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Thread: Warren Spector on Human Revolution: "I screamed at the television as I played"

  1. #26
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Quote Originally Posted by henke View Post
    I felt like the shortcomings of IW and DS were mostly because of the constraints of the engine they both used, not so much the design choices they went with.
    Yeah... no. The terrible engine can only take some of the blame. Both IW and DS are awash in awful design decisions. Loot glint, anyone? Universal ammo? The idiotic "Coffee Wars"?

    Seriously, fuck Coffee Wars. I was honestly surprised that there wasn't a coffee shop somewhere on Liberty Island.

  2. #27
    Knows his stuff
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Loot glint and universal ammo didn't bother me in the least. Nor did arrow trails or blue shadows or third person view. I did miss swimming though, and rope arrows. Coffee Wars? I don't think I did that sidequest in either of my 2 playthroughs.

  3. #28
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2005
    Location: Sona-Nyl
    So... in general people were OK with how the Keeper Assassins would go on a rampage because everybody could see them ?

    Just thought someone should point that particular absurdity out.

  4. #29
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2009
    Quote Originally Posted by Koki View Post
    It's not just Invisible War, it was also Deadly Shadows. Both horribly shallow reimaginations of the original games.
    I no longer dislike you. : D

  5. #30
    Knows his stuff
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Quote Originally Posted by Emerald Wolf View Post
    So... in general people were OK with how the Keeper Assassins would go on a rampage because everybody could see them ?
    I must have repressed that memory. Yeah the Keeper Assassins were terrible. Especially if you had played the Equilibrium FM for T2 beforehand which portrayed them as near-invisible silent assassins. Encountering them in TDS and finding out that they basically just were the same AI as all the other guards was a big disappointment.

  6. #31
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2001
    Quote Originally Posted by Kuuso View Post
    Exactly this. The engine coupled with the limitations of the original Xbox put some shit restrictions on the games - the small levels for example. It hurt Thief quite a lot with all the loading etc. No way a shalllow reimagining of the original though, I think it's story is on par with the first two or even above at points. That alone warrants it's place in the Thief canon.
    I wouldn't call any iteration of the unreal engines limited though, they've always been the most flexible alternatives.

    Unreal engine 2 and 2.5 has probably been used more than unreal engine 3, and for nearly any kind of game.

    If anything the hardware can limit things, but not gameplay. Deus ex for the ps2 was quite split up in levels, but the gameplay and story remained intact otherwise, did it not?

  7. #32
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Moyer View Post
    My favorite part of DXIW was the cynical "we're using a hologram of Britney Spears as a civilian surveillance tool" thing. That and the coffee wars were brilliant, I thought.
    Good ideas are a dime a dozen. The ideas of NG Resonance or the coffee shop war were nothing extraordinary. A 13 years old can easily come up with those kind of "brilliant" ideas. What really matters is what you do with those ideas, it is how you implement them.

    In the case of NG Resonance, here's a quote :

    NG Resonance: Hi. I'm NG Resonance. What would you like to talk about?
    Alex D: I like your music.
    NG Resonance: I think you're lying.
    Alex D: Hey — I'm a fan. You're not supposed to argue with me.
    NG Resonance: I'm supposed to make you like me. You like it when I argue.

    That's good writing. That kind of thing has value.

    As for the Coffee Shop War, sorry, but everything about it was lame. It was completely shallow, there was no development at all, it was just a vague idea. The worst part is that "brilliant" idea is a common practice among big corporations. I agree it could still have been a basis for something good, but what was created from this vague idea was absolutely worthless.

  8. #33
    Cuddly little misanthropic hate machine
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Location: 4 doors down, bad side of town
    Quote Originally Posted by Papy View Post
    Good ideas are a dime a dozen. The ideas of NG Resonance or the coffee shop war were nothing extraordinary. A 13 years old can easily come up with those kind of "brilliant" ideas. What really matters is what you do with those ideas, it is how you implement them.
    This paragraph is gibbering nonsense. If good ideas are so common then why aren't more people having them?

  9. #34
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    You say that in a Internet forum? You know... The kind of places where everyone talk about all their brilliant ideas?

  10. #35
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2008
    Wait wait wait, what forum have YOU been reading?

  11. #36
    Knows his stuff
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Quote Originally Posted by dethtoll View Post
    This paragraph is gibbering nonsense. If good ideas are so common then why aren't more people having them?
    I think lots of people are having great ideas, it's just that most people don't have the means or the ambition to see them through.

  12. #37
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2007
    Location: Alberta, Canada
    I found it really easy to get behind NG Resonance. I love the idea that in the future everybody is listening to the Kidneythieves rather than Rihanna, Chris Brown and fucking dubstep.

  13. #38
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Quote Originally Posted by henke View Post
    Loot glint and universal ammo didn't bother me in the least. Nor did arrow trails or blue shadows or third person view.
    You DO realize you're in the overwhelming minority on these issues, yes?

    I don't think I did that sidequest in either of my 2 playthroughs.
    Wow. Just... wow. Queequeg's Coffee doesn't ring a bell? Pequod's?

    And yeesh, that right there just highlights how far up their own asses the IW team was. They were patting their own backs so hard for jamming a litery reference into the game that it apparently never occurred to anyone that those are both fucking terrible names for any kind of business.

  14. #39
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: Yangon, Burma
    Quote Originally Posted by Eldron View Post
    I wouldn't call any iteration of the unreal engines limited though, they've always been the most flexible alternatives.

    Unreal engine 2 and 2.5 has probably been used more than unreal engine 3, and for nearly any kind of game.

    If anything the hardware can limit things, but not gameplay. Deus ex for the ps2 was quite split up in levels, but the gameplay and story remained intact otherwise, did it not?
    One of the TDS devs (Krypt) confessed to us that somebody internally re-wrote the engine basically on his own initiative, IIRC to get the dynamic shadows in, and they got themselves committed to it before everyone realized what a crack job he'd done and it gave them tech woes from then on, through DXIW and TDS, and it was a constant battle just to get it to do what they wanted. It gives you the impression that Harvey wasn't in total control of his shop and things started spinning out.

  15. #40
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Quote Originally Posted by demagogue View Post
    ...what a crap job he'd done...
    Fixed. "Crack" as an adjective means excellent.

    Also, the guy who re-wrote the renderer quit or was fired midway through the project.

  16. #41
    Knows his stuff
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane View Post
    You DO realize you're in the overwhelming minority on these issues, yes?
    On TTLG, perhaps. Among gamers in general? I don't think so.

  17. #42
    Member
    Registered: Jun 1999
    Location: Procrastination, Australia
    Quote Originally Posted by demagogue View Post
    One of the TDS devs (Krypt) confessed to us that somebody internally re-wrote the engine basically on his own initiative, IIRC to get the dynamic shadows in, and they got themselves committed to it before everyone realized what a crack job he'd done and it gave them tech woes from then on, through DXIW and TDS, and it was a constant battle just to get it to do what they wanted. It gives you the impression that Harvey wasn't in total control of his shop and things started spinning out.
    As ZB said, they reportedly fired the guy not too long after, leaving them with no support for the half rewritten engine at all. That can't have sped things up. Doesn't seem like the most sensible move.
    The part that always baffles me (and I go on about it lots) is the old demo videos an screenshots of much larger spaces, all with the dynamic shadow engine. Even with a high powered development PC, how could they not notice? The thing can barely pull 20fps at 640x480 in the finished game on release. Development is complicated with lots of details we don't know, but that is pretty bizarre.
    There were other oddities people noticed as well, like apparently it would load all the dialogue in a given level into RAM every time. All of it! Say what you will about IW, it's certainly chatty. Even with low sample rate mp3s that's going to mount up in a game like that.
    It's part of why even now I can fire up Red Faction Guerrilla, start a game and can have driven down the road a little in the time it takes to load up Invisible War on the same machine. One seeks to show me a couple of alleyways or two small floors of a building; the other a suburb of Mars.

  18. #43
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Muzman View Post
    Even with a high powered development PC, how could they not notice?
    It could have been a case of "we got it working and it looks sweet! We'll optimize it as we go." But of course, by the time they realized it can't be optimized any further (not without Carmack on team or rewriting half the engine again) they already had so much content built for it there was no real way of turning back.

  19. #44
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Quote Originally Posted by Muzman View Post
    There were other oddities people noticed as well, like apparently it would load all the dialogue in a given level into RAM every time. All of it!
    If true, most likely due to the XBox. Gotta cache everything so Joe Couchgamer doesn't have to wait for the DVD to spin up during conversations.

  20. #45
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: Yangon, Burma
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane View Post
    Fixed. "Crack" as an adjective means excellent.

    Also, the guy who re-wrote the renderer quit or was fired midway through the project.
    Bluh, I had the term crackpot in my mind, since IIRC that's the kind of impression that post gave me about him. But I did remember that he was let go afterwards. I can't imagine going rogue is a good way of endearing yourself to a team effort. And IIRC deadline pressure was also a factor once they got much farther along in the process and the tech woes were getting apparent.

  21. #46
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Did Deadly Shadows really pioneer loot glint? 'Cause it's all over the place nowadays. Just a trailblazer of a game, I guess.

    The jail level idea was fantastic - just the notion that the first time the guards caught you, they'd haul you off to the paddock and you have to break out. Without it being enforced in any way.

    I've never understood what all the fuss is about mana points universal ammo.

    Coffee Wars, while rather banal (and how many RPG's don't have banal sidequests?), was totally worthwhile solely for how much it annoys ZylonBane.

    I'd've been fine with the optional third person and even approved of the body-awareness if it hadn't somehow been coupled with making the controls all screwy. Given that such things have been implemented just fine in other games without that issue, I think the control issues are much more relevant than the optional third person. It's also much more "optional" than in DX:HR!

  22. #47
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    Quote Originally Posted by Pyrian View Post
    I've never understood what all the fuss is about mana points universal ammo.
    Then you must be exceptionally dim, because the "fuss" with universal ammo has been explained over and over and over, continuously, since the game's release.

  23. #48
    Knows his stuff
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    It probably has been explained but I can't say I remember the explanation either.

    The universal ammo didn't have an impact on how I played the game so I didn't think about it. If someone is going to write a long post on a forum explaining why it's so terrible, chances are I won't pay much attention to it. I don't need to know why the thing I've been enjoying is terrible to someone else.

  24. #49
    Cuddly little misanthropic hate machine
    Registered: Aug 2004
    Location: 4 doors down, bad side of town
    oh come on henke work with us here!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Papy View Post
    I must admit I lack the culture to understand that.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=etjv_CM3Iu4

  25. #50
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2002
    Location: LTSI
    Quote Originally Posted by henke View Post
    I don't need to know why the thing I've been enjoying is terrible to someone else.

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