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mwittstrom

To choose or not to choose

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Im intressted in knowing what you prefer in a game, when it comes to selecting equipment for your character. Do you like the possibilite to build your own stuff to your exect specification, with all the work of figering out the best combination of firepower/cost/weight/etc OR Do you like to have finished products to choose from. Example: If you want a tripple barreled shotgun , do you want to get three barrels, a handle and a trigger and put it all together, or do you what to go to a shop only to find a two barrel shotgun, but you can use it immediately. This isn''t a genre specific question, it''s about all equipment in all types of games. From shoot-em-up''s to MMORPG''s

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i would only want to put it together if there were some really cool hidden weapons that you could get by combining the right parts. Powerstone (cant remember if it''s 1 or 2) on the Dreamcast did this really well - as you were fighting you could collect weapons/bits of weapons, and then go into the shop and build your own.

however, if there''s not much to really explore, i''d probably go with the 2-barreled shotgun (surely 2 barrels is enough?)

another thing i don''t like about configuration is the chance that you might get it horribly horribly wrong, and if there''s no "undo" button it can be a pain in the arse spending so much money trying to find the right combination of parts.

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quote:
Original post by MENTAL
however, if there''s not much to really explore, i''d probably go with the 2-barreled shotgun (surely 2 barrels is enough?)



My example wasn''t really good, not only should you be able to select what parts of the equipment that you want, but also how you put them together.
In my shootgun example you could set change the angels of the barrels to get a better spread.

And you should be able to take it apart and to build someting else with the parts.

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There are a lot of balance problems with DIY weapons - unless you can find some way to ensure that every combination of options is balanced, it will only be a matter of time before someone figures out how to build an uber weapon.

Assuming you can solve that problem, there's still no reason to force players to build their own. There should be off the shelf weapons they can pick up if they want to, or they could go to the workshop and get one custom made.


[edited by - Sandman on September 23, 2003 6:06:59 AM]

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To a certain extent, there is nothing to stop you doing both. In fact, the optimum choice would probably be to base the weapon system sround construction, yet introduce the player to it via pre-constructed items. That way the player can get started easily and eventually, at their own pace, learn the ways in which they can expand/develop their arsenal.

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quote:
Original post by m_wherrett
To a certain extent, there is nothing to stop you doing both. In fact, the optimum choice would probably be to base the weapon system sround construction, yet introduce the player to it via pre-constructed items. That way the player can get started easily and eventually, at their own pace, learn the ways in which they can expand/develop their arsenal.


Yes, this is what I am thinking about doing.

I''m more wondering if players in general likes to spend the time it takes to create their own equipment, I know that I love a game where I can customize everything, but if only 0.1% of the players enjoy this it would be stupid of me to add this to my game.

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quote:
Original post by mwittstrom
I''m more wondering if players in general likes to spend the time it takes to create their own equipment, I know that I love a game where I can customize everything, but if only 0.1% of the players enjoy this it would be stupid of me to add this to my game.




If you''re going for a major commercial game, then you should be worried about what the majority of gamers think they want. If you''re programming mainly for your own benefit or for a shareware level release, your main concern should be making the game you want to make. I''m not saying you should completely ignore other people''s preferences, but ultimately, the fun in the game has to come from you, and you''re more likely to make a fun game of whatever type if it has the features you want.

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DIY Weaponry can be fun, but you have to express the weapon in terms of useful numbers, otherwise it's just confusing. For example, the rifle barrel, long produces better accuracy, but it's more of a inconvienience to carry around. Then theres ammunition type. Smaller calibur rounds have a longer distance, but have less penetration power. Actually, I think that most Police forces in america use a standard issue Baretta, simply because it's longer range and higher rate of criminals surviving the shot.

[edited by - inmate2993 on September 23, 2003 12:33:41 PM]

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Standard, with options to enhance later.

Rare enhancements would be cool to find in single player.

Multiplayer- keep it balanced

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quote:
Original post by mwittstrom
Im intressted in knowing what you prefer in a game, when it comes to selecting equipment for your character.

Do you like the possibilite to build your own stuff to your exect specification, with all the work of figering out the best
combination of firepower/cost/weight/etc

OR

Do you like to have finished products to choose from.



I think the choice can give you all kinds of benefits from the gameplay standpoint. Having something prebuilt and ready to go that has effect on the gameworld environment is easy to select and use in the designed challenge player approach.

On the other side of the coin, there is a significant number of people out there who are tinkerers, and gamers, being part techie, might have this trait, and get a lot of fun out of creating something in game that does for them what the standard stock cannot do.

For example from an old Star Trek episode, the command crew gets transported to a planet by a higher species to battle Klingons, but they have no phasers and sensor arrays, so they can directly address the conflict in hand to hand combat sometimes, and eventually have to fashion spears, bows and arrows, and other ''made items'' to overcome opposition.

I have designed some of these things into my game, but I am going to do some serious play testing observations to see whether or not this kind of gameplay activity is going to be tinkerer specific enjoyable, or a larger demographic of players will find it good gameplay design.

I wonder if anybody has anything already written on this somewhere?

Addy

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