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In Lust we Trust

Discussion in 'Updates' started by Benji, Apr 11, 2016.

  1. Benji

    Benji Director Staff Artist Writer

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    Hi folks,

    So, while Crimson has been hammering out the parser (it's coming along beautifully, I'll add), I've been devoting my time to addressing some problems I have with the entire Lust system. This'll be a bit of a long post, as I want to share with you my analysis and, more importantly, my reasoning for removing it completely.

    First though, I want to say the vibe on the forums has been really nice so far, I couldn't be happier with it. I want a welcoming, classy community surrounding my game, and so far we have exactly that. Love you guys <3

    It's a YUGE wall of text, but I'll stick a tl;dr at the end for those short on time.


    Thou Must Lust
    Lust, as it was initially designed, was a lot like CoC and TiTS and other similar sexy RPG's; more out of a matter of course than anything else. We were making a sex game, we needed a lust meter, let's put one in. Thus, Carnal Souls had a lust meter.

    Up until recently it's kind of been a fixed point, something I've been working around. But, as we've been expanding and developing our battle system, it became apparent to me that the Lust system as it stood wasn't going to work with everything else around it. In fact, I've decided to remove it completely.

    I could write a very boring analysis (there's about seven pages in my design book) but I'm sure you guys would rather hear about what I plan to replace it with. We still need a win/loss condition for seduction in battles, and a way for arousal to be part of the game outside of battles and sex scenes too, as well as some other things. So let's start there.

    Lust Goals
    Here are the basic objectives that needed to be fulfilled, some by removing the lust meter, and some other problems that have bothered me that needed solutions:
    • A more effective way of tracking the player's arousal and ability to perform sexually, as well as any effects for abstaining for too long
    • A win/loss condition for seduction in battle
    • A way to prevent sex happening after the player and enemy had beaten/slashed/stabbed the crap out of eachother
    • A way to prevent non-consensual sex accidentally happening either to the player OR the enemy
    • Removing the sugarcoating from battle so that fighting to the death feels like fighting to the death, and separating this from the possibility of sex afterwards
    • New depth to battle strategies, both for fighting and for seducing as equally viable options
    Bit of a tall order. First, tracking the player's general arousal, seeing as that was the simplest:

    Go Forth and Multiply
    The game can't reliably or reasonably say how aroused you or your character are, so it won't. The game will never tell you you are not aroused enough to have sex; instead, it will tell you if you are too tired or too spent, and both of these can be improved directly. It's possible to be aroused but too exhausted to perform. Fatigue will be affected by your activities; sex, fighting, casting spells, travelling long distances, foregoing sleep, etc. Your ability to bang is based simply on your remaining fatigue and whether enough time has passed since you last had an orgasm. Both of these can be improved by the player, to the point where you might be able to shag someone several times in one session, you sex machine, you.

    (We could go into the specifics being that females don't need to 'recharge' as much as males do, but that's too nebulous to base game numbers on, as well as becoming even less objective when characters have both genetalia or none).

    I know some of you like the idea of being uncontrollably aroused, so things like being in heat, being under some bimbo-ism or other sexually deviant influence will increase your libido. Go too long without release (or a cold shower) and you'll start to feel effects. This is related to a new primary stat called Focus as part of an overhaul to stats that I'm working on, so more on that in another update. For now, know that Focus will decrease the debuff severity you get from going too long without release. It's possible you might get to a point where you don't need any recovery time after sex, as well as never needing to have sex at all, too.

    Steel Your Resolve
    The rest of the objectives are covered in large by the new Resolve system I've designed. At the moment, when outside of battle, it's inactive.

    [​IMG]

    However, when you enter battle, it becomes active.

    [​IMG]
    At the battle start, it's grey, meaning your Resolve is currently neutral. Status effects and other stuff may change this, however, but for now let's keep it simple. Let's say you slash at the enemy with your sword. Your Resolve begins to turn gold:

    [​IMG]
    This means your Resolve is moving towards fighting the enemy. Keep wailing on the enemy and causing damage, and eventually it will max out; glowing and flashing to let you know.

    [​IMG]
    When this happens, it will lock there for one turn, letting you unleash an attack with bonus damage, your Resolve fully focused to destroy the enemy. Now, let's say at the battle start, you decide to flirt with the enemy instead. It'll start to turn pink...

    [​IMG]
    ...and just like attacking the enemy, continue your efforts to seduce the enemy and eventually it will max out:

    [​IMG]
    Again, locking for one turn to pull off some super sensual seduction.

    Now, some of you may have guessed where this is going. The more your Resolve aligns with Fight or Flirt, the less effective the opposing strategy will be. If you beat on an enemy for a while, aligning your Resolve to Fight, trying to seduce them will have very little effect, and vice-versa.

    This helps to eliminate one of my bigger gripes with games like these: beating the snot out of an enemy and then being able to sex them as if nothing happened. Rather than simply have the game say 'You cannot do that', this system (in conjunction with others) prevents it from happening in a more natural way.

    Blocking with your shield or using other defensive abilities will nudge your Resolve alignment towards neutral again, so if you're having a hard time, you can change tactics. Furthermore, hitting the enemy with large attacks or especially effective seductions might change their alignment slightly, so enemies might change their mind and want to flirt back, or suddenly feel more compelled to retaliate physically.

    But wait, there's more. We still need a way to win or lose to seduction. The resolve meter functions just like the other bars there too:

    [​IMG]
    Seducing or being seduced will lower the target's resolve. Once it hits 0, just like the Health bar, the target loses. And, being just as important a win/loss condition as Health, Resolve will have its own primary stat and lots of ways to increase it. Whether you Fight or Flirt your way through the game, you'll need to watch your Health as well as your Resolve.

    Everything's Connected
    Lots of things will impact your resolve, and there'll be lots of ways to target the enemy's resolve too, not just flirting. Your aforementioned sexual frustration will change how your Resolve begins in battle. An especially painful barbed whip might cause so much pain it does damage as well as causing your character's Resolve to falter. A crushing blow from a warhammer will hurt as well as break the target's Resolve, too.

    Being as important as Health, recovering your Resolve needs just as much utility. Taunt the enemy to recover some Resolve and maybe align it a bit towards Flirt, or let out a bellowing warcry to steel your resolve and cement your Resolve to Fight. Potions, spells, and abilities will be at your disposal to keep your will strong.

    My personal favourite idea is the Blood Oath. With a special ceremonial knife on your belt, cut your HP and make a blood oath to destroy the enemy, fully restoring your Resolve and maxing it to Fight for bonus damage the next turn. I've got lots more but this post is too long as it is.

    The Aftermath
    Finally, the Resolve system lets us end battles in a more convincing way, depending on the battle. Using some damage totals and looking at the Resolve of both player and enemy at the end of a battle (and during), we can provide differing options and flavour.

    As well as more carefully handling non-consensual sex scenes, we're going to put an opt-in/out page during character creation. This will let you disallow all non-consensual scenes, allow all of them, or ask the game to provide graphical warnings for actions that will result in non-consensual sex, so you can decide on a case-by-case basis. Even with that option however, we aim to make sure that the player never ends up in a non-consensual scene accidentally, either giving or receiving. The Resolve system is a big step towards that.

    As a small example, say the player loses. We can see if the player was aligned to Fight, while the enemy was aligned to Flirt, we can assume from this that the player's act of attacking the enemy instead flirting back is an indication the player didn't want to bang that enemy on that occasion.

    I'll provide more details on this at a later date, as this post is huge and there's still some things I want to work on. A lot of this is still subject to change, but I think this is definitely a mechanic in the right direction for Carnal Souls.

    As always, let us know what you think! Your feedback is more than welcome. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to call in sick for a few days.

    tl;dr
    Resolve has replaced Lust and it's super cool; non-consensual scenes will be a lot harder (hopefully impossible) to accidentally fall into; battles will be much more interesting; Benji's lying about being sick and gonna go play dark souls 3 now

    Edit: Part 2, The Clarifyingening
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2016
  2. DevilBone

    DevilBone Active Member Member

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    Well damn, this is looking more and more like a real RPG game. Anyone else feeling excited (I don't mean in your pants, keep em zipped folks)?
     
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  3. GreenSleeves

    GreenSleeves Active Member Member

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    Wow. This new system seems remarkably clever. More realistic than the standard Lust mechanic, gives more control over the content the player exposes themself to, and doesn't seem overly or unnecessarily complicated.

    I am thoroughly hype.

    Enjoy your illness, Benji!
     
  4. Godwin

    Godwin Active Member Member

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    Bold move, Cotton. I approve.

    Overall, I think you've put a lot of thought into this, and I agree that this method does sound like it'll add more depth and allow you guys to tailor content better. I'm especially glad that fight resolve blocks out sex content afterwards. It's hard to imagine characters ready for sex after getting the shit beat out of them, or they're dead. An awesome direction in my book.

    A Question about the one turn lock power attacks. After the especially powerful move, does it go back to the standard gold / pink color? It'd be weird if it sets right back to neutral afterwards. Looking for some clarification there. I'm also assuming our (hidden) attractions panel will tie into our resolve, defining just what kind of seduction attacks our character finds arousing and adjusting resolve damage to match that, yes? Finally, opt-in opt-out options are cool. Thank you for the inclusion.

    Holy shit, I'm gonna be a blood mage. Can I summon infernal demons too? They wont be able to stem my tide of succubi, let me tell you.

    Yes. I am excite.
     
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  5. JfromfarPY

    JfromfarPY Member Member

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    The resolve idea, I think I might have heard of something similar in another games but the way you want to use it on Carnal Souls seems perfect, it opens a lot of ways of determinating the result of an encounter.
     
  6. Benji

    Benji Director Staff Artist Writer

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    The idea is that it'd max and lock there for one turn so you can use the buff without the enemy flirting you into losing the 100% Fight alignment constantly. After you use it, there'd be a cooldown of some kind before it's ready again, but your alignment would stay put (but then be vulnerable to being changed by enemy attacks). Sorry I didn't make that clear, I had to get Stereo to bump up the character limit as it was, haha.

    Also worth noting, you only get that damage boost when it locks. It's not a steady build up of bonus damage, but rather a steady decrease in the opposing alignment's effectiveness.

    Aye, that's the plan. And again, Resolve is a good way to see what the player is fond of seducing and fond of slaying.
     
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  7. Godwin

    Godwin Active Member Member

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    Enemy flirt / combat actions can effect your resolve as well?

    In that case, say you're all for fighting this baddie, but she really wants to fuck you. She can change your resolve to flirt, even though, as a character, you still really want to fight her? I can see how that mechanic would be a good way of mitigating the damage you're doing to her, but that sounds like it'd also give the system a false read out if you eventually lose the fight and she's succeeded in seducing you to flirt, even though you're gung ho about fighting. As in, your body's probably pretty aroused, but you don't really want anything to do with her.

    But of course, while you're fighting her you'll be lowering her flirt too, so you both will probably be hovering around neutral for the most part unless one or the other changes tactics - or one of you is comically over powered.

    I dunno, some things that I can see getting a bit muddled.
     
  8. Maija

    Maija Member Member

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    What exactly does "accidentally" mean here? Are there not going to be scenes where the monster forces themselves on your character after you lose to them in combat for example? And how would non-consensual sex accidentally happen to an enemy in the first place?
     
  9. Benji

    Benji Director Staff Artist Writer

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    You're not wrong! That's something I considered too.

    The game itself will likely look at the total alignment values as well as the 'final' alignments. As in, the player may have accumulated X amount of Fight alignment, while the enemy will have inflicted Y amount of Flirt alignment. So, even though the player may have been influenced into being Flirty, the game will know that their contribution to their own resolve was 100% fight. Health damage during the fight would likely also be considered. Same goes for enemies too, so their actions after the fight will match their actions during the fight.
     
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  10. Shadefalcon

    Shadefalcon Active Member Member

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    This resolve thing is an interesting game mechanic.
    This I like very much. One thing I´m not a huge fan of when fighting in CoC or T.i.T.S. is that my character can be turned on by pretty much everything. Even though I have no interest in men.
    I keep loving this game more and more. The mechanics seems so complex, yet so simple to understand. :D

    One thing I´m a bit uncertain about is the consent part. How is it decided wether or not, after you win, you´ll have consensual sex or flat out rape the enemy? If that is an option.
    Is it so that if you manage to tease your way to victory without the opponent changing their alignment it becomes non consensual sex? Meanwhile if they change it, it becomes consensual?
     
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  11. Benji

    Benji Director Staff Artist Writer

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    Don't panic, haha. Scenes like that can still totally happen, but the player isn't forced into accepting that fate if they're not into it. Like I said, there'll be more on actual win/loss results and mechanics soon after I flesh it out some more.

    A simple example is that both the player and the enemy are flirting with one another. In that situation, wouldn't they just have sex? Nothing's making that a 'battle' except the game. In other games, in that situation, you'd be flirting with an enemy who's flirting back, win, and end up forced into raping them despite their very clear interest in sexing you. You'll still have that non-con option if you win, but it won't be the only possible result.
     
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  12. ok, I like the overall idea of resolve. but what about if you've been fighting 100%, but the enemy still beats you, either by lust or combat. I'd still like to see my character be raped for losing sometimes, so how're you going to work that in?
     
  13. Benji

    Benji Director Staff Artist Writer

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    Consensual sex would be an option if the game sees that both player and enemy were primarily flirting with one another. No/low HP damage done, high amounts of Flirt alignment, Resolve damage done on both sides, etc. Consensual sex would then be an option regardless of who wins, but so would non-consensual sex too. But, as always, you only get the XP/gold if you win.

    Basically the philosophy isn't 'how does the game decide who fucks who', but 'how the game decides which valid options it presents to the player, given the context of the fight'.

    I'll try to get the next part of this design plan up for you guys soon, so far the win/loss and what happens after seems to be the point of confusion. Sorry about that.
     
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  14. Maija

    Maija Member Member

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    I just fear this might take all the tension away from the battle since what else could be sufficient punishment for losing? I'll reserve my judgement until we hear more about the win/loss mechanics from you guys, I suppose.


    Alright, but what if the kind of sex my character and the enemy want are different? If, say two futas are fighting via lust tactics but both are expecting to top?

    Edit: Your post before kind of clarified on my second question, but I'm not entirely sure how this situation would resolve itself still. Even if we both use lust as our primary combat tactic there would still be a "winner" in the fight and basically there would then be consensual options for post-battle sex. Is that about the gist of it?
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2016
  15. Shadefalcon

    Shadefalcon Active Member Member

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    No problem. And thanks, that clarified exactly what I was wondering about.
     
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  16. Ri Mactire

    Ri Mactire New Member Member

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    really like the the resolve system. Can you add some type of sadist training school in the game that teaches you how to fight with certain weapons to defeat your opponent without making them too injured to have sex with or rape and alternately a monk school that teaches you something similar but with a different set of weapons for people who don't want to be sadists
     
  17. Benji

    Benji Director Staff Artist Writer

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    Regardless of whatever sex happens afterward, I aim to treat losses the same throughout, sexual or lethal. Whatever you lose by dying, you'd also lose by having your Resolve broken.

    Like I said, non-consensual sex can still be an option in that situation, in which case, whoever won the fight would be on top.
     
  18. Maija

    Maija Member Member

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    Thank you for the answers and the update. It's always interesting to hear what's in the plans for the game. Keep up the good work.
     
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  19. Milkman

    Milkman Member Member

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    This system sounds amazing overall. My boner of anticipation for this game has managed to grow even harder...
     
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  20. Farlun

    Farlun Well-Known Member Member

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    Read the post. That's a really awesome system, very well thought out.

    One thing that bugs me is the gray area: What if you and the enemy will change resolve multiple times during the fight and it will be 50/50 between a flirting session and a brawl? And will rape scenes be *pernamently* turned off for classic fights?

    And yes, good luck and git gut, it took me 5 attempts to defeat Iudex, hell yeah. And I accidentaly leveled Dex up. Don't tell anyone I did that. I'm such a scrub.
     

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