I’m a Floyd fan. I know many people found him annoying, but I thought he was adorable and provided some needed comic relief. I thought all his random little comments and actions were funny. He was a lot like a curious little kid tagging along for the adventure. I did not get to Floyd’s death (for which I am kind of happy after hearing about how he dies), but I played for a long enough time to familiarize myself with and come to love Floyd. Maybe love is a bit strong, but I definitely liked him.
Even though I liked him, I did do something I am not proud of: I kicked Floyd. After Dr. Delwiche said that we could do so, I became curious. I actually tried to hug him first, but for some strange reason, Planetfall does not recognize the word “hug.” The next logical move was to kick him, of course. I immediately felt horrible after Floyd reacted to my kick, so, even though I knew Planetfall would not recognize it, I apologized to Floyd, if only to assuage some of my guilt. He didn’t react. The only thing I could do was tell Floyd to follow me even though he would have anyway. I wanted him to feel as though I was including him. Yes, I realize Floyd is not real and he doesn’t have feelings. What can I say, I get very involved. I suppose that is a testament to Meretzky’s success. He explains that he wanted him to be cute, endearing, and have emotional resonance with the player—check, check, and check.
Even though Floyd is not necessary for the advancement of the game (at least until he dies, I guess) he definitely provides relief from the game, which might otherwise become a little boring. I think Floyd is a successful NPC; I can’t say the same for the others. I agree with other people in the class that said that the other NPCs seemed kin of useless and annoying. If I were creating a game, I would make the NPCs more useful to the game, instead of just filler. They could provide clues to advance in the game. Speaking of which, I’m with others who relied on the walk-through for the entire game, and still kept dying (either from lack of food or sleep). I did not like that about the game, because it takes the fun out of it for those who don’t want to spend lots of time figuring out how to make it alone. To return to my earlier point, I would include clues throughout the game to help the player along, instead of having so much rely on trial and error. I want to be able to think about it and work it out in my head instead of just guessing, which is what I would have done without the walk-through.