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A4 Review. (link) in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #12
If I recall, a review of the Notary Public's Handbook once began something along the lines of 'I am about to review the Notary Public's Handbook. This review would have been much easier had I actually read the book I am reviewing, but that doesn't seem to have stoppped anyone else, so with that in mind, here we go...'

This review is clearly in the same vein, I'm not sure there is anything factually acurate about this review.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Are Geneforge and Avernum related? in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #5
Specifically, "Shaping" refers to crystals.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Bows are weak? in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #8
Where's the Heartstriker?
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Avernum V in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #244
I'm a big fan of the Rentar, Erika, Garzhad announcement.

Incidentally, what is translated as a phylactery is more accurately refered to as tefillin. They don't contain the entire Torah, only Exodus 13:1-10, Exodus 13:11-16, Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Deuteronomy 11:13-21. Those are the commandments to wear tefilin and the central prayer (creed, if you will) of Judaism.

That just got me waay off topic, so, let me just close by saying that I'm in the camp which wants something totally new.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
What does Kelner have to do with Patrick's Tower? in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #3
Humm...I think I return to my previous problem. I got those doors in X's tower open. (There's a spell book behind one, and nothing behind the other two.) Is this a bug?
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Athame in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #19
Well, I dun know how I did it, but I managed it. Maybe I had high enough pick locks? (31ish)
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Athame in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #17
Well...I did it. Unlock L3.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Athame in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #15
If it must be used, it should pop your tool use to like a bajillion, and have an infinte number of charges of unlock doors at level a million. Canon, hell, D&D, standard mythology, and Harry Potter, tells us that the holy anthame can break through any lock. Here's the problem, though. As it is, with my tool use and level three unlock doors, I can get to any door or chest in the game including the ones I need a key for or need to complete a quest to unlock. Not exactly plot helping, especially since I don't always know what is a plot related door or chest that I'm breaking though. For example, I broke into the royal suite and talked with Starrus before the advisor was dead...

Incidentally, I really wish we had both the Anthame and the Orb. It would make the game a lot more interesting in several ways. I mean, we have all the supposedly dead NPC's, why not the lewt?
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Is this Plot Overcliche? in Blades of Avernum Editor
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #21
Well, cannon says that Demons where what were found in Exile/Avernum when everyone came down, so I'm accepting cannon.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Is this Plot Overcliche? in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #21
Well, cannon says that Demons where what were found in Exile/Avernum when everyone came down, so I'm accepting cannon.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Is this Plot Overcliche? in Blades of Avernum Editor
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #12
What about "good" undead? I'm having a pretty tough time creating friendly towns, so undead and demons are playing roles as NPC's. I figure I can finagle one human settlement (miners who got lost, and are making the best of it), but much more than that, other than the people you come down with, is really pushing it. That means I need to use Sliths, Demons, Nephs, Drakes, Undead, and damn near everyone I can think of as friendlies. Few of them are "absolute" friendlies. Most are only willing to let you into their town because you can help them. And yes, this scenario is way over ambititious, especially since I only have the first outdoor section finished. (It's a biggie though. It has 17 towns since most of the towns go through three or four versions throughout the game.)
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Is this Plot Overcliche? in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #12
What about "good" undead? I'm having a pretty tough time creating friendly towns, so undead and demons are playing roles as NPC's. I figure I can finagle one human settlement (miners who got lost, and are making the best of it), but much more than that, other than the people you come down with, is really pushing it. That means I need to use Sliths, Demons, Nephs, Drakes, Undead, and damn near everyone I can think of as friendlies. Few of them are "absolute" friendlies. Most are only willing to let you into their town because you can help them. And yes, this scenario is way over ambititious, especially since I only have the first outdoor section finished. (It's a biggie though. It has 17 towns since most of the towns go through three or four versions throughout the game.)
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Is this Plot Overcliche? in Blades of Avernum Editor
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #0
Okay, so I'm using demons as my major enemy. My plot is set before the founding of Avernum (possibly before the First Expedition: remember the "increadibly ancient" armor you find on the soldiers in the Spiral Crypt? I take that to mean there were people here before the First Expedition, especially since the First Expedition starts getting pretty big, at that point.) Here's the thing, the big baddie, we are repeatedly told, before Miccah, Mages, & Co. cleaned them out were demons. The way I have it set up, the Demons have a pretty political situation set up, and have found a ballance of power. Then you and assorted Bobs come down, and pull a Dorothy, and kill one of the Demon Kings unballancing the whole thing...

Too cliche, or no?

(And yeah, it may never be released. Let's get beyond that, please.)
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Is this Plot Overcliche? in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #0
Okay, so I'm using demons as my major enemy. My plot is set before the founding of Avernum (possibly before the First Expedition: remember the "increadibly ancient" armor you find on the soldiers in the Spiral Crypt? I take that to mean there were people here before the First Expedition, especially since the First Expedition starts getting pretty big, at that point.) Here's the thing, the big baddie, we are repeatedly told, before Miccah, Mages, & Co. cleaned them out were demons. The way I have it set up, the Demons have a pretty political situation set up, and have found a ballance of power. Then you and assorted Bobs come down, and pull a Dorothy, and kill one of the Demon Kings unballancing the whole thing...

Too cliche, or no?

(And yeah, it may never be released. Let's get beyond that, please.)
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Avernum V in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #214
quote:
Originally written by Hassium:

How about you are hired as part of an exploration/settlement mission to new lands. So, you could have tasks such as saving a group of settlers under attack/subduing hostile enemies, exploring and charting new territory (including reporting back on mysterious events) perhaps making first contact and negotiating trade/property treaties.

You could even incorporate some timed missions ala ZKR. But, here I would run the mission so that if you took time to explore an area you might find a powerful weapon or a different explore might uncover a new spell that would aid you on your timed mission. The consequence would be that negative events would be advanced by the time taken to explore (i.e. you must relieve an outpost, part of the outpost is decimated if you choose a sidequest). the side quest might make the mission easier but you would then suffer an experience loss (would not get as much as if you managed to save the whole outpost). After the mission you would be free to retrace your steps and do all the side explores/quests.

You could be required to discover the source of herbs or other medicines.

I think a lot of things could be done with this. Thoughts?

I think it's an excelent idea. In fact, I thought it was such an excelent idea that I'm working off and on on a scenario that is more or less exactly what you said, with a fairly significant twist.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
15 inch 17 inch monitor in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #3
I'm on 14.1" TFT LCD monitor (running next to a 17" ViewSonic CRT with other stuff), and have no problemos. I'm only at 720x1024pix resolution.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Avernum V in Avernum 4
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #177
Well, A5 could always be A0, you know, the First Party. In fact, I'm working on a little something along those lines, though I do change the history around a bit, well, if it's ever finished, you'll see.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Article -- Non-Linearity: The Doctrine of Causality in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #9
Is it enough to be "non-linear"? I think anyone who can ask that question is either 1) trying to deal with community perceptions or 2) completely misunderstanding the difference between linearity and non-linearity.

Linearity (in my oppinion) is a continuum. Is there black and white? Of course, but there's lots and lots of grey. I don't think that either the black or the white is much fun because one is a film, and the other is called real life. Without playing a scenario several times, I don't think I could actually say just how linear it is.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Linearity is God's Gift to Humanity! in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #0
"Linearity is God's gift to humanity."

Defend or refute.
Please do so in this thread as a curtesy to our fellow board users, please confine our discussion to this thread.

For the purposes of this debate:
1) "Linear" means a scenario with a single storyline that is the same, and done more or less the same order every time it is played.
2) "God's gift to humanity" means the same thing as "a really good thing" and should be considered without prejudice to any religion, sect, cult, theological or philisophical position, or lack thereof, nor to any creatures outside of the species h. sapiens (or h. sapiens sapiens, depending on how you feel about the different taxinomical classifications) who happen to play Blades of Avernum or make scenarios for it.

NB: While I know this may seem kinda tounge in cheek, I am trying to concentrate this argument in one thread so that we can let the rest of the board return to its main function.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Blades Converted To A Strategy Game in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #10
Sorry to nitpick, but traditionally commanders work strategically, while leaders work tactically.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Article - bjlhct2 On Scenario Design pt 1: Linearity in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #79
I still haven't heard you name one singleplayer RPG that is both good and completely non-linear. Even the Bioware games (Baldur's Gate, Baldur's Gate 2, Neverwinter Nights) are all linear, to some degree. At least you can't change sides in any of them.

You seem to have defined linear as "there is a specific plot" and non-linear as "you can do whatever you like, whenever you like." I can think of no game that is truely non-linear in that sense.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Article -- Non-Linearity: The Doctrine of Causality in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #0
Non-Linearity: The Doctrine of Causality

You can sum up the contents of this article fairly simply:
IC actions have IC consequences.

This concept is fairly basic. The most extreme example, and a fairly narrow one, is if you attack the king while the king's guards are present. Logically, you would expect to be attacked by those guards and probably killed. In terms of fate and free-will, you excercised your free will to attack the king. This instigated an IC action. The action had IC consequences: the royal guards attacked your character.

If you wish to make a non-linear scenario, you should still do so in a way that engroses the player. In effect, what you are doing is creating a flow-chart. At each choice, your plot splits and there are different events for the party depending on the choice. You could also have a non-choice. If the party is not presented with a choice, but they merely fail to complete a task in a set time, then they can be taken on a whole new adventure. Let us take the scenario the Zha-Khazi Run (ZKR). Instead of stipulating that you must get to Fort Cavallier in 14 days, what if you were told to get there as fast as your possibly could? Now, if you get there in less than 14 days, you can breeze in, but perhaps the Sliths are involved in a major assault, so you can't escape through the side exit until you help fight off the Sliths. If you get there in between 14 and 21 days, you have to fight your way through more serious opposition, but by the time you get to the fort and deliver the wands, that tips the ballance, and you can now safely leave. If it takes you between 21 and 28 days, the Fort has been overrun and you need to rescue the prisoners. If it takes you more than 28 days, you fail, and all sorts of other bad stuff happens. That is a time-choice. You have delayed, and you must face the consequences of your delay.

Now lets discuss the whole concept of changing sides. Generally, the party will change sides to one of two types of organizations. The first is your basic turning traitor scenario. You leave one government, or city-state, or whatever for the opposing government, city-state, or similar. I call that a "treasonous side-change." Alternately, you could change from a government to a rebel force, a priesthood to a fallen priesthood, etc. I call that a "moral side-change." If the group is mostly comprised of side-changers, then it's a moral. If the group is mostly comprised of people who are not side-changers, it's treasonous. This disticntion is very important. In the real world, would you trust someone who was a traitor? If you yourself were not a traitor, you probably wouldn't ever truely trust them. In the same way, someone who treasonously changes sides will never be trusted. That's a consequence of his action.

Let's put all of that together. Let's say you are in a situation kind of like Chapter 4 of Exile II/Avernum 2: you are the agent of one country being invaded by another. Your commander has asked you to destroy a forward logistics base so that the enemy won't be able to advance. Now, you can take your time advancing on the logistics base. In this case, depending on how long it takes, the enemy will advance further and further, and you may be caught behind enemy lines. If you manage to destroy it quickly, you may come home covered in glory, and then have to work through the political intruige of those who envy your sucess. On the other hand, you may engineer a distraction for the enemy force, so soldiers from a nearby fort can destroy the logistics base. In that case, you may not get the same glory, but you instead go on to do other missions, and are in the front lines of the war. On the other hand, you may decide your country is being overrun, and you may as well join the winning side. Then you turn spy. You may even be able to return to your country having destroyed the logistics base, and done so quicker than otherwise possible, but now you are twice a traitor, and have to deal with your enemy's personal anger, as well all the political wrangling. Or maybe you became a traitor after you were captured, and then you are really not trusted, and, and, and.

I hope I have shown you ways in which you can present a non-linear story while keeping the player involved, and remember:
IC actions have IC consequences.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Article - bjlhct2 On Scenario Design pt 1: Linearity in Blades of Avernum
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #54
PoD, I agree with you as far as the scenarios we've seen. And a non-linear plot, if not executed very well is exactly what you describe: a disjointed melange of random events. However, if you work from the premise that IC actions hace IC consequences, then you can have non-linearity while still having a cohesive story. Do you have to help save the land you live in from the opressive armies invading it? No. Of course, when you find yourself behind enemy lines, don't complain, because it's all your own damn fault. Now, is that hugely different, and probably much more difficult, then had you been fighting for your homeland all along? Sure. But it's your fault.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
pay pal red alert in General
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #8
Actually, if you look at the code for the url in the email, it is usually something like <http://www.somesite.com/random/extension/w/ierd/ltrs/$7r4Ng3-41ph4-nUm3r1c-C0D3@ipa.ddr.ess.com/extentions>. You are really on the website with the IP address of ipa.ddr.ess.com, not the one with the URL of http://www.somesite.com. The @ shows that everything coming before that is just a log-in name.
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00
Archmage Ascension progress in Blades of Avernum Editor
Warrior
Member # 3610
Profile #2
Interesting concept, but very ambitious. I'm working on something similar called Academy Arcana, but not nearly as huge as what you describe. Good luck with it, but I'd lower m expectations. Even in A3, my singleton never achieved level 150 (I think he hit level 75 or so).
Posts: 129 | Registered: Tuesday, October 28 2003 08:00

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