Insight Spectator Mod

DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
edited August 2012 in Modding
Version DGH
Insight Spectator Mod

This mod is now officially implemented into NS2. Huze is still working on it for UWE.

image

This mod is based on Skycam, which is/was a mod made by Dushan from UWE. Skycam gives you a top down view of the map in spectator mode, just like the commander view.
This modified version, created by myself and Huze, aims at providing you with additional information about the current game's status to make live casting even easier and more exciting for the viewers.


Download & Instructions

Download @ DuplexGaming

Installation instructions and instructions for use are in the readme file.
Here's an online version of the installation instructions with pictures: http://ns2comp.herokuapp.com/insight
And here's installation instructions for servers: http://ns2comp.herokuapp.com/insight/server (please note that the first and last step can differ depending on how you setup your server)

You can watch our progress and currently planned features on our Git Issues Tracker.

WARNING: Unfortunately, the server and all clients on it need to have the mod installed in order to be able to play. I cannot change this.

Current Limitations
  1. All building upgrades don't provide a "researching" state, only a "researched" state. Hence, all Alien upgrades, Advanced Armory and ARC Robotics Factory upgrades only appear after being finished. Augmentation currently doesn't appear at all. Blame Brian. :P
  2. I cannot query research percentage, so research bars might lag behind in some rare cases.
  3. All values can be up to two seconds late. This is not really a limitation but rather a feature to reduce server and client stress.

All credits and my eternal gratitude for the original Skycam (and of course NS2!) go to Dushan Leska from Unknown Worlds Entertainment (dushan@unknownworlds.com).
Post edited by Unknown User on
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Comments

  • ArkantiArkanti pub baddie Join Date: 2011-07-22 Member: 111781Posts: 694Members, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    Great work Dghelneshi, this should make the game a lot easier to follow for both casters and the people at home watching!

    Here's an in game example with the first cast using this system:

    As a bonus, the above match also features some really slick teamwork and tactics.
    Mr. Arkanti
    noGG Arkanti
    nova | Arkanti
    Pub Baddie

    Co_Summit - A remix of Summit's unique areas to mould it into a better Combat mod experience. I also broke all the textures. Mad skills yo.
    WildGrass Games - I make video games.
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    In this game, we failed a bit to actually use the info provided (e.g. didn't see robotics). We got better after a while though. I should implement some kind of flash for a new upgrade appearing.

    Also, please note that this was on a development build, so you will see a few script errors in the console and some other things not on the "current limitations" list. If anyone still has this build, please download the new release version!
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • ScardyBobScardyBob ScardyBob Join Date: 2009-11-25 Member: 69528Posts: 4,983Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow mod
    edited April 2012
    Can you change the 'Lost' cost from the TRes lost from just extractors to TRes lost from all destroyed structures? I think that would be more valuable and less confusing.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    Yes, I'm gonna change that if I can. It's gonna take some work and will be pretty inefficient, but I hope it won't bog performance down too much. Unfortunately, I don't have any idea how to check for lost buildings other than to check all entities every tick and then add one to lost buildings if the number of a specific type of entity decreases between ticks. That's a rather dumb way to do it, so if anyone has a better idea, give me a hint! Also, should I include AI units into this?
    Edit: I think doing it like this would cost so much performance that it isn't viable at all. I will definitely need to find another way.

    I also want to make a new display for total TRes available for tech, since that is actually a more important value than pure total TRes. I could subtract all building costs from total TRes for that but I think it's more accurate to just take total TRes minus cost of RTs.

    Another thing I would like to do is include drifter cost into building costs, but it's actually quite tricky since the first two hives give 3 free drifters each.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • HuzeHuze Insightful Join Date: 2003-11-12 Member: 22724Posts: 475Members, NS1 Playtester, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    Hey Dghelneshi, I saw your mod in action during the livestreams today and I was impressed.

    EDIT: We started working together! Screenshots!
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • ScardyBobScardyBob ScardyBob Join Date: 2009-11-25 Member: 69528Posts: 4,983Forum Admins, Forum Moderators, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow mod
    QUOTE (Dghelneshi @ Apr 15 2012, 03:24 PM) »
    Yes, I'm gonna change that if I can. It's gonna take some work and will be pretty inefficient, but I hope it won't bog performance down too much. Unfortunately, I don't have any idea how to check for lost buildings other than to check all entities every tick and then add one to lost buildings if the number of a specific type of entity decreases between ticks. That's a rather dumb way to do it, so if anyone has a better idea, give me a hint! Also, should I include AI units into this?

    So whenever something dies, it pops up a 'NSplayer killed extractor' text. Maybe you could hook into that somehow to check how often it pops up for different structures?
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (ScardyBob @ Apr 16 2012, 03:04 AM) »
    So whenever something dies, it pops up a 'NSplayer killed extractor' text. Maybe you could hook into that somehow to check how often it pops up for different structures?

    Yes, I did that funny hack before. I didn't really want to do it because I am not sure how to save this information reliably and permanently. Using GUIOverhead globals should work, but I am not sure when those globals can be accessed (like, before someone goes into skycam the first time) and when they get destroyed. I have absolutely zero experience with object oriented programming, let alone in Lua.
    Edit: I can't use the same system to save the info that I'm using right now because that one is server-side and the death messages are purely client-side.

    I would also love some feedback on the other questions/ideas in that post.

    @Hii: Thanks for the suggestion, I will definitely look into implementing something like that.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • YuukiYuuki Join Date: 2010-11-20 Member: 75079Posts: 1,731Members
    Don't put too much information, the caster should be the master of the show, the storyteller, not the GUI.

  • MuYeahMuYeah Join Date: 2006-12-26 Member: 59261Posts: 610Members
    That's a really great mod. Nice one! Yuuki is correct, but having the info hidden by default and toggleable would fix it nicely (if that's possible?)
  • MendaspMendasp I touch maps in inappropriate places Valencia, Spain Join Date: 2002-07-05 Member: 884Posts: 3,918Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Gold, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow, Community Dev Team
    edited April 2012
    Perhaps overriding the scoreboard with all that info would be a nice fix? I don't know if you can override the scoreboard, though.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    I'll try to get all of this into the Skycam before this weekend and also provide toggles for some or all of the information. I think having things on their own keys is better than having it on the scoreboard, as the scoreboard blocks the whole screen.
    I might make the upgrade display only appear when pressing a key, but flash an icon on screen for a short time if there is a new upgrade incoming to notify the caster.
    I'm not entirely sure where to put and how to format the resource information, so I'll probably leave it where it is right now until I have a better idea (or someone suggests one).

    Overall, I'll try to keep the rate of updates to a minimum, since many changes can require all clients and the server to update instead of just the spectators.
  • MendaspMendasp I touch maps in inappropriate places Valencia, Spain Join Date: 2002-07-05 Member: 884Posts: 3,918Members, NS1 Playtester, Contributor, Constellation, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Gold, NS2 Map Tester, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Shadow, Community Dev Team
    edited April 2012
    Well, I actually meant removing the scoreboard for the caster and using the player status screen on the sides from Hii's example instead. The scoreboard doesn't show much info for the caster anyways and that way you don't clutter up the screen unless you want to quickly check on the players' status. But maybe we were talking about different things, I don't know :P
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    Ok, so here's a new version for this weekend's casts.
    This is a massive one.

    I've collaborated with Hii/Huze to make the best spectator UI we could manage to do. New features include live player stats on-screen with health/weapons and much more. A screenshot explaining the whole UI will follow soon after this post. We also have a new name for the mod - Insight! In order to make for less cluttering on the screen, the upgrade and player displays are toggleable separately by the number keys 1 and 2 respectively (not all keys work in spectator so I had to make do with these). You won't miss out on upgrades even if you toggle the upgrade display, since they will flash shortly (for about 6sec) when they are done researching.

    Unfortunately, I couldn't get rid of the current limitations yet, some are up to UWE to fix anyway.

    Thanks a lot to Hii for making this happen and also giving the mod a proper name. Could a moderator please rename the thread title? Would be much appreciated. :)

    If you guys catch any last minute bugs before the games this weekend, let us know!
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • WilsonWilson Join Date: 2010-07-26 Member: 72867Posts: 1,397Members
    Nice work. Perhaps you should try and implement basti's layout from here: http://www.unknownworlds.com/ns2/forums/in...=117188&hl= The players up the side of the screen looks a bit clunky and takes up a lot of space.
    In-game name: Wilson

    My Crosshair Pack: LINK
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    Ah, I saw that one before, but forgot about it. Looks a lot more professional. Maybe for the next version. :)
  • TriggermanTriggerman Graphic Artist Join Date: 2004-11-10 Member: 32724Posts: 553Members, WC 2013 - Supporter
    First off I have to say the interface is damn nice, thanks for all the work!
    But my suggestion is that one thing I find lacking on the spectator interface from a Twitch.tv perspective, is that the minimap icons are too low contrast due to the compression. Aliens especially blend into the gray map. I've noticed that once a scan is dropped the icons get a red dot on them and are much easier to see on the stream.
    Could that be looked into perhaps for this mod?
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    Well, I have already made a minimap mod, which can be used alongside this. It makes player icons MUCH brighter than others to make them really stand out and also makes the big map transparent, which might not be ideal for casting though. Transparency can be changed easily in the lua files, though.
  • HuzeHuze Insightful Join Date: 2003-11-12 Member: 22724Posts: 475Members, NS1 Playtester, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    I'm glad you guys like the mod. I'm going to work on making the player frames nicer for the next version

    Here's an idea I had while watching the livestreams today; I just finished putting a prototype in. Players have health bars under their names. Each block represents 10hp. After 300hp (or whatever feels right), I will start showing 1 block per 100hp.

    Let me know what you think.

    image
  • TriggermanTriggerman Graphic Artist Join Date: 2004-11-10 Member: 32724Posts: 553Members, WC 2013 - Supporter
    edited April 2012
    Definitively a good idea Huze, it's well established in other games (e.g. League of Legends) and gives a better view of the outcome of a battle.
    The only problem I could see with this is that aliens move and jump around so much up close that the bars could get on top of each other.

    And for another perspective, Starcraft 2 casters usually turn healthbars off on all units, and instead the casters box-select the units that they want to show the health on for the viewers, since all selected units display the healthbar above them. However, that's a proper RTS with dozens of units clumped together, so I wouldn't worry about that.

    I say implement! :D
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • ArkantiArkanti pub baddie Join Date: 2011-07-22 Member: 111781Posts: 694Members, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    I love how you guys have extended the functionality of Skycam, it definitely helps the viewer experience for filling in the blanks as to what the caster is focussing on at any given time! That looks like a nice feature Huze, I say implement.

    One aesthetic suggestion I have is changing the text colour on the unit display on the left and the tech points on the bottom. Yellow/Orange for the blue marine displays, and blue for the aliens, as the alien side is especially hard to read currently. Also, the Onos icon is super skinny compared to the others, and appears to be a hydralisk at first glance :P

    Mr. Arkanti
    noGG Arkanti
    nova | Arkanti
    Pub Baddie

    Co_Summit - A remix of Summit's unique areas to mould it into a better Combat mod experience. I also broke all the textures. Mad skills yo.
    WildGrass Games - I make video games.
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    edited April 2012
    QUOTE (Arkanti @ Apr 22 2012, 06:25 AM) »
    One aesthetic suggestion I have is changing the text colour on the unit display on the left and the tech points on the bottom. Yellow/Orange for the blue marine displays, and blue for the aliens, as the alien side is especially hard to read currently. Also, the Onos icon is super skinny compared to the others, and appears to be a hydralisk at first glance :P

    Changing the color to the opposite side is the worst you can do usually, it's confusing and it just doesn't look very well if you have too many colors. The problem is not color contrast, but rather brightness contrast. The background color is too bright for white text.

    The onos icon just had wrong texture coordinates, it's fixed in our internal version. We will probably only release weekly builds every friday before the matches, since many changes require the server and all clients to redownload.

    Next build will probably include a few design changes and maybe a total rewrite of parts of the system, hopefully providing for more reliable information, no matter what the situation. I still need/want to actually play b205 though. :P
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • ArkantiArkanti pub baddie Join Date: 2011-07-22 Member: 111781Posts: 694Members, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    QUOTE (Dghelneshi @ Apr 22 2012, 03:54 PM) »
    Changing the color to the opposite side is the worst you can do usually, it's confusing and it just doesn't look very well if you have too many colors. The problem is not color contrast, but rather brightness contrast. The background color is too bright for white text.


    Fair enough, although my colour suggestions were so that there were not too many colours and so that they contrasted well, but that is only my opinion :)
    Mr. Arkanti
    noGG Arkanti
    nova | Arkanti
    Pub Baddie

    Co_Summit - A remix of Summit's unique areas to mould it into a better Combat mod experience. I also broke all the textures. Mad skills yo.
    WildGrass Games - I make video games.
  • HuzeHuze Insightful Join Date: 2003-11-12 Member: 22724Posts: 475Members, NS1 Playtester, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    I've massively lowered the size of the player frames while still keeping relevant information. It still needs some styling.

    I'd like some comments/criticisms on this.

    image
  • DghelneshiDghelneshi Aims to surpass Fana in post edits. Join Date: 2011-11-01 Member: 130634Posts: 941Members, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    That's looking great, although it might be a bit too small for 1920x1080. It's always the same dilemma for user interfaces: You never know what pixel densities people have and how far away they are from the monitor. Scaling automatically by resolution is hard enough already due to the different aspect ratios, but you can never anticipate the user's screen size and distance. We might need to add scaling via console command.
  • JibrailJibrail Join Date: 2009-04-16 Member: 67200Posts: 866Members
    edited April 2012
    how about something like this
    image
    it gives more room for long names u can have it on each side and allso be able to enable one and disable the other when/if needed ( incase u got each caster taking on one team at a time )
    the numbers u see 1-6 are the top six spots on the leader board so the player with most points is allways in the number 1 spot the arrows up and down on each side enables u to scroll down and up the name list of each team when casting or spectating a 14-32 player server.

    I hope this helps or atleast inspire some other ideas.
    good job guys
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • WilsonWilson Join Date: 2010-07-26 Member: 72867Posts: 1,397Members
    I love those little heath bars. Great work.
    In-game name: Wilson

    My Crosshair Pack: LINK
  • TriggermanTriggerman Graphic Artist Join Date: 2004-11-10 Member: 32724Posts: 553Members, WC 2013 - Supporter
    edited April 2012
    I like it Huze, but it's just a tad too small for casting live at that size so I'd say to increase the scale slightly, but it's more compact and just looks better!
    However I did like the larger portraits for the forms/weapon in the previous version. It could take more focus as it is quite important after all and should be well readable at a glance.

    Also as a tip, I think a method of getting a more accurate representation of the casting quality is to save your screenshot in Photoshop at JPG-quality 2, which I think makes it look like a 720p stream.
    image


    And for Jibrails version I find separating the two teams is a bit unnecessary. MOBA games display other information, such as skill cooldown and equipment, but for NS2 there's just the weapon/lifeform, health and name that the caster needs to know. So squeezing them together a la Huze's for easier readability is okay imo.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • HuzeHuze Insightful Join Date: 2003-11-12 Member: 22724Posts: 475Members, NS1 Playtester, NS2 Playtester, Squad Five Blue, Reinforced - Shadow
    QUOTE (Dghelneshi @ Apr 22 2012, 02:54 AM) »
    That's looking great, although it might be a bit too small for 1920x1080. It's always the same dilemma for user interfaces: You never know what pixel densities people have and how far away they are from the monitor. Scaling automatically by resolution is hard enough already due to the different aspect ratios, but you can never anticipate the user's screen size and distance. We might need to add scaling via console command.

    Yeah, that's my main issue right now. I was watching the internetsLIVE stream last night, and my frames took up a huuuge chunk of his screen. On my larger resolution the size seems just about right, and these tiny frames are probably too small. I'll try to come up with a better scaling system.

    QUOTE (Jibrail @ Apr 22 2012, 04:23 AM) »
    it gives more room for long names u can have it on each side and allso be able to enable one and disable the other when/if needed ( incase u got each caster taking on one team at a time )
    the numbers u see 1-6 are the top six spots on the leader board so the player with most points is allways in the number 1 spot the arrows up and down on each side enables u to scroll down and up the name list of each team when casting or spectating a 14-32 player server.

    I hope this helps or atleast inspire some other ideas.
    good job guys

    I'm not sure I like the left/right split. It just makes it harder for the viewer to quickly get the information he needs for the sake of needless symmetry.
    I think it's best if the players always stay in the same position on the screen. If they all started shifting around as they get kills it could be very difficult to keep track of.
    I don't know what the best way to handle 32 player games would be, but those won't be happening for a long time, and they'll probably never be casted.

    It was your idea to switch over to the horizontal bars instead of vertical. I'm assuming this means you actually like the vertical bars more?

    QUOTE (Triggerman @ Apr 22 2012, 09:49 AM) »
    I like it Huze, but it's just a tad too small for casting live at that size so I'd say to increase the scale slightly, but it's more compact and just looks better!
    However I did like the larger portraits for the forms/weapon in the previous version. It could take more focus as it is quite important after all and should be well readable at a glance.

    Also as a tip, I think a method of getting a more accurate representation of the casting quality is to save your screenshot in Photoshop at JPG-quality 2, which I think makes it look like a 720p stream.

    And for Jibrails version I find separating the two teams is a bit unnecessary. MOBA games display other information, such as skill cooldown and equipment, but for NS2 there's just the weapon/lifeform, health and name that the caster needs to know. So squeezing them together a la Huze's for easier readability is okay imo.

    I tried to make the silhouettes as distinct as possible within the small size. I think they're all pretty distinguishable at a quick glance. I won't know for sure until I see it used in a real match.
    image

    I think the resolution matters more than the encoding, but I'll keep the jpg 2 in mind.



    Thanks for all comments/critiques.
  • JibrailJibrail Join Date: 2009-04-16 Member: 67200Posts: 866Members
    edited April 2012
    I changed that because I didnt put HP text with number in it, but if u like the one I showed ya on the cast then go for it.


    Allso I was just thinking why not switch info tab places of players and CC+hive as u clearly need more space for each player use the whole buttom, U can use less space than what the marine commander UI use and still display all the important info without sacrificing too little text or weapon/class icon right?

    like this, I made the icons bigger just to show what I mean but just think how much info you can put there once u adjust text/icon size.
    image

    I think its a clean solution and would leave you with alot of actual game space so yeah no bars sticking out too much to the middle of screen.
    Post edited by Unknown User on
  • RyneRyne Join Date: 2012-02-25 Member: 147408Posts: 443Members, NS2 Map Tester
    A few small suggestions that I would make:

    1) Ability to zoom in and out via scroll wheel

    2) ability to pan by left clicking & holding, and moving mouse. Sorta like how you move a phones touchscreen around

    3) Ability to click the "player icons" and instantly zoom to that player


    Looks great though!
    Ryne aka R-W-Ryne (twitch)

    Trying to stream NS2 often: everything from scrims, to gathers, to pub play!
    Ryne's Twitch Page | Ryne's Casts (Steam Group) | Blind's Twitch Page
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