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Old 11-20-2017   #1
LoganA's Avatar
Default Interface and Accessibility Preview

Posted by Mystic on 11-20-2017 04:01 AM.

So you have all been poking us for another status update for a while now, but several cool things just aren’t quite ready to show off yet. Instead, we’re going to try something different this time.

2.2 contains a lot of interface improvements over 2.1, with changes to everything from the menu UI to the way the game displays your character. Many of these changes are intended to help newer players learn how to play our game, which has a notoriously bad learning curve because parts of SRB2’s design conflict directly with the way modern Sonic behaves. We want the challenges in SRB2 to be intentional, not the unintended consequences of designing for an audience we know too well. However, there are also plenty of quality of life improvements for experienced players. While we know you may not find this as cool as new levels, we hope something here sparks your interest.

We’ll start with the biggest change: this is not analog mode. With 2.2, your character will face whatever direction you press by default. You finally get to see all the other sprites for the characters instead of constantly staring at Sonic’s butt the whole game. This change is purely visual, and moves like the thok and glide still go in the direction your camera is facing, not your character. In ringslinger modes this feature is disabled, and it’s also possible to disable it in the options should you prefer the old behavior, but we highly recommend giving it a shot.

To go along with that change, the control settings have also been changed significantly. You’ll notice the words “strafe” and “look” are gone entirely, replaced by the words “move” and “camera”. We’ve discovered a lot of new players try to play the game without using all of the movement controls, and therefore have a frustrating experience. We hope that by renaming the controls it makes the necessity of all the controls more obvious. Also, this menu is now a scrolling, categorized list, which puts all of the important controls at the top for easy readability.

Our attempts to teach new players the controls don’t stop there. This is a screenshot of a record attack replay being viewed, which shows the controls being used in a new HUD element in the bottom-left corner, as well as an icon for a new feature: automatic braking. One of the parts of SRB2 that new players generally don’t understand is the requirement to press the direction opposite of your momentum to skid to a stop, like the classic games. Automatic braking, which is on by default, behaves like the opposite direction is automatically “pressed” when the movement controls are released. While most veteran players will want to turn this off, this allows new players to more immediately have fun as they aren’t flying off into the wild blue yonder the instant they thok.

Another issue a lot of new players have had over the years is questions involving how to use addons in SRB2, as currently it requires the use of the console or command line. 2.2 features a brand new in-game addon browser, allowing you to simply select what addons you want to run and enable them. It also features a search field to allow you to type the partial name of what you’re looking for in the folder to find stuff quickly in a cluttered directory. Obviously, the console and command line methods still work, but if nothing else this should help for that situation when you’ve forgotten the filename of that one file with too many underscores.

We’ve also implemented some accessibility features to try to aid those who have trouble with our heavy use of color and audio cues. We’ve implemented a closed-captioning system for the hearing-impaired, which can also be useful for providing “sound” in silent GIF recordings. We’ve also developed an in-game tool to adjust the base palette at runtime to help add contrast for colorblind players. This screenshot has the palette tweaked for red-green colorblindness and has the captioning enabled.

Finally, all the menus were given a check for ease of understanding, rearranging and improving them across the entire game. Here are the current versions of the save select, level select, and multiplayer player setup menus. We've tried to improve the visuals for each menu as well as use scrolling and categories where applicable to make the menus as readable and easy to use as we can.

Last edited by Mystic; 11-20-2017 at 04:22 AM. Reason: Damn script still hates me.
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Old 11-20-2017   #2
Mystic's Avatar

As a reminder to everyone, discussing known information and speculating based on that information is okay, but don't go on tangents or make baseless speculation or absurd claims. To start off the thread, here are the answers to the questions I KNOW half of you are dying to ask yet again:

1. There is no release date. Asking will not change that. Making stupid jokes about how long it'll take will also get you infracted.
2. The netcode is still just as shitty as it ever was.

Keep things civil and intelligent, for everyone's sake.
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Old 11-20-2017   #3
damn she thicc
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I LOVE ALL OF YOU SO SO DEARLY what kind of sorcery goes into the development of this game????? Like I saw most of this stuff coming but like it all looks so polished and colorful in these screenshots. It blows my mind. I want to mention what I love about each and every detail shown here but then I'd have a 12 mile long post. I'm speechless. I'm overreacting and I'm going to cringe at this post in a week's time but that's how powerful your work is—it's making me feel these crazy deep emotions, yo. And that's just from viewing screenshots. Man. Thank you guys so much for all your hard work. I can't wait to see more.
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Old 11-20-2017   #4
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The Hype Train has no brakes!
2.2 is the REAL 2.1. at least for me
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Old 11-20-2017   #5

I really like the new menu designs, especially the controls.
Having those larger previews of the levels is nice, too.
And the new angles of the previews are much more interesting.

However, I think think the color setup is slightly confusing.
At first, I thought there were various shades to choose from.
But on a closer look, it appears to simply show the shades of the colors.
Or so I think.

Also with the addons selection, I assume that it will only show SRB2 specific files in the future?
I'm asking since the screenshot shows an HTML file.
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Old 11-20-2017   #6
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By default it only shows relevant filetypes. We disabled that for the screenshot to tease people who know what tudd.html is.
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Old 11-20-2017   #7

This is amazing!
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Old 11-20-2017   #8
PK3 Fetishist
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waitisthisreallya.pk3, Lol.
Sonic 3D Ass : Horrible camera island.
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Old 11-20-2017   #9
a.k.a. HyperFlare957
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Is it just me or has Tails' namesakes been made to act like they do in the classics when he jumps?
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Old 11-20-2017   #10
Way past cool!
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Oh my god, 2.2 gets even more amazing as you guys reveal more stuff. Seriously, I love the new save select, it gives me serious S3-Mania vibes, and that's a good thing. Keep up the amazing progress, because 2.2 is shaping up to be the best update yet.
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Old 11-20-2017   #11
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Wow looks awesome i wasn't expecting that
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Old 11-20-2017   #12
You know me, everyone does
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Wow this is amazing! So much polish has been added and i love it!. This'll be worth the wait.

I wonder if that Input UI can be displayed out of Record Attack.
Hit a 180° Rail shot
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Old 11-20-2017   #13
Eh, maybe later.
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Wait, the file selector has icons!? Aside from that, I think the new camera and the autobrake would be difficult to get used to, but as long as players can disable them, then it shouldn't be a problem. I'm loving that new menu, as well.
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Old 11-20-2017   #14
Meow Motherfuckers.
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I really like the progress you made so far, it reminds me how much you had improve since the first version of srb2... And yet, I'm super hyped to see more of this great content when this version will be finally published. Good job!
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Old 11-20-2017   #15
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I don't really care about the release date, I really care about the fact that modders can now somehow add "bing bing bong" and "wazoo" and "boom" into the GIFs.
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Old 11-20-2017   #16
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That new file select and addon menus look great! Really appreciating the quality-of-life changes made so far!

But why is the Egg Slimer blue reeee
Originally Posted by GreenKnight9000 View Post
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Old 11-20-2017   #17
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Originally Posted by Yoshirocks90 View Post
I think the new camera and the autobrake would be difficult to get used to, but as long as players can disable them, then it shouldn't be a problem.
It's not a new camera. The camera still works exactly as it always did. The difference is that the sprites that display are different. If you disable autobrake (and if you are reading this you are probably an advanced enough player that you should), the game controls exactly the same as it always did. Directionchar is a purely visual effect, like the skidding in 2.1. I'm sure tons of people will claim we changed something like with the skidding, but it's still the same =P
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Old 11-20-2017   #18
Knuckles MetalMind
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Loving all menus so far, the color one is specially awesome :) Using the S3K-Mania save menu is an awesome idea too! And it was finally time to get rid of the FPS words by renaming the controls (even if they are the basically the same).

I´m not so sure about the auto-braking and character facing changes until I actually experience them, but they feel like the kind of change that once you try, you can´t come back to the previous behaviour. It was always a waste not being able to see most of the sprites in normal gameplay.

I plan to try next SRB2 version with a gamepad :) Let´s see how it works against keyboard!
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Old 11-20-2017   #19
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Actually, autobrake is something you probably want off once you're experienced. I tried turning it on, and there's so much fine-tune controlling you lose with it on.
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Old 11-20-2017   #20
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This all looks amazing! That GIF looks so good.

Question: Has the default control scheme been changed now that the keys have been renamed? I haven't used the default controls in something like 10 years, but if I remember correctly:

Up arrow - Move Forward
Down arrow - Move Backward
Left arrow - Camera Left
Right Arrow - Camera Right
And "Move Left" and "Move Right" aren't mapped to any keys.

That seems quite odd when using the new names. It'd make more sense to have WASD controls be the default.

Originally Posted by Mystic View Post
By default it only shows relevant filetypes. We disabled that for the screenshot to tease people who know what tudd.html is.
I noticed that. Cute.
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