Tacticular Cancer: We'll have your balls

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How do you like your companions?

Discussion in 'What Remains' started by Surf Solar, Dec 4, 2011.

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How do you like your companions?

  1. Give me few but very detailed members.

    20 vote(s)
    80.0%
  2. I want a pool out of human ressources to choose from.

    5 vote(s)
    20.0%
  1. Surf Solargender: ⚧ cannot into womynz

    Surf Solar
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    As I was telling in another topic, the game will feauture full control of your party members, opposing to Fallout1/2, and more like the Infinity Engine games (that takes/took us long time already).

    What I want to know...


    Would you rather prefer MANY possible companions, with rather limited personalities, or fewer of these personalities which allow easily swapping between party members?

    In short, it's rather a storyfag vs. combatfag discussion, but I'd like somehow to combine it. There are most of the WR companions ready, they are elaborate but few. Would you prefer quality over quantity, or vice versa?
     
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  2. Jaesungender: ⚧ Fabulous Moderator Patron

    Jaesun
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    I'd rather have a few well defined NPC's.

    Also WFT. If Ian isn't shooting you in the back, it's not a Fallout game FFS! ;)
     
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  3. kaizokugender: ⚧ Arcane

    kaizoku
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    Storyfag reporting in :salute:

    One of the grudges I have with ToEE is the lack of personality among NPCs... they are just NPC #x, nothing more.
    I'd rather have someone with character on my team. Someone that will speak his/her mind and maybe even carry some baggage.

    Let them be psyco, double crossing, problem causers, problem plagued, retarded and funny, smart and cynic, and sometimes... even loyal and useful.
     
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  4. Eternautagender: ⚧ Novice

    Eternauta
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    Storyfag. I'd also like companions to have quests related to them (kind of like in New Vegas), or at least the possibilty of making them "change their status" after a deep conversation with them or after treating them in some way for a period of time (I am thinking about Dak'kon from PS:T).

    Also not knowing if your companion will betray you after you leave town with him sounds interesting. Could lead to different side quests.
     
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  5. CrazyLoongender: ⚧ Prophet

    CrazyLoon
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    Few but detailed. Quality over quantity.
     
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  6. Excidiumgender: ⚧ P. banal

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    Either way is fine for me, but I voted on fewer companions.
     
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  7. Awor Szurkrarzgender: ⚧ Arcane In My Safe Space

    Awor Szurkrarz
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  8. Stingergender: ⚧ Arcane

    Stinger
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    It sounds like your game is generally focused on being a "storyfag" type- in that case fewer but well defined companions is probably the better approach (and my personal preference).
     
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  9. DraQgender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    DraQ
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    Combination of both. Few remarkable ones, a good number of less so.

    :storyfag-in-a-sandbox:
     
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  10. oscargender: ⚧ Tacticular Staff

    oscar
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    Detail is always great but I see no reason why cheap grunts with little or no backstory or dialogue can't be employed for someone who purely needs cannon fodder or a bit more firepower (for a price of course, preferably a daily one).
     
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  11. Grunkergender: ⚧ RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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    Codex 2012 Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Characterization is the key to any good story. Thus, if story is to play an important part, characters are key.

    I like interesting characters (so much so that it often takes precedence over the main storyline for me), so I voted for the first option :)
     
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  12. oscargender: ⚧ Tacticular Staff

    oscar
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    Only thing is that all characters being interesting and adding to the story is that it encourages save scumming because otherwise you feel your missing out on some of the story.

    This becomes a problem in a game like PST where even one party member's death is a significant blow to the game's plot [I only just found out after some investigation about the 'Raise Dead' ability].
     
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  13. Make America Great Again The Brazilian Slaughtergender: ⚧ Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    Maybe both? Mercenaries and Companions?

    Mercenaries would be hired guns with some dialogue. They're here to get their part of the loot and get back home to live their normal lifes. They have some dialogue, mainly about what they know (and can tell) about certain topics, like some places where they went, their previous bosses, some baddies they shot at, etc. They're not your bros, they're your hired guns. You have to keep them happy and well-paid so they won't put a bullet on the back of your head, or scram with the loot. They're not as good in combat as most companions, but they're the mainstay of the bread and butter combat.

    Companions are interesting persons who, for reasons know or unknown (vengeance, refuge, companionship, loot, wanderlust, mission of their own) travel with you. They should be deep persons, interesting and engaging companions with their own life stories and objectives. They also should have unique personnal abilties, dialogue and knowlodge. They also play their parts in some quests and in the main quest.

    I think the Merc-Companion rate in the gameworld should be 4 merc per every 1 companion. A good idea would be making Companions cost 2 CH per Companion while Mercs cost 1 CH per companion.
     
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  14. Eternautagender: ⚧ Novice

    Eternauta
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    After reading other replies and especially The Brazilian Slaughter's, I have a different idea about this.

    The PC could have some people travelling with him/her. Some of them would be what TBS called "Mercenaries" and some would be what he called "Companions".

    However, it's not a matter of "if you pay for a service they're offering and/or you have to give them some of the loot, they're mercs - but if they decide to follow you for the heck of it or for some quest, they're companions".

    Instead of that I like the idea of, like I said, not really knowing who's travelling with you (during your first playthroughs at least). This means that for example, you could hire a mercenary (and talking to him would lead to simple "yeah yeah I get payed for shootin' baddies" dialogue lines) but while having him in your party there's a possibility of getting a special encounter with a person who has hired him in the past and wants to kill him, or make him pay some money the merc had stolen, or make him hand a special item the merc has been hiding all this time.

    Of course this is just an example. But I think I makes the idea clear.
     
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  15. Surf Solargender: ⚧ cannot into womynz

    Surf Solar
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    That's quite some good idea Brazilian Slaughter! I think this would be the best middleground between the two extremes. I think I'll go down that route. :)

    Oscar - isn't missing out parts of (side)stories and branching what raises the replayability? I can see where you are coming from and agree that it's a major deal in PS:T (since there are more companions than you have slots in your party) - but to me it only meant that I can have a different team at my next playthrough so I have new content. That's what I wanted to achieve for WR too, only that the backstories an tie ins of the companions aren't THAT elaborate as they are in PS:T. Currently there are 7 companions ( I haven't finished all of them though), with their own quests, some decions you have to take for them (which means this character will develop different thoughout the game) and so on. I have tried to keep the "don't do that or I will leave the party!11" to a minimum, as I find it kinda annoying when such stuff happened in, say Baldurs Gate and so on.

    @ Grunker - agreed. More personalities also means more possible actions/reactions.
     
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  16. kaizokugender: ⚧ Arcane

    kaizoku
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    I like this. :thumbsup:

    True. But it would add to replayability. Especially if there is interaction between NPCs. How fun would it be to realize that 2 NPCs can't stand each other and eventually one gets punched or shot? :)

    BTW, SS what will be the party size? 1 PC + 3 NPCs?

    I mostly agree with what you said, but I think the difference between Mercs and Comps should be defined by the interaction you have with them and not by their job.
    Suppose you hire or convince 2 mercs to come with you to rob someone and split the loot. You can talk with both of them fine. After you complete the mission merc A goes on with his life, while merc B hints that he's ready for another job or even tag along with you.
    What I mean is, there shouldn't be a house with a sign "cannon fodder for hire! non relevant NPCs here".
    The fact that an NPC can be a companion should be made through dialog and not with some mercs-cant-be-comps axiom. Note: this is a possible background for a Comp, I'm not saying that all Comps should have a Merc background!

    It should be irrelevant which have better skills if mercs or comps. But in fact, it makes sense that it's the weaker guys that want to tag along as they need strength in numbers. Another reason for this is that if mercs are visibly weaker there would be no point for you to hire them.
    Finally, mercs should not be seen as summons. Hire merc, get them as human shields until they die and don't have to pay them anything. And then repeat. (what I said in the other thread about having some AI makes even more sense considering this)

    IMO that merc-comp rate doesn't make much sense. It shouldn't be something mathematic. It really depends on how it fits the game.
    And regarding hire fees, it really depends. You could simply make an offer before hiring. Or decide to split the loot of what you find. (barter & speech into play)
    Comps shouldn't be getting paid. The idea is good in theory, but it just causes annoyance. Asking for a cut when you decide to ditch them sounds good (if you get them back or not is another story). And also having them being wary of always having some equipment on sounds good as well. (consider ToEE, NPCs will only give out their equipment from their inventory after some time)
     
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  17. Make America Great Again Clockwork Knightgender: ⚧ Arcane

    Clockwork Knight
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    That's just a general outline since logically there should be many more people willing to join you because they'll get paid than because they care that much about you or your quest. Also because you don't care as much about random mercenaries as you care about your friends, so you'll probably bring them when you know you're about to get into a nasty fight, which will inevitably end up with some of them dying.
     
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  18. Make America Great Again The Brazilian Slaughtergender: ⚧ Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    The question is that our inner storyfags demmand nice companions that will help us with cool skills and be cool characters that will do catchy combat taunts and give us hilarious dialogue and situations during our gameplay, while our inner combatfags demand that we need to lubrificate the gears of progress with the blood of our cannonfodder.

    The Mercs and Comps idea balances both out. It still leaves space for surprises, though, like Mercs that actually are Companions.
     
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  19. Major_Blackhartgender: ⚧ Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    It's not so much that I'm an inner story fag (though I enjoy FF6) but rather it's that I genuinely can't stand blank slate NPC party members similar in the vein of TOEE. Hell, Wizardry 8 PC's had more character than NPC's of TOEE. But I digress.
    It's not just character, however. I want someone to have some sort of motivation for joining me, like a real motivation, not just 'oh, you're going here? So am I! Let's travel together and while we're doing that I'll carry a ton of shit for you and fight dangerous battles with you that I might not have to do so otherwise.'
    And no, I'm not talking about 'I was wronged by the same badguy monster man that you were. Let's fight it together and be victorious, then commence with the buttsecks.'

    I'm talking about something similar to a character with real depth: a retired soldier that has nightmares about the things he's done, waking up screaming in the night. His neighbors already can't stand him, but he's down right dangerous as he's got a few psychological problems, and as one youth learned the hard way, a person can't sneak up on him without there being consequences. He just can't seem to adjust to life like it was before the war, before the killings. Even his wife is a stranger to him, and he resents her for it, he hates her and his children for his own inabilities. For him, joining you is about escaping a prison of normalcy, or maybe a chance to live like a soldier again with structure, or maybe it's to some inner desire to sate some growing bloodlust , or shit, maybe he just recently killed someone accidentally and hid the body and is now terrified of getting found out. It might be just something as simple as the fact that he hates himself for terrifying his family all the time and wants to get away from them for their own sake, which is making the wrong mistake for the right reasons (and even having the chance to convince him of this).

    Give him a real reason for joining, not just I'm waiting for X caravan to show up at Y location like it was with Ian. Then give him a real reason for staying. What's the point of buying a fella's that amounts to a few hundred gold when you're going to be essentially using him for the rest of the adventure? Kind of a stupid mechanism and reason for sticking around. Give me 300 and I work for you for a long time. Not good enough.
     
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  20. kaizokugender: ⚧ Arcane

    kaizoku
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    This is pretty cool background.
    However in this game setting I think most characters are just trying to survive and wanting a better life. But OTOH you have to be a fool to leave the comfort zone of your town and adventure into the wasteland.
     
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  21. Major_Blackhartgender: ⚧ Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    That's why the NPC needs a good reason not only to leave with the PC but also to stay. What's to stop him from leaving once he reaches big city? He needs some sort of character growth while he's with the PC, a way of bonding with the character, so that maybe he sees the group as his new comfort zone.
     
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  22. Grunkergender: ⚧ RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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    CF's post makes a lot of sense except I feel Bioware often - and that goes for Dragon Age as well - does what CF suggests horribly wrong.

    The important thing is that the companions are connected to the story. All too often Bioware NPCs are like a "side story" in themselves. It's like Bioware RPGs consist of two main plots - "THE PLOT" and "THE COMPANIONS".

    Companions are there to broaden and deepen the story, as such they should for all intents and purposes be part of and deeply connected to it :)

    Hope that made sense.
     
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  23. Major_Blackhartgender: ⚧ Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    That does. In your opinion, did the characters from FONV (hate to use that as an example, but it's the most recent I can think of) add to the main story at all or did they not have enough to do with it? Some were BS I think (most with regards to contributing to the main story) but still they had halfway decent backgrounds, etc.
     
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  24. kaizokugender: ⚧ Arcane

    kaizoku
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    I'm ok with either way. As long as their interactions/dialog are interesting and give them character, I'm happy.
    But I guess it does enrich the story if some of the NPCs (having all NPCs would be unrealistic IMO) are connected to it in some way. Revenge? An hidden agenda? Somewhere along the story they will do something that will affect the course of things?
     
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  25. Grunkergender: ⚧ RPG Codex Ghost Patron

    Grunker
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    It's more complex than that, in my mind. It's not just NPC A has a tie to MAIN PLOT. It's "why does NPC A matter? Why is he/she in the story? Why does he/she follow you? Why are we supposed to care?"

    You can fashion the greatest character ever written and ultimately fail because he/she makes no sense in the story you are trying to tell :)

    That's mainly my point. Give the NPCs a reason to be in the story, to be involved with the PC, that goes deeper than "you completed this side-mission for them so now they follow you 4ever"
     
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