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March 15th, 2013, 23:14
Update 25 sees a WIP combat video for Dead State.
What you’re about to see is our work-in-progress combat demo. It shouldn’t be seen as a preview of a final game, but as a milestone that shows a lot of our basic systems coming online as a playable whole. There’s still a lot to create and balance, but the basics of the game that you helped fund is taking shape. Let’s take a first look:

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March 15th, 2013, 23:14
Looks great. Loved the noise meter. Didn't dig on the combat music or sounds themselves so much, but I like the concept of the noise meter.

Loved the zombies a comin' a shamblin' after making too much noise at the end of the video. Very nice to see something in action for Dead State, possibly my most-anticipated game these days .
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March 16th, 2013, 11:21
Looks good. My only concern is lack of variety in the enemies. I hope they can manage to keep battles interesting throughout the game.
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March 16th, 2013, 13:16
So far, they stick to uncontrolled allies. Lets hope that feature does not get too diluted by players' feedback. It is the main reason I backed this project.
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March 16th, 2013, 13:46
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
Looks good. My only concern is lack of variety in the enemies. I hope they can manage to keep battles interesting throughout the game.
My thoughts too. I hope there will be boss fights as well, though I am not sure since the focus is on survival. I like that combat does not lead to character advancement, and is probably best avoided. That's certainly a unique mechanic to the genre.

Did he say all the containers are randomized? The surroundings are a little too clean looking for there having been an apocalyptic event. There weren't many signs of struggles or evidence of bloody fights. Then again, that aspect of the game may not be finished.

On the plus side, I like the combat, the noise meter. The music was eerie and atmospheric. It reminded me a lot of Fallout, which is a good thing.
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March 17th, 2013, 11:17
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
Looks good. My only concern is lack of variety in the enemies. I hope they can manage to keep battles interesting throughout the game.
Really? I've always been kinda annoyed with games where I cannot control my "party" members. Like in Fallout 1 & 2 where they always managed to get themselves killed. ALL THE TIME. Don't get me wrong, a good game is a good game even if I don't have the option to control my party, and the Fallouts where great. And I have high hopes that Dead State will be great too, I would just prefer it if I had control. Why not make it an option?
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March 17th, 2013, 11:54
Combat so far doesn't look impressive especially compared to recent Wasteland 2 and Shadowrun returns videos it lacks tactical options, but game still sounds good overall with it's survival aspects and I love sound mechanics.I would like some party member control at least indirect like attack nearest, attack my target, stand ground etc shouts.
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March 17th, 2013, 16:20
If you read the thread about this video on the Dead State forum it's apparent that they are still implementing a lot of features and tweaking things. While this video didn't blow me away I'm sure the final product will be great.

This for instance will make a big difference:
"Most of the animations are still missing. They mentioned that the reload animation was still not in and they didn't use any special attacks since they are missing as well. There are probably others missing as well. Once they get all the animations in, I think it will look more dynamic."

They are also considering some sort of fog of war among other things.
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March 17th, 2013, 17:27
There are a few table top games using the same game settings, that is survival.

Combat, as a highly risk taking endeavour, is to be avoided. Combat decreases the survival rate.

Zombies are way too numerous to kill them all. Killing zombies is just a waste of resources and a risk that seldom pays off. Killing zombies has no meaning by itself.
You dont want to kill or fight zombies. You want to avoid them as most of the encounters against them is made at a loss. You kill zombies when you can do otherwise, when they stand between you and your objectives (loot, cleaning a place to make a shelter of it etc)

So far, their approach have been consistent with the survival experience they want to deliver. Zombies bring no loot and no xp. Because the game is not about combat, it is about survival.

Success will go through achieving objectives in a certain manner (bringing back loot, recruiting, taking no loss/reducing risk as possible) Probably they will tie xp to all those parameters. Might be some combat specialization skills around though.

So far, they demonstrated that they had a clear vision of what they want to deliver and solid ideas on the ways to deliver (been done in some other games so they have reference points)

All it remains to be seen is to whether they manage to stick to their design page.

A lot of features are expected to bring flak on them like macro control over allies, randomization of loot, combat is a secondary dimension, xp tied to completion of objectives etc

Cant remember if they sold an access to alpha and beta gaming. The forums promised to be wild rodeo.
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March 17th, 2013, 17:56
"Zombies bring no loot and no xp." - I think I read that zombies will have minor loot. Like personal items that they had before turning into a zombie. But they wont drop "amazing zombie smasher club +3" every other zombie kill.

Here is the quote from Brian.
"You are correct about zombies having loot. Occasionally they do. The first zombie I killed in the video had an arrow stuck in them. Most zombies have minor loot, things they may have been carrying on them when they died."
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March 17th, 2013, 18:02
Originally Posted by ChienAboyeur View Post
So far, they stick to uncontrolled allies. Lets hope that feature does not get too diluted by players' feedback. It is the main reason I backed this project.
I get that you prefer autonomous allies, but that's your main reason for backing it? That's like saying I bought Fallout because of their barter system.

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March 17th, 2013, 18:50
Originally Posted by tomasp3n View Post
Really? I've always been kinda annoyed with games where I cannot control my "party" members. Like in Fallout 1 & 2 where they always managed to get themselves killed. ALL THE TIME. Don't get me wrong, a good game is a good game even if I don't have the option to control my party, and the Fallouts where great. And I have high hopes that Dead State will be great too, I would just prefer it if I had control. Why not make it an option?
I understand your point, and I often feel the same way about this as you. In this game, however, I think your allies getting themselves killed foolishly could actually work. As Chien pointed out, this game is about survivial. Brian Mitsoda has said on their forums that your followers aren't commandos, even the ones that lean toward combat skills more than others. THese are regular people. They will panic and do follish things. Doing foolish things, even outside of the game's panic mechanic, fits with the setting. Unlike most games, combat really is to be avoided. You get experience for completing objectives, none for combat itself. Your followers doing stupid things in the face of death that leads to their demise seems to me to be a good consequence of taking the risk of combat — and a fitting one for the setting. Hopefully, losing people will be inevitable and an inherent part of the tension and drama of the game, like in X-Com.

I imagine Brian and crew will get some flak for design decisions such as this one, as peope are used to doing the very best they can possibly do — and being given the tools to do so — but I hope they stick to their guns and their original vision.
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March 17th, 2013, 21:48
On one hand, i think the game looks good and is a dream come true for me as i love zombie apocalypse stuff and have been waiting for a game to do it right. This is potentially one of my favorite games of all time, if they do it right. Rpg, survival, sort of like what Fort Zombie wanted to do, but actually make it a quality, playable game.

On the other hand, I'm seeing someone walk up behind a zombie and smash it in the head w/ a crowbar, and the thing doesnt go down. Really? Seems to me like the player should be rewarded for taking the enemy by surprise, stealthily, with an instant kill as you smash it's brain in one precise blow. Instead, it's rock em sock em robots time, as usual. Not so good. They need to re-think damage, in my opinion

Also, the looter is shot twice, once at point blank range with a shotgun and he doesnt go down. I realize that things need to have enough hit points to make the game challenging, but I reallyt think there should be some situational modifiers that affect combat when triggered.
You walk up and smash an enemy in the head from behind w/ a successful blow - dead
You shoot an enemy point blank w/ a high powered weapon- dead
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March 17th, 2013, 23:44
Off topic if you guys are into zombie themes check out zpocalypse the board game…cool times.

I thought the combat video looked great, I just hope the game gets released when it is supposed to.

If you don't stand behind your troops, feel free to stand in front.
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March 19th, 2013, 13:43
Originally Posted by screeg View Post
I get that you prefer autonomous allies, but that's your main reason for backing it? That's like saying I bought Fallout because of their barter system.
I cant see how the barter system in fallout was as promising as having uncontrolled allied NPCs (uncontrolled in combat as they aim to provide general directions to NPCs before combat)

It is a compelling game design choice that ensures that they go a certain direction.
The game is (supposed to be) about survival and leadership. Uncontrolled characters open the door to a quality feedback on leadership.
It also warrantees they can invest developpment time on certain features without fearing the player does not see them.

You are on a good run, being successful at expeditions:

controlled characters: you dont care. The morale aspect of your allies is secondary as you control them fully. No matter how hard combat is, you can game the system. Feedback on leadership does not matter.

uncontrolled characters: you must capitalize on the good morale and trust your allies grant you. You must aim higher than usual in order to secure some few days in advance.

You are on a poor run:

controlled characters: you dont care. You can game the system and you do not have to fear poor reactions from your allies, the commandment chain being perfect.

Uncontrolled characters: you must factor in the start of loss of confidence your allies have. They might reveal less reliable than you think. You have to think of the situations they can endure. You might have to bargain with other groups in order to get items in a secure way, to rebuild the morale.

Uncontrolled characters: a near certainty allies are going to flee or die in combat.
You can invest on features like returning to camp after fleeing combat. It might create friction with those who remained solid in the previous combat. They might ask the leader to expell the coward. Dead characters, survivors might ask for explanation etc You can invest on developping all these features because you know players are going to struggle to game the system.

Uncontrolled characters warrants a quality feedback loop on the leadership. The coders can spend time implementing an expert system to analyze the leadership because they know the players are going to struggle to game the system. This opens the doors to contextualization of decisions taken as a leader and assessment based on the results following these decisions.

Randomization of loot will ensure that no run is acquired as you might do things well but run out of luck.

Etc…

Quite a fruitful compelling game design decision.
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March 19th, 2013, 15:43
There are intermediate areas between Fully Controlled and Uncontrolled. Morale could still impact NPCs. The allies are not in fact uncontrolled, in the sense that you give them orders pre-battle and they try to carry them out.

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March 20th, 2013, 15:18
I like the video and, as others have already pointed out, the fact that you don't get XP for killing zombies thus avoiding grinding and emphasising survival.

What I don't like is the fast paced hi-hat in the combat music as it somehow gets on my nerves. Plus, I think that this fast paced sound clashes with the slow paced turn based combat.
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