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Author Topic: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)  (Read 336 times)

Truean

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Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« on: October 26, 2014, 11:24:24 am »

I would like to create an RPG Dwarf game on the forums. Doing so presents some process issues and I would like to make this process as easy as possible for myself as DM. THis is sort of a scratchsheet.

1.) DM Issues:
A.) Representing Terrain and Areas:
B.) Using Microsoft paint or hand drawing for ease of editing and universal availability.
C.) Indicating Elevation, Items, and perhaps basic artwork/function
D.) Shared through photobucket or easily DM controllable content system.
E.) Easily replicated and reusable tilessets to indicate grass, trees, bushes, snow, stone, etc.
F.) Design of Wilderness areas to have meaningful use.
G.) Ease of posting and preparation.
H.) Not getting bogged down in rules, because rules lawyers aren't fun.
I.) Note keeping (simple enough overall)


2.) Player Issues:
A.) Sense of meaning and reason to post
B.) Sense of ability to intelligently impact game
C.) Sense of seriousness/lack of trollololololing
D.) Posting Flexibility (what happens if you're not there)
E.) Sense of fairness (especially in the absence of a huge rule system).

 3.) Design Feature Issues:
A.) Possible player actions: Choices, even bad ones, can make a game worth it.
B.) NPC interaction with Players. While Players have choices, so do NPCs and those can impact the players. The world does not revolve around them.
C.) Handling player ability to impact the world. Updating maps and notes, having those changes be reacted to appropriately by NPCs and the world at large. Action. Reaction. Counteraction, etc.
D.) Tactical Deployment. Not always possible, but perhaps.
E.) Possibility of creating areas altered by players with forts, farms, businesses, homes etc.
F.) Allies and Enemies for and against the players.

Others as they are thought up.

This thread will be based upon various things I will be working through when designing a game for possible use on these boards. Helpful comments are appreciated.


« Last Edit: October 28, 2014, 03:37:50 pm by Truean »
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Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2014, 11:24:42 am »

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Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2014, 11:33:35 am »

I.) DM Issues
A.) Representing Terrain and Areas
C.) Indicating Elevation, Items, and perhaps basic artwork/function
F) Design of Wilderness areas to have meaningful use.

So, whatever type of game you have, where it happens matters. This post is primarily about the problem of easily representing where things are in an area and making that information useful/meaningful to all involved in game. There are social, political, economic, natural, and other aspects of terrain/areas. Those are incredibly important and we'll discuss those later.

When you look at many game settings, homebrew and professional alike, observe the worldmap or even area maps. Tell me what you see about a given land feature like a forest, or a mountain, or a hill or anything. It's just a spot on the map isn't it? Those little great areas that are pictures of trees, what can you tell me about the individual things in that forest? When the players or somebody would visit that area, what is where? Perhaps there may be little dots for cities or points of interest if there are any in there, but that's it.

I would like to make these map areas more meaningful, useful, and important for everybody. You don't have to use an intricate grid system like DF does in game (although that's impressive). You can however, keep additional notes about general areas and sub areas of a given feature. Division and specification are key here. What do I mean? Here is a possible example:


Let's use one of those green areas on your average map that has lots of little pictures of trees on it: a forest, as an example. If it is just "X Forest," then what content does that create for the game and all involved...? DM: "You're in X Forest." .... I'd like more than a four word description and one that's easy to read one that gives me more options. Wouldn't you?

Let's spruce up that forest, pun not intended. A forest is a living place in a fantasy game, and several things exist there. Starting with the actual terrain , We would look at what is around the forest first. Let's say there are foothills to the north that lead into mountains, steppes to the west and to the north of those mountains. Forests continue to the East and eventually become plains. To the south are marshes. Consider the way water would flow, clearly downhill from the mountains. Additionally, this will create non flat surfaces and features in the area (that will later be used by the inhabitants and visitors of the forest).

From there, the forest can probably be divided into several smaller areas, if nothing else based on geography like different sides of a hill or ridge system. Of course, later, once we add any inhabitants, territory claimants, or passers through, they can also create their own areas and you can sort of use those as boundaries as well. The divisions of a forest, for example, do not have to be on a square grid and would likely be based upon natural features like streams or hills, etc. If nothing else you can divide the forest based upon directions like north, south, east, west, central, higher, lower, etc.

Once you have various sub areas of the forest You can think about how that area may contain various features. Starting with natural ones (instead of political, economic, inhabitant or other created features, we can have a rich area that is so much more than a green treey splotch on your map to fill space. When you travel places you notice landmarks. Here those may include but are not limited to:

Fairly natural forest features
A clearing with scattered bushes (berries, useful economically later)
A small stream (Watering hole for prey animals)
Fallen trees (lumber and habitat area)
A gorge or depression in the terrain)
A hill, hills or ridges. (defensible terrain/difficulties in building/travel)
A spring (water source).
Exposed bedrock (Quarrying and possible mineral resources)
Game trails (making natural pathways through the area)
Dense foliage and underbrush (cover, possible to pass through but difficult, habitat etc)
Rocks and stones of significant size
Patches of rare plants
Animal lairs/caves
Water Features like lakes, waterfalls, rapids, aquifers etc.
Different types of trees, though largely decorative, might be economically valuable

Unnatural/created features
Economic structures: lumbermills, mines, tribal settlements (temporary or otherwise)
Shrines (abandoned or otherwise)
Settlements/Camps
Infrastructure (Roads, trials, aqueducts, canals/dredged waterways)
Trading posts
Economic resources (claimed or not)
Military bases

This is far from an exhaustive list. Once you have some features you need to place them within the forest and think about how they will interact with the area and inhabitants around them and far away from them.

Indicating where they are within a reason can be done via a locator dot or icon on a smaller sub region map. Additionally, it can be indicated in text by using cardinal directions or the O'Clock system (12 o clock being north. 6 being south, 3 being east, etc), relative to the center of the sub area. Additionally you can use "near, middle, and far" in relation to the center of the sub area.

Moreover, inhabitants have a tendency to claim territory. Perhaps the elves are just patrolling it once in a while, or a migratory group of whatever passes through it. Perhaps a tribe of something lives there. It's good to know their de factor boundaries, especially if you want to avoid them.

At some point, the Players might visit or pass through these areas and thus travel becomes an issue. Remember those items like dense foliage and elevation? That will impede travel. Roads could become a goal to build or maintain as they create easier travel (and possible ambush situations as well).

__________________________________
How does this all boil together for gameplay? Remember that short, boring sentence from before from the green, tree filled blob area without features that's there to fill up space? "You're in X Forest." Now you have more things to add to that, which will create interest, material to create content from.

Instead of "You're in X Forest," you get.

DM: "You're in the south eastern portion of the western part of X Forest between a fairly large area of dead trees, and a clearing with some oddly shaped bushes. You remember from your previous journey that Gathov Ogres inhabit the Northern part of X Forest and sometimes venture into the western, which is dangerous to you.... You remember passing through a small frontier settlement  in the western portion of the western X forest that is friendly to you. Bears tend to lair in the southern portion of western X forest and are a concern. Additionally Central X forest holds several areas of interest including  a hunting camp run by Y group. An outcast group of Dwarves inhabit a hill in Eastern X forest (you're not sure exactly where) and mine copper from an exposed outcropping) [a map to point at would make this easier]

Etc etc etc.

The first option gives the player four words and very little if anything to work with. 

The second option gives the player tons of stuff to work with. They can use a destination, perhaps one alligned with a quest or some goal. Once that's achieved, knowing if there are roads, or elevations, or dense foliage would also matter to the players travel options. Perhaps the road would be a good course, but maybe not. Maybe the Players are more interested in remaining hidden from potential dangers and thus the dense foliage, while slowing them down, provides more cover and less chance of attack (and even a chance to hunt game). That doesn't even get into tactical military applications of using terrain against opponents in a retreating battle etc.

Moreover, this detail feeds into content and choice generation. Those gathov Ogres... why are they a threat? DO they have a problem with ... dwarves or humans or are they just belegerent? Do they have a religion that demands sacrifices? Are they raiding for economic purposes? Are they in control of their own actions or being influenced by an outside force and if so who/where. Also how do all these things interact?

Now there is a benefit to all this and more information, but it can easily become bogged down. That's the issue. How do you put all of this dense information down in a map that is easy enough to share/draw/and perhaps alter? We'll get into that in a later post because this is already too long, but I'm guessing it involves tilesets, perhaps rudimentary wireframes if you wanna get fancy, or contour lines.

Questions to consider:

How would you relay this information to the player easily and understandably?
What techniques would you use to map out the information above like elevation, etc?
« Last Edit: October 26, 2014, 12:30:53 pm by Truean »
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Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2014, 08:28:18 pm »

I.) DM Issues
B.) Using Microsoft paint or hand drawing for ease of editing and universal availability.
D.) Shared through photobucket or easily DM controllable content system.
E.) Easily replicated and reusable tilessets to indicate grass, trees, bushes, snow, stone, etc.

At some point, all of the stuff for this imaginary world is going to really benefit from a map or a lot of maps. Microsoft paint is pretty universal, and surprisingly decent at editing if you know how to do it. The secret is using repeatable tiles that can overlap to form textures, sketch/skew, rotate/flip, various brush textures, area selecting, and layering. Now some of you might say that microsoft paint doesn't have a layering function. It doesn't have one built right in but you can do it and if you really wanna blend lines well, then that little spray paint brush is your best friend:


Note: This is just a demo.

This is an oversimplified version of things and it took me a little less than an hour to make. It shows how you can get some tilesets from just about any photo I think I got mine from some paint thing (they're textured). You can see the process I use by creating a coastline and also starting on some hilly terrain. You can see how I create the coastline I want by cutting out part of the large area grassland tile, and then overlaying that layer on the sand tile. This creates a border area between the sea and the grass for a beach. I then do the same thing with the sand tile, now a beach and carve out a coastline, then overlay it over the water tile. After that I clean up the borders a bit. This keeps your materials from looking blocky, like you plopped down tiles next to one another and provides a transition.

Hills and elevation are a bit trickier. The thing you wanna use there is the sketch/skew function and the resize to sort of tilt the tile you're using and create an incline. You put two together and then you can tilt THAT so the thing doesn't look like it's all straight lines. The problem there is that you end up with a straight "hilltop" or ridge, which sorta sucks and doesn't have that "organic" feel to it. The same idea we used with the beach/coast can be used here to give an organic feel. The problem you run into here (and that I didn't have time to fix tonight) is that the colors seem too similar along with the textures and there's no contrast. This can be gotten around by use of an implied wireframe, and shadowing, which I will have to demonstrate later. Basically the shadowing tries to take into account how some things might have more shaded areas and more well lit ones. It's a little hard but the same basic techiques are used. The hard part is darkening up your sample tile without changing too much else of it, or otherwise providing texture contrast. Wireframes are as simple as using white lines to draw contours in your image and then place that over another image, which will then fill in the space for the white lines (again to be demonstrated later).

The problem is that without a wireframe or shadowing, you have to really zoom in on the image to even tell there's something trying to indicate elevation, and it doesn't quite do the simple one shot easy to see job you want it to. More on fixing that later.

It's not perfect but it's a start. The real pain in the butt is creating a set of tools to use or a comprehensive pallet. It takes forever but once you have it, things get easier.


EDIT: Wireframes

The following is a very rudimentary wireframe. It takes away some of the realism, but helps define where certain borders are. In professional graphic arts, wireframes are used and covered up seamlessly if possible, but this isn't intended to be a finished product for sale. This is meant to show stuff.



If you leave the wireframe, I don't think it looks as good, but it shows information of exactly where the elevations and contours are at the expense of making them ridged. If you use them and then cover them up later, then they can be useful for adding certain effects like proper shadowing. Note that while I've achieved a sort of shadow effect by twisting (sketching and skewing) my original tile, this is not true shadowing, and I'm not sure if I care to put in true shadowing, because that gets a bit more complicated than "easy." The other problem with wireframes is that they are lines on your image, and I usually use lines to show things like borders, streams, etc. Also they don't show if this is an elevation or an indent/pit. I suppose it could be either and differentiating is hard.


Questions to consider:

I am currently using Photobucket to host images. What sites would you use. The content has to be easily controllable by me, and free if possible.
Given that the basic idea is to create reusable and alterable sprites and images, what constructive comments do you have?
Some layers are problematic, such as tree and ground cover, because they make it harder to see the elevations (more on that later) is there a way to get around this to show both elevation/topography and forest/groundcover?
What are your thoughts concerning wireframes for use in this type of thing?
« Last Edit: October 26, 2014, 09:21:12 pm by Truean »
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Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2014, 10:23:23 pm »

2.) Player Issues:
A.) Sense of meaning and reason to post
B.) Sense of ability to intelligently impact game
C.) Sense of seriousness/lack of trollololololing
D.) Posting Flexibility (what happens if you're not there)
E.) Sense of fairness (especially in the absence of a huge rule system).

So, taking a slight break from the map thing for a second, what would another person do in a game I would run like this one? Answer, quite a bit actually, but perhaps not in the usual sense of a forum game or RPG, due to the light rules focus.

Why would a potential player wanna post and keep posting? Answer, to build up a place in an imaginary world they would perhaps like to be in. They can gain virtual possessions, make virtual friends, change the world around them by building structures/alliances/enemies etc, and of course building up different skills/techniques. The focus is not on rules lawyering, and munchkining/minmaxing. While you may want to get better at a certain skill, the idea of getting a "+1" doesn't factor in here in a stiff sense. Any game would be more qualitative than quantitative, ideally.

With the right tools and skills (prior experiences) it would ideally be possible to alter the world or at least parts of it. This is a key element of the idea behind Dwarves in general and certainly DF (which is a different game of course, but look who I'm playing with potentially). With the right skills, one could build a fort for dwarves out of relevant materials and heavily customize it.

In effect, this would be accomplished mostly through text and perhaps some image files. Everything from personal possessions to buildings and parts of buildings can be given a text block or two for this purpose and this is one area that can be collaborative. Customizations would require the relevant skills or other people around with access to those skills and appropriate materials, as well as time. How much of each will depend on luck to a degree, just like in real life some things are easier and others are harder. Some things take more time than others.... Skill will effect all of these, as well circumstances, and actions of others around you.

Examples of things one may achieve include but are not limited to:

Friendships, relationships, alliances, animosity, etc with various groups and people.
Positions of power, influence, control and obligations
Material wealth as currency or goods
Economic influence through trade routes or production facilities and markets
Military rank and prowess.
Control or possession of land and places
Construction of buildings and alterations of areas
Goods and items
Etc etc etc.

All of this may only happen later on, as the game will probably start as an ISG (internet suggestion game). After some time, if players demonstrate they deserve an individual character, then they may get one by taking over an existing character, or perhaps being permitted to make their own. In this sense, the ISG portion of the game will be a trial to see who deserves a character by means of quality of posting, reliability of posting, and basically how good the player is deemed to be. This will also allow posting to continue when players are absent or unable to post and make it so the entire game doesn't have to wait on one person, other than perhaps the DM. In the event a player who has earned a character either can't post anymore or can't post for some time, that will be taken care of when it happens. I am inclined to say they become an NPC for some time and take the actions the character would take if possible.

In short, the idea would be to give people a possibility of escapism and some measure of reasonable influence (balanced by the rest of the world) over a place in their minds. Perhaps it would be nice to be a dwarf working their way up to be high ranking in a guild of craftsdwarves, and owning your own farm and lodging in one or more dwarf holds? Perhaps it would be more to the point of being a military oriented character (or both). Perhaps later on having followers would be a good idea, though in the beginning it is likely that you would be somebody else's follower.... Maybe you deal with X event by doing Y, or any number of options. Who knows.

Keep in mind, I am not going to be able to generate something like minecraft or fallout or something where it's a large scale release game with immense time, money and effort put into it. That's just not reasonable or even possible. However, it is possible to have a little escapism and a fun time.

Premade Characters:

For several reasons, I would probably start the game out with a premade dwarf character and perhaps let a few NPC's tag along. The players would initially ISG in suggestions for what the character would do, and perhaps suggest what the NPCs would do. Only serious requests would be considered, and serious requests with short, sweet, easy to understand explanations of why a character would do or not do something would be favored.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2014, 10:29:20 pm by Truean »
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Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2014, 01:55:45 pm »

I.) DM Issues
C.) Indicating Elevation, Items, and perhaps basic artwork/function

Unless you're comfortable with a very flat map, or some abstraction, elevation is a key problem in RPG artwork and mapping.

There are a couple of different ways to handle it. First you can do so in visually pleasing graphics, as indicated here  by the slanting tiles on the pallet. While this can look nice and can be infinitely customizable in theory, it has several major problems 1.) It takes forever to do. 2.) To really do it right you have to use shading a lighting methods which are a nightmare. 3.) A sense of scale or how big things are is next to impossible. 4.) You can forget all about anybody but the creator thinking about editing it. 5.) You will have occlusion problems with 3D or 2.5D (semi) isometric images, because while looking at the front of a hill, you can't see the other side (whereas from a top down view, you can see it all). Thus, a better method is desirable.

Top down topographical view can be pleasing enough and fairly familiar to those on this forum who play DF, which uses such a system as a sliced Z axis level. There are downsides to this method. It isn't as pretty; you have abstract some things about it; and it looks rather like the world is made of terraced steps with no slopes. Additionally, in order to indicate height between "Z levels" or topographical elevations well, you need to use a different color tileset, which looks odd.



So if you look above you'll see how I just made a crude layered example from scratch. I basically just searched something like "pictures of grass," and that's how I got the grass tile. I don't exactly remember, but I think the other one is like a ceramic tile or something. Same deal with the rocks, and that stuff. I just threw together the stuff and anyhow whatever. It's the same sort of layering method used to make the coastline we talked about earlier only on a larger scale and you can see how I repeatedly used the same large tiles to create a topographical terrain mapped island for an example. Here it's easy to see the elevations are going UP because it's an island and it wouldn't make any sense for that to be a depression or a pit with all that water around it would it? If it were not an island and instead were surrounded by other land it would be more complicated. Don't even get me started on things that have both hills and depressions in them, because it's difficult to tell which is which without some sort of standardized system.

Now, after that's done, you have a sort of item layer demonstrated by those farms in the lower left part of the island. Those are clearly exterior farms (as opposed to underground farms). That level is fairly straightforward, but still you need to twist them a bit to look like they fit on whatever area you've got. I also rotated things a bit so it wouldn't look all the same and boring.

From there you have the multiple Z level thing where you can look underground. This is a bit sloppy, because it's only for demonstration purposes. You can see the one with the stone area on the "top" layer only, is the underground part for that Z level, and those of you who play DF should get this. It's the same idea really for the picture below that. I know it's a little small this time, but you can make out little hallways and rooms for a very rudimentary dwarf fort in there. Now, ideally, in a game situation you would have one or both of either item pictures, like beds, barrels, doors, tables, whatever AND something to lead to a text description. The text description would give a detailed rundown of what each area looked like, what items it had in it, and what things those items contained (boxes, drawers, cabinets, etc). Also I suppose the text would say if there were people or things in an area as well.

It's a little rough but again, just for demonstration purposes. There you have it.

Problems: Trees! Other things that cover stuff up as well, but trees for sure. If most of that island were covered in trees, then how would you show it? How would you show it without covering up all that lovely topographical terrain or Z levels and all the good  stuff underneath it. I'd imagine stuff would be happening mostly on the forest floor and not in the treetops so the canopy wouldn't be too useful to see except to know there are trees there. Maybe we handle this like we do with underground areas and just do two levels to it? Who knows.


« Last Edit: October 28, 2014, 03:36:59 pm by Truean »
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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2014, 12:16:22 pm »

Man, I wish my maps were half as good as yours. What programs do you use?

Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2014, 03:36:10 pm »

I very much appreciate the compliment. Thank you.

The only program I used in the stuff above is Microsoft Paint. Basically, I'm what people would call old school if they were polite, and um, if they weren't polite, then they'd call it out of date. :) I remember when I first started this stuff, you'd individually manipulate pixels through zoom, etc. It's been suggested that I use GIMP, and I probably will. That's honestly mostly because I have the Windows 7 version of MS Paint; I didn't know it had been scaled way down and had most of its features taken away. I'll have to make time to learn how to use GIMP.

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2014, 03:43:54 pm »

I use Paint.net myself: it's good because it's kind of like a scaled back photoshop. Minimalist, I'd call it, underpowered others would. I have to say, you got excellent results for using just straight-up Paint.

Truean

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Re: Creating a Dwarf Forum game {processes, etc)
« Reply #9 on: October 30, 2014, 10:21:02 pm »

Quote
[nods]

I am going to have to figure out some basic gimp or paint.net. Tool updates need to happen. They're going to take a while though, because of time constraints.

That said there are other aspects to consider.

2.) Player Issues
B.) Sense of ability to intelligently impact game

Adaptation is smart. Most games are stupid, because they don't.

Even your simple classic dungeon crawl is kinda nuts if you think about it. Assuming biological, unified command structure, the dungeon inhabitants can communicate with each other and plan for problems (you). Instead of that, each room seems to be thought of as a separate encounter and it doesn't really matter how you handle it: brute force, or, stealth, or smarts. This is stupid and in a "realistic" setting taking on a nest of 100 to 200 goblins (or anything) should be a MAJOR undertaking. Simply kicking in the door when you're outnumbered 50 to 1 or more... No thank you. At the very least, they should take some countermeasures against you and have expected to do so beforehand (otherwise how did they survive this long.

Basic organization would include warning systems (alarms, sentinels, guard rotations, warning bells), and responses ( using cover and concealment to prepare, setting ambushes, massive guard backup, letting elite troops, cavalry, or guard animals loose, arming of traps, having important people and items retreat to safety, etc). This is the difference between kicking in the door and using your stealth brain a bit. Presumably, the people or things you are raiding have thought about and experienced attacks before, and you aren't the first or the last thing to try and take them out. Act like it, and it's way more immersive.

Countermeasures to basic enemy organization include scouting (literal scouts, spies/infiltrators, intercepted enemy plans, marked locations with paint or symbols etc), ambushes, deliberately spreading misinformation, sabotage, intercepting supplies, sieges, diversionary tactics, flanking, etc. If possible you also wanna train followers to use additional numbers and attack from different sides or use coordinated attacks on different locations.

More advanced enemies might use counter planning against you. They may also adapt to your tactics. Something as simple as noticing that a lot of your kills involve head shots could lead to an enemy army issuing helmets to everybody. Maybe they start an elite squad to take you out and counter the threat you pose to them, or put a price on your head. They may try to lure you into a compromising situation, or otherwise deploy countermeasures against you.... They may start using formation fighting against you with a shield wall. If you just try to use one large weapon and no shield, then they may send in more archers, because they know you can't block the arrows as well without a shield.

Really, think about how you would set up a base if you were an "enemy." You'd have guards,, and alarms, and stuff if given the option right? If you could set up the situation beforehand, you'd set up some kind of plan to deal with intruders that you KNEW would be coming right? Also you should expect supply raids against your stockpiles and production of things. Taking out a skilled enemy blacksmith might mean they can't issue or repair armor, etc.

All of this adds up to something better than gaining a "+1" in some skill, if you ask me. Even if you are playing a brute force fighter, some situational smarts is going to come in handy, and just "I whack them with a weapon," just gets old doesn't it?

On that note, command lets you expand your player options in game without being individually done by your character. Assuming you can find people with relevant skills/abilities, convince and equip them to do something, maybe you should consider it. Having items crafted by somebody else isn't a bad thing, and neither is having scouting or fighting services provided by others. Same deal with buildings and just about anything you can imagine. Also, having people on your side is a great thing, because then they aren't against you and may provide you with things (information, goods, services, whatever). Even if you don't have specific groups or factions on your side, it's often nice to have "the people" or "the public" rooting for you (a pitch fork mob isn't a nice thing to go against). You might even perhaps end up with a position of influence or power within such a group.

Example of how this comes together:
Note: This is just a simplified example.

Objective: Rid area of goblins
Infested areas: Forest, underground, and ruins
Endangered areas: Town, monastery, outlying farm fields, and river trade. 

Personal Assets:
Base of Operations (outside of area, transit an issue)
2 Platoons of support troops

Allies: Dwarves, provides armor and weapons for support troops and self
Local farmers, supplies food
Monastery, supplies intelligence, knowledge and very very basic scouting
Woodsmen: Supplies archery services and detailed scouting

You can probably imagine how this and other aspects could work together to create a nice tactical gameplay experience perhaps complete with maps to use terrain to your advantage. Defend the village and its resource production from goblin raids, along with all your other assets. Create ambushes to whittle down enemy numbers using scouting information. Kill goblin hunters to lessen their food supplies. Use your support troops to create a diversion while you assassinate key goblin personnel or carry out covert ops. Simultaneously take out the guard towers, sabotage the warning bells, etc. After that, figure out where these goblins came from, etc.

From there, you've got new allies and people on your side to reward you after you've cleared the place out. New alliances, reward items, etc. This kind of flexibility isn't possible in many games on computer and is one of the pros to non computer games.

Keep in mind, that enemies might not adapt or react to things the way you want them to and in fact will often move to frustrate the heck out of you. Take a look at Hercules. They screwed him over by driving him insane and making it so he killed his wife and kids.... Ruined his reputation for a bit at best and drove him a lil nuts with grief. How many comic book heroes have had bad PR campaigns waged against them by their enemies? Same deal. Frankly some players deserve it.

And remember, with great power, comes things who are not happy you used that power to beat the crap out of them.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2014, 10:37:15 pm by Truean »
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