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Old 17th Dec 2010, 01:30 PM   #121
Aggamemnon
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Personally don't think it's a good idea to make catfalls silent to drink. They already have a 20 second timer, and it's the one thing keeping it balanced out.

It's my favourite item, and the one I consider the most powerful, the gulp being it's only counterweight.

BlackJack should be a generic item and swing based arc imo.

I'd prefer something you can always judge than dynamically changing it based on light.
Is there no way to adjust it based on time held like the bow.
The longer the charge, the smaller the arc (of the weapon swing)
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Old 17th Dec 2010, 03:17 PM   #122
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First time 100% agree with Agga.
He has to be absolutely right, doubtless.
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Old 17th Dec 2010, 07:18 PM   #123
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Silent cat is basically guaranteed to make our final version of ProMod. The potion timer will be reduced to 10 or 15 seconds, and the price of the potion will eventually go up (probably to 50) when we make some adjustments to the Thievery money system.

Once again, I point to the fact that Thievery is lopsided vs 4 or more guards. DMing is currently the superior option by a long shot (vs. minimum force play), and this means if you want to win games right now you shoot all the AI and then gangbang the remaining players with blackjacks, even in full light. Unsurprisingly it's still quite effective even against veteran guards.

One of the main issues with ghosting or half-ghosting a level is the fact that guards receive cues every time you do something. Footsteps, arrow sounds, vine sounds, potion sounds. Once you begin to use equipment, this often leads to a chain of equipment use, making it difficult for thieves to go back to any kind of stealth.

For example, a thief bumps into a guard by accident, is firebolted and flashes him to run away. Guard teammates respond by cutting off nearby chokes. The player is then shot twice, uses an invis potion and runs but his footsteps are followed by a third guard. He is tagged by a calculated shot while still invis and is forced to use a speed potion to flee. The standard of guarding has never been better amongst public players and this sort of action is no longer uncommon.

The devs noted that guards shouldn't receive updates on everything a thief does, and made drawing water and vine arrows back silent. When you have enough guards to have a player on every major location, it is a HUGE problem that you're receiving information on any equip usage a thief makes. Gulp sounds are basically a cue to the guard team to not rest until the culprit is found. This kills stealth play. It's no wonder that thieves are using speed heavy loadouts and essentially running through levels to win, because stealth is really unviable on a lot of maps, including stalwarts like Grange. Rushing major loot locations or taking the one hit kills on AI is basically every thief team's standard strategy. And why wouldn't it be? Slow objective taking is ludicrously hard when the guard team has so much information.

So, I ask you to try out these changes and let thieves have a chance of misdirecting the guards and putting moves on without being heard constantly. Let's put some fear and excitement back in the guarding experience.

Regarding the BJ changes, yes it's a tough one. We're still talking over ideas for informing a player of how difficult it will be to KO. My current best idea is to use the left hand sliver of the light gem (black/yellow/red depending on invis %) to determine the radius of a guard's KO zone. This would mean blowing up the lightgem, or perhaps enlarging that section of the lightgem.

Altering the swing arc of the blackjack simply won't work because the primary blackjack swing is straight up, straight down. Any blackjack user worth his salt is capable of dropping guards with uncharged hits.

The elegance of the immortius solution is the fact that it's now very difficult to run up to a guard in full light and smack him down. I think that's quite a reasonable change, considering we'll be making guard equipment slightly less powerful (i.e. firebolts).

It also gives a use back to the helmet, because a thief will need to charge his blackjack to take down a helmeted opponent. This makes him move more slowly, and coupled with needing to get right behind the guard in full light you're going to have a tough time getting that done. Of course, running up behind an unaware guard in full light will still be a KO. And this way, a helmet isn't free licence to run around on the rooves like an idiot. Thieves at 12% visibility or below (i.e. running around in pitch dark) have the full 180 degree KO radius.

Finally, bear in mind that there are a lot of changes still to be made. All I ask is that you keep an open mind and accept the fact that Thievery was not a great deal of fun for thieves in full servers.
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Old 17th Dec 2010, 09:44 PM   #124
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The changes being made cannot be understood in isolation, as we are using a holistic approach to game-balance.

Some changes may not make much sense at this point in time, but trust in Shug, he knows what he is doing.

Last edited by TafferBoy; 18th Dec 2010 at 04:58 PM.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 01:48 AM   #125
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So you mean all this time when i was sneaking around and shit and always failed it wasnt my fault but the game?

Wee
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 05:23 AM   #126
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Cute, but if you were playing in the last year on a full server, then yes.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 06:04 AM   #127
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 Originally Posted by Shug: ( link to post ) 
Rushing major loot locations or...<snip>
Your changes don't prevent this, and now thieves will be silently quaffing catfall pots whilst they do it....
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 07:29 AM   #128
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Our changes don't inhibit rushing... yet. To do that now would be ridiculous, until we've made some serious further guarding changes.

What silent catfall allows is more range for thieves midgame. It's a step in the right direction.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 01:13 PM   #129
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I personally think that all Shug has been implementing is, to quote him:

 Quote:
a step in the right direction.
I really should reinstall TuT and try promod, can't wait for the titan bombs in V23......
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 01:45 PM   #130
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Yes and we have evidence that his doing is true.

At least 3 independent groups were planning, developing and implementing steps to reach the same goal. Some of which were the same. I would say that is enough in such a small community.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 01:52 PM   #131
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three eh? I know of two teams (incl. shug) but not sure about the third.

Also the community would probably grow more if more old players were aware of pro mod. (if anyone could actually track them down).
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 02:42 PM   #132
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Perhaps you were the third team.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 03:38 PM   #133
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hmm,could be I suppose, Underworld could have counted as a third thing - though it was mostly gfx updates by gullonefox, none of these major gameplay changes Shug is implementing.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 06:50 PM   #134
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mages or something like that were planned in TuT 1.7 patch as third team, just reread some messages there.
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Old 18th Dec 2010, 06:52 PM   #135
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They were, but sadly not longer

There were however, a few good suggestions in that thread that we will implement in some form, if we haven't already.

I'd encourage people to continue posting suggestions no matter how fanciful. You never know what could spark inspiration.

Keep in mind the goal of promoting the following ideas.

Stealth for thieves which we define as: Flitting from shadow to shadow. Using knowledge of patrols and hiding spots while using utility items like water and moss rather than gulping an "I win" combination of invis-cat.

For guards, we want to promote team-play and awareness rather than rambo attempts at reclaiming the rooftops with fire and speed. The notion of a guard tracking a thief across the map using investigative skills and incomplete clues, or attentively patrolling an area without relying on AI is foremost on the agenda.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 01:23 AM   #136
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well, i still cant get rid of my idea, about more loot you carry with you, more noise/louder footsteps you make. You would need to save some catfalls for exit.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 02:29 AM   #137
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Right. The problem with that is we want to make stealth easier to accomplish without equipment usage, so making loot bearing thieves noisier is problematic in that regard
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 10:02 AM   #138
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I don't think a thief should be penalised for doing 'well' on the loot stakes. More loot to make more noise is a poor idea.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 04:13 PM   #139
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^what Fixxxer said. It's a nice idea in terms of realism, but it's punishing thieves for doing well.

What would be interesting would be an indicator of how much loot a thief has. So when a guard sees you, he wouldn't give up so quickly if he knew you were carrying 1000+ in loot. Like, a bag that grows as you loot? That's a bit more complicated, but I'm just throwing the idea out there.

And/or, you could have reduced speed for each 100 of loot you carry. Nothing drastic, just very slight speed reductions.

I don't really think any of these will make the game more fun. Probably more challenging, but not more fun. Fun would be the ability to pickpocket potions (among other things) out of human guards.

In terms of balance, hindering a thief because he has a lot of loot seems... kind of overpowering for the guards.

And also, about stealth without the use of equipment... For me particularly, I don't usually spam potions or equipment to try and get a tough obj. I find that my equipment gets used the most in escapes, when dealing with guards directly. I would be very much for skill being a part of stealth. A few ideas would be lockpick level noises. Your lockpick noise level could be reduced depending on how visible you are, or even better, you could have a minigame for lockpicking and based on how well you do, you'd get different levels of sound. Again, pretty fancy, but I feel it would really contribute towards stealth.

I can't really think of much else stealth related, I really feel as if map design is the key here. There are maps that, if you know all the entrances and the best way of using these entrances, you can sneak in pretty much everywhere unaided. But there are others that there's really no other option other than direct confrontation (breakout and the like).

We'll see what you guys come up with.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 05:07 PM   #140
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Yeah I understand the points, but surely with the sound changes, catfall gulps will only be heard within a certain distance, and as the timer stands at 20 seconds, it's not needed to remove it, as it's a potion you can use away from target to get in and out with easily enough time to do it in.

Plus, quaffing a catfall in earshot of a guard instantly puts them on the defensive, even if you don't mean to attack
If you remove the gulp from cat, guards will constantly be aggressive imo since it's better than never knowing a thief is coming at you (no warning).

It would be detrminental to gameplay to add any sort of minigame. Most locks are in high risk area's and having any sort of distraction or tooltip to messwith would be too much to take care of with roaming guards.
Basing it on invisibility also detracts since you can't always control this.

We can safely assume, that all the thief side know how to pick a lock, without even concentrating. Which totally goes against having to do more work than simply getting to the door and having picks.
The only alternative would be to have different types of lockpicks:

Crowbar. Loud, less time.
Picks. Standard Noise, and time.
Locksmith's kit. Least Noise, slightly longer time. costs more than standard (say 120)
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 06:33 PM   #141
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Regarding picks:
We've discussed minigame for sound level and crouch modifier for softer/silent but slower picking.

What we thought was that a simple system really is best. This is obviously heavily map-dependent for balance, but who would take the risk of picking loudly at all? Having a very soft general picking eliminates the confusion of multiple items, and brings us back to guards having genuine risk on their choices. Leave your area to roam or pursue a thief, and you won't receive warning that someone is there from 30m away.

There's still quite a loud click to begin picking, and picking mines carries quite a way, making it risky to remove traps. But in general, guards requiring line of sight on locked doors is a breath of fresh air and much more in line with the Thievery of old.

On catfall:
Thieves don't have enough tools for stealth right now. If you have better suggestions, I'm all ears.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 07:07 PM   #142
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decoy potion, when for example thers a guard after you, you drink it, and it summons a decoy thief, who keeps runnings, but you getting 2-4 seconds invisibility to bring yourself to safety.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 07:36 PM   #143
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I'm thinking along a variation of moss arrows, only for climbing. The area affected would be climbable. It would work like normal moss too, hidden in shadows, visible in light. It would only work on wood to prevent new map glitches and all that. I don't know if it should be silent.

It would be a kind of "stealth" rope/moss arrow. And if you think about it, there are dozens of uses for it. Escapes, hiding, agility maneuvers, etc. What say ye?
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 08:14 PM   #144
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 Originally Posted by Sly: ( link to post ) 
What say ye?
nutin, untill ye say something about my idea first
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 08:55 PM   #145
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 Originally Posted by Sly: ( link to post ) 
I'm thinking along a variation of moss arrows, only for climbing. The area affected would be climbable. It would work like normal moss too, hidden in shadows, visible in light. It would only work on wood to prevent new map glitches and all that. I don't know if it should be silent.

It would be a kind of "stealth" rope/moss arrow. And if you think about it, there are dozens of uses for it. Escapes, hiding, agility maneuvers, etc. What say ye?
I think that's a little out of sync with the whole risk/cost/reward system. Vine obviously is a tad risky; hearing the arrow hit, seeing the arrow fly, seeing the vine, taking off the vine - but your reward is great; escape option, entry-point, off the beaten path movement.

What would be the risk/cost of climbing moss? If you make it cost a lot of gold then people would just use Vine as it doesn't really create any additional options that a Vine wouldn't.

I'm guessing this is the same answer as to why climbing gloves will never be considered in Thievery.
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Old 19th Dec 2010, 09:31 PM   #146
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I'm all for improving stealth, but I don't think everything has to be stealthy. You won;t always need to hide your actions. If two guards run off after another thief, then you are typically free to be as quick and as noisy as you like.

One of the more out there ideas a while ago was having perks for the players. With a few specific choices for sides.

Silent steps.
Silent picks.
Silent bow draw.
Same move speed whether weapons out etc...
Bit more life.
Faster charged weapon.
Cheaper gear/higher starting loot.
Automatic pickup loot.

Could allow a single pick per player.
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Old 20th Dec 2010, 03:10 AM   #147
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Pretty much making an entirely new game there! Good ideas though. Weren't perks a part of Nightblades development?

The only thing I can come up with to follow on your point about all movements being silent Aggs is splitting the thieves movements up in two.

Loud mode and Quiet mode. Loud mode would be brash, fast and athletic - never fully hidden but faster. Quiet mode would be just that, quieter, stealthier picking (everything, from footsteps to opening doors, to picking locks to gulping pots)

They'd be a cooldown period of 2-3 seconds before switching between the two movement modes.
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Old 20th Dec 2010, 05:54 AM   #148
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We had perks too already. Plus lots of other stuff aswell.
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Old 20th Dec 2010, 08:35 AM   #149
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 Originally Posted by Aggamemnon in the shoutbox:
Problem with making it more stealthy for thieves, something Dalai was keen to comment on, was that it's no fun at all for guards to never see, hear, or come into contact with a thief player.
This has been raised a number of times by Dalai over the years, and as part of the theory of developing this sort of game it's very important.

Our starting point was trying to swing the game away from where it was actually crushing any enjoyment in playing 5 guards. Plenty of action for guards, very little achievement for thieves outside of killing everything.

Honestly, putting in more stealth tools for thieves won't make this game a snorefest. Earlier iterations of the game had a lot more potential for stealth when players were new. Sound configs weren't optimised, nobody knew the best hiding spots and significant levels of inexperience meant thieves could waltz around inside buildings far more easily.

Yet hardly anybody decided that they would play a 'ghost' style which stresses never being seen or heard. Ultimately, the players are the ones who create the atmosphere and we have far too many thieves that crave action to bore guards.

At some point we just need to own up to the fact that this is a stealth multiplayer experience, and put in the required features to make it work. Because it wasn't working properly when we started.
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Old 20th Dec 2010, 09:56 AM   #150
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Yes, it is the players that make this game, and is probably the Achilles Heel of Thievery.

Aggs, you can't make every guard physically contact a thief every round, the game would be destroyed for the thief which isn't what the promod is about. Its pro-thief.

Hypothetical scenario - 2 decent thieves versus 4 decent guards - the thieves manage to win without dying once. Only one thief was seen during the entire round by one of the guards and was even hit a couple of times by them but in the end got away, got a hp pot, maybe a chicken and a cucumber and was alright. They eventually exited, epic game for the thieves, but for 3 of the guards, that was one big snore fest.

The next round one of those guards unfortunately doesn't make it onto the thief team and ends up with a similar round... so then boredom-quits.

The roll-reversal of that is that both thieves are found and destroyed. Bad game for the thieves, good game for the guards as most of them probably saw a bit of action, and no one was bored! Only... angry
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