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  #46  
Unread 03-09-2014, 12:09 AM
Donners Donners is offline
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I like the sound of this.

I was a bit put off by the idea of only managing three gladiators, but I find that in games like TEW and WMMA your fighters can become a bit generic and disposable. After thinking about it a bit, I realised that having only three will make it a lot easier to get invested in them, and add a lot more tension to each fight.

Best of luck with it.
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  #47  
Unread 03-09-2014, 05:11 AM
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If it was more than three it could become a bit of a pain because only one fighter is fighting each day, so you can easily rotate three if you wanted too, but anymore would give you a scenario where no one was really building a win-loss record.

I'm looking forward to the full release of this, it's on my list of games to get with Banished and the South Park game.
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  #48  
Unread 03-12-2014, 11:44 PM
Derek DiBenedetto Derek DiBenedetto is offline
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RayW: Exactly! One key to the game is managing your small stable and getting the most out of them, and balancing developing your talent with wins and losses (same thought process behind a sports franchise, for instance).

Update: The Alpha is doing well with 7 people reporting in that they really like the game, and just a few minor bugs which have already been fixed. It should be moving to Beta in the next few days or so. Want in?? Shoot me an email: indiegameguy@live.com
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  #49  
Unread 03-13-2014, 10:08 AM
Raven Darkheart Raven Darkheart is offline
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does it have the same display requirements as Arcadia a la the 1200ish display size that i have brought up before? if not then i may want in
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  #50  
Unread 03-13-2014, 02:33 PM
Derek DiBenedetto Derek DiBenedetto is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raven Darkheart View Post
does it have the same display requirements as Arcadia a la the 1200ish display size that i have brought up before? if not then i may want in
Nope, it's 1024x768 res, same as most of Adam's lineup of games.
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  #51  
Unread 03-17-2014, 10:39 AM
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praguepride praguepride is offline
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Looking forward to this game and just mulling some thoughts around in my head as possible suggestions. Don't know how many if any will be possible or fit the theme but just sitting here imagining my perfect game and this is what I came up with:


1) Increasing brutality: Matches become more brutal the higher up you climb. People might not expect a lot of blood on the sand for the scrub matches but a championship fight should end with blood and gore all around

2) The Emperor's Favor: Like in classic Roman style a defeated gladiator might have his life spared or destroyed by the whim of the local ruler. Perhaps have it as either a random factor set on game load, a dynamic factor that changes as the game evolves, something that is configurable in the option screen or one that reacts to the player choices.

I'm thinking three basic traits: Brutal, Merciful, Normal. A brutal emperor would often want death while a merciful one would often spare lives. This could also be used to rate the crowd too, whether they call for blood or are merciful. This could open up a whole new dynamic where you have a forumula where based upon A) A warrior's popularity, B) whether he is a 'face' or a 'heel), C) how bloodthirsty the crowd is they might demand blood (and thus the match is 'better' if it results in blood) or merciful. Then you can factor in a warrior's desire to appeal the crowd (personality trait?) so that even a brutal gladitor might spare a fan favorite or a 'nice' gladiator might go for the kill under pressure of crowd and king.

3) Legacy: Popular gladiators get all the ladies . If a game goes long enough you could transition from your gladiator to his son. Or perhaps you might pick up a lesser ranked gladiator on hopes that his lineage might hint at his potential. I'm thinking that a gladiator could have a "Legacy" stat that would be like a 'luck' factor in their training, stat limits, and popularity. The son of a famous gladiator gets a 'potential' boost to popularity and stats while the son of a no-name farmer gets a 'potential' penalty. I say potential because it is not a guarantee whether it will make a difference at all, say 50/50 split but yet another thing that can bring it to life. Assuming the game can simulate 100's of years in a typical play session you could try to create legacy games where you try to create the most powerful gladiator bloodline. If it's out of scope to train successive generations then just have it be an RNG as another stat, perhaps randomly generate 'parent' gladiator names.


4) Random Global Events: Random events might make the gladiator pool more or less bountiful. Perhaps a war sucks away the good fighters for a season while a war ending might create a flood of experienced fighters.


5) End Game: What happens when you win? This kills simulation games for me because many of them break down once you get to the top of the pyramid. You have enough influence and cash to buy your way to the top every year thereafter. TEW has a difficulty curve so the more popular you are, the harder it is to grow, the harder it is to stay at the top, and it becomes frightfully easy to fall. In this game I think that the higher your fighter(s) climb the more often your opponents might use dirty tricks. In addition because the fights are more brutal (see #1) it becomes very difficult to keep a fighter at the top of the pile for very long and having a two- or three-time champion becomes an amazing achievement in and of itself.


6) Personality Traits: Games where your people are just stat bundles quickly lose interest for me. I like to have a bit more description behind them. Dwarf Fortress, for example, takes a lot of time to generate physical desriptions, personality traits, likes and dislikes even though most of those items have no real impact on gameplay. This was an issue with Arcadia for me because there was nothing to make these fighters 'real' in my imagination.

Having bios like age, height, weight, physical descriptions, personality traits, hair color/eye color might seem pointless if they're all arbitrary but it's those little details that help capture a players imagination and make the fighters 'real'. In addition it opens up expansion opportunities where those traits DO have an impact. Height gives you reach but penalties for wrestling. Weight gives you strength and toughness bonuses but hurts your speed. Hair color and eye color are probably arbitrary but it might be fun to try to create an army of Redheads. Personality traits have tremendous opportunities for game mechanic impacts with things like Stubborn or Cowardly or Fearless or Handsome or Viscious all factoring into mechanics in and out of the ring.

7) Manager as a character - TEW added the user talents and player avatars to help draw the player into the game. I'm thinking of a system kind of like Oregon Trail where you pick your starting occupation from choices like Merchant or Politician etc. that would give you different starting set ups and game experiences. Politicans generate influence more quickly, Merchants generate gold easier, maybe Generals are better at training, Criminal Mastermind gets bonuses to cheating etc.


8) Rival Managers: What is a hero without a villain? Perhaps as part of gameplay you develop a rival 'dojo' or guild if you will. You get bigger bonuses for beating them but those fights will be harder and more brutal then normal and they are far more likely to do underhanded things to you in return. Perhaps if you beat them enough you can crush them and get the thrill and repreive but there is always another rival around the corner...

Compare this to Regional Wars in TEW to give the player some more immediate goals.

9) Goals: Short-term goals to get short-term rewards. "Make 1,000 gold profit to get 1 extra influence point". "Train your gladiator's swordsmanship to get 50 extra gold". Short term goals like you see with Owner Goals in TEW or the generated missions in games like Europa Universalis or Total War helps provide users with a short term goal. Open ended games like these tend to make it easy to lose focus on what you should be doing and you end up just clicking through things without really thinking or caring because you're just trying to kill the time between important event A and important event B. There needs to be things to do to impact gameplay besides the obvious train and fight. Perhaps you can run businesses on the side for more money or you can build up your fighter in a certain way to better appeal to a powerful patron. You don't have to follow your mission (or do you?) but it can help keep the player involved and keep them on track.


10) Awards and Titles: TEW has numerous ways to celebrate success. Hall of Immortals, the top 100 lists, the end of the year awards, the personal achievements and trophies etc. etc. Love 'em or hate 'em personally but achievements like on Xbox and Steam can really help drive a player and give them a sense of accomplishment about what they have done. Even better if these achievements come with bonuses or unlock additional content but even if they're just 'Congrats!" it's nice to think that all the time invested in a game 'means' something after you're done playing.
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  #52  
Unread 03-18-2014, 04:46 AM
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Blackman Blackman is offline
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I hope that stat progression works out well. We didn't get the chance to see how much they would evolve over time.
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  #53  
Unread 03-21-2014, 01:11 PM
Derek DiBenedetto Derek DiBenedetto is offline
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Tuesday, March 21st, 2014 - 99% completed:

The game is now in Beta, and i've even added a few extra features since the game was in Alpha, including feature #9 listed above in praguepride's excellent suggestion list: Short-term goals that give rewards! Called 'Secret Objectives', I've designed it to be randomized every season and game so that its always different, and it really adds more spice to the game.

I've also added the option to advance the Combat text with the SPACE bar, instead of a set amount of seconds, via TEW and other such games.

Once the game clears Beta, it should hopefully be out soon after that. More details to come soon!
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  #54  
Unread 03-24-2014, 09:36 AM
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praguepride praguepride is offline
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Awesome to hear the update, especially advancing text via space bar.

One other idea I had was being able to dump gold to invest in your facility.

Better training facilities gives you a bump on your training rolls to get higher stats. Better recruitment gives bumps to the randomly generated fighters. Status/Title upgrades give you more influence etc. Huge investments in gold result in long term upgrades to your fighter abilities with the idea that a couple good, well-managed seasons (and/or effective gambling) can upgrade you overall to a higher 'tier'. You start out with scrubs but as the game goes on your 'starting fighters' become championship material right out of the gate.

This can be compensated from a difficulty curve by making higher levelopponents even more powerful so again a 1st season champion is unlikely while a 30th season champion is easily within grasp.

tl;dr: Reward the player for long time commitments by allowing them to buy longterm advantages.
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  #55  
Unread 03-24-2014, 01:24 PM
Derek DiBenedetto Derek DiBenedetto is offline
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More great ideas, indeed!

Just a quick update: I decided to add #6 of your list above as well, detailed stats and special traits for each warrior that can influence play in a minor way in some cases, and a spot where you can upload pics for your warriors (portraits so to speak) that appear in the detailed profiles. For example, if you upload a file named pic1.jpg to the game folder, it will load as the first warrior's pic, pic2.jpg for the second, etc. Defaults will be there with the game that you can overwrite.

Certain heights and weights will affect combat in a minor way too. This will make warriors more 3-dimensional and not just "stats".
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  #56  
Unread 03-27-2014, 05:27 PM
Antonin Antonin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayW View Post
If it was more than three it could become a bit of a pain because only one fighter is fighting each day, so you can easily rotate three if you wanted too, but anymore would give you a scenario where no one was really building a win-loss record.
I guess I'm the opposite of most of you gentlemen. I was hoping for a sim/game that aligns itself more with the historical aspects of gladiator life. Oh well.
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  #57  
Unread 03-29-2014, 07:18 AM
mikedanton mikedanton is offline
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My girlfriend wants to know if there are any plans for some female gladiators?
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  #58  
Unread 03-29-2014, 11:14 AM
Derek DiBenedetto Derek DiBenedetto is offline
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mikedanton: Who knows? The game is left a bit ambiguous on gender for the most part, but female gladiators weren't a big part of the historical times really, so not right now. But since I favor fun with this game over pure historical accuracy, I may consider it at some point.
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  #59  
Unread 03-29-2014, 04:47 PM
Antonin Antonin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek DiBenedetto View Post
...But since I favor fun with this game over pure historical accuracy, I may consider it at some point.
There was nothing more dramatic, and potentially fun for the computer gamer, than the real-history world of gladiator combat.

With the emperor Commodus, it became such an obsession that it contributed to the growth of a conspiracy that eventually murdered him.

Well, Commodus had a lot of "issues" that eventually got him killed, but his love of actually fighting as a gladiator was a massive scandal.
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  #60  
Unread 03-30-2014, 11:21 PM
Derek DiBenedetto Derek DiBenedetto is offline
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Yes, Commodus had many rather severe issues that would have made him a target in many eras, including being a huge megalomaniac and control freak.

I tended to favor the game's "fun" and playability vs. historical accuracy, since that sometimes didn't tend to make the game as fun. I did alter the game's naming file to lean towards more Greek and Roman type names, and toned down the "magic" that was in the old version to lean towards secret pacts and the like.
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