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The time sensitivity thing really can be bad though, just from a logic perspective. So this daughter of the elf king kidnapped by rapists has been waiting for you to appear at her fathers court to accept a quest that turns out is so urgent you just have to do it now or...well you know...but hey its a pity you just spent a week in a dungeon instead of going directly to the Elf Kings Hall from that other town you were in...right?

 

That's not really an issue if the "quest timer" only starts from the point in time you pick up the quest.

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See, but that's the thing about trying to impose realism in Fantasy. You're forced to draw arbitrary lines in the sand on what's acceptable suspension of belief and what isn't. The fact of the matter is that it's equally nonsensical for something like a Fire to occur only when the protagonist is present, as it is for someone inside a burning building to survive for as long as it takes for the protagonist to rescue them.

 

Frankly if they ever manage to design a game that will manage to have events occuring in a logical manner without you ever needing to have hand in them I will come buckets and order thirty copies. As it is until we invent Skynet/Shodan such thing is pretty much impossible and some acceptable breaks from reality are necessary (a slight aside - it's fantasy is not a valid defense againt using real world logic on the setting). So the kidnapping of the elven maiden/sudden fire has to wait for the player to arrive - why we should suffer further breaks from reality by letting the fires blaze for three weeks (while a cult springs around the obviously immortal holy burning child) or having the would be rapists suddenly find religion and wait for the holy just retribution at the hand of our hero is beyond me. Our current technology lets us do this and I do not see why we should settle for less just because some people enjoy their romantic sunsets and slow trips by the riverside.

 

And my opinion is that the *Story* should reflect it. A well written story should sufficiently instill that sense of urgency. If actual gameplay mechanics have to be imposed on the player because the story itself wasn't powerful enough to get the player to act right away, then the devs have already failed.

Story is nice and all but it should NEVER be the main and total focus of an RPG. Robust mechanics should. The only thing the devs can be at fault here is when they are unable to offer enough mechanics to reflect your choices and settle for lazy all quests wait for you forever design.

Say no to popamole!

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The time sensitivity thing really can be bad though, just from a logic perspective. So this daughter of the elf king kidnapped by rapists has been waiting for you to appear at her fathers court to accept a quest that turns out is so urgent you just have to do it now or...well you know...but hey its a pity you just spent a week in a dungeon instead of going directly to the Elf Kings Hall from that other town you were in...right?

 

That's not really an issue if the "quest timer" only starts from the point in time you pick up the quest.

Which makes no sense. Somehow the gods have decreed that nothing is urgent until hero X hits the 'accept quest' button.

Edited by Stun
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The time sensitivity thing really can be bad though, just from a logic perspective. So this daughter of the elf king kidnapped by rapists has been waiting for you to appear at her fathers court to accept a quest that turns out is so urgent you just have to do it now or...well you know...but hey its a pity you just spent a week in a dungeon instead of going directly to the Elf Kings Hall from that other town you were in...right?

 

 

That's not really an issue if the "quest timer" only starts from the point in time you pick up the quest.

Which makes no sense. Somehow the gods have decreed that nothing is urgent until hero X hits the 'accept quest' button.

I believe I can finally see our problem here - you see one illogical thing/ a product of current tech limitations and take from it that no more logic need apply anymore. I see it and grudgingly accept it as a necessary evil while wishing that rest of the design need not be so stupid. I don't think we will ever find a common ground.

Edited by evdk
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Say no to popamole!

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Frankly if they ever manage to design a game that will manage to have events occuring in a logical manner without you ever needing to have hand in them I will come buckets and order thirty copies. As it is until we invent Skynet/Shodan such thing is pretty much impossible and some acceptable breaks from reality are necessary (a slight aside - it's fantasy is not a valid defense againt using real world logic on the setting). So the kidnapping of the elven maiden/sudden fire has to wait for the player to arrive - why we should suffer further breaks from reality by letting the fires blaze for three weeks (while a cult springs around the obviously immortal holy burning child) or having the would be rapists suddenly find religion and wait for the holy just retribution at the hand of our hero is beyond me. Our current technology lets us do this and I do not see why we should settle for less just because some people enjoy their romantic sunsets and slow trips by the riverside.

Then it seems that we're at an impasse due to the fact that you've drawn your line here, and I've drawn mine over there.

 

How about some closing arguments. I'm totally alright with more logic and urgency in fantasy, right up until that logic and urgency infringes on my fun. If I have to rescue that child from the buring building before being allowed to go browse a merchant's wares, or before going to talk to that interesting looking quest giver I see down the street who just caught my eye, then the game is forceably trying to corral me. I dislike this.

 

And my opinion is that the *Story* should reflect it. A well written story should sufficiently instill that sense of urgency. If actual gameplay mechanics have to be imposed on the player because the story itself wasn't powerful enough to get the player to act right away, then the devs have already failed.

Story is nice and all but it should NEVER be the main and total focus of an RPG.

Correct. it should simply be the main and total focus of an RPG's quest lines. Which is what we're discussing here.

Edited by Stun
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Yeah i'm in favour of content being witheld for certain actions, that way we can take those alternate routes the next game replay, something like the Roche/Iorveth routes in the Witcher 2. Where the game reacts to our choices and shuts off certain avenues because of them, aids not just replay value but a sense of non linearity as well as choice and consequence. There of course should be enough downtime periods between these pivotal moments of course, creating good pacing.

 

It would also be interesting if say for instance we were faced with a binary choice of quest, the antagonist chose to move on the goal we choose not to pursue. Thus we get a pro active enemy, who benefits from whatever resources we chose not to and is suitably strengthened thereby.

Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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The time sensitivity thing really can be bad though, just from a logic perspective. So this daughter of the elf king kidnapped by rapists has been waiting for you to appear at her fathers court to accept a quest that turns out is so urgent you just have to do it now or...well you know...but hey its a pity you just spent a week in a dungeon instead of going directly to the Elf Kings Hall from that other town you were in...right?

 

That's not really an issue if the "quest timer" only starts from the point in time you pick up the quest.

Which makes no sense. Somehow the gods have decreed that nothing is urgent until hero X hits the 'accept quest' button.

 

I figured someone would try this argument.

 

"Picking up" the quest could be done in many ways, and some might be as simple hearing a town crier exclaiming that a nearby farm is burning. Journal has been updated. No need for dialogue, no need to "accept" the quest. You know of the event - decision time. Do you go, or do you not go?

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How about some closing arguments. I'm totally alright with more logic and urgency in fantasy, right up until that logic and urgency infringes on my fun. If I have to rescue that child from the buring building before being allowed to go browse a merchant's wares, or before going to talk to that interesting looking quest giver I see down the street who just caught my eye, then the game is forceably trying to corral me. I dislike this.

 

You're not going to be forced though. That the quest is time sensitive does not disable you from talking to that quest giver or browsing the merchant's wares. You make the decision to do so, and risk the farm burning down as a result. How hard is it to understand that?

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Then it seems that we're at an impasse due to the fact that you've drawn your line here, and I've drawn mine over there.

 

How about some closing arguments. I'm totally alright with more logic and urgency in fantasy, right up until that logic and urgency infringes on my fun. If I have to rescue that child from the buring building before being allowed to go browse a merchant's wares, or before going to talk to that interesting looking quest giver I see down the street who just caught my eye, then the game is forceably trying to corral me. I dislike this.

On the other hand if the game makes all sorts of proclamations about the imminence of a threat and then lets me spend three months picking up herbs to bake into cakes while the Army of Evil waits on the border for me to trigger of the invasion by completing quest no.13 I believe it's terribly designed and would take it as a huge disadvantage. Could even be a show stopper, really. I hope Obsidian does better.

Edited by evdk

Say no to popamole!

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You're not going to be forced though. That the quest is time sensitive does not disable you from talking to that quest giver or browsing the merchant's wares. You make the decision to do so, and risk the farm burning down as a result. How hard is it to understand that?

 

Ugh. Just... No. Quest timers have their own issues. They're lazy, immersion breaking, action-based mechanics that go counter to fundamental role playing basics. If we have to have urgency (see farm burning scenario), then lets use something more creative to project that urgency please. kthnksbye.

 

On the other hand if the game makes all sorts of proclamations about the imminence of a threat and then lets me spend three months picking up herbs to bake into cakes while the Army of Evil waits on the border for me to trigger of the invasion by completing quest no.13 I believe it's terribly designed and would take it as a huge disadvantage. Could even be a show stopper, really. I hope Obsidian does better.

What kind of argument is that? Do you feel that you will be unable to resist picking flowers in the face of an immenent threat unless the game forces you to?

 

No? The by all means, when you're in that scenario, do what you want. But stop trying to shove your self-imposed limitations on the rest of us.

Edited by Stun
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I prefer a countdown timer to appear when a timed quest is accepted. This is reasonable, considering that the alternative is for the player to wander off since most games do not impose time limits - technical limits and player behaviors should be taken into account when designing quests, and the timer is one such mechanism that may be useful.

 

By the way, some of you may be interested in the Devil Survivor series, as it uses a clock for each day in which you could talk to your companions, conduct battles, and see events. Time management is fairly important there, so that might be relevant.

Edited by Sabin Stargem
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You're not going to be forced though. That the quest is time sensitive does not disable you from talking to that quest giver or browsing the merchant's wares. You make the decision to do so, and risk the farm burning down as a result. How hard is it to understand that?

 

Ugh. Just... No. Quest timers have their own issues. They're lazy, immersion breaking, action-based mechanics that go counter to fundamental role playing basics. If we have to have urgency (see farm burning scenario), then lets use something more creative to project that urgency please. kthnksbye.

If you are talking about real, on screen present quest timers then yes, those are ****. If not then YOU are the immersion breaking action based popamoler, kthnksbye.

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Say no to popamole!

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Ugh. Just... No. Quest timers have their own issues. They're immersion breaking, action-based inventions that go counter to basic role playing mechanics. If we have to have urgency (see farm burning scenario), then lets use something more creative to project that urgency please. kthnksbye.

 

How, exactly, do they break immersion? The world not waiting 1 year for the hero to get around to it only makes sense within the scope of the world itself.

 

"kthnksbye"

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What the hell is that word you all keep using?

Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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Ugh. Just... No. Quest timers have their own issues. They're immersion breaking, action-based inventions that go counter to basic role playing mechanics. If we have to have urgency (see farm burning scenario), then lets use something more creative to project that urgency please. kthnksbye.

 

How, exactly, do they break immersion?

How do they not? You're focussed on a friggin clock, instead of the game world. I can think of nothing more retardedly arcade like

Edited by Stun
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Oh been wondering about that for awhile, cheers.

Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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I am in favor of quest timers. However, I am not in favor of a over-all quest timer for the main quest. Quests should be failable because the player spent too long messing around somewhere else instead of rescuing those farmers from the trolls (they got hungry). It does give a sense of urgency to the game while not making people overly stress about how they are going to get everything done before the end of the world.

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Ugh. Just... No. Quest timers have their own issues. They're immersion breaking, action-based inventions that go counter to basic role playing mechanics. If we have to have urgency (see farm burning scenario), then lets use something more creative to project that urgency please. kthnksbye.

 

How, exactly, do they break immersion?

You're focussed on a friggin clock, instead of the game world.

 

Only if you're the type of player who feels the need to be able to do everything in one play through without any sort problem. I like to take my time and explore the game world too, but I find it breaks immersion when I can just take a year off of my supposedly important quest chain simply because "I don't feel like doing it right now".

 

Choices are supposed to matter. You can choose to ignore the clock, you know.

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Ugh. Just... No. Quest timers have their own issues. They're immersion breaking, action-based inventions that go counter to basic role playing mechanics. If we have to have urgency (see farm burning scenario), then lets use something more creative to project that urgency please. kthnksbye.

 

How, exactly, do they break immersion?

How do they not? You're focussed on a friggin clock, instead of the game world. I can think of nothing more retardedly arcade like

 

Then don't show the clock. Have the game world and NPC's imply that if you don't act quickly, the quest will be failed. It would completely ruin the immersion of the situation if I'm standing next to a burning farm with a woman begging me to go save her son and then I could then go browse the weapon shop only to come back and find the building and/or NPC's in the exact same conditions they were in before I left. The world should feel alive, not like its waiting around for me. There doesn't need to be any sort of clock. The game could be programmed so that as long as I am at the burning farm, all is well. I can check every drawer of that farm for treasure if I want. But if I pop back into town to hit up the pub, I would return to find the farm burned down. No timers needed.

Edited by ogrezilla
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How, exactly, do they break immersion?

You're focussed on a friggin clock, instead of the game world.

 

Only if you're the type of player who feels the need to be able to do everything in one play through without any sort problem.

Or... if you're the type of player who dislikes excessive action-based mechanics in a non action based game.

 

And there's a long list of "problems" that "my type" gleefully welcomes in an RPG. Quests avaliable only to certain builds, is one example. Quests that require serious thinking to solve is another.

 

I like to take my time and explore the game world too, but I find it breaks immersion when I can just take a year off of my supposedly important quest chain simply because "I don't feel like doing it right now".

Then. don't. take. a. year. off. Give the quest the immediate attention you feel it deserves. But what you're arguing here is for such quests to *require* everyone to play as you would - and for success and failure to be dependent on a timer that goes tick -tick- tick, and can even run out while you're in the middle of actually *doing* that quest. Silly. Again, this goes counter to fundamental RPG basics.

Edited by Stun
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I mean sometimes i get bored of the fact that the entire world revolves around me the PC, i mean its awfully nice of that evil general to not attack the pathetically underprotected town until i finish all the sidequest there that inable me to turn it into a ramshackle fort with a fighting chance, but sometimes i dont want be enemys to be gentlemen, sometimes i just want them to inhuman ass holes like Luca Blight.

 

I mean in the above example i might only have enough time to get one or two of the following:

 

1-hire that mercenary band in the roadside tavern to the west of the town before they leave.

 

2-go to the lumber mill to the east to get some wood to build some fortification (blocking additional routes to funel the enemys and fortifing that bell tower so that those hunters can have something to hide behind).

 

3-convince the blacksmith to stick aroung to make better gear for the militia.

 

Wouldnt it be cool if you find out that the smugglers cave you cleared out 3 hours ago can be used as a shortcut to the inn, and thus ends up saving enough time to do another town fortificaton side quest?

 

Again i would like to see this as an option that we can choose to enable when we want to be challenged and be put under pressure, and that can be disabled by people who just want to take there time and explore the world.

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There doesn't need to be any sort of clock.

 

 

The game could be programmed so that as long as I am at the burning farm, all is well.

 

No timers needed.

In other words, coming up with a more creative way to project urgency - one that doesn't involve quest timers.

 

Yeah, I've been arguing for this since... Idk, page 4?

Edited by Stun
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How, exactly, do they break immersion?

You're focussed on a friggin clock, instead of the game world.

 

Only if you're the type of player who feels the need to be able to do everything in one play through without any sort problem.

Or... if you're the type of player who dislikes excessive action-based mechanics in a non action based game.

 

And there's a long list of "problems" that "my type" gleefully welcomes in an RPG. Quests avaliable only to certain builds, is one example. Quests that require serious thinking to solve is another.

 

I like to take my time and explore the game world too, but I find it breaks immersion when I can just take a year off of my supposedly important quest chain simply because "I don't feel like doing it right now".

Then. don't. take. a. year. off. Give the quest the immediate attention you feel it deserves. But what you're arguing here is for such quests to *require* everyone to play as you would - and for success and failure to be dependent on a timer that goes tick -tick- tick. Silly. Again, this goes counter to fundamental RPG basics.

 

No, it doesn't go counter to fundamental RPG basics at all. The world is is supposed to be a real thing that the player exists in. Existing within a world means that things happen with or without you there to deal with them. If you wait too long to go to the mall in real life, the mall will be closed. If fire fighters wait too long to get to a fire, that house has burned down and people have probably died. There's no reason this concept shouldn't be added to a roleplaying game because you are meant to be playing a character that exists within that world. Your arguments of "I don't like quest timers" falls flat, because it's not even an argument.

 

I gleefully accept quests that are only available to certain builds or require serious thinking too, but I've constantly been saddened by RPGs for lacking a true concept of the passage of time. PE: Can break this trend. Success would be based on the players actions, only failure and the consequences would be based on the timer which is how it should be anyway.

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I liked the way Imoen was handled fairly well, story-wise; I need to get together enough money to reach her, but because of the amount, I have lots of choice in how I do it. Likewise, giving me options for RPing in that I have, say, someone telling me that going off to fight the evil wizard is a really bad idea before I'm more competent, but who won't actually stop me doing so, is good. Fallout 3... not so good. The sense of main plot urgency was always so present that taking any time off to explore or do sidequests felt completely out of character, and not taking the time led to me missing most of the game.

 

New Vegas, I'd have liked more going on in the background while I made my choices on what to do. Not all of it, but maybe that camp full of Legion slaves is actually heading somewhere specific, with stops at night to rest, and if I don't get them on the way, I have to level up for awhile to break them out of somewhere much more populated if I want to. It's probably a lot more writing, but maybe one of those slaves is a potential companion, and whether I pick them up right away or leave them enslaved for a month or so is going to really impact on their personality and fighting style/abilities.

 

Going back to the first example, with Imoen, I'd like it if, say, there were a number of choices for large sidequests to take on before going off to Spellhold, but only time for so many, and the ones you leave, you have to resolve quite differently when you come back. Consequences, replayability, some urgency because the clearly telegraphed main quest is only going to leave you so much time, but nothing major that's actually lost so you end up feeling you can't ever relax and enjoy things. For more minor sidequests, go ahead and put actual timers on them, be a nice change to existing in some hero-centred limbo.

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