Development Update #13: January 2014

Read and discuss the latest big updates in the development process.

Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Ixos » Fri Jan 31, 2014 6:56 pm

Idea for the scanner:

It REALLY looks like a radar but doesn't work like one!

You know the radar that moves around and makes a "Blipp" in the sector where you got something interesting.

If you make the dial move around a bit faster (to not sit and wait for 20 seconds for a complete circle) and get stronger hits when moving across the right angle I think it could feel much more like a real working radar/Scanner.
This should also be alot more intuitive since right now the dial angle has zero actual functionality except for graphics effect.
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Baile nam Fonn » Fri Jan 31, 2014 7:35 pm

JoshParnell wrote:Boom. Let's talk about the HUD :) January went pretty darn well!

KS : http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/jos ... sts/683055
[...]

Small correction: this Kickstarter link currently leads to the November update instead of the January update. Or is it just me? ;)
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby JoshParnell » Fri Jan 31, 2014 7:41 pm

Baile nam Fonn wrote:
JoshParnell wrote:Boom. Let's talk about the HUD :) January went pretty darn well!

KS : http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/jos ... sts/683055
[...]

Small correction: this Kickstarter link currently leads to the November update instead of the January update. Or is it just me? ;)


Ah you're right! Thanks! :)
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Akarius Trent » Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:32 pm

Fantastic update! With every monthly vlog this game changes so much I have no idea how the hell you keep the pace. The more respect to you!

A few questions:
- is there a limit to how many workspaces you can have?
- how do you switch between them? Is there a button that cycles from workspace 1 to 2, 2 to 3 and then 3 back to 1? Or can we map buttons like "workspace left" and "workspace right"? Or maybe any combination list SHIFT+1 jumps to workspace 1 etc?
- will we be able to customize the hud color?

And the nebulas... They are absolutely fantastic!

Again, fantastic progress, with each of updates I really feel my money was well spent!
I wish I could say the same about all games :)
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Just_Ice_au » Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:37 pm

So ... Pretty ...

There are no words. :thumbup:
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby darker70 » Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:51 pm

Consider my jaw officially dropped LT is looking sweet !!

:thumbup: :thumbup:
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Vartul » Fri Jan 31, 2014 9:00 pm

dat scanner. Enough said.
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby DWMagus » Fri Jan 31, 2014 9:05 pm

Ixos wrote:Idea for the scanner:

It REALLY looks like a radar but doesn't work like one!

You know the radar that moves around and makes a "Blipp" in the sector where you got something interesting.

If you make the dial move around a bit faster (to not sit and wait for 20 seconds for a complete circle) and get stronger hits when moving across the right angle I think it could feel much more like a real working radar/Scanner.
This should also be alot more intuitive since right now the dial angle has zero actual functionality except for graphics effect.


Actually, this could lead to a couple things. First, let's not make it a radar. Instead, let's have your typical radar (however it's displayed) with it's specific range, but when you go into scanning mode, that range on the radar is extended. This way since we'll already need a radar, we can keep the two separate, but still utilize both to gain different information.
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Mordakai » Fri Jan 31, 2014 9:13 pm

While I love the scanner, I do find the visual effect to be at odds with the functionality.

The circular effect seems to imply that things are directional, acting like some sort of directional radar, suggesting that if you see a signature spike to the right, then whatever you're picking up might be to the right.

Now, if I'm mistaken and that is actually the case, great. But by the looks of it, the only relevant factor is whether you're looking at the thing you're searching for and it's within your sensor cone. Nothing really wrong with that functionality, but the continuous circular scanning effect doesn't real feel right when you're really just looking at the signal in front of you.

And more on that, how wide does the cone go? Ideally, I would hope it is possible to project the cone in all directions around your ship, so you can get some notice of things in all directions. This option could even be an always on 'typical radar' the guy above is talking about.
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Krin » Fri Jan 31, 2014 10:39 pm

I think the scanner works in a linear sense of time, projected onto a circular node.
As in the results of your scanner are displayed on the circle, past and present. You can also see this on the video.

So I'm guessing there is a lot of customization potential in the future. For example faster scanners, being able to "tune" scanners to size or frequency, etc.
I'd like to see specific sounds for specific types of signatures as well, and I think Josh hinted at that in the video.

I'm curious if players will be able to add onto the scan interface workspace. Like adding a zone overview of objects (similar to eve), see what types of ships are in the area, what types of ore, wrecks, etc....... so many options. (At least what's detected :twisted: )

Essentially being able to add more work-spaces and customize them accordingly.

I absolutely love the HUD overlay onto the game world, it gives players so many options. Like targeting a ships thrusters, scanning cargo holds / whole ships, disabling or damaging specific areas of a ship..... so much. :clap:

The video felt short to me, but I'm glad you got a lot done. :)
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Flatfingers » Sat Feb 01, 2014 12:46 am

Fascinating.

I mentioned in the most recent Fligher Podcast that I was looking forward to seeing and hearing more about scanning.

Well. Well, well, well. I think it's safe to say I can check that one off the list! So much potential for knowledge-presentation.

Whiiiiiich brings me to some questions.

1. With all the data that the scanner looks like it will be providing, I find myself now hoping that there's some very efficient way of documenting interesting information that's provided by the scanner: locations of static objects (so we can return to them quickly) and conformation of individual ships (and maybe even types of ships) are two things I can think of off the top of my head that I'd like to jot down somewhere.

2. The formatting of data as a circular, time-bound representation of information offers some other kinds of possibilities. As noted above, it looks like the height of a spike (reminds me a bit of Tempest) seems to be a marker for the strength of the signal corresponding to the one kind of thing the scanner is currently set to report on.

If so, that limits somewhat the value of the scanner. It's visually interesting that way, and it suggests the possibility of upgrading to a scanner with a faster display rate.

But what I imagine is a scanner where signals are mapped to frequencies, and all frequencies are displayed continuously. My Sensors and Star Trek Online sensor diagram suggested a linear version of this, but I really like Josh's circular display much more. To see a full spectrum of frequencies at once would still require the player to understand how to decode that information. The zoom in / zoom out feature would still be applicable, too.

Perhaps these display types could coexist. What about the idea of having a multispectral scanner that's good at passive scanning over a broad area, showing you the relative strength of different kinds of sources simultaneously, but for pinpointing sources you'd need to flip to the single-frequency scan mode as shown in today's video?

3. Speaking of how data are represented visually, let me recommend Edward Tufte's The Visual Display of Quantitative Information. If you're rendering information and you're not familiar with Tufte's work -- and with this book in particular -- go get it right now, because you need it.

4. Man, the flickering of the point light sources when doing a rotation is really bugging me. I've never been able to figure out how to prevent that in my own 3D space game, so it's possible that this is getting to me more than to others. But I'm finding it very distracting.

Am I a bad person?

5. Finally, I'm happy because I get to share something. Josh won't say this because he's all low-key in the video, which is entirely proper. But for you folks who haven't had the pleasure of doing programming, I wish you could know the incredible glee that a programmer feels when they create the kind of things that Josh is getting to show off in this video.

To imagine something in your mind, and then to know how to convert those structural images into instructions to a computer -- that's fun. But when you actually see your ideas come to life, and know that you brought them into existence solely through an almost instinctual knowledge of what those instructions have to look like... if Josh isn't pumping his fist in the air and hooting like a jackal when he first sees things like his scanner idea actually working, check his pulse. ;) I'm grinning like a fool and I didn't even write the code! I can only imagine how much fun he's having seeing his dreams become real and knowing that he has the power to tell a computer how to accomplish that plus a heck of a lot more.

Programming is awesome, is what I'm saying. :)

Thank you for another great video update, Josh!
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Lum » Sat Feb 01, 2014 2:44 am

That was another piece of art. Congratulations!

The HUD was just like I've imagined it could be. The immersive effect has the right mixture of intrusiveness and usefulness. So much potential there!

Oh, on the backside I missed lights on ships and stations, which was sort of a "promise" on the #12 vlog... A tradeoff I can live with, though.

Amazing stuff!
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Zak Gordon » Sat Feb 01, 2014 3:39 am

Awesome and amazing as ususal :)

One of the things i like best about the design and gameplay aspects of LT we have seen in Josh's video's and blogs, is that he isn't bending over backwards to simply ensure the game is just 'normal' in it's scope and interface. The game is really shaping up to be something quite unique and interesting, and it will require some adjustment from the typical gamer that has become used to just using WASD and Fire to play their games.

I'm not arguing for obtuse controls or gameplay, but i do feel one of the big turn offs for me in most AAA games these days is the 'designed by committee' streamlining, to the extent all games feel and play pretty much the same. LT looks different, it looks interesting and the design has been well thought out and executed. Very impressive as usual Josh, can't wait for the next update :D
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Rogtuok » Sat Feb 01, 2014 5:13 am

question about the scaner i saw that when you moved the scan are over an astroid with something on it or the workhole the hole area around the scaner registerd. will it be something like you have the circle of scan area of 90 deg and you just pass over a signal at the edge of it only that part of the scaner will register it or will it as in the movie register all around ?
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Re: Development Update #13: January 2014

Postby Etsu » Sat Feb 01, 2014 7:17 am

I like the background and the glass effect in the HUD. And I really loved the distorsion in the HUD. I hope will become optional, because there will be people who may not like it, but I loved it. :thumbup:

But... What about the Command Interface, the one that looked like an holographic representation of your surroundings taken from Stat Wars? I don't want to lose it, if only to give orders to my subordinates if one day I get to have a battlecruiser as the one seen in the Development Update #6 video. (By the way, that was one of the most beautiful spaceships you've shown us so far. Love it. ;))

In other news... I put my vote for slow scanners. I don't want everything to be easy and fast, so it loses its grace. For faster scanners, you need to invest and develop faster and better technology. Another interesting thing could be that the scanner operator may regulate the speed of the scanning. The slower the scanning, more accurate is the information received.

There could be some particularly valuable ores that require a slower and detailed scan to be found. Some ships with very expensive stealth technology, for example, could be very difficult to detect with the most common scan speeds. If you know you're looking for one of those, you may need you decrease the speed of the scanner to its minimum to have even a minimal chance of detecting them, of course if you own a scanner powerful enough to begin with.

Akarius Trent wrote:- will we be able to customize the hud color?

As seen in previous videos, a lot of things will be customizable, including HUD colors I presume. There is no reason why it will not be. ;)
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