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Author Topic: Steam achievements  (Read 3819 times)

YK_81

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #30 on: April 06, 2021, 11:45:52 am »

Now, admittedly I forget how steam achievements work, but I do share some of the concerns of other people in this thread, that making achievements for losing would encourage people to lose the game, now, if you can't see what the achievements are until you achieve them, I don't see this being a problem, you'd accidentally lose a fort, and get an achievement that you didn't know existed. Basically what i'm saying is that if you can see there's an locked achievement for losing your fort to a goblin invasion, or what have you, you'll try to lose your fort to a goblin invasion. Now if you can't see that, when you lose a fort to a goblin invasion, you are pleasantly surprised when you get an achievement.
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NW_Kohaku

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #31 on: April 06, 2021, 09:20:51 pm »

it's completely forgetting that Adventurer Mode exists at all. 

You say this as though adventurer mode doesn't also end in death.  Just because a specific poster who plays fortress mode is most familiar with the varied ways fortresses collapse doesn't meant he principle can't be applied to adventurers.  Admittedly applying it to legends mode is harder, but I'm not really sure legends mode needs achievements. 

My point isn't that you can't make a "die for an achievement" achievement, but that it's not being considered at all.  All of these suggestions are about losing a fort.  My whole argument is that the suggestions are too narrowly focused upon one meme aspect of the game that people want to pretend as though it's all the game exists to do.
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Personally, I like [DF] because after climbing the damned learning cliff, I'm too elitist to consider not liking it.
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NW_Kohaku

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #32 on: April 06, 2021, 09:33:10 pm »

Now, admittedly I forget how steam achievements work, but I do share some of the concerns of other people in this thread, that making achievements for losing would encourage people to lose the game, now, if you can't see what the achievements are until you achieve them, I don't see this being a problem, you'd accidentally lose a fort, and get an achievement that you didn't know existed. Basically what i'm saying is that if you can see there's an locked achievement for losing your fort to a goblin invasion, or what have you, you'll try to lose your fort to a goblin invasion. Now if you can't see that, when you lose a fort to a goblin invasion, you are pleasantly surprised when you get an achievement.

You can make hidden achievements, but these are generally stupid.

The way they're intended to be awarded is that they are named in ways that are spoilers for linear plot-driven games so you can't miss them if you play the game, and they're just hidden to avoid spoiling the plot.  As achievements, though, they're kind of pointless since it's given to you for stuff you'd do, anyway.

However, in a sandbox game, achievements, as previously mentioned, are able to provide an incentive to the player to do something they wouldn't normally do in order to see some new aspect of the game.  (This is what Toady referenced as being like an "advanced tutorial".)  So... how does it encourage a player to do new things to get an achievement when they don't know the achievement exists?  (Well, they probably will because it will go up on the wiki and anyone who cares about achievements will look up a guide about how to get them all efficiently, but at that point it still invalidates the point of having a hidden achievement.)  The sort of person who'd be surprised that they got a hidden achievement, then, is the kind of person who wouldn't care whether they got an achievement or not... and why bother making achievements for them?
« Last Edit: April 06, 2021, 09:35:23 pm by NW_Kohaku »
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Personally, I like [DF] because after climbing the damned learning cliff, I'm too elitist to consider not liking it.
"And no Frankenstein-esque body part stitching?"
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YK_81

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #33 on: April 08, 2021, 11:47:30 am »

Now, admittedly I forget how steam achievements work, but I do share some of the concerns of other people in this thread, that making achievements for losing would encourage people to lose the game, now, if you can't see what the achievements are until you achieve them, I don't see this being a problem, you'd accidentally lose a fort, and get an achievement that you didn't know existed. Basically what i'm saying is that if you can see there's an locked achievement for losing your fort to a goblin invasion, or what have you, you'll try to lose your fort to a goblin invasion. Now if you can't see that, when you lose a fort to a goblin invasion, you are pleasantly surprised when you get an achievement.

You can make hidden achievements, but these are generally stupid.

The way they're intended to be awarded is that they are named in ways that are spoilers for linear plot-driven games so you can't miss them if you play the game, and they're just hidden to avoid spoiling the plot.  As achievements, though, they're kind of pointless since it's given to you for stuff you'd do, anyway.

However, in a sandbox game, achievements, as previously mentioned, are able to provide an incentive to the player to do something they wouldn't normally do in order to see some new aspect of the game.  (This is what Toady referenced as being like an "advanced tutorial".)  So... how does it encourage a player to do new things to get an achievement when they don't know the achievement exists?  (Well, they probably will because it will go up on the wiki and anyone who cares about achievements will look up a guide about how to get them all efficiently, but at that point it still invalidates the point of having a hidden achievement.)  The sort of person who'd be surprised that they got a hidden achievement, then, is the kind of person who wouldn't care whether they got an achievement or not... and why bother making achievements for them?

I understand your concern on that, "Why add a feature if it's useless", which I totally agree on. However, the idea here was using advancements in a creative way and, not reward, but ease the "Pain" of losing a fortress. The Steam release of DF will undoubtedly attract many new players, most of these players will not be achievement hunters, and if they are, it's their choice to make and destroy fortresses in interesting ways to gain achievements. By offering hidden achievements for losing a fortress in unique ways, it introduces the dynamic of "Losing is fun", important given that the new players will lose their fortress, the unforgiving nature of which is different from other similar games. Having them hidden prevents the players from trying to seek them out, and on the wiki you can have them marked as spoilers like on the HFS.
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Inarius

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #34 on: April 12, 2021, 03:56:19 am »

Well i think that achievements can be used in many ways.
One level is, for sure, helping the player to learn the game (a.k.a : some sort of tutorial). Maybe the other achievements should only appear after you have completed all of these ?

A second level is here to  try to help the player to understand the spirit of dwarf fortress, like loosing in many ways and enjoy it. In my opinion they must be hidden achievements. Like "what, i have an achievement for loosing the fortress by drowning everybody ?" or "dying by digging too far", or "dying from hunger" or zombies, or Mega beast, or goblins, or tantrum spiral, well, you can do a lot of achievements. But they should be hidden because it wouldn't be fun if they weren't. You don't do this on purpose but when it happens the game is here to tell you it's normal, and that it's part of what is enjoyable.

A third level is here to medium achievements things people like me could do. Encourage the player to explore the diversity of the game, what you "can" do after you have mastered the basics and the survival part. A Railroad, a tower, some pumps, a mill, etc...and/or trying to do bigger projets.

And after that, okay a fourth level or really complicated things that only very experienced players can do.
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Mr_Crabman

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #35 on: April 12, 2021, 06:05:01 am »

As far as "losing is fun" achievements go, I get the motivation for them, but I still think these should be very limited; 1 for adventure mode, 1 for fortress mode, and maybe a couple of "fun" ones that may also qualify as challenges (for example, lose a fort within a day of embarking), and maybe another couple to do with reclaiming a fortress that was retired or ruined. Maybe also one for losing a certain number of forts (not from specific causes, just *a specific number of them*, and no more than 10).

But beyond that, I agree with the arguments made about avoiding having a "checklist" of ways to lose, and I don't think making them hidden is a good answer to this.

Achievements should by and large fall into the categories of "diverse gameplay" achievements (ie encouraging trying out mechanics), "first time" achievements which are the likes of your first werebeast, first discovery of candy, first siege etc (ie things that "happen" to you while playing, not things you accomplish), and "challenge" achievements, like starting an embark and living for several years without harming any trees or using non grown wood, or that "vegan fortress" someone mentioned above, or having a dwarf born in the fort die of old age.
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Starver

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #36 on: April 12, 2021, 08:04:22 am »

Well i think that achievements can be used in many ways.
One level is, for sure, helping the player to learn the game (a.k.a : some sort of tutorial). Maybe the other achievements should only appear after you have completed all of these ?
To answer that question: Probably not.

It's not quite being railroaded through the tutorial, before you can do anything, but an experienced player may find it annoying (frexample) to have to do the "...and this is how you chop down a tree" thing before she can get stuck into her advanced no-wood gameplan. Or that if she does, there's no chance of getting what would otherwise be due awards.

Whether or not there's a 'wood-free' achievement, which there needn't be if it's just a personal aim to do it that way. And, yes, you could start up a 'sacrificial' fort to do-all-the-demo on, but that is as much of a sticking point as someone who has countless hours of experience on the non-Steam free release then decides to pick up the Steam one and Lets Play (or even privately) with the premium resources and get straight stuck into the advanced game with all the (over)confidence you'd expect.

TL;DR; ...I don't think forcing Tutorials/restricting non-tutorials is good. Heavy hints impatient of n00bs can ignore yet not entirely fail to notice, yes, but still let it be balanced as a choice. (And then everyone can still also get surprised if they trigger "You're A Classic: Every one of the five+ statues in this room is masterwork and made of marble", which could be a hidden easter-eggy one.)
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YK_81

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #37 on: April 15, 2021, 08:23:28 am »

As far as "losing is fun" achievements go, I get the motivation for them, but I still think these should be very limited; 1 for adventure mode, 1 for fortress mode, and maybe a couple of "fun" ones that may also qualify as challenges (for example, lose a fort within a day of embarking), and maybe another couple to do with reclaiming a fortress that was retired or ruined. Maybe also one for losing a certain number of forts (not from specific causes, just *a specific number of them*, and no more than 10).

But beyond that, I agree with the arguments made about avoiding having a "checklist" of ways to lose, and I don't think making them hidden is a good answer to this.

Achievements should by and large fall into the categories of "diverse gameplay" achievements (ie encouraging trying out mechanics), "first time" achievements which are the likes of your first werebeast, first discovery of candy, first siege etc (ie things that "happen" to you while playing, not things you accomplish), and "challenge" achievements, like starting an embark and living for several years without harming any trees or using non grown wood, or that "vegan fortress" someone mentioned above, or having a dwarf born in the fort die of old age.

I really like the idea of making the "Losing is fun" achievements hard to get.
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Atarlost

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #38 on: April 16, 2021, 07:01:44 pm »

The only real sticking point is to identify the cause of the loss.  For adventure mode this is easier.  If an adventurer bleeds to death after fighting a forest titan it's fair to call the forest titan the cause of death.  Same if the cause of death is a syndrome from one.  You can easily have achievements like "Die to a forgotten beast" or "starve" but for forts it's harder because forts actually lost to violence will often have some survivors hiding without food or water.  Similarly in a fortress lost to tantrum spiral the last dwarf standing probably dies of starvation or thirst or the fortress is abandoned as hopeless because there are no migrants but isn't actually dead.  A werebeast plague may leave the fort unplayable due to building destruction without actually killing off all the citizens unless the fort registers as lost when all citizens are transformed. 

Ironically, FPS death might be one of the easiest to ID.  Retire a fort that has spent more than a minute consecutively running at below 2 FPS (or whatever threshold is considered appropriate). 
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NW_Kohaku

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Re: Steam achievements
« Reply #39 on: April 18, 2021, 10:34:56 pm »

The only real sticking point is to identify the cause of the loss.  For adventure mode this is easier.  If an adventurer bleeds to death after fighting a forest titan it's fair to call the forest titan the cause of death.  Same if the cause of death is a syndrome from one.  You can easily have achievements like "Die to a forgotten beast" or "starve" but for forts it's harder because forts actually lost to violence will often have some survivors hiding without food or water.  Similarly in a fortress lost to tantrum spiral the last dwarf standing probably dies of starvation or thirst or the fortress is abandoned as hopeless because there are no migrants but isn't actually dead.  A werebeast plague may leave the fort unplayable due to building destruction without actually killing off all the citizens unless the fort registers as lost when all citizens are transformed. 

Ironically, FPS death might be one of the easiest to ID.  Retire a fort that has spent more than a minute consecutively running at below 2 FPS (or whatever threshold is considered appropriate).

Except it's not always easy to identify cause of death like that.  Let's say an adventurer was hit by three different creatures - a bear, a rabbit, and that forest titan.  The forest titan's attack did more bleeding damage, but it alone wasn't enough to kill the adventurer, they were mending their wounds when the bear and rabbit attacked, and the bear was largely responsible for the adventurer losing the fight due to distracting the adventurer, but several skillful rabbit bites put the adventurer past the pain threshold and caused fainting.

Then, you have to consider tracking blood loss over periods of time long enough that an adventurer partially recovers.  Let's say an adventurer loses 50% of their blood in one fight, then has recovered up to 75% of their blood by the next fight, loses 40% of their blood (down to 35%), then recovers another 20% (to 55%) before taking 30% blood loss to one creature, then getting immediately into a fight with another creature and losing 25% blood, down to 0% and dying.  The last creature drew the least blood, and the first creature drew the most, but if the player character had time to recover most of the blood lost, does that still count?

Then, let's say a forgotten beast inflicted a syndrome that didn't kill the adventurer right away, but the syndrome crippled them and they then were killed by a killer rabbit waiting in the bushes.  Obviously, the rabbit was the one that did all the actual blood loss leading to death, even if it never would have had a chance without the syndrome gradually knocking the adventurer out.

Again, the problem is that there's a hundred edge cases you can splice in a game like Dwarf Fortress.  This is also why things like determining blame in an "Unfortunate Accident" and punishing dwarves is so hard... or for that matter, allowing the game to determine the difference between an "Unfortunate Accident" and an unfortunate accident that just happened to get a noble.  That kind of intentionality is all in the player's mind, and players filling in the game's systems with their own interpretations to create a story is exactly what makes DF so compelling.
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Personally, I like [DF] because after climbing the damned learning cliff, I'm too elitist to consider not liking it.
"And no Frankenstein-esque body part stitching?"
"Not yet"

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