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Messages - bgrunge

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AliensRL / Re: How to make AliensRL fun
« on: October 23, 2011, 06:10 »
agreed, but you have to consider motive. He had no motive to lie and take responsibility himself. In fact, he had more motive to try and displace responsibility onto weyland/yutani, since it would have made him seem less personally culpable. (the whole "just following orders" thing) The fact that he doesnt do that, but instead admits what happened, is probably him just finally cracking under the stress of the situation. Tipping the facehuggers over after that was probably an extension of that; a desperate move made by a desperate man. And hed only have reason to be that desperate if he was, indeed, solely responsible.

AliensRL / Re: How to make AliensRL fun
« on: October 19, 2011, 15:04 »
I haven't watched the movies for a long time ...but from what I remember:

In Alien:
Ash has been ordered to return the Alien to the Nostromo's corporate employers even at the expense of the crew's lives. He did not decide to do it on his own.

Burke, who ordered the colonists to investigate the derelict spaceship where the Nostromo crew first encountered the Alien eggs, knew about alien and planned to get it to company laboratories where he can profit from their use as biological weapons.
It does not seem to me that he acted on his own.
Ripley's report about alien, events on Nostromo, its destruction, must have been known to high W-Y authorities and thats the way Burke learned about it and reason why he contacted her.

Ash WAS ordered to do that, but that does not mean the company knew about the alien before it was discovered. He had either talked to them without Dallas's authorization after recovery of the specimen, OR there was a standing order to bring back new discovered lifeforms.

Burke was Ripley's corporate contact regarding the hearings over her actions in scuttling the ship in Alien. He was present for her deposition; thats how he knew about the aliens. Whereas the rest of the panel blew it off as crazy talk, burke took initiative and told the colonists to check out her story, but PRIVATELY. He admits as much when ripley confronts him: She says something like "Directive, signed Burke, Carter J. You sent them out there, and you didint even WARN them! Why didn't you warn them Burke?" Where he says, "Ok, look, what if that ship didnt even exist; alright, you think about that? I didnt know. So you make a major security situation out of it, and then everybody steps in, administrative steps in, and there is no exclusive rights for anybody. Nobody wins! I made a decision, and it was wrong, it was a bad call, ripley, a bad call."

Pretty clearly illustrates that he was acting independently.

AliensRL / Re: How to make AliensRL fun
« on: October 18, 2011, 16:45 »
Also creators of the better worlds, Weyland-Yutani Corp.

No, they were genuinely clueless in alien and aliens. Remember, they were investigating a signal in alien, but what that signal was was unknown. In aliens, the execs have no idea what happened 75 years ago; they didnt get the memo about a company order to investigate a signal, and they arent interested in looking one up, since it makes them liable. Burke acted on his own when he sent the colonists out to explore the crash site.

AliensRL / Re: How to make AliensRL fun
« on: October 14, 2011, 01:31 »
2nding the motion scanner thing: The motion scanner was standard colonial marine equipment, same as pulse rifles, smart guns, and flamethrowers. It was not a response to the alien presence in any way. In fact, in Aliens, there is no equipment shown PERIOD that was designed to fight aliens. remember, as of that time, their existence was unknown. (well, except to ripley)

AliensRL / Re: How to make AliensRL fun
« on: October 11, 2011, 01:38 »
In regards to NPCs and narrative, a few things. Aliens was profoundly different from Alien, in that it focused less on ripley, and more on the survivors in general; it had memorable secondary characters like vasquez, Hicks, Hudson, Bishop, and Newt, and these added a reason for the protagonist (Ripley) to fight the aliens beyond pure selfish survival, unlike the first movie in the series. Indeed, the biggest showdown in the movie comes as the result of Ripley risking herself to save Newt; an action she could have decided against.

As well, another interesting thing to note is that unlike Alien, the goals of the protagonist and her allies in Aliens change over the course of the movie (in alien, the only goal ever was to kill the alien/survive). First, the goal is to investigate the colony. Then, the goal is to rescue the cutoff marines; then, (after the dropship crash) to reach a transmitter to secure a ride off the planet; then, to survive until the dropship arrived, and then to rescue Newt; then, to kill the queen. This is a more compelling narrative for gameplay purposes; each of these goals could be considered a link in a quest chain, and provide the player with interim goals beyond just building up to kill the queen.

So, I'd propose a few ways the narrative could be enriched.

1.) Base the game and its goals around a colony command centre hub which assigns goals to the player, and whose population changes procedurally based upon game events and current alien infestation levels, etc. Give the player the ability to bring NPCs with them, and to deploy defenses in this area to reduce casualties as they are accomplishing goals elsewhere. (casualties will of course be inevitable, and will mount as the severity of the infestation and scale of attacks increases) Imagine going off to repair a damaged power grid connection to restore access to an area and having a key NPC grabbed while you were gone, which affects the narrative flow; a side objective this NPC would have offered may no longer be available as a result. HOWEVER, the game could be designed with the expectancy of one or more key NPCs getting killed before offering their quests; (say, you have 10 key NPCs. they all have 2 objectives to offer. In an average game, you should be completing on average 10 objectives, meaning that the game is designed with the expectation of 5 of them getting snatched before offering an objective). This allows for a procedural narrative, which is different every game. This makes the game random and non-linear, while still providing solid sequential goals for the player.

2.) Begin the game not after significant infestation, but right at the very beginning of it; I.E., after the first alien related casualty occurs. This allows early goals to be based around "Bug Hunts", where the player is investigating disappearances, or hunting down a lone alien or two. This provides a natural contrast with the larger pitched battles that might occur later in the game, makes the early game much more suspenseful, and involves the player more strongly with his objectives; the faster he can get things done, the more colonists may survive. (Note that the game should be balanced such that it is a challenge to keep any amount of civilians alive to the end of the game, and a significant one to keep a moderate amount of them alive)

3.) Cast the protagonist of AliensRL as not a member of the military, but as a civilian member of the colony; the classes would be roughly analogous; Security, Surveyor, and Engineer would match up to Marine, Scout, and Technician in turn. This would allow the player to observe and selectively participate in events beyond their control, such as the conflict of the local marine garrison with the alien infestation at appropriate infestation levels. Say narrative-wise, that the marines are uncooperative and not interested in investigating the disappearance of one or two colonists at first, as they consider that a civil matter; this necessitates the player's involvement. Later, after the player has bagged an alien or two, and proved there is a threat, the military starts sending out patrols procedurally. When the appropriate large scale conflict/rescue operation is planned, participating in the operation could be an option available to the player, leading to the type of situation seen in aliens, where the marine squad is inevitably overwhelmed, and has to fall back. Being in the middle of a firefight like that could be quite fun, IMO.

4.) As infestation levels increase, large scale raids should occur on the inhabited sections at night, with random abductions happening during the day. During raids, alien encounters in non-inhabited sections should decrease. this makes the player consider the time he is exploring, and adds in a tactical question: do I try to help defend the colonists, or continue my objective, knowing that it will be easier since the aliens are busy kidnapping kids to infect and such?

5.) This is a smaller narrative idea, but I'd suggest that "towers" be replaced with "complexes". In the movie, the only tower was the cooling tower for the atmospheric processing array. Everything else was a complex, which had nowhere near the same vertical height. In fact, youll notice the command center complex is only about 3 stories tall, with a few levels apparent below ground. Since the cooling tower is gonna be alien central, having it be very tall and filled with catwalks and such would provide for very different combat than in a military or residential complex, say, where potential alien access is limited to certain points. On a separate note, if such points were generated along with the map, this would let the player identify such points and attempt to move NPCs, weld doors, and position sentry guns to prevent such intrusions as much as possible, and aid in defending against the progressively increasing alien raids. (note that sentry guns balance wise should not be available till after the marines are pretty much decimated, as until they are, they are not too cool on a civilian accessing military grade hardware.) The cooling tower, on the other hand, is far too open to really control passage of aliens in any significant way; there are hardly any doors to weld, aliens can appear anywhere on a catwalk (since they could climb up from below onto it), and in general its far more combat oriented as a result.

Anyways, I think having things like that would make the game more compelling from a narrative perspective.

Discussion / Re: Introduction and assembly question.
« on: August 12, 2011, 13:37 »
Ok, thank you very much. That clears up quite a bit; I also assume then that to make gravity boots the order of assembly would have to be A-N-A or N-A-A but not A-A-N, is this correct? (because of the normal limit of one mod of each type per armor, that gets overridden by assembly)

Discussion / Introduction and assembly question.
« on: August 12, 2011, 12:42 »
Hi, new to the forum, so I'd like to introduce myself and ask a noob question. I've been playing Nethack since around 1987 (back when it was just Hack), and have recently got into DoomRL, which I really like, so I'm joining the community here.

Regarding assemblies:

According to the description in the manual, weapons have two mod slots by default, and armor has one, correct? I take this to mean that I can install two mods on a weapon, and one on an armor without having whizkid. Whizkid states that it adds 2 and 1 slots to weapons and armor, respectively, so I understand that each rank of whizkid increases the slots to 4 and 2, and 6 and 3.

However, I cannot install two mods on a weapon without whizkid; even with max whizkid, I couldnt install 2 agility mods on boots (to try to make gravity boots). I am completely confused as to how assemblies and whizkid works. Could somebody help me and explain?

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