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Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

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Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Feawen » Fri Dec 20, 2013 12:18 pm

This was brought up to me as an expectation. I think that it needs more than my input. I'm not presently willing to research the lore and pick it apart, as I just returned from overseas and want time off before I return to classes.

So, I present to you the information I'd laid out, rather quickly.

Pros:

It will add a dynamic to orkish culture, and probably let players pair off into a rather dynamic set of opponents. Not only is the orc on the back of the warg an enemy, but you also need to account for (some of) the mount.

Likely there wouldn't be many warg players that are out to collect everything, as for the most part things wouldn't fit/work with wargs. If they were added, this should probably be an RPP race. I could see a warg hoarding things, but mostly it would probably be trinkets and such. Other than mount armor, there wouldn't be much they could use.

So I don't see how (necessarily) the implimentation would be difficult - just set a new race, give it a quadrupedal build if possible. Let the players mostly fill in the documentation, but it's likely that wargs would work with/as part of orkish society. It wouldn't be like Black Numenoreans and Orcs in one place, for instance.

Cons:

About the same as any race. The question is if you trust people to play them/want people to play them.

Other Thoughts:

Limit languages that wargs can to speak Orkish, Morbeth (Black-Speech), and a Warg language. Allow all other languages to be learned and understood, but not spoken. The wargs should be able to communicate with orcs and each other, but no others (unless they are extremely high-powered and fell indeed).

There should probably be warg NPCs that aren't sapient. Player wargs would need to fall into an area of wargs that are big enough and fell enough to be intelligent.

Quadrupedal build (as above), with mount armor. I'm unsure what things that the quadruped-coded NPCs/PCs can wear, honestly. Though in some cases this might just need to be a case of letting the players succeed or fail on their own if they're wearing something they shouldn't.



But yeah, any other thoughts on this/input from someone who wants to dig through information?
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Throttle » Fri Dec 20, 2013 1:38 pm

I'm not really convinced that wargs are sapient enough to make meaningful PCs, and in any case they're just a bit too unusual. They'd be ruled out of so many aspects of gameplay that I just don't see the value in having it as a race. They can't craft, can't use normal equipment, their culture would be 100% fan fiction, and it would be kind of weird for one PC to be riding another. Just doesn't really seem warranted, especially given the likelihood that an Orkish sphere will have a job to get enough actual orcs to stay above critical mass.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Feawen » Fri Dec 20, 2013 1:45 pm

All good points. Somewhat reminded of the thrush from The Hobbit book.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Emilio » Fri Dec 20, 2013 1:58 pm

Made me wish to roleplay a dog... I could roleplay it, but, everyone else would simply ignore me and I'll end up roaming the streets begging for food.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Throttle » Fri Dec 20, 2013 2:04 pm

I once submitted an app for a dog back in Minas-Tirith. Kite took it as a joke :(
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Emilio » Fri Dec 20, 2013 2:23 pm

Kite should've approved it just to see what happens.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Nimrod » Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:41 pm

FYI - We are seriously considering wargs as a playable race. Unfortunately the staffer who was championing the issue has gone AWOL and there's no one to take up the torch.

We have some wonderful lore associated with the idea and have discussed at length how things would be done.

We've not made a final decision on whether they will be a playable race yet, we'll let you know.

No other official information is available on this issue at this time. Please feel free to discuss as you see fit. We'll be watching.

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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Icristhus » Fri Dec 20, 2013 8:10 pm

Personally, I suspect that while Warg PCs could add quite a bit of flavor and dynamic to certain, limited parts of the game...

I would expect to just see a lot of very poorly played Dogs, rather than wargs getting represented. And that would be extremely disappointing in so very many ways.

I imagine it as something like this:

One of (but not THE) worst cases wrote:A particularly ugly, floppy-eared snaga says, "Here boy! Fetch the pinky!"

A barrel-chested, yellow-furred warg wags his tail at a particularly ugly, floppy-eared snaga.

A barrel-chested, yellow-furred warg leaps up and charges at a wimpy human farmer's corpse.

A barrel-chested, yellow-furred warg lopes back to a particularly ugly, floppy-eared snaga and drops the corpse of a wimpy human farmer at his feet.

A barrel-chested, yellow-furred warg asks a particularly ugly, floppy-eared snaga, "BACON! BACON BACON BACON! GIVE ME BACON NOW!?"


Even if the above doesn't ever occur, can we say it wouldn't be ludicrous in a similar sense?



P.S. For the record, I would love to see a really well-played, scary, vicious, monstrous old warg alpha leading a pack of wargs and snaga in a raid.

Playable wargs -do- have a lot of potential... For both very awesome scenes if all goes really well..

Or, if all goes normally for a mud, a lot of cuddly doggies that burn out and quit in a week because they want to get to craft, open doors, wield battle-axes, and have mudsex (I'm hoping that would be something we discourage wargs from participating in, if only to keep Tolkein Enterprises off our backs).
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Eugene » Fri Dec 20, 2013 9:12 pm

Wargs were clearly not sapient, conscious creatures. That being said, it would certainly be a contribution for a trusted player to assume the role - and there are many factors which come into play. Many people would respond to a PC warg the same way they would an NPC warg on principle. As someone who has played a couple military characters, I can tell you that the general reaction is "KILL IT," unless it is made very clear that it is an RPT (which ruins the novelty and makes people assume something) or a particular character has been contacted to cooperate with the admins (which is not successful by any means, and very clearly highlights that player's relationship with the administration and totally changes the nature of their relationship with other players). In short, it would cause complications. I think it very likely that a very experienced and gifted player could play a warg, and make it extraordinary, but the cons raise significant gameplay issues for players and admins alike.

For our little community, I think it would be good - since we could all come to the consensus not to give knee-jerk reactions. However, if we get a new player that responds as any rational person would, they would end up being shamed for not immediately accessing the forums and being in the know.

TLDR; I do not support the idea due to the problems it would ultimately cause in a long-term, large-scale application.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby tehkory » Sat Dec 21, 2013 12:05 am

Eugene wrote:Wargs were clearly not sapient, conscious creatures.

Tolkien's wargs were explicitly described as having their own language which Gandalf understood, though he likely couldn't speak it.

Also, all of your instakill wargfeelings can be applied to orcish PCs.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Drew7uk » Sat Dec 21, 2013 2:10 am

I believe wargs could work with a. the right game numbers b. the right standalone sphere and c. the right long-term goals/strategy for progression but I'm not sure they're the right race for playable PCs.

Without injecting the race properly I think it could go terribly wrong. Most of the others chiming in have already weighed in here, but:

1. I don't believe the depth is truly there for an effective playable race - why not focus on other deeper, more fleshed out races?

2. I see wargs as potentially being polarized by either very hard for others to interact with, or overly easy, poorly executed and a little weird

3. What would wargs do? Do they strongly affect the way in which they work with Orcs - would they play the same sphere? Would they roam the wild as their own sphere? In either case, you're refining an already small sphere even more so

With the right game numbers and the right people playing wargs I think they have potential, but in opening, or maybe a year down the line, I don't believe so.
Last edited by Drew7uk on Sat Dec 21, 2013 6:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Throttle » Sat Dec 21, 2013 2:18 am

tehkory wrote:
Eugene wrote:Wargs were clearly not sapient, conscious creatures.

Tolkien's wargs were explicitly described as having their own language which Gandalf understood, though he likely couldn't speak it.


Gandalf also talks to birds and moths.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Feawen » Sat Dec 21, 2013 9:30 am

Don't believe Gandalf ever spoke to moths outside of the movies, did he?

But that was what made me think of the thrush. I wouldn't really go in for playable songbirds (as much as I like birds); because it doesn't make sense.

In favor of wargs being sapient, I'll point out the scene in the actual Hobbit book where they treed the dwarves and Bilbo. Those wargs spoke to each other, and the orcs I believe (it's been a while). There's also the matter of foul wolf creatures (wargs) either bred or infused with the power of a Maia, such as Draugluin and Carcharoth. Maia ancestry would make sense, even though wargs aren't werewolves, in some of the race.

Though I wouldn't mind seeing a system in which a player could, for a time, take on what would usually be an NPC and give it more life. As long as they were alright with giving it up towards the end of the plot (or having it die).
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Throttle » Sat Dec 21, 2013 9:52 am

I remember on Arm if you owned a slave NPC you were allowed to basically play it when in the room, using 'command'. That would be cool with wargs, but as entire autonomous PCs I think they're just too alien and unable to add enough to the game.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Hawkwind » Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:29 am

Throttle wrote:I remember on Arm if you owned a slave NPC you were allowed to basically play it when in the room, using 'command'. That would be cool with wargs, but as entire autonomous PCs I think they're just too alien and unable to add enough to the game.


I would agree with Throttle, there is just too little depth to them. The only thing that would separate which warg was which would be success since at the root of it they would nearly all be plotting, merciless, violent killers unconcerned with shinies, politics and material gain.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Drew7uk » Sun Dec 22, 2013 5:56 am

Given some of the previous posts I think it would be more rewarding to see some key warg roles played by an RPA through the course of an overarching storyline. Depending how it develops, maybe 2-3 other PC roles could be introduced to the Orkish sphere.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Octavius » Sun Dec 22, 2013 6:23 am

Hawkwind wrote:I would agree with Throttle, there is just too little depth to them. The only thing that would separate which warg was which would be success since at the root of it they would nearly all be plotting, merciless, violent killers unconcerned with shinies, politics and material gain.


Lets explore this assumption.

What roles ARE possible for a Warg? Much of it does come down to being a heavy RP role, and player portrayal as stated above, rather than skills. So what functions would they serve? Hunter/scout, war leader, pup-rearer (husbandry to allow the NPC mounts), pack alpha, pack omega? Could they have a healer? A howler-of-memories with the music skill? What else can you come up withn orc or warg society?

What warg-specific craftsets would be needed or desired? They wouldn't necessarily use common crafts with the opposable-thumb crowd, but what would they do? How would having scent, rather than sight, be your primary sense change your view of such things?
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Throttle » Sun Dec 22, 2013 6:46 am

The first question I tend to ask when it comes to a new race is whether or not there's enough literature to lend it any kind of authenticity. I was against the Haradrim race for that reason: Tolkien wrote like five sentences about them, so it was almost entirely fan fiction and thus felt wildly out of place and never truly caught on. Their sphere was dead on arrival. I can't remember a single noteworthy thing that came of the existence of the haradrim race.

Mixed with orcs, wargs would have slightly more purpose than haradrim due to sharing the sphere and serving as mounts. Still, I think it's too little of a foundation for a race. It's especially troublesome that they're not even humanoids, because how can you really roleplay body language and facial expressions? Who decides how wargs speak and what makes sense for talking wolves to do in their spare time? How do they deal with all the little MUD things like drinking containers and social commands and so on?

They'll be so far removed from general gameplay. They can't craft, can't really wear equipment (please no suits of warg armor), probably can't open doors or climb ladders or anything. How will it work when one PC is riding another, who decides what actions to take? You'd have to do so much to account for the existence of warg PCs, and for what gain? It seems like a gimmick that will take too much extra work and consideration to accomodate, and has immense potential to just be jarring and stupid. Keep them NPCs and allow a warg's owner considerable freedom to command it while in the same room.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby toofast » Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:42 am

Man, I really hope wargs don't become a playable race. Heh. :?
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Tepes » Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:45 am

Wargs would be a primarily RP race. Long as it doesn't go the way of the furry, I am fine with it.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Drew7uk » Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:47 am

Octavius wrote:Lets explore this assumption.

What roles ARE possible for a Warg? Much of it does come down to being a heavy RP role, and player portrayal as stated above, rather than skills. So what functions would they serve? Hunter/scout, war leader, pup-rearer (husbandry to allow the NPC mounts), pack alpha, pack omega? Could they have a healer? A howler-of-memories with the music skill? What else can you come up withn orc or warg society?

What warg-specific craftsets would be needed or desired? They wouldn't necessarily use common crafts with the opposable-thumb crowd, but what would they do? How would having scent, rather than sight, be your primary sense change your view of such things?


After reading this my initial feeling was that while absolutely great questions with potentially great answers and depth, it feels to me that we should spend the same energy doing the same for other more "viable" races or roles with less restrictions - Elves, Dwarves, Humans.

In short, I think there have been great ideas here but in terms of the resources we have staff and player wise, we'd be better of channeling our energy to other races or areas of the game with greater depth/history/lore.

Not to be negative about the whole idea, just my two cents!
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Octavius » Sun Dec 22, 2013 12:43 pm

Drew7uk wrote:After reading this my initial feeling was that while absolutely great questions with potentially great answers and depth, it feels to me that we should spend the same energy doing the same for other more "viable" races or roles with less restrictions - Elves, Dwarves, Humans.


I fully support similar threads for dwarves and elves. :D (I'd say we already have the threads going for Orcs and Humans.)
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Yoink » Mon Dec 23, 2013 7:34 pm

I actually really like this idea, and the ideas that have been thrown around, but I must reluctantly agree that including it in Alpha would most likely end badly.

For starters, we've no way of knowing what size the playerbase will be to start with. I'm hoping/pretty sure we'll have a flood of people rushing back, but as for where those players will land across the two planned spheres, that's all up in the air.

The energy that could be used making PC wargs a thing could doubtless be better used elsewhere- f'rinstance, fleshing out the orcs themselves, and making conflict interesting and enjoyable for both spheres.

My other concern is that PC wargs, when acting as mounts for orcish PCs, could actually be rather OP. Imagine a massive, vicious warg, fangs slavering and fur matted with blood, and atop that warg an orc armed with, say, a long spear or a shortbow. Both of these creatures are determined to win the battle and are working together as a team.

Basically, you end up with two PCs training, sparring, improving their skills and then going into battle as the one fighting machine. The orcish rider no longer has to worry about moving, charging, giving chase and disengaging- he has a player-controlled mount that is fully capable of making those decisions and keeping him alive as best it's able, whilst still packing a mean punch.

As much as I think the relationship between warg and rider would be fascinating to play- and perhaps add a whole new facet to orcish roleplay, which some folks deride as "without depth"- it would be somewhat unfair on human players who get stuck with boring old warhorses on the mount code.
Warhorses IRL would be well-trained and capable themselves, but we aren't about to open up a playable Horse race. :P

Maybe hang on to this fascinating idea for a later date, once we have a stable base of players on both sides of the conflict.
I agree that they would be an RPP race, perhaps even with a similiar cost to the old Mordor orcs or Uruk Hai.
That might be a bit extreme, but it would probably be best to keep them scarce.

In the meantime, orc players can always stretch to play the role of their adorable fluffy widdle doggies... I mean, hulking, vicious, bloodthirsty mounts.

Oh gods I want to play a warg now arggggh.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Tepes » Tue Dec 24, 2013 11:14 am

I don't think all Wargs were mounts. I am sure there were some terribly scary ones who refused.
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Re: Playable Wargs - Opinions/Thoughts

Postby Octavius » Tue Dec 24, 2013 11:17 am

If I played a warg, I would not debase myself to be ridden. 8-)
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