To me, the thing that exemplifies "work smarter, not harder" is the Fallout 3 train hat - instead of creating an entirely new system for a train, they just have an NPC wearing a hat which is an entire train, hidden under the floor and running very quickly.
It's absurd, and someone could have spent a lot of time and effort on a new system to get the the same result in a less absurd way. But this works, so why not?
So my new motto is, "don't be afraid to wear a train as a hat."
@matt the thing about these kinds of "smart" hacks is they need to be weighed in terms of how flaky they are. train hat may have saved a programmer the trouble of writing a proper system, but maybe the hack caused a lot of bugs that ended up needing equivalent programmer time to fix it. there's also the production axis, maybe the hack *does* suck but design bandwidth is plentiful while programming bandwidth is tight. it's all tradeoffs and true costs are often difficult to assess going in.
@radicalgraffiti AFAIK none of the Fallout games have functional vehicles. Fallout 3 didn't have *any* ground-based vehicles except for stationary bombed-out cars, the only moving conveyance was a helicopter, and I think it was just used in cutscenes. The train was added in a DLC pack.
@matt oh ok, i haven't got that far into the game
but i still doubt thats the easiest way to reuse the code
@OlivierSchyns I like the one in Daggerfall the best, because you can strafe, and imagining what a horse strafing looks like makes me smile
@matt this is great. But someone suggested a feminist speech on why this NPC is a female and I really would love to hear this speech.
@matt it is a very good thing to be adaptable and able to come up with a novel solution like this, but I've been too long in the computer mines to not cringe at the idea of a product manager saying 'well you got that to work by using a hat, why can't you do the same thing here?' and that's how we got epicycles to explain planetary movement. thank you for sharing this. As you can see I have "favorited" it, but I needed to vent a little as well.
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