Over Christmas I worked on idea of a realistic game (in terms of gameplay), using titles such as Wurm Online, Ark: Survial Evolved and Don’t Starve as templates to build on. These games are excellent games and enjoy a strong following yet rarely do the mechanics in the game have a strong grounding in reality. Most focus on creating a fun and engaging gameplay system that modifies reality to suit that need, though I digress this is a topic of a whole other post.
I started to toy with the idea of holding only what you can carry ie. one thing in each hand, an item “holstered” on each belt side and a bag on the back. This then allows for the interesting mechanic of swapping tools in hand with the other hand and the holster, all very interesting and much more realistic than a set of quick slots across the bottom of the screen.
Moving on to a more realistic inventory system than a UI window or quick slots. I toyed with Unity’s World Space Canvas and made it so that you only have an inventory if you have a bag equipped. This also means you can only look in your inventory if you have a free hand to hold the bag, the code would simply check for an empty hand and move the bag to the hand, this allowed the inventory to be looked at and altered.
I then tried out the idea of gathering and collecting resources in a more realistic manner, instead of grabbing items and them appearing in your inventory magically. In my system the bag must be in hand and the other must be free to be able to grab object in the world.
Overall this seems to work quite well, but obviously is a long way off a clean and finished product. The concern now is, does all this swapping of hands and rigidity of mechanics cause the flow of the game to be disrupted or do the systems themselves become part of the fun, having to think about what your carrying and where it is on your person.
Only time and testing will tell, I hope this will be an interesting project to continue in spare time and look forward to showing it off more.