Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

For all discussion on all the previous Bard's Tale games: the classic 1980s games (Bard's Tale, II: Destiny Knight, & III: Thief of Fate) & the humorous Bard's Tale (2004) spin off.

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Gizmo
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » April 24th, 2017, 10:50 am

thebruce wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 6:30 am
Ah yes, 4 letter spell codes - please no forced scrolling!
I think that it would be more than enough to just fully support four character spell codes; that being very cool in itself... But that the game does need a spellcasting UI.

[Needless to say, having only the spell codes would be a pain on the console platforms.]

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by thebruce » April 24th, 2017, 11:06 am

Perhaps a variant. Using DPads you could have 'combos'; remember a sequence of directions to cast a spell quickly. C-up-up-down-left-right-left. Could be faster than codes, even. Would be hard to have 26 directions :P, but it could just be a console variant.

Though text shortcodes that hint at the spell or are its short form is a very easy way to remember the spell, as opposed to directions.
Maybe on console the directions could be letters, or perhaps ingredients/steps in a successful casting, maybe like composing hand motions. Up/Down/Clockwise/Down/Down (2x downs does a followup downward flick, eg).

On second thought, it wouldn't be that far-fetched to have a 26-letter alphabet circle one could punch in the code via joystick quickly on console. *shrug* ideas.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » April 24th, 2017, 12:04 pm

Image ;)

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Drool » April 24th, 2017, 10:45 pm

thebruce wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 11:06 am
C-up-up-down-left-right-left. Could be faster than codes, even.
Ugh. No thank you. I'd rather scroll through a list to assign four hotkey spells (to d pad, likely) and use a list for non-hotkeyed spells than turn it into some kind of fighting game half-circle-punch-punch-kick-block-doubletap-up nonsense.

Besides, having some kind of weird multi-key combo in a turn-based game would be weird at best and gimmicky at worst.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Zombra » April 25th, 2017, 1:11 am

Drool wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 10:45 pm
thebruce wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 11:06 am
C-up-up-down-left-right-left. Could be faster than codes, even.
Ugh. No thank you. I'd rather scroll through a list to assign four hotkey spells (to d pad, likely) and use a list for non-hotkeyed spells than turn it into some kind of fighting game half-circle-punch-punch-kick-block-doubletap-up nonsense.

Besides, having some kind of weird multi-key combo in a turn-based game would be weird at best and gimmicky at worst.
To me that actually sounds exactly like inventory and skill access in Wasteland and Bard's Tale. U-S-3-PgDn-PgDn-6-LeftArrow, sound familiar?
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Ether » April 25th, 2017, 1:51 am

As a console player, yeah, punching in codes would be a nightmare.

Scrolling wouldn't be too bad if the spell book is the size of bt 1. Obviously the larger books in the sequels it's more problematic.

I think this was mentioned in another thread some time ago, but to first select the class, then the spell would probably help.

That all said, if I was playing this on a Pc keyboard I would want to type in the codes.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by phimseto » April 25th, 2017, 7:28 am

Stay on topic, folks! :-) That said, this is a good discussion, re: interface. I encourage one of you to start a thread in the BT4 forum!

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by thebruce » April 25th, 2017, 7:47 am

Drool wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 10:45 pm
thebruce wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 11:06 am
C-up-up-down-left-right-left. Could be faster than codes, even.
Ugh. No thank you. I'd rather scroll through a list to assign four hotkey spells (to d pad, likely) and use a list for non-hotkeyed spells than turn it into some kind of fighting game half-circle-punch-punch-kick-block-doubletap-up nonsense.

Besides, having some kind of weird multi-key combo in a turn-based game would be weird at best and gimmicky at worst.
Oh I'm certainly against removing the ability for keyboard entry of spell codes (that 'signature' was what spawned this thought process, coupled with gizmo's reference to console interface). I'm just finding an analog between entering P-H-D-O and some equivalent that's more console-friendly. Whether it's directions or letters the effect is the same, it would just be the implemention that makes the difference :)

On desktop, definitely do not require hand-wavy motion in order to cast a spell. But if inXile stuff the game with animation esthetics, entering four letters would be just like selecting four 'triggers', in a sense, only there are (at this point) 26 different triggers, and those could play out (animate) like 'invoking' the spell. (though I'd likely turn off that animation too :lol:)

Anyway, point being - quick selection of spells! No long scrolling. I hated the pagedown-pagedown-pagedown-pagedown-downarrow-downarrow-downarrow to find and select a spell to cast.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by phimseto » April 25th, 2017, 9:38 am

thebruce wrote:
April 25th, 2017, 7:47 am

Anyway, point being - quick selection of spells! No long scrolling. I hated the pagedown-pagedown-pagedown-pagedown-downarrow-downarrow-downarrow to find and select a spell to cast.
I can pass that along. :-)

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Drool » April 25th, 2017, 9:20 pm

phimseto wrote:
April 25th, 2017, 7:28 am
Stay on topic, folks! :-) That said, this is a good discussion, re: interface. I encourage one of you to start a thread in the BT4 forum!
Just wanna hit this one point:
Zombra wrote:
April 25th, 2017, 1:11 am
To me that actually sounds exactly like inventory and skill access in Wasteland and Bard's Tale. U-S-3-PgDn-PgDn-6-LeftArrow, sound familiar?
I would say that's far more intuitive (Use, Skill, Character 3, Scroll down to item, Item Number, Direction) than a HADOKEN! key combination to cast Levitate. Moreover, once you learned one combination, all others flow from it, unlike semi-random button combinations.
thebruce wrote:
April 25th, 2017, 7:47 am
Anyway, point being - quick selection of spells! No long scrolling. I hated the pagedown-pagedown-pagedown-pagedown-downarrow-downarrow-downarrow to find and select a spell to cast.
On that we can agree.

That said, if the choice is List or Throw Out Half The Spells, I'll take the list.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by phimseto » April 26th, 2017, 2:15 pm

Thanks, everyone. I used the posts here and assorted comments on various forums to submit a list to the dev team today.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Zadkiel » April 26th, 2017, 2:33 pm

thebruce wrote:
April 24th, 2017, 6:27 am
Drool wrote:
April 22nd, 2017, 8:36 pm
Zadkiel wrote:
April 22nd, 2017, 10:58 am
There's even plenty of precedent. Such as the Silver Square, Circle & Triangle from BT1 being a nod to the EA logo.
Never noticed that. Nice!
Ditto, that never clicked until just now! :D
It was obvious to me! I mean, it was right there on the front of the box!

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by the_dudes » May 18th, 2017, 6:42 am

The monks' chanting!
"Dona eis requiem"
It took us AGES to figure out what they sing!
dona eis requiem

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Crosmando » May 21st, 2017, 10:24 pm

- Paying the barkeep (or the Sage in Sage's Hut) for information or rumours (even if most of the information they gave was bogus). It would be cool if that was kept for BT4, but the information was actually legit and led to hidden secrets or quests.

- Shops etc only opening during daylight hours, even if you were desperate.

- Nighttime being deadly and having random encounters galore.
Last edited by Crosmando on May 22nd, 2017, 7:53 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » May 22nd, 2017, 7:19 am

Crosmando wrote:
May 21st, 2017, 10:24 pm
- Shops etc only opening during daylight hours, even if you were desperate.

- Nighttime being deadly and having random encounters galore.
I used to live in the French Quarter; there are similarities between it an the towns in Bard's Tale... It's a rectangular grid of old-world streets. It has bars, Inns, little shops of all kinds, churches, and a main square; all inter-spaced with housing. The bars never really close, and you get weird random encounters all the time; day or night.

I used to frequent a bookstore in the Quarter that that didn't close until 2 AM. There are even a few tunnels and underground areas, and nearby cemeteries.

Because it's a port, there are restaurants open 24 hours; or very nearly so. This town never shuts down; it'd be a shame if the ones in BT did.
Last edited by Gizmo on May 22nd, 2017, 7:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by phimseto » May 22nd, 2017, 7:30 am

Gizmo wrote:
May 22nd, 2017, 7:19 am
Crosmando wrote:
May 21st, 2017, 10:24 pm
- Shops etc only opening during daylight hours, even if you were desperate.

- Nighttime being deadly and having random encounters galore.
I used to live in the French Quarter; there are similarities between it an the towns in Bard's Tale... It's a rectangular grid of old-world streets. It has bars, Inns, little shops of all kinds, churches, and a main square; all inter-spaced with housing. The bars never really close, and you get weird random encounters all the time; day or night. I used to frequent a bookstore in the Quarter that that didn't close until 2 AM. There are even a few tunnels and underground areas, and nearby cemeteries.

Because it's a port, there are restaurants open 24 hours; or very nearly so. This town never shuts down; it'd be a shame if the ones in BT did.
Hahaha! This is brilliant. I'm sharing this with the NOLA office. :-D

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Crosmando » May 22nd, 2017, 1:36 pm

A couple of others:
- Undead enemies that could turn characters old and drain experience points (level-draining enemies is something so sadistic that no modern developer would dare to inflict on their audience 8-) ).
- Doppleganger monsters that would join your party if you have empty slots by disguising themselves as one of your characters (not deadly but confusing and weird as hell).
Last edited by Crosmando on May 22nd, 2017, 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Gizmo » May 22nd, 2017, 1:38 pm

Crosmando wrote:
May 22nd, 2017, 1:36 pm
A couple of others:
- Undead enemies that could turn characters old and drain experience points (this is a thing in D&D also but it's still cool, level-draining enemies is something that no developer would dare to inflict on their audience 8-) ).
- Doppleganger monsters that would join your party if you have empty slots by disguising themselves as one of your characters.
Didn't they do both of those in BT? (I'm sure they did that)

*They did have level drain in BG2; (or was it just XP damage down to the current level?).
Last edited by Gizmo on May 22nd, 2017, 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Crosmando » May 22nd, 2017, 1:39 pm

Hmmm, maybe they did. It's been ages since I played BG yet I only recently re-played BT.
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Re: Bard's Tale trilogy signature elements

Post by Drool » May 22nd, 2017, 10:09 pm

The old Gold Box games had level draining, and they'd take levels; repeatedly. This was especially bad in Pool of Radiance because there was no Restoration spell, even at the temple. It could also cause really weird bugs when a level 1 got drained, as they'd (at least on the C64 version) wrap around to above max level; probably to 255.

I don't think Bard's Tale had level draining, but it did have withering which gave you the OLD status effect which utterly tanked your attributes. In 1 (and 2?) you could only reverse it at a temple. In 3, you had the temple, a Potion of Youth consumable potion, and a high level Chronomancer (naturally) spell amusingly coded to OLAY that would reverse it.
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