The inventory screen desperately needs an overhaul when it comes to showing and displaying armor and clothes you’re wearing. It’s very bulky and disorganized at the moment, showing clothes by the order you used/applied them instead of by the way they’re worn (innermost => outermost) or by category (head, torso, feet etc).
This is what the current inventory screen looks like (for comparison purposes):
I was looking at the clothing-layering screen (activated by pressing =) and realized it does a very good job at displaying worn items, showing both body-part categories and layer-order in a simple way and in one concentrated place. It doesn’t take much space, and could easily be fitted into the (i)nventory screen, without having to code anything new (hopefully) or implementing any new features. Now, I don’t know any coding, but thought I could perhaps demonstrate how it would look if the right side of the layering screen was “copy-pasted” (with a few changes) into the Inventory replacing the existing “Items worn” category:
There are two major differences between the hybrid and the original “Items worn” inventory:
- Clothes are not displayed by the order you wore them, but by categories. Also, the actual layers are present: uppermost item is the innermost layer, and lowermost item is the outermost layer, just like in the regular Layers screen.
- I chose not to include the clothing/armor health-bar display (||), simply because item color can do the same thing. Health-bars can be included which would get rid of most problems that come with the color change, and the rest of this change ignored. But, if we do use coloring, dark-green can be reinforced clothing, green can be full-health clothing, yellow can be damaged clothing, purple can be heavily-damaged clothing and red can be nearly-destroyed clothing. The hybrid would display them like this:
Along with the changes come two big questions:
- Does the layering screen become obsolete?
- How do you solve color-clashing between the hybrid-section and the regular inventory? (Yellow is used when an item is turned on and for damaged clothing, dark green is used for a weapon and matching ammo, but also on reinforced clothing etc)
Here’s what I think;
The layers-screen doesn’t become obsolete because it is generally more specific and detailed than the inventory screen. First of all, I deliberately removed left/right limb distinction from the hybrid (mostly because it isn’t really used, but still). The layer-screen can keep this distinction instead. Second of all, the hybrid doesn’t display warmth, storage and encumbrance the way the L-screen does, and as such using the latter is more convenient than checking each item in the inventory separately. Third of all, you can’t actually re-layer stuff from the inventory even though the layer order is there. You’ll have to go to the actual (=) menu to do this.
Like I mentioned earlier, this change can be completely ignored and only the first one implemented. It would be more convenient and new-user-friendly, but doing it this way is still an option. The actual-inventory/hybrid color clash can be solved in a few ways:
a) Perhaps the least reasonable thing to do, yet still an option, is to ignore the clash completely. The colors in the inventory mean one thing, but are actually the health display when the item is on the hybrid side (as clothes/armor). This is confusing for new players and old players alike, and doesn’t solve health and item-is-on clash, but I’m sure someone could think of a way to make this work.
b) [ON] tag, just like the (fits) tag on clothing. Simply put, the item name doesn’t change color when activated, but rather gets a [ON] tag to show that it is being used and draining batteries. That way the clothing can have the name-color display health, and the [ON] tag display when it is activated.
M - head torch (95)
M - [ON] head torch (95)
This doesn’t solve the matching-ammo/reinforced clothing problem, but could be used nonetheless.
c) Probably the best solution, have item-letters (and symbols if on) change color instead of item names, so the names can display health and the letters display anything else. The letter of an activated item will be yellow, the symbol of matching ammo dark-green etc. As far as I’m aware, the only problem this doesn’t solve is an unread book and nearly-destroyed armor clash, but I can’t think of anything that will solve this except
d) changing any other item-coloring so nothing clashes with the main four that display clothing health. I mean, it IS possible, just very inconvenient for anybody who already learned what every color means.
So, what do you think? Would you like to see this in-game? Do you have any other solution to what I suggested? Is there anything that could be changed/enhanced to make the playing experience better? Please do comment and let me know.