Okay, I'm a lightweight I know, but I can't hack the pace of this invasion thing.
Don't get me wrong - I really like the idea. It's exciting! There's a new challenge, and outposts aren't as safe as we thought they were. I like having to RP around unpredictable obstacles - I just kind of sweep them into the plot/character-development and it adds to the richness for me. And it's also triggered some wonderful moments in RP. Some of the wilder heroic excesses I've seen have been superb - absolutely hilarious, I've laughed my socks off. Also, I love how everyone's united to fight together, it's really enhanced the sense of community.
But ... since it began, my overall experience of the game has been much less fun and much more stressy. Not stressy-exciting. Stressy-miserable, OOC. And I don't think I'm the only one. So what's going on?
Speaking for myself ... I'm a role-player, not a power-player. I level up where it serves character, and I'm addicted to story. Big or small plot, I'm not fussy, but I want that narrative arc. There is some of this built into the progression towards each DK. But because the drive always comes back to life, I tend to regard the whole DK thing as a framework, and get my fix through reading and writing RP.
The invasions have so far been very intense. Threat-levels seem to be high or higher much of the time. Walls get built up when it's calm, and then come crashing down to zero, day after day. Everyone's throwing themselves into defence like there's no tomorrow. Spending all their stamina, getting covered in gore or ripped to shreds in the jungle, and then cracking chronospheres to carry on for longer. Yay! I don't mind people doing that, at all. Whatever they enjoy. But I don't enjoy doing it all the time. Click-click-click-failboat - it's driving me crazy.
I know I don't have to. I can do what I like. But in fact - it's not quite so easy. It's really hard to RP non-invasion related stuff, when the streets are full of exhausted players flopping about waiting for the end of the world to come, or bloodied heroes staggering in to get rat-paks before going out for more, or people nailing themselves to planks against impossible odds. I honestly feel guilty leaving them to it. But even putting that aside, how can you ignore them and just RP a card-game or whatever, without feeling like a bit of a dick? Perhaps for this reason, defence has become the main focus of RP attention in outpost chatspaces, for days and days, and some role-players are getting stressed by it. We want to play other stories too.
Perhaps if it was a huge great plot point, if something big and climactic was being puppet-mastered by CMJ, then we could all look forward to life being changed, but stable, in the future. But, unless I'm much mistaken, this isn't the case and invasions are a permanent addition to the game. Like the Drive rebuilding itself, walls will fall and be rebuilt, outposts will be overrun and re-secured, ad infinitum. Role-playing heroic defense (or comic-heroic defense), in a high-intensity war that can't be won or lost, is pretty wearing and unrewarding - I find. So it seems to me, in the long-run, we're going to need to RP it differently, or else the RP's going to be a lot less fun.
Some of this is just that we need to settle down and get used to the new conditions. Eventually we'll adapt, and not all be so hysterical about it, and will accept that sometimes we'll have to deal with an overrun outpost because we didn't defend it enough. And we might also get more organised. Split the work up, so people can do their bit, and not feel they have to be permanently "on duty".
But I think some tweaks on the game side might also help. Here are some suggestions:
1) Longer periods at lower threat-levels, so the shit isn't going down all the time, all over the place. So that people can get used to the constant threat, and occasional outbreaks of real trouble, without feeling like the end of the world is constantly nigh.
2) Perhaps if monsters are concentrating in one or two places, others might experience a lull. So the troops needn't be spread so thinly all the time.
3) If rebuilding used more stamina but added more hitpoints, per click - it wouldn't take so long to burn up your stamina, and would leave more time available for RP (without the guilt of knowing you've got stamina left and aren't contributing).
4) If the walls come down to zero, and the threat level is max - surely the town must be overrun at that point? And surely it must then require everyone present to fight fight fight for a while, to drive the monsters back before rebuilding can begin?
5) If the town is overrun, then I'd like to see the text reflect this, and for the rebuilding not just to be about defences, but also about rebuilding inside. I.e. instead of just bouncing back up the hitpoints and dropping a threat-level, let it stay down longer, and use the text to reflect that the town has Been Through Something. And perhaps for the services to reflect that for a while, even when the attack has been repelled. Until it's been rebuilt enough.
6) Also, if a town is overrun - it would be nice to still have a chatspace available in which to be hysterical or valiant - just, with frequent monster attacks (maybe somewhere with a list of people slain, so if you're chatting hysterically and stop b/c you're failboated, people can see that at a glance).
7) Perhaps, also, the monster attacks inside the outpost could continue at reduced frequency, until a "walls secured" threshold was reached, somewhere above zero.
8) Also also (!) if a town is overrun - the text could maybe offer a particular map-square to those who decide to flee, where we could RP a refugee camp in the jungle.
Okay, I think I've exhausted my stock of ideas for today. Time to post and shut up. And whether you agree or disagree with me, I'd really like to see what you all have to say on the subject.
So, how do you really feel, Callia?
In all seriousness, I agree completely. I was all gung ho to fight off a big invasion once in a while when I first heard about it. Then, I realized that the threat would be constant and overwhelming. (I suppose the module is called onslaught for a reason) Here are my thoughts:
From an RP perspective, G isn't the guy who'll stand by and watch while there's a need to fight. He'll be the body they find beneath the overturned skronky pot amid the charred rubble, feet so far up monster arse they look like slippers. However, this big, heroic battle...thing...I had thought it'd be, doesn't work out so well when you can't win the fight.
I also agree that it detracts from other rp concerns, having to use all of your stamina and time fighting or building, instead of travelling and doing non-fighty stuff. I've noticed this has sidetracked GERM's latest already half-assed endeavor.
However, that being said, I do feel like this is closer to how the island was intended to feel. I mean, we're dropped naked from a plane into a critter infested jungle, our only respite being some hastily cobbled together towns. It shouldn't be a cushy vacation spot.
My thoughts on changes:
Instead of a constant slow build up of monsters everywhere at once, with occasional spikes, perhaps make it much more infrequent, but a true ONSLAUGHT of monsters. Say, one or two every couple days, at one outpost, but it requires the coordination af HOLYSHITEEVERYONEONTHEISLANDRIGHTNOW! to beat them back and liberate the city because it happens so suddenly (i.e., instead of 404 going, in the course of an hour or two, blue...blu/green...blue...green...green/mauve...ecru/cyan) and then an attack, there's maybe a variable 5-30 minute window to rally the troops before it goes to absolute hell. This would also allow for the evilly fun problem of false alarms (alert level spikes for 15 minutes, then nothing happens--could account for monsters getting more clever) Then, if the monsters breach, they could retreat, leaving only devastation for us to deal with. (<---Yeah, it's a preposition, ya wanna fight about it?)
Then, if the outpost falls because everyone worked together and still failed, it could take longer to rebuild in between invasions, and getting the HP over the threshold to be functional could be a cause for celebration. Flavor text after a breach could be along the lines of
"404 has fallen to the hordes of monsters. Sure, it's hard to tell, but the scrap heaps are somewhat deeper and everythings just that much more covered in oil. It's time to start the rebuilding."
And the businesses stay closed, and that message remains, until the city builds back up to, say, 25000 hp.
Just my thoughts.
First of all... WHAT SHE SAID. From my conversations with other players, this is what a lot of us have been feeling.
I don't have a lot to add. Calliaphone has pretty much covered the territory. One point: on being able to reinforce in larger increments -- already, we have eight players at 100%, and there are many others who are very, very close. It won't be long before the entire first page of the HoF list is made up of people who have maxed out the skill.
Right now there's no reward structure for continuing to work on the skill after 100%. You don't get any better at it no matter how much you hammer. In the other thread, there's been a fair bit of support for being able to say that you hammer 5 or 10 boards at once, so it's clearly something people want. But should it come free? It will be more valued if people have worked for it.
How about letting the larger-increment reinforcement links open up as you keep practicing past 100%? It would even make a certain amount of sense -- there are physical limits beyond which reinforcement can't become less tiring per board, but you'd still be able to become more efficient.
This way, from a gameplay point of view, there'd still be a goal to aim for.
YES YES YES YES YES.
I cannot express how much I agree with everything that has been said here. I like the Invasions as a story arc -- it's forced a lot of characters to step up to bat, myself included. I love the teamwork, and the universal change in RP tone has been fascinating, but I'm exhausted, both in and out of character. You can only keep up the defend-to-the-death mentality for so long. That mentality is great -- in small doses -- but as a long-term staple of character, it's not interesting or fun, especially with no end in sight.
I think spreading out the attacks would go a long way towards helping people adjust to this new iteration of the game, as well as get back into the normal swing of life on the Island. I miss the old happy-go-lucky feeling in the Outposts, the casual conversations and games. The only place really open to that anymore is the clan halls, and those have their own unique limits.
I think these reactions are fairly universal, and I'm sure people will get accustomed to this new way of life and tone down the trench-warfare mentality over time, but we have to be given enough space from the game in order to do this. Perhaps if attacks came in longer-term waves -- a couple of weeks without them, a week with, and so on.
How we ultimately solve this problem is debatable, but some way or other we are going to have to figure out how strike a balance between war-life and life-as-usual.
This is all very interesting feedback. The impression I'm getting is that folks in general are fond of the idea, but the algorithms by which monsters are sent out could use some work (and the usability aspects of reinforcing the walls, too).
The wall-reinforcement thing isn't quite as trivial as it appears at first glance because of the varying amounts of Stamina that would be required as the player levels up - but it's certainly no huge thing to pull off. The algorithm changes... Well, Sessine and Zolo and I were talking about that when I was first thinking about Onslaught, and I think it's time to re-think the way monsters are assigned. I'll keep working on this.
(in the last game I made - a game for arcade cabinets based on Dinosaur Comics - it took about two weeks to write the core game, then six months to fine-tune the numbers to achieve a perfect "feel" to the difficulty curve. This is simpler in some ways and more complex in others, but I'm sure I'll nail it eventually)
When it comes to semi-permanent damage being applied to the Outpost - that would be awesome, but I'm still looking for ideas on how to best implement that. Keep 'em coming.
Disclaimer: The following rant does not represent the views or opinions of the Network or any of its affiliates. It may or may not reflect views of reality. You have been warned.
The Outpost Invasions, when they first came in, were great. There was a brief period where everyone banded together and DEFENDED THOSE OUTPOSTS! The RP in New Pittsburgh the first night was great. It was a battlefield, and it led to some great RP. It even led to my character becoming what he is now: a tiny Vietnam-era US Soldier. I was planning on going Midget for a while anyway, and the whole battlefield thing works well. (Good at fighting, etc.) The problem becomes, I was planning on going back to a more normal Dave after the invasions died down.
I mean, I don't think it should be thrown out entirely, it's a good idea. It just seems like the outposts are under CONSTANT invasion (at least, most of them are. I've personally only seen Kittania at a heightened alert once, though I've heard it's been overrun before) and there's hardly a lull. As G said, GERM's half-baked idea for an endeavor has been pretty much put on hold because of this, and personally, I'm kind of tired of it myself. If I want to go questing, it'll send me to, say, Squat Hole. But if IC is at a 50 or higher metric, I hate leaving it like that, so I run out into the jungle, fight until I'm out of stam, and come back in to see nothing has changed. And this is a Midget's full stamina bar worth of monsters killed. I understand that it's designed so that multiple people need to be fighting but still, I'd LOVE to see that my contribution is making a DENT, much less a difference. And then I end up fighting two or four masters, and that's less time spent going for my quest. And like G, Dave isn't one to run away, or stand and watch. He'll be the body next to G's, plasma gun half-melted from overheating, lying on a pile of British Bedstead Men, Gazebos, Hitchhikers, and Undead Dreaming Catfish Gods.
But when the battle can't be won, only delayed, it kind of puts a damper on the whole thing. I like G's idea of every couple of days, an outpost comes under real attack, that requires pretty much the full attention of every contestant on the island, and leaves that outpost (at least its description) changed for the next couple of days either way. Then at least it would seem like the defense matters.
I've been mostly-away and am new to the invasion stuff, but so far my impression agrees with the others here. Yes, it is exciting at first but it seriously interferes with other game goals. I am not yet much of a RPer but I can see this would be maddening. And reinforcing the walls is really boring. An automatic "Reinforce some more" option (analogous to automatic fighting) might help some.
Shortening the duration of invasions would be great.
I'm in agreement. I love Outpost defence. But it needs (for me) to be less 100% 100% of the time. GERM has started drinking in response to the stress. This isn't big. It is clever, however.
What a wonderful idea it is. Capital show Dan and Z and Sessine, a huge round of applause from me.
Wholey agree with almost everything that's been said above. Calliaphone said is first and best. I won't repeat.
A few minor issues. Calli first.
Suggestion 4. (Monsters over-running outposts.) That is in fact the case.
Suggestion 8. (Refugee camp for roleplayers.) What about the map square directly underneath (not south) of the outpost in question? I haven't looked at these places, but surely they're still OK? This might work for suggestion 6 as well?
Like Sessine's suggestion.
Now another point to add.
I'm 99% role player. I was carefully keeping Cantankerous Biggs at level 10. I want a character that can get around to whereever I want him, without worrying about it to much. Level 10 gives access to plenty of req to buy whatever you need and I've built up my chem pack till it's mighty potent. I'd hate to meet Horatio for tea, I'd have to start grinding through to get to a reasonable level again. I keep at level 10, as opposed to 13 or 14 because I'm a bit of a nervous Nelly who likes to keep plenty of room for mistakes. Good job too, because after tonights shindig in Squathole, I found myself on level 13.
Allow me to expand on that. That's starting from significantly less exp than is needed to get to level 10, to get to enough exp to get to level 14, (and hence have my master hunt me down) including 7 trips to the failboat (I think, this is judging from the drop in all the favour I was slowly building up). This is when, for the second half, I was desperately trying to fail as much as I could. I was using favour to get off the boat with less than 40% stamina, and on the last occasion less than 30%. Damned hard to fail too much when the game keeps sending you level 1 and 2 monsters, but giving you the exp for monsters of your level.
I don't think I'm the only one who doesn't want to meet Horatio, people who are trying to build trading empires for example, have to start all over after meeting Horatio. You (CMJ) have carefully put in place many different ways of playing the game, which is great. Some of them involve not going through a DK. Now maybe I could have been more careful, I've learnt a lesson, and I'll certainly be more careful next time, but still.
The point of all that, was to say, make it easier for us to not level up when we don't want to. In particular, let killing monsters give you exp proportional to their level, not yours.
I do like this new addition, it's good fun in a lot of ways, it gives a good backdrop to roleplaying, it's got people working together far more than they ever have done before that I've noticed, and it's got people spreading around the Island more. (It used to be that Biggs had at least a comment on pretty much every page in Squathole. Not anymore!) But...
I) Give us all a bit more of a break from it, it's taking over everything.
II) Give us some way of speeding up the keyboard grind of building defences, and
III) Scale the exp to the monster level.
Of these I) is, IMHO, by far the most important. It is, as Callia noted, starting to get stressful.
On a rather lighter note, I like all the little internal references, well the two that I've noticed anyway. Elias making an appearence in IC with his callia shells, and the giant Midget in the Hole. I do rather like these sort of touches. Nice One.
I think people's expectations can be summed up thusly:
- Attacks relatively more intermittent
- Failure relatively more devastating
- Walls relatively more useful/less tedious
sing it, sisters!
I was just typing what TehDave was saying about feedback joy on your efforts in the jungle.
(Great drunks think alike.)
When it comes to mucking about with multiple barricade reinforcing turns, you don't have to worry about changing stamina rates too much. Charge it all at the initial (higher) rate. I can assure you that people will still happily accept the slight lack of efficiency for the sake of being able to just get it done.
The frequency is amazingly strenuous.
Between Pyre Kasen and myself, we have managed to hold SH throughout the break. But today, Pyre's player went back to classes, and I had to pack for going back myself. The day life as usual resumes, Squat Hole comes down.
We need far more lulls now that the real world is coming back.
Compared to some skills, Reinforcement seems awfully quick to level... In a matter of days we've got people at 100, compared to fighting and traveling skills where *nobody* has hit 100 so far in Season Two, period. If you simply increase the stamina requirement and the HP effect, and leave exp alone, the main complaint (tediousness) will be mitigated. I don't think you'll find many whining about it taking more days to max out what's already a pretty easy skill to max.
I'm in full agreement with everything that has been said already, and I want to reinforce further the idea that the reinforcement ability will go beyond the level 100 that it is right now, so that we are not only able to do it more, but able to do it more effectively.
(That goes for every other skill. According to Cuthbert's,
"Higher levels in Insults skills will also improve your chances of casting successful Insults, and reduce the chances of fumbling."
Is that really the case? It's kind of hard to tell...)
I've definitely seen a fast improvement in my frequency of success with insults in the teens relative to when I was starting out.
I seem to have hit quote instead of edit.
What Calli said.
I don't want to complain about the idea of the Onslaught, because the concept is cool and has led to some good things.
But the execution is making me miserable.
I could go on, but it would just be a repeat of what others have said. Let me just say: yeah, what they said.
I agree with prior input.
My two cents:
a) There's no clan hook, and thereby, no bragging rights. If a clan can band together to defend an outpost, that means something.
b) There's no individual player hook: If a hero saves a city, there ought to be SOMETHING, other than a higher action skill in the HOF.
c) This one's a more anecdotal observation: Right now, NP is a quest city for me. Getting into NP is hard (burned two chronospheres on trying to get into the city. Managed to nail up a few boards). Ought to be a badge if you enter a city with 0 and get it up to a few hundred HPs, despite a breach.
Ultimately, onslaught is a big stam burn: People are naturally defending the best food source (PV) which as of this writing has about 2.7m HPs. The rest are falling like shantytowns before a bulldozer. Is there anything we get in exchange for such a stamburn? No, beyond an action skill.
Most players are going to go about their business, particularly if they're more motivated by DKing or Questing.
Keeping cities open without bragging rights for players or clans is sort of an altruism test. Few shall pass it.
That's my take.
Like the idea; execution needs tweakage, IMO.
Few shall pass it? Hardly.
DICE has been doing that the entire time, no real complaints there.
Why do you need some instant gratification for doing something to benefit the island? Being a hero is largely a thankless job.
Besides, who would give you the badge? "Oh, here's some recognition for doing something that saves yourself from being slaughtered by an assault of monsters. I suppose doing that also consequently helps us, but still. Thanks."
You're also discounting the likelihood that others who aren't in the clan aren't helping the war effort as well. Which, happens very often.
Well, hey... if we can get a medal for visiting the kissing booth, KK, there's no real reason we shouldn't be able to get one for defending an outpost with our life's blood. A bit of recognition does wonders to boost morale.
1. As stated by others above, the frequency and intensity of the Onslaughts is bit overweight. It is overbearing 'normal' RP and gameplay, and like some others, I'm finding it stressful enough to reduce my pleasure in playing.
2. Level 1 and perhaps 2 contestants should not be returned from failboat to an over-run city. You just get burned over and over.
3. When a city is over-run, it should be possible to 'travel' out of the surrounding jungle. i.e not have to go back into the city to access travel. This is, again, particularly relevant at lower levels.
4. Was it anticipated that there would be contestants actively wanting to see posts over-run, so they can go in and score huge Exp points? This is already happening*, and seem undesirable to me. Players taking that recourse are going to advance much quicker than those who don't.
And again like others, I do actually like the feature, I just think it needs some tweaking.
*Ref: chat in Kittania about 45 minutes prior to this post.
I feel much the same as everyone else in this This started out as fun, but now is becoming stressful. It was a great way for me to RP Pyre more and he does well in war situations regardless, but there's always pressure, both in character and out of character. My problem is even bigger; I'm a European player and am often on early. If I see the Squat Hole under attack at 1 PM, there's usually only one or two clan members on-line and an equal amount of people in the Squat Hole; I sort of feel like I'm defending the place alone at times like that. There has been one point when I went through a total of EIGHT NewDays in 4 hours to help keep things up and running, the last half hour spent just reinforcing the walls over and over with Adder (Most others were out of stamina), hoping for cavalry to arrive at NewDay. (And it did! Many thanks to g_rock, Kestrel, Pied Piper, Nathaniel and all others who helped at this point.) It was almost cinematic.
I felt elated at this point, true... Also hungry, since I'd had to delay breakfast for 5 hours. And my fingers hurt from fighting over a thousand monsters.
Also, right now, IC is, well, screwed. And there's 22 people on-line. If it's overrun, I can't help, I'm level 1.
So yes, I support longer lulls, concentrated attacks (Only one outpost at a time), quicker reinforcing and perhaps clearer indications of how much peace an outpost'll have. Also, perhaps some scaling to the amount of players on-line - if that doesn't exist, yet - and a defence network channel so we don't have to disturb people in the CG with our panic messages.
Also, between the ton of exp you get in a breech and the high level you need to be to be useful thanks to the non-scaling monsters, there's usually only a very small window between being too long level to help and being so high levelled you risk being carried of to the Drive. I fought for three days to get to a level where I was useful and was at level 15 half a day later... Fortunately, I wasn't forced to face the drive until after the place was safe. By this time, though, I had over 200k exp.
Well, to me it sounded like,
"I've been fighting long and hard for so long! Where is my cookie?"
-The response would have to be, "Well, the baker's over there dying/fighting for their life/engaged in the defense/rallying the troops. You'll have to go without. Sorry."
I think a better paraphrasing would be, some players work better with cookies, so lets give them a few. My take is that I'm going for it without cookies, but if some were being given out then I wouldn't say no.
On a sidenote, is it just me or has the lag seriously ramped up since Onslaught began?
Um, what everyone....else....said..........came a bit late to the party.
I play a happy stupid silly little character, and throwing her into a war has been fun and I really do like the idea. But.
I don't know if I'm the only one who on occasion spent entire New Days just RPing and talking to people only to suddenly realize whoops! Another NewDay! Gotta waste stam fighting for the last five minutes of this day! Maybe I am. I am primarily a roleplayer, with the mechanics of the game (well, the fighting angle anyway) taking a rather distant second place. Not so anymore, and that's actually not a thing I'm complaining about; our characters are in a war, in theory they've always been in a war, and being forced to realize that is actually very awesome.
But, um, now I spend all of my New Day fighting, then pulling out a Chronosphere, then spending all that new day fighting, then pulling out a Chronosphere...and I don't RP, because what kind of jerk would dance about being an idiot while their city is burning around them?
I am, quite abruptly, turning into a powerplayer simply because I'm sick of Failing every five minutes. I'm turning into the grumpy mean person I am at work because it feels like work, and believe me when I say I get quite enough of work at work. It's not why I come here, that's for sure.
In conclusion, mmmmmm. Cookies. **goes to eat some oreos even though it's 9:30 AM**
It's not just you. Which, of course, only adds to the panic and stress when Ace High's got zero hp and oh god would the page just load already!
Hi, my name's Tyr, and I'm a speedrunner, and an RPer, Neither of which I've felt free to do since Onslaught started. It feels selfish and bad to do anything but pour stam into the walls and fight in the jungle. What's that? Doesn't a lot of jungle fighting mean it would be easy to speed? Not if you're living on ratpacks in 404, and playing anything but a midget so you'll be able to run halfway across the map when an outpost's in trouble. I spent 8 new days yesterday trying to keep 404 up, and felt terrible when I finally had to go to bed, cause I knew there was a good chance it was going to fall any second. This is a game! I play it for fun!
I know that my way of playing isn't the way that everyone plays the game. But I feel like I'm not playing Improbable Island anymore. I'm playing Onslaught, and I don't like this game very much. Yes, it's an interesting concept. But it's not fun. It could be, with some changes. Longer lulls are a must. Having only one or two outposts being attacked at a time would be great. And I like the idea of false positives - as long as it become obvious rather quickly that the world is not actually ending, and we can go about our business. Hell, feints would be cool. The warning level spikes in Squat Hole, only for the monsters to attack Kittania once everyone's run to defend SH.
And you know what? I do want something shiny to show for my efforts: walls that stay up for more than 10 minutes before everything goes to hell again.
Suggestion: give Reinforcement a lower limit as well as an upper one. It drives me crazy to have a maxed out skill, and still have times when I put 2 hp on the walls.
I agree with Tyr, and callia, and Hairy Mary, and Skidge, and... er, probably most of you. Too many to quote!
But I am enjoying the idea of Onslaught, and I hope it gets balanced out soon so more RP can get focussed on... It's really nice to see good RP happening when the attack's at a low, but sad it can't really happen when the threat level's spiked.
Um... but yeah! Could be great fun once it's tweaked a bit. Thanks, CMJ etc.
I am basically just here to add another voice, because I have to say that I agree or nearly agree with everything that has been said.
I do have to say that I really, really like the atmosphere that the invasions bring. As a new player, you work your way through all that flavour text, and it is the end of the world! There are bombs and monsters and you have been dumped somewhere that is entirely full of crazy. Then you show up in NewHome, and get yelled at by Corporal Punishment for a while, and you are thinking 'oh boy this is a war'. Then you go through the museum, and realize that there is even more crazy, and that computers have poofed, and that there are mutants and jokers and catpeople.
But then you go back out to NewHome, and there are people handing you cigarettes and telling you that everything will be alright, that you can beat things up in the jungle for clothes, and here is a flyer for new people. Or maybe they give you tea, or sandwiches, or cookies, or steak, or scones, or milkshakes. You start thinking 'maybe this isn't so bad'. Then you go into the CG and nobody seems to think that there is anything wrong with this island at all. It's a party! And you finally make it to Pleasantville for some steak and meet some grizzled veteran who says that he didn't like it when he first got here, either, but now he's adapted.
And then you go and beat the Drive, and it's not as scary as you thought, and it remakes itself anyway, and now you're a kittymorph, or a zombie, and now you can tell other nude humans that things aren't so bad, and maybe you'll help them find some clothes.
Basically what I am saying is that it is nice to have some reinforcement that it is the end of the world, and that it doesn't bother experienced islanders as much as it bothers you - who just got dropped out of a plane nude and may have landed rather badly and anyway there were bombs - because they are used to it, or crazy, or both.
But my favourite place to rp has always been right in the towns. People can see you and join in, but you're not trying to shout through a pile of other people like you would in the CG. But now I really feel like a jerk if I do that. This is hilarious, because while rp-wise Ada might be veryvery interested in that sandwich someone just dropped, or concussed, or tired, or asleep, player-wise I am probably burning new days to keep monsters out of an outpost. I still feel like a jerk for not roleplaying that I am out there beating up monsters, though, which is kindof sad. The roleplay that's left in towns seems out of touch, or incredibly self-centred.
As I'm writing this, I believe that NewHome, New Pitts, Cyber City, and Central are all breached. I haven't checked them to be sure, but I'm fairly certain that every one of those outposts has fallen in the last four hours. That is way too many kinds of too much. As a player, I'm no longer motivated to go save them. They just fall again! As a character, I am going to have to go support an outpost if it is falling. If you point Ada in a direction and say "go there, do this", and you look like you know more than she does (this is not hard), she will go there, and do that.
I've found that I'm making myself rp-obvious in outposts less, because as a player I'm tired of just running from one outpost to the next all the darn time. If I make Ada obvious, someone will probably tell her to go to Cyber City, and then I grumble and get walking.
It would be much, much more fun if invasions didn't happen very often, but were absolute hell when they did. I'd get excited about them again! I'd want to go rushing off to the other side of the island to help out, rather than going because I feel obligated to.
Edit, because Tyr posted: SO MUCH yes about the reinforcement. I've got to nearly level 80, but I will still have moments where I smack a board up there for 2hp, 7hp, 5hp... If you were a real-life carpenter with a record like that, no one would want to hire you! Surely I am not that incompetent.
After having read all comments (ALL), I see that people care about others' wellbeing (or their selfishness, but it works the same in the end).
I must say, Callia, bravo. You have made a spark in the stock of black powder (and dark thoughts), it is becoming a wonderful firework (yeah!).
Now, since pretty much everything has been talked about (and re-talked about), I will just say this:since the beginning of this module, the player behind Paul, despite clearly saying the contrary, was using with every ounce of willpower (in his fingers) to help the outposts he was in (NP, SH, AH, etc.)(Just look, he's in the Lvl100 in Reinforcement).
But not anymore. Right now the character follows his questing, providing minimal help (from orange stam and whacky days) and some participation in RP in this journey; what he was usually doing before onslaught. Call it a break or whatever you want.
That would be all from me. Back to the game.
Some thoughts (since I find it too hard to put them all into nicely structured sentences).
I'm a powergamer, not a roleplayer and I've found that the Onslaught module has drawn me a bit more into rp'ing and interferes with my DK-grinding. I mention this so it's clear that it's not just the roleplayers that are suffering.
There's the guilt when questing at a peaceful village, the joy when you're doing it at one under attack, the "darn I'm leveling too quickly to get the quest done"... basically, what has been said before, actually, I'd better stop.
I'm curious though, does the Onslaught module take players online into account? 'cause I know that in (my) evenings there are 100+ players online, but this afternoon there were the whole 17... and every bloody outpost I went to with the exception of Pleasantville was breached or had shops closed. Which is rather annoying if you're lvl1 on a rank7.
Triage time. In other words, time to see how we can address the biggest problems in the shortest amount of time, on the understanding that we'll build upon these solutions later on (but for now let's just fix it damn it). Here's what I'm doing right now:
1. Sorting out a multiple-round reinforcement thing.
2. Adjusting the amount of HP given to the walls per reinforcement (making it less random).
3. Lowering the master difficulty slider.
4. Lowering the wall damage multiplier.
This is stuff I can do in a couple of hours, tops.
Love the bulk reinforcement!
Excited about the other changes as well, but they're less visible.
Um, I'm sure this is just me whining, but:
is it right that I get no exp for defeating the overrunning monsters, but still lose exp when I (inevitably) fail?
No. No, it isn't. I'll take a look at this now.
Thank you! I'll get back over there, then...
(EXP rewards are now a bit more appropriate to the monster, too)
Bulk reinforcements - massive improvement!
The rest? Have to wait and see overall effects.
bloody hell, that was fast. CMJ - thank you HUGELY for these changes, and for listening.
Two more cents:
a) multiple reinforcements - good.
b) let's assume I'm in NP, wading through critters, and I manage to slap up 500 points of wall. Is there a threshold where the wall is big enough to stop the invasion? If so, what is it? Because that would make the case for a coordinated effort, by a clan say, to send sufficient members to a town to stop the invasion.
c) Or is it simply a matter of killing everything in a town (ie, 100s of invasion critters) to get the invasion to stop. In short, what is the best way to fix a breach? It's pretty clear I can't do it by myself. I'm just wondering if anyone has done this yet, and what the strategy might be.
a) Glad you think so.
b) As it is right now, the Breach will stop once the Outpost wall hitpoints are higher than the number of monsters assaulting the Outpost.
c) The best way to fix a breach depends on the breach. If it's faster to fix the walls, do it - but the monsters aren't going to go away. No matter what the level of the walls, no Outpost will be breached if there are fewer than a thousand monsters stalking it. If there are more than 800 monsters, the walls take damage.
On the subject of making the invasions less frequent but more bloody, I'm tempted to make it so that the wall hitpoints drop immediately all the way to zero if an Outpost is breached. That should certainly prolong the length of the attack.
Can I say, don't necessarily want it too much easier, just happening a bit less often.
Edit: Wow CMJ, you read my post before I'd posted it!
Now that's taking 'listening to your players' to whole new levels.
but is there a reason why some outposts don't get overrun, even when wall hitpoints are zero and threat level is max (i'm assuming threat levels equate to number of monsters?) (eg IC today - HP zero most of the day, pub closed, Watcher on her way - but not a monster in sight within the town boundaries).
See CMJ's previous post, we must've kept the monster numbers under 1000, but over 800 to knock the walls down
The description of the Watcher being on her way is output when the warning level is above 90 - when it's above 100 the Outpost is breached. So I should probably write another bit of flavour text for when the alert level is over 100 but the walls are keeping the monsters out.
A few folo-ups:
a) Do monsters (here comes another one!) killed in breach count against total no of monsters attacking city?
b) Do they count differently than ones encountered in jungle? Are these two numbers actually one number?
c) Do monster numbers replenish during a breach or is it a static pool?
Looking for strategy fodder here.
I'd like to see if we can retake NP.
Like to also mention:
Do not reinforce until failboat anymore. You lose your reck now.
Am working on just that notion, Ada.
Of course, just making it a SWEET Network thing would be fun in and of itself.
But retaking a breached outpost? One of NP's difficulty? Seems there's more than enough glory to spread across our collective toast.
Will post in CG accordingly, as soon as I rally the Network.
I don't believe this was suggested, though it is much to read, and I am quite tired, but maybe you could add an exp. multiplier for defeating enemies in a row during a breach.
When invasion happens it is war, and war is hell, but there is no reason war cannot be organized, even on the battlefield soldiers have a medic. Not to mention that it's defense, defense of an outpost full of NPCs. Why can't the NPCs band together to aid the players fighting for them... well so to speak, obviously we could all just leave the damn outpost to rot and fall apart and nothing would happen to the NPCs, but that kinda kills the whole suspension of disbelief, at least for me.
Now that I've rambled my ramble, I thank you for take the time to read it.
*cough* NPCs do help out.
You'll see. It's a random event, but it's someone different in every Outpost.
Let it be noted that Skidge is now going to be stalking NewHome, in order to continue her possibly psychologically damaging, albeit non-romantic (or so she keeps insisting, over and over again, in an overly high voice, to anyone who looks at her funny), obsession with Mister Stern.
Don't want to make a new thread for this, so I'll say it here:
Thank you, CMJ, for adding in the multiple reinforcement button. It made me very happy and it made reinforcement a delight, rather than a mind-numbing chore. Well done!
I'm thinking about something; what about the contestants under level 10 (and who did no opt-in for being counted as a high-level, see preferences)?
They can reinforce the defenses, but do they count as killing the swarm when they venture in the jungle? And if the buildings get HP separated from the wall, what can they do?
Another question: what happens to the lil' ones when the 10 and highers have to defend themselves from a breach? Since they seem to be/are immune to this, couldn't there be some flavor text saying that others are fighting for their survival while they pick flowers (counting myself in)?
As a (somewhat belated) specific reply to Calliaphone original post ...
Oops, seems my reading was faulty.
"You are safe from the effects of Outpost invasions until you pass level ten in your first Drive Kill"
I just suppose I never had to face a true breach then, unlike Bakemaster. Imma sowwy.
It would be a bit unfortunate if a new rookie arrived in the game just as New Home was breached. No access to weapons, armour or free grenades, or even Corporal Punishment, FAQ or fourth area. Wouldn't be a good start for them I wouldn't have thought. They'd think the entire game consisted of getting hit by things far stronger than they, they'd be on the fail boat within seconds, and then would have lost there small amount of starting req and be unable to buy anything at all.
That's a good point actually, what happens if you do go through a DK and start in an outpost that's just been breached? Surely even the strongest of players would have problems there? Has this happened to anybody?
Rank isn't the problem. Level is. When an outpost is overrun, low-level contestants can be attacked by high-level monsters. You don't normally run into Foilwench at level 1. Or the Mongol Hordette at any level below 15.
I don't know if this is proving to be a problem, but if it is, here's a suggestion. First of all, if you're on the world map on an outpost square, let there be a message telling you what the state of play in the outpost is, this has been suggested elsewhere. Second, when someone comes back from their pleasent cuppa with Horatio, instead of putting them actually in the outpost, put them on the outpost's map square. In the normal way of things this is a purely cosmetic change, the two are just one click away from each other. If the outpost has been breached however, then it gives at least some sort of breathing space, and a player can decide to avoid the outpost, maybe attempt to make it elsewhere (easier of they're a kittymorph, harder if they're a robot), or at worst just camp out until the breach is over and they can buy armour and weaponry.
I'll start with apologising in advance as I did not read through all seventeen pages of the thread. Sorry.
My main problem with onslaught is its lack of symmetry. New Pittsburgh is bound to be periodically overrun, while Pleasantville remains the safest place on the whole island. Why is that? Mutated munchies.
Not every outpost is equally valuable to every IIslander, leading to New Pittsburgh receiving less attention, leading to me shedding foul-smelling zombie tears over its suffering.
Tune the onslaught down, think of poor zombies.
I think that's totally appropriate.
Following that same logic, then eBoy's needs balancing so that the prices are equal all around the island. Pleasantville won't fall because people like it. CC404 is under attack all the time because no one's up there to fight very often.
That's the point. The most important places to the most players are the most protected. Any other way would be unrealistic and wouldn't make any sense. Yes New Pittsburgh gets hit often, why? There aren't many people who like it very much, or go there unless they absolutely have to. Doesn't it make sens e that it'd fall?
I have to agree. It does suck for zombies, and robots, and people who like Cyber City, but it doesn't make any sense to throw more monsters at the outposts people like, or fewer at the ones people don't get around to walking to.
That said, I'm still in favour of attacks hitting harder, and faster, and scarier, and less often. If New Pitts and Cyb are almost always breached, people are either going to get stressed out and stop helping, or they're going to get bored and stop helping. The group effort we had going to protect the outposts right when they started was great. It was loads of fun. But now, someone running into a safe outpost, or the Grounds, or wherever, yelling "help Central is under attack!!" is probably just going to be ignored. The group effort seems mostly gone.
If it could be tuned in such a way, I think it would be interesting to have the cities besieged according to where they are as far as frequency and severity.
NewPittsburgh is just on the edge of the jungle, so it would be reasonable that the occasional small company of monsters would attempt to attack it on a regular basis. NewHome as well has this.
SquatHole and CC404 are both relatively hard to reach with large numbers (An army climbing the mountain or wading through the swamp? Difficult at best), but if the monsters were determined they could certainly pull off a large attack with low frequency.
AceHigh, Kittania, and Pleasantville all have the same thing of being actually in the jungles. This would make them prone to high number attacks more frequently, as well as small skirmishes. Pleasantville somewhat less so than the others, being that one side is bordered by a river (same problem as the swamp).
This leaves IC as a different thing. Monsters, if they've become more intelligent like She tells us they haven't, would have a different strategy than hit and run for here. It's in the middle of the plains, with high visibility to the jungle on all sides. Hardly any small bands would be even near there, and few would be so suicidal as to actually attempt to attack such a well armed settlement. HOWEVER, there is jungle on all sides. This, aided with the plains, means it would be very easy to mobilize a large force against IC, meaning BIG attacks when they happen.
Just some ideas (dangerous things that could take huge amounts of time and effort) that I've had about the invasions.
I think that invasions should happen more or less depending on how many people are in that specific outpost. My logic is that monsters can smell food, and they invade the outposts for food, so the invasions would happen more often if there was more food there.
It'd probably be hell to code, but it would (Partially) solve the problems that Cyber City and New Pittsburgh are having without making onslaught too easy.
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