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En explaination on how the combat system will work in the hardcore sandbox survival & exploration game Boundless.
Posted by Buttergoose on Aug 20th, 2012
We’ve had some questions regarding the combat system lately, so I took some time writing down our design philosophy on combat in Boundless!
There will definitely be fighting in Boundless. However, the combat system in Boundless won’t have the same role as combat has today in most games. The progression system in Boundless will be based on exploration and discovery, while enemies will be more of an obstacle than a source of loot or experience points. Enemies will be rather rare, and will take a lot of preparation to battle. Fighting an enemy won’t be an obvious choice in Boundless, as it is in most other games.
Preparation will be important for many reasons. First of all, you’ll never want to rush headfirst into a battle without a plan, since having an open wound or a broken bone is quite a big deal in Boundless. Furthermore, you probably won’t be running around with all your armor and weapons equipped, unless you’re specifically hunting for creatures.
For example, you might find a hostile creature nesting outside a cave that you want to explore. Charging the animal without thinking is probably not a good idea; instead you'll want to travel home to eat, sleep, and rest first. You’ll want to make sure you don’t have any wounds or diseases, and you’ll want to have a big stash of food and water at home in case you’d come home badly injured and unable to forage for food while you recover. We will also try to give enemies a behavior that the player can observe, learn and exploit. For example, if you watch the creature from afar and learn when it goes to sleep, you will have a big advantage on your side. Some creatures might drop useful loot, but fighting creatures in Boundless will often be more of a resource investment than a resource gain.
When it comes to the actual fighting-system, it will be largely based on the kind of weapon you’re using. We haven’t started making the weapons at all, but you can expect both melee and projectile-type weapons.
To sum up, there will definitely be fighting in Boundless. However, the fighting won’t be at all similar to what you’re used to. We’ve already promised you that Boundless will be unlike anything you’ve ever played before, and we’re very keen on keeping that promise.