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Dumarus

Disadvantages

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Hi to everyone.

 

How do you see adding some disadvantages for your character just by adding disadvantage to some of main characteristics?

 

Only this ones that will be applied with no effort for creating them.

I would love to make hard hearing character that have some high disadvantage to listening or with one blind eye that has problems with seeing.

Or character with one paralyzed hand that cannot use it for fighting.

 

Only you will know that it is there and it will be affecting gameplay in some minor way.

 

You can ask, "what's the point?".

 

 

I played a lot of RPG characters in my life and I was always trying to make its story most convenient all of the team.

At the beginning I was making deep background with a lot of hints for a game master, how to use it in main plot.

 

After some time it was obvious that my characters will have some background, my connections will show up in some day and I have some mystery in my "backpack". So I left it behind and started to create simple stories and occasionally adding some mental and body disadvantages.

 

Sometimes it was one blind eye, colorblindness, lack of ear, hard hearing and so on to most extreme case that was lack of whole arm of Half Orc Fighter. Mental disadvantages where simple: every kind of fears and addictions. Fear of water was funny because every time that we get to river bank they have to carry me over and I was resisting because I was afraid. At one day those bastards put my unconscious with club to drag me over.

 

Fun is an answer.

However I can role play it in my head so don't bother, I will not be mourning about lack of it in the game :)

 

Thanks

Dumar

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Disadvantages as handled in Fallout 1+2+NV Traits and Arcanum Backgrounds would be a good idea, where you get an advantage and a disadvantage to balance it out. Like hitting harder but slower or getting a perception bonus with glasses and penalty without. Combining a disadvantage with an advantage is much easier to balance and make interesting than using a point based system like GURPS, MWWG or the like.

 

Or do you mean optional disadvantages with no benefit to them at all?

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Or do you mean optional disadvantages with no benefit to them at all?

 

I like situations when you can make choices and benefit from them even when you get disadvantages too.

In point based systems it is easier to achieve desired effect and get it work right.

 

IMHO disadvantages should have bigger impact than advantage.

In point based system like: +3 = -5

So you can be better at one thing than everyone but you will be really bad in something else.

 

Dumar

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Or do you mean optional disadvantages with no benefit to them at all?

 

I like situations when you can make choices and benefit from them even when you get disadvantages too.

In point based systems it is easier to achieve desired effect and get it work right.

 

IMHO disadvantages should have bigger impact than advantage.

In point based system like: +3 = -5

So you can be better at one thing than everyone but you will be really bad in something else.

 

Dumar

That's what the Fallout traits and Arcanum backgrounds do, most of the time. Though they are named after the advantage. They give you some benefit for a "bigger" disadvantage. That disadvantage might seem crippling in the character creation screen, but once you define your character it doesn't really matter. Except from Gifted, that's one hell of a cheat trait.

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Considering the team working on PE, I would say yes, it's very, very possible. I don't remember if they have commented on backgrounds/traits though.

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One interesting idea would be a forced disadvantage from the magical incident the PC observes. It would give an actual reason for the PC to go around the world trying to discover just what happened and how it can be fixed.

Maybe not a simple "deaf in one ear" or "can't smell" but something more complex. Or something complex that causes a simpler one.

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I actually tend to dislike mechanical disadvantages in games because I dislike "situational modifier creep". If you want to put situational differences into a game, then create different situations. Want people to find the night oppressive? Don't give them combat penalties. Make it so much darker that people run off cliffs or straight into nasty monsters they couldn't see.

 

I suppose some mechanical disadvantages on characters could work okay--having a character move, attack, or cast more slowly, for instance. Having them become fatigued faster. But colorblindness? Not so much.


Grand Rhetorist of the Obsidian Order

If you appeal to "realism" about a video game feature, you are wrong. Go back and try again.

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Which reminds me I thought the "beat with the ugly stick" trait in Arcanum was quite fun, nice mechanical advantages and disadvantages. Only work if we have seperate charisma and beauty stats however.


Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

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One interesting idea would be a forced disadvantage from the magical incident the PC observes. It would give an actual reason for the PC to go around the world trying to discover just what happened and how it can be fixed.

Maybe not a simple "deaf in one ear" or "can't smell" but something more complex. Or something complex that causes a simpler one.

It sounds like that 'disadvantage' will be part of the story, so it's not like an optional feature that players can choose. Still, an interesting idea.

 

Personally, I like to see balanced advantages and disadvantages in items because they create a choice other than "what's the best item" period.

Edited by rjshae
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"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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I'm in favor of pretty much all additional options that allow us to further customize our characters. This one is no exception.


"When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him." - Jonathan Swift

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It sounds like that 'disadvantage' will be part of the story, so it's not like an optional feature that players can choose. Still, an interesting idea.

 

Just as long as they don't do it like the spirit meter in MotB. It was a pointless mechanic for classes that didn't need to rest much, and in some cases HUGELY painful for casters.

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Grand Rhetorist of the Obsidian Order

If you appeal to "realism" about a video game feature, you are wrong. Go back and try again.

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It would be very nice to see a feature like this as a lot of people above have said. Having a trait such as "limp" for example whereby your character can not run and maybe has an animation when walking would be nice to see. No advantage because of it, you just cant run or move slower. You could have an option to choose background and then on top of that maybe 3 to 5 character traits. It would be a nice nod to those who want to role play a character and you would not have to select such a trait at all if you were not interested.

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I'm actually stuck in Arcanum due to this very mechanic. I chose the 'Miracle Operation' background and fell in love with the character despite the horrible disadvantage it's giving me at the moment. I just can't seem to put this character down and start an easier one for my first time through because of what that background adds to my role playing experience.

 

If you couldn't tell, I wholeheartedly support backgrounds and random traits (advantages and disadvantages with explanation) in P:E.

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I love having advantages and disadvantages. Fallout did this pretty well and I'd love to see something similar be repeated. I prefer that disadvantages and advantages be totally separate however.

 

I don't like it when they're tied in together, like 1 option that says hits harder but moves slower. Maybe I want to do a strong character that moves fast and would rather take a disadvantage related to social skills. So to obsidian I can only ask, please, please, please include disadvantages and advantages but preferably don't make them tied together and let us pick and choose which ones we'd like from both categories.


K is for Kid, a guy or gal just like you. Don't be in such a hurry to grow up, since there's nothin' a kid can't do.

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Btw, other games did this as well. The ones I can list off the top of my head are Arcanum, all the good Fallouts (1, 2, NV, Tactics, not 3 or BoS), Lionheart, Vampire Bloodlines, and Neverwinter Nights 2.

 

I really like advantages being matched with disadvantages btw, so you don't for example get a big advantage to hitting harder and just take a penalty to ranged combat. And I like it limited so you don't end up with a guy that's dangerous because of the points he got from being mute and illiterate being put into combat skills. Or a character with a crippling phobia of water and fish in a world where neither are likely to ever come up. (Saw the last one in a SLA Industries campaign more than a decade ago)

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Btw, other games did this as well. The ones I can list off the top of my head are Arcanum, all the good Fallouts (1, 2, NV, Tactics, not 3 or BoS), Lionheart, Vampire Bloodlines, and Neverwinter Nights 2.

 

 

Being a malkavian in Bloodlines was the coolest disadventage ever! :D (for those wo did not play Bloodlines: malkavians go mad after their transformation, and all your answares are like a loonatic's words, but they have insight in their madness and foretell things that did not happen yet, altough the malkavian does not always realize this, because this insight is the clan's blood's curse, the insight of their ancestor. Perfect for replaying the game and real fun :D note: i do not recomend creating a malkavian as your first character)


"The very existence of flame-throwers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves: You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done." - George Carlin (RIP!)

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Btw, other games did this as well. The ones I can list off the top of my head are Arcanum, all the good Fallouts (1, 2, NV, Tactics, not 3 or BoS), Lionheart, Vampire Bloodlines, and Neverwinter Nights 2.

 

 

Being a malkavian in Bloodlines was the coolest disadventage ever! :D (for those wo did not play Bloodlines: malkavians go mad after their transformation, and all your answares are like a loonatic's words, but they have insight in their madness and foretell things that did not happen yet, altough the malkavian does not always realize this, because this insight is the clan's blood's curse, the insight of their ancestor. Perfect for replaying the game and real fun :D note: i do not recomend creating a malkavian as your first character)

In addition to the clan bonuses/weaknesses, there were also "histories", which were apparently fully functional but removed from the game anyway. There are mods out there that put them back in. What histories you had available to you depended on your clan and sometimes gender. A Nosferatu could take a glass eye for +2 intimidation and -1 perception, or a Malkavian could take ninja for +1 brawl and melee and crippled firearms, or a Tremere could take eldritch prodigy for way stronger thaumaturgy but worse EXP gains...

 

I love traits/histories/whatever.

 

Of course, it's pretty easy to build a character in such a way that the disadvantage never, ever comes in to play.


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Btw, other games did this as well. The ones I can list off the top of my head are Arcanum, all the good Fallouts (1, 2, NV, Tactics, not 3 or BoS), Lionheart, Vampire Bloodlines, and Neverwinter Nights 2.

 

 

Being a malkavian in Bloodlines was the coolest disadventage ever! :D (for those wo did not play Bloodlines: malkavians go mad after their transformation, and all your answares are like a loonatic's words, but they have insight in their madness and foretell things that did not happen yet, altough the malkavian does not always realize this, because this insight is the clan's blood's curse, the insight of their ancestor. Perfect for replaying the game and real fun :D note: i do not recomend creating a malkavian as your first character)

In addition to the clan bonuses/weaknesses, there were also "histories", which were apparently fully functional but removed from the game anyway. There are mods out there that put them back in. What histories you had available to you depended on your clan and sometimes gender. A Nosferatu could take a glass eye for +2 intimidation and -1 perception, or a Malkavian could take ninja for +1 brawl and melee and crippled firearms, or a Tremere could take eldritch prodigy for way stronger thaumaturgy but worse EXP gains...

 

Exactly, I was talking about the histories that you could activate with a command when launching the game. They were pretty buggy, which is probably why they were disabled, and if I looked through more than a few of them, I remember that it crashed my game. Still, they added a lot to the game IMHO.

 

Some games treat gender as a combined advantage/disadvantage as well, as it changes your stats. Both Arcanum (which is up front about it) and Oblivion does this for instance. That's not to mention games that treat gender as a huge disadvantage, such as Mount And Blade (though again, they're up front about it).

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Drakensang: River of Time allowed players a set number of experience points to distribute among skills and the opion to choose disadvantages that increase the number (while giving a penalty to something) or advantages that decrease the number (while boosting something). The only possible problem with it was that picking disadvantages that do not effect class builds was easy to do.


Grandiose statements, cryptic warnings, blind fanboyisim and an opinion that leaves no room for argument and will never be dissuaded. Welcome to the forums, you'll go far in this place my boy, you'll go far!

 

The people who are a part of the "Fallout Community" have been refined and distilled over time into glittering gems of hatred.

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Btw, other games did this as well. The ones I can list off the top of my head are Arcanum, all the good Fallouts (1, 2, NV, Tactics, not 3 or BoS), Lionheart, Vampire Bloodlines, and Neverwinter Nights 2.

 

 

Being a malkavian in Bloodlines was the coolest disadventage ever! :D (for those wo did not play Bloodlines: malkavians go mad after their transformation, and all your answares are like a loonatic's words, but they have insight in their madness and foretell things that did not happen yet, altough the malkavian does not always realize this, because this insight is the clan's blood's curse, the insight of their ancestor. Perfect for replaying the game and real fun :D note: i do not recomend creating a malkavian as your first character)

In addition to the clan bonuses/weaknesses, there were also "histories", which were apparently fully functional but removed from the game anyway. There are mods out there that put them back in. What histories you had available to you depended on your clan and sometimes gender. A Nosferatu could take a glass eye for +2 intimidation and -1 perception, or a Malkavian could take ninja for +1 brawl and melee and crippled firearms, or a Tremere could take eldritch prodigy for way stronger thaumaturgy but worse EXP gains...

 

I love traits/histories/whatever.

 

Of course, it's pretty easy to build a character in such a way that the disadvantage never, ever comes in to play.

 

In the last patch (or fan-made patch, idk) they actually put these back into the game... also was great to play the game with the clan quest mod :)

 

Speaking of mods... KOTOR 2 had a huge ammount of content that had to be left out, but the files were on the discs. I'm rather sure the release date was pressured by Lucas Arts... But there's a content restoration mod, I recommend playing kotor2 with that :D also there's a mod that puts a left out planet back into the game (planet of droids)


"The very existence of flame-throwers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves: You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done." - George Carlin (RIP!)

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Disadvantages were also an optional rule in the third edition of Dungeons&Dragons. They're a great mechanic to add depth to your character - taking them would give you a free feat. That means you pick a flaw that does not affect your character at all (like a penalty to ranged combat for a melee fighter, or a penalty to your fighting ability for a wizard) and get additional power to counter your severe penalty. That's swallowing the biter pill! Like real people with disabilities, gaming characters with disabilities just ignore them and have plenty of cool benefits instead. :teehee:

 

All in all, though, I'm very sceptical towards disabilities that give you benefits. Better have the monsters crush your leg in battle and see how you can carry on. That would be gritty.

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As much as I like having flawed character in cRPG, the best a SP cRPG can do with it is for taking these disadvantageous stuff to get some really positive stuff upon character creation that is done in other games but this is just a round about and more convoluted way to do the same thing as how we would take down our strength score so that we get 18 intelligence in those AD&D cRPG. The emotional context and depth of a flawed character would not really be affected by this system

 

There is possibility the dev of s SP cRPG plan for plot branches where the player would gain these disadvantage and take the plot from that. eg. build an entire plot branch that the PC would be blinded. So player would have this fustrating period where the screen basically show almost nothing until he complete some quest to aquire the coping skill and the rest of the world appear as a black and white silouette of shapes, and throught out the plot in the conversation, NPCs would react differently to the PC's condition...etc. Anything similar to this probably resource intensive and would only please those of us (likely minority) who enjoy this kind of thing. Yes, blind would probably be a bad idea for cRPG since that would take out one of the key advantage of cRPG, amazing HD graphics :p

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