Some thoughts on random encounters

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Gizmo
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Gizmo » February 20th, 2018, 7:03 am

One mistake I'd not like to see made, is the one from Pillars of Eternity; namely the absolute requirement of an inventory item, in order to rest.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Grohal » February 20th, 2018, 9:45 am

Gizmo wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 7:03 am
One mistake I'd not like to see made, is the one from Pillars of Eternity; namely the absolute requirement of an inventory item, in order to rest.
I am with you in this. If you can rest in a game, you should be able to rest whereever you want (of course not in the middle of an enemy hotspot), whenever you want.
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Woolfe » February 20th, 2018, 10:04 am

Grohal wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 9:45 am
Gizmo wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 7:03 am
One mistake I'd not like to see made, is the one from Pillars of Eternity; namely the absolute requirement of an inventory item, in order to rest.
I am with you in this. If you can rest in a game, you should be able to rest whereever you want (of course not in the middle of an enemy hotspot), whenever you want.
No no... you can still rest there. Its just that you will immediately be disrupted by mobs going "keep off the grass" :lol:
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Godfather101 » February 20th, 2018, 10:33 am

More like "Get of my lawn" :D

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Grohal » February 20th, 2018, 12:03 pm

Woolfe wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 10:04 am
Grohal wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 9:45 am
Gizmo wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 7:03 am
One mistake I'd not like to see made, is the one from Pillars of Eternity; namely the absolute requirement of an inventory item, in order to rest.
I am with you in this. If you can rest in a game, you should be able to rest whereever you want (of course not in the middle of an enemy hotspot), whenever you want.
No no... you can still rest there. Its just that you will immediately be disrupted by mobs going "keep off the grass" :lol:
I doubt they will watch you rise your tent and then start shooting. :mrgreen:
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Drool » February 20th, 2018, 1:25 pm

Grohal wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 12:03 pm
I doubt they will watch you rise your tent and then start shooting. :mrgreen:
Sure they will. Let the target get to sleep first.
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Crosmando » February 25th, 2018, 5:24 am

Has there been any updates that indicate WL3 will have procedurally-generated maps for random encounters? Didn't like how in 2 you'd get the same locations over and over.
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Doni » February 25th, 2018, 5:52 am

HolyBanish wrote:
February 19th, 2018, 9:19 pm
[..]well the random encounters are bit hard to put up but i think it should be based on Fallout 2 percents like you would normally get 25% chance to get mobs, or farmer or a merchant.. special encounters should be appearing in certain areas like behind the radiation wall like shrines or loot caches right? but add bit more wacky encounters like you encounter a UFO or like in Fallout 2, oh man Fallout 2's system was so harsh when you get Enclave troops that plasma melt you or start firing these pew pew lasers at you as well, that is bit hard to avoid normally you had to travel south into main town on the map cells
Usually discussions here about random encounters always come down to some variation of Fallout2 world map travel encounters. Although technically it had a very basic system compared to games now days (each map tile had some terrain maps and encounters chances associated with it)

Personally, I understand the need for random mob encounters but overall find them annoying and cumbersome. I would prefer if the devs spend more time on preexisting "special encounters" (like in FO2, wacky or otherwise) or static hidden locations, but I doubt that will happen if they intend to cut on content for WL3.

Otherwise, it's hard to tell how to improve upon WL2 formula without seeing the whole picture. But they can always spice it with some more interesting encounters/maps, or maybe a light strategic on top (so the who, where and how often you fight will also be affected by your actions for example.) And I hope they consider allowing player content.
Gizmo wrote:
February 20th, 2018, 7:03 am
One mistake I'd not like to see made, is the one from Pillars of Eternity; namely the absolute requirement of an inventory item, in order to rest.
It prevented rest abuse (like in BG), encouraged the player to better manage their per rest abilities and spells, and was a minor resource sink on higher levels. Furthermore it came with designated camping spots, which has very big effect on level design. IMO overall it fit very well there.

I am not sure exactly what you have in mind with fatigue (you went as far as camping mini-game) but overall it should achieve the same thing as PoE per rest abilities, and thus you'd encounter the same rest abuse issue.
demeisen wrote:
February 19th, 2018, 3:06 pm
I'd be a fan of it. I liked mechanics which make for no guarantee of being able to totally recuperate when out in the field away from safety, so you have to manage your risk. It lends the game more of a "survival" feel.
That sound nice but tends to be annoying in practice, wears out your F8 key, and makes you wonder about the lack of verity in loading screens.

Also if upon resting you can be attacked by random mobs, wouldn't that entail that upon resting/re-entering a map wilderness creatures should be re-spawn as well? And I really don't see the appeal of cultivating a herd of crazy goats on my travels.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Gizmo » February 25th, 2018, 6:21 am

Doni wrote:
February 25th, 2018, 5:52 am
It prevented rest abuse (like in BG), encouraged the player to be better manage their per rest abilities and spells, and was a minor resource sink on higher levels. Furthermore it came with designated camping spots, which has very big effect on level design. IMO overall it fit very well there.

I am not sure exactly what you have in mind with fatigue (you went as far as camping mini-game) but overall it should achieve the same thing as PoE per rest abilities, and thus you'd encounter the same rest abuse issue.
They could have done that with wandering monster encounters. Any party should be able to rest wherever they are willing to gamble it. In practice, my game was eventually stalled —and I quit playing, when my party passed through an unexpectedly one-way door that lead to the lower levels, bypassing an undiscovered major fight. It resulted in my party getting utterly exhausted two levels further down, hopelessly outmatched, and unable to rest until returning to the surface—but that was impossible, because of the major conflict at the top of the stairs two levels up. This is despite having a cleared level with only neutral or friendly NPCs present. They could leisurely spend a week there, but never sleep or recuperate for lack of the silly campfire item. :(

**For that matter, they could have allowed rest at a tenth the recovery rate for lack of the camping equipment, and it wouldn't have broken the game as bad as having that mandatory item requirement for any rest at all.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Doni » February 25th, 2018, 3:59 pm

Unknowingly stepping into unwinnable situation is annoying, but what you describe seem more like a possible level design issue with Endless Paths of Od Nua. Although ignoring the many warnings and venturing forth without being fully prepared (and or keeping a backup save) may not have been your best decision (Btw you could see these tunnels in the Kickstarter map)

Anyway, keep in mind that in that fantasy setting spells and abilities had unlimited "ammo", so by restricting the ability to simply rest between each fight you turned them into a finite resource, one which the player had to manage and the level designers could use to better plan their dungeons as a whole.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Gizmo » February 25th, 2018, 4:49 pm

Doni wrote:
February 25th, 2018, 3:59 pm
Unknowingly stepping into unwinnable situation is annoying, but what you describe seem more like a possible level design issue with Endless Paths of Od Nua. Although ignoring the many warnings and venturing forth without being fully prepared (and or keeping a backup save) may not have been your best decision (Btw you could see these tunnels in the Kickstarter map)
This was not the problem; the fights were not too difficult, it was the complete and utter lack of any means to camp without returning to the surface—that's bad design, no two ways about it. I understand the reasoning for the camp equipment requirement, but it was hamfisted. After clearing two levels of enemies, the party was worn down, and despite having ample space to safely rest—indefinitely, the game doesn't allow it for the silliest of in-game reasoning.
Anyway, keep in mind that in that fantasy setting spells and abilities had unlimited "ammo", so by restricting the ability to simply rest between each fight you turned them into a finite resource, one which the player had to manage and the level designers could use to better plan their dungeons as a whole.
I prefer the Bard's Tale solution, where the bard had to return to town for a stiff drink; and the spellcasters need to feel the Sun.
(Or the simple system of getting attacked in the night—before recovery.)

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Doni » February 25th, 2018, 6:31 pm

Gizmo wrote:
February 25th, 2018, 4:49 pm
I prefer the Bard's Tale solution, where the bard had to return to town for a stiff drink;
That would make the bard abilities a finite resource as well. But unless there is something else to this, being forced to hike back to town after any major encounter would be annoying, and encourage hording songs for to the boss fight. As well as limit the designers in the size/difficulty of dungeons.

Meanwhile PoE camping supplies offer more flexibility for the level designer (they can introduce them as loot as needed, with more natural flow and less extreme difficulty curves), allow the player to replenish midway and experiment with their abilities, and use difficulty setting to shrink the safety belt they offer. Also don't forget that in PoE all classes had abilities and thus rest played a much bigger role than Bulders gate for example; they had some big dungones; and other systems like the inventory stash that intertwined with it.

Overall both systems likely achieve the same thing by different means that are tailored for its setting. The real question is whether you think that something like this is needed in WL3 and how to tailor it to its setting (although if it isn't about random encounters or at least world travel, it might be better if you start a new thread)

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Grohal » February 26th, 2018, 3:11 am

Gizmo wrote:
February 25th, 2018, 4:49 pm

...I prefer the Bard's Tale solution, where the bard had to return to town for a stiff drink; and the spellcasters need to feel the Sun.
(Or the simple system of getting attacked in the night—before recovery.)
Well I like being able to rest AND being in danger of an ambush if I do that, BUT it should be within reason:

1. Most important: No resting deep in enemy territory (enemy base especially unless I have killed anyone in there) and in expanded sight of enemies (meaning at least a rough mile distance (or whatever makes sense in RL) between night camp and patrolling enemies, so they can't hear me even if the wind blows in their direction).
2. IF my rangers get attacked by, let's say raiders and I manage to shot them all there should be no other group of raiders coming to attack that night. Maybe if some escape they come back with reinforcements. But of course...
3. Killed raiders laying on the groud bleeding out MIGHT attract wolves, wild dogs or other animals that can smell blood some distance away.
4. Way more immersive that way than being attacked 5 times in a row by a dozend gobli... sorry raiders. And SHOULD not be THAT hard to implent. :mrgreen:
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Doni » February 26th, 2018, 4:21 am

1. Harassing a strong enemy force by killing them one by one and resting around the corner between fights is how people often abused the resting mechanic. Another good thing about the PoE camping system is that it allows the designer to designate a place where it make sense to rest in that environment, instead of some arbitrary distance that suppose to make sense everywhere.

2. The main problem with rest encounters is that they generally meaningless annoyance which allows for rest abuse and that most people find such random mobs mind bogging boring (which is why by popular demand we have the outdoors skill to skip world map random encounters.) You can discourage rest abuse by increasing the risk/difficulty, but that will annoy most people who will ask for some sort of outdoors skill which would render rest encounters into meaningless annoyance again.

In PoE the number of rest is limited (which encourage resource management) and you can rest only in specific location (which prompt risk/reward decision) without all the meaningless annoyance, if you make the right choice you are rewarded otherwise you have to track back.

3. Are you suggesting that dead bodies should attract wildlife everywhere, or just during rest encounters? If the former, such ideas often brought about to make the map feel more dynamic (along with random mobs respawns) but in practice its just annoying, I'd prefer less random mob spwans to plow through and more interesting hand crafted encounters.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Grohal » February 26th, 2018, 5:49 am

Doni wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 4:21 am
...

3. Are you suggesting that dead bodies should attract wildlife everywhere, or just during rest encounters? If the former, such ideas often brought about to make the map feel more dynamic (along with random mobs respawns) but in practice its just annoying, I'd prefer less random mob spwans to plow through and more interesting hand crafted encounters.
No, this was thought way easier: If I fended off a raider attack at night rest, killing all of them and try to rest again there should NOT be a second attack from raiders. Of course it will not stop other enemies to show up - the wildlife was just an example.
If some raiders were just repelled and retreated * there COULD be another attack of the same raiders - with reinforcements.

*another BIG immersion breaker was that almost all enemies always fought to the death, never retreated in WL 2. That was way better in Wasteland 1. So please bring back fleeing, retreating enemies if the body count goes up.
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Gizmo » February 26th, 2018, 8:35 am

Doni wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 4:21 am
1. Harassing a strong enemy force by killing them one by one and resting around the corner between fights is how people often abused the resting mechanic.
It's interesting that this doesn't work in the Disciples series. In that game, it is not just the player's party that improves with combat, all enemies do so as well. It's a serious risk to attack an enemy (or enemy party), and not finish the fight. They get combat experience from that, and the player can actually level up their opponents, who can be much stronger the next time; and might even have new higher leveled abilities.
Grohal wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 5:49 am
*another BIG immersion breaker was that almost all enemies always fought to the death, never retreated in WL 2. That was way better in Wasteland 1. So please bring back fleeing, retreating enemies if the body count goes up.
This sounds very good in theory, but (sadly) in practice, it results in a turn based chase. This happened in Fallout, and even the SSI Gold Box titles. It was great when morale would break... so long as it wasn't a case of seizing defeat from the jaws of victory.

In SSI's games, the enemy might get trapped (like in a blind alley), unable to flee to the edge of the map—and so could be caught. In the Fallout's it could happen that the fleeing enemy passes the edge of the map, beyond where the player can see them, or target them... and it was then up to the NPC party members to venture off the map after the fleeing enemies.

I would still like the option, of course, but I would want the feature to be well tested.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Grohal » February 26th, 2018, 9:12 am

Gizmo wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 8:35 am

Grohal wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 5:49 am
*another BIG immersion breaker was that almost all enemies always fought to the death, never retreated in WL 2. That was way better in Wasteland 1. So please bring back fleeing, retreating enemies if the body count goes up.
This sounds very good in theory, but (sadly) in practice, it results in a turn based chase. This happened in Fallout, and even the SSI Gold Box titles. It was great when morale would break... so long as it wasn't a case of seizing defeat from the jaws of victory.

In SSI's games, the enemy might get trapped (like in a blind alley), unable to flee to the edge of the map—and so could be caught. In the Fallout's it could happen that the fleeing enemy passes the edge of the map, beyond where the player can see them, or target them... and it was then up to the NPC party members to venture off the map after the fleeing enemies.

I would still like the option, of course, but I would want the feature to be well tested.
Well, especially the random battlemaps were rather small imo. So I don't think fleeing enemies would be that much of a problem.
Battles in cities or other big areas are another thing, but maybe this can also be handled like in Wasteland 1. If they can get out of sight, the battle should end. They should still carry on trying to leave the map, but unless I go in the same direction I won't start a new fight with the same survivors.
This way it would be up to the player if they wanna take them all out (and stoping them from returning - maybe with reinforcements later) or just let them go away as a warning they just messed with the wrong people.
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Drool » February 26th, 2018, 2:48 pm

Gizmo wrote:
February 25th, 2018, 4:49 pm
This was not the problem; the fights were not too difficult, it was the complete and utter lack of any means to camp without returning to the surface
At least you could save the game without going back to the surface?
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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Gizmo » February 26th, 2018, 2:51 pm

Drool wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 2:48 pm
At least you could save the game without going back to the surface?
True, but in this case it's not helpful. The PCs have no special abilities (left), and a couple of hit points a piece; this after clearing two entire floors full of enemies, with no option to rest, and no option to return to the surface. They are stuck, and will die in the first seconds of the battle at the top of the stairs, leading out; a battle they did not knowingly pass by on their way down... and yet the levels below are now emptied, or have neutral/friendly NPCs.

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Re: Some thoughts on random encounters

Post by Doni » February 27th, 2018, 3:20 am

Drool wrote:
February 26th, 2018, 2:48 pm
At least you could save the game without going back to the surface?
Yes, unless he played on iron man mode.

Long story short, his curiosity got the better of him, ignoring the warnings and the state of his worn down party, and recklessly jumped down the sacrificial chamber pit into the warm embrace of the blood cult priest on a much deeper (harder) area of Od Nua.. with expected FUN results :P

Anyway, it has nothing todo with camping supplies, but a specific dungeon of with Od Nua. A completely optional mega dungeon designed to offer challenge for the player through out the whole game. People often speak against level scaling, how older freeroam games where players could find themselves hopelessly outmatched and make bad choices were great, but they still expect the game to hand hold them..

And I don't know what exactly he did but the way back was couple of halls away, or one reload from few minutes back. Feels like he just didn't get into the game and was looking for an excuse to quit :|

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