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You can fail by not meeting your objectives. IE: "Save little timmy from drowning in the well" "timmy drowned, quest failed"

 

I believe the intent behind this topic is that failure, rather than being "You don't get anything good/nothing really happens," it is more that different consequences result from it that actually affect the future of the plot/story/gameplay.

 

All too often, it's "save timmy and everyone cares and things happen because of it, etc, or fail to save timmy, and none of that stuff happens, and that's the end of it."

 

It's like the whole world is solely designed for you to not "fail" given situations. Timmy was kidnapped by Bandits? Well, there's no teaming up with the Bandits for the ransom money. If you don't save Timmy from them and do the "good" thing, you simply fail. That's a negative thing, gameplay-wise. You literally get less-than-nothing out of it.


Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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You can fail by not meeting your objectives. IE: "Save little timmy from drowning in the well" "timmy drowned, quest failed"

 

I believe the intent behind this topic is that failure, rather than being "You don't get anything good/nothing really happens," it is more that different consequences result from it that actually affect the future of the plot/story/gameplay.

 

All too often, it's "save timmy and everyone cares and things happen because of it, etc, or fail to save timmy, and none of that stuff happens, and that's the end of it."

 

It's like the whole world is solely designed for you to not "fail" given situations. Timmy was kidnapped by Bandits? Well, there's no teaming up with the Bandits for the ransom money. If you don't save Timmy from them and do the "good" thing, you simply fail. That's a negative thing, gameplay-wise. You literally get less-than-nothing out of it.

 

No that is not what I meant

While I am not against having many different possible outcomes, when I talk about failure, that's what I mean. I mean that it should be possible to have entire quest paths become impossible because you failed.

This is not a problem if the quest density is high


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No that is not what I meant

While I am not against having many different possible outcomes, when I talk about failure, that's what I mean. I mean that it should be possible to have entire quest paths become impossible because you failed.

This is not a problem if the quest density is high

 

 

Oh. My mistake. Well, for what it's worth, I still think straight-out failure should actually affect the on-going gameplay, rather than simply being a super-gamey matter of "well, you didn't get this sword or this other quest, but, otherwise, absolutely nothing is different." You know, like every quest is all about you and is completely separate from the game world.

 

I'd much rather see a lot of "I can't BELIEVE you let our son die in the hands of those orcs! I'm totally going to join some faction against you, and you'll have to deal with me later!", as opposed to "I don't like you now, 'cause you didn't save my son, so I'll not give you things, and you'll never hear from me again or see the effects of any actions I perform in any surroundings or ANYthing! I'm just going to go stare at a wall for the rest of your playthrough."

 

Ya know? I don't want a quest failure to feel like a quest failure, but like an actual game-world person failure, with consequences and a connection to the ongoing passage of time and happenings. That's all I meant (although I was confused about the specific intent of your post, which I am not now.)

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Should we not start with some Ipelagos, or at least some Greater Ipelagos, before tackling a named Arch Ipelago? 6_u

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Remove the save/load crap & add permadeath + full loot. Otherwise it won't work.

 

The primary impact of failure in a game is to increase the significance of player decisions concerning life-and-death. Without permanent death there is less incentive for the player to consider in-game failure seriously. Severe consequences could intensify the sense of failure derived from their characters. Acts of heroism and bravery should only be accessible to the brave stereotypes, most likely people who roleplay as paladins, warriors, sorcerers, etc... While the most cautious individuals would adopt a rogue-like/wizard character.

 

I never understood "Luck" as one of the seven primary statistics of Fallout without permadeath. I mean, sure you always die in a gruesome way in Fallout, but what's the point of having Luck if I can easily reload my previous state?

 

Wouldn't "Luck" be more important if permadeath and full loot were present in the actual game?

 

If you're not gonna accept the risk of large penalties associated with failure, then don't even think about this at all. Some people might come up with the divergent story path reason, BULL. We don't want multiple story lines, we want IMMERSION. Xcom & Ultima are good examples of what I'm talking about. In Xcom we had a save/load feature, but the game wasn't even designed for that at all. In fact, most of the players who ENJOYED Xcom never made use of this during their game sessions. The fact of failing a mission was a joyful and painful experience, both great feelings for both were serving a roleplaying purpose. Taking insane risks to fulfill your mission and succeed was the most pleasent experience a player could ever have.

 

There's little need for such radical changes if we simply accept that both "successes" and "failures" have just about equal potential for future narrative. People often reload upon quest "failure" because it's not just a failure for the character but also for the player in that it objectively limits their gameplay experience by preventing them from taking part in future quests. I'm going to assume that's why players reload; because they know or expect that "failing" means they have less to play in the future. If each outcome to a quest has just as much viability for the future, there's little reason for the player to reload unless it's a matter of them not staying true to their character, in which case reloading is probably justifiable as the abilities of the player are separate from the supposed abilities of the character in roleplay. And if both "successes" and "failures" are equally viable for later gameplay, those labels themselves cease to have any value from the player's perspective. From the character's perspective they can still succeed or fail but it varies greatly between characters and thus there's not really anything to gain from identifying particular outcomes as "success" or "failure".

Edited by mcmanusaur
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Heavy Rain was a deeply flawed game, but one thing I appreciated about it was you could fail to do whatever it was you were meant to be doing, and the game kept rolling. Yeah, you screwed up. But you have to live with it. And this is more punishing than a fail state which is just a hard death or otherwise ultimate failure, because in that case you fail, game over. The story stops there. You reload or whatever. But if the story keeps rolling, your failure means something, it plays out across the rest of the tale. And in Heavy Rain, a failure didn't just mean less content, it meant different content. I played through and had intentionally had once character screw things up to see how that would impact the story, and got a different outcome to my flatmate who played it attempting to 'win' conventionally. (It was an outcome that made no sense, because Heavy Rain... Not exactly coherent. But that's moot.)

 

I think that's another exciting notion - Whilst I certainly approve of goals at which there is no 'failure', just different outcomes, I also approve of the idea that where there are goals you can definitively fail at, that failure isn't a stopping point, but just another point of reactivity. What I'm really getting at here is that, whilst people will generally want to play to 'win', a really exciting failable quest is one where the failure is equally developed, such that you might choose to fail (as a player, not in character) to see the outcome of that.

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It very quickly gets boring without permadeath. I refer to the latest X Com game for why this is so. I would be much dissapointed if there was not at least a hardcore mode with permadeath.

For everyone who wants permadeath, there's a hundred other players who will find it mindlessly irritating. I hope that's wrong, but game design to date doesn't suggest otherwise. It's fine just making it an option.

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Heavy Rain was a deeply flawed game, but one thing I appreciated about it was you could fail to do whatever it was you were meant to be doing, and the game kept rolling. Yeah, you screwed up. But you have to live with it. And this is more punishing than a fail state which is just a hard death or otherwise ultimate failure, because in that case you fail, game over. The story stops there. You reload or whatever. But if the story keeps rolling, your failure means something, it plays out across the rest of the tale. And in Heavy Rain, a failure didn't just mean less content, it meant different content. I played through and had intentionally had once character screw things up to see how that would impact the story, and got a different outcome to my flatmate who played it attempting to 'win' conventionally. (It was an outcome that made no sense, because Heavy Rain... Not exactly coherent. But that's moot.)

 

I think that's another exciting notion - Whilst I certainly approve of goals at which there is no 'failure', just different outcomes, I also approve of the idea that where there are goals you can definitively fail at, that failure isn't a stopping point, but just another point of reactivity. What I'm really getting at here is that, whilst people will generally want to play to 'win', a really exciting failable quest is one where the failure is equally developed, such that you might choose to fail (as a player, not in character) to see the outcome of that.

 

I agree, but for me the pertinent question is from whose point of view an outcome represents "success" or "failure". In most games it's the developers' point of view, based on their assumptions of players' desires and behavior. For linear games and story-based narrative RPGs these predictions might be correct or at least serve the game's intended purpose, but the players' and characters' point of view should maybe also be taken into account. I suspect the players' POV is about what you have identified; as long as outcomes don't decrease the game's playability the player can live with them. The characters' POV is obviously more likely to vary, and while a character should certainly be capable of failing in their own eyes this should be dependent on the character's own priorities.

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Agreeing with the concept of 'succeeding in ways other than the quest giver had hoped.' Often I will take a quest that is clearly a jerk's quest for jerks, in the hopes that I will be able to in some way double cross the jerk who has given me the jerk's quest for jerks.

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I am not worried about this so long as they base quests off of Arcanum (in that they could be solved in various ways), although I do hope that there are more political quests and a person can cause inter nation war. Instead of making just yourself hunted by every bounty hunter alive.

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They already did it in New Vegas, it's essentially a given that they're still going to follow that design philosophy in a game which allows for a wider range of outcomes. Why would they suddenly abandon superior design for inferior design?

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