Better Non-Playable Characters

I know this has been bitched about for eons of time, and I would first like to thank for the noticeable improvements in the dialogue window and through the interaction query.

But the truth is, most of us still want a friend in the apocalypse, for RNG is a bitch.

What I would love to see in the game are relationships between the player and his followers.
Come on, if you had enough time to write 9001 survivor notes, I’m sure one of you can think up cool dialogue.

All of you probably played skyrim, so here’s a good analogy - skyrim stock NPCs suck (LYDIA), but ones added by mods (VILJA), with some extra dialogue options now and then, besides the simple commands, would be mighty awesome.
The player really needs to be given incentive to keep the ally alive, because right now I’m not getting attached to either my dog or my teammate.

Possible ideas:
-Equiping wEpon and armor. (don’t know if this actually got implemented yet)
-Encumberance and Warmth! One has to earn the NPC by micromanaging and making sure he/she is healthy.
-Commenting on current situation
-Commenting on past encounters
-Commenting on player
-Interaction with others
-Better situational awareness <-- Should probably be higher.

Also another question - you trade an NPC and it has 7k $$$ with him. Yet you receive no money bundle, no cash card. what is this.
And the trading should be disabled for NPCs that are loyal - I can’t tell an NPC to use a bandage without trading it to him. No money.

I would love to hear what you guys have planned for this part of the game.
Also, I actually think you added a lot of cool shit over a single month. Especially zoom - it is awesome.

While suggesting things npc related, I would like to see npc functions .json’ed, that way , we can add npc support to mod.

NPCs will equip a good melee weapon if they have one. In experimentals, there is also a give item command, which allows player to customize NPC’s equipment a bit better.

Some of what you suggest won’t work, as this is a very open game that some play for hundreds of hours, and for obvious reasons NPCs that try to take up a lot of “screen time” by interacting with the player a lot will get repetitive and boring. If you want to make NPCs interesting, it’d be better to do something like dwarf fortress, where you give a lot of detail to each character’s background, preferences, etc.

We should have a way to easily configure the npcs chats and stuff, to make a lot of npcs, and npc packs, and then be able to just make numbers of interesting ones!

You can already make npcs, make them spawn, edit their load out and dialogue but can’t make them say anything different,make them follow you or give you missions.

Just a persuasion check to have the npc go to a specific spot, strip down and drop everything, then use its judgement vrs its skills and stats to choose the best armour and weapons and meds and ammo from that tile and surrounding tiles and pick up/wear them would be great. That way I can just tell my recruit “there’s my massive pile of junk. go to town.”

Might also be nice to be able to give them books if they’re on guard mode in a car with light so they can improve their skills gradually while you run off and derp into the night.

Could be cool to have persuasion checks to let you use mutagens/cbms on them too, if your skill is good enough, or the other way around if their skills are better. Some persuasion checks probably harder than others.

Drink from clean water faucets and eat from minifridges, complain about lack of said things, pointless flavour stuff.

Making a good armor set isn’t easy for players, making selecting it automatic is far harder than describing it to a person.
They can already select a good weapon, but that’s only because weapons are easy to rate and you can only use one at a time. You need a complete set of armor and value of an armor piece changes depending on what you have on.

Or just, for each slot, iterate taking and wearing the most coverage and protection for the least encumbrance until you hit 30 or above encumbrance, weighting towards armours with 30 or less encumbrance but at least 10 protection or more unless there’s nothing better available.

Then you get no storage.
And no way to optimally use multi-slot items, like trenchcoats, survivor suits and masks.
And the set is adjusted very badly when it comes to layering penalty.
And no adjustment for melee (low encumbrance on torso) vs. ranged (low encumbrance on arms).

I even started writing a function that would do what you described, but stripped it down to a simple encumbrance check and disabled its automatic use. For a while NPCs will only ever equip stuff the player tells them to.
A “drop all stuff” command will probably exist. I want to remake NPCs into more minion-like entities, because their free will only gets them murdered by player leading them into zeds or traps.

I’d like to see the ‘static NPC’ world gen option generate NPCs in houses, or roving. But only once per the area. I’d like to run into dudes hiding in houses or bandits without having dynamic spawn on, as having 10 hostile NPCs generate on top of me/raid my house/burn said house down trying to kill a squirrel is quite annoying.

I could probably write up a sea of speech for scads of static NPCs, with branching dialog trees and such.

If that’s a thing people want.

That’d be so great actually. You know how many stories we could add, with just a few, scattered NPCs?

Hiding bandits in the forest, hiding survivors in houses, dying survivors in caves, drugaddicts, lunatics in sewers, etc.
If we could make them spawn in groups, even better: scared families hiding in the basements with nailboards and knives, groups of survivors chatting and playing music with a radio, a group of scientists hiding, enclosed, in a lab’s room, etc

We could make that npcs follow other npcs and if we get that npc to follow us then they indirectly follow us as well.