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Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Mon Jul 25, 2016 3:52 pm
by BiteyFerret
These are just my thoughts on the current stealth mechanics and where I feel it could use some tweaks, please don't read this as any sort of harsh criticism. If the issues are an intended part of the game then that's that. :)

So, having spent a number of hours sneaking about, there were a couple of things with the current stealth system that eventually made me just throw caution to the wind and sprint everywhere in plain sight, using the hide to reset guard aggro once I reached my destination:

[*] the sight meter fills up as you move, even if the guard is not looking your way. With many of the guards having timed patrol routes you often only have a small window where you can actually sneak behind them before they turn around and spot you, so having to constantly stop (or sneak even more slowly) makes that window even tighter. The second rat you meet is especially bad on the way back, you barely have time to reach the box and hide in it before it turns around[/*]
[*] there's no distinction between "the meter is growing because you are moving" and "the meter is growing because you are in plain sight". The correct reaction for case A is to stop moving. The correct reaction for case B is to keep moving. Not knowing which one to take is frustrating[/*]

I can see a few tweaks that could help alleviate these, should they be considered issues worth addressing.

[*] have a different visual indicator for "you're moving too fast" and "you are in plain sight". Maybe make the sight meter have a red outline for the latter? Alternatively, a change that would make this superfluous,[/*]
[*] get rid of the sight meter growth when sneaking out of line of sight entirely. We are already moving at a snail's pace when sneaking, having to repeatedly stop (or move even slower) feels unnecessary. This way a sight meter would mean "you're seen, hide/bolt!" and no meter would mean you're sneaking around properly. Alternatively, [/*]
[*] the previous implementation, but only when you're wearing the Thief's Set. I was surprised that wearing it didn't seem to improve stealth in any way (I was half expecting it to let you move at full speed when stealth, to be honest). This way you've already Done The Time and explored everywhere the hard way, have some quality of life to make the retreads easier[/*]

And while on that subject, does night time actually make you harder to see at all? Instinctively I had assumed that guards would barely be able to see a foot in front of their nose at night, but nope, the courtyard at night is still quite perilous to traverse. If it does help I did not notice it.

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 11:09 am
by Mr Whiskers
I agree with most of the above, particularly the "night not helping stealth issue" but then rats do have night time vision ^^

I ended up sprinting everywhere not caring about the guards and playing mostly by day since it was easier to see, the NPCs were awake and night didn't seem to have an effect on stealth.

It's just my thoughts here but maybe the guards' awareness level should be harder to raise but then when alerted they wouldn't as easily end their hunt and perhaps even look around in hiding spots ?

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 6:09 pm
by Fluke
I'll have to agree with what's been said about ignoring stealth and just sprinting about.

I was just trying to figure something earlier, and just threw caution to the wind and started running past all the guards. Once you have an idea where you can hide, it's just easier to run all over the place and lose the guards afterwards. It pretty much breaks the idea of stealth for a majority of the game with the guards being as useless as they are.

I think there needs to be an increase in difficulty; maybe some guards could be armed with crossbows who shoot on sight, or made more deadly somehow?

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Fri Jul 29, 2016 1:24 pm
by DarnHyena
I do agree to some extent. notably with the costumes. apart from the suit of armor slowing you down, I haven't really noticed any other effects from wearing a full costume [aside from the health boost and certain characters thinking your someone else]

As for the guards, do keep in mind this little area would probably only be like, the first level in the full game, so I'm sure there will be harder enemies to sneak around eventually later on

That aside, I still agree with the part about night time needing to have an effect on the visual range of the guards.

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 5:42 pm
by fakenina
Hi everybody, thanks so much for your thoughtful observations and suggestions. I'm compiling a list of all of your comments to go through with Seith.

A few of your suggestions are at early stages of implementation (*cough* crossbow Rats), and all of your feedback is going to be invaluable as we continue development. Please continue to post any other ideas you have - we are reading them all.

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Wed Aug 03, 2016 9:11 pm
by Boolean
I have some thoughts on this.

I like the idea of a separate indication that you are in their sight. I think just having a little eye symbol appear in or just outside of the stealth meter should be enough indication that you're being watched.

Also, I dislike how the stealth meter can move to the edge of the screen. I do like how it moves to indicate where the enemy is, but I dislike how it moves to the far edges of the screen. I think it should still move, but refrain from moving beyond an invisible circle or oval in the center of the screen - this way the meter isn't too far out of view, but still points in the enemies direction.

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:49 am
by Fluke
FakeNina wrote:A few of your suggestions are at early stages of implementation (*cough* crossbow Rats)
Bring 'em on! ;)

For some reason, I just thought of a situation where a rat it is pointing his crossbow at Tilo and giving the Dirty Harry "do you feel lucky" speech, only for Tilo to be clearly able to see that the crossbow isn't loaded. Anyway..

One thing regarding stealth that's always seemed a bit odd, is that you can get out of a creaking chest with a guard pretty much next to you, and he doesn't notice if he's not directly facing it. Maybe if you just climb out of a chest then (dependent on range) it could increase the guard's awareness indicator, but if you held down the sneak trigger/button, then you'd climb out more slowly without adding anything to the indicator.

Re: Thoughts on the current stealth system

Posted: Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:02 pm
by fakenina
Ah, interesting!!