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Kest

Field training, lackey puppets

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I've been trying to come up with ways to increase the interesting part of character leveling in my game. I'm considering implementing some type of NPC puppet system. The simple idea in mind is that you throw a communications headgear device onto one of your lackeys, which transmits audio and video, then you sit down in your safe house, and talk him or her through (remote control them through) any part of the game. In the game world, you're just giving orders. But in reality, you have direct control of them, just as you would your own character. Each character would earn experience and be custom leveled just like the player character. The player could create specialists, then use any one of those characters for specific missions, where their specialty fits. There would be additional reasons to take over specific people. Species and gender will likely influence some things. The idea is half baked, and needs thought out some more. But one obvious issue that comes to mind is the fact that the game world's characters can't interact with the player in a personal way. What I mean is that I don't want to script dialog for NPCs to interact with the player character, then script additional dialog in the case of a lackey. While species, gender, and skills may influence the dialog, the player being himself or a lackey will not. This probably won't be a big deal, though. It's a futuristic setting, and typical characters won't know you. What do you think? Would this add any fun to the game? Do you have an idea that would be better, or one that would improve this one? Any input is welcome.

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The idea seems similar to remote operation in cybernetic canon like Ghost In The Shell or Shadowrun, where you "possess" cybernetic "dolls". In theory the player could simply be a sentient AI thats treated like an inanimate object by the people who use it, so any potential dialog can be rationalized for being curt or dismissive without any heavy conversation directed at the player.

The fun of it would be that the people who believe they are using a stupid inanimate AI are in fact being manipulated by it (as the player is controlling several people with different skills, who may not be aware they are being used).

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A knit pick really, but I would style it in the game as direct control. Cybernetic mind control, psychic mind control, spiritual possession, a control spell, there are lots of ways to go with it, but I would choose something that is more congruent with the reality of the player's direct control.

Its a good idea though, it gives the player more control and more choices over how the people on their team progress and increases immersion by not reminding the player he is controlling characters on a team by allowing his avatar do the controlling instead.

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Perhaps something along the same vein as the move 'Eagle Eye'.

Where the government controls people by telling them what to do and stuff.
Sort of anonymously holding them hostage.

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