Saturday, January 20, 2007

On Set Items

One concept that has been used times and times again in recent fantasy games is that of the set items; that is, items that are better if worn with other items of the same set, so your helm of Bob would give more defence if worn with your gauntlets of Bob, and maybe give resistance to curses if you also have the sword of Bob. Set items, however, are usually drops, not craftable items, so in essence, it just gives craftable items another layer of uselessness.

How do you reconcile set items and freely craftable items, then? By inventing the concept of item resonance (Seriously, you should have guessed that one. Sheesh). Item resonance happens when items are crafted with similar goal in mind. So, for example, a plate helm is a lot more efficient if worn with a plate armor, plate gauntlets and plate greaves. Similarly, an item enchanted to resist curses will be more efficient if worn with an item to resist necromancy or another which reduces demon attacks. Wielding a dagger will not be very useful if you're wearing heavy, cumbersome armor, but it becomes quite deadly if you have boots of speed and gloves of agility.

So now, players can make their own sets, reinforcing their desired fighting style precisely the way they want it; no longer will they be forced to rely on developer-enforced sets that might be close to what they had in mind.

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