Data Manipulation Basics
In order to handle the complexities of every game system, the HL engine is a very sophisticated tool. However, we've invested significant time and effort to keep things as simple and streamlined as possible. The net result is that the Kit makes extensive use of a few powerful mechanisms that give you complete control over both how data is manipulated and when it is manipulated.
Given the volume of information involved in many game systems, data manipulation entails the proper sequencing of tasks. The first key mechanism is the evaluation cycle that governs when the data is manipulated. The second key mechanism is a fast and flexible classification system, called tag expressions, which uses tags to identify which objects are to be manipulated and which manipulations should be applied to them. The final key mechanism is the scripting language that allows the actual manipulation of the data.
Each of the above mechanisms is introduced in the sections below. An in-depth discussion of these mechanisms is provided in separate sections of the documentation.