UI/controls - enhancements

Talk about the mods or features you'd like to see in Daggerfall Unity. Give mod creators some ideas!
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BansheeXYZ
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Joined: Fri Oct 23, 2015 8:19 pm

Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by BansheeXYZ » Tue Dec 10, 2019 3:30 pm

mikeprichard wrote:
Tue Dec 10, 2019 9:57 am
I did see that very nice recently added new option, and it is now my default! For me, it would still be better to have a full alternative to the Modes themselves, but in the meantime, being able to see when you're about to pickpocket someone instead of just talk to them is a major improvement. Great to see much-needed QoL features like this continue to be added to breathe new life into Daggerfall.
My only gripe is that users still have to dig for it. If it's clearer and will prevent accidental pickpockets, why is it buried in a slider with 10 other options? It's not like the grab hand gets shown in the middle of your screen all the time. Are we just finding it hard to remove prior work or is there a real usage case for other placement types?

Also, here's some documentation on what each mode does:

Mobile NPC:
Talk: Talks
Grab: Talks
Info: Talks
Steal: Steals

Static NPC:
Talk: Talks
Grab: Talks
Info: Informs
Steal: Talks

Door:
Talk: Grabs
Grab: Grabs
Info: Grabs (when locked, gives an extra message about store/guild hours)
Steal: Grabs

Building Walls:
Talk: Does Nothing
Grab: Does Nothing
Info: Informs
Steal: Does Nothing

Non-Humanoid Enemies:
Talk: Informs
Grab: Informs
Info: Informs
Steal: Does Nothing

Humanoid Enemies
Talk: Informs
Grab: Informs
Info: Informs
Steal: Steals
Last edited by BansheeXYZ on Tue Dec 10, 2019 3:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jeoshua
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by Jeoshua » Tue Dec 10, 2019 3:35 pm

Actually the idea of doing something with the info is quite easy. There is no penalty for using it, no game state alterations possible just information. That means that an option to run Info across the screen when hovering over any object is possible and when entering a space to just run the Info anyways. I would like this option even without changes to the 'E' key, as discussed above. Just have a toggle for "Auto Info" and check every tick if the character is looking at something, store that reference, and if the next time you check they're still looking at it run Info.

Also a great fix to a common problem we all have ("Now where was my quest sending me? I'll ask this dude *click*" HALTHALT HALT HALT! "Fffffff---" ) would be to change stealing mode to require holding Sneak to use (remember sneak and crouch are different). This makes logical sense, since you don't want to be seen stealing, and since Sneak is not a toggle can't be accidental, ever. Otherwise just apply grab logic.

And to round out the modes, is dialogue ever really useful? It does nothing special other than declaring your intent to talk, and grabs in all other situations, but also grab mode works as dialogue in every possible instance! Other than stealing from vs talking to villagers, dealt with above, you don't need this mode at all.
Last edited by Jeoshua on Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:03 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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DigitalMonk
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by DigitalMonk » Tue Dec 10, 2019 3:53 pm

BansheeXYZ wrote:
Tue Dec 10, 2019 3:30 pm
Also, here's some documentation on what each mode does:
Thank you for putting that information together. This really does seem to show that the mode buttons are mostly useless:

Mobile NPC: All modes Talk, except for Steal -- we already have a "Sneak" key separate from "Crouch". Currently it only affects movement speed and thus indirectly benefits Sneak checks. But why not "sneak+click on Mobile NPC = Steal"?

Static NPC: All modes Talk (even Steal!) except for Info. Personally, I'd be perfectly happy for some kind of pop up at a particular place on the screen, or maybe over the NPCs head, whenever the cursor is pointing at them -- don't make it an interaction at all, just something that always happens. If that's too distracting, only do it if you pause while looking at someone -- that way you don't get names flickering by as you run through a tavern, but if you ever stop in curiosity, bang, you know who it is.

Door: All modes Grab (open). Done...

Building Wall: Only Info mode does anything, and it informs. Why not inform in all modes (equivalent to not having a mode) if the user clicks on a building wall?

Non-Human Enemy: Inform in all modes except Steal, which does nothing. Why not always inform? If you're trying to steal from a bear, it's perfectly valid to point out "dufus, that's a bear..."

Humanoid Enemy: Inform in all modes except Steal. This could be treated like Mobile NPC, except informing instead of talking.

So, to wrap up:
  • We could remove all four interaction modes without impacting most interactions at all.
  • Only stealing remains as a optional interaction mode, and only for mobile NPCs and humanoid enemies. Use of the otherwise mostly pointless Sneak key to signal your larcenous intent seems both easy and convenient.
Just my thoughts...

BansheeXYZ
Posts: 555
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by BansheeXYZ » Tue Dec 10, 2019 4:41 pm

Jeoshua wrote:
Tue Dec 10, 2019 3:35 pm
Actually the idea of doing something with the info is quite easy. There is no penalty for using it, no game state alterations possible just information. That means that an option to run Info across the screen when hovering over any object is possible and when entering a space to just run the Info anyways. I would like this option even without changes to the 'E' key, as discussed above. Just have a toggle for "Auto Info" and check every tick if the character is looking at something, store that reference, and if the next time you check they're still looking at it run Info.
Of course it's possible, to not have info add to the list of hotkeys needing memorized and pressed. Morrowind and every FPRPG thereafter does it that way. That's not the issue.

I will say that if it does somehow get in, you can't have it autopopping every time a building comes within 50ft of your LOS. The distance at which it activates would have to be very short and require your character to be standing still as well. You could also just disable it for buildings.

Jeoshua
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by Jeoshua » Tue Dec 10, 2019 5:07 pm

That's why it would be optional. The only reason you would want it off is if your immersion is broken by knowing things through pop up. Most people wouldn't be that bothered, but those that are would be really bothered. I like the the distance idea, but a 2 second hover should be long enough to prevent message spam.

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mikeprichard
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by mikeprichard » Tue Dec 10, 2019 5:41 pm

Great ideas and info from Lokkrin, Banshee, Jeoshua, and DigitalMonk here! To synthesize what I think would be an intuitive (and hopefully relatively simple to implement) optional control scheme in base DFU down the road:

1) Make the "ACTIVATE CENTER OBJECT" control handle all current "Talk Mode" and "Grab Mode" functions.
(Nothing would be lost/changed in terms of functionality by doing this compared to classic.)
2) Make the "ACTIVATE CENTER OBJECT" control handle all current "Steal Mode" functions when "SNEAK" is active.
(Note that Interkarma will be adding optional walk/run and walk/sneak toggles later in DFU alpha; I mistakenly referenced in the other topic using the "CROUCH" control for this purpose, whereas as I'd originally noted in the first post of the current topic, I meant "SNEAK".)
3) Convert the "Info Mode" function, only relevant for static NPCs, enemies, and buildings, into an optionally automatically displayed on-screen message when near the target and/or after a couple seconds of facing the distant target with the crosshair over the same.

On a general note, Interkarma had mentioned (viewtopic.php?f=4&p=26773#p26767) he'd polled the community early in DFU development as to whether something like this as an alternative to the default Interaction Modes would be of interest. Although he himself wouldn't be opposed to it, at the time, most community members asked weren't interested. However, I hope it's not taken amiss if I say that at that time, the community was a bit of an echo chamber for original Daggerfall players (of whom I'm one!) who just took the Modes for granted because it was what they were used to from playing classic in the '90s. I strongly suspect that if a poll is eventually posted to Twitter or elsewhere clearly comparing the current system to an optional alternative like the above and asking people to vote as to whether such an option would be worthwhile, the results would be very different. Of course I'm not the one to do the work, so I can't speak to the technical feasibility of some of this, but that aside, just because something is "tolerable" doesn't mean it can't be improved, as proven by many, many optional QoL features that have been and continue to be added to DFU over the years. Anyway, I'll be keeping an eye on this, and hope it will be revisited later in alpha!

BansheeXYZ
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by BansheeXYZ » Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:08 pm

mikeprichard wrote:
Tue Dec 10, 2019 5:41 pm
2) Make the "ACTIVATE CENTER OBJECT" control handle all current "Steal Mode" functions when "SNEAK" is active.
It's a pretty good idea to roll pickpocketing into sneaking, but the pickpocket icon does need to appear by the cursor when sneaking. That's the only icon that needs to remain.

Since most players don't use sneak, you'd probably also want to replace the tutorial prompt with a hotkey overview scroll that also shows how to quicksave/quickload, unstack things, etc.

Jeoshua
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by Jeoshua » Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:08 pm

Knowing a bit of code, these suggestions are very doable, the only one having a performance penalty being checking LOS and Distance, and even then it's extremely minor (comparable to, but a bit less than, the performance penalty for climbing, which I'm sure you never noticed)

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mikeprichard
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by mikeprichard » Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:17 pm

BansheeXYZ wrote:
Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:08 pm
It's a pretty good idea to roll pickpocketing into sneaking, but the pickpocket icon does need to appear by the cursor when sneaking. That's the only icon that needs to remain.
Yes, that was my assumption as well - some indicator you're in sneak stance in addition to simply moving more slowly would be very useful. And Jeoshua, I am hoping that's the case! The game already checks e.g. buildings at distance when using the Info mode from classic, so I wouldn't think there would be any noticeable performance impact here.

l3lessed
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Re: UI/controls - enhancements

Post by l3lessed » Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:18 pm

Inventory sheet UI enhancements
1) Show full item data (including all item enchantments) in mouseover tooltips**
Has anyone got to this? I already have done this by manually modifying the inventory class script. To make this a mod independent file, the inventory class script will need to be reworked so a number of properties and classes in it are made public and accessible by mod users, specifically the info panel class.

The only way to do it now, without making the inventory script properties publicly accessible to outside scripts/code, is the change the inventory base class script, which then requires a whole indie branch of the game.

I'll try to get some of the submissions into the repo, so inventory UI can be manipulated more easily by modders in the future.
Last edited by l3lessed on Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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