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Everything posted by Tuhalu

  1. Maybe you can build this into the difficulty levels? At the introductory difficulty, you get five of each type in your initial 15 and at least one of each type in your starting five. It also gives at least 6 of each sex. At the normal difficulty, you get a minimum of three of each type in your initial 15 and at least one of each type in your starting five. It also gives at least 4 of each sex. At the hardest difficulty, everything is totally random and its time to harden up. If you don't do that, I think "Balanced Start" is a pretty clear description of what the option is. Or "Randomised Start" if you make the balanced start the default. Another thing that makes getting past the first 50 years hard is too many Infertile heros and your normally fertile heros randomly deciding to not have children for long stretches of time. I saw that you are looking at making Infertility much rarer, but I suspect you need to look at how strong bountiful is compared to normal fertility and if normal fertility is good enough. If you have 2 or 3 keeps failing to have more than 2 or 3 babies over the first 20 years, it is really quite hard to keep going as your population just implodes.
  2. I think Seeds are mostly fine, but they don't form into Cradles anywhere near often enough. I had a keep defence where there were 4 Cradles and about 15 or so Seeds to begin with. None of those Seeds ever got together to form a Cradle, even if I left them alone where they could see me, but not reach me. Even among the Advanced Seeds I've only ever seen them form a Cradle once and I'm halfway through my second playthrough already. The thing about Seeds (and Cradles) is that they represent uncontrolled growth and right now they do anything but. Twitchers tend to be super Uncommon. They are quite dangerous with their ability to swap places with anyone they know the location of and then stun someone nearby with their knockback attack. But you only see 2 or maybe 3 of them in an entire map. It should be more like 3-5 per map as the game progresses. Ruptures need to scale their damage a tiny bit more. Not a heck of a lot, just one or two points. The armor corrosion ability is pretty nasty if you let it burn you though. Where I think the biggest change could be made is to introduce a new rank of Cadence between the regular and advanced types. In the second hundred years, there is a lot of dead time where the enemies really aren't getting any harder (just different). With a middle difficulty set of cadence, you could keep the challenge up in that second century without having to jump right into the Cadences end-game forms. This would also mean that you don't have to make the most basic Cadence quite so strong as they are appearing earlier and being superceded faster.
  3. Actually, I'm pretty sure they stated that the FTL-style always right answer was something they didn't want to do. They preferred to have things be vague, but sort of obvious. Usually the option at the top is the "riskiest" and the option at the bottom is the least risky, but you can sort of tell by the way it is worded which is which. To answer the original post, I've gotten as many great results as terrible ones. I've had corruption reduced in a region, bear strength added to everyone in my retinue (which can take the number of positive traits past 3 for that generation), gotten the patriotism personality on a hero (very good) and had a sagewright get the purple haze status (+4 Intuition). If you feel like it, you can save scum a bunch until you see some good results from your events. You can save scum for more babies and better coming-of-age results on hero personalities too.
  4. Recently, Brad was talking about getting more player power into the research system. Currently, levelling your heros and relics gives you 90% of your real power in battles and is the primary factor in determining research capability. It is the sole source of intuition. It is a major source of HP, accuracy and damage (both through hero stats and relic stats). It is a roughly equal source to research for armor, resistance and evasion. The major benefits of research are in armor, resistance and evasion. Largely through actual armor and you only benefit in armor and evasion OR evasion and resistance. You can get some damage upgrades in weapons, but they are generally sidegrades or worse (depending on the class). You can research various situational items that can help you out, but you can only take one (or two for alchemists by mid-game). There are some special research projects that turn up after the first half of the game, but they have decidely minor effects on your combat abilities. The national armor research project adds a single point of armor to each class. The others are indirect benefits (more xp, more fertility, longer lives). There is definitely room to take some power out of the levelling system and put it into research options. For instance (and these are just examples): * Some kind of accuracy increase through researching "combat training" that you can only pick up after certain years. Maybe you'd need X of each type of Cadence to use it. Maybe it would be per class. Accuracy from levelling could be a little less high. It would become available when the first of the Advanced Cadence appear. * Class based training. One for each class. Caberjacks get stronger, etc. Possibly multiple levels that appear after a hero in that class hits a certain level. For instance, levels 3 and 7 (to give some of the non-skill levels a good reason to exist). It could be a percentage based increase. Relic damage and crit damage could be reduced to compensate, giving the cadence based weapons a small boost overall. * Some kind of base health increase. Maybe you research how to feed your heros better and that translates to better health. Or maybe it is just a flat increase attached to your armor. This would mean smaller health increases as part of levelling. * Research into item use that allows you to equip an extra item. * Research into an equipable item that lets you improve your resistance (no such thing exists). * Research into better research techniques that raises the benefit from intuition across the board. Xzibit heard you like to research and put some research in your research so you can research researching while you research.
  5. You'll notice it when your Slow Reveler has a Hangover. Two squares per action. So incredibly painful.
  6. I'm finding situational use for a lot of the items. - If you don't have Tranquility on a hero, that can be fixed with a Steady Hander. It's also great for maxing out your hit rate early on and later when Advanced Wrinklers, Lapses and Seeds come along. A Tranquil Alchemist with a Steady Hander can throw potions at max range with extremly high accuracy. - If you are going to fight Lapses and/or Wrinklers, then anyone who isn't a Hunter gets Wunderpants. You can usually keep Hunters out of that kind of trouble, but not Caberjacks and sometimes not Alchemists either. - If you don't need the Steady Hander on your Hunters, then the Dodge Stocking is pretty nice because you already have a pretty good dodge rate. - I use the Health Potion and Ultralixirs when first going up against Bulwarks and Cradles because one hit from them can put a character next to death's door and you can't always plan it so they are stun-locked or killed in one round. Its also great in the defence missions where you have to plow into huge swarms fast if you want to win well. For instance, I had on Ultralixir on each of my two Alchemists in the final battle. - Vitaliband can be an OK option if you don't want to waste time using a potion, especially on Caberjacks with their high HP values. I personally didn't use it much. I know some people really like Sponge Stones, but I just couldn't get into them. The healing they do is only really useful against basic Seeds (and Bulwarks when you have Refined Armor), but those guys die so easily anyway. I didn't like Experience Scarfs either as 10% extra XP really doesn't feel like enough to be worth it next to anything else. Maybe if Experience Scarfs automatically applied to trainees they would be worth having. Having said that, I do think it would be nice to unlock an extra item for everyone at some point. It's one of the good ways to ramp up the power of heros through research and it gives you more chances to play around with exotic items.
  7. In reply to some of your comments: - I haven't had to reassign a skill when I lost and regained a level due to Lapses. I actually went to reassign a skill and the game had remembered it was assigned and kept it that way. It was merely disabled while I had no access to it. Normally equipped Wunderpants when going up against Lapses though. - Caberjacks Kill Rage has an Accuracy penalty. For every consecutive kill, you get a cumulative 10% penalty to Accuracy. It's hard to get more than 5 kills in a row because of this. It even remembers the penalty over multiple rounds, as long as you make no failed attacks. - Seeds can do more than one damage, it's just that they tend to do glancing blows and their normal damage is obsoleted by the first regular armor upgrade.
  8. You can equip your Standards and Regents any time you want. Just click on the Keep or Crucible, then click on the Heros name, then select the Info flag. You are then in the exact same window you can access before and during combat. You can also access it through the Heros option in the Chalice screen. There are sublists for Regents and Standards there from which you can click on their Info flag.
  9. That depends on which bonuses you get on your outer five regions. If you randomly get the one that makes researching buildings twice as fast and plonk your first or second researched building on it, the rest are going to come really fast. Edit: I'm in the middle of a campaign now where I had the global research building bonus and the local sagewright research bonus and was able to get all the buildings made by year 58. This included 2 or 3 rounds of extra Heros to try and get some useful heros and fill positions. I think I might have gotten Healing Potions too.
  10. It would also be really awesome if you could set your active team at any time instead of only right before battle. It could be a third tab in the Chalice window along with Heros and Research. Having people tagged as "Active Team" is really useful when you go to set a new Regent, Standard or Sagewright, because you know you are going to have to find another guy to fill that spot and plan appropriately. But there is no way to update that between fights and so you can lose track of who you have earmarked for those positions.
  11. There are a few maps that have some evasion style cover in them. I only played fights in the outer-ring of regions because I didn't lose any until around year 250. Having said that, the Ebbot Marsh regions have some reed looking objects on them. If you end your move in one, you get the "Obscured" buff which increases your evasion. These reeds are basically exactly the same thing that the Fertilizer Flask skill the Alchemist can get at Level 8 creates. As stated by others, the maps aren't really random, but they do add some variety. They seem to be using the same map in the same region, but the starting position can be different and blocking objects can change which parts of the region you have access to. From my memory of the TeamStreams, they have about 6 different starts and layouts for each map. The start for your characters can seem pretty bad, but that just makes it all the sweeter when you reach the end of the game and you have some really strong heros. For instance, I had a Caberjack with Bear Strength, Quick, Wily and Stalwart. With his level 10 relic and level 10 skill Kill Rage, he'd go sometimes smash through 5 cadence in one round. One of my first heros in that bloodline had Hawk Eye, Strong Willed, Puny, Reveler, Cocky and Rebel. Almost completely useless! Although I did love Hawk Eye for seeing them before they saw me.
  12. There ain't no justice. There is another case in which a gay couple can work out. A couple has recently had a number of children and then the partner dies. The regent is pretty old and their fertility has dropped through the floor. You can pick a same sex partner with a good personality to try and pass those on to the children. I actually did that a couple of times in my own first playthrough.
  13. Just finished a full play through and I didn't find this to be the case. Advanced Seeds have 30% evasion and Slippery which gives them 20% extra evasion against hunters. Advanced Lapses have 45% evasion against everyone. Advanced Twitchers have 40% evasion against everyone. Level 10 characters have 120% accuracy base, so you have a chance to miss any of those 3 unless you use Steady Hander or have a character with the Tranquil personality trait. If your heros tend to always have Tranquil, you've done well and reap the rewards of being deadly accurate by not missing much. If you don't, you compensate with Steady Hander or miss/glance sometimes. Additionally, your Caberjacks with their Kill Rage have a built in debuff. For each consecutive attack that kills its target, you get an extra action point, but lose a cumulative 10% accuracy. It doesn't take many kills before you are forced to miss and reset your accuracy. The only class that gets around this to a good extent are the Alchemists. Throwing bombs ignores the targets evasion, so all that matters is how far away the spot you are aiming at is. At your max range (7 squares) you'll only hit the spot 60% of the time with no accuracy bonuses. If you play well and outlevel the cadence, you'll get periods of the game where you are hitting 100% of the time for significant portions of the game. Conversely, if your levelling isn't quite up to par or you have the Nervous trait (causes an accuracy penalty) on a character or the enemies are mostly Seeds, Lapses or twitchers, then you won't hit all the time. That seems about right to me.
  14. That's probably due to the characters age, shown as a Status. Those Alchemists are probably Mature Age. Young Age = +Dex, +Fertility, -Intelligence, -Intuition Mature Age = +Str, +HP Old Age = +Intelligence, +Intuition, - Str, -Dex, - Fertility IIRC, all modifiers are generally set up as a percentage modifier.
  15. The timeline in the game is pretty functional, but there are some areas that could use improvement in my opinion. Icon Overlap If events occur in too short a space of time the icons can overlap severely. Currently the only workaround that will let you see each icon is to be very careful about how fast and from which side you mouse over the overlapping icons from. Mousing over from the left usually gets the first event and from the right usually gets the second event. There seems to be plenty of room at the top of the screen, so why not have the second icon be bumped down a bit so it is easy to click on? That's pretty common solution in timeline charts. Alternatively, you could add some options to allow the player to set the scale of the timeline. Sometimes you do want to see the full 20 years worth of events that are currently shown, but other times you'll only care about the last 5 years or so. Timeline Scrolling The timeline eventually allows events to scroll off the screen. Once they have, you can never go back and read them again. I feel like it would be a great feature (and an alternative viewing method for events) to be be able to open up a window that listed all the events from the entire timeline in point form with a scrollbar like the heros lists. This would have the added benefit of saving you from having to mouse-over each entry to see what it has to say. You'd just read it like a story. Ideally you would be able to print the timeline out to text giving players a starting point from which to write an embellished history of their game, but that's another idea! Optimization I can't be sure, but it seems like the game never removes an icon once it is added to the timeline. It just scrolls them off the screen to the left as they get older. If that's correct, then it is trying to move every icon it has made since Year 1 Day 1 whenever you advance the timeline. That's going to be pretty hard on your computing resources. If that's the case, then the fix is obvious. Remove those events from the timeline when they are too old. That looks to be about 21 years old currently (the timeline shows 20 years at a time at an given resolution).
  16. Some times you'll need to "Recruit New Heros" with your Research. When they turn up, they'll be fairly young, but ready to fight. Some of them might also be useful for putting in keeps. If you can find some young heros with the bountiful trait, that'll help your second generation a lot too. I've had some pairs produce up to 14 heros in their lifetime by having them both be bountiful. Like the other guys said, you really have to work with what you have and judge how quickly you can do certain things. Because of the strong random factor, there is no real perfect start. Which is nice because you can get a lot of replayability out of it.
  17. What if more standards provided training for different periods in a heros life rather than all training happening in the first 15 years? The first standard helps for years 0-15 and has the normal effect on a heros personality traits. The second helps with years 16-30 and has no effect on personality traits. The third helps with years 31-45 and has no effect on personality traits. The fourth helps with years 46-60 and has no effect on personality traits. The first standard would still be super important, but further standards would naturally be reduced in importance as they benefit less of a heros lifetime. Additionally, a regent would get no benefit from any standard while they are installed in a keep. So regents that are installed at a later age will have more experience to impart to their children than super young baby machines.
  18. Maybe the game needs an "ignore" function for unwanted heros? So you just click a tickbox or something and they are hidden away. Then you have another tickbox for "show hidden" that makes all the hidden heros temporarily visible if you become desperate for more people. Hidden heros would have their deaths supressed on the timeline too. Because if you didn't care about their life, why would you care about their death?
  19. They are playing super cautiously and only attacking when they can kill all the visible enemies and then stealth again. It's a game of patience and positioning. This is exactly why the expansion for XCOM introduced stealth enemies that can pick on snipers and the special goop containers to encourage players to push through fast. Because players need to be encouraged to play aggressively when the stakes are kind of high.
  20. Weren't they also going to have the ability to retire regents so they could return to fighting (as long as you can replace them with an heir)? Whatever happened to that?
  21. How about a making one of the enemies a stealth/alert type? They wander around stealthily. When a hunter tries to sneak past one (or vice versa) they get detected. Then the guy does an alert and attracts all the cadence within a certain radius. Another way to go about things would be to have an enemy that is hard to hit from a distance. There is one that is kind of transparent and attacks from range right? That one could do it (unless it's the aging cadence, in which case pick something else).
  22. If same sex couples get a free adoption, how quickly would it happen? If it's too fast, then you are actually incentivized to form same sex couples temporarily. You might even wind up with a dedicated keep for churning out free babies.
  23. I hope they more or less go the way of making all three stats relevant for sagewrights. You can still dump your asthmatics in there, but you'd rather dump an asthmatic with great stats than one with crummy stats, so you may well be more careful about who you cram in there.
  24. I think this game has something useful to say about Eugenics. Eugenics has often been used as an excuse for scientific racism and taking reproduction rights away from undesirables. Both either by law, by mutilation or by murder. That has colored all our assumptions about what Eugenics is and its purpose. In Massive Chalice, we need not assume that any of those evil means are imposed on the population or that the activity is automatically vile. The only thing we need assume is that some small fraction of the people have submitted their lives to the will of the Immortal King in return for a chance to fight back against the corruption of the Cadence. If we allow that the people involved in this "eugenics program" are doing so by their own choices, does it continue to be an evil thing? Arguably, it's still tragic, but I think evil is not being done. Now my assumptions may well not be written directly into the story that the game presents. It may be useful to leave a great deal of amibiguity. Maybe the player is allowing everyone to marry for love? We don't know because the game doesn't tell us. Maybe there are specific bloodline traits that must be present for the Chalice to work with, so any union that would not result in those traits cannot be allowed? We don't know because the game won't tell us. On a different tack, isn't forcing the player to marry outside of immediate family a form of negative Eugenics? In the real world, we learned that children born from close family are prone to genetic defects. This has lead society to form the moral opinion that such marriages were bad, because babies that don't live long, live with deformity, are prone to insanity or are otherwise unfortunate are sad. Apparently, this is completely fine to have in the game, because it aligns with todays moral norms. For an example from another game, how many people here have played Fire Emblem: Awakening? That game is also a tactical RPG. Characters develop relationships in the course of fighting together against a common enemy. Depending on which relationship comes into full flower first, the player can control who falls in love and winds up having future babies. These future babies turn up as teenagers who have travelled back in time and then join your army. Depending on who their parents were, they can have some unique and powerful abilities. The player has full control of who marries who by controlling their relationships, but nobody cries "eugenics!" about that game. Maybe because the parents have to be in love first before they can make babies? Maybe because it's not a core mechanic? Maybe a bit of both? Anyway, that's about all I have to say about that. Good luck finding a way to present a cool gameplay mechanic without anyone accusing you of promoting an evil agenda. This is the internet after all!
  25. How about creating some new heros when the player builds a new keep? You've established the Chalice's power in a new area and it is able to scan the new area for promising bloodlines or previously unknown members of current bloodlines. For whatever reason, the heros the chalice finds in a newly held territory would be around 15-30 years old each. You get some young blood into your forces, but maybe some new blood too. The injection of new blood could be like 3-5 new heros, with a possibility of one or two being from a new family. This avoids the problem of trying to grow pre-generated babies. It also gives an interesting set of choices in the early game. If your gene pool is good enough, maybe you choose to concentrate on research and new equipment. Alternatively, if the genepool is a bit weak, you may choose to build a keep ASAP for a chance to get some good new blood in. Also, I think this could help with the late game a bit. Currently, with no new families after the first generation, you'll have a hard time getting more than three families into keeps to reproduce before they die out. And since you have three basic classes, you are going to have to build families around the three classes or lose them. From there, you could choose to make hybrid class keeps from the existing families or put a subfamily into a new keep so that you get more of that class. After a while, it all stabilises and you stop making interesting choices between families (until the corruption kills off a keep or the family dies out anyway!). But if you have a new family turn up, you get some new options. Does the new blood marry into a family and potentially improve that bloodline? Do you put the new blood in a new keep and bring their heros up from scratch (no relics, no or few bonus levels from parent training, but they can wear some of the later game gear)? Maybe the new blood is terrible and you just use them as demon fodder or researchers. Of course, there is a limit on how many new territories you can build a keep in. At some point they'll all be under your control or fully lost to the corruption. So the ability to get new blood in by adding a new keep to the land is lost towards the end of the game.
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