Author Topic: Bones -- how far can you go with them?  (Read 11118 times)

Vanguard

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #15 on: April 23, 2014, 06:56:03 PM »
That'd be cool, especially if the weapon was an artifact with powers based on how that character played. If they killed a lot of orcs, maybe it does extra damage vs. orcs. If they also had fire magic, maybe it's a fire sword.

That's a cool idea.

It might be interesting to be able to appease ghosts in some way.  Like, if they were killed by a monster, you hunt it down and avenge them.  If they starved, you offer food at their grave.  If they died during a quest, you finish it on their behalf, and so forth.

wire_hall_medic

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2014, 12:24:35 AM »
A feature of my current project is along these lines; when a character dies, if there is an available slot there is a chance he is saved as a rescue.  Level progression is like DoomRL, in that there is a linear series of levels, with optional side levels.  One type of side level is a jail, in which the player can rescue the old character (sans equipment, of course).  Once rescued, a character cannot be captured again (he just dies).

I'll have to add in some of the ideas here; fight the restless spirit of the former hero, or find his legendary blade (take a piece of equipment he had equipped and add appropriate bonuses to it).

Zireael

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #17 on: June 11, 2014, 07:06:25 PM »
Are there any games in which bones files can be recycled, in the sense of, once the player kills the ghost, the ghost gets a THIRD existence either as a more powerful undead being, or alternatively as a more subtle memory (for example, you might find a sword with his name on it, or he might be mentioned in a random "bad luck" message during certain phases of the moon.  It would be nice to think about how we could permanently weave dead characters into the game, without the game getting too cluttered.

That's an EXCELLENT idea!

Paul Jeffries

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #18 on: June 11, 2014, 10:39:21 PM »
What if you could revive these characters somehow -- say by some difficult process that kills your current character or massively complicates their attempt to actually win -- and the bones character became yours to play? Good or wack?

I kind of presuppose this is a multiuser system thing (i.e. public telnet or similar) and I'd be completely fine with requiring that the original player of the bones character cannot do the reviving. Good clean fun or dangerous departure from established norms?

Shiren the Wanderer (at least, the DS version) had something very much like this.  When you died, you got a code that you could give to somebody else with a copy of the game, who could then go to the level that you died on and 'rescue' you (which I think meant they got a code to give back to you which would resurrect your character - I'm not sure because I never actually did it).

AgingMinotaur

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #19 on: June 12, 2014, 11:46:44 AM »
Are there any games in which bones files can be recycled, in the sense of, once the player kills the ghost, the ghost gets a THIRD existence either as a more powerful undead being, or alternatively as a more subtle memory (for example, you might find a sword with his name on it, or he might be mentioned in a random "bad luck" message during certain phases of the moon.  It would be nice to think about how we could permanently weave dead characters into the game, without the game getting too cluttered.
That's an EXCELLENT idea!
That would definitely be interesting. It would probably be wise to cap how many ghosts are allowed to exist at any given point. Not all characters are memorable, but the game could elect to store them based on criteria like high scores or turn counts, big kill lists, exceptional wealth etc. As you start out with the game, you'd get "low level" ghosts, eg. if your very first character dies to a giant rat in the first sewer level, your third or fourth might encounter the restless spirit of the first, who assigns a quest to kill a giant rat. As more playthroughs raise the bar for what's deemed exceptional, ghosts would grow in power: One could assign a difficult quest with a high reward, another could show up as an evil undead overlord.

On a related note, I think it could also be interesting to have the option to retire certain characters. They would then become NPCs, who might provide services to future PCs, eg. as shopkeepers or nobility. I think it would have to be balanced so that the player needs to decide whether it's worth it to retire a character, or take the risk of going on another adventure (success would mean a greater payoff when finally retiring, failure might in worst case store the bones to use as a vengeful spirit against future heroes).

I guess a game that makes extensive use of bones and/or retirement might warrant to "reset the world" after a certain amount of playthroughs, clearing it of ghosts and retired past heroes. Or vice versa. Maybe there is a main plot that "Hell is boiling over, and Heaven is full", and as you play the game many times, the world just slowly gets overcrowded with ghosts.

In any case. Bones are exceptionally cool in themselves, and certainly a mechanic which hasn't been thoroughly explored. Or are there good examples of existing games using mechanics like the ones discussed in this thread?

As always,
Minotauros
This matir, as laborintus, Dedalus hous, hath many halkes and hurnes ... wyndynges and wrynkelynges.

Kevin Granade

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #20 on: June 19, 2014, 06:13:25 AM »
Neat related mechanic from an old game.  In AvP for the Jaguar, if you played the Xenomorph, you could cocoon up to three enemies, and when you were killed you'd respawn at the most recent one.  It was a really interesting mechanic, individual Xenomorphs were fairly fragile, but it was about maintaining momentum rather than preserving any particular life.

Bear

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Re: Bones -- how far can you go with them?
« Reply #21 on: July 02, 2014, 06:54:23 PM »
Recursive ghosts already happen in nethack. 

Someone finds a bones level.  It has the named ghost of a former adventurer, the former adventurer's (cursed) equipment stack, and a lot of nasties which killed that adventurer. New person dies, leaving a new bones level.  New bones level contains the new named ghost, the new adventurer's (cursed) equipment stack, plus a lot of nasties which killed that adventurer - including the former named ghost and the former (cursed) equipment stack....  Rinse, repeat.  There have been bones levels with as many as four player ghosts.  I don't know if there's any limit, except that the chance of leaving a bones level is never 100%.