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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Skyrim - PC Interface Frustration @ GamaSutra

Default Skyrim - PC Interface Frustration @ GamaSutra

November 12th, 2011, 20:01
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
But it runs fine on my machine….? I love the menu system, to you it is broken, to me it is a step forward in UI's that have been the same forever…
You know this is rather a more philosophical tangent but I think there are reasonable ways of saying objectively whether an interface is good design or not besides audience taste. For instance the time it takes to get to an option. Or how quickly users become accustomed or proficient with the UI. Or how many clicks to get to an option. I think that the general concept of the new interface is a pretty cool one and I see where Bethsoft was going with it. But PC implementation was kind of kludgy and I can reasonably say that it created some slowdowns in those objective measures.
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November 12th, 2011, 20:02
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
I may be in the minority but I find it one of the better user interfaces I have used. Everything works the same way when crafting, selling etc. It is quick and effecient…no longer are you scrolling through your inventory looking for things, it's all right there split up into catagories such as books, food, apparel, weapons….I'm not sure how you can have trouble with that?

I am begining to suspect that with lack of things to pick on, some of the more "fervent" people are looking for things.
I agree with you. It's a little buggy but overall I like the interface a lot. I've actually found it very intuitive. It's just a matter of not using the mouse.
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November 12th, 2011, 20:05
bla bla - yeah the Skyrim interface is pretty poor. Hard to believe that a triple A game didn't see this coming

OTH, I've played with far worse inferfaces (Gothic, Disciples, Hard Rain) and those games turned out to be great. Right now Skyrim is very good - way to early to see if that will hold up and the game will become great, but a poor interface is usually not a game stopper in my experience.
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November 12th, 2011, 20:10
It's a horrible port, really, but I find I quite like the interface. It's very fast and functional once you get used to it.

The forced mouse acceleration and bad performance on high-end hardware without tweaking, however, is atrocious at best.

That said, I think the game is just fantastic so far. Pretty much everything Oblivion should have been.

Let's see if it holds up after the honeymoon period is over.
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November 12th, 2011, 20:15
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
That said, I think the game is just fantastic so far. Pretty much everything Oblivion should have been.
Oh, good. I was starting to wonder what some of the usual suspects thought of the game. You know, the ones that complained the loudest about Oblivion sometimes. I wonder what Maylander's thinking… he probably already finished the game twice?
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November 12th, 2011, 20:18
Originally Posted by Thaurin View Post
Oh, good. I was starting to wonder what some of the usual suspects thought of the game. You know, the ones that complained the loudest about Oblivion sometimes. I wonder what Maylander's thinking… he probably already finished the game twice?
Oh don't worry JDR will still be here

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November 12th, 2011, 20:22
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
Oh don't worry JDR will still be here
I don't think that's quite what he meant.

Good to see you're playing your usual role though rune.
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November 12th, 2011, 20:24
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
I don't think that's quite what he meant.

Good to see you're playing your usual role though rune.
Boohoo. Play the game then come talk about it.

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November 12th, 2011, 20:26
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
Boohoo. Play the game then come talk about it.
I like how you assume that I haven't. Anyways, I always enjoy watching you in action, so please don't stop.
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November 12th, 2011, 20:32
I'm going back to talking about the game now, sorry I poked you for a little fun, guess you don't have that thick of a skin.

Back on topic:

I think as time goes on, the interface frustration won't be as bad. As fort it being a horrible PC port? I don't know, seems to be working fine for me, I have seen other pc only games perform quite a bit worse at launch.

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November 12th, 2011, 20:37
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
I think as time goes on, the interface frustration won't be as bad. As fort it being a horrible PC port? I don't know, seems to be working fine for me, I have seen other pc only games perform quite a bit worse at launch.
At least now you're admitting that maybe the interface isn't for everyone. Was that so hard?

As far as it being a horrible port.. I haven't played the PC version yet, but I don't see anyone here claiming that there haven't been worse ports.
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November 12th, 2011, 21:22
The reviewer did make the same mistake I made, and many others, as this quote isn't entirely correct:

After rebinding the hotkey for the Favorites menu to "F" and the auto-walk key to "Q", I found that Favorites menu didn't want to open anymore. Curious, I pulled up my inventory and tried assigning some items to the Favorites - only it didn't work……Turns out, the "F" key is holy ground - because it controls the assigning of items to the Favorites menu, rebinding it to perform another function during regular gameplay, even a related function, makes it impossible to assign items and spells to it.
That statement is not true. The problem is that if you rebind a key that is *shared* then you need to use the same key for the shared functionality. What makes it confusing is that the in-game help text that displays the key to use does not update.

So if you map POV to be the HOME key (versus the default F key) and then go to assign favorites with the F key … it won't work as the F key is now HOME. So you then have to assign favorites using the HOME key and it will work. Took me two days to figure that out and only because someone posted about it on the forums.

Also there are some keys that don't map like this. For example if you map Ready/Sheath from R to INSERT then you can use INSERT to ready as well as drop items in inventory. BUT if you are looting and try to use INSERT to "take all" it won't … you still have to use R (at least from what I have found so far).

So yea the default mapping works great if people don't have a need to remap keys. But if you want to remap then its very poorly done and not well implemented or tested.

No idea how that got through Q&A. However the developers said they would work on it for the next patch.
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November 12th, 2011, 21:39
Originally Posted by wolfgrimdark View Post
So if you map POV to be the HOME key (versus the default F key) and then go to assign favorites with the F key … it won't work as the F key is now HOME. So you then have to assign favorites using the HOME key and it will work. Took me two days to figure that out and only because someone posted about it on the forums.
Oh, I get it now. That's definitely an 'oopsy.
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November 12th, 2011, 21:52
Originally Posted by wolfgrimdark View Post
No idea how that got through Q&A. However the developers said they would work on it for the next patch.
My guess is that QA was aware of a bunch of these issues, but that they had to choose between fixing them and hitting the 11/11 ship date. Since the date had been written in stone and couldn't be moved and the UI problems didn't render the game impossible to play… In essence they just ran out of time. I'm more inclined to blame the marketing and project management people than the QA folks.

My strategy of waiting a few months before firing this game up seems to be paying dividends.
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November 12th, 2011, 22:02
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
At least now you're admitting that maybe the interface isn't for everyone. Was that so hard?

As far as it being a horrible port.. I haven't played the PC version yet, but I don't see anyone here claiming that there haven't been worse ports.
As others have said, initially the PC interface is jarring. However, once you begin to realize that the Tab key and Q key pretty much get you everything you need it starts to feel fairly natural (the same way the Gothics did with their odd keyboard controls). 8 hours in now and I don't even notice the interface problems, with one exception: the perk selection window when you level up. I keep trying to use the arrow keys to arrow over from one skill tree to the next, but it seems that you need to actually click the mouse to move… maybe I'm missing something.

Otherwise, it is EASILY superior to Oblivion this far into the game. The emphasis on exploration (vs. obvious and unnecessary breadcrumbs) is a breath of fresh air in the Elder Scrolls series, and the kind of rambling fun I haven't experienced since Morrowind.
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November 12th, 2011, 22:03
..it's because it is at best a half-functional, poorly-performing wreck of a game.
That would be a half-functional, poorly-performing wreck of an exaggeration. He may have some points but, with statements like that, I'm not going to trust a word he says.
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November 12th, 2011, 22:41
This guy must have never played a TES game before since the ESC key has never been used to close menus in the TES games. (at least since Morrowind)
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November 12th, 2011, 22:51
The game is wonderful so far. Much of it reminds me of Morrowind, and I've found the introduction really opened me up to the game. I haven't felt any Oblivion vibes at all, which is a nice touch.

The only problem I'm having right now is cursor lag. I've dabbled in the .ini files (changed bMouseAcceleration=1 to bMouseAcceleration=0 and disabled Vsync by adding iPresentInterval=0 at the bottom of the Display section), and nothing seemed to change. Switching from ultra to low settings doesn't fix the problem, either. Is there anything I've missed?

Just so we're clear, I was told to change the .ini preferences in the Steam folder (not My Games folder).

Edit: I just solved my own problem. You don't want to add "iPresentInterval=0" to either of the SkyrimPref.ini files, like the articles mentioned. Instead, go to "My Games" folder, look for the Skyrim folder, and open up the Skyrim.ini file (not the SkyrimPrefs.ini file). Now add iPresentInterval=0 to the bottom of the [Display] section. Save and exit.

That fixed the problem entirely. Hopefully anyone who had similar issues notices this post.
Last edited by Ragnaris; November 12th, 2011 at 23:09.
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November 12th, 2011, 23:08
Well, I never need to read anything written by Eric Schwartz again. The interface certainly isn't perfect but that ridiculous hyperbole deserves ridicule.

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November 12th, 2011, 23:18
There are reviews talking about the interface being terrible for the PC on Amazon as well. Hopefully it can be tweaked in a substantial way to be customized for the PC by mods in the future. Too bad Bethesda didn't put more effort into their PC customers and apparently thought their console interface was "good enough". Also, many complaints that the game can't be played offline disconnected from steam without crashing eventually.
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