This week's Fallen Earth questions dealt with faction contacts, mutation paths, skills, crafting, PvP loot and a promise to release more footage and information from the upcoming GDC event in February 18-22 at San Francisco:
This week we're finishing up Kaibab Forest, starting some polish work on the Plateau, giving the tutorial another pass-through (needs more explosions), and starting the process of getting ready for GDC. We're going to be at GDC doing interviews and such, so there should be a good amount of footage and information coming out of it.
I'm hoping to schedule our PvP battle for this week or next; currently our front end is going through some major revisions and I'd rather wait to do it after the revisions since that will give us an excellent chance to test out the new systems. We've been putting some work into making 3rd person combat more fun and making mutations more intuitive to use, so it should be interesting to see how things turn out.
On to the questions!
1. Will all main faction contacts, after Sector 1, be in PvP areas only, or will there be some in non-PvP areas too?
Factions will be both in PvE and PvP zones. They'll have different activities in each, but you can do just fine sticking to PvE areas.
2. You've released some info on the mutation paths most of the six main factions favor. Will the Neutral factions favor anything in particular?
Nope, the neutral factions (Franklin's Riders and the Bankers) aren't much into mutations, though they are good at other skills. For example, Franklin's riders are pretty good at Athletics, doing so much running around. Neither of the neutral factions are really combat-oriented, so don't expect them to be killing machines in terms of skills.
3. When do we get the other half of the good/bad/ugly skills per faction list?
When I'm sure they all work in the way intended and are balanced.
4. Could you please clarify whether players can find / purchase individual recipes for crafting in Fallen Earth? In the Feb 7th, 2007 QotW it is stated that "Characters do not learn individual recipes in Fallen Earth; instead they learn groups of recipes called Knowledges," but in the Sept 12, 2007 QotW, you talk about characters obtaining recipes directly. Did something change between these dates, or are you still talking about knowledges in the Sept 12 QotW?
Slip of the tongue...or finger. Whatever. Characters still get recipes in groups by learning Knowledges.
5. Will players drop loot when they die in a PvP zone? It could just be a few random items in your inventory, it doesn't have to be everything you're carrying. This would provide a small reward for victories other than the intangible benefits and also make the PvP zones more risky and exhilarating.
We're actually investigating some ideas along these lines currently. Regardless of what we come up with, you won't be able to take people's equipped gear or any "primary gear" (clothes, weapons, etc). Components, ammunition, etc are more what we are looking at, and we're looking at a system where the amount you can take from someone is directly proportional to the amount of lootable items you are carrying, so the more you risk, the more you get as reward.
6. When you guys get your graphics in order, could you have a special day for screen shots? For instance, Screen Shot Mondays, Question-of-the-Week Wednesdays, and Fiction Fridays?
Maybe, but doubtful. It will likely go back to alternating Questions of the Week and Pictures of the Week due to time constraints. The art department is real busy these days.
7. What's the Armadillo Club?
The first rule of the Armadillo Club is you don't talk about the...wait, never mind. The Armadillo Club is what a certain group of NPC's refer to themselves as. It has to do with an attempt to emulate a way of life from before the Fall. Not a very successful attempt, but an attempt nonetheless.
8. Since the Vistas and Travelers aren't factions that are heavy on mutation use, what exactly will these two factions excel in that will allow them to be a fair match for a mutation user?
There are plenty of non-mutation skills that are the equal of mutations. We scale all skills and abilities along the same lines, so a 50th level mutation and a 50th level special Melee attack are of roughly equivalent power, they'll just do different things. A character without mutations can keep up with one that has mutations, they'll just be strong in different areas.