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No Defense scores or Skill check targets in Expert Mode please

poll expert mode defense skills

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Poll: Target Values/Defenses in Expert Mode (111 member(s) have cast votes)

Do you want to see target values in the UI and combat log in Expert Mode

  1. Yes (37 votes [33.33%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 33.33%

  2. No (34 votes [30.63%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 30.63%

  3. Don't care (33 votes [29.73%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 29.73%

  4. I do not plan to play Expert Mode (7 votes [6.31%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 6.31%

Would you be in favor of making it a separate option in the game settings?

  1. Yes - I think I should be able to choose (78 votes [70.27%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 70.27%

  2. No - They should always be shown for everyone (5 votes [4.50%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 4.50%

  3. No - They should never be shown (5 votes [4.50%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 4.50%

  4. Don't care (20 votes [18.02%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 18.02%

  5. I do not plan to play Expert Mode (3 votes [2.70%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 2.70%

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#41
TrashMan

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I honestly prefer for a game to give you a general indication of some things the PC shouldn't have accurate knowledge off

 

 

Like enemy health.

The "Near Deth", "Heavily Injured", "Injured", "Barely Wounded" etc do a far better job of portaying combat than "12/40"

 

The game will give you that feedback on default. Expert mode will turn this stuff off, which is something I think a lot of the 'yes' voters fail to understand. Expert mode turns ALL help off (and locks it).

 

 

I don't see why.

There is a difference bitween "too much feedback" or "too detailed feedback" and "no feedback".

 

The player should have access to knowledge the PC should have. And hte PC should be able to roughly gauge the shape the enemy is in.

 

Some king of "expert" mode that purposfully handicaps you beyond reason for challange is silly IMHO.
 


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#42
agris

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I fully support this idea Sensuki, and despite the vocal (minority) in this thread, do think it adds a less tangible element of difficulty and suspension of disbelief. The original Fallout 1/2 did this in a manner, with 'invisible' skill checks during dialogue and obfuscated skill checks (mostly lockpick). It was a good system though, if your lockpicks broke or your jammed the lock, your skill was too low. Much preferable to the systems of FO3 and FNV when it lists the required skills for performing a dialogue option. I know you're talking combat challenges, but I think the idea could be extended to _any_ 'skill target' (for lack of a better term).

 

One of the best flavor mods for FNV removed the skill target text from dialogue...

 

The counter argument for this up-front presentation of skill-dependent dialogue choices is that the player misses content if the dialogue option (and the skill check) aren't shown. This issue is resolved in a much more organic way though, by making the dialogue choice still an option but with the appropriate NPC response indicating a failed skill check. It is the NPC's response that indicates to the player their skill (which should be obvious based on the content of the dialogue and game mechanics) wasn't high enough to pull off the line.

 

Sorry I've derailed this a bit, but I think this issue goes hand-in-hand with your combat one.


Edited by agris, 13 November 2013 - 08:50 AM.

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#43
Lephys

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Going with what Trashman is saying, and throwing in the lockpicking example Agris just brought up:

 

Would you play a game in which nothing even told you the results of your lockpicking attempt? You don't even know how many lockpicks you have in your inventory, or whether or not you unlocked the door, or a lockpick broke...? You just play, and everything is obfuscated, MUAHAHAH!

 

Wouldn't that be a bit overboard?

 

So, I mean... there's definitely a "not enough information" point somewhere on the scale. I mean, what good is tactical combat if your decision is between attacking Creature A with God-only-knows how many HP left (is it 10, or 1000?), or attacking Creature B with God-only-knows how many HP left? Doesn't matter if you use numbers or not. But, why should your character be incapable of detecting slumping/slowing/extreme bloodflow out of a wound/etc. in the enemy you're slicing up? Or, if you're fighting a human, how do you not know that putting that sword all the way through his shoulder and out his back damaged him quite a bit? You yourself being human... could you not at the very least imagine the effects of the same thing happening to you, and estimate from there?



#44
Sensuki

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I don't see why.
There is a difference bitween "too much feedback" or "too detailed feedback" and "no feedback".
 
The player should have access to knowledge the PC should have. And hte PC should be able to roughly gauge the shape the enemy is in.
 
Some king of "expert" mode that purposfully handicaps you beyond reason for challange is silly IMHO.


I don't know what games you have been playing, but Baldur's Gate showed no health status of enemies and plenty of other RPGs before it also did not.

Josh Sawyer would agree with you that feedback is good because it allows people that do not already have an in depth knowledge of the system to engage with it.

Expert mode is a collection of settings that are forced to provide a more hardcore experience.

If you don't like that you can:

A) Do not tick expert mode
B) Do not tick expert mode, and then go into the options settings and enable the hardcore features you want and leave the ones you don't want out.

No Health feedback is already in for Expert mode whether you like it or not. What I am wondering is whether Defenses will be obfuscated from the combat log, because if this feature doesn't make it into expert mode then it most likely won't make it into the game.

It would be fair to assume that if stat popups are disabled on enemies then their values *should* be hidden by the game (perhaps not the bestiary) but I'm not 100% sure.

"The player should know these things" is not an invalid argument and that's why the default mode has exactly that. Your preference is actually the default setting. Why would you want to infect the hardcore setting with non-hardcore elements ?



#45
JFSOCC

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"The player should know these things" is not an invalid argument and that's why the default mode has exactly that. Your preference is actually the default setting. Why would you want to infect the hardcore setting with non-hardcore elements ?

Either way I hope there's a toggle in the difficulty settings, because I haven't decided yet if I want to play expert mode, but I do want hidden skill checks for my game.

#46
Hassat Hunter

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*GOG is an evil site... have spent more money on the classics in the last year that I've spent on "new titles"

It's more an indication that modern games are not nearly as good or grasping than old games than anything else.
A sad development :(

Like enemy health.
The "Near Deth", "Heavily Injured", "Injured", "Barely Wounded" etc do a far better job of portaying combat than "12/40"

The game will give you that feedback on default. Expert mode will turn this stuff off, which is something I think a lot of the 'yes' voters fail to understand. Expert mode turns ALL help off (and locks it).

Ehm, unlike your posts try to make out, both BG's actually HAVE this once you use tab to hover over them. Where do you think ThrashMan got those terms from? BG!

I don't see why it should be turned off completely, expert or none. It's just the right balance of information for both modes, nothing needed to be tweaked about further :/

I agree about skill/stat checks in convo's, but I am not quite sure those even existed in the BG's. They did in the KOTOR games, and they were 'hidden' there, I think it's a much better sollution than the F:NV method.

#47
Lephys

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Yeah, I'm kinda just wondering at what point "expert mode" becomes basically the opposite of a cheat code. I mean, what about a mode in which your screen simply doesn't display anything at all (just a black/blank screen), to simulate your wearing a blindfold while playing, just to make it tougher?

 

I very much like the idea of a mode that obfuscates specific values and things, but I'm just not sure the idea is to prevent the player from knowing anything about what's going on. Again, there's only so much you can hide before the tactical significance of choices goes out the window. It's the difference between "I don't know anything yet" and "I just plain have no information, ever."

 

Imagine one of those sliding-tile puzzles (with the one tile missing, so as to provide a space into which to always be able to slide a single tile) if you flipped it over so you couldn't see the picture you were trying to assemble. At that point, it would be purely guesswork, with no amount of cleverness involved. It wouldn't even be a puzzle anymore. You wouldn't even know when you had completed the image.


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#48
Sensuki

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Ehm, unlike your posts try to make out, both BG's actually HAVE this once you use tab to hover over them. Where do you think ThrashMan got those terms from? BG!


Baldur's Gate (1) does not. Took photo because cursor is not captured during Print Screen.
 

W1BMYjB.jpg


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#49
Mor

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I fully support this idea Sensuki, and despite the vocal (minority) in this thread, do think it adds a less tangible element of difficulty and suspension of disbelief. The original Fallout 1/2 did this in a manner, with 'invisible' skill checks during dialogue and obfuscated skill checks (mostly lockpick). It was a good system though, if your lockpicks broke or your jammed the lock, your skill was too low. Much preferable to the systems of FO3 and FNV when it lists the required skills for performing a dialogue option. I know you're talking combat challenges, but I think the idea could be extended to _any_ 'skill target' (for lack of a better term).

 

One of the best flavor mods for FNV removed the skill target text from dialogue...

 

The counter argument for this up-front presentation of skill-dependent dialogue choices is that the player misses content if the dialogue option (and the skill check) aren't shown. This issue is resolved in a much more organic way though, by making the dialogue choice still an option but with the appropriate NPC response indicating a failed skill check. It is the NPC's response that indicates to the player their skill (which should be obvious based on the content of the dialogue and game mechanics) wasn't high enough to pull off the line.

 

Sorry I've derailed this a bit, but I think this issue goes hand-in-hand with your combat one.

 

You say that combat should be handled like in FO1/2 dialogue system. which is the opposite of how FO1/2 combat system was handled... :blink: In FO1/2 you got information about the health status of every character, basically what anyone would be able to observe in that situation i.e. If the character is unhurt, wounded, or dying and with Awareness Perk you could even see the exact stats.

 

But we digress, Its not about how its being played in one game or another its about what this suggestion adds here. Expert mode is there to provide additional challenge. Going by Sensuki example, AC is the way you gauge your opponent, knowing if you are barely missing or completely outmatched allows you to adapt your tactic. While hiding that information as Sensuki suggest, makes the game less tactical and the same time adds nothing, other than maybe Sensuki playing memorization game with the manual.


Edited by Mor, 15 November 2013 - 03:06 AM.


#50
Sensuki

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No.

 

If I already know the DT, Vulnerabilities, Accuracy & Defenses of an enemy, then I can look at the stat popup and go oh okay - I see what I need to do here. That is exactly what I do not want. I want to figure it out for myself. That way if I am doing it wrong to begin with I can try different tactics and find something that works, and I find that more satisfying than being told all of that information up front. I already know the system design (the publicly known stuff) very well, probably better than most people here.

 

The system design is intuitive so it shouldn't be too much of a problem. I would rather come up with my own solutions to combat challenges without having knowledge of the enemy defenses/stats as I think it allows for more creativity, it is more immersive and it is more challenging and fun.

 

If something goes against the trends, such as a guy in light armor with a very high DT, I am not going to complain about that fact being obfuscated. I will accept it and deal with it. Like I did with the games of old.



#51
Sabotin

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Depending on how diverse/active enemies will be I think knowing some of their stats might not even be such a big deal. The player classes seem to have a bunch of different abilities and I believe someone said that enemies will have some unique ones, too. For example something like the monk that gets power from taking damage. You'd quickly learn to not get fooled by the low defenses. Or maybe a bunch of weaklings that powers up at low hp. AoE damage might not be such a good idea after all. Etc... But if such "tricks" are there then I guess the stat transparency doesn't even matter, expert or not.

 

On a related not, what about knowing what spells are being cast? 3e had you make spellcraft checks to recognize a spell iirc. Considering the cast times will be 0/3/6 seconds long this might be a factor? An extra unknown for expert mode?



#52
Sensuki

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We don't know many of the skills yet

 

Confirmed skills:

 

Stealth, Mechanics, Athletics, Survival.

 

Look up the D&D 4E handbook and you've probably got a bunch of other candidates.


Edited by Sensuki, 15 November 2013 - 06:48 AM.


#53
Lephys

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I might be mistaken, but I could've sworn the original Baldur's Gate DOES show enemy health approximations. It just doesn't show "uninjured." It starts with "barely injured," I think. I can't remember though. I'll have to check on my laptop shortly (can't check right now).

It's been a few months since I've played it (I picked up Enhanced Edition shortly after I started the original), but I seem to recall wondering that same thing while playing the original: "Hmm... I wonder if mouse-overs will tell me how hurt this enemy is...", and testing it out. My brain's even recalling trying it on something I hadn't attacked yet, only to think "Oh, it doesn't," then accidentally discovering that it shows on the injured foes while trying to choose a target while the game was paused.

#54
Mor

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No.

 

If I already know the DT, Vulnerabilities, Accuracy & Defenses of an enemy, then I can look at the stat popup and go oh okay - I see what I need to do here. That is exactly what I do not want. I want to figure it out for myself. 

We will have to disagree, hiding the feedback only dumbdown the few tactical elements we have, it's a con which out weight by far your supposed sense of discovery. What you suggest should be implemented(maybe it already is?) through the "bestiary", which you will fill up through reading books, conversation and/or combat. If that isn't enough UI transparency is your friend.



#55
Sensuki

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No.
 
If I already know the DT, Vulnerabilities, Accuracy & Defenses of an enemy, then I can look at the stat popup and go oh okay - I see what I need to do here. That is exactly what I do not want. I want to figure it out for myself.

We will have to disagree, hiding the feedback only dumbdown the few tactical elements we have, it's a con which out weight by far your supposed sense of discovery. What you suggest should be implemented(maybe it already is?) through the "bestiary", which you will fill up through reading books, conversation and/or combat. If that isn't enough UI transparency is your friend.

 

 
Already said I'm not going to read it. You already have what you want - the default settings and you go and vote yes, show me stats in Expert mode ... lol.
 

I might be mistaken, but I could've sworn the original Baldur's Gate DOES show enemy health approximations. It just doesn't show "uninjured." It starts with "barely injured," I think. I can't remember though. I'll have to check on my laptop shortly (can't check right now).

It's been a few months since I've played it (I picked up Enhanced Edition shortly after I started the original), but I seem to recall wondering that same thing while playing the original: "Hmm... I wonder if mouse-overs will tell me how hurt this enemy is...", and testing it out. My brain's even recalling trying it on something I hadn't attacked yet, only to think "Oh, it doesn't," then accidentally discovering that it shows on the injured foes while trying to choose a target while the game was paused.


Many people get confused. BGT/BG Tutu and BG:EE show Health Approximations because they use the BG2 engine. BG1 does not show them.


Edited by Sensuki, 15 November 2013 - 08:30 PM.


#56
Mor

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No.
 
If I already know the DT, Vulnerabilities, Accuracy & Defenses of an enemy, then I can look at the stat popup and go oh okay - I see what I need to do here. That is exactly what I do not want. I want to figure it out for myself.

We will have to disagree, hiding the feedback only dumbdown the few tactical elements we have, it's a con which out weight by far your supposed sense of discovery. What you suggest should be implemented(maybe it already is?) through the "bestiary", which you will fill up through reading books, conversation and/or combat. If that isn't enough UI transparency is your friend.

 
Already said I'm not going to read it. You already have what you want - the default settings and you go and vote yes, show me stats in Expert mode ... lol.

Its more than that. Your OP doesn't provide anything to make informative vote regarding the need for something like in your AC check example. Only some vague appeal to sense of atmosphere in other titles that doesn't actually address this. Did I enjoy more the titles you mentioned and had no AC values? yes. Was it because they did't have AC values it? no.

As many pointed out, it makes no sense to hide information which should be apparent to anyone with eyes to see, and will only hurt gameplay(in the same sense as placing a big censored box over the enemy) while what you are looking to achieve with that IMO can be achieved far better with my Bestiary suggestion, which unlike your idea will only improve.

EDIT: sorry for the large font in previous post, apparently using zoom in chrom and BBCOde mode has its side effects.

Edited by Mor, 15 November 2013 - 09:26 PM.


#57
Sensuki

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Its more than that. Your OP doesn't provide anything to make informative vote regarding the need for something like in your AC check example. Only some vague appeal to sense of atmosphere in other titles that doesn't actually address this. Did I enjoy more the titles you mentioned and had no AC values? yes. Was it because they did't have AC values it? no.

As many pointed out, it makes no sense to hide information which should be apparent to anyone with eyes to see, and will only hurt gameplay(in the same sense as placing a big censored box over the enemy) while what you are looking to achieve with that IMO can be achieved far better with my Bestiary suggestion, which unlike your idea will only improve.


You still don't get it.

The whole point of Expert Mode is to provide a mode that provides that "horrible old-school method of obfuscation" as well as enables the more punishing gameplay elements that retards like me enjoy. There are a big enough crowd of us to warrant it's input, especially over at the RPG Codex. Even the lead designer Josh Sawyer thinks obfuscation stinks, but the mode is being provided regardless.

It does not matter whether hiding the Defense scores or skill check threshholds are better or worse, it's about providing that old-school, more hardcore experience. Expert Mode is not a 'selection of help and hardcore' it is 95-100% of help settings off, as the devs described it.

This is obviously something that you do not like, and I have no doubt that Expert Mode will not be for you. Way to cast a null vote.

I also think the name of the mode is a bit confusing, there's obviously a few people who "want to be experts" but want the transparency. Congratulations - default settings for you. Classic Mode would be a better name IMO.

The settings are fully modular. Instead of ticking Expert Mode at the start you just go and untick all of the options you don't want and leave on the ones you do. So instead of ticking Expert Mode when you start a game, you just start a normal game, and go into the options and disable the conversation stuff that you want disabled and keep the combat help on. Simple.

Expert Mode is an all or nothing mode that can only be enabled before starting the game and it cannot be turned off.

Edited by Sensuki, 15 November 2013 - 09:45 PM.


#58
Mor

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It does not matter whether hiding the Defense scores or skill check threshholds are better or worse, it's about providing that old-school, more hardcore experience. Expert Mode is not a 'selection of help and hardcore' it is 95-100% of help settings off, as the dev's described it.

No, it seems that you don't get it. Again, the AC example you provided, is not there to make your life easier(help). It provides vital information about your encounter, which is the only way to gauge your opponent strength, just as like with health info, it is nothing you shouldn't be able to see with your own eyes. Such info is no more "help" then the description you got in FO when used the binoculars on the surrounding.

Just because you keep throwing around "Old School" and "Hardcore", it doesn't mean that you are the only "old school" player who might enjoy extra level of challenge in the game, nor that we gone senile forgetting that despite years of modding our classics still has their fair share of issues. So unless you have anything other than BG1 did it, your argument is as logical as the suggestion from few post back, to fit the player with a blind fold, you know as "horrible old-school method of obfuscation", to provide some Hardcore experience ...

Edited by Mor, 15 November 2013 - 11:16 PM.


#59
Sensuki

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You want to debate about the pros and cons of showing and obfuscating Defenses? Before we do that, let's clear something up.
 
First of all, this is how it is.
 

How will this information be conveyed to users?

For armor, will the UI display the effective DT values in a tooltip? If not, will it be hidden within a deeper menu? Will there be positive DT modifiers for armor?

Will the battle log display damage calculations? Example: Right click on a damage event to see an itemized list of modifiers.

 

Currently, it's displayed in the tooltip. An enemy's tooltip starts out with defense and DT numbers filled in with grey ???. As you attack the target's defenses, they get filled in with the real values. Additionally, we're planning to allow the bestiary entries to temp-fill those values. So if you've defeated a certain number of ogres, you basically know what the Platonic form of ogre has for defenses. When you encounter an ogre, those grey ???s will be replaced with grey "Platonic form" values. An individual ogre's defenses may vary from that base, but that's what you'll start with until you attack those defenses.
 
If any of your characters are currently selected and have attacks prepped, their relative Accuracy stats with those attacks will be displayed next to the target's corresponding defenses. If an Accuracy is lower than a comparable defense, it is displayed in red. If higher, it's displayed in blue. If multiple attackers are attacking the same defense, their Accuracy is displayed as an average and notated accordingly.
 
Finally, most/all of these display options can be disabled or are automatically disabled in Expert mode.
E: If you hover on any entry in the combat log, you get a "verbose" dump of all of the elements that contribute to the formula.

 
By default, you will get exactly what you want. The defense values of enemies will be displayed in the tootlip, after you attack them you will get the real value of that defense.
Because the showing of defenses are being handled by a tooltip rather than by the combat log, they may actually not be displayed in the combat log, because you'll know what the defense is anyway.
 
Expert mode will disable these tooltips. It will disable the Health status of enemies as well. These two things have already been confirmed. Now this thread is about whether or not the display of Defenses comes up in the combat log as well. Are you saying that you will play with these tooltips disabled, but you want to still see the Defense values in the combat log ?
 
I am pretty sure you are not going to disable these tooltips anyway by the sound of it, that's why I believe Expert Mode will not be for you.

Instead, as I previously said, you will not tick expert mode when you start a game, you will have the option of manually disabling the things you do not wish to see via the options menu.

Edited by Sensuki, 15 November 2013 - 11:46 PM.


#60
Mor

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As previously said, magically gaining information about character stats in way of a tooltip or otherwise, is considered help and thus fit the bill of expert mode. While removing information that you should be able to see or gauge from the situation, is as smart as blindfold.





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