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Topics - Abrojo

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So i was thinking today and the following came to mind.

1) Usually Endurance is not valued very much by Players. It has its uses mind you, but its used mostly as a tie breaker because if someone is stomping someone else, surviving 1 more hit on average wont change the outcome.

2) Warfare is very powerful, not only does it dictates ability with any weapon, tactical and strategical mastery, cant be surprised, etc. But in addition it also dictates reaction speed, sort of like the initiative in most situations (wont in psyche combat for example).

It seems to me Warfare is a bit overstacked giving ability + reaction time. Also it prevents from character variation because if you want to make a fast "whatever" you will need warfare and that kind of sucks for several builds.

So came up with the following tweak that could fix this balance a bit so that more attributes are relevant and more variation is possible (fast mentalist, fast martial artist?, etc)

Switch the speed aspect of Warfare to Endurance, rename it Fitness.

It's a simple yet effective solution. Warfare is still very strong. Also this solution doesnt involve breaking down attributes, adding more or some complicated thing. Same amount of attributes, just 1 gets renamed to better show it's slighter broader meaning.

2
Other Games / Game concept
« on: November 04, 2008, 12:32:04 PM »
Hi there

I am pitching an Artificial Intelligence (AI) workshop at University and i have been given the ok with some conditions.
I would have to implement a game that showcases good and fun AI.
The idea basically is to have an easy to program game, meaning 2D, simple controls, etc to save development time. But has to show something that gets people hooked on AI. The idea will be to do showcase the game with a small talk in a projector room and manage to get current software engineering students hooked up into AI, at least enough to pick 1 course.

The first example i thought was Pacman which has a simple UI, simple Controls and has some degree of AI on the ghosts chasing you, etc.
However the AI is way too simple so i am making a list with possible choices and to be honest i am not really conviced by any idea. It would be cool if it was an original concept but it's fine if it is an existent idea.
Which is not as hard is it sounds when you keep in mind the game doesnt need replayability beyond 2 games or much level variation, etc. It's something expected to be played 2 times at most by people.

Any input welcome!

3
The limts of Pattern.

Given the Pattern use of altering probabilities. Whats the limit for this?

For example if a box is known to be empty, could Pattern affect it so in fact, it wasnt empty?
Who would have to check the box? anyone that saw that the box wasnt empty?

Its not the same thing after all if

Case A:
me as a player find a box and alter the chance there is, lets say, money in the box.
vs.
Case B:
I hold a box in my hands which i triple checked for emptiness. Now a player comes in and changes it so there is now money in the box.

On a first approach we could say Case A is about a low probability with Case B being probability zero. Now lets assume it wouldnt make sense for money to pop in case B (aka cases with zero chance) with mere probability change (aka no conjuring, etc).
 
Then, What dictates that probability? Seems to me it's knowledge, basically the fact that someone knows that there is nothing in the box is what makes the chance zero instead of just low.
However this is an interesting exercise because we are kinda saying that the chance something can be altered through pattern depends on if someone knows. But, does it matter who? If we a couple of shadow folks checking the box is indeed empty does count, then altering chances on shadows with people looking around is very hard.

Well, just food for thought on pattern power application and wondering what other people thought on the issue.

4
Media and Inspiration / No opt-out of filtered Internet
« on: October 15, 2008, 02:10:48 PM »
No opt-out of filtered Internet
Australians will be unable to opt-out of the government's pending Internet content filtering scheme, and will instead be placed on a watered-down blacklist, experts say.

http://www.infoworld.com/news/feeds/08/10/13/No-opt-out-of-filtered-Internet.html?source=gs

Disturbing

5
Design, Development, and Gameplay / Player thinking vs Skill
« on: June 30, 2008, 07:10:38 PM »
I have talked this with lots of people and so far i have seen its a bit of a gray area hard to define properly, so looking for some input & healthy discussion here.

This issue first came to me while playing Shadowrun but of course it applies to several other systems as well.

Let's say a character has a skill "small unit tactics" or similar.

Now lets say said character's party faces a situation where they can do some prep to face some opposition. Is it viable for the player, who really doesn't know much about tactics to ask to roll the skill (or just apply it with a take10/20 whatever approach) instead of the player behind the character to come up with a strategy?

Of course we could say that the "tactics" skill just applies a bonus to the party when prep was in place or some other simplification.

However this negates the posibility of a player to play a character of something he doesnt know very well like tactics which is something that sucks a bit.

A similar example could be made with skills like negotiate or bluff. Lets say a given player is not verbally skilled and doesnt want to roleplay the part where he tries to convince someone of something.

Negotiate/Bluff is perhaps harder to find in practice since people can at least try to talk things and then you just determine success with a roll. Tactics however is something that indeed some players can suck at, and if they come up with something bad, it will be exploitable by opposition (be it NPC or PC).

Should a game include skills like this or should the player be left to his own devices?

Experiences, opinions, etc welcome.

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