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Antagonist rework 2.0


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This is a continuation of,

which I personally gave up on after the immediate feedback. This is hopefully a more level-headed alternative to it that could shake up four separate gamemodes for the better.

The premise this time is different : changing roundtypes, keeping current possibilities and breaking gameplay repetition by permitting more freedom in special roles while not making the antagonists any more mechanically powerful than they already are.

Starting from the beginning, I am still sold on the idea of changing the name of "antagonists." I will further explain my reasoning this time around though. To antagonize you expect conflict constantly, and it's the primary excuse people fall back on when complaining about antagonists not driving a story. They're inclined, and pressured into doing the same thing every round because they're literally named antagonists. Their goal, by name, is to serve as a conflicting force to the crew, and I'll be honest when I say the term "peace antagonist" has gotten to the point of annoyance for me. There is a difference between a bad antagonist and a peaceful antagonist, and conflict is not the entire driving force of this server. The repetition every round of this conflict is bound to cause boredom because you're just doing and expecting the same stuff back and forth and many complain that nothing different happens - I believe it's because of this.

On that, there is the freedom of choice when deciding what you do as an antagonist we have. What's the point of having the freedom to play something peaceful if you're contradicting the very thing you're labelled? That's the line of thought for new players trying antagonist I feel, and exactly why we should rename it to something more broad. Event characters, special roles, whatever, so long as they aren't destined to a specific role despite having the freedom to choose whatever they want.

Moving on though is something similar in concept to the last suggestion but not exactly the same. This, of course, is changing non-crew antagonists to be merged and more modular in their selection. An example of what I mean is merging ninja/wizard and permitting people to select one or the other through vendors in an out-of-character preparation area. In this preparation area, gear for either antagonist (or even new ones we might decide to add onto this gamemode) could be obtained using a limited amount of points granted at roundstart to the antagonist(s). Picking a whole kit would consume all their points, for example, and leave them in no grander state than what is currently available to wizards or ninjas.

Merging raider and merc is a more complicated case because raider is very different from merc in the sense that you could start with garbage or amazing gear. This is a big thing the last suggestion made me realize. It's random chance what you're given, which is part of the fun of the gamemode. This would be best to remain the same, while merc is introduced to the same system that ninja/wizard would have, except in a sense more cohesive for an entire team.

A proposal originally was permitting access to what was originally event-specific stuff, but some concerns with that were along the lines of how stupidly overpowered some of that gear is. For example, while the crimson hardsuit is really, really strong, it's nowheres near breacher levels of protection, and you would never want to give a merc team a breacher at roundstart. It'd get abused very easily. At the same time, less powerful gear, such as the techno-conglomerate hardsuit, the Sol voidsuits (which were recently added and have equal stats to the merc voidsuit,) and a myriad of our absolutely ridiculous amount of guns could be utilized in team-wide purchases or individual purchases for team members. The sky's the limit for the possibilities here, and I personally have a reserve of lore-friendly sprites that could be utilized for it, like Eridani PMC voidsuits, Elyran uniforms, pirate gear, etc. Also, I would absolutely be willing to sprite new things for solo non-crew antagonists and group non-crew antagonists.

The merc shuttle should be emptied of syndicate specific gear, moved into the base in case folks decide to use it. Its floors should be black instead of a murderous red and bombs etc would also be in the base as well. In short, don't restrict just being normal syndicate mercenaries from happening any less than it normally does, but don't make it the sole thing to do without ahelping.

For what they could be named as gamemodes, "solo noncrew" and "group noncrew" don't really fit well with the other gamemode names but I'm not sure what else to name them. "Custom solo" and "custom group" maybe?

This doesn't brush over the other gamemodes because honestly they don't need anything beyond number tweaks and ability swaps to be effective at what they are. However, mercenary as it stands is a very, very well equipped antagonizing force consisting purely of syndies. Very often they're posing as someone else despite being in tomato red suits. It doesn't add anything to the challenge, either, since you can easily ahelp for the gear necessary to pose as them, or utilize chameleon kits if armor isn't applicable. Ninja and wizard have no real reason to be independent from one another, as while they're fundamentally different antagonists with very different capabilities, they are still just singular people with super powerful toolsets.

For visitors, this would mean that there would be two non-crew solo antagonists. Either they could be restricted from picking two of the same kit exactly, or have the ability to pick normally - I'm not sure what's best. Two ninjas sounds cool on paper to me but could be atrocious in game for all I know.

For infiltration, the ninja spawns as a solo non-crew antagonist.

For conflux and its wizard, see above.

For crossfire, good riddance nothing changes besides the mercs spawning in their new OOC prep I guess.

For siege, see above.

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So in a nutshell is this creating a staging area where the "antags" spawn in to gear up to be whatever they want or will each "antag" still be the ones we currently vote for but have a new set up area?

Edited by Zundy
Typos
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16 minutes ago, Zundy said:

So in a nutshell is this creating a staging area where the "antags" spawn in to gear up the be whatever they want or will each "antag" still be the ones we currently vote for but have a set up area?

I don't follow

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I honestly like this. Antagonists have always been a conundrum, perhaps a measure to help would be relabeling them. An emphasis that the core concept behind “antags” for Aurora does not have to be mutual to other servers. 

Visitor roles could do better if the player was given a choice between either or as well. 

Wizards could also do better with a wider variety of attire. Perhaps a chameleon kit sort of thing that has a number of options which when a person is satisfied with, they can lock it in. 

As for the other outsider group antagonists, especially for mercenary, they could have an item that dispenses an assortment of items. Instead of having to map everything into a room something akin to the Arma 3 armory boxes could be made. 

Maybe have them pick a shuttle design to pick from? I think there’s something similar implemented in other servers.

Edited by Aboshedab
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Kyres has given me antagonist advice as well as their personal opinions about typical antagonist behavior and it's untold effects on many rounds. From a newer member's perspective I could immediately tell they are passionate and experienced in the balance of gameplay as well as the needs of the community in regard to antagonist roles. In their frustrations, they had mused about this proposal to me and reading through this now only reinforces my appreciation of their dedication and knowledge, but enough guzzling...

Again, from my perspective, it's difficult to balance the lack of knowledge of the game along with the lore and RP aspects this server strives to achieve. Much of the mechanics of the game are the responsibility of the individual to discover and practice and this simply isn't efficient in an RP environment. Additionally, many varied individuals with different ideas of what this game is and what they think is clever or fun walk into this server without a clear understanding of what is expected of them. While we can't sand down every aspect as the ambiguous open-ended nature of player creativity is something we wish to preserve, Kyres' refinement here would help clarify the role of what we currently refer to as an antagonist as well as offer a step towards a better foundation for all. I can't speak on behalf of more seasoned players that can craft a circuit that teleports them Merc base, or those that can craft stealth rigs before the first announcement, but for what it's worth I support this movement and regardless of it moving forward, I enjoy belonging to a community so committed to the betterment of their server.

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So your saying make antags have a OOC CM setup area? Sounds fun.

 

One thing I must say is that other codebases have various other antagonists that could be fun, such as Polaris' s Technomancer, or Eris's Hivemind.

 

Also keep in mind that people may still want to have Crossfire.

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+1
Yes please! More power for customization, less generic red voidsuits!

Personally, for group non-crew types, I'd be settled with a OOC spawn area, which gives you the choice between multiple docks (and equipment/guns within). (Sol Marine type docks, PMC type docks, Vox type docks, syndie type docks that contain uplinks, etc.). Then some sort of chameleon kit-esque equipment selection that kind of 'locks in' once you leave the dock for the first time, (and also actually has that clothings stats, like, armor.)

Solo non-crew, do pretty much the same thing, and let them select between mundane and magic, and make silly wizard robes act like chameleon kits.

For solo crews, give them a point-based menu for type selection, Like, a OOC uplink for selecting antag powers.. Maybe a rev/group type antag with vamp dominate? A somehow slightly weaker vampire with a weak (Less TC) traitor uplink? A ling that gives up horror form/armblade for more passive effects, say, having a speed/strength drug they can ingest at will. Maybe different types of uplinks with different focuses?

Whatever happens, we need to ensure that people follow the gimmick that was agreed on in AOOC + arrange. Let's not let this turn into a 'pick the most powerful setup' kind of deal. This is for varied antag RP.

Great suggestion, this is the kind of antag rework we need! andwillnevergetbecauseitwouldbeinsanelyhardtocode

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I generally approve of ideas like this. But I do have one major question.

Specifically concerning group antags. If we enable the selection of specific themes. How do we make the selection of a uniform theme for that group work out? Like, it's fine and cool that we get to pick their style, but if we allow this at an individual level, then, IMO, group antags will suffer immensely. Even without this ability, Raiders and Mercs have a long history of the antagonists just not being able to agree on a theme or an approach from time to time, and this has caused issues. So giving even more ways to cause discord between the team members is bound to exacerbate the issue.

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27 minutes ago, Skull132 said:

I generally approve of ideas like this. But I do have one major question.

Specifically concerning group antags. If we enable the selection of specific themes. How do we make the selection of a uniform theme for that group work out? Like, it's fine and cool that we get to pick their style, but if we allow this at an individual level, then, IMO, group antags will suffer immensely. Even without this ability, Raiders and Mercs have a long history of the antagonists just not being able to agree on a theme or an approach from time to time, and this has caused issues. So giving even more ways to cause discord between the team members is bound to exacerbate the issue.

Maybe themed loadouts could have the theme-related gear (like voidsuits/uniforms/gear) need to be purchased by utilizing all the available points to the group, so that it requires an agreement in the first place from everyone to run a gimmick along those lines? Otherwise, the normal syndicate gear is all that is available on an individual basis.

Edited by kyres1
spewwing ewwow .w<
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1 minute ago, kyres1 said:

Maybe themed loadouts could have the theme-related gear (like voidsuits/uniforms/gear) would need to be purchased by utilizing all the available points to the group, so that it requires an agreement in the first place from everyone to run a gimmick along those lines? Otherwise, the normal syndicate gear is all that is available on an individual basis. 

Doesn't fully address the issue, simply shifts it. The core issue is that there is no mechanic nor sure fire way to get an agreement. So saying that there is one that'll be made is a non-answer. IMO some sure fire way of ensuring a theme is picked for the team must exist. Possibilities include:

  • Mechanical voting amongst team members.
  • Designating a team leader who has the final say.
  • Randomly picking from a pool.
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I like two of those three ideas.

1 minute ago, Skull132 said:

Mechanical voting amongst team members. 

Do you mean like a voting screen available at roundstart that they are forced to vote with before they're able to begin selection of stuff, and it's on a timer so they're forced to discuss while voting and are able to switch their votes?

2 minutes ago, Skull132 said:

Designating a team leader who has the final say. 

This feels like there'd be a lot of very, very bad arguing and awful play centered around hogging the leader roles.

2 minutes ago, Skull132 said:

Randomly picking from a pool. 

Do you mean randomly picking a theme from a pool? Because this sounds wonderful too, though the ability to pick and choose is always superior in my mind.

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  • 1 month later...
On 19/05/2019 at 12:09, Skull132 said:

Designating a team leader who has the final say. 

Current that's a RNG role. Mercenary 'Leader' just means you know the nuke code. Could be a seperate role, maybe? Like if you want to actual try and plan and run stuff, you turn on "Group Coordinator", rather than 'Group Member". Leader suggests authority, but it ought to just be about trying to organize things, and not really an IC "I'm in charge" role.

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  • 2 months later...

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