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Latest Comments by Colombo
Open source game engine 'OpenMW' for Morrowind has been updated
11 December 2017 at 9:10 am UTC

slaapliedjeOblivion and newer they added auto-scaling of creatures. So you can go anywhere at the beginning will still have lower level enemies.

That is not true, not true at all. Autoscaling was there since maybe Arena, for sure from Dagerfall.

Problem was mostly in design philosophy.

There are basically two branches of design, as seen by people. One is fun roller-coaster, construct system in a way to allow player be constantly challenged.

The other is basically pre-created world.

First can feel a bit artificial and when you screw the balance, it is BAD.

Second can have a lot of boring places, some people don't like when they play the game "incorrectly", become too strong and then complain that they don't have any challenge and game is too easy. This approach is problematic especially when game is very linear. Different builds can have different strengths and without way to get some extra XP, player can become stranded, unable to defeat next encounter, but having a no way to get his character stronger.

Morrowind is the later approach, Oblivion and Skyrim the former. So like Gothic, Morrowind has a plenty of characters premade and put into locations by hand. Characters are generally not levelled dungeons and so on. Still, there are random encounters (in outside as well as in dungeons). Those are leveled. But each creature and each location have some level range. Some creatures will not spawn if you are far away from their level. Some will level you only in their level range, i.e.:

range 8-13. Which means that if you are below 8, monster would be in level 8 (if it spawns at all) and if you are above 13, monster will be on level 13 (if it spawns at all, again).

However generally, unlike Oblivion and Skyrim, Morrowind was "broken" by design. Level didn't mean a lot and Morrowind provided PLENTY of powerful ways (magical items, potions, training and powerful armours and weapons if you know where to find them) how to deal with enemies.

Oblivion on the other hand was broken by balance. The used system is not significantly different than Morrowind. Problem was that they tried to make it more important and provide the roll-coaster feeling for players, but they screwed balance and monsters leveled with player all the time. In addition, their power usually (unless you played super-efficient) grew more quickly than player. Which made game actually easier if you didn't level at all. In addition, all equip was autoleveled as well. This means even the almost-unique armours like ebony, daedric and glass were quite common, glass in particular, as light armour, was present on every single random bandit. Oblivion removed a lot of freedom and "exploits" from Morrowind, so it wasn't that easy to combat those overleveled monsters.

They realized it and in Skyrim, they got rid of most of their system completely. Skyrim got rid of all the useless stats and instead put there perks, which can work better for specialization and creation of interesting characters. Unfortunately, they botched it again my making plenty of perks boring. The autolevel was also much better, leveling weapons and armour as well. However, leveling monsters was done in a bit boring way (not that anyone else figured how to make it better), their AI is usually poor and thus monsters have to rise in both HP and DMG. Which makes them bullet sponges. This makes every character slowly approach the master class: archer assassin. Which through sneak attack and hiding back can deal with those bullet sponges. Still, if you don't try to play it on legendary, its fine. Especially if you have immortal followers who can soak some attacks. Or you are summoner.

Steam now has a form of platform-specific wishlisting, to help developers see demand
7 December 2017 at 10:34 pm UTC

What about this:

Preferred system setting:
1. If not set, estimate from the most common platform AND/OR from setting in store.
2. If set, THIS system is the preferred system.
-- This enable to have auto-detection of this setting, but it can still be overruled by user preference.

1. Wishlist works like shopping list. Therefore direct unfiltered connection to non-wanted platforms is bad.
2. So either create more structured wishlist or special button.
3. In either case, special buttons/settings needs to be available. "I wish this was for my platform". Other stats can be also present as well, like "I wish this had DLCs, I wish this had sequels, I wish this had multiplayer, I wish this was in X sale". If small, but informative number of cases are present (providing options from which people decide is quite complex thing and many questionaries fail to make it limited and comprehensive at the same time), devs could have a powerful tool to find potential buyer.

This however needs structured wishlist that would enabled greying-out games that don't follow current conditions.

So what we have? Two powerful stats.
1. How many players have your game but don't play it because it is not on their preferred platform?
2. How many players play this game, but have different preferred platform?
3. How many players wish for this game, but only if it was cheaper (i.e., waiting for sale, number of customers that wished game to be cheaper vs number of customers that bought that game when it was cheaper could be an interesting stat).
4. How many players wish for this game, but need feature X/platform.

Steam now has a form of platform-specific wishlisting, to help developers see demand
7 December 2017 at 1:14 am UTC

Someone who developed this function couldn't think 5 minutes ahead.

Dominions 5 - Warriors of the Faith, the latest deep 4x turn based strategy game is now out
1 December 2017 at 6:11 am UTC

QuoteThere is no AI diplomacy

Technically, AI recognize war and sometimes it will declare war against you.

But the "no diplomacy" ai kind of resemble the shit you get in multiplayer, when everyone breaks the non-aggresion-pact and gangbang on you because you are ur and thats free land.

Dominions 5 - Warriors of the Faith, the latest deep 4x turn based strategy game is now out
1 December 2017 at 12:18 am UTC

razing32Dominions 4 always got stuck for me when the AI did its turn.
I poke a bit at Dominions 3 since it works and seems to have more nations to play.

That's likely a deadlock in the multithreaded AI. One can disable that feature with a command lime switch.

Would one care to share said command ?

Just read the manual:
--multiai X Create up to X processes for AI computations (0=off). This switch only works on Linux and Mac. It cannot be used in Windows.

Dominions 5 - Warriors of the Faith, the latest deep 4x turn based strategy game is now out
30 November 2017 at 10:03 pm UTC

TheSHEEEPIt is a great game, no doubt.
However, as an owner of Dom3, Dom4 and CoE4 (Conquest of Elysium), I feel kinda ripped off here.

Dom5 is more of a slightly expanded Dom4 with not-too-many changes. And such a price for that seems way out of line.
Especially considering they haven't touched the series' biggest shortcomings - no AI diplomacy making single player almost entirely useless and the UI is still just terrible.

I think they should offer owners of the previous games some deal as other developers have.
If you're new to the series, though, the price should actually be worth it.

This is just crazy talk. Dom4 and Dom5 have HUGE changes.

1. New bless system significantly change game. You don't have just 2 bless effects per parth, you have 7 bless effects per path and you can point-buy those that you want, greatly personalize and specialize your bless.

This together with pretender getting bless effect in their dominion, some strong bless effects working only if your pretender is alive and new (minor) banish change, which now get part of the path effects is HUGE change that significantly change gameplay and adds load of new possible builds.

2. The new combat system, which is now "realtime" instead of "turn-based" in the sense that both sides act at the same time (each unit based on initiative) and not one side and after that second side... this greatly change how turns are played, remove annoying positioning which decided who will get first attack... supposedly boost cavalry (which is good, because it was a bit weaker). This connected with other combat changes (rebalance of weapon length, rebalance of critical hits, rebalance of fatigue) changes how troops fight and push it from meta "hire those who have longest weapon". Also, there is significant buff to archers, where bows benefit from increased strength. So giant archers are now better, because the gold that you pay for the giant chassis will now reflect its greater DMG.

3. New fort and recruitment system also changes dynamics. Suddenly, you don't need to build fort at once, but you first build palisade and then add another level. As you need, cheaper and safer. But a lot of mages that were earlier recruitable without fort take longer to recruit, while fort-only commanders are much easier to recruit.

4. New movement system. Now you can move more than one province at once. Even in enemy territory. Raiding with cavalry or fast units is now much easier. This is significant change in dynamics.

The Linux-powered Ataribox Joystick has been revealed, looks delightfully retro and rather stylish
28 November 2017 at 12:46 am UTC Likes: 4

Would be fun if Ataribox was sneaky Steambox, where Valve is trying a bit different concept of Steambox, with specific brand image and specific target group. Get more traction on linux gaming platform, have have number of support staff that can solve linux-specific issues before they roll out with more general-use box.

Crusader Kings II and Europa Universalis IV to both receive expansions in November
1 November 2017 at 10:05 pm UTC

ColomboYes? If a game's not in a state I think I'll enjoy at the moment I buy it, no sale. I'm not going to bank on it changing in the future. If it does, great; more bonus for me. If not, I got exactly what I expected to get.

Good for you, but this isn't the case for majority of people. Why I am so sure about this assumptions? Just look at the damn gaming in past years!

Kickstarter, early access, people praising active devs that respond to people and fix stuff constantly. Steam reviews.

Kickstarter is the best example, because it basically set X_current = 0 (since release is a bad descriptor) and it all depends on perceived value after some time T multiplied by trust in dev.

Early access is in similar state. Just listen to people buying into half-finished game which promised continuous update and then look at how review trashed after dev stopped updating stuff for a while and look at forum of that game to see all the complains.

Or just look how important is reputation of dev studios.

Crusader Kings II and Europa Universalis IV to both receive expansions in November
31 October 2017 at 9:45 pm UTC

Quoteand I doubt more than a tiny fraction of other people do

You can doubt that, but you will be wholly incorrect to think it is only tiny fraction of people.

Lets make a small mental exercise, a model if you like:

Assume game from dev who will provide post-release support

1. Game is released, there are some bugs. Lets name perceived value at this state X_release

2. You know that game will be patched and bugs corrected, maybe a subsystem or two reworked a bit and improved. Lets name perceived value after all the bug fixing as X_supported. Assume that X_release < X_supported.

3. Knowing that game will be supported after release, you can count with X_supported instead of X_release. So you can check your perceived value of game X_supported * company_trust against game price and decide if the game is worth it for the price.

Note that company_trust is how trustworthy is the company to get into X_supported.

Thus: If X_supported * company_trust > game_price => buy_game, otherwise no_buy

As we previously stated, X_release > X_supported. So if what you say is true:

X_release < game_price => buy_game, otherwise don't_buy

Which means that the X_release perceived value must be sufficient.

It is now obvious that the difference X_supported - X_release * company_trust is important. If X_release < game_price, but X_supported * company_trust > game_price, you wouldn't buy game without trusting company to fix it.

Now, you can look at Paradox games and compare how well received are those in main series (EU, HoI, lately CK and Vic a bit as well) vs their other titles (march of eagels, the japanese one, EU:Rome). Even when they are from the same company, people just did not trust Paradox enough to buy into those knowing that Paradox won't support them for long, unlike EU, HoI and Vic. While traditionally, while EU1,2,3 and HoI1,2 were often released in kind of beta-state and paradox was accused to overload QA to players, people bought into them because Paradox eventually fixed it and reworked even non-functional concepts.

Crusader Kings II and Europa Universalis IV to both receive expansions in November
28 October 2017 at 4:46 am UTC Likes: 1

Purple Library Guy
QuotePatches cannot objectively be both free and not-free at the same time.

Here, there is the logical error you are making.

How can it be a logical error to essentially quote one of the foundational axioms of symbolic logic? I can imagine it being an error, but not a logical one.

Eh, first of all, "logical error" is used in common speech as well.

But if you want... if you use improper logic based on assumed, but not stated axioms, which applicability could be disputed, you will get incorrect answer.

Assuming that A can be either "true" or "false", or in our case, "free" or "paid" depends on expectation of all people. Someone can see it as part of continued product support, something that is part of the price of game or previously released DLC (especially since Patches went into two modes, hotfixes and big patch that comes along DLCs. Sometimes, you have to wait several DLCs for specific bug, introduced in previous DLC, to be corrected).

So A can be both "true" and "false" at the same time, depending on assumptions of other people. If person X consider A to be true, than A|X = TRUE. If Y consider it false, then A|Y = FALSE. Obviously, from this example, A can be both true or false. You will get global answer if you integrate through all people: A| \int_\Omega.

Obviously this goes beyond propositional logic. But, why assume that this problem could be solvable in propositional logic?

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