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Author Topic: Outer Colony  (Read 10667 times)

VoyagerGames

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #120 on: October 02, 2017, 08:07:20 pm »

Might I recommend putting the skill level of the characters to the left of the check boxes for each related task for the ones that are relevant?

That's an extremely solid idea. It's a little tricky, because many skills often influence single activities, and physical / personality traits often play roles, too. Accuracy when firing an assault rifle, for example, is directly influenced by dexterity, infantry maneuvering skill, and skill on the weapon type, but also by a bunch of indirect and temporary factors, like the operator's fatigue and fear. Fatigue and fear are aggravated and mitigated by traits like aggression and self discipline, as well as cultural factors and the human's own world view / preferences. Environmental awareness and situation specifics, like proximity to family members in life threatening situations, can also play a huge role.

The paragraph above may be a bit meandering, but it serves as a use case to demonstrate what I need provide users. All these factors play roles in the execution of this particular action, but it's not shown well enough to users yet, and I'm not sure what the best way is to display all the data. All these different factors just feed their own modifiers into the equations; I don't think I necessarily need to theory-craft the whole thing for players and explain exactly how all of it works, but some visual flavor of overview needs to be given to help guide users in optimizing their colonists' behaviors.

To that end, I've been trying to come up with good ideas to concisely display *most* of what a user needs to play the game properly. I built out a few in this colonist management UI for visually displaying all skills using area squares, like dwarf therapist. Again, this is a very early development screenshot, but here's an idea of what it'll look like:


I've only been able to develop a few hours here and there for the last week and a half, but I've got a long weekend coming up, and I hope I can use it to cut a new release with the first version of this interface for you guys to mess around with.

Quote
Island life is hard. The lack of resources is frustrating, but traders leave their ship and walk to the bottom of the ocean trying to find "A safe location". Maybe they're trying to walk along the bottom to the opposite shore?
This is a great test case, Scout. I haven't messed around with building in areas that are surrounded by water, and this will probably play havoc with some of my location utility functions. I wonder what the hell those idiots are running from, prompting them to find a safe location. I might need to expand the action text for this activity to provide that information.

Did they at least drown when they idiotically tried hiding at the bottom of the ocean? If they're still alive and just hanging out down there, this is indication of a pretty serious bug with drowning calculations. This is a great test case you're trying out - I can't believe I haven't really played on a small island before, but huge thanks for thinking of this!
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The Scout

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #121 on: October 02, 2017, 10:10:20 pm »

Quote
Island life is hard. The lack of resources is frustrating, but traders leave their ship and walk to the bottom of the ocean trying to find "A safe location". Maybe they're trying to walk along the bottom to the opposite shore?
This is a great test case, Scout. I haven't messed around with building in areas that are surrounded by water, and this will probably play havoc with some of my location utility functions. I wonder what the hell those idiots are running from, prompting them to find a safe location. I might need to expand the action text for this activity to provide that information.

Did they at least drown when they idiotically tried hiding at the bottom of the ocean? If they're still alive and just hanging out down there, this is indication of a pretty serious bug with drowning calculations. This is a great test case you're trying out - I can't believe I haven't really played on a small island before, but huge thanks for thinking of this!
Most of them just vanished, but atleast one from each shuttle is hiding at the bottom of the ocean.
I'm no good with the building system, so the colony lives underground and has the important stuff up top.
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ollobrains

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #122 on: October 08, 2017, 04:31:07 am »

im liking the new approach UI to needs / jobs / allocation of tasks it is looking good
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VoyagerGames

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #123 on: October 09, 2017, 01:45:42 pm »

There's nothing like a long weekend for getting some Outer Colony work done, and version 0.5.52 should be going live momentarily. This release is focused entirely on the new colonist management interface, which hopefully gives a little bit of the functionality needed to make running a colony easier. My focus here was really on reducing tedium and presenting data in a quickly accessible manner.

With that said, this release is just a first crack at things! I'm the only one who's used it at all so far, and I'm positive you guys are going to recognize improvements that can be made as soon as you try it out. There are a few things I already want to add, like etgfrog's suggestion for showing related skills / stats next to activities in the work configuration view, but I couldn't come up with an elegant way to do it.

I'm thinking tooltips, perhaps! This is to say that when you hover the mouse over a particular job, a graphic will pop up that shows skill and stat levels for everything related to the activity. I didn't have time to code it today, and I didn't want to hold up this initial release any further, but it's something I hope to experiment with in the coming weeks.

With that said, here's a quick overview of the new interface. It can be accessed from the top menu bar, under Colony Configuration -> General Colonist Management.



The first thing you'll see is the simplified activity management view. You can change views by clicking on the drop-down box in the top left corner of the UI. You can check and uncheck boxes here to simply enable and disable types of work for colonists.

Also, in both this and the advanced activities view, you can click the "Auto Configure All" button - this will algorithmically set work priorities on all activities for all colonists, based on their calculated aptitudes. Basically, clicking this button performs the exact same task that a competent minister of labor will perform during his work shift. The algorithm isn't perfect, and players may still want to tweak priorities for a bunch of reasons, but this will generally make colonists do the things they're best at.



The second part of the activity view is its advanced mode. Here, you can set specific priorities for all the different tasks.



Next, there's a skills view. This is pretty straightforward, showing all the skill levels of all your colonists. Consult the map key at the top of the window for a description of how to read the graphics, but hopefully it's visually intuitive. You can also click on the column headers to sort colonists by skill level. For example, if you want to see the most skilled miners, click on the "Mine" column header.



Finally, there's the stats view. This shows all the physical and personality stats for your colonists. Again, you can click on the column headers to sort your colonists, which I've found pretty handy.

If you guys have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to post them, as always! I know there's still a lot of room for improvement here, but I hope it makes the mechanics of playing the game a bit easier.
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( Tchey )

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #124 on: October 09, 2017, 03:46:43 pm »

I need to try it, but from here, it seems to be an excellent RimDwarfWorldTherapist-ish tool.
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ollobrains

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #125 on: October 17, 2017, 09:07:18 pm »

it seems like a good solid improvement and will make colonist management a lot easier, and additional room to build on it
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ollobrains

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #126 on: October 21, 2017, 10:32:20 pm »

its actually a pretty wide range of duties adn roles already embedded in the game as well
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ollobrains

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #127 on: October 25, 2017, 04:47:49 pm »

anyone else been playing this latley, i have gotten a fair way into a game current bugs and all that.  Quite enjoyable
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Asgarus

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #128 on: October 25, 2017, 05:11:21 pm »

Unfortunately not that much recently. I'm busy with other games. I will definitely come back to this though.

Sam, have you found an artist for the iso graphics yet? Just out of curiosity. :)
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( Tchey )

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #129 on: October 26, 2017, 02:35:56 am »

I hold myself from playing, waiting for a mode advanced developpement. I really enjoyed my previous attempts, i  just don't want to burst myself too much. When i'm playing very early alpha, i prefer to wait a few updates between my sessions, so i can provide better feedbacks with a fresh mind.
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Ehndras

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #130 on: October 28, 2017, 09:35:06 am »

Holy crap, its the game I've waited my whole life to find!
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ollobrains

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #131 on: October 31, 2017, 03:50:10 am »

its a good title, im playing a bit of this and a bit of the new alpha 18 rimworld just while we wait for the next small update whenever that is of outer colony
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Ehndras

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #132 on: October 31, 2017, 12:34:39 pm »

Played around with it a bit.

Is it just me, or do workers randomly decide to skip a whole day or more of work to produce virtual media? Even when not assigned the job and with zero skill in writing?

I have a ton of data terminals and all my workers are constantly playing with writing virtual media instead of harvesting crops and producing stuff. One couple has been waiting for days to get a bed in their new house because both my consumer goods manufacturer guys are writing virtual media instead,

Work orders seem horribly inefficient too. I can't seem to find a way to differentiate food vs other raw materials. My food station is 1 step from the food stockpile, but all the meat and crops get brought to the materials one. Ordered 100 grennage rolls, the guy walks back and forth twice each time to grab small stacks of meat and grennage. Then produces one roll and does it again. Then another worker runs way across to pick up the single grennage roll and drops it, then runs back to the social area, then comes all the way back to grab another one.


... was just watching one of my workers. He finally finished producing virtual media, went and got materials to make a bed, started work on it, then decided it was leisure time. Then he ran around socializing and such a bit, then started producing more virtual media.

Contrats, you've discovered the lazy facebook/twitter nuts of the future.

...This is why I play the low-tech rimworld clans and don't have data uplinks :P
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Quote from: Yoink
You're never too old to enjoy flying body parts.  
Quote from: Vector
Ehndras, you are the prettiest man I have ever seen
Quote from: Dorsidwarf
"I am a member of Earth. I enjoy to drink the water. In Earth we have an internal skeleton."

Ehndras

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #133 on: October 31, 2017, 12:39:44 pm »

Pssst: you can tell them to work during leisure hours too by checking the associated boxes in the character main display.

Useful, also, for not letting your soldiers dick around when you're expecting trouble.

My one amazing genius 100-skill max stat female, Gartha or some such, just married and was impregnated by a rando who saw lots of infantry combat action from killing annoying pests who kept trying to eat my food. Lo and behold, she's extremely attracted to those who've seen combat. Go figure.
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Quote from: Yoink
You're never too old to enjoy flying body parts.  
Quote from: Vector
Ehndras, you are the prettiest man I have ever seen
Quote from: Dorsidwarf
"I am a member of Earth. I enjoy to drink the water. In Earth we have an internal skeleton."

VoyagerGames

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Re: Outer Colony
« Reply #134 on: November 03, 2017, 10:33:48 am »

Huge thanks for the continued playtesting and feedback, guys!

Quote
Sam, have you found an artist for the iso graphics yet? Just out of curiosity. :)
I think I'm close to making an exciting announcement on this front. I'm talking with a really, really, really talented isometric pixel artist, and I'm very excited about the prospect of bringing her onto the team. I'll hold off on saying more until our situation becomes more certain, but I'll post an update as soon as I have solid news on that front.

Tchey and Asgarus, you guys are definitely taking the right approach by holding off on playing a ton. I think it'll be way more fun after another few patches and once the graphics overhaul is underway, and I think people do much better testing when they're really into the experience. I'll post here when the next patch is out!

And thanks for the continued feedback, ollobrains! I'm hoping to get another patch out with a few more minor bug fixes next month, in parallel with the graphics overhaul. Progress is a bit slow this month, due to some circumstances outside my control, but I'm still plugging away when I can get a free hour here or there. Stay tuned!

Thank you for trying it out, too, Ehndras. Setting colonists to work on leisure shifts is a solid way to keep 'em chugging...so long as you don't mind them getting a little unhappy about having to work around the clock!

Quote
Contrats, you've discovered the lazy facebook/twitter nuts of the future.
This cracks me up! The media system is one of the funniest parts of the game sometimes, and I'm always amused when people become consumed by an obsession to fiddle around on the DataNet terminals.

Quote
My one amazing genius 100-skill max stat female, Gartha or some such, just married and was impregnated by a rando who saw lots of infantry combat action from killing annoying pests who kept trying to eat my food. Lo and behold, she's extremely attracted to those who've seen combat. Go figure.
Haha, that's really funny! I love it when people pay attention to the interactions of individual colonists like this - I always have fun watching their little lives unfold. There might be a good reason for her liking this kind of thing. Are you generally promoting militarism in your local culture? If your colonists have produced a ton of media glorifying infantry combat, it may well have pushed her to really liking that sort of thing.

As a quick update on where development is: I've had to put most work on hold for the last two weeks, aside from a tiny bit of programming. I'm emailing with an amazingly talented pixel artist, and hopefully there will soon be some good news to report on that front. In the interim, my car broke down last Friday night, and I've been scrambling a bit to find a replacement. My brother (who is the most amazing person in the world) let me borrow his car to get to work last week, but I've got to come up with a more permanent solution this weekend.



My Pontiac served me extremely well. I had it up to 208k miles, and it was still running like a champ, for the most part. The brakes failed catastrophically while I was driving, though, and it was a bit of a scary situation. Buying a decent car is one of those things I had sorta' put aside in order to work on Outer Colony, but I've hit a point where it'll cost far more to fix it than the car is worth. Hopefully I can get a new set of wheels this weekend, put this challenge behind me, and make great progress on Outer Colony when I'm done!

Wish me luck, guys!
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