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Nivenus

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Everything posted by Nivenus

  1. I'm guessing there will be a race that somehow ties into the concept of "souls" in the game. The so-called Godlike (of which we know nearly nothing it is fair to remember), may be an example. Possibly we might also see some race that ties into the folklore of Europe that isn't usually represented as playable, such as lycanthropes or goblin-like creatures (I'm thinking brownies and kobolds, for example). Another possibility is something from outside of European folklore, perhaps representing a foreign and uncommon race in the accessible game world.
  2. An interesting question to pose, since there are many kinds of slavery. In Medieval Europe, slavery as we usually understand it, was more or less prohibited, since the keeping of slaves (especially Christian slaves) was considered contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church. However, slavery did exist peripherally in most of Europe and more significantly in rich parts of the continent like the Italian city-states or the Byzantine Empire, where the mix of foreign cultures ironically made slavery more appropriate (since the Church was more willing to allow the enslavement of non-Christians). And Muslim nations had virtually no objections to slavery at all, though it was considered good behavior to free your slaves before your or their death. More significantly, perhaps, serfdom was pretty much ubiquitous throughout all of Europe and is quite similar to what we would consider slavery. However, serfs were not chattel property who could be sold at the market and were instead tied to the land they worked. They were obliged to perform work without pay, but they weren't exactly considered property either. There's also, of course, the long-practiced tradition of indentured servitude. So I'm going to go with a "yes," even though the question is rather non-specific in its meaning, because slavery of various forms did exist throughout most pre-modern societies and I don't think we should shy away from it. Also, the second question adds a bit more variety to the equation, so I'll vote yes for that as well.
  3. Why specifically? Does that matter? I mean, I said I think it works fine. I also like purely skill-based systems like Fallout, even though they're not my favorite ruleset (I prefer classes of some sort). It seems like you're contending my answer for no particular reason, since I said dividing the attributes up could work well given what we already know about the game (namely that combat and non-combat skills will be divvied up similarly). If you really want an answer I'll give one, but it seems irrelevant.
  4. So... basically something like Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines' division between social, mental, and physical stats. I'd be okay with that. It's not necessarily my favorite system and I don't think it would work for every game but since Tim Cain recently said you'd level up combat and non-combat skills separately it seems semi-plausible.
  5. The full budget for The Witcher 2 was less than 10mln USD... That's not that much more, when you consider the amount of work done... Full 3D, full voiceover, development of a completely new engine for the purpose of the game, etc... To be fair, it was made in Poland. In my experience North American costs of production are much higher (for whatever reason) than production costs in most other countries. Red Cliff, for example, is the most expensive film ever to be filmed in China and cost $80 million. Compare that with $220 million for The Avengers, which while on the high end, is hardly extraordinary for an American blockbuster.
  6. Actually, most pre-modern armies required soldiers to arm themselves. So blacksmiths definitely existed as a private industry, though free markets as we would understand them didn't exist and trade in the later portion of the Middle Ages was largely managed by monopolistic guilds.
  7. A different engine seems highly unlikely. I'm pretty sure Obsidian's satisfied with Unity based on their post earlier and besides which, that would be a pretty big switch, even at such an early stage in development. More likely, the stretch goals will include some of the possibilities Urquhart was talking about earlier.
  8. It's not actually that weird. Some of the biggest games in modding are the Elder Scrolls games, Fallout 3, and Fallout: New Vegas. Dragon Age: Origins also had a pretty big modding community as I recall. All four of those are exclusively singleplayer. So while NWN is a good example of modding being used for multiplayer purposes, its hardly the only purpose modding has. In fact, I think that SP modding usually gets higher priority since it doesn't require everyone to be running the same mods.
  9. I'm okay with co-operative multiplayer and would probably like it if it was implemented well (unlike DS3 from what I understand) but it's not a big priority for me. I'd much rather see multiple language support and modding as stretch goals.
  10. Whether or not the game is truly isometric (fixed perspective, equal angles/sides, etc.) doesn't matter to me that much. I think an overhead 3D camera similar to Wasteland 2 would be entirely okay. But then again I'd be okay if the game was just third-person, which I know many here most emphatically would not be okay with. So I really could go either way.
  11. I'll admit the mental impression I have of Jim Cummings is a lot different than most people's (Robotink from SatAM) but he is a wonderful voice actor with a lot of versatility and range, so assuming Obsidian can grab him (and given how many roles he's taken I imagine he can't be that expensive) he'd be a good one to pick for Obsidian's limited VA approach.
  12. Technically it only means that the self-selected demographic of people answering a poll on Obsidian's forum (which may or may not be representative of the donor base) are largely from Europe. However, given what I've heard about the gaming market in Central and Eastern Europe, it would not surprise me in the least to learn that the poll reflects the actual demographics of Obsidian's fan base. Which makes the importance of greenlighting a German, Polish, or Russian translation of the game more obvious.
  13. I continue to be stunned by the number of people who don't realize this game is in the lower-mid budget range. What do people think $1.1 million buys in game development? Dragon Age? Alpha Protocol? Those games easily cost several times more to produce.
  14. I don't mind having rolled dice as an option in character creation, but I think a point buy system should be present as well.
  15. I would say "fully voiced," because I do think it adds something to the game, but I also understand that the budget of Project Eternity would make such a goal untenable without severely hampering other parts of development (regardless of what the poll says). So I'm going to have to go with BG2/PS:T levels of voice acting.
  16. This really tells me Justin knows what he's doing. Faaar too many games fall into that trap DA:O comes to mind. All the combat music sounds really similar (i.e., big, epic, bombastic). I love Inon Zur and he would be on my shortlist for Project Eternity, but Justin Bell's definitely showing some good sense there.
  17. I thought the concept sounded vaguely familiar (I recently played V:TMB for the first time). The idea of a "broken soul" and the emphasis on death as part of the natural also recalls PS:T, as many others have said.
  18. Multiplatform releases make marginal platforms like Linux more competitive in the market. I can only see that as a good thing when it comes straight down to it. So I support a Linux release, even if I myself don't use the OS.
  19. Ah, but I love traps! All those annoying, peevy ways to kill you off unexpectedly! I think it's fair to say there will probably be traps, since virtually all of the titles Project Eternity is taking inspiration from have traps in one form or another. Even Fallout had traps.
  20. What's the difference ultimately between a really powerful spirit and a god? A great many religions don't really make any kind of distinction between the two (Shinto's a good example). The Norse gods weren't immortal. Nor were the Greek gods or Celtic gods truly (more than a few bite the dust in the myths). The concept of a "god" as an omniscient, omnipotent being with supreme control of the forces of nature is more of an Abrahamic concept than one endemic to all religion. We can't say for certain at this point because although it's clear gods play a role in the world, it might not be so obvious as to leave no doubt at all of their existence. But if the setting has gods who are as active as those in the Forgotten Realms, for example, than denying their existence or presuming they're just a bunch of wizards playing tricks on the world would defy the available evidence. At that point you're not being a skeptic (like many real-life atheists)... you're being a conspiracy theorist. Again, whether you choose to worship them or call them "powers" is irrelevant. You're not really an atheist if you actually believe that they exist. The exact same thing can be said of any theistic religion. ie the christian god allowing the devil to torture job and kill everyone he loved on the whim of a bet is not very moral either Technically that depends on the specific variety of Christianity. Not all forms of Christianity have the same attitude towards Hell or Satan. I'm not certain what the rules are on discussing real-life religion but I imagine they're pretty strict, so I'll leave it at that.
  21. So far the only new thing I've seen is the vaguely described matter of souls. I don't consider extending the timeline beyond the usual middle ages to the renaissance a significant change. I don't know, I'd consider the addition of guns to be a pretty big change (given how much of a fuss has been raised over it), even if they're of the relatively primitive variety. Oceanic colonization usually isn't dealt with all that much in fantasy either. Not neccaseraly. What if the gods only exist because we created and sustain them with our belief? In that case it becomes a bit of a paradox as it might be true now that the gods exist though only because enough people believe in there existance, but that would be no reason to believe in them as if people stopped believing in them they would no longer exist making your disbelief in them true then Even if the gods are created and sustained by belief (which is an open question at this point) you still can't be an atheist without being blind to what appears to be an empirical truth that deities exist and have an active role in the world. Choosing not to worship them (and thereby to deny them power) is one thing, but to deny their existence in this setting would be foolishness it seems to me, since it's pretty clear that they do exist. Hence the Flat Earth Atheist comment.
  22. It may not be as unique as PS:T but it doesn't sound like its a generic fantasy setting either. Which has resulted in a lot of outcries of its own, I've noticed.
  23. One note I hadn't touched on earlier in my initial reply was the idea of designing an enemy adventurer party, which sounds pretty interesting. IIRC this was a concept Black Isle had for Van Buren, correct? Good question. Can I be an atheist bard who's got soul? Just because the gods exist is no good reson to go around believing in them as it only encourages the buggers Strictly speaking you can't be an atheist in this setting unless you're of the "Flat Earth Atheist" variety, since it seems that the existence of the gods is pretty established. That doesn't mean you couldn't be a maltheist, however. Eventually, yes, guns made traditional metal armors obsolete. However, there's about three centuries of history wherein the two coexisted (plate armor didn't really disappear from warfare until the early to mid 18th century). In fact, the kind of plate armor we normally think of (Gothic plate) was actually invented after early firearms (as stated multiple times in the firearms thread) and was specifically designed to shore up chainmail's weaknesses against new weapons like firearms. So the idea of mages using plate armor to counter firearms is actually a perfectly valid response and one that has a precedent in history.
  24. Interesting. So reincarnation is the default state of a soul. Reminds me a bit of Jade Empire, what with its emphasis on the cycle of reincarnation. I'm guessing (no need to answer, of course) that the plot of the game will involve some force disrupting the cycle (perhaps a soul that refuses or is unable to pass on), which the player becomes exposed to. It also seems pretty likely based on your comments later on about deities that the official explanation regarding souls may not be the whole story. So, in other words, a bit like the caste system of India (which was based in part on the doctrine of karma and reincarnation) but with a more definite measurement of whether a soul is "strong" or "fractured." What's interesting about this is that there seems to be some validity to the distinction between one soul and another in the setting, though perhaps it isn't as black and white as any one group would like to imagine it is. A possibility that occurs to me is that the broken souls aren't damaged randomly or through any fault of their own, but due to some unknown factor (possibly also related to the "pure" souls' strength or divine power plays). So physical training and bodily mutilation are both endemic to magical training? I personally like this take: it seems as though accessing magical power should take more than simple book-learning. The kind of energy mages routinely wield can't come from nowhere - there should be a cost. While I don't expect Obsidian will have mages lopping off fingers to cast the equivalent of magic missile, I do find it encouraging that the concept of "no pain, no gain" is present. Additionally, I'm guessing then that each class has access to innate supernatural abilities, even if they aren't mages? That's an interesting turn to take, although not a poor one in my mind. I've never quite been fond of the "mage exceptionalism" in many fantasy settings, where it seems as though some people are magical and others aren't. It sounds like this is shaping up to be a potentially malthiestic setting, which could go a number of ways. It'll be interesting to see if the deities of the world are entirely selfish and unconcerned with the plight of mere mortals so long as their power grows or whether there is some division on the subject, with both exploitative and benevolent deities. Additionally, I'm curious as to whether or not there is some kind of greater purpose beyond the deities' deception that we are unaware of. This is what I was expecting, more or less, after the announcement of firearms in Project Eternity. That said it's interesting to see that the rise of late medieval technology has not given rise to early modern humanism or religious dissent the way it did in our world. You mention later that the printing press hasn't been invented yet, which I'm guessing is the main reason behind this discrepancy, since it's not as easy to spread radical ideas. I'm guessing that also means long-range magical communication is difficult or at the very least largely controlled by those already in power. I'll be interested to see how these weapons play into the game's combat (sans siege weapons, I'm guessing). Most RPGs in my experience give only very minor consideration to any weapons besides swords, bows, and crossbows, for example and it would be interesting to see if mixed arms warfare is given more thought and consideration in Project Eternity's combat. On the other hand, while pikes, halberds, and other polearms were the bread and butter of most late medieval armies, they were most effective in large numbers, which PE's 6-member party doesn't really equate to. It sounds like maritime travel may be more important to the game then I'd hitherto assumed, although it could just as easily be a background environment to inform the setting. I like the idea though that actual sea monsters impede transoceanic voyages. I could imagine whaling ships that specialize in dealing with this sea beasties arising as maritime trade and colonization increase in importance. Interesting that firearms are considered less than fully effective against particularly large monsters like (I'm presuming) dragons or trolls. This makes sense if you think about it, they don't call an elephant gun an elephant gun for nothing - thicker hides means greater deceleration for the bullet which means more resistance (but not immunity) to damage from gunfire. This tidbit also seems to imply that large monsters are not terribly uncommon, since their resistance to gunfire is reason enough to consider firearms unsuitable for widespread usage in combat. It would also seem that guns are explicitly anti-magical. As others have pointed out, there is some plausibility that the old abjurations of mages accustomed to dealing with bows and crossbows may not hold up against the higher power of an arqueubus volley. I also like the idea of armored mages; as others have said it lends some plausibility to the setting, since the rule that armor somehow "interfered" with magical casting never seemed terribly believable. I don't think so. I'm sure non-mages had a way to penetrate the arcane veil before the invention of firearms. My guess is that guns simply make said penetration (significantly) easier.
  25. This is probably its own conversation, but I'm of the view that this sort of approach sucks. Those games, Dragon Age 2 especially, rather gave me the sensation of wearing a straight jacket. Not being able to interact with npcs who haven't been given scripted events can be frustrating. I more or less agree: I'd prefer if every NPC was expendable. But that does become an issue when writing the game, since it means you have to account for any number of potential issues that the players might cause by inadvertently killing someone. In traditional P&P that's not so much an issue because the GM can come up with something new on the fly but Obsidian can't do that; they have to anticipate player actions in advance, which is much harder. It's not impossible, I'll grant you, and a lot of games do have that as a feature. But I can definitely see why non-essential companions and plot NPCs aren't universal and why Obsidian might not include them in their own game, even if it is my personal preference.
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