THESE FORUMS NOW CLOSED (read only)

  • 04 Mar 2024, 02:23
  • Welcome, Guest
Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: 1 2 3 [4] 5   Go Down

Author Topic: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread  (Read 64238 times)

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #150 on: 07 Jun 2010, 10:39 »

People who know people who know things have hinted that Obsidz is working with Squeenix on something. Could be smoke but this guy is usually right, and he picked up on AP months before anybody else did. Didn't seem like it warranted its own thread, though.
So my guy was right. Obsidian is making Dungeon Siege 3 for Squeenix.

Ehhhh. Pretty classic Obsidian job. I couldn't really care less about Dungeon Siege, though. Indications are that work has been done on the game since '08, and everybody that I've talked to about it says it looks pretty great. Should see some stuff at E3.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

ackblom12

  • Guest
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #151 on: 07 Jun 2010, 10:49 »

Alright, I've got a few hours into AP and I seriously think the 6 scores are more than a little unwarranted. I could see 7.5 - 8 being much much more reasonable. the games controls are mediocre (greatly improved with the 360 pad compared to PC) but the skill usage is fairly intuitive. The minigames for hacking and the like I'm actually quite enjoying flavor wise. They're short, require you to pay close attention and connect the pieces of the puzzle at a pace that fits the setting quite well.

Agreed that AI is a bit wonky, but it's not wonky in a "this doesn't work" fashion from what I can tell thus far.

Everything just feels like this game engine would have been pretty alright if it had been released 2 years earlier. It's behind the times, the gameplay has quite a few flaws, though nothing gamebreaking, but it doesn't seem like anything is terrible as so many reviewers seem to feel. I also have no idea how anybody can feel that it's fair to directly compare it and score it accordingly to ME2.

As for the controls, keep in mind I haven't messed around with guns at all up to this point.
Logged

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #152 on: 05 Jul 2010, 01:17 »

i'm ankle deep at most and i can already tell i'm not going to like the combat and stealth in this game. it's way too janky. conversation is a delight but i feel like a lot of the game is probably going to turn out to be busywork to get me from chat to chat.
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #153 on: 05 Jul 2010, 17:15 »

Best I can tell you is go for a stealth build (Stealth + Pistols). If they hadn't included forced combat as a point of design, it wouldn't be such a problem, but as others have said, the Chain Shot ability is almost too overpowered.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #154 on: 05 Jul 2010, 19:18 »

What KvP said. I keep technical aptitude higher than Stealth for most of the game though, actually. Technical aptitude is basically a grab bag skill that gives some minor bonuses, and its rank 8 ability, Brilliance, lets you reset all your other cooldowns. More importantly, it costs only 3 advancement points, so you can have a fair amount of technical aptitude without gimping either pistols or stealth. And frankly, there isn't much that back to back Chain Shots won't solve.
« Last Edit: 05 Jul 2010, 19:24 by Alex C »
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #155 on: 06 Jul 2010, 00:15 »

the chain shot works for me really well because it's very similar to splinter cell's mechanic where you execute a guy and then can do a limited number of instant kills, so i can pretend that the action is gratifying (except when a dude spots me and evasion kicks in spoiling the whole damn thing)
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #156 on: 06 Jul 2010, 10:10 »

Due to weak sales, AP will not be getting a sequel, according to yon Sega.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Storm Rider

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,075
  • Twelve stories high, made of radiation
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #157 on: 06 Jul 2010, 14:44 »

Who's surprised by this news?

I'll wait.
Logged
Quote
[22:06] Shane: We only had sex once
[22:06] Shane: and she was wicked just...lay there

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #158 on: 06 Jul 2010, 15:17 »

I'm not surprised, but it does kinda bum me out.
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #159 on: 06 Jul 2010, 23:27 »

Yeah it was more or less apparent from the time the reviews first started coming in. MCA's statements since release more or less back up the anonymous statements made by the ex-dev on Joystiq re: Sega's mismanagement (specifically that Sega was never consistent in what they demanded, leading to a number of do-overs over the years, and that the publisher-demanded 8 month delay was mandated to be unproductive) but he came out defending the exec producer, who he says saved the project rather than doomed it.

I would have liked to have seen a sequel - they certainly set up one with the ending and at the very least they might have smoothed out a lot of their weird design ala the jump in quality from ME1 to ME2. But it looks like Obsidz's run with Sega is clearly over, and they can't justify bringing a sequel to another developer.

To be honest I think this is something we all kind of expected would happen. The combat really is rather clunky (aside from the martial arts, which I think are the most satisfying means of fighting in the game) and that more or less doomed the game. Looking back on it MCA told me at PAX what he's said after release, which is that they didn't make the game they wanted to make, and they did what they could with what circumstances gave them. I'm not even sure their original ideas ("honeycomb" instead of linear plot structure, more freedom, lighter tone) would have made it a bigger hit.

It's rough, certainly. Playing through it, AP felt a lot like Bloodlines, in that there was a certain roughness to the systems and the visual aspects of the game, but also a depth of polish and functionality with regards to more esoteric aspects of the game, particularly pertaining to choice and consequence, that is really unparalleled in Western gaming. I, as well as a lot of people, found those esoteric strengths to be more than enough to recommend the game, but the fact of the matter is that most people really don't care, and as MCA says himself, it's the base-level gameplay that appeals to people, and the base-level gameplay, while not as atrocious as that in Bloodlines, was not up to snuff of the games that AP tried to emulate. It's a really good first draft for a studio that's never done this sort of thing before, but it's not really good enough to carry it. Over time I think that AP's reputation will be rehabilitated in the same way that Bloodlines was (perhaps to a greater extent) but that always comes with the sort of cult that RPGs like this foster. But we're living in the age of $30 million averages in game budgets, and Obsidz's cult acclaim does it about as much good from a practical standpoint as, say, Kurosawa's did back in the day.

I just hope that Obsidz can capitalize on this failure gracefully. Dungeon Siege 3 is going to be their second Action RPG and it's apparently looking pretty great already, though they're de-emphasizing the usual Obsidz strengths of writing and characterization and the like. And of course I'll be really surprised if New Vegas doesn't do fantastically. The trouble is that it's looking like Obsidz can't really fulfill its potential - the ignorant gaming masses tend to characterize them as riders of Bioware's coattails. Not just in the sense of picking up sequels but in emulating design and the like, when in actuality Obsidian has a much greater focus on more complex and involved RPG system mechanics as a means to engaging players over the big feelings and epic narrative sweep that Bioware has used so effectively. You can think of Bioware as a Spielberg to Obsidz' Kubrick (you could also paint them as a Zemeckis) I don't feel like the sort of reactivity in Alpha Protocol is something that we'll be seeing more of, and I think that's a shame. Obsidz gets knocked for being too much like Bioware but in this case I think they got knocked for not being enough like Bioware. Oh well. I know Feargus has been trying to get a Baldur's Gate 3 started, maybe MCA can make some use with that.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Storm Rider

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,075
  • Twelve stories high, made of radiation
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #160 on: 06 Jul 2010, 23:58 »

Yeah, I may not be surprised by this news but despite the rough edges Alpha Protocol does some things extremely well that I'm sure will die with it and that's a shame. New Vegas should be the feel-good commercial success that Obsidian deserves.
Logged
Quote
[22:06] Shane: We only had sex once
[22:06] Shane: and she was wicked just...lay there

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #161 on: 07 Jul 2010, 00:04 »

So wait, back up.

Feargus's plan to get out from under Bioware's shadow would be to make a sequel to another beloved Bioware franchise which, BTW, would have to be under the ever so forgiving publishing of Atari right now? I'm not sure that's a worthwhile idea right there.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #162 on: 07 Jul 2010, 00:17 »

Hard to say. I know Obsidz really couldn't care less about how people see them in relation to Bioware and never have, and I also know they don't have any sort of aversion to making sequels (they were part of a pretty cool sounding PAX panel on this, but it was 2 hours before my flight left). If they didn't make sequels they would've folded years ago. With KOTOR2 and New Vegas (and to a lesser extent with NWN2), they've had an emphasis on extensively expanding systems and features with their iterations.

The thing with Baldur's Gate is that the license has always been kind of screwy. Black Isle had it for awhile but then they lost the overall D&D license, which meant they could only make a Baldur's Gate game, albeit one without characters from or reference to the first two. So it would be a BG in name only. There are apparently means of spinning similar license trickery in the present (Ferg mentioned open licensing ala KOTOR, which could technically cover 4th ed.) but yeah, it wouldn't be the wisest plan to bet on Atari right now (though I'm sure Atari could scrounge up some good capital, at least initially, behind a viable BG3 attempt. They'd probably be worse managers than Sega.) They could go straight to Hasbro, perhaps. If Onyx is as awesome as previewers are saying it is, it could make a good engine for a D&D sequel.

Elsewhere, in the latest bit of gaming press distortion re: Obsidz, Ferg and one of their lead designers were asked what Squeenix property they'd like to develop and they mentioned Chrono Trigger, and apparently this is news, though I'm pretty sure they were being flippant. That seems far less likely than a BG3.
« Last Edit: 07 Jul 2010, 00:23 by KvP »
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #163 on: 07 Jul 2010, 00:32 »

Squenix is not going to give Chrono 3 to an American company and anyone who has a job in making video game RPGs would want to make that. It is silly that anyone would consider that news.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

Storm Rider

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,075
  • Twelve stories high, made of radiation
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #164 on: 07 Jul 2010, 13:50 »

So wait, back up.

Feargus's plan to get out from under Bioware's shadow would be to make a sequel to another beloved Bioware franchise which, BTW, would have to be under the ever so forgiving publishing of Atari right now? I'm not sure that's a worthwhile idea right there.

Who said he cared at all about getting out from under Bioware's shadow? Feargus's numero uno job is to keep Obsidian open and running. If they've gotta make a few sequels to other people's games to do that, then that's business, and Baldur's Gate is something that the ex-Black Isle guys worked on in at least some capacity back in the day anyway. I know Josh Sawyer was making Interplay's BG3 before that got shitcanned. I have no idea how they'd transition the gameplay into 2010 design realities, but that's another problem entirely. As for the Baldur's Gate IP, as far as I know all of the D&D stuff for games in particular is still caught in a legal battle between Atari and Hasbro. Feargus did mention something in an interview recently about wanting to do a game with the 4e rules and potentially avoiding the whole D&D license clusterfuck (and having to work with Atari again) by doing an open licensing like Bioware did with KotOR and d20, but if that's even possible it's probably still in the very early stages of concept/negotiation at best. Maybe that's how they'd do the Wheel of Time game, if that ever gets off the ground.

I think New Vegas is the best of these deals that they struck, because it's a property that they have prior experience with and unlike Dungeon Siege it's something people actually care about. Ironically, Bethesda approached them about the deal rather than the other way around, and it sounds like Todd Howard has been remarkably lasseiz-faire about the tweaks Obsidian made to both the gameplay and the storytelling of Fallout 3 for NV. Whether or not that will be incorporated into Fallout 4, I can't say, it probably mostly depends on the fan response. It seems like the relationship with Bethesda has been much more amiable than the publishing deals with Lucasarts, Atari, and Sega. I've seen a couple of offhand comments from Josh on his Formspring about being stressed over the relatively short dev cycle, but it sounds like they were cognizant of that from the beginning (hence why they didn't do a substantial graphical overhaul) and it wasn't a situation like with KotOR 2 where Lucasarts basically completely pulled the rug out from under them.
Logged
Quote
[22:06] Shane: We only had sex once
[22:06] Shane: and she was wicked just...lay there

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #165 on: 08 Jul 2010, 01:01 »

yeah a lot about new vegas looks like a thing basically going right for obsidian for once in their careers. it's probably going to make a ton of bank and unless they somehow completely screw the pooch with it it's probably going to be a success in other ways too.

It's rough, certainly. Playing through it, AP felt a lot like Bloodlines, in that there was a certain roughness to the systems and the visual aspects of the game, but also a depth of polish and functionality with regards to more esoteric aspects of the game, particularly pertaining to choice and consequence, that is really unparalleled in Western gaming. I, as well as a lot of people, found those esoteric strengths to be more than enough to recommend the game, but the fact of the matter is that most people really don't care, and as MCA says himself, it's the base-level gameplay that appeals to people, and the base-level gameplay, while not as atrocious as that in Bloodlines, was not up to snuff of the games that AP tried to emulate. It's a really good first draft for a studio that's never done this sort of thing before, but it's not really good enough to carry it. Over time I think that AP's reputation will be rehabilitated in the same way that Bloodlines was (perhaps to a greater extent) but that always comes with the sort of cult that RPGs like this foster. But we're living in the age of $30 million averages in game budgets, and Obsidz's cult acclaim does it about as much good from a practical standpoint as, say, Kurosawa's did back in the day.

i'm in pain over this entire paragraph dude. i mean i agree its esoteric aspects are reason enough to recommend it (the actual impact of choices is neat to watch but even the way those choices get made and the way the player is rustled into the narrative flow through the dialogue system is actually fantastic), but it's not so much that people don't care about the esoteric stuff as that the lack of lustre on the stuff that the gamer has to immediately connect with on a moment-to-moment basis seriously hampers enjoyment. i'm at a point in the game now where i'm enjoying the action but that came after hours in which shooting and sneaking and simple actions were honestly excruciating.

the argument that people didn't want to look past the occasionally quite shitty gameplay in order to find the turd-stained gems underneath isn't really compelling, because they really shouldn't have to look past it. we're not just living in the age of $30 million budgets, we're living in the age when basically games are expected to be fun right away, not later after you've put in your time suffering through the stuff that is totally broken unless you have a certain amount of xp. obsidian doesn't have to give us PUSH BUTTON TO WIN GAME gameplay to get higher metacritic scores and/or sales, they just need to be able to deliver an experience that is compelling and entertaining on a visceral level too.

like i'm wishing it did have a sequel but really the only way their properties like this are going to get sequels is if they make them actually fun games. if history consequently sees AP as it is - a clever and rewarding experience with serious unresolved, seemingly unnoticed core issues - rather than as some kind of tainted glimmer of the way things could have been, then maybe obsidian will finally own up to the fact that there are glaring problems with their design process and quality control and then they'll smooth those problems out and then they'll produce a game that's actually unfuckwithable like we all know they are capable of doing.
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #166 on: 08 Jul 2010, 02:38 »

I don't disagree, and neither does Obsidz, really. They'd be the first to tell you where they fucked up. Sawyer has not really been shy with his low opinion of NWN2 (granted he came in during the 20% or so of the development cycle, but still) and the shoddy design that Obsidz has put in, in general. MCA doesn't go that far (he's a co-owner of the business, after all) but he has echoed your sentiments re: core gameplay pretty consistently. He has to say it over and over, since there's a large contingent of Obsidz' fanbase that is eternally frustrated that they aren't making turn-based Infinity Engine games anymore. He always says that the things that players remember most about games tend to be serendipitous and impressive events within games that aren't set up beforehand - what I most enjoyed about Fallout 2 wasn't necessarily the freedoms inherent to the game's design but the fact that you could get into a fight in a bar and one critical miss on the part of enemy could turn the scene into a Wild West-style free for all, with everything going nuts in slow motion.

The sense that I get is that they really did their level best. The combat on the whole is problematic for reasons that I can't really put my finger on - it has all the things that ought to make combat pretty okay - relative variation in approach, activated abilities, clearly understandable hit detection, enemy reactions, etc. but it's still not all that good. I think the two biggest things are samey AI throughout (intel gives you all these "strategies" that factions are supposed to employ but they all fight and die in the same ways) and a de-emphasis on movement, something that Bioware really honed in on in their design facelift from ME1 to ME2 - combat in most cases involves sitting behind cover and "charging" critical hits, which isn't all that dynamic in terms of action. One of the reasons I liked AP as much as I did my first playthrough was because I was a martial arts character, I think - aside from the Brayko fight and maybe Marburg the melee build is actually far quicker and more effective than gun builds, provided the right level of added toughness and given the inaccuracy of most of the enemies. I think mainly I'm just miffed because I went in looking to compare this game to ME1, which I thought was fairly reasonable given the timeframe (content and systems were hammered out long before we saw anything from ME2), and I think AP is a much, much better game than ME1 in almost every respect. But since it plays like a 2-year old game instead of a 2-month old game, it gets 3 or 4/10s? Rubs me as arbitrary. Which it is, but life isn't fair and all that.

The trouble is that this seems to sound the death knell of a certain stats-intensive sort of Action RPG, the rare sort descended from Deus Ex. As an example of that particular style AP is actually pretty exemplary (though the AI is still a big sucking hole) but what reaction seems to indicate is that RPGs in the future had better not really include stats at all, at least none that directly influence the experience of the game. It started with Oblivion's shift to twitch combat from Morrowind's comical dicerolling and it seems like it's ended with ME2's complete streamlining of the character concept.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

David_Dovey

  • Nearly grown up
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 8,451
  • j'accuse!
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #167 on: 08 Jul 2010, 06:17 »

the argument that people didn't want to look past the occasionally quite shitty gameplay in order to find the turd-stained gems underneath isn't really compelling, because they really shouldn't have to look past it. we're not just living in the age of $30 million budgets, we're living in the age when basically games are expected to be fun right away, not later after you've put in your time suffering through the stuff that is totally broken unless you have a certain amount of xp. obsidian doesn't have to give us PUSH BUTTON TO WIN GAME gameplay to get higher metacritic scores and/or sales, they just need to be able to deliver an experience that is compelling and entertaining on a visceral level too.

See this is how I feel about Assassin's Creed yet I get fucking chewed out every single time I try to make the argument.
Logged
It's a roasted cocoa bean, commonly found in vaginas.

ackblom12

  • Guest
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #168 on: 08 Jul 2010, 08:50 »

Assassin's Creed 1 pains me so much.
Logged

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #169 on: 08 Jul 2010, 09:00 »

Assassin's Creed 1 is a mess.

However, it also was well hyped and therefore easily sold well enough to justify AC2 which was an absolute gem. Certainly, Obsidian can do better. Ideally, they should get a shot. Sales don't bear that out. Life sucks.

Also, I'm completely in favor of moving away from stats-based RPGs. Just saying. Arbitrary numbers indicating progress ain't really a thing I would mourn.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

ackblom12

  • Guest
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #170 on: 08 Jul 2010, 09:36 »

I'm torn on how I feel about leaving stat based RPGs behind.

I like the idea and games like ME2 do it quite well, but I won't deny that I'm a big fan of tabletop games and I like having that spreadsheet aspect to the game that lets me do exactly what I want with my character, at exactly the pace I determine, with some sense of progression other than the game handing me new things via story and that being my only form of progression.

I'm pretty certain the OC tendencies in me would get over it at some point if it went away completely, but I'm always a little sad to see an entire branch of a genre go the way of the Dodo.
Logged

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #171 on: 08 Jul 2010, 11:24 »

Stat-based RPGs aren't actually dying, John's just doomsaying because of Mass Effect's success. Fallout's still very stat based, all MMOs are still stat based, Dragon Age was stat based, they're still around.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #172 on: 08 Jul 2010, 11:43 »

I like stats when they serve an integral purpose in a well-thought out design as opposed to just being tacked onto some twitch game to give some half-baked sense of progression. Stats were no detriment to exploration & strategy oriented game play like that in Heroes of Might and Magic, for example. The crux of the gameplay was figuring out just how much you can probably handle at any given moment with the resources at hand, after all, and stats & roll based damage introduce both a degree of uncertainty while also serving as a decent indicator of just how tough your force really is. Deciding whether to wait a week for reinforcements or to try to taking those resources by force now was a legit game play decision given that your opponents were working under similar constraints. It was almost golf-like in the sense that you were playing the course. The problem is, most stat based games don't require decisions like that. Final Fantasy games, for example, are essentially on rails and you basically mash Fight until you get to the next cut scene. Basically, the numbers were there to tell when to cast Cure or to get you cock blocked by some dragon. And frankly, unless there was another, better way to approach the dragon that could be discovered through proper exploration, the latter is just a useless exercise in grinding rather than an opportunity for an interesting game play decision.
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

ackblom12

  • Guest
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #173 on: 08 Jul 2010, 12:35 »

Stat-based RPGs aren't actually dying, John's just doomsaying because of Mass Effect's success. Fallout's still very stat based, all MMOs are still stat based, Dragon Age was stat based, they're still around.

Well, Fallout 3 was stat bases kind sorta. The stats didn't matter much because you could max out practically everything at a ridiculously fast pace if you wanted to. It doesn't fill that niche for me because it's just so incredibly easy to be great at pretty much everything.

New Vegas I suspect may fix some of that with the added difficulty levels.

I also think that perhaps I should say that stat based solo games are a very different beast compared to stat based MMOs and could easily be categorized as a different branch of the genre.

Also I was referring more to your comment.

Also, I'm completely in favor of moving away from stats-based RPGs. Just saying. Arbitrary numbers indicating progress ain't really a thing I would mourn.
« Last Edit: 08 Jul 2010, 12:46 by ackblom12 »
Logged

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #174 on: 08 Jul 2010, 13:33 »

Fallout's still very stat based.

I don't really think of Fallout 3's hybrid status as being in any way a virtue. In fact, it was Bethesda games that first made me decide that the sort of hybrid bullshit people are trying isn't something I'm interested in playing.
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #175 on: 08 Jul 2010, 14:46 »

As I said, Bethsoft has more or less abandoned stat-based gameplay since Oblivion. The only example of your stats actually mattering were a handful of skill contexts (hacking / lockpick / persuasion) in Fallout 3. I don't think it's doomsaying to say that stat-based gameplay is going the way of the dinosaurs. Without turn-based time progression it doesn't have a home, and turn-based time progression is most definitely dead in mainstream RPGs. Actually having stats impact core gameplay in a real-time context, as they did in Alpha Protocol, makes people unhappy. So there are two options. Either you phase out stats more or less completely and replace them with choice of activated abilities and such, as Bioware has with ME2, or you make them meaningless, as Bethsoft has. I fully expect lots of people to be unhappy with the "unfair" penalties they'll be getting for trying to use things they have no skill with in New Vegas. It's going to happen.

As for DA, my sense was that it was Bioware's throwback to earlier times. I don't expect its systems to stay the same over time and they're not going to make them more complex.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #176 on: 08 Jul 2010, 16:40 »

To me, it's less about turn based and more about scope and strategy in general. As a rule, FPS games favor immersion, intimacy and immediacy over being able to practically consider the stats of all the units involved or even handle multiple characters in the first place. Further, since you typically control a primary character that character MUST be capable of progressing through the game on their own merits without being too frustrating. As I pointed out when discussing the original X-COM, it's OK if a slow poke rookie gets turned into chunky salsa by the alien menace as you try navigating a blind corner because well, you have more rookies. It feels like a kick to the teeth, but there's an entire management apparatus in place and meaningful decisions to be made that lead directly to how many you have and how well-equipped they are. While jokes about strategy games and re-loads are common, such things are often more about maintaining your pristine score or having a "completist" inventory/civ/whatever at the end of the game. Likewise in MMOs (or hell, even Team Fuckin' Fortress) you can have many people working together to mitigate the weaknesses of any one individual-- If you die, you get scrape yourself back up, grab some friends and go at it again. In a solo FPS-RPG hybrid, however, shit like Brayko is just going to plain piss people off if they went the "wrong" build, full stop, because your protagonist is pretty much your only true weapon. So characters end up being capable of trying everything, more or less, and if you can read the tea leaves and predict what the game is going to require from you, it's usually quite easy to just grab an uber build and slouch your way through the rest of the game. I don't know about the rest of you, but it's hard for me to feel any tension once everything just starts bouncing off my power armor, a phenomenon that kinda defeats the purpose of going first person and strongly identifying with a single character in the first place.

Personally, I think stat based gameplay will survive, but I expect it to exist mostly in the form of RTS derived games like League of Legends and DotA AllStars. Such games are committed to implementing stats in a meaningful way, an impulse that I think is mostly just plain misguided in solo FPS games. Bleh, sometimes I wish I was in the industry 'cuz I've been thinking about this kinda shit entirely too much for the better part of two decades now.
« Last Edit: 08 Jul 2010, 16:48 by Alex C »
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #177 on: 10 Jul 2010, 01:06 »

ok the game's a lot better on the second playthrough. i think it's not even so much the gunplay that's broken as the stealth is broken and the gunplay is tied into the stealth in a real profound way and maybe that's why everything feels so off. the stealth is basically divided into two sections which are Are You Standing And Moving and Are You In An AI Character's Hard-To-Discern Field Of Vision and the cover is fairly lamentable so the gunplay is only as bad as it is by virtue of you needing it way more than you should.

but at the same time, the second time through you've probably got know-how for the mechanics and you've figured out workarounds and therefore even sneaking and shooting in the early levels is fun (see: parker's secret op in the beginning, in which i accidentally killed a marine with only my fists, which i only discovered because i read that i somehow created an orphan during the greybox intro mission)
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #178 on: 10 Jul 2010, 01:08 »

so i'm now disappointed that there won't be a sequel where they could learn from their mistakes but with any luck we'll see traces of AP in future original IPs from obsidian, especially in terms of lessons learned
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #179 on: 13 Jul 2010, 15:43 »

but at the same time, the second time through you've probably got know-how for the mechanics and you've figured out workarounds and therefore even sneaking and shooting in the early levels is fun

See this, I think, is the inherent problem of the entire genre, which Alex already well stated: you can't derive full enjoyment until subsequent playthroughs. Your first playthrough of any such game, be it Fallout, Deus Ex, or Alpha Protocol, is going to be a mess because everything you do is guesswork which, in theory, should be fun and exciting, but in practice is just frustrating. With subsequent playthroughs, you understand the game and can therefore play with it, trying to squeeze out every possible avenue and bit of emergent narrative you can think of- which is neat but it's not hard to see why that can never make it in mainstream sales.

Which, I guess, "hurf durf modern gamers want fun handed to them on a silver platter" or something but I mean...I like fun? If I die in a game I want it to be because I failed as a player, not because of a random die roll or failure to anticipate the game's mechanics.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #180 on: 13 Jul 2010, 16:31 »

Well, actually, I am almost the other way around-- I kinda like figuring things out, but usually I end up with such a ridiculously powerful character that most of the challenge is immediately leeched away from the game-- I just slap the "I Win" button until I get to the dialog and interesting setpieces, which are really about the only true draw left to me in RPG games. In AP's case, I'd hit Chain Shot, Brilliance, and then Chain Shot again. In Fable 1, I ran around with Physical Shield and Summon so i had a maxed out experience multiplier pretty much at all times, got bored, and stopped playing. I suppose at its heart it's the same problem though--a game really shouldn't flit between "Trivially easy," and "Aggravating" depending on which "balanced" advancement options you choose. I just assume that there's always a way to brute force your way through things and work from there.
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #181 on: 13 Jul 2010, 16:38 »

I actually thought that Dragon Age was pretty well-made in that regard - the ice spell progression was pretty overpowered (at least before Bioware nerfed it to some degree) but even that still wasn't enough to make it a "win button". It was pretty challenging. It's too bad the world was so drab.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #182 on: 13 Jul 2010, 16:58 »

That's pretty true, particularly if you don't go with an all-in mage party or use goofy Force Field tricks. One of the other nice things about Dragon Age was that there were a few really nice tier 1 spells that could be plucked right away and make your Mage very viable even if you decided to mostly specialize in trees that were late bloomers or highly specialized. Heal is enough on its own to keep a mage from being a complete waste and Mind Blast is a great li'l escape trick if used right. If you have those you can build the character into pretty much whatever you want from that point on and be golden.
« Last Edit: 13 Jul 2010, 17:00 by Alex C »
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #183 on: 13 Jul 2010, 17:12 »

but at the same time, the second time through you've probably got know-how for the mechanics and you've figured out workarounds and therefore even sneaking and shooting in the early levels is fun

See this, I think, is the inherent problem of the entire genre, which Alex already well stated: you can't derive full enjoyment until subsequent playthroughs. Your first playthrough of any such game, be it Fallout, Deus Ex, or Alpha Protocol, is going to be a mess because everything you do is guesswork which, in theory, should be fun and exciting, but in practice is just frustrating. With subsequent playthroughs, you understand the game and can therefore play with it, trying to squeeze out every possible avenue and bit of emergent narrative you can think of- which is neat but it's not hard to see why that can never make it in mainstream sales.

Which, I guess, "hurf durf modern gamers want fun handed to them on a silver platter" or something but I mean...I like fun? If I die in a game I want it to be because I failed as a player, not because of a random die roll or failure to anticipate the game's mechanics.

nah see it's not because i was frustrated and dying all the time, it's because i need a long-ass time to get used to the way the game operates. this isn't always a problem because some games get that feeling of the moment-to-moment operation of the game being fun.
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #184 on: 13 Jul 2010, 18:02 »

Well, actually, I am almost the other way around-- I kinda like figuring things out, but usually I end up with such a ridiculously powerful character that most of the challenge is immediately leeched away from the game-- I just slap the "I Win" button until I get to the dialog and interesting setpieces, which are really about the only true draw left to me in RPG games. In AP's case, I'd hit Chain Shot, Brilliance, and then Chain Shot again. In Fable 1, I ran around with Physical Shield and Summon so i had a maxed out experience multiplier pretty much at all times, got bored, and stopped playing. I suppose at its heart it's the same problem though--a game really shouldn't flit between "Trivially easy," and "Aggravating" depending on which "balanced" advancement options you choose. I just assume that there's always a way to brute force your way through things and work from there.

There's also that which, again, the genre can become more fun on subsequent playthroughs through attempted at different variations of the narrative or even emergent narratives just from fucking around. You know how to break the game: now let's see how I can beat it in the most insane ways possible. A totally legitimate process and fun way to play but, again, an extremely niche way to play. All of this is a side effect of the core desire of American RPGs: to replicate the fun of a tabletop RPG, which is, in my opinion, nigh impossible because the GM is a living breathing person who is pretty much playing the game with you in a tabletop game. If you min-max, they can make the game harder and cleverer. If you like screwing around, they can screw around with you. If you didn't build right for their intended campaign, you can find ways together to still make it a fun, enjoyable experience. You can never ever ever do that in a video game.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #185 on: 13 Jul 2010, 19:18 »

That's true; speed runs are a well established practice, after all.
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #186 on: 13 Jul 2010, 20:22 »

And low level runs and weird stats builds and melee-only runs and pacifist runs and etc etc etc
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

Storm Rider

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,075
  • Twelve stories high, made of radiation
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #187 on: 13 Jul 2010, 22:41 »

My first run of Alpha Protocol was a pacifist run. Because I'm just badass like that.

(It kind of made me want to kill myself at a few points though, not gonna lie)
Logged
Quote
[22:06] Shane: We only had sex once
[22:06] Shane: and she was wicked just...lay there

Ozymandias

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,497
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #188 on: 13 Jul 2010, 23:52 »

Of course sometimes games just make alternate playthroughs just too damn easy. Dead Space, man. First playthrough I decided "hey I'm gonna go ahead and do a cutter-only playthrough, so the other guns will be a treat for my second playthrough and the harder difficulties won't seem so hard". Man, using other guns makes the game harder. That plasma cutter isn't the coolest gun in the game but it is the goddamn best and that's silly.

Not that, you know, that's even remotely similar to the genre at hand, just saying. Fuck you Dead Space. If you weren't so awesome I'd hate you.
Logged
You are 9/11.
You are the terrorist.

David_Dovey

  • Nearly grown up
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 8,451
  • j'accuse!
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #189 on: 14 Jul 2010, 02:20 »

Completely agree on Dead Space though. It actually ruined the game for me in a tangential way. I spent money I didn't have on weapons I didn't  want or need and ended up stuck at a difficult juncture with no cash to pick up extra health packs, and it got so frustrating that I haven't played since. I kept buying every new gun that became available, looking for something that would at least be a plausible alternative to the plasma cutter and just ended up wasting money that could've gone elsewhere.

EDIT: I'm fully willing to admit that it was mostly stupidity and lack of foresight on my part that got me into that situation but if someone could've just told me that the cutter was the only weapon in that game worth a damn then I could've been saved a lot of pain.
« Last Edit: 14 Jul 2010, 02:23 by David_Dovey »
Logged
It's a roasted cocoa bean, commonly found in vaginas.

Josefbugman

  • Bling blang blong blung
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1,102
  • Are you Sure thats wise sir?
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #190 on: 14 Jul 2010, 02:56 »

I really liked AP, and VTMB. I also liked ME an awful lot.

I just wish that sometimes the majority of gamers would stop buying a tonne of boring boring shooters. I've stopped caring how many different sorts of thing that shoots bullets/bees/lighting I can use to stop the aliens/terroists/Cthulu. I've started to find that I just prefer RPG's over shooting, and there just aren't enough of them that don't have annoying grindfests throughout.

I personally didn't have that many problems with the AI, sure on occasion they simply stopped in one place that I couldn't get past, but then its just a case of waiting for Shadow operative to reload and punching them in the throat. That and maybe a bit of hyperawareness, but all in all I've seen worse. I just really enjoyed this game and wish that there were more being made, but as is, it just costs too much to make games like this that aren't going to generate millions in sales. A shame really, but then again I still have these to play.

Also, Omen Deng is awesome to the nth degree.
Logged
Oddly enough the "oh no boobs!" box in the background of todays comic is my usual reaction.

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #191 on: 14 Jul 2010, 07:03 »

Of course sometimes games just make alternate playthroughs just too damn easy. Dead Space, man. First playthrough I decided "hey I'm gonna go ahead and do a cutter-only playthrough, so the other guns will be a treat for my second playthrough and the harder difficulties won't seem so hard". Man, using other guns makes the game harder. That plasma cutter isn't the coolest gun in the game but it is the goddamn best and that's silly.

Not that, you know, that's even remotely similar to the genre at hand, just saying. Fuck you Dead Space. If you weren't so awesome I'd hate you.
Actually a souped-up ripper is the best weapon.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #192 on: 14 Jul 2010, 11:25 »

or a LINE GUN
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

Johnny C

  • Mentat
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 9,483
  • i wanna be yr slide dog
    • I AM A WHORE FOR MY OWN MUSIC
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #193 on: 14 Jul 2010, 11:25 »

only weapons not really worth it were assault rifle and flamethrower
Logged
[02:12] yuniorpocalypse: let's talk about girls
[02:12] Thug In Kitchen: nooo

Alex C

  • comeback tour!
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5,915
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #194 on: 14 Jul 2010, 14:17 »

It bums me out how often flamethrowers suck in games. I don't care how impractical they are in real life, I wanna set everything on fire.
Logged
the ship has Dr. Pepper but not Mr. Pibb; it's an absolute goddamned travesty

David_Dovey

  • Nearly grown up
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 8,451
  • j'accuse!
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #195 on: 14 Jul 2010, 21:55 »

The flamethrower in GTA is pretty sweet  :police:
Logged
It's a roasted cocoa bean, commonly found in vaginas.

Storm Rider

  • Older than Moses
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,075
  • Twelve stories high, made of radiation
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #196 on: 14 Jul 2010, 22:55 »

Yeah the ripper, line gun, and especially the force gun are fucking boss once you properly upgrade them. I am personally of the opinion that playing the game with just the cutter is selling the game short.
Logged
Quote
[22:06] Shane: We only had sex once
[22:06] Shane: and she was wicked just...lay there

est

  • this is a test
  • Admin emeritus
  • Older than Moses
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,157
  • V O L L E Y B A L L
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #197 on: 17 Jul 2010, 21:18 »

I stopped playing it after the bit where you restart the engines because I couldn't deal with the controls.  They just felt wrong.
Logged

est

  • this is a test
  • Admin emeritus
  • Older than Moses
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4,157
  • V O L L E Y B A L L
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #198 on: 17 Jul 2010, 21:19 »

Also I won't be buying AP for the same reason I'm not buying ME2.  Its combat looks like ME1, ie: fucking awful.
Logged

KvP

  • WoW gold miner on break
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6,599
  • COME DOWN NOW
Re: Alpha Protocol photo depository thread
« Reply #199 on: 18 Jul 2010, 02:41 »

The feel of combat in AP feels slightly different from ME's, but the stealth approach provides a handy workaround of the tedium. ME2's combat feels very, very different.
Logged
I review, sometimes.
Quote from: Andy
I love this vagina store!
Quote from: Andy
SNEAKY
I sneak that shit
And liek
OMG DICK JERK
Pages: 1 2 3 [4] 5   Go Up