This week I have been quite busy, doing UI/ niceties to upgrade my game. It’s starting to take shape, and become something that I’m quite excited to have progress!
The most notable change is the ocean now looks more like an ocean, with slowly moving waves moving in and out. Here’s a sample of what it looks like (Forgive the sudden jump when it moves back to the beginning)
I’ve also spent some work getting the ship’s movement to look more realistic. The effect looks quite nice, and I am happy with it for now.
I’ve also improved the selection dialog for hold selection, as seen below. The boxes are now outlined with an “inner glow” of sorts, which improves the effect.
This week I will continue to work on the Captain. Specifically, I hope to start to show the effects of having a good captain from a poor one. I might continue a few UI elements that were started, but not finished, from last week. And if I have more time, I’ll start working on generating more realistic maps than I have before, although that likely will take a few weeks.
This, as promised, has been a week where I focused on the UI, as opposed to adding new features. I have made considerable changes, and I’m happy with what I’m seeing.
The biggest change was that the UI is now improved. You can see how things look below. In particular, note that one can now see a mini-view of the ship in the upper right hand corner. In addition, moving the mouse over objects will show information about that tile. I’m still trying to get some of the information more compact, but it is working for now at least.
There also have been a number of less visible changes. I changed some of the back end UI elements that make maintaining labels for cities easier. It also improved the look for when those labels overlap. I’ve pushed out the name of the captain, and the cash each ship has, to the front screen.
Coming next I’m hoping to improve the way the tooltip works. I’ve got a better idea of how to do things, but I haven’t gotten there quite yet, it will take some work. I’m also working on improving the hold selection process.
This week I put in a few changes that haven’t fully been realized, but will start to be over the next few weeks. The biggest change is that I now have working supplies, that have a number of days that count down to show how much food and water is left. These changes will allow for a more realistic ship trading experience. So far there isn’t any consequences of not having enough food or water on the ship, but that will come soon. It seems to be working, so far, and I’m excited for the day when this works as realized! Note in the image below that as the ship moves, and time passes, the food and water both count down.
There are a number of reasons that I haven’t added the consequences yet of not having enough food. One of the big ones is that I want to to add a crew to the ship first. The crew will have abilities, such as fishing, that will make a difference in the rate of supplies going down (They might even increase supplies somewhat). I’m still working out the details of exactly how that will work, but it is coming alone nicely.
I have decided that I am going to alternate, a couple of weeks working on new game features, and a couple of weeks perfecting game features, and working on general user interface issues. I’m hoping this will keep the game moving along, while still keeping a focus on UI.
Next up I’m going to do some more work towards making this an actual game. Right now I have what I think will work reasonably well as a tutorial. There is a lot of things that I’ve taken short-cuts for that I don’t really want to do in the main game. I’m going to start breaking out the game into a tutorial mode, and a non-tutorial mode. I suspect this will take some time, but I have a couple weeks. It’ll be nice to see the game taking more form!
I’m sorry to say there isn’t more of an update this week, but some weeks are bound to be slower than others I suppose. This week most of my time has been spent tackling supplies, which proved to be harder than I thought it would be, and thus taxed me to my limits. I’ve now come up with a method for doing so fully, and started putting it together, but it will take a bit of time unfortunately. I should be able to have something this week, however.
Aside from that, I did fix a few minor UI issues, the most notable being that the text labeling cities appears in the correct order. This small change proved quite difficult, but I was able to get it in the end. You can see below what my final version actually looks like, note that the ship is above the labels of the city, but the city labels are above the cities.
This week I should be able to get supplies working to some extent. I’m still trying to figure out how I’m going to represent these as UI elements, but I’m getting there, slowly. Until next week!