Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
I've been exploring Foundry and the missions for the last week or so. It's an impressive system that some creative folk have used to very good ends. STO, devs and fans alike, should be proud. Sure, the quality varies (folks are still learning but judging from the review threads they want to learn) and the ability to sort and search the mission pool is lacking. I'd like to be able to filter out farm missions or missions in languages I don't know and search by author or even by a particular reviewer (someone out there might share my tastes). Not everyone reads forums or is in a fleet, as we all know.

What does seem to be missing from The Foundry is a tool suite for live interactive missions with a storyteller/narrator/referee type puppeting NPCs, providing for live narration and dialogue with player-characters, and improvising events and effects on the fly. I don't know if it's practical to expand Foundry to include this element but it would be very helpful for RP oriented fleets and machinima folks.

You see it with the Storyteller system in SWG which is hugely popular amongst both roleplayers and event organizers. While Storyteller doesn't rely on instanced content the same basic system could be used inside instances to organize private and public events and more personalized, dynamic, mission content.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2
04-11-2011, 11:06 AM
Quote:
What does seem to be missing from The Foundry is a tool suite for live interactive missions with a storyteller/narrator/referee type puppeting NPCs, providing for live narration and dialogue with player-characters, and improvising events and effects on the fly. I don't know if it's practical to expand Foundry to include this element but it would be very helpful for RP oriented fleets and machinima folks.
THAT would definitely make my day. Ever since I left my NWN1 and NWN2 servers, I miss the power to just "ride the skin" of whatever NPC I placed or spawned and use it to directly talk to/interact with the players.

I don't think it will ever happen in STO, but there is no law against dreaming yet... in most countries.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3
04-11-2011, 11:19 AM
I've just recently, if belatedly, discovered the player run worlds of NWN2 myself. But it is a technique that dates back to MUD and MUSH roleplaying. While the puppeting aspect was absent (but could be faked with emotes) a narrating player, often with assistants, ran stories the same kind of way in Star Wars Galaxy's Storyteller system.

Here's a typical example from a while back. I'm the old dude, Mandash.

http://www.guildportal.com/Guild.asp...age=1#39083043
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 4
04-11-2011, 11:38 AM
Quote:
But it is a technique that dates back to MUD and MUSH roleplaying.
I remember them fondly from my student days... way back. Actually, I helped create some of the first text-based MUDs at my university.

And, yes, you are right. It was very similar when you were a GM.

NWN1 and especially NWN2 just gave you these marvellous (at their time) creation tools. It was just great. I do not expect that level of possible details from the STO Foundry editor. But puppeteering NPCs would truly be - a miracle in the paid-for MMO scene. Of course limiting it to your own scenarios/missions.

There would be no end to the stories you could tell... *dreams again*
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 5
04-11-2011, 12:08 PM
Having a DM mode is the biggest thing I've missed in MMOs like STO and LOTRO having come from NWN1 persistent worlds. It's hard to get into the MMO flavor of RP when you've had the world react and change based on characters' actions.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 6
04-11-2011, 12:21 PM
Same here... The freedom... *sighs*
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 7
04-11-2011, 04:11 PM
Well making a DM tool/client would be a huge undertaking, I think. You're basically asking for real time, in game foundry use, as I understand it and the foundry just doesn't work that fast right now.

The closest you will get, at least any time soon, is roleplaying. Many people in the RP community make up characters to play one off roles like an alien ambassador or something.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 8
04-11-2011, 04:56 PM
Yes, that is what we currently do in my Klingon RP fleet. Create more-or-less one time characters...
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 9
04-11-2011, 06:35 PM
Well, the way it worked with Storyteller (and I was more a consumer than a designer/storyteller there so I may not have this exactly right) was that you'd create premade templates. Think of them like the maps we have now. So that much would be prepared in advance. A highly organized story arc might involve particular maps and a structured narrative flow while many folks would just have small, generic, templates prepared that they could pop out as needed.

So you'd have Storytellers that would run tightly plotted adventures, not that much different from the scripted missions we have now, with the exception that they'd trigger state changes personally and could engage in dialogue with the players, through NPCs, and adjust the pace of things as warranted. This could actually fix the problem of some Foundry missions not working well with multiple players, for example. One guy's not just going to click through the text or trigger the foozle before everyone's in the right positions or knows what's going on.

Other Storytellers would have a backpack full of templates and parts they'd deploy to wing things. Say a selection of generic Stormtrooper checkpoints, campsites, starship wrecks, Jawa crawlers and bazaars...whatever. Then he could pull out the maps as needed to improvise as the players went racing off in whatever direction they thought the story was going. In Foundry this would be like being able to pick predesigned, but disconnected, maps up on the fly complete with NPCs and effects in place. Also he'd have the ability to tweak on the fly. Adjust the ships there or where a nebula might be, for example before hitting the "Okay, next map!" button.

Factor that kind of freedom into the ability to react to player-character dialogue or to riff on expectations, live, and you get something close to the roleplaying context that existed even before MUSHes and MUDs.

Tabletop.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 10
04-11-2011, 07:34 PM
I begin to suspect the two of us share a very similar decades long RP experience.
Nice to see us fossils are still around.
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