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Default Anyone else role-playing a good guy?

November 30th, 2011, 00:53
I try to stay away from camps of enemies who warn you to stay away. If a bandit says "that's close enough" to me, I tend to back away and stay out of there. I only "clear out" those areas with enemies if I'm there for a specific quest or something. I rarely just plunder a bandit's fort or something for no reason. Even in these aspects I tend to try to be a good guy and not provoke violence if I don't have to.

It's impossible to play a full-on character like this though in Skyrim, because there's just too much grey area and too many times when you provoke violence, no matter what you do. Skyrim is a bloody place, so that's to be expected.

As for doing shady type of quests, I don't mind them so much, as long as the initial premise isn't something like "murder this innocent person", or "steal from this person". As long as the premise is somewhat noble, I will go for it. Like doing Meridia's quest for Dawnbreaker. I wasn't crazy about spreading her "religion", but I figured that her temple was infested with a necromancer, it would be a good idea to clear him out because necromancers are basically evil. Or in this case, he was profaning her temple. So in my mind I was doing the right thing by killing him, even though I *really* should have just left them alone.

That's my main "problem", I look at everything in this game as "not my concern" and that I should leave people to their own devices. Oh, there's some evil people holed up in this fort? Not my concern. You want me to kill the bandit leader of this camp? Not my concern. I turn down a lot of quests because I have this whole mindset of trying not to interfere with the natural lay of the land. Not the best mindset for a game like Skyrim though, because you will just miss out on so many quests. But it's still fun in it's own way. And in the end, I still do a bunch of quests that I feel like doing, so it works out.
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November 30th, 2011, 01:07
In fantasy RPGs (like D&D) not getting involved is the neutral choice, not the good choice.

A truly good RPG character would go and root out those bandits because, well, they are bandits. The neutral guy would leave them alone if they left him alone. The evil guy would go join them or recruit them or kill them all and recruit them post-mortem.
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November 30th, 2011, 01:10
I guess I play it more aggressively than you guys. I ignore warnings, but don't attack first. If attacked, they are added as another notch to my bow (until the next upgrade). I also avoid taking anything marked as stolen (unless its uber valuable). ALL LOCATIONS MUST BE CLEARED. Well, until I get bored…
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November 30th, 2011, 01:11
If I had to put a label on characters I tend to play I would say that I usually don't play "lawful good" but "neutral good" or "neutral" ones. Some of you have said it before, and I have to agree that Bethesda's games seems to be skewed towards "chaotic" and "evil" end of the scale.
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November 30th, 2011, 01:12
^ You're right Bill. I'm very neutral in that way, I don't like to get involved. Yet I do lean towards good. I have cleared out plenty of forts of bandits who had bounties, and I generally tend to help people who ask for my help as long as the cause is noble. I've killed plenty of sabre cats who somehow make their way into people's homes (an overused radiant story quest for the Companions guild). And I've generally done good things.

So I guess you could say I'm neutral-good.

Oh, and stealing is generally a no go for me. Even if it's not considered stealing in the game, if it's on someone else's shelf, I don't touch it. Well except for one time, I stole some Argonian ale for a drunk in a tavern, but it was worth a measly 5 septims and I'm sure the bartender didn't miss it . That's probably the most shady thing I've done.
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November 30th, 2011, 07:48
In cRPGs, I'm always thieving, though not necessarily evil as in 'muderous'. My chars are generally good-intentioned when it comes to quests and politics and so on, but there's no chest or locked door that's safe from them. Even my most noble human knight in DAO was quite sticky-fingered … cleptomaniacs, all of them. So membership in the thieves guild usually is a safe bet while I reserve Dark Brotherhood and most Daedric quests for a second or third character. Not because I enjoy their quests but to make sure that I didn't miss anything.

It was rather funny in Skyrim when I accompanied one guy into his familiy's tomb to help him do something or other … and opened all the urns and robbed all the Draugr blank when he was looking the other way. Unfortunately I wasn't that good in sneaking and openeing locks then because it was one of the early quests I got, and he caught me doing it. He sounded really, really incredulous when he started to berate me for stealing his family's stuff although I had promised to help … and then, in mid-sentence, he waved it off and said something to the effect of 'Oh well, y'know … just help yourself to all that stuff as long as you clear out the tomb for me.' --> immersion.
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November 30th, 2011, 19:55
to my knowledge this game isn't d&d and thank god for that. this game is full of grey morality though not so much grey choices. to me i find the morality to be in the observance of the story and like Jaz said certain immersive elements of the game that respond to your behavior. the dialogue choices in the game are miniscule and for me that means little choice. i'll look to a bioware, or better yet obsidian game for that. i just finished another leg of the thieves guild quest last night and in it you find out backstory into the falmer race. i'm not aware of anywhere else in the game that given that much detail on how the nords conquered these once peaceful elves then drove them underground where the dwarves punked them too. to me that gives any character the ability to gain more of a conscience while playing the game to put everything in perspecive and not just go slaying every hostile or evil enemy. same with the forsworn in markham as well. the line between victim and agressor becomes blurred. do you people kill the hunters too that are in the lands who even admit to poaching on the lands? their are breaking the law and is that somehow better than a thief or bandit who steals for their living.
the politics in the game keep evolving for me and after nearly 200 hours i still haven't joined the stormcloaks or imperials. i'm playing a nord as i'm half scandanavian but learning so much of the lore and politics, the parallels between talos worship and christian worship or persecution, provided substantial food for thought and make the what i believe decisions that will actually have an impact on the game in choosing either one. i honestly don't want either at this point but for the sake of story i may still choose the stormcloaks. i think to me this points out the best choices in the game though and i would argue vehemently with anyone that could say choosing either side is the "good" option as they are both flawed.
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November 30th, 2011, 20:28
I really like that the morality in the game is defined by what you actually do, not what you say in some three choice menu option things.
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November 30th, 2011, 20:32
Originally Posted by BillSeurer View Post
I really like that the morality in the game is defined by what you actually do, not what you say in some three choice menu option things.
Agreed. To me the Biowaresque system isn't role-playing as much as a slightly more interactive choose your own adventure story.
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November 30th, 2011, 23:29
does what you do in real life not primarily revolve around what you say? or do you handle your lives the al capone way?
you can you understand a world real or not with out dialogue and more understanding. it may be a game but does that mean we should take stereotypes for granted and act upon them assuming the devs follow the generic model of bad guys where black hats and good guys white hats…

considering my morality doesn't condone capital punishment i think applying any kind of real world notions of morality in most games, including this one, that don't give non-violent or non-lethal options, a futile cause. again i've never played d&d other than some pc games so my mindset never goes into these presets that allow for complete bullshit labels like chaotic good. the only true one would be neutral, though never attainable, as any other extreme could be outdone.


also one primary reason not to skip the thieves guild is to hear stephen russel voicing thief characters, though he does do a lot of other voices too.
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November 30th, 2011, 23:36
In the real world you aren't offered 3 moral choices in every conversation. Your morality *is* defined by what you do, not by what you say.
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December 1st, 2011, 00:00
Well it's also defined by what you say, too. It's not exclusive.
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December 1st, 2011, 00:45
Originally Posted by BillSeurer View Post
I really like that the morality in the game is defined by what you actually do, not what you say in some three choice menu option things.
I love this too, and it's something I noticed right away. It felt so cool from a role-playing aspect to turn down the shady types of quests that didn't fit my character. Or finding a book about Boethiah, talking about senesless murder and violence, and which tells the reader to find the shrine of Boethiah if this appeals to them. It doesn't appeal to me, so I don't do it. There's some great sense of role-playing there. Your actions define your character.
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December 1st, 2011, 01:07
Originally Posted by Fluent View Post
I love this too, and it's something I noticed right away. It felt so cool from a role-playing aspect to turn down the shady types of quests that didn't fit my character. Or finding a book about Boethiah, talking about senesless murder and violence, and which tells the reader to find the shrine of Boethiah if this appeals to them. It doesn't appeal to me, so I don't do it. There's some great sense of role-playing there. Your actions define your character.
Aye this is what I like as well. Oh I don't mind morality decisions in the game via some choice but often I find it meaningless as you are both force fed the choice in many case (olive branch/paragon, angry face/renegade or some such) and not really making your moral choice but trying to guess that of the writers.

I like C&C that makes a difference but somewhat unstrapped from moral choices. Course sometimes you can get a good connection. I don't mind a quest reward where you can bypass certain things> I also enjoy a approach that lets you maybe do a violent/non-violent way.

Example in Skyrim (big spoiler for a small side quest):

Spoiler
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December 1st, 2011, 01:26
Pity that this quest seems to be one of the very few (if not the only one) where "out of the box" solution is possible.
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December 2nd, 2011, 01:19
Originally Posted by BillSeurer View Post
In the real world you aren't offered 3 moral choices in every conversation. Your morality *is* defined by what you do, not by what you say.
explain to me how in the real world any action of morality isn't usually accompanied by or heavily influenced by the words comming out of your mouth. in reality most moral decisions aren't based who you do and don't kill. also a few posts back you itterated your mantra of the three choices and put boy scout on one end and "commie" on another your versions of what constitures the extreme ends of decisions fall flat with me considering i'm an eagle scout and would consider myself a commie over capitalist pig any day though i don't ascribe to either. only having 3 choices doesn't necessary mean they have to be positive/negative/neutral. take alpha protocal for example those 3 choices are based on archtypes which at least is far better than the renegade versus paragon chocies in mass effect 2 because the first one just encourages "awesome button" mentality.

i agree that actions are ultimately what matter but in a game setting your options are usually railroaded to fit a story and without a much larger impact on the game world their meaningless even in a virtualsense. dialogue at least gives the option to engage in a scenario that isn't so distant from reality, which makes sense that its available in the most "realistic rpg" alpha protocol and more absent in a fantasy world like skyrim. of course i guess that could be countered with its supposed to be a fantasy setting but then that circles back to the farce of transplanting a morality setting into a world that is stripped of a "modern or global" sense of reality. though it is true that many lack that, i would argue it is nearly impossible for anyone to have that in tamriel as the classrooms aren't overcrowded their non-existent, though the i guess the bards college does teach 2songs and the mages have their teachings of magics.

here's another interesting question that may or may not get answered. Even though I joined the companions before reaching 20 hours in or so but still at near 200 haven't joined the circle, to me i still haven't been able to do it dispite at least joining the dark brotherhood fairly late though not taking on any missions yet. so the question is has anyone else joined the circle and if so how does that square with your in game morality compass?
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December 2nd, 2011, 02:02
Originally Posted by skavenhorde View Post


…Second is that you can't take them on. I want to be against the Dark Brotherhood. I want to take apart the Thieves Guild, but other than killing everyone I don't think there is any way to do it. I'm not even sure killing everyone would work.
This is exactly what I was thinking of when I ran into the woman in Riften - the "Protector of Riften" or something along those lines - and she talked about cleaning up the corruption of the city and restoring its reputation. Unfortunately, you can't… I would love nothing more than to have competing factions that you can join to take down other factions. This would not only increase replayability, but it would drastically increase role-playing opportunities. What if your character is morally against the
Spoiler – Companions Spoiler
Doesn't it make sense that your character should be able to oppose that sort of thing?

The frustrating part is that this is already pretty much built in - almost every faction has a competing faction of some sort in the game, and it would be great from a role-playing perspective to choose which side to be on (and have it be deeper than a good vs. evil thing, focusing more on what role your character would play in these conflicts).

Originally Posted by BillSeurer View Post
The morality in cRPGs is and always has been totally silly. Skyrim isn't any worse or better than the rest. At least it doesn't have 3 choices for every question:
1) The paladin-boy-scout-dalai-lama-goody-goody answer
2) The one no one ever picks
3) The raging-insane-greedy-nazi-commie-taliban response

That was one thing I kind of liked about ME and ME2. You are the hero, villains need not apply, but can decide whether to be a renegade or by-the-book guy (or somewhere in between). OK, they didn't handle that well in many places but the idea was good.
While I am ultimately disappointed in ME's system because it oftentimes simply doesn't matter what approach you choose, I also like this idea in concept. In theory, it allows the player to play their own version of the "hero" role and define it themselves. Add in some truly meaningful dialogue options that can lead to different results/world reactions/consequences, and there would be a solid and unique system in place that is an improvement over the "3 choice/black and white morality system" mentioned in the quote.
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December 2nd, 2011, 02:14
Originally Posted by curious View Post
so the question is has anyone else joined the circle and if so how does that square with your in game morality compass?
Yes, I finished their questline.
As for my in-game morality compass, well, um, basically, at least when it comes to major questlines, I donīt give a shit about my charīs morality because the game kinda doesnīt either.
Having morality in these cases mostly means just refusing content, not approaching it in different ways.
That particular point in the Companionsī story called for a difficult speech check or maybe application of some kind of global recognition system like fame/infamy (which unfortunately isnīt present).
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December 2nd, 2011, 02:27
It's too bad there isn't a reputation with factions like there was In Morrowind. There's this binary friendship/thaneship with a person or couple, but no sliding scale of independent faction reputations that has adjusting benefits/drawbacks.
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December 2nd, 2011, 16:51
Originally Posted by curious View Post
explain to me how in the real world any action of morality isn't usually accompanied by or heavily influenced by the words comming out of your mouth.
Newt Gingrich. He's all socially-conservative-one-man-one-woman-RAWR! while having divorced a pile of times and cheated on several of his wives. His words mean nothing given his actions, heck, the words are worse than meaningless. He is a hypocrite.

My SIL knows a guy who if you met him you wouldn't like him because he looks like a bad guy and talks like he is all-for-himself-screw-everyone-else. Yet in a terrible storm he risked his boat and his life to rescue some people he didn't know from a sinking ship.

The actions are what counts.
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