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In 2D gaming, the camera movement method has a lot do with the play style of the game. I'm not super familiar with the technical terms for camera styles, so I'm going to describe them in hopes someone can tell me the name I could google to find out more info. I'm also interested in hearing about any common styles I might have left off.

Latching camera style

The camera has fixed positions in the world where it cam be located and when a transition is made from one to the next, the whole world pauses while the screen moves. An example of this would be like the camera in the original Zelda game. There are "screens" and as you move from one screen to the next, the camera shifts to it's new fixed position in effect moving you to the next area.

Balloon camera style

The camera follows your every move. In most games it lags slightly behind the player's movement as if the camera were attached to a balloon being held by the central character. When the player stops moving, the balloon floats up, eventually coming to it's resting point directly above the central character's current location. In some games, it just always stays directly on top, but it's effectively the same mechanic.


These are not the technical names (I googled them and nothing comes up, so I'm pretty sure they are not), but can someone tell me what the technical names are? Also, are there any major styles of camera movement in 2D games that I have left off?

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    \$\begingroup\$ You may want to check out this article, which is excellent, and attempts to form standard names for camera-related concepts. \$\endgroup\$ – ashes999 Feb 1 '16 at 4:23
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I think the first one you are describing most closely matches a Fixed 2D camera and the second is a smooth floating or smooth sidescrolling 2D camera

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The first scenario is called Panning or sort of Parallex without having Camera Follow. It will totally up to you that how you handle behavior of Camera. That means pausing game, move camera ahead, you can do it manually like other objects.

In second case I think you are asking about Smooth Camera Follow that would follow your character in smooth manner. Well, have a look on these, let me know if you need more assistance.

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