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Trapper Zoid

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Just a quick poll of your opinion on this, as the nature of the gameplay will depend on this...

I'm planning on making my game in an arcadey style, and so I'll be adding support for gamepads (as IMO that will be the best interface for this tyoe of game). This means I have to design for digital directional input and some number of buttons. The question is: given all the different types of joysticks and gamepads out there, how many buttons should I assume the player has under their fingers? At least six? Four? Maybe only two?

What do you think?
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I was somewhat hoping to get away with four, as that can give me "Attack/Action", "Block/Dodge", "Inventory" and one button spare for a secondary attack, but I can probably squeeze the game down to two. That way I can also design the game to play purely with the mouse [wink].

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All the pads I've seen have at least four buttons. I have some 20-button, dual analogue Wingman monster.

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That was my impression too; doing a Google Image search on "gamepad" shows most gamepads having at least four buttons (except for the original Atari ones, I guess).

Thinking about the problem, I guess if I was making this a multiplayer game on a single PC, then having two buttons might be best (so I could get two players on the keyboard, one on the mouse, and one on the gamepad), however that might be a bit much for this first project (plus it's a lot harder to test). However for a single player game, I'll need the extra buttons to make the game interesting.

Since I've got an original Gravis Gamepad with four buttons lying around, it might be best to design the game around that (and the keyboard equivalent for those without gamepads). However I'll keep in mind a possible extention to multiplayer, and think if the game would play better only using two buttons.

This whole post might seem a little bit premature, since I haven't really figured out the scope of the game yet, but I think figuring out the user interface requirements first is important (so I don't end up with a design that requires twelve fingers to play properly [grin]).

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The smallest you can get away with. No useless extra functionality or stuff just tacked on to use an unused button please!

4 is probably a pretty safe number though.

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Four is a safe level for gamepads - for joysticks, assume no more than 2.

I have a cheap, ancient 2-button gamepad. I've never yet seen a game that was playable with only 2 gamepad buttons (at least, not a game I'd care to play). So gamepad-wise, 2 may be too cramped.

Joysticks frequently have only 2 buttons, though, so be careful with that one.


And be sure to make controls remappable [wink]

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Quote:
The smallest you can get away with. No useless extra functionality or stuff just tacked on to use an unused button please!

And I had my heart set on dedicating a button to "Chicken Dance" too [wink].

Quote:
And be sure to make controls remappable

This one's definitely a given.

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