Journal Suggestions

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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Milamber33
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Journal Suggestions

Post by Milamber33 » November 6th, 2018, 3:53 am

I posted this over on the GoG forums, but not much is happening over there so I thought I'd better duplicate it here.

Loving the new version of these games, but the journal in its current state feels quite... unfinished. Let's face it, right now it's just a map with some notes. I have some ideas on how to improve it.

First of all, the Legend could use some tweaks:
- Add icons to the Legend for everything that actually appears on the map, i.e. the 'monsters lurk here' symbol.
- Show counts next to the Legend icons for how many of that have been identified on the map.
- When you mouse over a Legend entry, highlight everything of that type on the map. Useful for e.g. quickly reminding yourself where the stairs are in a cluttered map.

Second, I think the page with the Legend on it should have one or more buttons to replace the Legend with other screens of info:
- A list of Notes would be good, again mouse over the note and it should highlight its location on the map
- An actual journal, i,e, a record of events that have happened to the party (battles, special events, etc.) would be good. I'd like to be able to go back through the history of my playthrough and see where I was when I got a particular piece of gear. It would also serve as a useful debug dump if we can send you i.e. evidence that we've run into the same group of enemies 15 times in a row. I'd suggest just having a short headline visible at first but click or mouse over or something and it should show much more info, e.g. for battles the headline should just be the list of monsters you fought (or possibly even just the number of groups) and whether you fought or ran, but the detail would include any statuses that persisted after the fight (poison, death, old, etc.) and the rewards gained.

I think most of the above should be pretty simple to implement and are purely UI enhancements. The obvious exception is the last request, which would require creating a full historical tracking system, which would be a major change requiring a complete revamp of the save format, so I know it's a big ask. It would be nice to see though.

Thoughts, everyone? Anything else you can think of?

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thebruce
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by thebruce » November 6th, 2018, 5:54 am

I like the legend update, as long as it only shows icons for tiles that have been discovered. ie, start a new map, and you have no items in the legend (maybe wall :P) but as you discover different tiles the note would be added to the legend (including the count as you suggest). I think that would be a good QOL improvement for the automap.
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Milamber33
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by Milamber33 » November 6th, 2018, 2:31 pm

While that wouldn't be bad, I was more just talking about the fact that the map has icons that the legend doesn't currently explain. :P

rmichael
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by rmichael » November 9th, 2018, 11:10 am

I haven't started playing the remasters yet, but have looked closely at all the screenshots and I too noticed map marks which do not appear in the legend. Perhaps it's not a big deal if you've actually played and therefore can remember what happened at that map tile.

Generally, it would be great if the legend fully explained the map content.
jamespodesta wrote:
(Abusing quote because I can't find a way to mention... Sorry :) Any plans to "complete" the Legend for BT3 ?

Tuoweit
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by Tuoweit » November 10th, 2018, 12:22 pm

rmichael wrote:
November 9th, 2018, 11:10 am
I haven't started playing the remasters yet, but have looked closely at all the screenshots and I too noticed map marks which do not appear in the legend. Perhaps it's not a big deal if you've actually played and therefore can remember what happened at that map tile.

Generally, it would be great if the legend fully explained the map content.
All (I think) the symbols on the map will display tooltips if you hover the mouse over them, giving more information. Fixed, specific encounters will tell you exactly what was encountered; placed random encounters will just say "monsters lurk here" or something like that. All the notes, magic mouths, etc, all have their text displayed in the same way (so you don't need to write them down, just remember where they are in the dungeons).

Milamber33
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by Milamber33 » November 10th, 2018, 8:13 pm

All true, but since there's a map symbol for 'monsters lurk here', it SHOULD be included in the Legend. That's what a Legend is for, after all...

The extra detail about which monsters you encounter for fixed encounters, note text, teleport source/destination, etc. is fine as mouseover only, that's specific to the individual instances, but if there's an icon on the map, it should be in the Legend.

Tuoweit
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by Tuoweit » November 11th, 2018, 5:20 am

Milamber33 wrote:
November 10th, 2018, 8:13 pm
All true, but since there's a map symbol for 'monsters lurk here', it SHOULD be included in the Legend. That's what a Legend is for, after all...

The extra detail about which monsters you encounter for fixed encounters, note text, teleport source/destination, etc. is fine as mouseover only, that's specific to the individual instances, but if there's an icon on the map, it should be in the Legend.
Sure, I'm not disagreeing, just clarifying for the poster who hadn't played yet since the tooltips most likely aren't visible in most screenshots.

rmichael
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by rmichael » November 11th, 2018, 10:17 am

Tuoweit wrote:
November 11th, 2018, 5:20 am
Sure, I'm not disagreeing, just clarifying for the poster who hadn't played yet since the tooltips most likely aren't visible in most screenshots.
Thanks, appreciated. :-)

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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by rmcoen » November 14th, 2018, 12:32 pm

I like all these suggestions, too.

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jamespodesta
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Re: Journal Suggestions

Post by jamespodesta » November 28th, 2018, 12:36 am

The missing icons will be fixed in the BT3 drop.

I like some of the other ideas mentioned... not sure how many we'll get to but will chuck them on the wish list.
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