Foot questions

So with the benefit now of however long it’s been, and at the prompting of some of the comments in the last thread, I opened up the “FootRightStandard” set this morning just for a quick look-see. And I realized it’s a bit of a mess.

Back in the day when I was first putting these sets together, I had a pretty hard-core attitude about it. I felt like I was going to just present pieces that you the user would then assemble into whatever item you wanted. So rather than having ten boots with the same foot part and just different designs along the top (Superman’s boot top versus Batman’s versus Captain America’s floppy top, etc.), I thought I would just provide the foot part (which stayed the same) and then separate tops, so you could make your own.

But as time has gone on and we’ve gotten more sets and more feedback, I’m rethinking that position.

It seems to me now that the best way to do these sets is the way I did the most recent Legwear release, where you’ve got the complete item, then a breakdown into pieces of that item in whatever configuration. That way the people who want one click items can have it, while the more advanced users who want the pieces to mix and match can do that, too.

Given that, I wanted to solicit your feedback on whether I ought to redo the FootRight sets, or at least do a couple of sub-sets (like BootTops and Foot or something), with a more orderly breakdown of items.

38 Responses to Foot questions

  1. I like the idea of breaking up the boots, and I would also like more boot tops.

  2. One one hand, I’d like to see the sets simplified, some of them take a while to load. On the other hand, I like having pieces to build custom bits with. On the third hand, Being able to keep it simple for the average user is appealing.

    So I’m not much help here :(

    Maybe A Male/female Basic set that contains full items
    and a Male/Female advanced set that contains pieces? That puts four sets per foot.

  3. We could use more female shoes without the big high heels. Don’t get me wrong, I like high heels on a women but they just aren’t always practical.

  4. Can you say Aligator Boots?
    http://www.justdesktopwallpapers.com/images/celebrities/elishacuthbert/elisha_cuthbert_snake_skin_boots_1024x768.jpg

    How about lacy boots?
    http://houseofelliot.net/images/model_lace_bridal_boots.jpg

    I like some strap options as well.
    http://www.motorcycletoystore.com/cruiser/images/uploads/Sturgis-Boot2-duo.jpg

    Of course I mention that some boots without high heels would be good for the women and promptly provide some links to high heel images. I do recognize the irony but its done now so take it for what its worth.

  5. It would be nice to have the different parts of the boots ,it’ll give more flexibility to peoples design.

  6. Hey — a note about female feet and shoes. Some of them are in rather awkward angle, which isn’t really fixable with rotation nor flip. What I mean is that too much of the “inside” of a foot/shoe is showing, and not enough outside. (Male shoes and feet mostly manage to avoid this problem.)

    The angle just looks wrong for other bodyparts, and I can’t for the life of me figure out how I’m supposed to work with them. :(

  7. I am all in favor of this idea. Just last night, I realized how limited the foot selection is. For instance, now we have all of this great fantasy armor, yet only two pairs of shows that look good with most of them. I think hands and gloves could use this update as well.

    Similarly, it would be really cool if we options for the upper arm area for the FantasyArmor set.

  8. You know how compulsive I am about “orderly” so yeah, I’m in favor of anything that makes the arrangement of items more logical.

  9. I’d like to see boot tops that fit better with the alternate leg poses. Even with fitting and finagling, it doesn’t always come out the way I’d like.

  10. I don’t think the footwear section really needs the complete item them the breakdown. I think it’s been working perfectly fine as it is. Plus that gives you the option of having more unique items.

  11. I think we should be able to break it down, like what we can do with the legwear… Plus the matching footwear for the fantasy pieces would be epic! :D

  12. Sounds good to me. I’m always in favor of breaking down items into smaller parts.

    Also, I agree with Jake at #5. We need a few more armors in the feet section to go with legwear fantasy armor. I mean items for the foot itself, the area below the ankle. Legwear fantasy armor has the area from the ankle to the knee covered, but I think we need something for the feet.

    Same with the hands.

  13. I think break down may be best on footwear, considering I like foreward pointing feet best, so with a few foreward feet bottoms, almost any top could attach to it, or indeed any foot position.
    I think there is a need for more footwear to match various clothing such as Armour, would also like to see a different dress shoe and sneaker … just for variety.
    I like the high heels and platforms, but we do need some female with lower heels.

    I agree and am also hoping for upper arm armour,
    and once again, please don’t get aggrivated with me, but more hand postitions where the thumb is towards the body, you have ONE but it seems rather odd and clunky for some positions, I have seen a lot of “backwards hands” that look like they have been broken … Please no one take offense, you are doing great for the tools you are given.
    Also a hand outstreatched towards the viewer would be kewl, as in reaching for the viewer or shooting energy blasts.
    I know I ask for a lot. but of course they are only suggestions.
    I am loving the new addtions, makes it seem like my birthday or Yule.

  14. Maybe have some more forward-facing shoes and boot bottoms.

  15. I’d like it if at least a subset of the footwear could be designed so that tops and bottoms could be configured to match for different foot poses and/or angles, like head-on, turned to the left a bit, squished up in the toe like I’m walking on it, and so on. The upper part would be about the same for these, but the lower part would be different.

    And as long as I have a wish list, footgear/leg additions so you can make a character who is down on one knee.

  16. I love all the talk about how we need more female footwear choices with flat heels, and how high heels aren’t practical. I agree, it’s just that it reminds me of this:
    http://www.heromachine.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/flashblackcanary.JPG
    I like the idea of putting the foot and tops in separate categories. It would make it easier to navigate around.

  17. Nick Hentschel

    No objections here. I haven’t really had any trouble with the “foot” catalogues, so any improvements that you can make are just making a good thing better.

    My only suggestion would be to work on the Foot components that already have a foot *in* them, so to speak. That hinders my choices in coloring, since Color2 will always color the foot-flesh.

  18. I would love to see the footwear broken down in parts. It would also be great to see some more of the footwear from other HM editions adapted to the HM3. Armored feet, boots with straps(like the 80’s X-Men boots with 2 straps near the top),amphibian webbed feet(we have a webbed hand and a webbed foot attached to a leg,but not just a foot),bird talons. Any and all additions would be welcome.

  19. Well since you asked, I am all for a complete redo of the footwear. You art work has gotten much better over time since you started this project, and to be honest those early footwear ( and gloves ) pieces don’t mesh as well with the legwear and tops you have added to the program now.

  20. Good idea on breaking down the boot components, and we DEFINITELY need more boot tops.

    Also, and I think this has been touched on before, is there even a need to have ‘left’ options for any item in HM3? With the flip function it kind of gets rid of the need for lefts. Then you could free up all that extra space for new stuff…

  21. @Imp (20): Personally, it wouldn’t bother me to not have left side copies of the Right side items, as I tend to just flip and move things that already have a left side option available instead of changing items windows, however for your casual user that don’t want to use the advanced features (such as flip, or moving items ) not having the left side items would be a hardship Especially since not all the items you flip moved to the left side of the body and need to be moved on your own.

  22. Well, that’s easily fixed, just code the starting location in so that when you flip something, it’s automatically placed where the left side object would be…

  23. If it’s that easy, YOU do it!

    Kidding.

    Without getting into the weeds, while it wouldn’t be insurmountably difficult, it’s also not THAT easy — there’s a fair amount I’d have to be tracking, you have to program logic in that says “This is a mirror-able item, so treat it this way as opposed to this other way for a non-mirrored item”, etc. Possible, but there is a fair sized cost associated with it both in terms of program load and my programming time.

    Regardless, it doesn’t get around the main problem, which isn’t programming difficulty but user interface. It’s not intuitive (to say the least) to expect someone to realize they can take the same set of items, choose Multiples, pick two of the same thing (the second of which appears right on top of the previous one), then click Flip, then do whatever they want with it.

    Generally with application and user interface design, you want the user to have to guess as little as possible, and present them with clear, easy to understand, easy to follow, intuitive workflow whenever you can.

    Opinions differ as to what’s intuitive, of course, but this one doesn’t seem like a particularly tough call at all.

  24. Watson Bradshaw

    Love the idea of being able to have more freedom with the footwear also I do miss these two from HM2.5

    http://i122.photobucket.com/albums/o240/watson_kaboos/FEET.png

  25. So the foot art either sucks, or is fine as it is. It either needs to be organized differently, or stay the same. Got it.

    I kid.

    Thanks for the feedback. I think on balance, after sifting through all the input, I’m just going to leave it as-is for the time being. It’ll be one of the prime candidates for an item and art update after the recode, but it’s at least serviceable for now.

  26. Sounds good. The recoding should definitely be done before this.

  27. @Jeff: To get around the ‘intuitive interface’ problem, have you considered something like, when you mouse over the flip icon (or other icons), a brief description of what you can do with that button will show up?

    It could be something short and to the point, like “Press this button to switch item to left side.”

    I dunno, I guess I was just thinking that, if you could free up all that screen space currently occupied by Left Side Items, it would give you room to add in whole new _Categories_ of items in the months and years to come. Now granted, right now I can’t think of any categories you’ve haven’t covered, but that’s not to say someone wouldn’t in the future.

  28. Being a nocturnal entity, I always wake up too late to weigh in on this stuff before the shouting is over. But for what it’s worth, I concur with Skiriki(#6) that the foot orientations tend to be pigeon-toed (I’m paraphrasing here), somehow especially for female feet.
    And I agree with Imp about the whole Right Side Mirrored approach, but understand the counter-intuitiveness argument, but agree with Imp that it’s fixable — I had a long… hell, I’m still ON the learning curve; it’s part of the fun.
    AND I lean toward the idea that what we have is fine for now, so the best course is to shine it on until the massive, paradigm-shifting revamp, at which point all the items on everybody’s wishlist will no doubt appear in our collective cyberstocking. Or something.

  29. Relying on a mouse-over to read text explaining how to do what you want is pretty much the definition of non-intuitive :-) Think about Apple, the gold standard in great user interface design. Their flagship products all “just work”. Buttons are where you expect them to be, functions are obvious, and you hardly have to think about HOW to use the thing, you just are USING it.

    I am a long, long, LONG ways from that, but that’s the goal.

    The pigeon-toed thing bothers me too, but at this point I don’t know how I’d fix it. Is it just the orientation of the foot, or do I have to redraw the leg too?

  30. Jeff, you wrote “I have the sense that we’re pretty much done with adding new items, with the exception of female bustiers”, but we extremely need additional hair, eyes and mouths! We still don”t have “shiny” eyes, evil mouth without tusks and many other things!Also, we need additional Backplane items – some tails, wings, mechanical gadgets etc, and more Backgrounds.
    Thanks.

  31. I agree with Rozenstal, we really need that stuff

  32. Rozenstal and Malfar, I am not “done adding new items”. I am done adding new items FOR NOW, so I can do all the other things I talked about here to get this thing from alpha status to beta status.

  33. Jeff, it is mostly the orientation of the foot.

    Although my dislike of Liefeld is well-known, I agree that human foot can be a CENSORED when you have to draw it and if I were a cartoonist, I’d do quite a lot to avoid doing that…

    Thankfully, I am not.

  34. I guess I see what you’re saying, Jeff. And you obviously know much more about your own program than I do, so… :D

    As for the orientation of the female feet, yeah, some of them look a bit funky, especially some of the boots. Many of them look to be drawn from a side-on view instead of a three-quarters front view like the female ‘superhero boot bottom’ is.

    To me, this:

    http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk178/Diamond197207/boots1.jpg

    looks a lot more natural than this:

    http://i280.photobucket.com/albums/kk178/Diamond197207/boots2.jpg

  35. Well Jeff I think those last additions where awesome but could you sometime later do the MK female ninja outfit and a Jack O’ Lantern head? Atleast the Jack o’ lantern head! PLEASE?

  36. My main concern with the foot sets is that most of them are all angled the same. HM3 offers a lot of versatility in posing, which leads to a need for feet angled straight on, sideways, from above, from below.

    I would like to note that while I say this is my main concern, it’s still not a very big concern because there’s already a great deal more variety in the food positions than in previous incarnations of HM.