Questmarkers and alternatives

This is the place to provide bug reports and suggestions about KotC 2 Augury of Chaos.

Questmarkers and alternatives

Postby Atoch » Tue Sep 13, 2022 9:42 pm

Questmarkers are as convenient as they can be poisonous. They can easily ruin the exploration part of an RPG, diminish good writing and make interesting quests boring.

‘Cause it seduces to →Skip and →Skip ….

But, I think, Questmarkers aren’t per se corrosive, it is the automatic setting of markers on persons and locations without prior interactions with them.

The ability to mark important persons or locations manually or semi-automaticly after an interaction is still valuable and could reduce annoying searchings (e.g. on a big city-map).

An important task of markers (often in conjunction with automatic journal-updates) is to preserve informations of a quest, because, well, we aren’t kids anymore and there will be weeks or months without the option to play the game.

Automatic journal updates are good enough for short and simple quest as in “Augury of Chaos” (or… it is probably the best option for this kind of quests.)
But if there are complex quests, perhaps over several maps or chapters, automatic journal updates attract the same problems as typical MMO-Questmarkers: They tend to disengage the players emotionally and intellectually from their tasks, because they are only superficially involved in them to begin with - while there is sill a lot of mechanical work to do.

For example a complex detective quest with deceiving, conflicting and superfluous informations: if the automatic summary is enough to make the right decision, then obtaining these informations is diminished to running and clicking on NPCs. But if the automatic summary is not enough, then the player, who can’t remember the details, because he was forced to pause the game for a prolonged time, has a problem…
Fortunately there is a solution: Allow the player to copy every text to his journal, be it conversations, books or notices, and give him the option to assign these texts to the specific quests (or to “general lore”). So all informations are preserved, while it is still the player who has to sort and evaluate the obtained informations.

Of course, this is only important if there is the intention, that the new modules have complex quests. AoC is good as it is and there is no need to change it.
Atoch
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Questmarkers and alternatives

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Re: Questmarkers and alternatives

Postby BlueSalamander » Sat Oct 01, 2022 2:37 pm

The ability to mark important persons or locations manually or semi-automaticly after an interaction is still valuable and could reduce annoying searchings (e.g. on a big city-map).
I agree. Probably, the best would be to have a map screen where the player can add his own text at specific points directly on the map, and that text and position is saved with the rest of the saved game.

So you'd place dots on the map, and mousing over one of the dots would display a tooltip with the text that you've entered about this location. Clicking on a dot would allow you to edit the text.

Here's a map from Ultima Underworld:

Image

It allowed you to place comments directly on the map, like 'Stairs up', 'Stairs down', 'Merchant', 'Shrine', etc. I think that's great.

It's on my list.

(For complex quest lines) Allow the player to copy every text to his journal, be it conversations, books or notices, and give him the option to assign these texts to the specific quests (or to “general lore”). So all informations are preserved, while it is still the player who has to sort and evaluate the obtained informations.
About that, I think that the copy process should be automatic. Because, if it's not, then you might forget to copy some important text into your journal, and maybe the NPC is no longer available to get the information again.

So, in my view, it doesn't really need a change in the interface. It's something that can already be done by the module creator. When any important text is displayed, the script that displays the text can append this information into the Quest Journal within the correct Quest entry.

E.g. Recording from Elminster: 'I recognise the sigil on this half-burnt scrap of parchment. It is the House of Darmanis.'

You might end up with big journal entries. But it's totally doable.

Thank you!! Best regards :)
'Say there is a chunk of meat. Pirates will have a banquet and eat it! But heroes will share it with other people. I want all the meat!!' - Luffy in One Piece
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