->''"Talk to everyone. Talk is cheap. You don't talk, you don't learn."''
-->-- ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind''

%% One quote is sufficient. Please place additional entries on the quotes tab.

Universal generic gaming advice to when you're stuck in a game and don't know where to go. Magazine/NintendoPower gave this particular advice the top position on a list of "top video game tips".

90% of the time, you're thinking too much and getting too far ahead, and then promptly dying from high level monsters. 95% of the time [[WelcomeToCorneria all people want to tell you]] is "Welcome to ______!" over and over. This is frustrating if you've saved at an odd time and are talking to people in an [[NowWhereWasIGoingAgain effort to remember where you were supposed to go]].

Occasionally, just ''speaking'' can cause unseen consequences, like a cutscene or a trigger to a later event. In fact, you'd better have talked to that goose salesman at the very beginning of the game if you ever want Sir Bob to get the InfinityPlusOneSword twelve hours in later. This can reach truly absurd levels, where you can SEE the lever, you KNOW you have to pull the lever, but [[OnlyIdiotsMayPass you simply can't do so]] unless you talk to some random NPC who suggests pulling it.

Failure to ''follow'' this advice, particularly in older Japanese-made games, can often lead to a GuideDangIt scenario. More than one game has a seemingly-obtuse puzzle that is fairly easily solved if you've collected enough information from someone nearby. Then there are games that [[PlayingWithATrope complicate this further]] where talking to a certain random someone can actually cause an optional item to become [[PermanentlyMissableContent unobtainable]] if you didn't get the item first, or require you to talk to certain [=NPCs=] ''twice'' to get them to do something helpful.

See also TryEverything.


[[folder:Action Adventure]]
* ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda''
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'' also does this in Hyrule town square.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaALinkToThePast'': It's kind of a prerequisite. The townspeople suggest some good stuff and give hints. Well...[[HeroWithBadPublicity those that don't call the guards on you.]]
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOracleGames'': At the very beginning of both games, the [[DistressedDamsel respective oracle]] is met somewhere in [[GhibliHills the woods]] along with some company (Nayru singing to WoodlandCreatures, and Din dancing with gipsies). In order to proceed, you need to have talked to each NPC on the screen once before talking to a particular NPC will trigger the next event.
* In ''VideoGame/SonicUnleashed'' you get an achievement/trophy for talking to every NPC in the game.
* ''VideoGame/StarControlII'': Talking to everyone repeatedly is ''extremely'' important. Since the star map is huge, you need hints from the dialogue to have any idea where to go next. Some of these can be very obscure and easy to miss, and you'd better take notes on paper, because you cannot review past conversations. Thankfully, the game has truly excellent writing, so this is not boring, though talking to hostile alien races can get tricky.
* ''VideoGame/StarTropics'' enforces this trope.
** If you do not talk to everyone in Miracola, the game will not allow you to advance in the plot.
** In Bellcola, the game won't let you complete the puzzle to reach the chapter's dungeon without first talking to the parrot, even if [[YouShouldntKnowThisAlready you already know the solution to the puzzle from a strategy guide or previous playthrough]].
** LetsPlay/HCBailly even refers to this trope as "Star Tropics Syndrome".

[[folder:Adventure Game]]
* Every time you meet a new character in ''VideoGame/AnotherCode'', you'll have to hear all the conversation options to progress the plot.
* Since ''VideoGame/HotelDuskRoom215'' and ''VideoGame/LastWindow'' are all about learning about the characters and their plots, this makes sense. However, there is an instance or two where you'll want to not say something to them, lest you find yourself with an early Game Over.
* In the PC game ''VideoGame/SherlockHolmesSecretOfTheSilverEarring'', the trope is present in the extreme -- not only must you speak with every NPC you find, you absolutely must pursue every single possible line of dialogue or the game will not move forward.
** A DOS FullMotionVideo ''Franchise/SherlockHolmes'' game averts it, however. You receive a better final score for talking to as few people as you possibly can in order to solve a case.
* The ''VideoGame/LittleBigAdventure'' games make use of this, since friendly [=NPC=]s can provide useful info, including tips on [[MediumAwareness what Twinsen is capable of doing as a]] PlayerCharacter. When you have a specific objective, Twinsen will usually ask about it, and if you're talking to the right person, chances are you'll be given some clues -- or at least a reminder of [[NowWhereWasIGoingAgain what you were going to do when you left the game the last time several weeks ago]].
* ''VideoGame/GrimFandango'' relies so much on collecting information that failure to follow this advice on the first playthrough (particularly during Year 2, as Rubacava has quite a few characters you can interact with) will at worst get you stuck, and at best make you scratch your head at puzzles that would otherwise make perfect sense -- a lot of crucial conversations are ''completely optional'', and that only makes things worse. There's a reason this game has a dialogue transcript option on the main menu. Below are some of the crueler examples.
** At the end of Year 2, you have to get Glottis kicked out of the cat race track by getting the police chief to raid your own cafe/casino. How are you supposed to arrive at this conclusion? Why, by discussing the problem with the owner of the kitties, Maximino, who is in his office, and who specifically tells you that Glottis has credit as long as you're in business... what do you mean you've never noticed that door before?
** Another conversation, triggered by opening a cabinet in Toto Santos's scrimshaw parlor, reveals that Toto uses liquid nitrogen as a painkiller. Miss it, and you'll tear out your hair upon encountering [[MoonLogicPuzzle an already illogical puzzle]] where you have to freeze some gelatin[[note]]technically, your best friend's puke[[/note]]. Also, a puzzle near the end of the game where [[spoiler:Manny uses the remains of the liquid to get rid of the sproutella flower in his chest]] makes a lot more sense if you have heard this dialogue.
** Then there's a scene in the Year 4 where the game, evidently, expects you to ''listen to a character's insane ramblings long enough to hear a clue'' (along with some good bit of foreshadowing).
** And, of course, you need to get a certain character to read ''all'' of her poetry in Year 2, if you want to know just why exactly the game is titled ''Grim Fandango''...
* The ''VideoGame/BrokenSword'' games often fall into this, with the additional complication that you may have to talk to everyone [[CombinatorialExplosion about each and every item in your inventory]] before you find the relevant dialogue tree.
* ''HeroinesQuest'' can easily mess you up on a specific sidequest if you do this: the tutorial specifically tells you that conversation options that are not greyed out have not been tried, telling you to talk to everyone about everything in order to get the most information. However, at one point in a sidequest, the conversation option that is not greyed out is essentially you ''declining'' to complete the quest, which you can easily click on if you're just going through all the conversation options. While it doesn't make the game Unwinnable, it does keep you from getting that LastLousyPoint.

* In the ''Franchise/CarmenSandiego'' games it's talk to the ''right'' everybody. At each location on the trail of the thief there's somebody with a clue to the thief's next destination, and somebody with a clue to the thief's identity. Miss the first kind and you'll lose the trail; miss the second kind and you won't be able to get a warrant for their arrest. But misinterpret a clue, and you'll waste your time traveling to a location where nobody you talk to knows anything at all.
** Aversion: One ''Series/WhereInTheWorldIsCarmenSandiego'' actually penalizes you for it as the game goes on: your translator power is limited and you make more and more stops each game. By the final location, you're expected to figure out the next location just from talking to one person, by which point you're supposed to be smart enough to figure out the one clue.

[[folder:Platform Gmae]]
* ''VideoGame/RabiRibi'' not only averts this trope by having [=NPCs=] without names give you absolutely nothing of benefit (at best they offer a little exposition and worldbuilding, at worst they complain about the place they're in or accuse you of wasting time hunting for bunnies), there's even an achievement for talking to enough unnecessary [=NPCs=]. The only [=NPCs=] who will give you anything are the various town members you recruit, who give you buffs and items in exchange for EN, Rumi whose interaction is required to advance the game, and Miriam who is required to advance the game in an early part. In fact, it's possible to complete the main game by only using the Talk action on the latter two.
--> '''NPC on Rabi Rabi Beach:''' [[LampshadeHanging You don't have to talk to everyone here. Why do you feel like you need to?]]

[[folder:Role Playing Game]]
* Not always necessary for plot advancement, but the requirements to unlock some of the hidden scenes, artes, and weapons in the VideoGame/TalesSeries can be [[GuideDangIt downright absurd]]. Didn't talk to that one nondescript NPC before you spent a night in the inn? Sorry, an entire side-quest chain is now completely unfinishable. (Even worse, you may not realize this until you've gone several hours into it.) Some of the games provide incentive to talk to [=NPC=]s, particularly VideoGame/TalesOfGraces, where Pascal can get three titles based on the number of [=NPC=]s you've talked to.
* In ''VideoGame/StarOceanTheSecondStory'', a series of chats will inadvertently remove a power limiter on a boss, making him absurdly more powerful.
** There's a small time-frame in which you're supposed to backtrack to a previous continent so that you can recruit not one, but two characters. Fail to do so and you'll never even know they existed, except that you keep finding these weapon pieces that apparently attach to a laser rifle...
* Early iterations of the ''VideoGame/{{Ultima}}'' series of {{RPG}}s.
* ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'': Just about every game has some sort of character you speak to in order to get special items.
** During the first visit to Mysidia in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV'', talking to anyone is a gamble because the entire town hates the main character. The bartender poisons you, a random citizen turns you into a frog, and a dancer transforms the entire party into pigs. After a key event, most of the townsfolk stop doing this... except for the dancer.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'': Even animals, sometimes. A dialog tree conversation with a Chocobo, for example, can yield potions if done correctly. In, you can also engage in card games by finding out-of-the-way characters and talking to them.
** In the final dungeon of ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIX'', you can talk to ''thin air'' in certain spots to reveal "spirits" to play Tetra Master with.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' has one during the party's attempt to avoid Shinra's ID check on the train. You only have about 45 seconds to get to the end of the train so the party can jump off safely. However, talking to the homeless NPC lying on the seats during this event (when he had nothing interesting to say the first time you meet him) nets you a good item. Many other [=NPC=]s follow suit.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' - because Yuna is on a quest to save Spira from Sin, it's not unusual for random [=NPCs=] to provide items upon being talked to the first time. They can generally be talked to up to three additional times for more dialogue. In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX2'', Yuna has become known as the High Summoner who brought the Eternal Calm, but [=NPCs=] in this game generally aren't quite so ready to cough up items. Additionally, after the player makes the decision whether to give the Awesome Sphere to either the Youth League or New Yevon, members of the group that they ''didn't'' give it to can sometimes be downright hostile, or even engage the party in battle.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII'' is possibly the first FF game where a giant spreading megalopolis isn't seemingly populated by just 20 people, but instead...maybe a few hundred. That's not many when compared to real life, and the idea is that you're only seeing a fragment of the population at any given time, but towns and cities seem much more populated than other entries in the FF series. In anticipation of players trying to talk to everyone, only certain people in towns or cities will talk to you- the other people are just fluff to make the area look more populated. This helps calm the player so they don't have to worry about talking to ''every'' single person, just the green blips on the map, and it saved the developer a lot of time and space on the disc. It also means that most of the conversations will actually have a point.
** In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIIRevenantWings'', the practice of talking to everyone is lampshaded by Ba'Gamnan. The game is more akin to an RTS than an RPG.
--->'''Ba'Gamnan''': Where did you pick up the habit of talking to everyone you see? Could be bad for your health, aye.
* In ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII'', Goofy explicitly identifies this as "Adventuring Rule #17: Collect information!"
* ''VideoGame/{{Mother}}'':
** In ''VideoGame/{{Mother 1}}'', speaking to certain [=NPC=]s in the perpetually wintery town of Snowman will cause them to sneeze on you, giving you their cold. A status effect similar to poison, this will gradually deplete your HP.
** In ''VideoGame/EarthBound'', you must talk to a specific Mr Saturn so that he tells you how to enter to Master Belch's factory. No matter that there are like 15 of them and they all look exactly the same. There's one town later in the game which blocks your progress because its inhabitants aren't willing to talk at first.
** This trope is [[{{LampshadeHanging}} lampshaded]] in ''VideoGame/{{Mother 3}}'', where a NPC says something under the lines of "You just have to talk to everyone, don't you? ... No, I'm not saying that's a bad thing."
* ''VideoGame/TheMagicCandle'' is one game that simply can't be beaten if you don't spend a lot of time talking to people. Unlike most {{RPG}}s, this one doesn't have a strict sequence of events or an obvious BigBad. Your goal is to repair the seal that keeps the archdemon Dreax from getting out and killing everybody -- and to do that, you have to find out ''how''. You'll need bits of information from all over the world to get the instructions and magical items required. Oh, and [[TimedMission there's a deadline]].
* ''VideoGame/PlanescapeTorment'':
** Mocked in a conversation with a random old woman early in the game.
--->"I'll bet ye've got all sorts o' barmy questions!" She mimics your heroic stance: "Greetin's, I have some questions... can ye tell me about this place? Who's the Lady o' Pain? I'm lookin' fer the magic Girdle o' Swank Iron, have ye seen it? Do ye know where a portal ta the 2,817th Plane o' the Abyss might be? Do ye know where the Holy Flamin' Frost-Brand Gronk-Slayin' Vorpal Hammer o' Woundin' an' Returnin' an' Shootin'-Lightnin'-Out-Yer-Bum is?" She spits, "Dung, all o' it! Only gets ye in the Dead-Book! I ought ta kick ye in the shins fer even pestin' a poor ol' woman about it all! Now go away an' leaves me in peace!"
** The Nameless One quickly becomes infamous amongst Sigil's more knowledgeable residents for his persistant questions, to the point where at least one character tries to ''run away'' before TNO can strike up a conversation.
* In the original ''VideoGame/{{Ys}}'', you can't leave the first town without literally talking to ''everyone'' in it. Only once you've spoken to every person in town will the head of the town guard give you a sword, and they won't let you leave town unarmed (for good reason). ''Ys II'' even makes you talk to monsters.
* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsArena Arena]]'' and ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIDaggerfall Daggerfall]]'' make use of database dialogue, meaning only quest-important [=NPC=]s will have anything unique to say.
** In ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'', as can be seen in the page quote, this is recommended by the game itself. While you'll still get quite a few repetitive responses, it's the best way to uncover quests, get helpful advice, and get information to fill in the deep {{Backstory}}. It may also be worth it for some of the unique "latest rumors", "little advice" and "little secrets" mentioned by otherwise unremarkable [=NPC=]s which adds a good amount of flavor to the game world.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'' brings fully voiced dialogue, which is both a blessing and a curse. In addition to hearing the characters speak, it's a blessing because nearly every named NPC will have at least one unique piece of dialogue. But it's also a curse because having to voice ''every'' bit of dialogue costs money for voice actors and the sound files add to the size of the game file. This still leads to [[WelcomeToCorneria a TON of repeats and situation inappropriate dialogue]].
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' has further improved the system, adding a large number more context-sensitive and unique dialogue. Even better, [=NPCs=] can now have ''meaningful'' conversations with each other. The downside is that everyone will be trying to talk to you at once, since dialogue no longer freezes time, and one NPC will frequently be drowned out by three others blathering at you. One particularly ugly case of this: if you don't talk to a certain Argonian just ''outside'' Riften, who's almost never referenced by anyone else, and help her out, ''then talk with her again'', you'll never be able to buy the town's manor.
* Some situations in ''VideoGame/CustomRobo'' and ''VideoGame/MegaManBattleNetwork'' require you to talk to everyone... literally. Or at least most of the people in an area.
* This advice is given to the player in ''VideoGame/SunsetOverImdahl'', then justified: [[spoiler:your character unknowingly has ThePlague, and the advice-giver wants you to spread it and wipe out your hometown.]]
* In ''VideoGame/UltimaIII'', you'll eventually run into someone who will say "You should go to bed! It's too late to be playing Ultima!"
* ''[[VideoGame/RealmsOfArkania Star Trail]]'' was particularly bad about this. There are at least a few quests that can only be solved by checking every single house in 300 house town, where 298 of the people in those houses will tell you to go away.
* ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' scatters its {{Fetch Quest}}s across the [[NonPlayerCharacter [=NPC=]s]] in town and at school, such that you'll want to either talk to everyone regularly (at least once per in-game month) or [[GuideDangIt consult a guide]] to catch all the quests.
* Sailor Venus's route in Chapter 2 of ''VideoGame/SailorMoonAnotherStory'' requires you to talk to ''every single person'' in the streets of the Rias Village in order to proceed - for no better reason than just having to spend some time waiting for some ceremony to start.
* ''VideoGame/SwordOfVermilion'' often makes you talk to most of the townspeople to acquire maps of the wilderness and caves in your current town, or for quest items that you'll need fairly soon.
* ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfHeroesTrailsOfColdSteel'' has "Hidden Quests" which don't show up in your quest list or get marked on your map: you can only discover them by talking to a specific nondescript NPC at a given time. Because of this, it's a good idea to talk to everyone at every possible moment you can. As a bonus, the game puts a lot of effort into giving every individual NPC different dialogue based on what's currently happening in the plot, so you miss out on a good deal of the game's script if you don't follow this trope.
* ''VideoGame/AtelierSophieTheAlchemistOfTheMysteriousBook:'' The game's help files tell you to frequently visit the town and talk to people, especially if they are not in their usual locations.

[[folder:Simulation Game]]
* ''VideoGame/RuneFactory'':
** You ''must'' speak to all of the townspeople to get all of the basic farming equipment that previous games have given you from the beginning, much to the chagrin of the player. Without an FAQ, some of the tools are very difficult to find. The game requires you to talk to everyone in town in order to start your next day on the farm.
** In ''VideoGame/RuneFactory3'', your first quest is, quite literally, to introduce yourself to everyone in town.
* ''VideoGame/HarvestMoon'':
** ''VideoGame/HarvestMoonBackToNature'' for the Playstation presented the choice to whether or not to let the mayor take you around and talk to everyone. Accepting, actually has him do this in cutscene form similar to the introduction cutscene so not only do you not have to be on the lookout for them, you also can't stop midway.
** ''VideoGame/HarvestMoonAWonderfulLife'' has Takakura showing you around town and talking to most of the villagers through cutscene. In ''Special Edition'' you can skip this by insisting on doing it alone, which has you go around introducing yourself offscreen.
* ''VideoGame/AnimalCrossing'' has the tradition of forcing the player in their first job at the beginning of the game to talk to every single person in their town. Mind you, you usually don't have a map handy unless you go to the postboards of it. Sometimes you can easily find them in their house, but often they will be outside wandering. This is even worse in the more recent games as the map is no longer divided into screens, and animals are free to wander the ''whole'' town. Even moreso, pity the person who joins in on another player's file, and the town has up to 15 residents if it's on the Cube. Oh, did I mention they don't tell you who you have, and have not talked to? Hope you have good memory.

[[folder:Turn Based Strategy]]
* In ''VideoGame/ShiningForceII'', talking to random people proves ridiculously useful. Kiwi and May join your party, completely out of the blue, just because you talked to them in Granseal and Rubble, respectively. Then again, this game is notorious for having people join you for the silliest reasons.
* In ''VideoGame/YuGiOhMonsterCapsuleGB'', a standard tactic to use when in the RPG worlds is to talk to everyone, as it can open new paths or quests.

[[folder:Visual Novel]]
* ''Franchise/AceAttorney'': The entire exploration/investigation part of the series is made of this trope. Basically, to advance in the plot, you need to talk to everyone and choose every dialogue option.
* ''VisualNovel/FleuretBlanc'' takes this UpToEleven. Characters have literally over a ''dozen'' generic lines of dialogue, and have a comment to make on every single gossip topic (sometimes providing something different if you've advanced the relevant subplot). Some of this is fluff, but most of it provides important information needed to solve the mysteries.

!!Non-video game examples:

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* This trope is derided in pen and paper roleplaying games where, thanks to the presence of a GM, you ''really'' can talk to all 130,000 inhabitants of New Gundark if you really want to. The movie ''The Gamers: Dorkness Rising'' lampshades this by depicting the new player talking to the first person she comes across (a merchant) and trying to gain intelligence about the plot from a lowly NPC. The other players incinerate the merchant to discourage her from doing this. Much to the chagrin of the DM, who was about to give them the information they needed through the mouth of the NPC. In this particular case, it was less "talk to everyone" that the other players hated, so much as "talk to ''anyone''"...

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/02/20/episode-810-efficient-use-of-time/ Mocked]] in ''[[WebComic/EightBitTheater 8-Bit Theater]]'' -- specifically, the version of this trope where you ''have'' to talk to someone non-obvious to advance the plot. This happens a time or two in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyI'', the game on which the comic is based. For instance, learning to speak Lefeinish requires you to go find the Slab (a.k.a. Rosetta Stone), then take it to the random NPC Dr. Unne so he can interpret it for you... apparently just on the evidence that he's a doctor. Though he did mention that he was studying their race...
** The ''real'' problem with the Dr. Unne quest is that you meet Dr. Unne in Melmond, at the beginning of the second act, in which he introduces himself and expresses incredulity that you've never heard of him before. The next mention of him is in Onrac, at the beginning of the ''third'' act, by a random NPC who mentions the good doctor is studying the Lefeinish language. You then get the slab from the dungeon nearby, and have to remember where you saw Dr. Unne in order to learn the language. The problem is that the time between meeting Dr. Unne and getting the slab can be as much as 10 ''hours'' of gameplay, with ''four'' dungeons in between, and several towns with their own multitude of [=NPC=]s.
* The [=NPC=]s in ''WebComic/GoldCoinComics'' really want the main character to [[http://www.goldcoincomics.com/?id=58 go to the tavern]].