Author Topic: Clear display of possible incoming warpgate attacks?  (Read 578 times)

Offline Asteroid

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Clear display of possible incoming warpgate attacks?
« on: September 19, 2019, 01:39:05 AM »
I don't think the most important mechanic in the game, gate waves, is well exposed in the UI. Hard for me to step in the things on your feet of a brand new player already, but it seems to me that the fact that waves come from those tiny buildings just isn't front and center.
(Already on Mantis, but I need feedback about the ideas presented.)
https://bugtracker.arcengames.com/view.php?id=21658

What would you think about having red, slightly animated arrows coming from enemy worlds that have gates, and pointing toward the planet they might attack? Those arrows' tooltip would tell you which unit mix might attack you from this direction, and whether a wave is currently incoming there.

I think gates could also be made a lot more prominent by scaling up the model so it's the biggest thing in the system, and some kind of visualization added inside the planet view of the wormholes the gate might send things into.

Lastly, I wonder if we could actually see the ships come out of the gate to attack you, instead of having them "slingshot" to the wormhole? It would definitely help mentally link the gate to the waves.

(I might tackle this, though I think it'll involve some work in Unity which doesn't motivate me much. But I want opinions first.)

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This kind of UI discoverability, BTW, can almost take away the need for a tutorial in a lot of cases. No need for a wall of text to explain warp gates if you can see their impact visually from the start of the game.

Offline I-KP

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Re: Clear display of possible incoming warpgate attacks?
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2019, 05:49:18 AM »
Maybe I'm misremembering but in AIW:FC didn't the warped in fleets start at the gate then traverse to the wormhole to make their assault? It was a long time ago. :)

I do agree that having giant blobs of ships suddenly splat onto your wormhole doesn't look super-great. Even if they just spread out like a normal fleet exit from a wormhole would likely look much better. Maybe there's a risk of ships being caught in a stack, but, you know, attacks from wormholes should be risky.

Anyhoo, I agree that a simple indicator on the Galaxy map (in addition to the notification thing at the top) would be helpful. Especially later on in the game.
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Offline Ovalcircle

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Re: Clear display of possible incoming warpgate attacks?
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2019, 07:33:06 AM »
Maybe I'm misremembering but in AIW:FC didn't the warped in fleets start at the gate then traverse to the wormhole to make their assault? It was a long time ago.
This behavior for waves is called "Cross Planet waves". This was a second way for waves to arrive, other than the default of instantly appearing from your wormhole. This option is also in AI War 2.
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Offline Asteroid

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Re: Clear display of possible incoming warpgate attacks?
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2019, 10:02:32 AM »
I do agree that having giant blobs of ships suddenly splat onto your wormhole doesn't look super-great. Even if they just spread out like a normal fleet exit from a wormhole would likely look much better. Maybe there's a risk of ships being caught in a stack, but, you know, attacks from wormholes should be risky.

Thanks for your feedback. Looks are not my main worry here, I'm focused on new players understanding the game.

 The attack coming as a giant blob is actually beneficial to gameplay otherwise waves would probably be way too easy to take out piecemeal. So if they came from the gate they would group-move to the wormhole first.

I imagine there might also be a perf reason to not make them traverse another system, especially if you have visibility on it. In this case instead of ships coming out you'd see a large beam of light connecting the gate to the wormhole it's sending ships into.