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Quick Select menu for previously fought against enemies

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(credit: from this thread)

 

You could re-use the morale or health bars. Magic costs health to use, or costs morale, or both. Otherwise, I lean more towards 1 and 2. As others have said, Mana leads to just using the most optimal ability over and over, and I'm not a fan of vancian magic, it's a pain to choose spells all the time, and also requires a lot of foresight, and spells that tend to be very specific tend to not get used. (Repel insects for example, may get tossed out and never chosen because a generic firebolt spell is handier in 80% of situations)


 

This sparked an idea.

 

A number of RPGs have a skill called 'Analyze' or something similar. But if that skill could be used to set up a QuickSelect menu for spells. So imagine your party in a fight against:

  • 2 zombies
  • a bat
  • a floating eyeball
  • a black knight
  • a griffon

 

Now your party has fought all of these enemies before and they have used 'Analyze' on these enemies as well. So your party --in theory-- knows the strengths and weaknesses of each enemy. So now because of this, a 'Quick Select' menu appears. There are 9 slots which can be either for categories of spells or individual spells themselves. For the category of spells, each category will list the spells most effective in killing the enemy. Each spell will have an (small) icon showing which enemy the spell is effective against. The 10th slot will have a spell that either is the most used or was previously selected as a 'favorite'.

 

Of course, you can choose to have this menu enabled or disabled on the fly.

 

So has this mechanic been done already for RPGs? And what do you think about it?

 

 

**(Yes, it could be used for weapons and buffs, but I'm concentrating on spells)

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Hmm... the main problem that I see is that the best spell in a given situation isn't necessarily the one that's most effective on a given foe--there may be tactical considerations that override the individual weaknesses of each foe. For example, if two or your opponents have the ability to inflict a crippling status effect, then it might be wiser to use an area-of-effect stunning spell on them, even if their resistances reduces its effectiveness on them to merely moderate.

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And what do you think about it?
I think it's cool. Considering those enemies would keep popping over for example when back-tracking to already explored areas I'd say that would be very convenient.

 

Back when I was playing pen-and-paper RPGs with friends there was a whole class dedicated to providing 'knowledge benefits' but they were pretty much different in nature: bonus on hit, magic resist or... perhaps armor?

 

Note those were pretty much orthogonal to the tactical issues noted above. 

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What about going one step further, and making your options chained to knowledge? Only after your character has learned that trolls are highly flammable does "use torch" become an option. Spells could be tied to knowing the true name of a creature: Until you learn it, you're left with weaker, generic magic.

 

The downside is that this reduces player agency: Once you discover trolls are flammable, you just go around setting them on fire.

 

The upside is you could have a lot of fun with the animations.

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Hmm... the main problem that I see is that the best spell in a given situation isn't necessarily the one that's most effective on a given foe--there may be tactical considerations that override the individual weaknesses of each foe. For example, if two or your opponents have the ability to inflict a crippling status effect, then it might be wiser to use an area-of-effect stunning spell on them, even if their resistances reduces its effectiveness on them to merely moderate.

 

True.

 

However, the menu is intended as a list of suggestions, not a list of available options. And when the menu is in 'Category Mode' each category will have an arbitrary number of spells determined to be effective. However, when the menu is in 'Spell Mode', only one spell that is determined to be 'most effective' will be shown.

 


What about going one step further, and making your options chained to knowledge? Only after your character has learned that trolls are highly flammable does "use torch" become an option.

 

Interesting. Though, personally, I would make that an option to learn a new skill or spell separate from normally acquired spells.

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True.



However, the menu is intended as a list of suggestions, not a list of available options. And when the menu is in 'Category Mode' each category will have an arbitrary number of spells determined to be effective. However, when the menu is in 'Spell Mode', only one spell that is determined to be 'most effective' will be shown.

Hmm... Fair enough, I suppose.

 

I suppose that I can see some use to it, primarily for cases in which I do want to single out a specific enemy, especially if resistances or elemental rock-paper-scissors are in play. I do think that it's something that I'd want to be able to hide, however.

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