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Have you ever found a situation where you are and fellow villagers are happily farming and chillaxing, having a couple of beers. Suddenly out of the blue, you see some six heavily armed strangers wielding all sorts of weapons and strange magics.

 

You shout and yell to them, "Hey this is our territory - go bugger off!" but they don't listen... they just trudge on and trample over your nice farm. They even have the temerity to pick some of your best apples and eat them right in front of you. Even worst, they start invading your neighbours house by smashing down the doors or lockpicking. They then raid and loot all your valuables, chests and gold. How the heck are you going to stand by there and do nothing?

 

When you ask them to stop, they don't seem to understand. Brandishing your clubs, you try to intimidate them to stop, but nah... they're not impressed and start their wholesale slaughter... Before you know it, your entire village is in burning and in ruins and you're lying down in a pool of your own blood. Before you pass out, the only two phrases you hear from these savages sound vaguely like ....

 

"We're heroes..."

 

Just because we're ogres/trolls/non-humanoids, what rights do these people have to kill us and take our valuables?

 

***

Yep, this idea germinated from the fact that after playing countless CRPGs, I'm never quite happy with the fact that the PC usually invades other non-humanoid lands and start killing without even stopping to question as to what rights do they have to do so.

 

So, could we have a quest line where we meet a race that is very isolated alongst these lines. If the PC acts diplomatically, he can avoid conflict but can't communicate unless he spends some time with them. If he or his companion has some linguistic skills, then he can communicate with them.

 

If however, the PC ignores the non-humanoids and starts rifling through the posessions of the non-humanoid species, this will invite reprisals as they try to defend their land and possessions. Fighting and killing these non-humanoids could have very adverse consequences such as starting potential deadly conflict between this species and the known civilization... The PC may then have to atone for his atrocities and try to act as a ambassador to quell the conflict.

Edited by agewisdom
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Being caught stealing should definitely trigger hostility, the current CRPG trend (and JRPG baseline) of letting you loot everything from everwhere without consequences is bad. I really like Skyrim's crime system, where you can fight, run, pay a fine, go to jail or (for some crimes) use personal favours to get out of punnishment. Probably took a fair chunk of dev resource though, might not be feasible to implement for this project.

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Way back in Pool of Radiance, when the party of characters entered the lizardman village, they had the option to slaughter the tribe or learn more about the situation and resolve the quest differently.

 

In the "countless" cRPGs I've played, the player is usually given a choice or else the monsters have attacked first and it is a matter of self-defense. I cannot recall ever approaching a situation such as described in the original post.

 

Seems like there's a certain amount of projection going on.

 

In these adventures, we play the good guys.

 

Harumph!

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Way back in Pool of Radiance, when the party of characters entered the lizardman village, they had the option to slaughter the tribe or learn more about the situation and resolve the quest differently.

 

In the "countless" cRPGs I've played, the player is usually given a choice or else the monsters have attacked first and it is a matter of self-defense. I cannot recall ever approaching a situation such as described in the original post.

 

Seems like there's a certain amount of projection going on.

 

In these adventures, we play the good guys.

 

Harumph!

 

I think if the race or quest is set up properly:

1. You see warning signs such as dead entrails near the entrance to the village;

2. Or other NPCs warning you to stay away from the area due to the race being very territorial.

 

Then you should either stay away or approach without equipping any weapons. If you go in fully armed into another race's territory, why shouldn't they either intimidate you and failing that attack you? Even if they attack you first, can you blame then for defending their territory against aggressive armed invaders?

 

By the way, maybe I've played too many ARPGs recently... but your example on the Pools of Radiance is definitely something I like to see in modern CRPGs.

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If you go in fully armed into another race's territory, why shouldn't they either intimidate you and failing that attack you? Even if they attack you first, can you blame then for defending their territory against aggressive armed invaders?

 

 

I disagree. This is an adventure, and our party is on important business. We do not go wandering into a region without good reason. At the same time, this is a dangerous world, so we are not going to lay down our arms. If the local savages want to jump up and down and offer resistance, we will answer in kind.

 

This is not to say the party goes in to commit atrocities the way you characterized. More often, the party is there to help. It is up the indigenous population to act civilized if they are not facing an overt threat from the party. Merely carrying weapons and wearing armor might be "aggressive", but it does not mean the locals are being threatened.

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Have you ever found a situation where you are and fellow villagers are happily farming and chillaxing, having a couple of beers. Suddenly out of the blue, you see some six heavily armed strangers wielding all sorts of weapons and strange magics.

 

You shout and yell to them, "Hey this is our territory - go bugger off!" but they don't listen... they just trudge on and trample over your nice farm. They even have the temerity to pick some of your best apples and eat them right in front of you. Even worst, they start invading your neighbours house by smashing down the doors or lockpicking. They then raid and loot all your valuables, chests and gold. How the heck are you going to stand by there and do nothing?

 

When you ask them to stop, they don't seem to understand. Brandishing your clubs, you try to intimidate them to stop, but nah... they're not impressed and start their wholesale slaughter... Before you know it, your entire village is in burning and in ruins and you're lying down in a pool of your own blood. Before you pass out, the only two phrases you hear from these savages sound vaguely like ....

 

"We're heroes..."

 

Just because we're ogres/trolls/non-humanoids, what rights do these people have to kill us and take our valuables?

 

***

Yep, this idea germinated from the fact that after playing countless CRPGs, I'm never quite happy with the fact that the PC usually invades other non-humanoid lands and start killing without even stopping to question as to what rights do they have to do so.

 

So, could we have a quest line where we meet a race that is very isolated alongst these lines. If the PC acts diplomatically, he can avoid conflict but can't communicate unless he spends some time with them. If he or his companion has some linguistic skills, then he can communicate with them.

 

If however, the PC ignores the non-humanoids and starts rifling through the posessions of the non-humanoid species, this will invite reprisals as they try to defend their land and possessions. Fighting and killing these non-humanoids could have very adverse consequences such as starting potential deadly conflict between this species and the known civilization... The PC may then have to atone for his atrocities and try to act as a ambassador to quell the conflict.

 

I find well reasoned and agree with pretty much everything you said except for the part about the language barrier. I don't think that makes for interesting gameplay. The rest of it is totally true though, regardless of if a place is "remote" or not. PC's are usually such douchebags. Why do we get to take everyone's valuables? Why is our murder justified simply because they attack us first? (Game rules typically are that even if you're trespassing, if you get attacked you're in the right regardless of how much you were provoking to begin with).

 

Also, stealth skills. Let's say you manage to "hide" or whatever while picking the locks of this town. It doesn't change the fact that even if they didn't see you actually go inside their homes, they still saw 6 douchebags walking through their town, and all of their valuables going missing coincided with their "visit". They'll be able to put 2 and 2 together. They should form a militia and chase the player down, nullifying any "side quests" that the players recieved while they were there. I'd like to see players have to get rich and powerful through some other means than taking everyone else's stuff all the time.

 

Typically PCs get money in RPG's by:

 

-Killing enemies and looting their bodies

-looting occupied buildings and stealing NPC's valuables

-selling this loot to some vendor who couldn't care less about its origin

 

NPC's also have a habit of conveniently forgetting a players crimes or being too stupid to figure out that it was you that took their stuff. I really think that a player should run into two main options as far as making money goes:

 

-The "legitimate" way of getting quests, completing them and being rewarded.

-The "criminal" way of looting houses and killing townsfolk when they come after you to get it back or seek revenge. This should nullify any chance of completing any quests in that town or region and you should be hunted.

 

I don't believe in the "benevolent douchebag" who takes everyone's stuff yet is loved by the townsfolk because they rescued Vanessa from the Ogre encampment where she was conveniently not being eaten or raped but saved for later in some kind of tent or shackles. It seems just as plausible to me that Vanessa isn't a captive but instead finding employment, the Ogres are instead a band of mercenaries, and the PC and his party are just jerks who like to slaughter everyone. They happen to come across a daughter of someone in a town they just looted when they slaughter yet another band of armed men, and take her back to that town to ransom her back to her parents after informing them that their daughter's husband or friends or co-workers were just killed by the party. There's not much about this that makes the player heroic.

 

I know some people will read what I just wrote and think "well that's not what the quest was, and it WAS a heroic deed" but honestly, a lot of times people aren't out to help the townspeople. When people are playing they simply slaughter armed men over and over and over again and happen to run into items while doing so that give them XP. They kill the armed men because they have a red circle around their feet. People who see things (like red circles) that aren't actually there are Schitzophrenics.

 

Still think it's far fetched? It's unrealistic that anywhere outside of a town it's an uncivilized morass of people who are evil and must be wiped from the face of the earth. Meanwhile inside of towns everyone goes about their business while being protected by a few token guards in super shiny armor who look like they've never fought a day in their life. Also, nobody is depressed about the state of the world they live in and how dangerous it actually is. Having the entire world be a big deathtrap would be horrifying.

Edited by KenThomas
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The actual example in the OP is interesting, but I don't think it could be reasonably implemented in this type of RPG.

 

First, if the party arrives at a location and everyone is friendly (green circles), but when they attempt to proceed there is an obvious dialog attempt followed by everyone turning hostile (red circles), then just about everyone is going to deduce "Ooops, I did something wrong, I need to reload". This rather defeats the purpose of creating any significant content for the "Didn't negotiate with the village" path.

 

Secondly, this is highly likely to be a game that only supports travel between a small number (10-20) of locations via a "world map" system, with new areas most commonly being opened up via quest assignment. That's how BG (especially 2, but 1 was mostly like this), PS:T, and KOTR 2 (& IWD, if you include these titles as well). In such a model you can't simply "wander" into a village -- you were sent there, or at least somewhere in the vicinity, and likely have instructions on how to deal with the village (stay away, kill everyone, whatever).

 

Finally... Assuming that this is indeed an isolated village, why should anyone in "civilization" care if you wiped them all out? How would they even know that you wiped them out -- even if there are survivors, presumably they don't have any contacts with "civilization" to know where to go, nor do they know they right language to complain to anyone (otherwise, you wouldn't have had a problem in the first place). It sounds like you feel that evil acts should have consequences simply because they are evil, and that's not something that I want to see in the game.

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