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The Outer Worlds Documentary by Noclip - Part Three: Building Worlds & Designing Quests

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The Outer Worlds Documentary by Noclip - Part Three: Building Worlds & Designing Quests

Development Info - posted by Infinitron on Thu 16 April 2020, 20:07:55

Tags: Brian Heins; Daniel Alpert; Megan Starks; Nitai Poddar; Obsidian Entertainment; Paul Kirsch; The Outer Worlds; Tim Cain

The latest episode of Noclip's The Outer Worlds documentary is made up of two parts. The first half is an overview of the game's first few areas, starting from an introduction to Emerald Vale by Nitai Poddar and continuing with a discussion of Groundbreaker and Roseway with Brian Heins and others. That leads into the second half which is about quest design, beginning with the Passage to Everywhere quest on Groundbreaker, where the player has to decide how he's going to acquire a navkey in order to proceed further. Apparently the sheer number of paths available here was the source of a number of bugs. It turns out that the navkey was originally intended to have been sold by Lilya Hagen from Sublight, but Obsidian decided to create the Gladys Culkelly character so that players wouldn't be forced to work with a criminal faction. The episode continues with a look at the C&P Factory quest on Monarch with Megan Starks, and concludes with a few words from Brian about the Tucker Needham and Captain Irion sidequests (which he seems to have brought up in the context of talking about the game's amusing voice acting).

All that stuff is nice, but once again the most interesting part of this episode relates to cut content. Brian Heins reveals that Groundbreaker used to be made up of three separate load zones. Unlike the New Vegas Strip a decade ago, the team was able to merge them into a single area. Unfortunately, that meant the station's bridge had to be cut in order to avoid exceeding console memory limitations, with some of its content relocated to the central promenade. They also had to reduce the number of roaming NPCs on the station and cull them when the player entered side locations. It's disheartening to learn that multiplatform RPGs still suffer from these sorts of issues.

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