[SDL] SDL event behavior

Michael Alger sdl at lists.rapacity.dyndns.org
Tue Jan 14 02:16:01 PST 2003

On Mon, Jan 13, 2003 at 08:16:16PM -0800, Chris Thielen wrote:

> I was wondering if this is normal behavior, and how should I get
> around it?

> First, I have key repeating enabled. In my input code, I poll the
> input, check for SDL_KEYDOWN, and if a key is down, I check to see if
> it's SDLK_LEFT, if so, I rotate this ship on the screen.

> This works great. HOWEVER, if I hold left, it starts rotating left,
> then press right, while still holding left, it begins to rotate right.
> This is all fine, however, when I lift up from the right key, while
> still pressing the left key, it does not continue rotating left as it
> should.  I have to completely lift my finger off left and press it
> again to get left rotations again.

> This is not the behavior I want. Is this a bug in SDL? Shouldn't it
> continue to say the left key is pressed when while I'm still holding
> it?

It's not a bug; pressing another key will interrupt the key repeat for
the first key that's down.   This is true everywhere -- try it out any
place where you can type text.  Hold down a key: aaaaa, then hold down
another key: bbbbb, then release the second key: <nothing>.

The usual way of handling input for games is to disable key repeating,
and just catch the KEYDOWN/KEYUP event and use a flag to keep track of
the state of the key.   You then do the sprite movement outside of the
event handler code based on what controls are currently being applied.

Typically, this is done using a bitfield to save memory.

For example:

#define KEY_LEFT    (1 << 0)  /* you can also count in powers of two */
#define KEY_RIGHT   (1 << 1)  /* yourself here, but i find this more */
#define KEY_UP      (1 << 2)  /* readable. YMMV. */
#define KEY_DOWN    (1 << 3)

int keys = 0;

while (SDL_PollEvent(&event) > 0)
  switch (event.type)
    case SDL_KEYDOWN:
      switch (event.key.keysym.sym)
        case SDLK_LEFT:   /* set flag to indicate left arrow is down */
          keys |= KEY_LEFT;
        case SDLK_RIGHT:  /* set flag to indicate right arrow is down */
          keys |= KEY_RIGHT;
    case SDL_KEYUP:
      switch (event.key.keysym.sym)
        case SDLK_LEFT:   /* clear left arrow flag */
          keys &= ~KEY_LEFT;
        case SDLK_RIGHT:  /* clear right arrow flag */
          keys &= ~KEY_RIGHT;

if (keys & KEY_LEFT)
  /* rotate ship "left" */
if (keys & KEY_RIGHT)
  /* right ship "right" */


Hope that's clear enough.
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 189 bytes
Desc: not available
URL: <http://lists.libsdl.org/pipermail/sdl-libsdl.org/attachments/20030114/4d729e6d/attachment-0008.pgp>

More information about the SDL mailing list