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Death
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saide
Immortal


Joined: 18 Mar 2007
Posts: 362

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2016 5:30 pm    Post subject: Death Reply with quote

Hey everyone,
It’s your friendly neighborhood troll and I want to say first off that we recognize that ShadowGate has been less than lively lately. However, we are actively working to improve that problem. That is actually why I am making this post today.

Today we are going to be talking about death. ShadowGate death. Currently when you die you leave most of your gear behind on your corpse, you lose approximately 10% of your total experience, and your level is often lowered. I don’t think anyone is unfamiliar with this experience.

I believe that this is overly harsh – especially for new players but also for people who have played for a while. Often a player makes a simple mistake – underestimates the number of vials that they need – or encounters a monster that was turned up – or several other conditions that result in their death.

Under ideal conditions a player can manage to retrieve a lot of their gear and then spend more time to catch up to the level of power than they previously were by gaining back lost experience. The thing is that I do not believe this is an ideal condition. I think our players would be better suited spending their time interacting, exploring, or even developing conflicts with one another.

I’m proposing that death be changed. So that you no longer lose gear or experience. However, gear that stays with you through death would take a substantial condition hit – effectively making it costly to keep your gear – and in some cases the cost might be less to simply replace the gear than it would be to repair it. This would still apply to player kill deaths, except that if you were so inclined you could strip gear from a player before killing them.

My thought by making such a change is that death would be still an annoyance, but it would not be so much of a painful experience that it would dissuade newer players from even giving the game a chance.

Now, I am also not making this post to tell you that this is what is going to happen. Rather, I want feedback from you, our players and our staff.

Would such a change encourage you to play again? Would such a change dissuade you from playing? Do you have a different idea that you would like to share?

I also recognize that if we implemented the type of system that I mention then our content would need to be updated fairly regularly. It is our intention to try to move in that direction – so that our game feels more alive and more progressive. We currently need to work on updating our newbie area and an item standard and these are things that are coming – just be patient with us as we try to work out all of the kinks.

We look forward to having you in OUR (meaning the staff and the players) game and look forward to your help in making a game that we can all continue to enjoy.
Saide
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diego



Joined: 30 Jul 2011
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2016 11:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the idea of lessening the downside of death. I am concerned though that since the population base is not so high some of the players seek token gear. As you know token gear cannot be repaired and this problem would still cause them to seek tokens to replace damaged gear. Perhaps you can make the gear repairable, perhaps for tokens.
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Craig



Joined: 04 Oct 2016
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 2:47 am    Post subject: Death Reply with quote

So, I think removing the effects of death entirely isn't the best idea. Personally I feel that would end up would with a feeling of carelessness in general but I could be wrong about that.
Concerning the durability hit, I think that could work except for a few immediate concerns, mainly income in that in the lower levels/newer players money doesn't just come flowing in unless you happen to have decent idea of where to find said cash but also how/where do such repairs happen?

Something I've been thinking about(and wishing for) with feats/stat gains to be able to enjoy the boost from them is that instead of it acting like dead(i.e able to reduce your current level promoting going X amount negative to next level before gaining the feat/stat) and instead would just add the requisite amount to EXP to Next. So for the level 20 stat point with the cost of 3 million would take you from 2 million to level up to 5 million for next level. Having Death act in the same way would make it a little more forgiving because you aren't losing levels at all and losing access to spells/skills/feats(does that happen?) etc. Biggest gripe/concern here is that sometimes on death because of random HP loss you can end up further down on total HP than you were originally at that level which for same classes can actually because of players thinking they are ok for area A again even though they just dropped 10 extra health thus lower buffer.

As to the actual penalties of a death itself I don't think they are bad except in situations where you are unable to retrieve gear which makes the hit especially worse(reboot/no TP area/see invis issues/time issues etc). My thinking is that if you can get gear back, you take the exp hit and if you can't get gear back you don't take the exp hit. Basically leave it to player discretion if they want to take the chance of more deaths in an effort to retrieve their corpse/time in regearing or just accept the immediate experience loss. I don't know about the code feasibility but I was thinking just another prompt in the death cycle that says something like "exp or gear?" and lets you choose which punishment.

One other thing: Why is it that the pray command always sets you at 10 health? No idea why it was set that way but possibly change that? Not really a big deal but having to rush to bank/healer after a death is just kind of an insult to injury type thing. *shrugs* Random idea on that one.
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Octothorpe
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Joined: 10 Jul 2008
Posts: 362
Location: below the 9 on your phone

PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 8:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Death Reply with quote

Craig wrote:
Something I've been thinking about(and wishing for) with feats/stat gains to be able to enjoy the boost from them is that instead of it acting like dead(i.e able to reduce your current level promoting going X amount negative to next level before gaining the feat/stat) and instead would just add the requisite amount to EXP to Next. So for the level 20 stat point with the cost of 3 million would take you from 2 million to level up to 5 million for next level. Having Death act in the same way would make it a little more forgiving because you aren't losing levels at all and losing access to spells/skills/feats(does that happen?) etc. Biggest gripe/concern here is that sometimes on death because of random HP loss you can end up further down on total HP than you were originally at that level which for same classes can actually because of players thinking they are ok for area A again even though they just dropped 10 extra health thus lower buffer.


+1
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Ares
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Joined: 19 Dec 2006
Posts: 970

PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:26 pm    Post subject: Hitpoints Reply with quote

You don't change hitpoints when you die and regain a level anymore. Only when you abandon a class or advance as a different class than you did the first time.
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Craig



Joined: 04 Oct 2016
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2016 11:47 pm    Post subject: Re: Hitpoints Reply with quote

Ares wrote:
You don't change hitpoints when you die and regain a level anymore. Only when you abandon a class or advance as a different class than you did the first time.


The overall total doesn't change anymore no, but when you die the loss is still random even if you go up to what you were at prior.

For instance I just died and lost a level which resulted in a drop of 22 hp. Despite only gaining 11 or 12 from the initial advancement to that level.

Say level 10-11 changes hp from 75 to 90 then a death from 11-10 can drop you to 65 even though when you go back to 11 you'll be back at 90.

Also this is something that might not be clear to a lot of people at first glance until they start taking damage unless they run a custom prompt though that might just be me and not using score to look at health totals.
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Verbannon



Joined: 30 Sep 2013
Posts: 398

PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2016 2:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think gear loss should remain with death, but just instead make it so you get an xp multiplier when you die, to accelerate your recovery back to your previous level. And lessen the xp loss of repeated deaths.

The problem with death isn't the gear loss, actually I think thats a good thing, it creates motivations for exploring and figuring out a path to gear recovery. Other then tokens. (Honestly I hate tokens)

The problem with death especially at the mid-low levels is that it can put a player into a pit of inescapability. Where they can't gain xp faster then they lose it by dying. I know a couple players that spent over a real life year on and off trying to level past 14-16 but they couldn't because they kept dying.

Thats actually why Underhelm eventually left, he just couldn't gain anymore levels. Those tricks that people use to quickly powerlevel, are really, non-intuitive and I think damaging the game. Especially as partial use of them is a requirement just to level.

And of course, I also would like there to be an xp trickle, tied to time on the game. So people who spend most of their time Rping and interacting can still level. And fear of people just sitting around doing nothing, just to gain levels, is a really stupid and weak point against it. Since there is just no rational reason to sit and do nothing when you could be rping.
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Uriel



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 68
Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2016 1:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Saide, I like your idea. Grinding and re-equipping can be lost time that might be better spent having fun doing RP, exploring, adventuring, PK. I like the concept of getting people into the game as quickly as possible, having fun. Thanks for sharing!
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Verbannon



Joined: 30 Sep 2013
Posts: 398

PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 6:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I want to point out that the reason I stayed playing the game, even though I never really rped until I was level 26, was because Shadowgate did exploration better than anywhere. The world was big. there was always someplace to go and most importantly, the exploration felt meaningful. Spend two weeks trying to crack that impossible puzzle at the theater or struggle for hours guessing words trying to figure out what arbitary syntax opened a door and recklesdly braved new areas of unknowable level adjustement. Dying endlessly in the attempt.

All because I never knew what useful item laid in wait as a reward

Lets focus on improving shadowgates strengths I say. Loki had the right idea before he left. If you want to keep new players, rule adjustements wont help at all. What the game needs is a cleanup. Fix old areas, hide broken code, balance items.

And if thats too boring for you, dont mess with whats not broken. Add new, entertaining for yourself to make content instead. If the problem was equipment loss then that would have been a problem forever ago as well, not just now. The only items people have ever shown a real fear of losing are sentimental irreplacable items. And Nienne already has something for those items. And if thats not enough, Its probably no sweat at all for the code of those items to be saved to a players sheet in a note by request. To act as a wishlist item.
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saide
Immortal


Joined: 18 Mar 2007
Posts: 362

PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the issue is that ShadowGate does not exist in a vacuum.

I agree with you that we need new areas and we need to balance old areas. We also desperately need an item standard. So that creators in the future know relatively what power an item from an area within x level range should be and so do players.

However, I think equipment and experience loss is an issue now, at least when it comes to attracting new players. There are lots and lots of games that can attract people's attention and while we are definitely a niche market, we still compete against some of them. Most of them don't treat death in a fantasy setting anywhere near as harshly as we do.

It does not feel good to spend your limited time on a game and then die at the end of the night, losing all the experience and equipment you have worked for. Which ultimately makes it feel as if you have wasted your time. It is true that if you are on SG long enough you accept the fact that it is the reality of the game, I do not think most new people will get that far because I think a lot of them, after the first couple times of having this happen will do something else (as in play another game).

In the past when people didn't have as many options I think this was different.
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saide
Immortal


Joined: 18 Mar 2007
Posts: 362

PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've updated death so that equipment takes approximately 50% damage on death but it stays with you - and there is no longer experience loss. As of now token gear is still not repairable.

I am implementing this on a trial basis to see what impact it has on people playing the game and I've set it up so that it can be changed back to the way it previously worked by simply issuing a command.
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Verbannon



Joined: 30 Sep 2013
Posts: 398

PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2016 5:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well if it has no discernable impact, you should change it back.
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kellan



Joined: 27 Oct 2013
Posts: 39

PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2016 5:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've held off on taking about this, because it felt like it was useless. However, I'll go ahead and get my two cents in, because damnit I am bored. I'm going to repeat this over and over Saide until you get it Razz You seem to not understand me when I keep telling you that all the stuff you're trying has been tried before. You can't fix "SGS" niche with CODE! You are wasting your life and I hate to see that. We can't recruit new players as we have ZERO players now and no wizzes. Who the hell would even give us that chance?

You want to fix SG. Simple. You, Nienne and whom ever the fuck is left takes the game over completely, you quit playing politics with Garrett and you do what you think is right, however, you've lost most of the hard hard core rpers, because you're alienating what they find fun while it hasn't brought any new hack-n-slasher back to the game or returned any old ones for extended periods.

I'm a pharmaceutical sales rep in real life and we have a saying it is easier to get a doctor who is already writing your drug to write more than getting someone to new to use it for the first time. The same thought process applies completely to SG. Older players first than worry about new players. The reason being simple older players playing makes the game look more attractive and gives us people to promote internally.

You want to fix SG, here is my suggest. You do a MASSIVE world event where EVERYONE and I mean EVERYONE is killed/incapacitated/loses power/retires. Everyone loses access to HM account and we all start from SCRATCH. you guys take a week or two redoing the mud in minor fashion, moving continents, you change gods, you kill gods, you promote(players to deities), you change the game to such an extent that it is new to us, but MAINLY we all start from scratch and get a chance to see it again. We promote during this time and we try to see if people who are gone want to still RP. It might not work and it's like a fucking HAIL Marry.

Lastly, if you guys don't really feel like giving something so crazy a chance like this or you don't have someone to avatar it, than why keep trying? It needs to be extreme whatever you try. It needs to be so crazy that people are like WTF! You have to wake people up and make them want to log it, this board, the wholist and there FACEBOOK friends/page is GOING nuts. You can't do it alone, so why don't you guys start promoting people who have offer to help you for years. There are people whom have WROTE numerous shit for you guys only to never have it point in(this isn't me), there are people who want to player, but feel discouraged, got a facebook message telling you to make the game great again today. When leaders don't want to lead, you leader yourself. You've been trying so just go the finally step, because Garrett has quit on this place and none of his limited input matters anymore. If he wants it to matter he should just close the fucking place down. Secondly, I know N is lawful good as fuck in RL, but she needs to become more NG. You can't always play nice and this isn't SEASONAL or CYLICAL anymore. We have been told that for years and for years, I've been saying that Cycle is getting smaller and smaller, others have as well. SG has a ton of shit to fix, we HAVE to fix it together two wizzes and a bunch of drop bys isn't going to work.

I think you'd have a lot of people who would help, I don't know for sure. However, you need to reach out to them. You need to talk to them and see why they play and then piece together a plan. I know that lots of players think I'm a RP nazi, but I grew up loving the deep, dark storytelling here combined with the adventuring. I don't need the latter to play SG, but I sure as fuck need the former.

Alzar who wants his fucking storytelling back
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Mister Black



Joined: 03 Sep 2016
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2016 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've stepped away from the game long enough at this point that I feel like I can give my opinion in a more level headed fashion.

I miss SG. I miss having an outlet for rp and a world to immerse myself in and meet new and interesting characters. The more I think on it the less the mechanics themselves have ever really mattered to me.

So why is it that I and so many others so vehemently protested the changes which make things more accessible for newbies?

I think because it ruined the narrative we grew up in this world with. Death was meant to be something that scared the characters. Advancement was meant to be difficult and time consuming. Growing powerful was supposed to be meaningful and some people just never managed to get over certain humps. This was part of the story of the world and how those of us who truly immersed ourselves in the world felt it should be.

Narratives can be changed though, and the world can still be immersive so long as the mechanics and the story flow in the same direction. If management wants to make this world a place where you can easily attain your goals and dreams and death is not a real threat then what I ask is that when these changes are made we also focus on changing the narrative of the world as a whole.

Make reincarnation an official player rp point. Make players the chosen of the gods with a purpose to fulfill that perhaps they don't understand now but one day will. Make the story of the world important again. Make this an rp first mud.

I miss a world of vibrant characters where I can lose myself for hours, and I'm sure there are many who feel the same.

Just my thoughts.
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ViolaRose



Joined: 20 Apr 2015
Posts: 66

PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2016 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I feel like Alzy's post should be a thread all its own, but since it isn't I'll just go on ahead here..

First, I like the changes to death. I never really considered it to be a big deal either way, but I never really regarded death as much more than a nuisance, and not really any fun, and it didn't add any particular sort of challenge to the game... it was just annoying. Like having to grind for feats and stats, as Craig said above. Just more grinding to do. Grind, grind, grind.

Second, Alzar.. You definitely win points for being spirited and saying fuck a lot. Very Happy I think shaking things up wouldn't be the worst idea. I love the idea of everyone starting from scratch - or at least having our chars wiped to nil, losing hm, and being rid of hm accounts for anything beyond tracking who's who for the imms, etc. Some of us are attached to our particular characters, though, so allow us to keep our names and memories, at least.

I also agree that Nienne, Saide, somebody with an actual PRESENCE needs to be running the show. Sorry, G. ShadowGate NEEDS to be a community of players and wizards. You've shown no interest in being a part of our community.. You do not participate in our discussions. You offer us no opinions nor any direction. Are you even there at all? Do you do anything which makes ShadowGate a better place, or are you just holding it tight and trying to squeeze its last breaths from it? Hand over the leadership to somebody who actually cares about the game. Personally I'd vote for Nienne. She has always been helpful, dedicated and responsive. I think she could take the MUD in a good direction, and do so in a fair and balanced way.

I also agree that the doors should be open to former players who want to help - especially when it comes to avatars. Why not give a call on Facebook, on this forum, for old players who would perhaps be interested in returning and giving it a shot... what is there to lose at this point? We can code all the new areas we want, but it won't make much of a difference if the world is stagnant. Areas are nice. They can be walked through once or twice, but they can only hold one's attention for a small amount of time. And of course players should also be held accountable for plots, moving things along, etc., but there's really only so much we can do.. especially when the playerbase is down to practically nothing.

I'd also like to see implemented some hourly/daily/weekly/monthly tasks that keep people coming back. It seems to work for mobile games? Would something like that favor people who have more time to log in? Probably.. but we've tried to hard to accommodate and balance things for people who don't have much time, and it hasn't really made any difference. Maybe we've been so successful that people see no point to logging in except for once every few years Very Happy

Will ANYTHING save ShadowGate? I am not particularly hopeful. The truth of the matter is that we're not going to attract new players. It's just not going to happen. And, frankly, I think our old playerbase has simply grown up and moved on with their lives. I don't think they're waiting on the sidelines for that ONE change that is going to make the game worthwhile again.

That said, keep on keeping on, ShadowGate! As long as everyone involved is still having fun doing what they're doing, then all is well.


Last edited by ViolaRose on Fri Nov 18, 2016 5:07 pm; edited 3 times in total
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