Here are some suggestions how the effects of a system blockade could be represented by the UI.
Features of the blockade are, as dbenage-cx summed up above:
- cuts off systems and planets from supply
UI representation: Supply lines around system are cut off and colors reversed. This sufficiently indicates that systems are cut off from supply; that planets cannot share their production while being blockaded should also be indicated. I suggest to add a marker to the planet panel (two attempts at such a marker on the mockup below). Since it is possible that multiple empires blockade a planet at the same time, there should be a tooltip which provides information on which empires are participating in the blockade.
- blocks starlane entries (for blockaded fleets)
UI representation: So far only the red color of the eta marker hints at the blockade of starlane entries. I believe this is too subtle, so I suggest that when a blockaded fleet is selected, movement dots are tinted red when the fleet is trying to move through a blockaded exit. Also, an eta marker could be placed at the system's exit, maybe reading "1" or "x".
Also, there should be an indication who is blockaded and who is blockading whom:
- if a player fleet is blockaded, it receives a red outline. a tooltip will provide information which empire is blockading it. Since multiple empires may block the player, the outline should always be red.
- if an enemy fleet is blockaded by the player, it will receive an outline with the color of the player's empire.
- blockades between two empires unrelated to the player will show as a grey outline around the fleet btn of the blockaded side.
Below is a quick&dirty mockup that illustrates some of these ideas. At Qar'To ß, the player = bright blue empire is blockaded by dark blue empire, but blocks the yellow empire. Trying to move "south" produces red movement dots and an "x" eta marker at the system exit.
suggestions for new UI to show a blockade
- colored outline around fleet buttons for blockaded fleets
- graphic on planet image for blockaded planets
- red movement dots when trying to exit through blockaded starlane entry, red eta marker at system exit
- tooltips who participates in blockade
If I provided any images, code, scripts or other content here, it's released under GPL 2.0 and CC-BY-SA 3.0.