Jump to content
RedSocialKnight

I can't see ****! Pls make combat clearer

Recommended Posts

One legitimate criticism of the combat in this game is that you often can't tell what the **** is going on. A few ideas that might help clear things up a bit:

 

Turn spell effects off on pause

 

I spend a lot of time with the screen on pause squinting through the haze of a spell effect trying to see who is standing where -- clicking on circles to see whose portrait flashes, etc.

 

Do spell effects and assorted sparklies function as a single visual layer that could be set to toggle off when combat is paused? That would help a lot.

 

Still more helpful would be a function that toggled between the effects and AoE markers -- the same as you see when targetting a spell.

 

Clearer markers for status effects

 

Another nice upgrade would be visual effects signalling combat states, especially status effects. Time and time again I've wondered why it's been five seconds and my guy hasn't cast a spell yet, only to check and see the tiny icon -- in a column of other tiny icons, so many of them that some are pushed out of sight at the bottom of the column -- showing that he's stunned.

 

It would be great to have a character's whole model clearly show status effects with a color change -- a stunned character could be blue from head to toe. This could be something that toggles on and off with pause as well.

 

Separating buff and debuff icons

 

My characters have buffs up all the time. Pallegina always has her accuracy modal going, and then there's Kana and Durance -- so I always have a string of icons running most of the way down the right side of the portraits.

 

This means I don't really notice the debuff icons when they appear -- again, I have to pause and squint (and often click the little arrow to expand the list when there are too many icons to fit on the portrait).

 

A really simple solution: put positive status effect icons on one side of the portrait, and negative status icons on the other. That way the icons could be bigger, and it would be immediately obvious when something pops up in the "bad" column.

 

Greater zoom range

 

I'm not sure why the limit on the zoom range is so narrow. The environments are beautiful, and having the ability to get in close would sometimes help to clarify the tangle of combat. I know this would be very easy to change: someone on Steam already posted a way to increase the range with console commands, and it's a really nice quality of life boost.

 

These are just ideas that popped into my head as a way to make combat easier to navigate -- other solutions would be fine, but I think it is a problem in search of solutions.

Edited by RedSocialKnight
  • Like 18

DID YOU KNOW: *Missing String*

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good idea I think with buffs and debuffs being on opposite sides. It would be a lot clearer. Closer zoom would be handy and also outlines for character models when they're behind walls.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can see status effects a lot easier if you put your cursor over the character (although I understand you said you sometimes find it hard to locate the character due to the spell effects).

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Closer zoom would certainly help, and it sounds like the easiest way to improve things. Is that mod-able?

 

Another idea would be to just highlight the 3D model of a character when you click on their portrait in the UI. Either an outline around the edge, or just a brighter glow so it would stand out from the group. That should probably be an optional setting, since some players might prefer not to see that. Or add a key binding to modify the mouse click, like Alt-click to highlight, or something.

 

I agree about debuffs being hard to see next to the portraits. Separating icons on each side might work, but it would require spacing out the portraits horizontally to make more room.

 

Another way to do it, would be to have debuffs appear lined up inside  the portraits, along that same edge. Buffs on the outside, debuffs over the portrait edge, probably with a black background so they could be clearly seen. You'd really notice that, I think, and there would be an incentive to "clean up" the portrait.

 

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a (crappy and stupid) modern trend to make the UI as small as possible, which is why we have those tiny char portraits and the super tiny status effect icons. It's especially disappointing after Obsidian had the right idea with NWN2's vast amount of hotbars. They should also have stolen the custom char ring colors idea from BG:EE to help you find specific chars more easily.

 

-"Turn spell effects off on pause"

Yes, either turning them off or making them vastly less opaque on pause would help.

 

"Clearer markers for status effects"

Any time a char has any effect that makes them unable to act, this effect should be VERY clearly displayed on top the character portrait along with a timer, not hidden among the ****loads of other effects.

 

"Separating buff and debuff icons"

Yes pls.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another idea would be to just highlight the 3D model of a character when you click on their portrait in the UI. Either an outline around the edge, or just a brighter glow so it would stand out from the group. 

 

Another way to do it, would be to have debuffs appear lined up inside  the portraits, along that same edge. Buffs on the outside, debuffs over the portrait edge, probably with a black background so they could be clearly seen. You'd really notice that, I think, and there would be an incentive to "clean up" the portrait.

 

Yes. These are both great ideas.


DID YOU KNOW: *Missing String*

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can see status effects a lot easier if you put your cursor over the character (although I understand you said you sometimes find it hard to locate the character due to the spell effects).

 

With too many they stop showing up ..

 

 

I agree with OP about everything, those things can just make the experience playing better :)

Edited by endruwiggin

what_can_cb510.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1. IE mod allows for more zoom in. Combat I like .7 where games nearest is 1.

2. Like idea of buffs/debuffs separated, however as mentioned you can see all on tool-tip of character.

3. Damage #'s, they should never be on same row. As they happen they should always move down a row and then straddle left right in succession, would be easier to read.

4. Things like Blunderbuss in combat log don't show damage #'s just things like 1 hit, 2 graze, 1 crit, 1 miss.

5. No problem with options to remove effects on pause.

7. Another thing on IE mod I made the circles much fatter, easier to spot the flashing white/green circle when selected.

8. I think I would like big-head, again for spotting bunched up characters if it were 2x or 3x size, not 10x.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Greater zoom range

 

I'm not sure why the limit on the zoom range is so narrow. The environments are beautiful, and having the ability to get in close would sometimes help to clarify the tangle of combat. I know this would be very easy to change: someone on Steam already posted a way to increase the range with console commands, and it's a really nice quality of life boost.

 

These are just ideas that popped into my head as a way to make combat easier to navigate -- other solutions would be fine, but I think it is a problem in search of solutions.

 

You mean zooming in closer?

 

You can with the IE mod, BUT the 2D backgrounds become very pixelated at anything closer than around .75 zoom level (which is the default min distance).  They chose .75 for a good reason, but feel free to experiment. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spell Effects are been getting really bad in games lately, especially between this and DA:I. Just because you CAN do awesome spell doesnt mean you should. Less is more. I would like to see if you TAB during a battle you can clearly see the outlines of the figures of each person (friends and enemies), some time it is really hard to see that one person is knocked on the feet amid all the spell effects and shinyness

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This has been an area of discontent since the early beta. Things have improved slightly with better combat UI, but the problem of overblown spell effects and poor visibility still plague the game.

 

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/67653-combat-readability-analysis-graphics/

 

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/77313-selected-character-highlight/

 

http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/75109-the-only-serious-problem-i-have-with-poe/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree with the OP.  In tougher fights where you really need to micro every party action until the outcome is not up for grabs, seeing what the hell is happening and who is where is really hard to do in the current system.  Usually the selection circles stand out, but many times you cant tell who/what is represented by that circle until you mouse over it.  And there are times when even seeing the selection circles is tough.

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Along these lines, I would like it if Big Head Mode had a slider. Right now the big heads are really useful for figuring out who is where, but they are so big that they can get in the way of seeing what's going on, so a happy medium would be nice.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Along these lines, I would like it if Big Head Mode had a slider. Right now the big heads are really useful for figuring out who is where, but they are so big that they can get in the way of seeing what's going on, so a happy medium would be nice.

 

No! The solution to visibility isn't to turn on a novelty feature.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing I personally hate is the Gate in the stronghold and everything like it. 

You have no idea of the combat going under it, all you see are various circles. 

 

They should have made those area's fade to disappear so you can see what is going on underneath it. 

Edited by draek
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a (crappy and stupid) modern trend to make the UI as small as possible, which is why we have those tiny char portraits and the super tiny status effect icons. It's especially disappointing after Obsidian had the right idea with NWN2's vast amount of hotbars. They should also have stolen the custom char ring colors idea from BG:EE to help you find specific chars more easily.

 

-"Turn spell effects off on pause"

Yes, either turning them off or making them vastly less opaque on pause would help.

 

"Clearer markers for status effects"

Any time a char has any effect that makes them unable to act, this effect should be VERY clearly displayed on top the character portrait along with a timer, not hidden among the ****loads of other effects.

 

"Separating buff and debuff icons"

Yes pls.

 

I think toning down the spell effects in general is the solution, though may require more work. Some spells have multiple visual effects that are completely obtrusive and unecessary. As some quick examples:

  • I have no idea why the Paladin's flames of devotion is so bright and overbearing for a single hit ability. It pretty much overwhelms the paladin and characters around him when he uses it, making them quite hard to make out.
  • Wall of flame is a nightmare when it comes to visibility - often obstructing the whole battle.
  • The lighting on many spells is just way too exaggerated, completely washing out the characters environment and making them indescernible.
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The camera angle being too low when you are outside and the lack of 'see through mode' for walls and trees. These two things add considerably to the difficulty of seeing what is going on in combat.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel like the SFX should highlight the potential danger and significance of the effect:

 

Stun and confusion effects should be clearly visible. Very dangerous debuffs aswell. Stationary AoE effects like storm gusts should also be more visible, whereas effects that you can not really counter should be tuned down. A LOT.

 

It makes no sense that single target damaging abilities have such flashy effects and spells that require the player to react are often almost invisible. It feels like the SFX design was made from a lore-perspective, not from the gameplay perspective. This, however, is a no-go in tactical combat games.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My main issue with combat not being clear enough is not seeing easily which character of the party is which one on the battlefield.

 

I could see two ways to improve that :

 

1. Colored circles, like in the EE version of IE games, each party member having his own color.

 

2. Much more visible highlight of the currently selected character.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As long as the circles are never obscured in combat, everything is dandy. At the moment, the circles can be obscrued by all manner of things, so when the overblown spell effects fly, you can't even make out the circles sometimes as a bare minimum. They need to work on the occlusion or sorting of UI graphics I think.

  • Like 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I noticed that as soon as combat has spellcasters on both sides I don't have a clue what is happening. I have it set to autopause on each spell/ability completion (which btw does not work for monk abilities but for some reason works for Bash ability of the Shield that Eder uses as a passive ability!?!?!), and that autopause is only thing that makes the game workable. I just unpause and wait until next pause and for that 1-2 seconds the screen is full of effects and **** going on and nobody has a clue what is happening until it pauses again.

 

This game really needed turn based, RTwP is terrible in PoE.

Edited by archangel979
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Along these lines, I would like it if Big Head Mode had a slider. Right now the big heads are really useful for figuring out who is where, but they are so big that they can get in the way of seeing what's going on, so a happy medium would be nice.

 

No! The solution to visibility isn't to turn on a novelty feature.

 

 

I gotta be honest; as soon as I heard about big head mode, I knew I was going to have it on all the time, for exactly this reason. And I was right. But it still isn't enough; my chars are usually too clustered. I end up waving my cursor back and forth over a portrait, while staring at the combat, searching for a flickering green circle. Maybe, like Justinian said, a head size *slider*, so they wouldn't get in the way of each other as much.

 

EDIT: Also, I wonder if allowing the color selection to affect equipped armor would be helpful (maybe as a toggle option, since some people might not like that much divergence from IE aesthetic/realism).

Edited by ksagan

Share this post


Link to post
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.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
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.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...