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Bringing back gambitsFollow

#1 Jun 13 2009 at 4:06 PM Rating: Good
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What do people think about the idea of putting FFXII's gambit system into an MMO?

There's quite a divide in opinion on gambits. Personally, I loved them, but in a game like FFXII where you were managing an entire party in real time, they were essential. In something like FFXIV where you're only controlling one player, it might be a different story.

Or maybe not. If the speed of the battle system is increased significantly, it could be a very useful addition. In FFXII I think most of us used gambits even on the party leader, automating the micromanagement portion of the battle so that we could focus on the big picture. Suppose that as a mage in FFXIV you could program your character to automatically handle the tedious stuff like the buff/debuff cycle every battle, leaving you free to handle emergencies or other aspects that require more skill. It might even work to allow a WHM to automate most of their cure actions, if there were enough other things about the job to keep the player busy. Every player might be a little bit different in what they want to leave up to their gambits and what they consider interesting enough to handle personally.

I think there's a lot of potential there, even if it would have to be implemented carefully.
#2 Jun 13 2009 at 4:20 PM Rating: Good
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With one character it really is unnecessary. I'm very much against the idea of combat turning into a situation where I mostly watch my character perform automated actions. The game then becomes a very boring movie. I think combat should be dynamic enough to require--and interesting enough to invite--constant player control.

I see gambits transforming the game into Diablo 2 style play. What I mean by that is that in Diablo 2 the bulk of the decisions made by the player are in equipping your character and choosing which skills to level up. You make a lot of decisions out of combat, but very few decisions in combat. Most of actually playing of Diablo 2 is about simply executing the build you designed, spamming one skill over and over.

There is fun to be had in prep work: coming up with creative gambits that carry out battle effective. But that isn't the kind of fun I'm looking for in most MMORPGs.
#3 Jun 13 2009 at 4:56 PM Rating: Excellent
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Hmmm, I imagine Gambits would play out something like this...

Badassbossofdoom readies omgwtfbbqofdeath.
(Party leader) <Stun> <Stun> <Stun>
Badassbossofdoom uses omgwtfbbqofdeath.
YourTank falls to the ground.
(party member #2) wtf who was suppose to stun that?!
(RDM/DRK) Sorry guys my Refresh gambit was in the middle of casting ; ;
(Party member #3) OMFG lazy *** RDMs GTFO!

...more or less
#4 Jun 13 2009 at 5:14 PM Rating: Excellent
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I'd like to see it, but not for your characters. I'd like to see it for NPCs, something akin to fellows. I really like that system, and I think that "gambits" would improve it.
#5 Jun 13 2009 at 10:50 PM Rating: Good
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It's a nice idea, however it would be exploited. Gambits = botting. That's what it will boil down to. Unfortunately I don't see this happening in a MMO.

Unless it's like Ildon suggested, that would make fellows incredibly useful!

Edited, Jun 14th 2009 2:56am by Tubrudi
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#6 Jun 13 2009 at 11:01 PM Rating: Good
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As a FFXII hater, I am against the idea. I just never liked it. *shrug*
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#7 Jun 14 2009 at 12:02 AM Rating: Good
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IDrownFish wrote:
As a FFXII hater, I am against the idea. I just never liked it. *shrug*


Ahh, really? I really enjoyed FFXII, hate to hear you didn't like it.

As for the op, I really thought the gambit system was intuitive and solid, but don't think it would fit the MMO play-style - seems a little "loose" for an MMO if that makes any sense.

Edited, Jun 14th 2009 4:02am by Kotisu
#8 Jun 14 2009 at 12:06 AM Rating: Good
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I'd rather the game be interesting and engaging, instead of something for me to do while I read a book.
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#9 Jun 14 2009 at 12:27 AM Rating: Good
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Gambits would basically be self-execution macros, basically like Windower's Spellcast. While it would be nice to extent it farther than that, there's too many variables in the game to set just one absolute. Would do more harm than good.
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#10 Jun 14 2009 at 6:53 AM Rating: Decent
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No thanks. It worked in FFXII, I liked it. But not in an MMO. I want the battles a little faster and more engaging with more abilities. I don't want combat to be even more mindless than it is now. Autoattack is enough, other skills are your responsibility.
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#11 Jun 14 2009 at 10:18 AM Rating: Excellent
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Allegory wrote:
With one character it really is unnecessary. I'm very much against the idea of combat turning into a situation where I mostly watch my character perform automated actions. The game then becomes a very boring movie.

Well, it's a sliding scale. FFXI already automated some portions of the battle system, most notably melee attacks. Someone looked at that portion of combat and realized there was nothing to be gained by having the player push the attack button every 5 seconds.

My take on this: if an action can be handled by a one-line if/then statement, it probably wasn't much fun in the first place.

Quote:
I think combat should be dynamic enough to require--and interesting enough to invite--constant player control.

Dynamic and interesting should always be the goal, certainly. But in the reality of a game like this, odds are there are always going to be some of those more menial tasks: swinging the sword, debuffing, routine healing, etc.

Far from making the game boring, I actually think that a gambit system is just the thing to ensure combat stays interesting. For example, look at auto-attack. If this hadn't been implemented, it would have been very easy for melee jobs to end up doing hardly anything more than constantly attacking, as it's been in some past games. When that task was eliminated, the developers were forced to examine each job from the ground up and put in some more interesting actions. As a result, we got things like weapon skills, skillchains, and plenty of job abilities. A dull, repetitive task was replaced by tasks requiring more attention and skill.

It seems to me that the natural thing to do is to follow this trend and see where it takes us. What other brainless tasks are there in the course of a battle? Engaging the monster, maybe? The Provoke cycle? Remove them from the player's direct control and see what's left of the job. If it isn't much -- as arguably might be the case with, say, WHM and some melee jobs -- then that's a problem with the job, not the gambit system. At that point you would need to look at seriously and fundamentally redesigning the job so that it's fun with the menial tasks removed. Do that with each job and I guarantee you're going to come out of it with a stronger, smarter battle system.
#12 Jun 14 2009 at 10:54 AM Rating: Good
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Did FFXII even allow you to turn gambits on for all 3 combat characters? I swear I remember you had to personally control the actions of at least one of the three (though you could set your character to move in combat automatically I think)
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#13 Jun 14 2009 at 10:57 AM Rating: Decent
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Yes you could set up gambit for everyone. You 'controlled' one but could switch between them. Whoever you controlled would still do their gambits but you could interrupt them and give them your own specific commands if you wanted them to do something different.
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#14 Jun 14 2009 at 11:02 AM Rating: Good
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Kotisu wrote:
[quote=IDrownFish]Ahh, really? I really enjoyed FFXII, hate to hear you didn't like it.

My main complaint with FFXII was the same complaint I have with any RPG that makes all the characters identical in combat capabilities.

To me, an important part of a character is how they fight. A character's fighting style should reflect their personality.

Even if the characters can ultimately all end up in the same place, like in FFX, at least they spent most of the game fighting differently. Lulu was a black mage. Yuna was a White Mage / Summoner. In the last 5-10% of the game, yes, they were both essentially red mages. But their character was already established. At the end of the game, Yuna was still a White Mage, but she had learned to cast some Black Magic. Lulu was still a Black Mage, who had learned to cast a few White Magic spells.

But FFXII? The only character that had a well defined class at the start of the game was Balthier, as a gunner. Even then, it was early in the game when became closer to being my white mage than a ranged status effect inflicting damage dealer.
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#15 Jun 14 2009 at 11:10 AM Rating: Decent
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While I usually agree, to me the fun of FFXII was defining your own roles. Penelo was my black mage. Ashe was a bit of a mage as well as usuing magic oriented weapons like the katana. Balthier and Fran were my berserked powerhouses while Vaan and Bashe were tanks. Everyone used different weapons for the most part and armor that complimented their roles. You'd have to train an awful lot to get enough ap to fill the board.
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#16 Jun 14 2009 at 11:35 AM Rating: Good
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Raymund wrote:
While I usually agree, to me the fun of FFXII was defining your own roles. Penelo was my black mage. Ashe was a bit of a mage as well as usuing magic oriented weapons like the katana. Balthier and Fran were my berserked powerhouses while Vaan and Bashe were tanks. Everyone used different weapons for the most part and armor that complimented their roles. You'd have to train an awful lot to get enough ap to fill the board.

For me? Ashe was a Paladin / Berserker (and the character I usually controled). Balthier was my White Mage / Green Mage, and Fran was my Black Mage on magic weak bosses, or a Genji-Masamune Berserker on magic resistant bosses (A fully buffed 75% chance to do an average of a 9 hit combo with 300% attack speed and 200% damage attacks? YES PLEASE!).

Penelo, Vaan and Bashe? Level 12 phoenix down slaves on tough fights.

No shared EXP in that game... But you didn't need a ton of AP to fill most of the useful abilities on the board. I think I was somewhere around 60% through the game before every character had all the most useful abilities on the board, and everything left was utter junk. I filled up every single slot on the board just because, and this was before I reached the final plot boss.

Edited, Jun 14th 2009 3:40pm by Karelyn
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#17 Jun 14 2009 at 11:44 AM Rating: Decent
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Gambit system could be pretty **** awesome for pet jobs, IMO. I think Puppetmasters in XI would have been much better if they added that system to control the puppet. SE could really well use it this time in XIV to control your pets, at least in the case when you can't give direct orders (PUP).
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#18 Jun 14 2009 at 11:59 AM Rating: Good
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Hyanmen wrote:
Gambit system could be pretty **** awesome for pet jobs, IMO. I think Puppetmasters in XI would have been much better if they added that system to control the puppet. SE could really well use it this time in XIV to control your pets, at least in the case when you can't give direct orders (PUP).

I agree, at least a simple gambit system is virtually required for a pet job to function well. But there has to be conscious thought to insure that AFK farming/leveling does not become a problem.

An example from another game:

Ragnarok Online added a class called an Alchemist with a Homunculus pet to the game, which had fairly powerful programmable AIs, in the style of gambits. Ever since the Homunculus's were added, the game designers have had to struggle heavily with it.

Who cares if you are only getting 400EXP per hour standing in one spot and letting your pet kill really weak enemies instead of 3000EXP per hour while leveling in a group, if you can do it AFK? (Yes I know FFXIV won't have EXP in it, the same principle will still apply though)

Even worse than the possibility of AFK Leveling though, is that of AFK Farming. A game with gambit pet AI absolutely positively cannot have an auto-loot function. Otherwise the pets can and WILL be used for AFK farming, and you can easily imagine the devastation such a thing would wreck upon the economy.
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#19 Jun 14 2009 at 12:10 PM Rating: Decent
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There has to be a some kind of "attack a monster if master is aggroed" or some other kind of auto-attack gambit for that to work, though? The master would still have to order the pet to attack the mob?
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#20 Jun 14 2009 at 1:59 PM Rating: Decent
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While I wouldn't go as far as adding gambits as they were in ffxii, I do want more options. If I was a smn I would like how carby automatically attacks anything that attacks me, but if a fishy was following me around he'd attack it too. That I wouldn't like. The option to have carby either attack whatever attacks me or to not attack whatever attacks me would be awesome. More options similar to that would be awesome, but being able to automate everything isn't something I'd want.
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#21 Jun 14 2009 at 4:56 PM Rating: Decent
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In WoW you don't get exp unless you yourself hit the mob at least once. That way you can't just afk and let your pet kill everything for you.
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#22 Jun 14 2009 at 4:59 PM Rating: Good
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I can dig it for 'pets' but I'm not so sure about live characters. It just feels like when you get to that level of automation then what's the point? I stopped playing FFXI in part because I was tired of seeing people constantly complain about how the game was being made too easy yet squeal like giddy schoolgirls whenever some new addon for windower let you play blindfolded.
#23 Jun 14 2009 at 7:15 PM Rating: Decent
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If they put in something like adventuring fellows, gambits would be a cool extra touch. Maybe your fellow starts out with a very simple routine like "heal me when I'm under 50%" or "attack the thing that I attack" but as you/your fellow level up, the options become more complex (just as they did in FFXII).

Come to think of it I'd REALLY like to see adventuring fellows become a much bigger part of the game. That would allow combat to still be party/multi character centric, but you'd have more opportunity to play in smaller parties or solo. This could be a good way to create the casual/hardcore compromise. If you want to solo, you do so at the expense of having a relatively "dumb" companion (until later levels, when he/she is as smart as you are able to make them).

It would be interesting to me to see if people would trust a "fellow" as the main healer or tank for the party.
#24 Jun 15 2009 at 11:20 AM Rating: Good
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Quote:
It would be interesting to me to see if people would trust a "fellow" as the main healer or tank for the party.


I don't know how I'd feel on the flip side -- being a healer and not being needed because people can just bring a fellow around. I think if they were in, they'd have to be at best "not as good as a good player-controlled healer".
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#25 Jun 15 2009 at 11:48 AM Rating: Good
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Add me to the haters list.
Unfortunately I thought the gambit system was unecessary and the game would have been alot better if the characters just flat out had AI.

If they diduse this system though, I think more essential ones should have been there from the start. The fact that Charge(or whatever the MP restore move was) could only be assigned near to the end of the game ****** me off majorly. As far as it goes I wish they would add a more mainstream fellow with smart AI, to help you soloing imo.
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#26 Jun 15 2009 at 11:53 AM Rating: Decent
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I wouldn't mind a gambitesque system for any NPC fellow type characters. It would be cool if there are quests w/ NPCs assistance that you can recommend a fighting style for. That would actually help out with the whole "more solo friendly" idea. If some missions came with a NPC, a DD could ask them to be a healer while a WHM/support class could ask the NPC to DD.
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#27 Jun 15 2009 at 11:57 AM Rating: Good
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You'd prefer the computer picking what your AI controller characters did instead of making them do what you want them to do? Um, why?
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#28 Jun 15 2009 at 12:02 PM Rating: Decent
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I don't think gambits would work well on your main character but gambits should defiantly be added to pets/fellower. If we could add gambits to pets it would mean uniqueness. everyone who has pets wont all be the same with the same AI they would be able to do different things... ok im rambling you get my point.
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#29 Jun 15 2009 at 12:45 PM Rating: Decent
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Raymund wrote:
You'd prefer the computer picking what your AI controller characters did instead of making them do what you want them to do? Um, why?


Re read what you just wrote, and think about it.

Do I want the computer picking what my AI controlled character does? I think it's a given that the whole "AI controlled" thing means the computer is controlling the action, yes? If not, then it would be my character. By definition, an AI controlled character is being run by the machine.

As far as "Instead of making them do what you want them to do..." that's the entire point. A gambit system allows YOU to decide what they do, without having to control them in real time. You essentially program them, so that if you don't want your fellow wasting MP on Sleepna, then he won't, but if you do, then he will.

Let me put it another way: A gambit system would give you MORE control over your fellow than what you currently have. Is that a bad thing?


Edit: And it doesn't even necessarily have to be the same as the FFXII gambit system. The important thing is that you have some ability to control your fellow that goes beyond setting them in a "stance," yet doesn't involve a ton micro management.

A system like this for pets would be (as far as I know) completely unprecedented in any MMO, which is alone a good enough reason to consider it.



Edited, Jun 15th 2009 4:48pm by KarlHungis
#30 Jun 15 2009 at 12:51 PM Rating: Decent
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Kharmageddon wrote:
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It would be interesting to me to see if people would trust a "fellow" as the main healer or tank for the party.


I don't know how I'd feel on the flip side -- being a healer and not being needed because people can just bring a fellow around. I think if they were in, they'd have to be at best "not as good as a good player-controlled healer".


I felt like it went without saying that they would be inferior to a player controlled character, but I guess it actually has to be said.

It's not so much "I'd like to see them replace players who are available" as "if the right player isn't available, the party isn't totally crippled while looking for a replacement."
#31 Jun 15 2009 at 1:45 PM Rating: Decent
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Er, with regards to my last post, I was replying to a post I thought I read. i should have ben more clear. Of course, I can't seem to find that post anymore so I imagined it or they erased it. Basically the person was saying, in relation to FFXII, that they didn't like gambits and preferred the computer to control the characters, or that's how I interpretted it. So I was just saying how much better gambits are than just leaving the computer to do their own thing because gambits give you more control and they'll act smarter usually. Aaaaaaaanyway, moving on.
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#32 Jun 15 2009 at 2:15 PM Rating: Decent
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I believe you mean this post.

ditx wrote:
Unfortunately I thought the gambit system was unecessary and the game would have been alot better if the characters just flat out had AI.


And I agree. I prefer an AI that I have a little control of over one that's entirely preset.
#33 Jun 15 2009 at 2:20 PM Rating: Default
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NO!
IT WOULD NOT WORK IF YOU'RE ONLY ONE PLAYER!
I'M FINE WITH MACROS, THANKS!
AND IF YOU WANT SOMEONE TO PLAY FOR YOU, HIRE A JAPANESE GUY ON CRAGSLIST TO PLAY FOR YOU!!!
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#34 Jun 15 2009 at 2:34 PM Rating: Decent
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Ah yeah, that's the one. Thanks Ildon.
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#35 Jun 15 2009 at 4:45 PM Rating: Decent
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FFXI singleplayer remake with gambits please. ^^
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#37 Jun 15 2009 at 6:17 PM Rating: Good
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Gambits were truly what ruined FFXII for me. I *hated* that game, if you could even consider it one. Why would I want to play a game that plays itself for me?


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#38 Jun 15 2009 at 6:28 PM Rating: Good
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I'd more than welcome a Gambit systems for NPCs we could create, recruit, and otherwise nurture in progress along with our own characters. From the player perspective, if you're only interested in being a healer, then you'll have a guaranteed tank or DD to help you do whatever if your friends aren't around or you don't have much time to dedicate to anything really deep. Now, this isn't to say SE can't include some kind of upkeep cost to these, either in literally buying them armor, having to go back to towns to pay for their revivals, and so on.

Gambit options also add another possible type of vendor or drop for players to go after, perpetuating the time sink concept we know SE loves and MMOs tend to thrive on. How a player would use them is ultimately up to them. Individual player control, however, should not be so automated.
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