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Why was the interface not developed further?


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Of course it does. It's disingenuous to suggest that the because it's an opinion it doesn't have any basis.

I didn't say or imply that. Some opinions are more valid than others, of course. And of course everybody likes to presume their opinion is one of the more valid types. It's Human nature. But the more someone expresses an opinion as if there aren't other ways of looking at things, then the more that person is treating their opinion as fact rather than opinion.

With UI, in general, there's vastly more personal opinion than there is factual basis. Look at all the comments here saying they don't have any, or minimal, problems with the UI. In your opinion the UI is close to a disaster. So are the others wrong and you right? Well, in your mind yes. In their minds you're the one that is wrong. And various shades inbetween.

It's like a lot of games. It has a lot of the same things to give users a way of doing.

With UI the devil is always in the detail. Small differences can matter more than large swaths of similarity.

A few habits, yes. However, the game doesn't make it easy to learn those habits because it doesn't make them habits. The difference between moving on from a unit that's last been ordered a waypoint, and from one which was given any other sort of order means that the user has to learn not to use something that works, even when it would.

Combat Mission has used Right Click to de-select units for 11 years. Many people here have put in thousands of hours into Combat Mission. If they haven't developed a habit of using Right Click to deselect by now I'll eat my hat :D

Basically, it's not true. It's already entirely possible to make a shift-dragbox group selection if you don't have any unit previously selected. It just takes the first unit you drag across as the reference point if you've not got a selection. So the only reason to have shift-dragbox add to the current selection is so that you can add multiple shift-dragbox groups together. Compared to the possible FUBAR of creating unintentional associations, this doesn't seem to me to be adding anything to the controls.

Perhaps not. It is something that can be looked at, though it is nice to have a selected unit, shift-drag to select the units around it, and click down some movement Commands based around your current unit. FUBAR can happen with the alternative too by the player not changing which unit is the current unit. FUBAR, therefore, is a risk no matter which method is employed.

Another life, I'm afraid, and they're all down the swanee now. I'm not claiming they were RT high-graphics environments, they weren't. They were database front ends for the most part. However, the basic principles of HMI design do apply to pretty much any interface.

The difference is a game stresses "pretty much any" to the limits. There are definitely some principles that carry across most games most of the time. Take a database frontend UI experience and try applying it to graphics program or a CAD application and see how much moves over without significant customization and modification.

In fact, there's a good example for you. There's basically two major 3D authoring packages out there. From what I understand the two have more dissimilar than similar when it comes to UI. Yet they perform nearly the same function as programs. Bad UI or just different UI? Matter of opinion, and from what I've seen passion is involved as well.

I don't think there's any school which suggests that having the same basic function (moving to the next unit by clicking on it, for example) work differently depending on irrelevant previous activity is a Good Thing.

Of course not, but where is that in CM? You can click on any unit, friend or foe, using left click. All the time, every time *unless* you are putting down movement Commands that require Waypoints. Which allows you to continue using Left Click which is far more natural to use than Right Click. Right Click, in turn, is always used for deselecting a unit.

Well, perhaps we wouldn't have the exquisite internal detail of the tanks; I don't know which of your resources does which bits of the game. But I remain astonished that the interface is such a low priority.

Of course you're astonished... you haven't any practical experience with what it takes to make a game like this, nor how much work it takes to get UI functioning. And you're not taking my word for it either.

In your database GUI time... did you have to program scrolling behavior, including buffering and input behaviors? Did you have to program the little "thumb" in the scroll bar to show the user where he was in relation to the entirety of the document being scrolled? I doubt it. Windows and Mac UIs have library calls for that and the OS handles most of it with little work on the programmer's standpoint. No such API exists for a game unless it is running in a window within the OS. For performance and overhead reasons that's impossible to do with a 3D game. So that means someone has to program that behavior, and it is time consuming to do that. Which is why Windows and Mac OS have APIs for such behaviors.

Think about it this way. We've got about 7 years invested into CMx2's codebase. We have worked full time, and overtime by most people's standards, for all 7 of those years. Non stop. And yet the list of things people want in their game continues to grow as we increase expectations and diversify the game's subject matter. It's all well and fine to say that we should spend 2 months overhauling the whole UI if you also understand that would have meant no bridges/water, no trees, no WW2 ballistics behavior, etc. for CM:BN. What good is a super slick UI if nobody wants to play the game it's built around?

If we were making brainless RTS games for the masses our priorities would be wrong. But we're not so our priorities are where they should be. And now that the we've completed most of the the essential basics of both Modern and WW2 warfare, in both desert and temperate environments, we are going to devote quite a big chunk of time to improving the UI.

Steve

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Camera movement stops too soon beyond the map edges? Really? You're really going to complain about that?

Its a valid complaint. I have had to change camera angles numermous times because of it. Its not my top complaint, but from a usability standpoint it is valid.

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Lack of on-screen tutorial, tool tips and a clunky interface are the biggest turn-offs for the non-hardcore gamer.

Friend of mine downloaded the demo but just couldnt bring himself to teach himself the game from ground up, somehow flicking between hard-to-read manual and baffling new game system.

Now, it's a given that us hardcore will go through the hoops and stick with it. But a game like this could break to a much bigger market with improvements in tutorial and interface.

Improvements in these areas will bring much more to this game than extra detailing on tank models, in both player enjoyment and unit sales.

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I really can't get to grips with why casual gamers have difficulty with the game....I've played a fair few mainstream RTS titles that for me where alot harder and more confusing than CMBN...which is why I hate RTS mainstream games...

I've never seen so many complaints on a forum that strike as nit picking to be honest...some things people are moaning about I've never even noticed...infact my jaw drops when reading this forum at times...

Also people need to rememebr this isn't a game for the masses...it's a niche wargame for wargamers...if you dumb it down to much you may aswell be making a mainsream RTS...which this wargame isn't and never was going to be...Company of heroes and Men at War cover that end of the market...those who want a more realsitic experience have CMBN...

Oh by the way the UI is no where near a disaster...infact we may need a couple of more orders...but apart from that it's easy to use and self explanetary...I have serious worries for the people who find it very difficult or bordering on a disaster...I suggest to them to go and find another game that suits their needs....

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We have limited resources. The more we invest in trying to attract players outside of our normal sphere, the less there is to interest our critical customer mass. It's a dangerous adventure that we have to avoid getting too heavily invested in.

The truth is, CM is a deep and complex game. It's not easy to be successful, not to mention master. The vast majority of gamers out there never have, and never will, like the degree of challenge presented by games like CM. There could be naked 3D representations of various porn stars and celebrities walking around the battlefield giving tutorial tips, and they STILL wouldn't play the game (though I shudder to think what they would do with the Tutorial ;)).

Can we make CM's presentation more appealing to fence sitters? Yes, definitely. And we are working that in every chance we get. 1:1 graphics wasn't just about gameplay, neither was RT. Those were also intended to increase the potential audience as well as improve the core wargaming experience. Win-win stuff is what we're looking to invest serious time into. That way we can net increase the game's popularity instead of trading off sales or, potentially, shrinking our appeal.

Steve

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The only thing that I'd like to see change is the way a player determines if a squad has LoS. Both from current position, or from a waypoint(s). I have spent enough time with the engine that orders are really quick using hotkeys. I watched Tyrspawn manually issue orders from the UI and remember thinking, huh that would drive me crazy.

But the one thing that takes me forever is LoS.

Currently I have to use a combination of target command, and TAB + 1 to switch views to eyeball LOS. The latter isn't guaranteed as what you see isn't always what you can target, and TARGET can only be done from current position or once a waypoint is set.

If your trying to move a unit to a location that has LOS to point A, it's often trial and error...requiring multiple re-try's. I have to delete the waypoint, issue a new move order and plop a new waypoint down, Hit TARGET, then search for the spot you want to be able to fire on, rinse repeat.

Also, the line doesn't always show where LOS is broken which doesn't help.

I know I was often frustrated in SF by this, but it's much more frequent now. This isn't the Syrian desert, and the maps are loaded with LOS blocking terrain.

And on defensive SP missions, or any PBEM, the LOS time factor jumps up by a large factor.

I am not sure what would be the best solution. An toggle able shaded overlay of what the unit or waypoint(!!!) has LOS to, would cut a huge chunk of time off the game.

At a minimum, I'd like to see an actual LOS order independant of TARGET, that shows where LOS is blocked. At least that way I can see where I need to move to.

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This is actually an issue that goes way back to the original release of CMBO. The primary issue here is that we purposefully restrict LOS information from being randomly sampled around the battlefield. CMx2 actually is EASIER to do this than in CMx1 because in CMx1 you could only do it from where the unit ended the last turn at, not from a Waypoint.

It's a design decision on our part. Making LOS easy to obtain, from any point at any time, would mean more precision in planning. Precision that simply isn't realistic and greatly adds to the already existing "time compression" problem that CM, and all wargames, suffer from. Hence why we're not rushing to implement any feature that makes it deliberately easier to sample LOS at any point :D

The way I handle this is to make smaller moves, sample at the ends of my moves, and then move accordingly. I play in RT so this might cost me some time, and attention from other stuff, but it works out pretty well. In WeGo it might cost you a turn, which isn't entirely great, but it's not entirely wrong either.

I never check LOS from a Waypoint. Ever. Even though I was the one that designed the system to specifically allow this :D

The Target Command should be showing LOS blockages accurately as best as it can. The last bit is important because LOS can be blocked or not blocked at different heights and according to different stances. This is a new feature to CMx2 added around v1.06 of Shock Force. Which means it's really not possible to show you all possible LOS possibilities because there are simply too many to show.

Steve

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Not having read the whole thread, here's my contribution: Tooltips.

Tooltips are the way you learn most strategy games. This game would be significantly more accessible if every UI Button had a tooltip with a paragraph describing what it does. How exactly does move differ from quick and slow? Hover over the buttons for 1 second and you have your answer. No digging through the manual's table of contents, just hover. This has been implemented in every game i can think of except this one. There are 0 tooltips. There should be more :) I can't imagine a little text would suck up enough resources to rule it out.

Maybe in the next version?

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At the risk of flogging a dead horse:

Perhaps not. It is something that can be looked at, though it is nice to have a selected unit, shift-drag to select the units around it, and click down some movement Commands based around your current unit. FUBAR can happen with the alternative too by the player not changing which unit is the current unit. FUBAR, therefore, is a risk no matter which method is employed.

Nah, that's SNAFU, not FUBAR :) At least in WeGo, if you've got "all paths" showing, you'll see that your group's getting all clusterfragged because your 'focus' wasn't where you thought it was, and can redo. In RT, you can cancel before they get very far. With the 'stray' unintended additional selection, it could be over the other side of the map and not at all obvious.

Of course not, but where is that in CM? You can click on any unit, friend or foe, using left click. All the time, every time *unless* you are putting down movement Commands that require Waypoints.

Or if you've got the support interface open.

That's two exceptions. You can left-click on the ground to deselect, too. Except in those two exceptions. The fact that those exceptions exist greatly hinders the learning of the habit of right-click-to-deselect. It simply interferes with the conditioning necessary for something easily to become a habit.

Which allows you to continue using Left Click which is far more natural to use than Right Click.

For you, maybe :) You've been doing this longer 'n me.

Right Click, in turn, is always used for deselecting a unit.

That bit is, indeed, consistent. If you made it so that you couldn't click on to the next unit until you'd deselected the current one, and made it so that left-clicking on the ground didn't deselect, it would at least be consistent.

In your database GUI time... did you have to program scrolling behavior, including buffering and input behaviors? Did you have to program the little "thumb" in the scroll bar to show the user where he was in relation to the entirety of the document being scrolled? I doubt it.

Nope. Someone had already done that work.

Windows and Mac UIs have library calls for that and the OS handles most of it with little work on the programmer's standpoint. No such API exists for a game unless it is running in a window within the OS. For performance and overhead reasons that's impossible to do with a 3D game. So that means someone has to program that behavior, and it is time consuming to do that. Which is why Windows and Mac OS have APIs for such behaviors.

What language is the game programmed in? Are there no prewritten libraries you can raid for this sort of functionality?

Think about it this way. We've got about 7 years invested into CMx2's codebase. We have worked full time, and overtime by most people's standards, for all 7 of those years. Non stop. And yet the list of things people want in their game continues to grow as we increase expectations and diversify the game's subject matter. It's all well and fine to say that we should spend 2 months overhauling the whole UI if you also understand that would have meant no bridges/water, no trees, no WW2 ballistics behavior, etc. for CM:BN. What good is a super slick UI if nobody wants to play the game it's built around?

I'd've been happy with static water, shadows and trees, personally, if that could've meant some time spent on the interface. This game's not all about the eyecandy, after all (which is one of the reasons I love it).

...we are going to devote quite a big chunk of time to improving the UI.

I'm not going to hold my breath. Cos I can only manage a bit over a minute, and even you guys aren't that good :) 'Bate it a bit, perhaps. It's a good game, a classic, wanting only a more pleasant user interface to transform it into a great one. In, obviously, my opinion.

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Nah, that's SNAFU, not FUBAR :) At least in WeGo, if you've got "all paths" showing, you'll see that your group's getting all clusterfragged because your 'focus' wasn't where you thought it was, and can redo. In RT, you can cancel before they get very far. With the 'stray' unintended additional selection, it could be over the other side of the map and not at all obvious.

I've made the mistake a few times when I'm in a rush. I instantly see that I've done a boo-boo, hit DELETE, stop them cold, select the unit I wanted to have be the focal point by clicking on it's icon, then try again. One key stroke, one click. It's not a big deal. If the unintended focus unit is not even supposed to be in the group then add one SHIFT-CLICK into the mix. Your suggested way has the same potential for making a mistake and the remedy is about the same. So I don't really see one being better than the other inherently, though I have no problem saying that an individual might find one more/less frustrating than the other depending on personal play style.

Or if you've got the support interface open.

Sure, it's a voluntarily invoked modal environment. I don't see any conceptual problem there.

That's two exceptions. You can left-click on the ground to deselect, too. Except in those two exceptions. The fact that those exceptions exist greatly hinders the learning of the habit of right-click-to-deselect. It simply interferes with the conditioning necessary for something easily to become a habit.

I don't smoke, I don't do drugs, I don't drink to excess, I don't womanize, I don't have an addictive personality. I have no problems making a habit out of right-click for deselecting. There's nothing preventing me from developing that habit because it always works. Having alternative methods for deselecting units doesn't mean the primary habit isn't formed. I can drive into town several different ways. But I have a habit of driving one particular way. I dunno... maybe I have exceptional level of intelligence that allows me to be able to do these amazing activities!

For you, maybe :) You've been doing this longer 'n me.

I bet the average CM:SF player has way more seat time than I do. And I haven't touched CMx1 for ages. I somehow manage :)

That bit is, indeed, consistent. If you made it so that you couldn't click on to the next unit until you'd deselected the current one, and made it so that left-clicking on the ground didn't deselect, it would at least be consistent.

There's no reason to NOT have left-click on the ground deselect a unit when you aren't engaged in putting down Movement Commands. The presence of an alternative doesn't inherently cause utter confusion in the mind of the player. In fact, because UI can never be all things to all people it is critical to have as many different ways to do things as possible. For example, the keyboard can navigate the camera. Some people only use the keys for this. I never do. I use the mouse. How is it that the presence of the option to move the camera by the keyboard could possible interfere with my ability to use the camera by mouse?

Nope. Someone had already done that work.

Exactly.

What language is the game programmed in? Are there no prewritten libraries you can raid for this sort of functionality?

That a programmer would want to use? I highly doubt it. When you work in a performance and resource hungry environment you tend to find it's more work to integrate someone else's code than it is to write it yourself. And since the time to write it ourselves is considered in excess of its value (up until now), then incorporating other's code isn't a viable option.

I'd've been happy with static water, shadows and trees, personally, if that could've meant some time spent on the interface. This game's not all about the eyecandy, after all (which is one of the reasons I love it).

Sure, there's always choices. And yes, we could have done quite a bit of UI work if we didn't have dynamic water. But everybody has their own priorities and, as much as we ourselves didn't like it, having respectable animated water was mandatory. We would have been fine with static water too, personally speaking.

I'm not going to hold my breath. Cos I can only manage a bit over a minute, and even you guys aren't that good :) 'Bate it a bit, perhaps. It's a good game, a classic, wanting only a more pleasant user interface to transform it into a great one. In, obviously, my opinion.

And it isn't an opinion I fundamentally disagree with. Sure, about details we might disagree, but I also know we could do better. Especially because I've had the redesign UI sitting here ready to be implemented for 2 years now. But there's nothing I would have done differently with CM:BN's development. There was just too many other things to do so it just has to wait a bit more.

Steve

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I don't smoke, I don't do drugs, I don't drink to excess, I don't womanize, I don't have an addictive personality.

I should hope not you have no time for that! We'll do all the smoking, drugging, drinkin' and womaning while we wait, now get back in the cave and CODE !

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Sure, it's a voluntarily invoked modal environment. I don't see any conceptual problem there.

Modal is bad...

Especially because I've had the redesign UI sitting here ready to be implemented for 2 years now.

Pics or it didn't happen?!

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Combat Mission has used Right Click to de-select units for 11 years. Many people here have put in thousands of hours into Combat Mission. If they haven't developed a habit of using Right Click to deselect by now I'll eat my hat :D

Actually its funny you mention the previous CM games.

CMBO allows you to click directly on another unit WITHOUT deselecting.

It also allows the drag box select to exclude previously selected units.

It also has an awesome contextual menu that comes up right under the mouse cursor for every order.

In the setup phase it has a rotate order that "sticks" to the previous waypoint.

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I really can't get to grips with why casual gamers have difficulty with the game....I've played a fair few mainstream RTS titles that for me where alot harder and more confusing than CMBN...which is why I hate RTS mainstream games...

I've never seen so many complaints on a forum that strike as nit picking to be honest...some things people are moaning about I've never even noticed...infact my jaw drops when reading this forum at times...

It's muscle memory. After using a "screwed up" UI for a while you don't notice anymore. More interesting is that some people build muscle memory much faster than other people. If you are fast you never know what the heck people are complaining about. The camera controls in CMBN are all screwed up in one way or another (see my link to the GS thread) but with enough talent you can master it quickly, or if you play a substantial amount of time because you already know you want *this* game.

But, and that's why I think camera control should be visited before information provided, this kind of thing has a devastating effect on sales to users not used to CMSF or CMBN.

I think it is more important to prevent people from throwing out the demo after 42 seconds of total play. Our loyal people can wait a little longer for some C2 visualization or other. A lot of people here just don't seem to play games with less screwed up camera controls and hence don't notice, namely Steve (sorry :D)). Most mainstream games have camera controls that flow a lot better and -more importantly- more or less the same across vendors. CMBN needs to be right in there.

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Modal is bad...

Sometimes modal is a necessary tool. The more it comes up, the more cautious you have to be when using it. The Support UI is the only thing that pops up which requires the player to "do it or close it", and for good reason. There's other problems I'd like to solve with the Support UI, and modality isn't even on that list.

And to be a little more exact, the system isn't fully modal. You can still move around in the 3D space, you can change Spotters to some extent, and probably some other minor things which aren't all that important.

Actually its funny you mention the previous CM games.

CMBO allows you to click directly on another unit WITHOUT deselecting.

And you can in CMx2 as well. If I click on Unit A I can directly click on Unit B, friend or foe. No need to deselect. The only time you can't is when you are in the middle of plotting a Command. Does CMx1 allow you to do switch units when you're in the middle of plotting an Order? I can't remember, but I don' think so.

It also allows the drag box select to exclude previously selected units.

You mean shift-drag DE-select? Yeah, that would be good to get into CMx2. Individually shift-click to exclude units from a group is a pain if it's more than a couple.

It also has an awesome contextual menu that comes up right under the mouse cursor for every order.

CMx2 has that as well. Hit the spacebar and voila, it's there right under your mouse cursor. And like CMx1, it only shows Commands that are valid for that particular unit.

In the setup phase it has a rotate order that "sticks" to the previous waypoint.

Not quite. You couldn't "stack" Orders on intermediary Waypoints in CMx1 like you can in CMx2 so it just stuck to your last Waypoint. In CMx2, because of the stacking on Waypoints, it matters when you use the Face Command. If it's the last thing you do, then it's just like CMx1 in that it "sticks" to the last Waypoint you put down (or the unit position itself)

So of your list there's only one thing that's "missing" from CMx2, the rest are present.

It's muscle memory. After using a "screwed up" UI for a while you don't notice anymore. More interesting is that some people build muscle memory much faster than other people. If you are fast you never know what the heck people are complaining about. The camera controls in CMBN are all screwed up in one way or another (see my link to the GS thread) but with enough talent you can master it quickly, or if you play a substantial amount of time because you already know you want *this* game.

True, and as I've said there's definitely room for improvement with the UI.

But, and that's why I think camera control should be visited before information provided, this kind of thing has a devastating effect on sales to users not used to CMSF or CMBN.

Careful... if the sales we're seeing now are "devastated" you don't want us to make the game substantially better because "awesome" sales would probably cause me to retire next month. :P You guys should want us to be moderately successful, because if we're beyond that... do you really think I want nothing more than arguing with people over Target Lines and Right-Clicks with people for the next 20 years? ;)

As for the GS forum, I've found it very easy to keep my pledge never to so much as load up that domain ever again. If you want me to read something, it's gotta be done on this Forum. I don't want to go over there and have to wade through startling new theories about how all this CM:BN is just a sham and we're still "running on fumes", "at death's door", "would never release a Western Front game", etc. Sorry, not the best collective track record over there in terms of reading tealeaves.

I think it is more important to prevent people from throwing out the demo after 42 seconds of total play. Our loyal people can wait a little longer for some C2 visualization or other. A lot of people here just don't seem to play games with less screwed up camera controls and hence don't notice, namely Steve (sorry :D)). Most mainstream games have camera controls that flow a lot better and -more importantly- more or less the same across vendors. CMBN needs to be right in there.

I won't argue that we need to do better with the UI. As I said, I've got a design ready to go, but it required more development time than we had a chance to do with CM:BN. The changes are comprehensive and have an internal domino effect. Very few are capable of being implemented individually. About the only one I did get in was numbers for ammo instead of bars. Some changes to icons and a few other things were possible here and there too, but not nearly as much as I would have liked.

I will argue that the perception of it's deficiencies are overblown because, well, the people prone to posting here tend to get easily worked up about minor things. Look at the massive outflowing of positive feedback. Either we have an abnormally large portion of "muscle" types in our midst, or the problems in CM:BN's interface are overstated. Granted, we're not hearing from the people that absolutely hated the demo, but I'm fairly confident that few who are up to the challenge of the gameplay (i.e. theoretically likely to purchase) tossed the Demo off their harddrive after a cursory attempt at playing. Some? Yes. Tons? No, I don't think that's probable. Not because the UI, but because the game is obviously deep and few gamers out there have the patience for deep.

Steve

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And you can in CMx2 as well. If I click on Unit A I can directly click on Unit B, friend or foe. No need to deselect. The only time you can't is when you are in the middle of plotting a Command. Does CMx1 allow you to do switch units when you're in the middle of plotting an Order? I can't remember, but I don' think so.

Yes you're right, what I was thinking of is that CMBO has a left click that plots only ONE order and takes you out of orders mode. Right click chains them. This is actually not such a great way of doing things anyway.

You mean shift-drag DE-select? Yeah, that would be good to get into CMx2. Individually shift-click to exclude units from a group is a pain if it's more than a couple.

No I meant what I was talking about earlier in the thread where the drag box grabs a new selection instead of adding to the old one. Becasue CMx1 does it this way I always thought this was a bug in CMx2 related to the use of the SHIFT key.

CMx2 has that as well. Hit the spacebar and voila, it's there right under your mouse cursor. And like CMx1, it only shows Commands that are valid for that particular unit.

Yes, it might be worth reminding people of that actually because it really harks back to the old UI. I am talking about mouse only play but ths spacebar is pretty handy.

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Yes you're right, what I was thinking of is that CMBO has a left click that plots only ONE order and takes you out of orders mode. Right click chains them. This is actually not such a great way of doing things anyway.

Well, we're not often given credit for improving things, so your lapse is excused only because at this point I've given up expecting to be treated fairly :D

And you're right, the old CMx1 method wasn't great. Talk about a convention that no other game had! In fact, maybe that's why I now hate the idea of using the right mouse button for putting down Commands? :D

No I meant what I was talking about earlier in the thread where the drag box grabs a new selection instead of adding to the old one. Becasue CMx1 does it this way I always thought this was a bug in CMx2 related to the use of the SHIFT key.

I'm really confused here. I am in the game now. I've got a dozen friendly units in view. I shift-drag over a portion on the left. I want to add the guys on the right so I shift-drag them as well. This leaves the guys in the middle excluded. If I shift-left-click on one of the units in the middle it's added to the group. If I shift-left-click on that unit again it's removed from the group. If I want to get rid of the group completely I left-click or right-click anywhere but a unit and the selections go away.

What's deficient about this behavior? The only thing I see that's missing is the ability to shift-drag to unselect units you've already selected. Never heard this mentioned as a problem before, but I suppose some would find it useful.

Yes, it might be worth reminding people of that actually because it really harks back to the old UI. I am talking about mouse only play but ths spacebar is pretty handy.

Apparently you needed reminding too :D

Not to pick on you, but part of the problem we have in discussions like this, in particular about supposed deficiencies in CMx2 vs. CMx1, is that often the information presented is wrong or, at least, misguided (i.e. because other things aren't taken into consideration). This comes from, I think, a sort of natural adversarial stance gamers take with game developers when it comes to UI. It's tough to have a steady, rational, un-emotional discussion about it. When it does happen, though, it's usually a discussion worth having.

Steve

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I won't argue that we need to do better with the UI. As I said, I've got a design ready to go, but it required more development time than we had a chance to do with CM:BN.

So as time is available for these changes to be developed, will the final result be patched into CB:BN? I assume the engine is good to go for a few years yet, especially with talk of further modules based on it. If UI design changes are present in upcoming modules, I assume they will be patched into CM:BN?

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Not to pick on you, but part of the problem we have in discussions like this, in particular about supposed deficiencies in CMx2 vs. CMx1, is that often the information presented is wrong or, at least, misguided (i.e. because other things aren't taken into consideration). This comes from, I think, a sort of natural adversarial stance gamers take with game developers when it comes to UI. It's tough to have a steady, rational, un-emotional discussion about it. When it does happen, though, it's usually a discussion worth having.

Steve

This thread is about managing expectations, resistance to change and comfort zones more than anything else. Some people on this board are just a lot more uncomfortable when confronted with something new or different that requires them to adjust their thinking and/or behaviors. Our society has gotten so used to being catered-to these days; some folks have morphed it into a right they can apply to any situation that confronts them, rather than considering changing themselves.

There are some legitimate gripes herein, no doubt. But Steve has IMO covered them more than sufficiently. People need to adjust their expectations in line with what Battlefront is capable of producing and give them the time to make those things happen.

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Either we have an abnormally large portion of "muscle" types in our midst, or the problems in CM:BN's interface are overstated.

... or we have an abnormally large portion of yessayers or ppl theirs self-confidence needs to stay beta-testers. Or a combination of that. :D

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... or we have an abnormally large portion of yessayers or ppl theirs self-confidence needs to stay beta-testers. Or a combination of that. :D

Ahhh....so, basically anyone that disagrees with you, that doesn't mind the interface, doesn't have a problem playing the game and dealing with the changes...is basically a BFC Fanboy?

LOL...if we had some target lines your assumption might make me tense.

Mord.

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... or we have an abnormally large portion of yessayers or ppl theirs self-confidence needs to stay beta-testers. Or a combination of that. :D

I had to laugh at this one....hard. Peer review looks like a basking shark feeding frenzy behind that wall.

Rest assured there are very few things out here that weren't beaten into horse burgers over there.

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I had to laugh at this one....hard. Peer review looks like a basking shark feeding frenzy behind that wall.

Rest assured there are very few things out here that weren't beaten into horse burgers over there.

:eek: Wow. What was that? Is my English that good, that you think you can talk to me in that language (whatever it may be)? I'm sitting here with my dictionary, google fails, too, and i have understood absolutely nothing.

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:eek: Wow. What was that? Is my English that good, that you think you can talk to me in that language (whatever it may be)? I'm sitting here with my dictionary, google fails, too, and i have understood absolutely nothing.

Now there is a sig line if there ever was one.

Seriously, re-read as: We in the BFC Beta Community pride ourselves on a rigourous process when it come to identifying and suggesting changes to CM game features. This process not only undergoes thorough review by BFC corporate offices but is peer reviewed in a fank and open manner that ensures the communicative shortcomings of the medium of the internet do not interfere or introduce errors.

I hope I can assure you, the faithful customer, that many of the in-game feature discussions have also been reviewed exhaustively internally to the Beta-tester group.

Thank you for your continued interest in making Combat Mission a superior wargaming product.

Love CM Beta Crew.

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Peer review is a fun thing to watch, isn't it? :D From my position I am sometimes, actually frequently, surprised at the direction a discussion takes. Especially with a new release. There's a ton of things I expected players, especially CMx1 players, to complain about. And many of them have never been mentioned even once. There's a ton of things I never would have expected to see even one complaint about, but a dozen people have chimed in that it's an issue for them. And of course there's the stuff I never thought anybody would complain about and one person does, but practically nobody else agrees with him and yet he won't let go of it. As the old saying goes... "there's one in every crowd".

Steve

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