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Crafting Table/Area Redesign?

Discussion in 'Release 2 Feedback' started by Silkie, Jan 25, 2014.

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  1. Silkie

    Silkie Avatar

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    It is odd/weird to have two crafting tables - the one you walk up to and at which your animated avatar works and a second one hovering somewhere in the air, on which you place crafting items. Is there a reason crafting can't be designed in the same manner as houses, i.e., where you could place your crafting items on the table in front of you - as you can place items on a table in a house - instead of on the floating table?

    Also, is there a reason why you can't leave a produced item sitting on the table while you produce another? For example, suppose you smelt ore and make an ingot. As a result the ingot and smelting hammer are sitting there. Then you add another iron ore and another chunk of coal, hit CRAFT and the table would have two ingots and the smithing hammer, etc. It's one thing to require the exact number of tools and raw materials required for making something; quite another to not allow anything else on the table. Indeed, why not allow all relevant tools to be placed on the table (normal work practice) and as long as the one that is required is there, you add the specified amount of raw materials and CRAFT again?
     
  2. Winfield

    Winfield Legend of the Hearth

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    Perhaps you can have more equipment on the table, but then whichever tool/equipment you need to use, you would EQUIP it in your hand, like real life. And have on the table the needed ingredients or items for the recipe. Well, picking up the tool is more immersive, but slower too.

    I like the idea of not having another crafting table pop-up if possible. Not sure it is possible though because you have to hit a "button" somewhere to CRAFT the item. Or maybe use your equipped tool to "whack" the table or anvil.

    In essence, it is all a trade off between realistic and ease of play. Hmm.
     
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  3. Winfield

    Winfield Legend of the Hearth

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    On another note, a friend told me they would rather not have a crafting table pop-up at all -- and no need to place items on a table. Just do it like UO -- have all the materials in your pack (more than the needed ingredients allowed too). Hit the tool of choice, also in your backpack, get a menu on screen to select through with sub-menus to pick an item. It sees there are enough ingredients, tell it to make 30 items if you have that many resources in your pack, then have them instantly made or walk away for 2 minutes while it grinds for you.

    Well, to me it is about the best balance of realism vs ease of use again. For SotA, it depends on how the storyline goes and the economy. Will we need to make 1000s of items to make a living, to sell to others, or we just need a few to get through the quests or equip our friends, and then there's no benefit to make 1000s more of the same item?
     
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  4. Lord Baldrith

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    I remember in UO carrying around my sewing kit and scissors and I could go out and hunt deer and be crafting leather stuffs and cutting it back up to build more...those were good times!
     
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  5. aevans

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    I suspect the current implementation is to look at all of the items on the crafting table and look up that exact combination in a list of recipes designated for that type of table. If found, light up the craft button. If the craft button is pressed while lit, look up that set of items again to get the output data. That output data determines what materials are consumed (don't show up in the output), what materials potentially take damage (the tools), what items are re-useable (tools, smelting molds, etc), and the final product (eventually to be adjusted with quality and quantity factors based on skill levels, etc).

    Since the table has only one 'surface area' anything in that area counts towards the recipe lookup. In order to ignore the produces items, it would need a separate 'output area' such that items there don't count towards the recipe lookup. That creates UI/UX issues given the current art assets for the tables. It can also lead to confusion if the two areas aren't properly designated as to what they do. e.g. if I place my Chunk of Coal in the output area (because it's all one big crafting table picture) the the craft button may not light up, even though, technically, the correct set of ingredients for a recipe is on 'the crafting table'.

    If someone can solve the UI/UX issues, then I could see having produced items staying on the table while you produce other stuff.
     
  6. Valice Belgraham

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    Thanks for bringing that up, I had almost completely forgotten about that from UO.

    I also don't want to be limited to creating bandages, arrows, certain foods, and various resources only at a crafting station. Some times I stay outside of towns for extended periods of time, and limit what I take out with me so I'm not over burdened during my journey.
     
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  7. Lord Baldrith

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    Yes! Making bandages/potions on the road is very important when traveling. Obviously, the tables would be for the more detailed items.
     
  8. Aeryk

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    I see significant potential in both of these ideas. The view as the character starts using a crafting station can be fixed or locked in. You character would then lay their tools out on the table (the tools should be larger than they are currently), lay out materials (again, larger than currently), and then initiate crafting by clicking on the appropriate tool. There should be some affordance to the user that the table is "theirs".

    I do very much like the current experience that has the player character walk to the crafting station. This provides immediate feedback to the user that there will be a mode shift in interaction. Very well done.

    Multiple issues make the existing interface difficult to use:
    1. Too small scale at high resolution (and potentially too large at low resolution).
    2. Art from the interface on most of the stations obscures tools and materials (even after adding the highlighting).
    3. What appears to be intended as a working surface area is too small relative to the art surrounding the area. Subsequently that portion of the surface turns out to have no effect on use of the station.

    I want to make a gentle prod here as this is an important part of my paying profession. Designers tend to overwork these skeuomorphic interfaces. It is particularly difficult to approach the design objectively. Such interfaces often obscure the task that needs to be accomplished rather than assist or provide affordance to what the user is expected to do or what will result. I sooo appreciate the "get the interface out of the way" goal this team has, so hopefully we can find more ways to eliminate the clutter.
     
  9. Dorham Isycle

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    The floating table is so multiple players can use the same workstation at the same time i think. I'm hearing rumors that in the future clicking a recipe in the recipe book will do the work while manually placing items on the table is for discovery if you choose to discover that way.
     
  10. Link_of_Hyrule

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    I've talked to DarkStarr about the items being too small and he said this is going to be fixed also after you discover an item you'll be able to use your recipe book to automatically place the items on the take so its a little less tedious and no as much drag and drop. They under stand the current viability issues and are working on changes to correct that. Also keep in mind what we've seen so far isn't even 10% of the actual system but just a small part of it.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk
     
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