The Daily Click ::. Forums ::. Klik Coding Help ::. How many buttons is too many?
 

Post Reply  Post Oekaki 
 

Posted By Message

Sketchy

Cornwall UK

Registered
  06/11/2004
Points
  1960

VIP MemberWeekly Picture Me This Round 43 Winner!Weekly Picture Me This Round 47 WinnerPicture Me This Round 49 Winner!
20th December, 2008 at 14:37:38 -

I decided to make a quick & easy little top-down tank game, and to make it a bit different, I've given it proper tank movement - ie. You control the speed of the left and right tracks independently.

Problem is, I can't decide on a good control scheme.


I currently have one hand controlling movement (using up to 2 of 4 keys). This is not particularly intuitive, so it requires a significant amount of coordination.

However, I also need control of the turret's aiming and firing, which also requires decent coordination. I could use the keyboard - 3 keys for rotate left/right plus fire) or I could use the mouse to aim (gradually rotate turret to face cursor). Which would be better?


Either way, I find my left hand (which is totally uncoordinated in my case) having to do a lot. Is this going to be a problem for people. I'm starting to think there's a good reason real tanks have separate people for driving and aiming the gun...








 
n/a

W3R3W00F

Drum and Bass Fueled Psycho

Registered
  08/11/2008
Points
  368

VIP MemberCardboard BoxThe Cake is a Lie
20th December, 2008 at 15:36:44 -

Here's a suggestion... Change your movement keys in the game control preferences to the W,A,S,D controls. I know you're not very coordinated with your left hand, but years of Comp gaming has lead me to good coordination. (Well, BETTER... ) With years of practice you'll get down with it. Trust me, I've been gaming since I was three.

Also, I'd use the mouse to aim. Likewise, it'd be suited best for most gamers out there. Another suggestion. Use the basic arrow keys and use two buttons for rotating the cannon. e.g: Z is button 1. Button 1 makes the cannon rotate left. X is button 2. Button 2 makes the tank explode!!! cannon rotate right. I'd recommend using A and S as rotate, and Z and X for firing purposes or whatever you'd use them for, so that everything is close together and simple enough to use.

If you're better with a Joystick just use that.

Bottum line: Keep the keys fairly close together, and simple enough for your left hand to use.

Edited by W3R3W00F

 
n/a

Sketchy

Cornwall UK

Registered
  06/11/2004
Points
  1960

VIP MemberWeekly Picture Me This Round 43 Winner!Weekly Picture Me This Round 47 WinnerPicture Me This Round 49 Winner!
20th December, 2008 at 15:58:18 -

Thanks for the suggestions

I definitely want to use the proper tank control - otherwise it's just the same as a million other shootemups. I'm not going to spend a lot of time on it, and it's unlikely to be very good, so it may aswell be a little different.

A joystick would be absolutely perfect for this game (especially if it's one of those ones that twists aswell), but of course I don't have one

I've tweaked the movement a bit and even I am starting to get the hang of it now - it's kind of like reversing a car (which I never had trouble with) - the controls are backwards, so to turn right, you have to make the *left* track turn faster.
It sounds like the average gamer might be a fair bit more ambidextrous than me, so it should be ok I think.

It'll probably be worth having a decent training level though, just to get the player used to controlling the tank before they meet anything that can actually shoot back...

Edited by Sketchy

 
n/a

W3R3W00F

Drum and Bass Fueled Psycho

Registered
  08/11/2008
Points
  368

VIP MemberCardboard BoxThe Cake is a Lie
20th December, 2008 at 16:22:13 -

NO! the player goes right into battle! No ifs, ands, or buts! LOL just kidding. A training level would be a good way to go.

Also I've looked up some joysticks and game pads online. Here's what I found.

Three good ways to go here! Booyah. (Thank you Kramer! )

http://www.target.com/gp/search/183-8272023-5823363?field-keywords=pc%20joystick&afid=google&CPNG=Furniture&LNM=pc_joystick&LID=1551008&ref=tgt_adv_XSGT0731

Lol This one looks like a space ship. It was rated 1/5 by the buyers on Amazon so I wouldn't recommend getting it. It's cheap and suicidal is what I've heard. This joy stick ran out of joy. Now it's a stick.

http://www.amazon.com/Gravis-Destroyer-Joystick-2-Button-Throttle/dp/B00004Z5X8

4/5 stars makes for a pretty good gamepad! For $10.00 it's pretty good. I'd get this to tbh. It says it plays on PC or Mac. Neato!

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Precision-Plug-Play-Gamepad/dp/B00030AX3Q/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_k2a_3_txt/188-2291319-6175730?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-2&pf_rd_r=0FNE3VRBEDGRFWNMA2PD&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_p=304485601&pf_rd_i=B00004Z5X8

$20.00 gives you this. 3.5/5 stars for a pretty nifty Joy stick isn't bad!

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-963291-0403-Attack-3-Joystick/dp/B0000ALFC5/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_k2a_2_img/188-2291319-6175730?pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-2&pf_rd_r=0FNE3VRBEDGRFWNMA2PD&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_p=304485601&pf_rd_i=B00004Z5X8

OK, OK. THIS joystick is PRIME! 3.5/5 stars and just 5 bucks more than the previous one gets you THIS uber Joystick! As far as Joysticks go this is a BEAUT!
Gyah, look at that chrome and black style! Awesome.

http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Extreme-Joystick-Silver-Black/dp/B00009OY9U/ref=dp_cp_ob_e_image_1

And with that, I'll just leave it there.

Anyways, good luck on your game!

Edited by W3R3W00F

 
n/a

Sketchy

Cornwall UK

Registered
  06/11/2004
Points
  1960

VIP MemberWeekly Picture Me This Round 43 Winner!Weekly Picture Me This Round 47 WinnerPicture Me This Round 49 Winner!
20th December, 2008 at 17:30:55 -

Thanks.
I appreciate the effort, but I don't think I'll buy a joystick just for this game, and I don't really like them for other games (except flight sims, which I don't have any of either).

I always used to want one of these: http://www.amazon.com/Suncom-F-15E-Talon-Joystick-button/dp/B0009MCTOE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1229793666&sr=1-2 I don't know what I'd have used it for, but it's got zillions of programable buttons and stuff, and it looks like a joystick out of a real jet fighter

Any thoughts on what the gameplay should involve would be good too.
"A game with proper tank control" is all I got so far. It was going to be just a simple online arena type game (with the movement as the gimmick), but I can't find my wifi adaptor so I have no way of testing it. AI's a bit of a pain in the arse, so I didn't really want to have to make other vehicles/missions etc.

 
n/a

W3R3W00F

Drum and Bass Fueled Psycho

Registered
  08/11/2008
Points
  368

VIP MemberCardboard BoxThe Cake is a Lie
20th December, 2008 at 17:40:03 -

Yeah, I've got a Microsoft sidewinder gamepad and the only time I used it pretty often was when my sis broke her arm.



 
n/a

Knudde (Shab)

Administrator
Crazy?

Registered
  31/01/2003
Points
  5125

Has Donated, Thank You!Clickzine StaffKlikCast StarVIP MemberGhostbuster!Dos Rules!I donated an open source project
20th December, 2008 at 19:12:28 -

Saitek Cyborg 3D Gold is one of the greatest joysticks ever made. It works great for Mechwarrior, space, and flight sims. Paid about $40 for it like 8 years ago.

I just use a PS2 pad on my PC with a $5 adapter from Radio Shack.

 
Craps, I'm an old man!

W3R3W00F

Drum and Bass Fueled Psycho

Registered
  08/11/2008
Points
  368

VIP MemberCardboard BoxThe Cake is a Lie
20th December, 2008 at 19:19:54 -


Originally Posted by Knudde (Shab)
Saitek Cyborg 3D Gold is one of the greatest joysticks ever made. It works great for Mechwarrior, space, and flight sims. Paid about $40 for it like 8 years ago.

I just use a PS2 pad on my PC with a $5 adapter from Radio Shack.



Heh... Didn't know a PS2 was capable of that. Never heard of the adapter...

 
n/a

AndyUK

Mascot Maniac

Registered
  01/08/2002
Points
  14456

Game of the Week WinnerSecond GOTW AwardHas Donated, Thank You!VIP Member
21st December, 2008 at 03:52:04 -


Originally Posted by W3R3W00F "Castle" B@RK3NH0WL
Yeah, I've got a Microsoft sidewinder gamepad and the only time I used it pretty often was when my sis broke her arm.




I have one of those and it has served me well for many a year.

 
.

Muz



Registered
  14/02/2002
Points
  6499

VIP MemberI'm on a BoatI am an April FoolHonored Admin Alumnus
21st December, 2008 at 03:57:57 -

From what I've seen, if you think the controls are tough, chances are that 80% of your players will think that it's much too complicated to even play, and 15% of them will think it's simple and that the 80% are lazy

A simple rule is that it should be easy to handle with a joystick. I'm sure most of us could get the hang of it, but most free games have to get the player sucked in the first 10 minutes.

Here's an idea.. how about you make an 'easy' version, with easy controls, and an 'expert' version for the more advanced controls?

 
Disclaimer: Any sarcasm in my posts will not be mentioned as that would ruin the purpose. It is assumed that the reader is intelligent enough to tell the difference between what is sarcasm and what is not.

Image

Cecilectomy

noPE

Registered
  19/03/2005
Points
  305

Has Donated, Thank You!VIP MemberWeekly Picture Me This Winner!Cardboard BoxGhostbuster!Pokemon Ball!ComputerBox RedSanta HatSnowman
I am an April Fool
21st December, 2008 at 04:13:55 -

what happened to the other 5% muz?

 
n/a

W3R3W00F

Drum and Bass Fueled Psycho

Registered
  08/11/2008
Points
  368

VIP MemberCardboard BoxThe Cake is a Lie
21st December, 2008 at 06:12:59 -


Originally Posted by Cecil
what happened to the other 5% muz?

The chance no one will play it?

 
n/a

Pixelthief

Dedicated klik scientist

Registered
  02/01/2002
Points
  3419

Game of the Week WinnerWeekly Picture Me This Winner!You've Been Circy'd!VIP MemberI like Aliens!Evil klikerThe SpinsterI donated an open source project
21st December, 2008 at 08:05:23 -

Not counting arrow keys / WASD, games should aim for no more than 4 keys for in-game, with preference to 2 or 3. Not including 'pause game' stuff like menu usually. But imagine your game is being played on a gameboy, and all you have is A, B, Start & Select. In generally, one shift and one attack key, and keeping a minimal amount of 'combo' controls, like SHIFT+UP, is a good idea. Four is generally too many, like CTRL,SHIFT,ENTER,SPACE BAR. Just CTRL/SHIFT/ENTER is enough. Simplicity rules.

 
Gridquest V2.00 is out!!
http://www.create-games.com/download.asp?id=7456

Sketchy

Cornwall UK

Registered
  06/11/2004
Points
  1960

VIP MemberWeekly Picture Me This Round 43 Winner!Weekly Picture Me This Round 47 WinnerPicture Me This Round 49 Winner!
21st December, 2008 at 13:03:24 -

Thanks again for the suggestions.

Customisability (is that even a word?) could be the way to go - let the player set it up how they want.

Having played with it a bit, I don't think it's the *number* of buttons that's the problem exactly. WASD control is very intuitive and everyone's used to it - tank controls less so. At first you have to concentrate quite hard to figure out how to go where you want. This might sound like it makes the game needlessly hard, but it's kind of the point.

One characteristic of popular online games seems to be that experienced players are able to annihilate noobs, but not as a result of having extra knowledge - if you can gain an advantage by learning the map and other secrets and quirks, then it ceases to be a game of skill. Noobs (and everyone starts out as a noob) will be put off because they perceive the veterans as effectively cheating. However, if they can see they were beaten fair and square, they may be more inclined to keep playing in the hope of become better.

What I'm trying to say, is that a game needs to be very simple, but still hard to master. Think Chess - you can learn how the pieces move in 5 minutes, but you can spend your whole life trying to master it.



 
n/a
   

Post Reply



 



Advertisement

Worth A Click