Psychochild's Blog

A developer's musings on game development and writing.

7 April, 2006

Weekend Design Challenge: Consequences
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 1:00 AM

Today’s challenge will be short, but it should require a lot of good thinking. I might re-use the format of this challenge in the future if it proves interesting enough.

Assume you have a typical fantasy swords-and-sorcery RPG. You can reference whatever game you’re familiar with.

You are the designer on the game, and are charge with balancing the game. Your idea is to not allow any single class (or group of skills) be used by more than a relative portion of the player population. For example, if you have 4 classes, no more than 30% of the characters can be from one specific class.

Discuss the consequences from this design decision. First order consequences are obvious, so don’t focus on those. (For example: players can’t choose the class they want, so they might not want to play the game.) Focus on second order and beyond considerations. (For example: the game system might assume that a class will have a low percent of users, such as a “rogue” class with very situation-specific abilities.)

For bonus points, discuss the problems of doing this before launch as opposed to making this type of change when the game is live.

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