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Sorry I'm tardy to the party I just learned about this entire thing a few hours ago!  I went through all of the updates and saw all of the videos...after spending a while crying tears of happiness I finally composed myself and decided to share my thoughts and express my thanks to all of the developers for continuing my favorite type of games!  Thank you very much.

 

----Pathing----

 

-Pathing is massively important.  In IE games I really disliked indoor / close corridors fighting because the characters would often waste time running in a wrong direction.  It was especially annoying if a pillar blocked line of sight for a ranged command 40 yards away and the character would move directly toward the target instead of taking the single step to the left/right to regain view.

 

When Starcraft 2 first came out the first thing that made me cry tears of joy was how fluid and perfect the pathing was.  You could select hundreds of units and watch them perfectly navigate around a series of obstacles with a single click.  It was so beautiful that many people were making videos just showing off how cool it was.  If I could spend more time monitoring spells and actions being preformed instead of making sure my recent commands are properly being executed the enjoyment would increase tenfold.  I know this is really obvious but I just felt like mentioning it!

 

----Spells----

 

-Spells that had a long casting time (almost a full turn) were sometimes difficult for me to manage when I have to pause countless times in between it's actual cast.  This happens often in large scale battles where certain death can occur at any fraction of a second.  Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition did a great job helping this problem by creating an icon on the player portrait symbolizing the current action being performed.  I would love to see something similar, if not identical to this!

 

----Replayability----

 

-I've seen a lot of games being accused of having little replayability because of it's linear play style, yet calling Baldur's Gate a masterpiece because of how opened ended it is.  I don't understand this logic because Baldur's Gate is completely scripted and after you've played it 100% you will know what to expect on each subsequent play through.  I love that game to death but it's never been the same as my first play through because I truly didn't know what to expect behind every inch of shroud my first time around.

 

I think the perfect solution for these things is to have a randomization system for events.  Any "Rogue-like" games have the right idea; you can create randomized sections of the game that doesn't change the storyline in anyway but offers the element of suprise for the player.

 

I'm not saying the game should be randomly generated like a Diablo map (1 and 2 ...lol@3) but certain "insignificant" areas would have random chances to create a type of event.

 

For example :  You approach the Friendly Arms Inn and instead of that mage who attacks you, one of the following happens :

 

1)Nothing

2)One or more randomly generated characters attacks you.

3)One or more randomly generated characters greet you, and offer you some advice.  This advice could be something like "Greetings traveler, careful if you travel east... I heard the howls of a large pack of wolves." Then somewhere in the east a pack of wolves would be created in the nearest spawn point used for such events.

4)A generic traveling merchant would offer you some standard wares.

5)A silly flavor text event happens that pulls you into the atmpsophere, or at the very least makes you grin before moving on.

 

This is a very basic example, but having multiple playthroughs where the feeling of exploration and genuine suprise can be kept is such a big deal for me and makes the game incredibly more fun!

 

----Exploration----

 

-Hidden items are always fun to find.  It's like an Easter egg hunt but instead of chocolate goodness you find a sum of gold, or a magic scroll, or a potion.  Nothing necessary, and nothing big but just a little way to reward players who take the time to look or have a good eye at catching cleverly placed secrets.  Holding the tab button to highlight everything would be an exception to this rule, and these secrets wouldn't be shown through that button (if it exists).

 

 

----Life in the City----

 

-Something that I loved about BG1 and BG2 was how long you could enjoy the game while being in a single place.  The major cities had a perfect balance of places to explore, places to experience combat, places to shop, and places to progress storylines.  You never had to leave the city walls because "I feel like fighting something now."

 

I would love it if there were even more reasons to stay in the city!  A few ideas I have are :

 

Auction house / Retail Investments : Instead of selling an item directly to a merchant you could place it on an auction or lend it to a shop keep in the hopes of earning extra gold with some patience.  You would return to the auction house or store you owned/invested in several game play hours or days later and either collect the gold you asked for (if the game decided it sold) or scan through the offers you got for the item.

 

For example : Say you placed a +1 Longsword on the market.  When you return about a day later you get the following options:

 

1)Don't sell; Keep +1 Longsword.

2)Accept offer : +1 Flail.

3)Accept offer : 1000 gold.

4)Accept offer : Scroll of Identify, 200 gold, and Potion of Minor Healing.

 

The options would always vary between existing and total profit as well.  Sometimes you would see great deals and other times you would see lousy deals and be forced to decide.

 

- An idea I had about cities is having minor quests that utilize a player's skill set.  Imagine if you ran across someone injured somewhere and at the cost of one of your heal spells/or potions you just saved someone's life.  Maybe someone has a disease or negative effect and asks you for a cure.  If you happen to have the right spell, you can decide to heal them or even charge them a specific amount of gold for your services.  I know a lot of people would see these things as pointless but interacting with the world in non-combat ways is extremely satisfying for me and really increases my enjoyment of the game.  I loved the idea of paying for spell casts when you went to temples, and I always wished I could go around selling spells.

 

----Weather Effects----

 

-Day and night cycles can have interesting effects on game play!  I would love to see spells and abilities that have both positive and negative effects based on current sun/moon cycles or rain/sun/snow conditions!

 

----Item Related Quests----

 

-Finding Pommel of the Equalizer in BG2 instantly made me happy.  It was a brilliant idea by the developers to put a partial item in the beginning of the game that did many things to the player.  It explained to them through game play mechanics alone that this game has specific item pieces in the world, there's definitely a place you can craft items at, and that the items in the game have stories fueling their special powers.  I loved this concept but I felt like there could have been more than there was in the game.  I would love to see a lot of items that are craftable through exploration and am just as equally interested in learning the stories behind them.  Creating actual quests revolving around piecing together legendary items would be a lot of fun!

 

----Stat Related Quests----

 

Something Dragon Age Origins tried to do but didn't deliver properly were quests that are directly dependant on your characters skills and/or stats.  I think they didn't do it right because it wasn't used enough.  There were very few examples of when it actually mattered, and it felt like a lazy attempt to instill a feeling of significance in the world but in the end further illuminated the linear path they took.

 

I think there should be a large variety of NPCs placed throughout every city and even some amongst the wilderness.  They should be randomized to discourage meta gaming, compliment replayability, and encourage exploration.

 

These NPCs would present to the player problems such as:

 

1) Someone needs help with identifying a potentially cursed scroll or item.  A spell of indentify completes the quest and earns the player a reward.

2) Someone needs help with picking the lock off of a box they found.  If you're party is capable of picking the lock then you are presented with three options : accept the reward of "x" amount of gold, share half of what's inside of the lockbox, or chose the evil route and just kill the person and take everything for yourself.

3) Somebody challenges you to play a card game.  If you agree to playing the game it automatically determines the winner based on your stats.  If you lose you forfeit an agreed upon amount of gold prior to the bet.  If you win you earn the agreed upon reward and are told in a quick text popup something like "Your quick dexterity catches the hussler trying to cheat you, he apologizes and forfeits."  Or, "Your sharp intellect overcomes your oponent, and you win the game."  These small stat checks are insignificant in comparison to the grand scheme of the game but offfer a very rewarding feeling when you are tested on the spot and walk away the victor.

 

----Difficulty and Danger----

 

-Something I really hate is level scaling.  I hate fighting something blindly with the comfort of knowing level scaling is on my side.  I think anyone who has played BG2 can say that their first encounter with Kangaxx the Lich was a very humbling and likely hilarious event.  It would sadden me if anyone ever actually got frustrated upon dying there.  That event alone made me recognize that I'm living in dangerous times where anything can happen and I'm not the Rambo of the world like in most video games.  This is further emphasized with how Irenicus brings the wizards to their knees in the beginning.  Trying to fight them yourself soon after learning that you can't cast spells in the city and deciding to do it anyway soon proves that you're no match against them!

 

Taking the time to avoid a recognizable danger is way more satisfying because it reminds me that I'm not playing a normal video game, I'm playing one of the best ever made!  It's also satisfying to be rewarded upon recognizing danger and having it pay off...and then later in the future returning to that location and showing off how strong I've become during my journey and to overcome and obstacle that was once a sure death to my former self.

 

----Awkward Game Mechanics----

 

-I love having a large variety of characters/companions that join my party but I never want to have my intentions of playing with a certain group get in the way of their perception of me.  I would take everyone if I could but you can only have 5 other party members with you.  I get that, I like that, I think a total of 6 is a perfect number and I hope it stays that way because personally I think 7 or more would get a little too crazy.

 

HOWEVER...  I don't want a dialogue option saying "Sorry but you can't join us; we're full."  What the hell does that even mean?  Is this game that prides itself on immersion actually have a dialogue option that's directly referencing a game play mechanic?  That bothered me really bad.  What should have happened is you should either let them join or say something along the lines of "I think it would be better if you met with me at 'insert hub like copper coronet'."  At least that way the player wouldn't be discouraged about potentially pissing off the NPC.  And yes I know that as far as stats/numbers go you aren't actually experiencing any real disadvantage from the NPC you're turning down but I have watched many others including myself experience a pang of guilt because of the game forcing you to chose that dialogue option.

 

A great example is when you are in BG1 and you have 1 empty slot and a group like Jaheria and Khalid want to join you.  Or Minsc and eventually Dynaheir.  You are in middle of the wilderness and you say to their face "We don't have room for you.".  That is a large error in game design, I think, and should be at the very least rephrased.

 

Another example of awkwardness is when you first enter Spellhold in the game BG2.  You're decently far into the game at that point and almost assuredly have a full party by then.  You suddenly meet Imoen and are forced to decide somebodies fate on the spot.  Not only is that just an awkward way of putting the player in a tough position entirely based on game mechanics, but you also are very likely to have to reload since there's a strong possibility that whoever you decided to boot out of the party had some crucial items in their inventory.  BG2 forces you to go through the clunky process of redoing the entire portion of that game simply because a game mechanic got in the way of your game's momentum.

 

Sorry about the length of this rant but it's very important to me and I wanted to be sure to get my point across.
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Kinda late to the party, as you said, but welcome nonetheless...also, I'm sure all your points have been brought up millionsseveral times already, so find comfort in the knowledge that the developers are aware of these issues (it has been over a decade and technology has advanced after all).

 

also, since you were wicked/decadent/lax in your awareness of project eternity's Kickstarter you can at least help promote the resurgence of monocled cRPG's by taking a gander at the Torment Kickstarter http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/inxile/torment-tides-of-numenera which is currently underway and doing fabulously.

 

happy gaming.

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Lots of points there. I'll pick only one for now. Randomization and replayability.

 

I'm not a huge fan of randomization except for games actually based on it, like roguelikes or Dwarf Fortress for example. It tends to fit poorly with hand-crafted content and have a generic, soulless, bland feeling to it. If it's as light as you suggest, it won't change your experience all that much; if it was BG you'd have the same playthrough, more or less, except sometimes you'd get that +1 short sword a hair earlier from a random loot drop, at other times you'd not be able to find a Stinking Cloud scroll anywhere. Not enough to interest me at least in a second play-through.

 

In my opinion a much better way of enhancing replayability is through multiple solutions to problems, and through branching story- and questlines. If you can get to an objective by fighting, talking, or sneaking, your experience will be very different each time; you'll need a different type of character or party, and will be doing different things. If choosing to help Gravlax the Lich opens up a series of quests that end up with you setting fire to the High Chapterhouse of the Paladins of the Living Salmon, whereas helping the Paladins leads to a series of quests where you hunt for Gravlax's phylactery, again you'd have a completely different experience. If each of these quests has multiple solutions and varying outcomes, again, massive replayability. Even if each questline has exactly two branches, you can get massive replayability by having them affect each other through different outcomes or rewards so there's more variety than the simple "good path" and "evil path" in the above example.

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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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Did you have to call the Lich `Gravlax`, Prime Junta? Because now I want fish.


`This is just the beginning, Citizens! Today we have boiled a pot who's steam shall be seen across the entire galaxy. The Tea Must Flow, and it shall! The banner of the British Space Empire will be unfurled across a thousand worlds, carried forth by the citizens of Urn, and before them the Tea shall flow like a steaming brown river of shi-*cough*- shimmering moral fibre!` - God Emperor of Didcot by Toby Frost.

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We're not going to promote pixel-hunting, but we are planning a lot of optional areas that are off of the crit path as well as multiple ways into and through areas.  We will place suitably rewarding items in those locations commensurate to the difficulty required to find them.

 

Optional content, like the encounter with Kangaxx, will not scale by level at all in Project: Eternity.

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i am absolutely in favor of the pathing part... it was really annoying in IE games and often even in NWN2

and the spell part is good too... i often had trouble in IE games due to lack of feedback on area effect spells that caused me massive friendly fire damage. and not often but it happened that i canceled a spell, by giving another command, thinking the casting was done. so maybe allowing to queue commands could spare the spacebar and allow a bit more fluidity in combat, instead of constant pause-unpause.

now replayability is gonna be there due to the amount of classes, companions and so on. if to that you add something like

quest A - solution A - result B - quest B 

quest A - solution B - result C - quest C

quest A - solution C - result D - no new quest

it will skyrocket

of course it would be best to avoid something like BG where you had to be a good guy to accept quests, with no bad guy alternatives, where a bad guy would have to get his progress through the slaughter of guards if he wanted to stay in character

Edited by teknoman2
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The words freedom and liberty, are diminishing the true meaning of the abstract concept they try to explain. The true nature of freedom is such, that the human mind is unable to comprehend it, so we make a cage and name it freedom in order to give a tangible meaning to what we dont understand, just as our ancestors made gods like Thor or Zeus to explain thunder.

 

-Teknoman2-

What? You thought it was a quote from some well known wise guy from the past?

 

Stupidity leads to willful ignorance - willful ignorance leads to hope - hope leads to sex - and that is how a new generation of fools is born!


We are hardcore role players... When we go to bed with a girl, we roll a D20 to see if we hit the target and a D6 to see how much penetration damage we did.

 

Modern democracy is: the sheep voting for which dog will be the shepherd's right hand.

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We're not going to promote pixel-hunting, but we are planning a lot of optional areas that are off of the crit path as well as multiple ways into and through areas.  We will place suitably rewarding items in those locations commensurate to the difficulty required to find them.

 

Optional content, like the encounter with Kangaxx, will not scale by level at all in Project: Eternity.

 

And all other areas, that are on the crit path, will scale by level?

 

Well..

 

Could I suggest a gameplay mode that eliminates all level scaling?

My line of reasoning is as follows.

 

-Trial of iron mode (confirmed):

*will indubitably be used by a small portion of players (die once - game over)

*can be self-regulated by actually... starting a new game when your party gets wiped out

 

-No level scaling mode (not confirmed):

*would be appreciated by a much larger portion of players, I'd wager

*cannot be self-regulated

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We're not going to promote pixel-hunting, but we are planning a lot of optional areas that are off of the crit path as well as multiple ways into and through areas.  We will place suitably rewarding items in those locations commensurate to the difficulty required to find them.

 

Optional content, like the encounter with Kangaxx, will not scale by level at all in Project: Eternity.

 

And all other areas, that are on the crit path, will scale by level?

 

Well..

 

Could I suggest a gameplay mode that eliminates all level scaling?

My line of reasoning is as follows.

 

-Trial of iron mode (confirmed):

*will indubitably be used by a small portion of players (die once - game over)

*can be self-regulated by actually... starting a new game when your party gets wiped out

 

-No level scaling mode (not confirmed):

*would be appreciated by a much larger portion of players, I'd wager

*cannot be self-regulated

 

 

Level scaling, as abhorrent as it is when applied universally, can be necessary at times, especially in non-linear games. Without some amount of level-scaling, a non-linear game becomes a practically linear game by way of making some ostensibly doable areas too difficult for players of a given level to complete. Edited by AGX-17
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there are many types of level scaling. there is the abomination they made in oblivion,where the type of enemies you would encounter changed with levels, and there is the subtle aproach of gothic 3, where at lv1 a wolf was a serious threat, but at lv30 it was as easy to kill as a bug, however a pack of wolves could still kill you at lv50 if you took them lightly and a dragon was as hard to kill in lv1 as in lv50, with the only difference that in lv50 you had weapons that could hurt him.

there are many games that have a subtle level scaling system that you can barely notice if they dont admit to having it

Edited by teknoman2
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The words freedom and liberty, are diminishing the true meaning of the abstract concept they try to explain. The true nature of freedom is such, that the human mind is unable to comprehend it, so we make a cage and name it freedom in order to give a tangible meaning to what we dont understand, just as our ancestors made gods like Thor or Zeus to explain thunder.

 

-Teknoman2-

What? You thought it was a quote from some well known wise guy from the past?

 

Stupidity leads to willful ignorance - willful ignorance leads to hope - hope leads to sex - and that is how a new generation of fools is born!


We are hardcore role players... When we go to bed with a girl, we roll a D20 to see if we hit the target and a D6 to see how much penetration damage we did.

 

Modern democracy is: the sheep voting for which dog will be the shepherd's right hand.

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We're not going to promote pixel-hunting, but we are planning a lot of optional areas that are off of the crit path as well as multiple ways into and through areas.  We will place suitably rewarding items in those locations commensurate to the difficulty required to find them.

 

Optional content, like the encounter with Kangaxx, will not scale by level at all in Project: Eternity.

 

And all other areas, that are on the crit path, will scale by level?

 

Well..

 

Could I suggest a gameplay mode that eliminates all level scaling?

My line of reasoning is as follows.

 

-Trial of iron mode (confirmed):

*will indubitably be used by a small portion of players (die once - game over)

*can be self-regulated by actually... starting a new game when your party gets wiped out

 

-No level scaling mode (not confirmed):

*would be appreciated by a much larger portion of players, I'd wager

*cannot be self-regulated

 

Level scaling, as abhorrent as it is when applied universally, can be necessary at times, especially in non-linear games. Without some amount of level-scaling, a non-linear game becomes a practically linear game by way of making some ostensibly doable areas too difficult for players of a given level to complete.

It isn't necessary, at all.

And that's for the player to gauge if he wants to give up on some non-linearity in favour of getting rid of level scaling, hence mode.

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We're not going to promote pixel-hunting, but we are planning a lot of optional areas that are off of the crit path as well as multiple ways into and through areas.  We will place suitably rewarding items in those locations commensurate to the difficulty required to find them.

 

Optional content, like the encounter with Kangaxx, will not scale by level at all in Project: Eternity.

 

And all other areas, that are on the crit path, will scale by level?

 

 

 

J. E. Sawyer on a previous thread about Level-Scaling said:

 

 

 

In a good game, in my opinion, minions should become easier to kill as you level up, while boss mobs and other special encounters should become more difficult. I think that it takes a combination of good level design and encounter scaling to achieving this to a workable degree in most games. Perhaps in conjunction with an encounter-changing difficulty slider.

I think we've said this before, but the only things we're likely to scale with player level are crit-path special encounters and even then, only within a range of levels. E.g. take a boss like Sherincal in IWD2. Maybe you'll encounter her at 5th level, but it's possible you could encounter her at 8th level. If 5th-8th is the most common range, we'd scale around that, but if you encounter her sub-5th level, you'll have to deal with the difference. If you encounter her at 9th or 10th by some x-treme XP mining, it will be a little easier for you.

 

The reason to scale the crit path special encounters is to allow for the fact that not everyone wants to do a lot of side content. Some people want to (largely) stick to the crit path with minimal side quests.

 

When it comes to the optional/side content, there won't be any scaling at all. Rats in the cellar will still be rats and may explode from your mere presence and the dragon Chrysophylax will probably burn you to ashes if you mosey up to his lair at 3rd level.

 

 

 

See the full thread at - http://forums.obsidian.net/topic/63017-level-scaling-and-its-misuse/

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-No level scaling mode (not confirmed):

*would be appreciated by a much larger portion of players, I'd wager

*cannot be self-regulated

Why would it need to be self-regulated? You cannot self-regulate a static increase in power for enemies.

 

 

No-level-scaling variant:

 

Enemy A is Level 12, and Enemy B is Level 15, always. Whether you can only achieve level 13 or you can achieve Level 99 by the time you gain access to Enemy B is irrelevant. The level of that enemy is never, ever going to change. So, the game can present ONLY Enemy A to the player at level 11ish or so, OR it can present both Enemies A and B to the player, even when the player isn't near Level 15. The player can ATTEMPT to take on Enemy B first, and maybe it's even possible. But, if it's not challenging enough, then you've got a problem with your challenge level in your game. In other words, what does it really matter which order you can or cannot do things? Your skill/challenge obstacles are a joke. And if they AREN'T a joke, then you've got an actual ceiling at which it is literally impossible to overcome a high-enough-level obstacle (you couldn't present a Level 11 player with a level 28 enemy, for example, again, without simply inflating all the level values of subsequent enemies throughout the game -- level 16 players could take on level 35 enemies, and so on...). So, you're forced, by reality, to incorporate linearity with that. The only way to set static levels AND incorporate choice is to restrict all the levels to a feasible cap (which is essentially downward level-"scaling").

 

Level-scaling variant:

 

Enemies A and B are both only a certain level, but it's dependent upon the progress the character has made thus far, out of the pool of available progress to be had before taking on either enemy. This is already regulated by that "what level you're allowed to reach" bit. Take a game with infinite experience opportunities, and plug in static levels, then plug in level-scaling. Either way, the player can always just grind up to whatever level he wants, so the level of encountered challenges is almost pointlessly regulated by the actual level determination for foes, either way. If it has finite experience opportunities, then then you can only progress so far in level before taking on a given threat, no matter what (which is a much better idea than infinite experience opportunities, honestly). So, with level-scaling, you can, for instance, have the first Enemy encountered be level 12 (when the player is level 11ish, for example), and the second Enemy encountered be level 15 (when the player has completed the first encounter, and you know exactly how much experience/progress-opportunity was available before the second encounter). The ONLY difference is that the order no longer matters, between those two encounters, and those two encounters only.

 

Every legitimate argument so far made against level-scaling has been directly regarding the extent of the scaling, and not about the act of scaling, itself.

 

If you drink scalding hot coffee, and it burns you, do you deduce that drinking is bad, or that coffee is bad, or even that heating coffee is bad? No. The problem has absolutely nothing to do with the specifics of the nature of the beverage, or the method of ingestion, or the act of altering its temperature, and everything to do with the extent to which the temperature was altered.

 

So, unless you're suggesting that any time a game developer of an RPG would ever want to offer a pool of multiple progression choices to the player, he wants there to always be an arbitrarily easy order to the choice pool and an arbitrarily difficult order to the choice pool, I don't comprehend at all how you can say that level-scaling has no use. I wouldn't even call it level-scaling, since Enemies A and B (in the example above) are only ever one level. You either fight Enemy A at level 12, or you fight him at level 15 (depending on the order). Either way, he's always a moderated, appropriate level of challenge when you face him, and is never arbitrarily easier.

 

Do you claim that that very effect is self-regulatable? In a game with static levels, can I face enemy B (level 15), level up from that, THEN face Enemy A (level 12) and simply will him to be as challenging as he would have been had I not progressed by already facing Enemy B? I don't think so. A static level setting contradicts the very choice offered to the player, in this particular situation. The only way to render the choice unnecessary is to make the game purely linear. If you cannot face Enemy B until you've faced Enemy A because it's literally impossible, then all's well. But, there are times when it would be silly to restrict things so. "You cannot go out the west gate and deal with these bandits until you go out the east gate, first, and explore this cave, simply so that the pre-determined challenge levels for these things will be appropriate.

 

I mean, how do you think static levels are determined in the first place? "Oh, this person's gonna fight this stuff in Chapter 1? Then we can't make it level 90... it'll need to be appropriate-level content."

 

Yet, suddenly, someone wants to have a wider array of challenges presented simultaneously, and it's preposterous to account for the completely unintentional side-effect of challenge-skew because of the potential order in which the array is tackled?

 

That does not compute. o_o


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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-No level scaling mode (not confirmed):

*would be appreciated by a much larger portion of players, I'd wager

*cannot be self-regulated

Why would it need to be self-regulated? You cannot self-regulate a static increase in power for enemies.

 

As always, you missed the entire point by a landslide and went on with an amusingly superfluous amount of words.

 

The context and point being that you can mimic a no-reload mode yourself, but you cannot mimic a no-level-scaling mode without tinkering with files and probably seeing spoilers in the process (i.e. areas, enemies). Not to mention you'd have to balance encounters you haven't designed, assigning them a static level.

It doesn't need to be self-regulated.

And the third point you missed, obviously, is that many people would want to play the game without any level scaling.

 

 

Amentep, thanks for trying to help, but I've read that already. Maybe they've changed their minds in the meantime. This time he didn't mention any "crit-path special encounters", but instead he mentioned optional areas and encounters. We have no idea about the percentage of areas and encounters that will be optional, so it's rather vague.

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As always, you missed the entire point by a landslide and went on with an amusingly superfluous amount of words.

TL;DR version? A bunch of words you're probably not going to read.

 

---------------------------------------------------

 

I rather believe I brought up a point that renders your points moot. As always, you sidestep it. *sigh*

 

I really don't go out of my way to antagonize you. I simply try to understand your concerns in the absence of a vacuum.

 

The context and point being that you can mimic a no-reload mode yourself, but you cannot mimic a no-level-scaling mode without tinkering with files and probably seeing spoilers in the process (i.e. areas, enemies). Not to mention you'd have to balance encounters you haven't designed, assigning them a static level.

You can also mimic blindness by turning off your monitor or closing your eyes, and yet the game will provide the representation, nonetheless. I realize iron-man mode isn't as necessary as the representation of blindness. However, whether or not you can mimic something doesn't really determine how much it needs to be in the game, it would seem. See? I got the point, and supplemented it with another.

 

Also, the fact remains that you cannot mimic level-scaling in a game that is devoid of it, either (without essentially modding files and such, as you mentioned you would need in the reciprocal situation). So, the exact same argument could be made in either scenario. "You have an iron-man mode for something that can be easily mimicked, yet there is no level-scaling mode!"

 

That being said, there remains the obvious "you're still not denying there should be a choice, Lephys." Which is true. This brings me back to some Example Time:

 

Take the 2-enemies example I used before, for simplicity's sake. An option for "removing" or "not-using" level scaling implies that static levels would be the regular, unmodified version of the level/challenge system, and that the introduction of level-scaling simply enacts a modification that "many people would want to play the game without" (much like Hard difficulty versus Normal difficulty). Well, let's take a look at that. Enemy A is level 12, and Enemy B is level 15. So, if I'm part of the group who WANTS level scaling, because we can take on the 2 enemies in either order we choose (and I want the second to not be overly simple in challenge, compared to my party), then I get to fight Enemy B at level 12, followed by Enemy A at level 15 (assuming I've either enacted an option for level-scaling, OR the game just doesn't have any option BUT level-scaling).

 

Let's see what happens to the people who don't want any level-scaling. Oh, what's this? They still fight 2 enemies in any order they wish, and are presented with a challenge relative to their party's capabilities (which were lesser BEFORE fighting the first enemy, whichever they chose, than after). Okay, let's take out level-scaling. Now, they're still presented with 2 enemies, one of which is level 12, and one of which is level 15, always. They still have the option of fighting them in either order, but one order is going to involve a first ridiculously difficult foe, followed by a second ridiculously easy foe, whereas the other order is going to result in the exact same thing that would occur in the level-scaling-enabled scenario.

 

So, for those people who arbitrarily, at this particular point in the game, wish to basically play on Hard difficulty but don't wish to have Hard difficulty permanently enabled across the board, they get something no one else can get. THEN, they get to play on Easy difficulty when they reach the second enemy, yet again only for a brief period.

 

Now, I ask this... if only certain things are going to be level-scaled (in moderation at that), so that all the optional stuff is already static level content that can be attempted either when it's tougher or when it's easier, AND there are difficulty modes available to the player on top of that... what objective use is there for ALL scenarios to be static in challenge rating/level? Should the game NEVER ensure that something is a challenge for you, no matter what the order of your progress? And, if so, why is the availability of progression options even limited? Why not just allow all things to be tackled whenever, and just let the difficulty-from-level sort everything out?

 

Level-scaling can and does serve an objective purpose, when used properly, and I fail to comprehend why you so adamantly deny this.

 

Let me ask this much... if everything you could encounter and fight in the entire game were level 5, would that not be a problem? You would eventually say "Dammit... I'm like level 9 now. Why is everything still level 5? The devs really should've made sure there was a challenge for me." So, what's the effective difference between fighting something that's level 9 because it happened to be determined to put level 9 things into your path, from the get go, at the point when you should be approximately level 9, and deciding that the enemies around you are going to be level 9 now instead of level 5 because you're level 9?

 

The goal of both is exactly the same. "Present a challenge with our mathematically-progressive level system." If there's such thing as an appropriate challenge level for a particular portion of the game, then why does it matter how that's achieved, as long as it's properly achieved?

 

Also, why would the player need to have a mode that has him give up some non-linearity while eliminating level-scaling, when linearity can be easily mimicked/self-regulated? Purely linear game + level-scaling = indiscernible from a non-level-scaling, purely linear game, FWIW. The only purpose level-scaling ever serves is the handling of the appropriate gradation of challenge when non-linearity through content is presented. And just because there are various orders to the progression choices does not mean that the only reasons for choosing a given order is solely to influence the difficulty of a sequence of challenges. Therefore, with only static levels, you're presenting an uninentional side-effect to the people who choose the higher-level content first and the lower-level content second for reasons unrelated to the level/difficulty of the content.

 

Basically, you want a flag to be red, and it is. But someone told you HOW they made the flag red, and now you're unhappy with it. You don't care if an enemy is level 12, so long as it was determined that he'd be level 12 at the beginning of the game, rather than when you got to him. That's what I fail to understand most about your molten hatred of level-scaling.

It doesn't need to be self-regulated.

The problem stems from the fact that it cannot be self-regulated, yet it in no way "needs" to be self-regulated? I don't understand.

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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baldur's gate had no level scaling, however it had dice scaling for bosses and important enemies. thanks to the trilogy mod, i played the first bg with the ranger subclass "archer" from the second. at lv6 my thac0 was so high that i could hit anynthing short of a warrior with full plate with a simple roll of 2. still, when i came up against a wizard boss with ac0 at most, the dice rolled me 3-4 times 1 (critical miss) between every hit, because if i were to get regular rolls he would be dead within 2 rounds and would not be chalenging (just as sarevok could hit with a 4+ 4=8 vs ac-9, just because he was the boss and he had to be hard)

so a type of scaling is always there. that said, i prefer to face actualy stronger enemies than have the game bend the rules so that i cant win easily when im too strong for the enemy im facing


The words freedom and liberty, are diminishing the true meaning of the abstract concept they try to explain. The true nature of freedom is such, that the human mind is unable to comprehend it, so we make a cage and name it freedom in order to give a tangible meaning to what we dont understand, just as our ancestors made gods like Thor or Zeus to explain thunder.

 

-Teknoman2-

What? You thought it was a quote from some well known wise guy from the past?

 

Stupidity leads to willful ignorance - willful ignorance leads to hope - hope leads to sex - and that is how a new generation of fools is born!


We are hardcore role players... When we go to bed with a girl, we roll a D20 to see if we hit the target and a D6 to see how much penetration damage we did.

 

Modern democracy is: the sheep voting for which dog will be the shepherd's right hand.

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You can also mimic blindness by turning off your monitor or closing your eyes, and yet the game will provide the representation, nonetheless.

Well, I guess you don't have to mimic it. I find it hard to believe that someone would write a gigantic essay of nothing, open his eyes and not find his participation ridiculous enough to delete it instantly. So I suppose it is permanent.

The problem stems from the fact that it cannot be self-regulated, yet it in no way "needs" to be self-regulated? I don't understand.

You've added the "no way" part yourself.

And indeed, those who prefer playing the game with the crit-path artificially molding with the level of their character don't need to self-regulate it. Those who find level scaling an abomination however, would need to do quite a bit more work than merely using willpower to get rid of it - in the absence of such mode.

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right... so when i was fighting the wizard in the cloakwood mines, and i was getting rolls like (. is round end) 

1

1

.

1

1

.

3 hit

1

.

1

1

.

1

1

.

1

18 hit

.

1

1

.

1

11 hit

.

1

1

.

1

1

.

5 hit

on my attacks was simply bad luck (the game has the option to show dice rolls in combat)


The words freedom and liberty, are diminishing the true meaning of the abstract concept they try to explain. The true nature of freedom is such, that the human mind is unable to comprehend it, so we make a cage and name it freedom in order to give a tangible meaning to what we dont understand, just as our ancestors made gods like Thor or Zeus to explain thunder.

 

-Teknoman2-

What? You thought it was a quote from some well known wise guy from the past?

 

Stupidity leads to willful ignorance - willful ignorance leads to hope - hope leads to sex - and that is how a new generation of fools is born!


We are hardcore role players... When we go to bed with a girl, we roll a D20 to see if we hit the target and a D6 to see how much penetration damage we did.

 

Modern democracy is: the sheep voting for which dog will be the shepherd's right hand.

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right... so when i was fighting the wizard in the cloakwood mines, and i was getting rolls like (. is round end) 

1

1

.

1

1

.

3 hit

1

.

1

1

.

1

1

.

1

18 hit

.

1

1

.

1

11 hit

.

1

1

.

1

1

.

5 hit

on my attacks was simply bad luck (the game has the option to show dice rolls in combat)

You have the option to possess a creature, in game, with a console code and see its stats exactly.

Also, there's a program that extracts/lists all creatures that appear in BG/BG2, coupled with all their stats. 

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Amentep, thanks for trying to help, but I've read that already. Maybe they've changed their minds in the meantime. This time he didn't mention any "crit-path special encounters", but instead he mentioned optional areas and encounters. We have no idea about the percentage of areas and encounters that will be optional, so it's rather vague.

 

I'd imagine its vague simply because of the stage of production with regard to how many optional and critical areas/encounters there are - I could be wrong.

 

I don't mind the kind of level scaling that he mentions (only on critical path, only within certain narrow constraints). In someways I can see it as a "damned if they do, damned if they don't" proposition.  No level scaling can lead to people encountering things to high level for them and complaining or doing so many side quests the critical path is a cake walk and then complaining the game had no challenge but level scaling will have people complain as well because it exists. Of course I suppose you could argue trying to do something just to avoid complainers might not be worth it or something.

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right... so when i was fighting the wizard in the cloakwood mines, and i was getting rolls like (. is round end) 

1

1

.

1

1

.

3 hit

1

.

1

1

.

1

1

.

1

18 hit

.

1

1

.

1

11 hit

.

1

1

.

1

1

.

5 hit

on my attacks was simply bad luck (the game has the option to show dice rolls in combat)

You have the option to possess a creature, in game, with a console code and see its stats exactly.

Also, there's a program that extracts/lists all creatures that appear in BG/BG2, coupled with all their stats. 

what do i need to see his stats for? it's not his stats that make the dice roll all these 1. 

his stats may make me need a higher roll (9+ instead of 5+), reduce the damage i do to him and so on, but they cant affect the dice roll


The words freedom and liberty, are diminishing the true meaning of the abstract concept they try to explain. The true nature of freedom is such, that the human mind is unable to comprehend it, so we make a cage and name it freedom in order to give a tangible meaning to what we dont understand, just as our ancestors made gods like Thor or Zeus to explain thunder.

 

-Teknoman2-

What? You thought it was a quote from some well known wise guy from the past?

 

Stupidity leads to willful ignorance - willful ignorance leads to hope - hope leads to sex - and that is how a new generation of fools is born!


We are hardcore role players... When we go to bed with a girl, we roll a D20 to see if we hit the target and a D6 to see how much penetration damage we did.

 

Modern democracy is: the sheep voting for which dog will be the shepherd's right hand.

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Well, I guess you don't have to mimic it. I find it hard to believe that someone would write a gigantic essay of nothing, open his eyes and not find his participation ridiculous enough to delete it instantly. So I suppose it is permanent.

I still find it hard to believe that someone would either read such an essay OR ignore the whole thing and call it "nothing," then still respond to tell the other person how pointless their words were.

 

Humans will be humans, I suppose. :)

You've added the "no way" part yourself.

And indeed, those who prefer playing the game with the crit-path artificially molding with the level of their character don't need to self-regulate it. Those who find level scaling an abomination however, would need to do quite a bit more work than merely using willpower to get rid of it - in the absence of such mode.

Oh, crap, you're right. They should stick with naturally-occurring RPG levels and attributes. Silly artificial stuff... u_u

 

Those who "find" level-scaling an abomination are different from those who "find" anything to be anything, exactly how? I find the lack of 50-caliber sniper rifles in fantasy RPGs to be an abomination. I guess that matters now, since I'm a person, and I made a conclusion regarding something. I've gotta work realllly hard to overcome the fact that no games accommodate me in that respect. u_u

 

Because there's no such thing as reason, apparently. Only opinion, and they're all equal.

 

I suppose you're never going to open up that mind of yours beyond what you've already "found" and actually discuss anything. So we're just cluttering up the topic at this point.

 

/resign


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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"Zzzzzzzzzz" *annihilates the fly with a fly swatter* There.

No level scaling can lead to people encountering things

 

 

Trial of Iron can lead to people dying and being horribly frustrated because they have to start the game from 0... oh wait, they selected the mode for it themselves.

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"Zzzzzzzzzz" *annihilates the fly with a fly swatter* There.

 

Apparently I have been annihilated. And was a fly. Man... that sure showed me.

 

Trial of Iron can lead to people dying and being horribly frustrated because they have to start the game from 0... oh wait, they selected the mode for it themselves.

 

Sci-fi games can lead to people becoming frustrated with the game because they hate sci-f... oh wait, they voluntarily bought that particular game themselves.

 

Respond unto others as you would have them respond unto you. 8P

Edited by Lephys

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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Frankly, as long as it works properly, I don't care if there's level scaling or not.

 

By "works properly," I mean that it must be invisible to anyone who doesn't go digging around in the code. Oblivion was the nadir of level scaling not because the scaling was in it, but because its effects were ridiculously obvious, detrimental to reasonable play, and utterly nonsensical within the established lore.

 

If you tell me glass swords are rare, and then every chump with a leather helmet and a death wish suddenly has one, the whole world is suddenly revealed as an absurd lie. Similarly, if skeletons that used to have a certain amount of bone density have apparently gone to the skeleton gym and toughened up said bones since the last time I saw them, I'm going to call bulls**t on that.

 

I will say that while I have no interest in a dedicated mode that turns off level scaling, I wouldn't be averse to something that locks the levels of scaled monsters to the level they were at when you encountered them on your first playthrough. If I fight Coccyx the Murder Dragon at Level 7 on my first playthrough, and Level 9 on my second, I don't necessarily want him to be just as tough, simply because the first playthrough has already established him as being a certain level. Of course, that could be solved much more easily by simply not showing his level; it's metagaming knowledge, anyway.

 

TL;DR: Level scaling is fine as long as it's completely invisible.

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