This thing has been bugging me for a while now. The amount of menial stuff I have to do in games, even when I'm pretty much max level can get very annoying. This problem popped back into my mind while I was grinding for stuff in Control. I'll start with RPG games and circle back to looter games later. Ctrl+F Control if you're not interested in RPG games and wanna just talk grey, green, blue and gold.
So I assume that most of us have probably played some sort of RPG games like Skyrim at some point. While playing them, the player always encounters quests that have an objective like "Collect 10 Werebadger hides" in one way or another.
These types of games also often have some sort of billboards that have these sorts of non story driven quests on them. What has bugged me for a while is the lack of the ability to post something on them for myself.
Let's pretend for a while and simulate a fictional RPG quest
So I'm a pretty much maxed out character in an imaginary Nordic RPG, let's call it Heavenfringe. I get a side quest to enter a dungeon. Unfortunately the door is blocked by a legendary rope that can only be sliced apart by the legendary Sword of G'drion. Now the quest giver has the sword and gave it to me. Shame that it's broken and I need some stuff to fix it. The quest needs me to get
-100 Iron Ingots
-Ebony Dragon Scales
-Enigmatic Emblems of Jilll
to fix my sword and break through the rope
Now then. I am a seasoned adventurer, so I have about 250 000 gold in my inventory and 10 iron ingots. I just had 660 iron ingots, but I used 650 of them to craft a better shield.
I would like to pay a village 1000 gold to source me 90 iron ingots. Sure, I could do it myself, but at this point it would be just boring dismantling of junk, mining, looting easier dungeons or fast travelling through every shop in the realm to buy all their stock. It would be so nice to just post a request on a billboard and pay for someone else to do the menial part of this task. The price for the ingots is peanuts to me anyway, I've already done the work.
Now for the Ebony Dragons. Now, being a well traveled adventurer, I know where they roost. It should provide me a healthy and interesting challenge. I'll be happy to take care of the Ebony Scales all by myself.
As for the the Enigmatic Emblems. Nope, never heard of them. Now I know there's a academy for wizards in the town of Snowykeep. Maybe if I went there and posted a notice on the billboard asking for information about said emblems. That should work.
Or maybe I could go to the residence of the evil Jilll worsippers and just flag the Emblems as an item of interest in the menu. Then I could have a conversation option asking about the emblems while talking to people who are sure to know something about them. I'm sure one of them could point me to the right direction. Or at least to a direction to someone who might know something about them. For example a simple peasant might just say
"I don't know anything about that"
a local lord might say
"I don't know about them, but talk to the inkeep in of the Rabid Raccoon just the north of here, they might know"
and the tavern master might say
"Don't know about them myself, but the'res this wizard called Moira Barry who comes here every evening, she's sure to know. She likes to sit in that table. Wears black robes and a pink hood, can't miss her"
And then the wizard tells you that the emblems are dropped by golems in the Arkay mountains, easily recognized by the huge eye they have on their shoulder.
Or then you could just get a note on your billboard message after waiting for a while pointing on the right location, seeing that not all games have the budget to pull that off.
That's it for the RPG games, now for Control
Now for the looter shooters and Diablolikes. I don't really play games like this. I love Control and am playing it again with RTX on and the DLC. This is a spectacle fighter with really tight gunplay and combat. Yet I found myself farming for a certain component needed for some weapon upgrades, over and over again. The component is only dropped by some enemies that only spawn in very limited numbers and I had to Google the location and methods to get them. That was really, really bad. I just don't want to farm stuff in a game like this. Here's a Control specific solution.
The game constantly offers time specific challenges to face harder enemies all over the Metroidvania map. Like "you have 20min to kill these extrahard enemies in
I would love to have an option to specify just what loot I am looking for. My train of thought on this one is something like this.
"Yeah, I'll kill your legendary enemies, I like the challenge. But I don't need the legendary mods they drop, I need rare/uncommon tier materials. Right now I'm missing some Essence of Whatever and I'm tired of killing the same easy moldy dudes over and over again. Just please let me tell you what I need and adjust the drops accordingly, I'll have much more fun this way. You get your legendaries killed and I'll get my mold"
Hell, I wouldn't mind a lower droprate, just any chance of getting the stuff I need without the save/reload loop would be a huge improvement. Any sort of option to adjust the need for a specific type of loot would make Control so much more fluid and engaging.
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