Resupply trucks

penelopecruz.jpgOMFG – You can’t believe how difficult it’s been not mentioning resupply trucks this last week!

Without resupply, I think the mortars would have sucked – they’re going to be imprecise, which means you should expect to fire a bunch of rounds to hit even a stationery target. But with resupply, I can see a few more people loading inf up on to trucks. Two mortars and an LMG riding a truck are going to make a nice little offensive or defensive group. Those guys who pull ATGs and AAAs out with their second account are going to have a field day.

Gophur tried to slip it into this Friday’s production notes quietly:

Resupply Point

Trucks and pullers can now act as resupply points for infantry and vehicles in the game. When you are in range of a resupply point you will begin to be resupplied as long as you are not moving or firing your weapon. Vehicles will get one round and or magazine for each of their weapons per resupply action. Infantry will get resupplied in a similar fashion.

Resupply points can also be established by despawning a vehicle and having it be left in the world as an MSP.

We also touched on some discussion of UI feedback on things – I was talking about how it annoys me that Mobile Spawns get chat-spam feedback (“You are now in range, blah blah”).

Well Ramp, of neccessity, had to clean up the ammo displays in the HUD. And for resupply he put a new icon into the HUD over the healthbar/etc, which shows you when you are in range of a resupply vehicle (its currently the mobile spawn icon from the mission lists), it blinks to show you when you are being resupplied.

While we were discussing that, I asked him if it might be possible to put some other icons on there and instead of icons, use buttons – or something that is clearly something the mouse can interact with, specifically “deploy weapon” (lmg, mortar), “fit grenade cup”, “reload weapon”, “resupply”, “deploy mobile spawn”.

Now clicking on these buttons isn’t the best way to manipulate them – but that’s not the point. If they look like buttons, you’ll know you can mouse-over them. Doing so should tell you what the hot key is to perform the action.

But most importantly – it would tell you that the action is there to be performed – and a lot of people find it very hard to work out how to use the advanced weapons like the ATR and the RifleGrenade. Stuff like deploying a truck – I mean who the hell would think of that?

Ramp’s counter was that if they don’t know how to do stuff like that, they probably won’t know how to use the mouse while spawned (you have to press alt).

I don’t think its an even trade. I think you should tell people how to get to the mouse the first time they spawn – a little one-time dialog that says “Press the ALT key to use the mouse, or M to bring up the Map interface”. There – you’ve solved a whole bunch of newbie issues, and now you can safely put clickable things on screen in the knowledge that newbies know how to access the mouse.

Stuff that has so far been obfuscated can now be introduced via icons. Obviously, you don’t go overboard — several of the functions I described above correspond to a single icon position.

Ramp’s actually built a nice little “guided tour” system for giving you introductory help to each UI screen — it means a lot of localized content generation tho, and I don’t know where he got to with it.

20 Comments

Yeah, when you said “along with other things” in the mortars post, I knew you really wanted to type something else. I was shocked, too, when Gophur mentioned it.

I thought Gophur mentioned it at the Con or it was mentioned in some video post. I was not surprised at the information – so I got it somewhere…pretty sure it was the Con.

Since “The Case of the Missing Firewire cord” has continued, BLOO may have unintentionally kept the cat in the bag.

Yeah, I heard the supply truck before, too. I think it was in an earlier video. I wasn’t at the con so it was mentioned elsewhere, too.

I’m all for putting icons and crap on the GUI, as long as I can make them disappear. I like my screen real estate clean and, as you might have noticed, I’m not a big fan of mouse clicking either… ;-)

I know we’ve mentioned them before, duh, but we hadn’t mentioned them as a 1.27 feature before. We didn’t know they were going to be a 1.27 feature until a week or two ago.

Lutorm – have you tried reading? Your comment makes negative sense in light of my post. How whacky is that?

You’ve seen the mobile spawn icon, its tiny, and that’s the placeholder for the icon he is tucking away in the healthbar hud – not a new icon floating somewhere.

And I explicitly said that clicking the buttons isn’t the point – so why would anyone care whether or not you like clicking buttons?

Another counter to Ramp’s objection is that by learning one thing (alt for mouse), the newbie can then self-learn all the rest via tooltips.

Without that, you have to learn everything by studying the keymapper. It’s a clear advantage to the button tooltip. Eventually newbies won’t use them anymore but you’ve got to try to provide ladders for that learning curve. :)

That’s funny because I’ve had the distinct impression that they were part of 1.27 ever since Gophur mentioned it in his 5/4 video newsletter. He didn’t explicitly say it was part of 1.27 but he was talking about it in the context of 1.27 development and mortars, so it came across, to me at least, as it being a 1.27 feature.

Apparently my tongue-in-cheek was lost on you, I wasn’t arguing against anything you said. I was merely stating my opinion (which I, btw, have no illusions about whether anyone cares about at any time) about not wanting to click buttons as a reference to a recent hangar comment to your post about approval of contacts, where I state that I hate the mouse clicking contact approval GUI. Maybe you haven’t seen it, or didn’t care.

@LUTORM

KFS has remarked out his {Social(friendly)} sub-program routines so that he may live more deeply in the Matrix. :)

I read your post and applied appropriate amounts of cheeky tongue.

Enjoy and don’t take it personal. :)

Am I missing something, or is this part of my post only visible to me?

kfs1 rote[sic]:
Now clicking on these buttons isn’t the best way to manipulate them – but that’s not the point. If they look like buttons, you’ll know you can mouse-over them. Doing so should tell you what the hot key is to perform the action.

But most importantly – it would tell you that the action is there to be performed – and a lot of people find it very hard to work out how to use the advanced weapons like the ATR and the RifleGrenade. Stuff like deploying a truck – I mean who the hell would think of that?

Ramp’s counter was that if they don’t know how to do stuff like that, they probably won’t know how to use the mouse while spawned (you have to press alt).

I don’t think its an even trade. I think you should tell people how to get to the mouse the first time they spawn – a little one-time dialog that says “Press the ALT key to use the mouse, or M to bring up the Map interface”. There – you’ve solved a whole bunch of newbie issues, and now you can safely put clickable things on screen in the knowledge that newbies know how to access the mouse.

Ah, well my bad then Lutorm… If I say I’m having trouble seeing the forest for the trees right now, I hope you can extrapolate the insult aimed at a larger audience that it wouldn’t be political for me to express directly.

Lol, no worries. I (sometimes) think I might not be appreciative enough of the fact that practically noone gives a crap about the software I write. At least that means I can write it the way I want, without having *****s second-guess me on how it should function… ;-)

speaking of the GUI. Think you could convince ramp to add one more custom hud? I’d really like to have one for when I’m flying and one for when I’m on the ground. The default doesn’t cut it for either one for me. (When I fly I only use the chat bar and the two top panels. When on the ground I like to have all the panels up.)

Oh and locking the hud panels would be really nice too. I hate it when I press alt after beeing tabed out and it grabs the chat bar and moves it around so I have to align it myself again.

just some small stuff that would make the virtual life easier.

KFS,

I think I have an idea that would be a good alternative to overstocking that could also create other cool gameplay:

Manned convoys of resupply trucks.

Basically, you can drive a truck from the AB of the DivHQ to the AB of your brigade, deploy as a supply truck in the AB area and as long as its deployed the resupply rate is sped up to that brigade. This would make for great “save this town” moments, which the enemy could see and interdict.

Rules ideas:

-To incentivize actual convoys, the more trucks you get into the AB at once the faster you can make the resupply.

-to allow multiple resupply trucks at once they all must arrive within X amount of time from the arrival of the first. (this would make players more likely to not drive one truck at a time)

-have a limit of how many trucks can do this

-resupply trucks, like UMS’s, can be killed with a rifle

This would be GREAT for bringing in more supply after winning a battle. I think that the other side would come to expect it as well and that would make for some sweet ground targets for air.

Thoughts?

KFS,

Hey man, dont ever loose that ability you have to see the game through the eyes of a newb!

I wish you guys could afford to do a full gameplay audit from a newb perspective, and then have the resources to actually implement the best recomendations.

Trout

We are tha newbs trout! ;)

The confusion new players have with our infantry commands is because of our deviation from FPS standards. I’d rather see us going towards those standards than putting more icons on the screen. Example: the rifle grenade should be a weapon # like every other weapon change we do not some special deploy command the players have to figure out.

We’ve started to go in that direction by putting the deploy command for LMG’s and ATR’s on the “aim” key, but we’ve still got a ways to go. Our way isn’t bad but it’s not really better. If it’s not an improvement then following the standard is the better way to go.

The vehicles though are certainly more complex and I think your idea certainly has some merit there. I’d imagine there are players who’ve been in our game for years and still don’t know the steps to get a StuG ready to fire. Having some state icons/buttons on the HUD would certainly help there.

Granik, you are soooo right.

It’s since begin of may that I have in mind we’re gettingressuply trucks in 1.27.
According to the initial description of how mortars would work, there was no choice, we needed those.

Or were you not speaking about this ?

For the icons on the UI, it would be a nice improvement for newbies, I agree. Even if t players are expected to study the keymapper first.

granik has a good point, pressing B to put your cup on the RG isn’t really that userfriendly.

1. Rifle
2. Rifle Grenade
3. Smoke
4. Knife
B. Binos
N. Night Vision Goggles (lol, rly?)

For me that is the functionality that would make sense coming from any other FPS.

I like the idea of the bipods folding out when you aim/prone, DOD:Source require binding with the right mouse click if I remember rightly.

“I’d imagine there are players who’ve been in our game for years and still don’t know the steps to get a StuG ready to fire.”

That’s very true. I had a go on a Stug during the intermission and I’d no idea how to get the gun ready to fire, yet I’ve been playing WWII/BE for over four years now.

I have to disagree on the riflegrenade concept. Its a modification of a weapon which does not fit the swap weapons paradigm. It doesn’t need to be its own complex something else, it just needs to match the existing modify weapon paradigm that FPS players are used to — the ‘deploy’. You are ‘deploy’ing your cupola.

I listed individual buttons (“deploy weapon” (lmg, mortar), “fit grenade cup”, “reload weapon”, “resupply”, “deploy mobile spawn”).

Several of these overlap so they could re-use the same slot.

Consider the 2-position AT-Gun. The deploy icon would be present to let you know you have to deploy, to explain (by mouse-over) how to deploy or to explain (by mouse over) why you can’t deploy (commander is dead). It might even highlight to some that you might as well make it so that pressing ‘d’ swaps you to the commanders position…

The old “stug deploy” wouldn’t have been such a PITA if ‘old familiar’ deploy icon was there.

For mobile spawns, the deploy icon could be color coded to indicate things like: (/) overlay = Mobile spawn not remotely possible on this mission (mouse over tells you MSP needs a direct link or something), Orange = not in range, Red = too close to an enemy facility, Green = you can deploy here.

All of which is currently information you can only find out by driving to a spot and hitting “d” :)

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