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Thread: Thief 4 Officially Announced!

  1. #926
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Deutschland
    The problem is that unless the fantasy world manages to change the actual use of (in this case) weapons, it relies on experience from reality (although this is already blurred by Hollywood and pop culture). And in this reality the idea of having a shorter sword to gain speed (which is negligible) or save weight (which is negligible as well when long one handed swords from the 11th century weight less than one kilo) is simply ridiculous. In a RPG universe, however, where everything is subject to a system of balance through (dis)advantages of everything gameplay-relevant, it gets expanded to serve this very gameplay. If the fantasy world doesn't manage to alter the context of everything it changes from reality, it becomes inconsistent. This might be less ovious when a large part of that context is hidden (e.g. the Mechanists might have a very different development process that they arrive at robots but not guns) but martial arts are directly linked to biomechanics and other things which cannot be hidden easily.

    The so-called cat gutter for instance existed when there were almost no competing one handed swords in the same military context (left aside that they don't show up in fencing books so their role aside from the battlefield was probably limited). That means they aren't short swords but normal swords, like the Roman gladius wasn't a short sword (albeit shorter than later swords) in it's military context but THE usual sword used for stabbing in a tight formation. ZylonBane didn't get this the last time he took part in the discussion but snide remarks don't always compensate for factual knowledge.

    To come back to Thief, the idea of a short sword works only inside the game world (because, even if a slightly (!) shorter sword doesn't mean less fighting power with the appropriate skill, the so-called benefits in comparison to a normal sword are negligible). However, most people explain it with pseudo-historical/realistic arguments which would be fine if it worked but turns out to be merely fallacy when thought about carefully.

    And this doesn't even touch the delusions brought forth by people saying that the (TDS) dagger is (not only in ingame implementation) more a sole killing weapon than a sword. This ignores the proximity of a dagger to a knife (which is mostly a tool) and that a sword in only an offensive weapon designed to kill or injure living things. There is no point in using it purely defensively (because the guy is still there) and used as a tool to bash doors or icicles it receives too much damage sooner or later.

  2. #927
    So basically what you're saying is it's pointless to have a shortsword for realism reasons, and it'd just make better sense to have a regular sword. I guess that's fine, but I don't see why it's such a big deal within a game context, imo. Perhaps a disclaimer should be put in the game to explain what you basically just said in order to avoid misunderstanding.

  3. #928
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Deutschland
    ...or I could just put a big IT'S NOT AS SIMPLE AS YOU MIGHT THINK sticker on it. The short version would be "If you think a short sword is the thievy version of a normal sword, be aware that this is purely fantasy/gameplay-related thinking." That's not even touching the issue of whether or not a sword is fit for a thief at all. Because of that I recommended an option to choose dagger and/or sword after the briefing but with (gameplay-wise bearable) all consequences. An Oakeshott Type XIV might be a compromise since it's a little (!) shorter than previous sword types. But the article already reveals that there's a military context to it, not just the idea of making it shorter to save weight or gain speed or something.

  4. #929
    jtr7
    Guest
    All that matters is that it's a simple tool for a bunch of tasks. Want real swords in games? Make a game about historical accuracy. There are too many factors in that universe and its history, and tech and creatures, magic and alchemy, physics and phenomena, and different levels of power and authority types, all shaping what fictional people want from a weapon or tool, that are normal for that world, yet do not exist but in the imagination, development materials, and virtual simulation in this real world. I don't care what the hell you call the heavy cutting tool, and it doesn't need so much detail, but the gameplay is the priority.

  5. #930
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Beleg Cúthalion View Post
    The so-called cat gutter for instance existed when there were almost no competing one handed swords in the same military context...
    Whaaaa? The Landsknechts fielded a variety of swords, and I can't imagine that they couldn't have gotten some form of arming sword or whatever you're thinking if they'd wanted to. They chose the cut-gutter as the usual sidearm to a pike. Why, you'll have to take up with them, or the various other pike groups that adopted similar weapons.

    But Garrett isn't really in a military context and certainly doesn't carry a pike. In a civilian context, short swords migrated out to city life here and there, presumably more as a stylistic element than a weapon. I doubt that weight was a serious issue (indeed short swords are typically very similar in weight to their longer one-handed brethren, albeit usually very different in balance, designed more for stabbing than swinging), but length certainly could be, moreso if you're doing a lot of crouching...

    Quote Originally Posted by Beleg Cúthalion View Post
    ...used as a tool to bash doors or icicles it receives too much damage sooner or later.
    Short swords survived as tools long after their retirement as weapons.

  6. #931
    jtr7
    Guest
    And again, we don't know the extent of the forging tech and alchemy and magic imbibing of that universe, and cannot discount it. Nor can we dismiss the fact Garrett's sword is more for defense should he be seen or heard and get caught, and as a non-combat tool, than anything else. This isn't Dark Camelot.

    I can forgive limited animations, but otherwise still see the weight and hardness of the blade sufficient to batter at icicles and bashing at wooden barriers such as doors and planks, even if it was more preferable to animate the action as using the pommel and the having the pommel forged with such actions in mind, even if it wasn't the great ideal.
    Last edited by jtr7; 8th Aug 2011 at 20:22.

  7. #932
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Deutschland
    I'm aware of the gameplay thing, that's why my criticism was merely against presenting arguments from reality (or Hollywood) to justify certain gameplay elements which are a priori non-realistic. However, the main gameplay direction in Thief IMHO is realistic. I have to do (and am given the possibilities and ways to do) what I would do in reality, that is hide, wait for people (who behave like real people) to pass by and anticipate their actions, whether AI-controlled (he will go where a sound was) or pre-designed in the level (he will have stored his sceptre in a secure place). It's not like Deus Ex where stealth means becoming invisible (which might have a reality on its own), but is much more down-to-earth. And this includes the tools that I use. Now of course you can do a cut and assume that no player will question the functionality of a rope arrow or sword used as a machete (although he used his own experience from reality to understand that his sword is a weapon to kill and that arrows fly away when shot from a bow), but strictly speaking this is departing from the way things were handled before.
    Quote Originally Posted by Pyrian View Post
    Whaaaa? The Landsknechts fielded a variety of swords, and I can't imagine that they couldn't have gotten some form of arming sword or whatever you're thinking if they'd wanted to. They chose the cut-gutter as the usual sidearm to a pike. Why, you'll have to take up with them, or the various other pike groups that adopted similar weapons.
    I've only seen Landsknechte with long two-handed swords, pikes, cat-gutters and firearms. In this case the cat-gutter is THE one-handed sword, no short sword, since the same military context lacks one-handed swords of different size. That is, as far as I know, but "imagination" isn't enough to prove otherwise. And even if, this does by no means change the fact that swords were probably not shortened for the RPG reasons I listed above.
    But Garrett isn't really in a military context and certainly doesn't carry a pike. In a civilian context, short swords migrated out to city life here and there, presumably more as a stylistic element than a weapon.
    Of course Garrett is in a military context. He's surrounded by guards wearing swords which somehow correspond to their armour or that of expected enemies (e.g. rhombical blade profiles when piercing through armour was important, or less tapered blades with longer grooves when cutting is more important etc.). In this case, if Garrett's sword is supposed to kill guards if necessary, it has to be adjusted according to the context. Even if swords are stylistically-designed (that's by the way why Oakeshott used only the blades for his typology), they have to fit their context or won't help in it.
    I doubt that weight was a serious issue (indeed short swords are typically very similar in weight to their longer one-handed brethren, albeit usually very different in balance, designed more for stabbing than swinging), but length certainly could be, moreso if you're doing a lot of crouching...
    I agree with the weight, partly with the blade design (since this is propbably a bit more complex) but not with the length. When you have shortened a blade so that crouching gets better significantly, it should already be too short to do anything reasonably. That's why I'm with the pro-dagger faction when it comes to Garrett's typical work. Plus, a quiver or bow is even more cumbersome, just in case you've never tried to crouch in arms. If I had to break into some place, I wouldn't bring any weapon but a dagger perhaps.
    Short swords survived as tools long after their retirement as weapons.
    Erm...which? Larger hunting knives? Cutlasses or falchions? They have blades broad enough for chopping wood but that put them far away from the idea of a thievy short sword. Others don't come to my mind right now, especially if they're supposed to be serious fencing weapons at the same time.

  8. #933
    New Member
    Registered: Jun 2011
    this might be too silly, but since we are discussing swords for Thief, what about some sort of "retractable sword?. We don't know all the tech they have in the Thief universe, maybe they could invent some nice retractable sword

    But it probably would be too unrealistic and kind of annoying unless done quite well

  9. #934
    jtr7
    Guest
    Keep it simple and useful. A hacking, bashing, cutting tool that serves as an aid in escaping. Nothing fancy, nothing gadget-y or gizmo-y about it.

  10. #935
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Deutschland
    Voilà:

  11. #936
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Beleg Cúthalion View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Pyrian View Post
    Short swords survived as tools long after their retirement as weapons.
    ...don't come to my mind right now, especially if they're supposed to be serious fencing weapons at the same time.
    "...after their retirement as weapons."

    "...they're supposed to be serious fencing weapons..."

    I'm done attempting to have a conversation with you.

  12. #937
    jtr7
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Beleg Cúthalion View Post
    Voilà:
    Needs a tweak for slicing and better stabbing/jabbing/poking (not just through armor and carotids), and with more reach, without becoming two separate tools, or needing crouching, leaning, or jumping to make up for shortness.


    Also, Thief's not a reality simulator. Also, using a blade or bow'n'arrow in Thief is preceded by other video games, not the reality of other entertainment media, let alone reality of years of training and exercises with real weapons and a real physical , and is not even a simulator of pop culture, but game animation and button mashing and maneuvering with stick or mouse or more buttons without exertion above the elbows. The interface, reliability, predictability under the game's own rules, and what is reasonably expected of controls and animations that do not even have a relationship with real weapons, real visual perception, real auditory range and uncapped dynamism, and real tactile information, but must be quickly understood for what it is, what button or stick does what, and not require any training outside of gaming. No matter how accurate or inaccurate it is, all one needs to know is pushing the button provides this set of basic results for winning or losing a game's mostly-inaccurate scenario.
    Last edited by jtr7; 9th Aug 2011 at 22:10.

  13. #938
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Deutschland
    Quote Originally Posted by Pyrian View Post
    "...after their retirement as weapons."
    "...they're supposed to be serious fencing weapons..."
    I'm done attempting to have a conversation with you.
    What's the point then in bringing in these swords-that-were as tools as an argument? If they are "retired", they are no swords in the original sense, which was however what we were talking about.

    jtr7, but you did read what I wrote about Thief's approach to gameplay...? I'm aware of the case of ingame logic but there's a difference between starting from reality as a guideline or dropping reality altogether to just rely on ingame logic from the start. But that's IMHO not what was done in Thief, else we would probably have an invisibility cloak or glyph or something. Still, the Keeper Training tells us to behave like real humans would, even though it is transfered to gameplay mechanics. What you describe is maybe the end result but not the approach taken by developers – and what you should do when considering new elements or re-thinking old ones. Otherwise you're basing new gameplay element(concept)s on old gameplay element(concept)s while the latter are already deviant from reality. Reality is however what most people employ to understand a game, especially when the element doesn't have a gaming history/reality on its own.

    The Thief community now has always been aware of those few computer game clichés that get confered from one game on the other, like Garrett's endlessly big inventory or the ability to hide his weapons completely with pressing a single key. By declaring that "Thief is no reality simulator" you're IMHO not only neglecting the influence of reality on its gameplay (see above) but also the awareness of a lot of players considering the existing gaps between reality and gameplay elements.

  14. #939
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2008
    Location: Slovakia - Zemplín region
    As for the sword/dagger debate : Make it optional for the player. LGS didn't punish you if you bought a virtually useless slow-fall potion or a few extra arrows for a mission that didn't really require them. Don't give the player everything at once, force him to do some rationing - but give him freedom. If he wants to show off with a sword, let him. The guards will bust him anyway, if he tries to slash his way through (I do hope the devs realize the necessity of this in a stealth game).

    As for the actual topic of this thread, I have a single question : Does Eidos Monty have a proper dev diary for Thief IV ? Are they planning one ? I do hope so. I'd love to see it. What we're doing here is just vivid, but silly speculation over a single blurry screenshot (all I can recognize are city streets, a guard with a sword in the distance and something resembling a hooded figure with its hands hacked off ). I want to see them actually doing a few updates from time to time, so anyone interested in the new title could actually rely on evidence of progress instead of endless rumours.

    Hey, and if all else fails, we could still persuade them to do a Thief Kart game.

  15. #940
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2009
    Location: 22 Jump Street: Jump Harder
    Meh, haven't been around much. just been busy, and... Well... Busy!

    A buddy of mine nearly chewed my ear off; proclaiming how much he liked HR. And if alot of people commended the games stealth system just fine, then I'm actually more confident about Thiaf being good than being a complete pile of crap like I believed TDS to be...

    Then again, I'm just especially picky in what a game throws at me. Gameplay-wise, TDS was bland, with poor controls and a lack of large environments. Storywise, well, I gave up playing the game because I couldn't stand the voice actors; they actually achieved making me want to watch Arnold schwarzenegger, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Tommy wiseau duke it out in a game of "Who can butcher a play by shakespeare?"

    Graphics is the same complaint as everyone else. Ugly character models, ugly color palette (Blue on blue gets old quickly. And I love blue mind you!) and lord, it wasn't helped by the architecture. I thought I was walking through some college students long-overhauled tech demo, where he didn't give a care about detail in the environments...

    OK, so I've made this a complete rant against TDS than discussing Thiaf. Why? Because I don't think any of those problems will appear in this game. If they do, then it proves a nagging theory of mine that game developers don't play video games accept for what the industry throws at them currently.

    So, I for one am willing to accept EM as my lord and saviour. But I'm obviously bitter about *Fill-in-the-blank*...

    Y'know!
    Last edited by Albert; 28th Sep 2011 at 09:57.

  16. #941
    Member
    Registered: May 2002
    Location: Romania
    Feerick, one of the concept artists, dressed in a Mocam suit for Thief 4


  17. #942
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Nottingham, England
    Mmm, sexy.

    Also, if you zoom in closely, adjust the contrast and squint, you can see that on one of the computer screens there's a picture which shows that Thief 4 will be exclusively in third person with a new scantily clad female character and will be called "Thiaf: Creed of the Assassins".

  18. #943
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2004
    Location: The City
    Quote Originally Posted by Blue Sky View Post
    Mmm, sexy.

    Also, if you zoom in closely, adjust the contrast and squint, you can see that on one of the computer screens there's a picture which shows that Thief 4 will be exclusively in third person with a new scantily clad female character and will be called "Thiaf: Creed of the Assassins".
    no, that's wrong. When i zoom closer, I see me.

  19. #944
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: cesspool
    Quote Originally Posted by Dominus View Post
    Mocam suit

    motion camera suit? Some similar technique to mocap?

  20. #945
    Clearinghouse
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Siberia, Russia
    From one current Ken Levine project to another series that he helped create back in the day, Thief 4 was announced in May 2009. Just recently, I traveled to Eidos Montreal and got to check out... a Thief 4 sign post. That’s right, in the past two and a half years, the development of this game has been just as silent as the series’ stealth gameplay encourages. Just as fittingly, it seems as if this franchise’s fourth game has been rumored since the Middle Ages. We haven’t had a Thief title since Deadly Shadows in 2004. That’s the original Xbox era.
    The good news is that Thief 4 production has been “ramped up”, as the Deus Ex: Human Revolution is now complete. The originality of the non-confrontational Thief games alone casts us as intrigued and the success that Eidos Montreal had with its first game (that game being Deus Ex: HR), makes us fairly confident that Looking Glass Studios’ former creation was snatched up by the right set of developers.
    http://www.g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/pos...aider-and-more
    Last edited by clearing; 18th Oct 2011 at 23:34.

  21. #946
    Thanks for the heads up clearing

  22. #947
    Taking a break
    Registered: Dec 2002
    "The original XBOX era"

    Wow. We're like, dinosaurs.

  23. #948
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2009
    Location: 22 Jump Street: Jump Harder
    We could only hope for the best. Though it seems we'll have to wait for a more cohesive piece of game development evidence, before we can rationalize the ideas of it either blowing chunks, or it being the game that TDS never was... 3rd-person though feels like an instant turnoff to me, though.

    I am only hoping that third person will be used in an action-context, like using the bow or a device or something. Still, my speculation is rather late. Let's just chill for a bit 'till some actual gameplay footage is out.

  24. #949
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2006
    Location: Deutschland
    The only action-related 3rd person camera that I'd consider justified would be Garrett rubbing his back. Or knead his shoulders at the right location when they get tense from all the brick wall climbing.

  25. #950
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2006
    Location: USA
    Thanks clearing.

    Haha, Koki, good point. The article used that term as naturally as we'd use "the bronze age".

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