Author Topic: Mech Visibility  (Read 1432 times)

Offline ptarth

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Mech Visibility
« on: February 17, 2016, 10:49:54 PM »
Would an increase in mech visibility be desirable? The simplest method would be to put a colored ring around the mech. Either of a specific color or dependent upon the mech choice. Attached is an image of such a change. It is a trivial mod, just make a ring of color and stick it on top of the stacked image of the mech.

I also think that the familiar drones need some work.
  • Remove all familiar hitboxes
  • Shrink them all to about half their current size
  • Rebalance as necessary.

Module Second System
  • Currently most/all modules have a secondary short-ranged burst AOE in addition to their primary function. Not very many people are excited about them.
  • Replace them with a los restricted auto-targettng and auto-firing short range weapon.
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline Hearteater

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2016, 12:01:59 AM »
I'm not sure that I'd favor a hard edged mech marker. It suggests that it might be the hitbox and seems likely to cause confusion in newer players. That being said, a circular health bar would be nice, especially with segments. That might suit the purpose without making it seem like a hitbox. An alpha'd color cloud (like Warcraft 3 hero colors) might also work well.

Familiars: Yes, yes, and yes.

Modules: The more restrictive the additional shot, the more interesting. Examples: Added grenade launcher (bounces and explodes explodes), mine launcher, and such. If it just plain adds damage, you forget about it. Auto-target generally just adds damage, as do boring sprays/shots that just go out and do nothing special. If it is going to be a simple damage add, something interesting like "Emulator" that doubles your normal shot actually more interesting (ignoring the exact dps) than a static new bullet. Especially if the two shots both shoot at +/- 5 degrees so you no longer have a straight ahead attack.

Offline Cinth

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2016, 01:48:52 AM »
Going to add a point about player controlled weapons.

Controllers only have so many buttons and a lot of them are already used up.
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Offline Logorouge

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2016, 01:56:59 AM »
Would an increase in mech visibility be desirable?
I think their visibility is already good. (And that's coming from the guy that plays with a dark grey mech. :P) What would help it further in my opinion, is reducing the visual noise and potential distractions. That's why I love your idea about shrinking the drones size. Those big chunks of metal constantly spinning around you can be distracting. Plus, that might be a good opportunity to make the Basic Drone slightly less super effective and allow its cost to drop a bit. On the other hand, auto-firing weapons and drones tend to add to the chaos and make matters worse. That's one of the reasons I had to stop using the Tagteam Drone, it's just too distracting! I'm just not a big fan of auto-fire in general.

Offline ptarth

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #4 on: February 18, 2016, 02:01:36 AM »
Misery is doing a revamping of the secondary weapons, consumables, and drones right now. I'm loathe to actually do any massive changes there other than to nag him about it via posting in the forum.

re:Hearteater
Can you get me an image of what you were thinking for the health bars. I think I know what you are doing and am trying to get started on the basics. If you could get a confirmation image that would help me out.
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline ptarth

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2016, 06:29:09 AM »
So were you thinking something more like the attached image?
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline Ayrix

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2016, 01:26:16 PM »

re:Hearteater
Can you get me an image of what you were thinking for the health bars. I think I know what you are doing and am trying to get started on the basics. If you could get a confirmation image that would help me out.
like boss health bars for the Touhou series after 12.8, I assume.



Offline Hearteater

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2016, 02:21:28 PM »
Actually, I was thinking way more segments to the point they didn't match up with health. Here is a quick and dirty edit of your original.

Offline ptarth

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2016, 03:10:08 PM »
Hmm. Did you do that by hand or do you have something automated?

The way I'm doing it now is having 1 image per bar length, so 10 images exist for the current 10 bar design. With a high density situation like your example, we are looking at a ton of images. On the bright side I have the code written now to automate production and I can write the code that will automate the xml. However, I don't know if its good for the engine to have all those extra images to deal with. No idea. There might be more efficient ways of adding this straight to the source code as opposed to filling it with conditional xml statements.

(Some fine tuning also has to occur, the health circle has a shadow (and reflection), it rotates with the movement of the mech, and there are some alpha issues for some reason in the image as well.)
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline Hearteater

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2016, 03:49:26 PM »
I did this in Paint.Net by hand. Drew to perpendicular lines, copy, rotate 5 degrees, paste old image into new layer and merge. Repeat but rotate the new image containing 2 sets of perpendicular lines 10 degrees, then 20 degrees, then 40 degrees, then touch up. So 72 total segments.

The ideal method is to create a single image and then use a shader to do draw it with radial occlusion. I didn't test it, but this answer on Stack Overflow should be close to the code needed for the shader. I'd probably add a color component so I could colorize the image as the health got lower. I don't know the details of what shaders would work in Starward Rogue, but I'm happy to write one for radial occlusion of a sprite if they are interested.

Offline ptarth

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2016, 04:11:00 PM »
  • That is a quite sensible method.
  • Here is the prototype for what you thinking, I think?
  • I think shaders would be better for this, but its out of my depth.
  • There is also the question of: does anyone actually want this?
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline Hearteater

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #11 on: February 18, 2016, 04:18:26 PM »
If you've got a mod that works I'd love to try it. It really is something I need to experience to make a judgement on. If it passes that test, we can look into prettying it up and a possible shader solution if there is interest.

Offline ptarth

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2016, 04:36:14 PM »
Here you go.
There is an off by 1 problem with the exactly layer being show. I can't tell if it is <= or < or > or >=. But it should be sufficient to give a feeling of how it works regardless.

The nice thing is we can change most of it rather easily, and then auto-generate the rest.
Note: This post contains content that is meant to be whimsical. Any belittlement or trivialization of complex issues is only intended to lighten the mood and does not reflect upon the merit of those positions.

Offline Misery

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Re: Mech Visibility
« Reply #13 on: February 18, 2016, 08:04:38 PM »
Something I would suggest for boss health bars:  Have them segmented, but not in an arbitrary fashion.  Instead, do it by the point of form change. 

Cave tends to do this in their games, and I've always found it a very useful function.  You can see, at a glance, how much longer it is until the boss pops and switches to their next phase, whatever that may be.  A vertical mark is always placed across the health bar at the exact point where the next phase/form change will occur.

I cant imagine it'd be that hard to code; it'd just be looking at the HP values of each phase and marking the appropriate spot on the overall bar.


As for mech visibility:  No big circles or anything, not happening.  WAY too confusing.  People are going to think that's where the actual hitbox is, particularly since in games with bullet hell elements, hitboxes actually are often shown (but usually as glowy spots at the exact point of the center of the hitbox).  It'll just make things seem kinda wonky and may also prompt bug reports.