The big 'UI Issues' thread

The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby ThornEel » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:19

Please read before answering :
This thread aims at listing UI issues, and possible solutions. Please avoid discussing any particular solution in length here, instead of in its own thread. This post will be updated with new issues and solutions that are brought up, and if some issues are sorted wrongly.
Also, please avoid discussing about how an issue isn't one too much in length here instead of in it's own topic. The rule of thumb is, if more than one person has problems with it, it's a real issue.
Thanks!


WAB is a very good game. While it (still) have a few problems like minor balance issues, there is still one great flaw that, IMHO, prevents it to be a truly great game, the User Interface.
As a UI designer (and software developer) by trade, I really want to see the UI of this game fixed, as it is right now costing it more players than you probably think. One of the most important things in UI design is: listen to feedback. If one user has a hard time with your UI, she does something wrong. If two users do, you are doing something wrong.
Many people underestimate the importance of an efficient UI, but it is often what makes or breaks a good software. And the wider your public is, the more important it becomes. For a videogame, it is actually capital, as no-one is forced to play it (like they would for a professional software) and can simply stop playing if the game experience is not good enough for them.
So the argument that there are workaround or that people should adapt is simply wrong. If people have to adapt to the UI instead of the opposite, then the UI is not working properly.

The first step with fixing a UI is to list all the issues users have with them. Then solutions can be suggested, preferably several ones. Then a solution has to be picked up and tested. I strongly recommend to test the solution with simpler mock-ups as often as possible, as wasting efforts implementing a bad solution won't help (and is often why so many UIs are never fixed).
This post will primarily list the issues with the current UI, and then suggest possible solutions, which have not been tested or may even be impossible for technical reasons. The point is to list the problems and their importance before trying to fix them. Some solution has to be used, but which one is not actually important as long as it works.

Note : this list assumes that the goal of Eugen Systems is to reduce as much as possible micromanagement. Contrary to, say, a Starcraft 2, one decision must ideally lead to one action to execute it. So any action that can take one click instead of two should. But micromanagement isn't only measured by APM : there is also attention, camera position and Actions Per Second (APS), which can be punctually high even when APM is low.

[EDIT 12] Note : there is a general solution to most of the issues described here. Creating a client-side script engine, allowing for client-side mods. Several games did this with much success, particularly in the Total Annihilation bloodline: Supreme Commander, the SpringRTS-based games like Zero-K (even the upcoming Planetary annihilation despite still being in alpha)... For example, one of the worst UI flaws of Supreme Commander (the mass generators having to be set manually, which made them near-unusable at end-game) was corrected by such a client-side mod.
Such client-side tools (like more generally mod tools) would require a huge work, which is why I don't really expect to see them in WAB. But this, coupled with accessible mod-sharing tools, or even the best mods being used by default, would be one of the most effective solutions. It may even be one of the most work-effective solutions, as an important part of the work is done by the users, and those tools would also help the devs for their own work on the UI. As such, I still have to include it here.


Issues are sorted as such :

Critical (***) : Each one of those issues makes you loose players. Those are the kind of issues over which players can loose an entire match, and some will (and did) quit. They should be given the same priority of gamebreaking bugs (that they are, really) like desyncs or crashes. They are literally preventing some people to play the game. And like desyncs or crashes, that not everyone have them is no excuse to let them continue. You would still fix a crash happening only to NVidia users, wouldn't you?

Major (**) : While people can still play the game despite those, they still consistently degrade the player experience. While people probably won't quit thinking of specifically one of those issues, they can still collectively degrade the player experience so they won't come back, or buy the game. They should be given the same priority as major bugs, like units randomly ignoring orders.

Minor (*) : Those are less important issues, but the game experience would still be better if they were fixed. They should be given the same priority than visual bugs like planes missing pilots.

Optional (-) : Those are not really necessary, but they would be nice to have. Their priority may vary, but it could be similar to giving units historically correct markings.

UI issues :


Critical (***) : Units coming from the wrong spawn point.
One of the biggest complaints on those forums. Often, an unit will come up from another spawn point that the player would think. This may be because an ally just captured a new spawn point, the player instinctively assumed that the next unit would come up from the same one, or because too many units were called from one spawn point.
When one spawn point is locked by the enemy or the route is too close to enemy lines, units will be uselessly destroyed, which may cost a match when it is high-end units like planes, heavy tanks or artillery.
Possible solutions :
- Allow the player to lock a spawn point. Neutral/enemy point would either be lockable (for only the player, obviously) if they are captured right when a new unit is called, or a default state would be defined for newly captured points.
- Make orders visible. Ex : in Supreme Commander, all orders become visible when pressing Shift.
- Better show which spawn point is used, and don't change it if a new one is suddenly captured or if many units are called. Note that making orders visible would actually do that.

Critical (***) : Radar AA has to be switched on/off for each squad separately.
Any good AA umbrella needs many widespread units, and turning all of them off one by one when a SEAD plane is sighted (or on when a non-SEAD plane is) asks for lightning reflexes and a very high APS.
Possible solutions :
- Add a new toggle 'radar on/off', similar to the helicopter Altitude button.
- Rules of engagement for radar weapons, like "always on", "always on unless a SEAD plane is sighted"...
[EDIT 6]
- When a unit sub-group is selected with the Focus Group key (or when a group of units are all the same type), the weapons states (and unit info) are displayed like it would be for a single squad.

Critical (***) : All selected artillery will shoot their full salvo at the same point, even when firing smoke.
Optimal use of artillery asks for far too much actions. Shooting near it to panic it and widen its fire zone, stopping its fire after the first few shots to make it shoot next, giving a separate target to each artillery piece... This would be only Major, or even Minor, if not for smoke : to create an effective smoke screen is far more too action- and attention-consuming, particularly as it has to be done fast to continue with the main assault. The Burratino fire artillery can also suffer from this more than HE artillery.
Possible solutions :
- Allow to draw a line or 'paint' a surface to shell, instead of only a single point.
- When chaining fire orders to several units at once, make them each fire to a different ordered point.
- When a point took enough smoke shells, make the unit fire at the next target instead of firing an entire salvo to each fire order point.

Major (**) : Hidden stats.
No game stat should need extensive sandbox testing or browsing the forums to learn or even discover.
Behaviour of SMGs, number of shots before reload and reload speed, AP scaling for KE rounds, HE damage on armoured units, AoE distance, plane turn rates, helicopter unload times, effects of veterancy, unit resistance to suppression, numerical effects of panic, stealth and optics, size, ECM and precision, stabilizers, special case of AA optics, effect of fire... Every single of those should be visible from the game.
Hidden stats are bad because it makes units not behaving like predicted, and it makes understanding (and memorizing) how each unit exactly behaves far more complicated. As the game is based on having superior tactics instead of remembering that X mortar is actually better despite its stats because of its bigger salvo.
Possible solutions :
- Include every single unit stat in the deck menu/armory (preferably with base availability).
- Make the formulas visible, for example in the tooltips or in a separate window in the deck menu/armoury.
- When hovering/selecting high veterancy units, show how much it adds to the stats (ex: Prec 10: +1)

Major (**) : Unit comparison.
Comparing units is far more complicated that it should be, as there is neither comparing tools or a way to have the stats of two units at the same time. Even worse for transports in the deck menu, as you have to hover one, then hover the other instead of simply select one and hover the other.
Possible solutions :
- When a unit is selected, when hovering another, it shows what is the difference between stats (ex: AP 6: +2). A way to select transports is needed, though.
- Allow to open two units (or more) side by side.

Major (**) : Airplanes need to be babysitted.
Using airplanes effectively asks for lots of micromanagement, effectively preventing to command the rest of your army or even observing what happens at the same time, or they will tend to act like moths with AA fire.
Possible solutions :
- Make aircrafts less dumb, so they will avoid AA-heavy zones.
- Show orders, so aircraft trajectory is visible and can be planned more in advance.
- Add more advanced orders for planes (CAP zones, bombing from a certain angle), may go with less dumb aircraft and rules of engagement for units.

Major (**) : Unknown airplane turn rates, and airplanes turning in the wrong direction.
Different planes have different turn rates, but those are never shown. Not only people have to learn (see above, hidden stats), but it is also not immediately obvious what trajectory a plane will follow when given an order. This is a problem, in particular, when ordered to go to a point beyond its max turning rate, as it will turn the other side (which is a problem when the goal was to avoid AA zones).
Possible solutions :
- Show the turn rate of selected planes with two curved lines around it.
- Show orders, so aircraft trajectory is visible.

Major (**) : Unit weapon states have to be micromanaged.
This causes many problems. Recon weapons has to be switched off (adding many clicks when deploying an effective recon), but also switched on when under fire. Weapons have to be switched off for an ambush, then switched on once the enemy tank has passed and is exposing its vulnerable flank or rear. Idem for low-precision weapons, if you want to close in before firing.
All this is taking far more micromanagement and attention it should.
Possible solutions :
- Make units smarter. Player input is needed before, though, to tell them how they should be smart.
- For that, unit stances/rules of engagement : 'offensive', 'stealth', 'ambush'...
- Some way to define in advance the default weapon state for a unit. For example recon weapons switched off.
[EDIT 2]
- A general "weapons on/off" command for all the selected units.
- A "weapons X on/off" command for all the selected units, X being radar, ATGM, autocannon...
- When a unit sub-group is selected with the Focus Group key (or when a group of units are all the same type), the weapons states (and unit info) are displayed like it would be for a single squad.

Major (**) : No way to make all units move at the same speed.
When moving a large group of units, faster units will arrive before. If there is enemy units on the road, those fastest, lightest units will make contact while the heavy-hitters/damage soakers are behind, and will be destroyed. Many an AA was lost this way, letting the group open to air strikes. Avoiding that necessitate that either you are sure that there is no enemy unit on the road (not always possible) or lots of micromanagement.
This is particularly a problem as people expect such a feature, which exists for many years in RTS.
Possible solutions :
- Make groups of units move at the same speed by default. Most often it is the wanted behaviour, and when it is not they can be ordered separately thanks to the Focus key.
- Add a formation feature (with tanks in front and AA in the back, for example), making the group move at the same speed.

Major (**) : No visual feedback when giving orders.
Unit paths are invisible, and the player receive no visual confirmation that the unit will actually do what is wanted (see above with planes how this is a problem). It is also impossible to know what orders a unit were given, so the player has to memorize it, which can also lead to mistakes.
Again, such a feature is expected, as it exists in RTS like Supreme Commander for a long time.
Possible solutions :
- Display the orders and path of the selected units when pressing Shift.
- Have a toggle/hotkey to display all orders.
- Display ETA in seconds to each waypoint. (Note that like IRL, this will only be an estimation. "Stuck in the mud" isn't planned...)

Major (**) : Many orders rushed in the first second of the game.
At the moment the game begins, a huge APS spike is asked to the player. An army worth thousands of points has to be ordered as fast as possible, often with several groups for several tasks. In addition to that, Ctrl-groups have to be defined, and each second lost can give the advantage to the opponent. While this would fit well in Starcraft 2, such an APS rush shouldn't be required in WAB.
Possible solutions :
- Allow to give orders and define Ctrl-groups to ghosts (probably impossible engine-wise).
- Add a second phase to deployment, where units are created but won't execute their orders yet. This way, orders can be chained at a less frantic pace, then will be executed when this second deployment phase ends.

Major (**) : No feedback on line of sight.
Landscape elements aren't always clearly visible, or it is not clear how they affect LoS. This can cause issues with recon or ATGM fire, when the enemy happens to be in an unforeseen dead angle. It is also a problem for recon range, as it is hard to judge what they can see or not.
Possible solutions :
- Display line of sight of the selected units (permanently or with a switch/hotkey), for example with colour or desaturation gradients.
- Similarly, display weapon (min and max) ranges (Supreme Commander does that, using varied colours for the varied weapons)

Major (**) : No tactical aid whatsoever.
If a Special Force unit was spotted for half a second near your starting CV and you looked the other way (probably managing your front), you will never know it. A previously identified unit will be forgotten if it runs out of identification range. AA or artillery fire, despite having clearly visible origin, will never be indicated if you wasn't looking right at it when they fired.
The game is about superior tactics, but it will not give you the informations you need and should have, unless you were looking at the right place at the right time. This, combined with all the other micromanagement elements, create another unforgiving attention sink.
Possible solutions :
- Mark events like spotted units, visible fire and such, including how old was the information, what type was it (artillery fire, autocannon, SAM)/which way moved the unit.
- A previously identified unit stays identified until contact is entirely lost.
- Possibly keep the identification if it is obvious that it is the same unit, for example if contact was lost for half a second.

Major (**) : Stacking, cluttered icons.
Icons in big groups will either recover each-other, hiding them, or will cover a big surface, hiding the position of the units. Even at minimal size, icon will also hide terrain when zoomed out. Some will even use this to hide their units between 1pt trucks.
Also, icons are displayed above units, and units themselves tend to be smaller and less visible, hindering a fast read of where units are (worsened as you have to box-select units themselves, not icons).
Possible solutions :
- An option for smaller, Supreme Commander-like icons right on top of the units.
- Possibly a complete overhaul of how icons work, particularly when zoomed out.

[EDIT 1]

Major (**) : Lack of 'load' command.
Loading dismounted infantry back into their transports needs to be done squad by squad. This is time- and attention-consuming when moving a large infantry force, and can get them destroyed when under artillery fire or air bombing, when APC protection/fast relocation is necessary.
Possible solutions :
- A 'load' button for the infantry : the unit will try to go back to its transport, or if too far/destroyed, to the closest non-used transport.

Major (**) : The Change Altitude command.
The "Change Altitude" command doesn't show what state the helicopter will actually end up with, as it shows no difference if the helicopter is high or low. Guessing what will happen when selecting several helicopter is also difficult : will they all inverse their altitude? Will they all adopt the same altitude, and then which one?
Possible solutions :
- Change the "Change Altitude" button to a context-sensitive "High Altitude", "Low Altitude" (and possibly a "Dynamic altitude" state). When several helicopters with different altitudes, the majority should decide which button is displayed. Hitting it twice shouldn't result helicopters doing both full altitude changes, but them trying to get at the last altitude selected as fast as possible. Note : the button should take into account if Shift is pressed and what is the last altitude ordered.

[EDIT 3]

Major (**) : Planes evac on top of enemy AA.
Once planes evacuate, they are no longer controllable and circle randomly before disappearing. This is particularly a problem as some bombers will evac Winchester right after dropping their payload, even if there is AA around and may get themselves shot down.
Possible solutions :
- Smarter planes, which will avoid AA-heavy zones (including zones where AA or AA fire were spotted previously, even if there is no recon at the moment).
- Plane trajectory stays controllable until they disappear.

Major (**) : Unit waste shots with overkill.
Often, several units will shoot the same target, despite the fact that only one shot/a few shot will be near certain to destroy it; for example when they are not in the same squad. Similarly, one unit will use several F&F missiles on the same target the same way. This is even more of a problem for low-ammo ATGM units, where several of them may be wasted on a single 1pt truck sent as a forward screening element.
To use those units optimally, they need to be heavily micromanaged with individual targets and weapon states.
Possible solutions :
- Units don't shoot a target who is already targeted enough for its near-certain destruction (for example, 90+% chances). (Optionally, suppressed units may override this to fire back at units shooting them, simulating their lessened judgement under panic, but this is a gameplay element more than a UI element.)

[EDIT 5]

Major (**) : Numerous unsorted decks.
One of the strong points of the game is the deck creation, and many players create many decks for varied situations and themes. This with the default decks drive up the number of decks.
This is a problem with the lackluster sorting options in the deck menu, and is even worse in the lobby, where all decks are displayed with no sorting option, and an arbitrary default order not alphabetically based.
Possible solutions :
- Add filtering and more sorting options in the deck menu : per bonus, nationality, faction...
- Add sorting options in the lobby (with still the default selection on the last used deck)
- Add an 'unused' marker for decks, where a marked deck won't be displayed in the lobby.

[EDIT 10]

Critical (***) : Unreadable elements for colour-blind people. [EDIT 11: changed category]
Some elements of the game are very hard to read for colour-blind people. For example, red warning text on the green background of the map. Around 10% of the male population is colour-blind and this is preventing them to read vital elements from the UI; this is the reason why so many games take into account colour-blind people for their UI, and why WAB should do so as well.
Possible solutions :
- Change the colour of said elements.
- Add an outline to those elements.
- Create an option to choose between 'normal' and 'colour-blind' settings.

[EDIT 12]

Major (**) : No tools to manage low-HP units, or more generally 'low-status' units.
Retreating low-HP units is often vital to get an edge in a battle, but to do so, one has to check units individually, then order them individually to retreat and repair. This is a big micromanagement source and requires high APS to be properly done. While correcting some related issues would partially help (e.g. "Lack of 'split unit' command"), this is a big problem by itself.
Note that this is, to a lesser extent, a problem with all 'low-status' units, like panicked or depleted (ammo, fuel) units as well.
Possible solutions :
- Add tools to select damaged units. Similarly, add tools to select varied low-status (panicked, depleted...) units.
- Add Rules of Engagement for units, so they retreat when damaged or low-status.
- Make units retreat to nearby supply vehicles when damaged or low-status.
- Create a 'retreat zone' command, either as a general command (like flares) or as a supply vehicle command. Optionally, have this retreat zone have an effect radius determined by the user, determining from where units will retreat to it.
- Add a separate 'rest zone' command similar to the above 'retreat zone', but specifically for panicked units.
Last edited by ThornEel on Tue 30 Jul 2013 18:49, edited 8 times in total.
W:RD pilot, while trying to evac right on top of enemy AA (last words) wrote:As I walk through the valley of death I have no fear for I am 80,000 8,000 ft and climbing...
The big 'UI Issues' thread : Red Dragon edition
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby ThornEel » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:19

Minor (*) : Units have to be micromanaged.
Units tend to be dumb. For example, they won't run for cover even if it's right next to them. When a group is ordered to take position at the edge of a forest, some units will prefer sticking out in the open. When asked to move through a forest, some units will prefer to drive to the open.
Possible solutions :
- Smarter units, that will for example try to move or place themselves to the best positions when given a general group order.

[EDIT 1]

Minor (*) : Non-explained UI functions.
Some things, like the Change Focus key or the tooltips on the unit info page, are not obvious for everyone. Many people also seem to miss the (static) formation tool by click-drag, and that units in formation, when ordered to move, will return in formation once arrived. This is effectively negating those UI functions for them.
Possible solutions :
- Add some UI tips in the tutorials.
- Add videos (or links to videos) explaining this stuff in the game.

Minor (*) : Planes squatting in the Airport Pannel.
There are limited slots in the Airport Panel, but the only way to dismiss a plane and free the slot is to actually destroy it, which can be hard to do without giving points to the enemy in Destruction.
Possible solutions :
- Add a Dismiss button in the Airport panel. A confirmation prompt is needed, preferably right above the airport panel so it doesn't prevent other operations by covering it. If no gameplay change is wanted, the plane would simply disappear (equivalent of scuiciding it), though other options are obviously possible.

Minor (*) : Once out of ammo, artillery closes in when ordered to fire at position.
One would expect that out-of-ammo artillery, when ordered to fire at pos, would sit back and do nothing. But instead, they will close in and fire at position with their secondary weapons, which means going through the enemy lines they were ordered to shell and, if the player doesn't react quick enough, getting itself killed.
Possible solutions :
- When out of ammo, the artillery piece ignore any "fire at pos" order outside of its main weapon minimal range, possibly with a negative feedback like "*Clang* Out of ammo, Sir!".

Minor (*) : Not quite obvious pulsing icons for hidden units.
Pulsing icons aren't instantly seen like a clear change in colour/style would be, and can actually hinder reading them. As decisions may ask for lightning decisions, any hindrance in reading what happens is a problem.
Also, it is strange that detected units simply stop pulsing instead of showing a "detected" state, and not always obvious (is it seen, or is it simply outside of the forest?)
Possible solutions :
- Change the colour/brightness of the icon instead of making it pulse.
- Make the pulse shorter and less ample, so it is easier to read the icon.
- Change the style of the icon, for example thicken the border.
- Make another change for when the unit is detected (for example change of style for one, change of colour for the other).

Minor (*) : At the beginning, the angle of the camera isn't always parallel to the map border.
It will be parallel as soon as zoomed out to strategic view and back in, which will be the angle used most of the time. So tilting it at the beginning doesn't really have a point, and is slightly disorienting. (Hey, I told you, this is minor stuff).
Possible solutions :
- Well, guess...

Minor (*) : Planes evac Winchester with cannon rounds left.
Sometimes, it may be wanted for the plane to stay and fight with its cannon despite having no missile left, for example with the A-10. Right now, to do this, you have to micro the plane and switch off its missile before it fires the last one.
Possible solutions :
- Add a switch state on each weapon for evac Winchester to take it into account.

Minor (*) : Impossible to keep planes into Ctrl-groups.
Planes in the Airport panel can't be in a Ctrl-group, and flying planes will be dropped out of such group once evac'd. When having to call planes in emergency, having to select them instead of using the Ctrl-group is a hindrance.
Possible solutions :
- Allow planes in the Airport panel to be in Ctrl-groups like any other plane.
[EDIT 7]
- Allow planes to keep their Ctrl-grouping when back at the airport.

Optional (-) : Clunky sandbox testing.
Right now, it is possible to test units Sandbox-like, by launching an empty skirmish or 'playing' against a friend for unit fights. However it is quite unwieldy, you often have to bother a friend and sometimes create decks especially for it. A full-fledged sandbox mode would be better suited for those experimentations and learning.
Possible solutions :
- A new option for Solo games, next to Skirmish. In this mode, you have access to all units with no limit for free, and you can order units from both sides. Ideally, you could switch between LoS like with a replay.

[EDIT 3]

Minor (*) : No map overview in the pre-match screen.
There are many maps, and inexperienced players won't know them all, or recognize them simply by their names. As deck choice can depend on the map choice, not knowing which map it will be is a disadvantage.
This is another feature that players expect from any RTS.
Possible solutions :
- Add an overview of the selected map in the pre-match screen - there is space for that in the left part.

[EDIT 4]

Minor (*) : No shortcuts for the flares.
Flares are very useful in team games, and must sometimes be used as fast as possible, for example to warn about an enemy push. The absence of shortcuts makes their use more clunky, and can be a serious problem in those emergency cases.
Possible solutions :
- Add configurable shortcuts for the flares.

Minor (*) : Ambiguous flares.
Apart from the custom ones and their added texts, flares are too ambiguous to be optimally used. 'Attack' or 'Defend' is too broad and contain too little information to be used effectively: attack with tanks? infantry? planes? Defend against what? How many of them? I don't want to send AA to stop MBTs. In big teams, who should attack? The closest player? A big combined force?
Possible solutions :
- Add text to all flares, not only custom ones.
- Add a list of elements to add to a flare. Some games use a tree for those, with its own hotkeys that will override normal hotkeys; this allows for relatively complex messages in very short time.
- Add more flares, and things like arrows, lines, surfaces...
- Allow to draw on the map (compare SpringRTS-based game Zero-K). May be abused, though.
- Add a full tactical command interface.
[EDIT 12]
- Allow to draw on the pre-match overview (requires said overview to exist, obviously).

Minor (*) : Huge flares.
While the big colored smoke cloud is easy to spot when zoomed out, it will hide units and terrain behind it, particularly when zoomed in. It can also cause problems when several flares are close to each-other.
Another problem is that the exact position isn't always instantly obvious, particularly with several close flares. The 3D shape of the flare isn't as simple as in most RTS (where a symbol or a stylized shape is often used, instead of an 'in-game-like' effect), meaning that more attention may have to be given to get where it is on the ground.
Possible solutions :
- Make flares semi-transparent.
- Make flares disappear when the camera is close.
- Change the aspect of flares to something less obscuring ('abstract' draw like zones and icons, smaller flares...) and easier to read.

Minor (*) : Logos when launching the game.
This is a very common and quite annoying problem with games. While it is nice to see the logos of who developed/published the game, and they should be given due credits, most players will skip them after the (few) first time(s). But it will still require player input for that, and will still make them wast some seconds, added to the loading time of the game itself. Even worse, players may associate said logos with the annoyance of wasted time, which isn't good for the logo owners.
While some players tweak config files in games, the first (and sometimes only) tweak to be done by most players to a config file is usually to skip those logos at the beginning.
Possible solutions :
- Add an option to not display those logos at each game launch (default to display, of course)

Optional (-) : No personal notes.
As there is no tactical aid ('X unit was seen there 25 seconds ago'), some people use flares as notes on the map to keep track of the events. Unfortunately, this cannot be used in team plays, where dozens of flares would hinder other players as well as team coordination.
Possible solutions :
- Add map notes, usable like flares but only seen by the player.
- Let players draw on the map, but only seen by the player.

[EDIT 5]

Optional (-) : No tool to help for map-specific decks.
Ideally, decks would be made with a map or a map type in mind. For example, an urban map will ask for a different deck than an open map. But there is nothing to help for this: no way to see a map while building a deck, and it adds to the deck clutter by adding more decks.
Possible solutions :
- Add a map overview in the deckbuilding menu. Either as a minimap or by replacing the Armoury by the map. Ideally with the example unit still obeying once in the map, to test how fast it moves and such things.
- Add an option to mark a deck as map specific. The deck will appear only if (on of) the specified map(s) is selected in the lobby.

[EDIT 6]

Minor (*) : Overlapping icons in the deck building menu.
In the deck menu, infantry logo (recon, SF, rifle, AT...) is at the same place than the stripes indicating its veterancy. While one can see what the infantry type is thanks to the background, it makes reading the unit veterancy very difficult (and frustrating).
Possible solutions :
- Move the veterancy stripes elsewhere.
- Move the unit symbol elsewhere.
- Use two different colours, or dark edges, to make stripes more visible.

Minor (*) : Chat always open by default.
Like most online communities, W:AB chat content isn't always best to be seen by children. This is a problem for players having young children, as they have to cut it at each game launch, to avoid those children to see it on their screen.
Possible solutions :
- Add an option to deactivate the chat by default.

Minor (*) : Helicopters on "low altitude" by default.
This is counter-intuitive : as it stands now, the "low altitude" setting makes helicopters descend only when immobile. So when arriving, they are flying high, and generally continue so as they are immediately given orders. As such, people won't realize, or will forget, that they are on "low altitude", and will be surprised when they are descending (particularly when this makes them break LoS with targets).
Another problem is that when called at the beginning, they begin at low altitude unless above forest, making them waste a few instants with the initial orders.
Possible solutions :
- Give helicopters "high altitude" by default.
- Make helicopters fly low when moving.

[EDIT 7]

Minor (*) : No way to change the zoom and scrool speed.
Different people prefer different scroll speeds when using the hotkey/mouse border scroll, or zooming in/out with the mouse wheel. For example, for some the default scrool speeds are too low, preventing them to change the view as fast as they could, and thus effectively increasing the micromanagement time. For others, it may be too fast as they aren't accustomed to use it yet.
Possible solutions :
- Add sliders in the option menu, to change hotkey scroll speed, mouse border scroll speed and zoom speed.
- Add an option to have a smooth zoom out, instead of switching to the map view and bypassing the intermediate zoom levels.

Minor (*) : No way to deactivate the "cover magnet" placement for units.
When moving units, they will often try to get to nearby cover. When giving the move order, the planned unit position will jump to a nearby available cover. This is nice to avoid some obnoxious micro when giving broad orders, but it is a problem when trying to carefully place units, particularly when it is known that said cover will be attacked as an obvious spot.
Possible solutions :
- Add a hotkey that will either switch on/off the "magnet" effect, either deactivate it as long as it is pressed.
- Reduce/deactivate the "magnet" effect when sufficiently zoomed in; a player may zoom in precisely to give more precise order positioning, so the "magnet" effect makes little sense there.

Minor (*) : Having to use unit fire-position to measure distances.
Knowing distances is capital, and currently the only way to do so is to give an fire-position order to an armed unit (with something else than missiles), between the unit position and the desired point. This is very impractical for many, many reasons, and often forces to use imprecise guesstimates that require quite a bit of attention.
While some may argue that the guesstimate is wanted by game design, this makes no sense as it is still possible to measure those distances with the fire-position order in a number of cases. So unless the distance indication was for some reason retired from the order (which should include the weapon range), then a proper solution is needed for this.
This is particularly ridiculous, for example, as it gives armed reco units an UI advantage, even if they are not expected to fight.
Possible solutions :
- Add a "ruler" function, giving the distance between two arbitrary points. For the exact same reasons as before, it should also give LoS indications like the fire-position order gives, unless LoS is indicated by other means.

Minor (*) : No way to manage planes at the airport.
Managing planes in the airport panel is impossible; the Ctrl-group issue with planes above is related. For example, one cannot change the weapon states of a plane which is not flying. This forces this management to be done in a far shorter time, when planes are flying, which is also when more micromanagement is needed - be it because of the plane itself or because of a combined arms action it has been called for.
Possible solutions :
- Allow planes in the airport to be selectable and manageable like any other unit.

Optional (-) : No way to switch the HUD off while in a game (as opposed to replay).
Some people like to admire the game or take a screenshot while playing, for which the ability to switch HUD off. Unfortunately, this is only possible with replays, that not everyone knows the existence, that it is automatically saved or have time to re-watch the replay just for that (particularly as it is easy to overshoot the moment, meaning that all is to be redone).
Possible solutions :
- Add a button/hotkey that will temporarily disable the HUD, any action (key or mouse click) apart from camera ones will reactivate it.

Optional (-) : The map isn't always perfectly readable.
Sometimes, it is hard to read the map at first glance. For example, slopes may not be instantly obvious, and lone trees may be confused with bits of cover. Some way to change the aspect of the map to make it more abstract/readable would be nice. This may by having a fully abstract map with only minimal features, by adding lines and colour zones on the map...
Possible solutions :
- Add a hotkey to switch between normal/enhanced (or abstract) aspect, or that changes the aspect as long as pressed.
- Add an option to have the map displayed as normal or enhanced by default.

[EDIT 8]

Minor (*) : No control over zone display.
Back in WEE, there was an option for whether zones should be displayed when zoomed in. It wasn't perfect, but now that the option isn't available anymore, things are even worse. For some people, zone display when closed in makes map read harder - particularly as WAB maps are less readable than WEE ones. For others, no zone display when completely zoomed in is a problem for placing units (like command vehicles) with precision.
Possible solutions :
- Bring the WEE option back.
- Add a slider to change the zoom level where the zone disappears.
- Add options to change zone display aspect, like transparency and border line thickness. Preferably depending on zoom, as some people may want to have the border line displayed but not the zone colour when completely zoomed in.

[EDIT 9]

Minor (*) : Reset of deck selection when someone join or leave a pre-match game.
As players tend to have many decks (several dozens for some), nothing should interrupt it when choosing one for a match. But when someone join or leave the match, the deck selection box is closed, forcing the player to begin her selection again. This is particularly problematic for bigger games like 10v10.
Possible solutions :
- Keep the selection box open when changes happen, like when a player join or leave.

Minor (*) : No clear indication that supply units under fire can't give supplies.
Supply units that have been under fire can't give supplies for some time. Unfortunately, this is not clearly visible on the unit itself, and is actually a hidden mechanic. This leads some to assume that there is a bug with supply units; and even for those who know this, they can't determine if a unit is functional or suppressed, particularly if they can't tell for certain when was the last time it was under fire. Such hidden mechanics and status should be avoided as much as possible.
Possible solutions :
- Display a status like "suppressed: cannot deliver supplies - 19s" on the suppressed supply unit
- Add this mechanic in the tutorial

Minor (*) : Unit selection displaying NATO icons even when RTS icons are used.
In the menu, one can choose between using actual NATO icons, or custom RTS icons created by Eugen. But when units are selected, the unit selection displayed at the bottom of the screen always uses NATO icons. This incoherence is particularly problematic as people using RTS icons are probably unfamiliar with NATO or have a hard time reading them.
Possible solutions :
- Use RTS icons for unit selection when RTS icons are selected.

Optional (-) : No way to make private notes about other players.
As it is trivial to change one's pseudonym, it is difficult to keep track of the players one play with/against. This is problematic both for positive ("strong air player" - "good AA" - "early town-grabber") or negative ("weak armour" - "helo spammer" - "avoid this player").
Note that this refers to private notes, that only the note's creator can read. This has nothing to do with a public note/evaluation of other players.
Possible solutions :
- Create a "private notes" system, that can easily be seen about other players. For example, add a "note" icon and make notes visible as a tooltip on the player.
- Create a "status" system, where one can assign status to other players, adding the corresponding icon when seeing said player.

[EDIT 10]

Minor (*) : No way to deactivate the 'headquarters noise'.
When zooming out to strategic view, a sound representing headquarters background chatter can be heard. Contrary to the music, this sound can't be deactivated. Like any other sound in the game, this one should be changeable, with an option to deactivate it completely for those who want silence (for example, to better hear their team-mates on vocal chat).
Possible solutions :
- Add a 'background noise' slide setting, to change its intensity.
- Set it to be affected by an existing sound setting, like the music one for example.
- Add a 'background noise' on-off setting.

Minor (*) : No way to sort cards in the deployment menu.
The order of unit cards in the in-game deployment menu is decided automatically, without any input from the player (sorted by price for the moment). This is a problem as, as good as the algorithm may be, there will always be edge cases, or players with different tastes and habits.
For example, the current system may put two infantry units with different transports far apart due to the price difference. Some players may also prefer to have their AA before their artillery, or after.
Related, in the deck building menu, the only way to change card order is to delete cards and put them back in the wanted order, which is quite unwieldy.
Possible solutions :
- Make the order in the in-game deployment menu depend on the deck building menu order. Optionally, add an automated "sort by price" button.
- Add several options for sorting, for example 'deck building menu', 'descending price', 'category and price'...
- Add a drag-and-drop to change the order of cards in the deck-building menu.
- Automatically put two cards of the same type next to each-other in the deck-building menu.

Optional (-) : No tool to share decks.
Right now, the best way to share decks is to take a screenshot of it and send the image. It is unwieldy for many reasons: it may be difficult to correctly identify the units, particularly if the image is low-res, the image tend to be very large and has to be edited by hand to have a slightly more reasonable size, you still have to rebuild the deck by hand, it also implies to either alt-tab, print the image (not environment-friendly, though) or have a very good memory...
Despite this, it is common to see people share decks on the forums or between friends, so there is clearly a demand for such a tool.
Possible solutions :
- Have decks saved in a separate file, like replays.
- Have an in-game option to share decks with other players.
- Have a tool to export decks as an image better adapted than the big screenshot image.

[EDIT 11]

Minor (*) : Unreadable player name on units.
In multiplayer games, the name of the player owning the unit is written above the unit name. Unfortunately, it often happens to be unreadable due to the lack of contrast with the background, preventing a needed fast identification of the unit's owner. Note that it can be even worse for colorblind people.
Possible solutions :
- Add an outline around the player name.
- Put the player name in a box, like the unit name.
- Add a symbol (ex: a digit) corresponding to the player.
- Use slightly different colours for each player: player colours instead of team colours.

Minor (*) : Non-configurable key-bindings.
Some key-bindings are un-configurable.
Case in point, having double-click or Ctrl-click used to select all units of the same type can cause problems: some players will, for example, accidentally select all units of the same type instead of only one, right before giving an order.
Possible solutions :
- Add options to configure all key-bindings and commands.

Minor (*) : No active pause in skirmish.
Skirmish against AI is a very common way to learn the game basics and get some training before joining multiplayer games. Unfortunately, WAB can be quite fast-paced and drowning for new players. An active pause, where orders can still be issued while game is paused, can be a great way to alleviate this burden for training's sake. It is also quite commonly used in other RTS, so many players expect it.
Possible solutions :
- Allow players to still give orders with menu open. Opening menu pauses the game only in skirmish, not in multiplayer.
- Create a 'pause' function, working as an active pause. This function can be deactivated in multiplayer games, with an error message like 'You cannot pause multiplayer games'. It can also be set in game creation options : no pause, 1 pause per player, unlimited pauses. If pauses are possible in multiplayer, varied systems exist to prevent one player abusing it: votes to re-launch games, several players needed to pause...
- The origin of this issue is actually the burden of APS and micromanagement on players, particularly newer ones. Solving the issues pointed here would actually considerably alleviate this burden, and as such reduce the importance of this particular issue.

Minor (*) : No way to organize replays.
As games are automatically saved as replays and players download other replays for varied reasons, the replay list can grow quite long, and finding desired replays, or seeing which replay was about what, can become problematic.
Possible solutions :
- Add a folder system to sort replays.
- Add a research system in replays.
- Add optional personal notes on replays.

Optional (-) : No unit nicknames.
Some players, for example having military background, know some units by nicknames, like 'Bootnecks' for the Royal Marines. Thus, it can be strange for those players to see those units used with their official names. Some way to change the name a player will see the units displayed as (with no repercussion on other players) would be welcome.
Possible solutions :
- Add one or more nicknames to units, with an option to use the nickname of this particular unit.
- Add an option to give a particular unit a personalized nickname.
- Add an option to activate/deactivate unit nicknames, for example to record videos.

[EDIT 12]

Minor (*) : Skirmish not keeping previous state as default.
When creating a skirmish, the default settings are always the same. For people wishing to try the same or a close skirmish several times in a row (ex: same map, same rules...), it is a pain to always have to change them back, and sometimes forgets one (ex: forget to change the map).
Note that this may also be useful for those who create multiplayer games often, not just skirmish.
Possible solutions :
- Use the last created skirmish/multiplayer game settings as default settings for skirmishes/multiplayer games.
- Use the last created game settings as default settings, regardless of skirmish or MP games.
- Create an option to use default or last played game as default.
- Add an option to apply last created settings in the game creation menu.

Minor (*) : No 'Are you sure?' dialog box when quitting the game.
When hitting the 'quit' button, the game will instantly quit instead of asking the player for confirmation. This can be frustrating as players tend to double-click the 'back' button to go back to the main menu, which will quit the game from some menus (e.g. the Deck menu), needlessly wasting quit and launch times.
Possible solutions :
- Add a 'Are you sure you want to quit the game?'-like dialog box asking for confirmation when quitting.
- Add an option (on by default) to whether confirmation is asked when quitting.
- Don't show the box when the game is quitted by other means, like Alt-F4 (or make it an option).

Minor (*) : No quick way to see individual HP of units in a squad.
The only way to see the HPs of an unit in a squad is to have this squad only selected, which is quite unwieldy, particularly when much micromanagement and APS is required (e.g. a tank battle where several groups of valuable tanks are to be taken care of, in addition to other unit types).
Possible solutions :
- If the 'square' is used to show how many units are in the squad, change the square in function of the remaining HPs (e.g. HP bars).
- Add some 'HP status' near the icon, both on the map and in the selection bar at the bottom of the screen.

Minor (*) : Lack of 'split unit' command.
When a squad is selected, the only way to separate its units is to use the 'split' command, which separate them into individual units. There is no way to separate one unit from the squad, or to split a four-unit squad into two-unit squads. This could be particularly useful when weeding out damaged units to retreat them.
Possible solutions :
- Add an option to split a unit on the unit selection (for example, near its HP bar), when an individual squad is selected. Possibly, splitting several units while pressing Shift would put them in the same squad.
- Add an option to split all units with low HP (e.g. <51%, but may be configurable).
Last edited by ThornEel on Tue 30 Jul 2013 18:49, edited 13 times in total.
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The big 'UI Issues' thread : Red Dragon edition
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby Corsair » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:21

Definitely agree with all of these.
My thread about the second critical point (more largely about ROEs) : viewtopic.php?f=91&t=32328

However at page 3, it is stated that devs will not look further into such problems. :(
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby REDDQ » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:29

@ThornEel


Respect! Truly a great job!
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby DeuZerre » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:37

Critical (***) : Units coming from the wrong spawn point.

Old since W:EE. I think we won't see this change, to my utmost disgust.

Critical (***) : Radar AA has to be switched on/off for each squad separately.

Possibly on puropose, so that SEAD may actuall have a use.

Critical (***) : All selected artillery will shoot their full salvo at the same point, even when firing smoke.

I would classify this as optional, but I would change it to 'rolling barrage" drag & drop system.

Major (**) : Hidden stats.

Most of these see answers when mouse-hovering over the stat. For the other ones...

Major (**) : Unit comparison.

IMHO, armoury need an overhaul...

Major (**) : Unknown airplane turn rates

I suggested this, it's been relayed.... but no words since.

Major (**) : Stacking, cluttered icons.

Go to options.
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby FLX » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:38

Funny, we use the same colours to report problems internally but the scale is not exactly the same :
critical = the game cannot launch at all :mrgreen:
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby saber2243 » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:41

Spoiler : :
ThornEel wrote:Please read before answering :
Critical (***) : Units coming from the wrong spawn point.Already done You can see which spawn point a unit is coming out of by seeing which reinforce zone is highlighted when you move the ghost
One of the biggest complaints on those forums. Often, an unit will come up from another spawn point that the player would think. This may be because an ally just captured a new spawn point, the player instinctively assumed that the next unit would come up from the same one, or because too many units were called from one spawn point.
When one spawn point is locked by the enemy or the route is too close to enemy lines, units will be uselessly destroyed, which may cost a match when it is high-end units like planes, heavy tanks or artillery.
Possible solutions :
- Allow the player to lock a spawn point. Neutral/enemy point would either be lockable (for only the player, obviously) if they are captured right when a new unit is called, or a default state would be defined for newly captured points.
- Make orders visible. Ex : in Supreme Commander, all orders become visible when pressing Shift.
- Better show which spawn point is used, and don't change it if a new one is suddenly captured or if many units are called. Note that making orders visible would actually do that.

Critical (***) : Radar AA has to be switched on/off for each squad separately.agree but there should be some benefit to good micro as much as the game is about macro the good micro player should always come out on top if the macro is even
Any good AA umbrella needs many widespread units, and turning all of them off one by one when a SEAD plane is sighted (or on when a non-SEAD plane is) asks for lightning reflexes and a very high APS.
Possible solutions :
- Add a new toggle 'radar on/off', similar to the helicopter Altitude button.
- Rules of engagement for radar weapons, like "always on", "always on unless a SEAD plane is sighted"...

Critical (***) : All selected artillery will shoot their full salvo at the same point, even when firing smoke.hotkey your arty and point each piece at a different location not that much micro and plenty of control
Optimal use of artillery asks for far too much actions. Shooting near it to panic it and widen its fire zone, stopping its fire after the first few shots to make it shoot next, giving a separate target to each artillery piece... This would be only Major, or even Minor, if not for smoke : to create an effective smoke screen is far more too action- and attention-consuming, particularly as it has to be done fast to continue with the main assault. The Burratino fire artillery can also suffer from this more than HE artillery.
Possible solutions :
- Allow to draw a line or 'paint' a surface to shell, instead of only a single point.
- When chaining fire orders to several units at once, make them each fire to a different ordered point.
- When a point took enough smoke shells, make the unit fire at the next target instead of firing an entire salvo to each fire order point.

Major (**) : Hidden stats. agree but there needs to be some other way then clogging the armory with more stats to the point which it becomes unreadable. perhaps an documentation page withing the armory that explains all the stats
No game stat should need extensive sandbox testing or browsing the forums to learn or even discover.
Behaviour of SMGs, number of shots before reload and reload speed, AP scaling for KE rounds, HE damage on armoured units, AoE distance, plane turn rates, helicopter unload times, effects of veterancy, unit resistance to suppression, numerical effects of panic, stealth and optics, size, ECM and precision, stabilizers, special case of AA optics, effect of fire... Every single of those should be visible from the game.
Hidden stats are bad because it makes units not behaving like predicted, and it makes understanding (and memorizing) how each unit exactly behaves far more complicated. As the game is based on having superior tactics instead of remembering that X mortar is actually better despite its stats because of its bigger salvo.
Possible solutions :
- Include every single unit stat in the deck menu/armory (preferably with base availability).
- Make the formulas visible, for example in the tooltips or in a separate window in the deck menu/armoury.
- When hovering/selecting high veterancy units, show how much it adds to the stats (ex: Prec 10: +1)

Major (**) : Unit comparison. agree
Comparing units is far more complicated that it should be, as there is neither comparing tools or a way to have the stats of two units at the same time. Even worse for transports in the deck menu, as you have to hover one, then hover the other instead of simply select one and hover the other.
Possible solutions :
- When a unit is selected, when hovering another, it shows what is the difference between stats (ex: AP 6: +2). A way to select transports is needed, though.
- Allow to open two units (or more) side by side.

Major (**) : Airplanes need to be babysitted. the good micro player should always win
Using airplanes effectively asks for lots of micromanagement, effectively preventing to command the rest of your army or even observing what happens at the same time, or they will tend to act like moths with AA fire.
Possible solutions :
- Make aircrafts less dumb, so they will avoid AA-heavy zones.
- Show orders, so aircraft trajectory is visible and can be planned more in advance.
- Add more advanced orders for planes (CAP zones, bombing from a certain angle), may go with less dumb aircraft and rules of engagement for units.

Major (**) : Unknown airplane turn rates, and airplanes turning in the wrong direction.agree but this isn't really that big of an issue
Different planes have different turn rates, but those are never shown. Not only people have to learn (see above, hidden stats), but it is also not immediately obvious what trajectory a plane will follow when given an order. This is a problem, in particular, when ordered to go to a point beyond its max turning rate, as it will turn the other side (which is a problem when the goal was to avoid AA zones).
Possible solutions :
- Show the turn rate of selected planes with two curved lines around it.
- Show orders, so aircraft trajectory is visible.

Major (**) : Unit weapon states have to be micromanaged. agree
This causes many problems. Recon weapons has to be switched off (adding many clicks when deploying an effective recon), but also switched on when under fire. Weapons have to be switched off for an ambush, then switched on once the enemy tank has passed and is exposing its vulnerable flank or rear. Idem for low-precision weapons, if you want to close in before firing.
All this is taking far more micromanagement and attention it should.
Possible solutions :
- Make units smarter. Player input is needed before, though, to tell them how they should be smart.
- For that, unit stances/rules of engagement : 'offensive', 'stealth', 'ambush'...
- Some way to define in advance the default weapon state for a unit. For example recon weapons switched off.

Major (**) : No way to make all units move at the same speed. AGREE
When moving a large group of units, faster units will arrive before. If there is enemy units on the road, those fastest, lightest units will make contact while the heavy-hitters/damage soakers are behind, and will be destroyed. Many an AA was lost this way, letting the group open to air strikes. Avoiding that necessitate that either you are sure that there is no enemy unit on the road (not always possible) or lots of micromanagement.
This is particularly a problem as people expect such a feature, which exists for many years in RTS.
Possible solutions :
- Make groups of units move at the same speed by default. Most often it is the wanted behaviour, and when it is not they can be ordered separately thanks to the Focus key.
- Add a formation feature (with tanks in front and AA in the back, for example), making the group move at the same speed.

Major (**) : No visual feedback when giving orders. there is a spinning cross-hair that flashes to show the order was given its not perfect but you can see it
Unit paths are invisible, and the player receive no visual confirmation that the unit will actually do what is wanted (see above with planes how this is a problem). It is also impossible to know what orders a unit were given, so the player has to memorize it, which can also lead to mistakes.
Again, such a feature is expected, as it exists in RTS like Supreme Commander for a long time.
Possible solutions :
- Display the orders and path of the selected units when pressing Shift.
- Have a toggle/hotkey to display all orders.
- Display ETA in seconds to each waypoint. (Note that like IRL, this will only be an estimation. "Stuck in the mud" isn't planned...)

Major (**) : Many orders rushed in the first second of the game. order all your units to start moving to a location close to where you need them then issue individual orders to the units to do there specific orders
At the moment the game begins, a huge APS spike is asked to the player. An army worth thousands of points has to be ordered as fast as possible, often with several groups for several tasks. In addition to that, Ctrl-groups have to be defined, and each second lost can give the advantage to the opponent. While this would fit well in Starcraft 2, such an APS rush shouldn't be required in WAB.
Possible solutions :
- Allow to give orders and define Ctrl-groups to ghosts (probably impossible engine-wise).
- Add a second phase to deployment, where units are created but won't execute their orders yet. This way, orders can be chained at a less frantic pace, then will be executed when this second deployment phase ends.

Major (**) : No feedback on line of sight. devs have siad its a part of the game it is not changing
Landscape elements aren't always clearly visible, or it is not clear how they affect LoS. This can cause issues with recon or ATGM fire, when the enemy happens to be in an unforeseen dead angle. It is also a problem for recon range, as it is hard to judge what they can see or not.
Possible solutions :
- Display line of sight of the selected units (permanently or with a switch/hotkey), for example with colour or desaturation gradients.
- Similarly, display weapon (min and max) ranges (Supreme Commander does that, using varied colours for the varied weapons)

Major (**) : No tactical aid whatsoever. I disagree its all about paying attention and every body has the same limitations, the game does give you a notification when something happens outside your screen and if you have good recon you wont lose sight of the enemy
If a Special Force unit was spotted for half a second near your starting CV and you looked the other way (probably managing your front), you will never know it. A previously identified unit will be forgotten if it runs out of identification range. AA or artillery fire, despite having clearly visible origin, will never be indicated if you wasn't looking right at it when they fired.
The game is about superior tactics, but it will not give you the informations you need and should have, unless you were looking at the right place at the right time. This, combined with all the other micromanagement elements, create another unforgiving attention sink.
Possible solutions :
- Mark events like spotted units, visible fire and such, including how old was the information, what type was it (artillery fire, autocannon, SAM)/which way moved the unit.
- A previously identified unit stays identified until contact is entirely lost.
- Possibly keep the identification if it is obvious that it is the same unit, for example if contact was lost for half a second.

Major (**) : Stacking, cluttered icons. THE UI IS COMPLETELY CUSTOMIZABLE there are enough options to make it look however you want
Icons in big groups will either recover each-other, hiding them, or will cover a big surface, hiding the position of the units. Even at minimal size, icon will also hide terrain when zoomed out. Some will even use this to hide their units between 1pt trucks.
Also, icons are displayed above units, and units themselves tend to be smaller and less visible, hindering a fast read of where units are (worsened as you have to box-select units themselves, not icons).
Possible solutions :
- An option for smaller, Supreme Commander-like icons right on top of the units.
- Possibly a complete overhaul of how icons work, particularly when zoomed out.
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby Bluebreaker » Mon 1 Jul 2013 20:44

(on hidden stats) I still find funny that there is no indication in the unit card of when a infantry unit is considered conscript, normal, veteran or elite.
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby Iris » Mon 1 Jul 2013 22:26

Major (**) Units losing sight of targets they were actively engaging.
This is highly annoying when you're engaging something and it just "disappears" without actually doing any disengagement maneuvers. It wastes a lot of ATGM's or can make a target impossible to shoot back at because it disappears between it's own shots and the aiming cycles of your units. The popping in and out of units are annoying. I lost 300pts of Units to a 70pt unit for example because they couldn't shoot back at it fast enough before it'd pop back out.

Solution: Make units spotted as long as they are engaged. If they lose targettable LOS they'll be disengaged and they'll be hidden again.
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Re: The big 'UI Issues' thread

Postby TheFunnyOne1125 » Mon 1 Jul 2013 22:59

Id have to disagree with all of your micro thoughts.

I feel like when you take away some of the "micro"ing, then you dumb the game down a bit.
It shouldn't just feel like grab these units, attack here. This game is about "combined arms" and with that into account, then your gonna deal with a bit of micro managing.

I could explain this further, but idk if i want to now.

Ok ok, one example, take R.U.S.E.During the end of a match, it devolves into a slog fest (not hating i like the game).
You end up building large force, then just send them at the enemy. Whoever has more units and firepower wins. Yes it might be a mixed force and you might be moving some anti-air with your "micro"ing. But for the most part it just a "who has more" situation. Now sure ALB has more of a diversity, but that exactly why it fits this game so well. Thats "micro"ing needs to be there,

On another thought how would "Add a new toggle 'radar on/off', similar to the helicopter Altitude button." Help the issuse for "micro"ing them? You still have to press a button, like i said the "micro"ing needs to be there.

On another thought how would "- Show orders, so aircraft trajectory is visible and can be planned more in advance." help either? I think its "shift" to execute multiple orders? Plus you still might need to "micro" if the battlefield situation changes before your plane can execute his oders.

Great now my BUZZ is GONE 8-)
I open the forum for'em. They're waiting for me to chime in
And say what I said Simon, I'm debating if I should sign in.
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TheFunnyOne1125
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