Introductory Podcast - November 1st

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Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Kinak » Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:05 pm

There was some discussion in that other thread about the possibility of doing podcasts so I can answer questions from everyone and everyone can listen (or read a lovingly provided transcript) at their leisure.

So, it seems like it would kind of cool to do a podcast on the 1st, where I can answer questions and sort of outline where I want to add neat stuff. Maybe it's just me, but I feel like audio is a better medium for introduction and explanation than pure text.

If you agree and would like to hear me ramble about something, ask away. If there are enough questions by the 1st, I'll do a podcast answering them. If not, I'll just go through the thread and answer things here.

As a side note, it's easier to work a thread like this if you keep it to just questions. So, even if the answer is really obvious, it's easier for me if you resist the urge to answer it. Otherwise I end up having to skim and end up missing questions, which is sad.

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Re: Podcast on November 1st?

Postby TheK3vin » Sun Oct 30, 2011 11:54 am

Hi Kinak, welcome to the family! Really great to have you.

I have a couple random questions that I've come up with while re-familiarizing myself with the game specifically for the purpose of coming up with some questions.

1. I would like more gloves. I don't feel there are enough interesting gloves in the game. Uh... question mark.

2. How impossible would it be to create a World of Wacraft-esque system for linking to item descriptions in chat? In WoW you can simply control-click (I think?) on any item and a link to it pops up in chat. Might be a nightmare to do, but it would be VERY useful and a cool thing to see in a game like this.

3. Another kind of big one, I'd really like a better interface for pulls during runs. Perhaps a separate inventory page, where all the items just have [Pull] links. As of right now it's VERY hard to remember which things do what without selecting them and hitting the button. Some organization into categories and the item images would be very helpful to people who are playing casually and aren't reading off a list of optimal pulls.

That's all I've got for now.

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Re: Podcast on November 1st?

Postby mara » Mon Oct 31, 2011 4:38 am

TheK3vin wrote:3. Another kind of big one, I'd really like a better interface for pulls during runs. Perhaps a separate inventory page, where all the items just have [Pull] links. As of right now it's VERY hard to remember which things do what without selecting them and hitting the button. Some organization into categories and the item images would be very helpful to people who are playing casually and aren't reading off a list of optimal pulls.


If you do this, please retain the old interface as well. I stopped doing softcore in kol partially because of how much I hated this system and how nervous it made me every time I used it.

Edited to include questions:

1. Where do you intend to invest most of your effort in the game? By this, I mean do you want to expand or change quests? Add quests or new content matrices? Just curious what interests you as a game developer.

2. You've made it clear that you'd rather make a good game/a game you're satisfied with over worrying about player retention. As a player, I'm worried about player retention. I like to "speed" retcon, but the fun in that is starting to wane with almost zero competition. Is there anything you plan to do to attract new players? How about player retention? I think clans and community tend to keep people attracted as much as, if not more than, the actual game content for non-graphics-based games like this. Thoughts?

3. Can we get a /spading chat channel please. Some of the best spaders in the game don't have access to /retcon, which is where new content tends to be discussed.

4. Are you still going to celebrate ryme's b-day? :P

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Re: Podcast on November 1st?

Postby Kinak » Tue Nov 01, 2011 9:55 pm

Listen in awe to me trying to be brief.

Spoiler: show
I'm terrible at being brief :)


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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Cristiona » Tue Nov 01, 2011 10:17 pm

404'd!
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Valmo » Tue Nov 01, 2011 10:18 pm

If you go directly to http://www.twilightheroes.com/podcast/ you can grab the podcast from there.

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Cristiona » Tue Nov 01, 2011 11:50 pm

So it does, thanks.

Re: the change to Deep Storage, I like the favorites idea over having the images and such load. It could even be another pull-down between the two existing ones.

Then again, I usually go all-items or no-items, so I'm not the best person to ask.

Edit: KoL's "new" Hagnk's interface is pretty terrible as it's now, essentially, a mirror of your inventory screen with consumables, equipment, and other all on their own page. I vastly preferred the older interface.
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Kinak » Wed Nov 02, 2011 5:16 am

Cristiona wrote:404'd!
Fix'd!

Too much coding leads to thinking every file is .php :oops:

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Harry Dresden » Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:09 pm

I had some issues with Media Player today, but I'll get the transcript typed up tomorrow for whoever needs it.

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby seventhcross » Wed Nov 02, 2011 6:30 pm

Didn't think about this in time for the podcast, but did while listening. So, to post for either an answer now or for a future podcast...

The mall is great for selling things, but there are a lot of items (particularly IotM) that most people would only like to trade for stars. Would it be possible to add a section to the mall where things could be sold for stars instead of chips? I wouldn't mind even if it required a purchase like the original store did.
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Ryme » Wed Nov 02, 2011 7:01 pm

Wait, wait, Kinak rhymes with win-ack and not my-nack? That's it, deal's off. I can't live with these conditions!

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Harry Dresden » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:12 pm

Transcript, finally. This is a lot of paraphrasing, so if you guys would prefer word-for-word transcripts in the future let me know and I'll change it up.

*********

Welcome and introduction of Kinak. He admits he’s a long-winded man, from Columbus, OH. Game design is a hobby, and he loves developing the game from a GM kind of standpoint and building on the story.

Question: I would like more gloves. I don’t feel like there are enough gloves in the game?

Kinak: There’s a lot of space we can expand in almost every equipment slot, though some more than others. There’s a lot of interesting design where by handling a specific slot in a specific way, you can give a kind of flavor. I want to spend some time looking through each slot, understanding where things are at now from a design standpoint.

Question: How impossible would it be to create a World of Warcraft-esque system for linking to item descriptions in chat via control-click?

Kinak: I don’t know how hard it would be, but I’m guessing very. There’s some weirdness there with Javascript registering the click and transferring it over to chat. It seems like the kind of thing that would take 10 times longer than you thought it would. I’d like to make it easier to trade in places like the mall, rather than through chat.

Harry note: This would lead to a lot of banning during the 48 hour period for new content. I know you can’t resist showing off your stuff, and would want to be the first one to do a link.

Question: I’d really like a better interface for pulls during runs, perhaps a separate inventory page where all items just have [Pull] links. As of right now it's VERY hard to remember which things do what without selecting them and hitting the button. Some organization into categories and the item images would be very helpful to people who are playing casually and aren't reading off a list of optimal pulls.

Kinak: If the community doing runs with Pulls decide that’s what they want, I would consider it. Inventory pages are brutal to the server, with all the database interaction and image loading. It seems to me that the large amount of stuff in Deep Storage or inventory is as big a problem. Having a list of favorites or pre-saved outfits could be another solution, or a kind of filtering system.

Question: If you do this, please retain the old interface as well. I stopped doing softcore in kol partially because of how much I hated this system and how nervous it made me every time I used it.

Kinak: I mostly did hardcore, so I’m not sure how it worked there. I’d definitely want to discuss what Pull run players are wanting out of a system before changing it.

Question: Where do you intend to invest most of your effort in the game? By this, I mean do you want to expand or change quests? Add quests or new content matrices? Just curious what interests you as a game developer.

Kinak: I could talk about this for entirely too long. (Really! He could!) Ryme handed over his list of things he planned to do, and wanted to do. Most of the stuff I’ll be doing going forward is adding new content, more than revising old content. Like the Go Fish quest, which Ryme was intending to revamp. I need to go through that and see if we still need to do that. I don’t want to call it boring, but it’s a very linear quest with not much going on. I’d also like to tweak the Bind Mender quest a little bit, as far as how the mechanics in the area work. The main focus is quests and new content. There are a bunch of B quests that will get fleshed out and implemented. The Brute quest is not the end of that storyline, there’s more going on there that will be added in the future. I’m working on a lot of tools, to help me work more in parallel with Cristiona. That will help speed up the game development. I could work on something like Leagues while Cris works up items and text for a quest. Then I could pop over to do the coding bits on the quest, and jump back to Leagues when that is done. You can have small content released every few weeks, and then big content released every 2 or 3 months. I think that’s more exciting than just having big content released every few months with less of the small stuff in between. I am planning to work on Leagues, which is why I used that example. I expect it to take a long time, though.

Question: You've made it clear that you'd rather make a good game/a game you're satisfied with over worrying about player retention. As a player, I'm worried about player retention. I like to "speed" retcon, but the fun in that is starting to wane with almost zero competition. Is there anything you plan to do to attract new players? How about player retention? I think clans and community tend to keep people attracted as much as, if not more than, the actual game content for non-graphics-based games like this. Thoughts?

Kinak: Player retention is definitely important. Not because more players means more potential donations, but because it makes the game as a whole better. Especially when competing for space on retcon boards or in PvP. The PvP system does need some work in the future to make it more interesting.

When talking about player retention, leagues are important but what really brings people together are the shared experiences. (Everquest-related stuff here that I don’t understand. Listen to the podcast!) The reason leagues will take so long to code is because I want to bring in the superhero “flavor”, not just chat channels and small things like that.

The more players you have and the longer you can keep them, the more good things they have to say to bring in new players. Advertising is also important for bringing in new players. I’d love to use the profits from donation, everything over what’s needed to keep the servers running, to advertise and bring in new people to grow the community.

As far as community over content, you’ll notice in most MMO games that activity spikes when new content is released and that conversely activity tapers off in long stretches between new content release. New content helps the community grow.

Question: Can we get a /spading chat channel please. Some of the best spaders in the game don't have access to /retcon, which is where new content tends to be discussed.

Kinak: Leaving that one up to the mod team. I don’t think it’s difficult to add a chat channel, but it adds more to their workload than mine.

Question: Are you still going to celebrate ryme's b-day?

Kinak: I don’t really have any ties to my birthday, so a tentative yes. If only because it would be nice to give him a nod.

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby acidcat » Thu Nov 03, 2011 2:52 pm

Thanks very much for transcribing Harry, I very much prefer reading this type of thing over listening to a podcast. Hope it didn't take you too long.

Thanks for the podcast Kinak. Very interested to see any new content or tweaks, especially if you are going to move away from the linear quests. I've just started playing metroplexity and I like how there's more than one way to complete a quest (or even fail at doing the quest depending on your choices).

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Kinak » Thu Nov 03, 2011 3:02 pm

seventhcross wrote:Didn't think about this in time for the podcast, but did while listening. So, to post for either an answer now or for a future podcast...
Podcasts will probably be pretty irregular, so I'll just answer it now. If you want me to ramble on the topic, feel free to also ask then :)

seventhcross wrote:The mall is great for selling things, but there are a lot of items (particularly IotM) that most people would only like to trade for stars. Would it be possible to add a section to the mall where things could be sold for stars instead of chips? I wouldn't mind even if it required a purchase like the original store did.
I can definitely see why people would want to do that and I'm not going to say "no" out of hand, but I have a pretty serious reservation.

Right now the solution is to sell your stars, get a ton of chips and use those chips to buy the IotM. And then, if the person with the IotM wants stars, they buy them. As such, I'd think a star mall would cut down a lot on the star/chip exchange in both directions, which isn't something I'd want to do lightly.

What I think might help is that I plan to add buy orders to the Mall. With the ability to turn stars into chips instantly (rather than just the reverse), I think we might see this clear up. So, my thought for now is "put in buy orders, let that side of the market mature, and see if it's still a problem."

Ryme wrote:Wait, wait, Kinak rhymes with win-ack and not my-nack? That's it, deal's off. I can't live with these conditions!
You say tomato, I say tomatoe. You say Kinock, I say Kinack, let's call the whole thing off.

Harry Dresden wrote:Transcript, finally. This is a lot of paraphrasing, so if you guys would prefer word-for-word transcripts in the future let me know and I'll change it up.
Thanks for the transcript! I admire your boundless bravery, diving heedless into that vast pit of words.

acidcat wrote:Thanks for the podcast Kinak. Very interested to see any new content or tweaks, especially if you are going to move away from the linear quests. I've just started playing metroplexity and I like how there's more than one way to complete a quest (or even fail at doing the quest depending on your choices).
You're welcome!

I don't plan to move too much from the structure established, but even small stuff like rewards from B-quests that might help in the main quest line or adding high-difficulty shortcuts in early quests can really add a lot of strategy and replayability without getting to the level of complexity that Metroplexity's quests have.

Cheers!
Kinak

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby seventhcross » Thu Nov 03, 2011 4:15 pm

Kinak wrote:
seventhcross wrote:The mall is great for selling things, but there are a lot of items (particularly IotM) that most people would only like to trade for stars. Would it be possible to add a section to the mall where things could be sold for stars instead of chips? I wouldn't mind even if it required a purchase like the original store did.
I can definitely see why people would want to do that and I'm not going to say "no" out of hand, but I have a pretty serious reservation.

Right now the solution is to sell your stars, get a ton of chips and use those chips to buy the IotM. And then, if the person with the IotM wants stars, they buy them. As such, I'd think a star mall would cut down a lot on the star/chip exchange in both directions, which isn't something I'd want to do lightly.

What I think might help is that I plan to add buy orders to the Mall. With the ability to turn stars into chips instantly (rather than just the reverse), I think we might see this clear up. So, my thought for now is "put in buy orders, let that side of the market mature, and see if it's still a problem."

Cheers!
Kinak


Well, that's not a bad idea, but it doesn't really solve my issue. The reason I ask, is because I'm a person who can't donate and sometimes the best way for me to get stars is to sell my old IotM for stars. It's a lot easier to do straight trades than to do chip exchanges through the mall most times. Currently, I'm not convinced that a star mall would cut into trades in the normal mall all that much, as most of the stars being sold are by people who donate and already have all the old IotMs. Perhaps I'm not seeing the whole picture, and I can understand your PoV as well.

Also, I'm looking forward to when you decide to give PVP the overhaul it seems to be in need of. I'd love to assist with ideas for items and game mechanics, though I have virtually no coding skills. I was wondering if you had a generalized list for what things you'd like to get done in order of priority or not. (I know you said you work free-form more or less and that PVP was on a back-burner. I'm interested in seeing the list as it gets checked off and PVP gets closer to the top.)
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Kinak » Thu Nov 03, 2011 7:31 pm

seventhcross wrote:Well, that's not a bad idea, but it doesn't really solve my issue. The reason I ask, is because I'm a person who can't donate and sometimes the best way for me to get stars is to sell my old IotM for stars. It's a lot easier to do straight trades than to do chip exchanges through the mall most times. Currently, I'm not convinced that a star mall would cut into trades in the normal mall all that much, as most of the stars being sold are by people who donate and already have all the old IotMs. Perhaps I'm not seeing the whole picture, and I can understand your PoV as well.
Thanks for clarifying. I was expecting a totally different set of reasons.

That said, I still feel like encouraging a separate economy that runs solely off silver stars runs a very real risk of cutting off non-donators (without a stash of old IotMs) from having any hope of IotMs. Given the choice, I'd much rather just have one Mall where everyone can go and stars are just part of a larger economy. If I've played out my hand and that's not going to happen, then I'll make both economies function as smoothly as possible and do my best to make sure they cross here and there.

seventhcross wrote:Also, I'm looking forward to when you decide to give PVP the overhaul it seems to be in need of. I'd love to assist with ideas for items and game mechanics, though I have virtually no coding skills. I was wondering if you had a generalized list for what things you'd like to get done in order of priority or not. (I know you said you work free-form more or less and that PVP was on a back-burner. I'm interested in seeing the list as it gets checked off and PVP gets closer to the top.)
I'm not sure how useful a list would actually be. It's structured in groups like "Stuff I need to think about" and "Little Stuff I'll do when I have a second," but periodically something that wasn't even important enough to make it on the list jumps straight to production over all the "Stuff In Development."

Like today I'm pretty much settled on item spindling, faintly thinking about leagues, and hashing out bind mender changes, but since I was thinking about buy orders from our conversation, I laid some of the groundwork for them. And I was familiarizing myself the chat code for possible changes there. But I might not actually come back to either of those for months. Or I might finish them both over the weekend :lol:

But what I could do, if it would help at all, is a "what big blocks of content are actively being worked on" list and a "what is on Kinak's radar" list, with the understanding you'll get the occasional SECRET PROJECT and stuff on my radar may fall off the radar rather than get done. I'm not sure if it would answer more questions or create more rage, but if there's a demand, I can maintain a list here on the forums.

Cheers!
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby seventhcross » Fri Nov 04, 2011 7:25 pm

Kinak wrote:Thanks for clarifying. I was expecting a totally different set of reasons.
^_^ It's good to know we have reached an understanding. I will continue to use the system that has been given to me and to check out the buying system when it is unleashed to see how well it works.

Kinak wrote:I'm not sure how useful a list would actually be. It's structured in groups like "Stuff I need to think about" and "Little Stuff I'll do when I have a second," but periodically something that wasn't even important enough to make it on the list jumps straight to production over all the "Stuff In Development."

But what I could do, if it would help at all, is a "what big blocks of content are actively being worked on" list and a "what is on Kinak's radar" list, with the understanding you'll get the occasional SECRET PROJECT and stuff on my radar may fall off the radar rather than get done. I'm not sure if it would answer more questions or create more rage, but if there's a demand, I can maintain a list here on the forums.

I can't speak for anyone else, but personally, as much fun as surprises can be I do enjoy seeing the upcoming improvements "list" so I know what to expect. I personally would love to see a "Current Projects" & a "Kinak's Radar" topic added to the forums. A lot of ideas you listed during the podcast sound great and I'm getting very comfortable with having you on board the team. (Although I was hoping Ryme would get the "free use of PVP each day" implemented before the switchover happened. One more thing on my list of things to look forward to! :wink: )
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Cristiona » Fri Nov 04, 2011 8:08 pm

Well, I could post what's on the radar (or at least some of it), but that won't necessarily make anyone feel any better. I mean, I started work on the level 12 quest two years ago. Being on the radar doesn't always mean it'll happen any time soon.
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Harry Dresden » Sat Nov 05, 2011 5:16 am

With a kind of "upcoming list", I see a lot of chat hassle with people complaining that x has been on the list for y months and nothing is happening. It's bad enough that we already get almost daily "x item still doesn't have a description/use?" from some people.

Maybe I'm just cynical. No, I am cynical.

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby seventhcross » Sat Nov 05, 2011 8:15 pm

I'd suggest putting disclaimers on them and making them so people are unable to post on them, but I doubt that would resolve the issues that Cris and Harry bring up. We've seen how well people tend to follow instructions on the IotM trades post.

Those are good reasons not to have them, at least for those of you who have no choice but to watch everything that's happening in the chat.

Well, looks like I'll just have to be patient and get surprised as the goodies get dropped. :|
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Cristiona » Sat Nov 05, 2011 8:18 pm

Well, I can give you a general idea of what's on my radar:

more B quests
fleshing out the gaps in the item list
probably some more quests/questy things
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Kinak » Sat Nov 05, 2011 8:29 pm

seventhcross wrote:I can't speak for anyone else, but personally, as much fun as surprises can be I do enjoy seeing the upcoming improvements "list" so I know what to expect. I personally would love to see a "Current Projects" & a "Kinak's Radar" topic added to the forums. A lot of ideas you listed during the podcast sound great and I'm getting very comfortable with having you on board the team.
Thanks!

Harry and Cristiona are probably right on the lists. I'll still do them if there's a general outcry, but it's not so much ruining surprises as giving out information I know will end up being mostly wrong.

Even now I'd consider a new B-Quest and Leagues to be the big current projects, but Leagues are going to take some serious time, so we might end up getting several quests rolled out before they're done. So a list with those two things on it may not be very helpful.

It would probably be best just to ask about what stuff I'm working on every podcast. You'll get more nuanced information that way, because what I forget to mention is probably as important as what I say about the stuff I do.

seventhcross wrote:(Although I was hoping Ryme would get the "free use of PVP each day" implemented before the switchover happened. One more thing on my list of things to look forward to! :wink: )
I'll look into that :)

Cristiona wrote:Well, I could post what's on the radar (or at least some of it), but that won't necessarily make anyone feel any better. I mean, I started work on the level 12 quest two years ago. Being on the radar doesn't always mean it'll happen any time soon.
So true, so true. I did design on pets for Metroplexity... oh, back in '08 or so, even got all the art lined up. I still haven't gotten around to the actual coding.

Harry Dresden wrote:With a kind of "upcoming list", I see a lot of chat hassle with people complaining that x has been on the list for y months and nothing is happening. It's bad enough that we already get almost daily "x item still doesn't have a description/use?" from some people.

Maybe I'm just cynical. No, I am cynical.
To be fair, I think you'll get that regardless, as you're seeing now. I'd hope having a list of things going on with explanations of why not to bug us (that it will sap any desire and inspiration I have to actually work on it, among other things) would help.

At the end of the day, though, you're probably right. Cynics usually are :) Even best case scenario, some of the stuff I'm thinking about now (horizon-wise) won't be done in a year and that just seems cruel.

Cheers!
Kinak

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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Olaf » Sun Nov 06, 2011 3:04 am

Harry Dresden wrote:Question: How impossible would it be to create a World of Warcraft-esque system for linking to item descriptions in chat via control-click?
Curious about this. Is it just Ctrl-clicking an item ingame causes you to say the item name in chat, which when clicked brings up the description window?
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Re: Introductory Podcast - November 1st

Postby Harry Dresden » Sun Nov 06, 2011 5:18 am

Exactly, Olaf. It makes the item name in chat a link to the item pop up box.


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