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The L.U.R.K -1.1 debacle

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Question What are your thoughts on the changes made to Artifacts in LURK -1.1
Answers
I like the changes, they make the game better/more realistic
I think Holden is on the right track, but artifacts still need more importance
They should have left the Artifact system intact, or implemetnted something better
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  06:02:28  23 June 2012
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surgy
(Senior)
 
On forum: 03/25/2007
 

Message edited by:
surgy
06/23/2012 8:28:27
Messages: 119
The L.U.R.K -1.1 debacle

I'm sure many of you are well aware of all the controversy over some major changes made in the latest version of LURK, most notably the properties and usage of Artifacts. Meaning you can no longer equip artifacts in your belt, though they still have a vague description of containing some unique properties. But for all intensive purposes they have been reduced to little more than fancy looking rocks floating about.


LURK advertises itself as a mod that improves and enhances the game while also having a strong emphasis on retaining the original Stalker formula. ( The key components that define what stalker is all about) But contrary to this approach, in LURK-1.1 you will see that one of the most defining and unique features has been totally removed in this somewhat heavy-handed alteration. What bothers me the most is there is no other single component you could take away that would damage the integrity and originality of Stalker more than this change has.


Unsurprisingly, the majority of Lurk's player base did not welcome this change with open arms, in fact, most are disappointed or bitter about not only the change, but the somewhat skewed reasoning behind it. Despite all this, the lead developer Holden, is still holding his ground and attempts to justify his reasoning behind 1.1. are included in the following Blog, which i will try to highlight and illustrate what i and possibly others think is wrong with it.


[QUOTE]

The decision we made to remove artifact attributes has probably caught us more flack then any other decision we've made with L.U.R.K.. I however strongly dispute the standard implementation of artifacts and will continue to abstain from reintroducing them via the standard way.

When I work on L.U.R.K., the core concepts that I consider whenever I do anything to change or add any aspect to the game is balance, depth, and immersion. Each play a role in supporting each other and frequently require compromise in order to achieve the best result. When I looked at Artifacts, I simply could not justify Artifact attributes even when looking at any one of those three concepts alone. When I consider balance, it only serves to hurt the way certain gameplay mechanics interact with each other. For example, the fireball artifact decreases the rate in which you intake radiation. When you stack them, it makes you virtually impervious to radiation and thus eliminates it as a gameplay mechanic. Likewise for 'moonlight' making stamina a near nonexistent consideration. It didn't add more depth or increase gameplay mechanics, it compromised them, and for what?

Looking at it from an immersion standpoint, you think, well attaching these artifacts gives me arbitrary combat benefits that don't really have any rhyme or reason to their supposed scientific properties, and are simply something that you are forced to overlook when observed with any level of scrutiny regarding realism or plausibility even. It sacrifices depth, balance, and immersion and to this day I've yet to understand how it would benefits the game as a whole or subsequently it's vision, especially when you consider that the entire reason S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s roam The Zone is to collect them and sell them for profit, but I digress.

[END QUOTE]



In this blog he claims that the reason for taking it out was because they "Eliminated" a game play mechanic, or relationship between them - But Holden, they only (Totally) eliminate a mechanic if you choose to abuse it, which is subject to the players will. More importantly, the Artifact system "Adds" a game play mechanic in itself, it actually adds several. You are taking away much more from the game than you think you are preserving.

On the subject of "Plausibility" as far as Sci-Fi games go, you will be hard pressed to find a more Plausible technical explanation and adaptation than that of how Artifacts have been presented in Stalker. In contrast to the rest of the game world, Artifacts tie-in almost perfectly from a technical standpoint. Your logic would be better applied to things like Mutants, Psy-attacks, Brain-scorchers and Wish-granters, which are equally, if not more far fetched. With this kind of mentality, we might be at risk of loosing everything that makes Stalker what it is. Are we to expect Stalker to be gradually dumbed down into another generic shooter ?


These types of changes are going against the grain of what Stalker actually is, and if that is your personal desire, then i have no right to challenge that. I'm not posting this in an attempt to change your modding methods, but know that people love Stalker for the "Stalker" in it, not the themes and features already found in hundreds of other FPS titles.
  06:31:48  23 June 2012
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Lyoko774
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 04/09/2007
Messages: 170
Personally I would've liked to see artifact containers implemented, so you'd only be able to pick them up if you had the appropriate container and space in your inventory. This alone would prevent abuse if the economy was balanced right (pfft). Maybe perhaps you'd need some expensive apparatus in order to use their effects? Or just a specific type of suit?
  06:45:24  23 June 2012
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surgy
(Senior)
 
On forum: 03/25/2007
Messages: 119

---QUOTATION---
Personally I would've liked to see artifact containers implemented, so you'd only be able to pick them up if you had the appropriate container and space in your inventory. This alone would prevent abuse if the economy was balanced right (pfft). Maybe perhaps you'd need some expensive apparatus in order to use their effects? Or just a specific type of suit?
---END QUOTATION---




I quite like your Artifact container idea, but as you said, the viability of that would depend purely on a balanced economy, which we know is a joke even in LURK, which strangely claims to have a very intense economic structure, though i have not seen any evidence of it.

I recently modded my game so i get less than half of Lurk's default sale value on goods, yet i can still afford to wipe my ass with roubles. (ouch)
  08:37:39  23 June 2012
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Daemonion
All About Audio
(Resident)

 

 
On forum: 09/27/2011
 

Message edited by:
Daemonion
06/23/2012 8:43:31
Messages: 567
You can post stuff like this on our moddb page, or PM/email me, as well. I'll pass this stuff along to the team and we'll discuss it, but I believe Holden announced that we'd be changing it for 1.2 quite some time ago.


Oh, and that artifact container idea is pretty neat.
  10:52:39  23 June 2012
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Lyoko774
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 04/09/2007
Messages: 170

---QUOTATION---
You can post stuff like this on our moddb page, or PM/email me, as well. I'll pass this stuff along to the team and we'll discuss it, but I believe Holden announced that we'd be changing it for 1.2 quite some time ago.


Oh, and that artifact container idea is pretty neat.
---END QUOTATION---


You guys really should refer to the old Oblivion Lost (not the flippin' mod!!) concepts for some ideas, I've yet to see a mod properly implement artifact containers and the like...
  16:58:32  23 June 2012
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Lord_Santa
>>opinions will differ>>
(Resident)

 

 
On forum: 07/04/2007
 

Message edited by:
Lord_Santa
06/23/2012 17:02:50
Messages: 2594
it would not seem as a daunting task to adjust the properties of the artifacts, in order to balance out gameplay vs. "realism"

if indeed a specific artifact give you a certain percentage of protection against radiation, well then just lower that value of protection and add disadvantages which need to be countered with another specific artifact, and so on

also limit the amount of artifacts being able to be used at any one time (i.e. limit the belt-slots), as well as make ammunition mandatory to have in said belt in order to use it for your weapon

these things I mention have all been implemented in one way or the other in numerous mods, and as to why this has not been taken into consideration in L.U.R.K. is beyond me

simple adjustments to the gameplay mechanics such as these level the playing field immensely, at the same time that it does not sacrifice any of the core aspects of the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. universe

granted, should we follow the lore of A Roadside Picinic, then none of us would have any conceivable (as S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s) idea of what the artifact properties, but then again - there wouldn't be such a huge variety of them either

artifact properties add an extra level of "core cRPG mechanics" to the S.T.A.L.K.E.R. games, in that it adds and subtracts statistical values from the character, thus further adding something unique to the game(s)

in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. games, everything is about balance and finding said balance - it is often up to the player to weigh the pros and cons of the items found, be they weapons, artifacts or other

as a modder it is fully possible to set up a boundary for how much the player is able to abuse just about every aspect of the game, especially regarding artifacts

by completely removing the properties of artifacts and at the same time having such an imbalanced economical structure to start with, the whole point of collecting said artifacts seem rather moot

if I as a S.T.A.L.K.E.R. can collect 5-6 artifacts and then sell them off for a fortune, then what need have I to stay in the Zone? why would I wish to search for more, if my sole purpose is to enter the Zone and become rich?

to blatantly state that all S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s purposes is to collect and sell off artifacts in order to make profit removes any sense of role-playing aspects from the player

certainly that would seem the main driving force behind most S.T.A.L.K.E.R.'s, but considering the availability and price-range of artifacts, surely this task would be rather swift to accomplish

each player that is in the Zone (emphasis on player) have their own agenda, apart from the main story-line of the game - this is not a linear experience, in that you rush through the story-line to get the same ending every time, but instead there are numerous side-missions and opportunities to influence the internal politics of the Zone, etc.

it is in each player's own agenda that the depth of these games lie, whether they want to become rich, or search for the hidden meaning of the Zone's existence, or to become the most feared S.T.A.L.K.E.R. - or simply to co-exist within the Zone's boundaries

to remove this aspect/perspective of the game, is to remove the very essence of the game, as well
  17:04:04  23 June 2012
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LoNer1
Настоящий Cталкер, Русская Версия
(Resident)

 

 
On forum: 10/23/2009
Messages: 1890
I just implanted my artefacts into lurk and played with that, Kyle_k_ski has screens of me playing with PPx+LURK

If i dont like a mod, i change it. simple as that!
  18:01:31  23 June 2012
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{imperialreign}
Звуковой Шаман
(Resident)

 

 
On forum: 10/29/2008
Messages: 3075

---QUOTATION---
I just implanted my artefacts into lurk and played with that, Kyle_k_ski has screens of me playing with PPx+LURK

If i dont like a mod, i change it. simple as that!
---END QUOTATION---



The benefits of being a modder, eh?

Besides, the way I look at things - it never fails to amaze me that the user community throws a shit-fit whenever there is an aspect of a mod they don't like. Whether it's from a mini-mod or a massive overhaul mod . . .

Users seem to forget that modders, and modding teams, are working on a project that is essentially their "interpretation" of things. We don't do this work for the users, or the community (in most cases), but instead for ourselves first.

If a larger team makes a decision to impliment or cut a specific "feature," that's their choice - not the user's. If a user doesn't like it, either fix it yourself after the mod is released, or find another mod to enjoy that's more to your liking. Simple as that. You can't tell me that within the STALKER modding community you can't find another mod that more closely meets one's expectations. There are simply too many projects out there as it is . . . and if you somehow can't find something, the tools are available to put something together yourself. The bigger the mod, the larger the following community, the greater the number of complaints there will be . . . I'm sure once Lost Alpha finally hits the download servers that there will be a gajillion users complaining about "features" that they feel detract from the game, or don't meet their expectations, or don't make their nipples hard or whatever. Mark my words.

As it stands - I fully support any modder who sticks to their guns in making a decision regarding implimentation of any said feature. It's your interpretation, and you're welcome to defend it.
  17:41:26  24 June 2012
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100RadsBar
100RadsBar - Formerly known as LoboTheMan
(Resident)

 

 
On forum: 06/03/2009
 

Message edited by:
100RadsBar
06/24/2012 17:42:24
Messages: 1710

---QUOTATION---
I just implanted my artefacts into lurk and played with that, Kyle_k_ski has screens of me playing with PPx+LURK

If i dont like a mod, i change it. simple as that!

The benefits of being a modder, eh?

Besides, the way I look at things - it never fails to amaze me that the user community throws a shit-fit whenever there is an aspect of a mod they don't like. Whether it's from a mini-mod or a massive overhaul mod . . .

Users seem to forget that modders, and modding teams, are working on a project that is essentially their "interpretation" of things. We don't do this work for the users, or the community (in most cases), but instead for ourselves first.

If a larger team makes a decision to impliment or cut a specific "feature," that's their choice - not the user's. If a user doesn't like it, either fix it yourself after the mod is released, or find another mod to enjoy that's more to your liking. Simple as that. You can't tell me that within the STALKER modding community you can't find another mod that more closely meets one's expectations. There are simply too many projects out there as it is . . . and if you somehow can't find something, the tools are available to put something together yourself. The bigger the mod, the larger the following community, the greater the number of complaints there will be . . . I'm sure once Lost Alpha finally hits the download servers that there will be a gajillion users complaining about "features" that they feel detract from the game, or don't meet their expectations, or don't make their nipples hard or whatever. Mark my words.

As it stands - I fully support any modder who sticks to their guns in making a decision regarding implimentation of any said feature. It's your interpretation, and you're welcome to defend it.
---END QUOTATION---



I agree with you on that.
I did not know anything about modding, but there were some things I wanted to change in Priboi Story to suit my own preferences.
And by learning by doing, Priboi Story Overhaul was born.

I am sure that there are some who don't like my changes to the original Priboi Story, but they are welcome to play the original, or reverting my changes
But it is easier to complain, than doing something about it

I never played LURK though, so I have no idea what it is about.
  18:57:09  24 June 2012
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Steelyglint
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 06/06/2009
Messages: 5171
Almost any implausible thing (like artifacts bestowing amazing powers) is fair game for Science Fiction. There is nothing 'unrealistic' about it because the entire basis of the story is outside the realms of reality. Oddly enough that's why its called 'fiction'.

To remove all of the implausible features from Stalker games would have the player wandering around the exclusion zone with nothing to do, nothing to find, and only the odd shrew, rabbit or sparrow to shoot at - none of which would be attacking at the time.

A suit that would allow you to continue living for more than a few hours after having seen the 'Wish Granter' (which, of course, is implausible so wouldn't be there any way) is not within the current technical capabilities of mankind to manufacture. No-one could venture into that room with the 'hanging' reactor lid without expiring from the radiation sleeting through them.

But that's the whole point of fiction. Making impossible things possible.

.
 
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