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Cancelled or Suspended Projects => WOD MMO General Discussion => Topic started by: Don Strudel on December 10, 2010, 01:04:21 am

Title: City Discussion
Post by: Don Strudel on December 10, 2010, 01:04:21 am
Post note: click on the thumbnails for a bigger image!

(http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/th_pcgholiday2008pg76.jpg) (http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/pcgholiday2008pg76.jpg)(http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/th_pcgholiday2008pg77.jpg) (http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/pcgholiday2008pg77.jpg)

Quote from: Azeroth Geography Lesson by Rychan
You spend a lot of time in Azeroth, you should know some stuff about the world!
 
First, according to this globe in Booty Bay, Azeroth is a planet with only the two continents that we know and love.
 
(http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/th_booty_bay_globe.jpg) (http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/booty_bay_globe.jpg)
Quote from: Azeroth Geography Lesson by Rychan

Now, lets talk size. How big is Azeroth?
 
The best way to estimate it would be something like this http://outreach.as.utexas.edu/marykay/assignments/eratos1.html (http://outreach.as.utexas.edu/marykay/assignments/eratos1.html)
 
I didn't actually try this method because I have a feeling solar time is the same everywhere in Azeroth. Does the sun set earlier in Tarren Mills than Barrensl? It should, but I doubt it does by any appreciable amount. In fact, according to the globe in Booty Bay, time of day should be pretty much opposite on the two continents
 
Conclusion: the globe is horribly wrong, the planet is massively larger than shown.
 
So how else can we estimate the size of Azeroth? Direct measurement. I can run a tape measurer behind my wolf as I cross a continent!
 
But they don't make tape measurers. So I did this-
Step 1- find a large, scale map of Lorderon. http://www.worldofwar.net/cartography/worldmap/easterncont.php (http://www.worldofwar.net/cartography/worldmap/easterncont.php)  is a good one. I assume everything is properly scaled.
 
Step 2- estimate run speed. To do this we need a fixed distance to measure travel time across. But I couldn't find any track and field stadiums in Azeroth. So instead I used the fact that entities magically poof once you are 100 yards away from them. I carefully found the exact spot where I could back up to and cause an NPC to poof. I assumed it was 100 yards from there to him. I ran and measured the time. 8.75 seconds to cover 100 yards on my wolf. Wolf speed, with carrot, is approximately 11.428 yards per second. Pretty fast.
 
Step 3- run a longer distance so that I can find out how many pixels on that map I am moving per second. Or, equivalently, how large a distance each pixel represents. I ran from the Stead to the Lake in Eastern Plaguelands in about 96 seconds (101, actually, but it wasn't exactly straight and i had to dodge a couple NPCs). So it was 1096 yards from the stead to the lake. that was about 125 pixels on the map. So each pixel is 8.768 yards squared.
 
How many pixels from top to bottom? It's 1808 pixels from Strathmore to Booty Bay (vertical component only). This comes to 9.007 Miles
 
So here is Lorderon next to Manhatten.
 
(http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/th_lorderon_vs_manhatten.jpg) (http://i297.photobucket.com/albums/mm224/Zenoseiya/lorderon_vs_manhatten.jpg)
Quote from: Azeroth Geography Lesson by Rychan

*obviously, all sorts of measurement error could have conspired to make this off by 25% or more.
 
Our next lesson will be on the crazy weather systems of Azeroth. No rain, but huge jungles! Transitions from jungle to desert in 20 feet! Craziness!
Quote from: Rychan
Someone else verified this :

http://tobolds.blogspot.com/2007/01/how-big-is-azeroth.html (http://tobolds.blogspot.com/2007/01/how-big-is-azeroth.html)

and gave me credit for doing it first.

And recently this video has been making the rounds of the Internet:
http://www.viddler.com/explore/rooreynolds/videos/26/ (http://www.viddler.com/explore/rooreynolds/videos/26/)

Which frankly seems to rip off a bit of my original work without citation!
Source: http://ytrilynth.org/board/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=282&start=0 (http://ytrilynth.org/board/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=282&start=0)

Theoretical Size [of Kalimdor], Scale: 1 hex = 100 miles
(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/666/kalimdormapedit.th.png) (http://img33.imageshack.us/i/kalimdormapedit.png/)
 
Actual Size [of Azeroth], Scale: approx. diameter = 21 km
(http://img190.imageshack.us/img190/8341/ravensmartbombsazeroth.th.jpg) (http://img190.imageshack.us/i/ravensmartbombsazeroth.jpg/)

This is precisely the reason why multiple shards/cities is a bad idea; they'd be way too small! We're talking "cities" on the order of 200 acres here. The entire planet of Azeroth is about the size of San Francisco at scale. For reference, Daggerfall randomly generated a continent that scaled to twice the size of Great Britain.

EVE Online doesn't count because it consists almost entirely of EMPTY space. So any attempts to say it's the largest MMOG based on "being in space" fail because those distances only exist as algorithms. However, it IS a game where you can fly spaceships the size of Manhattan. A single titan is easily the size of Azeroth.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2603/3866285507_c6953cd020_t.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/aehric/3866285507/)
Erebus to scale over NYC (http://www.flickr.com/photos/aehric/3866285507/#) by aehric (http://www.flickr.com/people/aehric/), on Flickr
Title: Re: PC Gamer: Imaginary World, Real Science
Post by: Aydoo on December 10, 2010, 01:13:49 am
From the lore aspect Azeroth was an Earthish sized planet, its just that 2/3 the landmass was actually lost during w/e big event caused the first Shattering or w/e its called. The planet is mostly water. Its as if someone took... the Eurasia continent took out a huge chunk and all you had left was Western Europe and Eastern Asia.

As for weather the game doesn't have a proper day/night cycle nor does it have a weather cycle. It all depends on what zone you are in and wasn't designed to emulate planetary rotation.
Title: Re: PC Gamer: Imaginary World, Real Science
Post by: Don Strudel on December 10, 2010, 02:43:59 am
I'm using this to illustrate why multiple cities/shards are a bad idea based on standard MMOG design. Namely because they'd be too small!
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Mir on December 10, 2010, 03:02:49 am
I'm using this to illustrate why multiple cities/shards are a bad idea based on standard MMOG design. Namely because they'd be too small!
Well, cities, yes; considering the resources even a high-budget game will have available, and the tech limits of the players PC/consoles, an MMO developer can basically choose to make one city to realistic scale, or toss out realism in that respect and go for multiple scaled-down cities.

Unless the game world is mostly empty space, like Eve, the game's probably going to need multiple servers/shards/game worlds to keep the player density from becoming over-saturated
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 10, 2010, 04:28:34 am
Eve has plenty of its own quirks when it comes to time and space.  Most of the ships throughout the galaxy have a warp drive that can accelerate from zero to 3AU per second in about 5 seconds.  AU = astronomical unit (the distance from our own planet to our own star), which is about 150 million km or 93 million miles.  3AU/sec is about 1500x the speed of light.  Yet, you can look behind you as you blaze past planets and stars, and you can see the light that you're moving away from at 1499x light speed.

Planets spin, but don't orbit their stars.  Moons don't orbit their planets, either.  Granted, having so many moving parts would make it an enormous ass pain for those of us who maintain large libraries of custom waypoints, deep safe spots, surveillance points, undock/uncloak safes, etc.  Dual-boxing a cov ops frigate and a stealth bomber in enemy territory is hard enough as it is...if every one of the celestial bodies was moving in real time, most peoples' head would explode.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 10, 2010, 04:30:57 am
i would like to see a hybrid system. cities are single shards, forcing all players that live in a city to be in that city together. that would allow for more than just one city, which this game will need. I am pretty sure they are going to try to get the major sourcebook cities from V:TM, though that is just a guess at this point.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 10, 2010, 04:49:03 am
I say single shard, multiple cities.  A lot of games control your progress through the map by populating it with hoardes of level-X monsters.  Enter before the game "wants" you to, but do so with the expectation that you're going to die if you aggro a single one of them.

Lame.

I say that the vast majority of the map should be open to everybody, with no tacky mobs standing around in a circle jerk while they wait for you to kite them.  However, the more restricted areas would require some kind of roleplay/quest/player-controlled-access in order to get to it.  That is, if you want access to the Vatican's library on supernatural creatures, you have to have very high standings with the Church.  If you want uber high tech, pre-market upgrades to your phone (possibly allowing you to track other people in the in-game map), you need to have access to [cell phone carrier]'s infrastructure.  Just spitballing here, but hopefully you get the gist: if access to new and unusual places is directly related to your efforts, it becomes much more than just an arbitrary, unrelated, immersion-breaking side effect.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Alan Drayson on December 10, 2010, 05:34:20 am
Bleh, I hope we don't have an in-game radar... So much for the element of surprise XD
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 10, 2010, 06:57:01 am
Wouldn't it be fun though if in EVE you had to pay attention to orbit?

As for multiple cities/shards etc...

I'd love to throw reason out the window and hope for scaled version of the planet (and its cities)  :clap: but I won't hold my breath. So long as I log on and open a map to see NYC at one end and LA on the other with some sort traversable middle American in between the Gangrel in me should be happy (watch out for Lupines!)...
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Radical21 on December 10, 2010, 12:23:30 pm
This discussion again, I think Cahalith brought it up last time as well as that absurd diagram of the scale of Azeroth, Irrelevant really for two reasons:
Location in a computer game is just a number behind the scenes.
Nowdays you have HDD that are at least 1-2TB significantly more than when WoW was developed, Internet Connection, Processor speed RAM,  all on a much higher scale than it was back then so it makes sense to say that servers are better..

Gaming companys usually make a smaller world in favor of Themepark, it has very little to do with technical limiations.
Content wise as I already mentioned on more than a few threads . there are procedural algorithems to populate landscape or cities etc.
NYC is one of the largest if not the Largest city in the world so using it as a source for comparison is also a bad idea because the average city is smaller by far.

Otherwise I already suggest you do a game based on VtDA/DA:V
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 10, 2010, 05:40:00 pm
i aggree that ingame radar would suck balls.

to the meat of the issue though is not how large a playable area is, it's how big it feels.

Eve feels massive, and it is, but theres not alot of actual stuff inside the world space. SWG/WoW/AO all of these games have good and bad areas, so it really comes down to how the area feels. Plus with out any people, the most beautiful playfields can feel horrible so you have to add in the human element as well.

it's really hard to sit on the client side of things and discuss ingame landmass, like you all have said there are many factors as to what could dictate the actual physical size of a city in the game. I'd like to suggest that we not think about it in how big it should physically be, but how we expect it to feel.

Like i've been to New Orleans, I've read the New Orleans sourcebooks (i am sure many of us have). I know what new orleans should feel like in the WoD. I don't care if it takes me 45 mins to walk from one end of the map to the other, i just want it to FEEL like WoD New Orleans.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 10, 2010, 07:41:58 pm
Unless the game world is mostly empty space, like Eve, the game's probably going to need multiple servers/shards/game worlds to keep the player density from becoming over-saturated
I highly doubt that. One good-sized city would be enough for everyone. I expect we'd only have a few tens of thousands of players at launch, maybe a couple hundred thousand, but those are the kinds of numbers that can easily fit into a single city.

If we have multiple cities, they would be about the size of, say, a couple hundred acres each, or about one city block. Paragon city is an excellent example:
(http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/2556/grandparagoncityfa6.jpg)

A real city is about this size:
(http://dyami.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/new-york-city.jpg)

As you can see, a realistically-scaled city is many hundreds of thousands of times larger than a standard MMOG-scaled city. Hence, we need not worry about oversaturation. Which is only a problem with hardcore PnP fans anyway, and doesn't matter in an MMOG environment. The MMOG does not need to be based on a real city either, and wouldn't resemble one even if it was.

Building multiple cities would be a disservice to the customers.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Mir on December 10, 2010, 09:59:48 pm
Unless the game world is mostly empty space, like Eve, the game's probably going to need multiple servers/shards/game worlds to keep the player density from becoming over-saturated
I highly doubt that. One good-sized city would be enough for everyone. I expect we'd only have a few tens of thousands of players at launch, maybe a couple hundred thousand, but those are the kinds of numbers that can easily fit into a single city.
The problem is that, as far as we know, the players are, by and large, going to be Vampires (and as the game expands post-launch, probably other supernaturals).  A hundred thousand Vampires in a single city is a bit excessive.  Multiple large cities could work (if they actually have the resources to create a game world that big), or having a one-city world with multiple servers, with the more typical server population of 2-5K, could also keep the mortal-to-supernatural ratio looking right.  I personally think the multi-server option is more feasible.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 11, 2010, 12:34:44 am

Building multiple cities would be a disservice to the customers.

Wha???
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 11, 2010, 01:21:40 am
The problem is that, as far as we know, the players are, by and large, going to be Vampires (and as the game expands post-launch, probably other supernaturals).  A hundred thousand Vampires in a single city is a bit excessive.  Multiple large cities could work (if they actually have the resources to create a game world that big), or having a one-city world with multiple servers, with the more typical server population of 2-5K, could also keep the mortal-to-supernatural ratio looking right.  I personally think the multi-server option is more feasible.
Again, an MMOG has different needs than a tabletop game. You are the only people who would care that there are too many vampires. It is a non-issue.

If we followed your hardcore view, we'd have hundreds of cities 200 acres in size each, and no one would care what happens on other servers. The point of having a single city is that it allows for events to affect everyone. For example, EVE Online is the only MMOG that has its own newsfeed.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Link6746 on December 11, 2010, 01:31:56 am
I think personally that multiple cities is a good idea, but on launch there should only be one city- Each city should have wilderness between them (the first having wilderness Around it at launch), and be added (along with more wilderness space) with each expansion (which due to CCP's normal procedure you'd expect to be free and part of an update)

This would allow the benefits of both single-city and multi-city options at once in the later stages, and allow the launch-included city to be as large as a real one (potentially a megacity like L.A. and suburbs, or N.Y. given the estimated release date)
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 11, 2010, 02:00:37 am
This would allow the benefits of both single-city and multi-city options at once in the later stages, and allow the launch-included city to be as large as a real one (potentially a megacity like L.A. and suburbs, or N.Y. given the estimated release date)
What is the point of having multiple cities? What does it add to the game?

A single city can have all the same stuff that multiple cities can have. Multiple princes? Rewrite the setting to accommodate them in one city. Complex politics? We already have several thousand estimated players; politics will flow naturally out of that.

There is no point to having multiple cities. It would take away development from more important things.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Mir on December 11, 2010, 02:13:46 am
The problem is that, as far as we know, the players are, by and large, going to be Vampires (and as the game expands post-launch, probably other supernaturals).  A hundred thousand Vampires in a single city is a bit excessive.  Multiple large cities could work (if they actually have the resources to create a game world that big), or having a one-city world with multiple servers, with the more typical server population of 2-5K, could also keep the mortal-to-supernatural ratio looking right.  I personally think the multi-server option is more feasible.
Again, an MMOG has different needs than a tabletop game. You are the only people who would care that there are too many vampires. It is a non-issue.

If we followed your hardcore view, we'd have hundreds of cities 200 acres in size each, and no one would care what happens on other servers. The point of having a single city is that it allows for events to affect everyone. For example, EVE Online is the only MMOG that has its own newsfeed.
Well, no; if we followed my view, we'd have one city of realistic scale, but have twenty or thirty servers. 

And come now, wanting multiple servers with a population cap of 5K or so is hardly hardcore.  Hardcore is wanting to have a single server, but wanting each individual city on that server to harbor a population of no more than 50 Vampires (a oppinion held by at least a couple people on these boards).

It's true, the MMO will change things of the setting to make it fit better in an MMO; this is inevitable, and proper.  That being said, there should be effort made to try and keep the general feel of the setting, even when the specifics are being altered.  Trying to maintain that whole "one Vampire to every 100,000 mortals" thing would be ridiculous, but a degree of rarity is appropriate to the setting; if we're running into gangs of Vampires on every street corner, something has gone wrong in the game design.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on December 11, 2010, 04:11:24 am
I prefer one huge, detailled city myself, because you can only have so much hand-generated content.

You CAN fill in with random content like in EVE, but what works in space is ugly in RPG games.

So my preference is: make a really big city, make it really good, do not use separate servers, but instead: just instance everything. The difference is that you can then move freely between instances, giving you the possibility to always be with your friends, and of a single economy and set of political events.

The drawback is that it harms continuity and makes it easy for players to "hide", but hey. Im OK with that. Its a MUCH better idea than "sharding". Probably instanced and coded, this system would allow for limitless growth, AND would also have the advantage of limitless shrinkage if the game is not played as much as expected. To need to merge things; it'd all be done on the fly.

Its the only solution for "one game space" I can think of aside from randomly generating every area... and I dont like that. I suppose "Guild Wars" is a reasonable example of an online game with an instancing model like I suggest.

Im also in favor of wilderness areas, obviously. Now thats something that can be randomly generated a bit more effectively than a city space...
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 11, 2010, 04:50:51 am
On the one hand, a realistic population ratio would mean that you could wander the streets for months without running into other Kindred.  Great for atmosphere, but bad for story...unless you have an ST to tie everything together.

On the other hand, a single shard would mean that a disproportionate number of pedestrians are Kindred.  However, single-shard persistent worlds tend to balance out their own population densities over time.  In Eve there are some 5000 settled solar systems, and another few thousand wormhole (sporadically accessible) systems.  People clump together around trade hubs, in-game events and border regions (like hi/lo borders and lo/null borders).  In Jita there are often 1200 people logged in, and upwards to 100 of them are clustered around the undock point outside of 4-4.  Another 300 are inside.  At the same time, there are many hundreds of 0.0 systems that are empty.  You could park a heavy interdictor on a gate all day and not see a single person.  I want WoD to be the same way...like in real life, population centers can be built based on geography (New Orleans), border regions (Denver) or due to some political necessity (Salt Lake City).
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 11, 2010, 04:57:28 am
Instancing doesn't work for PVP-oriented games. It's designed to allow people to run through dungeons without competing with other players. The whole point of World of Darkness is competition with other factions for wealth and power and territory, and not simply through combat, but through political and economic manipulation.

You cannot simply instance player housing; players should be able to carve out their own fiefdoms and hunting grounds where others should not trespass. It offers a more tantalizing reward to the player.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 11, 2010, 05:04:17 am
You cannot simply instance player housing; players should be able to carve out their own fiefdoms and hunting grounds where others should not trespass. It offers a more tantalizing reward to the player.
Good point.  Reminds me of mining in Eve.  But you know...it's alliances using lethal force to defend their Ice Fields, rather than a Cainite and his ghouls using lethal force to preserve their Herd.  Same principle, though.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on December 11, 2010, 05:32:13 am
Instancing doesn't work for PVP-oriented games. It's designed to allow people to run through dungeons without competing with other players. The whole point of World of Darkness is competition with other factions for wealth and power and territory, and not simply through combat, but through political and economic manipulation.

You cannot simply instance player housing; players should be able to carve out their own fiefdoms and hunting grounds where others should not trespass. It offers a more tantalizing reward to the player.

Thats an acceptable argument, except I don't want WOD to be PVP-oriented 'THAT WAY'. At all.

Not only do I want instanced player housing, but I want social and physical PVP to occur mostly within mutual consent framework. Thats the best recipe for long-term success. Allow players to win and lose some things through fighting each other, but make fighting each other easy to avoid so that people who don't like that aspect of the game do not have to engage in it. Fairly different from canon PNP? Yes. A winning MMO strategy? YES. Most fun to play in the long run? HELL YEAH!
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 11, 2010, 05:53:36 am
Sounds like the people in NPC corps, living in hi-sec and ensuring 5km+ separation from everybody else's cans at all times.  CONCORD is your friend.







Or they'll kill you on sight, with with no chance to tank or cloak.  Your best bet is to run away, screaming your last will and testament to whichever corpies are on TeamSpeak at the time.

You mileage may vary.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on December 11, 2010, 08:09:08 am
Unfortunately I dont understand EVEspeak  :p
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 11, 2010, 09:32:21 am
This would allow the benefits of both single-city and multi-city options at once in the later stages, and allow the launch-included city to be as large as a real one (potentially a megacity like L.A. and suburbs, or N.Y. given the estimated release date)
What is the point of having multiple cities? What does it add to the game?

A single city can have all the same stuff that multiple cities can have. Multiple princes? Rewrite the setting to accommodate them in one city. Complex politics? We already have several thousand estimated players; politics will flow naturally out of that.

There is no point to having multiple cities. It would take away development from more important things.

more important things? the MOST important thing in the World of Darkness was the city you played in. princes, primogen, entire sects came and went, but the cities were where you fought and died, they were where the story was, they were characters unto themselves.

Eve is one server, yes, but it still has different regions, different security ratings. I am fairly cretin that CCP can add multiple cities. I KNOW white wolf will push for them as they are HUGE places of storyline, development, NPCs of all types. Until we see design document leaks or a dev blog, i'd bet on seeing multiple cities.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 11, 2010, 09:39:03 am
Instancing doesn't work for PVP-oriented games. It's designed to allow people to run through dungeons without competing with other players. The whole point of World of Darkness is competition with other factions for wealth and power and territory, and not simply through combat, but through political and economic manipulation.

You cannot simply instance player housing; players should be able to carve out their own fiefdoms and hunting grounds where others should not trespass. It offers a more tantalizing reward to the player.

that doesn't work for mmo's real people have real lives in the real world. they can't stay logged on to protect their lands, like a vampire living in the WoD world would be able to.. now if we can hire guards, or make ghouls or create our own armies of whatever to guard our properties then what the hell. as long as we have the tools to protect said assets then i would be cool with it.

I don't think that having instanced content would be bad, but i don't think that all content should be instanced. there needs to be some danger and such.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 11, 2010, 09:41:58 am
What is the point of having multiple cities? What does it add to the game?

A single city can have all the same stuff that multiple cities can have. Multiple princes? Rewrite the setting to accommodate them in one city. Complex politics? We already have several thousand estimated players; politics will flow naturally out of that.

There is no point to having multiple cities. It would take away development from more important things.
Whats the point of having a single city? What does it add to the game?
Multiple cities can have all the same stuff as a single city...only multiplied  :razz:
No point to having one city, it would detract from the World of Darkness.

They could even be going the route of having a starter city depending on which sect you belong to and have other cities where the sects are trying to take control. I guess we'll all be left to speculate for some time but to add to my point above - its not called City of Darkness...
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Ashtone on December 11, 2010, 07:00:26 pm
I would like to see one well detailed city to start with. it could have multiple different areas done in rings, like eve, with low risk areas with more security in and around the centre, going in to no mans land around the outskirts and edge of the city. that way i think the low or no security areas, like in eve, will be fairly empty, especially if there is a severe death penalty. if its a big enough city, it wont seem overpopulated to start with, ccp could release another city maybe 6 months to a year after launch or as the games population grows.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 11, 2010, 08:51:07 pm
They could even be going the route of having a starter city depending on which sect you belong to and have other cities where the sects are trying to take control. I guess we'll all be left to speculate for some time but to add to my point above - its not called City of Darkness...

Exactly.  I don't expect there to be only 1 vampire per 100,000 mortals, like in PnP... but I don't want everyone I meet on the street to be a vampire, either.  To keep the flavor of the World of Darkness, there have to be multiple cities, and mortals have to outnumber vampires, even if it's only a 10-1 ratio.  The whole point of the Masquerade is "Humans outnumber us; we must keep our existence secret."

It is also important for individual vampires to be able to make a difference in their city, if they are successful enough.  If there's only one city and 10,000 vampires are vying for control of the city's police department, who has control?  An alliance of 500 vampires cannot become Prince of Mega-City, or even just the city's Primogen.  People have stated numerous times in this forum that they don't want the WODMMO to be "WOW with fangs."  Well, I'll come right out and say that I don't want it to be "EVE Online with Fangs", either.  When I ask who the Prince of the city is, I don't want the answer to be, "Oh, the Fangula Conglomerate runs this city."

The reason that the "(Insert city name) by Night" books were so popular is that each city had its own flavor.  If CCP wants to start with one city, that's okay; but there have to be more than one as the game progresses.  Nobody expects each city to be the size of New York City or Los Angeles; they can feel big, without being true scale.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Nanaloma on December 11, 2010, 10:10:42 pm
They could even be going the route of having a starter city depending on which sect you belong to and have other cities where the sects are trying to take control. I guess we'll all be left to speculate for some time but to add to my point above - its not called City of Darkness...

Exactly.  I don't expect there to be only 1 vampire per 100,000 mortals, like in PnP... but I don't want everyone I meet on the street to be a vampire, either.  To keep the flavor of the World of Darkness, there have to be multiple cities, and mortals have to outnumber vampires, even if it's only a 10-1 ratio.  The whole point of the Masquerade is "Humans outnumber us; we must keep our existence secret."

It is also important for individual vampires to be able to make a difference in their city, if they are successful enough.  If there's only one city and 10,000 vampires are vying for control of the city's police department, who has control?  An alliance of 500 vampires cannot become Prince of Mega-City, or even just the city's Primogen.  People have stated numerous times in this forum that they don't want the WODMMO to be "WOW with fangs."  Well, I'll come right out and say that I don't want it to be "EVE Online with Fangs", either.  When I ask who the Prince of the city is, I don't want the answer to be, "Oh, the Fangula Conglomerate runs this city."

The reason that the "(Insert city name) by Night" books were so popular is that each city had its own flavor.  If CCP wants to start with one city, that's okay; but there have to be more than one as the game progresses.  Nobody expects each city to be the size of New York City or Los Angeles; they can feel big, without being true scale.

Ditto that!  (that translates to I agree, bravo!, whatever - shouldn't use pilot speak I suppose). 
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 12, 2010, 12:46:37 am
They won't be big at all. I expect each city would be one block tops.

All the twelve million players in WoW could live comfortably in one proper-sized city. Multiple cities also brings up a problem: why should anyone care what happens outside their own city? Furthermore, depending on the ease of travel, the feeling would not be multiples cities, but one city with different districts.

The distinction between one big city and numerous tiny cities is purely artificial. Mechanically they'd work exactly the same if travel between different cities was possible. Sure, they'd LOOK like different cities because they have fake-looking "forests" haphazardly tacked on between them, but they would essentially function as one unified fiefdom. Having one good-sized city with different districts spread between different factions would FEEL far less tacky that having hundreds of tiny villages split between different factions.

All you're arguing for is a different aesthetic, one that I find to be disagreeable. Why is having multiple cities so important? In practice they'd still be treated as one entity if there was travel between them. Power blocs would emerge and take control of them, and for all intents and purposes they would function like one city with a few D&D monster-infested parks and annoyingly gridlocked streets.

In Bloodlines, for instance, travel between different districts was a short taxi ride. The difference between multiple cities in the MMOG would essentially boil down to that. If travel is an easy taxi ride, then multiple cities would function as different districts of one city. If travel is a difficult and dangerous walk through D&D monster-infested forests, then most people wouldn't bother to travel, which would defeat the purpose of having a unified shard.

There are no benefits multiple cities have over multiple districts of one city, and they would function exactly the same in practice. Justify it to yourselves all you want, but these "cities" will end up just being a long string of pretentious city districts with delusions of being in different cities. "Oh look, the New Orleans district! And right next to it, the New York township! And just down the street, the Los Angeles Quarter! One taxi ride away, Amsterdam!"
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 12, 2010, 01:47:56 am
Based on that, why do you only want one city if theres no difference?

Why would each in-game city only be one city block?

I'm sure all the players in WoW could live in one mega city...

Wheres your source on " have flocking "forests" haphazardly tacked on between them" maybe they'll have convincing looking forests placed gently between.

Why should I care what goes on in a district across town when I'm competing with 10k players to hold my own city corner anymore than you would care about what happens in different cities?

Would travel be easy between cities as in Bloodlines? Who knows, probably not if there is a day cycle and vamps had to stay underground( I'm sure they wouldn't force PCs to sleep). so that would make travel difficult, right? Not to mention the fare on a cab from NYC to LA.

The Gangrel would get restless in one city.


 All you're arguing for is a different aesthetic.

And multiple cities for me at least would feel more like a real world than one city that I can't leave. Maybe if they go for an Escape for New York theme.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 12, 2010, 02:16:38 am
Based on that, why do you only want one city if theres no difference?
Because it makes more sense to have one city with districts versus numerous tiny villages with easy travel. It's a matter of scale and perspective.

Why would each in-game city only be one city block?
Have you seen the "cities" they have in MMOGs these days? They're about the size of one city block each. Smaller, even.

Wheres your source on " have flocking "forests" haphazardly tacked on between them" maybe they'll have convincing looking forests placed gently between.
Not my idea. I keep hearing people on these forums throwing out ideas about forests for werewolves to live in. I don't think the idea is particularly interesting.

Why should I care what goes on in a district across town when I'm competing with 10k players to hold my own city corner anymore than you would care about what happens in different cities?
Then you admit my ideas are sensible? You could be affected economically. Prices might change because of scarcity or price fixers in another village.

Would travel be easy between cities as in Bloodlines? Who knows, probably not if there is a day cycle and vamps had to stay underground( I'm sure they wouldn't force PCs to sleep). so that would make travel difficult, right? Not to mention the fare on a cab from NYC to LA.
You're making a lot of assumptions about how the game will work. Limiting vampires in day/night cycles is a recipe for disaster, because it WILL be exploited, and simply isn't fun to play. What if people who want to play together get stuck in different cities? Difficult travel is an all around bad idea as well.

The Gangrel would get restless in one city.
Who cares? That's a stupid argument. I'm trying to argue on the basis of some semblance real-world logic here.

All you're arguing for is a different aesthetic.
One that's more sensible. Many tiny villages will just feel like one city with multiple districts. So why not just make it one city with multiple districts? Have you ever visited Chinatown or Little Italy? One city can be quite cosmopolitan. You have a poor sense of scale with regard to these things.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Aydoo on December 12, 2010, 02:28:02 am
Screw this easy travel shit. Put cars in the game for those who have Drive skill, make tons of open highway space between the cities and make people actually TRAVEL there. The World of Darkness is more than just cities. Its forests, jungles, ruins, towns, highways, abandoned buildings, and anything you can imagine from the real world. I say include it ALL.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 12, 2010, 02:46:07 am
Screw this easy travel shit. Put cars in the game for those who have Drive skill, make tons of open highway space between the cities and make people actually TRAVEL there. The World of Darkness is more than just cities. Its forests, jungles, ruins, towns, highways, abandoned buildings, and anything you can imagine from the real world. I say include it ALL.
See, that's not exactly something that will attract people.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Mir on December 12, 2010, 03:23:02 am
Screw this easy travel shit. Put cars in the game for those who have Drive skill, make tons of open highway space between the cities and make people actually TRAVEL there. The World of Darkness is more than just cities. Its forests, jungles, ruins, towns, highways, abandoned buildings, and anything you can imagine from the real world. I say include it ALL.
Include the entire world?  Okay; of course, it'll take them another twenty years to build it, and we'll all have to take turns using the computers at NASA to play it, but I suppose it could be done  :smile:

As for the day/night cycle comment a few posts back, I can't see the game launching with day present, not when everybody's playing a Vampire.  Essentially telling your entire playerbase "go away" every twelve in-game hours seems like a self-destructive business plan.  Maybe when the game has a few expansions under its belt, and at least part of the playerbase could experience daylight, maybe then I could see them adding day in some form.  Although, it would make more sense to me to implement day and night as zones, rather than the more traditional day/night cycle (to avoid the aforementioned "go away" scenario).
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Aydoo on December 12, 2010, 04:26:44 am
Screw this easy travel shit. Put cars in the game for those who have Drive skill, make tons of open highway space between the cities and make people actually TRAVEL there. The World of Darkness is more than just cities. Its forests, jungles, ruins, towns, highways, abandoned buildings, and anything you can imagine from the real world. I say include it ALL.
See, that's not exactly something that will attract people.

CCP's Eve is a Niche game.
White Wolf's WoD is a  Niche game.
Niche to the power of Niche multiplied by Infinity.
The main group of players who will be attracted to CCP's WoD will be:

1.) CCP fans.
2.) White Wolf fans.
3.) Vampire Fans.
4.) People who stumble upon the game through word of mouth, advertising, or happenstance. (EG: everyone else)

Over half the crap everyone keeps suggesting is sure to drive most of the #4 group of people far from the game. So why the hell not. SUPER SPECIAL REVOLUTIONARY DIFFERENT doesn't attract people. People like mediocrity and more of the SAME. Look at console games. Look at what games are UBERSUPER POPULAR (and stays there), and what flames up and dies just as fast.

@Mir

Not the entire world. Having a cab from city to city is retarded. If you say have 10 city hubs, then there need to be twice as much space between the cities.

People say oh "New Orleans" would be a fun city to do a chron in. Do you know how small New Orleans is? Its literally like.. 20 square blocks. What most people call "New Orleans" is the main Central Buisness District, plus all the suburbs (Kenner, Metarie, Gretna, etc) which is why usually its called "the Greater New Orleans Area." Most large cities are like this. The GNOA is situated on a lake to the north, with several causways passing outwards in three directions. On the south side  and west side its mostly surrounded by swampland. To the east a river runs through the "city" and further east is more water and swamp.

From Houma (which is south of GNOA) is about 45mins by highway. Theres quite a few towns on the way lots of open land (old farm land, cattle land, swamp/bog land, forested areas.) If you cut out everything in the 45 min drive from one area to the next, then you are doing a diservice to your game. You lose alot of the flavor of what makes WoD and Vampire especially unique.

If all the characters are trapped in a brick, mortor, and iron prison you might as well just have all the characters sitting in boxes with doors connecting each other and let them fight over what box belongs to who. The city is a base and a starting part, its the rest of the world the makes it interesting.

On another note in this "space between" you don't need to do the EQ, WoW, FFXI thing of populating it with monsters. More to the fact make the world pretty barren. Add some humans here and there realistically, at rest stops and perhaps lonely diners. Add cops patrolling the roads and a few pitstops on the longer hauls. Have some places for if the sun comes up for kindred to bunk up or they would otherwise fry in the sun. Then further in the hidden places you could have say a sabbat pack's haven with some ghouled dogs or what not. Theres alot you can do without resorting to just throwing tons of monsters all over to act as fodder and travel prevention.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 12, 2010, 06:08:27 am
Screw this easy travel shit. Put cars in the game for those who have Drive skill, make tons of open highway space between the cities and make people actually TRAVEL there. The World of Darkness is more than just cities. Its forests, jungles, ruins, towns, highways, abandoned buildings, and anything you can imagine from the real world. I say include it ALL.

WoDo Meets APB. you have my vote! ;)
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 12, 2010, 06:12:20 am
Screw this easy travel shit. Put cars in the game for those who have Drive skill, make tons of open highway space between the cities and make people actually TRAVEL there. The World of Darkness is more than just cities. Its forests, jungles, ruins, towns, highways, abandoned buildings, and anything you can imagine from the real world. I say include it ALL.
Include the entire world?  Okay; of course, it'll take them another twenty years to build it, and we'll all have to take turns using the computers at NASA to play it, but I suppose it could be done  :smile:

As for the day/night cycle comment a few posts back, I can't see the game launching with day present, not when everybody's playing a Vampire.  Essentially telling your entire playerbase "go away" every twelve in-game hours seems like a self-destructive business plan.  Maybe when the game has a few expansions under its belt, and at least part of the playerbase could experience daylight, maybe then I could see them adding day in some form.  Although, it would make more sense to me to implement day and night as zones, rather than the more traditional day/night cycle (to avoid the aforementioned "go away" scenario).

i was thinking out of a 24 hr cycle, 8 hrs be "daytime" 16 be night. and heres why. daylight is a vampire's weakness.. take out daylight? might as well take out something like silver for werewolves. you have to have some time in game where daylight is happening. vampires can still travel out of the light, but are either limited by some thing or whatever, so they can escape if need be.

i think the day and night cycles shouldn't be exact, or that they should be offset. so that the day / night cycle isn't allways the same.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 12, 2010, 08:04:02 am
They won't be big at all. I expect each city would be one block tops.

All the twelve million players in WoW could live comfortably in one proper-sized city. Multiple cities also brings up a problem: why should anyone care what happens outside their own city? Furthermore, depending on the ease of travel, the feeling would not be multiples cities, but one city with different districts.

One block cities?  We're not talking some little village you stumble across in a fantasy-based game, with one smithy that doubles as a general store, and one witch selling potions.  You are exaggerating a bit.  Modern servers have the capacity for a little more than that.

As for why should anyone care what happens outside their city... exactly.  In the WOD, vampires rarely travel from city to city, because it's too dangerous.  They don't care about what happens in some other city, because their current city is the one with all of their ghouls, contacts, allies, resources, etc.  The point of the whole thing is that vampires are predators, and they feel crowded if too many other predators are in the same city.  VtM and VtR are not about giant vampire corporations banding together to make their presence felt; it's about personal interactions, between individuals or relatively small groups.  City politics rarely revolve around clashes between the big sects, such as the Camarilla and Sabbat.

To do away with smaller group dynamics in favor of corporate structures would be to make the game basically 'EVE Online with fangs', which I do not want to see.  It sounds like that's exactly what you do want to see, which means we disagree on what game we'd like to play.  It's that simple.

The distinction between one big city and numerous tiny cities is purely artificial. Mechanically they'd work exactly the same if travel between different cities was possible. Sure, they'd LOOK like different cities because they have fake-looking "forests" haphazardly tacked on between them, but they would essentially function as one unified fiefdom. Having one good-sized city with different districts spread between different factions would FEEL far less tacky that having hundreds of tiny villages split between different factions.

All you're arguing for is a different aesthetic, one that I find to be disagreeable. Why is having multiple cities so important? In practice they'd still be treated as one entity if there was travel between them. Power blocs would emerge and take control of them, and for all intents and purposes they would function like one city with a few D&D monster-infested parks and annoyingly gridlocked streets.

In Bloodlines, for instance, travel between different districts was a short taxi ride. The difference between multiple cities in the MMOG would essentially boil down to that. If travel is an easy taxi ride, then multiple cities would function as different districts of one city. If travel is a difficult and dangerous walk through D&D monster-infested forests, then most people wouldn't bother to travel, which would defeat the purpose of having a unified shard.

There are no benefits multiple cities have over multiple districts of one city, and they would function exactly the same in practice. Justify it to yourselves all you want, but these "cities" will end up just being a long string of pretentious city districts with delusions of being in different cities. "Oh look, the New Orleans district! And right next to it, the New York township! And just down the street, the Los Angeles Quarter! One taxi ride away, Amsterdam!"

I believe your main point is where you say that you find the aesthetic (of different cities) 'disagreeable'.  This is a matter of personal taste on your part, which is fine, but you try to rationalize it by calling the opposing viewpoints 'illogical'.  Let's talk logic then.  Your basic assumption about cities seems to be that travel for vampires would be as easy as for humans (which is getting harder all the time, but we won't even talk about the TSA).  You compared travel between 'cities' to the travel between the different maps in Bloodlines -- Bloodlines is not an example of different cities, but of different districts in the same city.  Basically, these are all the Los Angeles Metro area, with no wilderness in between, and easily available by cab.  The only so-called 'wilderness' is in Griffith Park, which is just that -- a park.

Personally, I liked the fact that the different areas in Bloodlines had their own individual look and feel.  I didn't feel that the city districts were in any way 'pretentious'.  But I had no illusions that these were different cities.

The truth is that if CCP is going to use the White Wolf model for vampiric society, then travel between cities will be difficult and dangerous -- and rightly so.  Either there are werewolves in the wilderness, waiting to kill all vampire travelers; or if werewolves are not as big a threat, then all of the lawless vampires who enjoy killing their own kind will live out there on the fringes, and prey on their more 'civilized' kindred when they travel between cities.  Air travel avoids this, but is even more problematic -- even with night flights, there are TSA scans, ID checks, biometric databases... all of which make this method difficult for Kindred.  The White Wolf model for vampires is solitary predators thrown into a group setting, isolated by circumstances in the cities, and forced to develop elaborate rules of conduct among their kind -- both to avoid constant warfare, and to keep the mortals ignorant of their existence.

Group dynamics among vampires is never on a large-scale, corporate model, involving thousands of vampires and factions numbering in the hundreds.  Oh, you had the Camarilla and Sabbat, but these were not governments.  Aside from the Traditions, Camarilla law in one city might be different in another city, depending on the local Prince or Primogen.  Camarilla cities were more like the city-states of ancient Greece -- they consider themselves allied, but they are powers in their own right, and pretty much self-governing.  In a like manner, Sabbat packs do what they want, and only seldom are they involved in anything on a larger scale.

If CCP intends to preserve any of this aspect of the VtM or VtR games then they will have to have different cities, where there are no more than a few hundred Kindred; instead of one uber-mega-city, where the actions of one vampire don't matter, and each player knows only a tiny fraction of their city's Kindred.

I don't see that this would be that hard to do.  As people have pointed out, distance in an MMO is purely artificial.  Chop that big city into smaller areas, with smaller sub-areas as city districts (and no, they wouldn't just be two blocks in size... servers are a little more advanced than that now).  The difference between this and the uber-city model would be that travel between actual cities is difficult and dangerous, not just a simple cab ride like between city districts.  As Kian pointed out earlier in this thread, the setting is the World of Darkness, not the City of Darkness.  It should feel like a real world, even if the horizons are a lot closer than they seem.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Aydoo on December 12, 2010, 03:34:10 pm
To be fair Santa Monica is a "different city" but thats just semanitcs like my New Orleans example and its generally included with the main larger hub.

Also I totally agree with the 16/8 Night/Day cycle. That seems to fit the whole tone of the WoD games while giving more leeway to the kindred and is less restricting.

More about travel:
So I regularly travel from Houma (Southern Louisiana) to Shreveport (Northern Louisiana.) Its a 4.5hr drive, even if we don't make but one stop for gas. We pass through a few towns, and cities along the way but there is one thing that stands out to me every trip. Just before Lafayette there is a rest stop. At night this place is wonderful to check out. Its an open parkish area with a body of water to its back. The byway leads off the highway into a long parking lot. The main building has restrooms, a map, and a few vending machines. Usually there is a night guard there as well. Behind the main building is some small storage buildings with roll down doors most likely used for their lawn care tools. The park area is situated with quite a few benches and park "grills." There is always 4-5 big rigs parked around the lot as well. Its perfect for a haven or safe house of a kindred. There would always be an influx of humans that are traveling, especially at night, travelers would mostly go unnoticed if they had to "disappear."  The large body of water and surrounding forested/swamp area provides pleanty of place to hide things that need hiding.

This is the kind of thing I'd like to see outside of their towns. It adds alot of abience and wonder to the world. While yes alot of the politicing and happening are in the major hubs there are LOTS of kindred who dislike being tied down and constantly travel. Sabbat packs aren't the only ones who wander, as there are alot of other Nomadic kindred. While their social power base in anyone area won't be anything to brag about, the riggors of travel will usually make them due to neccesity into a tough son of a bitch.

I mean look at Jack and Beckett. Both these characters were of that type.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 12, 2010, 06:01:35 pm
 :deadhorse:



What Aydoo and PGM1961 said :vampsmile:

And Don, no I don't agree that you ideas are sensible.

You see to have made allot of assumptions about how the game will work, and how small their cities will be.

The Gangrel would get restless in one city.
Who cares? That's a stupid argument. I'm trying to argue on the basis of some semblance real-world logic here.

Your counter point here was well thought out, equalled only by how well you said it.  :vampwink:

No real point to debating when you come back with gems like that.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 12, 2010, 07:19:50 pm
Also I totally agree with the 16/8 Night/Day cycle. That seems to fit the whole tone of the WoD games while giving more leeway to the kindred and is less restricting.

Meant to comment on this in my last post, but forgot.   :smile:

For realism's sake, I would love to see a day/night cycle of some kind in the MMO.  But just like Final Death, I doubt Daytime will make it to the MMO, because it would keep too many people from playing, depending on the ratio of day/night, and their time zone.  With my luck, I'd probably be one of them.

With a regular 9-5 type of job, most people would only be able to play for a few hours in the evenings, and maybe earlier on the weekends.  Even with the 16/8 cycle you mentioned, these people might only be able to play their vampire about 4 times a week, perhaps less if they're busy on the weekend, or their time zone just doesn't sync up with the night cycle in the game.  This would just be too frustrating.  Yeah, maybe you'd be able to play a ghoul during the daytime, but for many people that isn't what they want to do.

I just don't see CCP including a day/night cycle.  I could be wrong, though.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Radical21 on December 12, 2010, 07:49:41 pm
Day/Night cycle is logical but can only be included with options to compensate for the downtime either by switiching characters, using animalism, exploring Dragon Age like "Fade dimension" when the kindred sleeps or making it Kindred:The Embraced daywalking style(Shortlived Masquerade-based TV series by white-wolf where vampires can walk during the day if they fed)

Without Day/Night Cycle many of the disciplines lose their edge, especially the survivalist based disciplines of clan Gangrel if they become implamented as they are and anything to do with Havens becomes trivial and insignificant which results in no explanation for some of the politics of kindred, I guess kindred still have a reason to fear mobs with torches and pitchforks coming at them but less so because they dont need to worry about being vlunrable during a period of the day which means they can be constantly on the move like humans are and have no real reason to claim for territory..

Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 12, 2010, 08:31:40 pm
Day/Night cycle is logical but can only be included with options to compensate for the downtime either by switiching characters, using animalism, exploring Dragon Age like "Fade dimension" when the kindred sleeps or making it Kindred:The Embraced daywalking style(Shortlived Masquerade-based TV series by white-wolf where vampires can walk during the day if they fed)

 :smile:  I have that 'Kindred: The Embraced' on DVD.  It's a little cheesy, and they changed a lot, but I still like it.

As far as daywalking goes, in the Bram Stoker novel Dracula could walk in daylight too, but he was weakened, and probably couldn't use some powers.  It would change a number of things, but having vampires weakened in daylight would make humans a more playable class.  At least it would solve the problem of not being able to play your vamp during daytime.  Maybe vamps would be unable to use most disciplines except mental ones (Dominate, Presence, Obfuscate).  Fortitude would still be important, because it could mean that you aren't weakened quite so much by daylight.

I don't know.  There are a few pluses to this, but do you think CCP would do this?  Or will they stick to the 'vampire meets sunlight = burst into flame' scenario that White Wolf has always used in the WOD?
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 12, 2010, 09:00:15 pm
It'd be kinda fun to have daylight but I don't see it happening. Would vamps then be forced to sleep or just forced underground? Each city could have a fully realized sewer system  for the day period or like you said, just weaken vamps during the day. So long as they don't sparkle.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: zepherin on December 12, 2010, 09:34:06 pm
The problem with daylight is that it closes off content at certain points in the game. Even weakened it's not like a vamp is going to want to fight anyone during that state.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 12, 2010, 11:44:47 pm
MMOGs have different needs than tabletop games. They cannot model the PnP and hope to make any money. While the game will use the World of Darkness IP, it will take it in entirely new directions as befits the new medium. I do not expect them to do something like putting limits on the vampire population. Sure, it may not fit the PnP, but this the MMOG. Different rules apply. The only thing that matters is what attracts new players and makes more money. CCP is a business like any other. Do not forget that.

The CCP president himself stated that World of Darkness will be designed to attract casual players and new demographics. The tabletop segment is a horrible demographic to attract, because they are toxic and drive new customers away. (http://www.mobunited.com/mobunitedmedia/2010/06/19/why-you-cant-have-nice-things/)

As far as cities are concerned, every modern-day MMOG has been based in one city. The Matrix Online and All Points Bulletin were both based in single cities, neither of which were based directly on real cities. Why? I think that it's because one city is easier to work with. So there is precedent.

Furthermore, the traditional "kill mobs for loot" model is quickly becoming outdated. The most popular MMOG right now is FarmVille, a farming simulation, with 62 million active players despite controversy (and a single unified world). What I see as a common thread here is that most potential players posting here simply want to grind against mobs or other players. This is not a recipe for profit. Profit would instead be best achieved by being more "social." You may not like it, but it is the way of the future.

Why bother having multiple cities? If travel is difficult, few people will travel. What if friends are separated by vast distances simply because they choose different cities at character creation? They would find the game unfun and would leave because they couldn't socialize with their friends. The game should cater to the social crowd; easy communication and travel is key. Cliques and conflict will naturally follow from that.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Alan Drayson on December 12, 2010, 11:47:57 pm
I'd welcome limitation in favor of realism... No one person should have all things available at any given point in the game.  If you want to operate in the daylight, play a Hunter.  Don't pervert the original strengths and weaknesses of each race for the sake of an inherently unachievable balance
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 12, 2010, 11:51:48 pm
I'd welcome limitation in favor of realism... No one person should have all things available at any given point in the game.  If you want to operate in the daylight, play a Hunter.  Don't pervert the original strengths and weaknesses of each race for the sake of an inherently unachievable balance
MMOGs cannot work without balance. Any weakness will be exploited almost instantly. People will stop playing a particular class, or gravitate towards one in particular. Balance is key. If it means permanight or altering the splats, then so be it. The IP is a guideline, not a rule.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Nanaloma on December 13, 2010, 12:16:42 am
It'd be kinda fun to have daylight but I don't see it happening. Would vamps then be forced to sleep or just forced underground? Each city could have a fully realized sewer system  for the day period or like you said, just weaken vamps during the day. So long as they don't sparkle.

If I'm not mistaken, in WoD, vampires are weakened in the daytime even if underground with absolutely zero sunlight. 
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Nanaloma on December 13, 2010, 12:33:47 am
MMOGs have different needs than tabletop games. They cannot model the PnP and hope to make any money. While the game will use the World of Darkness IP, it will take it in entirely new directions as befits the new medium. I do not expect them to do something like putting limits on the vampire population. Sure, it may not fit the PnP, but this the MMOG. Different rules apply. The only thing that matters is what attracts new players and makes more money. CCP is a business like any other. Do not forget that.

The CCP president himself stated that World of Darkness will be designed to attract casual players and new demographics. The tabletop segment is a horrible demographic to attract, because they are toxic and drive new customers away. (http://www.mobunited.com/mobunitedmedia/2010/06/19/why-you-cant-have-nice-things/)

As far as cities are concerned, every modern-day MMOG has been based in one city. The Matrix Online and All Points Bulletin were both based in single cities, neither of which were based directly on real cities. Why? I think that it's because one city is easier to work with. So there is precedent.

Furthermore, the traditional "kill mobs for loot" model is quickly becoming outdated. The most popular MMOG right now is FarmVille, a farming simulation, with 62 million active players despite controversy (and a single unified world). What I see as a common thread here is that most potential players posting here simply want to grind against mobs or other players. This is not a recipe for profit. Profit would instead be best achieved by being more "social." You may not like it, but it is the way of the future.

Why bother having multiple cities? If travel is difficult, few people will travel. What if friends are separated by vast distances simply because they choose different cities at character creation? They would find the game unfun and would leave because they couldn't socialize with their friends. The game should cater to the social crowd; easy communication and travel is key. Cliques and conflict will naturally follow from that.

I long been a fan of multiple cities because of the strategic implications but, you are right in that a city can be subdivided into segments controlled by different mob bosses (a prince :) ).  In the 1920s US, sections of cities were controlled by different mobs who fought each other for more power (money).  The OWoD could be molded into this fairly easily although the old world vs new world, Asia vs west, etc flavor would be voided. 
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 13, 2010, 12:59:39 am
The OWoD could be molded into this fairly easily although the old world vs new world, Asia vs west, etc flavor would be voided.
Asia versus west is precisely what we don't want. It's outdated and racist. I don't even think most people really have any understanding of the actual Asia.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 13, 2010, 01:31:40 am
Racist?  Really?  How about latency and language barriers?  :beam:

EDIT: heh, I thought you were talking about servers: Asia, US West, US East, Europe, etc.  Now that I know what you're talking about, I agree...the KotE/VtM thing (and Assamites) are flimsy conflict models based largely on a "they're different, therefore they're the enemy" mindset.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 13, 2010, 01:34:29 am
MMOGs have different needs than tabletop games. They cannot model the PnP and hope to make any money. While the game will use the World of Darkness IP, it will take it in entirely new directions as befits the new medium. I do not expect them to do something like putting limits on the vampire population. Sure, it may not fit the PnP, but this the MMOG. Different rules apply. The only thing that matters is what attracts new players and makes more money. CCP is a business like any other. Do not forget that.

The CCP president himself stated that World of Darkness will be designed to attract casual players and new demographics. The tabletop segment is a horrible demographic to attract, because they are toxic and drive new customers away. (http://www.mobunited.com/mobunitedmedia/2010/06/19/why-you-cant-have-nice-things/)

Yes, you've referenced that blog post before, to point out what horrible people the PnP players are, and why PnP content (specifically OWoD) should not be used in the MMO.  However, that particular quote about toxic players is not by the CCP President, as you seem to imply by the proximity of the link, but by Malcolm Sheppard, who is basically just another guy, like us.  Also, both Mike Tinney (CCP President, North America) and Nathan Richardsson (Executive Producer) have said that they want to attract new players as well as keep the fans of the PnP games.  So they will be trying to keep us happy, too.

Furthermore, the traditional "kill mobs for loot" model is quickly becoming outdated. The most popular MMOG right now is FarmVille, a farming simulation, with 62 million active players despite controversy (and a single unified world). What I see as a common thread here is that most potential players posting here simply want to grind against mobs or other players. This is not a recipe for profit. Profit would instead be best achieved by being more "social." You may not like it, but it is the way of the future.

Who's talking about killing mobs for loot?  Don't really see that in this thread.  All I've been saying is that the basic dynamic in the PnP games is smaller groups of vampires in each city, as opposed to the large-scale corporate-style interactions favored in EVE, which you seem to want for the WODMMO.  I am all for social interaction in the MMO; but most of the social interaction I've read about in EVE Online are large-scale alliances between corporate/military groups, or large-scale battles when that diplomacy fails.  Is that what your ideal is for the WODMMO?  That's hardly a departure from the 'mob killing' and player-killing you've spoken against in the past.

Why bother having multiple cities? If travel is difficult, few people will travel. What if friends are separated by vast distances simply because they choose different cities at character creation? They would find the game unfun and would leave because they couldn't socialize with their friends. The game should cater to the social crowd; easy communication and travel is key. Cliques and conflict will naturally follow from that.

An easy fix for the example you mention is to be able to specify what city you wish to start in, so you can join up with your friends in that city.  As for  few people traveling... good.  I've said before that one advantage to having different cities is that the game could place you in a different city when you die.  This would allow for resurrection of your character, while still maintaining a semblance of reality in the city you left.  If there is no way to get rid of an enemy permanently, this is not realism.  If the player really, really wants to go back to his old city, fine, but he should have a hard time doing so.  This would make his return a rare occurence, and could be explained by his allies removing his torpid body before it could be destroyed.

Basically, I believe the atmosphere of the MMO would suffer from being too much like EVE Online, and emphasizing large-scale corporate dynamics rather than (relatively) small-scale group interaction.  Otherwise you will simply have huge battles between hundreds of allied vampires in the streets of your 'Super-Mega-City', similar to the conflicts in EVE.  This is the main reason I would prefer to see smaller cities, and groups of no more than a few hundred vampires in each city.  Whether this would be possible, I do not know.  But I think the alternative would be detrimental to any game that is supposedly based on 'Social Interaction'.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: zepherin on December 13, 2010, 03:45:47 am
Or they could allow a fast travel method of going between cities. Taxi cab, plane or whatever.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Aydoo on December 13, 2010, 06:13:47 am
Or you could walk there and chance getting mauled by bears.














I rather fight bears.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: zepherin on December 13, 2010, 10:40:52 am
Or you could walk there and chance getting mauled by bears.













I rather fight bears.
You say that until you run into a Gurahl and you have to respawn.
edited because I failed at quoting
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 13, 2010, 01:36:40 pm
Or you could walk there and chance getting mauled by bears.

You say that until you run into a Gurahl and you have to respawn.

Wolfies iz bad enuf, without bringin' kittehz and teddy bearz and other breed critterz into the mix.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Radical21 on December 13, 2010, 04:28:45 pm
Day/Night cycle is logical but can only be included with options to compensate for the downtime either by switiching characters, using animalism, exploring Dragon Age like "Fade dimension" when the kindred sleeps or making it Kindred:The Embraced daywalking style(Shortlived Masquerade-based TV series by white-wolf where vampires can walk during the day if they fed)

 :smile:  I have that 'Kindred: The Embraced' on DVD.  It's a little cheesy, and they changed a lot, but I still like it.

As far as daywalking goes, in the Bram Stoker novel Dracula could walk in daylight too, but he was weakened, and probably couldn't use some powers.  It would change a number of things, but having vampires weakened in daylight would make humans a more playable class.  At least it would solve the problem of not being able to play your vamp during daytime.  Maybe vamps would be unable to use most disciplines except mental ones (Dominate, Presence, Obfuscate).  Fortitude would still be important, because it could mean that you aren't weakened quite so much by daylight.

I don't know.  There are a few pluses to this, but do you think CCP would do this?  Or will they stick to the 'vampire meets sunlight = burst into flame' scenario that White Wolf has always used in the WOD?

Hoping for the latter really. I have ceased playing MMORPGs because the genere bacame mostly bland in latest years because developers are afraid to do something to Radical due to people like Don Strudel immidiatly reading about their impending financial downfall from a fortune cookie.

Do I think they will do this? it takes guts and it means that their game has to be really polished and rewarding in other areas.
This is all really a balance, the Average joe would probably go "Oh I can't play my character how I want during daylight *rant rant rant*" but if you give something that makes him go "Ok but this game is still better than playing most of the other fluff out there" then its less of a problem.

 CCP is not trying to compete against Blizzard or provide a service that caters to the mainstream AFAIK, and why should they? the Market is saturated with mainstream products so I think doing that would lead to many people losing interest quickly, especially WoD fans who were expecting a game with a minimum amount of depth would have a far more negative impact on the community than VTR had on some VTM fans.

Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: zepherin on December 13, 2010, 09:43:33 pm
CCP is not trying to compete against Blizzard or provide a service that caters to the mainstream AFAIK, and why should they? the Market is saturated with mainstream products so I think doing that would lead to many people losing interest quickly, especially WoD fans who were expecting a game with a minimum amount of depth would have a far more negative impact on the community than VTR had on some VTM fans.
This is important. The idea that CCP is not trying to "kill WOW" or come up with "the next WOW." There is this feeling with each new MMO that it is going to do one of the above and I think that is faulty reasoning. WOW did the right thing at the right time and then polished it well, but for the next success the goal shouldn't be to be the next WOW as it is to create something new.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on December 14, 2010, 02:08:27 am
Don Strudel, I wanted to post to say I've really appreciated your input in this thread. Early hardcore audiences lose sight easily of the basics of the industry, and it's often hard to engage in meaningful discussions as a result. Voices of wisdom are thus sometimes all too rare, but I appreciate yours. As mainstream fans pour in closer to release, I expect the debates to change alot over time.

Anyhow, I'll pitch in two cents about a couple things touched in this thread:

Regarding travel: I think its a given that the devs will want to make the whole game accessible in terms of travel, perhaps with a bit of effort but not too much. That means if the game spans the globe, an issue of plausibility will certainly arise, with people able to "take flights" thatll fundamentally let them teleport from NY to London with minimal travel time. The old paragdim of "Waiting for the Boat" is dead in the water, has been for a decade. Therefore, I prefer to see the game in a tighter geographic space, a "Greater Newcastle" of sorts for those familiar with Damnation City. The fast travel makes more sense if its a Taxi ride over a few miles than it does as a trans-oceanic flight.

As for the politics of the damned and the relation to daylight, I dont want to touch that topic too deeply as it derails every other thread, but in P&P, we all accept that our characters bear the curse of daylight and sleep half their time away even though we never play during the day and have zero downtime related to the sun. (I assume this is true of most games) Its assumed that its there, that it affects the character and its politics, but its a Passive/Off-screen thing unless Plot makes the ST decide to put it front-and-center a brief moment. The same thing will be true in the MMORPG. The devs won't make the world perma-night, they'll make the game perma-night. There's a big difference. Daylight will be assumed to happen when you aren't playing, and characters will be assumed to sleep half their lives away even though players will have zero downtime as a result; just like in PnP. For dramatic events, instanced daylight zones could totally exist; and if other splats are ever introduced, I'd favor the possibility of permanantly instanced night and day zones like on Tortage in Age of Conan. That essentially allows everyone to play at night or day at any time of their choosing; both exist at all times, separately, and you cannot interact with those in the other half. Such a system has all the advantages and none of the drawbacks from a gameplay POV, and would cause no player frustration. And that - minimizing player frustration - IS a big deal. It even offers a tangible advantage to non-Kindred; the certainty to be able to avoid Kindred entirely by staying in daylight instances, creating a very real restriction on Kindred, very true to the theme of the sunlight restrictions.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 14, 2010, 03:36:09 am
Don Strudel, I wanted to post to say I've really appreciated your input in this thread. Early hardcore audiences lose sight easily of the basics of the industry, and it's often hard to engage in meaningful discussions as a result. Voices of wisdom are thus sometimes all too rare, but I appreciate yours. As mainstream fans pour in closer to release, I expect the debates to change alot over time.

I will second the notion that Don Strudel has some good points.  I've found myself agreeing with a lot of the stuff he's said in this forum.  Of course, one of the negative aspects of forums is that people are less likely to post a response when they agree, than when they disagree with the post.  For me, this thread happened to be one of the latter.  However, I will say that casually dismissing someone else's comment by calling it a 'stupid argument' is neither the voice of wisdom, nor is it a meaningful discussion.

As for the politics of the damned and the relation to daylight, I dont want to touch that topic too deeply as it derails every other thread, but in P&P, we all accept that our characters bear the curse of daylight and sleep half their time away even though we never play during the day and have zero downtime related to the sun. (I assume this is true of most games) Its assumed that its there, that it affects the character and its politics, but its a Passive/Off-screen thing unless Plot makes the ST decide to put it front-and-center a brief moment. The same thing will be true in the MMORPG. The devs won't make the world perma-night, they'll make the game perma-night. There's a big difference. Daylight will be assumed to happen when you aren't playing, and characters will be assumed to sleep half their lives away even though players will have zero downtime as a result; just like in PnP. For dramatic events, instanced daylight zones could totally exist; and if other splats are ever introduced, I'd favor the possibility of permanantly instanced night and day zones like on Tortage in Age of Conan. That essentially allows everyone to play at night or day at any time of their choosing; both exist at all times, separately, and you cannot interact with those in the other half. Such a system has all the advantages and none of the drawbacks from a gameplay POV, and would cause no player frustration. And that - minimizing player frustration - IS a big deal. It even offers a tangible advantage to non-Kindred; the certainty to be able to avoid Kindred entirely by staying in daylight instances, creating a very real restriction on Kindred, very true to the theme of the sunlight restrictions.

I'll have to admit that the idea of having areas of the game in permanent daylight didn't occur to me.  Is it realistic?  Not really, but it would make sense in game terms, and simulate the day/night divide effectively.  Vampires would be simply unable to enter these areas, except perhaps through underground passages, and with their powers reduced due to being awake during the day.  The vamps would be forced to work through ghouls, just as they do in the PnP game.  I like it.  Perhaps that's how CCP will solve the problem.

Of course, that can ultimately be said for everything we discuss in these forums.  We won't know how CCP has addressed all of these issues until the game comes out (or perhaps shortly before, if they release some game videos or something).  All of this is speculation, about how we would like these problems to be solved.  We have to trust that CCP will find a compromise that will keep everyone relatively happy, and keep the game running successfully for a long time.

(I just really, really hope that it doesn't turn out to be 'EVE Online with fangs'.   :smile:   And nothing like World Of Warcraft.)
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Malavis on December 14, 2010, 03:47:34 am
Quote
However, I will say that casually dismissing someone else's comment by calling it a 'stupid argument' is neither the voice of wisdom, nor is it a meaningful discussion.

That's a really stupid argument.    :vampsmile:

I did want to thank don strudel for a really good read in the "Why we can't have nice things" link. It's so true! Enjoying hardcore games is made so very difficult by hardcore gamers.

My actor friends don't have a hard time with it, since they're in it for the character, but for some reason my friends that work in tech fields just don't grasp the concept that it's not only about winning or having the most bad-ass character, it's about the experience. (Which is sometimes having a bad-ass character, but only if that is part of your character's penultimate goals.)

I also LOVE the idea of instanced daylight- Acting against your rivals with super-weakened characters (Your Ghouls) with special abilities, or having the option of banging your head against content by night to level your character proper.
Be it like assassin's creed: Brotherhood, where you send them on missions with difficulty ratings and hope they make it back, or take control of either ghouled human or ghouled animal with benefits for either depending on build etc-- Making your strikes more effective since big daddy vampire can't actually show up to stop it, it's more like a surgical strike. However, lose that ghoul and there are repercussions of some kind. I'd love to see something like that, I think it would break the grind big-time.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on December 14, 2010, 04:20:16 am
A clarification about perma-day instances; the idea is of course that the content would be available in night-time too (although there would be minor differences like NPC density perhaps), but essentially, you would have say, Ocean Beach (Day) and Ocean Beach (Night) as "zones". An hypothetical Hunter PC could go in both easily, suggesting that he's planning his schedule around what he needs to do. The Kindred PC can only go to the (Night) one, where he can enjoy pretty much everything that the area has to offer aside from the beauty of the day and interactions with whatever PCs are hiding in the day time, or day-only NPCs if any.

If there are quests offered in the area, they could likely be done in both instances, of course. This system minimizes the development time because you essentially get to re-use the same maps with minimal tweaks, and you keep the flavor of the setting much better than with "night only". There are some small plausibility concerns, such as characters being able to wrap between both too fast or too often but overall it works. In addition to being used in Age of Conan, its also a system very popular in multi-venue around-the-clock WOD games. Its not perfect... but it sure beats forced downtime. It lets everyone play, all the time, and it maintains that tangible "Im a Vampire and because of that there are things I cant do" vibe.

Of course, it ONLY makes sense if there are non-Vampires in the game. So this isnt a system we're likely to see in the initial release, at all.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 14, 2010, 04:46:25 am
Quote
However, I will say that casually dismissing someone else's comment by calling it a 'stupid argument' is neither the voice of wisdom, nor is it a meaningful discussion.

That's a really stupid argument.    :vampsmile:

No you're stupid, stupidhead!   :rofl:

I laughed when you mentioned having control of ghouled humans and animals -- I had this vision of sending my ghoul parrot to spy on a meeting, to report back what they said.  "Rawwkk!  Polly wants a blood point!"  (Okay, maybe it was just funny to me.)

I've had the good luck to play with some groups of people who really try to act in character.  Some of the most toxic gamers I've known have been the guys who claim that they've played every game out there.  What they fail to mention is that they play the same asshole in every single one.  Rules lawyers are bad, too.  I usually know the rules of whatever game I'm playing very well, because I have a good memory.  But I don't interrupt the game to argue about that one extra die of damage, or to debate just why a certain penalty doesn't apply in this case.

A clarification about perma-day instances; the idea is of course that the content would be available in night-time too (although there would be minor differences like NPC density perhaps), but essentially, you would have say, Ocean Beach (Day) and Ocean Beach (Night) as "zones".
(Edit.)
Of course, it ONLY makes sense if there are non-Vampires in the game. So this isnt a system we're likely to see in the initial release, at all.

I think it's possible we might see ghouls in the initial release.  They are so much a part of the vampire 'experience' that it's hard to imagine gaining control of certain areas without making someone your ghoul (CEO, police detective, etc.)  How much control we'll have over them is another matter.  If we can't send them on missions, or control them directly, then having daylight would indeed be a moot point at the start.

[P.S. - Good grief, this PGM1961 guy needs to get a life.  I see his avatar way too much.]
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Malavis on December 14, 2010, 06:11:44 am
Quote
However, I will say that casually dismissing someone else's comment by calling it a 'stupid argument' is neither the voice of wisdom, nor is it a meaningful discussion.

That's a really stupid argument.    :vampsmile:

No you're stupid, stupidhead!   :rofl:
YOUR head is stupider.

Quote
I laughed when you mentioned having control of ghouled humans and animals -- I had this vision of sending my ghoul parrot to spy on a meeting, to report back what they said.  "Rawwkk!  Polly wants a blood point!"  (Okay, maybe it was just funny to me.)

Nope, I found that funny too, lol... But in a weird way it would still be fun as hell to pull out-of-the-box stuff like that. Like a break in the monotony of quest grinding by getting in a vehicle and driving around- it'd be fun to get out of your moody vampire self and go and be a moody, BLOOD ADDICTED extremely horny mortal version of yourself.
So.... It's like the less socially awkward version of actually GOING outside, with the blood addiction added for flavor.

Quote
I've had the good luck to play with some groups of people who really try to act in character.  Some of the most toxic gamers I've known have been the guys who claim that they've played every game out there.  What they fail to mention is that they play the same asshole in every single one.  Rules lawyers are bad, too.  I usually know the rules of whatever game I'm playing very well, because I have a good memory.  But I don't interrupt the game to argue about that one extra die of damage, or to debate just why a certain penalty doesn't apply in this case.
That's good. Nothing worse than rules arguments getting in the way of good RP.


Quote
[P.S. - Good grief, this PGM1961 guy needs to get a life.  I see his avatar way too much.]
Lol- You should see the IC thread of our Pbp game right now. My avatar pops up every 10 seconds. :P It seems we BOTH spend way too much time on this forum :P
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Radical21 on December 15, 2010, 03:23:44 am
Of course, it ONLY makes sense if there are non-Vampires in the game. So this isnt a system we're likely to see in the initial release, at all.

Yeah cause god forbid there would be any Humans walking around, only casuall emo vampires who enjoy the power and cry if you dare tell them that it comes at a terriable price.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on December 15, 2010, 11:55:13 am
Of course, it ONLY makes sense if there are non-Vampires in the game. So this isnt a system we're likely to see in the initial release, at all.

Yeah cause god forbid there would be any Humans walking around, only casuall emo vampires who enjoy the power and cry if you dare tell them that it comes at a terriable price.

What is this, I don't even? Seriously - no offense, but don't bother replying to my posts if you're going to just be bitter or flame. It's a waste of both our time, especially considering I went out of my way to come up with creative gap-bridging mechanics like this one, which seems to at least intrigue a portion of the pro-sunlight crowd. If nothing else, because devs read this forum, it's best if we all at least try to post constructively.

I wrote that  it was unlikely in the initial release because one of the very few pieces of information we have about the game says the initial release will be Vampires-only. Neither humans nor ghouls seem to appear on the menu, and therefore unless that changes, any day-only instances would obviously be expansion material. As for the terrible price - it will be part of the implied existence of our characters regardless and you'll still get to roleplay any parts of their weaknesses that are based on lore rather than gameplay mechanics. Its totally possible to explore horror themes without having to cope with horrible mechanics, and they may yet come up with creative ways to please everyone. But at the end of the day, this is a game they're building - they'll make fun for the players.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 15, 2010, 05:21:45 pm
Most of the profit will be coming from those "emo pussies" you treat so dismissively. God knows that description fits all the larpers.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Radical21 on December 15, 2010, 07:38:59 pm
For the record Don, I said "emo-vampires" , you are the one who is bringing  the negative slur into it.

 So is it all just about profit? I can think of easier ways to make money and appealing to a mass crowd.. at the end of the day the vision behind WoD or EvE doesn't seem like a result of thought of profit margins,, judging by how both companies seem to have metaphorically shot themselves in the foot at some point in this regard...

I'm only saying that it seems like Money is not the primary motivation behind these titles. The people who make them are passionate about game making and roleplaying,

I mean it would probably be alot easier to Adapt Scion or Exalted(White-Wolf's more conventional PnP titles) into an MMORPG.

Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 15, 2010, 09:04:24 pm
Even though Exalted is not as popular as the VtM/VtR line, I'll bet some other developer could have turned it into a really popular game among the WOW "OMG-kewl-powers-and-gear!" crowd.  From what I've seen of the game system, it's perfect for that kind of player.

However, CCP/White Wolf chose a different game to turn into an MMO.  They had to know that it would never be as big as WOW.  Obviously, while making money is important to any company, that is not their sole priority here.  It seems they are more interested in taking a chance, turning out something that redefines the genre and attracts a wider demographic than the current grind-and-level games.  I'm sure there will be something about the game I don't like -- hell, no matter how good the game, you can always find something you wish they'd done differently.  But I'm hoping the WODMMO will be interesting enough that I don't care about the minor negative points.

I was first introduced to VtM through the LARPer crowd.  I didn't really like that game as well, partly because of the oddity of the players, but mostly because I found the real world setting inhibited my creativity in the live-action games.  But I enjoyed the PnP game, especially the setting and mood of the World of Darkness.

Hell, I'm hoping it's popular with the 'Twilight' and 'Vampire Diaries' crowd, too.  Think how much fun we would have messing with these people.  I don't mean ganking them, but messing with their heads... letting them know that being a vampire would not be just one long emogasm of tortured, forbidden love, but something you have to keep paying the price for, night after night.

The same applies to the WOW crowd.  I will enjoy hearing them complain when they find out that there are real consequences to the actions they take in the WoD.  "What?!  You mean I can't just go around killing people for fun?  That's not fair!  What about the guys who killed me?  Don't they get punished?"  "No, because they were actually working for the Prince, and his Sheriff.  If you hadn't been noob-killing at a spawn point, they wouldn't have killed you."   :vampsmile:
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Alan Drayson on December 15, 2010, 09:23:19 pm
Most of the profit will be coming from those "emo pussies" you treat so dismissively. God knows that description fits all the larpers.

O.o the one LARP I've ever been to had one of those self pity types, but that was his character choice.  We had people who relished in their nature, people dodging it with jokes, people burying themselves in politics... Obviously you haven't been to a decent LARP XD totally changed my opinion from the one you still have.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 15, 2010, 11:49:09 pm
However, I will say that casually dismissing someone else's comment by calling it a 'stupid argument' is neither the voice of wisdom, nor is it a meaningful discussion.
He was presenting it like it was an actual reason. Not to mention I hate oWoD hippie gangrel. nWoD "hard boiled survivor" gangrel are so much cooler.

For the record Don, I said "emo-vampires" , you are the one who is bringing  the negative slur into it.
Yes, I know. It's all in good fun. As far as I'm concerned, they're pussies to me. And I'm horny. I'm not being at all metaphorical when I say that. Something Awful has already given it's general opinion that the game will be a den of cybersex. Did CCP honestly expect people wouldn't abuse the GAY CLUBS the game is going to have? Sure, MOST gay people are CELIBATE (and I respect them for defying the stereotype), but the minority where we get heavily biased and flawed statistics from are STD-infested sex freaks. Not unlike James Bond, actually. Can you imagine a gay James Bond? Someone probably already has long before I was born.

Of course, White Wolf WAS responsible for that awful abomination masquerading as "art" in Montreal by Night.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Kian on December 16, 2010, 12:56:01 am
He was presenting it like it was an actual reason. Not to mention I hate oWoD hippie gangrel. nWoD "hard boiled survivor" gangrel are so much cooler.
So if you hate something its not vaild? Uh oh...
I hate that you think one city would be fun.  :razz:
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Nanaloma on December 16, 2010, 01:10:32 am
Hippie Gangrel?  That's a new one to me; never thought of them that way and, well, I just don't see it.  They were loners and prized self reliance even amongst their own and hippies are socialists living in communes.  I've always pictured them as more like the mountain men of 1800s America.  Maybe I'd see it if I knew something about NWoD and could compare but I've never had a good reason to delve into this. 
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 16, 2010, 01:19:39 am
I think the OWoD Gangrel were hippies only in the sense my great-uncle Walter used the term.  He labeled anyone a hippie if they didn't have a crew-cut.  (Males, that is... any woman with hair shorter than shoulder length "looked like a boy".)

I always considered the OWoD Gangrel to be the 'hard-boiled survivor' type that you said the NWoD Gangrel are.  You're probably thinking of OWoD Werewolves -- they were the "let's save the rainforest" types.  That got a little old after a while.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Alan Drayson on December 16, 2010, 01:38:00 am
I liked that they were passionate about such things, made it more fun to burn them down
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Radical21 on December 16, 2010, 03:17:06 am
Clan Stereotypes? did you know that all Tremere look like Harry Potter? or Merlin if you go DA.

Gangrel are basicly Wolverine

Ventrue are That buisinessman in a suit.

Nosferatu always looke like the nosferatu from the movie.

Toreador are pretty and wear loose clothing

Brujah are always punks with a mahawk and bad temper who want anarchy

Malkavians are basicly vampires who talks like brad pitt in 12 monkeys

Giovanni are always italian mobsters with an NYC accent.

Setites are basicly Ka from Junglebook except that they are humanoid.

Ravnos are all gypsies and they are all sleazy thieves.

Assamite are all Assassin Creed.

Lasombra all wear black and only black like The Crow and they are all gothic devil worshipers.

Tzimisce come either as Dr.Frankenstien or Genderless Alien from outer space who speaks about itself in third person.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 16, 2010, 06:01:04 am
Clan Stereotypes? did you know that all Tremere look like Harry Potter? or Merlin if you go DA.

Ventrue are That buisinessman in a suit.

Nosferatu always looke like the nosferatu from the movie.
(Etc.)

You're the one who told this to the Bloodlines developers, aren't you?  Especially the Nosferatu part.  Of course, in the case of the Tremere it's more like 'Harriet' Potter, since it's the female who has the glasses.

I do hope that Nosferatu in the WODMMO are a bit more random, and imaginative.  Perhaps a bit like some of the mutants in 'Total Recall'.  (And no, I don't mean the hooker with three breasts.)  As we've discussed before, most Nosferatu in Bloodlines weren't all that ugly.  Bertram Tung was the only one who looked convincing, with his assymetrical head and boils.

With the character creation system, it most likely will be the player's fault if his character looks like a clan caricature.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: _username on December 16, 2010, 07:18:07 am
You're the one who told this to the Bloodlines developers, aren't you?
Magic Missile-casting mother fucker!
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on December 17, 2010, 12:01:30 am
I still think the Masquerade stereotypes serious squander what little potential that the clans may have had. Why should all Nosferatu be information brokers? It makes absolutely no sense considering their inspiration (who was, in fact, an aristocrat). They're just as good at being legbreakers or nobility or loan sharks, better even, since they don't have Auspex naturally.

That's why I think the Requiem clans are superior. They aren't one-note jokes. Mekhet are far better suited for information gathering than oWoD Nosferatu ever were, and more mysterious than any Tremere. nWoD Nosferatu are actually scary and creepy as opposed to being just plain ugly, and can turn fear itself into a weapon. The cruelty and manipulation of the Daeva make the shallow Toreador look even more stupid than they already are. nWoD Gangrel aren't doomed to turn into furries, and are more in touch with the Beast than anyone else. nWoD Ventrue can be just as conniving as any Lasombra or as merciless as any Tzimisce, as opposed to the banal corporate employees that make up all the oWoD Ventrue.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Nigama on December 17, 2010, 08:02:07 pm
I still think the Masquerade stereotypes...

That's why I think the Requiem clans are superior. They aren't one-note jokes. Mekhet are far better suited for information gathering than oWoD Nosferatu ever were, and more mysterious than any Tremere. nWoD Nosferatu are actually scary and creepy as opposed to being just plain ugly, and can turn fear itself into a weapon. The cruelty and manipulation of the Daeva make the shallow Toreador look even more stupid than they already are. nWoD Gangrel aren't doomed to turn into furries, and are more in touch with the Beast than anyone else. nWoD Ventrue can be just as conniving as any Lasombra or as merciless as any Tzimisce, as opposed to the banal corporate employees that make up all the oWoD Ventrue.

I think you put your finger on it, tho...  those things you describe are just that, STEREOTYPES.  A easier way to pigeonhole a person/group based on outside views.  Are there exceptions to those usual traits?  Absolutely.

I dunno about you, but there's nothing stopping me from playing a Nosferatu aristocrat who is scary and creepy, and not just plain old ugly.  There's nothing stopping me from playing a cruel and manipulative Toreador.  Gangrel don't "turn into furries," that's a HUGE overstatement.  They take on animal like features.  You may like that, you may disagree with it, I'm fine with it.  I guess if you're playing in a campaign with a bunch of fur-folk then the game could devolve into something like that, but to try and claim that this is the norm for Gangrel is disingenuous at best.  And not all Ventrue are boring suits running corporations, they can be "as conniving as any Lasombra or as merciless as any Tzimisce"...  eesh...  It's like saying all American's are fat slobs, all Chinese are good at math, all african americans like fried chicken, all jewish people control the world's wealth and media organizations.  I mean to say, stereotypes are USUALLY false simply because individuals do not always fit so easily into these cookie cutter shapes we try to fit them into.

Your Clan doesn't fundamentally change who you are... what it does do is shape your views of the supernatural world since your Clan is your way of accessing and being introduced to that world.  And although most vampires of a particular clan look for character or personality traits that they want in their childe, sometimes childer are created for other reasons (necessity, chaos, an army of neonates, pariah's of the clan creating childer, etc) in which even RADICALLY different people from the rest of the clan and clan stereotypes could be embraced.

We need to stop setting limits on OWoD just because there was so much material and meta-material.  OWoD can be used to tell whatever tales we want.  Personally, I'd like it if they just attached Keywords to the clans instead of full stereotypes (to draw from your words: Cunning, Merciless, Mysterious, Scary, Creepy, Ugly, Conniving, Cruel, Manipulative - but EVEN these keywords only provide a snapshot of what the majority of the Clan represent, as it should be).

Nigama
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: PGM1961 on December 17, 2010, 08:36:48 pm
It only takes a few players lacking imagination to perpetuate a stereotype.  There are plenty of them out there -- they didn't all just stop gaming when VtM turned into VtR.  I'm sure there are Requiem players who play the stereotypical Daeva, lovely and cruel and bitchy, because it never occurred to them to break from this mold.

I believe CCP will stick to some sort of clan system in the MMO, simply because some gamers wouldn't know how to create an original character to save their lives.  I do hope we will be able to take additional/different disciplines at startup, though; even if the cost is more.  I want to keep people guessing.  (Especially if they use the NWoD clans... Animalism for Ventrue?  Come on-- possible for a few, but unlikely for the majority.)

Should be fun to mess with the so-called World of Darkness 'experts.'  "Wait... he wears a suit like a Ventrue, but he talks and fights like a Brujah!  How can that be?  He should be wearing biker's leathers!"  Or "Don't worry, that Nossie will be no prob-- Hey!  How is he keeping up with me?  Nosferatu don't have Celerity!"   :vampsmile:
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Dark_Ghost on December 20, 2010, 08:50:30 pm
One of the great things about CCP/WW doing the WoDo, if it's anything like eve you can find the people who annoy you.. the ones who make the stereotypes the horrific things they are.. and you can beat them to a bloody pulp AND take their stuff. Hopefully CCP/WW has the forsight to allow us to handle such in world matters in the world.

also, i'm going to refrain from to much talk about the new and old systems in white wolf. that time is over. I've table-topped and I've larped and I've PC-RPG'd my little guts out. Old system had a better more rich story, New system has a better more streamlined approach to the mathematics of actually doing something in the world. I hated rock paper scissors because after an hour of playing with anyone, it became to easy to guess what they would throw, thus making any challenges useless. As far as I am concerned White Wolf has seen it's last dime from me, until WoDo comes out.

other than that, if they have them i am playing either catiff or ventrue. i'll try to stick to any cities in the southern usa, if offered. though that is subject to change, given group preferences. 8D yes, i have my guild planned out in my head, i'm doing the basic designs for the website now. nothing to serious of course, just having some fun playing with ideas.

Hope you guys and girls are as excited about the possibilities as i am.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 09, 2011, 08:02:29 am
They managed to simulate multiple entire worlds in Star Wars Galaxies, and that wasn't too much more technologically advanced than when WoW came out. Sure, the "worlds" were only about 20 square kilometers, but that still gave you a LOT of space to get lost in. And that was with super-speed vehicles like jet speeders and landing shuttles.
With today's technological capabilities, they should be able to easily fabricate a realistically-sized city and not put TOO great a strain on even comparatively older video cards. Failing that, they can give us "instanced sandbox" sections of one huge city, like we saw in VTM - Bloodlines. Only, y'know, larger.

EDIT

Oh, wait, I'm sorry. I didn't realize this was another thread discussing the merits and flaws (pun intended) of OWoD VTM and NWoD VTR. I was fooled by the title "Why multiple cities are a bad thing..."

EDIT EDIT

By the way - what is a "shard"?
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Valamyr on February 09, 2011, 02:45:47 pm

By the way - what is a "shard"?

Its what some games call a 'server', ie a copy of the game world which is entirely parrallel and cut off from the others. WoW has well over a hundred copies of their game world whilst smaller MMOs sometimes have only a handful. CCP dislikes this practice and have said "single-shard" is part of their company philosophy for online games.

'Shard' comes from Ultima Online, the first game to use a system like this that cut their worlds into copies. They had a lore-friendly explanation behind it. The reason why people prefer to use Shard rather than 'Servers' is because the latter is very misleading. The hardware used server side doesn't work like that at all. Each WoW shard for instance is comprised of several servers with different tasks, and there are also a handful of systems that service multiple shards simultaneously. Calling the worlds 'servers' thus cause the techies to wince, making us fall back to 'shard' terminology.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Rick Gentle on February 09, 2011, 10:20:58 pm
Oh, okay. Same meaning, different name. Gods, I hate - I mean, love, I LOVE - the digital age, with all its fancy new terms.

I think that if we're all going to be on one server, they're going to take a scaled-back version of EVE Online, which is to say that each city is going to operate as one solar system or one "station" - but there're going to be quite a few of them all in one "world" (ex: the larger galaxy of EVE). That way, you need to warp in - sorry, I mean load into the instance of each "sandbox" city. That way there's not so much lag from reading what every player is doing at this very moment.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on March 09, 2011, 06:17:27 pm
Realistically speaking, there is no difference between having one big city separated into districts and hundreds of smaller cities. If travel is difficult, then people will congregate around certain areas, rendering the point moot. And what about two friends that want to play together, but are forced into different cities/servers for "population control?" That's not fun, that's annoying and drives people away. Players should be free to play with their friends and not be forced into specific locations. AKA, population control belongs in the trash, it has no place in MMOGs.

Having multiple cities will not provide more interesting politics. You can do the exact same thing with a city separated into fiefdoms. Having cities be based on real-world cities is silly, because they will look nothing alike. Having a custom city would avoid the baggage. Say, New Bremen or Newcastle? New Bremen was the name of the custom city used for the White Wolf RP chats. White Wolf has clearly shown they are more than capable of making one city worthwhile.

Additionally, a small-sized real-world city consists of well over 5000 buildings, 75,000 hotel rooms, and 2,040,000 rental apartments, not including private residences and offices. That is quite clearly enough support for having a single city. Why not make every building enterable? It would certainly remove the need for multiple cities if they don't waste precious space. Every contemporary-based MMOG has been set in a single city, and that's a noticeable trend for a reason.

It is highly unlikely that the MMOG will attract more than a few tens of thousands of players at launch. So don't act as though the game would be anywhere near a fraction of WoW.
Title: Re: Why multiple cities are a bad idea: they don't scale well
Post by: Don Strudel on March 09, 2011, 06:20:52 pm
Oh, okay. Same meaning, different name. Gods, I hate - I mean, love, I LOVE - the digital age, with all its fancy new terms.

I think that if we're all going to be on one server, they're going to take a scaled-back version of EVE Online, which is to say that each city is going to operate as one solar system or one "station" - but there're going to be quite a few of them all in one "world" (ex: the larger galaxy of EVE). That way, you need to warp in - sorry, I mean load into the instance of each "sandbox" city. That way there's not so much lag from reading what every[/b] player is doing at this very moment.
Stations don't function remotely like cities. They're gas stations at best. There's only a few thousand of them in the game.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on March 09, 2011, 09:05:17 pm
AHAH! I knew there was a "City Discussion" thread around here somewhere, but I couldn't find it.

Best of both worlds: One HUGE central downtown area, like the traditional "big city" such as Los Angeles or New York, with lots of smaller cookie-cutter suburban/mini-city zones.
Think of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines where Downtown is ten times the size it was in the game, but then you also have alternate zones - "baronies", if you will - where other vampires aside from the Prince and his court can claim domain. Los Angeles and New York are all one big city, technically, but they have a lot of ancillary communities around them that are all sort of "the city of L.A." or "the city of New York". You don't introduce yourself as saying you come from Manhattan or from Longbeach - you're from "New York". (At least, to outsiders - city and neighborhood distinctions get very important to other residents. I can see this also making its way into the WODMMO - "Oh, you're from Hollywood? That's mostly Anarch territory...")
So, while there is one big huge communal area, there are also lots of other, much smaller, zones where players can enforce smaller bodies of vampires, but still feel like they're controlling something more than a city block. You could even attach different resources to different areas - the High Finance District gets you a lot of cash if you have the right Abilities; the Rack gets you access to a lot of blood dolls; Suburbia One has a lot of havens available. However, you could also throw in drawbacks - the police are in constant force in the High Finance District; the Rack is a dangerous part of town, and has a higher potential for Masquerade breaches because of all the vampires hanging out there; Suburbia One doesn't have the population to sustain more than a few vampires, and it's not exactly high-class.

I'm not sure I like the idea of using a real-life city in the WODMMO. If it was a real-life city, I'd have to see the sort of landmarks that make it THAT city. This apparently brings in copyright issues. Also, I'd have to see that that city was updated to match real world changes, for full immersion's sake. So help me if I don't get to visit the Statue of Liberty and jump off it, transforming into a seagull on the way down and flapping off across the harbor.
I think I would much prefer a made-up city, or a "World of Darkness mirror city" - like how Gotham City is the "dark reflection" of New York. There's no giant Wayne Enterprises building in the real New York, but there is in Gotham. I would gladly submit my concept for "Tempest Coast", a "dark reflection" city I based on Miami for my Sabbat chronicle.
However, I'm looking at the concept art for the Word of Darkness MMO that was released - the picture that's a vista of the city at night. I can't pinpoint it as any specific city, not that it's exactly easy to tell. It has a river or canal, a few tall buildings, but nothing really distinctive. I would like to leave it up to the players to determine things like city name, environment, and domains.

----------------

Stations in EVE are a lot busier than you seem to think, Don Strudel. Remember all those quests to go get AIMEDs, foodstuffs, diplomats, and transferring prisoners or soldiers to and from stations? They may be no more than "gas stations" to most players, because all we do do to interact with them at this point is dock and do some services. But when Incarna comes, I bet there'll be a lot more to do. They're not little cities, not by any stretch of the imagination. They're HUGE cities. They're like hive cities from the Warhammer 40K universe. In space.

----------------

EDIT

Having "vanity" buildings is stupid. Why not make every building enterable? It would certainly remove the need for multiple cities if we didn't waste precious space. You're just making excuses at this point.

I'm not making excuses - I'm telling you what game companies DO. It's called building atmosphere. Sure, you could have a half-dozen buildings that you can all enter, like in World of WarCraft, or you can have a whole city with a lot of buildings you can't enter - but then, as I mentioned in my previous post, when would you ever enter those buildings in the first place? The ratio for enterable buildings can be much higher in the suburban zones, since they'll be smaller, more easily created and managed, and can basically have cookie-cutter content.
If CCP/White-Wolf really wants to make every building enterable, more power to them. I'm not arguing that it wouldn't be nice, but I'm saying that we have to consider the amount of resources the companies want to spend on a whole lot of content only a fraction of the player base is going to use. The phrase "cost-effectiveness" comes to mind.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on March 09, 2011, 10:38:48 pm
From an in-character standpoint in Eve, stations are enormous machines: up to 50km long in some cases.  Most of that bulk is dedicated to automated factories, refineries, storage, hangars, etc. but a fair number of people are on board at any given time.  When a high profile station was destroyed in this infamous attack (http://www.eveonline.com/news/newsFromEve.asp?newsID=2026) a couple years ago, most of its residents/visitors (almost half a million) were killed.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on March 09, 2011, 10:44:56 pm
Well, maybe not HUGE cities, then. But certainly nothing to sneeze, cough, or wheeze at.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Don Strudel on March 09, 2011, 11:52:35 pm
Gentle, that's not the best of both worlds. That's what I've been trying to forward this whole time. A metropolitan area divided into numerous fiefdoms. If you wanted, you could have a European set-up and have several big cities that make up one contiguous state, with parks and sewers and suburbs and financial districts and docks and factories, etc.

But nWoD werewolves aren't tied to the wilderness. Nothing happens there besides nude sunbathing (not that I wouldn't mind). All the spirits (including nature spirits) congregate in cities, where the humans are, because they feed on the resonance generated by human activities. Werewolves are honor-bound to keep spirits from breaking into the human world and wreaking havoc. Though there are plenty of werewolves that couldn't care less, who make up the majority of the werewolf population (they're separated into Ghost Wolves, the Pure, and the Bale Hounds). Ghost Wolves are werewolves who have no ties to Forsaken society, for one reason or another, but still possess their auspices; this includes those werewolves claimed as kindred by the Baal-Hadad (bull shapechangers who worship Helios). The Pure are analogous to the Garou: they worship spirits, rape dogs, and generally treat humans like dirt (read: rape and/or eat them). The Bale Hounds can pass as completely normal people, but the truth is that they worship honest-to-goodness demons from Hell and secretly work to spread sin amongst the humans (because demons literally feed on sin).
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on March 10, 2011, 12:15:13 am
There is a slight difference between "one city divided into fiefdoms" and my conception. In mine, there's one big huge sandbox city that is NOT divided up (at least, not divided up in terms of loading or instanced content), but in addition there are a lot of smaller zones that ARE divided up by loading/instance/fiefdom. The difference is that the larger city is sort of the "wild zone" where players can do whatever they want, unsegregated by mechanics. If I'm understanding yours correctly, the divisions are largely player-based, according to player-formed factions' power - if you claim domain but can't keep it, that's tough shizzle. That's how things'll be in the downtown zone, but there are separate outside zones where control is much more definite.
Instead of claiming domain in the major city - which might be under the control of one powerful faction (the Camarilla, the Sabbat, etc), or function as the "open PvP" zone of the gameworld, where many factions vie for dominance -  player-characters are relegated to the outside zones in order to build up their influences and fight their wars. Only when one faction is powerful enough will they be able to claim some domain or area of influence in downtown itself, in a way not disimilar to the 0.0 security systems in EVE. I know that the idea of a "resources war" is a horrible one, and I hate games that turn into resource wars, but that seems to be the way games are going nowadays, especially if we're looking at EVE Online as an example.
The player-controlled zones will be the high(er)-security zones, where you can build the World of Darkness MMO equivalent of player-stations, marketplaces, repair shops, and other services Cainites might need. If one faction is very powerful in X outside zone, players from other factions won't want to visit there on pain of death, or, alternately, can play the political scene to oust the powerful faction with an alliance.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on March 10, 2011, 12:27:15 am
We keep talking about abusing modern technologies to create massive single shard cities or tons of cell cities merged into a massive single city. Screw this. Make the whole world, or to be exact, A whole world. The game is "World of Darkness" after all, not City of Vampires.  If you are going to think big, might as well go all the way.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on March 10, 2011, 01:31:44 am
They should be able to pull something like that off in terms of expansions. I believe I read somewhere that they're going to take the same strategy with the WODMMO as they do with EVE - lots of smaller, free updates and expansions. If they can add a dozen new systems to EVE with one expansion, I can see them adding one more barony/fief/minicity twice a year or so. If they get enough players to make the expansions worthwhile. If there aren't enough players to fill multiple cities, then it's going to become what Don Strudel fears - a few heavily-populated locations that serve as hubs, while everywhere else is dead empty.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on March 10, 2011, 01:44:57 am
Please, its like that anyway even if there are enough players.

The Only way to make it different is to give the characters a reason (other than grinding) to seek a  secret hideout.
I hate to say it but most of the reasons that make people want to withdraw in secret are:
Violence.
Fear.
Aggression.
Internet Porn.
Desire to live better in a place with less competition.
Starting a place where no Nossies allowed.


To the Average player most of these things probably seem bad (because I might lose all my hard work *sob sob*) but on the other hand if you don't use them you will end up with the "Hubs" and pointless "Dead space" you see in nearly every other MMORPG.

Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Malavis on March 10, 2011, 01:48:39 am
So... What Rad is saying... Is... To... Create a game full of... Violent Internet porn?




Yeah I can deal with that.
;)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on March 10, 2011, 01:53:57 am
So... What Rad is saying... Is... To... Create a game full of... Violent Internet porn?




Yeah I can deal with that.
;)

My point was that without these evil things you end up without any interesting conflict in the game and no reason for the players to do anything other than grind..
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Malavis on March 10, 2011, 01:54:54 am
I was just playing. I get ya.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on March 10, 2011, 04:01:19 am
Three words: Dee Emm Pee.
It worked for the Toreador antitribu (at least if you played the ClanQuest mod), it can work for the WODMMO. Talk about a Masquerade breach.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nosferatu Numbers Station on March 10, 2011, 04:28:09 am
Death Mask Productions?  BRILLIANT REFERENCE!
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nanaloma on March 10, 2011, 07:14:06 am
The feeling/atmosphere of, say Hong Kong cannot be felt in, say, Houston.  Attempts come out as corny like, say, Chinatown. 
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on March 10, 2011, 07:33:15 am
"A piss-poor copy of a real place."

(Two-for-two with the Bloodlines references. Who wants to try for a third?   :holy:)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 03, 2011, 07:57:54 am
Partially to bump this thread, 'cause we ain't nearly done with it, but mostly to get the ideas out there, I want to detail how I hope navigation around the city will go. This idea is based primarily on a "one huge city" concept, with comparatively little in the way of loaded or instanced content.

Navigation across the city includes such things as traveling between large instanced zones (such as the city hubs we saw in Bloodlines) and between distant locations in the same hub or region. First thing is: NO TELEPORTATION. It doesn't exist in the real world (yet), and it shouldn't in a WODMMO based loosely upon the real world. This means nothing like teleportation stones, logout/login respawns back to your haven, and no unexplained, presumably magical ways of getting through miles and miles of solid stone and steel. (Yes, that means no "Escape to True Friend" Ritual for the Tremere.)

Subways, taxis, and player-owned vehicles are okay. For these, I am prepared to see a starting point and a stopping point, so you don't always have to travel along the entire track every single time. The primary differences between this style and "teleportation" are that there will be a "take-off" section and a "landing" section, which are real on-the-tracks sections of travel. If any of you played Alliance in World of WarCraft and traveled between the Dwarf/Gnome city and Stormwind, think of that massive underground tram system they had. When you walked upon it, it left, and then traveled along the tracks for a while before loading you into a new zone. The same goes for the zepplin rides all around Azeroth. I also think roughly the same implementation should be used for subways in the WODMMO.

This way, there's still a chance for opposing player-characters to ambush one another while traveling, but doesn't force players to walk or ride every single last foot in the game. (TES: Morrowind. Bad.) But at the same time, it's not instantaneous, either with the launching point or the loading. Just like in real life, you should have to wait for subways, because they don't run according to your schedule, they run according to their own. This goes double for the World of Darkness, where I'm sure public transportation breaks down more often than in real life, and subways are frequently that extra minute late. I'm seeing either a subway that leaves every 15 minutes real-time, or, if game-time is sped up, every 1-3 minutes real time. There should be something of a wait, so you're taking a risk if the Sabbat is right on your tail, but there should be pretty good odds of you making it back to your haven alive.

This brings us to taxis and player-owned vehicles (cars, trucks, limosuines, motorcycles, whatever the developers feel like putting in). For the former, taxis, it costs a modest amount of money to travel relatively safely and anonymously (call it $50-100 in-game). The further apart the launch and landing zones are, the more it costs. The drawback is that traveling on the roads takes much longer than the launch-and-load method of the subway. Cabs are also restricted to one route, which cannot be changed once the player has stepped inside. However, these routes are randomized (as much as they can be) before launch. So if there are two ways to get where you want to go, there's a 50% chance your enemies got it wrong.

Player-owned vehicles cost the most - a realistic amount, like $15-20,000 in-game. They, too are restricted to the roads and places like parking structures. Player-characters driving them must also travel the entire distance in real time, no loading or skipping travel. The bonuses of having your own vehicle are threefold: one, you never have to wait for a subway or a cab; two, you can take whatever route you want, either cutting down your travel time for speed or taking a longer, more circuitous and stealthy route; and three, player-owned vehicles can be upgraded with more dots in the Drive and Crafting Abilities. (Like increase maximum speed, or putting in bullet-proof windows.) I suspect they will also serve as status symbols. They also have the potential to contain at least one passenger, more with vehicles such as trucks and limosuines.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 03, 2011, 10:56:26 am
i always loved the griphon/bat rides in WoW... though i guess with everything all flight zone now+epic flying mounts... its a lot less used (haven't played in ages so i don't know)

so i hope train rides and stuff, become similar so you get a nice tour of the city :)

also i think it can't be a "one big city" as ganrel chars just need more space then the local park...
unless its a really big park :)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Malavis on September 03, 2011, 12:22:13 pm
also i think it can't be a "one big city" as ganrel chars just need more space then the local park...
unless its a really big park :)

I generally just drop em off at the kennel or local pound.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Mir on September 03, 2011, 05:02:39 pm
also i think it can't be a "one big city" as ganrel chars just need more space then the local park...
unless its a really big park :)
Well, if it's one big big city, that could include a chunk of countryside on the outskirts of town.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 03, 2011, 09:10:12 pm
Alright, to put this in more direct terms:

Subways are Stormwind trams and zepplins.
Taxis are bat/griffon rides.
Player-owned vehicles are player mounts.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 20, 2011, 05:04:32 pm
So it's been pretty much confirmed that there will be multiple cities, all on one shard. Can't say I'm too horribly surprised, even if my original concept was for one big city that went on forever, symbolizing the bleak, cruel, and hard eternity facing Cainites.

But for a game as political as the WODMMO is marketed to be, having multiple cities makes sense. Also pretty much confirmed is the ability for players to assume the roles of Camarilla figures like Prince and primogen. Having multiple cities means competition between the highest levels of power, so instead of just fighting between potential Prince candidates of one city, cities will have to solidfy behind one strong political figure sooner or later to compete with the other cities. Once the Sabbat comes out, it'll add a whole new level to the struggle; they'll almost certainly add in a new city or two with the Sabbat expansion, which means we might get to play the metagame intrigue of a Sabbat Crusade without all the Gehenna stuff pressuring the developers to bring things to an end.

I'm (still) glad they went with the setting of Masquerade for this one, as while vampires tend to stick to their own cities and city politics, travel and knowledge of how things are going in other cities is all but nonexistent for vampires in Requiem. Hopefully travel will still be difficult to an extent, so that it can be sold as a service rather than conducted easily by any character. Clans like the Giovanni and Nosferatu have their own very special networks of agents who handle things like that, which will hopefully give them another kind of currency to barter away for something equally valuable. Though the game seems to be perma-night, there should still be risks associated with travel (Lupines, police, rival Princes) so that it's not something done every single night.

I'm thinking it should take a day real-time to travel between one city and another, just to simulate the time and difficulty that you have to go through by actually auto-piloting in EVE Online or the silly charging across continents on the back of a horse without stopping in games like World of WarCraft. Not quite sure what the role of player cars and things should take; if you go it alone without preparations - just drive off into the night - then, well... you DID wander off into the night with no preparations. That seems like a really good place to throw in a scare from a Lupine, or a rogue ghoul, or something that'll make players think twice about going it alone again.

Like migrating to a new sector of space in EVE Online, traveling to a new city doesn't suddenly get you a whole new network of contacts and allies - you're basically restarting, and given the competition for domain and herd in some cities, it means a struggle with the vampires who already occupied the place. Anything that increases the chance for hostile (the Sheriff policing the borders of his Prince's city against waves of immigrants) or cooperative (putting yourself into the debt of a native vampire for haven and feeding rights) interaction between players and player-groups is generally a good thing for an MMO.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 20, 2011, 06:51:22 pm
Like migrating to a new sector of space in EVE Online, traveling to a new city doesn't suddenly get you a whole new network of contacts and allies - you're basically restarting, and given the competition for domain and herd in some cities, it means a struggle with the vampires who already occupied the place.
For reference, in Eve, various alliances have different policies on defense of their territory.  The unofficial terms for the two most common Rules of Engagement are...

- NRDS: "Not Red, Don't shoot" which means that only "red" players (tagged as enemies by an alliance's leadership) are to be attacked

- NBSI: "Not Blue, Shoot It" which means that anybody and everybody who is NOT part of your organization (or a list of acknowledged allies) is to be killed on sight if/when they are spotted in your territory
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Mir on September 20, 2011, 07:02:55 pm
I do wish we could see a video (or even a transcript) of the q&a session, some peoples' explanation of the server structure make it sound like it's one server with many cities, others make sound more like multiple single-city servers, but where traveling between servers is more freely permitted than in your typical MMO.  It'd be nice to know exactly which one it is.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 20, 2011, 07:07:29 pm
They didn't precisely answer if/how travel between cities was going to happen.  The answer about multiple cities and how the cities are different was kind of broken, and interrupted on top of that.  It was one of the most unclear pieces of information we got, actually.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 20, 2011, 07:53:57 pm
by metro... obviously
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 20, 2011, 08:53:42 pm
Im guessing by airport or train. Probably airports because theyll want to use cities that arent adjacant to each other. Kinda hard to metro from L.A. to Paris. ;)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 20, 2011, 09:09:26 pm
ooh i was thinking about the thing from france to england...
anyways... you got me there...

but that would be a pain in the ass.. to much risk to catch the sun...
(yeah i know perma night.... but still!)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 20, 2011, 10:09:46 pm

ooh i was thinking about the thing from france to england...
anyways... you got me there...

but that would be a pain in the ass.. to much risk to catch the sun...
(yeah i know perma night.... but still!)

In practical terms, the movement between cities will probably be limited solely by some costs linked to travel, but for playability, it'll likely be only a short movie or animation showing the travel followed by instantly appearing at your target destination. Risks to catch the sun won't be in play.

If you read the OWOD books, there are some solutions mentioned for long range travel. A small private plane, piloted by ghouls, whilst the Kindred sleep in a light-proof box covered by thick blankets is the basic setup.

Simply flying at night cant hurt, either.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 21, 2011, 01:23:11 am
Simply flying at night cant hurt, either.
Assuming the character is so confident in their masquerading abilities that they would willingly subject themselves to the x-ray machine, random background checks and (worst of all) the possibility of being pulled aside for extended questioning, which might extend past sunrise.

Commercial airline travel is becoming less and less practical for Cainites.  All the more reason to make it into an "epic mount" where very wealthy characters can hire a charter jet or some other general aviation aircraft to bypass the majority of airport security.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 21, 2011, 01:28:37 am
Simply flying at night cant hurt, either.
Assuming the character is so confident in their masquerading abilities that they would willingly subject themselves to the x-ray machine, random background checks and (worst of all) the possibility of being pulled aside for extended questioning, which might extend past sunrise.

Commercial airline travel is becoming less and less practical for Cainites.  All the more reason to make it into an "epic mount" where very wealthy characters can hire a charter jet or some other general aviation aircraft to bypass the majority of airport security.

Err, COMMERCIAL FLIGHTS?!  :facepalm:

GTFO, n00b. Dontcha know, Embrace comes with it's own private jet ;)

Seriously, I assume any Kindred interested in travelling between cities has private accomodations. In game terms, REQUIRING a private plane as initial investment to travel the world would make perfect sense to me.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 21, 2011, 01:31:29 am
Yeah, I gotta agree with you on that last point.  It would be insanely risky to attempt that kind of travel without knowing for sure that you're controlling as many factors as possible.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 21, 2011, 02:25:03 am
gangrels have it easy with there protean flight form!

somehow i find per boat still a much more stylish way to travel...
planes are only something ventrue or toreador would take.... cause they are still so much concerned with time and appearance... what is a few days, in eternity... unless maybe they hide in a shipping crate...

i don't like the concept of planes.. though an airfield would make a pretty ingame area...
a place with lots of people even at those late hours... and not just the ones you find in clubs...

harbor-airfield-station... both big and small ones... all make nice spots :)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 21, 2011, 10:51:42 am
- NRDS: "Not Red, Don't shoot" which means that only "red" players (tagged as enemies by an alliance's leadership) are to be attacked

- NBSI: "Not Blue, Shoot It" which means that anybody and everybody who is NOT part of your organization (or a list of acknowledged allies) is to be killed on sight if/when they are spotted in your territory
On that note, I was also thinking in terms of economic competition. It's one thing to have your wallet full of ISK, but it's another thing to have friendly stations where you can store your ship, copy your clone, and do some secure trading and mining. All in all, I hope "NBSI" will be the modus operandi for the WODMMO. Vampires are inherently selfish and jealous creatures, and once the Sabbat comes out, players will want to do everything in their power to make sure new arrivals won't be a threat. The easiest way to do this is to make your city hostile to visiting vampires.


Seriously, I assume any Kindred interested in travelling between cities has private accomodations. In game terms, REQUIRING a private plane as initial investment to travel the world would make perfect sense to me.

They expanded traveling a lot in Star Wars Galaxies once they came out with "Jump to Lightspeed". Your personal ship, of whatever class, could be used instead of the commercial starports, which made it a worthwhile investment as soon as you bought it, because you didn't need to pay for tickets each time and wait around for the shuttle.
Same principle in the WODMMO, I'm hoping. Player vehicles, from motorcycles to limos to private jets, will be a significant investment, and allow characters to expand their horizons. One thing I hope they do change in the WODMMO, though, is the ability and practicality of selling travel arrangements. Even among the Ventrue, a private jet that can be prepped at a moment's notice is a pretty rare thing, so there's still a lot of borrowing and prestation going on. I'd like to see this done in the WODMMO, too, with respect to traveling between cities. Sure, you can take the risk on your motorcycle or chartered boat, but it should be a lot more cost-effective to simply contract another player who has "specced" in safe travel to make sure you arrive in one piece. There's a reason more vampires don't travel, and that reason is the Lupines.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 21, 2011, 06:45:10 pm
Having to be able to ask another player for a lift is neat, but "speccing in safe travel"? May be taking the concept a bit far; after all, if they're building multiple cities and that these dont end up clones of each other, theyll want players to travel the world and see those unique locales.

Also, giving some classes monopoly on transportation brings us back to the good olde EverQuest paragdim; /shout "5pp for SoW, 10pp for port to EC/KR/BB, 15pp for Kunark!" I can do without that :p Its why all the modern games have made travel fast&easy. Unlike other mechanics like permadeath, its not because nobody tried slow travel, but because everyone tried it and the players didn't like it; felt too much of a waste of time to meet up with friends, etc.

I think travel can be a good money-sink but ultimately, it should be fast and simple, within reason. Of course I'm talking about travel between and within major hubs here. I don't want a magic waypoint to the entrance of every dungeon, but there's a balance to find here.

In a game where mounts are cars and griffons are private planes, one thing thats worth pondering is how your vehicules are accessed. If you are in NY with your car, and take your private plane to Prague, should the car be accessible over there? Will players end up having to purshase a car in every city? What about Havens? Could be pretty nice to have Havens all over the world, but hella costly.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Mir on September 21, 2011, 07:42:19 pm
Simply flying at night cant hurt, either.
Assuming the character is so confident in their masquerading abilities that they would willingly subject themselves to the x-ray machine, random background checks and (worst of all) the possibility of being pulled aside for extended questioning, which might extend past sunrise.

Commercial airline travel is becoming less and less practical for Cainites.  All the more reason to make it into an "epic mount" where very wealthy characters can hire a charter jet or some other general aviation aircraft to bypass the majority of airport security.

Err, COMMERCIAL FLIGHTS?!  :facepalm:

GTFO, n00b. Dontcha know, Embrace comes with it's own private jet ;)

Seriously, I assume any Kindred interested in travelling between cities has private accomodations. In game terms, REQUIRING a private plane as initial investment to travel the world would make perfect sense to me.
Or, for the vamp on a budget, crate yourself up and call UPS.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nil on September 21, 2011, 08:19:14 pm
- NRDS: "Not Red, Don't shoot" which means that only "red" players (tagged as enemies by an alliance's leadership) are to be attacked

- NBSI: "Not Blue, Shoot It" which means that anybody and everybody who is NOT part of your organization (or a list of acknowledged allies) is to be killed on sight if/when they are spotted in your territory
On that note, I was also thinking in terms of economic competition. It's one thing to have your wallet full of ISK, but it's another thing to have friendly stations where you can store your ship, copy your clone, and do some secure trading and mining. All in all, I hope "NBSI" will be the modus operandi for the WODMMO. Vampires are inherently selfish and jealous creatures, and once the Sabbat comes out, players will want to do everything in their power to make sure new arrivals won't be a threat. The easiest way to do this is to make your city hostile to visiting vampires.

As much as I hope that too, I'd be surprised if it turns out that way. If climbing the vampire hierarchy is so much about currying supporters, we may be seeing older players fighting over new ones like used car salesmen. "Welcome aboard, here's fifty grand, a snazzy haven, twin redhead blood dolls, all you have to do is support my bid for primogen come election time". They'll have to work hard to combat this, either by making nub voices carry less weight at first, or resources so scarce that you don't want to share them with anyone not pulling twice their weight.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 21, 2011, 09:38:29 pm
Also, giving some classes monopoly on transportation brings us back to the good olde EverQuest paragdim; /shout "5pp for SoW, 10pp for port to EC/KR/BB, 15pp for Kunark!" I can do without that :p Its why all the modern games have made travel fast&easy.
There's nothing stopping player-characters from trekking to the next city on their own two feet if they don't want to pay or wait around for the "safe-travel spec" guy to come online (and for Clans like the Gangrel, who have Feral Claws, Earth Meld, and Shapeshifting, it's almost the easier thing to do), but humans and vampires haven't taken that mode of travel for at least a hundred years - closer to two-hundred in first-world countries that have train systems. We use cars and limos and planes because they are fast and easy - but we have to pay for them. Player-run transportation should be more efficient and safe than just some taxi you hailed on the street corner. You have player intelligence making the decisions, and can plan ahead.

Imagine the following situation: there's a growing threat of Lupines in the tract of woods south of town. Now, the vampires know this, because they have things like Gangrel scouts and Auspex and a big paranoid streak when it comes to werewolves. But Joe Schmoe the taxi driver (an NPC) doesn't know jack shizzle about the World of Darkness, so when some pale guy asks him for a ride to the next city over, he's going to go straight through Lupine territory to get there. That is not a good position for your player-character.
Any player can make the decision to take a circuitous route to the east or west and thereby eliminate the problem. But since you're borrowing their car/limosuine/airplane (which I hope will cost some sort of upkeep), having them scout out safe routes (you hope), and putting in security measures, you better believe they're going to make you pay for it. (Still, as I'm sure Valamyr will be pointing out, there's nothing stopping a friend from doing a favor for a friend, but I really, really hope that in a game based on the World of Darkness, owing someone a favor has some meaning.) It's the same principle as contracting another player to move cargo for you in EVE Online, only in this case the cargo is much, much, much more valuable that a collapsed ship - it's your player-character!

Don't worry about one "class" having a monopoly on travel over another. That's not the right way of thinking about Vampire: The Masquerade, even if it's a good entry point for newbie players to wrap their heads around. "Speccing" is something any character can do, since they all possess the same nine Attributes, thirty Abilities, and hopefully some Backgrounds. The advantages will come in the Disciplines, and each Clan has their own way of capitalizing on different travel methods.
Gangrel can go as bodyguards and guides if you need to leave right now and stay low on the radar.
Nosferatu can obviously guarantee the stealthy approach, between Obfuscate and their knowledge of the underground.
Ventrue, Toreador, Giovanni, and all the other social Clans either have Backgrounds or can Dominate/Presence somebody into doing it for them.
Even a Brujah can loan somebody his bike, or move among a convoy of biker gangs.
And the best part is is that this is only playing on the basic stereotypes of each Clan. There's nothing stopping a Gangrel from being able to rent out his limosuine to a Toreador if he "specs" the right way, with dots in Finance, Resources, etc.

As I've posted earlier in this thread, there should be absolutely nothing stopping player-characters from being able to travel through and among cities pretty much at-will. See the above about cars, taxis, and subways. There's also always Mir's option. However, those are unsecured, mass-transit systems, and the cost reflects this. Depending on how physical the game gets, this could be something along the lines of a slow cargo hauler with two rocket mounts moving through 0.1-sec space. (I.e., a Toreador with a "social spec" moving through Anarch territory in the dead of night when there are no witnesses around.) Just like in the "real" World of Darkness, vampires want to get where they're going and arrive there in one piece. Player-run transportation offers a greater guarantee of this, for an associated cost.

As much as I hope that too, I'd be surprised if it turns out that way. If climbing the vampire hierarchy is so much about currying supporters, we may be seeing older players fighting over new ones like used car salesmen. "Welcome aboard, here's fifty grand, a snazzy haven, twin redhead blood dolls, all you have to do is support my bid for primogen come election time". They'll have to work hard to combat this, either by making nub voices carry less weight at first, or resources so scarce that you don't want to share them with anyone not pulling twice their weight.
I think either approach is just as likely, though as I said I'd prefer the more hostile one. "Primogen" means nothing to the vampires in the next city over, who have a different prince, a different government, and sure as hell primogen of their own, who don't want their "poor cousin" moving in on their territory. I expect inter-city competition to become extremely fierce on whatever level - political, financial, social, or physical. New players may end up like you predict, but the ones with even a little power and political clout should be seen as a threat - they may be a threat you want on your side, but a threat nonetheless.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 21, 2011, 10:35:23 pm
we can only hope for such a versatile game (on transportation methods, and player interaction)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 21, 2011, 10:49:07 pm
Push the envelope! Push the envelope!
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nigama on September 22, 2011, 01:32:55 am
I recall hearing about CoT or some game that had an in game taxi service created by players.  I love that kind of thing, anything player driven really, and would hope to see a lot of player "enterprises" in game.

Nigama
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: VampireBill on September 22, 2011, 02:18:51 am
I actually liked the concept of getting wizards and druids to teleport you somewhere or give you SoW in EQ1. It forced "face-to-face" interaction with other players, and staging areas around druid rings or wizzy spires where you could run up and ask a waiting high level player for some buffs. The prices were never prohibitive (in my experience), and casters had to actually buy their spells, so it helped them raise money. In EQ2, all you had to do was go to a dock and click your destination and you were there, which, along with server-wide channels, and a few other world-shrinking "user-friendly" changes, completely changed the dynamics of player interaction, and for me, killed a ton of the immersion and community feeling.
Maybe I'm just waxing poetic about the glory days of my first MMO experience, but I've never felt as *involved* in an MMO's world/server since.

Now how do you bring that back while still making it competitive in a casual-gamer world? I... am not sure, haha.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 22, 2011, 05:40:43 am
Quote
There's nothing stopping player-characters from trekking to the next city on their own two feet if they don't want to pay or wait around for the "safe-travel spec" guy to come online (and for Clans like the Gangrel, who have Feral Claws, Earth Meld, and Shapeshifting, it's almost the easier thing to do), but humans and vampires haven't taken that mode of travel for at least a hundred years - closer to two-hundred in first-world countries that have train systems. We use cars and limos and planes because they are fast and easy - but we have to pay for them. Player-run transportation should be more efficient and safe than just some taxi you hailed on the street corner.

Hey I dont disagree with that, just all the rest :)

Transportation should require funding and investment in transportation systems should pay off in the long run. But every player should be able to attain self-sufficient and rapid means of going to the various hubs in the game with fair ease and complete safety once his character is established.

Of course as you seem to think transportation is too easy in most modern MMOs, we're probably going to have to add this on the pile of things we don't totally agree on. But I'm fairly sure they'll want to keep WOD approachable and that means being able to hook up with your friends easily.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 22, 2011, 05:56:48 am
What I'm saying is that transportation shouldn't be any easier for vampires than it "actually" is. If we don't play up the fact that these are blood-drinking, sun-burning, Discipline-wielding undead monsters of the night, then this game may as well not be about blood-drinking, sun-burning, etc, vampires. It'll be a giant Sims game that you have to pay a subscription for. Vampires do things in different ways as a natural consequence of their existence, including how they travel. The political and social climate is drastically different than normally seen in the U.S. or other countries - vampires are still feudal to a large extent, and if one vampire can claim power over another by controlling travel, they'll do it. The fact that vampires exist in the modern world, with all its conveniences like cars and planes, doesn't change the fact that they're vampires.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 22, 2011, 06:17:30 am
Yeah, I'm sure they'll flavor things up fine.

See this is the big difference I think between our views: we both want a kickass game, but we approach its design by totally opposite points.

You take the P&P game as a sacro-sanct base for everything. I love Vampire, but I see this project primarily about designing a MMORPG. I think about every feature in terms of feasibility, marketability, fun-factor, accessibility and how it's going to play out on this platform. Flavor and themes are amazing and I want to add alot to WOD to make it as true, lore-wise, as possible to the books, but systems will have to take precedence here and there.

More to the point: Its easy to make travel difficult in PNP because Everyone that matters is sitting around your table, drinking your beer and eating your popcorn. Youre all together by definition. This is exactly like the daylight issue: its easy to say "We had to DEAL with DAYLIGHT in PNP!!!" Nope, you didnt. Your ST fast-forwarded the game to twilight every single time you had to sleep, except if it was to tell you something was attacking you at noon. This is why a "real" daylight system would not have passed the feasibility and accessibility tests, nevermind fun. And its the same thing with complex, dangerous or SLOW travel systems.

Travel can have a cost associated. It can take a bit of time. It can have theme-related factors attached such as making you pay extra for sun-proofing or demand Allies (Transportation) dots to secure some stuff. All this is good mechanics because it allows the game to force you to play to earn access to the ultimate forms of transportation (the sun-shielded private plane with room for your sport car that teleports you to Moscow in a blink). What we cant have, IMO, is a system that makes travel prohibitively difficult for most of the playerbase. That may be true to lore, but its a huge accessibility-killer and several MMOs have proven players were turned off big time by numerous past attempts at slow travel; 20 minutes boat rides got the thumbdown 10 years ago in this industry, so that gives you a general idea of the low patience threshold we can expect for complications. That's why the devs will have to access some compromises there.

I know you'd rather just cut off a large segment of potential players than compromise your vision, but for debate to be meaningful it has to at least acknowledge that as a for-profit company, CCP will NOT knowingly sacrifice one sale, except if it's to ensure more long term sales. And I can't blame them at all. And by the way, I'd pay for a good Vampire-themed Sims game ;)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 22, 2011, 06:28:03 am
As far as I'm aware, World of WarCraft still uses travel that takes time - bat/griffon rides, player mounts, even boats and zepplins to an extent - and that's still the most popular MMO out there. EVE Online makes you travel everywhere yourself, through every star system along the way, and that at least proves that such a mechanic won't kill a game. (Personally, I think EVE Online hasn't achieved the numbers of WoW for entirely different reasons than the travel system.)

Imagine a game, much like the WODMMO, that had all the options of World of WarCraft and EVE Online and then even more options. Transportation of, for, and by the players. Transportation can be a market that gives players options not found in what amounts to the NPC/PvE aspect of the game. Giving players control over their own destinations - and in the World of Darkness, anybody who can afford the price you put on controlling their destinations for them - can only improve the player networking and interaction that the developers and players (who presumably play an MMORPG for the multiplayer) want to see available in the game. I can't honestly see how player-run transportation will damage the game - if all else fails, there will still be NPC/PvE transportation available. It just opens up a whole other field of interaction that you don't see in most other games.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 22, 2011, 06:36:22 am
Oh I agree with all this. Maybe I imagined a disagreement where there was none. If you're okay with how travel works in EVE and WoW, I don't forsee much problem on this front.

As I said, costs and a little time are totally fine. In fact theyre critical to have the game world "Feel" big.

Its just that when you wrote travel should be as difficult in game as it would be for the P&P Vampires, I imagined you meant WoW or EVE-like levels of difficulty for travel were unacceptable from your point of view, and that it should be much harder. Maybe my view's colored by the fact that my STs were all FAIRLY hardass about travel in P&P. I literally had a private plane grounded on a remote island by MIGs and attacked by Werewolves the second it hit the ground once :D Good times.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 22, 2011, 06:47:37 am
I largely foresee player-run transportation being conducted between cities. Within one city, there should be a plethora of NPC/environmental ways to travel. Player-run transportation should be the equivalent of a server transfer in another game - takes a while, is difficult, is expensive, and has some security risk (like not arriving with all the items you left with). However, since this game is being sold as one shard, then these risks can have in-game elements, like the Lupines I keep harping on, or the "threat" of sunlight, or somebody else's ghouled bodyguards suddenly turning around and holding you for ransom.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 22, 2011, 06:55:46 am
I largely foresee player-run transportation being conducted between cities. Within one city, there should be a plethora of NPC/environmental ways to travel. Player-run transportation should be the equivalent of a server transfer in another game - takes a while, is difficult, is expensive, and has some security risk (like not arriving with all the items you left with). However, since this game is being sold as one shard, then these risks can have in-game elements, like the Lupines I keep harping on, or the "threat" of sunlight, or somebody else's ghouled bodyguards suddenly turning around and holding you for ransom.

I forsee inter-city transportation being more along the lines of getting from Thunderbluff to Undercity, which is a far cry from server transfer, but I could see some merit in a more 'strict' interpretation of urban guidelines. It depends on many factors, the first of them being how often the game expects you to do it and how large and complete the cities actually are.

If you need to travel far and wide to grow to your full potential, then travel has to be easier. If every other quest sends you to another obscure locale to dig for ancient artifacts of Babylonian lore, travel has to be easier. If every city is so self-contained that you can totally live your entire unlife there without travels and its all about hooking up with friends, then a slightly higher difficulty threshold becomes acceptable. From my experience they wont want to spend the ressources on making the last case scenario a possibility, but I may be wrong. Ultimately, we don't want to make things too painful on people wanting to play with friends in a city far away. There's a middle-ground I'm sure they'll manage to strike here. There are far more touchy issues to tackle.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 22, 2011, 06:45:19 pm
Now that what cities are is clearer (clones of each other, basically linked shards, with each one logically self-sufficient in all things), my position on inter-city travel changes considerably.

Since you no longer need to move to play the game but solely to be with your friends or find more or less populated cities, the ease of travel can be quite a bit different. It can be much harder, like Rick suggests. But then again you do want people to join their friends easily, so perhaps one "easy" move should be allowed per X period of time, and all subsequent attempts at changing your city would be a substantial investment, in order to ensure regional identities arise and Clans tend to stick to one city.

You were right on this one, Rick. I guess you had a better grasp than I of what they were going for with their multi-system. I was thinking of cities as pieces of a puzzle, parts of the world to be explored as part of normal gameplay (with low level cities and high level cities) whereas it turns out they're basically linked clones of each others, practically shards. The legitimate needs for travel plummets in this scenario, and an higher in-game cost makes more sense.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on September 22, 2011, 07:19:07 pm
I'd like to reiterate the common rhetoric that Chris gave at the beginning of the panel: Information given here is the current state of affairs and no way reflects the completed product; as well as are subject to change at any time.

I'd also like to state that it was nice seeing Heynir take notes himself on everything that was asked and what reactions the crowd (of about 50 or so) at the panel had. Every time they were asked a question, he was writing something, as well as the reactions of the crowd. I'd like to think specifically the panel was a focus group.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 22, 2011, 07:50:33 pm
in that case... we should give them some more of our notes ^^ :chinscratch:
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 25, 2011, 06:55:34 am
I think it would be funny/cool if the developers placed the cities in Iceland or Sweden or Denmark or someplace. It would at least explain the perma-night.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 25, 2011, 07:37:56 am
I think it would be funny/cool if the developers placed the cities in Iceland or Sweden or Denmark or someplace. It would at least explain the perma-night.

Whats there to explain about the permanight? It makes perfect sense. Youre assumed to be sleeping away whenever it's not nighttime. Its not like you could see the day at all without dying.

Permanight will only be an issue if they add non-Kindred supers later on. At that point, I assume they'll throw in instanced daylight for them at the very least or some such, if it happens at all. In a Kindred-centric game, permanight doesn't need to be explained at all, it just makes sense.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 25, 2011, 07:40:41 am
That was just a longitude joke...

EDIT
Nope, nevermind, Valamyr's right. I always thought longitude was the vertical degree measurement, but apparently it's not.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 25, 2011, 08:53:10 am
That was just a longitude joke...

I still thought it was worth pointing out that there's nothing that should break immersion in a permanight setting as long as we're all Kindred :)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 25, 2011, 12:50:41 pm
to bad we all start as human :facepalm:
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: PGM1961 on September 25, 2011, 01:48:12 pm
That whole 'starting as human' had better not last longer than one game session, or I will be annoyed.  Even in VtM: Redemption, Christof was Embraced after one Quest in the mines.

The game is about how much humanity you can keep in your vampire, not how much humanity you can keep in your human.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 25, 2011, 03:55:52 pm
i think they already said, that you can remain human indefinitely... as the embrace will never be enforced....
this kinda sucks on the ability to give your vamp a real back ground...
but then again... that would make it very imbalanced anyways.. so its good this way...
this way you can "spec" to the being you want to be ... later :)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: PGM1961 on September 25, 2011, 06:41:38 pm
Yes, but I don't want to remain human indefinitely... I want to be Embraced quickly, so I can begin playing the vampire game I'll be paying money for.  If you are Embraced by PCs (as was hinted), then how long will that take to find someone to Embrace you?
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 25, 2011, 06:53:05 pm
don't worry i will be giving you the blood of malkov ASAP!
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Porphyria on September 25, 2011, 07:16:14 pm
Yes, but I don't want to remain human indefinitely... I want to be Embraced quickly, so I can begin playing the vampire game I'll be paying money for.  If you are Embraced by PCs (as was hinted), then how long will that take to find someone to Embrace you?

Um, not very long since we all know each other. And I hear Rick gets around. :P

But really, I wouldn't mind being human for a little while to build up the back-story of who my character is. What's wrong with roleplaying a human before the embrace? Just another aspect of the game to enjoy. You can always build a relationship with a vampire you don't know is a vampire. Not everyone has to get ganked in a gas station and wake up undead. (Oh yeah, Sabbat aren't in at launch) Maybe it's better to have Kindred know who you were as a human.

So you work the night shift. Big deal.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on September 25, 2011, 07:25:01 pm
I think I might have a human character that stays human just to be human forever for the lulz. See how long I can survive. Get some REAL survival horror going on.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 25, 2011, 07:28:28 pm
I think I might have a human character that stays human just to be human forever for the lulz. See how long I can survive. Get some REAL survival horror going on.

Id like that too. But despite what they said at the Grand Masq, whether all deaths will truly be permadeath for mortals is something Id say is very still up in the air, because that's the kind of decision that tends to get changed somewhere in the development process.

I gave it some thought, and I believe if even 5% of the playerbase would like to play humans and ghouls, they'll howl to the moon about this and CCP will make their death works like Vampires'.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 25, 2011, 07:34:07 pm
wakes up in the hospital from a coma...
a FUCK not again!
i FUCKING hate shotguns!

least i guess i would go for coma or something instead of torpor...
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 25, 2011, 11:27:05 pm
The game is about how much humanity you can keep in your vampire, not how much humanity you can keep in your human.
Quoted for truth.

Um, not very long since we all know each other. And I hear Rick gets around. :P
Sorry, but Rick only goes for the blonde/brunette/redhead triumvirate, and not too many females on this forum have expressed an interest in being Gangrel.

I'm relatively certain that there will be SOME NPCs who are capable of granting the Embrace - otherwise I'd hope the developers play characters for the "first generation" of in-game vampires to Embrace the first actual players. If they want to keep at all true to the mystery and conspiracy of the setting, mortals can't go around advertising "WTB Gangrel Embrace".
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 26, 2011, 02:30:57 am
Quote
Sorry, but Rick only goes for the blonde/brunette/redhead triumvirate, and not too many females on this forum have expressed an interest in being Gangrel.

I'm relatively certain that there will be SOME NPCs who are capable of granting the Embrace - otherwise I'd hope the developers play characters for the "first generation" of in-game vampires to Embrace the first actual players. If they want to keep at all true to the mystery and conspiracy of the setting, mortals can't go around advertising "WTB Gangrel Embrace".

Well I dont truly disagree, this is likely to end up this way. However its not what they said last weekend.

The word from TGM was that all players would have a PC Sire, except the very few first players (probably either beta or pre-order players) who would start as Vampires and then be tasked by embracing the newcomers. It sounds certain to be a bit of a logistical nightmare, will DEFINITELY make most broadcast for the clan they want to embrace them, and plenty of other problems, so I think they may well change their minds on this.

This element like a bunch of others lead me to think they've not thought everything out quite well yet. Its a bit disapointing after so many years in development, but hey. What's five more years? :p
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Porphyria on September 26, 2011, 03:27:53 am

Sorry, but Rick only goes for the blonde/brunette/redhead triumvirate, and not too many females on this forum have expressed an interest in being Gangrel.

Well they said at the GM that when you get embraced you don't have to take the PC's clan, you just build what you want anyway. (Is that not right?) So I guess you would be like Rick Gentle Gangrel Gigolo....
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 26, 2011, 03:29:42 am
Given some of the crowds we can expect to have some interest in the WODMMO, that doesn't sound like a bad idea to make some money...
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on September 26, 2011, 06:24:37 am
Quote
Sorry, but Rick only goes for the blonde/brunette/redhead triumvirate, and not too many females on this forum have expressed an interest in being Gangrel.

I'm relatively certain that there will be SOME NPCs who are capable of granting the Embrace - otherwise I'd hope the developers play characters for the "first generation" of in-game vampires to Embrace the first actual players. If they want to keep at all true to the mystery and conspiracy of the setting, mortals can't go around advertising "WTB Gangrel Embrace".

Well I dont truly disagree, this is likely to end up this way. However its not what they said last weekend.

The word from TGM was that all players would have a PC Sire, except the very few first players (probably either beta or pre-order players) who would start as Vampires and then be tasked by embracing the newcomers. It sounds certain to be a bit of a logistical nightmare, will DEFINITELY make most broadcast for the clan they want to embrace them, and plenty of other problems, so I think they may well change their minds on this.

This element like a bunch of others lead me to think they've not thought everything out quite well yet. Its a bit disapointing after so many years in development, but hey. What's five more years? :p

Without the major downside of being Vampire (Sunlight) most players will want to play vampires and would see absolutely no advantage to playing human.

Possible Solutions :
 1) I would rather they at least include daytime as a separate channel/instance that vampires are partly restricted from while allowing humans to move freely.
Anyway such instances are probably used to simulate Astral Plane and Umbra etc.
Moving around in the city after all is also something strategic I expect. having Daylight as a separate Channel will allow mortals to stage ambush (locate to somewhere in the Daylight Instance and then switch to the Night Channel to get the drop on the enemy.)

2)Allow Mortals to Perma-kill Vampires (As in its very unlikely that a vampire will lose to a human so lets make it permanent if it does happen) That might also help to keep vampires from parading themselves and going on a marketing spree.
As well as allow Hunters (mortals who hunt vampires) some incentives.

3) Competition : Why would I want more people to become Vampires when they are more useful as Blood Addicts, hopeful to get the embrace one night?

4)To make playing mortals more interesting, give them access to content they logically won't be able to unlock as Vampires.

This is relevant to a city in the sense that it maintains the conflict of masquerade that way (as opposed to masquerade just among-st NPCs) and would probably make players want to keep hush hush about the vampirism or sell each-other out in a risky maneuver.
After all Paranoia about mortals is expected of vampires as more than just an RP skit.



Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nigama on September 26, 2011, 01:35:54 pm
Well they said at the GM that when you get embraced you don't have to take the PC's clan, you just build what you want anyway. (Is that not right?)

As far as I understand it, that is *not* right.  From what I understand you will be able to have the choice of clan (so a Ventrue who wanders by can't bite you because you've chosen Gangrel, maybe), but I would assume post bite (from a Gangrel, in this case) you'll suffer from clan weakness and have a better time (less xp) of learning in clan disciplines than out of clan ones.


@ Val -  My gut reaction is that their response would be "This is a game about Vampire, right now."  I think humans are only in it as player characters because they want to tell the prelude to becoming a vampire.  It helps flesh out the players' characters backgrounds, gets the character attached to their mortal and mortal life, and by setting the scene as normal it gives them a lot of room to shock you with the horror coming down the line.  That's not to say that they won't expand human capabilities down the line, and I'm sure they'll give humans options given that players will be able to play and stay humans, but they also implied humans would suffer permadeath... so... yeah.  I don't expect to see all the fuzzy stuff you mentioned in your last post for mortals at launch.  I think Vampires are more than enough for them right now.  I would love to be surprised tho!

Nigama
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on September 26, 2011, 06:49:40 pm
No.

The choice is whether to accept the embrace or not. If a Gangrel walks up and "bites" you, you can either become a Gangrel or stay human. To become a Ventrue you'd have to find a Ventrue to embrace you.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nigama on September 27, 2011, 04:45:20 am
No.

The choice is whether to accept the embrace or not. If a Gangrel walks up and "bites" you, you can either become a Gangrel or stay human.

Interesting assumptions.  I see mine diverged a bit from yours.  I see that system as being "immersion breaking."  If a gangrel comes up to me and drains me dry, and wants to give me their blood back, it seems strange that I can resist at that point.  Makes more sense to me to not even let that happen.  Maybe a compromise of the two would be that the Kindred in question can only take two (or three) vitae from the mortal (so as not to kill).. but then what if another Kindred comes along, also of the wrong clan..  more blood drains should kill that mortal permanently.  So I see the toggle option as most likely, so that the process described above can't even begin.

Although, from what we know, mortals are killable.. so maybe that's an option.

 
Quote
To become a Ventrue you'd have to find a Ventrue to embrace you.

Exactly so.

Nigama
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Mir on September 27, 2011, 06:05:07 am
The way I've been picturing it working is something like mortal characters having a UI menu where they select which clans they're willing to be embraced by.  Vampires who aren't one of the selected clans simply won't be able to initiate an embrace on the mortal; those of the proper clan will be able to, and perhaps have it so vampires see an icon over a person's head if they can be embraced by that vampire.  Seems like the most efficient way to both prevent unwanted embraces, and facilitate people becoming the type of vampire they want to be.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 27, 2011, 06:56:29 am

Without the major downside of being Vampire (Sunlight) most players will want to play vampires and would see absolutely no advantage to playing human.


As they should IMO, its a game about Vampires and other supernatural entities. Mortals and ghouls should be available at most for RP reasons.

IMO daylight "weakness" has ALWAYS been a RP thing and nothing more. Did you ever had a ST make you sit there awhile waiting for twilight or something? :p

I never shared your fascination for a day/night cycle obviously. IMO what they're building is the closest it gets to a true PnP experience. Daylight has never been a true weakness for Kindred in Vtm/Vtr, just a RP one. Fire and the need for blood are real weaknesses, because STs cant just say "Okay its next evening, what do you do?". And theyll be in game just fine.

People will choose to play ghouls for RP value, and mortals for the same reason. I'm totally okay with 95%+ picking true supers, because thats obviously whats at the core of the game.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on September 27, 2011, 09:16:57 am

As they should IMO, its a game about Vampires and other supernatural entities. Mortals and ghouls should be available at most for RP reasons.

IMO daylight "weakness" has ALWAYS been a RP thing and nothing more. Did you ever had a ST make you sit there awhile waiting for twilight or something? :p

I don't know if you ever actually RPed VTM(sounds to me like you didn't) but yes, some STs use the coming of daylight as a storytelling tool, an executioner for vampires to fear or even that time when vampires for all their power are helpless.
What you say, Its like saying that Nuclear Warheads are unimportant in the cold war...

Mortals and Ghouls are very much a part of the game and the game is also about them in a sense (for example Ghouls:Fatal Addiction).

The Storyteller never asks players to wait but they may run scenes that take place in daylight and work them into the RP.

Also if the game was not at all about mortals there wouldn't have been an emphasis on the transition from mortal to Vampire and Vampire relations with Mortal society, this is more than a matter of opinion mind you.(unless of course you go by VTMB where no one really cares who the protagonist was in life)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 27, 2011, 08:02:41 pm
Quote
I don't know if you ever actually RPed VTM(sounds to me like you didn't)

You know, I stopped reading there. You know damn well I did, and I'll be more interested in your arguments when you can make them without being an ass in the process to whowever you disagree with.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 27, 2011, 10:39:47 pm
oooh i sense 2 great potential target for the level 1 discipline of dementation...
hope this cock fight will result in fountain of blood, as i am the 3th dog!
WOOF!
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on September 27, 2011, 11:26:49 pm
Quote
I don't know if you ever actually RPed VTM(sounds to me like you didn't)

You know, I stopped reading there. You know damn well I did, and I'll be more interested in your arguments when you can make them without being an ass in the process to whowever you disagree with.

I know damn well you did? and how would I know that? by your insistence that mortals are irrelevant and that any fascination on playing mortals is misplaced?
I don't know if you noticed but you were the one who opened the door for this kind of discussion, so yes it made me wonder if you actually know or were involved with playing the PnP game, if you want to be offended by this that is entirely your choice because I don't think I have said anything offensive there or at least not anymore offensive than anything you have written...
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 28, 2011, 12:49:25 am
Quote
I don't know if you ever actually RPed VTM(sounds to me like you didn't)

You know, I stopped reading there. You know damn well I did, and I'll be more interested in your arguments when you can make them without being an ass in the process to whowever you disagree with.

I know damn well you did? and how would I know that? by your insistence that mortals are irrelevant and that any fascination on playing mortals is misplaced?
I don't know if you noticed but you were the one who opened the door for this kind of discussion, so yes it made me wonder if you actually know or were involved with playing the PnP game, if you want to be offended by this that is entirely your choice because I don't think I have said anything offensive there or at least not anymore offensive than anything you have written...

Whether I played the game did not seem like a genuine question to me, it seemed like a snide comment. I often talked about the various games I've played in, and debated at length the differences between PnP and MMOs these last few years. We've talked about my positions and experiences regarding all this so much in the permanight threads that I thought you would remember, but I may be wrong there. So just to clarify, I have 12 years of experience with MMOs and 15 with Vampire PnP, and I've LARPd a bit too.

Its precisely because my experience of both MMOs and PnP are extensive that I dont have a "pure PNP" view of everything. I'm thinking about this project as a MMO based on Vampire, not a pure port of the Vampire experience to a MMO platform, because I consider that impractical for the platform. Permanight was never in doubt to me, and I still believe that the "weakness to sunlight" is primarily a roleplay point in PnP. One with potential for ST story hooks, but still not something that came up in actual gameplay all that much beyond its huge RP implications. I therefore dont feel we are losing much, because the RP potential of the sunlight weakness is still there (its implied), and 99% of the actual gameplay always happened at night anyway.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nanaloma on September 28, 2011, 01:30:23 am
Oops; my bad; must have logged into the wrong site.  Thought this was Planet Vampire. 
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 28, 2011, 04:35:44 am
Heh.  Rad, be nice.  Val, relax.  Or I'll turn you both into furniture within 30 minutes of the Sabbat becoming player characters.  :cometome:

"You probably thought that these two player characters were alive.  Well they're not.  They're undead armchairs."
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 28, 2011, 05:48:57 am
On that note, since the Sabbat isn't going to be in at launch, is there going to be a sort of "Anarch-friendly" zone in the city, since technically - very technically - the Anarchs are part of the Camarilla, and exist only at their sufferance? I'm kind of torn between starting a Sabbat guild-analogue and starting an Anarch guild-analogue, now.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 28, 2011, 05:52:42 am
Good question.  As I implied in another thread, I expect to lose my first 20 Cainite characters to perma-death in an attempt to establish a stable group of "perma-bloodhunted" low-humanity characters.  It won't be an exact analogue of the Sabbat heirarchy, but I think it will be a good start towards establishing a group whose player interactions and mutual fear/respect are the be-all, end-all of night-to-night unlife.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 28, 2011, 05:54:07 am
But... but... What about the Vinculum??
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 28, 2011, 06:01:25 am
On that note, since the Sabbat isn't going to be in at launch, is there going to be a sort of "Anarch-friendly" zone in the city, since technically - very technically - the Anarchs are part of the Camarilla, and exist only at their sufferance? I'm kind of torn between starting a Sabbat guild-analogue and starting an Anarch guild-analogue, now.

The Sabbat wont be in as playable characters but theyll be in as a faction..

Oh, I get it. You want to know if players will be able to play as Anarchs? Thats a good question and I'd tend to assume Yes. They dont have their own clans so its perfectly easy to have them as a political alternative.

Now kiss my cape, Damsel. ;)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 28, 2011, 06:03:15 am
Good question.  As I implied in another thread, I expect to lose my first 20 Cainite characters to perma-death in an attempt to establish a stable group of "perma-bloodhunted" low-humanity characters.  It won't be an exact analogue of the Sabbat heirarchy, but I think it will be a good start towards establishing a group whose player interactions and mutual fear/respect are the be-all, end-all of night-to-night unlife.

This is the very definition of crazyness. No, seriously. I just called the press, they're recalling the Merriam-Websters to update.

Good luck :D
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 28, 2011, 06:06:41 am
But... but... What about the Vinculum??

The Vinculum is something Im real interested in. I HOPE its in, with solid mechanical effects to back it up. Then again its the kind of feature thats hard to enforce, because no mechanic could truly capture how you feel about someone you drank from, assuming (as always) that most players will NOT be making any attempt to roleplay and will in fact do everything they can to circumvent restrictions.

Basically, I'm having a hard time reconciliating the Vinculum with what CCP calls "Emergent roleplaying", where you roleplay solely because your interests coincide with your character's. But they're paid to be more creative than I am, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I had AMAZING stories and games that really came to life because of well-played Vincula. Its a big deal to me, and I think it CAN work in a MMO with the right mechanics.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 28, 2011, 12:39:10 pm
vinculum makes it easier to dominate+presence effects to kick in...
it would be interesting... in selling blood on the market... infusing it with a little of your own vitae...
*MUHAHAHAHAHA*
wait... why do i always tell my evil plans to takeover the world...



there is no such thing as a topic...
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on September 28, 2011, 06:15:59 pm
This is the very definition of crazyness. No, seriously. I just called the press, they're recalling the Merriam-Websters to update.
Eve did it!  The plethora of pirate (player character) organizations are basically "kill on sight" to nearly all NPCs, and any player can attack them at any place, any time.  Because of this, they're relegated to the darker corners of low security space, in a limbo between Empire and the expanses of 0.0 space.  There is no game mechanic that forces them to work together, nor is there a mechanic that prevents them from attacking one another for no reason.  They do it out of mutual interest, and for survival.  Of course, the reason they got that way in the first place was through deliberate, sustained aggression against the "civilized" residents.  That is...they chose to be pirates, then put a fair amount of effort into making it happen.

The real question is...could such a system still work once perma-death enters the equation?
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on September 28, 2011, 07:03:49 pm
We can always form a group ;3 I'd love to play a redlisted kindred who is on there for no other reason than association.


Oh that paranoia.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 28, 2011, 07:09:05 pm
this entirely depends on how its implemented...
if strict by the book
if you just kill to loot...your humanity would not fall below 2...
now if your a ganker... your humanity is 1
if you continue doing that... and spam/scam/cheat/do necrophilia  (hideously) your humanity =0
...
I think they could copy this part 100% from the p&p rules... (I hear rick cheer)
if humanity =0 ... your character becomes controlled by the beast.... and you lose your character... (permadeath) (and possible ban)
i also would like it that if your humanity is 1... you are safe to attack by all... and also suffer permadeath if you die...
and if humanity =2 your character is safe to attack by all... but no permadeath
with the exception of course that if your username=_username you  also perma die, and you go to jail, without getting the 20k!
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 28, 2011, 09:13:14 pm
I don't believe characters who have 0-1 Humanity and suffer perma-death should be banned. Certainly not their players' accounts. As _username represents, there are those people who want to play out a low-Humanity character and be on everybody's hit-list. A player's account should only be banned if they are violating the Terms of Agreement, hacking, ruining the game for everybody else beyond ganking, etc. As long as they're not actually breaking the rules or making themselves a hindrance to other players' lives, they shouldn't be banned, just censored in-game with in-game mechanics, which they've already said we'll most likely be seeing.

Valamyr, triple post for the loss.

Humanity 3 or below is already borderline being lost to the Beast. At Humanity 4, you're killing people because you feel like it ("impassioned crime"), and at that point it takes a lot to recover, since in Masquerade, characters begin testing against the Beast (Conscience and Willpower rolls), and in Requiem, you're down to three dice to resist further degeneration, and just above 2 dice - any further slips, and you're going to have to be very, very lucky. Lots of elders who still practice Humanity are 3-4-5, but that range is actually pretty dang broad in what counts as a further violation. It's the difference between killing people because they're an immediate threat to your existence, and killing people because you want them to die.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on September 28, 2011, 10:36:30 pm
using morality from V20
Quote
4    Impassioned violation  (manslaughter, killing a vessel in frenzy)

3    Planned violation (outright murder, savored exsanguination)
2    Casual violation (thoughtless killing, feeding past satiation)
1    Utter perversion or heinous acts
i translated 2 as "ganking" with what i meant is spawn killing...
or for instance keep killing the same weaker player over and over again (withing a time frame)
that is effectively ruining the game...  (and only said permadeath here...)
i translated 1 as keep on doing that, and any of the other game breakers, like cheating, scamming(some scamming should obviously be considered in character.. but there are limits :P), spamming... etc... those would result in permadeath and a possible ban...

humanity 4 impassioned crime... is more that you kill a lover because she betrayed you... not just because you wanna test out your new shotgun...
and humanity lvl 3 is everything _username asked for...  planned killing... and murdering people cause "Arrrr your jack the pirate, and you've got booty"
... gotta admit that is already kinda close to lvl 2... but... they can change it a little :P

Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 29, 2011, 03:10:04 am
Hmmm... One of the ways they can punish spammers and things is to set their characters' Humanity to 1, thus enabling perma-death on them and allowing other player-characters to hunt them. If they don't shape up and actually start playing the game to raise their Humanity, they'll be perma-dead pretty soon. If they still don't get the hint, then the account can be banned.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 29, 2011, 04:25:00 am
Banning accounts should be totally unrelated to the humanity system. The former is a legal matter for violations of the terms of service, the latter is a gameplay mechanic. Doesnt make sense to tie them at all.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 29, 2011, 04:28:53 am
You're saying you wouldn't like the chance to get back at all the gold spammers and other idiots? It's better for the spammer, because they get a warning instead of a flat ban, and it's better for the rest of the community, because we get to shut them up personally, possibly diablerize them, and give them an in-game punishment for their in-game asshatery.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 29, 2011, 04:33:33 am
You're saying you wouldn't like the chance to get back at all the gold spammers and other idiots? It's better for the spammer, because they get a warning instead of a flat ban, and it's better for the rest of the community, because we get to shut them up personally, possibly diablerize them, and give them an in-game punishment for their in-game asshatery.

Nope, gold spammers should be banned outright for gold spamming, quite obviously. Thats against the TOS.

Behaviors thats not against the TOS shouldnt result in account penalties even if you dont like them. It may result in humanity loss, eventually permadeath, but certainly not account bans. Its legal behavior, its just not smart if you want to keep your character.

Besides, no automated system can fairly allocate such penalties. Bans can only happen after human review, they're a legal matter. Humanity loss will be a mechanical, programmed system. There's no way in hell they can overlap.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 29, 2011, 04:48:20 am
If they're using their accounts for gold farming, spamming, or conning, then they've already violated the terms of service. If they're not using them for anything else, then they've already forfeited their privilege of the account by violating the ToS. Players have accounts only so long as they abide by the rules the company who made the game puts in place; an account is an "equal opportunity" market, but if they choose to waste that opportunity, it's no-one's fault but their own. If it's an actual person on the other end, then they've made a conscious decision to violate the ToS and make the game unpleasant to play for everybody around them. If it's a bot, then there's no harm done either way, and the person paying for the bot account has violated the ToS by putting the bot on it.

They are also violating the integrity of the in-game atmosphere in ways that not even OOC language does. If we as players can hold people like gankers, griefers, and other people who harass other players for no "real" reason, through the offices of Prince and Sheriff, then gold farmers and spammers should be held accountable as well. By advertising their sales, they are disrupting our gameplay experience, and if they manage to sell their wares, they are disrupting the balance of the game thanks to out-of-game advantages. They are bringing out-of-game content into the game, which to me means they've already signed up for in-game repurcussions. The only difference between this and other MMORPGs is that players might get the chance to do some in-game policing of in-game disruptions themselves.

It won't be the players deciding who gets perma-death enabled; that's still up to the same people who would decide to ban accounts for gold farming, spamming, etc, etc. All players who are abiding by the Terms of Service and still get their character into a perma-death-enabled state are doing so within the bounds of the game and by their own free will, so it's not a matter of "what I like" or "what I don't like". All such a system is doing is given the spammers a chance to correct their ways, and giving players a chance to do what would be done anyway. That's more of a chance than any other MMORPG gives us.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 29, 2011, 04:57:52 am
If they're using their accounts for gold farming, spamming, or conning, then they've already violated the terms of service. If they're not using them for anything else, then they've already forfeited their privilege of the account by violating the ToS. Players have accounts only so long as they abide by the rules the company who made the game puts in place; an account is an "equal opportunity" market, but if they choose to waste that opportunity, it's no-one's fault but their own. If it's an actual person on the other end, then they've made a concious decision to violate the ToS and make the game unpleasant to play for everybody around them. If it's a bot, then there's no harm done either way, and the person paying for the bot account has violated the ToS by putting the bot on it.

They are also violating the integrity of the in-game atmosphere in ways that not even OOC language does. If we as players can hold people like gankers, griefers, and other people who harass other players for no "real" reason, through the offices of Prince and Sheriff, then gold farmers and spammers should be held accountable as well. By advertising their sales, they are disrupting our gameplay experience, and if they manage to sell their wares, they are disrupting the balance of the game thanks to out-of-game advantages. They are bringing out-of-game content into the game, which to me means they've already signed up for in-game repurcussions. The only difference between this and other MMORPGs is that players might get the chance to do some in-game policing of in-game disruptions themselves.
...

Yeah that wont happen. Spamming and gold selling are likely to be bannable offenses and they will result in bans, but the game needs a GM staff to handle this. It cant be done through players. And its certainly not acceptable that spammers or gold sellers be "given a chance to change their ways". They can, its called buying a new account and paying with a different credit card. Rules cannot be half-enforced like that. Legit players wouldn't stand for it.

As for conning, its actually not only legal but encouraged in EVE online, where a recent theft of a trillion ISK through a pyramid scheme was applauded as a sign of the game's vitality and depth, so its a whole separate issue.

Permadeath needs to exist for gameplay related reasons if it exists at all. Violations of the TOS aren't things that should be dealt with through gameplay.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 29, 2011, 05:09:46 am
By "conning" I mean doing things like stealing other players' account information, or "borrowing" accounts to use for nefarious purposes, like gold spamming. Obviously I don't mean in-game conning; this is the World of Darkness, here. Caveat emptor within the game, as long as you're playing by the game's rules and the game's allowances.

That's my point - they aren't being punished in-game for out-of-game violations. They are committing in-game violations by disrupting the balance of the game, harassing other players, and exploiting unfair advantages. I'm saying that they should be punished* for both sets of violations - in-game through perma-death, and out-of-game by banning.

*Or, at least, the other players should get the chance to get some consolation out of their cold, dead ashes.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 29, 2011, 05:41:48 am
Ah yes by that definition, conning should definitely be bannable.

Well I understand your sentiment even if I doubt its workable. Keep in mind, diablerie would certainly drains ones humanity anyway; is that something you want to waste on a banned botter? *shrugs*

The banhammer is swift and effective. If I really had to throw someone out of my house at a PnP game because they misbehaved really badly OOC, I assume the main reaction would be that everyones glad the disruptive element is gone and that we can resume play. Whilst "can I have the stuff on his sheet" be heard, everyone would likely assume it was a joke :)

A cheater/goldseller/etc player's character's due fate is Damnatio memoriae, plain and simple. Excise them from the game as if they had never been there, and let players who are there to enjoy the game forget him as quickly as possible.

A character that reaches Humanity zero through in-game, legitimate actions, however, is a whole different story. Dealing with such a beast is an interesting part of gameplay, and its a really different thing to me.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on September 29, 2011, 06:17:10 am
Perma-death probably won't be achievable solely through diablerie; they could just kill the character, and since they're already on the Red List, so to speak, I would hope that the killing character wouldn't take a hit to their Humanity. As you say, it's them putting down a [monstrous] beast, not killing children during nappy-time.

If you're comparing this to table-top then I would say this: You wouldn't ban someone from the group for their first offense, especially if they had an established character, would you? You would try to get them to cooperate with the rest of the group and give them a warning that you won't tolerate that kind of behavior in your house. In this case, however, by acting disruptively OOC, they are also acting disruptively in the game, since... y'know, they're in the game. They're not being punished for acting like an ass in-character, or even acting like an ass personally. They're being punished for screwing with the game.

To continue with the tabletop analogy, it would be like someone adding five dots to their Resources Background, or to their Generation background, or Discipline levels, or just about anything else they didn't earn. And all the while, they are yelling at the top of their lungs. As much as that would disrupt a tabletop game, so do gold-spammers and farmers and what-have-you disrupt MMORPGs. By kicking them out of the group, you are also kicking them out of the game; something either has to happen to their character in-game to explain the loss (like killing them off - by blood hunt, even!  :holy:) or being taken over by another, more responsible player.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nanaloma on September 30, 2011, 12:42:32 am
On that note, since the Sabbat isn't going to be in at launch, is there going to be a sort of "Anarch-friendly" zone in the city, since technically - very technically - the Anarchs are part of the Camarilla, and exist only at their sufferance? I'm kind of torn between starting a Sabbat guild-analogue and starting an Anarch guild-analogue, now.

Why the need for anything official?  Just play as an anarch with some fellow anarchists and oppose the man but not too harshly so a war doesn't start.  I may be one. 
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: PGM1961 on September 30, 2011, 01:56:31 am
Being an anarch is sometimes a matter of degrees.  You may not feel strongly enough -- or have power enough -- to oppose 'the man' at every possible opportunity.  But if there's a line that you don't cross, or one that you don't allow the Prince to cross, then you're a potential anarch.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on September 30, 2011, 02:17:54 am
Eve did it!  The plethora of pirate (player character) organizations are basically "kill on sight" to nearly all NPCs, and any player can attack them at any place, any time.  Because of this, they're relegated to the darker corners of low security space, in a limbo between Empire and the expanses of 0.0 space.  There is no game mechanic that forces them to work together, nor is there a mechanic that prevents them from attacking one another for no reason.  They do it out of mutual interest, and for survival.  Of course, the reason they got that way in the first place was through deliberate, sustained aggression against the "civilized" residents.  That is...they chose to be pirates, then put a fair amount of effort into making it happen.

Oh I know.

The real question is...could such a system still work once perma-death enters the equation?

No way in hell. This is why you're crazy :)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on October 01, 2011, 05:39:05 am
Brujah, who hates the Brujah (anarch or not but as a clan) because the Brujah represents da man, just as much as any other establishment. HNGGGG.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on October 06, 2011, 08:46:57 am
Brujah, who hates the Brujah (anarch or not but as a clan) because the Brujah represents da man, just as much as any other establishment. HNGGGG.

Epic undead paradox.

Gir's Paradox (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zGlKoVE-XT0#)
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on October 06, 2011, 02:39:11 pm
Invader Zim!
wish there where more episodes!
i wan't the invader zim ice cream truck in the MMO!
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on October 07, 2011, 07:46:42 am
icecream (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUddaWNslgE#)

Best way to make ghouls.  Ever.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Aydoo on October 07, 2011, 01:19:55 pm
Oh Jhonen Vasquez how irrelevant you've become.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on December 12, 2011, 03:36:55 am
But since you're borrowing [another player's] car/limosuine/airplane (which I hope will cost some sort of upkeep)...
A further idea on this point. I'm thinking that maybe in addition to the standard cost of buying a motorcycle, car, plane, boat, etc, etc, there should be an addition "charge" whenever you use it, or at least a monthly fee that reflects maintenance costs. For example, vehicles require some sort of fuel, so they could make it that you need to pay a given amount of money before - or I'm thinking after might work better - you use it. I.e., if you have a car and you drive it around for a few blocks, you pay $5 to reflect gas costs. But if you drive from one city to another, you pay $100 for the same reason. Paying after makes slightly more sense to me, since you are "running low on gas" only during/after you use a vehicle, not before.
This would give players a reason to charge for letting other players use their travel services, especially for more secure - and thus expensive - modes like air travel. Planes require a lot more in the way of upkeep than the most high-end car does. In short, having some sort of vehicle is partially a reflection of a character's Resources Background, and it should show it. It's one thing to say you own the WODMMO equivalent of an "epic mount" - a Ferrari or bullet-proof limousine, say - but it's quite another thing to be able to afford driving it to Elysium every night.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on December 20, 2011, 07:24:19 am
I have mixed feelings about your suggestions,  you basically gave us 2 models:

periodical upkeep - maintenance costs:
pro:

cons:


on use - travel fee:
pro:
cons:

conclusion (for now):
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on December 20, 2011, 09:04:38 am
I have mixed feelings about your suggestions,  you basically gave us 2 models:

periodical upkeep - maintenance costs:
pro:
  • Good money sink for ingame economy
  • Could make some travel methods more exclusive
  • Gives a bit of realism
  • Ingame cab drive options and stuff might become available

cons:
  • What happends if you can't pay?
    • it gets disabled
    • you lose it
  • it's bad for not so active players
  • Could make some travel methods more exclusive
    • yes this is both good and bad :P
  • Money drains are annoying and frustrating, people like owning and pwning stuff


on use - travel fee:
pro:
  • Money drain
  • Fair system
  • Also adds realism (everything cost money :P)
cons:
  • Paying for stuff you already supposed to 'own' sucks
  • Everyone owns a ferrari, helicopter and airplane (in time)

conclusion (for now):
  • People like not paying for stuff, and while this is not realistic, it is a game!
  • Exclusive stuff is good to have a little, because it rewards players... but it should not give unfair advantages, or make the game less fun if you don't have them
    • the key thing here is to have more then one, so that people have to choose where they want to spend that extra money on...
    • Like driving a car cost the same, for ferrari/old truck, but you have a big initial investment difference
    • - have to think for better examples :(... hate that...
    • anyways, i still prefer to GTA :)

A good work around for not paying is stealing ( obviously there is no reason to steal gas if you don't have to pay for gas for your motorbike...) .

In short, if you can't pay for something you can try to get it illegally, it is the world of darkness full of crime after-all and money is a crime as Pink Floyd say.

 The Downside for buying gas is mostly that it can become a hassle if needed too frequently, on the + side , getting gas or running out of can be an adventure, depending on how the rest of the game is structured.(some games kill off any possible narrative that may result from such a Zombie/Horror film situation by introducing meta-gameplay)

But yeah now that WoDMMO may not even happen I wont hold my breath for something groundbreaking like this, they have to implement a tons of other features around elaborate commodities costs(such as the ability to steal these commodities) to make it feasible without frustrating the users because you can't create reality half way, if you do it will probably suck or be like these MMORPGs that string you along with gambling and denying you any closure(not to mention having some of the most boring pointless get me 10 chickens storylines).
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on December 20, 2011, 04:09:35 pm
The very potential unfairness of the system is a running theme of the World of Darkness. However, my pay-to-drive scheme is also pretty much founded on my idea for the Resources Background - a constantly daily/weekly/monthly allowance: more dots equal more cash. That way there's a constant source of income to pay for this "travel tax". In practice, it's really no different than paying to travel in any other MMO, except the travel is under the player's control. This will in no way prohibit characters from taking other travel routes, as I detail earlier in this thread. (See page 8.)

Lots of MMOs require a standard upkeep for all sorts of investments. In Star Wars Galaxies (though I don't know if they do this anymore, given how the game's changed), guilds had to pay upkeep for guild buildings and cities they already "owned"/crafted and bought once. Players resident in that city had to pay a tax (of a greater or lesser amount) every day so the city could maintain its prominence. If your vehicle - spaceship or speeder bike - got damaged or destroyed, you had to pay to repair it or buy a new one. (And that was a pretty common occurence.)

This "money sink" will take the place of money sinks in other games: you probably won't need to pay for training or leveling up in the WODMMO, for example (unless maybe you want to learn an out-of-Clan Discipline), and you probably won't need to pay to repair your items (it's either broken or it's not, and you could probably repair it yourself with dots in Crafts). If they get the economy right, it'll be easier and cheaper to buy something new than pay to have something repaired. Having your property destroyed was annoying sure - but then, it's supposed to be annoying. It is neither realistic nor fair if the Prince can just pull another limousine out of his pocket and flee from the Anarch gang tailing him on foot, and repeat indefinitely. There needs to be the potential to FAIL in an MMO for once. Too many games simply take the "Reload/respawn until you win" route.

For the purposes of the WODMMO, I'm thinking player-owned vehicles can be destroyed, but not stolen, like in EVE Online. (That is to say, the ones that are already unpackaged, fitted, and being flown. A packaged "inventory item" can still be stolen in EVE, I believe.) You'll have to steal NPC vehicles lying around just for that purpose, with an appropriate cut in quality. Though it would be a very good political ploy to steal the Prince's limo and then have it seen driving away from a crime scene, that's something that I think would be saved for beta-testing and balance before they just put it in.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nosferatu Numbers Station on December 25, 2011, 11:06:49 am
In Star Wars Galaxies (though I don't know if they do this anymore, given how the game's changed), guilds had to pay upkeep for guild buildings and cities they already "owned"/crafted and bought once. Players resident in that city had to pay a tax (of a greater or lesser amount) every day so the city could maintain its prominence. If your vehicle - spaceship or speeder bike - got damaged or destroyed, you had to pay to repair it or buy a new one. (And that was a pretty common occurence.)


Yeah didn't they just shut down all the servers just recently to make way for SW:TOR?

Also, I wonder how being poor would work to one's advantage?  I'm not saying it'd be a viable thing, but I would also imagine that not relying as much on money would set you free from the problems that follow for depending on it.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on December 25, 2011, 08:47:06 pm
I have a slightly more traditional-MMO vision than Rick for the game so I'm not onboard with the concept of wealth being distributed through wealth dots. Wealth dots are an abstraction that is neccessary in PnP but that ought to be replaced by a real economy where actions are needed to generate currency.

However I wanted to reply to this;
Quote
In Star Wars Galaxies (though I don't know if they do this anymore, given how the game's changed)

Star Wars Galaxies has shut down for good :(

There was a series of 'closing events' starting Dec 15, and the MMO servers went offline as SWTOR servers went officially up following a weeklong staggered launch.

The game wasn't pulling in any revenue anymore and most of the guilds transfered to Bioware's new MMO. They offered guild-transfer support mechanics and several other things to ease the transition, but long story short, SWG is dead. R.I.P.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on December 26, 2011, 10:48:34 pm
Well, that's how they USED to do it in Star Wars Galaxies. I stopped playing after they effed up the game.

And yes, Nossie Numbers. The advantage of being poor is the same as in real life: it's much less complicated, and, hey, you don't have anything worth stealing, so nobody will steal from you!
Relying fully upon the in-game economy is iffy, as EVE Online constantly proves. I think it would be nice if players didn't have to spend all their time looking for new markets and managing their shipping business. It would be nice to play a little, y'know? Vampires, especially, always seem to have a lot of cash on hand, as they can save it up instead of spending it on things like food, heating, bills, etc. A couple of good investments (represented by the Resources Background dots) solves the problem.
Having the Resources Background is also a great leveler - if everybody can buy a cash inflow, then maybe - just maybe - the game market won't end up like World of WarCraft, because everybody will be able to afford something, and so they won't have to charge the equivalent of $1,000,000 for a pair of epic shoes. I generally trust CCP handling the economy, as they've gotten a lot of experience from EVE Online, but a vampire economy works somewhat different, methinks.
If players didn't have a constant source of income, though, paying for that Ferrari would be even more impressive.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on December 26, 2011, 11:56:02 pm
Having the Resources Background is also a great leveler - if everybody can buy a cash inflow, then maybe - just maybe - the game market won't end up like World of WarCraft, because everybody will be able to afford something, and so they won't have to charge the equivalent of $1,000,000 for a pair of epic shoes. I generally trust CCP handling the economy, as they've gotten a lot of experience from EVE Online, but a vampire economy works somewhat different, methinks.
If players didn't have a constant source of income, though, paying for that Ferrari would be even more impressive.

A ressource background as you envision it is indeed a 'great leveler'; it's gaming communism.

Now, you can easily convince me that on humanitarian grounds socialism has merits in real life, but it certainly has none in gameplay. A player that works hard at gathering wealth SHOULD have immensely more than one who doesn't make any effort, and the current MMO system of virtual currencies does that just fine.

If your concern is truly inflation and realistic prices, I can get behind you on that one. The fix to this isn't free money though (and that's what a merit that injects unearned cash into the game is). In fact, such a mechanic would guarantee massive inflation, as it's basically Quantitative-Easing-that-never-ends. The road to reasonable prices is precisely the opposite; being stingy in terms of rewards and having more money drains than what people are used to in MMORPGs. I can TOTALLY get behind such a vision and indeed it's my own proposal. Make a stingy economy with multiple and harsh money drains so that virtual currency remains very worrthwhile.

Economy is actually one of the few areas where I think modern MMOs go too far towards making things convenient for everyone at the expense of good gameplay. Bet your ass a free allowance on the basis of merit dots is the last thing I want to see.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on December 27, 2011, 10:03:42 am
Having the Resources Background is also a great leveler - if everybody can buy a cash inflow, then maybe - just maybe - the game market won't end up like World of WarCraft, because everybody will be able to afford something, and so they won't have to charge the equivalent of $1,000,000 for a pair of epic shoes. I generally trust CCP handling the economy, as they've gotten a lot of experience from EVE Online, but a vampire economy works somewhat different, methinks.
If players didn't have a constant source of income, though, paying for that Ferrari would be even more impressive.

A ressource background as you envision it is indeed a 'great leveler'; it's gaming communism.

Now, you can easily convince me that on humanitarian grounds socialism has merits in real life, but it certainly has none in gameplay. A player that works hard at gathering wealth SHOULD have immensely more than one who doesn't make any effort, and the current MMO system of virtual currencies does that just fine.

If your concern is truly inflation and realistic prices, I can get behind you on that one. The fix to this isn't free money though (and that's what a merit that injects unearned cash into the game is). In fact, such a mechanic would guarantee massive inflation, as it's basically Quantitative-Easing-that-never-ends. The road to reasonable prices is precisely the opposite; being stingy in terms of rewards and having more money drains than what people are used to in MMORPGs. I can TOTALLY get behind such a vision and indeed it's my own proposal. Make a stingy economy with multiple and harsh money drains so that virtual currency remains very worrthwhile.

Economy is actually one of the few areas where I think modern MMOs go too far towards making things convenient for everyone at the expense of good gameplay. Bet your ass a free allowance on the basis of merit dots is the last thing I want to see.

Seems to me that in the real world most people who make it to the filthy rich category usually achieve it by either:
-Making others work for them while they mostly manage the machines or people who do the stuff for them and reap the rewards of their initiative.

-Finding a niche, as capitalism prizes people with rare set expertise or skill, much of this is actually luck because only so many people can get to occupy these rare positions.

-Inherited accumulated wealth that can grow simply by having other people depend on that wealth(which is really stupid when you really think about it but capitalism makes it work)

-Gambits and system overrides of various kinds including Tax and Monopoly.

In all of the above cases these people do not work harder than average and the reason for their wealth is actually that the system or society values what they do above what other people do which becomes exponentially biased over time as the people with the wealth gain more influence over how the system and society is structured.
(which goes against the "Grind" model theory of mainstream MMORPGs)

 I just thought Id point it it out if we are already talking about realistic economy models.
Free money is of course not a fix, Communism is as much of a fail as Capitalism if not more so, and we are talking about an MMORPG here anyway.

I think that in OWoD Economy works like a Clearance Pass, You have Resources 3 , then you have access to X items in the Resource 3 level supported by the character background which is usually back-lit by how your character spend their Downtime(when the player doesn't actually play) and some minor maintenance obligations and responsibilities related to owning assets.

You can of course spend time working or grinding to get more money but I think most of use have jobs in Real life and we do not need another one and while there are exceptions ,in most cases ,work is not fun.
Possible solutions:
-Character uses AI to work in Downtime, much like the sims or so with the player only responsible to managing the stuff around it(what type of job is it, finding the job, contact with co-workers etc) .

-Crime Contracts, stock markets etc

The Idea is that game-play that focuses on economy eventually turns out to be somewhat of a hollow grindy experience and I could be wrong but to me I think that OWoD is more than the greedy casino style game-play you see in so many MMORPGs and so the focus of the actual game-play should be more on the social and supernatural aspects with economy only simulated in the background to give motivation rather than being a goal in itself .

To give some of my perspective lets say you played Morrowind and have grind-ed the shit out of that game so you have 10000000 gold, even if it was multiplayer and you could spend that money to upgrade to a new E-penis of some kind , it wouldn't matter much , it won't make for a pivotal story hook if you buy The Epic sword of Pwnage because the Game-world does not relate to it aside from random pointless NPC commentary maybe... (Maybe in PvP it would but then it also Depends on what PvP allows you to accomplish or how PvP affects the game-world)
EVE overcame much of this by creative a sandbox game-world with a dynamic, mostly player-based economy(I say mostly because they still have NPCs that constantly inject credits into the game-world) and PvP that introduces an element of risk and use to the economy, and yet the goal of the game seems to remain at getting more money to dominate financially and even the 'Research' and 'exploration in the game are actually just meta-mechanics to get at more wealth.  (To their credit I will say that they did a good job considering the technical challenges and limitation one would face in making meaningful Research and Exploration)

I think the motivations in Human life other than money include:

- Love

- Creation or Alteration (end goals of research typically)

- Exploration (more associated with achieving enlightenment rather than finding a gold mine IMO)

- Ascention and Improvement.

Money in capitalism is connected to all of these as a meta enabler but is not the goal nor the actual means and I think the Vampires in OWoD illustrate this perfectly by moving behind the scenes of human society ,wielding incredible power and influence that are  independent of the monetary system (which is believable by them being supernaturals).
 Gary lives in a Sewer for example...
So to conclude, while I would like WoDMMO to simulate realistic Economy, I don't want it to be the focal point of the game-play

To be honest ill also say that though it is addicting, I am no longer intellectually fooled by getting stuff example Solid Armor of Extreme Defense or 100xp as a quest reward that is supposedly the point of the game and I would like to see a good AAA game that transcend these  popular reoccurring design tricks .
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on December 28, 2011, 05:04:27 am
A "cash-lite" economy, so to speak, where there obtaining money is hard and thus money itself becomes a scarcity, isn't any better than a super-inflated system where everybody has oodles of money. "Cash-lite" systems - such as World of WarCraft, where 500 gold on-hand probably means you've been cheating - doesn't stop players from asking absurdly high prices for anything. In fact, with money itself being a scarcity, they would ask just as much, but only a few people would be able to pay for it, thus making the sellers hugely profitable and everybody else poor. As long as there's one person out there who can afford it, people will sell it for as high as they can.
Now, I'm not saying that a cash-overflow system is the solution, either. EVE Online has that kind of system, where you can earn hundreds of thousands of ISK for doing a single mission at the higher tiers of play. This has turned the game into a "little fish, big pond" scenario, where new players or players who don't want to play economics are screwed. You have to rely on charity and probably some very trustworthy corporation connections to progress at anything better than a snail's crawl.
In Vampire: The Masquerade, the Resources Background specifies dollar amounts that are well within the means of low- and medium-income persons. (Let's keep in mind that vampires have much less in the way of costs and real-life "money sinks", like food.) Only at five does does it really become an issue, and it should be toned down to fit the economics of real-life. Call it:

• $100/0
•• $250/0
••• $500/0
•••• $1,000/0
••••• $2,500/0

(The extra zero tacked on there depends on the scale used. If 5 dots on Resources means you're the equivalent of a Fortune 500 company CEO, then $25,000/month seems a little more appropriate.)
This is a much, much smaller scale than presented in the books (Vampire: The Masquerade, pg. 132, and it can be further scaled up or down by how frequently this income is granted to the player (daily, weekly, monthly). I'm not talking about earning $500,000 a month for the player doing nothing to earn it. A month's income should mean something, but it shouldn't be an "I-win" button, nor should it be "Great, I got $100! I can buy my Ferarri with this!" due to money scarcity. It should be a realistic income but - and here's where things get important, because money itself is all but worthless - what also needs to be fixed is what you can buy, and how much it costs.
Even if we kept the original scale in the VTM sourcebook, and vampires were getting an income of $50,000 a month, there needs to be things to spend it on, and some sort of competition that makes spending money worthwhile. It doesn't matter if you're the richest vampire in the game if you're never spending any of your money. Money is power, and power only exists if exercised. So in keeping with the proposed scale above, buying a top-of-the-line Ferrari would cost something around $50,000. That's at least two months' income, money that you can't spend on other things like haven upkeep, blood dolls, bribes, and paying off your minions. Factor in those expenses, and you're probably looking at at least three months to afford a new Ferrari - with the highest income in the game. THEN factor in the possibility of that Ferrari getting shot to pieces by a rival or Sabbat pack. It should be like the equivalent of losing a battleship in EVE Online - it'll take a while to fully replace. Now, there's nothing stopping a well-established vampire from stocking up on multiple Ferraris (if they have the haven/garage space to store them, which comes with a rent cost of its own...), just like there's nothing stopping people from buying the same ship and loadout in EVE Online as a backup. However, you still have to wait for that money, whether through Resource dots or earning it on the streets.
Free income via the Resources Background shouldn't be all that easy to obtain in the first place, either. You don't get something for nuthin' in this world, much less the World of Darkness. Questlines to get another dot would not be out of place, and the experience cost to buy the next dot can grow exponentially, so you're spending at least as much time, money, and experience to GET the next dot as you would ever receive in months of that income.
If there are only so many Ferraris available for purchase, then this introduces new factors. If there are three Ferraris available from car dealerships around the city (or more likely, one high-end dealership), then having that car as a status symbol is going to be worth a LOT. That means the political people will be gearing up towards buying it, just to show they can afford it. If any old player can afford a Ferrari, there's no reason to buy a Ferrari. All you really need is a functional car for $10,000. The difference is that if the economy - which is the things you buy and the money you use to buy them - scales realistically, a $10,000 go-cart is going to be worth a LOT more to a Gangrel with no dots in Resources than it is to the Ventrue moneybags who can eventually afford a Ferrari.
These benefits are not solely cosmetic, either. There should be a point in buying that Ferrari aside from a status symbol - or in another sense, there should be something backing up that status symbol. For cars, this can be something as simple as maximum speed: a $10,000 go-cart goes up to 50mph, a Ferrari can go up to 110mph. The things you can afford with the parallel Resource dots scales.

• Go-cart  (50mph)
•• VW Bug/Minivan (65mph)
••• Something better than a minivan (80 pmh)
•••• Something better than a minivan, but not as good as a Ferrari (95mph)
••••• Ferrari (110mph)

In other words, a good economy depends not only on how much money you earn, but how that income scales with what is available for purchase and how much those things cost. The easier it is to get money, the more money-sinks there should be. This is why I also propose there should be things like haven upkeep and gas prices.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on December 28, 2011, 07:16:06 am
A "cash-lite" economy, so to speak, where there obtaining money is hard and thus money itself becomes a scarcity, isn't any better than a super-inflated system where everybody has oodles of money.

Actually it is better because then things can at least be interesting, but that interest tend to fade as 1 or 2 groups manage to monopolize the system and create a sort of localized inflation.

I think that even EVE would become more interesting if they didn't constantly inject more money into the game using NPCs and players would become more dependent on one another, but that requires the devs to also make more elaborate game-play than the traditional go-to and kill quests that plague EVE Online and other MMORPGs throughout their initial game-play. (In EVE its good because it introduces people to the game, but past that point it becomes repeatative and somewhat boring).


WoD Resources system give you a tangiable value representative so you can better relate to it but it is not necessarily used mechanically like that.
 Anyway in principle I'm not that big of a fan of 'spending money in games' for the sake of spending money in games,  Sure it is probably in the game design 101 book but aside from getting people hooked on shopping addiction it doesn't do much to make the game more interesting in my eyes and in the end I think players tend to see this for how pointless and silly this is even if they by then they still feel compulsion to play that loot casino and buy stuff.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on December 28, 2011, 04:04:01 pm
Speaking of casinos, there should definitely be a casino or two in the WODMMO cities.

It's getting to the point where we're not talking about city design so much right now. New economics thread?

I don't see how localized high inflation would be much nicer. If players can travel freely, then they can either go somewhere much less expensive to buy, or those valuable items in the game will be expensive no matter where you go, it'll just be that there are fewer and fewer sellers, who can charge whatever they want. That's not just inflation, that's a monopoly. There may actually be more than one monopoly on a given good, but that doesn't help the buyer much.

I'm thinking a lot of the items vampires would consume - Ferraris, haven sites, clothing, not to mention the comparatively small items like spending money on drinks in a bar to pick up a feeding target - would be purchased from NPC vendors, so that CCP can control their prices. Even the Resource Background dots shouldn't be locked in stone - CCP could easily arrange it so that there's a dip in Resource income to represent a city falling on hard times, or raise prices but not income level (sort of like now in the U.S....), making players have to unify their efforts somehow in order to rejuvenate the local economy and get their full income back. Naturally there would also be competition as some players or player-conglomerates try to rejuvenate THEIR businesses, but not others. To my mind, money itself should not be a scarcity, but the ways in which someone gets money should be somewhat scarce, to create competition. I know a free Resources income isn't exactly conductive to this, but that's one reason why a new dot should be exponentially more expensive to get.

In EVE Online, you can only get so much out of a minefield, and unless you're lucky or play at weird hours, there's probably someone nearby who's after the same minerals. There could be a similar set-up in the WODMMO, where there are scarce valuable items, and then players can collect and disperse those scarce items amongst themselves for a profit. That's sort of a standard MMO economy, but it still gives CCP control over the foundation of the economy. The WODMMO has to be smaller than the EVE Online universe, so they're going to need different ways to control the economy than simply adding in a few new systems with more asteroid belts.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on December 28, 2011, 04:11:27 pm
Quote
A "cash-lite" economy, so to speak, where there obtaining money is hard and thus money itself becomes a scarcity, isn't any better than a super-inflated system where everybody has oodles of money. "Cash-lite" systems - such as World of WarCraft, where 500 gold on-hand probaby means you've been cheating - doesn't stop players from asking absurdly high prices for anything. In fact, with money itself being a scarcity, they would ask just as much, but only a few people would be able to pay for it, thus making the sellers hugely profitable and everybody else poor. As long as there's one person out there who can afford it, people will sell it for as high as they can.

Err, yes, congratulations on Economics 101 ;) Of course a market-based economy means market based pricing.

And thats what I want. Thats an awesome part of online games to me. Scarcity IS desirable and should be encouraged.

Your suggestions for a Merit/Background basis for the whole economy isn't good gameplay. Everyone will get the merit and then have access to everything? You just killed one of the only sources of interesting interaction in MMORPGs, the others being grouping together to kill shit, and melting each others' faces. Frankly, no thanks.

Furthermore, it wouldnt even WORK unless you also prohibit trading between players. Without a functional currency provided by the game, what do you think would happen? A player-made currency would rise to fill the void, quite simply. One that couldn't, unlike ISK or gold, be controlled by game-based sinks by virtue of its unofficial nature. An excellent example was the rise of the 'Stone of Jordan' as the main currency of pre-runes Diablo 2, and runes afterwards. There's no reasonable reason to hoard 60 SOJs but given in-game gold was essentially worthless, the playerbase turned to that as a currency. Same thing will happen in any game where you can trade but nothing valuable is set as currency, its that simple. And basing in-game NPC services on a Merit is essentially denying your game a worthwhile official currency.

An in-game market economy is fun for alot of people. Its addictive, its even a reason to play for some. You dont take it away without a damn good reason. Orthodox adherence to systems designed to get around the flaws of tabletop gameplay isn't using your platform intelligently, either.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on December 28, 2011, 07:29:44 pm
I think that even EVE would become more interesting if they didn't constantly inject more money into the game using NPCs and players

As you said, a constant influx of money (out of thin air) can mess up the economy.  That's why games like Eve use "money sinks" that ensure that money can also disappear from the economy in a way that doesn't hurt the gameplay.  Eve uses the sales of PLEX (game time cards) to curb inflation.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on December 29, 2011, 12:12:08 am
Valamyr, where are you getting the idea that I'm out to destroy a player-based economy? There is no practical difference between a Resource Background and normal MMORPG cash income besides that the Resources Background eliminates all the tedious grinding. Players would hardly "get it all" even with five dots in Resources - if there's the Resource Background, it would make sense to have other Backgrounds like Contacts, Allies, Retainers, and even Generation. Not including Disciplines and actual Abilities and such things like blood dolls, reputation, and kickassness. (I don't think the World of Darkness MMO is going to go so far that you can actually BUY NPC people off the street - at least, not aboveground.) If they sink all their Background points into Resources, then they're going to have a lot of money, but not a lot of anything else. They'll need the money to pay the low-Generation hit-men to do their killing for them; they'll need people with lots of Contacts to buy/sell through; they'll need to pay another player to guard their banks and money stashes from player thieves.
Even at Resources 5, there's still plenty of marketability to be had, in different "currencies". If you can buy a Ferrari every two months, and you possess a surplus of Ferraris, then you can trade it to another player in exchange for a service or other commodity, like blood dolls. Having a lot of money only gives you control over the means of the exchange, not the items being exchanged. As we have both pointed out, money by itself is worthless. Buying things from NPCs like _username mentions means that there are money sinks that remove money from the player economy in the same way money is added to it. No other system to date can prevent players from hoarding up money if they exercise any caution at all.
And the Resources Background is hardly going to be the only way to get or spend money. Players will be able to get some cash rewards from quests, player contracts, intimidation/blackmail, etc, etc. Even those without Resources will be able to work for the ones who do - that's the whole premise of capitalism, that is. Resources is simply another opportunity given to players, and they may choose to exercise it or not. The only thing that would turn Resources into a game-breaker is if it turned into the one and only judgment of a character, and you yourself just said that's not very likely. If that did turn out to be the case, they would find another standard of exchange - perhaps Ferraris. But there would be multiple ways to get Ferraris in the game, Resources being just one of them. No matter what players do, though, there will be some sort of waiting period or work required preventing them from just spamming out Ferraris.
It's the games where players are given control over the means of production - a fully communist game, more or less - that are the broken ones. World of WarCraft's Alchemy, Enchanting, and various other player-made services. Star Wars Galaxies' entire crafting system. The solution is not to make money rare, but to make money realistic. This depends on what's available to players. World of WarCraft did this stupidly because everything was rare, from herb bunches to Epic Lootz. It took hours to finding and grinding to get a good amount of something. In the WODMMO, you shouldn't have to be too rich to be able to afford a cell phone, but it should take some time and effort to buy our favorite example of the Ferrari. Some Clans, like the Nosferatu and Gangrel, have much lower overhead costs. Gangrel save money on havens and possibly blood sources (hunting animals as they do, instead of buying drinks for girls in bars, e.g.); Nossies save money on havens as well. Generally speaking. (Rick Gentle will probably have a big comfy bed sized for two-plus in his luxuriously-appointed haven. Wink-wink.)

Now, I'm not stuck on Resources offering a straight-up, totally-free cash inflow. Continuing in the vein of Resources as an opportunity, you might have to do anything from simply hitting up an NPC banker to get your monthly income, to solving mini-quests like tracking down a Contact who hasn't paid you in a while. This would probably be more fair, as it would prevent players from simply making one high-finance character and just letting them sit there raking in the cash. You would at minimum have to log on to get the money. (However, this does not solve the problem of multiple accounts, but then, what MMO has solved that problem yet?)
I'm not trying to break the game economy here, I'm trying to eliminate its more tiresome aspects.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: phonixor on December 31, 2011, 11:16:44 am
@Rick
Once again val made some excellent points (wish i had a fangirl smiley *eeugh*), you should read his post more carefully.
- everyone will have the same minimum income, because everyone will have those skills...
skills that everyplayer will have, should be removed from the game! skills should be choices!
- like you mentioned:  if you have a skilldots based incomes you will get many "farm" accounts... unless you limit account creation which reduces that a little

you do have a valid point though that grinding should not be what the game is about!
therefor i once again i propose ingame objects that give income (like the bar in bloodlines)
- players have to protect these assets!
- they are limited!
- no lame just dots, but real ingame representation!
- high income is hard to have and defend!

while having never played EVE i still think they should make stuff like mining done by NPC, hired by players... not by players themselves.
- players should do missions
- exploring
- fighting
- trading
- pirating
- building an empire
... you know have fun!


Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: PGM1961 on December 31, 2011, 12:39:43 pm
@Rick
you do have a valid point though that grinding should not be what the game is about!
therefor i once again i propose ingame objects that give income (like the bar in bloodlines)
(Edit.)
while having never played EVE i still think they should make stuff like mining done by NPC, hired by players... not by players themselves.
- players should do missions
- exploring
- fighting
- trading
- pirating
- building an empire
... you know have fun!

Yes, exactly.  Vampire PCs could just get a night job, work their shift, and catch a 'bite' to eat on the way home.  But that would NOT be a fun game, at least for me.

That's why we need to be able to create ghouls, to run our daytime affairs and keep the cash flowing.  Because even anarch revolutions need financial backing.   :smile:
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Radical21 on January 01, 2012, 06:12:52 am
@Rick
you do have a valid point though that grinding should not be what the game is about!
therefor i once again i propose ingame objects that give income (like the bar in bloodlines)
(Edit.)
while having never played EVE i still think they should make stuff like mining done by NPC, hired by players... not by players themselves.
- players should do missions
- exploring
- fighting
- trading
- pirating
- building an empire
... you know have fun!

Yes, exactly.  Vampire PCs could just get a night job, work their shift, and catch a 'bite' to eat on the way home.  But that would NOT be a fun game, at least for me.

That's why we need to be able to create ghouls, to run our daytime affairs and keep the cash flowing.  Because even anarch revolutions need financial backing.   :smile:

Come to think of it I don't think some  missions/quests are any good either, the "kill 20 NPC" style quests also feels like grindy work and it is not very adventurous, so at least for me id prefer to replace the 'Missions' with 'Adventures' or 'Epic Adventure' just so the Game Designers have it more defined.

Seriously, I have no idea where the "Collect X items" or "Defeat X Monsters" or "Visit X Locations" Style tasks started and why Game Designers seem to like them so much(Aside from being lazy) but I have yet to encounter a player who actually likes that repetitive stuff.

While I was mostly cheering for the idea of creating a simulated reality, the fact is that most of us are already living the repeating day to day of reality and work in RL so I would prefer if that stuff was automated in game or tracked using Augmented Reality Cellphone Apps instead...
While this brings the so called End Game content(AKA the interesting content) much faster to the players, I agree with JA that in a honest game design I don't think players should wait for the game to start being fun.
(Addicting != Fun) More often than not I think the Grind is just an unhealthy compulsion that players with enough self-control snap out of and uninstall the game thereafter.

Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nanaloma on January 01, 2012, 03:04:59 pm
A "cash-lite" economy, so to speak, where there obtaining money is hard and thus money itself becomes a scarcity, isn't any better than a super-inflated system where everybody has oodles of money. "Cash-lite" systems - such as World of WarCraft, where 500 gold on-hand probaby means you've been cheating - doesn't stop players from asking absurdly high prices for anything. In fact, with money itself being a scarcity, they would ask just as much, but only a few people would be able to pay for it, thus making the sellers hugely profitable and everybody else poor. As long as there's one person out there who can afford it, people will sell it for as high as they can.
Now, I'm not saying that a cash-overflow system is the solution, either. EVE Online has that kind of system, where you can earn hundreds of thousands of ISK for doing a single mission at the higher tiers of play. This has turned the game into a "little fish, big pond" scenario, where new players or players who don't want to play economics are screwed. You have to rely on charity and probably some very trustworthy corporation connections to progress at anything better than a snail's crawl.
In Vampire: The Masquerade, the Resources Background specifies dollar amounts that are well within the means of low- and medium-income persons. (Let's keep in mind that vampires have much less in the way of costs and real-life "money sinks", like food.) Only at five does does it really become an issue, and it should be toned down to fit the economics of real-life. Call it:

• $100/0
•• $250/0
••• $500/0
•••• $1,000/0
••••• $2,500/0

(The extra zero tacked on there depends on the scale used. If 5 dots on Resources means you're the equivalent of a Fortune 500 company CEO, then $25,000/month seems a little more appropriate.)
This is a much, much smaller scale than presented in the books (Vampire: The Masquerade, pg. 132, and it can be further scaled up or down by how frequently this income is granted to the player (daily, weekly, monthly). I'm not talking about earning $500,000 a month for the player doing nothing to earn it. A month's income should mean something, but it shouldn't be an "I-win" button, nor should it be "Great, I got $100! I can buy my Ferarri with this!" due to money scarcity. It should be a realistic income but - and here's where things get important, because money itself is all but worthless - what also needs to be fixed is what you can buy, and [/i]how much it costs[/i].
Even if we kept the original scale in the VTM sourcebook, and vampires were getting an income of $500,000 a month, there needs to be things to spend it on, and some sort of competition that makes spending money worthwhile. It doesn't matter if you're the richest vampire in the game if you're never spending any of your money. Money is power, and power only exists if exercised. So in keeping with the proposed scale above, buying a top-of-the-line Ferrari would cost something around $50,000. That's at least two months' income, money that you can't spend on other things like haven upkeep, blood dolls, bribes, and paying off your minions. Factor in those expenses, and you're probably looking at at least three months to afford a new Ferrari - with the highest income in the game. THEN factor in the possibility of that Ferrari getting shot to pieces by a rival or Sabbat pack. It should be like the equivalent of losing a battleship in EVE Online - it'll take a while to fully replace. Now, there's nothing stopping a well-established vampire from stocking up on multiple Ferraris (if they have the haven/garage space to store them, which comes with a rent cost of its own...), just like there's nothing stopping people from buying the same ship and loadout in EVE Online as a backup. However, you still have to wait for that money, whether through Resource dots or earning it on the streets.
Free income via the Resources Background shouldn't be all that easy to obtain in the first place, either. You don't get something for nuthin' in this world, much less the World of Darkness. Questlines to get another dot would not be out of place, and the experience cost to buy the next dot can grow exponentially, so you're spending at least as much time, money, and experience to GET the next dot as you would ever receive in months of that income.
If there are only so many Ferraris available for purchase, then this introduces new factors. If there are three Ferraris available from car dealerships around the city (or more likely, one high-end dealership), then having that car as a status symbol is going to be worth a LOT. That means the political people will be gearing up towards buying it, just to show they can afford it. If any old player can afford a Ferrari, there's no reason to buy a Ferrari. All you really need is a functional car for $10,000. The difference is that if the economy - which is the things you buy and the money you use to buy them - scales realistically, a $10,000 go-cart is going to be worth a LOT more to a Gangrel with no dots in Resources than it is to the Ventrue moneybags who can eventually afford a Ferrari.
These benefits are not solely cosmetic, either. There should be a point in buying that Ferrari aside from a status symbol - or in another sense, there should be something backing up that status symbol. For cars, this can be something as simple as maximum speed: a $10,000 go-cart goes up to 50mph, a Ferrari can go up to 110mph. The things you can afford with the parallel Resource dots scales.

• Go-cart  (50mph)
•• VW Bug/Minivan (65mph)
••• Something better than a minivan (80 pmh)
•••• Something better than a minivan, but not as good as a Ferrari (95mph)
••••• Ferrari (110mph)

In other words, a good economy depends not only on how much money you earn, but how that income scales with what is available for purchase and how much those things cost. The easier it is to get money, the more money-sinks there should be. This is why I also propose there should be things like haven upkeep and gas prices.

Perhaps only NCOs should buy and sell.  Then the only wheeling and dealing would be with the black market (blood market?  :)  ).
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: mouser9169 on January 10, 2012, 12:39:23 am
Macro-economics. A dismal science, yet interesting at the same time.

Just like in the real world, a little inflation is a good thing. You need to give players the ability to accumulate wealth or it starts to feel pointless. Another great thing is the Auction House. Nothing in an auction house ever sells for more than it is worth, even though you may not be able to afford it.

The trick is balancing money sinks with money generators in a faucet/drain style economy. Very few games have really done this well.

The problem is volatility. Changes that take weeks or months to occur in the real world can happen in an MMO in a matter of days or even hours. And once the damage is done, is it a monumental task to try to repair. Personally, I'd love it if they hired a full time economist with real world money supply management background but that's probably out of their budget.

What I do think they should do is make everything "tweakable". If killing a human usually drops $20-$30 dollars (just to make up an example and a number), if the money supply starts building to fast, drop that down to $15-$25. Or raise it if the supply isn't growing fast enough or sinks are taking too much out. %AH fees can be another good, auto-scaling money sink (one they had forever in EQII until they took them out, in some cases at least, along with a bunch of other sinks for some bizarre reason).
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: _username on January 11, 2012, 01:09:05 am
Personally, I'd love it if they hired a full time economist with real world money supply management background but that's probably out of their budget.

Welcome to 2007.  CCP has professional economists monitor and (when necessary) advise fiscal policy concerning Eve's economy.  It's too central an element in that game to just leave it to chance.  The question remains whether or not the in-game economy will hold such sway in WoD.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Nanaloma on January 12, 2012, 09:20:41 pm
Personally, I'd love it if they hired a full time economist with real world money supply management background but that's probably out of their budget.

Welcome to 2007.  CCP has professional economists monitor and (when necessary) advise fiscal policy concerning Eve's economy.  It's too central an element in that game to just leave it to chance.  The question remains whether or not the in-game economy will hold such sway in WoD.

It really would be tougher.  IMO it would have to involve a lot of abstracted ghoul work during the daytime.  I think it could be done - just the more limited night only and limited number of cities aspect is worlds apart  :vampsmile: from "Eve". 
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Rick Gentle on January 12, 2012, 10:57:53 pm
Having to have other resources (retainers to do your dirty work, ghouls who love you so much they give you money [enter Heather], and owning a club from behind the scenes) would be an acceptable additional cost for the Resources Background. That is to say, if you want 3 dots in Resources, you have to dedicate 1 Retainer, 3 Contacts, and 3 Influence towards sustaining the income you receive from Resources.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: mouser9169 on January 13, 2012, 08:51:21 am
Having to have other resources (retainers to do your dirty work, ghouls who love you so much they give you money [enter Heather], and owning a club from behind the scenes) would be an acceptable additional cost for the Resources Background. That is to say, if you want 3 dots in Resources, you have to dedicate 1 Retainer, 3 contacts, and 3 Influence towards sustaining the income you receive from Resources.

We may be saying the same thing, but I don't think players (or characters, really) should have 'dots' in things like haven, or contacts, or resources.

If you want a haven, get one (everyone will probably start with a small one, or at least the availability of a small, low rent one). You want a bigger one? Pay for it. You want part ownership in a business? Pay for it. You want a 2nd business? You guessed it, pay for it. You want more resources, like money, so you can buy things like a bigger haven or part ownership in a club? Get off your butt and go kill things and take their stuff. Or do quests for some musty elder. Or buy and sell some stuff on the AH.

You want ghouls? Go make some. They get hungry though (and not just for vamp blood), so they probably will have an upkeep charge. You want a 'contact'? Go do some favors (quests) for that nossie in the sewers by the hospital until he will sell you information. Or for the local cop that hangs out by the donut shop.

Dots are tabletop abstractions for these things. In a computer game, there's no need for the abstraction, since the computer can flawlessly keep track of everything you (and every other player) own or have an interest in.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: GinoHieber on February 11, 2014, 10:17:32 am
Post note: click on the thumbnails for a bigger image!


Quote from: Azeroth Geography Lesson by Rychan
You spend a lot of time in Azeroth, you should know some stuff about the world!
 
First, according to this globe in Booty Bay, Azeroth is a planet with only the two continents that we know and love.
 

Quote from: Azeroth Geography Lesson by Rychan

Now, lets talk size. How big is Azeroth?
 
The best way to estimate it would be something like this
I didn't actually try this method because I have a feeling solar panels (http://www.shinesolar.net) is the same everywhere in Azeroth. Does the sun set earlier in Tarren Mills than Barrensl? It should, but I doubt it does by any appreciable amount. In fact, according to the globe in Booty Bay, time of day should be pretty much opposite on the two continents
 
Conclusion: the globe is horribly wrong, the planet is massively larger than shown.
 
So how else can we estimate the size of Azeroth? Direct measurement. I can run a tape measurer behind my wolf as I cross a continent!
 
But they don't make tape measurers. So I did this-
Step 1- find a large, scale map of Lorderon.   is a good one. I assume everything is properly scaled.
 
Step 2- estimate run speed. To do this we need a fixed distance to measure travel time across. But I couldn't find any track and field stadiums in Azeroth. So instead I used the fact that entities magically poof once you are 100 yards away from them. I carefully found the exact spot where I could back up to and cause an NPC to poof. I assumed it was 100 yards from there to him. I ran and measured the time. 8.75 seconds to cover 100 yards on my wolf. Wolf speed, with carrot, is approximately 11.428 yards per second. Pretty fast.
 
Step 3- run a longer distance so that I can find out how many pixels on that map I am moving per second. Or, equivalently, how large a distance each pixel represents. I ran from the Stead to the Lake in Eastern Plaguelands in about 96 seconds (101, actually, but it wasn't exactly straight and i had to dodge a couple NPCs). So it was 1096 yards from the stead to the lake. that was about 125 pixels on the map. So each pixel is 8.768 yards squared.
 
How many pixels from top to bottom? It's 1808 pixels from Strathmore to Booty Bay (vertical component only). This comes to 9.007 Miles
 
So here is Lorderon next to Manhatten.

 

*obviously, all sorts of measurement error could have conspired to make this off by 25% or more.
 
Our next lesson will be on the crazy weather systems of Azeroth. No rain, but huge jungles! Transitions from jungle to desert in 20 feet! Craziness!
Quote from: Rychan
Someone else verified this :


and gave me credit for doing it first.






This is precisely the reason why multiple shards/cities is a bad idea; they'd be way too small! We're talking "cities" on the order of 200 acres here. The entire planet of Azeroth is about the size of San Francisco at scale. For reference, Daggerfall randomly generated a continent that scaled to twice the size of Great Britain.

EVE Online doesn't count because it consists almost entirely of EMPTY space. So any attempts to say it's the largest MMOG based on "being in space" fail because those distances only exist as algorithms. However, it IS a game where you can fly spaceships the size of Manhattan. A single titan is easily the size of Azeroth.


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Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: PANZERBUNNY on March 04, 2014, 04:04:56 am
People think there will be a day and night cycle. That's cute.

There's a good chance, a very good chance that won't be happening.
Title: Re: City Discussion
Post by: Valamyr on March 04, 2014, 04:39:35 pm
People think there will be a day and night cycle. That's cute.

There's a good chance, a very good chance that won't be happening.

Its been confirmed as permanight, and its obviously the way to go in a game about vampires.

Mind you, this is a necro from 2010 so if youre reading early in the thread, there were still things like this in open discussion that got answered since.

Of course, given the way CCP handles the project, its a toss up whether it'll ever materialize.
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