Indicate material needs on the screen

Bug #536437 reported by fabguy on 2005-12-01
This bug affects 2 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone

Bug Description

I've been playing with debug messages and noticed this:

MO(1388): soldier: Need more axe for creation
MO(1388): lumberjack: Need more axe for creation

COuld these messages, or likewise empty stocks be
indicated on the screen? Maybe have the icon appear on
the outer most right side of the screen, one beneath
the other.

This would indicate the need for certain resources more
adequatly. It would notify the user, instead of hiding
that info in the building screens.

Tags: ui Edit Tag help
nobody (nobody-users) wrote :

Logged In: NO

Or if a building is under construction, you could have
little icons representing which materials are needed for
completion (much like the ones in the window when you click
on it, just smaller)

orionrobots (orionrobots) wrote :

Logged In: YES
Originator: NO

This could be done at least by having it tied to the hover action on a building, or a toggle to show requirements.

SirVer (sirver) wrote :

I agree that this must be inidicated in some ways. Maybe a message to the user "Economy needs a lumberjack, but no axes are available" could be done.

Changed in widelands:
status: New → Confirmed
importance: Undecided → Wishlist
tags: added: ui
SirVer (sirver) wrote :

Setting to incomplete for bug sweeping.

Changed in widelands:
status: Confirmed → Incomplete
Hans Joachim Desserud (hjd) wrote :

(Especially considering comment #3): Is this separate from the warnings/complaints from buildings when they don't have the neccessary wares to produce something?

Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

[Expired for widelands because there has been no activity for 60 days.]

Changed in widelands:
status: Incomplete → Expired
SirVer (sirver) wrote :

I think there is a valuable proposition here. Thinks that I think about:

1) If the information is surfaced globally (i.e. through a message to the user) will this make things too easy for the player? Figuring out the flaws of your economy is part of the game.

2) displaying it on the building that does not get a worker is probably save - but somehow the information feels out of place there (ie. it does not belong there from a relational point of view, but if the user looks why no worker is in the building, she is probably interested in exactly this information right then).

Changed in widelands:
status: Expired → Incomplete
wl-zocker (wl-zocker) wrote :

I like the idea. It spares some clicking and searching because the important information is directly displayed. This might be interesting especially for newcomers who have not yet fully understood the connections inside the game.
I imagine little icons (explanation in the tutorial!) instead of text because it takes less space. They should be shown when a building has a request that currently cannot be fulfilled. There are these cases:
1) A building does not get a worker (because of lacking tools or experience). Possible icons are:
   a) A man for general worker matters.
   b) A man for missing tools or a man with a star [1] for missing experienced workers.
   c) A man with his tool(s) or a man with a star as above.
2) A construction site does not get a material. Show all of the missing ones. I think we can use the menu icons (they are big enough), but without the rectangular box (I do not know how they are saved in the files).
3) A production building does not get a needed ware. I am unsure whether this case should show an icon, because that can be quite a lot.

All the icons should only be shown while the request is open. When the worker/ware is on the way, there is acutally no problem.

[1] I thought about the stars used in the menu icons to keep it consistent. Though I do not think that the menu icons would look good outside of the menus.

Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

[Expired for widelands because there has been no activity for 60 days.]

Changed in widelands:
status: Incomplete → Expired
SirVer (sirver) on 2014-07-14
Changed in widelands:
status: Expired → Confirmed
GunChleoc (gunchleoc) wrote :

The information for 2) and 3) is displayed on the buldings themselves, but not the information for 1) (except for the fact that a worker is missing)

For 1): How about a mouseover for everything like we have in the production program? I finally managed to fix the phrasings for those, so we could add a simliar tooltip for missing workers. Maybe we could add a hover text with a reason:

- Can't start mining because we have no master miner yet
- Can't start mining because there is no master miner available
- Can't start mining because the worker needs the following tool: 'pickaxe'

For a global display, we would need very short messages. It should also be clickable, so the user will be able to find the building that is complaining. Maybe we could also delay these as we recently did for the "Out of resources" messages, otherwise it could get very busy.

I'm thinking we could format the messages like this:

"<building icon> needs <ware icon/worker icon/soldier icon>"

If the worker is missing because of experience, show a worker icon. If the tool to recruit the worker is missing, show the tool icon. If a militarysite can't get occupied, show a soldier icon.

The building icon should be the clickable element, or the whole message.

SirVer (sirver) wrote :

I am against making this information publicly available. widelands is about figuring out the problems in your economy (actually anticipating it). It you get all the information on a silver platter, the game stops making sense (i.e. if you are only reacting to input instead of actively looking for problems and solutions).

I think it is fine to surface this information in the buildings - i.e. locally. I do not think more hover text is good (there is too much text already). Instead I suggest a pictogram in the current cencus string. This one is rendered using the new renderer already, so it will just be an <img> tag in the text. Opening the building window could surface a description of the pictograms.

GunChleoc (gunchleoc) wrote :

We already have all the info there in the s/c strings or oher texts except for the reason why a worker is missing. Now the question is: do we really need that info, if we want the players to figure out stuff themselves? Opening the building window will show which level of worker is missing and thwther one is already on his way. The player can deduct everything from there.

Martin Doucha (next-ghost) wrote :

I have a suggestion that solves this problem: Add another tab to the Ware Statistics window which would show the global stock minus global demand (that is, the total storage capacity of buildings that consume the given ware, respecting storage limits set by player for each building, and of course the demand for tools and weapons generated by vacant worker and soldier slots).

The Economy Health tab is nearly useless because once you burn through the initial stock, the graph will settle near zero even though the demand for given stock is several times larger than supply.

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