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Main Character Dies... Game over or...?

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So does the game end or can we continue to treck on in the world?

 

This could go in the category of "Narrative Second Wind" but wanted its own topic.

 

What I am suggesting is that the main characters role is rather slim and it is the party's role that is overcome objects. Not only does this add more intensity to a solo play, but I think it might create some pretty interesting plots. And hey, if you die with your character on a solo play that's pretty much that anyways.

 

Basically, your main character dies, and you can continue the game with the party that you have (No Gameover). With the Adventurer's Hall, some might say "That's abuseable!" but if hiring companions at the Hall actually costs gold (and more gold for higher levels) you wouldn't be able to do it over and over and over again (too much).

 

Story-wise, one player loses his main character early game, another mid-game and someone late-game. Most people probably don't. But for those who enjoy experiencing a story (in a game) it could be a twist to the player story and adds for lots of replayability. This would mean that other party members could act as the "Front figure". Taking over the "Choice" mechanic basically.

 

However, if one of your characters has a high reputation and dies your average party reputation should lessen (which is another question)

 

Individual reputation?

E.g., Forton has 4 Reputation, Cadegund has 3 Reputation, some Party Math Stuff makes some average rounded down to 3 Party Reputation.

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The scene flashes forward to your funerary rites. Your friends and companions are standing around your grave. Each, in turn, presents a eulogy in their own inimitable way; on the whole it is a sad, moving experience. Finally they wander off. You try to move your character, to cast a spell or sing a song, but nothing happens. Gradually the light fades into the evening twilight. A gloomy storm rolls in and the rain beings to fall. It grows every darker as night falls and the precipitation grows heavy.

 

The seasons pass. Occasionally one of your friends drop by to leave some flowers and say a few words. But this happens less and less frequently. Spring turns to summer, then comes fall. The leaves from the towering oak gently fall onto your grave. Finally, your lingering soul loses its grip upon the mortal realm and returns at last to the great wheel.

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"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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If your character dies, your game should blow up in your DVD tray so you can never again play it. Now that's hardcore RPGing.

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"Console exclusive is such a harsh word." - Darque

"Console exclusive is two words Darque." - Nartwak (in response to Darque's observation)

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If its the 'party' not the main character there is no point in having a main character in the first place, at which point we're talking JRPG territory. Also once the main char doesn't matter, the less impact you get to have in general or attachment to a character you have. From what they've said some 'event' occurs you happen to be by and a lot of the main story revolves around whatever that is and it's ultimately how and why your involved with any of it.

 

Basically, the only kind of event I could see where you could 'die' and come back would be a PST style and its due to this event. Something about your soul constantly reviving you or some such is about the only thing I can see happening and I doubt they'll even do that due to all there other hard modes where death is death and all that.

 

Either way removing your main character as some method to try and make the game more detailed aint gonna work. It just removes any attachment or your making another JRPG and that's not much of an RPG.


Def Con: kills owls dead

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-snip-

So, what you want is for the protagonist to not be important in his/her own story? Unless the death has some plot relevance, having the protagonist's random death not end the story(in a very story focused game, not Super Mario) and/or game is kind of bad. You know, it makes the entire plot following a person until that person died by something random kind of dumb and null.

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Well,it could be if your protagonist was dead, but you got other companions still breathing,the game will not be over, just use your companions who got resurrect skill to revive your character, or just grab your protagonist's body to the nearest temple (what? you mean how? just call a taxi, I mean, a cart or whatever, for a fee. Or make a item like strectcher which would be useful, when you got someone down...)

Or you can make the dead protagonist's soul following your party(may give you some situation in some case...), until you got someone can revive him/her.


I have struggle to understand a Universe that allows the destruction of an entire planet. Which will win this endless conflict - destruction or creation? The only thing I know for certain is never to place your faith entirely on one side. Play the middle if you want to survive.

 

Everyone else is a fanatic. I am Gauldoth Half-Dead. Your savior.

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things that simply force a reload are bad, mmkay?

 

If you're playing Ironman mode the most common route would probably be playing a wizard and staying out of the fray.

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The devs have stated that there will be no resurrection magic, and that the story will be centered around the main character who survives a tragic supernatural event. IOW, if the main character dies, game over.

 

They've also stated that the main character -- or indeed any party member -- won't die in combat at normal difficulty. Instead, they'll be "maimed" if health hits zero, which is presumably a Bad Thing (due to the low availability of healing magic). Presumably only if the entire party is knocked out will it be game over.

 

As far as I've gathered, the consequences of less than complete success in combat are something like:

 

If the party wins the encounter anyway (last one standing is a party member):

  • Stamina 0, health > 0: knocked out, recovery with no ill effects.
  • Health ≤ 0:

  • Normal difficulty: maimed. Not good. I would expect that there's some way to heal but it's not going to be easy.


  • Expert mode: killed. Party member removed from the game. If it's the main character, game over.

 

If the party loses (everybody knocked out/maimed/killed), I would expect that it's game over.

 

In Trial of Iron mode, it's game really over, as you can't backtrack to a previous save. Start a new one and try again.

 

I for one will probably start with normal (or easier, depending) difficulty and Trial of Iron, to stop myself from abusing savegames.


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Chrono Trigger does it well.

 

Main Character dies, you could opt to complete the story without him and you'll get an entirely different ending sequence.

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I loved what they did in Quest for Glory V, where when you died they would have a little epilogue with a morbidly funny rhyme or poem which was most of the time relevant to the way you died

 


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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Pet threads, everyone has them. I love imagining Gods, Monsters, Factions and Weapons.

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Let me rephrase, main character is super important. But at some point in the game the party is going to be sucked into the whole mess of the story, and they are going to be equally important. Of course, you can just kick them out whenever (mechanically) but roleplayingly the party is part of the story at some point in the game. They aren't just followers but interacting with the story, reacting to events that happens and taking part of the events.

 

If the main character dies, why wouldn't I be able to continue on the story? Forton died, but I can still continue the game. Why is the main character and Forton different in this case? Obvious answer is "Because Forton isn't the main character". I'm looking for some "common sense" in some sort of form...

 

What is the reason that makes the party unable to finish the main plot without the main character, when they've been dragged into the whole mess? Let's say there is 6 Chapters in P:E, I've had a full party since Chapter 2, and have kept them around ever since, at Chapter 4 or 5 the party is dragged into the mess to be part of the story and not just some side-kicks that follow around.

 

There was also some discussion on "Party members acting as front figures" meaning that, if that is implemented, would mean that the party could carry the story forward. On Ironman mode, if your character die on your and if the Adventurer's Hall costs money to hire companions you still won't be able to abuse it. Lose a character, pay gold, lose a character, pay gold. Eventually you'll run out of gold <- that would happen regardless when or if you lose one of your side-kick companion.

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Don't know about P.E., but often the reason is that the main character has some ability/abilities (they're half-gods! only person in the world who has enough Soul to channel enough power!) that make defeating the baddies possible or something....so the party could continue to rebel but wouldn't succeed. :p

 

Of course, if one isn't going the cliched end of the world/savior route, with the enemy being a bit more mundane and you have the fantasy equivalent of Robin Hood or local war instead, then I think it's entirely plausible that party members would continue the "good fight" even if a leader dies. So logically, there's nothing against the concept.

 

Narrative wise and gameplay wise however, I think I'd tend to agree that it would essentially mean a game that has no serious sense of character focus. No one is "special", no one has more story-focus in terms of the main plot, etc. because you have to make sure none of them are vital to have. Less sense of a possibility of failure because you just keep picking up more characters and keep on truckin'. You'd likely end up with a game that feels less personal and involved (mostly combat with cursory chr. side quests) and probably less satisfying because of it, to many RPG'ers. Something more like the much more heavily combat oriented Might and Magic rpg series perhaps (which I loved, and does have a main "goal" arc, but individual characterization isn't there imo....).

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“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts

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Imagine if Luke died half-way through The Empire Strikes Back (Yoda finally got sick and tired of his whinging and choked his *&$#@ ass) and the movies just carried on ...

Edited by nikolokolus

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Imagine if Luke died half-way through The Empire Strikes Back (Yoda finally got sick and tired of his whinging and choked his *&$#@ ass) and the movies just carried on ...

 

There's no question that the initial protagonist being alive until the big resolution is a good thing.

 

Getting there in a CRPG is another thing though. Should your character die (and there's not a small chance of that) there are two options:

 

- force a reload

 

- force a restart (in Trial of Iron)

 

obviously both are p. anti-climactic. The first is simply a nuisance. The latter punishes you quite harshly for something that might even have been proper tactics (like moving your character into harm's way). In this case you'll be mostly concerned with keeping your character away from danger at all times.

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Let me rephrase, main character is super important. But at some point in the game the party is going to be sucked into the whole mess of the story, and they are going to be equally important. Of course, you can just kick them out whenever (mechanically) but roleplayingly the party is part of the story at some point in the game. They aren't just followers but interacting with the story, reacting to events that happens and taking part of the events.

 

If the main character dies, why wouldn't I be able to continue on the story? Forton died, but I can still continue the game. Why is the main character and Forton different in this case? Obvious answer is "Because Forton isn't the main character". I'm looking for some "common sense" in some sort of form...

 

"Because he isn't the main character" is common sense... You say that roleplaying the entire party is part of the story, but I disagree. The purpose of a game like this is to play the role of a single character. The control that you get over the other party members is a necessity due to the desire to have involving tactical combat, which requires a high degree of control due in part to AI limitations and in part because there's no real way (at the moment) to simulate tactical control of 5 others in combat as well as is allowed by simply controlling their actions directly.

 

Minimizing the importance of the main character to the extent that you suggest means that there might as well not be a main character, as you're playing a constantly shifting role(s) of those currently in the party.

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"Forsooth, methinks you are no ordinary talking chicken!"

-Protagonist, Baldur's Gate

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Somebody correct me if I'm wrong but there is no resurrection mechanic in this game, right? So assuming that the Player Character is somehow central to the game's plot in some fundamental way (even if that doesn't mean the "savior" archetype) having the game carry on with the central protagonist dead seems like a stretch.

 

Sure, we all get frustrated when our main character gets whacked in Baldur's Gate and we're forced to reload our last save, but that's part of the challenge; protecting the central character at all costs so she can get to the end and deal with the big conflict should definitely be part of any game and your tactics should adjust accordingly.

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Yeah no resurrection magic what so ever. And you also don't play other characters in BG2/PST. I wasn't playiing as Annah in PST, I didn't pick dialog choices for her, it would of been pointless to continue if the nameless one truly died via bring grinded up or burned to ash. In the whole of the baldur's gate series while your not a 'chosen' one if your main dies, and again you haven't been RP'ing for ANY of the other characters (sorry but walking and combat isn't really the RP'ing part) there is no point to continuing on. And PE is going to have a story where you (before you have a party) experience some supernatural event that makes you unique to the story in some way.

 

As for someones Robin Hood example, if an RPG did that where your 'main dude can die' and it doesn't matter I'd imagine you wouldn't be Robin Hood. You'd probably be one of his 'merry men' and Robin hood would just be tossing out missions and if you died you just played another random merry man and so on and so on. IWD1-2 are the only real examples in games past where the 'main' dying wouldn't matter... but that's because there wasn't a main. You made 6 characters, sure you could consider 1 the main but if they died you could literally replace them with a new char if you wanted or decide to carry on with out that slot filled.

 

IWD1-2 where fun and interesting games but they weren't big RP experiences. They where linear dungeon crawlers. They took infinity engine games, and turned them into Diablo with more tactical combat with a party system and arguably better stories. None of which stands up against BG1-2 or PST for RPG'ness. Just lacks the character development, attachment and general freedom in what to do.

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Def Con: kills owls dead

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As a player I want the game to challenge my skills and force me to become better at it. However, that wasn't achieved by this particular mechanic in the BG games in any way.

 

In BG1 the easiest way was making a fighter and simply not putting him up front (bows being the superior weapon in BG1 made that a no-brainer anyway). In BG2 a mage with self-buffs on all the time was probably the easiest way. In either case, nothing was achieved by making that one character more crucial to protect than any other. In BG1, a few arrows and/ or spells snuffed out the light of the main character v. easily. In BG2 you had instant-death abilities and petrification traps that did the same. None of that made you think more or apply superior tactics rather than stupid drudge work (never make your main character a scout, for instance). The only reasonable defense of it mechanics-wise would be cases where everyone in the party died except the player character as a result of you using the other party members as meat shields (which usually forced a reload in BG1 anyway).

 

I get the point story-wise, but I'm not sure that justifies the negative effect it has on mechanics.

Edited by Sacred_Path

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- force a reload

 

- force a restart (in Trial of Iron)

 

obviously both are p. anti-climactic. The first is simply a nuisance. The latter punishes you quite harshly for something that might even have been proper tactics (like moving your character into harm's way). In this case you'll be mostly concerned with keeping your character away from danger at all times.

 

Both are a whole **** load more climactic than "well that's that, but since you didn't really matter anyway so keep going."

 

Let me rephrase, main character is super important. But at some point in the game the party is going to be sucked into the whole mess of the story, and they are going to be equally important. Of course, you can just kick them out whenever (mechanically) but roleplayingly the party is part of the story at some point in the game. They aren't just followers but interacting with the story, reacting to events that happens and taking part of the events.

 

If the main character dies, why wouldn't I be able to continue on the story? Forton died, but I can still continue the game. Why is the main character and Forton different in this case? Obvious answer is "Because Forton isn't the main character". I'm looking for some "common sense" in some sort of form...

 

Because it's your story. There's no way to both make the PC the hero while at the same time allowing for the game to be completed with her/him dead halfway through. The whole point of these games is that for whatever reason (in P:E it'll probably be because you have some amazing soul) you are unique, and that uniqueness is the reason why, in the end, it's only you who can succeed and not anyone else (no matter how special they themselves may be).

 

It would be like finishing PS:T with just the party after TNO himself permanently ****ed by The Lady/Lothar/whoever; Annah, Grace, Morte, Dak'kon, Vhailor, Ignus, and Nordom may be cool and powerful in their own right, but they're just not you.

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Yeah, I don't think in general that there needs to be a 'main hero' to make a story great, but to have any meaningful relationships and character growth and attachment you need a protagonist that can't just be offed and have the game continue. Every game where that would work is ultimately an Icewind dale style game where your characters, quite literally, don't matter at all and have no personality. They're literally chess pieces. You don't grow relationships between your characters and other NPC, you don't build up one thing or another or pick factions over other factions. The general level of complexity in your interactions has to be cut to allow for that.

 

Again, not to say the overall idea is a bad one, I have no doubt it could be turned into a very fun and interesting game. It just wouldn't be a very good RPG if you have no real character development or growth between your character and NPC's in the world. RTS, a 'tactics' game, something more linear where all the story is 100% NPC driven that are mostly telling you what to do outside of you making actual choices... yeah.

 

-edit-

Oh roguelikes also kinda come to mind, you die and you play as a completely new random hero but with the pre-knowledge of what you've done and keep going and going till you manage to clear more and more stuff. ZombiU kinda manages something like that from my understanding.

 

As for a protagonists view on mechanics or was that not having one and killing mechanics? I didn't play BG2 or IWD2 any different from each other as far as combat. Just because if my 'main' died I was forced to reload didn't mean I kept them out of harms way. More often then not if I had an NPC I actually gave a damn about or hadn't completed there main quest (in BG2 for instance) I'd just reload anyway since I didn't enjoy dealing with the resurrection mechanics of hauling equipment around or ensuring I had a res memmed and all that.

 

That and there 2-bar health system (Stamina and health) will ultimately allow for your main to get knocked out, even on super hardcore modes, with out dying and let you keep fighting (they'll just be in sleepy time). Probably a good idea to ensure you move the fight away from sleepin' beauty though, don't need a fireball ruinin' their slumber. Either way my first chars gonna be a Barbarian, preferably dual wielding, and you better believe he'll be up front slaughtering fewls... and probably passing out a good few number of times from being overwhelmed in all his furious fury.

Edited by Adhin

Def Con: kills owls dead

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Maybe the fear is that of loosing something you create attachment too?

 

Why I'm advocating for this... Han Solo, Chewbacca and Leia and other rebellious forces would not have given up the fight if Luke died. Neither would Luke just give up his struggle, even if he was the last man standing. Pretty much that.

 

The plot could be more important than the character. Kind of, in a philosophical sense, the World's Ego matters more than the Individual's Ego.

 

EDIT:

The world is about to end, and you are fighting the final boss! The main character dies, ****. I was just 2 hits away defeating him.

 

Just bury the guy after the fight or something, why does the story have to come to such an abrupt halt?

Edited by Osvir

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Starting again the whole game after death on Ironman mode harsh? Then don't play f**** Ironman. Is that to hard to wrap your tiny minds around such a simple solution? "Please make Ironman easier than easiest mode so I can brag about beating the Ironman in school", you still will not be cool.

 

As a player I want the game to challenge my skills and force me to become better at it. However, that wasn't achieved by this particular mechanic in the BG games in any way.

 

Which part didn't you understand?

 

There's nothing challenging at all about keeping exactly one of 6 characters alive in a game that is designed/ balanced in a way that death may strike any party member at any time. The only thing it leads to is hiding that one character away (in Trial of Iron) or have all the necessary "anti-buffs" on this character at all times (anti-petrification, anti-death magic etc.). Are you so bored that you would actually call this interesting gameplay, or do you pride yourself on doing things that would be obvious to a trained monkey?

 

Then of course there could be no anti-buffs at all in the game, still monsters randomly cast 1-3 insta-death spells at your party. Again, skills wouldn't save you here, but dumb luck. You could employ perfectly proper tactics and not lose a single character or even health in the game due to skillful playing, but one monster casts one insta-death/ very high damage spell at the one character that can't die and you're ****ed. I'm not even citing reasons here why skill should be more important than dumb luck (it's too obvious and has been done numerous times, also by devs).

 

What I'm NOT saying is that I have a solution to the problem on the narrative side. I would have supported this game whole-heartedly if there was no "main character" at all but only a party of 6 (random) people. As it is now they're going a route of compromise, there are companions but you can also create characters, there's a main character but the companions probably have some effect on the story too.

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