Arcanum - Unofficial Fan Patch 1.5.1 - Page 3 - RPGWatch Forums
|
Your donations keep RPGWatch running!
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Arcanum - Unofficial Fan Patch 1.5.1

Default Arcanum - Unofficial Fan Patch 1.5.1

October 10th, 2019, 22:06
Easily annoyed, rather.

Tease better next time
--
The delightful and ever novel pleasure of a useless occupation.
Winterfart is offline

Winterfart

Winterfart's Avatar
Passenger

#41

Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: France
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 22:07
Yes, we can see that.
JDR13 is online now

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch
Original Sin Donor

#42

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 26,825
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 22:12
Are you using the "royal we" right now?
--
The delightful and ever novel pleasure of a useless occupation.
Winterfart is offline

Winterfart

Winterfart's Avatar
Passenger

#43

Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: France
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 22:16
Well, when something is that obvious, I assume it's visible to others.
JDR13 is online now

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch
Original Sin Donor

#44

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 26,825
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 22:30
And yet you don't see that you're annoying


Anyways, back to the topic of interest, I've completed (yes COMPLETED) Arcanum after release, pre-official patches, and it wasn't unfinished. A lot of its systems are underexploited, but not unfinished.
Bloodlines was unfinished (even downright unplayable at release), but Arcanum was fine.
--
The delightful and ever novel pleasure of a useless occupation.
Winterfart is offline

Winterfart

Winterfart's Avatar
Passenger

#45

Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: France
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 23:22
Originally Posted by Winterfart View Post
And yet you don't see that you're annoying
I'm annoying because you got triggered by a harmless statement? You must find a great many people annoying.

Trust me, had I known you were going to react that way and then reply ad nauseam over it, I would never had said anything.
JDR13 is online now

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch
Original Sin Donor

#46

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 26,825
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 23:27
Hey buddy, you're the one who started it and can't seem to stop now, so please don't whine about "ad nauseum" replies.

And to answer your question: yes, you are. (no smiley face)

Moving on.
--
The delightful and ever novel pleasure of a useless occupation.
Winterfart is offline

Winterfart

Winterfart's Avatar
Passenger

#47

Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: France
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 23:36
Cool. So you're done acting like a little bitch now?
JDR13 is online now

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch
Original Sin Donor

#48

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 26,825
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 23:41
Aw cute, now you're the one triggered.
--
The delightful and ever novel pleasure of a useless occupation.
Winterfart is offline

Winterfart

Winterfart's Avatar
Passenger

#49

Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: France
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 23:46
Actually, it was a serious question.
JDR13 is online now

JDR13

JDR13's Avatar
SasqWatch
Original Sin Donor

#50

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Florida, US
Posts: 26,825
Mentioned: 54 Post(s)

Default 

October 10th, 2019, 23:47
Originally Posted by Winterfart View Post
Not my war but:

1. Morrowind, New Vegas, Bloodlines… still get patches decades after release by their dedicated fanbases. Because they're great games.
These games are also not my war, but you'll be glad to know that these games are also games I have zero interest in. Funny that…

4. True, but roleplaying and dialogs rocks.
I disagree. Setting, lore, dialogue et al are great, you'll be hard pressed to find an RPG that doesn't have these elements and all the great ones are the ones that do them well. However, this idea that every dialogue has to be a forked path in order for it to be an RPG is utterly ludicrous, especially as that is the entire raison d'etre of the Choose Your Own Adventure genre and has no origin in RPGs. And even then the CYOA genre is about a lot more than just dialogues and pen and paper RPGing very rarely involved any NPC conversations at all, the forked paths were usually literal forks in the road.

I have never once played an RPG where every dialogue option provided for you fits perfectly with your chosen character nor provides any of the outcomes you'd want for that character and, more often than not, both the options and outcomes are so far from my chosen character that it is the most fundamental feature which turns me off from said game in 100% of cases. Whether it's a Bioware crowd pleaser or a 'highbrow' niche specialist game.

In fact, I usually find dialogue-option-centric games far more claustrophobic and lacking in choice than straight adventures with barely any NPC interaction. Why? Because dialogue is a cheap and lazy way to provide choice, and, more so, just the illusion of choice. However, present a player with a locked door and the options are endless:

Steal the key
Bash the door down
Use an unlock spell
Pick the lock
Complete a quest to be rewarded the key
Kill the key owner
Solve a puzzle/riddle to open the door
Get to the other side of the door by going a different route and finding a back door or secret entrance
Teleport
Disguise yourself as someone allowed through the door
Bribe the guard

^ this is just a door. One door in a 'proper' RPG. Off the top of my head I've provided 12 "choices" for the character, all of which will relate strongly to the specific class chosen by the player and their alignment.

No NPC dialogue required. What does an NPC dialogue provide? A choice between, what, two or three heavily scripted 'events outcomes' that, more often than not, completely break your fourth wall and usually have next to fuck all to do with what you had in mind for your character.

But, oh no, people will see the options when they read a dialogue and be able to instantly say "it has options, it's an RPG, hurr durr", completely missing the point that dialogue options are the lazy bottom of the barrel of choice systems with regards to RPGs, but when they come across a door they're just thinking "it has a door, why does that make it an RPG?" and proceed to pass it by their chosen method, completely oblivious to the fact that there were 12 fucking ways they could have done that act and the fact that they didn't even notice the inherent choice is exactly why good RPGs work so well, because you can play them as your character without even noticing that you are merely taking one of umpteen options available to you, and it's as smooth as warm butter.

But, yeah, all hail that 'funny NPC who offered me two ways to join it's faction' (both of which piss me off) in a game with 36 classes/skills/alignments…

Arcanum has some of the good stuff, but all you hear about are the 'funny NPC' shit. Utterly tedious non-RPG childish dreck.

5. It's a regular inventory system, nothing special. Loot has been improved with patches (more ammo!)
The loot system is designed around hoarding a gazillion crafting materials and, yes, in order to account for this unusual design it gives you… a regular inventory system. That's what's crap about it LMAO.
lackblogger is offline

lackblogger

lackblogger's Avatar
retired poster
Original Sin 2 Donor

#51

Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,951
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)

Default 

October 11th, 2019, 00:35
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
However, present a player with a locked door and the options are endless:

Steal the key
Bash the door down
Use an unlock spell
Pick the lock
Complete a quest to be rewarded the key
Kill the key owner
Solve a puzzle/riddle to open the door
Get to the other side of the door by going a different route and finding a back door or secret entrance
Teleport
Disguise yourself as someone allowed through the door
Bribe the guard

^ this is just a door. One door in a 'proper' RPG. Off the top of my head I've provided 12 "choices" for the character, all of which will relate strongly to the specific class chosen by the player and their alignment.

No NPC dialogue required. What does an NPC dialogue provide? A choice between, what, two or three heavily scripted 'events outcomes' that, more often than not, completely break your fourth wall and usually have next to fuck all to do with what you had in mind for your character.
Dialogs are a cheap option sure but not really lazy. All the options you provided cost more development ressources, and usually only games with poor grapical representations can "afford" all of them. I also like to note that all are recurring options actually present in Arcanum (maybe not the disguise thing, I only remenber one instance of that happening in the game).
But off course I agree, the more options there is the better, and dialogs are (or should be) only one options among many other.
lol In Arcanum you can jump off or sneak through windows (that blew my mind in 2001), I obvioulsy would like to see more things like that.

I also don't think dialogs are only illusion of choices, even inconsequential dialogs when well written always give you a panel of "flavours" to choose for your character. Some player like that kind of personal roleplay, on top of other RP mechanics.

So, okay.
I concede that Arcanum dialogs are awesome but only if you like to roleplay a snobby silver-tongued gentleman grifting everybody.
If not, maybe not.
--
The delightful and ever novel pleasure of a useless occupation.
Last edited by Winterfart; October 11th, 2019 at 00:53.
Winterfart is offline

Winterfart

Winterfart's Avatar
Passenger

#52

Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: France
Posts: 569
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)

Default 

October 11th, 2019, 16:24
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
Steal the key
Bash the door down
Use an unlock spell
Pick the lock
Complete a quest to be rewarded the key
Kill the key owner
Solve a puzzle/riddle to open the door
Get to the other side of the door by going a different route and finding a back door or secret entrance
Teleport
Disguise yourself as someone allowed through the door
Bribe the guard

^ this is just a door. One door in a 'proper' RPG. Off the top of my head I've provided 12 "choices" for the character, all of which will relate strongly to the specific class chosen by the player and their alignment.
I understand what you mean but I think you are limiting yourself in one way to open up other options. Of course all of these are interesting options (although disguising yourself to a door won't open it ), but why you think these options are any better than providing dialogue options I do not understand. In an ideal world I would want all of your options +
Use dialogue in any of the following ways:
- Intimidate guard into opening door (using strength
- Make guard fall asleep by giving him a drink laced with some sedatives
- Become friends with the guard, making him open up for you
- Make the guard believe something is wrong somewhere else (i.e. village being attacked, kid being bullied, someone being robbed)
- Seduce guard
- Become a superior to the guard through a questline and ordering him to leave his post
- Become acquainted with the resident to invite you in
- Work for the resident so they invite you in
- Pretend to help the resident (conman)
- …
In addition to this, I would also want
- there to be a roof to climb on using a grapple hook and rope and a door to get in from
- to be able to use a sledgehammer to break the wall
- Make a fire somewhere nearby to alert the guard and make them move

However, the thing is you are limited to what you can do as a game designer. All of your options are nice, but it doesn't mean they should be the only options or that they are necessarily better than dialogue.

In Underrail for example, you can go into one house through multiple ways:
- Sneak past the manor guards and enter the lower floor
- Sneak past the manor guards and climb up (if enough agility) to the upper floor
- Befriend one or two of the residents who invite(s) you in
- Shoot your way through the guards and kill everyone in your way

You could create 12 additional options easily in your head, but as these options all need to be programmed, it's not so simple.

Obviously, we are all talking about our own individual preferences, but I would personally not be interested in a game that has no/little dialogue but gives me tons of options unless that game were pretty short.

An example of that would be Dishonored, where you have 3-4 ways to complete most quests/maps, but still after the 20 hours of gameplay, I had more than enough.
Pladio is offline

Pladio

Pladio's Avatar
Guardian of Nonsense
RPGWatch Donor
Original Sin Donor

#53

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Manchester, United Kingdom
Posts: 6,264
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Send a message via MSN to Pladio

Default 

October 11th, 2019, 17:58
Originally Posted by Pladio View Post
Obviously, we are all talking about our own individual preferences, but I would personally not be interested in a game that has no/little dialogue but gives me tons of options unless that game were pretty short.

An example of that would be Dishonored, where you have 3-4 ways to complete most quests/maps, but still after the 20 hours of gameplay, I had more than enough.
Just to clarify, dialogue by itself is not the issue here, the issue is dialogue choices being in some way related to RPGing and the character you chose to play. And how the options available never can or do equate with your build/character with any consistency.

Your expansive list of 'options' that revolve around dialogue prove my point precisely in how restrictive and de-optioning dialogue 'options' are:

- Intimidate guard into opening door (using strength
- Make guard fall asleep by giving him a drink laced with some sedatives
- Become friends with the guard, making him open up for you
- Make the guard believe something is wrong somewhere else (i.e. village being attacked, kid being bullied, someone being robbed)
- Seduce guard
- Become a superior to the guard through a questline and ordering him to leave his post
- Become acquainted with the resident to invite you in
- Work for the resident so they invite you in
- Pretend to help the resident (conman)
- Make a fire somewhere nearby to alert the guard and make them move
Every single one of your options here involve the guard. The ones that don't simply transfer the options to other individuals (guards by another name). The situation you've created is that you're no longer using the door as gameplay, you've converted the door problem into a people vs people problem. Every aspect of the game is suddenly a talking heads scenario.

In the options I listed the talking heads scenario is but one option among many, in your scenario it's every option is a talking head scenario. However, you say you'd ideally have all these dialogue options available as well as the options I listed? Why? One talking solution is enough for the builds that will be using talking, why would anyone implement a game with one solution for all builds but then give one specific build, the talking build, 14 similar options? That's just confusing bloat.

- there to be a roof to climb on using a grapple hook and rope and a door to get in from
- to be able to use a sledgehammer to break the wall
The first of these two is just a variation of finding a back door and the second one here is just another version of bashing down the door, both flavour versions of the same thing, but no game needs to always have both those options simultaneously. Again, that would just be pointless bloat.

In Underrail for example, you can go into one house through multiple ways:
- Sneak past the manor guards and enter the lower floor
- Sneak past the manor guards and climb up (if enough agility) to the upper floor
- Befriend one or two of the residents who invite(s) you in
- Shoot your way through the guards and kill everyone in your way
Yes, the traditional triumvir of a sneak option, a talking option and a muscle option, and you'll notice that only one of those options is a talking option.

You could create 12 additional options easily in your head, but as these options all need to be programmed, it's not so simple.
Exactly my point. You will never encounter a computer game which satisfactorily provides dialogue options for every permutation of character you could build, they will always be dissatisfying forced events that you can never truly guess as to the ideal outcome for your chosen character.

Practical aspects of exploration, however, such as doors, are both easily feasible to implement and can easily perfectly match any chosen character. Hence a developer who concentrates on doors more than NPCs will always produce a 'better RPG' than someone who concentrates on NPCs over practical environmental choice.

Someone with low social skills, aka low charisma or low diplomacy, or whatever the game chooses to call it, should not even be seeing the options that higher charisma players see. Dialogue options in themselves are only relevant in an RPG to the specific classes that use dialogue skills.

And because the door scenario is a scenario that all players will face, that is where the development time should be in priority. Because very few people will see the dialogue options, what with them being only relevant to 1 or 2 classes tops, that aspect of the game inherently gets less development time priority.

Why not both? Name me an RPG that does both well. I guarantee you that any game you mention will either have shit combat or it'll be a short choose your own adventure and will rely entirely on your highly subjective appraisal of it's status as a 'good' RPG.
lackblogger is offline

lackblogger

lackblogger's Avatar
retired poster
Original Sin 2 Donor

#54

Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,951
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)

Default 

October 11th, 2019, 19:10
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
Just to clarify, dialogue by itself is not the issue here, the issue is dialogue choices being in some way related to RPGing and the character you chose to play. And how the options available never can or do equate with your build/character with any consistency.

Your expansive list of 'options' that revolve around dialogue prove my point precisely in how restrictive and de-optioning dialogue 'options' are:

Every single one of your options here involve the guard. The ones that don't simply transfer the options to other individuals (guards by another name). The situation you've created is that you're no longer using the door as gameplay, you've converted the door problem into a people vs people problem. Every aspect of the game is suddenly a talking heads scenario.

In the options I listed the talking heads scenario is but one option among many, in your scenario it's every option is a talking head scenario. However, you say you'd ideally have all these dialogue options available as well as the options I listed? Why? One talking solution is enough for the builds that will be using talking, why would anyone implement a game with one solution for all builds but then give one specific build, the talking build, 14 similar options? That's just confusing bloat.

The first of these two is just a variation of finding a back door and the second one here is just another version of bashing down the door, both flavour versions of the same thing, but no game needs to always have both those options simultaneously. Again, that would just be pointless bloat.
Well, unless the door is a talking door (which happens in some games too), it is hard to make the dialogue revolving around the door. That's like saying all of your options are simple varieties of the door. Unlock the door in your list is 4 out of your 12 options.

The talking options I mention are varieties of different ways to handle the guard using different skillsets just in the same way your door is being opened by different skillsets.

Making the guard fall asleep would require some kind of alchemy or chemistry skill. Seduction would require more charisma. Intimidation would be strength based or based on some intimidation skill, etc.

Yes, the traditional triumvir of a sneak option, a talking option and a muscle option, and you'll notice that only one of those options is a talking option.
Actually, I just split the options for sneak into two but didn't split the talking options into two. So 2 out of 5 are based on talking. Also, once inside the mansion you then are able to persuade the owner you can fix his tv which will give you access to the upper floor where you need to be. So the talkative options have follow ups.

Exactly my point. You will never encounter a computer game which satisfactorily provides dialogue options for every permutation of character you could build, they will always be dissatisfying forced events that you can never truly guess as to the ideal outcome for your chosen character.
To me that's the same with the door example though. If all you gave me were those options, I would personally not be interested in that game. It would mean every single door had the exact same method to be broken into, which after a while would be very boring to me. That's what I am trying to say. Having dialogues and quests give you additional options can make the game much more interesting. Not every door should be bashable or lockpickable or have an alternate entrance or any single one of your 12 options. Some doors should stop you from entering unless you work through the relevant quest/dialogue which could also have multiple options to sort….

Practical aspects of exploration, however, such as doors, are both easily feasible to implement and can easily perfectly match any chosen character. Hence a developer who concentrates on doors more than NPCs will always produce a 'better RPG' than someone who concentrates on NPCs over practical environmental choice.
So whilst I agree with some of what you say, I feel like making a game the way you describe it or seemingly are describing it to me, would result in a somewhat less fun experience.

Someone with low social skills, aka low charisma or low diplomacy, or whatever the game chooses to call it, should not even be seeing the options that higher charisma players see. Dialogue options in themselves are only relevant in an RPG to the specific classes that use dialogue skills.

And because the door scenario is a scenario that all players will face, that is where the development time should be in priority. Because very few people will see the dialogue options, what with them being only relevant to 1 or 2 classes tops, that aspect of the game inherently gets less development time priority.
But that's the same thing. If you play a sneaky character, you will be able to lockpick the door, but if you played a brute that option would never apply to you. If you played a talkative character then the option to speak to the guard should be possible.


Why not both? Name me an RPG that does both well. I guarantee you that any game you mention will either have shit combat or it'll be a short choose your own adventure and will rely entirely on your highly subjective appraisal of it's status as a 'good' RPG.
Well, since all games are subjective they will always be like that.
I just finished Underrail (well didn't play through Deep Caverns) and although it is mostly a game about combat it often does give your character multiple ways to solve problems.

Some rooms can be hacked into, lockpicked a container to find a key, kill an NPC to get the key, solve a quest to get the key from the NPC, pay the NPC, find a ventilation shaft and enter the room, …

Of course, it's not always possible to do that. I don't think it should be - as mentioned above. Some place should be locked for some characters. E.g. make a room unhackable and unbreakable where only having the key will open it.
Pladio is offline

Pladio

Pladio's Avatar
Guardian of Nonsense
RPGWatch Donor
Original Sin Donor

#55

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Manchester, United Kingdom
Posts: 6,264
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Send a message via MSN to Pladio

Default 

October 11th, 2019, 19:50
As per usual with you Pladio, it's getting very hard to tell what you're reading as literal and what you're reading as general principle.

Underrail isn't a talky game, it's a combat game that has some talking options. A single character one at that. Underrail was designed from a practical environmental standpoint rather than as a talk-fest, but you seem to be using it as your primary go-to for reasons why dialogue-options make an RPG.

No, not every option is always available for every door in the game, LOL, that was not meant as literal but as a description of principle, LOL.

You seem to be agreeing that talking options should only be available to characters who select talking classes and skills, which, as per usual with you, is exactly what I was saying but you are now arguing with me that class-based talking options are the equivalent of a game simply having talking options as a default for all characters and saying it's an RPG because it 'has options' regardless of class or skills?

I know this topic takes a lot of very precise language and it's often difficult to convey complex ideas in the written form, especially in just a couple of paragraphs, but do you really need me to detail the distinction between additional dialogue options for talkers and blanket dialogue options as a general rule when it comes to the concept of RPGs?

If you agree with the former, then you agree with me.
If you agree with the latter then that's not what you're describing.
lackblogger is offline

lackblogger

lackblogger's Avatar
retired poster
Original Sin 2 Donor

#56

Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,951
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)

Default 

October 12th, 2019, 02:37
Originally Posted by lackblogger View Post
As per usual with you Pladio, it's getting very hard to tell what you're reading as literal and what you're reading as general principle.

Underrail isn't a talky game, it's a combat game that has some talking options. A single character one at that. Underrail was designed from a practical environmental standpoint rather than as a talk-fest, but you seem to be using it as your primary go-to for reasons why dialogue-options make an RPG.

No, not every option is always available for every door in the game, LOL, that was not meant as literal but as a description of principle, LOL.

You seem to be agreeing that talking options should only be available to characters who select talking classes and skills, which, as per usual with you, is exactly what I was saying but you are now arguing with me that class-based talking options are the equivalent of a game simply having talking options as a default for all characters and saying it's an RPG because it 'has options' regardless of class or skills?

I know this topic takes a lot of very precise language and it's often difficult to convey complex ideas in the written form, especially in just a couple of paragraphs, but do you really need me to detail the distinction between additional dialogue options for talkers and blanket dialogue options as a general rule when it comes to the concept of RPGs?

If you agree with the former, then you agree with me.
If you agree with the latter then that's not what you're describing.
I think I mostly agree with you. I am not sure with "additional" being the right word, as I think it should be part of the system, just as much as lockpicking or bashing is.
Not sure what you mean though by "blanket" dialogue options ?


Also, the only reason for using Underrail is because it's a fresh example in my mind, having played it recently. It is designed from a 'practical' standpoint but without the dialogue options, would, in my opinion, become a fairly unfun game, which I would not have played as much.
Pladio is offline

Pladio

Pladio's Avatar
Guardian of Nonsense
RPGWatch Donor
Original Sin Donor

#57

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Manchester, United Kingdom
Posts: 6,264
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Send a message via MSN to Pladio

Default 

October 12th, 2019, 14:59
Fun thing is, one of the major reasons Arcanum is praised for the dialogues is the fact that your character build DOES matter. Try playing a stupid character, it's a whole different experience (in regards to dialogues. Not the poor combat, that's still the same. )
TomRon is offline

TomRon

TomRon's Avatar
SasqWatch
RPGWatch Donor
Original Sin Donor

#58

Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Sweden
Posts: 2,839
Mentioned: 16 Post(s)

Default 

October 12th, 2019, 20:25
Originally Posted by Pladio View Post
I think I mostly agree with you. I am not sure with "additional" being the right word, as I think it should be part of the system, just as much as lockpicking or bashing is.
Not sure what you mean though by "blanket" dialogue options ?


Also, the only reason for using Underrail is because it's a fresh example in my mind, having played it recently. It is designed from a 'practical' standpoint but without the dialogue options, would, in my opinion, become a fairly unfun game, which I would not have played as much.
Additional is exactly the right word because dialogue is designed and created from a completely different development routine. Dialogue has to be individually written for each scenario and form a part of base text of the game - so:

1. Does the additional content have to be written by the same guy who wrote the main base text - does this mean the game's writer also has to be an expert on all the classes and skills in the game? How many writers will be both experts at narrative and experts at technical option-creation? [as opposed to a practical option like a door which can all be done by the practical implementation team]

2. What if, down the line, the technical team discover that they simply can't implement certain dialogue 'options', either because of technical or time limitation? What get's cut and why? And how much of a knock-on effect will that have? [compared to, for example, practical options, such as Backstabbing which when cut from the game doesn't really impact anything else]

3. The game can function perfectly fine without any dialogue options, just with a main narrative and generically uniform NPCs (uniform to all characters they meet, not that they all say the exact same thing, obviously). Since dialogue is limitless, any option you add to the base text will be an addition, so… how much will you be adding? How long is a piece of string? Infinity options is never going to happen is it. But if you set a precedent that dialogue options should be the main priority of an RPG, what exactly is the limit? A dialogue 'option' for every single class during every single conversation? [compared to a practical scenario where the door has pretty much an upper limit to the number of options from which you then can literally copy-paste similar options throughout the game].

'Blanket' dialogue options are like you see in Dragon Age 2, yet another reason why that game got such a bad rep… the 'dialogue wheel', whereby it didn't matter who you were nor who you were playing, you always had to pick from three or four utterly bizzare dialogue options. [most of which, in the case of DA2 had fuck all impact anyway, so it's a the extreme example, but most RPGs who tout dialogue-options commit this sin to at least some degree at some point, those that are not offensive are those for which it is just for flavour and do not pretend otherwise].

I agree with you that dialogue-options add something extra to a game and that Underrail would be less of a game without them. However, Underrail would never have been a game I'd have brought into this conversation, so could you think of a different game that is primarily praised for it's dialogue if you wish to continue conversing? For the sake of preventing confusion of the topic. Underrail was a game created primarily by one person from a practical design perspective with no time limits to production and only used a single character, the dialogue options in that game were most certainly 'added' and it does not claim to be an RPG based solely on it's merits for dialogue.
Last edited by lackblogger; October 12th, 2019 at 20:48.
lackblogger is offline

lackblogger

lackblogger's Avatar
retired poster
Original Sin 2 Donor

#59

Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,951
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)

Default 

October 12th, 2019, 20:47
Originally Posted by TomRon View Post
Fun thing is, one of the major reasons Arcanum is praised for the dialogues is the fact that your character build DOES matter. Try playing a stupid character, it's a whole different experience (in regards to dialogues. Not the poor combat, that's still the same. )
It goes waaay beyond just build in Arcanum. It makes a big deal about how NPCs even react to your race. This was something that was a talking point some 20 years ago as RPGs felt on top of the world and right at the cutting edge of technological development. People thought "Hey, wouldn't it be great if NPCs actually reacted to which race you are!", and not just placidly, but mechanically. They went on: "Why would an Elf barkeeper want a Dwarf in their Public House, what's the point of race beyond just some starting stats and aesthetic appearance?"

I'm sure you can imagine the conversations. All hail the ever deeper dive into ever more pedantic minutia. Is Arcanum a better game because they spent so much time making sure all their NPCs were racist, or is it a worse game because by doing so they neglected the more important aspects, like… I dunno… the freakin' combat FFS

And that's the kind of thing that really annoys me. The people who invested themselves into these kind of minutia demands 20 years ago are the ones who cling to this notion that Arcanum was the one game which answered their prayers and that Arcanum is good because it has sims-like racism and fuck everything else. They completely forgot the game is a fantasy concept, not a realism concept, and even if it was a realism concept that doesn't mean all fantasy beings adhere to carbon-copy lore regarding how the 'races' get on with each other, individually rather than nationalistically. For me, this kind of stuff is neither realism nor fantasy, it's just opinionated minutia generated by people obsessed about something that really doesn't matter. At the very least, it's waaaaaay down on the game design priority list, like 1,000,001st.

But when someone says, on paper, Arcanum actually reacts to your build, yes, you can't deny it, but does it even do that well? IMO, no.

I'm not the only person to have issues with Arcanum, it's a very common thing. If you want a quick introduction of what it looks like when someone who doesn't like Arcanum is 'persuaded' to play it, then take an hour out of your life and watch Spoony have a crack at it (it's only one vid):

loading…


I'm not promoting spoony, I just post him as an example of someone who loves RPGs [his Ultima series vids are sort of legendary], but simply can't bare to stay more than an hour in Arcanum. Pretty much all of his points ring true for me as well.
lackblogger is offline

lackblogger

lackblogger's Avatar
retired poster
Original Sin 2 Donor

#60

Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 2,951
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Arcanum - Unofficial Fan Patch 1.5.1
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 02:18.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
vBulletin Security provided by DragonByte Security (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright by RPGWatch