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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » Mass Effect 3 (Page 2)

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Author Topic: Mass Effect 3
Dr Strangelove
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Did I miss the Elder Scrolls V announcement? I was just looking on Gamestop's website and saw that it's listed as coming out this year.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Nighthawk:
It's always baffled me how such a beautiful game like ME2 could include the whole probe sending thing. What genius thought of that idea?!?

I think, like most Bad Ideas in games, it was an interesting design concept and novel idea that would have been great as an extremely limited part of gameplay that is used alongside multiple other farming/surveying interactions. Then at some point, other elements of the gear upgrade system got pulled out and there were already sound, graphical, and coding elements invested in the surveying system and it became a much, much larger obligatory investment of time than it should have been. An accident of the design timeline.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Dr Strangelove:
Did I miss the Elder Scrolls V announcement? I was just looking on Gamestop's website and saw that it's listed as coming out this year.

If elder scrolls v comes out and still has the same combat and leveling system as Oblivion, I'm going to write off the entire studio as being the victim of a brain damaging gas leak.
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Dr Strangelove
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From what I read, they are going to be using a whole new engine.

That's what Wikipedia said anyways [Smile] .

I had a good time with Oblivion. Not great, but it was just so big that I was able to find something I liked. Namely, making two 55% Chameleon spells that stacked and walking around invisible the entire game, getting sneaking critical hits every time. The final Thieves Guild mission was one of the most enjoyable video game playing experiences I can remember, while the final Assassins Guild was one of the most nauseating (still fun, but the lighthouse room with the flies buzzing was disturbing. I felt like I could smell death). But I agree, the combat system was unimaginative. Regardless though, I'll buy it.

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Nighthawk
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quote:
Originally posted by Dr Strangelove:
Namely, making two 55% Chameleon spells that stacked and walking around invisible the entire game...

You didn't even have to do that. Eventually you find enough equipment with the invisibility trait on it to take you well over 100%. After that I was pretty much plowing over anything I came across.

It was a fun game, but had its bad parts. For example, when I reached one of the "bosses" (General Zod... I forget his name in game), right in the middle of his BBEG speech I fired a single arrow in to his head that launched him clean over his throne to a crumpled heap against the back wall. "Wait... That's it?!?"

Tried the same thing on the final boss. At least that didn't work then...

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Dan_Frank
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quote:
Originally posted by Nighthawk:
It was a fun game, but had its bad parts. For example, when I reached one of the "bosses" (General Zod... I forget his name in game), right in the middle of his BBEG speech I fired a single arrow in to his head that launched him clean over his throne to a crumpled heap against the back wall. "Wait... That's it?!?"

I agree Oblivion had serious problems (mostly in how leveling up worked: the worst possible thing you can do is choose your bread and butter skills as "major" skills) however this actually sounds amazing.

But I guess I'm a huge fan of anticlimax, sooooo...

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Samprimary
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to beat oblivion into mush, all one needs to do is not make the mistake of choosing skills you intend to use or that will level you up by accident. that is it. the rest of it does not have to be creative.

Eventually your 'hit with sward' skill is level 9,872,652,389,075 but you're still level one. And so, by extension, is the rest of the entire world. You kill people just by making direct eye contact with them while holding a sword. All foes die faster than the speed of light.

no i am serious bethesda is dumber than paste

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Rakeesh
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I agree, in light of the rest of the game's (in my opinion) excellence, that was a very strange mistake to have made. And the mechanic was so close to being really very excellent too, IMO, if - for example - certain things were made more difficult and particularly if players were advised more carefully, "This is what will happen if you choose this.
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Sterling
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I didn't play Oblivion setting out to break it and I still found it kind of frustrating and repetitive by the end. Part of that was my own stubborn insistence on closing Oblivion gates, I suspect, but boy, they sure found some silly ways to make progression less than exciting.

It's also one of the games that made "You did (such and such thing that was absoultely unavoidable to trigger the mission to advance)? You fool!" one of my pet peeves.

Still, it did have its moments. I liked the idea of gathering allies from each nation to help face down the final threat, and the graphics were remarkably pretty for the time, and some of the set pieces were well done, as was a lot of the voice work.

[ January 02, 2011, 01:01 PM: Message edited by: Sterling ]

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Rakeesh
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You didn't have to, at all. Heck, unless you picked one of the pretty inappropriate* classes, you'd run into the problems. If you picked a custom class as I did, not even intended (the first time) to be a bit of a game breaker, well, the game would quite quickly be broken. I had my fun by playing with the intent that nobody would die, not even the no-name schlubbo guards, heh.

But I still say, for my fun's worth, it was a pretty damn amazing game that for all of it's hobbled, strange level system, it was spectacular.

*By that I mean I forget what they even were, but one of the classes that didn't have blade, blunt, or one of the attacking magic schools in their major skills. But then, of course, there were plenty of workarounds even then for, say, a monk-it just would've made the early game quite a bit trickier.

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Parkour
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Making the whole world your level was such a dumb idea. It made it so that progress doesn't exist, and that if you didn't level your combat skills, you quickly started dying to everything. I walked out of the starter town and got murdered by boars in two hits wherever I went because I had leveled up a few times from social skills.

And the leveling system was bad in all other ways too like the multiplyer for stats. And half of your character options at creation were duds.

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twinky
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The leveling system caused problems for my spellblade on my first playthrough, since I leveled up too much from using my major skills and consequently I wasn't powerful enough to defeat at-level foes at a few points in the game. I wound up having to turn the difficulty down for those parts, which is a really, really bad solution to what should never have been a problem to begin with.

On my Shivering Isles playthrough, I made a new character and designed a custom class with a proper mix of skills to prevent either over- or underleveling.

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Samprimary
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the leveling system is broken even beyond the whole 'the entire world is your level of combat difficulty whether or not your level has combat abilities kept up to date' — when you use overhauls to give the world some degree of objective regional difficulty, or not, characters get overpowered or broken based on if they were being built to maximize per-level multipliers for stat upgrades. And stat upgrades tend to invalidate like half of the star signs you can be born to. Really, it's such a bad system that if it's in the next installment, that's almost enough to assume I'm going to think it's bad too!

Okay, but there are more tangible ways that the game gets tired and old, beyond both that and the drudgery of the gate missions.

As the levels advance, all enemies start turning into buckets of HP; at level one you can smack someone with a weapon or an arrow and they crumple (and this is fun) but by a certain level all battles are mashy grindy battles of attrition.

The world is full of dungeons. But all of them are nearly always built from three tilesets and all look pretty much alike.

Fast travel anywhere anytime out of combat is the easiest way to break the scope and immersion of the world. You just made a giant continent and ate all the novelty of that.

Don't make it so that all character interactions jam the camera dead-on into their face. It's stupid. Especially if this self-indulgent exercise in pimping out your faces and animation falls flat because your faces are so bad that better faces were patched in by fans in literally days after release.

Also, oh my god, bethesda, hire more than, like, ten voice actors. When, like, every dark elf in the game on the continent has the same mealy squeaky voice, for example, it's like, what.

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Dan_Frank
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Samp I know very little about the actual game industry, so tell me: Are the people at Bethesda who worked on Fallout the same as the people working on Elder Scrolls? Or different? Because a lot of the worst problems that plagued Oblivion were improved upon in Fallout. Not all of them, sure, but the most egregious ones were, especially by the time they did New Vegas.

The character leveling system (but that's SPECIAL so not really going to apply in TES)...

The world-leveling system (not gone, but not nearly as blatant and in your face)...

The fast travel issue (not gone, but at least you have to explore the damn world one time)...

The attrition battles (brought back in Broken Steel with a vengeance, especially on "hard," but seems to be absent in New Vegas)...

The dungeons still have some tileset repetition but often have at least a few interesting features (or maybe I'm just more forgiving of post apocalyptic dungeon sets, I dunno)...

More voice actors! Not, like, enough or anything. But, more!

Still jams the camera onto everyone's face but they aren't quite as ugly anymore so that's sort of a wash.

So yeah. Are the teams the same here? This gives me hope that the next Elder Scrolls will have learned from Fallout. Is that wishful thinking on my part?

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twinky
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Fallout 3 was done by Bethesda. New Vegas was done by Obsidian.
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Dan_Frank
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Right. I knew that at some point. Even so, Fallout 3 solved some of the problems plaguing Oblivion. Were those two the same design team?
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Samprimary
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I don't think the lead design was the same, no. That, and bethesda softworks was operating on a completely different design principle for FO3. The only real relevant question is how attached they are to maintaining the legacy of elder scrolls' system, which is the only reason why they keep it mostly the same in every game no matter how outdated it is.
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Geoffrey Card
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The folks I know at Bethesda are definitely very aware of the problems in Oblivion, and I've gotten the sense that they consider Fallout 3 to be an important and informative step on the road to improving their games in general.

So you can definitely expect Skyrim to be another major step forward from Fallout 3, and not simply a return to whatever was going on in Oblivion.

I've been playing Fallout: New Vegas voraciously for the past week, and I have to say that while Obsidian's games have historically had problems with polish (probably due to them having less time and money than the studios whose IPs they develop for), they are one of the best things that ever happened to western RPG storytelling. Ever IP they touch gets better. I'm really excited to see what they do with Dungeon Siege 3, and I HOPE that Bethesda contracts them to do another Fallout.

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Sean Monahan
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quote:
Originally posted by Geoffrey Card:
...and I have to say that while Obsidian's games have historically had problems with polish...

When I first read this, I thought, "What issue does Obsidian have with people from Poland?"
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Dan_Frank
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Glad to hear that, Geoffrey. And yeah, I agree with you about New Vegas; Obsidian solved so many of Fallout 3's problems, even problems I didn't specifically know they had.

It's sad to hear they're racist against the Polish though. [Frown]

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Geoffrey Card
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http://kotaku.com/5728236/the-next-elder-scrolls-has-new-combat--levelling

... and here's the proof!

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Noemon
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quote:
Originally posted by Dan_Frank:
It's sad to hear they're racist against the Polish though. [Frown]

Not that this justifies it or anything, but there is a bit of history to it. One time, Obsidian went on vacation and asked Lech Walesa to house sit for them. Walesa let their cat out, and didn't even go to look for her. When Obsidian got home, Walesa was all "Oh, hey, hope you had a good time. Things were pretty quiet here, especially after Mme. Urquhart left". He didn't even apologize, and he acted confused when Obsidian got pissed off about it. He actually threatened to take them to small claims court over the $20 and the souvenir shot glass that Obsidian refused to give him, but nothing ever came of that.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Geoffrey Card:
http://kotaku.com/5728236/the-next-elder-scrolls-has-new-combat--levelling

... and here's the proof!

very positive news. well, intent-wise. I hope the execution goes well.
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