improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

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campfire-earth
Posts: 3
Joined: May 12th, 2008, 6:07 pm

improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by campfire-earth » May 12th, 2008, 9:12 pm

What need's improvement? These are a few annoyances which I feel make Wesnoth seem less polished. I have my own suggestions as to how to overcome these problems but other ideas are welcome. Corrections to any assumptions I have made are also welcome.

Multiplayer

In Game
1) The help menu freezes gameplay (you won't know when your turn starts which forces other players to wait)
Solution: Having a menu that appears at the bottom of the screen when needed could allow the game and chat to continue above.
2) Few options while waiting for other players to end their turns.
Solution: Being able to select where you want some of your units to move before your turn comes around or being able to view battle information at anytime (possibly in the same menu view for the solution to problem #1).
3) The help menu does not allow browsing units by faction (as far as I know).
Solution: Organize help menus.

On Server
4) Players that don't have necessary add-ons can still join those games.
Solutions: Display a dialogue message saying, "You need the ", <add-on name>, " add-on in order to join this game. To get the latest version of this add-on, select 'Add-ons' from the main menu." Or something like that.

Add-on Specific:
5) There is no indication in the add-on list when there is a new version of an add-on you already have.
Solution: Display an indicator beside the add-ons that you have. If your version is out of date, the indicator should be replaced with the words "new version".

Single and Multiplayer

In-Game
6) There is a large space in the menu to the right between character information and the 'end turn' button.
Solution: Fill it with something useful. Some of the options in the action menu would, in my opinion, be more useful as buttons. The 'next unit' button, for example, could be directly above the 'end turn' button and indicate the number of units that still haven't moved. Alternatively, a box for displaying scenario specific information could be useful for games like Dot_G and SurvivalXtreme since they include extra statistics.

F50
Posts: 48
Joined: April 22nd, 2008, 9:59 pm

Re: improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by F50 » May 13th, 2008, 3:47 am

campfire-earth wrote:6) There is a large space in the menu to the right between character information and the 'end turn' button.
Solution: Fill it with something useful. Some of the options in the action menu would, in my opinion, be more useful as buttons. The 'next unit' button, for example, could be directly above the 'end turn' button and indicate the number of units that still haven't moved. Alternatively, a box for displaying scenario specific information could be useful for games like Dot_G and SurvivalXtreme since they include extra statistics.
Empty space is often good. A cluttered interface is almost always bad.

Sangel
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Joined: March 26th, 2004, 10:58 pm
Location: New York, New York

Re: improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by Sangel » May 13th, 2008, 6:31 am

campfire-earth wrote:4) Players that don't have necessary add-ons can still join those games.
Solutions: Display a dialogue message saying, "You need the ", <add-on name>, " add-on in order to join this game. To get the latest version of this add-on, select 'Add-ons' from the main menu." Or something like that.
An good suggestion.
campfire-earth wrote:5) There is no indication in the add-on list when there is a new version of an add-on you already have.
Solution: Display an indicator beside the add-ons that you have. If your version is out of date, the indicator should be replaced with the words "new version".
This is also a good suggestion, and one that is frequently proposed. As I understand it, there are plans to improve the User Interface on the Addon Server; they just haven't yet come to fruition. If you know how to code, feel free to write up and submit a patch to accomplish this, as it's almost certain to be accepted.
"Pure logic is the ruin of the spirit." - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

campfire-earth
Posts: 3
Joined: May 12th, 2008, 6:07 pm

Re: improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by campfire-earth » May 13th, 2008, 6:31 pm

F50 wrote:Empty space is often good. A cluttered interface is almost always bad.
Agreed. :wink: No one hates clutter more than me. It's probably an issue with larger screens. On a large monitor like mine, with a 1920:1200 resolution, the interface looks very sparse.

However, the changes don't have to take up a lot of space (another "end turn"-sized button shouldn't be a problem) or be present 100% of the time. Take a look at this example of a tactics game for the GBA:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xbGzYAQOi4

A lot of information is displayed on a very small screen without too much clutter.
Sangel wrote:
campfire-earth wrote:5) There is no indication in the add-on list when there is a new version of an add-on you already have.
Solution: Display an indicator beside the add-ons that you have. If your version is out of date, the indicator should be replaced with the words "new version".
This is also a good suggestion, and one that is frequently proposed. As I understand it, there are plans to improve the User Interface on the Addon Server; they just haven't yet come to fruition. If you know how to code, feel free to write up and submit a patch to accomplish this, as it's almost certain to be accepted.
Thank you. I do know some programming but not enough to be of use, yet. If you or anyone else knows of any good books to help in this regard, specifically from a mac user point of view, feel free to send me a message.

vicza
Posts: 238
Joined: January 16th, 2008, 11:40 pm
Location: Moscow

Re: improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by vicza » May 13th, 2008, 6:39 pm

campfire-earth wrote:and indicate the number of units that still haven't moved.
This would be useful, I think.

F50
Posts: 48
Joined: April 22nd, 2008, 9:59 pm

Re: improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by F50 » May 13th, 2008, 10:35 pm

vicza wrote:
campfire-earth wrote:and indicate the number of units that still haven't moved.
This would be useful, I think.
indeed

TheArchitect
Posts: 55
Joined: March 29th, 2008, 4:46 pm

Re: improvements on multiplayer and the in-game user interface

Post by TheArchitect » May 17th, 2008, 12:36 am

All these sound like great ideas.
2) Few options while waiting for other players to end their turns.
Solution: Being able to select where you want some of your units to move before your turn comes around or being able to view battle information at anytime (possibly in the same menu view for the solution to problem #1).
This in particular would be a real help in speeding up games; and as we all know, less waiting means fewer quitters. :wink:

Also, on the subject of clutter, I don't see how adding a little more information would be a problem. In my opinion, there's enough room to double the amount of space used for character information without clutter becoming a serious problem.

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