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  #11  
Old 01-23-2012, 01:04 AM
Taokan Taokan is offline
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Love the idea, have you considered a full out NPC faction sort of like AI War, that would grow stronger as the game progressed and force a sort of endgame upon the game?
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  #12  
Old 01-23-2012, 10:24 PM
udm udm is offline
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One thing I didn't like about Din's Curse was that, in spite of the dynamism of the game's world, it was far too random, and problems that arise are too abrupt. While it creates a "panic timer", I never got a real sense of graduation. Ultimately I felt very detached from the game.

As an analogous comparison, enemies from 4X games keep me on my toes, because I know with certainty that there is no randomness involved on their part. Their behaviour and actions have a certain predictability and consistency. You will hear from them quite often, and you will be able to observe their movements. There's no plot device abruptly appearing in the form of some text to propel you to run in the perpendicular direction. You always get a sense that the universe is perpetually in some form of activity.

I suppose it's likelier to get detached from DC too because it's really difficult to see the events in motion when the town-dungeon structure is vertically linear and you don't actually visualize the world's structural mobility. Hopefully it will be easier to fuse the visual with the dynamism in Drox Operative :P
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  #13  
Old 01-23-2012, 10:38 PM
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Castruccio Castruccio is offline
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Originally Posted by Taokan View Post
Love the idea, have you considered a full out NPC faction sort of like AI War, that would grow stronger as the game progressed and force a sort of endgame upon the game?
This would be a really awesome option, even if it were an option that the user had to enable himself before he took on a new part of the galaxy (like the options before you create a new town in DC).
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  #14  
Old 01-24-2012, 08:47 AM
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Love the idea, have you considered a full out NPC faction sort of like AI War, that would grow stronger as the game progressed and force a sort of endgame upon the game?
Do you mean like the game AI war or just like like AI taking over and causing problems like Terminator?
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  #15  
Old 01-24-2012, 10:03 AM
Bluddy Bluddy is offline
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Originally Posted by udm View Post
One thing I didn't like about Din's Curse was that, in spite of the dynamism of the game's world, it was far too random, and problems that arise are too abrupt. While it creates a "panic timer", I never got a real sense of graduation. Ultimately I felt very detached from the game.

As an analogous comparison, enemies from 4X games keep me on my toes, because I know with certainty that there is no randomness involved on their part. Their behaviour and actions have a certain predictability and consistency. You will hear from them quite often, and you will be able to observe their movements. There's no plot device abruptly appearing in the form of some text to propel you to run in the perpendicular direction. You always get a sense that the universe is perpetually in some form of activity.

I suppose it's likelier to get detached from DC too because it's really difficult to see the events in motion when the town-dungeon structure is vertically linear and you don't actually visualize the world's structural mobility. Hopefully it will be easier to fuse the visual with the dynamism in Drox Operative :P
You raise good points udm, and I've had similar thoughts about DC though I happen to really like the system.

The first point is that DC is not a strategy game, and is lacking somewhat in that regard. The focus is not on matching wits with the boss of the dungeon, but on experiencing the events the dungeon throws at you semi-randomly. But I see this as both a pro and a con. The con is that your opponent in the dungeon isn't progressing gradually as much as making big, random steps (albeit logical steps). You can't push back against the boss strategically, thereby weakening his grip on the dungeon. Many strategic options are thus eliminated from the game. The pro side is that had DC been a strategy game, it would have suffered from huge exploits and strategic balance issues, which are incredibly hard to solve. All strategy games ultimately suffer from brain-dead AI which is simply the industry standard. Just as the covenants in DC can be manipulated rather easily, DC would have suffered from the maladies that plague strategy games.

Something that's really nice about Drox and I hope will help make the game less exploitable, is that the strategy is orthogonal to your actions. You're not competing against the different races -- the other races are. This should decrease the number of exploits in the game.

The second problem is one of presentation, and I agree that DC didn't really have a good way to present the situation. You couldn't tell which factions were in the dungeon and what their attitudes were. Then again, any dungeon with a number of factions that could be presented in a diagram wouldn't be particularly interesting, unless you redefine monster factions to lump together different species. Hopefully Drox will remedy that -- DoP did a pretty good job of presenting your standing, both current and historical, vis a vis the other covenants.
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  #16  
Old 01-24-2012, 11:42 AM
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Do you mean like the game AI war or just like like AI taking over and causing problems like Terminator?
I have in mind some sort of meter (like the AI progress meter in AI War) that shows you how your actions are gradually upsetting the AI races and causing them to target you in a more focused and intense manner.

There would be a finite amount of damage you could do to any given race before that race unleashed all of its fury on you. There would be a numerical meter representing a given race's feelings toward you (say 1-100) and once you crossed the 100 threshold with a given race then that race would send huge waves of enemies after you no matter where you were in the galaxy.

A countdown timer would also start once you crossed the 100 threshold that would let you know how many minutes you had until the AI waves arrived at your location (this would give you time to prepare). Perhaps you could have something like 3 minutes from the time you cross the threshold.
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  #17  
Old 01-24-2012, 03:02 PM
Taokan Taokan is offline
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Do you mean like the game AI war or just like like AI taking over and causing problems like Terminator?
The former - maybe something like a hybrid between AI War (where it progressively got stronger as you destroyed it's infrastructure) and the Antarans from MOO2 (which provided an alternate win condition to conquering every last star your opponents controlled).
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  #18  
Old 01-25-2012, 03:18 PM
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The former - maybe something like a hybrid between AI War (where it progressively got stronger as you destroyed it's infrastructure) and the Antarans from MOO2 (which provided an alternate win condition to conquering every last star your opponents controlled).
The normal races do get stronger and stronger over the course of a game and new subraces or rebels can pop up.
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  #19  
Old 01-25-2012, 10:39 PM
udm udm is offline
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Originally Posted by Bluddy View Post
You raise good points udm, and I've had similar thoughts about DC though I happen to really like the system.

The first point is that DC is not a strategy game, and is lacking somewhat in that regard. The focus is not on matching wits with the boss of the dungeon, but on experiencing the events the dungeon throws at you semi-randomly. But I see this as both a pro and a con. The con is that your opponent in the dungeon isn't progressing gradually as much as making big, random steps (albeit logical steps). You can't push back against the boss strategically, thereby weakening his grip on the dungeon. Many strategic options are thus eliminated from the game. The pro side is that had DC been a strategy game, it would have suffered from huge exploits and strategic balance issues, which are incredibly hard to solve. All strategy games ultimately suffer from brain-dead AI which is simply the industry standard. Just as the covenants in DC can be manipulated rather easily, DC would have suffered from the maladies that plague strategy games.

Something that's really nice about Drox and I hope will help make the game less exploitable, is that the strategy is orthogonal to your actions. You're not competing against the different races -- the other races are. This should decrease the number of exploits in the game.

The second problem is one of presentation, and I agree that DC didn't really have a good way to present the situation. You couldn't tell which factions were in the dungeon and what their attitudes were. Then again, any dungeon with a number of factions that could be presented in a diagram wouldn't be particularly interesting, unless you redefine monster factions to lump together different species. Hopefully Drox will remedy that -- DoP did a pretty good job of presenting your standing, both current and historical, vis a vis the other covenants.
Yep. There were definitely good ideas in DC, but I didn't really start to see their flaws until I played multiplayer with a friend, and halfway through he asked me whether there was any real point to the dynamic nature of the game. In spite of the fact that there are choices and consequences, they still felt weak and tacked on. Rather than feel like a part of the world you're in, it felt like you were being led on by the nose and given just another excuse to go kill more stuff. The control that you're supposed to have, to be able to stop Event B from happening by putting a cork in Event A, doesn't feel particularly gratifying when you've played up till a certain point. In other words, the motivation is no longer to be involved in the game's settings, but just to go kill more stuff, and cleanse and repeat - and we know that's not supposed to be the game's strongest point.
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  #20  
Old 01-26-2012, 01:28 AM
Taokan Taokan is offline
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Originally Posted by udm View Post
In spite of the fact that there are choices and consequences, they still felt weak and tacked on. Rather than feel like a part of the world you're in, it felt like you were being led on by the nose and given just another excuse to go kill more stuff.
Recent purchaser of Din's Curse myself (found Depths of Peril on Steam, but decided on Din's for the multiplayer), and I have similar sentiments. It hits the right spots from a hack n slash point of view, but it would have been more gratifying and emerging if the town behaved a little more like a simulation and less like a quest hub, such that townfolk contributed to resource collection and further advancement of the town rather than simply providing fodder for invasions and occasional sidequests.

I've longed for a game that's the reverse of Majesty: give me direct control of a hero and indirect influence over an AI managed growing city. To my knowledge there's really nothing quite like that on the market. Drox Operative looks like a very interesting project because it just might hit that sweet spot, albeit in a space setting rather than a fantasy one.
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