Hey, just found Screen Monkey... it's really nice, and it's great that the Lite version allows you to try before you buy. I'm considering buying it, once I playtest it a bit more.
There are a few areas where it could improve though.
It's kind of a bummer to have to interrupt play to switch maps and move the minis around when you hit the edge of the map. You get the same problem with real minis on a table, but in software you should be able to make it scroll and expand in all directions without bound.
1. The capability to plop down multiple maps in the GM map area and align them/ overlay them. (expanding in all directions).
2. The capability to define a viewing rectangle in the GM area that defines the rendering window sent to the client. This would allow the GM to somewhat control map bandwidth, as well as allow for seamless scrolling for the clients....with these two features the party can explore in any direction and not have to screw around with redoing the map each time you fall off the edge. The viewing rectangle should be able to be dragged around by the GM, which would also allow the GM to jump between multiple areas.
3. Along with #2 above, allow the GM to set a background fill. That way the GM can simply keep sketching on the edge of the map and slide the viewing area around with the map as he draws it. It's a pain to have to prep maps ahead of time.
4. The GM should be able to scale the view for the players. (zoom in/zoom out.) It's less critical than the above features, but very useful for large battlefields.
The above features can be implemented by using graph-based data structrures and algorithms, and rendering a view.
Some other suggestions:
Would like to see improvements to scaling capabilities. Being able to set a scaling factor for all icons or for each icon object would be very useful. (when playing d20, icons need to be scaled to the proper number of squares, and when playing other games such as 1st and 2nd. ed. AD&D or shadowrun which are not grid based, the map scales tend to jump around a lot and it would be nice to be able to quickly scale things.
Would like to be able to rapidly switch between different scenes, maps, and areas to accomodate visual aids (pictures for reference scenes), flipping to the campaign map, or larger city map for player reference, and dealing with split parties. Features 1 and 2 above would allow for this.
Player icon upload.
Seperate directories for player character icons and npc icons. Would rather not have the players seeing the monster graphics up front.
64-bit version ..makes loading a bunch of images in memory less of a space management problem since more than 2gb is available to the process.