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Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:25 pm
by Tawmis
The idea came to me to post some threads about other Sierra games, when I was just digging through my email and found an ancient story I had written where the next King's Quest game would be Edgar (from King's Quest IV) seeking out Rosella to try and win her hand in marriage. It was, in my head, a cool idea because Edgar would technically be a king (with his mother - spoilers! - now dead).

So, I thought - given the chance, if you were brought in to help, or pitch ideas, or help direct (so let's avoid answers like, "I'd call in Jane Jensen/Al Lowe/Roberta Willians/Scott Murphy/Lori & Corey Cole/Mark Crowe/Christy Marx/etc" - and assume they're there too :lol: ) - to work on the next game.

So in this case - if you were a part of the creative team, what would you hope for in the next QUEST FOR GLORY?

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:19 pm
by adeyke
Don't.

The QfG series already suffers from power creep and various things associated with it. Going for 5 or 10 in a stat to 100 in the first game gives a great sense of progression. However, it's not really sustainable; even with just the 5 games, the weakness of the system was showing. QfG6 would have it even worse, since you get some downright amazing equipment, Paladin abilities, and spells in QfG5.

Also, the ending of QfG5 is highly variable. We don't know whether Katrina or Erana is alive, whether the hero is now Chief Thief and/or King of Silmaria, or whom he's married to (if anyone). A sequel would end up invalidating the choices the player made there.

And despite all the game's weaknesses, QfG5 did do a good job of tying up all the loose ends.

So instead of QfG6, I'd much prefer just a new adventure RPG with a new hero. Pretty much exactly like Heroine's Quest, actually.

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:31 pm
by Tawmis
adeyke wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:19 pm
Don't.
The QfG series already suffers from power creep and various things associated with it. Going for 5 or 10 in a stat to 100 in the first game gives a great sense of progression. However, it's not really sustainable; even with just the 5 games, the weakness of the system was showing. QfG6 would have it even worse, since you get some downright amazing equipment, Paladin abilities, and spells in QfG5.
Also, the ending of QfG5 is highly variable. We don't know whether Katrina or Erana is alive, whether the hero is now Chief Thief and/or King of Silmaria, or whom he's married to (if anyone). A sequel would end up invalidating the choices the player made there.
And despite all the game's weaknesses, QfG5 did do a good job of tying up all the loose ends.
So instead of QfG6, I'd much prefer just a new adventure RPG with a new hero. Pretty much exactly like Heroine's Quest, actually.
Well, they could do just that and still call it Quest for Glory VI, just as you said - maybe with the original hero retiring, and giving way to a new hero.

There's no limitations to this fictional game idea - so you could even do something similar to Pillars of Eternity II, where you can import your save game (which no one would probably still have for QfGV) to impact choices - or the game provides you a chance to simply pick options... so at the start of the game, you could have it prompt "Is Katrina still alive?" "Is Erana still alive?"

And maybe then start the game, with the original hero, giving a recap of their own adventures, which then inspires said new character to go out and become a hero themselves, so you have this passing down the torch effect. And you wouldn't have to worry about the previous QfG games this way, because each game went to a new land - the new hero could venture into a new land also (maybe with some familiar characters popping up here and there, if needed/wanted).

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:13 pm
by adeyke
I think calling it QfG6 in that case would do more harm than good, since that would discourage people who haven't played the previous games and give false expectations of those you have.

In QfG1, the export actually does carry some information about what you did in the game (i.e. whether you successfully drove off Baba Yaga or went straight to the castle after freeing Elsa). The sequels didn't make any use of that information, though, and QfG4 made one of the choices canon, regardless of what actually happened. (QfG2VGA actually does use the information to change some of the dialogue.)

The choices in QfG5 are even more significant, though. The hero made a huge difference to the world in the existing games, so if he turns down the throne and continues adventuring, his further heroic deeds would probably continue to make a huge difference. And if he does settle down, his role as king could really affect how Silmaria develops, which could then also have an effect on the world as a whole.

And if those choices really do affect things, then the questions about what happened in the past might be the most significant decisions you make in QfG6. But if those choices just end up being mad libs ("The great [character class] [name of hero], and his wife, [name of wife]"), then it's disappointing. It would be better to have nothing at all, and just place it in a different setting entirely.

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:17 pm
by Rath Darkblade
Hmm. I'm of two minds about this...

On the one hand, it's possible to continue the QfG series with a new hero (the hero's son or daughter?) and hand down decisions from previous QfG games, similar to what happens with the Dragon Age games (although it would probably be simpler, because fewer world-changing decisions are made in QfG).

On the other hand, it's probably better to stop QfG with the fifth game. For all its faults, as adeyke points out, the ending does a good job with tying up all the loose ends.

Heroine's Quest was amazing. :) Here's hoping that Hero-U is just as good!

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:23 pm
by Tawmis
adeyke wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:13 pm
I think calling it QfG6 in that case would do more harm than good, since that would discourage people who haven't played the previous games and give false expectations of those you have.
I can see where you're coming from - but for those about the "false expectations" - I would say, for example, King's Quest III wasn't Graham. It wasn't even a King who was a main character. King's Quest IV followed that, with once again, despite being called "King's Quest" was not a King. While, yes, they're still the Graham family (although in King's Quest III, you don't discover that till the very end) - they were not Graham himself (nor were they actual kings).

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:24 pm
by Tawmis
Rath Darkblade wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:17 pm
Heroine's Quest was amazing. :) Here's hoping that Hero-U is just as good!
I've been doing the beta of HERO-U and it's ... entertaining. Very different than Quest for Glory, that much is for sure. VERY different.

And Heroine's Quest - I never got far in that (not that it wasn't good, I just have way too many hobbies) - and got no further than being stuck in the snow fairly quickly outside of the town. :lol:

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:52 pm
by notbobsmith
adeyke wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:19 pm
So instead of QfG6, I'd much prefer just a new adventure RPG with a new hero. Pretty much exactly like Heroine's Quest, actually.
The world of QFG seems big enough for further exploration. One of the things I liked was the setting. An RPG that doesn't take itself too seriously. The new character could have nothing to do with the old one. The Elder Scrolls games do this. New lands to be explored based on other folklore: Eastern, Native American, Polynesian.

Things I would like to see is a more customizable hero. Maybe more races could be selected like a katta or minotaur. A liontaur would be cool, but would be tricky to implement. It would have a totally different skeleton and would move around very differently.

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:55 am
by adeyke
Tawmis wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:23 pm
adeyke wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 9:13 pm
I think calling it QfG6 in that case would do more harm than good, since that would discourage people who haven't played the previous games and give false expectations of those you have.
I can see where you're coming from - but for those about the "false expectations" - I would say, for example, King's Quest III wasn't Graham. It wasn't even a King who was a main character. King's Quest IV followed that, with once again, despite being called "King's Quest" was not a King. While, yes, they're still the Graham family (although in King's Quest III, you don't discover that till the very end) - they were not Graham himself (nor were they actual kings).
King's Quest maintained the Graham as protagonist streak for only two games before breaking it. That's not much time spent building up that expectation. Also, Graham in KQ1-2 got basically zero characterization, so it's hard to feel that invested in playing as him.

QfG, on the other hand, consistently had the same protagonist over all five games. And it's not just some character they made up; it's one that you could customize and develop. Every game allowed you to develop your character further, with a higher stat cap, and with the potential of new skills and spells. So a QfG player would be much more invested in playing as that hero than a KQ player would be in playing as Graham.

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:38 pm
by Datadog
Given a big enough budget, I think I'd like to see a QFG6 in the spirit of "Dragon Age" or "The Witcher", where's there both a hard focus on exploration, sidequests, and NPC interaction, but with modern, more manageable combat.

And despite QFG5 ending perfectly, I wouldn't mind carrying your choices over from that game into this one to keep the same character. But I'd also do the unthinkable - I'd treat this as the start of a new journey and nerf the Hero back to Level 0 by giving him amnesia so that he loses all his skills and spells, and then do the QFG4 gimmick where he wakes up in a strange place in a strange land. Basically, however you end QFG5, someone will still teleport you to this land at some point.

BUT THEN, and this is experimental, through the course of the game, not only do you gradually get your memories back, but you can reclaim some skills and spells and customize your new build based on everything you unlocked in past games. So instead of being an overpowered arsenal of abilities, you're now challenged to choose and refine what stays and what goes.

As for story, your path of king or hero can play a major factor in your starting perks, side-quests, and types of villains that'll come after you. There can even be a prophecy that speaks of a king and a hero, and depending on how your start, you'll have to follow the path of one, and find someone else to fill the role of the other. The same can apply for who you do or don't marry - especially Erana and Katrina who can both appear in the game to help, but both will make very different decisions about how to help. Your quest to stop an evil sorcerer can take a drastic turn if you married Katrina and then she shows up and tries to take matters into her own hands.

In fact, tons of imaginary money = that dream game we kept hoping Telltale would do where story choices actually change the plot. That's how crazy I want to go with this. Zero simplicity.

And set it in Fantasy Australia.

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:48 pm
by Datadog
One more thing: Let the game allow you to start your own Adventurer's Guild.

If you start in a land without one, one of the townsfolk can let you stay in an abandoned home. And while here, you can build and customize it into the land's first Guild (where you're the first to sign the guestbook with a flourish.)

Then you can post notices on the board and let junior adventurers run out to do odd jobs for you. Not main or side-quests, but simple things like if you run out of a common item, but don't want to waste time running across the map to get another one. It'll cost extra, but it can grant extra EXP to the townsfolk which could pay off in the long run.

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 10:23 pm
by Collector
Datadog wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:38 pm
And despite QFG5 ending perfectly...
Itchy feet make the heart go yonder?

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 11:21 pm
by Datadog
Collector wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 10:23 pm
Itchy feet make the heart go yonder?
Wrong choice of words. QFG5 ended with... some general attempt at closure? Somewhere in that ballpark?

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:58 am
by Tawmis
The character generator would be similar to what I mentioned in Police Quest (you can specify hair color, eye color, skin color, even gender).

I'd design Quest for Glory VI with the original hero talking about his tales... and how he (unintentionally) inspires one of his listeners to pack up and see if he (or she) could be a hero.

So on their road, the intro shows them riding on wagons and taking various forms of transportation across different lands, until they reach the city of Romeria (which would be, as you might have guessed) based on Rome, with coliseums, pillars everywhere, a senate, the whole bit. The hero finds Romeria is a city in desperate need of a hero.

The Republic of Romeria needed money to pay the legions, to build roads, sewers, aqueducts, and arenas, and to pay for the welfare programs that fed the poor. Elected officials were corrupt and the city was riddled with crime.

Our hero volunteers to help officials of Romeria try to set things right.

The main monster that lives deep beneath Romeria (but the hero or heroine needs to do a lot of things before they get there) is a Minotaur that feeds off the corruption from the city above. The hero/heroine learns that the Minotaur was once a great warrior who became obsessed with greed and fame, and was turned into the monster that resides in his soul.

Some of the other monsters our hero/heroine would encounter -

Sirens/Harpies at sea - would need to find a way to defeat them, get on their island to recover a specific item.
An ancient, dying Sphinx, who gives our hero/heroine advice and clues.
A Satyr, who becomes the hero/heroine's faithful sidekick, after being rescued by our hero/heroine. (Annoying as they are - think Cedric, but always dancing merrily)
Medusa/Gordon - similar to the Siren/Harpy - need a way to defeat her to recover a magical item.
Chimera - the creature that needs to be defeated to reach the Sphinx (which is imprisoned by the Chimera)

I'd start there. :)

Re: Designing Quest for Glory VI.

Posted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 7:28 am
by Rath Darkblade
Datadog wrote:
Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:48 pm
Then you can post notices on the board and let junior adventurers run out to do odd jobs for you. Not main or side-quests, but simple things like if you run out of a common item, but don't want to waste time running across the map to get another one. It'll cost extra, but it can grant extra EXP to the townsfolk which could pay off in the long run.
Hmm... this sounds like it could easily be manipulated by the hero. "Verily, fetch me a pint of beer!" ;)

Um, as for Tawm's post - sorry to be a pain in the asp, but there are a couple of things here that need changing:

- The Republic of Romeria seems to point to the Roman Republic. This region already has a name - Nova Roma. Magnum Opus is from there. :)

Towards its end, the Roman Republic was definitely corrupt and riddled with crime. Some of the elected officials, who did try to reform the system to help the poor, were murdered. So there's a very sound historical basis for all this.

Maybe someone could try to assassinate the hero, too. ;)

- Sirens, Harpies, Satyrs, and Chimerae are all Greek monsters, not Roman ones... although I may be nitpicking here - but I wonder if we can find something specifically Roman, or else you'd have QfG fans saying "We've seen Greek things in QfG5!" :( Then again, the Lemures (ghosts in QfG5) are Roman, not Greek. So perhaps we can have some leeway here. Still, here's a (very brief) list of Roman legendary creatures, which are different than the Greek ones. The Basilisk is definitely Roman, not Greek - maybe we can use it! :)

- A bit of nitpicking, but Medusa is not a monster (and neither is Gordon!) ;) I think you're thinking of a Gorgon, Tawm. The Gorgons were three sisters who were cursed by Athena, because Poseidon had his wicked way with them in one of Athena's temples. Of the Gorgons, Medusa is the best-known (but "Medusa" is her name, not a description). I re-wrote the legend of Perseus and Medusa a couple of years ago, so I know it extremely well. :)

- Satyrs are well-known for being drunk and lustful. How faithful one of them would be as a sidekick, I don't know. I would guess that the Satyr would constantly be arrested as a bloody nuisance, and the hero would have to bail him out of jail. :lol:

It may be that the Greek Satyrs was later affiliated with, and overtaken by, the Roman legend of the Fauns.

Finally, the Strix occurs both in Greek and Roman mythology, and may be the inspiration for later blood-sucking or flesh-eating creatures like vampires and ghouls. It may be worth thinking about. :)