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A D&D story where the Heroes fail.

2

Comments

  • loganultimaloganultima Member Posts: 109
    Dragon Age had one of the best endings imo, i'm a hopeless idealist romantic so naturally saving the world, becoming a hero and getting the girl was a 100% win situation for me.

  • LadyRhianLadyRhian Member Posts: 14,694
    If you want a game that truly penalizes you for your choices, both good and bad, play "The Witcher". The choices you make truly change what happens in the future, and not in a "Well, i'll just reload and make a different choice" kind of way. Often, you don't find out the consequences of your choice until hours later in the game and even "Good" choices can have unforseen consequences.

    AntonKukarachaGrieg
  • shawneshawne Member Posts: 3,239
    @LadyRhian: I just can't take "The Witcher" seriously. He collects "nudie cards" from the women he sleeps with. :)

  • LadyRhianLadyRhian Member Posts: 14,694
    @shawne True. But the story stuff is better than that.

  • JolanthusJolanthus Member Posts: 292
    Fable 3 is also like that. With the added bonus of John Cleese voicing your butler

  • shawneshawne Member Posts: 3,239
    @LadyRhian: So I've heard, but one of the things I really need to get through a game - especially when it's a long RPG like "The Witcher" - is a likeable protagonist. Geralt is kind of... grim. Excessively so, IMO. :)

    noodles_too
  • SixSix Member Posts: 33
    Definitely have to agree on the witcher 1/2 if you want consequences for what you do. True that the sex in the first one is kinda silly but if you avoid it or just see it for the mini game it is of gotta collect them all it is a seriously deep and complex world. So refreshing with a game where you don't decide you are going to be good or evil at the start and then pick the obviously right dialogue choices to either fill that role or get some silly stat bonus for maxing out one alignment.
    Wouldn't call the games out to be the hero failing but often the choices you make will cause some afterthought and regret.
    Beats baldurs gate by miles apart from the lack of customization and replayability, mind you playing it less than two times would still be silly.

  • SabotinSabotin Member Posts: 38
    I don't understand, basically what OP is asking is a fancy "Game Over" sequence? There's plenty of failures in games, but they are not used for endings, but for hurdles in your journey towards it. An ending HAS to have you accomplish something, otherwise it's not and ending.

    P.S. The ending in the Berserk anime is actually the beginning of the story. Kinda like the start of BG2.

  • LadyRhianLadyRhian Member Posts: 14,694
    @shawne I've read two of the books by Andrej Sapkowski. Geralt's attitude reflects the world he inhabits. And yeah, kinda grim.

  • DreamDream Member Posts: 52
    There are two ways to do bittersweet endings.

    One is like PS:T where you go to hell (or cease to exist) no matter what but at least if you do it right you come out feeling satisfied.

    And the other is like ME3.

  • kamuizinkamuizin Member Posts: 3,680
    I wouldn't call ME3 end bittersweet, much less say it's alike PS:T end, ME3 end is a shit, an end that ignore everything you acomplished through the game, don't have a minimum level of coherence with the story and the reapers get what they want no matter what, cos every homeworld of each advanced race is destroyed there and the army of the entire universe is now locked at the sun system cos all the mass relays are destroyed and no one can leave the system... many ppl, few resources...

    That end sucks, even more because the game was awersome, one of the bests ever made, what make the shit end a lot more frustrating.

    PS:T is awersome and impecable in storyline matters, a great game with one of the best ends we could hope for.

  • shawneshawne Member Posts: 3,239
    @kamuizin: They fixed a lot of that in the Extended Cut DLC. Some problems persist, but it's much more satisfying now.

  • KukarachaKukaracha Member Posts: 256
    I like OP's idea. It's a different, less pleasure-driven approach to games.

    I don't think, however, that you need to push this concept that far; death and complete failure are not needed to make you feel the weight of regret and sorrow. It would also be quite simplistic and difficult to achieve in a media where you act as a player. But a few games have already included ambiguous, saddening and desperate endings to their plot.

    I'll mention the end of Fallout (the vault dweller is expelled from his home), FF IX (all the characters die) and I have no mouth and I must scream (an eternity of torture after losing all hope)

  • DreamDream Member Posts: 52
    kamuizin said:

    I wouldn't call ME3 end bittersweet, much less say it's alike PS:T end, ME3 end is a shit, an end that ignore everything you acomplished through the game, don't have a minimum level of coherence with the story and the reapers get what they want no matter what, cos every homeworld of each advanced race is destroyed there and the army of the entire universe is now locked at the sun system cos all the mass relays are destroyed and no one can leave the system... many ppl, few resources...

    That end sucks, even more because the game was awersome, one of the bests ever made, what make the shit end a lot more frustrating.

    PS:T is awersome and impecable in storyline matters, a great game with one of the best ends we could hope for.

    It's basically what I was getting it; you can either do it in a way that's good or you can do it like ME3 did it and have it be awful (99 portion bitter 1 portion sweet).

  • RingoRingo Member Posts: 39
    Eldryth said:

    There's already a Forgotten Realms game that borders on this- Neverwinter Nights 2. You do stop the villain, but your home is destroyed long before that, and your entire party is killed just afterwards. People hated it, to the point where a number of the deaths had to be retconned in the expansions. So no, I don't think this is a good idea.

    Ooh, but there was this alternative evil ending where you could join the villian and kill off all your friends in the very last scene. One of the few bright spots of that awful campaign (imo).

  • BjjorickBjjorick Member Posts: 1,208
    only way i can think of the ending to a game where the main char/party dies would be something like where the main char is sick/a curse is placed upon the party that can't be lifted, even upon defeating the big bad. A game of dispair that they know they'll lose no matter what, but in the sense of true heroics, they still go and fight the big bad and save the world/village/univese/planes/etc. I love those sense of dispair games, where your party goes though the stages of finally accepting what they can't change, and unlike many other games (like bg honestly), no matter how powerful your chars become, in the end, they're still limited by the rules of the universe they exist in.

    I'm sure most would think it a bad concept, but i would love to see a game based on this premise.

  • FavreFavre Member Posts: 33
    I'm glad you mention Berserk. If Guts achieve something, it's surely it's metamorphosis into the biggest badass two handed swordsman of all time.

    But Berserk is a masterpiece. It's one of the rare story where the hero has a chance to die and get permanently physicly and psychologicly mutilated through his journey. That's what make guts a real hero and the story captivating.

  • wariisopwariisop Member Posts: 163
    Favre said:

    I'm glad you mention Berserk. If Guts achieve something, it's surely it's metamorphosis into the biggest badass two handed swordsman of all time.

    But Berserk is a masterpiece. It's one of the rare story where the hero has a chance to die and get permanently physicly and psychologicly mutilated through his journey. That's what make guts a real hero and the story captivating.


    ^You are my new favorite poster, man I love the fact that the American anime didn't have that fairy crap that ruined the manga for me. When Guts lost to Zodd, he lost completely, no magical power-up because a friend is in danger, no transformation that was automatically more powerful. The fairy in the manga took that away for me, much like Rurouni Kenshin did compared to the Samurai X movie. Guts lost alot of comrads in that battle, and the only reason they survived was due to destiny; a destiny that was worse than if he had died at that very moment.

  • DrugarDrugar Member Posts: 1,566
    The Witcher is indeed a great example of this, W1 more than W2. You'll be punished for your altruism and rewarded for your selfishness, except for the times where you think this is the case, then it's the other way around. It totally messes with you. I spent fifteen minutes looking at a dialogue option, considering all the possibilities of the consequences, not just immediate but also down the line. Way down the line.

    In the end, my most succesful run was the one where I just walked away from a bunch of quests. The game went "alright, you're not getting involved" and progressed accordingly. Very nice that they took that into account.

  • DreamDream Member Posts: 52
    Everytime I see this thread's title I think of Samael in Darksiders telling you that sometimes the hero dies in the end.

  • CorvinoCorvino Member Posts: 2,269
    Sometimes being pragmatic should be just that - an option that gives you equivalent XP/cash and a plot adavantage compared to the noble/wicked option.

    If you're being ruthlessly pragmatic it should net you something extra, or why would you do it? A bit of a tangent, but I stand by it.

  • lmaoboatlmaoboat Member Posts: 72
    edited August 2012
    Drugar said:

    The Witcher is indeed a great example of this, W1 more than W2. You'll be punished for your altruism and rewarded for your selfishness, except for the times where you think this is the case, then it's the other way around. It totally messes with you. I spent fifteen minutes looking at a dialogue option, considering all the possibilities of the consequences, not just immediate but also down the line. Way down the line.

    In the end, my most succesful run was the one where I just walked away from a bunch of quests. The game went "alright, you're not getting involved" and progressed accordingly. Very nice that they took that into account.

    I don't really like it games try and surprise you by simply inverting what you would expect. I remember reading in Dragon Age (because never bothered to beat it) that choosing the Dwarf who tried to kill you and killed your father would be a progressive ruler that help bring the Dwarves back from decline, and the friendly one who saved you just furthered it. I mean, there's having consequence for good actions and surprising the player, and then there's just contrived Outer Limits twists.

    Post edited by lmaoboat on
  • DreamDream Member Posts: 52
    lmaoboat said:

    Drugar said:

    The Witcher is indeed a great example of this, W1 more than W2. You'll be punished for your altruism and rewarded for your selfishness, except for the times where you think this is the case, then it's the other way around. It totally messes with you. I spent fifteen minutes looking at a dialogue option, considering all the possibilities of the consequences, not just immediate but also down the line. Way down the line.

    In the end, my most succesful run was the one where I just walked away from a bunch of quests. The game went "alright, you're not getting involved" and progressed accordingly. Very nice that they took that into account.

    I don't really like it games try and surprise you by simply inverting what you would expect. I remover reading in Dragon Age (because never bothered to beat it) that choosing the Dwarf who tried to kill you and killed your father would be a progressive ruler that help bring the Dwarves back from decline, and the friendly one who saved you just furthered it. I mean, there's having consequence for good actions and surprising the player, and then there's just contrived Outer Limits twists.
    Modern Bioware employing contrived twists and forced drama? Say it isn't so!

  • DrugarDrugar Member Posts: 1,566
    edited August 2012
    lmaoboat said:

    I don't really like it games try and surprise you by simply inverting what you would expect. I remover reading in Dragon Age (because never bothered to beat it) that choosing the Dwarf who tried to kill you and killed your father would be a progressive ruler that help bring the Dwarves back from decline, and the friendly one who saved you just furthered it. I mean, there's having consequence for good actions and surprising the player, and then there's just contrived Outer Limits twists.

    Well, most of the consequences DO make sense, if you've paid attention. Example; early in the game you have to watch over some crates owned by a shady dealer. Then some elves appear and introduce themselves as Scoia'tel, elven freedom fighters, though their reputation is more like elven terrorists. They gave me a sob story about how the crates contain medicine and weapons, were originally theirs anyway and they just want to defend themselves (their logo IS on the boxes) so I figured, fark it, you're being oppressed and hunted, you could use it, let's be nice.

    Later on in the game, surprise! The scoia'tel terrorists turn out to be actual terrorists and they murder some human civilians (including your contact for another quest) and are far better armed and in better health now that *somebody* supplied them with goods. That's what you get when you listen to terrorists.

  • KukarachaKukaracha Member Posts: 256
    edited August 2012
    @lmaoboat
    I strongly disagree. As we run towards photorealism, stories like Dragon Age lose their power. The original symbolism becomes a simplistic view of society.
    Fairytales usually operate on various levels, which is the source of their interest. But simple stories of bad against evil in games lack the depth to achieve the same results and to hold the same meaning.

    In short, you either tell a symbolic tale, or you tell a realistic and thus complex story.

    After all, is good always rewarded in real life? Do "good persons" only indulge in "good" activities? The Witcher reflected this pretty well : if you act out of ignorance, even if you feel that you're making the right decision, you can't possibly foresee the consequences.
    Too often in RPGs can you act carelessly, save the world and make everyone happy; but not everybody can have a piece of the cake, and some will necessarily be left out. History tells us that those are not always the "bad guys".

    Post edited by Kukaracha on
    MoomintrollGrieg
  • SixSix Member Posts: 33
    @Drugar Just like in real life the humans of that world generally think that anything different is wrong and would optimally be dead. While the scoia'tel are no angels the only reason they are called terrorists is because they are the weaker one of the two sides. The humans come into lands that elves had used for thousands of years and take them for themselves. If a foreign power comes into your country and suddenly say that you and all your kin no longer have a place there and both your life and possessions are moot under their laws. The only options really are to , flee, die, live under slavery or guerrilla/terrorism warfare.

  • DrugarDrugar Member Posts: 1,566
    @Six
    I'm not saying right or wrong here, just describing the situation. The treatment of the elves and dwarves in that world is ghastly, really quite horrid. On the other hand, scoia'tel reply by attacking human civilians and terrorising the populace when they can.
    Both sides are in the wrong. So ideally, the Witcher should just stay out of the whole war. Witchers kill monsters.

  • lmaoboatlmaoboat Member Posts: 72
    Maybe it's just my imagination, but most fantasy these days seems to be dark and edgy low fantasy, or hig hfantasy acting like low fantasy.
    Kukaracha said:

    @lmaoboat
    I strongly disagree. As we run towards photorealism, stories like Dragon Age lose their power. The original symbolism becomes a simplistic view of society.
    Fairytales usually operate on various levels, which is the source of their interest. But simple stories of bad against evil in games lack the depth to achieve the same results and to hold the same meaning.

    In short, you either tell a symbolic tale, or you tell a realistic and thus complex story.

    After all, is good always rewarded in real life? Do "good persons" only indulge in "good" activities? The Witcher reflected this pretty well : if you act out of ignorance, even if you feel that you're making the right decision, you can't possibly foresee the consequences.
    Too often in RPGs can you act carelessly, save the world and make everyone happy; but not everybody can have a piece of the cake, and some will necessarily be left out. History tells us that those are not always the "bad guys".

    Why do I care what happens in real life? That's what we have real life for.

  • KukarachaKukaracha Member Posts: 256
    @lmaoboat
    If you're being realistic, you might as well inspire yourself from reality.

    The interest of the real world here is that it is immensely rich and complex, far more than any fantastic world will ever be. It is also the world we share, and art and culture are a reflection of our experiences in it.

    However, if you merely see games as an escape, then we have different expectations, I guess.

  • CorvinoCorvino Member Posts: 2,269
    @lmoaboat Not sure I agree on the "everything is low fantasy" angle. Game of Thrones is some of the most visible fantasy around at the moment and it's unashamedly all about kings, lords and knightly heroes with a looming dark threat in the north, and dragons. Dragon age (1 at least) is also a story revolving around getting the help of kings and lords to defeat an external supernatural menace, with dragons. Skyrim too has a civil war plotline that has you helping and dethroning jarls, and takes place in a world full of magic and (you guessed it) dragons.

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