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What are some example of excellent QoL features in video games.

levyjl1988

Member
QoL features don't get much acknowledgment these days. This post is about appreciating such QoL features that enhanced or made your gaming much better and less like a chore or hassle to get around.
What are some examples of games you enjoy that has such QoL features?

Bottomless inventory.
Games like Dark Souls and Horizon Forbidden West have bottomless inventory, no need to go into the menu and delete items to make room for others, you just collect and move on, and you can sort whenever at your own pace.
Accessing the menu in games really disrupts the game and flow is often micromanaged, It's such a hassle. Nothing ruins immersion more than stopping the game to manage inventory.

The option to pick up items without stopping.
Horizon added this feature in a patch.
I wish more games would adopt this. I think Monster Hunter World and Rise did this too so it doesn't halt the flow of the game.

Purchasing missable items from a vendor.
This feature was added in Mass Effect 3, if you did a one-and-done level and missed an upgrade you can go to a shop on the Citadel and purchase that missed item.
The only penalty for missing it the first time and not being through on your exploration is the penalty of buying it with credits. I think that is an excellent compromise.
Better than playing through the game, realizing you missed it, and feeling regret through the rest of the playthrough or being forced to play with a guide, then that plays like a chore and following an instruction manual than actually playing a game.

Collectables are highlighted on the map after collecting them.
I like this feature in Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild where when you collect a korok seed it is immediately highlighted on the map. An icon shows up and shows that you collected that one.
I'm not fond of games showing you outright where the collectibles are like Sunset Overdrive or Saints Row, where you purchase a map or some sort and it shows on your minimap.
It takes away from exploring. The idea of filling up a map is better. And if a player wants to know which collectible they are missing then they can compare their map with a completed map online.

The ability to toggle and filter in maps.
I really like this QoL of feature, it's present in Monster Hunter Rise and CyberPunk 2077 where one can access the menu and filter between different types of items, NPCs, warp points, etc. Better than seeing the cluster of a mess all on one map.

Once you collect an item it autosaves.
I enjoy this feature. That means you don't have to complete the rest of the level to have the game save it.
Games that DO NOT do this is Lost Planet and Alan Wake, those game can suck a dick.

The ability to quickly save anywhere.
I always hate games where you have to go to a designated place to save.
The ability to just quickly save anywhere and load up that quick save is a god send and very convenient when you are interrupted in gaming and have to do real-life stuff.
With a quick save you can continue exactly where you left off.

Unlimited Save files, kinda.
I enjoyed games like Skyrim on the Xbox 360, that game allowed you up to 500 saves I think that you can create without overwriting your progress over another save.
I just like that feature where you are not forced to accidentally overwrite, you are not limited by the constraints of the game.

Character filter save files.
Games like Mass Effect, Elder Scrolls, Fallout, and Dragon Age: Origins have this. Where you are running multiple characters and you can filter your save by those characters.
Unlike CyberPunk 2077, that game does not have that feature, it's a mess of a stream of save files rather than it being filtered and with limited save slots.
Terrible.

The ability to return to past areas and collect the things that you missed the first time around.
Nothing sucks more than entering a point of no return and being unable to go back and collect the things you missed there.
I hate it in every game. In CyberPunk 2077 I missed stuff in Arasaka tower and didn't visit the roof because the game had a sense of urgency and I missed out on the iconic weapon at the top.
Well fuck it, I did everything in the game I wanted to collect everything, so I glitch myself back up there.




Anyway, that's my list, what are some QoL features you appreciate in video games?
 

AV

We ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space
Off the top of my head...
  • Walking into enemies much weaker than you in Earthbound resulting in an instant victory screen, no need to mash A through a battle.
  • False Swipe in Pokémon G/S/C, an attack which always left Pokémon on 1 HP so they were easy to catch.
  • In Inscryption, if you're clearly going to win the match, the AI will offer to surrender to save you time.
  • Being able to just run over gold to pick it up in ARPGs, I dunno where this started but it sure as shit wasn't D2. clickclickclick
  • Elden Ring's Stake of Marika system. Yeah, yeah, we've all played Dark Souls, we get it, running back to the boss for 5 minutes is "engaging". Nah, being able to almost instantly retry was a breath of fresh air.
  • Super Meat Boy just instantly restarting you after death without even a button prompt was great.
  • FF8, The ability to just swap all junctioned GF and magic to another party member when forced to switch prevented me from dropping that game.
 
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Most of those are cool QoL features, but others feel more like the games being casualized, like the bottomless inventory systems or the ability to savescum your way through a game.

I think the former makes sense in some games, but I still like inventories like those in RE4 or Diablo II, where you have to pick your items and consider the space they take in the inventory, adding a layer of strategy to it.

The later is just a way of killing any kind of tension during the game. Games that are designed around trial and error and savescum are the worst.
 

AV

We ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space
Conversely many WoW players argue that the QoL they added slowly over time was what killed the game off. Some people didn't even like summoning stones in TBC because it made warlocks less important.
 

MDSLKTR

Member
Still the best damn maps in gaming

 

Guilty_AI

Gold Member
Some of these feel less like QoL and more casualization of the game. A bottomless inventory for example would completely destroy some games like Deus Ex, where what you choose to carry and leave is a fundamental part of your character build.

I think what consists good QoL features really goes on a game-to-game basis, as well as platform-to-platform.
 

Sentenza

Member
Some of these feel less like QoL and more casualization of the game. A bottomless inventory for example would completely destroy some games like Deus Ex, where what you choose to carry and leave is a fundamental part of your character build.

I think what consists good QoL features really goes on a game-to-game basis, as well as platform-to-platform.
Yep. I'm all for actual "quality of life" improvements in UI and controls that allow you to "do the same thing more efficiently", but what a lot of people seem to want, often, is convenient cheats.
Except not everything that's convenient makes a game better. Sometimes the opposite is true.
A gun with infinite ammo and one-shot-kill capabilities would be super convenient too, but it would wreck the game's balance and challenge on the long run.
 

STARSBarry

Gold Member
Conversely many WoW players argue that the QoL they added slowly over time was what killed the game off. Some people didn't even like summoning stones in TBC because it made warlocks less important.

I think MMO's have a unique circumstances due to the way the genre works that this might actually be true.

What makes MMO's unique from multiplayer games is the level of social interactivity with the large playerbase. By essentially getting people to teleport around the world you reduce the chances of people to meet or engage with each other.

In many ways I would say the change from dedicated servers to match making has resulted in a similair trend in shooters, games like Team Fortress 2 would not have latest so long without community servers. Multiplayer games in general feel far less personal due to this. Hell Let Loose for example relies on Community severs and I find people singing it's praises largely due to how people all communicate and work together in squad. In many ways that's how WoW used to work, but no longer does, the hoops might have seemed to be annoying, but actually they where what brought every one together, but these days... well I don't play anymore outside of classic not since mists.
 
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b0uncyfr0

Member
60 fps in menus when the game is 30 fps... fucking glorious.

If it were up to me, all menus would be 90+ fps. There is no excuse anymore for a laggy, slow UI/menu.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
- Unlimited stamina/running
- Multiple game save files
- When you beat a level, the game lets you replay that mission again for fun (I replayed my fav Ace Combat missions and skipped the shitty ones like escorting and canyon runs)
- You cant accidentally sell or drop a mandatory quest item
- You can skip cut scenes
 

delfrickintree

Neo Member
The Final Fantasy remasters where you can fast forward the game, as well as "god mode" where you can max your abilities during battle. Having played the games as a kid and just wanting to breeze through it without the timesink, it made it actually enjoyable instead of a grindy slog.

Also the new PS+ classic games for ps1 games have a REWIND and quicksave feature, which eliminates any frustration of starting levels over after dying. Makes playing retro games less "hardcore" I guess but it's bad enough we have to endure the oldschool mechanics, this way we can still experience the games instead of getting disinterested. I already finished Wild Arms and Syphon Filter.
 

Black_Stride

do not tempt fate do not contrain Wonder Woman's thighs do not do not
Insta defeat low level enemies in Earthbound overworld without ever entering the battle screen.
This is one of my favorite features in RPGs.
If an enemy is weak enough let me just bump into them and they die without me needing to actually enter the battle screen.


Fantasian
also has a sorta evolution of this feature where instead of battling enemies you pokeball them and when you have filled your pokeball you can battle all of them in one battle.
 

cireza

Member
Having the weapon seller in a JRPG letting you equip the new weapon and offering to buy the previous one.
Having the weapon seller in JRPG showing you who can actually equip the weapon, and what stats gains are.

Yeah, it looks trivial, but a ton of 16 bits games don't have any of this. So I was very pleasantly surprised when I was that Moldorian, a 8 bits RPG on the Game Gear, actually had all of this.
 
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CitizenZ

Banned
Basically everything that was once wanted has now become the norm and if it it is excluded its a failure from devs. They all have originated from mods, unlimited inventory, sliders for difficulty of enemies types, pinging larger areas, etc.

The two most that come to mind where I said, finally, One was Crysis 2 breaking down each area with the number of collectibles and secrets. The second and probably most important is The Forest. From the main menu you can play however you want, with mods, no mods, no enemies, build only mode, etc. AND the achievements actually challenged you to play through the game in a certain way. Thats why it is still very popular today and why i called it the best choose your own adventure game ever.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
I dont remember how many CODs have this feature among the 15+ games there are, but I think MW2 started it (maybe it was Black Ops 1?), where you could choose an option for the game to default booting up right away to the MP lobby.
 
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T4keD0wN

Neo Member
Hold button/press once instead of repeatedly pressing your keyboard for 10 seconds like a maniac and waking up half of the neighborhood in the process is the best one because it saves you a hospital trip and a finger surgery.
Mark to not sell is cool too.
 

Fredrik

Gold Member
Many games use it but I’m so thankful everytime it can be done, without hurdles.

Fast travel.

Teleporting to space station and freighter instead of the seamless flight in No Man’s Sky is so great, unfortunately you have to build the teleporter in your base first. And in RDR2 you have to unlock fast travel on your wagon. In God of War you unlock it after several hours.
No hurdles please, devs. Don’t deliberately make me sigh.

Dismantle junk automatically in Cyberpunk 2077, simple feature but great.

Instantly unmount and make the horse disappear where you stand in Elden Ring. Brilliant.

Gyro aiming on the fly when needed in BOTW instead of only using sticks or having to go into a menu to activate it. Awesome.

Pause. What is it with FROM and not allowing you to pause? Seriously, what’s the deal? It’s such a basic thing.

Saving. Just so I don’t have to replay the same area over and over if I mess up. I don’t have unlimited time. Not going to slam any specific game, rather a whole genre. Roguelike, I absolutely hate it.
 
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Fredrik

Gold Member
I wish there would be one QoL that nobody seems to be doing. No holding buttons to run. Just use the damn analog stick. Fully engaged - run.
Good one!
It seems so obvious, and it’s so easy to implement. Move the stick a little, walk slowly. A bit more, jog. Max, sprint.
I think the sprint mechanic is coming from Super Mario Bros, first time I tried it at least. Worked great there but we have analog controls now.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
I wish there would be one QoL that nobody seems to be doing. No holding buttons to run. Just use the damn analog stick. Fully engaged - run.

On PC side of things I wish using mouse scroll wheel to control walking speed would be used more often.
Good one!
It seems so obvious, and it’s so easy to implement. Move the stick a little, walk slowly. A bit more, jog. Max, sprint.
I think the sprint mechanic is coming from Super Mario Bros, first time I tried it at least. Worked great there but we have analog controls now.
The problem with that is a lot of gamers are used to using LS and RS as all or nothing controls. Asking people to nudge the sticks a bit or holding it halfway as walk, and all the way for run is asking a lot for some gamers.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
That’s why it would be an option. How often do you walk in games anyway. 99% of the time you’re running at full speed.
Options are good. A default toggle being walk or run makes sense.

But I'm sure you'd get flak from a portion of the gaming population saying thats not fair because they arent smart enough to check the options screen to pick the optimal toggle. They would be in default walk mode, you'd be in default run mode and he'd be pissed by other gamers who run more smoothly instead of herky jerking walking/running.

Instead of checking out the options, he'd just be pissed and drop the game.

It's like POV slider. For me, I dont care I play on default POV and do well enough to enjoy shooters. But I dont doubt anyone saying if you adjust the slider out it's better as you can see more game screen.

I'm sure there are pissed gamers who'd do better if they adjusted the cam. But I bet most gamers just leave it on default POV. I bet many casual gamers dont even know in some games you can even adjust the POV. They might not even know what that option is and ignore it anyway.
 
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Fredrik

Gold Member
The problem with that is a lot of gamers are used to using LS and RS as all or nothing controls. Asking people to nudge the sticks a bit or holding it halfway as walk, and all the way for run is asking a lot for some gamers.
Then I think it’s about time to learn that we actually have analog controllers now. But I know what you mean, I’ve seen people play racing games by tapping the stick to the sides in curves lol
 

SJRB

Gold Member
Quicksave feature in a console game is something I always appreciate.

I'm playing Cyberpunk 2077 on PS5 and all you have to do to quicksave is go to the menu and press triangle, the save is instant and you're back in action. Literally takes less than three seconds.
 
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- Auto-attack + speed up in turn-based combat
- Speed up mode for running
- Save anywhere or frequent save points
- Fast travel in vast games
- Restart a battle right after you lose
- Equip weapons and armor right after buying them
- Quest logs
- You can pause a cutscene
- You can skip a cutscene
- You can rewatch a cutscene (insert pleased McMahon meme)
- Dialogue log (essential in visual novels)

This is one of my favorite features in RPGs.
If an enemy is weak enough let me just bump into them and they die without me needing to actually enter the battle screen.


Fantasian also has a sorta evolution of this feature where instead of battling enemies you pokeball them and when you have filled your pokeball you can battle all of them in one battle.
Fantasian did a lot of great things. Fighting 20 or 30 mobs in one battle is a lot more enjoyable and time-efficient than fighting them in separate battles. You can explore an area for a good amount of time unhindered before you go into battle. I want to see more RPGs do this.

There is even a memorable battle where you fight 100 enemies and it was so exciting and thrilling. Hard yet satisfying. This game has excellently designed battles overall.
 

AndrewRyan

Member
Settings that show a brief description for each option. Bonus for describing what it does and not just 'change <feature name>'

More of a hardware QoL but the option to save the games state so you can jump right back into it directly without loading the game, checking DLC, then loading the save.

Offer a 'Quit to Desktop' feature from the in-game pause menu.

Provide a digital game manual. Bonus if you can read it from the pause menu.

Always allow remapping of the controls.

Show a diagram of the controller with its functions on the controller settings screen.

Don't ever show a launcher screen. The first time is okay if you can select the option to never see it again.

Racing games should always include a rewind feature for single players.

If I ever restart a level or checkpoint, do so with as little delay as possible.

When starting up a game, no need to see the logos for all the engine libraries you used. At least let us skip them if you must show them contractually.
 
Too much QoL is a good indication of a poorly designed game, the struggle is a key part of the experience.

Excessive QoL changes in one direction is what transformed WoW from a special game into radioactive garbage.

The ultimate QoL feature is to skip the game entirely, it's peak convenience.

Being able to pause the game. Yes I'm talking to you Miyazaki.
Great example of how a series of games with very little concern for convenience produced some of the best games in the past 15 years.
 
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