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Sin 2 :)

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http://eurogamer.net/article.php?article_id=59893

 

Ritual Entertainment's long-awaited Sin 2 is to be released episodically over Valve's Steam digital distribution system, with episodes lasting around six hours each to be released "every three to four months" for around $20 (£11.38) an episode.

 

Sounds good to me. Though I never did play the first :laugh:

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They really need to make games less expensive. They should realise that there are a ton of miserly bastards out there like me who would buy twelve games a year if they were £20, but only buy about four games a year because £30-£40 quid seems like much more of a blow to the bank account.

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One really wonders about the intelligence of those in charge of running large software companies. They spend millions on developing futile copy protection schemes which will be cracked within days of release, and sell games and software at a price that puts them out of reach for most consumers. If they had an ounce of sense, they would realise that by lowering their price point dramatically and not bothering with copy protection schemes, they would make more in the long run from increased sales volume (assuming the quality is there). It is really quite simple, but shortsighted greed always gets in the way of common sense. Of course, if game developers actually did this, they would really need to make sure they put a bit more effort into the quality of their product to make the sales needed to deliver a return on their investment... when will people learn....

 

and so endeth mine ranting and gnashing of teeth...

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Along that line, didn't Serious Sam supposedly do quite well, and with a pricetag of $20? Must have, if they're making a sequel (or made? I don't know). Indeed, if a developer or publisher wants to innovate in the distribution realm, they could certainly try something like that - dropping way below everyone else's prices, and making it simpler for everyone just to buy the friggin thing, than to find cracks and pirated versions.

 

I wouldn't have bothered with Sin2 anyway, but this just guarantees it. Nor Duke nor Prey (those will be Steam too, right?) I hear people saying "this is the wave of the future, sink or swim," but it's only the future if we all want it to be. Simply don't support it, and it won't be.

 

It's funny, if you read over on Blue's, it's really starting to come to light now. Some paraphrases I remember from about an hour ago,

 

'seems the anti Steam people were right in their paranoia'

'and so Steam becomes the slippery slope I dreaded it would become'

'welcome to the offline MMORPG model for FPS games - never ending installment payments'

 

Ya know, I hate to say I told ya so, but..........

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All you have to do is wait a few months after a game has come out and buy a used copy or a cheap one from Ebay. I paid 12 $ total for D3, T1/2 were like 15 each, I once got the Starcraft Xpansion pack for free when I found it for 9 $ at a Staples and changed my long distance which gave me 10 $ credit in the store. When the phone company called to confirm the switch I said I had no idea what they were talking about. ;) Now I go to this store downtown every few months, they will have a batch of older but still fun games for like 10$ each in a big bin.

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That was to be expected, wasn't it? Since HL2 was hyped enough Steram got enough inertia to continue. I wont buy games that use Steam for delivery. Well, my wife will be happy because she always complained that I pay money for games I could get for free as well. So it will be cheaper now. :)


Gerhard

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I’m not ideologically against digital distribution. It could be a very good thing and funnel more money to the developer rather than the publisher. Though the sever owner now takes on the role of the publisher to some extent. But steam I hate. I have had endless problems with it and it still refuses to let me work offline.

 

At least Biowares method, on the premium modules, states it needs the internet connection all the time, and I’m fine with that. But steam is a bloated and buggy mess that they seem to have done little to improve since it left beta, where believe it or not it was much worse.

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I did not know that about Bioware. Thanks for the info; I'll be avoiding them too, then.

 

Online content delivery is certainly a decent way to get things done. I have no problem with it, in the simplest sense. I've played MMORPGs where you of course must connect and stay sync'd. It's part of the process for a game like that - but it's not for HL2 and its festering offspring. When,

 

1. you have to authenticate every time you start up, or whatever variations there are of that claim (because the developer is more concerned about thwarting piracy - which they will never succeed at - than at delivering a quality product people actually want to buy),

2. which brings it's own delays and problems,

3. you must run some reputedly bloated buggy system to do so (even the Sierra installer for HL1 annoyed me - Steam didn't stand a chance),

4. the whole point of it was going to be ease of use and reduction of costs, and yet the game still costs the same (more) than in stores, and it's anything but easy,

5. when soon every other company will want their own content delivery system, so soon you've got 15 different Steam type things running all the time, and my only voice/vote on the matter is to not support it with my money,

 

Forget it. Not a chance. My cash will not support it. And if all companies start going this route, I will simply not buy games anymore.

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Who cares. The game will be shit, all games are shit and/or derivative these days. I just don't game any more.


Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

character models site

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Who cares. The game will be shit, all games are shit and/or derivative these days. I just don't game any more.

 

Do you read though? As every work of fiction has been derivetive since at least Homer.

 

Scifi Horror? they can still be boiled down into the same stages as ever other type of fiction. (I did have the link for that somewhere I can remember the guys name who did the study)

 

Yes every game is derivetive in some way of one that passed before but the improvments, the variuations on theme, the different combination of ideas, the story, make at least some of them worth playing.

 

 

Biowares sytem by the way works in the game (Neverwinter nights) it isnt a seperate piece of software. You download the mod, install it, run the game. If you play the premium mod it connects to the server and you play. Think of it in the same way as a mmog. It isnt intrusive and Ive never had a problem with it.

 

Systems like steam I dont like. Why do we need the programe. Why not just run it of a webpage and have the software/game we download just do a server check if they need one( Like xp and that is annoying enough) WHy the need for a secong piece of buggy software?

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Yes every game is derivetive in some way of one that passed before but the improvments, the variuations on theme, the different combination of ideas, the story, make at least some of them worth playing.

That's just the problem, the same genres are rolled of the production line endlessly with little or no changes, just different graphics. Games simply bore me these days. The feeling of deja vu is too overwhelming.

Literature is a passive experience, plot is all it contains, so all the author needs is a different plot for his next book to keep the reader happy.

Games are interactive, that's their most important quality, and it's the interactions that are almost identical in every genre game. Thats why they become tedious after the third one - and we're on what now for the FPS genre- the 2000th one?


Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

character models site

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I see your point but from that thinking every tennis game is the same, every baseball game, every football game. The mechanics are the same, the interactions are set in stone (the rules)

 

But these games don’t go stale because setting and the apposing team is different, the chance of winning is never known. The fps genre cannot change into something it is not. It will always boil down into pointing a gun and shooting. But the setting, the opposition and the difficulty and indeed the rules will change. The plot/story will also change and it is these things that need work.

 

I will agree that many fps games are very similar but stating that all of them are the same and any new ones will be bad is plainly wrong. The evolution and innovation in this genre does have to be increased. INdeed I want a much better plot. I hopig that Remedy does it again with Alan wake (http://www.alanwake.com/)

Ritual has produced some of the most interesting and rewarding games in this genre, I have hopes that SIN2 will build on this.

 

 

If valve were doing it I don’t know if I would be at excited. Yes they know how to rework an ID engine and call it their own, and yes they make a good facial system but their plotting is full of hole's and their endings are right of seventies TV sci-fi.

 

 

I hope you didnt take offence with my above post I reread it just now and It could read as a bit rude, which I didnt intend.

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That brings me back to my point... if game devs sell their games at a lower price point, they will have to sell more copies to make enough moeny to make it worth the effort. To sell more copies, they must have a much higher quality game than they get away with at the moment, and they must make an effort to make it stand out from the crowd by giving an old idea a new twist, doing something a bit differently.

 

I never buy games anymore until the price has dropped down, even if that means waiting for 6 - 12 months after the game has been released before purchasing my own copy. I still don't have Doom 3 yet!

 

I mostly agree with oDDity on this, I have bought very few games over the last few years... they mostly seem like the same game once you get the CD out of the packaging. Personally, I think if you aren't going to make a game that is highly original, then at least take a well used idea and improve it. I guess that is what TDM is all about - taking the best of Thief and improving on it. Sure it is a derivative concept, but that is not the point... There is a difference between something that is simply derivative, and something that is an attempt to improve on the original concept.

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I see your point but from that thinking every tennis game is the same, every baseball game, every football game. The mechanics are the same, the interactions are set in stone (the rules)

 

But these games don’t go stale because setting and the apposing team is different, the chance of winning is never known. The fps genre cannot change into something it is not. It will always boil down into pointing a gun and shooting. But the setting, the opposition and the difficulty and indeed the rules will change. The plot/story will also change and it is these things that need work.

Sports are played to produce a winner, it's not the actual sport or its rules that matter, it's the contest. If you're only playing an FPS against someone else to see who wins then it doesn't really matter what the game itself is like - it's really just the lubricant. That's why FPS fans are happy wth any old shit. They're not really interested in the game itself, it doesn't really matter what the tecnicalities are, the mano a mano contest remains the same. That's why people still play Counterstrike and other old games, they'd be just as well playing that forever as buying the next FPS that falls off the production line, since it's really only goig to be the same contest with better graphics, they aren't getting anything different from it.

The stealth genre is probably the most underused in games, and Thief 1 and 2 are the only games that have done it well, so it's still fresh.

THen again, everything is shit these days. Games are shit, movies are shit, TV is shit, music is shit. The whole thing is just fucked up. I say we scrap it all and start again. It's all just gone way down the wrong path.


Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

character models site

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THen again, everything is shit these days. Games are shit, movies are shit, TV is shit, music is shit. The whole thing is just fucked up. I say we scrap it all and start again. It's all just gone way down the wrong path.

 

I like your thinking oDDity... I say we should abolish copyright... it only serves to line the pockets of big publishing companies that produce mountains of shit. Getting rid of copyright would go a long way towards wiping the slate clean. I very rarely buy CDs anymore - I have all the music I like, and it is not often that someone comes up with something new (I write a lot of music, but I do it for myself, I don't intend to publish any of it. If I do publish it, I will not copyright it as such, it will be a creative commons sort of thing).

 

I can't remember the last time I saw a movie that didn't dissapoint me... I am sick of Hollywood USA-centric movies that are all special effects and no substance. Before copyright was invented, artists didn't care whether what they made was derivative or not, it was about quality and substance, about producing something that was unique, even if it wasn't original (I hope the difference between the two is clear to all). An artist created work for themselves, and if they were good enough, someone would pay them to do it. These days, publishers spew out any old crap and market it as the latest 'must have' thing, even though it is vacuous, vile, contemptible garbage worth less than a mound of elepant dung (at least elephant dung has some uses).

 

Damn straight oDD, scrap it all!

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The only true way to scrap it all would be to wipe out the world. Abolishing stuff like copyrights won't remove the key problem, that being people with little or no imagination. Society and life needs to start over and rebuild from the ground up.


Loose BOWELS are the first sign of THE CHOLERA MORBUS!

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Well yes, abolishing copyrights (and patents) won't stop people with no imagination from producing crap, but it will stop people from mass producing and marketing it, since copyright is really for the publishers benefit, not the artist (except in those rare instances where the artist is also the publisher). With no copyright, publishers will only bother to produce stuff that will be genuinely worthwhile, as they won't have the luxury of exclusivity to monopolise the production of any particular artist's work. You can see how this works with old stuff where the copyright has lapsed - anyone can print and publish a Mozart symphony, but not many publishers bother printing of his less popular works. And with things like printers, DVD burners and electronic distribution, most publishers would go out of business without copyright, since people can simply share/distribute/sell their own stuff without going through any middle men. That is why the publishing industry is getting so huffy with peer to peer file sharing networks.

 

The best thing anyone could do at the moment is ban television or destroy TV transmitters. Blow up your TV!

Edited by obscurus

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It does make one wonder then if the lack of originality is such a problem that we are involved with a mod that’s stated goal is to recreate the playing experience, though not the setting, of a past game? After all

since it's really only going to be the same contest with better graphics, they aren't getting anything different from it.
improvements or not the core gamp lay will be the same or what is the point in making it? Any sequels stated goals are build on the success and good points of its predecessor.

 

Stating that because only thief 1 and 2 were successful at this type of game play and so it is still fresh is a rather blinkered view. These two games are as derivative as any other fps, but like many fps it introduced one new mechanic an in this case it worked. Stealth to carrying degrees has been used in every fps since (save serious Sam :lol:) There are games that copy thief’s ideas closely and others that take what they need for their gamp lay mechanic to work. The closest to thief is splinter cell this merged the gamp lay mechanics of thief with the more traditional fps. You can ghost almost all of the first and third game, I’ve done it. The only real difference between these games is the setting and characters the basic rules of the game are the same. Can you name something new that can be done with stealth?

 

Some of the newer fps' are merging RPG elements inspired by Deus ex, it is this merging and evolution of ideas that will keep the genre going. A complete new start is not possible for the simple reason that there is no point in recreating the wheel. The mechanics are not the problem. The problem is a lack of story depth. Some try, max Payne and strangely tribes 2, though that was very badly implemented the potential was there. If the stories are returned to the centre rather than as the excuse for the shooting then more of these games will be worth purchasing.

 

The point about an artist publishing their own work and being paid for it if it has merit is well made. However this brings us full circle to a digital distribution system, and why I, though I hate the thing, will use steam. The developer is empowered by these systems to publish their own work. The only costs they incur are development and the distribution, which is massively smaller than printing the DVD manual and box. It allows them to gain a much larger share of the profits of their own works, and in the end their works will win or lose based on their work.

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Stealth in FPS - my cock. There's always the obligitory 'stealth level' in an FPS which everyone hates. Most of them don't' actually include any stealth mechanics in the game, but just say 'ok, you've been mindlessly shooting any moving object for the last 30 levels, but now we want you to walk through this part of the map with your guns holstered and without letting any AI see you'

 

I don't care about story either. The basic principal of any story that involves walking through a series of maps shooting people and blowing things up with a variety of big guns, will always be crap. It's inevitable. Why game developers wanted to take the worst genre of movies - the action movie - and emulate them in games, is a mystery to me.

 

I don't want to see a bunch of stealth games either. I've already had my fill wth Thief. I can't just keep playing the same genre with slight differences to plot or graphics.

Virtually any game I try these days I quit within a few hours. My initial thought is usually 'Hang on, haven't I played this before'?

 

The only genre I haven't tired of is the RPG, because there's a certain amount of freedom to wander around and explore, play a wide variety of different characters, progress in a wide variety of different ways, learn a wide variety of different skills, do what you want when you want etc. You can do stealth, action, or talk your way out of situations. There's so much more depth to them (the good ones). Not that I like every RPG, but Gothic 3 and Oblivion are the only games I looking forward to with any hope.


Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

character models site

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Stealth in FPS - my cock. There's always the obligitory 'stealth level' in an FPS which everyone hates.

 

Please don’t be vulgar.

 

But in any case I was referring to the ability to hide, sneak past. Pariah, farcry?- it wasn’t the aim in either game but could be done quite effectively.

 

I don't care about story either. The basic principal of any story that involves walking through a series of maps shooting people and blowing things up with a variety of big guns, will always be crap. It's inevitable. Why game developers wanted to take the worst genre of movies - the action movie - and emulate them in games, is a mystery to me.

 

That is true to varying degrees but there is scope for this to improve. You site gothic 3 and oblivion as games you are looking forward to. What are they but fps with RPG elements? (Ok you can play in third person). The fps needs to expand and it has been doing. Deus ex (though it didn’t start it) can be sited as invigorating the fps formula and showing that rpg elements add to the experience. The story that you reject so utterly, and is central to the RPG experience, has to be improved to change the fps into the rpfps.

 

Take the story out of the RPG and all you have is a landscape to wander about, and some very trivial npc's to trade with. But the main aim is to kill things, sounds abit like an fps with a bigger map. Take the story out of the fps and you have serious sam :rolleyes: or just an excuse to shoot things. Take just the killing out of an rpg though and you have a story and characters an adventure game infact.

 

The story and the characters are what make games, books and films work. Doom3 failed for many people not because it was too dark, and not because its guns weren’t good enough. but because there was little character building and about a paragraphs worth of plot.

 

A complex plot can work in an fps as well as an rpg. Deus ex managed it, arguably its sequel did. It isn’t first person but Max Payne 1 and 2 managed it. But yes there is lots of room for improvement. Pariah aimed for this and missed by wide amount but the attempt was there. Perhaps those that worked did so because their main aim wasn’t to let you shoot things, story telling was.The shooting was a device to move the story/plot and characters along. None has the story depth of a true rpg, but they don’t have to, an rpg normally lasts about 40 hours in which you spend at least two thirds killing things, an fps normally last 10 hours at most

 

 

The fps has to become more like an RPG, as you point out they are becoming very repetitive.

 

Im looking forward to dreamfall btw. (http://www.dreamfall.com/)

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Gothic 3 and Oblivion are FPS with RPG elements? Hello?

Bad RPGs like Dungeon Siege are just endless hack and slash, but good RPGs are not. Good RPGs give you alternate ways to level than killing. Good RPGs give you alternate methods of playing, such as stealth and speechcraft, so you can talk your way out of trouble.

No FPS story will ever be any good in the way RPG or adventure game stories can be, it's a contradiction in terms. AS I said a plot wich consists of a sries of maps in which you run around killing and destroying cannot be good. If it doesn't consist of that then is ceases to be a shooter and becomes and action/adventure game.

You CAN take the plot out of RPGs, and that's the very direction they're headed in. You just have a living landscape with guilds and NPCs to interact with. You basically just live there among the people having general adventures instead of having some arch boss to defeat. THe better AI get, the more fun this experience will be. Many people played Morrowind without doing the central plot. Gothic is more plotcentric though, or at least 1 and 2 were.


Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

character models site

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