Controls explained

Now about the movement/look controls. There is some confusion there. The way they work at the moment is like this:

  • When you touch the move/look panels, the “virtual joystick” becomes centered on the touch position, wherever it falls within the panel. At this point you will not get any movement yet, the joystick is at “zero” position.
  • When you move your finger, the virtual joystick moves in that direction. You can move it as far as you wish, even outside of the move/look panels and into the screen, and it will keep tracking. The panels are there only as starting points – the first touch must fall within them.
  • Move panel works differently from Look panel. Move panel only requires that you move your finger a little and keep it there, and you will keep walking. Like a thumbstick on a gamepad. The farther you move the finger, the faster you will be going. If you move your finger far enough to reach the maximum speed, the (invisible) center point of the joystick will start moving, to keep behind your finger at the maximum speed distance. So if you want to slow down, you don’t have to move your finger all the way back to the original touch point. Only a little is enough, because “zero point” is always not too far behind your finger.
  • Look panel simply requires that you constantly move your finger to keep rotating.

There are 2 options at the moment where you can change the controls behavior: one is to flip vertical axis of the look panel (so that moving down will pan your head up). The other is to make horizontal axis of the move panel to rotate you, not move sideways. Both are off by default. What needs adding are sensitivity settings.

I know, this is probably even more confusing now :-(

Playing a first person game on a 3.7″ screen, of which half is covered with your fingers is going to be fiddly. You will get used to it. I did. Maybe next year we will get Windows 8 tablets.

13 Comments

  1. IM0001
    Posted November 18, 2011 at 00:29 | Permalink | Reply

    The controles were just fine for a touchscreen device. The one thing that might make it a little easier and less screen intrusive, is to instead of blocking off the entire edge with a border, make a smaller possibly transparent border that is more circular to give people a more natural center to place their thumbs to get that “zero” point.

    Also give the game Square Off a shot and see how the visual indicator of controls appears onscreen when you do make contact and then have the variable thumbsticks show off of the center where you first pressed, that is the game with the best controls IMO so far. Yours don’t really need any tweeking, just for the newbs, a little visual guidance to make things feel more natural might help. :)

  2. TGZRyo
    Posted November 18, 2011 at 01:03 | Permalink | Reply

    The controls are great after I got used to them. Can you list the available tools, etc. we can make and how?

  3. Antilliteracy
    Posted November 18, 2011 at 01:13 | Permalink | Reply

    I second what TGZRyo said, we need a list of what we have and how to get it. I think what would be best is to make the recipes the same as Minecraft, because after all this game does cater to Minecraft’s fans, fans who already know how to make everything and would probably find it more convenient to not have to learn recipes again. The game is great so far! I love it, I can’t wait to see the future of it!

  4. D
    Posted November 18, 2011 at 04:12 | Permalink | Reply

    Is it possible to at least know how to create a light source?

    • Posted November 18, 2011 at 10:32 | Permalink | Reply

      If you place a piece of coal on top of a plank you get a crude lamp. Due to small light propagation distance in the first release it is not exceedingly powerful though. Rest assured that lighting is improved already, and will be out with the first update.

      • Posted November 18, 2011 at 15:08 | Permalink | Reply

        the crude lamp has com in handy for me, I have embedded them in the walls of my cave system to light the stairwells and such :)

  5. Marcus
    Posted November 18, 2011 at 11:49 | Permalink | Reply

    If you want someone for german translation, just ask ;) If you have plans to make the game multilingual for menue/settings.

  6. Posted November 18, 2011 at 16:05 | Permalink | Reply

    Something just came to my mind… Will the updates be able to integrate into pre-existing worlds? I have dumped a lot of time into building my castle, and my rock-mine is very deep. I have put so much time and effort into my world, I will be very sad if I have to scrap it and do it all over.

    • Posted November 18, 2011 at 18:24 | Permalink | Reply

      Of course I will try to not destroy your creations as far as possible :-) The first update will almost certainly work with already existing worlds. I cannot promise this will be the case for all updates ever, but breakages should be very infrequent.

  7. mcwillard
    Posted November 18, 2011 at 18:12 | Permalink | Reply

    I can’t figure out coal.. am I just missing something? Never played minecraft, but enjoying this very much

    • Posted November 18, 2011 at 20:50 | Permalink | Reply

      you have to find it. it looks like rock with some black marbled in it. took me a while to find a good amount

  8. Posted November 18, 2011 at 22:16 | Permalink | Reply

    Just started a new world so I could build close to the Starting Point since I cant respawn in my castle, and found a HUGE error with water. Along the beach line, the water missed a gap against the sand, I fell through the gap, and waaay down into the underwater cave that was there. The water blocks are just floating in a thin line, not at all conforming to their properties. There is a huge underground cave that should be filled wit hwater but isnt.

  9. Andrew
    Posted November 21, 2011 at 20:31 | Permalink | Reply

    Hey Kaalus,

    I have a suggestion for the “look” controls. Instead of having a dedicated region on the screen for handling “look” input, I think it would be easier to use if you made the entire screen pan-able with your finger. Swiping right, rotates right; swiping left, rotates left, etc. If you’ve played N.O.V.A. or other mobile FPS games, they take a similar approach. You could then make the current “look” region a “jump” button. Doing this would allow your approach to make more sense in having the “look” movement behave in a non-joystick manner. People understand panning/rotating better when it’s applied to the whole screen rather than a tiny region. You could also put in joystick controls later if you wish. Thanks for the great game! Keep it up! :D

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