Thursday, February 19, 2009

Putting an intersmile on the your interface

So as you may be able to tell from my clever title, I've spent a good deal of this week nailing down the interface.  Fortunately, at this point, we're ready to go with a first game model.  I've done about 30 sketches for different parts of the interface and made a quick photoshop mockup.  We're actually going to try and go for a minimalist interface.  Unfortunately, we don't anticipate beautiful graphics (at least not at version 1), so there may not be a ton to look at with this minimal interface, but it should at least give you a nice big playing area.  So how are we doing this?
  • Optimized quick creator.  All of the cells you create in this game can be stored in your "deck".  Some of the cells you want to create the most can also be accessed from a quick creator menu.  We've made a quick creator menu that allows you to make some of these cells without pulling up another large menu, and also navigate between which type of cell to create in an efficient way that has a neat feature from the iPhone interface.
  • Hideable menu.  The cell design menu, which will take up a huge chunk of the screen when expanded, will normally be contracted.
  • Replacing buttons with mouse commands.  Right-click, click and drag and double-click will all be used in some controls.  This will allow for a way less cluttered interface, and perhaps a much faster way of designing cells.
  • No mini-map.  Yet.  Perhaps.  We'll see.

In other news, our overhaul of the game design document has been completed, and I'm focusing entirely on interface.  I hope to get a working version out of photoshop in the next few meetings.  Right now, Nik is working on our cell creator interface, Andrew is taking care of the cell creator backend, and Roberto is doing some icon work.  We had some passerby's try to identify the icons in the game, which was probably one of the most exciting points of the meeting tonight.  Anyhow, that sums it up for now.

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