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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2009 4:08 pm 
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Game design aside, Dwarf Fortress got me thinking about some scenarios that games ought to be able to replicate just because it seems like it would be cool.

My favorite has always been "grandfather's sword". The evil horde is upon the town and shit's about to get serious. It gets extra serious when the main character's grandfather gets his sword down off the wall, where it sat for the last 15 years. That sword is famous from the Goblin Wars and every man and beast within a hundred miles recognizes it and fears it.

LOTR (the books) liked this concept a lot. Goblins hated Gandalf's sword, not because it had particular magical abilities for killing goblins but because it had killed so many of them over so many centuries that they now had a genetic fear of that sword. Or Aragorn had his sword, "the sword that was broken", which broke when striking the ring off of Sauron's hand, but was reforged, and everyone who sees that sword knows that Aragorn is the rightful owner and the rightful heir to the throne.


I think it would be interesting if players could become skilled not just with "swords" but with a particular sword, if they manage to hold onto it for a long time. That is, you die, you drop your sword, the enemy claims it, scraps it, whatever, but if you play carefully and keep the same sword for a long time, you'll start to become ridiculously good with it. At some point the sword itself will become famous and cast its own aura and maybe even retains its identity if passed to another hand e.g., perhaps a captured famous sword boosts the owner and his allies but it might also boost the previous owner and HIS allies when attacking the new owner ("He stole Excalibur! Lets kick his ass!") Destroying a famous sword might have lingering consequences as well...


I suppose I am generally thinking of a way for a game world to generate relics, not because the designer came in and said, "Here, this is a relic" but because it was the actual sword held by the hand that killed 150 people in a row and conquered 15 castles.


Perhaps a simple way to represent this is if everything in the game has XP. Your sword has XP. Your hat has XP. The castle itself has XP. You can't see it, but it's there.

If it gets dropped or changes hands, it goes back to 0 XP. If it reaches some threshold, though, it becomes a Relic, and grants bonuses for the people who are on its side. So yes, if you run around in your pajama bottoms and those are the only pants you ever wear and you go through a lot of fights without dying or losing your pants, then you'll end up with the Pajama Bottoms of Invincibility, Aura: +5 morale/sec to friendlies, -5 morale/sec to enemies, etc. Enemies see you and say, "Oh shit! It's the Pajama Bottoms of Invincibility! Nobody has ever killed him while he's wearing those!"


Silly, but I like it. Fantasy books all have this sort of thing. Fantasy CRPGs sometimes do it, but it's canned. "This is a relic." Fantasy MMORPGs have an interesting opportunity to actually allow for the creation of these relics, through player interaction in the game world.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2009 4:23 pm 
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If you're talking MMORPGS, I don't think you can go wrong imitating Tolkien.

You just have to be careful with the names:
Beren's knife Angrist
Anglachel later known as Gurthang the sword of Turin Turambar ("I will slay thee")
Glamdring
Narsil/Anduril
.
.
Dustie's uber sword of omgwtf-pwnage (ok, maybe we shouldn't let players name them)

Anyway, I like the general idea, give items a history, name, story, and some power.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2009 5:14 pm 
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This would be a great idea in the absence of pvp where such items might be overpowered.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2009 5:30 pm 
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it would be hard to find a balance between "attainable in only 18-36 months, which means that you should be able to find a few dozen in the cellar or attic from your forefathers, who easily had time to make 6-7 epic items each over their entire careers" and "only reasonably powerful after years of play, so really unless you quest for one of the canned ones you can forget ever seeing one yourself".

not to mention the extra hurdle this would present for people who are joining the game late.

and, of course, the "my green level 50 sword is better than your epic level 4 sword will ever be" problem.

-ken

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2009 6:58 pm 
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They probably all borrow from some of the Samurai culture, where the sword was their soul. There are swords that were so well made they are still in existence nearly 1000 years later. Remember Masamune the best sword from Final Fantasy? He was a swordsmith in Japan in 1200 AD.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masamune

The swords were handed down thru families for generations. New ones were often made to become symbols of protection (protect new child/home etc).

I think it would work well for a particular class. I like when classes are very district and interesting classes or talent trees.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:32 pm 
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Thar sounded alot like my rusty two hander that to this day is lying in the sewers below Qeynos with the original Doophus the Ogre.


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