Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

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Thor
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Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by Thor »

I find the vehicle controls inferior compared to driving games. This shouldn't be so for this otherwise great game.

Assuming default keyboard layout:
1. Holding W should always accelerate forward instead of just braking when going backwards. You should not have to press W again to start going forward once your speed reaches zero.
2. Holding S should work the same in the opposite direction.
3. Add a separate braking hotkey (i.e. space) if you just want to brake. This goes with feature 1 and 2 naturally.
4. Smoother turning is needed. This can be fixed in different ways. I would like the vehicle to go in the direction of the mouse cursor if I hold a certain hotkey while driving. That would make it much easier to go in a straight line and turn smoothly.
5. A speed boost feature would be cool but not exactly necessary.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by JohnyDL »

1,2,3 wouldn't exactly be what say GTA (and other car games) have IIRC you press one button to accelerate forward and you 'break' until you stop, then press break again to reverse and press forward to stop and then go forward with no full stop in the middle (with the exception of games with gears which have an accelerator break up a gear down a gear system)

4 your mouse points your weapon, most of the time I want to be shooting behind me while running away from my attackers not turning to drive straight at them

5 kinda useful might be something you need rocket fuel to use :)

But this isn't a driving game I don't expect it to be amazing at driving it's useful for getting me from one end of my base to the other and good enough most of the time to let me not crash, dealing with the biters it has it's uses early games but with nukes now it's not a necessity.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by Ingolifs »

JohnyDL wrote:But this isn't a driving game I don't expect it to be amazing at driving.
The original suggestion isn't "make driving amazing", it's "make driving less aggravating with a couple of small tweaks". I think the OP's suggestion is valid.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by AileTheAlien »

The current driving controls are pretty standard for games that don't focus on driving. Factorio is not a driving game, so having separate brake and/or gear controls would be needlessly complicated.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by 5thHorseman »

Didn't driving used to do that? I recall being annoyed that your car never stopped and instead rolled forward and back a bit as you got out, and I recall being happy when I found it didn't in 0.14 when I came back to the game after about a year absent.

I don't want 1 and 2. I wouldn't personally use 3, but don't mind if it's there.

4 is critical for cars to function. I use the VehicleSnap mod but wish the game just locked vehicles to one of 16 directions. How often do you really want to go exactly a direction that is NOT one of the 8 main ones, anyway? I think 16 is a great middle ground between "feels like I can go any direction" and "I can go exactly in a direction that matches the game grid in a logical way."

5 sounds good. Maybe something you can research.
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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by Tertius »

I saw the vehicle control posts about the Switch port, and this reminds me that I cannot get into the PC cursor key vehicle control. I avoid using vehicles because of this.

The culprit for me is that the controls work from the perspective of the vehicle, not from the perspective of the player in front of the computer screen. If the vehicle drives south, it turns left on the screen if I press the right cursor key, and my brain just cannot learn this. It's even worse if the vehicle drives diagonally. I cannot immerse myself into the vehicle and know which key to press. I'm not in that vehicle, only my character.

I, as player, want the vehicle accelerate if I press the key that points into the general direction the vehicle points from the screen perspective, and stop if I press the key that goes in the opposite direction of the vehicle. If the car points north, I want the W key to accelerate, and if the car points south, I want the S ky to accelerate. I understand this is difficult, if the vehicle drives diagonally NE/NW/SE/SW. However, you can compute the X and the Y vector of the current vehicle direction and whatever is larger defines what control pair is accelerate/dececelerate (and the other pair is left/right).

Or how the Switch actually works: from the comments I interpret the vehicle will turn into the screen direction where you press the stick (and not the vehicle direction). This is great and intuitive! The only thing you additionally need is a key for accelerating and decelerating - shouldn't be too difficult to find, since a lot less actions are possible while in a vehicle, for example rotating things or join/split trains can have double assignments.

I don't demand a total rework - may be an alternative control mode, so players can choose: vehicle perspective or screen perspective.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by SoShootMe »

Tertius wrote:
Sat Nov 19, 2022 11:20 pm
I, as player, want the vehicle accelerate if I press the key that points into the general direction the vehicle points from the screen perspective, and stop if I press the key that goes in the opposite direction of the vehicle.
I think the devil is in the details but my hunch is this wouldn't actually work too well, considering control at both high and low speeds, reversing, and what would happen at the unavoidable thresholds of "general direction". I think having direction keys cause a turn towards the given direction with separate accelerate and brake keys might work, but only with two-handed control, which creates its own set of problems.

Either way, using a keyboard (as opposed to an analogue stick) the result is a "target direction" limited to horizontal/vertical/diagonal, with any desired intermediate direction requiring a meandering path - in practice this exists with the current controls but not to the same extent; I think the limit of eight directions would feel unnaturally constrained.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by Kyralessa »

I've played games that use compass directions for driving, and it's terrible.

It's harder to go in a diagonal direction because you have to hold down two keys, not just one.

It's impossible to go in a direction that isn't one of the 8 points of the compass.

Factorio driving is fine as it is.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by FuryoftheStars »

Thor wrote:
Sun May 21, 2017 9:37 am
I think as some have said, this isn't a driving game, so consider what the devs have done as being good enough. That said, I wouldn't mind 1, 2, & 3 being implemented, but I'd be against 4 as suggested. As mentioned, the mouse is currently the shooting control and I would not want this changed or have both tied to it (and frankly, having it drive towards your mouse doesn't actually help you any better in controlling the direction than current as far as I'm concerned). Having something like the Vehicle Snap mod, though, with a minimum of 16 directions, I'd support. 5,... eh, I really think it's not needed and maybe even feels a bit gimmicky.
Tertius wrote:
Sat Nov 19, 2022 11:20 pm
As the last two posters have said, I would not want this, either. It's actually unintitive to me and, as mentioned, limits the directions you can drive in too much for me.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by Nidan »

Tertius wrote:
Sat Nov 19, 2022 11:20 pm
The culprit for me is that the controls work from the perspective of the vehicle, not from the perspective of the player in front of the computer screen. If the vehicle drives south, it turns left on the screen if I press the right cursor key [...].
This is how every top down driving game I can recall worked, so the current way feels natural to me. There's also a real world example: RC-cars/boats/planes.
Or how the Switch actually works: from the comments I interpret the vehicle will turn into the screen direction where you press the stick (and not the vehicle direction). This is great and intuitive!
I haven't tried it for myself as I don't own a switch, but some players seem to have issues with predicting how the car will turn.
I don't demand a total rework - may be an alternative control mode, so players can choose: vehicle perspective or screen perspective.
Given that both modes are already implemented, offering an option (on all versions of the game) sounds like a low hanging fruit. But, as others said, being limited to 8 directions when using switch mode on a keyboard might be too limiting.

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Re: Smoother vehicle control suggestions [0.15]

Post by ssilk »

Maybe a compromise would be if you brake and the vehicle has stopped, then wait some time (0.3 seconds?), then the vehicle reverses.
Cool suggestion: Eatable MOUSE-pointers.
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