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Thread: Wasteland 2 update: details on camera, HUD, dialog

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    Administrator Brother None's Avatar
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    Wasteland 2 update: details on camera, HUD, dialog

    The 25th Kickstarter update for Wasteland 2 is a follow-up on the video update, following up on the camera, the HUD and dialog.
    The last thing we want to talk about is the keyword dialog system. Many of our systems are designed to be a modern take on systems from the original Wasteland. We started with the Wasteland keyword system and updated it, adding layers of complexity that enable us to increase conversational reactivity.

    The foundation of the keyword system is the player building up a keyword library through interaction with NPCs and the world. The keyword list starts out empty, and as you speak with NPCs they will reveal new keywords to you. If the revealed keyword is only of interest to that NPC, it will go into a local list. You can click on words in the keyword list to navigate through the conversation. If the revealed keyword has importance beyond that particular conversation, it is put into the regional keyword list. These keywords are of interest to most of the NPCs you encounter that region. A third option, which is never required, is to type something in a nod to Wasteland 1s system.

    Keywords are also added to the keyword list through perception skill use and environmental description text. For example, if you use perception to examine an object in the world, your observations might reveal a new keyword. Or, if you explored the level and triggered the descriptor text of some object or feature, it too might unlock a keyword.

    The NPCs reaction to any given keyword can be affected by a number of factors including: the party composition, previous gameplay choices, previously used keywords, previous player responses to NPC questions, character skills, character attributes, item inventory, equipped weapons and armor, prior party actions, and CNPCs in the party. In other words, there isn't a one-to-one correlation between keywords and the NPCs response.

    It is important that the player listens to (reads) what the NPCs are saying, because often you can judge by their tone the right way to approach the conversation. For instance, in some cases using a keyword at a particular point of the conversation changes the NPCs answer to other keywords, or even ends the conversation all together.

    One of the suggestions from the fans was that the Ranger party should deliver a line of dialog instead of just barking a keyword. We really love this idea. Having full sentences creates a natural conversation flow. Additionally, this approach allows us to remove the ambiguity of keywords holding your mouse over a keyword will show you a preview of the sentence your Rangers will say.

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    Sounds like a ton of work. Those guys have the creativity for it though.

    holding your mouse over a keyword will show you a preview of the sentence your Rangers will say.
    Sounds like an excellent way to please the keyword system boo-hooers.
    Where are all my lovers, those who loved me so, before when I was beautiful, adieu the infidels. They are I don't know where, at other rendez-vous. However my heart has not aged. Where are all my lovers. In the sadness of the night that comes again, I stay alone isolated without any support. Without hindrance but without love. As a wreck my heart is heavy. I who before knew happiness, made place for my adorers, I am slave to my memories and that makes me suffer.

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    I should set a custom title It Wandered In From the Wastes

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    buy Defonten posters!

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    I should set a custom title First time out of the vault

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    I was getting fairly annoyed until the very end. I didn't like the keyword system because it made you seem like a moron who could only shout single words at people. If it is a keyword system but said as dialog then that will help a lot with immersion.

    However, it is kind of silly that this keyword system is meant to be a modern update of the original Wasteland system as though keywords were central to what Wasteland was. The reason Wasteland used a keyword and written manual system is due to the technical limitations of the time. Had they created Wasteland in the mid to late 90s when dialog systems were at the level we see in Fallout and the D&D games that is what they would have used.

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    I should set a custom title Vault Senior Citizen

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    Quote Originally Posted by Diospyros
    \ The reason Wasteland used a keyword and written manual system is due to the technical limitations of the time. \
    I don't think so. There's some other games that uses keyword system like morrwind, wizardry8, and so on. I don't think these game uses that because of technical limitations.

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    There wasn't enough space on the disc. That's - if i remember correctly - the main reason why the paragraph book exists at all. Nowadays it sounds hilarious, but back in the days, every kb was counting. Besides, Morrowind and Wizardry8 have been released ages after Wasteland.

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    I should set a custom title Look, Ma! Two Heads!

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    Having read of the keyword system intended implementation, I started to like it. What is the real difference between

    - having a list of ready sentences (as in FO1-2), or
    - having a list of keywords that too come with ready sentences (as here)?

    I don't see any, really.


    One more thing, how did you understand this:

    A third option, which is never required, is to type something in a nod to Wasteland 1s system.
    I'm not sure I get this. Does it mean I can type instead of clicking only? Or does it mean I can type in something that is not on the keywords list and still get the result, as if it was there? And if it's 'never required' - then why is this implemented at all?

    Someone clever, please explain it to me

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    Super Moderator Lived Through the Heat Death
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    You can type in words, like in the original Wasteland or in Fallout 1 (the "tell me about"-button). I'll guess you will also be able to type in the words from the keyword list. There is no reason why this shouldn't work. In the end, your keyword list on the interface is nothing else but a keyword notebook, so you won't have to note them down manually.

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    Still kind of new First time out of the vault

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    If I remember correctly, Fallout 1 had a similar keyword system, I believe I even remember typing words in. And although I did not use it other than a few times, it gave me a sense that I can talk with the NPC like I would to a real human.
    My point is that a keyword system (inserted because of the lack of space or not, it doesn't really matters), especially together/extended with the player typing-in questions adds a huge amount of RPG into a CRPG.

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    I should set a custom title First time out of the vault

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    Quote Originally Posted by dONALD42
    If I remember correctly, Fallout 1 had a similar keyword system, I believe I even remember typing words in.
    Wow...of all the times I've played Fallout 1 I never knew you could type anything.

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    Modder A Smooth-Skin

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    A third option, which is never required, is to type something in a nod to Wasteland 1s system.
    I'm not sure I get this. Does it mean I can type instead of clicking only? Or does it mean I can type in something that is not on the keywords list and still get the result, as if it was there? And if it's 'never required' - then why is this implemented at all?

    Someone clever, please explain it to me
    This is supposed to mean you don't need to type in keywords to progress in the game - you will get all the game and quest critical info through keywords. The "console" option is for extracurricular and flavour information - like in Fallout 1.

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    I should set a custom title Look, Ma! Two Heads!

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    Thanks!

    So this is merely an interface feature, that does not affect the gameplay - right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by egalor
    Thanks!

    So this is merely an interface feature, that does not affect the gameplay - right?
    Pretty much. You get every keyword needed for progress, but you can get extra information by typing in keywords you guessed.

    So I guess you can also guess a keyword you'd otherwise get, for example by perception, and kinda circumvent the acquisition of a keyword by using your own logic and knowledge?
    I'd like that.

    Moderate godlessness? Not likely.

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    Would never do that an post This ghoul has seen it all
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    Quote Originally Posted by woo1108
    Quote Originally Posted by Diospyros
    \ The reason Wasteland used a keyword and written manual system is due to the technical limitations of the time. \
    I don't think so. There's some other games that uses keyword system like morrwind, wizardry8, and so on. I don't think these game uses that because of technical limitations.
    yeah well Dialogue was something people did criticse about Morrowind to be fair. Wiki-Dialogue.

    Wasteland 2 should really have a bit more then just that. or no matter how well the text is written but the NPCs will feel like souless bags full of informations like an computer.

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    I should set a custom title Mildly Dipped

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    Fantastic update. Sounds like a ton of work, but if it really works as described it could be one of the most interesting and reactive dialogue systems to date.

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    One of the suggestions from the fans was that the Ranger party should deliver a line of dialog instead of just barking a keyword. We really love this idea. Having full sentences creates a natural conversation flow. Additionally, this approach allows us to remove the ambiguity of keywords holding your mouse over a keyword will show you a preview of the sentence your Rangers will say.
    So, it's the whole party talking and not the main character? I guess that means the full sentence for a keyword will always be the same, regardless of factors such as intelligence. That's too bad, I always enjoy getting to play an idiot. Also, it decreases the enjoyment of replaying with a completely different character/party.

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    Vault Consort Per's Avatar
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    The primary reason for keywords in Wasteland was they didn't have global variables as such. They had a number of workarounds to carry information from one map to another and keywords was one.
    Game help can be found in my Fallout guides.

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    I should set a custom title Vault Senior Citizen

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    Quote Originally Posted by Crni Vuk
    Quote Originally Posted by woo1108
    Quote Originally Posted by Diospyros
    \ The reason Wasteland used a keyword and written manual system is due to the technical limitations of the time. \
    I don't think so. There's some other games that uses keyword system like morrwind, wizardry8, and so on. I don't think these game uses that because of technical limitations.
    yeah well Dialogue was something people did criticse about Morrowind to be fair. Wiki-Dialogue.

    Wasteland 2 should really have a bit more then just that. or no matter how well the text is written but the NPCs will feel like souless bags full of informations like an computer.
    IMO morrowind has not ideal keyword system. For me it was good system though.
    But for distractor system, there are lots of bad examples like japenes girl game(some of them are good though), fallout3 and so on. For these examples distractor system is just mess of useless choosing sentence.
    So judging keyword system with morrwind isn't good idea IMO.

    IMO it isn't good idea to press developer to change dialog system since design of game is already done with dialog system.
    If the dialog system is change, lots of tricks will be ruined and delay develop time.

    IMO don't judge before play it. It would be good choice to developer to choose keyword system and it would satify us.

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    One of the suggestions from the fans was that the Ranger party should deliver a line of dialog instead of just barking a keyword. We really love this idea. Having full sentences creates a natural conversation flow. Additionally, this approach allows us to remove the ambiguity of keywords holding your mouse over a keyword will show you a preview of the sentence your Rangers will say.
    YYYYYYAAAAAYYYY!!!! Now this game will kick ass so hard we will kiss the moon!


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    Quote Originally Posted by AnchorsAweigh
    . . . regardless of factors such as intelligence. That's too bad, I always enjoy getting to play an idiot. Also, it decreases the enjoyment of replaying with a completely different character/party.
    While I'm not sure about the whole intelligence/dumb character playthrough option, you might want to re-read the interview, because it looks like they are trying to do something incredibly dynamic and reactive with dialogue in regards to:
    the order you ask things
    the order you discover things
    past decisions
    who (CNPC) you have with you
    what you're holding
    and more

    So the only time you would see the same responses on further playthoughs would be if you made the exact same characters, and completed the game in the exact same order with the same CNPCs while wearing the same items.
    Where are all my lovers, those who loved me so, before when I was beautiful, adieu the infidels. They are I don't know where, at other rendez-vous. However my heart has not aged. Where are all my lovers. In the sadness of the night that comes again, I stay alone isolated without any support. Without hindrance but without love. As a wreck my heart is heavy. I who before knew happiness, made place for my adorers, I am slave to my memories and that makes me suffer.

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