Multiplayer text chat system

Kudlaty shared this feedback 4 years ago

I think (and hope) it is being currently worked on, but I'm posting this because it was asked about many times during 'multiplayer overhaul' stream, but not answered and discussed few times on steam forums.

Current implementation of chat in multiplayer is cumbersome and awkward.

Idea is to rework chat system to make it more comfortable and versatile in use.

How it looks now works well in small co-op scenarios where all players are on same 'side' and pretty much always nearby. In situation where players are scattered around game world and divided in factions it becames simply hard to use.

Most of communication happens between people nearby, not everyone on server. For example: 2 opposing factions, each containing few players. Some people of faction A doing mining, and others building ships. They all need to communicate quickly, efficiently, without interrupting eachother and without letting know everything faction B. Current quick comms is GLOBAL, Everything adressed to particular group or single person has to be sent from menu hidden somewhere in tabs. Also there is no way to write to all people near you.

What we need is Local (50m? 100m?) area/Antenna range chat of quick access. There are three ways I see it working.

1. Change global chat to Local/Antenna, Keep faction, global and personal messages in comms tab and give bindable key for quick access to comms tab. Also keep text always 'on top' - visible clearly even when in terminal.

2. Move comms tab out of terminal straight to HUD with selectable tabs for local/global/faction chats and introduce whispers/private messages "/w <playername><text>". Each tab should have own font color and 'bigger range' tab should show text of smaller one (global showing text of all tabs>faction shows itself local and private messages>local - itself and pm's). Very well working solution known from many MMO games.

3. Keep comms tab mostly for history and add bindable keys for instant access to Local/Faction/Global chats.

Simply adding chat commands (like /L /F /G /w <name>) would work too, but it looks definitely less professional.

Many times I've been told 'why don't you just use microphone? why no teamspeak or discord?' Not everyone can talk while playing. There are spoken language barriers. With text chat I can try to translate languages I don't understand. Also that still does not give me ability to easily point recipents.

Replies (4)


I think it is a good idea.

Many games use 'Tab' key to change the chat mode.

Team Chat is the common mode, click once 'Tab' key is the World Chat.


This needs to happen... the chat interface in SE is atrocious, and is a very basic element that can ruin gameplay... I have to do most of my intra faction chat via steam... which requires pulling up the damned overlay every time I want to say something... can't post everything in global, and local chat requires entering the control panel, then the comms then the specific broadcast you want to look at.

There needs to be a more intuitive and quicker access method to chat with other players both local, faction, and allied. I for one love the antenna broadcast communications, and enjoy that sense of immersion however having to constantly enter the control panel to chat to someone who's nearby... or worse yet, the steam overlay... pretty well destroys any of that immersion.


In Hawken ( RIP ), Global chat was Y, Team chat was T- simple as that. All we need are two sensible key bindings ( no Shift + or Ctrl +, just one key ) that allow us to talk to everyone, or just our own faction.

Can't possibly be made any more complicated that unless those responsible are incompetent at basic game design...


I've noticed that the method of triggering the Dreadnought chat is very practical.

Just Enter = Message for all - Tag transparent or gray;

Ctrl + Enter = For Squadron (Will be Faction in SE) - Green Tag;

Shift + Enter = Team (Will be Allies in the SE) - White Tag.

Also in the options, you could have the transparency control of the chat when it was not triggered. Being totally hidden (very transparent) until totally visible even without being triggered (minimum transparency).

In their forum, they are discussing shortcuts to control how long it will be active after it is triggered. We could already try to implement with that as well.


This one I like!

Edit: However I still want it to be depended on the Antenna. As I Think that's a cool feature.

Forces you to build arrays :D


I am playing with people from other countries. I sometimes want to copy the written text from chat, to paste it into my translator. And then paste it back, paste to works fine. Copy from doesnt work at all.

This is such a simple feature and not possible. And it was in the past.

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