Would removing levels be an improvement?

Discussion in 'Future Fallout Game Discussion' started by MasterworkStone, Feb 23, 2017.

Considering the following, would removing levels be an improvement?

  1. Yes

    6 vote(s)
  2. No

    23 vote(s)
  1. MasterworkStone

    MasterworkStone Wasteland nobody

    Jul 9, 2016
    Someone jokingly said to me that Fallout doesn't need levels, but that got me thinking, is that really such a bad idea?
    I think it could work.

    You'd have alternate ways to obtain perks and skill points, like have some quests reward you with skill points, and there'd some kind of vending machine that you can buy perks from, but not all perks can be bought, some perks are quest rewards.

    Other than it being an alternate way to play your character, it also comes with the advantage of no level scaling, meaning that dungeons(?) can have a set difficulty instead of changing to match your level.
    No weapons become obsolete because enemies never get any tougher, that low level raider spawn will stay low level, you'll never have to risk going into something late only to find out your favorite weapon(s) aren't good enough anymore.
  2. Mr Fish

    Mr Fish ...I Remember...

    Sep 11, 2010
    Alternatively they could just balance their fucking games and get rid of health/armor/damage scaling.

    Hell, I wouldn't mind more... Realistic? Damage, where every weapon is useful in some way and for health to be completely fixed to what your Endurance is (as well as if you have the Life Giver perk). Equipment is what would determine how powerful you are and if want to RP as a character who doesn't use the beefiest armor out there then that should be fine and the game shouldn't force you to engage with enemies that are so dangerous that it requires such gear but it may lock off certain paths for you if you do so.

    But leveling should definitely still be in the game. Quest perks are fine for smaller things like being able to skin gecko's in Fallout 2 for some extra cash. But need I remind everyone of the absolutely overpowered perks that were in Old World Blues and Point Lookout? And what if the perks which are force onto you doesn't fit your character? What if you want the game to be fair and balanced but because you get too many perks forced onto you you eventually become overpowered?

    I don't like being 'forced' to gimp myself just for the sake of balance. It should be an option. With a leveling system I can decide that I don't want the combat to become too damn easy and pick a more support role perk. With forced perks you don't really have a choice. Especially not if it is the first time playing the game, then you have no idea what will be forced onto you.

    Leveling is also a way for you to progress your character, to decide what ways you want them to evolve. But quite frankly I'd prefer it if we were given the 'option' to start the game at level 10 or something. I've never liked that in RPG's where I have a character in mind and I can't fully play it until I've leveled up a bunch first. To me it makes it seem like my character has done nothing in his/her life but sit with his/her thumb up his/her ass.

    And a vending machine? Ew. Simply ew. There is absolutely no reason for perk selection to be restricted to a world object. Depending on the lore and where the game is set you could always have some sort of new perk-esque stuff that works in the way tonics in Bioshock worked. Where "vending machines" have their own selection of bonuses that you can choose from but restrict it so that the player can only get a certain amount of them (preferably a low amount, like 5, or fuck it, it can depend on your Endurance just like implants) and of course you can't change them. You pick one, you're stuck with it. But regular perks should still be in the game. This thing would be kind of an alternative to implants.

    As to exp and skill points. Well if we 'have' to change the system again, first off we need actual skills back... Secondly, I'd like far more skills and sub skills, where as we use them we may get a little increase in them occasionally (learn by doing). Thirdly, I'd like for exp levels to handle perks only. As you do quests and complete certain challenges like FNV had you would get skill points, ala Deus Ex.

    But I'm fine with the usual exp leveling up giving skill points and perks every other level (preferably every third, but make perks far more beefier).

    I don't see the need to reinvent the wheel constantly, I'd prefer polishing up something that already works and once it is in stable state then start experimenting a little and flesh out from the already established system. Like keeping the old skill system (1-100) but experiment with it so that 1-50 is general skill and then it splits off into subskills for 51-100 which means you might need to put 400 skill points in Guns if you want to be a true Gun Nut.

    And I don't see any good coming from removing the leveling system. Fallout is already so neutered from RPG elements, what good could possibly come from neutering it even further? Oh, right, money...
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  3. Arnust

    Arnust Maybe you've seen it, maybe, in a dream...

    Feb 2, 2016
    Well that'd be just going for the Action RPG part, with even less RPG.

    Not inherently bad, I love Action RPGs, but it should be a GOOD one. And it wouldn't.

    Tyranny did that for the most part iirc
  4. Dr.Fake

    Dr.Fake First time out of the vault

    Jan 13, 2017
    No skills, no levels, what's next, no perks? Of course it will be great.....as a First Person Shooter. Anyway, I hate bullet sponges, but there're too many ways to fix it. Some people just double weapon damage, and some people give npc little health. Some people make them bleed to death. Some people re-balance the whole game.
  5. a721402

    a721402 Played FPS for decades still suck at it.

    Mar 29, 2016
    Unless it will work like the Shadowruns series and use engine other than Gamebryo and handle by developers other than Bethesda, i don't think remove level will make Fallout better.
  6. PlanHex

    PlanHex Useless layabout oTO Moderator Orderite

    Nov 4, 2007
    There's plenty of good deep RPG systems without levels, but I'd say both Perks and skill points are very important to Fallout's systems (because they're too popular if nothing else) and removing levels leads to separating them into separate level up systems or different pools or whatever and would likely be very messy.

    Though it would be interesting to see a system where you only get skill points and then could buy perks using those points. I don't recall seeing something like that in practice. Would probably be a bitch to balance.
  7. a721402

    a721402 Played FPS for decades still suck at it.

    Mar 29, 2016
    Shadowruns series(or at least the Return and Dragonfall) could a good example of it, you use karma to level up your skill and you can only acquire it after finished a quest or side objective, although you will acquire perk automatically once your skill are high enough.
  8. PlanHex

    PlanHex Useless layabout oTO Moderator Orderite

    Nov 4, 2007
    That's not what I meant.
    I mean that instead of getting perks automatically as you level up a skill, you would have to buy them separately, like if in the new Shadowruns you wouldn't get the special attacks and other perks from levelling weapon skills, but could pick and choose which of these perks to buy separately from a list with availability based on skills and attributes.

    Or, more specifically, if in Fallout 1 you could buy Sniper for X SPs as soon as you meet the requirements of 8 PE 8 AG 80% small guns. Here X would be something large you'd have to save up for, like 100 or something.
    Sniper/Slayer would probably be too broken to fit in such a system though, and maybe perks would need to be less varied and interesting compared to FO1/2 to properly balance it, thus defeating the entire point...
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  9. naossano

    naossano Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 19, 2006
    I wouldn't mind a soft level cap. Once you reach too much levels, you become invincible and the game cease to be challenging. (in any game of the series). On the other hand, an hard cap would mean you cease to level up, which feel less rewarding. I would be ok to only raise hit points and untagged skills once you get past the soft level cap.
  10. Jogre

    Jogre It's all JO'Ger now

    Oct 25, 2015
    A good RPG needs to allow you to customise your character. That means you need to be able to place skills/perks/whatever at certain points. Making skills and perks quest rewards takes away from the players input in to there own character. So you need to have player progression of some kind, whether gaining "karma" points, or levelling up.

    One thing I don't like about Fallout's levelling up system, is that it follows the classic RPG formula of having you level up by killing enough things. This kind of level up system doesn't really work IMO, as it heavily favours combat type-characters, in that stealth and science characters will have less chances to progress AND that it makes little sense for you to become better at speech/science as a result of shooting your gun.

    I personally prefer other types of levelling up. For example, how VTM Bloodlines rewards you for quests not kills(And in some quests even gives you more if you go the pacifist route, since you raise less attention to yourself). Another level-up system I like is the Underrail "Oddity" system, where you gain EXP for finding historical relics out in the world, because as you find them, you learn from them.
    • [Like] [Like] x 8
  11. 5545Trey

    5545Trey Underground Deviant

    Jun 25, 2014
    No. There are ways to improve Fallout's leveling without removing it all together. JO'Geran has a few good examples.
  12. Juza The Cloud

    Juza The Cloud Nanto Goshasei

    Jun 3, 2015
    In a more role play centric modern fallout unique perks could be obtianed only through the players interaction and be specific to factions and npc type. Say help out a vendor npc and learn how to sell some useless junk for some more caps at a specifc vendor/faction/location. Help a techy npc and learn to hack computers a little better or how to craft energy weapon ammo. Lern a skill or perk that is relevent to the encounter/quest and instead of leveling up stats have DT back on equipment and make weapons breakable again. Have "higher level" enemies simply have better equipment and maybe unique perks from being in a raider gang which would allow them to say shoot more damage or move and reload faster or something to reflect difficulty.
  13. ThatZenoGuy

    ThatZenoGuy Residential Zealous Evolved Nano Organism

    Nov 8, 2016
    Frankly I think Fallout 2 did it best.

    An absolute fuckton of levels, which gets harder and harder to reach each time.

    Perks every 3 or so levels.

    Skills can get up to 300 (IIRC?).

    If you want to be 'super mega unstoppable badass', sure, spend a year grinding that guy to level 100 or whatever.

    I liked how in Fallout 2, despite my character being blatantly overlevelled, and in the best gear, with 100% crit chance, and nearly perfect special (I love minmaxxing my special in fallout. DX), I still barely stood a chance against a simple enclave squad armed with SIDE ARMS.
  14. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    No offense but this is a stupid idea. Skill points, perks and levels are an abstraction of progress and improvement. Buying perks and getting skill points from quests is a non sensical abstraction that only works on dumb shooters.
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  15. CaptJ

    CaptJ The Rival of Roquefort Hall

    Jan 19, 2016
    Compared to the system in FO4, yes, I think that it is an improvement. That doesn't mean that I think that it is good.

    What about have hidden achievements for quests like "retrieve X thing without killing"?
  16. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    THe best way to remove level scaling is to never implement it to begin with. Just makes some zones high level and let the players balance risk vs reward of going into those underleveled. Even JRPGs know this.
    • [Like] [Like] x 1
  17. MasterworkStone

    MasterworkStone Wasteland nobody

    Jul 9, 2016
    None taken, I knew that before I posted it.

    But unlike some have assumed was the point of the idea, this was not thought of to deal with level scaling, that was just a side effect, the main idea was how the game would be/work without levels.
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2017
  18. CaptJ

    CaptJ The Rival of Roquefort Hall

    Jan 19, 2016
    Level scaling is way for them to pretend that it is an RPG without putting actual consequences to your build.
  19. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    I think it's a bad idea to give more EXP for doing quests in any speficic way. That just tells the player they are playing the game wrong if they decide to role play the "not ideal" path. Better to handle that in material quest rewards changing logically and the story being affected by your actions.
    • [Like] [Like] x 2
  20. 0wing

    0wing Все умрут, а я волномут

    Mar 23, 2015
    Forgot about the thread so bad...
    The whole quest reward system should begone, like "you have to go back" begone and reworked. First, clear distinction between skill categories (combat & civil is a good start) could work better than lowering XP rewards for not "perfect" paths. Second, material rewards would matter in a world where money is hard to come by and equipment is no different, which is kinda relevant to Fallout world, at least for low levels and start settlements. Casino issue can be fixed with limited caps quantity and more aggressive policy in casinos regarding winners.

    I'd say not every quest should be XP-rewarded at all, simple FedEx stuff sure not a brainer for example and so, no progression.

    Still though, can't fully agree with the post either, since mediocrity is still mediocrity and shouldn't be supported. When some specific skillset could win you a solution with less wasted effort and actually puts them in use, it should be rewarded. This "everyone is equal" thought is destructive and lead us to Fallout 3 & 4.
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2017