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ACE Development Partner & Investor
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Everything posted by KrakkenSmacken

  1. Watched the video, very informative. I think a big take away with the current approach is, if I am electing to focus on being a fighter, I will far less "soft touch" opportunities than someone who trains universal skills that are not combat orientated, due to the nature of the "throne war" model. Combat that produces war results is not going to be mindless ganking and random fights. It will most often have a purpose that revolves around the larger goal. This means that by default most combat will also be a social activity. We are already seeing just how ineffective solo players are in the big world test, and we don't even have POI importance in place yet. So, if that is the case, electing to chose combat as your universal focus means also choosing to dramatically reduce short play opportunities. Ironically enough, choosing to be a crafter means the opposite. As a crafter you will be setting up item runs off of BP's, negotiation or interaction in shop/city with harvesters and people who leave town to support them. You literally will never have to leave your base of operations, unless there are in field repair mechanics for crafters that require them to be on site, that are more beneficial than simply bringing spare gear. So either way you paint yourself into a corner, you elect to be primarily a soft touch player, or a hard touch player, OR you have two accounts. One your soft touch account that crafts and doesn't really go into the field, and one your combat focused account for when you want to interact for a protracted period of time. I think they are forcing this exclusive behavior, in large part simply because TBlair remembers so fondly the majority of his Star Wars Galaxy experience with that type of game play. The thing is, I think he also had the option there to be a fighter at the same time, and elected not to. There was no need for him to lock out of one role, to self create a dedication to another. There is also the problem of later player entrance, in that players who start with no universal skills, will be either like paper mache to those who have trained combat in both universal and archetype, OR that training is not as effective as it could be, and training universal combat is simply a really poor "choice" for anyone. I do believe the current "I can do everything" behavior of MMO's in fact does reduce social interaction, but here is the other side, so will players logging in, finding nothing to do in their one focus, and logging out. There is no reason you can't be known for two things instead of just one, and very good reason to support a player being able to do that very thing. Given all the archetypes and eventually advantages/disadvantages and disciplines, you could not only be known by your trade skills (what I think they should call the "universal" line), but also your favored combat style. How I would change. I would split off all the combat currently in universal to class level "Basic X" Trees. For example "Basic Tank," that contained all the health/armor lines. Basic DPS contains all the Weapons, etc. and make them archetype training options.
  2. I hope that's something that is up for discussion. I would like to see some "items" pulled back a bit from the everything is a loose item mentality, because locking items is often a valuable mechanic. For example, items could be "bound" to a character. Players take a finished item and go through a binding ritual that makes it non-wearable by anyone else. This would be reserved for certain types of items, and not something you could do to every item you own. Certain slots, such as disciplines, could be one way equips. Once you put it on, it's not coming off of that vessel until destroyed, or the vessel is destroyed. That way it still falls into the "everything is player made" category, but becomes something that is more of a one way choice for a player. Then much of your balancing on discipline items and character customization is done around how long vessels last. Part of the advantage of such a system is you don't gate customization by any level of training at all. The moment you take a new vessel, if you had discipline backup items for your favorite configuration, poof, your back like you never lost a vessel in the first place. It also means new players can be quickly twinked to the same level of customization as old players by guilds in an effort to make everyone as effective as possible.
  3. I recommend an imgur account. Drag/drop, and it's already published for you.
  4. You got here before my edit. Yea they are "items" so they can fit the standard crafting philosophy, but they could have other behavior than normal gear, such as equip once, no removal, decay tied to vessel, or no decay at all, etc.
  5. You may want to watch this. There is WAY more customization outside the skill tree than what is normally considered "gear" and vessels. Yes the mechanisim to add these is through gear, but it's not the gear that normally slots to body areas. No reason these types of items need to have the same decay philosophy as the rest of things. They are already back peddeling on the severity of decay from the current round of testing. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S3VODcGX3TI
  6. Part of this is dependent on resource deployment. If the devs concentrate resources like they have now, I would expect groups. If they scatter a few rare nodes here and there that do not justify sending a team, then there may in fact be soloists. Also animals may require more of a hunter style play, to gather those resources, so there could be solo hunters roaming around as well. It's not like all harvesters are going to be group players, and vice versa. That said, I do think they should re-think isolating combat as a profession in universal, rather than something everyone does. Fortunately if they notice a high number of alt's and other things wrong with the current design, my guess is shifting training trees around is not a huge deal. If there are solo hunters, they will start objecting loudly to being only prey to dedicated fighters soon enough I suspect. I've beat this horse enough in other threads however, threads I am pretty sure the devs have already read. I suspect that they are convinced enough of the current philosophy that making a change won't actually happen without evidence of a problem with the current design, so I hope they are right, and I am wrong.
  7. There is probably some emotional bleed over from another thread today that appeared to be strictly inflammatory. A couple of pages in a thread with the same broad topic, and suddenly you can find yourself taking a tone from one thread of mindless and derogatory complaints, and applying it to every other thread that is a bit related. Thread title is also a factor. Using all CAPS tends to set people off, and the title of this thread emotionally implies that the whole project took a step backwards, when several new and untested or balanced mechanics were added (E.G. stack sizes), as well as a couple of quality of life additions (resource identifications). Itldr; If you want an emotional and reactionary discussion, using a topic title that is emotional and provocative is a great way to get one.
  8. That first bit could be a signature. ACE if they are smart will ignore the emotion projected in posts, and simply stick to as close to a factual interpretation of what people are saying when they are running away with their emotions. This links to the best game development speaker and lecture I have heard. Magic the Gathering head designer Mark Rosewater "Twenty Years, Twenty Lessons Learned". Lesson 19 : "Your audience is good at recognizing problems, and bad at solving them." https://youtu.be/QHHg99hwQGY?t=3411 .
  9. Probably because the last thing you would find fun, was swinging at an enemy who was standing next to a tree, and instead of hitting him in the head, the tree drops a log on you, or breaking your sword off against a boulder. Check out trusted traders, if you actually spent some real money a while ago, you may have a package that could be sold off. Noticed you don't have a forum badge selected and only 4 posts, so no idea if you spent 5$ or $5000. Would guess the former. Oh, just checked. Account only created September 16th. Probably paid just enough money to be on the forums to troll, with statements like "is this just another pretend game to suck millions from people". Shades of Derek Smart here.
  10. The thing is, NOW is about the only time they can ratchet difficulty up to 11. If you want to make a hard game, you start in testing by making it too hard, then listen to the comments, find the biggest pain points, tone down those pain points, and see what people start squawking about something else. Sometimes that means deliberately making things stupid bad/hard. Also it is VERY VERY hard to get the right balance. Sometimes things like "Lose 30% durability" sounds like it's not hard enough, but only if you have certain assumptions about how long it takes to replace gear. If for example you are expecting shops to have available large quantities of low end gear because of factories, then that 30% isn't really that bad, where as if everyone has to personally spend an hour on each piece of gear, yea 30% is really egregious. These things are all working in unison, so that pulling on one lever is also pushing on three others because of the relationships. What the Devs know that we don't (or don't pay attention to), is what actual scarcity of resources looks like. For example the food issue. I know there are "Farm" parcels, that will probably spit food out in abundance in the early stages of the world, so maybe hunger speed is not bad and can be thought of more like healing potions or something. There are other types of factories as well, that will produce a variety of resources en mass, so other things that are time consuming now won't be later. The real question I have to wonder about, is how much is harvesting in it's current format part of the base line supply, and how much is factory? Given all the moving input values, who actually knows what decay value is correct? Nobody. It sure feels way way too high now, and should be toned down once, but I would rather they add in the correct inputs first (resource production node tuning and factories), than keep tinkering with the time/productivity equation while inputs are changing.
  11. Everyone complaining about how long harvesting/gathering takes, really needs to watch this. https://youtu.be/4RT90Vb5m7o?t=178 Notice the number "Like 3000 wood". So one caravan goes and gets the 3000 wood, and one goes hunting for the leather, and one goes and gets 3000 ore, and one goes and gets 3000 stone. Now with a couple of runs, your guild/team has enough resources for well over 300 basic confessor books. Make BP's along the way, and grind out failures, about 200 or more from a single resource run? Crafters would be at home in the early stages trying to get and organize the best BP's to base a whole teams worth of gear on, and managing production runs. It would be stupid to convert a full resource run into just confessor books, so they would have to manage inventory velocity, pricing, etc etc etc. The stuff we are testing now is simply what could be called survival crafting for one person, if you were stuck without a guild/city to get gear from. Guilds probably will make for guild members for really low cost, while selling to the soloists, who will provide extra resources in dribs and drabs, for higher markups. I think what is going to be the hottest item from what I have seen so far, "Amazing Success" metal bars built from BP's of all tiers.
  12. Thanks. Like I said above, I used to build gambling products. There is an axiom in that industry when designing a system where loss is possible and frequent. "It is more important to program the experience for the losers than the winners." Winners get the win, so aside from blinking some "Yay You!!!" lights and making money noises (if it's a slot machine), it's pretty easy to make someone who is winning feel like they are winning. You should drag wins out a bit, and even if the result is a push, or in the case of a slot machine were you got part of your bet back but not all, make it seem/feel like a win if possible. The current rolling up of the results numbers does a really good job of that now, I would change the text color and item background every time it crosses a threshold using the same color language as materials, but other than that, winners take care of themselves. What you want to do with losers is reduce the impact of the loss as much as possible by doing a couple of key things. 1.) Don't show them the loss for very long. Make it go by as quickly and painlessly as possible onto the next event. 2.) Don't highlight the loss, make it seem like the "normal" result, and move on. That huge red failure and delay on the screen until you click something is probably the worst way of dealing with an event like that. 3.) Do give away extra chances. What I mean by that, is when you have a high chance of a really crappy outcome (Payouts below 90%), replace some losses with free tries. In the Crowfall world that would be adding "Inconclusive results" on experiments that do nothing or maybe take one dot total potential without blocking it's spot in the formula instead of all the dots attempted. On combines create "resources saved" result that lets you try again. Crafting is going to be far more like a slot machine than I suspect ACE imagines, but I already see all the elements, from increasing your bet (different quality of materials), to prize tiers, (different quality of results), and all the process around "winning" as mentioned above. Because ALL high end crafters are going to consider almost everything but an "Amazing success" to make BP's out of as a "Loss", and the way they have the risk/reward set up there is only really two ways you want to do it. Experiment with only one dot at a time for "must work" and be decent items your not planning on making a BP for, and maximum risk to go for the Jackpot for anything your trying to make a BP out of. Given that assumption, players are going to need to be drawn to the process as much as the results, because crafting is going to involve a great deal of time running experiment after experiment looking for the "win", and ACE would do well to think long and hard about how they want unsuccessful attempts to "feel".
  13. The only thing I find remotely annoying about JamesGoblin, is the JamesGoblin wanna bees that he seem to inspire up for a day or two at a time, then drift off into the sunset, their names and notoriety forgotten as quickly as a fart in the wind. There can be only one..
  14. Would prefer you have to chose, dust for currency OR xp. The full time players are definitely going to be building out a very expensive to maintain in taxes EK world. Make them pick.
  15. Have all the people in this discussion totally missed the BP system being put in place? To make one awesome weapon Step one, Craft a metal bar of the materials you want the bonus for and get an Awesome success. Step two, make a BP of that bar. Step three, make 100 copies of the Awesome Success bar using a Thrall. (If you really want to go all out for mass production, make one Awesome Success bar BP for each place you can drop a resource in.) Run an assemble. If Awesome success, make a BP of that. If less than awesome success, you have a decent but not great item to equip the team If failure, say goodbye to 1/100 possible items in the run. Lather/rinse/repeat until Awesome Success BP is made, hand off production to your best thrall. Profit. You can start that process with no training, as an "Awesome success" on low end material is better than a "Great Success" on higher quality material. Well worth the risk of pushing basic team gear with lowest end mats onto new crafters in a new world, in order to save high end crafter thrall time for the best items. Also, my guess is that BP's are also something that can be sold, so I would expect any "Awesome Success" BP's will be worth something, regardless of the basic mats required, so new crafters could start being productive by maxing thrall management training first, and building BP's out of whatever mats they can scavenge.
  16. Fair enough, never really expected anything else. The wording of that announcement could be interpreted otherwise.
  17. They have responded to this type of question on the Investing site. The stock available to the community are the exact same type as the other investors, owners, and staff. If they want to personally make a profit for themselves, they are obligated to distribute with other stock holders. They can not selectively issue dividends to one group and not the other. They have tied their own personal interests with those of the other investors, which is vastly different than what Hollywood accounting does to show "no profit" to cheat lower end stake holders.
  18. FAQ on Thralls http://crowfall.com/en/faq/thralls/
  19. The only NPCS in cities will be thralls put there by players. Shop Thralls, crafting thralls, guard thralls etc. So there really is no way to tell how people will lay out their own cities/towns, or how it will feel. Bonus, you can make your own city in the Eternal Kingdoms and give it whatever feel you like, provided you can manage the upkeep. Castle building series. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2P2GFP_39qU https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4RT90Vb5m7o https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KpCoVFIk8vE EDIT: also note how campaigns work. The world will start empty of buildings but full of resources, then age until it is full of buildings or destroyed ruins, and empty of resources. So the feel will change dramatically as the world/campaign progresses.
  20. Access has been unavailable to the lobby for about a day. Check back when they announce the start of this weekends test.
  21. It's so funny how people are different. I find the usual character trope to be far more disconnected, especially when taking into account twinking (transferring higher level items or resources from one avatar to another), selecting what avatar to take on a mission based on current group composition, or when running the same "adventure" for the 57th time to get that special loot. I plan on my connection being to my Crow character, (if I have a connection at all), and not any particular vessel. I love the idea of treating them as disposable/temporary in-habitations of my greater crow spirit. People are sooo different. I hope CF can let both run side by side effectively. I think a huge part of being able to do that is going to be not gating groups by level.
  22. Who said you have a choice to spawn close? I suspect that the balance will be in territory controlled, as in you have to spawn in a grave in an area your faction controls, with and escape/comeback mechanic that if you have no territory, the closest is selected, or the loss of territory triggers your factions loss condition and are punted from the world. That way unless there is a grave on your side right next to a big battle, you are going to have a bit of a jaunt to get back into the action. By the time you get there, who knows what impact your absence has had on the battle outcome. It's going to be a bit of work to control the slippery slopes, but I think they will figure it out just fine.
  23. I also think they were talking about the game play around vessels. In the same way you don't have to craft, but can rely/pay on others to do so, you will be able to purchase finished vessels so don't need to engage in the necessary activities directly. I suspect every grave yard will have an unlimited supply of base archetype vessels of low quality to prevent players from being locked out entirely.
  24. Current build has the most appeal to one of the four categories in Bartle's Taxonomy, Killers. There is bait for achievers (crafting/training), that only succeeds in being bait, in that the killers are organized, nearly merciless, and wipe out all achievement in a single or at most two encounters. There is pretty much nothing for explorers, (Map can be traversed in 15 min or so, nothing but resources and empty buildings). Social tools are near non-existent. Text only group joining and shared chat with all worlds is about it, so not much socialization appeal. And then there was the warning it was not for everybody and going to be a blood bath given in the Q&A Hardly surprising that only a small subset of players will turn out for this round.
  25. I could not help but notice. "Our first version of the Eternal Kingdom will be a common world where players can log in, drop a few test buildings and then use those buildings for advanced crafting. Resource harvesting in this world will be extremely limited (i.e. sub-poor quality items), which means that if you want to start building your economic empire, you’ll need to either brave the campaign worlds or find allies to trade with." That sort of implies that even as far back as we are now, it may be that no character/item wipes are in our future.
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