Jump to content

Some quick suggestions and impressions


Recommended Posts



I just downloaded the Windows demo and gave it a bit of a try. I quite like it so far. I'm playing it in Windows 7.


There's a few things that are UI-related that I think could be improved slightly, to just make the game a bit more polished.


* a hotkey to lock/unlock the camera to a particular character would be useful.

* I'd love to see a 'click and hold to follow the cursor' approach to navigation, but that may not be in the cards at this point.

* a hotkey to highlight items that can be interacted with, with floating text labels would be fabulous. It's especially annoying to have to always hit 'i' or 'g' to see if there's anything to pick up. This is made more grievous by the fact that these hotkeys aren't in an easy-to-access row, ie: QWER or ASDF. Yes, I know you can change these, but this brings me to my next point...

* hotkey assignments for 'Select Key'? Why are these assigned from A-Z?? Since at this stage I'm completely unaware of how often these get used, or even their function in the game, I'm loathe to overwrite them. If this is like most RPGs and you collect a bunch of keys over the course of the game (and that's what these hotkeys are for), if we have this many in our inventory, why doesn't the game put all keys on a keyring and auto-use the correct key? This seems to be busywork for the sake of completely unneeded complexity. That's kind of complexity doesn't make a game fun, just tedious.

* This brings me my final hotkey-related gripe. If I hit 'i' to open my inventory (or whatever I have it set to), I should be able to just hit it again to close it. Forcing me to cick the checkmark is annoying. This should go for all hotkeys - g, c (for character), etc etc.

* This isn't a big deal, but it would make the game look lots better if the edge tile of the shadow graphic - the 'fog of war', if you will - that shifts as you walk around was a gradient rather than a hard-edge. It would look more like an organic shadow, imo.

* Leading for text, or for people not familiar with print terms, line spacing. It's just a bit off. I'm using 1280x720 and the text is quite crammed together. I'd rather see a slightly smaller font with a little bit more space for the text to breathe, for pretty much all dialogs.

* Some resolutions aren't available? This isn't a huge deal, but for some reason I couldn't play in 1360x768, which is my desktop res. I went down to 1280x720 instead so that I could read the text on my LCDTV.

* I'd like right-click to do ... something. On my character, perhaps it could open my inventory. On my character's portrait, perhaps lock the camera. On the ground, perhaps I could pan the camera. This would be useful.


These are *nitpicks*, not just criticisms for the sake of it. It's clearly a great game and a labor of love and I'm just trying to point out the areas where I think more polish will help the game.


In case you think I'm just being mean, which I'm really not trying to be, here's my positive thoughts on it.


* I think the graphics are fabulous. Clean, detailed and interesting. It's also very consistent throughout - from the UI to the menus to the dialogs, which is very nice.

* The exploration mixed with text adventure mixed with party-based RPG mechanics seems really cool. I've not played any other Spiderweb games, but I'm really digging this.

* The music is great, and I think I'd even like more of it ingame. Since there's no voiceover and relatively few sound FX, more music is a good thing. Maybe the music gets more predominant over time - I'd really like to see the tracks change as you enter battle.

* The writing is fabulous, with intelligent dialog, imo.

* I think the battle system will get very interesting with several people in your party. Quite looking forward to that.

* I bought the game after trying it for about 20 minutes. smile


I've read Jeff's blog for a little while now and really like that he's succeeding as a small developer among giants. I'm inspired that he's doing what he loves and making a living at it. Hopefully I'll be able to do that one day also.


Here's a question for the community and perhaps Jeff: how easy would it be to trigger voiceovers if a few people took it upon themselves to record voices for some, if not all of the texts? Is this possible?


Another odd question: would it be possible to 'fake' a depth of field effect for the shadowed areas? I'm assuming you're using OpenGL here, but I'm not positive... Perhaps you could apply a blur effect to the shadowed areas, kind of like how they do in this PS tutorial: http://www.photoshopessentials.com/photo-effects/depth-of-field/ Or even to apply it just to the outer corners of the screen might give it an interesting look.


Just ideas...


Thanks for the great game and community...



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jeff has expressed pretty strong opposition to background music in the past, so that's probably not going to happen. I'm not really sure as concerns your other questions.


I'd recommend playing some of Jeff's other recent games, as well. The interface gets gradually clunkier as one goes back in time, but anything from Geneforge 4 onward is pretty much Avadon with a different skill system and no junk bag. I'm a big fan of G4 and A6, personally.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm always turning off music when I play computer games, so I'm really glad that Jeff doesn't use it on his. Especially since he uses ambient sounds, which I LOVE! As much as it would be cool, we don't have soundtracks for real life, so I think to get proper role playing background music kind of ruins the roleplay.


I like the voice suggestion. That could be cool.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally Posted By: jetcitywoman
we don't have soundtracks for real life,

As soon as they develop it, I'm signing up. Seriously, if I could pipe music directly into my brain, instead of bothering with speakers and earphones and so on, I would.

But I do agree with you about computer game music, it's never anything I want to listen to, I'll put something else on to listen if I want background music.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

One annoyance I have found is that there is no way to close the inventory screen without clicking that little green arrow in the corner.


I see you picked up on that too, when clicking "I" again it should close the inventory, I agree.


Since you have to deal with the inventory a lot in this game it does get annoying.


It would have been nice if there was a hot key or some additional way to close the inventory screen rather than having to click on that bottom corner.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally Posted By: Geneforgeisformeyukkyu
Closing the window with esc is still more work than just pressing 'I' or 'g' again.

I actually find that the escape and enter keys are more conveniently located than "i" and "g," so I have to disagree with your claim. You may find the "i" and "g" keys preferable, but it's not universal.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...