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Default Fallout 3 - Emil Talks Dialogue @ Official Forums

August 28th, 2007, 10:26
The Bethblog is pointing out some clarification and expansion from Fallout 3 lead Emil Pagliarulo.
First here is the statement from a recent 1Up interview (story) that started the furore:
EP: We went back and forth with the impact of dialogue on the character, and ultimately decided we didn't want to penalize or reward the player for carrying on a conversation. What you say and how you say it will certainly affect how NPCs react to you, and whether or not they'll give you quests, but not the ending of the game. [That] really depends on some of the big decisions you make during the course of the game, as well as your karma. And your karma changes based on your actions. So [if] you destroy Megaton [a city built around a supposedly inert atomic bomb], your karma plummets, so that will certainly affect the ending. But there are other moments too, key moments during the game, that greatly determine which ending you get.
…and Emil's response after some lengthy debates opened on the official forums:
Wow, I didn't realize the comments I made in that 1Up interview — you know, about dialogue — would cause such a stir! Mostly because I didn't realize I had chosen my words so poorly. Ugh.

I was specifically answering the question about whether or not dialogue affects the endgame. It doesn't — not directly. The endgame itself doesn't change based upon things you may or may not have said in dialogue. The endgame is affected by your actions. So that's what I meant by, "We went back and forth with the impact of dialogue on the character, and ultimately decided we didn't want to penalize or reward the player for carrying on a conversation." And yeah, that was a pretty bad choice of words, because it seems like the things you say in dialogue don't matter — and nothing could be further from the truth.

Believe me or not, but here's the reality of dialogue in Fallout 3: it does matter. It matters more than dialogue in one of our games has ever mattered. I feel really comfortable saying that, because one of my responsibilities is editing and directing all the dialogue that gets written, and one of my personal crusades is pushing the NPC interactions to be more meaningful. We approached that level in Oblivion — now I really feel like we've truly reached it.

So yes, you do get to roleplay through dialogue: sometimes, how you say something is just as important (and enjoyable) as what you say. Yes, you can ask different NPCs different things, in different ways. Yes, a lot of times your skills and attributes (besides just Speech) will open up new dialogue options. And yes, what you say in dialogue will matter. Act like a wiseguy, and an NPC may attack you, or refuse to deal with you. Treat an NPC with respect, and maybe he'll be more willing to talk to you.

Of course, in the true spirit of Fallout — in which the NPCs themselves have personalities — it really depends on who you're dealing with. NPCs, like people, have their own quirks and preferences. Take a bold approach with the right NPC, and she may like you even more. Play the weakling with the wrong guy, and you may just tick him off. So, indirectly, dialogue affects the ending of the game in the sense that it can open or close quest paths, which in turn can lead the player to perform good or bad actions, which in turn determines the player's karma rating… which does factor into the endgame. I hope that clears things up a bit.

Overall, our goal with dialogue is to craft unique, meaningful interactions with the NPCs. We want the player to feel like he or she is having a conversation with a person — not clicking on an information kiosk. Our designers have fully embraced that philosophy, and the game's dialogue reflects that. I really do think you'll be happily surprised when you play the game.
More information.
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August 28th, 2007, 10:26
You have to be extremely careful when talking to hardcore fans, because everything will be analyzed over and over.

I have to admit, I was a bit like this myself when PB talked about G2/3, after being such a huge fan of G1. I do consider it overreacting, but I understand how the fans feel.

All in all I don't worry too much about F3 - my expectations are fairly low, so I doubt I will be dissappointed. If it had been Obsidian doing it, my expectations would be a lot higher.
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August 28th, 2007, 14:05
You have to be extremely careful when talking to hardcore fans, because everything will be analyzed over and over.
In this case the problem wasn't just hardcore fallout fans, but it was bothering many Bethesda fans too, and causing confusion everywhere.
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August 28th, 2007, 16:36
Fallout 3 Preview from Leipzig GC ‘07
http://cody.blogs.tentonhammer.com/?p=61
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August 28th, 2007, 17:45
Originally Posted by Dark Savant View Post
Fallout 3 Preview from Leipzig GC 07
http://cody.blogs.tentonhammer.com/?p=61
Same presentation as at G3 and the press event obviously, down to the same jokes about Pip-boy's shaders.
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