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NPCs- the Dilemma
#1
In my time in Roleplaying (ESPECIALLY WoW-RP), I've noticed a lot about how people treat NPCs. I'm not saying everyone does this, though nearly everyone actively does it or atleast has done it a few times. The issue is- how we go about NPCs. Let me start off with an example.

Say we have the Defias Brotherhood. Defias are one of the first "bad guys" Human races are exposed to and range in level from 3 to 24. In the grand scale of things, they're very weak. Extremely weak. A level 70 character can solo Deadmines without any problem at all and kill hundreds of Defias without even chipping their weapon. I often see this translate, atleast in a small sense, to roleplay.

Joe creeps down behind the bush, watching the Defias. With impeccable accuracy and skill, he is at the first's throat, slicing it open with a sickening sound. He jumps at the next and hooks him square in the jaw, leading in with a stab to his chest. Grabbing the bow from his back, he shoots down the other two grabbing their weapons. He grabs a throwing knife from his shirt and throws it at an advancing thug. He picks up his things and walks off, five down and no sweat off his back.

In the great sense of things- this is a perfectly normal roleplay. It's well described, somewhat realistic- but the problem here is how simple the Defias are shown off as. They are played off as the level fives and sixes that they are, which pose no challenge to the player.

This doesn't just apply to the Defias- it applies to any kind of organization in game- even the Stormwind Guard. Just because you can PvE them easily and kill them does not mean that's how things would occur. Even if you're a super magus or assassin demigod, if you get cornered by twelve armed men, you have yourself a problem.

Now, I'm not saying that you should /kill, /quit, /reroll every single time you even so much as see an NPC heading your way- what I'm trying to say is that if you're in a roleplaying situation with other people- treat the NPC as if it were another PC. Just because you are you and they are just an AI doesn't make the character any less real. Sure, they don't have pages of history and facts about them- but they still are a being in the IC world.

Things to do:
+ Take numbers into consideration. Ten versus one wouldn't be an easy fight, no matter how badass.
+ Take who they are into consideration, not their level. A level 20 werewolf and a level 50 pirate, for example, are not powered by level. A werewolf would, at the very least, be quite a fair match to a pirate. If the NPC is some random bandit who probably has very little training, they would be an easier fight than a trained assassin.
+ Take weapons into consideration. A level 65 NPC attacking with knuckles would be nowhere near the fight as a level 10 NPC attacking with two long swords.
+ Think about the fight. If you get a few blows landed on you, you won't just shrug them off like your character does. Of course, it's up to you to fairly decide when you get hit IC by an NPC (seeing as their hits don't follow RP rules) Same apply with your hits on an NPC.
+ Take groups into consideration. If there are ten bandits standing around a camp, you're sure to draw attention if you attack one- be it by them shouting, the obvious noises of a fight, or just NPCs seeing you. Just because they don't aggro doesn't mean they don't see you and are apathetic to you being there.
+ Use logic. Would your character really kill all the NPCs there? Or would he rather just eliminate a few necessary ones. Or would he just rather sneak around them. Or would he just rather try and talk to them.

It seems like a lot of work to fight an NPC, but if you add roleplaying and thinking into action with NPCs, fights will be a lot more fun and realistic.
---

A little short, but I just want to hear out your guy's opinions on this. I see a lot of times people in roleplays talk about infiltrating places like the Deadmines or whatever, and when watching them roleplay they're just hopping from NPC to NPC and one-shotting them either with no roleplay or just ego-boosting emotes of self-proclaimed badassery.

Opinions, now.
Soyuz nerushimy respublik svobodnykh
Splotila naveki velikaya Rus'!
"A single death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic."
"Death solves all problems - no man, no problem."
-Иосиф Сталин (Joseph Stalin)

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#2
Yeah, I've seen this more than once. Just recently, I saw someone shoot a gun whilst right next to a guard. Very nice guide, Bolshe!
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#3
This has been discussed several times on the forums, actually fairly similarly to the way you put it. Still, nicely stated.
[Image: Q1-1.png]

"We are here on earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you different."
~Kurt Vonnegut
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#4
Qaza Wrote:This has been discussed several times on the forums, actually fairly similarly to the way you put it. Still, nicely stated.

Sankya very much.

I've seen the Guards discussion stickied. This is more expanding on that idea.

I saw someone "RP" a Deadmines run. And there are some stories left better untold. The whole RP can be summarized as:

"I am more badass than a fully developed criminal organization."

The question to ask, really, to the people who support the NPC leveling systems is: If a Stormwind Guard is level 65, and you are level 1- why do they ask you to deal with the Kobold and Defias problems; claiming it's too much for them to handle? 'xactly.
Soyuz nerushimy respublik svobodnykh
Splotila naveki velikaya Rus'!
"A single death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic."
"Death solves all problems - no man, no problem."
-Иосиф Сталин (Joseph Stalin)

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#5
I look at it from the angle of D20 gaming:
A level 3 fighter, which is a hero is substantially stronger than the level 3 warrior, or can be known as NPC guard or soldier.
A level 5 paladin will be better than a level 7 warrior at the points, he uses magic and the like.

Plus if you do not catch that, each level in d20 can be put like this
1st level = 1-5 in WoW
And this goes all the way to level 20, which is the epic characters like Medivh at level 100 in WoW.

So a level 30 guard in WoW is weaker in actual story line terms, not balanced guard NPC statistics than a level 24 character player
"I am not tolerant of anyone that thinks they are to good for ale! NO ONE IS TO GOOD FOR ALE!!! BUT THEN AGAIN! THE SCOURGE CANT TASTE IT AND THE DEMONS ARE SNOBS! HAHAHAHAHA" - Kemmal Stonesunder
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#6
I don't believe levels should be ever taken much into consideration. If anything, I'd call them skill in their respective field when compared with everyone else.

IE: Stormwind Guard VS Westfall Militia (a diff. of like 30 levels)- that makes sense.

But the leader of the biggest criminal threat to Stormwind being a level 24. elite compared to Stormwind's common cop doesn't make sense. That's like Tony Soprano being a bumbling boy able to kill ants and kick cats-- NYPD would have a field day.

Sl.Au.Gh.Te.R.
Soyuz nerushimy respublik svobodnykh
Splotila naveki velikaya Rus'!
"A single death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic."
"Death solves all problems - no man, no problem."
-Иосиф Сталин (Joseph Stalin)

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#7
Well said. Agreed 100%
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#8
Thankya. I don't think too many avid roleplayers disagree, just most people do it subconsciously. They aren't trying to be badasses, it's just monkey see monkey do. What's the point of RPing killing 100 NPCs if all it takes is a couple of clicks?
Soyuz nerushimy respublik svobodnykh
Splotila naveki velikaya Rus'!
"A single death is a tragedy, a million is a statistic."
"Death solves all problems - no man, no problem."
-Иосиф Сталин (Joseph Stalin)

PM
Reply


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