Forced questing

In Age of Conan, my first character I rolled was a Stygian Assassin. I had planned to RP her as a killer, the type of amoral person who would be happy to end someone’s life in a heartbeat, and look good doing it.

Then I did the basic quests in Tortage, which involves you getting some thread for a cripple, delivering a love letter, some fish for a fat guy, getting beer for a tavern wench, and getting venom to make medicine for a guard.

I call this unhappy little chain of events forced questing. Forced questing means needing to do quests which are totally alien to the perception of a class in game, or in your own mindset. You can’t refuse them, which is what many players in character would do. Why would I, an assassin, go play errand girl? I can see a cleric or protector type, but all of AOC classes available to Stygians are very dark. You kill people, summon demons, and use magic that eats away at you.

The only option is to do them, or refuse. Even if you insult them they just send you right back to the errand. I tell some guy he is better off dead? He says “Stop giving me guff, will you help me or not?” As opposed to drawing on me or refusing to give me it, and another quest from the people who want him dead open up.

I really think quests need a revamp. A quest should be tailored to, if not a job or class, at least a good or evil side of a player. I can see why Bioware is pushing story now. In other games, it slides because there is less of a moral issue. But AOC prides itself on its dark grittiness. Conan wouldn’t skulk around stealing fish to feed a fat guy.

One Response to Forced questing

  1. Drew says:

    Amen to this.

    In Fallen Earth, I recall a quest in a starter town where you can either kill a particular person for a guy named Jagd or rat him out to the local sheriff. The quests change based on your choices, and Jagd even comes after you in Embry if you betray him. Cool!

    Of course, then I did some quests “out of order” in Sector 2 and ended up doing errands for each faction at Barret Manor after I’d already allied to the Techs. Not much sense that I’d go help the Lightbearers after the fact. Not so cool.

    I’m very curious to see what BioWare does with SWTOR.

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