Cult - What can be fixed?

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Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Fikou » Tue Mar 09, 2021 4:17 am #594892

Hello, timber asked for someone to open a thread for this in policy-bus, what issues do you see with cult and how do you think it can be improved? Personally I feel like it's really flawed, with the main problem with it is how much mechanics there are, even players that played cult over 30 times still usually don't know the functions of most spells/runes, and alt-tabbing for learning tons of different stuff as a conversion antag really sucks, especially since your teammates and ghosts will shit on you for not doing anything (talking as a person that shits on people). I think this can be solved by either really streamlining our runes/spells or doing what /vg/ cult (maybe our old cult too) did, with no spells, and instead transferring runes onto paper so everything is in one list (it shouldnt be paper though probably.).
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby carshalash » Tue Mar 09, 2021 4:31 am #594898

Did you have a stroke while making that image?

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Fikou » Tue Mar 09, 2021 4:32 am #594900

carshalash wrote:Did you have a stroke while making that image?

i do not recall, that image was made like a year ago

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby wesoda25 » Tue Mar 09, 2021 4:38 am #594903

Mechanically flawed? Kinda. Intrinsically flawed? Depends who you ask.

My greatest grievance with cult is that it’s not really meant for dynamic. It’s a highly powerful, highly disruptive antag which forces the station into the gameplay loop of: steamroll them or get steamrolled yourself.

A solution that I thought of a while ago to this problem (if you consider it to be one), would be to shift cult’s objectives away from ending the round. Instead, give them various objectives the likes of which they had in the past (examples in a spoiler below), and make summoning a rare objective. I believe this would be especially welcome on MRP, as it makes their purpose far less linear, and players wouldn’t be forced into going unga.

I believe some general cult nerfs would be welcome alongside this. Their power is currently based on the demands of summoning; if that were to no longer be their purpose, they wouldn’t need to be so strong. Things which first come to mind is to enforce teamwork, so I think removing summon cult ghost, removing shades ability to be used for runes, and possibly even removing the damage heal from conversion. Alongside these nerfs we could also cut some content out, to help with the diagram fikou attached.
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Examples of possible objectives:
Have X amount of cultists escape alive, steal x items, activate x apocalypse runes, sacrifice x, y, and/or x, etc
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby nianjiilical » Tue Mar 09, 2021 4:57 am #594915

Fikou wrote:really streamlining our runes/spells


okay its 12:30am and im brainfogged heres a proposal

1) merge the offer rune, empower rune, revive rune and twisted construction spell into a single 2x2/3x3 heretic-style super-rune. offer people on it for convert, offer corpses for revives, offer plasteel/borgs for runed metal/constructs, and make it give the empower rune effect. also make it count as a pylon for healing/area conversion once the cult has red eyes/halos, count as a teleport rune, and convert water into unholy water (formerly an altar ability)

2) give cultists some sort of codex analogue. using it in-hand brings up a list of spells which all cost something (blood i guess?); move the following to this spell menu:

-summon dagger
-summon combat gear (tie it to red eyes/halo?)
-conceal presence
-summon cult ghost. having a ghost summoned now deals rapid stamina damage and/or bloodloss until cancelled instead of making you stand on a rune
-ascend as dark spirit. requires standing on the big main rune
-shuttle curse. also requires standing on the big main rune, can only be done once per person

3) move the following into the runed metal's crafting menu, only craftable if on a main rune or near a forge:

-construct shells
-eldritch longsword
-nar'sian hardsuit armor

4) merge the altar, forge and archives into one forge, with an independent cooldown per player. remove eldritch whetstone and make hitting the forge with a weapon sharpen it (move the ritual dagger's move/deconstruct to right click)

5) remove hallucination spell because i have literally never seen it be used

6) merge apocalypse and nar'sie into one rune, because apocalypse "uses up" a nar'sie summon spot anyway

the end result of all this:

-6 runes, down from 10
-6 spells, down from 10
-1 building that makes 4 items total, down from 3 buildings that make 10 items total
-1 additional cultist item (the book)


granted this would be a net buff to cult which it probably doesnt need right now so compensation nerf as necessary
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby cacogen » Tue Mar 09, 2021 5:47 am #594927

IT'S TIME TO REDESIGN CULT AGAIN
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Tue Mar 09, 2021 12:28 pm #594975

Cult's biggest problem is its learning curve. I've watched playtest sessions of new players first hand and have seen them get converted to cult, and be absolutely clueless. We expect them to, mid round, read a fuck huge wiki page that describes literally everything, and if they mess up thet hurt their ENTIRE team. Contrast this with revs, which has a clear and obvious goal with an obvious process to do so. I don't think there's a way to fix cult without either turning it into a completely separate gamemode, or by making it even more a reskin of revs.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Sparkezel » Tue Mar 09, 2021 1:06 pm #594979

What I like in cult is exactly that you have more toys you need knowledge about and skill to use properly. Its much more interesting than revs because most of the time its just asap flash whole cargo then most of medbay and few other areas, and even then the same problem can happen like with cult. I had many expiriences as revhead where people I recruited to revolution just watched me get beaten by one person. Making revs not end the round was a mistake in my opinion and I hope that cult won't follow the same line.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby NoxVS » Tue Mar 09, 2021 2:13 pm #594990

Jaredfogle wrote:Cult's biggest problem is its learning curve. I've watched playtest sessions of new players first hand and have seen them get converted to cult, and be absolutely clueless. We expect them to, mid round, read a fuck huge wiki page that describes literally everything, and if they mess up thet hurt their ENTIRE team. Contrast this with revs, which has a clear and obvious goal with an obvious process to do so. I don't think there's a way to fix cult without either turning it into a completely separate gamemode, or by making it even more a reskin of revs.

And that's cult's limiting factor - How experienced new cultists are with cult. If you have enough knowledgeable people then great, you win. Otherwise you probably lose. There is stuff like the option to legally metacomm as a ghost with 0 cost and no one uses it because barely anyone knows it exists or how to do it. Making cult easier to understand would just mean cult steamrolls everyone more often.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Indie-ana Jones » Tue Mar 09, 2021 2:24 pm #594994

I'm more of a midround balance focused guy, so take my word with a grain of salt, but the bane of cult is definitely its execution barrier. Usually if you have a group antag spawn in with more than one member, its because you expect about only one of them will be competent enough with the role to perform the task expected of them. However, cult requires two cultists to activate the conversion rune, so if you have 3 starter culties and only one good cultie chances are it won't go well unless one the clueless players just wants to sit in maint with a rune and not have fun at all.

However, people's lack of knowledge of how cult works is the balancing factor to cult. If everyone knew all the bullshit cult is capable of and how to do it cult would always win, which feels good for the people who have mastered being a cultist but sucks for everyone else. Ideally, I think the best solution would be to lower the skill floor of cult by a great deal and either nerf the ceiling or give crew some way to match it.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby TheFinalPotato » Tue Mar 09, 2021 7:15 pm #595049

If you're going to attempt to change this aspect of cult, start from basics. The current system will never match what you want without major culling. Just do it.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby imsxz » Tue Mar 09, 2021 8:28 pm #595062

too many mechanics. overwhelming for new players, overloaded for experienced players. There was an old PR, can't find it for the life of me, but it overhauled cult to just be a small group antag that didnt convert and had a couple simple but difficult objectives to pull off. It got closed because nobody wanted to try it, of course, but I liked the direction it was going and it's kinda surprising that it didn't inspire anyone else. Of course, it wasn't as interesting as current cult, but thats the price of simplifying your gamemode I suppose. Cult is interesting to some people because there's just so much to it. You just can't eat your cake and still have it, I guess.

Alternatively: add your interesting mechanics to a simple cult mode but somehow obscure them from the minds of inexperienced cultists? i dunno how you could do this in a balanced way but thats all i got
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby nianjiilical » Tue Mar 09, 2021 8:36 pm #595064

okay so cutting cult down to the absolute basics

-you draw runes on the ground and cut yourself on them to prepare spells
-you drag people onto those runes to offer them to narsie and convert them to your side
-you need to ritualistically sacrifice a target
-once you have enough cultists you loudly summon narsie somewhere

how much can reasonably be removed from the mode? if you think about it, the only things truly necessary to win as cult are

-offer rune
-cult dagger
-stun spell
-shackle spell
-nar'sie rune

of course i dont think many people would be in favor of removing things like teleport runes, so the question then becomes what can be simplified/removed without seriously taking away options people use

people have brought up vg cult that uses paper talismans and that could be a decent replacement for some prepared spells, maybe have the spells become physical things you make at the cult archives/forge/whatever?
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Fhaxaris » Tue Mar 09, 2021 11:28 pm #595080

Part of the problem of cult for new players is the introduction to its mechanics. One second you are doing your job, the next you are assigned to a new team in a dark maint room with colored circles and some buildings you've never seen before. Time to go to the wiki before I mess something up! Shoving new players into a completely foreign environment like that completely overwhelms them. We need to ease the players into the mechanics instead of effectively throwing them into a new department they have never even had a glimpse of and expecting them to NOT use the wiki.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Tue Mar 09, 2021 11:52 pm #595087

nianjiilical wrote:okay so cutting cult down to the absolute basics

-you draw runes on the ground and cut yourself on them to prepare spells
-you drag people onto those runes to offer them to narsie and convert them to your side
-you need to ritualistically sacrifice a target
-once you have enough cultists you loudly summon narsie somewhere

how much can reasonably be removed from the mode? if you think about it, the only things truly necessary to win as cult are

-offer rune
-cult dagger
-stun spell
-shackle spell
-nar'sie rune

of course i dont think many people would be in favor of removing things like teleport runes, so the question then becomes what can be simplified/removed without seriously taking away options people use

people have brought up vg cult that uses paper talismans and that could be a decent replacement for some prepared spells, maybe have the spells become physical things you make at the cult archives/forge/whatever?


not really, but at that point you just have magic revs except the conversion takes a little bit longer.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby cacogen » Wed Mar 10, 2021 12:03 am #595089

Using the wisdom of the crowd to yet again redesign (via committee) a cult gamemode that WILL work this time. Paper talismans is how it used to be. Presumably there was good thinking behind their removal. I would list the problems, the potential solutions and pick from those until I had enough to cover everything. Then I would write a design document.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby oranges » Wed Mar 10, 2021 10:39 pm #595180

delete it because it's basically rev if the designer spent all their time fighting against the ss13 sandbox instead of embracing it like rev does.

you could literally just bring back the paper convert talismans (which was basically rev flashes) and it would be a better gamemode

keep some of the runes if you want flavour but the rest is pointless garbage

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby CPTANT » Wed Mar 10, 2021 11:34 pm #595187

Fundamental rewrite: Ditch conversions and constructs and let cultists gain powers from sacrificing people.

Start from that and rebalance completely.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Thu Mar 11, 2021 12:21 am #595193

... so heretics?
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby NoxVS » Thu Mar 11, 2021 12:27 am #595194

Jaredfogle wrote:... so heretics?

just axe cult and fold all the cool stuff into heretic, problem solved
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Thu Mar 11, 2021 12:32 am #595195

i agree
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Yenwodyah » Thu Mar 11, 2021 1:00 am #595198

Cult is fine as it is right now
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Cobby » Thu Mar 11, 2021 7:38 am #595220

I quite like the cult design of having a wide array of items in their arsenal, and for me I find that steep learning curve enjoyable.

What I don’t like in the current iteration is that instead of pushing the design into a more subtle takeover of the station that requires the cult as a team entity to push things along, we gave them increased visibility for the crew but made it so one guy (oneman, oldman?) can carry and made every aspect of converting inconsequential (heck if blood drain was removed first we might still had soft-aheal for converted).

Heck you can literally murderbone with abandon on cult with minimal punishment, as offer rune guarantees a body in your team whether the victim is dead or alive. Absolutely wild
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby NecromancerAnne » Thu Mar 11, 2021 11:09 am #595225

Cobby wrote:I quite like the cult design of having a wide array of items in their arsenal, and for me I find that steep learning curve enjoyable.

What I don’t like in the current iteration is that instead of pushing the design into a more subtle takeover of the station that requires the cult as a team entity to push things along, we gave them increased visibility for the crew but made it so one guy (oneman, oldman?) can carry and made every aspect of converting inconsequential (heck if blood drain was removed first we might still had soft-aheal for converted).

Heck you can literally murderbone with abandon on cult with minimal punishment, as offer rune guarantees a body in your team whether the victim is dead or alive. Absolutely wild


For the longest time, and I think still can, three cultists can produce enough cultists from the ghost pool to finish the summon. So much bullshit under bullshit that is doesn't need.

But frankly, if you took away all that bullshit, the codes a husk and just revs again. Some stuff in it is neat, but not as a tdm style conversion mode. Definitely nothing which uses admin tools, that's for fucking sure.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby WineAllWine » Thu Mar 11, 2021 11:44 am #595229

Cult is unironically my favourite antag to play as and against, but I'm aware I'm in the minority for this :(

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Irad » Thu Mar 11, 2021 5:53 pm #595252

WineAllWine wrote:Cult is unironically my favourite antag to play as and against, but I'm aware I'm in the minority for this :(

I think this is the first time I agree with you in my life. :happy:


cult has two problems: no new player tutorial. this is a shame, because all you need to do is: if you are not going loud: follow whoever converted you, help them convert with stun.
if loud: summon weapon and kill things until dead, work together with someone that has a cult symbol.

the other issue is that they have a feature that has more or less one use: kill AI and comms. As an AI main, this is why I dislike cult, you know that sooner rather than later a angry ghost will come and round remove you with zero counterplay - if you hide somewhere, they can find you with dark ascension. Meanwhile, killing communications is very beneficial for cult, and should probably remain.

also please don't fucking sack cult because it has advanced and strange interactions, this game is interesting because it has a lot of separate systems that have the potential to produce unexpected results, it's not primarily a investigation game where you try to figure out who is the bad guy.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Thu Mar 11, 2021 11:47 pm #595271

can't chap bless your core and find comms? or does that expire
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Capsandi » Fri Mar 12, 2021 12:05 am #595275

A minor point; cults get way too large to care about any one member after 10 minutes into the round. Perhaps a hard limit on how many cultists there can be would allow the mode to achieve the niche of stealth team antag. I find that once the cult has 8 members, I don't even respond to the cries of other cultists because the steamroll has already begun. Of course a good solution is likely more complex than putting a hard limit on how many cultists could be active, but its worth thinking of. Maybe conversion should be removed entirely so the mode can be more than just OP revs?

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby WineAllWine » Fri Mar 12, 2021 12:46 am #595278

chap can bless your core or a competent cult will convert you. These are all fun mechanics.

If we're seriously considering removing cult I would want an actual vote, stratified by Rp-level. It's removal would make me seriously consider moving to a downstream

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Fri Mar 12, 2021 1:00 am #595279

depends on who "we" is--maintainers can't remove it even if (read: though) we want to, because it's in config. it is entirely a head admin decision.

what we're able to do is rework it to actually be a good gamemode, but that's much much easier said than done.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby saprasam » Fri Mar 12, 2021 5:29 am #595286

WineAllWine wrote:Cult is unironically my favourite antag to play as and against, but I'm aware I'm in the minority for this :(
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Irad » Fri Mar 12, 2021 9:45 am #595298

Jaredfogle wrote:can't chap bless your core and find comms? or does that expire

they could, but they are also the priority target if cult is public, getting him to ai core is a hassle, and people tend to have a bigger problem in fighting the actual cult.

if cult is not yet public there is zero counterplay apart from screaming "cult real AI core!!!"

I'm not saying no counterplay exists, No /real/ counterplay exists.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Gogodapogostick » Fri Mar 12, 2021 4:59 pm #595318

WineAllWine wrote:Cult is unironically my favourite antag to play as and against, but I'm aware I'm in the minority for this :(

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby cybersaber101 » Sat Mar 13, 2021 9:53 am #595368

Cult needs to be simplified and then some style and new atmosphere added really, It's basically this ugly overly complicated mess of gamer gear and the only people that enjoy it are the ones who spend time staring at the wiki.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby cocothegogo » Sat Mar 13, 2021 2:37 pm #595377

I stopped playing maybe 2018 came back 2020 cult had changed a lot I used to really enjoy the old cult but the amount of runes there are now kinda fucks with my head. Ive got the hang of it now but still don't know how to build shit yet haha. The new cult seems better than old cult though if I actually bothered to learn it
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby BoopBoops » Sat Mar 13, 2021 10:12 pm #595397

Nothing, to me cult seems good.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Sevaaas1 » Tue Mar 30, 2021 2:38 am #596855

i may be extremely late to this thread but i think i agree with imsxz in this one, cult is way too overwhelming for newbies, and way too stressful for experienced people, the moment i spawn in as a roundstart cultist i feel like im a speedrun for a game world record, mainly because at roundstart is very likely that my teammates are newbies or first timers at cult, so i have to act and recruit more people before they act and inevitably, fuck up and expose us, every time im with an experienced player as a roundstart cultist i feel way less pressure, since the work is split more evenly, and even when i convert crewmembers into cult, half of them dont even pick up their dagger, either because they dont care about being a cultist (bc they hate it, or would rather do their job, so they dont help at all), or they dont know how anything about cultist works, in which case i cant stop to teach them how to play it, since its so vast and big that it would take too long, and if i do, it would put me and the whole team at disadvantage since the runes are inevitably gonna be found, since most people do not use the conceal spell.

What i would do to fix it myself, is to change the hierarchy more like to revs, i would make the roundstart cultists significantly more powerful, combine utility spells and give them an in game item so that they can check the description of each spell, i would also, nerf converted crewmember spells and abilities, and limit them to a narrower range of spells, so in the case that they are new, and dont know what to do, they can do a quick reading and get to know the spells in 2-3 minutes, and be useful to the team as soon as possible. I think that this would accomplish a few things, for starters, with only the roundstart cultists having full power, it would force them to be more careful so that they wont die, because if they do, it would greatly weaken the cult, this would allow for a slower round, since they will be more cautious, with the slower speed of the game, if the roundstart cultist is a new player, or doesnt have enough experience and wants to read their abilities and understand them for a while, it will minimize the impact that it has on the team, since there is more time to act, the value of each second is decreased, for converted crewmembers, specially new players, having less skill would allow them to more quickly get into action, since they will be able to know their spells much quicker, also, each spell will have a greater strategic value, since they are now weaker, ideally they would work in teams, and not alone as the current meta is ( grab as many people as you can alone and drag them to maint )

So far, that is all i have to say, if there are any spelling errors, let me know, as english is not my first language

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Arcanemusic » Tue May 04, 2021 5:05 am #599353

imsxz wrote:too many mechanics. overwhelming for new players, overloaded for experienced players. There was an old PR, can't find it for the life of me, but it overhauled cult to just be a small group antag that didnt convert and had a couple simple but difficult objectives to pull off. It got closed because nobody wanted to try it, of course, but I liked the direction it was going and it's kinda surprising that it didn't inspire anyone else. Of course, it wasn't as interesting as current cult, but thats the price of simplifying your gamemode I suppose. Cult is interesting to some people because there's just so much to it. You just can't eat your cake and still have it, I guess.


Any idea where that PR is?
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby pugie » Tue May 04, 2021 9:39 am #599359

Don't revive imsxz you monster
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Rohen_Tahir » Wed May 05, 2021 12:57 pm #599471

saprasam wrote:
WineAllWine wrote:Cult is unironically my favourite antag to play as and against, but I'm aware I'm in the minority for this :(

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby wesoda25 » Sat May 08, 2021 8:39 pm #599738

Only way to really fix cult is to completely restart, as others have said.

Cult is currently built upon two things: conversion and content. Content, to the level that cult possesses, is inherently bad (read mblocks post). Conversion isn't bad on it's own - that's how revs work, and revs is good (or at least not as flawed as cult).

Yet if we remove the content, all we're left is a transparent revs clone. Content is really the only thing which differentiates cult from revs.

So yeah, like imsxz said, why not remove both of them? I remember the PR they were talking about (also cant find it, i think it was made by emma skub?), and it really was ahead of it's time. Remove conversion, give cult a static number of starting cultists which scales based on server pop, and maybe throw them a new cultist every now and then using latejoins.

To reduce the odds of roundstart murderbones, make them weaker. Maybe give them a progression for gaining more power by achieving various tasks (as a team!!!), like heretics do. Diversify the objectives, remove the binary of summoning being the only way to win. Completely re-gear cult to be a new team antagonist with a better place in dynamic.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Stickymayhem » Sat May 08, 2021 11:02 pm #599743

I think cult embraces the sandbox nature of SS13 really well actually. You have a vast array of tools to complete an extremely difficult objective. There's a dozen ways to win, the potential and real execution of subterfuge (like covering red eyes) and a potential for excellent teamwork and organic baser building no other mode offers.

I think cult is a game that could not exist in any other game. It's quintessentially SS13.

If you have experienced cultists, then you can play with experienced cult mechanics. If you have inexperienced cultists, then guiding them through base building or just turning them into constructs would be a better option. I think there's a solution in this aspect: Constructs simplify the cult experience, make it uniquely different to a standard conversion gamemode and turn players with no understanding whatsoever of cult mechanics into useful members of the cult.

I could probably throw together a fleshed out version of this idea, but I think allowing the option to turn someone you've converted into a construct if it's clear they don't have a lot of value as a cultist would be a good solution, maybe with a slight benefit over slaughtering people and using soul shards (e.g., not requiring construct materials but maybe a rune, rune metal and a couple other cultists). That way the experience of the converted player isn't the determiner of their success.

So actually I think the construct aspect of cult holds an interesting solution that wouldn't require dumbing the whole thing down from the experience perspective. When it comes to other problems, it'd be a shame if we lost one of the last bastions of antag complexity.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Sat May 08, 2021 11:25 pm #599747

Stickymayhem wrote:I think cult embraces the sandbox nature of SS13 really well actually. You have a vast array of tools to complete an extremely difficult objective.


Cult gives you a billion bespoke ways to complete your task, while ignoring the rest of what the station has to offer. If you think it "embraces sandbox" in any way, especially compared to revs, then we just have a fundamental disagreement on what the sandbox of SS13 *is*.

Stickymayhem wrote:I could probably throw together a fleshed out version of this idea, but I think allowing the option to turn someone you've converted into a construct if it's clear they don't have a lot of value as a cultist would be a good solution, maybe with a slight benefit over slaughtering people and using soul shards (e.g., not requiring construct materials but maybe a rune, rune metal and a couple other cultists). That way the experience of the converted player isn't the determiner of their success.


The only person who can concretely say they understand cult is the person themselves, who would then also have to understand that completely ditching their body is the *less demanding* choice. It's a bad idea.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Stickymayhem » Sat May 08, 2021 11:50 pm #599748

Jaredfogle wrote:
Stickymayhem wrote:I think cult embraces the sandbox nature of SS13 really well actually. You have a vast array of tools to complete an extremely difficult objective.


Cult gives you a billion bespoke ways to complete your task, while ignoring the rest of what the station has to offer. If you think it "embraces sandbox" in any way, especially compared to revs, then we just have a fundamental disagreement on what the sandbox of SS13 *is*.

Stickymayhem wrote:I could probably throw together a fleshed out version of this idea, but I think allowing the option to turn someone you've converted into a construct if it's clear they don't have a lot of value as a cultist would be a good solution, maybe with a slight benefit over slaughtering people and using soul shards (e.g., not requiring construct materials but maybe a rune, rune metal and a couple other cultists). That way the experience of the converted player isn't the determiner of their success.


The only person who can concretely say they understand cult is the person themselves, who would then also have to understand that completely ditching their body is the *less demanding* choice. It's a bad idea.


I mean I think sandbox is just that, an array of tools to complete your objective. Some interact with the station like base building and apocalypse and some don't. But you have a huge amount of scope for creativity. Just because the skill ceiling is high doesn't mean it can't be in the game, it just needs to facilitate a useful role for less experienced players too.

I think it's plenty SS13 to have cult space base built from stolen station materials and used to drag people kicking and screaming through rune portals to be converted? The unique thing about the game mechanically is the huge number of interacting systems being fucked with with a layer of roleplaying on top.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Yenwodyah » Sun May 09, 2021 2:45 am #599755

Jaredfogle wrote:Cult gives you a billion bespoke ways to complete your task, while ignoring the rest of what the station has to offer. If you think it "embraces sandbox" in any way, especially compared to revs, then we just have a fundamental disagreement on what the sandbox of SS13 *is*.

This is a little silly. If you don't think interacting with other game systems doesn't give you an advantage (hacking, medicine, and construction jump out right away) then you need to play more cult. They get tools that are better for combat than anything nonantags can get but... so does literally every antag. So does sec, even. Outside of straight combat, there's plenty of ways for cult to use game systems for an advantage, especially in the initial "hiding from sec while you convert dudes" phase.

Also, it's a little silly to say "it's not that sandboxy compared to revs" when revs is the most sandboxy antag in the entire game. No gamemode is going to use the game's systems more than the gamemode where the whole point is that you have to fight using only the game's systems.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby ArcaneDefence » Sun May 09, 2021 4:55 am #599761

I searched a few words I figured would've hit this and didn't find any so I guess I'll post it now-
Cult shouldn't be able to softlock out of the summoning because the sacrifice target gets gibbed/dusted.

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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Jaredfogle » Sun May 09, 2021 5:11 am #599762

Yenwodyah wrote:Also, it's a little silly to say "it's not that sandboxy compared to revs" when revs is the most sandboxy antag in the entire game. No gamemode is going to use the game's systems more than the gamemode where the whole point is that you have to fight using only the game's systems.


Which is why cult needs a complete make-over in order to not just not be a revs clone, but also be better than revs, because you will not get better than revs.
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Omega_DarkPotato » Sun May 09, 2021 6:03 am #599764

super funny take but I hate revs and like cult a lot
revs is shit because every single time I play it it feels like a "lol how hard did you powergame before this" because if you're a literal who then you don't stand a chance when Secman McBatong batongs you in the head causing you to deconvert after two hits. Also, it feels like a tiding mess of absolute bullshit because it's not interesting thematically and I've just had repeated bad experiences with it as a revolutionary (and I refuse to play heads of staff because of its existence)


Cult actually gives you the ability to arm yourself up, which means that everyone *can* start on pretty solid ground for cult. (plus it's got an innate team channel for Increased Team Gameplay!! very good.) The problem is newbies don't know how to get to that "pretty solid ground" state. Plus, it IS thematically interesting, and being able to do wacky magic is neat.
I feel like if new players were able to understand the basics more, then people could pull back on the really hard-hitting parts of cult - right now cult wins or loses based on how strong Oldman McCultgod does because he's ancient and extremely robust with cult's extremely powerful capabilities that you only manage to learn through a lot of time. If we had some way to keep cult's "you have the opportunity to start on very solid ground" but brought down the "you can become about as strong as a wizard" to "you can become about as strong as a pretty decent traitor" I'm sure there'd be less problems with it existing, from a player viewpoint.


Also I don't get what's bad with an antagonist forcing people to interact with it on dynamic.
Some antags are weaker, some antags are stronger, sometimes you just have to deal with shit you don't want to deal with but through strife comes good stories, right?


sorry if this post was deranged or hard to follow I'm posting this after about 13 hours of working on a final project for this semester of university and very sleep deprived
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Re: Cult - What can be fixed?

Postby Yenwodyah » Sun May 09, 2021 6:58 am #599767

Yeah, I don't think it's fair to say that cult is just a worse version of rev (or vice versa). They both use conversion, yes, but they offer different experiences.
Cult needs to work to maintain stealth: It's easy to identify a cultist, it's easy to identify a cult base, it's easy to fuck up a conversion and reveal yourself. Rev is inherently stealthy: You can't identify them except with mindshields, they've got no bases, conversion is very easy to do stealthily. It's easy for a head or an officer to walk into a crowd of revs and not notice until they're being beating to death. That doesn't really happen with cult.
The population dynamics of cult and revs are almost opposite. Cult is about a well-armed minority (except when they win and kill everyone) antag group vs. a worse-armed majority; rev is about a poorly-armed majority antag group vs. a well-armed minority.
Cult requires and encourages coordination; revs is all about chaos.
Also, cult has better lore than revs.
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