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  1. #341
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    I was more talking about paying for beta access. The idea of a beta has become so diluted anyways, but I think it's a bit strange to include it as a separate reward. Especially since Wasteland 2 was a bit more generous (cost of digital was $15, all players get beta).

    I'm all for stretch goals, I think a Watcher's Keep style dungeon is smart. It's an easy thing to add (as opposed to some of the other content they've been offering). I've never much been a fan of crafting in single player games, but if some people like it, that's cool.

    I've just been surprised that even though they've been more specific with their stretch goals (and offered more content) this kickstarter doesn't quite have the energy/enthusiasm of Double Fine's or InXile's. Brian Fargo was talking about a revolution in publishing. Tim Schaefer had some excellent videos and what looked like manic hobbit energy. They've offered far more updates, far more interviews, far more specific windows into the content of the game, but it still seems a little tepid. I get the feeling that JE Sawyer, Tim Cain, and even Feargus Urqhart are pretty reserved individuals, which might explain it, but it feels like they don't really know what to do with the Kickstarter, even that they're done with it. They have the money, now they want to make the game.

    For one thing, they should probably do an RPS interview; it's been a huge source of funding for other kickstarters. Maybe they're blacklisting the site after the downright hostile New Vegas review, which would be absolutely fair, if not the smartest thing to do. For another, I don't think a funding metagame would be the worst idea. They seem to have reserved a few $20 pledges and are releasing them at certain times, which is neat, but how about a mockup of the new dungeon, showing it get deeper with each set of backers? Or you could have concept art, even a blacked out party that adds a new blacked out member at the appropriate stretch goals. Or even something like a map of medieval France, and they could show through proportions the size of areas that had been added, without engaging in specifics.

    I've been very happy with how open they've been about content and the steps they've taken, but sometimes it still feels a little meh. Also, given the popularity of NWN as a mod maker, they should have someone working out how much money it would take to set a similar system up. I'm not saying they need to add it as a stretch goal (I would be surprised if they could do it cheaply or easily), but they should be able to explain why they can or can't and how much it would take.
    Last edited by Internet; 02-10-2012 at 07:36 PM.

  2. #342
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus b0rsuk's Avatar
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    I see what you mean and agree about betas. The modern tendency is to treat a beta like a reward - for backing a kickstarter, and of course for preordering. This is selection bias and can be both good and bad for the developer. Good, because these beta testers are less likely to spread negative opinions about it. Bad, because the developer gets potentially fanatical betatesters, who have trouble seeing a flaw in the game (not so strange considering they chose to pay for an unfinished product). And bad, because such betatesters often won't have as much discipline as someone whose full time job is testing. They just want to play the game and have fun, so less fun but important parts of the game may be left untested.

    I agree that Obsidian fails to communicate stretch goals convincingly. "A new race", "A new companion" isn't that interesting. Wasteland 2 kickstarter had talks about Mac or Linux versions, modding tools, portraits, extra music. They were varied goals and somehow felt more substantial to me.
    Last edited by b0rsuk; 02-10-2012 at 08:02 PM.
    pass

  3. #343
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    The thing is, Obsidian's already promised a Mac version and a Linux version. I would not be surprised if they have much more accurate tools than Brian Fargo to judge the amount of workflow this type of game requires. I think they've been using the funding as inputs in these tools, which is why you get unspecific stretch goals because they know they can deliver ___ much, but they don't know what it is. If they do know this stuff, they should put in stretch goals up to 3 million; rather than leaving a trail of breadcrumbs they should show where they go.

    If they would just say this, be a bit more engaged in the kickstarter, I think they would get more out of it. It's weird that I feel this way since they've been more open than Brian Fargo, offered more insight into how they're making the decisions, had more updates, and are quite clearly further along in the process than either Tim Schaefer or Brian Fargo.

  4. #344
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    it feels like they don't really know what to do with the Kickstarter, even that they're done with it. They have the money, now they want to make the game.
    You say that like it's a bad thing. I find this attitude that companies should be trying to get as much money as possible out of Kickstarter regardless of the game a bit silly. Could this project have got to five million with a more shrewd Kickstarter? Sure. But, horror of horrors, maybe it's not a five million dollar game? Maybe the game they've envisaged, with the scope they've envisaged, is a two million dollar game. Throwing more money at a game and sticking more stuff in it isn't always a good thing, y'know. Especially if you already have a solid scope and concept for the game.

    I'm sure Obsidian have a five million dollar game they'd like to make. They probably have a ten million dollar game they'd like to make to. But this is neither of those games. It's one they figured they could with 1.1 million, and now they have twice that, they can do it comfortably and even throw in a few extra bits and pieces. But if they get five times that... people are going to expect a different, bigger, game. And that's not what this is.

    Also remember the initial target was quite high. Yes, there's a few projects that have started at around 200k and then built up to 2 million through stretch goals. But they did that purposefully that way, because they wanted to make a 2 million dollar game all along and just started with a subset of that and opted to build it up. That's not what's happening here.

    I get how people are feeling. They're thinking "if they could get to five million they could make a truly epic RPG to rival BG2 in scope and length". That would be awesome. But that game wouldn't be Project Eternity. This isn't the 'give Obsidian as much money as possible and they'll make an RPG of scope proportionate to the cash raised' Kickstarter. It's a specific concept for a specific game.
    Last edited by deano2099; 02-10-2012 at 09:57 PM.

  5. #345
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    That's entirely fair, although I don't know if they really have the scope of the game planned all that well. Some of the stuff they planned don't seem well fleshed out, but they had a lot of information about god-touched for a game that didn't include them in the initial plans.

  6. #346
    For one thing, they should probably do an RPS interview; it's been a huge source of funding for other kickstarters. Maybe they're blacklisting the site after the downright hostile New Vegas review, which would be absolutely fair, if not the smartest thing to do
    HAHAH ohwow.jpg

  7. #347
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    So they released a new update today, and this is definitely the update I wanted. They've listed the classes they're using:
    Fighters, Priests, Rogues, Monks, Rangers, Druids, and Wizards.

    At 2.5m (which they'll almost assuredly reach), they'll add barbarians and cyphers (psions), and at 2.6m (which they'll also reach), they offer a place to build your own party from scratch. It also sounds like they're going with a 3.5 (D&D) style character building. A noticeable absence is paladins, but I think they're more going for having paladin included as a type of priest. They also have alignment/god based casting for priests, which I think is great.

    It's a pretty cool update.

  8. #348
    Lesser Hivemind Node internetonsetadd's Avatar
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    I'm still waiting for an update on their original races.

    And the New Vegas review is that of which we do not speak. It's just too shameful.

  9. #349
    Update #16. Mod support, woo!
    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...y/posts/323119

    I intend to get into serious modding with Unity engine now that Wasteland 2 and P:E both support them. I made a "getting started" post here. If there is someone with more experience, please correct me. :)
    http://www.reddit.com/r/projectetern..._unity_engine/

  10. #350
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    Quote Originally Posted by LarsWestergren View Post
    Update #16. Mod support, woo!
    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/...y/posts/323119

    I intend to get into serious modding with Unity engine now that Wasteland 2 and P:E both support them. I made a "getting started" post here. If there is someone with more experience, please correct me. :)
    http://www.reddit.com/r/projectetern..._unity_engine/
    I'm really excited about combat. Charges are great and reduce the unnatural power that boots of speed had in the IE games (plus have cool animations). I doubt they'll include reach weapons since they seem like they don't really benefit an ATB game. They make a good justification for their decision not to include prone attacking, even if it would have been cool. Maybe the next PE game.

    Most importantly out of all of the information is the way he fleshed out spells: DA style combinations, strongly-implied 4e style unlimited low level casting and higher levels with long cool downs, the ability to change spellbooks slowly to reload some of the bigger spells

    I'm excited about the possibility of modding, but their current support of modding is just using the nexus (I hope this becomes a Steam Workshop game), and not encrypting their game files, which isn't exactly huge.

    Good luck on your attempts in Unity. I'm currently figuring out a turn-based ship to ship combat system for my next campaign, and wanted to code it into something just to automate some playtesting. I'm a horrible coder, but I do like the logic part of it.

  11. #351
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    I'm not sure why they're worried that, traditionally, wizards and priests have had "use up" abilities and fighters and rogues haven't. Even ignoring the fact that fighters and rogues do have "use up" health points (wizards not needing them so much), it doesn't matter in a single-player party-based game where you're going to have a mix of the classes anyway. Unless you plan to make a party entirely of fighters, it doesn't really matter if a fighter requires less babysitting than a wizard. Indeed, given that the game is real time with pause, an excess of party members with lots of activated abilities is something to be wary of. It doesn't matter much in the Infinity Engine games that you don't really give that many orders to your fighters, because they're doing their front-line job and you can spend your effort controlling your artillery characters.

    As a bit of a tangent, that's one reason why MMO aggro concepts don't work particularly well in single player games like Dragon Age. In a multiplayer game, if you're going to have a tank archetype then that archetype needs to have abilities that it needs to use wisely, otherwise playing that archetype is utterly tedious. Hence, aggro mechanics. In a single-player party-based game, it is quite irrelevant if your tank is doing nothing more elaborate than standing at the front of your party so the enemies target it first, because you don't need to be doing anything with the tank, you can be controlling your other party members instead.
    Irrelevant on further examination of the rest of the thread.

  12. #352
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    Except some people like to actively play melee characters too, instead of only micromanaging "artillery" and letting the lesser classes do their thing on the frontline.
    Stealth Mode!

  13. #353
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    Quote Originally Posted by NathanH View Post
    I'm not sure why they're worried that, traditionally, wizards and priests have had "use up" abilities and fighters and rogues haven't. Even ignoring the fact that fighters and rogues do have "use up" health points (wizards not needing them so much), it doesn't matter in a single-player party-based game where you're going to have a mix of the classes anyway. Unless you plan to make a party entirely of fighters, it doesn't really matter if a fighter requires less babysitting than a wizard. Indeed, given that the game is real time with pause, an excess of party members with lots of activated abilities is something to be wary of. It doesn't matter much in the Infinity Engine games that you don't really give that many orders to your fighters, because they're doing their front-line job and you can spend your effort controlling your artillery characters.

    As a bit of a tangent, that's one reason why MMO aggro concepts don't work particularly well in single player games like Dragon Age. In a multiplayer game, if you're going to have a tank archetype then that archetype needs to have abilities that it needs to use wisely, otherwise playing that archetype is utterly tedious. Hence, aggro mechanics. In a single-player party-based game, it is quite irrelevant if your tank is doing nothing more elaborate than standing at the front of your party so the enemies target it first, because you don't need to be doing anything with the tank, you can be controlling your other party members instead.
    I think the big problem with Vancian casting is that it encourages frequent and unrealistic resting. The "solution" to that which is infinite enemies interrupting your sleep in the IE games, is just as unrealistic and annoying after a while. Fighters have a much easier way to get back health than Wizards have to recover their spells. Finally, you spend time baby-sitting fighters in these games anyways for positioning and harassment purposes, so I don't think slow cooldown abilities really matter that much.

  14. #354
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    Quote Originally Posted by Internet View Post
    I think the big problem with Vancian casting is that it encourages frequent and unrealistic resting. The "solution" to that which is infinite enemies interrupting your sleep in the IE games, is just as unrealistic and annoying after a while. Fighters have a much easier way to get back health than Wizards have to recover their spells. Finally, you spend time baby-sitting fighters in these games anyways for positioning and harassment purposes, so I don't think slow cooldown abilities really matter that much.
    Amusingly, the "solution" of enemies attacking you while you rest is actually an anti-solution. Ideally you don't rest very often. If, when you rest, there's a chance that some mooks will attack you, you know that if you rest when almost finished, you'll probably die if you're interrupted. If on the other hand you rest when you're not too badly off, you know you'll beat the mooks until they stop spawning. Thus, enemies attacking you on rest actually encourages early resting.

    Better solutions include penalties for too many rests in a certain area (when I did some BG2 modding to increase difficulty, one thing I did was track the number of rests in a given area, and improve the preparation of the bosses as rests increased), level design that restricts resting (Knights of the Chalice does this quite well: you can only rest at designated places, and you're frequently placed in situations that cut you off from the previous rest point), or my favourite solution: self-control (fight on until you reach an encounter that doesn't seem to be solveable with your current state).
    Irrelevant on further examination of the rest of the thread.

  15. #355
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    Oh I see, we don't speak of it
    Last edited by Sparkasaurusmex; 06-10-2012 at 08:42 PM.

  16. #356
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    Another option that I like would be a set number of enemies patrolling the dungeon (like Grimrock) that can discover you while you rest, who then alert nearby guards, and swarm you when found. To keep the entire dungeon from swarming players at once you can have groups with different territories, or soldiers with specific orders to guard something.

  17. #357
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Lukasz's Avatar
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    http://youtu.be/YoRDtNag8rE

    Matt Chat interview with Josh Sawyer

  18. #358
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    Quote Originally Posted by NathanH View Post
    I'm not sure why they're worried that, traditionally, wizards and priests have had "use up" abilities and fighters and rogues haven't. Even ignoring the fact that fighters and rogues do have "use up" health points (wizards not needing them so much), it doesn't matter in a single-player party-based game where you're going to have a mix of the classes anyway. Unless you plan to make a party entirely of fighters, it doesn't really matter if a fighter requires less babysitting than a wizard. Indeed, given that the game is real time with pause, an excess of party members with lots of activated abilities is something to be wary of. It doesn't matter much in the Infinity Engine games that you don't really give that many orders to your fighters, because they're doing their front-line job and you can spend your effort controlling your artillery characters.

    As a bit of a tangent, that's one reason why MMO aggro concepts don't work particularly well in single player games like Dragon Age. In a multiplayer game, if you're going to have a tank archetype then that archetype needs to have abilities that it needs to use wisely, otherwise playing that archetype is utterly tedious. Hence, aggro mechanics. In a single-player party-based game, it is quite irrelevant if your tank is doing nothing more elaborate than standing at the front of your party so the enemies target it first, because you don't need to be doing anything with the tank, you can be controlling your other party members instead.
    Given it's a stated goal to have the game soloable by any class, making all classes interesting is fairly mandatory. And just a better choice, tbh. Especially if the monsters get more sophisticated AI than just 'attack closest dude', and your fighter becomes completely obsolete as everyone just swarms past him to get at the wizard. (and I really hope that's the case.)

    But not only that, having all the classes be actually useful in a variety of ways stops players 'having' to take a wizard, or similar. I'd quite like to be able to take a magicless adventuring crew and not just be fucked. Opens up roleplaying opportunities.

  19. #359
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    Quote Originally Posted by Serenegoose View Post
    Given it's a stated goal to have the game soloable by any class, making all classes interesting is fairly mandatory. And just a better choice, tbh. Especially if the monsters get more sophisticated AI than just 'attack closest dude', and your fighter becomes completely obsolete as everyone just swarms past him to get at the wizard. (and I really hope that's the case.)

    But not only that, having all the classes be actually useful in a variety of ways stops players 'having' to take a wizard, or similar. I'd quite like to be able to take a magicless adventuring crew and not just be fucked. Opens up roleplaying opportunities.
    Well, opportunity attacks are confirmed, so if they're rushing past your fighters, your fighters are getting free attacks of them.

  20. #360
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    Quote Originally Posted by Serenegoose View Post
    Given it's a stated goal to have the game soloable by any class, making all classes interesting is fairly mandatory. And just a better choice, tbh. Especially if the monsters get more sophisticated AI than just 'attack closest dude', and your fighter becomes completely obsolete as everyone just swarms past him to get at the wizard. (and I really hope that's the case.)

    But not only that, having all the classes be actually useful in a variety of ways stops players 'having' to take a wizard, or similar. I'd quite like to be able to take a magicless adventuring crew and not just be fucked. Opens up roleplaying opportunities.
    Well, that's a crap goal. If you're going to have a party-based game, have the courage not to give a shit about solo runs. Maybe they work, maybe they don't, maybe they only work with some classes. Also, AI that runs after wizards has been annoying and tedious in every game in which it exists.

    For your second paragraph, I don't particularly care about which classes are the ones with lots of active abilities that the player has to use, just that those character only take up a certain proportion of your party, because otherwise it becomes a lot of hassle in a real time game, even with pausing.
    Last edited by NathanH; 08-10-2012 at 10:01 AM.
    Irrelevant on further examination of the rest of the thread.

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