Sorry for the title but i had to do it..
By now most of you surely had to choose how to create many different enemies, characters, items, etc.
As i saw so far there's two main ways of doing it, take enemies as instance:
First Way: You create an individual "Object Type" (sprite) for each enemy. Then you play with instances of these many object types.
Second Way: You create only one general/abstract "enemy" object type and then you individualize each enemy as different animations or animation frames of this general object type.
For example, you create an Object Type "EasyEnemies". Then from animation frame 0 to 6 you add all animations of enemy "spider". From frame 7 to 10 you add all animations for enemy "skeleton" and so for.
Then you spawn instances of this single object type at the frame that reference the enemy you want to spawn.
This second way is widely used in many tutorials and examples in C2.
For certain objects/sprites, like statics scenery, looks like a good way to go. Frame 0 is a rock, frame 1 is a tree, and it's easy to reference and spawn each sprite/object like this.
But what about complex objects/sprites, like enemies, or say, 7 player's characters?
If i add all enemies sprites in a single object type i would get a very "heavy" object loaded into memory, increasing loading time and, most likely, i could just want 6 of 20 enemies encapsulated in this single object type or "animation frame"method.
For all those 20 enemies as a single object type there's also each individual animation. And fear arise...
It terrifies me to go this second way for complex objects/sprites if i have to load and keep into memory so many sprites that i could or could not need in a certain moment or level. However i keep seeing people using this method for everything, from rocks and trees to all enemies and player's characters. So i'm starting to think that i'm missing something or i'm misunderstanding something.
Sorry for the wall of text but this is a major grey area that i never solved and never get enough info to feel safe using it freely.
Tell me your story, it will help me a lot! One Object type for many "enemies" or better keep'em separated each in it own object type and start developing the damn game?
Thanks dudes (and dudas).