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Movement in adventure games - what’s your preference and what’s a total no-no?

Poll: Movement and Interaction in adventure games - what’s your preference and what’s a total no-no?
Total Votes: 29
Point-And-Click Purist. Anything else spoils the genre.
3
Point-And-Click as well as Keyboard for shortcuts.
5
Point-And-Click or Keyboard/Mouse for everything.
2
Point-And-Click and won’t say "No" for Controller support.
6
Keyboard/Mouse and won’t say "No" for Controller support.
2
I play with Keyboard/Mouse almost exclusively.
1
I play with Controller almost exclusively.
1
Anything goes.
9

Total Posts: 18

Joined 2018-11-09

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Hey!

So, while working on my own game I slowly got my skills up to the level, that I can tinker with some additional stuff. And there’s one very interesting question I have for you guys:

Movement in adventure games - what’s your preference and what’s a total no-no?

Let’s think classics here in that regard, that this is a 2D Adventure game.

I am just pondering about this topic lately. Would love to hear your thoughts on this.

     
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Total Posts: 176

Joined 2017-12-19

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It doesn’t really matter if the game is good, and also you don’t have an option for parser in your choices.

It’s a little more difficult than just tinkering what you’re talking about though, point-and-click and direct control are completely different things. For point and click you need path finding algorithms, and for direct control you need a good plan to interact with the environment to prevent walking through objects and so on.

There’s a good reason why almost no adventure game has both control types available in the same game, even getting one to work flawlessly is a challenge. In an ideal situation it would be up to the player to choose of course.

     

Total Posts: 18

Joined 2018-11-09

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Oh, yes!

In case of just PnC the movement pathfinding are quite easy to implement, but as soon as you start to consider anything extra so many aspects rise in. One option to implement Controller support is to just have a cursor moved with it and your regular shortcuts mapped to controller’s buttons, but this does feel clunky.

Then you can have just WASD movement in 2D space - also easily doable within controller as well, but that seems, emm… “too old”? Smile

About once a week I google something releated - it’s like Wednesday’s Ritual Laughing Nothing much there on this topic. Someone at some point needs to have a stroke of genius to sort this out in a very easy way. Easy way to mix point-and-click with platformer type layout.

     
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Total Posts: 2245

Joined 2013-03-14

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I have no preference other than the controls have to fit the game, they are functional and the UI design supports the chosen control method.

     
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Total Posts: 7661

Joined 2012-01-02

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70-80 % pnc only, and the rest for really especial games, that i am sure of their quality, so i would mind however their controls are.

     

Total Posts: 838

Joined 2004-01-06

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I voted for “Point-And-Click as well as Keyboard for shortcuts” because it seemed the closest. Certainly using the Escape key to get to the Main Menu or using F5 to bring up a Save Menu is convenient.

I’m OK with either keyboard or point-and-click for movement.

But for interaction I want point-and-click. It’s a nuisance to have to toggle through a bunch of inventory with the keyboard until I highlight the right object instead of directly clicking on the object with the mouse. Automatic use of the object takes away user control, to the point you may not even be aware an inventory object was used. Aiming your character at an object and hitting the Enter key to interact with it is clumsy compared to just clicking on the object.

Can’t use a gamepad because of thumb injuries.

     
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Total Posts: 90

Joined 2006-12-29

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I used to be much on the point & click side but I’ve mellowed out about it over the years. First-person 3d keyboard-and-mouse is fine, direct gamepad control with proximity-based hotspots is fine if implemented well. It can get annoying when you have to mouse a mouse-like pointer without using a mouse and there are other potential hassles but designers seem to have gotten better at avoiding them.

     

The golden age of mathematics - that was not the age of Euclid, it is ours. -Cassius Jackson Keyser

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Total Posts: 2026

Joined 2007-01-04

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How about touch screen. This can work for a PC as well.

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I enjoy playing adventure games on handheld systems- PS VITA, Nintendo DS and ipad mini.

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Total Posts: 2245

Joined 2013-03-14

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Mikekelly - 31 October 2019 05:51 PM

How about touch screen. This can work for a PC as well.

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I see touch screens as point and click interfaces. To me there is very little difference in are you using a mouse, a stylus or your finger as the input device.

     
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Total Posts: 1056

Joined 2013-02-12

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tomimt - 01 November 2019 05:41 AM

I see touch screens as point and click interfaces. To me there is very little difference in are you using a mouse, a stylus or your finger as the input device.

Whereas to me there’s quite a big difference - having two mouse buttons allows for a significantly more expressive interface without having to introduce new visual elements or more complex actions that can distract from the actual game/story.

     
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Total Posts: 176

Joined 2017-12-19

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Phlebas - 01 November 2019 06:56 AM
tomimt - 01 November 2019 05:41 AM

I see touch screens as point and click interfaces. To me there is very little difference in are you using a mouse, a stylus or your finger as the input device.

Whereas to me there’s quite a big difference - having two mouse buttons allows for a significantly more expressive interface without having to introduce new visual elements or more complex actions that can distract from the actual game/story.

There are ways around that issue, like having some kind of two-finger tapping for alternate functions. The problem is of course that it only works for capacitive screens, resistive ones would need some alternative solution, so it’s easier to design with resistive mode in mind from the very beginning.

What is really a big issue though is that so many games these days are designed primarily as mobile games, and PC version is just made to run on a different OS, without any changes to the UI. Nothing is more annoying than playing a game on PC with a control scheme designed for mobile devices. Well, I suppose playing a parser game on a mobile phone might be more annoying, but that’s besides the point really…  Tongue

     

Total Posts: 53

Joined 2018-12-01

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Just started playing Jenny LeClue and feeling frustrated there’s no mouse support. I can’t think of any reason for this. My keyboard is wired and mouse is so much easier because I can use it from the sofa. Those were my thoughts anyway, petty as they may be, I was even thinking of dropping the game because of it.

     

Total Posts: 67

Joined 2013-03-10

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Point and click for me but understand that younger fans of genre are open to more controlled devices

     
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Total Posts: 166

Joined 2015-05-25

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Depends on what you’ll release the game on! I’m planning to release my next game on both PC and consoles so the game will have both mouse point & click style AND direct control supported.

It’s very hard to plan everything so it can be played with any type of control though (especially with one particular innovative aspect of my game…), for example I always try to avoid putting two hotspots in the same vertical space as it causes issues with direct control.

     

Single developer of Demetrios - The BIG Cynical Adventure. Available on PC, iOS, Android, PS4, Xbox One, PS Vita and Nintendo Switch !

Currently working on a new classic adventure mixing genres in “never been seen ways” - Project Brok. Watch me developing it on Twitch! https://www.twitch.tv/cowcatgames

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Total Posts: 122

Joined 2013-04-13

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I still feel adventure games were never the same after parser ended. I’m maybe the extreme minority but I would love to see someone create a mouse + wasd for movement and then a button to activate a parser interface so we could get back to typing instead of just clicking *action* or *talk* it was more immersive and fun

     
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Total Posts: 176

Joined 2017-12-19

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syn - 28 November 2019 04:55 PM

I still feel adventure games were never the same after parser ended. I’m maybe the extreme minority but I would love to see someone create a mouse + wasd for movement and then a button to activate a parser interface so we could get back to typing instead of just clicking *action* or *talk* it was more immersive and fun

There are plenty of parser games still being made. It has just been rebranded as “interactive fiction” for some reason. A couple of sites to check the latest ones out:

http://ifcomp.org
http://ifdb.tads.org

Of course what you are asking for is something very special, graphics and movement control from the present day and parser from the past. I don’t know if anyone has ever attempted to create that. Would be an interesting experiment though.

     

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