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Game News Project Eternity Kickstarter Update #24: Life and Death in the Dyrwood, CD Soundtrack

Discussion in 'News & Content Feedback' started by Crooked Bee, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. Crooked Bee (no longer) a wide-wandering bee Patron

    Crooked Bee
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    Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire MCA Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Tags: J.E. Sawyer; Obsidian Entertainment; Pillars of Eternity

    Update #24 to Obsidian's Project Eternity only announces one new goodie - a physical audio CD of the game's soundtrack as a $20 add-on - while the rest of it focuses on lore. Have a snippet:

    Life and Death in the Dyrwood

    For today's update, I was supposed to do a lore update, but I decided that I wanted to talk about a specific subject and how lore and mechanics tie into that subject. Today's subjects are LIFE AND DEATH. Project Eternity is a fantasy RPG inspired by several A/D&D-based settings in which death is, for those with means, a temporary setback (for the Nameless One, it's even less problematic). The priests of the Forgotten Realms run around with boatloads of cure x wounds spells, the ability to banish disease, and even the power to bring the dead back to life.

    In Project Eternity, prospects are not so bright. And when death comes, some try to stay, some choose to go, but most people believe that once they make the trip to the other side, there is only one way back: to begin a new life.

    Common Mortality
    Project Eternity's world is one with limited medicine and medical understanding. Unlike many fantasy settings, there is very little access to curative magic. Remedies for health problems often have only a palliative or placebo effect at best, owing their continued use more to folk beliefs and tradition than any basis in scientific methodology. Though soul-based magic has helped the great exploring cultures from suffering massive pandemics and has helped some individuals overcome illness over the long-term, there is no quick magical "cure" for disease or illness. Most people go through life and death in the ordinary way -- unless they put themselves in harm's way, that is.

    Stamina and Health
    In Project Eternity's combat, players need to be concerned with two elements of a character's vitality: Stamina and Health. The majority of damage a character takes is subtracted from his or her Stamina. Stamina represents how much general abuse a character can take before falling unconscious. Characters lose it quickly and regain it relatively rapidly, even without assistance. Soul-based abilities are able to help replenish or regenerate Stamina and are often used on the battlefield to turn the tide of combat. If a character hits 0 Stamina, he or she is knocked out. Intervention from another character can bring an unconscious character back into a fight.

    For players, the Health of their party members is a tether that makes them consider how far they are willing to venture from a safe resting spot. Though Health is typically lost at a lower rate, when the PC or a companion hits 0 Health, he or she is maimed (in standard play) or killed (in Expert mode or as an option in standard play). Magic may help mitigate damage to Health and slow the tide, but once characters have died (in Expert mode), there is no known magic that can bring them back.​

    To read the rest - including stuff about enslaving nations with necromancy - click here.
     
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  2. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    HOLY SHIT.

    I love the part where it says "there is no magic that can bring them back".
    I'd have never expected that much from Obsidian. I hope this stays.
     
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  3. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    A stamina bar would allow you to combine short-term cooldowns for minor abilities (like, uh, Knockdown or relatively low-level spells that aren't very useful anymore, but can still help) with attrition. It basically solves the attrition vs fresh start every fight problem because it provides a limit to your cooldowns or the damage you can take. It'll lead to harder, more satisfying encounters if implemented right. You still have attrition: health. Ideally, in such a system, spells would start to cost health once you're out of stamina, or simply not function at all.

    But there's a chance for the horror scenario if the numbers are tweaked the wrong, I can admit as much.
     
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  4. Mrowak Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Mrowak
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    It depends how they are going to work around the concept. Too early to tell. I hope that being pincushioned with arrows will not just mean you lost all your stamina but 30 seconds later you are all ready to go.

    I like the health/stamina concept in Betrayal at Krondor, although there it was Health that regenerated (if you rested in the wilds) and Stamina did only if you rested in inns or used potions or magic. The fun part is, losing health meant heavy penalities to your skillchecks.

    Also casting spells meant sacrificing your health and/or stamina. There was actually one funny spell that either killed everyone on the battlefield or knocked out you mage if his health/stamina went dry before enemy HP did.
     
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  5. Uh oh.

    Stamina is your SHIELD for health. It is health except just on regen. You can't be harmed without depleting stamina first.
     
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  6. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    No. This solves everything.

    The problem of attrition vs full spell load out every battle, the planning component... it solves everything. This system works. It worked in Darklands, it worked in Dark Souls (and don't tell me they aren't blatantly lifting ideas from that game, because they are and I can feel it in most updates.) and it'll work here as well, provided the battles are tuned around it.

    This is fucking brilliant; I'd never have expected them to use something that old-school. Hopefully you can't cast spells when you're out of stamina. Or maybe you can and it takes away permanent health. Maybe you can have an option to have stamina regen be affected by current health. There's so many possibilities with this. I'm ecstatic.
     
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  7. FeelTheRads Arcane Patron

    FeelTheRads
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    Wasn't it stamina that affected the skills?
     
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  8. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    Sorry, slamming out posts as quickly as I can here.

    No, they wrote that attacks deplete Stamina AND Health, but more Stamina than Health. So it's not like a shield, more like a damper. I do understand your concern, BUT! They also wrote that if you reach 0 Stamina you fall unconscious and are effectively helpless. So if you tried to use it like a shield you'd quickly lose Health as well as entire battles because your tank would keep falling unconscious and become easy prey.
     
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  9. Mrowak Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Mrowak
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    No, stamina was the first "shield". When you lost that you started losing health which also meant skill penalties. Now we can only hope they won't fuck the idea up.
     
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  10. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    Also, I cannot stress how important this is, permanent death in an RPG in 2012/14. You have absolutely no idea how big of a deal that is to me. That's brass balls right there.
     
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  11. Mrowak Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Mrowak
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    Indeed, that's a major deal breaker. This totally shifts the focus of battles and automatically forces more though-out encounter design. I hope they won't abandon this concept and actually create gameplay around it.
     
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  12. Mrowak Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Mrowak
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    Project: Eternity
    [​IMG]

    Conjecture. No grounds for that.
     
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  13. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    Let me try a different approach.

    1) Say of them what you will, Obsidian always did a pretty good job in making game mechanics part of the narrative in some way or another.
    2) They're set on making a fairly low-healing world where death is common, even going so far as to offer perma-death for expert mode as well as comparing in to the D&D world where healing is common.

    If we take those two pieces of information it's obvious to me they'd avoid putting in a forever spammable stamina-healing spell because it'd undermine the entire construct of narrative and mechanics. If they always tie together the world with the gameplay mechanics, why betray them? That's not their style, not their signature.

    You can, of course, counter this by saying "Well, yeah, but they also made the encounters in KOTOR 2 and NWN 2 OC." and I'd have little to reply, but I have a feeling that to them, mechanics are a slave to the story and would thus focus on making it very very hard to heal up easily, due to everything that has been said so far. Now, of course there's no way to tell until we know more, but the same should temper everything you say.
     
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  14. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    BaK confirmed for popamole. HOLY SHIT! Let me purge that unclean abomination from my sacred shelf of boxed old RPGs at once.
     
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  15. That is not regen health you dolt.
     
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  16. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    No, but it regenerates Stamina, the SAME THING you just criticized in PE. BaK is turn-based, so it doesn't happen automatically, but where's the difference in spending a turn to regen or spending time to regen? Either way you'll be hit with swords or spells while doing it.
     
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  17. J_C One Bit Studio Patron Developer Sad Loser

    J_C
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    Then what is it? :lol: Please try to make up some kind of excuse!
     
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  18. Dorateen Arcane

    Dorateen
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    So Stamina becomes the new Hit Points in a "fall below 0 means incapacitated" system, and the Health meter is represents the negative hitpoints until death.

    Whatever works.
     
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  19. Pretty good job? They did a mediocre to bad job. Except in SOZ the NWN2 games ignored most of your skills.

    In which case you should be skeptical about all this just as I am. Are you?
     
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  20. FeelTheRads Arcane Patron

    FeelTheRads
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    Not if in PE it will regenerate all the time, no matter what you do.

    Yeah, pretty much. Depends how and how fast you'll regenerate the health.. I mean stamina.
     
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  21. Dude you have never played the game. That game is TB. It requires spending a turn to do it. It is a stamina potion button for intents and purposes,
     
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  22. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    I'll be when I read something that makes me a skeptical. There have been a few things (cooldowns) but they have been alleviated already due to the introduction of attrition mechanics (this update).

    I can see why you'd be skeptical- but then, those games didn't have Tim Cain, who is, I feel, quite passionate about getting the mechanics "right". I feel this update is a good indicator that they are giving serious thought to encounter design this time around - an area that may well be their weakest.

    And about game mechanics as part of the narrative-
    NWN 2 (OC) is using your skills like most D&D games. I'm not sure what you mean. But that's not what I meant. I meant making the mechanics part of the story, of the villain's ambitions, of the world. Such as how in PS:T, Avellone makes a lot of planar mechanics from the source-books part of the story. Or how in KOTOR 2, the experience system, the levelling up system and the influence system are all part of the actual world, not just mechanical abstractions- Kreia even outright tells you this in her iconic speech with the jedi masters.

    That's what I meant. Making mechanics not just an abstraction, but an actual, real thing inside the context of the story.
     
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  23. The only skills checked in NWN2 OC are talk skills. Spellcraft, heal and Spot are checked in a couple of irrelevant places.
     
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  24. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    Doesn't matter. So you are regenerating Stamina as you get hit- there's no way you regenerate more than the damage you're taking. It's the exact same thing as the button in BaK because you have to risk taking hits when you spend a turn to rest in BaK. Ideally in PE, attacking, moving, getting hit would all cost Stamina and then there'd be no difference anymore, at least in as much as real time vs turn based are concerned.
     
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  25. Jasede Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron Sad Loser

    Jasede
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    I didn't mean that; but yes, that's true. But the OC is generally considered terrible for all intents and purposes and while I can find some good parts in it (with a magnifying glass) I can't outright deny it either.
     
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