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Losing all items when your character die.


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#21 Reavermyst   Members   -  Reputation: 133

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 07:31 PM

It's a neat concept but very frustrating in application. I've read that Sony Online Entertainment's Wizardry Online has a feature just like that, but it's the kind of feature that promotes an extremely hardcore player base.  Unless said items are easily retrievable and/or attainable, you can expect a game that'll attract a small niche of players who may stay a while.  Anyone outside this niche are more likely to quit in a short amount of time.  Implying that this is a multiplayer game we're discussing of course.



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#22 Ravyne   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 7405

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Posted 10 January 2013 - 08:25 PM

I like the idea of all the players loot going away when they die, but my thought to help the player deal with such a lose is to have loot drop a lot more often and limit how much they can carry.

 

Say the player has a weapon slot, a magic slot, and an armor slot, plus 3 spaces to store things in their invintory. Well, they will fight a gang of 4 roaming bandits and they get 2 pieces of loot from each of them. Even if their inventory was completely empty and had nothing equiped, they still need to leave 2 things behind.

 

By getting the player used to leaving loot all over the place, they become less attached to their gear. It will make starting over a little more bearable, even if the player had nearly end-game gear and screwed up right before the big bad end boss fight.

 

But thats just what I think about it biggrin.png

 

Good points. This is pretty much how I am going to design it.

 

That's all well and good if the rest of the design supports it -- but you pretty much have to go down a line where one's effectiveness is generally defined by the player character's attributes (e.g. attack power is more a function of my strength and acumen, than the quality or "specialness" of my sword), or alternatively that my effectiveness as a player is linked to my ability to play the game well (e.g. by playing more strategically, or simply "getting better"--usually by exploiting weaknesses in AI or level design than by any actual skill). Once you've gone down the road of dropping loot all the time with no recourse, you've created a game where you can't have meaningful differences between like items (e.g. swords) for like players (players with more money obviously can buy better equipment, and there are plenty of ways for rewarding more money to more advanced players). This may be your design, I just want to point out that the drop-loot-all-the-time model is somewhat at odds with the RPG staple of gaining better equipment.



#23 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 04:58 AM

It's a neat concept but very frustrating in application. I've read that Sony Online Entertainment's Wizardry Online has a feature just like that, but it's the kind of feature that promotes an extremely hardcore player base.  Unless said items are easily retrievable and/or attainable, you can expect a game that'll attract a small niche of players who may stay a while.  Anyone outside this niche are more likely to quit in a short amount of time.  Implying that this is a multiplayer game we're discussing of course.

 

Two very popular games: "Runescape" and "Realm of the Mad God" has this feature too.



#24 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 04:59 AM


Once you've gone down the road of dropping loot all the time with no recourse, you've created a game where you can't have meaningful differences between like items (e.g. swords) for like players (players with more money obviously can buy better equipment, and there are plenty of ways for rewarding more money to more advanced players). This may be your design, I just want to point out that the drop-loot-all-the-time model is somewhat at odds with the RPG staple of gaining better equipment.


Two very popular games: "Runescape" and "Realm of the Mad God" has this (drop all items upon death) feature too.



#25 Ashaman73   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 7512

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 06:39 AM

Two very popular games: "Runescape" and "Realm of the Mad God" has this feature too.

Two very popular games: "Runescape" and "Realm of the Mad God" has this (drop all items upon death) feature too.

It is risky to argue that a feature, because it is contained in a popular game, is automatically a good feature. A feature lives in the context of a whole game. It might be good in one game and very bad in an other game.

 

You need to define the context with this in mind. E.g. if your items are really generic, drops often and are just more like tools, then item drop is really ok. On the other hand, if you have many unique items (to which the players get attached), seldom item drop and equipment which serves as instrument to make the character unique and special, then item drop could be very frustrating.

 

There are game features you just can add and there are game features where you need to build the game around it. Perma-death and item drop are such game features.



#26 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 07:23 AM


It is risky to argue that a feature, because it is contained in a popular game, is automatically a good feature. A feature lives in the context of a whole game. It might be good in one game and very bad in an other game.

 

I agree. Which is why I am not making that argument. I am only stating a fact that seem to be overlooked by the previous two posters. (and I didn't realized I spammed the same reply twice because it was very early in the morning :P)

 


You need to define the context with this in mind. E.g. if your items are really generic, drops often and are just more like tools, then item drop is really ok. On the other hand, if you have many unique items (to which the players get attached), seldom item drop and equipment which serves as instrument to make the character unique and special, then item drop could be very frustrating.
 

 

I think Runescape got away with haqving item-drop-on-death and unique/special equipment by allowing for 3/4 items to be saved. This allows generic drops to be sacrificed and avoid frustrating players by making them lose unique/special items. (Realm of the Mad God, on the other hand, tend to be more niche and hardcore than Runescape because they force you to lose your unique/special equipment)

Do you think allowing for 3/4 saves is a good way to do it? Or would it be better to simply not have unique/special/rare items?



#27 samoth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4783

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 08:50 AM

A map with no players on it had all item drops cleared every 5 minutes. If you died 25 seconds before the map was cleared, your corpse only lasted 25 seconds. If you died 10 seconds after a map was cleared, your corpse would last until the next clear in 4 minutes and 50 seconds. This was an unintentional side-effect of maps clearing monster drops that nobody wanted to pick up, but we liked it so we left it in.

 

This can be easily amended with a two-pass cleanup to be less "aggressive". Flag all corpses as "delete on next turn" every 2.5 minutes, and delete all corpses already flagged. If you die 10 seconds before a cleanup tick, your corpse will still last 2 minutes 40 seconds. In the best case, if you die immediately after a cleanup tick, your corpse lasts 5 minutes.

 

This is what I'd do, it has practically the same overhead but isn't nearly as frustrating in the worst case.



#28 samoth   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4783

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 08:57 AM

I think Runescape got away with haqving item-drop-on-death and unique/special equipment by allowing for 3/4 items to be saved. This allows generic drops to be sacrificed and avoid frustrating players by making them lose unique/special items. (Realm of the Mad God, on the other hand, tend to be more niche and hardcore than Runescape because they force you to lose your unique/special equipment)
Runescape had a very nice PvP flavour with that too, in that you lose all items when you are skulled (i.e. after agressing another player). Though for some reason they gradually changed this (probably because PK kids were whining about losing their stuff?).

The fact of being skulled and the risk of losing everything was the "price" you had to pay for attacking others. Which was a fair trade-off, and a challenge.

First, it was changed so turning on the protection prayer would allow you to keep an item even when skulled (if for no other reason, this is someting I would not do because of lore -- a "prayer" should not work if you act against your deities, no matter how strong you pray).

And more recently, the entire concept of "skull" was dropped. I wonder why. So basically now you can just do what you want without any consequences, if I understand correctly. Everything you do (good or bad) should have a consequence.

Edited by samoth, 11 January 2013 - 08:58 AM.


#29 Servant of the Lord   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 19560

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 10:24 AM

A map with no players on it had all item drops cleared every 5 minutes. If you died 25 seconds before the map was cleared, your corpse only lasted 25 seconds. If you died 10 seconds after a map was cleared, your corpse would last until the next clear in 4 minutes and 50 seconds. This was an unintentional side-effect of maps clearing monster drops that nobody wanted to pick up, but we liked it so we left it in.

 

This can be easily amended with a two-pass cleanup to be less "aggressive". Flag all corpses as "delete on next turn" every 2.5 minutes, and delete all corpses already flagged. If you die 10 seconds before a cleanup tick, your corpse will still last 2 minutes 40 seconds. In the best case, if you die immediately after a cleanup tick, your corpse lasts 5 minutes.

 

This is what I'd do, it has practically the same overhead but isn't nearly as frustrating in the worst case.

 

I wasn't the programmer for that project.

 

There weren't corpses per se, the items that were equipped just fell on the ground like regular monster loot (Any non-equipped items didn't fall to the ground, but one random item from your inventory also was dropped). There are plenty of ways it could've been fixed, but we never got around to it. The project was abandoned in 2010, after four years of sporadic work. smile.png


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#30 Legendre   Members   -  Reputation: 966

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 04:47 PM


The project was abandoned in 2010, after four years of sporadic work. 

 

Oh wow. Was there something like a post mortem written about it? I would love to read and learn from it.



#31 Servant of the Lord   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 19560

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 08:18 PM

No post-mortem - it was just a few of people who met online and made a simple 2D orpg game together. Since we never finished the game, we didn't advertise it, so we only had about ~20 active players. You could download the repackaged "single player" version if you like (the orpg but without other players walking around - put up for download when the project shut down). The project was called Decayed of Zombies.


It's perfectly fine to abbreviate my username to 'Servant' rather than copy+pasting it all the time.
All glory be to the Man at the right hand... On David's throne the King will reign, and the Government will rest upon His shoulders. All the earth will see the salvation of God.
Of Stranger Flames - [indie turn-based rpg set in a para-historical French colony] | Indie RPG development journal

[Fly with me on Twitter] [Google+] [My broken website]

[Need web hosting? I personally like A Small Orange]





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