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raeshlavik

For Everyone Worried About [Insert Game Rules Here]

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I had a bit of an epiphany this morning whilst pondering the vagaries of Crowfall, and this led to the determination that someone at ACE is probably the smartest guy in the industry right now, and it really put me at ease with regard to the vagaries of 'how will Crowfall work' and 'will I / other people like it'.

 

And I'd like to put that here in writing, just in case it assuages the trepidations of other folks. Some folks will be all 'duh!', but I also see a lot of posts asking the same basic 'content' questions over and over, and while I read the manifesto several times, it didn't really click until I put it into a different context...

 

So, simply put, don't think of Crowfall as a PVPMMO. It's not.

 

I know this sounds odd, but hear me out.

 

What you are getting with Crowfall is a rules and character system, like AD&D, and what you are doing with it is building and evolving a character over time according to this universal rules system irrespective of content.

 

Accordingly you are also building a friend group for that character, and a guild for that friend group, and a nation for that guild, and so on.

 

This character that you are building can then be inserted into 'modules', like an old tabletop RPG; Dregs, GodWars, Guild versus Guild, and a million other things we've not thought of yet. And at the end of each module your character collects their XP and Loot, falls back to the proverbial "inn" to look over the Adventurer's Board, and plan the next Expedition to the Barrier Peaks, or The Keep on the Borderlands, or the Vault of the Drow... If anyone still remembers those. :)

 

In this way, even if you don't think you will like FFA bloodbaths in the Dregs, you can still create a character and go hang out in the Inn and await a different module that you will like. And if certain kinds of modules are not popular, they can be turned off, if others are crazily popular, they can be riffed on and expanded.

 

This means the Crowfall is actually the closest we've ever come to a massively multiplayer online RPG - where the player's characters are the focus, and the game is an infinite selection of things for them to conquer.

 

So even if the Dregs are the only thing available at launch, Crowfall will 'launch' again, and again, and again - each time with yet another kind of thing to do. Kind of like AD&D - you bought the rule books, made characters, and then put them into adventures.

 

So - don't worry. :)

 

Again, my apologies if this was self-evident to a few folks. Hopefully though it will explain the 'idea' to those who seem to still be worried about the content of the game over the actual goal of the game.


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Hey thanks for the post.

 

As a high level concept what you're saying makes perfect sense and I appreciate the reminder.  CF has the potential to be an astounding, immersive, really enjoyable game.

 

What is tripping me up is the nitty gritty decisions.  It's the wide gap between the potential of the game and the actual use of that potential.

 

They can have a wide range of potential rulesets but they're committing to only the FFA PvP one.

They can have a robust crafting experience for players in the EK but they're committing to focusing on crafting in the campaigns instead.
They can make any scenario for exports but they're using one that involves an RNG.

I like to take info from the devs and walk it through actual gameplay in my head.  When I walk through the experience of being in the game I love the sense of teamwork I get, the exploration, the excitement of discovering resources and the thrill of the crafting system I'm hoping will be there.  I'm still a bit meh about PvP and the constant stress of attack always imminent but I'm confident I can get more comfortable with PvP by launch.

But right now the export rules and the summoning circle and the RNG are just too punishing for me and I've no reassurance on any real level that CF won't launch with the system as defined and then just keep it. Yes, they have the potential to make an astounding game but they're narrowing the focus so sharply that all that potential is just lost. And while I keep seeing "we'll adjust it" I'm also seeing that they're starting with the harshest ruleset and planning on backing off if it's too much.

 

That only works if you bookend it with a soft ruleset.  Which is what the EK should be but all info right now points to very little crafting and no real way to build player hubs unless you win win win at the harshest ruleset.

 

The potential for the game is great.  The reality of what is being chosen for the actual gameplay is very narrow.
 


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The Chronicles of Crowfall           The Free Lands of Azure            RIP Doc Gonzo.

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Hey thanks for the post.

 

As a high level concept what you're saying makes perfect sense and I appreciate the reminder.  CF has the potential to be an astounding, immersive, really enjoyable game.

 

What is tripping me up is the nitty gritty decisions.  It's the wide gap between the potential of the game and the actual use of that potential.

 

They can have a wide range of potential rulesets but they're committing to only the FFA PvP one.

They can have a robust crafting experience for players in the EK but they're committing to focusing on crafting in the campaigns instead.

They can make any scenario for exports but they're using one that involves an RNG.

 

I like to take info from the devs and walk it through actual gameplay in my head.  When I walk through the experience of being in the game I love the sense of teamwork I get, the exploration, the excitement of discovering resources and the thrill of the crafting system I'm hoping will be there.  I'm still a bit meh about PvP and the constant stress of attack always imminent but I'm confident I can get more comfortable with PvP by launch.

But right now the export rules and the summoning circle and the RNG are just too punishing for me and I've no reassurance on any real level that CF won't launch with the system as defined and then just keep it. Yes, they have the potential to make an astounding game but they're narrowing the focus so sharply that all that potential is just lost. And while I keep seeing "we'll adjust it" I'm also seeing that they're starting with the harshest ruleset and planning on backing off if it's too much.

 

That only works if you bookend it with a soft ruleset.  Which is what the EK should be but all info right now points to very little crafting and no real way to build player hubs unless you win win win at the harshest ruleset.

 

The potential for the game is great.  The reality of what is being chosen for the actual gameplay is very narrow.

 

Well, I think you are forgetting one thing when you play things through in your head.

 

RNG on export only really matters if you win (which you won't)

Crafting in the EKs will only really matter if you win (which you won't)

 

See, now there is only the stress about constantly being killed in pvp (which you wil)

 

Thank me later

 

;)


 

This game looks like a larger scale version of marvel heroes so far with forts.  - nephiral marts 7 2015

 

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They can have a wide range of potential rulesets but they're committing to only the FFA PvP one.

They can have a robust crafting experience for players in the EK but they're committing to focusing on crafting in the campaigns instead.

They can make any scenario for exports but they're using one that involves an RNG.

 

These are very legitimate concerns, and multiple threads has been made on the forums discussing them in detail.

I sure hope ACE has a plan when it comes to these points, because they will make or break the game.

 

The RNG export is probably the most important one on that list imo.  I dont mind some RNG, but I agree with the community that want something they can calculate, and not something random that has the possibility of screwing you over in the game.

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I would like to add a short add on to the OP.

 

If you get worried about such and such mechanic, try to think to yourself "Wait, would the devs really be so stupid that they would let this happen?"

 

Or you could go "I can't believe they would do that", because most of the time, they wouldn't


 

This game looks like a larger scale version of marvel heroes so far with forts.  - nephiral marts 7 2015

 

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This is actually a really great way of thinking of it. I like it.

 

 

What you are getting with Crowfall is a rules and character system, like AD&D, and what you are doing with it is building and evolving a character over time according to this universal rules system irrespective of content.

 

Oooh, does this mean we can have THAC0?

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I would like to add a short add on to the OP.

 

If you get worried about such and such mechanic, try to think to yourself "Wait, would the devs really be so stupid that they would let this happen?"

 

Or you could go "I can't believe they would do that", because most of the time, they wouldn't

 

I would agree with you, but we have seen with games in the past that devs have had a total brainfart and ruined games in the development fase.

We dont have much choice other than trusting in ACE, but its always good to voice our concerns incase they might have missed something, or not given a certain mechanic enough thought.

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They can have a wide range of potential rulesets but they're committing to only the FFA PvP one.

They can have a robust crafting experience for players in the EK but they're committing to focusing on crafting in the campaigns instead.

They can make any scenario for exports but they're using one that involves an RNG.

 

Or, they could instead decide to go with a softer ruleset, and alienate their target audience, or they could instead push everything back by 6 months to allow for more campaign settings, which risks alienating everyone due to the time push.....

 

Nah, I'm good with their current direction. 


Rhend - SB - Hy'shen/Avari || Rhend - AA - LotD || Dynereir - SB - House Lok-ri || Magius/Amok - AC - Too many to list

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I would agree with you, but we have seen with games in the past that devs have had a total brainfart and ruined games in the development fase.

We dont have much choice other than trusting in ACE, but its always good to voice our concerns incase they might have missed something, or not given a certain mechanic enough thought.

I will agree with your here.

 

If the answer to my questions were either "Yes they are stupid" or "Yes I could believe they would do this idiot thing" then there are a couple of options.

 

Either speak your mind (but still not until you use the test questions)

Have a serious conversation with yourself about WTF you would back a game made by these people"

 

If you constantly have to have doubts about the people making a game, chances are that they wont make a game you will like no matter what they do.

 

This isn't even fan speaking, because I will eventually see if this game will be fun to play.

From past experience, I am not convinced that there is a big chance of it.

 

Notice how I did not say anything negative about suggestions though?

Or, they could instead decide to go with a softer ruleset, and alienate their target audience, or they could instead push everything back by 6 months to allow for more campaign settings, which risks alienating everyone due to the time push.....

 

Nah, I'm good with their current direction. 

I know what you mean.

 

People totally lost interest for GTA V for PC with all the delays.


 

This game looks like a larger scale version of marvel heroes so far with forts.  - nephiral marts 7 2015

 

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THAC0 is not a mexican food...

 

Of course it's not. It's something that's actually not that complicated but is also almost impossible to explain to others. And I love it.

Edited by Bombastuss

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Of course it's not. It's something that's actually not that complicated but is also almost impossible to explain to others. And I love it.

 

True. I guess it is a bit like an Illuminati handshake if you know what the hell it is, and how it works. :)


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But right now the export rules and the summoning circle and the RNG are just too punishing for me and I've no reassurance on any real level that CF won't launch with the system as defined and then just keep it. Yes, they have the potential to make an astounding game but they're narrowing the focus so sharply that all that potential is just lost. And while I keep seeing "we'll adjust it" I'm also seeing that they're starting with the harshest ruleset and planning on backing off if it's too much.

 

I do get that, and I think they (ACE) get it too. After all, one of the dev types made a post about the RNG of exports as being "not the most elegant design".

 

As for the Dregs being the 'focus' ruleset; it's like I mentioned elsewhere that from a development aspect, creating the two extremes and playtesting those will make iteration in the middle faster.

 

I'm not huge on the idea of the Dregs as the only 'module' at launch either, mostly because my PvP is more of a large scale political and economic thing versus cage-matches of overly twitchy folks bashing each other's skulls in for 'fun'... And I even dropped my pledge for a bit when that came to light as it felt highly disingenuous to show off all of these cool rulesets and not even bother with

 

* (actual rulesets may vary)

 

But then I realized that Crowfall needs people like you and I; people who will examine systems that don't involve decapitation and exercise Koster's Magnum Opus crafting system. If everyone like you and I bail, then yes - embargo mechanics will probably suck and crafting will be broken. This will lead to broken building mechanics, broken sige mechanics, and even broken weapon and armor systems that the CHUDs use.

 

See, that's the real secret. The FFA kill everyone dead-burnt-bodies-and-veins-in-my-teeth folks need us.

 

They just don't know it yet. ;)

Edited by Raeshlavik

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What you are getting with Crowfall is a rules and character system, like AD&D, and what you are doing with it is building and evolving a character over time according to this universal rules system irrespective of content.

This means the Crowfall is actually the closest we've ever come to a massively multiplayer online RPG - where the player's characters are the focus, and the game is an infinite selection of things for them to conquer.

Oh my god, you're right. You're right and it's amazing and glorious and beautiful and and and...

 

...

So who's gonna be the first to clear the Tomb of Horrors?

Edited by Psyentific

Hardcore gamer & tabletop enthusiast. Enjoys roleplaying, pretending to be stupid, and one-sided fun.

Goodposting 101: How to Keep the Forums Clean

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Oh my god, you're right. You're right and it's amazing and glorious and beautiful and and and...

 

...

So who's gonna be the first to clear the Tomb of Horrors?

 

Kudos to the RP1 reference.

_____________

 

 

@ the OP: I was actually just planning to make a post about the mistake of lumping this into the same category of MMORPG that WoW and GW2 and all of those other clones have created.

 

I would highly recommend watching Extra Credits' 3 part (or at least the 1st part) bit on Genres (here).

 

Crowfall has been advertised as a highly innovative MMORPG, but I would argue that it's an entirely different genre than WoW or GW2.  The problem is we name Genres based on core mechanics rather than core engagement, which is why we end up with names like "Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game," which, while taken literally is correct for all of these games, does not quite get to the heart of what makes them different.  Or think of the fact that "First Person Shooter" can apply equally to Battlefield 4, Bioshock, and Fallout, despite them being drastically different games.  Even the term "Role playing game" doesn't really make sense when you think about the fact that you play a role in all games, and it really means some kind of 3rd person, probably fantasy, actiony strategic adventure thing.

 

So while the mechanics of WoW and Crowfall appear very similar at the surface, they really represent drastically different experiences for the player.  Both involve 3rd person characters, controlled using abilities, measured based on abilities, levels, classes, and gear.  But WoW is about bringing together a mass of people to populate a story-world, and to cooperate or compete in clearly defined challenges.  Raids, or PvP matches do this.  This is why we've developed the term "Themepark MMO" as a sort of sub-genre to define those MMOs.

 

However, Crowfall's engagement is also different from the ultimate example of the non-thempark MMO (sometimes called Sandbox MMO): Eve.  While I would say Crowfall fits much closer on the spectrum (if one wants to argue that a spectrum even exists) to Eve than WoW, it's still really it's own thing.

 

That's the problem: I would argue that Crowfall is something never really done before, which is why all the comparisons people are making are often confusing and hard to answer.  Everyone wants to view it as a member of an existing genre, but in actuality it is something new and unique that needs to be considered for its own merits.  It's some kind of PvP-RPG-sandbox with a metagame.  Who knows what we'll end up calling it, but whatever it is, we'll need new metrics for success or quality of design than "What about that thing WoW/GW2/Tera did?"

 

A final point of comparison - imagine the time before LoL, when DotA was first being designed as a mod of an RTS.  At that time, RTS was a clear, solid genre.  It was Age of Empires, Starcraft, Warcraft, and a few other smaller titles. The "MOBA" (or Action-RTS as some call it) wasn't a thing yet.  But can you imagine what people asked when it was first being designed, and it looked and felt like an RTS? "Where is the micro?" "How will base building be handled?" "Will you gather resources?"  Questions like these might have been the first criticisms, and may have seemed valid because all it could be compared to was the RTS genre that it spawned from, but now anyone would feel silly asking that about a new upcoming MOBA game.  Think about how that compares to Crowfall, and I think that people will see quite a lot of similarities.

 

Anyways.  /rant finished.

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So who's gonna be the first to clear the Tomb of Horrors?

 

The Kobayashi Maru of the RP world... The mere mention of its name sends chills down the spines of those who have encountered it...

 

I've been through ToH about a half dozen times - not lived once.

 

Can we get one of these worlds for Crowfall? Someplace so nasty and twisted that 'winning' simply means you died last? I'd pay for that. :)


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Hey thanks for the post.

 

As a high level concept what you're saying makes perfect sense and I appreciate the reminder.  CF has the potential to be an astounding, immersive, really enjoyable game.

 

What is tripping me up is the nitty gritty decisions.  It's the wide gap between the potential of the game and the actual use of that potential.

 

They can have a wide range of potential rulesets but they're committing to only the FFA PvP one.

They can have a robust crafting experience for players in the EK but they're committing to focusing on crafting in the campaigns instead.

They can make any scenario for exports but they're using one that involves an RNG.

 

I like to take info from the devs and walk it through actual gameplay in my head.  When I walk through the experience of being in the game I love the sense of teamwork I get, the exploration, the excitement of discovering resources and the thrill of the crafting system I'm hoping will be there.  I'm still a bit meh about PvP and the constant stress of attack always imminent but I'm confident I can get more comfortable with PvP by launch.

But right now the export rules and the summoning circle and the RNG are just too punishing for me and I've no reassurance on any real level that CF won't launch with the system as defined and then just keep it. Yes, they have the potential to make an astounding game but they're narrowing the focus so sharply that all that potential is just lost. And while I keep seeing "we'll adjust it" I'm also seeing that they're starting with the harshest ruleset and planning on backing off if it's too much.

 

That only works if you bookend it with a soft ruleset.  Which is what the EK should be but all info right now points to very little crafting and no real way to build player hubs unless you win win win at the harshest ruleset.

 

The potential for the game is great.  The reality of what is being chosen for the actual gameplay is very narrow.

 

 

From my POV, I don't think it's because ACE thinks the Dregs is the best launching mode. I'd believe because it's probably the fastest one to make, and you can still test the vast majority (Alpha/beta phases) of systems on this ruleset and iterate. Core combat, city building/destruction, movement and other base systems work on any module. Without worrying about teams, guilds, and other overlaying systems to make, they can focus on these systems.

 

For non-developers, a quick note:

 

Optimization of making a game starts with an MVP - or minimum viable product. This is the thing that is close to representative to most of the gameplay and what you need to prove out, but not every feature that you'll launch with or build in. This is how development works to get things done in a sensible timeframe and order. So in this case, Dregs is the most "minimal" (and hardcore, coincidentally) ruleset to get the game up, working and running ASAP. From there, they can use what they learn to make the other rulesets and build those systems after things like combat feeling good and cities "work." 

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