Re: [gamedesign-l] Re: Realism Vs. Playability
- On Thu, 29 Mar 2001, James Margaris wrote:
> I would claim that RTS games are just about the most uniform in terms ofFPSs really have it no more or less common than beat-'em-ups. Especially
> interface. Hit a to force attack, right click to move or interact something,
> assign keys using ctrl+#, etc. It isn't the rule but it is a very common
> trend. FPS games also have a pretty common interface, strafe left and right,
> rotate or switch to weapons, etc. Mouse look, arrow move, that sort of
once you throw in the relevant bits of physics and admit that the things
exist on platforms that don't have keyboards and mice :-) RTSs are more
uniform than most, but I wouldn't go as far as to say there's been a
universal language defined, or even close to it.
> Of course the small level details of their implementations are different toDescent, Doom, Timesplitters, UT, System Shock (2). A reasonably diverse
> some degree, but I consider that difference far less than say Street Fighter
> and Virtua FIghter. (Or Virtua Fighter and Tekken might be better examples
> as they are both 3d)
set of inputs once you actually pay some attention, and I think comparing
System Shock 2 and Descent 3 might just be on the order of Virtua Fighter
'In Ankh-Morpork even the shit have a street to itself...
Truly this is a land of opportunity.' - Detritus, Men at Arms
- Peter said a vernacular's like a way of speaking local to an area - like a
dialect. I suppose that's where the reference to 'regions' and 'towns'
>If anything, it says "vernacular" means informal speech of aYou are trying to define something to be informal, which is a
>region, so it's foolish to use it to define formal speech. Our "vernacular"
>is whatever we already use to speak to each other on this mailing list.
contradiction, since informal things are inherently freeform, and (wait for
Finally, as James and I pointed out, no two games are the exactly the same
(clones don't count, since they are essentially the same game, besides the
fact that they are Bad) so therefore have different focuses, and different
requirements from the interface. Therefore, the interfaces should be
different, and a complete common vernacular (formal or informal) seems to
run counter to this.
OTOH, games have lots of similarities. Just about all RTS games have a
'move' command for units. Perhaps this could be a common icon (an arrow or
something), so that a player looks at it and knows it is a move icon. But
this would be quite limited, as only the common icons would be
applicable. And when you get on to the placement of icons, things get
really complicated. The thing is, I only mentioned half of the problem
earlier. Designers all have their own ideas on what makes a good
interface. Some like you to click on a unit to have access to what it
does, while others place many orders in a central place. A good case is
when you want to build things in an RTS:
- In C&C (at least Tib Sun - only C&C game I've actually played) to build
a unit you click on an item from a menu. The unit exits from the factory
you have defined. This means that you don't have to run around a map
looking for the right factory, but you don't have as much control over
where the units will actually appear.
- When you want to do the same thing in, say AOK, you click on a unit
factory, and choose the unit to build. The unit exits out of that
factory. You get more control, but it can be a chore.