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Wavinator

The Great "Conventions Which Must Go" List (RPG)

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Just thought this would be a fun design post... I'm drawing up a big list of nonsensical conventions that we've come to take for granted as standard in our cRPGs. Any joiners? Here's a start "Excuse Me Whilst I Rob You Blind" The citizen's cry for help! You stride into town as the lone champion of justice. In fact, you're so heroic that when you talk to NPCs and enter their homes, they have no problem with you rifling through all their worldly possessions and pocketing whatever you care to take. This is the old "pick up everything" convention left over from adventure games. It's a poor excuse for exploring, and it must go. "There can be only one!" NPC Bob started a bar fight with me. Now Bob's a jerk, but he's not a cold blooded killer! But because most cRPG game system are based on hitpoints with zero or below being death, in order to defeat good citizen Bob, you have to kill good citizen Bob. How heroic is that? Gotta go! Replace it with knockouts if you can't think of alternate ways to solve a dispute! "Please Save Us From Total And Complete Extinction! Oh, and that'll be 39,995 gold pieces..." Talk about respect! Here's a convention that must go! Nothing kills immersion faster than when you risk your neck for the land or people or whatever, come back in with only about an ounce of blood left in your whole body, and they charge you for healing... or swords... or whatever. If you're saving someone, they should bust their pixelated hides to help you do whatever it takes!!! The red carpet, their best autocannon or gold sword, and their daughter's (or sons, not to be sexist ) hand in marriage should be the least of what they offer! Games that want the reward / feedback mechanism buying systems provide should keep it seperate from the main quests, or better yet substitute a more enjoyable, believable mechanism elsewhere in the game. "Fedex Knights! We Deliver For You!" Gotta be the lamest convention that must go! You are the friggin' hero, yet in order to try to further exploration (or maybe it's just pure laziness) designers will code a bunch of to do tasks that NPCs give to the player. Why in heck didn't those sorry NPCs do it themselves?!?!? You might as well pick up the laundry and press the good linen for them while you're at it (after you've wiped off the goblin blood, that is). If go fetch gameplay is the order of the day, the least that should be done is to dress it up in a variety of ways. And please... keep the round trips reasonably short, would ya? These armored shoes are hard on my bunyons! ... any more? -------------------- Just waiting for the mothership... Edited by - Wavinator on April 22, 2001 4:13:11 AM

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Oh man, I soooo agree about charging you when you are saving their hides. Now, I can see them charging you if you are some nobody. But if you are "THE ONE", then they shouldn''t be all, "You are the only one that can save our world from eternal hell! What? You have 1 hp and want free health? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH! Go away!"

I remember comming across that problem when playing Gauntlet Legends for the N64 was that this wizard dude was telling me that only I could stop the demon, yet if I had 2 hp left, he''d still make me pay for health.

Creative time people, I suggest we remove the entire "THE ONE" thing and make players start off as nobodies. I mean, in Ultima Online, you don''t question the npcs charging you money, thats because you are a nobody, not the person who has been selected to fight the Ancient Wyrm single handedly, who is destroying towns. Personally, if you can''t keep getting equipment a challenge without setting uber high prices, remove the shops all together, and make quests to get items.

-Blackstream

Will you, won''t you, will you, won''t you, won''t you take my virus?

-The Mad Hacker

Blackstream''s Webpage

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Great topic !!! I''ve seen some of these problems in RGB(0,0,0)&RGB(255,255,255). Hell, I''m supposed to be a *lightning* GOD *thunder*, and those little punks keep ordering me around like I was Pizza Delivery or something.

some more nonsensical conventions:

Good ALWAYS beats EVIL in the end
WROOONG !! EVIL always beats GOOD in the end ! EVIL is hardworking, gets into trouble alot, has to fight for everything, but in the end, wins because its more intelligent, more fit to survive !!! *grin*


We''re 2 EVIL guys, we make an alliance, 3 minutes after we stab each other in the back
WROOOOONG !! NOONE will ever break an alliance with true EVIL, lest they face the consequences ! Example, in the "Usual suspects" movie, Keiser Soze had the complete loyalty of his henchmen.

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love this thread already... ´bout time someone sat down and collected all the garbage we coughed up in the last months
I´ll try a few:


I am the rock, I fear none

Why is it that i don´t have to be afraid of any monster anymore? First, I can load at every time, second, most monsters are dumb and not really a problem (i can remember wading through a whole goblin army like moses). And if they´re tough they are because they have more hp and dish out more damage.
Let there be smart monsters. Let the difference in size, hp and strenght be no more than 50% between lowly goblin, hero and troll. If there´s no armor, everyone dies from a sword in the gut. Also, let the players run away some time. If there are 20 goblins rushing towards you it does not matter how tough your armor is or how long you sword is... they are just going to swarm you and then a butterknife or a rock will be enough to finish off mr knight. (and it´s easy to implement too... once you´re surrounded you´re done).


Healing: one fits all, 5$ a pop

maybe a lot of you are going to disagree, but i for one would like more realism on this one. Getting fixed up after a fight is less trouble than going to the gas station. And usually your knight fights just as well with 5% health than 100%! I want specific damage, I want effects (what sir? an orc broke your arm? no, i´m afraid a band aid is not going to cover that... and you´re not going to do much fighting with that arm either). I´m not saying that players should die from infected ghoul bites, I don´t want them hospitalized for a month either... just let them hobble around for a while.. or force them to use their off-arm for once.


Combat Magic: the ultimate solution

there´s been a lot of discussion about this already... I´ll sum it up by saying: put the magic back in magick. In most games the use of magic happens more thoughtlessly than sex in a hippie commune.... I want magic to be powerful and mysterious.. and dangerous. Not just as a better club.


I´m so nice, there are sunrays shining out of my ass

Diodor, this is yours. In almost every rpg i´ve played the "right" path was clearly set before me. All shiny and bright. Sometimes there are pretended possibilites of being evil, but usually youre punished severely for being nasty. IMO all paths that lead to the solution should be valued equally in terms of good and evil... sometimes it might pay to be nice to people, sometimes it pays to tighten the thumbscrews a bit... If the goddamn farmer who has the seventh stone of power wants to give it to me in return for finding his cat, fetching wood for his oven and finally going to town to rescue his only daughter from the clutches of the local pimp I WANT CHOICES! I want to be able to (not saying that i necessarily would) take him by the neck and punch him until he´s glad to give me the damn thing.


ok, that´s all for now... flame away


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Speaking of choices, don''t pretend to give the user choices either. I remember playing Zelda 64, the first one, and talking to Zelda like this. Whenever she gave you a choice in the conversation, it forced you to take one anyways. Like this

Zelda: Do you want to deliver my letter?

Link : No.

Zelda: Oh come on please? Do you want to deliever my letter?

Link : No.

Zelda: Oh come on please? Do you want to deliever my letter?

Link : No.

Zelda: Oh come on please? Do you want to deliever my letter?

Link : Yes.

Zelda: Thank you

Stuff like that just irks me.

-Blackstream

Will you, won''t you, will you, won''t you, won''t you take my virus?

-The Mad Hacker

Blackstream''s Webpage

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Guest Anonymous Poster
There is a small design concern about the Walking Wounded (or fighting wounded) implementation.

It makes sense that player performance decreases with injury, but this quickly becomes a slippery slope. Small injuries lead to performance loss which leads to more injuries which leads to more performance loss....

Any difference in combat strength get magnified tremendously.

The constant performance is used to make the mechanics easier to balance.

JSwing

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You needn''t take localising damage to the extent of damaging the player more with attempts of attack. You don''t have to add that element of realism (as if it''d be fun anyway). What you can do, however, is cause the use of an arm to become sluggish or impossible... if both arms are disabled there are obviously going to be problems for the player, but I am sure they can kick...

"Come Back! I''ll bite your legs off"

I am getting numerous reminders of Monty Python in my head

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - The future of RPGs
Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche

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The slippery slope of progressive damage is cured with one easy solution. Like in real life - if your screwed up and hurt, AVOID FIGHTS! If I have a cast on my arm and Bubba picks a fight with me in the bar, I am NOT gonna start a fight... (maybe hit him with the cast??)

Landsknecht

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Unless you can cast ''Fireball Level ''[(C) Dwarfsoft 2001] and turn him to toast.

Only when a player feels like there are no more options are they likely to give up a fight. The only way to push them in this direction (away from fights) is if you have trained them to be used to avoiding conflict in the game world.

-Chris Bennett of Dwarfsoft - The future of RPGs
Thanks to all the goblins over in our little Game Design Corner niche

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Avoiding fights when you''re damaged isn''t a solution if you''re damaged (and you will be) during a fight. The slippery slope holds true; you go into a fight with full health, get injured, get performance degradation, get injured, etc. Besides, what if you get jumped while you limp home? "Hey, wait, I don''t want to fight, I''m hurt!". Having to do battle with a slow and injured player is frustrating and annoying, that''s why most games, from shooters to RPG''s, avoid doing do.

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