Author Topic: "Efficient" wargames, wargame UIs  (Read 3912 times)

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Offline ArizonaTank

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Re: "Efficient" wargames, wargame UIs
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2016, 06:56:47 AM »
"Efficient" without "intuitive," does not necessarily help a game, and in fact could hurt it. 

The example I have in mind is the original UI for Histwar Les Grognards.  It was very efficient from the point of view that a low number of clicks let you do a lot.  But it did not follow the usual conventions we all are used to.  So for many it was not intuitive.  Feedback from users was scathing.  Personally, once I learned it, I liked it.  Anyway, it was probably one of the biggest reasons the game floundered. 
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Offline Capn Darwin

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Re: "Efficient" wargames, wargame UIs
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2016, 07:48:47 AM »
I also think most gamers today (and the past decade for that matter) don't fully understand what it takes to code a game or the impact of cross platform coding on what you can do for a single title. Nor do they understand the interactions of hardware and code. But that's a thread and rant of its own. The point that needs to be understood is when you develope for cross platform, everything in the UI and UX has to sink to the lowest common denominator (if you don't know what that is, blame common core math and do a google search). Xboxes and tablets don't use mouse and keyboard. A PC can use a controller or mouse and buttons. So you end up with a restricted control set because as a developer you can only really afford to code the game once these days. Coding a game version to be PC only can force a massive rewrite of code to support those much broader capabilities of the PC. You really have to have a big enough team with some deep pockets to do that sort of thing. So the point of this mornings ramble, if there is one,  is a UI can may get sub par treatment in some games if it was designed to go cross platform or evolve to a cross platform. So layer in a wargame's need for more info and control and it becomes a huge mess to deal with. I think that's why most if not all "serious" Wargames end up on a PC (sorry MACs you are another issue as well for most small shops).  :coolsmiley:
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Offline Redwolf

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Re: "Efficient" wargames, wargame UIs
« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2016, 12:10:37 PM »
One of the main reasons we kept our interface very windows application-like was the general understanding of menus, right click popup menus and alike. I've seen too many super fancy icon centric or minimalistic GUIs where you have no idea what you are doing without reading a 50+ page guide to understand the correct gesture and head tilt to invoke some function. Wargames (not RTS war-like game) need to display or provide access to a ton of information in order to keep the player up to speed on what a staff would normally handle. The next great battle as a developer are the folks that go the UI sucks and then fail to state what or how to make is suck less. Layer onto that fine mess the now vast range of monitor types and sizes and numbers that having a nice interface at one end totally collapse at the other end of those spectrums. Plus let's add the boot to the taint of the OS. Transitions from Win7 to now Win10 have come pre-packaged with a train wreck of display problems based on how Microsoft decided to short cut resolutions and supported codices. I'm all for some magic formula that get's us to the perfect UI/UX. Our team has been very open to suggestions and ideas to improve the flow of information in our game engine and many of those ideas will find their way into our next game/engine system. So fire away with this ideas. We are listening.  O0

Yeah. For games that are suitable for it a plain interface with windows pulldown menus and right-click menus is a great improvement over e.g. hordes of icons, the choice of pictures on the icons only making sense to the person who picked them.

I also strongly feel that OpenGL is the only API I would use to draw anything, even 2D. Those API changes from version to version of the GUI toolkit (which in windows is couple to OS updates) are really annoying.

Offline Apocalypse 31

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Re: "Efficient" wargames, wargame UIs
« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2016, 05:32:50 PM »
Unity of Command

Offline FarAway Sooner

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Re: "Efficient" wargames, wargame UIs
« Reply #19 on: May 15, 2016, 09:47:23 PM »
Thanks to all of you gentlemen.  This has been a very educational thread for me!

 O0