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# [Guide] Linear Flow and a Slider

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Perhaps you'll need some basic understandings of a flow beforehand, but since this post will mainly handle "Linear Flow", I hope I can go through it directly.

Everyone will know that there is a "flow" between a slider and a circle, circle and a slider, or even between a slider and a slider.

Since flow is a broad notion that generally state one's cursor movement, it is possible to have diverse flows per player even the pattern being completely the same. That is, there is an area where flows function as a subjective concept.
Mainly "curved flow" are the ones with a subjective concept I'd say.

Take the following pattern for example.

When playing this kind of a rotation pattern, most people will move their cursor in a circular form with no pause momentum that causes any flow break.

Although the sliders are only a fragment of a circle, the way the pattern is mapped quite requires player to take an imaginary "circular flow", even though the actual placement isn't done like that.

This is how AutoPlay flows, and how the pattern is actually placed. But people don't play that way.
So, a curve flow allows people to generate their own flow by using one's imagination.

Unlike such situation, there are also cases when a pattern contains only one fixed flow which can normally done by "linear flow". It is an effective way to express sliders that flows smoothly while being played the same as how it should.

## Linear Flow

So what is a linear flow? Pretty straightforward; the ideal flow between the slider end and the following object being 0 transition in the flow. Refer to the following image to get the concrete idea.
Even the provided example was a pretty obvious linear flow combined with a linear slider, remember that it is also possible for curved sliders too.

The ideal flow is exactly the same as how the pattern is meant to be played according to the AutoPlay. It is an effective way to express a visually stable pattern when there wasn't much musical difference between (1) and (2) I'd say.

## Slider Blanket + Linear Flow + Square

Since we've took a look on the basic concepts of a linear flow, we can move on to something more interesting along some other techiniques.

Provided we have a slider blanket, 1) adding an additional note the forms a linear flow with the slider 2) and then placing an additional circle that fits the distance snapping between those 2 notes form a regular square.

To prove the relation, I will explain once again.

We've got a circle, and an 1/2 slider that is blanketing that circle. (For convenience, I've used a bezier slider which the end is heading vertically downwards.)
With the same spacing of the current (1,2), I've placed an additional note below (1) while following the linear flow. Since I've made the slider shape convenient, we just have to place it only vertically down.
If you followed the steps properly, you would get (1), (2) and (4) mapped. According to the above image, placing an equally spaced object between those will lead to a square automatically.

This means, if the blanket is perfect, rotating the slider end and the circle by 90 degree will found the perfect linear flow after the slider.
There are 2 blankets, 2 regular squares, and 2 linear flows.

Founding a perfect blanket also lead you founding the perfect linear flow after the slider. Hope you feel founding a perfect blanket wasn't meaningless last time.
Not a bad article if you're talking about easier maps, but you're making an assumption that the player is not playing a high level map where a player is pretty much forced to let go of a slider early. While a slider can indicate direction, a lot of the sliders at higher level are release halfway through or even earlier, making the rest of your slider feel like noise (more items to clutter the screen). When worrying about actual slider flow, you should be using somewhere a bit after the effective leaving point of the slider and compare that with the position of your next note.

If you're mapping for visible flow of how the spectators should see your map, having sliders point to the next note is great, but that does not hold true while playing.

(There are other problems brought in if you include high sv cases, slider art, and distance vs sv proportionality, but those aren't topics that most ppl need to care about)
Topic Starter

#### blissfulyoshi wrote:

Not a bad article if you're talking about easier maps, but you're making an assumption that the player is not playing a high level map where a player is pretty much forced to let go of a slider early. While a slider can indicate direction, a lot of the sliders at higher level are release halfway through or even earlier, making the rest of your slider feel like noise (more items to clutter the screen). When worrying about actual slider flow, you should be using somewhere a bit after the effective leaving point of the slider and compare that with the position of your next note.

If you're mapping for visible flow of how the spectators should see your map, having sliders point to the next note is great, but that does not hold true while playing.

(There are other problems brought in if you include high sv cases, slider art, and distance vs sv proportionality, but those aren't topics that most ppl need to care about)
Thanks for mentioning that.

Guess I haven't wrote some "actual" flow matters which goes along slider leniency stuffs in the main post. However seems you've got the point here enough. The main point here is about "visual flows" and that was why the main article was using the term of an "ideal flow" well which seemed inappropriate seeming from your post haha.

True the higher diff players care about slider leniency when playing, but I feel it is a different story that could be dealed in another topic. (which I'm not 100% familiar with x,x)