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Default Skyrim - PC Interface Frustration @ GamaSutra

November 13th, 2011, 15:24
I'm kind of shocked at the reception the UI is getting…have you guys not played the witcher or gothic games? This is light years beyond those atrocities. It also completely blows all the other elder scrolls games inventories to bits.

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November 13th, 2011, 15:30
Originally Posted by DeepO View Post
It´s not impossible.
Hold left mouse button with the pointer being in the area items are displayed in and rotate away by moving the mouse.
Pressing "c" will bring items to a bit closer view.
Just tryed. It doesn't work.
Items don't move or rotate.

I like this game very much on the rpg side but the interface could be really better than this.

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November 13th, 2011, 15:35
I always find it interesting when someone says any game (for the most part) requires min-maxing as that is usuually (with rare exceptions, notably in MMO games where you are doing PvP or raiding) a fallacy based on play style and difficulty setting.

I know I personally would prefer to take skills, talents, stats and equipment I feel compliment my characters role, personality and theme then worry about min/max. If I run into difficulty because of this I just lower the difficulty. Yet I still seldom find any issues. Some games, certainly, can have some balance issues, but few are outright broken.

I am playing a very NON min/max character in Skyrim and ran into some problems … but I changed my strategy and in both cases turned the table on the boss battle. Just took some creative thinking. I only resort to lowering difficulty as a last resort as I prefer to think of ways around a problem.

EDIT: In regards to UI I had some major issues early on but after 2 days of playing and research I have finally gotten it down and working. It should not be this obscure though and it was *poorly* implemented no questions there.

A MANUAL would have been a huge help. I have looked all over the net but can't find one. Even on Steam (and normally steam has a list for one or installs it in the apps folder as a PDF). Anyonw know of where I can get a manual online?
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November 13th, 2011, 17:58
Originally Posted by wolfgrimdark View Post
A MANUAL would have been a huge help. I have looked all over the net but can't find one. Even on Steam (and normally steam has a list for one or installs it in the apps folder as a PDF). Anyonw know of where I can get a manual online?
Right-click on the game and select "view manual." It's pretty worthless though, honestly. What you need to do is go to the in-game help menu, which has exhaustive details on everything. In-game help is how it works now.
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November 13th, 2011, 18:03
The key mapping issue is bugging the hell out of me currently. I remapped F to Y and R to F and Q to R. And boy does that play havok with the inventory screen. The standard inventory uses the new mapping but shows the hotkeys as the old mapping. The Container Inventory uses the original mapping. Nothing seems horribly unworkable after this but it plays tricks on me as I keep dropping things in normal inventory that I want to mark as favorite or something.

The other thing that bugs me is having to use Tab to exit menus. With this streamlined interface I guess I can adapt but I keep just wanting to use the key that opened the screen to close it again.

I'm liking the game itself and would really like it more if this gets fixed very soon. I'm sure that will not be the only complaint but then again I'm not exactly surprised after what they did with Oblivion and Fallout.
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November 13th, 2011, 18:20
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
I'm kind of shocked at the reception the UI is getting…have you guys not played the witcher or gothic games? This is light years beyond those atrocities. It also completely blows all the other elder scrolls games inventories to bits.
I agree with all of this.
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November 13th, 2011, 18:57
Originally Posted by NFLed View Post
I agree with all of this.
After a few more hours of getting used to the scheme I think the UI is a good concept. It's just for some that it's not up their alley. I could use some tweaks like a smaller font and better at-a-glance character stat information, but the structure's a decent one and on the whole I like it. My problems are essentially that it's buggy (primarily the key-mapping issue and the mouse/key behavior when navigating the lists).

The bugs? Evidenced by the day-one patch they didn't think through the mouse behavior. It was kind of slapped on. That appears to have affected the list zoom/highlight behavior, essentially de-coupling them and causing some odd behaviors (selecting a highlighted item way up at the top while a zoomed item is next to the list pointer).

Re-mapping is just a clustercuss. A dev explanation was that they didn't want to make everything remappable because it would require too much memory to load images for all keyboard keys (eg- the "<return> <spacebar>" bitmaps). But they didn't properly sequester those keys to prevent the weird behavior people are encountering. That was pretty sloppy and last minute

As I said before, they definitely don't get an "oh it's such an open game, how could they catch everything" pass from me on it. It's the UI. It should be polished to within an inch of its life no matter the platform.

Thaurin, my apologies. You were clearly referring to the article. I went back and read the guy's column more thoroughly and it pretty much was an "internetz rant". I still say many of the issues are legitimate but the writing and tone was… poor.


Overall and besides the UI issues (and the continued paring back of skills <sniff>), I think the best one word summary of Skyrim is that it's basically Oblivion++, what Oblivion should have been to some and an even better Oblivion to others.
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November 13th, 2011, 19:00
The (mouse+keyboard) UI is definitely the weakest part of this game - I'm enjoying the rest of it immensely. My single biggest issue with the interface is the quick menu, and my inability to Favourite spell or weapon combos. I have tried again and again, tried to follow suggestions - just can't get it to work. All I want is to be able to hot key a combo like ward+lightning. You can map a dual wield combo of the same spell or weapon - that just works, but I have not for the life of me been able to figure out the general case - and its driving me up the wall.

So, any *clear* instruction on how to Favourite (so I can press 1 single number)

* Ward (right button) + lightning (left button) (mapped to 1)
* weapon +shield (mapped to 2)

As for the game, I enjoy the exploration aspect - so I love rooting about in the caves etc. Most do not feel generic, which is great. Haven't seen much of the other touted Radiant features though. I also thought that absorbing a dragon soul would activate inactive shouts? I have found two so far that are still greyed out, despite having killed 3 dragons (i think they are 1st level shout fragments)
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November 13th, 2011, 19:05
Originally Posted by Khalus View Post
I'll admit, the PC UI is a bit sketchy, {really though, its just when using the mouse inside menus thats giving me issues, but I've mostly been using the KB, so all good for now.}
I take this back. Turns out that it was on my end as to why it felt so sluggish. Just bought a new HDTV and when I loaded Bandicam to check what FPS I was getting I noticed it was capping out at 24Hz.

I forgot to change it to 60Hz in 1920*1080 from the nVidia CP. First time I've used an DVI>HDMI cable with my PC so my bad.


I was also about to go on a complaint rant that my load times when exiting into the world sometimes were as long as 3-4min, but that fixed itself with the above Hz increase. Its only about 2-5sec now…heh!
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November 13th, 2011, 19:29
Originally Posted by booboo View Post
As for the game, I enjoy the exploration aspect - so I love rooting about in the caves etc. Most do not feel generic, which is great. Haven't seen much of the other touted Radiant features though. I also thought that absorbing a dragon soul would activate inactive shouts? I have found two so far that are still greyed out, despite having killed 3 dragons (i think they are 1st level shout fragments)
Have you gotten any "collect 0/20" quests or run into a guy that needs an escort back to camp? I think those are radiant quests.

I think combos are impossible, you just select to activate one thing at a time. My current setup (still early) is 1) sword, 2) bow, 3) offensive magic, 4) shield, 5) healing potion.

If I tap 3 twice I get the double-effective spell. Then if I tap 1 I get a RH sword+spell. Then if I tap 4 I get LH shield replacing the spell. That make sense?
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November 13th, 2011, 19:38
Originally Posted by Gragnak View Post
Just tryed. It doesn't work.
Items don't move or rotate.
Weird, it certainly works in my game.

Originally Posted by figment View Post
The other thing that bugs me is having to use Tab to exit menus. With this streamlined interface I guess I can adapt but I keep just wanting to use the key that opened the screen to close it again.
You can also exit the menus (magic, inventory, skills, containers) with the mouse by left clicking on the edge of the screen closest to the menu, aka left edge of the screen for inventory and containers, bottom edge for skills, right edge for magic.

Originally Posted by booboo View Post
I also thought that absorbing a dragon soul would activate inactive shouts? I have found two so far that are still greyed out, despite having killed 3 dragons (i think they are 1st level shout fragments)
You have to "unlock" the shouts in their menu, "r" is the default key for that.
Unlocking a shout will spend a dragon soul.

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Last edited by DeepO; November 13th, 2011 at 20:00.
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November 13th, 2011, 19:41
skyrim nexus has over 100 mods already. most are textures but one is a key remapper. Haven't played the game yet so I don't know if it's any good but it's there if you want to try it.
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November 13th, 2011, 20:06
Originally Posted by Bedwyr View Post
Have you gotten any "collect 0/20" quests or run into a guy that needs an escort back to camp? I think those are radiant quests.

I think combos are impossible, you just select to activate one thing at a time. My current setup (still early) is 1) sword, 2) bow, 3) offensive magic, 4) shield, 5) healing potion.

If I tap 3 twice I get the double-effective spell. Then if I tap 1 I get a RH sword+spell. Then if I tap 4 I get LH shield replacing the spell. That make sense?
I'm not sure which are the radiant quests but I have had a few random encounters while walking along telling me about places to go…I even got one from a guard in the first city.

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November 13th, 2011, 20:16
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
I'm not sure which are the radiant quests but I have had a few random encounters while walking along telling me about places to go…I even got one from a guard in the first city.

I think not being sure may actually be a really really good sign. The humans are fooled.
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November 13th, 2011, 20:19
Originally Posted by Bedwyr View Post
I think not being sure may actually be a really really good sign. The humans are fooled.
I would think that's what they want An amazing game so far…

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November 13th, 2011, 20:31
I was just thinking… this is the most-alive and best-looking open world I have ever seen (and don't give me Gothic, this beats it hands down so far), but it doesn't really impress me any more. Gothic, Morrowind, even Oblivion made my jaw drop and I still have memories of specific encounters. If I would have played Skyrim then, I don't know what I'd do.

But it's like I'm saturated. I should be extatic, but my enthusiasm has been numbed by all the graphical awesomeness of this generation of video games.
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November 13th, 2011, 20:55
Originally Posted by Thaurin View Post
I was just thinking… this is the most-alive and best-looking open world I have ever seen (and don't give me Gothic, this beats it hands down so far), . . . . ..
I'll give you Gothic.

Skyrim is a good game, I'm only 20 hours in and can hardly wait to get back to it. One thing Gothic has that Skyrim doesn't is the ability to walk up and talk to bandits. I've tried changing clothing, hoping it would throw off the bandits but no go. In the early game thus far, Bandits are just target fodder. The highway robbers I understand attacking anyone but some times the bandits are just sitting down at a camp fire or a food sorting station minding their own business and if I get to close they attack. It's surprising Bethesda handled the game play this way because in Fallout Vegas, if you were wearing faction uniform that faction would leave you alone.

Oh well, enough posting - time to get back to the game
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November 13th, 2011, 21:12
I got to grips with UI fairly quickly with WASD. However I still drink potions by mistake instead of "giving" them to companion. Perks menu is too slow to navigate left and right.
Favourites should be easier for each hand.
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November 13th, 2011, 21:48
Originally Posted by Dajjer View Post
I'll give you Gothic.
I meant from a purely technical view, Skyrim blows Gothic away. I don't mean graphically, that's to be expected, but this time they really seem to have pulled off the NPC schedules and banter. There is no nonsense talk between towns folk any more and they have actual conversations about the current state of the world. I'm not sure if that's all scripted, but even if it's party Radiant AI, that's pretty impressive.

The world is huge and less focussed than Gothic, and the setting is different. These things are mostly subjective. I think I like Gothic's setting better, too.
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November 13th, 2011, 22:06
Originally Posted by wolfgrimdark View Post
I always find it interesting when someone says any game (for the most part) requires min-maxing as that is usuually (with rare exceptions, notably in MMO games where you are doing PvP or raiding) a fallacy based on play style and difficulty setting.

I know I personally would prefer to take skills, talents, stats and equipment I feel compliment my characters role, personality and theme then worry about min/max. If I run into difficulty because of this I just lower the difficulty. Yet I still seldom find any issues. Some games, certainly, can have some balance issues, but few are outright broken.

I am playing a very NON min/max character in Skyrim and ran into some problems … but I changed my strategy and in both cases turned the table on the boss battle. Just took some creative thinking. I only resort to lowering difficulty as a last resort as I prefer to think of ways around a problem.

EDIT: In regards to UI I had some major issues early on but after 2 days of playing and research I have finally gotten it down and working. It should not be this obscure though and it was *poorly* implemented no questions there.

A MANUAL would have been a huge help. I have looked all over the net but can't find one. Even on Steam (and normally steam has a list for one or installs it in the apps folder as a PDF). Anyonw know of where I can get a manual online?
What level are you? I was playing at the hihgest dificulty setting as a mage wioth robes and foudn that i get killed with one hit as i levelled and need 4 hits to kill the "apprentice" mobs. Never had that problem before early when i was going purely destruction. I am now resorting to heavy armor and quaffing a lot of potions now that i set it on easy it seems a little better. I alwasy hated the system where the enemies level with you.

But i think that Oblivion is worse than this, my friend beat that game on level 5 quite easily.
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