TI4 is in 6 months time, and I think now would be a good time to improve Spectating. After TI3, we had more additions, such as runes visible on the mini-map for spectators, but I think there are still some more things to go. I’ve seen a bunch of ideas, such as Net Worth oriented things, but this one I haven’t seen before, and would like to see it implemented. It runs off one basic principle:
Use More Quick Reference Tools
There’s diamonds under ever hero portrait, to denote the current status of their ultimate.
This is what I call a quick reference tool. As a spectator you can quickly look at it, and very quickly get a load of information; Windrunner’s ultimate is on cooldown, Silencer is off cooldown but out of mana, etc etc You don’t need the caster to click on the hero, you can just look it and fight out. Quick Reference Tools are great when spectating the game, and amazing when you’re watching in outside of the client, such as through Twitch.
I suggest they add 4 more quick reference guides. The first two are on the hero portraits: one to the left, and one to the right of the current one. I don’t care if these are also added to the main game for your teammates – that’s an area that results in a lot of arguing/balance blah blah – but I would at least like to see them added to spectating. It really wouldn’t look that bad either, it would look fairly nice and clean.
Circle (left) – Buyback Status
A circle is to the left of the diamond. If the circle (coin) is yellow, then the player has money for buyback. If the coin is black, their buyback is on cooldown, if the coin is red, then they have no money for a buyback. You can change the colors around if you want, but the idea still remains. A quick reference guide to see the current buyback status. You don’t need the caster to switch to the buyback tab, you can just quickly look at it, and it tells you, at any point in the game. You can see at the end of a Hectic team-fight, how many buybacks are on Cooldown (and thus were used during that fight), or you can see during a fight if someone has buyback when they die while the caster is busy screaming about something else.
Triangle (right) – Recent Death
A triangle is to the right of the diamond. If the triangle is red, then the player has died within the last 4 minutes. If the triangle is green, then he hasn’t.
It may seem a bit silly on the surface, but after long epic bouts of action, casters say something similar to “how many people died in the end? was that like a 3 for 4?” You can look at the triangles to see how many people died in the recent fight. It’s all just about making things easier to do, and faster to find out. This will become useful, just because it’s something that you generally want to know, and don’t want to scour around to find out. This is especially handy in the early game where people re-spawn quickly, when there’s action on multiple places at once. It’s much easier to have a quick reference guide like this.
Gold and XP Bubbles
My third and fourth ones should be somewhere else, perhaps under the notches to denote the results of a series, there should be 3 circle/spheres (coins), and 3 squares (or Xs or something). Basically 3 on one side, and three on the other. The spheres denote gold advantage. Each sphere represents 3k gold. So if the Radiant team is ahead by 7.5k gold, then 2 spheres are green (green denotes radiant), and 1 sphere is black. If Dire is ahead in XP by 15k, then the 3 squares are all red. It’s another quick reference tool, in this case to quickly see the gold and experience advantage each team has. You don’t need the caster to open a graph, the current rough gold/XP advantage is just always displayed.
Now the exact colors or shapes don’t have to be used, but the core idea is what I’m trying to get across. Add 4 more quick reference tools for XP Advantage, Gold Advantage, Buyback Status, and Recent Death. I spectate a lot of games outside of the client, and find that there are areas that could have some additional features – to improve the viewing experience, and I think this idea should be implemented.
If anyone is fancy enough to make a Mock-Up of what it could look like, it would be greatly appreciated.