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Deus Ex-like Skill System?


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Hi everyone :)


I've been watching this mod since it started, looks awesome by the way--it's looking better than I ever imagined...this is pretty much the reason I bought D3, in hopes that someone would actually make use of the tech before the engine gets outdated.


I know it's not exactly true to the thief series to add much in the way of rpg-style stats, so I don't know if this will get shot down right away, I've just been doing some thinking about what made the thief series so great--walking into unknown territory with just a paper sketch of the place, having no idea what you were going to run into, and only completing each map after 2 or 3 hours of hair raising escapes, madly darting across brightly lit courtyards, generally NOT feeling like you should be there, etc!


I remember that Deus ex also gave pretty much exactly that feeling, but even greater, because of the wider degree of variety to which puzzles, traps, and generally each mission could be solved in completely different ways.


The reason for suggesting a skill system to the game similar to Deus ex? Much greater variety in missions, and much greater immersion. I seem to remember in both Thief I & II, (I haven't even bothered with TDS) that the only thing that really produced variety in missions was the architecture of the map. Granted, there were a good few levels that this really was immersive in (Thief II's chase through the city early in the game stands out to me-plenty of options), but even at their best they don't really reach Deus ex's level of immersion, they're just not as wide open.


The reason I think this would work out so well is that both games are similarly paced, and the levels have about the same size (think about the New York or Tokyo maps in DE) and in general i think it would help the player to feel a little more attached to the character as he is molded a little more to the player's specific liking.

Expectations are future resentments, let tomorrow worry about itself.

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Fair enough then :)


You know, something else that I have thought was sadly lacking from the Thief series is the ability to climb walls...I remember it being implemented in Daggerfall, walls sort of acted like ladders--you oriented your view until you were perfectly square with the wall, walk forward and you were in climbing mode.


I remember playing the Thief 1 demo for hours upon hours when I couldn't afford to buy it, the level was simple enough, you entered a giant well guarded chateau in search of the owner's jewel encrusted staff. The thing that made it absolutely brilliant was that the whole house was constructed of nice thick wooden beams and pillars. You could shoot a rope arrow just about anywhere, and use height as an advantage much more than in the levels where everything is made of stone. Sometimes I would sit perched right above the final guard, high in the rafters where he couldn't see, and shoot arrows around the darkened room to confuse the crap out of the guy. it was just FUN.


I think there should still be a way to achieve these kinds of maneuvers on certain materials. Granted, a perfectly smooth wall should be unscalable, but climbable bricks or certain kinds of stone would keep levels fresh. The advantage to rope arrows, of course, is their virtual silence, they are quicker, and they allow you to climb anywhere, not just against a wall.

Edited by Cyberwolf

Expectations are future resentments, let tomorrow worry about itself.

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Atm Darkmods feels allready too much like if it was a parkour game :P so no problem mantling most walls that are possible to climb with all those equipment..after all he is a master of sneaking and not spiderman.


by the way about the deus ex like skill system..i dont think there is much place for it here..deus ex is an rpg..means that you could shoot anybody in the head with that pistol, but if your character is untrained you just wont succeed whatever big fps champion you are..while thief is a player-skill based game.

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I never liked most RPGs based on the D & D rules, where combat is decided by a roll of the die or a random number generator, instead of player skill. The skill system in Deus Ex was different though, it didn't detract from the players skill in an annoying way. For example, if you picked up a sniper rifle, and were untrained, you could still use it, and if you were a skillful player your won skill would override the wobblyness of using a sniper rifle while untrained. The skill system in DE just made it easier to aim once you were trained.



Anyway, what I really liked about Deus Ex was the multiple ways you could play the game, and the way choices made early in the game affected events much later in the game. That aspect can be easily implemented in TDM without any need for an RGP styled skill system, it is just up to mappers building non-linear missions with multiple play styles in mind.

Edited by obscurus
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This idea falls squarely into the relm of "community modifications" :)


@Obscurus - I agree about video game stat based RPGs. There is no difficulty in stat based RPGs, just tedium. When you come up against a "hard" boss, you die, go away and kill hundreds of little guys to make your numbers go up, then come back and defeat the boss. So it's not hard, it's tedious. Strategy is limited, its the high numbers that dictate the outcome.

The dice rolling concept was invented for pen and paper RPGs to simulate real-time combat - not nessecary in a real-time game. In the pen and paper RPGs you can do literally anything to increase your chances in combat (at the DMs discretion), and that kind of flexibility is what makes it work - you can't do literally anything in a video game, which is why the RPGs are reduced to tedium.

This Final Fantasy and Pokemon shit just appeals to the masses - you don't need skill, just a lot of time to waste harvesting enemies to make your numbers go higher.


I also agree about Deus Ex. It's the only stat based game I like, because it doesn't totally remove player skill like all the others do.

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There's an interesting discussion going on in the SS2 forum at TTLG about moving SS2 assets over to Thief-dromed to make SS2-type FMs in Thief (this will be relevant, don't worry...).


The main punchline of the discussion is that classic-SS2 FMs virtually *never* get made because they have RPG elements; and there are so many Thief FMs precisely because they are not RPG, but limited, discrete, one-shot type missions.


Having stats, improvable/upgradable skills, etc, all the RPG elements you see in DX and SS2 require epic campaigns to even be relevant ... and the lion's share of TDM FMs won't (or shouldn't) be like that, nor should authors feel pressured to make epic style FMs (and I mean really big; think about it) because so many RPG elements are part of the basic interface. A lot of authors won't want to bother (they'd rather make the more discrete mission, particularly novices, which everyone will be at one point; and getting new authors to *want* to build with TDM is essential to keeping TDM FMs continuing to be made), and those that do try will waste years making 1 probably incomplete FM when they could have made 3+ complete non-RPG FMs in the same time.


That's the best argument I see against having any RPG elements in TDM, and comparing the number of DX & SS2 FMs vs. Thief FMs (not just for that reason, but that's a big reason), is the best evidence.




ps, I should say I loved both SS2 and DX, and I loved their RPG elements ... so it's not because of any intrinsic dislike of RPGs that I'm saying this. I just don't think it's conducive to FM-making; it'd do much more harm than good IMHO.

Edited by demagogue

What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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Well, those one shot missions tend to be based on the thief world playing as garret (and even if they aren't it's hard to dispell that notion). So in that respect looting makes sense and you could also implement rpg/skill rules in a big and popular setting (ie the main campaign). Where by people will pretty much do the same as with the thief one shot missions and base it on the most official and biggest world.


But that said, you are a thief, and the game is entirely engineered around that, so any rpg/skill system would be oriented around that, and where rpgs tend to provide a variety of playstyles you would be limiting the player to a specific play style which would have the result of players choosing the thief stats.


I'm an avid rpger, i'm currently in a d&d campaign that has 9 people including the dm (an adventurer army). But i don't like dnd rules system, sure it's the most developed but it is the least thought out and can be quite tricky. The latest editions are better, but it seems the whole system is oriented around getting people to buy books (which we don't really do ;)).


The problem i have with fps games and sword/archery combat where your chances of hitting are determined by random chance is the whole visual aspect. you face the target and swing, the weapon looks completely like it's hitting, but then you hear some dodgy 'your weapon missed' noise. that said there are plenty of areas other than aiming where you can implement rpg style rules, like damage and different attack types.


If I were to put rpg style things into TDM i would do it through items. You'd have daggers that would hit for more damage, or bows with a greater draw strength on them allowing more damage and range, or specially made boots that are quieter on hard surfaces like marble. Then offer them in the usual buy your items before mission style format (and if in a campaign make them permanent acquisitions).


ohh yeah why don't we have any friggin crossbows?

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