NPCs gets really full

jodie
jodie
edited March 3 in Feature Requests

This isn't an actual proper feature request because I don't have a really clean idea of how to solve it. But my instinct is to add ALL NPCs my characters come across. But then the character section gets really full. I've painstakingly retired characters to a wiki page before to try and deal with it in a long running campaign.

Maybe a custom tabs option to filter them; even allowing me to default hide certain tabs. Like the characters who are under the Dead/Inactive/Retired tab/filter get autohidden. Then I could tab by region, or criminal syndicate.

Or an option to mark a character inactive so it doesn't appear unless a little link at the bottom is clicked (?includeInactive=true or something?).

Or the ability to add a css class to the wrapper element of a character so I can use the custom css stuff to do it. Just a wee input box at the bottom of the character.

Post edited by jodie on
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Comments

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    Thanks for the requests!

    I think your instinct to add all NPCs is a good one.  You never know when you're going to want to bring one back in for an encore.

    To my mind, what we really need is a template of some kind that enables easy creating Character groupings in WikiPages.

    The Characters page itself is supposed to be an "index", like in the back of the book, where you can look up any Character by name.  Adding grouping/hiding would hinder that ability and make the page more complex to use.  The current Characters page is so close to what people want a grouping of Characters to look like that it's tempting to just push it to do just a little more.  But I think ultimately that's too much for that page to do.

    I think if we had a template that had an easy way to present the Characters in the same "card layout" type format, then that would meet all of the requests like this and open up new creativity as well.

    Until we can get something like that done though, you can do it manually ... so instead of moving "retired" Characters off, just keep only the "active" Characters on your WikiPage.  And if you build your own WikiPage with active Characters, you can replace the current Characters link in your Navigation with the Custom Navigation feature.  And then just put a link to the original "index" Characters page at the bottom of the the "active" Characters WikiPage.

     

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    There's no easy way to pull in pictures and short description though right? It's going to be a list of names unless I manually embed pictures and whatnot?

    That is a very cool workaround though.

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    I'm also not using tags to their Full Power. I think if I tag better it will be much more managable. Like tagging by 'active' and 'retired' would let me filter really easily. Thank you ^_^

  • ragnarhawk
    Posts: 121

    I don't think that it would allow pulling short descriptions.  Regarding pulling in pictures, however, I think that the page could have css that used the "avatar-hover" class to show the picture with the name (even when not hovering).

    I also think that backlinks (what links here) could be a powerful tool for this sort of situation, if that feature were implemented.  While editing the character, add a link to the Categories page, and it should backlink in automagically onto that page.

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    ooooh smart thank you @ragnarhawk !

  • Frak_Lou_Elmo
    Frak_Lou_Elmo
    Posts: 117

    I love tagging NPC's a DEAD, just to show the players how they have utterly failed to keep the realm safe and guilt trip them. The best way to deal with murder hobo players is to kill off the NPC's yourself and make it look like they could have prevented it. Soon the campaign becomes a race to complete the quest before the DM kills the entire world!

  • UselessTriviaMan
    UselessTriviaMan
    Posts: 531

    Heh, you might want to check out The Haunted by @LordMisha and see what really fun stuff you can do with dead characters...


    Ptolus, City by the Spire - 2016 Campaign of the Year

    "Please pay attention very carefully, because this is the truest thing a stranger will ever say to you: In the face of such hopelessness as our eventual, unavoidable death, there is little sense in not at least TRYING to accomplish all your wildest dreams in life."  - - Kevin Smith

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    Frak that is deliciously mean.

    UselessTriviaMan holy hell I love it! I didn't realise it put data attributes on the element! That's so freaking cool.

  • weasel0
    weasel0
    Posts: 415

    Some have utilized invisible characters like a space at the beginning of the name to force a sort. Don't know if the trick still works as it's been a long time since I last saw someone seriously hunting down any trick to force it but this was one.

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    Thank you that's handy

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    Yes, that trick still works.  A while back I thought it was a bug and almost "fixed" it, but then realized there were a number of GMs purposefully using it.

    You can do multiple levels of "sorting".  All "1 space before the name" Characters will sort into the same group.  And all "2 spaces before the name" Characters will sort into another group, and so on.  I can't remember if more spaces sort to the top, or to the bottom.  Experiment a little to make sure you don't waste a bunch of time setting the spaces and then find you want them switched.

    The spaces are ignored by the html/browser, so they don't show up in the display of the names anywhere except in the Edit screen textbox.

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    That's a neat trick.

    It would be nice if that kind of grouping could be done by tag instead, people using a work around suggests a need for something.

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    Totally agreed that kind of usage behavior suggests a need for something.  The templates idea I noted above I think would both keep the Characters index page "uncomplicated", and enable GMs to fully customize the groupings any way they want.  I could definitely see something like a template that just takes a tag and builds/presents a grid of Characters that have that tag.  If instead we just add some grouping and sorting options to the Characters index page, I think we'd end up making the page complicated to use, and we'd continue to have requests for further specialized grouping/sorting.  Feel free to disagree if you see it differently.

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • jodie
    jodie
    Posts: 74

    I think you're right. Something really simple would be the only way forward. If I see some piece of UX that looks amazingly perfect I'll screenshot it.

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    That would be much appreciated, thanks!

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • NimrodYanai
    NimrodYanai
    Posts: 69

    Just putting my two cents in about this.

    When I create characters, I always put a lot of tags for them: gender, location, living/dead, species, class, etc.

    I can then use these tags in the search bar.

    There are two options which will be the easiest to implement to make it even simpler:


    1. Add a tags list on the right. Each time a new tag is written, it is added to the list (the list should be sortable by name or number of appearances). Clicking it will do two things:

      A. It will display only characters with that tag.

      B. It will remove tags from the filters list that are not viable anymore. That way, you can slowly make your search more precise by applying extra filters.

      The way it works right now is that filters are working exactly the opposite as they are meant to - adding a filter ADDS characters to the search results. For example if I choose Dwarf, then Orc, it will show me all the characters that are either Orcs or Dwarves.

      In reality, once I chose Dwarf, any tag for a character that doesn't also have the Dwarf tag should disappear.

    2. Add groups. A group can be anything the DM want it to be, and characters can be in more than one group.

      For example, a character can be both in the Nobles group and the Watch group.

      Then on the main page, you need to be able to sort by name (as is currently the default) or by group (which will then display the group names by name, and inside all characters in the group by name).

    That will make navigating the characters page much simpler.

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    @NimrodYanai, can you give me a scenario in your game when you would want to be able to search by narrowing down?

    For groups, my comment above (second from the top) still feels true to me ... adding groups to this page would overcomplicate it.  But we do need a feature that enables creating groups.  It just needs to be something that creates them as individual wiki pages instead.

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • ragnarhawk
    Posts: 121

    This is actually one reason why I don't make much use of tags on OP.  The "Or" function it uses is just counterintuitive.  An example that I would use...  I want to find a "Male", "Dwarf" "Noble" in "Waterdeep"...  If it was an "And" function, I would have tags for each of those attributes, and it would narrow the list right down.  As it stands, I will get all Males, all Dwarves, all Nobles, and every page tagged for Waterdeep - the opposite of a filter

  • NimrodYanai
    NimrodYanai
    Posts: 69

    @thaen

    See the comment above me, that's exactly the issue.

    A limiter is supposed to LIMIT the results, to be used when we want to get an exact match search.

    Basically ALL search engines work this way (all professional ones, anyway, and I would know as I work at the industry).

  • UselessTriviaMan
    UselessTriviaMan
    Posts: 531

    I concur that if there were a way to filter via multiple tags it would greatly enhance the functionality of that tool.


    Ptolus, City by the Spire - 2016 Campaign of the Year

    "Please pay attention very carefully, because this is the truest thing a stranger will ever say to you: In the face of such hopelessness as our eventual, unavoidable death, there is little sense in not at least TRYING to accomplish all your wildest dreams in life."  - - Kevin Smith

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    @ragnarhawk, @NimrodYanai, @UselessTriviaMan, I super appreciate that feedback!

    I'm always wary of changing something that seems like it should work a different way, if it has already been in place for a while.  There's usually a reason it worked that way.  Not always, but often.

    But in this case, all 3 of you said the feature would be more useful in your games if it worked a different way.

    So, I just deployed some changes to the search to make it filter by ANDing the tags.  The other "filters" of PC/NPC and Public/GM-Only are still OR, but there's no benefit to making those AND since they are opposites, so you'd never actually want to AND them.

    Also, it will now dim tags that won't filter further.  So you can see which tags will enable even narrower filtering.

    Also noticed that the Items text search/filter wasn't working for names (it was only filtering on the tags).  That should be fixed now too.

    Let me know if you see any issues.

     

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • UselessTriviaMan
    UselessTriviaMan
    Posts: 531

    The change you made might be useful in some instances, but it's not what I meant. You made modification to the overall classes, but we're wanting a modification to the Tags filter.

    Example: In my wiki I have built a database of monsters. Each one is tagged with its Type (undead, monstrosity, beast, etc.) and its CR (challenge rating). Currently I can filter my search by Type or by CR, but not both. I'd love to be able to filter down to find all the available CR4 Undead in my database without having to scroll through everything.


    Ptolus, City by the Spire - 2016 Campaign of the Year

    "Please pay attention very carefully, because this is the truest thing a stranger will ever say to you: In the face of such hopelessness as our eventual, unavoidable death, there is little sense in not at least TRYING to accomplish all your wildest dreams in life."  - - Kevin Smith

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    @UselessTriviaMan, to clarify, the feature you're talking about is related to the OP overall Search, since you want to search Wiki Pages.  You're not talking about the Characters page filtering, right?

    @ragnarhawk, @NimrodYanai, were you both talking about the OP overall Search, too?

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • UselessTriviaMan
    UselessTriviaMan
    Posts: 531

    Not exactly. When I click on a tag, it takes me to a list of everything in my site that has that tag. There's also a list of all tags in the right-hand column. I cannot select a second tag to further filter my results, but I'd really like to be able to do that.

    image


    Ptolus, City by the Spire - 2016 Campaign of the Year

    "Please pay attention very carefully, because this is the truest thing a stranger will ever say to you: In the face of such hopelessness as our eventual, unavoidable death, there is little sense in not at least TRYING to accomplish all your wildest dreams in life."  - - Kevin Smith

  • UselessTriviaMan
    UselessTriviaMan
    Posts: 531

    I'd like to be able to sort out all the pages with both the CR20 and Undead tags, for example.


    Ptolus, City by the Spire - 2016 Campaign of the Year

    "Please pay attention very carefully, because this is the truest thing a stranger will ever say to you: In the face of such hopelessness as our eventual, unavoidable death, there is little sense in not at least TRYING to accomplish all your wildest dreams in life."  - - Kevin Smith

  • NimrodYanai
    NimrodYanai
    Posts: 69

    I prefer the change you made, yes.

    BTW - if you want to have it much more professional, you can have a switch button to choose whether you want your limiters to work with AND or OR.



    The issue now is that choosing a limiter doesn't change the result number next to each of them.

    For example, I have 9 characters with the tag "Male" and 1 with fighter. If I select the fighter one, it still says "9" next to "Male", which is incredibly confusing, since there is now only 1 viable answer to it.

    I know it's painfuly annoying, and maybe I only care because I'm in the industry and so I know how these things work.

    As for @UselessTriviaMan's comment, I actually don't mind it that much where he showed it. That page is not a search page, but an index of the tags, so pressing one just shows you what pages have that tag.

    It would be nice to have them as limiters, but I'm not sure it's completely required.

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    @UselessTriviaMan, got it.  Okay, I added a "hidden feature" for you (anyone else can use it too, they just need to know it exists ... ).

    You can filter that overall Search by multiple tags ... but it only works in the url ... there's no UI support for it.  So you can't click to find it, which is why I'm saying it's "hidden".

    So, if you click on your Undead tag, you'll get this url:

    https://ptolus-city-by-the-spire-by-bryan.obsidianportal.com/search?tag=Undead

    Then, you can filter that by as many other tags as you want, just by separating them with commas.  So for your CR20 example, you would do:

    https://ptolus-city-by-the-spire-by-bryan.obsidianportal.com/search?tag=Undead,CR20

    Note that there is no space between the comma and the tags.

    Let me know how that works for you or if you see any issues.  If you enter a tag that doesn't match any tags in your Campaign, or you have a space between the comma and the tags, it'll return all results in the Campaign ... so if you see tons of results that you aren't expecting, that's a clue to look at the url and see if anything looks off.

     

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    @NimrodYanai, cool!  Glad I got close to what you were wanting.

    Noted on the tag counts.  I'll add that to the Feature Requests list.

    Obsidian Portal Developer

  • UselessTriviaMan
    UselessTriviaMan
    Posts: 531

    Holy...

    Son of a...

    Dude, that ROCKS! Thank you @thaen!

     


    Ptolus, City by the Spire - 2016 Campaign of the Year

    "Please pay attention very carefully, because this is the truest thing a stranger will ever say to you: In the face of such hopelessness as our eventual, unavoidable death, there is little sense in not at least TRYING to accomplish all your wildest dreams in life."  - - Kevin Smith

  • thaen
    thaen
    Posts: 657

    Huzzah!!  : )

    Obsidian Portal Developer

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