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Sylvius the Mad

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Posts posted by Sylvius the Mad


    As far as checking a walk through breaking immersion, are hints external and directed specifically at the player (not the characters) any different?

    Exactly right. I've asked in other games for the ability to disable the segmentation of the quest journal so I don't know which quests are main quests or side quests - because the PC shouldn't know those things either.


    I also hate cutscenes that show me things the PC doesn't know. NWN2 is the first game I recall doing this much.

  2. I think some people are looking at this from a rather... extreme point of view.


    To use a crude example, keys. This game will most likely (hopefully) have a special section for keys, a key chain or whatever. But it's simply annoying in some games where you would have used a key that is part of a quest and don't know whether you would have to use it again. Now I mean annoying in the sense that you have a little key that is taking up an entire slot of inventory space (which doesn't make sense in the first place).

    If we have a key ring, then there's no decision to be made about whether to keep the key. Maybe we'll find out later that we need to break into that same guy's house again, and if we didn't get caught the first time then we can use the same key. But if we threw it away, we have to find some other means of ingress.


    Imagine a plot where there's a locksmith who's been making a master key for all the locks he makes. If you find it, having it disappear would tell you when you'd found all of the locks - I'd rather not know that for sure.

    I would *love* for the world to be filled with mysterious items, like the Lady of Pain doll mentioned above for example. But what I don't want to wonder is if I should keep this mystical mcguffin of plot-advancing, because it may or may not be used in the plot again down the line if it doesn't have *another* purpose. If New Vegas had used a classic inventory, the Platinum Chip for exampe would be a prime example of this type of item.

    Look at the companion quest items in NWN. You could find those items before even meeting the relevant companions, and you could discard those items before ever meeting the relevant companion.


    When you find any item, it might be valuable. You don't know. You can make an educated guess based on item descriptions of the circumstances under which you found it or any number of things, and different characters will discard different items for different reasons - telling the player in advance what an item is for (or that it is for anything, or that it isn't) impacts those decisions in a potentially character-breaking way.


    I'm not necessarily opposed to it, but I think it would take a lot to do it right and for dubious value. I recall finding the BG system rather immersion-breaking since the lines often just didn't fit whoever was talking.

    I've always considered the dialogue options to be abstractions (like keywords in text parser dialogue systems), rather than an exact representation of what was said.

    In any case, I understand that the issue is about freedom to play a character in whatever way you want. That's all well and good, but I do think it a bit odd if your own personal avatar in the game--the one sure constant in the tale--is just some guy the others are dragging along.

    I don't perceive the player-created character as the player's avatar. Since the player controls the whole party, I suggest that the party, as a group, serves as the player's avatar. A sort of gestalt avatar.

    To have your party be a "democracy" of sorts and every character had an equal say would be interesting narratively, but a severe barrier to player agency.


    If the PC is making all the tactical, logistical and equipment decisions it stands to reason that they're the alpha of the group and final word rests with them.

    That would stand to reason, if it were the case that the PC was making all of the tactical, logistical, and equipment decisions.


    But he isn't. Not unless the player decides he is. The player makes these decisions for the party, and how the player imagines the party is actually making these decisions within the game world is entirely up to him. There is no requirement that the PC be the one carrying out the player's instructions. Inf act, in combat, we can see how this isn't the case. Since the player retains control of the whole party, even when the PC is incapacitated, demonstrates that the player doesn't control just the one player-created character.

  4. I think it would be awkward in practice for the PC not to speak for the party unless there's a compelling plot-related reason for some segment. After all, it is your party, as the de facto leader.

    I don't see why you would assume that to be the case. As mentioned above, both BG games allowed any party member to act as leader - they even got smug about it.


    The PC isn't necessarily the party leader. The player is necessarily leading the party (by controlling where they go and what they do), but from an in-character perspective those instructions need not be soming from the player-created character. Perhaps they're arrived at by consensus.


    There's simply no reason to assume the PC is the de facto leader unless you would prefer it that way.

    You're calling the shots, you decide where everyone goes, and you have final say on what gets done.

    Yes. Me. The player. Not necessarily the PC.

    • Like 1
  5. One of the things that always bothered me about RPGs and inventory management is that I never knew for certain whether or not something might be useful again.

    I couldn't disagree more. I really dislike the trend in modern games to tell me exactly what something is for and whether I'll need it. The Junk section on the inventory in DA2 was appalling.


    The inventory system should not give me metagame information about the things I find. I don't want to know if something I picked up is a quest item - I should have to figure that out myself. I don't want to know that something I just found is useless and I can safely sell it - I should have to figure that out myself.


    And I should be able to decide how to do that in character. Having the game tell me that something is no longer necessary eliminates a potential roleplaying opportunity. Having the game tell me that something will be important later eliminates a potential roleplaying opportunity.

    • Like 6
  6. Yes the PC as the Leader of the Party should be the spokeperson, but the companions should be able to interrupt , add things to a conversation, etc.

    Why should the PC necessarily be the party leader? This isn't something I get at all.


    If I design a PC who isn't well-suited to lead, why would he lead?

    not every one can talk at the same time, and usualy the PC is he boss and the boss speaks for the team.

    1. The boss doesn't necessarily speak for the team. The boss might not be the best spokesperson.


    2. The PC isn't necessarily the boss. Maybe there isn't a boss - perhaps the party is a group of equals. The player is in control, yes, but that is not equivalent to the PC being in control.

    • Like 1
  7. that last bit I think is key. Companions will have their own personality so they should have different conversation choices than the PC. Their conversation choices should make sense for their character. If I have some super goody-goody paladin, I shouldn't be able to make him threaten to kill innocent people for example.

    No matter who is party spokesperson, I would expect a goody-goody paladin to object to that kind of behaviour. Selecting the wrong response for that character could imply end the conversation as the companion objects to the direction in which the party is headed.

    There was another thread on this topic a while back but no official news since then.

    It's possible I started that one, too.

    The PC also seems always to have a gender non-specific surname or a title/rank that is the only name he/she is referred to the entire game!

    Since PE isn't fully voiced, this wouldn't be necessary, as the lines could contain variables. There's no reason why Obsidian can't write dialogue as "Greetings, %CHARNAME%."

  8. I've been trying to get some sort of answer on this since the project was announced.


    In a party-based game, I really like to be able to create different kinds of characters without them needing to fill specific roles within the party (because there are other characters available to fill those roles). This allows me more freedom in crafting my character's background and personality.


    However, if my character needs to act at party spokesperson, that means that I need to create a character who is capable of acting as party spokesperson. I'm not talking about stats - Tim's update made it clear that low Charisma or low Intelligence characters will be well-served by the written dialogue - but more about things like shyness and anxiety. If my character needs to act as party spokesperson, then I can't very well have him be afraid of people without breaking character whenever I initiate a conversation.


    It's not a game-breaking issue, but it is a game-changing issue, and I'm curious to know in what direction Obsidian is heading. Will this be like PST, where the player-created character is always the party's spokesperson? Will it be like Baldur's Gate, where any party member can lead the party and act as spokesperson? Will it be like SoZ, where the party initiates conversations as a group, but then employs a different spokesperson as it sees fit?

    • Like 1
  9. This is an important thread. I'm still traumatized by fighting some ridiculous buffed up level 15 wolves in Dragon Age Origins, otherwise a good game.

    Yeah, I remember that. Who'd have thought a bunch of wolves would provide such a ridiculously tough obstacle? :wacko:

    While I'll agree the scaling made that encounter more difficult at later levels than it should have been, animals in DAO had really low Will saves, so they were incredible vulnerable to things like Sleep spells. Casting Sleep at the start of that encounter rendered it trivial.


    And that's the sort of thing I would like to see, but without the scaling. Some encounters should be difficult for some types of parties while very easy for others, while with other encounters it will be the reverse.

  10. Sylvius: would you also enjoy the freedom to decide your character statistics freely? Would it bother you if the game got too hard or too easy as a consequence?

    I would enjoy that, and making the game harder or easier could potentially be the reason I did that.


    As long as the mechanics are well documented, any ensuing balance mistakes are the fault of the player.

    • Like 1
  11. There's a rather long list of game mechanics, ideas and even classes that lost their value in the IE games because save scumming was allowed.

    Only for those players who couldn't control themselves.

    The choice to not exploit bad design doesn't make it any better.

    I don't concede that it's bad design. Giving the players options is good design, full stop. It's up to the players to use those options they like and ignore those options they don't.


    It is never the designers' job to protect the player from himself.

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