Shepherds of Haven (WIP) (DEMO UPDATE: 3 Aug 2021)

Ah, it’s completely fine! I thought I missed out on some important codex entry because that is some heavy piece of lore. I really like that theory, actually. :thinking:

Going off our current story, there seems to be lots of potential for tragedy in this game. Is there going to be a way to keep everyone alive, and sane, and reasonably well by the end? Using DA as an example, are you planning to pull any Anders & Chantry stunts, or Nightmare demon at Adamant choices?

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there are story’s like this in choice gaming

@sljzz This game will absolutely not be like DA in terms of inevitable tragedy.

I will never willingly put my readers through not being able to do anything about Anders, haha, or Hawke and Alistair, or Meredith and Orsino. There is the potential for very great tragedy in the game, but all of it is 100% avoidable with the right choices. You will never be forced into a horrible, unavoidable outcome by anything except your own decisions. Some consequences of your actions may surprise you because they have long-ranging effects, but those consequences can still ultimately be changed in replays and different decisions.

So yes, there are ways to keep everyone alive, and sane, and intact by the end. I’m not saying that it will be easy, but it’s definitely possible and achievable! :slight_smile:

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You have no idea how much I appreciate that! I hate all those forced moments in DA and in EVERY SINGLE TELLTALE GAME EVER MADE. ESPECIALLY THAT FORCED DRAMA SCENE IN DAI THAT DIDN’T MAKE ANY SENSE AND ULTIMATELY RESULTED IN THE SAME OUTCOME AND HAD ZERO PAY OFF.

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Right? This in particular is sad to me because there are awfully-few meaningful choices in their choice-based interactive fiction games. That said, I loved the first season of their Walking Dead game and The Wolf Among Us, so I’ll still buy whatever Telltale puts out, trying to chase that high. Same with Bioware… But I’ll still try to avoid the railroading that can be found in those games!

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A random thought occurred to me last night while I was replaying Persona: would people enjoy the challenge of having certain characters locked behind a stat-wall? For example, if Riel wouldn’t become friends with you unless your intelligence was high enough, or Chase with low charisma? Then again, it is already hard enough recruiting certain characters at all, so maybe there shouldn’t be any barriers to interacting with them after that. What do people think?

Also, do people ever use the game’s pre-given names for their MC, or do they always type in their own?

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I always choose the custom name and I kinda like the stat wall.

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No. :neutral_face:

I mean, I think it could work, in some games, but as you’ve already said, it’s already pretty hard to recruit some of these characters, so I’d feel that it’s not something that would benefit the story. I haven’t played Persona, but I assume it would give you both multiple attempts at recruiting and the ability to grind your stats to high enough levels, both of which are not really possible in CoG/HG.

I generally choose a pre-given name, especially for fantasy stories. :thinking:

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Yeah I’ve played persona it’s not exactly like he’s stated it. In persona 5, you can rank up a confidant(important characters the player can interact with) and doing so will give bonuses like ranking up the medic’s confidant will give you a discount of medic items like a health restorative. Sometimes to rank up correctly you need a certain stat to be at a certain level. Essentially, you interact with the characters to rank up your ‘relationship’ with them and at certain times, you need a certain stat at a certain level to rank up.

Personally I don’t think this system will go very well with this game. You already have to be careful with the choices you make and adding stats to it would make it really hard to recruit characters. It’s like mixing dragon age(which I feel this game is inspired by) with persona. Sounds like a good idea but you’d need a lot time to play out how the different mechanics will mix together. Lastly, I find I do either one when choosing my MC’s name. The demo had really cool and interesting names for the MC but at the same time I sometimes want to choose my own name.

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Ok, I can see where Riel is coming from. :unamused: Sometimes it’s just…tiring…to interact with people who aren’t on your level.
Or in Chase’s case…why the hell would anyone hang out with a fuddy-duddy who doesn’t want to go out and have some fuuuuuuuun~ it’s only 3AM! :roll_eyes:

But then of course, this is a game and not real life, and people don’t really appreciate being ignored just because they don’t understand how stars actually work (Riel: How is it so difficult, what the hell) or how to run away from cops (Chase: It’s so simple) or because they don’t like swords (Blade: [gasp]) or puppies (Trouble: [indignant yelling]).

If it’s escapism, less interaction might not actually be a good thing.

However, I won’t reject the possibility outright. After all, we only have four-ish characters to interact with so far, and they’re really rather welcoming, so (for me at least) it’s difficult to imagine what it is you’re suggesting, the types of interactions that will be locked compared to ones that anyone would have access to.
If you’d like, maybe try to implement a rudimentary version with the Riel/Chase update, that way people have a better understanding of what it is you’re suggesting and can give more informed feedback rather than cobbling together an assumption from other games. In addition, you yourself will also have a better idea of whether or not it’s something that’s you’d like to go to the effort of coding and implementing it into the game.


Do I use the default names? Yes and no.

I find lists of default names to be a litmus test of sorts for the types of names I can get away with in a game.

For example: If I see the name Jason in a list, I can probably get away with using the name Mike. If I see the name Jacen, my character might feel more integrated if he’s named Michael.

That’s not to say I don’t ever use the default names (I tend to pick Rhiannon when I don’t want to go to the input screen on my phone–the keyboard is laggy–and I’ve used it enough that she’s starting to get her own personality), but I also like custom-building a character to their world, and sometimes that includes their name.
That and Ryner is just one. letter. off. from Ryder and I just can’t pass up the chance to play Aragorn.

edit: I also always use the default last names. They’re too good to pass up, lol.

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I do sometimes. Similar to what someone else said, I actually use the default names as a reference when naming my own character. It’s not a big deal to restart when the name doesn’t quite fit in but it would have saved me some trouble.

As far as the stat-wall question… I wouldn’t enjoy it. I’m just the type that tries really hard to recruit all characters and please everyone. I’m also they type that doesn’t get very creative with character building (which isn’t very common I would guess on this forum) so I tend to choose a lot of the same options during playthroughs. I have a very hard time playing mean, roguish or combat based characters. So I would be frustrated if I couldn’t interact with a character just because a certain skill wasn’t high enough. BUT I would be fine with being locked out of scenes with them as long as I can still recruit/befriend the character.

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I would not enjoy it in CoG/HG. For one, we don’t have save slots where we could just reload if we made a mistake in our choices especially the case where that’s the only point where we could recruit them. This would frustrate some readers who only play one playthrough.

As for default names, I usually use them and silly don’t. For example, in SoH, I used a default name but in TWC, I input a different name.

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I sometimes use them, for example if it’s a fantasy game and I play as an elf or something the default names would fit more than a name I can think of.

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I’m averse to the idea in the way that you’ve suggested, at least. THAT SAID, I’m not averse to it entirely, which is to say, it’s implemented subtly.
For example, maybe char X has a mysterious lockbox left over from their dead father. They’ve never been able to open it, but you, being the very high int MC that you are, are able to open said box, which contains a letter to them from their dead father. Obvious char X is overjoyed to hear from their dead father and feels closer to MC for having opened said box.
Or maybe you’re just fast and strong enough to prevent your buddy from being stabbed, and you grow closer because of it.
I’m basically just against the idea of char X saying “hey you not smert so we not gonna be frens >:c”. So long as there’s a believable reason for that stat check I’m all for it.
I also think it’s important to have other solutions using other stats. It doesn’t always have to have the same result, though. Maybe if you’re super strong you can break open the lock box and char X still gets the letter and is happy, but oh no! the box also contained a family heirloom and now it’s broken due to you smashing it open. Char X is still happy to have it open, as they’d never be able to get there without you, but less happy than they would’ve been if you’d just been smart enough to open the box.

All in all, I think it just comes down to your finesse in implementing these stat checks well. So long as it feels like the game is reacting based on your character’s choices and abilities, and not just “hey here’s an arbitrary stat check for you to pass to progress your relationship”, I think it’s fine.

I sometimes use the suggested last names, as I can’t always think of one that’s fitting. The only time I’ve used a suggested first name is when it was the same name I always use :stuck_out_tongue:

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I don’t think @rinari saying that characters won’t be recruitable if you have certain stats, only that certain dialogue options and scenes might be statblocked.

@rinari :scream: I don’t know your preferred pronouns!!! sorry! :confounded:

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They mentioned certain characters locked behind a stat check. From what I understand, they will be unrecruitable unless your stat is on a certain level.

They never said that.

Friends and interactions are very different from recruiting.

edit: hot diggity, we’re using the same damn quote, lol! :rofl:

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Oh I suppose your right. I may have misunderstood it. But either way, it’s still frustrating to have a stat check just so to be able to get along with a certain character or to unlocked certain scenarios.

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On the other hand, it also makes a character more real in the sense that…some people are choosy and selective about who they’ll talk to.
Is it good? Not necessarily, but I also don’t see it as an outright negative either.

I think it all depends on how it’s implemented.

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