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The Problem With NPC Happiness

Would you get rid of happiness-based price increases?


  • Total voters
    79

Flubman

Terrarian
All in all, I feel like this is like the bad torch luck situation all over again in that you're punished for not playing the way the game wants you to play. Though, to be fair, this mechanic is nowhere near as nonsensical because it has more justification than just feng shui and Red's pet peeve.
 

Mihn

Steampunker
I think pylons favoring small towns and your idea of rewarding large towns with decreased prices are at odds with each other unless you want players to choose between decreased prices and pylons (In which case, I think most players would choose pylons). I do agree with you saying that NPCs not tolerating being near a lot of other people is silly. I also agree that the negative reinforcement is bad in this case.
Yep, the intention was to make player choose which bonus they prefer. They both reward you for collecting the dozens of NPC in different ways.

I knew that when given the option pylons would be preferred. Having pylons around is already a giant perk against building big bases, since early-game, easy to set up teleportations is a huge boon considering to walk from point A to point B in preHM take days. Heck, even in Hardmode pylons are extremely good, I would say being able to teleport between the surface, the ocean and at least 3 underground spots without wiring is highly convenient.

Small towns don't need more bonuses. Pylons are already life-changing enough, but they had to give them price reduction AND penelizing big bases. Hence I think giving price reduction to big towns is a good idea: it still doesn't compare to pylon's usefulness throughout the whole game, but it's a little something which will add up if you spend a whole lot. And every people who regularly reforge their items knows how money-grubbing is that goblin. It's a choice of which kind of convenience do you prefer: spending less time moving or less time grinding. Both types of builder get rewarded in different ways.

There could be a more elegant solution but it's the first one I came up when I saw the pylon reveal.
 

Sordid

Terrarian
Yeah, but without positive happiness, you wouldn't get discounts.
You could still have those also based purely on the biome. If an NPC is in a biome they like, you get a discount and a pylon. Simple as that. Dis/like for other NPCs is for flavor dialogue only. That's the way I'd do it.
 

Banmei

Terrarian
Tons of people RP, roleplay, and have been doing so for quite a long time.

One upside? You can sell items for more gold then before. I hear where you are coming from though. An option to enable/disable the whole feature isn't a bad idea. I'd say it should include both happiness and pylons.
 

Greybrynn

The Destroyer
Here's an even better idea: remove NPC happiness altogether.

NPCs have a preferred biome which, if they are placed within it, they will sell that biome's Pylon. A Pylon requires two nearby NPCs to activate.

The end.
A pylon requires two happy NPCs to work
 

Nicol Bolas

Terrarian
Not so sure I understand the problem. It seems as though people like the Pylons, as do I. Well, if you want to use the Pylons you need to have a minimum of 2 per Pylon. Personally, I plan on utilizing all Pylons. It's really easy, even early on, to match 2 separate pairs of NPCs that will actually give you a price bonus, not penalty, and sell you a Pylon. So you get Pylons plus get insta-teleporting to shopkeeper sellers as if you had the discount card acc early on.

I too like to keep them bundled up in one location usually underground because it's safest for them. I don't mind giving up a few but in return save myself a ton of trekking back and forth to some long, long journeys. I could see if you don't like Pylons and want to keep them all in one spot. That would be a disadvantage. But if you're going to use Pylons you're going to have to separate some anyways so I don't get ?
The issue is arrangement.

Everyone has their preferred NPCs, and sometimes, that's based on a particular build. If you're doing a ranged build, then the Wizard probably isn't important to you, while the Arms Dealer is. So sending the Wizard out to wherever just to switch on a Pylon, while the Arms Dealer is always in your base would be an ideal arrangement.

But in the game as it currently stans, I can't do that. If I'm playing a ranged build, the Arms Dealer has to go into the Desert to get his best discounts. So either I build my base there, or I have to use a Pylon every time I need to buy bullets or whatever, just because of an arbitrary rule.

I no longer have a choice: if I want the best prices, I have to deal with this annoyance. And yes, Pylon travel is fairly quick, but it's still longer than just walking over to him.

Not only that, as I get further into the game, I'm basically going to have to build an NPC ghetto anyway. There are too many NPCs for a proper arrangement, so I'll have to build a place for all of the NPCs that both I find useless and none of the NPCs that I find useful like. The only difference is that this ghetto is going to have to be built far, far away from my main base, rather than just near everybody else.

A pylon requires two happy NPCs to work
No, it does not. It merely requires two NPCs.
 

Greybrynn

The Destroyer
Yep sorry, well I wish it were like that though, cause you have to have 2 or 3 happy NPCs to get the pylon, it would make sense though
 

Banmei

Terrarian
The issue is arrangement.

Everyone has their preferred NPCs, and sometimes, that's based on a particular build. If you're doing a ranged build, then the Wizard probably isn't important to you, while the Arms Dealer is. So sending the Wizard out to wherever just to switch on a Pylon, while the Arms Dealer is always in your base would be an ideal arrangement.

But in the game as it currently stans, I can't do that. If I'm playing a ranged build, the Arms Dealer has to go into the Desert to get his best discounts. So either I build my base there, or I have to use a Pylon every time I need to buy bullets or whatever, just because of an arbitrary rule.

I no longer have a choice: if I want the best prices, I have to deal with this annoyance. And yes, Pylon travel is fairly quick, but it's still longer than just walking over to him.

Not only that, as I get further into the game, I'm basically going to have to build an NPC ghetto anyway. There are too many NPCs for a proper arrangement, so I'll have to build a place for all of the NPCs that both I find useless and none of the NPCs that I find useful like. The only difference is that this ghetto is going to have to be built far, far away from my main base, rather than just near everybody else.



No, it does not. It merely requires two NPCs.

The Biome part I see as yes, each one has their own preference and you can't change that. The other you mention I think can be resolved without too much difficulty. The dislike system is based off of distance tiles so you could still keep some of your liked npcs in/near your base and all the rest you don't care about nearby. I think the limit is 40 tiles or so which isn't bad.

Another work-around for the Desert deal would be to create your own biome. It's really easy to make any kind of biome anywhere. It doesn't take much time and doesn't take that many blocks. Just some thoughts.
 

Nicol Bolas

Terrarian
I think the limit is 40 tiles or so which isn't bad.
The limit is 25 tiles for near, and 120 for far. The near distance applies unhappiness penalties if too many violate it, while the far distance switches off a 90% happiness bonus for even mildly dense arrangements.

Another work-around for the Desert deal would be to create your own biome. It's really easy to make any kind of biome anywhere. It doesn't take much time and doesn't take that many blocks. Just some thoughts.
According to the Wiki, the requirements for many biomes have changed in 1.4. Apparently, it now requires 1500 blocks to make an Ice or Desert biome. I wouldn't call moving 1500 blocks "easy".
 

Banmei

Terrarian
The limit is 25 tiles for near, and 120 for far. The near distance applies unhappiness penalties if too many violate it, while the far distance switches off a 90% happiness bonus for even mildly dense arrangements.



According to the Wiki, the requirements for many biomes have changed in 1.4. Apparently, it now requires 1500 blocks to make an Ice or Desert biome. I wouldn't call moving 1500 blocks "easy".
Oh. I looked at that and so they did change the desert. So much for that idea. I was not aware of this new change.Previously you didn't need that much at all. I could make mini biomes with less than 100 blocks.
 

lilithyawe

Terrarian
Well. They don't force anyone to use Pylons as well as having your town spread in the world. Just play how you were playing before 14.0.1 and gather everyone in boxes. They will have higher prices but nothing that you "experience player" can't handle.

There are rules
  • House the NPC in a Liked biome
  • House the NPC within 25 tiles of a Loved or Liked NPC
  • House no more than one other NPC within 25 tiles
  • House no more than three other NPCs within 120 tiles

I have 4 characters in the forest working fine with the prices normally and their happiness being fine as well. Just (Ab) using these rules above.

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5
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7



I also have 3 pylons working fine


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1
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2
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3


Be Creative...
 

Fortis

Terrarian
This feels like the torch luck situation all over again. It's arbitrary and tacked on all over another one of the dev's pet peeves. It's a sandbox game, people should be able to build and play it how they want, without being told 'no that's wrong' by a developer who will never even see their world, let alone play on it. Lots of people prefer having the NPCs in a centralized area. Maybe they like building big, elaborate cities. Maybe they just like having all the NPCs in quick, easy access. Maybe they just don't like the building aspect of the game and want to focus on the exploration and combat. Each of those reasons is just as valid as preferring many smaller scattered settlements, and shouldn't be arbitrarily punished by nonsensical price increases. Reason aside, it makes the NPCs feel like ingrates. Even if it just a shack, it's a solid four walls against the countless zombie hordes that appear every night. Not to mention the player rescues several of them from certain death in giant spider lairs or the depths of the dungeon or from literal damnation in hell.

Punishment aside, the happiness system feels incredibly bare bones too. Lazy really. It doesn't take into account any efforts made to make their homes look pretty, or thematically appropriate. The dryad is just as happy in a lifeless crude stone hut as she is in an elaborate living tree room with lots of flowers and life, as long as she is isolated and alone in the jungle. I personally enjoy making houses themed to each of the NPCs in a big city all together. It doesn't make sense that the NPCs wouldn't appreciate the effort went into making them a good home that would be to their liking. Ideally, a happiness situation should take into account what blocks and walls are used to make their home and what kind of furniture and decorations are used to furnish it, and reward players for taking the NPCs preferences into account with increased happiness and better prices. But players shouldn't be penalized for using the wrong materials, or even just making do with a wood NPC barracks, because some players might not like the building aspect. And that's fine too.

In short, reward players for effort put into making towns, but don't penalize them for enjoying the game a different way. The pylons are enough of an incentive to build scattered, smaller towns. There's no need for that big price increase. And players should be rewarded too for making individualized homes too. Players shouldn't be punished for not wanting to focus on that particular aspect of the game. I hope the devs correct this mistake. But if they don't, a mod certainly will in time, and we can remove Redigit's 'Stop having fun wrong' arbitrary penalty.

P.S. Yes, a 150% price is significant. I have never used money farms, all my money come from exploration and adventuring. It always felt tight before this stupid price increase, and this happiness system is just going to make that worse. It's a good way to make people start making money farms.
 

Tripoli

Terrarian
without being told 'no that's wrong' by a developer who will never even see their world, let alone play on it
The name of the game is plural for "terrarium". It also allows you to upload your world to cloud server. Hmmm...

Ideally, a happiness situation should take into account what blocks and walls are used to make their home and what kind of furniture and decorations are used to furnish it
Consider that it actually goes even further away from sandbox artistic freedom and roleplay.
 

Sordid

Terrarian
the happiness system feels incredibly bare bones too. Lazy really. It doesn't take into account any efforts made to make their homes look pretty, or thematically appropriate
Yeah, that bothers me a lot more than any of the other stuff. A little incentive to build something nicer than a dirt box would be nice.
 

Fortis

Terrarian
The name of the game is plural for "terrarium". It also allows you to upload your world to cloud server. Hmmm...


Consider that it actually goes even further away from sandbox artistic freedom and roleplay.
What is your point? I play single player, or small servers with my friends. I don't upload my worlds to the cloud server. And even if I did, there's millions of people playing Terraria and creating worlds. Even if Redigit had in mind to browse player worlds on the cloud, odds are infinitesimally small he'd happen upon mine.

And for the artistic freedom and roleplay, you're missing my point. I'm proposing rewarding the player for taking the NPCs preferences into account, but one wouldn't be penalized for not doing so, so you can build whatever the hell you want without the game punishing you. That is in contrast to Terraria as is, where the wrong design choices nets you a stiff penalty in the form of increased prices from NPCs.
 

ledocteur7

Terrarian
Yep, It's just bad, first it's totally limit the building possibilities Terraria is a sandbox game, anyone should be able to plays like he want also, the pylons is great but because of this freaking 2 npc needed you are really limited in here to place it, you can't place it in corruption/crimson, and you have to place it in a biome that 2 npc like it's dumb. what I think can be better is remove this dumb happiness system (at least the penalty) (they can leave the dialogue) and make the pylons a endgame thing by make it use luminite and some other endgame thing. I'm not making dirt box I like to use a giant three for a main base (with glass dome on the branches) and the floating island with house for extra npc but limiting the builder possibilities is just dumb.
 

Flubman

Terrarian
This feels like the torch luck situation all over again. It's arbitrary and tacked on all over another one of the dev's pet peeves. It's a sandbox game, people should be able to build and play it how they want, without being told 'no that's wrong' by a developer who will never even see their world, let alone play on it. Lots of people prefer having the NPCs in a centralized area. Maybe they like building big, elaborate cities. Maybe they just like having all the NPCs in quick, easy access. Maybe they just don't like the building aspect of the game and want to focus on the exploration and combat. Each of those reasons is just as valid as preferring many smaller scattered settlements, and shouldn't be arbitrarily punished by nonsensical price increases. Reason aside, it makes the NPCs feel like ingrates. Even if it just a shack, it's a solid four walls against the countless zombie hordes that appear every night. Not to mention the player rescues several of them from certain death in giant spider lairs or the depths of the dungeon or from literal damnation in hell.

Punishment aside, the happiness system feels incredibly bare bones too. Lazy really. It doesn't take into account any efforts made to make their homes look pretty, or thematically appropriate. The dryad is just as happy in a lifeless crude stone hut as she is in an elaborate living tree room with lots of flowers and life, as long as she is isolated and alone in the jungle. I personally enjoy making houses themed to each of the NPCs in a big city all together. It doesn't make sense that the NPCs wouldn't appreciate the effort went into making them a good home that would be to their liking. Ideally, a happiness situation should take into account what blocks and walls are used to make their home and what kind of furniture and decorations are used to furnish it, and reward players for taking the NPCs preferences into account with increased happiness and better prices. But players shouldn't be penalized for using the wrong materials, or even just making do with a wood NPC barracks, because some players might not like the building aspect. And that's fine too.

In short, reward players for effort put into making towns, but don't penalize them for enjoying the game a different way. The pylons are enough of an incentive to build scattered, smaller towns. There's no need for that big price increase. And players should be rewarded too for making individualized homes too. Players shouldn't be punished for not wanting to focus on that particular aspect of the game. I hope the devs correct this mistake. But if they don't, a mod certainly will in time, and we can remove Redigit's 'Stop having fun wrong' arbitrary penalty.

P.S. Yes, a 150% price is significant. I have never used money farms, all my money come from exploration and adventuring. It always felt tight before this stupid price increase, and this happiness system is just going to make that worse. It's a good way to make people start making money farms.
To be fair, you'd have to be pretty negligent to get 150% prices. Also, it does make sense that NPCs wouldn't be as nice to you if you gave them living conditions they don't like. Again, the problem is that it goes against the game's sandbox element by punishing you if you don't play a certain way.
 

JohannSimm

The Destroyer
I find it odd that the response in late April to the NPC happiness changes to seemed so overwhelmingly positive, and now with the whole torch luck debacle people are talking about NPC happiness as if it were some newly-uncovered thing that is deserving of further outrage, and further evidence of the team's "mistakes". (Although maybe there was prior protest and I just didn't see it.)

This may be pedantic, but technically torch luck was NPC happiness all over again (but worse). We can't say these changes weren't publicly known for weeks in advance.

That said, I do believe that people should be able to play the game the way they want, and shouldn't be shoehorned into a specific playstyle, so maybe if there's enough demand they'll remove negative price adjustments or add an option to disable it. Gigantic strongholds should be a valid option!
 
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