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Posts posted by Waywocket


    Problem: Game is running in full-screen, I have two monitors, if I move the mouse to the edge of the screen that is next to the 2nd monitor the mouse moves out of the game window and the game does not scroll.


    Expected: Mouse is locked to the PoEt window so scrolling works correctly on all screen edges.


    Ideally the mouse should lock to the game window when exploring but allow movement outside the window once menus are open, since this does not allow scrolling the map edge anyway. This would make using other programs when the game is in windowed mode much more pleasant.


    That would be ideal. For the moment, note that you can scroll the viewport by dragging with the middle mouse button.


    I'm pretty sure that in Baldur's Gate (if not, then it must have been some similar game), when you order your party to move, double-clicking on the destination will centre the screen on that point. That would be a great addition partly because it would help to ameliorate this issue, and partly because I'm so used to it that I find myself doing it automatically and getting very slightly disappointed every time :).

  2. I've come across a few issues with text rendering. Two of them can be seen in the 'item info' screenshot:


    First, the fancy initial capital isn't drawn in the right place, causing it to overlap the text.


    Second, all of the text (seemingly everywhere in game, not just item descriptions as in the screenshot) is very blurred. It looks kind of like it was rendered to a texture at a lower resolution and then scaled up. After a while it starts to get very tiring on the eyes.


    (This part incorrect, see edit)

    Third, so far as I can tell, the text size slider doesn't currently affect anything. I'm not sure if it's supposed to, or if it's not yet implemented, but the text seems so large that I wonder if the blurriness is actually because it's being displayed at twice the intended size. This is particularly the case in the dialogue screen.


    It may or may not be relevant, but I play at 2560x1600.


    Edit: Correction, the text size slider does work, sorry. It's just that the range of sizes is narrow enough that I didn't notice the difference at first without seeing them next to each other. The first bug seems to present itself when the text size is set to less than 100%.


    I feel like this was designed to be played from a large distance, as at 100% the dialogue text is actually bigger than most console games, where text is expected to be read from the sofa.


    Further edit: This forum software seems to scale down images? The originals were far larger than they've come out in the post.




  3. Requests like the OP's are poison, and the fools that make them poisonous.


    Any developer making a game which stores its saves - or an application that stores its settings - in the installation directory deserves to be publicly shot.


    That is all.


    I hope you understand the effort it took me to be this astoundingly polite; the rage this thread has induced in me makes me want to go out and eat some puppies.

    • Like 2
  4. 2-There was no minimap in the IE games. There was a full screen interactive map.


    A semantic error on my part. I was referring to the full screen map where you can see your party move, and click through to locations. I love this feature.

    That was indeed very good.

    Also, the ability to set waypoints and not simply set the final destination really helped with the limited pathfinding.



  5. Talking of "right," other players than those who are fond of dungeon-crawler play-style have the right to play the game with the balance which is intended by the designers, too. Here, different from Torment, they have Sawyer in their team. I think his records are good enough to leave him at the helm of game-balancing. After all, we are talking of a game whose system design is going to be done by Sawyer & Cain.


    I don't know why you think only dungeon crawlers would like to get XP for defeating monsters. For me it's the complete opposite; I tend to go for non-combat options where possible since I don't really enjoy enormous amounts of combat, so if it doesn't give XP I'll inevitably spend the whole game avoiding it wherever possible as it's just a waste of time.

  6. Since we are shipping computer parts, we can't ship outside the USA with this one


    Not that it affects me personally, since I can't afford that tier (plus they sold out in about 12 minutes anyway), but can anyone explain this - why can't non-US backers just add extra for the shipping?


    Also, would you mind telling us what software was used for those renderings, out of interest?

    • Like 1
  7. The complaints that some players will then do both seems bizarre - you don't have to give them that XP twice.

    How does this work? Suppose there is XP for killing. You're given a quest: protect the village from the bandits. You go to the bandits and convince them not to attack the village anymore (100 XP gained for completing the quest). Then you kill all the bandits (10 bandits * 5 XP = 50 XP). Afterwards, you return to the village and, hey, free XP: you kill everyone there as well, gaining additional 25 XP.


    The "accomplishment XP only" is designed to not reward this kind of behavior. You can still do it if you're roleplaying a psychopath, but you're not rewarded for this.


    In this example, it would be trivial to flag those bandits as no longer worth XP once you've persuaded them not to attack. Sure you can come up with examples that aren't so trivial, but in most cases there'll be a solution which goes 90% of the way to solving the problem. It's not going to be perfect, at least not without adding a heap of unnecessary complexity, but it doesn't really need to be.


    Fundamentally, getting XP for defeating monsters is one of the most core mechanics in RPG systems since forever. Making games that use radically different systems certainly isn't inherently bad, but doesn't seem appropriate for a project which is specifically aiming for a traditional feel.

    • Like 2
  8. Rabain,

    In a battle the whole point is to eliminate the threat. Once someone is out of action, they are no longer an active threat. After the battle, the victors have plenty of time to go around and finish off their opponents.


    Try turning this around. If you, as a player, have been whaling on some target with the intention of killing them, then they fall unconscious, would you then leave them and focus on the next target? I sure as hell wouldn't - I'd make damn sure they're not getting back up again.


    This feels quite a lot like a LARP system - 'hit points' are typically low in number, so a few proper hits that land will put the target on the deck, where it's relatively easy to finish them off. What you end up seeing is that players will systematically execute everything they kill unless there's literally someone hitting them with an axe right now; it's the only sensible option. Monsters on the other hand will have all been briefed never to execute a player while they're down, unless there's some plot-specific reason, on extremely rare occasions, because that makes for better gameplay given the system - but it does feel quite silly quite often.

    • Like 1
  9. The point is to balance xp reward for players who don't necessarily want to slaughter everything in sight towards a quest goal in order to level. Traditionally, due to xp value per mobs, that also meant that those who did kill got significantly more xp than someone who used stealth or even dialogue options. Now, with the back-loaded xp upon quest completion, that means more options for completion (even more replayability, more RP possibility).


    The baby does not need to be thrown out with that bathwater. It's perfectly possible to set the XP reward for solving a problem non-violently to a value which makes up for the difference.


    The complaints that some players will then do both seems bizarre - you don't have to give them that XP twice.

    • Like 1
  10. I have to say, I never really noticed loading screens in the Infinity Engine except when transitioning between major areas (ie a party-required transition, where you get an autosave).


    The computer I was using at the time was below the minimum specs for BG2, and just slightly above the minimum for BG1 (I had 32MB of RAM), so major area transitions took ages, but just going in and out of a building was pretty much instant so far as I can recall.


    Was this a major problem for other people?

  11. It's similar in Germany. However, if there is written retailers invoice (they have accepted order confirmations e-mails that include the amount charged to my credit card), that counts as proof of price. However, that's the thing, since this is not a buy/sell process, I wonder how it will work. Technically Obsidian could write 20 $ on the box, but they will still want to see a document with the price I paid, and that would be a 180 $ credit card bill then (or whichever is your tier) ...


    That bill doesn't specify exactly what it's for though, just that it's a payment to Kickstarter, and you could honestly say that that payment was for the goods in question plus a number of other digital goods - you 'bought' multiple things, and this is one of them.


    If, as someone in this thread mentioned, Obsidian label the package with the cost of the physical materials, that's honest, legally legit, and sensible - I can't see that customs would have room to complain there.


    Or if it comes to it, they could work out a cost break-down and provide an itemised bill that shows a sensible value for the physical goods, and that you could give as evidence.


    Personally I'm not too upset at the idea of paying customs charges per se (though I think it's an inequitable tax), but I would be very upset at having to pay based on the total pledged amount, because that really isn't what I paid for - the physical package truly, honestly isn't worth that.


    Does anyone have any experience of importing something where the cost of a package doesn't correspond 1:1 with a payment made? Say as part of a subscription with a one-time cost perhaps? I'm trying to think of other situations where this issue might arise.

  12. Customs isn't going to care much about your opinion, if your package gets inspected, they will look up the general value of the goods online/against a list to determine its price. You can, of course, appeal, but the law wouldn't be on your side. Customs would hold your package until the fee is paid, or destroy it if it's not.


    My experience with this sort of thing (in the UK at least) is that you get the package, and then they send you an extra bill two weeks later. And that's how I learned about customs charges.

  13. Eh. I'm no lawyer but ti doesn't take much to figure that promising x in exchange for money and reneging on x is tantamount to fraud.


    Yes and no. There are a lot of KS project where a donation really is just a donation.


    If there's a reward specified for a particular tier though, that has to be honoured; since all the game projects so far have promised copies for donations above some minimal amount, that effectively means they need to complete the project. For projects where the rewards are something other than the finished product (there are a lot of these in other categories), their only requirement is to fulfil those rewards, not necessarily the project itself.


    (I realise that's not incompatible with what you wrote; I don't want to contradict, just clarify.)

  14. I find that platforms with high DPI handle lower DPI content pretty well. Sure, you can take advantage of it if you want, but the percentage of people with Retina Macbooks or those Samsung high DPI laptops is quite low, even amongst gamers. Only a minority of web designers are going to be concerned about the iPad 3 hits they're getting, because low dpi sites work just fine for most purposes on the iPad 3.

    This is exactly the point I'm arguing against. We shouldn't look at today's market if we want the game to be future proofed. Yes, "retina" or "high dpi" screens are rare, because they have just entered the market. 1080p HDTVs were rare when they were first introduced too, but today no one would ever consider watching a VHS over a BluRay.


    The IE games have aged well because their areas were, for the time, rendered at very high resolutions, and DPI hasn't changed much since then. But it is changing now. Rapidly. At the end of this month, Windows 8 and an army of reasonably priced 1080p 11" screens are being unleashed on the market. By 2014, it'll have started to be widely adapted.


    It's hard to realize how terrible old 2D games can look at these screens without having actually seen it. When you have, you will spend two hours, like me, writing a post like this, to try to convince people of the importance of this :).


    This is definitely a valid point - in fact, I was taking it as a given that the backgrounds would be rendered at a high enough resolution to look decent on screens at 300dpi or so.


    However, there's no good reason things need to look quite so bad as they do. If you think about it, on a screen at (say) 17", the picture quality should never get worse as you increase the DPI. The image features aren't getting any less detailed; as you increase the DPI and scale the image to the same physical size, all that should happen is that you're not getting the value of the higher DPI screen.


    Sadly, the image scalers in today's screens are terrible. In particular, they're optimised for video, with relatively few high-frequency features and the assumption that the viewer is a fair distance away, so the scaler performs smoothing. A lot of smoothing. Looking at photographs or watching videos using these scalers doesn't look too bad, but as soon as you have any text or sharp edges it turns into a mess, as we've all seen. If you do the upscaling in software it can look dramatically better though, and there's no technical reason monitors can't scale far better than they do. BTW some graphics cards give you the option to do scaling on the card and send the result at the monitor's native resolution, and that can look a bit better than letting the monitor do its own scaling (plus might reduce input lag).


    I'm hopeful that this problem can be improved at both ends - on the one hand by producing new content with sufficient resolution to make optimal use of higher DPI screens than we're used to, and on the other hand improving the methods used to render lower resolution content so that it at least doesn't look any worse than on the screen it was designed for.


    Alas, I was hopeful a decade ago that we'd all be using 300dpi screens all the time by now, so I fully expect my hopes to be dashed once again.

    • Like 2
  15. There is really no excuse for pathfinding issues given the ability of modern computers. The first algorithms for such were created decades ago, and ones from even 2 decades have at worst a computational time proportional to the number of vortexes, with some considerably less.


    Yeah, the actual pathfinding itself is basically a solved problem; I did a lot of research around six or seven years ago and the state of the art as of then is easily good enough to navigate a maze in a microsecond on hardware that can fit in a wristwatch. The difficulty is the AI for multiple entities which have to work together.


    There's really no reason why all of the problems mentioned in this thread couldn't be pretty easily fixed though - I suspect it's never been a high priority, especially given that party-based games haven't been too common of late.


    For example, archers blocking doorways is obviously a low-hanging-fruit type of problem - you could have the combat AI when equipped with a ranged weapon try to keep at least a minimum distance from the target and move to the relevant part of the arc which offers LoS, as opposed to the traditional method of just going towards the target until you get to LoS.


    (To elaborate on that: say Alice is ordered to attack Bob with a weapon that has range 20. Draw a circle with radius 20 around Bob. Colour in the sections of that circle that have LoS on Bob. Is Alice in that coloured area? If yes, you're done. If no, then it's been reduced to a straightforward pathfinding problem - find the shortest path that takes Alice into the coloured area; bonus points for weighting it to keep the distance from the target as high as possible. I have more specific ideas on how exactly to do that, but this has gone on long enough :p.

    Baldur's Gate on the other hand just does: do you have LoS? If not, move in the direction of the target until you do. The point where you do is generally the doorway.)

  16. Zoom back to when you first visited Beregost in BG I and went into a tavern.


    Creepy - that is the exact moment in my life that I flash back to whenever I think about ambience and atmosphere in gaming. Well that and the previous five minutes of seeing Beregost for the first time, at night.


    Up until that point I hadn't really been enjoying Baldur's Gate; the mechanics were complicated and full of traps for the unwary, and I spent the first couple of attempts at the game getting one-shotted by assassins in Candlekeep (my 4 HP and one magic missile per day not a match for a sword that does 1d6), but the incredible atmosphere of the arrival in Beregost was what suddenly made me love the game. I think that's the most significant gaming experience I've ever had, due in large part to truly excellent sound design.

  17. This post is complete nonsense almost in its entirety. Pretty much the only valid point is that specialised installers are generally a bad idea, but using standardised packaging methods are the solution to that problem, and to equate those two things is a grotesque mischaracterisation.


    Way to take a critical view of your favorite platform. :facepalm:

    FWIW, Windows is my favourite platform. Certainly for games anyway.

    A deb or rpm package is the moral equivalent of a tarball, plus a manifest that allow the package manager to know what files have been put where, so it can do things like uninstalling, upgrading, and checking that no other package tries to overwrite those files. A package can also specify that it depends on some other software, typically libraries that are dynamically linked into the application, and it can specify the version(s) that it requires. When you try installing a package and it produces dependency errors, that means that the package in question declares a dependency on something you don't have. If you just had a tarball, that wouldn't magically make the dependency go away; it would just mean that you don't know about it until you try to run the program and it crashes.


    In ten years, will you be the first in line explaining to each and everyone of the linux users how to extract the game from the debs and rpms they purchased when package names change and both dpkg and rpm can't find the dependencies? No? Maybe tarballs with dependencies included aren't a bad idea after all... A little common sense practicality now will make everyone's future enjoyment of the game that much easier.


    (BTW glibc has never broken backward compatibility, nor has the deb format TTBOMK; I'd be very surprised if rpm ever has.)


    As an exercise in awesome, try installing and playing any of the games Loki software ported on a modern distribution, xlib and libc errors galore. For extra awesome: try extracting the source from any src.rpm from Fedora 17 with the rpm in Cent 5 (and vice-versa, of course). It's fun, you should try it sometime.


    Did you even read any of what I wrote? Did you understand any of it? I don't understand how you can make exactly the same mistakes again.

  18. This is because they can't change the description for each tier once the KS has started.

    They definitely added the book to the $50,- pledge, if not more, so that's complete rubbish.


    Before badmouthing someone, you should make really sure that you're correct. The $50 tier was added later.


    I hope you now deservedly feel like an idiot.



  19. The screenshot is gorgeous, its details compete with all the latest videogames. Just two questions:


    1- Don't you think the player will miss being able to rotate the camera?


    I for one am extremely pleased that you can't rotate the camera, because I've never seen a game where the addition of that 'optional' feature didn't induce developers to design areas where you actually need to (DA:O, I'm looking at you in particular).

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