Are your survival skills honed?
As time flies past us, we're continuing to make great progress. We set a goal of having all paper design completed by the end of October and we’re pretty darn close to that. Last month, we flew in many of the outside writers and designers for a 4-day table read. It was an amazing process and allowed us to really get in sync on the overall flow of the game. Each level had some takeaway notes and modifications, but overall, we are very happy with the progress we've made. You will be happy to hear that we reviewed the vision document again at that meeting, and we are right on course with delivering what we intended.
On Friday of next week (December 14th), we will kick off Ask a Dev Week on our forums. Starting on the following Monday, our team will check out the posts and answer some of the top questions each day. We will have our internal team available and some of the outside writers and designers to answer questions. It couldn't be a better time as we are now comfortable with our attribute and skills list. So without further ado…
Attributes and Skills Breakdown
One of our favorite elements from the original Wasteland was the vast number of skills available to your party. By carefully selecting your skill breakdown for each character, you could create a bad-ass party of Rangers who were able to solve puzzles or challenges in multiple ways. We knew this was going to be a focal point for Wasteland 2. The following is an overview of our current thoughts on the attributes and skills system in Wasteland 2.
First, here is the list of attributes you can expect to find in Wasteland 2. Attributes are the starting values for your character traits. These are established when you create your character and can be different for each member of your party. Attributes are all passive, meaning that they won't be actively used in the world to solve issues.
When we began designing the skills, we started with the systems in Wasteland 1. We immediately removed any skills that we didn't feel were going to be represented well in the level designs. Each skill had to be something that was going to be used throughout the game. All skills that remained would need to be designed into multiple areas to make the cut. This in no way implies that all skills are used equally. Some skills are used in rare circumstances in Wasteland 2 and finding these uses brings an appropriate reward.
Each starting skill has a formula that is derived from up to 3 attributes based on what would be necessary to be proficient in that skill. So initially, where you place your attribute points will determine the starting value of that skill. A character’s skills can be increased by leveling up, using that skill, and through specific items equipped on the character. For example, our current formula for Pick Lock is [10 + (1*Perception) + (2*Expertise)]. Depending on your starting attributes, your initial skill in Pick Lock can vary greatly.
In order to make something happen in the world, you will need to use the proper skill. Wasteland 1 allowed players to use strength and perception. We wanted to keep this functionality so we created skills for these; Brute Force and Examine. In future updates, we will go into more detail on many of these skills.
You will need to make tough decisions on where to spend your precious skill points as you trek through the Wasteland. There is no single "best" strategy as it depends on your play style. Some skills you might want only one character to focus on, while other skills might be better to have on multiple characters. We are committed to making a heavily replayable game so you can be sure that experimentation with different strategies will yield interesting results.
And to close out the update, here is a sweet little portrait to whet your appetite. I'd like to introduce you to one of the Wasteland raiders, a nasty resident of Los Angeles.
Chris Keenan - Designer/Producer