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Why was the interface not developed further?


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This is a matter of personal preference. I find it VERY F'N ANNOYING when I'm trying to move a unit near another unit and the system thinks I want to switch units. Lacking an explicit deselect feature, like CM has, the game switches units and then go back to the previous unit (which might even be off screen) and pick up where I left off. I've had this happen to me enough to know I don't want it for my CM experience.

The right-click to deselect is second nature to me. I don't even think about it. Was the same with CMx1 too. I'd hate for it to be like RTS games, even though in RTS the issue isn't as bad because fidelity isn't as much of an issue.

Again, this comes down to personal preference. In RTS you're trying to select a bunch of guys in one area and you don't really care too much about what you're doing because it doesn't really matter (because it's an RTS). In CM it's important to be more exact. The way we have it now allows you to be more exact and I for one wouldn't want it to change.

Yet again... individual player preference :D Whether it be CM:SF, CM:A, or CM:BN I only do Facing for the last Waypoint and only then if the direction of travel to the Waypoint is different than direction I want to face. Which means I probably put down one Face Command for maybe every 1 in 3 units I move.

Which gets back to Phil's point...

How one uses the UI ultimately determines what their perception of it is. While I absolutely will never make the argument that the current UI is "perfect" (no UI ever is), I think that some people create their own problems. And the more complicated a game's UI is, the more potential there is for players to get frustrated with it. Combat Mission is "cursed" with having far more features and user options than other games, therefore it is saddled with a certain complexity of UI which few games have to deal with.

As someone else put it in this thread, RTS games design the UI and then limit the gameplay so it doesn't break the UI. We design the gameplay and then figure out how to make the UI work for it. It's an imperfect process, but I'd rather err on the side of having a super rich game with a slightly clunky UI than a super slick UI with a game devoid of detail.

Steve

I'm getting the hang of deselecting.

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I could make a list of most annoying interface features of CMBN but many of those have already been covered here.

So the main point, we've been promised UI improvements when BFC gets around to he "other stuff" in future release. Future release means CMx3 engine with release date out there? Do we have a chance to see something in the CM:Ostfront game?

If I had to pick one personal pet hate, It'd be a tight match between missing list representation of units on the battlefield with their C2 relations and much more mundane "cannot move existing waypoint" issue.

I quess I'd pick the latter as it should be more straightforward to fix and you run into it a lot. Much additional badness with the waypoint marker/movement vectors in general. It's easy to miss the marker which deselects the unit.. And the cursor does not change to show you've got it.

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So the main point, we've been promised UI improvements when BFC gets around to he "other stuff" in future release. Future release means CMx3 engine with release date out there? Do we have a chance to see something in the CM:Ostfront game?

IIRC the UI overhaul is planned for the Bulge game.

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Oh yeh, I'm sure they'll LOVE the bulge game UI. Raise your hand if you think people complaining about the 'horrible-horrible' current UI will be happy with anything that shows up. I suspect if CM came with a Matrix-style plug into the base of the skull for direct cranial input they'd be complaining about the type of adaptor used. "Eew, you went with a MIDI interface cable?"

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While I agree that people who are taking the UI complaints to an extreme, I do think even they will like the UI in the next CM game better than in CM:BN. Though they'll probably only upgrade their opinion from "unusable" to "barely useable" :D

The planned improvements will be quite good for most people. Heck, even the people who largely like the UI in the game now will probably like the next version's better. And if we didn't think that we wouldn't bother with doing it :D

Steve

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.... CM came with a Matrix-style plug into the base of the skull for direct cranial input ....

When is the pre-order for this?

In all seriousness, I for one have no problem with the interface at all, maybe I am just too easy going or something but it seems fine to me and I have played 'em all since CMBO.

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While I agree that people who are taking the UI complaints to an extreme, I do think even they will like the UI in the next CM game better than in CM:BN. Though they'll probably only upgrade their opinion from "unusable" to "barely useable" :D

Just because there is criticism doesn't mean it's baseless and without merit. (Something for you to consider as well, MikeyD)

I pointed out issues that came to mind right away which are not camera specific incidentally. Others have issues with camera especially. Somehow it indeed does feel awkward, I guess because where the camera is oriented and/or rotation speed/acceleration relation.

In any case, improvements are coming, good! "Bulge game" = next module?

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Actually, I think the Bulge game is the next Title, not the next Family. The time frame is anyone's guess, but I'd say within two years.

The next title will be the Commonwealth module. The one after that will be the Market-Garden module. Rounding out the BN family will be the catch-all module with all the cool stuff that didn't make it into the other modules.

THEN we come to the Bulge family that will take us through the end of the war.

Interleaved in there somewhere will be CMSF v2.0 with its modules.

Michael

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Speaking of UI fixes, I hope the new patch also addresses the need for displaying additional unit position info as was standard with the CMx1 games, such as identifying if a unit is located in cover, such as "woods", "scattered trees" etc as the tree trunk modeling at present lacks ground texture and color to further define these areas, thus making it unclear whether your units are indeed in cover or not.

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Speaking of UI fixes, I hope the new patch also addresses the need for displaying additional unit position info as was standard with the CMx1 games, such as identifying if a unit is located in cover, such as "woods", "scattered trees" etc as the tree trunk modeling at present lacks ground texture and color to further define these areas, thus making it unclear whether your units are indeed in cover or not.

No it won't.

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Speaking of UI fixes, I hope the new patch also addresses the need for displaying additional unit position info as was standard with the CMx1 games, such as identifying if a unit is located in cover, such as "woods", "scattered trees" etc as the tree trunk modeling at present lacks ground texture and color to further define these areas, thus making it unclear whether your units are indeed in cover or not.

If there's no ground texture, there's no difference between the cover the ground offers and the same lack of texture not under trees. Trees are placed individually, and provide shade and a tree trunk in the way of concealment and cover. If the incoming is from higher up, the canopy might help too, but against level fire it's irrelevant. Being on an action spot that has trees on it doesn't make any difference except for the explicitly modelled and visible pixels of the trees themselves. You don't place 'woods' tiles or 'scattered trees' tiles any more.

I'm trying not to repeat myself verbatim from the other thread, because I see here a bit more detail of what the problem is that you're struggling with.

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Actually, I think the Bulge game is the next Title, not the next Family. The time frame is anyone's guess, but I'd say within two years.

Interesting how BFC now serves games on such small slices. Ostfront game would be something like 4 titles by the same logic, from initial blitzkrieg all the way to götterdämmerung.. Althought I do understand we'll get the titles in reverse order due to late war German stuff already being ready..

In any case, I suppose move-able waypoints we might see in a patch, unit hierarchy list + decent c2 representation will likely only appear in next title. If we're lucky, that is.

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Kingdom = CM

Phylum = CMx2

Order = WWII

Family = Western Front

Genus = Normandy

Species = v1.00

That look good?

Actually, there's one issue: you don't provide a classification level to distinguish the base game and its modules. I think it would make sense to simply add them as subspecies though, which would acknowledge the fact that they can freely interbreed (as in: play a game with content from various modules) while the different versions can't (as in: can't play a H2H game with one player on 1.00 and the other on 1.01), so it makes sense to have them be different species. Hence, I propose:

Kingdom = CM

Phylum = CMx2

Order = WWII

Family = Western Front

Genus = Normandy

Species = v1.00

Subspecies = Base game

That being said, it could also be argued that the subspecies level then wouldn't be needed until there are at least two different ones - in other words, until the first module is released - but since we already know roughly what the first module will contain (and can consider it to already exist as a work in progress, even if only in the planning stage), we might as well add it to the classification now.

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Interesting how BFC now serves games on such small slices. Ostfront game would be something like 4 titles by the same logic, from initial blitzkrieg all the way to götterdämmerung.. Althought I do understand we'll get the titles in reverse order due to late war German stuff already being ready..

Perfectly understandable to me. I guess to model one soldier and his equipment in CMBN takes the same amount of work like creating all the different soldier models in CMBB, which were essentially just reskins of the same model with different helmets. As graphics improve, so does the amount of work and time required to create those graphics.

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If there's no ground texture, there's no difference between the cover the ground offers and the same lack of texture not under trees. Trees are placed individually, and provide shade and a tree trunk in the way of concealment and cover. If the incoming is from higher up, the canopy might help too, but against level fire it's irrelevant. Being on an action spot that has trees on it doesn't make any difference except for the explicitly modelled and visible pixels of the trees themselves. You don't place 'woods' tiles or 'scattered trees' tiles any more.

I'm trying not to repeat myself verbatim from the other thread, because I see here a bit more detail of what the problem is that you're struggling with.

Fantastic, that clears that up. I was indeed viewing the foliage in terms of representative modeling not as being individual distinct features. I have to re-tweak my CMx1 way of thinking. :) Thanks!

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Fantastic, that clears that up. I was indeed viewing the foliage in terms of representative modeling not as being individual distinct features. I have to re-tweak my CMx1 way of thinking. :) Thanks!

Glad to have been able to offer some useful advice. You're welcome.

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