I'm finally getting around to working on battle mode once again and I'm going to address the features and visuals to the stamina bar. I'm working on a new draft of visuals right now which I will share here to get some opinions, but here's what I'm planning to do.
First lets review. I explained the four states (besides "dead") an actor can be in battle: idle, warm-up, action, cool-down. The problem we discussed was that the stamina bar currently has 3 colors (yellow, orange, red) but currently the battle code only has the actor icons in two of those states. We discussed changing the bar to 4 colors and to 2 colors. I think we've focused too much on the bar and have neglected to think about how we can use the stamina icons. My proposal is the following.
- Only idle and warm-up states are indicated by the stamina bar. The stamina bar is broken up into two sections for each state. Idle state area consumes 70% of the bar height, warm-up consumes 30% of the bar height.
- The two states are separated by a distinct separator line. Lets call it the "command line" since when an actor reaches that position, they have to select a command.
- Each state has a different fill gradient. Right now I'm thinking (from bottom to top): light blue to dark blue for idle, then yellow to red for warm-up.
- When an actor is in the cool-down state, their icon sits at the bottom of the idle bar and their stamina portrait outline glows a blue or purple color to indicate that they are in that state.
- When an actor is in the action state, we can either leave their icon at the top of the bar or fade it away so its no longer visible, or draw a red outline around their stamina icon to indicate that state.
Like I said, I'll come up with some images and show you guys what it would look like.
Roots wrote:Grandia II also has a battle timer bar. When an actor in the battle got hit, their position would jump backwards a little and they'd be stunned for about a second, then their stamina would start building again. They also had a warm-up section of their bar in addition to the idle section, and you could not change what section they were in (ie if you hit them during warm-up, the worst you could do was return them to the bottom of the warm-up section of the bar). You could even execute some skills which would actually cancel their warm-up period altogether and return them to the start of the idle timer.
..... I really think we should put this feature in our battle system. Maybe not exactly the same thing as Grandia II, but something similar. It makes the battles so much more fun and you actually have to pay attention to the timer bar. What do you guys think?
I just want to re-affirm my commitment to seeing this feature in the game at some point. Here's a video showing a battle from Grandia II. Their "stamina bar" is on the lower right corner of the screen. Observe how the position of the actors changes when they get hit.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITF20x4QkG8
The proposals I'm making are actually quite similar to the stamina bar in Grandia II, except for changing the border on the character portraits
Winter Knight wrote:On the subject of battle timing, the actors act to quickly when they attack. In FF I/II/III (and maybe later ones too), whenever it was somebody's turn to attack, the timers would freeze, and we could see the character do his thing, and we had the text description too. In Allacrost, when somebody attacks, it takes significantly less than a second. It is often difficult to tell what happened. So far, we have been working around this by making the battles painfully slow.
Now, I'm not saying we should do exactly what some Final Fantasys did, 5 seconds of animation is too long for watching a spell that I had cast several times already, but it would be great if the timers would freeze, and the actors would animate for about 2 seconds when they attack.
I agree that actors act too quickly in battle, but there's not much we can do right now except to slow down the animation of the characters and enemies.