Author Topic: User Interface suggestions  (Read 7996 times)

ExtremoPenguin

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User Interface suggestions
« on: February 06, 2013, 06:17:47 PM »
Hi. I have been doing some more work on may space ship themed roguelike (Galaxy of Rogues), and would like any suggestions on the interface I have been working on. The interface is going to be text based, but I am planning on adding more modern features such as mouse selection (although everything will be accessible using keyboard only). Here's an image of what I have so far:



The left portion is the map (obviously). The upper right is a minimap which will display the major features in the nearby area. Upper middle is a "quick info" box which shows information on your currently selected target. The lower right is the game log. There are a few things I still need to add like a scroll bar for the game log and the map will support per character colors/highlights. Detailed information (such as your character screen) will act like a popup window over the top of the main window.

Any one have some suggestions for additional features or changes? I will make the code available once it is more complete so more general requests are welcome.

Nymphaea

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Re: User Interface suggestions
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2013, 09:29:26 PM »
The display confused me for a bit until I realized it was space. (note to self: read :P) I'm assuming the '.'s are non-visible areas? And the '*'s flames or something from movement?

It looks nice, main problem I see is the lack of a status section, with your current shield/hull/etc stats. Maybe put it under the target/minimap, taking up a bit of the log's space. It should probably also have coordinates, as that seems like something a space game would definitely provide you with. Maybe right under the minimap in the "Status" section. As much as a second window could work, with a scrolling log, what's the point?

Off topic though, game looks interesting :P What's the goal/gameplay of the game like?

EDIT: Another idea I just thought of, maybe ad a blank line at the top like most traditional roguelikes, for simple log data(Just use "Hits! (19/6/20/17)" for damage) and have tabs at the bottom right for changing between status, log, etc for the bottom right(then would be middle right I guess) which would be more multipurpose. Would kind of make sense for ships, it would be like a computer screen, you switch between which info you're looking at.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2013, 09:40:25 PM by Nymphaea »

Omnomnom

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Re: User Interface suggestions
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2013, 10:04:33 PM »
Cool idea looks good. I second displaying the player stats though and also the stats of enemies, or at least the targeted enemy. I mean sheilds:weak hull:damaged doesn't tell me how much more damage the shields or hull can take in order to make decisions.

ExtremoPenguin

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Re: User Interface suggestions
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2013, 01:06:06 AM »
Thanks for the suggestions.

The display confused me for a bit until I realized it was space. (note to self: read :P) I'm assuming the '.'s are non-visible areas? And the '*'s flames or something from movement?

Your right about the .'s (although I am not sure if it will stay that way). The *'s are your velocity and heading.

It looks nice, main problem I see is the lack of a status section, with your current shield/hull/etc stats. Maybe put it under the target/minimap, taking up a bit of the log's space. It should probably also have coordinates, as that seems like something a space game would definitely provide you with. Maybe right under the minimap in the "Status" section. As much as a second window could work, with a scrolling log, what's the point?

Good point that some basic info about your own ship should be visible at all times. I think a good way to do this would be by putting some text in the corners of the map (like how fps games have your health and ammo in the corners of the screen). I may also switch the game log to a tabbed section so you can switch what is displayed there.

EDIT: Another idea I just thought of, maybe ad a blank line at the top like most traditional roguelikes, for simple log data(Just use "Hits! (19/6/20/17)" for damage) and have tabs at the bottom right for changing between status, log, etc for the bottom right(then would be middle right I guess) which would be more multipurpose. Would kind of make sense for ships, it would be like a computer screen, you switch between which info you're looking at.

Maybe I will do this in the form of floating text that appears over the map (like damage numbers in most real-time rpgs). This is all custom Java rendering so I am pretty flexible in what I can do.

Cool idea looks good. I second displaying the player stats though and also the stats of enemies, or at least the targeted enemy. I mean sheilds:weak hull:damaged doesn't tell me how much more damage the shields or hull can take in order to make decisions.

One of the important pieces of equipment your ship will have are sensors. The more powerful the sensor (among other factors), the more detailed information you can get. Bad sensors at long range may only reveal whether or not a ship has shields. Better sensors may reveal the exact percentage of shields.

Krice

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Re: User Interface suggestions
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2013, 11:15:28 AM »
Any reason why it's B/W and no colors?

Nymphaea

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Re: User Interface suggestions
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2013, 01:20:58 PM »
There are a few things I still need to add like a scroll bar for the game log and the map will support per character colors/highlights.

It hasn't been added yet :P I don't really mind the black/white though, works well with space theme. Maybe recolour the "shadows"(areas you can't see) to a dark grey though.


Also, for the corners idea, that could work, but make sure to add borders around them so the characters don't appear as part of the map :P That or make sure nothing uses the Blue/Green/Red colours on the map so they stand out.

Out of curiosity, using LWJGL or Swing? I'm working on a little engine myself using LWJGL :)

ExtremoPenguin

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Re: User Interface suggestions
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2013, 02:12:07 PM »
Out of curiosity, using LWJGL or Swing? I'm working on a little engine myself using LWJGL :)

It uses swing. I don't need the speed of OpenGL and by using swing I don't have to worry about native libraries.