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Agree with the spirit of the thread.

 

I ended up using the mercenary hire feature as a hot... I mean capable companion creator in PoE. Not a big talker but it's like she was made for me. :lol:

 

I have to admit I don't get the idea of romances that don't happen because the NPC isn't into your character. Does it really matter to anyone that their straight or gay romance is gay or straight when someone else plays?

 

I think I “heard” Deadfire will have a more sophisticated version of ME's flirt feature. That seems like a good way to keep the love alive. The downside of romance is if you're a completist that “quest” can run out long before you stop playing.

 

> Does it really matter to anyone that their straight or gay romance is gay or straight when someone else plays?

 

I think there are two issues for people here (I say for people because I personally don't care).

 

The first is that writers want to write characters as individuals principally, which can possibly run contrary to arbitrarily making them bisexual in order to 'fit' male, female, gay or straight main characters.  In other words a writer wants to write a romance because it feels natural to the character, not because they have to in order to fulfil a quota.  Josh has said this several times I believe.

 

The second is that some people feel that making any and all possible romances bisexual erases the visibility of under-represented sexualities.  In other words people want representation specifically for gay romanceable NPCs.  I guess the feeling is that crow-barring in gay romances isn't true representation.  Also, some might say that it's unrealistic.

 

That said I don't claim to fully understand the complaints about this particular feature so take this with a grain of salt.

 

Edit: here, I found something which can probably explain it better than I can:

 

https://www.out.com/popnography/2015/7/13/dorian-dragon-age-inquisition-why-gamings-breakout-gay-character-matters

 

> Prior to Bioware's Dragon Age, games had occasionally featured LGBT characters, but in almost all cases, they were only queer if the player specifically made the choice that they should be. Dorian was the first major example of a character who could only be gay, after decades of characters who could only be straight.

 

> "I suppose this aspect of Dorian will make him controversial in some corners, but I was glad to include it," series creator David Gaider told IGN in 2014. "It made writing Dorian a very personal experience for me, and I'm hopeful that will make him seem like a fully realized character to fans in the end."

 

So you can see several things in this article, firstly that Gaider made a big point of the character's homosexuality being integral to his character rather than something that was simply bolted on for the sake of representation.

 

Secondly you can see that it's a big deal for some people to have representation that is specifically for gay people.

 

Make what you will of the rest of the article but the first half at least is instructive.

 

---

 

Personally I don't give a flying **** if the character is gay, bi, or whatever, I just care if the character is well-written and aesthetically interesting.

Edited by Yosharian
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The advantage of speculative fiction is the opportunity to explore new and unique situations. If the game is to explore sexual situations, I'd like to see it take a look at ones that are particular to this setting. For example, the implications of sexual relations with non-human intelligent creatures, or unusual ramifications of relations with the corporeal undead or animancy animations employing captured souls. Would a sexually obsessed animancer go so far as to encase the soul of the object of their affections into a shapely construct? Are there intelligent non-humans who keep humanoid concubines of different species? What about a degenerate brothel that maintains prostitutes appealing to a variety of tastes. &c.

 

Well that doesn't sound like something that'd fly in the current political climate ;-)

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Agree with the spirit of the thread.

 

I ended up using the mercenary hire feature as a hot... I mean capable companion creator in PoE. Not a big talker but it's like she was made for me. :lol:

 

I have to admit I don't get the idea of romances that don't happen because the NPC isn't into your character. Does it really matter to anyone that their straight or gay romance is gay or straight when someone else plays?

 

I think I “heard” Deadfire will have a more sophisticated version of ME's flirt feature. That seems like a good way to keep the love alive. The downside of romance is if you're a completist that “quest” can run out long before you stop playing.

 

> Does it really matter to anyone that their straight or gay romance is gay or straight when someone else plays?

 

I think there are two issues for people here (I say for people because I personally don't care).

 

The first is that writers want to write characters as individuals principally, which can possibly run contrary to arbitrarily making them bisexual in order to 'fit' male, female, gay or straight main characters.  In other words a writer wants to write a romance because it feels natural to the character, not because they have to in order to fulfil a quota.  Josh has said this several times I believe.

 

The second is that some people feel that making any and all possible romances bisexual erases the visibility of under-represented sexualities.  In other words people want representation specifically for gay romanceable NPCs.  I guess the feeling is that crow-barring in gay romances isn't true representation.  Also, some might say that it's unrealistic.

 

That said I don't claim to fully understand the complaints about this particular feature so take this with a grain of salt.

 

Edit: here, I found something which can probably explain it better than I can:

 

https://www.out.com/popnography/2015/7/13/dorian-dragon-age-inquisition-why-gamings-breakout-gay-character-matters

 

> Prior to Bioware's Dragon Age, games had occasionally featured LGBT characters, but in almost all cases, they were only queer if the player specifically made the choice that they should be. Dorian was the first major example of a character who could only be gay, after decades of characters who could only be straight.

 

> "I suppose this aspect of Dorian will make him controversial in some corners, but I was glad to include it," series creator David Gaider told IGN in 2014. "It made writing Dorian a very personal experience for me, and I'm hopeful that will make him seem like a fully realized character to fans in the end."

 

So you can see several things in this article, firstly that Gaider made a big point of the character's homosexuality being integral to his character rather than something that was simply bolted on for the sake of representation.

 

Secondly you can see that it's a big deal for some people to have representation that is specifically for gay people.

 

Make what you will of the rest of the article but the first half at least is instructive.

 

---

 

Personally I don't give a flying **** if the character is gay, bi, or whatever, I just care if the character is well-written and aesthetically interesting.

 

You seem to have an awful lot to say about a topic in which you have no interest. I would vastly prefer an efficient use of characters for romance purposes. I think it is pretty rare for a character's sexuality to be so intrinsic that making them romanceable by the main character regardless of gender would have an impact on how well-written the character is. I actually have a strong preference for a game designer that is as inclusive as possible. Even a stereotypical manly man can be gay and a stereotypical fabulous man can be hetero (or maybe even a lesbian trapped in a man's body). You lose very little in the way of aesthetics by making it so, as long as you play your own game and don't look over someone's shoulder as they play theirs to determine whether your immersion has been broken.

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Since we are trying to be inclusive to everyone on relationships and romances should they include very popular and increasingly mainstream fetishes? I mean 50 shades seemed very popular.

 

Despite lots of people treated it as one, homosexual isn't really a fetish.

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If I disapproved of the existence of redheads and didn't want them anywhere my fictional character in a video game, so I asked about a toggle to make them properly dark-haired instead, people would say I'm nuts. But wanting to switch off people who happen to prefer their own gender, or both genders, is apparently still a thing we're doing.

This is a false equivalence.

 

...

 

 

No, it's not. It was a polite and reserved manner to hint at the problem. Had he/she used racial, gender or politcal aspects as examples, it would have become clearer but maybe offensive. It is at the core the attitude of making the world as you like it by getting rid of people, in our nice game environment: by changing them, which was criticized.

 

To the rest, I do not really care. They can make ambivalent characters with interchangeable sexuality according to the players behavior, a very efficient kind of game design, or create true characters with restricted sexual orientation, straight, homosexual and bisexual, as the reality is. In the latter case however I would prefer an additional way of creating a preferred "partner" besides the normal companions. The mercenary system is a good way for this. It also simulates reality because why should the player character pick only from the "ugly"companions? They have the personality, great, but lack the body ...  :dancing:

 

To Anders et al., I did not understand the "hype" around him. BTW belonging to a minority does not make one a better human. So there can be jerks in any group.  :grin:

Edited by geala
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The best thing about Anders was that he hated Templars as much as I did. If you are willing to kill Templars with me, I could give two ****s who you are or what you do.

What I'm saying here is **** Templars.

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If I disapproved of the existence of redheads and didn't want them anywhere my fictional character in a video game, so I asked about a toggle to make them properly dark-haired instead, people would say I'm nuts. But wanting to switch off people who happen to prefer their own gender, or both genders, is apparently still a thing we're doing.

This is a false equivalence.

 

...

 

 

No, it's not. It was a polite and reserved manner to hint at the problem. Had he/she used racial, gender or politcal aspects as examples, it would have become clearer but maybe offensive. It is at the core the attitude of making the world as you like it by getting rid of people, in our nice game environment: by changing them, which was criticized.

 

To the rest, I do not really care. They can make ambivalent characters with interchangeable sexuality according to the players behavior, a very efficient kind of game design, or create true characters with restricted sexual orientation, straight, homosexual and bisexual, as the reality is. In the latter case however I would prefer an additional way of creating a preferred "partner" besides the normal companions. The mercenary system is a good way for this. It also simulates reality because why should the player character pick only from the "ugly"companions? They have the personality, great, but lack the body ...  :dancing:

 

To Anders et al., I did not understand the "hype" around him. BTW belonging to a minority does not make one a better human. So there can be jerks in any group.  :grin:

 

 

It wasn't a hint, it was a comparison, and it was a false equivalence.  Hair colour is not remotely the same as sexuality.

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If I disapproved of the existence of redheads and didn't want them anywhere my fictional character in a video game, so I asked about a toggle to make them properly dark-haired instead, people would say I'm nuts. But wanting to switch off people who happen to prefer their own gender, or both genders, is apparently still a thing we're doing.

This is a false equivalence.

 

...

 

 

No, it's not. It was a polite and reserved manner to hint at the problem. Had he/she used racial, gender or politcal aspects as examples, it would have become clearer but maybe offensive. It is at the core the attitude of making the world as you like it by getting rid of people, in our nice game environment: by changing them, which was criticized.

 

To the rest, I do not really care. They can make ambivalent characters with interchangeable sexuality according to the players behavior, a very efficient kind of game design, or create true characters with restricted sexual orientation, straight, homosexual and bisexual, as the reality is. In the latter case however I would prefer an additional way of creating a preferred "partner" besides the normal companions. The mercenary system is a good way for this. It also simulates reality because why should the player character pick only from the "ugly"companions? They have the personality, great, but lack the body ...  :dancing:

 

To Anders et al., I did not understand the "hype" around him. BTW belonging to a minority does not make one a better human. So there can be jerks in any group.  :grin:

 

 

It wasn't a hint, it was a comparison, and it was a false equivalence.  Hair colour is not remotely the same as sexuality.

 

I really don't think that drawing a direct one-to-one comparison of hair color and sexuality was the point of that analogy.

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If I disapproved of the existence of redheads and didn't want them anywhere my fictional character in a video game, so I asked about a toggle to make them properly dark-haired instead, people would say I'm nuts. But wanting to switch off people who happen to prefer their own gender, or both genders, is apparently still a thing we're doing.

This is a false equivalence.

 

...

 

No, it's not. It was a polite and reserved manner to hint at the problem. Had he/she used racial, gender or politcal aspects as examples, it would have become clearer but maybe offensive. It is at the core the attitude of making the world as you like it by getting rid of people, in our nice game environment: by changing them, which was criticized.

 

To the rest, I do not really care. They can make ambivalent characters with interchangeable sexuality according to the players behavior, a very efficient kind of game design, or create true characters with restricted sexual orientation, straight, homosexual and bisexual, as the reality is. In the latter case however I would prefer an additional way of creating a preferred "partner" besides the normal companions. The mercenary system is a good way for this. It also simulates reality because why should the player character pick only from the "ugly"companions? They have the personality, great, but lack the body ... :dancing:

 

To Anders et al., I did not understand the "hype" around him. BTW belonging to a minority does not make one a better human. So there can be jerks in any group. :grin:

It wasn't a hint, it was a comparison, and it was a false equivalence. Hair colour is not remotely the same as sexuality.

I really don't think that drawing a direct one-to-one comparison of hair color and sexuality was the point of that analogy.
It clearly was.
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It's not a bad comparison. You're born a ginger, just as you're born a homosexual. Sure you could pretend you are straight, or dye your hair but that in the end your hair will still be ginger when the dye is removed and you'll still be homosexual even if you try to pretend you aren't. It's okay for people to lose their minds over sexuality, but not if a character is ginger? 

It's not about being ginger or being gay, but about certain inherent characteristics which are okay to bitch about and other inherent characteristics where it's silly to bitch about.

 

If for the last hundreds of years gingers were persecuted for being ginger and then it would be okay to be ginger, people would also lose their minds if suddenly gingers were added to the game. But it's not. Gingers are a part of life, just as anyone else with a different sexual orientation or skin color other than yours. Difference is that there are still a lot of people who are uncomfortable, disgusted with people who're too different than them.

 

So it's not a bad comparison.

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I do not see anything wrong with romance or sexuality in games. I also do not see anything wrong if it is not included. And I honestly don't think there is anything wrong with intentionally veering away from sex or intentionally emphasizing it. It just depends on what the writers are going for. 

 

For example I thought that Hir and Pel's banter about whether she has feathers growing on her lady parts was hysterical but I also was not bothered by the lack of player romance either.

 

As a matter of personal taste I do tend to prefer characters that are aesthetically pleasing, something I haven't felt about any of the female character portraits. I'd also prefer sex and romance be a part of the story because of the added humor, story lines, and immersion it provides. It's an M Rated game. Sex and romance is a huge part of every day life. Intentionally excluding that seems bonkers to me. 

 

But if Obsidian would prefer that Eder remains a broseph for life I can't get mad at that. 

Edited by PatrioticChief
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As someone said before, very wisely indeed, sexuality and love is something that is deeply rooted in everybody's life, so it would indeed be unusual not to include it. It is just the natural development from idle banter and party interactions with each other. Yet if it is not included, it is nothing people will riot about.

 

However as everybody has a valid yet personal opinion this stuff can be tricky to pursue. I certainly do not need or want every aspect of human/dwarven/orlan etc. sexuality in my game, but I can recall the huge outcry when Siege of Dragonspear hit. If you guys remember there was a character, not even important to the storyline, who told you that she was born as a guy but was now living as a woman. Or the other way around, can not remember, but the internet went nuts over a half-sentence. Stupid.

 

However if something similar was part of the main story, the PC or party member, and it is talked about a lot, I would object how relevant this is made out to be. And so everyone has a certain expectation and it can indeed be a hot topic. I would trather prefer a traditional approach similar to BG2 and deeper companion interaction instead of a Mass Effect or even DA:O social interaction which is solely focused around bonking the hottest piece you can find.

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As someone said before, very wisely indeed, sexuality and love is something that is deeply rooted in everybody's life, so it would indeed be unusual not to include it. It is just the natural development from idle banter and party interactions with each other. 

You must have a very interesting workplace. 

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Sexual repression is probably more common tbh.

 

I think romance is very dependent on the circumstances of one's life, and is not guaranteed to makes sense or be appropriate given a story. Role-playing is about choice and freedom, but as it pertains to the scope of the narrative. It's also interesting to take part in an established world instead of just operating as the noble-liberal fresh out of the Earthly realm who will impart their other-worldly sense of values onto all that they meet.

 

I think depicting some love and romance ambient in the world is fine, watching one companion fall for an npc or another companion, or otherwise is fine. But not when rolled out as a fully ubiquitous system that one's whole party is taking part in. The notion that every character is must be romancable in some way betrays a deeper and more natural sense of what relations are. What about the freedom for the character to pursue relations with well written characters that exhibit their own freedoms. That is life, relations should come up against road blocks whether on romantic grounds or otherwise. Which is why I'm really happy that Obsidian is exploring what they are. I'm even more excited over the inter-companion relationships, which will be responses to the environment that you cultivate in your party.

 

It's the right decision because romance should complicate things, and writing unique character relations plays heavily with the emotional relation between characters and where they are in life. Take romance seriously, depict it well, don't waste time telling that many times over between many different pairings.

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I agree. I have rarely seen a person wearing a tag that indicates their sexuality. Collar yes, but that is an entirely different thing.

 

Now that I really think about it I feel like if you can tell a character's sexuality by their behavior outside of a romance (or learning about their current love interest), the writer is being a little lazy and maybe kind of silly. You may think you know but you don't really know unless you know.

 

This feels like a box writers can just step out and have every npc they can possibly imagine and every romance except maybe the most cliched,

 

 

 

You seem to have an awful lot to say about a topic in which you have no interest. I would vastly prefer an efficient use of characters for romance purposes. I think it is pretty rare for a character's sexuality to be so intrinsic that making them romanceable by the main character regardless of gender would have an impact on how well-written the character is. I actually have a strong preference for a game designer that is as inclusive as possible. Even a stereotypical manly man can be gay and a stereotypical fabulous man can be hetero (or maybe even a lesbian trapped in a man's body). You lose very little in the way of aesthetics by making it so, as long as you play your own game and don't look over someone's shoulder as they play theirs to determine whether your immersion has been broken.

 

 

 

 

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Sexual repression is probably more common tbh.

 

I think romance is very dependent on the circumstances of one's life, and is not guaranteed to makes sense or be appropriate given a story. Role-playing is about choice and freedom, but as it pertains to the scope of the narrative. It's also interesting to take part in an established world instead of just operating as the noble-liberal fresh out of the Earthly realm who will impart their other-worldly sense of values onto all that they meet.

 

I think depicting some love and romance ambient in the world is fine, watching one companion fall for an npc or another companion, or otherwise is fine. But not when rolled out as a fully ubiquitous system that one's whole party is taking part in. The notion that every character is must be romancable in some way betrays a deeper and more natural sense of what relations are. What about the freedom for the character to pursue relations with well written characters that exhibit their own freedoms. That is life, relations should come up against road blocks whether on romantic grounds or otherwise. Which is why I'm really happy that Obsidian is exploring what they are. I'm even more excited over the inter-companion relationships, which will be responses to the environment that you cultivate in your party.

 

It's the right decision because romance should complicate things, and writing unique character relations plays heavily with the emotional relation between characters and where they are in life. Take romance seriously, depict it well, don't waste time telling that many times over between many different pairings.

The only RPG I know where every companion is romanceable is Original Sin 2. Famous as they are, Bioware's game never lets you romance all of your companions, no matter how many people are demanding it.

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As someone said before, very wisely indeed, sexuality and love is something that is deeply rooted in everybody's life, so it would indeed be unusual not to include it. It is just the natural development from idle banter and party interactions with each other. 

You must have a very interesting workplace. 

 

I tell you working in the university let's you see all types of social interaction like it was played fast forward. :D

 

In this game you are basically forced together with random dudes that you need to interact with in a very condensed timeframe. So naturally relationships do evolve faster than one would expect. I just hope they will not go along the "everybody is your best buddy"-ME way, but leave room for all the hate, bickering, romance, empathy, distrust or even total indifference to each other and the surrounding events.

 

I think Tyranny went in a better direction than PoE which was rather shallow interaction wise. Everybody has an opinion even if that includes "I do not care." So I would like to see a deeper system in Deadfire and stuff like this can even be widened on the world. There are important characters, locations and factions all over the place, interaction could make the game more alive.

 

On the topic of sexuality specifically, ME went the wrong route here as well, by making the ultimate goal to bonk the hottest person on the Normandy. I hope Deadfire does include more depth in their romance.

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I'm really interested in the this topic buuuuuuut I tried reading all 19 pages of this and my brain went "we ain't got time fo' that." I'm just gonna shoot at the hip at where I think the thread is going and hope I don't step on too many toes. 

 

Hi, Bioware fangirl here. Besides their latest installment: ME:A, I've been a huge fan of bioware games and for the most part I've been fine with how they handled the romance. Yes, the fact that once you set your eyes on a romanacble character, whether they agree with your protagonists choices or not, with a few "heart icon dialog" choices they'll fall in love you formula can get a bit stale for some people. I'm all for sometimes letting the player be absolutely shallow and literally creating new MCs just so they can romantically Pokemon catch 'em all with the love interests, because lord knows I've done it. 

 

However, I'd really like to see variations added to it. I think what bores people is that the end outcome is always positive. I'm not gonna lie, (Dragon Age Inquisition spoilers incoming) I was really impressed and floored that the hobo elf man I'd been dating has actually been an elder god that wants to destroy the world. What I hope bioware does with DA4 is keep Solas like that. I don't want "true love opened his eyes and now he understands the sanctity of mortal life." Nah, I want him to be like: "I'm going to basically start a genocide to get what I want and I want you to join, but if you don't I'm still gonna destroy the world anyway and possibly down the line maybe kill you too if you decide to get in my way." Romance and Love doesn't always have to lead to good and healthy relationships (within reason, I'm not for any sexual assault or abuse).

 

I want some relationships can leads to some Helen of Troy drama. I want a player's choice to pursue a romance to launch a thousand ships and possibly have dire consequences to the game's environment, all because the protagonist (and ultimately the player if possible) didn't notice they were being sweet talked be a charismatic warmonger. It'd be really cool to have a moment when I'm playing game where I feel complicit in the bad things that's happening the game's world because I continue to love the villain/monster of the story that I didn't know was one to begin with. 

 

Like (spoilers) Doki Doki Lit. Club which plays on and inserts consequences into the trope that no matter how dumb your character is in the visual novel, a cute anime girl is gonna fall madly in love with you. Why can't we do that with Bioware's "We'll bang, okay?" romanceable companion buffet? 

 

Granted that's easier said then done. Bioware attempted something similar to what I said above in DA2 with Anders being an extremist and blowing up the chantry, however there a grey morale area where one could argue he was simply being a freedom fighter, I want a scenario where there is no grey area. Your beaux is straight up wrong and the fact that you the main character loves them makes them feel justified and ultimately enables them. 

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 Bioware attempted something similar to what I said above in DA2 with Anders being an extremist and blowing up the chantry, however there a grey morale area where one could argue he was simply being a freedom fighter,

YEAH! **** the Chantry! **** the Templars! :fdevil:

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I'm really interested in the this topic buuuuuuut I tried reading all 19 pages of this and my brain went "we ain't got time fo' that." I'm just gonna shoot at the hip at where I think the thread is going and hope I don't step on too many toes.

 

Hi, Bioware fangirl here. Besides their latest installment: ME:A, I've been a huge fan of bioware games and for the most part I've been fine with how they handled the romance. Yes, the fact that once you set your eyes on a romanacble character, whether they agree with your protagonists choices or not, with a few "heart icon dialog" choices they'll fall in love you formula can get a bit stale for some people. I'm all for sometimes letting the player be absolutely shallow and literally creating new MCs just so they can romantically Pokemon catch 'em all with the love interests, because lord knows I've done it.

 

However, I'd really like to see variations added to it. I think what bores people is that the end outcome is always positive. I'm not gonna lie, (Dragon Age Inquisition spoilers incoming) I was really impressed and floored that the hobo elf man I'd been dating has actually been an elder god that wants to destroy the world. What I hope bioware does with DA4 is keep Solas like that. I don't want "true love opened his eyes and now he understands the sanctity of mortal life." Nah, I want him to be like: "I'm going to basically start a genocide to get what I want and I want you to join, but if you don't I'm still gonna destroy the world anyway and possibly down the line maybe kill you too if you decide to get in my way." Romance and Love doesn't always have to lead to good and healthy relationships (within reason, I'm not for any sexual assault or abuse).

 

I want some relationships can leads to some Helen of Troy drama. I want a player's choice to pursue a romance to launch a thousand ships and possibly have dire consequences to the game's environment, all because the protagonist (and ultimately the player if possible) didn't notice they were being sweet talked be a charismatic warmonger. It'd be really cool to have a moment when I'm playing game where I feel complicit in the bad things that's happening the game's world because I continue to love the villain/monster of the story that I didn't know was one to begin with.

 

Like (spoilers) Doki Doki Lit. Club which plays on and inserts consequences into the trope that no matter how dumb your character is in the visual novel, a cute anime girl is gonna fall madly in love with you. Why can't we do that with Bioware's "We'll bang, okay?" romanceable companion buffet?

 

Granted that's easier said then done. Bioware attempted something similar to what I said above in DA2 with Anders being an extremist and blowing up the chantry, however there a grey morale area where one could argue he was simply being a freedom fighter, I want a scenario where there is no grey area. Your beaux is straight up wrong and the fact that you the main character loves them makes them feel justified and ultimately enables them.

I'm sorry you appear to have taken a wrong turn somewhere, Tumblr is that way? *points*

 

(Just poking fun, please don't be offended ;-])

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Romance and Love doesn't always have to lead to good and healthy relationships (within reason, I'm not for any sexual assault or abuse). 

 

I'd be okay with this under one condition: that a few obvious red flags go up early in the relationship to signal where it's headed. With Anders, I thought BioWare did that fairly well. With Solas, I thought they did not and Trespesser became a big bag of not-fun for me as a result, which, in turn, makes me want to avoid DA4.

 

BioWare toyed with the "bad romance" idea a few times in SWTOR and sort-of-almost headed that direction with Reyes Vidal in ME:A. I think the Pillars team could pull off something interesting in that area, I'd just prefer not to be blindsided with it.

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I am pretty sure, knowing Mr. Sawyer's sharp and tricky mind, that things won't be easy with romance at all.

 

At this point, straight males seem to be in disadvantage, just compare the pools

 

Xoti - most attractive to average player, she is human, but may be "I-belong-to-God" type, she is also a zealot, maybe to the point of religious fanatism.

Pallegina - second in rate, but she is godlike, and extremely difficult to get along with, with very complicated set of views. 

Maia is... khmm... of certain constitution... (hell, she is huge). 

 

Guys begging to add pale elf to companions list prove that the pool is not covering all types of preferences.

Fanatic, half-bird and a giant... oh yes.

 

And the girl's pool seems to be way better. Girls get

 

calm macho man,

intellectual sensitive boy,

exotic local shark boy

badass pirate guy

 

This is how commercial boysbands are usually formed - one archetype for each possible fangirl. Even if I am wrong and some female players will say "I also don't see MY option", still the diversity seems to be greater.

 

But. I am against Bioware's "we'll all bang ok" style and for my first run I am ok with no romance at all.

 

In PoE1 I was charmed by Sagani, I really respected her and was driven to help her with her quest, but it felt ok that she had a pack of kids, a husband and so it is respect only. I was happy when she became a cool elder and reunited with her huge family. No such archetype in the sequel, so I better focus on the storyline :)

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