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What is "Ironman" to you and how will PE handle it?

ironman rogue xenonauts discussion obsidian auto-saves save & quit delete save trial of iron

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#1
Osvir

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First of all, the Project Eternity wiki source for Modes.

In a discussion on Xenonauts forums (great game by the way, it's still Early Access but I recommend it to anyone who enjoys tactical turn-based games) I'm discussing an Ironman suggestion and what it means to me. No one agrees with me over there lol, partially because I'm probably intruding on their established community circle :p regardless... it made me curious to see what people stand on the subject of "Ironman" over here.

What is Ironman to you?

To me, in fact I didn't really know what Ironman really was up until 7 or 8 months ago. I had seen it but I had stayed away from it, or played it and not fully understanding it. I researched it and got excited about it and now I always play it whenever the option is available. Only 1 Save, Permanent Death, Save File gets deleted and so and so forth. In a sense, in terms of risks, it is the most realistic mode as there is no "turning back" when or if you make a mistake, in a way a la "in real life you can't ever save".

To me Ironman means this:
- No Auto-Saves (No Checkpoint Saves)
- Only Save & Quit (Single Save File)
- When you load the game, the Save File is Deleted
- Save Scumming = If you Copy the Saved File and put it somewhere safe
- Only 1 Life (If you make mistakes you tread on and do the best out of it), Rogue-like-ish
- A true incentive for tactical, careful, strategical and slower paced gameplay because of real risks
- Arcade-like-ish (Get to the final boss, die, start over from the beginning)

What ticks me off about Xenonauts Ironman is, it is not the Ironman I researched or that I have experienced in other games. Death of my units is not permanent because I have a save file from an earlier state. It Auto-Saves after every mission you do, and you can Load the Save file whenever (And when you Load it, it isn't deleted). So Xenonauts is using a sort of "Light Version" of Ironman in my opinion. It is not too much of a big deal really, as I can manually delete save files (alt+tab and save file folder) to get the real Ironman experience I am looking for.

The topic makes me curious though: Is this what "Ironman" is today? Auto-Saveman? How will Eternity play on Ironman? Will it Auto-Save every now and then like Xenonauts? Does Save Files get deleted when loading? When can I Save? Could I get more insight into this from anyone of the Devs? I'm also curious what the community thinks about Ironman here.

The suggestion is as follows:
If Obsidian feels uncomfortable at putting "No Auto-Saves", "Save & Quit" and "Delete Save File Loading" in the game, could it be possible to at least add it as an optional "switch" thing in a text config file?

Default values (if Obsidian feels uncomfortable about it, which the Xenonauts developers seem to be):
Auto-Saves = 1
Save & Quit = 0
Delete Save when Loading = 0

Ironman values (to me, which would have to be manually adjusted by opening the config file):
Auto-Saves = 0
Save & Quit = 1
Delete Save when Loading = 1


Edited by Osvir, 27 September 2013 - 05:00 PM.


#2
KaineParker

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What is "Ironman" to you


Iron_Man_bleeding_edge.jpg
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#3
KaineParker

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To me Ironman means this:
- No Auto-Saves (No Checkpoint Saves)
- Only Save & Quit (Single Save File)
- When you load the game, the Save File is Deleted
- Save Scumming = If you Copy the Saved File and put it somewhere safe
- Only 1 Life (If you make mistakes you tread on and do the best out of it), Rogue-like-ish
- A true incentive for tactical, careful, strategical and slower paced gameplay because of real risks
- Arcade-like-ish (Get to the final boss, die, start over from the beginning)


Snark aside, this sounds like it to me. Frankly, I don't really play these types of "hardcore" modes, and instead prefer things like Sawyer's Mod for FONV.
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#4
LadyCrimson

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My definition of "ironman" came from Diablo, rather than a SP game. :p
 
Thus something like this, with minor variations depending on mood or objective:

When playing Ironman style characters can not use any items they do not find themselves, repeat/replay areas, or buy items from NPCs. Ironman characters are generally hardcore (1 death), and are forbidden to return to town or interact with NPCs in any way other than as required to complete progress-stopping quests. There is naturally no twinking or muling or other such activities either.



#5
Iucounu

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Default values (if Obsidian feels uncomfortable about it, which the Xenonauts developers seem to be):
Auto-Saves = 1
Save & Quit = 0
Delete Save when Loading = 0

Ironman values (to me, which would have to be manually adjusted by opening the config file):
Auto-Saves = 0
Save & Quit = 1
Delete Save when Loading = 1

Definately think there should be both modes in the game. An "Ironman light" might prevent lazy gaming and savegame abusing, and you don't waste your time and attention on constantly saving the game yourself. The usual rule "save early, save often" just disturbs the flow of the game. 

 

And the real Ironman mode needs to be there as well, of course, because it's awesome! As long as you don't die..


Edited by Iucounu, 27 September 2013 - 05:49 PM.

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#6
Osvir

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Exactly! One does not have to exclude the other.


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#7
KaineParker

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Exactly! One does not have to exclude the other.


Hmm, this got me thinking...is it be better to include several variables(like one save, limited resting, etc,) and allow players to create their own "Ironman" modes than to create a certain set of conditions and label it "Ironman"? I believe it is.

#8
Tauron

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But why just not neverEver save a game (except autosave) and whn your character dies you just start a new game? There are also another variables to account for, first come to mind is dreaded CTD!



#9
Silent Winter

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- When you load the game, the Save File is Deleted

My only problem with this is external error - e.g. computer crashes / power cut / my son pushes the little blue button on the front of the box - fun times.

 

But why just not neverEver save a game (except autosave) and whn your character dies you just start a new game? There are also another variables to account for, first come to mind is dreaded CTD!

I believe, with a long game, it's permitted to sleep (and thus saving, powering down the PC).

When your character dies, you start a new game.  This is, I believe, the essece of Ironman - no reloads, just loading up again after a sleep and keep playing with any consequences until you die / finish the game.



#10
curryinahurry

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Exactly! One does not have to exclude the other.


Hmm, this got me thinking...is it be better to include several variables(like one save, limited resting, etc,) and allow players to create their own "Ironman" modes than to create a certain set of conditions and label it "Ironman"? I believe it is.

 

 

I think Ironman Mode should be defined by the developers as a standardized challenge mode. However I think it would be interesting if expert mode had enough toggles to create custom challenge modes that would serve the same function of what you're describing.   It could lead to some interesting challenges and mods from the community. 



#11
Orogun01

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Exactly! One does not have to exclude the other.


Hmm, this got me thinking...is it be better to include several variables(like one save, limited resting, etc,) and allow players to create their own "Ironman" modes than to create a certain set of conditions and label it "Ironman"? I believe it is.

 

It is convenient to allow players to create their own Ironman or self nerf in order to make up for the game's mechanics which in a True Ironman would prevent the player from progressing. The advantage is that when the developers create an Ironman mode they have taken into consideration all of the game's working and are better suited to the task. They're probably the ones that know if its possible to complete the game in Ironman mode. 



#12
Osvir

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Exactly! One does not have to exclude the other.


Hmm, this got me thinking...is it be better to include several variables(like one save, limited resting, etc,) and allow players to create their own "Ironman" modes than to create a certain set of conditions and label it "Ironman"? I believe it is.

 

It is convenient to allow players to create their own Ironman or self nerf in order to make up for the game's mechanics which in a True Ironman would prevent the player from progressing. The advantage is that when the developers create an Ironman mode they have taken into consideration all of the game's working and are better suited to the task. They're probably the ones that know if its possible to complete the game in Ironman mode. 

 

I want the Devs to shake their fingers in slight doubt and closed eyes as they slowly press the button that compiles the final code, leaving them with the lingering question in their mind "Is this Difficulty Level* even beatable?" :p

* Note: That's not Ironman thoughts but more or less "All The Hardest Possible Options Activated"


Edited by Osvir, 27 September 2013 - 09:17 PM.


#13
okkoko

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i like to be able to complete the game and then still have something to do with it with iron man difficulty you run in to only a fixed character set up will work or not at all .. might be im not so smart



#14
teknoman2

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there should be the option to choose between a hardcore ironman mode and a light ironman mode

the hardcore is as you described, the light is to keep a backup save at the begining of the last chapter you strated. so if you die you dont need to replay the entire game but restart from the begining of the chapter. 



#15
PrimeJunta

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I'm with your definition, Osvir. I also think an "ironman lite" mode is a bit of a waste of resources; I think the people who want to ironman for whatever reason want the full shebang, and the people who don't, won't, odd outliers notwithstanding.

 

Of course, they could just add a "Savegame behavior" configuration panel that lets you tailor savegame settings to your choosing.

 

The only real worry I have about ironman in a game as complex as P:E are serious scripting/programming errors. If the game boxes you into a dead end through no fault of your own, or corrupts your only savegame, or something like that, it's kind of a screaming-fit level bummer. So I would consider a recovery tool acceptable; i.e., that the game did retain savegame history but you could only access it with an external tool similar to a console cheat.



#16
Gorgon

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I just hope we forego the usual immortal joinable NPCs who have important dialouge down the line. Just as bad IMHO. Neverwinter nigths 2 handled all this pretty horribly. Matter of fact I don't think it was possible to lose any party members except in special cirumstances. 



#17
Gorgon

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My feeling is if there is nothing at stake then nothing matters. If you can only die by losing your whole party and then have to reload, that is pretty close to having nothing at stake. 


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#18
Sharp_one

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I'm waiting for more thrilling topics: "what is new game to you", "how launching game can change your life", "pros and cons of loading".



#19
PIP-Clownboy

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Do we know if Expert and Path of the Damned will be available off the bat or will they have to be unlocked? 

 

I'm totally with the OP though, too many games have been ruined by my obsessive savescumming growing up. Definitely want my first play-through as to be Ironman + toughest difficulty. Subsequent play-throughs will be modded with even more difficulty   :devil:



#20
Archmage Silver

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Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: ironman, rogue, xenonauts, discussion, obsidian, auto-saves, save & quit, delete save, trial of iron

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