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Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: Horrorscope] #570806
05/10/15 02:00 AM
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It may have been done so little that anything is progress, BUT you are ignoring the fact that the NWN and NWN2 DM modes were really really good so they are very valuable examples of what you might want to achieve.

Also, the gentleman up earlier in the comments talking about NWN2's persistent worlds is ignoring something, NWN2's big persistent worlds existed INSPITE of the tool set in the game. The tool set wasn't made for such a thing and was eventually modded to all hell till it supported the big 50+ player persistent worlds. It's actually a marvel to be honest, a true testament to the will of a modding community and I believe that with the same amount of love DivOS2 could feasibly do the same even if Larian doesn't implement it themselves, as long as the base DM mode is powerful enough to spark the desire and frankly something shit like Sword Coast Legends won't spark the desire.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #570808
05/10/15 04:29 AM
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A turn-based game just doesn't do very well with more than 10 players, and even more than five can be slow unless everyone is coordinated, or at least there's some way to limit turn length or skip player turns. Or, the players are in different combat sessions but still working together (or competing, I suppose), but that's hard to pull off.

Is there a video of some really awesome GMing in NWN or NWN2? I looked before, but I couldn't find anything that actually seemed interesting. Probably weren't too many screencasts being made in NWN's heydey, but I could be wrong.

Originally Posted By: HolmstN
Just took a look at the Editor/GM mode stream (took me long enough). Absolutely LOVE the idea of modder-created templates for GM functionality. Think that's a really wise way to go that adds tons of flexibility, but also allows a GM's life to be easy (or hard).

The only consideration in this is how an END-USER will grab these mods. This might be something we, as a community, have to develop. We need a robust website/game UI that automagically downloads all necessary mods. BUT, this also shouldn't bloat a player's game, which means some templates should be shared and not re-downloaded. It will be very difficult for anyone to create a functional pre-programmed system for this. Instead, we should focus on putting together 'community packs' of useful functionality that can be easily shared as a single download. Enhancing UX. Maybe Larian could curate the most popular mods and put them into endorsed/approved packs. A great mod community will only form if we have great user experience. Part of the responsibility rests on Larian to develop great systems. But part of that responsibility also falls on us, as a community, to develop great culture.


I don't see how Nexus/Steam Workshop won't fulfill this role as a supplier of various GM functions. Unless you're wondering if, say, a GM downloads a template for a certain function, then do the players also have to download it? Ideally, the players won't also need to download the template, since everyone is basically connected to the editor anyway, and most templates will probably merely be shortcuts to activate certain scripts that use all the base code.

If the players do need to download the templates, then it would be imperative that the player auto-downloads the templates upon joining a GM's game where there are custom templates. Every time you require several players to do something outside of the game, you drastically reduce the number of people who will partake in the game. They also should do this for regular mods, so if a player downloads a mod for the main campaign and hosts a game, then when another player joins, they can choose to auto-download the mods they are using (at the very least, for steam workshop mods, but preferably for mods from other places too. Basically, the other players should be able to download the mods from the host, so it shouldn't matter where they're from).

As far as bloat, I imagine most templates will be mere kilobytes if they're basically just text files that contain the scripts and the template code. Only templates that include custom content will be big.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #570817
05/10/15 06:54 AM
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The way I see the only way GM mode ever becoming popular is it has to be simple and intuitive. While being flexible when necessary.

I imagine DM mode divided into two separate operating modes.

Preparation Mode:
Live Mode:

The Preparation mode is essentially a simplified version of the editor. It lets you build the map, create factions, and faction associations ( which groups are allies, which groups are enemies, etc ) It also lets you create two types of units. Profile based units, which creates units randomly based on a set of parameters. Unique units which look exactly as set by the creator.

The 2nd part of preparation mode are premade scripts. Something like a merchant script - soldier script, archer script etc. Essentially Ai packages which can either be from Larian or custom made. So when you place a unit in live mode, you can just assign the package to the unit and they will act accordingly based on that package.

Finally when you finish "preparing" you save it as a package file and the package file is loaded when you host and gets "distributed" to the clients. This package contains the map \ unique scripts \ and other custom assets.

When the game is in motion you have "Live Mode"
Live mode would essentially be like a control station of sorts.

Lighting \ Weather Button - This changes the light to dark \ dusk \ noon \ night. Which lets you set the mood for the area.

An object button - which lets you drop objects. Clicking on the object lets you move it around and rotate it. Right clicking on the object lets you set the object as a container \ trap \ etc. Lets you set the weight of the object as well as health and description.

Then an NPC button which lets you choose from the prefabricated characters you made in preperation mode, either a unique character or profile based character.

Finally by clicking on the character you can order it to do things such as; sit, move, run, interact with "x" object. Or if you have a custom script, it will run that.

Also there are 2 types of dialogs.
1. Pre fabricated dialogs created in preperation mode. For example gate gaurd etc.

2. Live Dialogs which opens a some what of a chat window with the avatar [ 3d ] of the character appearing next to each statement the character makes. Where the DM can also activate a manual Dice Roll or rock paper scissors match with player.

==
I think by keeping Live mode simple - it will allow much flexibility for more users. While making sure the DM's are constantly being engaged. Especially since you forcibly split preparation mode to an offline event where the DM has to first prepare everything in advance, instead of forcing players to wait for the DM to set the stage.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571008
06/10/15 12:07 AM
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Octu Offline
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I think, it will be interesting to make GM mode as a kind of game in the game.

E.G., Game Master have some GM points. He spend this points to change envirnment, quest, monsters etc. Different changes cost different amount of points. And he earn this points for differen activities.
Further in text GMP = Game Master's Points

E.g., some rules:

Common
Click to reveal..
- GM has skill tree, which contains some upgrade for his abilities and new features (type of creatures, scripts etc).
- GM gain xp equal to xp gained by player in his quests. GM gain one fourth of xp gained by player out of his quests.
- XP allows to use new features, scripts, monsters. But to use them, GM actually spend GMP.
- There is some boundary amount of GMP. If GMP decrease below this boundary, it will regenerate in moderate temp.
- Every 30 minute, players can judge GM's actions (voting). Thus GM get rating, e.g., from 1.0 to 5.0. If GM get rating higher than 3.0 he gains some bonus GMP. Vice versa for rating lower than 3.0 he suffer from GMP penalty
- If GM get 1.0-2.0 rating three times in a row he will be kicked from game session (or make voting).
- Any time players can vote for GM be kicked from game session.
- I think, it will be interesting to make some type of GM global score with high score list. After every game session with random players, GM will earn some global points. GMs steady loose some global points every day. The higher score the more points they loose, thus they must play in regular manner to achieve the top of high score list. But anyone can easily have some moderate score without daily games. It will show that they have DM expirience. GM can also get some score points for playing with friends (very low points).
- The higher GM global rank, the more features he can use from the start of new game.


For battles
Click to reveal..
- GM can take over control any one npc in any encounter for free. Players see that. Some GM skills can improve npc in battle (e.g., more health or improved level of ability).
- GM can spend some GMP to take over control every npc in battle. This ability has cooldown and cost moderate amount of GMP. Some skills can reduce cooldown time and cost.
- If GM behave active in such battle, He get xp up to 100% of xp gained by player for killing monsters controlled.
- If GM behave passive in such battles (do no damage for players or use no skills), he get low xp (up to 0), and can suffer from GMP penalty.
- If GM win battle, he gain some additional GMP (but no xp). Thus GM has profit to fight strong: xp for loosing, GMP for winning.


For quests
Click to reveal..
- There are some types of quests activities, e.g., random encounter, ambush, riddle, time rush, side quest, etc.
- Different activities has different cooldowns. It brings more variety.
- Activity cost depend on number of elements used to make it.
- GM can't set amount of xp, players gain for his tasks.
- GM and players gain equal amount of xp during the quest.
- GM can delete quest/objects and refund half of spent GMP.
- GM gain GMP for players get xp in his quest. GMP amount depends on quest variety. E.g., let there are only three sources of xp in certain quest: x1 - expirience gained for battles, x2 - expirience gained for finding certain item, x3 - some another sort of expirience, a1, a2, a3 - some sort of coefficients which depend on type of xp source and player's levels. Let GMP = x1*(1 - a1*x1^2)*x2*(1 - a2*x2^2)*x3*(1-a3*x3^2). Thus, if GM want to make big quest, He should make it with different types of tasks (kill, bring, steal, interrogate, etc). And one complex quest allows to gain far more GMP than several small ones. GMP amount will calculate during quest walkthrough, Thus the more far player advance, the more GMP will be received.


GM's hideout
Click to reveal..
- GM has its own training area, to try out different quest for free. He can save assets and then transfer them on common map. Area's size depend's on GM's level.
- GM can invite players to his hideout. They can do anything they want (GM is some sort of God here), but they won't get any xp, gold, gear etc. What happens here, stays here =)
Player can go back any time.
- GM can once per day teleport players (or some of them) to his hideout to play his own quests. Due to, GM has no cost for placing assets here, He can prepare bloody dungeon with blackjack and hookers several crazy poet mages. GM can't change anything while players in his hideout, but they both get xp for quests. GM can place gears, treasures, but players won't be available to get it outside the hideout. But players will get some rewards for quests completing (random generated without DM) and will save it outside.
- Players can leave GM's hideout after 5-15 minutes after arriving (depends on GM level). Players can leave it after die. DM can teleport players back. And always players can vote for kicking DM.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571015
06/10/15 01:44 AM
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LordCrash Offline

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@Octu

I like your ideas although I have to say that this sounds like a game in itself aka way too complicated and work-intensive for DOS 2...


WOOS
Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571017
06/10/15 01:51 AM
06/10/15 01:51 AM
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^I think watching what Sword Coast does with it's GM, we can see if that is a good way to go or not. But no bad ideas at all. I think if you have more drop in - drop out mp, you need rules for the GM so they can't grief a game. Amongst a tight group of friends, I think GM's stay within their own groups understandings. So perhaps a toggle of rules/no rules GM'ing.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571028
06/10/15 04:21 AM
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Does drop-in-drop-out work at ALL with a GM mode, though?

I don't think that it does - especially not for the GM position. So the GM would have to be the host, and if the GM gets disconnected, that's a disconnect for everyone. I can't see different random players dropping into the middle of a GM session being great either, they'll start out confused.

In a Pen and Paper game, wouldn't it be pretty much unheard of twenty sessions in for Bob to leave, and then Clive joins the group and then starts playing Bob's character?

Last edited by Stabbey; 06/10/15 04:28 AM.
Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: LordCrash] #571050
06/10/15 09:35 AM
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Octu Offline
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Originally Posted By: LordCrash
@Octu

I like your ideas although I have to say that this sounds like a game in itself aka way too complicated and work-intensive for DOS 2...


I agree, it is rather hard and expensive to put this ideas into practice. But it is only the first stage of gathering ideas, brainstorm. It is usually recomended to gather all ideas even absolutely crazy ones. Some of them can lead to real things.

GM mode should to be included in the main module of D:OS 2, or it won't be seen by most of players.
It is obviously, GM can be like God in user's mods. But in the main module he should to have some limist (at least, during the first walkthrough). So I try to construct some examples.
By the way, I think it is not too hard to give expirience to GM and open some editors options during game progress.

But when I dream on GM mode... Oh... Hereafter just a piece of my sweet dreams.

Click to reveal..
Just imagine, GM is a part of game narrative. It can repair the main pretension to GM mode - it has no value for singleplayer.

Imagine, there is some Mighty Thing linked with the player's characters. It grow stronger with players achievements. But it hates them, because its fate depends on such miserable creations...
Oh, stop... I think, I just described The Transcendent One =D

Or may be some great mage soulbounded with players. And he tries get out from Hall of Echoes.
Or it is an abomination which struck Source. The more often player use dark side of Source, the more stronger can Mighty Think interfer in players game.
Or etc...

Ok, let's continue. Let's this Mighty Thing has its own story involved into players ones. If there is no GM in game session, Mighty Thing appears only in story and in random encounter (like it orginise attacks on player). It also can randomly increase strength of some monsters.
If there is GM in game session, he can make the same and more. And he get his own story, which allows to see game narrative with different point of view. E.g., players think Mighty Thing want to kill them, But it just know they'll face with very strong enemy and try to prepare them. What does not kill us makes us stronger.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: Stabbey] #571052
06/10/15 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted By: Stabbey
In a Pen and Paper game, wouldn't it be pretty much unheard of twenty sessions in for Bob to leave, and then Clive joins the group and then starts playing Bob's character?


It's done, if it's just for a vital part of the campaign, and the character is important. However, the normal thing would be to put Bob's character on ice in some way, because Clive would generally want to do his own thing. I've never experienced a new player wanting to "take over" a character from someone else.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571080
06/10/15 01:37 PM
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HolmstN Offline
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I tend to be in agreement with Stabbey. All in all, while a gamey GM mode might be fun, it wouldn't be a creation catered to the people that most want it. SCL made a gamey GM mode and many people were upset; they wanted the power to create imbalanced things. NSpace misread the market. Larian should avoid the same mistake.

That said, I hope we can mod in a mode like you're saying. That extensibility allows for a lot of ingenuity.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571091
06/10/15 01:52 PM
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Well, isn't "misreading" the market what we always want good devs to do? There are way too many market-based games out there and way too less games that are made because the devs want them to function in a certain way because they like it that way. I mean, DOS was pretty much like that as well. It concentrates on co-op MP in the first place, although >80% of the actual customers only play the game in SP. I'd say that pretty much qualifies for the same "misreading of the market" if you put it like that. And they even go deeper into that space for DOS 2. I'm not so sure if it's a "mistake" but that's of course debatable...


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Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571107
06/10/15 02:39 PM
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Here is what i would like to see;

1) The ability to write and place handcrafted notes for players to find - maybe a treasure map - maybe some humor that is specific to the character names -

2) Complete control of the monsters turns by the DM - with the option to click full auto - or auto through a single turn

3) item designer - create custom items to hand place in the game - these would be unique

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: LordCrash] #571135
06/10/15 04:16 PM
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If they miss the market by making the best support for pw and sending nwn to the grave, i'm ok with that.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571141
06/10/15 05:01 PM
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I'm solidly against any artificial limits on the GM in an effort to make it more of a game. The biggest draw of a GM mode should be the greatest amount of freedom possible. At most, they should make it possible for modders to add that, but they shouldn't spend any effort themselves on trying to balance a game mode like that.

Here are the templates/tools I'd like to see, from most basic to the more difficult

Resurrect player/NPC

Teleport player/NPC

Start a timer or turn counter that displays on the screen for the players

Random number generator

GM text that displays in some special box or on the bottom of the screen somewhere, or GM can also talk through an NPC and bypass its stock conversation options. Players would probably have to type or speak their responses instead of selecting from a list, since that'd be impossible to whip up on the fly.

Add a journal entry to all or some players, using either preset journal entries or ones you write on the fly.

Private communication with certain players

Add experience/items

Mark ownership on items and move them around

Add and manipulate triggers

The ability to change the atmosphere, at least to a preset value, but modifying all the values would be awesome.

Ability to see all active timers in the code and pause or start one (probably only timers that are marked as GM-changeable to prevent situations where a GM breaks a quest or system.) Situations where this would be useful is if you had a day night cycle, and you wanted to bypass that to skip ahead to morning from night to indicate the players had slept, for example.

Quest templates for basic kill and fetch quests, though I'm actually skeptical about the importance of the ability to make quests on the fly. After all, a quest in itself doesn't really mean anything, it's just used to symbolize that there's a task. But if you have a GM indicating there's a task, and reward you for completing it, you don't have as much need for the code (though obviously it's nice to automate things if you're trying to do a lot at once, and conversation coding is still important to make NPCs say different things if you've completed a task.)

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: LordCrash] #571164
06/10/15 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted By: LordCrash
Well, isn't "misreading" the market what we always want good devs to do? There are way too many market-based games out there and way too less games that are made because the devs want them to function in a certain way because they like it that way. I mean, DOS was pretty much like that as well. It concentrates on co-op MP in the first place, although >80% of the actual customers only play the game in SP. I'd say that pretty much qualifies for the same "misreading of the market" if you put it like that. And they even go deeper into that space for DOS 2. I'm not so sure if it's a "mistake" but that's of course debatable...


In principle I agree. The 'market' I'm referring to is the target audience. For Larian, this means those attracted to a GM mode... PnP players/DM's, creative modders, Role Players. If they try to cater to the general gaming market, we run into a SCL issue of missing the target audience for the sake of a broader grab.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: Stabbey] #571179
06/10/15 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted By: Stabbey
Does drop-in-drop-out work at ALL with a GM mode, though?

I don't think that it does - especially not for the GM position. So the GM would have to be the host, and if the GM gets disconnected, that's a disconnect for everyone. I can't see different random players dropping into the middle of a GM session being great either, they'll start out confused.

In a Pen and Paper game, wouldn't it be pretty much unheard of twenty sessions in for Bob to leave, and then Clive joins the group and then starts playing Bob's character?


Perhaps I'm not using the best word for this saying Drop in and Drop out, that is a MP style unto itself. But playing MP DM games with strangers. But again that may not be what D:OS2 is about, D:OS surely wasn't. But if we can create our own content perhaps that content is targeted towards more random players coming together.

But if there is Drop In/Out, yes that seems like it would exclude the GM, I would be thinking randoms jumping in and out as PC's only.

Last edited by Horrorscope; 06/10/15 09:25 PM.
Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: HolmstN] #571181
06/10/15 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted By: HolmstN
I tend to be in agreement with Stabbey. All in all, while a gamey GM mode might be fun, it wouldn't be a creation catered to the people that most want it. SCL made a gamey GM mode and many people were upset; they wanted the power to create imbalanced things. NSpace misread the market. Larian should avoid the same mistake.


I don't think we know if NSPace misread the market. Over there like here, there aren't that many unique posters, so we can't say how the masses will take to it. I'm intrigued by the offering and personally I don't get bogged down in how necessarily I want it, but is there take on it fun? I know they took quite a bit of heat (from the small pool of posters), but what 99% of all other CRPG's don't even have any of those features. So I'm half full for sure. If I'm going to knock them, then I want to knock the other 99% for doing even less in this space.

That said, perhaps they have done a poor job in executing their take on GM'ing.

+1 To LordCrash's comments. (Forum needs a like button)

Reading all the suggestions has boiled my minimum down to two things:
1. Able to GM the main game.
2. GM can jump into a baddie(s) and use their human intelligence against the PC's, that right there makes it unique and more challenging the to the PC's and allows the GM to have a fun quick role.

Sure I'll take more, but if I had just that, I'd have a very nice alternate play method.

Last edited by Horrorscope; 06/10/15 09:28 PM.
Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: norD] #571187
07/10/15 12:44 AM
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Raith Offline
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Legends of the Sword coast doesn't have a good DM mode worth emulating. It is a bizarre annoying thing that isn't conducive to a fun PnP style experience.
NWN however does.

A DM mode isn't the place for a bizarre competitive round robin mode, it should be attempting to emulate table top as much as possible, and through that desire the DM should have as much power and ability to change things as possible, the more editor functions they have access to in game (not to mention console commands) the better it will be.

"But Raith, building a big detailed area in game would be time consuming, what about that?"
That's why you should be prepared and have the major areas built if not populated in the editor before even loading it up for your group little one. Simple, no?

"But a DM should have a skill tree and gain levels and stuff to get more crap to do in the game!"
Why? The DM isn't in competition with the players, he is facilitating their story and game, now if this story kills them oh well but that isn't a success for the DM, it is simply the way it played out.

But if the DM can do anything from the start, what's to stop him from winning?
...The DM isn't in competition with the players, and if you have a DM (or you are that DM) that think that killing the party is "winning" then you shouldn't play with him/shouldn't be DM.

"DMs should be able to control the monsters directly to fight the party!"
I'm not against this, but it shouldn't be mandatory because personally I would be using that time gained in battle setting up the next area if it needed it.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: Raith] #571190
07/10/15 02:47 AM
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Raith is pretty on the ball. The key to a REAL GM mode is that you are trying to creative an active story you can change and alter on the fly in order to ENTERTAIN the players.

You aren't trying to beat them, that isn't a GM mode. Sword Coast Legends doesn't really have a GM mode, just what they pass off as one.

---

As for "Too highly detailed" why not allow simpler snap in tiles with clear entrances and exits for on the fly and easy construction?

You can have your extremely high detailed large (or small) areas. But we could also have more of a simpler almost lego approach as well.

So you could load up a field, plop down a house... Poof! you could create a dungeon room by room "poof poof poof".

Sure you definitely would get large black spaces if you go for that. Yet the advantage of it is that a GM who uses them can more easily change and modify the layout of the world they build.

Re: - D:OS2 GM Mode - Ideas! [Re: Neonivek] #571200
07/10/15 07:08 AM
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Joined: Aug 2013
Posts: 53
Exactly. Legends of the Sword Coast doesn't have a DM mode just like it isn't a D&D game. It is a lie meant to trick people into buying a game that they might not normally purchase, a lie that I nearly fell for might I add. Thank you people that streamed that horrid game.

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