Jun 132012

DDO on the Droid RAZR

If only: DDO shared bank on a Droid RAZR

Today’s post focuses on capabilities that would be a great fit for a DDO smartphone app.

In yesterday’s post, people posted ideas for capabilities that would go well on a smartphone app (or apps?). Crafting, vendor interactions, and guild ship management seem like obviously good ideas. If I may, I would add lotteries to that list.

Samius had some other ideas, thinking outside of the box to include areas that are not just ports of existing in-game capabilities: character planner, LFM monitor and DPS calculator. Even a minigame.

Very good and thank you for your contributions! Excellent ideas, one and all.

My main focus is inventory. It just drives me crazy how much time I spend in the game playing “inventory”. I don’t want to play “inventory”, I want to play DDO!

Or maybe it is because I am a system architect in real life and have spent most of my career involved in inventory management. I just can’t help myself?

But regardless. Inventory management is a perfect candidate for an app.

I started with the idea “I want to be able to manage all of my inventory from my phone, anywhere, anytime”. What would I need to succeed with that one concept?

This is the result:

Character List Display
A list of all characters including a visual indicator as to which ones have mail. Sortable by name, server, or mail status. Able to log in on any character from this screen except characters who are already in the game.

Clicking a character on this screen shows the character tooltip. Holding your finger on one opens the login menu for that character.

Character Display
A summary of the active character similar to myDDOLite, but including current location and current resurrection point.

Character Quest Display
A list similar to the /quest command. An easy transition toggles this display to instead show a list similar to the /quest completions command

Character Inventory Display
This is really the big one, the heart of the entire concept: a list of all inventory items for the active character including a visual indicator as to which ones are equipped. Sortable by name, type, or equip status.

Clicking one shows the item tooltip. Holding your finger on one opens a distribution menu including equip, bank, shared bank, mail, auction house, deconstruct, or Stone of Change.

  • Selecting mail next requires you to enter a destination character name and (optional) message
  • Selecting AH requires you to set price, time and (optional) buyout
  • Selecting equip requires the selection of a hand if the item is a ring
  • Selecting deconstruct requires you to choose deconstruction type – displaying only the types of deconstruct for which the character has adequate deconstruction material
  • Stone of Change is only available for dragonshards and only when the selected item is a stack large enough to “crunch” correctly

Mail Display
A list of all incoming mail items for the active character, and their days remaining with visual indicators as to which ones have attached items and attached money. Sortable by name, days remaining, item attachment indicator, money attachment indicator.

Clicking a message opens it. Holding your finger on one opens a disposition menu including Reply, Take Item, Take Money, Take all, Delete, Take All & Delete.

A display menu would be needed too that toggles between Confirmed and Unconfirmed. It would be really nice if this display menu also allowed the user to apply the disposition menu choices to everything in the mailbox all at once. Items with attachments would not delete unless the user selected Take All & Delete.

Bank Display
The existing bank displays would be perfect! Need to have easy transitions between bank, shared bank and TR bank.

Auction House Display
The existing AH displays would work fine if they can be adapted to a mobile form factor.

So there you have it. One man’s dream for a pocket version of DDO that not only lets me take DDO anywhere I want, but also makes my game time more fun when I am logged into the main gaming client.

I could write this app, if only the services it would need to consume existed. Services, hint hint.

Turbine are you listening?

πŸ™‚ πŸ˜€ πŸ™‚

Series Recap:

  13 Responses to “Imagine: Inventory anywhere? My dream DDO app (part 2 of the DDO app series)”

Comments (13)
  1. I would like to see it happen, but i don’t think it will. Some day a new game will come out with something like this in mind and i think it will be huge. But trying to glue it into the current model i just don’t know.

    Hope i am wrong, But if DDo wants to keep leading the way in game styles bring the game to the players at all times is the way to do so.

  2. Like samius said. What Geoff is suggesting here would make ddo huge under the mmorpg intersted players. and admit it would be a very very nice addition. O, How I hope that Turbine is listening to this.

  3. That kind of integration with apps would be awesome. It probably won’t happen but it would be neat. Like the idea of keeping track of LFMs. Or your suggestion about AH trades or inventory. I mean I’d LOVE the ability to search for an item across all my mules so I don’t have to waste time loging into all of them for that named item.

    Or even better – a app where you could move stuff from your bank to a mule.

    The creative ideas are endless, but it still runs into the physical wall of what’s possible. Who knows – maybe the devs see a purpose with making sure this can be done.

  4. Guild Wars 2 is providing a mobile app. It seems to be mostly chat from your device with people in game, But you can also ping the map, see what your friends are doing etc.

    Here is the url if anyone is interested:

  5. never say never…. magelo was a site that hosted characters from many a mmo/for profile views out of game… it would let you check bags/items/bank… but not move anything/I used to use it for planning my character maintenance/bazaar store toon (check sales): etc… when on Everquest/this on my android for ddo would be ideal/linked with sites like ddowiki and the compendeum here would be a dream come true for the quester and crafter alike/so many ingredients to have to research in my bags… its like taking a course at times…lol

  6. Geoff, can I be the well-meaning fly in the ointment and ask some pretty non-tech-professional questions? I really like your app ideas and by asking, I hope that I’m being helpful to your process.

    Much of DDO interfaces require your toon be at a specific location to interact with one of these interfaces (bank or crafting or merchant, etc). I’m no expert but that seems to be intrinsic to the process. How would the DDOapp work around that?

    Logging in as a specific character is also required to interface. I’m not even sure where I’m going with this train of thought, but if an app were available, would it perhaps be possible to have a toon be both logged into the game and running a quest, while at the same time the player is getting that toon something from the Auction House or Mail and putting that into inventory? That would seem problematic to me. Or, more specifically, I would assume Turbine has a problem with allowing that. So how would that be addressed?

    PLEASE understand I really, really love the idea of not having to manage my inventory while sitting at my PC or being able to check out the AH over my lunch break. I would love for your app to come to fruition. Thanks!

  7. I rarely pay for apps…I would pay money for this app though. One question I have is could you log into a character on the app while actually playing another character on the same server/acct.

  8. @cheater & @mar: I suspect it would be easiest to simply prevent activity with an active character that is also logged in with the game client.

    @cheater: I am not a Turbine dev, so I don’t know this, but I don’t think physical location has anything to do with any of these capabilities. You have to be able to open the correct UI, and then the UI invokes the correct programming areas. DDO is currently set up to limit access to the UIs to specific areas (like mailbox for the mail UI, bank for the bank UI, etc) but it doesn’t have to be. As evidence, consider that there are occasional bugs where UIs remain open like the ATDQ entry UI. Once you had that one open you could DDoor to Zawabi’s refuge, fly to the Marketplace, buy/repair/sell/whatever but still have the UI open the whole time. Whenever you were ready, you could click Enter and you’d be right back in the dungeon.

    And please, never apologize for constructive comments, even if they disagree with me. Maybe I should say especially if they disagree with me πŸ™‚

  9. I think it’s a great idea and even if done in a less limited manner (no mail/bank interaction unless the toon was in such a location or not at all) I’d still be willing to pay for the app. If such interaction were left out, the client wouldn’t need to have an engine but more a GUI that makes queries to the game database, which would already be huge πŸ™‚

    Love your posts, as always, have a nice day!

  10. πŸ™‚ ah, but the options available when holding your finger on an item, would mean you no longer have to run around in DDO to do those things. πŸ™‚ I sort of think turbine made the game like it is on purpose, so an app that would save you from a lot of running around time? Prob not gonna happen (but who knows). Nice idea, though. πŸ™‚

  11. @ CheaterJoe: To add to that I think that loggong in with a specific character won’t be necessary, think of it as your overview you have of your toons in myddo. As for location normally it would be indeed as Geoffhanna would say. The only 2 big things that I can think of right away might that can be really problematic are. 1)active character while using the app, this could create a database lock because at certain time both instances would try to update the same record and would keep waiting on each other. 2) I think that it would burden the servers/databases too much if it needs to query for too many toons. so best there is set a max on toons you can select for this. maybe use the public option of the characters of this and set a max on it.

    I like this topic so much I am bothering to look the blog back up just to see if there are new comments. That’s the first for me πŸ˜‰

  12. Database locks are largely a thing of the past, even with “smaller” databases, except in a very few particular situations.

    I think you’d want to avoid having separate queries and so forth just for this app. It doubles the amount of code you have to maintain. Much better to generalize the code you already have (or add a decoupling layer to its entry point) and use that for both the main application and the mobile app.

    But it is easy to come up with a SOA integration proposal for code I’ve never even seen πŸ™‚ Why, as far as I know, the effort would be trivial! Except no, nothing is ever trivial with existing code.

    Thanks for the nice comments everyone, good conversation. Now get on the phone, call your Senators, and tell them to get past this partisan gridlock and approve the DDO Mobile App.

  13. I want my MTV! …oops, my DDOGEOFFAPP!!!

What do you think?

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