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Adding flavor to combat
More combat storytelling/coolness

Combat generally doesn't have a ton of stuff for you to do during, other occasionally reacting to certain stuff, especially if it's one on one.

More importantly, combat kind of sucks for roleplay. Putting aside the fact for a moment that people tend to try to be as quick as possible for various reasons... It's very awkward to roleplay stuff with the automated combat messaging.

I wanted to gauge what people think about it, if they see this as a problem from combat not being all that complex, or if it's more a case of figuring out how to make the messaging more flavourful, or how to let players RP more easily during combat? I find that a lot of combat is one-sided, and it'd be a lot more tolerable if we enabled people actually getting beaten up in cool, cyberpunky ways.

I have a few ideas, but I want to hear other people's thoughts as well. I mainly would like to see things like an errant gunshot bringing down a delivery drone which shatters and explodes, people getting flung into trash cans by cricket bat swings, or even maybe just more flavor text during combat for who's got the advantage, who's pushing down on who, has the momentum shifted, was an attack parried at the last second, etc. Just more to the system than 'X hits Y in Z zone' until one of them goes unconscious.

As a related idea, fights should probably have a chance of generating messes (I think killing someone already does) and it'd be nice if these showed up DURING the fight and were environment specific. Ie, a fight in a bar could end up with a smashed table, or glass all over the floor. Cracked pavements, smashed holo-ad displays, maybe even a small chance of damaging nearby vehicles, dented furniture, bullet holes on walls... 'X shoots at Y but the shot goes wide.' (Different color) 'The projectile strikes the nearby painting/cabinet/wall/floor/ceiling/bystander!'

Extra minor idea x2, let me shove people into other rooms or walls without needing to drag them. Shoving off roofs is nice, but niche. Bonus points if it does minor damage.

Overall, I would just like to see a bit more feedback and variety from combat, or the ability to more effectively roleplay in it, before and after. How does everyone feel about combat and how it plays with RP?

I do not think more automated pre-defined messages are going to help the issue you've underlined.

That said... Expanded environmental damage would be a boon for forensics, if it isn't already implemented in some manner already. And automated SIC chatter from supposed collaterally damaged bystanders (when combat is initiated in a crowded area) providing the same sort of information you see from GM npc chatter would be interesting. Random (probably non-interactive save w/ forensics and with short decay timers) corpses appearing alongside a message of someone's head exploding when a .45 goes off but misses its intended target on Lamb's Wake? Yes please.

But as far as more pre-defined messages taking place alongside some already pretty spammy combat scroll? I would personally just mentally add them to the elements I skim over to read the important stuff.

I moved to Sindome a few years ago from HL2RP, where I'm used to beatdowns generally being roleplayed (mostly done by the oppressive law enforcement of said universe). In Sindome it feels very gamey, rather than a traumatic experience to learn from. I would much prefer if more people roleplayed beatdowns where there is a clear advantage at least, rather than just doing it mechanically. Emoting/posing and the like.
I think everything in this thread is a great idea, especially the environmental effects leading to forensics.
@Veleth I have seen people do this a few times, usually in the case where the difference is so big, the other person literally cannot harm you and you're not trying to kill each other so there's plenty of time to emote. It's pretty cool, but you don't see it that often.

Another random idea, opponents of similar skill level have a chance to create a 'clash' where weapons clash and the two combatants are pushing against each other for a little while (giving a chance for emotes and chatter) before one person overpowers the other (maybe shifts postures after and drains stamina during?)

Also Veleth makes a good point, combat is so gamey that it probably plays a part in people generally treating it and death as just a daily routine (until the system forces them via DCD to give shit) instead of the extremely traumatic experience it -would- be.

I'm not 100% sure on the lore, but from what I see in ambience, especially in Red, a lot of mixers do -not- have clones because they can't afford it. PCs aren't regular people, sure (hence why they can afford it) but people shrugging off death until they can't afford to anymore feels gamey as hell.

I find combat excessively verbose as it is, to the point of being an unreadable scrawl with more than two participants. I suspect a lot of experienced players do what I do and use accessibility messaging just to make less of a unparseable scrolling novel.

More coded mechanical depth might add flavor, but I don't personally think even more canned messaging for players to glaze over after seeing for 1000 time is the answer. Players who really want to add true roleplay can always pose and spoof, but I see roleplay as something that happens before and after coded combat.

Then again if I had the option I would turn verbose combat off entirely, I think any feedback longer than 80-100 characters per coded event is too long.

@Sly It's really hard to balance this in any way, as roleplay-ifying combat would end up changing the whole system. I do like youjr idea post, but I am not sure how we can solve this in a way that makes everyone happy. It's a difficult issue.

But basically, when I play a non-combatant who gets attacked, I just get annoyed OOCly. Meanwhile when my character in HL2RP got beat up by a cop, it was a character developing experience, albeit tragic, it gave me something to work on, rather than just frustration that I can't react to the massive scroll. If that makes sense? Don't have to be a masochist to appreciate harsh character development.

I've felt for a while that the PvP and death element in Sindome can be underwhelming due to the lack of roleplay involved. When the intent is to win, few are going to stop to pose and give their target a chance to react or escape which is natural and totally understandable in those circumstances, just not very immersive especially for the victim. What @Veleth described would be my preference too, or something in the middle involving rolls so it's fair, but that would involve changing the whole system.

To avoid deviating too far from the subject, what if automated combat lines were shortened to be more easily acknowledged in a pinch? The spam is terrible, it's stressful as hell to try and keep up with reading the lines when you're actively being attacked, let alone gauge the threat/damage dealt and respond accordingly with posture etc. I know that sounds counterproductive to the goal of this thread, but hear me out- shorten the automated lines to be more rapidly digestible, and maybe that would make room for people to RP in between. By the time I read the full line of someone's katana slash, another attack is coming before I can react ICly.

I think some of the background collateral damage a few people here have suggested would be really cool too, and go a long way in making even a friendly spar feel a little more epic if things are getting knocked over and people passing by on the street during a fight are struggling to get away from the chaos. Maybe there could be an environmental-type message about them scattering when it starts, what ever.

Players might roleplay on facing sides of a crush match where the outcome is certain, or during an extended stalemate, but I think anyone expecting roleplay as part of active combat as a rule is expecting way, way too much from other players.
Where I used to play, combat was exclusively through roleplay, and people were usually happy to play to lose. Especially those non-combatants. Sure, that isn't possible here since there is a combat system already in place, but I'm just saying it is possible. Don't underestimate roleplayers. :P
@Nymphali

I don't think that just shortening the combat text is going to help. If you want people to be able to take the time to process, digest, and respond IC to what's happening in combat, then combat would need to be slowed down, allowing more time in between each step of the back and forth.

To be clear, I'm not commenting on whether slowing down combat would be good or bad, just noting it would be necessary to fit in any RP comments in between.

From the small amount of combat I've witnessed, it does seem too fast.

How much of a leap would it be to simply increase the delay between combat actions? Every other thing that's done in Sindome nearly runs as slow-motion, just by the nature of typing. Come to think of it, a lot of automated actions (leaving rooms, opening doors, removing/wearing clothing, etc) run at a much greater pace than anyone could be expected to type a response to interrupt them.

Just a noob spit-balling, so please don't jump down my throat if I'm being a fool here.

An issue with slowing combat down is response time. Combat with multiple opponents, especially, can take long enough for reinforcements to arrive from across the sector, -especially- when they are well-prepared PC reinforcements. Changing the balance such that more of your target's oldbie allies can pile in may not be desired.
^ I think this highlights another issue, actually.

Walking seems very fast. If I 'n' 'enter 'n' 'enter' 'n' 'enter', players in the first 2 places I land will barely see me pass before I'm gone. It makes chasing someone who's walking, not running/sprinting damn near impossible unless you immediately react to them leaving.

Why not double the delay on attacks but also double the damage they deal? (And double munitions usage, etc.) Less spam, nearly equivalent balance.