Design post on the blog!

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Design post on the blog!

Postby Lujo on Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:16 pm

Well, nice to see you guys explain your reasoning. It's also sad to see you completely missing the point. The issue is TIME, not SPACE, as in "time in real life" as opposed to "storage capacity of a videogame reward repository", but I'm done debating that whole thing. Anyway, hope to see/hear more on the new direction in the coming weeks, been looking forward to some of what I suspect it's about for a while.
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby gjaustin on Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:24 pm

Yeah. The original aspect of losing the lockered item on death was a TERRIBLE mechanic for EVERYONE. Just like having to farm for gold after every run in the Alpha was a terrible mechanic. The current locker implementation is better, but not perfect.

They're absolutely right when discussing the blind spots people get towards difficulty, even though that has absolutely nothing to do with the discussion of locker space.
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby Lujo on Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:38 pm

In an indirect way it does, but not in the way presented. Well, I've played the game while being dissapointed with them on issues before, and they've tolerated my failings as well. And yeah, slippery slopes and all that, but they never mentioned the only really legit one during that whole debate, and well, there's enough stuff they do very well, and they've made me a happy gamer enough times that I can really shrug at this... Even though sometimes, very rarely, I whish I DID have the power to influence them all those people seem to think I do :lol:
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby xspeedballx on Wed Feb 13, 2013 8:59 pm

I dunno, maybe I am just a sheep, but the design blog seems to make it pretty clear they are 99% comfortable with balance and content. They now want polish and flow. I am sure we can discuss balance until we are blue in the face but I am not sure how much more gain that is going to be for the game. We probably should consider focusing on how best to improve the flow and presentation of information in the UI. I will try and create a thread when my illness leaves because I have some ideas!
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby Lujo on Wed Feb 13, 2013 9:31 pm

Well, I've allready suggested, or reported let's see:

- More informative victory screens
- Started a second profile with the express purpose of checking the game flow out as throughly as possible, while making notes and trying to edit them into relatively readable essays
- Suggested more user firendly god introductions, particularly doing something about the Pactmaker subdungeon
- suggested moving the first 2 locker slots to the first level of the guild, to make the progression 2/2/2, so a comfortable early game can be had regardless of the lvl2 building (might have it's downsides, but was a legit suggestion)
- Reported changes on the real difficulty of the early directionals, with the new state of things favouring east, at least from a perspective of a vet trying his best to be objective
- Reported there being an inordinate number of wizard quests overall
- Reported the shifting passages bank quest being startlingly difficult because of the location
- Reported that trying out gods with a priest is counterintuitively the worst thing to be trying gods out with. The potential for punishing unsuspecting but well meaning newbies on a critical thing as high as that, it's about as horrible as labeling a bottle of hydrochloric acid "spring water".
- Suggested doing something about it, anything at all
- Reported that the berserker Labyrinth quest was really though
- bunch of things - the whole "balance this" and "nerf that" stuff was only really because there were so few things that looked like they need fiddling. Some of that fiddling related more to gameflow than balance as such. I've been hoping we'd move more into other directions.

Oh, and suggested that if they want people finding stuff out achievements might be the way to go. The ones in Dungeons of Dredmor stepped up my play immensly. People hate on the concept, but it's just terribly used lots of the time.
Last edited by Lujo on Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby Abraxas on Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:15 pm

Many good points are made, but there is one thing I feel the need to argue against. Namely, the post says

a “late-game” infinite locker wouldn’t solve the desire for more space either – it would just be wished for earlier and earlier. Hiding the “true” locker behind some incredibly difficult quest would end up not feeling fair…

I understand the argument, but at the same time, I don't.
In a game where practically everything is locked behind some sort of challenge, lots of it behind very difficult challenges, how come this is the one thing that would feel unfair to put behind a quest?
Would an infinite locker really be such a big deal that the very knowledge that it exists out of their reach would really bother less experienced players (read, non veterans)? For these players, locker management comes naturally as you progress through the game and adds to the experience. You're only getting fervent clamoring for increased locker space from players for whom getting an item to put in the locker is a boring task, by virtue of being trivial yet still time consuming.
If a player reaches a level of play where acquiring items for the locker is trivial, would it really hurt to let them skip that task, after confirming their level of skill through a challenge or some-such?
Sure enough, less experienced players would wish for the infinite locker to be accessible earlier (if they learn of its existence at all), but not any more so than a player would wish they can use quest items or monster classes before completing the respective quests. Keeping tools away from less experienced players because they aren't ready to use them yet is something the game already does plenty of and works greatly. Keeping tools away from veterans because getting them is too boring, now that isn't as great.

The post also goes to mention

No, the locker isn’t going to expand unless we see a way to prevent the same complaints from cropping up yet again once people have had a month to start taking the change for granted.

And this, I don't get even more. If you put an infinite locker behind a challenge that only the veterans who are asking for it can beat, then the only people who would ever take the change from granted are these very veterans. And once they get there, they have no reason to ask for the acquisition threshold of the expanded locker to be lowered, since they already got it. And as for the players who can't get that far yet, on the one hand they won't take the expanded locker for granted because they haven't actually gotten it, and on the other hand if they complain that it should be easier to get, you can give them the same response that can be use regarding nearly every other feature in the game - "Get good enough at the game if you want to use that."

Mind you, this is all coming from someone who doesn't particularly care for bigger lockers, but that's because I'm not very much into impulsive experimentation and the locker space that's there is enough for me. But still, I see these arguments against giving veterans what they want, and I find them difficult to agree with it.
Sure enough, there's always going to be someone complaining about something no matter how you change things, but in this particular case I find it difficult to accept that giving the veterans their candy would really make things worse for everybody else.
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby Lujo on Wed Feb 13, 2013 10:53 pm

Don't bother, sense doesn't have too much to do with it. And I've seen you chide me because I write textwals on stuff. And I understand that this makes so little sense that someone with your attitude on textwalls would feel the urge to write one (it's two now total) on an issue you don't actually have a stake in. It's something you can't explain to them, because if anyone could, they would've figured it out by now.

There's no good reason at all not to give every player a chance to make items unlockerable for 2000 and relocker them for 500 gold once all the buildings are upgraded, and all the preps purchased. Really. For no other reason but saving time - relockering something other than vicious rewards is trivial but takes time, slap 500 gold on that. Relockering vicious rewards is either trivial but time consuming, or just time consuming, slap 2500 gold on that. You'd have people feeling good about scumming because they save money, and you'd have people feel glad for paying the gold to save time. I'm not debating anything, this is true. But they're convinced otherwise, and they're the boss, and if you've ever had to deal with management you know how these things go. We can be glad they can't "fire" us, and see what happens.
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby Blovski on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:17 pm


My very lastest last post on the topic then I'm going to leave it:

Basically, there is currently *one* way to relocker items. Which is to play until you get that item. Currently you can either go for the Silver Challenge, which is usually a bit of a bitch but guarantees the item, or take a goblin tinker around an easy dungeon with the appropriate items prep (and it's often hard to know which category an item falls in) until you happen to find it.

Having some sort of permabuy + costly relocker solution would at least give you two ways (one: gold expenditure, which is an in-game resource and which you can get by playing the game the way *you* want to (flaming, bet on boss, low prep runs, PQI, quest completion, whatever), two: time expenditure, which is an out-of-game resource and which you have to play the game a specific way to do) of getting a few items back. If you make the cost of getting it stacking or doubling so it'd be easy to get 2-3 items but harder and require some bank upgrades to go up to 5-6, you'd also have a *more* unique late-game kingdom state than players currently have.

I doubt that anyone who's played enough of the game to think 'it'd be interesting to do X with X character and X item' hasn't been a bit frustrated by the fact you just need to rinse-repeat a prescribed basic task to get an item.

I don't really agree with your theories about how players value locker items. I don't agree about the slippery slope stuff either - I think it's more that the current replay-until-you-find-it system is not a thing anyone on the forums finds fun than that we want some no-energy auto-find button for everything. I don't really know how it generalises to most people playing it.

Appreciate you guys are prolly sick of it - just giving honest feedback and explaining it. And normally I'm the guy who objects to any change :lol: you guys are awesome and keep up the good work :D
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby Bloggorus on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:21 pm

My opinion of the blog post is that this is the devs trying to tell us to pull our heads in. I would have preferred something along the lines of 'pull you head in' rather than assumptions about what we want and half-baked rhetoric about 'design language'.

It sounds as though the devs are genuinely upset about all these players telling them how to design their game. It probably hurts more that some complain about the long development time as well.

They have every right to be upset, I would be too. We have absolutely no context to work on apart from this forum, which is pretty much a giant wank circle.

The question is; if you have limited development time to build a game and had a choice between polishing end game content that 5% of players will see and initial content that 100% of players will see, which one do you choose.

Look at Diablo 3; universally praised for it's polish, then canned by players for end-game that peters out completely. I would say that the devs want a game that reviews and sells well first and foremost. If people complain about endgame, no doubt subsequent updates will solve it in time. They will probably be faster than Blizzard, I'd say :)
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Re: Design post on the blog!

Postby dislekcia on Wed Feb 13, 2013 11:53 pm

Not frustrated, no. We're doing this design out in the open, it's just that the way we talk about it is quite different to how players experience it. That's always going to happen...

@Blovski: Unfortunately those suggestions still fall foul of the slippery slope... Why only 5-6 items? Why can't you get all of them? The players who want access to more items like this aren't going to want just 6 of them, they want to be able to pick up any and all items whenever, anything else is just wasting time! Why is it so expensive? The alternative only takes 1 run, so it should cost 1 run's worth of gold.

There isn't a way to satisfy this need that doesn't do damage to basic elements of gameplay that are the hooks that keep people playing. Sorry.
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