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loom_weaver

[UI] Message Panel Positioning

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I'm creating an RPG rogue-like that has a main graphical panel that shows the terrain, monsters, etc.

Some messages are displayed on the graphical panel e.g. damage amounts that float upwards and fade WoW-style. The main graphical panel takes up about 1/6th of the screen space. Think 600 pixels square on an average 17" display.

In conjunction with these is the verbose message for each event that is written into a separate message panel. It might read something like:

The evil wizard casts a spell...
Creature X is burned for 85 pts of damage.
Creature X is dead!
Creature Y is burned for 18 pts of damage.
...


There are potentialy a lot of messages (perhaps dozens in a single combat round with many participants) and they scroll past pretty quick.

Where would you put this message panel in relation to the main graphical panel and why?

Any preferences on size, usage, or other UI feedback pertaining to this topic?

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It might be easier if we had a screenshot.

Something you could try is grouping effects on a single line. That wizard spell could read "The evil wizard casts a spell and burns Creature X for 85 damage, Creature Y for 18 damage, etc" instead of creating separate lines. That could fix your scrolling issue.

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It's hard for me to say without knowing where you have everything else... but (since you mentioned WoW) if most of your interface is similar to WoW, then I'd recommend also putting yours in the bottom left as Blizzard did. It will be familiar to players, and it feels the most out of the way when it is there. You can also include an option to close the box if you feel that no matter where you put it, it will look bad. Feel free to show an image of where everything is, or give a detailed description and I can give a more specific response. Good luck!

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You could also add some filters, for example only show when something dies, or if someone does a critical hit... you dont need to know if someone deals 1 damage to a chicken, killing it, while attacking a army of evil chickens (For that you could do something like Player A Kills 8999 chickens using nuke).

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