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Found 5 results

  1. A simple thread for community brainstorming, suggesting possible feats or traits that allow different builds and methods of role-playing. Weak of body/Strong of mind You were born the runt of the litter, weak of body and with a Soul that was broken and shattered, and you suffered. But you would not give up, you would not die and you would not accept that only the strong deserve life. You fought against this injustice, you struggled tooth and claw to survive, against everything that life could throw at you. Your resolve became as iron, and your will was unbreakable. Effect: Might suffers a substantial penalty but all Soul powers and spells (but not physical melee and ranged attacks) gain a significant damage bonus from Resolve, allowing the classic archetype of the frail but powerful spellcaster to be built. Restriction: Can only be taken by spellcasters, Ciphers, Wizards, Druids and such.
  2. I've mentioned Weapon perks before, but I thought it warrants a more in-depth explanation. What are these exactly? In short they'd be similar to character feats (D&D) or perks (Fallout), only attached to a weapon (not all of them would be beneficial, however), e.g. 1) Harder to parry against (Flamberge); 2) Tiring to use (Greatswords); 3) Light (Smallsword); 4) Can misfire (Firearms); 5) Can be concealed (Daggers); 6) Ignores armour (Firearms); 7) Increased critical chance (Rapiers). How would it be decided which weapon has which perk? Here are a few methods : 1) Some would be attached to a certain weapon type (or subtype) automatically, e.g. - all weapons categorized as Greatswords would have the Tiring to use perk by default. Flamberges (being a subtype of Greatswords), however, would additionally possess the Harder to parry against perk. 2) Others would be a result of training (or lack of one), e.g. - a character proficient in the use of Greatswords ignores the Tiring to use perk attached to them; - someone not skilled in the proper use of rapiers can't exploit the Increased critical chance perk they possess; - a particularly skilled combatant can add perks to a weapon, e.g. adding the Harder to parry against perk to rapiers. 3) Crafting could add or remove perks, e.g. - forging a Greatsword from a rare metal results in removing the Tiring to use perk from it; - conversely, crafting a weapon from poor quality materials could add a detrimental perk to it (or not add the default beneficial one). Perks would also allow the players to quickly asses weapons' strengths and weaknesses.
  3. There's no mention of feats on the Wiki yet. I'm hoping/guessing it's something that will be implemented in one form or another. In the meantime, let's discuss feats we'd like to see in Project Eternity. I'll start. (And I'm using 3E terms here). Thug - Add STR or INT bonus (whichever is highest) to all intimidate checks. - Bonus to crafting and deploying Thrown/Grenade-like/Splash weapons. Extortion [General Feat] - Prerequisite: Thug feat. - Like the pickpocket skill, but make an intimidate check against friendly or neutral commoners. - Success = A few GP or item. - Failure = Victim turns hostile (or alerts authorities). Automatic failure on second successful attempt. - Usage: Selected. 1/Day per 4 ranks of intimidate. Dutch Courage [General Feat] - Prerequisite: Thug feat. - Quaff an ale and gain a temporary +1 bonus vs fear, +1 Taunt, +1 damage. - Penalty: -1 AC, -1 Concentration, -1 Intelligence - Quaff wine or spirits for a +2 or +3 respective bonus (and -2 or -3 penalty). - Need to rename "Dutch" to something more game specific. - Multiple usage subject to intoxication. Summon War Dog [General Feat] - Prerequisite: Thug feat. - Summon savage dog that goes berserk in battle. - Stats scale with character level. - Usage: 1/Day What feats would YOU like to see in Project Eternity?
  4. Okay, I can tell I'm going to make a fool of myself and my limited knowledge of the DnD system used by the games that have inspired Project Eternity, but oh well. Traits and statistics. The qualities and numbers, respectively, that define our characters. What would we like to see in Project Eternity? It might be intuitive to think that Project Eternity will mirror the classic cRPGs in this regard, but there is always room for innovation. ============================================================================= Statistics broadly fall into two categories: basic and derived. Basic statistics tend to be ones that you the player can directly change during character creation or leveling, whereas derived statistics are things like Hit Points, Fatigue, Mana/Magicka, saving throws, and combat statistics like attack/to hit and armor class/defense scores. I'll admit, I'm not an expert on the latter in the DnD system (though I generally find the trifecta of Hit Points, Fatigue, and Mana to be sufficient), and this post is primarily concerned with the former. Among the most commonly used statistics in video games are those concerning fundamental attributes/ability scores; Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma in the familiar DnD system. This scheme is tried and true, but there is no reason I see why it cannot be deviated from. It's not as simple as coming up with words that sound nice, though; if one attribute is less utilized than the rest, it will inevitably become a worthless dump stat. The current system works because each ability score is equally integral, and I like to think they can be further broken down to reveal their true essence. Evidently one could probably decompose "attributes" endlessly in this manner ("what is running speed but the combination of leg muscle and reflexes?", etc.), but at some point we must draw a line and ultimately ask whether the groupings are logical. Here is a likely incomplete list of what these actually measure in my opinion, or rather things that an ideal system could possibly measure: Physical: Raw physique (which influences melee damage, ability to perform physically demanding tasks, and maximum encumbrance), endurance (the attrition rate of fatigue), balance, speed (in the form of acceleration and agility), "dexterity" (as I describe manual skill and/or hand-eye coordination), reflexes (reaction speed, dodging), "constitution" (innate resistance versus poison and disease), sensory acuity, and physical attractiveness. Mental: Willpower (volition), concentration (focusing of attention, and I suppose discipline is also related), creativity (use of the imagination), memory (though this is typically not included in video games), reasoning (including all high-level cognitive function), wisdom (for the sage archetype just as reasoning is for the tinkerer), awareness (by which I mean perceptual awareness of surroundings), intuition (which I suppose is social awareness), charisma (persuasive ability), and I suppose something that represents degree of attunement to magic or whatever. Obviously I have just included magic as a mere afterthought, so the system isn't perfect, but I think that touches on quite a few things the DnD system leaves out, or perhaps includes in the form of traits instead of statistics. Is there some way we can better group these characteristics, that will give us more precise control over our character, or open up new possibilities? Do we really need separate derived statistics like saving throws, or can ability scores be rearranged to render them obsolete? Historically, some aspects such as memory and creativity have gone completely ignored, in theory left up to the player I suppose; is that how it should be? Is character movement too neglected, and we should actually add agility separate from manual dexterity (which would still be useful for ranged attack and trade skills). Or perhaps add an Awareness attribute (I can hear the hardcore DnD crowd wincing)? Are balance and concentration best left as passive skills, and sensory acuity best left as trait modifiers? ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The other predominant form of statistic is the "skill", which can denote combat skills, trade skills, survival skills, social skills, among others. This is one part of the DnD system that I find particularly deficient, with little distinction made between the very different types of skills. Typically, at any rate, these skills contain some kind of ability check (reflecting the above attributes) and are leveled up through experience. So far I believe we know that Project Eternity will contain trade skills unlike some of the other cRPGs we know, but we don't know much else. I'm not going to go into detail regarding which skills I'd like to see as that deserves its own thread and this one is long enough, but there is one thing I wish to harp on with regard to skills. Skills in real life are the result of knowledge and experience. Disappointingly, however, I have yet to see a game really get this right. Many games just forgo knowledge altogether, and ultimately become a game of how quickly you can collect X experience orbs to level your character, or at least their skills. While I can see this for overall leveling, for individual skills it just makes little sense to me; I think leveling all manners of skills should have a knowledge component and experience component. To this end, there should be teachers/trainers throughout the world along with a wealth of books or another medium by which knowledge is transferred, which is just as important to character advancement as grinding. That's something I'd really like to see with Project Eternity. Also with regard to skills, in particular practical skills, I'd like to see some kind of profession/occupation field on the character sheet if the trade skill system is as good as I'm envisioning (which for one thing would be better than vanilla Skyrim's). Most tradeskills should involve multiple steps of transforming raw materials into finished goods, but each of these steps doesn't necessarily need its own skill for leveling. In fact, some steps of the process could have no skill check (yet still give experience), but complexity is immersive. Just as a brief overview, I could see various DnD-esque skills but a wider variety. Individual combat maneuvers (parry, disarm, shield bash), mercantile skills (appraise, haggle, bribe), stealth skills (pickpocket, sneak), various persuasive tactics (bluff, intimidate, charm, deceive, etc.), leadership skills (rally and other things to make up for lack of bards), survival skills, along with trade skills. Perhaps movement skills like swimming, climbing, and jumping, or perhaps those would be best left as derived statistics. ================================================================================== Whereas a statistic is quantitative, a trait is qualitative (though it often has a numerical impact on a relevant statistic). However, traits can range from racial bonuses and penalties to feats, and also conceivably include physical and personality traits. Notably, keenness of the senses has usually been relegated to trait status, which I suppose makes some sense since they can't be readily improved. On a side note, why limit it to race? Perhaps we should choose our characters age, height, and weight during character creation, and those should confer certain physical and mental bonuses and penalties. More importantly, I'd personally like to see the use of traits widened substantially in Project Eternity. I know this would be quite difficult to implement and nigh impossible to perfect, but perhaps have us select from a list of traits in character creation that merely influence what kinds of dialogue options are open to our character? Things like attractiveness (if that doesn't become an attribute), sense of humor, body language, etc. ================================================================================= Even with all the traits and statistics in the world, there are some aspects of characters that can't be captured in numbers or single words (here I maybe reveal that I sort of come from a roleplaying angle), and it would be cool if there were various ways to define one's character and some aspects of their past outside of "We choose your character's story, and you put a name and a face on them". Perhaps things like socioeconomic status, level of education, religious beliefs, etc. or am I asking too much? What character creation/progression system would you like to see in Project Eternity? Does the classic DnD system cut it for you? Should attributes be rearranged? Should skills be grouped in any way, or should they all draw on the same allocation pool? Should skills in Project Eternity reflect both knowledge and experience, or should they stick to experience? Do you wish for more freedom in defining your character's various non-quantifiable traits? Did you actually read this whole post, or did I waste my time writing it?
  5. I know that I am odd in this regard, which is why I make no claims that my view is in any way representative of the population present on these forums or elsewhere. This is a personal rant, and I say rant because it comes entirely from an emotional need I posses for which I have no logical explanation. I'm posting it here because if I don't, and this game fails to reach the admittedly high bar I set on this topic, I'll have only myself to blame for never having tried to make a difference. This way when it doesn't meet my requirements I can simply resume grumbling to myself, and I'm only out my donation money instead of potential years of self-loathing and regret. Here's what I'm looking for in a RPG (or any game, really): A very large part of why I play RPG's is for their character customization - it's not the only consideration, but it is almost always the deciding factor in buying a new game (of late, the only "new" game I've purchased is Skyrim - with which I was disappointed in the character customization options, but it was better than average). Story matters, but I find the stories in most games weak in comparison to most books, so that's a secondary concern. What I have apparently become addicted to is creating unique and interesting characters. This falls into two roughly equal segments: visual and mechanical. Visual encompasses both the physical appearance of the character, as well as specifics to what sorts of items and spells that character is "allowed" to use (ex: if I make a character who's theme is "fire mage", I voluntarily do not use any spells that do not fit that theme - ice or water being the classic examples, but it can be more, less, or differently limited depending on the complete character concept). Visual also encompases most of personality with regards to character creation (things like voice selection can be involved as well, as can weapon preferences, skill selection, and even feats/abilities on occasion) - this means that my characters face (or portrait, or general physical appearance) must fit the concept I have of them in my head. I cannot explain why personality is so important to me, but it is absolutely crucial - If I cannot fit a character's appearance to their personality that character doesn't get made and I go back to the drawing board (for this reason, it drives me crazy that it's basically impossible to find or make a smiling face/portrait/etc in any game... Would it kill developers to have a "Default Facial Expression" option/slider? Why must my character frown/stare blankly at everything? I know the models are capable of smiling). It may sound like I'm requiring a high degree of graphical fidelity here - nothing could be further from the truth. I require only as much graphics/artwork as is necessary for me to "see" (as in visualize/imagine/personify/etc) my character in whatever format the game presents him/her - often, high fidelity graphics get in the way of this, as they add details that are not present in my mental image, whereas lower quality graphics leave those details open to the imagination. The other side of the coin, mechanical design & customization, encompases everything you probably think it does: Classes, Racial Bonuses (though not looks), Attacks/Abilities/Spells, Stats, Skills, etc. My design goal with any given character usually follows this pattern: Think of an interesting combination of mechanics, then design a character (visually) to match those mechanics. This leads to characters that have looks, personality, and abilities all revolving around a core theme - they (usually) have one or two "signature" abilities upon which their entire character concept was created. I'll create them with this in mind, then play it out to the final extreme or until the concept proves flawed in some way I didn't originally notice (if it's viable but I've misplaced a point somewhere I'll either re-create them or use console commands to correct the error, depending on what's available). In some cases it works the other way around, wherein I'll create a personality or visual style that inspires a slightly different mechanical perspective that I deem worth exploring. Characters created based on mechanical innovations become more and more interesting as the game progresses and they gain access to the full scope of their potential ("growing into their destined role," if you want to dramatize it... which of course we do, this being an RPG forum), but characters based on a visual style or personality are the most fun to work with in character creation and during plot defining moments (these tend to be the ones I don't actually play, just design). With regards to the actual mechanics of the game, and how classes/abilities/skills/etc interact with each other, it should be obvious that I prefer a highly flexible system. My ideal would actually be a classless system, but a decently done classed based system can be almost as good (restrictions are necessary to make character customization interesting - it's the working around and manipulation of those restrictions that makes mechanical customization fun). That said, multiclassing is basically required. It can be left out if the primary emphasis is on abilities/spells/feats and not class mechanics (to employ a simile: The classes are like differently shaped container for legos, where a roughly equal number of uniform legos, or feats/skills/abilities, can fit into any given container). If the emphasis is on the parts that make up the character (the feats/skills/abilities), rather than it's shell (the class), and these parts can be interchanged fairly freely between classes (with some exceptions) then multiclassing isn't required, but is still beneficial. It's my opinion that this "focus on the parts" view is simply good game design - it detracts nothing from those who don't care about character customization, but will keep people like me (assuming there are others like me...) buying as many expansion packs as you care to produce. When you do make expansions, adding classes is a pretty common theme - however, if these classes are insular (not subscribing to the "focus on parts" view), then you're only really adding one or two play styles... if you've done it the way I'm suggesting you've potentially exponentially increased the number of available character customization options (and therefore play styles) while achieving all the same benefits that adding a class normally accomplishes. Now, by the fact that I've taken the time to both think and type all this out in great detail, you can probably infer how big a deal it is to me, but just in case let me underline the point: I still play NWN2. Not only do I still play it, It's practically the only game I play. My computer uses video card drivers specifically selected for their compatibility with it. I have over a hundred characters created (since the last time I had to do a reinstall... a bit over a year). I've essentially memorized the dialog for the entire game (not so much on the expansions, as I prefer to start at level 1-3 and don't really care for SoZ [side note: MotB is a work of art, give Mr. Zeits my warmest and sincerest regards for that please.]). I've also modded the game with Kerendin's PrC Pack, which adds 49 classes (and is still in active development), and Races of Faerun which adds something like a dozen races, as well as complete overhauls like the "OC Makeover SoZ Edition" and Wulverheim (these last to add some variety to the game while I play through yet another character concept). Neverwinter Nights 2 (with mods) is the closest thing I've ever found to satisfying my craving for deep character customization, and even it is horribly flawed (by my standards). I'm not asking you to fulfill my every wish with Project Eternity, what I'm really asking for (more like begging for) is a replacement for NWN2. I am so damn tired of that game in every regard except character customization (and I think mathematically I may be approaching the point where I've done all feasible combinations of mechanics). I'm desperate for something with enough character customization to allow me to put away NWN2 for good, something with a fresh plot and new as-of-yet unmemorized dialog, new character interactions that give me more fine tuned options for defining and expressing my character's personality (the city watch / thieves guild segment of NWN2 kills off 90% of my character concepts unless I just grit my teeth and act completely out of character - it's destroys immersion and could be the subject of a completely separate rant all by itself). If I were a rich man I'd throw buckets of money at you just for that little consolation, but I'm not and so all I can do is give what I can afford in a desperate gamble, hoping that the people who gave me NWN2 can give me something to replace it. It feels good to get all that off my chest, as it's been stewing in and ever-expanding pool of frustration for some time now. If I had the time and skill I'd make my own game, if I had the money I'd pay someone to do it for me, alas I have neither. The only good that's come out of this is that I've discovered my skill addiction obsession can be put to productive use by churning out NPCs for my DM to put into our far-too-infrequent D&D games. That's not quite as satisfying, but it's kept me away from NWN2 for about a month running... Though after writing this I can already tell that streak isn't going to last the week (if it weren't 4am it wouldn't last the night). As I said when I started - I needed to say this for my own reasons, and even if it doesn't have an effect on this game it's still acted as a pressure release for me (and maybe it will influence something else down the line - who knows). That said, thank you for taking the time to read it and I do hope it leaves an impression (other than one of mild insanity - I know I got that one across but I hope some of the subtler points made it as well).
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