Currently the punch button only punches the block immediately in front of you and in the direction you're facing. This is fine for punching horizontally, but of course if you want to punch vertically you need to tap on the block itself. This becomes a problem when you're at the far left or far right of the level, when The HUD gets in the way of clicking on blocks. Often times it's the punch button getting in the way of my punching!

//I wanted to post a picture here but it won't let me, google image search "touch screen analog stick" and you should see what I mean//

Replacing the static button with an analog-stick-style button like [in this picture (or not, see above)] would allow the player to punch in any direction at all times. (as in you would punch at the same angle the analog stick is being pulled). I'd imagine it would only start punching once you've pulled the stick as far as it will go to decrease the chance of accidentally breaking things, but that's touchy-feel-y. Making this change would let us use the fast-digging-while-walking of the punch button but in more directions than left/right, and would make accurate digging on the edges of the map possible as well.

I could continue to give examples of why this would be more versatile, useful, and intuitive than the current set-up but hopefully it's already apparent. (ALSO doing this would make digging easier for people playing on smaller screens (ie. not tablet) because again less of the precise screen tapping is necessary).

I understand that making this change isn't as simple as just adding more data to a list, like adding different looking blocks mostly is, but I feel it's very important to the overall playability of the game, and that you should at least prototype it to see if it works and feels good... Good controls are pretty darn important in mobile games (thus why one button games do so well!) but I'm preaching to the choir here, so I digress.



ALSO it's a lot more touchy-feel-y than for digging, but making use of the analog stick setup for placing blocks, if managed to be done right (I have some vague ideas but I'm not entirely sure how to go about it...), would also be very beneficial for much the same reasons as for the digging (the HUD will still get in the way of placing blocks otherwise). Maybe something like you aim with the analog stick and when you let go it places the selected block, aiming on an invalid space does nothing so you're not committed to placement once you've started dragging the button. But again this one is a lot more sensitive to good design.

TL;DR:
  • Replace the static "Punch" button with an analog stick
  • When the fist is selected, you punch in the direction you pull the analog stick
  • Use the button in a similar way for placing blocks, not just breaking them


One last thought; in Minecraft you can break blocks while holding a block (you don't need to be holding a tool (or fists) to break things). It works for them because they have LMB for break, RMB for place. Obviously that doesn't work on a touch-screen, But maybe putting some thought into that simple mechanic (break, place, break, place) might yield some interesting results. EDIT: not as in "I don't think you thought about this at all", you obviously did that when you made the punch icon in the inventory, but more as in "I don't know how you'd do it, but if you could it would be great".


I think I explained that well. If anything isn't clear for some reason let me know and I'd love to go more in detail, or give more examples as to why I think this is important. Enjoy the wall of text (though I guess you already have at this point).