Author Topic: How will leveling work?  (Read 12765 times)

Offline x4000

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #30 on: February 08, 2011, 10:38:02 AM »
I appreciate the thoughts -- really -- but this is exactly the sort of debate that would derail us from actually even making it to alpha.  Lots of people like levels, including us, and for now that's the way we're going.  Things change, of course, but one of the reasons we're not soliciting feedback at the moment on gameplay designs is that everyone has a different opinion.  If we tried to go with the average opinion or the majority opinion, that would really be design by committee and probably would be a game we ourselves wouldn't want to play.  For the broad design, we're going with our own opinions and testing feedback, which has served us well in the past.

I understand the arguments about leveling, and depending on the context I agree, but when it comes to certain genres I expect me some levels there. ;)
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Offline Nalgas

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #31 on: February 08, 2011, 10:55:04 AM »
Hahaha. :)  I really did like Star Control 2, actually, and it was mildly an inspiration for AI War (in terms of having a lot of space to explore with new things always cropping up).  I only got to play it very occasionally at a friend's house growing up, though, so my experience with it is somewhat limite.d

Just saw this again when this thread popped back up.  If you somehow have any free time left with all the other stuff going on right now, the entire game got released for free a few years ago: http://sc2.sourceforge.net/  The original developers were able to dig up ancient copies of the source code and art files, and people have ported it to run on modern computers.  They only thing missing is that they don't own the name anymore.

Kind of interesting to go back and look at it and see what things about it have held up over time (most of it, surprisingly, especially the gameplay, music, and writing/humor, and a decent amount of the graphics) and what hasn't aged well (some of the UI stuff is a bit awkward or missing newer features we take for granted these days, but it's actually a lot easier to get back into than even some things that are several years newer like Fallout).  There still haven't been many things in the nearly 20 years since then that have combined multiple genres as well, and few games have ever managed to make so many different races/species feel so unique (which they pulled off with just a handful of frames of animation for their background images, unique fonts and background music for each, and a metric crapload of clever writing).
« Last Edit: February 08, 2011, 05:11:15 PM by Nalgas »

Offline tigersfan

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #32 on: February 08, 2011, 04:16:31 PM »
That's not fair man, you get me all excited about being able to grab SC2, then your link is broken!!! That's just mean man! :-)

Offline Nalgas

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #33 on: February 08, 2011, 05:13:14 PM »
That's not fair man, you get me all excited about being able to grab SC2, then your link is broken!!! That's just mean man! :-)

Weird.  It ate my link and kind of mangled it a bit.  I guess the url tag works slightly differently from what I'm used to in this forum software's version of BBCode.  It should work now, though.

Offline CoyoteTheClever

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #34 on: February 09, 2011, 04:19:05 PM »
From what I understand, the leveling happens to -you- rather than your character, and your character takes on that level and when it dies, your next one takes on the level, which seems kind of weird to me, though it is understandable in combating the hardcore stigma of permadeath. But the weirdness is that it is kind of like being possessed by a ghost or something and then becoming super competent.

Its just my opinion, but it would seem less weird (IE, more in line with the theme of the game) if individual character leveling was individual, but your overall level was the level of the towns you've controlled and developed, and thus, the technology and training centers those within them have. So like, if you develop the crafting skills, or commission a certain kind of training building that brings everyone's level up to 5 or 10 or whatever, or get access to your town for a certain kind of resource, your character would be more well-equipped when you pop into them after an old one dies, but it wouldn't be like you were possessing them with your own level. It seems to me it'd strike a balance between permadeath being too punishing and not punishing enough, as well as tie the game more closely within its theme. Though I'd have to play the game obviously to see if that was true or not :D

Offline x4000

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #35 on: February 09, 2011, 04:21:24 PM »
It's actually global for all your NPCs, and all the players on the server, to make it less odd.
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Offline CoyoteTheClever

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #36 on: February 09, 2011, 04:51:41 PM »
It's actually global for all your NPCs, and all the players on the server, to make it less odd.

In some ways that is weirder, in the sense that character A killing a werewolf and gaining a level has nothing to do with NPC B gaining a level, but they both gain it from the act :D. In some ways it makes sense though, because the leveling system seems to just be representing a time progression where your NPCs get stronger as you do stuff. I guess I'll really just have to see it in action in the Alpha to see how it actually works out.

Offline x4000

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #37 on: February 09, 2011, 04:53:45 PM »
Yep, it's about the time progression, and an overall indication of how well your recovering civilization is doing as a whole.  We thought about calling it a "civilization level," but that seemed too foreign.
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Offline CoyoteTheClever

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #38 on: February 09, 2011, 05:01:14 PM »
Yep, it's about the time progression, and an overall indication of how well your recovering civilization is doing as a whole.  We thought about calling it a "civilization level," but that seemed too foreign.

In all honesty, I think calling it a civilization level is actually more intuitive than foreign :D

Offline syndicatedragon

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #39 on: February 10, 2011, 02:11:55 PM »
If the player and world level only go up, is there any concept of replay? Is there a end to the game, a final objective?

Offline x4000

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #40 on: February 10, 2011, 02:44:14 PM »
If the player and world level only go up, is there any concept of replay? Is there a end to the game, a final objective?

Check out the interviews and the AVWW page for a lot more info about that.  It's hard to explain briefly, and it's been gone into in great depth other places. But the idea is that you should never have to start over, and the game never ends.  You might complete one adventure and save one part of the world, but there's always more to do.  You can start over in a fresh world if you really want, but there's no incentive to do so and hopefully most players only start one world even if they play the game for years and years heavily.
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Offline snrub_guy

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #41 on: February 10, 2011, 04:00:15 PM »
I'll be interested to see if that's true. I know a lot of the people around here suffer from chronic restartitis. I'll admit, I do see myself restarting to get rid of all the settlements or whatever other effects I've had on the world. I tend to do that sort of thing quite a lot. But like I said, I'll be interested to see if you have cured it.

Offline x4000

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #42 on: February 10, 2011, 04:26:49 PM »
I don't understand why you'd do that, though -- why do you want your settlements gone?  If you're tired of them, just go somewhere else in the world.  You can do whatever you like, I just don't understand the motivation.
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Offline Zhaine

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #43 on: February 10, 2011, 04:44:52 PM »
There's some little borderline OCD thing about wiping the slate clean if you didn't do things right the first time. I do this all the time with, say, Civ or AI War, where there's a point and it's actually logical to get the best possible start. But I've also caught myself doing it when there's not much of a point. . . It remains to be seen if I will with AVWW, though I'm going to make an effort not to :p

Offline CoyoteTheClever

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Re: How will leveling work?
« Reply #44 on: February 10, 2011, 05:02:40 PM »
I don't understand why you'd do that, though -- why do you want your settlements gone?  If you're tired of them, just go somewhere else in the world.  You can do whatever you like, I just don't understand the motivation.

That's an interesting question. One idea between wiping the slate clean is the aspect of self-imposed challenge. You might say to yourself, this time I won't use that overpowered weapon or strategy. Another idea is that by starting a clean slate, you can see how different your experience would have been than it was othertimes, ie, saying this time you'll see what the early game would be like if you found different magic than the one you used. The early game comes with it certain limitations because you haven't equipped your character or built up your settlements, but limitations aren't always a bad thing. And also, think of what happens when you finally have all the toys to play with in AI wars. You've captured your fabricators, advanced factories and advanced research stations and mined all your planets for knowledge and have all these toys, so what's your instinct then but to go on and take the AI home bases? You aren't really left with anything but that epic confrontation. I think it can be potentially frustrating to having none of those limitations but no end game in sight either. What would happen to AI war if you had every toy available to you and everything unlocked, but instead of a core planet to unlock, you were given infinite planets to take over? But this is probably an apples and oranges comparison.

One question I have though, even if it is only slightly related, is as a developer, isn't making every savestate backwards compatible really really hard? And what if you decided to integrate an expansion into the game?