Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slots


Although the central place for this kind of discussion is on the CDO wiki, some may find it helpful to discuss potential requests and suggestions here first.

Shoals Surfer

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 09:33

Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slots

I don't know if this is technically feasible, but I think the idea of 26 more inventory slots would be awesome.

I'm constantly having to inventory manage, especially with projectiles and evokables.. This would solve that problem :D


so to drop one of the extra 26 items, you type d ctrl-b (for example) instead of d shift-b

The <ctrl> a-z can display as *a - *z or something in the inventory listing.
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Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 09:34

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

skyspire wrote:I don't know if this is technically feasible, but I think the idea of 26 more inventory slots would be awesome.

I'm constantly having to inventory manage, especially with projectiles and evokables.. This would solve that problem :D


so to drop one of the extra 26 items, you type d ctrl-b (for example) instead of d shift-b

The <ctrl> a-z can display as *a - *z or something in the inventory listing.


Or you could just learn to manage the inventory. "d" helps a lot :)

Shoals Surfer

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 09:43

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

if you read my post, onton, you would see that I am fully aware of "d". Having to constantly inventory manage is annoying at times. Having an extra 26 slots would mean less trips to the stash to drop stuff. With high evocation skill, many wands and items are useful until the end game, for example.. I just don't like choosing between branded projectiles and wands/potions/scrolls/other evokables/rings/amulets.. sometimes its useful to switch amulets and rings situationally.

Not to mention the different kinds of food found on the dungeon floor. At full inventory, later in the game i usually just eat the floor fruit instead of having it take up valuable inventory space. It would be nice not to be forced to run to your stash so often.

Some games I will find multiple lamps of fire / phial of flood / fan of gales / stone of tremors.. The other week (on my 10 rune win) I had a game where I had about 10 of these evokables.. And when you have them in quantity they can be very helpful with high evoc skill.

If I have high throwing and high bows, it would be great to have branded javelins as well as branded arrows.. right now it is just not possible because of limited inventory space.. unless you drop lots of wands and such to make room.
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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 10:08

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

I'm definitely inclined to agree that inventory management is way more of a chore than an interesting gameplay decision at the moment. The only time I ever feel like limited inventory slots is really forcing me to make decisions and sacrifices in terms of what I carry is with evokeables. We already have item destruction to discourage carrying every potion or scroll we ever find, and most jewelry seems to either be essential or completely unnecessary for any given branch - it seems rare that you have to carefully decide which pieces of jewelry are worth the inventory slots. And hunger management is enough of a chore already without having to deal with careful permafood selection so half your inventory isn't taken up by 10 different types of berries.

So personally, I'm all for an increase to inventory size, both weight and slots. Frankly, I'm not even sure what the gameplay benefit of having your inventory weight scale with strength is anyway. Being a Deep Elf Conjurer and having to stash all your spellbooks and meat rations in the Temple because you can't even get to the lair without hitting the weight limit is just annoying.

If some other, less annoying mechanic could be found to discourage lugging around too many wands at a time (preferably not by making them volatile), I'd honestly see removing item weight and adding 26 more item slots as an almost strictly positive change. I don't think it would make the game much easier, but it would make it a lot less tedious. And even without something to limit the wands you carry I might still be in favor of it. I feel like the times the inventory limits force me to make interesting decisions are vastly outnumbered by the times they just add a lot of tedium to the game.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 10:30

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

skyspire wrote:Having to constantly inventory manage is annoying at times.

Yes, that's why you should try to carry less junk instead of asking to be able to carry more. Searching through 78 items when you want to use something would be way more annoying IMO.

At full inventory, later in the game i usually just eat the floor fruit instead of having it take up valuable inventory space.

What's wrong with that? If the food is not worth carrying, just eat it or leave it there. I don't see how being able to carry it would be an improvement.

Some games I will find multiple lamps of fire / phial of flood / fan of gales / stone of tremors.. The other week (on my 10 rune win) I had a game where I had about 10 of these evokables.. And when you have them in quantity they can be very helpful with high evoc skill.

What's the point in carrying 10? Only one per type recharge at a time anyway.

If I have high throwing and high bows, it would be great to have branded javelins as well as branded arrows.. right now it is just not possible because of limited inventory space.. unless you drop lots of wands and such to make room.

And what's the point of training both throwing and bows? Pay attention to what you actually use. When you hit the item limit, look through your inventory and drop all the stuff you're carrying "just in case" but you'll actually never use anyway.
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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 10:58

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

galehar wrote:Counterarguments


These all feel like reasons a larger inventory isn't necessary, not reasons why adding it would be bad. Yes, you can get by with a 52-item inventory most of the time, but that doesn't mean expanding it wouldn't help. You're saying to stop carrying around contingency items that you never use, but, well, sometimes I have a contingency item that I might need in theory but just never have to run into a situation where I need it. And perhaps more importantly, if I don't carry around any of the more niche contingency items because I only have space for the more general-purpose ones, then it effectively renders a lot of them useless. Potions of Lignification are a cool concept that have some applications, but considering how situational they are I don't necessarily want to lug them around with me taking up an inventory slot that could be used on something more general-purpose, or just for storing an extra stack of permafood.

I think for me, what it comes down to is that there are a number of situations in which a limited inventory adds tedium to the game. The best example I can come up with is non-volatile strategic items like spellbooks. Carrying your spellbooks with you is convenient, because it means you can memorize new spells as you get the skill/spell levels for them without having to run all the way back to your stash. On the other hand, because of the limited inventory, carrying your spellbooks with you is often strategically unwise, since you could use that inventory space to carry tactical items or permafood that you're more likely to need while traveling, while there will rarely be a situation where you need access to a spellbook but can't just go back to your stash. So the result is that, every time you want to memorize a new spell, you have to run back to your stash. This is annoying, inconvenient, and adds nothing compelling to the gameplay whatsoever, as far as I'm concerned.

Overall, I feel like the mechanics of inventory space are kind of arbitrary and not always designed around compelling gameplay. At the very least, I can't think of any good gameplay reason strategic items should take up inventory space, in terms of slots or weight. There was already a recent discussion about item distruction where a lot of people seemed to agree that strategic potions and scrolls should be indestructable, because their volatility creates no interesting gameplay and only adds extra trips to the stash. I think having strategic items take up inventory space is the same.

As far as I know, the only gameplay purpose limited inventory space serves is to limit your tactical options. It stops you from carrying around every piece of permafood, every wand, blowgun dart, ammo brand, potion, scroll, etc. you find, "just in case". Instead, you have to pick which options you'll have available. But right now, I think it's limiting in ways that don't serve this purpose. Partly because strategic items take up inventory space, forcing you to keep a stash, partly because we already have item destruction imposing this limit on scrolls and potions, and partly because, in many cases, 52 items is enough to hold enough tactical items that it isn't really that limiting most of the time and just stops you from having extremely niche items available when you encounter the rare situation where they actually are exactly what you need.

Tartarus Sorceror

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 11:30

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

Quazifuji wrote:These all feel like reasons a larger inventory isn't necessary, not reasons why adding it would be bad.


Why would anyone bother making such a sweeping change to the inventory system, when there's no compelling reason to, and almost all of the problems with the current system can be boiled down to "but what if I need that wand of magic darts in Zot?"
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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 11:50

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

galehar wrote:What's the point in carrying 10? Only one per type recharge at a time anyway.

The recharge rate doesn't matter. What does matter is that you can unload 10 evokers at once and win pretty much any battle. I carry as much as possible.

I don't have a problem with the 52 item limit, but I do think it should be seriously considered before any new beneficial items are added. I'm looking at you, scroll of immolation and potion of lignification.
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Mines Malingerer

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 11:57

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

When I play Crawl as a spellcaster, I often balance a tight inventory (and different people balance them in different ways, I'm sure) by taking 1 or at most 2 offensive wands for zero-MP emergencies. I have to choose between lightning, draining, cold, or fire based on what type of enemies I think I could need to kill to escape from in a bad spot.

If I had 26 more slots, I would never have to think about that long-term choice. I would take all of those wands, only have to look at the weaknesses of the monster in front of me, and always use the wand with accuracy & damage that would result in the highest probability of killing the monster.

I think Crawl emphasizes making long-term choices--which is why we have some level of inventory management, skill training that isn't freely redistributable, and spells that aren't trivial to unlearn. Probably 5 more slots wouldn't make a real difference, but I think that a whole 26 more slots would let players carry anything they could really use, and lessen the strategic challenge of trying to adapt their current inventory to the situation and use consumes to escape if necessary.

Adding more slots isn't a feature that I have seen requested much if at all, and I suspect that's because 52 slots is a number within whatever range doesn't overly cripple the player but forces strategic choices. Other aspects of inventory management have made me personally think "this is not interesting", but I've never once felt that way about the 52 slot limit. Crawl isn't a game that you can play like an Elder Scrolls title.
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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 13:51

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

I'll flatly state that this won't happen. A larger inventory makes the interface *more* cumbersome, not less. For example, you have to page through more inventory screens in console, or look at more item rows in tiles -- in either case the screen is busier. Having to introduce another meta-key for accessing more items is very inelegant, too (help screen, different terminals, mispresses).

Worst, we would trade in a slightly worse interface for no gameplay gain! Suppose for a moment that the inventory was complety free: an unlimited number of slots, and no item weights either. Would you carry every little thing? I bet many of us would. Will it lead to a better game experience? Of course not! Obviously, being able to carry everything is a little advantage but that brings me to my final point: restrictions lead to choices. Here it's plain to see: you only have 52 item slots, and that's why you sometimes have to think about what to leave behind. That's not the most major of choices Crawl has to offer but it's much, much better than allowing containers, or more items.

For a comparison: Brogue (which is much smaller in scope) sets the limit at 26 items, and two potions of life actually count at two. This makes for very painful decisions, all the time. Crawl is probably too big for a 26 item limit, but there is no reason to deviate from the established 52 limit. It is time-honoured and serves several purposes.

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Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 14:01

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

Also, many items would be inaccessible because the OS catches some ctrl+letter and send a signal to process (ctrl+c for example).
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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 14:19

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

For me currently the item limit is exactly in the "annoying to drop things but never cause serious choices" range. Maybe 26 would be too few, but lessening the number of items (along with removing other, even more annoying limits like weight) may make it better.

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 14:28

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

sanka: I am not sure that Crawl can enforce very serious inventory decisions. After all, you can always go back and pick up what you wanted. (This makes the areas special where you cannot do this: portal vaults, the Abyss, Pan.) In Brogue, you cannot backtrack much because the foodclock bites your head off. I don't think this is feasible for Crawl.

Crypt Cleanser

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 15:24

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

Thinking more on it, I guess you are right. Crawl is also full of items than occasionally can be useful, but nobody would trade them for potions of speed etc. Tight inventory would mean much less use of some interesting items.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 15:50

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

Why not have categories instead?

If I press "I" I would see:

r)ecent pickups
h)eaviest
w)eapons
a)rmor
s)crolls
p)otions
j)ewelry
...etc.

which would give me 52 of each item type, and a quicker way to get to lists that I want. At the worst, could make this togglable by config setting.

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 16:17

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

Noisewar: it is still another layer of organization (or, if you want, another key to be pressed when you want o access an item). I honestly see no benefit to extending the inventory -- if at all, I'd follow sanka and reduce it (but again, it's not worth the trouble and the outcry).

Tomb Titivator

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 17:08

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

I think there are still interesting choices in which items to drop, though maybe I'm simply reflecting my own neuroticism moreso than actual tough decisions. Unfortunately I end up dropping interesting items(like evocables, which I use rarely because I forget) rather than carrying them and having to do more item dropping/stashing when I find strategic items. It'd be cool if identified strategic items became like, charges for (a)bilities instead of staying in one's inventory, though I'd prefer if it were in a way such that you could still waste them in the id game.(Drink an id'd one, it becomes a charge. Drink an unid'd one with no clue what it does, it gets used immediately. Drink an unid'd one that you know precisely what it is by process of elimination/statistics...? Weird case, not sure what the right answer is.) I think that + a lower max item cap would be a cool change if you resolved the ID game changes.
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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 18:06

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

My major concern with inventory management is that equipped items take up quite a significant chunk of what's supposed to be in your *backpack*. Assuming you're fully kitted out, that's weapon, shield, hat, torso, gloves, boots, 2 rings, and amulet: nine inventory slots.

If we were to go to 26 inventory slots, your equipment would take up a full third of your inventory space. Seventeen inventory slots disappears really quickly -- especially for noncasters who have to shore up deficiencies with a multitude of consumables/evokables.

Given that route (which I realize has already been determined as very unlikely to happen) I think a compromise of some sort would be good - 26 inventory slots a - z, and A through I for equipped items. This would make a very clear division between what you're carrying in your "backpack" and what you're actually wearing/using at the moment, while leaving a reasonable amount of space for playing the inventory minigame.

edit: 17, not 15. whoops.

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 18:47

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

dpeg wrote:sanka: I am not sure that Crawl can enforce very serious inventory decisions. After all, you can always go back and pick up what you wanted.

If the limits aren't making interesting choices, then all they are doing is making players choose between survival and fun.

CTRL-f does two things, and two things well: it lets you find a specific item you remember seeing but left on the floor, and it lets you find whether or not you encountered interesting items that you weren't paying attention to at the time (e.g. "runed elven scale mail").

CTRL-f plus the floor, however, is an absolutely terrible approach to item management. Actually collecting items together lets me do lots of things conveniently. I can bring up a list of all the spells I have access to. I can view with a single glance my reserve of important items. I can easily view my list of potentially interesting unidentified items to decide if and how to continue playing the identification mini-game. I'll actually remember I found an odd unrandart a long time back when I get to a point in time when I might actually want to start using it -- otherwise I might not have even thought to search for it. I don't have to go retracing through the entire dungeon when I finally discover that red potions are potions of speed. I can even easily organize items in any arbitrary way that strikes my fancy.

(This makes the areas special where you cannot do this: portal vaults, the Abyss, Pan.) In Brogue, you cannot backtrack much because the foodclock bites your head off. I don't think this is feasible for Crawl.

It's easy to make flavor to keep them special; e.g. your extra-dimensional storage space doesn't function properly when you're off on alternate planes of existence like Abyss or Pan, and so you are cut off from your extended inventory. (I don't think portal vaults are actually relevant to this, although I haven't seen most of the wizlabs) I am still quite skeptical that it would actually make for interesting choices, though.
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Barkeep

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Post Tuesday, 10th December 2013, 18:52

Re: Proposal: <ctrl>a-z for an additional 26 inventory slot

The proposal has gotten a pretty clear "No" from dpeg and galehar; I'm gonna close this before it continues its devolution into a catchall inventory thread.

Other inventory conversations can go in their own homes.
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