A few ideas

I'm not sure if I'm there first to bring it up but I'd like a few things done with schools. An ally system would be nice being able to team up with other schools and such, maybe even through in some rival schools to have a good old fashion kung fu off (maybe bonus xp or something for fighting rivals and co hoping with allies).

Next with schools should be the option, as the mentor, to choose who is allowed in your dojo. Now I'm not saying invite only schools, though that could be an option. I'm saying if there happens to be a few bad apples in your school hurting your reputation that you can remove them from the school. I know there might be some dishonorable mentors who will abuse this power but that's why the copy deck ability exists already.

Speaking of reputation I feel like there should be some sort of system like that in the game to sort the honorable fighters from the street thugs. Perhaps an in game reporting system after every match to set value to your opponent. Maybe some sort of reward for either side of the spectrum. Maybe even go as far as to have separate matchmaking to keep the dishonorable from fighting others, just a vague thought.

I believe my final thought is a far out there idea about schools but I think it's in the realm of possibility. I think if a player wants to take on a school, be it a rival or a top school, they should storm their dojo. A new PVE mode, but with NPCs with the schools deck and outfits of different students. The more students a school has maybe the higher the dojo tower is, thinking like Mortal Kombat style tower. Maybe the school who is being attacked gets notified and has the option to tag in as a mini boss in a little waiting room between floors.

That's all my suggestions, for now at least. I say so much because I really do like this game a lot and want to see it grow higher and higher. I look forward to seeing promising Prospects and Absolvers in the ring of battle!


  • Hi Skarekrow19, your idea overlaps with one of mine from last fall that I have been contemplating. With the following constraints in mind, let's discuss how this could be implemented.

    Constraint one, no new map or game asset content. That is no new animations, weapons, maps, textures, items, should be required. This will help to minimize the implementation cost and scope.

    Constraint two, no new menu interaction required to initiate the dojo session. That is players should not have to open the menu to start a dojo session. This is a design requirement to assure player interaction is fluid and natural to the users. This also assures that players travel through the game looking for others to engage.

    Constraint three, the narrative for the interaction should be straightforward and intuitive to all players. That is it should start with knocking on a door or some such simple thing all players can understand clearly. For example, my suggestion from last fall used the Meditation practice mode as the dojo space itself. Wherein if players see someone in meditation they can interact with them by 'knocking on their mental door' so to speak.

    Constraint three, the interaction to initiate a dojo session must afford both players complete agency. That is both players must consent to the contest or no contest occurs. This is to avoid the pain of matching up against people or schools you have no interest fighting. This also prevents players from abusing other players by 'griefing' them.

    If you didn't notice these are my main issues with how all Combat Trials work today. All of them break the game narrative in a jarring way and therefore takeaway from the immersion of the experience. The more immersed the players the more the adventure aspect of the game will unfold positively for them. Likewise, the existing initiate a fight system lends itself to players 'griefing' each other and does not afford both players full agency or consent. Similarly, 1x1 combat trials seriously needs a 'leave fight' so that you can stop fighting someone you don't enjoy fighting. If someone is a spammy jerk I don't want to give them any credit for the deck they built. So as a player I need the agency to end it cleanly. In this way the player base can police itself. Please bear in mind that leaving a fight should grant NO rewards to either player. Otherwise the players cannot use it to discourage poor game play sportsmanship.

    So those are the constraints I have in mind for the remainder of the discussion. I'll leave them her as a separate post so that we can refer to them later easily. (I'll be CnP'n this diatribe in the future. :wink: )
  • Now on to how to implement each idea. However, to do that we need to identify each idea succinctly. It will help a lot for discussion below. In order they seem to be...

    Idea A - School Alliances
    Idea B - School Membership Controls
    Idea C - School Reputation Stats
    Idea D - School Dojo Contests

    Please let me know if that sums it up appropriately for you. Now on to the 'how'...

    ok... this got really long so I have to break it up on the forum.
  • School Alliances - I'm going to skip this one. The concept sounds nice but I struggle with how to use it in game today and follow the constraints. I suspect you could refine 3x3 to implement this in some way, but I'm not sure that would accomplish your goal. Let's table it for now so as to not get too distracted by it. We WILL come back to it as it stays on the table for discussion later.
  • edited February 2019
    School Membership Controls - Kicking out a player means you also need to block them from future membership. So maybe this one is simple. By it's nature this one is a menu item change since there is no user interaction narrative that would be worth the effort. So we will forgo the menu constraint in this one case.

    Add an Expel Student option to the Student list. This kicks the student from the school and bans them from joining later. They stay in the list as Expelled and cannot join the school. This will also require a 'Readmit' button so that if they earn your respect later you can remove the ban.
  • edited February 2019
    School Reputation Stats - This one is also entirely state-full so it requires no new game assets and has no direct interaction narrative. Alas, how to implement that ranking though?

    First, allow players to vote up or down on any school they encounter. Players get one vote per school. Players may change their vote to up or down at a later date to account for changes in the school or it's members.

    We need to track this without an explicit menu so that it happens passively. How about this...

    Add the 'Stop Combat Trial' option I mentioned above. (People simply quit out today, but that's really inefficient for the game engine.) If the players complete a combat trial against an opponent school, regardless of winner, vote up BOTH schools. If a Combat Trial is stopped vote down BOTH schools.

    This would implement a direct relationship between Combat Trial sportsmanship and School Reputation. Note that because both Schools take a reputation ding, this helps to discourage ending fights prematurely. Also note that one vote per player has a finite limit allowing the ranking to be described in percentages. Your percentage of positive votes versus negative votes in the player base determines the ranking. It's basically Rotten Tomatoes voting for your schools now that I think it through all the way. :smiley:
  • edited February 2019
    School Dojo Contests -
    This is the one that overlaps with my idea the most, but you took it a step further. In my prior vision the Dojo is your Practice space when in Meditation mode. Interacting with a player in meditation 'knocks on the door' and notifies the player in Practice mode. If the player in Practice mode 'opens the door' to let them in, the new player appears in the practice space. This allows players to practice uninterrupted in the Dojo space to learn moves and such, but no Combat Trial rewards are ever given. The remainder here does depend on this idea in order to capture student details.

    Taking it a step further, we need to determine what kind of content goes in the Dojo Challenge. I really like your Tower idea as it goes nicely with the Tower of Adal motif and is analogous to both Soul Caliber and Mortal Combat's tower game modes. How about this...

    A Dojo Challenge puts you up against the game AI for up to eleven fighting rounds where the AI plays as members of the school. This means that it uses their stats, gear, and everything assigned to that player character as of the last time they were INSIDE the Dojo. This will allow the game to store per member what they last used in the Dojo so that the game AI can recall it later. Since the students are ranked according to independent experience, the game can rank the PCs in difficulty using the student level. That gives you Students to fight in the challenge. Let the game pick a different combat area for each 'floor' randomly. Do not let it repeat selections for the floors. Now how to make the fights fun. Arrange the fights as such...

    First Floor Fight, AI picks a lowest rank student for a one round fight. If you can't beat the first one in one round you should probably go practice more. We talking typically Red difficulty level here after all.

    Second Floor Fight, AI picks a mid rank student (use both the median and average to establish this) for a two round fight. Here we should be talking Orange level AI fights.

    Third Floor Fight, AI picks a high rank student that IS NOT a Mentor for a three round fight. Now we're talking tough, and these guys should be Purple level AI fights.

    Fourth Floor Fight, AI picks a Mentor for a three round fight. Now we are talking hard core, and these guys should be Yellow level AI.

    By the fourth fight you have won 11 rounds. Rewards should be something from the school such as the Mask, or one of the Weapons, or even one of the Spells assigned to the school. This emulates how knocking down Marked ones teaches you the spells and such. That goes so nicely with the overall narrative I absolutely love it.

    So by using the AI difficulty levels plus the school member content you get a vast array of potential fights and it should never get boring. You also get a solid chance to learn how to fight any given school without grinding in Combat Trials against spammy people. Such that if I want to hone my School to take down the dreaded Hokage, I can.

    Sadly, initiating a School Challenge has to be a Combat Trial menu item since you need to enter the School ID. That bites a little, but it's reasonable.
  • PS: Not saying Hokage is a spammy school, they are just the easiest to remember offhand.
  • Holy cow, I came back to a whole lot of info thrown back at me. For the most part I do agree with most of what you are putting down. Like you said, we'll discuss alliances at a later time because it was just a rough idea I cooked up since I, in the game and out, have tried to team up with other top tier schools to battle Lost Prospects and toxic Absolvers alike.

    The only one I want to stretch further upon what you discussed was the reputation system. The passive ping system with finishing a trial is a good start but I think there should be more involvement. I said in my original post that players should either vote
  • Sorry for the overload. I've been cooking up stuff for the game in my head a while now.
  • For the rating system maybe have an active thumbs up or down at end of match that is calculated into the overall. So if you vote up it adds a point. If you vote down it adds none, but doesn't subtract. In this way people can't harass your rating and the End Fight mechanics above are not overridden by the player votes. Finishing a match earns respect. Good Game earns respect. Bad Game is punished on all sides.
  • I think I posted that earlier in the thread but it got cut off
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