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Tweaking the Beamdog NPC's a bit

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Comments

  • subtledoctorsubtledoctor Member Posts: 9,823

    Sounds like a lot of whataboutery.

    Um, you literally asked the question.

    Which other NPC trigger a cut scene?

    And I answered it. So "whatabouteryou" complaining?

    (See what I did there?)

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 16,755

    bob_veng said:

    I agree with this ticket. it should cause neera to die however

    If Beamdog used this suggestion, Neera would leave when CHARNAME responds to her initial dialog with "I would like no part of this. Stay where you are.". You can then assume the Ekandor catches up with her shortly, but since the player has rejected her from the party, there's no need to show that "on-screen".
    That ticket is now submitted to the internal tracker. The feedback in the thread is being listened to.

    *The part about taking the gem bag from Neera and placing it somewhere else is doubtful as Neera has a quest in BG related to gems.

  • tbone1tbone1 Member Posts: 1,939
    I have found Neera annoying because 1) she is and 2) she reminds me of someone I dated in my "idiotic youth", if you'll pardon the redundancy. I just avoid that area in BG1, or tell her "go away, I want no part of this". The BG2 cutscene and the subsequent encounter are pretty annoying, but I just accept it, brace myself for it, refill the coffee mug, and click through ASAP.

    I can't really call her character a value-add, to be honest. She isn't as bad as Cernd, but that is really grading on a curve.

  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,215
    edited February 2018
    i really seem to be in the minority. i like neera but to be fair besides her and and the sod npcs i have not delved to deep into the new ee npc. i do plan to use rassad at some point, it's dorn and hexxat i'm really iffy about personally.

    i also don't have to worry about them starting their cut scenes as i have a mod that makes it so they don't start it unless i talk to them. but i know some people don't like using mods so shrug.

    Screw it. Why even leave it at joinable NPCs, if the intrusiveness is the only thing to complain about? May as well include every BG1 assassin, Teyngan, Zargal, Neville, Slythe, Krystin, Cohrvale, Tarnor, and probably a ton of other hostile encounters I've forgotten the names of into the argument. Should we make them all PID? I mean, you get very little out of half of them so what's the point? No, we shouldn't, because that'd be a terrible design decision considering the roles they fill.

    Does an NPC being joinable suddenly make it a problem? Hell no. So why is this suddenly a problem?


    oh this reminds me of something else. some people like to complain about rassad exp stealing when the assassin attack you in chapter 3. because helping someone who is being attacked is such a crime and it's not like the flaming fist also try to help either.

  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018
    ThacoBell said:

    See this is perfectly understandable. I don't like x because y about them annoys me. My problem is when I see so much criticism justified by "Neera is bad because x." when "x" is shared by a large number of npcs, but its somehow okay that they do "x". That smacks of hypocrisy to me.

    No, that's not "understandable" that's irrelevant. It's just how YOU think as well, and it makes sense to you, but what you're saying here is really "I'm not listening to anything that's not entirely subjective". What the mouse person is doing is derailing the discussion with irrelevant subjectivity, and if you pay attention to what's actually being said you'll notice that:

    And you know Edwin's my favourite NPC, so her not even considering traveling with him is to me, totally unacceptable. Who the hell does she think she is?

    IS EXACTLY WHAT I'M TELLING YOU. She's putting herself before Edwin. The beloved "I'm a plank of wood with the most fireballs". He's the guy who gets mentioned the most in guides because every spellcaster is "worse than Edwin" or "they aren't Edwin". You can't compete with Edwin. Not because of his personality, he barely has any personality, but because he's mercilessly, objectively, stupidly mechanicaly stronger. Edwin has an extra spell per level in a system where mages stop being mages when they run out of spells. Neera randomly screws everything up. You just can't push this character into a players party and expect the player to choose her over Edwin on objective grounds.

    Her personality has 0 to do with what I'm saying, as I have no clue what her personality is. I took her out of the party, I didn't hear her voice acting, as I had the sound turned off. I can't stand most fantasy game music, and I personally think all of (or most of) the original voice acting in the game is horrible. (EDIT: And I didn't even turn it off on my own - my wife was annoyed by the ridiculous voice lines being shouted around the house, so I just turned it off. Noone should be subjected to BG 1 voice acting.) And I'm saying all the things I'm saying. Her personality, writing and sound don't matter one bit, and if someone's complaining about them - THAT'S IRELLEVANT. It's a taste thing. Who cares?

    But her placement, her introduction, coupled with her mechanics - that's what's causing people to hate her. When you average BG fan says "She's only worth killing for her gem bag" followed by "Edwin is my favorite character", what they're saying is "She's no good mechanicaly, I can't imagine having room for her in my party". And that's the same thing they think about every other mage in the game, except the other ones don't force themselves on you, and she does. The whole "Please accept me or they'll kill me" scenario makes a person feel bad for not wanting to help her, but folks just don't need her in the party. It creates this scenario where you're a bad person if you tell her to go away, and you'd tell any mage who isn't Edwin, pretty much, to go away. That only brings out whatever else would irritate someone about her, and brings out the worst in people. Some would dislike her anyway, but this wouldn't be an issue:

    Who the hell does she think she is?

    That's the real problem. And the solution is to make her properly optional, which is, thankfuly, easy.

    Post edited by lujo on
  • ArdanisArdanis Member, Developer Posts: 1,303
    tbone1 said:

    The BG2 cutscene and the subsequent encounter are pretty annoying, but I just accept it, brace myself for it, refill the coffee mug, and click through ASAP.

    I'll poke around about making more cutscenes skippable.

    ThacoBellRaduziel
  • TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,054
    Ok, I am lost. I don't even know what the argument is anymore or who is arguing for what.

    subtledoctorThacoBellContemplative_Hamster
  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018
    The argument, or rather the report, is that people are primarily unhappy about the placement and percieved "pushiness" of some of the new NPC's. This can be analyzed down to the how and the why, especially in case of Neera and Rasaad. The actual writing, sound and whatever is subjective, but their introduction/placement and class leads people to notice and complain about everything about them ever. This leads to confusing and cacophonic feedback, but I went and sorted that bit out. In case of Neera things can be easily remedied by making her introduction less obtrusive to what playing actual BG 1 would be. This would help a lot.

    Also, the new characters, when in party, initiate dialogue too often. This also draws too much attention to them, and this leads to irritation. Also fixable.

    The other people seem to be saying "we don't agree" and "all complaining is pointless" and "who gives you the right to think you understand game design". And the mouse person is venting anger at Neera, but if you pay attention and discard the clearly subjective and unhelpfuly bitter parts of it, is a nice sample case for what I'm reporting here.

  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,215
    edited February 2018
    on the edwin point. she does not want to be with him because he is a red wizard and you know they are after her. man it's like baldurs gate is a game where some npcs arnt compatible with others or something.

    RaduzielContemplative_Hamstertbone1
  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236

    on the edwin point. she does not want to be with him because he is a red wizard and you know they are after her. man it's like baldurs gate is a game where some npcs arnt comparable with others or something.

    This doesn't matter to a player. Do you not understand this?

    The player is faced with the following choice:

    a) Neera. A mage he's likely to meet at lvl1 when they're the most useless, who randomly wastes limited spells in potentialy counterproductive ways.
    b) Edwin. A mage he's likely to meet at more helpful levels for a mage, who casts additional spells per day in a system where spells per day are limited. Also very likely to start with Frieball in a game which can largely be solved by chucking Fireballs at things from a distance.

    It's no contest!

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 16,755
    lujo said:

    The argument, or rather the report, is that people are primarily unhappy about the placement and percieved "pushiness" of some of the new NPC's.

    As you can see from my comments above and the post by @Ardanis , your report has been read and heard.

    Other people in this thread have helped not less than you - as they too shared arguments and opinions. The community is not one person.

    lujo
  • AstroBryGuyAstroBryGuy Member Posts: 3,375
    edited February 2018
    @lujo - Please stop claiming you speak for everyone. You DON'T speak for me. Your opinions are just that, your opinions, not universal truths.

    I don't find Neera "pushy". I would be disappointed if her initial encounter were made a PID because I find her initial encounter appropriate for her character and her situation (she's running up to CHARNAME because she's desperate to find someone who can help her). I do think the player should be given agency over the situation, so a way to cut the encounter short and avoid the cutscene and subsequent combat is appropriate. That's why I suggested making the already existing response of "I don't want any part of this" to avoid the cutscene and have Neera leave.

    For those who don't want Neera and don't want to go through the cutscene, her interaction becomes a short dialogue that will take less than 30 seconds:

    "Help me!"

    "Nope."

    "How rude!" (goes away)

    megamike15profanitywarningThacoBelltbone1
  • profanitywarningprofanitywarning Member Posts: 292
    I find it hard to believe that most players of BG base their party composition choices on who is bestest at throwing mostest fireballs. The type of decisionmaking @lujo is describing seems to be about powergaming. Nothing wrong with powergaming of course, but BG is an RPG. A role-playing game. This might suggest that players can, and to some extend are expected to, make decisions that could possibly turn out to be sub-optimal for powergaming purposes and still be considered sane. It might also imply that there really is no such thing as an objectively better choice for who to pick, and no reason at all to steer players towards or away from any recruitable npc. NPC's are presented in a way that illustrates and indicates what type of person they're supposed to be, so players can choose to pick them up or leave them there or just kill them or whatever based on that. Subjectivity is what roleplaying is all about.

    ThacoBell
  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,215

    @lujo - Please stop claiming you speak for everyone. You DON'T speak for me. Your opinions are just that, your opinions, not universal truths.

    I don't find Neera "pushy". I would be disappointed if her initial encounter were made a PID because I find her initial encounter appropriate for her character and her situation (she's running up to CHARNAME because she's desperate to find someone who can help her). I do think the player should be given agency over the situation, so a way to cut the encounter short and avoid the cutscene and subsequent combat is appropriate. That's why I suggested making the already existing response of "I don't want any part of this" to avoid the cutscene and have Neera leave.

    For those who don't want Neera and don't want to go through the cutscene, her interaction becomes a short dialogue that will take less than 30 seconds:

    "Help me!"

    "Nope."

    "How rude!" (goes away)

    yeah. like i said the easy answer for this is mods but that does not seem to be what the op wants.

    the ee npc in general don't even bother me that much but that may be because i play with npc project so the npcs in bg1 already have dialogue so it does not seem that out of place to me.

  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018

    @lujo - Please stop claiming you speak for everyone. You DON'T speak for me. Your opinions are just that, your opinions, not universal truths.

    I am not expressing my opinions. You are expressing your opinion of whether something is appropriate or not. But that's your opinion. What I'm saying is:

    - A forced encounter with a spellcaster at early levels means that the spellcaster will or won't be accepted into the party as a lvl1 character. This is when spellcasters are objectively the weakest, and Neera's introduction puts the player in the position to accept or reject a spellcaster when it's not the best for them regardless of the spellcasters personality. This is not my opinion, this is plain fact.
    - This almost universally leads to Neera comparing badly to Edwin, because you can meet Edwin when he's not lvl 1. Again, this isn't my opinion, this is plain fact. There are even guides out there that list "starts with fireball if taken at appropriate level" as a big bonus for him.

    This alone should be enough to instantly make that encounter a PID. What you're expressing is your opinion, but what I'm saying here works for everyone whether they acknowlegde it, like it, dislike it or whatever. You don't care for it, but that makes you a minority. Forcing the player into choosing whether to accept a spellcaster at lvl 1 instead of letting the player decide when to talk to her is annoying a whole lot of people, and your solution does nothing to help it.

    It's jut not a matter of anyone's opinion, if the question is "why are people grumbling", this is why they are grumbling, or part of it, and it's really universal thruth.

  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018

    I find it hard to believe that most players of BG base their party composition choices on who is bestest at throwing mostest fireballs.

    Why do you find it hard to believe this? BG was widely beloved by people who barely knew enough english to follow the plot (or even knew there WAS a plot), and Edwin, BG 1 Edwin, is the second most beloved, if not the most beloved character in the series. It's because he's terribly designed to be an unbeatably best mage. How is this so alien to you?

  • AstroBryGuyAstroBryGuy Member Posts: 3,375

    bob_veng said:

    I agree with this ticket. it should cause neera to die however

    If Beamdog used this suggestion, Neera would leave when CHARNAME responds to her initial dialog with "I would like no part of this. Stay where you are.". You can then assume the Ekandor catches up with her shortly, but since the player has rejected her from the party, there's no need to show that "on-screen".
    That ticket is now submitted to the internal tracker. The feedback in the thread is being listened to.

    *The part about taking the gem bag from Neera and placing it somewhere else is doubtful as Neera has a quest in BG related to gems.
    I didn't think about that... Good point.

    Looking at the AR3300 script (in v2.5.10), Neera is given the MINHP1 belt by the script block that creates Ekandor & comany. So, she doesn't have the belt before her initial dialog. Perfect! Those who just want Neera's gem bag can either kill her before she initiates her dialog with CHARNAME (not hard, she's only got 4 hp) or go through the cutscene.

    UnderstandMouseMagicRaduziel
  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,215
    so those people that want to play a good party must be forced to use edwin then, when neera is there as an alternative?

  • TressetTresset Member, Moderator Posts: 7,054
    Just give up guys.

    "Better to fight this battle when 'tis winnable!" -Jaheira

    AstroBryGuy
  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236

    so those people that want to play a good party must be forced to use edwin then, when neera is there as an alternative?

    People use Viconia in both good and evil parties because she is THE BEST. I'm not kidding. Edwin is just so awfuly designed that yes, people use him in non-evil parties. There's guides on when to get him so he won't leave if you didn't do his quest.

  • profanitywarningprofanitywarning Member Posts: 292
    That question was answered in the same post you took that quote from.

  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,215
    you know what if you hate neera so much why not just get the mod that disables her and all ee npcs?

    https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/43074/mod-disable-enhanced-edition-npcs-for-bg-ee-bg2-ee

    or better yet you could get eenpctweaks that makes it so she only starts her cutscene if you talk to her as well as move other npcs around to make them easier to get.

    https://forums.beamdog.com/discussion/58941/mod-bgeenpc-tweaks-for-bgee-sod-bg2ee-eet

    there problem solved.

  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018

    That question was answered in the same post you took that quote from.

    No it wasn't. The question is "Why is this so alien to you?". Where did you guys get the idea that BG was not a breezy hack and slash game for jocks? Because that's who was playing it. People who came up with ways to kill Drizzt for his weapons. People who didn't understand english. People who's favourite character ever is Edwin - who's barely a character. The "strenght of his character" is "this guy can be recruited with fireball and can cast more spells". If you don't think these people are the majority, well, am I crazy to suggest that you're wrong?

    You can't push a lvl 1 randomly-fails-spells spellcaster onto people in that kind of game. You can have it there, sure, write her up, no probs, just don't make he automatically try to insert herself into the party. A large swath of the fanbase will take it the wrong way and has. This is, btw, why folks don't like Xzar - I like Xzar, he's fun, but picking him up at lvl 1 is painful.

  • megamike15megamike15 Member Posts: 1,215
    and there is the side of the fan base that cares less about the combat and more about roleplaying and story and characters. but i guess they don't matter.

    ThacoBellbooinyoureyes
  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018

    and there is the side of the fan base that cares less about the combat and more about roleplaying and story and characters. but i guess they don't matter.

    They "don't matter" because what they have now is really pissing the other, quite a bit more numerous, part off, and the other part would be satisfied with something the subjective story types don't have any real reason to moan about. The regular folks want Neera to behave like all the other mages, they want to not have to pay attention while walking around Beregost, and all this can be had by just letting her be a PID. That's very, very little to ask and all you come across as insanely selfish and self centered when you rail against this. You don't seem to understand what level of discomfort the current situation is putting the other guys through. If she was PID she'd be a fun self-imposed challenge, like Xzar is for me, but the way she is is causing a ton of backlash.

  • AionZAionZ Member Posts: 2,663
    *HEADBANGS REPEATEDLY AGAINST WALLS*

    I’m just going to call confirmation bias and leave it at that. Where is this evidence of “power gamers who don’t care about role playing are dominant in the BG community”? I’m just going to make a wild guess and say you won’t find it here.

    ThacoBellbooinyoureyes
  • lujolujo Member Posts: 236
    edited February 2018

    *HEADBANGS REPEATEDLY AGAINST WALLS*

    I’m just going to call confirmation bias and leave it at that. Where is this evidence of “power gamers who don’t care about role playing are dominant in the BG community”? I’m just going to make a wild guess and say you won’t find it here.

    Dude, Edwin and Viconia are stuffed in any party they can be stuffed in. Edwin. Just think about this for a second, Edwin is a popular character. He got ported into BG2. People who've never touched BG or any of the infinity games have heard about Edwin, and how great he is and how BG is a game where there's this great sorcerer called Edwin. The BG fanbase considers Edwin a character. Have you ever MET BG fans?

  • UnderstandMouseMagicUnderstandMouseMagic Member Posts: 2,138

    so those people that want to play a good party must be forced to use edwin then, when neera is there as an alternative?

    It's for their own good. ;)
    They will thank you in the long run.

    tbone1
  • ArctodusArctodus Member Posts: 996
    edited February 2018
    lujo said:

    That question was answered in the same post you took that quote from.

    No it wasn't. The question is "Why is this so alien to you?". Where did you guys get the idea that BG was not a breezy hack and slash game for jocks? Because that's who was playing it. People who came up with ways to kill Drizzt for his weapons. People who didn't understand english. People who's favourite character ever is Edwin - who's barely a character. The "strenght of his character" is "this guy can be recruited with fireball and can cast more spells". If you don't think these people are the majority, well, am I crazy to suggest that you're wrong?

    You can't push a lvl 1 randomly fails spellcaster onto people in that kind of game.
    ... yes you can, because you always can tell her that you don't want her in your team. Or just completely avoid her and pick Edwin if you like him that much. The new npcs are only there to give more options to the players. This is also why there's a ton of npc mods of all class.

    And I think you underestimate a few things :

    1. The number of people that are role-playing their playthrough. Not all paladins grab Edwin, thay is just not true. They'll prefer the Minsc/Dynaheir combo any day of the week. And a lot of commentators here (so a significant part of the player fan-base) say that the can't play evil. So, Edwin is not their preferred choice.
    2. The number of people who actually hates Edwin. As a self-centered pretentious mage, he gets his fair share of people who can't stand him.
    3. Even for powergamers, Wild mages has some attraction. Being able to cast a high level spell while using a level 1 slot can be brokenly powerful. If you're into exploits, Wild mages can have lots of value.

    Believe me, there are a lot of people that plays this game a lot of different ways. To suggest that everyone always use Edwin and Viconia is at best highly, highly speculative.

    ThacoBellprofanitywarning
This discussion has been closed.