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I'm considering adding magic to my game.

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I haven't really given the setting or world much thought yet, but so far I've been thinking that it should be a modern/slighly futuristic world, where people usually use guns (pistols, rifles, maybe crossbows etc) to fight. The game has a realistic damage system (the most realistic I'VE seen anyways), which has a lot of benifits but also generates some difficult design problems. Most notably, how is the character going to travel to a doctor (or someplace he can be healed) if he's shot in the leg... or whereever, really? And shouldn't any kind of damage be quite crippling during the game? It might turn into a reload-whenever-you're-damaged game, and that would really suck. There are ways to handle this, but they don't feel quite sufficient. Anyways, I've been playing Lionheart (good game, not great) and I just realized that magic isn't such a stupid idea. In fact, it's pretty cool. And it has some nice benifits. 1) The above mentioned problem can be helped by giving the player some kind of healing/ignore pain-spell. 2) Magic items are neat 3) It adds a lot of depth - a whole new way to play the game On the other hand.... 1) Maybe people who want magic doesn't like modern settings (I think this is true in a lot of cases actually, but on the other hand there's a great and popular PnP RPG called ShadowRun which really mixes magic and the modern world in a good and very cool way) 2) Maybe people who for once would like a modern RPG with cool assault rifles and maybe even cybernetic implants (not decided yet) would be turned off by magic? 3) I don't want to FORCE anyone to be a magic user because "if you don't use magic you'll die from one wound!" (this isn't true of course, but...) 4) Balancing the game will take A LOT more time and effort. It wouldn't be a problem to add it to my current design (I just have to add one more skill I think)... Lol, I don't know what my question is really, except maybe: Do you think magic would be a good or bad addition, from what you understand of the game? ------------------ "Kaka e gott" - Me Current project: An RPG with tactical, real-time combat with a realistic damage system, and randomly generated world and dialogue. [edited by - Srekel on August 19, 2003 6:39:33 AM]

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I''m not sure that magic doesn''t match with modern settings. I planed to make a game with both magic and technology and I think it could make a good game. The problem is that in your game, you have realistic damade. It''s hard for me to think how could magic damage be realistic. You can easily use modern way to health your player. You can use adrenaline to allow your player to visit a doctor. If you use cybernetic implants or nano-machines I''m sure that you could use it to heal tour player as easy as you could with magic.

To answer your question, personnaly I like world with magic and modern stuff. But I will certainely dislike a world like that with realistic damage.

Good luck.

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Well, you can, instead of magic, use more *modern* things like mind powers (psionic bolts, mind control).
Fast regeneration stimpacks can solve the problem when fast heal/relief is required.
I would like to join you as *Les important designer* and writer.


[edited by - rogerdv on August 19, 2003 8:37:17 AM]

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Magic can work well with realistic damage, I can remember some interesting shadowrun fights that included magic and realistic damage Just don''t make your magic be derivative of other games, we don''t need to see the usual fireball, acid rain, blah blah blah spells over and over again. And I don''t like using mp either, I would rather you have to make a sacrifice to use magic. I like how in shadowrun it gives you stun damage to use magic. Maybe something like that could work. Or, lets say you want to remove one wound from your leg - maybe you have to sacrifice by getting a wound in some other area of your choosing If you lose a leg, you can blow off your arm and your leg will grow back.

Darker magic might need external sacrifice to be successful. You have to kill an innocent person to fulfil the spell. Yipes, that gives me the creeps.

But shadowrun and other cyberpunk games show that magic can be done well in a modernish setting. Even the likes of Final Fantasy, which is HUGELY popular, incorporated magic into modern settings. Although I haven''t followed the series past final fantasy 6.

If you can incorporate it into your current design, then go for it. If you have cybernetics/nanobots etc in ADDITION to magic, be sure to have the magic system quite different from the technology system.

And if it''s slightly futuristic, you can probably use more advanced medicine to help make the realistic damage model a little more forgiving, whether you have magic or not. Just try and balance these things, if you can''t you might be better off without magic.

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Thats the problem with using realistic damage if the character loses a leg or gets crippled are they suppose to drag themselves to the nearest hospital? Of course if you had team mates they could carry you.

I''m personally against magic in games, simply because almost every single rpg has magic in it There can be alternitives to magic epacilly in semi futureistic setting.

Instead of having magic items have futuristic items. Such a laser guns, or an energy whip. Lose a leg then the player attaches the emergancy leg to allow them to walk to the nearest hospital.

If the player gets seriously injured you can have a verity of drugs to allow them to keep going. Or Even an Auto Medkit that will patch them up.

There are plenty of options, that you will have to consider anyway for the players who don''t use magic.

-----------------------------------------------------
Writer, Programer, Cook, I''m a Jack of all Trades
Current Design project
Chaos Factor Design Document

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Your problem is that you''re trying to combine some realistic aspects (crippling injuries) with an unrealistic concept (a guy who gets shot at on a regular basis but somehow manages to survive.) If a regular person (i.e. not a videogame or action movie star) was being shot at, he''d run the hell away, but that wouldn''t make a particularily interesting action game. In order to compensate for the inherant unrealisticness in your premise, you''re going to have to introduce some unrealistic elements in your gameplay.

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quote:
Original post by Drooling Iguana
Your problem is that you're trying to combine some realistic aspects (crippling injuries) with an unrealistic concept (a guy who gets shot at on a regular basis but somehow manages to survive.) If a regular person (i.e. not a videogame or action movie star) was being shot at, he'd run the hell away , but that wouldn't make a particularily interesting action game. In order to compensate for the inherant unrealisticness in your premise, you're going to have to introduce some unrealistic elements in your gameplay.


Hehe, true. One unrealistic thing in the game (the most notable one) is the speed at which the character improves. This is something that is part of all RPGs I've seen, and I feel it is kind of a vital part for an RPG. This can however be realistic, if the character is some kind of magic wielder and endowed with some kind of supernatural powers.

I have a feeling that I might have to add some extremely good "healing potions" though.

"I'm personally against magic in games, simply because almost every single rpg has magic in it "
I'm not really against magic or fantasy, but I am becoming tired of every RPG out there being fantasy with magic with a dwarf that has a scottish (?) accent! (yes I know that not all RPGs are like that )
I do think that magic is a cool concept though, and used right can make a game better.

"Instead of having magic items have futuristic items. Such a laser guns, or an energy whip. Lose a leg then the player attaches the emergancy leg to allow them to walk to the nearest hospital. "
Why not magic laser guns? :-D

"If the player gets seriously injured you can have a verity of drugs to allow them to keep going. Or Even an Auto Medkit that will patch them up."
So far I've thought of two ways for the character to heal. I don't want to make the character carry around 5 different kinds of healing devices...

"Darker magic might need external sacrifice to be successful. You have to kill an innocent person to fulfil the spell."
Hehe, interesting :-D


"we don't need to see the usual fireball, acid rain, blah blah blah spells over and over again. And I don't like using mp either, I would rather you have to make a sacrifice to use magic."

I haven't decided what kinds of spells I'll use. It would be cool to think of something new and innovative, but one would think that after 30 years of RPGs, most good ideas would be thought of already.
I would guess that I'll use some kind of mana points (but with dynamic costs), but things like sacrificing is quite cool too. For instance, if you wanted to heal your leg you might need some flesh. Well, what's better than the flesh from the dude you just knocked out



I really have to think about this some more. There is a lot of appeal in magic, and yet I feel like I should complete writing down the rest of what I have in my head before I start with something new


[edited by - Srekel on August 20, 2003 5:36:14 AM]

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Well you could explain the speed of improvement with technology as well. And instead of magic, you can always use nanotechnology, it''s quite popular lately.

Also, by sacrifice I don''t necesarily mean literal sacrifice. You just have to lose something. I mean, using mp is a form of sacrifice, just a bit of an overused one that doesn''t relate to much.

But I think the most important thing with all of this is to balance it all into your game. If the player has a lot of armor (and if he is going around fighting people, it might be a good idea), the realistic damage wont be as much of an issue because he will be protected. Have buddies who can help you, give him a cell phone so he can call 911 right away if he''s hurting really bad, they can drive up and take him to the hospital Replacement limbs are also a good idea.

I liked how in deus ex you could lose your legs, then all you had to do was use a few medkits and your legs would grow back It had pretty realistic damage, but they made it not annoying or too difficult.

Don''t use magic as a crutch, only use it if you really want it to be a part of the world. Otherwise its an addon that doesnt fit and messes up the game balance.

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"Well you could explain the speed of improvement with technology as well. And instead of magic, you can always use nanotechnology, it''s quite popular lately."

Yup, I am planning to have nano-tech in the game, so far only for healing purposes but I guess it could improve some other areas as well... Cybertech would also be cool.... Heheh, and so would magic. Damn... Hmm.


"Also, by sacrifice I don''t necesarily mean literal sacrifice. You just have to lose something. I mean, using mp is a form of sacrifice, just a bit of an overused one that doesn''t relate to much. "

In Arcanum they used Fatigue instead of mana, I think. It''s not a bad idea and it fits with my skillset as it is. The character could get propotionally slower/weaker/more tired, the more magic he used.


"But I think the most important thing with all of this is to balance it all into your game. If the player has a lot of armor (and if he is going around fighting people, it might be a good idea), the realistic damage wont be as much of an issue because he will be protected. Have buddies who can help you, give him a cell phone so he can call 911 right away if he''s hurting really bad, they can drive up and take him to the hospital Replacement limbs are also a good idea."

I like the buddies idea - could be some kind of guild that you can join that you can call whenever you need help. And of course, if you''re not doing anything illegal you could call "911". Replacement limbs are pretty cool, but they would cost a lot of money. I''m guessing a lot of people might reload because they want their cash!

Anyways this thread isn''t really about damage


"Don''t use magic as a crutch, only use it if you really want it to be a part of the world. Otherwise its an addon that doesnt fit and messes up the game balance. "

Yup. Absolutely.

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If you want to keep things realistic, then having a "last ditch effort" skill or spell or whatever that allows the character to ignore any damage that doesn''t physically cripple him for a limited time, at the expense of making the wounds worsen drastically. After all, in real life, there are documented cases of people getting seriously injured in situations with no chance of rescue and literally dragging themselves to safety (or to the nearest highway) before passing out... presumably waking up a week later in hospital facing a lengthy convalescence and a lifetime of disability (and a whopping medical bill in the US)

If you want low-key magic, you could try keeping it to purely psychosomatic effects - so you could inflict or alleviate pain, but you couldn''t actually tear someone''s leg off - or stick it back on (though you probably could dislocate a shoulder) depending on your preferences, psychosomatic manifestations could lead to actual accelerated healing or physical wounding. Alternatively, magic that blocks pain could allow characters to ignore the degradation effects of pain (possibly also blood loss though that''s less convincing) but again at the cost of aggravating the wounds - without direct treatment, blood loss continues at full flow (or increases?) and any localised damage increases (lifting something using a fractured arm is only going to make it worse)

If you''re going to add magic at all, it probably shouldn''t just be a single skill - instead make it a whole new category of five (eg: casting, resisting, item creation/enhancement, spell learning/creation, identification) If magic works in any useful fashion, it represents a drastic change to the world as we know it, and so demands to be built into the game rather than tacked on as a quick fix.

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