These are various things that I just wrote down as they came to mind. Not written to be ready for publication, meaning some things might be unclear/misunderstandable. Sometimes the context is unmentioned (like the "Pets" section being about WoW "Hunter" class style pets).
Some of this is meant for Lost Worlds, where it will move in time.
- 1 Professions
- 2 PvP/griefing
- 3 On NPCs/AI/personality
- 4 Static Quests/Dialogues
- 5 Quests
- 6 "Proof" for bugs
- 7 Char Selection Screen
- 8 Chars per Account
- 9 Crafting
- 10 Hometowns
- 11 Character Names
- 12 "ninja buffing"
- 13 "Gathering"
- 14 Training
- 15 Badges/Awards (and a bit of History)
- 16 "Pets"
- 17 Travel
- 18 Walking through other Characters
- 19 Training Skills while Offline
- 20 Org Vaults
I want "pure" professions, but these must be very rich. And I want to be able to mix, so a figher can also be an engineer. But with different focus. One is an engineer who, if need be, can fight. Another is a fighter who knows a thing or two about engineering... so, overriding security systems might be something he can do, provided the sec sys is not too advanced.
I don't want limits. No safe-zones (mostly, but... well, very rare). No level limits (actually, I don't really want levels, but that's another topic).
So, (speaking AO levels) a level 200 can gank a level 1. What do I do to make this... not happen, or very, *very* much discouraged?
- Have noob zones heavily patrolled. But even those guards can be overcome, by an even higher char.
- have "do-gooders" (CoH: some of those legendary heroes... though only 8 survived the Rikti war (clever move in fact)) Some NPCs (GMs?) who, if word gets around that someones ganking lowbies/noobs, pop up outta nowhere (instant transportation very much a must-have, some sort of teleport/portal/warp stuff)
- honor bonus if you help people in dire need. Balanced with KSing (it should be in there, just for "realism" sake) So, a level 80 is ganking (respawn-camping even maybe) level 10s... you, level 200, gank him, you get a small reward. Hmm, see, an exploit right there. Make that reward very inconsequential (in *that* case, of the helper being a very much higher char). You, a level 90... then you get a nice honor(whatever) bonus.
- honor bonus for David/Goliath fights. You, level 40, see a level 100 attack a level 20, and jump to her aid. Even though that bastard wipes the floor with the both of you, you get a big reward for righteousness.
- "Cowardice" points. Anyone killing an opponent much lower than him/her (sliding scale... anyone who really doesn't stand a chance) get "coward" points. What do these do? The more coward points you have, the more likely NPCs will whisper/say stuff like "Look at <charname>, she's a real coward, only takes on people much weaker than her". The more coward points, the more likely, and the more openly NPCs will react to that. Some NPCs won't even talk to you, or talk (trade), but sneer right in your face. And, well, maybe you couldn't talk to some NPCs you need for some quests then.
Challenges: enough coward points could make some NPCs challenge you. Say, a city watch officer (think WoW's Stormwind guard named officers) suddenly blocks your way, and goes "How about trying someone your size?".
I'd like the social system do the work there.
NPCs need to be more dynamic. Especially named ones. So... guards have shifts. They live somewhere. They might have an actual family.
So, you'd get to see "changing of the guard". Maybe even actual ceremonies. See "Sgt Fred Jones" now, come back in two hours, see "Sgt Peter Michaels". Because Fred's off-duty now. Ask Sgt Michaels, and you might be able to ask about Sgt Jones, and get the info that... he's on vacation now. And you might meet off-duty officers as civilians!
Oh, and they (at least the named ones, the officers) should (would!) have personalities. Referring to the "cowardice" system above, some officers might be more inclined to make a cowards life hell than others.
None of that. At the very least, even for the same quest, we should have multiple different dialogue text selections. It's boring enough to do the same quest again on an alt (or, for repeatable quests, several times on the same char). Changing dialogue would make this a bit more tolerable.
But, well, I'd like to not have the quest for more than one time for the same person. Unless it's actually based in the game world history/current events. So... of course "deliver supplies to this outpost" could be done by more than one person. But not at the same time, probably not even more than once a day. (Or that output needs really lots of supplies. Well, how to rationalize that? And what if not enough people do that quest in a certain timespan? Oops...)
An actual living world. Where people don't work the same post 24/7, without any breaks (except for robots, of course :P) Where if something is urgently needed, it *is* urgently needed, and not getting the stuff there will have consequences.
(The Lost Worlds context, apparently)
As I said, no quests. Well... any quests can be done once, and only once. "Kill Andrew Andrews"... sure, but then Mr Andrews is dead. (Oh, of course... he isn't, not without permadeath). But then we can't kill him *twice*. So, that quest is over and done with.
So... any MMO(RP)G has these kinds of quests:
- "missions" (like what AO's mission terminals give you): cookie-cutter "kill N of these beasts". "Get this item from this dangerous place" "Bring this item to that place" etc
- Storylines: do this. *done* Oh, now we know what that has meant. Now do that. *done*. Well, time to report all that to <some NPC>. *done*. All this time you get moved through the gameworld.
- Epics: kill that very, very evil wizard. Or even "kill some legendary monster". Well... like all the named bosses in AO. Or, weirdest, kill the Beast in Pandemonium (last SL zone). How can you kill it multiple times? It's dead, right?
What would I have? Well, missions is good. But more, *much* more variety. And more depth. Think Splinter Cell, think Rainbow Six et al. Get some sketchy mission briefing, do the thing. But also simple "get me some supplies (meat)" stuff.
But storyline/epic... sure. Though, we do those only once. And then be done with it. Think of these more as big RP events. Where, after the event is done, it's done.
Storyline... hmm, if we could come up with a system (AI-like) that auto-generates storylines based on actual current in-game events... maybe influenced, tweaked (but not fully written) by staff? A sort of "auto-quest" module. Where you tell the system with as little work as possible, what you want, and a quest or series of quests is generated and put in the game.
Give players access to this too? Or, well, bind them in, somehow.
Epic... rare, very rare. And special. Think AO's assassination attempt on Phil Ross. Now... what if we'd so this with players, *on *only*... and not just "ARKs" (AGMs? Assistant GameMasters?), actual players. That assassin... say we'd actual put out a quest for that, very shady. Some high-enough assassin (whatever class/skill set that would be) takes the quest, then learns that it's Phil Ross who's to be shot. Game being tweaked (unknown to player(s)) so that the shot will only grace Ross... bingo. And then just let it play out.
"Proof" for bugs
For bugs, it's hard to prove them. So, why not have an in-game screenshot feature? No, not the classic screenshot, I mean a feature to make screenshots that *stay in-game*.
It just occured to me that... to counter exploiting of my proposed anti-PvP-ganking measures, one might hire players to prove that, say, X and Y are cooperating. To do that a player would have screenshots of X and Y talking, all friendly, (all the better if there was an accompanying "capture chat" ('listening device', in-game lingo) for those situations)
All that data stays in-game... the player doesn't take screenshots and sends them via normal, OOC email. Because that would make it too easy to photoshop evidence.
I had an idea similar to this (outlined in the specs (the spying section) for a space shooter adventure game I was/am working on with a friend (btw, it contains a few other ideas that could be copied here also)). The main difference is I think that no actual screen capture should be created, instead just a copy of the recorded game transaction, in some suitable format. That should take considerably less memory than a real screenshot, and should be possible to understand by NPC:s too, enabling you to e.g. have a mission where you follow a suspect and gather evidence of him acceppting missions from an opposing force, thus proving that he is loyal to them. --zzorn 01:04, 12 March 2006 (CET)
Different goals. Yours is in-game, mine is (mostly) out-of-game. Bug reporting, exploit reporting, anything you want to / have to report to an admin. Though the basic functionality could of course be used for both purposes I think. --Jae 01:55, 12 March 2006 (CET)
I see. Well, some games I've seen have had a /bug command, perhaps the timestamp of it and the information from which character it came could be used by server admins / programmers to look at the event log and find the described phenomena. --zzorn 01:59, 12 March 2006 (CET)
Char Selection Screen
In case there are multiple servers (as in "shards") I'd still just list all characters in one list (with a server name attached). Like SWG (even though they had "one char per server" anyway).
I'm thinking of a tabbed display, with one default tab. Other tabs can be player-configured (likely with some presets, like "create one tab for each server).
Chars per Account
No limit, since the load a player creates on the server (the important thing) is when the player logs on, regardless of how many chars the player has.
The rest of this thought is for the commercial space (like, charge for multiple logons, and charge per hour actually played), but that's not really relevant to WF (at this point).
Everything in game should also be craftable. Or, most anything. Like... in WoW, why can't I make bows? Or, rather, why isn't there any profession that can make bows?
Why does everyone in WoW (or whatever) start in the same place? Why not give the chars a "home" (selectable, with random as an option). That would mean... a house? A place to call home, a "oh I'm coming home" feeling (like, when Hämmerchen visited Ironforge again yesterday... and then went to Kharanos. Some nice feeling, somehow... would have been better if that was actually his "home" (Hämmerchen being my WoW dwarf paladin))
So, we could have settlements. Multiple. And you chose were to be born (or "random" (aka "I don't care"))
(In The Lost Worlds, there wouldn't be "homesteads". At first. Due to you being one of the original "human cargo" of your ship. Later, however...)
Moved bulk to LW, check there.
In my superhero game (yes, I'd also love to do "CoH done right" :P), people would select a hero name, and a "secret identity"/"alter ego" (usually, but not always. Androids, for example, won't have an alter ego. Some purely(?) human heroes wouldn't have one either, they're just who they are) Oh, some won't have a hero name, just a "human name". Frank Huge, for example :P
I noticed in WoW that you get no info on when someone ninja-buffed you. Hate it. Like AO's "XXX runs NNNN in your NCU" much better. That way, I know who to thank (or who to curse if I don't like getting the buff for whatever reason)
Oh, and one of the ideas from the AO forums is nice, about having a "no ninja-buffs" flag. Of course, WoW has no NCU, and thus no "max number of buffs". I think...
If we'd do some NCU thing (something similar, where buffs need space, and I like that idea lots), we should implement something of the kind. Some "no friendly buffs"/"no friendly buffs without asking"/"only buffs up to NNN NCU" (so I have MMM NCU free for my own buffs at all times). Maybe permissions (it's a sort of CPU/RAM thing, so why not), and allocations. Like "everyone can run <this nano program/this nano line>" or "XYZ can run any nano, no limits" and such.
I like WoW's TS (Trade Skill) system... with some caveats: every weapon should be tradeskillable (except for uniques... which should be, well, unique. *Really* unique. But I digress). Why can a blacksmith make swords, maces et al, but no Ãprofession can make bows? (When engineers can make guns!)
Gathering however is nice. More gatherables would be better, maybe even if *anyone* could gather... with some stuff being restricted to those being trained in that skill, or they being able to produce higher-qual stuff ("Mining"... anyone could beat a rock, but only mining-trained chars could gather high-qual ore (same rock, same char setup, same tools (hmm, maybe make it the tools, you need skill to use actual *good* mining tools), the skilled miner gets 150%-200% better quality ore (unskilled: ql30 ore, skilled 45-60, for example)
For some gatherings, you would need the actual profession skill... like, a miner could gather wood, but would only be able to detect good fire-making would (for smelting). Only an experienced/trained bow maker would be able to see the quality bow wood for what it is.
Another WoW-based example: gathering herbs: anyone could learn the very basics, even from a book from the public lib
(Yes, my libraries would not just be show, every book could be taken out and read... or something. Lots, and lots of work. Limit it somehow? In that game, maybe the library is damaged, and has thus lost most of its content (or it is inaccessible... so we can, over time, add stuff and say that "it is slowly being restored"))
Then he/she could got gather herbs... "oh, a silverleaf *gather*". Same ql system applies: a skilled herbalist would gather more/higher qual from the same plant than an unskilled char.
I like the "need training from NPC" (extended by "other chars with higher skills/experience"). Only I wouldn't make it a cap as such... don't like all aspects of WoW's system.
Complex. Like, inter-char training: not only a "trainer NPC" could train a char, but another char could too. Even across disciplines... or "Parts of their knowledge". Maybe give every char a "knowledge capacity max"...
For example (to use the above-sketched system), a bow maker could teach any char (who's not at their total knowledge cap) how good bow-making wood is different from other wood. Then that char could gather bow wood.
Any char could gather wood in this system... but he/she wouldn't *know* if it was good bow-making wood if they didn't have that skill!
Badges/Awards (and a bit of History)
Not sure about the topic, but...
I like CoH's badges. And I like the "find out about CoH's backstory" even more. Now, how to make this even *better*?
Let's give badges (the history badges) a bigger role. Let's let NPCs come up to your char and ask them for specific historical stuff (which you might even have to actually *answer* (multiple choice of course))
Or an historian comes up to you (while you are on some unrelated business) and asks you to find out about this and that. Since you are a noted history expert (badge "history expert")
All tied to certain badges.
Oh, and awards ceremonies. You get your badge right away, in game... but to make it visible to other players, (on your, uhm, "Ausgehuniform" (escapes me atm)) you have to attend a special ceremony. The higher the award, the fewer people will be there.
Yes, "outstanding healer" and such (I like that in CoH too... you get rewarded (pretty much double-intangibly, natch) for *healing*)
Generally, I prefer limitless. Like in WoW, a hunter should be able to have *lots* more than just 3 pets max. 10, 20... but, well:
Make it expensive. Not buying a stable place, but the renting. Put a pet into a stable at any time, nominal fee for registering it. But when you get pet "A" back out, you pay according to how long it was in the stable.
Maybe it would work kinda like pawning: put it in, pay a registration or something. Or, pay in advance, Ncreds per days (*real* time...)
If you pay for a week, you have to add creds in a week. If you don't, you... may have to pay double. Or something. "Late fees" as in the library.
So, a pet would cost 10S (WoW example). Per day. Put a pet in for a week, pay 70S. Pay double for every day you didn't pay in advance. So, if you get you pet out in two weeks, but forgot to renew in one, you pay 140S (70 for the extra week, doubled)
Oh, and you cannot put another pet in while you owe money. You'd go to the stable, and the local stablemaster would tell you "you owe 2G80S (one pet unpaid for two weeks, or 2 for a week, or any other combo). you could then only put in another pet (or even *get one out*!) after you paid up those 2G80S.
Just a quick note: I want spaceships. To travel from planet (server) to planet, you use ships... but not (just) the usual one-person space-sim affairs. Stuff like... think the Millenium Falcon scenes in SWG tutorial (escape from that spacestation you where held at in the very beginning))
Yes, with crew and stuff. Ergo, a "team". Yep, you need N people to ride specific vessels. The bigger, the more people. Would be crazy, and fun, and crazy fun (I think/hope, not having reached those features in SWG (which I think exist... or did they exist before NGE?)
Oooh... and be, well, sorta innovative: have small one-person affairs that can combine into larger structures? Woah, that would/could rock. Hook up with 2 others, and combine your engines to get a higher level engine, just for a single trip. Such stuff.
On-planet: I like WoW's gryphon routes. (Flight paths). But I also kinda like AO's Whom-Pahs. Don't like CoH's inter-zone transport (a tram from zone to zone? THROUGH Rikti-infested areas? While there is teleport technology? Stupid. Immersion-breaking. Not to mention the inter-zone highways. Which you, of course, can't travel... they work (as do the trams) like a teleport.
I like SWG's shuttle system.
So... well, intra-planetary transport would be depending on the planet, of course. (Speaking in a The Lost Worlds context) But teleport is likely. Ship-to-ship. Intra-ship. Ship-to-planet. Anywhere-to-anywhere, basically. Maybe some planets wouldn't have it. Maybe just at first, maybe never. (The high-grav planet... might have some strange, high-power radiation that makes it impossible. So, find some other means, dear settlers! evil grin (And find something for them to find, dear developers, painful grin ;)
Walking through other Characters
No. Prefer CoH... with lower min char distance, of course (that's an anti-cyb0r device, I'm sure).
People blocking you? People will move sooner or later? Griefers? Call the guards.
What about "spawn points", namely, after you exit a portal of some kind... in AO, when you step through a a Whom-Pah, every char ends up in the same spot. Or if you log in, someone might already occupy the place you spawn in.
Well... for example, teleports. (The Lost Worlds) You go to a teleport station, step into the sender booth (or one of them), and materialize in a receiver booth at your destination. And there a multiple receiver booths, so you spawn in a free one. Hmmm, and if you linger in the booth? You get bounced back to sender? Pushed out? What if each booth has some "pushed out" char in front of it already? Okay, so you push push...
Why not have idle people become sort-of NPCs? With customizable patterns of behavior. I mean... you don't stand there, you actually react to your environment, but in a scripted way.
So: if you go idle (afk) right after teleport (see above), then you just step out of the telebooth, and stand there, as if you were lost in thought. Someone wants to move past you? You (being an AFKNPC now) step away from the booths, maybe lean against some wall. Or sit down on a bench. Or... whatever.
That would be sweet! Put benches in all the spots this usually happens. Or... similar stuff that fits your world.
Training Skills while Offline
The EVE Online thing... you train skills even while offline (it's all time-based.... though you need months for the higher levels)
I kinda like that. But I'd make it "you have to be inactive", so... only idling online or being offline. The moment you move you interrupt learning.
The Lost Worlds: learning centers/labs. Where you go with a char, and stay for learning. Offline or on (with some other char), your learning char learns.
The vault would be a repository of items. Now, access: either "only through a logged org officer" (an officer, or just someone with access, needs to be online, and probably present, to give you the item). Or an org could choose to put an NPC in place.
This one's a bit more complicated. You'd contact that NPC (whichever way, comm channel, or actually "physically" going to your org's vault), and then a script would run to decide if you'd get the item you wanted. Or even which items you get to look at. Etc.
Meaning, an org could be very hands-on, any vault transaction must run through an actual human being (a player), or transactions (some, all) could be run through an NPC. (Or a computer system... thinking The Lost Worlds, you could contact your org's equipment and blah blah system, and it would all be IC without a single NPC necessary)