Okay, watching the update for a 4th time already, I'm a bit past the
response, there have been plenty of that in this thread already. I had that response too, but instead I will share my criticisms/immediate suggestions. First, I LOVE the chapter format, you should absolutely do that from now on, the coherence allowed you to express more than you would have without it i think.UI/HUD
First thing I notice, your glyphs are pure math. every symbol you use is done constructed out of basic shapes. I get why you are doing that, I really do, but might i suggest, now that you have a drawing testbed, maybe try drawing some glyphs too? I get how that's not quite procedural, but you should leave something for Andy to do...
Just a thought on closing windows that you bring up: Since you want a dreamy feel to the game, rather than go with the default X in the upper left corner, maybe have something around the perimeter of the window which closes it. I suspect, that especially in tense situations with fly by cursor, that little X will have a statistical pull on the player to the upper left. Also, I always hate when a UI makes me throw my cursor all over a screen from one small icon to another in a hurry. Note how when you closed the window from the X, the ship was right next to it, easy to click on, but what if it was on the other side of the screen?
For targets in the reticle(sp?) I liked the targeting feature, but what real gain does placing them on the perimeter of the reticle in addition to the perimeter of the screen give you? My immediate thoughts are that your reticle should display information in 3D, so that your targets can actually go into into its boundaries, maybe changing color in the process, to indicate there position behind you... Just a thought.
Scanner, again beautiful... but as has been suggested before, if it was zoomable, you could fit some serious amount of information in there. As some additional thoughts, i think a passive "listen your way through the static" would be cool, where you can just hear the mixed frequencies of everything around you all at once... Makes it a bit more realistic than reticle(cursor) over area shows me X. If instead you heard everything (adjusted for distance) and the scanner merely showed you that isolated signal hiding in the background (because you cataloged it already) then that would be awesome. One more additional thought on that, if you went with that "all nearby objects produce a scanner peak, scanner recolors and identifies cataloged peaks" there should be a way to click on your scanner, and have an icon pop up in the reticle, indicating the source of the signal on your radar.
Your planets are beautiful, but I really think they should put off signals too, They shouldn't be dead bodies in space where things land, but rather rich and living things with storms sweeping across their surface, Auroras at their poles, great oceans of water or magma or methane. These things on a planet should broadcast signals out into space, detectable from almost as far away as wormholes or the central star. Information about a planet and its makeup would be invaluable to explorers and generals alike.Graphics
Good God your nebulae are beautiful. But this response is to be critical! Do you need space flecks in dusty zones? you have the asteroids to indicate your movement, at any rate they are too strong in general, and too strong to the point of distracting in dusty areas.
Dusty zones look AMAZING from within, and that is part of why I am conflicted over this next criticism. Your dusty zones, seem to have way too much dust in them. They are practically opaque to the outside from within, if you were going to get any semblance of coherence to how dusty from the outside they are, they would be entirely opaque... I think either you are going to have to lighten up on the dust in zones, or admit that dusty zones will look like blobs in space. I mean I guess that is an aesthetic you can go for, and thunderclouds in space certainly have their place, but i think a much lighter approach to them would be better for the overall picture... But as I said, I am conflicted by this suggestion because of how beautiful they are from the inside.... I guess what I am asking for is a variety of dust levels, with what you have now being towards the heavy end, while in other places, there would just be a tiny amount of dust, but if you looked at the central star through the dusty zone, it would look much like your heavy zones do while you are inside them.
The fading of the dust as you leave is beautiful, but seems almost too smooth. I think if you added noise to the dust, letting it form clumps of dust and pockets of clear, it would look prettier.Colonies and Culture
"What happens when one AI player loves another very much" THIS!!!!!!! This is where I want to see the AI going... I want to see how their interpersonal relationships will be.... granted, maybe a bit much for now, but this is the sort of thing that I think you should definitely find a way to get in.
Cultural traits: I love that you have all this information about them running, and that this sort of thing dictates their behavior, I really do. Just HIDE IT! Nothing would break my immersion faster than to see bars which say exactly how aggressive or greedy they are.
Spacial Coherence: Like Flatfingers, I LOVE this, however I think that there should be some hard barriers too. I would really like to see some massive differences not too far from each other... Seoul and Kaesong (DPRK) are 54km and yet they are worlds apart culturally. Again like nebulae and zones, I think a higher level of variety which controls how different any one location is from another is also pretty important... Soft rolling hills vs steep cliffs. Thinking back to Korea, even some De-Militarized zones, where two enemy factions come face to face, but don't fight... forming uneasy bonds in a few select locations, and where both sides tolerate no funny business from anyone, would be fairly interesting to see.LTSL/Live Coding
Can't really be all that critical here... but know that this game is one of the main reasons I am learning to code. The Future of LT DEV
You should make a number of testbeds that even the most unskilled of players can go into and start messing with things to create interesting stuff, after release though
Maybe even have a catalog with snippets of code that can be plugged into various areas.