Author Topic: Ideas for improving xcom craft usability  (Read 2771 times)

Offline bramcor

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Ideas for improving xcom craft usability
« on: September 01, 2010, 02:07:24 am »
In continuation of my post with ideas for improving on UFO's usability-issues, here are my thoughts about the functionality of xcom craft features - from the same point of view, that is. I still try to keep new features to a minimum, and work with what is already there to help the player be better at playing. Feel free to comment and add your own ideas!


# In dogfights, give a clear indication of whether over land or sea
* In fringe cases it is very difficult to tell from indications on the globe

# Let the player send the same craft on two successive tactical missions without returning to base in between.
* In UFO crafts get a "low on fuel" indication after landing at a crash site even though it has much more than 50% fuel left.

# In dogfights, let player click on craft weapon icons to activate/deactivate weapon. This would enable attacks with only one weapon.
* This would be useful against smaller UFOs, if you don't want to destroy them completely!

# In UFO the game has trouble auto-zooming-out after engagements with more than 1 xcom craft - it would be nice if it worked as expected in OpenXcom (full zoom out after every dogfight).
* It is bothersome to manually resetting zoom, when you are left with the feeling that the game should be doing it on its own.

# Don't show "fuel low - returning to base" dialog for crafts already heading for base, just make it impossible to redirect them to other objectives after they run low, and make sure it shows clearly on the craft info dialog.
* Superfluous information that the player doesn't know unless he intends to redirect the craft, in which case the descriptive dialog will show it.

# In dogfight, change distance indicator units to KM rather than the "range units" used in UFO.
* Such a change would make it much easier to relate to distances than arbitrarily chosen units allow for.

# In dogfights, show of how damaged UFO is / how close it is to crashing / evaporating in the dogfight dialog. This could be done by making the UFO glow yellow / orange / red (instead of always green) after hits.
* The indicator would enable players to decide on whether to keep on pounding away at the battleship or send his interceptor home.

# In UFO Skyrangers rearm after missions, which seem odd as they have no weapon mounts. Perhaps restocking equipment is a better description?
* The message may confuse players, making them think that there are weapon mounts that they can not figure out how to use. Better to leave no doubt.

# Enable players to change craft names in "equip craft" screen.
* Way cooler to order around "Firefox" and "Serenity" than "Interceptor-1"!

# Let alien craft info dialogs show what kind of terrain they are on when grounded, in clamps after the "altitude" indication (which could read "GROUND (FOREST)" in such scenarios).
* Providing players with more information for decision-making is a nice thing to do.