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June 8th, 2012, 05:51
Originally Posted by sakichop View Post
I think not knowing the consequence of choices is pretty realistic. I can think of many choices in my life that haven't turned out like i thought they would when I made the choice no matter how well intended I thought I was at the time.

I've made choices I thought were no brainers, only to have them blow up in my face and I've made choices I didn't even know mattered until seeing the results years later.

Obviously we make short term choices everyday that we can predict the outcome of with almost 100% certainty but long term choice are very difficult to predict no matter how sure you are of the outcome.
The thing is, in real life, you have a much better appreciation for the context and the likely repercussions. In the Witcher, it's deliberately obtuse, and the consequences usually end up just different kinds of "grey" anyway.

A game that I think does morality half decently is Fallout. Here, while there are -certainly- surprises, moral outcomes tend to flow more cohesively from the context that generated the dilemmas to begin with. Also, the context manages to be thoroughly ambiguous in its morality, while still allowing -some- degree of moral variety in the decisions and outcomes. I also think the consequences felt much more tangible in Fallout than in the Witcher games, where it feels like you're going through a linear tunnel, but you occasionally get a chance to rearrange the colors and patterns that line the sides.

In general, in an RPG, moral choices should be part of both the -role-playing- and the -game-. What I mean is that any moderately interesting moral systen should: 1. Play a role in how your character develops as a character and how you feel about what your character is and what he or she should be; 2. Should play some greater element in how you plan to achieve your goals within the game.
That doesn't mean that -every- choice needs to hit upon both. However, the strongest moments of a game's moral system should definitely hit both.

In the Witcher games, your role is predefined. The choices you make pretty much have no impact on who the Witcher is, how you perceive him, or how he perceives the world. They play a minimal impact on how you achieve your goals, but rarely is that the focus either. Instead, the "moral choices" in the Witcher basically act as a mechanism for selecting your "path" in a game, where the path hardly matters in Witcher and matters only during the middle chapter in Witcher 2. All in all, the moral choices in the Witcher do little other than help give character to the world.
That's not a bad thing to do, and they still help bring two great games to life. However, moral questions really don't play any interesting role in the Witcher games -as games-.

While I love both Witcher games, I just don't think any of the games out there (including the Witcher games) are doing moral choices anywhere near right, and only a few classic games came anywhere close themselves.
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