We’re taking a look at how we handle notifications during asynchronous play to make them as timely as possible without becoming annoying,
On these lines, an alternate to the party leader setting the dead-head turn pace would be a reminder button. If all the party members except one click it, that one misses their turn (or has it handed to the leader).
It seems to me as if the "take minor action" and "take major action" button phases can be removed entirely with no loss to gameplay. Just have "choose a minor action" above the list of actions (as it already is), without having an unnecessary click to get there.
And if they are standing on the edge of a cliff, it should be a kill.
@Earl - what it solves is being able to talk to party members as your character e.g. "I think they're bluffing" or "Help! I'm surrounded!" or to other players as yourself e.g. "go for hob #2" or "nice graphics on the tree."
The OP didn't suggest two chat windows, but rather "a toggle button - that would put the text in italics with your user name at the front, rather than your character name." This takes no extra screen space and is not confusing (it works well in other game platforms like Fantasy Grounds).
Rather than a toggle, I'd suggest 2 buttons, e.g. "send" and "OOC".
@ Jeff & BG, you can also go to the dropdown menu under "Display" (to the right of the quest name) and check "Show coordinates."
You know when you're in range for an attack when it shows up as an option in your actions box (it only shows the abilities that can be used).
The ability and attack descriptions already contain range information, visible when you click on the ability name on your character.
In Beta, there's a lot of party hopping because of the fact that, as Sandman said, players play at different paces, or aren't all available at the same time. EIther an impatient player drops out of a slow party to find another, or an impatient leader kicks the slow player.
Neither of these is very satisfactory from a role-playing perspective, as long-term parties don't grow and learn together, and they result in players having a mixed bag of encounters without following whole quests from beginning to end.
Although being able to play one turn when no-one from your party is around is a nice feature, the game is painfully slow if that's the only way it's played. It works best when your whole party is online at the same time. However, as Sandman pointed out, there's often 3 out of 4, which means no-one can do anything.
It would be good if there were a way to sign in, see who was online and then be able to decide to take a quest with whoever was there. The missing player(s) could see, upon sign-in that their regular party had done a particular quest without them and have the option of doing it themself/selves immediately or at a later date, without leaving the party they are affiliated with.
Sandman's suggestion of allowing your character to be controlled by the leader, (or could be automated, only fast) would also work, with the downside that that player would then miss out on that quest.
Conflicts during action-taking no longer require an extra click to acknowledge the conflict, which should make them less annoying. Action-taking still requires a click to begin so that you can see the details of what just happened, but we’re considering whether we should streamline this further.
The other issue with slow turns is that the "Take minor Action" and "Take Major Action" buttons seem unnecessary. Since each of those is the only thing you can do at the time, those extra stages should be skipped and you should just go straight to the selection of actions.
It’s very likely we will make a change along these lines. There are some complications to work out, most importantly how to make sure parties don’t get auto-advanced through many rounds while players are asleep (without forcing them to constantly remember to change their time limit before bedtime). We have some ideas here, but also encourage you to post your own solutions.