Improving the trapper


#1

Hey Stonehearth team! I don’t know if you have thought about this or not but I think you guys should at least consider the the trapper as it is now and how you want it to be upon release. From what I’ve gathered since the beginning of this project, it seems that you guys want to focus on the building and the adventure/combat aspects of the game as the key features of the game and I think that the trapper in it’s current state detracts the player from these aspects quite a bit. Having to manually walk the trapper to animals and trapping them is quite time consuming and when settlements get bigger and you have more people to worry about its just going to be annoying, especially in an end game situation like the big city render that you guys have posted on the website.

I think you guys should think about making the trapper (and other gatherer classes) more automatic. Rather than walking him to an animal and trapping it, it would be much better to simply click the animal or select a group of animals and select harvest or tame, at which point the trapper harvests and collects all their resources, or tames them. This is a lot less time consuming and it suits the tone of the game better. For instance, You harvest trees and stone by clicking the trees or stones you want to harvest, and then workers go and sort it out for you, rather than you having to manually walk each worker to a tree or stone to harvest it - why not have all the gathering systems work the same way rather than having a different system for each profession?

That is all. Also please don’t take the tone of this as annoyed or arrogant, it is not supposed to be, it is simply a suggestion. You guys are doing great work and I’m really looking forward to the release of this game.


#2

What Age of Empires did was to have you click on your villager, and then your animal, and then, after the meat is taken, the villager would look for more animals。 If there were more animals in sight, then the villager would proceed to hunt more animals until all the animals in sight were killed。 I think this is a good format for Stonehearth to follow。


#3

Just as a side notice… as far as I have understood the trapper was a test for Radiant. They wanted to implement a unit which you can directly influence and command to keep you a bit more busy in the early game. There was an alternative planned, so you could chose if you want to have direct control over a unit or if you want to go another way.

From one of the last streams I’ve understood that the devs did not like how all of this came out and that the profession will be changing in the future.


#4

The only concern I have for the Age of Empires system was that it was based off limited animals on the map, and “hunting” essentially exhausted the land; new ones never came during the game. Empire Earth actually added to this system by occasionally repopulating a herd of animals if one of them was hunted/killed–unless they were aggressively sought out and hunted, the animals could return (and grow over time for more food). Something like this was huge for more diverse food gathering in the game, but the villagers would still often kill all the animals if you weren’t keeping an eye on them occasionally.

If the Trapper is planned to be more automatic, I feel that the player will need a bit of parameter controls to avoid these issues. Having the ability to draw a hunting “zone” like the farming and building manager we’ve seen so far would let them wander freely (and fairly safely) on their own, and restrictions could be put down, such as “do not hunt rabbits if the total number falls below X” or “Hunt this creature every 2-3 days”.

My one concern is that the Trapper will become less valuable with the automatic system–I like having an early scouting unit in the game, and some sort of controllable unit(s) will still be necessary at some level for exploration outside of the settlement.


#5

I can’t find the thread right now, but you’ll be pleased to hear the trapper will be changed, the team have acknowledged right now that it’s just not fun to be clicking constantly :slight_smile:


#6

A simpler option might be to simply allow critters to respawn under certain conditions. Eg “under tree” + “covered by fog of war” + “no critters within a circle with radius X for the last in-game hour” + “is night-time” = “spawn critter at next in-game hour”.

Yeah, the lack of scouting is an issue, but if that’s not really an issue until, say, you’ve got enough people to have a military (remember, you can scout by giving workers far-off jobs), or similar, it might be ok.

Worst case, Radiant can easily implement a Scout profession (military one perhaps) that does allow for direct unit control. Light armour, not great in combat, but maybe a bonus to vision & speed. Equipment might be leather armour and a knife, bow & arrow, or something like that (both, for versatility?). Could even have it level up into a new class, not that I think that’d be necessary.


#7

What about something more DF ish. So the trapping/hunting would be automatically done by the class using an on/off button for him, but as overseer he needs supplies. Hunters need ammo and trappers need traps. Maybe a workshop for them where they take each catch and then process it, this would slow down there activity a little, as its kinda spammy atm.

I think the biggest delay on this is the inventory system, where we assign items to specific guys. Could automate this as well where they will just grab any trap/ammo thats in the stockpile.


#8

yeah, all I could dig up were the comments from @Tom regarding the initial design choices behind the class:


#9

Also from the most recent livestream:


#10

This is a pretty big annoyance for me.

Having to non-directly control the other Settlers yet having to directly control the Trapper is weird and doesn’t feel right.

It should be more like “Click on the Trapper and then an Animal. He brings the Animal home where you then get a choice to whether slay or keep it.”


#11

Why not just have the trapper build traps to lure animals to them?


#12

Lets say the trapper have 3 traps. You place them out and he will take care of an animal that gets trapped.


#13

Actually, I’d rather just have “Select the animal(s) and choose whether to slay or keep it. An available trapper will then go over and perform the appropriate action”, personally.

I like Dwalus’s idea as well, though.


#14

Or instead of individually clicking a bunch of Animals, you just drag and drop over the area which has an Animal(s) in it, and then it asks you whether you want to slay or keep it, and etc.

It’s better than micromanaging every single Critter.


#15

Right, that’s exactly what I had in mind when I typed the “(s)” in “animal(s)”. But it’s good of you to make that explicit for me. Anyway, if they will implement a system like that, this seems like an obvious feature, thankfully.