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Author Topic: Let's play AoD!  (Read 566855 times)
zhirzzh
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« Reply #450 on: January 24, 2008, 07:22:35 pm »

1. It's possible to make the start of the game too complex.
In that you can bewilder the player with huge amounts of options, sure - but this is doing almost the opposite. The player is spending the first period of the game without needing to choose where to go, what quest to do, what to aim for, what equipment to get, how to prepare... he's thrown into a hugely more limited situation where he might get perhaps four options at a time.
Compared to the complexity of choosing an action in an open world with many NPCs, locations, potentially conflicting goals..., the complexity of picking from a few options in a tight situation is minimal.

Yes. What I'm saying is that it's now about twice as complex as it was before, and it should stop here.

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Bear in mind that this also looks much more complex from the design side than from the playing side. The designer sees the whole tree, where the player takes only a single path.

I see your point.
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A lot of people typically rush through character creation to get into the game itself....and put much more thought into stat increases when they level.

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I seriously doubt it.

I don't. Those pre-created characters in Fallout and Arcanum are there for a reason. If AoD will also have those, I withdraw my objection. I haven't seen any mention of it before, but that may be because the forum, which represents the most hardcore element of the potential audience, isn't likely to use them or care about them.

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As an example, it took me quite a while to figure out which stats and attributes were used in checks in Arcanum. After I figured it out I leveled more in that direction, but if there had been a lot of persuasion checks before I had realized that a high Int and CH don't make up for a lack of pursuasion, I would have been screwed. So, while I have no problem with stat checks early in the game, I would hesitate to throw checks of different stats into the same dialog path if the player that has yet to level up.

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What?
You're saying that the problem was that it took you a long time to realize how stat checks work, right? So how do you conclude that they should be delayed? The time it takes you to realize how things work will depend on how early they're used clearly - delaying them will simply delay your understanding further, and make the problem worse.
What needs changing is the time it takes you to understand the way things work - i.e. stat checks need to be clearly used early. You're not going to be "screwed" by misunderstanding the early stat checks, since there won't be harsh long-term implications. If you die, the implications are serious for the PC, but not for the player.

In any case, PC failure (even through lack of player understanding) doesn't mean that the player is "screwed". So long as failing stat checks has interesting implications, the player is fine. [this probably isn't as true of Arcanum as would be ideal]

I think we're taking different paths here. I want the consequences of failing a stat check that doesn't involve doing something stupid, to be minor, and not get up to "your charismatic charecter isn't intimidating, so he has to fight" levels until later in the game, so the player can level out of it and doesn't have to restart. You want him to be forced to restart quickly; to minimize time lost.

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I like tweaking creation so it won't bother me, but I think I'm in the minority there.

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Of the AoD audience? I can't be sure, but I doubt it.

Point. Remember though, that the games potential audience is larger than the codex.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2008, 07:25:12 pm by zhirzzh » Logged
Vince
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« Reply #451 on: January 24, 2008, 08:23:23 pm »

2. A lot of people typically rush through character creation to get into the game itself
As far as I know most RPG geeks LOVE character creation process. In fact, I suspect that one can make a game consisting of nothing but insanely detailed character creation and it will sell like hot cakes.

I can easily spend an hour or two creating parties in games like Wizardry, Darklands, ToEE, IWD, etc.
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puppyonastik
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« Reply #452 on: January 24, 2008, 08:56:51 pm »

Same here.
That's why Arcanum has such a draw for me, the sheer amount of options one has at their disposal to define their character is outstanding for a CRPG. Frankly, (even though it might be a stretch) I hope you consider offering the same or more options for character design in your next game, Vince. It would REALLY be appreciated.

Edit: Besides, I don't think it would be to hard to come up with that many or more skills, attributes, etc. especially since you have all these fans here that would be more than happy to brain storm for you.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2008, 09:01:49 pm by puppyonastik » Logged

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Morbus
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« Reply #453 on: January 25, 2008, 07:05:02 am »

2. A lot of people typically rush through character creation to get into the game itself
As far as I know most RPG geeks LOVE character creation process. In fact, I suspect that one can make a game consisting of nothing but insanely detailed character creation and it will sell like hot cakes.
I'll drink to that. I love creating characters...
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Priapist
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« Reply #454 on: January 25, 2008, 07:16:58 am »

Pretty much every time my P&P group decides to start a new game, we entertain notions of giving a fairly shonky TMNT RPG a run - you get to roll animal type and so forth, but we never really get any further than character creation. The game just isn't much fun, no matter what the GM does. But it's great fun to waste a day alternately rolling then pissing and moaning that you're an anthropomorphic seagull or possum.
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Scott
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« Reply #455 on: January 25, 2008, 09:02:37 am »


You should choose a style and stick with it. My personal preference would be always putting quotation marks around spoken lines, and having phrases or lines without quotes be actions or descriptions, as in a novel.

IMO, since the vast majority of dialog text will be just that, it should be plain and the exception, actions, should be square bracketed[] or italicized or something.
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cardtrick
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« Reply #456 on: January 25, 2008, 11:57:13 am »


You should choose a style and stick with it. My personal preference would be always putting quotation marks around spoken lines, and having phrases or lines without quotes be actions or descriptions, as in a novel.

IMO, since the vast majority of dialog text will be just that, it should be plain and the exception, actions, should be square bracketed[] or italicized or something.


That's very reasonable. I care most about consistency. I would, personally, prefer the quotations marks, just because I find them far less distracting than italics, []'s, {}'s, or *'s, but that may just be me. One way or another, as long as it's consistent it will quickly fade into the background and no one will notice it while playing.
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Helian
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« Reply #457 on: January 25, 2008, 03:58:42 pm »

I hoped for a general consensus about five pages ago, but since I prefer waiting for eternal peace, I'll  add my fuel to the fire:
(Disclaimer: I've tried to follow the discussion attentively, but as I wasn't involved, I haven't analyzed every single post, so it's quite possible that I missed something; also, my English is far from perfect, so don't be surprised if some of the following sentences are a bit clumsy and/or unclear)
-First of all, let's go back to the initial situation: The PC has arrived, killed the merchant and now there's just him, the dazzled bodyguard and the loot. In a real life situation, the possible outcomes would be infinite, and the meaningful would still be a great deal too many, so the first design decision is to limit the complexity/number of the options (I agree that a well and intricately designed first quest is a good thing, but it also sets a standard for similar quests and might therefore stand out a bit if it receives so much exclusive treatment [which has already gone far beyond issues of general importance]). In my opinion, Vince's latest suggestion offers more than enough for such a small quest and anything more (in number of options/possible outcomes) would be overkill.
-On the "truth-lie"-issue: If I were the player, I'd expect some kind of indication when my character is going to lie - but not when he's going to tell the truth, because that's what I'd expect, and I do assume most players would. As to the indicator, I'd certainly prefer subtext like galsiah's to a simple [lie] tag.
-On nitpicking (@Vince): Of course you can tear apart every single sentence, restructure, reword, reword again...but in the end, it's far too time consuming to do that over the forums. Assuming you don't want to hire an editor, you could assign some of the enthusiastic guys (native speakers) here with that task: You send a portion of the written dialogue to each of them, they correct obvious errors/typos and give you feedback. That way, you keep tiny issues from getting out of hand (and piling up in threads like this one).
-Let's Play!
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cardtrick
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« Reply #458 on: January 25, 2008, 04:09:09 pm »

On nitpicking (@Vince): Of course you can tear apart every single sentence, restructure, reword, reword again...but in the end, it's far too time consuming to do that over the forums. Assuming you don't want to hire an editor, you could assign some of the enthusiastic guys (native speakers) here with that task: You send a portion of the written dialogue to each of them, they correct obvious errors/typos and give you feedback.

Yeah, I'd do that. Not for the whole game, because I don't have much time and I want to remain somewhat unspoiled, but I'd happily do sections if Vince broke it up and sent chunks to each of us.

-Let's Play!

Indeed.
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zhirzzh
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« Reply #459 on: January 25, 2008, 04:18:31 pm »

On nitpicking (@Vince): Of course you can tear apart every single sentence, restructure, reword, reword again...but in the end, it's far too time consuming to do that over the forums. Assuming you don't want to hire an editor, you could assign some of the enthusiastic guys (native speakers) here with that task: You send a portion of the written dialogue to each of them, they correct obvious errors/typos and give you feedback.

Yeah, I'd do that. Not for the whole game, because I don't have much time and I want to remain somewhat unspoiled, but I'd happily do sections if Vince broke it up and sent chunks to each of us.

I'd be willing do that too. I have mild OCD, so no typos are getting past me Smile .
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Spion
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« Reply #460 on: January 27, 2008, 02:49:28 pm »

more screenshots plz:D
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Vince
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« Reply #461 on: January 27, 2008, 03:11:13 pm »

A-coming.

Edit: I'm working on some stuff, but I'll try to post something today.
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Vince
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« Reply #462 on: January 27, 2008, 09:42:00 pm »

Alright, Nick has added more scripts supporting all that PnP craziness, so let's have some fun...

[attachment deleted to save space]
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Vince
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« Reply #463 on: January 27, 2008, 09:43:46 pm »

More...

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cardtrick
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« Reply #464 on: January 27, 2008, 10:08:42 pm »

Awesome!

I'll post more later, but it's really damn cool to finally see this in action. Cool though it was to read the script, it's far better to see it in the engine. Great work.
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