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  1. The first printing press, courtesy of Johan Gutenburg, appeared in 1450. This invention is right up there with penicillin, the Internet, the machine gun and all sorts of other, radical world-changing technologies and discoveries. The printed word allowed ideas to percolate up and down the social strata of societies in a way we might struggle to understand, or take for granted, right now. In fact, the written word was a vehicle of the Reformation, and later Fascism and Communism. Like the Internet, it was a force for both positive and the negative. It accelerated education. It was instrumental in the emancipation of the oppressed. In short: it was a Big Deal. Now in Project Eternity we have a world where, for some reason, technology has developed unevenly. Imagine how much more dangerous that world might be --- where guns and mighty galleons, a world where Gods can inspire the development of bombs, coexist with dark aged superstition and dogma? So this thread is about that. Start with a counter-factual if you wish, or perhaps how this fits in with the lore of the world. And I know that printing presses aren't as sexy as swords, spells and loot but in the context of the setting I think it's an interesting topic.
  2. Alright, this is more of a specualtion thread. So, we know that choosing your race will strongly determine your position in the world. Prejudices against races will be different in different lands, somewhere humans rule, somewhere they are hated. Also there have been hints that your class might have a minor influence, as to mages might be hated by some groups etc. And that pushes us to the question of gender. As of late most developers, who implement gender choice in their game, tend to make the game indifferent to this choice, making it little more than a cosmetic one. Sure, your romance options may change, your visuals may change, and if conversations are voiced - your voice will change. But usually that is the limit to what is one of the most definitive characteristic of a person. Indeed, in a fantasy setting, which is based on medieval times(even if a bit too loosely) wouldn't it be quite logical for many occupations and even activities to be strictly divided into masculine and feminine. Maybe it's just me, but wouldn't that be more engaging? Imagine a female character. Let's say she's a warrior class, swinging sword is what she does for a living. And maybe she's quite good at it, but why would anyone newly met take her prowess and experience as granted? I can't imagine male soldiers, noblemen and such acknowledging her easily. At least at first. At least until they get to know the character better. And even then you can't expect everyone to like her. She wouldn't be trusted to go on the most important assignments, and know the most important aspects of the state of things. Maybe she wouldn't be permitted to enter a tournament or something. I even bet some self-important bastard would even take on a grudge on a woman taking up a sword. That could lead to a conflict, either open, or concealed where she is ambused in her sleep etc. And now we move on. We've seen our first city, felt first grudges, fought our first foes. Now we march into more rural placees. And what do we find there? A cenobite monastery! A tied female character is gratiously taken in, offered food, water and roof to sleep under. Maybe the Grand Cenobite has a long issue needed to be resolved and she personally trusts the female character with that issue. Maybe it's not just a monastery, but a part of a grand order and the female main charachter might even have a chance at joining the order's holy warriors caste. And here a male main character comes along to the monestery. He is met with deep disdain and distrust. All communication is done through a proxy - a eunuch monk. The most this male character could count on is to be offfered a sleep in the pig stalls, along with pigs. And food? Well, sure! If you can take it away from the pigs. Oh, of course the Grand Cenobite has something so ask him of as she sends her eunuch proxy with a message - chase away the wolves who love snaching away monastery's pigs. And then be on your way - we have no more use of you. On the other hand, as the male charachter enters an aforementioned city, where a woman was met with great prejudice - soldiers meet him as an equal, noblemen respect him. And that one bastard who tried to assasinate the woman may even be as nice as to help the male character rise faster in the society, put in a good word for the male charater to be enrolled into high tournament and probably made an officer. Now imagine gender prejudice mixed with racial one. Imagine our heroes venturing into some sort of elven(or something) society, which might be deeply matriarchal. And even though both our heroes might be insufferably human, the female would be tolerated even if considered of lesser species, whereas the male would be treated outrightly as little more than a slave. Again this is a speculation thread, since gender differences this great in story are probably too much to be implemented. Yet still, isn't it fun to think about it? Itsn't it engaging to contemplate such possibilities?
  3. Many modern games these days like to gloss over the villain as a mere obstacle to the player’s hero. It’s understandable since the hero is the one in which the player spends most of his / her time with. In recent years I cannot recall any wonderful video game villains at all and most seem to be either mindless world eating threat or a misunderstood grey character in which the character was suppose to pity or redeem. After finishing a modern RPG I would remember some of the companions and some of the more interesting quests but I cannot remember the villain at all. Who was the villain in Oblivion? I think it was a demon thing, but it had a wonderful Dark Brotherhood quest! Who was the villain in Skyrim? I think it was a dragon, but forget about him I can dragon shout people off cliffs! Who was the villain in Dragon Age: Origins? I think it was again a dragon…or was that the villain in World of Warcraft: Cataclysm? Anyways, I can’t think of any real memorable villains in modern times so let’s talk about some villains I do remember and they are Irenicus from Baldur’s Gate 2, Kefka from Final Fantasy 6 and the Joker from The Dark Knight. Spoilers Alert if you haven’t play through Baldur’s Gate 2, Final Fantasy 6 or watched The Dark Knight Irenicus Irenicus does not mess around. He always had a plan and he tortures you in a self-righteous tone asking “You have such…potential.” Even after you escaped the initial dungeon and he is long gone he haunts your dreams with such command. He controls the PC. I can still remember the chilling word, “Stand” or in another dream when he goes on about a story of a woman who works hard to raise her children and then mercilessly kills her “And now she is dead.” Doing all this just to make a point to the PC about the nature of life and how it’s a world of survival of the fittest. I remember an exchange between Imoen and him after he had broken free from Spellhold. “Hello, little one. You and I have a great deal to do.” “Wh-what are you planning?” “Not to worry, nothing worse than what I shall do to your friend.” I remember hating Irenicus but along with that hatred came with certain respect. He was winning and I was always a step behind. I respected his plans, and I respected how he can lay waste to a bunch of mages in seconds. If the boss fight against Irenicus weren’t hard then perhaps that respect would have faded but the fight was hard and you needed to break down his magical defenses to even start damaging him and when he finally dies at the Elf home city, he drags you into hell with him. At the end it was so satisfying finally beating him and watch him rot in hell. He wasn’t going to hurt anyone else anymore and I put a formidable foe away. Kefka This crazy clown is one of the few villains who actually won. Many villains go out there and try to destroy the world. Kefka actually does it mid-way through Final Fantasy VI. Before he destroys the world, he had poisoned an entire town, enslaved Terra, killed General Leo and kicked around his corpse, killed all the Espers and finally betrayed his emperor to become a godlike being. After he already won and reshaped the world in his own image he likes to fire down laser beams on any survivors for a laugh. There was no redeeming quality to him and I loved that in a villain. It was so satisfying to finally put him down after all he did to everyone in Final Fantasy VI. The Joker The Joker from the Dark Knight was great. Even though he was on film and in a different medium he had both the traits of both Kefka and Irenicus. The Joker made plans, a lot of them and he lies how he’s only a mad dog chasing cars which isn’t true at all but with his appearance and chaotic nature it was easy to believe him. The Joker was genuinely funny, who didn’t laugh at least a little after seeing the pencil trick or seeing the irony of ‘let her go’ and his rebuttal of ‘Very poor choice of words.’ The Joker was both endearing in his humor but he was so incredibly intelligent. The Joker won so many times over Batman and only in the very end at great cost to himself was he able to finally put the Joker away. It was a pyrrhic victory, but that’s what made the Joker so memorable. He was a worthwhile foe that both humor and terrified the audience. The traits these three villains shared are that they’re all very intelligent and had plans to get what they want. There are so many times when a villain would allow the hero a chance to escape. Not these villains, they plan for keeps and will get what they want and the hero and his companions must suffer from it. A good villain should be a viable threat that the hero must witness first hand. In Dragon Age: Origins they would build up the threat in the map and you cannot revisit a village because it was destroyed but it would have been so much better to revisit that village and see the destruction firsthand. The hero should see a companion be irreversibly changed by a villain’s evil act. Imoen changed after her encounter with Irenicus and depending on how you played; Celes was going to commit suicide. Villains should also make things personal. I know there’s the old RPG cliché of having a villain burning down your village and you have to go on a quest of vengeance. It’s cliché now but what it did do was to make things personal for a character and provides motivation to pursuit that villain. Above all, a villain should not be a dragon. Dragons make wonderful boss fights and should be included, but for the main antagonist, a dragon is simply too foreign to relate unless he can morph into human being so that’s different. But still just don’t do it. Don’t make another dragon the main villain in an RPG!
  4. I've been thinking during construction of the game the project could also create a series of short stories to: help to introduce us (and future buyers) to the world; help shape our understanding of the world, its lore, the main characters and events; and keep us all interested as the project unfolds. What do you think? If you think it would be a good idea what sort of stories would you like to see?
  5. I LOVE what I am seeing in the updates. This all sounds fantastic, and I really hope we get the role-playing freedom promised here. What I would love to see is a storyline that really coerces the character to participate. New Vegas had a great (though pretty harsh) opening hook. Arcanum opened well, too; bad guys were after you from the start. Fallout of course was very motivating, although the hard time limit has been hotly debated ever since (I don't think it's necessary). This is a great chance for a CRPG to have a story written from the ground up that can include a temperamentally non-heroic, non-adventuresome protagonist. Obviously I don't know what the real plot is, but let's just say the hero is haunted by a ghost for no apparent reason. The ghost appears periodically, wrecking stuff, perhaps hurting people. The "hero" tries running away, but the ghost just keeps showing up, and consequences maybe keep getting worse. People get killed. Companions are lost. The hero starts taking permanent damage or something. Eventually it will get to the point where even the world's biggest coward will have to start looking for clues to deal with the haunting and face the problem head-on. Of course a braver character might just start off going straight for the evil wizard. I just want to make sure that the story will draw in even a more, well, realistic guy, who doesn't necessarily have the cojones to solve every problem by challenging five guys to a battle to the death right off the bat. Now I know there are some "open world" advocates out there who never want to be rushed. They want to take their time, exploring every outhouse and chicken coop in the game, wandering from place to place without a care in the world. They don't want any consequences to ignoring a bad situation. I can totally appreciate that kind of gameplay ... but in this case I say thee nay! I don't have to be forced down the rails through the entire course of the game - in fact it's great if sometimes I have no idea what I'm supposed to do next - but the story should always be looming, and always making me want to resolve it. Open world, do-whatever-you-want-whenever-you-want games can be great, but not every RPG has to be built on that foundation. In fact many good RPGs would be ruined without the sense of urgency that strong plotting provides.
  6. I understand it's hard to put a protagonist in peril but something that super bothered me about BG and IwD (probably the only thing that bothered me) was the amount of time my 18 int mage character walked into a trap that I, as the player, spotted from a mile away. I'm not talking about a physical trap, but the moment the enemy jumps out from behind a sofa and goes 'BWAHAHAHA you did exactly what I wanted you to! Ambush!' and I let out an audible sigh as I the story forced me into that situation. I know it's picky but it does get frustrating
  7. Since episodes 200 and 201 were unjustly censored by comedy central that they should create an uncensored image of Muhammad in "The Stick of Truth". South park is notorious for making fun of every single religious figure. But this is the one figure they haven't been able to show since 2006. Because some butt hurt muslims threatened comedy central. They should shove this in the worlds faces and show us that our free speech is not bordered by threats. To show everyone that you can make fun of everything, because as our given rights of freedom to live. They should have the freedom to show whatever they ****ing want on there own game and tv show. **** comedy central and there censorship, and **** the people that are offended. Matt and Trey have seriously showed us what free speech means, but its time to take it to the next level and show the world that everything is okay to be made fun of, and to show it uncensored. Comedy is an art form and you don't ****ing censor art. So why censor a comedy cartoon show. Let alone a game that is coming out. This is art and being art it deserves better than a ****ing black box that said's "CENSORED". It deserves better than a long ass line of ****ing bleeps like was shown on Episode "201". Create a game that tells everyone to **** off!!!
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