Alchemy and Potions

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Dr Wahl
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Alchemy and Potions

Post by Dr Wahl » Wed May 03, 2006 5:28 pm

A new dynamic could be added to the game by adding the ability to create potions. One of the skills could be alchemy, which would govern your potion creating skills. The higher alchemy level you have, the more powerful potions. Things such as maggot slime, mushrooms, etc. could be used to create potions. Each item could have a different effect (or effects).
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Re: Alchemy and Potions

Post by yosuhara » Wed May 03, 2006 5:37 pm

Dr Wahl wrote:A new dynamic could be added to the game by adding the ability to create potions. One of the skills could be alchemy, which would govern your potion creating skills. The higher alchemy level you have, the more powerful potions. Things such as maggot slime, mushrooms, etc. could be used to create potions. Each item could have a different effect (or effects).
i think this is already planned...
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Post by Crush » Wed May 03, 2006 5:52 pm

When there is anything planned there should be an article about it on the wiki. But i can't find anything, so you should be free to get creative.
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Post by yosuhara » Wed May 03, 2006 7:34 pm

Crush wrote:When there is anything planned there should be an article about it on the wiki. But i can't find anything, so you should be free to get creative.
ok, my fault
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Post by Ultim » Wed May 03, 2006 7:40 pm

On the surface, that is a really fun-sounding idea. Has anyone played Secret of Evermore, though? Annoyance does not begin to cover having to keep stocked up on twenty different elements just so you can use a spell a few times. Not to mention the steep learning curve, where before a player can even cast his first spell he must memorize the combination of elements for that spell. If anyone else has played Secret of Evermore, back me up or refute me here.
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Post by Dr Wahl » Thu May 04, 2006 12:09 am

i cannot say that i have played Secret Of Evermore, but i am currently making my way through Elders Scrolls IV: Oblivion, and they have seemed to do a great job implementing alchemy. the idea is that every item has up to four possible effects (the higher lvl, the more effects), and that you need to take any four items, mix them together, and see what happens. sometimes its a good potion, sometimes its just something to trade...
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Post by Ultim » Thu May 04, 2006 3:19 am

Haha so i've played a game you've never played where it wasn't good, and you've played a game i've never played where it was good. Anyone else?
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Post by knivey » Thu May 04, 2006 6:47 am

Ultim wrote:On the surface, that is a really fun-sounding idea. Has anyone played Secret of Evermore, though? Annoyance does not begin to cover having to keep stocked up on twenty different elements just so you can use a spell a few times. Not to mention the steep learning curve, where before a player can even cast his first spell he must memorize the combination of elements for that spell. If anyone else has played Secret of Evermore, back me up or refute me here.
Looks like I'm going to have to play Secret of Evermore just so I can refute you :P
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Post by Rotonen » Thu May 04, 2006 12:39 pm

Put up a suggestion on the wiki and then we'll start to grind it into something excellent (if it already isn't) from that. Just remember that random effects (occasional random failures, status effects, elemental effects, superb quality, horribly failed alchemy that produces something funny?) should be an integral part of manufacturing skills in TMW. Finding the balance between annoying and fun will be really hard. Especially since we have a learning by doing system coming up: you don't want the beginner to fail 99% of the time and then when his skill starts to build up, get into a 100% success ratio. I'd say that the ratio of positive effects versus negative effects on the produced items should be the thing that the skill level of manufacturing skills affects. At least for me this makes sense: you're better -> you produce better quality goods.
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Post by Kineticstorm » Thu May 04, 2006 5:29 pm

I have played Secret of Evermore many times.
The alchemy in that game is different to the alchemy that Dr Wahl suggested. In SoE alchemy was used to cast different "spells" by mixing certain items or "elements" together. What Dr Wahl is saying is that there should be alchemy to create potions and items, not "spells".

I think what you're trying to say Ultim, is that it would be annoying to constantly go around gathering/buying materials for alchemy that you would only use to create a few specific items. You would have to use the trial and error process to find out what combinations make what items, unless there are recipes you could learn from NPC's and keep them stored in a book. I don't know if that was anywhere close to what you were trying to say Ultim, but that's what I got out of it.

I think the TES IV: Oblivion alchemy is good also (I have the game too :) ) but we should come up with our own way of alchemy. Maybe it should be simple to learn but hard to master. I don't know how we will do it but we will come up with a way. :wink:

And I agree with Rotonen. 8)
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Post by Crush » Thu May 04, 2006 5:34 pm

Here are my ideas for alchemy.

Players can combine two or more common items to get a potion. the reciepts are not known, so players have to experiment a bit until they find the cheap and powerful combinations (some more common formulas might be found ingame. npc's or books could tell the players about them).

every combination could have a difficulty rating. when the alchemy skill of the player isn't high enough there is a high chance that he won't be able to make it. the result could be some funny side effect, an explosion hurting the player, a completely useless potion or just nothing at all. this should also happen when the player tries to make a non existent reciept. so he doesn't know if the combination really doesn't exist or if his skill just isn't high enough.

when a player succeded once he should be rewarded with a bunch of alchemy exp. now he knows how to create this particular potion and succeed everytime. the reciept may also be added to a private reciept book for later reference. but the character won't get any more exp. for mixing the same potion again.

why?

first the process of learning how to make a healing potion can give you a lot of knowledge of general alchemy, but producing healing potions over and over again like an assembly line worker shouldn't give you much more knowledge.
and second otherwise it would be possible to level the alchemy skill by producing hundreds of cheap to manufacture but useless items just to throw them away later. this very, very boring way to level crafting skills is usually also the most effective in many LBD games. an error we shouldn't repeat.

the exp gained for reciepts should be balanced that the player can gain the first levels by making common known reciepts of very common items but the higher the alchemy level gets the more is the player forced to experiment on his own with rare items to advance further.

when the skill forgetting proposal described here is implemented, there should be a special addition for alchemy. when losing alchemy exp the player should also lose the knowledge to make some potions so he has a posibility to regain the lost exp.
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Post by Pajarico » Thu May 04, 2006 8:47 pm

the reciept may also be added to a private reciept book for later reference.
...
when the skill forgetting proposal described here is implemented, there should be a special addition for alchemy. when losing alchemy exp the player should also lose the knowledge to make some potions so he has a posibility to regain the lost exp.
Somewhat I see absurd that someones forgets how to do a potion when he has it written in a book. There should be a way to compatibilize both.
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Post by Dr Wahl » Thu May 04, 2006 10:28 pm

What Dr Wahl is saying is that there should be alchemy to create potions and items, not "spells".
not exactly... i am trying to make a broad suggestion, which may or may not include "spells"... but the underlying idea is that mixing ingrediants will make something... be it a spell, a potion, or just a mess :) as for how good a player is at alchemy, TES IV handles it by having a single item do more for a higher level player, for example:

Level Ingredient Effects

5 maggot slime +5 hp, +5 mana
15 maggot slime +5 hp, +5 mana, +5 attack

so that the higher level player will make a more potent potion, plus gets extra beneifts when the higher lvl player makes it. this is just a suggestion, and can be changed to fit the game better, but i think i got the idea across.
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Post by Rotonen » Mon May 08, 2006 4:44 pm

The exact LBD system mechanics aside, I think that alchemy should be color based (since colors are easy to associate with status alignments, effects and/or elements). This way there'd be a certain logic in which combinations produce what. I also don't think that NPC should be able to teach but the simple recipes and all the high level stuff should come via trial and error. Some of the combinations could be really complex and hence challenging and for some people fun to find (this would also encourage to keep the best recipes secrets to have a cutting edge on the alchemy product market). The actual mechanics of the system shouldn't be revealed to the playing community, in my hunble opinion or it would quickly spoil the fun since the http://gamefaqs.com/ like sites would rapidly just copy the development charts into charts for powerplayers, which is an aspect of MMORPG I personally dislike.

But back to the topic of alchemy and how would it actually work on a conceptual level: The color combinations shouldn't be the only defining factor in the reactions, the raw items should come in different grades. Let's take the common slime as an example: The slime could come from a young healthy creature or an old and sick creature. This would naturally affect its properties regarding alchemical reactions. And to add more frustration to the players: some ingredients should be at their best when they're fresh. This suggestion would tweak around with our monster and item systems: there would be different grades of the same monsters and/or their seemingly same looking drops would come in different grades.
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Post by Crush » Mon May 08, 2006 5:21 pm

The actual mechanics of the system shouldn't be revealed to the playing community, in my hunble opinion or it would quickly spoil the fun since the http://gamefaqs.com/ like sites would rapidly just copy the development charts into charts for powerplayers, which is an aspect of MMORPG I personally dislike.
how do you want to keep anything secret in an open source game?

the only way would be to put the reciepts into an external file and not to put this into the server package. but that would mean that anyone who want to open a new server would have to create his own reciept file.
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