Survival Points are a resource acquired in Beasts of Bermuda by surviving in the game world. These points can be obtained in several different ways that will be explained here. Currently, Survival Points only serve the purpose of granting a player bragging rights. The Player List sorts players in descending order according to who has acquired the most Survival Points, placing the most well-survived players with the highest scores on the top of the list at all times.
Survival Points will likely serve greater purpose in the coming future of Beasts of Bermuda. A developer blog post was created on the topic here, and represents the very first blog post ever written by the developers of Beasts of Bermuda. The Skin Customization System is planned to require these Survival Points in order for players to create particularly spectacular, bright, vivid, well-decorated, or highly accessorized skins. As a player accumulates more Survival Points, they will be able to continuously throughout the life of their creature improve and add to the look of their creature's skin. The exact algorithm that will be used to determine skin cost has yet to be created by the developers of Beasts of Bermuda, and the current system is fully accessible to players regardless of Survival Points at this time. It is also planned that players will be able to permanently use the skin they have unlocked once they die, but will be unable to further improve upon the skin once their fate has been sealed.
Here I will explain the reasoning behind adding a Survival Point cost behind the full use of the Skin Customization System. First and foremost, most players enjoy the psychology of working towards a goal. This is generic across most genres of gaming, and nearly every successful game has some sort of goal set in mind for the player. Even building simulators such as Sim City have unlockable rewards for players who create successful cities. Often times, without a feeling of progression or accomplishment, players will quickly grow bored of a game, regardless of whether or not the game environment and mechanics are enjoyable. Almost every game has some sort of goal, and Beasts of Bermuda needs a goal of some sort. Our goal will be to allow players to accumulate an increasingly large library of customized skins they have created during creature lives lived in our game world.
Juggling the notion of rewarding players for good play and success without penalizing less fortunate players to the point of making the game experience unenjoyable and frustrating for them was a very heavily pondered problem during the game's earliest days. Beasts of Bermuda strives to be a game enjoyable and accessible to a wide array of players. One potential purpose of Survival Points that I have been very heavily against is any sort of power gains or direct gameplay advantages granted by accumulation of a high score. A player should suffer no survival, gameplay, or combat disadvantage for having a low score or being a newcomer to the game. This allows players interested in riskier or more exploratory behavior to have full power and enjoyment out of the creatures they are playing, regardless of death count. In fact, such behavior may even be rewarded for the particularly adept. Experienced players will likely have accumulated more cosmetic upgrades, but will never, ever have a stats or power advantage over one who has not accumulated game rewards.
A death causes a player to lose all of their survival points.
Gaining Survival Points
Points from Creature Health
Every five seconds, a player will receive additional Survival Points. The amount of points received is computed as the sum of the percentage fullness of their current food, water, and comfort. For example, if the player has 50% of their hunger filled, 100% thirst filled, and 50% comfort, they will receive the sum of 200 total Survival Points every five seconds. Aquatic creatures do not have a thirst resource, and thus have their point computed differently. The points received every five seconds for an aquatic creature is the sum of their food and comfort, multiplied by 1.5.
As these resource fullness values increase or decrease, their point gain will adjust accordingly. The reasoning behind such a dynamic system for gaining Survival Points was such that it motivates players to keep their creature fed, watered, and comfortable without providing harsh punishment should they be unable to meet these needs at some point in time. A player who is having difficulty finding food, finding water, or enduring a stressful scenario will see their rate of point gain slow down during these times of distress. It is not possible to lose Survival Points by having low food, water, or comfort.
Both the total amount of Survival Points a player has accumulated as well as the rate at which they are gaining survival points are displayed on the scoreboard. One can see the total accumulation of Survival Points clearly on the scoreboard. The rate at which a player is gaining points through food, thirst, and comfort, however, is displayed chromatically as the color of the background behind their name. Omnomnomnivore, for example, has a cyan bar. She is rapidly gaining points because her Acrocanthosaurus is well fed, well hydrated, and likely very comfortable. Anomalocaris and mrmaskedman are also playing quite healthy creatures, as their names are displayed in green. Though all ranges are not displayed on this particular screenshot, the total color spectrum ranges from an unhealthy crimson red, to orange, yellow, green, and then bright cyan to represent a very healthy creature. Red bars represent players who are likely undergoing some duration of extreme stress such as crossing an Ocean or suffering the full brunt of a very nasty storm. These players will be gaining very little points in comparison to a healthier creature.
Points from Hunting
Carnivorous players receive Survival Points for successfully hunting other players under certain circumstances. When a hunt is successful and a player is slain, the players in the pack that were nearby when their prey died will be rewarded with Survival Points.
- Points are not awarded for killing your own kind under any circumstances.
- When a player is slain, the players responsible for the hunt will be granted a fraction of the total points the slain player had collected.
- If more than three players are sharing points from a successful hunt, the point value will begin to diminish.
- Hunting creature larger than you will grant more points than hunting creatures smaller than what you are currently playing as.
- A large carnivore such as the Acrocanthosaurus will be granted very little points for killing creatures such as the Velociraptor or the Pachycephalosaurus.
- A small carnivore such as the Velociraptor will be granted a substantial fraction of their prey's points if the prey was a large creature such as a Parasaurolophus.
- Since total point reward is a fraction of the points the player who was slain possessed, feeding kills to a friend will likely not be a very efficient means to increase one's score.
- Herbivores do not gain any points for killing another creature.
- Piscivores currently do gain points for slaying other creatures, but this may be changed in the future.
Points for Exploring
While Herbivores do not gain any Survival Points for killing other creatures, only they are granted additional points for exploring and finding new sources of water. A player who is drinking from water sources their creature still finds to be interesting will accrue points substantially faster than one who is drinking from the same water source repeatedly. Drinking from a water source that is still interesting will yield points while the player is filling their thirst. Once filled on water, the player will receive no additional points for continuing to drink. If a player drinks saltwater, they will lose points in identical value to what they would have gained had they drunk from an interesting freshwater source. This is to ensure that it is mathematically impossible for a player to increase their score by deliberately consuming saltwater, then consuming freshwater, repeatedly to gain point value from filling their thirst meter at interesting freshwater sources.
A player will exhaust their herbivore's interest in a water source after they have filled the equivalent of 100% of water value from that source. Under regular gameplay circumstances, this will likely take anywhere between 15 and 30 minutes depending on how frequently the player tops off their thirst. As a player's creature begins losing interest in a water source, different dialogue will show up in the chat window when they begin drinking from the water source.
- You are excited by a new water source!
- You are still excited by this familiar water source!
- This water source still interests you despite its familiarity.
- This water source is beginning to feel boring.
- You are completely bored of this water source.
When you are completely bored of the water source, you gain no additional points from drinking from this source. Any state of dialogue prior to complete boredom will yield identical amounts of points.
A source will feel interesting once again to a player's herbivorous creature if they do not consume any water from the source for 30 minutes. At that point, the player can treat that water source as any other unexplored water source, reaping full point benefit once again.
Foliage and Map Items
There are some plants that grant points when consumed. There are also comfort crystals located deep in some caves and temples that grant points when consumed. These can be targeted and consumed by players interested in roaming around to these areas to deliberately increase their Survival Points. Some of these areas can be very dangerous to get into so caution is advised. Many players also like to deliberately eat these crystals or flowers, as some of them grant significant comfort bias as well as point value, and can be a highly coveted resource. Competition may turn even your own kind against you!