Escalation
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A lot of people ask for features which would allow the players to survive for longer in the game. I've heard that a lot of those features aren't planned because the game is about how you died and not how you survived. I wouldn't mind seeing some of those features added to the game, but I'd also love to see a new feature added alongside them. It may have to wait for NPCs to be added, but it might not have to wait. I'd like to see events that escalate the threat to the players based on their chances of survival based on what they have acquired in game so far.

 

The game will periodically do a check and take stock of the player's progress in the game. Every can of food is counted. Every generator. Every little bit of fuel. Every crop that is in the progress of growing. Every container. Every little thing will be taken into account. Everything will be given a rating based on how much of an impact it will have on a players survival. The greater the chance a character has at surviving the greater the chance the game will escalate things and the greater that escalation may be.

 

With NPCs this may come in the form of raiders becoming aware of the players base and aware of the resources they have stockpiled within. If we don't want to wait for NPCs we could use the zombies and create different events to threaten the player. The game could also use the weather as a threat. The game would have more content added to allow for the players to survive, but this would be something to give the players false hope because the games 'escalation' mechanic would be present to steal that hope away at any moment.

 

The odds could be in the players favor at the beginning, but every time the escalation check fails that adds to the size of the event when it finally does trigger which would also be influenced by how much the player has amassed over time. The better you do the harder you may fall eventually when the game decides it's finally time for you to die. The harder you fight the harder the game hits back.

 

I know this is one of those ideas that is a quirky little thing I like but wouldn't be popular among the masses at all. I don't see it as very likely to be added to the game at all. I thought I'd share it anyway. Let me know what you think about the idea. Please also let me know what you would call this game mechanic/system because I wasn't quite sure what to call it. I named it escalation because it escalates the threat to the player based on the players threat to the games whole premise of ensuring you die. That and it fit alongside the naming sense or erosion a little bit.

 

 

Edited by Kaleidozombie
No typo shall escape me.

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11 minutes ago, Kaleidozombie said:

The game could also use the weather as a threat.

That would be epic. Imagine the lightning strike somewhere in the forest which will cause a massive fire.

Edited by Burger_Time

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1 minute ago, Burger_Time said:

That would be epic. Imagine the lightning strike somewhere in the forest which will cause a massive fire.

 

And all because of your massive stash of canned corn.

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I like the concept, but to a certain extent, this already happens naturally. There are just mechanics to counter the difficulty (which there always should be a way to overcome the difficulty. 

 

Power / Water cutting out -> (No lights, can't refrigerate, cant hydrate)
Gas running out (Can't power things, need gas cans)

Erosion (Less fresh food, need to farm)

Zombie Population (Depending on settings, zombie pop will build as time goes on. With zombie respawn enabled, this can contribute heavily)

 

All of those things (plus more that I'm sure I haven't mentioned sort of run off of each other. Power and Gas running out in particular, is closely linked, especially if you're an experienced player. 

 

There are lots of smaller things that would make it challenging, like

- Limited gas reserves at gas stations. A finite number that won't allow anything beyond a few hundred litres. Right now it seems pretty much infinite

- More extreme weather events. If zombies reacted to these (like the old Fear The Rain mod) this could increase the threat level significantly. Especially if things like extreme heat could cause fires 
- Higher chance of random health events like catching a cold or becoming nauseated by food.

- More random health events. Maybe you miss and bang your hand with a hammer, or cut yourself opening a can, or burn your mouth eating food that's too hot, or get a headache etc.

- Having allergies to certain foods, and having to avoid them 

- Higher chance of infection being around dead zombies

 

Lots of these could turn on / build up over time. Gas would do that naturally, as it is used. Weather would make sense to dial up over time. Health events could become more prominent as time goes on (but still be reduced by one of the skills, perhaps). Infection becomes a problem the more zombies there are, which obviously builds as time goes on.

 

I think having raiders target the player when stockpiles are high is a fantastic idea, but that would need to wait for NPCs. The above, I believe, wouldn't be that hard to implement, in fact, most of it could be modded in. I think everything in that list is quite achievable, even with what we have now, and will significantly add to the atmosphere and challenge the game offers. 

 

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One thing I was thinking about some time back was that the zombies could randomly pick things up. So leaving things on the ground could disappear over time with each zombie passing by might pick something up. I tend to drop a lot of things on the ground as it is the easiest way I know if I have searched a zombie and might want that loot later.

 

Also would like to see zombies having a chance to destroy wooden boxes and everything would be dropped to the ground, and possibly picked up. So having your base overrun you could loose a lot if there are many zombies running through it. Well not loose it as it would now be on the zombie.

 

I can imagine this would be a huge data issue as now the game would need to keep track of each zombie that picked anything up.

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4 hours ago, sharkstertheshark said:

Ill be honest and say I don't exactly like this idea. Doing a check to see if you should be possibly kneecapped for amassing a set amount of resources is not good design. 

Less I would say for amount of resource and more for the amount of time you spend in a spot or do things with it.

 

7 Days to Die has an interesting concept of a heat map. IE the more you do in an area the more it brings the critters to your area. Everything from staying in a spot to developing the area. The more you do the more likely things are to be drawn to your area.

 

This would sorta force a person to try and develop multiple safe houses and garden patches to try and keep areas not so active.

 

-edit

Heat maps due make sense but since the zeds we fight in this game are basically mindless it really would not work that well since the design here is them wandering into areas.

Edited by nickodemos

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3 hours ago, nickodemos said:

7 Days to Die has an interesting concept of a heat map. IE the more you do in an area the more it brings the critters to your area.

I love this and want it tied to zombies' sense of smell, meaning if you stay somewhere too long they'll pick up your scent and head over. Preferably this would be a small effect but with a massive range (determined by zed scent abilities) that is heavily influenced by wind speed and direction.

 

As for the raiders, I'd prefer if they discovered you via direct behaviour (eg. scouting territory for raids by default) rather than indirect meta stuff. This game has very few (none?) systems that track and respond to the player, and I love that- the world is its own beast and you're just trying to live in it.

Edited by trombonaught
Beer.

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There are things that people would love to see added to the game, and I like some of those ideas. I wouldn't mind seeing them added to the game as they are things I would enjoy having or doing. The developers don't want to add them because this is supposed to be a game about how you die, not a game about how you survived. Anything that guarantees survival will not be a part of the main game and we will only ever see as mods. I was thinking of a way to counter-balance those things so you could enjoy the survival experience and yet still be doomed to failure.

 

I do like the heat map idea. I also like the idea of the more territory you control the more likely it is others will know that you have more to protect and the more able you are to defend it which would mean they'd increase their force in size to try and overcome your defenses while taking minimal losses themselves. As for zombies, the more active you are the more likely you are to attract their attention. Generators make noise. Having more means more noise. Lights attract zombies. Noises attract zombies. Smells attract zombies. This would include dirty clothing and compost bins. Cleaning clothes would make noise. Going on and scavenging for canned food and other items might get you noticed and lead other people or zombies back to you base.

 

You're trying your best to survive and the game is trying it's best to counter that. I was just thinking it might be cool to introduce a game mechanic that reflects that. Anyway, I'm just throwing ideas out there. I still have plenty of other ideas to throw out there. Some may take root and others will be eaten by the birds or rot. We'll just have to see.

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3 hours ago, nickodemos said:

Less I would say for amount of resource and more for the amount of time you spend in a spot or do things with it.

 

7 Days to Die has an interesting concept of a heat map. IE the more you do in an area the more it brings the critters to your area. Everything from staying in a spot to developing the area. The more you do the more likely things are to be drawn to your area.

 

This would sorta force a person to try and develop multiple safe houses and garden patches to try and keep areas not so active.

 

-edit

Heat maps due make sense but since the zeds we fight in this game are basically mindless it really would not work that well since the design here is them wandering into areas.

The beauty of PZ is you get yourself killed rather than the game needlessly thrashing you to death (whether you became reckless, impulsive, didn't weigh the risk/reward, etc.) Being in a cabin in the middle of the woods and amassing supplies and then being lit up by an invisible marker that artificially inflates the danger drives against that. There are just more organic and fluid ways to do this. Bandits and zombies should start taking an interest in that cabin in the middle of the woods because you decided you'd like to use a gun rather than a bow to hunt and inadvertently put a giant blinking neon sign saying that you are there and you merit attention.

Edited by sharkstertheshark

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Well I am not sure how the mechanics would work with bandits being added. Honestly if we go this route then there this would be another entire game. We would have to start setting up traps, alarms, checks against the bandits skills to see if they set traps against our skills setting traps.

 

PZ is pretty much a brain dead (pun was not really intended) game. Play till you do something stupid and your life is lost. Adding all these other things make things great for the long time players but it really is changing the entire concept of how PZ started.

 

I like mods. You can set things up how you game style wants to go. If anything I think PZ should stay simpler overall but it would be nice to see them add background mechanics that modders can run with.

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Right now, it seems events are trigger with little regard to the player. About the only factor I'm aware of player's have is really just where the event happens. Being that it isn't all players at the same time (unless they are all in the same area), it's at least plausible to believe that events are even happening that aren't near us.

 

I like this scenario more than I like the idea that the game is actively working against us. We prepare for what might happen, and die from something we missed, as opposed to preparing for what might happen, and then getting punished for...playing wisely?

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I think the biggest danger of this kind of mechanic is that it could encourage illogical player behaviour and metagaming. E.g. one might decide to not pick up any canned food at all, in order to keep the game difficulty low for as long as possible

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