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Should encounters have aggro mechanics?

Aggro mechanics, yay or nay?  

138 members have voted

  1. 1. Would you like to see aggro mechanics implemented in the game?

    • Yes
      42
    • No
      87
    • What are aggro mechanics?
      9


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Is it wrong for me to wish those 17 people who voted to put the most ludicrous of all MMO combat mechanics into a BG2/PS:T remake a slow painful death?


JoshSawyer: Listening to feedback from the fans has helped us realize that people can be pretty polarized on what they want, even among a group of people ostensibly united by a love of the same games. For us, that means prioritizing options is important. If people don’t like a certain aspect of how skill checks are presented or how combat works, we should give them the ability to turn that off, resources permitting.

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Is it wrong for me to wish those 17 people who voted to put the most ludicrous of all MMO combat mechanics into a BG2/PS:T remake a slow painful death?

I think most people voting for it are thinking of aggro in a much broader way. Basically anything that controls who the enemy attacks beyond just targeting the closest character. That doesn't mean they want any skills that directly alter "threat." At least, that's what I hope.

Edited by ogrezilla

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I voted yes, having never played an mmo, besides about a week of DDO. As Ogrezilla pointed out, I'm refering to some sort of system that the player can use to try to misdirect the enemy AI. Call it aggro if you want.

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Is it wrong for me to wish those 17 people who voted to put the most ludicrous of all MMO combat mechanics into a BG2/PS:T remake a slow painful death?

I think most people voting for it are thinking of aggro in a much broader way. Basically anything that controls who the enemy attacks beyond just targeting the closest character. That doesn't mean they want any skills that directly alter "threat." At least, that's what I hope.

 

Always the optimist. If they are voting that way then they deserve the clickfest popamole game that they are asking for. Engilsh words do have meaning. Aggro means only one thing and pretty much anyone who has even the vaguest idea of what it is about should be voting not just "no", but "hell no" unless they really do want PE to be an MMO. If Project Eternity did turn into an MMO, or even a single player version of an MMO like Bethesda's games, I do think that it would be so hilarious (in a dark sort of way) that it would almost be worth the result. Everyone who pledged at the higher tiers would be unable to sit down for weeks.


JoshSawyer: Listening to feedback from the fans has helped us realize that people can be pretty polarized on what they want, even among a group of people ostensibly united by a love of the same games. For us, that means prioritizing options is important. If people don’t like a certain aspect of how skill checks are presented or how combat works, we should give them the ability to turn that off, resources permitting.

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I voted yes, having never played an mmo, besides about a week of DDO. As Ogrezilla pointed out, I'm refering to some sort of system that the player can use to try to misdirect the enemy AI. Call it aggro if you want.

 

Jesus. You do at least realize that you are NOT going to get this from Obsidian, right? At least not in a non-publisher project promising a BG2/PS:T remake. It is just beyond absurd to expect it. The only thing you should, maybe not expect, but hope for is good AI. Hoping for an aggro mechanic is just very wishful thinking on your part. BTW, if you haven't yet tried an MMO let me be the first to tell you that you will absolutely love them and never want to even look at P:E when it is released. If you want aggro game mechanics I can't think of a worse place for you to be than on these forums. Just a friendly suggestion. No matter what you do you should start playing WoW ASAP.

Edited by metiman

JoshSawyer: Listening to feedback from the fans has helped us realize that people can be pretty polarized on what they want, even among a group of people ostensibly united by a love of the same games. For us, that means prioritizing options is important. If people don’t like a certain aspect of how skill checks are presented or how combat works, we should give them the ability to turn that off, resources permitting.

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I just want enemies who are intelligent to target the greatest threat if they aren't being effectively blocked by another character.

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No, I prefer enemy AI that looks for the weak squidgy bits in my party and then tries to kick those weak squidgy bits as hard as they can. If that means bee-lining for my mage, or a giant hurling a boulder at my musket wielding ranger then so be it.

But there has to be some way for the player to force enemies to attack your defensively specialised characters, otherwise they become quite useless. Some sort of ZoC-system would be preferable but those can be tricky to implement in games with real time combat.

 

There's an easy way to make that work. Give mundane or defensively specced characters THE ABILITY TO MODIFY ENEMY MOVEMENT. Shield bashes, bullrushes, hamstrings and grapples. Make those characters get in the way and actively stop the enemy from just beelining to your mages/rangers rather than just passively being more "threatening" because wank. Suddenly, characters that you can specialize defensively are one of those things you can never have enough of because of enemies intelligently priorities the mages/rangers.

 

Aggro as a mechanic of taunts and compulsions makes very little actual sense, and compared to the things a character could be doing? Really shouldn't even be an option.

Edited by Zeful
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front line fighters who have to actively keep enemies off of their allies would be a dream. Imagine an orc charging your mage and your dwarf fighter sprints over and tackle hims. Another tries to get to the mage and your rogue kicks his legs out and stabs another angry orc in the thigh to slow it down.

Edited by ogrezilla

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I voted yes, having never played an mmo, besides about a week of DDO. As Ogrezilla pointed out, I'm refering to some sort of system that the player can use to try to misdirect the enemy AI. Call it aggro if you want.

 

The MMO threat mechanic... I didn't see it explained in full, so briefly--the idea is that whoever has the highest threat in a party combat situation, that person's toon will receive aggro from the enemy in question (aggro is binary, threat is cumulative from damage done, healing, and other action sources). This won't work in PE because the threat mechanic, besides basically providing some measure protection for the glass cannons, is the essence* of cohesive and coordinated group play involving 2-24 individuals (typically). In an MMO. Adding a dynamic threat component to PE would be ridiculous work and would radically increase micromanagement unnecessarily--because the proper threat calculus relies on different values for every offensive damage skill, every spell tossed, every heal amount! No.

 

A taunt is a temporary and artificial increase in threat. In practice, it works but doesn't make sense and then wouldn't work in PE for the same reasons as above. But there have been some other ideas in this thread that can work--I think that at least some of the classes should have the ability to try to protect someone (sure makes sense from an RP POV too), and this would require some interaction with the enemy AI at a skill usage level.

 

Illusion, misdirection... Zeful mentioned movement modifiers like shield bash or something to "get in the way," which could work (perhaps activating the skill will allow the sprite to move very quickly to the target for application, like a charge or tackle)--it makes sense in a combat situation that if you're going after the priest and a warrior gets in your way and starts smacking you, you're forced to deal with the warrior first before you can get to the priest. This sort of skill shouldn't be available all the time, of course. What if some classes could cast a 'semi invisibility' spell on someone else? What if soul is involved in some creative way?

 

The very basic premise should be addressed, but the threat+aggro mechanics aren't the way to do it, IMO.

 

 

Edit: And another thing. The reason why threat/aggro works in MMOs is because it's hard enough coordinating a bunch of individual players--the combined mechanic requires a crappy enemy AI (with typically scripted fights). On the other hand, a single-player game should have the flexibility and power to offer some more impressive AI.

 

 

*I'm speaking from the bias of a former raiding main tank.

Edited by Ieo
  • Like 1

The KS Collector's Edition does not include the Collector's Book.

Which game hook brought you to Project Eternity and interests you the most?

PE will not have co-op/multiplayer, console, or tablet support (sources): [0] [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

Write your own romance mods because there won't be any in PE.

"But what is an evil? Is it like water or like a hedgehog or night or lumpy?" -(Digger)

"Most o' you wanderers are but a quarter moon away from lunacy at the best o' times." -Alvanhendar (Baldur's Gate 1)

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I voted yes, having never played an mmo, besides about a week of DDO. As Ogrezilla pointed out, I'm refering to some sort of system that the player can use to try to misdirect the enemy AI. Call it aggro if you want.

 

Jesus. You do at least realize that you are NOT going to get this from Obsidian, right? At least not in a non-publisher project promising a BG2/PS:T remake. It is just beyond absurd to expect it. The only thing you should, maybe not expect, but hope for is good AI. Hoping for an aggro mechanic is just very wishful thinking on your part. BTW, if you haven't yet tried an MMO let me be the first to tell you that you will absolutely love them and never want to even look at P:E when it is released. If you want aggro game mechanics I can't think of a worse place for you to be than on these forums. Just a friendly suggestion. No matter what you do you should start playing WoW ASAP.

That was a bit unecessary. All I'm talking about is essentially good AI, and good ol' DnD mechanics. The reason I dislike MMOs from my little experience with them is a lack of any non combat content, so thanks for the advice, but I think I may just stick with PE.

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Ieo, so we are in perfect agreement then. As I said, I don't have extensive experience with mmos, all I suggested was a mechanic that would allow the player to tactically interrupt the AI.

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Ieo, so we are in perfect agreement then. As I said, I don't have extensive experience with mmos, all I suggested was a mechanic that would allow the player to tactically interrupt the AI.

 

Yes, I was using your post mainly as a hook to make my point, since I'm sure others reading the thread and who voted may or may not have experience with it and may not even know what the terms really mean. ;)

  • Like 1

The KS Collector's Edition does not include the Collector's Book.

Which game hook brought you to Project Eternity and interests you the most?

PE will not have co-op/multiplayer, console, or tablet support (sources): [0] [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

Write your own romance mods because there won't be any in PE.

"But what is an evil? Is it like water or like a hedgehog or night or lumpy?" -(Digger)

"Most o' you wanderers are but a quarter moon away from lunacy at the best o' times." -Alvanhendar (Baldur's Gate 1)

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For the love of gods, no. You're about to finish enemy's mage but then one of enemy's fighters starts roar like crazy and insult you. Would you care? Then why npcs should?

Oh, and the tip from DA:O which used aggro mechanic.

Enemies prefer to attack heavy-armored targets

I've facepalmed every time I saw it. Maybe we should kill their healer first? Nooo, he doesn't look dangerous enough.

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As most have stated I don't like the idea of taunt, but the AI does need to be smart enough to not fall for common cheese mechanics like kiting as has been mentioned. I liked some of the ideas Ieo posted. I'm not really sure how aggro works but isn't it the idea that enemies target whoever is dealing them the most damage. While that seems like a somewhat simplistic system damage being dealt should definitely be a factor in who the AI decides to attack, along with who is closest (and hopefully the smarter enemies will preferentially target casters/healers or people close to death).

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For the love of gods, no. You're about to finish enemy's mage but then one of enemy's fighters starts roar like crazy and insult you. Would you care? Then why npcs should?

Oh, and the tip from DA:O which used aggro mechanic.

Enemies prefer to attack heavy-armored targets

I've facepalmed every time I saw it. Maybe we should kill their healer first? Nooo, he doesn't look dangerous enough.

But charm spells are fair game? Both sides should have a way to disrupt opponents tactics. I would be all for rogue-like classes being able to provoke a distraction on both sides.

EDIT: with the caveat that once the caster/opponent dies that the influence ends. I always though it was pretty stupid that you had to wait for effects that are supposed to be caster dependant to wear off after the battle.

Edited by Bloody Hypocrite

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tank style aggro and control is not a good mechanic.

 

some foes should be dumb or have their own quirks but most enemies should actively try to win the fight to the best of their ability. Maybe get a limited form of multiplayer working when their systems are setup and see what works in their game.

 

Some of the writing on fighters talked about them taking damage for the party. I hope that does not mean mmo style aggro systems.

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This poll really needs to be reworded. What people really object to, I believe, is MMO-style tanking based on taunts.

 

Yeah, in this forum there's an inverse relation between using MMO terms and getting level headed responses.

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No to aggro mechanics in the traditional, MMOish sense.

But no to old 'kite it till it dies' mehcanics either.

 

The best result of AI choosing its target in my book should be its unpredictability. Even if the mechanics are something new, but simple, it'll be possible to every moderately intelligent person to find a loophole to exploit it.

I think the aggro mechanics should seem very random to the player, they must be difficult to crack, resistant to attempts to comprehending their internal logic.

 

If your wizard suddenly pulls a rock throwing giant and you have no idea why it happened immediately, that's win.

And of course, the AI decision making on which target to attack should depend on its stats (Perception? Intelligence?). While a really dumb ogre can actually stick to the first target he sees, that shouldn't be the case with powerful lich.

Edited by Bpy6
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If you need to keep the eenmy of your caster, insted of fighter having agroo, let him PHISICLY BLOCK the opponent (as he should be doing). That's what threat range is for.

 

In old games you could place your fighter between the enemy fighter and mage - they'd just waltz right trough/around.

 

I'd really like if a fighter could protect a mage by blocking acess to him.


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When an intelligent enemy moves to get around your fighter and squash your mage he will provoke attacks of opportunity in the 3rd edition system. I liked that. It was realistic. But intelligent enemies should still attempt to do so despite the extra damage it causes. Going after a fighter with 300 hp and tough armor makes no sense when there is a mage with only 45 hp nearby. A gelatinous cube otoh, well... Or really anything that doesn't have eyes or some other means of 'visual' identification. In that case it's still not about aggro or even who is causing it the most damage. It's about who is closest and probably who it started attacking first. Intelligence should be modeled in terms of the sort of target selection the monster uses. As far as attempting to block the enemy from getting past your fighter that might be something to roll against. Maybe your fighter will be succesful in preventing it and that's fine.

Edited by metiman

JoshSawyer: Listening to feedback from the fans has helped us realize that people can be pretty polarized on what they want, even among a group of people ostensibly united by a love of the same games. For us, that means prioritizing options is important. If people don’t like a certain aspect of how skill checks are presented or how combat works, we should give them the ability to turn that off, resources permitting.

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In old games you could place your fighter between the enemy fighter and mage - they'd just waltz right trough/around.

 

I'd really like if a fighter could protect a mage by blocking acess to him.

 

Attacks of Opportunity were great (cause of frustration as well) in Temple of Elemental Evil.

A good skilled fighter with a big weapon and combat reflexes would whack everybody who'd try to waltz past.

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"Aggro" should just be one part of all those under-the-hood calculations the enemy AI does. It shouldn't be something the player can directly influence with multiple skills like "taunt", "detach", "intimidate" etc.

 

I see a lot of people say: NO KILL IT WITH FIRE. Use your brain please? Aggro NEEDS to exist inside the game calculations otherwise kiting strategies are encouraged. Jeez.


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I hate the MMO aggro system. I'd prefer something like Tale suggests here:

 

Not really. I would like to see attitudes and behaviors. Something with more variety. Maybe Barbarians hate mages and all beeline for mages. Maybe another type of enemy likes to prioritize party members in heavy armor. And maybe some base it off how much damage is being done to them. This kind of information could be revealed in a beastiary.

 

Also, I'd argue that you can counteract monsters going for weak characters without having to resort to aggro systems: spells such as Hold, magical impassable walls like a wall of fire that they have to go around, or knockdown spells. You also will then focus on environmental factors such as where you can bottleneck them, and if possible implement an actual 'shield wall' mechanic whereby warrriors can form a line (not necessarily right next to each other due to the numbers people are limited to, but close enough that they could attack anything going between them perhaps) that prevents monsters from passing through them (which would make having multiple warriors more desirable than usual too), that could be activated with a click resulting in the warriors automatically forming a line and moving as one character to make it easier to form and control. Hey, I love me my shield walls! :D


"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

"Space is big, really big." - Douglas Adams

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"Aggro" should just be one part of all those under-the-hood calculations the enemy AI does. It shouldn't be something the player can directly influence with multiple skills like "taunt", "detach", "intimidate" etc.

 

I see a lot of people say: NO KILL IT WITH FIRE. Use your brain please? Aggro NEEDS to exist inside the game calculations otherwise kiting strategies are encouraged. Jeez.

 

The IE games didn't have aggro. What I want is for the enemies to actually use their brains. Instead of just being a moron who attacks the least optimal target all the time.


JoshSawyer: Listening to feedback from the fans has helped us realize that people can be pretty polarized on what they want, even among a group of people ostensibly united by a love of the same games. For us, that means prioritizing options is important. If people don’t like a certain aspect of how skill checks are presented or how combat works, we should give them the ability to turn that off, resources permitting.

.
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