Controls

Questions, ideas, and general discussion of Outer Colony.
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Gaberaham Lincoln
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Controls

Postby Gaberaham Lincoln » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:18 pm

As I slowly make my way into the world of Outer Colony, I'm having some issues really getting into a groove with each of the commands and buttons. Some thoughts:

-Would it be possible to make the hover text from the buttons show up faster and longer? The game has a fast pace to it when unpaused, so it would be really helpful to see what each command does immediately when hovering over it, and without fading away so that it can be read thoroughly.

-Configurable hotkeys would be amazing. With the game being centered around micromanagement, being able to set hotkeys would make the game easier to operate.

-Combining the last two points, including the current hotkey in the hover text would also be helpful (for example, the inspect tile button displays "Inspect Tile <I>" where <I> is the current hotkey for that button). Including the hotkey config next to the toolbar options, too.

-Would love to see the cursor change shape to match the current command that it's set to (like changing into a magnifying glass while in 'inspect tile' mode or switching to the icon with the arrows in the ring while in 'place item mode'). Sometimes it's easy to lose track of what operation I currently have assigned, even with the corresponding button being pressed down in the UI.

I'm sure some of these ideas have been brought up before, but I hope they're helpful nonetheless!
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Re: Controls

Postby Administrator » Wed Dec 28, 2016 10:25 pm

Yes!! In short, all of these ideas are superb.

Gaberaham Lincoln wrote:Would it be possible to make the hover text from the buttons show up faster and longer? The game has a fast pace to it when unpaused, so it would be really helpful to see what each command does immediately when hovering over it, and without fading away so that it can be read thoroughly.

The hover text has been cited before as something that people find useful, and making it last longer would be a big improvement. You're right, it does go away rather quickly right now. This is a big will-do.

Configurable hotkeys would be amazing. With the game being centered around micromanagement, being able to set hotkeys would make the game easier to operate.

I like this one a lot as well. I hadn't really entertained the idea of a keyboard-centric mode of play, since I never played my favorite RTS games (the Command and Conquer series) using anything other than the mouse. However, OC has way, way, way more controls, so key commands might be a big help for advance players.

-Combining the last two points, including the current hotkey in the hover text would also be helpful (for example, the inspect tile button displays "Inspect Tile <I>" where <I> is the current hotkey for that button). Including the hotkey config next to the toolbar options, too.

-Would love to see the cursor change shape to match the current command that it's set to (like changing into a magnifying glass while in 'inspect tile' mode or switching to the icon with the arrows in the ring while in 'place item mode'). Sometimes it's easy to lose track of what operation I currently have assigned, even with the corresponding button being pressed down in the UI.


I have a feeling that changing the cursor to show the currently selected tool might be a big help here. Right now, we highlight the selected tool in the toolbar on the right, but showing it as the cursor would make things even more clear.

These are all fantastic ideas, and these are exactly the kind of usability improvements that should ease the learning and playing experience. Some of these should be really quick to implement, too, and I'll keep everyone posted on their progress in this thread. I'm visiting my parents in North Carolina today, but I'll be home tomorrow, and I'll get moving on these as soon as I've returned.

Thanks again, Gabe, as these are all rock-solid feature requests!

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