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Topic: Add UI buttons for changing game speed

Forums » Player Forums » Game Suggestions » Add UI buttons for changing game speed



MostlyHarmless
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Joined: 2017-07-07, 21:47
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Posted at: 2017-07-09, 13:48

I would like to play Widelands on my Microsoft Surface Pro 3 and only use the pen on the touch screen. Everything else seemed to work very well with the pen (left click, right click and scrolling with the right click), but I was not able to change the game speed. Even the on-screen keyboard is missing the Page Up and Page Down keys.

If there were UI buttons for changing the game speed, I could play the game without a keyboard.

Unless you want to get very creative, the icons could be the familiar ones from a VCR: << >>
You could add pause button as well if you like. Then it would need three buttons: << || >>
But since pausing can be done just by pressing the speed down to x0, maybe a separate pause button is not needed.

Ofcourse the most awesome thing would be to fully support the touch controls for scrolling and zooming, but even then the game speed needs to be changed somehow and, I think, clear UI buttons is the best way to do it.

PS. Please let me know, if there are other crucial hotkeys I shoud be using, which are not available on the UI. I haven't played the game much yet and might be missing something.


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kaputtnik
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Joined: 2013-02-18, 20:48
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Posted at: 2017-07-09, 16:23

Hi MostlyHarmless and welcome to our forums face-smile.png

All hotkeys are explained if you open the Tribal Encyclopedia (Question mark on the bottom menu) and click on "Controls". How do hotkey combinations, e.g. CTRL + Click on a flag, work on the surface? Or Saving positions with CTRL+Number?

The Problem i see with the game speed buttons: Where to place them. Any suggestions?


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MostlyHarmless
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Posted at: 2017-07-10, 20:59

Thanks kaputtnik, and thanks for sorting out the registeration issue.
The game speed buttons could be positioned on the bottom border of the screen with the other existing buttons. Either on the far right or far left separated with a separator. These are important buttons and maybe even more so than the reset zoom button which I saw in the last dev version.

It seems that I have been playing like a peasant without using saved positions or ctrl-clicking flags.

Here are my suggestions to solve these:
1) Saving positions:
- Moar buttons! Have ten buttons on the top, left or right border of the screen where left click saves a position and icon chages color. Next left click on the same button would take you to that saved position. Right click would clear the saved position, icon color changes back again. The icon could be a pin or something, which changes color from something dull or gray to something a bit brighter like red, green or blue.
- A work around would be to use the minimap to jump around. Then you just need to remember the positions yourself and have the minimap window open taking valuable screen estate.

2) CTRL + click to build roads with flags:
- Again. Moar buttons! This time to the menu which opens when you click a flag to start building a road.
- Right-clicking a flag does not seem to do anything when building a road. Maybe that's a good solution?
- Ofcourse a work around is to build the flags one-by-one, but I'm sure that would get boring quite quickly.

So the two issues you brought up do have some kind of work arounds, but for controlling game speed there is nothing else than using the keyboard. I would be extremely happy, if all these features would be usable with the pen on the Surface Pro. Maybe as I suggested or maybe someone else has even better ideas.

Edited: 2017-07-10, 21:39
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kaputtnik
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Posted at: 2017-07-10, 21:49

I think your solutions are maybe better for a special version of widelands. Maybe one which fits also for cellphones?

Another idea: We currently do not have any doubleclick actions. Maybe this is way to solve some of the problems with hotkey combinations? E.g. when roadbuilding mode is activated, double clicking on a flag places the road and automatically adds flags.


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MostlyHarmless
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Posted at: 2017-07-10, 22:43

Yes, double-clicking sounds good and can be done with a Surface pen.
I think the game speed buttons are relevant for the desktop version of Widelands as well. Changing the speed is quite prominent feature of the game so, why is it hidden behind a hotkey? Also we already have buttons in the UI which also have a hotkey, like showing the building spots, so what's the harm in adding two more.

Also the devs seem to be adding the reset zoom button, so the door seems to be wide open for adding more buttons to UI. Otherwise reset zoom would be only a hotkey as well.


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Tinker
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Joined: 2014-09-12, 10:53
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Posted at: 2017-07-11, 10:52

My 2 cents on this. I do not use savegame on any dame I play, if I screw up and die accept it and start again.. I would not like to lose ant screen estate to more buttons. I am not sure why there is a reset zoom button, it is superfluous even thogh I am constantly zooming in and out I never use it. As for the game speed, I usually set it at the begining and never touch it again, changing economy settings is much more prominent.

This does seem to be a special user case, as kaputnik says, perhaps there is a case for several UI setups for special needs? The only thing is that someone with the device would need to write the code and debug it.


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GunChleoc
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Posted at: 2017-07-11, 12:04

I am planning a redesign of the bottom toolbar anyway, but I'm still busy fixing the game setup screens, so it might not make it into Build 20.

What I have in mind is to use our new capability of drop-down menus to get rid of the permanent little menu windows that we get at the moment (e.g. for game options and statistics). I also want to move the census and statistics off the flag menu and into the main toolbar - we could have a "View" menu there with census, statistics, building plot and zoom options. This way, we will save space while still having everything accessible.

Game speed will be awkward as a drop-down menu, but we could have a button-accessible window. Those who don't need it can then keep it closed to save screen space.


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MostlyHarmless
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Posted at: 2017-07-13, 16:39

Hi Tinker. Thanks for your feedback and I fully get the idea of a lean and minimal UI, but in my opinion the speed buttons are needed.. Not everyone play the same way you do. I tend to play on slow and then increase the speed for a while, if there's nothing to do. Maybe the game will be a tiny bit more accessible to new users when useful functionalities are visible on the screen and not hidden behind a hotkey. You know kids these days; they don't like to read manuals face-wink.png

No special device is needed for coding or debugging. If the button is clickable with a mouse, I can click it with the Surface Pen.

Thanks GunChleoc! I saw some of your ideas and pictures in another thread and the drop-down (-up?) menus seems to be the golden road here. Could there be an option for using the drop-down menus or spreading all those buttons to the bottom of the screen? Or maybe a right-click on the drop-down menu would keep the menu open until right-clicked again? If left-clicked, the menu will open, left-click on a button would do the desired function (reset zoom, change speed, open the economy settings...) and then close the drop-down menu. That way I can clutter my screen with all the buttons I like and others can keep the menus closed, if they want. Or is this what you meant by "button-accessible window"?

If this doesn't make it into 20, then when would 21 be stable enough to play? It looked like there was 3 years between 18 and 19, so will it take 6 years? face-shock.png face-wink.png


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GunChleoc
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Posted at: 2017-07-14, 10:16

It all depends on how many people are around to code and review stuff in their spare time. I currently have a lot of branches stuck in code review...


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