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Hold Your Breath?


ZylonBane

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This has probably already been discussed on the internal forums, but what the heck...

 

I think it would be great if, when entering a poison-gas area, you would get a breath-meter like when you're underwater instead of just automatically taking damage. I figure a master thief should be capable of holding his breath whether he's swimming or not.

 

It's not like there aren't other ways to automatically hurt the player, and this would provide mappers a way to hurry players through areas without being forced to damage them (thus avoiding the "here's a convenient health potion, you'll need it" syndrome).

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I can't remember, but didn't System Shock 2 have something like this? Oh wait, I think it was for radioactive areas and you probably had to innoculate yourself first? Either way, I like it. I hate having fore-warning that you're about to enter an area that's not like the rest. Kinda like in FPS games where you get a new big weapon, tons of ammo and grenades, 5 health packs and a checkpoint save right before a big boss character.

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I don't think an extra button for this would be needed; nor is it desired. When you go under water, you don't need to press a button to hold your breath; it just happens. Same would happen for a gaseous room... the thief just automatically starts holding his breath.

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We would need the hold-the-breath button for this, but I think it might be a good addition. :) This should be easi. Just start a stim timer when you press that button.

 

That's the thing about you, I never know if you're being sarcastic or not... :P

 

On the off-chance that you are not being sarcastic, it could work just the same as water, where when you enter the area a breath meter appears etc. In fact, it could work -exaclty- like water in that you choke once you run out of air etc.

 

Though re-reading your post, you're definately being sarcastic...ugh lol

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If this works automatically, then it defeats the purpose of such a room IMO. Also the water is a seperate brush, so it is easy to detect. Would this mean that we should create another brush for gas? And if we don't use a brush, but detect it based on the enviorment, it means that you can't do traps like in T2 where the room was filled with gas, because our Thief would automatically hold his breath, which is kind of pointless for such a trap.

Gerhard

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If this works automatically, then it defeats the purpose of such a room IMO. Also the water is a seperate brush, so it is easy to detect. Would this mean that we should create another brush for gas? And if we don't use a brush, but detect it based on the enviorment, it means that you can't do traps like in T2 where the room was filled with gas, because our Thief would automatically hold his breath, which is kind of pointless for such a trap.

 

Fair enough, thats pretty good then :)

 

I thought you were being sarcastic like that blibking one....ugh lol

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I don't see why there can't be two different types of gas--environmental and explosive. In environmental gas you hold your breath automatically, just like water, and the gas forces you to get out of the area quickly, just like water. It serves the same purpose. The gas should probably not be invisible, but even if it was the player would know he entered it because his breath meter would start going down. If we need a rationalization for how the thief knows to hold his breath, then it can be because he starts smelling the gas before it reaches dangerous concentration.

 

Explosive gas like gas arrows are a different matter, since they KO or damage you instantly. And since you don't know they're coming, you wouldn't really have the time or inclination to hold your breath.

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Explosive gas like gas arrows are a different matter, since they KO or damage you instantly. And since you don't know they're coming, you wouldn't really have the time or inclination to hold your breath.

 

That and you'd have them very strong to ko the guard quickly, or theres no point to them. Sorta like nerve gas but with aneasthetic type stuff.

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Gas als has to be breathed. There are no two differnt types of gas. And I'm not talking about rationalisation, because a normal human would also start to hold his breath if he realizes that he inhales poisonous fumes. And that is independent from where the gas comes from.

So we have bascially three types of gas then. Gas that comes as a brush. Gas that results from the gas arrow. And gas that is used as a trap. Three "different" descriptions for the same effect. Sounds very efficient to me.

Gerhard

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I only see two categories: "static" gas that is implemented as a brush, and used for traps, hostile environments or water, and "transient" gas that results from an explosion or gas arrow.

 

Only the static variety would need a breath meter. There are gasses that can induce unconsciousness with a single breath, and it is reasonably to assume that a person caught in a gas explosion may be too startled to work out that they need to start holding their breath (in fact they would probably take an involuntary breath out of surprise).

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If you drop the "static" gas into one category then how do you know when it is a trap or when the breat meter sould kick in?

 

That is up to the mapper.

 

1) He can place the static gas in such a way that getting out of it before your breath expires is very difficult.

2) He could set up the trap so that it released the explosive arrow gas on activation, possibly multiple times if certain death was required.

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how do you know when it is a trap or when the breat meter sould kick in?

 

If the gas is static (it's part of the environment) then the breath meter would always kick in, even if it's triggered by a trap.

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I don't see what is wrong with the 2 types of gas idea.

 

It's not like when you get a hit of this KO gas you will pre-detect it (You're probably going to have breathed it in to smell/taste it!) and hold you breath, you'd go "What the! Gasp! Ugh!" **KO**.

 

This is a great idea!

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That's ok. But the difference is, that you either have to react to it, in a uniform way, by pressing the breath key until your breath expires, at which time you start to breath again and inhale the gas, if it is still there.

Or you have some circumstances where the gas is there, but automagically the Thief holds his breath on his own. The player can not even know beforehand which one will happen, because in one case (without the extra key) it will simply damage him, and in the other case it will not for a certain time.

Gerhard

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I don't see that there is a big problem however - if you contrast the effects of diethyl ether (a general anasthetic) with nitrogen dioxide (a reddish-brown, foul-smelling acidic gas that more or less forces you to hold you breath, but is poisonous if you do inhale).

 

One gas will be inhaled, and you will pass out, whereas the other you will notice as soon as you try to breathe and hold your breath until you get out (or collapse).

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Some poison (nerve) gasses are absorbed through the skin though.

Ditto that. I was about to suggest that there be another area gas type (maybe red in homage to Thief's rust gas) that harms the player directly. So you'd have:

 

1. Gas that doesn't harm the player as long as they can hold their breath (as soon as you run out of breath, you begin taking gradual damage as per normal).

2. Gas that consumes the player's flesh! EEAAAGH!! (eg, Thief-style gas)

 

Gas arrows would just use the "unblockable" gas damage type. And yeah, no "hold breath" key. That would be unnecessary and inconsistent.

 

So for example-- the player walks into a room, triggers a pressure plate, and the door slams shut behind him. Vents open up and gush forth thick clouds of gas. The mapper decides whether this gas is of the direct-damage or hold-your-breath variety. If there's a way out, he should pick the hold-your-breath kind. If it's intended as a kill trap, may as well just go with the damaging gas and get things over with.

Edited by ZylonBane
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My only contribution is my first intuition that, unlike water, it seems with gas that maybe the breath-holding should hold-off for maybe 1 breath and then start, so there'd be one breath, a bad cough, and maybe a little damage taken, and then you hear the tell-tale sign of breath-holding and a meter or whatever. I just have the image, if I entered a gas filled room that that first rancid breath would be the cue I need to hold my breath, and it would really convey the message that it's a room full of rancid gas that you are now entering.

 

Also, this way there is still always a little cost for directly entering (after all deadly) gas that you might expect which you wouldn't expect with water.

 

The issue with this is you would expect this the first time, but it might come across as dumb to forget to start holding your breath *every* time you want to run through the passage (that was what actually bugged me about SS2; not being surprised by gas suddenly filling a room, but when I *see* it there, or have to run *back* through it, you'd think I'd have learned to hold my breath in advance.)

 

BTW, this is the advantage I see to Spar's idea about a breath-holding button ... because then you only have yourself to blame for not remembering to hold your breath *in advance* before entering the gas, which actually isn't natural, whereas with water it's a reflex. And it fits with the intuition, before entering a room of gas, that you'd mentally say to yourself, "ok, here we go, *huuuughh*" (hold breath) and then you start running. So it's not a terrible idea, I just don't have a feel right now how the gameplay would pan out. I also have the intuition that it's not a good idea to add more gameplay affecting functions unless they really have added value. So I'd have to see the two versions in action to have a better idea if there's really added value with a new keyed function or if it just comes across as gratuitous.

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, implementionwise it is not hard to do to add a hold-breath key. We have to write the function anyway, and allowing the player to bind a key to it, is about 2 seconds of coding. At whcih point the player couild decide himself wether he want that or not, while it wouldn't affect the automatic breath holding not in the least.

Gerhard

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