Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

jpinard
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Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:28 pm

I'm going to try and not cover stuff that was mentioned in the partial dev road-map. I hope you find this useful Cliffski, and also wanted to mention this game has been very fun and enjoyable at a time when I'm very sick and have not been able to have fun with my gaming. Trying to walk back to normalcy and this was nice.

* First point - the game is brilliant and I love it. So as I get into the nitty gritty of what I would desperately like to see addressed please understand there's no over-arching negativity as there is so much that's great and there is so much potential. I would gladly pay to keep supporting this with DLC after release to give it legs.

* GUI - I don't have the patience to watch Youtube videos to learn how to play a game so this was tough. I re-did the tutorial (and reset it) about 5x and even then still I didn't quite grasp how the +/slots thing worked beyond you had to put things in order. Many times I found myself with redundant positions, the "fit body" main group, and then each subgroup after it: fit bodyframe then fit roof, then fit doors, just when I thought I had the base group needed to provide upgrades via research I'd realize I hadn't gone "deep enough" into the tree. What we really need is a keyboard command, like hitting "ctrl" so we can see when mousing through the slot trees what stations have what upgrades. Going back and forth between the research tree and the slot tree is a little frustrating when trying to find something. Or maybe we could right click on a research tree element, for example "powered tail-gate" and it would take us right to the selected slot tree component ie. it would open up the fit body >> fit trunk. Otherwise it's a constant memorization scheme. While I'm willing to put in the time, others won't and will find it tedious/frustrating.

* Sound effects. I would much rather you put time/money/effort into sound effects instead of music. What few sound effects are available are fantastic, but we need a LOT more. Just a few that want to tear the tape off their mute mouths - paint dryer stations (go into a car wash and just record from that), generator room rumble, a little something for the research labs (typing on keyboard would suffice), phone calls in the export room, crackle of high heat in the QA zone.

* It may not be possible but I'd really like to be able to rotate the screen. I keep clicking Q and E to try and rotate in 90 degree increments to get a better view of some things. If the engine won't allow for this that's understandable, but it sure would be nice.

* I'd like an option to mark down selected cars in the showroom. I like to have a limited number of car models and sometimes when assigning upgrades we won't find out until it hits the sale floor that the accouterment wasn't actually manufactured and installed because it was buried deeper in the slot tree than we thought. So we get cars that are missing items, or were changed half-way through the assembly line and trying to remember to change the price at xxx point of time is just not possible. So it would be great to just go into the showroom, see the couple cars missing stuff and be able to mark just them down there - while leaving the rest of the names line as is. It kinda gives you the feeling you're in the dealership making deals.

* Way too much unnecessary scrolling in windows for resolutions higher than 1080P. Seeing such small windows and a long scroll bars - not fun for carpal tunnel.

* Financial Department Income slot. Allow us to de-select a car so it doesn't busy up the window so much. I have a lot of cars I barely even made any of so having them in the list all the time is just more stuff to scroll through to get to the meat of what I want to see and compare.

* Most of the time I miss the important little messages in the bottom right corner of the screen. Sometimes Steam pop-ups block it, so it would be nice to have a message log we can go back and see.

* Developer roadmap:
** New researchable recruitment abilities that reduce labour costs.
**Replacing humans with robots.


Robots are already well represented. Putting development time into having humans replaced by robots, or functional work to reduce labour costs -
that's depressing. Please consider skipping it and focus your development resources elsewhere. There's plenty of stuff to add to the game without having to remind everyone how disposable they are (or can be) in modern society.

* Lawsuits - this is something I'd add so you can having varying QA levels that means something beyond the future update price permeability. Choose lower cost QA and maybe a whole line of cars has frayed brake wires which may result in a class-action lawsuit or force you to do a costly recall. This would necessitate installing a Law office that would go under facilities and compete for space.

* Scrolling - did I mention scrolling? It really hurts the enjoyment of the game when you have to scroll that much in info windows when so much screen real estate is available. I'm at 2560x1600 so it's got to be a lot worse for people playing at 4k resolutions.

Thanks for listening and for a great game. :)
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby Steve-O » Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:04 pm

I also find the showroom to be a real drag to use. Can we please just get a summary of how many cars off what type we have in the show room? It is organized by chronology of what cars we produced, but once they leave the factory, and go to the showroom, there is nothing we can do to interact with them so we simply need a crisp clean one window look at how many we have, what markup is at for each type. If you have 30 different types of cars in production then it make sense for a scroll-able summary but right now the chronological ordering is not easy or helpful to use.
jpinard
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:41 pm

Steve-O wrote:I also find the showroom to be a real drag to use. Can we please just get a summary of how many cars off what type we have in the show room? It is organized by chronology of what cars we produced, but once they leave the factory, and go to the showroom, there is nothing we can do to interact with them so we simply need a crisp clean one window look at how many we have, what markup is at for each type. If you have 30 different types of cars in production then it make sense for a scroll-able summary but right now the chronological ordering is not easy or helpful to use.


No no no. I'm not saying the showroom is a drag to use, I love the showroom! I like the fact we have a "visual", it just needs to allow us to click on a car that isn't selling (usually because things changed on the production line and is missing features) so we can assign a different price to just that car, and another checkbox so we can apply price changes to all models that fit that package within the named car design. So if you've lost track of your game and have a 100 cars in there and have also lost track of option changes in said cars because the production line is long and changed often, you can easily gain back control without having to click on each one individually. Right now, I just drop the price insanely for all the models to dump inventory when this happens because it's too much clicking.

Maybe if there was a checkbox to switch it to "list view" for circumstances like you mention that would be another great user convenience feature.
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:00 am

I just decided I should put more effort into defining some convenience factors.

Windows that desperately need to be 2x size for displays that are 2560x1600 up to 4k to reduce scrolling fatigue:
* Car Designs
* Factory Efficiency: Components
* Financial Department: Income
* Financial Department: Imports
* Financial Department: Prices
* Financial Department: Features
* When you click on a car directly on the conveyor belt

Windows that would be nice to have 2x size, but not as critically:
* Car Stock Showroom
* Car Stock Showroom Market
* Financial Department: Expenses

Please, please, please give us a hotkey to change what default tab is opened when we click on manufacturing stations (or at the minimum a checkbox option in settings). I have to add thousands and thousands of extra clicks a game because most of the time I need to check upgrades when I bring up those stations, not the efficiency. While I like the efficiency stuff, 90% of the time I bring those windows up it's to check the upgrade options (see pic).

Production Line default tab.jpg
Production Line default tab.jpg (444.75 KiB) Viewed 242 times
jpinard
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:10 am

In the Financial Department: Part Prices please give us the option to click multiple fields so we can see them compared over time instead of only allowing us to see one at a time. Please excuse the crappy MS Paint illustration:

Production Line Part Prices.jpg
Production Line Part Prices.jpg (347.81 KiB) Viewed 241 times
jpinard
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Tue Oct 24, 2017 1:05 am

I hope these poorly made MS Paint images are helpful to elucidate changes that would make the game more user friendly.

Options that would be nice to have in settings:
PL extra options.jpg
PL extra options.jpg (181.94 KiB) Viewed 240 times



We could really use a shortcut key or the ability to ctrl-click on x to close all windows at once. Thisis short exmaple, but I"ve had 50 windfows open at once as I try to parse through all the cars in my line looking for something.
PL close all windows.jpg
PL close all windows.jpg (532.03 KiB) Viewed 240 times



Here's how I imagined the showroom changed (note: the arrow is just there to show the new popup that would happen once you click the "change this cars price" box):
PL Showroom.jpg
PL Showroom.jpg (1.52 MiB) Viewed 240 times


woops zoomed in - can we see it now?

PL Showroom2.jpg
PL Showroom2.jpg (245.11 KiB) Viewed 234 times
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cliffski
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby cliffski » Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:25 pm

This is awesome feedback, and much appreciated. Really glad you like the game. I do agree that the option to mark down existing cars is a good idea, and also one that has been mentioned elsewhere. Its currently on a long todo list, but has not been forgotten.
I also have 2560 monitors so I know what you mean, although I admit to primarily testing in 1920x1080 res as its the most common one. I shall look into reducing scrolling.
basically you only notice the few places I haven't adjusted for screen res, rather than the dozens that do (like the slot picker, and the research screen :D)

Expect the GUI to get better over time (and the tutorial/hints/help), although I may have to get electric/hybrid drive trains in before I spend a big chunk of time on GUI polish.
jpinard
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Tue Oct 24, 2017 11:26 pm

As I've been playing today I now think Ctrl-left clicking on the manufacturing stations is the best way to bring up stations with the upgrades tab opened. As I play, my left hand over WASD, the pinky naturally rests over ctrl, so ctrl-clicking is an extremely natural way to bring up alternate versions of many things stuff (though this may not be true for left handed people). But if not, then having the change default option in settings is great.

I have two more hopefully simpler requests.

#1 Put the name under the car in small type in the showroom. This will make things super easy there. If you could do it like shown I think it would blend well.
PL Car showroom car names2.png
PL Car showroom car names2.png (301.24 KiB) Viewed 210 times


#2

As shown in the pic, let us open the slot tree so we can see what we're doing. This would have saved me so much trouble. It's not "critical" now as I'm finally starting to memorize stuff, but for every single new person playing this is going to be frustrating for them as they keep screwing things up because they thought something was an "end point" but there was much more beyond. If it stays greyed out, it should not confuse or mess people up trying to build something they haven't researched.

PL please let us open greyed out slot trees.png
PL please let us open greyed out slot trees.png (465.49 KiB) Viewed 210 times
jpinard
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Re: Some notes after a 2-day, 16-hour binge

Postby jpinard » Wed Oct 25, 2017 3:57 am

I'd like to be able to ctrl-click or double click on a chassis/car on the conveyor belt and have the camera follow it around automatically as it goes from station to station. That would be the ultimate immersion feature in the game. Watching it get built little by little is entrancing and awesome. If I didn't have to pan the camera manually - it'd be perfect :)

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