What Demigod II Should Look Like

By on March 4, 2010 6:19:24 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Ke5trel

Join Date 02/2008
+118

-  It's clear that if Demigod has a long tale it will be with a diminishingly small group of committed players. 

-  If and when GPG develops the property further it will most likely be in terms of a sequel, not an expansion. 

Let's talk about what that sequel should look like.  Hopefully if the feedback is good it will get back to GPG and we'll see the distilled results in a couple of years. 

With any mechanics or UI or anything that bugs even slightly you should put down how it *should* work instead. Don't waste time complaining about how it is.  Instead let's talk about how it can be. 

I'll get some of the major ones out of the way right now:

1.  Multiplayer Code and UI - excluding the initial clusterclown release debacle I'd like to see multiplayer code copied shamelessly from HoN.  For this type of game it doesn't really get better than that.  The key ingredients to that formula from a consumer perspective imo

A.  Server/Client setup - lower ping, reconnection to dc'd games, A's slow PC doesn't cripple B's game

B.  Lobby Win probabilities based on stats

C.  Native statistics compiling.  Bara's site and criteria are awesome.  Put all of that in the game and make the most relevant stats instantly accessible.  Imo those are wins, losses, time played, and disconnects

D.  Exclusion options a la Supcom 2.  Don't backslide on me ^^

2.  Streamlined Social Networking - some of this is in or coming through the Impulse UI.  Make it native or seamless for II.

A.  Personal, team, clan, and general chat options

B.  Easily accessible friends, group, and clan options

C.  A notes and rating system outside of stats or friends status

D.  Persistent status markers outside the game.  If you want to get fancy tie them to signifiers ingame, and if you want a potentially rewarding balancing nightmare give performance bonuses for them.  Favor items are a start.  Now iterate that out. 

E.  Foster your community.  Bring in community reps who talk on the forums and play the game.  Sponsor tournaments and leagues.  Do that alot.  Hell, if you want to pay someone to do nothing else but organize that sort of thing I'd be happy to submit a resume, because you need to effin liase if you want to build the solid word of mouth communities are there for (^^)

3.  Make Modding Native and Friendly.  This doesn't need sub-categories, it's pretty basic.  You need to let your players make maps and demigods without a sophisticated skillset or a $10,000 software suite.  If that means the base game is slightly less pretty, guess what: no one cares as long as the gameplay is there. 

Seriously, the maps and models are so beautiful in this game but when they have fundamental flaws, like Crucible, nothing can be done on our side to work that out.  (I can't bear to think of how many artist man-hours you wasted on that map because you didn't think through the implications of bottlenecked play.)

4.  Make Replays native.  They need to be in on Release day, and they need to be as good as they are now.

5.  Take out minions, or rehash the mechanic from the ground up.  A single pet or set of pets is balance-able.  An army vs. individual system is too difficult unless you have someone obsessively balancing for a year or two.

6.  Tweak your Beta Schedules.  Closed Beta, however long it is, should have a month of playtime with a game that is completed in all but name.  Then you throw it wide open, or at least toss out 20k keys on Facebook.  You need to stresstest the beast and the balance before you go to the presses, and that takes time.    

7.  Create a pipeline.  Set a minimum number of DGs and maps that need to be in release (12 each).  Then make twice as many of each *before release*, and parcel them out slowly over the space of a year, tweaking as the meta dictates.  The recent Bioware approach of releasing extras immediately and over time is a good one both in terms of piracy-prevention and continuing revenue. 

8.  Either make Single-Player good or abandon it.  A Mortal Kombat approach is viable, but you really have to polish that waaaay up if that's what you are doing.  Otherwise you shouldn't waste your time or money putting together something half-assed when the game without it would be just as good or better

What else would we like to see in Demigod II?

 

 

 

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March 4, 2010 6:38:47 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I agree with pretty much everything you've said, and I feel that a Demigod II that followed these guidelines would be a massive success.

An interesting note, however, are the graphics. The backlash from SupCom 2 is that the game took too far a step backwards with the graphics from the original. The original actually looks better in nearly all regards and allowed for custom maps and units. The sequel looks worse and, due to the fact its built in a similar way to Demgiod, at current doesn't support modding to the degree the original did. I'd be happy with a less prettier game if it meant custom content - however they have to be able to provide something easy to use like Blizzard's World Builder programs otherwise the trade off simply isn't worth it.

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March 4, 2010 7:37:59 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I think that there needs to be a base element of the game that is totally free and also integrated into the general playerbase.  Even a demo with only 2 demigods and 1 map would work if it also bolstered the online population of the paying customers.  The idea is that the easier it is to get a game started, the more people will buy the game.

Multiplayer games are competitive by nature so that needs to be supported very well.  Stats, stats, and more stats is the first step to that.  Clans, competitions, tournaments is the second.

I think 8 demigods was WAY to low to start with, maybe 12 or 14, or even 10 with 1 new one released every 2 months that are announced in advance would have been fine.  8 would have been fine if DotA/HoN didn't already have 60 and LoL 40.

I really think that a MP-centric game is going to need an extended open beta for balance reasons.  No in-house QA team could ever come close to the balance of real hardcore gamers.  For instance, 90% of the items in demigod never, ever get bought or used.

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March 4, 2010 8:23:20 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting ,


5.  Take out minions, or rehash the mechanic from the ground up.  A single pet or set of pets is balance-able.  An army vs. individual system is too difficult unless you have someone obsessively balancing for a year or two.

Bull shit, I agree they need to be rewritten, but making it only one pet or taking it out all together will just be a stupid and pointless idea really. Wow I equip all these items and build up all these skills just to ramp up 1 pet? Honestly that would be pointless and just lead to generals being played like assassins again. The theme of generals was power in numbers, if you take those numbers away and just make it one minion then all you are doing is juast building up another demigod to take the place of a weaker behind it; which is nothing less then a meal if that 1 demigod minion dies. If it is a summonable minion then it will just be op, as as soon as it dies, another one just as powerful is tossed on the map. If you nerf it to the point it isnt as strong as a demi, then it will need numbers to win, but it is only one making it a waste of a skill slot. I will happiuly buy demigod 2, but not if they take minions out or revamp to only one effing minion.

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March 4, 2010 10:37:59 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I agree with most of these.
I did the open beta, and have playing on and off since. The main reason for me was low content. Only 8 Demigods (going to 10 ONLY last Nov) and about 10 (I fgt how many) maps makes this game lose its luster for a while.
I also was following the minion debate closely. I think that they do have it, at this point, where the generals play significantly differently than the assassins, but I would love a better system. Still, I'm at about as much of a loss for ideas as I was when this game came out.

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March 5, 2010 12:42:36 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Is there anyone at GPG or SD seriously considering DG 2?  If so, I can't imagine it will be something coming out in the next 2 years, though.

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March 5, 2010 4:48:57 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Even if there was a demigod 2, would ppl actually consider buying it?

Reputation is very important and im afriad its been ruined...

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March 5, 2010 8:44:36 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I've always felt that good games don't need to have much added to improve upon them.  If all the bugs from DG 1 could be worked out and many of the single and multiplayer game improvements made, that's really all that's necessary to make an improvement in the sequel.  

 

Having said this, there should be a single player campaign - nothing too fancy, perhaps a world with 10 continents from which each DG originates. Conquer each continent and the world is yours (ok, that might be a bit complicated design-wise).  Of course, it would also be nice to have every item in the shop, every citadel upgrade, and every DG ability/spell be useful.  Finger of God/Trebuchet might be added automatically at War Rank 8 and 10, for example.  Same with the Death timer upgrade.  Perhaps Fortified Structures could be wrapped up with the tower damage upgrade into a single upgrade.  A larger variety of maps would be nice.  

 

I think 10 DGs is more than enough, but variety is what seems to be the primary interest, and therefore major selling point, in the market.  This may be the primary reason Starcraft, among many others, was a vastly more popular game than Total Annihilation (not better, just more popular). SC had three distinct sides whereas TA had two that were largely interchangeable.  Same thing with Dawn of War - the hottest topic was always the creation of more factions and which ones they might be (of course many DoW players had also been tabletop fanboys so there was a history).  The designers are unfortunately going to need to keep this in mind and probably consider creating at least double the amount of DGs in the next one.

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March 5, 2010 10:27:20 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting pacov,
Is there anyone at GPG or SD seriously considering DG 2?  If so, I can't imagine it will be something coming out in the next 2 years, though.

Quoting Frogboy,

I don't think the DG concept will die. Demigod is a great game. Either GPG will make a sequel or Stardock will ultimately make a game that is in the same genre (with special pricing for Demigod players - you can quote me on that) to expand on the concept.  

Two years is optimism  

 

 

 

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March 5, 2010 10:27:25 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

Quoting pacov,
Is there anyone at GPG or SD seriously considering DG 2?  If so, I can't imagine it will be something coming out in the next 2 years, though.

GPP is working on Kings and Castles and an unannounced project. Stardock is working on Elemental and an unannounced RPG. So probably not.

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March 5, 2010 10:45:37 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I will happiuly buy demigod 2, but not if they take minions out or revamp to only one effing minion.

The problem with the current system is that once you have minions they don't cost anything, and you get nothing for killing them.  That makes balancing them very tricky - if you make them even slightly effective they are overpowered. 

We've gotten to a point, a year after release, where Erb and Oak have effective minions that don't instantly own in casual play but will absolutely clean up if coordinated, QoT has minions she uses as health pots and not much else, Occ uses monks and idol minions, maybe, and people RQ the second they see a Sedna on their team with Yetis.

Given GPG's Fire-and-forget method of development you really want such a complicated mechanic in a sequel?  I mean, this stuff was pointed out multiple times long before release, and we still ended up with a crippled system. 

Pets are lame but at least they work.

 

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March 5, 2010 8:25:38 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Ke5trel,

I will happiuly buy demigod 2, but not if they take minions out or revamp to only one effing minion.
The problem with the current system is that once you have minions they don't cost anything, and you get nothing for killing them.  That makes balancing them very tricky - if you make them even slightly effective they are overpowered. 

We've gotten to a point, a year after release, where Erb and Oak have effective minions that don't instantly own in casual play but will absolutely clean up if coordinated, QoT has minions she uses as health pots and not much else, Occ uses monks and idol minions, maybe, and people RQ the second they see a Sedna on their team with Yetis.

Given GPG's Fire-and-forget method of development you really want such a complicated mechanic in a sequel?  I mean, this stuff was pointed out multiple times long before release, and we still ended up with a crippled system. 

Pets are lame but at least they work.

 

So instead of going the extra mile to give more then one game play with a different type of character you would rather erase the idea, an idea that majority of the members got so hyped about? I'm sorry but no that is what I would call lazy to bad progammers. Going one single pet as I stated would simply make them either op, as 1 pet minion or whatever else you want to choose to call them would need to be as powerful as a demigod itself to make it worth while, and ultimately giving it the power to be summoned is just making it op as that is a constant summonable demigod that is about to die.

 

Ok so lets give the minions the same amount of gold and xp as regular creep was, even though 2 character actually have to pay mana to get theres out and the other 2; one not only pays mana but requires dead units and the other must roman in combat to kep them supplied. So lets just give it to them, do you see how the incentative to actually use minions has just dropped? Why, because it will literally bew no different then buying angels and priest early, all you are doing is giving your opponents more gold and exp. Lets not forget your are setting yourself up to be bitched at by your teammates because of it. So what do we do? Take them out is the first reaction that everyone wants to yell instead of putting more thought into how we can fix this problem.

 

First problem I see here is we need to break up the fucking holy trinity demigods; OAk/LE/UB. Second problem we need to actually make generals god damn generals and actually dependant on their minions. Bcause guess what? I see more games where a oak is moving without spirits or an le isn't dependant on them then a game where they actually are.

 

Pets are lame, but I don't want a pet I want a army; only reason I still play demigod is because of not QoT, but because I don't have to play another damn game where i just grab a character and start killing every damn thing, build up tyhis gigantic tank and just hammer slam/spit/snipe/etc everything in my damn way, but can actually play this game more like an rts and build a army from little to nothing.

 

What makes minion effective is their numbers; thats what the purpose in a general is basically about, "Strength in numbers." I would happily buy DG2 if, and if they continue the minion system and not just some damn pet or nothing at all. That was the only thing that got me interested in the first place, Queen was just the selling point.

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March 5, 2010 9:19:49 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

9. Meta-gaming rewards

A successful career should reflect not just in winning-stats but in playing benefits, too. Currently, we only have favor points, which is a start. Far more interesting would be a skill-tree for the player, similar to the skill-trees for demigods, which would provide permanent effects in all games. That's one idea incoorporated very successfully by LoL btw., which adds to motivation. E.g. in addition to favor points, a player earns XP. And once he levels up he can distribute skillpoints to strengthen his character. And in case you put a point in a wrong place, you could always buy respecs with favor points.

10. Get a larger player base

I suspect that LoL managed to get a large player base simply because it's completely free. Sure, there's a real-cash based shop, but everything inside can indeed be aquired for free simply by playing well. HoN also has a large player base, however that might change once the free beta phase is over.

Anyway, without a large player base matchmaking will take too long and it's nearly impossible to automatically create evenly balanced teams. (Not like anyone has to be told to sell their game well)...

 

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March 6, 2010 9:42:40 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I think the way they originally wanted minions to work was you purchased each one. I remember their were a lot of things found out about the generals through Achievements and such.

Each DG had an ability to generate gold:

QoT: Money Tree
LE: Hand of Extortion (Steal mula)
Oak: Beneficiary
Sedna: Abundance

LE also had an achievement tht was 'I love catapultasouruses for buying a certain number of Catapultasauri. (Link is dead now )

So it seemed to me that originally or whatever generals were supposed to buy the normal minions and help push towers and such.

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March 6, 2010 2:00:29 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Teseer,
I think the way they originally wanted minions to work was you purchased each one. I remember their were a lot of things found out about the generals through Achievements and such.

Each DG had an ability to generate gold:

QoT: Money Tree
LE: Hand of Extortion (Steal mula)
Oak: Beneficiary
Sedna: Abundance

LE also had an achievement tht was 'I love catapultasouruses for buying a certain number of Catapultasauri. (Link is dead now )

So it seemed to me that originally or whatever generals were supposed to buy the normal minions and help push towers and such.

This false under the category of being halfed ass.

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March 6, 2010 2:31:46 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

falls*

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March 6, 2010 2:54:58 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

I'm not going to catch you.

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March 6, 2010 7:17:23 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Aroddo,


Anyway, without a large player base matchmaking will take too long and it's nearly impossible to automatically create evenly balanced teams. (Not like anyone has to be told to sell their game well)...

 

Some people do have to be told to support their game well after they "finish" developing it. *cough* GPG *cough*

GPG Employee #1:  That Brad guy from Stardock called... sayed Demigod's balance is still really crappy.  Apparently, every strategy for every build for every character you play just gets some super powered item called the Heart of Life, so he wants us to nerf it.

GPG Employee #2:  Sounds like too much work... I'll just remove it.

#1: Can't do that... Brad will get pissy if you just delete it.  Just make it super expensive so no one can buy it anymore but they can't say we just got rid of it.

#2: Good idea!  Then we won't have to rebalance it again if we don't get it right the first time... hate dealing with that shit.

#1: Speaking of which, apparently Brad was whining that like 90% of the items in the game don't get used.  He told me that most of the items in this game are "as useless as Tom Cruise on a honeymoon" whatever that means.

#2: Hmmm... well, if I make an honest attempt to balance them I might mess up and make them too good.  Then they'll get abused, which is much worse than them not getting used in the first place.  Then I might have to spend time rebalancing them, and you know how much I love writing code.  How bout i just give some tiny, inconsequential buffs to a couple of items so it looks like we're trying?

#1: I like it!  One other thing... seems you forgot to put a chase attack on the Torch Bearer.  What would it take to fix that?

#2: Damnit... I'm going to have to spend a few hours getting a new animation set up for that...

#1: So what you're telling me is its supposed to be the way it is?

#2: Ummmm... yes, yes I am.

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March 6, 2010 7:20:51 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Lmao. That made my night.

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March 6, 2010 7:34:38 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Honestly when I read guides that said heart of life costed 4k I was like wtf are they smoking?

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March 7, 2010 11:20:08 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

cool ideas. and you pay for them ok? yeah that game will be awesome!

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March 14, 2010 8:51:35 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

dont make dimigod II! just upgrade dimigod, fix the blance issues and add new dimigods, no point im makieng a second one unless you just want to make money

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March 17, 2010 3:15:05 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

So, they develop a game with horrible glitches that completely destroyed the gameplay and now you are hoping they make a 2nd version of it? LMAO!!!

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March 17, 2010 10:05:15 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

hey, cut them some slack. give them some time to analyze how they managed to fuck up a perfectly good game and how to make the game attractive to a larger crowd than this miserable audience.

i read in the stardock report that 70% (or so) of all buyers never even attempted to play online - which might hint at the possibility that it was a) perceived as a single player game and didn't have enough single player content.
admirably efficient: they appealed to the wrong crowd and managed to shortchange them in one go. oh, and the "right" crowd got turned off by the teeny weeny connection issues.

it's a bit sad ... they graphics and the effects are a work of art ... it's mesmerizing just watching the demigods in slow motion. surreal battlefields, brilliant music ... and yet it barely gets a mention when people talk about moba style games. talk about how to turn gold into lead  ...

 

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March 18, 2010 12:18:04 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Aroddo, I can't speak for everyone else but for me personally the connection issues aren't and never have been a big issue.  Stardock stepped up and fixed someone elses mistakes and for that I'm always going to be a devoted customer and be favorable to buying anything they develop or publish... unless they're publishing something from Gas Powered Games of course.

GPG came up with an game with amazing potential that could of been one of the best games of all time, but unfortunately they fucked up the endgame pretty bad.  How long did it take for them to fix a few lines of lua script for Sedna's High Priest healing bug?  How long did it take for them to implement a community fix for the TB auto attack?  Did any of them play test the QoT buff that was actually a nerf?  How long will it take them to implement the bug fix mod that a demigod community member created on his own?

It would have taken a minimum amount of effort to make their game A LOT better... and now the DG lobby is lonely and the fact that a lot of players got frustrated with GPG's neglect of the game has a great deal more to do with that than GPG or SD realizes IMO.

Yes, I'm a bitter, whiney troll.  Don't worry, I'll be gone completely as soon as Starcraft 2 comes out.  Oh man, can't wait to play a game made by people who actually have a passion for making their game the best it can possibly be.  Yeah, I know... Blizzard is a huge company that can actually afford to put some money and effort into supporting their games, but I wonder how they got where they are?

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March 18, 2010 1:46:39 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Demigod 2 would be the tits bananas.

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