Author Topic: My two cents about Permadeath  (Read 92832 times)

LazyCat

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #75 on: April 03, 2014, 11:24:18 PM »
Permadeath is just dogmatic remnant of the past. It's like religion, or smoking. It used to be cool, but today it's just stupid. Never mind I actually do smoke. That is the mystery of human mind. We have absolutely no control, it was all predetermined at the beginning of time. We are under illusion we know what we want, but we are only spectators, justifying in retrospect that which already was. And everybody is save-scumming, anyway.


Jaxian

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #76 on: April 04, 2014, 12:38:57 AM »
I don't think permadeath is appropriate for every game.  To me, it depends on the variety provided in each playthrough.  If starting over means that you are faced with no new choices, no new powers, no new monsters, no new levels, etc, then permadeath probably isn't a good choice for that game.  Redoing everything that you've already done simply isn't fun.

That's why randomness is such a key part of roguelikes.  While the player may be a bit frustrated at dying, there should also be excitement to see what the next run will have in store.  And while randomness necessitates some degree of luck, luck can also contribute to this feeling, this idea that anything can happen, that the same game can surprise you each time you play.

While some may enjoy permadeath for just the added thrill factor from the risk it provides, I don't personally feel that is enough.  I've never understood permadeath in MMO's, where you must spend hours grinding to get back to where you were, nor even in games like Diablo, which has random dungeons, but static gameplay and choices.

So it is usually my goal to make repeated playthroughs as interesting as possible.  For me, that's the draw of a roguelike, this sort of unspoken promise that each time I play will be a brand new experience.

Vanguard

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #77 on: April 04, 2014, 04:15:57 AM »
Permadeath owns and there are tons of great nonrandom permadeath games.

miki151

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #78 on: April 04, 2014, 08:35:08 AM »
I'm sceptical about the value of these opening levels, say the first five or so (or more depending on the game). The most damning thing about them is that they tend to be so unrepresentative of higher level play that they're barely even a learning experience. The question is: What's the right way to cut that part of the game out without trivializing or unduly truncating the early development of the character?
I think Nethack has pretty exciting early game. Most of the classes start very weak, so they have to rely on their pet a lot, which means a lot of running away and dancing with the monsters. There are usually 1-2 powerful items found in the early levels, and they influence your game a lot. You might find some big stores and have fun robbing them. And there is the whole protection racket thing, which essentially means that you get a big bonus if you reach around 7th dungeon level without gaining any exp levels. And Nethack gives you a lot of tools to avoid combat, so it's a lot of fun.

I understand that these things also make the game extremely hard for beginners. But maybe because Nethack does a bad job at showing and explaining all the mechanics to the player.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014, 08:36:58 AM by miki151 »
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awake

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #79 on: April 04, 2014, 02:50:38 PM »
I don't think permadeath is appropriate for every game.  To me, it depends on the variety provided in each playthrough.  If starting over means that you are faced with no new choices, no new powers, no new monsters, no new levels, etc, then permadeath probably isn't a good choice for that game.  Redoing everything that you've already done simply isn't fun.

That's why randomness is such a key part of roguelikes.  While the player may be a bit frustrated at dying, there should also be excitement to see what the next run will have in store.  And while randomness necessitates some degree of luck, luck can also contribute to this feeling, this idea that anything can happen, that the same game can surprise you each time you play.

While some may enjoy permadeath for just the added thrill factor from the risk it provides, I don't personally feel that is enough.  I've never understood permadeath in MMO's, where you must spend hours grinding to get back to where you were, nor even in games like Diablo, which has random dungeons, but static gameplay and choices.

So it is usually my goal to make repeated playthroughs as interesting as possible.  For me, that's the draw of a roguelike, this sort of unspoken promise that each time I play will be a brand new experience.

I agree with this very much. Most of the simple roguelikes I've tried on smartphone feel similar in every playthrough (given the same class choice) and there's not much to figure out (identifying scrolls and whatnot) so permadeath is just a way to repeatedly kick the player in the nuts. It also seems hard to make a roguelike that's simple AND tough AND fair: you get two of those at most.

I think prohibiting save scumming is more important than permadeath. But permadeath is great for a game that makes it work.

Vanguard

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #80 on: April 04, 2014, 08:29:52 PM »
I think prohibiting save scumming is more important than permadeath. But permadeath is great for a game that makes it work.

Permadeath is just a consequence of the inability to save scum.

reaver

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #81 on: April 04, 2014, 08:42:56 PM »
Permadeath is just a consequence of the inability to save scum.

It's more than that. You could generate passwords at the beginning of levels like older, other genres did, to avoid save-scumming but still save you some pain and progress. Permadeath is a complete restart.

Vanguard

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #82 on: April 04, 2014, 09:09:54 PM »
But checkpoints and passwords are nothing more than limited forms of persistent saves and, in the context of roguelikes, any use of persistent saves is save scumming.

reaver

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #83 on: April 04, 2014, 09:24:59 PM »
I don't think I'd call that a limited form of save scumming, but just simply saving... It's like calling a normal-weight person "thinner than obese" if he's not skinny.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014, 09:54:39 PM by reaver »

Vanguard

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #84 on: April 04, 2014, 10:19:42 PM »
It would've been more clear if I had said "Permadeath is just a consequence of the lack of persistent saves."  But either way, checkpoints and passwords are just as out of place in a roguelike as a quicksave function would be.

LazyCat

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #85 on: April 04, 2014, 10:35:40 PM »
Perma guy and Scum guy start playing the same roguelike at the same time.

First month Perma guy keeps playing first 20% of the game, Scum guy completed the game 3 times.

Second month Perma guy reaches 50% of the game a few times, Scum guy completed the game 10 times.

Third month Perma guy regularly gets to 50% of the game, Scum guy completed the game without save-scumming.


Who is having more fun? And how many Perma guys give up before ever completing the game?


sokol815

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #86 on: April 04, 2014, 10:52:10 PM »
my personal thoughts are that I am fine to save-scum, because then I actually have a chance at winning the game. But if I do win the game save-scumming, I don't count it as actually beating the game. I will go back and say "OK, now I need to do it without save-scumming".

In this instance, the save-scumming allows me to gain experience with the game without having to go to a stupid wiki to look everything up. If a wiki is the easiest way to learn something and I am stuck in a game that is probably what I will go look at.

My ideal game would be made in such a way that a wiki will not be very helpful in revealing all the secrets in a game, but playing it will tell you a lot more. This makes it so everything is dependent upon how the world is generated.

In theory, when a world is generated, a plot can be generated as well that is sophisticated enough to not just be repeats of an old plot, but shape the world in a completely different way. A detailed history of the world and a problem that evolves over that history could be the basis for a very promising game.

Repeating the same thing over and over is not something people love to do. Keep them engaged by novel beginnings that vary greatly from one game to another.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014, 10:54:06 PM by sokol815 »
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awake

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #87 on: April 04, 2014, 10:56:22 PM »
I think prohibiting save scumming is more important than permadeath. But permadeath is great for a game that makes it work.

Permadeath is just a consequence of the inability to save scum.

Not if you can't be permanently killed.


awake

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #88 on: April 04, 2014, 10:59:08 PM »
Perma guy and Scum guy start playing the same roguelike at the same time.

First month Perma guy keeps playing first 20% of the game, Scum guy completed the game 3 times.

Second month Perma guy reaches 50% of the game a few times, Scum guy completed the game 10 times.

Third month Perma guy regularly gets to 50% of the game, Scum guy completed the game without save-scumming.


Who is having more fun? And how many Perma guys give up before ever completing the game?

It doesn't matter because scum guy is forever banished from our community. If I wanted to have fun I'd play a game with graphics.

LazyCat

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Re: My two cents about Permadeath
« Reply #89 on: April 04, 2014, 11:47:08 PM »
If I wanted to have fun I'd play a game with graphics.

I see. So when you want to torture yourself you play roguelikes.

I think your situation is rather unique, the general view on why permadeath is better is from the belief that it gives you more pleasure to play it that way, makes you more ecstatic when you finally beat it. And there is truth in there, but the question is whether it is worth the time and what good it is if 90% of the people will give up before ever completing it or even reaching to see more than 20% of the game.

The other question is, how much less fun completing a game with save-scumming really is, if at all. Save-scumming doesn't make you invincible, you still have to overcome all the challenges just the same. The only difference is you learn faster.