Topic: Character Generation

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  • #3284
    thenewromance
    Participant

    I could probably live without a dedicated representative, but I guess many people would like it. If it is only introduced as flavour, like a face and name on the “staff” screen, I don’t think it’d distract much from the game. It could, however, make people happy to have the option to choose a “placeholder” for themselves, even if it doesn’t influence the game at all mechanics-wise (or has only light application). No one is sad that changing armour colour in XCOM doesn’t add some sort of stat bonus, but it’s great to have it there.

    Of course, not descending into arbitrariness, as Screeg points out, will also be important. I am a firm believer that, in any kind of art work, a clear and authentic concept (even if it is more than weird) trumps acceptable-for-everyone “family fun”. I’d rather listen to a band playing through cheap microphones with a singer who can’t sing but who means it than to a perfectly produced all-star band of old rock stars.

    #3289
    Sky
    Participant

    Found a full pack of all the undead together. What a lovely bunch.
    Undead

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    #3301
    GOD
    Participant

    The devs’ vision is exactly what makes a game not only enjoyable, but truly memorable, the type of game people talk about for years (or decades, ie. X-Com). If the goal of making a game was to produce something everyone enjoys, all we’d have to play would be Candy Crush Saga and Angry Birds. Every allowance made on behalf of gaining a wider audience (allowing re-rolls, picking units from a list, etc.) dilutes the experience. In my opinion, in the end it won’t even result in more sales. If you want more sales, create a game that breaks the mold and does things differently, doesn’t give allowances for every type of player. A pure experience generates tons of word-of-mouth coverage, and draws in the casual gamers who might have been intimidated by the more roguelike experience. Making a vanilla game that goes halfway (hey, there’s a hardcore mode!) just doesn’t have the same impact on the community.
    I’m not saying the devs should or shouldn’t allow any of the suggested changes *BUT* to say “Let everyone play the game however they want! Who cares?” is no way to achieve great game design.

    Precisely. You either focus on mass appeal or on a specific tone, because if you try to do both the resultant mix appeals to nobody.

    #3317
    Alesch
    Participant

    Ladies and Gentlemen, I think I have a solution to this whole “Give me Character Customization/ Leave it for RNGesus to decide” thing. It isn’t an original solution, since I’m just going to point out how Paradox handled things in CK2 (and everyone and their dog loved CK2). Crusader Kings was mentioned earlier in the thread, sure, but no one mentioned that its Achievements were tied to its Ironman mode, which strictly forbade the Character Customizer, at least as I recall. I always thought that was an elegant solution to the conflict that seems to be going on in this thread.

    As I see it, there are the people who want to have control over the story that their game tells, and the people who want to beat up RNGesus even if it means both of their hands are tied behind their backs. The later crowd, in my experience, has a lot more overlap with the achievement hunters of the world than the former does. Tying the achievements to playing without any character customization gives an incentive toward playing with whatever junk characters the RNG gives you, while players that want to use custom characters likely won’t care. Heck, if you really want to take a page out of Paradox’s book you could even toss out character customization as a 5$ DLC (queue an entire forum’s worth of outrage here).

    As it is right now, I often find myself restarting a new game several times until I have a crew that I deem “playable”, and I doubt that I’m the only one who does this. That isn’t what a functioning system looks like, and if the main argument against incorporating some form of character customization is essentially “but that will make the game easier!” then I really think that locking the achievements away from people in playthroughs that use custom characters would nip that in the bud. After all, who cares if the game is easier for me, if it won’t mean that I can get the same “Congratulations on Winning the Game” picture more easily than the other guy.

    Everyone wins. I get to play with characters that I want to play with. Achievement hunters aren’t having their achievements devalued by “easy-mode” players.

    Seriously. Paradox already solved this. Do correct me though, if I am wrong.

    #3318
    lfish
    Participant

    As I see it, there are the people who want to have control over the story that their game tells, and the people who want to beat up RNGesus even if it means both of their hands are tied behind their backs. The later crowd, in my experience, has a lot more overlap with the achievement hunters of the world than the former does. Tying the achievements to playing without any character customization gives an incentive toward playing with whatever junk characters the RNG gives you, while players that want to use custom characters likely won’t care. Heck, if you really want to take a page out of Paradox’s book you could even toss out character customization as a 5$ DLC (queue an entire forum’s worth of outrage here).

    As it is right now, I often find myself restarting a new game several times until I have a crew that I deem “playable”, and I doubt that I’m the only one who does this. That isn’t what a functioning system looks like, and if the main argument against incorporating some form of character customization is essentially “but that will make the game easier!” then I really think that locking the achievements away from people in playthroughs that use custom characters would nip that in the bud. After all, who cares if the game is easier for me, if it won’t mean that I can get the same “Congratulations on Winning the Game” picture more easily than the other guy.

    Everyone wins. I get to play with characters that I want to play with. Achievement hunters aren’t having their achievements devalued by “easy-mode” players.

    Seriously. Paradox already solved this. Do correct me though, if I am wrong.

    Honestly I don’t think that most of the anti-customization people really care about achievements to any degree more than the pro-customization folks; it’s still about story telling, it’s just a desire for more open-ended storytelling created by mechanics and events rather than player fine-tuning. I certainly don’t care about achievements, and I’m more or less against customizing individual characters.

    For me personally, I think there should be a system in place so that people have some choice over the backgrounds of the initial brothers, but I don’t think there should be any ability to know or tweak the traits or stats of starting characters. Changing faces/hairstyles I’m also somewhat against, but don’t particularly care about it one way or the other. The frustration of multiple restarts is something that should be dealt with though. Both a purchase system or semi randomized ‘tiers’ based on difficulty sound like they would be good. I think founding brother perk should probably be removed as well.

    #3320
    Trig
    Participant

    As it is right now, I often find myself restarting a new game several times until I have a crew that I deem “playable”, and I doubt that I’m the only one who does this.

    Me too.

    #3338
    Jago
    Participant

    Ladies and Gentlemen, I think I have a solution to this whole “Give me Character Customization/ Leave it for RNGesus to decide” thing. It isn’t an original solution, since I’m just going to point out how Paradox handled things in CK2 (and everyone and their dog loved CK2). Crusader Kings was mentioned earlier in the thread, sure, but no one mentioned that its Achievements were tied to its Ironman mode, which strictly forbade the Character Customizer, at least as I recall. I always thought that was an elegant solution to the conflict that seems to be going on in this thread.

    This is what I meant with a campaign mode and a sandbox mode in another thread.
    -Campaign mode: deal with the cards you are given, earn something (achievements, ingame secrets)
    -Sandbox mode: control all variables you’ve got

    As it is right now, I often find myself restarting a new game several times until I have a crew that I deem “playable”, and I doubt that I’m the only one who does this.

    Me too.

    Never. Though I haven’t tried out hard, yet, on normal pretty much every crew is playable. Of course you’ll still die a couple of times and try again, but that doesn’t depend on your character backgrounds. It’s all about circumstances and skill. If werewolves attack you on your first day, even a great starting team won’t save you (I guess).

    #3340
    Sky
    Participant

    Nope, even a great starting team wont. Werewolves are beasts. The start is random in every difficulity. See no point in rerolling the starting members, since a bit later you can freely kick out and replace all who do not meet your requirements.

    #3347
    PsenBattle
    Keymaster

    Same for me. I just play with whomever I get. You have to adapt your tactics a little to your starting team. But after a few fights you should be all set no matter what bros you started with.
    Okay, if you start with two beggars and a vagabond it might be more difficult :) But even thats doable, happened to me before.

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    #3359
    Buce
    Participant

    I’m also for random system, this game and world is dark low fantasy, it’s about desperate poor commoners who don’t have any options to earn money in normal way, they have to risk their life for dangerous job. You shouldn’t identify with them separately, you should treat them as a group and human resources.If there was a character generator everyone would identify with that character and I guess that after his death most of players would load game to rescue his life. I even think that there should be only iron mode, save should be made automatically after leaving game :)

    #3366
    GOD
    Participant

    I don’t care for achievements one bit. They’re just a lazy way of trying to make it feel like the player has accomplished something, rather making them feel this way through their interaction with the mechanics. Imagine reading a book and the book going: YOU HAVE REACHED CHAPTER 2. GOOD JOB! What I do care about is cohesion and not putting in features that don’t fit the central themes of the game.

    Your starting gear actually has larger impact on the starting difficulty than the traits you get. Sure, you might be able find some really good combos if you could select them, but you can’t. That’s part of the point. The game shouldn’t encourage trying to minmax your starting party, because it is a waste of your time both thematically and practically. They’re not the main characters and the game mechanics should reinforce this.

    I can see why Crusader Kings 2 has a feature like that, but that is a very different game with different reasons for having it.

    Same for me. I just play with whomever I get. You have to adapt your tactics a little to your starting team. But after a few fights you should be all set no matter what bros you started with.
    Okay, if you start with two beggars and a vagabond it might be more difficult :) But even thats doable, happened to me before.

    One of my favourite random games was when I started on hard and got two servants and a miner for my company ‘Noblesse Oblige’. :P
    They actually kept surviving and the miner ended up with Captain and Rally the Troops. The servants as berserkers.

    #3371
    Buce
    Participant

    Your starting gear actually has larger impact on the starting difficulty than the traits you get. Sure, you might be able find some really good combos if you could select them, but you can’t. That’s part of the point. The game shouldn’t encourage trying to minmax your starting party, because it is a waste of your time both thematically and practically. They’re not the main characters and the game mechanics should reinforce this.

    I agree with GOD (even though I’m an atheist ;)). This is challenging game not for sissies, this game has opportunity to become legendary game because of cohesion project decisions. It should be more like roguelike game than easy game with load option. You have to play careful and you should take responsibility for your bad decisions. I would go further and after level up I would give random traits (you can only choose type of trait like utility, offensive, defensive).

    #3492
    thenewromance
    Participant

    More random and more ironman = usually more fun in the long run. It’s just that some people (like me, for example) are afraid of their own courage. When the opportunity to scum or cheese or influence arises, they will do so. Like addicts, they don’t really want to because they know it’s not that much fun ultimately, but they can’t help themselves. ;)

    Now, from a design viewpoint the question is basically “Do we help the addicts by giving out regulated prescription dope” or “Do we help the addicts with discipline and zero tolerance”? Both are valid, and if you will excuse the drug metaphor, both are actually used in the treatment of real addictions. You can’t really go wrong either way, but you’ll probably never do it 100% right either.

    #3498
    Xoatl
    Participant

    2. Choice over starting characters would make the game easier.

    There are already different difficulty settings, and nobody (sane) has a problem with that. Choosing an easier starting group is just another way of choosing an easier difficulty level. So no, not everyone would choose to do that, for the same reason not everyone plays every game on the easiest difficulty. But if someone wants to play the game on “easy” mode, why should anyone care?

    This is what it all boils down to, min-maxing takes away from the game, everyone will pick all the strong traits for the founding members and dominate. But if there was a point system or crowns for traits and starting equipment it’ll limit how much you can min-max. Making one amazing founding member will result in 2 really sickly weak greedy gluttonous etc members with poor starting backgrounds who will die easily. That’s min-maxing, and I would definitely do it, just to see the longeivity and heroic victories of that one supersoldier. But I also have other ideas, Farmer Sons, a pitchfork and torch wielding gang of stocky farmhands. Or the fragile and sickly yet vicious outcasts/murderers/refugees. I have played a couple of playthroughs where I purposefully handicapped myself in order to stick to a narrative. A grave robber nicknamed “Grave Garment” who only uses equipment from won battles and sports a skeleton hero shield to boot. Customization opens a range of stories for your company. Without have to reroll which is what I do.

    #4037
    El Rhinochtone
    Participant

    First of all, i havn’t been through the full post, so i might miss some things.
    Second, hi from france ! Please excuse some bad english (and never tell my teacher).

    For what i have seen, there is still an argument about “should or should not be characters customisation in the game ?” despite the fact that it seems very, VERY possible to get both. OK, some thinks it’s great (i’m one) and others that it’s game-killing. Let’s make both of them happy !
    About “how much customisation” though, i think it’s important to discuss about (and that’s exactly what you are doing. So… nevermind ?).

    I really love the “choose a background” one from sarissfoi. It imply some diversity and choice, and allows the dev to balance it if needed.
    The idea of having a non-fighter self could be good, but if he is never in danger i didn’t like it so much.
    I agree with the fact that a trait customisation would make the game easier, but a appearence customisation could even help in battle. I found myself to never remember who had which trait and who whas supposed to do what. Not a lot, and not enought for making it a problem in any way, of course, but i see a point in that.

    Do everyone agree on the concept of a “total appearence customisation and partial ability customisation of founding members” thing ? Just to make things clear, because i’m not sure if the arguemntation is about every customisation or just the ones you recruit. I would also say that the starting members doesn’t impact your game that much, mostly beacause the first thing you are doing is buying more crew and stuff. Of course, having one big dude and two useless sidekicks would be a great matter, if there wheren’t those four others randomly-generated guy who are indispensable on the beginning of the game.
    To resume my purpose (who doesn’t seem that clear >_<‘): Appearence customisation doesn’t impact the game, especially with a random button. A small and equilibred skill custom (ie : choosing background but not traits, chossing trais but not backgrounds…) won’t always make things easier (i do believe that the first three members aren’t generated the same way than the others). A customable starting gear would, but can be limited (as the one who can be found in our starting city is). Also, i’m not a fan of the “black or white” thing about family-friendly/concept. Life is made of compromise… and once again : “able/disable” buttons are our best friends !

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