Skills at higher levels need to have a purpose

most skills dont really have value after level 10. survival is not useful after level 5.

i think we need to make skills more fine grained. so each level adds less, but you can keep getting better above 10. i think we should have caps at 50 or 100. yes you can get skills to any level now but it doesn’t do anything.

  1. each level you gained helps less than now.
  2. gaining at lower levels is a little easier, but slows down as you go up
  3. for crafting and survival, add % chance to make better items so even if you can ‘craft’ all items by a certain level, they won’t necessarily have that high of a chance of being great items
  4. will make skill rust more effective, since with more levels you really can’t be good at everything.

I think most people turn skill rust off, cause they find it annoying. However, if you dont have a way to limit all skills, you turn into rambo and everybody basically is the same. So as an alternative to skill rust, how about this?

  1. more total skill points you get, the harder it is to raise ALL skills.
  2. combine this with getting harder to raise skills at higher level. So if you want to be great at melee and you pick up other skills, then your melee not only gets harder to raise at high levels, its harder to raise cause your good at other stuff too.
  3. special combat bonuses at high skill for that type of item. so really high melee increases chance of ‘critical’ (see weapon proficiencies below) and so on.
  4. forces more specialization and adds to the roguelike feel. so you can play with different play styles each time.

Weapon Proficiencies:
add weapon proficiencies more detailed than what we have. if you use one type of gun alot and one type of melee alot you get skill in that weapon on top of and above what we have now. again, forces more ‘specialization’. so you can try different things everytime you play. higher proficiencies incresae chances of criticals for that weapon only.

Another idea to limit the end-game God mode is to have the player pick proficiencies at the start, along with traits. This would determine your level cap for certain skills. If you are kinesthesic, you can get higher melee/firearms skills, but not so much in more technicaly skills like electronics or cooking. Things like that.

It has been talked about that the crafting and item system will be improved to allow for different qualities and the like. At which point higher crafting skills will probably make a bigger impact.

I do think that skills should either be harder to improve as you obtain higher levels of them, or at least each level should given diminishing returns after a certain point.

A clear concept of what constitutes ‘professional’ level for all skills would be useful to have. For example, what would a professional fighter have? Probably 6 melee and 6 hand-to-hand as a minimum. Anything above that would be degrees of exceptionalism.

If you balance around a ‘pivot’ point in skills (in this case professionalism) you can sort of have the systems err toward keeping the characters around level 6 in skills by making skill rust faster above level 6 and slower beneath it. And making it easier to raise skills below level 5 and harder above it. That way you could say yes, you can raise X skill to ten, and you will be truly exceptional in that skill, but it will take some effort and dedication and it is unlikely you could maintain more than one to three exceptional skills.

Then you just balance all of the skill effects around level 6 sort of being the optimal, with each level above that giving diminishing returns in exchange for higher maintenance on the part of the player.

Howsabout we not nerf skills until AFTER it’s possible to get people to help out with skills the player lacks? As it is, the player kinda needs to be able to do everything.

As for levels, well, skills rust faster at higher levels already.

/has seen a perfectly good roguelike RPG ruined by excessively harsh skill controls

Maybe a future advantage of having high skills could be that some actions like butchering, welding or wood chopping are less exhausting(with a stamina system) and take less time. Fighting with high skill could also be less physically stressing compared to someone who never fought before and wears himself out quickly.

Mechanic of 80+ is nice. So many engines to install :).

Mechanic of 80+ is nice. So many engines to install :).
Add 90+ cooking skill with that and you have an Inline-4 burning apple cider. :-D

Do you have experience in game design? Because, imho, you hit the nail on the head.

I would add that at some point you have to put a cap on skills. No matter how good you are at punching there comes a point at which you have to limit how good a player can become at unarmed, otherwise they are walking around killing Hulks by flicking them with a finger.

Unless we want that sort of DBZ craziness. It’s a design/flavor choice. It seems to me we’ve been trying to keep more towards the realism side of things (food/starvation system + addictions and diseases) while also having some fun (mutations, giant wheeled murder factories).

I’m always wary of a system that allows a player to progress to a point where there’s no chance of failure. Without risk and consequences there’s no challenge. Without challenge there’s no game.

They are going to put an stamina and exhaustion system toghether, so it could exhaust you. Cool.

I would rather hold off on making any sort of difficulty-related changes to the system until the game is in a more complete state. I say this because it’s pretty much near impossible to balance anything considering that the factor that would provide the greatest difficulty or aid, NPCs, is not in the game yet, and for me at least, I’m not quite certain what form NPCs will take in this game.

We could argue that unarmed specialists are awesome or too good with the system we’re running now because they’re running around kicking multiple hulk zombie butts. Then the unarmed specialist runs into a hostile NPC faction armed with shotguns and is killed instantly by three or four shotgun blasts in one turn. Same with cars; NPCs armed with grenades could be problematic, let alone ones with explosive guns like LAWs or charge rifles, or high powered sniper rifles, etc. There’s no particular reason that NPCs wouldn’t have access to mutations or bionics either, given the ease of the player attaining them.

Once they’re in in some sort of working order, I anticipate the game becoming extremely difficult, as the only real ranged threat we have in the game now are robots, and they’re usually almost always encountered in a situation where their threat can be/is minimized. Lacking NPCs and the wildcard they represent, it would be unwise to reduce the effectiveness of the player, especially when the player is all on his lonesome. The player is pretty much required to become overpowered to survive the game and its spawn system of everything-exists-to-kill-you. The player pretty much has to master everything in order to make the most of the crafting system, something that may grow or dwindle in importance with possible NPC allies/enemies.

But really, if I had to assume a default stance of the NPC towards the player, I would look at the default stance of Day Z players towards other players (shoot and loot, unless friend). Despite it being a game, people are rather merciless, and I would expect no less in a real crisis.

With that in mind I’d rather not see any difficulty-related decisions made until we’re sure what NPCs are going to do to that difficulty. At the very least I anticipate melee losing viability unless martial artists somehow learn how to block bullets, and archery possibly becoming/remaining the best answer to the challenge of survival.

Edit: To clarify, when I’m referring to NPCs, I’m referring specifically to NPC factions, and the player’s relationship with and their presence in the world with the player.

I disagree with this 100%.

DayZ players happily murder other players because it’s just a game and there’s no real consequences, something that’s hard to forget no matter how immersive the experience. They aren’t merciless despite it being a game, they show less mercy because it’s a game.

I don’t think NPCs should be implemented primarily as a hazard.

You ought to be able to cook chemically pure meth with high enough cooking skill.
That’d be a use for cooking beyond level 6.

A while back, a few versions ago, I made a mod where you could sort of cook down drugs into cleaner forms of themselves if you had the right skill level and chemicals. But it’s dead now. It was a cool idea, but a pain in the ass in execution.

You wound up with a bunch of recipes of varying quality cluttering up Chem crafting. But it was fun while it lasted.

The player character is the star of the show.

Balancing them, and making sure everything they have is relevant and stays relevant throughout the gameplay is vital.

The world around them should be balanced to fit the player character. Not the other way around. Not balancing the character now, to implement another system later and then balance them around that is wacky design…because now you have to go back through and make sure everything is balanced around that new system as well.

Balance player character and skills, implement NPC’s, balance NPC’s to fit the character.

If you implement NPC’s, balance the player character to handle NPC’s, you lose focus on all the other aspects of the game.

“Well we wanted NPC’s to use lots of guns, so we reworked the player’s skills so NPC’s wouldn’t slaughter them (but now all these other mobs never hit them).”


“We wanted NPC’s to use lots of guns, but they kept slaughtering the player character, so we decreased the average NPC’s firearms skill”

Um, all these suggestions seem to unfairly discount how good the skill system is already. If you have insanely high skill levels, turn skill rust back on. Turning off skill rust is the reason your skill levels are climbing too high. The biggest “problem” in this thread is that we don’t have a clear “road map” for what the devs plan for the game, so we’re filling in the gaps with conjecture.

In the “code_doc” folder of the source code, there is a file called “GAME_BALANCE.txt” that lays a lot of this out, such as:
Skill system scaling:
Minimum skill: 0 (no training)
Maximum skill: 10 (requires regular training to maintain, “professional” level)

Skill rust is an option now pretty much as an acknowledgement that it needs to be tweaked to achieve the desired affect. It doesn’t make sense to make characters drag a whole library around just so they can stay at level 3.0 so they can craft item XYZ, thus, the option of capping rust came into effect. Skill rust already occurs exponentially more at higher levels, so the “pivot point” of how hard it is to raise skills already exists.

IMHO, there are only a couple of things not implemented yet as the game matures:

[ol][li]Recipe’s haven’t been balanced out by skill level. This relates to the OP’s initial comment that higher skill levels in some skills don’t have a purpose. The enventual rebalancing of crafting requirements will balance this[/li]
[li]Capping skills at 10. I don’t know if the devs still want to do this, but from the description, this is (or was) the intent. Things like installing multiple engines break this right now, so game features need to be balanced before a hard cap is turned on. (I don’t know if 10.0 is supposed to be the cap, but I hope it is 10.99 is the cap to provide some insulation from skill rust dropping levels)[/li]
[li]Refine skill rust. This could mean making books get you to skill level X.5 so that the first tick of skill rust doesn’t drop you a whole level. It could mean leaving the cap. I don’t know, but I like the direction things are goind. The INT based skill rust is a pretty new thing.[/li][/ol]

I don’t mean to totally squash conversation, but I don’t want us to reinvent the wheel. I am hoping that the community can focus on true weaknesses in the proposed system. We all know that the current system has weaknesses, but that is because it isn’t finished yet.

The eventual plan is to bundle up skill rust and book learning into a single overall system, as outlined here/below:

I think I understand what you are saying, and from what I understand I like the sounds of it. It's basically splitting the book system off into a separate system from skill levels, but that effects how quickly you can gain skills and what recipes you have access to. Something like:

Actual Skill level - This is raised by doing “whatever”, doesn’t decrease through rust. Determines basic crafting recipes available

Rust level - This slowly increases over time, and can be worked off very quickly by performing the skill. While you have “rust” on your skill any gains to your Actual Skill levels are reduced. This does not make you forget recipes, but affects all applications of the skill (so your chance of successfully performing said recipes/tasks drops)

“Potential” level - This is bottom capped at your Actual Skill level. When you read a book this will increase your level for purposes of unlocking recipes. (But not for actual skill checks, so your % of success remains the same!). This degrades over time until it reaches your Actual Skill level, and any recipes that you unlocked with it are forgotten (unless you have increased your Actual Skill level to unlock them!). If Potential level > Actual Skill level then any gains to your Actual Skill level through practicing the skill are greatly increased.

This could also lead to a few potential traits:
Practical Learner - Reduces any gains to your “Potential” level from reading; (Potential increase to all normal gains?)
Book Learner - Gains “Potential” levels much faster (Maybe with a small increase to Actual Skill level on book reading as well?)
And as Glyph has already mentioned:
Inspired - Rarely gives a large bonus to the “Potential” level of a random skill, allowing access to upper level crafting and fast skill gain temporarily (Maybe with an sudden drop in “Potential” level after the inspiration “wears off”?)

Yeah, this plan has been around for a few months and nothing.

You know, there’s an obvious solution to that dilemma.

(please, implement this! We will love you forever! maybe possibly probably not but still)

There are two problems with it:

  1. I am very busy
  2. my coding skills are limited to JSON

And that’s why it’s not done.

You could explain it to one of the line-contributors so he/she only has to improve on the cpp code. The testing is a whole different thing, though.