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Aurenian

What are skills? and how do they work?

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Grinding is dull gameplay, I am advocating interesting gameplay. The dullest "gameplay", which even doesn't deserve that name, is clicking and watching timer bars to alter some stratistics.

 

For me, a system as you discribe would be the horror, and it would be out of the question to waste time with such a game. I seriously hope it won't go that direction, not only becasue it would ruin this game, but because one more terrible but cleverly marketed space game would be sucking even more blood out of the genre, making it even harder for a proper space sim MMO (no instancing, real persistence, real player-driven sandbox, real gameplay instead of fostering statistics) to get known and rise to a successful niche.

You are not forced in waiting for the "timer bars" to filll. You can go out, build things, go mine, go kill some alien herd of spacegoats.  There needs to be a progression system, because it's a game and people love seeing "your upgrade is completely" or, in more traditional MMOs, "CZ MATE, you reached arbitrary level X". IT's simple psychological rewarding when it comes to playing anything good sir.

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One thing I hate about Most MMOs out today...

 

Skill bars.  "rotations" ... all that stuff.

 

When I play D&D I generally play Archers... in combat they basically have 1 skill that they use a bunch... that and movement is all I need.  Or I'll play a big axe wielding warrior.  They're simple. 

 

In SciFi games I like being a star fighter pilot.  My favorite games of all time are the old Star Wars X-wing and Tie Fighter games.  I still have my original floppy disks from way back... playing it on a DOS computer before WIndows...

 

And what is that gameplay?  I fire the energy weapons... or torpedoes... I can move power around to increase or decrease shields or change the fire rate of the guns... and move at various speeds to get in range and on target.  Any skill involved is my own...

 

 

 

So... I for one don't want the MMO skill bars that have infected MMOs of late.  Skills I can see being included though would be things like mining ... gathering... crafting... skills.  Maybe hacking skills... Utility type skills.

 

I guess I'm saying I don't like combat skills... I think the skill should lie with the player and how they move and use the ability to fire their weapons... rather than triggering a "skill"

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In a building game... Of Which This Is...  Progression can be handled differently.

 

What we build... together... which allows us to build more and better and different things that we couldn't before... that's the progression.  I don't think this game needs to have our characters have Levels... and in fact I'd be disappointed if our characters have levels.

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In a building game... Of Which This Is...  Progression can be handled differently.

 

What we build... together... which allows us to build more and better and different things that we couldn't before... that's the progression.  I don't think this game needs to have our characters have Levels... and in fact I'd be disappointed if our characters have levels.

They have skills, not levels. Your skill investement shows what kind of role you play. You know, role as in Role Playing Game, of which this game is.

You simply can't be everything at once. You are not Batman. And you need a system for character progression in the game. People LIKE progression. Why? Because the wworld around us moves very, very , very slowly. And having the sweet experience of seeing a bar fulfill faster than in comparison to the world around us makes us happy in a very subconsciouss way. 

 

I'm totally with you good sir, don't get me wrong, I hate levels as well, but this is about a game that aims for a hundred thousand players, not a few hundreds on the same server. And sadly, the masses like progression more than you or I do. And the devs need to compromise on a leveling system that satisfies everyone.

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I'm not against utility skills leveling up...

 

But I don't think our characters should have levels themselves that change hit points... or what equipment you can wear...  There are lots of progression methods.  Territory control for one. The initial low tech mining and manufacturing buildings we build which will eventually allow more advanced such buildings and space craft to be built.  The simple amassing of wealth is a progression system all its own.

 

I don't necessarily want to be able to do everything.  I like the idea of specializing to some degree... Especially in crafting.  A crafter can't become famous and sought after unless what they offer is a limited resource. 

 

What I'm against is the combat skill bars that WoW and every mediocre MMO out there that's tried to copy them has.

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I'm not against utility skills leveling up...

 

But I don't think our characters should have levels themselves that change hit points... or what equipment you can wear...  There are lots of progression methods.  Territory control for one. The initial low tech mining and manufacturing buildings we build which will eventually allow more advanced such buildings and space craft to be built.  The simple amassing of wealth is a progression system all its own.

 

I don't necessarily want to be able to do everything.  I like the idea of specializing to some degree... Especially in crafting.  A crafter can't become famous and sought after unless what they offer is a limited resource. 

 

What I'm against is the combat skill bars that WoW and every mediocre MMO out there that's tried to copy them has.

 

Well, you can wear plated armor. But you need training with it, otherwise you are just a dude, fumbling around like a cartoon.

 

Same goes for a jackhammer. You don't need a degree to put a jackhammer on the ground and press a button. But you need training to use it properly (and possibly muscle).

 

Same goes with everything. Skills will simply increase bonuses on certain specialisations. Everyone can get a sniper rifle and fire it, nobody blocks you from doing that, but don't expect the bullet to magically land on the enemy a kilometer away. THAT takes investment to increase that skill.

 

And that's how skill points will work given the nature of the game. It's not based on RNG the way devs explained it. You won't be having "critical chance", no dice will roll on the game's part. Perhaps on "chests", there will be a roll system to determine if you find something rare or not if exploration has treasure rewards, but not combat.

 

If I specialise on handling weapons' systems, I'll be better at that, because I chose to invest my upgrade time on it, therefore being a weapons systems operator in a large capital ship. That makes me have a utility different than yours for example, who will be a builder/miner/harvester/whathaveyou, than I would. We all are given or choose a purpose good sir. You'll just have to see what makes you have more fun and makes you belong to, then go for that.

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My point is that if they make the various systems in the game more complex than a standard MMO, then specializations will emerge naturally in the player base. Thus rendering a standard skill system obsolete.

 

Take your sniper example. If the game's idea of ranged combat is just 'point the shooty end at the enemy' then everyone could be a sniper. But if they make shooting a bit more complex by giving different guns and ammo properties that affect accuracy at different ranges then suddenly it gets a bit harder. Throw in some environmental effects as well, like wind, smoke etc and hitting that person 3k away requires some serious practice.

 

A player that has spent the hours to be able to do that every time has become a sniper.

 

Say they decide they've mastered that so they'll go into ship building. They open up the build menu and are confronted by a list of a couple of hundred machine parts ranging from light bulbs and power cells to transmat coils and plasma condensors. They'll have no clue how to build an engine let alone an orbital spacecraft. They'll have to study up on what goes with what to make each device their ship needs. They'll have to learn through experimentation and reverse engineering the optimal configurations for everything. They'll have to learn how to cut down on unnecessary weight and somehow make something that looks cool if they want it to sell.

A player that does that will become an engineer, with a specialization in small orbital ships. If they want to build freighters they'll need to do a whole lot more research and experimentation. If they want to build large warships they'll need to do even more.

And this is assuming they have access to the resource collection, refining, and manufacturing infrastructure they need. Otherwise they'll have to learn how to do that passably well or pay for the services of someone who can.

Done correctly player specialization is about learning how to play the game well. Not learning which skill to train next.

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@Aurenian


That is correct good sir. If you specialise in managing weapons systems for a battlecruiser, you are the guy people will want to operate the weapons systems. If I have a ship driver specialisation, then I will be chosen for the ship driver post.

And those two skills could be upgrades to a previous tier of skills, with "basic pilot training" upgrading to "ship driver".

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but He's talking about it being natural and tied to the player... where as you're talking about it being codified into game mechanics. 

 

In his system the intricacies of how each system works and how well a person knows and can manipulate them to achieve results determines whether other people recognize them as being skillful... not the game applying any label. 

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but He's talking about it being natural and tied to the player... where as you're talking about it being codified into game mechanics. 

 

In his system the intricacies of how each system works and how well a person knows and can manipulate them to achieve results determines whether other people recognize them as being skillful... not the game applying any label. 

A game like WoW had codified skills, but the player was the one that dictated when and where to apply them. Perhaps a person with a higher skill level investment on a particular field can do things faster, like lock-on times, while another specialised on length of engagement, making those two have different utilities they brought on a certain ship gameplay.

 

Sadly, you can't make a game be everything. Dual has to compromise with a skillpoint investment system for combat at least, but it can be applied to mining and crafting, with high skills on a trade allowing a crafter to set up more elements on his designs and a miner to locate ores easier.

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Perhaps a person with a higher skill level investment on a particular field can do things faster, like lock-on times, while another specialised on length of engagement, making those two have different utilities they brought on a certain ship gameplay.

 

This would be best. I just don't see how opening a ship menu, scrolling down, selecting a turret, and clicking the fire button requires any skill from me, a human. But when codified it makes sense, and gives a greater sense of immersion.

 

I just don't want to see skills being a hindrance by being a grind, or easily obtainable/easily maxed out. This may sound easier said than done, but that's what's needed.

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This would be best. I just don't see how opening a ship menu, scrolling down, selecting a turret, and clicking the fire button requires any skill from me, a human. But when codified it makes sense, and gives a greater sense of immersion.

 

I just don't want to see skills being a hindrance by being a grind, or easily obtainable/easily maxed out. This may sound easier said than done, but that's what's needed.

The way I expect it given the devblogs, your skills determine how fast you can lock on, or how far you can lock, making you a different asset on a ship's crew depending on the ship's role. And I strongly advocate and believe , the devs will implement a death penalty that will make you lose skillpoints, so to make skills not so easily maxed.

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Sure. If they go with the eve style lock on combat then there won't be a lot of player skill involved in targeting. 

 

Having arbitrary skill trees for it isn't going to make that better though. It just means that every fire control officer will have the same skill set trained and lock time will come down to human reaction time (and lag).

 

I think things like lock times and sensor distance is better handled with technology and tactics. Make a ship with good sensors, Have scouts and drones on the perimeter to hunt for the enemy.
If you get the drop on someone and start firing before they can open the weapons menu then you'll have a bigger advantage than systems lock III

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Sure. If they go with the eve style lock on combat then there won't be a lot of player skill involved in targeting. 

 

Having arbitrary skill trees for it isn't going to make that better though. It just means that every fire control officer will have the same skill set trained and lock time will come down to human reaction time (and lag).

 

I think things like lock times and sensor distance is better handled with technology and tactics. Make a ship with good sensors, Have scouts and drones on the perimeter to hunt for the enemy.

If you get the drop on someone and start firing before they can open the weapons menu then you'll have a bigger advantage than systems lock III

The way the demonstrate the game on twitter, it seems they actually go for a "keep in cross-hairs until lock/ Keep in your field of view to maintain lock" kind of gameplay. The field of view to maintain lock is of course your cockpit's field of view, not your head looking around. Which is col,imo, it will add a space-joust tactic in the game, like space battles will be probably in the future. The guys with the best timing and fire run patterns will win, the others, will lose. There is lock-no, but there's also skill involved in a larger scale and one-on-one dogfights. I suggest you guys find a good LUA scripts guy and tell him to make you a jetcraft that can do loops and rolls to confuse your attackers if you wanna go for an X-Wing kind of gameplay.

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"Weapons menu" - nothing like that during the actual battle please. In Jumpgate, you had a nifty GUI (not just menus) to configure your ship using eqipment in your possession before launch (weapons, reactors, radars, engines, ECM, capacitors, lots of very specialized equipment, like a "Whistle", which is a device for hunters that attracts AI space monsters, etc.). Once in space, you can group weapons, like 1) only long range weapons, 2) only energy weapons, 3) alpha strike (all weapons), similar to mech games. If the enemy is still far away, this allows to only use the long range weapons to save energy or ammunition, etc.

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Without posting walls of text like Mr. I'm armed with a thesaurus and I know how to use it here, I think it's going to be a variation of the simple real-world time skill-queue mechanic present in EVE Online, where 'skill trees' are less trees and more dependency lists, where you can learn any skill, provided you have the required skill for it, and since most skills of same direction have shared base requirements, you can cross-train into new play-styles very easily. EVE has a lot of things done right and that's likely why it's been almost 15 years since it's release and it's still going strong.

 

"Just look at how EVE does it" seems to be the running theme here  :lol:

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Without posting walls of text like Mr. I'm armed with a thesaurus and I know how to use it here, I think it's going to be a variation of the simple real-world time skill-queue mechanic present in EVE Online, where 'skill trees' are less trees and more dependency lists, where you can learn any skill, provided you have the required skill for it, and since most skills of same direction have shared base requirements, you can cross-train into new play-styles very easily. EVE has a lot of things done right and that's likely why it's been almost 15 years since it's release and it's still going strong.

 

"Just look at how EVE does it" seems to be the running theme here  :lol:

They did confirm it will be horizontal progression system. But you still compare EVE's point and click adventure gameplay in PvP, with stationary ships and attributes to a game with physics, mass and ships' structural integrity of the frame playing a role in their effectiveness. As far as the devs have explained it, skill will allow you to create elements (consoles, screens etc. ) and make you BETTER at using them, while a guy wihout a specialisation won't be as effective at them. Just because the two systems share the horizontal progression "Wait to upgrade" theme, doesn't mean that the core gameplay in PvP will be based on the same mechanics. You seem to be one of the "I want EVE 2.0. with Legos in space" kind of person, which is apparent, due to the toxicity that saps out of you with every post.

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You seem to be one of the "I want EVE 2.0. with Legos in space" kind of person, which is apparent, due to the toxicity that saps out of you with every post.

I'm not sure whether you've played EVE or not, but I don't think you're giving it credit where it's due.

 

EVE Online actually has some interesting ship physics that over the years have given rise and fall to extensive PvP meta, and the way I see Dual Universe, it will be an extension of the complexity in the ship physics, which will lead to an even greater meta diversity over the course of people learning, figuring out how a particular play-style works, and adapting to existing play-styles.

 

And, while extremely generalized and sounding shallow, yes, I would in fact appreciate a "EVE 2.0 with voxels", because that would make it the greater game, as living up to the "EVE" part would be a tremendous accomplishment in itself.

 

If you'd like to further argue and discuss this point, I suggest skimming this thread from 2005, which brings up some interesting points from someone who takes such a stance against the game as you do.

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I'm not sure whether you've played EVE or not, but I don't think you're giving it credit where it's due.

 

EVE Online actually has some interesting ship physics that over the years have given rise and fall to extensive PvP meta, and the way I see Dual Universe, it will be an extension of the complexity in the ship physics, which will lead to an even greater meta diversity over the course of people learning, figuring out how a particular play-style works, and adapting to existing play-styles.

 

And, while extremely generalized and sounding shallow, yes, I would in fact appreciate a "EVE 2.0 with voxels", because that would make it the greater game, as living up to the "EVE" part would be a tremendous accomplishment in itself.

 

If you'd like to further argue and discuss this point, I suggest skimming this thread from 2005, which brings up some interesting points from someone who takes such a stance against the game as you do.

Excuse me, but, what physics are you talking about? You mean the orbit function around an enemy ship? Cause that is totally an animation trick. Eve is played in a 2D surface with 3D graphics for appearences' sake. Last I've checked, EVE did not sport firing paths. IT was "focus X target, nuke them down, move to the next" or "hide inside the bubble, hope they won't bring a titan".

 

 

EVE has dues its owed. It has given rise to gameplay that was unthought and unseen for its time, but also, it gave birth to multiboxing. Lots and lots of multiboxing. Also, PLEX!

 

The point is, you can't have an EVE 2.0. gameplay for a voxel engine game, cause it would be like using a grenade to kill a spider. Sure, it would be super effective, but, you could do the same with your boot, it costs nothing. You can have an EVE-like feel to it when it comes to trade and players curving turf for their own, but it's quite impractical to have EVE's attributes system in a game where such things are not predefined by the devs but by palyer design. The meta is flowing with whatever nonsense programmers like me will be able to do with the LUA scripts, not by arbitrary percentage bonuses on skills.

 

 

Spreadsheets are a fair-game though. Let's keep that from EVE. I would like to see a dedicated logistics tree that makes a guy in your org to act like a broker for trading with other brokers.

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I did play EVE and couldn't believe the skill tree tediousness. The popularity of that game became a mystery to me like the popularity of reality TV or techno.

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I did play EVE and couldn't believe the skill tree tediousness. The popularity of that game became a mystery to me like the popularity of reality TV or techno.

It's where the majority of EVE's learning curve comes from, really  :D

 

LearningCurve.jpg

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From what I saw of it the main skills in eve were learning how to fly, manage people, and work as a team. The training trees got in the way of actually playing the game.

Sklls will probably simply make you better at what you specialised at. A ground soldier will specialise into locking on targets with a particular kind of firearm faster (or instantly upon tagging them in his cross-hairs), while a ship's pilot will have access to different levels of handling the ship. After all, a guy with no driving experience is clanky, spastic and dangerous for the passengers, while a trained person is preceise and can move with ease. These things can be emulated through the skill trees.

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After all, a guy with no driving experience is clanky, spastic and dangerous for the passengers, while a trained person is preceise and can move with ease. These things can be emulated through the skill trees.

 

In a car driving game, just let the players drive cars instead of emulating car driving through skill trees. In a space game, just let the players fly space ships instead of emulating space flight through skill trees.

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