Nitpicks and updates

Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 15 Feb 2013, 19:14

Hi everyone,

Player.png
▲ I've made this picture for no particular reason. I've also started a list of nitpicks and suggestions for graphical improvements. It's not done yet, but enough to show you. ▼


Unsorted
■ We could make the fade to black transition configurable.
■ The tooltips and game tips should be pure, opaque white, with no transparency. Setting it fully opaque should make it look sharper and more defined.I would also like the border to be a 1 pixel wide black line (no AA). This applies to the tooltips in the main menu, level select, in-game level-name display and game tips.


Main
■ New inky-style "Achievements and Statistics" and "Credits" buttons. These are inky black with a 25% opaque pure white round background. (See attachments)
■ We might want to swap these buttons around. This looks more balanced, because the darker/heavier icon (the trophy) fits better in the corner than the small "i". This way, the corner looks progressively darker instead of having a darker cluster left of the lower right corner. (I hope this makes sense)
■ Not sure how this works out; We can reposition the tooltip to the lower left corner. This is in form with the in-game level name display. It's still clear what the tooltip informs about, because it only appears when the mouse hovers over the buttons. (See mock-up below)

Mock-up-Main.png


Level Select
■ Small edit to time-icon. (See attachments)
■ I would like the backgroundcolour/highlight of Time and Recordings replay buttons to be changed to pure white with 75% transparency (25% opaque), just like the new buttons in the lower right corner of the main menu, but these should only appear when hovered over.
■ Uniforming the tooltips displaying time and recordings. (Pure white, no transparency and sharp borders) (See mock-up below)
■ When the level is finished in the same amount of recording (as the personal record), but quicker, then this run should override the least-amount-of-recordings-replay.
■ Same with the quickest run: Same time, but less recording should override quickest-replay.

Mock-up-Level-Select.png


In-game
■ New inky-style shadow recording and replaying icon for upper right corner. (See attachments)
■ Uniforming the game tips and level-name display (Pure white, no transparency, sharp borders) (See mock-up below)
■ Notification should be 25% transparent pure white (75% opaque), 1 pixel black border like the tooltips and interlevel screen (see text below)
■ Same applies to "Your shadow has died" and "Press R to restart"
■ When the level is finished:
- The background should be 75% transparent pure black (25% opaque)
- The foreground should be 25% transparent pure white (75% opaque), 1 pixel black wide borders like all the tooltips.

Mock-up-In-game.png
As you can see, I'm working on scenery. I would like to have (perhaps multiple) background(s) and alternative options for the blocks (simulating foreground scenery)

Still more to come... Feel free to comment :).

P.S. Sorry for the wall of text and the cloudscape.mnmstheme needs to be updated.
Attachments
updated_data.zip
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Last edited by Tedium on 23 Feb 2013, 12:28, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Edward_Lii » 15 Feb 2013, 21:58

Hello Tedium,

First of all I'd like to say that the drawing looks great. :D

Tedium {l Wrote}:■ We could make the fade to black transition configurable.

This can be done quite easily, the option will probably be hidden just like the quickrecord method.
If you are planning on changing the layout of the options menu, which IMHO is really needed, you can take these options into account.

Tedium {l Wrote}:■ The tooltips and game tips should be pure, opaque white, with no transparency. Setting it fully opaque should make it look sharper and more defined. I would also like the border to be a 1 pixel wide black line (no AA). This applies to the tooltips in the main menu, level select, in-game level-name display and game tips.
■ Uniforming the tooltips displaying time and recordings. (Pure white, no transparency and sharp borders)
■ Uniforming the game tips and level-name display (Pure white, no transparency, sharp borders)

Luckily these are all drawn with the same method so changing it won't be that difficult.
My only concern is that some GUI elements might look worse without the AA. :think:

Tedium {l Wrote}:■ We might want to swap these buttons around. This looks more balanced, because the darker/heavier icon (the trophy) fits better in the corner than the small "i". This way, the corner looks progressively darker instead of having a darker cluster left of the lower right corner. (I hope this makes sense)
■ Not sure how this works out; We can reposition the tooltip to the lower left corner. This is in form with the in-game level name display. It's still clear what the tooltip informs about, because it only appears when the mouse hovers over the buttons. (See mock-up below)

I think it made sense, someway. :p
Anyway, I will probably make changes as you suggested very soon.

Tedium {l Wrote}:■ I would like the backgroundcolour/highlight of Time and Recordings replay buttons to be changed to pure white with 75% transparency (25% opaque), just like the new buttons in the lower right corner of the main menu, but these should only appear when hovered over.

This can be done very easily. ;)

Tedium {l Wrote}:■ When the level is finished in the same amount of recording (as the personal record), but quicker, then this run should override the least-amount-of-recordings-replay.
■ Same with the quickest run: Same time, but less recording should override quickest-replay.

These are good suggestions and I agree that the replay should be updated if you improve it in such ways.
It would be nice to extend the replay mode a bit, perhaps show the time and duration and perhaps some simple time navigation controls.

Also allowing the user to save replays whenever he wants might be a good idea, especially for bug reports.

Tedium {l Wrote}:As you can see, I'm working on scenery. I would like to have (perhaps multiple) background(s) and alternative options for the blocks (simulating foreground scenery)

How would you like scenery to work, tile based just like the blocks, or placement of images or both?
Should there be multiple layers, foreground and background, etc...

It might be a good idea to implement scenery based on what you find useful, instead of what I think you will find useful.
As for the changing blocks, I thought of simply allowing the levelmaker to set the blockstate of a block.
This way the themefile can define multiple blockstates that can be used, the only downside is that "functional" blocks can't use these since they use these states for their status.
Is this a problem, or should checkpoints, switches, swappoints, etc... look the same for the puzzling aspect of the game?

Tedium {l Wrote}:Still more to come... Feel free to comment :).

Thank you very much for these nitpicks, it are small things that I wouldn't think of myself. ;)

Tedium {l Wrote}:P.S. Sorry for the wall of text and the cloudscape.mnmstheme needs to be updated.

I have updated the images and committed them, they are in svn rev. 594, along with a fixed mnmstheme file.
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby acme_pjz » 16 Feb 2013, 14:59

Hi Edward_Lii,

I think you forgot a file ./data/themes/Cloudscape/background.png :|
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby odamite » 17 Feb 2013, 13:25

Hello Tedium,

Great to see you've gathered some small things here so they can be fixed quite easily. I believe these little things can make a big impact on the overall user experience. Also your drawing looks great and I can't wait to see the scenery graphics in action. :)

The only thing I disagree with you is the borders in tooltips. I prefer the smooth anti-aliased borders to black 1 pixel wide borders. We have had those in the past and new borders just look nicer to me. Also most of the GUI widgets use those borders too as Edward_Lii noted. Should these be changed too?

So why do you want to change the borders in the first place? I think this needs more discussion but everything can be changed easily if it's decided. :cool:
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 17 Feb 2013, 14:37

Hello everyone,

Thank you for the feedback :).

Edward_Lii {l Wrote}:Luckily these are all drawn with the same method so changing it won't be that difficult.
My only concern is that some GUI elements might look worse without the AA. :think:
odamite {l Wrote}:The only thing I disagree with you is the borders in tooltips. I prefer the smooth anti-aliased borders to black 1 pixel wide borders. We have had those in the past and new borders just look nicer to me. Also most of the GUI widgets use those borders too as Edward_Lii noted. Should these be changed too?

So why do you want to change the borders in the first place? I think this needs more discussion but everything can be changed easily if it's decided. :cool:

First of all, if we are going to change the borders, the new rules should apply to all GUI widgets borders. I think I might have went a bit too far with contrasting and sharpening :oops:. I was afraid the AA made it look too blurry, but this is not the case. It actually looks quite nice ;). I suppose we keep the AA border.

Edward_Lii {l Wrote}:It would be nice to extend the replay mode a bit, perhaps show the time and duration and perhaps some simple time navigation controls.

Also allowing the user to save replays whenever he wants might be a good idea, especially for bug reports.

I agree.

Edward_Lii {l Wrote}:How would you like scenery to work, tile based just like the blocks, or placement of images or both?
Should there be multiple layers, foreground and background, etc...

It might be a good idea to implement scenery based on what you find useful, instead of what I think you will find useful.

■ I think there should be at least two background layers (one for the actual background (like the brick walls) and another one for the background scenery (like the columns). We could allow the user to add more background layers, but I don't think that's necessary. I want the user to be able to place background blocks from a special selection of tiles (scenery.png). There should be an option to append more blocks, if the user needs additional backgroundtiles.
■ I think we just need an option to choose alternative tiles for the collision layer. We could provide the user with a special selection of tiles that include connecting tiles and such. There should also be an option to append more blocks, if the user needs additional collision-layer-tiles.
■ I don't think we need a foreground for now :think:... Mainly because it's a lot of work and I don't know what the foreground should look like (or what colour scheme to use) :p.

Edward_Lii {l Wrote}:As for the changing blocks, I thought of simply allowing the levelmaker to set the blockstate of a block.
This way the themefile can define multiple blockstates that can be used, the only downside is that "functional" blocks can't use these since they use these states for their status.
Is this a problem, or should checkpoints, switches, swappoints, etc... look the same for the puzzling aspect of the game?

The advantage of your implementation is that it allows different themes to easily replace the Cloudscape theme, because the artist will just have to change that blockstate in his theme. However, if the level appends custom tiles, it will be difficult for a different theme to support those. Not being able to change functional blocks isn't a problem at all. Changing those will just about always lead to obscurity of the puzzle. Me and My Shadow is a puzzle platformer. You need to understand the question (puzzle) to answer it (solve the puzzle) ;).
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby acme_pjz » 18 Feb 2013, 05:51

Hi Tedium,

Maybe we need an image for new pushable blocks in 0.5 svn version... maybe it should looks like wooden box? :)
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 22 Feb 2013, 22:47

acme_pjz {l Wrote}:Hi Tedium,

Maybe we need an image for new pushable blocks in 0.5 svn version... maybe it should looks like wooden box? :)

Hi acme_pjz,

That's an excellent idea :D. I was thinking of a similar approach. I think the warm brown colour of wood adds some colour variation to the game. I'll try find time to work on that (and to extend the nitpicks list) :).
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 02 Mar 2013, 15:46

Options
■ I would like to see sub menus, accessible by a selector similar to the levelpack selector.
■ Keys configuration as a sub menu.
■ All the options should be divided into two columns. Toggleable options go in either in left or right slot. Sliders, text-input and listboxes will be put in the right column with their description on the left.
■ Checkboxes should be pure white, 100% opaque, no transparency. (like the tooltips)
■ Clear progress as bomb icon lower right corner, with a tooltip (same as main menu) saying; "Clear progress"

Mock-up-Settings.png

I expect options to be changed and added, so I've only worked on the overall look. Here's the bomb icon:
clear-progress.png
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby odamite » 02 Mar 2013, 17:51

Hello Tedium,

Thank you for pointing this out. Currently the settings screen is pretty cluttered and complicated to use. Mockup is nice and informative and the bomb icon looks very neat too. :)

Implementing the changes should be mostly easy but modifying key configuration system is trickier. And how should the key configuration screen look like in your opinion? Should it look the same or do we need something new?
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 08 Mar 2013, 18:24

Hello Odamite,

odamite {l Wrote}:Thank you for pointing this out. Currently the settings screen is pretty cluttered and complicated to use. Mockup is nice and informative and the bomb icon looks very neat too. :)

Thanks :D.

odamite {l Wrote}:Implementing the changes should be mostly easy but modifying key configuration system is trickier. And how should the key configuration screen look like in your opinion? Should it look the same or do we need something new?

I think it would be best to change it into a submenu. Doing so will take up some space (for the submenu selector), but also makes it a lot less cluttered. I'm still uncertain about the details :think:.
The keyconfig submenu, achievements and statistics menu and editor have very unique functions. This makes them very difficult "to uniform" :|. I'll try to find time to work on this, but I'm very busy...
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 09 Mar 2013, 13:17

Tedium {l Wrote}:I think the warm brown colour of wood adds some colour variation to the game. I'll try find time to work on that (and to extend the nitpicks list) :).

Here you go :D:

Mock-up-In-game2.png

Crate.png
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Edward_Lii » 09 Mar 2013, 13:46

Hello Tedium,

Tedium {l Wrote}:Here you go :D:

Great work, I have added the crate image to the game, it's in svn rev. 613. ;)
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 09 Mar 2013, 15:26

Hello Edward_Lii,

Thank you :). I also increased the saturation of the tiles. I realised that it might be a good idea to merge the tiles.png, crate.png and collectable.png:

tiles2.png
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby MCMic » 09 Mar 2013, 16:25

You should definitely use the drawing from Tedius (in the first post) for advertising M&MS!
It's missing something through : the shadow! The shadow is a little circle at his feet.
You should add some kind of wall behind him and project the shadow on it. You could also add some joke like the shadow is smiling and not the "me" or something.
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Re: Nitpicks and updates

Postby Tedium » 10 Mar 2013, 16:30

Hello MCMic,

MCMic {l Wrote}:You should definitely use the drawing from Tedius (in the first post) for advertising M&MS!

:) I'm glad you like it.

MCMic {l Wrote}:It's missing something through : the shadow! The shadow is a little circle at his feet.
You should add some kind of wall behind him and project the shadow on it. You could also add some joke like the shadow is smiling and not the "me" or something.

I actually had the shadow of the character as a shadow projection first. I drew a long shadow on the floor, connecting the feet of the character with the silhouette of the "shadow" on a wall. I also tried having the shadow only on the floor. Sadly, this made the composition a bit unbalanced(/large) for a stand-alone picture, though very stylish :D. I think it's a great composition for in a scene or larger artwork. I went with only drawing the "me" as a stand-alone character, because I knew it would look better as a small separate picture and because it's less work for something that hasn't got a use yet.

If we find a need for this bigger composition (in the credits, ending, website or such), I'll definitely consider making it ;).
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