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Realistic hunger, thirst, fatigue, sleep


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I may have missed it there is a lot going on here but I haven't seen this addressed. I was wondering how this subject would be handled. Most games of this type do have the characters get tired when they fight but few have them get hungry or thirsty. I often add mods to games to change that. However it needs to be handled very carefully. When in a fight situation adreniline kicks in and you are concentrating on not getting killed and on killing the enemy. After the fight is won then you should be tired, certainly thirsty and possibly hungry.

 

Forced sleep I don't usually include because it is intrusive and in my opinion silly because if someone is trying to kill you you are not going to think about sleeping.

 

I think eating should at least increase your stamina and even health. We will probably have potion that help with fatigue and health and magic but just having a drink of water as you wander the wilderness, delve into caves and ruins would be help and be natural. I know it would probably be tricky to implement as once you spot an enemy or are spotted by an enemy you won't be thinking about anything but the battle.

 

In BG games I loved taking my party to a nice inn after a big battle even if they actually didn't need to eat or even sleep. It just seemed the right thing to do. Part of the role play for me. A nice meal, a little conversation, a comfy room to rest in is something any adventurer would want I think. Even just setting up a camp and chatting around a camp fire about how well you did or how to do it better next time seems natural to me. Cleaning and repairing your weapons, checking your spells, maybe learning new ones.

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 I have but one enemy: myself  - Drow saying


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The farthest I'd personally go is to just roll them all into one, call it weariness or whatever - assuming sleep isn't abusable like the IE games, then you can reasonably apply a stacking penalty on any checks every 24 hours or so.

 

I personally not infrequently eat just the once a day. :p

 

 

Fake edit: I'm pretty strongly against the idea of food increasing stats in any fashion, and food being a healing item is close behind. Food is a maintenance item, nothing more.

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I would be fine with food/drink recovering a bit of health, or, maybe temporarily reducing a battle/weary fatigue penalty instead, say.

What I don't want, however, is stuff like hunger/thirst/fatigue to equal death if you neglect it too long. Slowly increasing (or static) stat penalties, sure. But death for lack of a jug of water would make it far too much micromanaging for me.

Edited by LadyCrimson
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“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts
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I think it's generally taken for granted that every time your party rests in games like BG, whether it be in the wilderness or in an inn, they are eating and drinking. The same goes for the downtime while travelling, I think it's generally assumed the characters are performing the essential actions of living.

 

I think having a hunger/thirst system would bog the game down too much, we don't really need that level of micro-management. If we're going that far, why not go all the way and implement a system of repairing armour and weapons between battles? Each 'realism' feature introduced will take valuable time away from the story.

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as it was nice to have a hardcore mode in new vegas i can't think of it being in crpg with a party of up to 6 people, each of whom drinking and eating at different times. it would be an option as party wide checks so you don't have to check every single member. skills/perks influencing those checks could be averaged. at least sleeping should be in, with eating and drinking as an option to be enabled.

 

what i like to see are special food recipes or drugs with both positive and negative effects.

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In New Vegas it was kind of immersive to play with the hard core mode on. Some of my favourite moments from that game is actually finding clean water, as weird as it sounds. I'm not sure if it would result in the same thing in this type of game, or just become another resource managment mechanic. Not that that's inherently bad though.

Edited by Continuity
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If the game follows the BG model the party will need to rest after battles. After a really hard battle I found I needed to rest. I disagree with the idea that food is purely maintenance. What you can make you sleepy or perk you up. What you eat or drink is important. For me seeing your party and other NPCs behave like real people does add to the immersion and fun of the game. Role playing to me is a lot more than being the greatest warrior, mage, thief, assassin.

 

Perhaps it could or should be tied to a hardcore level or something that is optional. I like options.

 

I hope, beg, plead for a modding toolkit because mods do give players more options. That way you can add the things you like to your game.

 I have but one enemy: myself  - Drow saying


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hunger and thirst

Interesting drinks and food with some fluff text could give better idea about the setting, but concidering there would be party of up to [insert speculation here] characters, feeding them all would be a chore so it should be avoided. Things like that work best in games with one character focused on survival (F:NV)

 

fatigue

It could be just done in manner of amount of actions character could do per day, with any system like vascian or just stamina, there is not much need for specific fatigue stat in a party-based game.

 

sleep

Usual problem with that is that time in game and time in player's life are asymmetric, which leads to stupid gameplay where player could finish some dungeon and quest and wants to go kill more stuff, but his character has full "sleep" bar after an hour of activity.

 

Overall when it comes to stuff like hunger and sleep people think about immersion first and gameplay second, while with party-based game we should think about gameplay and what all that would add to combat first.

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I'd be fine with a stripped down "needs" mechanic but I'm not sure that a New Vegas style system would suit the isometric perspective, you're not quite in the world to the same degree, having said that, if they could make it optional then what do I care :)

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I'm quite against this. Sleeping and resting, yes, because they require a party camp, an inn, a house, somewhere for the party to gather and roleplay. They give the player a chance to explore the companions at a relaxed pace. I'd like to see sleeping and resting mechanics support character interactions, rather than as a measure of character effectiveness.

 

Eating and drinking, no. I have no problem assuming the characters are doing these things anyway. I've not played FO:NV but I can see how in a postapocalyptic environment where food and safe water are scarce keeping track of them adds to the atmosphere of the game, but unless they're important to the atmosphere or the plot, I'd rather we assume my character and NPCs can take care of that stuff themselves.

 

That said, I'm all for a modding toolkit for those who do want it. My fun shouldn't spoil yours.

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The thirst meter mechanic in New Vegas worked extremely well imo. It drastically improved the game by improving "atmosphere" and immersion.

 

It also made sense and fit into the scenario, seeing that the game takes place in the desert and that uncontaminated water was somewhat rare.

 

So, should realistic hunger, thirst, fatigue, sleep be included in the game? Maybe, maybe not. It depends on the game and setting imo.

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I may have missed it there is a lot going on here but I haven't seen this addressed. I was wondering how this subject would be handled. Most games of this type do have the characters get tired when they fight but few have them get hungry or thirsty. I often add mods to games to change that. However it needs to be handled very carefully. When in a fight situation adreniline kicks in and you are concentrating on not getting killed and on killing the enemy. After the fight is won then you should be tired, certainly thirsty and possibly hungry.

Yes. IMO, there's a really fine line between fun and pointless reality sim play. Having to eat and drink can be fun, but it still walks that line and sometimes crosses it. People who eat and drink also have to stop and relieve themselves on occasion too. But thankfully, we don't see many games that require you to go to the bathroom 3 or 4 times a day, because that would be retarded. And not fun at all.

 

I think eating should at least increase your stamina and even health. We will probably have potion that help with fatigue and health and magic but just having a drink of water as you wander the wilderness, delve into caves and ruins would be help and be natural. I know it would probably be tricky to implement as once you spot an enemy or are spotted by an enemy you won't be thinking about anything but the battle.

Agreed. If I were to design such a system I would make it so that eating and drinking periodically throughout the day gives you bonusses. And if you go 8 hours or so without eating/drinking then those bonusses simply go away. But that would be the extent of it. Taking it a step further and actually Penalizing players simply because they didn't stop and look at the clock and take their rations on time, seems like an unnecessarily cumbersome gameplay mechanic.

 

 

Forced sleep I don't usually include because it is intrusive and in my opinion silly because if someone is trying to kill you you are not going to think about sleeping.

I don't know. I think the old IE games did it fine. Sleep wasn't "forced" on you, but you did eventually get that annoying fatigue icon on your portrait and you did suffer a penalty to your skills if you didn't eventually rest. I often times just ignored it and pressed on, since it was really minor (something like -1 to your attacks and saves. big deal)

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Could be done in a Mount&Blade-fashion. You don't have to micro-manage your party by making them eat all the time, but you do have to bring food in your inventory. This takes up inventory-space. As time goes by, the amount of food decreases automaticly. If you run out, companions are pissed off. Or you die (if you want it to be done that way).

Edited by Amused
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I think the reason why hardcore mode worked in New Vegas was because it was understandable why food and water would be rare. In most RPGs it is assumed that water is readily available and rations are lightweight and inexpensive enough to not need to be tracked manually. If something does come up regarding food and water I would prefer it to be as part of a specific situation (lost at sea, crossing a desert) rather than a meter that needs to be monitored constantly in-game.

 

Fatigue and sleep depend on the way the gameplay is set up. In systems closer to D&D like Baldurs Gate it makes sense that you need to rest because you need to recharge your abilities from time to time. In Dragon Age there are no abilities that require a rest before they can be used again, so resting becomes more abtract with the seperate camp area.

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I'm not sure it's within the scope of the budget but I would dearly welcome a "Hardcore mode" ala New Vegas. Obviously it would need to be re-tooled to fit an isometric, fantasy game. But one could certainly apply things to the travelling system for example which some old-school games have done (having to bring rations, possible to catch diseases and so forth).

 

It's not hugely important in the grand scheme of things for me but it would be a welcome addition nonetheless. I think one of the biggest kinks to work out will need to be the resting system though (assuming we're not going the regenerating health route, which I hope we won't). To prevent players from abusing it and so forth. Having to buy food and stuff would help a bit there (though it would not be enough on its own obviously).

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I think the reason why hardcore mode worked in New Vegas was because it was understandable why food and water would be rare. In most RPGs it is assumed that water is readily available and rations are lightweight and inexpensive enough to not need to be tracked manually. If something does come up regarding food and water I would prefer it to be as part of a specific situation (lost at sea, crossing a desert) rather than a meter that needs to be monitored constantly in-game.

This. I just can't say it better.

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If something does come up regarding food and water I would prefer it to be as part of a specific situation (lost at sea, crossing a desert) rather than a meter that needs to be monitored constantly in-game.

 

I agree. Having to manage survival needs during a specific quest or other situation could be an interesting challenge. I'm not looking for quotidien micro-management.

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Could be done in a Mount&Blade-fashion. You don't have to micro-manage your party by making them eat all the time, but you do have to bring food in your inventory. This takes up inventory-space. As time goes by, the amount of food decreases automaticly. If you run out, companions are pissed off. Or you die (if you want it to be done that way).

 

Betrayal at Krondor, my first cRPG, did that. You and your party members had to carry food and the party ate once a day. The food gradually diminished. When you camped at night weapons were automatically cleaned and repaired. No actual management was needed by the player. If you went for a period of time without food you did begin to starve. As I said I never used sleep mods because they were in my opinion unrealistic and broke immersion instead of helping. Depending on the game I had my party or PC if solo rest.

 

In the BG games and some others I often did wish when going to an inn or residence that my group could have a meal. It just seemed to fit the scenario. Often they could have a drink. I remember in Arcanum you could get drunk.

 

Things have been suggested for the game that do not add to the as far as moving through a quest line or fighting in a dungeon crawl or chasing bandits but do add to the feeling of the game, making the characters seem more real and adding to the role play aspect. It is a matter of balance and of taste.

 

You have to go and sell off your loot or at least store it some where so why not take the time for a little rest and relaxation? Why not take the time to hear a bard sing or even do a bit of singing yourself? Why not have a little fun? Does the game need to be all slash, hack, bash? There are plenty of games out where you can do that.

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 I have but one enemy: myself  - Drow saying


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I think the reason why hardcore mode worked in New Vegas was because it was understandable why food and water would be rare. In most RPGs it is assumed that water is readily available and rations are lightweight and inexpensive enough to not need to be tracked manually. If something does come up regarding food and water I would prefer it to be as part of a specific situation (lost at sea, crossing a desert) rather than a meter that needs to be monitored constantly in-game.

This. I just can't say it better.

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Gods, no. If it was included as a hardcore option, then I'm all for it. I can always play on a different setting. But I in now way want to see it as a core game mechanic. To me it's nothing but tedium and not fun. And I wouldn't want to see the necessity of carrying food or water rations in the inventory either. It just takes an inventory slot with no benefit for the player. As noted by Kilroy, if it's central to a quest or specific situation, then that would be fine.

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