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January 9th, 2008, 09:32
Originally Posted by Squeek View Post
In single player computer games the only source of collaboration available is the software. So I'm saying the software needs to provide collaboration and that that collaboration should be genuine.
Maybe we do indeed need MORE not less manipulation. The idea of a Dungeon Master AI in games is a pet idea of mine. In my opinion, to become more dynamic and to please a wider variety of playing styles (and thus to remain both commercially successful as well as interesting to the hardcore) games need to become more active in adjusting themselves to the player. I imagine there could be a "meta AI" that constantly polls the players actions and adjusts the game in subtle ways to make the experience more interesting, just like a good DM does. For example, if a player wins all combat easily with hardly a scratch, it could slowly increase the number, level, or type of opponents, or even nudge up an invisible difficulty slider that affects the underlying stats. Or it could do the reverse if a player has to reload frequently. If a gamer rapidly clicks away all dialogue it could offer more simple (e.g. binary) choices, while a gamer that appears to read all dialogue fully and takes time to decide which option to pick could get additional options. If a gamer develops his character as a mage, the game could notice and change loot, monsters, and even quests to better support that playstyle (particularly useful for this would be to trigger quests that actively "come to the player", something the witcher does very well, e.g. the incident at Vivaldis Bank). And of course do the same for a fighting or stealth oriented character. A game could even use ingame dialogue to find out what the player likes - does he enjoy exploration, fighting, dialogue? Then give him more of that. Is he frustrated by running around a huge map? Then give him options to skip that.
And so on. I think more plasticity in the provided experience could be a huge boon for roleplaying games, and it does not have to be through endless options screens. In a way that means more manipulation, but it would be in the interest of the player.
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