As for the hp thing it seems to me that if you maxed your con up to level 15 or so, and you had 160 hp then that would be the max hp you could have, and if you removed con it would lower. Doesn't it seem these skill trees are creating a lot of problems, and the solutions like the filter create more problems. If the only problem with the filter is old chars i would say either do a player wipe or not alter the old chars, instead of letting old characters dictate how the new system is set up. I doubt much has been decided but I wish players heard more about what the immorts are debating.
As far as skill trees causing problems and all that--well, yes, of COURSE accounting for the old characters causes problems. However, a playerwipe would likely lose us half the playerbase--that means half of YOU, half of your friends, half of OUR friends--and we don't want to see that happen. Hence the great lengths to which we are going in order to prevent it.
As far as filter specifics... the current thoughts are:
- not to wipe words. But we DO track how many you know and how many pracs they cost, therefore skills learned after the change will be tracked as learned "later in life."
- to solve the problem of the changeover in terms of hp/mana/move by simply sidestepping the problem altogether. After the changeover, your max hp, max mana, and max move will NOT be steadily rising numbers that go up every time you level. Instead, they will be fluctuating numbers that vary based on your current con, your current dex, etc. There would be a level modifier on top of it as well. With this system, you have to maintain a stat in order to get the benefits from it.
It's worth noting that since stats take a while to fall off when you remove equipment (because of gradual stats) that means that you aren't suddenly at a much lower max hp when you deathtrap or die.
- Will old characters get better learn levels on skills than new chars? Well, they may, but they'll also (I guarantee it) not have as good a set of new skills as the new characters. That's because players simply will not know the system well yet and won't have arrived at "best combinations" yet. So I expect that it will even itself out mostly. We expect that most players will eventually wish to make a new character if they are already high level, in order to take advantage of the new skill sets and abilities.
Some of the other stuff which is currently getting discussed to go in with skill trees: new detective skills, player housing (finally), ownership of animals and objects, numerous craftsman skills that permit the creation of low stat boost items, runic magic, disguises and voice mimicry (yes, people will get 'voices' for when they can be heard but not seen) and many other things.
BUT-- *NONE* of what I just gave above has been completely finalized. For that you need to wait until the next issue of the Legendary Times, when we were planning on spreading it all out for you. We hold off on telling you everything we discuss because we a) don't want to get your hopes up too much and b) don't want to scare you either. MANY of the things we discuss regularly are pie in the sky highly controversial things,and they generally do not make it very far, and there's no sense in scaring players with it.
For example--quite often the following ideas have come up: giving players only say 9 "lives"--after that many deaths, you die permanently. Giving players only ONE life, where death is death. Clanning everyone at level 1. Having tooth decay (I kid you not!). Eliminating inventory as a concept and actually limiting you to two hands. Eliminating levels. Eliminating hp increase at levels, since everyone is really roughly the same in terms of ability to take hits from a large sword. Removing the entire current spell system and wiping all your words and spells, and putting in a new system where nobody can share spells because they are all personal. Having oldstyle equipment automatically update itself from the database upon login. Having players not leave the game when they rent, but instead need to set up defenses to keep them alive until the next gaming session.
I could go on. Yes, all of these have been discussed at least briefly. Yes, they are all scary prospects. Does that mean we wanted to run up to players and say "hey, we're gonna do this!" when the idea first came up? Of course not. We're not going to do that until we have thought carefully about the impact.
In a sense it comes down to whether or not you trust the immortals (whom you have trusted to build a game for you) to continue to maintain and administer that game. Then again, when web pages like Beam's contain clear libel against the immort staff, well, perhaps such trust is hard to come by.
For those who DO trust us, we think that we've got a really fun and interesting game coming down the pike with skill trees, and we hope that you'll enjoy reading about it--in the next LT, and not here on this board.