The Reset "Problem"

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The Reset "Problem"

Postby Taylor » Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:26 pm

(Rambling about reset and why it's a problem, can be skipped if you don't really care:)
The reason I've been messing around with what reset does and what you get to keep after reset is that, quite simply, new users don't like reset.

The problem is, PBN is really two games. There's the endgame, which is a strategy game that has a clear winning condition. For Infusers, it's clear what's going on, when someone wins, and when the game is over. The rune game is also one that, at least as it's currently set up, requires a reset afterwards so that people can play it again. It's like playing a game of Risk or Monopoly (only hopefully less boring). At the end the pieces go back in the box and you can start over again with everyone on a level playing field.

Then there's the RPG. It ties into the rune game somewhat at higher levels, but at lower levels you might not even know the rune game is going on, and you're certainly not involved with it. When reset happens, if you haven't reached Infusion, you lose everything because of reasons completely unrelated to you (I just had someone call it "losing everything you've worked for").

RPGs are normally about leveling up your character and getting continually stronger, not weaker. Most people don't like losing your whole character (except for roguelike players, and even then only when it's your "fault"). It's not that big a deal to veterans, both because they can see the bigger picture and also because they've gotten to the point where they're good enough that it's trivial for them to reach Infusion, even without their entire inventory (seriously, wow guys, I think we had people gathering runes in less than 24 hours), but I think it's a major turn-off to people who don't already know what's going on (and possibly a reason why most of the few people who have actually stuck around are former SSW players).

(Discussion of possible solutions to the problem, the main point of this post:)
My original plan, and one I had hoped to have done by this round, was to make reset optional for people who hadn't reached Infusion (or maybe even for anyone). If you didn't want to, you wouldn't reset: you'd keep your stats, items, spells and mission progress. The caveat would be that you couldn't get Infusion until someone from your society who had reset gets it, and you couldn't send items to people who hadn't reached Infusion.

But today I thought of the possibility of making Infusion available to everyone. This has the advantage of letting new players get involved with the war much more quickly, which after all is the "point" of the game, and might also help them be more accepting of reset because they understand why it's there.

The disadvantage is that making it available at the beginning means I'm dumping a lot of complex mechanics on people pretty early, and having to learn about Infusion and runes at the same time you're still trying to figure out combat and moving around might be too much. It also means that there could be people who don't really understand the strategies involved going out and messing things up by infusing too early (I actually think that could make things more interesting, but it might be annoying to more experienced players).

Right now I'm leaning towards the second option. The first is really just a band-aid; reset is part of the game, and I can't see it going away without some serious changes to the way the endgame works. Letting players delay it is just that: a delay. And since the "point" of the game is the war for the city, it makes sense to let new players get into that as quickly as possible.

Is that something you'd support, or does it not seem like a good idea to you?
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby babylonhoruv » Mon Apr 22, 2013 8:33 pm

I actually got through all the quests but the last one for all 4 societies within 8 hours and then the last quest for the weirdfellows within the next few. I know there was a beelzebro who was infusion ready before that.

Putting infusion in from the beginning would emphasize that infusion is, indeed, the point of the game. My concern about that is that it opens up new players to quick PVP immediately. Maybe players should be quick PVP proof for a number of battles to give new players a chance to experience the game and those that have played and don't like PVP a chance to get a peace necklace?

I think having newbies infusing randomly is part of the fun, it means that the veterans need to do some team management and team management is one of the skills I enjoy in games like this a lot (that and diplomacy, diplomacy is probably my favorite)

The game is really a multiplayer strategy game as opposed to an RPG, the RPG elements just support the multiplayer strategy part.
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby Salen » Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:13 pm

i like it, and even if they are pvp ready early there is clearly two ways right now that they can prevent that...but yeah giving them a day free from violence would be awesome too.

as for reset, i like the idea of keeping the items, it is really cool that you put that in there, i guess i just don't see it as losing things cause i've always played games that reset ( a whopping two so far) so it doesn't bother me overmuch.

the other possibility could be making it take longer to get to infusion, giving players a chance to learn everything in the game first. this would prolly entail more quests and more boss fights, but would take them through every part of the whole landscape. drawing that out so that you don't hit infusion for about a day? maybe draw it out so that we savor the game and not just blindly cram through the stories/quests to get it over with? not that i want to put more quests in the wiki, but it was a thought of mine for awhile now. for instance: alot of the creatures have levels that we may need to get to to fight them, if i can't get into the sewer brewery till i'm level 30, well that would take awhile, or alot of playing. may even give the round some more time, especially if you try the bonus fights after infusion; though their levels may have to come down a smooch cause level 65 would take forever LOL! again just some thoughts
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby babylonhoruv » Tue Apr 23, 2013 7:20 pm

I have discovered a reason to make infusion take effort. I'll explain after I finish exploiting how easy it currently is to earn infusion...
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby babylonhoruv » Tue Apr 23, 2013 8:58 pm

OK, so I switched to Cthulhuligan, runed like half the town, then to Beelzebro, runed like half the town. Obviously this is going to mess up everyone else's rune generation. Now currently you have to complete quests, which give you favor, this slowed me down somewhat. if you don't have to do even that I could have done this even more easily. I think false flag operations like I just did are a fun part of the game, but they shouldn't be too easy to do.
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby Salen » Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:58 pm

awesome........and i 'just ' got infusion and now i'm already behind the 8 ball....and quite possibly the 9 ball too. with little time to play it does suck when everyone else gets thousands of runes before i can even get any, but i can't imagine runes from the start....the board would probably be covered on day one with all the switching going on.
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby Taylor » Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:46 pm

babylonhoruv wrote:OK, so I switched to Cthulhuligan, runed like half the town, then to Beelzebro, runed like half the town. Obviously this is going to mess up everyone else's rune generation. Now currently you have to complete quests, which give you favor, this slowed me down somewhat. if you don't have to do even that I could have done this even more easily. I think false flag operations like I just did are a fun part of the game, but they shouldn't be too easy to do.

Well, if that's the only issue, there are ways to make that more difficult.
I could limit it so you could only switch societies once per day, make it so it doesn't happen til rollover, or even just make you wait a day after switching before you start infusing.
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby Salen » Wed Apr 24, 2013 10:34 pm

waiting a day would be cool cause you could see them join and at least prepare......something, well at least you would have warning. how difficult is it to make the runes you have placed down automatically return to you if you switch then wait a day? that would also give players an option to get runes back that they have heaped in a now defunct sector....sounds hard, just thought i'd see if it was mind numbingly hard
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby Taylor » Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:10 pm

Nah, it shouldn't be that hard (though it's definitely not something I can do in the middle of a round because it'd involve changing the way the runes are stored).
I'm not really sure I want runes to be recoverable though.
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Re: The Reset "Problem"

Postby Taylor » Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:36 pm

What if you lost all the runes you had (or maybe not all, but 50% or something) when you switched societies? It would still let you do false flag ops if you wanted to, but it'd take more time because you'd have to actually earn the runes before doing it. The only downside I can see is it being a problem for people who actually want to switch societies, but by the time you have a lot of runes you'd probably be pretty set.
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