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a multiplayer game of parenting and civilization building

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#1 News » Update: More Fixes » 2020-12-19 19:20:09

Replies: 4


I'm working through the list of reported bugs.

When picking the fittest follower to inherit a leadership position, exiled followers are no longer considered.  Special biome/homeland boundaries no longer line up with ley lines for natural springs.  Multiple DING messages, occurring at the same time (or in quick succession) are now queued, giving you a chance to read each one in turn.  This means that if you inherit both leadership and ownership at the same time, you'll hear about both.  A victim's fleeing emote is correctly preserved when they step in and out of a bad biome.  The language specialist family is no longer accidentally fertile outside their homeland band, to the far north or far south.  A gap has been added between the desert and jungle bands, since having those bands abut each other creates an impassable barrier for folks who get sick in both.  And finally, the second phase of the tutorial has been re-designed somewhat to make it less confusing for new players.

Thanks to everyone who took the time to report these issues.  I can't fix them if I don't know about them.

Functionality issues can be reported here (like bugs or glitches in the client or server logic):

Content issues can be reported here (like if an object should be containable, but isn't):

#2 Main Forum » Something to test as twins » 2020-12-07 19:45:04

Replies: 2

The twins SHOULD go to where the SECOND twin is born.

This is true for trips and quads too.  Wherever the last person is born, that's where the rest should follow.

So, with the new legacy chain code, if the last to join the group lived to old age and has descendants alive, they should all get born to one of those descendants.

Can someone test this can confirm that it's working?

Remember, it's triggered by the LAST member of your group to hit LOGIN from the FRIENDS screen.


#3 News » Update: Legacy Chain » 2020-12-04 18:55:16

Replies: 42


The idea that has been implemented this week has been a long time coming.

This game is supposed to be about a bunch of different things:  the deep mystery of a trans-generational civilization (who built all this, and why?), being a small part of something much bigger than yourself, the philosophical concept of the veil of ignorance (where you can't control or predict what situation you are born into), and trying to get as close as possible to what death might actually feel like (saying goodbye forever to the people that you have grown to love).

The initial design of the game tied all of these concepts together nicely.  You are born to a randomly-chosen mother somewhere in the world, the next step in a long lineage of other players going back into time immemorial.  You pick up where your ancestors left off, making contributions and improvements in the little time you have.  You have babies in the form of other players who are themselves randomly assigned to you as their mother.  And at the end of your hour-long life, you say goodbye to all of this in a very real way, because if you get born again, it will be to a different mother in a completely different situation.

On paper, it seems like an elegant design in terms of the way it embodies the underlying philosophical concepts, with each part of the structure reinforcing the other parts.  And it does work, for the most part, in practice.  It gives you the right feelings at the right times.

However, beyond giving you complex feelings and embodying interesting philosophical concepts, games are also meant to be played.  And for One Hour One Life to function, it must be played over and over, at least by a substantial portion of its playerbase.

For example, if each player only played the game once, and had a deep and meaningful experience in that one life, we might see the game as fulfilling its purpose, and those players might even feel like they got their $20 worth of art and entertainment.  However, given that the game is a multiplayer venture, it would completely fall apart, in very short order, if every paying customer played only once.

And the unfortunate fact is that the game structure, as initially designed, is NOT particularly compelling to play over and over, due to a lack of continuity from hour to hour or any sense of long-term progress.

The question:  After an hour spent playing a good and satisfying life, why would you immediately want to play again?  You'll be thrown into a completely different situation, unable to continue progressing in whatever project you were working on in the last life.  For a large segment of the playerbase, the answer is that they do not immediately feel like playing another life after finishing one.

The game would benefit from some sense of continuity across lives, but to achieve that, something has to give, philosophically.  I need to prioritize the philosophical goals, and commit to the primary goals, while letting the secondary goals slide a bit in the name of playability.

Saying goodbye to those you love is a nice aspect of this game, but it's not the most important aspect.  Still, I've been holding onto it, trying to keep it, even though being able to reborn back in the same family solves the continuity problem and many other problems with the game.  I think that it's time to let this aspect go a bit.

After all, even if you do get reborn in the same family again, the composition of that family will be different.  They will have moved on in time.  Some of them will have died.  And you will never be 100% clear about who's who.  Your family will be a mix of reincarnated friends and total strangers.  You will still be saying goodbye to some degree, every time you die.

So, this week's update allows you to get reborn to your own descendants, as long as some of them still survive.  This will allow you to continue working on whatever projects your family is working on, life after life.

Of course, there's a catch:  you have to live until old age in your last life to get reborn in this way.  Die young, and your personal connection to your family line will be broken, and you'll be born into a different family.

And it's not limited to the cases where you get reborn immediately after dying.  If your descendants are still alive tomorrow, you can be born to them tomorrow.  Thus, if you want to play this way, you will be highly motivated to set your offspring up in a good situation to ensure their long-term survival.

You can see how this change also helps to address something that I've been struggling with for a very long time:  how to get you to care about the survival of your kids.  Genetic score was a kind of artificial and rigid way to make you care.  Letting you get reborn to your descendants is a much more natural and organic way.

And one more detail, for those who are interested:  for females, descendants are daughters, granddaughters, and so on.  For men, descendants are nieces, grand nieces, and so on, and in some cases, much-younger sisters.  So it's really not about getting born into the same family again, but instead specifically about recurring in your own direct line.

#4 Re: Main Forum » Game crashing » 2020-12-04 18:06:08


Please email me:  jasonrohrer AT fastmail DOT fm

#5 Re: Main Forum » Maps are dead content » 2020-12-04 18:05:32

Separate from finding other villages, what about finding established oil wells?

#6 Re: Main Forum » Idea - Seasonal Crops and Clothing » 2020-12-04 18:03:44

This is one of those things where I had to pick my battles, as a solo developer who actually wants to ship (and eventually finish) this game.

No oceans.

No seasons.

A lot of developers make the mistake of over-scoping their game, and they get bogged down implementing a long list of extraneous systems.

You might say, "Hey, there ARE a bunch of extraneous systems in this game," but they were all motivated by some particular design problem that we faced on the ground, as the game was being played by actual players.  And I have been (and will continue to) remove those systems when it becomes clear that they don't work or are no longer necessary.  For example, you can see what happened with tool slots.

Seasons is an example of something that would require a ton of extra work to do right....  snowy versions of a bunch of different art assets, for example.  Yeah, I could "phone it in," but I wouldn't want to do that.

#7 Re: Main Forum » Coming soon: get reborn to your descendants after living to old age » 2020-11-30 21:18:18

If you're cursed out of the area where your descendants are living, then you will be blocked from getting born there.

As far as the "just one more play" loop of living in different places in the next life, I suppose it appeals to some people and not others.

I personally find myself only playing a single hour, NOT finishing my life's project before I die, and then feeling kinda frustrated, and then NOT wanting to start a totally different life somewhere else and start a new project.  So for me, there's really no danger of playing OHOL all night by accident.

But if you want to play a different family next time, just die at 55 instead of 60.

And Dodge, as far as "just /die until you get back there," that only works if enough time has passed to clear up your lineage ban, right?

The next morning, obviously /die to round-robin into the same family would work.

One of my visions for the game was always that parents would REALLY feel like parents, and act like parents.  Keep the kids locked indoors until they're old enough to be safe on their own.  Load them down with clothing, food, and weapons before letting them go out on their own.  Give them careful instructions to maximize their survival.  And especially at the end of the parent's life, say goodbye with important advice.  "Keep the farm going, don't let any other family steal from our pie cellar, and take care of those great grandkids for me!"

If you're hoping that your descendants survive the night, until you can come back and rejoin them tomorrow morning, all of that stuff would make a lot more sense.  You'd REALLY want to set your descendants up for survival, if you were hoping that they were going to survive without out until you had a chance to return 8 hours later.

Fitness scores were a way of trying to "force" this to happen, but I always wanted a way for it to happen naturally.  Some players don't care about scores, and other players won't care about this, I guess....

#8 Main Forum » Coming soon: get reborn to your descendants after living to old age » 2020-11-30 02:18:56

Replies: 55


--If you live to old age, you will be born as the baby of one of your descendants, if possible, in your next life.

--If you die younger than old age, you will be born in some other family in your next life (just like it currently works).

--This will occur with no time limit, so if you die of old age and come back tomorrow, and if some of your descendants have survived, you will still be born to them.

--If being born to your descendants is possible, you will NOT be considered to fill an Eve slot.

--For women, descendants are daughters, granddaughters, etc.

--For men, descendants are nieces and their descendants.


--To give you some sense of continuity across multiple lives, so you can keep working on pet projects long-term.

--To making playing another life "right now" fundamentally different from playing another life tomorrow.

--To make you really care about the survival of your offspring, beyond the "gimmick" of fitness scores.

--To make your own kids really more important than your sister's kids, again beyond the fitness score ramifications.

--To make stealing to keep your family alive make sense.

--To make hoarding and trading make more sense, beyond the "gimmick" of forced trading due to biome specialization.

--To make dying young feel very different than dying of old age.

--To give private property more utility.


--"Saying goodbye" at the end of a life won't feel quite as real (though it still will be the end of one story and the start of the next).

--A little bit less variety between lives (though players can decide to get born somewhere else next life by dying a bit younger than 60, and there will be plenty of cases where you die young by accident, or have no offspring survive).

--The ability to continue projects, life-after-life, reduces the uniqueness of the game.... though there's plenty of chance to mess it up.  So there still will be a unique kind of drama that no other game has (when your last baby dies, and you just KNOW that you've lost your thread with this family forever).

#9 Main Forum » Another report from the road (again, again) » 2020-11-24 14:40:15

Replies: 14

We've finally settled on a town in New Hampshire:  Dover.

The community of liberty-loving people in the area is extremely vibrant.  Lots of other no-school kids for our kids to interact with.  Lots of community gatherings and activities.  I might need to brush up on cryptocurrency, but it definitely feels like "finding one's people."

And the SKIES.  My goodness, I had forgotten how beautiful tumultuous, partly-cloudy skies can be.  We have mostly solid blue skies in Davis, California.  But here, the sky looks different literally every day.  So many scenes where "heavenly" sun rays are piercing through and shining down in dazzling arrays, with such a wide dynamic range.  And the sunsets.  Even on a cloudy or rainy day, it seems to partly clear up by sunset, providing a textured multi-scape for the setting sun to color.  We were expecting it to be "gloomy" here, but so far, we've had at least some bright sunshine every single day.  It was pouring yesterday, until sunset, and this morning I have a bright sunrise shining through my window.

They also seem to enforce their laws against victim-producing crimes here (instead of catch-and-release), and they aren't taxing and regulating their economy into the ground (almost every business has a "we're hiring" sign in the window, and teenagers can actually find jobs here, unlike Davis, where literally no teenagers worked, because every business was barely afloat with a skeleton crew of employees).  And they're actually sheltering the homeless here, and then forcing the ones who don't want shelter to pack up an leave public spaces (I don't know what the best solution is, but long-term camping on the public sidewalks is probably not it).

Oh, and the fact that you can get twice the house for half the price is a major bonus.  The median house price in Davis has risen to $725,000, in the midst of urban flight from the nearby San Francisco.

Of course, there's urban flight on the East Coast too, and guess what?  The word about those New Hampshire skies has gotten out.  When a house comes on the market here, it sells in a day or two.

So now we're just waiting for the next one to come on the market, so that we can jump on it.

We had a few busy weeks where we were visiting towns non-stop, but it feels like we're settling in a bit now.  I don't have my scanner or art supplies with me, but I will be tackling outstanding bugs in an update soon.

Thank you for your patience during this transition.

#10 Re: Main Forum » Happy Birthday Jason! » 2020-11-24 14:17:12

Hey, thanks everyone!

It was a weird birthday, away from home...

#11 Main Forum » Fixing a crash (servers updating) » 2020-11-01 23:06:30

Replies: 3

The server crashed twice in the past few days.  I located the problem in the code, and fixed it.  Servers are updating to install the fix.

#12 News » Update: Homeland Biome Bands » 2020-10-29 19:34:49

Replies: 28


I'm still on the road this week, evaluating potential places to move to as part of the Great California Exodus, but I managed to implement some substantial changes.

Homelands determine where you and your other family members can have babies, and they exist to ensure that people remain at least somewhat geographically separate.  Separate towns are more interesting than one big town for a variety of reasons (trade, transportation, etc.)  Historically, your family homeland was determined by wherever your family settled down and built a functional well.

Specialty biomes determine what your family is good at, and what they have to offer other families.  Your family has a corner on the market in whatever biome you specialize in.  Historically, specialty biomes of all kinds were scattered at random across the whole map.

But specialty biomes and homelands were not tied together in any way.  In fact, it was possible for your family to settle, and make their homeland, in an area that was far away from your specialty biome.  Thus, it was possible that another family, when seeking you out for help with your specialty, might need to lead your back closer to their homeland to find an instance of your biome.  When this happens, it doesn't feel very much like trade.  Furthermore, if you settle near a specialty biome other than your own, that nearby area is effectively dead, unusable space for you and your village.  You can't build there, at least not without the help of distant specialists.

So why don't people generally live in and around their specialty biome?  That would make more sense, and solve both of these problems.

In this update, your family's homeland is no longer defined by where you build a well, but instead connected to a new horizontal band on the map that contains your specialty biome.  In fact, that specialty biome only occurs in your band, and nowhere else on the map.  Other non-specialty biomes occur everywhere, exactly as they did before, but the snow biome occurs only in the north-most horizontal band, and the jungle and desert occur only in the two south-most bands.  In between these bands, there's a band with no specialty biomes at all (the centers of the gray rocky areas have nothing but more gray rocky areas), and this serves as the homeland band for the language specialists.  They make up for not having a resource specialty by having a bit more iron veins in their homeland.

If your're looking for snow, you can walk north.  If you're looking for jungle or desert, you can walk south.  Historically, looking for a particular specialty biome involved quite a lot of trial and error.  And now, when seeking out a biome expert, you will find plenty of the desired biome around them where you find that expert.  This also gives the map a more cohesive, regional feel.

Thanks to Twisted for proposing this change.

In addition, several bugs and issues with follower gates have been fixed, and property fences now decay more slowly.

#13 Main Forum » Update is done, anyone find any bugs in the code changes? » 2020-10-29 00:42:02

Replies: 4

Content changes are minimal: … 0...master

Not sure why unreleased in OneTech isn't up-to-date, but most of the stuff shown there has already been released.

Code changes are here: … 1...master

Please email me if you find anything amiss:  jasonrohrer AT fastmail DOT fm

#15 Re: Main Forum » Coming soon: Specialty Biome and Homland geographic banding » 2020-10-19 18:28:11

Interesting question about white folks.  I suppose we could experiment with making them homeland-free, so they really can roam anywhere and join villages.

Wells will still spawn on grids, and tap out iron mines, etc.  The rest of the mechanics won't change.

#16 Re: Main Forum » Coming soon: Specialty Biome and Homland geographic banding » 2020-10-19 18:25:44

I don't think twisted's maps show this, but each family would have the same width "band" for their homeland.  Maybe 300 tiles tall.

Beyond that, further to the North and South would be the end of the specialty biomes entirely.  So Gingers or Desert folks wouldn't have "bigger" homelands than anyone else.  In those regions, there will just be mountains in the "highest spots" in the topographical map.

White folks would only have their official homeland in the middle, even though there ARE mountains in the "no man's lands" further North and South.

#17 Main Forum » Coming soon: Specialty Biome and Homland geographic banding » 2020-10-19 16:14:23

Replies: 71

This idea was proposed by Twisted.


  • Homelands are somewhat confusing and magical (connected to wells, but why?) and don't correspond to the specialty biomes.

  • Specialty biomes are spread all over the place and don't really feel like regions.

  • Because of the random placement, finding a particular specialty biome is an exercise in trial and error.

  • You may have specialty biomes right near your home town that you can't access, can't build in, etc.  They might block your building of local roads, for example.

  • Getting resources from someone else's specialty biome (aka trade) very often involves THEM coming to YOU and getting resources out of their specialty biome that is closest to you.  You travel to find them, but not to reach their region.

  • BUT... all families need access to the non-special biomes, so we don't want to make a region that is 100% arctic, because even the gingers can't reasonably settle there for all their needs.


  • Map layout and non-special biome placement will remain generally the same (swamp, green, yellow, and gray around "special" topographic rings)

  • Instead of being placed randomly in the "highest" topographic rings throughout the map, specialty biomes will occur in five horizontal bands.

  • The northern-most band will contain snow, the next band will contain mountains, the next band will contain jungle, and the south-most band will contain desert

  • Outside these bands (further north and south), there will be no special biomes, and gray mountains will exist wherever special biomes would normally be.

  • These bands will also become the permanent "homeland" areas of each skin tone (with the white language-expert folks having the mountain band as their homeland).  Each skin tone can build and breed freely anywhere in their horizontal band, which will stretch infinitely to the east and west, and homelands will be unhooked from well-building.

  • Eves will be placed in their appropriate bands

  • Note that each geographic band will also contain ALL of the non-special biomes, in the current layout.  The only change is where the special biome would be.  Before, it would be random.  Now, it will be picked based on which geographic band we're in.


  • Homeland regions, and the act of returning home, will make more visual sense.  Coming back to a region where there's snow around... sigh of relief.

  • Finding a given specialty biome will be more intuitive.  Walk south or north, depending on what you're looking for.

  • Finding more of a given specialty biome (like when looking for a particular resource) will be much easier.  Just keep exploring the highest topographic rings in your current band by walking east or west. (Before, if you were looking for more snow, you could keep looking at the "top" of the mountain regions, but you might find yourself in a large patch of desert or jungle).

  • Trade will involve both finding the appropriate people AND visiting the appropriate region, because the appropriate people will automatically live in that region.

  • Will no longer have weirdness of snow existing right near the jungle.

  • White language expert families will have more mountains near their wells, giving them an iron boost to make up for their lack of specialty resources

NOTE:  Twisted's original idea involved "no man's land" bands between the bands, where there's only mountain, as depicted in his images below.  I'm going to skip that part of the idea for now, and just have the bands and homelands butt up against each other.  I can always add the no-man's land buffer zones later, if needed.

Old map:


New Map:


New map with bands highlighted:


#18 Re: Main Forum » Another report from the road (again) » 2020-10-07 23:11:50

Hey, Karltown, we passed through IL on our way, and it seemed like a very nice place.  We didn't go too close to Chicago, but took a look around Naperville, Batavia, and Geneva.  Naperville contains some of the prettiest neighborhoods that I've ever seen anywhere.  Like living in a doll house or an oil painting.

We also took a hike through Spears Woods, which beautiful.

Why New Hampshire?  It's a place where freedom-loving people (like me) might fit in.  Low crime, low unemployment, low taxes, low religious-ness, high IQs, and much more affordable housing.  Not California weather, but no place in the US has California weather.  And much closer to family (which is in NYC and Ohio).

#19 Main Forum » Another report from the road (again) » 2020-10-04 13:47:11

Replies: 10

You're probably wondering what's going on with this week's update.

Wildfire smoke got bad in our hometown of Davis again (new "Glass" fire in Napa).  At this point, we've logged almost 7 solid weeks of unbreathable air, with only a few days here and there where we could actually go outside.

So, we're on the road again, driving across the country as a family, and investigating other places to live, potentially.  New Hampshire is at the top of the list, currently, but we're still not sure about it.

With election season (including October surprises), COVID, and continued riots here in the US....  it's a wild and uncertain time, for sure.

Updates will be on hold for at least a week or two.  At some point, we'll be stopping for a while in the NYC area, and I should be able to at least tackle some bugs for an update or two from the road (but I don't have a scanner or light table with me on this trip).

And if anything goes terribly wrong in my absence (like major server outages or whatever), please email me:  jasonrohrer AT fastmail DOT fm

Wondible just emailed me about some trouble with the public data server, which I'll look into and fix from the next hotel stop (Lincoln, NE).

#20 News » Update: Solo Challenge » 2020-09-25 20:11:14

Replies: 26


A bunch of impactful changes this week, mostly inspired by the deluge of new players from the recent Steam sale.

First of all, there's now a second phase in the tutorial, meant to help new players get accustomed to the game in a less high-pressure situation.  New players often just want to experiment and learn crafting without having a whole village depending on their efficiency.  Furthermore, being plopped into a thriving and cluttered village as a new player can be overwhelming.  You just learned to chop kindling with a hatchet in the tutorial, and suddenly you find yourself in an environment with dozens of unknown tools.  Yes, getting born into the middle of an existing situation is a fundamental premise of the game, but it's not a great environment in which to experiment with the basics.

So, after the main tutorial, there's now an optional solo challenge.  You are thrown out into the wilderness, naked and alone, to try your hand at solo survival.  You can opt out of this right away, if you want, or you can keep trying until you pass the challenge by surviving from scratch until age 60.  For new players who don't opt out, they will enter the main game at least knowing how to take care of themselves in a hostile environment.

Since the game keeps track of which phases of the tutorial have been passed (or bypassed), and no one has passed this second phase yet, even veteran players will find themselves thrown into the solo challenge at least once.

And of course, just like you can revisit the tutorial whenever you want, you can revisit this solo challenge too, almost like an alternate play mode (which many players have already been simulating by connecting to low population servers).

Next, tool slots have been disabled.  I was never fully satisfied with tool slots, since most players just ignored them, and they didn't really contribute to interesting cooperative interactions.  However, they were still in there, pestering you with endless DING messages as you went about your business.

The behavior of expert way stones have been expanded to help you find poly-lingual people:  if you touch your own expert way stone, you are directed toward the closest language expert.

New players start with a fitness score of 0 now, instead of 30.  This means that they generally see their scores go up in the beginning, which is good for morale, but it also means that having a new player as a baby will be likely to help, not hurt, your own gene score (as long as you help a new player live longer than 0 years, you will earn points).

And finally, dealing with griefers.  More players means more griefers.

Personal curses now last 90 days instead of 30 days (don't forget that you can always forgive someone if needed).  And curse labels (DOLL KING or whatever appears in black above the cursed person's head) are now shared between players, instead of being unique per cursing player.  So the same person, when cursed, always has the same label for everyone who has cursed them.  Thus, players can compare notes about griefer behavior.

For quite a while, it has been very hard for solo griefers or small groups of griefers to kill.  Killing requires some form of village consensus, either through a large enough posse or through convincing the village leader to exile the target.  Since leaders tend to be high-fitness individuals, griefers have a hard time becoming leaders.

However, griefers can still cause plenty of trouble in other ways.  Planting the wrong crops, moving stuff around, stealing stuff, and hiding stuff in the woods.  Yes, you can eventually convince the leader to exile them, and then eventually hunt them down to kill them (if they don't get away first), but all of that takes time.  Meanwhile, they can keep causing trouble.  Killing is also a pretty severe way to deal with a thief, but so far, it has been the only way.

This week brings you a new, less sever way:  ally gates.  Leaders can mark certain gates, designating them for ally access only.  All allies of that leader can move through that gate.  To stop someone from moving through the gate, the leader just needs to exile that person.  And the ownership of the gate is inherited by the next leader when the current leader dies.  Thus, you now have a new way to stop a trouble-maker:  exile them, and suddenly, they can no longer travel in and out of the village, through the gate.  You can even trap them inside, making them easier to confront and deal with.

The other nice thing about ally gates is that they are spring-loaded, so they automatically open and close as you walk through (and automatically keep non-allies out).

And sports cars can smash mosquito swarms on their windshields.

#21 Re: Main Forum » Thanks Jason. » 2020-09-25 20:00:50

Okay, some stats about the one-life players:

6,239 people played only one life, out of 88,033 who got past the tutorial and at least played a life.  So 7% played only one life.

708 people who only lived one life lived to 50.

304 people lived to 60 on their first life and then never played again.

Can you imagine that?

On the other hand, 2,551 people lived only one life and died younger than 10.

1,147 lived only one life and died younger than 5.

What a waste of $20 for these people, wow.

Anyway, the point is that even for the 708 people who had what was probably an "excellent" first life, they weren't compelled to play again.

With this many people in the pool, this might just be statistical noise.... you know, the 708 people who had their computer break after their first game or whatever other event that intervened and made them forget about OHOL.

#22 Re: Main Forum » Thanks Jason. » 2020-09-25 19:53:37

Grim, Noita currently has 800+ players.

So I don't think the hardness is scaring people off.  And having only 4 wand slots isn't what makes it hard, anyway....  There are other reasons why OHOL isn't a "sticky game" that keeps lots of people playing and playing, the main one being that your play experience is interrupted every hour.  The end of a each life is a great "stopping point," and the startup cost for the next life is high, and the duration of the next life is known (a whole hour?).  So there's no tendency to say, "It's late, but I'll just play one more quick game."  In Noita, that tendency is there in spades, and "one more quick game" often lasts 30 or 40 minutes if you end up having a good run.... and then you look at the clock, yikes!  OHOL never tricks you in that way.

In fact, there are a number of people (I've spoken to some) who literally only played ONE OHOL life.  They LOVED it, had a great mother, had children, took care of them, experienced an amazing story, and died of old age in their first life.  They quit at that point, having something else to do instead of playing another hour, and never came back.  I'll get some hard stats about that in a second.  How many people played one life and have 50+ minutes of total playtime (tutorial doesn't count).

Regarding character skills in OHOL:

Yeah, there's also the problem of fitting whatever "skills" system into the existing way that crafting works in the game.

There currently aren't better or worse pies, or better or worse kindling.  So how does being an "expert" in pie-making or kindling chopping manifest itself?

The current A + B = C crafting logic doesn't have room in it for "better or worse".  It just wasn't designed that way.

One obvious answer is "speed"... the non-expert makes pies or kindling slower.  But how would that manifest itself?  Standing there bouncing for 2 seconds per non-expert action?  That would really suck.

#23 Main Forum » Brand new players now start with 0 genetic fitness score » 2020-09-25 05:45:53

Replies: 16

Before, brand new players started out with scores of 30.

Thus, if you took care of them, and they died younger than 30, you would lose points.

Now, there's no way to go but up, at least for the first few lives.

So getting a brand new player as a baby will always be a blessing in terms of your gene score.

#24 Re: Main Forum » Thanks Jason. » 2020-09-25 05:44:01

Yeah, this is a weird one.

When I go back and read that initial post, I still wish the game was more like what that post was trying to achieve.  Difficult decisions, agonizing trade-offs, etc.  Carefully planning out and optimizing your interactions in relation to the interactions of your village-mates.

But tool slots didn't engender this feeling.  Yes, lots of annoying DING messages to explain what was going on, as you learned things.  But also, I think that people's general annoyance with them led me to weaken them to the point where they had no impact.  By weaken, I mean, "Give you so many slots that you don't usually need to think about them."

I mean, if there were 10 people in your village, and you each only got 3 tool slots, that you would really have to specialize and work together.  But then there's the question of whether this kind of specialization is interesting, and also the tedium that the communication and coordination would entail.  Finding the guy who can use the knife.  Over and over and over.

Furthermore, deciding which tool to learn isn't actually an agonizing decision.  It's an information problem.  If you had a god's eye view of the village, you could easily pick which tool to learn.  So it is possible to make an informed decision, but the process of informing yourself is itself tedious (running around the village asking people what tools need learning).  It's not an agonizing decision, because there is a correct answer available, with enough legwork.  So it's either busy work or random guess.  Most people just randomly guessed (or ignored it entirely until they ran out of slots, and then said, "now what?")

If you have four great wands but only three slots in Noita, the decision is agonizing, but that's not just because of the limited slots.  It's also because measuring which wand is better, in an absolute sense, might actually be impossible.  So you're forced to do your best, using your intuition.

#25 Re: Main Forum » Abuse by Griefers » 2020-09-24 19:09:15

One suggested solution is to make property fences even easier to use, by connecting it to the leadership system.

If you are an ally, you can pass through a gate that the leader owns (the city gate or whatever), and if you're exiled, you suddenly cannot.

This would work.

However, I doubt that people would actually use it.  The leader would have to build a fence around the village with a gate.  It's possible for people to do this already, but they're not doing it.  Yes, it's a pain to add people to the gate, but "MY FAMILY OWNS THIS" is pretty easy.  Yes, they can't remove bad people from the gate.  But I don't think that's the one thing that's stopping them from building gates.

I think it's just an extra complexity that people generally don't have time for, and don't feel strong motivation for.  You only need the gate when you need it.  And once you have a situation where you need a gate (guy stealing stuff), it's too late to build one.  Because this game is trans-generational, people usually behave in reactive ways (we're out of oil, let's go find some) and not based on long-term planning.

So it kinda feels like we need something a bit more automatic to deal with this problem.

You know, like if every village had a fence that magically appeared around it, and the leader automatically owned the gate.  That would work, but be impossible to implement correctly.

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