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QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Sat Jun 13, 2015 9:54 am

When players go offline, many games artificially protect all their buildings and stuff. I don't particularly agree with this thinking, I think players should be given the tools to defend their holdings while offline. This is something I've been thinking about a lot regarding our game design, and something that has come up a few times in the huge thread I posted on MMORPG.com. Have a look at this response:

It seems you very much like building and feel your investments should be protected no matter what. I don't particularly agree with this for my vision of the "perfect" sandbox game as that doesn't speak "freedom" to me.. Factions will allow you to hire NPCs to protect your investments while offline, and we've kicked around the idea of having certain servers that are only up for like 6 hours a day for those who only play at certain times every day. Do you have any other suggestions for systems to protect your buildings and territory while offline?


Depends on what type of player you want to attract, as well as how niche of a niche you want to be. As these types of systems generally lend themselves better to the underhanded player, than those who'd like to promote a positive player environment. Case in point being games like Shadowbane, or other games of it's ilk. Even SWG's base system to a lesser extent. While the system offers something that could lead to a healthy PVP environment, more often than not it simply becomes a game of cat and mouse, late night city sieges (while those losing aren't even online), running from real fights (only fighting in massive zergs), harassment of newbs, etc... Freedom is a great feeling, problem is freedom also means enjoyment at others expense. This leads to retention problems.


So I thought on this some more, and I agree that taking stuff from someone who is offline is absolutely no fun and should be heavily discouraged, but still allowed.

What if we made it harder for someone to take territory or destroy buildings and other things from a player who is offline? We can do this by spawning some "shades" when you are resting or offline? These would be AI controlled entities which would have similar skills to your own player and would defend near where you are resting at. We could make them quite a bit stronger then the player.

What you think?
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Khranos » Sat Jun 13, 2015 2:33 pm

The shades idea sounds like a double-edged blade. It would definitely help protect your holdings while still making it possible to raid. The main issue I see is if the player logs out on the edge of their territory, and any newer or un-defended players not even interested in raiding are then killed just for passing by. That could be rectified by allowing the shades to attack only if somebody attacks something associated with the faction, gets too close to a building/chest, or gets past a wall. However, that just sounds like a logistics nightmare solely in theory.

A counter suggestion I just thought of might be to create shades that directly clone all of the offline players with no extra power added. However, in addition to this, you might fortify all buildings and walls in that settlement by 2, 3, maybe even more times their inherent value. That'll make it harder for them to get in and break doors/locks and such, while still dealing with the approximate power of the faction in its entirety. I feel this will still encourage low level faction raiding, since I could see shades pretty much locking out all but the toughest factions from attempting to raid the smallest of offline settlements.

Either option sounds like it'd work much better than others games in the genre, however.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Jetcutter » Sat Jun 13, 2015 2:57 pm

Khranos wrote:The shades idea sounds like a double-edged blade. It would definitely help protect your holdings while still making it possible to raid. The main issue I see is if the player logs out on the edge of their territory, and any newer or un-defended players not even interested in raiding are then killed just for passing by.


Then set a radius around the "protected property". I see your concern. Let passer by , be passer by. But once they enter the "radiai" of property protection, they are attacked ( but not pursued ), up to a set radius of the protected "dwelling". Sort of a virtual, Electric Fence.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Sat Jun 13, 2015 10:18 pm

Khranos wrote:The shades idea sounds like a double-edged blade. It would definitely help protect your holdings while still making it possible to raid. The main issue I see is if the player logs out on the edge of their territory, and any newer or un-defended players not even interested in raiding are then killed just for passing by. That could be rectified by allowing the shades to attack only if somebody attacks something associated with the faction, gets too close to a building/chest, or gets past a wall. However, that just sounds like a logistics nightmare solely in theory.

A counter suggestion I just thought of might be to create shades that directly clone all of the offline players with no extra power added. However, in addition to this, you might fortify all buildings and walls in that settlement by 2, 3, maybe even more times their inherent value. That'll make it harder for them to get in and break doors/locks and such, while still dealing with the approximate power of the faction in its entirety. I feel this will still encourage low level faction raiding, since I could see shades pretty much locking out all but the toughest factions from attempting to raid the smallest of offline settlements.

Either option sounds like it'd work much better than others games in the genre, however.


I was thinking have the shades be the same strength as the player first as well, but AI will never be as good as a player, so I think you would have to add some strength to them for it to be fair. And maybe we can set them to completely defensive? Only kill on sight players / faction members very close to the shades will be attacked?

Also will need to prevent players from logging out to get the shades available to them, and also prevent it in offensive uses.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Khranos » Sat Jun 13, 2015 10:46 pm

TheeLord wrote:prevent players from logging out to get the shades available to them, and also prevent it in offensive uses.


It is true about the AI, I'll have to agree with the added power.

In terms of limiting abuse, maybe they will only appear 10 minutes or so after you leave, so you can't just log out and unleash a pile of domination on whatever you're fighting. And, once dead, they might have a lengthy respawn so you can't just keep reusing them? And, maybe, they'll only have a lifespan of a day (maybe more) so that way active factions can stay protected (since some people can only access games like this every couple days, even if only for a couple minutes), but the ones which are abandoned won't stay impenetrable for the server's duration.

Either way, I'm sure it can be agreed upon that the process shouldn't be instantaneous and unlimited.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby whiskers434 » Sat Jun 13, 2015 11:18 pm

hhmm not sure about your character coming back as an npc, it is do able but its not that common a feature in mmo's so...

was more thinking along the lines of your pets protecting you
think a reset and wipe will fix that...
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Triadian » Sun Jun 14, 2015 1:34 am

whiskers434 wrote: it is do able but its not that common a feature in mmo's so...


so.... that sounds like the best reason for us to do it :P :thumbsup:
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby whiskers434 » Sun Jun 14, 2015 2:02 am

ok so while your offline u become an npc

What does/can this npc do?

Should it just stay where u logged off and only defend its self or should it function like any other npc going about doing task assigned to it by the faction etc
think a reset and wipe will fix that...
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Sun Jun 14, 2015 4:44 am

whiskers434 wrote:ok so while your offline u become an npc

What does/can this npc do?

Should it just stay where u logged off and only defend its self or should it function like any other npc going about doing task assigned to it by the faction etc


Literally just stand around where you were, I'm envisioning a ghostly version of the player. This would seem to compliment the NPC defenses pretty well IMO.

Khranos wrote:In terms of limiting abuse, maybe they will only appear 10 minutes or so after you leave, so you can't just log out and unleash a pile of domination on whatever you're fighting. And, once dead, they might have a lengthy respawn so you can't just keep reusing them? And, maybe, they'll only have a lifespan of a day (maybe more) so that way active factions can stay protected (since some people can only access games like this every couple days, even if only for a couple minutes), but the ones which are abandoned won't stay impenetrable for the server's duration.


All good suggestions IMO!
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Triadian » Sun Jun 14, 2015 9:52 am

i think we should call them spirits and have them dressed in white and have the ability to float a few inches off the ground with no walking animations :P
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby whiskers434 » Tue Jun 16, 2015 1:54 am

what about traps?
think a reset and wipe will fix that...
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Tue Jun 16, 2015 4:25 am

whiskers434 wrote:what about traps?


Traps would be cool vs NPCs, but against players, I assume players will want to set out turrets or something like that? we'll need to test some ideas when we get to that point to see what level of realism / playability feels best.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby RajCaj » Thu Jul 02, 2015 5:08 pm

Forgive my ignorance on the game...I'm still learning about the features & intended direction.

The original question seems to ask how do you protect your property & stuff while logged off(assuming stuff means the stuff you have in storage, not the stuff on your person).

First question I have is....is it necessary to make a player's city / assets able to be sieged at all times? If so, then yes....you'll need some mechanic to make it "fair" for the folks that have to sleep, work, cook, etc.

If not, then you can mitigate the risk with offline player's assets being targets for raids by coming up with a system that sets specific time intervals the faction's assets are able to be sieged. This will give players a heads up for when they will need to be logged in to defend their assets, while still allowing for opposing factions to conquer & siege territory.

Ultima Online's faction system allowed for factions to wrestle control of cities from other factions by making the cities open for "siege" in 2 week intervals. A faction would steal an item from one of the cities in the game and bring that item back to their faction's base. That faction would have to hold that item in their base for 24hrs to take control of that city for 2 weeks...where they can then set taxes, set traps for opposing faction members & faction guards to help fight opposing faction members.

The 2 weeks of control & 24hrs to hold the city sigil sets some finite time frames for people to work off of when scheduling / planning time in the game to defend / siege.

Lineage 2 was even more rigid with their controlled sieges, but still worked out pretty good. Alliances / Clans could sign-up to siege one of many castles in the game....with sieges for a castle happening on a specific day on the weekend, and only for a 2hr-3hr window. So if your alliance owned a castle, you knew you had to be online on Saturday from 5pm CST - 7pm CST to protect it. Same if you were signed up to siege.

Setting restricted times to siege does conflict with a "full freedom" approach, but also mitigates some of the logistical / development hoops you'd have to jump through to fairly protect people's assets at any given time of the day that a player isn't logged in.

The siege systems for UO & L2 are much more detailed than I described above, so if you have any follow-up questions on them, I'd be happy to explain.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby RajCaj » Thu Jul 02, 2015 5:15 pm

In regard to having "shades" or some sort of guards protect a player's character, wherever they log out at.....why not just have the player disappear from the world after logging off?

I think guards may be appropriate to protect property or assets external to what's carried on a character....but persistent presence in the game I think makes things a little more complicated than it needs to be. There should be a timer that prevents people from insta-logging....which could be used to escape a dangerous situation....but after a certain period of time, they should just disappear from the world....along with the stuff they have on their person.

Having ghosts, or NPCs protect where a player logs out could be exploited. Opposing faction players might see where their opponents have logged, and may camp or use that info to their advantage. A faction could have their characters strategically log out in tactical areas, where they could use the more powerful NPCs protecting their body as an offensive weapon in combat.

My personal opinion is the added realism of having your character be susceptible to siege while offline is not worth the potential unintended consequences relating to game mechanics that would have to be developed to not make logged off players sitting ducks.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Triadian » Thu Jul 02, 2015 7:43 pm

RajCaj wrote:In regard to having "shades" or some sort of guards protect a player's character, wherever they log out at.....why not just have the player disappear from the world after logging off?

well we assume most people will logout inside a structure they own as they get better rest than if they sleep out in the rough.

if people dont sleep in a safe place then what happens when a bear or humanoid or anther play comes across the place where they logged out. if it wasnt a safe place to log out then places should risk losing something. thus if we keep their bodies in view at all times they could be killed or robbed.

if we just remove their bodies like most games then that leaves their structures as fair game to all and sundry, thus the idea came about that instead of vanishing we have them form a weaker npc than themselves to not only defend from something nasty but also to protect to some extent where they logged out
RajCaj wrote:I think guards may be appropriate to protect property or assets external to what's carried on a character....

npc guards will be few and far between and even then you have to befriend them in order to get them to follow you or do as you instruct them too. they will no doubt be only for the highest populated villages and towns.
RajCaj wrote:but persistent presence in the game I think makes things a little more complicated than it needs to be. There should be a timer that prevents people from insta-logging....which could be used to escape a dangerous situation....but after a certain period of time, they should just disappear from the world....along with the stuff they have on their person.

more complicated it maybe but also more realistic. if someone steals the sword you spent ages crafting and logs out - you would never be able to get it back. if you managed to track them down to their resting place you could get your sword back. and possible some other stolen items which of course you would return to their rightful owners.
RajCaj wrote:Having ghosts, or NPCs protect where a player logs out could be exploited. Opposing faction players might see where their opponents have logged, and may camp or use that info to their advantage.

well then surely you should of found a safer place to logout ? like inside your structure or somewhere hidden where you would be less likely to be found.
RajCaj wrote: A faction could have their characters strategically log out in tactical areas, where they could use the more powerful NPCs protecting their body as an offensive weapon in combat.

the ghosts or whatever shade is left behind will be very stupid in terms of how it defends possibly only fighting when attacked or when the property its in is attacked. in no way would it be possible to use them strategically or at least none spring to mind.
RajCaj wrote:
My personal opinion is the added realism of having your character be susceptible to siege while offline is not worth the potential unintended consequences relating to game mechanics that would have to be developed to not make logged off players sitting ducks.

why shouldnt you be a sitting duck if you chose to log out on the main road between two villages carrying that massive haul of diamonds you mined ?
would it not add an extra layer to the game if you planned where to log out to ensure you logged in in the same state you logged out in ?
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:09 am

Been playing a bit of ARK, and I personally now HATE having your body be killable / lootable when offline.

RajCaj wrote:First question I have is....is it necessary to make a player's city / assets able to be sieged at all times? If so, then yes....you'll need some mechanic to make it "fair" for the folks that have to sleep, work, cook, etc.

If not, then you can mitigate the risk with offline player's assets being targets for raids by coming up with a system that sets specific time intervals the faction's assets are able to be sieged. This will give players a heads up for when they will need to be logged in to defend their assets, while still allowing for opposing factions to conquer & siege territory.

Ultima Online's faction system allowed for factions to wrestle control of cities from other factions by making the cities open for "siege" in 2 week intervals. A faction would steal an item from one of the cities in the game and bring that item back to their faction's base. That faction would have to hold that item in their base for 24hrs to take control of that city for 2 weeks...where they can then set taxes, set traps for opposing faction members & faction guards to help fight opposing faction members.

The 2 weeks of control & 24hrs to hold the city sigil sets some finite time frames for people to work off of when scheduling / planning time in the game to defend / siege.

Lineage 2 was even more rigid with their controlled sieges, but still worked out pretty good. Alliances / Clans could sign-up to siege one of many castles in the game....with sieges for a castle happening on a specific day on the weekend, and only for a 2hr-3hr window. So if your alliance owned a castle, you knew you had to be online on Saturday from 5pm CST - 7pm CST to protect it. Same if you were signed up to siege.

Setting restricted times to siege does conflict with a "full freedom" approach, but also mitigates some of the logistical / development hoops you'd have to jump through to fairly protect people's assets at any given time of the day that a player isn't logged in.

The siege systems for UO & L2 are much more detailed than I described above, so if you have any follow-up questions on them, I'd be happy to explain.


Your buildings and chests etc... will not be protected while you are offline, I think too many sandbox games do this and the world feels too restrictive IMO. While I don't think you should lose your character or equipment on your character when you are not online, buildings are a part of the world, an obstacle in some cases, they should be allowed to be attacked I think.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Fri Jul 03, 2015 5:14 am

RajCaj wrote:In regard to having "shades" or some sort of guards protect a player's character, wherever they log out at.....why not just have the player disappear from the world after logging off?
My personal opinion is the added realism of having your character be susceptible to siege while offline is not worth the potential unintended consequences relating to game mechanics that would have to be developed to not make logged off players sitting ducks.


I was not advocating for players to be actually killable and lootable while offline, just spawn the defend-only shade to allow them to add some of their defensive power to the defense of their town.

I personally think ideally we should have a town be harder to take while the players are offline to discourage people from attacking when a fort is empty of live players. The shade system was just one tool I think might help achieve this.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby RajCaj » Mon Jul 06, 2015 4:31 pm

Great feedback, and thanks for responding! I just wanted to preface my comments by saying that my probing questions, offerings & opinions are just that...opinions. You all are doing a great thing by taking the next step and trying to put something together. Any disagreements or alternate points of view are not meant in offense or suggest anything other than 1 guy's outside perspective & experiences. Thanks for this opportunity to provide feedback at the ground floor of development for Factions.

Triadian wrote:well we assume most people will logout inside a structure they own as they get better rest than if they sleep out in the rough.


What will players do before they've acquired an owned structure? Can they be "friended" or given "co-ownership" status to someone else's structure? Will there be any public inns or taverns that will provide rest or protection benefits of a person's corpse?

Where I'm aiming at is to better understand what new / novice players will do to guard the fruits of their labor, during a particularly vulnerable time in their journey. I think providing those protections is a great incentive to get new players seeking out protection through affiliation, but it may serve the attrition of new players to provide some basic protections for their earnings, as they attempt establish themselves in the community.

Triadian wrote:if people dont sleep in a safe place then what happens when a bear or humanoid or anther play comes across the place where they logged out. if it wasnt a safe place to log out then places should risk losing something. thus if we keep their bodies in view at all times they could be killed or robbed.

if we just remove their bodies like most games then that leaves their structures as fair game to all and sundry, thus the idea came about that instead of vanishing we have them form a weaker npc than themselves to not only defend from something nasty but also to protect to some extent where they logged out


I think we may be conflating two scenarios....1) what happens to a person's body when they log off 2) what happens to a person's structure when they log off

Regarding what happens to a person's body...can you explain a little further what you mean by "safe" space? Does "safe" mean not likely found? If so, will the world be expansive enough for a player to find a "hiding spot" to safely log out without being found by NPCs (non player characters) or other players?

For example....in H1Z1, any player can place a strong box (or other structure) anywhere on the map, in effort to maintain some continuity between life/death cycles. The expectation is the same....yes, you can create a structure, but it's open to tampering & looting by any person who happens to find it. In a world that is relatively small, in comparison to player population density, people's strong boxes are typically found and looted with no consequence....making the strong boxes effectively useless, or VERY risky at best.

IF they log out in their own structure, then I can see some benefit to having a "lesser NPC form" of the player protect the structure...because the structure is persistent and open to destruction by the environment.

That said, how strong is the lesser NPC form of the player? Will it only be sufficient to repel a wandering troll, or will it be capable of dispatching a player? The trick here will be striking the right balance of what kind of attack this lesser NPC form of the player will be able to handle. Too weak, and there is little point to have them in the first place. Too strong, and there may be little point to allowing players the ability to siege other player's structures.

Triadian wrote:more complicated it maybe but also more realistic. if someone steals the sword you spent ages crafting and logs out - you would never be able to get it back. if you managed to track them down to their resting place you could get your sword back. and possible some other stolen items which of course you would return to their rightful owners.


Fair, but there may be other methods of retribution as well...
1) Even if someone took your item and logged, if you know the identity of the person that stole your item, you could put that person on your "Do not associate or do business with list", "Kill List" or offer a bounty on your item or the head of the offender (player reputation should matter...which helps govern antisocial behavior)

2) There could be a way a player could gain access to the thief's home / structure, where you could get your item back, and potentially the stolen items of others

For example, Ultima Online's original implementation of player housing made player homes lockable with a key, which is needed to lock & unlock the door. That key is a lootable item in their inventory, and can be stolen or looted from a person's corpse. Anyone looting that key then has full access to that structure & everything in it, until the owner changes the locks. Thieves, who are capable of moving while hidden, could also camp out player's homes and sneak in behind the owner, as they unlock & open the door.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby RajCaj » Mon Jul 06, 2015 4:44 pm

TheeLord wrote:Been playing a bit of ARK, and I personally now HATE having your body be killable / lootable when offline.

Your buildings and chests etc... will not be protected while you are offline, I think too many sandbox games do this and the world feels too restrictive IMO. While I don't think you should lose your character or equipment on your character when you are not online, buildings are a part of the world, an obstacle in some cases, they should be allowed to be attacked I think.


I agree....making a player's structure & it's contents open for looting certainly adds a challenging wrinkle of gameplay.

You mention that player structures can be an obstacle in some cases....how does your team define the function of a player structure? Is it just a remotely located bank for the player? Or are there other functions?

All I'd say is keep that definition of player structures in mind when determining how easily it can be destroyed.

I'll reference H1Z1 again....there is all kind of in-game mechanics to create bases to store items & operate out of, but are relatively easy to take down....making them somewhat irrelevant. When a developed feature set is irrelevant, it amounts to wasted development resources (time & money) and could cause other dependent systems to fail.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby RajCaj » Mon Jul 06, 2015 4:52 pm

TheeLord wrote:I was not advocating for players to be actually killable and lootable while offline, just spawn the defend-only shade to allow them to add some of their defensive power to the defense of their town.

I personally think ideally we should have a town be harder to take while the players are offline to discourage people from attacking when a fort is empty of live players. The shade system was just one tool I think might help achieve this.


I see, thanks for the clarification.

Regarding making player towns / structures more difficult to take while logged off....it's an interesting idea, but just guard against unintended consequences.

A faction owned town may purposely leave their characters that own structures in the town logged off - so that they could leverage the defensive capabilities of the "shade", while logging into an alternate (but allied) character...effectively doubling up on their ability to defend.

Forgive my ignorance, but I haven't read up on Faction game features related to how many characters a player is able to generate on one account or server, or how many IPs are allowed (see multi-boxing).
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Triadian » Mon Jul 06, 2015 5:16 pm

when i have more time i will address the massive posts (TY)

but just to answer the last, atm we are set on 1 char per account, 1 account per ip - although we will allows some accounts to be whitelisted such as family members and universities etc... more on that when we get to that stage. assume for the sake of arguments 1 account per player per ip.
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby TheeLord » Mon Jul 06, 2015 8:07 pm

RajCaj wrote:
TheeLord wrote:Been playing a bit of ARK, and I personally now HATE having your body be killable / lootable when offline.

Your buildings and chests etc... will not be protected while you are offline, I think too many sandbox games do this and the world feels too restrictive IMO. While I don't think you should lose your character or equipment on your character when you are not online, buildings are a part of the world, an obstacle in some cases, they should be allowed to be attacked I think.


I agree....making a player's structure & it's contents open for looting certainly adds a challenging wrinkle of gameplay.

You mention that player structures can be an obstacle in some cases....how does your team define the function of a player structure? Is it just a remotely located bank for the player? Or are there other functions?

All I'd say is keep that definition of player structures in mind when determining how easily it can be destroyed.

I'll reference H1Z1 again....there is all kind of in-game mechanics to create bases to store items & operate out of, but are relatively easy to take down....making them somewhat irrelevant. When a developed feature set is irrelevant, it amounts to wasted development resources (time & money) and could cause other dependent systems to fail.


Structures can serve all sorts of purposes. Nothing is pre-built in Factions, so think of all the functions that structures serve in other MMOs, but have them be built by players / factions instead. All vendors, mission boards, banks, player housing crafting facilities etc.. etc..
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby Triadian » Wed Jul 08, 2015 2:42 pm

RajCaj wrote:Great feedback, and thanks for responding! I just wanted to preface my comments by saying that my probing questions, offerings & opinions are just that...opinions. You all are doing a great thing by taking the next step and trying to put something together. Any disagreements or alternate points of view are not meant in offense or suggest anything other than 1 guy's outside perspective & experiences. Thanks for this opportunity to provide feedback at the ground floor of development for Factions.

i finally remembered i didnt answer all these lovely posts so let me do so now.

RajCaj wrote:What will players do before they've acquired an owned structure? Can they be "friended" or given "co-ownership" status to someone else's structure? Will there be any public inns or taverns that will provide rest or protection benefits of a person's corpse?


well we start all players out on having the very basic plans to build their first structure. however if they cant be bothered to build one or are playing alongside a friend, if a structure has no door then anyone is free to enter and use it, think tents and such like, if a door is on the structure then it can be locked and permissions given to others to allow entry or simply left unlocked if you wish it to be a inn or tavern etc. as to wether there will be public inns etc thats upto the players - we build nothing for you there is no massive city filled with shops inns and npcs to guard you - if you want them you build them. all we offer is a massive island full of trees and animals and strangers for you chop kill eat or befriend.

RajCaj wrote:Where I'm aiming at is to better understand what new / novice players will do to guard the fruits of their labor, during a particularly vulnerable time in their journey. I think providing those protections is a great incentive to get new players seeking out protection through affiliation, but it may serve the attrition of new players to provide some basic protections for their earnings, as they attempt establish themselves in the community.

we have talked about the alpha and beta players building the first city near the beach and having new players able to choose start near that city rather than just washing up at any random place and having to fend for themselves.

RajCaj wrote:Regarding what happens to a person's body...can you explain a little further what you mean by "safe" space? Does "safe" mean not likely found? If so, will the world be expansive enough for a player to find a "hiding spot" to safely log out without being found by NPCs (non player characters) or other players?


safe could mean many things to many people, not likely to be found is one interpretation yes and i hope the world will be expansive enough for that to happen. some other interpretations maybe a player finding a cave full of bears who chooses to bring food to those bears and gain their trust and friendship thus that they allow the player to join them in their cave and have him sleep behind them. thus he has a whole family of wouldbe guards forcing other players to stay away from the cave. maybe one player decides living in structures is for the weak and improves his climbing skills to the point where he can climb the tallest trees and sleep upon one of their branches. hopefully the possibilities are endless.

RajCaj wrote:For example....in H1Z1, any player can place a strong box (or other structure) anywhere on the map, in effort to maintain some continuity between life/death cycles. The expectation is the same....yes, you can create a structure, but it's open to tampering & looting by any person who happens to find it. In a world that is relatively small, in comparison to player population density, people's strong boxes are typically found and looted with no consequence....making the strong boxes effectively useless, or VERY risky at best.

maybe players should use natural cover to put their boxes down, maybe there is a group of bushes that just happens to be big enough to put your box down in.

RajCaj wrote:IF they log out in their own structure, then I can see some benefit to having a "lesser NPC form" of the player protect the structure...because the structure is persistent and open to destruction by the environment.

That said, how strong is the lesser NPC form of the player? Will it only be sufficient to repel a wandering troll, or will it be capable of dispatching a player? The trick here will be striking the right balance of what kind of attack this lesser NPC form of the player will be able to handle. Too weak, and there is little point to have them in the first place. Too strong, and there may be little point to allowing players the ability to siege other player's structures.

this is indeed an important point, too weak and it become futile - too strong and it becomes a means rather than an end.

RajCaj wrote:1) Even if someone took your item and logged, if you know the identity of the person that stole your item, you could put that person on your "Do not associate or do business with list", "Kill List" or offer a bounty on your item or the head of the offender (player reputation should matter...which helps govern antisocial behavior)

this assumes that person ever logs in again. what if they quit leaving your precious item stuck in the database never to return ?

RajCaj wrote:2) There could be a way a player could gain access to the thief's home / structure, where you could get your item back, and potentially the stolen items of others

this is one of the reasons i am for a characters body staying online while inside a structure it would only be as safe as the structure is to protect it.

RajCaj wrote:For example, Ultima Online's original implementation of player housing made player homes lockable with a key, which is needed to lock & unlock the door. That key is a lootable item in their inventory, and can be stolen or looted from a person's corpse. Anyone looting that key then has full access to that structure & everything in it, until the owner changes the locks. Thieves, who are capable of moving while hidden, could also camp out player's homes and sneak in behind the owner, as they unlock & open the door.

this is the kind of system i am hoping comes into factions, i think it adds a lot of personal levels to the characters and their surroundings that you just dont get when you log out in the middle of a busy city in say warcraft knowing full well when you login everything will be right where you left it. i want a game much like life that if you choose to spend your life on the streets and sleep in the middle of the road you can expect to wake up to see everything changed or possibly not wake up at all.

RajCaj wrote:I agree....making a player's structure & it's contents open for looting certainly adds a challenging wrinkle of gameplay.

You mention that player structures can be an obstacle in some cases....how does your team define the function of a player structure? Is it just a remotely located bank for the player? Or are there other functions?


i would say it depends on the structure some would be purely to keep the elements out better comfort when resting etc. other would be defences such as barricades and such like, others would be mixture of the above and possibly more different purposes.
RajCaj wrote:All I'd say is keep that definition of player structures in mind when determining how easily it can be destroyed.

this would be upto the players, you can build a wooden chest out of low density pine wood or out of high density pine wood or even high density tungsten steel, if you plan on keeping your jewels in the low density pine wood chest and your plans for "The best sheep stew recipe" in the metal one you best hope your the best chef for miles around.

RajCaj wrote:I'll reference H1Z1 again....there is all kind of in-game mechanics to create bases to store items & operate out of, but are relatively easy to take down....making them somewhat irrelevant. When a developed feature set is irrelevant, it amounts to wasted development resources (time & money) and could cause other dependent systems to fail.

things like that we put in the players hands - if you want your stuff to be safe use the best materials you can afford or find, use the best craftsman to build it and put it in the safest place you can find.

RajCaj wrote:Forgive my ignorance, but I haven't read up on Faction game features related to how many characters a player is able to generate on one account or server, or how many IPs are allowed (see multi-boxing).

as before
Triadian wrote:atm we are set on 1 char per account, 1 account per ip - although we will allows some accounts to be whitelisted such as family members and universities etc... more on that when we get to that stage. assume for the sake of arguments 1 account per player per ip.


many thanks once again for taking the time to provide all your insights
"it would separate this project from others because the devs are cool and have a clue :-)"
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Re: QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Whats happens while your offline ?

Postby RajCaj » Wed Jul 08, 2015 8:10 pm

Thanks for taking the time to read & thoughtfully respond Triadian! Your feedback is very helpful and I like the direction you all are heading...keep up the great work!
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