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Dev Discussion #40 - Enemy Indicators

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  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    edited April 4
    Neurath wrote: »
    I'm not sure why we can't have a system where we learn about mobs the more we interact/kill them. I can't remember which game it was I played with it. Combined with no nameplates it would be cool. Veterans could shield greener troops from greater threats.
    Who wants to be shielded all the time!?! That's no fun.
  • NeurathNeurath Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Anyone who has a tank in the group and needs to focus on other things than tanking.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    LMAO
    No.
  • NeurathNeurath Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    Dygz wrote: »
    LMAO
    No.

    Oh fuck, your ass is falling off. You need to be shielded.
  • SoggyBandaidSoggyBandaid Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I would say if AoC wants to lean into the "Hard Core No Indicators (TTRPG) Style," it should be tied into other relevant systems, for example artisan paths for scribes or monster harvesting. I feel in an age where there is a dedicated wiki to all information AoC, if the players do not know the power of the enemy, they'll just look it up. However, if there is an in game reward tied to characters learning about monsters, this could be more viable. It would be really awesome if done well, but annoying if done poorly.

    For me personally, I would prefer indicators because I think "Hard Core" just drives players to a weird research wiki "meta" like some players were complaining about online for New World. With that in mind I don't have a preference between "Old School" or "Intended Audience" so long as the UI is clean, polished, and in line with overall game aesthetic.

    Finally, I do think nuanced party indicators either solo, small party (2), medium party (4), large party (8), small raid (20), and or full raid indicators (40), or some sort of by player calculation would be more helpful than just group/raid with the 8 player max group size.
  • SyndraelaSyndraela Member
    edited April 5
    This whole 'let everyone have it their way' is nice in theory and no real disadvantage for those who intend to use the feature with a lot of indicators. But we play in the same world and actively compete in it. If one group of hardcore style loving players carefully advances taking every new mob they encounter as a possible serious thread while the indicators group just jumps head on in because they know its safe, and this all in a game where there is a constant threat of PvP ambush... it will just result in everyone who wants to play somewhat competitive or just who doesn't want to be always at a disadvantage being basically forced to turn on indicators.

    Chose one system and stick with it. I m not talking of how cleaned up the ui is (thats fine if you make it configurable) but about which and through which media (artificial or immersive indicators) information is conveyed.

    I prefer immersive indicators over artificial ones and would love to see more interaction for players talking about which spots are nice to level and farm at for a certain class or group combination instead of a dead zone chat because it is written on the mob whether you can kill it.

    I could live with an indicator like a flashing red window border, dangerous background music or even NPCs telling you it is maybe no the best idea to be here when you are in an area that is way out of your league but I'd reserve that for regions where things 1hit your tank and consider everything else as doable
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    Again a bunch of vomit salad. Instead of trying to repeat my argument back to me in some altered favorable way to yourself actually come up with a counter? Regardless of word size
    Your argument was that if players have all the information, there is no puzzle.

    My point, that I have repeatedly made, is that MMO combat is not supposed to be a puzzle. Aspects of it can be made as such, but we are not talking aspects of combat in this thread, we are talking about every encounter, every time.

    I'm honestly unsure at this point how you do not understand that I have twice (now three times) put this to you, and you have basically come back with - but why not argue against the point I made?

    If the point you think you made is anything other than
    if you have all the information it literally isnt a puzzle.
    Which I should add is the exact and specific point I rebuffed above, then perhaps you should make your point again as I am quite frankly sick of rebuffing this same inane point.
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    edited April 5
    I'm not sure what you think my argument is. I've have played games where mob levels weren't visible and i didn't find it to be a big deal which is all i'm trying to demonstrate here.
    Which games.

    There are some games in which I can see it not being an issue. However, these are games in which PvE is relegated to a third rate aspect of the game - or games in which levels just don't exist at all.

    In Ashes, PvE is supposed to be first equal along with PvP, and level will indeed matter.
  • 1. Options are everything. Personally I prefer low/Minimal UI elements especially for enemies as it adds more Immersion. A rough indicator on relative challenge to your level can be very helpful, though I believe 'ELITE' enemies for example should be evident through game play (like ai behaviours) and art design as well as through you know playing the game and gaining combat experience.

    2. This bleeds into an idea a few comments have mentioned about discovery. THere is a real opportunity to add codex like extra info and background on the enemies. Perhaps not lore that no one will read but actual tooltip that can also be quick viewed perhaps by pressing ALT for an expanded plate and also in a bestiary menu out of combat.
    A mini progress system could also unlock more info E.G
    You kill 50 of this enemy you discover they have a slight vulnerability to X
    You kill the unique version of this enemy called 'coolbob' you find out they are stronger when injured or some other mechanic relevant info.
    You kill 1000 of them (some stretch goal) you gain a taxidermy trophy and that enemy type is more vulnerable to your debuffs.
  • emerys wrote: »
    Hard Core No Indicators, Even if its just a option in the menu~!
    Just reading that is is a option made my hear skip.
    The first encounter on a new spieces of enemies is a thrilling part of any new adventure.
    I duno what balance you can find between; ppl crying its too easy or too hard and good luck with that.
    Gradual knowledge and understanding that would maybe boost damage to the enemies.. like in a beast book or something, evolving the knowledge bar of your target would peak my thrill in this aspec.

    Yeah the first time I got one slapped by the frost troll in skyrim on my way up to the Greybeards was a very memorable moment!
  • mcstackersonmcstackerson Member, Phoenix Initiative, Royalty, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    Noaani wrote: »
    I'm not sure what you think my argument is. I've have played games where mob levels weren't visible and i didn't find it to be a big deal which is all i'm trying to demonstrate here.
    Which games.

    There are some games in which I can see it not being an issue. However, these are games in which PvE is relegated to a third rate aspect of the game - or games in which levels just don't exist at all.

    In Ashes, PvE is supposed to be first equal along with PvP, and level will indeed matter.

    Is this assumption true or not?
    I doubt you have never experienced this in your 20 years of playing. I'm sure you never found it a big deal (because it isn't) but i bet there are little things like when a mob runs to friends or casts a spell that have forced you to change your approach i.e. learning you need to silence healing spells.
    Have you encountered mobs in an MMO's world that forced you to adapt after learning their skills, behavior, or resistances?
    smallerLizard.jpg
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    I'd like some indication of whether it's a mob I should be wasting my time on - but...
    I suppose I could also guage how an opening volley affects the mob's health bar.
  • maouwmaouw Member, Alpha One, Adventurer
    I have grown to appreciate the value of (almost) no indicators for 3 reasons:
    • encountering a new mob invites you to test the strength of the mob, and judge whether you can fight it based on your own skill. This is more engaging that being told, encourages you to ACTUALLY explore and you build a backlog of personal experience. (Example: giant Trex wanders around a beginner map and you wonder just how strong you'll have to be to take it down one day, so you try poking it and gain a sob story to tell your friends. Don't poke the Trex. VERSUS: giant Trex is level 20, reach level 25 and kill it)
    • it places emphasis on consistent mob design - Puny guy is weak. Big guy is stronk. Puny but poisonous guy should not be underestimated. Also leans into progressive mob design: brown bear --> cave bear --> lava bear. You have context to assess how scary a lava bear might be.
    • Opportunity for Codex research questline (gotta catch 'em all pokedex) with functional benefits (research to unlock hp bar indicator for the mob, etc.)

    That said, it's important that players can easily find the name of the thing they are fighting (maybe that's the first thing you unlock for the mob doing the research quest?) so people know what to call it.

    I also like an idea mentioned earlier to embellish mobs that are not intended for solo play, because the gap between solo and group content is *quite* large. (That said, players will eventually solo group-content anyways coz of scaling)
    I wish I were deep and tragic
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    Each time I level, first thing I always do is explore the map as far as I can go until I stumble upon mobs that con with skulls.
    I still wonder how close I can get with mobs that con slightly above my level.
    I dunno why I would want to waste my time poking at mobs that are way over my level to try to see if I'm finally high enough for a fair match. "Am I there, yet? Am I there, yet? Am I there, yet?" Doesn't sound like fun to me.

    Research questlines to unlock the mob's threat level indicator could be fun.
  • SnekkersSnekkers Member
    edited April 6
    No indicators

    But dont make turning them off only an option in menu, cuz then it makes no point of turning it off.. everyone see indicators or nobody
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    Have you encountered mobs in an MMO's world that forced you to adapt after learning their skills, behavior, or resistances?
    Yes, I have played games where developers throw in a few random things that make players have to rethink things on the fly. Not from mobs running off and getting friends - that is always a part of the expectation in most games.

    The problem I have here is that this happens with mobs when developers want this to happen. When this does happen, it's great.

    What we are talking about here though is not developers adding in an additional dimension to some mobs - it is literally every mob in the game, all the time.

    And no, I have not played an MMORPG where mobs do not have their level clearly displayed to players, and I doubt you have either (which is why I asked you to name the games you claim to have played with it).

    If Intrepid want to add some surprise to mobs, great. This, however, is NOT the way to achieve that.
  • CROW3CROW3 Member
    Noaani wrote: »
    And no, I have not played an MMORPG where mobs do not have their level clearly displayed to players, and I doubt you have either (which is why I asked you to name the games you claim to have played with it).

    Now I’m thinking on this. Plenty of RPGs don’t show levels, but MMOs…

    DayZ?
    Did UO?
    The early mmos had the beginning CON system, and I just can’t remember if DAoC or AC made levels obvious. They probably did. The only other one that comes to mind was Vangaurd. But given where standards were in that 2001-2004 period they probably did.

    We figure these things out in single-player games all the time. Not sure why we couldn’t set the same expectation for an MMO where there’s even greater opportunity to lean on the MM part of the equation.
    AoC+Dwarf+750v3.png
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    CROW3 wrote: »
    We figure these things out in single-player games all the time. Not sure why we couldn’t set the same expectation for an MMO where there’s even greater opportunity to lean on the MM part of the equation.

    We figure these things out in single player all the time and have jo issues with it because there aren't any consequences in single player games.

    If we get killed by a mob we misjudged, we just reload.

    That isn't an option in an MMO.

    Now, of those games you listed, DayZ is a survival fame and not an MMO. It asks completely different things of its players, and it's players have different expectations for it than they would a survival game.

    Vanguard did show level as well as if a mob was intended for solo, group or raid.

    The other three games you listed (UO, DAoC and AC) are all games with no real focus on PvE (which was a point I originally made when asking what games didn't show mob level, though didn't repeat it in the post you quoted). While Ashes isn't a PvE game, its PvE should stand on an equal footing to its PvP.

    Even if we wanted to ignore the above games lack of PvE focus, we can simply look at how early they were in the grand scheme of things. Games have learned from the mistakes of that generation. Just as we have learned to not use lead for water pipes from those that have gone before us, we can also learn that giving players basic I formation about how difficult a mob is supposed to be makes for a better game.
  • Penumbr4Penumbr4 Member
    I would prefer names that changes colour / scales with threat level.

    Or colour of health bar, background of nameplate, or dot (skull) beside the name.

    I don't want to see level of things in the UI. level, weakness, strength, armor rating, stats maybe even a drop table, should all be unlocked in a creature catalog for kills. What would be unlocked for 20,000 kills?

    BDO does a fairly good job of this, as do other games, but it could be expanded on and improved.
    Ashes of Creation is the next level of MMORPG and should leave people's mouths hanging.

    Go big or go home !

    white, light grey and dirty grey for weaker then character. (reduced xp for killing)
    yellow, green and blue, for equal to character (minus or plus a few levels)
    purple, orange and red for stronger then character. (you'd better have friends)
    dark red, brown and black for stronger then party. (your friends better have friends)
  • CROW3CROW3 Member
    Noaani wrote: »
    We figure these things out in single player all the time and have jo issues with it because there aren't any consequences in single player games.

    If we get killed by a mob we misjudged, we just reload.

    That isn't an option in an MMO.

    Now, of those games you listed, DayZ is a survival fame and not an MMO. It asks completely different things of its players, and it's players have different expectations for it than they would a survival game.

    Vanguard did show level as well as if a mob was intended for solo, group or raid.

    The other three games you listed (UO, DAoC and AC) are all games with no real focus on PvE (which was a point I originally made when asking what games didn't show mob level, though didn't repeat it in the post you quoted). While Ashes isn't a PvE game, its PvE should stand on an equal footing to its PvP.

    Even if we wanted to ignore the above games lack of PvE focus, we can simply look at how early they were in the grand scheme of things. Games have learned from the mistakes of that generation. Just as we have learned to not use lead for water pipes from those that have gone before us, we can also learn that giving players basic I formation about how difficult a mob is supposed to be makes for a better game.

    It’s rare when you and I agree on most points. So I’ll lean into that. Thanks for the correction on Vanguard - I literally just can’t remember.

    To your point on the single-player curve, I wonder if we can still port that learning to an mmo where the curve will be steepest at the beginning when it doesn’t impact our drops / xp / etc. But it’s mostly just wondering; I can totally see (and concede) the point of having level on the target.

    AoC+Dwarf+750v3.png
  • MetalDadMetalDad Member
    Hardcore until you have engaged with the type, then old school once discovered. Certain effects, situations revert to Hardcore, or give the wrong information. Booze for example.

    If you see wolves for the first time, you may think that you can take them and you are not sure how strong they are. After you fight with a few, then you can see how relatively strong these wolves are...

  • Old School for me.
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    CROW3 wrote: »
    To your point on the single-player curve, I wonder if we can still port that learning to an mmo where the curve will be steepest at the beginning when it doesn’t impact our drops / xp / etc.
    This is an interesting idea.

    The question I have is - would failure early on in an MMO turn people off?

    It doesn't in a single player game because no one is there to see it. However, in an online game, would that be different?
  • NeccNecc Member
    In MMOs with both PvP and PvE elements i prefer to see a mixed aproach:

    For PvE, intended audience method is what i like: level of the enemy, and difficulty type (regular, veteran, elite, boss) should be visible, while some information like maximum resources (health, mana, stamina) is completely hidden.

    In an era where people can just search everything up, i see no point for a full hardcore approach, especially IF the game design will be around some progress loss on death (imagine being one shot by some random trashmob while exploring which is actually a high level elite) or if the player has to pass between areas as they progress separated by a high level area intentionally placed between the two.


    As for PvP (where i does not necessarily mean the "versus" part, but also just players being neutral to each other), i prefer the near full hardcore approach, with the only visible information if the target player is way below your level, signaling that ganking will have a significant negative impact, or for group content the player is clearly too low level.

    While in the other hand i can foresee a lot of trolling from players where you need to co-op for some content (group dungeons, raids, guild events) of the game, i would add an opt-in system where players can share some basic information (their level and maximum resource values) with group, raid, friends or guilds respectively, with guilds having the option to have some control, example pirate guilds can force to hide player information within their members, or PvE focused progress guilds forcing player information to be visible inside the guild.
  • mcstackersonmcstackerson Member, Phoenix Initiative, Royalty, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    Noaani wrote: »
    Have you encountered mobs in an MMO's world that forced you to adapt after learning their skills, behavior, or resistances?
    Yes, I have played games where developers throw in a few random things that make players have to rethink things on the fly. Not from mobs running off and getting friends - that is always a part of the expectation in most games.

    The problem I have here is that this happens with mobs when developers want this to happen. When this does happen, it's great.

    What we are talking about here though is not developers adding in an additional dimension to some mobs - it is literally every mob in the game, all the time.

    And no, I have not played an MMORPG where mobs do not have their level clearly displayed to players, and I doubt you have either (which is why I asked you to name the games you claim to have played with it).

    If Intrepid want to add some surprise to mobs, great. This, however, is NOT the way to achieve that.

    It's not all the time. The first time you encounter a mob, you have an understand of it's level and will know for future encounters. It's also not every mob since mobs will be grouped around similar level mobs. You fight one and you will know the level range of the others.

    As i said before, you will have quests guiding you towards level appropriate mobs so you will learn most of this info by playing the game.
    smallerLizard.jpg
  • CROW3CROW3 Member
    Necc wrote: »
    In an era where people can just search everything up, i see no point for a full hardcore approach, especially IF the game design will be around some progress loss on death (imagine being one shot by some random trashmob while exploring which is actually a high level elite) or if the player has to pass between areas as they progress separated by a high level area intentionally placed between the two.

    This is essentially how Valheim works. There are no levels noted on mobs, but you learn how powerful those mobs are by encountering them. Deathsquitos particularly can sneak up on you and 2 shot you depending on your armor and food prep. But once you upgrade everything, learn how to detect and defeat them - they really aren’t an issue.

    I’d much rather have that experience instead of the ‘I’m 2 and their 5 - won’t even try because this site tells me exactly what to do.’ At what point are you still playing the game?

    AoC+Dwarf+750v3.png
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    In Valheim, you explore an area until something quickly kills you. Then you stay where you are until you upgrade your gear. Deathquitos are more about tactics than tier disparity.
    Valheim is a survival game, though. It's not an RPG.
  • CROW3CROW3 Member
    Dygz wrote: »
    In Valheim, you explore an area until something quickly kills you. Then you stay where you are until you upgrade your gear. Deathquitos are more about tactics than tier disparity.
    Valheim is a survival game, though. It's not an RPG.

    Well, it’s important to survive in Ashes too. 😉

    My point is that as gamers, we’re familiar with this type of interaction to sus out the strength and power of a monster. That can translate to mmos.

    I may not play soccer on a baseball diamond, but I can still kick a ball from home plate.

    AoC+Dwarf+750v3.png
  • NoaaniNoaani Member, Intrepid Pack
    As i said before, you will have quests guiding you towards level appropriate mobs so you will learn most of this info by playing the game.
    That just sounds a bit too theme park for my liking - if you want to know where the level appropriate mobs are, you have to do these quests.

    Players should be able to just roam around and find level appropriate content in any MMO, but especially in a game like Ashes.
  • DygzDygz Member, Braver of Worlds, Kickstarter, Alpha One
    CROW3 wrote: »
    Well, it’s important to survive in Ashes too. 😉

    My point is that as gamers, we’re familiar with this type of interaction to sus out the strength and power of a monster. That can translate to mmos.

    I may not play soccer on a baseball diamond, but I can still kick a ball from home plate.
    If you're kicking a ball on a baseball diamond, you are probably playing kickball and don't need the same skill set or playfield analysis as you need for soccer.

    Sure, if it's a game where all you're relying on is tiers of gear to defeat mobs and what determines mob level is distance from starting zone - you don't need a threat assessment tool.
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