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Sylvius the Mad

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Posts posted by Sylvius the Mad

  1. Also- I would like actually not to be able to sell the armor of the fallen enemy- let's say it's destroid due to fight with us and thus worthless. This could also highlight the alternative ways of disposing enemies, like poisoning them in order to keep their armor intact.

    That would be amazing. I would really like that.


    We'd basically be instituting something like the old inanimate object saves from 1st edition AD&D, where wooden shields were sometimes destroyed by fireballs. I love this idea.

    • Like 1
  2. Zero level scaling forces the player to follow a set path, the problem with that is people like freedom of choice.

    Except zero scaling does not force the player to follow a set path.


    It might cause some paths to become very easy if you do them later, and it might cause some paths to be very challenging if you do them sooner. Or, even better, some paths might be harder or easier depending on your party-makeup if you meet them earlier or later.


    Or, and this is the real prize, a shallower overall power curve in the game allows no scaling and player freedom, since the power difference from the minor enemies and more powerful enemies is smaller.


    There should be encounters which, should you meet them too early, kill you easily. There should also be encounters which, once your character has developed, are trivial to defeat. And those trivial encounters shouldn't just vanish because you're stronger. City guards should be a fixed level. Bandits should be a fixed level. Wild dogs should be a fixed level. If I fight Ogres, and learn that I can kill them by doing 15-25 damage, then the next time I meet ordinary Ogres again that should still be true, even if I now do 45-60 damage per attack.

    • Like 3
  3. So there are about two kinds of games.

    1. The first kind, where the game character remains constant, but the player learns the game and can pass more and more difficult hurdles.
    2. The second kind, where the player doesn't learn anything, but the character becomes more and more able to pass hurdles.

    Now, rpg's are always a mix and the second kind of game doesn't actually exist.

    I think you've mischaracterised the second type of game. it isn't that the player doesn't learn anything, but that the player's learning isn't relevant.


    Any game with infinite pausing effectively emulates this. The primary difference between a skilled player and an unskilled player is that a skilled player can make good gameplay decisions faster. So if the game is fully pausable, and the player can take as much time as he would like to make decisions, the impact of differences in player skill are minimised.


    That should be a design goal - to minimise the impact of differences in player skill, but without removing gameplay options. Players should still be allowed to make suboptimal decisions on-purpose, but they shouldn't be forced into sub-optimal decisions by timer-induced panic.

    • Like 1
  4. Good and evil is sort of a matter of perspective, isn't it?


    Like real life, it gets down to choices about being selfish or altruistic, empathic or sociopath, strong or despondent, brave or coward, proactive or apathetic etc.


    What you consider right according to your values is "good", what you consider wrong is "evil".


    Just my $0.25

    This is exactly right. With any decent character design, broad concepts of good and evil largely cease to be relevant. Is defending the profiteering merchant from the angry starving crowd the good or evil option? I'd say it depends on why you're doing it, and Obsidian isn't ever going to know that in advance.

  5. My god, OP your wall of text reads sort of similar to another proposal I read some other user come up with under a different thread except it was for lockpicking, you end with a ludicerously overcomplicated system, BG was just fine, your idea about weight for money I think is also fine (maybe under HC mode) but everything else!!?? Yikes.

    For the record, I really liked that lockpicking proposal Perhaps not for PE, but it sounded fun.


    Different strokes for different folks. If your idea of fun gameplay is to stand there doing nothing for several rounds until all conditions line up and then execute one action before standing there again doing nothing until those conditions line up again, rock on. :thumbsup: To me, that would suck.

    It's a party-based game. You would be busy executing the plan to herd your enemies to their deaths. Your mage character would be waiting, yes, but you wouldn't.


    In a single-character game, though, yes, I would enjoy what you describe, though I understand that not everyone would. But that doesn't matter, because PE isn't a single-character game.


    And this is the biggest problem with every edition of D&D save the much maligned 4E (and, hopefully, Next - which, while nothing like 4E, has the devs constantly talking about this very point) - every class should stand alone as fun, competent, competitive and playable in it's own right... especially in a game as combat-heavy as D&D... and D&D never really managed to get this right, save one time (almost - not perfectly) and that's when they get slapped silly by a loud minority of their "fans."

    I would only agree with that in a system where a character was necessarily stuck with his class. If a Thief was always a Thief and there was nothing he could do about it, then yes, the Thief had better be fun to play.


    But that wasn't always true in AD&D or 3E D&D. 3E's multiclassing rules basically reduced Rogue to something you'd take a few levels in for the skill points or backstabbing. And in 1st and 2nd edition, dual-classing was available (to humans only, for no reason I can explain) to add a new class whenever the old one began to offer diminishing returns.


    However, I will absolutely not agree with the premise that "every class should stand alone as fun, competent, competitive and playable in it's own right" at every level of advancement. One of the strengths of the early editions (which was, to some degree, removed in 3E) was that some classes were more effective at low levels, while others were more effective at high levels.


    Giving me hypotheticals on how it could have NOT worked is irrelevant to my point - in Infinity Engine games, rogues were excessively unnecessary. You took them because you WANTED them, not because you at all needed them.

    Thieves did benefit some types of parties. A mage-heavy party, particularly a low-level one, did tend to get killed by springing traps, so disarming those was valuable (traps on chests seemed especially deadly).

  9. It isn't a goal of ours to limit a character's combat role by class, but it is a goal to make every character class have one role that it's easy for them to excel in. For example, most IE games (being derived from AD&D 2nd Edition until IWD2) effectively threw thief characters into the garbage bin, combat-wise.

    1. I love this answer.

    2. The Thief rules in 2nd edition AD&D basically demanded dual-classing to make the character viable at higher levels. Thief-Mages worked very well (non-magical stealth was remarkably handy for a Mage with Illusion as his prohibited school). That said, Thieves could still be effective combatants in BG because of how over-powered archery was.

  10. Whatever verbage we feel like using, a mage character should be useful every "round". Firing off a spell and then being forced to plink away with your 1D4 sling while you wait for something to recharge is the epitome of suck.

    I completely disagree. Having the magic system designed so that there's always something to do seems like busywork.


    If my mage can wait for all of the enemies to be herded into a group and then kill them all with a single spell, that's way cooler than constant casting of smaller spells.


    Fighters do something every round. Mages don't. Partly because that sort of design would dramatically limit magical power. There aren't going to be any spells that kill everyone if the mage is expected to be casting constantly.

  11. Bulky, flat, long, medium, small - if you can just recall the type of slot it's in, you'd find it instantly still, you can sort the items within their own sizes. If you're going to rearrange your whole inventory because you keep all the potions first, arrows second, armors third and weapons last in terms of where they are in your inventory left to right, and you just found a new stack of potions, that's usually quite a bit of resorting.

    Hopefully you'd have the foresight to leave gaps to allow each grouping to grow.


    In NWN, for example, the only thing I keep on the front page of the inventory is potions and anything reguarly swapped out. If I don't have enough potions to fill the space, then there's empty space there. Plot items are kept on the second page, and so on..

    This system easily allows the tetris system to exist in it by just expanding all the slots into small slots. There could be an option to have auto sorting off and expand it.

    Being able to turn auto-sorting off would be terrific. I remember how much I liked the inventory system in the original Dungeon Siege, but then the expansion ruined it by adding a mandatory auto-sort feature. I never did finish the expansion.

    Actually, that makes me realize that the tetris system, just with autosorting, would work as well with the packs I proposed simply giving a volume unit in small squares.

    Well, there you go. As mentioned, that inventory system already exists in Dungeon Siege: Legends of Aranna.

    Anyways, what do you think of the other ideas?

    I like the idea of automatic money changing at merchants. I do not like the idea of decimal currency; that's entirely too modern a concept. If Britons could manage farthings and guineas, gamers can handle something more organic than decimal currency.


    Anyway, I'm glad we reached agreement on Inventory Tetris with an optional Auto-Sort.

  12. The proposed system is essentially tetris that automatically sorts itself, keeping the player from needing to be in the inventory forever while also allowing the system to take volume into account.

    Taking volume into account ins't the only benefit of tetris, though. The manual sorting is itself a strength of inventory tetris, and you've discarded it.


    I like tetris because it lets me put everything where I want it, and it stays there until I move it. Having to go browsing through my inventory to find things is a waste of time, and having to do it every time is a bigger waste of time than periodic sorting.

    • Like 1

    What do you think? Would you want to follow a set story and be able to influence it not as a hero but a companion

    First of all, I'd like to say that I think this had already been done. It was called Dragon Age 2. Anders was the main character.


    Second, I would hate this. I don't really like following a set story, let alone one in which I don't even play a central role. Something I've said before with regard to set stories I think bears repeating. If the PC is going to be dragged along on a pre-set path whether he likes it or not, he should still be the one in control. I compare it to the difference between a passenger on a bus and the driver of that bus. Both necessarily follow the same route with no possible deviation, but the driver is the one who makes it happen. I would much rather be the driver than a passenger.

  14. For individual character inventories, the NWN inventory system was just about perfect. It was manually sortable, the grid accounted for the problem of large items, and anything in there could be placed on the hotbar for quick use. Aside from perhaps being too large (4 pages might be better than 6), it was brilliant.


    For shared inventory, I have to refer to the only game I can recall handling group encumbrance well, and that's Wizardry 8.


    I'm not a big fan of shared inventory, so I would rather individual inventories in an NWN style (weight + tetris).

  15. I'd go for interjections versus having to independently select a character and use a talk command, it's better for conversation flow and you're less likely to miss out on something cool, it's pretty much the PS:T method :thumbsup:

    But you'll miss out on whole conversations if your PC isn't the sort to talk to that guy. But if you have a companion who would, and you can have companions act as party spokesperson, then that content isn't missed.

  16. I think we are kind of at that. Even with all the stretch goals we've reached we have 5 companion slots and 7 potential companions. That's with the two additional companions from the stretches, so originally we would have had JUST enough to fill out the party. Unless I'm really misreading stuff.


    You have 5 companions plus your MC. Initially there were 5 classes, but now there are 2 more. That implies 1 companion of each class - and they've also said that each companion is of a different class, so yeah. You ARE limited in your options - the only clear way to get two of one class in the party is when you make your MC.

    Right, but if the classes are not restricted to specific roles, then we still have some party construction options. Even if there were only 5 companions, so a full party always had the same 5 people plus the PC, we could still have some tanks or no tanks, or some ranged DPS or no ranged DPS, or some crowd-control or no crowd-control.


    But if the classes are limited to just their intended role, then that party of the same 5 people is always going to be basically the same party. That's no fun.

    It'll be like most BioWare games post BG2 for me - replayability is hurt by the limited number of companion combinations (which was only kept at all fresh by limiting it to 2 or 3 your can bring with you (or 1, in Jade Empire.)

    But look at how much more limiting DAO would have been if only Alistair could tank, or if Wynne was always a healer.


    One related problem that pops up in a lot of modern games (DA2 does it) is encounter design always favouring a specific distribution of roles within the party, but I'm just going to assume Obsidian isn't going to do that, because it's crazy. But based on Tim's responses to the Reddit questions, I now think this question warrants asking.

  17. This just feels like a 3E vs. balance argument again.


    People who like 3E like character creation freedom. They don't like limits on what they can make They love multi-classing, min/maxing, and using skills and such in unique and unusual ways.

    Yes. Building characters in new and different and interesting ways is fun.

    This isn't wrong - but it does cause a problem for game balance.

    Balance isn't something I think the game designers should really spend much time on, specifically since I don't want scaled content either. If the content isn't scaled, then Obsidian is already not in control of balance.

    Since they chose to go with classes, I have to believe that balance and clearly defined roles are exactly what they want. They have said as much, I remember specifically in the Reddit questions that Tim Cain answered.

    We might be reading too much into his specific word choice. As such, I think it's valuable to raise the question of roles-by-class explicitly.

    And since they are looking to balance things, especially for tactical choices with companions and such, classes being built for specific roles seems like a no-brainer. They are doing it.

    But without that many companion characters, that risks limiting players to just a handful of viable party constructions.

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