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Sprawozdanie z Diablo II: Od Aktów do Zoomua

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Interfejs
Pasek
Konfigurowalne Klawisze
Ekwipunek
Przedmioty
Księgi i Pergaminy
Klejnoty
Klucze
Broń, Pancerze i Więcej

Interfejs

The interface for Diablo II is great.  Much improved in many ways, easier to use, showing off more information, and better looking.  You really have to play it to appreciate all of the changes, both subtle and overt, but here are a few in a quick run down:

One great one is that to leave any shopping or conversation pop up screen, you can just left click anywhere on the screen outside of the window.  No need to hit the Esc key several times any more.  However, the Esc key still works, and you can also use the space bar.

A typical weapon info display

A larger addition is the sheer amount of information displayed when you hover the cursor over any item in the game.  You can see an item display here ,and skill tree here.  Much info, and it's a bit overwhelming when you are trying to take it all in at a glance while playing. Also, rather than the information fitting into the little text box at the bottom of the interface, as it did in Diablo, the info now pops up right where you are hovering, and at first you sort of recoil in alarm. Of course there isn't any box on the belt for text now, since the belt is redesigned and much smaller in Diablo II. This frees up more space for the action to take place in, which is a good thing. It's just a new look, and you will probably need a couple of games to get used to it.

Pretty much everything in the game has a hover tag on it:  All items, even on the ground, other characters, monsters, and even town portals, which now say where they will take you, rather than just the name of whoever cast them.

  • The Belt

Belt levels are improved.  Only blue and red potions are auto-placed in the belt (you can stick in stamina or other drinkable potions if you wish), they auto-stack in the proper column, and they drop down as you drink them.  Here is a table to illustrate this example.

  Column
One
Column
Two
Column
Three
Column
Four
Fourth Row        
Third Row   red RED blue
Second Row red red RED blue
Visible Level (1) red (2) RED (3) RED (4) BLUE

Belts this large (16 slots) are something you wouldn't find before maybe Clvl 20 or so, and you'd probably not have enough strength to wear one at that point anyway, unless you were a warrior-type character.  In this quick chart, red or blue are normal potions, and RED and BLUE are full recharge potions, which are much rarer, at least early in the game.  The way the belt now works is very clever.  The visible level is what you see in your belt when you are not hovering over it.  These slots are numbered 1-4, and correspond to the number keys, just like the belt did in Diablo.  The clever part is that things drop down as you drink them.

So if you hit "1" in this belt set up, the "red" on the Second Row in Column One would drop down to the visible level, and be ready if you hit "1" again. And things auto-stack (when you pick up potions without your inventory open) from left to right.  So if you picked up a full RED, it would go to the top of Column Three, and if you picked up two "reds", they would both go into Column One.  This works the same for all belts with two or more rows, and is very convenient in keeping things in their proper rows.

You can always move things around, and a new trick is that if you hover on the belt and get all the rows to display, you can hit the tilde "~" key (top left corner of the keyboard) and keep the belt displaying all the rows even when you are not hovering.  This is useful for stocking it more quickly, though it's easy to hit that key by accident since you are using Tab and 1 all the time, and it's a bit of a surprise if you first get it in the heat of combat.

  • Customisable hotkeys

All of the keyboard keys are fully customisable in Diablo II.  The way this worked when we were testing it was that you just hit "Esc" and got several text options, pretty much like they were in Diablo.  You could adjust the sound, music, gamma and more from that, save (in single-player), exit the game, etc.  And another one of the options was "Controls", and you clicked it and got a long text list in very small type of what every key was currently doing.  It was a simple matter to click on the one you wanted to change, and then just hit whatever key you wanted to perform that function.   The game then remembered them next time, saved to that character, which was convenient.

We did try them out, and liked them a lot.  Flux was using a Sorceress, and by around Clvl 18 had eight skills in regular use, so was using all eight skill hot keys, (default for these was F1-F8) and since his machine had a ergonomic keyboard, F7 and F8 were far out of easy reach.  He set them to "5" and "6", since those keys were in reach, and only 1-4 drink from the belt in Diablo II, and it was quite nice to have all eight hotkeys accessible without even moving one's hand. Gaile, with her Bow Amazon, was fairly unconcerned about re-keying the spells.  Because she had chosen to concentrate her spell selection somewhat, and since she was comfortable with the Diablo set-up (from excessive use ;-p), she simply kept her most-used skills as F-5 through F-8, where instinct took her.

We are looking forward to actually playing the game, and setting everything to custom.  For now most hotkeys are somewhat logical: "T" for Skill Trees, "C" for Character window, "I" for Inventory, etc.  But it seems likely that once players get used to the game and the interface, people will be setting everything to the left side of the keyboard [unless they are left-handed], for quicker access, and just memorising where all the keys are.   Most of the windows can be opened with one click on the "Mini Panel", (see it here) the small strip of icons just above your belt, so if you are uncomfortable with hot keys you can use that instead.

A requested inventory feature that will unfortunately not be in the game is some sort of weapon switch hot key. That would make it possible to switch instantly from bow and arrows to sword and shield, for instance. Blizzard North tested this out during the development cycle, but the issues of the different items taking up different amounts of space in inventory, and being dropped accidentally when switching were too much of a pain to put into the final game.

One thing that has long been a popular request is a yes/no prompt on quitting a game.  Anyone who has ever accidentally hit "Esc" and then clicked on "New Game" in Diablo knows this problem.  This feature is not implemented into Diablo II (yet) but it's less of an issue this time, since you don't have to use the Esc key to get out of all conversations and trade interactions with NPC's.  You can just click elsewhere on the screen, or hit the space bar.   So less chance of accidentally, leaving a game, but at the same time, adding a yes/no prompt would be such an easy thing to do, and it has no downside, so let's all feel free to continue asking about it.

Inventory

Your character's inventory is the same size as it was in Diablo, 4x10 spaces.  There is no bonus in size for a stronger character in terms of inventory space.  The only bonus added strength allows is meeting the requirements to wear a belt with more slots in it for potions, which is definitely a plus.  The basic belt is a default item, with four spaces for potions.  There are a couple of types of belts that you can wear, such as certain types of "sashes," that add armour or other bonuses, but still have only four potion shots.  Other belts or sashes allow 8, 12, or 16 slots, and the strength requirements increase as you go up.  These items aren't all that rare though; we saw numerous 12-slot belts just in Act One and early Act Two.

There was talk that there might be some sort of packs or bags of holding that you could put into your inventory to hold more stuff at once, or perhaps some sort of quest item later in the game that would expand your inventory somewhat, but this issue is still under debate.

For related topics, see Belt and Stash.

Items

Completely covering all information about items in Diablo II would be a website in itself.   There are probably five or ten times as many items as there were in Diablo.   More types of weapons and armour, new things like gems, lots of new types of potions, dozens of new prefixes and suffixes, etc.  So rather than try to cover them all here, we will instead give a short run down on a few of the new items, and save the more thorough descriptions for our upcoming Items Section.

Books and Scrolls

Books exist in Diablo II, but in much different form than they were in Diablo.  Books are now just scroll-holders, basically.  There are two types of books, Town Portal books, which are blue, and Identify books, which are red.  These are both 1x2 items in the inventory, and what they do is hold scrolls.  Any ID or TP scrolls you pick up will auto-stack in it when you have a book of that type.  Books hold up to twenty scrolls/charges of a spell, and each time you cast that spell the number of charges declines by one.

Scrolls are for sale in very large quantities, and are cheap (80 gold for Town Portal, 100 for Identify).  Also, monsters frequently drop scrolls, or even books with 2-5 charges, which also stack into your existing book, if there is room.  Once you rescue Cain from the Rogue Encampment, and get him identifying items for free, you'll most likely never run short on scrolls again, at least up through Act Three.

Town Portal and Identify are the only scrolls in the game.  Blizzard North has given some consideration to putting Resurrect back in, perhaps as a very rare or high-level scroll, but it was not in the game at the time of our testing.

  • Gems

Gems are used with the three types of socketable items: weapons, helms, and shields.  There are at least four types of gems, fire, lightning, poison, and cold, and five levels of gem quality.  The names are subject to change, but in best to worst, they are:

Perfect
Flawless
Normal (Just called by the gem type: "sapphire" or "diamond" for example.)
Flawed
Chipped

The only gems we saw for sale from NPCs were Chipped or Flawed.  Lower quality ones.  Possibly later in the game you can get the better quality gems for sale, or find them from monsters.  Higher quality gems imbue the item they are socketed into with better bonuses, so it is worth it to use better gems.  Besides hoping to find them, you can carry around a gem, and hope to encounter a Gem Shrine.  These shrines have a very cool function.  If you have no gems in your inventory when you find one, they will spit out one random gem of low quality.  But if you have a loose gem in your inventory, the Gem Shrine will upgrade it one level in quality.  So over time, you can assemble some perfect gems, which are extremely useful in socketed items.

  • Keys

Keys are used to open locked chests, which you can read more about here. Keys can stack up to ten high in one inventory space, though at the time of our testing there was but one graphic for them, so you had to hover over them to see how many you had.   Each time you click on a locked chest one key is automatically expended to open it.   Keys are dropped occasionally by monsters, and also can be purchased in town for a very low price.  There has been discussion at Blizzard North of including locked doors as well as chests, but the consensus is that it would be a nuisance if you got stuck at a door and didn't have a key, and had to go back to town to get some more.  So we probably won't see locked doors in Diablo II.

  • Weapons, Armour, Potions and Other Items

We have extensive information on weapons, armour, potions, and other items, but these sections will be very large and detailed, with many images for illustrative purposes, and as such don't fit into this report.  They will be premiering in our Items Section , which is currently under construction.

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