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Author Topic: Suggestion about alternating groups  (Read 1972 times)

Gabrybbo

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Suggestion about alternating groups
« on: December 04, 2012, 09:54:41 AM »

Right now pressing the key bound to an alternating weapon group cycles the weapons in it, but sometimes i'd really like the possibility to automatically switch to another weapon. How and why?

First, why?
Let's observe this Medusa (through a mirror possibly, as Perseus taught us):

Spoiler
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As you can see i'm using the left AM blaster, so if i'm forced to engage a ship on the right i have 2 choices:
1. turn the ship until i'm able to fire the blaster
2. press the key again to switch to the other blaster

The first can be done easily with a medusa (she's agile and has an omni shield protecting her back) but can be very risky with other ships.
The second is unintuitive and "slow" (at least for me: I hate pausing the game for anything other than giving orders :P) and if i happen to have more than 2 weapons i have to hope that the next one is the right one.

What I really miss here is a way to swith instantly my active weapon.
So, how do I do that?
Simple, when i move the cursor outside the firing arc of my selected weapon it switches to the first weapon in the group that covers the new position.
So if i just move the mouse to the right of the Medusa my current selected weapon switches to the second amblaster, allowing me to fire it without turning the whole ship or mashing keys.


Of course, there are issues with my idea:
- What if i just wanted to turn the ship (you know, the turn-to-cursor thingy) but not actually wanted to use another weapon? That can be "solved" by changing the condition needed to switch weapons:
Instead of being "is the cursor outside of the weapon arc?" it is "is the weapon outside the weapon arc +X degrees?". X is some sort of adjustable sensibility for this feature (yay for more sliders!), so that it can satisfy everyone. :)
- another problem comes out when you have to shoot with an alternating group while operating an omni shield. If you move the mouse away from the weapon arc you would change the active weapon, but you may not go back to the original weapon if you have some overlapping arcs. Annoying, but the issue can be sorted out by having a key that makes the current weapon "fixed", so that even when moving the mouse it won't make it switch to another one. If I know that i need to keep that weapon selected no matter what, i can just press that key and everything will be good. It will still cycle through all the weapons as soon as i fire, but moving the mouse won't do anything.

So, what do you think?  :)
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TJJ

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Re: Suggestion about alternating groups
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2012, 04:25:32 PM »

I like the sound of this idea. +1.

I'd have to see it in action, but it seems like it'd be a lot less clumsy than having a 'switch to next weapon in weapon group' button.
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xenoargh

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Re: Suggestion about alternating groups
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2012, 05:27:35 PM »

How's about just a smarter behavior for that type overall?

1.  If aiming at point XY.
2.  Weapon cannot hit XY.
3.  Weapon switches to next weapon in Alternating group.
4.  If weapon can hit XY, aim and fire, if not, do 3.
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Mattk50

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Re: Suggestion about alternating groups
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2012, 01:59:31 AM »

doesnt this already happen to a degree? If you click in one arc where the other wep cant hit it does not fire, when linked?
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Cosmitz

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Re: Suggestion about alternating groups
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2012, 02:21:24 AM »

The issue is that for some weapons you want to fire them even if the cursor is not in the arc, see fixed hardpoints with low arcs or just end of the arc firing to account for target drift.

Personally when i'm in that situation i just use a smart combination of weapon groups, Hold Fire / X commands and autofire.
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Gabrybbo

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Re: Suggestion about alternating groups
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2012, 04:29:37 AM »

@Cosmitz:
Usually if you have hardpoints in an alternating group you don't have other weapons in the same group. Look at the Dominator ballistic hardpoints: if you put those in an alt group you still get to fire those two, maybe the left/right one first, but you'll cycle between those as usual, even if your mouse is away from there. You have no reason to put 2 hardpoints and a couple of turrets in the same alternating group. Maybe in a linked one.
My suggestion only selects you a weapon that can actually fire where you aim, but alternating groups will still work the same as they do now.  ;)
So if you have already the "best" weapon selected (which means the one with the arc closer to the cursor) it won't switch and will fire even if you can't hit.

@Mattk50:
Yes, but linked weapons that cover the same point will fire together, which is highly annoying with strike weapons.

@xenoargh:
Good idea, and it gave me another one:
If you fire outside the weapon arc (+X degrees, as I suggested before) it switches to another weapon that can shoot there. So if you have 2 amblasters, as in my Medusa example above, you double-click where you know there's the other blaster's arc and it will switch (because the first one can't shoot at the cursor) with the first click and then fire with the second.

But there's a problem with basically every "click-to-cycle" solution: what if the current weapon is already the closest to the cursor? You have no way of knowing it, so you may end up wasting a shot. And there may be other problems, especially with hardpoints and strike weapons and stuff... Basically, i'd discard this idea instantly, but still it's a good thing to just throw these out, maybe someone can use the flawed suggestions to come up with a better one. :)

Brainstorming, ladies and gentlemen! Everyone loves it.  :D
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