Good performance now, some suggestions

Take command of air and naval assets from post-WW2 to the near future in tactical and operational scale, complete with historical and hypothetical scenarios and an integrated scenario editor.

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mcoyote
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Sep 01, 2006 5:20 pm

Good performance now, some suggestions

Post by mcoyote »

I tried CMANO on another machine of similar specs to the one I was experiencing trouble and, for whatever reason, it works better.

Since that's over with, I've made it through a few, small scenarios and had some thoughts.

Map:

- A useful feature of the Harpoon series was being able to throw up multiple map views to keep an eye on (e.g.) specific areas or track certain units. This would be handy for CMANO for the same reasons.
- I'd like to be able to disable all terrain textures (solid-color background, preferably black). For the closer engagements there isn't enough detail for it to be useful and at least the lighter areas can obscure the symbology.

Messages:

- It's great I can filter the message log as a standalone window and toggle classes of messages, but it would be even better to do that with more than one message window so I could segregate messages in different areas of the screen, a different monitor, etc.
- Similarly, the message log and some of the other tables (e.g., air ops) could stand to have columns (since they're mostly detail, perhaps just time, unit, severity, and text) and row lines or alternating row backgrounds. Much easier to work across at a glance.
- I got to thinking messages could stand to be more terse, but I think what would be more useful is some selective detail. E.g., for a detail message announcing a weapon attack, leave the visible text to "X is attacking Y with <one meaningful statistic>" with the extra stuff in hovertext or -- if the underlying table supports it and it's not too performance intensive -- an expandable row. Plus, at least in hoverte details may be bulleted or otherwise organised for easy parsing.

Other:

- I don't think air ops benefit from being tree-based, as there's only one level of hierarchy (class->unit) and it's disorienting to navigate when the unit list is long. I'd go for a master-detail flow of some kind, where (e.g.) a class selected in one pane (or chosen with a drop-down, or whatever) filled a second with its units. One could say the same about the magazines and probably other, such views.
- A little more, incidental audio feedback would be nice. The launch/explosion sounds are ok, but audio for clicks, zooms, and other things would both add atmosphere and deliver another, useful cue as to whether the software is doing something the user wants.
- Once I'm done laying out all those bits and pieces (especially if extra log or map windows show up), it'd be great to save the layout for future use.
- The main, map context menu (mouse right-click) shows items such as "Boat Docking Ops" and "Magazines" whether or not they apply to the unit selected. When they do not apply, they appear to do nothing which is confusing should you click on one by accident when intending to click on another (makes you wonder if the software is listening). Between removing the inapplicable entries or graying them out, I think graying them out would both solve this issue while not forcing the player to reconsider the mix/order of items every time they click.
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