Author Topic: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)  (Read 11445 times)

King Ink

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http://jakobvirgil.blogspot.com/2013/09/there-is-now-playable-demo-of-goblin.html

huge world
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world remembers the changes made by previous characters.

working on throwing things and professions at the moment.
fighting works but you have to mean it!
-Jake

Samildanach

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2013, 12:34:42 PM »
One major thought from the ten minutes or so that I've spent with the game so far: maybe it's just me but I found it extremely difficult to identify myself. It took a full couple of minutes of moving left and right and trying to spot my one moving shape amidst the others. I'd say the player's character needs to be much easier to distinguish.

I do like the overall style though. Aesthetically very pleasant.

Zireael

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2013, 04:09:00 PM »
Seems very interesting, but I'll echo the above poster.

King Ink

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2013, 11:47:47 AM »
My wife has the same problem with it.
I am trying to figure out an aesthetic solution.

TheCreator

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2013, 12:26:59 PM »
Whenever I see Chinese characters on my screen, I look for a "Back" button or something similar. For a typical European guy they are more a warning (something's wrong with your encoding, fella!) than meaningful symbols. The legend on the right does not help much. So I don't think I'll ever play this, but I appreciate the original idea :).
Fame (Untitled) - my game. Everything is a roguelike.

King Ink

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2013, 12:43:49 PM »
It certainly requires a certain sense of composition.
give it some time I am not a Hanzi reader but after a small amount of game play
the ideograms become quite expressive.
I did notice that the contrast in the downloaded version leaves much to be desired.
if you place a picture titled map.bmp (perhaps a snap of a piece of paper) in the directory
it looks nicer.

-Jake

 

Soyweiser

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2013, 03:20:10 PM »
I was thinking about this. For most of us, the reading of the Chinese chars is strange. But how far off is this experience from a player who never did roguelikes before and plays his first roguelike? We all know the @ is the player. But that is because we have more experience with RL's.

So, now I wonder if this is what first time RL players feel like.

Vanguard

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2013, 03:51:37 PM »
This would be much easier to read if the colors of the characters on the right were the same as they are in the playing field.

Samildanach

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2013, 07:19:44 PM »
So, now I wonder if this is what first time RL players feel like.
It pretty much is. My very first experience with a RL was years ago when I tried to play NetHack just because I'd heard the name somewhere. I honestly couldn't distinguish between objects. I had to look at each symbol and think "Is that something? No, that's just more wall" and I found it difficult to keep track of my @ amidst a load of other symbols. Diving into Goblin Men is quite similar to that. It takes concentration just to perceive because it's unfamiliar.

AgingMinotaur

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2013, 09:19:54 PM »
I've always thought a RL using Chinese ideograms would be interesting. Not having tried the game at hand, I share the concerns that it might become heavy UI-wise, though. The characters are pretty subtle to distinguish for someone with little or no training. I think it would make sense to try and use a lot of "simple" characters (with few strokes), or maybe reserve the more complex characters for either a certain category of beings (ie. monsters and npcs have elaborate characters, whilst landscapes and items have "cleaner" signs) – or for content that pops up later in the game, letting the player start out with something more easy on the eyes. Using basic signs will also typically land you with characters that resemble what they actually mean (signs like "tree" and "water" are what I mean, as opposed to "farmer" and "fence", which might get muddled).

But I do think a players will pick up reoccurring signs quite quickly. I remember a period of playing a lot of Chinese Chess, where the pieces have ideograms written on them. After just a few games, I learned to recognize the characters quite well.

Also, you can probably utilize the system with radicals (composite signs). For instance, consider 魚 (fish) and 鯨 (whale), where the latter sign is made up of the former as a radical on the left side, plus the right hand radical 京 (meaning ten quadrillions, apparently). This may not be the best example, but my point is, if you can "teach" the player some simpler signs ("fish") in the beginning, s/he might see a more complex character ("whale") and think: "Well, this should be something pertaining to or similar to a fish." Finding some clever way to utilize this might correspond to the use of colours in traditional ascii Roguelikes.

As always,
Minotauros

PS. Please forgive/forget/correct my Chinese, of which I know nothing.
This matir, as laborintus, Dedalus hous, hath many halkes and hurnes ... wyndynges and wrynkelynges.

Samildanach

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2013, 09:27:54 PM »
I like that radical idea. It has potential for an interesting subtlety of presentation.

Zireael

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2013, 07:18:19 AM »
Slowly introducing radicals are a good idea.

I still suggest making the player character really different from others and colored differently.

Samildanach

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2013, 12:31:38 PM »
I still suggest making the player character really different from others and colored differently.
Agreed. Being able to distinguish the player character with ease is vitally important. Having to search for it can be very frustrating.

King Ink

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2013, 06:15:09 PM »
I think I have solved the player recognition problem
circling characters seems to be part of hanzi typography
so as dumb as it seems putting a little red circle around the player.

seems to do the trick and does not break the design.
-Jake

on the issue of starting with simple radicals very clever even though the
(Dog)  in (fox). might not jump out at a person.
maybe if I write it like this

apparently a Fox is a solitary dog but  (orphan) looks similar to  (melon)

on an unrelated note the game now has orphans.

Samildanach

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Re: Goblin Men - Chinese Character based (explore-able more than playable)
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2013, 06:29:10 PM »
I agree, circling the player should help a lot. This typography stuff is pretty interesting.  :D