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Mega-dungeons. I want one. With tunnels.

The voice of reason old-skool dungeons grognard monty haul traps rust monster 10 pole

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#61
Elerond

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Mega dungeons are almost always fun, so yes to one. Killer bunny/dragon/liche/demon/tresure in end, but final counter should not be a necessarily there could be also some nice twists if player take his/her time to find out.

Mega dungeons story is important, but only to tell why there is mega dungeon and why player goes there. And of course it would nice to have some narrative story inside of the dungeon but to me it's not absolute necessity.

Even that I love mega dungeons and all those nice traps and puzzles what they can include, I would not like to see main game to suffer so that one can be made.

Stress goal for dedicated dungeon team could be nice but I would first want to know what other options there are.

#62
working man hole

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Durlag's Tower stretch goal please

#63
Stun

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Ooh! we have a Developer watching this one.

No better time than the present.

1. How mega is your idea of a mega dungeon? 5 levels?10 levels? 20? More?

I don't like to think in set math terms like that. How about "a few levels". But don't just pile on the levels for the sake of filler, so that you can say: hey, here's a 5 level dungeon for you guys!" Instead, there should be an in-game reason for a dungeon to go that deep under ground. It's hard to explain. But let me give you an example of something from my Pen and paper days that I'll never forget.

This was D&D 1st edition (Yes, I'm 40 years old lol) We had a party of 20-25th level characters, and I'm pretty sure my DM was growing uneasy with how powerful we were, so he got us to agree on one last Epic adventure. Live or die, our characters were retiring after this one. He set up massive dungeon. I don't remember how many levels it was. More than 4 but less than 10. but it went pretty deep underground. And by the last level it didn't even feel like we were on the prime material plane anymore. It felt like we had decended our way into *some* powerful being's plane of the abyss, or Hell. The dungeon itself got progressively harder with every level, the story got more morbid, verging on infernal the deeper we got. Eventually, we saw no more signs of the world we knew (no more tables made of earthly materials. no more marble tiles on the ground. no more human bodies, no more writing in a familiar language in the books, scrolls etc. We were literally deeper than anyone in the known world had ever gone. Instead, We got hints that this was a base belonging to a being of fairly substantial rank in the lower planes. And after weeks of gaming, we got to the last level, which utterly dwarfed everything above it. It was a massive open cavern, divided in half, long ways, by a river made of the most foul looking (and smelling) rust red colored ichor we had ever seen. One of our guys hovered his hand over it to get an idea of what we were dealing with... It was liquid cancer, for lack of a better term. He lost his hand and part of his forearm in 2 seconds. No saving throw.

As we looked around, we saw no end to the cavern, it seemed to stretch forever. But we did see what appeared to be a giant dome-like structure in the distance. So we headed there. We walked in, and started taking damage from invisible fumes, our Thief lost his eyesight permanently. And sitting on a slimey throne at the very center was... Anthraxus. The Oinodaemon himself.

TL;DR: Large multi-level dungeons are best served with 1) mystery-based stories that unfold as the levels do; 2) Pieces of Shock and Awe; 3) and final bosses that justify the dungeon's size.

2. How important do you think story is in said mega dungeon?

Paramount. It's what differentiates a memorable experience from a tedius grind.


3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.

And my answer is Yes. When I judge a game, I remember the memorable moments in it, and it doesn't make a lick of difference if those moments came from the main story, or if they came from that optional dungeon.

4. Is this something you would like to see as a high end stretch goal or set of stretch goals?

1 High end stretch goal. Make it the $2.4 million one, and I'll up my pledge by $100 the moment I see it on the kickstarter page. Promise. :)

Edited by Stun, 21 September 2012 - 04:58 AM.

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#64
Shadenuat

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1. How mega is your idea of a mega dungeon? 5 levels?10 levels? 20? More?
It depens on size of levels. ToEE was't that deep a dungeon, but every level was humongous. Legend of Grimrock had compact levels, so there were 13, but whole game was a dungeon. I don't see the point in creating levels just for the sake of levels, it's better to be "realistic" in the sense that each level should serve some kind of function (see Arx Fatalis for whole setting around that concept), or you'd just run out of ideas to keep players interested. I am not a fan of filler-levels. From five to seven levels seems like a good number to crawl into, without other parts of the game suffering too much.

2. How important do you think story is in said mega dungeon?
It should have story which arcs everything, but there is no need for a lot of NPC's, cutscenes or drama. People have to understand that they are going into that dungeon for the sake of gold, because of great adventurer's greed, exploration and combat. It is a dungeon, dungeons exist to crawl them. There should probably be issues with traps, supplies, darkness. Players can create their own story depending on how they act in a dungeon. Design and level layout, item descriptions, puzzles, monsters, and other adventuring parties (rivals, dead, trapped, or even turned undead) can all add to the story.

3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.
Like mega-dungeon or romances? Dungeon please. :dragon:

4. Is this something you would like to see as a high end stretch goal or set of stretch goals?
Yes.

Edited by Shadenuat, 21 September 2012 - 05:11 AM.


#65
sorophx

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1. How mega is your idea of a mega dungeon? 5 levels?10 levels? 20? More?
2. How important do you think story is in said mega dungeon?
3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.
4. Is this something you would like to see as a high end stretch goal or set of stretch goals?

1. infinite, with randomly generated levels. the party gets locked in and can't escape until they find the architect or something.
2. a barebones backstory would suffice, with a random chance of meeting the Big Bad Guy on lower levels, who will reveal the purpose of this massive structure, or something
3. no
4. yesh, as a stretch goal/future expansion

#66
Gibbscape_Torment

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It can't be optional. If it's optional you can't put good loot in it thus negating the whole point.

So mandatory and about 150% of Watcher's Keep. Stretch goal would be good.

But again the loot must be good and the fights really hard. No resting unless level clear. Once you enter the next level you can't go back unless new level also clear.


Then i would not buy the game. Pacing a main plot is virtually impossible when you have one mandatory, big ass, 10 hour long dungeon right in the middle. It would quite honestly ruin the entire game for me.
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#67
IEfan

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1. How mega is your idea of a mega dungeon? 5 levels? 10 levels? 20? More?

Isn't the core idea of Mega dungeon is to be that ridicilous challenge for the toughest (like in roguelikes), plus that they possibly just close you in and never let you go until you clear it? Idk man. I think the idea of each level matters more than the amount I guess, like in Durlag's and Watcher's Keep levels... there has to be some good ideas in level design like in any dungeons. Otherwise, the more the merrier (especially if you can't get out > : ^ B )

Like that's a nice idea and tbh Durlag's Tower was partially tougher than Watcher's Keep in BG2 and that's pretty amazing considering what a killer team I had in BG1, it really brought to my knees. But you know, they can be pretty exhaustive to go through (the elf tower for example - cool lore but daamn, i wouldn't want the whole game become big dungeons one after another like IWD's (at the cost of lore/exploration/npc's/dialogue/idk FRESH CHANGE)).
I feel that BG2 big dungeons in general achieved a greatly balanced experience.



2. How important do you think story is in said mega dungeon?
I think it definitely matters, depending on what you mean with that sentence ofc. It would be cool if it really connected to the main storyline of the game, like Mutant Base in Fallout 1 (which was hands down a really, really cool/good experience, especially if you went there alone). Perhaps there are conditions to get to mega dungeons or that it is well-hid?

Perhaps you could have an alternative ending to the game there? Since it goes for so long/so deep/really tears on your resources and needs preparation.

For example, everybody has the normal ending for the game etc etc but perhaps there is a base for the biggest faction in the game (the goverment or "good guys"), eg the heavily armoured naval base of the game - much like in Fallout, it could have respect-inducing known attack towers (eg Fallout 2 defense turrets) AT THE GATES only, just this ridicilous keep you aren't supposed to go in because it's eg the good guys or goverment or whatever. (I was always wondering why there weren't any big govermental buildings for those mage's or the militia in BG2 that you could visit or be awed of or anything). If you start to breach in then there would be no turning back as the whole world will put you on wanted list, major factions either refuse to help or attacks you (they don't want to mess with the Big Brother) and in general you're just down on your luck when you get in there (or leave the keep), thus not leaving you with too many options.
Inside, you would perhaps find an hidden plan or plot, perhaps hidden information on events, faction, people in the country - ridicilous sea-monster encounters that might be impossible to put down (thus figure out how to stay alive/how to avoid), etc etc. Whatever you can think of.
THEN I could understand why the place
A. has huge drops that possibly make the last fight too easy/cause imbalance issues
B. WHY the place could be even harder than the last boss or whatever dungeon there is. It was strange in BG1 to have this huge, satisfying, brings-to-your-knees dungeon you BARELY make through and then you're thrown BACK into the world!
C. It would make sense why the place is so ridicilously hard/over-powered that it even makes people think that the place isn't even MEANT to be explored/breached, even on the higher levels.
(D. and let's face it: how is it possible that a group of 6 people COULD destroy entire worlds, without any limits? perhaps there should be good comparison point for power-differences in game, thus like the Vault City in Fallout 2)

Or idk, maybe undersea temple with those huge-ass/overpowering sea monsters as described by Sawyer? An island in the sea that is lethally dangerous to approach even (wow, this really is BG1's storyline). Idk, I just imagine it's something ridicilous and humbling like Ultra-Ending Challenges or similiar in ADOM (a famous roguelike) where you have to go 100 levels down the infinite dungeon or stay and fight the chaos lord in Hell (before you get corrupted to death just by TIME PASSING or surrounding mobs of enemies) or fight Emperor Moloch and it's Molochs or something similiar.

Also, why not have a "Fez dungeon" (the indie game)? The game's last secret/puzzle was apparently really complex and cryptic puzzle that took months for fans to beat. Why not have a similiar secret puzzle dungeon, a ridicilous esoteric puzzle? Again, maybe something that looks like that it's cleared but if you're good/pass good conditions, you could detect that it goes on and the entrance/first part is cryptic, leaving you to think whether it's just a small temple for some god or if you have to do something obscure to proceed further. What is the first creature you have killed in your life etc, IDK! Like a "mega dungeon of puzzle dungeons" i guess, with some kind of nice prize at the end. Reminds me of Ocarina of Time and Super Mario 64 rumours about hidden Luigi character that COULD had been true...


3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.

No, Not really. I'd like the core game to be hard as diamond, the quality control is pretty out-of-map in games these days and getting a great entirity would be a goal i guess?

I mean it could be nice but I'll ask a question in turn: wouldn't it be possible to put it as an add-on, like in Tales of the Sword Coast (or ToB)? Naturally, that would bring some tough logististical question - maybe script writers or Avellone isn't too happy about adding a remote locations that are hard to include as a part of the game's core story. Plus balancing issues etc.

If you think of the above idea I talked about, you could add that dungeon since it is it's own entirity/subworld and has an ending as well.

4. Is this something you would like to see as a high end stretch goal or set of stretch goals?

Maybe yeah. I think I'm still looking forward to more updates, the language support question and see if more core questions get answered...

I think that basically, the more the actual game vs mega dungeon improves then better - the surpluss resources (if there ever really be such) could be used for the mega dungeon... but what really matters is that if you CAN make an interesting mega-dungeon in the first place and if you have ideas for it. Do you?

#68
Brodin

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Large multi layered non linear dungeons would be absolutely wonderful similar to the Temple of Elemental Evil. Though I suppose it is likely it might not be possible due to budget concerns, would be nice for a stretch goal though.

#69
licketysplit

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I'm all for dungeons. I want them to have real atmosphere though, very creepy. Like Diablo, or Amnesia: Dark Descent.

#70
Jarmo

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I've always disliked the whole concept of dungeons, they're usually pretty silly things.
Goblins here, gelatinous cubes there, traps all over the place, the kind of structures that'd realistically kill half of its inhabitants every week.

There have been good ones, even ones that make some sort of sense, but not often.
And I don't think I've ever been disappointed it's over already when reaching the end.

If anything, I'd say locations, dungeons and castles are way too large inside.
The smaller the better.

#71
Gfted1

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It can't be optional. If it's optional you can't put good loot in it thus negating the whole point.


Two of the most powerful weapons in BG2, Carsomyr and Staff of the Magi, were obtained from optional battles.

#72
Stun

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It can't be optional. If it's optional you can't put good loot in it thus negating the whole point.

Wat?

Look at the most cited Dungeons on this thread: Durlags tower and Watcher's keep. Both were optional. Both contained the best loot in their respective games.

Edited by Stun, 21 September 2012 - 05:47 AM.

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#73
Metabot

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So, on one hand people want a realistic, believable setting in terms of basic principles, but on the other are advocating for mega-dungeons within a Middle Age society, a nonsensical, illogical construction which would take tens of years just to complete, without any reason whatsoever for doing so.

As George Bush, I ask: remember the pyramids? Entire decades of work to complete? They had tiny undergrounds.


I really want to know why people think that fantasy settings are exactly equivalent to the middle ages. They're not. They might look like it, but that doesn't mean that it has to exactly coincide with earth. There's magic and dragons and elves after all

#74
Stun

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3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.


HELL NO! A game can't be everything to everyone. If you want to make a story driven game, make one, if you want to make a dungeon crawler, make another one. Never mind the fact that these concepts tend to appeal to different people, if you try to do both simultaneously, likely neither one will come out terribly well.

BG1 did both simultaneously.... and really really well.

And there is a such thing as story-driven dungeons, you know. The concepts are neither mutually exclusive, nor do they have a history of polarizing the fanbase.

Edited by Stun, 21 September 2012 - 05:59 AM.

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#75
daz23

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Sorry, but long dungeons that only focus on combat are very boring. IMO, dungeons should have few but powerful enemies, should focus more on traps, hidden treasure areas, puzzles to get the better loot, and creepy atmosphere.

#76
Dorateen

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Mega-dungeon populated with lots of levels, combat, traps and tricks and puzzles and such. With it's own internal storyline. Preferably built by an ancient race of dwarves.

Yes and yes.

Harumph!

#77
septembervirgin

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I can't say this topic hasn't come up in meetings. Why don't you guys turn this into a user poll and see if there is serious interest in a mega-dungeon. The things I would be curious about are...

1. How mega is your idea of a mega dungeon? 5 levels?10 levels? 20? More?
2. How important do you think story is in said mega dungeon?
3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.
4. Is this something you would like to see as a high end stretch goal or set of stretch goals?


1. I would like to see a fifty level dungeon with most levels spanning several screens on maximum zoom-out. It should be awe inspiring and a legend in its own right. I want a dungeon I'll be able to brag about seeing on my deathbed. There should be secret levels. There should be exits throughout the land represented in the game. Expansions to this game should include expansions to the dungeon. There should be paid content to add extra levels. There should be spin-off games based entirely around the dungeon and not just on mobile. It should be increasingly devious, even with living levels, bottomless pits from which terrible things fly and slither, flooded levels, entire cities, and magical scrolls composed of hallways that wend in the shape of runes.

2. I think the story of the dungeon itself should slowly reveal itself as part of the story, should be a possible "home of the gods" and have the histories of hundreds of adventurers who perished therein. An undead being might populate a library with journals of perished adventurers, with manuscripts gleaned from the confessions of captured adventurers.

3. I would support a mega-dungeon if it diverted resources from the main game. I mean, it would be a stretch goal, right? I suspect it would be and I support it utterly.

4. I would love to see it as a set of stretch goals. I even made such a suggestion in a separate thread.
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#78
Crooked Bee

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Sorry, but long dungeons that only focus on combat are very boring. IMO, dungeons should have few but powerful enemies, should focus more on traps, hidden treasure areas, puzzles to get the better loot, and creepy atmosphere.


Well, I don't think anyone wants this to be a "trash mob dungeon," really.

#79
Muzrub333

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I can't say this topic hasn't come up in meetings. Why don't you guys turn this into a user poll and see if there is serious interest in a mega-dungeon. The things I would be curious about are...

1. How mega is your idea of a mega dungeon? 5 levels?10 levels? 20? More?
2. How important do you think story is in said mega dungeon?
3. Would you still support a mega dungeon if it diverted resources from the main plot/game? My guess is no, but I had to ask.
4. Is this something you would like to see as a high end stretch goal or set of stretch goals?


1. Depends on how large the levels are I guess. More important to me than levels is variety. Get crazy.

2. There should be a reason to go, so there needs to be a story. I would like to see the story develop, with added complexity, the "deeper" we get into the dungeon, or series of dungeons.

3. Ugghh...not so cut and dry with me. Dungeons usually, (if well done), are my favorite part of any RPG. Overland encounters, and grand heroic story arcs actually bore me. But, it's not my game alone, so no...don't pull from the main content. Either have the funding to do a major dungeon the right way, or leave it out completely.

4. Stretch goals...toss a couple different levels of goals out there for us. That said, the first tier needs to be enough to make a good quality stand alone dungeon. That way we don't get a half assed dungeon. Just make higher stretch goal tiers add to the Ohhh Ahhh Arrghhh factor.

Edited by Muzrub333, 21 September 2012 - 07:30 AM.


#80
Klaleara

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I say a mega dungeon is a requirement.





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: The voice of reason, old-skool, dungeons, grognard, monty haul, traps, rust monster, 10 pole

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