Author Topic: Thoughts about combat  (Read 3248 times)

Offline Nalgas

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #15 on: March 02, 2011, 05:23:21 AM »
Civilization IV was another game I loved, though, and it's about so much more than combat.  I'd say that combat is maybe 30% of the purpose in that game, too.  I certainly spend 70% or more of my time doing other things such as managing my expansion and economy, managing my cities, etc.  In fact I'd usually go out of my way to avoid fights except when I really needed to take something over, because I was able to progress my interests without having to fight constantly.  My uncle, on the other hand, I think spent a good 70% of his time fighting in Civ IV.  Honestly that strategy didn't work out overly good for him, but we were playing middling AIs and he had fun.  And my dad and I covered for him.

Wow.  I finally found the mythical/legendary person who plays Civ4 for the combat.  As great a game as it is, the combat is mind-bogglingly awful.  Even when I pick a civ/leader that only has combat bonuses (Japan, I think?) and tell myself I'm going for some flavor of military victory this time, it never lasts, because it's just so miserable having to build and manage 18 million units.  Even when I try to be aggressive, 90% of the time I end up winning some other way instead, and when I'm not attempting to play that way for a change I only ever have the bare minimum military needed to survive (bribing your neighbors to defend you from each other is just so much more cost-effective...which gives me the silly idea of paying skelebot A with technology or resources to kill skelebots B and C for me).

Offline Teal_Blue

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #16 on: March 02, 2011, 10:05:37 PM »
I am not entirely sure that this question fits here, but it does involve combat, and i didn't want to create a new thread as I might just be re-saying something that has already been said.

So, I read Chris's note on part of this thread,

- That said, a lot of the strategy of this game is not about direct combat at all.  It's about how you choose to affect the world with your larger decisions, and what choices you make in terms of customizing your own loadout, crafting, etc. -

And i wanted to ask, if there might be partner npc's? What i mean is I am really, really looking forward to all the crafting and stuff, that is what i like to do alot.  :)   And so, in order to survive, i wondered if i would need a partner npc that accompanies me into the world, or the wilderness, or where ever. Kinda like the Zenith Remnants, or the Children of Neinzul in AI War. Not really controlled by me, but still helpful none the less.  :)

I have had the unpleasant habit of asking questions that have been 'not' the right ones to ask, and i don't want to do that here, or get anyone, especially Chris or Keith upset, because i have all these weird ideas. But it seems it would be nice to have one character that is me and could craft away, and stay close to the camp in a new area, while my partner npc could sort of handle, or not handle the monsters or dangers. Though if you include poison thorns on bushes, or snakes in the grass, or poisonous insects and such then my partner npc might not last too long.

But it is a thought, hope its not to close to the things that are best not brought up now, but wanted to ask, just in case now was a good time.

Thank you,

:)

Teal




« Last Edit: March 02, 2011, 10:07:33 PM by Teal_Blue »
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Offline x4000

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #17 on: March 02, 2011, 10:33:55 PM »
Making friends with NPCs will be an integral part of the game, as they will fill your settlements and provide crafting services for you, as well as becoming your player-character after you die, among other things.  These NPCs will be... pretty loosely controlled in most cases.  You can suggest things to them, try to persuade them to do things, or even do favors for them so that they'll reciprocate, but you won't be ordering them around.  While you're gone from a settlement or wherever the NPC is if they aren't in a settlement yet, the NPC will do... whatever they want, for the most part.  But, through the magic of our "rapid aging" system, there can be hundreds or thousands of NPCs all nominally doing stuff, changing their little part of the world, while you're away.

However, they will never accompany you into the wilds, or into danger.  As with most Zelda games, or Crystalis, you'll be entirely on your own in battle.  The exception being, of course, co-op, when you can have a team of players all working together or at least in the same world at the same time (you don't have to stick together if you want to -- it's up to the players in question).
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Offline Teal_Blue

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #18 on: March 03, 2011, 01:05:35 AM »
Thank you.  I appreciate the nice answer. I am thinking that many of my questions I should probably hold onto until i get the game and actually play it. Then I can see how I should handle things in the game, it'll be a lot easier than my asking questions when i haven't even played it yet.

But thank you very much.

-Teal

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Offline x4000

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2011, 10:03:17 AM »
Not a problem at all.  My pleasure!
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Offline Reapy

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #20 on: March 09, 2011, 10:31:22 PM »
Just wanted to jump in here and ask some more about combat. First off the videos are looking nicer and nicer, slowing down the movement of things looks like a huge improvement, giving you time to do 'whatever' and also keeping the camera such that it is more in front of the player.  I remember kind of seeing that first video going, oh no, to looking at the latest one up there now thinking, wow I could def get into exploring that world.

Anyway so I was curious as to the sort of lore/tech level you were going to go with. Will there be melee style attacks, or guns, spells, mana? Will you be building weapons/traps etc?

I know you mentioned a zelda as an inspiration, I think I sort of get what you mean. Have you played secret of mana? I felt like that was one of the best of that 'style' of gameplay, it kept it sorta faster action and short encounters but still had a pretty good system going on under the hood with a lot of options.

Well I keep retyping this paragraph to try to rephrase here, I totally understand this is really early on in the game and obviously there is a lot being worked on that we haven't seen yet that will add aspects to the game, AND i know that the early on 'run at you and blow up enemy' is in place as a milestone more than a gamplay element, but I guess I wanted to lend voice that even if combat isn't a big part of the game, it is still going to be an important one.

I think something that might be worth thinking about is having some sort of cause/effect rules that drive combat and interactions with bad guys in general. An example might be say magicka in which all the elements can all play really well with one another, or even something such as the classic final fantasy rule of healing spells doing damage vs undead type enemies.

I'm rambling here, but the more I think about it, I think what the combat needs right now is a way for you to be able to stand your ground, either to knock something back, freeze it, or just take the damage thrown at you, or a fast dodge move or something. I guess the itch the video sends my way is kind of triggering memories of basically pulling in an mmo so to speak.

Ok take for example the recent dawn of war game, been playing that a bit, and at the harder levels, in some senses I find the game boring since what you are doing is basically creeping up to bad guys out of their anger range, dropping long range ordnance on them and/or drawing them into an overwhelming field of fire. The harder I make the game, the more I have to play the ranges and 'agro range' of the guys coming at me, the more I have to sit and wait for cooldowns to be up and wait for energy to go up between waves.

I'm jumping all over here, so will try to wrap it up. Not even sure my point, I guess in to say that running around kiting bad guys won't be fun, but I think you know that too :)

Either way I'm really looking forward to this game and I think you are doing something great and original here and I really hope to see this game grow into something special.

Offline x4000

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #21 on: March 10, 2011, 12:11:38 PM »
I don't think that kiting enemies is inherently un-fun, any more than what you describe in DoW was.  The key thing is that those aren't fun if they are the ONLY way to play, which I think is what you're really driving at. 

I, too, really was a huge fan of Secret of Mana back in the day, and I've beaten it at least four or five times, and played through the first half at least two dozen times.  That said, recently I find it harder to really enjoy, because the gameplay gets mildly same-y to me.  There's a lot of charging your weapons, and a lot of going through menus to find spells, etc.  By contrast, Link to the Past keeps things moving a bit more quickly, which is why I cite that as more of an example of what I'm going for here.

But in terms of combat, I aim to have more variety than any of the above.  Physical attacks and guns and such have already been confirmed elsewhere on these forums, and we'll also be doing stuff with the ability to block, etc.  Right now it's giving a skewed impression by just having one or two spells and a single enemy type, but that's just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what we plan to do.  Some enemies will indeed require kiting, others will require skillful blocking, others will require other styles of play.  Or you can avoid them if you don't like the sort of combat one specifically requires.

That's another reason Zelda is a good example, because each enemy type requires different tools, weapons, and tactics to take out effectively.  Some of them, like Darknuts in the later Zeldas for instance, do require a lot of kiting and dodging in fact.  Others require shielding and timing on physical strikes.  And so on.

Glad there's excitement about the game!
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Offline Nalgas

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #22 on: March 10, 2011, 12:33:16 PM »
I don't think that kiting enemies is inherently un-fun, any more than what you describe in DoW was.  The key thing is that those aren't fun if they are the ONLY way to play, which I think is what you're really driving at.

That's what I was thinking, too, but you beat me to it.  When it's your only option and you're forced to do it all the time for everything, it gets a bit old, but sometimes it can be really fun.

For me, it actually brings to mind Titan Quest.  Every now and then I start playing it again just to goof around, and I usually go for a fairly aggressive approach without a ton of kiting, whether I focus on melee or ranged attacks.  My most recent character was the exact opposite, though, just for variety.  Literally his only attack at the moment is laying traps, so I set up an ambush, walk up to a group of bad guys to piss them off...and then run away screaming like a little girl.  It's absolutely hilarious sometimes when they chase after me and end up getting mowed down like the opening of Saving Private Ryan, while I just stand there and watch.

Is it awesome?  Heck yeah.  Would it still be awesome if there were nothing else to the game?  Well, sort of, but not as much so, and I wouldn't still be occasionally playing it after all this time.

Offline Reapy

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #23 on: March 14, 2011, 04:10:56 PM »
Sorry I sort of did a drive by ramble plowing in on things I don't know too much about, and thanks for taking the time to answer!

But yeah that is a very nice way of summing that up, it's really the options that bring the combat out. With varied ways to come at obstacles in the game. I think for me personally I find the most fun in a game exploring the mechanics behind it and finding out how everything works. I know I don't represent a large segment of the population though. I do know that having some mechanics and variety behind the scenes still will keep people around, even if they don't quite understand why they keep coming back for more.

I think the reason in hindsight why I was first curious to bring up secret of mana (and I admit I came late to this game and played through on an emulator a few years back) vs zelda was that what struck me as interesting in secret of mana was the zelda 'style' but the length of battle was slightly longer, and maybe that is too long. Also btw I will mention link to the past is my fav zelda game, but I guess when I think of the game the enemies were not particularly memorable, but that could be since they simply respawned because of the screen moving.

I guess if you are able to somehow control or understand why enemies exist in a particular place and can control that by say even finding their spawn location and destroying it, or something overly complex like say introducing a new monster that might eventually kill them off and take over, would perhaps make them memorable.

Anyway again thank you for replying, I'm pretty sure you guys have volumes of great ideas anyway, and as I said before am looking forward to seeing what ends up down on 'paper'.


Offline x4000

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #24 on: March 14, 2011, 04:41:56 PM »
Sure thing!
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Offline Mattressi

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #25 on: March 26, 2011, 07:43:20 AM »
I'm not sure if you've spoken about this before, but I've been wondering whether you'll actually use the mouse for combat in AVWW. In the videos, it seems that attacks go in the direction you're facing, rather than any direction on the screen (indicating the mouse isn't used to direct attacks).

I think mouse-directed attacks give much more variety to the types of attacks and spells which can be used (for example, casting some kind of force-field dome around an enemy or casting a barrier somewhere in the distance) and make combat more interesting.

Offline x4000

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #26 on: March 26, 2011, 11:29:07 AM »
The mouse isn't supported at all in the actual in-game parts. This one is designed for keyboard or gamepad. You can target enemies, however, which allows you to fire in more than just your facing compass direction. I know some folks really like mouse based targeting, but that's really a different style than we're going for here.
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Offline Mattressi

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #27 on: March 26, 2011, 12:27:42 PM »
The mouse isn't supported at all in the actual in-game parts. This one is designed for keyboard or gamepad. You can target enemies, however, which allows you to fire in more than just your facing compass direction. I know some folks really like mouse based targeting, but that's really a different style than we're going for here.

Oh yeah! Sorry, I completely forgot about the targeting feature. I think I'd still rather mouse-based attack direction, but I'm perfectly happy with an enemy targeting system. Thanks for the quick response :)

Offline x4000

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #28 on: March 26, 2011, 07:52:55 PM »
My pleasure. :)
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Offline Castruccio

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Re: Thoughts about combat
« Reply #29 on: March 27, 2011, 11:03:33 AM »
The mouse isn't supported at all in the actual in-game parts. This one is designed for keyboard or gamepad. You can target enemies, however, which allows you to fire in more than just your facing compass direction. I know some folks really like mouse based targeting, but that's really a different style than we're going for here.

The implication of your remarks about the controls in this thread and other threads is that the game will play better with a USB controller than it will with a keyboard and mouse.  From a sales perspective, however, this seems like an imprudent choice for an indie developer.  Is it wise to design an indie PC game that requires customers to purchase an additional peripheral in order to enjoy the game as the developers envisioned it?  Many mainstream gamers are already skeptical about purchasing indie titles, and it seems to me like designing the game to work best with controller support amounts to putting an additional hurdle in front of already skeptical buyers.  

Now, those of us who love your games and who post on these forums will be glad to buy a controller if that's what it takes to enjoy the game as you envision it (with the nimble fingers you mention above), but if you want this title to be as big as AI War shouldn't you be removing potential hurdles for purchasers instead of adding hurdles?  I would bet that most PC Gamers don't own controllers because  most PC games don't require them.  In other words, I wonder whether you aren't developing a kind of console game for the PC game market, and whether this fact might hurt the mainstream appeal of AVWW on the PC platform.  As it stands, AVWW could cost as much as $45 to properly or fully enjoy  (assuming the game is around $20 and the controller is around $25). 
« Last Edit: March 27, 2011, 11:07:17 AM by Castruccio »