Thoughts on game systems.

What would you like to see in CoX project ?
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Post by Merlynn » Wed Jun 07, 2006 11:38 pm

Ok,so here's a problem we're going to have to address some time. What makes a fair and balenced system? It's all over the main CoH forums and frankly,it's going to end up a point of debate here too. I've already offered up one idea on how to handle it a long while ago. Might have to look for it. In my recent "Wouldn't it be great if" thread,I proposed a further idea on how to offer complete costumization of powers. To kick this thread off,I'm going to offer up more ideas on these 2 ideas and I hope to hear some feedback and your own ideas.

System 1: Power sets: This system takes the current CoH version and offers up all power sets to all Archtypes. The differences in the ATs wil be made with various bonuses and stats. (see old post for details) I feel this is a fairly balenced idea that,with some tweaking,would probably come up as more balenced than what CoH is currently using while also opening up more creativity to players.

Case for (as seen on CoH forums): Allows players to better follow a "theme" without having to choose an archtype unsuited to their play style. Also allows players to choose to maximize their strengths or midigate their weaknesses. Would also be the easiest way to bring a wider selection of powers to players without major recoding.

Case against: Still uses restrictive Power Sets to define the characters. Needs tweaking to avoid abuse.

New ideas: Set up so you can choose the first 4 powers of a power set as a power pool. For example,I can make a katana/devices scrapper and then choose the first 4 powers of Assault Rifle as a Power Pool. It'd count as a Power Pool selection and all powers would recieve a 40% power reduction. So if a Blaster with AR as a primary has a Slug power that does 100 points of damage,my scrapper with the same power would first have it reduced to 75% then take off a further 40%. So 100-25=75-31=44. So a Blaster with AR as primary would get 100 points of damage per use while my scrapper would only get 44. So it's hardly game breaking. Even a Blaster with AR as a Power Pool would still get 60 per use. What do you guys think?

System 2: Make your own powers: Player make their own powers and abilities. Powers are "created" by choosing what the powers do (healing,damage,buffing),how much they do (how much damage/healing,how powerful the pet spawned),area of effect and targetting (free target,single target,AoE),range (melee,ranged,how long a range),animations,effects,projectile animation,impact effects,weaknesses (friendly fire,self-stun,self-damage),and so on. The balancing factor is that the powers cost points gained from leveling. If you don't have the points,you can't buy the power. The players will have a chance to use a "danger room" to try out the new power to see if it does what it's supposed to. All powers come with 1 enhancement slot and more can be bought with points up to a total of 6. Once a power is perchased,it can't be altered without a respec.

Case for: Maximum customization for all aspects of character creation offering virtually unlimited possibilities and combinations. System is ultimatly self-balencing as any character can have any power so no player is left out.

Case against: Very easily abused. Will require nearly constant tweaking to keep back "uber powers". Uber powers being any power disproportionally powerful compared to a character's level/cost or that acts as an automatic "I win" button in PvP. Will also take a very long time for initial coding.

So there's my thoughts on it. Discuss!

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Post by Edar » Thu Jun 08, 2006 8:02 pm

tooo long to read, hehe just playin. i like all of those ideas, anything different and cool would b good, but its not up to me or any of us, only to devs.

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Post by nemerle » Thu Jun 08, 2006 8:29 pm

Hi, I'm afraid that this post will be a bit shortish.
System 1: It just 'might' be possible to implement. Although I wouldn't like to be a GM being bombarded by requests for free respecs, just because someone took some strange, and 'unworkable' combination of power sets.
System 2: I've been thinking about something similar, with players defining effects of their powers either in extremely simplified scripting language, or just by fiddling with various sliders (vide Freedom Force's hero creator). But sadly it won't happen, and the reason for that is very simple, we are not touching the Client, and writing system 2 properly would require some professional level design/balancing in addition to extending CoX functionality. Some day, if our team has more then two devs (like ten to twenty), we might entertain such notions as writing our very own client. Building upon, and extending CoX goodness, but as the things stand it's bordering on sheer folly to even start considering such undertakings.

Hmm I guess it wasn't that shortish after all :)
"Ich was in one sumere dale,
in one suthe diyhele hale,
iherde ich holde grete tale
an hule and one niyhtingale."

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Post by Merlynn » Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:29 pm

Well,at least someone thinks it's a good idea. I've posted it 3 times and never got a dev response over at CoH. Just now,cause of the free weekend,I posted it again. Only response I got was about my cursing. Apparently,they're surprised someone who feels ripped off would be angry with them. And,of course,they used that as an excuse to ignore me and delete my post. You hand 'em the keys to the kingdom and they throw 'em in the moat and bitch about how it didn't open the door. It's sad.

I'm also glad I'm not the only one who thought Freedom Force rocked.

As for the GM thing,well,if a combination is "unworkable",you're not going to get far with it. So anyone under level 10 could just as well go and make a new character. The only way to make it to level 20 is if the combination does work. So if it does work,there's no need to respec. However,to fix the problem,I say we allow free respecs for a while so people can play around with different powers and stuff. After all,we're playing to have fun,right? ;)

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Post by malign » Fri Jun 09, 2006 12:31 am

I really like nemerle's "system 2" idea. It would be extremely neat to make an extension to the existing CoH/CoV protocol. But it would be quite an undertaking. Hopefully, it can be feasible somewhere down the road.

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Post by Merlynn » Fri Jun 09, 2006 2:40 am

Actually,technically,it's Irrational Games' idea. Me and Nemerle just put it up here. If you haven't played Freedom Force or it's sequel,you really should. The character editor,at least as far as powers go,is light years ahead of anything on CoH. I daresay the combination of the CoH model editor and the FF power editor would very well be the ultimate superhero game.

I'd imagine we'd end up going through system 1 before we get around to system 2. Realistically,I see development going through getting everything running like the official servers,then peeling back the nerfs,then System 1. So that way you'd probably have a good grasp of the system by then. After some messing around there,maybe system 2.

Of course,as I said before,after all that work,it'd probably be just as easy to code your own game. Plus,those bastards at CoH couldn't steal your work on some legal technicality. I wouldn't put it past them.

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Post by malign » Fri Jun 09, 2006 5:26 am

Extending the CoX protocol wouldn't be their idea. =)
If we were to proceed with such a project, various elements from other games may see their way into the product, but it would be our own implementation of said ideas.
There would obviously be some differences.

I do own Freedom Force. I did not like the perspective camera viewpoint in the game. I did like the destructible terrain, however. I also would not go as far to say the character editor is "light years" ahead of CoH or CoV. The only thing I thought was decent in it was the positive/negative attributes you could assign to your character. It would be nice for CoH/CoV to implement this. But, on a side note: I do not feel this was intended with the design of CoH/CoV. Everyone has a concept that _ALL_ MMOs should have elements of D&D(tm) in them. Like spells, attributes, +X <insert item here of effect>, dragons, fairies, gnomes, etcetera. CoH and CoV are very different games. That's what makes them special.

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