Player driven narrative

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One of the major goals I feel like we have is to allow player decisions to have consequences and to have meaningful results from the decisions that they make, so it seems like people can really create their own stories.[1]Aimi Watanabe

The world of Verra will be the same on each server, but Nœuds will develop differently. Different servers will have different narratives. Things that happen on one server may not happen on another.[2]

We want as many people as possible to experience the main server Narrative. These will branch at different scales, but largely at the personal level. Where things change is at the Node level – different parts of the story will be unlocked based on where and when Nodes grow. Unlocking a part of the story in a certain way locks out progression of the story in a different way. You’ll see different antagonists, different NPCs, and different calls to action depending on what’s happening with the server at that time.[4]

It redefines what the players will experience in an MMORPG to come into a wilderness that is devoid of really any structure outside of what the community creates themselves; and then what can be created can be changed, if they want to experience a storyline that's been seen on another server, but you're fighting a dragon because you're near a mountain and the other server's fighting a Kraken because they're near the coast and you want to fight that Kraken because of its drop table. If you want to meta it or because you just want that under your belt: to be the server first to take out that Kraken and you have yet to develop the node there, it's incumbent upon you to manifest that in the game.[5]Steven Sharif


Narratives (Meta-stories) that play out on a particular server are driven by various story arcs.[6][7][8][9]

There is of course a meta-story. That meta-story gets informed by regional stories and regional outcomes; and depending on how players progress within their personal stories, that could be either racially based or could be their class-based. They could be a per-node basis. All of those things support a grand structure of the meta-narrative.[7]Steven Sharif
Q: What is your vision for the overall player story when comparing the more emergent personal stories versus the more curated story arcs?
A: The narrative keeps in mind what the meta narrative is of the server; and that's something we have generally kept relatively close to the chest. It's something that we don't want to spoil leading up to our testers participating in Alpha-2 and Beta and eventually launch. It is however true that there is a meta narrative that exist within Ashes. There is a purpose why you are on Verra again; and the supporting narrative structures are there to reinforce what that meta narrative is. So, players will have insight into that as they travel and adventure within the world.[6]Steven Sharif

Narrative events

Narrative Events help shape the story of Verra based on the choices that players make during key questlines. While narrative story arcs take time to develop across a server, Narrative Events will show players that their choices play a bigger part in shaping the world around them through individual actions.[10]Peter Bisulca

Narrative events allow players to shape the story arcs that unfold on their server through the choices they make in key questlines.[10]

Server history

L'histoire de chaque serveur sera suivie et visible par les joueurs.[14]

Nous allons garder la trace de l'histoire du monde afin de pouvoir raconter aux gens le récit jusqu'à ce jour. Un tout nouveau joueur, qui arrive après six mois, peut jeter un œil à chaque serveur, ce que chaque serveur a réalisé, comment le serveur a abordé l'intrigue ; et ils peuvent décider par eux-mêmes quelle communauté ils veulent rejoindre, à quelle version du monde ils veulent prendre part.[14]Jeffrey Bard

Arcs Narratifs

Alpha-2 early preview of the story arc UI.[15]

Story arcs are like a pre-packaged tabletop campaign. They contain all of the NPCs and quests and monsters- all the things you need to make a cool fantasy story. They're not procedurally generated... We write all the dialogue and we construct all the narrative beats and everything like that, but they will enter the world dynamically depending on the state that the world is currently in; how players have built up specific nodes, what races control various nodes. We have plans to include lots of different things on top of that, but we don't have any quest hubs or anything like that in this game, because players build up all the cities. So we had to get a system that looks at what players are doing and can inject content into the world that makes sense for what they're doing.[16]Skott B

The Blood Still Due story arc unlocking at The Tower of Carphin.[17]

When story arcs come online, they change a lot the environment. They update what monsters are in the world. They create quest NPCs... and then new Pathways can open up through the environment.[18]Skott B

Arcs Narratifs are unlocked by multiple types of player activity within each server.[19][17][16][20]

Every stage a node develops it's unlocking narratives, storylines, it's changing the spawn population of the area around it, changing what bosses exist, it's triggering events where you may have legendary dragons attack the city. It's basically writing the story of the server based on the actions and determination of the players. So, you may experience a dungeon one month earlier and have a completely different story that relates to this location the next month, because something has changed either geopolitically or from the node standpoint.[20]Steven Sharif
Even player driven mechanics will still have story components. There will be a reason why the player driven mechanic is available or required of the player; so every system that's created touches a story.[25]Steven Sharif
  • If there are too many other major arcs happening at the same time in the same zone, a story arc may need to wait its turn, even if conditions are right for it to be unlocked.[19]
  • Arcs Narratifs drive one or more storyline quests within the game.[27][28][29][30][9]
    • Story arcs can branch into different stories with multiple possible endings depending on the quest objectives that players complete during each chapter.[27][28]
    • The developers will try to ensure that story arcs in future expansions flow on from existing story arcs, regardless of the different possible outcomes.[27]
  • There will be a variety of different types of story arc content at different scales, with different cooldowns to suit different types of players in the game.[32]
We must provide enough of this content at varying scales such that it isn't worthwhile or economical to control every single story arc in the world. Some will be smaller in scale and production value, and thus, will move faster and have shorter cooldowns before they're reintroduced.[32]Skott B
info-orange.pngCertaines des informations suivantes n'ont pas été récemment confirmées par les développeurs et peuvent ne pas figurer sur la feuille de route de développement actuelle.

Certain story arcs can be unlocked through the bulletin board system. Certain requirements would need to be met in order to access story arc quests.[36]

Story arc chapters

Quest journal showing story arc chapters.[37]

Within the context of these story arcs, there are specific points that they can pivot to tell a different story. That different story can be based on predicates that are in the world: from a player decision standpoint, from a cultural representation standpoint, from situational to which node gets developed. There's a lot of different components that interact with the way the dialogue and narratives play out on a particular server; and what that means is- and I've said this from the beginning many sandbox MMORPGS, they do not create as much curated content as theme-park MMORPGS; and their excuse for doing that is because they incorporate player-driven mechanics. But that's a bit of a cop-out and it's the opposite approach that we've taken with Ashes of Creation; and the reason for that is, if you give the player a door and there's nothing behind that door then opening the door is meaningless. So what we have to do is we have to create a very functional story arc system that provides content in many different ways, but is behind a door of world progress or world development that is then executed by the player population. And that's how we construct our narrative systems.[8]Steven Sharif

Each chapter (phase) in a story arc can cause changes across the entire server, such as environments, monsters, PNJs, Quêtes, and pathways.[29][18][7][8][9]

  • Players can progress a chapter by completing story arc quests within the timeframe that each chapter is active.[29]
    • Phase timers are shown (in the quest UI) to indicate how much real-world time is available to complete the quests in each phase.[28]
    • If the player completes all quests in a particular chapter, they will need to wait until the next chapter to obtain further quests.[38]
    • Story arcs can branch into different stories with multiple possible endings depending on the quest objectives that players complete during each chapter.[27][28]
It's not just a matter of completing the laundry list of things that the NPC has you do, but you pick from a whole bunch of objectives, many of them optional. Some of them, if not most of them, hidden when you first undertake the quest. So go dig up a guide, or blaze your own trail, or whatever; but depending on which objectives you complete, those are the things that help the server aggregate what is going to happen in later phases of the story arc. And that's across all of the players participating during that time frame: what objectives they decide to complete.[28]Skott B
  • Story arcs can last for days, which reduces pressure to log in daily to remain competitive.[39]
Story arcs normally progress according to the passage of real-time, which is clearly indicated in your quest journals. Even if a zerg guild throws all their resources at a story arc, they can't lock anyone out of participating by doing all the participation on their own. You'll have the time indicated in your quest journal to finish the content available in that chapter.[32]Skott B
  • Most story arcs will repeat with a cooldown, but major story arcs will only occur one-time: These can be replayed, but in a non-interactive way where any choices made do not impact the world.[39][40]
The cooldowns between arcs repeating will also be quite long- proportional to the length of the chapters, but we're still in pursuit of the right numbers there. You can't do the individual quests again until the entire arc restarts.[38]Skott B
  • Some events will only be available while story arcs are in certain chapters.[38]

Quêtes d'histoire

Les Quêtes d'histoire peuvent avoir de multiples étapes. Ces étapes de quêtes peuvent être échouées.[30]

Il y aura beaucoup de quêtes différentes qui auront des étapes dans l'histoire ; et ces étapes peuvent être éventuellement échouées. Vous pouvez franchement rater une histoire ; ce qui n'est pas terrible quand on y pense, mais en même temps ce risque rend votre investissement beaucoup plus important.[30]Steven Sharif


Voir également

Les références

  1. Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (28:11).
  2. Direct, 2017-05-19 (37:03).
  3. Direct, 2019-12-17 (1:10:30).
  4. Interview: Ashes of Creation on Building Their Virtual World, 2017-04-13.
  5. Direct, 2017-05-22 (28:02).
  6. 6.0 6.1 Direct, 2024-02-29 (1:23:07).
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 Direct, 2022-04-29 (1:05:37).
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 Direct, 2022-03-31 (1:15:29).
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 9.6 Direct, 2018-01-18 (39:08).
  10. 10.0 10.1 Types of Events on Verra.
  11. Entrevue, 2023-07-09 (59:31).
  12. Blog: Know Your Nodes - Scientific Node Type
  13. Direct, 2017-05-26 (15:37).
  14. 14.0 14.1 Entrevue, 2018-04-20 (9:20).
  15. Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (14:14).
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (3:32).
  17. 17.0 17.1 Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (1:22).
  18. 18.0 18.1 Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (6:30).
  19. 19.0 19.1 skotty-story-arc-2.png
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 Vidéo, 2018-04-05 (35:01).
  21. Direct, 2023-04-07 (55:22).
  22. Direct, 2023-03-31 (1:00:16).
  23. Direct, 2022-10-28 (32:52).
  24. Direct, 2017-06-01 (37:39).
  25. 25.0 25.1 Direct, 2019-05-30 (1:18:16).
  26. Direct, 2017-05-26 (15:37).
  27. 27.0 27.1 27.2 27.3 Direct, 2023-04-07 (58:39).
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 28.3 28.4 Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (14:20).
  29. 29.0 29.1 29.2 Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (12:47).
  30. 30.0 30.1 30.2 30.3 Entrevue, 2018-10-20 (2:36:25).
  31. Vidéo, 2023-09-29 (2:59).
  32. 32.0 32.1 32.2 32.3 skotty-story-arc-1.png
  33. Entrevue, 2023-07-09 (47:05).
  34. Direct, 2023-03-31 (59:10).
  35. Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (16:42).
  36. 36.0 36.1 36.2 36.3 Direct, 2017-10-31 (29:50).
  37. Vidéo, 2023-01-27 (9:43).
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 skotty-story-arc-3.png
  39. 39.0 39.1 Direct, 2023-03-31 (49:32).
  40. Vidéo, 2023-03-31 (25:20).
  41. Direct, 2020-07-25 (1:50:20).