The leveling curve.

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Post by Dr Wahl » 10 Aug 2006, 02:01

i totally understand the "practicle" part of leveling, but it always kills me when i know that there is a highest level that the software will limit it at that point.
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Post by Rapier » 10 Aug 2006, 04:03

We're currently working on quite a few concept changes (maybe I shouldn't say changes...refinements, maybe).

One of the things we are looking at is what happens when someone levels. What happens to HP, MP, Skills, etc.

Obviously, a number of things will increase:
Hit/Health Points
Mana Points
Endurance Points
Points to spend on attributes
Points to spend on skills/spells/abilities/etc
Your ability to hit in combat.
Your ability to avoid being hit in combat.
etc

It is all very much a balancing act on how much those things will increase. We are aiming to have things balanced enough so that there will be a definite, measurable increase as level increases without overpowering things.
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Post by Master Ar2ro » 10 Aug 2006, 11:59

A few things from me:

1. Having a max level/skill (hardcoded, for example max lvl 99, no more) is bad, and should be avoided - a player should always have the possibility to gain more skills/levels/whatever, this keeps him playing; there's always soemthing more you can achieve, even if it takes forever to do so...
2. Yes Crush, even if I had to kill that strongest monster a million times, I still want to have that possibility; even if I decide not to do so.
3. The `leveling curve` - I like to see my character getting stronger reasonably fast, though the game becomes boring that way too; I think that the best solution would be that if there is a monster at the same lvl as I am and the winning chance is like 50%, after leveling like 4-5 times, it shouldn't be a problem to kill, the chance should be like 90-95%. But leveling one time shouldn't make too big of a difference (~9% chance of killing the monster).
The difference between the person who has achieved most in game, and the one who has just joined should be significant. Even though it's more real, I wouldn't want to play a game where after playing for a month or two (every day), I could get killed by a just-joined player if I wasn't careful fighting him. Having played for a year, I don't want to even imagine that an absolute newbie could kill me.
But in general, the `leveling curve` should be simply play-tested as much as possible. I would make like 3 versions, flat, `average`, steep, and then have a bunch of players playtest them for a month or so. That would give the best feedback for your question ;)
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Post by Rapier » 10 Aug 2006, 13:26

Master Ar2ro wrote:1. Having a max level/skill (hardcoded, for example max lvl 99, no more) is bad, and should be avoided - a player should always have the possibility to gain more skills/levels/whatever, this keeps him playing; there's always soemthing more you can achieve, even if it takes forever to do so...
2. Yes Crush, even if I had to kill that strongest monster a million times, I still want to have that possibility; even if I decide not to do so.
Possible, but unlikely. The problem is that people, for the most part, don't want to have to kill the strongest monster a million times for a gain. They will be clamoring and screaming for bigger, stronger monsters so that they can gain.

The higher in level you go, the fewer people are at that level. People tend to get tired of a character or skill set and stop playing that character. It takes a lot of effort to get a high level character. So spending a great deal of development time for a small percentage of players is not very cost effective.

Again, its possible that there may be no upper level limit, but its looking unlikely.
Master Ar2ro wrote:3. The `leveling curve` - I like to see my character getting stronger reasonably fast, though the game becomes boring that way too; I think that the best solution would be that if there is a monster at the same lvl as I am and the winning chance is like 50%, after leveling like 4-5 times, it shouldn't be a problem to kill, the chance should be like 90-95%. But leveling one time shouldn't make too big of a difference (~9% chance of killing the monster).
The difference between the person who has achieved most in game, and the one who has just joined should be significant. Even though it's more real, I wouldn't want to play a game where after playing for a month or two (every day), I could get killed by a just-joined player if I wasn't careful fighting him. Having played for a year, I don't want to even imagine that an absolute newbie could kill me.
But in general, the `leveling curve` should be simply play-tested as much as possible. I would make like 3 versions, flat, `average`, steep, and then have a bunch of players playtest them for a month or so. That would give the best feedback for your question ;)
The base premise behind combat is that if you have two identical characters (the same attributes, levels, skills, armour, weapons, etc) they will have a 50% chance to hit each other. The base To Hit Chance is 50% (modified by skills, level, spells, etc).

Rest assured that there will be quite a difference in power from Lvl 100 to Lvl 10. If you've been playing for a year, you won't need to worry about some n00b coming in and whackin ya for grins.
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Post by Maniac » 10 Aug 2006, 16:13

It also depends on what kind of game the mana world will be. Real Roleplaying or Hack and Slay. At least i prefer the role-playing kind of game, that's why i would take the flattering leveling system. But i would also implement something like a Rock, Paper, Scissors system. Something like: The archer kills the sorcerer, the sorcerer kills the knight and the knight kills the archer. Because the knight has to concentrate on his physical skills he will
he will neglect his mental skills. That's why he doesn't have a good magical resistence and so on. Of course there are characters with mixed skills. But even a high level sorcerer should have problems with five low skilled archers or something like that. I think that really big monsters should require a good party. No one should kill the dragon with one hit. there should be disharmonys between skills so that it is very very hard to learn both. And if you learn both you won't be able to be as good as you would be in one of them awhen you concentrate one of them.

Thats my opinion although it is bad English ^^.
Last edited by Maniac on 12 Aug 2006, 19:53, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Seelenfeuer » 11 Aug 2006, 16:51

Just my two cents regarding the leveling curve as the inital topic answered i think. Maybe there are already plans for the curve i dont know about, but as it didnt get clear in this thread...

Why not letting the curve getting flatter? This would mean getting levels easily in the beginning and having to struggle the nearer you are to the maximum level. I think a lot of games do it this way...

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Post by Bjørn » 12 Aug 2006, 14:30

I think it's obvious that the curve will be a flattening curve. The discussion is about how flat it is overal. I'm assuming we're talking about a logatithmic curve like the following (let's say this curve represents the level horizontally and the overal character power vertically):

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How flat the curve actually is depends on where on the curve we put the starting level and where we put the maximum (be it a cap or a practical open ending).

Note that above I mentioned character level would be on the horizontal axis. But another way to achieve a similar effect (increasing the amount of similarly powered players later on in the game) is to make it exponentially harder to level, so that levelups get less frequent. I think we should use a combination of the two curves, with power relating to level logarithmically and the difficulty to level up increasing exponentially.

I agree with Maniac that even at the higher end of character development, the tougher monsters in the game should be barely beatable on your own, and that you'll need to team up in order to defeat a boss or a group of tough monsters. The purpose of beating these monsters should therefore also not be further levelling, but should probably be more for gaining riches, rare items, completing quests or simply for fun (best reason ever, but hardest to achieve).
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Post by Dr Wahl » 23 Aug 2006, 17:52

if it takes too long to level up, it can get VERY frustrating if all you are doing is just killing. in SilkRoad Online, it does take a long time to level up at higher levels, but to keep it interesting, they have "Skill Points" that you get more frequently (roughly 200 SP per level). Then, Skill Points are used to level up your skills/magic. now I'm not saying we should use this same system, but my point is that when there is only one thing to level up, exponentially increasing the time gets frustrating. I realize we will have a learn-by-doing system, and maybe that is the answer. But other things to consider is maybe creating more weapons to use (obviously there will be more later on, but i mean more than planned). This will allow characters to strive for more ways to get "Stronger" without relying solely on gaining XP.
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Post by Rotonen » 23 Aug 2006, 22:43

I think we're planning an item system to be consisted more out of random attributes rather than predefined "unique" and "special" items. Those are annoying since eventually just about everyone will have them. This sort of variance and truely unique items would be a more fresh solution. This will also help with having a smooth transition from skillgrinding into itemhunting (resource hunting for creating the items for those, who do not posses the skills to create goods) as the levelling of skills becomes deadly slow. Whenever mankind has found that their physical form restricts them from doing something, they've eventually come up with a piece of technology to get past that limit.

On the practical side of the implementation, I'd like to see player owned npc shops (a blacksmith shop for example), where the skill of the item creating npc would be defined by the skills of the owner.

Since this is clear thread hijacking, if you feel the need to discuss the item system, please start up a new thread about it. (And if especially you have something to comment upon on my vision, quote me.)
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Exponantially Radical

Post by cblade » 25 Nov 2006, 17:27

I think the leveling curve should be exponantially radical.

For those who may not uderstand what I mean is this...

A Level 2 person is 1.25x as strong as a level 1, and a level 3 person should be 1.25x as strong as a level 2, level 3, 1.25x as strong as level 2.

To better offset this rapid development, all stats shoud start at 5, with maybe racial modifiers depending on race and gender. then for every level you get your 1.5x level + 2 ability points to distribute.

So a level 1 person would get 3 free points,
Level 2 would get 5 points,
Level 3 would get 6 points,
Level 4 would get 8 points,
Level 5 would get 9 points,
Level 6 would get 11 points,
Level 7 would get 12 points,
Level 8 would get 14 points,
Level 9 would get 15 points,
Level 10 would get 17 points,
Level 11 would get 18 points.

Also for every 4 points an ability should cost more points,
01-04: 1 pt,
05-08: 2 pts,
09-12: 3 pts,
13-16: 4 pts,
17-20: 5 pts,
21-24: 6 pts.
25-28: 7 pts,
29-32: 8 pts,
33-36: 9 pts,
37-40: 10pts.
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Post by Platyna » 25 Nov 2006, 17:43

You have not discovered America, Columbus did in 1492.

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Post by Matt » 25 Nov 2006, 18:16

The vikings discovered america! :>
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Post by Platyna » 25 Nov 2006, 18:36

Zuzanna K. Filutowska
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Post by Madcap » 06 Dec 2006, 20:04

To answer Crush's original question, I too favor the flatter curve. But that is only based on the assumption that TMW is indeed a world where the key inhabitants are fairly equal to each other....such as homo sapiens. On the opposite end of the spectrum would be something similar to what you see in "X-Men".

Has aging ever been considered as a variable for character power? If it was was used, a vvvvvveeeerrrrrrrryyyyyyyy ssssssllllllooooooowwwwwww aging rate would be best, but it could add another level of detail and consideration for the players. Then this could segue into a Hall of Heroes....but that's another thread too.
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Post by Crush » 06 Dec 2006, 20:41

What affect should aging have in your opinion? Making the character weaker when he becomes a senior? Maybe even dying of old age one day?

Although it would be realistic I don't think that it is a good idea regarding the gameplay aspect. When you invested much time and work into your character and brought him onto the maximum level you don't want to see him getting weaker and weaker again because he reached the retirement age. That would be quite frustrating.
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