What makes a skill?

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What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Sat Apr 09, 2011 9:46 am

First topic message reminder :

This discussion was birthed from an argument, so the first few posts may appear somewhat harsher toned.

Much of the discussion is based around whether or not "Demonology" should be an independent skill or an expansion to Summoning: the heat of the debate being what defines the core of a skill.

So what do you think makes a skill?



3mpty: Recently split.

I think we disagree on a fundamental level of what a skill is then. For me, different components are enough to make a skill. This is why Ancient Magicks is an additional spellbook, whilst Ranged is a different skill. If you ignore the fact that you require runes for one, and arrows for the other, both Ranged and Magic are the same skill. This is why Crafting, Fletching and Smithing are different skills.

I'm not against umbrella skills, like Combat level, but the umbrella skill cannot be trainable by itself. Otherwise the subsets will make other aspects pointless (like Ruy said). I mean: "yes, if it's only a small addition", such as Crafting having things like weaving, tailoring, etc.

Summoning (something out of nothing)
- - Divination (formally Summoning)
- - Demonology

Mysticism (puppetry)
- - Necromancy
- - Voodoo

Let's just agree to disagree. I'll suggest it, and say "This can either be a skill in it's own right" with the reasons, and "This can be an expanse to summoning" due to similarities in end-goal.

E'yeeahhh, I'm so not sure anymore. Cry

Demonology isn't dissimilar from the Attack skill. You train it by using it, and at milestones you unlock the ability to use better stuff. Like Construction and Dungeoneering, it's "ability to use better stuff" also has a lot of other-skill requirements. At level 1 Demonology you can cite flesh and tier-1 armoured demons; at level 10 you can cite tier-2 armoured demons; and so on. A different skin will have different effects on a demon like armour. You wouldn't use metal-skin for magic-demons, but you can if you feel like it. At less frequent milestones, you also unlock additional forms. Different forms are like different weapons... pilots are swords, wulfs are daggers and djinns are staffs (sort of). These change some base-stats of a demon (including their combat style). At each level, the demon's base stats increase. So at level 2 Demonology your demon is stronger than at level 1, similar to having a little player following you.

I guess my main concern is that I don't see how this would benefit Summoning to be added to Summoning. But then again, now I think of it, not adding to Summoning would probably hurt summoning more. Added to Summoning, it would mean players are still training the Summoning skill even if not using familiars.


Last edited by 3mptylord on Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:04 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Handeath on Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:12 am

But the point of the skill is that you use skills to manifest demons in skins. I guess that could be changed to the stylus (see my posts about making Contracts). Still, the kinds of demons would be interesting to use.

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:35 am

Both magical... sort of. Both focus around followers. Sorry, I just need a rant... I know you meant that comment to be reflective/comparative and not as an opinion, but yeah... let me steam.
Rant:
I personally love skills. The more the merrier. Probably not a good attitude, I'll admit, but it's my attitude none the less. If I can make it a new skill, I will try my best. I don't like copying existing methods, it takes the fun out of it. This is why Zoanthropy didn't use spells, pouches, potions, etc... I refused. I didn't want a summoning expansion, I didn't want a magic expansion, herblore, etc.

I really want to split Magic. It's not specific enough, and the two main categories hinder each other... it doesn't benefit to have them together other than "it's magical, so it's Magic". Poppycock.

This is me light-heartedly ranting to myself, just by the way.

In retrospect, you could argue that Zoanthropy does use pouches and I'm just being pedantic over words. Vessel, pouch, etc. My reasoning is very lore-based. Zoanthropy and Summoning use different kinds of spirits... Zoanthropy is about entrapment of possessive spirits, called numens (real life thing, well, real as in offline... obviously it's still questionably real), whilst Summoning is astral projection and blah, blah, blah. Numens are possessive... you store them in a vessel, and allow them to possess you when desired. Familiars are familiarized... I suppose familiarization and entrapment could just be subsections of summoning, you can either store them in a pouch or provoke them into a vessel. *sigh*
If you want me to make this a Summoning expansion, I probably could. In fact, there are two ways to add this to Summoning... either exactly how it exists in Demonology, just requiring Summoning instead, or to use summoning mechanics.

Demonology is currently spread sheet. Demonology levels along the top, and secondary levels along the side. The secondary level can be one of any number of skills, including Demonology. This creates a vast collection of demons... it's pretty much user-preference to a tee. Replacing Demonology with Summoning would merely mean players have a head start in unlocking the forms... possibly to an extent that there's nothing new to unlock even after the update. Pro: Demons provide a combat means of training Summoning.

However, the cons. This could make it too easy to obtain high-end Summoning effects. A lot of players, similar to other skills, stop training summoning when they reach the effect they need... this would render the Demonology update no more than poison-ivy in Woodcutting, or teleporting to Camelot to use Ice Barrage. In fact, putting Demonology and Summoning together is sort of like putting non-combat and combat magic together. You train Slayer for slayer drops, yes? You want abyssal demons or dark beasts or whatever. This is why you train Slayer. Summoning is like that. It has effects. Summoning is a reward skill. You train Summoning because you want the Terrorbird's special effect, or a Beast of Burden.

At least in my opinion, Summoning is a support skill (like Prayer and Herblore), and not an offence skill (like attack, magic and ranged).

Whether or not Demonology could be in Summoning I don't think is what we should be discussing. It's whether it SHOULD. In writing this post I've come to realize a few things, although my adaptive-self that appeared somewhat up didn't die in the process. For no other reason anymore, I think demons would hurt Summoning unless they become just bog standard familiars.


Last edited by 3mptylord on Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:47 am; edited 2 times in total

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Dark Avorian on Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:42 am

>_> I never disagreed with you on that. I've always thought it should be a separate skill, just think that recognizing the reality and trying to at least in some small way direct it is also a useful thing.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Mon Apr 11, 2011 11:43 am

Hehe, edited it out several edits ago 'cause I remember it was someone else. Tongue

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Handeath on Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:59 am

I define a skill as a distinct ability. Ranged is the ability to use a bow while Magic is the ability to draw power from runes. This is where I think we differ. I think Summoning is the ability to summon beings from other realms, you think it (as Divination) is the ability to summon only familiars.

Remember that Summoning is a combat skill because most familiars can be used in combat, it's a combat support skill, like Prayer. (Side-note: Herblore makes potion for combat, it's no more a combat skill than Cooking.) Thus the effects are a pro when using familars, I think Demons have better combat stats as their pro and weaker effects and Consitution drain as a con. Thus, I view it as an expansion.

Zoanthropy is a seperate skill because it is the ability to bring beings into yourself.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:17 am

Spoiler:
For me, Summoning is entirely spiritual. It's divination... astral projection... psychic medium... ghost whispering... whatever you want to call it. Familiars are familiarized spirits (inb4 the manual says differently)(familiars exist in folklore, it's something repeatedly used in fiction and myths, I would hope Jagex still uses it to mean the same thing Wink)...

It's not that I cannot find similarities between Summoning and Demonology, it's just nothing about Demonology is how I'm imagining Summoning.

Haha, I find your distinction hypocritical if I'm honest. Purely because Zoanthropy involves beings from other realms, it merely uses them differently than in Summoning or Demonology. But you don't distinguish skill by use... otherwise combat companions and special effect companions would be reason enough for Summoning and Demonology to be different. Wink

How does Voodoo or, better, Necromancy fit into Summoning? Necromancy is only puppetry of corpses found in the ground... there's no summoning, there's no other realms. Tongue


Last edited by 3mptylord on Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:10 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Dark Avorian on Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:27 pm

Spoiler:
Honestly, I don't think one can draw a hard line either way. Both sides have their valid points, and honestly neither of your little preconceptions or deeply held beliefs about what "should" constitute a skill matters. Both of you are creating shoddy arguments that I could take apart with a feather duster if I was so inclined.

How does Voodoo or, better, Necromancy fit into Summoning? Necromancy is only puppetry of corpses found in the ground... there's no summoning, there's no other realms.

Because from a game design perspective, the only reason to add Necromancy and Summoning at once is to add flavor, and perhaps slightly different mechanics. Sure, we can argue that Summoning is only spiritual, but at the end of the day, as you said "the manual can change." We could redefine summoning to merely mean anything that summoned an aiding beast. I could frame it as a matter of skill in controlling the beast, and you might grumble, but honestly it's only because you try and force victory in these arguments by framing them in a way that leads to a inevitable conclusion that you are right.

It's not that I cannot find similarities between Summoning and Demonology, it's just nothing about Demonology is how I'm imagining Summoning.

Now, that's all fine and dandy in your own mind, but do realize that when sharing it with the broader community not everything will be shaded with your conceptions of how the game should work. To many, the fact that we are magically summoning helpers to fight alongside us is more than enough to class it as summoning, and it is no different than the consolidation of Crafting's many branches.

Handeath wrote:I define a skill as a distinct ability. Ranged is the ability to use a bow while Magic is the ability to draw power from runes. This is where I think we differ. I think Summoning is the ability to summon beings from other realms, you think it (as Divination) is the ability to summon only familiars.

Um...as 3mpty said this whole arguement you're making seems a bit silly. If skills are distinct abilities, then why is wearing robes classed under the same umbrella as using runes? Why is gem cutting the same as flax spinning? Also, again their is a game mechanics viewpoint to look at. The splitting of Magic is one of the ideas I was convinced of when I first joined these forums. Why should non-combat magic train magic, well of course we can build all the logical arguments we want concerning the fact that training with one manipulation of runic energies will allow you to become more adept at others. Frankly though, we are dealing with a game with relatively ill defined lore and we should all just give it a rest.

Once a suggestion is framed there are three things you can do: 1) Critique the writing, possibly helping with the same, 2) Note problems in balancing and suggest changes to help that, 3) praise or don't praise and leave.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:01 am

Just-woken-up-grouchiness:
This is a discussion Dark, the argument ended when we agreed to disagree.

I don't really get why you feel the need to tell me how a discussion works... I am aware people won't have the same opinion as me, that's what we're discussing... our own opinions. Hah, you say I frame an argument... how exactly does saying "There's not even anything worth discussing here" not just your attempt to control the discussion?

Jeez, a few weeks ago when you were attacking me for having opinions because they seemed like I was implying fact... but now that I'm actually explicitly saying they're opinions you're attacking me again just for having an opinion at all. Having an opinion is not a superiority complex.

We were having a discussion... a different in opinion is a common centre point for discussion.


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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Zectiox on Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:15 am

I think to make skill suitable for runescape it needs to be unique and not something that's similar to some othe skill.. I dont say demonology is to related to summoning I just say it need to be unique, and uesefull to be able to have something for 99 Levels,

It would be quite awesome to come up with a new unique skill for Runescape (which later is putting in-game...) Tongue.. but atm they have cover almost everything that can be "skill"-abled. (there have to be something that havent been "founded" yet, and this have to be founded by us...) Grin
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by MorbiusMonster on Wed Apr 13, 2011 7:25 am

I was thinking of Merchanting skill once.

Any noob can sell stuff or put stuff on the Grand Exchange, but a real entrepeneur can pull strings to get what they want and make sales away from the Grand Exchange. The best merchants are those that can get you to buy almost anything, just Auntie Wainwright; no one has ever walked out of her second hand shop without buying something they never actually wanted.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:17 am

Zectiox wrote:I think to make skill suitable for runescape it needs to be unique and not something that's similar to some othe skill.. I dont say demonology is to related to summoning I just say it need to be unique, and uesefull to be able to have something for 99 Levels

Is Demonology "unique" enough, by your standards? Tongue

It would be quite awesome to come up with a new unique skill for Runescape (which later is putting in-game...) Tongue.. but atm they have cover almost everything that can be "skill"-abled. (there have to be something that havent been "founded" yet, and this have to be founded by us...) Grin

Well, good luck. Wink

MorbiusMonster wrote:I was thinking of Merchanting skill once.

Any noob can sell stuff or put stuff on the Grand Exchange, but a real entrepeneur can pull strings to get what they want and make sales away from the Grand Exchange. The best merchants are those that can get you to buy almost anything, just Auntie Wainwright; no one has ever walked out of her second hand shop without buying something they never actually wanted.


Very interesting. If you can actually make that work, good on you.

I've played in the past with reintroducing Influence, a former skill in RuneScape Classic. The quest point system is replaced with a renown system (that is the same, for all intensive purposes). The higher your renown, the better your discount. This could even be divided among locations, given positive and negative versions (like paragon and renegade, good and evil, pure and chaotic, hero and villain, etc).

I don't think it should be a skill personally just because it's a trading-related skill, but it couldn't effect player-to-player trading (which is most of trading). Although if you can prove me wrong, go ahead. Manipulating NPCs maybe, although I think a skill is perhaps an OTT we of making stores more useful. But manipulating players is something the player (rather than the avatar) can either do or can't do... I wouldn't even know where to begin making Merchanting a player-vs-player skill. Tongue

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Handeath on Wed Apr 13, 2011 12:59 pm

I want to respond to your point, but I feel like our discussion would never end. I suppose that depending on how different we make Demonology (which is technically the study of demons), Broodoo, and Necromancy from Summoning, we can make them different skills. Both our sides have their points, but the outcome depends on the writer.

I guess I think people would better recieve it as an expansion, but you want to make this grand (like many of the suggestions that the TST has done).

Side note, can each summoning book/skill have its own uber familiar?! I'd imagine Summoning would have the Energy Titan, which would be made of blue crystal and shoot lazors! It would be awesome!
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by MorbiusMonster on Wed Apr 13, 2011 6:41 pm

Player to player trading - easy anyone can accomplish that kind of feat

Player owned market trading - takes a little more practise, strategy and risk taking. Choosing what will sell, pulling strings to buy them cheaply before they boom in price.

You could work hard with honesty, earning more experience as you build upwards from almost nothing...

Or you could have an underhand approach to business, using extortion and undercutting your competitors to make more money.

It is a skill you could balance out well, either earn more with a fixed market, or scrape what you can in a growing business.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:43 am

I think whether or not the community would receive it better as an expansion is hit and miss. It'll either be welcomed like Poison Ivy, or hated like Pest Control. I agree, the fact it offers a combat means of training is good... but it's whether existing high-levels will welcome it as a long awaited relief, or hate it because it meant they toiled for nothing.

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:49 am

MorbiusMonster wrote:Player to player trading - easy anyone can accomplish that kind of feat

Player owned market trading - takes a little more practise, strategy and risk taking. Choosing what will sell, pulling strings to buy them cheaply before they boom in price.

You could work hard with honesty, earning more experience as you build upwards from almost nothing...

Or you could have an underhand approach to business, using extortion and undercutting your competitors to make more money.

It is a skill you could balance out well, either earn more with a fixed market, or scrape what you can in a growing business.

It's all well and nice describing Entrepreneurship for Dummies, but my challenge was to explain how it would work in a game. Players aren't going to participate in this if they can just go to the Grand Exchange and buy it for the cheapest rate, and any skill which requires talking to an NPC is going to old quickly.

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by MorbiusMonster on Thu Apr 14, 2011 7:24 am

It's a representation of how the market really works. You might not be a massive earner of money, but you can hold down a better reputation and graudally sell more stock by the hard work, whereas extortion will make profit, but the market is fairly stiff because people fear you or refuse to do business transactions.

Not to mention a hidden add on where, once you have the skill cape, you can be in charge of a loan firm, either offering loans and being lenient or offering money and breaking people's legs if they miss a repayment.

Ali Morrisane, one of the most prolific salesmen is in charge of this skill. Seems fitting if you ask me.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Thu Apr 14, 2011 10:21 pm

It's a representation of how the market really works. You might not be a massive earner of money, but you can hold down a better reputation and graudally sell more stock by the hard work, whereas extortion will make profit, but the market is fairly stiff because people fear you or refuse to do business transactions.

The skill won't work. It cannot be trained without direct influence from other players... and other players can't be bothered. There's no such thing as reputation... there's just everyone and the scammers, but you don't learn scammers by name and thus no long standing reputation is made. Also, at least from a games perspective, scamming is against the rules (sorry, extortion).

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Zectiox on Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:49 am

What makes a skill:

- Usefull tool for the player to do something with in-game
- intresting and fun to do (mostly)
- not thinking on the result before you got meat on the bones...
- ehmm.. not too similar to other skills


like why not introduce mechanic? (even if this isnt a medieval skill, but think on engineering, that suits better...) We all seen dwarfs and Gnomes with plenty of technologies... so why cant we like, do something too? It could be a good quest-skill "repair the... bla bla bla... req. Engineering at lvl 35...´" ;P

you could introduce a new area filled with dwarfs or gnomes and you need to help them engineer some stuff... ehmm underground Tongue... One-place skill maybe (as Dungeoneering) or as everyother skill.. a normal skill
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Handeath on Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:05 pm

Engineering is really Crafting, Smithing, and Construction rolled into one.

On a side-note, there have been whispers of spliting skills. What skills were to be split and into what?
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:21 pm

Whispers on here... or have Jagex been whispers? So Much Win

I actually think my dyslexia is getting worse. Sigh

I should invest in having a test... getting an extra week or two on coursework by default could come in handy. Smile

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Dark Avorian on Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:23 pm

Although you have a wet dream of having the skills split, it souldn't be fun for the actual players.
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Fri Apr 15, 2011 12:42 pm

Dark Avorian wrote:it souldn't be fun for the actual players.

It shouldn't be fun? You mean it wouldn't? Or are you actually saying it should be implemented in such a way that players cannot enjoy it? 'cause that just sounds lame. Tongue

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Zectiox on Sun Apr 17, 2011 8:00 am

the question is... are there any skills you want to include in the game? and are they usefull, simply, genius, advanced (you got something special for every level... or you know...)
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:15 am

Conjuring. Grin

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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by Zectiox on Tue Apr 19, 2011 8:18 am

so what would I have for benefits of learning and master Conjuring.. Tongue I googled it but it didnt give me much flesh on the bones Tongue
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Re: What makes a skill?

Post by 3mptylord on Tue Apr 19, 2011 9:03 am

Haha, it's a quest I wrote. It's like smithing, but instead of ore you use runes and instead of melee weapons you create magic weapons. Tongue

ŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻŻ
If all good things come to an end then we're living in a world where evil wins. 

If there once was love then maybe something survived. If we find a single diamond in the rough then it's worth it. Through a thousand tears if there's one drop of love then it's worth it. 
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