If you approach the wrong tent and tell them "caterpillar", and this is really easy to do since they're not labelled, something interesting happens.
We've seen what happens if we tell it to the Atchisons, so let's try the others. First the Santa Fe clan:
|That corpse you planted last year in your garden,|
|Has it begun to sprout?|
|Will it bloom this year?|
|Or has the sudden frost disturbed it's bed?|
|A woman drew her long black hair out tight|
|And fiddled whisper music on those strings|
|And bats with baby faces in the violet light|
|Whistled and beat their wings|
I've also prepared another example of this in Highpool. You might recall that I mentioned that most of the actions you can take there involve destroying people's lives. So, we head into Highpool, and discover from a young boy, Bobby, that his dog got "sick", and he hid it in a cave to keep it safe.
Let's check that out, I'm sure it can't end in tragedy. We're down in the cave now, when suddenly...
|My friend, blood shaking my heart|
|The awful daring of a moment's surrender|
|Which an age of prudence can never retract|
Another thing that can be done in Highpool is to wander around on the slippery rocks in the creek. Do it enough, and sooner or later you'll fall over, prompting laughter from the children in town. Doesn't that just make your blood boil? So teach them a lesson!
|By this, and this only, we have existed|
|Which is not to be found in our obituaries|
|Or in memories draped by the beneficent spider|
|Or under seals broken by the lean solicitor|
|In our empty rooms|
Now, I read something interesting a few years back which I've been unable to find again. It was one of the lead guys who worked on the game writing in to a site which detailed all the atrocities varied players had committed in the game. He was shocked, and said something like "I thought Rangers were supposed to be the good guys!"
Now, I'm certainly not criticising for the content of the game in the slightest. I always try to do the right thing in games, though this one does force a bit of petty theft to some degree. So this is the first time in many, many years that I've seen this side of the game, despite playing it at least once every couple of years. However, you have to realise that if you allow the players to commit atrocities, and even reward them with loot, experience, and interesting flavour text, naturally most of them are going to want to do these things.
I have no problem with games that allow sociopathic actions, and I have no problem with gamers who want to do these things in the game, even though it doesn't appeal to me, as long as that's where it stays. Of course, it does, because games don't make psychopaths, genes and upbringing do. But it seems to be a bit disingenuous to allow terrible things with little or no consequence, and then throw your hands up in shock when people go Lord of the Flies.
Of course, the fellow may have been tongue in cheek when he said it. In which case, carry on Mr. Game Designer. Though I know I don't have many readers, it'd be great to hear what people think about this topic. So if you're going to comment on any post, make it this one.