Author Topic: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?  (Read 306 times)

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Offline namida

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[DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« on: October 13, 2020, 05:29:35 am »
I have locked this topic and the others to keep all further discussion in one place - the V12.10.0-RC release topic.



As well as some other recent changes, this video does a good job of showing the current state of the title screen: https://youtu.be/J1ztE2pamKs

I am well aware that a bit more work is needed on the graphics themself, especially re: panels. These are not intended as final permanent graphics, they're placeholders for while I was working on the functionality / sizing / positioning. With that being said, feel free to put forward offers to make them, and/or suggestions on what would work for them.

Still up for discussion is the one row vs two rows discussion. I put up a poll in the main menu overhaul topic, this was before I created this topic and a few people had voted so I decided to leave it where it was.

One thing not shown in this video relates to the rank panel. The "Step __" / "Rank graphic not found" placeholder has been done away with, and instead, if a rank graphic is not present for a rank, its name will be displayed on the rank panel using the menu font (likely scaled down to fit).

That aside, any other input relating to the title screen - fire away.

Remaining todos:
- (Currently none)
« Last Edit: October 19, 2020, 02:00:15 am by namida »

Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2020, 09:48:37 am »
I'm a little torn on this "one line vs. two lines" thing.

- The nostalgia factor would be greater for me with all the menu signs in one line - I used to play Lemmings predominantly on Mac in my childhood, until i discovered the Atari version, which included an additional menu sign (2 player mode), but they were still all in one line.
- I also had some contact with the DOS version back then; I liked that some of my favourite tracks came earlier in the game with the DOS music rotation. Also, everything was larger, filling up more of the screen. I somehow remember most of the tileset graphics as darker than they are now in NeoLemmix, though. But anyways, thanks to the DOS version, of course I also remember the two-line menu screen.
- My father was (and is) an avid Mac user, so he used to trash-talk the DOS version of Lemmings a lot. It did come with quite a few downsides, admittedly, such as no fast forward and no option of selecting skills in pause mode. Also, the sounds used for music and in-game sounds were much more muffled than on Mac. The Atari instrumentation I remembered as on-par with Mac; I was quite shocked to hear how terrible some of those Atari tunes sounded when I listened to them again recently. :lem-mindblown:

In NeoLemmix, I'm very much used to the two-lines screen now, so changing it up would feel weird. Also, NeoLemmix graphics are taken from the DOS version (even though, as I said above, I remember many of the DOS tiles as darker). The Mac version also always had the green background, not the red-brown one which is currently the default.

In short: If everything else in NeoLemmix looks like in the DOS version (at least by default), I think the default menu should also continue to look like the DOS version, i.e. two lines.

Of course, for some cases, having them all in one line would be nice - not just for emulating Lemmings on Mac or Atari, but e.g. also for emulating Lemmings 3D (as I'm going to do with "Lemmings, Drugs, and Rock 'n Roll"), where the signs are also all in one line.



I guess you can already see it coming, but... any way to make the menu design optional? ;) Like something you can switch in the settings menu, e.g. between "Mac view" and "DOS view"?

We've already had features for switching between Mac-style and other music rotations - and music rotation even became completely customisable in the end. Of course, that's easier to do with something that can be arranged in a list, like music tracks and levels.
My packs so far:
Lemmings World Tour (New & Old Formats), my music-themed flagship pack, 320 levels - Let's Played by Colorful Arty
Paralems (Old Formats), a more flavour-driven one, 150 levels
Pit Lems (Old Formats), a more puzzly one, 100 levels - Let's Played by nin10doadict
Lemmicks, a pack for (very old) NeoLemmix 1.43 full of gimmicks, 170 levels

Offline IchoTolot

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2020, 02:15:50 pm »
I completely missed that poll. :XD:   Another vote for 2 rows then. :P

In the end a menu will always be a discussion with no end. Different people, different opinions and tastes.

I highly vote for no further big changes at some point, exept if there are huge flaws to fix. Otherwise something like this will just go on forever. At some point it needs to settle and folks can still customise due to the nature of the program anyway.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2020, 06:37:41 pm »
Quote
I highly vote for no further big changes at some point, exept if there are huge flaws to fix. Otherwise something like this will just go on forever. At some point it needs to settle and folks can still customise due to the nature of the program anyway.

Sure, but there's three things that could come up:
- New ideas. We'll reach a point in time where we're no longer looking at these, but for now, they're welcome - that doesn't mean they will get implemented, but they can at least be considered.
- Reminding of old ideas that I was overlooked. I already found one that I'd like to implement while going over the main topic again. (Making the scroller lemmings clickable to manually advance / rewind the scroller texts - though I might add this in a later update.)
- Ideas that have been rejected already. Unless there's been a huge change in support for them (and lack of support was why they were rejected in the first place), these will likely be given a gentle "this is not happening" reminder and won't come up again - if they do, I'll likely just ignore them altogether at that point.
« Last Edit: October 13, 2020, 06:48:51 pm by namida »

Offline IchoTolot

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2020, 07:16:39 pm »
Yes, those things are can be useful. I am more referring to huge overhauls here.

The scroller lemmings idea sound excellent as well! :thumbsup:

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #5 on: October 13, 2020, 08:31:41 pm »
Alright, so I've done a nicer resize on the menu signs now. This was done with a custom-written upscale code (basically - a normal nearest-neighbour resize, then any vertical sequence of pixels following a "solid, nonsolid, nonsolid, solid" pattern were filled in such that one of the nonsolids took on the color of the neighbouring solid, with "which one?" depending on certian colors having priority over others, or if it was the same color in both solid pixels, the one closer to the vertical center of the image would be filled in), then further modifications by hand. The labels were not included in the upscale, instead being kept as-is and just manually re-positioned on the panels.

This is the limit of how much work I'm willing to myself put into the graphics for these panels. However, I am very open to better replacements if the community is willing to provide them. In case it's useful for such, I've attached the current graphic files, as well as a file containing the vertically-resized panels without labels on them.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2020, 09:13:06 pm »
So, "two lines, spaced" (ie: the layout in the above screenshot) seems to be a clear winner on the layout poll.

Unless there's any further input, that leaves just:
- I need to implement the "click the scroller lemmings to move the text" feature
- Better panel graphics, if any are submitted

Of course, maybe more will come up during the RC phase, but once the above are done it looks like we can close off the title screen discussion for now.

Offline IchoTolot

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2020, 09:58:49 pm »
For new standard panels, we had a suggestion from zanzindorf.

Displayed and attached to this post: https://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=4920.msg85456#msg85456

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2020, 12:48:26 am »
^ Ah yep - I definitely like those, though the rank one cannot be directly used as-is - to properly work with the clickable UI (and in particular the highlight around the elements), the rank sign needs to be split into three graphics (as in the example ones attached to Reply #5) - the panel, and the seperate Up and Down buttons.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2020, 09:44:43 am »
The poll in the other topic has a very clear lead for the two-line spaced layout now, so looks like that's what we'll be going with.

Offline zanzindorf

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2020, 03:11:32 pm »
^ Ah yep - I definitely like those, though the rank one cannot be directly used as-is - to properly work with the clickable UI (and in particular the highlight around the elements), the rank sign needs to be split into three graphics (as in the example ones attached to Reply #5) - the panel, and the seperate Up and Down buttons.

Attached is the rank sign split into three graphics. I think that should work, but let me know if it doesn't.

The smaller buttons aren't cropped because I wasn't entirely sure how to crop them to get them to align properly with the new code. The buttons for your new menu design are 21x16, and mine are 21x12. If that's a problem, let me know and I can rework my buttons to use your size.

Also note that the base rank panel is unchanged from my last upload. I left it this way because it shows where the smaller buttons should be and also retains the drop shadows between the smaller buttons and the rank panel. I figured it would be a problem if the drop shadow was included with the smaller buttons themselves because I assume your outline effect requires a crisp, pixel outline on the source graphic to render properly. Again, let me know if it needs more work.

On a side note: The mouse support features to the new menu look fantastic in the video! The only feedback I have is (more of a question really): does the rank panel itself do anything when clicked? I know the smaller buttons change the difficulty, but does clicking on the panel outside the smaller buttons do anything? If not, having it highlight when the mouse hovers over it may be confusing. Players might try to click the rank panel itself rather than the smaller buttons expecting it to work like the other panels.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2020, 06:12:22 pm »
Quote
The smaller buttons aren't cropped because I wasn't entirely sure how to crop them to get them to align properly with the new code. The buttons for your new menu design are 21x16, and mine are 21x12. If that's a problem, let me know and I can rework my buttons to use your size.

The smaller size is not a problem. All code for clickable elements works based on a center position, not a top-left corner (and this extends to, even though it itself isn't clickable, the rank signs too). Currently, the actual locations to set those center points to is hardcoded - I'm considering making it loaded from a config file in the future but that will probably be a 12.12.X feature. But of course - I can change the hardcoded value, at any rate. :)

Quote
because I assume your outline effect requires a crisp, pixel outline on the source graphic to render properly. Again, let me know if it needs more work.

It should work fine with semitransparent pixels. Obviously, if there's an actual green outline or semi-outline (rather than semitransparent edges), that might not.

The other thing is the question of whether those buttons are far enough apart, that the technical workings of the highlight effect don't cause issues of the border around one, cutting off part of the graphic of the other. At a glance I think they should be fine, but would have to throw them in the engine - which I'll do a bit later today - to check for sure. If there is an overlap issue, an alternate way around this is to reduce the radius of the highlight - the rank buttons already have a smaller radius than other menu elements do.

Quote
The only feedback I have is (more of a question really): does the rank panel itself do anything when clicked?

Yes, it has the same effect as clicking the Up button on the rank panel.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2020, 07:40:05 pm »
Reconstructing the panel-without-buttons graphic from the Layers files in your ZIP, and adding a semitransparent outline myself on the buttons, I produced the following. The "Down" button had to be moved down one pixel to work. Some minor code tweaks were also needed to avoid the buttons highlights' (or rather, the "make sure highlight isn't drawn when it shouldn't be") interfering with each other.

The files that produce this result also attached, as is an overall menu screenshot.

Offline zanzindorf

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] Further changes to title screen?
« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2020, 09:37:57 pm »
Looks great :thumbsup: The spacing and layout look really good to me, and I really like the outline effect.

Yes, it has the same effect as clicking the Up button on the rank panel.

Nice, that makes sense.