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About Bigdeadbug

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  1. Bigdeadbug

    No Diablo 3 Threads?

    I can see it discouraging people from treating Diablo 3 as a way to generate money simply because there's no chance they could make it big by finding a single rare item. Less people seriously farming will mean less competition for the actual farmers. They may indeed prefer a much higher cap/none at all, but it isn't necessarily bad for them. There is also a charge for posting items up on the RM AH (about a dollar iirc) to stop people posting items if they don't plan on selling it.
  2. Bigdeadbug

    No Diablo 3 Threads?

    The issue I see with the concept in its current form is that it is only really viable for those who already make money from these sorts of games (aka gold farming businesses). The drop rates along with the 30% cut, $250 cap and limit to 10 auctions at one time mean only those with multiple account and multiple users will be able to generate any decent level of income from the game. It all results in a system that isn't really designed to give the long term player a way to make a decent amount of money from their playtime, but instead a system for the developers to get a cut from the already established gold farmers.
  3. Bigdeadbug

    Story's from MMOS

    I wouldn't say the storyline in MMOs are bad, in fact some of them have been very good (so yes some of the stories could be converted to work in other games). Their weakness stems from how the stories are told to the player (most often via text) which just doesn't work in a game were you're expected to play for such long periods of time.
  4. Bigdeadbug

    League of Legends Stage Concept

    Before I would give any detailed feedback (although I'm not a LoL player really so I'm not sure how good any feedback would be) I would really advise going over the image in PS or paint and quickly drawing on the fog, lanes, any other points of interest along with annotations. That will at least give people a better idea of the level without having to download the .exe . Also were did you get your inspiration from? and did you do research into other MOBA games and their level design?
  5. It's worth pointing out that games like Majesty tend to have their own special kind of frustration that goes hand in hand with the design. I lost count of the number of times I quite those games because of the lack of control over the heroes resulted in some catastrophic failures. Heavy reliance on a games AI to carry out the players will, without having some sort of override function, is one of those ideas that's both bloody great and bloody awful at the same time.
  6. Bigdeadbug

    Kill The NPC

    In single-player RPGs the bonus for the player is that they don't accidentally stop themselves from finishing the game/having to redoing content. In multiplayer RPGs it has the benefit of limiting griefing. Another player can't stop you from handing in a quest by killing the Q giver. Personally I prefer having killable NPCs, it makes the whole thing more believable and less "gamey". Although in single player games it goes hand in hand with a decent autosave system.
  7. For a single-player RPG I'm slightly sceptical. If you're talking about having a totally "normal" character who constantly plays second/third/fourth fiddle to everyone else and isn't at all important in the story then I can imagine it would be very hard to create a compelling reason for a person to keep playing. The player would end up as nothing more than an onlooker. On the other hand if you going for more of real life simulator "your nothing special, but important in your own little world." then I don't don't see why it wouldn't work. Although you're not really changing much around, the player is still the protagonist and it still vital to the story, its just your talking about "staying alive on the street of Victorian London" instead of "Kill the dragon and save the known world". The problem here is that you would have to have a well crafted story, unlike most games you couldn't rest on the premise of the story to keep someone engaged. Oblivion did something like this. For the main quest the prince played the protagonist instead of the player. Yes the player was important, but it was the prince who was the true hero at the end. It really didn't work that well from what I remember and is probably a good example of how to get it wrong. For multiplayer RPGs (whatever their scale) it's a good idea. It gets around the whole "Why are there a load of other One True Saviour's Of The World and why am I having to rely on their help?".
  8. Well the main difference between the two from what I can see (along with what Suspense said) is that Action Adventure games involve a large amount of (often complex) puzzle solving when compared to Action RPGs. Zelda specifically is a bit of a sticky one. It does have a RPG bent, but those features aren't dominant (which tends to happen a lot come to think of it).
  9. Bigdeadbug

    Shameless fan service

    Its very nature means that fanservice tends to cheapen whatever work its included in, its pretty much unavoidable. That doesn't meant it necessarily bad though, it works well in moderation, especially if it has some (reasonable) reason for being present. Its when a developer constantly uses it or uses it completely the wrong situation that it becomes a problem for me personally.
  10. Bigdeadbug

    How to design for a target audience?

    Acharis makes a very good point. Designing the game for yourself is the best way to make sure you hit a target audience (i.e. you and anyone like you). It also helps to keep you motivated. Unless you have the backing of a major publisher/big money/research institutions you won't be able to conduct effective research into your target audience. Even with that kind of money behind you it may not even work. If you really wanted to do some primary research the cheapest way would be surveys posted over things like forums (dependent on the target audience of course). There are also a lot of secondary sources in the form of academic research that would probably provide much more reliable data. The problem with that would be finding research conducted on your target audience which isn't out of date. Having said all that it is highly unlikely that either of these options will provide enough information to base the design of a game off of. This isn't to say you can't ask prospective players to test out the game for you through development. That would probably be a more successful and practical route to take for the vast majority of developers.
  11. Bigdeadbug

    Starting a team as a Game Designer?

    Creating levels in a game editor and going for level design positions seem to be the most direct route to get a design esq role (and then moving to the position of game designer at a later stage). Having said that I don't think they're the best way to show off game design skills. They're more showing that you could design to a brief. Mods seem to be a better route to take when showing off design skills. SC2 is great if you want to make a semi conversion mod, basically a new game using Blizzards assets. What may be a more viable option are rebalancing mods, these seem to be especially common for grand strategy games. They do require some sort of coding though, but they can be a fairly simple way for a designer to showcase themselves. I wouldn't personally use game design courses to base what you should or should not be showing/doing. That is primarily because they are academic and as a result they focus on the research/theory side of games. That is if they aren't really programming/art courses masquerading as game design courses. Although valuable in some respects I can't see most Indie teams seeing the value in your 5000 word essay on the apparent use of game theory and behavioural psychology in a modern RTS. That is so true. From personal experience I was always attracted to teams/leads that had at least some complete project under their belt. When joining a team it seemed to play less of a part though, in those cases it wasn't to much completed projects, but examples of work (even from uncompleted games). I was never attempting to join a group as a designer though. There is definitely an issue with supply and demand. I'm not sure if its actually real, i.e. there really are less actual programmers than actual designers, or if we just perceive it that way, in part because of the large number of "fake" designers (if it's even possible to make the distinction). It certainly seems to result in a world were amateur designers feel they have to go above and beyond to prove themselves. Although I can't help but feel that's also in part down to people viewing them as an "ideas man" and how (at least western) society values those people. A similar thing also happens with 3D modellers/artists with heavy conversion mods. I.e. an apparent lack of artists compared to the number of projects needing them.
  12. Bigdeadbug

    Theory: players don't know what they want

    It also varies from player to player. Even the classic "grind fest" is seen by some players to be fun. Developers have become much better at masking the grind by making you do more engaging activities and there is defiantly a distinction between lazy game design and good game design. Then again the techniques used seem to age poorly in a lot of cases so it may just be a case of the game, and by extension its design, being old.
  13. Bigdeadbug

    Theory: players don't know what they want

    @Legendre A developer is essentially creating periods of play that are potentially not enjoyable for the player. That may not be a concious decision by the developer (and sorry if my original wording made it seem like I was implying it was), instead they would probably view it as a way to better engage the player in the game. To do this they will face the player with a challenge, one that they can feasibly, but easily, overcome. In the case of a game like SC2 this challenge is predominantly a test of skill, while in the case of an MMORPG grind it is predominantly a test of dedication. This challenge will undoubtedly be seen as unpleasant by part of the player base and as a result you are creating periods of play which are not fun from that players point of view. When the player overcomes these challenges they get a sense of achievement that would otherwise not be there without said challenges. In the case of SC2 this does in fact mean that the games a player loses can help provide a much more satisfying and enjoyable experiences for them when they win. It is not a case of making the game enjoyable all the time but instead making it enjoyable most of the time. [There is of course a lot more to it than just that and what you or I said are not mutually exclusive by any means, the periods of unenjoyable play server to create a more entertaining experience for the player overall.]
  14. Bigdeadbug

    Theory: players don't know what they want

    I posted an explanation of why SC2 and similar games are not designed to have periods of play time that would be seen as not as enjoyable. And why grinding sections of an MMORPG significantly differs from "losing many matches consecutively".[/quote] Actually they are designed to have periods of play that are not as enjoyable. Specifically SC2's ladder system is designed so that a player will on average loose 50% of all their matches. There's is a reason for this of course, like you said above, always winning is not fun for the majority of players and making sure they experiences periods of loosing makes those periods were they win that much better (there are other bonuses to this as well). The same is true for grinding within MMORPGs, without it players won't feel the sense of accomplishment from reaching certain goals. In both cases they are important element in that genres design, without which the genre would not be A the same and B quite as enjoyable. There is of course a fine balancing act with such elements within a game which is were good design comes into the equation. Well, if I make an FPS and say I consider it to be an RTS, would you agree with me?[/quote] Show me an well thought out justification for calling said FPS an RTS and I will call it one. According to your link, ArenaNet says the differences between their "CORPG" and MMORPG are: 1) instances 2) fast travel 3) emphasis on player skill 4) optional pvp. Not really any different from MMORPGs like WoW.[/quote] There are a number of points that GW devastates from MMORPGs enough for it not to be justified as one. I admit some of the ones used are really marketing buzz words that reflect the time at which the game was developed, but it was the best example I could find in the short time I had. The primary way in which is differs from MMORPGs is indeed its heavy use of instancing, the only "persistent" portions of the world are really virtual lobbies everything else is generated as and when players need it. That alone is reason enough not to put it into the MMORPG genre in much the same way you wouldn't consider Rise of Immortals an MMORPG. To be honest I am not sure why it is important to carefully divide games into genres? Genres are loose terms often used just to simplify conversations. Is there any benefit to gain from setting hard and fast rules on what defines an MMORPG and then making sure the game you design fit all these rules?[/quote] The most important benefit of using genres, and having strong definitions for them, is the way it allows for stronger academic research to be conducted into games. It's vitally important to know what you should/could directly compare a game to, what games your finding can be applied to and provide the reader a quick/easy way to know what you are discussing. Its part of the reason you are seeing the development and use of the "theme-park MMORPG" along with the "sandbox MMORPG". There are also other benefits, such as allowing players to know what to expect from a game. What happens when I coin a new genre "MORPG" - Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game, and then say that Guild Wars 1/2 and World of Warcraft are both MORPGs?[/quote] Nothing really, in fact I seem to remember it being used before for the multiplayer portions of RPGs like Neverwinter Nights 2. The genre would be very general thought which would limit its use, the games it encompasses would have very little in common. Its the same principle as saying a game is part of the shooter genre, all that tells me is that the game involves shooting something. Describing a game as that may help in a very general conversation, but in most cases saying it is a Tactical FPS or Cover based Third person shooter would be better.
  15. Bigdeadbug

    Theory: players don't know what they want

    @Legendre The point was that SC2 and similar games in that competitive multiplayer genre have periods of play time which would be seen as not as enjoyable. Much in the same way as the grinding sections of an MMORPG are viewed. To seriously complain about core elements of a genre (whether they are seen as positive or negative) shows a lack of understanding of the genre and by extension, in my opinion of course, is an instance were a player is not entirely sure what they want or what they want is not inline with what they can feasibly have. ArenaNet themselves consider GuildWars a CORPG (Competitive Online Role-Playing Game). A discussion as to why this is the case really warrants its own thread.
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