"Front Line" or "Cutting Edge" or something like that is I guess what they mean, which is technically the same thing really. It's just not how we use it.
What are Burer's again?
Man, I after reading those lists of features I am quite excited about this one now and it all sounds very doable. Indeed most of it already has been done to some extent by the mods.
The feature that has me most excited is the fact it appears that the quests are going to all be hand made. I hated the generated ones and while I'm sure they'll return it looks like their is going to be some actually interesting side quests.
That's actually what worries me the most. One of great things about STALKER was that you were free to do anything you want whenever you want. At any time you could stop following the main quest and wander pretty much aimlessly around the Zone grabbing stashes, artifacts, and - quests. Because they were randomly generated they were extremely formulaic, but infinite.
So the bottom line is, if they're making the hand-made quests on top of randomly generated ones, that's great. If they're making them INSTEAD of the randomly generated ones, that'll suck majorly.
I have to agree with Koki - randomly generated quests are great for replayability and just making the world feel like it's a bit broader than the narrow experience of playing through the campaign. However, they tend to be a little soulless. So they could be supplemented by a smattering of hand-made quests, but not totally replaced.
There are no random generated quests or stashes in any unmodded Stalker game.
It's just that the generic artifact/monstercamp ones that are there seem generated because they might as well be due to their simplicity, they just didn't go that extra mile.
Another thing I would like is to not have all the stashes only pop into existance once you find the log detailing it's location. It kind of ruined the exploration a little for me since I knew I couldn't really go off and explore in areas I didn't have stash markers because if I found a backpack/stash it would have nothing in it. At the same time I don't want their to be hand-made stashes so that I always know that I can get Gun-A at a certain location everytime I play. What would be great would be that as well as the current stash system there were certain number of stashes randomly generated and populated upon game start or level load. That way there is some reward for unchartered exploration as well as avoiding the pitfall of players memorizing where all the good items are.
Last edited by Angel Dust; 1st May 2009 at 23:09.
Wait you guys are actually worried that they might put some thought in designing their quests ? That they might actually take some time to write some backstory and dialogues that's relevant to your actions ? You guys are worried that the game might actually be fun and immersive ?? When did mmo style quests become the standard in single player games, did I miss the memo ? If I want stupid repeatable quests with a huge empty open world, where nothing ever happens except what I imagine in my head cause the developpers were too lazy to actually design missions, I'll just go play wow on a roleplay server.
Anyway that's just my opinion. Personally I can't stand the random feel of certain games lately like stalker, mass effect or farcry 2. Some of the level and mission design is so boring and repetitive it feels like it's computer generated. So for me this is the best news ever. I don't mind if they keep repeatable sidequests on top of the more carefully designed ones if that makes some of you happy. As long as the focus is on the latter one.
Hand-made quests are not bad, nobody has said that. The point is, there is a finite amount of content developers can put into a game before it is released. If CoP relies on a small number of premade quests, then once you've done ll those, the Zone will not just feel lifeless - it will be lifeless. With dynamically added quests, there is never nothing to do.
That said, you're right that nothing can replace the feel of a quest designed by a human, and we're glad that these will be featured. However, replacing random quests entirely would be of arguable benefit to the game's replayability and dynamism.
Nothing is being 'replaced', what you want would have to be added in the first place.
The text files specifically say 'kill herd of fleshes at Wild Territory' or 'kill controller at Yantar' or 'bring me this and only this'
They are only upping the quality on the exact. same. thing.
Okay, sorry for ignoring that ;P. But would it be fair to say that you can keep doing these quests repeatedly? They're not the type of quests that you can do once and then they're finished and there's no replay opportunity.
Random are only quests emerging upon re-entering a map (I personally usually just ignore them and pretend they don't exist), there is no special rewards for doing them.
Quests that you pick yourself aren't random in SoC.
Each major quest giver (Sid, Barkeep, Sakharov, Freedom/Duty leader) has a set amount of quests like 5-15, they aren't picked randomly of the row but rotate (endlessly), some of them usually become available only after a certain point in the game. The row may be finished and a quest giver will not have new quests for you, but after a while the quests will be reset except special cases like killing certain characters. When you finish certain quests in the row, you're given a special reward - unique or valuable item, not just usual stuff like money or ammo.
Bottom line is that you technically quite easily can accomplish all quests in Stalker (I did that each time I played), I just ignored "auto-quests".
EDIT: Oops. Didn't realise that Johnny had already posted up the translation...
Last edited by stormbringer_951; 12th May 2009 at 08:48.
The most important is that this level won't be corridor-like as Limansk in CS or Pripyat in SoC
Pripyat in SoC was not corridor-like at all in terms of map design. I spent 3 hours exploring it, unlike Limansk.
There were a few invisible walls and it was corridor-like in a few spots, I mean it's a bit annoying how often you can only move in a straight line to get anywhere, like at the start where you're entering the city.
It's obvious why it was done, so you could get shot at in the scripted fight more in the instead of getting off too easy, but most of that could still be done away with especially if there's less things that are fully scripted down to exact location.
What about that wall of text?
The first, that you note - complete freedom. We with the simple outfitting start on the edge of creek, first location, and you here already expect something customary in the spirit “marked, run to here kill villains! ”, but no - no commissions are given to us. And generally, no corridor tasks evidently. In PDA it hang reminding that it is necessary to find the broken helicopters, and all. Our freedom no one limits.
There are no random or typical Stalker quests anymore. At all. All 70 quests are hand made, varied, and, as a rule, have several solutions.
Lots of special/interesting/memorable characters.
4 'quick access' slots for items added to the inventory (at last), it became more convenient too. HUD became more practical/convenient as well.
Monsters became considerably more dangerous. F.e. poltergeist managed to elevate about 20 items simultaneously, bloodsucker now grabs his prey and really death-kisses sucking blood, and then throw it away - it's hard to survive that.
Anomalies now degrade all items that player has equipped, including weapon.
Many hand made gameplay-related details on the map (like f.e. interesting places where some special monster or character lives)
Healing is not instant anymore, the process takes about 10 secs.
Freeplay after the main plot.
Overall, more 'sandbox-ish' than before.
The demonstrated location (Zaton) was far from finished state in terms of graphical details and objects/flora.
Well that sounds awesome, particularly the bit about bloodsuckers.
I'm concerned though that they might become too hasty. I mean it's almost impossible to make a quality game of Stalker type in just 1-1.5 years even with engine and assets at hand, especially for a not so big company.
Other than that, it all sounds good. I don't have much faith in GSC living up to their promises, but I can live in hope.
Who keeps promises these days concerning games in development. Anyway, it was impressions of the current build they showed at a game show, not promises
Without generic quests, I'd doubt they'd reset.