What to do during turn processing?

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miu
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#31 Post by miu » Sat Aug 21, 2004 1:08 am

I agree that there has to be plenty of those splashscreens - we can get 50 of them in 0.3 easily:

-representation for each technology in 0.3
-planetary backgrounds pics
-we have renders of few races, some cityscapes + some other splashes

with shiprenders and techs coming in 0.4 - >100 is well in reach
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Geoff the Medio
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#32 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sat Aug 21, 2004 2:28 am

miu wrote: ... I like turn-processing screen to have peaceful atmosphere: You sit back, breathe, don't click a thing, observe the information on the screen and think about your next step as the progressbar grows. Having interactive screens there.. nawh, assuming turns won't take ages ...
How long does it take to qualify as "ages" ? Depending on whether or not manual combat control is enabled, and how much dead time is spent waiting for others to finish combats that don't involve you, you might be spending 5 or 10 minutes waiting between turns occasionally... Sitting back and breathing might get a bit dull after a while...
... you should do that more detailed encyclopedia and statistic browsing from UI's properly designed for those purposes.
Would these be the same UIs you'd normally use during the game, or would they need to be specially designed for the inter-turn waiting room?
Also we could make all this info customizable, but I dont think this is so big issue that players really care to finetune it - unneccessary options, wellthought set shuold be enough for most, modders do the for the rest.
I figure that if all the standard info menus are available, there's no need to make anything customizable... players could call up whatever info they'd like to browse just as they normally would... "customization" is built in... (though there's no reason an automatic background update couldn't be running as well)

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miu
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#33 Post by miu » Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:21 am

I see your point, I had my mind only in singleplayer. Having interactive stuff requires having a confirmation click by player before proceeding to next turn from waiting phase - which I would have wanted to avoid, but considering the benefits I can agree with having fully operational statistics and encyclopedia at hand.

How about if the interactive panel had three tabs - minimap+empireinfo, encyclopedia and statistics. And rather than being scalablewindows, have options to show as smaller only-neccessarities panel-mode and everything available fullscreen mode. The fullscreen windows would be exactly the same that you can access from normal gameplay, the empire-info tab would open as colony managment window -like the one in moo2 (expect you can't order stuff here - or maybe if it is possible/wise to do).
I had planned having statistics/encyclopedia as separate full-screen interfaces rather than windows on top of galaxymap - cant see much benefits to make them so as players dont want to see them all the time and its ugly :)
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#34 Post by pd » Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:45 am

we can get 50 of them in 0.3 easily
50 will be pretty hard in my mind, i think of having 50 when v1.0 is done.
-representation for each technology in 0.3
you need to consider that we will need many tech pics. this means we can't put too much work into the individual ones and make them very detailed. so that those tech pics might not be adequate for a wallpaper.
with shiprenders and techs coming in 0.4 - >100 is well in reach
again, ships will be rather low poly and might not be adequate for wallpapers.
And rather than being scalablewindows, have options to show as smaller only-neccessarities panel-mode and everything available fullscreen mode.
i like this.

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miu
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#35 Post by miu » Sat Aug 21, 2004 4:18 pm

pd: I would not worry so much about the polycount - knowing our artists styles so far, they will have much detail and I'm more worried about kicking you all(and myself) to do things quickly enough :) We'll see once the tech gets submitted and accepted and how things start flowing.
Specially if those wallpapers are going to be composed of few renders from different angles+ blueprints/wireframeshots + possible sketches +technobabble, little lowpolyness doesn't hurt at all.
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Geoff the Medio
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#36 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sat Aug 21, 2004 6:47 pm

pd wrote:
-representation for each technology in 0.3
you need to consider that we will need many tech pics. this means we can't put too much work into the individual ones and make them very detailed. so that those tech pics might not be adequate for a wallpaper.
That's assuming the tech pics will be fancy rendered-to-look-like-a-picture images... You could also do SMAC-like icons for the techs... perhaps even make them in a vector image format... (just throwing it out there)

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#37 Post by pd » Sat Aug 21, 2004 7:10 pm

You could also do SMAC-like icons for the techs...
yes, but this wouldn't be fun ;)

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#38 Post by Yoghurt » Sat Aug 21, 2004 7:59 pm

We could let the players browse each others' hard-disks. :twisted:

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Geoff the Medio
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#39 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sat Aug 21, 2004 8:25 pm

One word: PONG

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#40 Post by Impaler » Sun Aug 22, 2004 12:21 am

SMAC icons for Tecs = GREAT!! Their more easily modable and to me they are much better at identifying the tec and conveying its purpose then the spinning 3D objects used in Moo2
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Spinning icons

#41 Post by guiguibaah » Sun Aug 22, 2004 4:56 pm

Hmm - I got confused at quite a few of those icons - parhaps a combination of both?

You could have some small mini-games if the wait is that long... although I wonder if that would break the game's immersivenes. Maybe something like a FO Doom3. It shouldn't be that hard to implement.
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#42 Post by Geoff the Medio » Sun Aug 22, 2004 10:51 pm

From statistics thread...
miu wrote:... and I'm still for the option with cycling/random backgroundposters with a interactive panel on top of them. - just because this allows us to show player fancy and immersive stuff that he rarely would look otherwise.
So far the only reason I've seen given for why we should have this whole separate screen during turn processing is that it would be more "immersive". This point is quite debatable, however, and I really don't see how hiding the galaxy map from the player by showing a rotating series of rendered images will improve "immersion".

Various people have also suggesting having a minimap on the turn processing screen that shows the galaxy in miniature, allowing the plalyer to follow turn processing and fleet movments and such. I've yet to hear a good reason why this couldn't be done with the full screen galaxy map zoomed out.

Also, my suggestion of being able to give orders for the next turn while waiting for the previous turn's results hasn't really been discussed, except by noelte, whose concern I believe I addressed.

I have no objection to making encyclopedias and histrographs and whatever else available during the turn processing screen. However, I fail to see why doing so should require hiding the galaxy map (always, or by default). I also fail to see why any of these encyclopedias and histographs wouldn't be the same ones available at all time to the player, even when playing a turn normally, with the same UIs and everything else. If a player wants information in either case, the same convenient standardized UI should be used to get at it. Also, if the player wants to look a rendered image between turns, then they should probably be available in the encylopedia in an appendix. An option to replace the galaxy map would be fine by me as well, but I seriously doubt that most people would use it.

The minigame while waiting option is interesting, but also doesn't require hiding the galaxy map to impliment.

I don't think making a mockup will convince me... I need / would like to hear some reason why hiding the galaxy map and making separate UIs for between turns should be done at all. Citing "immersion" isn't enough, as some feel the proposed features would achive the exact opposite. If someone could do this, that'd be super-duper. Thanks.

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#43 Post by Satyagraha » Wed Sep 08, 2004 12:31 pm

instead of showing random info from the encyclopedia, we could also have an advisor giving you tips & info that are directly connected to what is currently happening on the galaxy screen. for example, if there is a virus outbreak on a planet, your advisor will tell you:

"We should send more troops to [planet name] to avoid anarchy until the virus is under control. Swamp planets have an increased chance of virus outbreaks, building medical centers will decrease the negative effects."

the galaxy map is still shown, centered on the planet. a pop-up window shows your advisor, another one shows rotating pictures, first the pic of the virus outbreak-event, then the swamp planet-pic, then the medical center. this creates more immersion and will give new players all the info they currently need to know between turns.

however, i agree that this should be a feature that can be turned off by advanced players. if it´s turned off, fleet movements should be shown (civ/smac), if there are no more fleer movements, the player should be free to do whatever he want (click specific planets for info, check stats and so on)

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#44 Post by muxec » Wed Sep 08, 2004 12:53 pm

Hm, how would it work with simultaneous move?

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#45 Post by Impaler » Wed Sep 08, 2004 4:59 pm

I think Geoffs core point about the obscuring/covering of the main Galaxy map is a good one, we dont need to fundamentaly alter the UI durring turn processing.

All we realy need is to have buttons for all the options that CANT be performed durring the turn processing phase to gray out after they confirm the end of their turn. The player can then engage in any of the remaining activities (be they usefull things like ship design or work on the next turn, a passive slide shows or PONG). As long as it dosen't affect the turn that was just submited then their no reason we need to limit said activity at all, they could engage in it ALL THE TIME! We need to assure that what ever is going on gets paused when its time for a battle though and that it can be returned too over sucessive battles or turns. So the question realy needs to be what can you NOT do after the turns submited.

The last thing we need to do is make it clear WHAT phase they are in, I would sugjest a combination of UI colorization and Music. After you confirm "End Turn" the UI goes into a special color to give a visual feedback and music changes to something different and perhaps more "mellow" and classical (what ever seems apropriate for a limbo state).
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