Warning: Angry Rant Ahead. Proceed at your own peril. You have been warned.
Imagine that you are playing DDO in first-person view. Maybe you don’t have to imagine, maybe you already do this. Monsters look much more fierce in person than they do from isometric distance. Everything looks more fierce. It is a much more personal way to play, and much more immersive. Fun.
But also, much more difficult. DDO was not designed for FPV; it was added after the game launched. But it was sort of slapped on, in such a way that none of the visual cues that you get when playing isometrically are available. You cannot tell what weapon you have equipped, or if you successfully cast a spell. Even worse, Turbine’s decision to allow all of the players and their summonses to stand inside each other mean that an FPV player spends a lot of time trying to see out of a warforged. Or an owlbear.
The remedy is to be able to quickly and easily pull your point of view back a couple of feet and take a look around, returning to FPV again when you have what you need. And, voila, the mouse wheel allows exactly that! Easily accessible, even in the stress of combat, pull your POV back and forth as you need with the push of a finger.
Ah but wait. There is a bug in the DDO mouse wheel that causes it to stop working whenever you (open an inventory bag/do something else we have never clearly defined in inventory) and when this happens, the only solution is to
log the character out restart the game client to “restart” the wheel.
Suddenly, in the middle of combat, you realize you have lost a key ability to see. Yes, there is a keyboard equivalent (the plus and minus keys) but they are on the keyboard. No one who learned to play MMOs in WASD/mouselook mode has a free hand to click pluses on the keyboard. Not in a fight.
This bug is annoying for everyone, but if you are a first-person-view player this is a major quality-of-life issue. Major.
Yet the bug is now somewhere around eight years old. Think about that. Imagine being a player who experiences a major quality of life issue – for years – bug reporting it as they are told to do, working around it, but to no avail. Meanwhile, places where we can jump to shorten a quest (or upgrade an epic weapon with heroic ingredients) get fixed immediately – sometimes, in days. While you are regularly forced to
log out and log back in restart your game client for a stupid bug, and have been for years.
Don’t believe me? Here is someone referencing this bug as a long-term annoyance in 2011. Four years ago, it was already an old, long-standing bug.
And now to make it personal, my Gamer Girl is a first-person-view player. For me, this is not some abstract issue but something that I see my love go through every time we play.
Take some pride in your work, Turbine. I know that sounds harsh, but this isn’t some esoteric calculation with weird timing involved, it is mouse input. Just about the most fundamental thing that exists in a PC game. How can you ignore a flawed mouse operation for eight years?
Enough is enough. There is just no excuse for this.
Fix the damn mouse wheel bug already.
🙁 >:( 🙁
[Edit] I thought logging out was enough to fix the bug but apparently one needs to actually restart the client. I changed references to “logging out” to reflect this.