Battle layout: share your thoughts

A discussion area for general design issues that staff would like detailed feedback on.

Moderator: Staff

Which design do you think is the best?

Poll ended at Sun Jun 26, 2005 10:43 pm

Draft 1
2
29%
Draft 2
0
No votes
Draft 3
3
43%
Draft 4
0
No votes
Draft 5
1
14%
A combination of the drafts (explain)
1
14%
None of them. Make something totally different (explain)
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 7
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:45 pm

(Safir-Kreuz made that background)

Agreed. :approve: Your designs look much cleaner, more intuitive, and less intimidating to the player. :D However as you stated, there are some critical things missing from these three designs:

1) There is no indicator for stamina (ie, wait time)
2) No status icons
3) No swap counter

I would also like to say that I am strongly opposed to any design in which a menu covers a player sprite, enemy sprite, or is in the center of the screen.


I like the first design more than the second. I like it a lot :bow: Keeping all of the actions in a single column weakest-to-strongest is a great idea IMO. And you totally have ample space with this design to fill in the missing information:

1) Stamina can be placed to the right of SP
2) Status icons can be placed to the right of stamina
3) Swap cards/counter can be placed to the left of the character portrait

The only negative point that I can see with this current first design is that the HP and SP numbers are too large and it becomes very difficult to see the underlying % bar. But other than that, I think your first design is damn near perfect :bow:
Image
User avatar
Jetryl
Artist
Posts: 1485
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2005 7:35 am
Location: Southern Minnesota, USA

Postby Jetryl » Sat Apr 22, 2006 9:48 pm

FYI - a nice background that Safir-Kreuz made.
I've made similar goofs, though, so no worries. (He and wayfarer do have some similarities in taste, so I could see why).

I hope that Safir finds the time to make some more... Those are incredible.

And uh... :bow: wow. Keep it up.

(PS, thank you for using those icons :D - I made the first two, pekka made the iceball, and leonhard made the shield. I'd really like to see some of those used in allacrost, because I think they'd have good uses here - as I think you just demonstrated.)
nunvuru
Web Designer
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 12:57 am

Postby nunvuru » Sat Apr 22, 2006 10:08 pm

Wow. I was totally expecting some major dissapointments with this one. Well i'm happy you guys like the work so far. I'd like to get some votes on which design I should pursue and what (if anything) I should retain from the one you didn't vote for. With that info I could knock out another draft and we can go from there.

Re: Roots

Thanks for your likes/dislikes. It will go a long way towards helping me edit the next draft together.
nunvuru
Web Designer
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 12:57 am

Postby nunvuru » Sat Apr 22, 2006 10:40 pm

First off, THANKS Safir-Kreuz! I apologize for getting that wrong. I knew I should have fact-checked that first. I downloaded it a couple of days ago and totally forgot who had done it. Anyways, awesome work. Make me some more!

Re: Jetryl

No, thank YOU. I was blown away when I ran into these on the forums. I'm not the best in the world with icons so when I saw these I jumped at the chance to mess with them. Glad you like their use and I hope they make it to the final product. In fact, if you're up for it sometime i'm sure we'll need some similar ones for the final menu choices (whenever we find out what those are). Again thanks, and keep up the great work.
User avatar
Jetryl
Artist
Posts: 1485
Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2005 7:35 am
Location: Southern Minnesota, USA

Postby Jetryl » Sat Apr 22, 2006 11:26 pm

nunvuru wrote:In fact, if you're up for it sometime i'm sure we'll need some similar ones for the final menu choices (whenever we find out what those are).


Yes, I am.

Roots: I can make any custom icons you need.
nunvuru
Web Designer
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 12:57 am

Postby nunvuru » Sun Apr 23, 2006 12:31 am

Changes made.

Ready:
Image

Selected:
Image
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Sun Apr 23, 2006 7:21 pm

Looks absolutely awesome. :bow: :bow: :bow:

A few thoughts (and no, I didn't expect you to know all of this. :))


1) The swap cards are the most unintuitive piece in the layout. While I absolutely love the glyph on the card and everything, a user new to the game is going to see that and wonder "wtf!?" :heh: Maybe two little stick figures with two circular arrows would be better? :shrug:


2) I don't think the stamina bars need a percentage on them. They will be constantly changing so seeing percentage numbers constantly spinning would only serve to distract, me thinks. :) Maybe the characters "ST" should preceed the bars so that it's not just a nameless bar too. :angel:


3) Status icons look awesome. :approve: We had a discussion somewhere that status would have different levels of stength, but I think we can indicate that just with an appropriate colored border like the yellow you have there. :D

Also because the icons are so small, maybe we want to consider having a small green up arrow to indicate good status and a small red down arrow to indicate bad? Just a thought. :shrug:


4) The four main actions are: attack, defend, support, and use item (no magic/summon, because those fall into those other categories). But there are also other things the player can do, for example run away, swap character, change position (ie, forward/back). And we may also have a special skill that is not normally available. What we need to ask ourselves is: Should these non-regular actions be placed with the regular ones? If so, where? And if not, how will the player know that they are there?


5) Originally we had planned for the four major actions to be in a 4-way type configuration (Lufia-style, if you know what I'm talking about). So when the ready menu comes up, the cursor is situated in the middle and not pointing to anything. The user has to press (and hold) either up/down/left/right to select one of the major actions. The reason we wanted to do this is so that its just as easy to get the cursor to the attack list of skills as it is for the defend list. I'm fine if we don't do this and keep things all in one row as they are now, but I wanted to throw this point out there so people could think about it.

#6: It would be nice if each skill category had the most recently used skill of that type placed on top (as well as being replacated in the list below). This makes it easier if the player wants to use one skill repeatedly.



Ok enough typing, my wrists hurt. :heh: I just wanted to throw out those points that the design currently does not take into consideration, but could very easily. Thanks for doing such an awesome job on this design Matt. I think it's very refreshing and motivating to see something that looks as great as this. :D
Image
nunvuru
Web Designer
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 12:57 am

Postby nunvuru » Sun Apr 23, 2006 10:08 pm

Great stuff here Roots. Very helpful! So here is a new draft with those revisions. I think I touched on everything except #5. Until we get a vote on that i'd rather not go messing with it.

Image

And here is how I thought non-regular actions could make their way into the box.

As you can see there is a down arrow. Press down on the keyboard and:
Image

Viola! Four more actions you can use. You could go even further down for more actions if you wanted. Just press up to get back to the previous menu.
Image
User avatar
visage
Former Staff
Posts: 711
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 9:19 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Postby visage » Mon Apr 24, 2006 2:20 am

Wow. Really, really amazing work....but I am a bit confused. Since when did SP and ST become different things.

Also, I thought we had decided that there was no position movement during battle, but before battle that sort of thing could be changed? I am confused...

But really, really, really nice looking.
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Mon Apr 24, 2006 2:20 am

:bow: :bow:

Matt, do you think you can break some of this stuff up into images so we can put it all together in the battle engine? We don't need any text, but all that GUI stuff would be really nice to have. :D


I've been meaning to answer your earlier post about the dialogue menu in the staff forums on how to split up the menu windows, so I'll go reply to that right now. :approve:
Image
User avatar
gorzuate
Developer
Posts: 2575
Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2004 3:03 am
Location: Hermosa Beach, CA
Contact:

Postby gorzuate » Mon Apr 24, 2006 6:39 am

Yeah, I'm with you, visage. Where'd this SP thing come from? I thought there would only be HP, and stamina (ST)... :huh:
Image
nunvuru
Web Designer
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 17, 2005 12:57 am

Postby nunvuru » Mon Apr 24, 2006 8:20 am

Re: Roots

Just give me a guide to go by and i'll cut it up.

Re: Visage & Gorzuate

I was just going by the battle drafts. Perhaps things have changed since then? If that's what is supposed to be i'll be happy to make whatever changes necessary.
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Mon Apr 24, 2006 1:17 pm

visage wrote:Wow. Really, really amazing work....but I am a bit confused. Since when did SP and ST become different things.

Also, I thought we had decided that there was no position movement during battle, but before battle that sort of thing could be changed? I am confused...

But really, really, really nice looking.


HP = Hit Points
SP = Skill Points
ST = Stamina (the amount of time you have to wait to take another action)

SP and ST have ALWAYS been different!!!


I forgot about the no position movement during battle thing. :angel: You're right, that won't go on there.


I'll post instructions for cutting it up later today nunvuru. I need to get ready for work right now. :)
Image
User avatar
visage
Former Staff
Posts: 711
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 9:19 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Postby visage » Mon Apr 24, 2006 2:37 pm

Roots, I thought this was the way we had decided it:

HP -- Health points. Just like every other RPG.
SP/ST -- Skill Points (or Stamina). Constantly increasing (except in WarmUp and CoolDown modes). Anything less than 100%, and the player attacks with less than 100% efficiency. However, they need a certain amount of minimum stamina to perform each attack. So as your player levels up, they get more "stamina," which means they can perform bigger attacks. I guess I combined your SP and ST bars.

The reason I thought that was from my design document, which you approved (though, maybe we just interpreted it differently). Here is the quote:

The Active Time Battle System is a method for describing how ready characters are to attack. Each character has a status bar that displays their current wait level. As each battles' master clock progresses, the player character and enemy wait bars fill. A character can use a skill at any time, but the effectiveness of that skill is based on the current level of the wait bar. If the bar is anything below 100%, then the skill will not be performed with 100% efficiency. A character must have at least 20% to perform a skill, a 100% gives the skill performed a 25% critical chance increase. Skill efficiency is directly mapped to the wait bar percentage. As skills are performed, they remove a certain percentage from the wait bar, based on how "difficult" the skill was to perform.


But looking back at all the design posts, I could easily see how you could read my stuff your way, and how I read your stuff my way.

I dunno. Maybe we should talk about this. Honestly, how did we go this long with this misunderstanding?!
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Mon Apr 24, 2006 2:58 pm

Yeah, we need to definitely talk about this. I never even knew that you interpreted SP and stamina as being the same. :ohnoes: Can you get on Skype sometime tonight so we can talk about it? I'll be home around 9 Central time, which is...well late Eastern time. :( If not tonight, maybe tomorrow then.
Image
User avatar
visage
Former Staff
Posts: 711
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 9:19 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Postby visage » Mon Apr 24, 2006 4:44 pm

Thats just 10 EST, so I should be on (my classes end at 8).

Just so you know, though...changing it really won't be changing anything in the battle system but a "definition" and adding a new member variable to a class or two. Shouldn't change much code wise. Just glad we caught it!
User avatar
Loodwig
Musician
Posts: 511
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2005 5:15 am
Location: Chicago, IL
Contact:

Postby Loodwig » Wed Apr 26, 2006 5:09 pm

Not super relevant, but DAMN that looks good.

I so want to make more themes now.
"We want a simpler and more melodic style for music, a simple, less complicated emotional state, and dissonance again relegated to its proper place as one element of music..."
~Sergei Prokofiev
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Tue Jul 04, 2006 5:13 pm

[img:1024:768]http://www.allacrost.org/staff/user/nunvuru/battle_system4_6.jpg[/img]

So here's what I'm curious about. See that big empty space in the lower right hand part of the screen? What should we put there?

Obviously we want some more room for character status icons, but I don't think we'll have so many status afflictions that it will take up more than half of that empty space. Maybe we could put the name of the enemy selected and the name of the attack point selected there? For example, assume we have a battle with 4 spiders. If the player has selected an action they can select to attack:

Spider (C)
Head


That would attack the third spider on the head. What do you guys think?



Also I would like to discuss the placement, size, and format of the upper left-hand menu at some point. That's the only thing that still looks a little awkward to me in this layout design.
Image
User avatar
visage
Former Staff
Posts: 711
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 9:19 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Postby visage » Thu Jul 06, 2006 3:46 am

To be honest, I don't think we need anything there. I didn't even notice it until you did -- though, your suggestion isn't a bad idea. Not so hard to whip up, either.
User avatar
Roots
Dictator
Posts: 8662
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 6:07 pm
Location: Austin TX
Contact:

Postby Roots » Thu Jul 06, 2006 4:12 am

visage wrote:To be honest, I don't think we need anything there. I didn't even notice it until you did -- though, your suggestion isn't a bad idea. Not so hard to whip up, either.


Yeah. I think it would make it much less cluttered than the current way, where the name of the enemy/attack point is drawn right next to the enemy sprite. Eh?
Image

Return to “Design”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest