BatCountry wrote:Everybody who's saying "oh, a group of hand-made pcs are just random stat sheets," well, so is your lead character. Use your imagination! You don't need a personality archetype spoon-fed to you. A few lucky rolls of the dice and a bit of game-mechanic-paranoia will help develop a personality in your head whether you like it or not.
Agree! My Wasteland characters weren't blank stat sheets. They had names. I usually recruited Rocky and Bullwinkle into my party. With a lack of detail like that, you have to use your imagination. By adding the detail of your character's appearance, Fallout set itself up for the Chosen One syndrome, because the story has to account for your character's graphical representation.
The Let's Play Wasteland video is a perfect example of roleplaying. "Lily and her rangers" came entirely out of the player's head and the game's sparse details. You provided your story, the NPCs had their own stories, and the two meshed into one and the irritating refusal to follow orders simulated the character's personality in the group.
The group interaction in Wasteland 2 can (if we want) be much more involved and detailed than Wasteland and give you character moments and illustrations that depict story events that result from using your personal skills with the group.
The_Scorpion wrote:also i don't quite like the idea that there must be a very low cap or any cap at all on extra recruitables. If you want to restrict the player from picking up a small army on his way through the Waste Land, extra recruitables may be incompatible with each other (faction mechanics or whatever) or simply to expensive to have them permanently hired (salary? quests?). Balancing can be maintained through various functions, for example by the way Exp is gained and by the availability of equipment and loot and maybe also through limited AI scaling according to player's party size. So most options presented in the poll seem arbitrary to me.
Aeschylus wrote:Rally the troops... control the wastelands... pick your team and everyone else is a backup or replacement when one of the chosen dies... or if u feel like changing to a full melee raider squad or pack of snipers.
Agree and agree.
In my Wasteland 2 conception, using your personal skills to manage your group can be a way to raise skill levels and gain experience points. If you have low personal skills it will be hard to recruit and train NPCs and if you have high personal skills you can recruit an army of followers and reinforcements. All of which adds qualities to your characters and gives opportunities for story and character advancement and game choices. Maybe you want an army of followers, or maybe you want one very powerful recruit/friend who won't join a big group so you have to play one way or the other.
NPCs bring some history to the table, and you bring your imagination to the table. The game only has to simulate some simple characteristic, attributes or skills that gives characters individuality.
The discussion of the party size might be made irrelevant, without any strict limit on party size, but with some difficulty or personal skill that you have to develop to simulate training or recruiting your characters. Maybe an overarching Leadership skill, or maybe individual similar skills to what the NPC possesses that establishes some kind of personal or professional relationship.
You could make recruiting/training challenging, and keeping people in party agreeable challenging so like you might have to take time off from combat to rest and relax and to bond with your teammates. A NPC could start off as uncontrollable and become integrated as a party member over time. This training and recruiting simulation can be one small part of the game that isn't too difficult, and fun to play, and gives you a break from combat and exploration, and rewards you with character moments and experience points.
If it's difficult to incorporate party members, you can leave some incompatible recruits and others you don't need to hold the fort, send them back to their home town to check up on things, or send them off to explore on their own. There can be roaming adventurers like yourselves also in parties and also developing their skills and also improving their gear and your former party members and recruits could show up with them as friends or as enemies.
The game can semi-randomly generate NPCs who roam the wastes and you can encounter them and fight them or befriend them or trade with them. There can be characters who leave your party, join other parties and fight you. The permutations are endless.
The game can simulate stuff like that easily enough, by giving your skills and your actions an effect on the world and the characters so that by skill checks and attribute checks the NPCs will go one way or the other and change the story from there after you meet them. There should be a fair amount of city dwellers and shop keepers and so forth, but also NPCs who have their own lives and their own agendas that sometimes mesh with yours and sometimes don't.
I've suggested some ideas related to this topic that you might want to give your yea or nay on at the Google moderator, or if you don't see an idea that matches yours anywhere, suggest one yourself:
"It should be a challenge and a skill to get new party members to work well together and build a cohesive group. The agreeability of the NPCs should depend on your PC's history with them and what you've done together. Call it camaraderie simulation."
"You should be able to meet joinable NPCs in random encounters and add them to your party, or negotiate with them, or fight them."
"I want real alternate endings that that take different efforts, different characters, or different skills. Your actions and the NPCs you choose and the PCs you roll and the makeup of your party and their abilities should affect the order of events."
"With a robust skill set, the game could give you relationships among the NPCS and different endings depending on your interactions, not just a single win scenario. Become mayor of a town! Stop the evil robot menace or join it and take over the world!"
"If possible, there should be semi-random persistent NPCs who travel in parties and gain abilities and improved gear, who you can encounter on multiple occasions and maybe they can solve quests before you do."
"Save the pretty girl, let someone else save her, or let her die. If you save her she can join your party with benefits. If someone else saves her, she will join their party and you can fight her. Some characters will not join with her in the party."
- A note about this one - it's not worded very well because I had to be terse in my description. I posted a better summary here: