Official RPG Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

GUI and Colors

Discussion in 'Iron Tower Studio' started by vazquez595654, Aug 13, 2006.

  1. vazquez595654 Arbiter

    vazquez595654
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,090
    Location:
    Malta
    I don't know who is responsible for the GUI, but it looks atrocious. It doesn't match the game at all. The picture on the front of your website looks amazing, yet when you go to the screenshots section you see these ugly ass pics with the ugly tan/brown repeating texture that looks like a Windows background reject. I know GUI's are rather time-consuming to make, so at the very least could you invert the colors so were not staring into a light bulb? In other words a dark background with light text? It's what you use for your own website, it's how Fallout was set up, and it's what the Codex uses as well.

    Some color suggestions:

    The cracked wet/glued stone/glass/tile from your website (behind the red ribbons) would look nice. Even though it's a similar color to what you have now, I think it would look nice and sophisticated.
    http://www.irontowerstudio.com/screenshots.htm

    other suggestions

    Dark wood grain
    Dark shiny brown marble (Betrayal at Krondor style)
    Dark grey stone


    [​IMG]

    The first game ever to display the base stats horizontally. Why? Not that it makes a tangible difference but it is more difficult to read.

    Why not show the base stats vertically on the left side of the screen. Move the Combat skills over the General skills (so they are intuitively in the same column) and if there is room, maybe move Traits and Ranks to the bottom left (similar to where they are in Fallout) than maybe do something with the extra space or just shift everything over a little to the right.

    Oh, and while I am hammering your game, is it really necessary to have the grids filled in with blue in combat? I understand being able to see the grid is important, but wouldn't an outline still do the job, while being less blue err... distracting?

    Yes/No? Nothing personal, just wanted to be honest with what I thought.
     
    ^ Top  
  2. k_bits Scholar

    k_bits
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Messages:
    210
    You know, until Vazquez mentioned it, I hadn't noticed. It *is* a little hard on the eyes, cool weathered map look not withstanding. Maybe have an option to reverse colours or change the background? (Seeing it's a repeating background, I'm assuming it's just one Jpeg or gif file that needs changing?)

    Personally, I like the blue grid just as is.

    Also Vault, I can't remember - did you settle on having weather effects / night and day cycles or not?
     
    ^ Top  
  3. Claw Erudite Patron

    Claw
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2004
    Messages:
    3,777
    Location:
    The center of my world.
    Project: Eternity Divinity: Original Sin 2
    Great deal it must be, then.
     
    ^ Top  
  4. k_bits Scholar

    k_bits
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Messages:
    210
    It's slightly annoying, yes, especially for those of us with bad eyesight. I can deal with it, but alternative backround graphics would be appreciated.
     
    ^ Top  
  5. Claw Erudite Patron

    Claw
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2004
    Messages:
    3,777
    Location:
    The center of my world.
    Project: Eternity Divinity: Original Sin 2
    There is nothing to be said against alternative backgrounds, if it's not too difficult to implement.

    I'd rather have no change of the default GUi though. Well, unless I see it and it's looking good, which I don't expect from simply inverting the colour sheme.
     
    ^ Top  
  6. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,806
    Not the GUI thing again....
    http://www.nma-fallout.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=19190


    That would be me.

    Quite possibly, but I like it. It's very PnP-ish.

    There are a LOT of people who think that the game looks like shit, in which case the GUI matches the game perfectly.

    So, it's the picture that the GUI doesn't match. Different story.

    We are targeting the unsophisticated market like the Codex rabble. I'm afraid that any attempts to add some class or sophistication would turn them off.

    I'll be honest with you, Vasquez. I know that you think that I'm a great artist - and you are right, of course - but I have no fucking clue what dark shiny brown marble is. So, here is a wacky idea. If someone doesn't like the interface, design a new one. Show me, instead of giving me vague hints.

    I'm not being a dick, but we don't have time to sit around and play with what's done and works right now. We've "scheduled" to review GUI - everything from character screen to trading, when everything else is done. These and other minor reviews already will cost us 6 extra weeks, so any help is appreciated.

    I liked it that way. Why? It's been 2 years ago, so I don't remember the details.

    Scheduled to be reviewed. I want to finish the game first, and then go over every feature and element.

    Being honest is cool. No hard feelings. Your opinions and suggestions are noted and appreciated.
     
    ^ Top  
  7. whatusername Scholar

    whatusername
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    burp
    When I think about it, the stat screen looks very similar to Mount & Blade's colour theme & text.
     
    ^ Top  
  8. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,806
    It does? Not intentional.
     
    ^ Top  
  9. Joff1981 Educated

    Joff1981
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2006
    Messages:
    59
    Project: Eternity
    I have to say I agree with vazquez about the horizontal primary/secondary stats, I find it doesn't make them as clear as they should be. A vertical layout with primary stats followed by derived stats, in a similar fashion to fallout would be better IMO.

    Another issue I have with this screen is the wasted space at the bottom. Why show us the general description box and the greyed out box when they are irrelevant to anything we would be doing on this screen. Much better to fill the screen with the stat panel and fully utilise the available space.
     
    ^ Top  
  10. EEVIAC Erudite

    EEVIAC
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2003
    Messages:
    1,186
    Location:
    Bumfuck, Nowhere
    The first thing I think when I see that character sheet is "FUCKING HELL, SKILLS!" The general look of it isn't processed for a fair while after that. I've always been in favour of light text on a dark background but I don't think there's anything inherently bad about the way it looks. Like VD said, the layout is reminiscent of a PnP sheet.

    One suggestion I would make is do away with the description box at the bottom (as well as the derived stats from base attributes) and just list them in mouse-over pop-ups.
     
    ^ Top  
  11. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,806
    Hey EEVIAC, long time no see.

    Why bother? It's already there and it works. Unless we do a complete overhaul because people can't deal with the horizontal stat setup and go into either a frenzy or coma...
     
    ^ Top  
  12. EEVIAC Erudite

    EEVIAC
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2003
    Messages:
    1,186
    Location:
    Bumfuck, Nowhere
    Why bother? Because I prefer it that way and I'm always right. I like mouse-over text.

    Seriously though, one of the strengths of the character sheet is that its clean and utilitarian. There's a lot of information to be conveyed so the simpler the better.
     
    ^ Top  
  13. Paranoid Jack Scholar

    Paranoid Jack
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Messages:
    186
    I see no reason to change anything. Its simple and effective. Works for me.

    Yeah, some people may not like the color or lay-out... you could spend another hundred hours reworking it... and the same would be true.

    Its effective and it fits the style of the dialog scenes posted. So unless you are reworking the dialog screens (which look fine by the way) why bother. Focus on the game-play not something cosmetic.
     
    ^ Top  
  14. GhanBuriGhan Erudite

    GhanBuriGhan
    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    1,170
    It's not gonna win any beauty contest, in fact I even agree that its ugly. But it works. If someone has the time to design a better looking background, or even layout, great. If not, big deal. This should be somewhere near the bottom of the priority list.
     
    ^ Top  
  15. obediah Erudite

    obediah
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Messages:
    5,051
    The text is harder to read than I'd like, but other than that, who cares. Maybe you can modify the game to read in color/font preferences from an .Xdefaults or .emacs file? :)
     
    ^ Top  
  16. Twinfalls Erudite

    Twinfalls
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Messages:
    3,903
    Or even better, let us type in 'poke 53281, X'
     
    ^ Top  
  17. whatusername Scholar

    whatusername
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    619
    Location:
    burp
    The UI doesn't look post-apoc enough.
     
    ^ Top  
  18. FrancoTAU Cipher

    FrancoTAU
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2005
    Messages:
    2,507
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    I don't mind the blue grid lines at all. Horizontal stat lines don't bother me either since its not like they're changing during gameplay anyways.

    The UI color doesn't bother me, but makes me keep thinking of the setting being a desolate dessert type place. If that's what you're going for than it works.

    My only UI nitpick would be that the graphic screen seems to be really small in comparison to all the other stuff when you're in dialogue mode. It's not a deal breaker for me, but if you can change it up than great.
     
    ^ Top  
  19. Paranoid Jack Scholar

    Paranoid Jack
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Messages:
    186
    If I am not mistaken the main reason the graphics shot of the Player Character talking to the NPC is small is because the dialog is what is important while you are on that screen you are in direct conversation with whichever NPC is shown and the main reason the small window shot was added was to give you a feel for who and what NPC you are talking to while you navigate the dialog tree since it (the dialog tree) will most likely be ten times more complicated (longer with much more choice) than the average cRPGs
    (sometimes called or know as "best RPG evar") released today so we should all be happy to have the little shot.

    edit: Not to mention in other "Best RPG Evars" where the NPC's head takes up fifty percent of the screen the dialog options suffer severely. So it seems the designers by giving you the big talking head NPC were forced to cut down the dialog options to something like this...

    Big Reptilian Head NPC, "Chosen One, have you come to me seeking knowledge? Are you perhaps wondering why my head takes up so much of the screen yet the dialog options are slim to none?"

    The Chosen One,

    1) "Yes, I was wondering that very thing... also what do I do with this Special Code from my Collector's Edition version of the Best RPG Evar?"

    2) "No, I wasn't even bothered by the hugeness of your reptilian head with all the HDR blended colors of the rainbow."

    3) "Nevermind... I had some vague assumption that this was a cRPG. Not an Action RPG-lite. Goodbye."


    So if you subtract all my sarcasm what I am basically saying is I like the small shot of the conversation with the larger screen section for all the dialog options. :?
     
    ^ Top  
  20. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,806
    Yep. Some NPCs have a lot to say, and often you are given 5-6 options, so we do need the space for the text. Originally we didn't even plan to have that little window, it was one of the suggestions.
     
    ^ Top  
  21. Crichton Prophet

    Crichton
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,101
    I think it would look a lot better if you had more space for the characters so the dialog "window" doesn't take up 3/4 of the screen. Other games accomplish this with either semi-transparent dialog windows or having dialog displayed horizontally across the bottom (of course that would necessitate shrinking the huge-ass UI that's already on the bottom).
     
    ^ Top  
  22. Paranoid Jack Scholar

    Paranoid Jack
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Messages:
    186
    D'oH!

    I guess he didn't understand what we were just commenting on... what we just posted.

    VD, I read that post here on the forums were somebody had suggested having a smallish shot of the NPC/PC conversing and I think its a great idea. It appears some would rather have the NPC Humongous Head version a la Oblivion but I think your version will be liked by far more than oppose it. And besides its your game make it your way. As they say you can't please everyone...

    I would guess the majority of the people who are visiting this site and this thread are just not posting because they understand and know why it is the dialog section is taking up so much space on the dialog screen. :wink:
     
    ^ Top  
  23. Crichton Prophet

    Crichton
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,101
    If you'll re-read the post, the point was that it's quite possible to have just as much text on the screen without shoving the game-world into a postage-stamp-sized corner of the screen through the use of

    a) text-window transparency

    b) a smaller UI on the bottom (most obviously the weapon/attack option panels don't need to be the size of playing cards, squash them down)
     
    ^ Top  
  24. Paranoid Jack Scholar

    Paranoid Jack
    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2006
    Messages:
    186
    I understand what you were commenting on and mine was more or less a smart-ass or sarcastic comment. Forgive me.

    But since it is just a matter of taste I doubt they will change it this late in the development. In the original thread it was debated and requested. VD decided to add the small shot of the PC conversing with the NPC. Most of us like it the way it is now and see no need to change anything. I would think Iron Tower are of the same frame of mind. Since it is more or less a cosmetic issue even to the few who don't like it.

    Again, this is a four person team for the most part (who had another four artists assisting). An "indie" studio creating a game with ambitious role-playing options. Uber graphics with "semi-transparent dialog windows" were not on the design doc from my assumption. Not that they couldn't have added some transparency to the GUI if they chose to.

    My guess is they were shooting for a more old school look and feel from day one. With ten times more dialog options than most of us are used to getting from the current cRPG market. Obviously the dialog is the most important thing on the screen at that moment in the game why worry about the NPC? This is not Oblivion were the NPC will be attempting to lip-sync the dialog.

    Not sure if you realize it but the game was originally 2D but went 3D because a lot of posters urged them to go 3D. So unless you want this game to turn into the next vapour-ware product and give Duke Nukem Forever a run for his money let them finish it the way they see fit.

    I am sure they have weighed their choices as best they could. And in my opinion with all things considered... it looks damned good from this end. Besides it isn't about graphics... its about game-play.
     
    ^ Top  
  25. John Yossarian Cipher

    John Yossarian
    Joined:
    May 8, 2006
    Messages:
    991
    Location:
    Pianosa
    Actually if you look at http://www.rpgcodex.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=7403&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=100
    it was pretty much the opposite. I actually felt bad for VD for having to explain his decisions to the seemingly angry posters. Im glad they got a handle on Torque engine and were to keep the project on track, but boy there were some pissed off people on that thread.

    On topic: I like the current GUI, its much better than the one they had initially where only dialog was shown, but it still places the focus on the dialog, where it should be. I see the character window as an utility, just to make sure you know who you're talking to and not keep the world and dialog so separated. But since the current dialog GUI accomplishes that imo, i don't see the need to change it.
     
    ^ Top  

As an Amazon Associate, rpgcodex.net earns from qualifying purchases.