This is actually the one thing that would make me want to risk wading through Manveer Hier's personal problems!
I don't know if their implementation of four distinct approaches was undercooked, but the concept itself really grabbed me when I read up on it back in March of 2017 and commented here about it:
I can't find anyone else talking about this, but the four dialogue modes in ME:A look to me to have been inspired directly by the four original Bartle types... which I consider to be game-context expressions of general temperament.
Here's one description I've seen of the four ME:A modes:
- Casual: For the Ryder who likes to hang loose, crack jokes and deal out the occasional sarcastic quip. Can endear you to some characters, but more reserved individuals will bristle at your flippancy.
- Professional: Strictly business. For the professional-minded Ryder, it's hip to be square.
- Logical: Assess the situation dispassionately, using the facts as your disposal. You might end up hurting some people's feelings along the way, though.
- Emotional: This option usually indicates a sympathetic, understanding, kind answer from Ryder, but it can also be used to play an impulsive or hot-headed character, depending on the situation.
These are almost instantly identifiable as the four fundamental, neurochemically-guided personality styles that show up IMO as the four Bartle types:
Casual: the Artisan/Killer (Manipulator) style, which seeks strong sensations through risk-taking and the adept tactical manipulation of people and objects.
Professional: the Guardian/Achiever style, which believes the Right Thing is to win by playing hard but within proper logistical rules and processes.
Logical: the Rational/Explorer style, which emphasizes discovery, strategic planning, and thoughtful creativity, but sometimes isn't so good at dealing with people.
Emotional: the visionary Idealist/Socializer style, which emphasizes diplomatic caring for people (including fictional characters) but doesn't always consider unintended outcomes.
I believe this approach could work in a game to help characters feel more believable as people... but I also think a half-hearted implementation could just be really confusing and feel like it works against enjoyable gameplay instead of enhancing it.