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Evaluation of the stolen crystal, and my idea for how it could be have been done

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Trevelyan, Aug 9, 2010.

  1. Trevelyan

    Trevelyan Guest

    This idea is to incorporate many different character types and subsequently reach new players who may not attend most events. Lag as an issue, within this idea, can be counteracted by spreading the event (and players) out amongst different subserver areas (towns).

    Condensed and merged from another thread. Rather long, so scroll down a bit for the main parts if you want!

    I think it is *wrong* that the outcome of events cannot be changed. Calandryll talked about this and worked it into the scenarios of old. Even simple outcomes, such as whether orcs or savages spawn in future, are at least some form of player intervention.

    If there are events specific to one shard, there is the arguement that the outcome won't be known. But even then I would disagree; events that involve players should be totally influenced by players. Imagine everyone decided to just give up and go home - the crystal would be stolen anyway and nothing gets destroyed. Player participation is incidental; you can't change anything.

    This event wasn't specific to one shard, it was global. I tried to kill things for a while but knowing my spells did barely any damage, and that the crystal would be gone anyway, I decided to try and look for dead guards. Running off and looting the dead is, really, the only gainful thing to do in such events.

    One simplification of how this could have been done differently:

    • Blackrock golems drop multiple "fragments of a blackrock golem" on their corpse with no additional loot (I have to say I get a bit fed up of finding unjustifiably crap loot on something that would have no reason to carry any).
    • An alternative is to make the corpses dispense said fragments when double clicked, to each character who had looting rights (thus party members also included; this would benefit healers).
    • Daemons should have "eaten" the guards; body parts could be found (not rare, but relevant) as well as armour pieces, distributed in a far fairer way
    • Top x attackers receive something slightly extra, and different
    • Dispenser at the end stays for 24 hours and only dispenses items to people who had looting rights on ANY monster from that event

    With mechanics changes like this there are plenty of better options, such as tallies for people at events (an item that, which clicked, acts as a "register" of who attends) with checkpoints along the way (speech detectors to see who speaks a certain word at a certain place, something to record people who appear on screen or something else to see who double clicks it).

    However, I think the above list works well because it encourages people to at least try and attack things. But an even *better* way would be to have win and lose conditions. If you are having an event on *all* shards, make the number of players count for something; smaller shards may lose an event, larger ones would not. Participation has to be recognised, and not just through an item dispenser.

    The notion that simply going to an event is wrong. Attending for items only is not ridiculous, but that shows that the event itself is broken in design. In fact, I don't blame people for "expecting" items given how, since 2003, items have dropped fairly regularly at events in some way or other. Even before that, in Scenarios, you had Orcish bows, tribal spears etc (that, wrongly I think, still spawn now)

    So things that will help events to be more fun and dynamic:

    • Allow players to influence the event to some extent at the very least
    • Distribution of items to reflect player participation and effort (with less predictability over numbers or how to obtain said items)
    • Make things worth doing. Fighting something when you're losing already is both not fun and not tactically justifiable.

    I am all for events being open to all, but I really dislike people from other shards attending Europa events. However, I don't blame them one bit; it is both easy to do and profitable. If someone from another shard takes the time to build a character, however, as well as perhaps knowing something of that shard's fiction, then they may as well be playing that shard anyway and totally deserve anything they work hard to get.

    Also, I think the MinaxsWandStolenSOU.. I mean the Replica Display.. is quite ugly and doesn't fit well in (my) collection. Perhaps Saphireena could come and "improve" this art somewhat :D

    Anyway, my re-worked idea for this latest event, and the scouts:

    Example: Daemons invading Brit castle to steal the crystal. All of this takes place over the course of a month.

    Part 1 - Crystal is unearthed
    • Fiction is posted
    • Scouts are seen in towns:
      • Single scout appears in a random town.
      • Not defeating a scout within 30 minutes of it spawning results in additional scouts spawning in the town.
      • 30 minutes later and another random town is "scouted".
      • As a result, over time, scouts will appear in many towns. Already visited areas within towns will not be visited again and an attempt will be made to visit a new area instead.
      • This continues until Britain is scouted and a daemon has "found" - or come in contact with - Brit castle.
      • Items: fragments of orders on the scouts - each corpse has all parts of a single order; can construct whats going on from having all parts of this

    This should not take any longer than a week.

    At this point, the attempt to steal the crystal begins. It starts with an event at the beginning and lasts for a week (or month, not decided on this) or until the crystal has been stolen.
    Part 2 - Attacking the castle
    • Invasion forces persistently invade Britain from 4 hours after serverup until 4 hours before server down
    • Daemons and blackrock golems spawn in random locations in Britain and attempt to go toward the castle.
    • As forces progress, parts of the castle walls are "weakened" by Blackrock Golems throwing rocks.
      • Attracting their attention will stop them attacking the walls.
    • Once the walls get to 0 hitpoints, forces will then attempt to reach inside the castle walls, at which point the spawn moves forward.
      • Reconstructing the walls pushes spawn back. This may be best done after the spawn has retreated for the night; good for late night or early bird players.

    Multiple types of character are needed:

    • 1 defender point is received by characters who get looting rights, 3 points for the top 3 damagers.
    • Carpenters can repair walls
      • Double clicking one of the tools by the defense will start your character "repairing" (minimum 70 skill needed)
      • Every second, an attempt is made to repair the wall
        • Chance to repair is based on skill (70.0 = 50%, GM = 100%)
        • 25% Time Bonus for stonemasonary
      • Requires wood and Carpentry skill to repair wall
      • Takes 1 wood per attempt at repairing 1 defense "hitpoint"
      • 1 crafter point is attributed to the character
    • Carpenters can reconstruct walls
      • Double clicking one of the tools by the defense will start your character "repairing" (minimum 70 skill needed)
      • Requires wood and Carpentry to construct
      • Bonus for stonemasons who use granite: construction completes faster
      • Every 2 seconds, an attempt is made to construct the wall
      • 1 crafter point is attributed to the character
      • Chance to construct a part of the wall is based on skill (70.0 = 50%, GM = 100%)
    • Healers can "resurrect" NPC guards
      • Characters who are in the healing area (chapel, in Castle British) can resurrect NPC "ghosts"
        • Works like regular resurrection attempts on players
        • Success results in one of (up to 15) NPC guards being placed at the front line of defense in the castle
        • 1 healer point is attributed to characters who attempt a resurrection and fail (minimum skill: 80)
        • 5 healer points are attributed to whoever successfully resurrects the guard
      • Healer points are attributed to characters in the healing area for every 5 minutes that they are there: (real healing skill / 100) + (Compassion level)
    • Blacksmiths, bowyers and tailors can "supply" NPC guards
      • Characters who are in the blacksmith area (armoury in Castle British) can supply NPC guards
        • Making specific armour and weapons and depositing them in a chest will add them (internally) to a "list" of top 50 items of a certain type (plate helm, plate tunic, leather tunic, Halberd etc).
        • If the item is not good enough, it will not be added, although it will still be taken.
        • When a ghost is resurrected (see above), they will "report" to the armoury
        • They will then take a set of the "best" overall weighted armour out of the chest and use it (can be runic made).
        • The person who crafted the items will be attributed with 1 point per item chosen, providing they are in the area. -OR- A complete set must be made and submitted, the best set of which overall is chosen.

        [*]What is used will change over time. More archers may be used if better leather armour and bows are made, more melee soldiers may be used if the platemail and weapons are better. There will always be some of each, but the distribution may change depending on what is available.
        [*]Players will not know what the "best" items in the list are. Some properties will be more desireable than others, so characters cannot simply submit lots of runic armour, when something at the lower end of the spectrum may be more useful.

    However, not *all* of this stuff should be told to players. This has been a mistake in the past; instead players should try and figure it out. All that would be told is:

    - Fiction for daemons seeking the crystal (before the scouts)
    - Fiction for a call to arms (accompanied by a system wide message one evening) for characters of all backgrounds and professions.
    - After the message is issued to go to the castle on a given night, (ideally the evening of the day after the daemons have been found - so a minimum of 24 hours), an event takes place to tell everybody that the daemons have found Britain castle on that shard. At the event, the EM's roleplay character on that shard explains that daemons will attack and that crafters and healers will also be needed to repair and construct defenses, heal soldiers etc.

    - It will be told that reinforcements from Queen Zhah are expected but will take a (week, month, fortnight) to assemble. Until they arrive, an attempt is going to be made to take the crystal.

    - The EM can organise people, answer questions and, once everyone seems ready, the spawn can be started. The EM can visit each of the locations and explain that time spent in those areas, as well as higher skills and abilities, will help them to succeed.

    The next day, on each EM site or on UO.com, clarification can be made as to what happens outside of fiction (IE, higher skills = more points).

    After a week, if the daemons have not penetrated the defenses and stolen the crystal (and they will get harder each day), the shard is considered to have "won". That shard takes a different event path; Reinforcements arrive and the daemons retreat. However, the leader of the reinforcements could steal the crystal and sell it to Minax or whatever and replace the one in the castle with a fake one, if the crystal MUST be stolen. The reinforcements should provide more fiction to strengthen, or strain, relations between Dawn and Zhah.

    If the shard loses, everyone who contributed over 10 points receives a case. If the shard "wins", Dawn rewards everyone for their efforts, with the top point scorers receiving rewards from the dispenser:

    • Everyone with any points receives a basic sash or something for recognition along with a rolled up parchment that shows how many points that character received.
    • Higher points mean an additional reward depending on what you did.
    • Top 3 scorers for each shard in each area receive unique items for their categories, along with recognition in each of the areas that they helped in.

    The dispenser stays up for a week (to make sure everyone who participated gets their reward).

    I hope that this thread generates some great ideas and can be used to show what sort of reactions people have to both this idea and the last event.
  2. R Traveler

    R Traveler Babbling Loonie
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Jul 15, 2005
    Likes Received:
    I like it, but it too complex to get it working.
  3. You put a lot of thought into it. I read it twice. Its a good idea but way to complicated.

    Why? Most of the players just want the dang rare drop. Or a drop only they get.

    Structuring it better is really no better then people just having fun with it. Kinda go with the flow. But people dont go with the flow. Dont fool yourself thinking better structure would bring more enjoyment. Its sad.

    Bottom line, greed and I want.

    You could have the silkiest smooth flow of an event the incorporates cooking to cleansing winds. And you know what.... "I didnt get the trinket of blah blah" still will surface.

    Create a random enviroment. Stop giving out details. Let us explore and find.
  4. Green Mouser

    Green Mouser Guest

    I think the EM's took it out.....just saying :p
  5. Trevelyan

    Trevelyan Guest

    Too random and players *will* get lost. If you explain that players need to do something to prevent/accomplish something and that if they don't do it, something different happens, you give them a choice.

    The idea above I thought out as best I could to reward players for actual work. With regards to healers, people with a dedicated healer playstyle would be rewarded in a different way from warriors. Crafters also (and being there is necessary, perhaps choosing pieces of equipment too. Should help to avoid scripters somewhat.) are necessary at the same time as healers and warriors.

    So at the end of the day, people could want the rare items all they like. I would, even. You could get all items by logging in as each playstyle and help for say, a day, as that character. But if the invasion fails on day 1, nobody gets much, so it is in player interests to work together and - I think - this would prevail on many of the more populated shards. Guildwork would definately have an influence, if this was done right.

    Regarding complexity? I don't think this is an issue either. Complexity would only be in the mechanics. As far as players are concerned, it could be boiled down to simply stopping enemy spawn entering the castle through killing them, healing guards, crafting weapons and armour or repairing structures. You focus on your bit and everything is fine. It would be the EM's job to simply inform players what to do and where some people are needed. Plenty of healers and crafters would do this without care for a reward *particularly* if they knew it would actually have an impact on what happened.

    I refuse to believe simple macro casting on a single monster is the way to go for events - especially ones that take place on all shards and may involve longer time frames. Does *anyone* actually even remember scenarios? These lasted several weeks, each week having new content. This is slightly different in so much as we are talking about one event, but the overall arc could fit a similar pattern. One particular event was the machine everyone "built" by contributing resources and stuff (still visible at brit castle). This was only accomplished by players donating; funniest part? No rare drops or rewards at all for scenarios! But at the time the fun part was knowing what you did mattered.

    I am sure many of us know players who are perhaps far more casual in their playstyle, cannot "compete" with other players (solution for laggy crafters - client side check to start and stop repairs, server side check to keep them going, would remove any lag issue on any shard or computer), or simply don't attend events *cough PETRA* who would come out from hiding for the right reasons.
  6. I mean random as in I can walk out my door and find random adventure.

    For an EM event, I agree random would be chaotic. You put in a lot of good ideas. I just dont think that level of thought would be appreciated across the whole.

    Many people would appreciate it. Many people just want the prize. U0 has become less about walking east and finding adventure... to being told how to jump to get a prize. JMO.
  7. Mapper

    Mapper Crazed Zealot
    Stratics Veteran Alumni Stratics Legend

    Oct 24, 2005
    Likes Received:
    A very nice idea however I feel that level of detail and coding would be something a 3 month event could do with. Not something that lasted just 4-5 days. :( And the actual storyline about the scouts etc was a good length, Any longer and it isn't realistic.
  8. Lord Chaos

    Lord Chaos Always Present
    Stratics Veteran

    May 12, 2008
    Likes Received:
    UO needs to do two things

    1. Have in game ANNOUNCEMENT pop-up on login. (not the patcher), this announcement should be able to be turned off in the options. It will announce the events and when/how they take place.

    2. Stop making over-used city invasions. It involves people in other peoples playstyles against their will and that is not a good thing. Thankfully Leurocian understood that back then, but it has somewhat fallen to the wayside. Be imaginative, maybe 6 army camps so people will be spread out, there's loads of land to explore, just using cities is unimaginative.
  9. Lorddog

    Lorddog Crazed Zealot
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Oct 25, 2004
    Likes Received:
    i like your idea in that its more of a crafters event
  10. Willard

    Willard Seasoned Veteran
    Stratics Veteran Stratics Legend

    Feb 27, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Was just wondering if the number of monsters/attackers released in the event are scaled to the population of the shard. I play on LA which has a rather small population and felt we were sorely outnumbered. Was that by designed--were we supposed to feel overwhelmed or are the same number of attackers present on each shard regardless of shard population?