Forum Settings
       
This Forum is Read Only

Randomly generated content?Follow

#1 Feb 07 2010 at 8:50 PM Rating: Good
Scholar
**
398 posts
The leve system does open up the possability for some tweaks to the idea of redoing certain types of content. Randomly generated content would fit well into the leve system, since you would have access to a leve you can share with a group only one person needs to have the leve to get others in..

By R.G.C. I mean alterations to evisting areas and creatures to freshen up the location and the experiance for the duration of the quest, it would require something like what WoW has done with the phased content (can't remember what they call it hehe). The FFXIV devs have said that leve mobs will be for those on that particular leve only, so atuned areas and content isn't to big of a leap IMO.

I would make it some kind of token turn in like the BCNMs were to limit the wacky stuff and keep them from getting to confusing, keeping them to highend content would also be ideal I think.


So what do you think of the idea of randomly generated leves, How would you impliment something like this if at all?
#2 Feb 07 2010 at 10:03 PM Rating: Good
My understanding of the guildleve system is that they'll be mostly (if not entirely) instanced, not phased. Instanced means that you and your group have a designated area that is exclusive to your group. Phasing is Blizzard's word for areas where the geography/mob placement and visibility is different based on certain criteria even though you're sharing the same virtual space with other players. It's also extremely server intensive, and if you're talking about phasing multiple areas of multiple zones to accommodate guildleves, SE would have to be putting forward some pretty robust servers to pull it off.

If some/most/all of the guildleve content is to take place in "shared" virtual space (ie. players not in your group can see you and you can see them), random geography is not really an option. About the best SE could do would be to change spawn locations/times and types/numbers of mobs.

For instanced guildleves, there's only so much you can do with random before even the randomness becomes transparent and dull. What's worse is that making it too random is inevitably going to lead to complaints that Bob's random incarnation of <guildleve A> was easier than Jeff's version of the same guildleve...Bob was successful and Jeff's group failed, therefore the guildleve system is inherently unfair.

I appreciate the potential benefit a randomized system could create, but any benefit has to be weighed against the potential consequences. I'd rather see SE explicitly develop the content all the way than pass a bunch of it off to RNG.
#3 Feb 08 2010 at 12:38 AM Rating: Good
**
353 posts
I think he was talking more about something like City of Heroes / villains.
Where missions take place in a set area that is somewhat randomly generated with variations on what mobs / objective locations. Each person in the party would see the same area, but after everyone leaves the instance is purged and the next time you enter it generates a new one.
My only dislike about said system is that the random layout generator tended to create bland layouts with somewhat predictable placements. But if FFXIV can do this without the blandness, I think it would be a nice system. Just go to the crystal, and teleport to the guild-leave site that is randomly generated to fulfill the objectives of the leave.
____________________________
My brother is an Emo-DRK, I am a kind PLD.
Go figure.

Monks do it with their hands.
Scholars do it in the classroom.
Puppetmasters do it with dolls.
Ninjas do it and then disappear.
Thieves do it then run away.
#4 Feb 08 2010 at 2:18 PM Rating: Good
**
800 posts
I like the idea of random content, but I'm skeptical that it can be done well.

I play LoTRO now, and they recently released a new game mechanic called "skirmishes" which are fixed landscape instances with random waves of mobs. Only there's a fairly small number of waves to choose from, and they always occur at the same time and place. The goal is always to just kill everything, sometimes while defending an NPC. So it really doesn't feel random.

I'd prefer non-random yet deeply strategic, immersing, and/or difficult content. Random is by definition impossible to balance.

Edited, Feb 8th 2010 2:18pm by Hydragyrum
#5 Feb 08 2010 at 8:45 PM Rating: Decent
Scholar
***
2,801 posts
Quote:
My only dislike about said system is that the random layout generator tended to create bland layouts with somewhat predictable placements. But if FFXIV can do this without the blandness, I think it would be a nice system. Just go to the crystal, and teleport to the guild-leave site that is randomly generated to fulfill the objectives of the leave.


That would be nice, but incredibly hard to do well. The logistics involved in creating something that seems random but also has to be playable is hard enough. Add that it has to "seem different" every time and you're talking about something that is near impossible to do (at least to do it WELL).

If anyone has ever played the Disgaea series (which, by the way, is an AWESOME series), you'll know about Item World. Item World is supposed to be a randomly generated dungeon that you go through in order to max out your items. The trouble is, that Nippon Ichi (the game developers) couldn't make it terribly random. You'll see different layouts for different levels, but they tended to come in about one of four or five slightly augmented ways. Cool idea? Certainly! Very random? No, but it was random enough to keep it fun.
____________________________
WoW -- Zaia -- Dragonmaw -- Mage 80 BABY! Alchemy 450
Also... Hunter 62, Rogue 52, Warrior 66, Warlock 43, Death Knight 70, Shaman Who Cares? ;)

FFXI -- Caia -- Retired/Deleted -- Blm 75, Alchemy 97
Pandimonium server - Rank 10 - Bastok

Zaela Rdm -- 35, Alchemy 45 -- Forced into retirement because I didn't have the right kind of credit card. Hope it was worth 18 bucks a month, SE.

#6 Feb 08 2010 at 8:46 PM Rating: Excellent
**
736 posts
My only real issue with procedurally generated dungeons is that it isn't conducive to storytelling ala' enviornment.
Which is to say, using the environment to help establish the mood or enhance the plot. Compare and contrast the environments of procedurally generated DiabloIII to hand crafted Bioshock. Graphically they're similar, atmospheric narrative is a different story.

That being said, Procedurally generated dungeons and hand crafted dungeons can walk hand in hand. This has been done to some success in Oblivion, where essentially content that didn't have much story behind it was randomized, and content that was important to the story was picked over with a fine toothed comb.

I could see a person's argument for this with the guildleve structure of FFXIV.

For something like, killing 10 rats for the guildleve of Diligence? Sure. Random that to pieces. I don't mind.
For something like, epic dungeon that will lead to boss fight that is the culmination of several engrossing cutscenes?
I want handcrafted love digitally infused into every pixel.



Edited, Feb 8th 2010 9:55pm by Zemzelette
#7 Feb 09 2010 at 3:18 PM Rating: Good
Scholar
38 posts
Essentially randomly determining which dungeon you'll get to be in out of X number of dungeon designs for that particular dungeon. I think could be pretty cool.
____________________________

COGS
LV75 NIN, LV 75 DRK
Pandemonium Server
#8 Feb 09 2010 at 6:38 PM Rating: Good
COGSs wrote:
Essentially randomly determining which dungeon you'll get to be in out of X number of dungeon designs for that particular dungeon. I think could be pretty cool.


Pretty cool until you realize that the game has 1/5 the content it could have because the developers spend all that extra time designing alternative layouts for the same content instead of new content. It takes a substantial amount of developer time to create the environments our characters wander around in. Even if it's a tweak on an original map layout to make it turn left instead of right or slop up instead of down, it's still a time consuming process.
#9 Feb 09 2010 at 7:17 PM Rating: Good
Guru
Avatar
*****
11,078 posts
If Lufia could do randomly generated content with the Deep Dungeon way back in the 90s, I don't see why XIV couldn't. XI even did it to some degree with Nyzul. I guess the real trick is having modular terrain you can connect and recolor as appropriate, but randomly generated terrain also needs to be careful to not create areas you can't proceed through.
____________________________
Violence good. **** bad. Yay America.
#10 Feb 09 2010 at 7:24 PM Rating: Good
Seriha wrote:
If Lufia could do randomly generated content with the Deep Dungeon way back in the 90s, I don't see why XIV couldn't. XI even did it to some degree with Nyzul. I guess the real trick is having modular terrain you can connect and recolor as appropriate, but randomly generated terrain also needs to be careful to not create areas you can't proceed through.


That's largely the issue...terrain is a lot more complex now than it was 10-15 years ago. At least, it is if you want it to be on par with current expectations of visual appeal. Generating the dungeons is something that would have to be done server side for a variety of reasons, so you'd be looking at server load to generate a random dungeon for every group entering a dungeon on the realm/realm group, plus bandwidth to transmit the layout to each person in the group. (Think mini-patch every time you enter a dungeon). In the end it's not the idea itself that squashes its viability...it's the implementation of the idea.
#11 Feb 10 2010 at 2:16 AM Rating: Good
**
336 posts
I'd rather have a more expansive main/open world. I wouldn't mind a few BCNM-type things that are randomized and I imagine Guildleves have a set of parameters that will randomly put quests together (outside of possibly "main" leves that are set in stone) but what I want to most is to still feel like I'm in the MMO's main living world, not some extra-dimensional hallway that's cut off from everything.
#12 Feb 10 2010 at 2:36 AM Rating: Good
Westyle wrote:
I'd rather have a more expansive main/open world. I wouldn't mind a few BCNM-type things that are randomized and I imagine Guildleves have a set of parameters that will randomly put quests together (outside of possibly "main" leves that are set in stone) but what I want to most is to still feel like I'm in the MMO's main living world, not some extra-dimensional hallway that's cut off from everything.


You can only create so many areas in a game world based on development constraints, and those areas have to be divided up to provide content for people across the full scope of progression possibilities. Instanced content helps to prevent situations where your group ends up wanting to do the same thing as ten other groups in an area that can barely support two groups. It also reduces time sinks involved in waiting for respawns. I don't expect too many guildleves to be really all that random. I expect that there will be many coded guildleves that are offered to your character based on your particular level of progression.

It wouldn't surprise me to find guildleves that have a random component, but that random factor would be related more to the mechanics than the terrain. This Assault mission would be an example of a random component vs. random terrain and/or mob placement. It's also the kind of random that I'd frankly prefer not to see. I used to run that mission with my Assault LS/static shortly before I stopped playing FFXI. Despite being the same group that roflstomped CoP, we failed that mission almost as often as we cleared it simply due to the random factor. Sitting there as a DD not being able to do anything because you risk killing the mob you're counting on to break down the gate only to have them use Firespit instead of their WS over and over again while the clock winds down was pretty harsh. I prefer a setup where success/failure is based on your ability to do things right, not potentially unmerciful RNG.
#13 Feb 11 2010 at 11:14 AM Rating: Decent
Scholar
**
295 posts
First things first, I would have to shoot myself if I had to do missions in the same set of 5 hallways and 10 rooms randomly put together in different ways.

Displacements can't be randomly generated in the way you people are thinking. Well, they could, but they would look like crap.

What I liked about FFXI is that everything fit together. They even had 2 zones that would apparently be not connected connected somehow. King Ronperre's Tomb is a great example of a WIN dungeon in ffxi.

Now, I'm biased cause it was my favorite dungeon in ffxi for low levels, but how they managed to fit together East Ronfaure, Jugner forest, and the tomb was excellent. Then they took it a step further and used that one section of the tomb as litterally a way to connect East Ronfaure [s] to Jugner Forest [s].

I dunno about you guys, but making a terrain then 5 years later making alternate layouts for the land that fit within the existing terrain is pretty damned impressive.




As far as missions go, I think that the guild leves will work something like Prommies did. Missions will be on the Promy layout where there is a mission area or dungeon with a boss at the end to fight. They had a ton of success with promy's and people liking to play them, so I think they will use this to create a mold for how to make story line missions in ffxiv.

At the same time, These mission areas will be isntanced, so they would dedicate some space on the server so that you could have something like 5 people running a mission at the same time. This would be an effective way to resolve the issue with having to schedule events like dynamis. imagine that the guild leves would make a system that would also make things like dynamis available to up to x groups per server at any given time, for every area available for that type of mission.

At this point, you wouldn't have to schedule so far in advanced when to go into an area, but rather just schedule when you want to do something like that.
#14 Feb 11 2010 at 11:29 AM Rating: Good
I can't imagine they will have the Random Dungeon generator for all the Guildleves. I think it would feel far to mechanical and less like a fantasy. The could make it in the open field but have instanced monsters/quest items lead you on the path to your mark for the leve. But unlike the old ??? system, I think it would make the game far more exciting if the battles and whatnot started the second you walked into range/passed a specific marker. This would give a greater sense of peril to the players and keep you on your toes. Also they could disable aggro from other monsters if you are in a guildleve instance, but this is SE, I can't imagine them cutting us any breaksSmiley: lol

Edited, Feb 11th 2010 11:34am by Luceo
____________________________
This forum is read only
This Forum is Read Only!
Recent Visitors: 16 All times are in CST
Anonymous Guests (16)