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[Wisdom]Using this dialogue option is a better choice.


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If you understand both the definition of the word AND the mechanics of the skill there is no ambiguity - there is a dialoge statement and there is an option to choose one of two different mechanics to utilize when choosing to use the statement - either one will work as it is intended - you get to choose which one - what is ambiguos about that?

 

That you're using two things (bluff and intimidate) to express intimidation. Having one thing represented by two things is pretty much a textbook example of ambiguity.

 

Lets look a little closer at what is happening with a typical example "give me that necklace or I'll gut you like a fish". Clearly the intent is to [intimidate] the NPC into giving the necklace over. Clear and straightforward use of the skill.

 

Now lets look at the example as used as a [bluff]. A [bluff] is a deception; a way for the PC to make the NPC believe something that the PC wants the NPC to believe. A typical bluff might be pretending you're royalty to some rabble as a way to get them to go along with your plan ([bluff]"Hello, I am a Nigerian Prince...") Unless you're stating something outside of the realm of believability - [bluff]"I am secretly a blue-bottomed hummingbird transformed into a human form - lead me to your nectar!" which should just make you look Tiax-like crazy - the bluff should have a chance to succeed. In essence the NPCs can believe the PCs story.

 

So why would a [bluff] of an [intimidation] work? The only reason it can work is that the NPCs can reasonably believe in, and be intimidated by, the PC's ability to back up an intimidation. So really what the NPCs have to do is pass an [intimidation] check so that the [bluff] is believable - except if the [intimidation] is passed there's no need for the [bluff]. Ergo [intimidation] is the correct skill to use, as I see it.

Edited by Amentep
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I am in favor of no tags while still having your skills influence the amount of dialogue options and actions. If you have a high wisdom score one or two additional dialogue lines are added to the standard selection. If you are also intelligent add another 1 or 2 options to the conversaton tree.That way you dont immediately see what the game (devs) think would be a wise response but instead choose your answer depending on what comes closest to something you would say in a particular situation.

 

In short: No tags, just let the additional dialogue options appear without clearly indicating them.

 

Of course, there are skills where it is a bit more tricky to do without tags, like bluffing and lying, but stuff like intimidation and seduction should be fairly obvious without the need for tags.

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I'm not quite sure why it is always focused on the dialogue options. I think it would be more interesting or fitting if you have tags for kind of intention/behavior and your stats would influence the quality of the answer you get.

If you're very intelligent you may get more detailed information about the things they tell you about, if you're very charismatic they may be inclined to tell you more personal things, if your very perceptive you might see sth. in their body language, if you're very strong you're intimidation is more effective and more likely to be true or on the other hand just sth you may want to hear even if it's false because they tell you everything so you just let them go etc.

Let your stats decide about the kind and quality of information you get not the way you ask and by that keep it from being a simple "if i concentrate on talent x I always get the dialoge option x which decides if I am mean or nice but ends in a sure win for me".

I think it would make dialoge more interesting, give incentive to roleplay and let the writers be more free in their creativity.

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is not a good example. In the real world, sure, a 100lb kid ain't going to frighten anyone, but in a world with magic that 100lb kid may actually be able to rip your arms off- and being a wizard capable of doing that is potentially something you could bluff. If I claim to be The Great Zappo who will rip your arms off (with the power of my mind) then the 'intimidation' aspect is dependent on bluffing the identity.

 

Isn't your example really two checks, though? The [bluff] to believe I'm the Great Zappo and then the [intimidate] of arm ripping?

Hmm, problem is that that requires- presumably- two skill checks rather than one which makes it fundamentally more difficult than any single check, and to most purposes you should be using the non existent "Zappo's" intimidate rather than your own. Using an "intimidation" option requires that you both convince the target that you're capable of doing the violence and convincing the target that you're capable of doing the violence, in effect bluffing an identity is the same and not twice as difficult.

 

Dunno really, I'm not particularly happy with the D&D diplomacy/ bluff/ intimidate system on a fundamental level anyway.

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Personally, I'm not a fan of ability scores determining non-combat options when we will have non combat skills specifically designed to deal with such situations. Abilities might add +'s or -'s to the chance for success, but shouldn't be a mechanism in and of themselves...defeats the purpose of the system.

 

Also, I have been thinking about the implications of the dual skill system and in light of this and I think that, as others like Eskarion above have implied, the tags would likely be part of the entire non-combat world interaction process. So while people seem to be getting hung up on conversational intent, there is another factor of insight that may be the product of skill based knowledge. In a system like this it seems like a bit of an odd disconnect to know what your skills and feats are doing precisely in combat while not knowing in non-combat. It also seems strange that in a converstaion, tags would show up for certain conversation types (lore, smithing, etc.) but not others (intimidate, lie, etc.). I guess I just want to be certain that the intent behind my PC's actions as described by the designers matches the intent I have; both in combat and out of combat.

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If you understand both the definition of the word AND the mechanics of the skill there is no ambiguity - there is a dialoge statement and there is an option to choose one of two different mechanics to utilize when choosing to use the statement - either one will work as it is intended - you get to choose which one - what is ambiguos about that?

 

That you're using two things (bluff and intimidate) to express intimidation. Having one thing represented by two things is pretty much a textbook example of ambiguity.

 

Lets look a little closer at what is happening with a typical example "give me that necklace or I'll gut you like a fish". Clearly the intent is to [intimidate] the NPC into giving the necklace over. Clear and straightforward use of the skill.

 

Now lets look at the example as used as a [bluff]. A [bluff] is a deception; a way for the PC to make the NPC believe something that the PC wants the NPC to believe. A typical bluff might be pretending you're royalty to some rabble as a way to get them to go along with your plan ([bluff]"Hello, I am a Nigerian Prince...") Unless you're stating something outside of the realm of believability - [bluff]"I am secretly a blue-bottomed hummingbird transformed into a human form - lead me to your nectar!" which should just make you look Tiax-like crazy - the bluff should have a chance to succeed. In essence the NPCs can believe the PCs story.

 

So why would a [bluff] of an [intimidation] work? The only reason it can work is that the NPCs can reasonably believe in, and be intimidated by, the PC's ability to back up an intimidation. So really what the NPCs have to do is pass an [intimidation] check so that the [bluff] is believable - except if the [intimidation] is passed there's no need for the [bluff]. Ergo [intimidation] is the correct skill to use, as I see it.

 

I don't know how else to explain it to you - the first definition I came across with a google search ironically defines a bluff with the phrase " to intimidate with false pretenses " (as opposed to actually intimidating) but you want to justy dismiss that out of hand

 

Furthermore it's not a matter of which skill is correct to use it's a matter of which skills the game offers you to use - if it offers both and you don't agree that a bluff is possible then don't choose it but just becuase you can't understand the concept of why a bluff would/should be offered as an option doesn't make it wrong for the developer to do so.

 

How about this - if its intimidate it's like having Arnold Shwartznegger right in your face saying I'll just kill you - if it's a bluff it's Johhny Depp.

 

And by the way there is no guarantee either one will give you the result you hope for - it all depends on how the mechanics and the target are set up vs your own stats/skill levels - thats why they build dialoge type mechanics in the first place to give you tools to use to effect the outcome in other ways other than a simple multiple choice with completely static responses.

 

I doubt that works for you either so I guess we will just have to agree to disagree.

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How about this - if its intimidate it's like having Arnold Shwartznegger right in your face saying I'll just kill you - if it's a bluff it's Johhny Depp.

 

Hm, I see it like this: A bluff is something you say you'll do but you don't actually follow through with it when called on it. In order to have the bluff work at all, in this case "intimidation", you need to have the stature, menacing aura, etc. to be able to pull it off. You can't bluff if it isn't at least somehow backed up by some supporting circumstances. Of course, then you cold just replace "bluff" with "lie" and have something like: [Truth] I am gonna kill you and [Lie] I am gonna kill you. Not sure which game used this, but that's how it was done already. Worked fine imo although I would have preferred [Truth] [bluff].

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Okay, I think there are two discussions going on. People arguing for/against skill tags, and those for/against dialog tags.

 

I'm ambivilant about skill tags. I don't think they're necessary, but they don't really bug me.

 

I'm definitely for dialog tags if the dev's wish to use them. I want the writers to have every creative tool at their disposal. I don't want a really cool idea that can't be animated well removed from the game because people don't want anything in the dialog box but spoken text.

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You can't bluff if it isn't at least somehow backed up by some supporting circumstances.

 

I know a guy who once made 9 other guys back down from him using an all-out bluff. It's all about passion and delivery. The "circumstances" necessary to get the result you want MAY exist, or they could be part of the bluff, a complete fabrication that only exists in the minds of those you intend to manipulate. Smoke and mirrors, my friends.

 

Here's a good example of intimidation in film.

 

http://www.youtube.c...ed/co5xVHsMRV0

 

Now watch it again, and make the assumption he's out of bullets. Still damn convincing, huh?

Edited by BetrayTheWorld
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How about this - if its intimidate it's like having Arnold Shwartznegger right in your face saying I'll just kill you - if it's a bluff it's Johhny Depp.

 

Hm, I see it like this: A bluff is something you say you'll do but you don't actually follow through with it when called on it. In order to have the bluff work at all, in this case "intimidation", you need to have the stature, menacing aura, etc. to be able to pull it off. You can't bluff if it isn't at least somehow backed up by some supporting circumstances. Of course, then you cold just replace "bluff" with "lie" and have something like: [Truth] I am gonna kill you and [Lie] I am gonna kill you. Not sure which game used this, but that's how it was done already. Worked fine imo although I would have preferred [Truth] [bluff].

 

For me it's all very simple

 

I just don't have any issue with a line of intimidating dialoge having an option for a character to use a bluff skill - one would hope the mechanics of the skill are sufficiently designed to be a viable gameplay mechanic and that the target of the conversation would have the sort of stats and build to provide an appropriate amount of difficulty for the bluff to succeed or fail depending on the gameplay situation.

 

To me the concept that an intimidating line should NEVER offer a character the opportunity to bluff becuase that somehow degrades the intimidation skill or is (gasp) ambiguos is just silly.

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You can't bluff if it isn't at least somehow backed up by some supporting circumstances.

 

I know a guy who once made 9 other guys back down from him using an all-out bluff. It's all about passion and delivery. The "circumstances" necessary to get the result you want MAY exist, or they could be part of the bluff, a complete fabrication that only exists in the minds of those you intend to manipulate. Smoke and mirrors, my friends.

 

Here's a good example of intimidation in film.

 

http://www.youtube.c...ed/co5xVHsMRV0

 

Now watch it again, and make the assumption he's out of bullets. Still damn convincing, huh?

 

You guys know you are arguing something totally off topic now right ;p? That being said, I don't agree but nice post.

 

Here is the ultimate difference between intimidate and bluff for in game purposes -

 

Bluff is just a really big lie. You either won't do, or are not capable of doing what you say.

 

Intimidate is not a lie. You will do what you say, and you ARE capable of doing it.

 

Example: Bluff - "Hrmmm, what a bore. You know I am mates with your captain right? Unless you want latrine duty for a week step aside!" Bluff Check fails and NPC responds "Stow it you blowhard! Show me your papers or you aren't crossing the border!" Conversation ends.

 

Example: Intimidate - "I have had about enough of you Guard, unless you move out of my way I will move you myself!" Intimidate Check fails and NPC responds "Stow it you blowhard! Show me your papers or you aren't crossing the border!" Player responds "Wrong choice." Game pauses as combat begins.

 

Do you see the difference now?

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You can't bluff if it isn't at least somehow backed up by some supporting circumstances.

 

I know a guy who once made 9 other guys back down from him using an all-out bluff. It's all about passion and delivery. The "circumstances" necessary to get the result you want MAY exist, or they could be part of the bluff, a complete fabrication that only exists in the minds of those you intend to manipulate. Smoke and mirrors, my friends.

 

Here's a good example of intimidation in film.

 

http://www.youtube.c...ed/co5xVHsMRV0

 

Now watch it again, and make the assumption he's out of bullets. Still damn convincing, huh?

 

You guys know you are arguing something totally off topic now right ;p? That being said, I don't agree but nice post.

 

Here is the ultimate difference between intimidate and bluff for in game purposes -

 

Bluff is just a really big lie. You either won't do, or are not capable of doing what you say.

 

Intimidate is not a lie. You will do what you say, and you ARE capable of doing it.

 

Example: Bluff - "Hrmmm, what a bore. You know I am mates with your captain right? Unless you want latrine duty for a week step aside!" Bluff Check fails and NPC responds "Stow it you blowhard! Show me your papers or you aren't crossing the border!" Conversation ends.

 

Example: Intimidate - "I have had about enough of you Guard, unless you move out of my way I will move you myself!" Intimidate Check fails and NPC responds "Stow it you blowhard! Show me your papers or you aren't crossing the border!" Player responds "Wrong choice." Game pauses as combat begins.

 

Do you see the difference now?

 

I can see either line using the bluff option (if it was offered) - the premise that started this debate is that a bluff option should NEVER be applied to an intimidating statement - in fact both of those lines are intimidating so where would you draw that invisible line that one is never supposed to cross?

 

Is a character skilled in deception somehow unable to carry out any deception that infers he might cause someone pain just becuase it might be more common for some burly warrior type to intimidate in this manner?

 

Edit: as for straying off topic I agree - the only saving grace for this tangent is that it supports the premise of using tags when skills are attached to a dialoge so the player knows which options use which skills in order to make his roleplaying decision :yes:

Edited by wanderon

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I am in favour of PS:Ts system. There is no indicator showing which option is the one that wins the argument, but it shows the intentions of your character.

 

Having "bluff", "truth", "lie", "joke" there is a necessity. How would the game discern whether or not you were genuine in your threat? How would YOU know whetrher or not the threatening dialogue you chose would end up in you attacking the person, when you just intended to bluff?

 

No, it's foolish to have no intention tags. It's not being "hand held" or being given a "silver platter" as many elitists like to call everything that isn't convoluted. It's just good game design.

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Having <...> "joke" there is a necessity

Must be very ****ty joke.

 

No, it's foolish to have no intention tags. It's not being "hand held" or being given a "silver platter" as many elitists like to call everything

If you want to argue with "elitists", you may want to at least read the OP post, because you're barking at a wall.

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You know, BG does not have skill tags on account of having no skills to use in a dialogue. And as far as I remember dialogue in both of the BG games was a fine example of Bioware's "six choices, one outcome" school of game design. Anybody remembers Gaider's famous exponential quote?

 

Maybe I've modded the game too much in the past. Even so, BG2 does a great job of giving you the illusion of choice with its 10+ options at times. And granted, it's possible to have more than one outcome for certain dialogue.

I made a 2 hour rant video about dragon age 2. It's not the greatest... but if you want to watch it, here ya go:

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Is a character skilled in deception somehow unable to carry out any deception that infers he might cause someone pain just becuase it might be more common for some burly warrior type to intimidate in this manner?

Okay since you don't seem to "get it" I will put in the most blunt way I can.

 

Example: Bluff - "Errr I have had enough of you guard.... Move aside or.... I will knock you aside myself!" Bluff fails Guard says "Sure you will." Conversation ends.

 

Example: Intimidate - "I am going to count to 5. If I get to 3 and you are still there you will cease to be when I get to 5. Understand?" Intimidate fails Guard says "Just try it and see where it gets you." You reply "It gets me standing over your corpse." games pauses as combat begins.

 

Do you see the difference between a bluff and an intimidate now?

 

A bluff is a bluff, you are lying, you aren't going to do what you say you are going to do. An intimidate is not a lie. You REALLY ARE going to attack the guard if he doesn't walk away.

Edited by Karkarov
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Is a character skilled in deception somehow unable to carry out any deception that infers he might cause someone pain just becuase it might be more common for some burly warrior type to intimidate in this manner?

Okay since you don't seem to "get it" I will put in the most blunt way I can.

 

Example: Bluff - "Errr I have had enough of you guard.... Move aside or.... I will knock you aside myself!" Bluff fails Guard says "Sure you will." Conversation ends.

 

Example: Intimidate - "I am going to count to 5. If I get to 3 and you are still there you will cease to be when I get to 5. Understand?" Intimidate fails Guard says "Just try it and see where it gets you." You reply "It gets me standing over your corpse." games pauses as combat begins.

 

Do you see the difference between a bluff and an intimidate now?

 

A bluff is a bluff, you are lying, you aren't going to do what you say you are going to do. An intimidate is not a lie. You REALLY ARE going to attack the guard if he doesn't walk away.

 

And becuase you are lying you can't possibly be effective enough to convince some half-wit guard that he might be in real danger from you if he doesn't just let you pass?? What sort of nonsense is this?

 

Keep in mind we are talking about a SKILL being used to accomplish this and the fact that the character has invested points in the skill means he just might be really good at decieving people through dedicated training in his craft so I'm just not seeing where the dip**** dialoge you have posted for this skilled rogue is coming from other than thin air or other nether regions.

 

If thats all you've got then I'll just agree to disagree thank you very much...

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Guys, I think you are both right. If you are good at bluffing there is of course a good chance that you will convince the guard that you intend to shove him aside should he refuse to let you pass. You just won't do it if your bluff skill check fails. You just used a bluff in an intimidating way.

 

Intimidation on the other hand, when it is clearly not meant as a bluff, will either make the guard step aside or make your PC push him away if the intimidation skill check fails.

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I'll give you two options, you can decide which is bluff and which is intimidate.

Get back on topic or I swear I will have this thread locked!

By all means, continue derailing this thread, when it is locked, it's not going to be me who is banned.

 

(I don't actually mind you guys going off-topic, since it's still related to the topic)

Anyway, I think it is obvious enough to recognise which is which without needing tags, don't you?

Remember: Argue the point, not the person. Remain polite and constructive. Friendly forums have friendly debate. There's no shame in being wrong. If you don't have something to add, don't post for the sake of it. And don't be afraid to post thoughts you are uncertain about, that's what discussion is for.
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No doubt this post will be picked apart but let me put my oar in! :p

 

I think the real problem isn't that the tags make the game easier, it's that choices given to you by skills and stats are usually 'I win' choices instead! I don't think there is actually any 'skill' involved in trying to pick the 'right' option without tags, it's taking the right approach. Let me explain: if your character has an high IQ then he gets a high intelligence response. The issue isn't whether it is tagged or not as INT but whether or not it's an 'I win' button because of it. It should not automatically let you win the conversation, it should just give you an extra response that may or may not be helpful to the conversation. Yes, it might get your character's 'point' across better, but if he's talking to a bunch of street thugs their response might actually be negative, as they may have 'issues' with 'smart people'.

 

Likewise, skills shouldn't be 'I win' buttons either: trying to intimidate someone who freaks out and attacks people whenever they feel threatened for instance should be bad, there are people in real life who when threatened go off the handle even when they know they have no chance, and others who detest being manipulated or can tell when people are lying. You're no doubt thinking that this makes the skills and attribute choices irrelevant, but that's not the case: they give you extra options that can be useful in the right situation! You may also get skills that instead of giving you options, instead let you assess how they will be taken by the subject, as suggest by Avellone in one of his interviews recently. I think dialogue shouldn't be about guessing which dialogue choice 'is the right one to use a skill' but rather learning your target and how they will respond to things.

 

As to the bluff issue, I see no issue with bluff being used in such situations as to try to convince someone you're going to hurt them when you really won't, though I may suggest requiring both skills in order to do so. This is the problem with splitting up bluff, diplomacy and intimidate into separate skills, as all three really need the use of the other two to really be good at them. I'm not suggesting having just one social skill but rather that the skills should be split up along other lines maybe? Another approach would be to allow all three skills to be used in most situations like they would be, but then have the side effects differ: a bluffer will be playing with a House of Cards as the moment someone picks up that he's lying then everything can come crashing down, while an intimidater gets what he wants but the people he deals with end up hating his guts and a diplomat gets everyone happy but only by compromising on things. Of course, this is just random musings on my part, take from it what you will.

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I'll give you two options, you can decide which is bluff and which is intimidate.

Get back on topic or I swear I will have this thread locked!

By all means, continue derailing this thread, when it is locked, it's not going to be me who is banned.

 

(I don't actually mind you guys going off-topic, since it's still related to the topic)

Anyway, I think it is obvious enough to recognise which is which without needing tags, don't you?

 

Both can be intimidate. Intimidation doesn't require you to be all shouty and angry, on the contrary, the best intimidation is when you present it calmly, with others around them perhaps not even picking up on the fact that you have just threatened their friend, perhaps even making them think you're actually being really friendly! Bluffing can be done easily by pretending to be all angry and flustered but also calmly if the person is good at it. So both can be both in short.

Edited by FlintlockJazz
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I think the real problem isn't that the tags make the game easier, it's that choices given to you by skills and stats are usually 'I win' choices instead! I don't think there is actually any 'skill' involved in trying to pick the 'right' option without tags, it's taking the right approach. Let me explain: if your character has an high IQ then he gets a high intelligence response. The issue isn't whether it is tagged or not as INT but whether or not it's an 'I win' button because of it. It should not automatically let you win the conversation, it should just give you an extra response that may or may not be helpful to the conversation. Yes, it might get your character's 'point' across better, but if he's talking to a bunch of street thugs their response might actually be negative, as they may have 'issues' with 'smart people'.

 

Likewise, skills shouldn't be 'I win' buttons either: trying to intimidate someone who freaks out and attacks people whenever they feel threatened for instance should be bad, there are people in real life who when threatened go off the handle even when they know they have no chance, and others who detest being manipulated or can tell when people are lying. You're no doubt thinking that this makes the skills and attribute choices irrelevant, but that's not the case: they give you extra options that can be useful in the right situation! You may also get skills that instead of giving you options, instead let you assess how they will be taken by the subject, as suggest by Avellone in one of his interviews recently. I think dialogue shouldn't be about guessing which dialogue choice 'is the right one to use a skill' but rather learning your target and how they will respond to things.

 

As to the bluff issue, I see no issue with bluff being used in such situations as to try to convince someone you're going to hurt them when you really won't, though I may suggest requiring both skills in order to do so. This is the problem with splitting up bluff, diplomacy and intimidate into separate skills, as all three really need the use of the other two to really be good at them. I'm not suggesting having just one social skill but rather that the skills should be split up along other lines maybe? Another approach would be to allow all three skills to be used in most situations like they would be, but then have the side effects differ: a bluffer will be playing with a House of Cards as the moment someone picks up that he's lying then everything can come crashing down, while an intimidater gets what he wants but the people he deals with end up hating his guts and a diplomat gets everyone happy but only by compromising on things. Of course, this is just random musings on my part, take from it what you will.

I think if you are wise enough, smart enough and have enough in intimidate or bluff, you should get these options, and they might even be insta-win (though I prefer that that isn't an assumption you can make)

But by not seeing any tags, you role-play your decision. You feel this option is better? good, go for it. but do it because it is your own decision, not because meta-game information told you it was a special option. The options would still be available if you met the prerequisites, and if you have a little reading comprehension you'll figure out how it sounds. But you won't be tempted away from using different dialogue, because you know it's a "special" option.

I'll give you two options, you can decide which is bluff and which is intimidate.

Get back on topic or I swear I will have this thread locked!

By all means, continue derailing this thread, when it is locked, it's not going to be me who is banned.

 

(I don't actually mind you guys going off-topic, since it's still related to the topic)

Anyway, I think it is obvious enough to recognise which is which without needing tags, don't you?

 

Both can be intimidate. Intimidation doesn't require you to be all shouty and angry, on the contrary, the best intimidation is when you present it calmly, with others around them perhaps not even picking up on the fact that you have just threatened their friend, perhaps even making them think you're actually being really friendly! Bluffing can be done easily by pretending to be all angry and flustered but also calmly if the person is good at it. So both can be both in short.

But you knew which option was which. so clearly it can be made apparent without tags.

Remember: Argue the point, not the person. Remain polite and constructive. Friendly forums have friendly debate. There's no shame in being wrong. If you don't have something to add, don't post for the sake of it. And don't be afraid to post thoughts you are uncertain about, that's what discussion is for.
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I think if you are wise enough, smart enough and have enough in intimidate or bluff, you should get these options, and they might even be insta-win (though I prefer that that isn't an assumption you can make)

But by not seeing any tags, you role-play your decision. You feel this option is better? good, go for it. but do it because it is your own decision, not because meta-game information told you it was a special option. The options would still be available if you met the prerequisites, and if you have a little reading comprehension you'll figure out how it sounds. But you won't be tempted away from using different dialogue, because you know it's a "special" option.

 

Why would you go for it just because it had tags? If it's not an 'I win' button any more then you have to think if it will work here, and if you are trying to avoid your character from coming across that way then knowing what your character would consider a smart answer is important, especially if you are playing a character very different to your own personality, plus guessing what the writer intended with a dialogue option is often as haphazard as 'guess the logic' issues you had in many adventure games of old, where what seemed obvious to the designer isn't obvious to the player, and that is not 'skill' or 'roleplaying' since you're just trying to work out where the designer was going with that. If you think that maybe some characters wouldn't know when they are talking smugly or not then you may have a point, in which case the tags could be shown or hidden depending on what social skills the character has invested in, allowing the player to create a character that knows how to alter his speech and present himself as different things.

 

But you knew which option was which. so clearly it can be made apparent without tags.

 

Actually I didn't and I never said I did, I felt both of them were more intimidatory than lying. It only works in most games because most games don't have the subtlety of writing to go with dialogue that has double meanings. Take most Bioware games: you know when a character is stating something that it is 'the truth' because their writers assume their players are too dumb to not have it spelt out for them.

"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

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When used for skill checks tags have had different implementations. Originally they just indicated the skill you were trying to use to attempt to achieve different results in a conversation. They didn't garauntee the success of the use of that skill. The options usually led to a better outcome if the skill roll succeeded, but often contained penalties if you failed (such as combat or losing access to a shop or quests through the npc). This is fine, in my opinion, because there is risk involved. It's like disarming a trap. Succeeding the disarm lets you access a treasure, failing causes the trap to go off. If you're not skilled at disarming traps, the best option is to just leave it alone. Similarly, someone who's not skilled at bluffing probably shouldn't attempt it. They can still try and sometimes get lucky, but they're more likely to fail and negatively impact their relationship with the npc.

 

This changes in games which have a static skill requirement to access the dialog. If you can only see or choose the bluff option if you have a high enough skill, then there is no risk involved so it should not be the most rewarding option 100% of the time.

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In BG and IWD had full descriptions of the responses and you've seen what you want to say. Even when very many options, you can make your choice, without hints of your PC. And it is really interesting to see the result of your response.

In the ME short answers, so they represent the colors. A good option for lazy and for those who don't like to read =)

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