Scenario planning problem: writing and level design

For writers working on documentation, story prose, announcements, and all kinds of Wesnoth text.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

Post Reply
tribes55
Posts: 119
Joined: June 10th, 2012, 4:29 am

Scenario planning problem: writing and level design

Post by tribes55 » July 19th, 2018, 10:51 pm

Hey guys!

The story of a campaign is, in my eyes, the most interesting part of a campaign. Therefore, it is important to me while playing/designing a good campaign that there's a good, consistent and interesting story which ties together the campaign.

The campaign's name is "A Friendship Tested", and you can find out more about it here ( viewtopic.php?f=8&t=48482 ) if you wish to play it.

Let me outline the basis of the campaign:
The foundation of the story is the relationship between two peoples, a clan of Dwarves and a community of Humans (of the outlaw faction.) The story takes part in the Estmark hills, far from the large cities of Wesnoth. They have had a reciprocal relationship in terms of reliance and trade, and have at one point signed or verbally agreed on guarantee to come to each other's defense. The alliance is tested, as the Blackhands refused to come to the Hollians' defense when raided by other human splinter groups. However, they are forced to help each other when an Orcish incursion threatens both of their security.
That's it.

So, we come to this point in scenario four where I am not sure what to do.
Spoiler:
The problem is I don't see a fun way I can make the scenario if the player chooses to not aid the human group. Does anyone have a good idea how I could make the level interesting in this case?



If you're interesting in helping with this project beyond this thread, or would prefer some real-time discussion to bounce ideas, feel free to contact me via the official Wesnoth Discord. My name is "Varicks" on there. Otherwise, feel free to post here or PM me. :)

Thanks for reading, and I appreciate any suggestions! :)

Samonella
Posts: 357
Joined: January 8th, 2016, 5:41 pm
Location: USA

Re: Scenario planning problem: writing and level design

Post by Samonella » July 21st, 2018, 1:44 am

I would need a bit more context to be any use. What are Gandfal etc all trying to do? Just passing through? Maybe they have to cross the battlefield, and if they decide to ally with the raiders then they also have to defeat the enemy leader. But if not, they just have to cross east-west, between the battling enemy keeps on the north and south sides of the map.
The last few months have been nothing but one big, painful reminder that TIMTLTW.

Creator of Armory Mod, The Rising Underworld, and Voyage of a Drake: an RPG

tribes55
Posts: 119
Joined: June 10th, 2012, 4:29 am

Re: Scenario planning problem: writing and level design

Post by tribes55 » July 21st, 2018, 2:35 pm

Samonella wrote:
July 21st, 2018, 1:44 am
I would need a bit more context to be any use. What are Gandfal etc all trying to do? Just passing through? Maybe they have to cross the battlefield, and if they decide to ally with the raiders then they also have to defeat the enemy leader. But if not, they just have to cross east-west, between the battling enemy keeps on the north and south sides of the map.

Hey Samonella,

Thanks for responding. The context of the scenario is that there was an event at the northern entrance of the Dwarf clan's cave that required attention; they do not need to leave the cave, but they want to deal with the Dwarves.

Here are some notes I wrote down when I was trying to design the scenario:
Gandfal, Squid and party all reach the Northern entrance to find Orcs encamped North. Squid points out that he recgonizes
the humans between them and the Orcs as the individuals who raided their town.

* Originally, I was going to offer a choice to the player; help the people or don't. However, I don't see the latter
proving to be fun gameplay. What am I supposed to do? Skip the scenario? Kill the bandits?

Gandfal makes the call to help the people push back the Orcs to the north. This scenario is unique, though it does
share similarities with the first scenario, because Gandfal is restricted to his unique units he obtained from the scenario
prior.

-- potential flavor event, as a subsitute for the original dilema: Messenger comes to alert Gandfal of the looming Orcish
assault on the hall. Gandfal must decide to close the gates or continue helping the humans.

User avatar
ResExsention
Posts: 95
Joined: March 17th, 2018, 12:00 am
Location: Alberta, Canada

Re: Scenario planning problem: writing and level design

Post by ResExsention » July 22nd, 2018, 6:23 am

I am not exactly a professional author or anything, but I really do know how to bring the action into a scenario. It seems like you have the option to help the humans planned out, and you're looking for a way to do something about the latter option. There are several ways.

- If the player decides not to help the humans, why not just let everything go and turn the humans into their own team by changing their team_name= key to something that the other sides don't share? Then suddenly everybody is fighting each other.
- If you want to build on that, try adding a sort of human relationship status variable at the start of the campaign, and, since variables carry over scenarios, just add or subtract to that variable whenever the player decides to help out the humans, and then later, during some battles, evaluate what that human relationship variable is at with the [if] tag and use that to decide whether the humans help out, in turn.
- To build on that, even more, try making the less preferred option be less costly than the others. For example, if you side with the humans, your human relationship variable goes up by one, and you share your gold, losing perhaps 50 of your gold and giving it to the other team, in comparison to choosing to abandon the humans, losing one human relationship point though keeping your gold.
- Also, have you considered, that not helping the humans in every "help or not" scenario has some sort new side come in and start reinforcing the humans? It really adds to the action. You know, just suddenly get two enemy armies to stage your battleground as their battleground or something similar? :whistle:
- Or maybe, use [move_unit] and bring the leader and a small force of some newly created loyal units to go and directly attack Gandfal. That's an option, too.

So yeah, these were what I had in mind. These are not the only options out there, though. If someone else comes up and suggests a great idea, go ahead. A carefully written story is better than no story! ;)
I am a ranger and my WML knives will implant themselves in your back.

Creator of the abandoned campaign Royalties Forgotten and the work in progress campaign Purger of Evil.
Maintainer of Fate of a Princess.

tribes55
Posts: 119
Joined: June 10th, 2012, 4:29 am

Re: Scenario planning problem: writing and level design

Post by tribes55 » July 24th, 2018, 7:39 pm

Wow, some great ideas Res. Gave me some ideas for some upcoming scenarios.

Post Reply