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 Wild Ideas 
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Joined: Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:16 am
Posts: 143
Post Wild Ideas
Updated: 14/12/2013

I have reached the character limit of the OP. I'm in the process of cleaning up this thread so it is no longer just a rant but part of the design documentation. A lot of the stuff here needs to be updated and standardized anyway.
All further updates posted in the thread will instead be updated in this document:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/13Is ... 4-5WU/edit

Feel free to comment there as well. Yes, it's quite the mess right now.

Disclaimer: These are possible concepts I've been thinking about. Don't consider them outright suggestions; more food for thought on some mechanics that could help Free Fall develop a unique dynamic.
Some of it is a clear throwback to Quake and Unreal, other things are a stab at the health mechanic and the base asset play.


Overarching Themes:

Blood, Steel & Power - This stuff is about as conceptual and vague as I'll get.

A subdivision that is more inspired by the faint idea of lore and to direct a possible styleguide. It can also be used to direct different forms of weapon and visualise them.
This also a way to introduce the 'vanilla' and 'drawback' system. You have simple weapons (Steel) and you have somewhat more complicated mechanics but they are presented with risks and drawbacks to balance them out. In the end the normal (steel) weapons would still be the best, but the others give variations that could be useful in certain situations.
This is how TF2 and Magic: The Gathering does it.

Steel
Simple weapons, some with a 'mechanical' charge function. They predominately use regular ammo. They aren't very technological. (Mortar, GL, Burper, etc... maybe even the 'disk'). They do one thing, kills stuff, and they do it well. Armour would fall into this style too.

Blood
This is some of the stuff I've come up with in this thread. The archetypal weapon of this group is the Griever and the Lich type weapons. They involve affecting health of the wielder and target in some way. They can also include the weirder type weapons. These are the 'alien' or 'demonic' type weapons that all look pretty creepy. There might be dripping. Any health pickups/packs would take cue from this.

Power
These weapons use and abuse energy. Archetype: The Ion cannon. Utility weapons that are designed to fuck with you and whatever you're trying to do.
Heavy on the shiny, whirring and bweeming. Technobabble incarnate. The shield pack/powerup would also be part of this

Ammo Types - High concept - Very High Concept

Don't see this as a direct suggestion for the game. This is more a tool to think up a large number of weapon variants. To imply a certain mechanic when talking about a weapon.
Consider the idea that all weapons have the option to be either Steel, Blood or power. Basically, when selecting the weapon you are given the option to pick what the weapon requires to be fired.

For example: A lightning gun
- Steel: Uses ammo and can be replenished in the map through pickups
- Blood: Uses life, players killed drop health pickups / leech life / replenishes health pack
- Power: Uses energy.

This could go even further and have several 'tiers' of weapons. (These are spitballed) So that the weapons ally themselves further with the element.
- Steel: Uses ammo, Pickups no longer replenish ammo count, but players killed drop ammo
- Blood: Uses life, leeches on hit, can't use health pickups.
- Power: Damage lowered, drains / leeches energy.

A disk could have these:
- Steel: regular weapon 'default' version with ammo
- Blood: Bigger splash. Uses life as ammo, leeches on hit.
- Power: EMP disk that uses energy to fire, not recommended for diskjumping. OR Impulse disk, low damage, juggles players like mad. Energy cost is high enough to prevent DJing being overpowered.

The ion cannon can be slotted as a high tier version of a railgun weapon.

Justification of the 'Blood' Archetype / element:

I've been throwing the idea of life leech round a lot. And it has become somewhat engrained in my idea of duelling. This isn't simply because it's something that hasn't really been done before, but because it disconnects skill from the overall situation one might find himself in.
It's been done in a way in T:A with the survivalist pack, allowing a better dueller to stay on the field longer. Mohaa had a single +50 health pack drop for each enemy you killed. TF2 has several leeching weapons.
It also gives the opportunity of a comeback against odds. If the weapon carries a risk - a health cost versus health gain - it can create very exciting moments in duels.
It would disconnect the game further from the 'score' of killing someone. It would be about the duel and not about the kill. Effort would have to be placed into a kill and it would have to be worthwhile. This would also prolong fights and would therefore make larger maps more viable, as one could 'survive' off of other players.
Depending on the gametype and general map setting some of these weapons could be blocked or reduced in effectiveness - 'Light' versions could be implemented.

These effects should also not be overarching. Only one or two weapons would be needed to allow for this to happen. It would also not dominate the game as a powerful mechanic like this would need powerful drawbacks to keep it in check. Most of the weapons would need to be weaker than their 'steel' counterparts.

The shield and the 'always hope' mechanic

I've been thinking about the loss of hope in duels. When you face an opponent where you have no possible way of winning. Bear with me a moment.
- In quake when you respawn into the jaws of someone wielding the lighting gun.
- In T:A when you are midair and encounter proficient chain while reloading, countering chain would take too long, the only way of winning would be a quick midair shot.
- In T:A when you are left with low energy out in the open with no speed. There is no way to engage into combat without a disadvantage.
- I'll also mention Starcraft where there is a point where it is impossible to win.

The opposite is true in games like CoD (1, 2 - We don't mention others) or Counterstrike.
- A full health opponent can be caught off guard and be shot in the head by someone on 1 hp. This last person can effectively take out a whole team doing this.
- With the right counter, a Starcraft player (Especially in Brood War) can take out a large amount of units with very few of his own. Casting the right spells with the right units can win you back. A micromanagement victory to compensate for a macromanagement defeat.
- In quake, well placed rockets or a well timed rail can equalise opponents in terms of armour and health very rapidly.

These things can be very cheap for those on the receiving end, those who had the advantage. But only if there isn't sufficient skill involved.

PFF and Tribes are unique in that they don't centre around the actual killing. It always has to be purposeful. The choice to engage in combat should carry weight.

All of the examples above are offensive. They turn the tables. But none of these actually work with timing and teamwork in mind.
I propose a defensive 'hail mary': A quick switch to the shield at any time, regardless of reload state of the current weapon. The shield carries no cost safe for all removal of offensive capability and a penalty to acceleration.
There will be a minimum time that the shield will need to remain deployed. And there needs to be a limit to what it can absorb (after which it breaks).

What the shield, together with the quickswitch does:
- It can deny or prolong engagement. Either forcing the enemy to change targets, or forgo combat al together.
- Deny the final kill shot.
- Allow time for teammates to assist you.
- Not make a 2v1 situation a shutout fight.
- Take advantage of Damage over Time effects (or Heal over time on themselves)
- Prolong cluster play.
- Give time for the player to hunt for health or armour.
- Allow the player to survive a direct impact from a one-shot weapon (mortar) - The shield would break instantly.

This is a lot of utility for a single item. I don't know if it has enough drawbacks. Perhaps limiting it to light classes would help. Or if other utility weapons would prove to be equally useful it wouldn't be an issue. Maybe have the shield eat a pack slot, as pairing it with the energy shield would become a problem.

HP / Armor

I don't know what the intended implementation of the health mechanic is, so this is some thorough stabbing in the dark.

Right now the way I see things there are a few ways of doing the health system. I'm just going to sum up a few mechanics that can be implemented alone or along others.

Health pickups:
I've seen these in videos (together with weapon stands) I don't know if these are intended to stay in the game or if they will be replaced with health kits. Regardless, I'd like to give regular pickups a chance.
If the goal is to create a game with competitive depth we need to account for different play styles. Because there will be a focus on base play it is important to keep people moving on defense to prevent idle camping.
I also have an idea for some of the maps to have a spawn a good distance away from the flag stand and so the base. This way hunting for health is viable for the defense.
Similarly, if the maps are bigger and so the distance and time for the offense to get to the enemy base is bigger, they could use the on-site health to stay in the game longer.


Armor pickup:
Similar to how health is handled, armor pickup can be used to extend the life of the player. In quake is is one of the most important pickups and a lot of the game and metagame is decided by the armor locations. I wouldn't make it such a critical element. I would allow for direct counters to armor (weapons that bypass armor) to prevent defenders having too much of an advantage.
I would go for only a 50% reduction in damage or maybe 35%, down from 75% in quake.
Self Damage however would be absorbed more by armor - back to 75% or maybe eve
n 100%.
This gives the player an interesting choice which would vary depending on the location on the map and the role he's playing.
Added speed at the cost of armor, or slower movement at the benefit of lasting longer.

Armor would still be a critical element for most roles, this is then an incentive to explore the base and keep timings on armor spawns, something that is a big part of Quake competitive skill. Spreading it over a team is also added depth. The way the armors are placed in the base can balance out the amount of time players have to spend hunting for them.

Midfield play, this is to say players using the area between bases can also be encouraged to place higher number armors there, they can be incorporated in routes or can be a part of cluster play.
Health can also be placed at these locations to the same result.

Overheal Mechanic:
If the armor idea is a bit too invasive then simply going over 100% health with additional or special 'vials' or 'green health' (UT and Q3 respectively). It would have roughly the same impact on combat and self damage.
It's simpler, but doesn't quite have the depth of adding an additional pickup.

Generator Dependance
Destroying the generator is always a good thing in Tribes games. But what if the generator was a bit more neutral?
Tying health and armor spawns to the generator could give offense players a choice and make destroying it a matter of timing. If you kill the generator neither team would get the benefits of them. If the pickups are disabled after a flag has been taken, respawning defenders won't be able to buff up. But midfield pickups would remain available for offense players.

There are several ways you could implement this:
- Destroying the generator disables all pickup spawns throughout the base. Pickups despawn and won't spawn until the generator is restored.
- All pickup spawn is disabled but pickups don't despawn, pickups that were up can be picked up one last time but won't respawn until the generator is restored.
- When the generator is destroyed all pickups spawn regardless of their timer. They remain up for x seconds before despawning.

As an added quirk I would allow the repairing of the generator to happen by both teams. This can cause the team to occupy the generator dominance over all pickup timing (which would only be useful to team members outside of the generator area).


Weapons


Here I have yet another doozy. A utility weapon that could become a cornerstone of high level team play and a reason that many get kicked off of newbie servers. It could be used to educate people to the ways of team play and it could rather elegantly solve the required presence of a repair gun if base assets are used. Sound great! Okay! … Please don't be disappointed, my self esteem needs this … Haha! No really …

The Griever - Hitscan weapon with roughly the range of the T2 shocklance. On hit, swap HP with the target. Works on allies and foes alike. Possibly a percentage of the armor is also transferred. (Base assets, if included, will be repaired through this weapon, healing a 0% asset will leave you with 1hp). I'm intending the transfer to happen instantly, but I can imagine it being brought back to a Heal over Time for balance reasons.

What does this mean? Allow me to sketch the intended functionality of the weapon through a few examples:
- Enemy attack inside the base, focus down someone 2 on 1, steal HP, get back into the fight. (They can do the same thing).
- Capper coming in with speed, you respawned (slow), give HP to capper and let him be on his way.
- Give health to a player about to get a finishing blow.
- Steal health from a team member because he's a noob.

It's possible to make the griever restricted to an armor class or make it be a map specific pickup. Whatever it takes. I'm thinking in terms of model this weapon looks like the Soul Cube from Doom 3 (when it's firing it has these spiky things coming from it, … Like a victorian steampunk sea urchin from hell that Geiger got his hands on. Shut up it'll be cool).

Hitscan Railgun mechanic compensation.
The railgun or sniper is a staple weapon in most shooters. Most shooters don't have to balance for open landscapes in the way that a tribes style game has to.
The high risk / high reward play style suits a lot of players, so leaving it out is not an option. So the mechanic needs to be adjusted. Leave the High risk / reward and also keep the skill required for it.

Introducing falloff is a bandaid I don't like. The close range problem would remain and high skill shots would be reduced in value. The problem is in the damage itself, it's too high, but reducing it would not warrant the risk of using it (losing the high reward) and in open air people would still connect shots.

The Impaler - Bleed damage over time. Effect cancelled on health increase from any source.
I'm thinking about implementing two versions of this weapon, or allowing for an alt fire. Both weapons don't have a zoom function.
- Hitscan variant with 50% total life as bleed damage over several seconds. (Possibly 10% per second)
- Projectile variant with 100% total life as bleed damage over several seconds (also 10% per second or 20% per second depending on how hard to use this weapon turns out to be - and the indoor potential of it).
Both versions would negate armor (you can use it to get to health faster).

I'm thinking this weapon should look like the stake gun from Painkiller but with a slender barbed rusty needle instead of a large bulky stake. Everything should be sleeker and elongated. Using the hitscan variant would be a metallic screech, the projectile a more muted slide.

Percentile Rifle - Hitscan - 25% || 35% || 50% of remaining life total in damage - You can only bring people to low health but never kill them. Weapon negates armor.
The weapon would not be a finisher, but would be an opener to a fight. With 'reload before switch' enabled, this weapon would only be useful if someone has the element of surprise.
In open air at long ranges this weapon wouldn't be an absolute killer. It could soften the target but wouldn't be able to shut down players without coming in closer for additional combat. Targeted players would have the option to heal in the midfield if they were on a route.


Weapons - Garand

I like to throw a wrench in the chaingun debate with this one. I'm showing some of my Mohaa/CoD background with this one.

So, first, wtf is a Garand -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1_Garand
That.

This is a semi automatic weapon that has 8 rounds in a clip. It cannot be reloaded unless the clip is fully spent. When a clip is empty a loud 'ping' sound can be heard. It's the staple gun of the WW2 shooter. It could be considered a cut above other high accuracy weapons in WW2 shooters, but it was kept in the game because it was historical fact. It was balanced by reducing the amount of damage it did, although a headshot would still kill in one shot. It fit perfectly in the twitch 'one shot one kill' genre. CoD:MW destroyed the gentle balance of bolt and auto by clinging to weapons that were all designed to be overkill.

So what am I doing with this weapon in this game? A change of pace.
Let's imagine for a second that this the only projectile bullet weapon (non hitscan) in the game.
The core of this weapon is simple. Accurate moderate damage with a limited clip. I'd also like to severely limit the amount of ammo you can carry, a maximum of 4 to 6 clips of 8 bullets.
There are a lot of variables you can tweak on this thing:

- Energy on fire or reload (or an overheat mechanic that only taxes the 'orange' bar)
- a trigger delay to prevent scripting (this was the same with the Mohaa version, firing at a certain pace - not to slow not too fast. Clicking too fast would actually slow down the gun).
- Projectiles should be fast, but I think reverse falloff could be a good mechanic for this weapon to limit indoor dominance. A quirk for this gun could be to only let it do full damage on close range if its a headshot (or allow it to bypass armor that way). At long ranges headshots would not change anything.

A charge mechanic could be implemented, increasing damage the longer it is held. Energy would be consumed for the shot and perhaps additional bullets (maybe a full clip). This damage could be all sorts of things:
- Simple damage increase, to a max of double the damage.
- Negating of the reverse falloff
- Shot bypasses armor

There is also the possibility of making a fully charged shot that uses all energy and consumes a full clip become hitscan and so becoming the replacement of the railgun. I think the cost to energy (losing any additional mobility) and ammo (you have very few shots before you need to look for ammo) is high enough. I wouldn't increase the damage of this 'powershot' all too much. The price you pay is for hitscan and the utility it provides.
As a final way of locking this thing away, only allow the charge to happen when the player has 75% energy reserve. Once the charging happens the reserve can be used but when the charge is done and the weapon fires 75% of energy will be taken. Usually this will mean the player is left with no energy.

This weapon as a whole would be a faster version of the T1 blaster or the T:A Nova 'swag' blaster but the gameplay would be more suited for those types of weapon. Making it a bread and butter weapon next to the disk.
The chaingun can then be relegated to being a secondary damage source, low damage with an overheat mechanic and maybe an ELF mechanic embedded within.

In terms of model I'm looking at a black wood finish and maybe remnants of an M1 Garand gun that spent a little too much time in hell. Lore wise it's cool in a 'weapon from a forlorn age' type deal.
I consider Free Fall to be about breaking rules. I think, like the maps, every weapon can be a story on its own. Just a little different from all the rest. Like Starcraft, three completely different sets of mechanics on a solid foundation balancing each other out with their quirks.

Firing / Reload Update:
Greth wrote:
Ignorance wrote:
Instead of direct porting the idea, I think it could be tweaked to produce better gameplay.

One idea would be a weapon that has to be charged before firing. Once charged the weapon can fire several times, each shot consuming charge, before requiring a cooldown sequence. The weapon would also passively discharge, starting slowly then increasing as time passes. Once discharged the weapon has to be charged again before firing.


Okay so if I understand correctly it would look something like this:

- Weapon starts with 0 Ammo, 0 Rounds.
- Holding down fire when the weapon is empty to charge weapon (with or without an energy cost) = Load ammo to a maximum of 8 rounds.
- every x seconds a round ticks away.
- The weapon is now a semi automatic projectile bullet weapon until all rounds are spent.
- The weapon cannot be charged for additional rounds while rounds still remain.
(Optional - When the fire button is held with rounds active you get a 'charged shot' that consumes some/all rounds.)
- After all charges are spent the weapon has a reload / overheat moment.

Optional charged shots:

Consumption of some rounds: (damage of a single shot remains the same)
|| Negating reverse falloff (2-3 rounds consumed)
|| Shot bypasses armor (2-3 rounds consumed)
|| Shot becomes hitscan (2-3 rounds consumed) (This would make for a slow, moderate damage railgun that requires long LoS and timing with considerable downtime)

Consumption of all rounds:
|| Simple damage increase depending on the amount of rounds stored. 10-15% damage increase per round. (An 8 round shot should probably oneshot a full health non-armored target at any distance || considering the timing it requires, the shot needs to happen mere seconds after a full round charge is done).

- Shot becomes hitscan. 2 rounds consumed to equal a projectile round and then increased by 5% for every additional round  (Reverse falloff should still apply. If you manage to noscope someone in one shot with the timing required to get a full charge (8) at long distance, I think you deserve a OHK. It wouldn't turn into a permanent sniper as you would just have too much downtime between shots. Hell, let it drain energy after firing if you're still scared. It'll be the ultimate 'holy shit' hailmary skillshot.)

The chargeup could be 2 stage, if you hold for x seconds it consumes x rounds up to an 'ultimate' consumption of every single round that has an added effect - possibly consuming energy along the way or draining energy on firing.
I think the risk and timing required to get a fully charged shot is enough to warrant their existence.


It sounds a lot more convoluted than it really is once you take out the versions you don't want.



Weapons - Seeker
This weapon has the same projectile and speed as the 'disk'. It has the same inheritance. Significantly decreased damage and slightly increased splash damage.
The only real difference is that it fires like the UT Redeemer secondary fire (Or Metal Gear Solid Nikita). Basically, you fire and your vision becomes that of the projectile until the projectile is destroyed or out of bounds or detonated by pressing fire again.
This is the only firing mode. You are left helpless and blind (you can still move as the projectile only claims your mouse movement).
Turning speed will determine the power of this weapon as an actual damage dealer. I expect it to be low, making the fast moving projectile hard to aim in all but the most open spaces.
The weapon would have the same RoF as the 'disk', but that would almost never be used as one needs to either guide the projectile or let it detonate.

Ways this weapon would be useful:
- As a spotter. Both O and D can use it to scout ahead, this I imagine being the primary use.
- Again, spotting inside the base, a quick shot around a corner to catch a glimpse.
- A finisher on a slow moving target (again, it leaves you completely open). I expect that if a player spots the shot they can dodge like they would a normal disk.
- Annoying static defenders.

Variant:

The weapon described above is actually the charge fire of this weapon. The primary fire is the Half-Life Rocket launcher. The projectile is 'laser guided' by the player's crosshair. The only difference with the HL rocket launcher is pretty significant: There is no toggle on the laser guiding. Once you fire, every movement you make is mimicked by the projectile or projectiles you currently have in the air.
This could potentially get very scary but again the weapon has a fraction of the disk damage and you are forced to twist your camera around like crazy to direct the projectiles.
Additional ways of balancing this:
- Projectiles fired this way have a short lifespan.
- Energy drain for every projectile fired.
- Energy regen penalty for every projectile fired.
- Very low ammo base // ammo only found in the base.

Variant of the Variant: And increasingly silly

Fire a steady stream of tiny rockets with short lifespan and with the laser guiding mechanic. Low damage, low splash. With the proposed Garand 'charging' mechanic to reload. It would be a projectile based slower version of the lightning gun (or a flamethrower) and it would look cool as hell and bring the term 'tracking' to a whole new level (don't look at a wall or a floor).

This weapon could be some good fun both indoors and outdoors.

Weapons - Singularity
A BFG. Walk speed projectile with huge splash damage that blots out the sun. Again, it is slow, so very very slow. It's a 'line of sight' mortar. You 'charge up' the shot that takes 50% of your energy before you can fire (or using less energy before release creates a weaker, smaller shot.
This is basically an area denial weapon. People would be more likely to fly into it than actually getting hit by it. Using it indoors could be a nice suicide mission, or shoot it through corridors to prevent people from following you (the energy requirement requires you to plan that stuff).

All I am seeing when imagining this gun is basically a giant energy ball fired into the trajectory of a speeding player; he sees it coming but he's going too fast to do anything about it. "Ooh Sh- Floomp". It's a reverse mid-air.

Black hole sun
I'm not entirely opposed to simply removing the damage idea and have it completely deadstop someone or suck someone towards it. If that is the case I would lessen the energy cost, but still leave it very much a low RoF weapon.
It would still be super fucking slow, like a temporary wall more than anything.

This could be the granddaddy of the ion cannon OR could even be the charge effect of the ion cannon!

Weapons - Lance & Shield

The lance is a simple two handed melee weapon. It's a stick with a pointy end. You stick'em with it.

- On attack the lance juts forward, dealing base damage. But if the player holds down attack the lance remains forward. The lance now deals damage dependant on player and target speed differential:
To elaborate: The weapon deals moderate damage on initial 'stab', but increases in damage depending on the speed differential between the target and the player.
This works both ways. Speedy target, slow player, poke with lance = Slow target, speedy player, poke with lance = dead target.

- When the flag is taken, the flag replaces the lance.

The shield: (Tower shield or Spartan round shield, take your pick.
Optional 'addition' to the lance. The shield is added to the lance and is treated as a separate weapon to the normal 'two hand' lance. When the shield is equipped the lance's base damage is halved.

The idea is that with a secondary toggle the shield is deployed (this is not an energy shield, but a real metal shield) which would act as additional armour
(Let's say 50% additional damage reduction - so it would mitigate all damage to health). The shield has a set amount of durability, it will break after absorbing x amount of damage (like regular body armour).
During the shield deployment the lance cannot be used. But maybe impact damage (body blocking) can still do damage.
Deploying the shield will greatly increase drag and would slow down all movement considerably.

This would be used to turtle up and hope for the best (holding out for reinforcements), or could be used for a very slow cluster technique. It would also make melee fights awesome.

Weapons - Highly Conceptual, Blood - The Lich

The mechanic is weird and brutal. The idea is to use health as another currency, this would fit in the category of the Griever.
There are several ways to implement this mechanic. So here is a range of concepts for the gun that could be 'The Lich':


- As a longer range Lightning gun. Firing would drain life as ammo, hitting would heal for the same amount. A duel between two of these would be an endurance test of accuracy between the two players. It can also be a way to get back into a fight.
I generally don't like the LG as a weapon, as the person with the highest armour usually ends up winning when skills are roughly matched. This would magnify any skill discrepancy. The higher skilled player would have an advantage over any armour.
Also, the idea of a 'vampire' player that uses this and the Griever together makes me a bit giddy. (Come in at low health, hit with the Griever to start a DoT/HoT drain, use your opponents life to fuel the Lich while healing from two sources).

- As a way to balance the Railgun (Yup, stil trying): Firing would cost health. On damaging a target that cost will be returned to you. You can then still change the mechanic further by having the cost and damage be DoT effects or not and/or letting the self damage be negated by armour.
A DoT would allow the shooter to fire more than once before succumbing to his miss, a hit would cancel out the drain. This puts a lot of pressure on the shooter, especially if the first shot is a miss. This would be better for a faster, lower damage weapon.
An instant cost has a different kind of pressure. If the weapon his slow firing with high damage, you only get one or two shots. So even if someone has a high accuracy rate, every shot has to hit. So I think it will be balanced at the high end. You always risk being gone.
Although one problem can still remain, that of a sniper near the spawn or camping near a health pickup. But with proper map design and spawn locations I think the drawback is enough even for the highest level.
An additional mechanic counter would be to let active shields count as a miss. Making the weapon a really scary Russian roulette for those sniping.

- As a variant of the 'Impaler' Stake gun / bolt launcher.. I'll save the more plausible for last. A Slow RoF projectile weapon that drains a small amount of health instead of using energy or ammo. The damage is much higher than the health cost.
A life draining mechanic is optional here. Again there is the option to let the damage and / or heal be over time or instant.

In a perfect world, all of these weapons would be implemented as reskins of other weapons, or be a type on their own. You could build a whole soft class system where players can pick health based weapons, energy based weapons and ammo based weapons or a combination of all of those.

Weapons - Highly Conceptual, Utility - The Donor

This mechanic can be implemented on any type of weapon. Unlimited hitscan would probably be too cheesy (and a bit too much like the ion cannon). The mechanic itself is simple: Velocity Transfer.
Both indoor and outdoor speed is not exclusively positive. You'll always have the danger of cratering. This is what makes this weapon devious.
This works on both friend and foe, giving some interesting teamwork possibilities. This would be a fairly complicated mechanic, but thankfully we're not going for the casual market.

Some possible concepts:
- A flat sum || percentage is deducted from your velocity and given to the target. A charge would give a larger swap.
|| Like the Griever, velocity is swapped (this could really interesting on the stand and as a chaser) (this would require a close range weapon).
|| The slower goes faster, the faster goes slower.
|| Like the Lich, speed is used to drain speed. If you hit, you inherit the speed drained from your target (this could work on a chaingun type weapon).


Weapons - Power - Lightning rifle

You paint the target during a short charge. This charge does no damage. When the charge is done, instant damage is applied to the target relative to how much of the paint charge hit. Once the charge is initiated it can't be stopped.

This weapon would be impossible to use at full blast indoors or outside at high speeds unless you're already at the same speed as the target (leading while moving would be near impossible at a distance).

It could be used as a hitscan / chaingun tracking skill surrogate. The damage would curve so that hitting less than 50% would do low to moderate damage but hitting anywhere near 90% to 100% would lean towards a one hit kill on a non armoured target. Again, at long ranges this would be a near impossible feat, even at the highest level even with a zoom toggle script.

Considering you're painting with a negative charge the damage doesn't have to come from the weapon itself, it could be visualised as a lightning bolt coming from the sky / air. A flash of light with a delayed thunderclap is mandatory regardless of how it is visualised (also regardless of how close you are to the target, a wizard did it and it's cool).

Weapons - Power - Skorpion

Weaponized 'Dodge pack'.
The weapon has a relatively slow projectile and has a limited range.
Energy cost on 'connect'. So misses don't cost anything but time and reloads. Or an energy cost relative to the direction switch of the target. A 180° turn would be very pricy.

Version 1:

Projectile 'tether' shoots  out (50% inheritance?)
100% change in direction. 100% speed retention.
Or
100% change in direction. Speed retention relative to how strong the direction change was.

Version 2:
"Get over here!"

Projectile 'tether' shoots  out (50% inheritance?)
100% change in direction towards the shooter. 100% speed retention.
You 'pull them in'.
A quick switch to the spear/melee weapon would be a pretty awesome combo.

If you think this overpowers stand D, it would be similar to Midairing the capper, only you don't kill him - you just piss him off.

Weapons - Steel - Pod Gun

Very low damage chaingun. On charge a copy of the gun is dropped. This copy fires when the main gun is fired, in the direction the player is facing / aiming. The copy (pod) fires for X rounds, it then explodes dealing a lot of damage in a large radius(to prevent people camping close to them). The pod has very low health and will explode when shot (an additional way to use the weapon as a remote detonation mine by firing at it yourself around a corner).

I don't know if the pods need to be limited in number, deploying them and replacing them would take a long time and it would please 'farmers'. Large fields of these would be just as dangerous to friendlies as they would enemies. They could be daisychained for anyones gain. Their low health would also make them easy to take out.
The pods would remain active even when weapons are switched. I.e. firing a disk would only fire one bullet from the pods unless the fire button is held down between reloads.

This weapon would be very versatile but at least one pod would need to be active and near a target in order to cause more than trivial damage.
Pods could be used to spam a target from very far away (by placing them on capping routes) as long as you have LoS on the target although leading in the pods' stead would be a skill in of its own.

Optional:

Pods hover in the air and don't drop to the ground. They stay where they are placed with the charge mechanic.

The pod gun isn't a separate weapon, instead you 'hold' the pods and can fire them while holding them before deployment. When the pod is empty, it explodes. So one would need to drop one to 'reload' (take a new pod). A near empty pod can then be used as a kamikaze bomb.

Variant:

Disk and mortar versions of the pod gun. (5 mortar pods firing at the same time onto one point would be pretty fucking amazing to look at. It would also be the roaming D's fault for letting people set that shit up. The timing would need to be perfect and the D would get a pretty big cue anyway. Cool stuff to happen. A mortar pod would only have 2-4 rounds in it)

Weapons - Power - Pulse Mortar
(Quick simple one)
High speed, high fire rate, extreme range. No damage. Reduces speed in a large splash area.

Weapon - Power - Disruptor

The chaingun is a difficult debate. The problem is that for opponents of equal skill (or one opponent outclassing the other) it puts the duel on a timer, the winner usually the one who starts firing first unless the other can use a different weapon or positioning (or both) to gain an advantage. It forces the opponent into reactive play.
It's my belief that there is a need for a 'bread and butter' finisher weapon to narrow the comeback time for people caught off guard and to keep the importance of surprise engagements (first strike) and keep the value of last minute mid-airs against odds.

Now the possible solutions might be convoluted, but let's note them down anyway. And after reading them it could be pretty intuitive.

The Disruptor is a high RoF, high projectile speed chaingun with spinup time.

Variant 1 - The Disruptor:

A low to no damage dealing debuffer. Every X bullets a stack is applied to the target to a maximum of Y stacks. The chaingun causes all damage done to the target by all sources to be increased by Y*Z%. This would make it a utility player gun that helps out teammates. Damage increase would first be negligible especially versus armoured targets and would see a curved increase.


Variant 2 - The Sunder Chain:
Same as Variant 1, except the damage debuff only applies to the Disruptor (and the Disruptor of others). At full stack it would do moderate damage. Two players using the disruptor would have a high damage potential and increased application of stacks. Again the damage output would be non existent at first and see a curved increase.
If the stacks are quick to add and quick to fade then this weapon would only reward perfect leading and constant Line of Sight. It would allow targets to negate any stack buildup by simply breaking LoS (by hitting the shooter with an ion cannon for instance).


Variant 3:

Same as 2 except each player has his own set of stacks. Doubleteaming would not have added benefit.


Variant 4 - Havoc Chain:

Same as 2 except the effect is reversed. The weapon does high damage at first and as stacks are added the 'resistance' of the target increases. The longer the target gets chained the less damage is received by it.
This completely changes the dynamic of the weapon. It can be used as both a finisher and opener, but not as a weapon for continuous use unless targets can be swapped.
Adding all features of 2, a target would not be able to be chained down by a large number of people as they would rapidly become immune.
This drawback can be balanced any number of ways but application of stacks by X bullets will be the easiest rather than RoF or even damage.


Variant 5:

Same as 4 except everyone has they own stack count, increasing the overall damage potential (you don't like this one, but I thought I'd include it to be complete).


Disruptor conclusion: The core utility disruptor is a weapon made for the chase, waiting for the moment to deal the actual damage, or set up for someone else to land that one midair kill thanks to your stacks. The balance lies in that it does everything a chaingun does, except it provides the potential for damage and not the damage itself.

The Sunder chain makes the weapon a deliberate choice. It requires dedication and continuous LoS, once engaged it almost prevents use of any other gun. Missing shots would be very punishing.

The Havoc would be the opposite, something you switch to as a way to get some midrange damage in when other guns have failed, or as a finisher when the damage has already been done, or as a last ditch effort to do damage before being taken out yourself, hoping you survive the spinup time. It completely discourages continued use, but it has a nice gap to fill in duels.
It encroaches on Garand territory a bit, but I see the garand as burst damage, slower projectile and certainly less sustained.

All in all, three different ways of implementing chain with crippling but balancing drawbacks. I can see all three working in harmony although I would be happy to see one of them make it.
A lot can be done to these mechanics to balance them out, so as always feel free to discuss.

Weapon - Power - Stalker

This is slightly inspired by the 'capped speed inheritance' 'shmup' gun. It is complex, but intuitive enough to work. The gun has two mechanics that on their own could be quite interesting.

Mechanic 1:
The Stalker fires rockets that have no velocity on their own. The rocket's velocity is that of the player at the moment of firing.

-As a mechanic on its own it could be used to make 'air mines' or a slow moving wall of rockets. (They would need to time out eventually)

Mechanic 2:
Stalker rockets mimic all movement - including turning - of the player. However, they do not slow down once they have gained speed. Any speed increase by the player is incrementally added to the rocket speed.

Charge-up breaks the link with the player (with or without an energy cost).

Variant:

No rockets, but bullets that 'follow' the player's direction, or respond to pressing directional keys in transit. It would be the equivalent of a golf player to lean in the direction they want the ball to go, but here it would actually work. Remember that this is true for all bullets in the air. The direction 'conversion' wouldn't be 100% like with the rockets. It would only allow for small corrections at a very large distance.

Weapon - Blood (durr) - Bleeder

A chaingun that puts stacks on a target without dealing damage.
X seconds after the first stack is placed (or Y amount of stacks has been reached) bleed damage starts to be dealt over time (Z) increased by Y. Once the first stack has 'burst' no additional stacks can be placed on the target until Z time has passed and new stacks can be applied.

This weapon required chain salvos to connect during a short window and also allows a target to retaliate even when on low health, preventing a shutout fight of 'he who chains first wins'.
RoF can be high, balanced through DoT damage or number of stacks.

In terms of appearance I'm thinking something gruesome, like a demon dogs head carved into a spiked point or something. Serrated jagged spikes with a 'red venom bag' attached to it that explode after the first one goes.

Variant / Secondary fire
Medium speed projectile single shot (much slower RoF) with a similar but more powerful effect.

Deployables

Mines - The timer mine.
I don't want to promote farming. I don't want ten different kinds of mine. But I'd like this little gimmick to make it in the game and maybe bring back mine disking.

As the name implies this is a mine with a timer. Defeat it is set to 60 seconds, using the alt fire it skips back to 1 and holding down the alt fire rapidly increases the timer again all the way to 60.
When the timer is done, the mine explodes. It's almost invisible, does a lot of damage in a large AoE but gets destroyed on impact if someone finds it or spams for it. Making it an interesting tool indoors. It can be used offensively or defensively.
- Placing it on a timer and then triggering it by firing it yourself.
- Leaving it on a short timer to kill someone behind you around a corner.
- Force the enemy player to stop and shoot.
- It can also be used to remotely take down the generator (more than one mine will have to be used, but they will daisy chain. Or you could bring down the generator down to a where one mine would take it down) giving the player that does so a perfect timing on base assets going down.
- Setting it to 1 or 2 seconds (only a single alt-fire click) it could be used as a conventional grenade.
- They can be used to minedisk the stand, but you'd have to renew the batch every minute. And the first mine would take out the whole farm.

Again this idea is one that promotes depth with a simple mechanic. The mine would need to have a giant timer on it in terms of visuals.

In terms of balance I would like to increase damage depending on how long the timer is to prevent the grenade becoming too powerful. The mine-disking with the 60 second timer could still be too powerful, but damage increase could be stopped around the 30 second mark, having a nice curved increase in damage up to that point.

I would limit players to 2 for light and 3-4 for heavy. Less if their use becomes too prominent.

Packs

Pack - Blood - Spawn Pack

Deployable. Portable spawn point can be placed anywhere on the map. When the deployable is destroyed all players that spawned through the point (in their current active life) get killed (or at least get damage and/or energy drain).
It could be indicated by some sort of haze on the screen, or at least an indicator.

I think this is a nice novel take on a straight up teleporter. The drawback makes it interesting for the defense to go looking for it, it can also speed up maps in waves and still keep a high level of risk involved in using it over regular spawns. It would also give purpose to big bases in addition to armor pickups and general lack of 'fixed' assets.

The problem is that you'd need a spawn point map. The same thing can be achieved by making it a bonafide teleporter with an entry and exit point - which can just be placed at the spawn.

Bonus über nutty idea: Player's share a health percentage with the deployable. Coupled with the griever (healing the deployable would heal the players to let's say 50%) and some D would make for a very weird assault technique. (All spawn deployables also share a percentage with each other so not everyone can use their own without risk).

Pack- Blood - The Vamp Pack

Replaces the health pack/kit. Starts off empty, every time you kill someone you get a 50% life heal charge that you can use. Up to a max of 100%

Variant:

A small amount of passive life leech on all weapons, no health kits or pickups allowed.
- Percentage of damage dealt.

Pack - Steel - The Dodge Pack

'Simple' mechanic that allows you to change direction. There would be a lot of ways to implement and balance this out:
- 100% direction conversion
-> Heavy energy cost
-> Speed reduction
-> Health damage
-> Cost depending on the angle (a 180° 'back to front' turn would be near full energy / Velocity / lots of 'whiplash damage')

- Percentage conversion
-> same as the above, but the pack is weaker and will need to be used several times to have a large impact on direction (more like a T:A thrust pack).

The Spectre set - WIP

The Spectre Concept


Revamping and combining the whole 'Spectre' idea I've had for a while. Although this might be too complex to add to regular game modes.
This obviously still needs a lot of work. The damage reduction / increases will need to be balanced after playtesting to see how much it can be abused.

There are three player states:
- Normal
- Phased
- Spectre

The Spectre:
- Spectres are invisible to normal players.
- Normal players are invisible to spectres.
- Cannot interact with normal players or any pickups - including flags.
- Uses life as energy, and regenerates life just as quick. HUD energy meter becomes red.
- Spectres can see each other spectres and deal normal damage to each other.
- Spectres can see Phased players, and visa versa. Phased players deal 150% damage to Spectres. Spectres do 150% damage to Phased players.
- They have x less weapons slots depending on their armour class.

Phased
- Appear faded / Monochrome to other players.
- Cannot interact with pickups or flags.
- Uses life as energy, and regenerates life just as quick. HUD energy meter becomes red.
- Deal 50% damage to normal players.
- Receive 50% damage from normal players.
- They have x less weapons slots depending on their armour class.

The Packs:

Now it's a matter of activating these players states.

Spectral Cloak pack:
Player becomes a Spectre. Upon deactivation the player is drained of all energy. Health at the moment of deactivation is transferred.
This pack carries a weapon slot penalty.

Phase Shift pack:
Player phases out. Upon deactivation the player is drained of all energy. Health at the moment of deactivation is transferred.
This pack carries a weapon slot penalty.

Phase Teleporter:
Player deployed teleporter, all players using the teleporter are phased out.

Can be used with weapons as well. Get hit, phase out or get turned into a spectre for a little while or permanently.

Spectral Cannon:
Fires slow moving orb, all players hit by the weapon or it's AoE turn to spectres / for a short time.

Spectral Railgun:
Unlimited hitscan, knocks a player out of phase or spectre. can be used by normal players. Interacts with spectres even if you can't see them.
Would be cool to add to the ion cannon as an additional feature.

Quote:
Pack - Highly Conceptual, Blood - The Demon Pack

And to top the list of batshit crazy, I have something straight out of Path of Exile:

- Energy regeneration is applied to Health instead. All energy costs are deducted from Health instead of energy pool. Player has no energy.

Crazy? Yeah, but I think the drawbacks would be balanced with the benefit of having super fast regeneration. There would be a lot of tactics involved. This guy could be a very strong stand D, but would be fucked if he had to go anywhere. Also on O, in transit this guy would be weak, but once in the base he could be a pain. A chaingun would be pointless against him if he was on the ground, but a disk would kill him outright.
It's a cool mechanic to think about. Especially in combination with some of the other crazy 'blood' weapons.
A well timed ion cannon would be death for this guy though.

(Steel & Power would also get a pack like this, called 'Golem' and 'Archon' respectively. They don't need to be as invasive).


Pack- Power - The Wraith Pack

Player becomes ethereal for a short amount of time.
- No fall damage
- No flag retention / pickup
- Projectiles / explosions / Any damage is/are negated
- Player passes through other players

Cost:
- Energy cost upfront
- Energy drain
- % of health remaining
- No cost, simple cooldown

This could also be placed as a map pickup like the quake teleporter as a 'get out of jail free' card.


Pack - Blood - Spectre pack (Should distinguish from the wraith pack)

Player spawns as a spectre.

Spectres (some not all of these drawbacks are intended to be implemented):
- takes no self damage
- can't heal or pick up armour in any way
- can't touch any flag
- Have improved jet and general movement acceleration.
- Deals 50% damage.
- -1 to weapon loadout.
- (receives increased damage?)
- (has the 'demon' pack ability: No energy, all energy cost is deducted from life instead, life regenerates as if it was energy).

Balance options: Timed life.
|| Set timer
|| Life ticks down
|| Timer reset on kill
|| combination of the above.

There is a lot you can do with this. You could consider it an unofficial 'packless' third class. A quick cluster enforcer, a pod clearer. A wave fighter which would be hard countered by any defence oriented player (both energy and regular shield).
It's a fun idea to play around with.

Pack - Blood - Spectre Spawn Pack

This is a combination of the Spectre pack and Spawn Pack. A 'light' version which can be a different approach to reinforcing a position with a significant drawback.
It's a teleporter that changes people into spectres (or they gain another significant drawback from stepping through).

I think this could be interesting to design the spectre around this. A full team could suicide and reset when a teleporter goes down for a quick 'zerg' attack. Easy coordination that comes with the price of a very gimped loadout, sometimes allowing a single player to possibly kill a large number of spectres.
Combining the spectre with the demon pack idea (No energy, all energy cost is deducted from life instead, life regenerates as if it was energy) also would have some interesting consequences. As the ion cannon and similar weapons would become very powerful against such an attack (no regen: no life) and because of this hard counter it could be used to balance the spectre out.

Pack - Steel - Requip Pack

This is something that could have a major impact in gameplay, so it shouldn't be taken lightly. The concept is very simple:

- On use: Switch loadout.

- Single use with full energy depletion
- No healing reset if switching to another armour class; switching from light to heavy will leave you with the amount of health you had as a light, but allow you to heal up to full heavy capacity. Obversely, switching from a damaged heavy armour to a light would proportionally reduce the light's health.
- Armour, if picked up, is reset.
- Ammo values are low and have their max capacity reduced. This is very important. A low ammo count and capacity will severely limit the triviality of the switch and the effective usefulness. As far as I'm concerned this is the main drawback that will balance out the pack.
- The switch can be instant or require a casting time, I'm not sure about that, I think it can be instant because of the drawback already there. So even with the energy cost it could be used mid fight, the switch would kill mobility through the energy cost and no life chenanigans.

Think, portable iron man suit.

One thing to consider is the possibility of having the loadout switch either to a different pack, another Requip pack; essentially allowing for indefinite switching, or not replacing the pack at all, adding the drawback of a packless loadout after switching. Note, that switching to a loadout with overlapping weapons would not replenish those weapons (otherwise you could just switch back and forth to bypass the ammo penalty).

One reason I like the idea is to have transitions in a play being made.
- HO could switch to cluster.
- HoF could switch to chase.
- A utility player could switch to a damage role.

If done right it could be a very interesting mechanic and the drawbacks would hopefully keep it from becoming a dominant element. It would bring a tremendous amount of versatility into play and would somewhat reduce any Rock, paper, scissors play that might seep in. On Defence it would compete with simply suiciding, but on offence it can be used to compensate for certain situations, allowing play to continue.
Weapons remain the same, so in the end it would be used to adapt to a situation rather than try to one-up someone. The odd surprise mortar would be kind of cool, it would also leave a heavy low on health and energy. Mid chase switching would again be balanced through drawbacks and frankly I would love to see if it can be incorporated into capping.

Pack - Blood - (Astral) Projector Pack

A novel approach to cloaking. It also speeds up gameplay in a different way.

On activation the player 'leaves his body' and takes control over an invisible 'ghost form'.
The player's body remains stationary at the location of activation and retains HP and Armour. The body is effectively a sitting duck. (In reality it would be a mesh copy of the player).
The ghost form would not interact with any pickups or flags while active. And perhaps not clip with players either.

There are a few ways of implementing this:

|| Damage dealt to the body is also 'felt' by the ghost form.
|| Damage dealt to the body is not felt by the ghost form, but the player still 'dies and respawns' when his body does.
|| Damage dealt to the body has no effect on the ghost form, killing the body simply means that the pack can't be deactivated, trapping the player as a ghost unless he suicides.

How the ghost form itself operates is also open to discussion:
|| Two way lane: Body receives damage suffered by ghost form.
|| Any damage suffered cancels the pack effect - returning the player to his original position body with or without the damage applied.
|| No damage can be received by the ghost form. No impulse received from weapons. Ghost form has an inherent bonus to speed and energy.

When the pack is 'turned off' the player's body teleports to the last location of the ghost form. This should have a very loud audio cue (read: FTL jump-like explosion). Obviously there should be a combination of drawbacks.
|| Inherit speed with a significant reduction
|| Drains all energy
|| Get a flat damage hit on 're-entry'.
|| Can't interact with pickups or flags for x seconds after 're-entry'.
|| Receive extra damage for y seconds after 're-entry'.

Variant:

A short range version of this idea could be used by having the player consume his energy. Effectively making this a more dangerous version of a standard cloak pack. It could be used as a soft blink pack as well.

Second variant: 'Vengeful ghost form'

You still stay behind, but now your ghost form can interact with the real world and is also visible. The ghost form has it's own life and armour pool - 50% of what you had when you started - but doesn't 'feed back' into your real body - which still stays behind. Other possible drawbacks:

|| A damage reduction on the 'ghost versions' of the weapons you are carrying.
|| No or lesser energy regeneration.
|| A visible trail leading to the player's body.

This variant would alleviate some of the strain of long travel - allowing players to scout and harass bases without putting themselves at risk. It also gives the defence another target to hunt. Lethality is high in this game so this is in many cases a split second thing, and something easily dealt with.

This idea is similar to the spawner idea I had where people using the deployable teleporters would become 'spectre' versions of players. Fickle versions, as a drawback to the rapid transportation.



Pack - Blood - "Demon Hold" pack / Void Charge

On contact with any surface the player comes to a dead stop for as long as the pack is held down / activated. It trains energy and then life until the player either dies or lets go.
When the player lets go he instantly resumes his previous velocity in the direction of which arrow key was pressed down. If no key is pressed down the direction the player was going in is resumed.

Extra: When the pack eats into the player's health that life is converted into speed after letting go.

This could be a very interesting indoor pack. If not too dominating without a significant drawback (the life cost should maybe happen during the energy drain too - or the speed retention is tiered with the amount of energy / life spent).
This could give players some NS2 'Skulk'-esque movement.

Assets, Vehicles & Other


Base assets - The crawler

I don't know if vehicles are intended to be implemented, neither do I know if base turrets are going to be part of it all. But in case both make it in, I have one suggestion:

Spawns at a fixed location the crawler is a manned base turret that shoots mortars at double the firing rate of a regular player mortar.
At the cost of player energy it can move off its platform. Very slowly and very energy intensive. I'm thinking, player walking speed at the cost of using jets.

---
Feel free to discuss these ideas and analyze them to the bone. Not all of these are meant to be implemented side by side.
Have at it.

_________________
Greth, much like Lilith, was one of Gods first children. He was subsequently banished from the garden of eden because he kept complaining about the lack of radial symmetry in the heightmap concept of the garden. The placement of the tree of wisdom was also lacking in strategic importance. All historical records featuring Greth, including Bible passages have been expunged since the early 12th century.


Last edited by Greth on Sat Dec 14, 2013 5:10 pm, edited 26 times in total.



Sun May 05, 2013 8:05 pm
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Post Re: Wild Ideas
Your repair gun idea is interesting and could be tweaked to behave differently on different assets in different situations. For the sake of balance, I have a feeling the weapon would have to heal over time to repair already functioning assets, but for disabled assets it could be an instant shot, heal over time which would allow for the acting player to do other things; requiring players to actively heal already functioning assets would give offense the chance to overwhelm the healing or kill the player. For enemy assets I'm thinking any repair item will be able to do damage. Really I've been looking at possibly combining the LG from Quake, and the Repair and ELF gun from Tribes into one mashup; it's just something I've been considering and they all behave similarly so it's something that could happen.

As for unlimited range, hitscan, damage dealing weapons(railguns), I am steering clear; the problem with railguns is that they are mostly no risk high reward. The rail is a weapon of control and is used to deny access. For Free Fall in it's current state, I don't want any player to have the level of control that a railgun enables. That said, I've been thinking on a hitscan EMP weapon but even it could grant too much control; I've been thinking it could eat the shooters energy bar and drain the same from the target. Maps need to evolve to a state where a railgun can and should be supported; before then I have no plans to push a hitscan rail into the game.

For mines(and grenades), if the player can hold more than 1, I'm planning to have the items eat a weapon slot. We'll see about mine disc'ing, but if it makes it in game it will not be the same as T1/T2; at the very least players will not be able to toss items, I plan for everything to be equipped before use.

Vehicles are planned, but implementation is quite far down the list. Manual contol of turrets and base assets is something I'll be looking into, but who knows how it'll go. I'm not sure I like the idea of a stationary player, even if they are manning an asset; I just don't want to encourage any play that rewards stationary behavior. For example I plan to tweak the CTF win score, and likely set it higher than the standard 3; higher win conditions can help shape the importance of offense and defense in a way that discourages turtling. I also plan to add win / loss / contested for results rather than win / loss.

Health and armour for arena gametypes will be like Quake; health is health, and armour absorbs a percentage of incoming damage. For strategy gametypes I'm initially leaning towards the T1 / T2 model of health packs with a potential change in that the difference between light and heavy will likely be a difference in percent absorbed incoming damage. For anything in between, we'll see what happens. Mappers will do whatever, and if someone finds a good bridge between arena and strategy it'll likely propagate.

Generators. No generators, a generator, multiple generators, whatever, I'm seeing generators as an option for maps rather than a requirement. Your idea of tying pickups or other things to generator activity will be doable and completely up to the mapper.

_________________
"Not every idea your gonna have is gonna be great, but I guarentee you every idea that doesnt work will somehow work into the idea that does." -Derek Waters

"It's a weird feeling being borderline addicted to gaming and not having anything to play that I can tolerate at the same time." -DejZant

"No longer are you justified saying that an idea in science is not true because it doesn't make sense." -Neil deGrasse Tyson

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Mon May 06, 2013 2:58 am
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Post Re: Wild Ideas Requiem
So there's not to be any bullet speed weapons in the game?

All right...

I'd like to reiterate that the windup formula-spread cgs were interesting. :'( Its not like being good in close range is harder with other weapons against one who knows whats going on.

If its ever going to have packs and static defence one suggestion i have thats rarely implemented would be a 'backpack' from which a selection of defensive objects could be deployed: mines, turrets, etc. (ala unpopular l:od engineer core) If its ever going to have deployables i would vote for this over the forwatd inv stations favored by the other tribes'.

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Tue May 07, 2013 1:37 am
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Post Re: Wild Ideas
We better not have minediscing. D:<

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Tue May 07, 2013 1:39 am
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Post Re: Wild Ideas Requiem
Player2 wrote:
So there's not to be any bullet speed weapons in the game?

I'm not sure what you mean by "bullet speed weapon".

A backpack is an interesting idea. I'm not a fan of inventory stations in general due to the meaningless clustering they create. I like the backpack idea though, worth exploring.

Random, or set "Random" spread will likely not be in game applied to any player weapon(AI controlled turrets likely will have some form of spread); it can be fun, but also can be infuriating, and without spread the gameplay loses nothing. Spread only serves to undermine a players confidence in a weapon; it can be used to balance, but unless the game is aiming to model real world weapon behaviors, there is little reason to bother with spread at all(for player controlled weapons). A spool up weapon design is something that's fine and likely will exist in some form.

_________________
"Not every idea your gonna have is gonna be great, but I guarentee you every idea that doesnt work will somehow work into the idea that does." -Derek Waters

"It's a weird feeling being borderline addicted to gaming and not having anything to play that I can tolerate at the same time." -DejZant

"No longer are you justified saying that an idea in science is not true because it doesn't make sense." -Neil deGrasse Tyson

@Saccaed for updates and randomness...


Tue May 07, 2013 2:58 am
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Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:33 am
Posts: 181
Post Re: Wild Ideas
Quote:
Its not like being good in close range is harder with other weapons against one who knows whats going on.


Because FPS games are rather gameplay oriented compared to games like MOBAs and RTSs, it matters more what a weapon feels like to have in a game, not how powerful it is. Essentially only the competetive players will ever care if something is balanced to the point of perfection. The vast majority of players will care about the feel of the gameplay, which is why issues like chains, gen camping, fractals (which are crap but annoying), and whatever the annoying part of any FPS you'll play will be, be that the so called noob tubes (which from my understanding, again, were crap but annoying) or chains, will be looked at through how annoying they are, not how good they are. The tribes comp focuses on balance and that's all you hear due to the small size of the community and dedicated community members usually being much more vocal, but the vast majority of players in games will not care about how hard it is to beat someone with X or Y, only how enjoyable that ends up being.

The same applies to more than just weapons. Everyone in your average FPS constantly complains about camping. It's not a good tactic, it's very inefficient, but it's frustrating. And because it is frustrating, people complain. It's not because it's a particularly good tactic or that it's unfair to people of other playstyles. It's purely because it's frustrating.


Tue May 07, 2013 12:46 pm
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Joined: Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:16 am
Posts: 143
Post Re: Wild Ideas
I'll join the discussion in a minute. For now, I'll throw some wood on the fire. A gun with a wood finish that is!
(I updated the OP with this info too - I'll be adding stuff as my brain comes up with it)


Weapons - Garand

I like to throw a wrench in the chaingun debate with this one. I'm showing some of my Mohaa/CoD background with this one.

So, first, wtf is a Garand -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M1_Garand
That.

This is a semi automatic weapon that has 8 rounds in a clip. It cannot be reloaded unless the clip is fully spent. When a clip is empty a loud 'ping' sound can be heard. It's the staple gun of the WW2 shooter. It could be considered a cut above other high accuracy weapons in WW2 shooters, but it was kept in the game because it was historical fact. It was balanced by reducing the amount of damage it did, although a headshot would still kill in one shot. It fit perfectly in the twitch 'one shot one kill' genre. CoD:MW destroyed the gentle balance of bolt and auto by clinging to weapons that were all designed to be overkill.

So what am I doing with this weapon in this game? A change of pace.
Let's imagine for a second that this the only projectile bullet weapon (non hitscan) in the game.
The core of this weapon is simple. Accurate moderate damage with a limited clip. I'd also like to severely limit the amount of ammo you can carry, a maximum of 4 to 6 clips of 8 bullets.
There are a lot of variables you can tweak on this thing:

- Energy on fire or reload (or an overheat mechanic that only taxes the 'orange' bar)
- a trigger delay to prevent scripting (this was the same with the Mohaa version, firing at a certain pace - not to slow not too fast. Clicking too fast would actually slow down the gun).
- Projectiles should be fast, but I think reverse falloff could be a good mechanic for this weapon to limit indoor dominance. A quirk for this gun could be to only let it do full damage on close range if its a headshot (or allow it to bypass armor that way). At long ranges headshots would not change anything.

A charge mechanic could be implemented, increasing damage the longer it is held. Energy would be consumed for the shot and perhaps additional bullets (maybe a full clip). This damage could be all sorts of things:
- Simple damage increase, to a max of double the damage.
- Negating of the reverse falloff
- Shot bypasses armor

There is also the possibility of making a fully charged shot that uses all energy and consumes a full clip become hitscan and so becoming the replacement of the railgun. I think the cost to energy (losing any additional mobility) and ammo (you have very few shots before you need to look for ammo) is high enough. I wouldn't increase the damage of this 'powershot' all too much. The price you pay is for hitscan and the utility it provides.

This weapon as a whole would be a faster version of the T1 blaster or the T:A Nova 'swag' blaster but the gameplay would be more suited for those types of weapon. Making it a bread and butter weapon next to the disk.
The chaingun can then be relegated to being a secondary damage source, low damage with an overheat mechanic and maybe an ELF mechanic embedded within.

In terms of model I'm looking at a black wood finish and maybe remnants of an M1 Garand gun that spent a little too much time in hell. Lore wise it's cool in a 'weapon from a forlorn age' type deal.
I consider Free Fall to be about breaking rules. I think, like the maps, every weapon can be a story on its own. Just a little different from all the rest. Like Starcraft, three completely different sets of mechanics on a solid foundation balancing each other out with their quirks.

_________________
Greth, much like Lilith, was one of Gods first children. He was subsequently banished from the garden of eden because he kept complaining about the lack of radial symmetry in the heightmap concept of the garden. The placement of the tree of wisdom was also lacking in strategic importance. All historical records featuring Greth, including Bible passages have been expunged since the early 12th century.


Tue May 07, 2013 3:34 pm
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Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2012 12:33 am
Posts: 181
Post Re: Wild Ideas
Quote:
Making it a bread and butter weapon next to the disk.

...

I consider Free Fall to be about breaking rules.


Implementing a chain of any type to function roughly the same way as in every single other tribes-esque is about breaking rules? Right.

Quote:
Making it a bread and butter weapon next to the disk.


This is bad game design. If you go with the bread and butter philosophy, you end up with the disaster that is shootmania or legions. Completely monotonic, boring, skill-less gameplay that nobody ends up liking. All implementations of chain manage to be somewhat all arounders, and implementing one means that you'll just end up with everyone using it anyway, so you'll end up with monotonic gameplay regardless of if you give the players options or not.


Tue May 07, 2013 4:22 pm
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Joined: Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:16 am
Posts: 143
Post Re: Wild Ideas
DejZant wrote:
Quote:
Making it a bread and butter weapon next to the disk.

...

I consider Free Fall to be about breaking rules.


Implementing a chain of any type to function roughly the same way as in every single other tribes-esque is about breaking rules? Right.

Quote:
Making it a bread and butter weapon next to the disk.


This is bad game design. If you go with the bread and butter philosophy, you end up with the disaster that is shootmania or legions. Completely monotonic, boring, skill-less gameplay that nobody ends up liking. All implementations of chain manage to be somewhat all arounders, and implementing one means that you'll just end up with everyone using it anyway, so you'll end up with monotonic gameplay regardless of if you give the players options or not.


So throwing away the whole idea on the account of me using that terminology.
Let's not call it bread and butter then, let's call it a 'staple' gun. Much like how the disk was staple to tribes but not always used in every situation.

The idea of the garand is to reduce the use of that type of weapon. Look at all the variables I threw in there. The low ammo would mean you'd only use it when you needed it most. There are a lot of drawbacks being implemented to allow the mechanic just so it doesn't become the be all and end all gun.

It's not a chain weapon. It's a projectile bullet weapon. It's semi automatic. And severely gimped.

_________________
Greth, much like Lilith, was one of Gods first children. He was subsequently banished from the garden of eden because he kept complaining about the lack of radial symmetry in the heightmap concept of the garden. The placement of the tree of wisdom was also lacking in strategic importance. All historical records featuring Greth, including Bible passages have been expunged since the early 12th century.


Tue May 07, 2013 4:51 pm
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Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 10:02 am
Posts: 114
Post Re: Wild Ideas
Allways nice with more ideas, keep brainstorming.

about the chaingun... how about you make your version and make a version that goes against everything you plan for your "chaingun" weapon, but still within acceptable variables. With almost no spool time/spread/no overheating etc.

thinking about it too much might make you "over-analyze" it, and it might acctually turn out to be a boring weapon.

about hitscan railgun... i dont think a "quake:ish variant" of this weapon should be in the game, cuase it would be so much better than a projectile weapon at targets moving at high speed.(id accept railgun if it completely wiped the energy tho. or adding a curve to the projectile? :> )


Tue May 07, 2013 6:25 pm
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