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    Flip Screen

    Concept »

    Flip screen (or flick-screen) describes a way of dividing the game world into fixed screens, displayed one at a time. It's commonly found in 2D platformers, especially prior to the 16-bit era.

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    Flip screen (also known as flick-screen or page-flipping) is a concept which splits a game up into screen-sized areas or rooms, which players navigate one at a time. Most often, the player can move to the next area by reaching one of the edges of the screen, at which point the new area "flips" onto the screen. The technique was common in games for 8-bit consoles and home computers (especially the ZX Spectrum) because hardware limitations made side-scrolling very demanding to render. In platformers the view is usually side on, but flick screen has also been used with the top-down perspective, and even the isometric or 3/4 viewpoint.

    As computers and consoles became more powerful in the 1990s, this technique fell out of use, in favor of side-scrolling as seen in the Super Mario series. It is still fairly common in retro-styled games.


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