See what Retroman has to say about this topic.

Posted by glokz 4 years ago

Hello everyone,

This post is dedicated straight to the dev team, but I encourage everyone to share their personal feelings, they might be different than mines .

So idea behind this, was born somewhen in July 2017, when I first started playing the game. When I had to learn what items have what skills it was not possible. There were no guides. It was totally opposite experience to League of Legends (and I started playing that on official release as well). I remember that back then when I asked my more experienced colleagues why the descriptions suck, they explained me - devs don't know themselves how this works. And since I am also in software business and I could see databases without descriptions, well It was satisfying explanation to me. But since we have a new UI/UX guy in the team and I have little bit more faith in the dev teams than 1.5 year ago, I decided to raise this topic.

Let's take Knight helmet and Soulscythe descriptions to understand the problem.

I am using This doc for this post's purpose, It doesn't really matter if it's up to date or not.

Knight helmet:

Displacement Immunity
Increases Crowd Control Resistance by 76, and makes targets immune to any displacement effects like pulls, knockbacks or fears for 10s. The spell affects you and up to 5 allies in close proximity.


Creates a tornado and shoots it in a chosen direction. Enemies hit by the tornado will receive 488 damage and pulled into the air for 2s (ignoring Crowd Control resistance and duration). When enemies are in proximity to the tornado, they will be slowed by 80%.

So let me list why this description sucks, why new players have so hard time to understand how the weapon works and why the best way is just to test it in the game, which is IMO very poor UX.

1. Descriptions in the game are not unified.

Number of unique effects is too large for which reason it's not possible to provide accurate description within few words, in other words - good description.

Example: pulled into the air for 2s, which in reality is just an unique 'Knockback' effect.
Solution: unify descriptions, create comprehensive list of "nouns" and "adjectives" to describe all the effects in the game the very same way.
Example after implementing solution: "and applies irresistible knockback for 2s".
Comment: New players are not really interested how the skill look like, they just want pure facts which mechanic counters which.The same would go for knight helmet, we could distinct nouns like buff and add some prefixes/adjectives like self-, de-, AoE.

2. Unique types of resistances/damage numbers are not clearly defined.

Example: Enemies hit by the tornado will receive 488 damage.
Solution: Apply a color to the resistance (MR/armor) and damages to respective type.
Example after implementing solution: Enemies hit by the tornado will receive 488 damage.
Comment: Red would mean physical damage which can be countered with armor(e.g. yellow color), and blue would be for magic dmg type and MR could be purple or whatever. Until today I have no idea which weapons and which skills deal which type of damage, it's not because I don't care, but because this information is not simple to obtain.

3. Not enough math. Too much generalities.

Example: The spell affects you and up to 5 allies in close proximity.
Solution: Just replace close proximity with radius(could be cone/whatever shape but still respective to AD.1.) and X which would be integer of meters known from other descriptions (like knockbacks?)
Example after implementing solution: The spell affects you and up to 5 allies in a radius of 5m.
Comment: Guessing. Nobody knows, it's not that important but makes the UX very poor, especially for those build freaks or "math+" geeks.

4. Mouse-over-text details.

Example. displacement effects like pulls, knockbacks or fears for 10s
Solution: when you aim your mouse over pull/knockback/fear - you will see what it is.
Example: Knockback - Displacement effect during which spell-target can't control it's character.
Comment: Yeah, this is bad explanation of knock back effect I know, but it's just the idea how to make new players learn the game much faster. I know that players who play since release don't understand mechanics until today. because they never bothered to test it themselves or haven't had anyone to explain them.

5. Math+ descriptions.

I have no idea how the damage scales up in Albion, but let's imagine we have flat ratios of Character stats into damage that spell does. This would be an optional improvement.

Example: Soulscythe deals 488 damage. We don't know at which tier, with what stats. When I read it in my tree it's scaled up with the weapon IP (Tier 4 vs Tier 8 differs).
Solution:If it's flat multiplier, just provide it in the bracket.
Example after implementing solution: Soulscythe deals 488 damage (0.45*IP). So with 1k~ IP we have 488dmg. If you have 250 masteries bonus, it's simple 488+250*0.45=600dmg. Comment: This might be implemented as mouse-over text functionality. Which means this info would be only available in the skill tree and not in the inventory, eventually in the wiki. This way we could decide which tier to wear before we buy an item.

So if I was creating the description final version would look like below:

Creates a tornado and shoots it in a chosen direction. All enemies hit by the tornado will receive 488 damage(mouse over text dmg multiplier) and be applied with irresistible(mouse-over-text description) knockback(mouse-over-text description) for 2s. All enemies in 5m radius to the tornado, will be slowed(mouse-over-text description) by 80%.

Please share your opinion what do you think, what else would you expect or share your own experience whether you like current descriptions or not.


Posted by Retroman 4 years ago (Source)

Thanks everyone for your feedback,

We know, we have to imrpove our tooltips and we have already been discussing how we best do this in the long run. However we are indeed a rather small team, and have been focusing our attention on other aspects of the game so far. We'll see how we can improve them for the next content update a bit and try to keep an eye on improving them in future updates.

Meanwhile in the short term: If you encounter tool tips with missing information, like the area of effect radius size is missing (the knight helmet example): These are considered as a bug. If you post these in the bugs section or here, we can add the missing values to these tooltips in upcoming patches.

Fun Fact:
Most numbers in the tooltips are referenced values, which update if the spell values are changed. However this can lead to bugs, when the spell core logic has been adjusted and the referenced value is now somewhere else or if certain attributes (like the number of Celestial Sphere jumps) wasn't a referenced value but just a written number. :)


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