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Minimap Colours

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  • 1 year later...

The outlines around units/building would be great. Especially for those times where team colour could potentially blend into the background (like green team blending with grass terrain).

The colours choosen in the original post are generally good, with the exception of stone - it's actually harder to spot now that the trees have been desaturated.

A couple of suggestions:

- Allow the player to toggle a full screen version of the map that could include more pixel icons (I would suggest having one for stone and metal, civ centers, wonders, and maybe discovered treasures/relics?).

- In AoE2 you could toggle between 3 types of maps. Can't remember what these were exactly, but I would recommend: Resources only; Teams only; All.

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It was all, resource only and military only. Team only doesn't make much sense to me.

As a player, I'd want the minimap to tell me a small set of very specific things:
  • Where resources are. Specifically, stone mines and metal mines. Trees and animals are very low priority, as far as the minimap goes, since they are generally ubiquitous, so trees and animal colors can be very muted for all I care as a player, but mines must stand out.
  • Where units and buildings are. These have to be decisively shown and very distinguishable from other things on the minimap. That's why I like the black outlines in the Starcraft minimap.
  • Pathing obstacles. Some way to distinguish cliffs would be nice. Right now the minimap does not distinguish the pathability of map tiles. A mountain is roughly the same color as the surrounding desert because their texture colors are similar. This should change.

What I don't care about is the specific color of the grass terrains or whatever. One flat color should suffice in order to not muddle the presentation. So, perhaps the "average" color of the textures can be used to represent relatively flat passable terrain instead of what's currently being done. Or one average color for all passable terrain from the same biome folder.

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Different modes doesn't sound as useful as what Mythos outlined. Except the terrain texture could be useful in showing what part of the map the player is viewing (since most are circular and can be rotated arbitrarily). I like the idea of pathing obstacles being highlighted. That could be done by indicating edges between pathing classes.

For terrain we could do some transforms of the texture colors to restrict them to a limited band of HSL as Philip described. Terrain would be the most "faded" colors since it's in the background and generally less important than resources and entities. It wouldn't matter what colors because they would be distinct bands of intensity, but mostly they should be browns and greens. I think forests are useful to see, to some extent, especially if we change forest pathing behavior so they present more of an obstacle. But individual trees and animals are not important - individual mines are very important (thus the suggestion to use pixel art).

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  • 3 months later...

Resurrecting a dead thread to address backlog ticket 763:


Summarizing the above points and some others from IRC we have the following suggestions:

  • 1) Fix the colours to be more unique
    • Should be implemented regardless of chosen solution
    • Further contrast can be achieved by outlining dots with black (see screenshot above of starcraft minimap)

    [*]2) Key resources to have their own icon, along with major buildings (civic centres).

    [*]3) Map filters like in Aoe2, buttons adjacent the minimap to toggle modes and data displayed.

    • Resource specific filters permanently visible
    • Tooltip menu to enable disable
    • Rightclick menu to enable disable, or scroll to scroll through modes whilst mouse is over minimap

    [*]4) Minimap zooming in and out (scroll mouse action) to increase minimap resolution.

    • Icon size should scale or pop in/out with zoom level of minimap (if icons are implemented).

Additional features for multiplayer: Map pinging and drawing?

I'd like to rekindle the design discussion for this ticket, I'm thinking of having a crack at implementation as a way to familiarize myself with the project. I'm a professional embedded systems programmer and hobbyist game programmer...Been lurking in the shadows a long time all the way back to SCNPunk and the Rome Total Conversion era... :)

So folks, filters? Zooming? Black and white minimap? What'll it be?

Edited by Silkjc
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I don't know if this is what you have in mind, but while you're at it:

If you look at a video like the one below, you will see that when units come under attack, a short animation is played over the minimap to attract the player's attention to the location of the attack, even if they are currently looking somewhere else on the screen. In this case (AoE3), it appears to be a cross-hair expanding in size, then receding again, but different games use different animations.

We currently have a WIP patch for attack notification here, which IMO works really well, but it does lack this touch of "guiding" the player's eyes towards the point on the minimap where action is occuring. You currently will sometimes need to scan through the many dots on the minimap to see which ones are blinking, which can be distracting in the midst of battle.

I don't know how easy it would be to implement such an animation, but maybe it is something you could consider.

Edited by zoot
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Empire Earth 1 also had a warning on the map along with a sound.

I would kind of like that only certain buildings warn you (outposts and watchtowers), so the game get's a bit added depth.

Players could then try to sneak into bases. (enemy always showing on the minimap should not be changed)

Not sure if it works that good in theory and how do-able it is. Some people get frustrated when they are attacked without knowing, I thought it was funny when I was bussy fighting a opponent and found out half of my population was massacred by the other opponent.

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