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Network Messages to non-Tile Entities


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I've done a few network messages already, but every example I've found entails sending the network message to a TileEntity (or player). But some of my tile entity classes are getting really big and I'm starting to work on composition over inheritance and breaking out some of the behaviors into encapsulating classes that manage those behaviors. The problem that I have is that some of them rely on network messages. As far as I can tell, I don't think there is a way to send a message to a composition object without passing it through the tile entity first. I was wondering if anyone had any thoughts on best practices for handling this? There are two ways that I can think of: 1) the tile entity manages the state, sends and receives the message, and implements an interface that allows the composition object to request the state from the tile entity, or 2) the composition object manages the state, sends the message and the tile entity receives the message and passes it directly to the composition object.  The latter means less code in the tile entity, but doesn't feel very encapsulated. Since there's no requirement that the tile entity pass the message along, it's possible for that trust relationship to be broken. I'm leaning towards the former, but maybe there's something I'm missing?


A few concrete examples: I'm moving the machine processing loop (like a furnace) out of my tile entity. There are two network messages involved in this. The first is the processing state. Since the processing loop doesn't occur on the client (its just skipped), the server machine has to tell the client that it's processing. This information is used to change model textures. The second network message is the redstone option (ignore redstone, active on signal, active without signal). This is selected by the dialog on the client and then has to be passed to the server, which actually uses the information.



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Instead of using vanilla's update packet system for tile entities, you might want to create your own packet and handler for more flexibility.

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