Part 9: (Experimental) Hit Regions on HTML Canvas

In this video, part 9 of a series on the HTML Canvas element, we look at Hit Regions--an experimental feature which will greatly simplify the processes for handling hit detection on HTML canvas in the coming years.

Warning: the feature covered in this post is experimental technology--it cannot safely be used in any browsers at this point (but will be available at some future date). To test this feature, you must turn on experimental canvas features in your browser.

Sample Code

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en">
  <meta charset="UTF-8">

  <canvas id='canvas' style='border: 1px solid; width: 800px; height: 600px;'>
    Sorry, your browser does not support the canvas tag.


    // Cache a reference to the html element
    var canvas = document.getElementById('canvas');

    // Set the drawing surface dimensions to match the canvas
    canvas.width  = canvas.scrollWidth;
    canvas.height = canvas.scrollHeight;

    // Get a reference to the 2d drawing context / api
    var ctx = canvas.getContext('2d');

    // ----------------------------------------------------
    // Draw quadrant and define hit region
    // ----------------------------------------------------

    ctx.arc(150, 150, 100, 0, Math.PI / 2);
    ctx.lineTo(150, 150);
    ctx.addHitRegion({id: 'quadrant'});

    // ----------------------------------------------------
    // Draw triangle and define hit region
    // ----------------------------------------------------

    ctx.moveTo(400, 50);
    ctx.lineTo(500, 250);
    ctx.lineTo(300, 250);
    ctx.addHitRegion({id: 'triangle'})

    // ----------------------------------------------------
    // Add mousemove event listeners
    // ----------------------------------------------------

    // Listen for mousemove events
    canvas.addEventListener('mousemove', function(e){

      // If e.region is set, then the event occurred over
      // one of our defined regions (contains the region ID)
      if (e.region){
        console.log(e.region + ' is hit!');