Absolutely. I still think you all are on to something with K&H. This could really be an amazing world of continuous and varied experiences where the imagination is the only limit. I promise I will continue to check back but unfortunately for now, I am just not able to get past an hour of hitting reroll just so I don't end up with a 3 somewhere. I'm telling you, stat allocation is something to look at. TSR used it for years and Bioware also has seen great success with their D20 style games. Something to think about. Then you could go in a multitude of directions down the road in so far as alternate progression.
Posts made by Shadex
RE: Starting Stats
RE: Starting Stats
Anything done down the road is only going to make a poor early decision mildly better. You add more stats to allocate down the road it will not change the hours spent rolling stats in the beginning. Players will simply look to add those points to the good stats they will take forever to roll at creation. Give them 5 points later they will want to add those to a previous 18 making 23. They will not simply go golly, guess that 13 was OK because now I can spend all my end game points to get up to where I could have been at the start.
Questing for a reroll is not a solution either as a single reroll could easily mean worse stats than they had unless you are going to let them sit and reroll over and over like they are now until they are happy. So now we are just putting them back into the same RNG frustration they had to deal with already.
If the stats don't really matter that much to be competitive then get rid of them. If they matter enough that they do add a competitive edge then you need to put that control into the hands of the players. You have to think like a current gamer. There was a time when a bad roll on a stat could mean fun and interesting adventures around a table with your good friends but now a bad roll means hate, ridicule, and frustration in a genre of hyper-competitive min/maxing. Unfortunately that is where we are.
Now if you do want to make this game like it was long ago back in the days when it was about fun and not power leveling, or grinding the same mobs for 6 months, or being forced to have top 1% stats and gear in order to even attempt end game, (Yoshi P can go sit on a hand grenade) then you will need to take a very serious look at the stat system and make each stat count and make stats count for more than just killing mobs. But I don't think that is the direction and that is OK. To each their own. It just won't be where I spend my game time.
RE: What Rhymes with Bard?
@Trup My comment regarding Blizzard was specifically focused on their success with World of Warcraft. Believe me, I completely agree with the quality of the games they create. Having played Blizzard titles since Orcs vs Humans they are indeed very polished. Blizzards skill as a game developer is without question but so is the skill of many studios. What I feel makes them so successful is that they managed to pair with that skill one of the greatest marketing teams in history.
On the RP front, it isn't the lion's share of the playerbase true. I do feel that that can still be greatly attributed to the fact that games just don't support them or the fact that other players seem to enjoy bullying them. Remember the rude awakening Carbine had with Wildstar when they created an MMO so focused on end game raiding and dungeons that they all but left every other playstyle out in the rain. They came to find that they had built an entire game around less than 5% of their playerbase. Yes, end game raids are a good carrot and stick to keep players playing but it has dominated the market I feel because most devs don't know anything else to do.
Star Wars Galaxies in its pre-NGE era was widely successful without end game content looking more to player interaction to create the end game, much as EvE has done now. I just feel that there are many other areas of success that can be found in MMO design especially now that the pendulum is begun its swing away from the standard run instance 500 times for x item but only if you are the top 5% of players because otherwise you can't do it since we designed our boss fights that difficult. We used to game with people because we liked them and now a days we often group with people we can't stand simply because they can help us get that special uber drop.
With a K&H bard I would like to see a lot of social interaction and benefit. DEX and CHA is a solid choice making them harder to hit and better with light weapons like daggers/rapiers and ranged weapons. Songs could buff resolution as I have seen vids of some of those huge boss fights and being 'feared' was always a concern in D&D. Crowd control was a fun aspect of bards in Everquest being able to put enemies to sleep while you dealt with others or perhaps to charm an enemy so that it will fight on your side for a little while.
RE: What Rhymes with Bard?
Balancing a hybrid can be difficult. I believe the goal should always be situational value. The ability to provide a little extra in any given area when it is needed without overshadowing the primary position. RP has been a hot topic over the last almost two decades of online gaming. I do feel however that is can pay the bills. The issue with selling any product is finding the correct buyer. Trying to sell roleplay to a buyer that wants casual hack and slash is never going to work. However, selling the same hack and slash to a buyer looking for roleplay is just as dangerous. While in recent times roleplayers have been essentially forced to play in normal MMOs a large portion of that can be attributed to simply a lack of options. Roleplaying at its core is still alive and well and new editions of D&D and countless P&P games every few years is a good testament.
I have been running an online game community now for a little over 16 years and a common thing I hear from our members is that they have always wanted to roleplay but were either made fun of or never found a game where it was supported. Game developers in today’s market I believe just need to come to a single conclusion and that is that there will never be another WoW. WoW will never be another WoW. World of Warcraft was as successful as it was because Blizzard was insightful enough to see a change in societal acceptance of gaming in general. This prompted them to change/produce a game that was easy enough for the influx of traditional non-gamers while still providing enough end game challenge, goals (carrot and stick) for veteran players and longevity. Blizzard’s success was as much a result of good design as it was good timing.
We are in a different place now. No game will ever be as successful as WoW because it isn’t new anymore. The initial wave of novelty has passed and gaming has reached mainstream success and acceptance. Ronda Rousey and Vin Diesel play Wold of Warcraft and Shirley Curry, a lovely lady in her 80’s, hosts a very popular YouTube channel of her playing Skyrim. So the sooner developers accept that there will never be another 10 million subscriber game and instead concentrate on making the absolute best game they can for a particular market we as gamers and the industry as a whole will start to see the pendulum upswing again to a greater golden age of games.
Now that leaves us with the same question, what is the market of K&H? Very little has been stated that I have seen. The main site lists, “full multiplayer RPG with character advancement” but as history has taught us, an argument can be made that playing Pong means you are taking on the ‘role’ of a white line so that makes it an RPG. I personally don’t agree but there it is. I believe that there is still a strong, virtually untapped market of gamers that would like to see a strong, deep, social, roleplay release from the gaming industry. Neverwinter Nights did very well for Bioware and players have actually been clamoring for a full 3D version for years, only to be terribly unhappy with DDO. I don’t know, so much is still unknown we will have to wait and see. I can tell already that K&H is going to be a ton of fun for whatever demographic is decides to focus on. I just hope they do choose one because what we have seen over the last declining decade is that when a game tries to do it all, no one group is happy which leads to an overall ‘meh’ release.
The amusing parallel is that fact that this stems from a conversation regarding bards being ‘meh’ to some. The difference is a bard class should be meh on its own and only through their group do they truly make everyone’s lives better. A game cannot follow the same model as it will always stand alone.
I just wanted to say thank you and kudos to the art team. What a wonderful art style and a refreshing escape from either of the two default choices it seems recently dominate the world of game design. We are neither forced to wade through one more cartoon bubble world thanks to Blizzard nor roll our eyes at another plastic surgeon dream world of steroids and pole dancers. While I have described your take as being Fable like it is so much more than that. Your gritty edge coupled with slightly distorted models creates a fantastic trick of the mind where things look real but then not leaving the viewer with a sort of odd but exhilarating sense of wonder and fantasy. It reminds me a lot of Jim Henson’s best work where things look very real yet you know they aren’t and you love it for that reason.
There was another game whose art style was just absolutely superb yet fared poorly do to game mechanics. It was a FPS called Brink and K&H reminds me a fair amount. Just a visually breathtaking game that met an unfortunate end. I had long swore if I were to win the lottery and open my own studio I would hire Lauren Austin in a heartbeat. Well, that was all. Just wanted to convey my appreciation and please forward it to your art department. Just great work and I am looking forward to seeing more as the world of K&H is fleshed out.
RE: Starting Stats
Currently, I would tend to agree. Until we know what all the stats do and how they will be utilized testing them is a little moot and rolling for them during creation is kind of a waste of effort. So perhaps for now we move on to other elements. I did have another thought if perhaps the point buy system was not a winner. Many D20 titles have also utilized a stat allocation system as well where in you roll your seven stats but then you get to choose where you want them to be placed. You cannot change the number but at least you have some control over their distribution. I could see this system working as well as it retains the random roll generation and simply adds a drag and drop off the numbers from one stat card to another prior to moving on in character creation.
RE: What Rhymes with Bard?
In today’s world where most mmos are extremely two dimensional in regards to character development and player/game interaction bards have not been a very popular or really understood class. Bards were the original ultimate hybrid. Don’t have a wizard, a bard can cast some spells and may even know that obscure piece of lore from some dusty book no one has heard of. Don’t have a cleric, a bard can heal a little. Short on damage output, bards can respectfully swing a sword or notch an arrow. Traps or locks got you down, there’s a chance the bard can take care of it. People loved playing bards because they were so versatile. Then it came to their area of specialty and here is where modern game design hamstrung the bard unfortunately, they were the social interaction specialists. Whether it be their high charisma, their intimate knowledge of customs and etiquette, they were the ones that your team wanted when it came to talking with the NPCs.
Problem is now, games and from that gamers have moved so far from that they no longer see any real benefit to a bard like class. Many players hate the NPC aspect of MMOs because they don’t want to read, don’t care about any lore or story, or consider it a waste of their time. Players look for three things, can you put out more DPS than anyone else, can you take a hit from anything and not die, or can you heal enough to ensure that the first two can keep doing what they do? And now, thanks to games like FFXIV, even the tanks and healers are asked the DPS question as well. So what is missing, that jacks of all trades, the hybrids, the bards.
Now, some games and some people have seen their worth and implemented them well. I played Rift for years at launch as a bard and remember many groups complaining I wasn’t a marksman for more DPS because they didn’t need a bard. So I would switch and they would all die within a few pulls. When implemented well, and Rift along with Everquest 1 were two of the few I felt did just that, Bards can be a huge blessing to a group. What I find so ironic is that over the last 10+ years of MMOs players have looked down at hybrids while simultaneously asking for abilities for their classes that essentially make them one. The non-social gamers looking to play MMOs yet not group demand that their dedicated class has the abilities of other classes so they can solo essentially making them hybrids. They don’t want to play a bard, they just want to have the versatility of one without any of the drawbacks.
So where does or could a bard fit in K&H? Well, that will honestly depend on what the devs intend for this game. Is this going to be perhaps a more true reincarnation of classes D&D style gaming where problem solving, NPC interaction, and the fear of the unknown are going to play a major role? Then perhaps the bard will find a suitable home here. If the intention is more a casual Diablo’esque dungeon romp of slaughtering hordes of faceless minions on our journey to the boss and the promise of phat lewts? Then perhaps not, other classes can do their job with greater efficiency.
On a personal note, I hope so. I would really like to see K&H go the route of a more traditional D&D style of gaming. I remember the explosion of popularity that came with the original NWN toolkit and the multiplayer aspect. I could see K&H filling a much needed gap where players are looking for a more in depth gaming experience and less simply memorizing rotations and floor patterns in order to do the same content over and over weeks on end in hopes of that elusive purple. WoW was the gold standard for a long time but as we have seen with Legion even those gamers are finally tiring and looking for something better. I think K&H can be that.
RE: Starting Stats
@Paladine Or a Strength Tank... bloody FFXIV.
So some alternative use for stats beyond min/maxing is always a wonderful way to give players more than the simple out of the box MMO design we have seen for so long. I have not been around the game as long as some so I cannot really say what the direction the devs are hoping to take the game in down the road. It may be intended as just a simple put your quarter in session based romp with friends and that is fine and will be a lot of fun. But, I have an odd suspicion they are looking for more of an immersive big world feel. If I had to describe the feeling I get about K&H right now it would be Diablo with a coat of Fable paint giving a respectful nod to D&D and following in Skyrim's footsteps.
Quite a collection of shoes to fill but like I said, I have a good feeling. Each stat could be given all sorts of uses beyond the stereo-typical me bash bad guy good rawr. What if that STR that we love for Champions could be used to rip the door off of a treasure room in times when there isn't a rogue in the group? Now imagine a group with no champion or rogue but player with an Orc cleric that sees him as sort of a battle medic and gave him super high STR. Now maybe you can get into that treasure room still. Couldn't work all the time because rogues need to keep their niche but some obstacles could even be beyond rogues. What about a huge slab that blocks a secret corridor? Sure, the rogue spotted the opening but there is no trap to pick so hope someone can lift it.
INT for that studious wizard allows a group to decipher the odd scrap they found that contains the random lever pattern to the room trap they are in. Great but what do you do when you don't have a wizard? Enter the ranger that started his life as a noble prince, heir to a throne, well educated and versed yet abandoned his birthright for the freedom of the wilds... where have I heard that before... anyway, player gives his ranger high INT and decodes the message.
Sure, some classes will already have high scores in certain areas making them naturals in some game features but making all the stats matter beyond the bash bash dungeon crash add depth and a chance for every player to maybe be the hero when they can step up and have a unexpected talent that saves the day. I remember once back in the early days of Everquest when you had to learn languages and I had to translate between the humans and the elves in our group. I was a half-elf. I could not tell you a thing about the instance or what dropped but I remember how much fun that evening was. These are the memories that a game with more than one dimension can give their players. That is what can make them want to come back to relive what they can only get here and not in 20 other titles all doing the same thing.