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Xellious Noon
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PostSubject: Dark Souls-themed RP?   Mon Mar 28, 2016 8:38 pm

I'm posting a topic here in OOC Organization so even folks who weren't around for the chat can catch up and have a say in how this goes.

It's a cool idea but it could be done many different ways. Therefore, I'll start up from a series of questions for everyone.


1) How much do you know about Dark Souls? Have you played it, seen someone play it, seen short videos or trailers of it, only heard of it, or know nothing at all?

For whoever needs it, here's a small overview of the Dark Souls world, relatively spoiler-free... at least, this much is announced in the opening cinematic in Dark Souls (1) and the first couple minutes of the game.

Spoiler:
 


2) How difficult do you want this RP to be? Dark Souls is famous for its difficulty level, where even the small enemies can kill you in a flash if you get careless and lower your guard, or get surrounded, not to mention the stronger enemies and bosses that (nearly) OHKO you if you're not ready for them.

Personally, I would like to start with characters who are initially weak, like the player character in the game, and must be careful to survive, but let them slowly grow up to be powerful warriors, even taking down the gods themselves. For members familiar with D&D, it's not unlike starting at level 1 and working up from there.

Also, note that in the Dark Souls universe, death is not the end. When playing an Undead, your character can always return to the place where they died and keep going, armed with more knowledge to tackle whatever challenge they found. They can keep trying, again and again, until they get it right, unlike in worlds where one death means game over.


3) Do you want to use existing characters, adapt characters for the DS universe, or create brand new ones just for this RP?

I'm leaning towards brand new or adapted characters, myself, but I'm fine with whatever you guys choose here. We can even run a mixed team with some new characters and some old favourites. The only catch is that the power level (set by the previous question) will mean some of our existing characters either can't be used, or would show up in a severely underpowered state (which could be explained by Hollowing, as they would also be Undead, with the power to rise after dying, which somewhat makes up for whatever other powers they've lost).


4) In the world of Dark Souls, characters don't really have any surnames. Instead, they use nicknames, titles, or most commonly, their 'homeland' as a reference. This means you will encounter NPCs named, for example, Andre of Astora, Petrus of Thorolund, Oswald of Carim, Laurentius of the Great Swamp, and so on and so forth.

Are you guys okay with running the 'X of Y' naming scheme? I'd really love to use it since it ties characters closer into the rest of the world. I could even work in specific interactions that can happen when your character meets someone from the same land.

If the majority is in agreement I'll post a full list of the possible 'homelands' and some details we know about them. Also, if you guys want to make your own, I'm down for that too, and if you'd like your character to come from a region someone else created, that's also cool.


5) How do you feel about multiplayer/cooperation?

Part of Dark Souls' difficulty lies in the fact that you're trying to take on the world solo, fighting swarms of enemies and giant bosses alike. You can sometimes 'summon' friendly players for help, but you can also be invaded by other players. The game handwaves this as 'time and space are distorted' in the Dark Souls world, so even if various Undead went on their journeys in totally different centuries, their timelines can draw close enough for them to meet, or they can request cooperation through the mechanic of 'summoning'.

But in this RP, there will obviously be multiple players taking part. I thought of basically two options here: either the characters meet and form a traveling group that help each other, or everyone travels basically solo and can't interact with others, except for specific circumstances (like banding to take down a boss together). I'd come up with a flavor explanation for either case, but I wanted to ask how you guys feel about this before I proceed.


6) How much should stats and numbers matter? Dark Souls is an action RPG, so it uses stats and leveling as part of the core experience. I don't want to turn the RP into a number-crunching or even dice-rolling one though, not without a solid system of rules to fall back on (like what D&D offers). At the same time, I don't want stats to be completely obsolete, either, to the point where all characters have basically the same abilities and no strengths and weaknesses to distinguish them.

My current thinking is that, out of the 8 available stats in Dark Souls (Vitality, Attunement, Endurance, Strength, Dexterity, Resistance, Intelligence and Faith) you can choose to keep them balanced and equal, or decide to have strengths and weaknesses in your statline. Instead of numerical values, these will have '+' and '-' marks (pluses and minuses, obviously) to show whether they're stronger or weaker than the stats of an average Undead.

At character creation, you start from the average baseline and then put from 0 to 3 pluses to enhance stats you want to be your character's strengths. Then you put an equal number of minuses to compenstate, adding weaknesses to your character.

Over the course of the RP, as characters grow more powerful, I will alert you that you get another plus you can use to increase your stats. How you use them is up to you: you can stack '+' marks in one stat to be the very best, you can put them in more stats to get a hybrid build, or you can remove '-' to cover for your weaknesses and eventually overcome them.

When creating your character, you can raise a single stat up to '+++' but you can't lower a stat below '--'; this means that you need a '--' in one stat and a '-' in another, or three stats with one '-' each, to make up for having three '+' to spend on other stats. After character creation, the maximum you can raise one stat is '++++++++++++' (that's 12 pluses at max).

....... please tell me if this is too simple or too complex, one way or another. I'm not a good judge of complexity with this stuff, but I don't want to let all characters 'cast all spells and wield all weapons while being fast AND tanky' without distinction. I feel that this is one of the simpler ways to do this... but I don't know. If it's too complex, and you can think of a simpler way, please tell me. Or if everyone is okay with tracking numbers on the stats to be precise, tell me that too, and I'll do it.

For reference, here's a link to the Dark Souls' Wiki stats page to give you an idea what they all do. http://darksouls.wikia.com/wiki/Stats


7) Weapons, Armors, Rings, and other items... how easy should they be to obtain? And how relevant should they be?

Again, I don't want to mirror all of the game's mechanics for the sake of the RP, but I do want the weapons and armors folks are using to at least 'feel' different, in some small way. Even playing through Dark Souls' actual game, you can go full 'Fashion Souls' and just choose the weapons and armor that you like and find cool-looking, and win, sure some parts will be harder but very few are suddenly unbeatable.

On one end of the scale, our characters could start with scrap and broken swords and have to scavenge for equipment, and take a long time to obtain decent and then their best equipment. Or, they could start with weapons and armor that suits them, to fulfill their concepts right away and to stand out in their fighting styles. Or they could have super easy access to a variety of equipment and swap out for what's best for the current situation, on the other extreme of the scale. >.>

I was thinking that all characters might start near-naked and scavenging, but quickly find the weapon that suits them and some armor to dress up in, then build up from there, obtaining unique weapons as the RP progresses, along with gaining more experience over time. Also, the armors would mostly have one or two qualities to them to describe them, rather than going into their exact numbers (aking to 'better poison defense' or 'better magic defense' but 'heavy' for the weakness, for example). And you'd either wear full sets, or mix-and-match set pieces for a desired effect (so your 'flame-weak' gauntlets and 'flame-resistant' pants would cancel out in the end).

There's also Rings....... I don't know about rings. I really want to add them, but they only make sense in small numbers. Maybe so small that every ring is unique, and then either it's 'finders-keepers' or the group can decide who keeps which ring, maybe based on who would use them best. But rings in Dark Souls are super cool so I'd love to work them in.

Also, unique and new armor? Weapons? And rings? If you'd like something new and unique, we can negotiate to add it in, just for your character. Just don't expect anything broken, but I won't let such unique equipment be useless, either. It should be well within 'decent and universally useful' to 'niche but great for what it does' lines.


8) In Dark Souls, your character can join Covenants for certain benefits. Covenants are like guilds, except you establish them with a being that possesses great magical power (usually deities, but not only), by praying to the Covenant leader, or an agent of that leader.

They're part of the game experience so I'd love to add them, although, some Covenants from Dark Souls (1) won't be available (because, well, somebody already died). To make up for it, I'll add a few new deities to make new Covenants, too.

For info on the Covenants in Dark Souls (1), look here.
http://darksouls.wikia.com/wiki/Covenant

I'm mentioning this because, if you'd like to Make Your Own Covenant, ruled by your own deity (or equivalent figure), I'm game. If you design a deity and such, then you can create an entire area to add to Lordran, where the group can travel to explore the deity's domain and enter that Covenant, or not. Your deity can be a power-player and influence how the events unfold, can recruit and send the characters party on missions to further their agenda, or be an enemy they shall eventually bring down. Or all of these things at once.

If you're interested in going down this line, tell me. I'm still thinking which deities 'survived' for the timeline I'm envisioning for this RP (it'll most likely take place after the events of Dark Souls (1) so I can reference stuff from that game, probably after the Kindling Ending) but knowing who'd like to add a deity (and how many I have) will help me map this out.


.......... I think that's more or less all the questions. For now. >> This post is already super long but I hope not too long for you guys. Take your time reading and thinking about it... it's not gonna start in a great hurry, but every post in reply (or even if you guys catch me to talk on Skype) will help get this going.
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PostSubject: Re: Dark Souls-themed RP?   Mon Mar 28, 2016 11:34 pm

1.) Played a bit of it, couldn't really invest into it as much as I'd want to because my game list is 60+ long.

2.) I want it everyone being low level as well, all weak beings who are crawling together attempting to get shit to get better. I like it that a simple zombie could chew off the weakest guy if he decides he can just strong arm it.

3.) I would like new characters, although I'm not opposed to using our own in an alternate universe. Doesn't matter much for me, although I'd probably end up making a new character... or using a character who would do well in this. Hmm. I'll think on it. Either way everyone should be free to do what they will, as long as they don't bring their powers with them.

4.) I like the Homelands idea. Do it up. Maybe even make something for EA UA/UB stuff. Who knows.

5.) I think we'd do better having everyone together, with moments where they'd have to split up but be able to summon a friend to help if it gets too hectic. Having everyone alone constantly is just pretty much a solo campaign, which we have the chance -not- to have. Hahaha

6.) I like the idea of the pluses, and even going as far to state that we get "skills" that we can use once and awhile. Kind of like your brother's Master Gear; that system was pretty good. But definitely the pluses because it actually allows one person to be tanky af, and another to be agile enough to climb a wall or something. Not as complex as D&D but not freeformed.

7.) I like the idea of having broken swords and tattered armor to start. You'd determine whether or not we'd find anything of value, or when we band together and kill something big, it would drop something good for one or two people. But I like that idea. A lot of work for you, but a good idea.

I don't know what the rings are like, but if you can work them in, that would be neato.

8.) I like the idea of the Covenants, and I think adding new ones/custom ones is a good idea as well. Thumbs up from me.
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PostSubject: Re: Dark Souls-themed RP?   Sat Apr 09, 2016 8:37 pm

Thanks for the input Kevin. ^_^ At least that gives me a viewpoint to weigh decisions against.

It's been a while with no new posts though. So in this post I'll just give you guys the Character Outline I've worked on. Then, the post immediately afterwards will explain stuff and give you guys Options.


Empty Outline:
 


Empty Outline:
 
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Xellious Noon
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PostSubject: Re: Dark Souls-themed RP?   Sat Apr 09, 2016 8:38 pm

And in this post, details and options for the various fields of the character outline. >.>

Name: Just remember to use "X of Y" instead of a surname
Sex: No difference in stats or gameplay, only visual. That said, females seem to have all the coolest armors in Dark Souls, but I may be biased here.

Appearance: Keeping it basic...
-Hair Color:
-Hair Style:
-Eye Color:
-Skin Color:
-Body Build: Dark Souls provides the following 'Physique' options - Average, Slim, Very Slim, Large, Very Large, Large Upper Body, Large Lower Body, Top-Heavy (read: Big Head) and Tiny Head. Just thought I'd let you know.

Possible Homelands: The descriptions are taken straight from Dark Souls lore. Just pick one that sounds cool to you or inspires you. Remember that you can create your own, too.
Spoiler:
 

Possible Classes/Occupations: Think of these as flavor for your character, and a part of background history. You could tailor your stats to reflect those the class starts with, but you don't have to, I'm not tight on this one. On the other hand, they will slightly influence what items you find when looting stuff, so that your first set of equipment lets you perform as a member of your class before you customize further than that. Remember, if you have a unique idea for the class/occupation, we can talk about adding that, too.
Spoiler:
 

Possible Trinkets/Starting Items: Pick just one from the list, although it's slightly broken down into groups of similar items. Unlike the above options, you can't make a custom starting gift, so these are all you have to choose from.

Spoiler:
 

Possible Covenants/Patron Deities: Aside from the Way of White, you cannot actually belong in these covenants from the start of the game/RP. But you can be... let's call it, a sympathizer, or someone conducting private research into them. This gives me a hint as to what covenants you folks are ultimately aiming for.

Note that the Gravelord Servant covenant is definitively unavailable (because Gravelord Nito was slain and his Lord Soul was taken by the Chosen Undead.) The others may become unavailable due to in-game events, or turn out to have been unavailable due to past events (but it's not stated until IC evidence turns up, to avoid spoiling stuff.)

Finally, you can make your own deity and covenant, too. Talk to me about this first and I can add them to the list so other people can join your deity's covenant, as well.
Spoiler:
 

Possible Talents: Think of them as D&D feats. They are split up into 5 groups, and over the course of the RP, you can only take 2 talents from each group, for a maximum of 10. Which ones you prioritize I leave up to you. Unique talents you'd like to give your character are also possible, as long as their power and utility is roughly equal with these ones.

Spoiler:
 
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PostSubject: Re: Dark Souls-themed RP?   Mon Apr 11, 2016 11:53 am

I haven't played DS but it's been on my to-do list for years and I'm super interested in this. Low-level sounds good, character stat system gets a plus from me, and love the idea of adding some more flavour with homelands + potential deities. Smile

Unfortunately as per usual, will be in and out depending on real life commitments... how much flexibility would there for me to float in and out of the group? Would that be a thing we can do, or would it be too disruptive?
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PostSubject: Re: Dark Souls-themed RP?   Mon Apr 11, 2016 3:10 pm

I didn't expect you to reappear on EA just to post in this RP. I'm honored!

I'm afraid the RP could move a tad too fast for you to keep up at that rate. At least as the typical player character... but how about you'd join and leave as a recurring NPC? Or a character that's summoned for specific battles - in Dark Souls, you get to meet characters from different times you can't meet otherwise by summoning them, like Paladin Leeroy, Dark Iron Tarkus and Witch Beatrice, to name just a few. You could join select battles that way, if you want.

You could also be an NPC and merchant the group meets from time to time. Maybe even an agent of one of the deities, like Oswald of Carim was the agent of Velka. There's a few options for sure, and at any rate, I'd update you on what passes in the meantime between your appearances.

I wish we could meet on Skype and chat. If you'd like that, that's great, but if not, PM me anytime and we'll discuss details.
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