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forced teamplay elements

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im designing a multiplayer game right now and i would really like to force its teamplay elements. personally my favourite games have been ones that have had team elements (tribes, halo, battlefields 1942) but it has always bothered me that people play around these elements rather than use them. i really enjoy having vehicles that require users to drive it together, thats what my game is focusing on, combat based on capital ships with multiple users manning different guns and systems of the ships. anyone else doing anything like this? care to discuss?

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thats true, and i used to be like that too, but i got sick of the ''lonewolf'' kinda thing.. it was the same way in counterstrike.

by making it so as a group you would have to play on that same skill level, i think that would be more rewarding.

also id like to note that this game im developing is console based so players on teams would be playing on the same machine... thats another problems with the teamplay elements over pc.. its hard to follow instructions if they just fly by with text.

but tribes was good for that with their voice command system.

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I absolutely agree, team based efforts are awesome when they work.

But you can't stop anyone who logs in from just being a rogue player that's out for their own.

Battlefield 1942 doesn't force team play, but I think it should be left up to the player to discover for themselves how teamplay strengthens the efforts. I'm more a rogue team player myself - I go where I think I'm needed, and only respond to direct requests when I'm called.

If your force teamplay too much, you might actually constrict the experience even for those that agree with teamplay.

You could design the game to be hard to win without teamplay, and that would teach the players the necessity of teamplay. Those that don't play that way will get frustrated quickly.

[edited by - Waverider on June 4, 2003 12:05:32 PM]

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yea, for our game were not totally curbing the abiltiy to play a rouge player. but just making it the game requires you to play with your team if you want to really be involved.

the game is basically a top down like subspace but its more focused on fleet based combat, teams start on other sides of deep space and the only way to get from one side of the map to the other is through the use of capital ships, capital ships need to be manned by many users and each play different roles.

there will be defence fighters and carrier fighters but they will be limited to the range of their base (finate fuel supplies etc)

the carrier ships them selves will need to co-ordinate as for some are for carrying fighters, others are heavy weapons for base seige and others are supply and repair vehicles, radar etc.

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The only problem with FORCED team play is not everyone likes teamplay.. and if 1 person in the team runs off then its harder on the members that are left to pick up the slack.. I would say put elements in that you have to work together but I personally make it possible to play alone if you''d like or if its forced apon you..

what if your team getes blown up and its just you.. now you can''t do anything if you force to team play.. as you have no team to play with

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right, we are adaping the battlefields 1942 system of respawning from captured points (or constructed ships in our case).

so the team will always be active, but co-ordination will be required to complete goals

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You may want to look into FireTeam. That game''s goal was to be focused on teamwork and create a community. You may find some interesting advice in Gamasutra''s postmortem on the game. (You can get there from the articles section of Gamedev) A few of the things they did:

- Made voice communication standard. The game came with a headset (you know, headphones + microphone). This freed the hands from typing and reduced issues about missing a command/request as the text scrolls by. (by the way, I don''t know what people think about the bandwidth this would take, but according to the postmortem, I believe they targeted 14.4 modems, and it ran beautifully on my 28.8 at the time)

- Teams were small. 4 people per team. This helped a lot toward creating teamwork. If one person isn''t pulling his weight, then you''ve lost 25% of your team.

- You create teams in the lobby, not just jump into existing games. This means if you have a reputation for screwing your team, you don''t get on a team. Also, there were two types of games: those that anyone can play and those that only people whose stats are being tracked can play. You don''t have to track your stats from the start, so you don''t get screwed while you''re a newbie, but you also don''t get to play with the best until they can see your stats and see that you pull your weight.

- The maps and the games were designed around teamwork from the ground up.

Well, that''s all I got, just a suggestion to look at another game, with a similar goal, that I loved.

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Sorry to go off topic, but I still have an old copy of Fireteam somewhere, does anyone still play it? I''ll have to fire it up and get online and see.....

On topic : I don''t see what''s wrong with making a game that forces teamplay. Look at Ghost Recon et al., where the AI has to pretend to be your missing squad mates :-) if you are not playing multiplayer. If people make overtly single player path games, why not make overtly multiplayer path games?

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quote:
Original post by doomhunk
Sorry to go off topic, but I still have an old copy of Fireteam somewhere, does anyone still play it? I''ll have to fire it up and get online and see.....



Sadly, I think it died a long time ago. I never played it much because there was a decent amount of time where I couldn''t even get to the lobby (during the beta) and I never made it back once it was fixed. Even FireTalk (the IM based on the voice technology used in FireTeam) is gone.

quote:

On topic : I don''t see what''s wrong with making a game that forces teamplay. Look at Ghost Recon et al., where the AI has to pretend to be your missing squad mates :-) if you are not playing multiplayer. If people make overtly single player path games, why not make overtly multiplayer path games?


Well, multiplayer and focused on teamwork are a bit different. There are many multiplayer games that you can basically go off and do your own thing and it''ll work just as well as being a team player. Focusing on teamwork probably means that a team of average players working together will be as good as or better than a team of highly skilled players who aren''t working together. Basically, you''ll probably lose anyone who doesn''t work well in a team. How many people that is, I don''t know.

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Point taken Way Walker, I was being a bit lazy in expressing myself so badly.... thanks for picking that up.

I have been thinking about one particular session of Ghost Recon that I have played where I took the opposite approach to how I normally play it. I set up an alpha squad of three, a beta squad of two, and then I took the last spot for myself as a lone sniper. I moved the two squads around to cover me and act as a buffer, and I merrily played through the first five or six missions just creeping about and sniping. I came unstuck after a while, but hey. The point is, when faced with a game that would appear to force team play, I did my best to go it alone :-) although I suppose I still relied on the two squads to save my skin from time to time.

Anyway, to return to the original poster's topic :-) he's making a game where multiple players play together in teams by being housed on the same capital ships? Sounds interesting. If at first I thought it might be a bit restricting, I have only to think of B-17 Flying Fortress to realise that this can be fun, especially when you get to move around from station to station on board your ship. In a sense, your capital ship is a similar construct to say, defending the castle in the beachhead map in multiplayer Return to Castle Wolfenstein. I think if your capital ship team is together by virtue of location, plus they are all different but complimentary character types like medic, gunner, leader etc but more relevant to capital ships... so maybe missile spotter/target painter who electronically paints targets for missiles to go for, sandcaster/defender who fires chaff and sand to protect against missiles and lasers, conventional gunners who fire lasers, pilots, etc etc......

[edited by - doomhunk on June 4, 2003 10:27:57 PM]

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thats right, if anything were focusing on the logistics of combat but still were going to leave it open for users to jump in a small ship and fight (home base defense)

were still in the design phase for the capital ship system, but id like to hear what you guys think about some kind of way of promoting users to be able to use capital ships, one thing im worried about our plan now will be jerks jumping in critical ships and just joyriding around in them. im playing around with ideas of using some kind of ''performance threshold'' where you skill in the game plus feedback from your peers can promote you to different ranks, which will allow you to pilot different vehicles.

i dont know im still working out some ideas and seeing if its feasible... at the same time i dont want to make it too complicated to have fun playing.

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quote:
Original post by spikespiegel
thats right, if anything were focusing on the logistics of combat but still were going to leave it open for users to jump in a small ship and fight (home base defense)

were still in the design phase for the capital ship system, but id like to hear what you guys think about some kind of way of promoting users to be able to use capital ships, one thing im worried about our plan now will be jerks jumping in critical ships and just joyriding around in them. im playing around with ideas of using some kind of ''performance threshold'' where you skill in the game plus feedback from your peers can promote you to different ranks, which will allow you to pilot different vehicles.

i dont know im still working out some ideas and seeing if its feasible... at the same time i dont want to make it too complicated to have fun playing.



I don''t know how viable this option would be, but you could do something like FireTeam. You don''t jump into existing games, you form teams before the game begins and that''s how they stay throughout the game. Teams are formed in the lobby, where you can see a person''s name and stats. If you don''t want someone on your team, you kick them off your team. Also, people would get a reputation just through the community. If you had a bad experience with someone, you would just take the appropriate steps to not be on a team with them.

Of course, this does lead to some other design problems. Games were kept short (10 min) so that teams wouldn''t be broken up. It also requires a lobby where people can talk. I''m not sure how that figures into your plan, but it might be something to think about.

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note, the defence fighters are bindable to capital ships

Have you ever played subspace? players could ''bind'' to other players like in that, also ship captians can eject stupid players from their ship.

What we had planned was that depending on your current ratings you would have to wait longer to respawn with a more powerful captial ship.

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quote:
Original post by spikespiegel
note, the defence fighters are bindable to capital ships

Have you ever played subspace? players could ''bind'' to other players like in that, also ship captians can eject stupid players from their ship.

What we had planned was that depending on your current ratings you would have to wait longer to respawn with a more powerful captial ship.




I played a little subspace, but not much. Spent more time in infantry. Is "binding" similar to "attaching" or "summoning" in infantry? Or more like "binding" in EQ or life stones in AC?

Not sure how I feel about your rating increasing your respawn rate. New players are already at a disadvantage just because they haven''t played as much. Like in CTF in Infantry, new players not only have no skill, but also only have the bottom-of-the-barrel equipment, making it much harder to get started in CTF.

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well the respawn for capital ships isnt intended to be the bigger the capital ship the better it is, like the carrier can only take fighters long distances, if a new player would want to raise his rating or to get more kills he wouldnt want the carrier, only a experienced player who wanted to push the fleet further would choose to be this.

thats what i mean by logistical combat, team co-ordination will be required to actually move the fleet to enemy positions, its not like a person could jump in a frigate and go out for glory, a battle group would not be able to survive to a enemy sector with out the required support craft (fuel tankers, escorts, radar scouts etc)

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