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nietoperek

Graphical programming - easier scripting for newbies?

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Hi,

 

I know that DU is not planned to be easy, and scripting will be irremovable part of game mechanic. It is something cool... but write hundreds lines of code can be bothersome task for non-programmer players; beside this, scripting is quite boring in form (you know - lines and lines of numbers and letters, nothing fancy).

 

So. Maybe we can made scripting mini-game itself and give it some interesting graphical interface, easier to understand by "normals"? Of course "text hard mode" will be always available as second option ;) and even "graphical programming" can have less options than text one, like "beginner" and "veteran" versions :)

 

I not talk about simplification of programming language itself, but more about some kind of GUI/IDE for that - with auto-complete and - most important - easy graphical interface like "blocks" of code for building apps. I know at last two projects, which use this kind of editors ; LEGO Mindstorm and Scratch. Here are pictures of programs build in them:

 

[sCRATCH]

 

Scratch-Lissajous-nevit-01.gif

 

[LEGO]

 

mindstorms-software.png

 

EDT: Here is wiki about this style of programming. And you can even use some like this for LUA, too!

 

flow_graph.png

 

In my opinion it will decrease "starting cost" for lot of people, and it can be even inspiration for someone for start learn "true" programming ;)

 

Toughs?

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Making proper graphical scripting interface will undoubtly improve experience for people with no proper programming background.

They may look stupid and unreadable to me compared to text, but statistics say many people use and like Blueprints in UE4.

 

If DU devs choose to implement any graphical programming, I strongly suggest Blueprints as inspiration. It does a good job handling abstraction, and many people use it in serious work, that says enough. Also, DU devs are probably very familiar with it (should I say intimate? ;)).

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They said that scripting will probably work in both script and a "module/puzzle" sort of system. You simply can't make a module for every single whim a programmer can come up though, but a person with no LUA experience could probably set up a functional ship without having to go to a Jedi Programmer Temple to study the Arcane Arts of Coding :P

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Lua is already quite easy, everyone can learn the basics very quickly. 

So is handling a revolver good sir, but you won't be pulling a precise quickdraw by knowing the basics :P

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My proposition is more about style than substance - I know that LUA is nothing hard, but I write few basic scripts in my life (in Python, another simple language) and writing lines of text is... quite boring in most cases. We talk about game, not programming course - and we can "gamify" this aspect to make DU more appealing for casual player.

 

To be clear: I not suggest simplification of language itself. I only want attractive method of input ;)

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My proposition is more about style than substance - I know that LUA is nothing hard, but I write few basic scripts in my life (in Python, another simple language) and writing lines of text is... quite boring in most cases. We talk about game, not programming course - and we can "gamify" this aspect to make DU more appealing for casual player.

 

To be clear: I not suggest simplification of language itself. I only want attractive method of input ;)

Good sir, I am a programmer by trade and I even do find writing code tedious. But you can't stream-line coding to an interface that can do anything you want. Which is what the devs are pretty much saying in an interview with the XPGamer on youtube. You that don't know of coding, can make a basic spaceship, but a guy who specialises in that, will make a work of art. Same goes for building stuff. I am terrible at building stuff, except for a blocky house maybe :P But I can code stuff into LUA quite easily :P

 

 

I can see a 3rd party Add-on that will make an interface for LUA scripting, then giving you a text to copy in the game's LUA script tool, but I can't see the devs coming out with any possible module for making a functional script :/

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They already have quite a few LUA scripting programs (plug-ins, interfaces?) out there.   FEKO is one, ATOM editor is another (though ATOM is designed for Table Top Simulator, it should still work with a little tweaking.)  so it shouldn't be hard to find one that works for those who want it.  The biggest hurdle in such a visual editor is the macro (working pre-set scripts) library.  Setting up or downloading a working script isn't hard but SOMEONE will have to do the initial programming work.  For those of us who can script, we develop these libraries as we go .  We come up with a line of code and keep it for repeated use.  Many of the programmers reading this topic could probably create a library for others, but should they? I for one WANT a clear division of talent between players.  And I want to be clear I have nothing against making certain aspects of the game more accessible, but to do that with scripting I would have in game tutorials so they could learn ACTUAL programming.  Not turn it into a "mini-game".  When you start including mini-games for everything that is challenging it stops being a sandbox.

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So is handling a revolver good sir, but you won't be pulling a precise quickdraw by knowing the basics :P

I think that the basics will be enough for most small constructs, that's why I don't think will be a problem. Complex scripting is something that I can only see on big stuff. But ofc it depends. 

 

 

My proposition is more about style than substance - I know that LUA is nothing hard, but I write few basic scripts in my life (in Python, another simple language) and writing lines of text is... quite boring in most cases. We talk about game, not programming course - and we can "gamify" this aspect to make DU more appealing for casual player.

 

To be clear: I not suggest simplification of language itself. I only want attractive method of input ;)

 

Some people will find it boring , someone will like it. You'll not be forced to script, pretty sure the devs will develop the game to make it enjoiable for the majority of the players first, so I doubt it'll be a "must have". Still, I doubt that a graphical interface could make scripting more fun. I don't care personally as long as the text interface will still be available. 

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To me, the Lego example looks more complicated than code. ;-)

The Scratch example looks quite interesting, only the garish colors hurt my eyes.

 

Perhaps  a system like this could even speed up things for experienced coders; they might use it to get the backbone of a script done and then switch to the code editor for details.

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To me, the Lego example looks more complicated than code. ;-)

 

The Scratch example looks quite interesting, only the garish colors hurt my eyes.

 

Perhaps  a system like this could even speed up things for experienced coders; they might use it to get the backbone of a script done and then switch to the code editor for details.

Sir, nothing speeds up things like a quick typewriting skill and a mechanical keyboard when it comes to programming, of which, I have both. For the uninitiated, yes, make basic scripting a "put the correct plug in the correct slot" kind of situation, but don't expect LUA scripting automatons like that :/

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To me, the Lego example looks more complicated than code. ;-)

 

The Scratch example looks quite interesting, only the garish colors hurt my eyes.

 

Perhaps  a system like this could even speed up things for experienced coders; they might use it to get the backbone of a script done and then switch to the code editor for details.

 

Learning the code is very often MUCH easier than figuring out the UI.  UI's take away a lot of the problem solving skills that you can develop with learning how to code that one day, you'll be stopped dead in your tracks when decide you want to REALLY dig in and do something cool.  Then you find yourself having to learn the code anyway.  Save yourself the time and frustration.

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I have been coding on a hobbyist level in BASIC, C, JavaScript, and PHP, so I don't have a problem with code. I still think a thought-out UI might be fun and not much of a problem if you are aware of the limitations, and some people will just never touch code.

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Just let me export/import from VS2015, write some unit tests and git, and I will be a happy bunny

Truest words hath never been spoken good sir. Although, the interpreter is there to make things easier with a libary to look into, since there would be specific functions imported for the game's purposes and the API hooks won't have to be released in a wiki or in the forums, but instead they could be in-game to help the coders out. That's my pinion though :P

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I'm not a programmer and I'll never be one. However since I've started to play SE, creative mode mostly I've learned in a short time thing or two. LUA seems to be much easier so I think everyone eager to build something amazing (all by himself) can learn it ;-). Fancy GUI is more than welcome but I hope I'll learn quick and stick to the code.

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Yeah it will be realy cool! I don't know anything about programming but this feauture can be useful for people like me.

 

I'm not going to make any friends by saying this, but I don't think the LUA programming aspect should cater to the lowest common denominator.

 

There will be people in the game who are good at coding, so let them do the programming for the components that are sold on the market.

 

Making the programming aspects of the game cater to people who don't know anything about programming really just feels like another excuse to cater to people who don't want to have to interact with anyone else in the game ever. 

 

If you don't know how to program, find someone who does and pay them to do the work you need done, or learn how write code yourself. 

 

Sure there will be example bits of code provided for us, as NQ already stated, but don't cheapen the whole experience of programming by turning into a Visual Basic clone. 

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An interesting idea. I actually suggested this exact idea a while ago. I hope something like this comes into play, as I fear my current knowledge of coding may not be enough.

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An interesting idea. I actually suggested this exact idea a while ago. I hope something like this comes into play, as I fear my current knowledge of coding may not be enough.

Lad, the fact is it can't be done. Programming is math, mostly. And I know from experience, that many people have no idea how to solve an equation or what the correct procedure, to solve a mathematical problem, is. Now, add the fact that programming is essentialy, you yourself, building an algorithm through written commands... do you think there can be a brick, or a puzzle piece that can cover every possible mathematical paadigm? They can't.  

 

As I said, limited and very basic wiring that everyone can use to make a ship flyable like a jet, sure, highly precised, pitch-perfect cruise controls, keypress pressure counted to the milisecond to emulate hitting the pedal at your own pace, that will take code, a lot of code to be in fact, possibly a hyper-loop of commands, just for the battleship to be able to roll and pivot off of another ship's lock-on.

 

 

Everyone here can take a pair or quad of bikes, add a motor and make an improptu car. But not everyone here can make a Lamborghini. Cheers.

 

 

 

P.S. : If anyone reading this is in high-school and makes the joke "math is stupid, I won't ever need it in my life" and want to build a good ship in Dual, starting studying pronto, and git gud at figuring out how mathematical boundaries work, they are quintessential to programming if you get them in your thinking process.

 

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