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Numos Profile
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Registered: 12-2006
Posts: 968
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Re: Death


Our focus here is the mechanical consequence of death. We have yet to forcibly retire any PCs and I hope that will continue to be the case. I feel that story death should occur only if it gives the player in question a satisfactory end. It has always been the case that death more or less equates to bring mortally injured where you might feel lasting effects (need to respawn) or require coveted, expensive, and rare magic (raise dead) to recover.

I'll start by saying giving people time-outs for dying isn't really our style. With the exception of role-playing awards experience here comes in short bursts. Its not like we have a race to farm to 40 set up.

I do believe in respawning incurring a small penalty. Small - no one is looking go eat levels. You can't really say risk-takng is bding discouraged if there is no risk. And I don't know if its ever possible to make all builds-equally effective at grinding. They don't have go be - there are many varied experience sources. Some people will always be cookie-cutters. (Keep in mind one of the most successful and stylish archer PCs on the server was a pure ranger.)

The main issue I'm seeing is there is too big a difference between what respawning does and what raise dead does.
*When some people die they have to respawn. Other people arrange for their friend (even if the CHARACTERS ARE ENEMIES) to log in and save them. I don't think this is fair.
*If a corpse vanishes, or all the party's raise scrolls are on the dead guy it gets awkward to resolve without a DM presence.
*Essentially, lucky players are able to arrange things so they never eat a respawn.
*I think this inconsistency is what I find most troublesome.

My thought is to reduce the respawn penalty but add some limiting factor to being raised: higher gold cost? Eating the caster's xp? Eating 5xp per level of the target? My goal is that its not the end of the world if you have to hit the respawn button if raise dead is non-viable.

I acknowledge that good roleplay happens regardless of fear of death, but, I don't think its in the character of this server for it to have NO cost.


Last edited by Numos, 5/20/2013, 1:32 pm


---
Characters:
Numos: Shapeshifting wizard
Taevis Bentham: Woodsman
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Lanthar Profile
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Registered: 04-2008
Location: Sweden
Posts: 132
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Re: Death


Add a banking system and make you loose all on character gold on respawn.
Set the price on raise dead scrolls to 50k or something and clerics will have a better role on the server. and reduce the XP penalty. . or try to make so respawn makes you loose one random unequiped item. .

Gold should have a higher value somehow. . i liked eochaids before when you didnt get much loot but the there was a store at the end where you could but items, but this with a realy high price instead.
Would be fun if you could set up a goal to actualy save up for something instead of getting it randomly.

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5/20/2013, 6:17 pm Link to this post Send Email to Lanthar   Send PM to Lanthar
 
Totems Profile
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Registered: 07-2010
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Re: Death


Gold is earned at a much slower rate now (2500 buy cap) whereas gear dropping allows people to kit out without needing the gold. Essentially gold's main use is consumables, and in the case of archers, arrows. Raising the price on scrolls wouldn't really gain much. We don't have a large enough playerbase to support aiming to 'always have x class along.'

(I can only think of two clerics, for example.)

Now, we could set ressurection scrolls (which are much more expensive) to have a lesser penalty than raise dead.

... all that said, the disappearing corpses bug is pretty bad. If a party does everything right (brings along res scrolls, etc) I hate to have a bug punish them.

Last edited by Totems, 5/20/2013, 9:28 pm


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Characters:
Isania Jalitana- The Huntress (and Mistress Egofantastic.)
Calisto - Gryphonrider
Nyx Talonbite- Amazon Crystal Champion of Death By Snu Snu
5/20/2013, 6:30 pm Link to this post Send Email to Totems   Send PM to Totems Blog
 
Aero Silver Profile
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Registered: 03-2013
Location: Southern California
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Re: Death


I am in favor of a low death penalty
Why should players be penalized by worse than what they started with?

I am in favor of the death debt system.
Although this can be bad for the player. Too high debt can be worse than ESL.

I am against permadeath.
It is really simple: an Internet lag or computer crash can cause a meaningless loss of a character.

I am against Loss of one level every three levels. (some servers used to do that)
Again, a case of lag or crash can cause undue frustration.

I am against inventory/gold drop.
Keep in mind that most MMOs have a PvE server and a PvP server. Forcing everyone to engage in PvP (and face serious losses) could be ground for player grievance in case of unwarranted PvP.

My two bits:
I recall two servers who had the following:
If the level of a monster/trap was drastically above the player's level, the dead player does not lose exp or gold. I think that was fair. And I am sure that players will learn not to mess with higher level monsters again.


---
Snacks are of course incredibly important to the roleplaying experience. Being part of a balanced diet, it's essential to have representatives of all four basic food groups: sugar, salt, fat, and caffeine. ~Irregulars - January 02, 2011.
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ExplodingRunes Profile
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Registered: 12-2005
Location: Ottawa, Canada
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Re: Death


quote:

Aero Silver wrote:

I am against inventory/gold drop.
Keep in mind that most MMOs have a PvE server and a PvP server. Forcing everyone to engage in PvP (and face serious losses) could be ground for player grievance in case of unwarranted PvP.



Some gold loss might be a good idea. I for one am in favour of some sort of financial sting when you die, but it probably should not be too much. A percentage of carried gold isn't so bad. As for the MMO comment, I hope we all remember that we aren't playing an MMO here. I can play an MMO for an MMO experience!

quote:

My two bits:
I recall two servers who had the following:
If the level of a monster/trap was drastically above the player's level, the dead player does not lose exp or gold. I think that was fair. And I am sure that players will learn not to mess with higher level monsters again.



Something like this sounds actually quite nifty. In theory, it would allow someone who has the risk taker mentality (which is being encouraged) to take some risks while they are still developing without having that development retarded by penalties. Unfortunately it might also encourage the attitude of risk-free risk taking (which is not being encouraged.) It would be cool if a starting character can fit into a band of higher level people on an adventure, and show his potential by picking himself up on the battlefield to hold the line. It would not be cool to have someone run into high level dungeons hoping to ride the coat tails of high level players, secure in the knowledge that they won't lose anything if they die.

---
Creator of A Tale of Bone and Steel.

Cloak and Dagger
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Valyndyral Profile
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Registered: 01-2010
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Re: Death


I think it's actually worth treating mechanical death, and story "death" (defeat, basically), as different and independent quantities.

Mechanical death happens. This isn't D&D, though it uses that ruleset. It's a mini-MMO. Dungeons exist that you're intended to run without DM oversight. Occasionally people will PvP if they're into that and have good IC reasons. Over the course of a character's life on this or any other NWN server, some dying is inevitable.

And that's fine. But the issue Numos raises in the OP seems to be more about the ramifications of that for the integrity of the game world.

So how about this: Instead of talking about mechanical penalties and ramifications for dying, which will adjust player behavior, rather than character behavior, let's talk about a possible story consequence for dying.

Most people's minds will instantly go to permadeath, but I think that's a bad idea for Andrune, personally.

My suggestion for a meaningful, IC consequence for dying that doesn't bother with OOC mechanical penalties:

When you die, you leave a corpse placeable behind, and go to the afterlife. Whether this is Forgotten Realms' Fugue Plane, or something more Aolyth-specific like Faerie, you go someplace magical and strange when you die.

While there, you're basically trapped, unless you do one of two things:

1. Bargain with the Gatekeeper.

There's an NPC who basically decides what happens to souls after they die. A Charon figure, if you like. You can persuade him that you have to back to the world of the living. Maybe someone with high Persuade can cajole, someone with high Charisma can try to seduce, someone with high Strength can intimidate, etc. Or else, if that's too much work, just have everyone follow the same dialogue path. Either way, he gives you a task you must then complete in the underworld before you're able to return to the world of the living.

2. Your PC buddies raise you.

You happen to be friends with a cleric, or someone who stocks up on Raise Dead scrolls. They cast the relevant spell on your corpse placeable.

The following now happens - In the Afterlife, where your PC is hanging out, a conversation window pops up informing you of the following:
quote:

[You suddenly become aware of a distant tugging on your soul. You think, if you can follow the direction of the tugging, you might be able to find your way back to the world of the living.]



What follows is another quest, that takes the same amount of time that the Gatekeeper's quest does, but feels thematically different. Whereas the Charon figure might've wanted you to do this or that for him, this quest involves meandering around the Underworld trying to find a hidden pathway that changes each time you receive the quest.

In both of these instances, dying costs the player time. But not in banal ways like losing XP/gold. It costs the player time in a literal sense (you have to actually complete these quests in the afterlife to be able to return), and it makes sense within the narrative of the server. It preserves the integrity of the server's storytelling.

And, perhaps most importantly, it no longer makes coming back from death instantaneous. If you die in a DM plot, your buddies will have to wait 10-15 minutes for your dead body to suddenly breath the air of the living again. They'll have to wait, fretfully and uncertain of whether the spell will work, before they can continue. They'll wonder if maybe something went wrong and you won't wake up at all. They'll argue about whether to stay with you and hope for the best, or simply push on and leave you behind, or who they should leave behind to guard you while they carry on.

Suddenly, death means something again. And most importantly, it means something in an IC sense.

Anyway, that's my suggestion.

Bonus idea: When you complete your afterlife quest and are being brought back, you are subjected to a reasonably steep will save.

Failing the will save means you lose any memory of what happened to you while you were dead (Like in real life, when people are dead for hours and recall only blackness, or only remember going to sleep then waking up an instant later).

Characters with high wisdom, however, might make the save and will then remember what happened to them when they died, which will lead to some real mindfucks, as well as the potential for cool RP. Imagine being the guy walking around town shouting that you have true knowledge of the afterlife. You could become the prophet of a new cult. Or maybe, depending on where you shout it, you could get burned at the stake. Both are interesting opportunities for RP.

Edit:

Additional idea - Clerics who cast Resurrection (as opposed to Raise Dead) just bring you back instantly. Because Resurrection is supposed to be the omg-awesome raise spell, and really right now it's not much better than Raise Dead. Assuming that Resurrection scrolls are impossible to find, this creates a niche for when players need to revive quickly (high level clerics), but makes it rare enough (there aren't many high level clerics) that it doesn't become commonplace.

Second Edit: Also, yeah, NPCs should never be raisable. PCs are the only special people who have the potential to return from death. That can even be woven into the IC narrative, if people like. PCs have some special quality to their soul that makes them able to return until their destiny is fulfilled. NPCs are just regular shmucks who don't. To avoid the potential for people acting like they're immortal IC, just have one's destiny be an inscrutable, unknowable thing. Everyone will still fear death IC, if they don't know which death will be their last.

Last edited by Valyndyral, 6/10/2013, 8:03 am
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