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Update #24: Less than 30 Hours to go! Life and Death, and Audio CD Soundtrack!

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Due to the scope of the game, I wonder if it is worth the time to implement options for "dungeon crawler" style players and balance them. However, since many of them don't seem to care for the balance, maybe just give them an option of giving EXP for killing. The same goes with equipments which can break the game-balance. I don't want to see them in my play-through. Maybe, there should be munchkin mode to secure the game but, again, I wonder if it is worth the time. I know Torchlight, Borderlands and Diablo are popular but I'd like PE to keep a solid design scope.

I'm trying to look at it from the developers' perspective. The instances of random encounters are generated at run-time. It is not hard to add an objective with the assigned experience during this generation. Not random groups of enemies already have statistics. It is not really hard to add some group identifier to link an enemy to an objective. An option to turn on/off this kind of objectives is not a time consuming feature.

Balancing will eat some time for sure.


That said I really don't need such option as I'm pretty happy with no experience for killing. But there are some players who are not happy. I'm trying to point out that they are "fighting" wrong obstacle. They are "fighting" a system (objective-based) while it is better to "fight" an implementation. Exp-per-killing can be implemented in the objective-based system, the only difference is getting experience per group of enemies (a group of 1 and more) not an individual enemy.


Edit: typo :(

Edited by Olauron Mor-Galad
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Completely useless fact: Josh was on the Torment team, but not as a designer... he was the webmaster and designed the kick-ass Torment website.

Yeah, I meant he wasn't engaged in the game development itself. Are you a programmer, perchance? No, you don't need to answer. I don't mean to intrude your privacy. It's just some characteristics in people's behavior stir my curiosity. It may be from my old and vague memories in the old forum, too. *Torment music* Oops, guess way too off topic. :facepalm:


I don't know why you think only dungeon crawlers would like to get XP for defeating monsters. For me it's the complete opposite; I tend to go for non-combat options where possible since I don't really enjoy enormous amounts of combat, so if it doesn't give XP I'll inevitably spend the whole game avoiding it wherever possible as it's just a waste of time.

I simply tried to see where they come from since I cannot understand their way of thinking in any direct ways. XP or loot, they are just data which become totally useless outside of the game. Rather than XP gathering, I'd enjoy the process of playing games in the way of my liking.
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Are you a programmer, perchance? No, you don't need to answer. I don't mean to intrude your privacy. It's just some characteristics in people's behavior stir my curiosity. It may be from my old and vague memories in the old forum, too. *Torment music* Oops, guess way too off topic. :facepalm:

No, that's fine. I was in college when Torment came out, studying computer science. I unfortunately had to drop out in 2000 and immediately started working as a programmer. These days, I'm more of a project manager/consultant/analyst than a programmer, but I do some coding on occasion.

There are no doors in Jefferson that are "special game locked" doors. There are no characters in that game that you can kill that will result in the game ending prematurely.

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No, that's fine. I was in college when Torment came out, studying computer science. I unfortunately had to drop out in 2000 and immediately started working as a programmer. These days, I'm more of a project manager/consultant/analyst than a programmer, but I do some coding on occasion.

Nice to see you seem to be alive and kicking. I'm kinda on and off when it comes to the net but you were quite active in BIS forum. Some of Sawyer's posts/writings at that time and your Project Jefferson (Thank you for that site!) kept my eyes on Obsidian, beside their own works. Nice these small things finally turned out to make a game of their own IP finally.
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Remedies for health problems often have only a palliative or placebo effect at best, owing their continued use more to folk beliefs and tradition than any basis in scientific methodology.

Are you telling me prayer isn't a substitute for medicine?! You've offended the beliefs of me and my ancestors who got by just fine with an average life span of 30 years. When I was 14, I prayed that my wife be cured of her common cold. Low and behold, 2 weeks later, my prayer was answer. Suck on that, science.

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You are forgetting one thing: that it is a battle/skirmish scenario you are talking about...not a duel. You are trying to rationalise, so let's imagine a real skirmish. And these tend to be fast and chaotic. When you kill an opponent, do you think his friends will just watch you lean over him drill a hole in his skull with your sword? No, as I see it, during a battle a participant that incapacitates an enemy will immediately look around and try to engage a standing opponent, because a standing opponent is much more deadly than an unconscious one. Because at any moment that standing foe can deal that decisive blow that will end your life. In a real skirmish you fight for your life, not XP. This is how it works, if you want to keep it real.



Actually a battle/skirmish is more likely to result in someone getting a sword in the head than a duel would. In a duel everyone is looking at the combat, so if someone is going to die, they could intervene by distracting the person about to perform the killing blow.


In a battle with multiple enemies it is easier for individual combats being overlooked for several seconds. Of course in a game that doesn't happen because we watch health bars and press pause to issue orders and respond to every circumstance.


But consider the logic of a priest being attacked by an enemy archer, the rest of the party are engaged with multiple foes. Meanwhile the rogue just lost all his stamina and is down. The rogues opponent then ignores the rogue and runs towards the priest or any other party member? And this always happens, in every fight? Much more likely the enemy stands on the rogues head, squishes his brains and then runs towards any other party member.


I guess once we see it in action we will get a feel for it, but on the face of it, it seems to me to be a much less realistic system than just having someone die and be resurrected. It depends in every instance on the enemy being stupid and ignoring the unconscious, every single time.


Exactly my thoughts. If I were in a battle and just struck down an opponent so they were lying unconscious and prone, I would quickly stick a sword in their neck/face/chest to finish off the job before moving onto the next opponent. It just makes sense to me. Especially in a world with magic, I mean what if the guy was faking it and the moment I turned away he went and did something (spell, wand, scroll, thrown potion, dagger etc). The only time I could see myself not doing this would be if I had another opponent right next to me that I was fighting, or a ranged opponent currently attacking me. However I still might be able to finish the downed guy off before moving to the ranged enemy.


I do see however that this makes sense in terms of not having any sort of raise dead option (if the enemy went and killed your character as soon as they were down it would probably get pretty frustrating). Just pointing out that it doesn't necessarily reflect what might be done if this were a real scenario. But then this is fantasy.


Thanks for the answers Josh, that clears a lot up. I'll be honest, at the moment it doesn't sound like my cup of tea but I'm pretty set in my ways around stuff like that.


For me, part of the fun of the old games was wandering around, finding cool encounters, fighting and gaining power for me to tackle the next bit of the critical path. This seems like it's a step away from that.

We'll see how it plays. Nothing's set in stone. I've just observed too much post-quest Black Ops slaughter to believe that players are going to behave differently when they can squeeze 1xp out of a peasant's head.


I may have a differing view from Monte when it comes to romances, but I agree with this. (and perhaps I'm set in my ways too)


I like wandering around and seeing what I stumble upon, whether it be a small items hidden, a group of enemies, or some NPC (there's something satisfying about clearing a map).


I think the dragon is a bad example because they're a huge, tough creature that can easily be associated with a quest. But what if say... I was wandering and stumbled across something that wasn't hugely tough, but not trivial either. And at my low level it was certainly tough enough and took effort to defeat... (say a dire wolf, worg or vampric wolf to use a BG example that springs to mind) Then I get nothing from defeating it because it isn't associated with any quest. And if it was it might seem a bit silly and extra work to have a quest for every single dire wolf I came across (assuming there are a number of them scattered everywhere). Would there be a quest for every hobgoblin I kill? Every gibberling? If not why should I even bother to kill them? (maybe I should just run away from every enemy encounter on a map instead, certainly saves me time if I'm not going to gain anything but injuries from a fight)


I think of xp gained from killing a creature to be my character getting better at killing things, learning how to avoid getting hit, strike in vital spots etc. They are perfecting (or trying to) their knowledge of the art of combat through practice, just like any other skill where you get better through practice. Yes perhaps easy things should be worth less xp as you get more powerful (though depending on how much experience we need per level those easy things could end up being a trivial amount anyway), but you could also have enemies not respawning, or not respawning very often.


And as for post-quest slaughtering, maybe it's because I like playing RPGs as roleplaying games where I stick to my characters, but I think I would only do that if I had say an evil character that wanted any extra items the questgivers might have after gaining information from them.


For solving such a problem, how about making the NPCs aware of it happening? If a character has gone around accepting quests and then slaughtering the quest givers a number of times then I'd think word might get around and people would be pretty reluctant to ask that person for help/give them quests in the future. Or perhaps they'll be asked to do something and then the questgiver will have fled so they can't claim their reward because the person didn't want to be slaughtered. Someone mentioned that regular NPCs might be worth no xp too which seems reasonable, though obviously a tougher quest giver who is skilled in battle should probably be worth something for the challenge that fight might provide for the player character. Another thing is giving the player the option of actually double-crossing people like that in-game. I seem to remember a quest in NWN:HotU where I was able to do this and the game actually acknowledged it, I think my henchman even commented upon it being pretty deceitful/sneaky of me to do such a thing.

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  • 5 months later...

No curative spells but placebo spells & similar wording. This, to me, sounds that there will be spells that can give you a temporary health boost (mechanically). Not "Cure Light Wounds" in any way, but a potion or a spell that "heightens" the life-force for a little while and gives you perhaps +10 Health points for a set amount duration.

Example scenario/Speculation very much:
1. I have 2 HP left on one of my Characters, mid-battle, so I put a temporary "health boost" on the character in b4 more HP damage (and I'm playing on Expert and I don't want my character to die). Now 12 HP.
2. The Character takes 3 HP damage, now on 9 HP. I win the battle.
3. Now the battle is over, and I've got time ticking against me. I gun for a "Safe Resting Spot".
4. Keeping the character alive with Potions and other temporary spells on the way, so that I don't find myself with a "-1 HP" (which would mean the death of the character).
5. I get to the safe spot and I click the resting spot.
6. Character died anyways!!

What I am warning for here, is that the "Rest" function could remove all the effects on the character before the "Rest code" is run. Don't.

Just throwing out some foresight. One of those "Just in case!!".

Edited by Osvir
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I want to elaborate.

Basically, there might come a situation where I have to pretty much carry a team member back to a safe resting spot a la "Hang in there man! Just a little bit more! Almost there!". If that happens I don't want to spend all that time to get to the resting spot just to fail, unless it is part of a narrative quest, done in a good way (with the design intent of making the Player cry T-T).

The reason to why I'm expressing this is because I've encountered similar things in some RPG's (I can't recall exactly which ones, it might be just one. But I have it somewhere in my memory bank from some time long long ago) where I've given a "health boost" to a character, but when the effects are gone, the character falls to the ground, dead. This has usually resulted in a "Load game" sequence.

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