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Beamdawg You Failed on the 10 Cat Quest

This Quest takes like over 30 an hour to do and the food thing malfunctions so I have to get more. I did not count time but it seemed like almost an hour for me to find all the cats- they seem to spawn randomly. After the first 7 or so it you have to tour forever to find them. Then one died in a fireball trap I crossed. The quest is not fun and bad in every way a quest could be designed. I think the area with the wild magic is cool with the random events but your cat quest designer should be made to drink Korean boiled Cat soju. oh no don't buy that- it is made from boiled alive cats. Put that on your patch list..... But I recommend everyone not to do it until they do patch it.

aqzinaFinnTheHumanatakdog
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Comments

  • jackjackjackjack Member Posts: 3,247
    I couldn't carry more than two at a time or they'd scarper. Gets a bit tedious, to be sure.

    CrevsDaak
  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,343
    I largely agree. If you are doing the Neera quest line, you really need to do the personal quest of each of the wild mages, that are otherwise relatively simple tasks, and I imagine that was the idea behind this as well. I actually quite like the mechanic of luring the cat with the food. The main problems are that:
    i) it is super-repetive. Annoying fetch X quests may the a trope of MMOs, but I don't play those for a reason.
    ii) even if the number of repetitions were lower, such as 3, there is absolutely no hint, guidance, or logic on where you should go to look for the next cat. You are literally left without a clue, wandering aimlessly around a map that is (in my case) devoid of encounters as you explored it fully on the way in. This is something to do instead of having fun with the rest of the game.
    iii) the cat escaping mechanic is doubling down on the bad - even if you are doing everything right, you may have to do it all again anyway, but it won't be at all different or exciting, just prolonged for no clear reason.
    iv) it falls really unlucky on typical pacing, as the common scenario for me is fully explore the wild magic zone, seeking the refuge, gain access to the refuge, and spend a fair amount of time strolling around talking to everyone. Of all the tasks you pick up, this is the obvious one to pick first, as it is the only one close by. So we get a lot a 'dead' time catching up on the back-story of many characters, followed by an uneventful quest running around looking for sprites to chase. It quickly adds up to several hours of dead time, where nothing eventful happens, you don't acquire any notable xp, nor any really useful new items as the reward for this quest is more flavorful than useful.

    I agree it could use either simplifying, or spicing up to make it more interesting - I dread to think of how a real cat would interact with and abuse a wild magic zone, never mind 9 of them! It has been this way for over 2 years though, and I doubt is high on the priority list to revisit at this point.

    atakdogCrevsDaakVbibbi
  • QueegonQueegon Member Posts: 355
    Whenever I get that quest, I console in all the OHNCATs and never look back.

    jackjackrorikon
  • lunarlunar Member Posts: 3,343
    I never ever did this quest. It is tediousness materialised as a quest. So Baraad always dies of broken heart at the end even when rescued.

    jackjackCrevsDaak
  • SkatanSkatan Member Posts: 3,533
    I never do any of the individual quests, just the main quest. That way I can be done with the Neera questline and move into the only interresting part of it, the attack on the enclave, within minutes (with the help of ctrl-j).

    I agree that the cat quest is really poorly implemented. I'm guessing it was made for shits and giggles, and in that way they succeded, but I agree with @greenwarlock above.

    FinnTheHumanCrevsDaakGenderNihilismGirdlelolien
  • DetectiveMittensDetectiveMittens Member Posts: 234
    I'd like to think Tings the cat is worth it.

    FinnTheHumanCrevsDaak
  • justfeelinathomejustfeelinathome Member Posts: 353
    When I do this quest, I just constantly quick save (q) and reload (l), whenever a cat gets away from me, since they don't seem to have a timer, but rather a percentile of escaping your bag. That's quite immersion breaking, but saves me a lot of sweat. The first time I got back to camp with all cats, I think my heart skipped a beat (when they ALL leave your bag). :lol:

    I think this just might be the point where I'll give up on my first no-reload run. :wink:

  • QueegonQueegon Member Posts: 355
    @justtravelinthrough You can always return them in batches of 2-3 but it's still not worth the trouble.

    justfeelinathomeCrevsDaak
  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,343
    @Queegon I'll admit, I had never thought of even trying to deliver a batch larger than 3 - this quest always involves at least 3 round trips to search.

    @bengoshi the problem is not that this quest is different, it is that it is not fun. Worse, it is anti-fun, it actively sucks fun out of the game, while taking too much time and attention.

    How could it be improved?

    It could happen in a new (wild magic) map, so that you gain access to for the quest, so you are guaranteed to be exploring somewhere new while hunting cats. The simple addition of a map makes it relatively simple for the developers to add content to occur while exploring. The worst part of the current experience is that the exploring is typically dead time, with nothing happening.

    Give each cat discovery a trigger for some interest event/content, so we get more than exactly the same game experience repeated ad nauseum.

    Limit the number of cats that can be found on any one trip, forcing you to break up the monotony with other content. If you are RPing, and this is not forced on you, it is very hard to ignore the simplest/closest/most-urgent? task in front of you.

    Simplify the quest so that you are never hunting long for a cat - have a cat appear on a trigger within 10-15 seconds when you are actively searching, anywhere on that map.

    Speed the quest - have the remaining cats follow show up as following you into the camp after you deliver the third. I would argue three gives the flavor of the quest, there is little to be gained with an additional 5 repeats, and the players have the /option/ of trying to herd more back if they genuinely enjoy staying to hunt in the first wild-zone map.

    I'm curious how others might try to remedy this quest (rather than simply pulling it apart). How could we inject the fun or pace back into this part of the game?

    Vbibbi
  • ArunsunArunsun Member Posts: 1,571
    I am not too sure what was in Beamdog's mind when they made this quest.
    Hardly ever have we seen such tedious quests. And you'd believe they worked on the tediousness to make it as annoying as they could:
    It happens in the wild forest. Which means no haste.
    The cats moves which makes it annoying to find them
    RNG makes you drop the cat => shitty micromanagement and bullshit situations with cats dropping just before you change map.

    atakdog
  • scriverscriver Member Posts: 1,720
    He edited a screenshot in an image editor.

    CrevsDaak
  • QueegonQueegon Member Posts: 355
    @scriver I think what Skatan meant is jackjack liking, agreeing and checking insightful at the same time.

    SkatanjackjackCrevsDaakGenderNihilismGirdle
  • SkatanSkatan Member Posts: 3,533
    Queegon said:

    @scriver I think what Skatan meant is jackjack liking, agreeing and checking insightful at the same time.

    ^- This.

    GenderNihilismGirdleGozetalolien
  • shawneshawne Member Posts: 3,239
    joluv said:

    My understanding of that quest is that it's intentionally frustrating and pointless. "Herding cats" is an (American?) idiom for a difficult and futile task. I take it as kind of a joke or lesson about completionism in RPGs. In real life, we know that some tasks are just a waste of time. But in RPGs, for whatever reason, we feel the need to say "yes" to every yokel who asks us a favor. If you don't like the quest, then it's just like Miner Dink says:

    "Well, that's fine. Being an adventurer and all, you probably don't have the time to waste."

    That's something of a false equivalence, though: the criticism of the "Collect 20 Bear Asses" quest isn't just that it's tedious, it's that doing it (or not doing it) changes nothing in the story. Here, choosing not to do the quest leads to a character's death.

  • FinnTheHumanFinnTheHuman Member Posts: 404
    shawne said:

    joluv said:

    My understanding of that quest is that it's intentionally frustrating and pointless. "Herding cats" is an (American?) idiom for a difficult and futile task. I take it as kind of a joke or lesson about completionism in RPGs. In real life, we know that some tasks are just a waste of time. But in RPGs, for whatever reason, we feel the need to say "yes" to every yokel who asks us a favor. If you don't like the quest, then it's just like Miner Dink says:

    "Well, that's fine. Being an adventurer and all, you probably don't have the time to waste."

    That's something of a false equivalence, though: the criticism of the "Collect 20 Bear Asses" quest isn't just that it's tedious, it's that doing it (or not doing it) changes nothing in the story. Here, choosing not to do the quest leads to a character's death.
    I'm not seeing the difference. :wink:

  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 1,944
    edited April 2016
    @shawne: Sorry, what's the false equivalence? I don't follow.

    Edit: Do you mean between Kylee's Dagger and Herding Cats? I wasn't trying to suggest any similarity, just using the quote.

  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,343
    @Joluv are you saying the lesson is that we don't like a certain kind of player, so we deliberately put a quest in to "teach" them to either learn to play games in a different way, or deliberately make this game less fun for them? As Shawne points out, not completing the quest has consequences, and it ties not only into competing this one quest, but the whole Neera quest line that is spoiled for a completionist player; it is not just a matter of dropping just-the-one optional quest.

    It feels to me more like a new (to BG) developer's first attempt at a quest, before they have understood the flavor of the game. It is a standard trope for a modern adventure game, offering minimal xp and reward (so not affecting the power-curve of the game) while having some interesting interactions with the game engine - it is far more interesting to write than to play. By the end of implementing this quest, you should have picked up most of the skills necessary for adding new content to the game.

    atakdogVbibbi
  • scriverscriver Member Posts: 1,720
    Skatan said:

    Queegon said:

    @scriver I think what Skatan meant is jackjack liking, agreeing and checking insightful at the same time.

    ^- This.
    I had assumed that the poster had edited the post to look like that as a way of saying he wanted to give him all three qualities, I didn't notice he actually managed to do it on the post until just now.

    After which I too am furious what kind of arcane mysteries was used to accomplish it.

  • mf2112mf2112 Member, Moderator Posts: 1,919
    Queegon said:

    @scriver I think what Skatan meant is jackjack liking, agreeing and checking insightful at the same time.

    I think I saw @Tresset do that too once, not sure how though.

    Gozeta
  • joluvjoluv Member Posts: 1,944
    @GreenWarlock: I confess that I don't actually remember what effect that quest has on Neera's storyline. I'm not a big Neera fan, so I've only done the Hidden Refuge once. But really? It's mandatory for her quest?

    "Comment" would have been a better word than "lesson." I know how sensitive people are to the idea of being lectured to by Beamdog, so I should be more careful with my language. Either way, I find it completely implausible that a developer would unironically make a literal herding cats quest.

    FinnTheHumanmf2112Kaigen
  • GreenWarlockGreenWarlock Member Posts: 1,343
    @joluv the quest is optional, but there are consequences

    each wild-mage whose sub-quest you do not complete before confronting Neera's pursuers will be dead, when you finally try to free them.


    Yes, I had forgotten about the herding cats meme in my frustration with this quest, although it did jump out the first time I played. It does not make the gameplay any more redeeming, and adding frustration simply to validate injecting yet another pop-culture reference into the game is also questionable ;)

    On the bright side, it is generally quicker to complete than scoring a point playing Desert Bus. Please note that is not a gauntlet being thrown down to future BeamDog quest-writers!

    And yes, if this quest were as optional as Noober and Neeber, it would be less problematic (but no less frustrating for the completionists among us).

    joluv
  • KaigenKaigen Member Posts: 1,567
    I always just use the boots of speed. Start from the exit to the refuge, head to an opposite corner, noting the position of cats along the way. Then, starting with the cat closest to the furthest corner, zip back picking up any along the way. That usually gets the quest complete in three trips with a minimum of fuss.

    Of course, it helps that I thoroughly explore the Wild Forest upon arriving there every game, seeing all the events and getting the XP for disabling the traps, which gives me a clear run. Which might be a side goal of the quest: Get the player to see all of the Wild Forest in case they just beelined to the exit and skipped over everything else.

  • shawneshawne Member Posts: 3,239
    As GreenWarlock points out: most fetch quests of this sort have no real consequences whether you complete them or not. In this specific case, it matters because if you choose not to endure a frustrating and seemingly pointless task, Barad Ding will die during the wild mage rescue mission. Granted, he's hardly the most interesting of Talana's group, but it's still a situation where the life or death of an NPC is directly tied to your tolerance for annoyance.

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