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Paul Cunningham

Toughness

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As in most games, one must be constantly increasing their health of their character in order to handle more dangerous opponents. I was thinking, what about leaving the health issue alone for a second so it doesn''t change to much for the start to finish of a game and just have the character increase in toughness. Having an attribute set aside called toughness. Toughness acts as a percentage of damage taken. This way you wouldn''t need the game revolving so much around the need for carrying millions of health potions everywhere. Which has the positive effect of making inventories a lot easier to use. If the character simply relied on the regenerative process to heal which could be speed up from time to time when neccessary via medical help. Simplifying this area of the game would also allow the the designer to create more in the game for the player to do and think about. So you can have more in a game in general becuase the player can give the game more thought per minute without health being so omni-present an issue. I love Game Design and it loves me back. Our Goal is "Fun"!

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Good idea.
Also, there''s the possiblitiy of using armour to absorb damage.



"NPC's are people too!" --dwarfsoft

"Nazrix is cool." --Nazrix first, then Darkmage

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Maybe I''m a bit weird here, but I favor the idea that damage taken is damage taken AND your hit points should be limited. An axe hitting the arm of Arnold Swartzennegar is going to have roughly the same effect as one hitting a 90 pound weakling.

I think this then makes armor and chance to hit much more important. So being lithe and fast (lower chance to hit) or decked out in power armor is what''s going to make the difference in a fight, not 10 to 43 power hitpoints (with the potions that go with them) OR some damage mitigator like toughness.



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Just waiting for the mothership...

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Personnaly, I like it the way it's done in a french P&P RPG called Simulacres.
You have fixed health points for each limb (2 legs, 2 arms, torso, head). You have a global number of breath points.
And a global number of Pain points.
Armor decreases the amount of success of a succesfull attack.
Shields decrease the ability of the enemy to touch.

When the attacker touches, the defender will lose, depending on the weapong used, different amounts of Life points in the touched zone, and Breath points.
When a limb reaches a certain limit, you substract a Pain point from your total. The Pain counters basically makes EVERY action you take be more difficult, until you pass out into coma.
When the Breath points reaches 0, you pass out (but there is no malus like in the Pain counter).
When the Life points reaches 0 in a limb, you can't use it anymore, and you risk death if it's head (matter minutes, seconds), or torso (minutes, hours). If you go under 0, the limb can be severed, chewed, etc ...

All this make combat extremely interesting as different weapons will result in different effect on your enemy.
Concussive weapons (hammer, mass, cudgel) are more Breath Pts oriented, while blade weapons will do more Life Pts damage... The bigger the size, the more damage (of course), usually in both Pts (a 2handed sword is *Heavy* and thus make you lose Breath, as well as a massive amount of Life points ... a master fencer will easily cut a man in half).

The amount of damage is based on look up tables. The better you succeeded in your test the more damage you can do, depending on the damage class of the weapon.
E.G. a long sword is (E) Life pts, (B) Breath pts.
which makes an average of 3 LP and 1 BP. When you know that the average LP per limb is 3 and you have 4 BP in total .... you better be careful when you decide to go fight anyone anywhere
note that the damages grow almost exponentially with the amount of success you have in your attack.

As well, the LP and BP are *extremely* hard to increase and anyway it's around 1 or 2 pts maximum. Same for your breath.
Basically, it means that your characters don't grow bigger and bigger muscles with their training, rather they develop superior skill, that make them much harder to touch, and makes them much better at it The more skilled you get, the more critical shots you can do, which tremendously increases the success of your attack (or defense).

A veteran or a newbie, if they are of the same size, will get as easily cut in two parts by a katana if they can't stop the blade ... (that's for Wavinator's example )

As well, if you understood my explanations, the focus is on the speed of healing. Breath points are gained quite quickly (one hour per point) and Life points as well (one per day once the wounds have been taken care of properly).
Of course, the trick would be to increase the speed of this recovery depending on the context (wilderness, field hospital, intensive care in a metropolis, etc). And that was for Paul ideas

Damn complicated, I know. If you are more interested, I could try to write it down better for you.

But anyway, I *DO* answer the topic, in my own lengthy, verbose way...
and believe me or not, there are a LOT less stats to take care of in this game.

youpla :-P


Edited by - ahw on September 2, 2000 7:58:49 PM

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Re: ahw
I didn''t quite get the difference between Breath Points and Life Points. What are they trying to simulate by having these two types of points? And how did it add to the game by having the two of them?

I love Game Design and it loves me back.

Our Goal is "Fun"!

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I think, if I read the examples correctly, that Breath points are Stun damage and they''re from a single pool for the entire character, while Life points are more like Kill damage except they are specfic to a body location.

Which is an interesting mix.

I''m curious about the pain points to life points ratio. If each body part has only a few life points, then it would seem that you will often add to the pain point total.

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Indeed
The Breath point are one counter, you get normall 4 of them, and that''s pretty much it for the rest of your life. They represent your stamina if you will, the fact that you get tired quite quickly in a fight, you can use all of them, pass out, and wake up without having any lethal consequences on your health.

The Life points, I guess you could call them structural damage, they are 3 for most limbs and 4 for the torso. And that''s it for the rest of your life as well (unless you do some massive body building ?). They represent the amount of damage a limb can get before being useless/destroyed.

The Pain points are one counter, like the Breath points, but represent how disturbed you are by the pain ... normally, you have 4 of them. And yes, you quickly lose them, and you quickly get maluses... Which is quite realistic, because to get pain points you have to almost lose a limb. You can also use this ounter for decease... because when you are sick, you don''t get hurt in any limbs necessarily, but you can''t do anything, this is well simulated by the loss of Pain points (which quickly give you maluses at ALL your tests).

Paul, the good thing about having different types of points, is that it doesn''t confuse different notions into one pool of ever growing points (namely Hit Points ... )
Fights with this system will get nasty only if both fighters really want to, otherwise you can just attack to stun the opponent, which is what happens anyway, because of the little amount of BP, and the fact that BP can be used to boost yourself when you fight (the adrenaline effect ).

you might say that 3 gauges would confuse the user (plus othere gauges for powers, magic, and whatnot).
But I believe the user is not supposed to be counting is points all the time, rather, a nice color/grpahic system would do. Think something like the damage display in Starcraft (where different limbs turn from green to red progressivly) for the Life points of the zones, think two icons that change color in the same manner for Pain and Breath. (of course, for the geeks, there would be a fully detailed panel, full of numbers...)

youpla :-P

(if only I was not on the modem, I would gladly show you the advantage of this sytem by mastering a little fight )

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Ahw, I believe i understand reasonably well. The BP''s are a messure of KO. The Pain Points would be a kind of physical morale and the life points are like Hit points (with the exception to D&D rules where if you went between 0 and -9 you were knock unconcious). Under this system, wouldn''t adrenaline increase your Pain points as well as you breath points?

Has anyone actually worked out what triggers adrenarine rushes. I''m thinking that it''s probably different for everyone. I know that you can get light to heavy adrenaline rushes. I was also wondering if the strength of an adrenaline rush would depend on your physical build.

I love Game Design and it loves me back.

Our Goal is "Fun"!

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Guest Anonymous Poster
I downloaded the basic rules for Simulacres (free at http://roliste.free.fr -in French) but I didn''t see the details about Pain points or hit location. Was this an expansion or supplement?

Anyone have a link?

Slightly tangent to the main discussion, I must say I like how the Simulacres game system places more emphasis on the non-physical elements than most.


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anonymous : the SangDragon was a background extension, and didn''t contain the optional rules for life and fighting, but it had the extended rules for magic, which I absolutely love (one spell, one skill)

paul : are you talking biology here ? I just noticed something funny, the Rage effect in Vampire (just played the demo) ... just like in the P&P RPG
As well, I am actually playing Darklands RPG (an old Microprose game). This one uses Strength as Life points and Stamina as Breath points, just like I described above. VEry cool to see that in a game made around 1991 (note, the game is available on abandonware sites, and you''ll to find the codesheet to play it without problem at darklands.net !)

Funny how you can still learn stuff from old ones ... now I just wonder why the heck all new games seem to be so much about bells and whistle, and less and less about ROLEplaying (well ... something similar)

youpla :-P

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