Author Topic: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc  (Read 1765 times)

th3kaiser

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #25 on: March 29, 2019, 12:33:52 PM »
Still works.

Namino

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #26 on: March 29, 2019, 12:33:59 PM »
What are your goals, specifically?
What is the timeframe to accomplish those goals?

Firstly, thank you for asking. I apologize for what is going to be a long post but I think it's important I clarify why this topic is one I frequently participate in.

My goals are supportive of Greve's, but they are not in character.I am not in the process of skilling up a combat character, nor do I see myself undergoing that trek for the nth time in the future.

Rather, my goals are out of character. I would like to see a redesign or reconfiguration of the skill gain mechanic in Armageddon to one that is more supportive of the basic tenets of game design. I believe that a strong, focused effort in this regard will be beneficial for the health of the game, and satisfy the needs of a segment of the online game playerbase currently desperately under served by Armageddon (particularly Achievers in the Bartle's taxonomy).

Achievers as a taxonomic group are interested in one primary goal -- the accumulation of strength/power for the sake of seeing how far and how quickly they can go. This is akin to mountain-climbers or marathon runners or power lifters, who are constantly seeking new challenges just to see if they can overcome them and punch through to the next challenge. In video games, these are the people who grind to maximum gear-score and levels, fight the optional bosses in JRPGs, and collect all the optional stars in Mario games. In Armageddon, these are the people who want to see a list flushed with <master> when they type skill.

I'll start with the easier of the two questions.

What is the timeframe [sic]?

I argue the timeframe is irrelevant. It could be significantly longer -- even an order of magnitude longer than it is now -- as long as the process of achieving high levels of strength was engaging, fun, and no longer stigmatized by policy. My argument is not, nor has it been, that it takes too long to skill up in Armageddon. Rather, my argument is that the process by which skilling up occurs results in two outcomes -- either the abandonment of the desire to achieve a la stopping at journeyman, or the continued drive to achieve at the cost of what is fun or reasonable in character behavior -- a la grinding on turaals or getting drunk before sparring, or going into the gortok den.

Since my motivations are not for any in character skill of my own but rather a system that the game will benefit from, I'll answer this

What are your goals, specifically?

from this perspective: what aspects should a balanced combat progression system have?

Aspect 1) The process of progression should be smooth and obvious. At no point during the process of skilling up should players be stymied by a lack of appropriate challenges to their skill. Smoothness, in this case, does not imply linearity. Advanced levels of skill can take many times longer to improve than at novice (consider the rate of increase as logarithmic of 1/nth exponential). However, at no point should a player feel discouraged that hours of effort could be wasted if their target does not dodge. Progression should slow, not stall. The degree it slows is up to the designer's judgement as to how long they want the climb to be, but a stall is associated with a general feeling of stagnation where players no longer feel encouraged to even bother trying. Achievers don't like putting effort in if their effort isn't rewarded.

Aspect 2) The process of progression should be tied to increasing challenge, and danger. In most conventional wisdom of game design, a level 50 enemy is significantly more dangerous than a level 1 enemy. Consequently, a level 50 enemy provides more experience than a level 1 enemy -- more than 50 times, in fact. While the amount of experience to go to the next level increases exponentially, the amount of experience increasing challenge provides also increases exponentially (albeit to a lower power). The ability to tackle greater challenges increases as skill improves, and the incentive to tackle these challenges is also provided due to their inherent value. The former is currently true in Armageddon -- it is far easier to kill a mekillot with master skills than with journeyman. However, the latter is really where the system falls down for Armageddon, as there is no incentive to fight mekillots, as they do not provide any more 'experience' (in Armageddon's case, dodges) than a level 5 turaal. Significantly less, in fact.

To summarize, there's two goals of a system that replaces the current one:
1] There is always a target suitable for continued progress.
2] The target that is suitable for your current progress feels equal parts challenging, dangerous, and rewarding

The issue that follows is how do we accomplish this in Armageddon? The process will not be easy. It will require a lot of formulaic approaches and iterative simulations of the consequences of those formulas. When Armageddon was designed, the designers likely didn't have the means by which to simulate or formulate, and therefore didn't anticipate this problem. There is also concern that very highly skilled player characters may prove to be too powerful, which can only be solved by assessing the capabilities of in game threats so that no one ever achieves the threshold of 'immortality'. This also will require quite a bit of simulation and forward thinking.

But today, there are members of this community who do have this aptitude, who would be more than willing to assist in improving the engagement of this game mechanic, if only it were acknowledged to be the problem that it is.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 12:36:23 PM by Namino »

Delirium

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #27 on: March 29, 2019, 12:47:33 PM »
I have a lot of thoughts reading this thread and I'm going to try to sum them up.

1) Sparring is never a waste, and if you're selfish enough that you don't want to train newbies to the point where they can help you, you're your own worst enemy here. Work up your defense while you can't get offense gains. Defense is still important.

2) For that matter, you're all getting so fixed on offense you're forgetting about defense. If you want to reach the point where you can start taking on challenges that will raise your offense, you might need to spend a while working on defense. That's the way the cookie crumbles.

3) While I wish the combat code were less obscure, we're already talking in far more detail about it than would have been permitted a decade ago.

4) If what you're doing isn't working, experiment and find a way that works. I promise you that you can raise combat skills without having to act stupidly (lying down while fighting, etc). You just have to train deliberately and intelligently.  I am speaking from experience here.

5) In other words, while the skill-only-on-fail system is absurd and flawed, it isn't completely broken. You're all starting to make mountains out of molehills. There is no need to fixate so heavily on weapon skills alone or to claim weapon skills are impossible to raise. Yes, they go up absurdly slowly, and I wish sometimes that weren't the case, but a) it makes a truly skilled fighter rare and special, and b) it gives you something to keep striving for throughout your PC's career.

6) Once you have "master" in your weapon skill list, what then? What are you really aiming for? Learn to love the journey. Learn to focus on telling your story, the story of a character, and yes, I'm going to say it, worry less about being the ultimate badass -- after all the achievement means nothing without the progression, the struggle, and sometimes outright difficulty of the journey.
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Namino

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #28 on: March 29, 2019, 12:57:47 PM »
I'll also add as an addendum that I think a lot of what goes on in these threads boils down to certain sections of the Bartle's taxonomy that are currently well served by Armageddon casting aspersions onto portions of the taxonomy that are not currently well served.

Basically if you're sitting here:



You might struggle to understand the needs to people sitting here:



Currently socializers are very well served by Armageddon. I argue that moving towards a game that well serves all sections of the roleplaying community, including achievers, will increase player numbers.

The alternative is to disregard a full quarter of the gaming population. If we're really going to stick our noses up like that, I don't wanna hear people complaining about low player numbers in the future.

Dresan

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #29 on: March 29, 2019, 01:17:28 PM »
What are your goals, specifically?
What is the timeframe to accomplish those goals?

For me there is no goal per se. I am okay with never reaching a cap or being able to one shot mekillots let alone stand toe to toe with them. Frankly if you can get to luirs and redstorm alive you are in a good spot. One of the good things of class changes is the they made this possible quicker, allowing for more potential for rp right out of the box.

After that point the combat grind was something worthwhile to do, if you wanted.  If you got hit then your defense wasn't as good as you thought. If you ever missed neither was your offense. Again this was just one thing to do in the game and who knows maybe in 2 years there would be a competition and you'd see if all that slow boring grind made you the best. There were no illusion this would ever save your life, at best maybe prolong it slight or make people need to plan a bit more. Right now without finding those rare special conditons its just something else you can't do in the game.

Not to de-rail but on a side note there is something seriously off with overall melee combat in this game. There are so many to-hit bonuses on top of offense it seems that sometimes typing kill is better than backstab or sap. Unless you are ganging up 3 v1 or attacking an unarmed person direct combat should be a much lengthier afair when there isn't a huge discrepancy in skills. Its probably another thread but it is probably something that should be looked at when trying to determine what should be considered 'good' in the future
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Riev

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #30 on: March 29, 2019, 01:18:04 PM »
6) Once you have "master" in your weapon skill list, what then? What are you really aiming for? Learn to love the journey. Learn to focus on telling your story, the story of a character, and yes, I'm going to say it, worry less about being the ultimate badass -- after all the achievement means nothing without the progression, the struggle, and sometimes outright difficulty of the journey.

Don't think this is a personal attack, but I see this a lot.

Please don't tell me how to play. I enjoy the "getting there" as much as anyone, but as has been said before, the combat grind often ends with either abandonment, or doing ridiculous things to get skill gains.

Maybe it takes "being intelligent". Maybe you have the secret key to this. Maybe everyone who is complaining will never understand the 'secret' or play the game you do.

You don't get to tell us that we're playing wrong, because we're playing with goals.
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Dresan

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #31 on: March 29, 2019, 01:25:00 PM »
Delirium in regard to some of your point, it is how the old code worked. My understanding is even if a well stated newbie can hit you there will be no beefit to you due to off-def skill discrepency.

Also combat grind was something additional to do in between rp. It might not be your thing but why deny this from others especially those who have a harder time finding the special conditions now needed to improve.
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Delirium

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #32 on: March 29, 2019, 01:33:11 PM »
I really don't think you all understand that I am one of the achievers and I love the combat code.

Bar sitting is literally something I hate doing and have to force myself into.

Dresan, maybe that's right and I'm operating off of old knowledge. I'm not trying to be elitist here. Exactly the opposite. I'm saying all of you could get there, I don't believe I am some sort of outlier here. I trained multiple people very effectively on a PC of mine not so long ago.

No, I'm not going to flat-out outline how for three reasons, 1) because figuring it out is extremely possible and part of the challenge, 2) because I'd probably get in trouble and I don't really want to go that in-depth on the GDB, 3) maybe it is harder now, but honestly I'm skeptical that it is.

I think it just relies more on having PCs around you that are a) willing to work with your PC, and b) whose players understand the code.

Whether that's a good thing or not I can't judge, but the alternative seems to be to permit PCs to rocket to mastery solo, which is its own can of worms. Same reason it was always such a problem when old-style elementalist PCs would hide in a cave for 5 days and come out wrecking face.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 01:35:01 PM by Delirium »
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Delirium

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #33 on: March 29, 2019, 01:40:29 PM »
Also, one more thing. If you have the skill? Use the teach command.

Give someone a 5-10 minute lesson? Teach. Point out something that the other PC could do better RP-wise? Teach.

Teach in conjunction with sparring is extremely powerful and it will help your struggling newbies get gud fast.
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Greve

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #34 on: March 29, 2019, 01:43:50 PM »
I would also like to address the goal itself and the traditional stigma associoated with it.

For better or worse, Armageddon has always had a certain culture where players who care about combat skills are looked down on, probably in part because of the fear that they want to use those skills to PK indiscriminately. Caring about combat skills has somehow become synonymous with being a bad roleplayer, and people will constantaly humblebrag about how much they don't care/know about coded power. You will get ten times as many bad account notes and stern animations from being unruly with the combat code as you would from wantonly robbing every apartment in town or shitting all over the economy by conjuring tens of thousands of 'sid with a questionable cloth-selling script.

And yet at the same time, the majority of gameplay revolves around it. All new players are nudged toward the Byn. Numerous clans are devoted fighting, training, becoming warriors. Others revolve around offering the best equipment to warriors. The game's mantra is "Murder, Corruption, Betrayal." If you're a good player, you might be awarded karma which mostly is used to regulate access to more powerful character options. You play nice and you get to be more powerful; yet a large part of playing nice is to signal a lack of interest in power.

This is not a MUSH. So much of this game's content is centered around combat and conflict that it makes no sense to even ask for the goal of advancing these things. Almost all the game's legends are about how powerful this or that person was, whether that be a Nilazi demon vampire or a particularly famous Byn captain. Or about wars that were fought over control of an area. Or about a really cool murder in broad daylight. This is not a game where it makes sense to be judgmental about the pursuit of power. You'll win praise for working day and night to achieve the political power to order someone killed on a whim, but if you want to be the one who does that killing, half the community is prepared to label you an enemy of the game.

Time and time again, when these issues with the code are brought up, the discussion is filled with thinly-veiled derision toward "achievers." Achieving is not just about jerking off to a skill sheet that's got a lot of <master> on it. We're not trying to break the game. We're pointing out problems with the code that are so obvious that it's difficult to take it seriously when someone defends the way it currently works. Issues like progress being gated exclusively behind dodges, for instance. We're to believe that progress is measured by the risk of a fight, yet we all know that the code utterly fails to honor this. And then when we points this out, we're asked "well, what is your goal in raising those skills?" It's honestly insulting.

Namino

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #35 on: March 29, 2019, 01:45:45 PM »
permit PCs to rocket to mastery solo

This is possible still and one of my major issues because it doesn't correlate with risk or challenge, as outlined in ny larger post above.

Greve knows how to spar effectively for training. As do I. As does Riev. As does 95% of the playerbase supposedly based on the number of times I've rolled into a clan and had someone talk to me like I was 5 years old explaining how one of us should be etwo and the other one ep'd.

You'll have to trust that those of us advocating for changes are also extremely well informed in these matters. And we still have identified a major issue.

And teach asymptotes in efficacy astoundingly fast. You can get someone from novice to apprentice in two teach commands (literally, it takes two) but good luck after that. I've gotten teach command failures (ie, I didn't know a degree of skill high enough) trying to impart my master skills onto journeyman students before.

So, yes. We're all speaking from places of high experience here. I wouldn't discount our opinions on account of a lack of awareness of 'mystical techniques.

Dresan

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #36 on: March 29, 2019, 01:48:07 PM »
@delirium There is no figuring things out. The staff has been pretty clear on how things have changed already.

As been mentioned in other posted and in yours, one of the main ways is to find some willing to work with you and have them be at your level. Not always easy to do in a game of dwindling numbers, and further made tougher depending on your character's situation. Once that person you worked with dies you are stuck with no way to get better. One less thing to do in the game.

Again. Your thinking fits the old code perfectly. Something i liked. Less so with the changes.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 01:50:01 PM by Dresan »
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Greve

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #37 on: March 29, 2019, 01:52:52 PM »
Also, one more thing. If you have the skill? Use the teach command.

Give someone a 5-10 minute lesson? Teach. Point out something that the other PC could do better RP-wise? Teach.

Teach in conjunction with sparring is extremely powerful and it will help your struggling newbies get gud fast.

And that works great for the skills that are not being discussed here. Doesn't work at all for weapon skills because if two characters have such a gulf in combat skills that one is able to codedly teach the other, they didn't need to do it. They'd be able to spar the normal way. If one guy has advanced slashing and the other has journeyman, teach won't work. If the other has novice slashing, the problem doesn't exist. And in nearly all cases, reality will be that both have journeyman slashing and can't miss eachother, and while they could theoretically spar and gain defense until they can miss, I've been in that situation plenty of times and can attest to the fact that even RL weeks of doing so did not result in either character gaining so much defense that dodging began to happen.

I suspect one of the components of this problem is the fact that your attacks are offense plus weaponskill while dodging is just defense, so the amount of defense that one needs to dodge another's attack is so much higher that only extreme cases qualify. Like if one guy has 30 slashing and 30 offense while the other has 50 defense, the code considers the former's attacks to be superior to the latter's defense. Defensive checks are then bolstered by parry and shield use, but parrying and blocking does not count as a failure for skillgains.

Delirium

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #38 on: March 29, 2019, 01:58:20 PM »
Weapon skills don't work in a vacuum, but ok, I don't think anyone's going to change anyone's mind here. I'll try a top-level combat PC sometime (enforcer, fighter) and then we'll see if I figure out what you're all complaining of.

I have not found teach+sparring together to be redundant. Use both.

Last, if you're so ready to be offended by a PC/Player trying to help yours be effective ("like I'm five years old") then I don't know what to say.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 02:03:02 PM by Delirium »
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Riev

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #39 on: March 29, 2019, 02:00:21 PM »
As an added note: I love teach.

I would vastly... VASTLY enjoy if (master) was hard to reach, so hard that without someone who IS (master) teaching you will take a lot of effort.

But if you're a journeyman with swords, and a swordmaster gives you teaches, it should work. You clearly know which end of the blade to hold, but you need to be taught techniques and combinations that a (master) is more likely to know.

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Dresan

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #40 on: March 29, 2019, 02:10:54 PM »
The game would also benefit from soen staff approved guildlines for teach as well. The opinions on what is good teach rp differ i feel, with some opinion being slightly excessive and deterring from an otherwise fun rp experience.
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Cerelum

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #41 on: March 29, 2019, 03:20:26 PM »
The game would also benefit from soen staff approved guildlines for teach as well. The opinions on what is good teach rp differ i feel, with some opinion being slightly excessive and deterring from an otherwise fun rp experience.

I only have one Karma so Iím definitely not the authority on teaching.

But my view is itís better to ask forgiveness than permission.

Not every teach command needs to have seven hours of emotes and tells attached.

Say itís skinning Iím teaching, Iíll emote out adjusting the body and flavorfully skinning it, then teach skinning homeboy.
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Cerelum

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #42 on: March 29, 2019, 03:27:07 PM »
Also in regard to the folks getting defensive about not mastering x and y combat skills due to having to find exotic creatures or 50 day warriors.

Say they changed it to be every fail like a crafting recipe? Now youíre a master slasher or whatever in 4-5 days played.  Then what? Fight all the other master combat guys like itís highlander?  Then the only difference will he stats and race.

The Mul is still gonna kill you 75% of the time.

When I advance my combat abilities itís mostly so an errant bug that rolls in doesnít decapitate me instantly and run down my bug like itís a cheetah when I flee.

But I tend to be more pve than pvp.
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Riev

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #43 on: March 29, 2019, 03:38:05 PM »
Also in regard to the folks getting defensive about not mastering x and y combat skills due to having to find exotic creatures or 50 day warriors.

Say they changed it to be every fail like a crafting recipe? Now you’re a master slasher or whatever in 4-5 days played.  Then what? Fight all the other master combat guys like it’s highlander?  Then the only difference will he stats and race.

The Mul is still gonna kill you 75% of the time.

When I advance my combat abilities it’s mostly so an errant bug that rolls in doesn’t decapitate me instantly and run down my bug like it’s a cheetah when I flee.

But I tend to be more pve than pvp.

The issue isn't "then what". As others have said, if its SUPPOSED to take longer to reach (master) then so be it. We've accepted that. But the methods one has to engage in, to reach that level, border on the often-ridiculous and it only serves to be doing something rather Out of Character.

What I'm trying to say, and I think others as well, is that what is the purpose of high weapon skills, or skills that branch off them, while simultaneously forcing very odd training regimens to get to that level.
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In Dreams

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #44 on: March 29, 2019, 03:51:35 PM »
Not that there isn't a problem with satisfying the "achievers", because they should be happy playing for that aspect when they can be accomodated too, but I do kind of worry what kind of world we'll be left with if we make stuff like that too achievable, even if it's dangerous or whatever.

When I'm roleplaying with someone I enjoy, I already get pretty bothered when I start getting that sense that, "Oh, time's up, I must drop everything and drone through another sparring session with Timmy the uberwarrior again because that's my priority here."

It's really easy to rip the current system and I get that it's old and difficult in a lot of ways, but the tightrope of balance Armageddon has to walk to satisfy the really, really broad spectrum of playstyles for a game like this is extremely difficult. I feel that doesn't get acknowledged nearly enough. There are no easy solutions here, even if it's easy to point out problems.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 04:02:55 PM by In Dreams »

Eyeball

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #45 on: March 29, 2019, 04:06:15 PM »
1) Sparring is never a waste, and if you're selfish enough that you don't want to train newbies to the point where they can help you, you're your own worst enemy here. Work up your defense while you can't get offense gains. Defense is still important.

I don't even know where to start with this. Listen to what you're saying. You're being selfish if you don't grind hard enough in the most repetitive way to lift half the playerbase over time in hopes that one will live long enough to start giving you a challenge? Wouldn't it be better to just fix the combat system?

But if you can still improve at defense when newbie Amos gets his inevitable crit to your head, I'm not so dissatisfied. My impression was that improvements to defense are gated in the same way as offense.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 04:14:37 PM by Eyeball »

Delirium

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #46 on: March 29, 2019, 04:21:38 PM »
I have never once gotten the impression that fighting lower skill opponents is useless for gaining defense? Like ever?

Not sure where that is coming from. I strongly suspect it is a non-issue.
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Dresan

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #47 on: March 29, 2019, 04:23:00 PM »
@in dreams i am  not sure whether a person can learn or not effects that experience. Since you are basically referring to clan schedule. Again maybe those type of clans aren't your cup of tea but whether someone can or can't improve in combat has nothing to do with it.

Lastly, while i can't speak about everyone, some of us aren't talking about making anything too achievable. It never has been, even when people talked about the uber warriors of decades past no one ever mentioned being maxed out, just really high at best. And at the end nothing saved them.

I would like to think people choose to rp with you because its fun and enjoyable, not because there is absolutely nothing else worthwhile for their characters to be doing in the game.
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In Dreams

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #48 on: March 29, 2019, 04:29:42 PM »
Sorry Dresan, it's my fault that I wasn't more clear there!

The point was that with some players of that sort, maybe even just sometimes, their roleplay can sort of revolve around the skillups instead of the skillups revolving around the roleplay. I understand why, because that's some intrinsic drive of their brains that says, "Achieve!" and they cannot resist it, it's what they enjoy and nothing will change that even if they're also spectacular roleplayers, and yes, some of them are. No one's at fault here!

But, if suddenly, superwarriors have to kill mekillots to get to <nachos with hot sauce> skill level, then I kind of dread the day when, IC, I'm hearing people constantly drawing up terrible excuses to hunt mekillots all the time when really, hunting mekillots should be a pretty monumental and frightening task to undertake. For anyone. Not that it never happens of course, or we wouldn't have mekillot bone sword to "chop da mothafuckas" up with. But now there's daily mekillot hunts because they've figured out precisely where and how to do it the easiest and get their skillups from doing it. Instead of having to spar Timmy the uberwarrior, they now have to get up and go to their mekillot hunt at X time of the day every day at this precise location where the mekillots appear, because that's how they get their skillups.

The point is, mekillot hunting aside since that's just an example, wherever that bar gets set, the rest of the non-achiever playerbase is going to be here for that ride the achievers are going to take us on in pursuit of their <nachos with hot sauce>.

It's not easy to decide where or how to set that bar, knowing it'll affect everything and everybody else in the game.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2019, 04:37:09 PM by In Dreams »

Dresan

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Re: Weapon Skills - Piercing, Bludgeoning etc
« Reply #49 on: March 29, 2019, 04:36:30 PM »
Fair. But if that is their thing so be it. As long as they are roleplaying around it.

Again might not be your thing, but I myself would probably have more fun interacting with them than doing fountain rp. I rather them playing the game than not.
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