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TL:DR - Conversational choices that don't dramatically alter the outcome of a conversation are a waste of time and 'saving throws' in a conversation need to be more fluid then pass/fail/pointless. There should be degrees of a rolling well or badly.


I have been enjoying the game so far and have run through a good bit of the availible content so far (currently in the under dark). I was REALLY hoping this game would bring about choices that matter. I can see the effort to make this so, but far to often 'saving' throws in conversations have a win or lose outcome. I'm not speaking to the rightful gripes about choosing the character to talk, or balancing good / evil choice paths.

What I man is Omelumn for example. You go through 2 saving throws in this discourse that no matter how many times repeated or result of said choices you arrive at the same end. The only difference is how you talking chars condition afterwards. This is understandable to a point however it's a simple example of a problem that persists in many verbal encounters. All rolls lead to a pass / fail / pointless situation. It would be far more interesting if a critical success or failure yielded some game altering experience outside of the more mundane result of same dialog no matter what with a status effect on the talker after if failed. I realize this would put a lot more complexity into the conversational chains. I personally despise when a game gives you 3 or 4 responses that always lead to the same result with no effect or the same effect.

I know it's not an easy ask, but please stop putting in meaningless response differences or closed conversational forks. If my character is rude as hell to someone , the end result should be wildly different then if I'm personable or simply dull. I don't mean different as say the wrong thing and be forced to kill the character. If I'm nice to a trader or charismatic, I should get better prices. Same sort of result if I just scare the holy hell out of them with my characters raw presence (and a high roll on intimidation).

These are the sort of varied results a PnP group would get with rolls and a DM. You can't full replicate that in a game but you can certainly do better then this and most other 'choice' offering rpgs out there.

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I was about to write up something similar, but here it is, so I'll just add to it. I've got one major issue and one smaller issue.

The major issue is what is being described by OP. My best example of this is interacting with the devil (second time visiting camp). I just tried pretty much all options in that dialogue, ranging from "I agree" to "Draw your weapons". No matter what I said or did I didn't see any changed dialogue from the devil, with one exception. No matter if I accept his offer, am unsure about it, or threaten to kill him, he'll still tell me he'll be back later, and most of the lines are exactly the same. *The one exception is that he hoped for /or/ enjoy when I put up a fight.

So what's the point in the illusion of a choice? If he had an arrogant attitude and spoke to me like I was beneath him I wouldn't mind much, because it would be in character for him to ignore any of my input to the conversation, but instead he's trying to influence me and keep up a pretense. I do get that the outcome will be the same no matter what, because it's important to the plot, but the way that outcome is presented to the player is still very important. An alternative to what's currently in EA would be if there os a range of outcomes like 1) staying in human shape during the conversation, not revealing his true self, 2) exposing himself as a devil, but keeping it pleasant, or 3) exposing himself as a devil, and straight up telling you that you suck and that it's not really a choice anyway. If I could affect the dialogue in that way then it would make sense to me, and he would reveal different pieces of information depending on your approach and your choices.

The minor issue can be exemplified by the conversation with the two brother and Ethel down by the swamp. When Ethel lies to the brothers you can do an investigation check(?) and reveal that she's holding something back. If you succeed with the check, one of your dialogue options will change slightly. Instead of just accusing her, you will accuse her with a bit more certainty. Her response is pretty much the same though, and it certainly doesn't affect the interaction with her later or the outcome of the situation. Neither does it provide you with any useful information or piece of lore that will at least give you as a player a better understanding. The question, just like before, is what the point is of such a check and dialogue change if nothing happens?

Once again, I get that the plot require certain outcomes, but all the choices (plot related or not) should have an effect on the main protagonist, the party or the world, and preferably so in a way that comes back to bite you in the ass or reward you at a later stage, and depending on later choices.

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I hope that there will be more dialogue changes depending on what you select in dialogue in the final version, when they record all the dialogue.

However, I do like how they add different choices for race/class/skills, that even if they lead to the same NPC response do give you some flavour text to read corresponding to your character.

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Originally Posted by Xennial_Dragon


What I man is Omelumn for example. You go through 2 saving throws in this discourse that no matter how many times repeated or result of said choices you arrive at the same end. The only difference is how you talking chars condition afterwards. This is understandable to a point however it's a simple example of a problem that persists in many verbal encounters. All rolls lead to a pass / fail / pointless situation. It would be far more interesting if a critical success or failure yielded some game altering experience outside of the more mundane result of same dialog no matter what with a status effect on the talker after if failed.


Here I see the problem that when people know that they get some major advantage when they roll a 20, then they will just reload the save as many times as necessary. thats a 5% chance if you have no advantage/disadvantage, thats managable if you're save scumming.

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Counterpoint: judging from the comparison between my playthroughs so far and what I've seen other people doing in some videos, I'm starting to get the sense that there's far more impactful choices to be made than I initially imagined.
If anything it's one side of the game that is impressing me significantly.

It helps that being at very least a bit aware of the amount of work necessary to include some of these permutations in scripting, and not being delusional and into wishful thinking, no one will me hear saying something silly like "the story should diverge in entirely different directions on a whim if I want so".


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Originally Posted by frequentic
I was about to write up something similar, but here it is, so I'll just add to it. I've got one major issue and one smaller issue.

The major issue is what is being described by OP. My best example of this is interacting with the devil (second time visiting camp). I just tried pretty much all options in that dialogue, ranging from "I agree" to "Draw your weapons". No matter what I said or did I didn't see any changed dialogue from the devil, with one exception. No matter if I accept his offer, am unsure about it, or threaten to kill him, he'll still tell me he'll be back later, and most of the lines are exactly the same. *The one exception is that he hoped for /or/ enjoy when I put up a fight.

So what's the point in the illusion of a choice? If he had an arrogant attitude and spoke to me like I was beneath him I wouldn't mind much, because it would be in character for him to ignore any of my input to the conversation, but instead he's trying to influence me and keep up a pretense. I do get that the outcome will be the same no matter what, because it's important to the plot, but the way that outcome is presented to the player is still very important. An alternative to what's currently in EA would be if there os a range of outcomes like 1) staying in human shape during the conversation, not revealing his true self, 2) exposing himself as a devil, but keeping it pleasant, or 3) exposing himself as a devil, and straight up telling you that you suck and that it's not really a choice anyway. If I could affect the dialogue in that way then it would make sense to me, and he would reveal different pieces of information depending on your approach and your choices.

The minor issue can be exemplified by the conversation with the two brother and Ethel down by the swamp. When Ethel lies to the brothers you can do an investigation check(?) and reveal that she's holding something back. If you succeed with the check, one of your dialogue options will change slightly. Instead of just accusing her, you will accuse her with a bit more certainty. Her response is pretty much the same though, and it certainly doesn't affect the interaction with her later or the outcome of the situation. Neither does it provide you with any useful information or piece of lore that will at least give you as a player a better understanding. The question, just like before, is what the point is of such a check and dialogue change if nothing happens?

Once again, I get that the plot require certain outcomes, but all the choices (plot related or not) should have an effect on the main protagonist, the party or the world, and preferably so in a way that comes back to bite you in the ass or reward you at a later stage, and depending on later choices.



Agreeing to both the OP post and your. Quest needs to have differents ending, rewards, and dialogue depending on your answers. Else its meaningless.


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+1 i also think being able to see the dc of some skill checks or if you succeeded or failed only exacerbates the problem. i wish there were more hidden roles behind the 'dm screen' that made encounters more dynamic - but tbh i cant think of anything the devs could do at this point that would address any of ops concerns without significant investment

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This is something I have noticed as well.
Hopefully its just due to EA.

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Yeah I've started just spamming spacebar through dialogues personally. smirk

Especially Raphael. When he shows up, and offers to get rid of the tadpole, why does he not do it when you say "sure do it"?

Like.. his reasoning is that he wants to wait until we're at our most desperate.. once we've reached the end of our hope.. but if thats the case why show up at all? The whole Raphael cutscene is just a minor annoyance.

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I get where the OP is coming from, and it is very nice when our choices are meaningful. However, there is sometimes a benefit to making decisions, even if they don't impact the outcome. Based on the current character creation, our characters come in a pretty blank slate. Sure, you have a background, but those are pretty limited in their detail and often fairly mechanical. Being asked questions gives you an opportunity to express (and often identify) aspects of your character that you might not have thought about otherwise. I don't necessarily want a ton of this, but I find that having "what would you do in this situation?" questions sprinkled around can help immersion. Certainly, these choices should *feel* meaningful (and a more nuanced dialog tree would often be helpful for this), but they don't necessarily need to have a big impact on the story to be useful.

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Originally Posted by Xennial_Dragon
TL:DR - Conversational choices that don't dramatically alter the outcome of a conversation are a waste of time and 'saving throws' in a conversation need to be more fluid then pass/fail/pointless. There should be degrees of a rolling well or badly.


I have been enjoying the game so far and have run through a good bit of the availible content so far (currently in the under dark). I was REALLY hoping this game would bring about choices that matter. I can see the effort to make this so, but far to often 'saving' throws in conversations have a win or lose outcome. I'm not speaking to the rightful gripes about choosing the character to talk, or balancing good / evil choice paths.

What I man is Omelumn for example. You go through 2 saving throws in this discourse that no matter how many times repeated or result of said choices you arrive at the same end. The only difference is how you talking chars condition afterwards. This is understandable to a point however it's a simple example of a problem that persists in many verbal encounters. All rolls lead to a pass / fail / pointless situation. It would be far more interesting if a critical success or failure yielded some game altering experience outside of the more mundane result of same dialog no matter what with a status effect on the talker after if failed. I realize this would put a lot more complexity into the conversational chains. I personally despise when a game gives you 3 or 4 responses that always lead to the same result with no effect or the same effect.

I know it's not an easy ask, but please stop putting in meaningless response differences or closed conversational forks. If my character is rude as hell to someone , the end result should be wildly different then if I'm personable or simply dull. I don't mean different as say the wrong thing and be forced to kill the character. If I'm nice to a trader or charismatic, I should get better prices. Same sort of result if I just scare the holy hell out of them with my characters raw presence (and a high roll on intimidation).

These are the sort of varied results a PnP group would get with rolls and a DM. You can't full replicate that in a game but you can certainly do better then this and most other 'choice' offering rpgs out there.


Its fallout 4 conversation all over again
Yes
Sarcastic yes
ask for more money yes
come back later to say yes


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The relevance of many of these choices is not directly in how the other party (say Raphael) responds, but also in how others (especially the companions) react to your choices. Furthermore, while many of these dialogue choices could use more consequence, having degrees of pass/fail is not really in line with how DnD usually works. Not saying I disagree, just that the issue is way more nuanced than how you portray it.

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Sometimes I almost think some people would be crestfallen to go back to the old games and realize that some of these flaws were actually there all along. Bioware's games used the same tricks and if anything back then they didn't even had the costs of voice acting and motion capture as an excuse.
As I said, if anything this BG3 is already surprisingly more reactive than its predecessors in some areas.

Also, keep in mind that a trick these games use is to recycle the same line of dialogue as an answer but to account for different numbers under the hood. Maybe you act like a goody two shoes or like a prick and the answer will always be "Anyway, let's go on with this deal", but one will give you a +X to the merchant attitude and the other will give it a slight malus.

Last edited by Tuco; 16/10/20 09:00 PM.

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Like evryone else I also wander why the game is so littered with so many checks and notions that seem to have no impacts at all, and tbh I truely hope it's on the to do list for a later point in developpement ; otherwise it would be a cruel joke on both us and the pple who work on this game... I mean it took work to put them there, so I have to believe they planned to do something with it.

I'm not a pnp player and I have save scummed to avoid failures at times, but I would really love to see critical success and critical failures ; especially because when you save scum you just want to avoid failures, so all fail roll trigger a reload, hence a roll is just a waste of time.
However with critical success even a save scummer can get excited for a good roll because, and I speak for myself, you waste time to avoid failures but not to trigger critical success (unless the outcome of the roll is something I'm truely invested in like a romance).

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Originally Posted by Tuco
Sometimes I almost think some people would be crestfallen to go back to the old games and realize that some of these flaws were actually there all along. Bioware's games used the same tricks and if anything back then they didn't even had the costs of voice acting and motion capture as an excuse.
As I said, if anything this BG3 is already surprisingly more reactive than its predecessors in some areas.

Also, keep in mind that a trick these games use is to recycle the same line of dialogue as an answer but to account for different numbers under the hood. Maybe you act like a goody two shoes or like a prick and the answer will always be "Anyway, let's go on with this deal", but one will give you a +X to the merchant attitude and the other will give it a slight malus.


I beg to differ, Planescape torment was an incredibly rich game that displayed several ways to close most quests, often through talking . Baldurs gate 2 often had very creative way to solves some quest (let Minsc talk to Desharik to go into the asylum). While it was sometime Binary, at least NPC would react and become hostile when you attacked them and drew you sword in dialogue (regarding Raphael).


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*shakes head sadly* Oh sweet summer children.

The consequences are not immediate, at times they are easily missed, other times they are not. Some open optional quests, others don't. some lead to more deaths, others lead to easier time for the party. yet they are their if you pull the blinders and need for immediate gratification, lose the win/fail mindset.

For instance [spoiler} if you persuade/intimidate whatever the tiefling that is trying to kill Sazza, one some of your party approves of the attempt, some disapprove of it. Then free the goblin. Take the goblin out of the druids grove, and when you get to the goblin camp you waltz on in. Yet if you go to a certain location you find the tiefling dead. How are being able to freely enter the goblin camp, and finding the tieflings body not a consequence of your actions? What is it to small should everything you do even this small encounter have some massive consequence? I'd call being able to freely enter the goblin camp pretty as you please a pretty hefty bonus. What if you fail and like having Wyll in your party? Well chances are of him sticking around is far slimmer if you kill the tiefling and free the goblin. meaning he may very well leave your party, or attack you when you camp. Again another consequence of your actions, and pass/fail. [spoiler]

plz stop and start to open your eyes, explore the world. Pay attention to things more. One pass, or one fail has a large consequence often immediate, and a small consequence sometimes easily missed. yet they are there you just need to open your eyes, and stop being so thin skinned, and needy.

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Originally Posted by clavis
*shakes head sadly* Oh sweet summer children.

The consequences are not immediate, at times they are easily missed, other times they are not. Some open optional quests, others don't. some lead to more deaths, others lead to easier time for the party. yet they are their if you pull the blinders and need for immediate gratification, lose the win/fail mindset.

For instance [spoiler} if you persuade/intimidate whatever the tiefling that is trying to kill Sazza, one some of your party approves of the attempt, some disapprove of it. Then free the goblin. Take the goblin out of the druids grove, and when you get to the goblin camp you waltz on in. Yet if you go to a certain location you find the tiefling dead. How are being able to freely enter the goblin camp, and finding the tieflings body not a consequence of your actions? What is it to small should everything you do even this small encounter have some massive consequence? I'd call being able to freely enter the goblin camp pretty as you please a pretty hefty bonus. What if you fail and like having Wyll in your party? Well chances are of him sticking around is far slimmer if you kill the tiefling and free the goblin. meaning he may very well leave your party, or attack you when you camp. Again another consequence of your actions, and pass/fail. [spoiler]

plz stop and start to open your eyes, explore the world. Pay attention to things more. One pass, or one fail has a large consequence often immediate, and a small consequence sometimes easily missed. yet they are there you just need to open your eyes, and stop being so thin skinned, and needy.


I did this with Sazza. And this was a good example of how the whole game should be. You make a choice, its open a subquest and another path. The dialogue changes, the cut scene change, the NPC react differently . That is not what was described by the OP.

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Originally Posted by Hachina

I beg to differ, Planescape torment was an incredibly rich game that displayed several ways to close most quests, often through talking .

Planescape Torment wasn't a Bioware game, to begin with, nor a previous title in the Baldur's Gate series.
It also was a more lot dialogue oriented than pretty much any other title in the genre until recently (Disco Elysium comes to mind).
Still, it used the same trick to lead different picks to receive the same answer aplenty.

Originally Posted by Hachina
Baldurs gate 2 often had very creative way to solves some quest (let Minsc talk to Desharik to go into the asylum). While it was sometime Binary, at least NPC would react and become hostile when you attacked them and drew you sword in dialogue (regarding Raphael).

Raphael would become hostile as well if that was what the devs wanted and BG2 had plenty of scenarios where it forced your hand toward the desired outcome, anyway.
Look, I love BG2 like few others RPG in existence, but I played it from start to finish more than a half dozen times (Throne of Bhaal included) and I won't let nostalgia fool me on its limitations.



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Originally Posted by Tuco
Originally Posted by Hachina

I beg to differ, Planescape torment was an incredibly rich game that displayed several ways to close most quests, often through talking .

Planescape Torment wasn't a Bioware game, to begin with, nor a previous title in the Baldur's Gate series.
It also was a more lot dialogue oriented than pretty much any other title in the genre until recently (Disco Elysium comes to mind).
Still, it used the same trick to lead different picks to receive the same answer aplenty.

Originally Posted by Hachina
Baldurs gate 2 often had very creative way to solves some quest (let Minsc talk to Desharik to go into the asylum). While it was sometime Binary, at least NPC would react and become hostile when you attacked them and drew you sword in dialogue (regarding Raphael).

Raphael would become hostile as well if that was what the devs wanted and BG2 had plenty of scenarios where it forced your hand toward the desired outcome, anyway.
Look, I love BG2 like few others RPG in existence, but I played it from start to finish more than a half dozen times (Throne of Bhaal included) and I won't let nostalgia fool me on its limitations.




Both baldurs gate1 &2 and planescape were developped by the same studio, Black Isle and here lies their kinship. They also were both made during the same period, on infinity engine.
P:T was one, if not the most well written Crpg ever IMHO. The way you say it, its almost sound like no matter what you did, it didn't matter. But in fact, most of the subquest could be resolved in differents ways, and your dialogue mattered.

About the Raphael part : I get that,but the whole discussion is about realism, roleplaying , and choices. If your choice don't matter, might as well not have dialogue choice. I replayed BG1&2 and torment last couple years, and they never gave me the feeling that my opinion didn't matter. You disagreeing with a quest npc would often provoke fight, sure, but at least it was a different reaction and a different dialogue.

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Originally Posted by Hachina
Originally Posted by clavis
*shakes head sadly* Oh sweet summer children.

The consequences are not immediate, at times they are easily missed, other times they are not. Some open optional quests, others don't. some lead to more deaths, others lead to easier time for the party. yet they are their if you pull the blinders and need for immediate gratification, lose the win/fail mindset.

For instance [spoiler} if you persuade/intimidate whatever the tiefling that is trying to kill Sazza, one some of your party approves of the attempt, some disapprove of it. Then free the goblin. Take the goblin out of the druids grove, and when you get to the goblin camp you waltz on in. Yet if you go to a certain location you find the tiefling dead. How are being able to freely enter the goblin camp, and finding the tieflings body not a consequence of your actions? What is it to small should everything you do even this small encounter have some massive consequence? I'd call being able to freely enter the goblin camp pretty as you please a pretty hefty bonus. What if you fail and like having Wyll in your party? Well chances are of him sticking around is far slimmer if you kill the tiefling and free the goblin. meaning he may very well leave your party, or attack you when you camp. Again another consequence of your actions, and pass/fail. [spoiler]

plz stop and start to open your eyes, explore the world. Pay attention to things more. One pass, or one fail has a large consequence often immediate, and a small consequence sometimes easily missed. yet they are there you just need to open your eyes, and stop being so thin skinned, and needy.


I did this with Sazza. And this was a good example of how the whole game should be. You make a choice, its open a subquest and another path. The dialogue changes, the cut scene change, the NPC react differently . That is not what was described by the OP.


Yet it is, I could of used any of the interactions pass/fail things as a reference point, and shown how things change as you progress. Alot of them are subtle, but they all have impacts down the road, or immedaitly.

Even the fights have impact on what you can and can't do, that differs if you knock someone out. (which to me the mechanic is wonky but I went over it in another thread). Yes if you knock someone out they are still going to be hostile to you, forcing you to do it again, or just kill them. see below for examples as to why stuff makes sense to me. will mark it as spoilers since it may have not been found or has things I've found that others may not have.
[spoiler]
On this let me ask you If someone came up to you and told you they were changing into a mindflayer and you attacked them, they knocked you out. What would you do. They are still a threat to become a mind flayer, they seem to want to become one because they chose to continue their existance, when they really dont appear to have the time to go around like they did normally. Would you refrain from doing what most rational people think is right, putting down such an abomination, that goes against what you believe in with all your heart, is dangerous to your loved ones and family, is dangerous to everyone around. or would you let them continue, and eventually change?

You hate outsiders, an outsider came in and challenged your authority tried to manipulate you in front of your underlings. Mind you your not wholly good, you have an agenda, and they are in the way of it. They are also a threat to your people do to the belief you have that they are attracting monsters. Would you let them go, perhaps bring more goblins to your door, and this time not help you? Or would you do (seeing as how Kagha seems to be more beast then man, and more like a serpent then other beasts) what is necassary to protect yourself, and your family?

You are a High Priestess of a God, someone comes in that has a chance of turning into a mindflayer, which your God/Goddess can't stand, your a zealot, your crazy (both found out through interactions), this thing is a threat not only to your goddess but again to you, and your power. You yourself don't realize their is a worm inside your head, plus he/she is nothing to you. It again tries to manipulate you, or refuses to end itself. It is an abomination (as mindflayers are considered to be to everyone but their own kind for good reason) do you again simply let them walk free?

[spoiler]

What seems to be missing from many arguements is that your character is really no body important over all. That he/she is turning into what every race but one considers to be an abomination, that he/she is trying to manipulate people, or seems to be wanting this to happen by refusing treatment. There fore your character is a threat, a serious one. To everyone around him, everyone that really doesn't owe you anything, doesn't know you, that has other threats around, that has their own agendas, and beliefs. Sure you saved a grove, yet that is outweighed by manipulation, coercion, and you refusing to do what they want, or are showing you oppose them in some way.

No leader, noone wants Joe Smo to come in do whatever he wants, whenever he wants. He has already proven himself capable, and in alot of cases able to challenge you. When you do a check your trying to get them to do what you want, through coercion, manipulation, or whatever. In some instances they found out about your passenger again an abomination that will turn you into an abomination.
and a threat, and more of a threat when you change.

Yes you have choices, yes the npc's have choices. You have a goal, the Npc's have a goal, your companions have goals. This isn't skyrim were everyone wants you on their side, where everyone figures out your the Chosen One Dragonborn! This is a game with npc's that actually have an agenda that at times, and by your choices does, or doesn't align with their own. Which is far more realistic then go meet the Jarl who gives you a quest, and after said quest happily places you in front of those that have served him for years! Oh joy the great writing in that game....such a story line, do this we love you!! do that we love you!! your the Dragonborn I'm going to sing about it, doesn't matter you slaughtered an entire village, it wasn't near us!


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