Arcen Games

Games => AI War II => Topic started by: x4000 on November 13, 2017, 03:32:48 PM

Title: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: x4000 on November 13, 2017, 03:32:48 PM
This one is a structural set of ideas, mainly a refinement of something I was already pitching before.  It includes some new graphics from Blue, with prerendered versions of the ships from close up on the left.  It does eat up some space, but overall very little, and with a properly-sized gui it should really help with the sense of theming.  Much like the distant view of the planets on the system map in TLF did.

(https://forums.arcengames.com/ai-war-ii/more-gui-thoughts-re-tooltips/?action=dlattach;attach=10800)

The images for most of the fleetships are ready and could be set to be used as soon as this tooltip setup is ready. 

(https://forums.arcengames.com/ai-war-ii/more-gui-thoughts-re-tooltips/?action=dlattach;attach=10802)

We also have full-bodied renders of the ships in a larger format that we can use for... something.  Promotional materials at worst, or some sort of in-game encyclopedia, or an alternative version of the tooltip that shows the full ship rather than just the slice like this mockup.

(https://forums.arcengames.com/ai-war-ii/more-gui-thoughts-re-tooltips/?action=dlattach;attach=10804)

Thoughts?
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: FalseMyrmidon on November 13, 2017, 07:18:21 PM
Moving some of the stuff that formerly would have been in the wiki to an ingame encyclopedia would be pretty cool.  Could also relieve the need shove so much info into tooltips.
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: x4000 on November 13, 2017, 07:39:42 PM
Moving some of the stuff that formerly would have been in the wiki to an ingame encyclopedia would be pretty cool.  Could also relieve the need shove so much info into tooltips.

I'm hoping that we can ultimately get pretty much the entire wiki into the game instead.  With the modding capabilities of the game, it's mainly going to be down to if players or someone else wants to help create those encyclopedia pages in-game, as they otherwise would do in the wiki.  We're providing the tools either way, and of course with something that is embedded in the game itself, the stats would always be exactly correct and never out of date -- even if you've modded the game, either adding or changing units.  So that would be pretty slick.  We just don't have the manpower to implement a full thing like that ourselves, though, so the hope is that we'll get some help on that front like people stepped in with the wiki for the first game.  That's the one downside of creating something so huge with just two coders. :)
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: Cyborg on November 13, 2017, 07:53:25 PM
It's getting there, although the black bordering looks weird with the pre-render on the left. Do you have some kind of space-themed bordering?
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: BadgerBadger on November 13, 2017, 08:45:31 PM
I'm not sure I'm sold on the pre-render. From the size of the image there, it's actually quite hard to tell what it is without having seen the whole picture.
Also it feels a bit too wide (especially for the stats at the top, it just looks weird with how stretched things are)
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: Blue on November 13, 2017, 09:51:30 PM
I'm not sure I'm sold on the pre-render. From the size of the image there, it's actually quite hard to tell what it is without having seen the whole picture.
Also it feels a bit too wide (especially for the stats at the top, it just looks weird with how stretched things are)

I think it could work when it's next to wording. I'm not sure the responsibility of recognition should be placed solely on the picture.
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: BadgerBadger on November 13, 2017, 09:56:14 PM
I couldn't tell what that picture was supposed to be a picture of until I saw the whole picture later on in the post.
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: x4000 on November 13, 2017, 10:19:33 PM
So we might need to zoom out a bit to show more of the ships, then.

As far as layout and the icon and text size, and certainly the background and border, that's all just temp blocking. Not actually graphics, no theming at all just three seconds to drag a messy rectangle on my end. It's basically pre-existing before it even gets turned over to a real gui designer.
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: FalseMyrmidon on November 14, 2017, 01:30:04 PM
Moving some of the stuff that formerly would have been in the wiki to an ingame encyclopedia would be pretty cool.  Could also relieve the need shove so much info into tooltips.

I'm hoping that we can ultimately get pretty much the entire wiki into the game instead.  With the modding capabilities of the game, it's mainly going to be down to if players or someone else wants to help create those encyclopedia pages in-game, as they otherwise would do in the wiki.  We're providing the tools either way, and of course with something that is embedded in the game itself, the stats would always be exactly correct and never out of date -- even if you've modded the game, either adding or changing units.  So that would be pretty slick.  We just don't have the manpower to implement a full thing like that ourselves, though, so the hope is that we'll get some help on that front like people stepped in with the wiki for the first game.  That's the one downside of creating something so huge with just two coders. :)

I'm a big fan of games not requiring external resources to play; although I recognize that this is not an achievable goal in many cases it's usually still worth trying.  What format do you envision this being written in (ie XML, JSON etc)?  What do you envision the submission process being? 


If your goal is that you be able to identify which ship it is from the image at the left of the tooltip, then it's currently too small.  If the goal is to add some flavor and help differentiate tooltips from each other then it probably works.  Comparing a few similar tooltips with different ships would probably help for comparison.
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: keith.lamothe on November 14, 2017, 01:36:12 PM
So we might need to zoom out a bit to show more of the ships, then.
Probably, but I think a more significant factor in this example is that it may be a bit like a partial portrait framed around the left side of someone's jaw, as opposed to framed around their eyes. The amount of face shown might be similar, but one fragment is much more intelligible than the other.

So the problem isn't so much "this doesn't look like an armor ship" as "I don't actually know what I'm seeing at all".

With the Armor Ship that may be a hard problem to solve (it kind of takes pride in being a solid slab of metal), though having at more of the ship's outer outline in the frame may help. Other ships probably have more distinctive elements.
Title: Re: More GUI thoughts, re: tooltips.
Post by: x4000 on November 14, 2017, 02:36:22 PM
@FalseMyrmidon: Basically all the tools are already there.  It's a mix of xml and C#, and the same sort of thing that Badger used to create the campaign savegame/load system, the find planets screen, etc.

@keith.lamothe: Good point, I probably picked the very worst possible example.