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Author Topic: Let's play AoD!  (Read 562694 times)
galsiah
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« Reply #390 on: January 22, 2008, 10:16:50 pm »

Not bad.
A few questions/observations:
1) What's the advantage for the assassin in intimidating-then-attacking? Does he get some combat advantage over attacking straight away?

2) It seems like the "Take a step towards the chest" option for the assassin is a universally bad idea, regardless of the PC's stats/skills - right? There's no chance that the guard doesn't yell based on some check? [not a criticism - just wanting to see it clearly]

3) When you're the guard, you'd presumably have the option to "wait for him to leave" first, then call for help if he starts going for the chest??

4) On that note, might the assassin decide to go for the chest or attack when you're playing the mercenary - or does he automatically leave if you let him? If there's a decision, how would he make it - e.g. what stat checks? Or would he only start taking this action as a response to some specific mercenary action (perhaps failed action)?

5) Since the assassin has the option to delay an attack until it suits him, how about letting the mercenary do the same - i.e. launching an offensive as the assassin is starting to climb out of the window (presuming it's not a ground floor window, he'd be pretty vulnerable then)??
I think this is a reasonable idea for a few reasons:
First, having things go [PC allows assassin to leave] [Assassin leaves] [End], is rather brief compared to any of the other paths. The player could come away thinking that the vignette has only one choice. Of course he might be pleased to discover that there can be more to it on a future playthrough, but why not make sure he knows first time?
Second, it makes sense - why attack an assassin in a fair fight when you can take him on while he's scrambling for purchase on a window-ledge?
Third it offers the possibility of more diverse outcomes - e.g. assassin falls + lives/dies; merc falls lives/dies; one or other gets stabbed..., then, depending on their final positions, noise caused by falling bodies etc., they might be in a position to loot the chest, and/or the other's body.

Anyway, just a thought.

Quote from: cardtrick
why the hell not?
My sentiments exactly Smile.
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Priapist
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« Reply #391 on: January 23, 2008, 12:14:56 am »

See this is what I love about roleplaying games. A small and rather innocuous affair such as breaking into someone's room and killing them really has no end of permutations when structured as a narrative, even with such a small set of actors and props. I mean, we haven't even considered what might happen if someone from the Thieves guild should turn up on the tip that the merchant's worldly possessions make easy pickings. Wink

Just don't get too carried away. Seeing AoD sometime this year would be nice.
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xenocide
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« Reply #392 on: January 23, 2008, 12:41:39 am »

I like it.  After just arguing for a couple of pages for only 2 options, I won't say it is my favorite, but it is definitely better than the original.


That being said, I think it is important to make choosing to attack right away a viable option.  As mentioned by someone (Vince I believe) a long time ago, if choosing the intimitade leads to:

1. attack
2. get attacked
3. leave

and all attacks are the same as if you had simply chosen attack at the start, ie. normal combat begins, why even have an option to attack right away?  I still say talking to the guard is a risk and should carry a penalty if the check is failed.  I also think a reward for attacking right away would be nice.  I see it something like this:

1. Attack
2. I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down.


If 1 & Dex 7 or above: Your attack is so quick the guard is caught off balance: PC small combat bonus
If 1 & Dex=10: PC big combat bonus - maybe even instant death for the guard, you did say ability scores of 10 would get some pimp options
If 1 & Dex 6 or less: normal combat begins
If 2 with a failed check:  The guard takes advantage of you running your mouth: PC combat penalty

If 2 with a passed check:

1. Attack
2. Take a step toward the chest.
3. Take what the merchant clutches in his hand and leave.


If 1: You fooled the guard: PC combat bonus
If 2: You are dumb, extra guards called
If 3: Leave


I know it seems to add some things, but they are all skill checks that still leave the same number of choices for the PC.  However, this way a quick PC gets an advantage for using his quickness and taking the attack to the guard right away, therefore making the choice of attacking right away a more viable option.  Like I said before , why else even have it?  Every PC should try to intimidate because there is no reason not to.  Plus, I still think you are taking a chance trying to talk to the guard and if you fail you should get a penalty.

« Last Edit: January 23, 2008, 12:46:14 am by xenocide » Logged
Helian
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« Reply #393 on: January 23, 2008, 04:34:05 am »

Just don't get too carried away. Seeing AoD sometime this year would be nice.
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Vince
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« Reply #394 on: January 23, 2008, 09:46:45 am »

I mean, we haven't even considered what might happen if someone from the Thieves guild should turn up on the tip that the merchant's worldly possessions make easy pickings. Wink
That's the thief's vignette. A thief shows up before the assassin. That's why the merchant is already up.

1) What's the advantage for the assassin in intimidating-then-attacking? Does he get some combat advantage over attacking straight away?
None. Since the conversation takes several screens now, all reasonable options must be there.

Quote
2) It seems like the "Take a step towards the chest" option for the assassin is a universally bad idea, regardless of the PC's stats/skills - right? There's no chance that the guard doesn't yell based on some check? [not a criticism - just wanting to see it clearly]
Correct.

Quote
3) When you're the guard, you'd presumably have the option to "wait for him to leave" first, then call for help if he starts going for the chest??

4) On that note, might the assassin decide to go for the chest or attack when you're playing the mercenary - or does he automatically leave if you let him? If there's a decision, how would he make it - e.g. what stat checks? Or would he only start taking this action as a response to some specific mercenary action (perhaps failed action)?
The assassin goes for the chest. Then you either attack him or call for help or wait for him to finish and leave.

Quote
5) Since the assassin has the option to delay an attack until it suits him, how about letting the mercenary do the same - i.e. launching an offensive as the assassin is starting to climb out of the window (presuming it's not a ground floor window, he'd be pretty vulnerable then)??
We'll consider it.
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xenocide
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« Reply #395 on: January 23, 2008, 12:26:49 pm »

1) What's the advantage for the assassin in intimidating-then-attacking? Does he get some combat advantage over attacking straight away?
None. Since the conversation takes several screens now, all reasonable options must be there.


If this means all attack options here are the same, then I retrack my earlier statement.  Now I don't like it.

Vince, here is a post by you from page 17:


Many people want meaningful (i.e. not fake, leading to the same outcome) choices *with* consequences. I gave you a very simple choice here: kill the guard or intimidate him. Turns out that the successful intimidation option avoids the fight and, what's even worse, limits your looting experience.

I think that "and less boring than attacking which we can always just do next anyways" comment summarizes what most people expected and explains the disappointments. Intimidating the guard, and then attacking and looting the place sounds lame to me. You want the loot? You must go through the guard. You want to handle things peacefully? Forget about the loot, try not to think about the sweet, sweet loot that the guard must be loaded with, and leave. Sound simple and logical to me, but for some reasons we aren't seeing eye-to-eye here.

Suggested "loot and face teh consequences" scenario is a reload fest that isn't about role-playing but about getting all the loot you can carry. Chris Avellone's cartoon comes to mind here. It sounds that people are curious about peaceful options, but in the end, they still prefer and expect some good ol' fashioned violence. Any comments?

If all attacks are the same, you have just turned this situation into exactly what you were arguing against.
Here are the choices we have now:

Take a step towards the chest.  It is cool that this leads to PC death, but ultimatly what this means is the palyer will have to reload and redo the dialog and take another choice.  So, the person who would take this choice still has to take one of the other choices.  For the person taking this choice, it is your second time through the dialog.


1. Attack
2. I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down.



If 1 Attack
If 2 fail Attack
If 2 pass Attack
If 2 pas leave.

the same as:

1. attack
2. leave

right from the begining!

You have just taken a situation that could have set your game apart from mainstream games and turned it into just what we complain about in Bioware games, meaningless choices that all lead to the same outcome.

I am getting a feeling that you do not want to edit the original dioalog to make it more clear what the PC intends.  If that is the case and the choice is the original and the new way, I vote for an unchanged original.  I would rather have a slightly unclear meaningful choice than 3 clear meaningless ones.
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Vince
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« Reply #396 on: January 23, 2008, 01:43:21 pm »

If this means all attack options here are the same, then I retrack my earlier statement.  Now I don't like it.
The attack options can't be different because of your unloaded crossbow. No matter how fast or sneaky your character is, when he/she starts reloading a crossbow, any chance of surprising the guard is gone.

Quote
Vince, here is a post by you from page 17:
That's my position (and the explanation of the original design). I can argue and make good points all day, but the truth is, most people found the original design too short and abrupt. Obviously, I can't argue with everyone who plays the game, adding a "wtf?" question and inserting what you quoted as the answer.

So, since the original design had to be fixed and extended, I had no choice but to add attack options too. Anyway, I posted that for discussions, so discuss and argue.

Quote
If 1 Attack
If 2 fail Attack
If 2 pass Attack
If 2 pas leave.

the same as:

1. attack
2. leave

right from the begining!
I know. Unfortunately, most people haven't been satisfied with the original. The first reactions were negative. Here is what you said:

"I said earlier that I expected to be able to attack after the intimidation.  Maybe attack was wrong, but I definitely expected to be able to do something. I was suprised that my character just left. "

Sure, after reading several pages of arguments, you understood and agreed with my design, but people who are playing the game, won't stop, go to our forums, and argue until they see my point. They will be disappointed and will start forming negative impressions, and I'd rather avoid that. Mind you, we aren't talking about pleasing everyone. We are talking about pleasing people like you, like cardtrick, galsiah, priapist, etc. People who like and support this kind of games.

If they say that something is wrong then something is definitely wrong.
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John Yossarian
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« Reply #397 on: January 23, 2008, 02:46:03 pm »

Maybe you can make the attack following the intimidation success carry penalties too then. And don't no one bitch about that not being a success, since being able to leave without fighting is forgiving enough. In any case, I'm OK with this version.
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xenocide
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« Reply #398 on: January 23, 2008, 03:55:13 pm »

That's my position (and the explanation of the original design). I can argue and make good points all day, but the truth is, most people found the original design too short and abrupt. Obviously, I can't argue with everyone who plays the game, adding a "wtf?" question and inserting what you quoted as the answer.

So, since the original design had to be fixed and extended, I had no choice but to add attack options too. Anyway, I posted that for discussions, so discuss and argue.

Quote
If 1 Attack
If 2 fail Attack
If 2 pass Attack
If 2 pas leave.

the same as:

1. attack
2. leave

right from the begining!
I know. Unfortunately, most people haven't been satisfied with the original. The first reactions were negative. Here is what you said:

"I said earlier that I expected to be able to attack after the intimidation.  Maybe attack was wrong, but I definitely expected to be able to do something. I was suprised that my character just left. "

Sure, after reading several pages of arguments, you understood and agreed with my design, but people who are playing the game, won't stop, go to our forums, and argue until they see my point. They will be disappointed and will start forming negative impressions, and I'd rather avoid that. Mind you, we aren't talking about pleasing everyone. We are talking about pleasing people like you, like cardtrick, galsiah, priapist, etc. People who like and support this kind of games.

If they say that something is wrong then something is definitely wrong.



Your right I did say that, and I said it because I was suprised that more options were not avaliable after the dialog.  The dialog is the key though.


2. I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down.


I do like this dialog.  However, I do not think it gives the proper impreson if it leads to jumping right out the window.  I did not expect more options for options sake, but because the dialog lead me to believe that more options were forthcomming.  It is a subtle difference perhaps, but an important one I think.  I do not think most people would be upset with only 2 options as long as they know what two options they  are choosing between. 

The [truth\lie] indicators have been liked by some but have not went over all that well.  Adding PC thougts after the dialog seemed popular, but as others have said and I agree, if they are put in they should probably be in the game more often and that means a lot of reworking the game.

If this new dialog is the best comprimse that is ok with me, as I said it is not my favorite, but something did need to be done based on player's (including mine) reactions.  I don't want to lead to 10 more pages of people throwing out ideas, including me, but I do have one more idea, and then I'll try to leave this particular issue alone as I think I have made my thoughts on it fairly clear.

This is what we have now:

1. Attack
2. I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down.


A choice between an action and a dialog.  What if it was changed to the choice between 2 actions? Something like:

1. Attack
2. We did what we came for, and this guard looks like a seasoned fighter.  It may be best to slip out quietly.  Try to buy some time to jump out the window.


Then, if 2 the PC says "I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down." and you are left with:

The guard studies you, evaluating his chances. Finally he makes his decision and charges at you.
or
The guard studies you, evaluating his chances. Finally he nods and lowers his sword, but shows no intention of backing away.


This way your original dialog is maintianed.  All players know exactly what they are choosing.  You do not have to rework any of the other parts of the game to add something new.  You are simply choosing between two different actions.  And, you do not have a layer of meaningless choices. 

Also, this works well from the guard's point of view as well.  As a guard it could go something like:

1. Attack
2. The assasin has clearly done what he came for.  Since your meal ticket is already dead there is no use risking our neck any longer, it may be best to let him slip away.  Ready yourself but let him make the next move.


Guard makes an indimidation check
If pass: The assasin says "I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down."  Keeping his eye on you the assasin slips out the window.
If fail:  The assasin clearly doesn't think much of you.  With a grin on his face he attacks.

So as the guard if you choose to you can try to scare the assasin away.
 
« Last Edit: January 23, 2008, 03:58:23 pm by xenocide » Logged
Vince
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« Reply #399 on: January 23, 2008, 04:15:08 pm »

More opinions? Come on, people, don't be shy.
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Special_Can
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« Reply #400 on: January 23, 2008, 04:24:28 pm »

 The problem with adding another attack choice to the first option is that it might lead to everyone choosing that intimidate check, and now there is no consequences to choosing it. My super strong assassin with no talking skills will try the first option just in case. If we are talking about replayability, this helps to ruin it. This is the type of stuff I thought Vince was trying to get away from.

 Just add a [truth] and be done with it. Y/N?
« Last Edit: January 23, 2008, 04:37:51 pm by Special_Can » Logged

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Vince
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« Reply #401 on: January 23, 2008, 04:35:28 pm »

If we are talking about replayability, this helps to ruin it. This is the type of stuff I thought Vince was trying to get away from.
Is it fair to say that most people didn't like the original and expected MOAR?

Quote
Just add a [truth] and be done with it. Y/N?
I don't like truth/lie indicators, besides, as I already explained you can't use one without the other, otherwise I'm forcing you to tell the truth. And if we have the lie option, then what? Then we'll end up with something that resembles what I posted yesterday.

I'm open to different suggestions though. Maybe a persuasion line?
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Special_Can
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« Reply #402 on: January 23, 2008, 05:00:35 pm »

 I understand the disappointment one might feel when they see the [truth] and not the [lie] but as it stands, that's all there is. They are just finding out one step earlier. I'd rather that trade off then any other.

 This is obviously just my opinion, which you asked for.
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galsiah
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« Reply #403 on: January 23, 2008, 05:08:49 pm »

More opinions? Come on, people, don't be shy.
I think you ought to throw in some differences between the attack options, even if they're not greatly significant. Perhaps the main reason for including attack options at various times was to achieve clarity, and not force anything on the player. However, once you've got them it just seems a waste to have each be the same.

Clearly reloading the crossbow before combat isn't an option, but there are other ways to throw in some differences. For a start, I think it's pretty mad for an assassin to go out without other weapons - precisely because he could easily get into this situation. Crossbows can't be reloaded quickly, so it's daft for a solo professional killer to rely on a crossbow as the only weapon.
I'd suggest giving the assassin at least a dagger or throwing knives - possibly both (they could be relatively low quality, of course).

Once you've done that, there's quite a bit of potential: in some scenarios the assassin could have the opportunity to draw a knife/dagger before combat starts; he could get a free throwing knife attack in; he could get to attempt a critical strike type attack (after passing suitably difficult checks). Alternatively, most of those things could go wrong - the merc could see him going for the knife and yell for help (guards arrive one turn later than if the yell happens before the assassin decides to attack); see him going for the knife and attack before he's prepared (initial dodge penalty?); dodge the throwing knife and get in closer before combat starts; evade the knife, charge, and attempt to barge the assassin through the window (same situation as charging as the assassin attempts to leave)....

Since it makes sense for the assassin to come with more than one weapon, and it allows you a lot more latitude in coming up with reasonable, different options, I think it'd be a good idea.

Obviously there's no need to go crazy, but I don't see the downside in mixing up the combat conditions at least a little. The implications don't need to be major - mainly it'd just provide a bit of flavour.


Quote from: Vince
I don't like truth/lie indicators...
Fair enough - I'm not crazy about them.
Quote
...besides, as I already explained you can't use one without the other...
I still disagree here. The point is to add clarity. You could quite reasonably use one of the "inner voice" follow-ups alone, without another - since the point is to make the option clear, rather than to mark it out from alternatives. Similarly, using [truth] without a [lie] is fine from a functional point of view: it does exactly what is intended - i.e. provides clarity for that option.

Granted there's a psychological issue, since seeing "[truth]" will make many players think "Where's the [lie]??". However, all that's doing is highlighting the omission of an extra option. There are already countless options you haven't included, so there's no particular reason to think that a corresponding [lie] must be. The only problem is that more players will tend to think "Strange, there's no lie option" than think "Strange, there's no [unrelated-nonexistent-but-appropriate-option].

As for the "then what?" I think that giving the assassin more weapons gives you many more options - both opportunities for the assassin, and responses for the merc.
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zhirzzh
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« Reply #404 on: January 23, 2008, 05:14:52 pm »


*snip*

A choice between an action and a dialog.  What if it was changed to the choice between 2 actions? Something like:

1. Attack
2. We did what we came for, and this guard looks like a seasoned fighter.  It may be best to slip out quietly.  Try to buy some time to jump out the window.


Then, if 2 the PC says "I was paid to kill one, and since I don't work for free, you can relax and put your sword down."

I don't like this. I think of dialog as a game unto itself. I much prefer going Arcanum style, and providing options to say different things, over pure skill checks (there should of course be some skill checks). This makes it more of a valid alternative to combat, verbal combat if you will, and is better than a non combat player simply raising his skills at the right time and choosing a "persuade him" option. I know this is off topic, but I want to get others thoughts on this.

Edit: I agree with everything Galsiah just said.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2008, 05:18:57 pm by zhirzzh » Logged
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