An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

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Aethaeryn
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An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by Aethaeryn » May 13th, 2008, 3:02 am

Everyone seems to be ranting lately. Personally, I think the biggest place where Wesnoth could improve is merely polish. Randomness is here to stay, if you don't like it there's a new mod you can contribute to (but the fact that most of such mods tend to die speaks for itself). Pretty much every major issue has been discussed to death and the developers have made up their minds. Despite a lot of objections, the balance is as close to perfect as it gets as long as there's no new factions, which won't happen anytime soon if at all. That's not to say there can't be tweaks, but I don't think you're going to see new significant abilities on units (I'd hardly say "feeding" is a balance-breaker) and when you do, they'll be from developers and not from the Ideas forum.

The only major directions I can see Wesnoth improving in for 1.6 are the "polish" instead of the core. A lot of things are being worked on - I'm glad to see that the less-than-challenging AI is being worked on for the Summer of Code and that the artists are going in new directions now that the team coloring project is winding down. I love the new terrains in 1.5, too - especially the walls. Overall, I do think that Wesnoth is going to be just polishing. Unless you have "developer" by your title, I don't think that your opinion on a major change is going to really count unless a few developers agree with you.

That being said, I think that the user-interface needs work (the add-on screen, the campaign screen, etc.). Suggestions like this have more of a chance than suggestions like this or this. Why? Does the first idea show any more knowledge of the game? Not really, it's simply that the place where the game could most noticeably be improved in a way that the developers could actually agree with is in the game client, not the game itself. Personally, I just wonder why this page was last edited in 2006 before it was categorized in the wiki-categorization wave, yet the campaign, add-ons, and end-of-MP-game screens are still rather primitive compared to these proposals. Why ignore the user-interface when that's pretty much the visuals everyone sees? If Wesnoth needs polish, why are the screens so old?
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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by SkeletonCrew » May 13th, 2008, 6:51 am

I'm quite busy with improving the code which will allow the GUI be improved easier
(without the need to know C++). This is a rather large project and will take a while
before it will be ready for usage.

Due to the current state I haven't announced it yet and I rather wait with that until
I have something which can be used. Progress is there, albeit slow.

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by Sapient » May 13th, 2008, 7:06 am

It's an open source project; people work on what they want to work on. Not many people have wanted to help in the GUI code area in recent history. When I was more actively coding, I did make quite a few GUI improvements, and intended to make some more radical changes to the GUI such as collapsible menu items and tabbed panes. I was using that page and freim's proposals as a guideline. Since then I went on a Wesbreak and have returned but semi-active. I've mainly been working on minor bugfixes and WML-related issues. I really must credit Mordante with taking this project on, and he also decided to improve ThemeWML at the same time, which was really badly needed. I was refusing to even touch the ThemeWML code when I worked on the GUI because I knew I would end up rewriting the whole thing if I did. :wink:
http://www.wesnoth.org/wiki/User:Sapient... "Looks like your skills saved us again. Uh, well at least, they saved Soarin's apple pie."

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by nataS » May 13th, 2008, 7:32 am

I especially like:
Image
- The tabs for different types of addons.
- You can see if you have an addon installed.
- If your version is the latest version.
- The option to rate addons and make use of how others rated.

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by sam_waz_here » May 13th, 2008, 7:50 am

I disagree, changes are hard to find but they are possible; you just have to post as many changes as you can come up with until one of them hits the mark...
But that thinking is why I am restricted to one thread on the user forum. :lol2:
Where is the love?

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by vicza » May 13th, 2008, 4:18 pm

nataS wrote:I especially like:
- The tabs for different types of addons.
- You can see if you have an addon installed.
- If your version is the latest version.
- The option to rate addons and make use of how others rated.
I agree, it would be useful, especially the first: types of addons.

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by Iris » May 13th, 2008, 9:58 pm

I am trying to work on that currently, but I'm in need of a "tab widget". Of course I could do it a la a Preferences dialog for the time being - I still have to plan a lot of stuff before getting to implement the new add-on dialog. But for the beginning, I'm splitting the current one from the main game code.
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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

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

Aethaeryn wrote:Everyone seems to be ranting lately. Personally, I think the biggest place where Wesnoth could improve is merely polish. Randomness is here to stay, if you don't like it there's a new mod you can contribute to (but the fact that most of such mods tend to die speaks for itself). Pretty much every major issue has been discussed to death and the developers have made up their minds. Despite a lot of objections, the balance is as close to perfect as it gets as long as there's no new factions, which won't happen anytime soon if at all.
That I disagree with. I direct you to the player's changelog.
Personally, I just wonder why this page was last edited in 2006 before it was categorized in the wiki-categorization wave, yet the campaign, add-ons, and end-of-MP-game screens are still rather primitive compared to these proposals. Why ignore the user-interface when that's pretty much the visuals everyone sees? If Wesnoth needs polish, why are the screens so old?
Because the visuals are quite good already, and are peripheral. Game mechanics and conveniences like the removal of autosaves after a campaign is finished (and especially the ability to decide how many autosaves you want) are much more fun to code, and more noticed when the graphics are at least decent. At very least, for myself, graphics don't matter unless they look ugly. I am quite happy to play roguelikes like ADOM and nethack because they have good gameplay. For those who don't know anything about ADOM, it has basically no graphics to speak about (one step better than text adventure games like Zork).

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by Aethaeryn » May 13th, 2008, 10:19 pm

Sapient wrote:It's an open source project; people work on what they want to work on.
I know, I guess I'm basically bringing back up the issue in hopes that this makes it not forgotten for 1.6. I mean, 1.4 is great but if you put 1.2 and 1.4 side by side and used the same art, you wouldn't quickly find the differences unless you looked at the code/WML (e.g. the map WML changes) - GUI is probably the most noticeable thing that hasn't noticeably been improved in a long time, probably because people get used to the menus. Anyway, I'm glad it isn't really forgotten...
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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by Aethaeryn » May 13th, 2008, 10:26 pm

F50 wrote:That I disagree with. I direct you to the player's changelog.
I was mostly referring to it in terms of suggestions - the significant balancing changes were made by developers, not by people complaining in the forums.
F50 wrote:Because the visuals are quite good already, and are peripheral. Game mechanics and conveniences like the removal of autosaves after a campaign is finished (and especially the ability to decide how many autosaves you want) are much more fun to code, and more noticed when the graphics are at least decent. At very least, for myself, graphics don't matter unless they look ugly. I am quite happy to play roguelikes like ADOM and nethack because they have good gameplay. For those who don't know anything about ADOM, it has basically no graphics to speak about (one step better than text adventure games like Zork).
And yet unlike the sprite and portrait art, which has seen significant improvement since 1.0, the GUI isn't so much fancy and visual as it is making the game more user-friendly. I have seen plenty of complaints about newbies wondering why their "campaign" didn't show up because they don't know that the majority of add-ons aren't campaigns ("campaigns.wesnoth.org" showing up as soon as they click the add-ons button probably confuses them) - and when people complain on forums and IRC there are probably 10x as many of people who it confused and yet they didn't bother to post. Deciding how many autosaves you want is good, but so is deciding what add-ons you want...
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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by ideans » May 14th, 2008, 4:11 pm

Aethaeryn wrote:there's no new factions, which won't happen anytime soon if at all.
http://forum.wesnoth.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=13497 I was waiting for Kalifa for 1.4 maybe it can be in 1.6

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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by Aethaeryn » May 14th, 2008, 9:09 pm

ideans wrote:
Aethaeryn wrote:there's no new factions, which won't happen anytime soon if at all.
http://forum.wesnoth.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=13497 I was waiting for Kalifa for 1.4 maybe it can be in 1.6
I'm aware that it may one day come, but it would be in a separate era, not Default, and the person designing the faction is an MP developer anyway.
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Re: An Issue of Polish: Because everyone else gets to rant...

Post by SkeletonCrew » May 15th, 2008, 3:25 pm

Sapient wrote:I really must credit Mordante with taking this project on, and he also decided to improve ThemeWML at the same time, which was really badly needed. I was refusing to even touch the ThemeWML code when I worked on the GUI because I knew I would end up rewriting the whole thing if I did. :wink:
Yes I know what what I started (at least I think I do ;-) ) and rewriting themeWML is
also on my todo list, in fact the dialogs and theme should share the same C++ and
WML code.

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