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RPGWatch Forums » Games » The Elder Scrolls » TES V: Skyrim » CRPG-Meter for Skyrim

Default CRPG-Meter for Skyrim

December 27th, 2011, 11:12
CRPG-Meter:

Lets measure the crpg-ingredients for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim:

To determine if a game should apply to a certain level, all the mentioned demands must be fulfilled in that level and the levels below.

CRPG Categories:
Story, Characters, NPC-Interaction, Gameworld, Manipulation, Combat

Other interesting categories:
Graphics, Sound, Game length, Difficulty, Perspective and Play-style.


Each category is divided into 6 frames from "none" to "Heavy" CRGP-elements giving a score from 0 to 5 points.

A game’s points from each category will be added together and then divided with 6 and will classify its CRPG-score to the following list:
• RPG-Elements Score 0 - < 1 point => "No CRPG"
• RPG-Elements Score 1 - < 2 points => "CRPG ultra-light"
• RPG-Elements Score 2- < 3 points => "CRPG light"
• RPG-Elements Score 3 - < 4 points => "CRPG"
• RPG-Elements Score 4 - 5 Points => "CRPG Heavy"

The RPG-element categories and their 6 scores/frames
(STORY, CHARACTER, NPC-INTERACTION, GAMEWORLD, MANIPULATION, COMBAT)

STORY:

Questions:
- How many quests, side quests, puzzles, riddles are in the game?
There are many side-quests and one big main quest. The TES-tradition of Daedra-Quests is there again: Do some gods a favor. Many puzzles with switches, levers and other machines need to be solved in the dungeons. One combination puzzle type is getting repetitive after a while. HINT: look at the key.

- How great is the non-linearity of the game - can the quests be solved in more than one way?
You can solve most quests in a non-linear order (Some quests are depending on others). Unfortunately only a few quests can be solved in more than one way.

- How many side-stories, legends in books or from NPCs are told?
Many side stories are told, lots of legends and secrets are told in books, letters etc.; you can find many references to older TES-games.

- Are there different game-endings?
No. But you can ally with different factions to reach your goal(s). Skyrim is a Sandbox game – there is no real ending in the game. The end of the main quest is NOT the end of the game.

- Is it a game with many choices and consequences?
Yes and no. There are many choices but hard consequences are rare. You can do nearly everything in one walkthrough.

Rating:
No: 0 Points:
- The story is told in the beginning, and finished in the end, AND is not changeable during the game.

Ultra-light: 1 point:
- A Few ”events” (NPC’s, happenings (Disasters, divine influences etc.), Full movies interludes etc.) evolves the story, but still in a given path.

Light: 2 points:
- The story is developing through chapters or milestones, which still have an almost fixed path.
- A very few side stories/quests, OR noticeably different paths you can take to advance the same story, are available.

Medium: 3 points:
- The story develops as the game proceeds, meaning new information’s/events contribute for developing of the story on a frequent basis.
- Events (See above) impact on the story are considerable,
- The gamers actions have considerable impact on the development of the story.
- More than one path is possible in the main story. Not necessarily more endings, just the possibility to choose between different “story” paths of the “main story”. (Side quests not directly related to main story don’t count).
- A few side stories/quests besides the “main story” must be available.

More: 4 points:
- A few different endings are possible
- More than 2 ways to go through the story
- Lots of side stories/quests are required.
- Quests or tasks got often more than one solution!

Heavy: 5 points:
- Very open ended, with very high replay value regarding the story alone.
- Many events will contribute to many side / main story topics and respond to many different approaches from the player.
- Lots of books or other materials can give additional information’s about world for the interested player.

Skyrim (STORY): 3 points


CHARACTER:
Questions:
- How many different characters can you play (race, gender, profession, …)?
You can choose your race and gender and learn skill and dragon cries.
Any combination of skills is allowed.
- How many different skills can be chosen for your character(s)?
You can learn 18 skills (skill level 1 to 100).
Alteration, Archery, Alchemy, Conjuration, Block, Light Armor, Destruction, Heavy Armor, Lockpicking, Enchanting, One-handed, Pickpocket, Illusion, Smithing, Sneak, Restoration, Two-handed, Speech. (The differentiation in minor, medium, major skills from earlier TES-games is omitted)
At certain skill levels you can enhance the skills even more with extra features. One extra feature can be selected at each character level.

You can learn 20 dragon cries, too (similar to spells).

- How many different traits can be chosen for your character(s)?
No traits

- How many levels can be reached?
Level 50 is a common character end level. You gain character levels by learning skills. Skills can be learned by training, reading books and practicing. Higher skill levels are harder to learn. So leveling is slowing down over time.

- How much can the character be changed at each level?
In this game it’s the other way around: By advancing in skills you gain character levels. You can select one extra feature for one skill at each character level.

- How many guilds, groups can be joined?
The thieves guild, the mages guild, companions (=fighters) guild, black brotherhood, the Blades, join the emperor or the north rebellion, you can do services for every major city.

- How many different ranks in these guilds can be achieved?
You can become grandmaster of each guild and Thane of each city.

- Can you get a reputation?
Yes.

Rating:
No: 0 Points:
- No development other than a better weapon, armor and a few pre-distributed skill points after each chapter / milestone.

Ultra-light: 1 point:
- Max 2 points to distribute on the character(s) abilities (Attributes /spells / treats / skills) each time they develop levels and a maximum of 10 upgrades(Levels) of the character(s). Learning by doing covering the same amount of development is acceptable too.

Light: 2 points:
- Max 5 points to distribute on the character(s) at least 5+ different abilities (Attributes /spells / treats / skills) each time they develop levels and at least 10+ upgrades (Levels) of the character(s). Learning by doing covering the same amount of development is acceptable too.
- A minimum of social development / regards in the game-world societies is necessary) (Wiping out a society/guild is not counting)

Medium: 3 points:
- More than 5+ points to distribute on the character(s) at least 10+ different abilities (Attributes /spells / treats / skills) each time they develop levels and at least 15+ upgrades(Levels) of the character(s). Learning by doing covering the same amount of development is acceptable too.
- The characters can have considerable social impact on more than one society / guild. (Wiping out a society/guild is not counting)

More: 4 points:
- Now a party of at least 3 fully controlled characters should be possible,
- The choice from different professions / races should give a combination of at least 10 possible different characters (Note: Different mug-shots don’t count).
- Considerable social impact on more than 2 societies / guilds is possible. (Wiping out a society/guild is not counting)

Heavy: 5 points:
- More than 10+ points to distribute on the character(s) at least 15+abilities (Attributes /spells / treats / skills) each time they develop levels and at least 20+ upgrades(Levels) of the character(s). Learning by doing covering the same amount of development is acceptable too.
- 15+ different races/ professions to choose from.
- Plenty of societies/guilds which the characters have a social impact on. (Wiping out a society/guild is not counting)

Skyrim (CHARACTER): 4 points (Skyrim is a single player game =3, but a lot of 5 is covered, too)


NPC-INTERACTION:
Questions:
- How many dialogues are in the game ?
Many

- How many dialogue options do you have?
Only some options are available.

- Are these options depending on your skills, alignment or deeds?
There are depending on finished quests and your allies. The Speech skill is used for trading, bribery, persuasion and intimidation only. You don’t get more dialog options!

- Have your answers an influence on the game?
Sometimes

- Have the NPC's a life of their own?
Yes

- Is trading available / is it balanced?
Yes and yes (you can break it if you try hard).

Rating:
No: 0 points:
- Few NPC's most only merchants.
- Pre-determined dialogues.

Ultra-light: 1 point:
- The dialogues now have a few options, but it still contribute to the same story, AND each choice is reversible in consequence.

Light: 2 points:
- NPC's are presented in small societies, AND some of them can make a difference in further development of the game.

Medium: 3 points:
- NPC's acts truly as a part of a bigger community.
- NPC's in each society are much aware about social status also toward your characters.
- More than one society with NPC's are present in the world.

More: 4 points:
- There are fleshed out dialogue trees,
- Choices is most final and irreversible.
- NPC’s have considerable impact on the amount of Main / side- stories.

Heavy: 5 points:
- NPC's are aware of the continuously developing situation in the game-world, AND react clearly to the gamers actions and deeds.
- More than 2 bigger societies of NPC's must be available.
- Reputation, skills, alignment, attitude etc. have considerable impact on the NPC reaction.

Skyrim (NPC-INTERACTION): 3 points

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
Last edited by HiddenX; January 1st, 2012 at 02:18.
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December 27th, 2011, 11:13
GAMEWORLD:
Questions:
- Is it rewarding to explore the last inch of the gameworld ?
Yes - you can find an abundance of quests and many items.

- Are unique items in the game ?
Yes

Rating:
No: 0 points:
-The task to get from A to B has no or few options to go away from a fixed physical path.
-The game-world only inhabits monsters and a few merchants.
-The world is without (none monster) societies.

Ultra-light: 1 point:
-Still a strict physical path, but with a few small societies on your way.

Light: 2 points:
-A few areas are optional on your path each chapter / milestone.
-Societies will give some quest / story material.

Medium: 3 points:
-There are at least several physical paths to choose between, AND more will open up as the game proceeds.
-Societies must give the feeling of a live community, with their own daily business, AND not just a few NPC's waiting for the hero's to come along and pass on a few quests.
-The size of the game-world must be considerable.

More: 4 points:
-Societies must be very different and have strong relation to the game-world and each other.
-We are no longer talking about a few paths when exploring the world.
-The appearance of monsters and societies must make common sense.

Heavy: 5 points:
-The world is totally open for extreme freedom to explore, AND it's your own task to decide if your character(s) are good enough
to take on the different part of the world.
-The diversity of the game-world environment must be significant.
-Day & night cycles, and different weather conditions and /or different seasons.

Skyrim (GAMEWORLD): 5 points – (Free exploring at its very best).

MANIPULTION:

Questions:
- Can you manipulate the gameworld (levers, buttons, secret doors,…)?
Yes

- Can the gameworld manipulate your character(s) (traps, teleports, etc.)?
There are traps and teleports.

- Can you pick up items, herbs, raw materials and then mix new potions, make new weapons, etc.?
A lot - you can make, mix, enchant lots of things, weapons, armor, potions …

rating:
No: 0 points:
- Almost no action possible besides walk/run and combat, except maybe a very few items.
- Game-world itself is very static.

Ultra-light: 1 points:
- Very few limited interactions besides walking and combat.
- A few chest barrels is scattered through the game.

Light: 2 points:
- There are a few weapons, armors, items in the game.
- Traps, levers, keys and alike is available in its simple presence.

Medium: 3 points:
- The game-world have a considerable amount of weapons, armors, items, skills, spells in significant variations.
- The things to do will quickly fill up more than one page in your journal, AND keep it that way for most of the game.
- Custom items must be available. (Custom items are items that can’t directly be found in the game-world, the player needs to either combine more items or process an item with (Fire, acid, poison, magic, tool-masters etc. (repairing items don’t count)). It’s not limited to weapons and armor only)

More: 4 points:
- You can see /influence changes in the environment, OR use it either to create/ manipulate things or get strategic possibilities in combat. (Summarized: Game-world environment itself offers several interactivity possibilities: (Chopping trees, make fire, diving in water, hide behind objects, move/destroy/manipulate objects, etc.)
– A few different ways of making custom items must be available. (See above).

Heavy: 5 points:
- Many different ways of making custom items must be available. (See above).
- Alchemist, spell-casters, smiths, herbalist and other item collectors are in heaven due to the tons of items for manipulation.
- Gameworld environment itself offers many interactivity possibilities: (Chopping trees, make fire, diving in water, hide behind objects, move/destroy/manipulate objects, etc.)

Skyrim (MANIPULTION): 5 points



COMBAT:
Questions:
- how many tactics, strategies, spells/ counterspells you have to use to survive in combat? (Remark: this has nothing to do with real time vs. turn based combat. example: Rage of Mages: Real time and very tactical)
Depending on your character’s skills you have to use very different tactics to survive. Some characters are much easier to play than others.

- Are there many different monsters, enemies …
Yes

- how good/complex is the enemy AI?
Medium - Good

- Is it critical for combat to have a good equipment management?
Yes

- Do you need resistances against poison, fire … to survive?
Yes - this is important

- Is the combat balanced?
Mostly balanced – Skyrim is an auto leveling sandbox game after all - some challenging and interesting boss fights at least on expert level. If you’re power leveling too much, enchant all of your equipment to maximum, Skyrim is getting easy at higher levels.
Try to change your tactic, weapons, combat style, if you die often.

Rating:
No: 0 points:
- You put your character(s) into position and they solve combat on their own, or the combat result is only affected by your skills on the keyboard.

Ultra-light: 1 point:
- Real-time combat only without any pause options.
- Options are limited to the choice of the opponent to attack.

Light: 2 points:
- Character skills and/or players strategic abilities have a noticeable more impact on the outcome of the battles too.

Medium: 3 points:
- Players can more decide the pace of the battle,
- Strategic positions of the party is more vital, and the options for each character is more plentiful.
- At this point it's also important that monsters offer some diversity not only in numbers, but also in strategies necessary to win.
- Monsters AI are more than attacking the closest enemy!
- There must be more issues for your characters during combat, than losing or giving hit-points. Ex. Poisoning, paralyze, curse etc.

More: 4 points:
- There must be alternatives to swing your sword and cast a spell during combat Ex. Skills, traps, spells, treats, or items to use in battles.
- Different strategies are necessary for survival.

Heavy: 5 points:
- Each characters can be controlled individual down to the smallest detail and in any pace wanted.
- The monsters must offer a lot of difference both in numbers, abilities, battle environment, which must offer quite diversity in battle approaches.
- Monsters AI are considerable.

Skyrim (COMBAT): 3.5 points


OTHER NON-RPG RELATED INTERESTING CATEGORIES:

GRAPHICS:
An “Year” of evaluation should follow the graphics score!
We try not to express how beautiful the graphics is (It's difficult to separate entirely), just how many specific graphic technology elements it contains (Like shadows, lightning etc.), and its standard compared to others at the time of the review!
• 0 points: Text only.
• 1 point: Static pictures, and/ or low 2D resolution in relation to other games in the year of evaluation.1 point: Static pictures, and/ or low 2D resolution in relation to other games in the year of evaluation.
• 2 points: Higher 2D resolution in relation to other games in the year of evaluation.
• 3 points: Mediocre 3D or 2D with up to date standard compared to others in relation to other games in the year of evaluation.
• 4 points: Fully 3D with up to date standard compared to others in relation to other games in the year of evaluation.
• 5 points: Fully 3D. Absolute among the best in its category, with a few ground breaking content compared to others at the time it is reviewed.
Skyrim (GRAPHICS): 4 points (year 2011)

SOUND:
This determines the amount and the degree of acoustic technologies in the sound, not directly the quality or realism of the sound, and not how many different sound boards it covers.
• 0 Points: No sound.
• 1 point: Mono sound.
• 2 points: Very sparse and basic Stereo sound
• 3 points: Plentiful Stereo sound
• 4 points: Support of more than 2 speakers, and considerable environmental sounds.
• 5 points: Fully real surround sound support (At least 5.1), with ultra-real 3D feeling
Skyrim (SOUND): 4 points

LENGTH:
An average length is used for calculation, a second score in “( )” for maximum hours searching under every stone and solving every quest could be mentioned if it brings the game into another score-area.
• 0 points: Under 8 hours.
• 1 point: 8 - 20 hours.
• 2 points: 20- 50 hours.
• 3 points: 50- 80 hours.
• 4 points: 80 - 150 hours.
• 5 points: over 150 hours.
Skyrim (LENGTH): 5 points

DIFFICULTY:
• 0 points: No brain teasers at all, only walk /run and hack 'n slash
• 1 point: Easy brain teasers that don't slow the game pace down considerable.
• 2 points: Some problems (Riddles, events, combat, NPC's etc.) can make you stop for a short while until you find the relative easy solution!
• 3 points: Not all problems are obvious in solution, but there are more possibilities to get help. The amount of problems must also be considerable.
• 4 points: Some problems can't be solved without help/things from other places or without some in vain tries first!
• 5 points: The game is loaded with more or less hard problems, and many problems can only be solved by extensive brain use!
Skyrim (DIFFICULTY): 3.5 points

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
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December 27th, 2011, 11:13
PERSPECTIVE:
• TXT: No perspective (e.g. no graphics), text games.
• FIX: Fixed viewpoint (Not changeable).
• FLEX: Flexible distance/orientation. The viewpoint distance can be changed and/or the screen can be rotated.
• ISO: Isometric view (Any angle between vertical top-down and 1.st person view, but still seen from above the party/ characters.
• SHOULDER: The close overhead / shoulder view, where the gamers viewpoint follow the character(s) heading, with a look just above the head/shoulders of your character(s), and the character(s) can be seen in the button of the picture.
• FP: The 1.st person view where gamers viewpoint is the same as looking out of the eyes of the character(s)
• BIRD: From the sky the players has a vertical down view point on the game-world.
• SIDE: Viewpoints like Platform games or the elder Kings/Space quest games
Skyrim: FP / Shoulder


PLAYSTYLE:
• SP: Single Player
• MP: Multiplayer
• OP: Online playing possible
• MMO: Massive multiplayer online
• Co: Co-operative multiplayer possibility
• PvP: Player versus player mode in multiplayer mode.
• P: Parties possible.
• S: Single character game
Skyrim: SP (you can chose partners for help).

TECHNICAL STATE
Skyrim: is stable on XP/Win7 Systems with a newer GFX-card and CPU.

Conclusion Skyrim
RPG Factors:
• Story: 3
• Character: 4
• NPC-Interaction: 3
• Gameworld: 5
• Manipulation: 5
• Combat: 3.5
RPG Score = 3.92 => CRPG

Other Factors:
• Graphics: 4 (2011)
• Sound: 4
• Length: 5
• Difficulty: 3.5 (combat difficulty can be adjusted in options)
• Perspective: FP / Shoulder
• Style: SP

Bottom line:
A very good game for the fans of free world exploring. Skyrim is a perfect sandbox game. You can do everything in a lot of different ways and orders. Many quests are providing many hours of fun. Quest Markers and fast traveling to already found locations are good for casual gamers. Combat, leveling and economy is better balanced than in Oblivion and Morrowind.
The sandbox character of the game has some downsides, too. Dungeons are refilling after 30 days. Hostile dragons are still there after finishing the main quest. You can make many choices, but the consequences are often not there. So you can ask yourself “Have I done really something to this world?”
Some “quest types” are getting repetitive after a while – like finding dragon words. You can get Grandmaster in all guilds in one walkthrough – the replay value would be much higher if could not advance in all factions at once.
But all in all a good TES game.

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
Last edited by HiddenX; December 27th, 2011 at 17:33.
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December 27th, 2011, 15:03
Another great summary!

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December 27th, 2011, 17:04
In the sea of the juvenile posts we've seen on the watch lately this excellent analysis is refreshing. Quite surprising Skyrim came closer to being CRPG-heavy than CRPG-light.

I'd just like to interject here and point out that I'm not going to say anything to spoil the mood, Chief. I'll just float here and watch. Don't mind me, just sitting here, floating and watching, that's me.
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December 27th, 2011, 17:08
Originally Posted by Kostaz View Post
In the sea of the juvenile posts we've seen on the watch lately this excellent analysis is refreshing. Quite surprising Skyrim came closer to being CRPG-heavy than CRPG-light.
Agreed. And I don't know if it just me getting used to things, but I found the adaptation of the console interface much better than Oblivion or FO3

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December 27th, 2011, 17:18
Skyrim finishes very high in the categories Gameworld and Manipulation -> no surprise here. Character development is strong, too.

Disenchanting, but not really bad is Story, NPC-Interaction and Combat. Combat is bit more fun, at least until level 30 or so if you play on expert difficulty level or higher.

One improvement to Morrowind and Oblivion are the dungeons - you can call them dungeons again and not earth holes

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
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December 27th, 2011, 20:32
Yeah, it is surprising that it winds up crpg-heavy, but that could be the reason why it's so damn hard to stop playing it! Even with 3 other games to delve into, I still find myself peeking back into Skyrim every so often. Also, I gave it as a Christmas give to 4 people that I know, and gave not a single other game as a gift this holiday season. I can poke holes in it at times, with it being easy and all, but it is a great deal of fun, and quite immersing.


-Carn
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December 27th, 2011, 20:44
Originally Posted by HiddenX View Post
You can get Grandmaster in all guilds in one walkthrough – the replay value would be much higher if could not advance in all factions at once.
I hear this frequently, but why would anyone choose to become leader of every guild if they don't enjoy that?

(and honestly, judging by the playing time on master difficulty, to become leader of the 4 guild factions as well as win the civil war and complete the main quest would probably take more than 1,000 hours, during most of which the PC would be very high level and extremely overpowered)

My first character was a Dunmer thief/archer, played about 200 hours and got up to level 45, barely completed a couple of daedric quests as well as 60-70% of the Thieves Guild or so, ignored main quest, civil war and all the other factions.

My second character is a Nord barbarian specializing in 2-handed weapons. He despises such cowardly tactics as Enchanting, Sneaking Around, Archery, Magic Spells and Witchery of Any Kind (incl. staves and scrolls), Alchemy, Picking Locks, etc.

I completed most of the Companions quests and became Harbinger but there are still more random quests I can do. I helped the Stormcloaks conquer Whiterun, which is probably 20-30% of the civil war questline. Haven't done any other factions, no daedric quests nor the Thalmor Embassy yet. I've played this character about 110 hours so far and I'm at level 25 now.

I simply find it uninteresting to play a JOAT character who joins every faction. I might try some kind of hybrid character at some point in the future, but I'm having a lot of fun with the more specialized archetypes.

I'll probably play a mage next. Making choices like not joining the College of Winterhold, for example, if I'm not currently playing a mage means I have a crap ton of content to look forward to in my subsequent playthroughs.

I still haven't even touched the main quest, Dark Brotherhood, College of Winterhold, Imperial Legion and most of the daedric quests, despite having logged well over 300 hours in total with these two characters.
Last edited by CountChocula; December 28th, 2011 at 04:42.
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December 27th, 2011, 20:55
You can always restrict yourself - but I think it would be more interesting if all guilds would have conflict-ridden goals. The Witcher 2 did a good job at this.

I finished Skyrim on expert with 200 hours (level 52) - Master of every guild, 48/50 achievements.
I played a 2H North warrior with no magic skills except restoration.
I maxed out 2H weapon, heavy armor and smithing.

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
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December 28th, 2011, 04:26
I personally find Skyrim to be even "heavier" than what this rating scale thing says. I find it incredibly deep, on a personal, immersion level. It's probably the most immersive game I've ever played.

For example, I find the NPC interaction very engrossing. I love finding new NPCs who may have a story to tell, even if it doesn't result in a quest. I like just learning about their existance, and Skyrim NPCs often present you with 2 or 3 topics you can briefly discuss with them. Awesome. It just adds so much life to the world. And it's also amazing just how much dialog is in the game. I love it.

I also find the core role-playing aspect of "be who you want to be, do what you want to do" very heavy in Skyrim. You are really defined by your actions. You can play a good guy, a bad guy, and everywhere in between. It's amazing to me how I just "feel" my character. He is for the most part, a good guy, but also at times, neutral, to the point of not wanting to get involved with certain matters. And it just feels perfect. I just spend hours getting lost in my character and defining him with the actions I take in the world of Skyrim, and it's very rewarding. It really feels like he is exactly how I envisioned him in my mind. Combined with a little imagination, Skyrim is like RPG nirvana.

Add that to the fact that at all times you are basically swimming in lore - from NPC conversations, to notes you find, to books, to quests, everything. The lore just washes over you. It leads to just a very immersive and "deep" experience. I would give it a 5 star rating in terms of how "heavy" it is.
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December 28th, 2011, 16:34
IMHO NPC Interaction is a weaker point in Skyrim. There are no fleshed out dialog trees, no dialog options depending on character stats.
Often I cannot play the role I want to play (North rebell) with the dialog options.

Compare this to Planescape Torment for example and then you know why the category NPC Interaction in Skyrim is closer to 3 than to 5.

The curse of many modern games: The designers think that every sentence have to be recorded by voice artists. Older text only games could provide much more dialog options and branches. Nowadays this is simply to expensive!

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
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December 28th, 2011, 16:39
Did you do this for TW2? is there a link ?
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December 28th, 2011, 16:54
I did it for The Witcher 1:

CRPG-Meter

Nearly the same average score, but for very different reasons

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December 28th, 2011, 17:08
Any plans to do it for TW2 ?
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December 28th, 2011, 17:16
This is much work … maybe one day … but you can try it yourself, too
I can send you the latest CRPG-Meter template or you can use the above Skyrim-CRPG-Meter by deleting anything Skyrim specific.

For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, neat, and wrong. - HL Mencken
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December 28th, 2011, 18:11
Originally Posted by HiddenX View Post
IMHO NPC Interaction is a weaker point in Skyrim. There are no fleshed out dialog trees, no dialog options depending on character stats.
Often I cannot play the role I want to play (North rebell) with the dialog options.

Compare this to Planescape Torment for example and then you know why the category NPC Interaction in Skyrim is closer to 3 than to 5.

The curse of many modern games: The designers think that every sentence have to be recorded by voice artists. Older text only games could provide much more dialog options and branches. Nowadays this is simply to expensive!
Well, a few months ago I would agree with you about the voiced dialog thing. I hated it compared to text. I still do love text in games. But voiced dialog can be just as immersive as good text. You may not get as many branching dialog options, but in return you can get immersed in the game with some good voice acting. And Skyrim IMO has enough dialog to keep hardcore fans of that stuff very happy, because everyone you talk to at least has a few lines to say to you. I don't take that for granted and you shouldn't either (not saying you do). But I didn't like voice in games until I played Skyrim and saw how well it can be done. You can still convey an incredible sense of depth even without text.

I disagree that NPC interaction is a weak point of Skyrim. I believe it is a strong point, for the reasons I've already listed. Nearly everyone you talk to has something of value to tell you, even if it's a small story about their mill, and how they're the only one working it and it's hard work, or they tell you a story about their kid, or their spouse, or where they used to live, etc. All these little bits make the world feel alive, and give you a better background for each NPC. Each NPC in Skyrim has a reason for being there and a story to tell, even if they don't speak at all! Just watch the guy chopping wood or working the mill, then sitting down to have some food and an ale, then heading over to the tavern, then back to his house and going to sleep. He's like a living, breathing person in this virtual world. He may even have a small bit of lore given about him by someone else in the town next door. Someone might say, "hey that guy over there is a hard worker, never seen someone toil so much over his work.", or, "that guy who works the mill is a drunk and everybody knows it. He doesn't take his work seriously at all!". Everyone in the game has a story to tell.

So while it's much different than Planescape:Torment (which I've never played yet, sadly), I'm sure it's not worse, and possibly not better either, just different. That is why I would give it a 5/5. But to each their own. Cheers.
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December 28th, 2011, 18:53
Gotta agree about text vs voice in game, an automatic turn-off for me is any game that requires me to listen to it. That might work for hermits, but not for me, lol!! Besides, text should be cheaper and then let them build a bigger and better game, imo, put that money to better use.


-Carn
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December 28th, 2011, 19:06
@Fluent

I agree with you that the quantity of spoken dialog in Skyrim is an achievement of its own.
But many dialogs have absolute no consequences. There are only very few points in the game where you have to make a hard choice with consequences that cannot be turned back. And this is/was an important quality for the makers of the CRPG-Meter back in the days of rpgdot.com.

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December 28th, 2011, 19:24
Very comprehensive. How did you develop your criteria to judge the "RPGness" of the game?

It would be interesting to judge other games by that same criteria and compare them.

EDIT: Perhaps I should have read the other posts first. Nevermind. You should post something that includes all the game scores you have evaluated (with links to the full analysis) so people can compare RPG worthiness. Might be something that could help people choose their next game to tackle.
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