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Thread: Ghost rules discussion

  1. #376
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    They have unique remarks for it, like "Thought I had it with me." They also do a unique motion where they check all their pockets. There are no following settling remarks from that. Also, yes, TDM does have the alert and settling remark combo just like in Thief.

  2. #377
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    If you are going to include override sliders outside of the main difficulty options, then surely you'd have to include sliders that make any gameplay element harder? Including lockpicking and combat?

    The former definately affects ghosting, and theoretically you could have an explicit objective to fight someone in an unavoidable confrontation.

    Besides which, as ever, its just plain easier to be absolute, to avoid "Game X has a difficulty slider for element Y. Do the rules require..." exception-querying

  3. #378
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    Quote Originally Posted by Cigam View Post
    If you are going to include override sliders outside of the main difficulty options, then surely you'd have to include sliders that make any gameplay element harder? Including lockpicking and combat?
    I disagree with that. You can always put gamma at the minimum to barely see anything, mute your sound or increase it to the level where your ears hurt. These elements will also make gameplay harder, but is it really worth it? The hardest difficulty in rules is from perspective of ghosting. Lockpicking and combat (just like klatremus said - if you have kill objective, you need kill someone in one hit without being seen or heard) options don't add anything interesting for ghosting. And changing gamma and sound to increase difficulty is just cheap move.

  4. #379
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    low Gamma, low volume, or just plain standing on your head during play, are not in-game gameplay elements though. They are external to it.

    A bit theoretical, but If you had an explicit objective to fight someone to the death, and the mission was scripted so .that as soon as they appear the combat starts, then your fight wouldn't be an auto-bust. You would still be ghosting. And combat difficulty would now be affecting ghost difficulty.

  5. #380
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    Quote Originally Posted by Cigam View Post
    low Gamma, low volume, or just plain standing on your head during play, are not in-game gameplay elements though. They are external to it.
    You say that lack of ability to see or hear doesn't affect gameplay and they aren't in-game elements? You sure? I would say they are more important than lockpicking and combat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cigam View Post
    A bit theoretical, but If you had an explicit objective to fight someone to the death, and the mission was scripted so .that as soon as they appear the combat starts, then your fight wouldn't be an auto-bust. You would still be ghosting. And combat difficulty would now be affecting ghost difficulty.
    If you are forced into head on battle with enemy, then that's definitely a ghost bust. I encountered this kind of situations quite a lot in FMs.

  6. #381
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    Muting the volume or switching your monitor off certainly affects your ability to play the game, but this has no impact on any internal gameworld mechanics or elements, and how intrinsically difficult they are. Their difficulty remains at the same internal programmed level. I mean, lockpicks don't care what the gamma is, and Benny will still hear you on tiles no matter what the master volume is set at.

    I think the distinction between in-gameworld difficulty settings, and other types of settings is pretty clear. Even if some of the latter can be used to make your ability to interact with the game lessen.

    As for the FMs, did the objectives explicitly tell you to enter into combat?

  7. #382
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    With lowered gamma and muted sound you must be more perceptive and look around more often than when you play normally. I actually tried to do Lord Bafford Manor that way. After conversation in basement I went behind patroller going to storage, but somehow went past him without noticing it and somehow he appeared behind me. Since it was so damn hard I had no idea where to escape and he just killed me. So playing that way is much harder than changing Lockpicks and Combat settings.

    As for objectives - they usually mention to kill someone. I never seen any objective that would explicitly said to fight someone head on.

  8. #383
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    I agree with Galaer's points here. The only settings that would impact the core rules of ghosting would be those affecting guards' ability to spot you. Combat is a moot point as once you start fighting head on, you're already busted. Lockpicking is not mentioned in ghost rules, and for Supreme its specifically mentioned to not be a bust. Even if kill objective is present, getting spotted by the enemy is a bust so it has to be a one hit. I've never seen a kill objective written to specify fighting someone for a duration of time. But then I think Galaer has played many more missions than I have so he would know better.

  9. #384
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2013
    But surely The core rules of ghosting allow for anything an objective explicitly requires you to do. So in principle if you can set a task in an objective to N/H/E shouldn't it be set to E?

    Whether any real-world FMs have as yet ever explicitly required a lockpicking, or a combat, shouldn't affect discussions of the ghosting principles of such situations.

    Plus longer and harder lockpicking can certainly increase the challenge for a ghost.

    But no doubt it is probably just as valid to decide that the rule re Expert difficulty was only interested in maxing sneak difficulty to its highest level. Ergo only options related to this are of concern.

  10. #385
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    The thing is that these settings will just increase time with using them. I'm really terrible at combat, so harder combat would mean for me to reload game 50 more times than with easier combat. That's not very interesting. As for lockpicking - nobody really likes long lockpicking. Now imagine situation where there is chest to unlock with lockpicks and there is also AI walking all around the room and never stopping. This means you must walk behind him, picklock chest for short time and then quickly run to him and repeat this process. With short lockpicking it may take 3 rounds, with long - 10. The problem is the same for all difficulties of lockpicking. The only difference is how long you will spend unlocking this chest.

  11. #386
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    So, pickpocketing...

    Should those remarks be excused? I'd say yes because any mission with pickpockets -- and that often includes keys needed for progression -- would automatically be impossible to Supreme.

    Also I kind of already claimed Supreme success in Full Moon Fever where I had to pick one pocket.
    Last edited by marbleman; 17th Jun 2021 at 06:31.

  12. #387
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    @Cigam: Your last paragraph captures my opinion.

    @marbleman: Yes it sounds more like a gameplay script than an alert, so I'd excuse those. If not, you totally remove pickpocketing from the game, and I'd say that's a core element in ghosting. Of course, if a guard gives a regular first alert as you pickpocket him because he sees you doing it, it is still a bust...but I assume you already knew that.
    Last edited by klatremus; 18th Jun 2021 at 01:36.

  13. #388
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    I would like to ask when exactly guards sensitivity setting can be changed? Is it only at the beginning of the mission or anytime you want? I'm asking because I'm curious if low level of this setting would allow some exploits that for T1/T2 regular ghost are allowed (like nudging). While I agree this setting should be at the max level, I think that it should be allowed to lower this setting as the last resort for regular ghost. But it also should be noted.

  14. #389
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    I might write that TDM addendum soon, but I'm still encountering things worth considering.

    Here's, for example, another question. While not all TDM missions have loadout screens, when you do have this option, you can not only buy equipment but also drop what you have. You can theoretically discard all your weapons and equimpent this way. Should it be necessary for Supreme to drop everything you don't need?

    I also want to circle back to this post: https://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthre...=1#post2435384
    We've discussed scripted alerts upon AIs being pickpocketed, but Bienie also mentioned such responses to stolen loot and open doors. According to the post, none of these are counted as alerts in mission stats. I would excuse AIs reacting to missing loot for Supreme, but it feels to me like AIs reacting to open doors should be treated as a bust. Thoughts?

    Finally, I don't know if there's any point in including this into the addendum (this information is available on any stat screen), but AI alerts in TDM are more nuanced than in Thief. There are five types of them, and the game does give you an actual stealth score. The lower the score, the better job you did at being undetected. Alert 1 (AI mumbles but continues doing what they're doing) is the only one that doesn't contributes to stealth score. Additionally, this only concerns alerts. Blackjacking someone doesn't contribute to stealth score either.
    Last edited by marbleman; 19th Jun 2021 at 11:45.

  15. #390
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    I dont think so. I dont see how that follows the Supreme spirit. They were your items to begin with anyway, so it's not like they're unnecessary pickups. Plus if you end up needing them but dropped them, then you would have to get them somewhere else.

    @Galaer: I think for Supreme the sensitivity should be to the maximum level. Not sure about regular Ghost, but I think the same, since the original rules specify highest difficulty.
    Last edited by klatremus; 19th Jun 2021 at 11:48.

  16. #391
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    Whoops, I added more questions to my last post after you've replied, klatremus. Please take another look.

    Meanwhile, I want to ask about the format of this addendum. I feel that making it an appendix somewhere in the end would be a bit messy and that it's better for it to be merged with the existing rule set by adding an asterisk under each rule where TDM nuances come into play, for example:
    1. Highest difficulty level available and playable, usually Expert, although it might be renamed by the author.
    * In TDM, AI vision and AI hearing must be set to Hardcore in gameplay difficulty settings. Lockpicking and combat difficulty may be set per each ghoster's preferences but should be reported when they become relevant.

  17. #392
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    About stealth score: are there any fights between AI? And if yes, do they count to stealth score?

    About highest difficulty rule: in T1/T2 it means to play on 3rd difficulty (Expert) even if sometimes it's not the highest difficulty. For example Running Interference is harder to ghost on Normal and Hard due to lack of knockout objective. Also while there is no sensitivity setting in Thief games, there is Ultimate Difficulty Mod (UDM) and I would say that it works a bit like hardcore difficulty in TDM. It was discussed earlier that UDM isn't necessary for ghost reports even though it maximize difficulty, so right now I wonder if hardcore difficulty isn't also a bit too much. I read that there are some nuances about this setting like if door is opened 20+%, then AI will go into 2nd alert, if door is less than 20% opened, then guard will only 1st alert. This sounds like regular ghost may have very similar difficulty as supreme ghost, so now I wonder if hardcore difficulty may not be a bit too much for regular ghost. But I never played TDM, so I have no idea what difficulty missions present.

  18. #393
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    @marbleman: You are right, I missed the questions you edited in right before I sent my last post. To be honest, I have never really been in agreement with Supreme busting from enemies alerting to missing loot/objectives. I honestly think they should be excused. The rules say "No alerts of any kind" without actually specifying alerts caused by missing loot, but it has always been interpreted to include those as well. It has never really been a problem, as most missions don't have this feature. In Undercover there are 2 loot items in the cemetery iirc, but you can just take those after the alarm is set off. The only other one I can think of is Into the Odd, where it was frustrating as it was the only Supreme bust from the ladies commenting on the main objective (golden egg) being gone. But even in this circumstance, it was a different remark than a normal first alert, and there was no settling remark, so highly comparable to TDM alerts of this nature. If you think about it, later that day or the next day, surely everyone will realize they have been robbed and notice missing items. I agree that alerts to loot items/objectives should be excused in TDM if they are as common as you say, as long as you are not seen or heard in the process and no other rules are broken. Doors left open or other changes causing alerts would not be excused however. For regular Ghost, if it is just a comment it would be excused, if it leads to hunt mode, it would be a bust. This follows the spirit of that rule set.

    As for your second point, would a mumble without change in behavior be comparable to a first alert? Or is it just idle mumbling you're talking about. You say it doesn't count towards the stealth score, but does it still show up in the stats? If so, and since it is called an "alert", I don't think these should be allowed for Supreme, but ok for plain ghost. I don't know much about the stealth score/alert system in TDM.

    The addendum would probably be added to each rule yes, wherever it is relevant. Probably with an asterisk and also a color difference, for easy recognition.

    @Galaer: It is rare, but possible, that the highest difficulty (expert) is not the most challenging yes, but that is what the rule is referring to. You can of course always do what you did playing Running Interference on a lower difficulty and just report the reason for doing so, that is totally fine. Everyone in the ghosting community will understand that. Ultimate Difficulty Mod is exactly that, a mod, and those are never included in the rules. In fact, they would be discouraged, because the report wouldn't be comparable to other players' reports for the same mission.

  19. #394
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    Quote Originally Posted by klatremus View Post
    As for your second point, would a mumble without change in behavior be comparable to a first alert? Or is it just idle mumbling you're talking about. You say it doesn't count towards the stealth score, but does it still show up in the stats? If so, and since it is called an "alert", I don't think these should be allowed for Supreme, but ok for plain ghost. I don't know much about the stealth score/alert system in TDM.
    Yes of course. Alert 1 is still an alert, and the game counts them. So you can have 0 stealth score and however many Alert 1s. I completely agree that this should be acceptable for Ghost but not for Supreme.

    Quote Originally Posted by Galaer View Post
    About stealth score: are there any fights between AI? And if yes, do they count to stealth score?
    I haven't seen any so far, but I would wager it doesn't affect the stealth score.

  20. #395
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    Anyway, here's the first draft of the addendum.

    A. Ghost Mode

    1. Highest difficulty level available and playable, usually Expert, although it might be renamed by the author.
    * AI vision and AI hearing must be set to Hardcore in gameplay difficulty settings. Lockpicking and combat difficulty may be set per each ghoster's preferences but should be reported when they become relevant.

    4. No second level alerts, that is recognition or hunting alerts, of human or non-humans AI are allowed. This includes undead, fire elementals, spiders, bots etc. Rats are excluded.
    * No alerts of levels 2-5 are allowed. The player can take an unlimited amount of level 1 alerts so long as the stealth score remains at 0.

    8. The use of quirks of the Dark engine is allowed, but only as a last resort, and must be reported. Examples include techniques such as "banner transmigration" and "nudging," as explained in part B.
    * Similarly, the use of idTech 4 quirks is allowed, but only as a last resort, and must be reported.

    B. Commentary and Interpretation of Ghost Rules

    5. Examples of alerts

    [...]

    5.1. Alerts in the Dark Mod

    Alerts in the Dark Mod work slightly differently than in Thief. An example of Alert 1 would be a guard muttering to himself something along the lines of "That's an odd noise" or "That's an odd shape," but continuing to patrol or sit in the chair. An example of Alert 2, however, might include these same remarks but with different motions. Patrolling guards would stop and do a little lean, while sitting AIs would rise from their chairs. Alert levels 3-5 are easier to detect as they have different remarks and more conspicuous motions.


    D. Supreme Ghost Mode

    4. No Alerts of any kind from any AI or Device: No first alerts, no comments at all from AI. A single chirp from a Watcher, “Musta Been Rats…”, zombies groaning, etc are a bust. All AI and devices must remain in their normal state and not react to anything you do or initiate in the game. AI walking around and muttering to themselves or having a conversation with another AI are fine.
    * No level 1 alerts are allowed.
    ** Scripted responses to being pickpocketed or noticing missing loot are allowed. These are different from regular alerts and do not count towards anything in the stats.
    *** Scripted responses to open doors, although they are also different from regular alerts and do not count towards anything in the stats, are not allowed.


    5. Inventory and Weapons: You can not purchase weapons and inventory items from the store at loadout. Free items at loadout are allowed to be taken. Stores other than at loadout, such as in-game shops, are ok to use as long as you are not spotted and do not break any other rules. Use nothing that would leave a trace or remnant of evidence. No Potions can be used at all. Rope Arrows and Scouting Orbs can be used but they must be retrieved. Holy water vials are not considered potions and are allowed.
    * There is no need to discard any of the starting equimpent on the loadout screen.

    11. No exploitation of the Dark engine: No nudging, banner transmigration, hooking of AI with boxes, barrel polka dancing or anything that takes advantage of quirks in the Dark engine for game play advantage.
    * Similarly, no exploitation of idTech 4 quirks is allowed.

    This obviously needs further refiniement before being merged with the ruleset. I also want to run this by the TDM community forums as I am not that experienced with the game yet.
    Last edited by marbleman; 20th Jun 2021 at 06:46.

  21. #396
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    Excellent. I like both the wording and the format. I'm planning on playing some TDM in the near future, so I will have more feedback on the specific rules then. You seem like you're on a TDM roll lately, marbleman, so I trust your judgment as far as the rules are concerned. We probably need to have an experimentation period playing some missions before officially changing the original rules.

  22. #397
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    Hold on a bit, I read that in TDM search mode starts from 3rd alert, so shouldn't regular ghost allow 2nd alert?

  23. #398
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    No because level 2 alerts already add to your stealth score. They are kinda like semi-search mode, but at this stage AIs already get a firm idea of your presence.

  24. #399
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2016
    Location: France
    I'm thinking of trying to Supreme some bigger missions now, but the prospect of getting a stealth score of 1 or 2 after spending several hours on a mission scares me a little. Would it be acceptable to rely on a tool like this that allows you to see the stealth score in-game? Normally you can't see it until the mission's done. Long story short, this is something I used when I just got into TDM because I couldn't figure out how alerts and stealth score work (this is how I learnt not to trust first alert remarks for example as these could also be alerts of level 2). Now that I have more experience, I don't need this tool anymore and it feels a little immersion-breaking, but in a large city mission with long sightlines, I'd love to check on those stats once in a while.

  25. #400
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    That is funny. I was going onto the thread to ask if there was a way to check the stealth score during a mission, like ctrl-shift-alt-end cheat. And here you have the answer preemptively! I wouldn't say it busts any mode to use that tool. You're not gaining any stealth benefit from it, just information. I'd use it all the time, at least until I got a feel for the engine.

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