[MUD-Dev] Respecting NPCs

Daniel.Harman at barclayscapital.com Daniel.Harman at barclayscapital.com
Fri Nov 2 11:19:35 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001

From: Michael Tresca [mailto:talien at toast.net]

> But I've watched people coo over Furbies for hours.  Why?  Because
> on the conversational scale, it's still higher than the vending
> machine.
> As a new player who doesn't necessarily have the ability to judge
> the conversational NPC, I'm more likely to be impressed by one
> that holds my conversation longer.

Sure a furby is interesting for maybe a few hours. I don't think
people would still be interested after however many days played most
people have put into these games.

> Not particularly effective if you made no other effort to give
> NPCs personalities.  Much more effective if you've already
> invested in Talien, who has a wife and two kids, will tell you
> about them, and is fond of strong ale.

No, because I still don't give a damn about Talien and his whining
kids.  Dramatic content has to grasp you, not just be there. Detail
isn't significant just by being present, it has to related to
something else. A novel isn't better if the author gives lots of
ancilliary details about characters who have no impact in the plot.

I just played DAoC for the first time since release last night, and
met some npc droning on about some ghosts. After reading paragraphs
of uninteresting text, it dawned on me that this wasn't even leading
up to a quest, it was just spam. Even if its creating back story,
this piece meal fashion that EQ and DAoC are trying just doesn't
work for me. It's like being given a novel written on index cards,
but only having 1% of the stack whilst a load of people you don't
know have the rest. Perhaps I'm wrong and there are people who enjoy
running up to every npc and clicking on them?

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