You might have noticed that we changed the look of our game to be more 3D-ish (more about that here).
This means that other things are bound to change as well. One of those changes are the way we are conveying the sound direction.
Here is how the old system used to work:
When a human shouts, you can literally just hear the sound direction and follow that. You will be able to tell how far or close the sound is, and you can also tell if it is coming from the right or left. This is really useful in avoiding monsters.
HOWEVER, there is a slight problem introduced by a constraint we put in the game mechanics...
The problem: how can you tell if the sound is coming from below or above the screen?
The problem is caused by: Limiting the ability to rotate the camera. At the moment, the camera does not rotate.
Solution: Introducing... UI Arrows!
As a human player, when the other human shouts for you, you see an arrow that points to a direction and a face indicating the type of the sound (it could be a portal or a monster for example).
This will give you a clear indicator of the sound direction as well as how far you are from the other human.
Note that, the closer the sound source, the bigger the icon.
Another useful feature is that... well... ironically... you don't need to hear anything anymore. You can play on mute. However those who rely on hearing will still have a better edge.
Here is a video for a full match using arrows. Watching the video with headphones is recommended.
Ok, time to explain the newer system!
Instead of using UI, we thought, why not use something more natural. Something like... WAVES!
Again, we are just trying to solve the problem of not knowing if the sound is coming from above or below the player.
When a human shouts he produces a soundwave. This soundwave traverses until it reaches the other players like this:
You can notice that the wave came from the left side of the screen and slightly up. It is still functioning as the arrows without resorting to using UI Elements. It blends with the game well.
Here is a video for a full match using shout waves. Watching the video with headphones is recommended.
We are not really sure at the moment where to go from here. Which one should we stick with? And why in your opinion? This is where we need your feedback!
Let us know if you think there is even a better way!