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Level cap or no level cap?

Level cap

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65 replies to this topic

Poll: Level cap or no level cap? (281 member(s) have cast votes)

Do you prefer a level cap or no level cap?

  1. Level cap (example: KOTOR is 20, BG is 8million xp) (107 votes [38.08%])

    Percentage of vote: 38.08%

  2. No level cap (example: D&D Heroes never ending xp) (174 votes [61.92%])

    Percentage of vote: 61.92%

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#1
Cariannis

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I was just curious what would people prefer, a level cap or a game without a level cap. Dungeon and Dragons Heroes had no level cap but I can’t remember any other game that removed the level cap.
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#2
ogrezilla

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no artificial level cap. just don't have unlimited xp available. The only time I should stop getting XP is when there is nothing left for me to do.

Edited by ogrezilla, 05 October 2012 - 11:04 AM.

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#3
Jarmo

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No level cap that'd come up during the normal game, ie, I don't want to hit the cap 2/3 way through the plot,
but there's no reason to code in level features for 30 levels if the story ends when you're around level 10.
(just in case someone finds a leveling exploit or a good grinding spot with invisible lizards or something)

#4
rjshae

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Not having a level cap means more development costs. I'd be in favor of a temporary level cap that can be lifted as sequels become available.
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#5
ogrezilla

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Not having a level cap means more development costs. I'd be in favor of a temporary level cap that can be lifted as sequels become available.

how so? Assuming there is a finite amount of experience in the game.

#6
Amentep

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Don't care.

#7
Hypevosa

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Don't really want a cap - just don't have any additional features past a certain point that aren't level based.

For example a rogue's sneak damage dice are level dependent, it just stops getting special feats after level 20 in D&D.

#8
Radres

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i think it's easier to balance the game with a level cap. Plus it makes you think about the choices you will make when levelin your character up. It's a win win in my book.
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#9
rjshae

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Not having a level cap means more development costs. I'd be in favor of a temporary level cap that can be lifted as sequels become available.

how so? Assuming there is a finite amount of experience in the game.


What do you add to a game when there are higher level characters?

#10
Jaesun

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Don't care.

#11
ogrezilla

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Not having a level cap means more development costs. I'd be in favor of a temporary level cap that can be lifted as sequels become available.

how so? Assuming there is a finite amount of experience in the game.


What do you add to a game when there are higher level characters?

the finite experience still caps it, its just not an arbitrary number and you will never hit it before the end of the game.

#12
Death Machine Miyagi

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Level cap is only valuable if they plan on making a sequel you can import your character to. A BG1 level cap, for example, was important.

Where the level cap becomes irritating is when you hit it with quite a bit of gameplay left to go, even when doing a fairly normal playthrough. KOTOR, I'm looking at you.

#13
Elerond

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This is difficult question to answer as we don't know anything about what kind system game will use. In some system you can let characters gain levels endlessly, but in some systems this isn't just possible. And if sytem allows infinite level upping then comes to question game's balance, as can it endure such or will it broke.

But in end my opinion is that player should be able to level up until system cap or balance cap.

#14
Hypevosa

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Level cap is only valuable if they plan on making a sequel you can import your character to. A BG1 level cap, for example, was important.

Where the level cap becomes irritating is when you hit it with quite a bit of gameplay left to go, even when doing a fairly normal playthrough. KOTOR, I'm looking at you.


In D&D there is a way that levels can be permanently drained from your character by undead if you fail a save. I actually have a character, a Psion, who was originally made for the world's largest dungeon in 3.5 - and I transferred him to a new campaign by having him defend his sanctuary from an illithid assault that included enough necromantic mind flayers and their undead that he was overtaken in the assault and essentially drained back to level 1.

My point is that you can have in game reasons, lore and whatnot, for a player losing levels and being severely weakened. In BG2 Irenicus is experimenting the hell out of you and keeping you in a cage... I could easily see that as something that would explain alot of level and stat drain.

#15
EdPoe

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Not having a level cap means more development costs. I'd be in favor of a temporary level cap that can be lifted as sequels become available.


Agreed.

#16
Inannachan

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Personally I'm in two minds. Caps makes things easier for the devs to work with, but I also like open levelling too. Maybe soft caps would work in the game?

#17
IgnatiusDrake

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I certainly prefer no level cap, and no de facto level cap via limited total xp. I think it would be fine if levels after a certain point didn't offer unique abilities but scale patterned numerical abilities (as Hypevosa mentioned). I can already hear folks clamoring for a level cap because it will make the PC's overpowered. My response? Make it challenging to get those higher levels, make it take time. That way noone's delicate sensibilities will be offended by the game FORCING them *gasp* to level up more than they want. Heck, maybe have the level cap and random/resetting encounters be options that you can toggle in the game menu! Everyone wins!

#18
Super_Cat

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Level cap is only valuable if they plan on making a sequel you can import your character to. A BG1 level cap, for example, was important.

Where the level cap becomes irritating is when you hit it with quite a bit of gameplay left to go, even when doing a fairly normal playthrough. KOTOR, I'm looking at you.


Yeah if there is a hard level cap, it should be somewhat higher then you are expected to reach, so you can continue to gain levels throughout the game without hitting the level cap. Also leaves room for exansions.

#19
oldmanpaco

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Not having a level cap means more development costs. I'd be in favor of a temporary level cap that can be lifted as sequels become available.


Agreed.


Without a level cap you need to have your entire level progression codded into the game. i would prefer this to go the route of BG/BG2 with level advancement. Or rather maybe levels 1-15 in the first game and level 16-30 in the sequel.

#20
khango

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Probably there will have to be an invisible cap (max unsigned, or < max unsigned int squared if levels are stored apart from current experience) unless Obsidian feels like using arbitrary precision math (unlikely), but if the levelling intervals eventually reach a rate of growth where big omega of the experience required to reach the next level is in the c^n, or maybe even n^c class it would probably become moot. It should be possible to have an effective level cap mathematically without ever flat out limiting additional experience gain.

They can probably come up with some bounded equations to calculate the experience required for each level and eventually make the bounds grow so much faster than the available experience. It's not that complicated.

Let n be a particular level, then let m be the experience required for it. You can then define some basic algebraic intervals like below to smooth progression in normal gameplay:

n <= 5 : m = 1000 n^2 (Level at 1000, 4000, 9000, 16000, 25000 respectively)
5 < n <= 10 : m = 200 n^3 (43200, 68600, 102400, 145800, 200000)
10 < n <= 15 : m = 30 n^4 (439230, 622080, 856830, 1152480, 1518750)
15 < n <= 20 : m = 4 n^5 (4194304, 5679428, 7558272, 9904396, 12800000)
20 < n <= 25 : m = 0.5n^6 (42883060, 56689952, 74017944, 95551488, 122070312)
...
and at some point just start doing
30 < n : m= 2^n or similar...

Then scale experience gain at a lower order of increase and you diverge. Wa-la! Effective level cap without there being a hard cap.

Edited by khango, 18 October 2012 - 10:12 PM.

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