Hawkey

~ Suggestions & Improvement ~

4,320 posts in this topic

Shin;

 

We have this suggestion already, and if things go well, you will see this in Patch 3.

 

Great!

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Before the Midterm Exams, I made sure that my character had studied each subject up to 10. All of my scores were a multiple of 10, equal to study level times the subject's parent skill level. I'd not done any extra credit or research, though all of my relationships with the Professors were +1 to +4, though that didn't appear to affect the grade.

 

While this apparently very simple form of scoring the Exams is doubtless 'fair', and it does 'make sense', it's also extremely 'mechanical' and 'inhuman'. I'd love to see some small variation, a few points up or down based on luck, or even directly and exactly a true random factor giving some small variance.

 

I've gone to school knowing I've got my subject down cold, and I -will- have a 100% on the upcoming test. I've also known I didn't have my work done, and I was surely going to fail. . . . But I've never gone to class certain, absolutely certain, that I would walk away with an 80%, no better, no worse, and being able to 'see' the mechanics at work here for the midterm grades is rather jarring for how my fantasy immersion works.

 

I think that the exam system as it stands is probably the biggest disappointment. The number it gives you is basically meaningless and really provides no satisfaction. I mean, in my run, my student was the top scorer on the Athletics final with something like 110. There was no real reward or satisfaction since that was just the Study x my Skill (11, thanks to passives). What I think would really improve the game - or the next, more likely, is if the exams were replaced with adventures tailored to the class's skills. That way you could really compete with fellow students for the top spot through progressively tougher skill checks with your success or failure on each check influencing the final score. Maybe a triathalon or something for Athletics, an herb gathering or growing competition for botany (this could be a year long project or something), some sort of Wushu calligraphy battle, something exciting! In a wizardly magical setting, a generic formula is, to be frank, a disappointment. That really kills the sense of accomplishment building through the year. You go from zero to some sort of athletic idiot-savant but what's the point? You just get a number.

 

Also, it would be great if you listed which final was going to be taken instead of the generic "Exam" slot. It's pointless to consider stat-boost abilities and spells when you can't be sure of the timing.

 

On a different note, it might be a good move to color-code adventures when you're picking them based on how hard a character with your skills would find them. At the end I had about as well-rounded a character as you could imagine (4 or 5 10s, a bunch of 5+s, and at least a few points in most other sub-skills - thanks activity location I got from Brew!) and there were still adventures that I would still have no applicable skills for. It doesn't need to be specific about what skills you need, but there is nothing worse than the feeling you've wasted a full day of adventures because of bad luck choosing which to take.

 

Finally, this is a mechanical thing, but I would like to see the ability to save a default location for activities that require a location. Once I had access and a pass to The Champion's Room, there was no reason not to use it. It was just too much of a hassle to select it from the incredibly huge and opaque list of locations (with no tooltip showing the location's key stats) every time and phase I wanted to use it.

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Tricky;

 

Thanks for the suggestion!

 

We plan to do something different with Exams in Year 2 (Wu Shu Calligraphy battle would be hilarious!), but I do not think we will able to make a dramatic change for Year 1. We can't announce anything about that quite yet, but this year's scores will heavily impact the options available to you. :)

 

For the suggestions about 'Exam' on the Calendar and the ability to save Default Preparation Locations, those are actually previous suggestions we are going to try to bring into Year 1.

 

I really like the suggestion about Adventures being color-coded before you go- maybe the color is the color of the easiest path? That wouldn't necessarily tell you what you needed before embarking on it, but it might help you make a more informed choice.

 

Thanks again!

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I really like the suggestion about Adventures being color-coded before you go- maybe the color is the color of the easiest path? That wouldn't necessarily tell you what you needed before embarking on it, but it might help you make a more informed choice.

 

Yeah, that's what I was thinking. It's just frustrating to take an adventure and see a wall of red at the option select box.

 

Another thing that came to mind - but may have been mentioned prior - is to show your chance of success with spells when you're adding Phemes. I didn't really mess around with phemes much because I wasn't sure how likely I was to be casting the spell in the first place. Percentage chance of success after pheme modifiers would be ideal for me, but you could always do the color-code thing for that too if you don't want to be too specific.

 

And maybe you could show which classes have what dominant attribute in character creation?

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Tricky;

 

The Phemes suggestion has also been mentioned, and we plan to deal with that in steps. The first step, coming in Patch 3, is to allow you to read the Phemes from the selection menu. Following that, we plan to try to make all Actions, Abilities and Spells color-coded, with the latter dynamically changing as you add Phemes.

 

As to the dominant Attribute suggestion, you mean for the relevant Class Skill? I am sure we can do that.

 

Thanks!

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Yeah, the dominant ability for the relevant Class Skill. I probably wouldn't have picked Astrology as a class on my character if I had known it was luck based, since she was Strength and Fitness centric.

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I dont know if it is already suggested, but it would be great if we can see the base attribute a skill is based on in the selection of the academy and the study skills.

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Schwarzbart;

 

Can you clarify what you mean by Academy and Study Skills?

 

Studying a Skill is not based on any Attribute- it is just a measure of the work you put in. I'm not yet sure what you mean about Academy Skills, though.

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What I was Talking about is the Text to the Class Selection (in the Character Cration) there sould be what Attribute the Skill is Based.

This would especial help People who complet new to the game andf have RPG expiriences but also it would help me so I dont have to look in old save Files/ my own list what Attribute each Class Skill is based.

(Sorry that my first Post was confusing but I didnt whant to go to char creation just for writing the suggestion but now I haved to ^^)

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Can you increase the chance of a random adventure for the "Serendipity" ability?

As it is now I think its even worse then go on a planed adventure with the "Adventure" action.

First of all you cant prepare for the upcomming adventure because you dont know when or if at all one hapen.

Second a chance of 33% per day is only around 70% chance to have a adventure in this time from the ability. (I know you have a small chance to get 2 or even 3 but you gain random adventures even without this and I dont think it add a second to a day)

Third you cant chose what adventure hapens.

So I think the chance sould be 50% per day, 75% per day for 2 days or increase the number of days with 33% to a full week.

Even with this I am still not sure If I would use it instead of adventure maybe the 33% for a full week would be enough for me to use it.

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I'd also like to suggest the ability to DELETE saved games. I have a bunch of old games "clogging" up my list :)

 

 

This you can do, if you can just find the (magically) hidden saves ;)

 

To quote our good Legate -

 

You can find your save game in (depending on your OS):

 

Your Profile -> MyApps -> Local or Roaming -> Academagia

 

Hope that helps!

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Or you simply use the Big X Buton next to the File Name in Load or Save to Delet it.

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Schwarz;

 

Ah, so you would like a 100% chance of having a Random Event upon the use of Serendipity?

 

Alright, I think we can accommodate you. ;)

 

And yes, Impet-

 

Please use the 'x' next to the save game name to delete conveniently from the game.

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After I finished my First game somehow I was a bit disapointed because there was no seperate Screen where some of the more interesting Facts of last year was displayed. (i.E my Character finished the Well Questline for Katja Qinnect what is a rater intersting point for the History or that he used to be most of his free time in libarys to study there)

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Schwarzbart;

 

I understand the feedback- it's nice to have a review screen for the end of the year. I think you will like what you see at the beginning of Year 2. :)

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This you can do, if you can just find the (magically) hidden saves :)

 

To quote our good Legate -

 

You can find your save game in (depending on your OS):

 

Your Profile -> MyApps -> Local or Roaming -> Academagia

 

Hope that helps!

 

I can't seem to find this on my computer, which is running vista.

Help?

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I can't seem to find this on my computer, which is running vista.

Help?

 

You can only find it if you set system hidden folders to viewable, this setting is usually under 'tools' 'folder options' under the 'view' tab.

 

Or you might be able to find them using a search for the names you gave them in the game, if search searches hidden folders.

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I've played around with the game for 10 to 15 hours or so, and have a few comments and suggestions. First off, though, it's always fun to be involved with the early progress and development of an incredibly detailed, comprehensive game like this, and I feel lucky to have found this game through a random ad on Impulse. Hopefully some of my comments can be useful, and through the writing submission process, I may be able to address some of these myself!

 

First off, I agree with several of the previous posters who have called for Friends and Classes to have more content associated with them.

 

For friends, as previously said, more actions and abilities related to friends would be nice. But just as important, I think, is that friend-related adventures, etc. should have some sort of time based immediacy. You can't put off your friend's crisis until next week! For example, Emilia Piccoti's adventure regarding her perfume. That's really the sort of thing that should just hit you some random afternoon, and you should be forced to pursue it over the next couple of days or lose her as a friend. Auto-schedule it onto the calender? Set and use flags that trigger after the first event fires, setting up a "Break up with Friend" event if an effort to continue the adventure isn't made within a certain period of time?

 

Also, an idea would be a "Spend time with x" ability. Based on their character blurb, each friend comes with an action representing the two of you hanging out and doing something your friend likes doing. So with Emilia, it could be Gossiping with a random student, and improving the relationship between all three parties by 1. That would be slightly better than normal gossiping, and it would be much more specific. Another student could have the "Study at the library with X," or "Wander the Forest with X." This would make friends more important by giving you access to activities and whatnot that you might normally partake, and to skill training that you would otherwise ignore.

 

A few more abilities along the lines of "Set an Example" could work as the converse of this - that is, your friend hangs out with you, doing stuff you're good at, and both of you improve as a result.

 

If one of your friends ends up in the infirmary, there should be some sort of even that triggers as well. That's important enough that it shouldn't go unnoticed.

 

There is also something at the bottom of the character's display about gift preferences. I was playing a poor character, and never bought anything, so this part of the game totally escaped me. Maybe I shouldn't be allowed to ignore it so thoroughly? Or rather, maybe gifting would be a way of strengthening friendships.

 

The two of these could then tie into a "friendship meter." Each time a positive action with a friend is taken, an extra level is added to a hidden code in the database. Should the level fall below a certain point (as a result of not hanging out with your friend for too long, being friendly with people they don't like, refusing to help them out in their crises or failing to help them, stealing their boyfriend/girlfriends, etc.), you'd lose the friend. This meter would only really decline through deliberate malice, failure, or neglect, and I think would be comprehensible. Maybe it could be represented by a phrase under their name in the Clique menu - "Best Friend," "Close Friend," "Friend" "Drifting Apart", etc.

 

Enemies and rivals could definitely use some work, though as I never really developed any I can't say how. Just making sure that, even if you're not a target of constant bullying, you will always during the year develop a few serious rivals, for good or bad reasons, would go a long ways. I suppose that you could have two categories - academic rivals, drawn from your classes, whom you MUST out-do, and on the other hand, social rivals, who you just don't like for whatever reason. These could be randomly chosen, but I think it would be better if the various characters in the game were assigned a few attributes that they particularly dislike, or people that they particularly dislike. For example, X really dislikes people with intelligence above 2, and so you're more likely to become his/her particular social rival. Colleges could play a role in that as well, I guess. I dunno, I don't have as good an idea of the mechanics for this, but some sort of database-driven probability matrix that will assign a rival or two or three to you during the term. Once the rivals are set, there could be a series of challenges and adventures tied to your rival, and at the very least you could be the target of bullying/sabotage/demeaning/rumors/nasty spells, etc. from your rival.

 

As for classes, I totally endorse the prior suggestions regarding test scheduling and students in the class. Perhaps even have a special title for "top of the class," some combination of study, ability, and teacher relationship. It really seems like there ought to be a "Classes" window, in which all of one's classes are shown, with teachers and students, and Exam scores, if there are any.

 

An earlier poster had suggested that the tests be re-done in favor of an adventure system. I think this is an excellent idea, though I understand that it's probably not possible at this point to entirely replace the tests. However, could the test scoring be modified so as to take into account the results of such adventures? For example, particular outcomes in the adventure would be worth X points on the final test? If you had a rival in each class, this could be worked into the adventure as well. Further, these adventures need not be confined to the test itself - a series of class-related adventures during the course of the term could provide a variety of merit bonuses, glory, skill bonuses, and teacher approval ratings, all the while making the class part of the game far more immersive.

 

These could be choosable adventures, but given that they are related to classes, I'd suggest they be unavoidably triggered, perhaps as one-off adventures, or perhaps as a series of events across several days.

 

Another angle would be based on the teachers. Right now, they are really shadowy presences, who you can entirely avoid if desired. They ought to be much more active presences in your characters' life. Event sequences based on particular teachers, triggered if you are in their classes or their house, would make this happen. Perhaps teachers could become your rivals, harming your performance in their class and forcing you to work extra hard to pass, ala Snape.

 

Finally, many of the random events refer to classes that my character does not take - particularly Incantation and Negation. My character had a schedule of Astrology, Geometry, Grammar, Rhetoric, Dialectic, and Glamour - almost none of which provided much in the way of adventure hooks, save Astrology. It seems odd to have events trigger that deal with classes one doesn't have. An adventure or two for each subject would be interesting - for Dialectic, maybe exploring the Chandruligar (excuse my spelling) path more fully, with a challenge at each step, or for Rhetoric, some sort of debating society or contest. Geometry brings to mind all sorts of horrible Lovecraftian adventure opportunities involving the many angled ones living at the bottom of the Mandelbrot set, but I'm not sure how well that would really fit with the setting - though I did note with approval the one Geometric attack spell that messed with the opponent's distribution in space.

 

On a related note, given that schedule, I had TONS and TONS of phemes, but almost no way to use any of them. The lore would often reference spells and whatnot that used the phemes I was studying, for example economy spells, law spells, and whatnot, but those don't seem to have been coded in.

 

I realize that I've said a lot, and much of what I've said would require a LOT of work to properly implement, even just at the content writing level. However, when I think back to my prior experience modding a kitchen-sink game, Europa Universalis III, I can't help but think that with dedicated support from the developers combined and the active involvement of the community at the modding and content creation level, much of what has been suggested on these boards can be made possible.

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Emperor Norton;

 

First of all: thank you for suggestions and comments. There are some great ideas here, and it's always good to see a fellow Paradoxian. :)

 

It's interesting you should mention the time-based Friendship Adventures. Originally, many were designed as such, but the overwhelming feedback was that our testers preferred more control, to less, in the timing of these. There are some friend-related Random Events (and more to come in the DLC, specific to each Character), but the real balance will be struck in Year 2. We *may* do some timed Adventures there.

 

I really like the idea about Student-specific Actions that are overtly time spent. Every Student has a Clique Ability, but it's not quite the same thing.

 

I also love the idea about the Infirmary. That needs some exploration, definitely.

 

Giving Gifts is a quick way to improve Relationships, in answer to your question.

 

In regards to Relationship maintenance, this was another area where our testers came down firmly on the negative. Originally, Relationship did decay, but we pulled it from the design relatively early. We are considering a few ways to add something like this into Year 2, but we're not sure yet what the implementation will be.

 

Personally, I have never been fond of designs which force Rivals, but we'll see when we revisit this section of the design. Academic Rivals (as well as a few other classifications) are definitely in for Year 2, though. :blush:

 

Instructors can become difficult to deal with, especially if they do not like you- but it may be worthwhile to expand this out to a complete system. Some Instructor related Adventures are scheduled for the DLC, by the way.

 

Phemes can be added to Spells to provide additional Effects. Some Spells which are referenced in the Lores are not in the game, but are there to hint at future possibilities, or to provide more insight into the world.

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It's interesting you should mention the time-based Friendship Adventures. Originally, many were designed as such, but the overwhelming feedback was that our testers preferred more control, to less, in the timing of these. There are some friend-related Random Events (and more to come in the DLC, specific to each Character), but the real balance will be struck in Year 2. We *may* do some timed Adventures there.

 

In regards to Relationship maintenance, this was another area where our testers came down firmly on the negative. Originally, Relationship did decay, but we pulled it from the design relatively early. We are considering a few ways to add something like this into Year 2, but we're not sure yet what the implementation will be.

 

The eternal game-design challenge, balancing challenge and annoyance. I definitely understand how automatic decay would be annoying - there have been several games where the entire experience bogged down at some point because fighting auto-decay in various levels became time consuming. On the other hand, presenting players with hard choices - do this, or lose that - can enhance game experiences if done properly. So long as the choices are clearly understood, the alternatives are balanced, and some level of success is usually possible. I can definitely see the donwside to time-related adventures, if the adventure requires skills that the players simply does not have and cannot build up in the allotted time. One way to deal with this would be to have a sort of graduated success range. I don't know how possible it is to have branching paths within an adventure given the engine you are using, so I'm not going to suggest solutions that would require such. However, you could have three possibilties for such an adventure - 1 - You ignore the call for help, and suffer a relationship hit. 2 - You make an effort to help, but fail - this avoids the relationship hit, but provides nothing positive. 3 - You succeed, boost your relationship, and get a bonus. This way, the player is only penalized if they choose to not even bother to help their friend, but is not blamed if the task is simply beyond their means. However, if the player really works hard to help their friend, say skipping classes for a few days to build up the necessary skills before the timer runs out, then they will be amply rewarded.

 

 

I really like the idea about Student-specific Actions that are overtly time spent. Every Student has a Clique Ability, but it's not quite the same thing.

 

The community might be able to help with this if posted on a separate thread - a list of all characters, and suggestions for what activity one might do with them, and what benefits it might provide.

 

Giving Gifts is a quick way to improve Relationships, in answer to your question.

 

Is there some special skill needed before this becomes possible? I never even ran into the mechanic, or saw it as an option. It does not seem like giving gifts should be an obscure ability that is only learned after great study and difficulty. :-)

 

Thanks for the response!

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Emperor Norton;

 

I just checked Gift, and I found that it's not linked. Curious- I need to see if that was intended for some reason.

 

Thanks!

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