Update: Untitled

General chat about the Britain Knights (UO) system.
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Posts: 27
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2022 8:56 am

Update: Untitled

Post by UltimateUppercut »

I'm still working on making something with the BK (Britain Knights) Server.

As I've said before, much of what I've been working on is boring back end data, player quest tracking variables... blah blah blah. Even I got a little bored working on that stuff, so this weekend I started on some of the combat to keep me motivated.
Screenshot from 2022-09-19 21-51-28.png
Screenshot from 2022-09-19 21-51-28.png (134.84 KiB) Viewed 181 times
I've added a new type of Spellbook that will cast a singular spell much like a weapon does. It's not final, but it was something new that I wanted to add. I'm still tweaking on how they work, but it's fun to run around blasting things with them. I've got single target and AOE versions working, and even versions that heal AOE as well.

I've done some tinkering with the Magical property on items and am slowly adding new magical effects to gear. I'd like to make it so that you can have shields that cast spells on hit, or reflect spells, etc. Early versions of this are already working for base armors. Since nearly everything has the Magical property, it opens up a lot of possibilities. I also appreciate how much the code base was cleaned up! It's been much easier to implement things now that I don't have to analyze so much conflicting code from different cores. I've got arcane gems set up to use on Magical items to recharge them much like Arcane Clothing has been used in the past. I may change this yet.

I've got the Quest Map marking all of the dungeons as you find them. Next will be towns, and then Point's of Interest. I'm still working on a system where you can overhear things spoken at Taverns and Inns to learn about interesting things on the map, but I really like that idea. I'll have to use spawners in an interesting way, but I can make these things "manually" so that you can prompt people to talk about specific subjects. But I still have a ton of work to do on the quest system... I'll get there eventually.

I'm still learning a lot about the differences of this server, but things are moving along again now that I'm up and running on a new computer. Much of what I'm doing will probably change with internal testing, but I think it's worth it to start posting about this more for those who were looking for something based on BK. This is slowly becoming it's own thing, bit by bit.
Posts: 27
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2022 8:56 am

Re: Update: Untitled

Post by UltimateUppercut »

Screenshot from 2022-09-23 12-08-10.png
Screenshot from 2022-09-23 12-08-10.png (434.91 KiB) Viewed 107 times
Things I've been able to add today.

Weapon Criticals:
The higher your weapon skill (with a random seed) you can have a chance to hit your foes with a mighty blow. The damage is currently based on Tactics skill or Concentration, depending on weapon type.
This will more than likely change, but it's working for the moment. I'd like to eventually implement a mastery system that will also effect this.

I've also implemented the increased HP method that R&R recently introduced (Thanks Djeryv!) since I had planned on doing that anyway for the changes in combat.

As I go along here, I'm doing my best to address the things that bother me in UO in general. I'm interested in everyone's thoughts on Skillgain.

One of the things that always got to me was that nearly every server I played on was the rush to GM everything. Some gave you skill balls, some jacked up the skill gain so fast you may as well have started with GM skill. Each shard had it's own method to address this rush. Often I'd log into a new shard to listen to the all too familiar cacophony of clinging metal against a training dummy multiplied by the dozens of players beating the proverbial "dead horse" in their efforts to GM their weapon skill just so they could "play the game". Why does every UO player feel like you have to GM nearly all of your skills to start playing?

The simple answer is, that your character just isn't effective against anything until you reach a higher skill level. Swords frequently miss, spells fizzle too often, limited access to abilities etc... No one wants to deal with that failure in battle and risk things needlessly. I get it. What I don't get is why the answer to this has been the same for decades. Just increase skill gain speed! No worries! BLEH.

I wan't to believe that part of your characters journey is the sense of accomplishment you get completing your personal goals. For many years my friends and I min/maxed our characters to accomplish the impossible. We'd make specialized characters to take out Bosses, PVP, solo Champ Spawns. In most cases, those characters were 7xGM'd in a couple of days. I believe that this is why we would play UO intensely for a few weeks or months, and then not touch it for a year. Once we reached GM in everything and completed our goals... that character stopped growing. They were "done" in a sense, and we'd either make something new, (and be done with it in a week) or stop playing.

A friend of mine made a comment to me the other day about reaching "Legendary" skill in UO. Nearly everyone is a Grand master, and hundreds are of Legendary skill level across any shard. I think back to the original Ultima games and the only legends in those worlds were a handful of NPC's and your character. In Ultima lore, these characters practiced combat for decades to reach that level of accolade. It wasn't like Dupre picked up a sword on Monday and was a Grand Master by the weekend.

Reaching those heights should take some investment. Not just time, but actually completing a task with skill. I've spoken with people who have had the same D&D character for YEARS. And while it's not really a direct comparison, that character holds significant meaning to those people. They never stopped working on that character. Playing that character was just as fun at level 1, as it is at level 12. I'd like to strive to something similar to that with this shard.

So, I'm going to try to address this problem in the following ways:
1. Lower skill levels are now WAY more effective. This will take some time to balance, but in summary 50 skill in something will give you access to what you would have normally at GM. You will be able to perform all actions, but they will be less effective than before. This takes away that need to GM skills to be effective in combat. You'll be consistently hitting things and fizzling less much sooner. 25 skill will let you get out into the world and start adventuring without the need for macroing looming over your head. Continued practice will increase the effectiveness of skills as always, but you shouldn't be worried about checking on them all the time. Just go out and have fun!
2. Skill gain will slow down as it increases. You'll gain up to 30 skill at the rate you are all used to. Getting to 50 will take some time, but not months. Getting past 50 will start to take some investment though. This means training something to 50 from a vendor will instantly make you useful in a skill. (This does not effect Crafting skills, those remain unchanged, for the moment anyway).
3. Monster balance will be altered as a result. Back in the 90's it took multiple people to take down an Ogre Lord. It was a big deal. I wan't to get back to that, and since this shard was built with a pre-AOS focus, it'll be easier to make those changes. Gather your friends if you want to adventure into more dangerous areas! Monsters will have higher HP than usual, and while this slows down combat a little bit, it'll give you more chances to improve your skills over time. Enemy difficulty will not be based on how quickly they poison you to prevent healing, or how high their Magery is. I want to expand the ways that combat can be made more interesting beyond having big numbers.

This is still a pretty rough idea. I've implemented some of this already, and I know it will take some time to balance and tweak it. Does anyone have any thoughts on addressing this issue in the ways that I've described?
Posts: 27
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2022 8:56 am

Re: Update: Untitled

Post by UltimateUppercut »

To finish off the evening, I've finally gotten the beginnings of the quest system working. Players can speak to NPC's in town and learn keywords that will mark interesting locations on their quest map. I've only got one working so far, but once I get that one finished up, the rest will be a breeze. Currently a Barkeep in Trinsic is hinting that I be careful if I head to the western mountain range...

I also continued to dabble with combat features. I've made shields that cast spells on block, but I may limit what spells can proc off of them. Magic Reflection worked like a charm, but other targetable spells did not feel right. Having a targeting cursor constantly popping up was a bit annoying. So I may just keep those simple.

Potions now can quench your thirst a bit, since you'll most likely be using them at some point anyway. I did a ton more today, but these posts today were the high points.
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