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Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Wed May 14, 2014 4:46 pm
by Nimrod
The way players set their attributes has undergone a drastic change. One we hope is for the better. In the past one would simply list the attributes in order of importance from one to seven.

i.e. Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence, Constitution, Presence, Willpower, Agility.

Attribs listed first were considered more important and those at the end were less important. Code then set your levels based on the order. Players had very little control.

The new system allows you to set the importance of each attribute on a scale of 10 to 1. MOST IMPORTANT = 10 and MOST UNIMPORTANT = 1.

There are 10,000,0000 different ways to rank your attributes, so players will have the ability to really tweak attributes for their characters how they see fit.

There are several steps to setting attribute values when a character is approved.

The first step sets the BASE value for each attribute. This is a proprietary process that does involve a small bit of randomness.

The second step takes into account the levels set for each attribute by the player and distributes an additional POOL of points to each that also includes a small bit of random value.

A very basic way of understanding how the pool distribution works is to think of it as assigning percentages of the pool when you are assigning the importance during chargen. (Remember MOST IMPORTANT = 10 and MOST UNIMPORTANT = 1) I will be referencing numeric values throughout the rest of this post rather than the verbose descriptions).

Let's say that we've got the following settings for our attributes that were made by the player who is most interested in combat and not so interested in books.

STR = 9 [9/46 = 19.5%]
INT = 2 [2/46 = 4.3%]
WIL = 3 [3/46 = 6.5%]
CON = 6 [6/46 = 13%]
DEX = 10 [10/46 = 21.7%]
PRE = 6 [6/46 = 13%]
AGI = 10 [10/46 = 21.7%]

The numbers listed after each attribute in brackets is the percentage of the pool that will be assigned.

The POOL is then divided up by the ratios listed above and tacked on to the BASE value of each attribute. (Remember there's also a minor bit of randomness along each step of the way as well.)

Next we look at the character and apply some extra bonuses based on height, weight, and Intelligence. The extent that I'll go to to explain this step is simply to state that heavier is stronger, lighter is quicker and smarter is smarter.

The next step is to apply racial bonuses.

The last step is to ensure that the character conforms to the maximum totals that we have determined for each race (+/- an undisclosed value). Suffice it to say that all humans will be within a range of 5% of one another.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Wed May 14, 2014 4:58 pm
by Nimrod
Players that wish to maximize the level of a specific attribute may set those attributes to the highest priority and all the rest to the lowest. This will effectively apply the bulk of the pool points to the two preferred attributes.

If there is a single attribute that you wish to maximize you may set all the rest to the lowest value and then the bulk of the pool points will be assigned to that single attribute.

Setting all attributes to the same priority level (it doesn't matter if they're all 10, 5 or 1), you'll get a very nice distribution of attribute values that will not vary other than through racial and stat bonuses along with the built in randomness along the way.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Wed May 14, 2014 8:55 pm
by Throttle
Next we look at the character and apply some extra bonuses based on height, weight, and Intelligence. The extent that I'll go to to explain this step is simply to state that heavier is stronger, lighter is quicker and smarter is smarter.
Can you explain the intelligence bit? The way it's worded, it seems to suggest that having high int gives a further bonus to int, which sounds odd.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Thu May 15, 2014 12:03 am
by Nimrod
None of the attributes are linear. Intelligence is slightly more non-linear than the rest and it could possibly affect other attributes. Does that help?

FYI - Intelligence will have a lot of influence throughout the game in many, many ways. I'm not going to get into the specifics, but I will say that the intelligence attribute should not be ignored. Even warriors will benefit by having a healthy intelligence level.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Thu May 15, 2014 12:10 am
by Nimrod
I'm a real fan of this system. Not just because I wrote it, but because it give so much control to the player. If you want to be a big, dumb brute that's Samson-Strong, you can do it. Don't expect to be very coordinated, but you can get the big numbers on a single attribute if you wish.

This system will allow for many different fighting styles that may be pitted against one another. Some styles may dominate a few other styles, but be weaker against some others. Scouts will really be able to tweak their skills too, so hiding and sneaking around with heavy weapons or armor will be hard, but if you're wearing the appropriate garb, you can really rock your role.

Crafters can also increase their productivity and rise more quickly with a properly selected set of attributes.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:20 pm
by Matt
The way this new system works is pretty awesome.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:33 pm
by Nimrod
Thanks, Matt. I've spent a lot of time working on it and I would agree.

We've got a lot of folks reporting problems with stats not being exactly how they set them in chargen, but the system is working as intended right now. We did have a few minor problems at the beginning, but we've worked them out. In fact, you now have even MORE control that we set initially.

Some things to consider when choosing stats:

If you want one stat really high, set that one as most important and the others all very low.

Setting a bunch of stats to most important and just a couple as low does not mean that all those stats you've set as most important will be at peak levels.

If you want a good overall level in all stats, set them all to very important. This will give you the basic default values across the board before applying the randomization process and accounting for race and size.

There is some randomness involved.

Size matters.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Fri Jun 06, 2014 7:57 am
by kestrel
Definitely good stuff to know. Thanks for elaborating!

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 5:12 pm
by BoogtehWoog
Cheers on this new system! 8-)

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 5:25 pm
by RiderOnTheStorm
BoogtehWoog wrote:Cheers on this new system! 8-)
Agreed, currently being on my...5th(?) character and having run through it a few times, I love it.

It really does let you customize pretty well what you want. And I really love the fact that it affects your skills. Tanking dex? Enjoy your lower than average starting Dual Wield. Maxing dex/int on a crafter? Your crafts will have a sizeable boost to their starting level.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Sun Jun 15, 2014 6:19 pm
by toofast
RiderOnTheStorm wrote:
BoogtehWoog wrote:Cheers on this new system! 8-)
Agreed, currently being on my...5th(?) character and having run through it a few times, I love it.

It really does let you customize pretty well what you want. And I really love the fact that it affects your skills. Tanking dex? Enjoy your lower than average starting Dual Wield. Maxing dex/int on a crafter? Your crafts will have a sizeable boost to their starting level.
Probably not lower than average, considering everyone and their brother with a knack for the code is ditching dex.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 5:30 am
by Droll
toofastnig wrote:Probably not lower than average, considering everyone and their brother with a knack for the code is ditching dex.
For those of us who are definitely masters of code, what's wrong with dex?

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 5:40 am
by Letters
I can say with some confidence that dexterity has a considerable impact on starting skill levels (and presumably caps, and possibly, if Nimrod tinkered with it, learning rates) for the skills that use it. It's no longer completely useless.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 5:55 am
by Throttle
Droll wrote: For those of us who are definitely masters of code, what's wrong with dex?
On Atonement and Parallel, the thing that was wrong with dex was the fact that it effectively did almost nothing. It affected some skill caps, but most skills couldn't realistically be raised high enough for this to matter. Weapon- and armorcrafting caps were heavily influenced by dex, but there were no crafts beyond ordinary so it didn't matter if you capped at talented. It also had very little direct influence on combat and basically did nothing worthwhile.

It seems to affect a lot more skill caps here, and may have been given other roles in combat and archery that it didn't previously have -- can't say for sure, though. It affects starting skills now and damn near every skill seems to be partially dex-based. I do know that people who went with high dex seemed to start with familiar deflect while those with low dex started with novice, which was so crippling a disadvantage that the minimum level had to be raised to amateur.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:11 am
by LuckyV
It really bothers me how important it has become to know the code to play on par with others. I avoid crafting entirely as well because of that. And combat gas become irksome because I don't know what others know who played arpi. For example the efficient ways to raise skills.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:20 am
by Letters
LuckyV wrote:It really bothers me how important it has become to know the code to play on par with others. I avoid crafting entirely as well because of that. And combat gas become irksome because I don't know what others know who played arpi. For example the efficient ways to raise skills.
If it's any consolation, Nimrod has changed up how skills work, and dexterity is no longer the go-to dump stat. Maybe.

Raising skills? Go fight stuff every now and then.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:32 am
by Throttle
It's not that important to know the code, it just gives a bit of an edge once you figure things out. It has always been that way, but attitudes towards code discussion have become much more lax so it's not some well-kept secret anymore.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:38 am
by BoogtehWoog
Throttle wrote:It's not that important to know the code, it just gives a bit of an edge once you figure things out. It has always been that way, but attitudes towards code discussion have become much more lax so it's not some well-kept secret anymore.
And this new system for assigning importance to stats is such a boon in making a character. I had numerous character in the past whose stats completely fell out of line with what I intended them to be and that's really sapping mentally. It would really get a person down when their character's stats were at complete odds with the concept.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Tue Jun 17, 2014 2:11 pm
by Nimrod
LuckyV wrote:It really bothers me how important it has become to know the code to play on par with others. I avoid crafting entirely as well because of that. And combat gas become irksome because I don't know what others know who played arpi. For example the efficient ways to raise skills.
I'm extremely concerned by this as well, LuckyV. I will say however that you do not need to track these things to enjoy the roleplay and coded actions within the game. Some folks really like to try to figure out the min/max of the game and ramp up as quickly as possible for some reason.

Regular play and regular practice in the skill you wish to raise, or craft you wish to branch will boost you to where you want to be eventually. You don't need to know the details if you don't want to.

There have always been min/maxers and there always will be. The new system makes it much more difficult to reach that perfect balance of skills that the min/maxer is looking for, while making it easier for the normal player to get good stats.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Tue Jun 17, 2014 2:43 pm
by BoogtehWoog
Nimrod wrote: There have always been min/maxers and there always will be. The new system makes it much more difficult to reach that perfect balance of skills that the min/maxer is looking for, while making it easier for the normal player to get good stats.
Compared to before, we are in a hell of a lot better place. It was a quagmire on old SOI. I don't think you should really feel all that concerned with the new system. It is much more open and controllable now.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:23 am
by Malik
Does this work by layering stats from poor upwards? What I mean is, if I chose:

Con: 10-25%
Agi: 9-22.5%
Dex: 9-22.5%
Str: 4-10%
Int: 4-10%
Wil: 4-10%

That my CON would go from POOR (0%) to good
, as would AGI and Dex? (Two tiers added on from 20% of the pool) I think a post explaining this would really help people understand it a little bit more and help them really get the most out of their characters.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 8:31 am
by WorkerDrone
There's a base pool that your stats start at before other rolls are made (which are calculated to be higher or lower depending on the number from 1-10 you set them at, which increases their overall percentage) which lends stability to all your stats across a board. A stat could start out at a (possibly bugged) roll of 10, and then layer a percentage roll of 7 over it, and then add size modifiers and racial bonuses for the end result of 19 or so on and so forth.

It could also negatively effect your final roll in the same way. This was ONE form of the way stats worked, but it's been changed around so much and still has many kinks to it that haven't been worked out yet that I couldn't give you a definite answer.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Fri Aug 08, 2014 12:04 pm
by Arcadian
I've gone through character generation, twice, now and would like to chip in by somewhat bringing back this thread a month later. In fairness to myself, and not the thread, I wasn't around to chip in earlier.

In two generations of characters, I've had two results that were not matching the priority of the stats I put into the process. I may be alone in this, but, I believe having a picture of your pc when you make them, then coming out with a result that is different is discouraging.

I would note that the priority system itself is a strong and useful concept. However, I would suggest that when applying the factors of randomness and size modifications, that it scales to always keep that ordering in mind.

For example, lets look at a priority that's, arbitrarily:

str dex agi con will int presence

If the game finds itself in a situation where, due to say, the character selecting a medium stature, the end result has his dex 3 points higher than his str, it always shifts whatever randomness factors were assigned to re balance the result to at least equal in favor of the higher priority stat, lopsided pools resulting in a larger amount for the favored one.

In this case, 2 points are shifted from dex to str.

While I admit this is fairly technical, I also believe we are well past the point in game design, and more importantly, player expectations that rolling some dice should cosign the fate of our character's base prowess.

While say, Gygax's model in D and D gave a huge rush and sense of gain to players who managed to roll a set of beastly stats, the cost and disappointment of players who ended up rolling the toilet likely overshadows this. If you come to the table wanting to play a buff barbarian and only end up with an 8 constitution, you have to shelf all your expectations and desires in playing a game, due to things out of your control.

MUDs, for a while, have been evolving away from that random model. GS, for a while, let the RNG give you stats in a specified breadth of pseudo random numbers, but unlimited re rolls in order to let you fit where you wanted. Still flawed, but you could get what you wanted in a time sink.

Newer games simply give you a pool to distribute from, letting you mold what you desire. This however, comes at the cost of basically, no variance and a homogenous template of characters.

I did not slip into this thread to go on about that, however. For here, I just offer this bit of feedback and suggestion: tweak the system to keep the vision of the player's character in tact and I think it will be an improvement. Finally, I hope this is taken in context: constructive criticism.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 1:10 pm
by krelm
After making a post elsewhere, I'm gonna post a breakdown on how to get this thing to work properly for you.

Say you're rolling a tank, and you want high str and high con, and don't particularly care about the rest of your stats.

Step 1: Put your build as large as it will go, both height and weight.

Step 2: Attribute importance (note, 10 is most important, 0 is least)

Put your stats like this:

Str 10
Con 10
Wil 5
Dex 5
Agi 5
Int 5
Pre 0

This will basically guarantee that you get peak str and con, mid-level int and wil, not-that-great agi and dex, and as little pre as possible.

Now, say you want a high-str high-agi build, with enough con so that you don't get knock out of a fight for two days from one severe.

Step 1, set your build as average height and average weight.

Step 2, set attributes thusly:

Str 10
Agi 10
Con 7
Dex 5
Wil 5
Int 5
Pre 0

Theoretically, barring randomness, that order -should- yield great agi and str and have your con somewhere around good, while everything else will be average and pre (which you can't see anyway) will be poor.

To sum this up, you pretty much want whatever stat/s you want highest first, while having everything else no less than 3 steps under that stat. If you put it like...

Str 10
Con 9
Dex 8
Agi 7
Wil 6
Int 5
Pre 4

Then you'll get all goods, and the stats you put lower will end up higher than the stats you put higher.


Some notes:

* I've noticed a trend for dex and wil to roll higher, for whatever reason, even outside of what build you put your body at. Presumably, you could put these even lower than my examples, and have them come out pretty high.

* PRESENSE IS WORTHLESS. It it totally, absolutely, incredibly, utterly, unforgivably worthless, and you can tell everyone I said that, because it's true. It has nothing to do with anything, and should always be put at 0, unless you're just super psyched about having a really high stat that you can't even see on your score card that does literally nothing.

I hope this has been helpful.

Re: Selecting Attribute Importance

Posted: Sat Sep 06, 2014 1:12 pm
by tehkory
krelm wrote: * I've noticed a trend for dex and wil to roll higher, for whatever reason, even outside of what build you put your body at. Presumably, you could put these even lower than my examples, and have them come out pretty high.
Staff have said (I believe)orcs get a boost to dex, and (I'm sure)humans to wil, racially. I just can't remember where, but I know Icarus confirmed the second one.