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Kazinsal
Dec 13, 2011




KillHour posted:

Behold, the one true answer to height indicators.



I think you should have at least some way to force a sub to surface that's maybe harder than using a specialized weapon but doesn't result in "I spent the last 20 minutes on this level and realized I'm screwed because there's a submarine I literally cannot kill because I chose the wrong loadout." Because that's annoying game design.

Unrelated to the main point, but that image makes me think that people need to stop entirely using green for "friendly" when paired up with red for "enemy". That second image is what happens for someone with red-green colourblindness (protanopia); literally can't tell what's friendly and what's not.

Blue makes a good substitute for green in that case, at least.

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kaffo
Jun 20, 2017

If it's broken, it's probably my fault

Kazinsal posted:

Unrelated to the main point, but that image makes me think that people need to stop entirely using green for "friendly" when paired up with red for "enemy". That second image is what happens for someone with red-green colourblindness; literally can't tell what's friendly and what's not.

Blue makes a good substitute for green in that case, at least.
Oh wow, case in point, I had to read this post then blow up the image to full size and look at all the triangles to notice they were actually different colours. I'm colourblind.

Rectus
Apr 27, 2008



al-azad posted:

Yeah, I honestly spent an embarrassing amount of time researching Hammer because Alyx has been making waves in the level design field but its features are exclusive to that specific game and then I realized all the SDK's are more or less exclusive.

It's dumb but Source 2 or Hammer 2 or whatever the gently caress it's called looks like the be all end all in CSG map making.

Note that the Source 2 Hammer does not use CSG at all, it's all polygon meshes now. Valve hasn't even released any SDK and isn't licensing Source 2 yet, but maybe they'll warm up to the idea now that everyone is excited about the new Hammer, and release something in a few years.


Here is a good Twitter thread on why the new Hammer is the only thing that's happened with level design tools in the last 15 years.
https://twitter.com/joewintergreen/...662025903128576

Ranzear
Jul 25, 2013



Kazinsal posted:

Unrelated to the main point, but that image makes me think that people need to stop entirely using green for "friendly" when paired up with red for "enemy". That second image is what happens for someone with red-green colourblindness (protanopia); literally can't tell what's friendly and what's not.

Blue makes a good substitute for green in that case, at least.

This is habitual for me even though I'm not even colorblind. Blue is better for healthbars too. I might just have a really strong dislike of green UI elements, especially bright green ones.

I watched BarbarousKing's playthrough of Hollow Knight over the last few days and he has deuteranopia. He had a hard time seeing the red spines on the green vines but could tell they were there once he was aware to look for them. Even weirder is he couldn't tell the orange infection blobs from the green acid pools he'd already encountered, so seemed to never even think the infection was a standout terrible thing when it appears in Crossroads and didn't recognize it had infected the snail dude and mosskin in that one place. More than once he pointed it out as green and it's interesting that an entire narrative concept got kinda dropped because it was color coded.

Ranzear fucked around with this message at 12:42 on May 29, 2020

Banemaster
Mar 31, 2010


TooMuchAbstraction posted:

[submarine stuff]

Random idea I had:

- Submarines have to go to periscope depth to fire torpedoes.
- Player can spot and shoot at the periscope to disrupt shooting.
- Submarines can only be damaged by normal weapons when periscope is up.
- Submarines have shadow on the surface. Closer to surface, larger the shadow.
- Shadow is also the hitbox, meaning that submarine that is closer to surface is easier to spot and hit.
- Submarine boss can surprise player by having normal sub sized shadow that just keeps growing and growing, until it finally reveals itself.

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

KillHour posted:

I think you should have at least some way to force a sub to surface that's maybe harder than using a specialized weapon but doesn't result in "I spent the last 20 minutes on this level and realized I'm screwed because there's a submarine I literally cannot kill because I chose the wrong loadout." Because that's annoying game design.

How would a sub be forced to surface if you have no weapons that can reach it?

In any case, the entire point of subs is to force the player to include more capability in their ship loadout, dedicating some space/mass to submarine weapons. There'll be a warning in the designer "Ship has no anti-sub weapons", which you are of course free to ignore. Subs also won't be required mission targets unless the mission is specifically about destroying subs.


Banemaster posted:

Random idea I had:

- Submarines have to go to periscope depth to fire torpedoes.
- Player can spot and shoot at the periscope to disrupt shooting.
- Submarines can only be damaged by normal weapons when periscope is up.
- Submarines have shadow on the surface. Closer to surface, larger the shadow.
- Shadow is also the hitbox, meaning that submarine that is closer to surface is easier to spot and hit.
- Submarine boss can surprise player by having normal sub sized shadow that just keeps growing and growing, until it finally reveals itself.

Yeah, this is the simulationist approach...the primary concern I have with it is, it's too subtle. Periscopes (at least, ones drawn to scale) are not gonna be noticeable given everything else that's going on in combat. Hell, they're hard to see in the real world when a single sub is the only thing anywhere around and you have spotters actively searching for them. Shadows are a good secondary option for indicating where a sub is, but due to natural variation in the color of the ocean I still feel like that's gonna be hard to spot.

I feel like it bears emphasizing that subs are not meant to be this big cat-and-mouse game. They're not even really meant to take up a lot of the player's time. They're a distraction that, if ignored, results in you taking extra damage from torpedoes (or later in the game, VLS missiles). They make big melees a bit more hectic. But once you realize they're in the area, you ought to be able to dispatch them pretty quickly; they have less health than a destroyer and pathetic armor.


Kazinsal posted:

Unrelated to the main point, but that image makes me think that people need to stop entirely using green for "friendly" when paired up with red for "enemy". That second image is what happens for someone with red-green colourblindness (protanopia); literally can't tell what's friendly and what's not.

Blue makes a good substitute for green in that case, at least.

Yeah, I default to blue/orange for friendly/enemy or safe/warning specifically for this kind of reason. I read awhile back that blue/orange has the maximum color contrast possible for human vision (least overlap in terms of photoreceptors activated), and it's colorblind friendly, so what's not to like?

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

Just as a follow-up, StealthyMoose from the Awful Jams discord suggested using a flat "ghost" effect, using a shader with no Z test. I'm pretty happy with that look:



It's easy to adjust how subtle it is, by changing the color/opacity of the shadow. At the current setting I think it's reasonably obvious if you're looking for it, without being obtrusive.

Discendo Vox
Mar 21, 2013

Nothing scarier than an artillery barrage -- Am I right?


you know you need a loch ness sub right

leper khan
Dec 28, 2010
Honest to god thinks Half Life 2 is a bad game. But at least he likes Monster Hunter.

Discendo Vox posted:

you know you need a loch ness sub right

Mechanical Nessy

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

Warship Gunner 2 (my primary inspiration) had a Great White Shark sub. So...you're not wrong!

Elentor
Dec 14, 2004








While working on my ColorHelper in Unity, I did a thing.



It's an RYB color system. It doesn't contain all possible colors in sRGB but that wasn't the intention anyway, I was trying to replicate some of the oldschool traditional color wheels.

Should be very easy to adapt to a 4-color wheel like NCS, but it's controlled just like HSL.

Edit: Here's a 4-color wheel:

Elentor fucked around with this message at 20:25 on May 30, 2020

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

So is the idea with that that you define "pure red", "pure yellow", and "pure blue" as, like, 3 arcs of the circle, and then you circularly (?) interpolate between them to define the rest of the colors?

Good Dumplings
Mar 29, 2011

Excuse my worthless shitposting because all I can ever hope to accomplish in life is to rot away the braincells of strangers on the internet with my irredeemable retardation.


TooMuchAbstraction posted:

How would a sub be forced to surface if you have no weapons that can reach it?

In any case, the entire point of subs is to force the player to include more capability in their ship loadout, dedicating some space/mass to submarine weapons. There'll be a warning in the designer "Ship has no anti-sub weapons", which you are of course free to ignore. Subs also won't be required mission targets unless the mission is specifically about destroying subs.

Done this way, there's no way to surprise the player; you can't ever have a moment like in the DLC missions of Ace Combat 7 where you suddenly must counter a threat your craft probably isn't made for, and moments like that bring a really exciting tension that can act as the centerpiece of a mission chain. You have tension from the unknown, a little fear if you know it's a target you can't easily handle, but when you're sure you have agency to still damage the target, that fear doesn't become frustrating. Indeed now it's a desirable feeling since it means the level design isn't predictable and you as a player feel badass for being able to handle the surprise.

On a more subtle note, making it so there isn't an emergency weapon that can attack any enemy type reduces the space for specializing a design towards a particular role: since you can't reliably go all anti-sub or anti-air/surface, as a player you'll likely always design ships to split weapon types, which means carrying all types of weapons, which then means creating a ship large enough to always carry that minimum set. There's less room for creating a really tiny but fast ship since that carries the usability hassle of going in and swapping its weapon types that a generalist hull would rarely encounter.

Tunicate
May 15, 2012





from a simulationist pov if the subs can stay down forever they're obviously snorkeling and that means you've got a surface target to hit

from a gameplay pov having subs basically use submerging as a temporary buff rather than their default state seems reasonable.

Elentor
Dec 14, 2004








TooMuchAbstraction posted:

So is the idea with that that you define "pure red", "pure yellow", and "pure blue" as, like, 3 arcs of the circle, and then you circularly (?) interpolate between them to define the rest of the colors?

Sorta, yeah. It performs operations in HSL. It performs 8 different transformations on the RYGCBM colors and interpolates between them.

BrokenGameboy
Jan 24, 2019


Dumb question. Since I'm making a 3d stealth game like Thief in Godot, I've been trying to implement leaning into my 3d character controller -- you know, so you can peek around corners. I created an animation for each direction (left, right), where the key frames rotate the player model some degrees on the the z axis. But the problem is this doesn't change based on what direction the player is facing, so you end up only being able to lean in two static directions. I feel dumb, but can somebody point me in a direction on how to make it so they player leans based on where they're facing? Thanks.

TooMuchAbstraction
Oct 14, 2012

Hubris

Fun Shoe

Good Dumplings posted:

Done this way, there's no way to surprise the player; you can't ever have a moment like in the DLC missions of Ace Combat 7 where you suddenly must counter a threat your craft probably isn't made for, and moments like that bring a really exciting tension that can act as the centerpiece of a mission chain. You have tension from the unknown, a little fear if you know it's a target you can't easily handle, but when you're sure you have agency to still damage the target, that fear doesn't become frustrating. Indeed now it's a desirable feeling since it means the level design isn't predictable and you as a player feel badass for being able to handle the surprise.

Yes, subs are not meant to be surprise/ambush ships, despite their historical use as such. They are a general-purpose threat, just like airplanes (which require dedicated anti-aircraft weapons to deal with). The player may still find themselves being surprised by mission events (at least, the first time they play the campaign), but I'm much more likely to do that via a boss that seems invincible until you discover its weak point. Or just having a boss pop up without being announced during the mission briefing. The first time you face the flying battleship, you're trying to accomplish a completely different objective when it shows up, and suddenly your objectives change. I sincerely hope I'll be able to instill a feeling of unease in the player because of the sudden change and the power disparity between them and their enemy.

quote:

On a more subtle note, making it so there isn't an emergency weapon that can attack any enemy type reduces the space for specializing a design towards a particular role: since you can't reliably go all anti-sub or anti-air/surface, as a player you'll likely always design ships to split weapon types, which means carrying all types of weapons, which then means creating a ship large enough to always carry that minimum set. There's less room for creating a really tiny but fast ship since that carries the usability hassle of going in and swapping its weapon types that a generalist hull would rarely encounter.

I'm not sure what you mean by "emergency weapon that can attack any enemy type".

I don't really envision this game supporting a wide range of builds / play styles. Ships will need to be generalist simply because you only get one per mission, and missions will have a mix of target types to deal with...you can of course choose not to bring anti-sub weapons with you, but then you won't be able to destroy subs, which may lead to you taking more damage than you can afford. My anticipation is that players will generally want to "do everything" in each mission (get a 100% kill count), and will build their ships to suit. The game will certainly let them know if they're choosing to forego important capabilities -- the ship designer has warnings about lacking anti-sub or anti-air weapons, as well as a warning for lacking any kind of attack capability at all.

The point of the customization, as I see it, is really for the player to have an equipment puzzle to optimize. You want to maximize your damage output, speed/maneuverability, health, and space for miscellaneous devices like radar/sonar and fire control. In order to do this you have to juggle a bunch of factors: how much does this weapon weigh? How easy is it to fit this bridge onto the deck? Should I go with a more streamlined hull that has less drag, but has a less convenient deck shape or a lower maximum displacement? I need more superstructure to afford the large radar, but that takes up deck space, but I can put some anti-aircraft weapons on top of the superstructure, so it's not entirely wasted...but it does mean I can't put as many big guns on because those can't go on top of superstructure. I've put so many large gun turrets in that now there's limited space in the belowdecks for my boilers and engine rooms. And so on.

Also, since I don't think I've mentioned this in a long time, it bears repeating: in the first third of the game the player can only use destroyers. In the second third they get access to cruisers, and in the last third, battleships. I'm pretty heavily committed to this at this point (the story's written around it, for one thing), so it's not likely to change. I'll be designing the missions with the assumption that the player trades up to the larger ship category when possible; they're a substantial jump in power. For example, the largest destroyer has a max displacement of 1800 tons; the smallest cruiser has a max displacement of 8000.

I can certainly imagine a game where the choice of what kind of ship to use would have more nuance to it, but that is not this game.

Anyway, thanks for the feedback and for giving me a chance to ramble on about my game.

Elentor posted:

Sorta, yeah. It performs operations in HSL. It performs 8 different transformations on the RYGCBM colors and interpolates between them.

Aha, that makes sense. Thanks for the explanation!

Omi no Kami
Feb 19, 2014




KillHour posted:

Behold, the one true answer to height indicators.



What's that from? I thought I knew all the neato UX-porn strategy games, but that screenshot doesn't ring a bell. Looks rad.

Edit: Oh right, Elite: Dangerous. Holy crap am I bad at 6DOF fighters.

Omi no Kami fucked around with this message at 22:25 on May 30, 2020

jizzy sillage
Aug 13, 2006



BrokenGameboy posted:

Dumb question. Since I'm making a 3d stealth game like Thief in Godot, I've been trying to implement leaning into my 3d character controller -- you know, so you can peek around corners. I created an animation for each direction (left, right), where the key frames rotate the player model some degrees on the the z axis. But the problem is this doesn't change based on what direction the player is facing, so you end up only being able to lean in two static directions. I feel dumb, but can somebody point me in a direction on how to make it so they player leans based on where they're facing? Thanks.

Instead of rotating on the z axis, rotate on the forward axis (that is, the vector that points the way the player is facing)

Chev
Jul 19, 2010


Switchblade Switcharoo

The really rad thing about the Elite radar is it was designed in 1984 for the very first game (and hastily at that, right before release) and it's still just about the best 3D radar ever 36 years later.

Chev fucked around with this message at 23:45 on May 30, 2020

Protocol7
Jul 26, 2012

Cyber Hellcat is not amused


Pretty sure the same style radar is used in the Battlezone games (98 and BZ2: Combat Commander specifically) and I really love those games. It looked cool because you had the wireframe topography map in the radar too.

Y’know, I’ve always wanted to make something like BZ2 eventually... and I just got a kickin’ rad new dev box...

Chev
Jul 19, 2010


Switchblade Switcharoo

Battlezone's radar is not quite as good in several respects. It only shows object elevation relative to the ground, not to the player, so you cannot tell at a glance whether a blip is above or below you, you need to combine info from their blip, your blip and the terrain topology to guess that, and for the same reason it doesn't give you the azimuth in the clear way Elite does. Both of those are especially important with a space sim's 6 degrees of freedom. Elite also uses logarithmic scale by default which allows you to both see farther and with more detail near your ship, while Battlezone is linear so you need to use zoom level to either get detailed or see far. Those details make a big difference in readability.

Chev fucked around with this message at 21:25 on May 31, 2020

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Corbeau
Sep 12, 2010

Jack of All Trades


Doesn't feel so significant these days... but I put in a few more hours on my game while trying to give my nerves a break. My ships are no longer spherical cows; they can have different shapes for the purposes of both collision avoidance and formation construction. Example:



Formation setup still treats every unit put in the same formation identically though, using the largest space required for all ships, so adding some fighter formations (which are larger spheres as far as the formation system is concerned) means even the long-but-narrow frigates spread out:



I guess it's acceptable. I don't expect people to group highly disparate units together during combat.

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