Dev Discussion #20 - NPC Behavior



  • BreakeRBreakeR Member
    edited July 2020
    I would like variance in npc variance!

    I would like some of them to be unpredictable with complex behaviour trees leading to dynamic encounters.
    I would like others to just be stupid mobs who follow me around so I can group them up and AOE them to death.

    Also one thing that's been bugging me in recent MMOs. Mob leashes are too short. Monsters don't even bother to chase you anymore, they just give up and run back to their spawn location. I would like to see more wandering trash monsters who aren't attached to their spawn point, but rather to a large area. I want to see them clump up, and I want to see some areas be barren of monsters because they've congregated in a different part of the map.
  • TremTrem Member, Leader of Men
    I think it is important what kind of NPCs we are talking about. If we are talking about some random normal NPCs, then I think a randomized behavior is okay. However, if we are talking about Named NPCs, then some kind of a structure of a behavior is important.

    I Imagine it like this in RPG terms:

    Normal NPC is a basic thug with not much fighting experience, so they are just doing some random shit, they just hack around with their weapon, as long as the enemy dies it is not important for them how they achieve that.
    Named NPCs however are a bit more important, because they somehow achieved that name. For example we have someone named Joe the Smasher. He got his name from his signature move, that when he gets angry because he sustains damage (at 75%, 50%, and 25% HP), he smashes the ground, killing everyone in the area.
    Or something like that.

    So I think it is good that Named or elite NPCs have some kind of a main mechanick to them, between those mechanics they could have some random basic and powerful attacks, but signature moves should have some structure behind them.
  • NaxxazNaxxaz Member
    Yes, it's desired.

    Just make sure you create the least amount of work for the server-side, and let it be an uncommon occurrence.
    Also it'd screw with botters, so..
  • unknownwonunknownwon Member, Leader of Men
    I'm presuming that since no mention was made of regular vs boss mobs the question is about both. Regardless I believe that controlled randomness is the key. Some regular mobs may be more or less prone to retreating when on low health based on species, and some additional deviation on whether to retreat within a species would be nice as well.
    As for abilities, regular mobs don't usually have a predetermined ability order where they use certain abilities in a certain order at certain times.

    Bosses on the other hand do sometimes have predetermined ability orders and I believe that here too controlled randomness is the key. A boss may have say, 5 different abilities/mechanics. The boss using those same abilities in the same order such as when it reaches a specific health threshold is boring. However, too much randomness is bad as well. Ability #5 for example may be the most difficult ability/mechanic to deal with, and with true randomness it isn't impossible for it to happen several times in a row. Nothing is more annoying than when that happens. Ideally for each time a boss uses an ability, the chance that it will use that ability again successively decreases with each use that resets on the use with another ability, with a hard limit so it's forced to use another ability after it does the same thing x times in a row.
  • HeartbeatHeartbeat Member, Founder
    to me an interesting variance would be mobs detecting how much weaker or stronger they are than you, ganging up on someone stronger than them, and throwing out fast combos in an attempt to cc the player, or rushing a player if they detect that they are stronger, which instills a sense of fear in the player and an urge to get away or fight for their life.

    A huge thing i've wondered if games have done that's different is mobs fighting amongst themselves or roaming and fighting other ai mobs, said mobs that win will "level" up or slowly turn into stronger elite monsters (gaining stars/ranks) and get stronger, have better drops, be more aggressive, etc.

    Unpredictable annoyance: super fast animations you cant realistically react too, RNG dodge/block/miss with attacks, mobs being overly and unrealistically fast just to keep up with quicker players, "lock-on" attacks that have no chance to be dodged by moving
  • DaiskaDaiska Member
    edited July 2020
    Unpredictability keeps things interesting. An intelligent implementation of variety in behavior and movement to mimic realism can't be a bad thing. There's so many examples, but a basic thing might be as simple as some wildlife being faster or slower depending on their type, or length of time they'll chase you if you're trying to kite through somewhere. Like a snake might feel threatened and run at you, but stop once you're no longer a threat, while a raptor might be trying to get its next meal. Different aggro ranges. Wandering over larger areas. If you're never quite sure what to expect, monotony is never a thing.

    But I guess that's not really what was asked. It's about combat. Of course when the pool of mechanics and abilities that increases as the fights get bigger, like bosses doing something big at 50% health, then 25% health, all being in a predictable fashion and times to watch for them... I guess some people like that, because it's safe. But I'm not sure it provides the same sense of accomplishment when you have it all planned out, what you're supposed to do and when. Every fight (or a lot of them) being different sounds amazing to me.

    It might also be fun if town NPCs get into moods, maybe weather or season related. This kind of stuff really makes it come alive.
  • ExzearExzear Member, Braver of Worlds
    Yes its more fun if the NPC that you fight are smart and work as a team if possible. and have different mobs for example ranged, healers, melee and so on. Then ofc it should not be to hard so you cant solo farm mob spots but for raids and such mob synergy is really fun to figure out and find ways to overcome.
    People are like trees. They fall when you hit them with an axe.
  • DeliaszDeliasz Member, Settler
    Hello Community,
    Thank you again for sharing a little info about what are your plans around NPCs behavior towards players 😉

    Risk vs Reward.
    Repetitive battles are boring and there is a small reward for it. Hunting simple bores in the woods and killing like 100 could be a bit simple point and click but what if you have a small chance that those Bores actually become pissed of and summon their ancestor bore who can empower all other bores with better stats and hidden skills. Suddenly we have a stage where players have to either run away all call for help.

    Different mobs should have different variables.
    Normal, Elite, Small Boss, World Boss, or Raid Boos should scale up with players.
    Imagine the situation when you are going to kill Raid Boss who has a chance to drop legendary receipts and some mats. Your guild kills it but when you are going back to kill him again suddenly this Raid Boss laughs at you and sends some debuff at your group. He doesn’t have an increase in flat HP or AD/MA but more CC, added skills, new add-ons, and change of behavior in certain stages of the fight. Each time he becomes stronger, but he yields better drops.
    There is nothing better than some refresh after a long battle and variance is more than welcome. The perfect world would be that we as players have prepared before the raid and be ready for an unpredictable scenario. Adventure over math calculations and external aids.

    Visible aids during the battle should be minimized to the bare minimum. The more rewarding battle more difficult opponent, better dodge, better counter skills, faster casting, etc.
    Time goes fast. Time is a speed freak :D
  • CaelronCaelron Member, Braver of Worlds
    I definitely think NPCs need to have unique behavior.

    Not necessarily "random", but it shouldn't be the same every time. Having everything so scripted causes me to lose immersion. If I'm supposed to roleplay that I'm fighting a dragon - and ancient, powerful, and intelligent enemy - the dragon better have a few clever tricks up it's sleeve, or at least respond like he's somewhat intelligent. I also would expect the dragon's reaction to a single person to be different than a whole raid party.

    Just like intelligent players approach things differently, it would make sense to have as much intelligence in creatures and enemies as possible. Heck, I'd even be okay with a Merchant NPC having a few random behaviors. Maybe one day everything's more expensive and he's being a jerk... but a little roleplay discovers that his wife yelled at him after a night out with the boys, so he's mad and unknowingly taking it out on you?

    The more options there are, the more lifelike the world will be!
  • LuthienstormLuthienstorm Member
    edited July 2020
    Is randomized behavior in NPCs you are fighting desirable? Yes, but the desirable percentage changes depending on the "randomized behavior". Immersion requires predictability, but similar repetitious tasks feel like a grind and combat should be rewarding on its own. Players feel validated when an encounter is made easier by their foreknowledge (10%), preparation (20%), tactics (30%), and execution (40%). I'd say most of us want the appearance of randomized behavior.

    Randomized or alternate behavior falls into six general categories.

    Ability Rotations
    Time Intervals
    External Affects

    Abilities: Mobs should have, common abilities and 5 - 10% chance of having an alternate ability. Elite, rare spawns, 10 - 20%, dungeon bosses 20 - 25%, end of arch or raid bosses 25 - 35%. This should be in addition to different sub sets of the same mob. Lets say in a forest you have two types of wolves one wolf, may affect you with disease, knocks you down, and has a bleed affect. Assume there are things you can do to mitigate, reduce, or interrupt the affects. The other wolf can curse a player, has an attack with extra damage vs lightly armored chars, and howls giving a chance of another wolf entering the fight. One of these abilities maybe be randomly rolled to switch out with the other wolf.

    Diplomacy: A thief usually doesn't want to kill you but might steal your money. All combat doesn't have to end in death for failure or success. Some should beg for their lives, some run, dogs roll on their backs when they submit, others an honorable death, and each choice my lead to a different type of "progression".

    Stages: Perhaps your mission is to infiltrate an area via disguise, stealth, barter, or brute force. Perhaps there is a time limit to some quests and failure makes the quest harder (not necessarily failed). Perhaps not killing a NPC in a certain time frame alerts more NPCs locally. Individually, perhaps the creature spawns other creatures, begins to fly, is immune to a certain school of magic ect...mobs (.1), elite mobs or rare spawns (1% dungeon bosses (10%) end of arch or raid bosses (20%)

    External effects: Some mobs are stronger and some are weaker, by a small variance maybe 5%. Some mobs are stronger (or weaker) due to the season, progression, they're an enemy of your guild or hunt your kind, or perhaps during a festival(or period) they are no longer hostile...have certain abilities, ect...

    Randomized behavior only adds to combat so far. The point is to make combat engaging without overloading the player. One thing that worries me about this game is combat. Every piece of footage I've seen the tank gets aggro and the other players go work. That's not engaging combat. Tanks should be about applying cc, and reducing the damage other players take. Having players spam their dps buttons is not compelling combat. Generating "threat" is fine but it's also the biggest downfall of World of Warcraft that makes combat boring, repetitive, and ultimately not very engaging.

    Rare, scarcity, is fun in its own right. DRAGONS should randomly land in combat. Unless they are a flightless dragon the fact that dragons fly should be part of what makes them difficult, so the guy with 6 foot claymore doesn't place it in the dragon.

    Where's the line between interesting variance and unpredictable annoyance?

    Continuous hard CC, instant kills, and running without any ability for counter-play is unfun.
  • Thanks all for posting your detailed feedback on NPC behavior in this Dev Discussion! <3 I'm going through and gathering up your notes now for our team, but please feel free to continue sharing your thoughts here in the meantime.

    We'll see ya for our next Dev Discussion on quest breadcrumbs!
  • zenniazennia Member, Braver of Worlds
    This is an interesting question and it's prompting me to give an answer I normally wouldn't, simply because of the nature of the game itself. I'm coming from what might be a slightly unusual perspective. I'm a strictly PvE "carebear" type who avoids all hint of PvP in every game I play.


    You've succeeded in making the PvP systems in this game integrated and appealing enough that I've been able to get past my knee-jerk "No!!" reaction, to the point that I'm actually looking forward to it. But the fact remains that I am absolutely awful in PvP. Terrible. And why? Because I am so conditioned by PvE combat to looking for simple, scripted encounters and recognizable patterns that I could almost fight a mob with muscle memory alone. Humans don't do that. There may be some type of rotation demanded by skill interaction, but unless they're worse at PvP than I am, most don't stand in a single spot for your GTAOE or your 4-second cast time nuke to conveniently hit them.

    Personally, I think that with PvP content being as integral to Ashes as it is, the PvE content needs to help those of us who are PvP newbies get accustomed to combat against real people. If you use easy, telegraphed patterns in your NPC combat and don't have them use any evasive maneuvers, it's not going to do the PvE player base any favors in the long-run.

    So my vote is to have the NPC's mimic player combat at a modestly-skilled level (please don't make every open-world mob fight feel like the most notorious PKer on the server; *that* would cross the line into "annoying"!). Make the NPC's use intelligent reactions like moving out of AoEs after a second or two. Make them use line-of-sight to break a channeled spell you're casting. Make them use a stun-break when it's needed. Make their skill cast time a little faster than you normally see in an MMO. Have the skill sequence make logical sense, but not be 100% identical for every single fight, without fail.

    Basically, code the NPC's so that when we PvE players are actually fighting a moderately skilled PvPer, we're not totally frozen in combat because we can't keep up with the unpredictable actions or faster response times than what we're used to.
  • As much randomized behaviour as possible please. I think you cross the line into "unpredictable annoyance" when you aren't given a fair time to react or their animation is too difficult to read.
  • NiraadaNiraada Member
    edited July 2020
    I think there's a fine line to be trodden when it comes to NPC behaviours. If it's possible to implement decision trees, vs. truly random behaviours, I think the decision tree models would bring a level of life and reactivity to the NPCs that is difficult to find in the modern gaming market.

    Ideally, I would love for there to be a level of interaction where players can directly influence the behaviours of the NPCs (within certain limits), in order to make things feel more interactive and alive.

    For example, say you have a dragon that will, at some point perform a breath attack. Normally, without any direct influence, suppose it'll breathe at the biggest cluster of enemies, but wait! Your tank (or an intrepid dps) can bait out the breath with certain actions, directing it away from the rest of the raid (For example with a Taunt or Provoke type skill).

    (I should add: I don't think every attempted bait should succeed. There should be some skill involved, timing, etc. definitely, and perhaps have negative consequences for failure, too)

    Outside of that, I think having variance in behaviour is great, but I don't think true randomness should be a goal either. Things being perceived as random can be extremely frustrating, and I think developing a system that would enable more experienced players to intuit certain actions and reactions from NPCs would be extremely rewarding (and probably incredibly challenging to implement, so I won't expect it).

    If it's doable, having NPCs assigned certain triggers and responses could really bring an incredible amount of depth and overall feeling of life to the game, not just limited to boss encounters.
  • I think moderate variance based on how a mob looks and feels is the best. You want to avoid RNG based gameplay that creates uncontrollable, unsatisfying interactions in NPC mobs for no reason.

    For example - if you have a large orc who has a brutish knockdown ability, the player should be able to interrupt that ability or be able to dodge that ability with some skill. The brutish orc shouldn't be able to RNG stun-lock you for x amount of time versus how often that orc can use the ability and force you to make a counter-play more frequently.

    An example using scalability - a non elite mob may stun you once every twelve seconds, versus an elite mob can stun you every six seconds on CD.
  • ZericZeric Member
    edited July 2020
    Is randomized behavior in NPCs you are fighting desirable? Where's the line between interesting variance and unpredictable annoyance?
    The wrong question is being asked here. Because...
    Flare wrote: »
    In addition, an enemy that's responding to the players actions feels much better than an enemy that mostly stands around and does its thing.
    This is the intention behind randomized behavior as a mechanic, whether, intentional or not.
    This is also one of the reasons some people like PvP over PvE. The enemy reacts to your, and your parties', actions.
    It is the same reason boss mode changes at low percent health is so widely used and enjoyed. What the enemy is doing validates the player's actions. As the old sayings goes, "Actions speak louder than words" and "Show don't tell." In the perspective of the player; what the enemy does is the action and the showing, and the HP bar going down is words and telling.
    So the important thing is less that the enemy is "randomized" and more that the enemy doesn't feel like a program.
    I would even say that Ashes of Creation already has a system in place/in development that could be used to do the exact needed thing. Around 17 minutes into Asmongold's interview with Director Steven Sharif, Mr Sharif describes the boss encounter system in dungeons. I would say use a small scale version, of that same type of system, for the normal mobs.

    How "random" a mob can be, though, will be highly dependent on the time to kill scale. If the enemy is going to die in one or 2 hits every time you encounter it, there is very little influence mob behavior will have on how the fight feels.
    Which is why boss fights tend to be the focus of most designers. Boss fights are suppose to be harder and last longer than minion fights. So what the boss does and how it does it has a very high influence on how the fight feels.
    I would love to provide more detailed examples, however, the question asked is too broad and answers too specific.
  • I don't like the idea of totally random behaviour. Variation is nice, some randomness is okay to keep things interesting, but if something is very random it's just annoying.

    Maybe a better way to express the 'randomness' is to have things spawn with a hidden personality trait. So one monster might have a hidden trait for 'brave' which means they will fight to their last breath, while another might have 'craven' so that if they drop below a certain % they start fleeing.

    Stuff like that.
  • For NPCs we fight, yes as much randomness to emulate a real fight would be awesome. Nothing is more boring than standing in place, the monster standing in place, and both are just going through the exact same sequence of actions over and over and over and over.

    For NPCs we don't fight, some randomness can be fun, but I've found it annoying when "NPC can only be found at dark" happens, I swear it's always the crack of dawn when I first start looking. I end up sitting around just waiting while I'm blocked waiting for night to come.
  • I don't know about combat, but one thing that irks me about NPCs in games (not naming names) is when multiple copies of the same NPC exist in the world, and sometimes as different versions that have different dialogue. Some copies of an NPC seem to know about your interactions with them, while others don't. I find this extremely tacky and immersion-breaking. I am a huge fan of the system used in Elder Scrolls games where NPCs only exist once in the world and they have routines. There isn't just a copy of the same NPC in the town and also out in the wild gathering some herbs for example. Instead, the NPC has a routine where at a certain time of the day they leave town to go and pick their herbs and then return to town, maybe going back to their shop for a while to work, and then going to a tavern or back to their home for the night. Even if that's all that NPC ever does, that's a lot more immersive than happening across multiple copies of the same NPC. Their dialogue can also be different based on the stage of their routine. For example, a conversation with the NPC while they're picking herbs in the wild could end with them saying that they'll be back in their shop in town in the afternoon if you need anything. I realise that when even shops and things aren't persistent due to the node system it might be a little tricky to have all this working nicely, but if yous can pull it off it will be very engaging. #no_more_npcs_that_have_their_feet_glued_to_the_floor
  • BoondBoond Member
    I personally do not believe that randomized would be the correct term from what I expect from NPC behavior.
    To put some context into that, I do agree with previous posts that explain how it is cool to have unique fights and not getting bored after the second NPC you killed of the same type, however it is also not fun (something I despise) to get killed by RNG in a matter where you feel you could not have avoided.

    Keeping this in mind, it would be fun to have more dynamic and unique combat with NPCs, but there should be also a limit to what that "rng" can accomplish when, of course, the power level of a certain NPC is compared to the player one.

  • Randomness that can be predicted and responded to in a meaningful manner is great. I think a good kind of randomness is when "Ruffian NPC X" has a few simple moves to choose from. Ruffian NPC X uses this move when he's around half HP, but sometimes a little earlier, and sometimes a little later. He reveals which he will use, giving the player a couple seconds to respond how they wish.

    To contrast this, I think bad RNG is something like giving crit chance to enemy NPCs. Being chunked for a large portion of your health with no warning or counterplay isn't fun.
  • Randomized over a set sequence for sure.

    However adaptive behaviour to a situation or to what players are doing would be even better. If I can defeat a NPC 100% of the time as long as I have the information about it, what's the point? It becomes a piniata at that point. I'd rather have it actively trying to outsmart me and try to actually win.
  • That question brings to mind a 'Whoa' moment I had when playing ESO for the first time. I was fighting a group of npc's and all of a sudden one of them somersaults over me and lands right behind me in a sort of ambush maneuver. Another instance from the same game had one npc dropping oil on the ground and another npc using a projectile to set fire to the oil creating an area of effect with damage over time. Coming from MMO's such as WoW, Rift and SWTOR that kind of npc behavior came as as a pleasant surprise and really made combat that little bit more interesting. At first that made combat against regular npc's less of a chore and more exciting. However that type of variation in NPC behavior beyond the other more regular combat mechanics you'd have to deal with didn't go any further than that, which I thought was a bit of a missed opportunity.

    I'm of the thought that the journey to level cap is just as important as the endgame component of MMO's, so the combat against npc's should be meaningful, engaging and should be exciting. I've played through a number of different MMO's where combat consists of mind numbing button mashing, plowing through NPCs. It would be awesome if encounters with NPC's displayed more variation in behavior during combat, more engaging combat especially during the leveling journey would make learning your class more fun and perhaps arguably allow you to be more confident in performing your role in groups.

    I guess there does come a point though when you go through the content often enough albeit through alts, combat with npc's can get tedious, especially if they have elaborate mechanics that make the fights drawn out. That feeling of tedium comes about however when you are just trying to get to the next stage of content e.g. endgame. What is the balance between exciting and engaging combat with NPC's and still achieving the goals you set for your time in-game? Maybe an npc can draw from a pool, a set number of randomized behaviors/mechanics based on whatever class the npc represents. The benefit being the encounters are not always the same and the encounters are more engaging/fun.

  • I think one of the best things to do is have move sets for NPCs. Now the real question is are we talking about trash mobs or are we talking about shopkeepers, quest givers and guards in a Node siege scenario? If its is mobs, then I would say limited move sets for each mob with a variance in the mobs in each group. Example, you may run into different groups of 5. One group has 1 tank, 1 rogue, 2 casters, and a ranger. Another nearby group may have 5 rangers, or 3 tanks with 2 casters, etc. That way you can prioritize certain mobs with cc or high damage, but not make encounters stale.

    If we are talking about NPCs during Node scenarios, then they should definitely have move sets. The difference being, they should have expanded move sets depending on their job and class. I think that NPCs should have abilities similar to what Players have access to, up to having some elites with more skills or higher tier skills than a player can achieve.
  • ninfoshoninfosho Member, Braver of Worlds
    I would like to see the concept of dynamic difficulty implemented for instanced/raid/world bosses

    If the boss successfully kills a player this triggers more challenging mechanics, for example, it allows him to spawn minions which he wouldn't do otherwise

    To take this a step further this mechanic can depend on the archetype of such killed player, if it's a tank the boss now gets an armor of some sort, if it's a healer he gets healed as if he drank the player's blood/potions, if it's a dps he gets a buff and deals more damage

    There's endless variables you can incorporate such as the gear of the players

    For example, if you as the dps role wearing a specific rare set with a bonus elemental damage which the boss is weak to, in case you die the boss gains such set effects to his damage or no longer weak to such element

    Now there's a consideration whether to bring your rare gear to make the fight easier but also riskier if you die and make it more difficult for everyone else=risk vs reward

    In general, this will incorporate the challenge and difficulty onto the selected party by pretty much relying on the weakest links of the party=meaningful choices
  • OnyStyleOnyStyle Member, Braver of Worlds
    Npc behavior as far as questing goes should be pretty straight forward to a certain degree. Whether the player gets to know the specific conditions of said quest/outcome is debatable. However, this should only be for small things, and not drastically change desirable rewards.
    As far as mobs go, random actions are great! However, all monsters should have tells before said action is executed, making the combat more exciting and engaging. This randomization can be great, but you also dont want so much randomness that a super hard boss fight has a change of doing a basic attack every time. One should be able to easily program mobs to increase other skills likeliness based off of previous actions, for a more fun, but still well rounded fight.
  • sunfrogsunfrog Member, Founder
    I want there to be an NPC that will only talk to you if you are 6 feet away and wearing a mask.

  • UlfUlf Member

    I've read the other posts and I think that we all can agree that Random action is desirable, the tricky part is to find the balance between , as Freezman said somewhat at the beggining of the thread, the Wet Noodle fight, and the insta-wipe.

    I'd say ... obviously is not the same to fight a boss and the trash mob that comes with it, than to fight a world monster in the daily grind. For me there are 3 points

    The monsters that I kill while I solo grind: Maybe the mob reacts depending on how many people is hitting ?.. If im leveling alone, i want to be able to grind and sit.. sometimes, but not to fight one monster and be so weak that i have to sit every 1 min. If I find a leveling buddy, the monster could use a combination of skills rather than one skill at a certain time, like if i was killing it alone. To summarize. A set of skills, aplied under certain conditions, and buffs / nerfs depending on said conditions.

    The monsters that the Boys and I kill ( while having a cool set up and buffs and stuff, say " Area of Effect " Leveling, gathering a bunch of mobs and smashing ): One of the things that I loved about Lineage 2, was that I didn't need to have the " Perfect Party " to be able to level up. You could be a group of misfits and still do some decent AoE leveling in a cool dungeon ( Like Imperial Tomb / Forge of Gods in L2 ).
    This is the point that I would pay more attention to, because sometimes, a group of 5 ppl with a nice setup can make or break some spots. And that will come only with people playing the game / Having the info to theorycraft the fights. a Good MMO has areas that you HAVE to have a nice group to be able to kill, but I like to learn that the hard way. Like... running into a swarm of alligators and say " Oh... it's dangerous to go alone "
    We gamers are always trying, one way or another, to make the most of our time when we are playing. so there WILL be a lot spot breaking, meta breaking fast farming leveling s*** going on.
    And the difficulty of the fight and the ability to learn from those fights, specially in a group of people (We think better when we're together ?)is what can make a game interesting. You just have to balance the Risk/Reward right. Sometimes we want to have a chill farm that, with a bit of group playing, can give us nice xp/farming, But sometimes is nice to have a challenge in the farming spots, and those come via Monster/NPC Killing AND PVP while defending your spot.

    The Dungeon / Boss Fight. In the case of the boss fight, I think that WoW as done it fairly well, it gives you some queues or messages that indicates an ability is being casted or something so its nice ( specially when you try to play without addons). But I also LOVE the boss fights in Lineage 2.. Valakas... oh man, that was a fun dragon... 3 Hours killing a Boss. Good old times. I think resurrection and the ability to reset the fight was better in L2.

    Sorry for the wall of text, I am very hyped with all the recent exposure and content the game has gotten.

    Have a nice day !

  • Randomization is a key to keep things interesting.
    I love games where mobs/bosses have sequence attacks and when you think you learn all of them, all of a sudden sequence attack doesn't end on 3rd attack but keeps going because randomization kicks in, throwing player out of guard.
    Also that's why bosses who have many phases are so interesting because encounter constantly evolving.

    I would love to see variety of behaviors. It would be nice if NPC have many sequence moves and randomize from the list. Occasionally adding some unpredictable moves to the end of a sequence.
    It would be also nice if NPCs have some sort of intelligence. For example if low HP, they will run away and try to heal, or will try to call for help nearby NPCs. It could be random action also because i hate to chase every single mob who trigger low_hp_run_away_move :P.
    Imagine killing little lizards which do not pose any threat, and all of a sudden one of them squeal calling BIG ANGRY MAMA LIZARD and now you are the prey.

    Ofc system should be smart enough to prevent bosse's random action from leaving unavoidable hazard that will lead to inevitable party wipe. But I have big confidence in dev team that they manage to do it! :)

    gl hf
  • This is an interesting question as it comes down to how you want the players to deal with grinding and farming. By not randomizing NPC's players will eventually reach the point where they will know exactly how the mob will act when they fight and will then be able to go into an auto mode while watching Netflix or something in the background. Some players may prefer this type of grinding as they can relax and focus on other things as they grind XP or some specific loot drop.

    The other solution is the randomized behavior of the mob instead of a bear always charging you it instead lets out a debuff roar and then charges and other times adds a stun to the rotation keeping the player on their toes. An NPC ranger might instead of auto shoot arrows might one time go invis and reappear to stun you and apply a bleed effect to then make some distance and shoot arrows. the rotations they can perform are endless.

    Randomized behavior in my opinion is the way to go in a modern title as I want the game to keep me on my toes and hold my interest in the game for the entirety that I am playing it. I want to feel like if I look away for a second while I'm fighting something that when I look back I realize what a mistake it was to look away.

    Randomizing NPC behaviors will add slight difficulty to the mob and keeps the mobs interesting and fresh in my opinion and I think that it would be an asset to the game.
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