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#567782 19/08/15 01:25 PM
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I was expecting to see this request here, but to my surprise, there none!

With the interesting RP dialogs that party members sometimes have, it felt like the romance option was missing. The traits like romantic, heartless etc are perfect for some kind of a romance system. I believe that it ads much more depth to your party, and enriches the RP even further. I remember when I was playing Dragon Age: Origins, the combat and skill system was so boring, but the dialogs, story... and the romance is what kept me playing for days. I wanted to know how the forbidden love my party members had was going to end up. The characters felt much more alive.

I prefer a romance system based on the character traits, and one that does not affect the gameplay in any way. Of course, any other suggestions are welcome. I wonder what Larian thinks about this.

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To be clear this is my esoteric attempt at romance for Divinity Original Sin. I take all credit/blame for it.

http://larian.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=62811&Number=555974#Post555974

gbnf #567841 21/08/15 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by gbnf
To be clear this is my esoteric attempt at romance for Divinity Original Sin. I take all credit/blame for it.

http://larian.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Main=62811&Number=555974#Post555974


Nice topic, I enjoyed reading it. I am also surprised as of how only a few people ever came up with romances, I thought it was a big part of RP. I know, a lot of mainstream games have it now, but still...

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RPG romances have been quite controversial since Bioware decided all their games need 5+ of them (8 in DA:I!). I think RPG romance is fine in general, but when there's a bunch of them in a game, inevitably their quality and significance declines. A couple detailed, interesting progressions of a relationship are far more impactful than 8 shallow "press A enough times for sex" companions.

Not 100% sure what you mean by "romance based on character traits." You mean, like, if you're selfish, heartless, independent,, etc. you'll lose out on a chance for a romance with someone looking for a loving person (more generally, you need to have, say, 6/10 of the appropriate, compatible traits for the romance to be possible)? I think that's okay, but good dialog is the number one way to make a good romance.

I actually think there's nothing wrong with tieing some kind of gameplay effect to romance, but it should be a pro/con kind of thing. Like, say you gain some kind of bonus when you're in sight of your loved one (if it's a companion), but a minor debuff whenever you see them take damage. Nothing significant, but enough to convey a sense of love. And if you damage them too many times with AoE attacks or what have you, the relationship ends.

On an unrelated note, is the game ideas section on the uservoice site gone? Guess they just want pledge rewards.

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I guess they didn't want 'Adult mode' or whatever.

Also, DA:I, and even DA:O's romances weren't a given. I think there was only 1 'press A to have sex' option in DA:O and that was quest related. But otherwise, was a lot of relationship building that was involved in those games.

If you want a 'Press A to have sex' game, go play God of War. In the first game, in the very first level you can do this an unlimited number of times!

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Originally Posted by Baardvark

On an unrelated note, is the game ideas section on the uservoice site gone? Guess they just want pledge rewards.


I can still see both sections on the uservoice side, i.e., the pledge rewards and the game ideas.

Elwyn #567858 22/08/15 09:20 PM
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Last night (for a little while, anyway) the link for the Game Ideas page was redirecting back to the Pledge Rewards page.

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It appears they re-instated that section. Maybe it was just a problem with uservoice at the time?


Last edited by Haleseen; 22/08/15 09:21 PM. Reason: cus that worked so well :/
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I admit I really wanted something in DOS, but all I got was "they went their separate ways...", and I have no idea why.

Would love to see some more effort into it. Honestly it's one of the reasons why I never got PoE (that and guns, and no exp from quests, etc.) Overall the game just had more negatives and positives so I skipped it. I thought DOS was supposed to have something, but like I said got nothing.

Would love to see something in DOS2 and would like a little more guidance as to whether romance is succeeding or not.

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Originally Posted by LeBurns
I admit I really wanted something in DOS, but all I got was "they went their separate ways...", and I have no idea why.

Would love to see some more effort into it. Honestly it's one of the reasons why I never got PoE (that and guns, and no exp from quests, etc.) Overall the game just had more negatives and positives so I skipped it. I thought DOS was supposed to have something, but like I said got nothing.

Would love to see something in DOS2 and would like a little more guidance as to whether romance is succeeding or not.

Same here. When D:OS was first pitched, they told us that the romance between the two characters would be like at least somewhat important to the game.

I really kind of didn't find that to be the case, and was somewhat... disappointed.

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Imagine a BioWare romance... now imagine that being forced upon you in co-op with a player you might not even know, or a good friend... Now imagine if, BioWarian style, you're guided into having sex with your good friend.

Would that be... maybe... awkward? Or do you guys think that would be awesome?

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Originally Posted by Hassat Hunter
Imagine a BioWare romance... now imagine that being forced upon you in co-op with a player you might not even know, or a good friend... Now imagine if, BioWarian style, you're guided into having sex with your good friend.

Would that be... maybe... awkward? Or do you guys think that would be awesome?

I think that would be fucking amazing. I can only imagine having an awesome time laughing my ass off if that happened in my game.

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The game really is designed to be played with friends anyway (though whether there's more or less awkward than your character's romance with strangers is debatable).

Sounds like there's a good chance for romances to show up, considering how important the relationship between the characters is, and from what one of the writer's was saying on the RPGcodex.

http://www.rpgcodex.net/content.php?id=10045

Pertinent section (honestly, pretty funny at parts):


Romances​

Gameplay: So if you talk about acting like real characters, that means real emotions and interactions with each other. I've already asked about romance options, for example. You have plans to have it in there?

Kieron: Yeah... yeah!

Gameplay: Can you give some other examples about how they can interact with each other on an emotional level? Quarrels, fights... what else can we expect?

Kieron: I'm not sure what it will look like, but there will be a relationship system in there. It will have to be in there for the romance anyway. But about non-romantic options, I have no idea.

Watch: Why are there romantic options in the game?

Kieron: Why?

Bubbles: Yes, wonderful question. [Even the Watch can have one from time to time.]

Watch: Yes. I don't know why. So why are you trying to put romantic elements in this game?

Sarah: Roleplay. A lot of... uhm... RPG players want to feel like they can, uhm... kind of... have a full experience. When you choose to play the role of somebody, what would that character do? Would that character have a certain feeling about a character in their party? Uhm... ...you kinda want... as many options as possible to be able to live out the story that you wanna build. Uhm... i think romance is, like, not necessarily a required part of it, but it depends on what kind of story you wanna build, what kind of character you wanna play, I think. And, uhm, I was surprised actually, but the desire for this is a lot stronger than I thought it was, the romantic options.

Watch: Of course, often it's very childish or often very limited: you have gay relationships and you can change sex in real life. So where's the limit? What do you define as being romantic or not?

Kieron: Well, I guess if there's one thing we want to do as writers...

Watch: Or pure sex, that's also possible, we've seen that in the past.

Kieron: We certainly don't want a childish, quest-based relationship progress, if that makes sense. One thing [I don't like], playing games, is if I'm playing a game and have an option to romance a certain character and it's just a matter of talking to them now and probably doing something for them, and then, a few more missions later, I talk to them again and do something else for them. It's this kind of robotic progression as writers we want to make sure that the characters feel so fleshed out when they're interacting, if something was potentially to blossom in their characters, plot-wise, we want the player to be able to explore that in a role playing context. But we don't want to give them a sort of childish kind of "tick a box" "oh, I have a romantic option!" or "Now she's my wife," or "Now he's my husband." That's not the goal, the goal is to actually allow you to express the character. If I feel like I'm really playing this character, this human rogue, and I'm getting really into him, and it makes sense that the flirtations between [him and] somebody else starts to go somewhere then it should make sense that it should start to go somewhere.

Sarah: That's something I felt while working on Original Sin, the first one, the companions that we were writing, they felt really real to me, and I saw moments where, the way they were interacting with the other characters, it would have made sense if there was a bit of a seed between them, or if the player would have felt a little bit of something. I see it as a natural story progression.

Bubbles: I didn't get the original information about romances [I really hadn't -- clear PR failure there]. What exactly have you planned: romances within your party, romances with NPCs, pregnancies, real marriages...?

Sarah: Everything is kind of on the table at the moment...

Watch: Children?

Kieron: It's too early to commit to doing or not doing one particular thing. It's just something we wanted to add in, not necessarily something that we have a direct plan for how that looks in the game.

Sarah: Oh, well, kind of... well, it's true there's nothing set in stone like quest design wise, but Jan [Van Dosselaer, senior writer] is working on a system, we're still trying to flesh out how many starting backgrounds you can have, and whether, from the beginning, you can play as a married couple [married characters] or as two people who have history together, to see if their relationship can grow together or decline, depending on the choices that you make. That's something we're talking about now, a system to implement that from the beginning, so that it's very organic from their backstory, that you have a sense of interacting with your partner especially since it's in co-op.

Kieron: A few have got a passion for that, to actually see two characters already having a history, and that you see the continuation of that history as opposed to just something new. These two characters can still do something separate if they wish; it's not like they're automatically joined.

Watch: And you will do same sex as well?

silence

Sarah: It's.... one the table, definitely. It will depend on how thoroughly we can do, uhm, every character having the potential to romance any other character, I don't know if it's gonna be that way, or if only these characters can have romances with these characters, and it's planned from the beginning, but right now, the player characters, the list of options we're considering, it's, like, extremely diverse.

Kieron: Extremely diverse. And again, it won't be to tick a box, it will be because it feels good and it feels right for the characters.

Bubbles: You already said that romances would be an integral part of role playing. This is a tricky proposition you may act in a way that would make a romance likely, but you may not want a romance. Do you envision presenting the player with clear options saying: 泥oing this will start a romance? do you plan on putting up regular reminders that you might be able to pursue something?

Sarah: The way that I've seen it working so far is that you have an event or something that will trigger a dialogue, and you should be aware that this is a romance dialogue. Something will happen, you have a choice of four responses, one is very flirtatious, one is guarded or neutral, one is completely neutral, and one is dismissive or something like that. So you should be fairly aware of the relationship you're creating when you choose these. I'm not sure this is exactly how it's gonna go into the game, but when we've talked about how it's gonna work, this is kind of how we envision it. A bit like the affinity affection [sic] dialogues in D:OS they were a bit gamey, not the best element of the game, but we're envisioning something like this where you have four options.

Bubbles: In the first game, you had deeply intertwined systems between a character's personality and gameplay elements like combat. You could act a certain way and become immune to Charm. You could also choose between taking talents that were very relevant in combat, or you could take something like Pet Pal. Are you going to keep going with that mechanic, and have something like rivalries between characters or romances affecting concrete gameplay statistics?

Sarah: That would be fantastic! That would be amazing! Like, if we can keep that kind of basis that we built, and then build on that, so that the character development is even more tied to your progression? That would be very, very cool.


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Originally Posted by Baardvark




Sorry to necro-post.

I have always found it interesting to watch the two sides of romance/anit-romance clash against one another. As one who used to be on the romance side (now as a game designer I have more appreciation for the design process and understand reasons why it wouldn't be included) to someone now on the fence I have made a number of interesting observations. Ill reserve those if anyone is interested and will talk about relationships in general.

Romance as it stands has been seriously painted in a bad light due to either poor writing in general or it is forced onto the player. Its peculiar when people argue these points and end up playing a lot of JRPG's where they are typically shoved down the players throat. That said I think that Larian has a chance here, a very unique one at that.

In D:OS they used a system to help create personalities for the two player characters based off of dialogue. These personalities granted actual mechanical bonuses to the characters as a whole, which is really cool and fresh. Now lets take a look at Fire Emblem Awakening, they have a support system for the units. Of course they show progression with the support system by upgrading the characters relationships from stranger > friends > best friends > lovers. Letter wise I think it is C > B > A > S. At any rate not everyone is S-support compatible with everyone which makes sense, but lets look at the mechanical benefits to this. In Genealogy of the Holy War, two characters marry and can no longer be paired with other units. Characters that have been paired get a +10 bonus to hit and avoid while within three spaces of each.

Larian is perfectly capable of producing something similar to this affect. I know I stated talking about relationships in general and have focused on romance so we can shift to rivalries. Rivalries can produce a pretty interesting dynamic, generally speaking rivals want to one up one another so what if on a mechanical level this increases their accuracy when within a certain radius. Romance might increase the defense of two characters and depending on the battle it could be more beneficial to pair with your lover or your rival. These are two bad examples but the overall point is still there.

Let' revisit writing now though, a lot of people are turned off of romance because of bad writing. I say revisit Dragon Commander, or watch a play through of that game. Initially I found it extremely strange that a Strategy game had romance in it at all. I was a little concerned about it and didn't think it would really be integral to the experience. So I married a skeleton, figured why not its new and exciting. Little did I know I was about to experience one of the coolest romance plots ever, it really is a testament to the writing capabilities that Larian has. Now Dragon Commander also had some really great moments with the generals as well, they felt pretty fleshed out and they didn't always get a long. In fact I could see a rivalry between Edmund and Henry. I really am not too worried about the writing that Larian can produce, more often than not it is good and polished as well as makes sense.

That leaves forcing romances and actual presentation of the romance. I think something that could be done to alleviate this is present the character with a certain scene early enough. Then proc some internal dialogue with the player. Lets say we have Gwynne and she just killed a bandit. The player looks at her a moment and has a moment of thought and can choose from the the following;

1. Wow, she would be a great rival.
2. Wow, I feel utterly indifferent.
3. Wow, I think I could love her.
4. Wow, get out of my party.

They are super blunt and would really break immersion if presented in that fashion, but that that idea and say you picked option 1. Now you will have more rival dialogue options through the game and you have begun the road to a great rivalry. Maybe you picked option 4, now you are going to have more hostile dialogue and the two of you start hating each other more and more. Something along those lines to kind of nudge the game in a certain direction with dialogue by help of user input early on would be a good deterrent. That said maybe you chose option 1 but end up feeling more of 3, the player should be able to still get there through dialog but the transition might be a little more challenging. Admittedly I do not have a great example for that but given time I could probably think one up.

Anyways I digress and thank anyone who actually read all of that.

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Sorry, dialogues should not give combat bonusses.
Relationship between chars should not do it either.

This is against my rule that I have said several times:

Dialogues should not be a mini game. Not for perks (D:OS1), not to get "You have gained influence on companion x." (KotoR2, NWN2) and not for karma/alignment.
Every dialogue choice that gives combat bonusses or that change a numerical value will push the player to min/max the char, making role playing much harder.

Relationships should be interesting by itself, not a tool to achieve something else.
Please do not make it like DA:O (the only dragon age game I have played) and push the player towards having sex with every party member.


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Originally Posted by Madscientist
Sorry, dialogues should not give combat bonusses.
Relationship between chars should not do it either.

This is against my rule that I have said several times:

Dialogues should not be a mini game. Not for perks (D:OS1), not to get "You have gained influence on companion x." (KotoR2, NWN2) and not for karma/alignment.
Every dialogue choice that gives combat bonusses or that change a numerical value will push the player to min/max the char, making role playing much harder.

Relationships should be interesting by itself, not a tool to achieve something else.
Please do not make it like DA:O (the only dragon age game I have played) and push the player towards having sex with every party member.


Yeap. Character interactions should be their own reward. Bringing stats into the whole thing destroys anything of the sort.

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Originally Posted by Madscientist

Every dialogue choice that gives combat bonusses or that change a numerical value will push the player to min/max the char, making role playing much harder.


But doesn't it actually helps role-playing character a bit? As in, being on edge / feeling safer when near someone you compete with (a rival) or someone you trust (a friend)?

That's said, as a gamer I never cared much for stats wink One rarely needs a perfect / max score to complete the game. But I know a whole lot that do care a lot about that, so I guess I can understand both sides.

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[quote=Madscientist][/quote]


Hey that's perfectly cool too! You are correct as well! Actually I think both ways are correct but the truth in it is some people who min/max well toss aside the story to stomp through the game as best they can. Happens a lot.

I wouldn't say that it destroys it though, when you look at the Rivalry and Friendship between Legolas and Gimli they were in contest and counting their kills. Arguably they were fighting harder and fiercer than they would have alone. So why not toss a bone out to try and weave some game play mechanics into it?

Ultimately it comes down to the player to role play. I think if a player truly wants to role play their character they will. I often times toss aside min/max, in fact I rarely ever do that, to really immerse myself into a game. Its not important to me personally to have dialog add numbers and combat bonuses, I do enjoy games that add that but they are by no means essential.

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Originally Posted by Thiev
Originally Posted by Madscientist

Every dialogue choice that gives combat bonusses or that change a numerical value will push the player to min/max the char, making role playing much harder.


But doesn't it actually helps role-playing character a bit? As in, being on edge / feeling safer when near someone you compete with (a rival) or someone you trust (a friend)?

That's said, as a gamer I never cared much for stats wink One rarely needs a perfect / max score to complete the game. But I know a whole lot that do care a lot about that, so I guess I can understand both sides.

I guess that's the state of games now a days. A lot of classic games required a lot of things to be perfect, otherwise the game was unbeatable. Like you needed to have specific stats items, done a thing at a specific time that probably wasn't mentioned to you.

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Originally Posted by Haleseen
Originally Posted by Thiev
Originally Posted by Madscientist

Every dialogue choice that gives combat bonusses or that change a numerical value will push the player to min/max the char, making role playing much harder.


But doesn't it actually helps role-playing character a bit? As in, being on edge / feeling safer when near someone you compete with (a rival) or someone you trust (a friend)?

That's said, as a gamer I never cared much for stats wink One rarely needs a perfect / max score to complete the game. But I know a whole lot that do care a lot about that, so I guess I can understand both sides.

I guess that's the state of games now a days. A lot of classic games required a lot of things to be perfect, otherwise the game was unbeatable. Like you needed to have specific stats items, done a thing at a specific time that probably wasn't mentioned to you.


Makes you wonder if they fell to bad design for the sake of complexity huh?

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