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Game News Colony Ship Update #38: Combat Demo Update #5 - Quest Dialogue Sample

Discussion in 'RPG News & Content' started by Infinitron, Jun 8, 2019.

  1. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Tags: Colony Ship: A Post-Earth Role Playing Game; Iron Tower Studio; Vince D. Weller

    Coming in right before tomorrow's explosion of news from E3 is this month's Colony Ship development update, with another status report on the game's upcoming combat demo. Progress on the portraits and animations that have been holding the demo up is slow but ongoing. The update includes examples of two recently added portraits and a new pistol animation. There's also a sample of quest dialogue from the Pit, and of course the usual batch of screenshots from the arena. The new features demonstrated in the screenshots this time are poison gas grenades and feats. I'll post two of them here:

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    News from the front:

    - Progress on the portraits and animations is still slow. Meet generic combat NPC 05 and 06. The helmets and goggles reflect the in-game headgear models. Ivan finished tweaking the rifles animations, going over the pistol animations now (over 200 animations).

    - Programming and design are right on schedule, which is a lot more important as I'd rather wait for portraits and animations than for the programming tasks to be completed.

    - Scott and I are working on dialogues for the side quests; I hope to have all the quests and dialogues for the Pit ready by the end of the month. Random snippets:

    * * *

    “What can I get you?” The bartender has spotted you looking over the assortment of unlabeled, plastic gallon jugs, each with its own unappealing liquid in some shade of brown. “We got Gutwarmer, Rat Poison, High Voltage, Firewater, and Absolution. Special on the Rat Poison right now, every third round is free for as long as you're able to drink it.”

    * * *
    Three men stand silently about a portable heater, the Ship equivalent of the frontier campfire, minus the good cheer.

    “Do you have it?” the man in charge says in a voice hoarse and low. The left side of his face is disfigured with gruesome, saucer-sized scars, like vicious sucker marks. From one of these rippled craters, the angry orange light of an ocular implant is doing duty for a missing eye. You suppress a shudder thinking about the tentacle that must have delivered that kiss. Everyone’s heard the stories, of course, but you felt better telling yourself they were exaggerated.

    1. Continue.

    Chance hurriedly yanks a dusty old control module from his belt bag and passes it to Scarface. The Granger glances down at it, no more than a quick take, then tosses it to ground.

    “What’s the deal?” asks Chance, his righteous indignation more than slightly overplayed. “You wanted a tower control module, I brought you a tower control module. Now where’s my money? I got shit to do.” He cuts his eyes at you, both in a naked appeal for support and to give himself a break from looking at his mark.

    Scarface isn’t looking at Chance anymore, though. His implant is giving you a hard stare, and you’re guessing it’s not interested in your haircut. Judging by the design, it’s military hardware, already locked in and analyzing its target.

    1. “The money, like he said. Best if you don't make us ask again.”
    2. “What if I can get this module for you?”
    Two more months to go, hopefully. See the full update for the rest of the screenshots including descriptions.
     
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  2. boobio Cipher Trigger Warning

    boobio
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    Why is this game not getting more gamepress? Maybe add a transsexual to the game vd?
     
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  3. Fenix Cipher Vatnik

    Fenix
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    We all know what gather gamepress today...
     
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  4. Diggfinger Arbiter

    Diggfinger
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    Wait wuut, there is **DIaAlogue** in this game?
    That's more than I bargained for! I'm out...
    :retarded:
     
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  5. luj1 You're all shills

    luj1
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  6. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
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    Yes. As I mentioned in another thread a couple of months ago, a combat system like AoD and CSG does call for graze mechanics to differentiate between 'almost hit' rolls and 'not even close' rolls. As a bonus it also helps differentiating precise attacks and firearms such aimed shots and rifles from bursts, double- and triple-shots, SMGs, etc that have a much higher grazing chance. While grazing could be done via damage ranges if the range is wide enough, it would make damage rolls too random, which in turn would make any damage resistance random as well. In our experience, tighter ranges like 7-10 or 10-14 work best, but the min damage is too high to be considered a graze. Since graze is not a direct hit by definition, it should be handled via to-hit chance by adding a small graze range between hit and miss.

    Look at it this way: you have a 30% chance to hit. You roll in 1-30 range, you hit. You roll 31-100, you missed. It doesn't matter if you roll 31 or 99, even though 31 is a very close call and 99 is that cross-eyed gunner from Spaceballs. You can say tough luck or you can create a graze range for close rolls for half the damage. Conceptually, it's no different than a critical range, so you'd have something like 1-5 (+ modifier) critical, 6-30 hit, 31-40 graze, 41-100 miss. This design won't make "everyone a winner" but will reward close calls in a reasonable way.
     
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  7. luj1 You're all shills

    luj1
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  8. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
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    Would being grazed by enemy's fire make the player feel better as well?

    Our goal wasn't to make anyone feel better but to design a better system.
     
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  9. Murk Arcane

    Murk
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    Sounds fine to me, for whatever my opinion is worth.

    Outcomes not being binary isn't an issue -- I wonder if it will end up benefiting enemies more than the player. My thinking being that in many games you can stack your PC to be, at some point, nigh untouchable -- especially if you can control block/dodge. If this means that 95% of the time enemies miss, it's satisfying to "achieve" but not fun to actually play since many combat encounters turn into a time consuming mop up. If however it means enemies can still chip at your health, you still have some risk.

    Though all this is beside the point since actually playing it will illuminate if it's good or not.
     
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  10. Jedi Master Radek Arcane

    Jedi Master Radek
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    Why pistol needs 200 animations?
     
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  11. luj1 You're all shills

    luj1
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    Better in which way?

    Scenario A. You have three outcomes: miss, hit and critical hit.
    Scenario B. You have four outcomes: miss, graze, hit and critical hit.

    So you introduced a new outcome to make the combat more... dynamic? More interesting? I am genuinely interested sir.
     
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  12. lukaszek the determinator

    lukaszek
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    d200, each roll got different animation
     
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  13. Jedi Master Radek Arcane

    Jedi Master Radek
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    That's too sensible. And cool.
     
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  14. Fenix Cipher Vatnik

    Fenix
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    Minor cancern - too much grazes could look unrealistic.
     
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  15. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

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    Depends on the weapon and attack type. If you're using a long barrelled gun from a safe distance, you won't graze very often as your graze chance would be very low, same as a chance to score a critical, but if you unload your SMG at someone standing two steps away, you better hit something one way or another (long burst: graze +15, the best one-handed SMG has graze +30, so that +45 combined).

    You can do a lot more with 3 states (hit, graze, miss) than with 2 (hit or miss). An enemy with an SMG manages to get close and pulls a trigger. With a hit/miss setup, if he hits, you're dead or almost dead which is the same thing. If he misses completely at close range, it's nice (if you're the target) but ridiculous. Sames applies to your character; insta-killing enemies in Fallout with SMGs or Gauss rifles was fun but hardly tactical. We can tone down the damage, which is a common enough solution in other games, or give more HP so that you can take 10 full bursts and not feel a thing, or we can make such weapons less accurate (which is realistic as nobody would think that a sawed off shotgun is designed for marksmanship) when it comes to full damage but very accurate when it comes to hitting something for half damage within range.

    AoD dodgers are another example. At some point (when they reach level 8 or higher) they become very hard to hit and thus nearly untouchable; some players even ditched armor completely to maximize the dodge bonus. Reducing the skill bonus to increase the enemy's THC didn't work (made the dodgers too easy to hit for full damage and thus too easy to kill). That's when I started thinking that we needed a death by a thousand cuts for the dodgers, but it was too late to change the mechanics and rebalance all the fights.
     
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  16. luj1 You're all shills

    luj1
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    Agreed, but as far as I can tell grazing isn't exclusive to SMGs and shotguns. It should occur with all ranged weapons, correct?
     
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  17. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
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    Weapons' graze ranges from 0 to 30 (for the record only one weapon has graze 30 and it's an equivalent of a unique), so 0-25 would be more accurate. I'd say that 40% of weapons have no graze modifiers at all. Attacks' graze for ranged weapons is 0 to 15 and some attacks limit it to 5, so even if you have a fancy SMG with graze 25, using it for aimed attacks (instead of spray & pray) will reduce graze to 5. In other words it won't be a graze fiesta where every character hits every turn. If you look at the screens I posted, there are quite a few misses there and not that many grazes.
     
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  18. Gay-Lussac Arcane

    Gay-Lussac
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    I loved AoD, day 1 purchase :)
     
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  19. Politician Lurker King

    Politician
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    Think in terms of Age of Decadence. We had fast attacks, normal attacks, and power attacks. Did fast attacks benefit enemies more than the player? No. Graze hits are fast attacks by another name. The name sounds cooler and more conceptually accurate.
     
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  20. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
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    Most of these are animation blending, so it's not 200 ways to shoot a pistol.
     
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  21. sorinmask Just like Yves, I chase tales. Patron

    sorinmask
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    Why not? :P

    Jokes aside: I appreciate your updates. Always good stuff.
     
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  22. Murk Arcane

    Murk
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    I was thinking generally, and particularly since I've been playing Battle Brothers a lot recently what my lone wolf run was like where the overwhelming majority of enemies have a 5% chance to hit me, meaning that I was mostly untouched until they got a lucky crit -- not too dissimilar to fighting kobolds in BG1 in the early game.

    I was under the impression Colony Ship's combat would be sufficiently different than AoD's.
     
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  23. Alpharius Educated

    Alpharius
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    :bro: Grazes seems like a sensible solution. I guess one could achive the same with smg, and shotgun shots being treated like lots of individual low damage shots but then dodgers would still either receive next to no damage, if DR is applied per shot, or make heavy armor + low dodge largely equivalent with light armor + high dodge if DR is applied to sum of damage.
     
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  24. luj1 You're all shills

    luj1
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    I was under the impression you were cluttering your systems and not gaining much but you made a good case, thanks.
     
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  25. Bester Arcane Patron Vatnik

    Bester
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    Another post I have to make that will reap a harvest of "retarded" for criticizing.

    Here's how it currently is:
    Here's how it should be:
    Doesn't it look better?

    - Cut out adverbs: "silently", "hurriedly", "in a voice hoarse and low" (which is just another way of doing an adverb-y dialogue attribution, e.g. "rasped" or "grated")
    - Cut out cliché adjectives: "gruesome scar".
    - Cut out unimportant descriptions. The more it's important, the more description it can have. Right now too much text is devoted to the history of this guy loosing his eye. Unless it's the main antagonist in the game, it has to go.
    - Too much of "who looks at whom". I changed it a bit.
    - I left the part about the "portable heater", because I don't know how the game is going to look. But do cut out location descriptions if the game already shows it to you, if there's ambient sounds, right lighting, some background music. I don't need the mood to be spelled out for me, I want you to make me feel it.

    What he says absolutely sets the mood and lets my imagination take over, nothing else here is necessary.

    "Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away" Antoine de Saint-Exupery

    Don't go the purple prose road of PoE.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019 at 7:22 AM
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