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Thoughts on RPGs (entirely too long to read)


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Hello, I've been a long time fan of RPGs (especially those by Black Isle, Troika, Bethesda, Obsidian and several others). Have I bought and played every last title? No, but even when a game wasn't to my particular taste I've always respected the work you do
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"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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It's a little scary how closely your post mirrors my sentiments, but a bit heart warming too. I think we're very similar; I'm almost positive that I wouldn't have been inspired towards writing if it wasn't for these cRPG pioneers and their amazing work. These guys have taught me so much about what it means to be a human being, and what it means to embrace one's imagination and dreams. I've learned more from them then I've learned from any institution. Sometimes I feel like these guys raised me more than my parents did, heh.

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I enjoyed your thoughts on the race and setting as I share similar opinions.

 

While visually and mechanically unique systems for magic is always a commendable goal, perhaps the reason pen-and-paper spells have always felt more robust to you is that they require only your imagination, and not the technical underlay to support it. :) Nonetheless, you have great ideas for implementing magic visually that I hope Obsidian takes notice of.

 

I wouldn't mind hearing more of your thoughts on storytelling as well.

 

Great post!

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I enjoyed your thoughts on the race and setting as I share similar opinions.

 

I'm glad you liked it.

 

While visually and mechanically unique systems for magic is always a commendable goal, perhaps the reason pen-and-paper spells have always felt more robust to you is that they require only your imagination,

 

Oh there is no doubt in my mind that you're right about that. :yes:

 

and not the technical underlay to support it. :) Nonetheless, you have great ideas for implementing magic visually that I hope Obsidian takes notice of.

 

I wouldn't mind hearing more of your thoughts on storytelling as well.

 

Great post!

 

I'm not sure they're ideas that are actually viable, in regard to the magic implementation on a visual level, it's more about coming up with new ideas than the ideas themselves being what I'd like to see.

 

In terms of story telling? I think I'd just end up producing another monsterous block of words. Sometimes though I think about story telling in games and wonder about emotions and the way in which things are said. You know how the same words said in reality can have drastically different results? I always wondered about how that could effect a game's story.

 

In terms of an actual story I always found mysteries more compelling than competitions, which, most 'go kill the dark lord and save the land' stories end up being. I find the competition with yourself (or your character's competition with themselves, their challenge of themselves to overcome their trials and tribulations) to be more interesting unless a given villain is just 'really' something special. And the evil dark lord is never special, now, a guy (or a girl) that's just opposed to you, whose ideals and motivations are arguably better than your own? Now that's interesting.

 

In the end what if the villain isn't a villain, what if he or she is actually right and you've been wrong all along? Oddly enough the first game that made me think this, even though it didn't go through with it, was Final Fantasy IV (which I played as II as a child). It started you out as the Dark Knight, you killed people, you did bad things and you were responsible for an entire village save one girl being wiped out (until the DS release changed it, and you went back to the town to find people still living . . . bleh). While it didn't go through with the theme I'm talking about, and it was entirely too black and white, it did start me thinking, "What if you were wrong the entire time, and didn't know it? What if it were well foreshadowed but never obvious that you were wrong?" Self discovery is a sort is an important factor in some stories, but at the same time . . . so is challenge, and not 'that boss was hard' challenge, but something that challenges the morals you've been set to believe in the context of the story.

 

It's especially interesting if you really did have a choice all along, and thought the choices you were making were right, up to that point.

 

Anyways, yeah, rambling again.

 

I think you bring some good points; certainly everyone here is a fan of good storytelling in games and no one wants to see a trite fantasy world full of clich

Edited by Umberlin
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"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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Heh. Just look at Morrowind almost Alien Fantasy visuals which are 'still' praised by critics and fans alike.

 

Exactly! Morrowind was a game that blew my standards away when I first played it. And that's just it -- Sometimes it feels like people are too afraid of even trying to defy standards. I agree; strangeness for the sake of strangeness is trite, sometimes reprocessing standard tropes and laying your own perspectives on them is enough, but why be timid and scare yourself into castrating your imagination? Morrowind simply wouldn't have been possible if Michael Kirkbride busied himself with normal fantasy staples. Sometimes the cow just jumps over the ****ing moon, you know?

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Morrowind was truly a fantasical setting. It's probably why Oblivion felt such a let down when compared to it.

 

I see what you mean, though, oddly, I don't think it was the environment that made me like Oblivion less. It did have some nice new features, No I think it was actually the level scaling that really killed it for me, to the extent that even turning the difficulty high up . . . well, there just wasn't much challenge. And that's because I separate the idea of challenge from the idea of tedium. To me just giving monsters more health, making them do more damage, that sort of stuff . . . it doesn't make a game more challenging for me. It just makes it feel more tedious. Maybe that's just me though.

 

I always felt like better AI or new AI routines, different tactics and abilities, different sorts of creatures with new tactics and group moments, enemies becoming more evasive where appropriate using hit and run tactics . . . and more . . . those sort sof things being added in and changed out at different difficulty levels is far more engaging. At least for me. I know I can't speak for everyone.

 

Morrowind's art direction was one of the best, probably the best, I've seen in any game.

 

I really can't agree more, it's not the only great one out there, but it had no lack of moments where I had to just stop and admire what they'd done visually.

 

Heh. Just look at Morrowind almost Alien Fantasy visuals which are 'still' praised by critics and fans alike.

 

Exactly! Morrowind was a game that blew my standards away when I first played it. And that's just it -- Sometimes it feels like people are too afraid of even trying to defy standards. I agree; strangeness for the sake of strangeness is trite, sometimes reprocessing standard tropes and laying your own perspectives on them is enough, but why be timid and scare yourself into castrating your imagination? Morrowind simply wouldn't have been possible if Michael Kirkbride busied himself with normal fantasy staples. Sometimes the cow just jumps over the ****ing moon, you know?

 

Over the moon, as in something amazing and unexpected, unusual, happens? I think I know what you mean. I definitely didn't mean different 'just to be different' I believe in 'different but fitting and contextual' if that makes sense.

"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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That's probably the only time and place when such posts aren't empty individualist ramblings but may be exactly fitting for the project.

 

Not entirely sure what you mean but thank you for the response, I'm glad you got something out of it. :yes:

"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

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