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Dev Discussion #31 - Environments

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Comments

  • MistrixMistrix Member
    edited July 6
    Just make sure move animation are not scuffed ( running, jumping ) Graphics is the last thing ppl worry about in MMORPG
  • ShuiynShuiyn Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I think there needs to be a mystique allure to explore, especially with a game on the scale of ashes, when you are running from node to node or between quests the environment needs to draw you in and pull you off track of your quest

    Leaf litter on the ground, shrubs and fallen logs for forrest areas, there needs to be a risk to going off the default path.

    Day and night cycles are massive and other weathering effects, one of my favorite parts of playing wow classic is the heavy rain that can randomly start in zones and happens more often in wetland ish type zones.

    Mobs that fit the zone type, for example wolves and bears for dark forest areas, I think less mobs can be better as long as they have their place, random mobs spawned just to fill space doesn't feel too immersive

    Background music/effects, crickets/owls at night time, wind noises, heavy rain, birds chirping as the sun cycle starts to come up

    The biggest thing in immersion for me is you need to feel as though you are on an adventure, there needs to be a theme to the world, sometimes bigger is not always better if it's just empty space between points, there needs to be that sense of danger where you want to grab two friends and go and explore a new part of the world, you need to feel risk while traveling to new location's that the world provides not just through high level mobs

    Traveling NPCs, vendors, guards walking on the roads, npcs walking around the city, voice acting for quests could be nice

    Just a couple of ideas off the top of my head
  • Balrog21Balrog21 Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    TOP 3 for me:
    1. Each zone or node/zone of influence in this case, has it's own themed music....this is a MUST for immersion. Let's say a node is in the metropolis stage and takes on the elven theme...it should have its own musical theme as soon as you get within it's zone of influence, so you know its nature and it's major inhabitants. I hate to use that other games, but they did this very well within each different zone. You knew where you were as soon as you heard the music, be at Zoram Strand, Booty Bay, or Ashenvale...the music greeted you when you arrived and sent you down the immersion path quite easily and quickly.

    2. NPC"s with a purpose.. please don't have NPC's just standing around 24 hours a day...make them do something, major NPC's should have shifts and even then have them doing something..i.e. have them go talk to another npc for a bit....make them move around even if it's to chase a rat away from their wares..just something besides standing there the whole day/night cycle.

    3. This one piggy packs off of #2, except it deals with mobs...as with NPC's don't just have them standing there waiting to be killed, make them alive and doing things....even if it's just walking around...but NOT in just small circles make them/it go somewhere to do something. Have other mobs attacking each other, and for bosses please have them doing something as well and not standing static.
  • DaneSlayerDaneSlayer Member
    edited July 11
    i feel like the environment looks good. nice lighting open world. surprisingly no first person which is the fisrt thing that comes to mind. people like to dance and move around smoothly. (not like bdo combat where they slide around killing everything with animation canceling)
    but Npc voices and the way the characters move around to interact with everything (trees, rocks, grass, snow, children running, eating food .. ect).
    Conquers Blade have good examples of troops fighting and having a battle cry "FOR VALHALLA!!"
    I havent played ashes myself but I remember a siege battle Steven was participating in and everyone ran to a super polite gate guard to cross over to the other side. why not have a mechanic to where you pull a lever to opens and close the gate.

    Also casting skills as a progression system thats separate from the actual player level.
    Its kinda standard to have skill points to pick a skill and pick newer skills in once you have enough points. But if for example you have a fireball spell and a heal spell. if you use fireball waaaaay more than heal then of course your main fire ball spell should infact be stronger heal. cause of the higher percentage use in the skill.
    It doesnt seem fair if you have 'points' ready to take out or in on the go whenever. Even if your a tank that never blocks or hold a shield up to block ... you have a resistance to fire, earth, water, ice, blunt, slash ect. but if you take damage from a certin type long enough you build a natural resistance from that specific type. Just makes it feel real.
    but the numbers dont have to be major it can just go up by +1 resistance or so if you take like 100k damage from magic or physical attacks. Not only will it make people want to hunt certin types of mobs like the fire dragon over and over it make them feel like they accomplish something even if there is no lute. Another example when fighting a dragon how does the dragon make you feel when fighting it.

    SORRY if this came out mean, but i hope this game doesnt end up like Chronicles of Elyria.
  • AerlanaAerlana Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited July 12
    colddrew wrote: »
    Something that really set the environment for me are NPCs walking around cities, towns, etc. that look similar to the players that are having a conversation or having a beer together in a tavern or tending to horses or whatever.

    This is also really a big thing for me.

    Some people always get angry to me when i says that FFXIV got the poorest open world of MMORPG (excluded some really shitty mmorpg for sure...)
    I was fast (mid arr) to find this open world empty, dead. meaningless.
    Because ennemy density is close to 1 per km², and... really low NPC living, in the open world. The FATE in begining make the fill, but while you farm it (because was the only way to level) and see for the 10th time the same scene that open the escort quest of the miqote in oriental noscea... you don't see this as a way to make live the world but just "a scenarised quest"

    On the other side, there is BDO, even if you remove all players, town are living, NPC speaking, walking everywhere in. and also you can so often find random NPC in open world. they are "useless" for most, no quest, no interaction possible, following them don't even show a "little story" it is just people doing their day.

    GW2 is good also.


    Landscape is a thing, dont having a copy/paste everywhere, variety of biome, etc is really REALLY a thing to not fail, but if there is no "live" in it. it will feel empty, and harder to enjoy travelling, exploring, discovering the world


    Would have a second thing. similar to NPC : make "archeology" or "exploration" a way to learn more about the world. some interaction with a strange mark on ruins with a little description, and deeper in the ruins, another mark another description, and then a statue with another description that make you remind the first 2 marks.. And finally you collect some puzzle stuff from the area and you manage to understand this was a dark temple dedicated to a demon. (it is an example)
    the world can also live with this.


    Balrog21 wrote: »
    TOP 3 for me:
    1. Each zone or node/zone of influence in this case, has it's own themed music....this is a MUST for immersion. Let's say a node is in the metropolis stage and takes on the elven theme...it should have its own musical theme as soon as you get within it's zone of influence, so you know its nature and it's major inhabitants. I hate to use that other games, but they did this very well within each different zone. You knew where you were as soon as you heard the music, be at Zoram Strand, Booty Bay, or Ashenvale...the music greeted you when you arrived and sent you down the immersion path quite easily and quickly.

    Hum lot of music is fine but do you mean "each not got his own" or "each node kind"

    For "ZOI" i would prefer bime themed, because we are in wild areas. 2-3 theme per biome to have a little variety and not the same 5 minute that cycle non stop while you farm all days.

    For node, i have in mind a simple thing :
    A theme per type of node (military, scientific, religious, economic)
    Do a variation of each depending the size (camp, village, town, city, metropolis)
    And then for all the 20 you have, another variation due to the race dominance.

    I begin by the type because it is what impact the most the gameplay : each type has its own building and so utility. Then the size, more or less houses, buildings, etc. and finally the race dominance which is mainly aesthetic.




    So TL;DR :
    What are some of the elements that make for a more “realistic” or “lifelike” world when you play a game, from NPCs to environments and beyond? How much does realism matter to you generally?

    Living NPC, in town, and out of them. Not just "some NPC" but they have to live. doing their work, speaking to others, etc etc.

    "realism" in the sens of "living world" helps me a lot to immerse, and makes me feel be part of the world. When done well i am not just "a sumoner that kills wolves" i am a character, far stronger than most the lives the world (NPCs) and have to do my part in this society (could it be a good helpfull part or a bad one)
  • edited July 12
    A seamless transition between biomes is quite important to me. I know Alpha is just placeholder, but it felt strange going from a snowy area and then palm trees right away down at the first node. And then day/night cycles would be nice and weather changes, storms, rain, thunder etc. Would also love to see more critters, like an AoC version of a deer, birds flying in the sky, fish jumping in the rivers to let players know that's a good fishing spot etc.

    I also love what GW2 did with vertical space. Like being able to climb up mountains and huge tree tops etc.

    Another thing, not sure if in-house is part of this environment subject, but lighting inside houses needs work. Houses should be somewhat dark with light ONLY coming from fireplaces, candles etc. Right now they look TOO lit.
  • SillyRabbitSillyRabbit Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited July 12
    What are some of the elements that make for a more “realistic” or “lifelike” world when you play a game, from NPCs to environments and beyond? How much does realism matter to you generally?


    When I think of a "realistic" or "lifelike" world, I think of an environment that can change over time. For example, if a lot of people lumbered the forest, it might have a lot of stumps around and take some time to regrow. Finding "farm-able" items in their proper areas, like iron in caves, herbs in plains or tropical areas make the player feel more immersed. One thing that is always jarring for me is when there is no smooth transition into the next biome, so when making the world feel real, this is to be avoided.

    Creatures also add a lot to the "realism" of the world. Seeing goblins work together to take down some raptors near their camp would be a good example. Creatures and NPCs having a "routine" or somewhat of a behavior system helps add that depth to the world. That feeling of being a part of a living, thriving world is very immersive. I think this idea sort of lends itself well to Ashes of Creation, due to the node system. How cool would it be to see the villagers working with you on the town to help advance it further?

    Overall, I would say realism is important to a point. This is a fantasy game after all, so whatever falls into the realm of "real" in Vera is up to interpretation. I would argue though, that realism is hard to obtain in a game but is very important to keep players coming back. In reality, nothing stays the same forever, things are constantly advancing, so to see the world around you doing the same is an awesome thing. So far, the node system is looking very nice. I can't wait to see the month long test and help build a town!

    As always, great work Intrepid, I look forward to what you will bring us next! <3

  • CROW3CROW3 Member
    Late, but RDR2 was probably the most immersive environment I’ve played. In short it felt like the world worked just fine whether I was there or not. That made the world feel bigger and worth exploring.
    AoC+Dwarf+750.jpg
  • AlvalonAlvalon Member
    Hi, I would like to mention:

    1) I like when there is uniqueness between each races, when each race can do something that other cannot, that makes me more conected to the story and I can feel the limits that keep the world together within our human logic.

    2) Regarding the immersion of the world story: I believe it has to, in a way, reflect truths, archetypes from our human Earth world. What I mean by that, the more the person who is creating the main story knows about himself as a human, the better story he is able to create. A lot of times this is subconscious matter, when creativity works in this way, it is important to let it flow and go by the feel and not be influenced by what is thought to be "what people want". That way the true creativity gets overshadowed by our imperfect logic and the story gets worse.

    Best of luck guys, I love what you are doing and I am rooting for you so much!
    Pavel/Alvalon
  • AsraielAsraiel Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    beside haveing a good visual the biggest importance is sound
    seeing something gets more secondary if the sound is great
    like sound may give me goosbumps but pictures not so here a little vid with nature sounds that may give you goosbumbs
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=kvAfmYNtugQ
  • Asraiel wrote: »
    beside haveing a good visual the biggest importance is sound
    seeing something gets more secondary if the sound is great
    like sound may give me goosbumps but pictures not so here a little vid with nature sounds that may give you goosbumbs
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=kvAfmYNtugQ

    Even on my poopy 90"s speaker It does set the mood. Makes me want to upgrade to a sound bar with decent base lol
  • AsraielAsraiel Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    edited July 20
    i use headphones so that the sound doesnt get disturbed by other sound o noise around me. so i dont disturb other peoples. even on a small scale of decibel i can enjoy the full potential of the sound and let me dive in deeper, so some sound you can close your eyes and you see it happen by only hearing it.

    if you did travel and been to many diffreent places you made mamories of it that these not only contain visual or sound also smell, tast and touch and if you hear simular sounds your memeory kiks in and adds the other things that your onw memory is attached in senses so like these sounds

    the liks contain very long videos so listen to parts of them may allredy dive the dive in effect. best with high quality headphones

    Ocean
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=btmjDyff6E8
    Calm river
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=qxwuqO9uOKs
    faster running creek
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=dR4JIKZKL_U
    Calm forest
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=qOTtnyQFLEg
    Fast river
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=KRg0vHytUzg
    Rain & Thunder
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=74b3Zb18UDM
    Desert wind
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=_YO8rKMCeck
    fire in house
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=UgHKb_7884o
    waterfall
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=HchoJcYNYlU
    winter storm
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=sGkh1W5cbH4
    medival Tavern (never been in one myself but can still imagin it mostly from movies and from visits to restaurants)
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=Vsok_dWP_rk
    Church
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=gFwUEAL8A4Q
    Market
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=vHEIImSM1Do
    Bazaar
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=8uRtW8lBe0I
    Animal sound
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=ut2KhcNtnm8

    but also the right music background adds tho the feeling like
    Arabian music
    https://youtube.com/watch?v=hl_tNk8MWQw
    and many more
    in games i love to have the clasical music with piano and violins or even choores
  • AsraielAsraiel Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    in alpha i found it sad that even that it has mountains no mountain creeks anywthere also no fast rivers.

    on the sound bases hearing Woodpecker around Winstead was a nice sound addition but also was a bit funny cause i remember that sound in dense forests like woodpecker-in-pine-forest-arterra-picture-library.jpg
    and when on the beach i often heard a seegull but no birdy anywhere was also kinda funny.

    for me living in switzerland rivers and creeks ar normal to show how normal here some mapping of the densety of creeks and rivers first on the low mountains:
    unknown.png
    now zooming in
    unknown.png

    or on mountains
    unknown.png
    and zooming in
    unknown.png

    this here is a canaled river
    Tuscarawas_River_Massillon.jpg
    it kinda looks like those in alpha

    and here are the natural river which i expect to see in Verra
    w.jpg
    vjosa-gross-01-jpg--42130-.jpg
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