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Which kind of UI would you like?  

434 members have voted

  1. 1. Which visual style do you prefer?

    • Something with a solid feeling, like Baldur's Gate
      322
    • Thin and wiry, like NWN
      112
  2. 2. Is the ability to have multiple UI windows on screen important to you?

    • Yes
      182
    • No
      252
  3. 3. Do you want a mini- map in the same style as most modern RPGs?

    • Yes
      209
    • No
      225


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I would just like to say that a minimap has no place in a fixed angle, isometric game. The whole point of a minimap is to provide at a glance directional orientation to quest markers and surrounding landmarks - none of which are needed in this game.

A NWN or DA:O radar-style minimap zoomed in with vision cones has no place. But a mini-map like the ones used in RTS and MOBA games would make perfect sense. They are essentially the same control scheme as an isometric RPG: add pausing and rounds to Warcraft 3 and you'd pretty much have IE combat. The point of those mini-maps is to provide a map of the area that you can see without going into a menu, that you can use to move the camera instantly to any point on the map and that you can use to issue commands over a longer distance than the edge of the screen. No directional orientation or quest markers involved.

Edited by ogrezilla
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I would like to see more UIs like from Inquisitor, personally this one:

 

inquisitor_23.jpg

 

Like UIs which are very individual, in this screen especially health/mana/stamina bar.

 

That's a pretty cool one (though I still stand by my preference of the Baldur's Gate style). My problem with the thinner UIs isn't specifically that they are thin, but rather that I feel they are lacking in character -- I think this is a good example of something that doesn't take up particularly much space, but is still interesting and thematically appropriate.

knightofchaoss.jpg

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A NWN or DA:O radar-style minimap zoomed in with vision cones has no place. But a mini-map like the ones used in RTS and MOBA games would make perfect sense. They are essentially the same control scheme as an isometric RPG: add pausing and rounds to Warcraft 3 and you'd pretty much have IE combat. The point of those mini-maps is to provide a map of the area that you can see without going into a menu, that you can use to move the camera instantly to any point on the map and that you can use to issue commands over a longer distance than the edge of the screen. No directional orientation or quest markers involved.

However looking at the size of your generic IE map, the screenshot and expectations, do you really need a map showing you the other 3/4th you can easily scroll to anyway if you wanted to see full-size?

 

RTS maps have small units, large maps. They don't HAVE a full map like BG, PST, IWD. So of course mini-map makes sense. However if PE has a good view, a full-area map, do we really need yet another map layer inbetween? I too vote with "too much, not needed"...

^

 

 

I agree that that is such a stupid idiotic pathetic garbage hateful retarded scumbag evil satanic nazi like term ever created. At least top 5.

 

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A NWN or DA:O radar-style minimap zoomed in with vision cones has no place. But a mini-map like the ones used in RTS and MOBA games would make perfect sense. They are essentially the same control scheme as an isometric RPG: add pausing and rounds to Warcraft 3 and you'd pretty much have IE combat. The point of those mini-maps is to provide a map of the area that you can see without going into a menu, that you can use to move the camera instantly to any point on the map and that you can use to issue commands over a longer distance than the edge of the screen. No directional orientation or quest markers involved.

However looking at the size of your generic IE map, the screenshot and expectations, do you really need a map showing you the other 3/4th you can easily scroll to anyway if you wanted to see full-size?

 

RTS maps have small units, large maps. They don't HAVE a full map like BG, PST, IWD. So of course mini-map makes sense. However if PE has a good view, a full-area map, do we really need yet another map layer inbetween? I too vote with "too much, not needed"...

if the maps are even the size of icewind dale I would absolutely want it just for the control options it gives. Every time I backtrack through a cleared level its annoying to scroll to the other side instead of just clicking the map. Huge deal? Not really. I'll live if its not there, but I would definitely use it if it is.

 

And we have absolutely no idea how big the areas will be, do we?

Edited by ogrezilla
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I'd rather not go back to an IE UI just for the sake of it. The nostalgia is the gameplay itself and having a decent party size with good writing.

 

Trying to clone an IE game in all but name is not what we should be aiming for, at least that is my own opinion.

 

The IE UI's just all seem like they are crowding the game screen at low resolutions and look odd and out of place at high resolutions. Whether people like DAO or not I'd rather Obsidian at least consider adopting some of the more recent features of various game UI's, transparency being one of them.

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The Infinity Engine games' UIs did a good job of feeling like they were part of the world, but they had a lot of scaling issues. By Icewind Dale II, we had worked out most of the functional issues and I think a lot of people enjoyed having most of the major options at the bottom of the screen. But there's still a lot that could be improved.

 

The other big source of inspiration has been Temple of Elemental Evil, since that had an elegant UI that managed to handle a huge spectrum of D&D spells and abilities. I've also looked again at the UI for Dark Sun: Shattered Lands, since that had some nice context-sensitive UI elements that kept the screen mostly clear of icons while exploring. Finally, I've always liked Darklands' method of handling special interactions in the world, using a simple "ink" and "watercolor"-style image with descriptive text, almost like a mini choose-your-own-adventure.

 

source : http://www.gamebansh...iew/page-3.html

 

Emphasis mine, I feel that's really important.

 

DA:O UI looked like something out of an MMO, I wasn't a big fan. Wasn't very appealing visually either.

Edited by Karranthain
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The line directly after your emphasis also highlights the main reason why a lot of players feel the IE UI's are no longer good enough, the scaling left a pretty bad impression.

 

The IWD2 UI removed the UI bars on either side of the screen which many people considered a good move though for me it is still to blocky, scale that up to todays resolutions and it seems like overkill to have a bar that thick run all the way across the screen.

 

I could definately live with the ToEE UI with updated graphics:

 

http://samouchka.net/uploads/posts/2009-05/1242567857_4e26c6910af6.jpg

 

I'd rather not have the IWD2 UI or any IE UI.

 

I couldn't find a DS: SL screenshot that shows what Josh was getting at though I did find the following Darklands screenshot that seems like a precursor to the BG chapter narrations system of image with text. Both sound like decent systems.

 

http://www.abandonia.com/files/games/194/Darklands_5.png

http://www.myabandonware.com/media/captures/D/darklands/darklands_16.png

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Though to be fair, when IE UIs were designed, no one could've anticipated we'd playing those games in such high resolutions. That's something that could be avoided now.

 

I'm rather ambivalent about ToEE's UI - it's well done, but looks too modern, and fails to achieve (as quoted) the aim of feeling like they were part of the world (at least in my opinion).

 

Here's an example of an UI that does just that (previously posted in this topic) :

 

Kings_Bounty022.jpg

 

Disclaimer : I'm not advocating using the same (rather colourful) style, or even placing it at the bottom of the screen. It's just to illustrate my point.

Edited by Karranthain
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The line directly after your emphasis also highlights the main reason why a lot of players feel the IE UI's are no longer good enough, the scaling left a pretty bad impression.

 

The IWD2 UI removed the UI bars on either side of the screen which many people considered a good move though for me it is still to blocky, scale that up to todays resolutions and it seems like overkill to have a bar that thick run all the way across the screen.

 

I could definately live with the ToEE UI with updated graphics:

 

http://samouchka.net...e26c6910af6.jpg

 

I'd rather not have the IWD2 UI or any IE UI.

 

I couldn't find a DS: SL screenshot that shows what Josh was getting at though I did find the following Darklands screenshot that seems like a precursor to the BG chapter narrations system of image with text. Both sound like decent systems.

 

http://www.abandonia...Darklands_5.png

http://www.myabandon...arklands_16.png

 

Yes, the TOEE interface would be fine for me as well...Maybe they can have a frame toggle or Frame transparency slider as I attempted to show in the little mock-up I did for those in the crowd who like that aspect; whether aesthetic or nostalgic.

 

And yes, the action screens in Darklands were incredible especially because they aslo had dedicated music for each one (camping, studying, learning saints, etc.)

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I guess we all have our own very different opinions on what "feels like a part of the world". To me a UI like DAO makes me feel more a part of the world because the UI is less present and less in my face.

 

The UI you present above feels less like a part of the world to me because looking at the screen all I see is a big dashboard like I'm driving a car with the game world visible through window. It might be pretty to look at in its own right and the design might match the game worlds but it is still a dashboard and not part of the game world itself. No UI will do that unless you use a hide UI option but for me the more minimal the UI is the less obtrusive it is during gameplay.

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I guess we won't come up with something better than "it's a matter of taste".

 

And as for that example I have posted : like I've said, I'm not actually advocating using something that takes this much space, or is at the bottom etc. What I meant is that the UIs look should be consistent with the game world (hence the little ornamentations : scrolls, statues etc.). Skyrim, for an instance, is an example of how not to do it (at least for me; it looked like a phone interface).

Edited by Karranthain
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~hasn't read the thread yet~

 

 

 

Something modern, flexible and unobstructive.

 

The worst thing about the GUI in certain older RPGs is that it feels like it's in the way, ineffective, and taking up too much space on the screen.

 

That said, it doesn't have to use a minimalist design, like Dragon Age II did, as that tends to feel a bit unfitting for a fantasy-themed game.

 

EDIT: That said, the style should be more about texture and border styles than fitting unnecessary ornamental images into the GUI. Also, it should be kept in mind that buttons don't have to be squares, and could be shaped like gems and such.

Edited by JediMB

Something stirs within...

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I think that old style UI is part of the overall experience. Something like IWD2 would be perfect.

 

I personally thought between Baldurs gate and the First Icewind Dale, Icewind Dale 2 had way worse UI. Buttons were two small and it just was not quite as intuitive as the originals. Actually playing with the Icewind Dale 2 UI just annoys me after playing with BG2.

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the scaling left a pretty bad impression.

It's a little unfair to thrash an UI just cause it doesn't scale to 1920x1080 when the game's max was 1024x768. Like for example Deus Ex. Great UI, doesn't really work with modern resolutions.

 

Does that make it a bad UI? No it doesn't.

Let's see how good DA remains if used on a 4x as big as intended resolution. I am going to assume you're using the same "bad scaling" then.

 

So yeah, let's keep future or past resolutions out of the discussion and just base what we like on the merits of the UI. Not how well it passed time, giving 5 years old way more leeway than 12 year in an unfair way.

I could definately live with the ToEE UI with updated graphics:

 

http://samouchka.net...e26c6910af6.jpg

*clicks link*

 

OH MY GOD. That looks SO horrible. God no. No. No. NO.

I honestly have to tell that's the worst RPG UI I have seen so far in my life.

I personally thought between Baldurs gate and the First Icewind Dale, Icewind Dale 2 had way worse UI. Buttons were two small and it just was not quite as intuitive as the originals. Actually playing with the Icewind Dale 2 UI just annoys me after playing with BG2.

I agree. IWD2's interface was a big step back from the IE interfaces of BG/BG2/IWD1. A big step.

 

Character harder to keep an eye on? Check.

Less intuitive way to go to submenus like inventories? Check. Heck, check Adam's play of IWD2 and how many times he opened up the wrong menu. How often did that happen to you playing Baldur's Gate 2? I rest my case.

Worse position of combat log (and not being able to resize it, it seems). Check!

 

Overall, I didn't like it a bit.

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^

 

 

I agree that that is such a stupid idiotic pathetic garbage hateful retarded scumbag evil satanic nazi like term ever created. At least top 5.

 

TSLRCM Official Forum || TSLRCM Moddb || My other KOTOR2 mods || TSLRCM (English version) on Steam || [M4-78EP on Steam

Formerly known as BattleWookiee/BattleCookiee

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the scaling left a pretty bad impression.

It's a little unfair to thrash an UI just cause it doesn't scale to 1920x1080 when the game's max was 1024x768. Like for example Deus Ex. Great UI, doesn't really work with modern resolutions.

 

Does that make it a bad UI? No it doesn't.

Let's see how good DA remains if used on a 4x as big as intended resolution. I am going to assume you're using the same "bad scaling" then.

 

So yeah, let's keep future or past resolutions out of the discussion and just base what we like on the merits of the UI. Not how well it passed time, giving 5 years old way more leeway than 12 year in an unfair way.

I could definately live with the ToEE UI with updated graphics:

 

http://samouchka.net...e26c6910af6.jpg

*clicks link*

 

OH MY GOD. That looks SO horrible. God no. No. No. NO.

I honestly have to tell that's the worst RPG UI I have seen so far in my life.

I personally thought between Baldurs gate and the First Icewind Dale, Icewind Dale 2 had way worse UI. Buttons were two small and it just was not quite as intuitive as the originals. Actually playing with the Icewind Dale 2 UI just annoys me after playing with BG2.

I agree. IWD2's interface was a big step back from the IE interfaces of BG/BG2/IWD1. A big step.

 

Character harder to keep an eye on? Check.

Less intuitive way to go to submenus like inventories? Check. Heck, check Adam's play of IWD2 and how many times he opened up the wrong menu. How often did that happen to you playing Baldur's Gate 2? I rest my case.

Worse position of combat log (and not being able to resize it, it seems). Check!

 

Overall, I didn't like it a bit.

 

I totally agree with this, it's just worrisome a bit because I thought I heard one of the developers saying that the IWD 2 UI was good and I think it's pretty much horrible.

 

I'm not to worried though, I'm sure they will come up with something awesome. As long as its intuitive, easy to use and fits the look of the game I'll be happy. A bad UI though is one quick way to make a game not that enjoyable.

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I'm firmly in the minimalist UI design camp. I thought the UIs in both dragon ages were good (although they could pull out the minimap and replace the terrible portraits and health/stamina bars) and replaying the old IE games I just couldn't get used to how much screen space the UI takes up.

 

Don't much like the looks of the ToEE UI, particularly the neon colours. IWD 2 was okay I guess. I personally liked how they downsized all the inv, spellbook buttons since I always use the hotkeys for them anyways. Still much too chunky for my tastes though.

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Put everything in a frame. The UI shouldn't be blocking my view of the in-game environment.

 

That screenshot is pretty - I'd rather not have to peer around a floating UI element to see it.

how does blocking more environment with a frame help that? A frame blocks your view of more in-game environment than floating UI elements would.

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