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February 21st, 2008, 09:06
Npc interaction gets my vote.

For a moment I had tough time choosing between npc interaction and exploration, but suddenly it came to me as clear as the midday sky that exploring beautifull, unique and enormous gameworld without memorable npc personalties and chance to interact with them isn't much of a gameworld at all!

Take the two worlds for example. The world is in every way huge. Heck sometime this vastness is such incomprehensible that you'll get lost in there. Its part of the fun because this straying from the known paths leads often to a discovery, an unique place where you had never gone unless getting sidetracked. Last time I accidently found a beautifull village near the sea. Sadly this fragile illusion was shattered when I approached one of the npcs living in that lonely seaside village.

It goes without saying how badly storyline suffers because of this or why quests lack focus and substance. If they rarely happen to have some sort of consequences I couldn't care less, because npcs are all equally forgettable The game just doesn't feel intresting no matter how hard I try to play it.

Simply because of this sole reason the whole exploration thing feels as fake as the rest of the game. The main character's unability to create relationships with the npcs destroys the immersion for me. I felt like all the npcs were only there to serve him someway: as traders, questgivers (not real persons) and trainers. Rest of them were only there for the sake of holy EXP. When I begin to think the great rpgs I've played till this date. One thing which they all have in common are memorable npcs whom a player can interact with.
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