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About yrm_dm

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    D&D - Graphic Design - Game Design
  1. From what I've read combat is pretty hard. One way for gamers to make combat easier is to gain some xtra XP from combat to get ahead of the curve. It was always fun in Baldur's Gate or whatnot to re-start the game with previously saved characters (or bring them in) and re-tackle the game for the second time with more powerful characters so you could reach the limits of power. One easy way around this problem, but still using quest EXP, would be to have several quests become available like... "bounty on X creatures" where simply killing that creature type and recovering it's ear, once you've read the wanted poster, would provide extra quest XP, in even a small amount in a way that doesn't tie you to an advancement speed limit heavily restricted by the game designer version of QUEST XP. If you can never break out of QUEST XP advancement limits, any quest you find too hard can't be easily circumvented unless there are thousands and thousands of easy side quests (like the X creature bounty) where you can level up and come back. I.e. There should be a way for gamers to "get ahead" of where they're supposed to be. This isn't a queue for an amusement park ride where everyone has to have the exact same experience waiting the exact same amount of time. Some of you guys SHOULD be able to have stronger characters and a better run than me, if you put in the research and effort and time. If someone else power-games better than I do, good for them. I'll watch their video and learn from their success. Quest XP - Restricts how fast you can power up PCs Restricts the ability to find "just one more battle" to squeak a character over the limit to the next level. There are potential easy solutions for this so I trust the game developers to find the right balance.
  2. I loved the old D&D Minis game... I used to be state and nationally ranked. Best of luck with this!
  3. I do agree that it's much more fun to work with non-equal builds, like Pathfinder, than supposedly equal builds, like D&D 4.0. Gamers will work to find a way to abuse builds anyway, and in 4.0 it was NOVA builds, which weren't much fun and definitely broke solo encounters. When a GM does level design, it's important to vary the challenges... drowning, flying, foes at range or behind cover, balancing on dangerous surfaces, spells that attack various attributes from reflex to mind to physical. If that happens, classes which previously appeared to be too weak may start to shine. Pathfinder Monks, for example, start to stand out on a game day where there's balancing, swimming, combat, attacks against will, poisons, abilities to buff up, etc. Allowing people to explore very different builds that are optimized differently is a huge part of the fun. Allowing gamers to "get ahead" by earning combat EXP is a huge part of the fun. Restricting the gamer's ability to advance beyond where the game designer hopes they'll be at any given time prevents the kind of memorable god-like rampages through supposedly tough foes that fulfill the power fantasy of a game like this. I'm very excited about this game and I hope for the best.
  4. D&D doesn't require min-maxing... but being able to build effective and different characters in D&D is a huge draw in the game. Posting most effective builds for odd classes still draws huge interest in Pathfinder forums. Being able to min-max a class viewed as potentially less effective is a challenge that gamers like to debate and undertake. When all classes and stats are created equal, it takes away the gamer's desire to engineer advantages for themselves. D&D 4.0 saw players leave in droves because every class had roughly the same abilities called different things, but doing roughly the same damage. A rogue might have a swarm of daggers and a mage might have fireball, and neither spell was going to kill a single thing but lightly damage a whole group of things. It was not fun. What is fun is min-maxing a fireball and clearing a whole room with it that was supposed to be harder... and then running into a room later where creatures might have resistances in the rock-paper-scissors of balancing quests. It's up to a good GM to mix things up enough so that there are situations which punish the min-max guy. Maybe the min-max fighter is vulnerable vs charm spells, so that is the session where the balanced cleric character shines. Or maybe the min-max barbarian isn't good at range, so there's a session where arial foes are attacking a ship, and other sessions where that barbarian chews up everything. Game design and quest design is the answer to min-maxing... not making all things equal. Y'know what I mean? Having to grind through fights and not be able to optimize builds takes away from the feeling of empowering the gamer.
  5. I'm a huge fan of this project and unfortunately discovered it after Kickstarter was finished. The games that inspired the creation of this game are among my favorites. I'm a 40 year old professional senior designer with game design experience, and I'm not asking how I can sneak into the beta or anything I do not deserve. Based on things I'm seeing in beta videos and designer/developer videos, I have some concerns that hopefully the team may consider? 1 - I thought I saw that there was no fight experience, just quest experience. With exploration and leveling up games like this, a lot of fun comes from users "outsmarting the developers" and getting advanced levels ahead of where they "should be" in relation to the quest. It can be fun for a lot of people to "farm up" and then blow through a few extra levels of your super dungeon before they should be able to. Getting experience from random encounters or clearing every room and "getting ahead" caters to a certain play style and other gamers do not HAVE to do this. They can proceed through the quests in order as quickly as possible. 2 - If combat is challenging and difficult, it is dangerous to make combat a waste of time. (no experience) 3 - D&D 4.0 balanced all their classes... essentially, there was no return for level of effort... the time required to make a good wizard was the same time required to make a good fighter, and both classes had special abilities that did some level of target or area damage for roughly the same amount. This was a huge failure. People still figured out how to NOVA certain character classes, but if you didn't, combat was long and boring. Gamers switched to Pathfinder in droves because people want to be able to make a class that is potentially game breaking at high levels. Pathfinder still protects the GM and has rules in place, but all the classes are NOT perfectly balanced. In this typical old school 3.5 D&D system, you can still make an effective Monk or Fighter if you want that challenge, and you can choose to put in the homework needed to make an uber powerful Cleric or Mage or Barbarian. As a GM and former indy game designer, I have players who don't want complicated class concepts and are happy playing a slightly less min/max concept. I also have players who want to play a min/max concept. Allowing players to min/max without breaking the game... but making it "easier for them to be godlike" than players who don't do that research... this is something people enjoy. What I'm saying is that some of the old school experience did not need to be fixed. When a fireball became so lame it couldn't clear a room in D&D 4.0, there was no joy in casting a fireball or grabbing a handful of D6 dice with a wicked smile. If I'm stuck only advancing through quests, and combat is not a means to advance, and I can't build world-beating characters (balanced but not perfectly balanced), it takes away a big incentive and enjoyment for me. You'll find players working very hard to share "best builds" online and "how to maximize their weapons and spells" and as long as there are ways to max out most of the classes in different strengths, the game will have a lot of legs. You guys seem great, and I'm eagerly awaiting dropping my money on this game and trying to recruit friends to buy it. Please consider the things I've said above, and best of luck clearing the bugs and issues in your beta. Had I been aware of your Kickstarter, I'd be in at about the $200 range. I'm now on your email list so I'll be aware of future stuff. Best of luck!
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