Continuing our series about RPG features, our topic today is XP, leveling, and specializations in Dex.
As you progress through the game, you are rewarded with XP. Experience points are awarded mainly for: 1) mission completion, 2) overcoming enemies (kills, takedowns, stealth performance), 3) exploration, and 4) hacking.
When you reach the required amount of XP to level up, you are awarded skill points. Skill points can be assigned to one of six specializations. We were considering a more elaborate branching skill tree, but at the moment we have decided on the following specializations and enhancements:
- Firearms – more damage with ranged weapons, better accuracy, faster holster and reload.
- Martial Arts – more damage in melee, faster combat moves, additional combat moves.
- Endurance – more HP, additional Energy Slots for implants, ability to install more advanced implants.
- Hacking – stronger Avatar skills, more Firewall HP, additional Avatar skills and software, ability to enter more advanced parts of cyberspace.
- Street Lore – better lock picking, stealth-related skills, dialogue-related skills.
- Gadgets – ability to use more advanced equipment and gain more from using it (some of the consumables and passive upgrades become more effective).
If you’re familiar with the system used in the Mass Effect series or Shadowrun Returns, you’ll feel at home here as well. Each of the six specializations boosts your attributes in some way with each point assigned. Furthermore, for every three levels of the specialization attained, you earn something more special – a unique new ability or an additional boost.
For example, the Endurance specialization simply grants you more HP per assigned skill point, but each third level of it unlocks an additional Energy Slot, thus allowing you to activate more implants. Similarly, the Hacker specialization improves your Avatar attributes in augmented reality, plus every third level of it gives you an additional new ability to use against malware and intrusion countermeasures in cyberspace.
Note: This is one of the features undergoing constant iterations. In the final game, there might be a slightly different system, different skills, etc., as a result of our design decisions, your feedback, and community beta-testing.
Let us know your comments and suggestions. We are always happy to receive them and glad to respond, or even to focus our updates on topics you are most interested in!