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Game News Torment Kickstarter Update #39: Adam Heine Explains Effort

Discussion in 'RPG Codex News & Content Comments' started by Infinitron, Feb 26, 2015.

  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
    Who says it is?

    It doesn't actually have to be a "second chance". It's just being told ahead of time how many effort points you need to commit to succeed, after a base roll. That base roll doesn't actually have to constitute a "first attempt" at succeeding at the check.
     
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  2. Athelas Arcane

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    A bunch of people, including obviously the designers of this game.

    How else would it be conveyed? Your character has to have a way to know they failed or are about to fail. They can't just show you the roll out of context. And my point about it largely doing away with the unpredictability that was the whole reason for having random outcomes still stands.
     
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  3. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Why not?

    I can probably think of some ways to naturally display that kind of thing, though.
     
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  4. 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
    System 1:
    You fight a battle. After the battle is over, you discover you lost N hit points. You can reload, but unless N is really fucking huge, you probably won't. A victory is a victory.

    System 2:
    Before you start the battle, you get to select how many hit points you will lose in it. Depending on how many hit points you commit, your chance of winning the battle increases. Result: You're probably going to try reloading a few times to commit as few hit points as possible and still win.

    There is an extenuating factor for the second system, though. Having a good indication for the expected difficulty of a challenge means you'll eventually zero in on the "right" number of effort points you should commit to any given challenge to have a decent chance of winning without having to save-scum too much. Though yeah, at that point, why does it really have to be random at all.
     
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  5. hiver Guest

    hiver
    Think about the target audience man!

    On a bright side, at least we will be able to turn those off.

    They scrapped time limits too.

    Actually made them so they trigger only if the player decides to rest, which is basically saying there is no time limits at all anymore.
     
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  6. Jaedar Arcane Patron

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    Unless the player is forced to rest because they can't accomplish anything any more, due to no effort remaining.
     
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  7. hiver Guest

    hiver
    One would hope, but until i see an actual example of that im not buying it for a second.
     
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  8. tuluse Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    No it changes the mechanic because the player can make informed decisions.

    Spending 3 points to succeed at a task vs spending 3 points to have an 80% chance to succeed are very different.

    Quick edit:
    In the first case the player would only spend points on successes. So it would require different balance. While in the second you could easily spend points and still fail. That could lead to feelings of being screwed.
     
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  9. himmy Arcane

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    Make loading screen absurdly long, solve save-scumming problem.

    They're using Unity, more than halfway there already.

    :troll:
     
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  10. Crescent Hawk Arbiter

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    I think videogames should just use feats. if you have it, you pass the test if you dont it means you choose something else. Nevertheless I will hapilly save scum my way if its necessary. Who never did it in Mount and Bade? More concerned about the combat and story.
     
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  11. Transfiguring Roar Arcane Patron

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    Is anyone else thinking whether or not the effort points thing is going to be good or shit will be all about how it's employed/executed in game?

    What if the PC is in a situation where there are two options that require the same stat/effort points to make easier to pass, but the PC can only choose one of the options?
     
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  12. Tigranes Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    I don't know, man. Ideas that might be good or shit depending on execution? You're blowing my mind.
     
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  13. Transfiguring Roar Arcane Patron

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    Seems like some are so caught up on the mechanic itself.

    What about the example I gave?
     
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  14. Tigranes Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    I don't understand the sentence. Are you saying I face obstacle X, I can do A or B to overcome it, and you could use 5 Effort on either to make it easier? What's the problem?
     
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  15. Transfiguring Roar Arcane Patron

    Transfiguring Roar
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    Ok, close.

    What if the situation were there are two people in need of medical attention. Helping one will mean the other will die (C&C), and, more importantly, in regards to effort points you've used that effort points pool up, and there will be more checks requiring that effort pool shortly after and no chance to rest to regen the effort points prior to the following skill checks?

    Wouldn't forcing the player to use effort points from a certain pool make the 'effort slider' more meaningful over several situations?
     
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  16. Transfiguring Roar Arcane Patron

    Transfiguring Roar
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    I'm doing a bad job of trying to explain what I was thinking.

    Let me put it this way - if you can't rest wherever and whenever to regen effort points, and between resting points there are enough options to easily exhaust effort points without being able to use them to pass every check, doesn't that make the effort system more meaningful provided all checks are important?
     
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  17. Sensuki Arcane Cuck

    Sensuki
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    Codex 2014 Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
    It works fine in The Banner Saga, actually.

    Adam Heine, you've played The Banner Saga right? I like how they handled adding Willpower to attacks, it was just a simple button click, a slider might involve more clicks - which isn't really a good thing.
     
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  18. Adam Heine Arcane Developer

    Adam Heine
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    I'm kind of in love with Banner Saga, yes. It was that game, in particular, that made me think requiring a "confirm" for an attack could work without being annoying (in turn-based, at least -- I'd never have tried something like this in a twitch combat system, autopause or not). With Banner Saga, I never once was annoyed with, or even noticed, being required to click twice (and there were a few misclicks where I was grateful for it!).

    In general, if you're not applying Effort (or applying whatever Effort you get for free because of Edge), you click once to choose what you do (default attack, secondary weapon, class ability, etc) and once again to confirm default Effort -- pretty much exactly like Banner Saga, but with the additional option of free Effort/Willpower depending on your character build. If you want to apply additional Effort, you can drag the slider, click the slider (I think; we're still fiddling with the UI), use hot keys, or even use the mousewheel before confirming the attack.

    One of the main reasons we did it this way is because the Numenera system is something most players are unfamiliar with. Effort is such a key part of that system that we wanted to make sure it was right in front of players. When Numenera becomes as well-known as D&D mechanics, then maybe we can hide it ;).

    We may implement a game option to turn off the "confirm" -- possibly requiring the player to right-click or something to apply Effort to an attack -- but that will require some extra design work and so is a lower priority than getting the default UI-and-options working and fun. When that's done, then we can talk about advanced options :).
     
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  19. Sensuki Arcane Cuck

    Sensuki
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    Codex 2014 Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
    I prefer skeuomorphic UIs, but I agree that The Banner Saga has good UI design. The only case where I get kind of annoyed is I mis-aim the whirlwind attack ability one of the Varls has and often hit my own guys and have to reload. However I think when you mouse over the square you're going to target it does actually make the additional square it's going to hit blink, I probably just don't notice it. Other than that I have no issues interacting with the game.

    Made a semi-quasi-not quite related video on the game earlier, will link it in a sec.

    What's the highest level of effort? Because I think The Banner Saga tops out at 5 extra willpower(?) which works fine as dots, rather than a slider. Going by the table I assume it's higher.
     
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  20. Adam Heine Arcane Developer

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    The most Effort you can apply is six, so pretty close.

    Re: skeuomorphic UI. We're trying for a block UI option on all our UIs (the simplest version being all of our UI elements slotted into a pretty frame). The conversation UI is already a block UI (with no option for a non-block version, because Torment). I feel fairly confident a block UI option will look good in Exploration, but the Crisis UI has a lot more elements involved. As in my previous response, we're going to get the Crisis UI working and fun first, then we'll worry about a skeuomorphic version. But we are seriously considering it as an option.
     
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  21. Sensuki Arcane Cuck

    Sensuki
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    Codex 2014 Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong A Beautifully Desolate Campaign
    It's not a big deal. I'll be giving my feedback on that if any of the alpha tests involve the Main HUD. People here will probably just appreciate if elements are merely grounded into the gameworld/encased in something that looks like it's made from the world.

    BTW here's that video:

     
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  22. MicoSelva Prestigious Gentleman Don't call Abigail Patron

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    Codex 2012 Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Divinity: Original Sin 2 Bubbles In Memoria A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    I think it would be great if the exploration UI was modest but expanded when a crisis stars (optionally with an animation?), and the-crisis specific elements were shown on the expanded part, but I do not know if this would work in practice as well as it sounds in my head.
     
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  23. hiver Guest

    hiver
    Adam Heine

    It would be nice if you treated the Ui as a cypher or some sort of numenera with different forms and parts the become active only when needed.

    No problem with making a few clicks at all for me, but if possible.... try to make it so that once i select how much effort i spend on one thing, that decision remains locked to it for next turns so i dont have to repeat the same process every time my turn comes up.
    Unless i want to change it to something else - which then becomes automatic "repetitive loop" i dont need to repeat over and over for every turn.
     
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  24. Zeronet Learned

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    I'm glad InXile have developed a sense of art direction. The area looks interesting and cool even unfinished.
     
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  25. darkpatriot Arcane

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    Ditch the random roll for skill checks outside of combat. That stuff works in tabletop roleplaying but it has already been shown to not work well in CRPGs. People are going to save scum. I certainly will. I won't be happy about it and it will cause me to enjoy the game less, but I will. If I spend enough effort to have an 80% chance of succeeding, especially if it cost me a large chunk of my available effort to get that 80%, you bet I am going to save scum if that check fails. I am gonna feel like it is bullshit that I failed the roll in the first place after having expended so much of a limited resource. Once that way of thinking sets in it is an easy jot down a slippery slope to justify save scumming in lesser situations.

    The random rolling for skill checks will cause me to enjoy the game less and as a result they will make the game worse. Trying to implement anti-savescum mechanics to prevent, limit, punish, or inconvenience players for savescumming is just wasting time and unnecessarily telling players how it is or is not acceptable to play the game. Those measures will cause players to enjoy the game even less.

    Instead, for any given task you should be told how much effort you have to spend to succeed, assuming you need effort to succeed, and then it is your decision if succeeding at that is worth spending that effort to you. Of course that is assuming that resting is controlled enough and that there are enough skill checks between rests to even make it a meaningful choice. If that is messed up and it is too easy to replenish effort then it doesn't even matter.

    The way it works now it sounds like passing any check you want is never more than a save scum, or a rest, away. That makes the game sound much less fun and interesting.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2015
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