities of AnimatedTexture, let’s dive into more advanced techniques that can enhance your animations in Godot 4.

Toggling Animations On and Off

Sometimes you may want to start or stop an animation based on an in-game event or action. The visibility of the Sprite node that holds the AnimatedTexture can control this:

// To hide and stop the AnimatedTexture:
sprite.visible = false

// To show and play the AnimatedTexture:
sprite.visible = true

This approach helps in controlling animated state indicators or other interactive elements of your game’s UI.

Responding to User Input

Animating in response to user input is common in games. For example, if you want a button to animate when a user hovers over it, you can set the texture of the UI element to an AnimatedTexture in the input event method.

func _on_Button_mouse_entered():
    var hover_animation = preload("res://hover_animation.animatedtexture")
    $ButtonIcon.texture = hover_animation

Similarly, reconnect to the static texture on mouse exit.

func _on_Button_mouse_exited():
    $ButtonIcon.texture = preload("res://default_icon.png")

Randomizing Frame Start

For less uniform and more natural animations, like flickering flames or twinkling stars, you might want to start the animations at random frames:

animated_texture.frame = randi() % animated_texture.frames

This code snippet assigns a random frame as the starting frame of the animation, which can give a disordered, realistic timing when you have multiple instances of the same animation.

Synchronizing Animation with Game Events

Animations often need to be synced with game events such as character actions or environmental changes. By changing the frame index in reaction to these events, you can provide more immersive feedback to the player:

func on_character_jump():
    animated_texture.frame = jump_frame

Assign the appropriate frame when the character jumps to display a different texture or animation during that action.

Blending Animations

What if you want to blend two animations together? You can use a ShaderMaterial to blend between two AnimatedTexture resources:

// Assuming you've created a shader that blends two textures based on a 'blend_value'.
var shader = ShaderMaterial.new()
shader.set_shader_param('texture1', animated_texture1)
shader.set_shader_param('texture2', animated_texture2)
shader.set_shader_param('blend_value', 0.5)

// Assign the ShaderMaterial to your Sprite.
sprite.material = shader

By adjusting the blend_value, you can dynamically change the visibility ratio between texture1 and texture2.

Remember, programs that appear dynamic and responsive provide a richer experience for players. With these examples, we hope you’ve gained further insight into how AnimatedTexture can be used to create lively and engaging elements within your Godot games. Whether it’s UI, characters, or environment animation, AnimatedTexture is a tool that can add visual flair to your creations without the need for complex node setups or animation timelines.

Stay tuned as we push the envelope and uncover more capabilities and creative implementations of the Godot 4 engine’s features! Keep learning, keep coding, and most importantly, keep creating.Continuing our journey into the labyrinth of possibilities with AnimatedTexture, we can further refine and manipulate animations to better serve the game’s design.

Syncing Looped Animations with Different Lengths

When dealing with multiple animations of varying lengths that are meant to run in a loop, syncing them might be challenging. Here’s how you can ensure that two such animations remain in sync.

// Assume we have two AnimatedTextures of different frame counts
var anim_short = AnimatedTexture.new()
var anim_long = AnimatedTexture.new()

// Setting up their frame counts and frame delays
anim_short.frames = 4
anim_long.frames = 6
for i in anim_short.frames:
    anim_short.set_frame_delay(i, 0.1)
for i in anim_long.frames:
    anim_long.set_frame_delay(i, 0.1)

// Our sync function checks for the frame count and adjusts delays
func sync_animations():
    var lcm = (anim_short.frames * anim_long.frames) / gcd(anim_short.frames, anim_long.frames)
    var delay_short = lcm / anim_short.frames
    var delay_long = lcm / anim_long.frames
    for i in anim_short.frames:
        anim_short.set_frame_delay(i, delay_short)
    for i in anim_long.frames:
        anim_long.set_frame_delay(i, delay_long)

// A simple greatest common divisor function
func gcd(a, b):
    while b != 0:
        var temp = b
        b = a % b
        a = temp
    return a

This code sets the same total duration for both animations by computing the least common multiple (LCM) of their frame counts.

Using AnimatedTexture with Particles

AnimatedTextures can also be utilized within particle systems for more complex visual effects. Here’s how you could assign an AnimatedTexture to a Particles2D node for a frame-based animated particle system.

// First, create your AnimatedTexture resource
var particle_anim_texture = AnimatedTexture.new()
particle_anim_texture.frames = 4
//... set up frames and delays ...

// Create a ParticlesMaterial and assign the AnimatedTexture to it
var particles_mat = ParticlesMaterial.new()
particles_mat.albedo_texture = particle_anim_texture

// Assign the ParticlesMaterial to your Particles2D node
$Particles2D.process_material = particles_mat

By assigning an AnimatedTexture as the `albedo_texture` of a `ParticlesMaterial`, you can add animation to particle effects, which is perfect for fire, smoke, or magical effects.

Implementing Health Bar Animation with AnimatedTexture

Let’s say you want to create an animated health bar that changes depending on the player’s health. Here’s a way to bind the frame of an AnimatedTexture to a health property.

// Assume you have a health bar AnimatedTexture with frames corresponding to different health states
var health_bar_texture = AnimatedTexture.new()
//... setup health bar frames ...

func update_health(health_percent):
    // health_percent is between 0 and 1
    var frame = int(health_bar_texture.frames * health_percent)
    health_bar_texture.frame = clamp(frame, 0, health_bar_texture.frames - 1)

// Use the update_health method whenever the player's health changes

This example binds the frame index to a percentage of health, clamping it within the range of available frames.

AnimatedTexture for Background Parallax

You can also create a parallax background effect using AnimatedTexture. The blend of animation within different layers can produce a rich, deep field effect.

// Assign a looping AnimatedTexture to a Sprite in the background layer
var parallax_background = AnimatedTexture.new()
//... initialize the AnimatedTexture ...

// Then set the AnimatedTexture to the Sprite node for your background
$BackgroundLayer.Sprite.texture = parallax_background

// To move the background, shift the UV position of the Sprite over time
func _process(delta):
    var uv_offset = $BackgroundLayer.Sprite.material.uv_offset
    uv_offset.x += delta * parallax_speed
    $BackgroundLayer.Sprite.material.uv_offset = uv_offset

Adjust `parallax_speed` to control the speed at which the background moves, creating the parallax scrolling effect.

These examples reveal only a fraction of the ways AnimatedTexture can be used within the Godot 4 engine to enhance visual dynamics. As a versatile tool for game developers, its applications range from simple UI elements to complex environmental effects, each adding depth and intrigue to a game. As with all features in Godot, experimenting and combining techniques can lead to uniquely customized and tailored experiences.

Keep practicing and building with these examples, as hands-on experience is the key to mastering game development with Godot 4. Remember, we at Zenva are here to support your learning journey every step of the way!

Continue Your Game Development Journey

You’ve made great strides in learning about AnimatedTexture in Godot 4, but this is just the beginning of what’s possible with this dynamic engine. To take your game development skills to the next level, delve into our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree. This comprehensive collection of courses is crafted to guide you through creating robust games, covering both 2D and 3D design, GDScript, and core gameplay mechanics across various game genres. The flexibility of our program allows you to learn at your own pace and build a portfolio that shows off your new, in-demand skills.

If you’re eager to explore a broader range of topics in game development with Godot, visit our full suite of Godot courses. Here you’ll find an array of tutorials to support your growth from beginner to professional levels. Whether your interest lies in refining specific techniques or gaining a holistic understanding of the engine, we’ve got you covered.

Join our vibrant community of learners at Zenva Academy and turn your passion for game creation into a reality. Start building your own games, enhancing your portfolio, and unlocking new opportunities in the gaming industry with the skills you gain from our expertly crafted courses. The world of game development awaits you – keep coding, keep creating, and never stop learning!

Conclusion

Embarking on the game development journey requires curiosity, creativity, and the right learning resources. With the power of Godot 4’s AnimatedTexture, your games are bound to come alive with vibrant animations that captivate players. Remember, the tools are at your fingertips, and with Zenva Academy’s Godot Game Development Mini-Degree, you have the opportunity to turn those tools into outstanding game experiences. This is your chance to transform your game development dreams into playable realities.

So, let your imagination run wild, and let us at Zenva Academy accompany you on this thrilling quest for knowledge and mastery in the magical realm of game creation. The skills you acquire will not only bolster your ability to craft incredible games but also set you on a path to becoming a game development wizard in the Godot engine. Code, create, and conquer the gaming world – we’re here supporting you every pixel of the way!

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