Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

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Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby CaptainPatch » February 26th, 2014, 1:50 pm

I'm trying to put myself into the shoes of my four (five with Angela) Rangers and hearing the news that BOTH locations are in dire need of help if they are going to survive. I'm guessing that everyone in the party -- especially if Angela is present -- is very much aware of just how vital both locations are to life in the Wasteland. Facing the dilemma that saving one means the other would most likely die, the solution that comes to my mind is to split the party and try to save both. After all, if it's possible to split the party and have each segment operate independently within a given location, why not allow the segments to travel to separate locations? It would undoubtedly result in a MUCH greater challenge for each segment -- like skin-of-your-teeth tougher probably -- but it strikes me as the kind of risk the Rangers would take, since it means the assured loss of one location if they _don't_ try to save both simultaneously.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby sparkee666 » February 26th, 2014, 8:29 pm

I like that idea splitting the party to travel to different locations on the world map, but if you can do that would that mean one quest would have to wait while you solve the other quest? wouldn't it make programming a more reactive world harder?
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Drool » February 26th, 2014, 8:42 pm

If they let you dodge the choice, it ceases to be a choice.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby ClashFan » February 26th, 2014, 8:59 pm

Vargas could send some of those Rangers lounging around in the Ranger Citadel to the other one, but I guess that never crosses his mind.
:D
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby CaptainPatch » February 26th, 2014, 9:44 pm

ClashFan wrote:Vargas could send some of those Rangers lounging around in the Ranger Citadel to the other one, but I guess that never crosses his mind.
:D

That's been my complaint about Vargas and HQ all along. The ONLY rescue team available is this small party of green-as-you-can-get cadets?? Just sending ONE of the bodies from HQ would be better than sending no one at all -- and that ONE would at least already have significant experience.

There MUST be a Damn Good Excuse as to why HQ didn't dispatch _anyone_ other than the newbies, and then to only ONE location. The people of the Wasteland WILL be demanding an explanation -- and "No comment" simply cut it.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Valar_Omega » February 26th, 2014, 11:08 pm

I have to agree this seems odd to me as well. Why they leave such an important choice to a group of new recruits on what is essentially your test. Do they just not care if AG and Highpool both gets wiped out(which is very likely since you are sending poorly armed and inexperienced ranger to do such a job) Not only are they leaving the challenge of saving one of these places entirely to a group of recruits, but your dear lead leaves the choice to you and send no one out to either the other location even through it would take about as long to reach there from ranger citadel as it would for your group to get there. And no good reason is given, citadel is not attacked or cut off hey have the man power to easily save one of these locations and still hold the fort at citadel(which you know looks as well fortified as a citadel that are well known to be hard to attack).

Now I understand the reason one has to die(the gods of C&C demand a blood sacrifice!), but if the choice is not believable it would not suspend disbelief well enough to draw the player in. I mean even just having something like ranger citadel suddenly being attacked at the same time and having to choose where to go on your own would work(citadel being able to hold out easily with out your help of course). You can be cut off from ranger station and they could be unable to contact either of these places. Or they can send another group of ranger to the other location that gets wiped out by a group of robots in the way so only the location you pick makes it.

Really, this choice is making it seem everyone one is right to hate the rangers....either that or Vargas is just the worst general there ever was and he really thinks he is doing the best that can be done.
Last edited by Valar_Omega on February 26th, 2014, 11:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby SagaDC » February 26th, 2014, 11:15 pm

Honestly, the whole "no other rangers available" thing is very much a "gameism" - and those are hard to avoid in any RPG. Most RPGs inevitably end up throwing crisis-situations at the player, and then expect the player to imagine that the virtual world their in really is incapable of otherwise handling the problem. It requires a certain suspension of disbelief, as most video games do, because they're never going to be able to explain everything to a discerning player's satisfaction.

Still, I will admit that it might make more sense to tweak the story a bit to send "another" team of rangers to whichever location you don't go to. The easiest way to explain the location's subsequent destruction is to simply say that they failed, presumably killed by synths, with the possible addition of a new "quest update" to find out what happened to the missing squad.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby CaptainPatch » February 26th, 2014, 11:46 pm

I'm thinking that the smart thing to do is to temporarily knock out communication to HQ. Ag Center and Highpool start broadcasting their SOSes, but no one is answering at HQ. The ONLY Rangers picking up their pleas are the newbies. Of course, in the absence of any other Rangers, both locations start to beg/plead/demand that those Rangers come to _their_ aid and to hell with that other location. Without HQ to make the decision for them, it's up to the newbies to decide for themselves"
A) Go to Ag Center ASAP.
2) Got to Highpool ASAP.
3) Go to Ag Center leisurely (hoping that some other, more experienced Rangers get there first).
4) Go to Highpool liesurely (ditto).
5) Don't go to either and hope that some other Rangers take care of the problems.

After the party finishes with the location they chose (and the other location is toast), _then_ HQ comes back on the air and explains why the radio hadn't been working. (Blown components, sunspots, sabotage, whatever. Any explanation will do.)

Of course, the drawback of this approach is that no one in the party will be able to promote until after the location is completed. (Or both locations are dead.)
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Lexx » February 26th, 2014, 11:47 pm

Me personally, I would add dialog text to the guys at the ranger HQ that says something along the lines of "why we couldn't help? We were in the northern mountains because of whatev and only came back approx an hour ago."

Problem solved. :>

Doesn't even need additional scripting. Just add a keyword to some of the dialogues and be done with it.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Wile » February 27th, 2014, 2:05 am

What if, Ranger Citadel would also come under aggressive reconnaissance at the same time when Ag Center and Highpool are under attack? Sending another squad would be too risky, because it could be ambushed, let alone weaken Citadels defenses and open it for full scale attack. It could give good reason not to help AC or Highpool. Helping Rangers to repel the attack, should speed up the process who is behind all this trouble with Ag Center and Highpool.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Nanoman » February 27th, 2014, 2:06 am

Here's just a quick idea how it could be done, with some neat reactivity.

1. must enlist raiders near the radio tower
2. must not have Angela in party
3. both check with Vargas (maybe not a requirement)

in case you recruit Angie, Vargas sends inexperienced fresh batch of recruits out of necessity, just to be slaughtered.
But if Angie leads them, they somehow manage to save the designated location, but not without a lot of casualties and some different states like blocked out areas in case it's necessary to retain intended replayability. So it's kinda win/half win scenario.
Also Vargas gets pissed on radio if you took Angela with you.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby CaptainPatch » February 27th, 2014, 10:10 am

Lexx wrote:Me personally, I would add dialog text to the guys at the ranger HQ that says something along the lines of "why we couldn't help? We were in the northern mountains because of whatev and only came back approx an hour ago."

Problem solved. :>

Doesn't even need additional scripting. Just add a keyword to some of the dialogues and be done with it.

1) Would they _really_ TOTALLY empty out the Citadel to go attend to some task? At a minimum, there would be someone left behind to monitor and coordinate Communications.
2) They send EVERYONE out with functional radios. (The thing used to call back to HQ to get party members their promotions.) But in your premise, the _HQ_ staff left HQ and didn't bother to take a radio along?
3) If no one is at HQ to receive radio communications, then no one in the party can be promoted until the HQ staff returns to HQ.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby tomimt » March 1st, 2014, 8:19 am

I've been playing the beta just now and I do agree, that this decision segment is a bit poorly executed as it is now. It is stated in the game, that BOTH places are important to the area due to that the other produces food, other water, there fore the kind of "choose and die" scenario works very badly in this. It just doesn't feel plausible as if the places would be important then the rangers would surely send an another team.

Better way to handle this would be that the player still has to choose, but the other place is given to other ranger team to tackle, thus the player can't have any experience or nor mission perks from the other place.

The scenario what inXile is trying to do here works much better on the Rail Nomads camp, where you can make the choise between two tribes or try to make peace between them. But Highpool and AG ceneter choise just doesn't mesh up well. It just feels a bit of a bad writing.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Lexx » March 1st, 2014, 10:17 am

CaptainPatch wrote:
Lexx wrote:Me personally, I would add dialog text to the guys at the ranger HQ that says something along the lines of "why we couldn't help? We were in the northern mountains because of whatev and only came back approx an hour ago."

Problem solved. :>

Doesn't even need additional scripting. Just add a keyword to some of the dialogues and be done with it.

1) Would they _really_ TOTALLY empty out the Citadel to go attend to some task? At a minimum, there would be someone left behind to monitor and coordinate Communications.
2) They send EVERYONE out with functional radios. (The thing used to call back to HQ to get party members their promotions.) But in your premise, the _HQ_ staff left HQ and didn't bother to take a radio along?
3) If no one is at HQ to receive radio communications, then no one in the party can be promoted until the HQ staff returns to HQ.


I never wrote that everyone from the HQ would be outside and I also didn't wrote that nobody takes a radio with them.

If the other teams are outside and somewhere in the northern part of the area, they will be too far away to get down to Highpool / AG Center. And the remaining staff at the HQ... simply can't go outside, because someone has to stay there. I thought this would be obvious.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby CaptainPatch » March 1st, 2014, 1:04 pm

Lexx wrote:If the other teams are outside and somewhere in the northern part of the area, they will be too far away to get down to Highpool / AG Center. And the remaining staff at the HQ... simply can't go outside, because someone has to stay there. I thought this would be obvious.

Then you're still in the exact same situation that HQ is pointedly telling Highpool and Ag Center "One of you WILL be left to die. (Maybe even both if our rookies are up to the challenge.)" Ranger credibility throughout the entire Wasteland plummets. "Those are people that can't be trusted to fulfill their commitments. They can't be counted on to keep promises."

I'm starting to think that perhaps the best approach would be to go ahead and let the player decide which community he will attempt to save. Then HQ announces that it will dispatch a second team to the other location -- but that second team WILL fail miserably in some fashion. (And adding some new headstones in the Ranger cemetery.) At least then HQ can say, "At least we tried, and the failure cost us too!"
Last edited by CaptainPatch on March 1st, 2014, 4:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Lexx » March 1st, 2014, 2:02 pm

Uhm, I never said I would solve such a problem with it. My stuff is all about "why none of the other rangers in the HQ came to help?" and nothing more.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby sparkee666 » March 1st, 2014, 4:28 pm

Drool wrote:If they let you dodge the choice, it ceases to be a choice.

if they don't give you a choice it ceases to be a choice.

If you can save both places but at the cost of dividing a party with specialised characters it would make that option exponentially harder than going to one place and saving it with all four rangers. I think the real issue is the technical considerations of doing something like that.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby Drool » March 1st, 2014, 9:19 pm

sparkee666 wrote:If you can save both places but at the cost of dividing a party with specialised characters it would make that option exponentially harder than going to one place and saving it with all four rangers. I think the real issue is the technical considerations of doing something like that.

No. The issue is that the entire point is forcing the player to choose between them. To force the player to make a choice instead of doing everything like happens so frequently in games. It has nothing to do with technical limitations. It's all about the player being forced to make a choice and then deal with the consequences of that choice. Saving both isn't a choice.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby CaptainPatch » March 1st, 2014, 10:34 pm

Drool wrote:The issue is that the entire point is forcing the player to choose between them. To force the player to make a choice instead of doing everything like happens so frequently in games. It has nothing to do with technical limitations. It's all about the player being forced to make a choice and then deal with the consequences of that choice. Saving both isn't a choice.

I can see as how they would want to force to make that kind of choice. But as I see it, forcing the player to make that specific choice is an outstandingly Bad Idea. The fact that the decision boils down to a party of newbies makes the entire Ranger organization look pitiful, incompetent, ineffectual, etc. It demonstrates to the entire Wasteland that if the decision is being left to raw recruits, then the leadership at Ranger HQ is delusional and self-deluded as to its own importance. "Legends in their own minds" as it were.
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Re: Saving both Highpool and Ag Center

Postby sparkee666 » March 1st, 2014, 10:36 pm

Drool wrote:No. The issue is that the entire point is forcing the player to choose between them. To force the player to make a choice instead of doing everything like happens so frequently in games. It has nothing to do with technical limitations. It's all about the player being forced to make a choice and then deal with the consequences of that choice. Saving both isn't a choice.

I understand that the reasoning is to force the players to choose one or the other, if both issues are happening at the same time you would have no choice, but you control a party of rangers there still would be an option of saving both areas. This is different than playing the HP quest then starting the AG quest later. However, I think it would be hard to distribute experience, set events up, and establish the feeling of both events occuring at the same time to do something like that.
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