Stealth in Boundless

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Almost all RPGs (even singleplayer ones like TES or Fallout) allow you to play as a stealthy backstabbing character, so I´m pretty surprised that there havn´t been any suggestions or discussions regarding to it yet and want to start one of by making a suggestion myself.

First of all I think that , unlike in most games, sneaking should be available to every character (e.g. like in The Elder Scrolls Online) and not be restricted to certain skillsets or classes.
The next thing I want to mention is that I´m not a fan of the binary stealth model most games use where you are either 100% invisible or spotted. In my opinion it should be a gradual scaling of your transparency that is strongly influenced by your surroundings and therefore heavily engages the sandbox (which the devs seem to be very eager about).
Once you would enter the sneaking mode (simply toggled by a button like in ESO) you get a 50% base transparency and several conditions around you get checked do determine your effective transparency.
Some examples for potential conditions that could determine your sneaking “quality”:

  • Equipment,
    Ranging from +10% to -10% transparency, depending on how fitting your equipment is for sneaking.

  • Motion
    Ranging from +10% (standing still) to -20% (sprinting) transparency.

  • Light level,
    Ranging from +20% (at night or in dark caves) to -20% (during the day or next to light sources) transparency.

  • The environment

  • Standing on high grass, +10% transparency

  • Next to foliage blocks, +10% transparency

Please don´t quote me on the numbers. Those are just for the sake of giving an example.

Depending on your current transparency you should receive various bonuses like:

  • Reduced aggro range from aggressive creatures (scales with your transparency)
  • Damage multiplier for your initial attack (scales with your transparency)
  • Chance to slow your target with your initial attack if your transparency is above 75%.
  • Chance to stun and a granted slow on your target if your transparency is above 90%.
  • Chance to get a random item from the creatures loot table with your initial attack if your transparency is at 100%.

Again, just some ideas to give a few examples. I´m sure there are many better ideas for potential bonuses

This bonuses should, of course, not only apply to players but also to Stealth oriented creatures to make wandering around in a hunter invested forest even more intimidating.

Last a (poorly photoshopped) “Where´s Waldo” picture with two characters with 80% and 90% transparency and two hunters with 85% and 90% transparency hidden in it to give an idea of how the effect could look ingame.


i would be up for it if it likes the Elder Scrolls series, actually requires stamina to sneak so you cant just sneak forever :smile:

other than that i think it is a great suggestion :smile:

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I like your idea.

something i never understood … walking slowly is much easier than running :smiley: so i think sneaking should be possible without stamina … but that’s gameplay desicion.

@Vastar: waldo was too easy :smiley:

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I remember reading the response to the same question “but why does it take stamina to sneak if it doesn’t take so to move normally, it makes zero sense”, I cant find the response so i’m paraphrasing

“It makes total sense, you can try it yourself. try to get down to a crouch and move around without making a single sound always having full focus on where to move, and i can tell you that you would also be ■■■■■■■ exhausted after a while”


I agree with vastar on all points, I just want to add; no 100% invisibility ever. If I’m looking carefully enough, I should be able to spot a player in stealth.

Also, there should be a penalty greater than stealth’s attack bonus should you fail stealth and be attacked yourself. Example, I spot a would-be assassin and strike them first. They should be staggered and take bonus damage. That make stealth a risk-vs-reward attack.


I would prefer it as a rock/paper/scissor thing, People can increase their sneak skill and people can increase their detection skill. I think it is totally fair to have 100% invisibility if his sneak is high and your detection is low. But as far as i read the point was several things change how visible you are, for one i reckon distance would matter greatly, so they might be totally invisble 5 meters away but get more and more visible the closer they get (if we consider someone who have REALLY dedicated themself to stealth)

I would say make a seprate restriction on sneaking as being exhausted for fx. running is totally different to the strain you put on yourself for moving silently

ESO just makes it easy, sprinting/sneaking/power attack takes stamina, so you have to really think about everything you do. i dont think you should be able to sprint out and entire bar and then sneak out and entire bar and THEN powerattack and entire bar. seems overkill, but it depends on how they make it.

But as long as there is a restriction on how long you can do it im fine.

and if they have to split it up i think sneaking should reduce aggro range while sprinting should increase it, after all you make more noise and attract more attention.


See, my thing about that is stealthing in tall grass or shadows already makes you harder to see, naturally. Why artificially make it even harder to spot? It saves programing and processing to just ignore it, and makes stealth more skill based.


maybe we have a different definition of “sneaking”. i don’t implied crouching … i just tought about "moving slow and stay in cover / hide. if you implie also crouching i’m ok with a stamina lost for it.

i agree with this !!! it sould never be possible to be 100% invisible. otherwise some player become overpowered over others.

sounds like a fun thing for PvP … "lets ignore the stealthed guy untill he came close and hit him than :smiley: "

that sounds fair … expect the 100% thing

Quite simple actually. to REWARD those who dedicate themselves to stealth. if somebody spends a lot of focus on increasing his ability to stealth, be it through actual “levelling” a skill, or gear, or spells or whatever, he should REWARDED. The same way somebody dedicating themselves to archery should be able to shoot harder with bows than somebody who have never used it. At the same time to counteract that skill they could act “Detection”, ANOTHER skill you could level, and people who use time on that would be REWARDED by being able to see players/mobs easier. maybe even have some mobs be completely invisible if people refuse to level it.

Also, remember that PvP won’t be a major thing, it would be “fun” not sure if that still means we can stab eachother, but it seems like its not going to be “i walked around outside and i got backstabbed by an invisble guy, unfair” which seems to be what you are worried about.


PS: @Vastar while i like the idea of stealth i really dont think you should be able to sprint, i think sneak should make you harder to spot but would only last for a limited time and would punish you with quite a movement speed debuff, sneaking should only be one of few ways to approach a situation, if you make sneaking infinite and doesnt debuff, there is literally no reason not to sneak :smile:

Oh god please no, I hated that.
In ESO this was kinda necessary because every character was able to sneak and sneaking gave you 100% invisibility. With my suggestion you are (almost) never completely invisible so I really don´t see a need for an additional penalty like a stamina drain.
We also don´t know if we are going to get resources like stamina or how they´ll work and I didn´t want to make any assumptions on things we don´t know yet.

It should definetly be hard to achieve but i think under absolutely perfect conditions (at night with the right equipment, while standing still on tall grass) it should be possible to hit 100%. (but this is just a minor detail)

This would be a nice addition but I think a damage multiplier applied to yourself would not be the right penalty. Something like the slow you get when you are hit while your “aspect of the cheetah” (Hunter, WoW) is active would imo be more adequate.

Please not. Sneaking should be an intuitive little addition to the combat with a set of special wearables and maybe 1-2 skillable perks to it. It should definitely not be more complex than it has to be.

Dunno, in Fallout, the TES games, WoW (and most other MMOs) you can sneak for an indefinite amount of time without any penalty and yet there are a lot of players that don´t use it.

You cant just say

and then say “No pentalties on sneaking”

Also. It doesn’t MATTER how “invisible” you are. because you talk from a pvp combat perspective, which again Have been said wont happen So all it would be would be how much creatures can see you / you can see them.

Also, for the love of god don’t try to compare single player games to MMORPG’s without considering the balance. The main problem is in skyrim and fallout IT’S OP. you can oneshot enemies with sneak abilities. that REALLY shouldnt be the case.

Single player


Class locked.

Laughable. i will accept it if you can prove that over 50% of all mmorpgs uses perma sneak with no penalty.

You are arguing for every class being able to sneak yet not allow them to level or increase their sneaking other than focusing 100% on sneaking and nothing else by dedicating gear to it. What?


Stealth isn’t something we’ve ever planned for Boundless. I’m personally a big fan of stealth games and I wouldn’t want to put forwards anything that wasn’t going to be an amazing stealth experience – adding it into the already complex mix would simply be too compromised.

One day I’d love to work on a stealth game, love almost all of the titles referenced in this thread.

Edit: what stealth is/isn’t seems to be a bit of a blurry line for some people. AI behaviours and reacting to presence isn’t really what I’m talking about when I say “stealth”.


I think the idea for boundless “stealth” would be better described as “sneaking”. I think the opportunity for sandbox play with sneaking is too strong to ignore. Reduced mob detect range and direction when sneaking and a sneak animation would be all it really takes for a bare-bones sneak mechanic, and would add a whole level of complexity to play with, especially for dungeon designers and hunters. Please please consider adding at least bare-bones sneaking at some point.


Never say never, but there’s still quite a lot to do without adding lite-stealth mechanics. Also I’m not sure many/any of out planned combat mechanics are very ‘stealthy’. Combat will be cool!


Know what is a cool combat mechanic? Sneaking up behind something and stab! like a ninja!


Please don’t forget Drugging

Hopefully by borderlands combat you didnt mean the sort of “shoot 1 shot and you pull and entire camp” Not really sure if being able to pick down enemies from groups is “stealthy” but i hope its in the game

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