Monte Carlo Posted March 10, 2005 Share Posted March 10, 2005 Consider these two quotes from this thread: This is from Jumjalum: HotU did not have the same party system as BG or PST. In the BG games you told each party member exactly what to do at each moment, in the NWN expansions the henchmen followed you around and cast what the AI deemed the appropriate spells. BG = party based since you have exactly the same level of control over the party members as you have over the main PC. NWN does not = party based since you dont directly control the party members other than some very basic commands and the ability to tell the AI what way you want it to fight. And this is from Volourn: You don't know what party based means then. A party, by defintion, is multiple adventurers traveling together. Even the OC has a party by defintion. Period. AI or player controlled is irrelevant to whether or not a game is party based. (the italics are mine, of course) --- I won't hijack that thread, but Volourn brought up a point there that piqued my interest. Although I agree with him technically, (more than one character of course constitutes a "party") in spirit I cannot. This is because of one simple point which I submit is pretty difficult to rebut: Current technological restrictions cannot possibly create totally satisfactory AI for joinable NPCs. OK, you can have that lame menu system a la NWN ("stay close/ use missile weapons/ use buffing spells" etc) but it really isn't the same, is it? A quick perusal of even the most drooling fanboy forums will find commonality between, say, Fallout fans and NWN fans: that AI-controlled NPCs are a pain in the butt. Especially in combat, which is a big part of CRPGs. OTOH, plenty of people find the utter and complete tactical control of, say, BG2 equally frustrating. Micromanaging the inventory, skills, spells (etc) of one 25th level character is pretty tough, but six? I should come clean here: personally I love to be able to have utter control of the aforementioned issues, but I was originally a wargamer and that's where I'm coming from. If I want, say, Minsc, to suicidally engage the enemy from a cetain direction whilst drinking 'X' potion whilst using 'Y' High Level Ability then I want to unambiguously enjoy that perogative. I don't want some lowest common denominator AI to make that decision for me, thankyou very much. I think that the compromise should come in at another level, which was oft-discussed during the development of Jefferson/ BG3; that of character allegiance/ development and loyalty. In BG2 there were certain crunch points where NPCs would leave your party based on decisions you made; that is fine by me as long as I also got to make the important decisions tactically. What do you all think? Do you reckon that existing implementation of NPC AI is going in the right direction? Is the apparent drift away from full-party control in modern CRPGs evidence of dumbing down or an elegant shift from tiresome micromanagement? Enquiring minds need to know. Cheers MC Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Create an account or sign in to comment
You need to be a member in order to leave a comment
Create an account
Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!Register a new account
Already have an account? Sign in here.Sign In Now