Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Report any bugs or ideas/suggestions that arise during testing of the Alpha Build Version 5

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby Lurking Grue » Wed Sep 04, 2013 2:59 pm

Ha! Was able to squeeze in a few minutes. So, continuing my previous post...

youngneil1 wrote:- Equip item: As discussed this could also display in the menu (where you choose the item to equip) the time needed for equipping. When this is more than 1 round, the player character would just automatically end her/his turns until the equipment change duration is over. Some items might be equipable even without time loss, other snot at all.

Yes. The turns needed for equipping would be shown in parentheses after the item, like: "Heavy Mace (1)". In addition, some items might be equippable faster than a turn but not instantly, costing some MP but not the whole turn. (That is, if we start to use MP as AP.) These would be shown like: "Throwing Knife (2MP)".

youngneil1 wrote:- Delay/Wait: It might work in a way tat the player character will just switch positions with the NPC/creature/PC right next after him in the initiative queue, dropping down one place with each click of the delay button (so it's one click on delay button, next in line creature/NPC/PC acts, the delaying player character is again asked what to do, including delaying again, and so forth). A player character who has delayed his action will remain at that (later) slot in the initiative queue for the rest of the battle (so delaying comes with a price).

I wouldn't move the delaying PC to the new Initiative Slot for the rest of the battle, but only for the current combat round (next round, he's back at his old Initiative Slot). Not sure there needs to be a price for delaying, other than not taking your turn quicker. You do risk getting attacked and damaged first when you delay after all.

If you delay so long that you don't use your turn by the end of the round, you lose that turn (can't save actions over combat rounds). Other than that, I think having the Delay just skip one slot down is OK. Random idea: How about having the Delay be variable. If you select Delay, the PC moves 1d4 slots down (or 3d10 points down). This way it's not so certain when you get to act next with the delaying PC. Suspense!

slowdive wrote:I wonder if instead of using the info box, we just add stationary floaty text over the moused over creature (so the text would be on the combat map).

Oh, yes! I didn't know we could have mouse-overs (floaty text on hovering mouse over something), so I didn't even suggest them. Of course, floaty text by the creature on the map would be better, than a text in a removed info box. However, I wouldn't dismiss the info box completely. How about, having both the mouse-over popup and the info box. How I'd do it, would be to provide quick and short info on the popup (like creature name, current HP, and your ToHit chance against it) and more thorough info in the info box (like weapon used/damage done, AC, DR, etc.). You could left-click on the creature to see the info without the need to keep hovering over the creature. Of course, having what info is shown be author customizable would be really grand. (For mouse-over popups in general, there are many uses for them outside combat too. Like the character record could use them as tool tips, explaining rules and whatnot.)

By the way, I do hope we get mouse controlled movement in combat (and out of combat too). How about: left-click to move (and select if clicked over buttons, etc.), right-click to act (attack or "special action" in combat; talk, open, etc. out of combat) for the interface.

slowdive wrote:Another thing I thought about would be to have the range and move distance graphical indicators have separate toggle buttons.

Yes. I concur, the screen looks very busy with all of the overlays on. Have them each have a toggle for on/off. I'd fine-tune the colors of those overlays, but that can wait for later. (Maybe, green for PC movement range, yellow for PC attack range, light blue for enemy movement range, red for enemy attack range. I'll do a sketch once I have the time.)

slowdive wrote:Oh, and the issue with underline versus brackets [] for short cut notifications, I tried to do the underline option originally, but I couldn't find a way to do it with the way titles are assigned to GroupBox controls (believe me, I tried :D )

OK, if that's the case, brackets will do just fine too. Of course, if we "lock down" the commands, we can use images for the buttons (or?) and do underlines and whatever for the text as much as we like.

youngneil1 wrote:All hooray for CombatInfoBoxData.cs :D! A script for the info box would be really cool. Authors could then also implement skill checks to decide how much info is shown, great potential.

Yes, yes, indeed! That would be great. If you don't know the monster you're facing, you wouldn't get much info on it. Once you know it better, you get some info (AC, DR, etc.). Later when you know it well, you get the whole stats (incl. vulnerabilities etc.). This would put Lore skills to great use!

youngneil1 wrote:Therefore there could be a customtizable floaty info box (FloatyCombatInfoBoxData.cs) with core data for quick glance (like e.g. hit points left, state of/effects on the monsters (sleeping, held,...) and a customizable stationary info box (StationaryCombatInfoBoxData.cs) with more detailed info that takes more room.

Yeah, I support this. I want to have both the floaty info popup and the static info box.

OK, now I really have to go. Until tomorrow! Got still more to say about this (and about the other active threads of today, like Jer's beta plans etc.). :)
"It is pitch black. You are likely to be eaten by a grue."
User avatar
Lurking Grue
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 12:26 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby Lurking Grue » Wed Sep 04, 2013 3:15 pm

Ahhaahhhaa! Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!!

QUickly posting just that I think that Karl's idea below could also work. Then we might not need the static info box, but could have a nice bestiary accessible with the Show Stats (or whatever it'll be called) button. Coolness! (If the author doesn't want to use this function, to create a bestiary, so to speak, he can just ignore it. The engine would then show the creature's game stats by default. Or something.) More on this tomorrow, because now I really, REALLY need to go. To the Batmobile!!! Dun-DUN-dun-DUN-dun-DUN-dun-DUN! Batmaaannn!! :D

youngneil1 wrote:Therefore there could be a customtizable floaty info box (FloatyCombatInfoBoxData.cs) with core data for quick glance (like e.g. hit points left, state of/effects on the monsters (sleeping, held,...) and a customizable stationary info box (StationaryCombatInfoBoxData.cs) with more detailed info that takes more room. Actually, we even might have a floaty infobox and just a button Called "Creature Info": A click on creature info button would allow to select a creature which in turn would open a second window, like a character sheet, but just with info text on the selected monster. This would give author all the space they need to write information of the creature down. Perhaps they would even add a picture (or just reuse the token of the creature again, perhaps zoomed a little). So, our two scripts might then be FloatyCombatInfoBoxData.cs and CreatureScreenData.cs; also the right hand side info box would vanish and we would get a new button "Cretaure Info". Ah, we could even just use the "Show Stats Button" that Grue has suggested this way: Click "Show Stats Button", then click either a creature (Creature info screen) or a PC (Character screen). Should be cool. What do you think?
"It is pitch black. You are likely to be eaten by a grue."
User avatar
Lurking Grue
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 12:26 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby Lurking Grue » Thu Sep 05, 2013 9:56 pm

Well, I forgot what I had in mind yesterday to ramble on about, so instead I'll throw another sketch your way. This is something I did as a mock-up of prospective combat overlays for movement and attack range.

Image

The green squares are the ones Fledge (the active PC in the pic) can move to. I gave him 4 MP and calculated diagonal movement to cost 1.5 MP and moving through a friendly character to double the movement cost through that square (i.e. 2 MP in a straight line, 3 MP diagonally). By having the movement range be shown as a grid, instead of a field, allows for showing the actual real movement range accurately. It won't show on impassable squares nor incorrectly disregard creatures in the way. Creatures in your way should hinder or block movement, depending on whether they are friendly or hostile (respectively). Tumble feat (IIRC) allows you to try to move through a hostile creature's square (requires a skill check), otherwise it is impossible and you need to go around the hostile creature instead.

Attack range wouldn't be shown as an overlay field, but as a "perimeter", a border around the area you can attack. It's much more clearer this way, IMO, as there aren't overlapping overlay fields. For the currently active PC, his/her attack range would be shown in yellow. (Btw, I'm sticking to very basic colors for legibility and "cleanness".)

If you hover your mouse over an enemy, its movement range and current attack range are shown. Note that this won't add the attack range to movement range to give a "possible attack range", but instead only shows the currently threatened areas as of this turn (e.g. for opportunity attack purposes). I think it is clearer this way. It's simple enough to figure out from the movement range where the enemy can attack on his/her/its turn. Enemy movement range is shown in orange, attack range in red.

If it would be difficult to do the movement grid for enemies quickly, on the fly, as it requires more in depth calculations than a basic X radius field overlay, then let it be shown only when the enemy is left-clicked (selected), not when hovered over.

Both the attack range and the movement range overlays can be toggled on or off independently.
"It is pitch black. You are likely to be eaten by a grue."
User avatar
Lurking Grue
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 12:26 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby slowdive » Fri Sep 06, 2013 2:25 am

Very nice LG, I like the UI layout with the small squares showing possible reachable move squares and the outline for attack range. It definitely looks very intuitive and more informative then the current system. So when are you going to officially volunteer for the Lead designer role? You are pretty much the unofficial lead designer anyway :D No pressure :lol:
User avatar
slowdive
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 3023
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 11:58 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby youngneil1 » Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:53 am

Most impressive, Grue and very detailed! Will take me some time to comment on all this great input... but short executive summary upfront: agreed!

Now, let's have a look:

Yes. The turns needed for equipping would be shown in parentheses after the item, like: "Heavy Mace (1)". In addition, some items might be equippable faster than a turn but not instantly, costing some MP but not the whole turn. (That is, if we start to use MP as AP.) These would be shown like: "Throwing Knife (2MP)".


Yes, rounds needed for equipment change /no change allowed should be in brackets behind the item. To have MP cost for items that can be changed (and then used or attacked with) in the same round is a nice thing to have. In any case, changing equipment is not considered an attack, so an attack would still be allowed in the same round. Despite this flexible MP cost, I would opt for staying to true a simple move and then attack system, where the attack ( and action equal to attacks, like us item, use trait or cast spell) end the turn in any case. It's simple and straightforward, having the benefit of being intuitive.

I wouldn't move the delaying PC to the new Initiative Slot for the rest of the battle, but only for the current combat round (next round, he's back at his old Initiative Slot). Not sure there needs to be a price for delaying, other than not taking your turn quicker. You do risk getting attacked and damaged first when you delay after all.


Agreed - this will allow double actions (delay to last position in a round, start next round a again on first position for characters who have won initiative in around. But you're right, why not?

If you delay so long that you don't use your turn by the end of the round, you lose that turn (can't save actions over combat rounds). Other than that, I think having the Delay just skip one slot down is OK. Random idea: How about having the Delay be variable. If you select Delay, the PC moves 1d4 slots down (or 3d10 points down). This way it's not so certain when you get to act next with the delaying PC. Suspense!


This make it a little less reliable, but as we are rolling to hit and damage also and enjoy the suspense... yes, let's do that. I would opt for using a random number of slots for the delay amount then. Using 3d10 initiative points might leave a character in a situation where he still is next to act, even after he delayed if his initiative was greater than the next highest initiative plus the delay roll.

You could left-click on the creature to see the info without the need to keep hovering over the creature. Of course, having what info is shown be author customizable would be really grand. (For mouse-over popups in general, there are many uses for them outside combat too. Like the character record could use them as tool tips, explaining rules and whatnot.)


Left click in combat is atm used for selecting targets for spells, traits or ranged attacks. Right click is unused though. Perhaps better use right click to get creature detailed info (ideally in a "bestiary" - good term - extra screen)? Open in this regard.
User avatar
youngneil1
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 4682
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:51 am

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby Lurking Grue » Fri Sep 06, 2013 10:58 am

Funny, I posted a reply to this an hour or two ago, but it never made it through. Strange. Did I just hit Preview by accident? Oh well, I'll repost it.

slowdive wrote:So when are you going to officially volunteer for the Lead designer role? You are pretty much the unofficial lead designer anyway :D No pressure :lol:

Heh, okay, I'll volunteer for it. I'd be honored. I hereby volunteer for the Lead Designer role. 8-) I'll just caution again, that I can't code much at all. So any real coding must be done by someone else, i.e. you.

P.S. My Scandinavian (false)modesty prevented me from volunteering for anything with "lead" in its title - that would be presuming too much. :)
"It is pitch black. You are likely to be eaten by a grue."
User avatar
Lurking Grue
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 12:26 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby Lurking Grue » Sat Sep 07, 2013 6:21 am

youngneil1 wrote:Despite this flexible MP cost, I would opt for staying to true a simple move and then attack system, where the attack ( and action equal to attacks, like us item, use trait or cast spell) end the turn in any case. It's simple and straightforward, having the benefit of being intuitive.

Yes, it is simpler and much more straightforward to have the basic combat action system be: Move + Attack (or other full turn action). Later, post-release, if there is need, we can try to hash out a more complex Action Point system, but for now let's just stick to the tried and true, Move + Attack. Only some rare actions, if the author so wants, would use the MP cost system for now.

youngneil1 wrote:Agreed - this will allow double actions (delay to last position in a round, start next round a again on first position for characters who have won initiative in around.

Well, that is true, but I don't see that as a big problem. The character in question would have traded his chance to go first in the round to go last and a lot can happen during the turn (maybe even make the character unable to act at all, e.g. being hit by spells like Hold Person or Sleep). Going last in a round by delaying all the way to the end and then going first shouldn't give undue advantage to the PC in question in any case. He is not getting extra actions, he just times his actions so that they happen back to back. Besides, it is a problem only for the one PC that wins the Initiative and goes first in a round.

However, should we want to hinder such "gamey" tactics, we could introduce a bit of gambling to the Delay action. In addition to it being variable, as explained above, have it be possible to lose the delayed action if the delay takes the initiative slot "out of bounds", i.e. beyond the last slot. To illustrate: if there are 8 participants in an encounter (and thus, 8 initiative slots) and one of the PCs is at initiative slot 5. He delays his turn and rolls 1d4 to see how many slots down he moves in the move order. He gets a 4 and counting down the list (5+4=9) we notice he moved off the list as slot 8 was the last position. Thus he lost his action for that round. Better luck next round!

I'm unsure how well people would react to such system, though. Maybe it's a bit too, er, quirky.

youngneil1 wrote:This make it a little less reliable, but as we are rolling to hit and damage also and enjoy the suspense... yes, let's do that. I would opt for using a random number of slots for the delay amount then.

So, delay moves the character 1d4 slots down the move order. Is 1d4 good or should it be 1d6? IMO, 1d4 is good.

youngneil1 wrote:Left click in combat is atm used for selecting targets for spells, traits or ranged attacks. Right click is unused though. Perhaps better use right click to get creature detailed info (ideally in a "bestiary" - good term - extra screen)? Open in this regard.

But as left-click is used for selecting targets, wouldn't it fit perfectly as a way to get more info too. If you have no spell/trait/etc selected, the left-click would just plain select the creature, which would give more info about it. I'd save right-clicking to actions, like attacks and such. I'd hope to have the mouse UI follow the rule: left-click for Select/Info/Move, right-click for Action.
"It is pitch black. You are likely to be eaten by a grue."
User avatar
Lurking Grue
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 291
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 12:26 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby youngneil1 » Sat Sep 07, 2013 7:30 am

I'm unsure how well people would react to such system, though. Maybe it's a bit too, er, quirky [snip]
So, delay moves the character 1d4 slots down the move order. Is 1d4 good or should it be 1d6? IMO, 1d4 is good.


1D4 is fine and let's avoid losing the whole turn (so a character can always safely move to the back of the chain). It would indeed feel likely glitchy to players if suddenly they would lose the whole round for this character. The random effect on delay in itself will be unusual enough for them, best have some combat log entry on delaying that explains the range of 1 to 4 move order position and shows the rolled result.

But as left-click is used for selecting targets, wouldn't it fit perfectly as a way to get more info too. If you have no spell/trait/etc selected, the left-click would just plain select the creature, which would give more info about it. I'd save right-clicking to actions, like attacks and such. I'd hope to have the mouse UI follow the rule: left-click for Select/Info/Move, right-click for Action.


Alright, charm of this would be that the "right = click action" scheme would then be the same in inventory screen (equip), shop screen (buy/sell) and combat screen (attack). Choosing targets for spells, range attacks, used traits and used items actually feels like attacking/doing an action to me though. How about having all this "execute selected action on target stuff" go to right mouse button, too? This way I could choose to cast a spell (left click: cast spell), select the fireball spell (left click: fireball, maybe later click a spell level or spell category first for sorting purposes), now range and area of effect would ideally be graphically shown, and then still do left clicks to inspect my targets (left click: on any token, with fireball already selected) and then finally a right click to fire off the spell on the target most suitable? So, left click on any creature token on the map would always mean "show info", on an empty square always "move there" (btw. only on neighbouring squares as otherwise we would likely get problems with alternative paths to the target field?).
User avatar
youngneil1
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 4682
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:51 am

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby Pongo » Sat Sep 07, 2013 7:51 am

You wrote yourself a fantastic CV for the Lead Designer role with all the great ideas and mock ups, Grue! :D
User avatar
Pongo
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 631
Joined: Tue Nov 27, 2012 4:58 pm

Re: Engine Ideas/Suggestions

Postby youngneil1 » Sat Sep 07, 2013 8:20 am

You wrote yourself a fantastic CV for the Lead Designer role with all the great ideas and mock ups, Grue! :D


Well, I forgot what I had in mind yesterday to ramble on about, so instead I'll throw another sketch your way. This is something I did as a mock-up of prospective combat overlays for movement and attack range.


Oh yeah, just look at that beauty of a move range indication model. I LOVE the square based approach, much clearer than using a whole coherent overlay. Also nice that the indicators do not fill the whole square, but leave a padding to the sides of the square. Well, it kills RedCarnivals controlled zone overlay which uses colored squares to show controlled zones, but hey, that's a minor loss as RC is just a testbed anyway.

Using a different approach for attack ranges (the rectangle) makes it much easier to keep the two different things (move range, attack range) apart.

I guess that when a square is in move range or creature as well as pc a blended color (some brown - green + orange - here then) will appear.

An intelligent overlay blending out non-walkable squares is a very good idea - it will make it less necessary to use the grid overlay, making it easier to grasp the structure of the battlefield with less graphical intrusion of an overlay UI.

Having diagonal moves cost 1.5 points and normal moves cost 1 point is something really need to prevent abusing the diagonals (poor thingies ;-)).

Moving through friendly squares with higher point cost (2x) is a new idea to me. It makes sense as pushing friends out of the way /side stepping them will take extra time. I think it's good for it adds some depth to party positioning. Will monsters play by the same rules, e.g. their movement cost for paths through their allies are doubled, too?

The A* pathfinding routines used by IB will likely need some adjustments here then to make such work - but generally it would be cool to have squares (swamp, deep sand, overgrowth, etc.) that cost more movement points than other, so I think it would very well be worth to adjust the A* in this regard. Also, thinking about it, the diagonal moves might pose another problem for A* if such cost 1,5 points? Ah, only Jer will be able to tell. For starters I would be fine if only PC movement would adhere to such varying movement costs per square, because the player can see the monster range, so it's not unfair, just unexpected sometimes how mobile the creatures are, I guess :).

If you hover your mouse over an enemy, its movement range and current attack range are shown. Note that this won't add the attack range to movement range to give a "possible attack range", but instead only shows the currently threatened areas as of this turn (e.g. for opportunity attack purposes). I think it is clearer this way


Yes, the player can add the attack range himself to the borders of the move range, that's ok and I think it's intuitive to do so.
User avatar
youngneil1
Backer
Backer
 
Posts: 4682
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:51 am

PreviousNext

Return to Alpha Build 5 Bugs and Ideas Reporting

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron