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GameStates with CStateManager



I released an OOP class sytem for leadwerks last time this time I'm going to post my StateManager class which I use to control all the gamestates for the game I am working on.


If you don't know what a Statemanager is or what my interpretation of one is I'll run through it quickly.

Generally speaking it's just a stack full of 'states' each state has a list of functions with identical names but different internal functionality, the game will call these functions but ONLY for the active state, say your game has a Draw function but you want a splash screen with a Draw function, you'll separate these into different States for the stack, now when your splash state is active only the splash's Draw function will be called. State stacks almost always run [L]ast n [F]irst [O]ut, so the last state you push onto the stack will be the one the game starts using, so to have a splash screen -> menu -> game order in your stack you would push the game onto the stack first, the menu second and the splash last so that the splash is the first thing the end user sees.


Enough ramblings let me post some code.



requires the class scripts.

class "CStateManager";

function CStateManager:Init()
self.States = {}

function CStateManager:Push(state, init)
if( ctype(state) == "CState" ) then
self.States[#self.States+1] = state;
if( init ) then
if( self.States[#self.States-1] and self.States[#self.States-1].isinit ) then
self.States[#self.States-1].isinit = false;
self.States[#self.States].isinit = true;
print("StateManager: CStateManager.Push expected CState got: "..ctype(state));

function CStateManager:InitCurrentState()
if( self.States[1] and not self.States[#self.States].isinit ) then
self.States[#self.States].isinit = true;

function CStateManager:Pop()
if( self.States[1] ) then
if( self.States[#self.States].isinit ) then
self.States[#self.States].isinit = false;
local oldState = self.States[#self.States];
self.States[#self.States] = nil;
return oldState;
print("StateManager: Called CStateManager.Pop with empty stack");

function CStateManager:GetAll()
return self.States

function CStateManager:GetActive()
if( self.States[1] and self.States[#self.States].isinit ) then
return self.States[#self.States];
print("StateManager: Called CStateManager.GetActive with no running states");

function CStateManager:Pause(state)
if( ctype(state) == "CState" ) then
state.paused = true;

function CStateManager:Resume(state)
if( ctype(state) == "CState" ) then
state.paused = false;

function CStateManager:IsPaused(state)
if( ctype(state) == "CState" ) then
return state.paused;

function CStateManager:Call(func, ...)
if( self.States[1] and self.States[#self.States].isinit and not self.States[#self.States].paused ) then
if( self.States[#self.States][func] ) then
self.States[#self.States][func](self.States[#self.States], ...);



-- Tiny file this one. really just a declaration and a nilfix file.

class "CState";

function CState:Init()

function CState:Shutdown()


Example useage.

-- Our splash screen.
SplashScreen = new "CState"

function SplashScreen:Init()
self.Something = "HELLO";

function SplashScreen:Think()
self.Something = self.Something.."O";
function SplashScreen:Draw()
App.context:DrawText(self.Something, 100, 100);

-- Now something else.
Random = new "CState"

function Random:Draw()
App.context:DrawText("Second State", 100, 200);


-- Now in our main file to initialize out statemanager and load our states.

function App:Start()
StateManager = new "CStateManager";
StateManager:Push(Random); -- Remember this goes before the splash so we see it AFTER the splash
StateManager:Push(SplashScreen, true); the true means we want to initialize this, as it's the last state being pushed we may aswell tell the statemanager we are ready to begin.

function App:Loop()
StateManager:Call("Think") -- Can name your functions anything, Init and Shutdown are always the same though.
StateManager:Call("Draw", "some", "arguments", "here", "if", "you", "want");


To remove the current state from the stack and initialize the next, we use StateManager:Pop();

I hope people get some use out of this, and I hope I've explained it nice enough.


Recommended Comments

Instead of:


SplashScreen = new "CState"


wouldn't you want:


class "SplashScreen" : extends "CState"


since that's sort of the point to why you made the extends function? Just curious why you didn't go that route?


Also I notice you are a semicolon guy. They aren't needed when each statement is on a separate line, but guessing you come from C++ and just a habit or you have some plans for them?

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SplashScreen is an instance of CState not a new derivative class, I know semi colons aren't needed just a habit that I don't see the need in breaking.


I try to make these modules self contained, so any errors are reported to the user instead of crashing the game, CStateManager checks if a CState is being pushed onto the stack, if it's not a CState it isn't allowed. The inheritance in my class module is used to have base classes with inherited values, whereas the SplashScreen in this example is just a class instance with modified public methods ( I know they're all public being Lua since we can't privatize them without a workaround with the standard class metatable )


It would still work extending instead of instancing but most states will not be even remotely similar so inheriting values we won't use wouldn't be wise.

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