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The Sharmat

[Merged] Gods save us another romance thread

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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EDIT: Callimachus, what about the questions do you find biased? If they are phrased poorly I'd like to correct them.

 

The purpose of the last question was actually to discern what percentage of people in favor of romances felt that "if you can have one, you should have them all.", if that makes snse.

 

You ask:

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

 

 

Well... of course no one would want ANYTHING to detract from story features. But that antithesis is fallacious. A romance story is a story feature. And, if done well (as is true in regard to any story feature) can propell many diverse and complex plots. Think about the Arthurian tales and the way the plot is enriched by the tiangle of Arthur-Guinevere-Lancelot, the adventure of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, or even the way the plot is started to begin with with Uther's love (or lust) for Igraine. Tristan and Isolde is a story entirely based on a romance plot, as is in its own way the Odyssey. The Iliad, the Argonautica, the Aenaid, the Kalevala, the Mahabharata, the tales of Cu Chulainne all contain stories of love and romance. These stories are not antithetic or detract from the adveturous heroic sides of the story, but instead intesify it. Even in places where the hero chooses to sever the romance early on (like in the Aenaid, or the Argonautica), that action serves to intensify the drama, and lit other aspects of the hero's destiny, agenda, goals, and character. So I think a better way to phrase this question would be: Do you consider a romance plot as important story within the game?

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Your poll is absurd, because you are stating that romances can draw significant resources from other parts of the the game, which is simply not true.

Thus the *IF*. I'm also getting the impression from the one of your post that you think I'm opposed to romance options. Which is not the case.

 

Gorth: That's true, but it's certainly a plot in the game that heavily dealt in romance as a theme, and I think the plot would have been poorer without it. I suppose it's not what most people think of in this scenario though. And you totally make me want Avellone to write an in game romance. I can't really think of any game where what you're describing has happened and it would be awesome.

Edited by The Sharmat

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Your poll is absurd, because you are stating that romances can draw significant resources from other parts of the the game, which is simply not true.

 

How about time as a resource that is wasted while writing romances? Not to mention probably the sanity of whoever writes them.

Edited by Tale

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Well... of course no one would want ANYTHING to detract from story features.

As you say, romance is a story feature. Thus the use of the qualifier "Other". And apparently, according to this poll, a sizable minority are willing to divert a non-negligible degree of effort and writer time from other features of the story to at least one romance arc. This poll is not intended to be a value judgement. You can never get something for nothing, and time spent on any feature is coming with an opportunity cost weighted against every other feature it could have been spent on.

 

I felt the question "Do you consider it important" to be far too nonspecific. Important in regards to what?

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Romances: KILL IT WITH FIRE.

 

I'd prefer Obsidian spend exactly 0% of development time on Romances and instead spend it on content content content!

 

er...if they included romances in the game, wouldn't that actually make romance's part of the game's content? :p

 

Romances to me are just fairly specialized character relationships. I can certainly play an RPG where my party's relationships are left up to my imagination to draw out; but I also have no issue my PC being able to talk to NPCs and develop friendships/enmity with them either.

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Odd that the Valygar romance had to be dropped from BG2 for lack of resources if the resources to fit even those text-based romances into the story were trivial ... I also agree with The Sharmat that if folks want to discuss their preference that swords, some spells, some trees, or companions be omitted that would be fine.

Edited by Lady Evenstar

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Your poll is absurd, because you are stating that romances can draw significant resources from other parts of the the game, which is simply not true.

Thus the *IF*. I'm also getting the impression from the one of your post that you think I'm opposed to romance options. Which is not the case.

I was hoping that you would actually respond to what I wrote, but you choose to ignore it Sad. ^^

 

Anybody that creates such a one sided poll has to be against romances. lol


:closed:

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Anybody that creates such a one sided poll has to be against romances. lol

But I'm not. Look at my posting record in other topics.

 

I'd hoped that a thread discussing specifics instead of broad statements could lead to more intelligent discussion and less pigeonholing, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Oh well. I'm sure Obsidian will handle whatever choice they make intelligently, romance or no.

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A pretty underhanded poll. By pitting romances against the two core mechanics of an RPG (story and gameplay) you basically imply that implementing any form of romance necessarily must have a negative impact on the game itself.

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I suppose I'm not explaining this well.

 

The purpose of the poll was to get an idea of the priority at which people put romance options vs. various other areas the same effort could be spent, not whether or not romances should exist. Thus why voters were supposed to only be from the pro-romance demographic, and the hypothetical situation that due to some specific circumstance romance WOULD take a non negligible amount of content from another source. Given that, which of these features was less important to you? Which would you feel more comfortable with losing attention in favor of a romance arc?

 

If this idea isn't getting across, I'd like help coming up with a better wording for the questions to accomplish what I intended, so perhaps a better poll could be offered.

 

EDIT: In a narrative RPG, story and gameplay play into each other. And a romance sub plot is most definitely part of the story. Thus the OTHER story features, and not just 'story features'.

Edited by The Sharmat

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I'd also point out that PS:T was a single-protagonist game. Of course a single, dev-defined character is going to have a more fleshed out background than a player-generated character--at least as far as the game is able to recognize. One can argue whether you prefer to play a pre-defined main character or a player-customized one, but it's just silly to argue that because something was done with Geralt or TNO that it's reasonable to expect it in a fundamentally different kind of game--and vice versa. Both pre-definition and customization come with a set of trade-offs.

Edited by Lady Evenstar

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Well you have games that let you marry, and games that let you visit the red light district, either way can be fun to have the option, but not a necessity imo.

 

Sex scenes could be funny in a isometric view :D Especially with a party of 5 ! .... :D

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A pretty underhanded poll. By pitting romances against the two core mechanics of an RPG (story and gameplay) you basically imply that implementing any form of romance necessarily must have a negative impact on the game itself.

 

In any situation where there is Finite resources, there has to be some effect between adding element "A" vs element "B". I don't see what's "underhanded" about the poll.

 

While I find it fairly doubtful Romances would pull resources from gameplay (which I think from a development standpoint has to be the thing which all others revolve around), i think it'd be very likely romances would pull resources from story (or more accurately put, exchange additional external story in favor of additional inter-party story)

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I suppose I'm not explaining this well.

 

The purpose of the poll was to get an idea of the priority at which people put romance options vs. various other areas the same effort could be spent, not whether or not romances should exist. Thus why voters were supposed to only be from the pro-romance demographic, and the hypothetical situation that due to some specific circumstance romance WOULD take a non negligible amount of content from another source. Given that, which of these features was less important to you? Which would you feel more comfortable with losing attention in favor of a romance arc?

 

If this idea isn't getting across, I'd like help coming up with a better wording for the questions to accomplish what I intended, so perhaps a better poll could be offered.

 

EDIT: In a narrative RPG, story and gameplay play into each other. And a romance sub plot is most definitely part of the story. Thus the OTHER story features, and not just 'story features'.

...than you really should have worded your poll differently. Right now it pretty much reads: "Do you want romances or do you want a RPG that doesn't suck ?".

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Romances: KILL IT WITH FIRE.

 

I'd prefer Obsidian spend exactly 0% of development time on Romances and instead spend it on content content content!

 

Romance could be a part of the content if it's well done.

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I'd also point out that PS:T was a single-protagonist game. Of course a single, dev-defined character is going to have a more fleshed out background than a player-generated character--at least as far as the game is able to recognize.

I think KOTOR 2 struck a nice balance here. The PC was customizable, but always had a specific background as a Jedi Knight that had left the order. This also allowed certain NPCs to have preconceived notions of the player as well as pre-defined relationships, at least from their side of the picture, while simultaneously not forcing the PC to have a specific stance. Atris always has a thing for the male version of the Exile, but the game leaves it ambiguous as to whether it was ever reciprocated, and it works for the story and that character arc in either case. Rational adjustments are made based on the choice of gender for the PC as well.

 

EDIT:BSoda, any ideas for a better way to word it?

Edited by The Sharmat

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While I find it fairly doubtful Romances would pull resources from gameplay (which I think from a development standpoint has to be the thing which all others revolve around), i think it'd be very likely romances would pull resources from story (or more accurately put, exchange additional external story in favor of additional inter-party story)

 

Also, it would inevitably be more gated story, which is fine if what remains after subtracting the amount of romance-specific content for characters not romanced in a particular playthrough is adequate, but not if it isn't.

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So far I've only seen romance done well in PS:T, and even then it didn't affect the game path enough.

You need to broaden your horizons, then.

 

cg01558.jpg


The ending of the words is ALMSIVI.

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A romance scenario could be set up over multiple games, if they really plan to have us import characters into sequels. Could start off all friendly and maybe some flirting in the first game and having a great adventure togheter. Then in the sequel (with more time/money/designers) the relationship continues naturaly and you end up "going steady". third game = marriage? Who knows ;)

 

Having that layed out over multiple games and my characters lifetime would rock my world. Also, this leaves the risk of being cut of if there are no more games in the series. As such, you should never use romance as a cliffhanger!

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EDIT:BSoda, any ideas for a better way to word it?

 

How about losing the Implication that romances would have a "significant" impact on the dev resources. Your poll is simply loaded with negative wording like "sacrificing" resources; as if they'd be wasted when used to create a romance.

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Romances: KILL IT WITH FIRE.

 

I'd prefer Obsidian spend exactly 0% of development time on Romances and instead spend it on content content content!

 

Romance could be a part of the content if it's well done.

 

If Josh has already has this in mind for specific reason related to the story and story dynamic I'd be fine with that. But just adding romance because OMG I WANNA ROMANCE MAH PARTY is a waste of Obsidian's time.

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Having that layed out over multiple games and my characters lifetime would rock my world.

I love the implication of save imports and character development having time to mature over multiple games. It was something very promising in the Mass Effect series that I feel was very hit or miss. Not sure it's feasible to pull it off on a project like this where the future is so uncertain, though...

 

How about losing the Implication that romances would have a "significant" impact on the dev resources. Your poll is simply loaded with negative wording like "sacrificing" resources; as if they'd be wasted when used to create a romance.

I'm not saying that it inherently would. I'm saying that given a hypothetical where it would, are you willing to sacrifice it, and why?

 

Investing resources in ANYTHING sacrifices resources that could be used for anything else. That's unavoidable, because the game has limited resources. The question is the comparative value of what you get out of said resources. I feel that a well done romance or two could be a net gain, but it all depends on context. This poll offers several scenarios to gauge what people that want a romance arc value more than a romance arc.

 

I never meant to put such an implication in there, but I'll need more specifics on how to avoid it without changing the nature of the question.

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