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You shalt never have another pointless death.


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#1 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 11:03 AM

If everything in a story-based game was really there for a reason, wouldn't it be interesting if the player's character never died. INstead the story would just be advanced. For instance, if the player were to try and steal an NPC's belongings and gets caught. Then the NPC would start fighting w/ the player. Then the player gets hurt badly enough to collapse. The guards drag the player into jail or throw the player outside the town and banish him. The player then has to deal with these situations and mend his wounds when he comes to or whatever else. There still is a consequence to the player's theft, but just not an ending to the game. The point is, instead of death the story would change because of the player's actions. The only time player death would occur is when it is a profound part of the story. How damn interesting is death (unless it does have a greater significance like being a martyr or something)? The player just either reloads a saved game or restarts, but if in place of death, a major change in the flow of the game's plot happens it's much more interesting. ""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator Nazrix, the yet-to-be-determined-cool half-liberitarian half-not-nihilistic-anymore-but-plain-confused messiah Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself. Edited by - Nazrix on 10/19/00 5:07:25 PM

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#2 Wavinator   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1825

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 11:46 AM

I like this idea, and would love to see an alternative to repeat and die/reload gameplay. The one advantage death does give you, though, is that visceral, motivating fear that many other types of loss can''t match. The fear you have of falling as you navigate a canyon, or fight a horde of monsters, or hear the collapse of a building around you; these are all the fear of death.

You will run into a problem in terms of realism in some situations. Realistically, the dragon or serial killer or whatever you''re facing likely would not keep you alive, and so the fear of facing your foe would probably be somewhat diminished.

But those issues aside, I think it''s an awesome approach. I think if you structure the emotional and motivational meaning of your world correctly, there are many worse than dying that don''t necessarily end the game.

Just a last minute thought, though: Death also lets you know when you''ve failed, so you''ll have to look at what failure means in the game. What I mean is that death puts you out of your misery, gets it over with so you can do better. Just a thought

--------------------
Just waiting for the mothership...

#3 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:08 PM

quote:
Original post by Wavinator

I like this idea, and would love to see an alternative to repeat and die/reload gameplay. The one advantage death does give you, though, is that visceral, motivating fear that many other types of loss can''t match. The fear you have of falling as you navigate a canyon, or fight a horde of monsters, or hear the collapse of a building around you; these are all the fear of death.



Yes, in real life, death is frighteing because you know it''s the real end but you don''t know what is on the other side of death. Often in games it just pisses you off...You know what''s on the other side. And you know you''ll have to repeat what you did before now. (although you are right it lets you know when you fail)


quote:

You will run into a problem in terms of realism in some situations. Realistically, the dragon or serial killer or whatever you''re facing likely would not keep you alive, and so the fear of facing your foe would probably be somewhat diminished.



Yes, I meant to mention that. It would depend on the creature or reason you died.

quote:

so you''ll have to look at what failure means in the game



Agreed.





""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


#4 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:20 PM

You should try and eliminate death in games altogether and make the setbacks of death remove any stats (if stats you have) or skills (if they be what you have) that would cause a lot of pain. Then people would fear death rather than endure it. In Diablo II I would always use thorns to remove that nasty boss bitch at the end of the second act (always on multiplayer, because he was far too hard then). I died so much, and although I lost experience, I didn''t really care... Make death something that people wouldn''t endure

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#5 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:42 PM

quote:
Original post by dwarfsoft

You should try and eliminate death in games altogether and make the setbacks of death remove any stats (if stats you have) or skills (if they be what you have) that would cause a lot of pain. Then people would fear death rather than endure it. In Diablo II I would always use thorns to remove that nasty boss bitch at the end of the second act (always on multiplayer, because he was far too hard then). I died so much, and although I lost experience, I didn't really care... Make death something that people wouldn't endure




Well, what I'm thinking is if the game is a heavily story-based game, death just gets in the way of a potentially interesting turn in the story (assuming the story is fairlt divergent). Instead of making it inconvenient to the player to get his ass kicked in a battle, make it an interesting turn in the story.




""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.



Edited by - Nazrix on October 19, 2000 7:51:07 PM


#6 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:47 PM

Hmmm, As long as they realise that death is a hardship that they wish to avoid, but can continue on if they do die then I think it is acceptable. I would just like to see it more difficult after death than before, because otherwise people act out of character and throw themselves to a certain death.

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#7 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:54 PM

quote:
Original post by dwarfsoft

Hmmm, As long as they realise that death is a hardship that they wish to avoid, but can continue on if they do die then I think it is acceptable



Either I am really confused, or I''ve been misleading in my statements. I''m not talking about continuing after death, I''m talking about death being rare. Instead, there will be in-game consequences like the player being captured or banished or something of that nature. There wouldn''t be death, but there would be plot-based negative consequences.





""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


#8 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:56 PM

BTW, how do you like my dwarsoft color scheme?



""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


#9 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 12:56 PM

Ah, Now I understand why we were at odds when we need not be. You are absolutely correct, I must be tired .

PS. I like the colour change in your sig

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#10 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 01:02 PM

quote:
Original post by dwarfsoft

Ah, Now I understand why we were at odds when we need not be. You are absolutely correct, I must be tired .


I was trying to figure out what the hell you were talking about


quote:

PS. I like the colour change in your sig



I do too





""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


Edited by - Nazrix on October 19, 2000 8:02:43 PM


#11 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 01:05 PM

You obviously made good use of those F''s and C''s .

Some good alternative to ''death is permanent'' include the spirit idea. You float around as a spirit and are able to cast spells, but you cannot communicate with others. Seers are about the only people who can hear you. Reincarnation comes to mind as well though.

Am I just ranting again?

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#12 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 01:37 PM

dwarf that''s a good idea as well. It might be cool if you only have so many game days to get reincarnated, but being a spirit may have great advantages too. Like, Daggerfall let you become a vampire and werewolf, but you had only so many days to get a cure. Then once per game year you''d get a quest that could bring you a cure, and a game year was quite a long time.



""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


#13 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 02:40 PM

Possession comes to mind.. You can wander around in somebody elses body, until they try and exorcise you from them. Then you can go to a preist and get reincarnated. Could be fun

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#14 Nazrix   Members   -  Reputation: 307

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 02:45 PM

quote:
Original post by dwarfsoft

Possession comes to mind.. You can wander around in somebody elses body, until they try and exorcise you from them. Then you can go to a preist and get reincarnated. Could be fun




hehe...that's a good idea, dwarf




""You see... I'm not crazy... you see?!? Nazrix believes me!" --Wavinator

Need help? Well, go FAQ yourself.


Edited by - Nazrix on October 19, 2000 9:45:30 PM


#15 MatrixCubed   Members   -  Reputation: 199

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 03:02 PM

That''s essentially what I''m shooting for in my game: (yet another) online RPG... but I''m doing some things that have yet to be done, like choosing an unusual setting / comparable real world historical timeperiod, as well as orienting negative / antagonistic forces around the supernatural (as opposed to monstrous, a la AD&D / UO / EQ / you-name-it). Hopefully combining that with hiding stats from players will give a more realistic* "feel" for the game. I''m also attempting to include real-life stuff like lifespans (after which your character indubitably passes on) and permanent death (but again, giving ghosts / spirits the ability to converse with seers, and vice versa).

Not a lot of irrealistic* minutiae, but I figure someone has to try it sometime.

One small step...

*(Ir)realistic in terms of believability "for a fantasy game". You know it''s not real, don''t you?


MatrixCubed


#16 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 19 October 2000 - 03:36 PM

I am setting my Learning Experience in the Midkemian Universe (not on its world). I intend to start off small and if all goes according to plan, then I intend to make Midkemia (Kingdom, Kesh and etc.), Kelewan, I also intend to include the world of Katherine Kerrs books (can''t remember what it is called). The hall of worlds will become, and the garden will be a magnificent place. The garden that sits outside the universe will allow a viewer to see the beginning of the universe when the blind gods first started their inseccent(sp?) spinning and ripping of the ''stuff'' of the universe.

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#17 AndyMan   Members   -  Reputation: 148

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Posted 20 October 2000 - 08:30 PM

I hope no-one has said this already...
If you want to make death something the player wants to avoid, don''t allow Save & Continue. Allow Save & Quit, but when the player continues, he shouldn''t be allowed to continue from that point again.
Or, allow a certain number of "Save & Continue"s. It shouldn''t be too hard to wind this into a story.

#18 dwarfsoft   Moderators   -  Reputation: 1217

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Posted 21 October 2000 - 11:06 PM

I agree... Reload is the root of all evil. Never subject to demand to have it. If you want such an availability though, make it a part of the game for a spirit to seek to start from a period in the past. Therefore the character must have left beacons for the spirit to find. It might add to a little bit of fun in the game that way. Reload should always be at a cost though, so it is something to avoid rather than a necessary evil

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - Site:"The Philosophers' Stone of Programming Alchemy" - IOL
The future of RPGs - Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche
          


#19 MatrixCubed   Members   -  Reputation: 199

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Posted 22 October 2000 - 05:02 PM

Hmm well considering my game is an online RPG (or FLS if you follow this link''s mindless innovation), "no save feature" isn''t really an option.

I''m sure many people will not be happy with it initially, but I am considering alternatives such as heirs and/or offspring (trying to decide how such a thing can be prevented from being abused).



MatrixCubed


#20 ochavelli   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 22 October 2000 - 07:10 PM

One way to handle death in a MMORPG is to turn a players previous (dead) characters into guardian angels for his current (living) character.

Perhaps you could have an altar that you sacrifice something on or whatever. Then, the player would be teleported to some spiritual plane. Maybe there''d be a Parthenon locking building and when you enter it all (or some) of your previous characters are there just chillin''.

Then maybe you could train with them or take one of them back you for a while. Or you could tell them to send down a lightning bolt to scorch a critter (a goblin no doubt) that tries to sneak up behind you and slit your throat. Or you could allow yourself to be possessed. Yada-yada-yada.

Alright, now get out there and start killing some players.

-----------
ochavelli

"...A dead MALE pig??!" -- another guy I work with




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