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The shift of the powergaming paradigm to non-combat

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There is one major problem with your entire idea here, well two actually.

 

1: Avoiding everything by stealth, cautious play, and or implementation of character skills or "fast talking" is actually a lot more challenging than just killing everything in your way. There is a reason Deus Ex Human Revolution gave you lots of bonus EXP for clearing missions with no kills or not being spotted, it was freaking hard.

 

Deus Ex isn't an RPG. It's a shooter with a intentionally crippled interface, that's slowly has the handicap removed to give the illusion of character progression, and once the Player's skill is sufficient to overcome the handicap, it's a pure shooter.

2: Where is the fun in being a bad ass fighter with a bad ass two handed axe if you never actually use it? What is fun about being a mage who can unleash nuclear holocaust if you well... never cast anything but charm or invisibility spells? Is it fun to be the deadly assassin who just happens to never kill anyone? Answers: Nowhere, Nothing, and No. Simply brute forcing your way past a group of horrid monsters is in general just a lot more fun than sneaking past them.

 

EDIT: It is nice to have non combat options for the players who want to choose that route and I am all for that. But the reality is that this is a game and it needs to be about having fun and rewarding you for playing well, not how you play. Most players will not use the "stealth" approach because it just is normally not as much fun and much of the time actually is the more time consuming choice.

 

Where is the fun in spending all of this time killing things so that your character can not progress?

 

Here's where you get into trouble though. You're now defining "There's only one right way to play and it's this way", your statement means that being xp/kill is wrong, a system that provides xp/kill and rewards alternative approaches is wrong, the only acceptable system is Quest-based xp.

 

If that's not what you meant, then what you really mean to say is that systems that only reward xp/kill are bad, and PE should use a system that provides xp/kill and rewards alternative approaches.

 

I really can't understand why everyone keeps zooming right past the system where all approaches can give a reward and keep ending up with a system that not only makes no sense, but it's implementation removes the incentive from a primary component of an RPG.

Edited by Gatt9
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There's no need for combat to have risk and non-combat not to have risk (or have lesser risk) though. Consider a situation where you find a bunch of bandits, you might have the options; attack them, ambush them, talk to them or avoid them, with XP given for the objective "remove the bandit threat". So trying to ambush might use the "survivalist" or "stealth" or "tracking" skill, fail your check and they notice you and it turns into a standard attack with your characters in poorer positions or worse, they ambush you. Talk to them and you may be able to get them to leave without a fight or even something elegant like employ them for your stronghold. Or maybe they decide they really want to stick lots of arrows into you instead since you've conveniently come out into the open and talked to them. You might even have more elegant solutions- steal some stuff off one group of bandits and frame another group to get them to fight, of course if your thief gets caught in the act...

 

All of these make combat seem like a punishment that only comes up when you've failed at the "right" way of doing things. As a general rule, do you enjoy doing things that are associated with just having failed? I don't know anyone who objectively enjoys cleaning up a dropped and broken glass, for example, even if life forces them into that situation.

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Said it before but XP from killing stuff doesn't make killing stuff more enjoyable unless you already don't like it. At which point your wanting something extra for doing something you don't like doing. Ultimately there is no reason to give XP per kill other then to allow kill farming. XP can be rewarded by progress, not just quest completion. Weathers thats in a dungeon, finding an interesting place, completing a level... figuring out how to get past some magical door. There are plenty of places to pepper experience that gives you the progress mid dungeon or mid quest that doesn't start to value things as being better then other things. And ultimately that's what they're talking about specifically. Not that XP per kill is a bad thing, but what it tends to cause and is associated with often, doesn't force, but entices people to play in away that makes little sense in the context of whats happening.

 

On top of all that most peoples example are the idea of a random encounter. At which point I think rewardless of how that situation plays out, get the same XP. You don't need XP per kill, you just need XP for 'defeating' the encounters. Weather thats because you killed everyone, scared some off and killed the remainder or snuck around... same XP for all. And as for reasons to kill that aren't XP related (or story), well, coin and items. Beyond that they're looking into crafting at which point random animals and other such things become reasons to tangle with some over-sized spider.

 

I think when they say you'll want to invest in the social skills they're talking in a much broader term then in relation to avioding combat. Ultimately they exist for other reasons then combat, and they just get applied to some situations that 'involve' combat (such as avoiding it via some means). But in the end being charming doesn't exist to get you out of combat, it exists for generally other non-combat roles and just can help you avoid it, as an aside bonus.

 

As you may guess im in favor of XP being dished out more evenly, irregardless of how you play and not via direct kill values. Perhaps having it tagged to a random encounter or quest related, or just exploring an area that happens to have enemies you can engage in. Ultimately there are more rewards then just XP, and they often help define your character more then metaphorical number of your characters combat career. Though I get the desire, at least, to what some kind of 'bonus' for fighting (outside of items and whatnot) but it's not needed, I've played plenty of games where I don't get XP per kill (that in fact have a leveling system) and frankly, they can be great. ME2 failed, mildly, not because they used a system like that but because it was all at the end of missions instead of via progress in missions. That 1 change fixes all manner of stuff, and that basic lesson can easily be applied to a more complex game like PE (and has, well before ME1 was ever released).

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Said it before but XP from killing stuff doesn't make killing stuff more enjoyable unless you already don't like it. At which point your wanting something extra for doing something you don't like doing.

 

I guess the only reason you would want an xp award for completing objectives is if it's something you already don't like. At which point you're wanting something extra for doing something you don't like doing.

 

Do you see how flimsy this reasoning is?

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Not really, getting XP for completing a quest doesn't make it more fun and my point still stands. The only reason I would say XP via progression (quests or areas or whatever) vs per kill is they're more universal to the different experiences. I've seen people grind quests they hate, just cause it gives XP. They'd never do them unless it involved XP. The only reason they 'do it' and kind of enjoy it was because of the XP. If you enjoy combat, if you enjoy the story, the quests, the exploration, the XP becomes a bonus at that point. And ultimately XP exists as a means to progress through character levels.

 

Sorry but what I said, I still hold by, to me at least its completely true. I'll do story and quests even if I don't get XP, I'll kill even if i don't get XP. I do it because I want to, because it's something my character would do, and it's because I want to experience the story. XP is just progression, better it be spread equally for all play styles and paths through the game. Putting it per kill is counter productive to that. This is not a new idea, this is ultimately how its been handled before computer games started trying to do it... and they've found that way causes a lot of bizar play habits that're counter to the roleplaying.

Edited by Adhin
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Def Con: kills owls dead

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Objective-based XP works for me. Its not how you do something that matters but that you achieve it. Never understood why a rogue would gain xp for charging like a warrior and nothing for sneaking like a rogue.


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I disagree. All it does is implement Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3. Killing things is a pointless chore in between quests that all reward a couple of skill points when you finish them. Every quest gives you a level very predictably, to the point where you wonder why there's even an Xp value present.

 

Further, it highlights the monotony of RPG combat since now every combat is just something you have to "Get through" to have any progression in the game at all. It's a real-time CRPG, you point your guys at the critter, and they go kill it. It's the failing of real time systems, either they're very basic, or the complexity they attempt to implement makes you pay more attention to the UI than you ever do to the actual combat. Legends of Grimrock's a great example, combat consists of you staring at the icons on the character panels waiting to press some buttons, and you can't look at the critter because if you do your party will suffer severe consequences.

 

Oh, ye of little faith. You're comparing PE to ME2 and ME3? If you're starting from the assumption that this game will be mediocre then why even pledge?

Edited by Infinitron

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There seems to be a lot of people here who don't want it to be like Baldur's Gate. I don't know about you but I've played Baldur's Gate between 50-100 times since 1998 and after a while I stopped reading the dialogue, I don't care about the story after that point, but I still play it because of the combat and exploration. Those were the best things about the Infinity Engine games, not the story, and not the characters. The prospect of a game that *finally* harkens back to that Baldur's Gate feeling where you can just wander around the world map at your own pleasure is what I am most excited about, but it is my fear that objective-based XP distribution will force the devs to make maps (wilderness areas especially) more linear like Icewind Dale (and to some extent BG2).

 

Yes, this is the only good argument against per-objective XP. Although it's really more of an argument about what such a system implies about the game's design in its totality.

 

I think that Obsidian was not planning to make a BG1-ish open world game, but that the larger-than-expected budget they received may make that feasible. So you may have reason for hope.

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Oh, ye of little faith. You're comparing PE to ME2 and ME3? If you're starting from the assumption that this game will be mediocre then why even pledge?

 

i was disappointed countless times by developers who made REALLY great promised, their ideas sounded amazing but the final product was for wahtever reason only mediocre...

 

Granted, none of these projects were done via a Kickstarter but to remain sceptical in todays gaming business should not be belittled as having no faith in developers

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There's no need for combat to have risk and non-combat not to have risk (or have lesser risk) though. Consider a situation where you find a bunch of bandits, you might have the options; attack them, ambush them, talk to them or avoid them, with XP given for the objective "remove the bandit threat". So trying to ambush might use the "survivalist" or "stealth" or "tracking" skill, fail your check and they notice you and it turns into a standard attack with your characters in poorer positions or worse, they ambush you. Talk to them and you may be able to get them to leave without a fight or even something elegant like employ them for your stronghold. Or maybe they decide they really want to stick lots of arrows into you instead since you've conveniently come out into the open and talked to them. You might even have more elegant solutions- steal some stuff off one group of bandits and frame another group to get them to fight, of course if your thief gets caught in the act...

 

All of these make combat seem like a punishment that only comes up when you've failed at the "right" way of doing things. As a general rule, do you enjoy doing things that are associated with just having failed? I don't know anyone who objectively enjoys cleaning up a dropped and broken glass, for example, even if life forces them into that situation.

To some extent combat should be a punishment for failing, if you're not primarily set up for a stand up fight, at least. It's a kill or be killed situation and it is eminently sensible to either avoid it, or stack the odds in your own favour- pen is mightier than the sword/ don't give a sucker an even break. And of course, should you happen to fail in your attempts then you're in a more sticky situation and actually get 'punished' for not using a straight fight tactic. It's also not applicable to all encounters- trying your diplomatic skills on a shambling zombie is unlikely to get you much reward and you're likely to have to use more traditional solutions on them. The examples were to show that you could get negatives from alternative methods as well.

 

If you want to fight because that is how your party is set up or simply because it's fun it remains an option, it's just that there are alternatives with similar rewards so that combat is not automatically the 'best' solution 90% of the time. Indeed, most of the options I outlined still involve fighting, they just involve using some imagination and making sure that that imagination gets rewarded.

 

And yes, I actually do rather enjoy failing at games because I find constant unrestrained success boring. Personally I would like a challenging game that rewards success and punishes failure and allows and rewards a variety of different approaches, so long as the distinction between success and failure is not arbitrary I won't complain.

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There seems to be a lot of people here who don't want it to be like Baldur's Gate. I don't know about you but I've played Baldur's Gate between 50-100 times since 1998 and after a while I stopped reading the dialogue, I don't care about the story after that point, but I still play it because of the combat and exploration. Those were the best things about the Infinity Engine games, not the story, and not the characters. The prospect of a game that *finally* harkens back to that Baldur's Gate feeling where you can just wander around the world map at your own pleasure is what I am most excited about, but it is my fear that objective-based XP distribution will force the devs to make maps (wilderness areas especially) more linear like Icewind Dale (and to some extent BG2).

 

Yes, this is the only good argument against per-objective XP. Although it's really more of an argument about what such a system implies about the game's design in its totality.

 

I think that Obsidian was not planning to make a BG1-ish open world game, but that the larger-than-expected budget they received may make that feasible. So you may have reason for hope.

 

[Marceror] Are you going for a more open feel to the game (ala Baldur’s Gate 1) or will it be more like Baldur’s Gate 2, where you basically couldn't turn around without bumping into a quest of some sort?

 

[Adam]

We were just talking about this on Wednesday. We definitely want to have wilderness areas like in Baldur’s Gate 1. We want to encourage exploration, but it’s definitely not going to be as aimless it was in Baldur’s Gate 1, or as tedious. We want to make fewer areas, but have more content in them, and make them a bit more focused.

 

From the recent SP interview. Kind of sounds like they want to streamline things a bit more. I don't know whether to take that positively or negatively. I suppose some of the BG wilderness areas only had 3 quests and a bunch of random encounters in them. Project Eternity will have larger areas than BG I think, so they might be able to fit a few BG wilderness areas worth of content into one area.

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I really can't understand why everyone keeps zooming right past the system where all approaches can give a reward and keep ending up with a system that not only makes no sense, but it's implementation removes the incentive from a primary component of an RPG.

 

Uh have you ever actually played Deus Ex? It is the grandaddy of alternate approach games. Or are you one of the people who pretended none of that was in the last game because a few boss fights were forced combat? Either way there are plenty of RPG elements in Deus Ex and it follows basically the same EXP model as PE so makes for a fine comparison.

 

Also I think you missed the entire point of the post. I am simply stating that, no, the power gaming "paradigm" has not moved away from combat. I went on to say that even in a objectives based reward scheme like PE many players will still choose to resolve things through combat and not stealth or other means of bypassing encounters. Many players actually prefer combat regardless of EXP rewards presence or lack there of.

 

I am all for their objectives based system and coincidentally am totally opposed to anything that would give one method of "resolution" more exp than the other. Like I said, you should be rewarded for how well you play and what style you use to accomplish your goals. You should not be rewarded based on whether or not you used one preferred method of beating an encounter. All playstyles should have the same reward at least from an exp perspective.

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If Project Eternity is going to be an open world sandbox kind of game like they have said, this seriously railroads quests and the level design and will probably make doing things way more linear, which isn't what I want to see as a player.

Well, source of confusion found. PE *isn't* a sandbox game. It's pretty much a story-driven game. And yes, EVEN in the 15-layer dungeon. They *always* said that so I am not sure how you would have thought otherwise...

 

Also, having large maps like BG with just random monsters and only 2 quests or so, yeah, can be pretty wasteful. Personally I think it's a good idea BG-exploration is still in, but not so much space is wasted on mere combat without story or purpose of doing it besides just having more combat.

Those were the best things about the Infinity Engine games, not the story, and not the characters.

The majority on this forum kindly disagrees. Yours truly included.

my fear that objective-based XP distribution will force the devs to make maps (wilderness areas especially) more linear like Icewind Dale (and to some extent BG2).

Well, they could still make it like BG. Just that besides the combat that doesn't award you you can find the occassional quest that does reward you, a special monster that rewards you.

A single good fight is more rewarding than 2 dozen meaningless fights, XP or no.

 

Fighting for the sake of just adding more fighting (the so called "thrash mob") should be avoided as much as possible.

In an open-world style game, objective-based XP for quests and objectives for exloration is a far clunkier solution to the XP system in which the Infinity Engine games already used.

True. However, this *is* a linear storyheavy game, not Skyrim. And surely you rather explore to find a good nice ruin than 3 maps copied over with a bunch of thrash mob which is then called "exploring", no?


^

 

 

I agree that that is such a stupid idiotic pathetic garbage hateful retarded scumbag evil satanic nazi like term ever created. At least top 5.

 

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For me the main reason I would like to see way more non-combat options in the game is closely related to another gripe of mine: the degenerated meaning of combat and killing. I am aware that this is just a personal thing, but I really hate how meaningless combat and killing has become in games. So much that it is kind of expected to have tons of monsters rushing at you at every opportunity or having combat as the set and fixed outcome in 80% of the main story line encounters.

 

Jut because you are a fighter does not mean drawing your sword and attacking someone should be your usual routine. Even worse with the killing. Obviously all our characters are used to killing dozens, nay hundreds of people, over the course of the game. And they shrug it off. It isn't even mentioned in any way or form that you just did somethng really terrble that at the very least should bother you greatly, especially if it happens to be the first time you killed someone or witnessed someone being killed.

 

Of course, I am pretty sure the usual reaction to this is "D'uh, this is a fantasy game with fantasy violence, it's not supposed to be realistic like that." Well, on that we are just going to disagree. I like my fantasy games with a sort of "realistic" and authentic feel to it, because then the roleplayng experience becomes much more enjoyable, at least for me.

 

So...I would really like to see them reward non-combat options a lot more than the combat approach no matter what powergamers might exploit out of that system. If that's their thing, great, let them have fun. But please give optons for others to also have fun.

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With the Health and Stamina mechanic in the game, this changes the necessity of killing everything that attacks you. It would be interesting if this is a mechanic the designers choose to use. For instance you could not kill a downed foe and let him run off, and then this triggers a world event, whether it be a shift in reputation to a faction or him coming back later in the game with a bigger and badder bunch of friends to get revenge.

 

This would be cool, I don't think it's been done before in an RPG other than when the game has interrupted you with a cut scene.

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couple points:

 

1) ps:t were the first infinity game black isle developed in-house, and the optimal powergame build were not combat-focused

 

makes a character with big wisdom were the clear Win in ps:t... which were probable a mistake. folks who made a fighter with big strength missed out on much of the game content. is a shame.

 

2) quest xp, in theory, does not shift paradigm, but makes it irrelevant

 

if you only get xp for completion o' quests, and developer not give an xp advantage to a particular style o' play, then powergame becomes somewhat irrelevant. is no Best build if is no superior reward for play style. 'course, with a crpg that does so much behind-the-screen and in-your-face number crunching, there will always be ways to finesse the system and get better results with a particular build. also, there will be builds that is more powerful in the sense that they makes successful completion o' encounters easier for player. nevertheless, quest xp should/would eliminate the major motivation for powergaming.

 

HA! Good Fun!

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"If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."Justice Louis Brandeis, Concurring, Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927)

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With the Health and Stamina mechanic in the game, this changes the necessity of killing everything that attacks you. It would be interesting if this is a mechanic the designers choose to use. For instance you could not kill a downed foe and let him run off, and then this triggers a world event, whether it be a shift in reputation to a faction or him coming back later in the game with a bigger and badder bunch of friends to get revenge.

 

This would be cool, I don't think it's been done before in an RPG other than when the game has interrupted you with a cut scene.

 

I would very much like to see conversation system being integrated into the game combat engine and be treated like a special class of spells. Only this class of "spell" call conversation would affect the NPC/monster's "morale hit points". So in combat, the options are:

 

a.) Take the guy down with swords and spell which primarily do damage to stamina and health. (spell like fear would damage morale, I guess.)

b.) Wear down the guy 's morale/will to fight with conversation. How much "damage" depend on the character conversation skill level, his reputation, heck even some of his gear's stat. A really big sword or badass looking armor could add bonus to intimidate conversation attack.

c.) Combination of both attack and conversation. eg. Disarm attack would have the added effect of doing "damage" to morale. Then, a fighter can neutralize ("kill") much more easily with an intimidation like "You can't win this."

 

This kind of system would take much more planning and resource but properly balance, it open up whole new possibilities. So for the ultra violent anti-social PC, their rep is so bad that most foes will fight to the death and their conversation skill is probably non-existant due to the kill first no talk policy. However, if a guy who let people go, would have a merciful reputation and foes are more likely to yield. The dev. can give unique conversation that only apply to certain plot NPC as quest rewards so that the player would have them ready for the fight. And the big fight during plot event to play out very differently for the violent PC, the non-violent PC or the PC with right mix of violent. The violent PC will have to fight the bad guy's to the death, the non-violent guy can talk the bad buy into running or surrendering but the the "bad" guy is someone who would respect and join the PC with the right mix of "violence" and have a similar moral (not morale) outlook.

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That sounds like a system that could get in the way and would ultimately only be useful against humanoid enemies. It's kind of interesting but I imagine most of the social skills that can double as means to avoid some fights will be fights that only start 'with' conversations (or have scripted mid-combat talking prompts). That and random encounter stuff where you get a choice what to do depending on if you get ambushed or not. In either situation i can see reputation + skill being taken into account for what your doing.

 

In either case its not the kind of thing I would want attached to 'every' possible fight with a person, and, ultimately feels like it would be best served with what I said above instead of part of the every day combat. Also this whole bad guy good guy thing screams of black and white morality systems. Also there is no reason a 'bad guy' and another 'bad guy' would turn into a buddy cop movie. If they're really that revolting of a person they'd more then likely just try to kill whoever it is regardless of that persons moral outlook. if they want to throw into some story point the 'bad guy' asking you to join them and that is literally an option it should be just that, a player choice option.


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That sounds like a system that could get in the way and would ultimately only be useful against humanoid enemies. It's kind of interesting but I imagine most of the social skills that can double as means to avoid some fights will be fights that only start 'with' conversations (or have scripted mid-combat talking prompts). That and random encounter stuff where you get a choice what to do depending on if you get ambushed or not. In either situation i can see reputation + skill being taken into account for what your doing.

 

Not if the conversation system is completely integrated and not apart from combat so there is not any transition from combat mode to non combat mode. PC get into an encounter, be it indoor or outdoor. NPC initial reaction depend on combination of stats like faction, reputation etc... and also the NPC's agenda such as, if they are a merchant, they may approach and trade and if the NPCs are actually animal or monster, it is just a simple fight or flee.

 

For example, as soon as the encounter begin, parameters are compare to determine either approach or ignore PC peacefully as oppose to attack or flee from PC. Let's say the NPC choose to ignore the PC, the PC can get to engage the NPC either by initiating conversation or (if the player is violent and antisocial) attack and rob the NPC. If a fight breakout, the PC can stop the fight by killing the foes or talk them down.

 

The good guy, bad guy examples above are just that, an example in the simple context of good and bad. Here is a more complex scenario that is possible. PC encounter an extremely xenophobic settlement (eg. a wood elf faction). These elves will attack any outsider on sight. So, at low level, the PC either avoid or kill this faction. For those who avoid spilling any blood early on by fleeing. The can eventually level up to the point that they can use attack or spell like disarm, sleep that could incapacitate and chip down the Morale (not moral) bar, the PC would get to conclude encounter without terrible blood shed thus earning them enough of the wood elves faction point that you can start a civil conversation, thus opening up more quest and plot line... etc.

 

It is going to be very hard to balance and debug, no question. And I am sure if the system balance is off, some powergamer could min-max a Messiah speech character build that could make every man, woman would automatically "surrender" in their mere presence. But properly balance, there would be a much wider range of interaction. And yes, this system won't be very helpful to non-sentient creatures that could understand the PC but story driven cRPG is more about characters who can relate with each other than fighting horde of monsters.

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Conversation would have to pause combat one way or another, it'll be a different mode. It'll involve picking options. The only way to do it otherwise is via a turn based system or to handle combat in conversation. And to all of that I say no. Combat and Conversation are separate systems and should be handled separately. Outside of a purely turn based game, or doing everything via voice command (which also sucks balls) there's no real fun way to do that.

 

In either case your newer example instead of good/bad wouldn't require to tie in the 2 systems outside of a basic scripted event. And there is a good chance they would rather use the scripted event in a more universal method otherwise that whole wood elf thing would end up being a giant chunk of content majority of people wouldn't see and would only later learn about this hidden content that requires a lot of drastic measures to get into.

 

I guess my point of all this is, they don't need to be the same system to do some of the major points your saying. And there is little reason to allow 'starting' up of a conversation mid fight. In the end all the instances where it would be applicable would require specific scripting in either way, and it'll all end up being specific story points. So just... let them do it how they're going to do it instead of trying to merge two systems to get the same thing done, more work for no greater pay offs pointless.


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I for one would definitely like to see dialog options integrated into combat, but only in a very simple way. Since the system is realtime with pause the pausing part itself wouldn't be a problem as long as the dialog options could be handled from the combat interface. Just having options like demand surrender/ask for parlay/surrender would be great and they could easily be handled as actions that take some time to perform and either succeed or not depending on how the battle is going, how diplomatic/intimidating the character speaking is and what are the exact circumstances.

 

Now, if there is no common language/the enemy is an ooze/the enemy just isn't afraid of you/the enemy wants you dead, this clearly wouldn't work and the time would be wasted, so just spamming surrender wouldn't be much of a tactic. This would however make possible all kinds of roleplaying opportunities like leaving some parts of a mob alive for interrogation or surrendering to city guards rather than making a bad situation worse or halting a fight that is going badly and dangerously for both parties. This wouldn't necessarily mean that every situation had any use for these options, but just having the possibility with some enemies would make combat more varied and interesting.

 

In the same vein, I would also appreciate it if there would be weapons/combat options that were non-lethal. That would give a generally well-meaning party the possibility to use combat as a solution in situations where they had to get around someone that didn't deserve to die. I would gladly accept that non-lethal combat would be less efficient than lethal methods and it would be my choice whether it would be worth the risk.

 

And now to the kill XP issue. I definitely like the idea of getting rid of general kill XP and replacing it with well thought out quest XP rewards. That said, I don't see why there couldn't be room for kill XP in certain situations when appropriate. I still don't see any reason for kill XP from the point of view of exploring. Shouldn't the exploring be it's own reward? Finding all those interesting places and the secrets in all the nooks and crannies, and yes, finding wolves and all kinds of aggressive creatures and then deciding whether fighting through them is worth the risk. The reward for fighting will be that you get to explore further instead of fleeing to the security of civilization with your tail between your legs. Besides, from my perspective, if my reaction to seeing a pack of wolves near my group is "****!", that sounds like a somewhat reasonable approximation of what my character is feeling...

 

EDIT: tl;dr: Simple diplomatic and non-lethal options in combat, YAY! Kill XP, not necessary.

Edited by Arhiippa

And yes, I know my profile picture is blasphemy on this forum, but I didn't have the audacity to use The Nameless One.

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With the Health and Stamina mechanic in the game, this changes the necessity of killing everything that attacks you. It would be interesting if this is a mechanic the designers choose to use. For instance you could not kill a downed foe and let him run off, and then this triggers a world event, whether it be a shift in reputation to a faction or him coming back later in the game with a bigger and badder bunch of friends to get revenge.

That does sound pretty cool.

And a similar effect could be achieved with spells like stun or hold. Just incapacitate and go.

 

And of course, in good fashion, it can bit you in the ass, if the person you left behind comes back with a little reinforcement as you said, or be a good thing, giving you a friend in a fight/situation you otherwise be alone etc.

 

Again... I like!


^

 

 

I agree that that is such a stupid idiotic pathetic garbage hateful retarded scumbag evil satanic nazi like term ever created. At least top 5.

 

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Formerly known as BattleWookiee/BattleCookiee

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When it comes to the option of solving a quest violent or nonviolent, for me the choice is not only affected by the promised revard, but the compexitiy of the used method. More general, let Q be an instance in the game and A and B different methods to solve it. If you want to give the player a fair choice between A and B, you have to make sure that both A and B have an equal powerfull impulse on the game (that are revards or story based stuff) AND both A and B are equal in the complexity of game mechanics.

 

I'm sorry, I didn't read the whole thread, so I hope this has not been said already.

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Conversation would have to pause combat one way or another, it'll be a different mode. It'll involve picking options. The only way to do it otherwise is via a turn based system or to handle combat in conversation. And to all of that I say no. Combat and Conversation are separate systems and should be handled separately. Outside of a purely turn based game, or doing everything via voice command (which also sucks balls) there's no real fun way to do that.

 

Like you said, it would definitely work in a turn base system. But I really don't see a problem of pausing the action when conversation occur. eg. Player select "Let's talk this out" instead of attacking or firing magic missiles. If the check fail, combat as usual. If it succeed, the foe just say,"okay, let's put away our weapons and talk about this.". The Combat pauses and wait for the player for further input (or if the dev. like, give a time allowance for the PC to put away their weapon), either select more conversation option or it the PC are not very honorable and just want to use "conversation" as a tactic to sieze the initiative. They can then select from their list of attack or spell. Ding them for reputation, karma or what not. The point is, the entire dialog tree is a list of available "spells" and what is available depends on whether the intended target is a plot related. If it is just random monster, then the available speech is limited just like the run of the mill NPC in town and likely be the "Ask for Parlay" option that Arhiipa suggested above. If it is a plot character, then there are more available dialogs and they can be specific to this NPC.

 

In either case your newer example instead of good/bad wouldn't require to tie in the 2 systems outside of a basic scripted event. And there is a good chance they would rather use the scripted event in a more universal method otherwise that whole wood elf thing would end up being a giant chunk of content majority of people wouldn't see and would only later learn about this hidden content that requires a lot of drastic measures to get into.

 

The situation is not too different the more sandbox game like Skrimm. You attack a certain faction early on, their town are not accessible. Some may argue it adds to replay value.

 

I guess my point of all this is, they don't need to be the same system to do some of the major points your saying. And there is little reason to allow 'starting' up of a conversation mid fight. In the end all the instances where it would be applicable would require specific scripting in either way, and it'll all end up being specific story points. So just... let them do it how they're going to do it instead of trying to merge two systems to get the same thing done, more work for no greater pay offs pointless.

 

I hear your point about the complexity and maybe you are right about building a separate subsystem to handle dialog trees once dialog get started with plot characters. My point is to bring the dialog option into combat. It added an extra dimension to combat other than the weapon and spell dimension. Further, reward in the form of xp doesn't just apply to reducing Hitpoint to 0, it could be reducing morale/will to fight to 0. There could then be many new and interesting scenario that can come out of it.

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