The main interface is clean and simple; at bottom of the screen are the hotkeys for skills, spells and items as well as bars to display health and mana. The minimap is in top left corner and the health bar for targeted enemy is at top and center of the screen. A small frame appears next to hotkeys when targeting to object that can be interacted with. Due the simplicity there is enough room to show the actual world, which is always a positive thing as long as the simplicity doesn't go too far and works properly. In case of Divinity 2 the simplicity works.
The game also has interfaces for inventory management, skills, quest logs and map. In addition the game also has dedicated interfaces for dialogue history as well as how many each type of enemies you have killed, both having only marginal use. The dialogue history is handy when you need to check out what someone actually said, especially in case of quests and puzzles. The dialogues are also listed by the time, which means it's sometimes a bit difficult to track down the correct dialogue if a bit more time has passed since.
The interface for map is perhaps one of the simplest I have seen in a long time, simplest working interface that is. Each map has three level of zoom, of which only closest and second closest were useful for me. The map marks the location of main quest objectives, but only if the objective is in that specific map or inside a location (dungeon, cave and so on) that can be reached from the current map only. Some of the important NPCs are also marked to map, though only if the NPC is not in friendly location like town and gives you at least one quest. The map also shows all the entrances to other locations, though only after you have learned the location by discovering it or through quest. Player can also add personal notes to map as well as highlight already existing marks. After highlighting something through the map interface the minimap shows the direction to it as well, making the navigation easier.
While the map interface is good, I still have few complains about it. First of all, only the map of current location can be seen. There is no way to change the map, even if the current location doesn't have one, which is the second complain. Certain locations don't have any kind of map. While this decision can be explained by the type of those locations, it's still somewhat annoying. Also, sometimes the maps are somewhat confusing and misleading, in one case even completely wrong. One part of the problem of inaccuracy is the absence of height; the map doesn't make any difference between the heights of locations. The map can show two passages crossing even though that doesn't happen; instead one passage runs bellow the other one. Finally, the zooming is a bit erratic; sometimes zooming out or in jumps to the other extremity instead of the second zoom level, sometimes the game just ignores the attempts to zooming.
Quest log is also clean and simple; one page for open quests and another one for closed quests. The list of quests is uses nested structure, the main list using the name of "parent" quests. Parent quest can consist of two or more child quests, which are listed under the parent quest. For example, hunting down all the criminal leaders can be considered as parent quest which consist of several child quest, each one being connected one specific criminal. The difference between parent and child quests is that the parent quest requires every child quests to be completed, if such exists, before it can be completed. In the example of criminal leaders, the parent quest can only be completed after all the criminal leaders have been killed. It's also important to remember that every child quest will result separate reward when completed, followed by better reward when the parent quest is completed. Let's say the previous example requires me to kill five different leaders. In terms of rewards that would mean five different rewards from five different leaders and one big reward after the last death has been reported.
Now that I have explained the quest hierarchy I can get back to the quest interface. First of all, the name of quest, parent or child, uses three different colors to indicate the state and type. The optional quests have white name, main quests have gold name and every quest ready to be turned in have green color. Each quest also contains a short description when collapsed and longer one when expanded.
The problem with quest log is that the scrollbar is a bit bugged; when the interface is opened the scrollbar doesn't work immediately and I had to expand one quest to make it work again. It feels like the game failed to recognize the fact that the list was already big enough to require scrolling.
The skill interface is another example of working simplicity; the skills have been grouped in columns based on the class it belongs to. The buttons to assign skill points appear bellow the skill icon, which requires at least one unassigned point and character meeting the level requirement. The description of selected skill appears at the bottom of the screen and it contains all the information needed; numerical stats, description of the effect, effects of current skill level, effects of next level and effects after the improvements granted by items are applied. There is even a short video for each skill showing what it does playing right next to description frame.
Finally, the inventory interface. The interface shows equipped items around the preview model, the content of inventory as well as all the basic information of the character; experience, health, mana, basic attributes, resistances and other modifiers. Each value displayed also has a tooltip describing the actual effect it causes as well as possible relations to other values. If the cursor is moved over an item, the tooltip shows the description of said item. In some cases the description can be one or two words long while the tooltip of equipment shows the numerical stats of said item. Also, if the item in question is in inventory and not equipped, the stats of equivalent equipped item is displayed as well. Finally, the changes to characteristics is also shown in the interface, making it easier to determine the changes if the item is equipped.
Basically, the inventory interface follows the rule of simplicity as well; only the necessary information is displayed. Unfortunately the interface doesn't work properly. First of all, the game fails to recognize certain actions; especially trying to insert a charm to items is difficult to do. The problem is that, when the player selects the option to insert charms from list of actions, the list of charms available doesn't always appear. Sometimes I had to open the list and click the option several times before the game decided to open the list.
Second problem is also related to inventory management. Several times I noticed that when I, for example, was selling items the game didn't sell the item I was clicking but another one instead. Usually this item was either right next or below the item I wanted to sell. While no real damage is caused when selling items since I can always buy them back at same price I sold, destroying items is completely another matter. Especially during the early parts of the game I came to situations where I had to destroy one or two items to make more room for the loot I wanted to pick up. It's no fun to realize that I just destroyed the ultimate weapon waiting for me to reach the level requirement instead of the generic weapon which had practically no sell value nor use.