Author Topic: Suggestions  (Read 44639 times)

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sillytuna

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Suggestions
« on: November 16, 2012, 05:13:33 AM »
Now that most people have got Eufloria HD, what suggestions do you have for improvements or, dare I say, a distance future sequel?

q00u

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2012, 04:45:55 AM »
So, I just spent the night and the morning playing both the Classic and the HD versions. Here are my impressions:

GOOD:
  • I like that I can drag around the map now. In Classic, I would use the scroll-wheel to constantly scroll out, which would reorient the view. The new way is better.
  • I like that I can speed up the game now! BIG improvement!

BAD:
  • No color-blind mode? :-( Previous version had symbols in the asteroid to indicate the owner. Please bring that back! Right now, I have no idea if the asteroids next to me are going to fight each other, or if it's one AI that's going to stomp me. It makes the game extra difficult.
  • The interface seems to require many more steps in order to accomplish the same tasks as in Classic. This is cumbersome.
  • No tooltips? What does this button do? I have no idea. The interface should be self-explanatory, and sometimes that explaining comes in the form of tooltip popups.

MISC:
  • No Tab-to-display-asteroid-summaries? :-( This was a nice feature in Classic.
  • There does not appear to be a short-cut to display the range limit. One must try to move a seed or go into the terraforming menu in order to see how far we can reach. Why not hold down shift or spacebar?
  • Pathfinding leaves a lot to be desired. Often I see seeds trying to use an enemy planet, even though a safer friendly planet is nearby. There's no way to manually set the path. (To be fair, Classic has this same problem.)
  • I have to detach a flower in order to use it on the asteroid where it is growing. Same as in Classic, but meh, cumbersome.

Based on these impressions, I have the following suggestions.
  • Please utilize right-clicking more!
    • Currently, to send an exploratory seedling to a planet, you must go into send-mode (by clicking, or dragging), then left-click the destination planet, then right-click. However, with a planet selected, right-clicking on another planet does nothing! It could easily send one seed. Much faster!
    • In fact, right-click could be the catch-all for the "set destination" command. In addition to sending exploratory seeds, it could just as easily be used to send flowers/laser-pods. With flower/laser-pod selected (even if it's still on a tree), right-click on a destination planet to detach it and send it on its way. MUCH EASIER!
    • Rally points! Currently, you select a planet, select to Rally, select destination, click OK. Those last two clicks could easily be combined into a single right-click!
  • Speaking of rally points:
    • There is no rally-and-send command. If I am rallying seeds, it is often because I want a lot of seeds at the destination. A rally-and-send command would set the rally point AND send all current seeds to the same destination immediately. My suggestion: SHIFT-right-click
    • There is no rally toggle. I can turn rallying off, but to turn it back on with the same destination, I have to go through the whole setup again. See, often I just want to temporarily stop rallying seeds. I need seeds to terraform, or to defend, but once that's done I want to continue. That same button that turns rallying off could be used to toggle rallying on and off. Right now, clicking it turns rallying off. My suggestion: When you go to rally again, that button comes back; clicking it turns rallying back on for the previously used destination.
    • Finally, my biggest suggestion: RALLY AND REDIRECT. Currently, rallying sends newly grown seeds to a destination, but incoming seeds just stay there. Sometimes this is fine, but if I'm pushing into enemy territory, and I have all my asteroids rallying to the front line, and the front line changes, I have to re-rally EVERY ASTEROID. It's do-able, but so cumbersome! If there were an option to rally-and-redirect, so both newly grown seeds AND incoming seeds are both sent to the rally point automatically, this enables so many strategic advantages! I only have to rally the previous front line to the new front line, and all my seedlings go there. PLUS, if (oh no!) I LOSE an asteroid, I only have to stop the previous asteroid from rallying to the now-enemy position. PLUS! THIS LETS US FIX THE PREVIOUSLY MENTIONED PATHFINDING PROBLEM! Now we can rally to specific asteroids and set our own path! It really improves so many things. My suggestion: SHIFT-click on the Rally button to enable rally-and-redirect. This has the advantage of being easily used with shift-right-click rally-and-send.
  • Pie-in-the-sky suggestions:
    • If you're enabling SHIFT-stuff (shift-clicking does alternative action; holding down shift shows range/asteroid summaries), there are LOTS of things you can do!
    • Holding down shift, in addition to showing territory range and/or asteroid summaries (why not both?), changes the button icons for actions that have alternate functions (such as rally-redirect). TOOLTIPS would help here as well!
    • SHIFT-drag selects multiple asteroids at once. Easily rally/rally-move/rally-move-redirect multiple asteroids to a single destination. That would be awesome.
    • SHIFT-dragging off an asteroid enables Classic-style movement (eg, selecting how many by dragging, rather than HD style selecting around the circle). Although, I'd rather Classic-style movement be an option in settings to tell the truth.
    • SHIFT-click plants all orbiting/growing flowers as one type. Although, it's not terribly difficult to repeatedly click the same button.

Long story short, with these suggestions the game could be efficiently played with three fingers. Left-click, right-click, shift button. Easy! For non-computer platforms (iOS/Android), remember that they are multi-touch! Two buttons on the side, where the player's thumb might be, brings all the needed functionality.

Edit: Oooh, just thought of another one, again about rallying (can you tell I like the rally function?  ;D ) RIGHT-click on the rally button to choose what to rally(/redirect). As in, JUST super-seeds, or JUST regular seeds. Note that this does not interfere with the SHIFT-click to rally-and-redirect, and to do both is SHIFT-right-click on the button.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2012, 04:57:29 AM by q00u »

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sillytuna

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Suggestions
« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2012, 05:11:52 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions. You probably haven't seen the relevant post so for those that don't know, this is a prerelease. The control system has not yet been set up for advanced players and won't be until we do a full release. We'll read over any suggestions before implementing more control systems :)

Colour blind mode - eufloria is a bugger for this. We're not planning to do anything specific but I'll look at any easy suggestions.

The routing - this has already been discussed to death I'm afraid! There are good reasons why it's like it is and there is no doubt that's it's a sort of flaw in the overall game. Any time we look to change it, you get more problems and/or make the game more complicated which we don't wish to do. Should there ever be a sequel, this can be looked at again from scratch. However, changing now breaks too much. Trust me, I pushed hard on this and kept coming up against walls.

Final thing - we have to keep eufloria appealing to a wide audience, and we also have to keep it working on every interface known to man. This brings certain limitations, not least in terms of managing the various versions with little manpower. For this reason alone, we won't be going OTT on control systems. It's actually really complicated, and this eufloria wasn't designed for anything by joypad in fact. It took a lot of work to add touch and then a lot more to add mouse/keys. As it is, joypad needs rewriting. It's an evil, nasty bit of code which takes weeks not days.

Thanks for the feedback :)

Bonobo

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2012, 07:36:09 AM »
What q00u writes.


Also: PLEASE add these:

• React to command+q—IMHO an absolute must.

• Allow to command+Tab (App Switcher) also in full screen mode, if only after having pressed escape to pause the game.

These are essential in the use of a Mac and I can’t imagine why these have been left out.

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sillytuna

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Suggestions
« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2012, 07:55:48 AM »
I can answer that one. The mac version was being done literally an hour before bundle release!

Pre-release reminder guys! It's just the iOS port working on mac etc ;) The full version is 6-8 months away.

Bonobo

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2012, 08:38:17 AM »
I can answer that one. The mac version was being done literally an hour before bundle release!
OK, but how should we know about your future plans and how much you really know about OS X essentials? ;) Therefore I’d rather mention that stuff instead of keeping quiet and just hoping.

Greetings, Tom

sillytuna

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Suggestions
« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2012, 01:48:47 PM »
Keep the suggestions coming; just explaining why things are yet to be mac-ised/control systems for example. If something isn't there, suggest it, but if you ask why it isn't there I'll probably say 'pre-release' ;)

Also, if anyone has similar stuff re: Linux that'd be good to know. I know very little about that platform and haven't seen the game running on it at all.

sillytuna

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« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2012, 01:52:16 PM »
Oh, the app switcher - if this isn't there it's most likely to be due to a graphics context issue in all platforms which can cause crashes on some video cards.

The cmd-q - I can ask for this if another build is done soon but I think that's unlikely unless a nasty bug turns up (still a bit concerned about retina displays in full screen).

roidal

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2012, 03:40:45 PM »
If you zoom out it would be cool if you have on the PC the same behavior than on Android-devices, Seeds becomes dots, Flowers and pods are represent by symbols to get a overview.

And i think two limitations on terraforming are to much. IMHO it would be better if there is only a limit of for example 80 seeds, but you can decide by your own how you invest it. 50 Energy AND 30 Speed for example.

Maybe Artefacts should be random-generated on levels and give you some special abilities in the current game. IMHO its not interesting to collect artefact's if the only behavior is to fill a "View Artefacts" list :)

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spywhere

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2012, 05:10:41 PM »
I don't know much about modding (or map making) but if you can make a visual-editor for eufloria map that'd be awesome...
But yeah, that'll take a lot of time in making just one feature...

Hotkey for each command would be great too. Like if you want to send just press this key, etc.

[self.sillytuna setLuck:@"good"];  // :P  I just learn Obj-C for a while
Euroflia : Online graphic Eufloria level editor now temporary dropped...
http://sdcenter.ispace.in.th/euroflia
http://sdcenter.zoka.cc/euroflia

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sillytuna

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2012, 03:22:45 AM »
If you zoom out it would be cool if you have on the PC the same behavior than on Android-devices, Seeds becomes dots, Flowers and pods are represent by symbols to get a overview.

That's controlled by the Level of Detail setting.
 

sillytuna

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2012, 03:26:20 AM »
I don't know much about modding (or map making) but if you can make a visual-editor for eufloria map that'd be awesome...
But yeah, that'll take a lot of time in making just one feature...

We definitely won't be doing an editor. However, since the levels are just Lua scripts it would be perfectly possible for someone to make an editor which generated the scripts.

Quote
Hotkey for each command would be great too. Like if you want to send just press this key, etc.

Yes I agree. I think we should look at allowing binding of keys to commands - this would be done through a controls.lua script or something.

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[self.sillytuna setLuck:@"good"];  // :P  I just learn Obj-C for a while

You know more Objective C than I do!

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2012, 05:28:46 AM »
We definitely won't be doing an editor. However, since the levels are just Lua scripts it would be perfectly possible for someone to make an editor which generated the scripts.

There were a few of these around - I know I made a very basic one in VB.Net, I think there was a C++ one somewhere - there was even a custom map that made custom maps (mapception?).

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q00u

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #13 on: November 19, 2012, 06:26:34 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions. You probably haven't seen the relevant post so for those that don't know, this is a prerelease.
We know! Haha, that's why I'm saying all this now, while there's time to change things.

Quote
Colour blind mode - eufloria is a bugger for this. We're not planning to do anything specific but I'll look at any easy suggestions.
Classic had a fairly good solution to this, eg, the team symbol in the center of the asteroid.

Quote
The routing - this has already been discussed to death I'm afraid! There are good reasons why it's like it is and there is no doubt that's it's a sort of flaw in the overall game. Any time we look to change it, you get more problems and/or make the game more complicated which we don't wish to do.
I'd rather rally-and-redirect be added, then routing could be handled by the player themselves.

Quote
It's actually really complicated, and this eufloria wasn't designed for anything by joypad in fact.
I had forgotten the console version! I haven't played it, I'm afraid. Does the PC version work with a joypad? I'm curious how it plays.

Even so, all of my suggestions combined only amounted to the addition of two modifier keys, which could be bound to any unused joypad keys to get the same effect (shoulder-buttons would be ideal).

The final version is still a long way off, so please take the time to consider it.

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sillytuna

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Re: Suggestions
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2012, 07:33:06 AM »
Classic had a fairly good solution to this, eg, the team symbol in the center of the asteroid.

We'll consider that then. Is that really enough to make the game work enough for colour blind people? I had assumed too much use of colour was made on seedlings etc to even consider it.

Quote
I'd rather rally-and-redirect be added, then routing could be handled by the player themselves.

Very aware about this one but it's not going to be added. There are too many ramifications and I already went down that path and had to back up. In fact, at one point I even rewrote the routing code to deal with some existing issues but there were side effects, and it changed the game a bit (which means levels need to change etc).

However, if there is ever a sequel, the whole routing stuff would be considered afresh for sure. It's a very legitimate a criticism. It it makes any difference, I had the same view as you so if I could have done it and made it work, I would have!

Quote
I had forgotten the console version! I haven't played it, I'm afraid. Does the PC version work with a joypad? I'm curious how it plays.

The PC version will work with a joypad in future because of Steam users as much as anything. If you're playing on a tv, a joypad may be the best option. I'll stick to touch/mouse myself but Rudolf and Alex did a great job getting it to play on a pad.

Quote
Even so, all of my suggestions combined only amounted to the addition of two modifier keys, which could be bound to any unused joypad keys to get the same effect (shoulder-buttons would be ideal).

Haha, it always sounds so easy until you come to implement things! I'll never promise anything but I'll always look :)

General game dev comment, which goes double for a game that already exists:

There is another aspect to control systems which people forget. You can add all the controls you want but they are no good if people don't know what they are. We have to do a different help system for each control set, have to find a way to show the controls to the users, and then have to be sure that we're not doing lots of work for a tiny handful of people. If we localise, we have to translate the controls. We have to test everything with each control set, and we have to test each help message. Potentially in every language. On every platform you support it on. And then you find a bug, like a button doesn't work on some Macs or whatever.

Something that sounds simple one minute can easily turn into a few weeks work the next. Since we don't have an unlimited amount of time, we have to prioritise.

This is part of the cruddy, dull bit of game dev.

Going back to controls, as long as something is already supported in the underlying code, if we can expose it to Lua configuration then that should although for them to be modded or customised. That's currently my preferred plan, although there will definitely be a more advanced mouse control mode and joypad controls supported. And, indeed, possibly touch controls for touch PCs. Supporting all these will be a nightmare enough!

EDIT: I don't think I can do this but if I find it possible for mods to add support for e.g. custom beacon trees or new entities, then I'll support them. The issue there is the ever depending rabbit hole of modding support, and how deep do we want to go. This may be stuff best left to a sequel, where I think we'd support hefty modding from the start, and an editor. And multiplayer.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2012, 07:38:07 AM by sillytuna »