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Request: Skill Training Through Usage


Pathfinder Online

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Goblin Squad Member

@Marou

After reading some of your post, I see the main point made is your waiting to do something later. The only reason this would be, is if when you started, you couldn't do anything. Which isn't going to be the case. It was said that there is a starting area to introduce you to game ui/mechanics, and that you would leave the are with your archtype and a skill set <approximately = level 5 or so>. So now you have skills and things to do, what are you waiting for ? If you are waiting for that skill in que, you wasted your initial training. Also, with the level disparity being low, your 5 months as a barbarian isn't a very big difference than your 1 month as mage. They will be in fact close in the effectiveness. I will assume that there also will be some base skills that every one will have that will give plenty of things to do, even when just starting. Building a game, where a new player has very little to do would be detrimental.


Nihimon wrote:
Marou_ wrote:
Leveling to cap in this game is around 32X slower for a casual player, and probably 100X slower for a powergamer than a standard theme park deal.
If that's the foundation of your complaint, then I don't think you're going to get much sympathy. For a lot of us, that's a feature, not a bug.

The basis of the complaint is that if you must specialize for real life months, weeks, or even days to be effective at various roles; it's not easy to experience any other game content. Getting sick of the one thing your newbie self decided to do means you are out of the game for most people.

When I get a game I like to experience in some part the majority of the various types of content available.

While I've no doubt a hardcore game like this will have many a power-gamer/guild with 10+ accounts encompassing min/maxxed archetypes and master artisan/crafters/traders they can play at any time, my wallet and desire isn't so fat that playing the game in that way appeals to me.

If I get tired of doing what I like most (and have thus by necessity specialized in). I want to do other things that don't *feel* like a waste of time, and I want to do them today, not in weeks or days or months.

It doesn't feel like a waste of time to roll an alt in a game with normal advancement, no matter how grindy. It does feel like a complete waste of time with time-based advancement. The only appealing option (carry 2+ subscriptions) is not appealing to me.

Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Marou_ wrote:
Nihimon wrote:
Marou_ wrote:
Leveling to cap in this game is around 32X slower for a casual player, and probably 100X slower for a powergamer than a standard theme park deal.
If that's the foundation of your complaint, then I don't think you're going to get much sympathy. For a lot of us, that's a feature, not a bug.

The basis of the complaint is that if you must specialize for real life months, weeks, or even days to be effective at various roles; it's not easy to experience any other game content. Getting sick of the one thing your newbie self decided to do means you are out of the game for most people.

The thing is almost everything you are talking about is still pacing not system. No matter what, system, use or time the issues you complain about remain consistant. In either system say you start out as a barbarian, earn your way up to 10 merit badges, it is still going to be starting wizard at the equivelent of level 1, and having to do the same things to get your abilities up to what your barbarian is. Of course what we do not know is any clue of the level of mixing from classes. We can't say for certain if say when your rage runs out you can immidiately go to casting spells etc... But basically in the end it is still about pacing, if the goal is for it to take an average of 2.5 years before characters reach capstone, then that is likely going to be the time it takes to reach capstone, regardless of whether it is a use based system or a time based system. Really the 2 issues being pre-emptively complained about have nothing to do with which system they go with, they are based on

1. Starting power for a archtype.
2. Time to reach the mysterious "effective" power for an archtype.

Both of which are complete and absolute unknowns.

Your complaint is completely unrelated to whether it was a time based or skill based system, in eve you would be just as unhappy if you had to spend 6 weeks poorly mining crap as you would if you had to wait 6 weeks for the timer to move before you could mine things better then crap.

This entirely falls into pacing, If the goal of GW is for it to take 2.5 years to reach the first capstone, then you can easilly expect for it to take 2.5 years before anyone to reach a capstone, even if they went with a use based system, if they went with a use based system, then you can expect it to take 2.5 years to reach the capstone, assuming an average of 6 hours per day of doing the class/activity.

Yes themepark games goal is to get you to cap in under a month. If GW's goal were to let you reach cap in under a month then they could easilly set the skill time so that it takes 1 month to reach capstone with a time based system.

Goblin Squad Member

@Marou_, it seems like you're arguing different things at different times.

If I'm level 40 in WoW or LOTRO (both use-based advancement systems for crafting), and I decide I want to make my own leather armor, there is no way short of having someone else dump a ton of resources on me that I'm going to be actually making my own leather armor anytime soon. I'm going to have spend mindless hours of tedium advancing my harvesting and crafting skills before I can make anything useful for my level.

In PFO, at least I can do something fun during that time, instead of mindless tedium.

Goblin Squad Member

I think I know the point Marou is going for.

In EVE Online I invested most of my points into training Caldari ships, missiles, shielding, things that increased the amount/power (CPU and Powergrid for those of you familiar with EVE.) of things that I could equip etc.

Because of this I could power through a level 3 mission quickly and easily with little risk, or slowly and carefully power my way through a level 4 mission even though it was pretty risky. Both of these brought in pretty high profits.

Some of the time though, I logged in and all I really wanted to do was mine, or go exploring with my little probe ship.

Unfortunately, as I didn't have near as high of skills in mining or exploration, viewed both as a relative waste of time, and continued doing missions because the payout was better even though that isn't what I really wanted to be doing.

I just let my mining/exploration skills train knowing that someday I would be able to use them to the same effect. Unfortunately for me and EVE, I quit before that point ever came.

In a game like LotRO, or Darkfall, or Wurm, (I used those two as an example because I think that it is important to note that some true Sandboxes use the conventional system too.) if I want to be able to mine profitably at some point I know the only way I can do so, is mining. Therefore I'll go out and do what I really want to be doing (Mining) because I know it isn't a waste of time. It's advancing me toward a desirable end.

I still think the best system is to level your character over time, but as you reach levels it should open up many new possibilities. It should not encourage you to stack all of your merit badges into archery but instead when you reach ranger level 3 it opens up merit badges for sneaking, tracking, archery, and a choice of a limited number of skills from a list of many crafting skills. People who center their character entirely around crafting could get a choice of quite a few skills from a broad list of crafting skills. But I know I don't want to be forced to accept a weaker ranger, or cleric, or whatever I go with just because I want to be able to chop trees and build houses and inns, or possibly ships and carts. Nor do I want to have to wait an obscenely long time to do so effectively after I finish maxing my ranger. There should be SOME level of diversity you can have while leveling a character.

However if I want to be both a cleric and a ranger, or a ranger and barbarian or whatever. And by that I mean 20 levels ranger, 20 levels cleric as opposed to 20 levels ranger, or 10 levels ranger, 10 levels cleric... it should take twice as long.

I absolutely don't want to be at a massive stat disadvantage to some teenage dropout who does nothing but game all day. There are plenty of games like that out there already.


Andius wrote:

I think I know the point Marou is going for.

In EVE Online I invested most of my points into training Caldari ships, missiles, shielding, things that increased the amount/power (CPU and Powergrid for those of you familiar with EVE.) of things that I could equip etc.

Because of this I could power through a level 3 mission quickly and easily with little risk, or slowly and carefully power my way through a level 4 mission even though it was pretty risky. Both of these brought in pretty high profits.

Some of the time though, I logged in and all I really wanted to do was mine, or go exploring with my little probe ship.

Unfortunately, as I didn't have near as high of skills in mining or exploration, viewed both as a relative waste of time, and continued doing missions because the payout was better even though that isn't what I really wanted to be doing.

I just let my mining/exploration skills train knowing that someday I would be able to use them to the same effect. Unfortunately for me and EVE, I quit before that point ever came.

In a game like LotRO, or Darkfall, or Wurm, (I used those two as an example because I think that it is important to note that some true Sandboxes use the conventional system too.) if I want to be able to mine profitably at some point I know the only way I can do so, is mining. Therefore I'll go out and do what I really want to be doing (Mining) because I know it isn't a waste of time. It's advancing me toward a desirable end.

You nailed it. *bow*

Andius wrote:

I still think the best system is to level your character over time, but as you reach levels it should open up many new possibilities. It should not encourage you to stack all of your merit badges into archery but instead when you reach ranger level 3 it opens up merit badges for sneaking, tracking, archery, and a choice of a limited number of skills from a list of many crafting skills. People who center their character entirely around crafting could get a choice of quite a few skills from a broad list of crafting skills. But I know I don't want to be forced to accept a weaker ranger, or cleric, or whatever I go with just because I want to be able to chop trees and build houses and inns, or possibly ships and carts. Nor do I want to have to wait an obscenely long time to do so effectively after I finish maxing my ranger. There should be SOME level of diversity you can have while leveling a character.

However if I want to be both a cleric and a ranger, or a ranger and barbarian or whatever. And by that I mean 20 levels ranger, 20 levels cleric as opposed to 20 levels ranger, or 10 levels ranger, 10 levels cleric... it should take twice as long.

I absolutely don't want to be at a massive stat disadvantage to some teenage dropout who does nothing but game all day. There are plenty of games like that out there already.

I'd have zero problem with a system like that.

Goblin Squad Member

SO lets go about it this way. Lets give the skills a tier. Tier 1 skills will be your very basic knowledge <apprentice> of a skill, allowing you to actually be able to do the action. Tier 1 takes only an hour to train. Tier 2 would be a better working knowledge <craftsman> of the skill, allowing doing something a little complex with it. Tier 2 could take 4 hours to train. Tier 3 would bump you up being able to do everything the skill encompasus <journeyman>. This could take a full 24 hours to train. Tier 4 would be here you can create or do specailty things with the skill <Expert>. This would take a week or two. The top tier, tier 5 would be <master> of the skill. You can do extremely rare things with the skill.

So now lets begin with your new character. He goes through the starter area and rcieves his archtype and a skill set. In this skill set he has 3 archtype only skills and 2 other basic skills that he can choose. Now you decide you want to fish, que the skill. An hour later, your fishing. In this hour time you can buy supplies, find a spot, find a date to go with you. Now if you actually wanted to be good at it, you que tier 2 for it. in a total of 5 hours, you can do the normal basic things with it. In a use based system, you would just be grinding it for the 5 hours until it was high enough to do this. In time based, you could have be exploring for that specail fishing hole. Either way it takes you 5 hours to get to your enjoyeble point.

Or if you was just looking for something to do, it only took an hour. I am sure an hour away from your capstone wont be a killer.

Goblin Squad Member

Also, crafting and professions in the PnP version are class skills for every one. I don't see why they wouldn't be included into all the archtypes skill sets

Goblin Squad Member

I could see professions being parallel with 'General Education' credits in college. They are useless in your profession, though they give you a broader understanding of the world(in case you go on a TV quiz show!), and you have to do them to get a degree. Where your degree is an archetype badge.

Goblin Squad Member

Marou_ wrote:
I'd have zero problem with a system like that.

I think we can actually agree on that, it's more an idea of skills being closer to equal rather than X being better then Y. That goal overall can be accomplished say in archery just giving ballpark examples

Level 4
Double shot, fire 2 arrows at 2 targets, each dealing half normal

level 5. rain of arrows, deals 1/4th normal damage to a 20' circle

Level 6. Interupting shot. Arrow deals less than normal damage, but much higher chance to interupt spellcasting.

Just ballpark random things thrown out. Regular increase in versatility without necessarally greatly raising the damage in the way that if leveling up archer were, your arrows deal 1d6, next level 1d8 direct increase of power would do. In which a case it is far less critical to worry about not being 2.5 years into archer before starting working on leveling mining etc...

Goblin Squad Member

Andius wrote:
In EVE it takes a couple months to get to be a really good miner. It takes a few months to specialize in logistics. It takes a few months to get really good at flying a battle cruiser/command ship with group buff modules. It takes a few months to specialize at using probes. It takes a few months to specialize in research in development. It takes a few months to specialize at trading.

That's exactly correct. "A few months" to "specialize". However, during those months, you should not be doing nothing. You should be playing your character and learning how to best use all the new skills and gear you're incrementally able to use during that time. You don't flip a binary switch from "can't do this type of game play" to "master of this type of game play". It's a continuum that begins within hours of starting down a new path. Having the skill is just a part of what it takes to be good. You also need to practice using those skills and learn how to do the things your character is learning how to do. Many people think the skills are the gate to maximized fun, only to discover that it's really PLAYER SKILL, learned by doing, that makes the difference.

Quote:
My main was specialized in using a passive tanking drake. Some days I would log on and... all I really wanted to do was mine. However I could not mine efficiently enough for me to feel it was anything but a waste of time.

So you were skill training the requirements for the kind of mining you were interested in while spending time doing the thing you had already achieved specialization in with your Drake, right? So that a few months after you were good at one thing, you were equally good at two things, which made it even less boring to train up a 3rd thing. Etc. Right?

In other words, this is a problem which becomes less and less meaningful the longer you play.

Quote:
So the direct EVE system SERIOUSLY limits what you can do. It isn't fun to only experience one aspect of the game at a time.

The fun is the satisfaction of knowing that you didn't get to be über with ease and without effort or hard choices. Delayed gratification is still gratifying and for many people it is MORE fulfilling than instant gratification.

On the other hand, you COULD train up enough skill to kill some NPC pirates, and mine some low grade ore, and scan down some wormholes, and buy, transport and sell commodities for trade hubs to combat zones, all effectively at the same time. And thus be able to do.a bunch of stuff quickly, but at a low level, and then specialize as you find things that interest you. You wouldn't be über as quickly as the person who focused from day one, but you personally might feel at lot less. Ord and constrained.


Ryan Dancey wrote:
Andius wrote:
In EVE it takes a couple months to get to be a really good miner. It takes a few months to specialize in logistics. It takes a few months to get really good at flying a battle cruiser/command ship with group buff modules. It takes a few months to specialize at using probes. It takes a few months to specialize in research in development. It takes a few months to specialize at trading.

That's exactly correct. "A few months" to "specialize". However, during those months, you should not be doing nothing. You should be playing your character and learning how to best use all the new skills and gear you're incrementally able to use during that time. You don't flip a binary switch from "can't do this type of game play" to "master of this type of game play". It's a continuum that begins within hours of starting down a new path. Having the skill is just a part of what it takes to be good. You also need to practice using those skills and learn how to do the thi ga your character is learning how to do. Many people think the skills are the gate to maximized fun, only to discover that it's really PLAYER SKILL, learned by doing, that makes the difference.

Quote:
My main was specialized in using a passive tanking drake. Some days I would log on and... all I really wanted to do was mine. However I could not mine efficiently enough for me to feel it was anything but a waste of time.

So you were skill training the requirements for the kind of mining you were interested in while spending time doing the thing you had already achieved specialization in with your Drake, right? So that a few months after you were good at one thing, you were equally good at two things, which made it even less boring to train up a 3rd thing. Etc. Right?

In other words, this is a problem which becomes less and less meaningful the longer you play.

Quote:
So the direct EVE system SERIOUSLY limits what you can do. It isn't fun to only experience one aspect of the game at a time.
The fun is...

As he mentioned, he didn't continue playing. The fact that you just equated Eve mining to requiring any type of player skill seriously just made me facepalm. I choked on my coffee. A mentally handicapped stuffed animal can mine in Eve.

Goblin Squad Member

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Marou_ wrote:
The fact that you just equated Eve mining to requiring any type of player skill seriously just made me facepalm. I choked on my coffee. A mentally handicapped stuffed animal can mine in Eve.

Sure, once you've mastered the art of picking a good mining location, learned how to time jetcan expirations (and what a jetcan is, and why you use them, and what the risks are of using them), gotten your tank fine tuned vs. the NPCs you're going to attract, learned how to monitor the scanner for PC pirates, gotten your comms and procedures down with your hauler and overwatch teammates, made running for safety instinctive, learned how to judge the best place to take your ore for processing and sale (and how to monitor changing market conditions regularly so you stay aware of trending), learned about all the various tech level and meta level equipment you could fit to your ship and determined the best config (always changing of course based on patches, nerfs, your PC skills, your cash assets, etc.), mastered the insurance system so you know when to re-insure, mastered the clone system so you know how to protect yourself against being podded, learned what to do when your favorite systems get infested with bots, or pirates, or Goons...

Yeah, then a monkey can do it.

Goblin Squad Member

Ryan Dancey wrote:
Yeah, then a monkey can do it.

A friend of mine used to pilot a mining barge(?) as part of a mining corp. I've heard that same speech from him that Ryan just gave.

A possibility to consider!

This game isn't about character progression.

Thoughts?


Skwiziks wrote:


A possibility to consider!

This game isn't about character progression.

Thoughts?

An RPG that's not about character progression? Um.. I don't think so.

Goblin Squad Member

Maybe it's better to say the focus of the game isn't on character progression.


Skwiziks wrote:
Maybe it's better to say the focus of the game isn't on character progression.

Everything in the game is related to character progression. Your ability to kill, trade, socialize, produce, conquer, they all tie to character progression, making it a pivotal facet of the game, just like pretty much every RPG.

Goblin Squad Member

@Skwiziks, are you talking about Eve or PFO when you say "this game"?

@Marou_, just curious, but would it make a difference to you if you had several channels in which to train skills simultaneously? I've been going back and forth on whether I think it's a good idea or not. Basically, if the skills are grouped into major categories like General, Adventuring, Harvesting, Crafting, maybe we could train in all four categories simultaneously. Seems like a bit of perspective shifting might be in order - a la WoW's Rest XP. Maybe PFO should just multiply all Skill Training times by 4, but give us 4 active channels. It would probably make a lot of people happier (except the people who want to focus only on Adventuring, or only on Crafting, etc.)

*shrugs*


I believe your character's skills should be a by-product of the ways in which you play. If you favor a sword in combat, naturally your ability with said weapon should be better than say with a staff. This way, you focus on playing the game the way you find most enjoyable, the way the game feels most natural, not the way you PLAN will be fun. Skills should ENHANCE your play style, not determine it.

Goblin Squad Member

Nihimon wrote:

@Skwiziks, are you talking about Eve or PFO when you say "this game"?

@Marou_, just curious, but would it make a difference to you if you had several channels in which to train skills simultaneously? I've been going back and forth on whether I think it's a good idea or not. Basically, if the skills are grouped into major categories like General, Adventuring, Harvesting, Crafting, maybe we could train in all four categories simultaneously. Seems like a bit of perspective shifting might be in order - a la WoW's Rest XP. Maybe PFO should just multiply all Skill Training times by 4, but give us 4 active channels. It would probably make a lot of people happier (except the people who want to focus only on Adventuring, or only on Crafting, etc.)

*shrugs*

I could swing with that. I would do it this way though.

Standard Set-up:
Combat Skill (Things that help with ranged/melee attacks or spell casting.)
Utility Skill (Things like jumping, swimming, move silently search etc.)
Utility Skill
Crafting Skill

You could change the setup though. You have a maximum of 1 Combat slot, and a minimum of one utility slot and one crafting slot BUT you could change it to things like the following.

Utility Skill
Crafting Skill
Crafting Skill
Crafting Skill

Combat Skill
Utility Skill
Crafting Skill
Crafting Skill

And a really BAD combo that would be possible. :P

Utility Skill
Utility Skill
Utility Skill
Crafting Skill

The single crafting skill is so nobody ever feels like they have to give up all crafting to be the best fighter. Obviously the best adventurers will only take one crafting slot but people can give up combat entirely to make a pure crafter who puts their utility in something like riding or haggling. You might make so you can change things on the fly, so say if you have one slot training combat or empty, you can fill the others with either crafting or utility skills as long as you don't fill all three with the same kind. That way once I start feeling like I have plenty of utility skills I can train more crafting skills.

Goblin Squad Member

@Nihimon, if you do multiple channels, why not just let people allocate a fractions of their available skill training time to different skills?

If you want to do 25% to one skill in each of general, adventuring, harvesting, and crafting, that's fine. And if I want to do 10% to one combat skill, 15% to another combat skill, and 75% to some key crafting skill, and that could be fine, too. We'd open skills the same, just not one at a time. (I assume we'd both need to have the prerequisites for each skill we train.)

@stealthbr, With merit badges, it will work that way. If you have the theory behind the sword (skill training time), you get better (earn the badge and bonus) by using it. If you don't understand theory, you'll be limited. If you never practice the theory you learned, you'll be limited. I think it's rational.

Silver Crusade Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'd rather we keep training focused. We need a strong robust economy, which focuses on division of labor. Lets keep the dedicated careers.

Goblin Squad Member

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
I'd rather we keep training focused. We need a strong robust economy, which focuses on division of labor. Lets keep the dedicated careers.

Some people just want to craft sometimes even if they are generally a fighter. And in a game with as much to do as this one I would prefer to keep one character. It isn't like I won't be busy.

I don't mind if there are dedicated crafters who could train farming, cooking, brewing, logging, construction and animal husbandry all the same time so they can go out and build their own farm, and make food from their harvests, but I think a cleric should be able to take mining and masonry to build a temple, or a ranger take logging and bowyery. I personally want to take logging and construction so I can make log buildings, or possibly ships and carts.

D&D is filled with combat characters with side professions, and we should have them. Either make dedicated crafters able to do more, or don't have them at all. Crafting is a really fun relaxing activity for days when you have just had enough killing stuff, and I don't want specialization getting in the way of that.

Goblin Squad Member

@stealthbr, you're exactly right on that, but it's not exactly my point.

@Nihimon, both really.

Let me see if I can articulate this better.

EVE is a game about piloting a starship, and doing whatever you can/want for fortune and glory in a mostly lawless galaxy.

WOW is a game about following (or ignoring) a storyline that changes as you progress further in the game. To do this, you go on adventures (perhaps with friends), grow stronger, and collect/make better equipment.

SWTOR is a game about going on adventures, doing PvP, and experiencing a deep storyline while your character grows stronger and gets/makes better and better equipment.

-----------------------

It doesn't seem like for EVE, and by extension other games (PFO) that use time-based skill increases, that character progression is a core part of why the game is played. Yes, you unlock the ability to perform certain actions by spending real-world time training skills. Yes, it takes a long time to specialize in anything. However, it does not take very long to be able to do something.

I only played EVE for two weeks, as part of the free trial. During that time I mined, refined, bought and sold on the market, did PvE combat, ran PvE missions, got forced into PvP combat (died horribly), hauled cargo, manufactured goods, fooled around with a variety of ship fits and modules, scanned areas for resources with probes, and did a lot of exploring. If there had been people I wanted to play with, and more time outside of school and work, I would have kept playing, and kept experimenting until I found something I wanted to specialize in.

tl;dr To me, PFO isn't about making the best character. It isn't about leveling up your character. It's about making your mark on a (currently) small corner of The River Kingdoms in whatever way you see fit.

Changing the game mechanics so that everything I do is directly related to the progression of my character is not the kind of game I want to play. That sounds like too much stress.

Silver Crusade Goblin Squad Member

To *you* crafting is a relaxing activity after killing stuff. For some, crafting and running a business *is* the game. If you want it as a relaxing part time job, spend a short time training it, and run a low end shop selling arrows or some such. But please, don't deny crafters their own segment of the game. Much of the discussion here seems to be that players want their characters to do all things, and they want to do them all *now*. I actually welcome a game with delayed gratification.

Goblin Squad Member

Urman wrote:
@Nihimon, if you do multiple channels, why not just let people allocate a fractions of their available skill training time to different skills?

The problem is human psychology. If it is possible to spend 100% of training time working towards a single goal, then there will be people who feel that this is an unbearably strong incentive, and they will feel like they are cheating that goal if they ever train anything else, and will then complain that they can't do anything else. Requiring them to diversify will avoid making them feel like they're "missing out" if they diversify.

And I think it would be very problematic to allow more than one Adventuring or Crafting skill to be trained simultaneously.

Goblin Squad Member

@Skwiziks, I get you. You're saying that character progression (advancement, leveling) is not the focus of the game.

Goblin Squad Member

@Nihimon, yup. Heh, you put it a lot more simply than my rant.

Overall, the developers of the game seem to want to keep player power-levels fairly even, make the pacing of advancement slow, and keep the rate of progression equal for all characters.

I feel that players should be encouraged to specialize, but not discouraged from trying other things. Having more than one skill-track could be a fair change. Maybe only have two or three, don't restrict what can be trained, but the secondary and tertiary tracks train slower than the primary one, with the tertiary track being the slowest. Easy specialization in more than one sphere, however, could unbalance the economy.

Goblin Squad Member

Nihimon wrote:
And I think it would be very problematic to allow more than one Adventuring or Crafting skill to be trained simultaneously.

If Left-Handed Basket Weaving takes 16 hours to train before use and Right-Handed Basket Weaving takes another 16 hours, and neither is the precursor for the other, does it really matter to you if I learn them in series or in parallel?

It makes more sense for *me* to learn one at a time, so I can use one as soon as I unlock it. Likewise, your proposal to split skill training 4 ways would mean *my* skills remained locked 4 times as long. If I could apportion skill training time, I'd put 100% into one skill at a time, so I can use them as soon as they unlock. :)

Goblin Squad Member

@Urman, again, my concern is about perceptions. If it's possible to double up on Adventuring or Crafting skills, then there is a segment of the player base who will feel like they have to or they're missing out. The general idea is to force them to diversify.

Generally, I'm more into player choice. But if that choice doesn't feel like a choice, then something probably needs to change. The only way I can think to fix it is to force them to choose another skill track that gets trained simultaneously with their Adventuring track, so that they're not missing out on their Adventuring track when they diversify into crafting or something else.

There are "pure crafters" who won't care about the Adventuring track, and who will be upset if adventurer's can get just as good at crafting even while they're still training their adventuring skills. Maybe a true "pure crafter" archetype that trains skills in the Adventuring track really is a good idea.

It's a difficult problem to balance :)

Goblin Squad Member

Some people want to have feet in two/all camps, and others want to specialize in one.

Hopefully GW gives us a game that is good enough that the adventurer track; the crafter track; the harvesting track; the social/general track; and mixes of those tracks are all legitimate and fun ways to play the game. If they do that, then the players should be able to pick their paths.

Goblin Squad Member

Alexander_Damocles wrote:
To *you* crafting is a relaxing activity after killing stuff. For some, crafting and running a business *is* the game. If you want it as a relaxing part time job, spend a short time training it, and run a low end shop selling arrows or some such. But please, don't deny crafters their own segment of the game. Much of the discussion here seems to be that players want their characters to do all things, and they want to do them all *now*. I actually welcome a game with delayed gratification.

This game should have a lot of skills based on what we know about it so far. We know it is a medieval fantasy sandbox in which you can create structures, and apparently wagons are confirmed now as well. Let me go down a brief list of crafting skills that are are fairly likely to result in such a game.

Blacksmithing (Tools, parts for structures etc.)
Weapon-smithing
Armor-smithing
Mining
Logging
Carpentry
Masonry
Bow-making/Fletching
Skinning/Butchery
Tailoring
Farming
Taming/Breeding
Fishing
Botany
Alchemy/Potion Making
Jewelry Making
Enchanting
Shipbuilding
Cooking
Brewing
Engineering (For catapults and other siege weapons)
Writing/Scroll Scribing
Trap-making

Probably more things I'm not thinking about...

As stated earlier, in a game where training skills = time based and not skill based I'm not just simply going to "Invest a bit of time into making arrows or something." When I am a top rate adventure/soldier why would I want to be a excuse my French but... half assed crafter. I'm wasting my time if I am not making profits somewhat comparable to what I can get adventuring. A huge portion of the fun of crafting is creating something valuable and useful. Otherwise we would have skills like hair-ball and pet-rock crafting.

It is not too much to ask to be able to function fully in a couple crafting skills while still training our main profession. If full on crafters are given access to a wider array of crafting skills and yet they still can't compete with some adventurers and their part time crafting businesses well......... That doesn't say much for their business sense.

Requiring people to divert a significant amount of time away from their main profession to train a side-hobby in a game where we are told we won't be seeing max level characters of any class for over two years... it will absolutely kill the game for anyone who wants even somewhat of a well rounded experience without rolling a second character.

I have no problem with dedicated crafters but I don't want to miss out on a huge portion of the game by being rendered so totally ineffective at it that it isn't worth my time... because they can't handle some light competition.

Asking for a ranger that can skin their kills and make armor from the skins is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a sorcerer that can gather natural components and create potions is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a wizard that can scribe scrolls and enchant items is not is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a dwarven paladin that can mine and make armor is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a fighter that can mine and smith blades is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a bard that can farm and brew liquor is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a rouge that can mine and make traps is not asking for a character that can do everything. Asking for a cleric that can mine and do masonry in order to build a temple is not asking for a character that can do everything.

I think I've made my point.

Goblin Squad Member

@Andius

Two and a half years might kill the game for you but not for all. I dream of the day that a developer finally designs a game to be played for more then a year, I dream of a day when I can play an mmo that doesn't just hand me everything within a month or two.

Ryan has no desire to appease the masses, he's looking for long term success not mmo of the month club. He has seen the success of a small indie development team slowly grow by word of mouth and not by storming Time Square with choreographed hype.

If I could spend two and a half years on one character I would be in heaven, and to get to know the players that surround me, their names have meaning and stories attached.

I can't wait to try something different! I remember reading in a blog that the only real innovation we will see in an MMO in the next 10yrs will most likely come from a small Indie Developer willing to take risks and turn the typical MMO development upside down.

Silver Crusade Goblin Squad Member

And they can certainly do that. If they invest the time in doing so. If someone wants to spend all their time crafting, they can. If someone wants to be a pure adventurer, they can. If you want to be a hybrid, you can. It all takes times. Requiring others is the only way to make a true community.

Goblin Squad Member

BlackUhuru wrote:

@Andius

Two and a half years might kill the game for you but not for all. I dream of the day that a developer finally designs a game to be played for more then a year, I dream of a day when I can play an mmo that doesn't just hand me everything within a month or two.

Ryan has no desire to appease the masses, he's looking for long term success not mmo of the month club. He has seen the success of a small indie development team slowly grow by word of mouth and not by storming Time Square with choreographed hype.

If I could spend two and a half years on one character I would be in heaven, and to get to know the players that surround me, their names have meaning and stories attached.

I can't wait to try something different! I remember reading in a blog that the only real innovation we will see in an MMO in the next 10yrs will most likely come from a small Indie Developer willing to take risks and turn the typical MMO development upside down.

A great MMO is about having content that makes you want to log in and not an endless grind AKA what I like to call artificial content. I could get the best ship and gear in Freelancer within five hours and yet I put in thousands of hours over five years.

Pathfinder does not need to be like Freelancer. For one it removes the grind from grinding, so I'm fine with a bit of grind. But what we are talking about is an over the top entirely unnecessary limitation of content that is inconsistent with D&D/Pathfinder. Both of which allow you to level in a profession as you level your character.

Giving a character one or two professions does NOT destroy the need for community and working together. So I can make armor and mine the metal I need to do so. What about melee weapons? Ranged? Holy Symbols? What if the armor requires leather as well? What if I need a building to sell it from or a method of transporting it such as a cart or ship? What am I going to eat? Drink? What will I sleep in? What if I need potions? Spell Scrolls?

In EVE, the manufacturing skills allow you to make guns, ammo, ships, shield and armor modifications really ANY modification. Practically everything you can produce works of the same few manufacturing skills, and most of it is produced from materials gathered exclusively by miners. Yet that game has a complex economy with many people working together. In this game there is likely to be MANY crafting skills, and many forms of resources needed to make them. Why would you think that giving one or two of those skills to an adventurer would hand them the game too quickly or kill the need for community? Those adventurers are going to be out fighting and exploring a large percentage of their time. They aren't going to have time run you off the market.

So you want to roleplay a farmer or a smith. Cool I get it. But your doing so should not limit someone from being able to do a bit of crafting WITHOUT having to seriously gimp themselves in combat.

Fighting and adventuring is fun, but when the town is safe, most my group is logged off, and all I want to do chop trees and work on boats for the night, I don't want to have to log into another character. I don't want to have to switch skill training so that the next time I group up with my friends I'm dragging down the group, and I don't want to just go farm mobs. ESPECIALLY if I am a class designed mainly for support like say, a bard. Who the heck wants to go solo on a bard?

It's not like I am asking to chop trees, plant a farm, raise some animals, cook some food, brew some beer, go mining, make a sword, make some armor, make a holy symbol, and mix up a few potions while I am at it.


Andius says it perfectly. To truly experience a sandbox game, you need to be able to engage in a variety of activities. You do not have to be the best at all of them, that is not the point. The point is being able to do something other than your one set path and not feel like it is completely worthless, as well as not hampering the progress of your chosen role.

I am also wondering if I am reading Ryan's posts correctly, because he is coming off as defensive. I see that he is CEO of GW and I would think that most game creators would want feed back on potential flaws in their system or from people who want to play their game.

As a side note, even CCP acknowledges that their skill system is flawed for a wider base of players. It is great for the hardcore people but can be daunting and tedious to more normal gamers who want to see a variety of content. Which is why they are taking the EVE system and tweaking it for WoD. They are adding elements of casual gameplay to the sandbox that sit along side the hardcore elements that do not require any skill investments. They are calling these Coffee Shop elements.

Would I still be playing EVE if I had the ability to run around and do other things that weren't game changing and felt productive and or enjoyable while waiting on skills to finish out? Yes.


Andius wrote:
I don't want to have to switch skill training so that the next time I group up with my friends I'm dragging down the group, and I don't want to just go farm mobs. ESPECIALLY if I am a class designed mainly for support like say, a bard. Who the heck wants to go solo on a bard?

This, x100

Aeinna wrote:
Would I still be playing EVE if I had the ability to run around and do other things that weren't game changing and felt productive and or enjoyable while waiting on skills to finish out? Yes.

And I agree absolutely with this statement.

-----------------------------------------------------

That really nails down the problem with how things work in Eve, and hopefully won't work in PFO. Anything else I said at this point would be superfluous.

Goblin Squad Member

Have 2 training channels. Channel 1 trains 3 times as fast as Channel 2. Divide skills into domains Adventuring, Crafting, and Other (Utility & Harvesting). Players can train a domain in only one channel at a time.

Pure crafters are training their crafting at 3 times the rate adventurers will be able to train their crafting.

Players like Andius and Marou_ (and quite probably me, if I'm being honest) would be able to diversify into crafting without feeling like we're gimping our adventuring.

Goblin Squad Member

Aeinna wrote:
I am also wondering if I am reading Ryan's posts correctly, because he is coming off as defensive. ...I would think that most game creators would want feed back on potential flaws in their system or from people who want to play their game.

While it's nice to get clarification on the GW blog entries, Ryan doesn't need to address specific issues that people might have had in other games. His posts here should be prepared and vetted with as much care as the GW blog posts. It's fun to have him engage, but he risks getting off message.

Forum posters are a small subset of the most vocal players; they likely play more than the great majority of GWs target audience for example. It's nice to think that there will be some mining of these threads for creative ideas. But mostly GW needs to rely on their knowledge of games, the gamer market and their vision for the product. Giving much weight to forums for feedback would be like designing an orc by committee. And a committee made up of a small and unrepresentative number of your potential clients.

[I try to stay optimistic in my posts, though. If these forums just contain "this game will suck if things aren't done my way!" posts, I pity the GW designers that have to wade thru angst and depression to mine for a few choice ideas. So keep at it, Ryan and crew - your work is important to us!]

Goblin Squad Member

Aeinna wrote:
I am also wondering if I am reading Ryan's posts correctly, because he is coming off as defensive. ...I would think that most game creators would want feed back on potential flaws in their system or from people who want to play their game.

He want's suggestions for improvements, not to be told that he should make a different game. I would be defensive if people where telling me i was doing something wrong and also.

The only valid issue so far is: Knowing how long training is going to take. Everything else is pure speculation.

We have no idea how character advancement is going to really work. We know not all merit badges are going to be based on skill training, and some will probably be mostly usage requirements, such as: 'Use your sword on 100 different enemies'

We really need a full skill progression map, training time equations, and merit badge tree before we make real judgement on the system.

Goblin Squad Member

It would be different if the complaints that were being made about time-based skill progression hadn't already been considered and discussed in the blog.

If you genuinely want to make an impact on Ryan's decision-making, show him something he hasn't already considered, or show him a way to accomplish his stated goals with a different solution that doesn't have the problems you're concerned about.


Nihimon wrote:


It would be different if the complaints that were being made about time-based skill progression hadn't already been considered and discussed in the blog.

If you genuinely want to make an impact on Ryan's decision-making, show him something he hasn't already considered, or show him a way to accomplish his stated goals with a different solution that doesn't have the problems you're concerned about.

I wasn't aware the that pitfalls of encouraging heavy specialization and not allowing parallel/off time skill advancement had been addressed. Can you show me where?

Also, keep in mind none of us know what the Pathfinder final system will look like. We're describing all of the issues that kept us from enjoying the EvE system. We're talking about all those flaws so that perhaps a future dev blog or maybe even a forum post will say, "Yeah, we see what you and CCP acknowledge is wrong with the Eve system, we have some novel ideas to address those types of concerns." The alternative being "you're a pooty head, deal with it or go away." which is fine too.

I'm the type of person that when I get excited about a game (which is rare) I get a bunch of other people excited about the game, because I relay to a wide variety of slightly less hardcore gamers distilled information.

I'm excited about Pathfinder. The concerns and temperance to that excitement are the possibility of flawed systems based on assumptions of how things will work based on blog and forum posts by Goblinworks.

If PFO shipped with a straight up copy of Eve's system it'd be a game I played every once in awhile; but that would be too hardcore and content limited to satisfy my short attention span, which may be 20-30 hours of time a week, but it split over multiple game types.

At the most basic level I'm a PvP player. In a game that has PvP that's what I spend 80% of my time doing once I'm established. That other 20% of the time I want to do other things. A system just like Eve tells me if I want to be the best at what I do the most often, I can't do anything else. This vastly limits the lasting appeal of Eve to me, and any game that straight up copies Eve's system.

Goblin Squad Member

Marou_ wrote:
I wasn't aware the that pitfalls of encouraging heavy specialization and not allowing parallel/off time skill advancement had been addressed. Can you show me where?

Sure. It's in the blog Your Pathfinder Online Character.

First, under the heading "The Standard Models", there's a discussion of use-based advancement, and its pitfalls.

Quote:

The second common MMO design tries to capture a more "realistic" development process where characters become better at doing things by doing them repeatedly: when you swing a sword enough, you get better at sword swinging. This is system was used in the first successful mass market MMO, Ultima Online, and it's the system you'll find in the record-breaking single-player RPG Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. One problem with these kinds of systems is that they often encourage very strange behavior as characters do the thing needed to improve a skill even if doing it makes no sense, like jumping constantly while moving anywhere, or continuously firing spells off into the sky. At the far end of this behavior are macros and bots—software programs that take control of a character and have it do boring repetitive actions on behalf of a human player who is off doing something else with their life. This tends to break the immersive experience for players who are trying to engage with the game "normally."

A major problem with both of these solutions is that people who play more often have characters that are fundamentally better than those of people who play less. There's nothing less fun than finding out that the buddies you introduced to a cool MMO have out-leveled your PC, and you can't adventure with them anymore unless they choose to join you in content that is boring for them, or you play with them in content where your character is unlikely to be effective and is likely to die a lot.

Then, under the heading of "The Eve Model", there's discussion of the downsides of the way Eve did things.

Quote:
There are a couple of downsides to the EVE system. First, it's pretty confusing, especially for new players. Figuring out how all the skills, bonuses, gear, and benefits interact is daunting. The system has been constantly developed for more than a decade and it is rich, deep, and complex. It rewards those who take the time to master its intricacies, but that complexity can be a barrier to entry for the player who just wants a more casual experience. Second, even if you do understand the system it can be a challenge to figure out "how to get from here to there"—that is, in what order to train skills to both maximize the value of the training and to engage in a fun way with the game while the skills are trained. There are lots of helpful advice sites that try to give some guidance in this process, but the sheer complexity of the system means there's no "right" answer for most players.

Note specifically the acknowledgement that "... it can be a challenge to figure out... [how] to engage in a fun way with the game while the skills are trained."

Goblin Squad Member

Marou_ wrote:
... if I want to be the best at what I do the most often, I can't do anything else.

I've offered a potential solution a couple of times that you haven't really commented on.

Would it be acceptable to you if everyone was forced to diversify a little bit, by spending maybe 10% of their training time training something outside of their archetype? That way, you could spend 10% of your time training other stuff, but wouldn't feel like you were missing out on your archetype training because you couldn't spend that time training your archetype skills anyway.


I've read that post a few times. The specific scenario that renders Eve an occasional foray for me is simple.

If I train 80% of the time in PvP centric skills and 20% of the time in misc activities, I will lose 100% of the time to Marou's richer twin who has 2 accounts, 1 a master craftsman, and 1 dedicated 100% to PvP centric skills.

In a game with really drawn out advancement (like EvE or PFO) this becomes a far larger issue than it is in some less grindy game where you can cap a character out in 2 months.

Nihimon wrote:
Would it be acceptable to you if everyone was forced to diversify a little bit, by spending maybe 10% of their training time training something outside of their archetype? That way, you could spend 10% of your time training other stuff, but wouldn't feel like you were missing out on your archetype training because you couldn't spend that time training your archetype skills anyway.

That seems a flawed solution, much like a "time tax" on people with a much more one track mind than mine. So, even though for me personally it would be a nice touch, I can't say it would be good design.

Goblin Squad Member

The game doesn't encourage heavy specialization from any information we have been given. Everyone is acting like the capstone ability is some god-like power that will severity gimp you if you don't get it.

For all we know a capstone could be no more than a visual addition. Such as a new tier of cooler looking equipment templates(looks, not stats), or glowing eyes.

The one thing that is commonly stated is that in PFO: Time = Options

blog wrote:
(A character can train in many other skills outside of their archetype skill tree and still progress towards the capstone ability—they just need to avoid training in the skill tree of a different archtype. Don't worry—if you accidentally start to train a skill tree outside your archetype, you'll be warned, the consequences will be explained, and you'll have a chance to change that decision before it's irrevocable!)

Goblin Squad Member

Alright, 193 posts later, regardless of the actual system, I think we can all agree that the inability to make multidimensional characters in PFO would be a bad thing, right?


Valkenr wrote:

The game doesn't encourage heavy specialization from any information we have been given.

A game with PvP by it's nature encourages heavy specialization. If you are diversified and you lose by 2 blows to someone who isn't and is your exact arcetype, you are a better player. Your in-game handicap of having a less optimal build caused you to lose. You will lose forever to this player because this is a time based system. That isn't satisfying PvP.

Goblin Squad Member

@Marou_, just in case you missed it while you were replying to my other post, I'm very interested to hear your answer to my question in this post.

Silver Crusade Goblin Squad Member

Marou_ wrote:
Valkenr wrote:

The game doesn't encourage heavy specialization from any information we have been given.

A game with PvP by it's nature encourages heavy specialization. If you are diversified and you lose by 2 blows to someone who isn't and is your exact arcetype, you are a better player. Your in-game handicap of having a less optimal build caused you to lose. You will lose forever to this player because this is a time based system. That isn't satisfying PvP.

Thankfully, we have the RNG to make contests vary by a bit. Also, how many times must we or the developers say that time =/= power?

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