Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby xalles » Fri Aug 14, 2009 10:35 am

BlueSalamander wrote:On the "hours" played: if you spend time on a game, then reload to an earlier save, the game won't record that bit of time.

I save and reload a bunch on tough fights, but 3 and 4 hours still seems way under the mark. I minimize the game a lot to take notes and breaks (I run the game in windowed mode); I wonder if that mucks with the time-counter.

I finally thought to take screenshots to help show some of my ideas. Here's a screenshot of my #24 (the hidden arrow). I first noticed this in a battle in Tameliz where the color was a lot more relevant I promise. ;)

Here's a screen of #29 (possibly spoilerish). He's a lot easier to spot in map view.

Here's some more comments (couldn't sleep).

30) Bug: When casting Mass Cure spells on the whole party outside combat, if there are multiple party members standing on the same square (e.g. against some wall/obstacle), only one of them will be healed by the spell.

As an example, here's a before shot (Hrothgar and Elinor are standing on the same square). This shot is me casting Mass Cure Light. Then here's after. Notice Elinor was not healed.

I attached the save file at this spot just in case it helps.

31) Bug?: According to the "full attack" help file, characters should be able to perform a five-foot step after they perform a full attack. In the game their turn automatically ends after the full attack. The game does allow a five-foot step after doing a whirlwind attack and some full-round spells I tried.

Also according to the "full attack" help file, a character should be able to stop attacking after the first attack and use a move action on something. In the game, a character always keeps attacking a target unless it dies. In this case I prefer the way the game handles things (more streamlined), but it's still slightly inconsistent with the docs.

Similarly (but not a bug at all), if a character has performed a five-foot step and more than one attack in a round (i.e. part of a full attack) and there are no more targets in range (or LOS) of further attacks, their turn should end automatically. They can't do anything else that turn, no?

32) Interface: Bull rush and grapple could show chance of success on targeting icon, like attacks do. Perhaps pin and break free could show success chance as well, but I don't think there's a targeting icon for those.

Similarly, could show chance of hitting with touch attack spells on their targeting icons. This gets a little complicated though, considering some touch attack spells also allow saving throws. Not sure what you'd show the success chance of, hitting vs. doing full damage etc. Could say "45% chance to hit" or "45% chance for full damage" all at once depending on the spell to avoid ambiguity.

Edit: add Coup de Grace to this idea

33) Interface: I think it'd be better if the game centered itself on the desktop when opening in windowed mode (but still be movable of course), rather than always open in the upper-left corner. Even better would be if the game remembered where the window was when the game was closed/windowed mode turned off.
Attachments
KOTC save3.rar
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Last edited by xalles on Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby xalles » Sat Aug 15, 2009 2:13 am

Wow, that 1.06 patch was fast and comprehensive. Please bear in mind that while I think it's awesome that you are addressing some of my myriad niggles, I'm really just throwing them out there for the fun of it. I'm having a blast with this old-school romp niggles notwithstanding. That being said, all in all the improvements are very much appreciated. That's cool that you added some of my names to the random list too; I've been using Luminara as a holy-type dame in RPGs forever.

And here are some more niggles.

34) From what I can tell, the new auto-end turn feature is not doing anything different. (I made sure it was turned on in the settings. It wasn't on at first.) Here's a few screens of an example of where it should auto-end a turn but doesn't:
i) before doing anything on my tank's turn
ii) before attacking, five-foot step
iii) getting ready to attack by clicking on the gnoll
iv) and the aftermath: 1 2 (evil gnolls should know better by now)

Note that afterwards it shouldn't be Hrothgar's turn anymore since, while he still has a third attack, there aren't any enemies he can move within range to use it on. Also, I've noticed this behavior even if the combat roll panel and combat menu are hidden.

Edit: Regarding this, let me know if one of my saves would help find the problem. My game might not be turning the option on correctly or something with my old saves. I say this because I noticed that the option should default to on, and it didn't for me.

35) The new auto-walk is cool (arrow icons are a plus), but I think it should continuously pathfind as well. As it is currently, you can tell your party to walk around a corner, but as soon as you hold the mouse button down and auto-walk engages, the party stops moving if the path to the mouse cursor is obstructed.

As an example, in this shot the party won't auto-walk around the corner.

Otherwise, the pathfinding is really slick: I can open the local map and then single click on the other end of the map and my guys immediately walk the perfect path through the map. I can recall other games with similar options having real trouble with this (e.g. Infinity Engine games).

36) It might be cool if, when there are multiple map levels at a given location (e.g. Knight's Keep), there were a way to cycle through already-visited ones on the local map view. One way might to use the "back" and "forward" buttons in the bottom left for this. This cycling idea might be useful in seeing where stairs lead on adjacent floors (like at *spoiler* Hill giant Fortress where there are multiple stairs between levels).

37) I think the combat roll panel could be slightly improved by listing attack rolls/saving throw rolls/etc. as "die roll" + "modifiers" = "result" rather than just "result" as it is now. I noticed the panel does show the die rolls for attacks vs. concealment, which is cool.

Edit: add to this idea grapple and bull rush checks

38) Another combat roll panel idea: it'd be cool that if you clicked on a name in the panel, the screen would center on the corresponding character (if it's still on the field of course). Otherwise sometimes it's hard to tell who did what from the readout if multiple characters have the same name (e.g. "gnoll").

39) When a dispel works on a target, the game could show what effects the dispel dispelled. Even listing the effects in the combat roll panel would be cool.

40) If forging 100 arrows or bolts didn't exit the forge menu, it'd be easier to make several bunches at a time.
Edit: Nevermind this one, forgot I could buy unlimited arrows/bolts from shops, and cheaper!

41) Bug: I've noticed when enemies ready ranged attacks vs. spells, they can shoot through walls. Here's an example shot. The upper-right gnoll just shot Luminara (far bottom left) as she was casting a heal, their current positions matching the shooting positions. I noticed this behavior again at the Icy Rift fighting frost giants, where it was more obvious the line of sight was not there (sorry for no screenshot).

42) Bug?: I noticed a frost giant's cold immunity seemed to cancel both the cold and the bludgeoning damage from an ice storm.
Edit: Figured this one out! (by reading the "immunities" help text very carefully)

43) Similar to when targeting a melee or ranged attack: When targeting single-target spells, could show the target's name/condition/hp info on the lower-right of the combat screen. IIRC, it shows this info while the spell is going off but not while targeting.
Last edited by xalles on Sat Aug 15, 2009 10:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
What's with people who answer their own questions? I guess they're just stupid.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby xalles » Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:29 am

Here's a couple more issues I ran into while playing:

44) Bugs: cold place (level 15-16) *spoilers* When fighting Draxx the vampire cleric in Icy Rift, he dominated my tank with dominate person spell-like. I killed all his skeletons then finally killed Draxx, but Hrothgar was still dominated and the fight didn't end. I just cast invisibility on my guys while Hrothgar attacked me for about 10 more turns until the spell wore off. At that point, the fight ended, but strangely. I didn't get any experience for the fight and the mouse cursor disappeared. Worse yet I got stuck in the circle of walls that the fight was fought in.

In my next attempt in this fight Hrothgar got dominated again, and when I cast dominate undead with my wizard, the dominate undead spell tried to dominate Hrothgar back!

After not getting dominated (yay protection from evil) and winning the fight a couple tries later, the fight ended just fine (got EXP, wall opened up).


I've attached a save just before this fight in case it helps.

45) These spells look to have the same problem casting on non-adjacent party members outside combat as the Cure spells you fixed:
Lesser Restoration, Remove Blindness, Restoration, and Remove Negative Levels

They all say "out of range" when caster and target aren't adjacent out of combat, although I only tested the last two with valid targets.

Edit: Remove Curse says "out of range" too

46) Crafting bug: I'll let screenshots explain this one: before after
Attachments
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Last edited by xalles on Sat Aug 15, 2009 6:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby BlueSalamander » Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:39 am

34) From what I can tell, the new auto-end turn feature is not doing anything different.
Yes, something I have to look into.

I've noticed when enemies ready ranged attacks vs. spells, they can shoot through walls.
Not really, it may look as if the arrow crosses the wall but the "squarified" (rasterised) path taken by the arrow doesn't cross any wall. You won't see a gnoll shooting right through a wall at a character directly on the other side.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby xalles » Sat Aug 15, 2009 7:03 pm

47) Looting interface: When there are a lot of large piles of loot on the ground, it's sometimes hard to switch between the looting windows (because other piles tend to hide under the loot windows and you have to move the mouse out of a window to close it), and sometimes large loot windows can get in the way while you're trying to move around.

One way I think might improve on this: Say that if when you hovered the mouse cursor over a pile on the ground, all it said was "press ALT to loot" in a tooltip (maybe with some kind of loot icon). Then, when the player presses (and holds) ALT on the pile, a loot window like the ones currently in the game pops up displaying the loot in that pile. If the player left-clicks an item (or "all items") in that window, his party gets it if the pile is in range (or moves automatically to get it if not). If the player releases ALT while the loot window is still shown, the loot window goes away.

I think these ideas could streamline looting quite a lot. :mrgreen:
Last edited by xalles on Sun Aug 16, 2009 1:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby xalles » Sun Aug 16, 2009 1:09 am

48) Interface: The description of "silver" material lists that the damage of silver weapons is reduced by 1. The interface doesn't reflect this on the weapon's description or on the character sheet, inventory, or weapon damage modifier readout.

Edit: noticed it does list the reduction in the combat history, that's cool

49) Interface: I think spell targeting could be very slightly improved if there was an arrow or pointer protruding from the spell icon to show where the cursor was pointing (bottom left for now, but I read you might change that).

50) Interface: Should be able to use the scroll button to scroll on super long letters (like one I found *big spoiler* from Tyranixxus to Sulphur in the Fire Pits).

51) AI: I noticed a few different enemies who can cast Lesser Restoration, when damaging their CON with a wounding weapon (repeatedly), they restore the damage over and over again, instead of possibly more dangerous things. I don't think this should be so much of a priority especially if they've already taken a bunch of damage (and getting the CON back doesn't help except for fortitude rolls). Unless getting the CON back can also heal them, I'm not sure.

A memorable example of this was *mid-game spoiler* the dragon in the orc vs. green dragon fight underneath the Hill Giant Fortress. The dragon also kept casting Cure Lights instead of attacking while I was wailing on him.

As an aside I want to say the AI in general is absolutely excellent and that's why this stood out as weird.

52) Interface: I think the weapon focus and improved critical feats should be listed in alphabetical order by weapon (although it does make sense to list fists and touches first). This would be helpful on the feat selection screen, to make it easier to find the feat you're looking for.

53) Bug: In the description for the cleric spell Spell Resistance, the "sr bonus" link doesn't work.

Related: the "spell resistance" link in the description of the 21 SR cloak I got from Lady Shinaya in Vanicia after I rescued her leads to the Spell Resistance cleric spell, rather than to the spell resistance help file (which is where I think it should lead).

54) Bug: Something's weird with my craft wand interface. FWIW, crafting wands seems to work just fine.

55) Bug?: Luminara's got two pieces of equipment with a love-hate relationship: a +4 adamantine full plate with 10 acid resist (labeled "+4 black plate"), and a cloak of faith. If I put the cloak on first, the armor won't go on ("can't combine with existing magic"), but I can put them both on in the other order.

You can check out 53, 54, and 55 in the attached save. Hrothgar's wearing the SR cloak, and Luminara's got the two equips in her backpack (and the craft wand feat). Kline's got the long letter I mentioned in 50 also.
Attachments
KOTC save5.rar
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What's with people who answer their own questions? I guess they're just stupid.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby BlueSalamander » Sun Aug 16, 2009 9:01 am

Thanks for the great ideas, keep them coming. New version coming soon.
Are you supposed to be able to see all enemies roaming around a pre-explored local map once you reenter it? I guess it allows surprise attack opportunities but it seems kind of weird to see enemies your party doesn't have line of sight to. Seeing the enemies march around does look cool.
Yes you are supposed to be able to see them. Not realistic but I prefer it this way – it wouldn’t make sense anyway to see what the rooms look like but not who their occupants are.
xalles wrote: I noticed a few different enemies who can cast Lesser Restoration, when damaging their CON
Recovering 2 constitution points also increases their HP (by a number of points equal to their level).
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby Solivagant » Sun Aug 16, 2009 3:00 pm

BlueSalamander, I've bought the game a couple of days ago and I'm loving it. I just wanna say the 1.06 patch brought a feature I really like, the drag'n'walk movement. Please if you do any more changes to the movement, retain this mode! It's great, just like Ultima 7.
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby BlueSalamander » Sun Aug 16, 2009 6:38 pm

Thank you for your purchase, Solivagant. I won't remove the Ultima-like walk mode, no worries about that.
'Say there is a chunk of meat. Pirates will have a banquet and eat it! But heroes will share it with other people. I want all the meat!!' - Luffy in One Piece
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Re: Bought the game, loving it, and a pile of thoughts

Postby xalles » Sun Aug 16, 2009 11:49 pm

OK, 1.07 rocks socks. It's the bee's knees. It's the cat's pajamas. Any further negative comments I have will probably be few.

56) I hate to harp on the looting interface, especially with of all the awesome changes you made to item display (e.g. listing their value and color-coded materials), and maybe you plan to make even more changes to item boxes. But allow me to clarify my gripes (and perhaps others'?) about the current looting interface.

i) Item boxes are relatively big on the screen, even with only one item listed.
ii) Item boxes take mouse precedence over other stuff on the screen, most annoyingly other nearby lootpiles.
iii) Item boxes appear automatically upon pile mouse-over.
iv) In order to close an item box (other than by picking all the stuff up, which I usually don't want to do), you have move the mouse all the way out of it.

If one or more of these were somehow avoided, the loot interface could be greatly streamlined, IMHO. My idea in 47 avoids iii above by only showing the item boxes if the player is holding down ALT. (I called them loot windows in that post.) For one, this would allow the player to switch between item boxes quickly by releasing ALT and pressing it again over another pile. (Another key could be used here but ALT is a common looting button in other RPGs I've played, and it's easy to reach.)

Another possible improvement might be to close an item box if the player moves the mouse cursor anywhere off the listed item icons, rather than out of the entire box (thus avoiding iv). I thought of this because the item icons in an item box are always contiguous. One tricky aspect to this though is that while the cursor begins on one of the item icons in the box as it spawns most of the time, it doesn't always. Perhaps along with this idea, the cursor could be automatically moved over an item icon in the list (the bottom-most one might be best to keep the cursor out of the way).

On a related note but more of a nitpick, using SPACE to auto-loot is somewhat non-intuitive. If the looting interface were to be somehow streamlined, simply left-clicking on an item icon to auto-loot might be a better option. Doing the auto-loot this way might not allow item dragging to a specific party member, but while this is a cool feature, I personally don't use it much. I tend to auto-loot everything I want and shuffle stuff around as needed later. Not sure where other players stand on this.

To improve looting even further, loot filtering could be implemented alongside the above item box ideas. I listed some ideas for a customizable loot filter here. Here's an example of loot filter options in a recent game (the two "collect" options; colors denote item quality grades, yellow>blue>white). Similarly, I think the best place to put any item filtering options would be in the main settings list, and defaulting them to show/drop all loot. Edit: I just read you're planning on adding a loot filter button. Cool!

Also related, looking forward to the auto-move to loot feature!

(BTW, the Qt3 forum is where I learned about this game and they generally seem to like it. :) They're continually adding feedback in that thread also.)

57) Bug?: I noticed that when I used the spell Dominate Monster, I could melee attack the dominated enemies but I couldn't shoot them. Seems weird.

58) Bug: Sorry I edited this in long after I made the last post about it: Remove Curse on non-adjacent party member outside combat says "out of range". Hopefully it's the last spell with this issue.
Last edited by xalles on Mon Aug 17, 2009 6:10 am, edited 4 times in total.
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