Quick question about your preferences in RPG gameplay.

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by Krynn72, Jul 17, 2012.

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  1. Show me the numbers. I prefer knowing exactly whats going on so I can calculate the odds.

    12 vote(s)
    42.9%
  2. Hide the numbers. I want to play a role playing game, not a math playing game.

    16 vote(s)
    57.1%
  1. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    So yeah, poll is pretty self explanatory. Do you like to know the exact numbers going on behind the scenes in an RPG, or do you like not knowing? For example, do you like it better if, say, a perk you get after leveling up tells you outright that you get +2 to some skill? Or if a weapon does 62 points of damage?

    For me, I can't stand it. I'm pretty sure its why I hate MMOs. It becomes all about maxing out your "DPS" and leads to all sorts of other stupid acronyms being discussed in order to power-game the **** out of a game. I much prefer it being vague, with weapons having cooler descriptions beyond just a statline. Then I dont have to feel stupid for not taking the best weapon, but instead maybe keeping a weapon because I like it being "iconic" of my character, and not knowing a weapon is clearly better makes that easier. Especially in multiplayer games where just because you like your character's style and load out, means you'll probably get destroyed by someone wielding a lameass looking sword that happens to melt people's innards.

    But judging by how practically every game tells you your DPS or makes it easy to calculate/estimate, I suspect I'm in the minority. Just trying to confirm/disprove that notion.
     
  2. Wanted Bob

    Wanted Bob Companion Cube

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    I'm kinda split on the issue, it depends on how many numbers there are. In games like Elder Scrolls games the numbers don't bother me at all, or in Borderlands the numbers are simple enough that it doesnt become a headache to compare guns. When there are much more variables to consider (in many MMOs and to some extent Diablo and the Witcher), it becomes too much of a hassle for me to pick my "perfect" build.

    Anyways, if forced to decide between lots of numbers or no numbers, I would prefer the latter provided it was easy to tell the quality/characteristics of equipment and weapons just by looking at them.

    EDIT: Actually, now that I think about it there is one game in which I pay attention to all the numbers (Dota 2), but that's not an RPG...
     
  3. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    I guess its sort of a "fluff" versus "stats" sort of deal.

    Like for instance, in Skyrim there was the Skyforge Steel Swords that everyone raved about in game, but which was worse than like 80% of of the weapons in the game. To me, I liked the idea of the Skyforge Steel swords, and so that became my weapon of choice for pretty much the entire game. I found a ton of weapons that were statistically better than it and I just sold them, because I didn't care about the numbers, as long as I could fight competitively with the Skyforge Steel. I also wore Steel Plate Armor the entire game, because all of the "better" armor looked ****ing retarded.

    I didn't care that I was at a disadvantage and the game was a bit harder for me, as long as it wasn't absurdly difficult to play without min/maxing and I could keep my character as I imagined him, I was golden. But in a lot of games, you simply die, over and over unless you use the retarded looking armor and weapons that are the appropriate "level" for the enemies you're fighting.
     
  4. morgs

    morgs The Freeman

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    I usually choose looks over better stats, unless I'm getting really shafted.
     
  5. Wanted Bob

    Wanted Bob Companion Cube

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    In terms of appearance, that's why I like when games give you the option of wearing two sets of armour: one set for looks and the other underneath for stats. Very few games do that anymore though...
     
  6. morgs

    morgs The Freeman

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    Every RPG should have this. At the very least, dyes.
     
  7. Tyguy

    Tyguy Space Core

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    In my opinion the numbers take away from the immersion. If I want to increase my sword's damage just let me ****ing sharpen it, I don't like having to use my TI-89 every time I want a new weapon.
     
  8. ríomhaire

    ríomhaire Moderator
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    I like the way Oblivion and Skyrim do it. There are some numbers to compare item levels, but when you're actually playing the game you don't get interrupted by such things. To be honest though Krynn I find myself agreeing with what you're saying. If it just said Damage: High instead of Damage: 62 or used bar graphs instead of numbers or even just explained its abilities in a bit of fluff I'd probably be very happy with that.

    That said I'm not much of an RPG player.
     
  9. bobtheskull

    bobtheskull Party Escort Bot

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    I must say, though I like my RPG's, I'd rather have the stats hidden. Games like Diablo 2/3 ended up being all about the stats, grinding levels to get better loot. Where with that type of game, thats fine, when it comes to heavier RPG's like the Elder Scrolls, or the Fallout series', it can ruin the flow having to constantly check numbers.

    I do, however, like the way Borderlands handles it. Damage numbers aren't too imposing, and let you know if particular damage types are having no effect. Also, the swapping out weapons where the figures are basically coloured red or green to let you know if you've picked up something better means you don't have to spend ages wading thru numbers and adding them in your head.

    I suppose I kinda sit on the fence, though would prefer a little less numbers.
     
  10. Bad^Hat

    Bad^Hat The Freeman

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    I like both, depending on what feel the game is trying to achieve. On the one hand, I actually liked the loot grind in WoW once I got heavily into raiding with a good group. Getting a new item was exciting even if it was essentially just a bundle of numbers, because you felt like you'd earned it, and watching my dps climb as I stacked more and more useful stats (yes, even figuring out the best ratios and all that nitty gritty min/max stuff) was honestly kind of a point of pride for me. Yes, I know, I'm the perfect skinner box subject.

    On the other, I often find myself thinking that certain RPGs should try to go for a more minimalistic approach, both in terms of stat complexity and the way gear is presented. I don't think the way loot "progresses" in appearance should be used so ubiquitously, by which I mean the way you start off with basic leathers/robes and progress to actually wearing a ****ing dragon on your shoulders or having a halo for a helmet or something. I like iconic armour and weapons that make you want to hang onto them, that give your character a sense of style, like Krynn said.

    The closest game I can think of to achieving this is Dark Souls, where most of the equipment looked quite modest and could actually last you an entire playthrough if you upgraded it. I think I finished my first run with elite knight armour and a regular polearm and shield, none of which would look out of place in a non-fantasy setting. Of course, it still had a lot of stat ****ery under the bonnet, and you did have to pay a certain amount of attention to it unless you wanted your guts smashed in (more than usual), but once you closed the menus it was never staring you right in the face aside from an unobtrusive health bar on your target.
     
  11. Stigmata

    Stigmata The Freeman

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    I like the numbers, but only because I have yet to play an RPG that effectively communicates anything about weapons/armor/skills without numbers. There are a number of cases where something that looks awesome has worse stats than a bad-looking item (in these cases, it's usually a failure of the visual design progression to match the stats progression), or a cool-sounding skill/attribute bonus ends up having little to no noticeable effect.
     
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  12. Vegeta897

    Vegeta897 Banned as all fuck

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    That kind of mirrors real life perfectly though, when you think about today's products. /me looks at high priced gamer peripherals and headphones
     
  13. Stigmata

    Stigmata The Freeman

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    True. If you're playing an RPG about becoming a professional gamer or musician then I have no problem with it.
     
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  14. StardogChampion

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    The only thing I don't like about some RPG's are "misses". I think you'll find my sword clearly went through your chest...
     
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  15. Laivasse

    Laivasse Companion Cube

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    This. I'm fine with the numbers being on display, as long as the gameplay and difficulty curve don't force you into obsessing over them. To be fair, I'm talking mostly about single player RPGs since the stat-heaviness of MMOs does turn me off.

    I bumbled quite happily through the Baldur's Gate series without really having a thorough appreciation for the DPS each of my party members did. All I knew was that when I picked up something that was +4, it was pretty great, so with the numbers on display it's easier to instil a sense of player reward. In a way, I viewed the stats as being part of the lore of any particular item. I guess on some level I just imagined that whoever had identified the item had given me a really thorough breakdown of what it could do.

    With The Witcher 2, I don't know... I might have liked it better with no item stats on display, purely because there were so many items that sounded awesome, which I wanted to use, but which were useless to me since the stats showed I already possessed far better gear. The root problem there is that gear which you acquire progressively should at least fit into the difficulty curve of the game; a difficulty curve is an artificial element of gaming anyway, so 'rewarding' players with gear that doesn't adequately deal with the difficulty is not really fair. For example, I knew not to put Ankheg Plate armour on my tank characters in Baldur's Gate, even though it was hyped by NPCs as pretty awesome, because 1) putting Ankheg Plate on those characters got them killed but more importantly 2) the stats clearly showed it wasn't as good as regular Full Plate. If I didn't have access to the stats and I had believed the NPCs, I might not have realised why the hell I was dying, and that would have led only to frustration on my part.

    ...Not really sure what I'm arguing at this point. I guess TW2 and this isolated item from BG are examples of items not being as good as they should be, which forces you to break immersion by playing the stats instead of playing with the items you want to use. However if the stats were hidden I think those problems would still exist, it's just that they'd be harder to get to the bottom of.

    In general, since our characters' health bars are usually broken down into number totals, the mechanics of the game are already half on display anyway. I feel like I need access to the numbers to be able to tackle a game's challenge on a fair footing.
     
  16. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Follow up question: How important is item stat progression in an RPG to you?

    What if a game didnt have "better" weapons available at all. Like, lets say there are 20 different kinds of longswords for you to use, and 20 different kinds of shortswords. Every single longsword does "Longsword Damage" and every shortsword does "Shortsword Damage" The two categories do different amounts of "base" damage, but different weapons in the same category all do the same amount. The only differentiating factor is something related to your character (like you use blacksmithing to improve your weapon of choice, or there's a "familiarity" rating that gives a bonus based on how long you've used that particular sword). Is that immediately a turn off for you, knowing that you'll never find a "better" sword, or would you find that intriguing in that its more about you and your character now, rather than the item?
     
  17. Vegeta897

    Vegeta897 Banned as all fuck

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    I like that idea.

    I never enjoy comparing stats of items. I like to go with what I feel would be good. I don't want to know the numbers, and I don't want to abandon a weapon because of its damage rating.
     
  18. Wanted Bob

    Wanted Bob Companion Cube

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    Yeah, I would be fine with that idea too, so long as there were other means to differentiate the weapons from one another (lore, appearance).

    I suppose the biggest drawback to that method though is that if you stumble across a sword that you prefer, it would immediately be a downgrade until you "upgrade" it back to where your old weapon was (if that makes any sense...).
     
  19. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Yeah, but that kind of makes sense in a "realistic" sense. You get a cool looking/sounding weapon, but its kind of unwieldy until you "get used to it" because its weight balance is different than you're used to.
     
  20. Stigmata

    Stigmata The Freeman

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    I like that idea quite a bit. It'd be kind of funny if there were also some sort of critical strike "newbie luck" modifier for newly-found weapons that diminished according to your increasing base skill as you became more familiar with it.
     
  21. Dog--

    Dog-- The Freeman

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    Through reading your post, I could only think of Shako in D2.

    That ugly ass green leather cap... **** sakes.
     
  22. Wanted Bob

    Wanted Bob Companion Cube

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    Yeah I like that idea, of getting used to a new weapon. Damn, now I wish a game would have that feature...
     
  23. Viperidae

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    I think some roguelikes have this.
     
  24. Gargantou

    Gargantou Companion Cube

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    There are non-roguelike RPGs that also have it, such as Boiling Point: Road to Hell and Xenus II: White Gold which both have a system where the more you use a weapon the more familiar you become with it but also that if you go longer and longer without using a weapon your familiarity with that weapon will slowly decrease to a certain level.
     
  25. ríomhaire

    ríomhaire Moderator
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    I think I saw a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. mod that did this with all equipment. Also, BF3 sort of does it with the unlocks-per-weapon thing.
     
  26. Bad^Hat

    Bad^Hat The Freeman

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    WoW used to have a terrible system where you skilled up each class of weapon seperately by using them. If you didn't have a weapon skill properly levelled, you'd just miss with it constantly until you improved it. How, you ask? Except you didn't ask because the answer is the same as how do you do anything in WoW and that is grinding. There was nothing worse than getting an amazing weapon in a class you hadn't skilled up in 40 levels.

    Edit: I'm not submitting this as an example of why it's a bad idea or anything, it just reminded me of it. I like the concept the way you guys put it. Maybe give the weapon gradual visual changes as you use it more too, like knicks and scrapes and stuff, just to make it more your own.
     
  27. Dinnesch

    Dinnesch Space Core

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    I like stats in games where you have a lot of similar equipment(such as Fallout, The Witcher), but I tend to prefer games that can be fun without stats. For example, the Zelda games mostly have one-of-a-kind items, and the few same-kind weapons have a very apperant difference. Zelda doesn't get repetitive because of the variety in what the weapons do instead of how well they do it. (one could argue whether it's a RPG though)

    EDIT: a bit late to the party, oh well.
     
  28. Absinthe

    Absinthe The Freeman

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    Ah, I remember getting Lok'delar for my hunter back in vanilla WoW after dual-wielding Bone Slicing Hatchets for the longest time. I was so psyched about it until I entered the next night's raid and realizing I couldn't wing clip any mobs with 15/400 skill level or whatever it was at the time. So then I went back to Orgrimmar and whacked boars endlessly. So yeah, not ideal. And yet a small part of me still liked the feeling of maxing out my weapon skills and being a "completionist" so to speak. I also liked agonizing over gear comparisons, optimal socket configuration, finding the best enchants, etc. It's the same reason I liked reforging and also why I now loathe WoW's increasingly simplified talent system. I liked trying to find the best balance between agility and armor penetration that everybody else hated! I liked respeccing four times in one night just to see which one would hit the training dummy the hardest.

    I guess I'm a min/max kind of guy when it comes to RPGs. Not saying I'm great at it since there are always stats or conversions I gloss over, but I like the numbers. It really depends on the game, but my general playstyle with most RPGs both online or offline has been a hunt for the best stats and items, even if only incrementally superior to my current loadout. In EVE Online, which is pretty stat heavy, I get a kick out of calculating my effective missile range and watching the smallest upticks in shield strength, gun accuracy, or overdrive speed. And I ****ing hate math! It's not the primary thing I'm looking for in an RPG, but I can see myself kind of getting bored with a game if I can't tweak the numbers under the hood and get a clear sense of what I'm accomplishing.
     
  29. Tollbooth Willie

    Tollbooth Willie The Freeman

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    Dragon's Dogma kinda sort-of has this, though to what degree it works is up to the player. Two sets of torso armor basically. Like an undershirt or vest as a secondary with armor on top acting as the primary. The armor is the main seller to your defense and magic rating though, so eh. Most of the armor looks pretty baller, though. The set modeled after griffons is awesome.

    Oh yeah, point of the thread. It really doesn't matter. Though I enjoy just being able to play and letting the game handle everything on its own, either way is welcome.
     
  30. Wanted Bob

    Wanted Bob Companion Cube

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    Man, ANOTHER reason why I wish Dragon's Dogma would come out for PC...
     
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  31. Raziaar

    Raziaar I Hate Custom Titles

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    I'm not a numbers guy. I used to love the style of gaming in the online text MMO I played, where things would be described in combat and stuff in terms of descriptions. Glancing blows, light hits, demolishing strikes and all sorts of things. Just descriptions and shit. You could easily know how much damage you were doing, relatively speaking, without it actually throwing numbers at you.
     
  32. Vegeta897

    Vegeta897 Banned as all fuck

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    How much does that sword cost?

    Money.

     
  33. Tollbooth Willie

    Tollbooth Willie The Freeman

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    Crapcom will probably end up porting it eventually. They'd already began working on a sequel before the game even went gold too.
     
  34. morgs

    morgs The Freeman

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    I bought Skyrim on PC during the summer sale and so far I'm only using gear that I like the look of/that suits my character. It's working well so far but I haven't fought any overly challenging enemies yet.
     
  35. Bad^Hat

    Bad^Hat The Freeman

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    Shit, I remember getting to the point where pure armor penetration outdid agility for dps and regemming/enchanting all my items. I'm not sure if this was before or after I dropped skinning for jewelcrafting so I could have that and leatherworking for the optimal crafting bonuses. Then levelled skinning all over again on an alt so I had a leather bot. The ****ing effort I put into that game, ugh.
     
  36. Absinthe

    Absinthe The Freeman

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    "PASSIVE ARP NEEDS TO BE OVER A MILLION OR DON'T BOTHER GEMMING, HUNTARD" I think was the general rule.

    I also considered rerolling other professions for the small boost it would give. But Elitist Jerks said my crit buff from skinning did more DPS. And besides, who doesn't love skinning a decade's worth of Borean Leather and useless Icy Dragonscales that AH'ed below their vendor price?
     
  37. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Sounds terrible.
     
  38. Stigmata

    Stigmata The Freeman

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    I'm so glad I only played WoW for 20 days.
     
  39. Absinthe

    Absinthe The Freeman

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    I thought HL2.net was home to classy gamers who like hardcore number-crunching experiences and Real Gamesthat require half an hour of planning before punching a rat's sack in Cave 1.

    APPARENTLY NOT, ACCORDING TO THIS POLL.

    Stig bro, you just missed out. I would have held your hand and led you through the forests of Azeroth. We could have grinded whelps for scales and farmed up resistance gear for a top-tier dungeon we'd only see the first boss of (and never down). Then we could have choo-choo trained around Orgrimmar for an hour, spamming snowballs and dancing for gold since half of our A-team isn't online.

    Alas :(
     
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  40. Vegeta897

    Vegeta897 Banned as all fuck

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    I thought you were dead.
     

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