knowing something/someone's name before you know it

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knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by SignpostMarv » Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:56 pm

Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.

Will Frontiers' engine support placeholder names for NPCs & items until you've actually learned the name, e.g. "Innkeeper" becomes "Bob N. Keeper" when you've discovered their name through reputation or conversation?
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Zolana » Sun Jul 28, 2013 2:00 pm

SignpostMarv wrote:Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.

Will Frontiers' engine support placeholder names for NPCs & items until you've actually learned the name, e.g. "Innkeeper" becomes "Bob N. Keeper" when you've discovered their name through reputation or conversation?


Hadn't thought of that, but now that you mention it, I have to agree! Really hope there's a way to get this in/it's already in the game!
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by DWMagus » Sun Jul 28, 2013 4:43 pm

SignpostMarv wrote:Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.

Will Frontiers' engine support placeholder names for NPCs & items until you've actually learned the name, e.g. "Innkeeper" becomes "Bob N. Keeper" when you've discovered their name through reputation or conversation?


I am irritated by this as well. Also, being able to know someone's name without an introduction. No name is said, but later on in the conversation, the name is mentioned and you're like "Who is xxxxx?" before you realize it was the other person's name.

I also like not knowing the name of the person you're talking to until you talk to them. Maybe show a questionmark for their name instead of a plaque until you do know. I know it's splitting hairs for me, so it may not exactly be the best idea to have.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Zolana » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:00 pm

Not knowing someone's name until you've met them definitely adds to the immersion (for obvious reasons), as well as puzzles (as if you don't know who Mr. Bloggs is, you'll have to take some time to look for him, rather than knowing exactly who it is, and where they are).
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Railboy » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:35 pm

Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.


This bothers me too - I'm looking into ways to avoid it, but it's going to be tough.

For instance in FRONTIERS cities have several names - a common name, a proper name, a historical name, etc. Ideally you wouldn't see those names on a map until you read it / heard it somewhere. Same goes for character names - you wouldn't know their name until you talked to them. In practice that's really, really hard to do. Not necessarily from a technical perspective but from a content creation perspective / quest design perspective.

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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Zolana » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:36 pm

Railboy wrote:
Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.


This bothers me too - I'm looking into ways to avoid it, but it's going to be tough.

For instance in FRONTIERS cities have several names - a common name, a proper name, a historical name, etc. Ideally you wouldn't see those names on a map until you read it / heard it somewhere. Same goes for character names - you wouldn't know their name until you talked to them. In practice that's really, really hard to do. Not necessarily from a technical perspective but from a content creation perspective. The map one in particular.


I'm sure a lot of us wouldn't mind a delay in order to get this implemented though (it is after all for the cause of greater immersion)! As far as I'm concerned, it's a delay worth having (if that's what'll happen should this get added) :D
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Paronomasia » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:40 pm

Railboy wrote:
Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.


This bothers me too - I'm looking into ways to avoid it, but it's going to be tough.

For instance in FRONTIERS cities have several names - a common name, a proper name, a historical name, etc. Ideally you wouldn't see those names on a map until you read it / heard it somewhere. Same goes for character names - you wouldn't know their name until you talked to them. In practice that's really, really hard to do. Not necessarily from a technical perspective but from a content creation perspective / quest design perspective.

Cross your fingers.

Oh yummy, that would be so neat, this! This and that, neat would be. Neat this would be, that. Neat that, this is... Niii..... :crazy:

Er, pardon. Hope to see this in Frontiers indeed! :thumbs:
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Gazz » Sun Jul 28, 2013 5:43 pm

Railboy wrote: In practice that's really, really hard to do. Not necessarily from a technical perspective but from a content creation perspective / quest design perspective.

I won't disagree there because you have a lot more varied content "to know" but in the X games, objects have a "known" flag.

It has different effects for different types of objects.

For something stationary like an orbital factory, you can see it on the map even if it's way beyond RADAR range - because you know where and what it is.

For mobile actors (space ships), you don't see them when they are beyond RADAR range because you cannot know where they went.

But if you "know" them, you get the detailed info of the close range scan even if they barely show up at long range.
You have scanned it before. You know these details.

One bit of information is enough for all that. =)
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by j624 » Sun Jul 28, 2013 6:07 pm

Railboy wrote: Ideally you wouldn't see those names on a map until you read it / heard it somewhere.


That depends on how maps are implemented. If it's a map you obtained somewhere, it could have names of unknown places on it, but if it's a map your character is making him-/herself, then the name would be unknown. It would be interesting to be able to buy a local area map from someone and suddenly have your map incorporate everything on the local map.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Darren Grey » Sun Jul 28, 2013 11:22 pm

SignpostMarv wrote:Something that irritates me a little in other games is you can know the name of something or someone before you've actually learned or been told it.


I think it might get very frustrating otherwise! Still, I'd be interested in seeing this tried as long as there was a good in-game system of learning many names at once. For instance if you're told to deliver x to person y, it can be assumed you're given their description too so you know their name in advance. Could be that just chatting to a few people in town would quickly reveal a lot of people's and location names, silently handled in the background of the game.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by XenoReaper » Sun Jul 28, 2013 11:33 pm

I also support learning the names as you go. It really adds another layer to the exploration theme- you are not just making sense of landmass and location- but people too! It also subtly encourages players to talk to everyone they see, and in a way that is (mostly) true to life. (Though I don't see "???" over people I meet, do you? lol)
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Zolana » Mon Jul 29, 2013 12:08 pm

XenoReaper wrote:(Though I don't see "???" over people I meet, do you? lol)


Don't see it, but I think it hahaha! Hopefully Lars won't implement a mechanism by which you forget someone's name. That part of reality I'd rather not have to deal with in game too :P
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by SignpostMarv » Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:52 pm

XenoReaper wrote:I also support learning the names as you go. It really adds another layer to the exploration theme- you are not just making sense of landmass and location- but people too! It also subtly encourages players to talk to everyone they see, and in a way that is (mostly) true to life. (Though I don't see "???" over people I meet, do you? lol)


I refer you to my jokey "Innkeeper" vs "Bob N. Keeper". I'd guess you'd likely know people by their occupations.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by DWMagus » Mon Jul 29, 2013 5:12 pm

XenoReaper wrote:(Though I don't see "???" over people I meet, do you? lol)


The other thing to keep in mind, is something like this could be used to differentiate between some people that you talk to and those that are just 'background' (unless you can talk to everyone)--or at least those that have some importance. I don't mind seeing "City Guard" over someone's head if they're at the gate in armor and carrying a pike. But the bar owner who will be giving me quests should probably have something to designate him from the locals who just want to tell you about how much they drank the night before.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by XenoReaper » Mon Jul 29, 2013 5:33 pm

DWMagus wrote:
XenoReaper wrote:(Though I don't see "???" over people I meet, do you? lol)


The other thing to keep in mind, is something like this could be used to differentiate between some people that you talk to and those that are just 'background' (unless you can talk to everyone)--or at least those that have some importance. I don't mind seeing "City Guard" over someone's head if they're at the gate in armor and carrying a pike. But the bar owner who will be giving me quests should probably have something to designate him from the locals who just want to tell you about how much they drank the night before.


That's true... as long as those generic NPCs are kept to a minimum it certainly makes sense. In other words, don't pull an Oblivion/Skyrim with the town guards... a small army of generic clones that constantly remind you of their presence. A couple of guards at the gates as well as the keep is enough to get the point across without breaking immersion, in my opinion.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Starfia » Mon Jul 29, 2013 8:07 pm

PLAYER: "Hello, again, Bob N. Keeper. I'd like a room for the night."

DANIEL: "Would you STOP CALLING ME THAT"
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Zolana » Mon Jul 29, 2013 8:21 pm

XenoReaper wrote:
That's true... as long as those generic NPCs are kept to a minimum it certainly makes sense. In other words, don't pull an Oblivion/Skyrim with the town guards... a small army of generic clones that constantly remind you of their presence. A couple of guards at the gates as well as the keep is enough to get the point across without breaking immersion, in my opinion.


On the subject of not pulling a Skyrim, one thing that completely destroyed my immersion was when, for example, you've just saved the town at the end of a quest for instance, and the guards say how much of a hero you are. If you speak to them immediately afterwards, all memory of that seems to have disappeared. Ruins the moment a bit to say the least. Essentially, what I'm saying is that if you do something, then if an NPC comments on it, please let them actually remember what the thing that you've done is! (If that makes sense/if anyone else knows what I'm on about?).
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by SignpostMarv » Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:33 pm

DWMagus wrote:
XenoReaper wrote:(Though I don't see "???" over people I meet, do you? lol)


The other thing to keep in mind, is something like this could be used to differentiate between some people that you talk to and those that are just 'background' (unless you can talk to everyone)--or at least those that have some importance. I don't mind seeing "City Guard" over someone's head if they're at the gate in armor and carrying a pike. But the bar owner who will be giving me quests should probably have something to designate him from the locals who just want to tell you about how much they drank the night before.


If you're exploring the world, wouldn't you rather spend the time figuring out who is letting slip secret knowledge and who is a drunken loon?
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by XenoReaper » Tue Jul 30, 2013 12:35 am

Zolana wrote:On the subject of not pulling a Skyrim, one thing that completely destroyed my immersion was when, for example, you've just saved the town at the end of a quest for instance, and the guards say how much of a hero you are. If you speak to them immediately afterwards, all memory of that seems to have disappeared. Ruins the moment a bit to say the least. Essentially, what I'm saying is that if you do something, then if an NPC comments on it, please let them actually remember what the thing that you've done is! (If that makes sense/if anyone else knows what I'm on about?).


Yes! I know exactly what you mean, and it irks me too. I think the lack of voice acting will allow for more reactivity and help to avoid this kind of thing.

NPC: (shouting as PC walks by) "Dragonborn! I named my firstborn son after you!"
PC: (engaging in dialogue) "Hello!"
NPC: "Are you new in town?"

Me IRL: "GAAAAAH!"
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Zolana » Tue Jul 30, 2013 12:02 pm

XenoReaper wrote:NPC: (shouting as PC walks by) "Dragonborn! I named my firstborn son after you!"
PC: (engaging in dialogue) "Hello!"
NPC: "Are you new in town?"

Me IRL: "GAAAAAH!"


Couldn't have put it better!
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by gad » Tue Jul 30, 2013 8:46 pm

I always felt weird about this too. A game I played recently, State of Decay, used a cool system for locations. If you are within visible distance and you stare at something long enough it reveals what it is. You could go a step farther that when you got there and "investigated" you learned the town/city/thing name. Like the sign, or asked someone "WTF AM I?!?!?!" That way when you see something initially from afar it is just "obscure location" then as you look at it more, zoom in w/ binoculars or visit it, you get a more descriptive name.

If the NPC/object/town names are initially programmed to be dynamic. You could initialize them at any value "traveler","stranger","aristocracy","nasty town" etc. Then as you spoke to the person depending on what you found out, like they were a jerk so you could have "rude traveler" etc. Or it could reveal their whole name. The whole "what is the next name" are fixed/determined by the story in your dialog choices, the information on what you read etc. I see it as super easy unless it is impossible to make these names for things dynamic in this way. The hardest part I see is adding all the "story" to add these level of description for people. Certain aspects are taken care of by the plot but most people don't actually write "intros" for NPCs in this way. I wouldn't mind help do this personally, as that seems like the most difficult part.

Like if I walk into a room, I see an "old man." Then I say good day "old man", and he says "F*ck off I'm old" and now I know him as the grumpy old man, or depending how I react, "funny old man." Depending on the dialog I chose, it changes what you see the person as. Or you just learn their name by taking that dialog route.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by SignpostMarv » Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:13 pm

XenoReaper wrote:
Zolana wrote:On the subject of not pulling a Skyrim, one thing that completely destroyed my immersion was when, for example, you've just saved the town at the end of a quest for instance, and the guards say how much of a hero you are. If you speak to them immediately afterwards, all memory of that seems to have disappeared. Ruins the moment a bit to say the least. Essentially, what I'm saying is that if you do something, then if an NPC comments on it, please let them actually remember what the thing that you've done is! (If that makes sense/if anyone else knows what I'm on about?).


Yes! I know exactly what you mean, and it irks me too. I think the lack of voice acting will allow for more reactivity and help to avoid this kind of thing.

NPC: (shouting as PC walks by) "Dragonborn! I named my firstborn son after you!"
PC: (engaging in dialogue) "Hello!"
NPC: "Are you new in town?"

Me IRL: "GAAAAAH!"


NPC to PC dialog could probably rely on a similar system that would facilitate NPC recognition (i.e. knowing someone's name before you know it)
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Delphis » Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:24 am

Why not use a real-world like approache? You are not the guy who moved to the region just a few days ago. Therefore you know the names of the villages and town around you already, just because you have lived here for many years. For regions further away, you only knows the names of the bigger cities, lakes, montains ...
Same for the NPCs. The further away the more important the NPC has to be to know his/her name in advance.

To learn new names there are different approaches. NPCs who sell you something can introduce themself. Like "Hi, I'm Bob, the barkeeper. Can I help you?". If a NPC gives you a quest, you will learn the required names from that NPC because he/she gives you a brief description of the person, lake, village, ... so that you recognize it when you have found it. Other sources are books, maps, or just ask NPCs how the river near their houses is named.

Open points: How to mark non-background NPCs if you don't know them already?
One option: not at all. You have to talk to other NPCs to learn about quest NPCs. E.g. the barkeeper tells you after you have ordered your beer that he has heard that person x might need help, is looking for someone to do a job, ...

Just my ideas how the game could handle the naming problem without introducing to much overhead.
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by antihuman09 » Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:06 am

This is an intriguing idea. It's one i'd absolutely love to see implemented in the game even if it's just to a limited degree.

Non-essential NPCs could be labeled "blonde villager" and so on. They could be used to locate important characters. Offering limited information in a random order (either hints at physical description or location) until the player was able to devise where/whom he/she is. Each bit of information could make the general location highlighted on the map become increasingly more specific. Initially, it could encompass an entire part of town finally closing in to a precise location and eventually a name (as you'd recognize them based on their description.)
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by arone8900 » Wed Aug 27, 2014 10:44 am

Hi All,
Maybe an idea to colour code, say to have replaceable NPC like City Guards, Traders/merchants(who may be killable but need to return after set time to ensure no irreparable damage is done) with blue names, then people start of with red labels, barkeep, tavern wench etc till you speak to them and learn their name they appear a neutral grey.

ALso to pinch an idea from Morrowind as chatting is text based, have some words highlighted eg

"my name is Bob Wople, son of Hop, from the village of lakespring, I am a story teller have you heard the legend of 'Lake Winreap'?"

Where the muddy brown signals known/auto-added entries(once added recognise players name or place on map), and green requires selecting and prompts a more info style response, say if clicked on lakespring:

"Oh Lakespring, tis a beautiful village near the lake of Winreap, you must go they do the most delicious cakes" (maybe structured so any character can give same generic response).

Sorry if any of this seemed a bit obvious, hope its of value to you!
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by yarnevk » Wed Aug 27, 2014 1:21 pm

Since this is an exploration game so there better not be any floating names bobbing over peoples heads, not job name, not title, not given name. That is nothing but a shortcut mechanic for people that do not even have the time to take a few steps to explore the NPCs in town. If you want to know if the person behind the bar is the innkeeper you talk to them just as in real life, maybe they are the dishwasher, and maybe they like you enough to give their proper name. In Elder Scrolls (even upto ESO) it has always been done by mousing over them once you get close to pop up their name (the gaming equivalent of saying hi so I don't have a problem if that is given name rather than job title). If you have MMO floaty names you do not even see the NPCs anymore becaise a mob is nothing but text all over the screen, so they might as well nerf the characters and have floaty names only. Just like quest markers on the compass, you do not even see the roads anymore.

(I realize this was a necro, but it would not hurt to get an update on the implementation)
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Re: knowing something/someone's name before you know it

PostPosted by Railboy » Wed Aug 27, 2014 6:35 pm

When you focus on a character there will be a HUD above their head with either a generic identifier (eg 'Professor') if you don't know them or a name if you do know them. But you'll be able to switch this off in the immersion options if you want to play it old-school.
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