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g33k

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  1. Rather the opposite: The computer (game-play AI) won't be able to parse out what the player wants to do. The possible ways for magi to "solve" a problem are so many, and the methods are so diverse, that I envision it being VERY tough for the game-play engine to grasp many -- in fact, the vast majority -- of the entirely-viable solutions; in particular, even moderately-specialized magi tend to be able to finesse their Arts so as to find entirely-reasonable applications, solve problems in entirely-unforseen ways. Let's take your "negotiate with a sinister merchant" instance, for example. As you note, popping him with his own very personal bonfire probably isn't a good solution. (no matter HOW tempting, or HOW deserving he seems). But there are 14 other Arts than Ignem, 49 TechForm combo's besides Creo Ignem. The Corpus mage might PeCo him into thinking he's been poisoned -- and the PC is his only hope of getting an antidote; the Herbam mage might ACTUALLY poison him; the Intellego specialist may have arrived with all the leverage needed to soothe the merchant's sinister; and the Mentem mage may just ReMe "convince" the guy to cooperate; etc etc etc... Players usually pick the character-concept and magical specializations that they want to play... but how can one game-engine with pre-coded "solutions" offer even a tiny fraction of the viable solution-sets available to spont-equiped magi? It's a dramatically-worse case of my usual problem with CRPG's. Relying on the pre-coded solutions -- as CRPG's must, by their very nature -- has always rubbed me the wrong way: it may be good for situations involving traps/puzzles/etc (such devices have a fixed method, by their nature), but NPC-driven obstacles should be more complex, the possible solutions likewise; and given the robust nature of ArM's spont-magic & ideosyncratic nature of magi & their specializations, I suspect that the pre-coded NPC's -- and the pre-coded solutions to the problems they present -- may be even more-frustrating than usual, making a mockery of the very joy that is spont magic. - Steve, the g33k (who really wishes he wasn't coming across so negatively... )
  2. Hmm. I only sort-of understand some of this response; most particularly (see below) the point I was most-confused about. Not including the supplements (except via Stretch): OK, I guess that makes sense. Though there's a lot of fluff you wouldn't have to code, most of the programming would just be a few extra V/F's & skills & therefore easily adapted from existing principles if the core-book material is handled; still, it *IS* extra work, so it makes sense that it'd take extra funding. Covenant-members can go on "adventures" without your primary PC, but you (the player) still play the adventure, right? They become "temporary" PC's as it were (hey! "troupe" style play! or maybe not so much so... ) -- at least, assuming I'm understanding you correctly...? (as an aside: if the non-PC members of your Covenant are NOT player-designed, how ARE they made? Random-generation via the same engine that the PC is built with? A pool of pre-gen's? Or...? ) Finally -- and most confusingly, as mentioned above -- regarding the strategic/adventuring interface: this has, for me, long been the sticking-point of all computer "RPG" games. Getting a computer/AI to understand my proposed approach to any given in-game problem -- or rather, my figuring out which one (or few) of the very MANY possible and/or likely approaches) have been encoded in the game as "solutions" -- other than "hit it with the sword/fireball/AK47/etc" and "use the 'solve this problem MacGuffin' you earned last level" solutions -- has rendered most CRPG's into "CRAP-RPG's" for me... The experience usually leaves me feeling like the dev-team has set back the Turing Test by a decade or more. When you add in the possible campaign/Saga/strategic consequences of (creatively-solved) adventure/story sections... well... the likelihood of a "good" (i.e., "accurate") strategic-level representation of the consequences of creative "adventuring" play just looks awfully unlikely. Given that this is Ars Magica (with both the Order and the mundane society having "social" repercussions -- for good or ill -- of things the magi might do, and with Spont magic running loose in the game), having the Strategic AI understand the MANY ways that the PC's might legitimately alter the existing setting, is just... erm... boggling. As I understand the way Metacreator works, you'd just need a custom datasheet (I think that's their term) of the core-rulebook-without-supplements; assuming you are implementing the whole of the character-generation parts of the core rulebook, that should give exact 1:1 correspondence. Your programmers talking to their programmer(s?) might reveal that this is easier than you think (or harder than *I* think... ) . - Steve, the g33k
  3. Awesome! You li'l pullets noir... you just rock, yes you do! ArM has been my favorite game since long before Atlas got it, and their 5e is the best edition yet. :wub: Hmmm... I realize it's as-yet-unfunded and likely has gotten very-little dev-work done, but I'm hoping you can answer some questions around this point... If you create a mage as "your PC" but you also "play the entire Covenant," how is game-play planned to work? That is, how will Covenant-level seasonal/annual/multi-year play "strategic" level play interface with PC-level storytelling / RPG-adventuring play, and vice versa? Also, how much control do you have over character-creation of the other covenant-members? And how much of the supplementary material (Houses of Hermes books, "The Mysteries," etc) will be available for PC char-gen & play? Also, can you clarify a point for me: is this planned as a set-timescale (100-year) game? It seemed so, from the text & video... Finally: have you considered or investigated the possibility of integrating your product with the Metacreator Ars Magica toolkit? Congratulations, kudos, best wishes, and ALL that sort of sentiment! - Steve, the g33k
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