Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

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Grohal
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Grohal » October 21st, 2016, 11:44 pm

Zombra wrote: Strongly disagree. The original Wasteland wasn't about scarcity at all, and even Wasteland 2 isn't anywhere close to being a "survival" game. The open spaces are thick with hordes of predatory mutants growing fat off of eating each other. Life isn't pretty, but it is thriving. W2 pays lip service to scarcity as part of the story, but the gameplay practice completely contradicts this (which is OK).
I didn't speak of scarcity in way of food and water. I meant ammo and better guns:
Well WL 1 has been an age ago, but I remember that my pistols ran dry pretty quickly and later with the first SMGs it was another round of dry guns. I also remember that I held to the pistols a long time, because either I couldn't find better weapons (first SMG I got was from the gang boss Ugly if I remember right) and once I had it I was nearly always out of ammo for that Uzi.
Maybe I remember that wrong, but back in 88/89 I found Wasteland way more taxing and lacking then the optically close Ultima. That was what I always loved about post-apocalyptic. :mrgreen:
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Gillsing » October 22nd, 2016, 12:17 am

I don't remember running out of ammo in Wasteland, and I didn't start disk-swapping to re-loot areas until I wanted more Meson Cannons and Ion Beamers. The shops sold 255 'clips' of 9mm, .45 and 7.62mm, and enemies dropped plenty. Last playthrough I had a single Ranger who put all points into Luck, which boosted damage by 1D6 per 10 points of Luck, per bullet. Ran around with Power Armor and full auto SMGs in Base Cochise. Enough dakka to waste just about any group of robots, and plenty of 'clips' to pick up in Quartz and Needles. Don't think I ever needed to buy from a shop. There's just a lot of ammo in Wasteland.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Grohal » October 22nd, 2016, 6:10 am

Gillsing wrote:I don't remember running out of ammo in Wasteland, and I didn't start disk-swapping to re-loot areas until I wanted more Meson Cannons and Ion Beamers. The shops sold 255 'clips' of 9mm, .45 and 7.62mm, and enemies dropped plenty. Last playthrough I had a single Ranger who put all points into Luck, which boosted damage by 1D6 per 10 points of Luck, per bullet. Ran around with Power Armor and full auto SMGs in Base Cochise. Enough dakka to waste just about any group of robots, and plenty of 'clips' to pick up in Quartz and Needles. Don't think I ever needed to buy from a shop. There's just a lot of ammo in Wasteland.
Mmh, strange. I have a whole different memory of Wasteland, maybe I did more grinding than you (I am a grinding player), maybe my memory plays tricks on me.
Maybe I should play Wasteland again. :mrgreen:
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by paultakeda » October 22nd, 2016, 8:33 am

Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:people like to save scum
No, we don't. You'll need to get that through your head before having any chance of contributing to the conversation.
You don't. Others do. Some don't even call it scumming. You call it that and in a way it is derogatory and prejudicial. You need to get that through your head: you are not the only opiniated player.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Zombra » October 22nd, 2016, 9:25 am

paultakeda wrote:
Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:people like to save scum
No, we don't. You'll need to get that through your head before having any chance of contributing to the conversation.
You don't. Others do. Some don't even call it scumming. You call it that and in a way it is derogatory and prejudicial. You need to get that through your head: you are not the only opiniated player.
Now who's defending an imaginary constituency? I've never seen someone enthuse about a game with such bad systems that they "get to" joyfully reload all the time.

"Oh boy! I get to reload over and over instead of playing a good game!" Feel free to link that quote.
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Lord of Riva » October 22nd, 2016, 9:55 am

Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:
Zombra wrote: No, we don't. You'll need to get that through your head before having any chance of contributing to the conversation.
You don't. Others do. Some don't even call it scumming. You call it that and in a way it is derogatory and prejudicial. You need to get that through your head: you are not the only opiniated player.
Now who's defending an imaginary constituency? I've never seen someone enthuse about a game with such bad systems that they "get to" joyfully reload all the time.

"Oh boy! I get to reload over and over instead of playing a good game!" Feel free to link that quote.
i beg to differ. everyone saying they like to save and reload whenever they want like these system.

I like to be able to reload if some of the mechanics are not to my liking even if other things are excellent. This way i can enjoy games even if they have shitty hacking games like Deus Ex mankind divided. *shrug*

Oh boy! I get to reload over and over again regarding something i dont like even if everything else is great!

EDIT: to add for clarification: what im saying is that no games thus far are made exactly for what i like and no game is perfect and thats completely okay. Everyone has different tastes. That why it is extremely important to give this option so everyone can decide on their own how they want to play. And again i do not think it is any problem a game developer should even think about if some people are unable to resist wanting the best outcome.

the question is rather: why dont you embrace what you evidently want yourself? nobody is forcing you

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by marceror » October 22nd, 2016, 10:23 am

Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:
Zombra wrote: No, we don't. You'll need to get that through your head before having any chance of contributing to the conversation.
You don't. Others do. Some don't even call it scumming. You call it that and in a way it is derogatory and prejudicial. You need to get that through your head: you are not the only opiniated player.
Now who's defending an imaginary constituency? I've never seen someone enthuse about a game with such bad systems that they "get to" joyfully reload all the time.

"Oh boy! I get to reload over and over instead of playing a good game!" Feel free to link that quote.
Hey, if you two can't work out your differences I'm going to have to contact a modera.... Oh, wait. :P

On the rare occasions that I choose to reload a save I'm glad to have the option. I'm not typically a fan of game that don't allow this.... My 1/2 scrap.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Zombra » October 22nd, 2016, 11:36 am

Lord of Riva wrote:I like to be able to reload if some of the mechanics are not to my liking even if other things are excellent. This way i can enjoy games even if they have shitty hacking games like Deus Ex mankind divided. *shrug*
Wouldn't it be better if DX had a good hacking minigame? :?
Lord of Riva wrote:Oh boy! I get to reload over and over again regarding something i dont like even if everything else is great!
No reply to this, but I enjoyed your turning my argument on its head. Nice one, I laughed :lol:
Lord of Riva wrote:what im saying is that no games thus far are made exactly for what i like and no game is perfect and thats completely okay. Everyone has different tastes. That why it is extremely important to give this option so everyone can decide on their own how they want to play.
That's fair and I have no problem with it. Again, what I really want is for there to be good game mechanics that don't call for scumming in the first place.

I don't want a game that essentially tells me not to play it - which is what Wasteland 2 did.

Also, I don't see anyone actively defending how safes, lockboxes, alarms worked in Wasteland 2. At best, I see "I just tried once or twice and then wandered off." Not a ringing endorsement. If these systems were removed entirely, there wouldn't be any strenuous complaints and people would soon forget about them. Combine that with the fact that people like me venomously hated the system, and it adds up to the idea that it could be done better.

If the system is going to suck and reward scumming, then yes, I am in favor of harder strictures to make scumming unprofitable again. But I would rather just have scumming be unprofitable in the first place.
Lord of Riva wrote:the question is rather: why dont you embrace what you evidently want yourself? nobody is forcing you
Compulsive behavior is addictive. One does not pursue it because they "want to".

I'm going to draw an extreme analogy here. Heroin feels good to take in the moment, but heroin addicts are not happy people. When an addict says, "Please get the pushers off the playground", it is not appropriate to say, "Hey, they're not forcing you! Everything's fine. Just stop taking it if you don't want to."

I don't remember if you were around for these arguments in the early days, but here's a link to a great article about game design and how it can manipulate player behavior. As a player susceptible to this kind of thing, I don't like it and don't appreciate its inclusion in any design. In this case, I especially don't like it because I don't think inXile was even trying to reward this behavior - they just didn't think about it enough to not reward it.
marceror wrote:Hey, if you two can't work out your differences I'm going to have to contact a modera.... Oh, wait. :P
:lol:
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Drool » October 22nd, 2016, 12:22 pm

Grohal wrote:Maybe I should play Wasteland again. :mrgreen:
Always.

Also, the only ammo I really ever found particularly scarce was Power Packs. I think the only time I drained stores of ammo was 7.62 and I think that was when I was trying to kill the Night Terror with an AK97. Generally, the only ammo scarcity ever happened when first switching to SMGs because I didn't have enough money to buy enough ammo as opposed to there not being enough lying around.

And really, you probably should be set on ammo by the time you finish Quartz. Between the Courthouse, Ugly's, and the Stagecoach Inn, there's a lot of ammo.
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Ronin73 » October 22nd, 2016, 4:11 pm

Gillsing wrote:Last playthrough I had a single Ranger who put all points into Luck, which boosted damage by 1D6 per 10 points of Luck, per bullet. Ran around with Power Armor and full auto SMGs in Base Cochise. Enough dakka to waste just about any group of robots, and plenty of 'clips' to pick up in Quartz and Needles.
Never even tried running SMG's in Cochise before but it's really cool that it can be done.
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by paultakeda » October 23rd, 2016, 8:13 am

Zombra wrote:"Oh boy! I get to reload over and over instead of playing a good game!" Feel free to link that quote.
Who cares what one does for their game? It doesn't affect yours. There is an entire thread concerning save anywhere back during the WL2 funding period. The fact that that thread and this one continue to grow rapidly should tell you that opinions are divided.

I don't save scum but I certainly advocate save anywhere. Limiting saves will compromise my style of play. On the other hand, providing save anywhere will not compromise yours, even if for some reason it makes you think the game is now "bad design" because it allows it.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Zombra » October 23rd, 2016, 10:24 am

paultakeda wrote:Who cares what one does for their game? It doesn't affect yours.
Of course it does. If sticking with a bad design that no one actually likes means that I am encouraged to save scum, I am absolutely affected, and for no good reason. Did you think the % chance, critical failure, reload until you're bored design of safes and lockboxes is the best they could do? Or are you just like meh, I didn't have a problem with it?
paultakeda wrote:There is an entire thread concerning save anywhere back during the WL2 funding period. The fact that that thread and this one continue to grow rapidly should tell you that opinions are divided.
Obviously, but one side is in favor of generic freedom and the other side is in favor of elevating the design to actually be better for everyone while maintaining generic freedom.
paultakeda wrote:I don't save scum but I certainly advocate save anywhere. Limiting saves will compromise my style of play.
Fair enough.
paultakeda wrote:On the other hand, providing save anywhere will not compromise yours, even if for some reason it makes you think the game is now "bad design" because it allows it.
The save system itself isn't the problem. It's the way the save system interacts with game mechanics to reward behaviors that are destructive to gameplay. I would rather these systems interact to discourage destructive behaviors. Limiting saves is just one way to do that, and if that's too heavy-handed, fine. Good even, as it leads us to the more desirable approach of refining proper gameplay.

The argument is old, but this very thread has some new ideas about how to do just that. Check it out if you haven't read the whole thing. Maybe you can even add some constructive ideas of your own.

--------------

Actually, let me touch on something again.
paultakeda wrote:Limiting saves will compromise my style of play.
Is this honestly true?

I'm specifically curious about the save limitations that were present in Wasteland 2. Did you find it problematic that you couldn't save at any time during combat?* Or do you just find the concept annoying in the abstract?

*You'll be unsurprised to learn that I found that the limitation enhanced gameplay significantly.
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by paultakeda » October 23rd, 2016, 10:31 pm

Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:Who cares what one does for their game? It doesn't affect yours.
Of course it does. If sticking with a bad design that no one actually likes means that I am encouraged to save scum, I am absolutely affected, and for no good reason. Did you think the % chance, critical failure, reload until you're bored design of safes and lockboxes is the best they could do? Or are you just like meh, I didn't have a problem with it?
Improving how the world operated with regards to the RNG and the algorithms behind it is fine by me. I am simply stating that save anywhere remain a feature of the game.
Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:There is an entire thread concerning save anywhere back during the WL2 funding period. The fact that that thread and this one continue to grow rapidly should tell you that opinions are divided.
Obviously, but one side is in favor of generic freedom and the other side is in favor of elevating the design to actually be better for everyone while maintaining generic freedom.
This is a nuance that needs to be described. I have no issue with spending resources on elevating design to be "better". But understand that this "better" is relative. For those who do not, as put, save scum, the improvement is negligible. For those who like to exploit the mechanic, it could be detrimental to their own experience (at no experience to YOUR experience) to the point where it can compromise sales. Striving to achieve a perception of what is better according to you can make a game less appetizing to others, and in the end, the imposition never hurt you while it hurts them. So why impose?
Zombra wrote: The way the save system interacts with game mechanics to reward behaviors that are destructive to gameplay. I would rather these systems interact to discourage destructive behaviors. Limiting saves is just one way to do that, and if that's too heavy-handed, fine. Good even, as it leads us to the more desirable approach of refining proper gameplay.
When you say destructive, again you have to ask yourself: is it destructive towards you? Truly, does it affect you if someone else exploits the save mechanic? Their experience may be, to you, cheapened, but for them, it isn't at all seen through that lens.

You can introduce a multitude of ways that can make it so save scumming is impractical. But the expense of resources to that design may take away from other aspects where I would, personally, prefer resources are devoted.

And considering that, ultimately, the way one plays a game is their own, and save anywhere allows anyone to play as they would like, including those who decide to iron man it (why do you need a mode? DON'T SAVE, do you really need a nanny bot? some Iron Man you are), there is very little ROI in trying to discourage "save scumming". On the other hand, there can be an enriching experience if you make certain things like locked doors and boxes more complex to improve the "immersive experience"; I just wouldn't use save scumming as the primary reason to justify the effort.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Zombra » October 23rd, 2016, 11:42 pm

paultakeda wrote:When you say destructive, again you have to ask yourself: is it destructive towards you? Truly, does it affect you if someone else exploits the save mechanic?
You really didn't read the thread, did you?

Yes, Wasteland 2's scum-rewarding system was substantially, measurably, directly, unquestionably destructive to my personal enjoyment.
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by paultakeda » October 24th, 2016, 7:29 am

Zombra wrote:I'm specifically curious about the save limitations that were present in Wasteland 2. Did you find it problematic that you couldn't save at any time during combat?* Or do you just find the concept annoying in the abstract?
I like branching development in my characters. While some enjoy restarting a game from the very beginning with a new set, I tend to always have the same set but develop them differently through branches save points. I specifically tend to save when I think a substantial world changing decision needs to be made so I can play through one, then reload and see the other. This is a convenience function for me as I do not have to go back to the beginning and speedrun/work my way back to that branch point.

Restricting saving during combat doesn't bother me unless combat is ridiculously long (I'm looking at you, Gold Box SSI).
Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:When you say destructive, again you have to ask yourself: is it destructive towards you? Truly, does it affect you if someone else exploits the save mechanic?
You really didn't read the thread, did you?

Yes, Wasteland 2's scum-rewarding system was substantially, measurably, directly, unquestionably destructive to my personal enjoyment.
Oh, I read that. I'm sorry you couldn't control yourself, but I don't want a nanny function. Are there others out there like you? Sure. But as in real life, you will have to find support outside of the game to control your urges. Is that harsh? Maybe. Now perhaps I should have addressed this earlier when you read this:
paultakeda wrote:Implementing similar mechanics will work fine except for the diehard save scummer who wants to preserve every lock and lockpick and doesn't want to do battle.

You can't code for that edge case and frankly, you shouldn't care seeing as when you are playing your instance of the game it is on you to decide on whether or not you are going to exit immersion and reload because of a crappy RNG.
And thought it meant this:
Zombra mistranslating paultakeda wrote:There's nothing wrong with a system that rewards compulsive behavior, even when it would be very easy to implement one that didn't. A Skinner Box is an excellent game design. If you don't like it, simply don't be a compulsive person! Problem solved! Most gamers aren't compulsive, you know; that's why things like Steam achievements are so unpopular and World of Warcraft was such a failure.
I chose to ignore it but this may have been a mistake as it left you with a false assumption of my stance, so I'll respond here: I do not view the save function as part of game design. As to a system that rewards compulsive behavior, this again, however harsh it may be, has more to do with individuals playing a game and abusing (to their mind) that save function. I don't mind changing how locks work. I pretty much said that. But I also said that I do not mind if a person actually likes to play that way (there are those who do and like playing that way, no matter how you insist that there are not). This is more or less in line with your example but let me use a legal example that is closer to what we are discussing: gambling. People gamble in many ways and there are some fairly heavy gamblers. The mechanics of how a game operates can be gambled upon in a variety of ways and as such, they can be abused by those who cannot control themselves and essentially get into trouble because of their addiction. Changing how the game operates or limiting how gambling operates to discourage compulsive behavior isn't a solve for those who have an addiction but it can discourage actual play for those who do not have this compulsion but play/gamble in any of the ways that are abused by those who do. The solve, ultimately, can never be in-game because the problem is not in-game.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by dorkboy » October 24th, 2016, 8:34 am

Yeah, the old "save/load is not a part of the game design, but lack thereof is" argument.

The thing is, this circular argument only persists for as long as the anti-savescumming game design feature is mandatory, in the same way that the lack of such a feature is mandatory if there is no such feature.

If only there was some way to provide those features only to people who wanted to use them. ;)
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Zombra » October 24th, 2016, 10:19 am

paultakeda wrote:Restricting saving during combat doesn't bother me
I'm honestly confused then. How can you be so adamantly opposed to any kind of save restrictions ... and then say that some kinds of save restrictions don't bother you at all?
paultakeda wrote:I do not view the save function as part of game design.
This has always been your cornerstone. I've thought about it and I'm perfectly willing to concede ... as it is an entirely semantic point. From now on, I'm not talking about "game design" but "system design" ... as in the overall system that is Wasteland 2. Quicksave may not be part of the so-called "game" by your definition, but it is part of Wasteland 2, and it does have an effect on how everyone plays the game.
paultakeda wrote:I do not mind if a person actually likes to play that way (there are those who do and like playing that way, no matter how you insist that there are not).
I can't see how you can ever get me to believe that it brings joy to the heart to press quickload 20 times in a row, any more than I can believe that the woman clicking chests is having a good time.
paultakeda wrote:Changing how the game operates or limiting how gambling operates to discourage compulsive behavior isn't a solve for those who have an addiction
Of course it is. When you discourage a behavior, it will happen less. From what I understand this is the fundamental way to cure addiction.
paultakeda wrote:How about a nice game of chess?
I've never had the patience for chess, but the sentiment is appreciated :)
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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by paultakeda » October 24th, 2016, 10:25 pm

Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:Restricting saving during combat doesn't bother me
I'm honestly confused then. How can you be so adamantly opposed to any kind of save restrictions ... and then say that some kinds of save restrictions don't bother you at all?
It's more historical than anything else. Combat is a special zone with a combat grid and I view it as its own space.
Zombra wrote:
paultakeda wrote:Changing how the game operates or limiting how gambling operates to discourage compulsive behavior isn't a solve for those who have an addiction
Of course it is. When you discourage a behavior, it will happen less. From what I understand this is the fundamental way to cure addiction.
I always thought the first step was to admit to the problem, then going from there. Also, discouraging the behavior versus limiting the behavior are two different things.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Dork Mage » October 25th, 2016, 5:21 pm

Zombra has admitted to the "habit"....
Also, has stated why the present system is problematic.
Also, has spoken to others with a similar "habit" and they also find the present system dissatisfying.

I suspect that InXile's rational to put "worthless" loot in 99% of the containers was an attempt at dis-incentivizing "save-scumming."
Actually I think it was explicitly stated in a forum reply or perhaps an update.

Maybe you get one try at a container (upon each entry into the zone).

A critical-success will open it (no matter what your skill level).

If you have a high enough skill the container will open after three tries (at most).
It can jam where you are informed that repair is necessary.
It can be un-jammed if you have high enough repair
If your repair skill is too low, you are informed your repair skill is too low and can't attempt a repair.

If your lock skill is too low and you don't get the crit-success, you are informed you skill is too low and are prevented from further attempts.

Start over when you enter the zone again (history of need for repair remains).
[do you really want to start the zone over for a container that is guaranteed to open within three tries with a high enough skill?]

Of course you can bash it or blow it up with risk of destroying the contents.

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Re: Save-Scumming and Wasteland 3

Post by Caerdon » February 18th, 2017, 8:43 pm

A bit late to the party here, but here's my two cents anyway...

Firstly, I'm a save-scummer. I try not to be. Sometimes I succeed. Sometimes I don't. But even when I do, keeping myself from save-scumming takes a lot of mental effort and reduces my enjoyment of a game.

Think of me what you will, but the fact remains: I enjoy games more if they discourage or downright prevent save-scumming. And I know I'm not alone.

Secondly, preventing most of the save-scumming when it comes to containers and alarms and such is really not difficult at all, all it takes is predeterministic random seed generation and some careful planning. (I've been programming as a hobby for about 25 years so I have some idea what I'm talking about.)

This is one way it could work in practise:
  1. The game generates a master seed when a new game is started
  2. The master seed is used to derive a seed for every area in the game
  3. Area seed is used to derive a seed for every container in that area
  4. Container seed is used to derive a seed for every potential PC
  5. PC seed is used to derive a seed for every skill level form 1 to 10
  6. This final seed is used every time when the dice are rolled
The result is that when character A with lockpick skill at level B tries to open container C in area D, the result is always the same. The result is likely to be different for different combination of A, B, C and D. If a specific character can't open a specific container, they can re-try when they increase their skill. Character level could easily be taken into consideration as well.

I don't know why so few games do this. It's a rather simple system, and it works.

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