Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by anonymous6059 » June 15th, 2016, 6:38 pm

kilobug wrote:
HarveyV wrote:Balancing combat is cancer and its what fucking ruined PoE.
anonymous6059 wrote:Wait the combat in PoE sucked? I loved it... Really loved almost everything about that game. I found this mind bobbling article that blew me away on how much work is involved in combat balancing.
IMHO the combat itself in PoE was reasonably balanced, but the XP progression was not. By doing most side quests, you reached XP cap way before the end of the game (both in vanilla and with the expansions), which is a bit frustrating when you don't gain any more XP during all the end of the game.
Interesting, I've only played through it twice without the expansions so I guess that never was a problem for me. All this talk about PoE is got me itching to give those expansions a shot.

Wait a second, if they really did make this move because of balancing and not because of the stupidity of the players isn't that a good sign? I mean the combat is one of the lowest parts of the game in my opinion. So the fact that they are taking it serious enough to tweak the core mechanics should be a good sign? Well, a good sign or a really really bad one... Either way, please Inxile don't let the combat suck like it did in PST. Although that would be pretty faithful to the original if the combat did suck. :lol:

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by -Archangel- » June 15th, 2016, 11:22 pm

sear wrote:
HarveyV wrote:They literally and factually said they added the health pool system because idiots might end up going into encounters unprepared.

That is what casuals do. They are stupid and don't take their time or learn the mechanics, and die. Duh.
I think you may be misinterpreting what I said. ;) The intent was not to "dumb down" the game for "casuals". It was primarily to allow us to balance combat better. Numenera is a system built for the tabletop and while it has some great elements, our goal is still ultimately to do a Torment CRPG and not a 1:1 tabletop simulation.

Without a human GM tuning each situation, stat pools doubling as health introduced a ton of variance in character builds and capability levels that made it extremely difficult to balance encounters, DTs, items, etc. across the entire game. With health we have a more consistent reference point for balancing encounters, and resource management is still an extremely important part of exploration/conversation gameplay as well as for combat abilities.

You are welcome to extrapolate what that means for the game, or discuss how that relates to the spirit of Numenera if you wish. But I just want to get it out there that accessibility to some nebulous idiotic mass audience was not a factor.
You have 12 major encounters and few minor ones... how hard is to balance that?! Come on! Bg2 had encounters change depending on player levels and it has way more than 12 major encounters and had way more smaller ones. You could have easily balanced these 12 encounters based on some player numbers as they are entering it or something.
This is such a terrible excuse you should be ashamed you even used it.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by anonymous6059 » June 16th, 2016, 3:43 am

-Archangel- wrote:
sear wrote:
HarveyV wrote:They literally and factually said they added the health pool system because idiots might end up going into encounters unprepared.

That is what casuals do. They are stupid and don't take their time or learn the mechanics, and die. Duh.
I think you may be misinterpreting what I said. ;) The intent was not to "dumb down" the game for "casuals". It was primarily to allow us to balance combat better. Numenera is a system built for the tabletop and while it has some great elements, our goal is still ultimately to do a Torment CRPG and not a 1:1 tabletop simulation.

Without a human GM tuning each situation, stat pools doubling as health introduced a ton of variance in character builds and capability levels that made it extremely difficult to balance encounters, DTs, items, etc. across the entire game. With health we have a more consistent reference point for balancing encounters, and resource management is still an extremely important part of exploration/conversation gameplay as well as for combat abilities.

You are welcome to extrapolate what that means for the game, or discuss how that relates to the spirit of Numenera if you wish. But I just want to get it out there that accessibility to some nebulous idiotic mass audience was not a factor.
You have 12 major encounters and few minor ones... how hard is to balance that?! Come on! Bg2 had encounters change depending on player levels and it has way more than 12 major encounters and had way more smaller ones. You could have easily balanced these 12 encounters based on some player numbers as they are entering it or something.
This is such a terrible excuse you should be ashamed you even used it.
See this is exactly what I was wondering about as well. Combat is virtually nonexistent in TToN. So what difference does it really make? Why go through all that trouble unless they do plan to make combat a strong element of the game. Inxile if you're making these changes to make this game more enjoyable keep it up. Just go ahead and gut the whole system if need be, just kidding ;). Please just don't let the combat suck or not exist at all. That was the big mistake with PST. You've already got a great story. Please keep working on the combat though. You got this Inxile!

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by kaiman » June 16th, 2016, 5:24 am

KSH wrote:Well, I think making health its own stat is a terrible move, period. One of the reasons I was excited about T:TON to begin with was its faithful implementation of how the stat pool also function as health, as this makes gameplay so much more interesting when making decisions concerned with spending points from the stat pool. With this change the game gives up one of its most interesting traits, and takes one step towards mediocrity the way I see it.
So far I really couldn't point to what felt wrong about health, but I begin to see clearer now. In almost all RPGs, stats are divided into those that are combat-relevant and stats that govern everything else. This separation means that outside of combat, no real thought needs to be given to any action that is performed. There are basically two modes of gameplay that are completely distinct.

Now for once the same resources needed in combat are also those needed out of combat. This is actually brilliant, as it unifies gameplay in and out of combat and enforces a different, more thoughtful approach to the exploration part of the game. By introducing combat-specific resources like health, this concept is watered down.

Certainly, balancing a single set of resources across the complete game is more complicated than balancing combat and exploration content separately. But (a) meticously balancing single player games just tends to make them bland and sterile (IMO), and (b) the danger of entering a crisis unprepared in TToN isn't really much bigger than the danger of having the wrong spells memorized in the IE games. Just because one or two party members are (less) useful in one crisis shouldn't mean that all is lost. I was under the impression that each crisis would be solvable in differnt ways anyway. Maybe no optimal resolution will be possible with depleted pools, but with the right approach it should be possible to prevail regardless.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by KSH » June 16th, 2016, 5:53 am

kaiman wrote:So far I really couldn't point to what felt wrong about health, but I begin to see clearer now. In almost all RPGs, stats are divided into those that are combat-relevant and stats that govern everything else. This separation means that outside of combat, no real thought needs to be given to any action that is performed. There are basically two modes of gameplay that are completely distinct.

Now for once the same resources needed in combat are also those needed out of combat. This is actually brilliant, as it unifies gameplay in and out of combat and enforces a different, more thoughtful approach to the exploration part of the game. By introducing combat-specific resources like health, this concept is watered down.


My thoughts exactly, it makes you have to think more about what you do both in and out of combat and the consequences that might follow any actions that impact the stat pool. In short, it adds another dimension to "C&C". This is a unique and brilliant mechanic, and one of the most central aspects that separate the Numenera ruleset from all the other rulesets out there. With the relatively small number of encounters in the game taken into account, I don't find it convincing in the least that this move has anything to do with balancing as we all know and use the word: far, far more complicated balancing issues are addressed by devs on a regular basis (I have been involved with game balancing myself). I'm afraid inXile don't really mean balancing as much as they do "balancing".

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by anonymous6059 » June 16th, 2016, 6:57 am

KSH wrote:
kaiman wrote:So far I really couldn't point to what felt wrong about health, but I begin to see clearer now. In almost all RPGs, stats are divided into those that are combat-relevant and stats that govern everything else. This separation means that outside of combat, no real thought needs to be given to any action that is performed. There are basically two modes of gameplay that are completely distinct.

Now for once the same resources needed in combat are also those needed out of combat. This is actually brilliant, as it unifies gameplay in and out of combat and enforces a different, more thoughtful approach to the exploration part of the game. By introducing combat-specific resources like health, this concept is watered down.


My thoughts exactly, it makes you have to think more about what you do both in and out of combat and the consequences that might follow any actions that impact the stat pool. In short, it adds another dimension to "C&C". This is a unique and brilliant mechanic, and one of the most central aspects that separate the Numenera ruleset from all the other rulesets out there. With the relatively small number of encounters in the game taken into account, I don't find it convincing in the least that this move has anything to do with balancing as we all know and use the word: far, far more complicated balancing issues are addressed by devs on a regular basis (I have been involved with game balancing myself). I'm afraid inXile don't really mean balancing as much as they do "balancing".
Hold on, so could it be that they felt they had to do this in order to allow players to do more during a play through? See, the last time I played the Beta resting would progress certain quest in the game. So resting isn't something you want to do unless you really have to or you would miss out on certain possibilities. Having a Health bar allows players to participate in combat and still be able to accomplish several quest before each rest is required. Basically, if they didn't include the health bar you'd be forced to either:
  • 1. Avoid combat as much as possible in order to spend points from your pools on quest related task.
    2. Fight collecting loot, cyphers, and other drops, but be forced to miss out on a great deal of quest.
See I think the real problem here for Inxile is the Time sensitive Quest. Yep, think you're making the right move Inxile if that's the case. Most players are going to want to fight 3/4 of the time. It wouldn't be fair if you constantly had to choose between one half of the game or the other. It is one thing to have to choose between 10 different side quest in a play through and something totally different to have to choose between two completely different ways to play the game.
Health bar has my seal of approval

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Aramintai » June 16th, 2016, 7:33 am

anonymous6059 wrote: See I think the real problem here for Inxile is the Time sensitive Quest.
You mean 3 time sensitive quests (murders, sticha, quorro&lazaret). And yea, there was a big discussion about them and necessity of resting. However, I don't think adding health bar was necessary for that, because it seems that devs also changed how effort works - now it works to a degree even if the stat pool is depleted, so the need to rest is not as great now.
Personally, I'm reserving any judgment until I see a more finished and balanced product, because now it's all fiddling and looking for what works.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Homer Morisson » June 16th, 2016, 7:35 am

anonymous6059 wrote:
KSH wrote:
kaiman wrote:So far I really couldn't point to what felt wrong about health, but I begin to see clearer now. In almost all RPGs, stats are divided into those that are combat-relevant and stats that govern everything else. This separation means that outside of combat, no real thought needs to be given to any action that is performed. There are basically two modes of gameplay that are completely distinct.

Now for once the same resources needed in combat are also those needed out of combat. This is actually brilliant, as it unifies gameplay in and out of combat and enforces a different, more thoughtful approach to the exploration part of the game. By introducing combat-specific resources like health, this concept is watered down.


My thoughts exactly, it makes you have to think more about what you do both in and out of combat and the consequences that might follow any actions that impact the stat pool. In short, it adds another dimension to "C&C". This is a unique and brilliant mechanic, and one of the most central aspects that separate the Numenera ruleset from all the other rulesets out there. With the relatively small number of encounters in the game taken into account, I don't find it convincing in the least that this move has anything to do with balancing as we all know and use the word: far, far more complicated balancing issues are addressed by devs on a regular basis (I have been involved with game balancing myself). I'm afraid inXile don't really mean balancing as much as they do "balancing".
Hold on, so could it be that they felt they had to do this in order to allow players to do more during a play through? See, the last time I played the Beta resting would progress certain quest in the game. So resting isn't something you want to do unless you really have to or you would miss out on certain possibilities. Having a Health bar allows players to participate in combat and still be able to accomplish several quest before each rest is required. Basically, if they didn't include the health bar you'd be forced to either:
  • 1. Avoid combat as much as possible in order to spend points from your pools on quest related task.
    2. Fight collecting loot, cyphers, and other drops, but be forced to miss out on a great deal of quest.
See I think the real problem here for Inxile is the Time sensitive Quest. Yep, think you're making the right move Inxile if that's the case. Most players are going to want to fight 3/4 of the time. It wouldn't be fair if you constantly had to choose between one half of the game or the other. It is one thing to have to choose between 10 different side quest in a play through and something totally different to have to choose between two completely different ways to play the game.
Health bar has my seal of approval
My thoughts exactly!

I much prefer the current speration between health and stat pools simply because I'd otherwise feel constantly on edge and insecure about wether or not I can tackle a certain quest at all, wether or not I should spend Effort to ensure the wanted result, not knowing when the next major crisis will strike and wether or not I'll be able to rest before that happens.

Like you say, resting isn't always the obvious solution to depleted effort pools as certain quests may be influenced negatively or even fail completely, certain NPCs might disappear overnight for one reason or another, thus rendering quests impossible to obtain or certain optional quest strings impossible to pursue.

This can easily be counterbalanced in P&P by a good Game Master, since he can freely, spontaneously and contextually react to everything that is currently happening in the game world - a CRPG cannot do this, there simply aren't any AIs advanced and streamlined enough for emulating this heuristic behaviour in a plausible and believable way in video games.

So if they kept slavishly to the P&P ruleset and mechanics without accounting for the inherent differences and limits of each individual environment/platform, they'd have done us a major disservice in my eyes... at least for me, this would have lead to regular frustration, regularly being annoyed by being forced to play the game a certain, most efficient way.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by anonymous6059 » June 16th, 2016, 12:08 pm

Homer Morisson wrote: This can easily be counterbalanced in P&P by a good Game Master, since he can freely, spontaneously and contextually react to everything that is currently happening in the game world - a CRPG cannot do this, there simply aren't any AIs advanced and streamlined enough for emulating this heuristic behaviour in a plausible and believable way in video games.
I know this comment is way off topic but I have to ask. Why don't we have video games that do that yet? I'll admit I know almost nothing about how video games are made, but I do know that chess engines exist that do act in the way you describe. Adapting to your moves, adjusting its tactics, changing its level of difficulty, and some on. You would think that "Difficulty modes" and the like would be obsolete by now. I'm not saying it would be cheap, but I could see a licensed GM engine for sell on steam some day that can be used across the board on most video games. Just imagine the day when all play throughs are unique and different... :roll: Sorry, got lost daydreaming again. :oops:

Forget Virtual Reality. I want a Virtual Game Master!!!!!!

To get back on topic, I think Inxile knows what's up. It wouldn't hurt for them to give us a heads up on these kinds of changes. I didn't even see it listed in the list of things Updated in the Beta. They just kind of hit us with it and it was a bit of a shock. If I was them I might of said something first. That way we could of at least braced ourselves. Aside from that I can't find anything negative about the change.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Havelok_ » June 16th, 2016, 9:57 pm

anonymous6059 wrote:
Homer Morisson wrote: This can easily be counterbalanced in P&P by a good Game Master, since he can freely, spontaneously and contextually react to everything that is currently happening in the game world - a CRPG cannot do this, there simply aren't any AIs advanced and streamlined enough for emulating this heuristic behaviour in a plausible and believable way in video games.
I know this comment is way off topic but I have to ask. Why don't we have video games that do that yet? I'll admit I know almost nothing about how video games are made, but I do know that chess engines exist that do act in the way you describe. Adapting to your moves, adjusting its tactics, changing its level of difficulty, and some on. You would think that "Difficulty modes" and the like would be obsolete by now. I'm not saying it would be cheap, but I could see a licensed GM engine for sell on steam some day that can be used across the board on most video games. Just imagine the day when all play throughs are unique and different... :roll: Sorry, got lost daydreaming again. :oops:

Forget Virtual Reality. I want a Virtual Game Master!!!!!!

To get back on topic, I think Inxile knows what's up. It wouldn't hurt for them to give us a heads up on these kinds of changes. I didn't even see it listed in the list of things Updated in the Beta. They just kind of hit us with it and it was a bit of a shock. If I was them I might of said something first. That way we could of at least braced ourselves. Aside from that I can't find anything negative about the change.
AI is not advanced enough quite yet to duplicate a GM. Especially a *good* GM. It literally takes every ounce of my brainpower to run a tabletop game well. Until we have human-level AI, I doubt it will be possible. The closest thing we have right now is levelled encounters, and not many people enjoy that. We also have randomized levels (roguelikes and roguelites), but they often lack a certain something as well.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Aramintai » June 16th, 2016, 10:42 pm

Well. this game doesn't have GM intrusions, it doesn't give you XP you can use in crises like in original ruleset either, only for leveling up. So maybe adding health bar is a cop out, but if devs make it work right I'm all for it - for a crpg player it's more comprehensible.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by kilobug » June 17th, 2016, 12:16 am

Havelok_ wrote:The closest thing we have right now is levelled encounters, and not many people enjoy that.
Indeed, that's one of the things that greatly turned me off in the Elder Scrolls games I tried. It somehow kills the whole of leveling and getting better gear if the enemies get more powerful as fast as you do. On the other hand, when encounters have fixed level, you find an area/quest too hard, you go do something else, and then come back and you can do it - then you really feel you got more powerful.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Homer Morisson » June 17th, 2016, 12:31 am

kilobug wrote:
Havelok_ wrote:The closest thing we have right now is levelled encounters, and not many people enjoy that.
Indeed, that's one of the things that greatly turned me off in the Elder Scrolls games I tried. It somehow kills the whole of leveling and getting better gear if the enemies get more powerful as fast as you do. On the other hand, when encounters have fixed level, you find an area/quest too hard, you go do something else, and then come back and you can do it - then you really feel you got more powerful.
I agree, I genuinly despise level scaling methods... when SWTOR added that and even tried to make it sound like a good thing, I finally lost what little faith I had left in Bioware since EA took over.

What's the point of levelling up, carefully planning your character progression to reach a certain level of power when even the lowliest sewer rats and street thugs are (almost) as strong as you are and you still have to actually fight them like in the very first minutes on level 1, instead of breezing through the lowlife scum as it should be?

To me, there is nothing more frustrating than having the level up-experience literally devalued.

It's about getting to feel ever more powerful, that's exactly it - and how am I supposed to feel powerful if before the stupid level scaling update I could do a certain mission in SWTOR by pulling about 50 silver and golden (strong and elite) mobs at once and raining down my awesome AoE powers on them, while now I can barely cope with more than 4-5 at a time?

Ever since that update hit, I feel much less powerful than ever before, even though the new gear is much more powerful than ever before.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by prodigydancer » July 1st, 2016, 11:35 am

sear wrote:The intent was not to "dumb down" the game for "casuals".
It wasn't the intent but it's the end result nevertheless.

Forgive the lateness of my reply, for I'm writing this post after some careful deliberation. I want to make my point which means I must keep it unemotional. Originally, inXile set the bar for TToN very high, perhaps too high - but there's no crime in that. If you fly too close to the sun, get burned and fall, you're still a hero. You deserve credit for trying. But you only deserve that credit if you get burned by the light of your ideal, not by you own vacillation.

Right now you're trying to weasel out of the challenge you picked. The move from native Numemeran mechanics to generics like HP is merely a sign of deeper, systemic problems plaguing the project. You want to reconcile your elitist - almost arthouse - goals with mundane design and mass-market audience appeal. In practice this means that you sacrifice the former to achieve the latter. You guys lower the bar every time you hit an obstacle of any kind: technical (e.g. only human companions due to "engine limitations"), resource (e.g. underwhelming character portraits) or management (e.g. how you handled the revamp of the prologue).

I cannot speak for everyone but personally I would prefer to see a game both great and greatly flawed (if being greatly flawed is the price of greatness) rather than a well-made nothing special.
Last edited by prodigydancer on July 1st, 2016, 11:57 am, edited 5 times in total.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by anonymous6059 » July 1st, 2016, 11:47 am

prodigydancer wrote:
sear wrote:The intent was not to "dumb down" the game for "casuals".
It wasn't the intent but it's the end result nevertheless.

Forgive the lateness of my reply, for I write this post after some careful deliberation. I want to make my point which means I must keep it unemotional. Originally, inXile set the bar for TToN very high, perhaps too high - but there's no crime in that. If you fly too close to the sun, get burned and fall, you're still a hero. You deserve credit for trying. But you only deserve that credit if you got burned by the light of your ideal, not by you own vacillation.

Right now you're trying to weasel out of the challenge you picked. The move from native Numemeran mechanics to generics like HP is merely a sign of deeper, systemic problems plaguing the project. You want to reconcile your elitist - alsmost arthouse - goals with mundane approach and mass-market audience appeal. In practice this means that you sacrifice the former to achieve the latter. You guys lower the bar every time you hit an obstacle of any kind: technical (e.g. only human companions due to "engine limitations"), resource (e.g. underwhelming character portraits) or management (e.g. how you handled the revamp of the prologue).

I cannot speak for everyone but personally I would greatly prefer to see a game both great and greatly flawed (if being greatly flawed is the price of greatness) rather than a well-made nothing special.
You've really got quite a talent for getting your point across. I can't say that I'm totally sure you're right though. Why does it have to be either "well-made nothing special" or "great and greatly flawed"? Isn't the best option somewhere in the middle? I don't think anyone will be happy at either extreme. A game that is "well-made and Good" or "slightly flawed and very good" would be real winners here right? Of course they are going to have to make some sacrifices. I'm not saying that this specific one was the right one. I'm just not so sure you're being fair here. Your standard seems a little too high. Although I must say you do have a way with words. I was almost ready to storm the gates with you.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Dark_Kain » July 1st, 2016, 1:43 pm

anonymous6059 wrote:You've really got quite a talent for getting your point across. I can't say that I'm totally sure you're right though. Why does it have to be either "well-made nothing special" or "great and greatly flawed"? Isn't the best option somewhere in the middle? I don't think anyone will be happy at either extreme. A game that is "well-made and Good" or "slightly flawed and very good" would be real winners here right? Of course they are going to have to make some sacrifices. I'm not saying that this specific one was the right one. I'm just not so sure you're being fair here. Your standard seems a little too high. Although I must say you do have a way with words. I was almost ready to storm the gates with you.
For me it's part of the Torment legacy.
It was a deeply unique game, that tossed a lot of RPG conventions aside, that hardly accepted any compromise in being more simple for the sake of becoming more accessible. In fact the additions and modification to the base system (such as Morte's taunt or Nameless Ones abilty to freely swap classes) made the game system more complex than the AD&D 2nd edition ruleset it was based on.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by kilobug » July 2nd, 2016, 12:28 am

prodigydancer wrote:Forgive the lateness of my reply, for I'm writing this post after some careful deliberation. I want to make my point which means I must keep it unemotional. Originally, inXile set the bar for TToN very high, perhaps too high - but there's no crime in that. If you fly too close to the sun, get burned and fall, you're still a hero. You deserve credit for trying. But you only deserve that credit if you get burned by the light of your ideal, not by you own vacillation.
Well, you're more of hero if you succeed in a slightly lower, but still impressive, goal rather than if you fail in a goal you couldn't reach anyway. Gagarin is more of hero for achieving orbit and back than he would have for trying to go to the Moon and failing, while Armstrong and Aldrin are more heroes for walking on the Moon that they would have been for aiming for Mars and failing.
prodigydancer wrote:Right now you're trying to weasel out of the challenge you picked. The move from native Numemeran mechanics to generics like HP is merely a sign of deeper, systemic problems plaguing the project. You want to reconcile your elitist - almost arthouse - goals with mundane design and mass-market audience appeal. In practice this means that you sacrifice the former to achieve the latter. You guys lower the bar every time you hit an obstacle of any kind: technical (e.g. only human companions due to "engine limitations"), resource (e.g. underwhelming character portraits) or management (e.g. how you handled the revamp of the prologue).
I understand why you could see things that way, but I feel you're reading way too much in a few unrelated decisions. It is very hard to transpose to a computer, with no GM to adjudicate, rulesets made heavily with a GM in mind like Numenéra ones. A human GM will automatically make some adjustements on how players play the game, and on how depleted their current stat pools are. Only to a point of course, if the players decide to rush into an area they know to be dangerous with depleted stats pool, well, too bad for them. But if the GM initially prepared a surprise encounter when the PCs enter the local village, but the PCs arrive much more tired than initially planned, the GM might very well (for the fun of the game, and serving the story) delay the encounter to the next morning, if it makes sense, for example. A computer game can't do that.

That's how inXile explained adding Health, it makes such kind of "balancing" much easier to do. That's a fully valid explanation to me, that has nothing to do with "weaseling out" but with adapting a pen-and-paper ruleset to a computer game, palliating for the absence of a human GM.
prodigydancer wrote:I cannot speak for everyone but personally I would prefer to see a game both great and greatly flawed (if being greatly flawed is the price of greatness) rather than a well-made nothing special.
I would personally prefer something great but not too flawed, even if it means watering down a bit (but only a bit) the greatness - like PST ;)

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by prodigydancer » July 2nd, 2016, 3:45 am

kilobug wrote:Armstrong and Aldrin are more heroes for walking on the Moon that they would have been for aiming for Mars and failing.
By that logic Armstrong could keep adjusting until his goal would be to climb a hill near his house for a Saturday picnic. It's still something, isn't it?
kilobug wrote:But if the GM initially prepared a surprise encounter when the PCs enter the local village, but the PCs arrive much more tired than initially planned, the GM might very well (for the fun of the game, and serving the story) delay the encounter to the next morning, if it makes sense, for example.
A game doesn't have to be benign, whether it's GM-controlled or not. Much depends of the setting, of course. In D&D you can hope for a friendly atmosphere in FR but you expect to be pushed to your limits and beyond in Dark Sun or Ravenloft. Planescape is mostly indifferent. It won't really try to kill or corrupt you if you're smart and cautious but a careless misstep can easily get you in a huge trouble and very few will be willing to go out of their way to save you.
A computer game can't do that.
A good CRPG can be rather unfriendly. Look at Age of Decadence, where you need to pretty much give up on non-combat stuff to become a skilled fighter. If you invest heavily in social skills and then try to solve something via combat, chances are you'll die swiftly and horribly. Note that some optional situations don't even have a non-combat solution. When you follow a much too friendly stranger to a dark alley, you'd better be prepared for a skirmish.

I don't see why Numenera (and by extension TToN) should be player-friendly. You opt for combat after having spent your pools elsewhere? Face the consequences! The absolutely worst thing that can possibly happen is that you spend too many points on optional things and get stuck. Well, welcome to Failtown!

In Wasteland 2 you could fail by doing stupid things or making wrong choices. Why shouldn't the same be possible in TToN?

retroquark
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by retroquark » July 2nd, 2016, 8:20 am

sear wrote:I'll note that stat pool damage is something we are considering including for certain enemies or special attacks, but it probably won't be a universal thing.
..you mean, so you could combine an inconvenience with a contrivance, to get the worst of both systems? To really make all role-playing choices either pointless on easy difficulty, or extremely gated to the point of removing them all on hard difficulty? Great idea! :lol: I can see the relationship between Obsidian's PoE project and Tton is close!

Seriously, though - please consider looking into balancing the light characters with increased speed and intellect dodge bonuses, damage treshold limiters, etc. While giving the might-based characters either rescue rolls when the last intellect points are spent (to reduce damage received and take physical damage, etc), or a resilience bonus to avoid getting knocked out before doing anything. While letting combo characters consider increasing edge in low-stat pools for defense purposes over having to fill speed pools and then spam rest constantly to have a chance, and things like that. And then imagine that expending effort beyond your limit can be recovered from more easily in the domain you've chosen to be strongest in, just like protecting yourself from attacks you are weak against should become a priority early on and a strategic choice to improve on later.

I mean, be honest here - the problem you really got was that a super-specialized character had trouble surviving a particular attack that was specifically going to bypass their defenses early on. And because this type of player "intuitively" expects their character to gradually transcend to demigodhood for whacking things randomly on the head for hours without aim - they are never prepared for even the low-level crises, no matter how long they play, as long as that specific attack they are weak against happens.

So you added a stat that helps idiots who don't learn survive no matter what. And in the process also end up making the stat-pools and the choices you make almost purely cosmetic, and at the very least completely disconnected from the game-mechanics. Rather than adding a way to use other pools to dodge or rescue against lethal damage early on. And then balancing against longer encounters of different kinds (that focus on particular strengths), letting the player pick those encounters they feel they may be able to control. While also making sure that the AI doesn't simply constantly pick the lowest difficulty target for their attack, as if they can smell your weaknesses like a disgruntled beta-tester aiming to agitate for a stupid solution by invoking words like "accessibility" and "popularity".

It's lazy, it's bad design, it's disregarding more convenient balancing methods tied to encounter design. And you're going to regret this manual "balancing" process you've inserted bitterly until the point where you decide to simply declare it's good enough. Which will be at about the same time people stop playing the game, or resign and simply turn the difficulty settings off altogether so they can get through the story, without being interrupted by some irritating GM temp who thinks their purpose is to make the game last for as long as possible.

But whatever. Are you absolutely sure you shouldn't just add more stat-points and more buttons to press, though? Along with a minimum limit you can't go below, just in case you start fiddling around too much and potentially are unable to defeat the first monster with any weapon, any tool, and any method in general? You know, to "balance" the game so even the most careless gamer will never, ever, run into any difficulty?

Just saying. After all, making bad choices and getting punished for it is clearly the antithesis to ANY GAME EVER DESIGNED since the beginning of history. In fact, why not put in an automatic playing mode where you can make a skill-check on the first turn to insure victory, based on your strongest stat-pool? That'd solve all your problems immediately!

spost
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by spost » July 4th, 2016, 12:57 pm

Literally registered just to comment in this thread.

Holy shit the salt. This would be hysterical if it weren't legitimately sad.

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