Welcome to Dev Game Club, where this week we continue our series on The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. We talk a little bit about how leveling appears to work, finding quests and using the journal, and just heading off on your own. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.
Issues covered: two roads diverging in a wood, the various Tongs, having some fantasy etymology and naming conventions, the emergence of groups and politics, a huge leap forward from prior Bethesda games, clear analogies to Forgotten Realms, the Dark Brotherhood quest lines, murder triggering a quest line, quests being tied to guilds, worrying about the flexibility of the game to support player choices, grinding reputation in an MMO as opt-in, the QA/dev speedrun challenge, game exploits vs bug exploits, fictional identity to align quests vs clear differences between main and side quests, getting lost on the "roads," modularity and reuse, going deep and losing focus, committing to a character concept, the "good" assassins, etymology of cantor vs canton, the hugeness of Vivec City, tracking a serial killer, trying to track down the Morag Tong under the Arena, the trade-offs between single-character and party RPGs, raising your open skill, "I want to kill people but I want to be good!," opposing the old guilds and the new in the underbelly, cities are their own thing, surprise moment to introduce a spell, opening up all the variables as fodder for quests, adding layers of backstory pieces as you go, going deep into every bit of content, your major skills and how they contribute to leveling, born under a bad sign, the ability to break the game, loving the game because of its flexibility, the user experience problem, not reading the effing manual, having the strategy guide, success breeding stagnation and not pursuing the bugs, isolation and bringing in new talent and the same people making the games, building up technical debt and the costs of servicing technical debt, making different triage decisions and the balance of your focus, sailing the Ship of Theseus, managing scope and risk, 404'ed credits, changing the feel with dual wielding vs the grenade, player overwhelm with choices.
Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Emil Pagliarulo, Witcher III, Fallout 3, Factor 5, Rogue Squadron, Reed Knight, Xbox, Dragon Age 2, Baldur's Gate, Ultima, Dungeons & Dragons, Just Once/James Ingram (obliquely), Breath of the Wild, Less Than Zero, mysterydip, NetImmerse/Gamebryo, Billy Idol, Grand Theft Auto (series), Uncharted (series), Ben "from Iowa" Zaugg, Halo (series), 343 Industries, Jaime Griesemer, UbiSoft, Resident Evil Village, Kirk Hamilton, Aaron Evers, Mark Garcia.
Twitch: brettdouville or timlongojr, instagram:timlongojr, Twitter: @timlongojr and @devgameclub