Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

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Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by vrolok » 02 Apr 2016, 06:47

This is my shout out to the community, before OpenMW has reached 1.0

Dear friends/comrades/fellow Morrowind lovers!
OpenMW opens up great possibilities to make Morrowind great again :D We all know and love Morrowind for great many things. For me personally Morrowind is more than just a game, it's a true work of art. The game world, the writing, overall design are all brilliant in the game.

But Morrowind has a weak side too. It's an old game, many mechanics seem redundant nowadays. But what is even worse, many original game mechanics are simply broken. I would even go as far as to say that gameplay itself is broken or at the very least it is extremely flawed. I am sure that everybody wants to see at least some changes done to the gameplay.

And it brings me to my main point. I want community to come together to make it possible. Such an undertake would require a lot of creativity, a lot of balancing and a lot of work. I believe that only working together and focusing on one main project will be the only chance to revive the game. You might ask me why. It's simple.

I do not doubt the creativity of Morrowind community. More than a decade of modding showed that the community is capable of great things. But we all see how it slowly fades. There are still many people modding Morrowind, but not as many as before. If it was as busy as Skyrim's community, for instance, there would've been no need to make a shout out. There are enough people to create several working overhauls. But for Morrowind, I believe that community needs to combine forces.

It's also important to concentrate forces. While there are many great mods for Morrowind, many are incompatible, contradict each other. This overhaul needs to be something special, a truly uniting project. At least at its base form. Instead of several people working on their own different overhauls, which might be good, but are often left unfinished, buggy and raw, we should make it a great endeavour for everyone to partake.

I do not propose any particular vision, even though I have many ideas. Because there are many opinions on the issue, finding the right approach will be tricky. It's very likely that the overhaul will be modular. I only want to create something like a framework, very similar to OpenMW in a way. OpenMW is a new engine and it's going to become preferable way to play the game. I want to make one overhaul, which will also be considered default way to play by the community.

What really needs to be done? I know that I am not the only one who wants to overhaul gameplay. Many talented programmers and modders probably also want to do it. We need to create a project with discussions on how exactly it should go. So it assumes a form of OpenMW or TR - an open project without real hierarchy, where everybody is free to partake in the meaningful way. The more support the project will gain, the more possibilities it will open.

Things I see that definitely need balancing and improving:
Combat system, Magic, Attributes, Skills, Sneaking, Alchemy, Enchanting, Game Economy, etc.

Just imagine what really is possible if most talented modders come to work together on it? At the very least, the game will not be broken anymore in terms of gameplay. But it is also possible to take it to new levels, to make it really fun to play.

Once again, I love Morrowind. Best TES game in my opinion, one of the best games ever. Doesn't mean gameplay isn't broken and we all know that. It's still brilliant though, but I hope we can come together and make it even better with one overhaul to rule them all. And obviously, the overhaul itself should be modifiable and configurable, but it should provide network for future mods to work around. I only propose everybody to consider working together on one modular system which will rely on OpenMW to work. We could create a subforum somewhere and discuss all possible changes in detail. All changes should be carefully weighted and considered on how they would work together.

That's my opinion, what do you guys think? Even the fact that we now are able to think about overhauling the game is only thanks to you. I am very grateful for all the work you've put into project so far. Don't want to congratulate you until it's finished, but I'll definitely do it once version 1.0 is out. Best regards!

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by DestinedToDie » 02 Apr 2016, 09:38

Have you ever seen this? http://www.nexusmods.com/morrowind/mods/43522/

There are already good fullscale rebalances available. I´m confused why you think making another one will bring the community together and stop it from fading. It doesn´t take the whole community to make such a mod either, 1 person is enough. Late April fools joke?

If you want a project that would benefit the whole community, and probably need the whole community to take part in in order to finish it, there´s the abandoned MOAR project, which seeks to replace all Morrowind assets with modern ones while still matching dimensions and position: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=3404&p=38195&hilit=moar#p38195

If you want to revive the Morrowind community, you need to make a new game. Why? Because many players from Oblivon and Skyrim decide to try out Morrowind, simply because they want more of a similar gameplay. On the other hand, if you make a new game on the OpenMW engine, then new players who play it on that engine will funnel into the Morrowind community as well. There is currently 1 such public game being made:


Roadmap: https://bugs.openmw.org/projects/examplesuite/roadmap

Another productive thing you could do is learn C++ and work on the OpenMW engine. Aside from getting some really good experience with writing code, you´d be stopping Morrowind from becoming obsolete and unplayable on newer operating systems, extending the life of the game. And also making the engine better than vanilla mods allow. This is probably the best thing you could contribute to Morrowind.

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by Atahualpa » 02 Apr 2016, 11:14

@vrolok: Well, that really sounds utopian - which is not bad at all. But as DestinedToDie said, you have to face the facts. There are already some big overhauls available, and adding another one within the limitations even OpenMW has at the moment wouldn't be wise.

OpenMW has to mature before we can start something like your "Let's overhaul Morrowind in a completely modular way" project. There's a lot of de-hardcoding and refinement necessary to give modders (and artists, modellers, texturers, animators, etc.) the true freedom to modify the game in any way they want to. Only then your utopia could become true.

For the time being, reviving the MOAR project or supporting the Example Suite and the Game Template project is the way to go, IMO. The first one is needed to lure Skyrim-spoiled people back to Morrowind, the second one may convince people of OpenMW's superiority over the vanilla engine, and the third one simplifies - and essentially enables - creating new games with OpenMW. If we concentrate on these three projects, we will eventually reactivate former Morrowind modders and attract many new members to the Morrowind modding community.

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by tarsis » 02 Apr 2016, 12:50

vrolok wrote:That's my opinion, what do you guys think?

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by TechNoirMK » 02 Apr 2016, 18:22

vrolok wrote:That's my opinion, what do you guys think?
tarsis wrote:No.

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by sjek » 02 Apr 2016, 20:21

and for the sake of it a book could be written already from these forums on game mechanics not even going yet to modding forums. loooooooooooooong discussions on simple looking details :D

edit: and like said it would be hard in the current state and even vanilla needed external programs for "simple" ones. after maturing it can even work without crashing all the time becos of combapility problems which would make doing compilations rather easy

edit2: or not so hard. it takes it's own mindset to mod xD
"life is crazy"
"craziness has beauty which only crazies understand" some movie clip in the head.

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by vrolok » 02 Apr 2016, 20:46

Okay, I was kind of expecting similar reaction, but to be fair I have nothing against it. If you don't want changes to the game, it is fine (duh, obviously). One doesn't need to be a fan of later TES games to see flaws Morrowind has in terms of balance.

Maybe for many people it is immersive to play the game where you can get OP in a couple of seconds using obvious exploits, which the game often even pushes you to use. I can see that. It has it's own merits, especially when making an OP character. But I personally always install dozens of mods to fix small aspects of the game, while still not being satisfied with end results. Well, yeah, I am a bit of perfectionist, so what?

My only worry is that it's going to happen all over again. One person does one mod to improve the game, another does another. It all compiles until someone smart enough decides to combine them into one pack like MGSO did. But it is buggy and quite far from perfect. Yet people still use it, because of convenience. Instead of spending hours and hours looking for the right graphic improvements, most users simply install one mod even if it's not perfect.

Why not come together and discuss everything? I am sure people have a lot of insight on different aspects of the game. Why some things work while others do not. Instead of coming up with many smaller plugins, people will just work on a single big one.

I especially love the "No" answers. I mean, I appreciate all the response and value your opinions, but you could simply say that you are not interested. I am not asking for help or anything. I just want to raise awareness on the issue ( :? what an extremely Western thing to do). If somebody will be interested in the future, I am sure we will have a productive discussion. There are a lot of people who want to improve the game, I am sure I will find support sooner or later.

As for MOAR projects and others, I personally am less worried about the graphics in the game (only when it has implication on gameplay, like proper collision detection, etc.). It already looks good enough to me with a few modifications. Striking real balance in gameplay is much more important and challenging task in my opinion. On one hand, you don't want to change too much from the original game, on the other hand, there are quite a few changes that are just mandatory.

I mean who really thinks that attribute modifiers work as intended? Or personality and persuasion? What about Endurance being an attribute which screws you up in the long run? What about skills growing faster when you level them up, since you succeed more often? And what about piles and piles of gold you acquire in mere hours? Only use for the gold is training and enchanting, which itself is very broken, albeit kinda fun. Magic can be either useless and only provoke save scumming or extremely OP, making you just another god in the game. And all this is just the tip of the iceberg.

In my opinion, Morrowind deserves more. It deserves to be balanced to make the experience of playing even more complete, even more immersive, so to speak. There are obviously limitations to how good you can make the game. Combat system will most likely not reach Dark Souls level, that is clear. But we should at least try to use possibilities the new engine provides, even if it has its own limitations.

If you disagree, it's fine. I only want to make a shout out to the people and I thought it would be the most obvious place to start asking people on this topic.

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by DestinedToDie » 02 Apr 2016, 21:04

I don´t mean to keep you down at all, just giving you some constructive criticism. In my opinion there are way better projects to work on. You may feel like those don´t matter and the one you presented is the most important. When was the last time the whole world stood together in agreement? That happened never. It´s unrealistic to think you´re going to get everyone in with your project.

One big reason you´re not attracting people´s interest is that there is already a mod that does most of those things. It´s a single mod too, so unless you combine it with 3 mods that do the exact same thing, you´re not going to run into incompatibilities. It´s totally fine if you don´t like BTB´s Improvements (I never use it myself) and want to make your own version.

People here say "no"? You don´t really need us naysayers. If BTB could make his mod by himself, then so can you. Rebalancing most of the things you mentioned is easy. All you need to do is change some numerical values in the CS, which is the simplest type of modding possible.

My recommendation? If you still think it´s worthwhile, just do it.

Last edited by DestinedToDie on 02 Apr 2016, 21:29, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by AnyOldName3 » 02 Apr 2016, 21:15

One thing that might help is if there was a single main mod setup that everyone started off with and aimed to cover most things. Skyrim has STEP, which doesn't quite do that, but when modding New Vegas, everything I saw seemed to direct me to following EssArrBee's Fear And Loathing guide, and that aimed to combine a lot of mods which overhauled everything which needed it and was guaranteed to work flawlessly. In some ways, this goes against the 'point' of modding, i.e. making the game that you want to play, instead of what Todd Howard wants you to play, but it does guarantee a lot more compatibility if this kind of effort is made by a few experts.
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Re: Fullscale Game Rebalance Manifesto

Post by raevol » 02 Apr 2016, 22:03

@tarsis, @TechNoirMK, any reason why you are being so rude? We don't need that kind of behavior here.

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