Dev changes – 12/17

Well, Christmas is getting closer and it’s getting more difficult to find time to work on the game during the holiday season. However, a new dev build is available and has the following changes:

  • Some of the Polish language translation is working
  • The scouting and colonization reports now automatically resize text fonts if the text is too large to fit (this is for the translations)
  • A couple of crashes related to translations are fixed
  • The Darlok ground combat animations are in the game
  • A good chunk of the Darlok GNN screen is in, but it’s not finished yet

The latest dev build can always be found here:

I hope to get the Darlok GNN UI and the new Colonies UI done before Christmas vacation, but that’s about it.

As a reminder. All of the dev builds will disable on January 1st.

Dev changes – 12/9

Anothe dev build, 2016.12.09, is available. It adds the following:

  • You can once again rename a system when you colonize it. This had stopped working when I created logic to handle race-specific lists of system names a few months ago. Of course, you can still rename systems in the Colonies listing.
  • When you launch a transport, it stops drawing the original flight path from the previous system. This bug snuck in when I revamed the UIs.
  • The minor alerts detailed in a blog post yesterday have been added to the game. You’ll get them when:
    • You catch an enemy spy
    • An enemy spy steals a tech or blows up factories or bases

More minor alerts will be added later, most notably when transports fail to land on planets successfully.

The latest dev build can always be found here:

As a reminder. All of the dev builds will disable on January 1st.

Informational Notifications

Spent some time tonight working with our graphic designer on how informational notices should look. Things like “Bulrathi spies destroyed 2 factories on Nazin” or “All Alkari transports attempting to land on Meklar have been destroyed” are mostly informational and optional. However, a mechanism needs to exist for presenting these events to players who want to see them without making uninterested players have to wade through them.

This is the look we came up with (see yellow notice on bottom right):

post-it dialog-01.png

The criteria for these were pretty strict:

  • Has to be out of the way and easily ignored by players who don’t care
  • Has to stand out visually to draw players’ attention on the infrequent occasions in which they show up
  • Should require a minimum of clicking to interact with
  • Has to be visually intuitive on how to get close them

There’s not a lot you can do with these requirements. I tried to convey a “Post It” mentality with notes that pop up and can then be easily dismissed. On the turns when they show up, they will exist in the empty space above the Next Turn button and are colored to draw attention. This mentions a lot of existing colors already used on the UI (grays, blues and greens) could not be used.

The Year display that is normally right above the Next Turn button remains in the same place, but integrated with the note. When they are dismissed, the year display will still be there.

When you hit Next Turn, any remaining notifications from the previous turn will be cleared out automatically.

Kaitlin, the graphic designer, ended up with “I don’t really like how they look, but they are effective in their purpose.”  I’m calling that a win and moving on.

These will probably show up in tomorrow’s dev build.