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Godsk

Some inspiration from Star Wars Galaxies, Entertainer/Doctor systems

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I have tried to look but couldnt find what I am suggesting in the current plans for the game, please correct me if im wrong.

It seems to me that Crowfall is focused towards the idea of choosing your own play style (be a combatant, harvester, crafter or even market owner, builder, map explorer etc) and building the game with codependency between players, no man should be his own army (each high level crafter will likely be dependent on other specialized crafters and harvesters etc. So each player can if they chose find their own little niche and contribute)

My idea is attempting to bring in some of the core elements in Star Wars Galaxies (SWG), that i found to bring the community together, enable unique play styles and improve community and player interactions. 

The idea: 

The key idea is having entertainers and doctors who can work from the towns alone if they choose, and have them be 1) necessary 2) beneficial, in attempt to bring in systems I myself (and i think many others) miss from SWG and that could make a great contribution in Crowfall by tying the players together with codependency and more unique playstyles. 

Entertainer system: Combat/Harvesting Fatigue / Professional application of buffs

/Fatigue

In SWG when you did field activity, slowly you would accumulate Battle Fatigue, which would reduce your efficiency, when it got severe enough people would return to the cantina, where players with Entertainer profession would dance or play music for them which would reduce their battle fatigue. The main reason I would like to see that implemented again, is because I know a lot of the community building happened there, because people would take the time to chat and make friends as they were waiting to get their battle fatigue taken care of, often people would find their favorite entertainer as well whom they would revisit and tip for their work. 

 /Buffs

When the entertainers reached high enough level they also got the ability to buff certain stats with long term buffs often lasting multiple hours, as Thomas Blair was actually the inventor of the build-a-buff system I think its reasonable to assume he can design a Crowfall version of it again. 

Doctor system: Battle Wounds/Diseases / Professional application of  buffs

/Wounds/Diseases 

In SWG when you were fighting your stats would get wounded, especially in case you died and revived. The wounds were different from normal damage as you were not able to heal it up but would black out the top of your stats. It would, as battle fatigue happen slowly and not force you to go see a doctor immediately (but probably about once every 4 hours if you didn't die.). The system created a necessary incentive structure to allow low level doctors to get regular customers demanding work. Again the game enforced player to player interaction in this regard. 

/Buffs

Doctors could craft their own medicines which only doctors could apply to players, again they would be long lasting.

Further notes for both systems

Both buff systems were extremely potent and it never made sense to play the game without these buffs on, which greatly amplified the sense of codependency. The regular player would have relations to both a doctor and an entertainer (or a group of those that had bundled together to provide steady supply). Which would allow him to quickly make the visits, get both sets of buffs on and continue. 

I'm not suggesting implementing the exact systems from SWG, but rather the core idea of the doctor system and entertainer system and create a Crowfall version of it. And I think some of the key take-aways are that if implemented it needs to be necessary to visit these professions, their buffs needs to be potent for them to feel like their work has real value, and their effects needs to be player applied. 

I think one major concern of implementing systems like this, is that in SWG the entertainers often had a very passive playstyle. They often used macros to execute their abilities and used the game as a chat space after they had designed their buffs. I'm unsure how to strike the right balance here, if what they do is too "active" they wouldnt be able to chat mean while and it would defeat the purpose, but if its too "passive" most would find it boring. Maybe a solution would be to make their buffs very customizable to each customer so they could talk about the specifics of the buff the customer wanted. So as to include the customer in the "crafting" process of each buff.   

 

 

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No thank you. Combat being wholly reliant on systems of long term buffs is a design that we've largely moved away from in MMOs not for convenience but because it places an undue emphasis on buffs that then require the rest of the game to be tailored around them. For all the good and social building that those systems did, they had a major flaw. The game's content was designed around them, and thus, if your buffs ran out in the middle of doing something and there wren't any doctors/entertainers around to refresh buffs, guess what, you're SOL and the game is now borderline unplayable.

This creates a system where the buffers are incentivized to congregate in the higher population centers, which in turn leads to a spiral of monolith cities that actively discourage the population from spreading out and using other parts of the map. Not a problem in SWG, but a HUGE problem in crowfall, as players actively roaming the map is key to creating pvp incentives.

I was both doctor and entertainer for a while, and it became increasingly clear that the design of those systems wasn't about incentivizing down time. It was about REQUIRING down time, and that was the problem. They were good ideas, but simply not at all fun systems for the vast majority of players. We got buffs because we had no other option, whether we wanted to or not. Similar buff/teleport systems were in shadowbane around launch until eventually they were commuted to potions and scrolls specifically so that players were incentivized to have players around with the "free" version but were not required to do so.

The superior system (and the one most frequently used today) is a system of channeled buffs that incentivize grouping for all of the content rather than grouping which requires you to stop playing the content. The idea that players need to be sitting in a cantina to socialize is a relic of an age before literally every player was on voice comms and it was effectively impossible to socialize while playing the game because conversation had to be typed. That's no longer a problem. Simply incentivizing players to group together has the same effect now, and a mandatory scheduled buff system would not serve the same purpose.

Not only that, the focus of Crowfall isn't to recreate the key archetypes of a universe in which those positions are necessary as a way to build a long term living world. The focus of crowfall is on war for campaign worlds, and every single system is designed to lead directly back to that central goal. Entertainment hubs and down time simply aren't a design priority in a system that assumes (and creates) every character as a fully fleshes out combat role first, and other economic aspects second, because unlike SWG, the goal is to actively discourage opting completely out of it. While it is possible someone could become a "full time" crafter, the overall design goal is that even those crafters should desire and be pushed to enter campaign worlds and compete in combat over resources, crafting stations, and other such things.

Mandatory social hubs are antithetical to the PvP focus of the game, which is why the social hubs that do exist (the EKs) are entirely optional and mostly removed from the core game loop aside from their function as trophy rooms and "neutral" trade spaces. We don't need systems that encourage people to stay in town because the more people that sit around in town the less people there are in the world creating pvp content for one another. The goal of the game is to encourage people in to systems of conflict over winning campaigns, and for this reason mandatory down time in "safe" areas feels antithetical to the core thrust of the game. You do not want people to spend extended amounts of time in safe areas when the point of your game is PvP.

Edited by PopeUrban

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you could argue we have the counter point to this system with food and hunger debuffs [with food gathering being a potential skill/gameplay activity to focus on too] and how that say interacts with game seasons into winter and increasing scarcity etc

Edited by Tinnis

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9 minutes ago, Tinnis said:

you could argue we have the counter point to this system with food and hunger debuffs [with food gathering being a potential skill/gameplay activity to focus on too] and how that say interacts with game seasons into winter and increasing scarcity etc

The focus of those systems is to model scarcity to drive conflict rather than simply encourage people to return to town to get a buff. The point of food is less about requiring down time than it is about encouraging people to go out in to the world and find food,  take that food from one another, or deny their enemies convenient downtime locations or food stores. I suspect to a lesser degree cooking dishes that are more "long term food" are also modeled like local banks to create systems of effective territory that make life harder further away from friendly lands.

I seriously doubt all of the "easy" survivalist food remains as easily avaliable (or avaliable at all) as the campaign progresses to later seasons as lack of food was specifically one of the difficulty levers we were told makes winter harder to require players to pool resources and make winter more challenging than spring.

The point of food is to make you have to go get it, not to make you stay in town and eat it. The same way the gather/craft/decay circle is similarly built specifically to create incentives for player conflict over resources, more bank space, and crafting locations.

Food is in its infancy at the moment and currently not serving much of a meaningful function at all, but the intent for food seemed pretty clear to me. Food exists to make starving suck so people will fight over food when it becomes scarce.

Edited by PopeUrban

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13 minutes ago, PopeUrban said:

The focus of those systems is to model scarcity to drive conflict rather than simply encourage people to return to town to get a buff. The point of food is less about requiring down time than it is about encouraging people to go out in to the world and find food,  take that food from one another, or deny their enemies convenient downtime locations or food stores. I suspect to a lesser degree cooking dishes that are more "long term food" are also modeled like local banks to create systems of effective territory that make life harder further away from friendly lands.

I seriously doubt all of the "easy" survivalist food remains as easily avaliable (or avaliable at all) as the campaign progresses to later seasons as lack of food was specifically one of the difficulty levers we were told makes winter harder to require players to pool resources and make winter more challenging than spring.

The point of food is to make you have to go get it, not to make you stay in town and eat it. The same way the gather/craft/decay circle is similarly built specifically to create incentives for player conflict over resources, more bank space, and crafting locations.

Food is in its infancy at the moment and currently not serving much of a meaningful function at all, but the intent for food seemed pretty clear to me. Food exists to make starving suck so people will fight over food when it becomes scarce.

previous hints indicate plans for specalised skills or discplines relving around this tho e.g. "farming" tree or other specalised things like cooking etc

e.g. you could have a specalised player that people go to or pool resources to as a playstyle rather than everyone scrabbling for their own apples

e.g. food campfires are already a skill locked survival utility etc

Edited by Tinnis

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13 minutes ago, Tinnis said:

previous hints indicate plans for specalised skills or discplines relving around this tho e.g. "farming" tree or other specalised things like cooking etc

 

Cooking/farming seem to be the evolution of the current system to add value to contested safe zones by effectively turning them in to more efficient factories for required things like food buffs or specific resources otherwise unobtainable so that they are more attractive to attack and defend (edit: And more vital to have access to as winter comes to drive player politics of siege warfare and bending the knee) I seriously doubt there is any intention to require players to interact directly with a chef or farmer to benefit from their skillsets any more than there is that players interact directly with any other crafter or harvester.

Edited by PopeUrban

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The Entertainer profession in SWG was one of the most unique non-combat playstyles I've seen in an MMO. It did create a interesting social/community dynamic so it would be fun to have a more Crowfall version of that. As long as it didn't detract from the competitive, pvp-focused nature of the game, it could add some richness to the world by giving non-pvp players another way to contribute to their guild/factions war effort.

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As long as the addition of Doc/Entertainer roles doesn't require the three separate health bars, I'm okay with a bit of extra social gameplay.

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PopeUrban if you think this game is solely about PVP and only for players interested in PVP and nothing else, I think you are wrong. I know for a fact that many SWG veterans are flocking to the game primarily due to the crafting aspect, myself included. 

Having the ability to enjoy the game in multiple ways allow for a much broader community. For example while playing SWG I noticed many of the entertainers and doctors were female players, which I assumed might be correlated with the social and non-combative play style. 

In SWG there was a combatant side of the game, and many non-combatant styles. I am aware that Crowfalls combat side is entirely PVP, and as such the game has a huge PVP focus, but I disagree that the game becomes better by forcing every player into a combat role, I just cant follow that logic. Naturally the combat side drives the demand for every other profession, and therefore it needs to be there and it needs to be fun, but I don't see why it is necessary to force everybody in to combat if that is not what they enjoy. 

In SWG the downtime problem for group play was solved by having survivalist making camps that enabled the entertainers and field doctors to do their work away from the cities. By copying that concept in Crowfall they would be forced into the PVP part of the game as well. 

Having downtime built into gameplay may be a relic, but for some also a dearly missed relic that died as World of Warcraft set the golden standard for MMOs and everybody copied the system of every man should be his own army.

Also turning the systems I suggest into self applicable items ruin the purpose of the professions entirely, as they would be nothing but additional types of crafters. I know many people in SWG had relations with their armour and arms dealers, however, I never did as i could just purchase from their vendors if the sold something good. Social interaction is often slower and less efficient than just flipping though as UI. I did however, have relations with both the entertainers and doctors that I used regularly, and that's why I'm writing the suggestion here in the first place. 

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20 hours ago, Godsk said:

PopeUrban if you think this game is solely about PVP and only for players interested in PVP and nothing else, I think you are wrong. I know for a fact that many SWG veterans are flocking to the game primarily due to the crafting aspect, myself included. 

Having the ability to enjoy the game in multiple ways allow for a much broader community. For example while playing SWG I noticed many of the entertainers and doctors were female players, which I assumed might be correlated with the social and non-combative play style. 

In SWG there was a combatant side of the game, and many non-combatant styles. I am aware that Crowfalls combat side is entirely PVP, and as such the game has a huge PVP focus, but I disagree that the game becomes better by forcing every player into a combat role, I just cant follow that logic. Naturally the combat side drives the demand for every other profession, and therefore it needs to be there and it needs to be fun, but I don't see why it is necessary to force everybody in to combat if that is not what they enjoy. 

In SWG the downtime problem for group play was solved by having survivalist making camps that enabled the entertainers and field doctors to do their work away from the cities. By copying that concept in Crowfall they would be forced into the PVP part of the game as well. 

Having downtime built into gameplay may be a relic, but for some also a dearly missed relic that died as World of Warcraft set the golden standard for MMOs and everybody copied the system of every man should be his own army.

Also turning the systems I suggest into self applicable items ruin the purpose of the professions entirely, as they would be nothing but additional types of crafters. I know many people in SWG had relations with their armour and arms dealers, however, I never did as i could just purchase from their vendors if the sold something good. Social interaction is often slower and less efficient than just flipping though as UI. I did however, have relations with both the entertainers and doctors that I used regularly, and that's why I'm writing the suggestion here in the first place. 

I don't think you read my post very carefully.

It has very little to do with noncombat playstyles and everything to do with the scheduled buff style system being a really bad way to drive player interaction. SWG was my first MMO. I am intimately familiar with these systems as much as I am intimately familiar with the massive amount of time wasted waiting for shuttles before jump to light speed.

While novel, these systems are extremely problematic from a standpoint of respecting a player's time and deserve to be exactly where they are, namely, replaced by consumables, deployables, and crafting skills that make said consumables and deployables. In fact, the way most players used those systems in SWG was as passive macro income on alternate accounts.

Any way you slice it, the play style of entertainer wasn't very entertaining for the entertainer or the person who was forced to sit around and do nothing for ten minutes to heal mind wounds. It was overly emphasized and is commonly remembered as a better system than it actually was. Its essential required upkeep to tie players to locations is replaced by the food system and the quite small nature of the local banking systems.

I'm all for musical instruments and all sorts of other emotes and fun systems for use in a social context. The best uses of entertainer were those in which nobody involved actually needed buffs, and the entertainers were putting on a choreographed performance simply for the enjoyment of the audience. Having social tools is not the same thing as force feeding social time requirements to players whether they want them or not.

I am for social tools and systems that allow players to socialize and display their creativity. I am for systems that allow enterprising players to benefit from the indirect results of combat without being combatants themselves. I am not for systems deliberately designed to waste my time to watch someone run a macro. It was annoying when I played SWG 6 hours a day and its sure to be even more annoying now that I have remarkably less time to do so.

Edited by PopeUrban

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On 3/8/2018 at 5:14 PM, Godsk said:

PopeUrban if you think this game is solely about PVP and only for players interested in PVP and nothing else, I think you are wrong. I know for a fact that many SWG veterans are flocking to the game primarily due to the crafting aspect, myself included. 

Having the ability to enjoy the game in multiple ways allow for a much broader community. For example while playing SWG I noticed many of the entertainers and doctors were female players, which I assumed might be correlated with the social and non-combative play style. 

In SWG there was a combatant side of the game, and many non-combatant styles. I am aware that Crowfalls combat side is entirely PVP, and as such the game has a huge PVP focus, but I disagree that the game becomes better by forcing every player into a combat role, I just cant follow that logic. Naturally the combat side drives the demand for every other profession, and therefore it needs to be there and it needs to be fun, but I don't see why it is necessary to force everybody in to combat if that is not what they enjoy. 

In SWG the downtime problem for group play was solved by having survivalist making camps that enabled the entertainers and field doctors to do their work away from the cities. By copying that concept in Crowfall they would be forced into the PVP part of the game as well. 

Having downtime built into gameplay may be a relic, but for some also a dearly missed relic that died as World of Warcraft set the golden standard for MMOs and everybody copied the system of every man should be his own army.

Also turning the systems I suggest into self applicable items ruin the purpose of the professions entirely, as they would be nothing but additional types of crafters. I know many people in SWG had relations with their armour and arms dealers, however, I never did as i could just purchase from their vendors if the sold something good. Social interaction is often slower and less efficient than just flipping though as UI. I did however, have relations with both the entertainers and doctors that I used regularly, and that's why I'm writing the suggestion here in the first place. 

With you on this on Godsk!

I'm one of those people who enjoyed the early SWG game. I did quite a bit of crafting, but my main was an Entertainer (or social butterfly). I spent a majority of my time helping to run a city along with enjoyable RP style entertaining. I went to the extreme of writing songs about the players who frequently came to visit and synced it all to the music with macros. People always had a good time before going out to a fight. I am all for non-combat style roles. My best defense is burrow at the moment and I do it often. I typically won't engage in a fight as I find it's a waste of my gaming time when all I want to do is gather/craft/RP. However, I do like the risk of gathering the better materials. It's really fun when I'm able to escape an attacker and I generally will make fun of them in an RP way for chasing me in chat even if they got me prized bits!

Recently, I've found a home with an awesome crafting guild who is allied with a great combat guild and am looking forward to working with everyone there in making some great stuffs! :)

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