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Everything posted by Game_Exile

  1. Good point. There is an issue with the UI here, and whether or how the game should pause when accessing "lists" of class abilities, spells, etc. Obviously there are many ways everything (the UI, the choice of spells, active/passive abilities, limits/costs on pausing, etc.) can look, which could be more appropriate or less approprate for a real time combat system with limits on pausing. I am pretty sure there are MANY ways to make a good squad based tactical combat system with limited command pauses. "Truly tactical"? Yeah, I remember BG2. The vanilla game was piss easy with free saves and reloading, at least after you figured out how the spells work. All the challenge was in learning what shows up in the tougher combat encounters (especially with insta death spells and spell protections on liches, dragons, etc.). There was very little improvisation in the tough battles (outside of "exploits", like with traps), and no need for it in the easier ones. A good combat system with less micromanagement and limited command pauses will help to eliminate over elaborate combat puzzles, and have more opportunities for thoughtful tactics. I'm talking about a system where you don't necessarily have to react to every little thing that happens, rather you evaluate what's happening on the battlefield and execute the correct tactics, understand? Competence is also knowing what you should be paying attention to at any given time, and that does not equate to "twitching". That's what I know. You know you will be able to queue up combat commands in P:E, right? And if a mage has to open a spellbook in the middle of battle and read from the correct passage, then why shouldn't it cost him something, if it's not going to be time? I don't expect P:E to put so much emphasis on puzzling out the correct order of commands from the start of battles, with pinpoint timings for player actions. Pause is still there if you need to coordinate better, and limits on pauses should be designed along the lines of how the player needs to use them, obviously. "Pain and death", oooh I'm so ****ing scared. There is a big difference between making the correct decisions as combat progresses, and pausing every time you are confused or see that there's something wrong and then figuring out timings and making decisions when there is no stress at all. Pausing itself should be a signficant decision with some risk because it is a game changer, plain and simple. It should not always be the safest or smartest decision to make. Yes, you do know that rounds were simulated in BG2, right? So you made the wrong guess about what to do in these situations. So, what? "Tactics", my ass. And why shouldn't stuff like this happen with or without limits on pausing?
  2. It is a bad idea to design a strategic choice where the risk connected to it (journeying with poor health in this case) is eliminated by leaving the computer and going to get a sandwich. If P:E had a mechanic closer to Fallout, where you could choose the amount of time you want to "rest", then waiting around for health to regenerate on your pit fighter wouldn't be as much of an issue. My point with resting, anyway, was that there should be some significant resource risk (time, money, or whatever) in resting, where resting gives you a significant advantage (which will probably work out to almost always). This is one of the reasons I think there should be timers/time limits on all sorts of things in the game. Thanks for the recommendation, maybe? I don't think I'll be playing BG2 again, much less dive back into the BG2 mod gauntlet.
  3. It has everything to do with the game's design, lol. This is a good idea, and Crowseye pretty much says why: The decisions to rest can be a lot more interesting than it was in say, Baldur's Gate, where you just hit the rest button when you needed to recover spells and relieve exhaustion. Having advantages and disadvantages to where and how you rest, as mentioned above, can make money more interesting, for example, provided that money is scarce. Resting at an inn costs money, obviously, and "pitching camp" could cost supplies. The issue here is that there should be some more significant risk in resting than just making the player spend extra time traveling back and forth to resting spots for some advantage. If there were timers or time limits involved in the quest(s), for example, deciding whether or not to rest would be a lot more significant. The dungeon "resets" need to make sense in the story/setting. If the devs can design a few "reset" variations that would be appropriate in the setting and make the dungeons extra challenging, that would be a good way to implement some risk for resting or not finishing a dungeon or dungeon level in a single run.
  4. I don't understand why people wouldn't want combat to be "actiony", when combat is pretty much the highest representation of "action". It is, by definition, where the most action happens. And it's not like I'm demanding a game where people have to be mouse and keyboard ninjas to win combat encounters. I'd just like to see a system where there is more tangible benefit for making the right decisions at the right time. What does it matter if some people wanted turn-based? Combat in P:E is going to be in real time. And the big issue with turn based combat isn't necessarily if it is more "actiony" or less "actiony"; it is whether or not you have a system where it is appropriate to demand more precise and/or more elaborate calculations from the player. Yes, I meant skill in the broad sense, and skill should matter, of course. I've already mentioned that the player shouldn't have to constantly micromanage individual combatants. Obviously, in a squad based tactical combat system, you want to be thinking about and making moves with the bigger picture in mind, and you shouldn't have to execute many elaborate maneuvers with pinpoint timing. But that doesn't mean there should be an escape button for every time you **** up. If "mental" competence and skill have nothing to do with time, then why does every single standard aptitude test, from grammar school to higher education, have strict time limits? Everyone needs time to make elaborate and precise calculations from broad assessments of the playing field. Good turn based systems demand that the player make these calculations. The demands in a game of chess rely on the quality of your opponent. I don't expect that players will have to know very elaborate sequences of moves and countermoves in P:E, nor do I think it would be appropriate to design combat so that players would have to do this (though some people might want this sort of thing). For novices, there should be an opportunity to learn the ins and outs of the combat system as the game progresses. It's not as if you start the game with every single combat ability at your disposal, anyway. Yeah, there are lots of ways to limit command pauses, with varying effects. A meter, like the one you suggest, could be based on some stat as well (like intelligence?). I'd like to see resource costs integrated into the game, instead of isolating a pause mechanic just for "gameplay" purposes. The pauses should be invisible (obviously they are not), or they should have some marginal place in the story/setting, like a character's ability to swing an axe.
  5. "Seriously" and "truly", liar? There is no space in between "obvious" and "foundationary", with general comments, amirite? This is what I posted, in case you forgot: I am making a simple recommendation about balance based on what I am guessing the game's content will look like. If some skills will not be that interesting to use on their own, they should at least be linked to combat. "Ludicrously inefficient", my ass. An excellent example of the fact that combat is capable of being screwed up in game design. However, I was actually asking for an example of the balancing relationship to which you were referring that I don't seem to be comprehending. That's it, you're simply not comprehending, and trying your hardest to pretend like it's some glaring fault in my initial post. It is an example of how lockpicking can impact combat challenges, moron. And people want to call me a "troll".
  6. Turn-based combat has clear limits on actions that can be taken in each time interval. And you don't emulate turn-based combat by pausing whenever you want, because there is no pausing and reissuing commands between intervals in turn based combat. First you call this "the most logical compromise", then you talk about "cheater illogic" not mattering because Obsidian promised to make the compromise that is supposed to be the "most logical", lol. Having any command pause at all is a compromise from a real time system. The reasons for having limits on command pausing aren't based on some compromise pact with the developers or some "illogic" having to do with turns. The issue is how the players will need to approach and think about combat, especially with respect to their own competence and skill. It shouldn't be nearly as pronounced as in action games, but it should definitely show up more, especially in the absence of the sort of strict calculations you can put in turn based systems.
  7. And once they've carried out the orders, you'll need to give them new orders. Not to mention pausing allows you to change those orders right away if you screw up or need to make adjustments, assuming that the combat system isn't one that simulates "rounds" or "turns". It all depends on what combat looks like, of course. And there is always an advantage in pause, at the very least, in being able to stop and think about what's going on, without having to deal with more developments as they happen. You mean like in the IE games, where rounds and turns are simulated? If individual party members execute commands at different intervals, then no, it's not like a turn based game. And the issue with the IE games has always been the stuff that players could do between turns, or else felt like they should be able to do between turns but could not. The problems with targeting and cancelling commands (by the player) in the middle of turns are solvable with some fine tuning, but the bigger issue with free movement and spatial/timing calculations is not. Are you suggesting that pause won't be needed at all, and that the devs should just get rid of pausing, or limit it to a few times per combat? LOL. Any way you cut it, there is value attached to command pauses, and what that value looks like should determine how the command pause mechanic works, and also vice versa, to a much lesser extent. Obviously, these things should be designed and balanced in ways that are sensible. Lol, what am I supposed to be explaining? It should be obvious to anyone with at least half a brain how putting some limit or other on activating pauses and/or issuing commands during pause could impact the combat system.
  8. Of course I think it would be ridiculous to limit mouse clicks and reading item and ability descriptions in this game (while limiting combat commands, on the other hand, is only sensible, and was already being done in the IE games outside of movement and cancelling). Come on, you are just trying to obfuscate what is and is not a resource mechanic in order to deny my point. Yes, and there have always been boundaries set on resources in those games. RtwP was introduced as a sort of compromise between a consistent "physical reality" in the game world vs Pen and Paper rules which have no spatial dimension. If you're not going to at least simulate "turns" or "rounds" (can you really do this properly in a game with free movement?) then it only makes sense to draw boundaries somewhere else. The command pause mechanic is the most obvious place to draw boundaries when you are trying to balance how the player will manage commands in real time tactical combat. Which is why I wouldn't want to eliminate command pauses altogether. If you see this coming, why not make sure you can pause? "Twitchy" is definitely not the right word for executing complicated mechanical actions, and if you've played RTS games, for example, you'd know the difference. Hell, even being good at sports IRL, requires that you have some sense and foresight about what is happening, not to mention combat (or any other activity, for that matter). Dude, it's not like it's the number of skills/abilities at your disposal that matters with pausing. It's the frequency with which you have to make inputs in order to control them (and the difficulty of those inputs) that matters. I intially responded to Jon's post because of what he had to say about queuing actions and limiting "active" abilities vis a vis pausing. Eliminating the need to babysit any one character the entire length of combat is what makes tactical coordination of multiple characters possible. And why shouldn't there be some advantages for competence and skill on the part of the player, like in ARPGs and RTS games? Obviously, I'm not suggesting that P:E be as demanding in action mechanics as those types of games, but some benefit is in order (other than better "pacing") for making the right choices in a timely manner, even if they are only very simple choices. No pausing always gives you an advantage, albeit one which can be more or less significant based on what is happening in combat. As you mentioned, there will likely be situations where you will want to give orders to many combatants at once. If you put limits or extra costs on command pauses, the player would have to use pauses more carefully, and this is only proper because of how potentially powerful pausing can be. Not just a checkbox, but a reasonably balanced difficulty option.
  9. This is the only thing left I don't quite see as very accurate. There is nothing accurate or inaccurate about it. It's an observation about how things work psychologically, and it's practically in the definition of the words "whole" and "significant". When you are gathering resources and strength in a game, what are you gathering them for? Like I said, it depends on how the player needs to reach his goals. It was obviously a general balance issue that I had. My post would actually be very easy to understand if you weren't just trying to claw for the possibility of an error I might have made somewhere in those three sentences. The amount of explanation you've asked from me has really gotten ridiculous. I would accuse you of intentionally trying to obfuscate the issue, but I'm beginning to suspect that you don't really have a choice about it. If you lockpick a chest at the beginning of the game and you get excalibur, combat at the beginning of the game will be too easy. LOL. OK, run along then.
  10. It's because the game should dictate the challenge. If there is going to be really great and challenging combat, then there need to be boundaries on resources of all kinds. Challenge is all about what the player needs to do, and they should be learning to make the correct decisions the entire way, not hitting the pause button in reaction to obvious signals like a Pavlovian dog. All of these things would support tactical combat with limits on pausing by eliminating the need for constant micromanagement of characters. In fact, as these things get better and better, it will become more and more obvious that putting a limit on pauses is a very good idea. And lol at people who want to call real time combat a "twitch" game. As if paying close attention to what is happening and reacting properly in real time is more "twitchy" than smacking a space bar to pause the game when something looks wrong. Yeah, so I wasn't saying that limiting pauses was some sort of "solution" for the need to pause constantly. But if you can eliminate the need to constantly micromanage in order to execute tactics properly, it just doesn't make sense to have unlimited pauses. And if you don't need to pause constantly, then how will limiting or attaching a cost to pauses cause any "unnecessary frustration"?
  11. Excuse me bro, what are you mad about? I wasn't saying anything about anyone else's point of view, and I never said anything would "ruin" anyone's game experience. Exaggerate much? There clearly is a balance argument for both limiting pauses and especially for limiting reloads to checkpoints or nil. Doing either thing sets boundaries which shape the challenge in the game (this is obvious, to be frank, at least with saves and reloads). And you don't know what "illogical" means. I've been plenty logical about the pause issue. It's fine with me if someone wants to do this. I still want to at least see some reasonably balanced difficulty modes where there are checkpoint reloads and also some cost or limit on the command pauses, if that can be balanced OK (and there's no reason why it can't be, or why it would even be that hard to do). Oh yeah seriously, girlfriend. As if limiting the pauses where you can issue commands is some kind of monstrous, ultra revolutionary idea. Get outta here with that ****. Maybe you can see why this isn't the best way to handle game balance?
  12. How would putting some cost or limit on pausing ruin anything? There should be some mechanic in place that would encourage players to think about things and commit to certain tactics, and some penalty for overreacting to every wrinkle that appears. If the cost isn't competence or effort from the player then it should be hard resources, like an extra stamina cost for pausing the game and issuing commands during pause. I frankly don't understand what this ruins, other than the prospect of having really easygoing combat or needing to make really elaborate and precise calculations during combat. Please senoir, explain to me what part of your "experience" you will be missing.
  13. The biggest problem I have with the way combat looks right now is the unlimited pausing. Pausing should be limited by cost, possible frequency, or a combination of both, along with limited duration. At least there should be a reasonably balanced difficulty mode that includes this. With unlimited pausing, players who are always looking for the best possible outcome in combat are going to wind up with "pacing problems" any way you cut it. And maybe commands issued during pause should cost a little bit extra? There could be story affects connected to pause, like going into 'ultra synergy mode' or some ****, and you could have stuff like leadership or synergy stats connected to it (and these things could show up in the story outside of combat as well). It would probably be appropriate, as Jon had mentioned, for players to activate(?) abilities less on certain classes like fighters. In BG2 for example, there are lots of "active" abilites that just add effects to standard fighter actions like making them move faster, hit harder, stun on hit, etc. I'd just like to see more emphasis on spatial calculations and visual effects in combat, where more of the significant stuff that is happening in combat shows up in the playing field. Combat should be more action oriented, meaning the player should have to react more to what is happening as it happens. The solution to every combat encounter shouldn't always be clear at the start of battle, and there should be some game changing abilities or tactics from enemies that require some defensive maneuvers and improvisation from players. If only there would at least be a well balanced difficulty mode where the player would need to use all the game's resources and abilities properly in order to win.
  14. The game needs sexier visuals! Objects, architecture, females, all need to be decorated properly... and maybe with a bit more flair than some of the gothic type stuff I'm seeing from googling Luis Royo. This [external link] is really nice. I do like some middle eastern/japanese style in clothing and ornaments, though in that picture it's not the clothing that is interesting. Nor is it in this one [external link].
  15. Every less significant part in a whole leads to what is most significant. I expect combat to be central in P:E (why else would you have an XP system and all those stats for it?), but I could be wrong. It depends on how the player needs to reach the game winning goals. Like I mentioned before, there are always additional resource mechanics like timers and food, that would affect the dynamic. But that is all moot, anyway, if the devs don't seriously try to balance for a proper checkpoint system or an "ironman" mode. I'm not saying anything contrary to this. I am suggesting that combat should, first of all, be really good. And then all the little non combat actions, the ones whose long term strategic significance is supplementing combat anyway, should be balanced appropriately in relation to combat encounters to help ensure that combat will be really good. The devs should know what their most significant stuff will be, and not fly off the handle in too many different directions with "content", that's all. I was talking about balancing, remember? Don't try to pin opinions on me that aren't mine. Why would I want dialogue to suck? Do I have to quote you my initial post again? You have to balance everything with everything according to what the player can do, will likely do, etc., etc. First time playthroughs, second time playthroughs, constant reloading, and lol. OK, then. "focus solely on making sure everything supports the crap out of combat". Yeah, you're definitely misunderstanding me. I don't know about anyone else, though.
  16. Nothing is going to lie purely in anything else. If combat encounters are ultimately going to be the most strategically significant parts of the game, the other stuff will inevitably lead to combat, and they should be balanced for a proper challenge. The only way to make the other stuff more significant is to make those things more challenging than combat. But, just for fun, lets imagine how the dynamic changes with stuff like timers and hunger. Didn't I just get done saying how combat will contribute to the significance of all the strategic elements in the game? How in hell is this NOT a reason to balance these strategic elements around combat challenges? Before we go too far off track let me remind you what I said in my first post: And that is all I meant. I want the game to be a little more challenging and a little less random with things like character progression. Who actually thinks that arbitrary XP rewards, and arbitrary stat point allocation is good? This example makes no sense. Stealth has always been a combat skill, not even a non-combat skill, and certainly not a separate system. You use stealth to avoid, delay, or gain advantages in combat. The only exception is with quest goals that require stealth, and there it is the same as with lockpicking, where the player gets quest rewards et al.
  17. Bad articulation on my part, but try to understand. What I meant was that lockpicking, as a player action, is not interesting because pretty much the only thing the player has to consider with lockpicking is how many stat points to allocate in the lockpicking skill. Outside the stat sheet, you see a lock, you pick the lock. On top of that, the player isn't going to have a good idea, even with early game experience, how much having lower or higher lockpicking skill will hurt or help them. How else would you balance skills that don't have "dense applications", other than by "tethering" them to the most strategically significant, or "dense"(?) parts of the game? And if combat encounters are the parts of your game that are the most complex and most strategically significant, then 1) more clearly defining how non combat player actions impact combat encounters allows you to better balance the game, and 2) if the player has some idea how choices outside of combat may impact combat encounters, every one of those choices becomes more significant, because you add the complexity of the combat mechanics to each choice (provided the combat encounters look challenging enough for the choices to matter). Of course you still increase the game's complexity when you increase the depth of the game's other "systems", but how interesting do you expect these "systems" to be without combat involved somewhere down the line? Will they even look like systems at all? Obviously the non-combat and combat portions of the game augment each other, or you would have no game system. The more sensibly linked they are, strategically and in the story/setting, the better they will augment each other.
  18. When did I ever say that "a skill level" has to merely affect success/failure die rolls? It just turns out that stuff like lockpicking and trap disarming have worked out this way. Yes, of course it does. That's why the majority of my posts, incuding the ones you've responded to before, have been about making the "non combat" parts of the game more complex. Do you think the devs are just going to do this by magic? It only makes sense that they deliberately branch out their secondary strategic elements from the most strategically complex sections of their game, so that all the pieces fit together. Remember how lockpicking has worked in other RPGs, smart guy? You get gear, consumables, money, quest items, quest solutions, etc. The gear and comsumables help you in combat, the money lets you buy stuff to help you in combat, and the quest items and quest solutions net you XP which will make your characters stronger in combat. Drop the sarcastic attitude, idiot, or you'll remain stupid forever.
  19. Why even bother making a bunch of one-off "skills" that won't affect anything outside of 10 or 100 specific instances of success/failure die rolls? The reason why combat is so interesting is because when the player uses combat abilities, it affects like a hundred different things in combat, i.e. it's more complex than the other stuff. If the "application" of certain skills are not particularly "dense", then these skills should at least be designed with an emphasis on how they will (eventually?) impact combat challenges. How else would you balance them?
  20. Nice video and Q&A. It's good to see the lead designer talking about the importance of balance, i.e. making sure the strategic part of the game is interesting and challenging. I don't want to see too many "options" (the ones you pick from a character sheet) in a CRPG like P:E, if it means that: 1) the most significant strategic choices a player makes are independent from the "action" in the story and setting, and 2) the number of options make it too difficult to ensure a good challenge for the player. On point 2, obviously every "option" you give the player can damage the balance of the game. I'd hate to see the devs throw together a bunch of "options" and "challenges" without being very clear on how all these things will affect with each other (especially in combat). Since combat will be the central part of the game's strategic challenges, character customization options should be closely linked to the specific ways difficulty will scale in the game's combat encounters.
  21. Everything the player does in the game is part of the story. It's just a matter of how interesing and meaningful or retarded and uneven the story turns out to be. If you're going to do incredible feats and get legendary gear, it damn well better appear all over the story. Making the first 5 levels mandatory is a neat idea, but it's less a matter of being mandatory or optional, and more a matter of not making a story that stinks. And a timer should be involved, of course! The mega dungeon should be challenging and risky.
  22. You realize anyone can just click to page 6, read the posts there, and see that you are completely full of ****, don't you? "Fallout Epiphany" my ass, liar. Remember what I was actually responding to? Let me remind you. Of course it can be integral to the story. Unless you need to have some kind of completely linear story that your actions have no impact on. Lol, moron. I'll never understand how people can be so comically false.
  23. But why would you use arbitrary XP rewards instead of rewards that are appropriate for the story and setting? The devs should be moving away from stuff like XP rewards and stat points, and instead, try to innovate better ways to meld the strategic components of their games with their games' "stories" (i.e. inventing new strategic systems along with the stories). That's what practically defines progress in the CRPG genre. If only systems like this could be more complex so that tacked on XP wouldn't be needed anymore. A multitude paths and perhaps a multitude of endings are also necessary, if you want choices to be reflected in your story.(and you can just choose a "canon" ending if you want continuity in expansions/sequels).
  24. at this. This is also why combat spells and combat abilities in general should be more visual and more about controlling space (i.e. have more complex effects than just raising or lowering one or two stats). There are AOE spells, knockback, charging, attacks of opportunity, and that's just scratching the surface. The Diablo games are a pretty good model for what combat in this game should be moving closer to. Ultimately, there is no such thing as a "non-combat challenge". All of a game's strategic components flow into each other, and it is a matter of giving each element the right shape and significance with relation to the rest. If failure in any challenge is not in degrees, then it is itself a degree of failure in relation to a whole. If you have a lot of non game ending challenges that you can't rightly see as degrees of success or failure, then what you have is a fragmented, ****ty game with very little meaningful complexity, like a collection of mini-games.
  25. LOL? How can you read my example of a soft timer and still say this nonsense? Yes, that's a rhetorical question, smart guy. Of course it can be integral to the story. Unless you need to have some kind of completely linear story that your actions have no impact on. Lol, moron. 1) Let me clarify one thing about "global" timers" that I should have made clear before. Every timer is global, period. The differences are when/why the timer starts, and what the timer's effects are (including duration). 2) The only "useful" impact of any strategic component in the game is to make your choices have consequences. Implementing anything in the game can have "unintentional negative consequences", and that's why you design and balance the game. Obviously, the more complex the game is, the harder it's going to be to make everything cohesive. You're basically saying that the devs shouldn't try to implement complex mechanics, because they are very tricky to implement well. Everything you're saying is based on the assumption that any sort of long term timer will a) force players to take one optimal path through the game, or else b) the timer will have no point and add nothing to the game. LOL at you not being able to imagine how failing at some task could matter without effectively ending the game right then and there. What you say only makes sense if you assume the game will be completely linear, which is exactly what we want to avoid with long term timers. You apparently have no ****ing clue what complexity means (everything is all black and white to you idiots). And you can stop pretending like I haven't been pwning you from the very start.
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