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Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition)» Forums » General

Subject: Anybody interested in an iPad app for Descent? rss

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Steve McCormick
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Does anybody have any interest in an iPad app for Descent that could, say, be used as a die roller, Quest tracker, etc.?

If so, what would you like to see in it?

My brother-in-law programs iPad/iPhone apps and will gladly make one when I send him the designs

The intention is that this will be a FREE app.
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Raphael Pigulla
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Personally, I loathe die rollers. But a campaign-tracker would be wonderful as well as a "show me all monsters that match these traits" feature.

But please, for the love of god and all that is holy, have an actual designer look your app over. There are already so many apps that are, at their core, pretty useful but are just too painful to use and look at.
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Steve McCormick
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That's where you guys could come in useful, as you can actually test the thing

I must say, die-rollers aren't my thing but I imagine the app with a tabbed interface, so ignore it if you like, use it as you wish.

The monster trait thing is a great idea!
 
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Rafal Areinu
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No, no. Testing is one thing, designing is another. You won't get nice effects only by taking in feedback.
 
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Steve McCormick
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Areinu wrote:
No, no. Testing is one thing, designing is another. You won't get nice effects only by taking in feedback.


With all due respect, you have no idea of my or my brother-in-law's design skills! And, as a free app, who can afford to bring in a designer?
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Raphael Pigulla
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imalrightjack wrote:
With all due respect, you have no idea of my or my brother-in-law's design skills!

True, but please don't take this personally. More often than not, programmers are neither designers nor usability experts, and I say that as a programmer myself.
Your brother-in-law might very well be the exception, but - statistically speaking - that is not particularly likely.

imalrightjack wrote:
And, as a free app, who can afford to bring in a designer?

Maybe you can find a Descent-fan who also happens to be a designer or usability geek, it's worth a shot.
 
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Steve McCormick
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Well, if anybody is reading this and has a good eye for design/usability, then get in touch!

Let's face it, it's worth a go - and, with feedback from the community, it could be great. Download it, try it - if it's rubbish then say why
 
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Raphael Pigulla
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imalrightjack wrote:
Well, if anybody is reading this and has a good eye for design/usability, then get in touch!

I'd be more than happy to do some beta-testing for you.

imalrightjack wrote:
Let's face it, it's worth a go - and, with feedback from the community, it could be great. Download it, try it - if it's rubbish then say why

See, that's exactly why (in an ideal world where money is no problem)you would absolutely need to hire usability experts. Recognizing that something is broken in terms of usability is one thing. Actually knowing how to do it better, is an entirely different beast.
 
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Steve McCormick
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I'm honestly totally confident in how I want to see it work - and believe others will like it too.

We'll see! And I'll come back when it hits Beta, if it ever does!
 
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Rafal Areinu
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And sometimes things might be so fundamentally broken that if you recognize usability problems at the testing stage it will be cheaper(in this case time-wise) to just redo whole thing... It's very important to design the app with UI and usability in mind before you even start to code.

Your brother-in-law might be an expert, and if he is then it's better for us all. But your initial comments suggested "the design will just come out somehow".
 
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Steve McCormick
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Yes, indeed, I will be designing it 100% with usability and UI in mind. I want him to design it specifically so I can use it and I hate cheap and nasty apps. I used to do tech design for a web design publisher and have spent a lot of time working on processes, desk instructions, etc. so I have a good idea of what works and what doesn't. I've also done quite a lot of web design and some study on design principles.

Soooooo...rather than assassinating the idea, what do you want to see in it?
 
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Rafal Areinu
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For 2nd edition I don't really lack anything during play. If you were doing 1st edition I would love an app that could use camera input, when faced on the board, to show heroes LOS based on things on board. You know, augumented reality LOS display. Same thing could be done for monsters.

In 2nd edition LOS is much simpler(except for few situations that get constantly talked about on this forum) so it would be waste of resources.
 
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Dan Poe
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Yes, do it, I'm excited for you.


It's a free ap guys, lay off.surprise
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Steve McCormick
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dbpoe wrote:
Yes, do it, I'm excited for you.


It's a free ap guys, lay off.surprise


Cheers!
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Raphael Pigulla
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Actually, I forgot the most important, absolutely must-have feature your iPad app positively needs to have: A TIMER. My heroes are always taking for-effin-ever to finish their goddamn move! ;-)
 
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Steve McCormick
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n3rd wrote:
Actually, I forgot the most important, absolutely must-have feature your iPad app positively needs to have: A TIMER. My heroes are always taking for-effin-ever to finish their goddamn move! ;-)


Seriously? Seems a decent idea to me but I've, gladly, not yet had that problem.
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Rafal Areinu
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I think it could work like chess clock, where both sides have, say 1h to think and obvious moves they could do within few minutes, while taking more time for more important turns.

Free or not, if it would wind up so bad no one would use it then it would be like no app. Now we know we're standing on something that has hope of success.
 
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David Munch
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n3rd wrote:
Personally, I loathe die rollers.

Same! If you are too lazy to roll a die, well, don't play board games!
n3rd wrote:
But please, for the love of god and all that is holy, have an actual designer look your app over. There are already so many apps that are, at their core, pretty useful but are just too painful to use and look at.

And this... Oh please this.. My eyes hurt sometimes when you look at free apps..
imalrightjack wrote:
And, as a free app, who can afford to bring in a designer?

Really doesn't matter. If your app is all about functionality, you can get a quite beautiful looking app, if you just following Apples design guidelines, and the assets that exist in Xcode. Some programmers think that they are exceptional at making custom assets, and well.. No. Just no. Don't ever make custom assets unless you *really* know what you are doing.

Personally i think a list of all rules in the rulebook, that can be condenses to one word, would be nice to have. Ie. "what exactly was it this monster skill does?" or "What did I have to do when rolling an attack?", or something like "Am I allowed to do this during a dodge? I'll just look up the dodge rules.."

And a map overview for the OL, with information for each map. (This could be a rights issue though, unless you make them simple or get someone to redraw them). Prehaps with spoken sentences of the information given to the players - That would actually be worth a couple of $$$ if done properly.

A list of heroes with their skills.

Some sort of input form where you can write up heroes with skills/upgrades/items, for campaigns.

Oh, and a secret button that displays "You've played enough, go out into the sunshine you board game geek!"
 
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Thain Esh Kelch wrote:

Prehaps with spoken sentences of the information given to the players - That would actually be worth a couple of $$$ if done properly.


I'd already been discussing this with a friend at the weekend. As musician with a home studio, I'd really like to do some introductory speech bits to allow the Overlord to just play it and get on with the game. It could certainly integrate into the app. Just need a voice actor, because mine would sound ridiculous! I wish I could get Wayne June to do it
 
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Raphael Pigulla
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Areinu wrote:
I think it could work like chess clock, where both sides have, say 1h to think and obvious moves they could do within few minutes, while taking more time for more important turns.

Actually, what would be wicked awesome is this: hook up your iPad to your stereo and the app plays some thematic music. As time passes, the music becomes more and more dramatic and finally climaxes in an infernal crescendo as the heroes frantically try to finish their turn. Then, as the timer finally reaches zero and the music slowly fades away, they drop back into their chairs and wait for the Overlord to foil the carefully crafted plans.

I guess I got a little carried away there. But a guy can dream.
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Raphael Pigulla
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imalrightjack wrote:
Just need a voice actor, because mine would sound ridiculous! I wish I could get Wayne June to do it :)

*cough*Kickstarter?*cough* :-)
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n3rd wrote:
imalrightjack wrote:
Just need a voice actor, because mine would sound ridiculous! I wish I could get Wayne June to do it

*cough*Kickstarter?*cough* :-)


Hehe, good idea! If only I had any faith in it making any money!
 
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Raphael Pigulla
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imalrightjack wrote:
n3rd wrote:
imalrightjack wrote:
Just need a voice actor, because mine would sound ridiculous! I wish I could get Wayne June to do it

*cough*Kickstarter?*cough* :-)


Hehe, good idea! If only I had any faith in it making any money!

Glancing over the Kickstarter guidelines, I don't see anything that would require you to turn this into a commercially successful (or even viable) product. Basically what you do is say "give me X money and I will do Y". So as soon as you can show off some sort of prototype on your iPad, you should be ready to get this baby Kickstarter'ed.
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Steve McCormick
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For fun, I just recorded this - it's ridiculous and made me laugh but the it might just work with the right care and attention (and voice).

http://www.nsnr-music.co.uk/firstblood.mp3

Just rememeber, this isn't serious!
 
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David Munch
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imalrightjack wrote:
Thain Esh Kelch wrote:

Prehaps with spoken sentences of the information given to the players - That would actually be worth a couple of $$$ if done properly.


I'd already been discussing this with a friend at the weekend. As musician with a home studio, I'd really like to do some introductory speech bits to allow the Overlord to just play it and get on with the game. It could certainly integrate into the app. Just need a voice actor, because mine would sound ridiculous! I wish I could get Wayne June to do it

You just have to start with "In a world..." and everything will go smooth from there..
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