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I was wondering what if you guys think that more/less chartacters would be better, to have control over. Also how deep should the quests involving the characters go? Should a certain character you control have a crital effect of the story line. Like if they dont like you would they turn agianst you and become a sith lord?

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Well, since you are asking... :)

 

Fewer characters would be nice. Add more depth to them. Using Kotor as an example (since you didn't ask specifically about Kotor), it was a minor pain having 8 npcs, of which you would only pick 2 to accompany you most of the time. And these 2 were more often than not picked for combat skills, not for any roleplaying reasons.

 

Personally, I could have lived with a selection of say 4-5 npcs to choose from. Even better if the effort that went into the 8, had been spent on 4 and thereby making them all more interesting than they were, it was just too unevenly split between them.

 

Make problems solvable but other skills than the blaster and melee ones, to make it more attractive having a thief/diplomat, a pilot/mechanic or a scientist/tech type etc. npc in your party. Make deeper relationships between the npcs and the pc. No, that doesn't necessarily mean romances.

 

You could have a droid that hates your gut, but is bound by a restraining bolt, a mercenary who wants a percentage of all profits you make, a jinxed smuggler who needs you to bust him/her out of jail every time you leave a new planet. Plenty of ideas.

 

The point is, if your group is smaller, odds are, that you care more about the fate of each, whether it's like or dislike.

 

Ah well, enough listening to the little voice in my head... :(

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein

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Will exactly all characters be liable to be influenced by the PC? I hope this isn't the case with all of them. I believe some characters should have a mind of their own and resist some, or most, of the PC's influence. I don't think all NPCs should be portrayed as easilly influenced, or gullible.

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I'd like fewer NPCs, there were too many in KOTOR to be of any real impact on the game and as Gorth points out they're more often chosen for combat skills than personality or story. I'd rather have only a few to choose from but that will have a real place in the story and develop in persona not just skill over the course of the game. Something more like the NPC situation of Planescape: Torment rather than the BG games, for a frame of reference.

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Kotor2 will have 10 NPCs, which is a little high, but less than 6 would be too low, imo.

 

If characters can be influenced I hope it works both ways. They become close to the PC and follow your chosen path, or begin to despise your callous actions and leave the party.

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You know, this reminds me of "Devil May Cry".

 

DMC2 put in what fan requested and forgot something, people play games usually dont have a clue of what makes it a good game and their "requests" will screw up the game.

 

Problem in writting NPCs is having then with personality that is belivable, take Virconia for example that have a personaly change only after expecific events and circustances take place. Having her becaming LG because the player is a paladin is a example of stupidity.

 

NPCs sould have their own moral standing and stick by it, the effect player actions in the game world sould not affact their morality except make then being displeased towards the main character and only in certain especial events they sould revaluate their moral standing.

 

Anakin did not fallen into the darkside because he had a all night party with Palpatine ...

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NPCs sould have their own moral standing and stick by it, the effect player actions in the game world sould not affact their morality except make then being displeased towards the main character and only in certain especial events they sould revaluate their moral standing.

I can't argue with that.

 

But Kotor2 as the case in point, apparently certain NPCs idolize your character and are tempted in whatever direction the PC goes because you're exerting a powerful influence on them. If they don't like you much to begin with your ability to affect them is reduced.

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Will exactly all characters be liable to be influenced by the PC? I hope this isn't the case with all of them. I believe some characters should have a mind of their own and resist some, or most, of the PC's influence. I don't think all NPCs should be portrayed as easilly influenced, or gullible.

Some of them are apparently going to go the other way...so if you go Dark Side, some will go light side, or something like that anyway.

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Virtually any power to influence the game (whether it be the narrative, the environments, or the character within) that is put into the player's hands is a good thing. The ability to influence the game (including characters) in a way that does not feel believable or consistent does admittedly harm immersion, but that does not necessarily mean that it does more harm than good.

 

Ultimately, it's about abdication of authorship. It's about setting the stage and then letting the player tell the story that he wants to tell.

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Power is relative, the only thing the player sould have control over is the main character with the game world being influenced by the main character actions, however such influence must be realitic, you sould not turn Tatooine into a water planet because the player wants it.

 

Also its not possible to have "Bink, the Jedi" turn light or dark as the player feels like, not only it would be a dialogue nightmare but also it would look f***ing stupid (yes some morons would like it but then again some people say a Xbox is more powerful that a PC with says a lot about the human race) since we cannot forget we are stuck as Luke in this "story", like it or not we are playing "Final Fantasy, s*** Lords".

 

... I wonder how much FF X-2 is going to cost in early 2005 ...

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I will be happy with 10 as long as we do not have to have all 10 hanging around the Ebon Hawk, and that each and every one has a nice amount of character depth.

 

Preferably each is useful throughout the game, though not in the same capacity.

 

 

TripleRRR

Using a gamepad to control an FPS is like trying to fight evil through maple syrup.

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I think that 10 is a good number. There are a few things that I would like though:

 

1) We should have the option to kick NPCs out of the party or kill them. If the game is allowing both a dark and light path, there will probably need to be some NPCs on both sides, and it would be nice to have the option of opposing those we disagree with, rather than inviting them into our party. If the character is really absolutely necessary to the plot, they could maybe flee if attacked and show up later as a non-party NPC, but it would be better to avoid this by writing a plot that can handle the NPC death without being totally messed up.

 

2) Avoid killing party NPCs with "plot damage" (for example: killing them off in cutscenes, or other situations that are totally outside of the player's control). Having a particular enemy attack a particular NPC first in combat would be OK. To go along with this, I'm assuming that the NPC "death" system will work similarly to in KotOR, where NPCs don't actually die. I think it would be interesting if they added a "death blow" action that enemies could perform, which would kill an unconscious character for real, but most enemies would only do it if there were no active characters to threaten them. This would mean that if you send a character into combat alone, or if you run away after they've been knocked out, the enemies might actually kill them, but normally you don't have to worry about party members dying from an unlucky critical hit or something. There could then be particular enemies who are scripted to attempt killing blows against particular NPCs even if there are other party members still up and fighting. I think this would be a much better alternative to a "cinematic killing" in a cutscene. As noted in point 1, this would require that the plot is written to allow for the possibility that an NPC might or might not die.

 

3) There should be more opportunities in the game for non-combat oriented characters to be useful. If the game is very combat oriented, people will tend to choose which characters to take with them based on combat ability rather than personality. If there is a better balance of ways to accomplish goals, then non-combat NPCs are a more viable option.

 

-Kasoroth

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10 Party joinable NPCs sounds like too much to do but we'll see, even KotOR really had maybe 5 that were written completely IMO.

I think it's good to have a decent sized group to show some diversity though, even just to show that some characters are more interesting/unique in the game world than others. Not at the expense of fewer well and completely written "main" NPCs though.

 

Party NPC death would be a bit of a problem I think, playing other games I would usually just reload as a convenience if that happened. I think it could be interesting but it works fine the way it is, it worked okay with BGII where you had 6 party members and morale variables to show some reaction from NPCs but you could also readily ressurect them afterward (if you've won the battle and they didn't get chunked or something). If death was going to be put in however it would be interesting just to see some reaction from party members.

Being able to dump and fight/kill/argue with some of them would be nice too, have some dialogues with a few options which could lead to some fights later perhaps.

Being able to do things like that in the BGs when you met a new NPC was quite entertaining, the scuffles and killing between party members were too, a bit disrupting though :unsure:

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