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Let's discuss the direction of the new UI.

PelmaleonPelmaleon Member Posts: 14
Firstly, I'd like to state that this isn't one of those "don't fix what ain't broke because my rose-tinted glasses will shatter and my nostalgia boner will become flaccid" posts. I hate that anti-intellectual platitude with a passion because things (virtually anything) CAN be improved or revised through ingenuity and hard work.

Having said that, I strongly believe that the direction many of the UI changes went down are veritably immersion-breaking and tawdry.

Here are the ones which, when I see them, forcibly push me out of our great role-playing game and (varyingly) shatter the fourth wall:

Ability to scroll too far off of maps and see blocks of darkness, instead of stopping the camera at the edge to enable our imagination to fill in the blanks off the map.

Dark boxes around text - this includes the pixelated boxes around journal entries, the ones which pop over a person's head during an action scene, and the ones which are underneath the location text on the maps, all which now get rid of the feeling of a hand-drawn world and map.

The new map UI is too virtual and not fantastical enough, like it used to be. Leave the options ("Area map background" and "map notes") to the options menu. And the removal of the World Map button in favor of a written "World Map" also just pushes the game away from a strikingly immersive experience and into a cheap one. Lastly, the zooming out from your characters to the map completely eradicates the old feeling of having hand-drawn maps and now just makes me feel like I'm playing a too-virtual video game.

I have one more complaint which doesn't have to do with the UI but instead customizability: why leave out the ability to learn spells automatically on higher difficulties? That "feature" in the original Baldur's Gate was completely idiotic. Sure, if one had the time to replay the game over ten times then it would make each playthrough a slightly more unique, thought-provoking experience as you had to utilize different tools and be without other important ones because of spell failure. But for most people, the people who only have the time to play through the game a handful of times (which is still well over hundreds of hours), it greatly impedes the flow of the experience to have to change the options to "Normal" instead of "Core" everytime you get a new spell.

Anyway, I hope you take some time to ruminate about some of the changes you made and about how much they are (varyingly) affecting immersion and the harmony of art styles and themes (the cartoonish cinematics which strayed away from the original game's vision of a sometimes dark and gritty fantasy world are another story for another time...).

Thanks for reading, and thanks for working on one of the greatest games of all time.

Please post your comments below if you agree and/or disagree with my contentions but more importantly please post why.

Edit: I've also noticed that all dropcaps (the initial, fancy letter of the first word of the first sentence of books) have been removed from item descriptions. This feels like yet another decision which pushes the game away, instead of towards, a fantasy-esque feeling.

And I know the entire EE map art style is probably too late into the development process to be changed, seeing as Siege of Dragonspear just game out, but was it impossible for the devs to utilize the old map, seen here?:

It gave off the impression that the player character had a personal, detailed map created for him by friends at Candlekeep (or that he bought or stole) - a map which showed impassable terrain blocked by gargantuan mountains, dense, lush, and possibly dangerous forests, and more.

Post edited by Pelmaleon on


  • AionZAionZ Member Posts: 3,256
    edited March 2016
    Okok, should probably post some of the actual issues I have the new UI and other general usability.

    So far no functional problems that I've seen. Everything works right. However, there are some visual gaffes that I noticed within 5 minutes of checking out the new UI. Take this for instance:

    Something doesn't look right here...

    Honestly, I dislike the lack of separation between text in the stats menu, list of scripts, etc. It looks messy and clustered. Put some spacing between lines. Put them in a box. Do something. As it is it honestly feels like a visual downgrade.

    I seriously think that the portrait and stats should be on the left and the text on the right. By the way, this may just be me not doing my research but does that empty box under Level Up do anything? Why is it there? Never mind. Figured out what it was.

    I actually love the new map, except I hate it. For starters, this might just be my resolution but the map is surrounded by an awful black box. At least put a border on the edges or something. Secondly I have lost my ability to drag the green box around.

    Your cursor no longer disappears when you pick up an item in your inventory. I hate this. Please tell me there's a way to change it back.

    Please, please, please for the love of the gods make the 'Custom' option in portraits do something again. There are two major problems with how you've done it. Firstly, I have about 100 custom portraits and no way to easily select the one I want. Secondly, I can no longer have a different large and small portrait. So if I have a full body portrait that little icon at the right is a minuscule body shot instead of a face.

    Please switch the 'Cancel' and 'Done' buttons in the option menus back around. It's confusing as hell. And oh great, you did it with the load option too. Change it back. Oh and speaking of the load button, sometimes clicking on it does nothing. Anyone else getting this issue?

    The squares in your spellbook indicating empty spell slots are barely visible. Please make them darker. I also think they're too small but maybe that's because I don't play with scaled interface.

    Gameplay options: I have a major issue with the format of this but it's difficult to put into words, so I drew a picture to show what I mean:

    Your descriptions are nowhere near long enough to justify this much wasted space. And even if they were, I'd rather scroll through descriptions than gameplay options.

    Will post more as I find more issues and things I dislike.

    Edit: ...okay this is starting to annoy me. Not that it's a big issue at all but it seems to be the kind of thing you'd notice immediately. So when you enable Story Mode, the difficulty slider decides to do this:

    Post edited by AionZ on
  • psudonym55psudonym55 Member Posts: 3
    Why does the character sheet have a space for inventory and a space for spells when we already have a spellbook were all the spells can be clearly seen and and inventory to see the items we have? Those two tabs seem completely redundant and a waste of space. Also I would like to echo what has been said previously the squares in the spellbook are far far too small verging on unreadable.

  • MivsanMivsan Member Posts: 139
    I've already posted a lot of my feelings about the UI in my thread here and don't want to repeat the same stuff, but one thing I can add to what you describe, specifically the fantastical feeling which seems to have been lost to some extent, is their removal of the piece of parchment rolling out when you highlighted an item or character. Now it's just an alien-looking gray box that doesn't fit at all. Seems as though they were imported from a sci-fi game into a fantasy style UI of BG.

    As for the scribing failure mechanic - not to derail the topic, but there are Potions of Genius, Potions of Mind Focusing and the Red Potion you can use to ensure scribing success, which seemed to be the intended way to go about it: gather scrolls for a while and do a "scribing session" for your intellect-boosted wizards. That's a huge digression, though. I'm always for more customization and I agree that not having an option like that when you already have stuff the likes of "Max HP on level up" is not great design.

  • wubblewubble Member Posts: 3,156
    Aside from the stuff that has been said above about the feel of the new UI, It looks to mee like everything has been cut out and put in different places but they don't quite fit properly, this leaves gaps and sharp edges that don't look right, it also leaves the entire character page looking a bit square as it's divided up into boxes.

  • prairiechickenprairiechicken Member Posts: 149
    So far I like the new ui (except bugs). The fonts in inventory however goes whacko if you make it bigger.

  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
    edited March 2016
    Are you playing BGEE with patch 2 and without SoD installed? Because with SoD installed I'm not seeing the visual bugs.

  • wubblewubble Member Posts: 3,156
    Mine was BGEE without. give me 40 mins and i'll check with SOD.

  • wubblewubble Member Posts: 3,156
    I'm not seeing any problems with the UI in SOD , I must admit it looks much cleaner in SOD as they've built it from the ground up rather than moving bits of the old ui around. It looks rather nice, I still prefer the old view but this is better than the adapted BGEE view.

  • typo_tillytypo_tilly Member Posts: 5,702
    edited April 2016
    Yeah, that's what I've got. It's strange seeing all the visual bugs of everyone else above. :(

  • ZeshinXZeshinX Member Posts: 88
    edited April 2016
    The new UI is ugly as hell. I don't know where the dev fetish for various shades of black comes from, but it must be stopped.

    I vastly preferred the 1.3 UI and look forward to the inevitable mod to revert this horrid monstrosity back to something far better (not perfect, but better than this ugly, unwieldy thing).

    Just returning to the 1.3 colours would at least make it slightly less painful and far easier to look at/find information.

  • TarakTarak Member Posts: 12
    The UI changes look okay so far. What could be improved is to push the lowest chat line a bit higher that letters like y and g are fully visible. That white crossbeam on the border could also be removed:

  • ZeshinXZeshinX Member Posts: 88
    Mivsan said:

    I've already posted a lot of my feelings about the UI in my thread here and don't want to repeat the same stuff, but one thing I can add to what you describe, specifically the fantastical feeling which seems to have been lost to some extent, is their removal of the piece of parchment rolling out when you highlighted an item or character. Now it's just an alien-looking gray box that doesn't fit at all. Seems as though they were imported from a sci-fi game into a fantasy style UI of BG.

    That is indeed my thoughts as well. This UI has completely abandoned the "feel" of BG, it's charisma and flavour. After reading the many articles and interviews, the one big talking point was "Is this BG?" when they were making SoD. (like in this great article:

    This UI is most definitely NOT Baldur's Gate.

  • M0tanM0tan Member Posts: 61
    If I start a new BG:EE game, the UI looks like the one from SoD. Is this normal? Dragon logo and everything.

    I would have expected the UI to look like the one from beta testing for 2.0 and switch to the black/dragon theme as soon as the player starts SoD.

  • chilvencechilvence Member Posts: 50
    Love the new UI to bits, especially the fact that I can change it however I like. Especially love the map zoom effect, I actually thought that it should be done that way myself.

    There's some rough edges, but nothing that can't be beaten out.

  • tortuosittortuosit Member Posts: 63
    edited April 2016
    Well I liked all UI changes in the EE beta 2.0 - until SoD. I absolutely don't like the colors! It's all so black now. BG EE looks not as... friendly.. as before.

  • DjinnDjinn Member Posts: 76
    I, personally, would like the option to have the new SoD UI implemented on both BG:EE and BG2:EE. And I've been a fan since the first BG was released in '98.

  • wubblewubble Member Posts: 3,156
    Djinn said:

    I, personally, would like the option to have the new SoD UI implemented on both BG:EE and BG2:EE. And I've been a fan since the first BG was released in '98.

    It's already been implemented.

  • tortuosittortuosit Member Posts: 63
    edited April 2016
    Anyone into modding or that lua files thing?

    I just don't like the coloring that the original BG1 campaign gets. The black theme, it looks rather grim. BG I EE without DLC looks more friendly with the blue/brown colors. I wish this could be easily changed. Maybe I even want see the old colors in SoD.

    As of now I can only deactivate the DLC (e.g. rename "..\Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition\dlc\")

    Any ideas what can be done?

    Post edited by tortuosit on
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