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Do Video Game 'Barks' Annoy You?

Gaming 2012/06/28 19:00:00
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One unfortunate aspect of writing video games is that NPCs (non-player characters) have to react dynamically to a real person. The game world is usually populated by many NPCs, not all of them important, and it would be literally impossible to have them respond differently every time a player interacts with them. As a result, players often hear the same "barks" over and over. And over.

A couple of years ago, Kotaku writer Kirk Hamilton pointed out that enemies in "Splinter Cell: Conviction" can sometimes say the protagonist's name an overwhelming amount of times in a short span of time. More recently, a random throw-out line from town guards in "Skyrim" struck players as so odd that it turned into a meme: "I used to be an adventurer like you, then I took an arrow in the knee." Do these repetitive barks annoy you, or do you take them in stride?

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Top Opinion

  • Kyle 2012/06/29 05:04:06
    No
    Kyle
    +8
    I have fun with it, besides it'd be unrealistic to expect the developers to come up with infinite responses for NPC characters.

    Skyrim meme

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Opinions

  • Sandman366 2012/12/10 19:31:10
    No
    Sandman366
    Some are funny, some are annoying, and some are reminders of "Dude, you're awesome" (even if it's a common achievement, it sounds awesome).

    Then some turn into memes! ("Let me guess - someone stole your sweetroll." Nah, I stole everyone else's though. XD)
  • calvin236 2012/12/10 03:52:37
    No
    calvin236
    Fun to annoy other people.
  • Dyonus 2012/12/10 00:37:24
    No
    Dyonus
    Most of them are pretty funny. Once I hear them over and over, I start to tune them out.
  • Corsair 2012/10/31 07:24:21
    No
    Corsair
    It doesn't bother me that much since I understand games. In hindsight, if the game developers spent a majority of time on NPC dialog, would the game really be as great? Probably not, due in part that their focus is on bringing a great gameplay experience rather than focused on what the NPC should say next. WoW (World of Warcraft) takes a huge advantage in dialog. In WoW, if a person clicks on an NPC enough times, they get annoyed and express it in dialog. "*click* Greetings. *click* what would you like. *click* how may I help you? *click* leave me alone. *click* go away *click* Don't you have anything better to do? *click* GRRRR!!!" They won't attack you, but it's quite entertaining because each NPC has something different to say. Other than that, it's not something I'm worried with.
  • mikeeonly 2012/10/07 16:02:43
    No
    mikeeonly
    it's part of the game
  • Blind guardian 2012/10/05 12:19:44
    No
    Blind guardian
    The people who make the games can not come up with an unlimited amount of respones for the NPCs
  • Soot The Fallen 2012/08/26 03:49:48
    Yes
    Soot The Fallen
    FALCON PAUNCH!
  • Lemonzerozero 2012/07/14 19:39:45
    No
    Lemonzerozero
    +2
    would you rather have silent npcs? BORING.
  • Michael 2012/07/11 21:31:22
    No
    Michael
    Some are pretty funny! :D
  • 001 2012/07/10 21:01:27
    No
    001
    +4
    They're fun, especially the Skyrim ones :)

  • Kid Neon 2012/07/10 17:07:27
    Yes
    Kid Neon
    after a while yeah
  • Eyes See Wide North 2012/07/10 02:09:27
    Yes
    Eyes See Wide North
    +1
    Small things like this remove me from the game, the same way a mistake in a movie (you know) completely destroys my imagination.
  • Gwen 2012/07/06 08:49:43
    Yes
    Gwen
    i was playing(well watching my brother) Arkum Asylum the other day and the Joker kept saying the same thing over and over(it didn't help that my brother kept dying() and it bothered me so bad. that is why i play games that don't involve much talking.
  • cade oliver 2012/07/05 19:22:04
    Yes
    cade oliver
    What do you mean by "Barks?"
  • RawRsaurus 2012/07/04 23:37:04
  • Chris'Elia 2012/07/04 20:52:30
    Yes
    Chris'Elia
    Freaking Whiterun
  • frequent–antagonist 2012/07/04 15:12:57
    No
    frequent–antagonist
    +2
    Not really. I get used to them pretty fast most of the time. Except for that one guy ranting about Talos or something in Whiterun. I killed him.
  • Danny frequen... 2012/07/27 21:31:54
    Danny
    I shot him in the knee along with every other no essential NPC in whiterun :-P
  • Tylurr frequen... 2012/11/28 00:34:41
  • Solid Snake 2012/07/04 10:33:04
    No
    Solid Snake
    Not for the most part, especially since it'd be impossible not to have them.
  • JayRevolution 2012/07/03 22:25:08
    Yes
    JayRevolution
    Fable.

    That's all I'm going to say.
  • Rob Williams 2012/07/03 17:02:07
    No
    Rob Williams
    It's the best solution to the problem.
  • aperson 2012/07/02 05:43:43
    No
    aperson
    If i had not heard sanguine say "well if it isnt my favorite drinking buddy", and investigate who said it i would never have crashed the temple of Didelle in a drunken revelry or have gotten the sanguine rose staff. Also the barks can make stuff appear on your map.
  • exsecrare 2012/07/02 05:14:04
    No
    exsecrare
    You know, it's funny. I have put nearly 400 hours into Skyrim and have not once heard the "arrow in the knee" line.
  • Rob Wil... exsecrare 2012/07/03 17:00:51
    Rob Williams
    I'm amazed!
  • Jay exsecrare 2012/07/04 00:30:11
    Jay
    You don't talk to the guards enough.
  • exsecrare Jay 2012/07/05 01:38:29
    exsecrare
    That is true. I think the only time I've talked to a guard was to start the Dawnguard quest.
  • Jay exsecrare 2012/07/11 18:44:04
    Jay
    Yeah that is all they are good for. Starting new quests.
  • 001 exsecrare 2012/07/10 20:56:21
    001
    I think they fixed that, in the beginning I used to hear it way more often than I do lately. Or maybe it's just a coincidence.
  • MB8967 2012/07/01 21:07:57
    Yes
    MB8967
    I'm voting yes on this one, just because of the "Arrow to the knee."
  • Dyonus MB8967 2012/12/10 00:35:29 (edited)
    Dyonus
    You're not actually annoyed by it in game, you're annoyed by the meme that has come from it.

    Having played Skyrim, I honestly only remember hearing it a handful of times. Unless of course your game happens to play that one more than mine.
  • The Mosher 2012/07/01 15:21:55
    Yes
    The Mosher
    only in older games, I actually want to hear that quote in skyrim
  • brutusin~ Proud Apetheist 2012/07/01 14:28:37
    No
    brutusin~ Proud Apetheist
    I should say in some games it annoys me but other it doesn't.
  • susan BN-0 2012/07/01 13:53:08
    No
    susan BN-0
    Not really.
  • Cunning Stunts 2012/06/30 16:55:40
    No
    Cunning Stunts
    I don't play such frivolous genres.
  • Cunning... Cunning... 2012/06/30 16:57:30
    Cunning Stunts
    There is a bark in GTA Vice City that annoys me though, when you press attack too much the response lags and the cops and gang members etc often have a latent response.
  • vetogod 2012/06/30 08:09:13
    No
    vetogod
    how many people got an arrow to the kee ? cause damn in this game there must be a crap load of unlucky knees and well placed arrows lol
  • Alexander T Steward 2012/06/29 18:34:35
  • Lili13 2012/06/29 18:03:55
    Yes
    Lili13
    No! ahh i keep on clicking on the wrong thing
  • JackWilfred 2012/06/29 17:38:18
    Yes
    JackWilfred
    Although they're low on code space, hearing the same thing over and over again is annoying as hell, especially with the 'arrow to the knee' catchphrase. There surely must be a way to make the reactions more diverse?

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