confusing text

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Conker
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confusing text

#1 Post by Conker »

When I was looking through the tech tree I found it a little confusing. The information about what the technology does was long and unclear. I couldn't figure out what most of the tech was supposed to do. A lot of it seems to have no use whatsoever but descriptions that make them seem like revolutionising discoveries. Also the descriptions for the effects of buildings had me reading them several times to understand them. They probably need to be rewritten to be easier to understand
it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are,
the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer
be at the rghit pclae.

muxec
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Re: confusing text

#2 Post by muxec »

I think most tech descriptions in v0.3.13 are temporary placeholders.

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Geoff the Medio
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Re: confusing text

#3 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Search the forums a bit and you'll find numerous discussions about this. The short answer is that we'll get to it. The longer answer...

Many of the techs are theories, that don't actually do anything besides unlocking other techs. The main description text is just fluff, or flavour text, that describes the fictional setting or basis for a theoretical field of knowledge. There are no in-game effects to describe for theories, except that they unlock something. There's no way to figure out what these techs do from the descriptions, because there's nothing to figure out.

There is a line in the title bar of the description panel, below the name and cost / turn, for theories that says "(Category) Theory - Theorietical Prerequisite" for theories (with (Category) replaced as appropriate) but for applications says something like "(Category) Application - Improves Mining". If you look at a few techs, or read an appropriately-written few lines of explanitory documentation, it should be clear that the theories don't do anything themselves but applications and refinements do. As I've written a few places around the forums, apparently this line isn't useful though, so needs to be moved into the main description box for people to notice it.

For applications, there's a mix of autogenerated and hand-written descriptions. Have a look at Mining Engineering, for example. Below a few lines of flavour text, there is a fairly clear hand-written description of the tech's effects. Below that, after an "Effects" heading, is an autogenerated description of the effects, which is hard to read and understand compared to the hand-written one.

Eventually all techs should have hand-written descriptions, but this takes a lot of time, and the tech tree is bound to change a lot, making too much effort to write them a bit of a waste. Probably the effects descriptions also need to be above tohe flavour text.

So, descriptions would consist of:
* A first line that says "(Category) Theory - Theoretical Prerequisite" for theories, "(Category) Application - (three-word description)" for applications or "(Category) Refinement - (three word description)". (three-word description) is like the "Improves Mining" for Mining Engineering or "Unlocks Building" if the tech has no direct effects but unlocks something.

* An "Unlocks: " heading, followed by clickable links to techs and buildings the tech unlocks, or "None" if nothing is unlocked.

* An "Effects: " heading, followed by "None" or hand-written description of the effects, similar to the one for Mining Engineering. Nowhere would autogenerated effects tech be used.

* A "Background: " heading, followed by the flavour text / fluff.

Actually doing this requires significant time, though. And until the tech tree is nearly finalized, it's difficult for me to justify spending too much time on it if I could be working on something else.

Since you've complained / suggested changes, feel free to take it upon yourself to rewrite the existing tech descriptions to place readable effect descriptions before background, which would probably do a lot of good towards making things easier to understand, so people don't try to interpret fluff flavour text as in-game relevant information.

muxec
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Re: confusing text

#4 Post by muxec »

Is there a GUI tech editor for those without raw XML love?

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Geoff the Medio
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Re: confusing text

#5 Post by Geoff the Medio »

muxec wrote:Is there a GUI tech editor for those without raw XML love?
No, but the techs aren't defined using XML either. And the descriptions are just text in the stringtable, aside from a bit of formatting. Pro tip for stringtable entries: preformatted text (has linebreaks where you want them) should be enclosed by ''' on either side.

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Conker
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Re: confusing text

#6 Post by Conker »

I've edited my english language file and it is easier to read now. Mostly I just deleted "then" a lot. How would I share the new file with everyone?
it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are,
the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer
be at the rghit pclae.

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Geoff the Medio
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Re: confusing text

#7 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Attach a zipped file to a forum post, or edit the eng_stringtable.txt on the wiki. If editing the wiki or you want it considered for updating the SVN version, don't remove, add or rename any strings from the SVN version.

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Conker
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Re: confusing text

#8 Post by Conker »

It seems I have to do more editing than I first expexted. It may take a little longer.
it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are,
the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer
be at the rghit pclae.

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Geoff the Medio
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Re: confusing text

#9 Post by Geoff the Medio »

Please make sure you're using the SVN version of the stringtable. Although, since v0.3.13 just went out, it should be pretty close, now that I think about it...

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