Tamriel Foundry

Realism in NPCS

I have always loved the ES franchise for its inner minded role playing and Realism. I am hoping it continues in ESO. But the online limitations may not do so.

 

I don't suppose NPCS will actually walk around into a tavern and start talking to another NPC? Or go to sleep at night and read books at the mages library. Examples.

 

 

Always loved that.

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20 Replies
  1. #1

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    @jenrais There probably will be limitations to some NPC schedules in TESO, for the convenience of some of them staying in one place so you could find them after you've done a quest for them, for example...even when it's night-time.

    Which makes me wonder if there will be Quest Markers in TESO...these would make it easier to find them, & give an excuse for NPCs to have realistic daily schedules.

    However, I'm not sure Zenimax will give too much of a "helping hand" during any of the Quests in TESO.  We'll see!

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  2. #2

    Atropos

    Administrator3186 Posts
    GarlasMalatar wrote on December 4, 2012

    Which makes me wonder if there will be Quest Markers in TESO…these would make it easier to find them, & give an excuse for NPCs to have realistic daily schedules.

    NPCs who offer quests or other important instructions have a sort of goldish glow surrounding them when you target them, or move nearby. It's hard to miss, but not too over the top. NPCs who simply offer flavor dialogue or chat have a neutral blue glow. I think they mentioned that you can turn off these sorts of "quest assist" features in UI settings if you want to increase immersion.

    Creator of Ashen Foundry and Tamriel Foundry. Former guildmaster of Entropy Rising. Economist and MMO enthusiast.

  3. #3

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    Awesome...I must talk to "shiny" people in order to get Quests.

    Completely forgot for a minute there that Atropos actually got a chance to play a little bit of the game in its "Pre-Alpha" stage.

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  4. #4

    m aIq

    Member250 Posts

    @garlasmalatar c'mon man everyone knows quest-giving makes you radioactive...

  5. #5

    Baba Yaga

    Member203 Posts

    One way to handle roaming quest givers is to have some GUI control on the quest log that allows you highlight that quest's NPC on your map and/or compass.  This may not fit into the style of the single-player ES games, but if it reduces the calls in local chat for "Help me find NPC X!", it may be an option.

    DAOC, Palomides, Midgard, EpiK: Baba Yaga

    COH, Virtue, The Dawn Patrol:  Cassandra, Pixie Blade

    Elder Scrolls Online, Aldmeri Dominion, The Noore (formerly Bosmer Brotherhood of Archers)

  6. #6

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    @Baba Yaga That would definitely be most helpful!  I guess they could work like "Custom" Markers (The blue ones in Oblivion that you could place)

    @m aIq Here's to hoping that completing quests will reduce levels of radioactivity in Tamriel!

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  7. #7

    Rial

    Moderator2939 Posts

    I have to admit that, too me, the NPCs in Morrowind felt far more realistic than Oblivion and Skyrim for two points.

    1. They had loads and loads of dialog. Not just all the quest related stuff and some random rumors and soemtimes a few individual sentences, but giant walls of text about many topics. Their job, the place they live in, etc.

    2. They didn't bombard you with unrealistic sentences whenever you pass them. They didn#t akt like I was already talking to them (like many Skyrim NPCs do) and didn't sing praise about my high skills every other minute, but limited themselves to "go away" and "what do you want?" in a manner that befits the uncomfortably close distance the player walks by.

    Alos, they didn't randomly stumble into quest relevant dialog and drown out the voice and subtitles of relevant NPCs with their irrelevant dribble.

    Relax, I’m only being serious.

  8. #8

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    @Rial I actually liked Morrowind NPCs for all of those things, as well.  Maybe in TESO, the "common" NPCs that don't have Quests to send you on should still have many things to say, even if it's just stuff related to their town that they live in...or they could have Quest-relevant things to say, and opinions to express about the Factions that govern their territories, among many other things.

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  9. #9

    Maatkara

    Member156 Posts

    I hope that they will as well, @Rial and @GarlasMalatar. However, I suspect they won't approach the detail that was given by the NPCs in Morrowind. Not for the majority of NPCs anyway. I think this because, having watched other people playing Skyrim, the modern game audience just isn't interested. They want the info now. Fast. To the point. When I am playing I pretty much talk to everyone I come across, but I have noticed others tend not to.

     

    Which, is a real shame as you miss out on a lot of fun things. I don't know if most people who play this game are like me and will take the time to listen to/read all the conversation topics, or if they just click the quest related options. I suspect that as the developers know people tend to have short attention spans these days, even if they do include some opinions and random things to say they will be more like Skyrim than Morrowind.

  10. #10

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    @Maatkara You know what I REALLY want in a "realistic" NPC? The kind that I can still talk to while they're suspended in mid-air after falling from 1,000 feet high-up...(like that Tarhiel guy from Morrowind)

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  11. #11

    Lordshayne

    Member1636 Posts

    NPC's in TES were NEVER realistic until Skyrim, but even then I still needed a few mods to make it realistic. Hopefully we'll see an improvement in ESO as it is an MMO and has quite a bit of work into it.

  12. #12

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    You could argue that NPCs were more realistic in some ways over others in each ES game.  Most of the NPCs in Morrowind had a whole lot to talk about, yet most of them had limited movement patterns & didn't have "realistic schedules", per se...but at least they were informative, & interesting to talk to! (Oblivion had some funny & interesting NPCs, as well)

    Then again, both Sheogorath & M'aiq in particular, were always funny characters to converse with. (I know M'aiq in Oblivion certainly didn't follow the schedule of regular NPCs...searching for those calipers, & running at speeds that the player couldn't hope to match, unless you used the Console)

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  13. #13

    Rial

    Moderator2939 Posts
    Lordshayne wrote on December 5, 2012

    NPC’s in TES were NEVER realistic until Skyrim

    "Why, that guy I just walked up to while he listening to the mage trainer's instructions clearly came to me to hold a lengthy discussion about my enchantments. I'll stand right here and tell him all he wants to know, because just being neear me clearly is a sign of high interest."

    I think Skyrim introduced "realsim" features that actually took away realism. When did you walk up to some stranger engaged in a discussion with someone else and told him about your last bakery visit without being asked?

    Relax, I’m only being serious.

  14. #14

    NordJitsu

    Member449 Posts

    @Rial

    I agree with you. But there is a trade off between fully voiced NPCs and NPC depth. You can't have as much dialogue when it is all voiced.

    But being fully voiced doesn't add to "realism." It just makes it easier for lazy/casual gamers who don't like to read.

    I would prefer more back story even if it meant I had to read it. Sadly, we already know this game is fully voiced suggesting that dialogue will be more shallow. It's a trade-off and both have positives and negatives.

  15. #15

    m aIq

    Member250 Posts

    I think there is a confusion between "realism" and "world immersion" or "depth". Having NPCs say more is the opposite of realism. If you walk up to someone on the street and ask about anything beyond basic directions or what time it is, they'll probably look at you like you're crazy and keep walking. Unlocking more dialogue based on the number of times you talked to the NPC or having NPC in taverns be chattier would be realistic, but running into a town, talking to the first person you meet and learning the darkest secrets the townsfolk have to offer is not realism.

  16. #16

    Umaril the Unfeathered

    Member3404 Posts

    @m aIq Actually, in Morrowind, plenty of NPCs will treat you like you're crazy for asking them certain things (or just not talk about them) if they don't know or like you/their Disposition towards you is too low.

    I do agree with what you say about unlocking dialogue depending on how many times you've talked to certain NPCs.

    *Formerly known by the username ”GarlasMalatar”*

    ”What is better? To be born good, or to overcome your evil nature through great effort?”Paarthurnax

    ”Shanta, ehlno.  Tyavoy balangua!” ~ Umaril the Unfeathered

    ”Welcome, Nerevar. Together we shall speak for the Law and the Land and shall drive the mongrel dogs of the Empire from Morrowind.” ~ Dagoth Ur

  17. #17

    Wyrek0re

    Member25 Posts

    That's very nice... and what about if you need to kill a NPC... will it affect other players quests?

    If one of us has to die, i hope it’s you! 

    Arcen eth er Fregath, Haslil Rein! 

  18. #18

    Skyrif

    Member30 Posts

    We should not be allowed to kill NPCs in major cities but the game will lose quality

     

  19. #19

    Yashamon

    Member78 Posts

    It's ok if NPC deosn't talk a lot, as long as there is possiblity that he can talk a lot. I mean, he won't say anything just as you run into him, but how many NPC's in Skyrim could actually tell full story. In Skyrim i always had feeling NPC's are talking only exactly what you want them to say. No more, no less. If you run into person, he'll mostly give you too much info, or too little. Many people will go offtopic before they come to part you need. NPC's in Morrowind were much more unique, and you could read one's dialoge for 30 minutes. When did you have conversation with NPC in Skyrim longer than 10 minutes? Plus note that you can read faster than people speak. Of course, as @NordJitsu said, it's trade off for voiced dialog.

     

    But there is other part on realism I liked in Morrowind most, was ok in Oblivion and disappointed me in Skyrim. It's ammount of unique NPC's. Like already mentioned Tarhiel, Morrowind was full of NPC's that were in strange situations, or were just crazy, angry or whatever. Oblivion had few of it's NPCs as well, but i doubt Skyrim has 3 unique non-importaint-quest-related NPCs.Remember when you run into naked Nord who was charmed and robbed by witch? Or another one that was paralyzed. Two Dunmer friends that were lost, or Dunmer piligrim asking for help. Girl that fell in love with bandit, or Merchant that lost his guar. Skyrim's closest to that is woman standing if front of tomb, waiting for you come there so you could help her kill few undead. NPC without proper background story is, well, like robot. It is true some people don't have much of background, like farmers who just farm whole their life, but don't tell me that nobody in whole province has background.

          Love all, trust me!

  20. #20

    TR3LON1ST

    Member76 Posts

    I would like to throw in another term here. "Authenticity" Maybe this is what you are actually looking for. Realism is dependent on how one perceives reality and depth is also a subjective quality. So I guess we are really looking for authentic characters that are not supposed to break the illusion of the virtual reality. A sentence too much and we notice the trigger mechanism that made the NPC say that.

    I would really love to see vibrant and active centers (towns, villages, cities). NPCs that don't have anything to contribute to the player's story quest but still wake up in the morning, do their chores and return to have dinner with the family in the evening. I would like to see citizens traverse a distant bridge that is not accessable by the player. I would like to see a farmer making his way from a small village to a big city, inviting players to accompany him - without players having to trigger the actual event. It could become known to everybody that "Farmer Bob" goes to the town market everyday around 10.

    I am not a fan of pointers, glowing NPCs and ultra-informative maps in fantasy MMOs. I guess I don't have a problem with these things in a science-fiction environment but in fantasy MMOs, as I mentioned above, it reduces immersion. I come way back from the "olden days" (Everquest 1) where people had to actually check every plattform in the Wood-Elf city Kelethin to find the quest giver. The chat was filled with people looking for something, selling something, informing about a rare spawn at some location. I prefer that environment over the troll-filled MMOs today

    I would love to see a storytelling environment that I am visiting, that does not try to give me the idea of being created for me, that does not lead the way that is supposed to be unknown to me and a surrounding that is inviting precisely because it is challenging and not easy.

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