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Attributes - Fixed or Increasing?

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I would rather they improve over time. Again, not D&D, and a system that isn't hard line on set values probably gives a little more wiggle room to the devs on how they want the mechanics of their game to work.

 

The issue I have with point buy is that you sometimes have to figure out your whole character's progression several 10's of levels ahead of time. The point-buy system in Arcanum while being very good, has me figuring out exactly what points I'll be purchasing until I hit level 50.

 

I would need to know what the maximum level is for this game, and the costs of buying points (does each attribute cost the same at all levels?), how many points I get per level, and basically planning everything completely out from the beginning of the game. I did have to eventually restart my game several times as I tried to figure out what I was actually aiming for for my character and this was a little frustrating.

 

Of course, it also allows you to "fix" any problems you have with the direction your character is going as you play the game. Say for example that dexterity is more important in-game than you actually thought. Well you don't have to start a new game now, because you can just shift and adjust your strategy to take that into consideration.

 

They both have pro's and cons. I like fixed numbers. It reminds me of BG2. Arcanum's system was fun too - it was just really different than the AD&D rules I was used to.

 

Edit: apologies about the double post.

Edited by Hormalakh

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I would prefer for abilities to stay static with maybe a few modifiers from spells/consumables. Items should directly effect performance values instead of stats. I love the SPECIAL system though, so I am biased.

Edited by Gurkog
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Ve

Increasing slowly. I liked the way NWN2 (via 3.5) handled it, because it gave you a chance to redirect your character based on what you were perceiving to be useful in the game, without making a wholesale adjustment.

 

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So I see some people that want increasing stats over time. How about your companions?

We can be quite sure that the same progression that applies for the main character will also appear for companions, or am I wrong (BG-system party, every companion will also level up)?

So would you like to be able to change the stats of your companions, taking away character-specific weaknesses like low intelligence and thus making it harder to write dialogue for the companions? I think if we have strong companions there are only two possibilites a) you only increase stats of your main character and have different way of leveling up for ncps or b) you have fixed stats or only very small increases for all characters in the game.

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So I see some people that want increasing stats over time. How about your companions?

We can be quite sure that the same progression that applies for the main character will also appear for companions, or am I wrong (BG-system party, every companion will also level up)?

So would you like to be able to change the stats of your companions, taking away character-specific weaknesses like low intelligence and thus making it harder to write dialogue for the companions? I think if we have strong companions there are only two possibilites a) you only increase stats of your main character and have different way of leveling up for ncps or b) you have fixed stats or only very small increases for all characters in the game.

Well... yeah, probably. I - and I think (haven't looked too closely) most others that favour increasing attributes over the course of the game - also favour very slow progression. Not Dragon Age's 5(?) points per level, or even good old PST's 1 point per level, but something more like NWN2. Four attribute points over the course of the game isn't going to turn Minsc into Imoen. And if Obsidian feels that a particular low stat is essential to that character - like Minsc and his low intelligence - then they could just throw some trait on him ("Kicked In Head By Donkey" or some-such noise) to justify locking that particular stat down.


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This is one where I definitely prefer the DnD approach. We knew what values represented below average, average, above average, exceptional... all the way to godly. There could be dramatic increases over the life of a character, due to period increases granted at level ups, magical equipment, feats, etc. But there was always a sense of what those values meant in comparison to "average". With a diablo type system where you start with 15 strength, and eventually reach 400, I really get lost as to what that means. For example, can a 10 intelligence person and a 350 intelligence person even stand next to one another without their heads exploding? Such huge gaps just feel way too... gaping.

 

I REALLY hope the range of these numbers will be limited in a manner similar to that of DnD.

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I'm going with fixed as well. Raising a base attribute should be really difficult for all of them, if not impossible for some, at least without some major cost and quest and plot choices should also affect possibilities.

Edited by kenup
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What do we think about the actual statistic descriptors? Should they be symbiotic?

 

For example, the relationship between Constitution and Strength. Is it feasible to be 18 STR / 3 CON? Really. If you are going to have point buy should there not be a mechanism to ensure that symbiotic characteristics are realistic? So if you want a high strength fighter he has to be fit enough (i.e. sliding scale of constitution) to support that? And vice versa.

 

So if you want 16 STR you need, say (plucks figure from air) at least 10 CON.

 

While we're at it, how can a character with 3 INT have 18 CHA? If we leave aside the physical perfection of the archetypical dumb blonde, CHA is meant to be about personality and persuasion. How can someone with 3 INT, about as smart as a herd animal, benefit from 18 CHA? It's nuts. So, to make sense of it you have to invest across symbiotic stats to build high-performing characters.

 

Ditto the relationship between WIS and INT (and so on).

 

Lastly, four statistics that are meaningful versus six for the sake of it?

 

STR (brigaded STR and CON)

DEX (as is)

INT (brigaded INT & WIS)

PERS (Personality, brigaded WIS & CHA)


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I always liked the ability to distribute my points the way i see fit in an RPG... To some extent. Rolling and rolling over and over and hoping for that perfect roll can get time consuming and annoying. But I liked the "Every ability score starts at 8 and you have xx points to distrubute among them." Sometimes these were further restricted by allowing only a certain ammount of points to be added into one score to prevent min-maxing, or hard capping skills by race/class/gender. But sometimes I just want that rock headed meat shield with an 8 INT and 18/00 STR. And I also liked how some games allowed your ability scores to go up after a few levels by a point. This could also be restriced by only allowing you to put points into a stat relative to something you've done over those few levels. Ex: You are a mage and hit lv 5 so you now have 1 point to add to an ability score, you've stayed in the back and haven't really been hit at all, or dealt any mele damage, so you can only put that point into int/dex/wis/cha or something. Progression in an RPG is at its core. You should either start as that bad @$$ hero with better than average scores, or atleast slowly progress to the stuff of legends. Grabing a bunch of magical gear and having buffed stats is something any peasant could do if they happend to find your gear laying in an unsecured chest. YOU are the hero because of YOU, not just what you bought/found/stole. And when making or leveling a character you want a degree of control over the randomness of a dice roll. PLUSSSS then there is no "mine is better than yours," only "mine is different than yours."

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Rolling for attributes annoys the hell out of me on the grounds that.

 

You allow me to choose my class/role - Thus allowing me to take an educated risk in that by playing this way I will bring x,y and Zebra to a party.

 

You allow me to choose my starting skills/weapon choices/armour etc.. - Again allowing me to take a risk that through my game I will be able to best use my abilities.

 

And then you take away my choice to finalise my character creation by spreading attributes that would benefit the above choices and put them into other areas making the above choices potentially defunct and extremely underpowered for the entire game even with increasing attributes.

 

I once rolled a 6 for my Strength attribute (out of 25) for my Barbarian. Needless to say he was useless as a damage dealer making my skill choices/armour choices null and void - I quit the game and left my friends to play on.

 

I don't mind set attributes.

I don't mind increasing attributes.

 

I'm happy with either way but for the love of god don't make my starting attributes random! I want to make my character not pray for dumb luck on the roll of the dice!


Juneau & Alphecca Daley currently tearing up Tyria.

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I want stats that we can increase now and again, either automatically by use of related skills, or by player choice, getting points to put up every nth level.

Though I am a roller in the IE games, a lot of frustration can be skipped if you have point buy instead.

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I think rolling should be an alternate option, like, some box you tick somewhere, but for point buy to be standard. Some people love the feel of rolling stats, but for the most part point buy is best. A lot of people might just tick that box because if you roll hundreds of times you could get great stats but yeah, I still think it's good. It's single player, it's no big deal if some people have slightly stronger characters than others. BG2 had stuff like Kensai/Mages and Berzerker/Clerics anyways, so. And if you play with expert mode you should not be allowed to roll more than... A couple times. If that.

Edited by Electricall
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For example, the relationship between Constitution and Strength. Is it feasible to be 18 STR / 3 CON? Really. If you are going to have point buy should there not be a mechanism to ensure that symbiotic characteristics are realistic? So if you want a high strength fighter he has to be fit enough (i.e. sliding scale of constitution) to support that? And vice versa.

 

So if you want 16 STR you need, say (plucks figure from air) at least 10 CON.

 

While we're at it, how can a character with 3 INT have 18 CHA? If we leave aside the physical perfection of the archetypical dumb blonde, CHA is meant to be about personality and persuasion. How can someone with 3 INT, about as smart as a herd animal, benefit from 18 CHA? It's nuts. So, to make sense of it you have to invest across symbiotic stats to build high-performing characters.

 

I can see the logic in your post - and there is a great deal of it. I do think there should be exceptions in the "sliding" requirement - perhaps only for companions/NPCs. Charisma wasn't only personality and appearence, it was a sort of strength of personality - see the paladin's save bonuses, and a few other instances (turn dead). This is different than wisdom's strength of mind in that personality is like self-belief or self-worth, and wisdom is more like strength of belief in something else. I think pinning one attribute to another works better with more attributes rather than less - a lot of jRPGs have dexterity and agility, one being coordination the other speed, both needed to be an able rogue.

 

I think less may be better, but it depends - I liked some of the feats in D&D like spellcasting finesse and weapon finesse - both thirdy party, and very hard to balance, but they opened up a lot of doors. Basically, one allowed you to change your spellcasting attribute to any other mental score, and the other worked for subbing dex for strength (to an extent). In our games, the DM always made us get to level four before taking it, and make a certain number of skill investments and roleplay uses of skills attached to the desired attribute - but a CHA based wizard makes a really good liar. These meant that even though you have the same number of attributes, the number of variables in builds was great. I also wouldn't mind an inclusion of a "luck" attribute, if it is done well.

 

I am more a fan of skill symbiosis - that set trap and detect traps give a bonus to each other so long as they are nearly the same - though this depends fully on what and how many skills we end up with. I think whatever the case, the increase in attributes should be scaled to however many attributes we have - with four, we should only increase them very rarely, as they would likely dictate a good bit.

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What do we think about the actual statistic descriptors? Should they be symbiotic?

 

For example, the relationship between Constitution and Strength. Is it feasible to be 18 STR / 3 CON? Really. If you are going to have point buy should there not be a mechanism to ensure that symbiotic characteristics are realistic? So if you want a high strength fighter he has to be fit enough (i.e. sliding scale of constitution) to support that? And vice versa.

 

So if you want 16 STR you need, say (plucks figure from air) at least 10 CON.

 

While we're at it, how can a character with 3 INT have 18 CHA? If we leave aside the physical perfection of the archetypical dumb blonde, CHA is meant to be about personality and persuasion. How can someone with 3 INT, about as smart as a herd animal, benefit from 18 CHA? It's nuts. So, to make sense of it you have to invest across symbiotic stats to build high-performing characters.

 

Ditto the relationship between WIS and INT (and so on).

 

Lastly, four statistics that are meaningful versus six for the sake of it?

 

STR (brigaded STR and CON)

DEX (as is)

INT (brigaded INT & WIS)

PERS (Personality, brigaded WIS & CHA)

I like your idea on symbiotic attributes, but I disagree on the last part. In fact it's because of the possible symbiosis that I disagree. Physical stats can be raised, to a certain extent, through physical training. On the other hand one can become wiser, or better their personality but their base intelligence, not so much. So what I was thinking is that, in case we have a more hybrid system than fixed or otherwise, intelligence shouldn't be available for increase on level ups. Instead wisdom and/or experience(as long as the intelligence is "positive") should give bonuses to INT checks in most things. Intelligence still matters more for its own responsibilities, but experience and wisdom can add partly to "intelligence requirements". So separated INT PERS and WIS might actually be a really good thing.

 

Just my .02.

Edited by kenup
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Rolling for attributes annoys the hell out of me on the grounds that.

 

You allow me to choose my class/role - Thus allowing me to take an educated risk in that by playing this way I will bring x,y and Zebra to a party.

 

You allow me to choose my starting skills/weapon choices/armour etc.. - Again allowing me to take a risk that through my game I will be able to best use my abilities.

 

And then you take away my choice to finalise my character creation by spreading attributes that would benefit the above choices and put them into other areas making the above choices potentially defunct and extremely underpowered for the entire game even with increasing attributes.

 

I once rolled a 6 for my Strength attribute (out of 25) for my Barbarian. Needless to say he was useless as a damage dealer making my skill choices/armour choices null and void - I quit the game and left my friends to play on.

 

 

You're making quite an assumption with the comment I put in bold. Have you ever played Baldur's Gate? Or Temple of Elemental Evil, for that matter? In Baldur's Gate you rolled your stats, but you could reallocate your attribute points however you wanted. You got a 6 STR for your fighter and an 18 INT? No problem, lower your fighter's INT to 6, and raise the Strength to 18. Or, just reroll a few times and wait for an overall better set of values.

 

In ToEE you could roll your stats as an option. The game allowed you to assign your rolls to whatever attribute you wished. Your thief ended up with 10 INT and 18 WIS? No problem, just swap the values.

 

If the option to roll stats is given, I'd say it's highly doubtful that you'll be unable to adjust your rolls in a manner similar to those I describe above.

Edited by Marceror
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"Now to find a home for my other staff."
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I've played BG and many others which you roll and can reallocate, which is perfectly fine if not annoying but it allows you to assign numbers and for those who like the random aspect of it then it suits them as well as those of us who do not like our character creation to be random. I was just stating that in some games you can't reallocate - which as I said, takes away my choice and plays to dumb luck.

 

I remember one old game - Can't remember what it was called - Text based where it was random and you had 3 rerolls. I remember restarting the cartridge 4 times because my 'Wizzard' rolled Strength and Dexterity 9 times in a row.

 

I'm happy either way in terms of the OP with set stats or growing. What I would hate would be if it was a random roll of the stats and I had no choice - But from what I've read from Josh he feels similarly in that - rolling for starting stats is just dumb luck and hopefully this means it won't be set that way.

 

edit - I'm not saying that PE will even go that way - Just my opinion on rolling for stats.

Edited by Juneau

Juneau & Alphecca Daley currently tearing up Tyria.

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Mind you, one of the things in Arcanum that rocked was the little box on your character sheet that told you how many times you'd re-rolled your stats!

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Mind you, one of the things in Arcanum that rocked was the little box on your character sheet that told you how many times you'd re-rolled your stats!

 

ToEE had this as well. When you selected a character to add them to your party, you could see how many rerolls were required to get those 4 18s!


"Now to find a home for my other staff."
My Project Eternity Interview with Adam Brennecke

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The big issue I have with games that let you increase attributes is that they often let you "max out" the attributes. In the endgame, all characters should not be equally capable of filling all roles. They should be the result of choices made to their builds and unable to perform tasks that can be done by characters who made a completely different set of choices. I don't want to have 10s(or 100s or whatever the cap is on this game's attribute system) on every single attribute for all endgame-strength characters. They have to be mechanically distinct.

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Both have there ups and downs I suppose. I wouldn't mind a ToEE style system with rolling for stats myself,but I did play a lot of D&D growing up, so that may have something to do with it.

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Judging by whats been said by the devs I'd speculate we will end up with some sort of point buy - that leveling will be slow but the changes from level to level will feel like significant growth to the charatcer and that we will likely get to around level 12ish by games end...

 

I'm good with all that... :yes:


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