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For people who are NOT apathetic or opposed to romances in games:  

455 members have voted

  1. 1. Are you willing to sacrifice romances as a feature if it drew significant resources from other story features?

  2. 2. Are you willing to sacrifice romances as a feature if it drew significant resources from gameplay design?

  3. 3. Would you still want romance options in the game even if your hypothetical favorite NPC did not end up being available?



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This is about advocacy, and about making sure that the squeakiest wheel doesn't get the most oil. Romances have become popular but are like poison ivy - an alien interloper that can quickly overwhelm the host organism.

Once again, please explain how you enjoyed any Obsidian games besides Dungeon Siege 3 and Storm of Zehir.
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You bought a bad game because of the work of one person. Not me.

 

Well, a lot of people also told me that Planescape: Torment was the greatest RPG ever. What was I to know?

 

Wait, what game are we talking about?

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Romance is a nice addition, but not a vital element for a CRPG.

Edited by TrashMan

* YOU ARE A WRONGULARITY FROM WHICH NO RIGHT CAN ESCAPE! *

Chuck Norris was wrong once - He thought HE made a mistake!

 

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I see LoF has turned up but happily I have him on ignore.

I see you're an infant baby who can't argue so he has to use ignore and never engage with anyone, repeating the same points over and over again as though they become more true the more times you repeat them.
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From what I've seen, it seems like some of the most adamant opposition to romances comes from irrational fear. Fear that announcing "we'll write some romantic interactions, among the rest of ways you can interact with the characters" might attract some of the most obsessive people of the Bioware fanbase, bringing their habits and expectations into the project. Fear that this addition will lead the Obsidian fanbase to become similar to the BioWare fanbase in the short or long term, with people asking for the sun and the moon in terms of romances and lobbying in the forums to get support for their requests, with many of them priorizing that feature (and they treat it as a separate feature, not as a part of character interactions) over anything else. Fear that this will lead Obsidian to adopt a similar approach to romances in PE as BioWare has done lately, whether it's voluntarily, because of convenience or because their hand is forced (such as significant backlash if expectations of a loud group of people are not met, the main reason why if BioWare decided to stop with the romances its fanbase would riot). Essentially, fear that the inclusion of romances will lead Obsidian to become "like BioWare".

 

This is a slippery slope argument. Such addition does not, in theory, necessarily lead to the things they fear. Still, I would like to understand why the BioWare fanbase became that way, just to have it stated somewhere. Maybe this will show if the same could happen to the Obsidian fanbase. Or at least, it might lead to understand why the anti-romancers oppose romances so heavily.

 

 

Let's view this from a different perspective: instead of what romances can do for a game, let's see what they can do to the players.

 

 

Let's assume that we have a game where player romances are "done well". What does this mean? Well, there are all sort of ideas and opinions on how they should be handled, so let's boil it down to what romances are, to what people are looking for when they say they want romances. From what I've gathered (if I'm wrong about this, let me know), what the proromancers mean with this is that they want a believable romantic relationship shown between the PC and the companion, they want the emotions and the love to be woven organically into all interactions between the PC and the companion, and they want it all to feel genuinely heartfelt. Let's not discuss if this is actually possible or not, let's just assume it is for the sake of this argument, okay?

 

Let's also assume that the game is very immersive, that there is a strong connection between the player and the PC because the player feels as if they're in the PC's place (this plays a big part in suspending disbelief to enjoy the story, so it's important). If you put these two things together, the end result is that, unless you're distancing yourself from the PC, some of these warm and fuzzy feelings are going to be transferred to the player (thanks to the immersion). Since many people from the proromance crowd defend romances as being a very immersive experience (and they use that exact word), it seems like people honestly want to experience those feelings when playing. In theory, this is fine; different people enjoy different things from their games.

 

In practice, player romances are inherently one-sided. Character interactions are not infinite, they are limited to what is written on the game. This means that the player is going to get warm and fuzzy feelings from the romantic interactions until there are no more. And let's be clear on something here: romantic love is addictive. Science says so. So, when the feelies stop coming, people react in different ways, just like with other addictive behaviours. Most people move on, others... not so much.

 

And here is where the problems come. Some people don't have much self-control on this subject, and when you have a bunch of people like that on the same forum, they're going to enter a feedback loop sooner or later. Thus, the problem can be exacerbated. In fact, if you look at the BioWare forums, you could say that some people do show behaviors that are similar to symptoms of addiction:

- Difficulty cutting down or controlling the addictive behavior: Many people there confess that they can't stop themselves from romancing a character. Someone here in the romance threads has also admitted to the same.

- Social, occupational or recreational activities becoming more focused around the addiction: I've seen many people there who only play the games for the romances. They came for the story, but many of them keep replaying only for the romantic content. And the romances are what kept these people in the forums, too.

- Tolerance: There is an increasing trend in the BioWare forums for more romances, more diverse, more varied, more present in the story, more of all. Many people have also started lobbying more intensely regarding this topic, and more people are asking for "Romance DLC".

- Withdrawal: Look at the reaction of some fans who had their imported romances ended by the plot. Look at their reaction when they hear a rumor that their romance is going to be removed, or not going to happen. Additionaly, when the topic comes up, the people there balk at the mere notion of not having romances. Some people here have stated that romances are a must, too.

 

And here, BioWare made a mistake. They listened to these people, to the people who are so interested in romances because they are addicted to them. BioWare delivered what they wanted, and the fans rejoiced... until the feelies ended and they needed more. More people jumped in and wanted the same deal the rest were getting (seriously, some people fighting for homosexual romances were obsessive over which characters they wanted to bang). BioWare delivered again. The fans wanted more. And more. And they're lobbying in the forums and starting petitions because they need more, and they're not going away until they get what they want. And that's the situation at the BioWare forums.

 

Now, this is only the worst case scenario. Not everyone is going to succumb to addictive behaviors regarding romances, just like not everyone who plays videogames is addicted to them. And Obsidian doesn't have to make the same mistake BioWare made. But the worst case scenario has already happened, and RPG romance junkies already exist. Maybe they aren't stating their opinion openly in these forums, but they could very easily come if they learn that Obsidian is going to do romances. Perhaps the fears of the antiromancers are overblown, but they do have some basis.

 

In any case, I don't think the problem that afflicts BioWare should affect PE because really, the situation here is not the same as the situation BioWare is in, and Obsidian can nip in the bud before it becomes an annoyance. But still.

 

 

I think there's a disconnect here. I don't think every person who says they want ROMANCE in the game actually want romance with companions or mini-games to win romances

 

I know when I say I want romance in the game, I want it part of the story. I want characters to have romantic feelings where it adds to the story (not plot, story - though adding to the plot would be fine as well.) I also don't mind there being one or more options of characters in the game who are attracted to or whom my character is attracted to, or both.

 

However Obsidian would implement that is up to them.

 

Until you point to the poll that shows that people asking for romance are saying "give me the Dragon Age / Mass Effect model", you should not assume they don't mean also PS:T or Alpha Protocol or The Witcher 2 or (if I keep giving examples, someone will pick ONE and tear it apart...I'll help, try The Witcher 2, that gets picked on a lot... and I've not played it, so have at it.)

 

Well, there's this post in the very same page your post comes from that clarifies that romance means exactly that - romance with companions. Many people have also praised the virtues of immersion that romances can have for the story, so I'm fairly certain that when most people ask for romances, romances between the player character and a companion is exactly what they mean.

 

Also, if you can play entirely solo from the beginning to the end, I think this means that love is not going to play a part in the main story (though I don't know about sidequests). And since the PC is completely variable, I doubt there will be a Deionarra deal either.

 

As long as we keep in mind that we should be willing to sacrify any feature that draws significant resources from story features or gameplay design...

 

Only if it is not a core value of cRPGs. Are you arguing that romance is inherent to what makes an RPG an RPG?

 

It's not. I replied about that a few pages ago. If RPGs in the most purist sense of the word can exist where player romances are not found, then it's not a core feature.

Edited by Lurky
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Well, a lot of people also told me that Planescape: Torment was the greatest RPG ever. What was I to know?

 

Wait, what game are we talking about?

You bought PS:T because of MCA? Good god, you are good at spotting talent.

Say no to popamole!

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Well, a lot of people also told me that Planescape: Torment was the greatest RPG ever. What was I to know?

 

Wait, what game are we talking about?

You bought PS:T because of MCA? Good god, you are good at spotting talent.

 

Yeah, but I didn't like it. Couldn't finish it. Tried three times over like seven years.

 

So I guess the point of buying something because one person is involved with it is not valid at all - it failed once.

 

*other than me not liking PS:T, this is sarcasm*

 

I think there's a disconnect here. I don't think every person who says they want ROMANCE in the game actually want romance with companions or mini-games to win romances

 

I know when I say I want romance in the game, I want it part of the story. I want characters to have romantic feelings where it adds to the story (not plot, story - though adding to the plot would be fine as well.) I also don't mind there being one or more options of characters in the game who are attracted to or whom my character is attracted to, or both.

 

However Obsidian would implement that is up to them.

 

Until you point to the poll that shows that people asking for romance are saying "give me the Dragon Age / Mass Effect model", you should not assume they don't mean also PS:T or Alpha Protocol or The Witcher 2 or (if I keep giving examples, someone will pick ONE and tear it apart...I'll help, try The Witcher 2, that gets picked on a lot... and I've not played it, so have at it.)

 

Well, there's this post in the very same page your post comes from that clarifies that romance means exactly that - romance with companions. Many people have also praised the virtues of immersion that romances can have for the story, so I'm fairly certain that when most people ask for romances, romances between the player character and a companion is exactly what they mean.

 

*ahem*

 

" I don't think every person who says they want ROMANCE in the game actually want romance with companions or mini-games to win romances"

 

You can find some who want that, yes. My point was that they aren't everyone. They aren't me, for example. Given my choice, I don't even want NPC companions. *shrug*

 

Also, if you can play entirely solo from the beginning to the end, I think this means that love is not going to play a part in the main story (though I don't know about sidequests). And since the PC is completely variable, I doubt there will be a Deionarra deal either.

 

I don't even know who Deionarra is, so moot point is moot to me.

 

But there are plenty of games where you don't have a party and you have romance in the game. Plenty. Even with choices.

 

Ever play Alpha Protocol?

Edited by Merin
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Well, a lot of people also told me that Planescape: Torment was the greatest RPG ever. What was I to know?

 

Wait, what game are we talking about?

You bought PS:T because of MCA? Good god, you are good at spotting talent.

 

Yeah, but I didn't like it. Couldn't finish it. Tried three times over like seven years.

 

So I guess the point of buying something because one person is involved with it is not valid at all - it failed once.

 

*other than me not liking PS:T, this is sarcasm*

Well I still would question the idea of buying a game because of a voice actor but fans gonna fan, it's not like don't have my share of embarrassments. Like starting this argument. That was stupid of me.

Say no to popamole!

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Well I still would question the idea of buying a game because of a voice actor but fans gonna fan, it's not like don't have my share of embarrassments. Like starting this argument. That was stupid of me.

 

Yeah it was a dumb point to make. I agree.

 

But only as it's nothing to do with the topic at hand - romances in games.

 

I shouldn't have digressed with the Chobot point, either. It's largely irrelevant.

 

But, overall, I will agree that even following creators whom you like and have not let you down before has it's pitfalls.

 

I watched Red State. And Inception. And Avatar. And played Dragon Age 2.

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*ahem*

 

" I don't think every person who says they want ROMANCE in the game actually want romance with companions or mini-games to win romances"

 

You can find some who want that, yes. My point was that they aren't everyone. They aren't me, for example. Given my choice, I don't even want NPC companions. *shrug*

 

Some people want romances with companions. Some people just want love to be an important part of the game. Different people like different things. I think we can agree on that.

 

I don't even know who Deionarra is, so moot point is moot to me.

 

But there are plenty of games where you don't have a party and you have romance in the game. Plenty. Even with choices.

 

Ever play Alpha Protocol?

 

Some RPGs in the most purist sense of the term have romances. Some don't. Some even have the "no romances" thing make sense in the story. This means that romances are a possible feature of RPGs, but not a core feature, such as, say, having control of the characterization of the player character. And the reason why antiromancers insist on making this distinction is because, for some people who like romances, romances are fundamental to roleplaying. And they can be very adamant in stating this.

 

 

Look, I'm not opposed to romances in any way, shape or form, as long as what is in the game is fun, immersive and well done. I was just trying to do the same thing as Monte Carlo said here. A balance point to some of the most absolutist statements the most passionate proromancers can say.

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I think one, maybe two, people have said romances are core to cRPGs.

 

That statement, IMO, is as wrong-headed as claiming that story is core to cRPGs.

 

Without getting into an argument about "what makes an RPG", I don't think you'l find consensus on what is core.

 

It has been lost in all the back and forth at this point, but I'll reiterate what my stance on romances in cRPGs is -

 

I voted yes on all three.

 

I really like romance in cRPGs, just like I like combat, dialog choices, deep stories, making my own party, having companions, being able to craft my own spells and items... the list is long.

 

I don't NEED any one particular item in that list. If one gets sacrificed (or many, usually) for the game's sake, I'm good with that if the game ends up better overall.

 

Romance isn't a must in an RPG for me, but so isn't combat or magic or loot or stats or... you get my point.

 

I'd like it, but if it doesn't fit the game's focus, don't shoe-horn it in.

 

So, yeah, I don't even know if I'd fit as a "promancer" (whatever that title means.)

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but not a core feature, such as, say, having control of the characterization of the player character.

That's not a core feature of RPGs.

 

That's a feature that you like (I like it too, for reference), not a core feature. FFXIII was an RPG, and it didn't have any control of the characterization of the player character. If you disagree you're just redefining words to mean "things I like."

Edited by Tale
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- Difficulty cutting down or controlling the addictive behavior: Many people there confess that they can't stop themselves from romancing a character. Someone here in the romance threads has also admitted to the same.

I'm not addicted, I can quit Claudia Black any time. If I wanted to. I just might after this next Farscape marathon and my next playthrough of DAO. It's easy!

 

But seriously, I like your insights.

 

While I consider myself part of the anti camp, I still think there'd be value in a romance that specifically bucked the trend and expectations for romances. That seems right up Obsidian's alley and consistent with past works. If you look at Neeshka, where there wasn't what most would consider a romance, and Bishop, where he betrays you even if you romance him. In New Vegas there was Veronica and Arcade, who weren't even technically romances, but the conclusions of their questline could end up with them leaving your party entirely despite doing everything to an ideal.

 

With Sawyer at the helm, I think the game could very easily end up with a romance that ends on a sour note with the partner leaving after nicking half your stuff. Or even something far more subtle completely lacking any lovey-dovey interactions that I think most people are after. I think there'd be a value to the game thematically and for medium growth despite the fact that lots of people seemed to get the wrong idea from romeo and juliet. But only if they make an effort to go against the grain.

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That's not a core feature of RPGs.

 

That's a feature that you like (I like it too, for reference), not a core feature. FFXIII was an RPG, and it didn't have any control of the characterization of the player character. If you disagree you're just redefining words to mean "things I like."

 

 

I disagree. I believe it is a core feature of RPGs and without it, the game becomes less of a RPG. Neither necessarily a bad game or RPG, but certainly not a point in its favor.

 

Also, the so called 'JRPG' genre isn't really about RPGs. They are more like subgenres of strategy and action - roleplaying and player agency (hell, interactivity itself more recently) was never their focus. There are even some JRPG designers who are baffled about storytelling with any degree of player agency.

Edited by Delterius
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but not a core feature, such as, say, having control of the characterization of the player character.

That's not a core feature of RPGs.

 

That's a feature that you like (I like it too, for reference), not a core feature. FFXIII was an RPG, and it didn't have any control of the characterization of the player character. If you disagree you're just redefining words to mean "things I like."

 

FFXIII is a JRPG, a genre that the most purist WRPG fans will say are not "true RPGs". But let's not bring that particular flamewar here ;)

 

I'll clarify: I'm talking about RPGs in that same purist definition. Character customization, combat, dialog choices, deep stories, things like that. Perhaps WRPG would be more appropiate, so sorry for my lack of precision.

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Stay on track.

"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."
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I think we should have a Bromance.

 

I hope there are bromances in PE, I should make a new thread. Being able to (magically) brofist an NPC will enhance my experience.

Why has elegance found so little following? Elegance has the disadvantage that hard work is needed to achieve it and a good education to appreciate it. - Edsger Wybe Dijkstra

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Please tell me you are only being ironic about wanting bromances in Project Eternity, because if not you are hilariously and blatantly biased by your own hatred of the diversity of forms of expression of human sexuality.

I disagree. I believe it is a core feature of RPGs and without it, the game becomes less of a RPG. Neither necessarily a bad game or RPG, but certainly not a point in its favor.

 

Also, the so called 'JRPG' genre isn't really about RPGs. They are more like subgenres of strategy and action - roleplaying and player agency (hell, interactivity itself recently) was never their focus.

Nope. Sorry, words have meanings, you don't get to define them as "things I like" and exclude all things that you don't like.

 

I happen to not, generally speaking, like RPGs without player choice. Shockingly, the fact that I do not like them does not somehow redefine words to fit my taste.

I'll clarify: I'm talking about RPGs in that same purist definition. Character customization, combat, dialog choices, deep stories, things like that. Perhaps WRPG would be more appropiate, so sorry for my lack of precision.
But then you're just defining a "core feature" as a thing that you want to be in the game and a non-core feature as a thing that you don't want to be in the game. Certainly it's valid to want certain things but not others, but the pretensions of y'all that your opinions represent Objective Reality on what an RPG Is is ridiculous.
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Nope. Sorry, words have meanings, you don't get to define them as "things I like" and exclude all things that you don't like.

 

This is your silly prejudice speaking, I happen to like Strategy and Action japanese games a lot. I just don't believe the misguided (though historical) use of the word 'RPG', pertaining to which games those are inspired by (80s american RPGs inspired the first 'JRPGs'). But that's no more than a opinion that I voice.

 

Sure, the roleplaying potential of both J'RPGs' and a pure-gamist RPG are often similar, but the J'RPG' never had the idea of roleplaying driving them. The japanese were always focused on something else and the westerners have always shown preference towards player-driven story and characterization. If you analyze the interactivity that defines J'RPGs', then what little characterization is allowed for and only for combat does not get to define the character itself - generally the game portion of a JRPG is segregated from the story.

 

There are definitions of roleplaying that 'validate' the JRPG, such as the simplistic immersion school of thought. But that kinda validates the entire interactive medium as roleplaying experiences, only confirming that the RPG genre sticks out as something focused on player agency.

 

Hell, its no coincidence that some (if not most) of the best japanese games are actually labelled strategy or are old 90s RPGs that uncharacteristically allowed for player freedom.

 

I'll stop derailling the thread now.

Edited by Delterius
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There are roughly ten million customers who think Diablo is an RPG.

 

Let's not get into that discussion.

 

Or anymore about Chobot. Or Cruise.

 

For those who don't want romances, are there other features people are asking for you don't want that you'd rather have romances than?

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