Skill Overhaul: The Result
Work on the skills overhaul continued, including the latest round of feedback, and here's how it's looking:
I think there were some excellent points made in yesterday's feedback, and I was able to incorporate most of it in this new layout.
First of all, I decided to change "Skills" to "Abilities," and "Traits" to "Flaws," for clarity and accuracy. Strong is not a skill, per se, and "trait" isn't necessarily negative to the average person. "Abilities" and "Flaws" are more accurate for what we're talking about here, so I changed the language. (Code and game data references still use the old names, however, for compatibility reasons.)
Secondly, I took the suggestion to make the page more symmetric. Now both flaws and abilities simply flow to the right, so it should be clearer where things go. I removed the "Default" flaws, and gave the player free points to start instead, as you guys were right that it was confusing.
I also replaced the wordy instructions with simple arrows, which I think say pretty much the same thing in way less time. Stuff on the left goes to the right. And the green/orange "Amount Used/Left" text tells you how much you've used vs. have left. I've removed the Flaw total text, since it was kind of redundant. And I decided to leave the warning for Flaws, as it was important information not communicated elsewhere.
One of the invisible changes here is the first moddable game variable: starting points. As some of you suggested, it'd be nice to mod the number of starting points available. So I created a new data table called "gamevars" which stores name/value pairs for use in the game. Right now, it's just that starting points number. However, I think I can move some other stuff into there when I have time (e.g. starting date, starting hex coords, maybe even combat modifiers for strong, etc.).
A large chunk of the day had to be spent on fixing the various skill/trait functionality elsewhere in the game, now that traits don't use slots anymore. In particular, I had a lot of rewiring to do in Haggerty Health's eye augmentations, and some Yezinka clean-up.
Overall, this feels like a significant improvement in both UI and game balance, and I'm excited to try it out! Before that, however, I think it's time to promote v0.9942b to default build status. It has a few bugs, but seems otherwise stable. So I'll be working on that next week, so we can begin testing this next wave of test builds.
Have a good weekend, all!