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Talking to people with your companions


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Not to mention that (and I understand this isn't going to be based on D&D or the like) if you have a conversation in a TT game with the party, it goes almost exactly like it does in SoZ

Yeah, almost in the sense that one leader does not control what they say, players say what players want, either it leads to better or worse.

No, I don't want to debate if we should act as DM or PC or DM for our PC's in game.

Yes, I enjoy party-based games as much as PC-based ones.

 

Maybe for once we'll have a reason for diplomancer RPCs. A Shadow Thief should have bonus dialogue options when talking to Shadow Thieves, a Red Wizard of Thay should have it when talking to other Red Wizards of Thay.

I like that approach too.

 

The PC is just one more member of the adventuring group.

In games like these, PC is protagonist, main force in the story. In party based games, whole party is a protagonist. These are two ways of storytelling, different, with their strengths and weaknesess.

Edited by Shadenuat
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This is vital. In any party-based game, the party should be able to have as its spokesperson the party-member best suited to the role. Forcing the PC to do all the talking is a terrible idea.

 

I recall during DAO's long development I asked BioWare if they were going to allow us to use any party member as party spokesperson, and they actually denied that any of their games had ever done that. Of course, they were wrong - the option is actually documented in the Baldur's Gate manual, and exists unchanged in BG2. But David Gaider, who wrote much of BG2, had never known about it.

 

Furthermore, forcing the PC to act as party spokesperson often results in the game treating him like he's the de facto party leader, which also shouldn't be mandatory. And that can result in the game's mechanics treating the PC differently (skill points, death, etc). And if the game assumes he's the leader, often he's not allowed to be in any party position but the front, which limits what sorts of tactical formations are available.

 

I very much hope that any party member can act as party spokesperson. I very much hope that any party member can be the one speakig the player-selected dialogue.

God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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Like I said, I seriously doubt we'll have the SoZ model. It's simply not that type of game.

 

But I'm hoping for extensive, skill-based interjections.

Possibly depending on the influence stat that you might have with that character (if that is present in the game).

Say no to popamole!

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Like I said, I seriously doubt we'll have the SoZ model. It's simply not that type of game.

 

But I'm hoping for extensive, skill-based interjections.

Possibly depending on the influence stat that you might have with that character (if that is present in the game).

 

That too, but I was referring to the skills of the companion doing the talking.

 

For example, you know in PS:T when you can ask Dak'kon to translate the dabus language for you? That could be based on his stats, skills or talents. (maybe not the best example but you get it)

Edited by Infinitron
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Bioware has done this a bit with both Mass Effect and Dragon Age.

That's not even close to the same thing. The PC is still initiating all of the conversations, and the game assumes that he is the one speaking.

 

The Baldur's Gate model is what I'd like to see. Imoen had 17 Charisma, so she got to talk to people.

God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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For example, you know in PS:T when you can ask Dak'kon to translate the dabus language for you?

Yeah, but I think using his skills or feats to do something similar when speaking with Ravel to get that bonus hair-item would kinda ruin whole narrative of that encounter, as her obsession with TNO was important part of her character.

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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I think that's where I stand.

 

I'm used to, and welcome, companions interjecting and possibly providing success through those interjections. But I'm not comfortable with SoZ style picking and choosing who says what to get the maximum benefit. Unless the conversation system becomes Alpha Protocol levels of complex and companions replace stances.

 

Now that would change my mind.

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"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."
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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I want direct control over what my party does, and speaking is a thing they do.

 

Internally, I don't mind if they voice dissent or raise concerns or argue, but when dealing with the world the party speaks as one.

God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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I really don't think it's that kind of game, Sylvius. The companions will have autonomous personalities - why do you think there are so few of them planned? It's gonna be like Planescape Torment.

 

Obsidian would have to write unique dialogue for each companion, for every single NPC in the game.

 

Like I said, the best we can probably hope for is to have a very extensive and complex system of companion interjections (including the ability to invite them to interject, like that example I described with Dak'kon)

Edited by Infinitron
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Like I said, I seriously doubt we'll have the SoZ model. It's simply not that type of game.

 

But I'm hoping for extensive, skill-based interjections.

How come? I'd think that this would be the perfect game for the SoZ model.

 

If anything, I think it was quite squandered in Storm of Zehir, what with the focus on multiple PC:s rather than deep or engrossing RPC:s.

Edited by Luckmann

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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I think that's where I stand.

 

I'm used to, and welcome, companions interjecting and possibly providing success through those interjections. But I'm not comfortable with SoZ style picking and choosing who says what to get the maximum benefit. Unless the conversation system becomes Alpha Protocol levels of complex and companions replace stances.

That's an interesting idea. The conversation system in Alpha Protocol was brilliant and my personal favorite part of the game. However with the number of companions available and assuming each of those companions can develop different dialogue/influence skills to various degrees I fear that may produce a system so complex and involved that it may fall outside the scope of what could realistically be funded via Kickstarter and/or would take serious time and resources away from other aspects of the game. Edited by Keyrock

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Like I said, I seriously doubt we'll have the SoZ model. It's simply not that type of game.

 

But I'm hoping for extensive, skill-based interjections.

How come? I'd think that this would be the perfect game for the SoZ model.

 

If anything, I think it was quite squandered in Storm of Zehir, what with the focus on multiple PC:s rather than deep or engrossing RPC:s.

 

Okay then, can you describe how you would implement an SoZ-like system in Planescape Torment? Because that's the level of quality they're aiming to achieve here.

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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I think that's where I stand.

 

I'm used to, and welcome, companions interjecting and possibly providing success through those interjections. But I'm not comfortable with SoZ style picking and choosing who says what to get the maximum benefit. Unless the conversation system becomes Alpha Protocol levels of complex and companions replace stances.

That's an interesting idea. The conversation system in Alpha Protocol was brilliant and my personal favorite part of the game. However with the number of companions available and assuming each of those companions can develop different dialogue/influence skills to various degrees I fear that may produce a system so complex and involved that it may fall outside the scope of what could realistically be funded via Kickstarter and/or would take serious time and resources away from other aspects of the game.

The more I think about it, the more I like it. But yeah, outside the scope.
"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."
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Like I said, I seriously doubt we'll have the SoZ model. It's simply not that type of game.

 

But I'm hoping for extensive, skill-based interjections.

How come? I'd think that this would be the perfect game for the SoZ model.

 

If anything, I think it was quite squandered in Storm of Zehir, what with the focus on multiple PC:s rather than deep or engrossing RPC:s.

 

Okay then, can you describe how you would implement an SoZ-like system in Planescape Torment? Because that's the level of quality they're aiming to achieve here.

The party consists of the Nameless One, Dak'kon, Fall-From-Grace, Mortimer Rictusgrin, Annah-of-the-Shadows, and Vhailor.

 

You talk to an NPC from the Society of Sensations. The Nameless One, being the de facto leader of the party has all the important conversation options; the questions, the major interaction. The conversation isn't important or big enough to warrant interjections from Fall-From-Grace, but Morte interjects with some quip about titties. As you talk, you can talk with any of the other RPCs, as well as The Nameless One; even Vhailor. If they can't relate to the NPC you are talking to in any way whatsoever, they only have very basic conversation options, excepting if they qualify for - through ranks of Diplomacy, Bluff, whatever - special conversation options; but when you talk with Fall-From-Grace, you can opt to ask the Sensate in question some non-standard things that relates to Fall-From-Grace's relationship/membership of the Society of Sensations. If you talk with Morte, you will have the opportunity to comment on titties.

 

In the same exact way you run into a Shadow Thief in Storm of Zehir that gives Belueth the Calm, herself a Shadow Thief, in which she has special conversation options.

 

Just better, because you will actually have real characters in this game, not bare-bones shells.

Edited by Luckmann

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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I think that's where I stand.

 

I'm used to, and welcome, companions interjecting and possibly providing success through those interjections. But I'm not comfortable with SoZ style picking and choosing who says what to get the maximum benefit. Unless the conversation system becomes Alpha Protocol levels of complex and companions replace stances.

 

Now that would change my mind.

 

You mean like having "Bob, take it from here." as an option, and then he (or whomever) starts talking with no input about what he says, like an on-demand party interjection (or for a better example, the option for Virgil taking over the conversation with the guy you meet when leaving Shrouded Hills in Arcanum)?

 

I can see that working really well, possibly even better than the SoZ-style dialog, especialy since the party is going to be mostly companion NPCs.

Edited by Foefaller
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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I want direct control over what my party does, and speaking is a thing they do.

 

Internally, I don't mind if they voice dissent or raise concerns or argue, but when dealing with the world the party speaks as one.

if that's how it works I won't really be too upset. But I would prefer if that's not the case. I want my party to feel like real people. I'd honestly rather they just aren't included in conversations with the world than have me control what they say.

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I really don't think it's that kind of game, Sylvius. The companions will have autonomous personalities - why do you think there are so few of them planned? It's gonna be like Planescape Torment.

 

Obsidian would have to write unique dialogue for each companion, for every single NPC in the game.

They clearly wouldn't. They already write generic responses for the PC. Since they don't know the PC's personality, they can't inject it through dialogue. Those lines would therefore work just as well for the companions.

 

Similarly, the companions aren't speaking on their own behalf, so there's no reason for their personalities to be expressed at all. When acting as party spokesperson, they're speaking on behalf of the group.

 

There's no need to change how the game is written at all. This is purely a mechanical difference.

The PC is just one more member of the adventuring group.

In games like these, PC is protagonist, main force in the story.

From the point of view of the party members, there is no story. So why should their behaviour be constrained by it?

 

I have yet to see a game where it didn't make perfect sense to allow any party member to speak on behalf of the group. Forcing only the PC to do it, expecially when the PC isn't well-suited to the role, is lunacy.

 

What if my PC has crippling social anxiety? How is he supposed to lead a group or drive conversations? Forcing the PC to be party leader or party spokesman is a gigantic limit on roleplaying freedom.

Edited by Sylvius the Mad

God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I think that's where I stand.

 

I'm used to, and welcome, companions interjecting and possibly providing success through those interjections. But I'm not comfortable with SoZ style picking and choosing who says what to get the maximum benefit. Unless the conversation system becomes Alpha Protocol levels of complex and companions replace stances.

 

Now that would change my mind.

 

You mean like having "Bob, take it from here." as an option, and then he (or whomever) starts talking with no input about what he says, like an on-demand party interjection (or for a better example, the option for Virgil taking over the conversation with the guy you meet when leaving Shrouded Hills in Arcanum)?

 

I can see that working really well, possibly even better than the SoZ-style dialog, especialy since the party is going to be mostly companion NPCs.

I would love the option of sending my companions to talk to people. Say there's some drunk I need to get some information from, I would love the option of sending the bosomy rogue companion to talk to him or to send the big scary fighter to go threaten him. I would have to have proper relationships with the companions and maybe have to deal with the possibility of them not doing exactly as I would like them to do. Maybe don't even let me see the conversation, I just have to take their word for it when they come back and tell me what happened. Would add a very different relationship where you have to earn trust with companions.

 

Or that might work horribly and end up being an awful design. But its interesting to me.

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if that's how it works I won't really be too upset. But I would prefer if that's not the case. I want my party to feel like real people.

Are you not able to perceive your PC as a real person?

 

If you think it would be out of character for a particular companion to speak on behalf of the party, then don't have him do that.

Edited by Sylvius the Mad

God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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I like the idea of companion interjection. I don't want direct control over what my companions say though.

I want direct control over what my party does, and speaking is a thing they do.

 

Internally, I don't mind if they voice dissent or raise concerns or argue, but when dealing with the world the party speaks as one.

if that's how it works I won't really be too upset. But I would prefer if that's not the case. I want my party to feel like real people. I'd honestly rather they just aren't included in conversations with the world than have me control what they say.

So you're fine with controlling how they develop, who they talk to, who they fight, how they fight and when they fight, as well as what objects they pick up, and the clothes they wear - but when it comes to picking what they say, that's suddenly "Too much"?

 

To me, preferably I would be able to pick what they say, in addition to their interjections (where appropriate).

Edited by Luckmann
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