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Thread: Make T1/2 lockpicking great again mod. is it possible?

  1. #1
    New Member
    Registered: Mar 2020

    Make T1/2 lockpicking great again mod. is it possible?

    Hi.
    I have a question about a seemingly simple mod to improve the lockpicking in T1/T2.

    Is it possible to script the game so that the closer the lock/dor knob is to the player's face (ie. the center of the screen) the less time you waste on picking?

    I imagine creating a virtual straight line which connects (in 3D) the center of the screen (tip of player's nose sort to speak) with a single point on the keyhole/knob/lock, and the shorter the line is the less time the picking takes.

    I hate when games waste my time for no reason. picking locks in T1/2 is nothing more than than a time waste. and on top of that as a player you don't even have any way to improve upon it. while anything else in these games requires some level of skill, the lockpicking is purely a mindless action of holding a button and waiting. it's ok if it's under a 3s per lock, otherwise it's awful and annoying.
    at least in TDS once you master the UI you can pick a lock in no time, but it's not perfect because you can't look around while doing it and you can't leave a lock half picked, go back and finish the rest, you always have to redo it from start.

    My thinking is with this mod you could at the very least have a chance to lessen this pain of completely halting your tracks, pushing and holding the button until the game gladly lets you continue having fun.
    IMO, unless the lock is guarded by NPCs or in plain sight where a guard or a camera can spot you any time, a lock requiring more than 3s to pick is just disrespectful to the player.

    with the mod I'm describing you'd always have to take into consideration both time and your surroundings whilie picking, no matter the place or a lock. and in true Thief fashion you'd have to balance your focus on the lock with the need to look around to check if you can safely continue. this way you could at least be done instantly with all the stupid random locks, which are hidden out of the way, unguarded.

    Extreme cases would be:
    a) get as close to the lock as possible, focus on it (center the view, don't move/look around) = save the most amount of time on picking (fastest)
    b) don't focus on the lock, but allow yourself to better see the surroundings = standard (slowest) picking.
    Anything in between can be calculated with an exponential function, ie. like IRL, the closer you can get your face to the lock and the more focused your eyes and ears are on it, the less time it takes to pick.

    What I don't like about vanilla picking is no matter how well you position yourself, as long as the lock is frobbable it takes the exact amount of time to pick every time. you'd think with all the other mods T1/2 got over the years, picking would already be fixed by now.
    Some FMs have shorter frob distance and it does make the picking harder, but this also affects any other basic action (looting, opening the doors etc.) and it still doesn't make the issue of wasting your time go away (lock picking still takes same amount of time).

    Also to reiterate, I do NOT want to make existing locks longer to pick - exactly the opposite - I want to give the player the ability to pick them quicker by focusing on the lock alone (and optimising according to need).

    Please, tell, if this kind of thing is even possible in T1/T2? Maybe someone already tried it before. I'm curious.
    Cheers.
    thieff
    Last edited by thieff; 24th Jan 2021 at 18:35. Reason: wording

  2. #2
    I wouldn't personally want that, but it gets me thinking that I wish the frob distance for locks could be customized by the player via a mod tool. Maybe the mod adds a new slider in the in-game menu. 100% is standard default distance and you can't set further out than that. But you can move the slider to, say, 25% and that would require you to be much closer to the door/lock to interact with it.

    For instance, if I want to do a playthrough where I wish to need to be much closer to the door/lock, then I could adjust the slider to my desire

    It would create additional challenge and tension that is missed because we can currently lockpick from far away shadows sometimes

    Hopefully it is possible to make the slider for just locks, and not every object?

    Do you think this would resolve the issue you bring up in OP and would it be an attractive solution, I wonder?

    I'm tempted to throw door frobbing into this slider setting, too, but I think that'd cause too many problems. E.g., Setting slider to 25% might make the act of swinging doors open a pain as your player model would probably get in the way a lot

  3. #3
    New Member
    Registered: Mar 2020
    Hi.
    If it's possible to tweak frob distance for lock picking alone it could sort of work (would force the player to get to the lock as close as possible), not so much if that affected other actions (opening the doors, pickpocketing etc.) or if it was limited in some other way.
    And even if this slider setting was somehow achievable, you'd have to make every lock in every mission shorter to pick by default, because as a player the last thing I want from Thief games, especially when random ridiculously long picking locks are considered, is to force me to accomodate for shorter frob distance on top of wasting my time on mindless lockpicking.
    Cheers,

  4. #4
    Ahh, I misunderstood you earlier. I took this quote by you and gave it more weight than I should have:
    Quote Originally Posted by thieff View Post
    with the mod I'm describing you'd always have to take into consideration both time and your surroundings whilie picking, no matter the place or a lock. and in true Thief fashion you'd have to balance your focus on the lock with the need to look around to check if you can safely continue."
    I took this to mean you liked the anxiety felt while trying to pick a lock when there's a chance of being caught. So, my proposed method would cause you to experience this tension more frequently because you'd have to be closer to the door to pick the lock. The time needed to lockpick wouldn't change in my proposal.

    I now better understand you really just want the lockpick time to be shortened, probably considerably, when you're close to the lockpick... because you truly don't like the lockpicking mechanic at all.

    Oh well, it's okay. We're of different mindsets. I actually like Thief 1/2 lockpicking; and like it the best of all the Thief and Thief-like games/mods. I like that I don't have to jiggle my mouse or complete some superficial or cumbersome mini-game puzzle to pick locks. I'm looking for least mouse/keyboard effort possible, while still creating tension... and Thief 1/2 does that. And it would do that more with my idea implemented.

    Thief Deadly Shadows' lockpicking is not good, imo. Even if it was working as it was probably intended I wouldn't like it. As it is in the game, it's just mindless jiggling and clicking.

    The Dark Mod's lockpicking is cool and a neat idea, but for me, I seriously just want to hold my mouse button down and wait like T1/T2. I truly don't want or need a mini-game puzzle.

    Fallout 4's lockpicking requires effort, too. So, for me, nope!

    I can't remember if Dishonored has a lockpicking mini-game, but if it does, nope!

    Kingdom Come: Deliverance has a lockpicking mini-game. No thanks!

    Etc.

    To me, lockpicking in any game is a mindless action; including in T1/T2. So the path of least resistance for me is T1/T2's solution. If I'm going to spend time lockpicking, I want minimal effort. For The Dark Mod, I had to use some cheat or script a few years back to make it more like T1/T2's, and it still wasn't T1/T2 enough for me

    T1/T2 is my favorite. I actually enjoy it, and its sound effects. Even when the lock is in some basement a guard never patrols.

    Quote Originally Posted by thieff View Post
    IMO, unless the lock is guarded by NPCs or in plain sight where a guard or a camera can spot you any time, a lock requiring more than 3s to pick is just disrespectful to the player.
    I disagree. Part of the beauty of Thief, for me, is that it does what it can (for the most part) to feel like a living, breathing real world that would exist whether or not me, the player, is there behind a keyboard and a mouse; rather than a gamey world with everything put in a gamey place or designed in a gamey way just because me, the player, wants to play a game. So, having a locked chest that's in a civilian's bedroom where a guard will never go into take a decent length of time to open is more than okay by me. It's how it would be in real life. Someone's prized possessions wouldn't magically be behind a lock that takes minimal time to lockpick just because no guard will come in and see you. AAA titles love to implement gamey things. I think making locks harder to pick when guards are around and easier to pick when they're not would be pretty gamey.

    This is similar to how T1/T2 has rooms that you go into and there's nothing in them. I see some streamers complain about that. For me, I feel it's just how real life would be. Not every nook and cranny you explore in real life would have a gold coin waiting for you. Only gamey games reward every single player effort, and make sure every room has an obvious purpose and/or exploration reward.

    I can see how some would want your mod idea, so I see nothing wrong with implementing it and having it be an optional download for those who feel the same. I wouldn't want it to ever become the default behavior of the game, though. Interesting thought to have a virtual straight line in 3D space
    Last edited by Darkness_Falls; 25th Jan 2021 at 03:51.

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