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About eyesofastorm

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    Sunsets, long walks on the beach, and old school RPGs.


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  1. Only a few replies here so far, but I went from universal scorn to universal interest at least. I think I like it here.
  2. I started this topic on the DAIII Bioboards and got little to no support for the idea. I was honestly surprised by that, so I thought I'd bring the idea here to see if I am really insane in that I like the idea or whether I just don't fit with Bioware's audience anymore. So here goes: I would like to see some story decisions that involve a degree of chance rather than certainty. I present the following situation: You and your merry band roll into a village to learn that a zombie attack is imminent. You decide to help fend off the attack. In a standard cRPG, there are going to be a number of things that you can do to improve your odds. Recruit citizens of the village to help fight. Donate armaments to those citizens so they aren't fighting with shovels and pitchforks. Build fortifications. Et cetera. In this odds based system, I would propose an out of the box solution. Say you tell everyone in the village to hide in their basements as the attack approaches. You take one individual and place them in the center of town and build extremely sound, extremely tight fortification around them. Then you set up every flammable material you can find in the village in a field around the fortification. You hope that, when the attack commences, the zombies all converge on the single human since he is the only living thing in sight. Once they do, that individual lights the fire and all of the zombies die in gouts of flame without a single casualty on your side. You get mad hero points with the village because every last one of them survived and there was little to no property damage. Here's where the odds come in: say you choose to pursue this out of the box solution. There is a 25% chance that the zombies largely ignore the character in the fortification and rampage through the town until they find the villagers cornered in their basements. Casualties are higher than they might have been because you've put your fighters in disadvantageous positions. There is a 30% chance that the zombies break through the fortification and kill your decoy though he/she still manages to light the fire and kill the zombies. There is a 10% chance they kill your decoy before he/she can light the fire. There is a 40% chance that your decoy dies from smoke inhalation while trapped in the fortification or that the fortification catces fire and kills him/her with the zombies. There is a 50% chance that the fire spreads to the village and burns down many people's homes. Knowing all of that, do you take the risk on the crazy plan that might just work and create the best possible outcome or do you just batten down the hatches and do it the old fashioned way knowing that a number of casualties are a foregone conclusion? Obvious problems are that in a game with outcomes based on odds rather than purely on decisions you could make different decisions on different playthroughs and end up with the same outcome. Also, the player might feel like they have less control or agency if their decisions alter the odds of outcomes rather than directly alter the outcomes. The benefit, to my mind, is that it would allow the player a sense of triumph unlike anything else we've seen the way games are currently designed. Say one player takes the safe choice every time such a choice presents itself and even though their bets are safer, they fall on the wrong side of the dice roll and get the worst possible outcomes. Tragedy... dejection. On the other hand, say the player gambles every time and wins every gamble and just utterly crushes the game and everything works out as perfectly as it possibly could. It would give you the feeling of truly beating the odds in a way that is just impossible in a game where all outcomes are predetermined once you make a choice about which road you will choose. So PE-ites... what do you think? Would you like a game where an element of chance... of risk is involved in the story and the decisions you make? Or am I really the only one that thinks this is a good idea?
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