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 Post subject: planet special icons
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 3:24 pm 
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Techtonic instability

Image
128*128

Image
32*32

Minerals

Image
Image

Natural Tunnels

Image
Image

Starvation

Image
Image

Excentric Orbit

Image
Image
Image
(before black background)


Last edited by The Silent One on Wed Jan 17, 2007 10:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 10:09 pm 
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Of course, any icons are an improvement over no icons, so thanks for doing these. Don't be afraid to post work you're not yet completely satisfied with.

However since these are all planetary specials, i think the idea of showing a planet (as in mineral richness) is not always a good idea. Mineral richness for instance could be represented much more clearly by showing simply the mineral icon. Extreme mineral richness could be indicated by 2 or 3 mineral icons grouped together. The same pattern should work for any planetary special that simply increases a basic resource.


For the color, i would suggest something like this: (originally created for Wesnoth)
Image
The color for an individual special would vary between bright green (for very good) and bright red (for very bad). Very weak or evenly balanced specials would be more-or-less grey. This would allow good at-a-glance evaluation of specials.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 10:22 pm 
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eleazar wrote:
Extreme mineral richness could be indicated by 2 or 3 mineral icons grouped together.


Are there gradual differences in resource richness?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 10:44 pm 
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Well the semi quasi somewhat standard thing is to have a a small number of discreet grades, Very Poor to Poor to Average to Rich to Very Rich, occasionally with Ultra Poor and Ultra Rich or something... I don't know if FO is doing the same but it's a fair guess for those willing to listen to a talking mongoose (which, just fyi, you should never do, b/c there's no such thing as a talking mongoose...).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 11:17 pm 
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The Silent One wrote:
eleazar wrote:
Extreme mineral richness could be indicated by 2 or 3 mineral icons grouped together.


Are there gradual differences in resource richness?


There's no final list of planetary specials, but IIRC all the Orions had more than one level, and i have heard no-one suggest it was a bad thing.


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 Post subject: ...
PostPosted: Wed Jan 17, 2007 11:24 pm 
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eleazar wrote:
Extreme mineral richness could be indicated by 2 or 3 mineral icons grouped together. The same pattern should work for any planetary special that simply increases a basic resource.
...
The color for an individual special would vary between bright green (for very good) and bright red (for very bad). Very weak or evenly balanced specials would be more-or-less grey. This would allow good at-a-glance evaluation of specials.

There could also be semi-standard icon shapes, outlines or backgrounds. A circle might be good or neutral, a triangle a warning of bad or caution, a square good. Maybe a diamond or star pattern could be in there as well. The particular icon could have its particulars over top of the background, overflowing the edges...


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 Post subject: Re: ...
PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 2:47 am 
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Geoff the Medio wrote:
eleazar wrote:
Extreme mineral richness could be indicated by 2 or 3 mineral icons grouped together. The same pattern should work for any planetary special that simply increases a basic resource.
...
The color for an individual special would vary between bright green (for very good) and bright red (for very bad). Very weak or evenly balanced specials would be more-or-less grey. This would allow good at-a-glance evaluation of specials.

There could also be semi-standard icon shapes, outlines or backgrounds. A circle might be good or neutral, a triangle a warning of bad or caution, a square good. Maybe a diamond or star pattern could be in there as well. The particular icon could have its particulars over top of the background, overflowing the edges...

It could be that way, if it was important to use color for some other purpose. I would have like to use color to indicate the category of the special, but since some specials effect lots of meters, that won't work.
"Green=Good" is certainly more intuitive that "Square=Good"


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 Post subject: Re: ...
PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 10:19 am 
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eleazar wrote:
It could be that way, if it was important to use color for some other purpose. I would have like to use color to indicate the category of the special, but since some specials effect lots of meters, that won't work.
"Green=Good" is certainly more intuitive that "Square=Good"

The shaped backgrounds could and was meant to be in addition to colour, not to replace it.

That said, having all good specials be green might be limiting... Various icons might be odd-looking if forced to be green instead of their more natural colours. Having the icons be various colours would also make them easier to identify.

Perhaps the background could be coloured and shaped to indicate quality of the special, but the overlaid specific image / object could be of any colour.

Square = Good might not be obviously, but what about Circle = Good, Square = Neutral, Triangle = Semi-Bad (isoceles, wide base, like traffic warning sign) .... ?

Edit: also, it'd be good if the specials worked when shown smaller than 32x32, which is a fairly large size for an icon of this sort. Rather than a planet outline with a smaller graphic inside, the distinctive graphic should dominate, so that when scaled down, it's still the most prominent part of the icon...
Image


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 Post subject: Re: ...
PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 10:50 am 
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Geoff the Medio wrote:
Edit: also, it'd be good if the specials worked when shown smaller than 32x32, which is a fairly large size for an icon of this sort. Rather than a planet outline with a smaller graphic inside, the distinctive graphic should dominate, so that when scaled down, it's still the most prominent part of the icon...


I agree, most of the icons above don't work below 32x32, so I'll overhaul most of them.

Edit: new attempt at

techtonic instability
Image

Image

Image

Image

Obviously, the icon border is broken, but otherwise I don't see how image content can be made distinguishable at 16x16. Also, some color must be applied to make the icon stand out in front of the background, so I'd like to have the icon colored by the artist (meaning I concur with Geoff).

With color:
Image

Image

(maybe yellow-red would be better, thinking of magma)

Edit: no, still not happy with that. Next generation of icons:

Excentric orbit
Image
Image

Minerals
Image
Image

Natural tunnels
Image
Image

Slow Rotation
Image
Image

Solid Core
Image
Image
Image

Starvation
Image
Image

Techtonic instability
Image
Image


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jan 18, 2007 6:38 pm 
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Tidal lock

Image
Image

I'd appreciate some input on the icons. Do they carry over their meaning? Are they looking okay at 16x16?

... heck, I just realised that this icon is a :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2007 12:34 am 
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The Silent One wrote:
I'd appreciate some input on the icons. Do they carry over their meaning? Are they looking okay at 16x16?

Some of the features are a bit hard to see, including the arrowheads for slow rotation aren't clear, the surface opening / connection on tunnels, the arrowhead on techtonic, and the orbit line of eccentric.

I think 24x24 might be a better size to shoot for. 16x16 is just too tiny to make things clear.

Also, I wouldn't put too much effort into making specific icons for the specials in the text files now, which are just ones I made up without much thought. We should probably have a separate discussion about what sorts of specials, what degrees of specials, how many, etc., and reach some conclusions in that before actually writing semi-final specials (and spending lots of time on art).

Actually trying to make realistic specials is good though, as it better determines what does or doesn't work, and we can probably use anything that gets made for something else later.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2007 4:25 am 
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Geoff the Medio wrote:
The Silent One wrote:
I'd appreciate some input on the icons. Do they carry over their meaning? Are they looking okay at 16x16?

Some of the features are a bit hard to see, including the arrowheads for slow rotation aren't clear, the surface opening / connection on tunnels, the arrowhead on techtonic, and the orbit line of eccentric.

I think 24x24 might be a better size to shoot for. 16x16 is just too tiny to make things clear.

Also, I wouldn't put too much effort into making specific icons for the specials in the text files now, which are just ones I made up without much thought. We should probably have a separate discussion about what sorts of specials, what degrees of specials, how many, etc., and reach some conclusions in that before actually writing semi-final specials (and spending lots of time on art).

Actually trying to make realistic specials is good though, as it better determines what does or doesn't work, and we can probably use anything that gets made for something else later.

I agree with this.

As general comments on making icons i'd advise that the outline be considered as a major feature in the icon's identity.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 19, 2007 6:35 pm 
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The Silent One wrote:
Are they looking okay at 16x16?

Not at my resolution (1280x960). The look like little squares with a few colours.


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 Post subject: Re: planet special icons
PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2007 5:20 pm 
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I've revised some of the special icons minimizing details. Size is 24x24.
Feedback would be appreciated.

Solid Core Image

Techtonic instability Image

Tidal Lock Image

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 Post subject: Re: planet special icons
PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2007 3:04 am 
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The Silent One wrote:
I've revised some of the special icons minimizing details. Size is 24x24.
Feedback would be appreciated.

Solid Core Image

Techtonic instability Image

Tidal Lock Image


I'm not sure how obvious the concepts or (or if it is even possible to make them obvious) but the rendering style makes them more discernible.

You might need to use lighter colors or a light rim for these to be noticed against a mostly black background.

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