Maikleeps

Game machanic changed in Wintermute

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Compared to the sandbox mode at early access the story mode has some different game mechanics. For example: it's possible to sleep even if not tired, skill mechanics not available ...

Does anyone know why this? 

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Skill progression exists, but it's not implemented the same way. For example, I'm pretty sure if you complete the survival skills quest for Jeremiah suddenly you're getting 10% bonus calories from harvested meat. If it was done exactly as in survival, players might be tempted to just grind them out early, which would trivialise the challenge of future episodes. This way the difficulty can be better managed. Right now starting fires is dead simple with loads of books and accelerant around. 

Being able to sleep when not tired is likely so players can regain condition. In survival mode it becomes an interesting challenge because your recovery can take a few days. In story mode it would probably just punish players who are already struggling. Story mode isn't necessarily trying to kill players. 

My money is on parasites and cabin fever to be introduced in future episodes. They're ways to constrain the player's options. Before you can do that you've got to make sure people understand the options before them. It isn't hard to think of narrative means to introduce them, either. 

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7 hours ago, LucidFugue said:

Skill progression exists, but it's not implemented the same way. For example, I'm pretty sure if you complete the survival skills quest for Jeremiah suddenly you're getting 10% bonus calories from harvested meat. If it was done exactly as in survival, players might be tempted to just grind them out early, which would trivialise the challenge of future episodes. This way the difficulty can be better managed. Right now starting fires is dead simple with loads of books and accelerant around. 

Being able to sleep when not tired is likely so players can regain condition. In survival mode it becomes an interesting challenge because your recovery can take a few days. In story mode it would probably just punish players who are already struggling. Story mode isn't necessarily trying to kill players. 

My money is on parasites and cabin fever to be introduced in future episodes. They're ways to constrain the player's options. Before you can do that you've got to make sure people understand the options before them. It isn't hard to think of narrative means to introduce them, either. 

You might be right. It's a resonable explanation. I was just surprised as Hinterland put a good effort to balance cabin fever or intestinal parasites or stop the exploit "sleeping when not tired". "Passing time" (playing cards) is still available too. It's not necessary right now.

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9 hours ago, LucidFugue said:

My money is on parasites and cabin fever to be introduced in future episodes. They're ways to constrain the player's options. Before you can do that you've got to make sure people understand the options before them. It isn't hard to think of narrative means to introduce them, either. 

I wouldn't doubt it either. The story mode has been teaching everything to us all along. I can't even craft fishing tackle yet.

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7 hours ago, SnowWalker said:

I can't even craft fishing tackle yet.

Which I found really strange, considering that we can craft both the hook and the line.

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10 hours ago, SnowWalker said:

I wouldn't doubt it either. The story mode has been teaching everything to us all along. I can't even craft fishing tackle yet.

I was thinking about this though...if predator meat and parasites don't bother Will now...why should it affect him later on? That really doesn't make sense.

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20 hours ago, RossBondReturns said:

Just crafted my my first fishing tackle in Episode 2. It unlocks if you will at a specific point.

Oh, so that's the case? I'm planning to try and finish episode 2 tonight. But I still think it is strange to be able to craft the hook and the line and not be able to knot them together (which intuitively seems easier than the other two). Maybe all the three should become available at the same point.

EDIT: actually I'm able to craft fishing tackles. I was looking for it in the wrong tab... my bad.

17 hours ago, SnowWalker said:

I was thinking about this though...if predator meat and parasites don't bother Will now...why should it affect him later on? That really doesn't make sense.

Also thinking intuitively here, it wouldn't make any sense. It would be like we could never get Influenza until we discover such a disease exists.

Edited by slackhideo
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On predator meat - what if from a story perspective Will has always been at risk of contracting parasites but wasn't aware of it until a certain point where he or someone else is scripted to get sick from it. After that point, the mechanic is introduced properly. Until that point, it's just assumed he's been getting lucky. 

 

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19 hours ago, SnowWalker said:

The story mode has been teaching everything to us all along. I can't even craft fishing tackle yet.

Gee, thanks.. now I have a picture in my head that the entire first 5 episodes are actually going to be one huge extended tutorial & skilling up fest, before the story proper kicks off in Season 2..  

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1 minute ago, JAFO said:

Gee, thanks.. now I have a picture in my head that the entire first 5 episodes are actually going to be one huge extended tutorial & skilling up fest, before the story proper kicks off in Season 2..  

Yeah but you also don't get skills knowledge for free. You have to do the missions and/or gain more trust with npc's before you gain knowledge. I've gained a bunch of trust with Trapper but still can't craft them but I've found two fishing tackle now that it's not going to do me any good though. Not planning on heading back to the huts anytime soon. Later maybe, idk?

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8 hours ago, LucidFugue said:

On predator meat - what if from a story perspective Will has always been at risk of contracting parasites but wasn't aware of it until a certain point where he or someone else is scripted to get sick from it. After that point, the mechanic is introduced properly. Until that point, it's just assumed he's been getting lucky. 

 

Could be. I'm sure I remember eating wolf meat in Stalker and getting away with it most of the time.

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7 minutes ago, SnowWalker said:

Yeah but you also don't get skills knowledge for free. You have to do the missions and/or gain more trust with npc's before you gain knowledge.

That's what I meant by "skilling up fest".. it's just a different kind of grinding. As I read more and more about Wintermute on these forums (for the most part trying to avoid spoilers for things I haven't gotten to yet), I'm more and more inclined to suspect that the first 5 episodes are going to really be about skill grinding, as you work your way along a plot-line that you're not permitted to deviate from by more than a tiny amount.

Edited by JAFO

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13 minutes ago, JAFO said:

as you work your way along a plot-line that you're not permitted to deviate from by more than a tiny amount.

You can deviate all you like. Right now I'm supposed to go and do a specific thing for story mode, but I'm taking my time getting there and exploring first. When I do get the objective done and then go back to where the objectives starting point was, the next objective will trigger. I will then get to the next one when I feel like it and when I feel like progressing. I don't know what happened to that other guy but going to the farm first in eps 1 didn't screw up my progression in the story. I just think he screwed it by jumping down that waterfall which I could see was way, too high to try to jump down. I don't know why he didn't just go down the farm road instead? The world ends at that waterfall, there's nothing over there for us. It's not like the waterfalls in PV. It's way too high to go down there.

Edited by SnowWalker

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1 hour ago, SnowWalker said:

You can deviate all you like. Right now I'm supposed to go and do a specific thing for story mode, but I'm taking my time getting there and exploring first. When I do get the objective done and then go back to where the objectives starting point was, the next objective will trigger.

Again, that's exactly what I'm getting at.. GM's fire at one point has 10 minutes left.. you're told to hurry up and gather firewood for her. But if you spend days pottering around at the task, or not even starting it until you've been all over the map first, nothing bad happens to GM. She should have frozen to death, leaving you up a creek without a paddle, or forced to muddle through without her help.  And if there are no consequences to deviating, then you're not really deviating, are you?

Same with Jeremiah. You get assigned a task that's essentially about saving his life. But even if you take forever to get the job done, he's still alive when you finally do. And if you should happen, due to your own initiative and forward thinking, to already have the required items, you aren't permitted to use them! Instead, you have to go questing across half the map for crap you already have in your backpack. Initiative is effectively being punished.

You can take your own sweet time about things, sure, but you can't deviate from the plot.  It will always be there waiting for you, even when it shouldn't be.

I had/have high hopes for this game.. but the massively linear thinking in the story to date, and the lack of imagination that it hints at, are not encouraging..

Thankfully, there's always Survivor Mode..

Edited by JAFO
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22 minutes ago, JAFO said:

You can take your own sweet time about things, sure, but you can't deviate from the plot.  It will always be there waiting for you, even when it shouldn't be.

I see what you're getting at. Unfortunately that's the way it is for most games. Like in FO4, you can just turn off objectives till you want to do them and if it's a settlement that you have to help and if you fail to help them, it usually pops up again later so you can give it another go. I ruined my shard the first time in Milton so I restarted. The second time I gathered all her food and fuel before I even went to see her. Everything after that is not time sensitive, that I could tell. But I know what you mean, she should have been dead by the time I got there, though it didn't take me too long. The story doesn't tell when you get there to run to help some npc though and only tells you to follow the road, so how do we know there's someone running out of wood if we don't find them right away anyway?

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2 minutes ago, SnowWalker said:

But I know what you mean, she should have been dead by the time I got there, though it didn't take me too long. The story doesn't tell when you get there to run to help some npc though and only tells you to follow the road, so how do we know there's someone running out of wood if we don't find them right away anyway?

That I could handle.. regardless of when exactly you arrived, you just happened to turn up in the nick of time.. that's an acceptable premise. But once you're told you need to do something, or else bad shit could happen, then, by god, let bad shit happen if you fail to do so in a timely manner. In Wintermute, failure isn't being punished, yet (in the case of Jeremiah) taking initiative is.

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1 minute ago, JAFO said:

That I could handle.. regardless of when exactly you arrived, you just happened to turn up in the nick of time.. that's an acceptable premise. But once you're told you need to do something, or else bad shit could happen, then, by god, let bad shit happen if you fail to do so in a timely manner. In Wintermute, failure isn't being punished, yet (in the case of Jeremiah) taking initiative is.

Very true, but I really don't remember her telling me that I had to hurry to get the wood and I never noticed she had a time on the fire until much later, lol. But if there is a time sensitive element then you should get that big 'YOU FAILED' notification and then the game cuts out and throws you back to your last checkpoint or save. Or you can progress, but without and rewards you might have gotten.

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1 minute ago, SnowWalker said:

But if there is a time sensitive element then you should get that big 'YOU FAILED' notification and then the game cuts out and throws you back to your last checkpoint or save.

This is the thing.. it should be a time-sensitive element.. but it isn't.

1 minute ago, SnowWalker said:

Or you can progress, but without and rewards you might have gotten.

And again, this is how it should work, but it doesn't.

 

Linear thinking at its magnificent, inflexible best. Even most linear-story progression games allow at least two possible outcomes, at sensible points. But not this one. In a game whose very foundation has been built on requiring flexibility, adaptiveness and the ability to plan ahead, it's a disappointing development.

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21 minutes ago, JAFO said:

This is the thing.. it should be a time-sensitive element.. but it isn't.

And again, this is how it should work, but it doesn't.

 

Linear thinking at its magnificent, inflexible best. Even most linear-story progression games allow at least two possible outcomes, at sensible points. But not this one. In a game whose very foundation has been built on requiring flexibility, adaptiveness and the ability to plan ahead, it's a disappointing development.

I wonder what GamerNate will think about it, if you know whom he is? He's on a month long holiday and wasn't able to play it yet but he loves TLD because of what you've just said and refuses to play linear games. Even the wolves are too easy, if you ask me. I've just made it all the way to somewhere tonight, which was supposed to be difficult. Made it past all the wolves except one who I screwed up and forgot to reload the flare gun and so he got me :S :D but after that he left me alone. I just walked away with a lit torch and never saw him or another one again till I found the place and by then it was night. I've quit for tonight now though. Too tired now for what I think's to come next. Not sure what though. I've tried to stay blind through it all too but every now and again you read something someone has spoiled for you.

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10 minutes ago, SnowWalker said:

I wonder what GamerNate will think about it, if you know whom he is?

I know of him, but haven't really watched him..  I suspect I can predict his reaction, though, based on what you've told me.

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13 minutes ago, SnowWalker said:

Even the wolves are too easy, if you ask me. I've just made it all the way to somewhere tonight, which was supposed to be difficult. Made it past all the wolves except one who I screwed up and forgot to reload the flare gun and so he got me

Yep.. because they're scripted events, and they're too constrained in their locales.. they're not permitted to follow their normal wolf behaviours and paths.

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