Posts by wheybags

Friday Facts #330 - Main menu and File Share Shenanigans

Posted by Twinsen, wheybags on 2020-01-17

The main menu rework Twinsen Up until I looked at the source code, I was always confused about the differences between "Start campaign", "New game" and "Scenarios". New game seems like the same thing as "Scenarios"->"Freeplay", but are there any differences? We then later added a few more bonus scenarios, but they are hidden in the scenarios menu, with no explanation about what each is, what to expect or if it works in multiplayer. I believe it's very important to communicate to new players information about the game's content. It's also important to show that freeplay is the intended way to play. So all this prompted me to rework the main menu a bit. I started with the structure. The structure always seemed odd to me, compared to what I'm used to from other games. Important options like "Load game" are lost among options that are never used (like "Replay game"). So I came up with a new structure. It looks like this: Continue Single player New game Load game Multiplayer Host new game Host saved game Browse public games Browse LAN games Connect to address Map Editor New scenario Convert save Settings ... Mods About The first new thing to notice is the "Continue" button. Since "start the game and continue my last save" is probably the most common thing players will do, it makes sense that there is an option for this right at the top of the main menu. The button will contain the name of your latest save. Pressing it will immediately load the game and get you in game. Due to implementation complications, for now it only handles save games and it will NOT connect you to the last server you played on if your last play session was multiplayer, but I might implement that if it's highly requested. Next, everything was grouped into either Single player or Multiplayer. There are much fewer options, since "Replay game" was moved as a small button in "Load Game", and every way to start playing the game was moved to the new "New Game" GUI. The "New game" GUI shows all the ways to play the game. It also groups them nicely, places freeplay on top, shows a description and even a nice image. This GUI is used for new game, multiplayer hosting and map editor, thus simplifying the menu quite a bit. For modders, scenarios can now contain a description.json file. In the file "order" determines the sorting in the New Game GUI; "multiplayer-compatible" determines whether the scenario is shown when trying to host multiplayer games. "multiplayer-compatible" was added to description.json file of campaigns also.

Friday Facts #329 - Campaign reassessment

Posted by Klonan, Abregado, V453000, Wheybags on 2020-01-10

Merch store open again Klonan Our e-shop is now open again after taking a break over the holidays and new year. We have also restocked our new Factorio sew-on patches, so if you didn't manage to pick one up over the last weeks, now is your chance to order one.

Friday Facts #316 - Map editor Lua snippets & Non-colliding Biters

Posted by wheybags, Twinsen, Abregado, Klonan on 2019-10-11

Map editor Lua snippets wheybags In the last few weeks, we've really accelerated our work on the campaign. We've been pushing ahead a lot with both the scripting and blocking out the physical level design. One of the problems we've come up against a lot, is that we often need to perform custom edits to the map, which are quite tedious, but not common enough to add a new tool to the map editor for them. For example, something like "disable all the spawners in this region". This kind of problem is easily solved with a little bit of custom Lua code, but getting the specification of the area we want to edit into Lua is a painful process of noting down and typing out location coordinates. It is also easy to lose track of these Lua snippets, as there is no good place to save them. To solve this problem, we decided to add a Lua snippet tool to the map editor. This tool will let you drag your cursor over an area, and it will then run your custom Lua code on that area. The snippets are named, and saved in your player-data.json, so you can keep them around for later. For example, this simple snippet replaces trees with biters. Currently, there doesn't seem to be a very big scene for community made custom maps/scenarios with custom maps, and we're hoping that the example from the campaign once released, as well as the much improved editor we have in 0.17 will encourage more people to give this a go.

Friday Facts #309 - Controversial opinions

Posted by Twinsen, wheybags, TOGoS, posila, Rseding on 2019-08-23

The boring phase of bug-fixing is still going, slowly but surely. Stable should be released next week, but with some people on vacation (Ben, Jitka, kovarex, Klonan, Sanqui) and with the release of WoW Classic, it might get slowed down a bit. (By the way, some of us will be playing on Pyrewood Village, Alliance, so if you want to have the chance of meeting Twinsen, kovarex or dominik while leveling, you can join that server). So since there's not much happening, this week we decided to explore some unpopular or controversial opinions about the game from within the team. In Wube we don't have a very strict management structure, everyone is free to have ideas and opinions about almost all aspects of the game. This means that with almost every change we argue and discuss a lot before making a final decision. Sometimes we argue about everything, from the smallest GUI change, to how a major feature should work. This is probably not a bad thing since this means changes are usually well thought out and unpopular ideas or changes don't make it to the game very often. Some people feel quite strongly about their opinions or sometimes the team is very divided on what should we do. Today we'll share some of those opinions and controversies. Keep in mind that these are simply opinions and none of them will actually make it into the game, we are simply sharing them to have an interesting discussion.

Friday Facts #288 - New remnants, More bugs

Posted by Wheybags, Rseding, Dom, Albert on 2019-03-29

Removing RTL language translations Wheybags I'm sorry to say that we have removed the RTL language translations (Hebrew and Arabic) in 0.17.20. Until this point we've had a half implementation of RTL languages, where the text is simply flipped when we download it from Crowdin. This 'works' for a decent proportion of things, but not nearly 100%. In order to attain the level of polish we want for the 1.0 release, we would need to spend a lot of time implementing proper support for RTL layouts. This just doesn't make sense for us given our current goals, and the proportion of our player base which uses these languages (less than 0.1%). We decided that instead of completely gutting the translations, we could leave them in for those who enjoy them, but not to offer them in the GUI as defaults. The languages will remain up on Crowdin, and the locale files will still be present in game, but there will be no option in the in-game language options dialog to choose them. If you want to use an RTL language, you will have to manually edit your config file to set your locale. Detailed instructions are available on our forum. What this also means, is that we won't be investigating any bug reports about RTL issues.

Friday Facts #273 - Cutscene controller & Localisation plan

Posted by Oxyd, Wheybags, Klonan on 2018-12-14

Hello, we recieved a lovely holiday gift from Steam this week: The note reads: Happy Holidays! From the Steam Team The chocolates are delicious and do not seem to be lasting long...

Friday Facts #267 - Experiments, Explosives & Extended tags

Posted by kovarex, Rseding, Wheybags on 2018-11-02

Entity info experiments (kovarex) The Entity info is the information about the currently selected entity that appears on the right side of the screen: We had 2 problems with its current state: As it is on the side of the screen, and the entity you are inspecting is generally in the center, it feels cumbersome to move your eyes from the entity to the info and back all the time. As it is always appearing, it adds unnecessary clutter to the screen. It is always blinking there, while 99% of the time it is not really needed. So we experimented with entity info as a tooltip next to the cursor when hovering the entity: So we tested 3 different ways to activate it: It always appears at the cursor, which has the disadvantage of always being in your way in the middle of the screen. It always appears, but it has some delay. It only appears when a hotkey is pressed (we tested it with Shift), which has the disadvantage that you have to actually do something to see it. We assigned each of the options to be tested by someone, with the hope to figure out which (if any) of them is better than the current one. Vaclav tested option 1, Twinsen tested option 2 and I tested option 3. Unfortunately the result was that in the end everyone preferred his option the most, and we had no conclusion at all. Then we realized that the flaw of the test was that each of us picked the kind of option we already knew we would probably like. After some discussions, we decided on the following: The current version of entity info will be the default. We add an option to set a custom delay for it, that is different than the normal tooltip delay (or never). We add an option to activate it with a key. We add an option to have it next to cursor or on the side. Two years ago, I was under the impression, that we need to eradicate all the weird options, to make the game just work for everyone. Over time and after all experience and feedback we have gathered, I started to realize that different people have different expectations, and their brains are wired differently. Some option might be useless for 99% or players, but for the 1% of players, it might be the most annoying thing to be able to customize it.

Friday Facts #262 - Hello my name is: Compilatron

Posted by Abregado, Wheybags on 2018-09-28

In FFF-241 we discussed how the game delivers information to the player in a number of confused ways; Blinking arrows and circles, chat messages on the bottom left corner of the screen, objectives in the top left, orange modal boxes bubbles on top of the player, and so on. These problems are exacerbated on high resolution monitors, where the information becomes even further spread apart. We have tried a few ways to unify this information, but much of it was required to be in the world space, or needed to have a link between the screen space and the world space. The common solution to this is to have the GUI 'point' to an entity in the game world, but we wanted something more interesting.