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Posts posted by Dersu42

  1. I thought the new stretch goals,... most people voted yes. So what isn't implemented? I really want that mega dungeon


    It looked like the only two additional stretch goals were more outdoor wilderness areas and more companions. It was stated several times that all of the original stretch goals from the kickstarter campaign were going to be completed. I had to double check and reread what was posted to make sure I understood them correctly.


    So basically nothing has been taken away, just some extra last minute additions are no longer going to be pursued.


    Oh hey look at that, someone beat me to the punch. Yeah what that guy said...

  2. I would like to see a deity, that doesn't want to be a deity.


    I remember reading in the Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy about a character that became immortal by accident. At first they thought it was great, but then after a few millennia they became extremely bored. They decided that in order to occupy some of the time that was left they were going to insult every sentient being in the universe that ever existed. They were going to use a time machine to achieve this, and just to make it even more time consuming, they were going to do it in alphabetical order by name.


    So, I think it would be great to show the unanticipated effects on a mortal being when they becoming a god. I mean eventually the creativity will run out and then what do you do with silly amounts of power and longevity. Think about how depressed young successful child actors can become, now multiply that by omnipotence. You could wind up with a very dangerous, very bored, very lonely and unstable individual with a dark sense of humor and a desire for nothing more than to be entertained or killed, or both.


    To make it even better... the back story could be something like this...


    Long ago an ancient no good, evil, bad, not very nice individual by the name of Morgrok the Maleficent devised a plan to become a god. It was a horrible bad, wicked, evil plan. It involved manipulating two kings into believe that great wealth and power was contained within an ancient ruin (the moment you say power around a king they can't help but want to hear you out.). Power great enough to rule the world (because anything less would be boring right?). Neither king had been known to be very aggressive. (except on Tuesday's when their shows were on) However Morgrok's agents told each king that the other was planning on taking this power and using it to conquer the world. (again, it's all or nothing.)


    Upon hearing this, both kings hastily dispatched large armies to stop the other. (Sooo predictable) The two kingdoms set up camp near the ruins, placing scouts nearby to ensure no one went within. Morgrok's agents again instigated the situation by attacking both sides with small groups of assassins, dressed in the style of the other kingdom. (seriously, a few shirts with the right colors and wham, instant Armageddon.) Both groups of assassins fled the field quickly, once their false identities had been established, retreating back to the ruins. (Yeah that's not suspicious.)


    This lead the war hosts to charge into the ancient palace and become engaged in a terrible and pointless battle. (well most battles are pointless but this one was extra pointless.) Pointless to those who fought it but very important to Morgrok. For when each person died, their souls became trapped in a devious device (curiously it was labeled the Devicious Divece; Turns out Morgrok's Devious Device Designed was Deemed Dyslexic) that was housed within the ruins. When the battle was waning and both sides were bloodied and thinned, Morgrok released a horrible bestial minion to slay the last of the men and ensure none escaped. (What is up with evil guys and their bestial minions. It's like women and little dogs or something.)


    Everything had gone exactly according to plan, the device was filled to overflowing with souls and the final ritual of ascension was ready to be completed. There was just one problem. Morgrok had forgotten to tell his Janitor to take the day off. (Not that I would have believed him if he had told me, usually when he told people to take the day off it meant they were about to die a horrible painful death.) And as the ritual was set to imbue the next individual to step into the center of the ring of power, (A ring of power that Morgrok insisted every night be swept three times and washed to ensure no little bits of anything might get ascended to godhood instead of him. That would have been funny though, imagine an all powerful, all knowing, immortal piece of lint.) it was poor luck for Morgrok AND poor luck for his janitor Carl (Me) when the nightly sweeping began. (He insisted I always start in middle and push out, picky S.O.B.)


    And so there you have it. That is how I, Carl the night janitor, became Carl the immortal janitor. I don't do much sweeping anymore, but I never really had any other titles. And Carl the immortal just sounds sort of intimidating. Some fool would probably wish to test his strength against an Immortal Carl. But an immortal janitor? People tend to ignore janitors, immortal or otherwise. Anywho, I'd be lying if I said I was tired (never HAVE to sleep actually) but sleeping is the last thing I can tolerate doing, so goodbye.

  3. Life is complicated. Understatement of the [specified time unit] for sure. So imagine how complicated Life could get if previous lives and souls played an active role in determining what was happening currently.


    In a way that is exactly how our world works (and part of the reason it's so complicated.) The events of ancient history have shaped the present and we are actively dealing with the result of those events on a daily basis. Your genetic code is determined by your parents ancestry. And those people lived or died, or were made slaves, or fought wars, or became wealthy, or poor, and so on and so forth until eventually you showed up...


    So the soul mechanism in P.E. is just a much flashier, spiritual, genetic code, so to speak, that other people are aware of. It's like if people could see your family history, and the past lives that lead up to you, and made determinations about you because of it.


    Just that right there is going to ensure the game is not super cut and dry. Prejudice and racism and fear and violence are part of our history and world. As such they should be part of these souls as well. Regardless of how decent someone is, it's probably not going to be easy for them if they have the soul of some pariah intertwined with them.


    As for the saving the world thing. There needs to be some kind of issue at hand that ties the story together. Otherwise it becomes a bunch of unrelated tales that, while nice and interesting on their own, give no drive or sense of urgency to the narrative. We are in the world of project eternity for a very short time, as such the story must make up for this by making that time seem worthwhile. When there is no struggle or conflict, that time just seems flat and mundane.


    So saving the world may seem a bit much, but anything less usually doesn't feel like enough.


    Personally I like it when the character goes unnoticed by the rest of the world after the climax. If they succeed, no one notices. If they fail, there is no one left to care.

  4. A game is comprised of many parts. From the story (if there is one) to controls, to music, to characters, to visuals to gameplay; each of those parts has the potential to be amazing and can really carry a game in spite of other parts not being very good. Also, a game can be comprised of many fairly mediocre parts, but they work so well together, that the overall experience is greatly improved and the game itself seems great despite any short comings. A truly great game however, is when all of the parts work well together AND those parts are amazing in their own right.


    This doesn't happen very often but when it does people tend to remember it fondly.

  5. The game can use whatever mathematical formulas it wants to determine hit chances, damage, skill success, ect. What the game can not do however is leave me in the dark about what I should do to improve my chances, improve my damage, up my success rate.


    The areas in which I have control, class selection, skill usage, equipment, character position, stat allocation and item consumption, need to be explicit in their effects. If there are two swords with various stats, and I have no way of determining easily within the game without lots of trial and error which sword is better... then don't show me the stats. Let me just pick the shiniest one and call it good.


    Torchlight II is a good example of this. The way most of the magical modifiers in that game behave is completely bizarre and defies any kind of reasoning you might be able to apply to it from the very limited information you receive in game. This is not a problem on the lower difficulties as the game lets you steamroll enemies with little effort. However, on elite you need to eek out every advantage you can, and that is simply impossible given the inadequate descriptions.

  6. I thought about this topic again and decided I would have another go at it. Just a lot of random ideas about armor and how it should effect the way characters play. Well here goes...


    First, I really like the idea that was stated earlier about armor causing a delay for actions. The heavier the armor, the greater the delay. This is a very straight forward approach to balancing the heavier armor types. This allows for players to cater to different builds with their armors.


    Second, I like the idea of material composition representing the quality of an item. (Steel > Iron > Bronze ect.) However, I think really rare and semi magical materials like dragon skin or mithril, should at face value be inferior to the highest level common material items. Rare materials gain their power from having a greater potential for enchantments and other augmentations. This leaves them as a sort of blank slate and allows a player to invest a lot of their hard won magical crafting materials to make a really special suit of.. whatever happens to fit their needs.


    I think there should be fairly limited sources for the best crafting materials. And I think many recipes should share components so the player has to decide exactly what item would best suit their team, while understanding what other items they may be giving up in the process.


    Oh and a last thing on crafting, some of the really amazing materials like mithril, should be counted as the next rank down in terms of weight for penalties. So mithril chain wears like leather or maybe even like cloth instead of chain. Oh, just had an idea... maybe the player can enchant the material to go either way. Hardened Dragon leather confers extra protection and wears just like normal leather. Supple dragon leather confers it's normal protection but wears like cloth. That would make for some really interesting decisions when crafting.


    Third, There should be some sort of modifiers built into the class skills that reflect the type of armor the character is wearing. Example: Sneaking type and acrobatic type abilities should suffer in heavy armor. I am not saying every skill needs this, but enough do so a heavily armored character of X class feels different from a lightly armored character of X class.


    More on the sneaking and acrobatics; these two types of skills are usually used to avoid damage (not get hit), and heavy armor is used to reduce damage (get hit for less). So to make them not work well together really makes sense. It becomes a tricky either or decision and not an obvious one or both decision.


    Fourth, The magic system is going to need special attention if there are going to be plate wearing wizards and such. I really like the idea that the more heavily armored a mage type becomes, the more self oriented their casting becomes until they become the only target they can cast on, or at least their range is reduced to only that which they can touch. Reducing the casters range, brings them into danger, which makes the heavy armor earn it's keep so to speak.


    There should be some spell lines for each caster that support their efforts in the front lines. Enhancing or imbuing melee strikes, improved protection, caster centered AOEs, touch spells ect. These spells might not see much use from a robe wearing mage, but a plate wearing one will see them as a godsend.


    Last point, I swear this time, light characters versus heavy characters in combat. So far, if we are going by these suggestions, we have light characters taking more damage when they get hit, but attacking more often. Also light characters can sneak and use acrobatic skills without penalty which leads to naturally higher rates of avoidance. So a light character could become an evasion tank if they really focused on their avoidance, stats, skills, equipment, whatever AND they can do more damage. So I think there needs to be another trade off with avoidance.


    I think if a character successfully avoids an attack, they should stop attacking their target for a brief moment, or maybe just sacrifice their next attack. Of course this means a character that is non-stop dodging is effectively stun locked. So maybe they are just brought to a minimum attack speed (attacking as slow as possible). Why should this be? Well This creates a situation where you want your agile characters to flank the enemy forces, killing them quickly, and not getting bogged down or surrounded. You also want your heavy characters to create a front line and break up the field so the light characters have someone to maneuver around.


    It makes light characters important because of their damage potential, it makes them viable through their damage avoidance, but it also means they need to be on their toes with positioning so they don't get stuck in a corner or something and unable to attack back successfully. LOTs of tactical play would come out of this one mechanic.


    Let me know what you guys think.

  7. Armor Design


    We would like our armor system to accomplish the following goals:

    • Make wearing different types of armor a real choice for the player based on both character build and circumstance. E.g. a swashbuckling lightly-armored fighter will tend to wear one of a variety of light armor types (maybe a gambeson or leather cuirass), but in a circumstance where protection is of utmost importance, the player may still choose to wear heavy armor with a loss in build optimization.
    • Disassociate armor value from class type in favor of different build types. E.g. a wizard can wear heavy armor and be a different type of wizard instead of just "a wizard who is bad".
    • Allow a character to maintain a character concept throughout the game without suffering extreme mechanical penalties. E.g. a character who starts the game in some form of light armor can complete the game in some form of light armor with appropriate gameplay trade-offs compared to wearing heavy armor.
    • Introduce new or upgraded armor types throughout the game instead of using ++ versions (which in itself would pose problems unless we directly duplicated A/D&D's d20-based attack mechanics).


    Those first three goals seem very closely tied together and the easiest solution I could come up with off the top of my head is this: Have each class behave differently depending on what type of armor they are wearing.


    What do I mean by this? Well take that hide wearing barbarian for example. Let's say that when the barbarian is wearing hide armor he feels more attuned to the wilds and creatures he has slain for his own survival and gains a sort of totemic ability. So depending on the material the hide armor is constructed from the barbarian gains some bonus to his combat abilities. Wolf hide armor allows the barbarian to "stalk" his prey, bear hide armor gives him a ferocious charge or swipe, drake hide gives a leap attack ect. This bonus could simply be a passive bonus as well, it really depends on what works best with the combat system.


    Put that same barbarian in chain or scale mail and suddenly he becomes less of a straight damage dealer or light warrior and becomes a medium fighter with a increased bonus to damage mitigation and possibly a skill that stuns enemies.


    Put him in full plate and now you have a warlord that rallies his troops and increases allies damage through a warcry.


    Now, take a different class altogether, a mage. Put them in hide armor and mess up their hair a little and they can be a sort of wild mage. Their spells gain a random component that can cause them to do increased damage but they now have an area in which the effect might occur instead of pinpoint accuracy. With friendly fire on this can be a real concern.


    Place that mage in a robe and their spells cost less, cast quicker or have a chance to not be consumed; Or they gain more spell slots/ magic resource. Basically they become a more versatile mage.


    Place that mage in chainmail and now their spell range is reduced but they can charge their weapons with various effects that are released when they strike.


    Finally put the mage in full plate and their range is reduced to zero; they can only cast spells on themselves to buff their combat prowess. However they can charge their armor to release effects when they get hit and they can charge their shield to reflect different types of damage depending on what they charged it with.


    This kind of system effectively adds a subclass to every class depending on their armor type, and that can become pretty daunting. So maybe whatever benefit the class gains from the armor is limited to a single additional skill type or spell line.


    The final element to this system is damage and how it is going to be handled, and how armor is going to mitigate it. The benefits of the heavier armor types should come with trade-offs built in for each class. Otherwise heavy armor, through it's greater mitigation, becomes the only armor anyone should wear.


    I think a pretty basic but effective way to get a balance is to have armors accentuate the defensive properties of a character as they get heavier while reducing the offensive properties. So every class will effectively do more damage in lighter armors based on the type of bonuses they confer, but they will also not handle reprisals as well. However this leaves medium armors in the lurch a little. To min/max a team you would just stack heavy and light armors for damage mitigation and dealing damage. So maybe give medium armors the support role in combat. These armors give access to better crowd control, and buffing abilities while still maintaining decent damage and being able to take some hits.


    This gives players something to think about when planning their teams. Having a whole team of maxed out damage dealers might seem cool until you see how much damage they start taking and you realize your team doesn't have the staying power to handle extended campaigns.


    OK onto the final point, how to introduce armor to the player without + modifiers. I guess if each armor type were to effectively change how a character handled then picking a TYPE of armor would be more important than the quality. So then each armor type could be given upgrade options that would take a character all the way to the end game and these could be expressed via the material the armor is constructed from.


    Hide armor starts with gopher hide and ends with elder dragon hide, Leather starts with boiled donkey leather and ends with studded reinforced demi-gorgon.. ect. Now, the player may wind up finding two really awesome sets of full plate and only a mediocre set of hide as they progress. This might make them decide if it would be better to change out their totemic barbarian for a warlord to get the better mitigation and stats or stick with their chosen type to maintain their current damage bonus and skills.


    So maybe this solution isn't the easiest to implement... but I think it nicely ties together all of the stated goals and makes armor a decision with multiple pros and cons to weigh. What role do I want this character to fill? A heavy armor front line character, a light armor flanking character, or a medium armor support character? What kind of mitigation do I want this character to have? What unique properties does this class exhibit in this type of armor over a different class?


    Well that's my idea on the topic anyways.

  8. I think the method this game is going to take is rather obvious given then unique soul mechanic that has been discussed in the updates.


    You will create any character you can imagine, any race, class, gender combo will be open. However as the game unfolds it will be revealed that you have a rather unique soul that will awaken and tie in with events and actions that make your character special beyond your average Project Eternity denizen. This soul may in fact have been thought destroyed by some powerful nasty individuals and now that they know it lives in you they will want to finish the job.


    Anyways that's just my guess, but that means it doesn't matter what your character was or is, they are still going to be swept up in all kinds of events because of this reborn soul mechanic. So put this one in the BG, PST category of blank slate with partially defined events surrounding the character.

  9. I understand that the characters are probably going to be pretty small. I also understand that this game is going to be very big. Therefore I would much rather have some basic sprites that maybe differentiate each class of armor (cloth from leather, leather from pate) And, if they have time, include some sprites that reflect quality or material (Dragon scale from regular plate and leather, or really rare armor from normal non magical stuff). Beyond that, there isn't going to be a huge return on character cosmetics if they don't stand much taller than my thumbnail anyways.


    I am going to infer way more about how my characters look from their portraits. So full body portraits in the character menu would be pretty cool I think.


    As for the whole male versus female thing. Step 1. Make the armor look functional. Step 2. Make it look cool, that's it. Chainmail bikinis have never been functional, so don't make those.

  10. Entering and Exiting the dungeon is a non issue if the dungeon lacks any kind of respawning or randomized encounter mechanic. If a level stays empty once the players have moved through it then it poses zero challenge or difficulty to have to reenter these levels.


    So the real issue is not how many exits the dungeon has. But what kind of progression is required to move through the dungeon levels and how quickly the difficulty increases as the player goes through the dungeon.


    Personally I would prefer to see each level fleshed out with it's own unique puzzles and encounters with barriers for entry to the next level. And each level should ramp up considerably in difficulty. So ideally the first few levels are appropriate for when the average player is introduced to the dungeon and the last few levels contain some of the most challenging content in the game.


    With a dungeon like that, entering and exiting the dungeon after almost every level would be very natural.


    Another option would be to save the dungeon for the end of the game as a sort of extra area. Then you could try and make the dungeon a sort of marathon exercise where all the content is around max level and it tasks the player with seeing how far down a player could make it before having to turn around. This doesn't seem overly exciting and would require the dungeon to re-populate after each trip. This would also be the only real reason to limit entrance options.


    Anyways point is that the dungeon design dictates the appropriate access options.

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