Ghost wrote:The reason I've decided to design this way is so that "Important" information is fixed in it's location in the interface. This allows my "eye" to know where certain information is going to be at any given moment. This improves my ability to process and scan for the most important information quickly... Because I know where it's going to be. (Not to mention the majority of our users will be accustomed to processing content left to right (language)).
If we design an interface with a collapsable panel and the layout (thus information) is designed to move because of that, we don't want the starting point for the other information on screen to move if it's important.
If the collapsable content was on the left, then where my eye goes to process the text, in a text based game, can vary by 150-200 pixels. This will slow game play and ultimately provide a disadvantage to skilled players as they develop hundreds of hours familiarizing themselves with the layout. It would actually be in their best interest at this point to never collapse the menu - which isn't what we want.
Sure, all of you today, as players of RoK, are uncomfortable with the progression of information – but that will change quickly. RoK wasn't designed with collapsable content. This game is and we want to take all of that functionality into account. Especially based on a previous conversation about the panel auto-expanding when pertinent information is present.
The reason we don't wanted to create a fully customizable interface with draggable and moveable panels, is because we want to be able to fully understand the User Experience with our content. If we know specific information is always going to be on the left, when we can design interactions based on the fact that content is on the left. Both Nitehawk and Remnant spoke to this earlier. Customization only makes sense when the range of interactions is vastly different amongst each user. However, In Rok and Ember, almost every activity in the game follow the same user flow (leveling, OADing, dueling, exploring - the same). It's better to not customize but instead improve those exact user flows than to allow users to customize and muddy the User Experience unknowingly.
But hey, if it's what you want - go for it.
Honestly, I think some people just need to get into it. For the actual right and left panels being swapped, that is easily done through a configuration option, but I think default can be the way you designed it, as I agree with you 100% on how collapsible content should be. Besides that though I 'won't' do fully draggable/movable panels or anything like that. I don't like it that way period. Someone else with permissions can eventually make a different client that's like that but the default client I prefer something more set. So I agree with the partial things you can do with panels as discussed.
I try to take what people say at heart for alot of things, but sometimes I'm going to go with what I think will be better in the end. I think in all honestly Ghost has a good idea on how a client should flow, so I do hope you continue with what you're doing for the client interface. 8)