DarkKnightComes' quest showcase

6 posts / 0 new
Last post
DarkKnightComes's picture
DarkKnightComes
DeveloperInterior DeveloperQuest Developer
Joined:
2020-10-12 14:41
Last seen:
1 day 11 hours ago

I made this quest as a showcase:
https://www.tamriel-rebuilt.org/claims/house-sale

also there are duplicate doors, but this should be dealt with when being merged afaik

AttachmentSizeDate
Binary Data TR_HlanOek_HouseForSale.ESP12.48 KB2020-12-13 00:25
Why's picture
Why
Lead DeveloperDeveloperInterior DeveloperQuest DeveloperReviewer
Joined:
2014-01-02 23:58
Last seen:
8 hours 59 min ago

Hi DarkKnightComes, I've had a look at your quest, and here are my notes.

First and foremost, you need to follow our ID naming conventions for your objects, NPCs and scripts. They need to be prefixed TR_m7_ at the very least, and I would encourage you to add a unique identifier to the scripts, items and activators relating to your quests - for instance, TR_m7_HO_House_. Your NPCs also require the usual TR-specific variables - see T_ScNpc_Mw_Map7 for the relevant setup for your NPCs. At the very least, they need TR_Map set to 7, this is used to filter specific local dialogue. Also, to distinguish between NPCs and their scripts, add _sc at the end of the script IDs.

Also, I think the cost/reward balance of this quest is way out of whack. A house, a full set of Master quality alchemy equipment, and many valuable ingredients and potions, for essentially just 1000 gold. Here's what I'd suggest: rather than having the Bosmer be hostile, have him friendly - and trapped behind the treasure door after a falling-out with his business partner Goler - who locked him in the stash and ran off with most of the product. He thanks the player for freeing him, and sort of awkwardly offer the player to take whatever they want from their skooma storage, as he's leaving the business and going to be a legitimate alchemist from now on. Then have him AITravel to the middle of the room and serve as a merchant from there on out, keeping the house.

Now, the specifics - objects and scripts:

TR_Goler Ralvayn (NPC)

  • Should have higher disposition to start with - I imagine he'd approach the player in a rather friendly manner, if trying to butter him up and swindle him.
  • The shirt he is wearing a Morag Tong shirt, he will need a different one.
  • Give him a 'thank you friend, you won't regret it' or something along those lines to say for the house for sale topic after the transaction has been completed.
  • Level him up a bit, he's a pushover.

TR_GolerGone (script)

  • add _sc at end to distinguish NPC and script
  • Needs the aforementioned standard variables, see T_ScNpc_Mw_Map7
  • As it stands, this script will continuously disable the NPC. Add in a check for GetDisabled to make sure this happens only once. The else return is also unnecessary.

TR_HouseForSaleKey (door script) 

  • Needs a doOnce variable - only give the messagebox and journal update once.
  • If Journal > 40, the door can no longer be activated and the player can never enter the house again.

TR_Door_Cornerclub, TR_DoorTrigger

  • I get what you're trying to do here, but this is not the way to do it. There are two other entrances to the cornerclub, so the script that checks for the player's return simply cannot be tied to a door (you'd have to cover all three, and that's just ugly). Instead, move the relevant bits of this script to TR_GolerGone (script), and update the player's journal when they get within a certain distance of the (now disabled) NPC's position.

TR_Hundhalas

  • Needs an NPC script and a higher level

TR_TreasureDoorUnlock

  • You've got two Activates in here, which results in some odd behavior. Currently, once opened, the door cannot be closed again.

General scripting tip: if you're going to script a door to do something when activated, don't use more than one Acticate command, it has the potential to go wrong. Instead, do something like this, so that activation behavior stays consistent:

 

Scripting activatable doors

Dialogue:
In general, this could use a little bit of proofing. Your dialogue isn't bad, but there are some errors, and the tone could be a bit more Morrowind-y. But I liked that you didn't infodump the player and kept your entries concise. 

house for sale:

  • So you're interested, huh? Excellent! It's a one-in-a-lifetime offer! once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!
  • Add an entry for after the transaction is complete, so the topic doesn't just disappear.

connected to the house:

  • This is a superfluous topic, just put what's here in the house for sale topic instead.

Greeting 5:

  • Honestly, I'd not have a greeting relating to the quest for the other patrons in the bar. Just refer to the house for sale topic instead. Perhaps have patrons (filter for the cell name) refer the player to the barman instead, so that there's one convenient NPC to talk to for the player for this stage.

Journal TR_m7_HO_HouseForSale:

  • "While being in one of the cornerclubs in Hlan Oek, I spoke with a man named Goler Ralvayn. He offered me a riverside manor for 1000 drakes. I accepted his offer and he gave me a key to said manor. I should head there now." --> Link to the main quest topic in the first journal entry: "While in one of the cornerclubs in Hlan Oek, I spoke with a Dunmer named Goler Ralvayn. He said he had a house for sale, and offered it to me for 1000 drakes. I accepted his offer and he gave me a key to the house."
  • "I tried using the key on the door of the manor, but it didn't fit the lock. He must've given me the wrong key. I need to tell him about it." --> Who is he? Mention explicitly who you're talking about, just in case a player forgets, or returns to this quest after a period of doing different things. 
  • "As I entered the cornerclub, I noticed that Goler is gone. Maybe I should ask someone in the cornerclub where he might be." --> Can be a bit more clear. "Goler Ralvayn is not in the cornerclub. Maybe I should ask the other patrons if they know anything about this house for sale."
  • "Dunmer named..."
  • "I entered the house, but I'm also hearing someone else. Maybe it's one of Goler's people. I need to be careful." --> unnecessary, and I don't think vanilla ever lets the player 'hear' anything through journal. On the other hand, what you could do instead is to have the wood elf Say something. In fact, if you change the wood elf into a female High Elf, there are two voice lines that you could use for the 'trapped in the back room' situation I suggested above - "Someone! Help!" (vo\h\f\Fle_HF001.mp3) and "Over here! Help!" (vo\h\f\Fle_HF002.mp3). Play those, and *then* you have a good excuse to actually have the player hear something and a good incentive to explore further.
  • "It worked! ..." such exclamations are best avoided, the journal is a pretty utilitarian piece of literature, with little need for flavor.

Journal TR_m7_OH_HouseForSale is marked for deletion but not quite deleted when I loaded this file, clean it out with TESAME.

A final, and very important point:
Testing, testing, testing! What are ways this quest might break? What happens if a player has already broken into the house before they talk to the NPC? What if they deny the offer, then break in, then accept it? What happens, as I already mentioned, when a player enters the cornerclub through a different entrance? What if you kill the quest giver? Does the quest stay active in the journal forever (it shouldnt!)? What if they've broken in, marked the location, and recall back into it, skipping the door the second time when the script on the door is what allows the quest to continue? (Addmittedly, that last one's a bit far-fetched)

DarkKnightComes's picture
DarkKnightComes
DeveloperInterior DeveloperQuest Developer
Joined:
2020-10-12 14:41
Last seen:
1 day 11 hours ago

updated the quest with suggested changes, im guessing the dialogue still needs some work

AttachmentSizeDate
Binary Data TR_HlanOek_HouseForSale.ESP15.59 KB2020-12-22 17:05
Why's picture
Why
Lead DeveloperDeveloperInterior DeveloperQuest DeveloperReviewer
Joined:
2014-01-02 23:58
Last seen:
8 hours 59 min ago

Hey S'wit! I had a quick look at the file, and this is definitely moving in the right direction. Dialogue could still use some polishing, like you said, I've given you some notes on that before I believe.

While playtesting I did notice a few pressing issues that needed to be addressed. First, the Greetings on Estoril were out of order, causing her to reply with her "Thank you for freeing me..." response no matter what choice option the player selected. TalkedToPC is, I think, only true for the first entry that comes up, and gets set to zero straight after that, which caused the issue. I moved the offending line down a bit and added a journal filter, so it won't get in the way and the sequence plays as intended.

More pressing, you have correctly implemented the AITravel, but the interior geometry and pathgrid made it pretty much impossible to get to Estoril or for her to exit her cupboard. That's not on you, so I've made some slight changes to the position of the door in your quest .esp, as well as the interior itself. Those changes should take care of all the AITravel wonkiness and door opening shenanigans - it now opens into the opposite direction. 

A few further pointers:

  • Reduce the distance at which the script on Golen updates the journal - 250 would be better, as it would require the player to move closer to where the NPC used to be.
  • The dialogue currently doesn't really explain what's going on, it could use a bit more work.
  • There are a few things in my previous review that haven't been addressed yet, like the feedback on Golen's disposition and the house for sale topic.
  • The Greeting 5 entries are currently at the very top of the list. They should be moved further down, to where the TR greetings are. Moving dialogue unfortunately is a pain, so it's easier to just add new entries down below somewhere, copy the details over, and then delete the existing ones. Also, the very top of Greeting 5 is reserved to a number of entries that are specific to another quest, and should always be at the top, so no Greetings should be placed above those.
  • Your NPCs shouldn't be prefixed with HO or your quest shorthand. TR_m7_Estoril is enough, not TR_m7_HO_Estoril. Same goes for the other NPCs.
  • You can put the journal update that you originally had upon entering TR_Hlan_Oek_6 back in - now that there's actually a voice, it makes sense to update the journal (when Estoril says her line) so that the player gets a clearer update prompt and so that people that play without sound know what's going on.

Then there are a few further (optional!) embellishments that I personally would consider - and will probably sneak into the quest, if this were a claim and I reviewed it. You can either add these yourself, if you feel up for it, or I can make these changes down the line (this claim has been a bit of a pain, and I don't consider these necessary for your showcase - you've done plenty, already)

  • I'd have Golen move to the little underwater cave just east across the river. There's a bedroll where he can hide out. Estoril or the barkeep could hint at this. This would give the player a way to get their money back and get some revenge.
  • I'd have Estoril also say the other voice line I pointed out, when the player gets closer to her (GetDistance player < something) or when the player descends the stairs (player->GetPos Z < somevalue), or when a bit more time has passed, your choice.

This is really close, now, and you've been doing a good job. Address the pointers above (the optional stuff isn't necessary), give the dialogue another pass, and check my original review for anything you missed, and then we'll finalize this.

I've attached your .esp with a quick edit to the door and Estoril's dialogue sorting, but I haven't addressed the other points yet. I will send you a temporary Thirr Valley file that includes the other interior and pathgrid fixes over Discord (file size is a tad too large for the forums and I don't want to create versioning confusion as the main file is currently checked out by someone else).

AttachmentSizeDate
Binary Data TR_HlanOek_HouseForSale_Why.ESP15.74 KB2020-12-25 00:12
DarkKnightComes's picture
DarkKnightComes
DeveloperInterior DeveloperQuest Developer
Joined:
2020-10-12 14:41
Last seen:
1 day 11 hours ago

updated the file

AttachmentSizeDate
Binary Data TR_HlanOek_HouseForSale.ESP16.91 KB2021-01-04 23:46
Why's picture
Why
Lead DeveloperDeveloperInterior DeveloperQuest DeveloperReviewer
Joined:
2014-01-02 23:58
Last seen:
8 hours 59 min ago

I don't have time to fully review this quite yet, but I did have a quick look at the changes you made since last version and they're good. The quest itself isn't quite done yet, but this claim has proven surprisingly intricate and frankly not the best claim for a showcase considering all the edge cases that need to be covered. In any case, what you've done so far shows that you're capable and that you take feedback well, so rather than further delay I'm happy to promote you. I am confident that you'll be able to contribute meaningfully to other quest claims. Congratulations!