Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Off topic discussions that don't fit in any other categories.
Dubba_D
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Dubba_D » Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:39 am

On the note of perks in Skyrim, they felt like little more than little bonuses that you never even needed when your Skill Value was more influential. Really, do what Requiem does, and make Perks more like milestones in a Skill. If you don't invest perks in, say, alchemy, you're going to fail at brewing ANY potion unless otherwise. No perks in heavy armor, steadily drain stamina when equipped unless otherwise. Oh, and about lockpicking, the most UTTERLY USELESS skill tree in the whole f***ing game?!?! No perks means you can't even open a novice lock. See what it does there? In fact, check out Requiem on the Nexus or watch Broduals' coverage of the mod.

If you're going to talk about classes, then that's a tricky subject, and a bit touchy on my side. While I understand how people have outright praised their removal in the vein of a homogenous character, where's the replay factor in that?!?! Seriously, at least make it like NV and make our replay value come from the decisions we make in the world, and don't give me that excuse for Imperial vs. Stormcloak. Oh what, that flag change that no living thing in Skyrim, a war-torn country, mind you, could give a $#!T about? Really, I've only wanted to play Skyrim about 10 times over, simply for the races. With Daggerfall, Morrowind, an Oblivion, for that matter, my replay value comes from only the limit of the class list, race list, birthsign (or more godly, Advantages and Disadvantages), or even CUSTOM CLASSES?!?!?! Consider that at least 56 times over and counting. Classes were immensely ripe with how you wanted to build your character and the best part is, you could yield as much as 45 skill levels in one or two skills the very moment you boot up the god damned game! Lending to the idea that your character has at least proven themselves a productive member of society before their arbitrary metaphysical encounter with the imperial dungeon (or a cave... :| )

Let's really just move away from classes and talk about attributes.

Like I said before, make them more involving like Daggerfall, if not, more so. Attributes like Strength and Intelligence need to be reflected on your character. Such perks to attributes include:

Strength
Door bashing threshold; 33=Novice lock, 66=Apprentice lock, 99=Journeyman lock, but no higher.
Melee weapon modifier between 25% - 175% potential.
Encumberance Modifier 3 points per Strength point (minus Racial Input)
Threshold when reproising (IDK how to spell it) an enemy hit with a shield/Weapon
Using physics to lift heavier objects
Offset your mass to what is worn (see Requiem and Mass Effect system)

Intelligence
Size of Magicka Pool
Finding more topics to discuss when in conversation
Ability to find hidden passages where no one else could find them
Encumberance Modifier 1 point per Intelligence (minus Racial Input)

These benefits could be covered by several attributes so you can enjoy said benefits, but one attribute may offer more than the others.

Wish I could write more, but I wanna an ES game now and my fingers hurt. :cry:
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Special K
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Special K » Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:13 am

I'm hoping for an Elder Scrolls in which advanced technology becomes a major focus. Hundreds of years have come and gone in a world filled with magic and diverse races, and yet everyone is still living the same pseudo-medieval lifestyle with the same pseudo-medieval technology. More troubling, it seems that in some areas the people of Tamriel seem to be suffering from devolution. Take levitation, for example. The magically inclined of Tamriel were once able to frolic without a care in the world amongst the birds and cliff-racers. Did the mages of Tamriel somehow manage to loose every instructive text on the methodology of floating about between Morrowind and Oblivion?

I can see HUGE potential in the sector of magic-enhanced technology in the Elder Scrolls. I'm not just talking about new item enchantments or offensive spells: I'm talking flying machines, under-water cities and exploration, magic-enhanced races, weapons, the whole bit. In my mind, this would almost be "steampunk," but with an Elder Scrolls flavor. "Magicpunk" might be a better term; think dwemer technology expounded upon and influenced by the culture of other races.
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HoonDing
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby HoonDing » Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:50 am

I agree on a few things, but I think you're understating the value of perks in vanilla Skyrim. Among other things, one of the differences between a fully perked out weapon tree and an empty one is twice the amount of damage. Of course, you can make up that difference with enchanting, and I'm not sure how I feel about it, but there's a marked difference between skills you put perks into and skills you don't. I understand the sentiment that unperked skills should straight up suck instead of just being okay compared to great, and I've checked out Requiem, but I've honestly never felt like using any of the huge Skyrim overhauls.

My sentiment is that the perks are your class. Instead of picking major and minor skills at the start of the game, you invest perks in the skills you want to use as you go along and build your character. You can spread yourself thin among many skills, or focus in on just a few skills and be great at those. At least, in theory; I hope the next game develops the perk system more so that it is more limiting. Adding more skills would help. And hopefully there's be a nice balance between "unperked skills f***ing suck and you'll die instantly" to "unperked skills are mostly okay but not nearly as good".

On the subject of adding more skills:

spears spears spears spears spears spears spears

Also, I honestly think they should do away with lockpicking as a skill, considering it's never not been one of the most useless skills in any of the games. Instead of trying to make it useful by getting rid of Open spells and lock-bashing (and the Skeleton Key), just give up and put it on the same level; add different ranks of lockpicks as in Morrowind, bring back Open and bashing, and maybe add a few relevant perks.

On the flipside, I'm holding out for some new skills. An Athletics skill that encompasses Acrobatics, Hand-to-Hand, Running, and maybe even a return of Climbing, would be cool, although I'm against the concept of a skill leveling up by jumping; bunny-hopping everywhere is one of the dumbest behaviors I've ever seen in a video game and I don't want to encourage it.

Special K wrote:I'm hoping for an Elder Scrolls in which advanced technology becomes a major focus. Hundreds of years have come and gone in a world filled with magic and diverse races, and yet everyone is still living the same pseudo-medieval lifestyle with the same pseudo-medieval technology. More troubling, it seems that in some areas the people of Tamriel seem to be suffering from devolution. Take levitation, for example. The magically inclined of Tamriel were once able to frolic without a care in the world amongst the birds and cliff-racers. Did the mages of Tamriel somehow manage to loose every instructive text on the methodology of floating about between Morrowind and Oblivion?

I can see HUGE potential in the sector of magic-enhanced technology in the Elder Scrolls. I'm not just talking about new item enchantments or offensive spells: I'm talking flying machines, under-water cities and exploration, magic-enhanced races, weapons, the whole bit. In my mind, this would almost be "steampunk," but with an Elder Scrolls flavor. "Magicpunk" might be a better term; think dwemer technology expounded upon and influenced by the culture of other races.


I'm mostly opposed to these kinds of technological advancements, but this is too subjective to even argue. I will say, things like Levitation still exist in the Elder Scrolls universe (in-game books still reference these things), they're just unplayable for gameplay reasons, and sort of quietly ignored. There were no events that caused the universal knowledge of things like levitation and spell-making to disappear. Admittedly, the removal of the Mysticism school of magic has caused, at best, some inconsistencies. At least there wasn't that much established lore behind Thaumaturgy.
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Dubba_D » Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:22 pm

Ok, I lost everything in my original post, so I'll make this quick

Make Unarmed its own separate skill, and add new weapons for that skill like battle gauntlets, claws, knuckle-wear, etc.

Don't remove lockpicking...I mean, really. Set limits to the other forms, like lock bashing up to 50, open up to 75, and lockpick can open 100.

Return lock levels.

The jump to magitek (I'll call it Mystech, because it's a good play on) may have to wait, but I'd love to get this medieval stasis out of the way once we've seen everything.

More to come, maybe. HoonDing, I did send you a PM concerning something on the forums...
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Gez » Sat Aug 23, 2014 12:58 am

Skyrim's perks are more than just a percent bonus increase on damage dealt. Take the archery perks, they include sniping and paralyzing your target. Sneak perks lets you ignore some traps. Pickpocket perks increase your inventory space. Armor perks negate the armor's weight. Magic perks lower spell costs. Crafting perks are mandatory to craft higher end items.
Dubba_D
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Dubba_D » Sat Aug 23, 2014 5:48 am

Gez wrote:Skyrim's perks are more than just a percent bonus increase on damage dealt. Take the archery perks, they include sniping and paralyzing your target. Sneak perks lets you ignore some traps. Pickpocket perks increase your inventory space. Armor perks negate the armor's weight. Magic perks lower spell costs. Crafting perks are mandatory to craft higher end items.


Well, I guess not ALL of them, but I still believe most of them where.

Stealth in Skyrim was sooooooooooo overpowered, you could wear daedric armor, the heaviest armor in the whole game, and still assassinate the emperor.

I'll let Archery slide just a bit, but even sniping was pointless like it was in Oblivion, since I can always just align my arrow for the desired trajectory.

Magic was just, so lacking. Raising your skill could just as well lower your spell cost, albeit by a small amount, but why not your spell power instead? Perks could've been more relevant if only they could lower your spell cost, and a few more things, like unlock new spells for your research, and better offsets when your equipping a lot of heavy stuff.

Yes, crafting perks were used to unlock new gear to craft, but what about Alchemy, or Enchanting? Glitch abuse aside, there's just...no real incentive to make your own potions other than XP and ingredient effects, or do I just disenchant my gear for free XP and effects. But not at one point did I ever bother to put a perk in those trees because your potions were no match for later-game ones, nor did crafting enchanted gear really give you an edge when you could just improve your weapons to do godly amounts of damage.

So I'll say that some of the perks merit value, if only for the pure sake of power-play and not off real skill improvement. Everything else, at least to me, feels and is just fodder.
Dubba_D
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Dubba_D » Thu Aug 28, 2014 6:19 pm

Hmmm...yes, well...

While I've had time to contemplate, it does seem that an attribute system MAY be undermined by the value of perks. But I still think there should be more than just "Health, Magicka, Stamina increase", and perhaps a Derived Attribute system may take this place.

For example, magicka is the combination of your intelligence and willpower, and determines the size of your mana pool and your resistance to magic. Health is the measure of your raw physical power as well as your endurance, and stamina may encompass Agility and Speed.

I'm still partial to the older attribute system, don't get me wrong. But I also think the reason they were dropped was due in part to the perk system. Either way, Derived Attribute would be completely favorable compared to...Skyrim's system. :mrgreen:
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HoonDing
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby HoonDing » Fri Aug 29, 2014 9:51 pm

I think attributes were dropped just as an overall consolidation of skills and everything. On the one hand, the derived attributes (health, magicka, stamina, regen for each of them, and carry weight) are much more tangible and easy to modify with enchantments and perks. On the other, attributes add another level of character customization that admittedly feels nice.

Here's a thought experiment: Strength covers Stamina and Carry Weight. Intelligence covers max Magicka. Willpower governs magicka regen. Agility covers stamina regen. Endurance governs health and health regen. These are all of the "attributes" in Skyrim, and "adding" them is as simple as going into the Creation Kit and renaming any magic effects that modify them. The remaining attributes are a bit harder to just tie-in, though.

Speed can easily get ridiculous; too low and we've got "new character in Morrowind wearing Heavy Armor" issues, too high and it just gets silly. But if it doesn't have that much an effect, it might as well not even be present. Perhaps a marginal effect on movement speed and a slightly-less marginal effect on the equipment penalties to speed. Personality is straight-up redundant with how Skyrim handles Speech; I'm not sure how to include it without taking anything away from Speech, or if it's even necessary with speech. Maybe a higher personality can open up additional dialogue topics? Luck is easy; any situation where chance is involved is modified based on luck, and throw in a little extra love for loot, too.

As for skills themselves, if Bethesda's going to consolidate skills and add a perk tree for each skill, my question is, "what perk trees do I want to see?" as opposed to "what skills should the game have?" If we're talking about priorities, I'd rather see a perk tree that covers running, jumping, swimming, (climbing?), and hand-to-hand over perk trees for Lockpicking or Pickpocket. But unless Bethesda takes the "all skills should have equal value" path (which is ridiculous, since some skills will always be more important than others), there's no reason not to keep perk trees for the "lesser" skills.

Gameplay will be the hardest thing to predict with how Bethesda likes to "start over" every game. Retrospectively (and obviously), it seems like a lot of Bethesda's DLC and expansions have foreshadowed a scant few improvements we see more fully developed in the next games. Judging from the DLC for Skyrim, the first thing I'm looking forward to are better boss battles; the final showdowns for Dawnguard and Dragonborn were both way better fights than Alduin.

I don't think we'll enjoy the resplendent house-building of Hearthfire, but maybe we'll see increased functionality for followers (putting them in different roles, like stewards), and I definitely hope the homes of the next game come with Hearthfire style gardens and trophy stands.

There have always been engine issues with moving objects and moving the player around on them, like elevators, swinging platforms, or spinning gears (the last of which are found in a Dwarven Ruin in Dragonborn); hopefully, now that they've started incorporating these elements into level design, they'll fix those issues and start using them a lot more. Fun!

Another little note on Hammerfell: Hammerfell was originally named Volenfell, when the chieftain of the Rourken Clan of Dwemer threw his hammer Volendrung west and settled where it landed, which turned out to be in the Alik'r Desert. What I'm getting at is, I'm pretty sure I know where we'll be going for Malacath's Daedric quest in Hammerfell.
Dubba_D
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby Dubba_D » Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:20 pm

On the note of "Some skills will always be more important than others"...Does it always have to be like that? Does a role-playing game predominantly need the combat?

Combat skills, to every extend, are vital skills when dealing with enemies, but usually they are either found by you or you provoke them in a specific way (i.e. stole something, get hunted by a bounty hunter or a hired thug). But what if you wanted to role-play a reluctant hero, or a simple coward? At what point do combat skills become a primary focus for these playthrough's? I think the main reason why combat is such a dominant force in ES, and many other RPG's is perhaps due to the fact that it's much easier to portray violence as a less-gamey mechanic than, say, social interaction. It's also more engaging to find a conflict that feels direct and earthly than an internal one, or at least more exiting.

I'm not quite sure why, but to make a long post short: Combat is essentially a majority of every major TES game, and the solution, mayhap, is to introduce more pacifist methods. In regards to lockpicking or pickpocketing, if you wanted to just infiltrate an interior without bloodshed, perhaps to steal from a bandit outfit, or a guard house, they could be more valuable, and take in consideration, the Thieves Guild and the Dark Brotherhood in Oblivion. You could directly confront your target, or you could fight your way to the prize. But you were rewarded for using indirect means to kill, or stealing without bloodshed. You were rewarded for being a Thief, or a cunning assassin, not some lowly marauder or barbarian. Yet the player could still make either playstyle a viable option when in the Guild. This...is player choice, and the player can choose to be a pacifist, s/he could choose to be a fighter. Seemingly redundant skills are vital tools to those who know how to use them, and we shouldn't take that away from the player's tool-belt.

But I do see that you mean the perk trees, and not the skill itself. Well, my question is "why so many perks for Skill X"? Really, you would probably need only 4-5 perks for lockpicking, and same for pickpocketing. Make perk trees just as sensible as their respective perks. That's primarily the point I make with my last post, in regards to redundant perks. There's really no need for so many perks for, what, lockpicking? Maybe make the perks involve an ability to pick certain level locks, with only a few bonuses.
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HoonDing
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Re: Let's speculate on the next TES game, because we can.

Postby HoonDing » Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:28 pm

On the note of "Some skills will always be more important than others"...Does it always have to be like that? Does a role-playing game predominantly need the combat?


Methinks a better question would be, do we want all of the skills to have equal value? I'm not sure that I do: part of the fun of playing these games is that different classes face a different set of challenges, and some classes have it harder than others. All skills should be useful, yes, but it's totally okay for some skills to be more useful than others. A huge complaint about the magic in Skyrim was that it was a lot harder to play as a pure mage, compared to a warrior or thief; and yes, it's more challenging, but it's still damn fun and rewarding. Stealth is comparatively really easy, but it's still really well developed and fun. This is completely opposite, say, Morrowind, where magic is incredibly useful and stealth isn't really that well developed at all.

Non-violent alternatives to quests would be wonderful, where applicable. I don't think accommodating a pure pacifist playthrough is desirable; the scope of a TES game is entirely too broad, and it would end up restricting the design. The Dark Brotherhood is 100% about killing, and then there's the question of killing creatures, or Daedra, or Undead, or the final boss of the main quest, etc. A lot of role-play in Elder Scrolls games is defined rather simply by choosing which quests to actually do; there wouldn't be "craven coward" choices for Fighters Guild quests, a craven coward simply wouldn't join the Fighters Guild. I'd say that, if nothing else, the main quest should have plenty of branching paths and alternatives to be completed by most characters. Like Daggerfall's main quest, except I doubt we'll have any choice in how it ends; they have to maintain a timeline, and tricks like the Warp in the West really only work the first time.

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