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<  Ideas and Suggestions  ~  Suggestions on HUD and Art direction.

Posted: Sun Dec 07, 2008 12:48 am Reply with quote
Joined: 30 Nov 2008 Posts: 3
Well I've been logging in and out of the game and one day got into a long conversation about the game. but a few points i want to put out that need to be fix if this game wants to grow.

The look:

ok a few things that need to be fixed. the characters are fine, the guns are fine, but the map is ugly. i know you have the many diffrent dirt and stuff, and when them game first starts out its fine. but after 25mins of deforming the land everything looks bland, that's cause the gun uses the same texture every time you add dirt, eventually everything starts to look the same. this makes it hard to find your place and a bit confusing.

so it seems like the game uses something similar to meta balls in a 3d program, so that means the textures just blend together which means you can't have crisp edges between textures. if anything i would suggest doing something like having the texture change depending on high or some thing. either way the single texture when you deform will not work.

The HUD:

ok so this is also related to the look of the game. you see the guy i was talking too mentioned there aren't any land marks in the game for people to direct and communicate with. if someone wants to tell some one about a sniper its not easy to tell someone else where he is. to fix this one idea would be to have coordinates someware on the hud for people to use, a compass would also help in this situation.

actually the compass would be very useful, you see if your underground and looking for a way out its really hard to find out where your going, plus you need to know which way your going and if your going in the same direction you were going or if you ended up turning around.

i main issue so far is just getting around the game, you have to be able to tell where you were, and where your going. and tell others as well in a team match. fixing these can really help the game.
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Posted: Tue Dec 09, 2008 12:18 pm Reply with quote
Developer Joined: 04 Apr 2007 Posts: 136 Location: Stockholm, Sweden
You address several issues that we've been aware of since somewhere in the beginning of this project, but unfortunately we've had no luck in finding good solutions to them. Most of them are things that players are used to having in regular shooters, but cannot be applied to this kind of game in a straightforward way.

No matter what we do we would end up with a heavily distorted landscape after those 25 minutes of deforming. Our best workaround is that we try to have shorter timelimits on our servers so that the map changes or restarts before the map becomes so too much distorted. This however, does not work when playing CC or CR since the time to a restart can vary alot depending what the players do.
We have also included the ability for players to at any time use the console voting system to vote for map restarts or a map "blur" which smooths out everything on the entire map.

The dirtgun uses a different texture for the two teams, but ultimately the map will end up with a soup of the two textures mixed in with a few fragments of indestructible terrain. This is something I consider alot when creating the maps. I try to throw in several distinct features of the landscape with some of the harder terrain and several pieces of indestructible terrain to act as landmarks.
We have thought about having players choose which texture they wanted to use for their own dirtgun. This would give some more variety to the look of the distorted map, but it would still just be a soup of unrecognizable terrain due to the somewhat random nature of the sum of all player choices.

Dirt texture affected by height, now that might actually be something worth testing. The variance would be fixed and instead of a complete random soup we could end up with a semi-layered soup which may or may not give a slight better overview.

Crisp edges between materials is highly doable, as that is what we started with. It looks really ugly though, so our programmer spent lots of time implementing blending support for the algorithms building this kind of deformable world. So the blended textures is definitely the desired look.

I'm not sure that raw coordinates would give so much more information, most of the maps are spherical so although regular coords already exists in the game, they make little sense to most players. To see what I mean you can try it by starting a server, enter sv_cheats 1 in the console followed by cg_drawcoords 1.

What we really would need would be a 3D compass that makes sense on spherical surfaces. I could picture a wireframe 3D view of the general shape of the planet combined with the radar with dots that are darker if they are on the far side of the asteroid relatively to your position. The problem comes when trying to assign some kind of coordinates or numbers to this compass/radar. We would have to have numbers in three directions, this is doable and could be understood by most players, but we would also need to spin the compass to match the current orientation. Reaching a point on a spherical map from dot A to dot B could be done by either first going right and then to the left, or going straight and then to the right. You would end up on the same point but with different orientation. This would cause the numbers/coords dials to spin around alot and will probably end up confusing the player more than helping.

That being said, we would still really want to try and have some sort of 3D compass, or atleast experiment with different types in hope of finding something usable. Currently we don't have any time to try this or any other development for that matter. We are only 3 people working on this and everyone is busy with other things at the moment.

PS. when you are underground, fastest way out is always straight up. If you can't go straight up, try dig in steep upwards angles and you'll be out real soon Smile

Daniel Wikell
Game Design, 2D art and the rest of the stuff that noone else does
Celestial Impact
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Posted: Sun Dec 14, 2008 8:03 am Reply with quote
Joined: 30 Nov 2008 Posts: 3
i'm a little of a 3d artist my self, if it helps at all i could give (or receive) a few concepts for the the compass and model it my self. though i can't guarantee that i could have it done soon if it helps i'll do my best Very Happy.

there could be a method that doesn't necessarily have to be a sphere but can't be a radar, i'd have to draw it out to see if it could work though. but the idea could be very user friendly...

and about the texture, would having the texture diffrent per character or change over time periods be a solution?

also about the under ground thing i was also talking about sneak attacks too ;P.
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Posted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 5:54 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 02 Apr 2009 Posts: 10
digitalwolf333 wrote:

The HUD:
actually the compass would be very useful, you see if your underground and looking for a way out its really hard to find out where your going, plus you need to know which way your going and if your going in the same direction you were going or if you ended up turning around.

I think its kinda hard to have a compas when the areas changing all the time Confused
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