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After the last Game Design post about the game’s theme, some of you discovered the point “moving in swarms” in one of the diagrams and wanted to know what is it all about.

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After the last GD post about the game's theme, some of you discovered the point "moving in swarms" in one of the diagrams and wanted to know what is it all about.

Our first gameplay was very RTS like. You control a lot of units, send them to different places on the map to capture, build or protect stuff. But somehow it never really felt like being underwater. We really wanted our units to stick together like a real swarm instead of being spread across the ocean. I mean, that's what we always see, when watching ocean documentaries - hundreds and hundreds of tiny fish forming a giant swarm, swimming as a whole.

So that is what we were aiming for and the first gameplay tests felt awesome. The moment you are moving all our units at once in one big swarm, it feels so much more like cruising through the deep sea, watching out for prey. You feel much more "connected" to your units, which really makes you "leader of the swarm".

All right, now you’re commanding a swarm – all units at once – one click. Only in rare occasions you move single units, but never far away from your swarm.But that leaves the question: How should the swarm be controlled?

We prototyped two different ways so far:RTS controls (e.g. Starcraft 2):

  • Right clicking sends the whole swarm to the target point
  • Swarm units move in formation
  • Camera can be moved freely by moving the mouse cursor to the edge of the screen

Hack and slay controls (e.g. Diablo 3):

  • While holding down right mouse button all units directly follow the movement of the mouse
  • Swarm units move in formation
  • Camera is centered and locked above the swarm (center of all units)

We are torn between both possibilities. So we thought – why not involving you guys!How would you like to control your units in Submerge?

  1. Hack and slay (e.g. Diablo 3): holding down right mouse button with locked camera
  2. RTS like (e.g. Starcraft 2): right-clicking on map with free camera

Just leave us a message with your opinion down in the comment section, tell us what you think, we love hearing from you!

Comments
Delta_Osiris
Delta_Osiris

Why not try a combination: Camera moves RTS style, but you can lock the camera to the centre of a swarm by pushing a button. So if an alert comes in while you're looking elsewhere, you can immediately snap to your swarm and the camera will stay locked on.

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MannIn
MannIn

Yeah have a look at Heroes of the Storm!
But I really like the idea of a Diablo movement too! I just wonder what happens to the camera when you just move one of your units?

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vanGestern
vanGestern

I think it is annoying having to switch between two camera modes all the time! I mean, I want to control my units - not the CAMERA!

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Lemonsponge Author
Lemonsponge

nahhh sorry I did NOT want to downvote your comment! Those buttons are so damn close to eachother! Actually I really like the idea of the combination, especially with the alert.

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vanGestern
vanGestern

I would like to have standard RTS controls - always worked - always will work!

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peekaboo73
peekaboo73

They do work, but they can be a bit clunky for some games imo. The other controls seem much smoother from what was shown here.

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BioDestroyer
BioDestroyer

I prefer the RTS controls.

When I play C&C Tiberian Sun there is a button ('F', If I remember correctly) that, when pressed while having units selected, the camera follows them. You could do that.

It would be basically the same thing as having both systems, the only difference is that both would use the RTS clicking.

Right clicking sends the whole swarm to the target point

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Lemonsponge Author
Lemonsponge

That's a nice one. I really like the idea of combining the systems - or implementing at least the "F"-Button :D Maybe we'll find a solution that works completely without all of that key pressing action.

Meanwhile I had a chat with our GD and we actually plan on creating a rapid prototype to test the combined system.

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