15

Consider this answer as an illustration of how awkward the rectangular <kbd>-tagged keys look as console controller button:

And compare with this mockup of controller button images:

Each button image could be added to the site's sprite sheet, which has a ton of unused space. Special "insert controller button" menu could be added to post editing bar. They could have a syntax like [key-xbox:A] and [key-ps:x].

Other SE sites have their own special features, why not add this handy thing for Arqade?

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    Well, for one, we're Arqade. And another, sounds like a ton of work for little benefit. It doesn't really add much functionality. And you missed the Wii/U. – Frank Mar 7 '14 at 3:12
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    Don't forget the Ouya. And the N64. And the Genesis. And the... – SaintWacko Mar 7 '14 at 3:33
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    @Frank Sounds like similar reasons to not have lazers. Are you saying you don't like the Lazer Mothership? – Raven Dreamer Mar 7 '14 at 4:10
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    @RavenDreamer Lazers is a straight up image change. No big deal. What's being asked for here is...slightly more complicated than that, especially for the custom markdown. And I don't think it really offers anything of value. – Frank Mar 7 '14 at 4:18
  • Sure, what I described is a bit difficult to do. Not very difficult, but considerably so. I don't know much about much, so I assume some of the more tech-savvy people who actually do this kind of stuff could come up with a much easier way to implement these icons, so don't take my rough sketch as a "do it or drop it" proposition. It's just how I, from far away, saw this could be done, in theory. – user1306322 Mar 7 '14 at 5:36
  • As an answerer you could achieve this yourself by simply using images. I don't think we need extra markup for it – Robotnik Mar 7 '14 at 5:41
  • Well then, I'd be happy if someone could shop up all the buttons and post that as an answer so I could accept it. My photoshop skills are way below publicly acceptable level. – user1306322 Mar 7 '14 at 5:43
  • @user1306322 - Same. and I'd be loath to simply crop them from existing images that may or may not have copy protection – Robotnik Mar 7 '14 at 11:16
  • See also meta.gaming.stackexchange.com/questions/316/… – badp Mar 7 '14 at 11:36
  • @badp guess what? They look like crap. Even Steam has implemented a "smiley" button into their chat to paste terribly visible unicode chars. This isn't a desired solution at all. – user1306322 Mar 7 '14 at 15:52
  • @badp I would suggest this answer as a better alternative for the console buttons. – Batophobia Mar 7 '14 at 18:04
  • @Batophobia this is intolerable. Even if the font smoothing is on. I mean, circled characters maaaybe, but look at those pathetic excuses of arrows. No way. – user1306322 Mar 7 '14 at 18:10
  • Perhaps you prefer this for A and this for B. – Batophobia Mar 7 '14 at 18:13
  • @Batophobia those are the same links. – user1306322 Mar 7 '14 at 18:48
  • Yes, on a NES controller A and B look the same. – Batophobia Mar 7 '14 at 19:32
4

For some reason, we have been stuck with (jjj) these not-great-looking kbd tags that just don't work well in most contexts, such as when used inline (notice how their baseline is lower than normal text and how those j's and this line right here, look, hit the box) or inside lists.

Some people think this is, after all, okay. I don't agree with these people, but I'd rather not make the problem even worse through javascript hacks.

Besides - what if we need to tell people to press the A button on their keyboard?

I think the problem is that it's not just awkward to use kbd for console buttons. It's awkward to use kbd period.

Even just these three small CSS tweaks would make things better:

padding: 1px 4px; /* instead of 2px 4px; also fixes baseline */
border-radius: 16px;
font-family: sans-serif;

enter image description here

  • The kbd tags on MSO look good imo and would fit here just fine. – 3ventic Mar 7 '14 at 11:48
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    @3ventic They'd look like this (don't pay any mind to the links; I just imported the whole MSO css for that picture.) – badp Mar 7 '14 at 11:52
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    I think something along these lines would be a pretty reasonable compromise. My biggest problem with the current kbd tags is that they're explicitly styled to look like PC keyboard keys, when those tags are often used for controller button inputs and other decidedly non-keyboard things. Since platform-specific images are probably not practical, this seems like a reasonable middle ground. – CloudyMusic Mar 7 '14 at 15:29
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    This would probably look fine if SE's UI designer paid us a visit. – user1306322 Mar 7 '14 at 15:54
  • @badp - Is there any way we could kick.. ahem, prod the SE team for some input into these suggested CSS tweaks? I reckon they'd work fairly well and isn't a major change – Robotnik Mar 12 '14 at 7:58

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