The complexity of this game has surpassed non-optional permadeath

non-permadeath should be a mod. Roguelieks by tradition are permadeath. so if someone wants one, write it as a mod so we can be true to roguelike tradition.

If people want to save scum, feel that it increases their enjoyment of the game, or whatever, that’s their own business, but that isn’t the same as asking for the developers to support their save scumming by removing a traditional feature of the game.

I just don’t like the attitude of this thread. Whoever remarked that it felt like someone arriving in a first person game’s community, saying that the game had progressed beyond their game’s perspective and needed a third person option to attract more people - they had the right of it. The idea of culling something from the game that makes it more exciting and rewarding in order to appeal to a lower common denominator leaves a very sour taste in my mouth.

your initial presentation is clear cut and articulate. i commend you on your composition. just wanted to add that.

i wish that more people could experience roguelike games as well, but most people are pretty webbed up in AAA games and/or not interested in gaming at all. i dont think removing permadeath is a good idea.

for any game at any time there are a total amount of people who would theoretically enjoy it for a while. only a certain amount of this total population will ever actually hear about and play the game, and the others are shit out of luck. absolutely no one else in the world will be interested in playing even if they knew all about it (as defined). it is clear that this outlying population would not play even if permadeath was removed. those who do not hear about it are the ones that should be targeted for advertisement, and these people will likely want to play it because it is advertised as a roguelike game, and not because of the setting of the game (there are plenty of AAA and graphical indie post-apocalypse games out there) or of the complexity of the game (though not many games have such an extensive crafting/survival mechanic).

therefore, i argue that removing permadeath will not, in fact, get more people to play.
having fun is a completely different topic in and of itself. i find that this then boils down to a completely subjective question of adherence to tradition.

this territory is much more subjective and abstract, and cannot be discussed without considering ones own personal biases. i, myself, love cata as a roguelike, and though it admittedly does not adhere to the strict guidelines presented here, i would find any further deviation away from this disheartening. i also love cataclysm because i am elitist and narcissistic and i love that there are a certain amount of people who cannot deal with the challenge and/or complexity, and that i not only deal with it but relish it entirely. i like watching people squirm knowing their entire game is on the line, and i like the rush i get when in the same situation. i like how hard it is and the reason i play cataclysm is because AAA games these days seem nothing more to me than Skinner Boxes and masturbation punctuated by exceptional plot lines and settings, as well as amazing modern graphics.

but i dont want to go to the movies and jerk off. i want to play a fucking video game. no offense.

thank you for raising this subject; though im sure it has been debated furiously, this thread has been very enlightening for me.
finally i would like to reiterate these, because…

[quote=“Reservoir, post:3, topic:5464”]Ta-da you know where the good equipment is.
“Nothing interesting in the north road, better quick-load and take the south bridge!”
“Bionic installation/mutation gone wrong? Just quick-load a save and try again”[/quote]

[quote=“Dominae, post:31, topic:5464”]- It flies in the face of the genre. Cata has always supposed to have been a rogue-like. Perma-death is a staple of the genre. Rogue-likes are supposed to have that “haha, damn, well I learned something that time I died … I’ll not make that mistake again” feeling. If you remove ANY punishment from death you’ve neutered the genre pretty badly.

I liken this type of request to popping into a FPS forum and asking they make a 3rd-person, over-the-shoulder mode for the game because some people do not like playing First Person Shooters in First Person.[/quote]

[quote=“Binky, post:35, topic:5464”]Tell me again about how the wider audience that Dwarf fortress misses out on. That game makes 5-10 thousand A MONTH from donations and is in the New York Museum of modern art.
Without wanting to sound rude, your premise that perma-death is off-putting to the majority of people is flawed, and without it the game would be near pointless. More to the point, pretty much the ONLY source of re-playability (and why RLs have much more of that than other games) is the permadeath aspect (no multiplayer, no story/alternate endings) - without it, you’d be able to see and do everything in a couple of hours after which the game would be pretty pointless.

However, increasing early game fun and stamping out unfair deaths (‘you fall down the stairs and die’ type unfairness) are noble goals and ones we should encourage, as well as cutting down on the time consuming tasks. One idea on the boards recently has been to have constructing multiple tile buildings (like a wall) much easier through designation. This kind of thing gets rid of the admittedly.[/quote]

and finally

You don’t need to be elitist and narcissistic to support permanent death. It wasn’t very long ago that dying in a game meant restarting, period. This is something that should be more common, but game design has changed, and nowadays it’s almost impossible to feel any sense of risk in most games, as the slightest failure can be trivially rolled back instead of played out and dealt with. It’s unfortunate, because missing a step and recovering from it is a lot more satisfying than using a magical time machine to be completely perfect and never make any mistakes to begin with.

youre right… i was stating that i am, thats one of the reasons i enjoy it, and that the entire topic is completely subjective.
i was just saying you really have to consider your own personal biases when discussing what is or isnt fun. there is no objective answer.

youre also right that game design has changed. they are becoming interactive movies to make you feel good and spend more money.
which sucks for the good ones. but the same thing happened to movies… then they saw a cultural revolution as well.

and i guess i wanted to add that roguelikes inherently are much more immersive than other games because you unconsciously observe and recognize patterns and subsequently construct environments in your head when faced with the absence of an actual image or object space. its the same thing that happens when you read a book. in this regard, i feel that removing death (because you simply would never die) really breaks the fourth wall and kills the mood for me.

I was playing the last Killzone, and i feel like this. Even if the game is hard sometimes, is just try and try until you win, almost always.

Almost off topic… almost.

The way I see things (personally, me, opinion, I don’t think it is fact), Perma-death belongs in a game where you can earn a highscore. You set out to do the best you can, better than the last, and kind of triumph in the worst of conditions, and whilst the game does kinda support that, with a list of things you have killed before you ended up on something else’s list, but, I don’t think it’s the same.
I think, in this game, it’s simply too long to bother doing that, but yes, it is what the focus kinda-sorta is, doing better than the last time.

maybe, just maybe, a life system, where you respawn where you last slept, we already have a save before you sleep option, why not an autosave once you wake up thing?

I probably wouldn’t use it, but I believe that it would help bring people into the game, not that we really need it, but it would be really nice.I get that it’s a roguelike, and that’s a status for players to bear with honour, but honestly, this game has so much more than that that you are almost restricting it but not letting it be anything but a roguelike.
I think we are saying it is time to choose, is this an arcade style, preferably fast, high score game, unforgiving roguelike, long drawn out with permadeath, or some sort of adventure game with respawns or return to last save. I’m going for the second with the third with some sort of option for the second, though I would only really end up using the third personally.

We already have a design doc. Honestly, a good post-apocalyptic survival game that actually is a survival game, is long overdue to appear. Casual roguelikes are a dime a dozen nowadays. Just like Don’t Starve, Cataclysm should remain a true survival game. That means no optional permadeath. It is mentioned in the design doc that actually enforcing this is not planned - but savescumming will not be encouraged. A minimal amount of support for it will happen - the “graveyard” folder - but nothing beyond that. I think that’s as good an option as the people who want optional permadeath should be able to get here.

So you want us to implement something which you wouldn’t even use!?

The problem is that the game would break down instantly if you could just save and respawn - there’s just not enough to keep people playing without the real danger an RL gives you. There’s no multi-player, no arcade like highscore and no alternate endings or higher difficulty modes. We’d basically have to re-do the game from the ground up to make it still a great game with respawning as death would be meaningless.

You’re also making a false dichotomy with your ’ choose arcade or adventure game’ statement - Nethack and DCSS can take up to 20 hours to play (one my DCSS run throughs took nearly THIRTY HOURS) - that’s way longer than most adventure games, and part of that is the careful consideration permadeth requires.

Savescumming though is exactly the optional method you are looking for. As has been pointed out, it’s very easy to do compared to other games, and you (and anyone else) is free to do that and I doubt very much that anyone will be implementing further barriers or locks towards that.

[quote=“turtleagldragon, post:47, topic:5464”]Almost off topic… almost.

The way I see things (personally, me, opinion, I don’t think it is fact), Perma-death belongs in a game where you can earn a highscore. You set out to do the best you can, better than the last, and kind of triumph in the worst of conditions, and whilst the game does kinda support that, with a list of things you have killed before you ended up on something else’s list, but, I don’t think it’s the same.
I think, in this game, it’s simply too long to bother doing that, but yes, it is what the focus kinda-sorta is, doing better than the last time.[/quote]

interesting, but i think that a game must have an end goal to have a save system. because there is no end goal, and the game does not end until you die, removing death (and you will be completely removing it because no one would ever die) would break the game and make it extremely boring and easy. take minecraft for example, or GTA. if you could pause the game and quicksave at any time, would the game be fun at all? my argument is no. hence The Elder Scrolls.

i think this is a very important discussion to have and has proven very enlightening and thought provoking for me.

[quote=“turtleagldragon, post:47, topic:5464”]Almost off topic… almost.

The way I see things (personally, me, opinion, I don’t think it is fact), Perma-death belongs in a game where you can earn a highscore. You set out to do the best you can, better than the last, and kind of triumph in the worst of conditions, and whilst the game does kinda support that, with a list of things you have killed before you ended up on something else’s list, but, I don’t think it’s the same.
I think, in this game, it’s simply too long to bother doing that, but yes, it is what the focus kinda-sorta is, doing better than the last time.[/quote]

Continuing on almost off-topic, a scoring system would actually be very dandy. Especially if the score is a factor of the difficulty setting. As a comparison feature especially, to your own previous games and that of others. We could even have a community high scores table. It will also encourage players to set up more difficult games and not just always go for the easiest setup, I’m not generalizing here. I know some of us set the bar higher already, but not everyone does. A scoring system where difficulty level is a multiplier of the score will inspire more challenging games to be played. The easiest setup would be multiplied by zero, so a score of zero would always be the result of the easiest game possible. So setting more difficult will add to the multiplier.

Score should maybe be determined by kills, duration, skill levels, bionics. I don’t really know enough yet to say what all should contribute or what the various setting should add to the multiplier, but there certainly is some experienced player that can.

A score system would be fine, although being such a sandbox game I think defining a quantitative standard would be difficult - in other words, how do we define success when there are no goals? Sure, it could be on monsters killed (which it already shows you) but some people might think that building the biggest structure would be the most important thing or whatever.

I’d prefer to have a set of achievements which people could gain, and possibly tie it in to their forum profiles or just a general generated web page. This is a lot of work though.

So give score for building also or whatever people think they should get scored on. I didn’t read much on the game, trying to play unspoiled.
So, I didn’t know there wouldn’t be an end goal when the game is completely developed. Maybe the scoring should just end after a certain amount of seasons or scoring should reduce over time. As I said, I’m pretty much unspoiled, so really don’t know what happens the longer your character stays alive. It sounds like you are saying one can continue indefinitely.

[quote=“Stingray, post:51, topic:5464”][quote=“turtleagldragon, post:47, topic:5464”]Almost off topic… almost.

The way I see things (personally, me, opinion, I don’t think it is fact), Perma-death belongs in a game where you can earn a highscore. You set out to do the best you can, better than the last, and kind of triumph in the worst of conditions, and whilst the game does kinda support that, with a list of things you have killed before you ended up on something else’s list, but, I don’t think it’s the same.
I think, in this game, it’s simply too long to bother doing that, but yes, it is what the focus kinda-sorta is, doing better than the last time.[/quote]

Continuing on almost off-topic, a scoring system would actually be very dandy. Especially if the score is a factor of the difficulty setting. As a comparison feature especially, to your own previous games and that of others. We could even have a community high scores table. It will also encourage players to set up more difficult games and not just always go for the easiest setup, I’m not generalizing here. I know some of us set the bar higher already, but not everyone does. A scoring system where difficulty level is a multiplier of the score will inspire more challenging games to be played. The easiest setup would be multiplied by zero, so a score of zero would always be the result of the easiest game possible. So setting more difficult will add to the multiplier.

Score should maybe be determined by kills, duration, skill levels, bionics. I don’t really know enough yet to say what all should contribute or what the various setting should add to the multiplier, but there certainly is some experienced player that can.[/quote]

AHEM.

From that design doc everyone likes to cite:

A formal score mechanic with bonuses and multipliers and such creates that competition. The only player or dev who has the experience to say what you should aim to accomplish in your game of DDA is you. We might offer advice or suggestions if asked, but that’s it.

Achievements seem to hit the same problem: a defined goal that’s officially sanctioned, so you either Did It, or Haven’t Done It. Standards like that encourage stratification: “you haven’t done X thing in-game, but I have, so you’re lesser than I am.” Further, they would require standardized settings to ensure a “fair playing field”, etc. That would either remove DDA’s adaptability to different players, or make that adaptability contingent on being a Non-Default Player, causing the same stratification problem.

There’s no Single True Way to play DDA. And that’s why I like it.

I’m personally not bothered about scoring, however I like the idea of achievements and I very much doubt people would care sufficiently enough to become elitist about it or worry about it not being completely level playing field (although a check could be done to see if they were using ‘default’ settings before the start).

My thought really is that acheivements could almost be used as a way to push people to certain goals without having fixed ones. Things like ‘break into a lab’ or ‘destroy a fungal colony’ would push people towards new stuff. I hear a lot of people complain with DF about ‘not knowing what to do’ as they struggle to set their own goals (not in a bad way, but just that some people are used to being told what to do with games) so it might appeal to some people.

[quote=“KA101, post:54, topic:5464”]From that design doc everyone likes to cite:

A formal score mechanic with bonuses and multipliers and such creates that competition. The only player or dev who has the experience to say what you should aim to accomplish in your game of DDA is you. We might offer advice or suggestions if asked, but that’s it.

Achievements seem to hit the same problem: a defined goal that’s officially sanctioned, so you either Did It, or Haven’t Done It. Standards like that encourage stratification: “you haven’t done X thing in-game, but I have, so you’re lesser than I am.” Further, they would require standardized settings to ensure a “fair playing field”, etc. That would either remove DDA’s adaptability to different players, or make that adaptability contingent on being a Non-Default Player, causing the same stratification problem.

There’s no Single True Way to play DDA. And that’s why I like it.[/quote]

I think thats a very point cynical view towards the concept of game achievements, well surely theres are people who take those way to seriously, but when meet those the response is more along the lines of: poor guy bragging about his score than you actually feeling bad because you suck. Never to mention that you can ignore them if you dont like them.

A well thought of achievement doesn’t actually require a fair playing field either, nor does it require the game to be designed to meet specific criteria. For example, achievements that involve foes being killed carry all their conditions on their definitions without the need the need to change the main game at all:

-Nailed’it: Kill 100 zombies with a nailbat.
-Vorpal Blade: Kill a Jabberwock with a sword of any kind.

Then we have achievements in which the ways to achieve them are so broad that no game would ever try to balance ever:

-Deep beneath the earth: Reach a mine finale.
-Indy ploy: Reach the bottom of a temple.
-No Kevins: Reach the core of an ice lab.
-Payday: Have a cash card with more than $8,000.
-8D: reach the 8D morale smiley.

And them we can have achievements for overly specific situations:

-Casimir effect: Install the quantum teleportation bionic
-Creepy Crawlies: Meet a sludge crawler
-FIREEE FIIIIRE: have more than 80 map squares on lighted on fire at a given time.

Really I think that achievements could be a very fun thing to have in game rather than a detractor for most people, I for one know that they would make me play the game for longer timespans. And its not like the game didn’t had small goals already considering what you need to do in order to get an artifact sword or a desert eagle.

there already is a scoring system… it is called a calendar

oh yea theres another one for you, its called a smile

[quote=“Binky, post:55, topic:5464”]I’m personally not bothered about scoring, however I like the idea of achievements and I very much doubt people would care sufficiently enough to become elitist about it or worry about it not being completely level playing field (although a check could be done to see if they were using ‘default’ settings before the start).

My thought really is that acheivements could almost be used as a way to push people to certain goals without having fixed ones. Things like ‘break into a lab’ or ‘destroy a fungal colony’ would push people towards new stuff. I hear a lot of people complain with DF about ‘not knowing what to do’ as they struggle to set their own goals (not in a bad way, but just that some people are used to being told what to do with games) so it might appeal to some people.[/quote]

i am in favor of achievements eventually, so long as they serve to direct new players explore and nothing more. however, i will just leave this here.

http://kotaku.com/achievements-have-ruined-how-i-play-games-510597650

Guess I’ll just create my own scoring/achievements system then in the meantime. :wink:

Not sure about an achievement system, but when I said scoring system, I was saying that we could make this more arcady since most perma-death games apart from roguelikes are, well arcade games. I guess my intention doesn’t mean much, but I’ll just say that if we were going to have a scoreboard, which I am all for, then I imagine that either there would be several different ones, and you could choose which to post your score on and which to not post it on, but you would ultimately have to shoot for one. There would be a Highest amount of enemies killed, with different points awarded to different enemies, longest time survived, pretty basic, but it might be possible to make a 100% self sufficient tile the player could stand on and live forever, not sure if there is though, and maybe the most highly valued map tile you uncovered, or rigged up, might not work since you could just use a randomly generated one, and the things inside could give you a pretty high score, but the premise is that you construct a base within one tile, and when you die you can select it and the worth and number of different things is calculated and gives you a score maybe?

Anyway, when I said that you could have the game centred around a score board, I meant that we could make it fast paced, maybe loads of weaker zombies and no free katanas and chainsaws and mininukes, just homemade weapons and molotov cocktails, and so many zombies that you simply can’t stop for long, and it would be just as much of a change-of-perspection as making it something with a save button granting inbuilt save-scumming like what this thread is trying to suggest. It would bring people in, give a solution to the problem (not being able to see the whole cataclysmic world for what it is) and satisfy everyone with a new style of play.

But looking back at these two options now, I can honestly say that I would not care if either were implemented, and I like the game just as it is, though if the arcade was tweaked just right, or the save-scumming had a purpose (like if the positioning of the zombies and loot was so harsh that it was almost like a puzzle, but with a reset button right off the bat) than yeah. It would be sooo worth it.