I’ve received a lot of great feedback from last week’s article on the usability of the Diablo 3 auction house. So much feedback in fact, this week I want to cover five more points on the topic:
- Searching for named items
- No arrow key support in named item autocomplete
- Finding items with socketed gems
- Bonus Minimum Damage on accessories
- Unhelpful item recommendations
Diablo 3 was released recently to much fanfare in the gaming community. The much anticipated game doesn’t stray too far from its roots; the gameplay is pretty true to the click-and-kill formula popularized by the legendary Diablo 2. Not to say that nothing has changed of course – one massive new feature is the addition of the auction house where gamers can buy and sell in-game items for in-game currency or real money.
The auction house, while not the first of its kind, makes a huge difference in how players attack the game. With the popularity of Diablo 3, it’s also got a huge variety of items that have been randomly generated from around the world. The items don’t ever get destroyed, so unlike with real world auctions, there’s no reason the total number of items is ever going to decrease. That means there needs to be an efficient way to search through all these items. Unfortunately, that way doesn’t exist yet, because right now the auction house is…you could say…”hell” to use.
The free to play, PvP sensation League of Legends (LoL) is custom crafted to cultivate expert use. From the welcoming screens right on to the last click, Riot Games makes expertise in gameplay an obvious priority. What makes the gameplay so brilliant? Focus on intrinsic, intuitive actions and a manageable cognitive load.
The weapon system has gone through a number of changes in the Mass Effect series. In the first game, there were just so many weapons that you picked up along the way, managing them all was ridiculous. Not to mention trying to make a well informed decision about what you should be using. The disaster of that game’s inventory is well documented elsewhere (my favorite is at gamedesignreviews.com), but suffice to say it wasn’t good.
In Mass Effect 2, they solved the problems from the first game by essentially getting rid of the whole thing. I’m not sure I ever changed my weapons in the entirety of Mass Effect 2 – that’s how much they got rid of the system. Fair enough.
So in Mass Effect 3, BioWare got back into the swing of things a little bit with a small amount of weapon customization and upgrading. Continue reading