Better Galaxy-map stars

Development of artwork, requests, suggestions, samples, or if you have artwork to offer. Primarily for the artists.
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eleazar
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#16 Post by eleazar » Wed Oct 04, 2006 12:53 pm

Geoff the Medio wrote:
eleazar wrote:I hesitate to ask, "what other uses?"
If we had a star surrounded by a Dysonsphere or Startree, it wouldn't necessarily have a halo. Black holes might look best with slowly spinning accretion discs and no halo. Neutron stars currently do, but might look better without halos.
I hadn't thought about black holes. A halo wouldn't make visual sense there, so i drop the idea of halos indicating mouse-over or selection. What in the world is a startree? Google had no definitions.
giant pink bear wrote:In this case you would display a fainter/smaller/thinner version of the system selection indicator around the mouseovered system. Then if the player clicks on the system, the indicator 'solidifies' into its full state.
Exactly
Geoff the Medio wrote:
I also wonder about pd's system selector. It's cool, but stylistically it doesn't seem to have anything to do with the current UI. Is it left over from an abandoned redesign of the UI?
I think he just made something that could be used now (then), not really worrying about how it fits into the overall scheme. It will almost certainly need replacing at some point.
Just make sure the selection and mouseover use 2 different graphics, and artists can easily test and share their improvements.

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Geoff the Medio
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#17 Post by Geoff the Medio » Wed Oct 04, 2006 1:28 pm

eleazar wrote:What in the world is a startree?
A Dysonsphere-like (stellar) orbital forest. I suggest reading Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons. (After the three preceeding books in the series.)

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#18 Post by Daveybaby » Thu Oct 05, 2006 9:50 am

Geoff the Medio wrote:Does your desk chair have a faint picture of you sitting painted on it...?
If it did it would probably get almost as much work done in a day as i do.
The COW Project : You have a spy in your midst.

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eleazar
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#19 Post by eleazar » Thu Oct 12, 2006 3:07 am

Can someone explain how a neutron star would (or at least conceivable might) look different from a "normal" star? A quick Google and Wikipedia search didn't reveal anything useful. Since they are a dying star might they be surrounded by a cloud of blown-out gas? Or be dimmer?

If there's nothing else, i'll make them green. It's rather lame to have star catagories discernible by color except for neturon stars which currently repeat colors used by other stars.

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Geoff the Medio
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#20 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sat Oct 14, 2006 3:10 am

A neutron star would probably just look like a very small, bright white star... though it could also have an accretion disk and axial jets. For FO, I wouldn't worry about what one would *really* look like, but instead just do something disctinctive from the regular stars. I'm not keen on green for neutrons... IMO they should be bluish, and perhaps black holes can be tinted greenish on the map. Some previous neutrons that I really like looked like this (by BreadMan):
ImageImage

They also rotate really fast, so if there's some animation, that could be used, hopefully not distractingly.

Varying star brightness too much on the map probably isn't a good idea. We need to be able to see all the stars clearly and distinctly...

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eleazar
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#21 Post by eleazar » Sat Oct 14, 2006 8:15 pm

I recently noticed that FO's "normal" star types roughly correspond to the basic spectral types of main sequence stars. The continum that goes from big, blue, bright, hot stars —to— small, red, dim, cold stars. The color indicates the FO type name.
  • Blue = O, B
    White = A
    Yellow = F, G
    Orange = K
    Red = M: particularly Red Giants /Super Giants
I've experimented with adding this range of size and brightness to the star types and it looks promising. The fact that it's more realistic is not on it's own compelling, but in this case a dash of realitiy makes the stars more usable and more interesting.

I'm hesitant to put too much work into it while i'm hoping the the cores and halos can be separeated into separate files in the relatively near future. Currently the stars are limited to 128x128, which is plenty for the largest cores, but i'd like the halos to go beyond that.

*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts. I agree with these goals:
Geoff the Medio wrote:• I wouldn't worry about what one would *really* look like, but instead just do something disctinctive from the regular stars.
• We need to be able to see all the stars clearly and distinctly...
However, your ideas how to implement them don't accomplish your stated goals.

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#22 Post by tzlaine » Sat Oct 14, 2006 8:20 pm

*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts.
It's always better to attack the post than to attack the poster.

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eleazar
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#23 Post by eleazar » Sat Oct 14, 2006 8:48 pm

tzlaine wrote:
*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts.
It's always better to attack the post than to attack the poster.
It's not meant to be a personal attack. If i tried to contribute some code, and it was bad, and you told me i had no instinct of programing, i wouldn't consider it a personal insult. People have different skills.

Graphic-design/art/illustration is a field where nearly everyone believes that they are qualified— to a much higher degree than any other occupation in my experience.
Anybody has the right to an opinion on something visual, like the have a right to an opinion weather a game is fun, or a book is interesting. But that's a far cry from having the knowledge to understand what one of these things lacks, and the ability to explain how to make it better.

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Geoff the Medio
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#24 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sat Oct 14, 2006 8:59 pm

eleazar wrote:I recently noticed that FO's "normal" star types roughly correspond to the basic spectral types of main sequence stars. The continum that goes from big, blue, bright, hot stars —to— small, red, dim, cold stars.
This is a reasonable assumption to make, as older galaxies in FO have more red stars and real red dwarfs are the longest-lived stars, whereas red giants are short-lived stages during large-star death.

It might be nice to have both red giants in addition though, as they are particularly interesting and notable... If you can make the appear distinct, it might work.

I suspect we don't need to distinguish between neutron stars and smaller-mass white dwarfs.

Brown dwarfs might be interesting to add, though...
I agree with these goals[, h]owever, your ideas how to implement them don't accomplish your stated goals.
I'm not sure which ideas you're referring to...? My previous post was a mixture of speculation about what a neutron star would "really" look like, and what it could look like in game. The latter amounted to a) it should be blue, b) animation could be used if it doesn't suck, and c) varying star-brightness on map might be bad. I'll accept your claim that varying brightness does work (ie. the stars are still clear even if dim). The other points don't fail to address the "goals", so much as they are tangential comments that don't even attempt to address them...
tzlaine wrote:
*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts.
It's always better to attack the post than to attack the poster.
He did both, didn't he?
Last edited by Geoff the Medio on Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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tzlaine
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#25 Post by tzlaine » Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:00 pm

eleazar wrote:
tzlaine wrote:
*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts.
It's always better to attack the post than to attack the poster.
It's not meant to be a personal attack. If i tried to contribute some code, and it was bad, and you told me i had no instinct of programing, i wouldn't consider it a personal insult. People have different skills.

Graphic-design/art/illustration is a field where nearly everyone believes that they are qualified— to a much higher degree than any other occupation in my experience.
Anybody has the right to an opinion on something visual, like the have a right to an opinion weather a game is fun, or a book is interesting. But that's a far cry from having the knowledge to understand what one of these things lacks, and the ability to explain how to make it better.
Look, I know Geoff has a pretty thick skin, and maybe it's no issue with him in particular, but are you really taking the position that
*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts.
Isn't more personally-oriented than strictly saying
However, your ideas how to implement them don't accomplish your stated goals.
? The latter gets the difference of opinion across in a neutral way, whereas the former makes the difference of opinion look like a defect in the other person.

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eleazar
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#26 Post by eleazar » Mon Oct 16, 2006 4:50 pm

tzlaine wrote:Look, I know Geoff has a pretty thick skin, and maybe it's no issue with him in particular, but are you really taking the position that
*sigh* You've got bad visual instincts.
Isn't more personally-oriented than strictly saying
However, your ideas how to implement them don't accomplish your stated goals.
? The latter gets the difference of opinion across in a neutral way, whereas the former makes the difference of opinion look like a defect in the other person.
I didn't limit the "attack" (if you choose to see it as such) to the ideas in the post, because my aim was to discourage Geoff from posting his speculation on how things should look. I appreciate it that he takes the time to reply to my posts. I'm not denying he can make valuable contributions in other areas. (i'd personally consider it a valuable contribution if he coded something to support separate star cores and halos) But there's no point in sharing his preference for star colors or ideas for the appearance of a star-selection reticle. He's posted enough that i'm confident that's not his strength. It's been my observation that he has thick enough skin to handle such a comment.

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#27 Post by LithiumMongoose » Mon Oct 16, 2006 6:40 pm

eleazar wrote:He's posted enough that i'm confident that's not his strength.
... Ouch. Heh.

I don't mean to get in the way here Zach so I'm just gonna say this then disappear again... I sympathize with Eleazar. I really do. There are plenty of times (with FO and everywhere else in life) when I have to bite my tongue from saying something like that, not out of wanting to attack the person but out of sheer honest conviction in the position of the statement. And I've been right most of those times too, imo. One nice thing about being in charge of a business, you can be as ruthless, blunt, arrogant and bossy as you want (assuming you get results of course).

Unfortunately, with any sort of operation where you're not in charge, however right you may be, making that sort of statement is a bad idea, just from a practical standpoint and not bringing any other considerations in at all. It's also bad *regardless* in a public project, since people aren't being paid money to stay and are thus more likely to leave if they don't like the atmosphere. Geoff may not mind personally, but I could see other people reading this very-public thread and having their enthusiasm for FO as a whole dampened by it.

Like I said before, I do sympathize. I appreciate all the energy Eleazar is clearly putting into this project lately. And everyone is of course free to say what's on their mind. But I at least have found that being patient, persistent and *diplomatic* is often more effective, almost never less effective, and generally a lot less risky.

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#28 Post by Moriarty » Mon Oct 16, 2006 6:49 pm

Yea, let's fire tzlaine and find someone more "talented".
heheh
j/k of course. ;)

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eleazar
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#29 Post by eleazar » Mon Oct 16, 2006 11:36 pm

This has become a much bigger deal than i intended. I'd suggest if anything else needs to be discussed beyond general forum policy, it be done via PM.

As a general comment, the friendly atmospheres of projects i've known, usually involve something to shield artists from those who don't really understand the art aspect of a game. People like giving their opinions on art, which can be nice. But at one point on the Wesnoth forums, comments by those who had no clue outnumbered everything else 10-to-1. It was very difficult to get anything done. This kind of thing doesn't happen in music or coding (for some reason people are much more likely to realize when they don't understand coding or music). However it does tend to happen in game design. This project apparently believes that having everyone give their opinion on everything isn't the best way to get things done — thus the secret 0.4 forum.

I don't like the closed forum solution, but if work is going to be accomplished, there needs to be a way to manage the signal-to-noise ratio. Currently FO doesn't even have consistant moderation by someone who does art.

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#30 Post by pd » Tue Oct 17, 2006 10:58 am

Okay, let's calm down everyone. I don't think eleazar wanted to insult anyone. Actually I can put myself in his position very well and second most of what he said.

I'm not aware of a secret 0.4 forum though.

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