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Author Topic: Design Rant : Inventory  (Read 17808 times)

Shinji_Ikari_9th

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #30 on: January 26, 2014, 20:13 »

Unless the sorting is stable, we will see the "dancing items" effect.

Also, some people remember placement of items, and having it purely visual and always auto-sorted will go against their perceptions at being able to tinker.  This may not be a good thing.

What laptop said.

I'm that kind of player sometimes. Like in Diablo 2.
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Trar

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #31 on: January 26, 2014, 20:58 »

You think we could get combat webbing in this game in any shape or form? Either as the initial ammo containers or a bonus item that lets you reload faster?

Automatic inventory sorting could be an optional feature.

I'm fine with ammo boxes, so long as we can find ammo that's not in boxes we can put in the boxes.

I'd be fine with items being destroyed after a certain amount of time they've been out of the player's sight (or not on the game screen). Given that players will have the ability to backtrack and possibly explore the Jovian moon base(s) in a non-linear fashion (I may be wrong on the last part) a part of me still wants to be able to make little stashes of my own. Maybe we can put items in containers? This might solve the problem of opening a container or looting a corpse before the player is fully capable of processing and sorting the items, because the player could just leave them there until they need them.

I can get if Kornel wants to make the game 'feel' a certain way, but players will probably backtrack for items on killed enemies/in containers anyway, especially if we can put items in containers.

Oh, yes - can we get an ETA on the Kickstarter at all?
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Simon-v

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #32 on: January 26, 2014, 22:36 »

Didn't Kornel basically say tinkering with the inventory was against the spirit of the game? Inventory auto-management does for you what you would do with it anyway, freeing you to think about strategy instead.

Please also look at "Emotional Engineering vs. Software Engineering" for some insights.
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Thiebs

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #33 on: January 26, 2014, 23:47 »

Guys:
I plan to address some issues that I often have with such interfaces in other games. Namely there will be a toggleable option to autofit items (seems as most UI programmers never heard of "dynamic programming" -_-), secondly, the rotate option will obviously be there for use.
Toggleable option to autofit.
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Trar

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #34 on: January 27, 2014, 09:25 »

I'd be fine with autosort so long as it's a togglable optional feature.

Is this game going to be on Steam Greenlight? I would absolutely LOVE that.
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LuckyDee

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #35 on: January 27, 2014, 11:54 »

Eg, if you don't take any large items, the list could go for at least 40 elements, which gives us... 15 pixels per item?

40 elements? That's a lot more than what DoomRL supports, and given that the number of ammo-type items should be reduced, if I understand you correctly, I'm wondering what other stuff is going to be taking its place.

I'm still unsure about the whole ammo thing vs inventory. Unless you want to actually encourage the micromanagement, I still don't see the need to keep it among all your other items. Sure, Diablo2 had it, and rightly so. But that depends on the answer of this question: how big a role is melee combat intended to play in JH?

In Diablo2, the role of ranged combat was close to negligible, since even the one class specialized in ranged could be built for melee as well. In this case, it makes sense to compensate the benefit ranged combat offers with a little inventory space.
If in Jupiter Hell melee combat is going to be a last ditch thing, a do or die tactic, this means every conceivable character will be carrying around ammo, and the need to clutter up the inventory with it becomes obsolete. A (limited) number of counters will do just fine.
Even if it's destined to play a bigger part, I'd say melee would have to be a serious contender to warrant the inventoried ammo strategy. And if on the other hand it becomes too serious - DoomRL-melee-like serious and beyond - you still wouldn't need it, since everyone would go for melee the moment they lay their hands on the right weapon/trait/combination of both.

So in short: please explain to me the necessity of keeping ammo in the inventory at all. Also see my previous comments here.
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Kornel Kisielewicz

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #36 on: January 27, 2014, 13:51 »

So in short: please explain to me the necessity of keeping ammo in the inventory at all. Also see my previous comments here.

"Oh cool, a rocket launcher. Of course I'll take it, no strategy here, because I'm lugging those 23 rockets anyway, because they take no space. No strategy here, move along."
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LuckyDee

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #37 on: January 27, 2014, 13:58 »

...and then take into account the fact that you can still limit the number of types of ammo carried... ;)

I'm probably being a pain in the ass here, but it's for a good cause. What I'm aiming at is that if you want the game to focus on the action and not on the inventory management, I think you should keep the inventory as lean as possible. Counters for expendables (ammo, medkits, stimpacks, whatnot) will help a lot. Especially if you keep them variable.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 14:04 by LuckyDee »
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Trar

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #38 on: January 27, 2014, 23:58 »

That's what I'm thinking. I'd be fine with DOOM-esque limited ammo counters if it meant a more streamlined game. 'Course, I'd be fine with traditional ammo-in-inventory too even if it's mostly in ammo boxes, but that's probably not gonna happen.
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Darren Grey

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #39 on: January 28, 2014, 18:37 »

I disliked the "tetris inventory" in Diablo myself, but I've seen it done better in other games (in particular in Sir, You Are Being Hunted). Key thing is to not have too many odd shapes and have the area to fill reasonably square. One problem I see in the mockup is you have 3x3 and 8x2 items in there, both sizes that don't fit well together. And the overall space is 7x8, which is bad for loads of items. Ideally it should be 8x8 and the only sizes are 1x1, 1x2, 2x1, 2x2, 2x4, 4x2 and 4x4. This makes them easy for players to juggle around.

I like Aerton's idea of having the model of the dude and the item pane, with equipped items given a yellow border/glow/whatever, Resident Evil style. It's intuitive and looks nice. Cutting out the slots overlaying the character model means you can admire your badass char more properly as you change equipment around, and would make everything look cleaner.

I also think inventory slots should be kept to a minimum, as it just leads to junk items. Weapon, weapon mod, armour, armour mod would do the trick. It keeps the item design focused on interesting content. Maybe later on in the game there could be additional mod slots added.

The ammo situation I think will need playtesting and tweaking to get right. It'll be a core part of the game, so something to fiddle with and get right early.

Love the NIN ammo :)
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 18:43 by Darren Grey »
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thelaptop

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #40 on: January 28, 2014, 19:07 »

Alternative idea: Keep your friendly neighbourhood tetris method (and for goodness sake don't use prime numbers for the rectangle dimensions), but tab/group according to what Darren suggested.

This also means a tab for ammo.

This will also mean a slightly more realistic mechanism for tracking some of the bulkier objects.  The disadvantage is that it feels like how modern FPSes work; carry only 2 weapons at a time, which may be a terrible idea.
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Zalminen

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #41 on: January 29, 2014, 01:43 »

This is a pretty valid point! For a moment I wanted to immediately go with it, however, there's another problem -- what about addon slots? Things like mods, or expansion elements for armor? There'll be no easy way to see what you're currently packing.
Just show them on top of the moddable item.
If you can add one mod to an armor, the armor will normally show a transparent smaller slot on top of the armor image and if it's already modded, it will just show the mod icon instead.
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Sereg

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #42 on: February 05, 2014, 20:41 »

"Oh cool, a rocket launcher. Of course I'll take it, no strategy here, because I'm lugging those 23 rockets anyway, because they take no space. No strategy here, move along."

There also needs to be a balance between that example, where of course you pick it up because there's no reason not to, and making inventory ammo such a hassle that there's no point carrying the weapon at all. In DoomRL, I'd pick up a rocket launcher early on, but later in the game when inventory started getting tight, I'd ditch it, because it takes a minimum of two inventory spaces to operate - one for the weapon, and one for a single stack of ammo. Sure, it offers some utility, including tactical wall destruction and corpse gibbing, but it's not really viable as a weapon(at least I never thought so). And the later I get in the game, the more I value an extra health pack, or stack of main weapon ammo, or mod for an assembly I'm trying to build, over the occasional utility of the rocket launcher.

Perhaps my use of the rocket launcher was fairly unique, and better players then I did find it a viable strategic consideration, but to me it was a utility piece that quickly outlived its utility - or rather, the cost of continuing to keep it quickly grew to exceed the value of the utility it provided.

I suppose what I'm saying is, the realism of the ammo mechanics isn't really the point. Just because it doesn't make sense for me to carry around 23 rockets(or however many you have - it can certainly be artificially capped without an inventory system, as in original Doom) like it's no problem doesn't mean it can't be beneficial to game balance to do so.

Then again, I'm the guy who doesn't appreciate tactics and just brute-forced every challenge that could be achieved through an exploit someone else discovered, so I'm not exactly an expert on strategic decisions, still less on game balance. Perhaps that decision to simply ignore the item entirely is exactly the consequence you're looking to enforce on less strategic-minded players like myself =P

Regardless, what I've seen of the game so far, including this thread, looks excellent. Keep up the good work - I'm definitely looking forward to Jupiter Hell ;)
« Last Edit: February 05, 2014, 20:45 by Sereg »
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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #43 on: March 10, 2014, 12:17 »

List inventory all the way. Maybe have large items like unworn armor and heavy weapons take additional spots to somewhat simulate how unwieldy they are, but grid inventories are just that much more prone to clusterfuck the interface to be worth it in my opinion. Don't see why ammo boxes would be mandatory - couldn't the HUD just take stock of how many rounds of whatever weapon the PC is using is currently in the inventory and display that?
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Sambojin

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Re: Design Rant : Inventory
« Reply #44 on: May 22, 2014, 18:24 »

Figured I'd throw in my 2c.

I like tetris systems. Loved them in Diablo, X-com, UFO:AI, in fact every game with them seems to be good. It's the micro-managey part of me coming out, that likes packing as much useful crap into the available space as the system allows. That said, I sort of thought that's what you'd like to avoid in JH.

So a few thoughts/questions:

Rather than specific types of ammo boxes, could you have generic ones, ammo pouches, with more being unlocked with traits/items? You can change the load-out of what ammo your pouches take as you want, but you'll still be ammo (and in a sense, weapon) limited. It would give another level of customization to characters.  Want a shotgun based character? Then all three initial pouches get set to pickup shells. Want a versatile one? Then 9mm/shell/plasma might be a handy loadout, but you'll have less total ammo for each type of weapon than the shotgun-only build would have. They'll undoubtedly be more common than specific boxes would be, but more useful as a character boost. Getting more pouches means more ammo for a specific weapon OR more versatility, but not both. Yet you can change what ammo they take on-the-fly should opportunities or circumstances dictate. It also gives you a weapon/sustainability/build progression option, without ever letting a "juggler of DOOM!" scenario come up (or having piles of ammo from the first few levels just looking for a use). It's limiting, but it lets you limit power-per-area fairly effectively, without forcing the player into a set character type. Of course, different ammo is larger or smaller per pouch used (similar to DoomRL's slot system). 10 rockets, 50 shells, 100 9mm for each pouch as an example.

When your character changes ammo types in any pouch, they literally will be throwing the ammo from that pouch away. Hopefully in a manner that will never let the enemy use it against them later (it's not recoverable because it's Space Marine Directive #402.4/b to never leave viable ammo around that the enemy may fire at you later. All excess ammunition that can not be stored, carried or equipped is to be rendered un-useable to prevent war materiel falling into enemy hands).

You can reload from lockers any weapon you're carrying, but you destroy any leftovers if you don't have pouches set to grab that ammo type (and have room for it in those pouches). This also gives different weapons of the same ammo type good uses regardless. A 50 round ammo capacity gun may be worth carrying just due to it's "ammo-slot" potential, rather than it's strict damage output. Which is a nice mechanic for uniques and specials. Or alternatively, it gives bulk mods a big side benefit of being able to be used asap (unless there's a specific assembly/whatever you want) for it's slotless ammo bonus.

Pouches could also be set-and-forget. Once you've determined the sort of ammo they take, you can't change it. Again, a balance issue. It'd almost put them in the power-up category, but would remove ammo micro-management entirely. I like the free-form idea more really, but "set-and-forget" is an option.

You could combine all of the above as well. Possibly even have different "levels" of ammo pouch. Some are just shell pouches. Some are big shell pouches. Some are alien shell pouches giving slightly better reload speed. Some are set-and-forget. Some are set-as-you-please. Some are needs-a-tech-mod-to-reset-them. A different form of micro-management, but cooler. Who knows? (yeah, well, chaosforge does, but they tend to). This might be making simplicity complicated, so I'd stick with a generic ammo pouch or set-and-forget for early builds.

(will edit more thoughts in soon. 1d weapon slots and traits, etc)
« Last Edit: May 22, 2014, 21:39 by Sambojin »
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