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Raleirosen
Jun Member 2019

Raleirosen

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Mod Raven said:
With Endgame, we're planning to lock your canon as soon as you start the next quest. Meaning you cannot use that information to "get the best outcome" and will need to see how your choices play out. So I recommend playing your second canon now, if you intend to.
whoa there, I hope you advertise that from the damn rooftops when the next quest is released
Patrolling Lore FC almost makes you wish for a Great Revision.

07-Feb-2018 23:09:11

Cthris

Cthris

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Mod Raven said:

Choices should mean something, which means that they need consequence.

I"m sorry Mod Raven, but I have said a few (Many) words about this because I think there is something problematic here. Before I get to that part though, I should point out that your argument here has at least one hidden premiss. If your argument was expressed fully I think it would be something like this:
Premiss 1: Choices should mean something.
Premiss 2: Consequences make choices mean something.
Conclusion 1: Therefore, choices should have consequences.

Now, this isn't a valid argument because it doesn't exclude the possibility that something other than consequences can make choices mean something. Thus, the premises can be true while the conclusion is false. The textbook definition of an invalid argument; however, like any reasonable person should, I will grant you the benefit of the doubt and say what you really meant was the following argument:

P1: Choices should mean something.
P2: Consequences make choices mean something.
P3 If there is something that makes choices mean something it is a consequence.
C1: Therefore, choices should have consequences.

It is premiss 3 that I find is either unsound or its constitutes are too undefined to make any sort of truth apparent.

Consider the following example: I am a art collector and I am offered the opportunity to choose and display one of two famous paintings. For the sake of the example, let us say that one is a Van Gough and the other is a Monet. The seller is offering both paintings for the same price and if I change my mind I can swap the one for the other at any time. Thus, the practical consequences of buying either painting are the same. (Assuming there are no external factors like one of the paintings being stolen). Is my choice between the two painting's meaningless? No, because I would enjoy choosing one over the other.

(I shall continue on another post)

08-Feb-2018 00:43:24 - Last edited on 08-Feb-2018 03:00:30 by Cthris

Cthris

Cthris

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There are two ways to analyze this example. The first way is to explain that my choice is still meaningful, despite lack different consequences because some other entity gives my choice meaning. If I were to follow down this path of analysis I would probably end up with a Platonic conception of Virtue or Beauty involving itself within one of the paintings more than the other. I personally would want to avoid such an analysis, though it is vague enough that I cannot say definitively whether it is false or not.

The other form of analysis is to distinguish between two types of consequences: practical and aesthetic. Referring back to my example; the practical consequences are the costs of the paintings while the aesthetic consequences are the enjoyment I will get from choosing one painting over the other. It is not the practical consequences that give my choice between the two paintings meaning, but the aesthetic consequences. Under this analysis, the following argument is now sound.

P1: Choices should mean something.
P2: Consequences make choices mean something.
P3 If there is something that makes choices mean something it is a consequence.
C1: Therefore, choices should have consequences.

While it is sound it is still quite vague, so I would like to further develop it to account for practical and aesthetic consequences.

P1: Choices should mean something.
P2: All Consequences make choices mean something.
P3 If there is something that makes choices mean something it is either a practical consequence or an aesthetic consequence. (Philosopher’s of virtue or religious ethics may also include the possibility of virtue consequences)
P4 All practical consequences are Consequences
P5 All aethstetic consequences are Consequences
P6 If something is a consequence then it a aesthetic or practical consequence
C1: Therefore, choices should have consequences.

(Continued)

Edit: See my response to Hguoh for some technical points about practical and aesthetic consequences.

08-Feb-2018 00:43:35 - Last edited on 08-Feb-2018 03:03:30 by Cthris

Cthris

Cthris

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I apologize if what I am doing here seems like a long drawn out process to try and say something about a game, but I have read enough petty squabbles between scientists and philosophers to know the importance of eliminating vagueness and defining terms. In fact, it is almost painful for me to leave words like “meaningful,” “aesthetic” or “practical” undefined; however I do not have the time to be so rigorous.

My overall point here is that it is a mistake to think that only practical consequences, for example the unchangeable outcomes of choice in a quest, are the only things that make that choice meaningful. Other things, such as one’s enjoyment in choosing one thing or the other, or enjoyment in showing their faction allegiance also give choices meaning. I personally would enjoy being able to have fun role-playing my character as different factions or personalities with many different canon playthroughs of all the quests so that I can see the aesthetic consequences persist through each play through. When Skyrim came out I did the same thing, played as a dark elf, a rebel, legionar. Now obviously I had to restart my character to do that, but it was still enjoyable to do that because restarting my character was a feasible option for a casual player. Restarting your character in Runescape is not a feasible option.

Now, as you said, implementing the ability to reset playthroughs creates many complications and drains resources so I do not expect any accommodation for this view; I say it more because I saw an interesting philosophical mine to explore, so I hope you or anyone else that reads this enjoys as much as I enjoyed writing this. That being said, it might be worth implementing more aesthetic consequences to choices in the future. For example, the choice of eye colour in player creation would make plenty of people happy. (Not a suggestion to allow for eye colour changes, just an example of things other people want)

08-Feb-2018 01:21:50 - Last edited on 08-Feb-2018 01:27:24 by Cthris

Hguoh
Mar Gold Premier Club Member 2014

Hguoh

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Cthris, forgive me if I fail to see the point. As much as you elaborated on the premises, you never came to any conclusion that consequences for a choice can or should be something you can change.

All you did is define that some consequences can have an objective effect (ex: convincing someone to give you $50 or failing to do so), while some have an aesthetic effect (ex: painting a room red or blue). Beyond that, you only pointed out that starting a new character in Runescape to observe the various possible consequences is prohibitive for casual players due to the nature of the game.

As a final note, this is Runescape. Until quite recently in the game's history, choices in quests that actually make a difference post-quest have always been aesthetic (1 NPC doing a job or standing somewhere vs another, you stealing the Staff of Armadyl vs some NPC stealing it). The mods aren't exactly unaware of this concept.

08-Feb-2018 02:16:42

Cthris

Cthris

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Hguoh said:
Cthris, forgive me if I fail to see the point. As much as you elaborated on the premises, you never came to any conclusion that consequences for a choice can or should be something you can change.


Ah, the reason there is no conclusion that choices should be something you can change because I never intended to say that you should change choices. "The point" that you looking for is that I think it is problematic to view consequences as only the unchangeable outcomes of quests. Aesthetic consequences can still arise when outcomes are changeable, thus you can still have meaning even if the state of your outcomes is in flux.

Hguoh said:

As a final note, this is Runescape. Until quite recently in the game's history, choices in quests that actually make a difference post-quest have always been aesthetic (1 NPC doing a job or standing somewhere vs another, you stealing the Staff of Armadyl vs some NPC stealing it). The mods aren't exactly unaware of this concept.

These are not exactly what I would call aesthetic consequences. The vagueness here is due to a mistake of mine. My painting example did not account for the duration of time. I shall amend it. Any consequence that becomes 'fixed' and 'unchangeable' is what I would call a practical consequence because by eliminating your ability to access the other possibility you are having an effect on your practical activity. Hense, why it is a practical consequence. Aesthetic consequences as participants in time are consequences that can be changed, yet still have meaning. The best example I can give for an aesthetic consequence in Runescape is the consequences that arise from choosing Azzandra's gift over Juna's gift. You can always change your mind and claim Juna's gift instead. That doesn't make your choice between Azzandra's gift and Juna's meaningless.

I hope that made things more clear.

08-Feb-2018 02:56:20 - Last edited on 08-Feb-2018 03:04:31 by Cthris

Hguoh
Mar Gold Premier Club Member 2014

Hguoh

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In that case, the choice of gift is only the consequence of completing the quest and not the choices made in the quest.

A consequence, by definition, is the result or effect of an action or condition. As you can claim whatever gift you please regardless of your choice, the claiming of a gift cannot be a consequence of the choices made in the quest.

At best, it would be a consequence of completing the quest, but we would typically call something you receive from completing a quest regardless of the choices made within a quest reward.

Finally, any variable reward that you can change on the fly, like the gifts, is ill-suited for determining reactions in future content (creating inconsistencies should you change part way through something), and would cease to be and aesthetic consequence (by your definition) as it would now cause fixed/unchangeable impact on your game (or it would cause continuity issues every time you change your mind that grow greater the more that builds upon it).

09-Feb-2018 03:45:23

Cthris

Cthris

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Last time I admit your response was justified because I was far too vague, this time I think the errors are on your part. If you read more carefully, I think you would see why these comments are unjustified.

Hguoh said:
In that case, the choice of gift is only the consequence of completing the quest and not the choices made in the quest.

Yes, this is accurate. Hence...

Cthris said:
The best example I can give for an aesthetic consequence in Runescape is the consequences that arise from choosing Azzandra's gift over Juna's gift.


As you can see my example was not trying to show an example of an aesthetic choice in a quest. My example was just trying to give an in-game example of an aesthetic consequence that makes a choice meaningful.

Hguoh said:

Finally, any variable reward that you can change on the fly, like the gifts, is ill-suited for determining reactions in future content (creating inconsistencies should you change part way through something), and would cease to be and aesthetic consequence (by your definition) as it would now cause fixed/unchangeable impact on your game (or it would cause continuity issues every time you change your mind that grow greater the more that builds upon it).

Again, this is accurate, which is why I said it myself.
Cthris said:

Now, as you said, implementing the ability to reset playthroughs creates many complications and drains resources so I do not expect any accommodation for this view; I say it more because I saw an interesting philosophical mine to explore, so I hope you or anyone else that reads this enjoys as much as I enjoyed writing this.


To reiterate, my point is not to say you should be able to change outcomes of quests. My point is that conventional understandings of what makes something meaningful is problematic unless it is analyzed.

09-Feb-2018 16:18:28 - Last edited on 09-Feb-2018 16:30:43 by Cthris

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