Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

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ATHATH
 
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Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby ATHATH » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:23 pm #516533

As I was planning out my upcoming nerfs to the autophagocytosis necrosis (halved DPS, less rapid blood loss from the chem threshold effect), acute respiratory distress syndrome (permastunning from the chem threshold effect changed to permaknockdown-ing), and alkali perspiration (cut out the chem production threshold entirely and move the direct burn damage from the symptom into a threshold effect) symptoms, I had a kind of crazy idea: What if I removed all of the "kill symptoms" from virology?

Hear me out here: What if antag virologists were given tools/symptoms to create incredibly annoying viruses (using symptoms like viral DNA activator, hyphema, deafness, narcolepsy, my upcoming EMP symptom, etc.) with instead of tools/symptoms to create deathviruses (using symptoms like autophagocytosis necrosis, ARDS, alkali perspiration, etc.) with? From the feedback that I've gathered from the many victims of my deathviruses, deathviruses aren't really fun to interact with/die to as a non-virologist, especially if the virologist who released said (stealthy) deathvirus(es) has also destroyed the roundstart pandemic (and medical protolathe) boards, leaving you with few options for counterplay before you keel over and fall into crit within 2 minutes of the deathvirus within you reaching stage 4/giving any indication to you that you have it. I feel like releasing wacky mutation/confusion/dizziness/drowsiness/B A L D/whatever viruses instead of deathviruses would be more fun for both the victims of the virus and the virus's creator. It's very clear which damaging symptoms are "objectively the best"; which debuffing symptoms are the best is much more of a subjective thing than an objective thing, IMO. Capitalizing on the effects of your debuffing virus before someone manages to get their act together and cure it could also require more skill on the part of the antag virologist than just our current "challenge" of "stay alive until everyone else dies and occasionally infect people who were able to turn on their internals in time" (I'm not factoring the pre-virus release sabotage in here, of course, since that's fun and would still be thing after this change).

tldr;
Should I remove most of the "kill symptoms" from the game? Deaths from them feel pretty bullshit/unfun (from what I've heard), and they're overshadowing the fun meme and debuffing symptoms.



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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Xeroxemnas » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:40 pm #516541

As much as I hate deathviruses you'd be removing a very potent antag tool and a fun way to scare the absolute shit out of the crew. Pandemics are fucking devastating and create an actual scary environment. The only issue if if nonantags or team antags release deathviruses and those people always get banned anyway.

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Farquaar
 
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Farquaar » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:40 pm #516542

I don't think the issue lies with viruses having kill potential. In my view, viruses should be slow to kill, but hard to cure. There's nothing more deliciously chaotic to see station sick wards filled with dying patients, medical doctors dressed to the nines in PPE as they apply stopgap measures while a cure is desperately under research. Heck, I've had a load of fun desperately putting my workspace under lockdown as my fellow crewmembers pound on the door, begging for shelter from the plague, while I wonder how I'll survive the emergency shuttle.

Basically, kill symptoms are great, so long as the virus has a noticeable impact on how players behave and interact with their environment. Viruses that kill quickly, but are easily cured don't really add much to the game.

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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Arcanemusic » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:42 pm #516543

Ehhhh.
But by doing that, you also reduce the usefulness of virology as a whole. In the rare opportunity to play a traitor virologist, you lose an interesting creative outlet, while at the same time limiting your impact on the station to Nuke Ops, the rare shuttle loan by cargo, and that's about it. Considering that 90% of the time viruses are cured by chemistry exclusively, and no virologist has EVER done a cargo bounty (Probably but it's exceptionally rare anyway), there's so much less for virology to do as a result.

Now, if you really went forward with this, I'd say to make sure that deadly symptoms can still be obtained from peripheral sources like miasma, to make them attainable but exceedingly rare.
That's just my 2 cents though.
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Nabski
 
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Nabski » Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:47 pm #516546

What about something like stage 1-3 require one type of cure and 4-5 another so that curing becomes less difficult. I feel like that would compensate well for a decreased virology level while helping make more interesting scenarios.

I agree that haha you caught this you died is very not fun, and using the lower tier symptoms before they had thresholds just felt limp as an antagonist in comparison.

I do cargo bounties if cargo reaches out to me. I have done single digit self initiative ones, double digit on request ones. They are typically really easy to meet.

ATHATH
 
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby ATHATH » Tue Sep 24, 2019 7:05 pm #516553

Farquaar wrote:I don't think the issue lies with viruses having kill potential. In my view, viruses should be slow to kill, but hard to cure. There's nothing more deliciously chaotic to see station sick wards filled with dying patients, medical doctors dressed to the nines in PPE as they apply stopgap measures while a cure is desperately under research. Heck, I've had a load of fun desperately putting my workspace under lockdown as my fellow crewmembers pound on the door, begging for shelter from the plague, while I wonder how I'll survive the emergency shuttle.

Basically, kill symptoms are great, so long as the virus has a noticeable impact on how players behave and interact with their environment. Viruses that kill quickly, but are easily cured don't really add much to the game.

What if I made kill symptoms deal organ damage instead of direct/primary damage? We'd need to have more/better ways to heal organ damage for that to really work properly, I think, but it's an interesting concept, no?

ARDS -> lung damage that would be reduced the more (or maybe less, encouraging precise gas mixing?) oxygen there is in the air (so if you breathe pure oxygen, you'll be fine, but a mix of oxygen and nitrogen will cause damage to your lungs)
autophago -> blood depletion
alkali -> the same as it was before, but without its "you explode of you're not wet" gimmick and its direct fire damage (so you'd need to try to find a way to keep everyone wet/damp while you try to find a cure?)?
??? -> liver damage that would be slowed (or even paused/halted) by you being drunk (alcohol tends to cause quite a bit of liver damage, though (IIRC)...)?
??? -> brain damage based on the number of people you can see (more people -> more brain damage)
??? -> heart damage that'd deliver (further) a spike of heart damage whenever you take more than a certain amount of damage in a single hit?

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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby deedubya » Wed Sep 25, 2019 6:25 am #516641

Every other department has a method of causing massive destruction and body counts, so why wouldn't virology?
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Dr_bee » Wed Sep 25, 2019 11:16 am #516666

deedubya wrote:Every other department has a method of causing massive destruction and body counts, so why wouldn't virology?


Most other jobs that can do that require a bit more interaction to cause the death than viro, with the possible exception of toxins. Also other methods are more obvious.

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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby XDTM » Wed Sep 25, 2019 7:23 pm #516721

I'm making some progress on a complete rework that'd address this by gating the most lethal symptoms behind either lategame, antag tools, or interdepartmental cooperation in the form of research.
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Sandshark808 » Thu Sep 26, 2019 5:45 am #516821

XDTM wrote:I'm making some progress on a complete rework that'd address this by gating the most lethal symptoms behind either lategame, antag tools, or interdepartmental cooperation in the form of research.

Will their acquisition be less random? Because as of right now it still takes a stupidly long time to make a good virus if your RNG is bad with the limited materials (like Uranium) that the worst symptoms require.
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OFQ
 
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby OFQ » Thu Sep 26, 2019 8:54 am #516836

What if fast death symptoms will reduce transmission drastically (like they would IRL) this way virologist antag still can use them to assassinate target with a syringe gun but as a greafing mechanism they will be much less effective?
As a slight offtopic, adding ability to make sentient disease/symptom triggers would make virology much more fun even with hard nefs. It just lacks the layer of complexity most of other occupations have. So at this point all the fun comes from trolling people with gimmicky symptoms or murderboning.
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ATHATH
 
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby ATHATH » Fri Sep 27, 2019 5:57 pm #517065

XDTM wrote:I'm making some progress on a complete rework that'd address this by gating the most lethal symptoms behind either lategame, antag tools, or interdepartmental cooperation in the form of research.

In all fairness, you also said that I shouldn't make many virology PRs because you were working on a virology rework back in July. We can still work on improving virology while we wait for your big change(s).

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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby XDTM » Mon Sep 30, 2019 5:19 pm #517476

Of course, it's definitely taking far longer than i thought, i was just sharing my approach to the problem.
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Deepwoods
 
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Re: Removing most "kill symptoms" from virology

Postby Deepwoods » Mon Oct 07, 2019 9:56 am #518346

There are a few potential solutions to virology. 2 virologists, a competent AI and players who understand that Medical cyborgs can take over the entire virology lab if things go to hell and the AI needs to sleepytime the virologists on staff or if the virologists fall to their own pathogen. Medborg is amazingly strong in this regard. It can extract blood samples, go around testing the supervirus, and then formulate and dispense a cure without any risk to itself beyond traitors trying to stop it. And if traitors try to stop it then the Medborg can either saw them if the gloves are off or overdose them with epinephrin to where they can no longer stand and then lock them in a closet.


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