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Tutorial Suggestion


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While streaming and discussing the topic of the tutorial and other various system in the game I came up with an idea for a potential non-intrusive tutorial.

A hot-keyed Survival Guide which will explain the various parts of survival in the world of Vintage Story.
This book would contain explanations about most of the systems in the game and would assist new players in understanding some of the more obscure mechanics. I also suggest that there be possibly images or videos/gifs that demonstrate some of the systems leaving no ambiguity for the player. 

The controls displayed in the guide would have to be dynamic and reflect the players current control scheme as to not cause confusion.

Given that it could be a book-styled interface it would be lore friendly and fit the games theme too.

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So right now there is an in-game journal that you can reach by pressing J for those who do not know. This journal I assume will eventually be used for tutorials and lore.

Now if it was just a book with every tutorial from the start, players would take one look at it, decide that's a lot to read, close it and move on. Later when they can't figure something out, some with a good memory will remember it, a lot will forget it even existed. To fix this the book should be broken up into smaller segments and the players should be given reminders.

To break the book into sections you need a good index. The first index should allow you to flip to the tutorial index or lore index. From there it allows you to flip to each of the chapters which each contain a tutorial. For instance, the chapter on making charcoal would show how to make firewood and use it to construct a charcoal pit. When it comes to the charcoal pit construction there would be several pictures showing how the pit is constructed. There would be an option to flip through these pictures rapidly like a flip book which would give you the illusion of a gif or animation. Beyond not needing a way to add gifs to the game, or being able to pause to study a picture more closely, it's awesome and immersive.

To further break the tutorial part down, don't reveal it all at once. Start with only the basics like resource identification. Then when a certain trigger happens (such as getting your first flint or log) it unlocks a chapter. When a chapter is unlocked a sound is played and some text briefly flashes on the screen letting the player know what chapter title they have unlocked and the index it is on (lore, vanilla, modname). At this point, the player can stop and read the new chapter or continue doing what they are doing. This does a few things. It notifies the player in a non-intrusive way that there is a tutorial that is relevant to their current situation which may help them out. It reminds the player that there is a journal full of tutorials that they can refer to if they need help. It makes the player feel rewarded because when a celebratory sound ensues from something that you did, that is how you feel. The player will feel they are progressing because they have unlocked something. It paces the rate in which the player learns new content so they don't get burned out on the tutorial.

This same method can be done for in-game lore such as breaking your first clay vessel, obtaining a temporal gear, monsters being unlocked in a world, etc. Also by extending the ability to add your own index and chapters to modders, they can add their own tutorials and triggers to the lore book so people don't have to keep referring to their mod thread on how to make lamp posts or why their stone chisel won't work without a hammer.

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