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In the end, I don't really 'need' enemies to be experience pinatas.

 

But it is an experience. Not gaining experience for an experience, and not getting better per experience (and insight) seems odd but out of other parameters. I mean, I'm ambivalent and whatever Obsidian throws into the game gets into the game (and I'm 99% certain that I'll be satisfied), it's just adjustment and nervous curiosity to "something new" I guess.

 

Like you say too, lots of questions and little answers. Patience I guess :)

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Awesome post, Umberlin! There is, indeed, a boatload to be considered when dealing with mechanics that affect each other within the entire scope of a game. It even heavily affects the efficient use of development resources. If these enemies don't really serve a purpose, then should we have spent more time and effort on a different way of achieving our goal? Or, does what we've spent time and effort on here work directly against something else we've already established? If so, which one needs to be changed?

 

The fact is, you can't just have enemy A both give exp every time you kill it AND not-give EXP whenever you kill it and call it a day, feeling like you successfully made everyone happy. You literally have to go with one or the other and deal with the effects of that choice upon the rest of the game design, regardless of which players prefer what on that singular subject.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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But it is an experience. Not gaining experience for an experience, and not getting better per experience (and insight) seems odd but out of other parameters. I mean, I'm ambivalent and whatever Obsidian throws into the game gets into the game (and I'm 99% certain that I'll be satisfied), it's just adjustment and nervous curiosity to "something new" I guess.

 

Well, like I said, I do believe effort should be rewarded. It's less about whether I agree, or disagree, I think, in the end, I just need to wait for more information. With the little information we have on the game all I have are questions, and a lot of not being sure how I feel on some aspects until I see them properly layed in place.

 

So, yeah, patience. :p

 

Awesome post, Umberlin! There is, indeed, a boatload to be considered when dealing with mechanics that affect each other within the entire scope of a game. It even heavily affects the efficient use of development resources. If these enemies don't really serve a purpose, then should we have spent more time and effort on a different way of achieving our goal? Or, does what we've spent time and effort on here work directly against something else we've already established? If so, which one needs to be changed?

 

The fact is, you can't just have enemy A both give exp every time you kill it AND not-give EXP whenever you kill it and call it a day, feeling like you successfully made everyone happy. You literally have to go with one or the other and deal with the effects of that choice upon the rest of the game design, regardless of which players prefer what on that singular subject.

 

I'm trying to wrack my brain to think if there was ever a game that gave XP on first encounter, of an enemy type, and less or progressive less to eventually no or just outright no experience on further encounters with said type. It seems like there should be an example of that out there. I can't think of anything right now though.

 

I can think of games, Chrono Cross, for example, where only specific encounters, would further your experience, but that's not what I'm trying to think of. I can think of games where only missions give you experience, and never enemies. I can . . . basically I can think of a lot of reward types, across various games, but for some reason I'm failing to think of a game that used that one, or a varient, of said system. I want to remember, if it existed, so I could remember if it was in any way serviceable.

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"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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I doubt you'll only get experience once you turn in or complete an entire quest. My guess is that you'll get experience for clearing objectives for a quest. For minor quests, like kill a monster or something like that, exp will probably be awarded once the monster is killed. Some quests will most likely have many objectives, like they have had in other Obsidian games. Let's say you're supposed to reach a bandit camp that is located in a jungle that is hard to navigate. Let's say the onjectives looks like this:

 

Quest name: Osvir the Mad.

 

1. Find clues about Osvir the Mad's camp. You'll have to ask people around town about clues. You find someone, wich grants you some exp. The camp is in a jungle.

 

2. Find someone who can lead you to the jungle. You ask around and find someone who is willing to help. This grants you some exp.

 

3. Enter the jungle. You enter and gain experience.

 

4. Betrayal in the jungle. Your guide was not a guide, he lead you into a trap. Fight for your lives or talk your way out of the situation. You gain exp.

 

5. Survive the jungle and find the camp entrance. Regular encounters in the jungle give no exp. You finally find one of three entrances to the camp. You gain exp.

 

6. Meet with Osvir the Mad. Talk, sneak or fight your way to Osvir. Gain exp.

 

7. Kill Osvir or help him with his problems. Kill Osvir. Gain exp, but turn camp hostile or help Osvir, no exp yet.

 

8. Help Osvir. Help him, gain info and exp.

 

Quest complete. gain quest completion exp.

 

You actually give a good example of why this system makes no sense.

 

Steps 1 & 2 - Gain experience for asking people a question.

Step 3 - Gain experience for walking into a jungle.

Step 4 - Gain experience for a scripted plot sequence.

Step 5 - Gain experience for walking through a door.

 

But in none of those steps do you actually gain experience for doing something your character is trying to gain experience in. Step 5 being the most obvious example, you can wander the jungle and kill 1,000,000 critters and your fighting skills do not improve, but walk through a door and suddenly you get better.

 

Once again, what problem is it we're solving here? I still do not see any purpose to this implementation other than behavior control, or more specifically, because someone somewhere might choose to grind or exploit the system, which doesn't affect a single other person.

 

Because if we were actually trying to solve the problem of gaining xp for actions other than fighting, then the best answer is to give experience for actions other than fighting.

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I would add Numenera, the upcoming deep-time/post-apoc PnP game by Monte Cook.

 

 

Characters earn XP when they make new, interesting discoveries (not from killing things, although combat is often necessary to make discoveries and accomplish missions). They also earn XP when the GM “intrudes” on the action of the game to introduce new complications. Lastly, players have the ability to award XP to other players for great ideas, useful actions, or other reasons.

XP can be spent to increase character abilities, or to affect events in the game (such as rerolling dice), gain short-term benefits or advance in levels.

 

 

I never liked the xp-for-kills mechanic, and haven't been using it in my PnP games for years. I find xp-for-learning-something, xp-for-accomplishing-something, and xp-for-exercising-your-skills much more interesting.

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I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

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Thangs

Making every fight A Big Deal is... not really ideal. You fall into the "everything is special; therefore, nothing is special" trap that I totally stole from The Incredibles. A story should have a rising action and a denouement, not just all climax all the time, y'know?


jcod0.png

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PnP DSA only gave "experience" the first time you encountered and defeated a specific type of enemy in the adventure. Then again, in DSA it wasn't really "experience," they were adventuring points. I also remember fights taking 8 hours to fight in 3rd edition, so you weren't going to put much effort in raising your fighting skills anyway, a combat avoided was a combat won where the players and the GM were concerned.

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Vampire Masquerade: Bloodlines (paper edition of World of Darkness also didn't have exp for enemies).

 

True, but that's not the brand of system I'm attempting to think of, present in a game.

 

PnP DSA only gave "experience" the first time you encountered and defeated a specific type of enemy in the adventure. Then again, in DSA it wasn't really "experience," they were adventuring points. I also remember fights taking 8 hours to fight in 3rd edition, so you weren't going to put much effort in raising your fighting skills anyway, a combat avoided was a combat won where the players and the GM were concerned.

 

That sounds closer, but it seems like there was a cRPG, or something, at some point. You know, if I wasn't trying to think of it I wouldn't be having trouble remembering . . . it's one of those silly things.


"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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Once again, what problem is it we're solving here? I still do not see any purpose to this implementation other than behavior control, or more specifically, because someone somewhere might choose to grind or exploit the system, which doesn't affect a single other person.

 

I wonder if ther position of avoiding degenerushon in player behaviour is because they plan to have endless respawns, like in F:NV for example or endless random encounters like in Arcanum or Fallout. The sad thing is, as a player, it's hard to avoid this xp degenerushon when you want to explore a world with respawning enemies; you'll get attacked by the same bunch at the same location and well, you'll have to kill them again on most occasions.

I tried installing a mod that would get rid of respawns for F:NV, but it didn't work. In Old World Blues it was ridiculous how often they respawned and I had no choice but to kill them over and over again when going from place to place and exploring, getting lots of (unwanted) xp in the process... That's degenerate design.

 

Of course, the logical solution would be to get rid of respawns and endless random encounters so that (ACCIDENTAL) grinding isn't possible.

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I really like what you are advocating here, Osvir. It adds to the believability of the game system which in turn enhances the role playing immersion. However, I think the reason you want this system is the exact reason Obsidian would avoid it. (Based on what I've read of course)

As I understood it, the reason for going over to a system that rewarded the player based on completed objectives instead of combat was to allow for more choices. If two different experience pools are used, then the player is still being punished for avoiding combat as it is likely combat will be unavoidable at some point and their combat skills will be underdeveloped when they do. I think the whole choice here hinges on whether or not I will be asking myself the very metagaming and immersion breaking question, "Should I avoid this combat and complete my goal more efficiently or should I kill them all and soak up the EXP?"

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Maybe completing the goal without killing them is another method for soaking up the same amount of experience, but for another tree.

 

So really I totally forgot to add that in on my first post, but these are the experience tables I'd like to see. Not just splitting experience by 2, but by 3.

 

Character Level

Combat Level

Non-Combat Level

 

The Character Level is static, whilst Combat Level~Non-Combat Level would be a choice, "How do you play?", "Which route do you go?" and both would have rewards along the way. Deus Ex: HR (which I haven't played far at all) had a great starting choice (not the time based one) when you get to choose what kinds of weapons you want for the first mission. Of course you can switch it around later but you get the choice "Do you want a more combat oriented approach or do you want a non-lethal approach?" and you'll get rewards for whichever you choose.

Edited by Osvir

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I don't understand. Bloodlines was a game.

 

Yes. It is. It's not the type of system I'm trying to think of present in a game though.


"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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