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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

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Inventory Mechanics In The Broken Hourglass
11:48 AM | Cord Kruse | 1 comment

Planewalker Games has posted a new bit of information about its upcoming fantasy RPG, The Broken Hourglass. The latest update offers a detailed analysis of the unique inventory system used by the game. The Broken Hourglass will feature a new CRPG engine developed by Planewalker Games, a 2D isometric viewpoint reminiscent of classics in the genre, and a mod friendly design.

There is no clear formula that provides the perfect balance of player convenience and intriguing simulation, but in The Broken Hourglass, we have designed inventory and rules relating to equipment management around these guidelines:

- Maximize the usefulness of carried objects by providing multiple equipment groups which players may select between using a single click.
- No equipment management "mini-games." Players should not have to be good Tetris players or trunk-packers in order to have their characters carry equipment properly.
- The game should not force players to leave interesting or important objects lying around. The game should also not force players to run a shuttle cargo service.
- No arbitrary limits on the number of items in an inventory.
- Ensure that all of the above still make sense while still preserving a concept of equipment weight and encumbrance.

There are two linchpins to our solution.

The first is the concept of party inventory . Every creature in The Broken Hourglass is considered to be the member of some party. The player character and his or her allies form one party. The garrison at the city gates would form another party. A merchant and his guards would represent yet another party. Just as every creature has an inventory, every party is granted an inventory as well. All members of a party may put items into or take items out of that party's inventory.

The second linchpin is the itemset . Each creature in the game may have up to four unique, independently-managed lists of equipment ready to go at any moment. Switching between these equipment sets is done in zero-time--that is, the character incurs no penalty and the player need only click one button to make the switch. (If an attack is underway while an itemset is changed, however, that current attack is aborted.)

Check out the full article at the link below.

The Broken Hourglass: The Quantum Mechanics Of Inventory
The Broken Hourglass

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