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tiny change suggestion to bandaid fix ling

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Something I mentioned in discord after the recent announcement went live about the assorted antags and how the community felt about them, was basically employing the "Bioshock" method.

In Bioshock 1 and 2, you can choose to do things in both games that ultimately changed the game's ending and some events of the in-between based on your choices employed throughout the plot of either game.

I won't spoil the plot since that'd be pretty pointless.

Anyway, in both of the games the following formula was employed:

Get lot of power, but the consequences become very evident towards the end.

Get little bits of power gradually, sacrifice little but play at a progression disadvantage for awhile.

Ling as it stands is very one-dimensional. The only way you can gain progression as changeling is by killing people. Taking them out of the round irreversibly. And each kill is actually not that rewarding nor punishing at all. In fact, everyone is worth 2 genome points. It's almost worthless. It defeats the point of playing ling entirely. The only consequence involved is if you're unlucky enough to get caught draining someone while you're locked in place for 30 seconds doing it for a dead or alive person.

Ergo, let's switch the dynamic up a bit.

My idea is that lings can choose between two paths, or I guess a third:

1.) Loud but with more immediate consequences, both good and bad.

2.) Quiet, with very gradual, slower rate of progression but they maintain their discretion on station for much longer.

3.) Start quiet to gain the essentials and then ramp up to loud-style progression immediately.

Which then have the respective consequences:

1.) By being loud and absorbing people dry of their genomes, they gain a large sum of genome points to spend but inch closer to being forced into Horror Form, an irreversible, fast-regenerating creature that reflects the true nature of the shapeshifting being. It's a blessing and a curse, but it allows people who are interested in serial killing to finish off the round in a staccato of blood, gore and agony. It carries the risk of getting hashtag#PWNED and hashtag#CREMATED early, however, so a round can be pretty brief for a loud ling if they don't have the immediate skill to pull it off.

2.) By being discrete and taking gradual samples of people (with a minute cooldown at the least, and each person when sampled takes a bit of genetic damage but not enough to really kill them), the ling can gain a bit of initial traction by playing it slow and safe. They can opt to go loud later or complete other objectives to maintain their guise. Staying this route is slow, steady and not as reliable as killing people, but it's good for players who do not want to attract attention/want to avoid showing their hand too early and risk getting cremated because they got caught.

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Frankly, this doesn't seem like much of a "bandaid" fix in terms of changes. It's pretty much a complete rework of the succ'ing and genome point system (at least in the sense of horror form- being forced into it?..)

That said, I can certainly see how it's a bandaid fix not in the terms of what it reworks, but, the amount of thought put into it. It is not necessarily as bad change as much as an.. unfulfilling one. The systems are changed in function, but not in heart.

I would support this, except that I would much rather propose a larger-scale ground-up rework that addresses what I believe the problem of the game-mode to be: forcing the changeling to farm for genomes or essentially die (or play as a glorified tator). I have several ideas and have seen a number of discussions talking about such things.

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I used the term 'bandaid fix' in this context as I am pretty much predicting that any ground-up rework would take a very long time (as opposed to tweaks/minor rebalances which take substantially less time then overhauling an entire antag system) and I'm unsure if it'd be at the top of the dev team's priorities. Granted, vamp was overhauled by skull alone in a few months time and it turned out great. While it (ling) could be the same way, I have no idea if it's something they want to do again, as touching any antagonist and hammering at the foundation of it to unravel it from the ground up is bound to be time-consuming and potentially difficult, especially since changeling needs to be distinct in and of itself. Especially considering how much time that can be spent on brainstorming and scrapping the bad ideas.

Larger-scale reworks may also have the adverse effect of stripping away the original core identity of a concept in the first place. In this case, I'd rather a short-term fix (i.e., a bandaid) be applied until the very day that the dev team has a workable model that is superior to both the original and the bandaid-fixed original. It's a much safer bet and it still allows the game mode to be actively played to a workable capacity rather than leaving it broken and pointless for a very long time up until its rework.

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Good idea for a patch-fix to put in place while a bigger rework is in motion. At least it's a better idea than removing it completely IMO.

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This seems like an enjoyable addition/rework to the changeling gamemode, and I think that I would really enjoy playing during this time. I often don't like the issue where people are killed and then have to wait out the round for the next few hours, so this would be an awesome addition. This would really help fix the issues that ling has.

Absolutely a +1 from me!

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