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June 18, 2019

UI/UX Tweaks

UI/UX Tweaks

This post will look at few UI/UX tweaks available on my maps.

SlIM UI

This is my take on custom user interface – or more specifically ingame console. I wanted to create a minimalistic UI that occupies less amount of screen space, while keeping positions of UI elements mostly the same.

Menu, social and chat buttons were moved next to the minimap and inline with minimap buttons to save space and make it more tidy. Control groups were moved from the top of the info panel to its sides (see interactive UI comparison).

Heroes
Slim UI with Han and Horner

You can switch between standard and slim UI with the -slim command.

Interactive UI comparison

There are few things that I still like about the standard UI over my Slim UI. Possibly better performance by not rendering battlefield under the console, and less busy bottom side of the screen.

Heroes
Slim UI with Artanis

Score screen

The score screen is visible when the mission is over. Including additional information (map, mutators, players and masteries) means that you can easily share a single screenshot with all important information.

I also added some additional stats that are visible if you hover over player's name (e.g. units killed, resources mined, energy used, commander specific stats, etc). But those are secondary, and it's not necessary to have them onscreen directly.
Score
Custom after-game statistics

Nydus Worms & Heroic units

Sometimes you want to unload just Kerrigan or other hero units from a Nydus Worm. Unfortunately, heroic units won't be displayed in the first tab of Nydus Worm preferentially, and you would have to search in many tabs of the Nydus Worm.

Here Nydus Worms have an additional button for unloading only heroic units. It might not be as elegant as having heroic units in the first tab, but it's actually more practical and lets you use hotkeys to unload your heroes. (-unload)

Dedicated button for unloading heroic units from Nydus Worms

Bile Launcher targeting

Bile Launchers are interesting defensive structures that will continue to fire at targeted location. Unfortunately, setting up zones for multiple Bile Launchers is difficult to do quickly. If you click once, every single of Bile Launchers in range will target selected location.

I changed how the ability works and added a short cooldown. With smart cast, one click orders a single Bile Launcher to target selected location; and a short cooldown prevents you from ordering the same Bile Launcher again with the next click (see video). (-bile)

First current bombardment ability, improved version after that

Commander–Select screen reskin

This is reskin of default UI for commander select. I tried to make it more like the selection screen we see in menus. It was fun changing it and learning how various cutscenes work.

Heroes
Old simple commander-select screen
New commander-select screen
New commander-select screen in action

Top bar notifications

Here the goal was to make something that enables players to let their ally know when a calldown is ready. This is a common feature in MOBA games usually done with Alt+Left-click. Here I had to use several workarounds, and I eventually ended up with Right-click instead.

Right-clicking on top-bar ability buttons shows notification to both players about the ability—its availability, charges, or remaining cooldown.

It's important that you have to actively let your ally know when the ability is ready. This notification doesn't just announce that an ability is ready, more importantly, it tells your ally you are prepared to use the ability as well.

Top bar notifications

TYCHUS' Squad Reordering

Unless you have created a custom hotkey setup for all outlaws, any change to your standard outlaw order will hinder your "muscle memory" by switching hotkeys for outlaw abilities. This discourages using different outlaws or getting them in a different order, which is a major part of Tychus' design.

This is a simple UI addition lets you switch the order of outlaws and with that their ability hotkeys. (-tychui)

Tychus' UI in action

Memes

This is something I have wanted in-game since Wings of Liberty. One team has glorious Troll faces, while the other team has Pepes. Pepes will become happy when selected. Troll faces will change to "LUL" when a unit gets a kill. "Mother of God" face is used when a nuclear missile is launched. (-memes)

This is also available as an extension mod for custom games.

Heroes
Troll faces
FeelGoodMan & FeelsBadMan

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