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General Forge Forums => First Thoughts => Topic started by: Godel on February 08, 2010, 05:22:17 AM

Title: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: Godel on February 08, 2010, 05:22:17 AM
Hello all,  I am here to post about myEpicLife [mEL].

mEL is meant to be a simple hack-n-slash style game that allows players to easily feel like they can control their characters. I have come up with an overview of a combat system that works as an evolving, tiered skill system for combat encounters utilizing combos. The player will know the skill and needs to roll only damage. There is no need to roll to-hit, as its meant to be quick and easy. Albeit, there is a simple system set up for dodging, countering, and damage washing. The object of mEL is to make an easy, followable combat system that can easily be learned, but hard to master.

Character classes are unique in the aspect that they are original content. They work more or less as varied hybrids with specialized avenues of approach. Tanks heal, ranged damage wears heavy armor, and medium-range controllers work "pets" to maintain battlefield composure. Since attacking is made to be easy and fluid, characters and character sheets are a little more complicated. They work on a ranked leveling system where performance improves the character to higher ranks of power, allowing for more character utilization. Characters will have to accomplish small goals, such as: Hitting five times in a row, dodging five times in a row, to gain moral points. Moral points are then spent to upgrade character traits, ie.:  lazy, indecisive, happy, friendly, etc.. These traits will also help characters in defining their role-playing a bit better by giving them character traits to follow. Bonuses and penalties from traits are applied to all aspects of the game. Characters will have to have some negative traits with positive traits that they must work out of through the advancement in the game.

This brings me to my gamist questions. I have already decided a general outline for character development through six(6) ranks of power advancement.
My question is: Have any gamist rpg's (or any at all) ever tried to allow one player to control multiple PCs at once?

My next step in development is to attempt to allow a PC to control up to three(3) characters alongside their own to attempt to create a power squad. Thus, this would allow a gaming group of four(4) people and a GM to create an advanced party of up to sixteen(16) characters in which to fight on a new scale of epic. Ergo, myEpicLife.

I have been racking my brain over this for a few days and haven't really gotten anywhere. My game is designed so that all character classes are proficient in trees of their class, that the choice isn't what to specialize in (ie.: Fire or Ice or Thunder), but rather which tree to utilize first to later link to another for the best results. By giving players the ability to utilize up to four characters at once, they would then almost have to play four characters at once, and I don't think this would work/be very easy.

Any ideas, Forge?

Title: Re: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: leodegrance on February 08, 2010, 06:39:29 AM
reading your post made me wish to have fluent writing english skills (which I dont).
It's a couple of years I'm working on a gamist, ODnD based, multi-character RPG (unfortunately in Italian - my native language) and I've been struggling a lot too on the problematics that allowing more than one character per player can bring (i.e. your own party building, synergies between one or more of your characters, synergies between different parties).
I've made the same request you did on another forum time ago, and I've been answered that Ars Magica (not exactly a gamist approach to RPG) was the only multi char rpg on the market. I've looked on the internet as well for indies project but I've found nothing. I hope other forgist can help (I'd be glad too).

For which concern the use of 4 characters at once, I don't see the problem. As long as you have a light-rules approach to the game, I think it would be FUNNY instead of "not easy" to use linked powers and try and build combos between your squad members. Sincerely I think it might be fun even with an heavy-rules approach.

Title: Re: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: Warrior Monk on February 08, 2010, 09:50:55 AM
If you think going rules heavy would be too complex, try a single ability tree for each character. Half of the tree would be individual abilities and the other half, group related abilities. Hey, perhaps it should be a single groupal ability tree, where synergy between group members adds for some abilities and imposes penalties on others. Try getting all abilities on a single tree to see if it works. Group speed would be the media from every member and group will have as many attacks as members it has. So perhaps it can go up to six members if you plan it well. Best regards


Title: Re: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: Godel on February 08, 2010, 11:50:08 PM
Well, I suppose its something I'm just going to have to brew on for awhile. I've no set solution yet.

Basic ideas I've had to try and deal with it is to create something similar to macros for characters, in the fact that you'd have set strategies that your NPC party would follow for certain situations, no matter what. You would basically print out basic character sheets for them, not worrying about moral traits, and such;  just equipment that your character doesn't use or passes down to your teammates. They would basically be there only to back your character up by providing extra damage, buffs, or battlefield control.

I figure, basic strategies they would follow...   ATTACK MY TARGET;  SPREAD OUT CONTROL;  BACK ME UP;  etc., etc.,  but how to keep players from fully utilizing them as their own personal mule/slave/human shield.   :[

Title: Re: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: leodegrance on February 09, 2010, 01:46:27 AM
but how to keep players from fully utilizing them as their own personal mule/slave/human shield.   :[

You said it. Moral.
If you use your comrades as meatshield, you suffer "moral" damage. Let's say that each time one of your teammates get seriously hurted/die, you get some degree of damage on your moral attribute and you cannot gain another one until your "reputation" is back to "n".

Title: Re: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: Callan S. on February 09, 2010, 03:17:43 AM
Does the game have a win condition? Even one defined by a player after some amount of play, like "Castles are awesome, my win condition is my character owning a castle!" (or even character generated "I want to bed the queen! that's my win condition!").

The difficulty of playing multiple characters would seem a plus in terms of gamism, because it's difficulty.

But if gameplay is going nowhere in terms of the W word, then it's just more bookwork to go nowhere and meander about.

But that problem doesn't really come from multiple character play.

Title: Re: [mEL] Inital Post, Gamist Questions
Post by: Warrior Monk on February 09, 2010, 12:29:32 PM
I'd say system has to focus on playing as a group instead of playing as one character with followers, like any computer RPG where you control several characters. Anyway, if a player chooses to use any character of their group as a meatshield I think it's ok as long as it's roleplayed as "one of the team has the habit to endanger his life for the sake of the group" Of course, the moral deal would be important, for that character should have to be really motivated to act like that.

There's an mmorpg called Atlantica Online, where your main character hires mercenaries to fight along with him. Game states that those mercenaries have the same abilities as the main character except the special moves. Hope this helps...