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  #21  
Old 10-04-2007, 07:42 PM
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Delilah Rehm Delilah Rehm is offline
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If you are role playing, the townspeople have a past, fears, hatred, love... and some surprises. They also give you tips. The drama that plays out leads to certain revelations about the townspeople themselves.

Again, you don't have to get to know the townspeople to enjoy the game, but it's there for any who want it.
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  #22  
Old 02-27-2008, 11:14 AM
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Well, I have used the skill point swapping with my current Priest character. When I got close to having enough points to get Mail mastery(?), I did so by removing points from another skill.

Which explains why I am broke..........

Plus you can use the skill point change as RP opportunities as well.

For example, I lower precision to get Mail mastery, which means now I can use Mail, but I'm just not quite used to doing so, hence, I'm not quite as good at fighting in it yet. Next level I increase precision, reflecting my comfort level in mail armor.

Last edited by tuberski : 02-27-2008 at 11:25 AM.
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  #23  
Old 02-28-2008, 01:54 AM
Bagheera Bagheera is offline
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Originally Posted by Delilah Rehm View Post
One of the hard things in making a game is to make it appealing to as many players (rpgers in this case) as possible. Well.... that's even harder than it seems. At first, you couldn't refit skills at all. The ability to remove skills with a cash cost was added to broaden the appeal. Some don't want it. Some want it with no cost. Most seem to like this ability as it is. It's one of those cases where you can't make everyone happy no matter what you do. I hope everyone can enjoy the game even if it isn't exactly what they would choose in design.
Mind you, I've only played this game a little bit, so I'm running off my initial impression that it feels like a combination of World of Warcraft offline and Master of Orion, and to a lesser extent the whole RPG genre (of which I would reference Diablo 2 and Fallout)

So I would refer to those to see how they approached a similar problem of character identity vs allowing the player to choose their own game. Diablo allows a player to select hardcore or not (which would be an interesting and easy enough inclusion to the game), but it must be selected when the character is created, and no intermingling between hardcore and normal games are allowed (not relevant at present, but it would be relevant if multiplayer is added)

MOO and Fallout have a similar, but more detailed, approach... a selection of perks and flaws. (of which Tropico also made use, a system which I adored.) WoW also allowed a certain character inertia to be built by selection of race independent of class (ok, so this is nothing new to RPG's, but its bears mentioning)

So how would I approach this ?

adding a system of perks and flaws which are selected upon character creation and CANNOT be reset.

So you have players that want to plan their character in advance, they can select a "stubborn as a mule" flaw and not be able to reset their skills.... ever... and be allowed to choose a perk/benefit as reward for handicapping themself.

Got players that want to reset their skills for free or on the fly ? Toss them the ability to select "Indecisive Waffle" as a benefit, but then they'll have to choose a penalty to offset it.

I certainly feel that the implementation of races or some sort of ethnic backgrounds appropriate to the story would be an asset to the game, but if that is decided against (for art reasons, design, whatever) they could be snuck in as perks/flaws in a similar manner... faeblood, trollblood, royal ancestry.... whatever...

I'd also like to see a more structured skilltree with greater emphasis on prerequisite skills, level requirements, attributes and such... instead of simply throwing everything at the player right at the start and such.

If this is done thoroughly, it would certainly be expansion/sequel material.

(i'd also like to see greater emphasis placed on covenant creation and development, but thats a whole different discussion)
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  #24  
Old 02-28-2008, 05:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
Diablo allows a player to select hardcore or not (which would be an interesting and easy enough inclusion to the game)
Depths of Peril also features a hardcore mode. You need to have one softcore character of at least level 25 in your playing roster to activate it.
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  #25  
Old 02-28-2008, 05:39 AM
Delve Delve is offline
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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
Mind you, I've only played this game a little bit, so I'm running off my initial impression that it feels like a combination of World of Warcraft offline and Master of Orion, and to a lesser extent the whole RPG genre (of which I would reference Diablo 2 and Fallout)
Master of Orion? That's a completely different genre at almost polar opposite ends of the spectrum. I see almost no correlaries between the two, what do you mean?

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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
So I would refer to those to see how they approached a similar problem of character identity vs allowing the player to choose their own game. Diablo allows a player to select hardcore or not (which would be an interesting and easy enough inclusion to the game), but it must be selected when the character is created, and no intermingling between hardcore and normal games are allowed (not relevant at present, but it would be relevant if multiplayer is added)
Hardcore was added in a recent patch (1.008 I believe) and a loner option was added as well, which prevents the use of recruits. Both are selected at character creation and cannot be changed once confirmed.

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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
MOO and Fallout have a similar, but more detailed, approach... a selection of perks and flaws. (of which Tropico also made use, a system which I adored.) WoW also allowed a certain character inertia to be built by selection of race independent of class (ok, so this is nothing new to RPG's, but its bears mentioning)
Fallout is the epitome of role based CRPGs in my opinion. I haven't seen a randomized CRPG that I'm willing to say that for, but I prefer games with more emphasis on the RP part of CRPG.

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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
adding a system of perks and flaws which are selected upon character creation and CANNOT be reset.
That's certainly a promising avenue to consider, though it would could change the entire gameplay experience. This would be a handy way to squeak in the covenant traits that everyone seems to want.

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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
I certainly feel that the implementation of races or some sort of ethnic backgrounds appropriate to the story would be an asset to the game, but if that is decided against (for art reasons, design, whatever) they could be snuck in as perks/flaws in a similar manner... faeblood, trollblood, royal ancestry.... whatever...
Eh, we're barbarians. Everyone else was too sane to stay, yeah? There could always be some tribal differences, but I think the homogenous feel of the NPCs lends more impact to the 'last bastion of light' background.

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I'd also like to see a more structured skilltree with greater emphasis on prerequisite skills, level requirements, attributes and such... instead of simply throwing everything at the player right at the start and such.
To the contrary, the option of grabbing whatever you want at any level you want is part of the fun. Though adding a weak system of requirements isn't a terribly bad idea. I'm thinking along the lines of requiring Cold Mastery at level 1 prior to learning Frost Nova, perhaps maintaining a 1/3 ratio between certain related skills, nothing terribly onerous. The problem with that is then it becomes exponentially more complicated and difficult to try and retool your skills if you decide you'd rather play with fire than ice. It would also tend to force players to spread skill points out further to some extent, though that's not necessarily a bad thing.

If it's done with a delicate touch though it could enhance the player's feeling of ownership of their character, whereas right now the only thing you can't completely change about your character are the stats and name. And the more I think about it, raising a barrier to massive and complete skill redistribution is worth considering as long as it doesn't significantly impact the ability to play around with a couple levels worth of skill points.
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  #26  
Old 02-28-2008, 02:52 PM
Bagheera Bagheera is offline
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Originally Posted by Delve View Post
Master of Orion? That's a completely different genre at almost polar opposite ends of the spectrum. I see almost no correlaries between the two, what do you mean?
mainly the player's interaction with the other computer players and multiple victory conditions. unlike most games where the computer is simply a rival that MAY accept your trade offers, they actively seek out trade offers and have a degree of individuality (granted, this may be more akin to civilization), but the whole diplomacy screen is very akin to MOO, not the least of which is the manner in which traderoutes operate.

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Hardcore was added in a recent patch (1.008 I believe) and a loner option was added as well, which prevents the use of recruits. Both are selected at character creation and cannot be changed once confirmed.
ah, thats cool, i THOUGHT i had read about them, but I havent reached level 25 yet... so *shrug*, guess thats why.

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Fallout is the epitome of role based CRPGs in my opinion. I haven't seen a randomized CRPG that I'm willing to say that for, but I prefer games with more emphasis on the RP part of CRPG.
Black Isle really made the RPG scene come back alive. Too bad the perk/flaw system of Fallout2 didnt survive for long.

Quote:
That's certainly a promising avenue to consider, though it would could change the entire gameplay experience. This would be a handy way to squeak in the covenant traits that everyone seems to want.
yeah, I appreciate that their current role is to differentiate the computer opponents from each other, and they do a great job at that.... but it feels kinda fake to me when the computer players have access to something not replicated for human players.

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Eh, we're barbarians. Everyone else was too sane to stay, yeah? There could always be some tribal differences, but I think the homogenous feel of the NPCs lends more impact to the 'last bastion of light' background.
feels akin to diablo2's setting, imo. granted, these are more desperate straights... but even still, there could be other bastions of resistance and survival out there... and i'm not all that comfortable calling the barbarians 'bastions of light'... they are slaughtering each other while trying to survive, ya know ? =)

Quote:
If it's done with a delicate touch though it could enhance the player's feeling of ownership of their character, whereas right now the only thing you can't completely change about your character are the stats and name. And the more I think about it, raising a barrier to massive and complete skill redistribution is worth considering as long as it doesn't significantly impact the ability to play around with a couple levels worth of skill points.
without some requirements, gaining a level loses a lot of its luster and turns into just a couple new points instead of "only one more level and get a shiny new attack !"

as you mentioned, the only real permanence to the character at present is their class and their name... everything else can be changed as needed or desired... which doesnt really contribute to connecting the player with their character on a memorable basis.
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  #27  
Old 02-28-2008, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
Black Isle really made the RPG scene come back alive. Too bad the perk/flaw system of Fallout2 didnt survive for long.
Well, I heard it will make an appearence in Fallout 3, so its not dead yet. I am cautiously optimistic I won't be totally disappointed in this one.
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  #28  
Old 02-28-2008, 06:41 PM
Delve Delve is offline
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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
yeah, I appreciate that their current role is to differentiate the computer opponents from each other, and they do a great job at that.... but it feels kinda fake to me when the computer players have access to something not replicated for human players.
I agree that it's awkward, but the effects aren't very large. I don't think have player covenant traits would enhance my enjoyment of the game much, if at all. Some form of covenant advancement might give me some interesting milestones to aim for, if done well, but overall I'm not sure the benefit would outweigh the cost. I'd rather they concentrate on the next game so I can see what other ideas are bubbling around Soldak HQ.

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without some requirements, gaining a level loses a lot of its luster and turns into just a couple new points instead of "only one more level and get a shiny new attack !"
I respectfully disagree. I never thought the traditional system of leveling very friendly. It's not remotely realistic and often doesn't allow much grey space for difficulty ramping.

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as you mentioned, the only real permanence to the character at present is their class and their name... everything else can be changed as needed or desired... which doesnt really contribute to connecting the player with their character on a memorable basis.
The stats are permanent. And vitally important. However, it's not enough to make me feel like I'm 'building' my character rather than 'allocating' skills on some generic scorechart. The current system also fails on some level to encourage people to start new characters to try out different configurations of abilities. I've got 4 characters (and one hardcore, and I'll probably start a loner, more for testing than any other reason) and don't see any reason to start another. Perhaps when they're all nearing level 100 I'll change my tune.
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  #29  
Old 02-28-2008, 11:44 PM
Bagheera Bagheera is offline
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Well, I heard it will make an appearence in Fallout 3, so its not dead yet. I am cautiously optimistic I won't be totally disappointed in this one.
without black isle, i hold little hope for it.

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Originally Posted by Delve View Post
I agree that it's awkward, but the effects aren't very large. I don't think have player covenant traits would enhance my enjoyment of the game much, if at all. Some form of covenant advancement might give me some interesting milestones to aim for, if done well, but overall I'm not sure the benefit would outweigh the cost. I'd rather they concentrate on the next game so I can see what other ideas are bubbling around Soldak HQ.
honestly, i dont expect these kind of major changes from anything less then an expansion or a sequel.


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I respectfully disagree. I never thought the traditional system of leveling very friendly. It's not remotely realistic and often doesn't allow much grey space for difficulty ramping.
i'm not sure what you're saying here. are you saying you prefer the current form of levelling or dislike it ? because imo, the current form is as traditional as it gets... ie.. gain a level... gain some statpoints and a skillpoint... thats ripped straight out of diablo and pretty much every online grindfest since even before the internet.

Quote:
The stats are permanent. And vitally important. However, it's not enough to make me feel like I'm 'building' my character rather than 'allocating' skills on some generic scorechart.
likewise... and the stats are something you develop over time... whereas as far as 'initial character choices' go... a mage is a mage is a mage.

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The current system also fails on some level to encourage people to start new characters to try out different configurations of abilities.
thats a twoedged coin... 'character development' in the game, is pretty mediocre... even if i were encouraged to make new characters to try different builds, it wouldnt make it any more fun. fallout 2, now there was a game where character development was... FUN... and even if the game had strictly forbidden me from creating different characters, i would have simply deleted my old ones and found a way to create a new one simply to have more fun.

so basically... starting new characters isnt fun in and of itself.... creating and developing the character needs to be fun first, the rest will come... and as you said... all there is to making a character right now is selecting a class and adding a digit or two to your strength or whatnot as you level.... seems more like accounting then playing.

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I've got 4 characters (and one hardcore, and I'll probably start a loner, more for testing than any other reason) and don't see any reason to start another. Perhaps when they're all nearing level 100 I'll change my tune.
i have 2... mostly because i changed my mind about my first choice of class, and not so much because i wanted to 'try anything new'.

i might try hardcore if/when i reach that level... but i dunno about loner... it doesnt really appeal to me any more then grinding in a real mmorpg solo does.
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  #30  
Old 02-29-2008, 06:47 AM
Delve Delve is offline
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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
i'm not sure what you're saying here. are you saying you prefer the current form of levelling or dislike it ? because imo, the current form is as traditional as it gets... ie.. gain a level... gain some statpoints and a skillpoint... thats ripped straight out of diablo and pretty much every online grindfest since even before the internet.
The 'traditional' form of level gain, for my definition at least, is the classic D&D 'gain a level and suddenly you are god and need to find a bigger challenge'. In short, you grind along at approximately the same level of strength until suddenly, POOF, everything becomes impossible to miss, nothing can hit you, and your spells all cause instant death (or might as well).

Yes, there's room for difficulty ramping in the encounter composition, but once your player gains a level you either have to overwhelm them with numbers or go to a higher level monster to get any challenge out of it. In short, a wolf shouldn't suddenly turn into the challenge equivelant of a mouse, which is what large gain levelling systems cause. DoP (among many others) manages to avoid this in that each level is pretty short and is a minor bonus that adds up over time. There are also systems that involve leveling a particular skill based on use, where 'character level' is more a function of overall stats rather than a driver of the stats. Those can also work well. My view of 'traditional level gains' may be rather skewed by my game history, of course.


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likewise... and the stats are something you develop over time... whereas as far as 'initial character choices' go... a mage is a mage is a mage.
Yes? The stats are also the driver for how your character functions. Some classes really have no choice (a mage really is just a mage), but others, like the warrior and priest and maybe the rogue, have some build options that evidence themselves when you apply your stats appropriately. A warrior can be built for pure damage output or defensive skill. Or a mix. A priest can be built for casting or melee (to some extent with the same options as the warrior in the melee department). Some builds work better than others, but if you've doled out your stats to be a melee priest and suddenly decide you want to try a pure casting role then you're in for a rough time because your spirit isn't going to be up to snuff.

No, this isn't defined at character creation. That's actually beneficial, you can to some extent change course early on if you find that what you're doing isn't working. Even so, I adored the Fallout system as well, so take that how you like.

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thats a twoedged coin... 'character development' in the game, is pretty mediocre... even if i were encouraged to make new characters to try different builds, it wouldnt make it any more fun. fallout 2, now there was a game where character development was... FUN... and even if the game had strictly forbidden me from creating different characters, i would have simply deleted my old ones and found a way to create a new one simply to have more fun.
Starting new characters doesn't have to be fun if actually playing them and building them up is fun. You should (I hope) be spending much more time playing the character than building it. So which aspect should be more fun?

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Originally Posted by Bagheera View Post
so basically... starting new characters isnt fun in and of itself.... creating and developing the character needs to be fun first, the rest will come... and as you said... all there is to making a character right now is selecting a class and adding a digit or two to your strength or whatnot as you level.... seems more like accounting then playing.
If you want to talk about accounting I'll let my wife post. Assigning stats and skills at level up is no different from doing it at character creation, it's just spread out. You make the exact same calculations in both schemes, but if it's all done up front and becomes static then the player can be punished if it's not done coherently. Also, I suspect a large proportion of people would be put off by the 10 minute character creation process with all the widgets and numbers that Fallout uses. Large up front investments of time and energy before you even get to play the game isn't the way a lot of people think.

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i might try hardcore if/when i reach that level... but i dunno about loner... it doesnt really appeal to me any more then grinding in a real mmorpg solo does.
DoP is not a MMORPG. I don't believe it even wants to be. It's a synthesis of Diablo and Civilization, not Everquest and WoW.


And by the way. Stop mentioning Fallout! I don't have time to go find the disk, which is what I'm going to have to do if you keep making me want to play it.
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