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Thread: Mass Effect: Andromeda

  1. #51
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Anyway, I played it some more and I really don't see what's supposed to be so disastrous about it. I haven't seen a single glitch or bug and while there are some odd lines, most of the writing is pretty solid. Or maybe most of it has been fixed meanwhile?

    It's also not as open world as I previously thought it would be. There are two planets that I've found so far where you can drive with your space car and a couple of smaller locations where you're on foot, but it really doesn't take all that long to travel from one edge to the other. And the locations are actually pretty interesting. There have been a bunch of side missions, but I didn't find them at all overwhelming and they tie into the overall picture very nicely, a lot of them dealing with settling into a new place and studying it.

    Certainly there are some rough edges, but for a first game from a new studio, it's not bad at all. I'd say that the worst part has actually been the UI design, which seems to have taken lessons from the first Mass Effect and repeats quite a few of its mistakes.

  2. #52
    Quote Originally Posted by Starker View Post
    Well, it is clear that the Witcher 3 team has worked very hard to make their system work while clearly something has gone wrong with Andromeda's pipeline. We are unlikely to know what exactly happened without an inside source in Bioware Montreal. I think he laid out some pretty good guesses, though.
    I dunno. I think it goes somewhat deeper than that. From the pieces I've seen of DA:I and Andromeda so far it isn't just that a cool factor and vision is gone. It's like the games are written by people who hate their jobs (and probably have some strong self loathing), and some of that darkness seeps out into their writing. They also seem to have borderline challenged emotional intelligence since even the most charged moments seem forced....like the difference between two people kissing passionately and two cardboard cutouts being shoved together.

    Not entirely sure how to say what I'm getting at. Witcher 3, as dark as the tone was, had some genuine moments of humanity and joy in it that are memorable for people to still remember them. Even Geralt had a a quiet nobility to his character that simply can't be faked by an author who doesn't have the emotional maturity to grasp that nuance.

    The use of PC tokens only exacerbates the problem. If you want to fully see what I'm talking about play Persona 4, then compare how complex and nuanced Kanji's character is against ANY of Bioware's gay characters. They're pastiched almost on a level of blackface by comparison.

  3. #53
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Melbourne, Australia
    I'd explain it to you but my face is tired.

  4. #54
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: Sulphur, whatever
    Quote Originally Posted by Tony_Tarantula View Post
    I dunno. I think it goes somewhat deeper than that. From the pieces I've seen of DA:I and Andromeda so far it isn't just that a cool factor and vision is gone. It's like the games are written by people who hate their jobs (and probably have some strong self loathing), and some of that darkness seeps out into their writing.
    You really should stop projecting onto people you don't know. I know it's safe for you to do that because they can't talk back, but the internet isn't your emotional litterbox.

  5. #55
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Witcher has an established character whereas in Mass Effect the character is in a lot of ways a blank sheet to be shaped by the player. Also, the aims of the games are very different. In Witcher, Geralt's past and current relationships are very important. For Commander Shepard, the focus is more on having adventures with a rag-tag band of misfits. And yes, a lot of it is based on tropes, but it's meant to be.

    Now Andromeda is a bit different, in that it does have a personal storyline where you delve into the past of your estranged father and his shady dealings. But the focus is still on on the big picture and the themes it explores are fitting for a space opera. There's a galactic catastrophe happening. You have to deal with a species that is is being conquered by aliens and therefore sees every alien with distrust or worse. There's an exile colony where drug addicts litter the slums and criminal gangs rough up people who can't afford their protection fees. The Krogans have gone their own way because they were deceived by the establishment. There is a lot to deal with in the galaxy and most of it is not on a personal level.

  6. #56
    Quote Originally Posted by Sulphur View Post
    You really should stop projecting onto people you don't know. I know it's safe for you to do that because they can't talk back, but the internet isn't your emotional litterbox.
    Not my fault you can't distinguish between good literary art and rubbish.

    And I think you've got it backwards. It's safe for me to do what I can do because I work out more than they do....and because nobody really gives a fuck.


    Don't mistake that for hatred though. I know some people who are in that type of job and I don't feel much other than pity. Most American "creative" types I run into these days aren't very happy in their personal lives due to involuntary celibacy and poor physical health......exceptions made for the exceptional of course.


    In Witcher, Geralt's past and current relationships are very important. For Commander Shepard, the focus is more on having adventures with a rag-tag band of misfits. And yes, a lot of it is based on tropes, but it's meant to be.
    So basically what you're saying is that Geralt's story is all about his relationships and adventures with a rag-tag gang of misfits, and that Mass Effect is all about adventures and relationships with a rag-tag band of misfits?

    That you're even writing that indicates shitty writing. It tells me that you perceive Geralt as having actual human relationships with other characters and with the recent Mass Effect games you don't. Plus I think you're giving them a bit too much credit with Shepard being a "blank slate". Any way you play Shepard basically comes down to "do an asshole thing" or "do a nice thing", both said by the same character with the same method of speech, personality, and mannerisms......kind of like the decisions made in the Witcher games to say nothing of the boring tripe that the last two Dragon Age games were.


    I'd explain it to you but my face is tired.
    Then perhaps you'd prefer to blow it out your ass?
    Last edited by Tony_Tarantula; 19th Apr 2017 at 14:17.

  7. #57
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: Sulphur, whatever
    Quote Originally Posted by Tony_Tarantula View Post
    Not my fault you can't distinguish between good literary art and rubbish.

    And I think you've got it backwards. It's safe for me to do what I can do because I work out more than they do....and because nobody really gives a fuck.

    Don't mistake that for hatred though. I know some people who are in that type of job and I don't feel much other than pity. Most American "creative" types I run into these days aren't very happy in their personal lives due to involuntary celibacy and poor physical health......exceptions made for the exceptional of course.
    One: whether something is 'good literary art' or rubbish has nothing to do with your correlation with 'self-loathing', which speaks more about your own emotional filters and psychological makeup than anything else.

    Two: not only are you idiotic enough to attempt to psychoanalyse people you've never met, interacted with, or even know anything about, but you're able to know what their gym schedules are like through... what, informational osmosis via sniffing chemtrails?

    Three: your last paragraph is such a self-indulgent blowhard scree that I now know you're projecting so hard you can't see the forest for the trees. I had a solid giggle at that, for near about a minute. Good work!
    Last edited by Sulphur; 19th Apr 2017 at 14:48.

  8. #58
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Tony_Tarantula View Post
    So basically what you're saying is that Geralt's story is all about his relationships and adventures with a rag-tag gang of misfits, and that Mass Effect is all about adventures and relationships with a rag-tag band of misfits?
    Huh? I'm not saying that at all. Try reading it again, maybe?

    Nowhere does Geralt gather a ragtag bunch of misfits to go on adventures. He's not even looking to save the world or anything like that. Witcher is about a morally grey pulp hero who tries to make the best of a shitty world. In Mass Effect you are a more stereotypical "kick some ass, save the day and get the girl on top" kind of hero. And there's nothing wrong with it.

    What I'm saying is that they are different types of stories.
    Last edited by Starker; 19th Apr 2017 at 15:19.

  9. #59
    Yeh, that sex life and gym stuff is cheap psychology, noone likes that. Usually people are smart or empathetic enough not to make that kind of oversimplified assumptions. Great writers, poets, and philosophers often had poor sex life, crippling diseases, lived in poverty, and some of them've never seen the world outside their home city. And their works are magnificent. To me, and I'm not English native, the writing in ME:A feels like shallow water cooler chit-chat, at least in the parts I saw. I don't care whether the game was written by millennials or the old guard, or how many stomach crunches or sex they have every day, because none of this gives you the power of writing genuinely interesting stories. It seems like they had nothing interesting to say.

  10. #60
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    It's not like the series was especially literate to begin with. There has been a lot I've liked, though. Like for example the Angara and their struggle to preserve their culture. And all the shady stuff about the Initiative and your father's dealings has been intriguing as well, although I don't really know where it all leads yet.

  11. #61
    Eh, don't get me wrong...I'm writing in a bit of a bitter tone but I'm actually kind of sad about the whole thing. It used to be that Bioware made truly great RPGs, with stories that blended both the epic and the personal seamlessly. Even today there isn't a lot that stands up to Baldur's Gate 2 for Western RPGs and KOTOR is still the best Star Wars game ever released (unless you prefer space sims, then it's TIE Fighter). Even the first Mass Effect

    Their more recent games are written more like crappy fan fiction...and after four strikes in a row (DA:2, ME3, DA:I, Andromeda) I have to admit that the studio I used to love is a zombie at this point....the shambling corpse kept animated by the corporate parasite controlling the rotting remains of it's brain.

    I was probably being a bit over-broad. It isn't specifically America that is completely incapable of producing engaging fiction. It's that anything out of the sanitized, soulless corporate wasteland is.


    And to the point about it being a "blank slate". That's not why.

    Revan was a "blank slate". The Bhaalspawn was a "blank slate". The Spirit Monk was a "blank slate". The Gray Warden was a "blank slate". Every single one of those games managed to have characters who were interesting and engaging. In Persona the protagonist is a very literal "blank slate" and in that series every main character in them will feel like they could be a best friend with you in real life by the end of the game.

    All of those are "kick some ass, save the day, and get the girl on top" kind of heroes (nevermind that's exactly what Geralt does).

    Let's not blame it on game mechanics and put the blame where it lies: piss poor writing.

    but you're able to know what their gym schedules are like through... what, informational osmosis via sniffing chemtrails?
    By looking at a group photo of the writers.

  12. #62
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    I would not say that the writing in Andromeda is poor. I went in expecting "my face is tired" level of writing, but it's actually the exception rather than the rule. There's nothing wrong with the vast majority of the writing.

    Also, I like the grand space opera ideas that the game throws at me. There have been decisions where I literally had to walk away and think about it. Like for example do you destroy the enemy's research that can be used to destroy a planet or do you keep it for your side? Do you kill a ruthless water merchant on a planet where the merchant has been the only one keeping outlaws in check? Do you destroy an enemy's base used for turning people into enemy soldiers or do you leave it intact with the hope of rescuing the people?

    The worldbuilding has been pretty good too and there's quite a bit of variety in the environments. Whether it's a planet with overgrown jungles or a planet in an ice age, they have been a real pleasure to explore. Especially considering that it's the first game of a new studio, Mass Effect really shines in this respect, although part of it is certainly in no small part thanks to the Frostbite engine.

  13. #63
    Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Finally forced myself to finish it.

    The writing might suck compared to the original trilogy, which had some of it's own issues here and there. True, the "my face is tired" is a rare exception of bad awful dialogue, but the rest is either serviceable or so dull I ended up skipping. Everything from core concept, initial arc, character development, interactions etc, all of it is weak compared to the originals.

    The actual mission/game design is some of the worst I've seen in any game, it might have been more forgiveable if the campaign map screen transitions weren't so painfully slow and annoyingly unskippable.

    The crew characters, being the definition of dull and two dimensional, makes enduring this shitty design unrewarding. So, for example, when the awful progression design forces me to trek through 4 planets, 8 landing/takeoff cutscenes and all the god awful transitioning between systems just to have a "oh, this is where I'm supposed to give a shit about these people" two lines of dialogue conversation...just fucking...ugh!

    The character model artwork, like I said in previous post, looks so bad its intentional. I don't buy for a second that it's just uncanny valley due to graphics, especially given they can clearly make a cute/hunk characters here and there. It's either a lack of time or somebody trying to show us that not everyone has to be pretty (maybe I've been reading too much tinfoil shittery on reddit). Also, the Angara look ridiculous and all the females seem to have one voice actress.


    So,
    Bad Points:
    • Boring crew characters
    • Tired writing
    • Weapons were kind of crap
    • Team mates feel underpowers as usual, but more so.
    • I wasn't fussed on the weapon/armour reserch/upgrade system. Rather, it felt like it needed a bit more refinement.
    • Plot could have worked, I like that it's kind of a take from a civilian perspective rather than veteran military, but it makes so little difference it seems pointless, especially as it is never really explored or has any actual effect on the plot or gameplay.
    • I feel sorry for the playtesters having to sit through all of that repeatedly, maybe they were allowed to skip cutscenes.
    • I didn't like the open class thing, though the skills kind of looked a bit boring anyway.



    Good Points:

    • The scenery looks nice.
    • That one part of Eos had a nice, eerie alien feel to it, result of visuals and ambient sound. I liked that.
    • The remnant dungeons had just enough variation so that it wasn't a chore.
    • Architect fights were kind of spicy (I didn't notice the loot crates they dropped until the third or fourth one, kicking myself)



    /rant

    Its entirely possible that I'll soften up a bit and come to appreciate aspects of it. I did quit ME1 for about a year before going back and trying to like it, then actually loved it. It's also possible that despite my attempt to ignore all news about the game, I might have let my experience become tainted by how politicised everything is now.

  14. #64
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Glitch montage of a game still in need of patching.


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