Destructible procedural NPC bases

Making those Trebuchets matter in PvE.

I realize that such gameplay is actually what PvP offers, but I don’t want to fight hackers.
I want to blow up bases, without being an ■■■■■■■ toward a sentient being.

Those procedural bases are Point of Interests that hold named crafters and bosses, with a lot of treasure inside.

Blowing up more than 50% of the bases substance and killing all of it’s population should cause it to despawn naturally. If however less than 50% of the base is damaged, and at least 1 population left, it should re-build and regenerate along with it’s population.

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As a PvE player, I’d find this really interesting, but I don’t know if the man-hours to program it would be a good investment for anyone but a modder.

That said, one way of implementing it on-the-cheap would be if decayed bases became NPC strongholds that could be attacked. Just imagine having to go up against a massive PvE base that has decayed with Volcano thralls sporting legendary weapons, Silent Legion armor, serpentman & snake arrows and honeycombed T3 walls…

That would be one hell of a fight!

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Larathiel pretty much sums up everything I think about this idea. It would be awesome, and it would probably be too much trouble for the game creators. Basically any non-repeatable content is simply not cost-effective in an MMO. The programmers would spend weeks, maybe even months, creating an NPC base that the players would then reduce to rubble in a matter of hours.

But if the base would always respawn, just like normal thrall camps, you could besiege and raid it again and again, and it would always eventually repair itself. This would simply work as a normal thrall camp, but with added destructible defenses.

The one problem I can see is that NPC bases have a no-build zone around them, and trebuchets require a legal building spot to be placed. This would severely limit the usefulness of siege engines against such NPC camps. This could be solved by removing the no-build restriction from around these camps, but that would mean that once it was destroyed, players could then build on that spot and prevent the NPC fortress from respawning.

The idea has merit. I like it. But making it happen probably won’t be easy.

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Larathiel is a genius.

Converting abandoned player bases to NPC bases. It makes perfect sense.

Get this. Convert the abandoned player thralls into NPC’s.

Piggy back on the purge spawning system for indoor NPC re-population if base isn’t wiped.

Dynamic self-creating content.

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Converting decayed player bases into NPC territory is pretty brilliant. I don’t think they’d particularly need to keep respawning - once destroyed they’re destroyed. Otherwise you’d quickly end up with the map full of immortal NPC camps.

A player besieging and “claiming” a choice location from a playerbase-turned-NPC-camp would be perfectly good gameplay, and it’d not be unbalanced since those locations were deemed acceptable to build in, in the first place. Completely tearing down the base (to remove any claim) is a monumental enough task on its own.

Probably bases under a certain size (in terms of foundation-count) should just decay as normal, we don’t need 2452432 3x2 sandstone huts along Noob River turning into camps after all.

@Halcyon Imagine tearing down a certain troll’s gigantic sprawling sandstone pile with catapults and bombs. That’d be even better than pressing “demolish” on the radial menu (though that was satisfying too).

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Tell me about it.

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This probably won’t ever happen because of technical restrictions.

Funcom just patched it so that the few items that were destructible, are no longer destructible to help save memory on people with lower end machines (consoles, low end of the spectrum PC players).

I spent a good chunk of time trying to reverse this in a mod (since I have a high end PC) only to realize that the blueprint required to make NPC placeables destructible only connects to a tiny percentage of NPC placeables and buildings. 99% of them are just static meshes, and they are done this way because of the performance costs.

There really isn’t even a super great way for a modder to do this either (I’ve already thought about it). One, there is no existing code in the game to STOP placeables from respawning (even if they are destructible, which again most of them are not). I’m not a coder, but I’m all but certain the code injections needed for this would have to be done in C++.

Second, since almost every NPC placeable in the game is a static mesh, a modder would have to create new blueprints for every single placeable, and replace every existing static mesh in the game to these new destructible components.

And then to top it all off, the performance demands would increase on a person’s PC to handle all of the thousands of new destructible objects, and so only a small percentage of players could actually use said mod.

It’s merely changing a player’s abandoned assets to a PvP enabled clan.

That’s it. No AI, no directive. No naddah. It’s just assinging dynamic player content to an attackable state. Has nothing to do with dynamic vs static meshes. What difference in performance does it make if a big base belongs to a human player or a NPC?

The point here is dynamic content.

Furthermore, with the new structure loading system, that shouldn’t even be an issue anymore.

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Oh, I misunderstood what you were asking for. I was thinking you wanted to siege Sepemeru and take it over type deal.

You want to have Funcom create new cities that can be raided. Okay, I can get on board with that, except performance demands yet still. And, it would require overhauling the map locations, places where people have had their buildings built for a year or more.

That’s what your original request calls for. But since the discussion has shifted topics into what Larathiel has suggested, I’m just confused what your overal suggestion is now.

Modding wise,one modder did try to do the building thing, but never did succeed in previous versions.

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I see.

Yeah… Larathiels suggestion is that good. Haha

Completely different approach, same outcome.

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The more I think about this (Larathiel’s idea), the better it sounds. There’d be relatively little work involved (don’t get me wrong, it’d still be A LOT of work, little only refers to work vs gain). And it would open up emergent gameplay like nothing else, leveraging the near endless creativity and time of the community “against itself”. Pretty brilliant really.

Because this:

Would be great. But we’d blow through it in no time (for reference see: Unnamed City, the).

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So the idea of having a certain preset of castle/base blueprints. (Let’s say you build/design 20 different ones, with some crafting stations inside etc.)

Then, you go and identify, say 100 locations in the game world where you could place something. (For starters)

And then you randomly place 1 out of the 20 castles on one of these 100 locations.

This will provide a pretty unique experience for all players. Be fully repeatable across all servers, (Assuming funcom also makes these locations no-build zones)

Same, this idea is sooo profound that I can’t stop thinking about it.

I mean, it even follows the principles of mother nature. The cycle of life and death. Players who have expired, recycle their content back into the ecosystem.

In a system where content will always be consumed faster than it can be produced, this essentially turns consumption into production.
It’s mind blowing.

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this would also solve the loot decay bases. Now that loot is available to whomever could take the base down with seiging. And provide uses for Gods on PVE/PVE-C servers.

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I like the idea of there being npc towns meant for raiding - though I feel the approach of the procedurally built ones using the same method as player building wouldn’t work all that well, echoing multigun on concerns about things like memory usage and cost. Add onto that you can’t quite get the same kind of subtle direction that designing it purposefully can provide. Best case scenario I feel for something like this would be to have the walls of the town be a mix of destructible and static pieces: smaller bits of wall and some towers being static and the gates/longer stretches of wall being a destructible piece but not fully. It wouldn’t disappear entirely but it’d have multiple stages that’d break open/fall away based on a damage percentage. Using stuff like this you can coax a player into targeting the intended spots from visual cues and its layout. You’d have to make it so that the player has to go smashing in though - gate that is never open, archers and stuff up on the walls, etc.

I mean, who couldn’t pass up the opportunity to want to smash through a nice long, imposing wall with your trebuchet?

Sorry to sound negative about this great idea … I think the problem with this would be the bits of the base that are left behind after people have looted what they want.
I think what would happen in most cases is players would expend minimal resources to blow a hole into bases and strip out what they want… this will result in partial bases that can’t be easily destroyed scattered across the map…preventing players from building in those locations unless they expend considerable resources to destroy every block and placeable.
And even if someone took the time to destroy as much as they can see and not just blow up the weakest entry point … there is likely to be bits they miss … the foundations mostly in the ground that are barely seen…etc etc … again as the building is no longer in a decay state so the demolish option clears everything with one click would no longer work as it’s been converted to an ownerless pseudo-PvP raidable base …it’s going to leave bits that can’t be built on.

Edit: and also the troll opportunities this mechanism would open up … sandstone spam across the map that the player then deliberately lets go into decay so it turns into raid-bases. And before someone counters - exclude sandstone - it’s Not that more effort to do the same in t2 stone brick if you are determined to troll.

So, when a building becomes “Decayed”, it is raidable.

  • Then it is raidable for say, 48h (Configurable time by admin)

Then it vanishes.

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This would add a whole new dimension to pve servers, destroying old player bases before they completely decay and looting their stuff sounds great. I also like how it was mentioned above, it would finally give us a reason to summon gods on a pve server.

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