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Levelling up and the importance of being wealthy  XML
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Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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I have a game-balance suggestion regarding the current level-up system, where many of the benefits of the levelup are dependent upon the statistics of the character at the moment they levelled - specifically, Health increase, Energy increase, Practices, and who knows what else. I propose that these values be calculated dynamically instead of simply being set at the levelup (except for practices, for obvious reasons). This is intended to prevent new players from 'ruining' a character simply because they do not possess the means or knowledge to cover themselves in cobalt and ruby. If energy and Health values are calculated using the formula (levelup increase x level) (cont'd)
Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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(cont'd from last post)
<BR>
and practices gained are not equal to INT value at levelup but rather are gained at a constant rate per level (say, for instance, 15 / level), then I believe that characters will be much more balanced and (eventually) happy. two level 16 characters will be hypothetically equal, their strengths based on their current (not past) items. Thoughts? I know this is a tricky issue, and complicated to implement, but I strongly believe that it will be for the best and am eager to discuss it.
Michael Rathbun



Joined: 2003.10.28 00:00:00
Messages: 63
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Yes, I agree completely. Well, maybe not entirely - I think that your practices/health/energy gained on level up should be affected some by your INT and CON, but not by the boosts given to you by your items. (Of course, I also think there should be a base rate given, then "bonus" practices/health/energy based on what your non-item attributes are when you level up.)
Something else to consider is the suggestion of getting a number of points to put into your attributes. I know this may push TC more towards the traditional RPG, which we definitly want to avoid.
Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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But I do like the idea on increasing attributes - sure it's traditional, but a few mechanisms can be put in place to prevent the min/maxing abuse that traditional RPGs often suffer, such as having the points accrue unspent upon levelling (like practices) and then have them be spent by performing various activities - such as dance lessons for Dex, or any number of things, and limits could be imposed to prevent a person from strongly favouring one form of growth over another.
Lisa Chau



Joined: 2003.06.02 00:00:00
Messages: 415
Location: Kalaheo, Kauai, HI
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I disagree. If every character receives the same attribute boosts at level the characters will tend to be all alike. The current system allows players to decide which attributes they want to emphasize on a character-by-character basis.

Chiensha, Moorea, Vicodin, Xanax, Zoloft.
Lisa Chau



Joined: 2003.06.02 00:00:00
Messages: 415
Location: Kalaheo, Kauai, HI
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IMO it would be more interesting if the characters were to pool their resources. I'll loan you my int gear at level if you'll loan me your con gear.

Maybe we just need more players for this to be practical. Anyway I think this is more in the direction of group play / group challenges and I like it for that reason.


Chiensha, Moorea, Vicodin, Xanax, Zoloft.
Michael Rathbun



Joined: 2003.10.28 00:00:00
Messages: 63
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It's true that if characters were to recieve the same attribute boost at level all the characters would tend to be alike, which we want to avoid. What I'm suggesting is points be given at level to the player to distibute to an attribute(s) of their choosing. This is just like an extension of character creation - the player is given a certain number of points to distribute among attributes. This would allow for character change based on events in the triad city universe, and ultimately, quite a bit more customization.
Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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Well, I certainly agree that group play is what we're striving for here, but I don't think that the current system requires it more than the suggested one - and the current one ends up alienating quite a few new players, the most essential component of group play. As for the loaning of equipment, that's definitely what I think we should go for - but should characters suffer forever because they couldn't find a pair of ConPants at levelup time? dynamic calculation saves the hassle of juggling ruby and cobalt items at levelups - instead, people will simply assemble outfits to suit their tastes at that moment. The current system can be confusing, and ultimately, a little frustrating when one discovers that their levelups have done more harm than good because they weren't covered in cobalt.
Michael Rathbun



Joined: 2003.10.28 00:00:00
Messages: 63
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Yes, it would be easier to level up low level characters effectively if there were more players, alas...
I do like the way that it encourages group play/challenges, however, I don't like that Con and Int gear are necessary for you to put on at level up to be effective. It makes characters have basically the same statistics, in the end, (well, practices/health/energy) which I feel doesn't reflect a character's customizability. No matter what kind of character you create, they are going to want to have a large health and energy reserves, as well as a lot of practices. This means that many characters simply carry around bags of equipment that they put on during level up. I think it's a little silly, really. Of course, group play would still be encouraged if it were calculated dynamically, as a player would want the equipment best suited for his or her role.
Lisa Chau



Joined: 2003.06.02 00:00:00
Messages: 415
Location: Kalaheo, Kauai, HI
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My response was to Sascha's proposal, which seems to be somewhat different than yours. But, I disagree with yours as well. I don't believe that arbitrary attribute increases would equal customization, and I'm certain that permanent attribute increases of any form would rapidly unbalance the game world.

Chiensha, Moorea, Vicodin, Xanax, Zoloft.
Lisa Chau



Joined: 2003.06.02 00:00:00
Messages: 415
Location: Kalaheo, Kauai, HI
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I haven't had the same experience as you. I have a dozen characters and none has the same practices/health/energy as the other.

For example my level 17 Thief has a zillion practices, good dex, and every skill available. But his health/energy is only around 300. My level 11 Warrior has about 800 health/energy but is dumb as a post, can barely keep up with his weapon skill and Parry. Aside from the Role differences I have to play these guys really differently from each other. They require their own strategies.

To me this does seem to reflect character customizability.

I think it's likely that if arbitrary attribute boosts were implemented it would lead to characters becoming more alike, rather than less.

Chiensha, Moorea, Vicodin, Xanax, Zoloft.
Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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Well, as I understand it, they wouldn't be arbitrary, they'd be selected by the player - how much more customized could it be? - and perhaps small permanent boosts could reduce the massive reliance on equipment that currently holds sway, although I agree that unbalance is an issue.
Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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Well, Ive found that the only reason that my thief types ever lag behind in energy or my warrior types lag in experience is because I'm too lazy to juggle and wear the required equipment come levelup time. Furthermore, if your warrior has 800 energy by level 11, imagine if you were a new player with a warrior that had about 120 or so? quite possible, and utterly beyond correction - that person will have to abandon their character and start all over. If values were calculated dynamically, then fighters will still have high energy, thieves high dex - and they won't have to suffer any mistakes forever.
Sascha Lecours



Joined: 2003.10.24 00:00:00
Messages: 446
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Also, the current system does allow people to "customize" their energy/health/practices to the extent that they own a lot of stuff, but the improvements are totally unequal from person to person, leading to massive imbalances in some cases (Kaga and Luciano come to mind), whereas if stat points are assigned to all characters at an equal rate (and it could be something small, like one point every three levels, with the caveat that no stat can receive two boosts until two others have been assigned or something to promote realism), then all charcters would be created equal and customiztion would be in the hands of each player's imagination - not their bank account.
Lisa Chau



Joined: 2003.06.02 00:00:00
Messages: 415
Location: Kalaheo, Kauai, HI
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Isn't inequality from person to person the very essense of 'customization'? I've been using 'customization' to mean differentiation between characters so for me your point about improvements being unequal from character to character is a good thing, while the proposals in this thread are bad.

I think my basic disagreement is that I don't find attributes or eq to be as important as they're made out to be here. For example, my main Thief doesn't own much, everything he has fits into one daypack, and he's only got 290 max health. But he's doing great, he's one of the highest-level Thieves. I have to play him in a way which maximizes his strengths while minimizing his weaknesses. Whereas I have another Thief who's con is better but whose wis is so low she can't meditate to save her life. So I have to play her differently. To me this is a big part of what it means to play differentiated characters rather than homogenized ones. I like the inequality you point to, I think that's how the game helps us make our characters different from each other.

Chiensha, Moorea, Vicodin, Xanax, Zoloft.
 
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