Playstyle Discussion

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Playstyle Discussion

Post by AlexFricke on Fri May 22, 2015 7:08 pm

I was working on some design stuff and realized that a lot of the weapon and magic design probably needs to come from a playstyle. As in, we need to identify various player and enemy playstyles and design weapons and magics to suit that playstyle. For example:

Player playstyles
Hit and run
Big damage
Combos!
Kiting with spells
Hit everything
Tanky/wading through enemies
Support/I fight for my friends

Eneny playstyles
Tanky/damage soak
Swarm
Ranged kiter
Fast and Flurrious
Heavy hitter
Healer/buffer/supporty

By identifying these sorts of things, we should be able to hone in on the types of weapons we should use and their style of attacks, and the types of spells we should focus on. For instance, a player who enjoys just swinging wildly and wants to hit everything around them excels at fighting swarms of enemies, because of the AoE (area of effect) from their attacks. Therefore a weapon with a large, sweeping attack animations would suit them well. Whereas another player may love one-shotting squishy enemies and two/three-shotting tankier enemies, so would really enjoy a slow, heavy hitting weapon/spell.

Questions to spark the brainstorm+discussion:
Are there other player or enemy playstyles you guys can think of?
Is there a playstyle you or a friend particularly enjoy?
What does the playstyle excel at? What type of enemy encounters does it excel at?
What is the playstyle weak at? What type of enemy encounters give this playstyle trouble?
What types of enemies are your favorite to face? (from a fun perspective)
What types of enemies are your least favorite to face? (from a fun perspective)

And please try to include an explanation of why, as much as possible.

This is meant to be a brainstorm+discussion. Later on I'll try to glean the essentials from all this.

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by ThomasB on Mon Jun 08, 2015 11:31 am

Here's a look at some of the playstyles I put together. Would love to hear more from everyone else. I think we can use these to determine broad areas of gameplay that we can then mix and match to cater to as many playstyles as possible.

PLAYSTYLES


Charger/Rusher/Hit+Run

Fast, agile
Hit+Run
High net damage / high impact damage
Low health/defense -> glass cannon
Typically high skill to efficiently deal damage without dying a lot


Artillery

AOE damage from a distance
Constant nukes
Slow rate, but high yield
Probably lower health, or just required to be at a distance to get enough time to fire off spells
Doesn’t seem like much skill is needed, just a matter of efficiency


Heavy/Tank/Crusher

High power
Tanky, short range
Absorbs punishment, dishes it out
Slow, Tough
Low skill, but should be pretty enjoyable for most players


Sweeper

Tornado of damage; low per enemy, but high overall
Mops up little enemies very effectively
Not effective vs. single, tough enemies
Damage covers large areas, always hitting something (potentially powerful magic then?)
Low skill


Duelist

Opposite of sweeper; focuses on brutalizing one enemy at a time
Most interested in marking/tearing down targets methodically
Can get overwhelmed
Very effective versus high skill/elite enemies
Med to high skill


Support

Not as aggressive, uses powers to help allies/hinder enemies
Healing/buffing allies/debuffing enemies
So how do they use weapons? Could there be a TF2 style medic gun?
Heavily reliant on keeping back and using magic frequently
Med skill


Controller/Trickster

Messes with enemies/allies in minor ways
Moves/interrupts enemies into tactical or amusing positions
Can hold their own, but likely isn’t going to be the MVP
Derives joy from pulling the rug out from under others
High skill, unless they’re there to grief


Balanced

Average attacker/defender style
No particular strengths or weaknesses
Very approachable, a good starting point for new players  
Low skill

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by ThomasB on Sat Jun 13, 2015 2:11 pm

Princess

Main Style: Glass Cannon

Sub-Styles:

Berserker: big sacrifices and dangerous gambles that destroy enemies.
Potential perks: when magic is full, attacks are augmented with high damage at a cost of health per hit; magic can be used as health when health reaches zero; kills restore health.

Damage: > > > >
Defense: >
Mobility: > >
Health: > > >
Magic: > >

Vanguard: Smash into enemies and leave them staggered and vulnerable.  
Potential perks: chance to stun/fear enemies on hit; portion of taken damage reduced; damage splashes to all adjacent enemies.

Damage: > > >
Defense: > >
Mobility: > > >
Health: >
Magic: > > >

Warlock: spells of great power at great cost.
Potential perks: siphon ally health; less health = greater magic effect; killing enemies increases stats temporarily.  

Damage: > >
Defense: > >
Mobility: > >
Health: > >  
Magic: > > > >


Pompous Knight

Main Style: Sweeper

Sub-Styles:

Skirmisher: get in, cause damage, get out. High damage, but fragile.
Potential perks: moving/dodging increases damage output temporarily; sprint attacks do more damage; lower health increases speed.

Damage: > > > >
Defense: > >
Mobility: > > >
Health: >
Magic: > >

Champion: Large, sweeping attacks, with good survivability.
Potential perks: gain health for every enemy hit per swing; increased range of sweeping attacks; more blocking juice.

Damage: > > >
Defense: > > >
Mobility: > >
Health: > > >
Magic: >

Battle Mage: big, destructive powers most effective at a distance.
Potential perks: gain more magic for every enemy/ally hit per spell; ‘hold’ spells charge faster; spell effect increases the further away the target is.

Damage: > > >
Defense: >
Mobility: > >
Health: > >
Magic: > > > >



Mysterious Knight

Main Style: Duelist

Sub-Styles:

Assassin: cause massive damage to single enemies and avoid damage.
Potential perks: chance for enemy attacks to miss; deal more damage to a target the more you hit it; insta-kill enemies under a certain health threshold.  

Damage: > > > >
Defense: > > >
Mobility: > > >
Health: >
Magic: >

Trapper: debuff enemies to make them easy targets.
Potential perks: attacks have a chance to paralyze enemies; more damage against targets with debuffs; higher focussed attack damage.

Damage: > > >
Defense: > >
Mobility: > > >
Health: > >
Magic: > >

Blink Mage: Extremely fast attacker, able to get in and get out before anyone knows what’s happening.
Potential perks: dodge replaced with an instant-blink teleport; using magic temporarily boosts stats; gains huge but very short speed boost on kill.

Damage: > >
Defense: > >
Mobility: > > > >
Health: >
Magic: > > >




Totally Human Knight

Main Style: Tank

Sub-Styles:

Thorn Guard: get payback for enemies who would dare harm you.
Potential perks: return portion of damage received to attackers; slow and damage adjacent enemies; more enemies nearby means bigger stat boosts.  

Damage: > > >
Defense: > > >
Mobility: >
Health: > > >
Magic: > >

Royal Guard: taunt and tank large groups of enemies.
Potential perks: enemies are more likely to attack you; the more enemies attacking you, the more damage resistance you get; health regenerates over time.  

Damage: >
Defense: > > > >
Mobility: >
Health: > > > >
Magic: > >

Sentinel: augment magic with powerful buffs.
Potential perks: casting a spell grants temporary hit points to nearby allies; higher health increases magical power; increased defense when casting spells.

Damage: >
Defense: > > >
Mobility: > >
Health: > > >
Magic: > > >

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by AlexFricke on Sat Jun 20, 2015 1:33 pm

Design Goals: To identify a unifying gameplay hook for each character. To then create two subclasses for each character that are distinct, but tie into that character’s gameplay hook. Finally, to then create two Perks for each subclass that satisfies the above guidelines. Each Perk should be distinct and impactful. At least one of the perks should create a unique gameplay pattern for the subclass, allowing the subclasses to feel unique.

Perks are listed in the order the subclass would likely acquire them. Other Perk ideas are listed; these were mostly stepping stones on the way to the current Perks, though in some cases are alternate ideas to the current Perks.


Princess
Gameplay Hook: Risk & Reward, Glass Cannon. You have great power at your disposal, but you have to put yourself at risk to fully utilize it.

Berserker
Your power increases the lower your health is. Your struggle is to keep yourself at low health to gain your power boost, but also keep yourself from dying in your vulnerable state.
Perks
Bloodlust: When your magic resource is full, weapon damage is increased at the cost of Health per hit. When magic resource is consumed, you are also healed.
Rampage: When you kill an enemy, you gain a temporary movement speed and attack speed boost that decays over time.
Other Perk Ideas
Rampage v2: Weapon damage is increased based off of your missing Health, and you gain a brief speed boost after dealing weapon damage.
Rage: Weapon damage is increased based off of your missing Health.
Pursuit: You gain a brief speed boost after dealing weapon damage.

Warlock
You are a powerful mid-ranged mage, but your power comes from your proximity to enemies. To unleash your maximum potential, you must also fully charge your spells, leaving you vulnerable to the nearby enemies.
Perks
Overcharge: You can charge spells faster the more enemies are nearby. Additionally, you can charge spells to 5 magic orbs, making your spells more powerful. (Note: normally you can only charge spells to 3 magic orbs.)
Concussive Concentration: While charging spells, enemies near you are slowed. Upon releasing a (fully?) charged spell, nearby enemies are slightly knocked back and magic resource is partially refunded, based off of charge time.
Other Perk Ideas
Overcharge v2: Your spells refund half the magic resource spent when cast fully charged.
Overcharge v3: You can charge spells longer, which allows them to grow in power further.
Overcharge v4: Your spells deal bonus damage and knockback when they are at least half charged.
Overcharge v5: After reaching max spell charge, your spells continue to grow in power at the cost of Health. (Most likely candidate to replace/alter the current Overcharge version.)
Essence Tap: You gain magic resource when an enemy dies near you.
Essence Tap v2: Your spells deal bonus damage when enemies are nearby.
Essence Strike: Your weapon attacks slow enemies and grant bonus magic resource.
Power in Death: When an enemy dies near you, gain a temporary, stacking spell damage buff.


Pompous Knight
Gameplay Hook: Sweeper, Horde Combat, Constant Action. You enjoy an active life, destroying enemies left and right, whether in the thick of the melee or standing far away.

Champion
You are at home immersed amongst your foes, gaining power the longer you stay in combat.
Perks
Blade Weaving: Focused Attacks apply a mark to an enemy. Marked enemies hit with a Sweeping Attack trigger area damage.
Indomitable: After dealing or receiving damage, you gain a damage resistance buff that grows in power over time. You must remain in combat to keep the buff active.
Other Perk Ideas
Weaving: Damaging an enemy marks them. Weapon damage consumes spell marks, giving you temporary damage resistance. Spell damage consumes weapon marks, slowing them. (The same damage source cannot consume and apply a mark.)
Indomitable v2: After dealing or receiving damage, you gain a weapon damage buff that grows in power over time. You must remain in combat to keep the buff active.
Consuming Strikes: If your Sweeping Attack hits more than one enemy, gain X Health. (X = flat number, % of their missing Health, flat number * level…?)
Debilitating Strikes: Your Sweeping Attacks that hit enemies reduce their damage by X%.

Tempest
You are a long-range mage that benefits greatly from constantly throwing a barrage of spells at your enemies.
Perks
Barrage: Gain a brief, stacking spell damage buff each time you cast a spell. (You have to keep casting quickly to maintain the buff.)
Double-Up: When casting a spell, you have a 50% chance to cast a second, mirrored spell.
Other Perk Ideas
Meek Inheritance: Your uncharged spells deal extra damage. (About 75% of a fully charged spell.)
Fulmination: Enemies explode when you kill them, dealing damage to and slowing nearby enemies.


Mysterious Knight
Gameplay Hook: Duelist, Hit & Run, Intermittent Big Action. You prefer to take your time, choosing exactly when and where to strike.

Acrobat
You have a sultry romance with mobility, and enjoy flitting about the battlefield, striking suddenly where the enemy least expects.
Perks
Static Strike: Moving in any way builds charges, which your next weapon attack consumes to deal significant bonus damage. Up to 2 fully charged weapon attacks can be readied.
       Nitty-gritty – Gain X charges for every meter traveled, up to 100 charges. Blink Spell generates Y charges upon use. Weapon attacks consume up to 50 charges, and deal extra damage based off of the charges consumed.
Psych-Out: For 2 seconds after evading, if you evade again, instead of the normal evade, you blink back to the starting position of your first evade.
Other Perk Ideas
Isolation Strike: After moving at least X meters, your next Focused Attack deals bonus damage and will knockback enemies surrounding your target.
Preparation: Your weapon attacks gain a significant damage boost the longer you space them apart. (Max bonus damage reached when you have waited 2 seconds.)
       Nitty-gritty – While not attacking, you gain a charge every 0.1 seconds, up to a total of 20 charges. Your next weapon attack consumes these charges, and deals a large amount of extra damage, based on the number of charges consumed.


Trapper
The battlefield is your playground, and you excel at twisting it to your advantage.
Perks
Frost Trap: When you evade, you drop a Frost Trap. Evade over it again to pick it up. Only 3 Frost Traps can be active at a time. When triggered, they deal minor area damage and temporarily create a slowing field. (Carry Capacity: 3. Recharge: 5 seconds.)
Frostbite: Your weapon attacks and spells deal bonus damage to slowed enemies, and you take less damage from slowed enemies.
Other Perk Ideas for Either Acrobat or Trickster
Agile: When you evade, you can immediately evade again. (You can only do this once every 2 seconds.)
Primed: When you damage an enemy, you mark them. Evading through marked enemies consumes the mark, dealing damage and slowing them.


Totally Human Knight
Gameplay Hook: Tank, Unstoppable Force, Immovable Object. You are extremely difficult to take down, and nothing will stand in your way from your objective.

Juggernaut
Your body becomes a weapon in its own right. Nothing can stand in your way as you barrel across the battlefield.
Perks
Overrun: If you keep moving in the same direction for 1 second, you gain increased speed, you can move through enemies, and your body deals damage and knockback to any enemy you come into contact with. Overrun drains magic resource over time, and cancels when it runs out.
Vigilance: While charging weapon attacks, you take reduced damage and you cannot be interrupted. Additionally, your charged weapon attacks inflict bonus knockback.
Other Perk Ideas
Blast Shield: If you don’t take damage for 5 seconds, gain a damage absorption shield. When the shield breaks, it explodes, damaging and knocking back nearby enemies. (5-second cooldown before a new shield is able to form after exploding.)
Fulmination: Enemies explode when you kill them, dealing damage to and slowing nearby enemies.

Sentinel
You are your allies’ best friend, and can jump in to rescue them at a moment's notice. You may not be the most dangerous knight, but you can take an incredible amount of punishment.
Perks
Savior: Use the Golden Pumpkin interface to leap to the rescue of allies below 40% Health. Upon arrival, heal the ally and knockback nearby enemies.
Bulwark: After absorbing 200 damage with your shield, you get an Overshield, which absorbs 200 damage. Upon breaking the Overshield, it explodes, dealing damage to nearby enemies.
Other Perk Ideas
Guardian: If allies are nearby, you and your allies gain damage reduction and a small speed buff. This effect increases for each ally near you.
Kill Steal: When near an ally, your next weapon attack or damaging spell deals significantly more damage to enemies under 30% Health and heals allies near you, based off of their missing Health. (Cooldown: 2 seconds.)
Bodyguard: If you or a nearby ally is below 50% Health, your attacks inflict bonus knockback.

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by AlexFricke on Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:02 pm

Notes from Nathan's discussion with Thomas (with my thoughts in italics):

Princess/Berserker/Bloodlust: Give it a different negative. Instead of hurting self, increase the damage you take for a few seconds.

Alex - I really like the negative =( I think it could create an interesting tug-of-war with the mana consumption heal. I do like this alternative, though, if the self-damage proves to be a problem. Other ways to tweak the negative is make it deal a percentage of your current Health (and round up), so it hurts more at higher Health, less at lower Health, and it can never actually kill you.

Nathan - The reason I like a different negative, such as increasing damage you take is because it still feels like a debuff, but one you can fight. A player can be extra careful to avoid damage during the debuff time or not care and go all out to deal as much damage as possible. It means there is more to do with the ability as you play around with it and your own play style. It also feels like you are more powerful, because this is a debuff you can fight, not one that instantly reduces your health with no chance of "mastering" the ability and its balance.

Alex - Hmm, I see your point, and I think this is a valid approach, but I worry that the debuff might end up feeling intangible to players, as in they easily forget about it, then are left wondering why they just took a lot of damage. For example, I don't want a player going: "Why did I just take so much damage? I just got hit by a couple of orc grunt attacks. I've been hit by grunt attacks plenty of times. Why did they do so much damage this time?" and then realizing afterward that it was because of the debuff they forgot about. The health cost on hit variant has the immediate feedback of "My own attacks are hurting me; I should be careful and manage my mana appropriately. Think I'm going to take the rest of my feedback to a response post. I have a few more thoughts, and an alternate idea.


Pompous/Tempest/Double Up: Change to a % chance to cast a fully charged spell instantly.

Alex - I have come to really like this change. As you mentioned, it gives a more discernible high moment, and still allows the player to see the partially/fully charged version of their spells in their optimal play pattern.

Nathan - Also suggest name change to Spell Surge or something of the like.

Alex - I agree, definitely would need a name change. I like Spell Surge. I though of Maximize as well, but I think I like Spell Surge better.


Totally Human/Juggernaut/Overrun: Too much damage?

Alex - There is definitely that potential. We'll have to watch it closely. Hopefully the (fairly new) addition of it draining your mana will do a lot to gate its damage. But yes, we'll have to watch its damage output closely. How much feels good to the player, and now much is actually balanced? Hmm, we could also do things like: the damage ramps up the longer you are charging around. I think we can figure out a way to make it work and feel good too.


Totally Human/Sentinel/Savior: Golden Pumpkin already kind of does this.
Totally Human/Sentinel/Bulwark: Why earn this initially? Just give it to the player at the start of the level and charge back up when broken.

Alex - In general, the Sentinel is the subclass I'm least happy with. Savior definitely feels pretty similar to the Golden Pumpkin pass. I really like the idea of leaping to your teammate's aid, though, so want to explore it more; it might just not have the right extra effects yet. Your Bulwark comment I completely agree on, as well as your sentiment that it would be nice to have some more aura/supporty stuff on the Sentinel. At some point we should do another pass on the Sentinel, and really rethink him. I think we're close, but not quite there yet with him.


/end admin edit war

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by AlexFricke on Thu Jun 25, 2015 6:35 pm

Concerning the Princess's Berserker Bloodlust Perk:

To recap my thoughts about the damage taken amplification debuff, I worry that it could be too intangible. To use my previous example, I don't want a player going: "Why did I just take so much damage? I just got hit by a couple of orc grunt attacks. I've been hit by grunt attacks plenty of times. Why did they do so much damage this time?" and then realizing afterward that it was because of the debuff they forgot about.

The health-cost-on-hit variant has the advantage in that the health cost is immediately noticeable, as it happens immediately and triggers off of the player's own actions. I also think it plays really cleanly with the heal-on-mana-consumption side of Bloodlust, hopefully creating an interesting tug-of-war that the player is in complete control over.

I did think of a variant of Bloodlust, based off of the damage taken amplification debuff, that I think plays more into your idea of "playing around the debuff," and also makes it more tangible.

Bloodlust v2: When your mana is full, your weapon attacks deal significantly more damage and apply a temporary debuff to you. While you are debuffed, the next time you are damaged the debuff is consumed and you lose X% of your total Health. (Where X is an impactful number, e.g. 5% or greater.)

Something along those lines. This makes the debuff significantly more noticeable, and I think creates a more clear line to play around. I also don't think it necessarily needs the healing side, as the self-damage is completely avoidable. The player can more easily play around of the risk side of the risk-reward pattern.

I think this version still creates the dynamics you had in mind, but makes the line a little more pronounced. The player gets to ask themselves:
- Do I keep my mana low, so I don't have to worry about taking extra damage?
- At full mana, do I space out my aggression, to let the debuff fall off?
- At full mana, how long can I go full-aggro before needing to play around the debuff or turn off the risk?

I like this version a lot better, but I'm still not completely convinced.

What I like about the original version of Bloodlust is it's much more binary nature. When at full mana, you are forced into risk-reward. You know you are taking additional damage, the question is how long can you commit to staying in "rage mode." There's no playing around the risk-reward, its just there, and while I think playing around it can be interesting and fun, I'm not convinced it's even a good idea. I think I prefer the "playing around it" to simply be, "I'm not, I'm simply turning off the risk-reward for it bit."

Both versions have a decision tree which are very similar. There's the "should rage mode be turned on or off?" branches. Then, if "rage mode" is on, there is the "how long can I stay in rage mode" question. The difference starts here, where Bloodlust v2 also asks "do I want to play around the debuff falling off?" This gives the risk-reward of "rage mode" an extra degree of safety that I'm not entirely enthused about

This aspect of Bloodlust v2 creates the opportunity for a more hit-and-run style to be used by the Berserker player, where the player is waiting for the debuff to fall off before going back into combat after briefly going in. I don't think this is a gameplay pattern (hit-and-run) that we want to encourage for the Berserker. I want the Berserker to go in and stay in, then when they're really wounded, finally pull out and lick their wounds. I'm of the opinion that currently, the original Bloodlust idea does this a bit better. The healing on the original Bloodlust idea then gives the player a way to recover, so they can then repeat the process. Part of the reason I don't think the heal necessarily needs to exist on v2 is because there is already an opportunity to completely take no extra damage, so self healing on top of this seems like overkill.

On further reflection, I think what I'm having trouble with is the debuff falling off, potentially creating a hit-and-run pattern for the Berserker, which just feels wrong to me. I'd be tempted to just make the debuff permanent, as long as the Berserker's mana is full. This way, playing around the negative simply becomes "avoid damage" which they want to do anyway. I suspect part of the issue people are having with the original version of Bloodlust stems from it forcing them to eventually duck out of combat and heal. Which now that I've stated this, I kind of have an issue with as well.

With this in mind, I propose a new version.

Bloodlust v3: When your mana is full, weapon damage is increased, but when you take damage you additionally lose 10% of your current Health. When mana is consumed, you are also healed.

This version allows you to potentially indefinitely stay in "rage mode" with good play. "Playing around the debuff" doesn't change their play pattern in any weird ways, as avoiding damage is something players are already doing. It doesn't have the potential issue of introducing a hit-and-run pattern, as there is no "vulnerability window" to play around. It will force the player out after a certain number of hits, because it's dealing percent damage. (This could totally be a flat value, but I think percent is kind of interesting because it allows us to pseudo-tune around number of hits taken, as opposed to just trying to get a number that feels right.) Percent current Health means the player will never die because of the self-damage cause by Bloodlust (as long as we round damage taken down). A large self-damage on taking damage allows us to make the self-damage feel impactful, as opposed to basing it off of enemy damage, which could sometimes feel impactful, and other times not feel impactful at all (which might actually be something we want, so there's definitely a case for the debuff amplifying enemy damage instead).

So yeah. Have an essay on Bloodlust. /shove

Thoughts?

=)

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by NathanKinnick on Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:35 pm

Hmm.
Hmmmmmm.
I'm not sure where to start. I think I'll start by saying that I like version 3 the best, but still have qualms. I agree with the thought about the debuff wearing off discouraging the player from the playstyle we actually want them to have, and I agree with most of your thought process for getting there and to the third version. But first I'll comment on some of the logic and stuff here, because I didn't really make one of my points clear about the original Bloodlust. First of all, I am talking about "playing around WITH the debuff" which is very different from "playing around the debuff". When I say play around with, I don't mean work around and avoid entirely. I mean experiment with how it affects your personal playstyle which may be even more focused than Princess - Berserker. It could be that you like the risks for a bit, but chicken out early. You play craps. Or it could be that you stay in the battle, taking risks to the maximum. You play Russian Roulette. Both are risk reward, the difference comes with how extreme you are about it.

This is why I think that flat damage is less interesting than a debuff that has the potential to be avoided. The risk is a single yes or no question. With a debuff that has a chance of avoidance, the risk happens every second, both when you attack and when THEY attack. It is a constant push/pull of your mastery over combat and the numbers and skill of those you're facing. And to be honest, if a player can completely avoid damage during this, then we have a different problem of AI or difficulty, because that really shouldn't be happening for long stretches of time. But this debuff instead of a straight damage amount adds a second layer of risk and reward to complement the play style.

So like I said, I like the 3rd version. As long as your mana is full, input (what you take) and output (what you deal) damage are increased. But I don't like the 10% Health, again because its a flat number (and a really high one at that). Especially right when the player obtains this perk and doesn't know its ins and outs, that will kill the player extremely quickly. Like you said, we want things to feel impactful, but I don't think every single hit from or against you should. Instead, I'd go with a multiplier, such as double. For both input and output. So the ability would be reworded as:

When your mana is full, weapon damage is doubled, but you also take double damage.

I would probably remove the healing. If you want your reward, take the risk. If it doesn't work out, you gotta pay up. But at least this way it doesn't feel like a punishment or something unstoppable. It's kind of on you.

The reason that I like multipliers like this is it is another layer of risk/reward. Take on a grunt like this and you might get a few more bumps and bruises, but you could do a bit better at crowd control. But if you want to quickly take down any of the Elites that we've been talking about (and it sounds as if they'll be fairly common, so you'll need to), then you had better know what you're doing!

In essence, every part of this ability is take a risk for a reward, layered on top of each other. Risk 1: Do you go into Bloodlust or not? Risk 2: Do you stay in the thick of battle or near the edge? And Risk 3: Do you fight the tough enemies or the easy ones? Each one of these is a risk, and while it's possible to choose safer options, each degree gets more and more tempting with the power you could gain and the damage you could do. It has a lot of variance to it, while all still focusing on the risk/reward aspect. I think it's a really good iteration from where we started, but please feel free to keep iterating and give me your guys' thoughts!

So that's my essay. Who's next?

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Re: Playstyle Discussion

Post by AlexFricke on Fri Jun 26, 2015 12:19 am

Oooh! Me!

First, try not to get hung up on numbers when I use them. When I do list a number, it will tend to be on the extreme side (really big or really small) and its there to help communicate my thoughts. 10% current health may be way to big, but by listing 10%, I can get you to think about the extreme case, and hopefully get people thinking about the range of possibility, instead of number twiddling. If I listed 2%, what does that actually feel like to the player? Not much. But 10%? Now you start thinking about the pros and cons and how they play off one another.

Glad we've come to the same page about trying to emphasize the "all in" nature of the Berserker, and how previous version of Bloodlust (both v1 and v2) have their issues.

In regards to your version (I'll call it v4), I did mention the possibility that that sort of route might be the better path. Currently, I don't have much of a preference between v3 and v4. I think they both work in accomplishing the playstyle we want to create for the Berserker. They merely have a different feel for the risk the player is skirting around. One scales the risk with the enemy you are facing (v4), while the other cares not what you're facing, when they hit you its (almost) always going to hurt (v3). I can't really judge which is better without actually playtesting. (Though I do think v3 potentially allows us to amp the Berserker's bonus to crazy values, as it can kinda make any monster dangerous. Whether this is a good thing or not, I don't really know. Though the potential to make any monster dangerous is kind of interesting.) (Also, I want to properly explain percent current health damage, to make sure everyone understands its dynamics. But I'm going to hold off for now.)

About the healing being removed: I'm mostly okay with its removal, whichever version we end up with. No healing helps emphasize the risk. Honestly, the biggest reason I'd be sad to see it go would be because I think the underlying mechanic has an interesting interaction with gaining a buff at full mana. Mechanically, I think that duality is really cool, interesting, and could be really fun to play with as a player. That sort of on-demand healing could be really problematic though. Maybe we can find a different use for it, or use it elsewhere.

As an aside, I want to talk about percent health effects, both healing and damage, how current health differs from total health, and some other interesting aspects of them. I want to makes sure we're all on the same page, as they give us some interesting tools to work with. But I'm going to hold off for now, as I think I've already went on long enough.

AlexFricke
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