#xu4@irc.freenode.net logs for 4 Jun 2011 (GMT)

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[10:11:14] <NorwegianRockCat> Hey Darrenor64 and Dominus, just thought I would throw my 2 cents in about keywords.
[10:11:23] <NorwegianRockCat> I've thought about it a lot.
[10:12:40] <NorwegianRockCat> There certainly is a version of Ultima IV that uses it (the Sega Master System version)
[10:13:06] <NorwegianRockCat> However, there are certain things that are only triggerable (in theory) after a conversation.
[10:13:25] <NorwegianRockCat> For example, Person X says I should talk to Person Y about something.
[10:13:42] <NorwegianRockCat> In theory the player only would know about that topic after talking to Person X...
[10:14:01] <NorwegianRockCat> So, you need to introduce a whole new state into who the player has talked to...
[10:14:18] <NorwegianRockCat> otherwise you lose some of the fun of the game.
[10:14:55] <NorwegianRockCat> This is a real issue now as when going into the Guild store, we show sextantt...
[10:15:01] <NorwegianRockCat> even when you don't know about it...
[10:15:36] <NorwegianRockCat> I'm kind of OK with that since getting a sextant is a very small part of the game, whereas talking to people is a big part.
[10:16:25] <NorwegianRockCat> The next question is, if you go with keywords, where do you store the state about who you've talked to? This means you need to modify the savegame file format.
[10:16:45] <NorwegianRockCat> This could break compatibility with original save games and is probably not exactly what you want...
[10:17:30] <NorwegianRockCat> So, it seems that this design decision in the original game allowed them to store some state outside of the game (i.e., in the player's head or notes).
[10:18:17] <NorwegianRockCat> Which was very clever considering the constraints on memory and space that they had in 1985.
[10:18:31] <NorwegianRockCat> Anyway, I would suggest keeping the keyboard for talking for the moment.
[10:18:45] <NorwegianRockCat> There's a lot that can be done for the normal interface though.
[10:18:55] <NorwegianRockCat> It can easily morph and change based on where you are.
[10:19:23] <NorwegianRockCat> For example, in the wilderness, you don't need things like talk...
[10:19:42] <NorwegianRockCat> in Combat, many buttons can be disabled.
[10:20:05] <NorwegianRockCat> Adding some semi transparency to the panels should make it easy to make this work as well.
[10:21:23] <NorwegianRockCat> Anyway, I'm not against keywords per se, as it allows other cool features that weren't available in older versions (e.g., you can store a journal of all conversations, easier to not get confused etc.)
[10:22:07] <NorwegianRockCat> Also the keyboard obscuring the screen is probably less of an issue since the conversation is important, not what is happening on the game screen at that point.
[10:22:47] <NorwegianRockCat> OK. Enough for that. I'll start taking a look at this a bit more next week when all my other commitments are over (for the moment).
[10:22:53] <NorwegianRockCat> Have a nice day :-)
[10:25:45] <NorwegianRockCat> BTW, has anyone taken a look at https://sourceforge.net/tracker/?func=detail&aid=3256763&group_id=36225&atid=417353 There seems to be a patch for it.
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