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Thread: Thief Gold vs. Thief 2

  1. #1
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019

    Thief Gold vs. Thief 2

    Not trying to start a fight or anything, but I've noticed in other discussions elsewhere on the internet, that there seems to be some disagreement on which is the superior title and obviously it is a matter of personal preference.

    First of all: I love all the original Thief games and I am fully aware of the debt of gratitude all other stealth games owe to The Dark Project. That being said, however, I just replayed Thief Gold (on normal) and once I was done, I found myself in a weird place. I wanted to play more, but I didn't want to play it again. To explain what I mean:
    Upon completion, I looked at my list of savegames and realised that there are barely any missions in Thief Gold I had any desire to play again. I forced myself to, because I was too lazy to install another game, but... it's strange. Thief Gold is certainly not as good as I remember it to be. And my memories of it aren't that old either, because when it first came out (I remember playing the demo and being blown away by the concept), I was so scared of the undead, I didn't actually make it past the second level until several years later. I couldn't do it, not even during daytime and with company. I can do it now, because I've learned how to deal with the undead, but I still don't enjoy those levels. I think this is the main reason why I prefer Thief 2 - no Zombies (almost).

    Now, when looking at the list of missions in my savegames, I noticed two things especially.
    1: Thief Gold is scarier than Thief 2. I don't just mean the zombies and haunted levels, I mean - overall. I find the first mission scary. I think this is probably because of the ambient sound, the suspenseful music playing all the way through the level? Not sure, I can't pin it down.
    2: There are so many levels I just simply don't enjoy. Mostly, because of level design. Worst offenders are the levels added by Thief Gold, obviously. I find them just too large (The Guild), too repetitive (Mage Towers). These are probably the worst two, but I didn't enjoy Song of the Caverns, Bonehoard either. And then there are many levels where you don't get to do any actual thieving. Escape, Strange Bedfellows, Maw of Chaos - not terrible, but it's not Thief to me. You can't even buy equipment, so it's a bit silly that you can collect loot in these levels. What for, you never get to spend it.
    The Sword and Undercover are the only two missions I would even consider good. Bafford's is okay, I'm of two minds about that one. I just replayed it and ghosted it for the first time (no alarms, no blackjacking, 100% loot, I guess that counts as ghosting?), that was kinda fun, so I might add this to the list. But the rest... I don't know. It's more of a chore. Return to the Cathedral is okay - once you know the shortcut to circumventing the second half of the level (yay, fetch quests!).

    If I had to pick the top 5 levels in Thief Gold and Thief 2, they would all be Thief 2 levels (Party, Bank, Eavesdropping, Framed and either one of the Gervasius-missions (except I don't like the scary library sub-quest)). Undercover would probably be my highest-rated Thief 1 level, but it's also pitifully easy on Expert.

    And then I realised something else... a pattern that seems to be true for me across all games. At least in stealth games. I enjoy it, as long as you're dealing with humans, but once it's about monsters, I stop enjoying the game. I looked back and realised that I felt exactly the same in Farcry, Crysis, Crysis 2, Thief Gold and even Thief 2 (final level has almost no humanoids in it). I don't play many modern games, so there are probably more games where this is true, Crysis 2 probably being the latest game I have played to this day.
    Now I'm wondering... do others feel the same way? I mean... about the part of games where you're stealthy and deal with human enemies and then the part where the monsters show up and the game basically loses its stealth element?

  2. #2
    ZylonBane
    Registered: Sep 2000
    Location: ZylonBane
    If you think Thief loses its stealth element when monsters show up, you're a bad thief. And a dumb thief. There should be a new, stronger word for the kind of thief you are, like "dumbad" or "badumb". Yes, this kind of thief is badumb. From this moment, I will stand for the opposite of that... "bmudab."

  3. #3
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by ZylonBane View Post
    If you think Thief loses its stealth element when monsters show up, you're a bad thief. And a dumb thief. There should be a new, stronger word for the kind of thief you are, like "dumbad" or "badumb". Yes, this kind of thief is badumb. From this moment, I will stand for the opposite of that... "bmudab."
    Oh, wow. I was expecting just about any kind of response, but not just blatent abuse from some guy I don't know. Thanks for that, hope you're real proud of yourself for that.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    Lol never mind ZB, that's just his way of saying "welcome to the forum".

    Although I largely disagree with your opinion, thank you for sharing. And even though this discussion is old and never ending, I haven't seen a comprehensive statement like yours in a while. Refreshing.

    For me, several points heavily favor Thief Gold (I can't comment on TDP, because I never finished that release). First (and perhaps most importantly), nostalgia. This was the first game I played, and it blew me away. It will always trigger in me certain emotions, where I remember back to my first time getting caught by the dark, grimy atmosphere of The City. No video game has ever grabbed me in the same way since.

    Second, level design. Yes, I'm using your argument against you. Quite frankly, I don't see how you use level design to argue for Thief 2. A few missions in that game are inventive yes, (Party, Cargo, Kidnap, Soulforge) but many of the others are very plain to me. The streets and houses seem unimaginative, some of them straight out boring. Much of the level design in Thief 2 is also very flat, where verticality is hardly even implemented. It almost becomes 2D maps. Compare that to levels like Cragscleft, Bonehoard, The Sword, Caverns, Mage Towers, even The Maw (although that's one of my least favorite in TG). They all use 3D level design in very clever ways. Also, the settings for the different missions in Thief Gold is so much more unpredictable. When you head into mines, caves, tombs, lost civilizations, ruined cities, everything becomes so uncertain. This coupled with the varied types of enemies (not just humans) in turn takes away a lot of the player's control, which makes it more unsettling and more tense. Once you put the player in the middle of nothing but man made buildings, with only human guards, noblemen, servants, etc, it becomes very dull very quickly to me. I feel in total control because I know what to expect, which takes away tension and removes the immersion.

    Third, sound design. The use of sounds is on another level entirely in Thief 1. And seeing that this is one of the most important aspects of the Thief experience, it heavily favors the first installment in the series. The Sword is the pinnacle of sound design for me, with Song of the Caverns a close second. To compare to your top 5 list, only 2 missions from Thief 2 would make mine, Party and the Bank. And in a Top 10 from both games combined, 7 out of 10 would be from Thief Gold (Soulforge would sneak in 10th).

    Again, I really appreciate your post. Although it's an old discussion, I never get tired of it. I hope others will chime in.
    Klatremus' Supreme Thief Site - Walkthroughs, Loot Lists & Ghost Reports
    Let's Supreme Ghost Thief - YouTube Channel with Thief Let's Plays

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2017
    Location: France
    LOL. Well, at least the first part of his statement isn't wrong (if a bit tactless in presentation).

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: May 2004

  7. #7
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by klatremus View Post
    Lol never mind ZB, that's just his way of saying "welcome to the forum".

    Although I largely disagree with your opinion, thank you for sharing. And even though this discussion is old and never ending, I haven't seen a comprehensive statement like yours in a while. Refreshing.

    For me, several points heavily favor Thief Gold (I can't comment on TDP, because I never finished that release). First (and perhaps most importantly), nostalgia. This was the first game I played, and it blew me away. It will always trigger in me certain emotions, where I remember back to my first time getting caught by the dark, grimy atmosphere of The City. No video game has ever grabbed me in the same way since.

    Second, level design. Yes, I'm using your argument against you. Quite frankly, I don't see how you use level design to argue for Thief 2. A few missions in that game are inventive yes, (Party, Cargo, Kidnap, Soulforge) but many of the others are very plain to me. The streets and houses seem unimaginative, some of them straight out boring. Much of the level design in Thief 2 is also very flat, where verticality is hardly even implemented. It almost becomes 2D maps. Compare that to levels like Cragscleft, Bonehoard, The Sword, Caverns, Mage Towers, even The Maw (although that's one of my least favorite in TG). They all use 3D level design in very clever ways. Also, the settings for the different missions in Thief Gold is so much more unpredictable. When you head into mines, caves, tombs, lost civilizations, ruined cities, everything becomes so uncertain. This coupled with the varied types of enemies (not just humans) in turn takes away a lot of the player's control, which makes it more unsettling and more tense. Once you put the player in the middle of nothing but man made buildings, with only human guards, noblemen, servants, etc, it becomes very dull very quickly to me. I feel in total control because I know what to expect, which takes away tension and removes the immersion.

    Third, sound design. The use of sounds is on another level entirely in Thief 1. And seeing that this is one of the most important aspects of the Thief experience, it heavily favors the first installment in the series. The Sword is the pinnacle of sound design for me, with Song of the Caverns a close second. To compare to your top 5 list, only 2 missions from Thief 2 would make mine, Party and the Bank. And in a Top 10 from both games combined, 7 out of 10 would be from Thief Gold (Soulforge would sneak in 10th).

    Again, I really appreciate your post. Although it's an old discussion, I never get tired of it. I hope others will chime in.
    Thanks I feel really welcome then

    It's interesting how the very same things can be received so differently. I guess we are in agreement to a certain extent, though, for example in that Party is and excellent level and (I assume you agree with me here, since you didn't mention those levels) that Guild and Mage Towers are bad levels.

    I have never considered it from that perspective, I mean the levels being truly 3D vs on a plane. Cragscleft is far more threedimensional than Party, but Cargo is pretty vertical, too, I think.

    I think the core of our disagreement lies in what we want from a game or our individual needs. I love/crave control. In T2 you are the undisputed master of your environment. You feel secure most of the time, because you know what you're doing and who/what you're up against and while you may be stressed at times (stumbling onto a metal beast or so unexpectedly), you're hardly ever scared in T2. You seem to enjoy immersion, even the horror aspects of the game more. So basically the very things that put me off TG are what you enjoy about it.

    You mentioned your top 10... would you name them? I'd like to know how highly Party ranks for you.


    RE: The last part of TG not being stealthy: I think I may have phrased this poorly. And my statement was based on the Crytek titles more so than on TG. In those games you come up learning how to sneak, how to headshot / necksnap human enemies from behind and then suddenly some kind of monsters show up and it just degenerates into a shoot-em-up game. I dislike that in all those games.
    Obviously this is not exactly true for the Thief games, but to give my examples here:
    T2, Soulforge: How exactly does it benefit to be stealthy here? You're much better off running around and getting stuff done. Raising the alarm will do nothing to make things harder, just about the only place where you may want to sneak is the room with all the nasty spiderbots.
    T1, Escape: You get zero incentive to sneak in this level. Just run to the exit - who cares? It's also much easier to run to the exit, you can pick up the book on the way through.
    T1, Maw: Even worse! Why would you do anything else than just run through the level? There is no reason to gather items or knock out opponents. Why would you even try to fight the marching chaos beasts? Just run, run, run, run until you get to the trickster.
    T1, SB: worst offender! In this one, if you just run through it, you don't get that nasty sidequest to kill all of the bugsies. At least that's how it seemed to me.

    To me the charm of Thief is to take your time, explore the level, maximise your loot and find secrets. This is ruinied in the above-mentioned levels by loot being irrelevant. If the goal of the mission is to get to X, then you just get there as efficiently as possible. And in the case of those beasty-levels, that means just running there. To me, at least.

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Moscow, Russia
    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha View Post
    T1, Maw: Even worse! Why would you do anything else than just run through the level? There is no reason to gather items or knock out opponents. Why would you even try to fight the marching chaos beasts? Just run, run, run, run until you get to the trickster.
    In TG Training there is an Easter Egg with developers quotes. I think this one answers your question completely.

    Tim: "We want the endgame to be the climax of the mission. And you can't sustain a climax for 45 minutes. At least I can't."

  9. #9
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by Sneaksie View Post
    In TG Training there is an Easter Egg with developers quotes. I think this one answers your question completely.

    Tim: "We want the endgame to be the climax of the mission. And you can't sustain a climax for 45 minutes. At least I can't."
    It's pretty close to 45min, considerin how long and how slowly Constantine prances about at the end...

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by klatremus View Post
    ...
    First (and perhaps most importantly), nostalgia.
    ...
    Second, level design
    ...
    Funny, that I would have used those points to explain Thief 2 as the better game

    The Thief 2 demo was among the first "real" games I have played on a PC. I have played it countless of times (and I still think it is better than the Life of the Party OM in the full game). I still remember the moment I bought the full version of Thief2 (and how expensive it was) and how I played it regularly for weeks. So Thief 2 will always have that nostalgic feel for me.

    It actually took me quite a few years until I have played Thief1, and up to this date I have spent much more time playing Thief 2 than Thief 1/Gold (including FMs). The reason I enjoyed Thief 2 much more than Thief 1 is mostly the setting. I have never enjoyed scary or spooky games, so I always favored the City setting of Thief 2 compared to the crypts and tombs. While I agree with you, that Thief 1 OMs are more versatile than the Thief 2 OMs, it has never bugged me that most of the Thief 2 OMs have a similar setting/style. It's however quite interesting, that you point out how flat Thief 2 OMs compared to Thief 1 are. It never occured to me, but you are right, and I will never be able to ignore this fact from now on

    Of course all those things are heavily subjective, but that's what makes discussing this topic quite interesting.

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2019
    Location: Poland
    I generally agree with Hesha on most points, except her(him? IDK) stating that supernatural/monster adversaries supposedly take the stealth element away from the game. It's still there, and refraining from sneaking around them is only one's choice.

    Either way, i greatly prefer Thief 2 in pretty much every aspect compared to Thief 1 (and mind you, T1 is the first Thief game i ever got to play in the series, thus the "first played, first loved" nostalgia effect didn't work for me at all here).

    Sure, there's a lot more urbanised areas in Thief 2, but they're designed very well and are varied enough to be enjoyable for me (Truart's house, bank, Gervaisius mansion, Mechanist's cathedral in Eavesdropping and the warehouses in Shipping being the personal highlights). Besides i really do enjoy mansion missions and Mechanist's Art Deco aesthetics being intertwined with some more pagan/nature style quests like Trail of Blood or Kidnap. I think TMA did strike a very interesting balance there, just the right amount to me.

    The thought of "being more in control than in T1" had never crossed my mind before, which means that I either don't mind it or maybe even prefer it. IDK, i haven't made up my mind about it.

    As for the scary elements, i have very mixed feelings on them myself. Let me just say that when i played Cragscleft for the first time, around 2002, i happily and unsuspectingly strolled across the room with the second zombie, convinced that nothing scary would happen - considering the fact that the first corpse surrounded by flies did nothing. I passed the zombie, and proceeded to examine the peculiar electrical machine with arcing electrodes. Suddenly, a weird, ominous noise disturbed my ears, making me reflexively turn around only to be met with zombie's ugly mug right in my face.

    The speed i reached to ESC key at that time must have well exceeded the one of light. I was so frightened that i wasn't able to play it for days. Yet i was curious. Because this game piqued the hell of my curiosity, even despite these scary parts.

    That is why i don't call the scary/supernatural parts bad or unfitting. Nor do i think they are. I find them actually interesting, and the fact that i have difficulties with them, i only attribute to myself being too fragile and easily frightened (especially if it's an FFP game - Silent Hill was less scary to me, for example). The game does it just right.

    That being said, Thief 2 made it easier on me to advance in the game without getting unnerved too much, because the ratio of supernatural stuff wasn't as over the top. Still i would't have called it worse if it featured more of these undead parts.

    As for the sound design Klastremus mentioned - i don't see much difference between these two installments of the series. They both do the sound part very well (except when there's sudden volume spikes/muffling because of room brushing issues - thanks, Dark Engine, very cool)

    TLDR, bottom line is: played T1 first, find T2 way better and more interesting, scared of undead as hell, don't find their presence "unthiefy" or unfitting at all, nor taking away the stealth mechanics.

    PS. Welcome to the forum

    PS. 2 Zylon is a noob
    Last edited by Meowdori; 12th Feb 2020 at 12:29.

  12. #12
    New Member
    Registered: Mar 2012
    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha
    Not trying to start a fight or anything, but I've noticed in other discussions elsewhere on the internet, that there seems to be some disagreement on which is the superior title and obviously it is a matter of personal preference.
    Agreed. I don't think there is a strong consensus going either way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha
    I was so scared of the undead, I didn't actually make it past the second level until several years later. I couldn't do it, not even during daytime and with company. I can do it now, because I've learned how to deal with the undead, but I still don't enjoy those levels. I think this is the main reason why I prefer Thief 2 - no Zombies (almost).
    That was observed by Lytha many, many years ago in her TDP survey. If anyone's interested, her website is still up.
    In short, Lytha hypothesized that Undead are the primary reason why many respondents didn't like Bonehoard, Cathedral or Return AT ALL. What's more, there was a significant negative correlation between Undead and Human missions, i.e. Bafford, Assassins or Undercover.

    If you don't have much love for supernatural missions, be it Undead or Pagan ones (Bedfellows, Escape, Maw), it's quite understandable you'd rather play the sequel (no purely Undead missions and just 1 mostly Pagan level).

    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha
    1: Thief Gold is scarier than Thief 2. I don't just mean the zombies and haunted levels, I mean - overall. I find the first mission scary. I think this is probably because of the ambient sound, the suspenseful music playing all the way through the level? Not sure, I can't pin it down.
    I always thought T1 is more brooding, more solitary, more intense experience.
    Compare the Mechanists from T2 - scheming inventors, "evil scientist" types, very much like James Bond villains (with a pinch of Jules Verne) - to irreconcilable Hammerites, ready to boil your hands and suffer in the mouldy cells of Cragscleft.
    Compare stopping the vague prophecy of "Metal Age" - whatever it may be - to stealing The Eye for Pagan demi-god, only to be betrayed, mutilated and left to die.
    Or tell me, did any of T2 "superlevels" (i.e. Bank, Angelwatch, Soulforge) make you feel as lonely as the Bonehoard?
    Perhaps we underestimate that The Dark Project was, in fact, much darker game than its sequel (although it had a fair bit of thrills).

    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha
    2: There are so many levels I just simply don't enjoy. Mostly, because of level design. Worst offenders are the levels added by Thief Gold, obviously. I find them just too large (The Guild), too repetitive (Mage Towers). These are probably the worst two, but I didn't enjoy Song of the Caverns, Bonehoard either. And then there are many levels where you don't get to do any actual thieving.
    I don't think there is a common denominator for "Gold" missions. I don't like Mages Towers too much, but always found Caverns superb, while Thieves Guild... well, that one's most polarizing. Personally, it's one of my favorites in T1, it has more of that Assassins atmosphere, but is far more complicated. Don't mind it really, but some folks think it's garbage. Fair enough.
    When it comes to thieving - I think it's a matter of perspective really. Bonehoard is, like, the most EPIC thieving Garrett has done in his early days. Doing it the sneaky way is very satisfying; besides, I don't think the real Garrett would risk getting caught by burricks or running out of holy water, sticking to shadows would be his weapon. Again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha
    If I had to pick the top 5 levels in Thief Gold and Thief 2, they would all be Thief 2 levels (Party, Bank, Eavesdropping, Framed and either one of the Gervasius-missions (except I don't like the scary library sub-quest)). Undercover would probably be my highest-rated Thief 1 level, but it's also pitifully easy on Expert.
    If I had done top 10 levels from T1-T2-T3, majority would come from Thief Gold. But T2 certainly has its merits.
    My favorite OM from all games comes from The Metal Age so count me as a 'fan'.
    Last edited by page; 14th Feb 2020 at 01:34.

  13. #13
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by Meowdori View Post
    I generally agree with Hesha on most points, except her(him? IDK) stating that supernatural/monster adversaries supposedly take the stealth element away from the game. It's still there, and refraining from sneaking around them is only one's choice.

    Either way, i greatly prefer Thief 2 in pretty much every aspect compared to Thief 1 (and mind you, T1 is the first Thief game i ever got to play in the series, thus the "first played, first loved" nostalgia effect didn't work for me at all here).

    Sure, there's a lot more urbanised areas in Thief 2, but they're designed very well and are varied enough to be enjoyable for me (Truart's house, bank, Gervaisius mansion, Mechanist's cathedral in Eavesdropping and the warehouses in Shipping being the personal highlights). Besides i really do enjoy mansion missions and Mechanist's Art Deco aesthetics being intertwined with some more pagan/nature style quests like Trail of Blood or Kidnap. I think TMA did strike a very interesting balance there, just the right amount to me.

    The thought of "being more in control than in T1" had never crossed my mind before, which means that I either don't mind it or maybe even prefer it. IDK, i haven't made up my mind about it.

    As for the scary elements, i have very mixed feelings on them myself. Let me just say that when i played Cragscleft for the first time, around 2002, i happily and unsuspectingly strolled across the room with the second zombie, convinced that nothing scary would happen - considering the fact that the first corpse surrounded by flies did nothing. I passed the zombie, and proceeded to examine the peculiar electrical machine with arcing electrodes. Suddenly, a weird, ominous noise disturbed my ears, making me reflexively turn around only to be met with zombie's ugly mug right in my face.

    The speed i reached to ESC key at that time must have well exceeded the one of light. I was so frightened that i wasn't able to play it for days. Yet i was curious. Because this game piqued the hell of my curiosity, even despite these scary parts.

    That is why i don't call the scary/supernatural parts bad or unfitting. Nor do i think they are. I find them actually interesting, and the fact that i have difficulties with them, i only attribute to myself being too fragile and easily frightened (especially if it's an FFP game - Silent Hill was less scary to me, for example). The game does it just right.

    That being said, Thief 2 made it easier on me to advance in the game without getting unnerved too much, because the ratio of supernatural stuff wasn't as over the top. Still i would't have called it worse if it featured more of these undead parts.

    As for the sound design Klastremus mentioned - i don't see much difference between these two installments of the series. They both do the sound part very well (except when there's sudden volume spikes/muffling because of room brushing issues - thanks, Dark Engine, very cool)

    TLDR, bottom line is: played T1 first, find T2 way better and more interesting, scared of undead as hell, don't find their presence "unthiefy" or unfitting at all, nor taking away the stealth mechanics.

    PS. Welcome to the forum

    PS. 2 Zylon is a noob
    I basically agree with everything you just said. Even regarding the monsters making the game less stealthy. They don't, I agree. I think what makes them detract from what I like about the game is:
    a) you can kill them, you're even encouraged to do so, even (especially) on Expert
    b) the monster level are less "thievy", if that makes sense. It's more tomb raider than thief to me.
    I think it was in appropriate to mix in my Crytek comments here. It is really a different story between the two engines.

    I made a very similar experience in the mines. Only I was walking around a corner, turning my (RL) head, talking to a friend, and when I looked back to the screen I looked straight at a groaning zombie. I didn't hit ESC. I jumped backwards IRL, knocking over my office chair, screamed to loud everyone in the house could hear it and didn't touch T1 for a couple of years afterwards. So I guess the reason why we don't like the horror elements of T1 (and appreciate the lack thereof in T2) is the same

    I can handle them nowadays, but that is because I manage to dissociate. I basically stop immersing myself and gamify the encounter. I now know how to defeat them, so I can handle them. Still, they are much worse than haunts or apparitions, to me, simply because only finite resources can really destroy them. Haunts can be backstabbed, Apparitions can't do magic if you keep slashing them - piece of cake.

    One more comment on monsters vs. stealth: I agree, in the haunted levels sneaking is a good idea, although, I would exclude the Bonehoard from this, because when you have that much room to navigate, it is easy enough to lure zombies to a dead end room and just knock them out there, leaving them behind, never to rise from proximity again.

    The scariness of the undead levels actually wanes with your familiarity with the levels. I mean... I would NEVER have thought that there are only 9 zombies in the first Haunted Cathedral level. That is a very low number, so low that you can effortlessly destroy them all and enjoy the level once the unnerving moaning has stopped. Which leads me to a whole other thing: Ghosting. I do get the appeal of ghosting levels. But you couldn't pay me to ghost an undead level. Seriously. Clearing them away and then beating the level - fine. But having to sneak around them? I'd die.

    One more comment on level design: In T1 vs T2, I just think that levels are too big and too empty. Sure, Party is probably larger than most (is it actually? I think it's very dense, too), but in T1 you have loads of levels where you have just huge structures with nothing in them. Like, the Thieves' Guild, Mage Towers, Caverns, the Lost City or Assassins, to a point.

    And finally: The last three levels. I don't find them very sneaky. To be honest, I think Maw is a terrible level. It doesn't trigger me in any way, neither positively not negatively, but I just think the level design is awful. It is 100% linear. There is no reason to ever go back or check out a detour or anything like that. You can't even go shopping before the level! It is probably the most boring and least challenging level in all of Thief to me. Don't get me wrong, I do hate the likes of Assassins and Courier just as much as the next guy (<-guy^^), but at least they are somewhat challenging.

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2003
    Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth
    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha View Post
    You mentioned your top 10... would you name them? I'd like to know how highly Party ranks for you.
    1. Sword
    2. Party
    3. Cragscleft
    4. Caverns
    5. Bank
    6. Return
    7. Bonehoard
    8. Escape
    9. Towers
    10. Kidnap/Soulforge (can't decide)

    Quote Originally Posted by Meowdori View Post
    As for the sound design Klastremus mentioned - i don't see much difference between these two installments of the series. They both do the sound part very well (except when there's sudden volume spikes/muffling because of room brushing issues - thanks, Dark Engine, very cool)
    With sound design I don't mean how the game technically transfers sound from the dark engine to your ear. I mean how the level designers use sound to increase atmosphere, convey a message, or add to the ambiance. I'm sorry, but I'm gonna need more from your than just saying they both do it well in order to accept it. The echoing wails of the inmates in Cragscleft, the distant tune from the horn of Quintus, the creepy laugh from Constantine's upper floors, the opera from Song of the Caverns, rattling chains of haunts, the drips from the sewers below the Overlord's Fancy, the elemental ambiance from the Mage Towers. I could go on and on. Thief 2 has nothing to offer that is even remotely that immersive. It's all chatter from humans or regular street sounds, or mechanical robots with their annoying Karras recordings. Don't get me wrong, Thief 2 has it's moments here also; especially Precious Cargo, and perhaps even Trail of Blood.
    Klatremus' Supreme Thief Site - Walkthroughs, Loot Lists & Ghost Reports
    Let's Supreme Ghost Thief - YouTube Channel with Thief Let's Plays

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2018
    Personally I prefer Thief 2. I admit that Thief 1 has better atmosphere. It's based on fear from something unknown hiding in shadow. Thief 2 focus on fear from new technology, fear from progress. But Thief 1 atmosphere engaged me more. Thief 1 also has better ambient sounds. They are louder, but also better add to the atmosphere than in Thief 2. And there are also amazing cinematics from Thief 1. Conversation with Constantine and another twist with the Eye are 2 very memorable movies. Even briefings are better. They have more ambient sounds and even really energetic music, while in Thief 2 briefings are more quiet and in later missions they change into conversations with Victoria. I really miss Garrett's monologues from Thief 1 and first half of Thief 2. But even though Thief 1 has all these strong points, it has a lot of weakpoints too.

    1. Monsters. It was mentioned before - monster mission aren't very thiefy. You can ghost them, but I'm a guy that doesn't like forced ghosting in the missions. I want to clear all rooms from enemies and explore them peacefully. I KO all people, but I can't do the same with monsters (well, with some I can, but most of them must be killed). So for burricks I use sword and arrows. For zombies fire arrows and holy arrows. Also mines. Fire elementals can be easily killed with water. The problem is Garrett is weak offensive. His bow is slow, his sword slows him down and is also slow. And other enemies can easily kill him. That's why fighting is always stressful.

    2. Killing objectives. Thief 1 has not very thiefy objective of killing haunts. And later you can trigger objective with killing bugbeasts. Sure you can avoid this objective, but the first time you play, you will probably trigger it. It's really noisy. Also it's troublesome to figure out if you killed bugbeast after you KO-ed all of them (because you thought it's enough).

    Thief 2 focus on more thiefy objectives: You need to KO some guards, pickpocket them. There are also ghosting missions. The first time I played I hated them, but now after playing them many times, I actually like them a lot.

    3. Design is horrible. Most of the missions feel like mazes. Every corridor, cave and room looks the same. It's very easy to get lost. On the other hand Thief 2 has really logical places that I can methodically explore.

    4. Map is useless. Map is very vague and not helpful. What's the point of even showing it? On the other hand maps in Thief 2 are very detailed and automap is great. You can plan your movement. And I love it. Even if there is no map, Garrett will draw a map and it's 10 times better than any map in Thief 1.

    5. Story is very weak. It's probably controversial statement, but I believe that Thief 1 focus mainly on flavour of showing life of the people of certain areas than on main story. I would go even further and say that main story barely exist in Thief 1. Story is split into 3 parts:

    I) Garrett is doing random jobs. It's 5 missions in Thief TDP (up to The Sword) and 6 in Thief Gold. And it has nothing to do with main story at all.

    II) Fetch quest for the Eye. Garrett visits Old Quarter, then finds 4 Talismans and gets the Eye. 4 missions in Thief TDP and 6 in Thief Gold. Other than Constantine request it has nothing to do with main story. Not only that during Talisman missions you will not find any even vague information about the Eye sealed in Haunted Cathedral. You will never find out why Hammerites and mages got their hands on Talismans. Do they know it's value? I don't think so. The only reason I can find is because authors needed to create a mission for player. That's why Talismans are in Hammerites and mages possession.

    At this point I can see that storywise missions in Thief 1 are very disconnected with each other. It feels really bad. It actually reminds me a lot of Rebellion of the Builder 2 with it's completely different story every mission. That's really sad.

    III) Trickster's Arc - main story. 3 missions in TDP and Gold. Finally something is going on. It's just too bad that mostly we find out about this from briefings instead during the gameplay. Also I don't like that Trickster pops out of nowhere. He was never mentioned before. The thing that he was from legends I found out from him during the cutscene. It actually reminds me Mabrien from Death Cold Embrace. He also appears out of nowhere never mentioned before. I don't like it.

    On the other hand In Thief 2 story is very well presented. We start from 3 request missions in which we learn slowly about Mechanists inventions. They aren't bad guys yet. After Ambush we finally meet Mechanists in the Eavesdropping and slowly learn about them.Few more missions present their involvement into other people life.

    Then we see it from Pagans point of view. A group of people that I hate, because it's exact contradiction of Constantine's philosophy ("All human being must die!"). Their existence should have no place and if Trickster would see them, he would immediately execute them. The fact that Pagans exist is blasphemy and they were created only for story purposes. That's all.

    Thanks to Victoria we find out that Mechanists wants to kill us and in later missions we find out how big genius their leader is and how insane he is. And even later we learn how much we hate him. And killing him (indirectly) is very satisfying. Unlike dealing with Trickster - it felt like stealing candy from a baby.

    In Thief 2 the intrigue is presented very well, we hear and observe how city changes because of Mechanists. And how they involve in life of other groups of people. That's just awesome.



    That's why I believe Thief 2 is better than Thief 1. Of course both games has some really good missions. In Thief Gold it would be Bafford Manor, The Sword, Mage Towers (lately I found it enjoyable to play it) and Maw (I'm a huge fan of Maw, it's scary, linear, but very fun; I love ice slides and water ride).

    In Thief 2 it would be Shipping and Receiving, Bank, Blackmail, Precious Cargo and Casing the Joint (really fun ghosting mission more challenging than Framed). I also like the idea of putting Casing the Joint and Masks to play one after another. Just like in Death Cold Embrace it's fun to see what changed in the mission.

    Both games have also bad missions: In Thief 1 it would be Bonehoard (monster maze), Thieves Guild (I hate this level) and Return to the Haunted Cathedral (mostly because of ghost with comedic voice; the first time I played I couldn't understand what he's saying, now still I can barely understand what he's saying; in the end it's a fetch quest with lots of undead and very little equipment; I spent many hours in this mission and I hate it).

    In Thief 2 there is Running Interference (because it feels like a tutorial), Ambush (big empty city), Trail of Blood (Maw looks weird, there are rats, weird eyeball plants and monkeys instead of ratman; what the hell they did with Maw?!) and Soulforge (I hate creating guiding beacon, it's really tedious; towers are just bunch of trials and factory has no real life functions other than being obstacle for Garrett).

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2015
    Location: Shawano County, Wisconsin
    A few things I'd like to point out...

    Quote Originally Posted by Galaer View Post
    I) Garrett is doing random jobs. It's 5 missions in Thief TDP (up to The Sword) and 6 in Thief Gold. And it has nothing to do with main story at all.
    The first act may not be directly related to the later plot, but it's crucial for establishing the world of Thief to first-time players. It explores the criminal underbelly of The City and makes it clear that Garrett lives up to his reputation as a master thief, pulling off dangerous jobs that others wouldn't dream of (or failed in their attempt). In fact, it's these early escapades that convince Constantine to put Garrett to the test in the first place. Plus, story elements are introduced that get brought up again later, such as the Keepers, the Hammerites, and mankind shunning the natural world ("No paw hooks? What'd they do, just bump into each other?").

    II) You will never find out why Hammerites and mages got their hands on Talismans. Do they know it's value? I don't think so. The only reason I can find is because authors needed to create a mission for player. That's why Talismans are in Hammerites and mages possession.
    The Hammerites and Hand Mages have two of the Talismans because the Keepers gave them said Talismans; it's explicitly stated in the book from the Keeper's Chapel. The two factions also seem to at least be aware of the Talismans' purpose. The text in the Undercover briefing suggests the Hammerites keep the Talisman of Air in sight as a reminder of the Cataclysm; meanwhile, a conversation between two mages hints that they know the Trickster's return is imminent, and they want to gather the Talismans in the hopes of stalling or foiling him. After all, a letter in the Keeper's Chapel strongly implies that the Trickster was responsible for using The Eye to cause the Cataclysm, and Garrett proves to be the perfect unwitting pawn who helps him reclaim The Eye to unleash another disaster.

    Also I don't like that Trickster pops out of nowhere. He was never mentioned before. The thing that he was from legends I found out from him during the cutscene.
    There are a few mentions of the Trickster here and there, primarily from the Hammerites who make it clear that he is their sworn enemy ("...and the taint of the Trickster will always seek entrance."). Also, one of the notes in Ramirez's mansion treats him as more of a folklore character than a real entity ("...hop to it like the Trickster's on your tail."), building on the underlying theme of The City neglecting nature in favor of technology. Not to mention that the first proper cutscene has a few subtle clues that something is off about Constantine, even if you aren't sure exactly what (e.g. Viktoria abruptly finishing some of his sentences, or the plants growing from the drops of liquor).

    Then we see it from Pagans point of view. A group of people that I hate, because it's exact contradiction of Constantine's philosophy ("All human being must die!"). Their existence should have no place and if Trickster would see them, he would immediately execute them. The fact that Pagans exist is blasphemy and they were created only for story purposes. That's all.
    Huh? Killing all of humanity was never the Trickster's philosophy! One of his journals in Escape describes how he feels that the forces of progress have gone too far and mankind has lost all respect for the natural world. The purpose of the ritual was to unleash the chaotic forces of the Maw upon the humans' world and essentially revert civilization to the Stone Age. While he certainly had no issue killing the Hammerites and anyone else who opposed him, the Trickster's ultimate goal was to make humanity once again respect the power of nature - and, by extension, himself ("And, once my dark project is realized, they shall know again to fear and love their Lord."). In his eyes, humans were on the same level as every other sentient species, such as the Kurshok.

    In Thief 2 there is Running Interference (because it feels like a tutorial)
    That's because it is the tutorial for Thief 2, just like A Keeper's Training and Checking Inn, Cashing Out. The only difference is that Running Interference is nonlinear and can be freely explored like any other mission, whereas the other two are forced tutorials that won't let you continue until you do as you're told.

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2012
    I used to prefer Thief 2 over Thief Gold, but after 10 years of playing fan missions, my opinion has changed.

    When I think of Thief 2, I mostly remember a handful of standout missions while the others kinda blend into each other. Especially since the general style of T2 missions has been surpassed by fan missions by now: mansions and city streets. Generally, Thief 2's levels have less of a unique personality than Thief Gold's.

    In TG, on the other hand, almost every mission is unique and memorable. Cragscleft, Bonehoard, Constantine's Manor, Cathedral. There's a lot of variety and every level has its own personality.

    In T2 there isn't that much of a difference feel-wise between Truart's and Gervasius' manor, for example.

  18. #18
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    I haven't played many FM, but what is the difference between ones for T1 and T2? Different engines? I don't get it...

    The only fan stuff I have played was that campaign where you play a girl and the story ties in with T2 OMs (you see the truart murder from the other side), what is this called? And also Dark Mod, which I think is easily the best Thief game ever, at least "technically". At the time there were relatively few missions, however, and also I wouldn't touch DM missions or campaigns that have undead. They already unnerve me in dated 90s graphics, in DM they'd probably kill me.

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2019
    Location: Poland
    @Klatremus
    With sound design I don't mean how the game technically transfers sound from the dark engine to your ear. I mean how the level designers use sound to increase atmosphere, convey a message, or add to the ambiance. I'm sorry, but I'm gonna need more from your than just saying they both do it well in order to accept it.
    Ah, right, i wasn't completely sure what you were referring to, regarding the sound design, i think my thoughts fixated more on the technical side of it.

    Well, what you said rings true for T1 obviously, it's all there. Thief 2 lacking most of these soundscapes is merely due to the setting being completely different from the first game, which is justified for me, personally - Thief 2 also has them, they're just different. I personally have no polarising opinions on this, i think both games did what they were meant to do well here (some of things you mentioned are also present in TMA - there's few occasions where you can hear the haunts in their proximity, and Trail of Blood has a great nature ambiances).

    PS. I've been reading your name wrong all this time... Oh no, haha. Thanks for pointing it out, gotta admit it's gonna be hard for me to adjust my mind, but i'll try

    @Galaer
    The problem is Garrett is weak offensive. His bow is slow, his sword slows him down and is also slow. And other enemies can easily kill him. That's why fighting is always stressful.
    I actually think this is very much on the purpose, and conscious design decision. You're supposed to be discouraged from engaging in open battle. I understand how someone might dislike it though, but personally, i would hate to feel overpowered in terms of offensive capacity.

    Map is useless. Map is very vague and not helpful. What's the point of even showing it? On the other hand maps in Thief 2 are very detailed and automap is great.
    Again, as a thief, you don't always have the access to full information about the place you're going to plunder. Garrett was lucky in TMA to have so many detailed maps. Myself i don't have very strong opinion, as long as the game doesn't do the disgusting thing that many modern AAA games do and literally display a live GPS map with direct, dynamic pointers towards your goals. I actually loved sligtly vague maps in one of my favourite fan missions, Lord Alan's Factory.

    Story [in T1] is very weak.
    I wouldn't say it's outright weak, but i indeed enjoyed TMA's one more for the reasons you mentioned.

    One interesting thing though - my friend questioned the fact that in Thief 2, the speed and ease with which Karras with his religious order gets the noblemen to follow and trust him feels a bit off.

    It's hard to assess how big of a cult following he gathers throughout the progression of the game, but I don't really think it's that much, since it doesn't feel like the whole City suddenly falls for his promises and sermons, there's lots of people who are outright unhappy or suspicious about it, which you can overhear from the conversations between NPCs (Shipping comes to mind here)

    The fact that Pagans exist is blasphemy and they were created only for story purposes. That's all.
    I don't really agree with most of views pagans hold about the world, but this is exactly what makes things more interesting. Parties in quarrel and of conflicted interests are very needed, to spice the story up, and i love it.

    In Thief 2 there is Running Interference (because it feels like a tutorial), Ambush (big empty city), Trail of Blood (Maw looks weird, there are rats, weird eyeball plants and monkeys instead of ratman; what the hell they did with Maw?!)
    Uhhhh... Trail of Blood isn't the same place as the Maw from the first Thief, what made you even think that, lol. Running interference is simple and cozy, ideal starting mission IMO. I only agree that the city map for Ambush and TTC is immensely boring.

    PS. DON'T SPOIL DCE FOR ME AAA, I'M PLAYING IT LMAO
    Last edited by Meowdori; 13th Feb 2020 at 07:38.

  20. #20
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    Quote Originally Posted by Meowdori View Post
    Uhhhh... Trail of Blood isn't the same place as the Maw from the first Thief, what made you even think that, lol. Running interference is simple and cozy, ideal starting mission IMO. I only agree that the city map for Ambush and TTC is immensely boring.
    Probably the fact that Garret asks that question in-game? "Is this the Maw? Looks different somehow." I always interpreted this to mean that now Victoria is the supreme being in nature with the Trickster being disembodied.

  21. #21
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2019
    Location: Poland
    Quote Originally Posted by JarlFrank View Post
    In T2 there isn't that much of a difference feel-wise between Truart's and Gervasius' manor, for example.
    They felt very different to me, the only thing in common they have is the fact they're both mansions. The objectives and reasons why you were there were also different in both of these quests, thus making it feel unique (also i'm one of these rare few people who really likes two consecutive missions being set in Gervaisius' mansion and the ghosting requirement in the first one, but i'm digressing now).

    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha
    I haven't played many FM, but what is the difference between ones for T1 and T2? Different engines? I don't get it...

    The only fan stuff I have played was that campaign where you play a girl and the story ties in with T2 OMs (you see the truart murder from the other side), what is this called?
    No, Thief 1 and 2 run on the same engine (with some improvements in Thief 2, and now technically the exact same engine if you use NewDark). The campaign you're referring to is Thief 2X, i also played it and loved it very much, aside of some voice acting.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2019
    Location: Poland
    Quote Originally Posted by Hesha View Post
    Probably the fact that Garret asks that question in-game? "Is this the Maw? Looks different somehow." I always interpreted this to mean that now Victoria is the supreme being in nature with the Trickster being disembodied.
    Oh i either forgot or totally missed the fact that Garrett said this. Well, i'd say it's only his conjecture as to where he just found himself, but since this is never explicitly answered (or is it?), i think it's safe to assume it might be a different or related place, but not the exact same one.

  23. #23
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Lost in the BSP...
    @Meowdori: I just played Trail of Blood in T2, and I could swear that Garrett makes a comment of, something along the lines of, "This is the Maw?" and a bit later, "What have they done to it?" referring to 'it', as the 'Maw'. Maybe I'm remembering wrong..

  24. #24
    New Member
    Registered: Dec 2019
    It's no definite proof, but the Wiki states that Trail of Blood leads Garret back into the Maw. The article on the Maw also seems to agree with my sense that it's now Viktoria's realm.
    https://thief.fandom.com/wiki/OM_T2_Trail_of_Blood
    https://thief.fandom.com/wiki/The_Maw_of_Chaos

  25. #25
    DromEd Archmage
    Registered: Nov 2010
    Location: Returned to the eternal labor
    monkeys instead of ratman
    It breaks my heart to inform you about this... but no, those you call ratmen in TG were actually... not ratmen. They are Monkeys, Apes to be more accurate. Their files (meshes & textures) as their name in the game database confirms it. It's just the low polys which deceive you. Their design in T2 has certainly been made to avoid further confusion. And if you mention those in TDS, it's actually just a reference to that common mistake players does in TG.

    About the games, since I'm here, I'll just say that TG got more different environments than T2 in matter of visual as I would say that TG is clearly more colorful than T2 in matter of foe design and textures, making it way more memorable. I played both games more than once and I can say that T2 long less in my mind than TG just because of the atmosphere which is less rich than TG (it doesn't mean I think T2 has no atmosphere, just less impressive).

    And as Klatremus said, having other enemies than humans and robots make the game more challenging and interesting because you have to learn how to sneak them around, because you know you could have less chance to win a fight or a run against them.

    As a good example :
    you can be spotted by a guard, it does not matter that much because you can outrun and outsmart them very easily to pass / escape / knock them out.
    But with a haunt, you just can't do that. It will always follow you unless you climb some edge too high for it, you can't knock them out and they've got an advantage in a fight, forcing you to be more cautious and watch out your step. The same goes to plenty creatures.
    But in T2, even in the last mission, you still meet the same old same foes : robots which are too slow to get you, can be deceived to be turned off easily or macedudes who can be knocked out easily despite their new design.

    In matter of gameplay and level design, I must say both games are doing right their jobs since T2 don't recycle TG's gameplays or do it so rarely/differently which is a strong point for the franchise. All I'll say about it is that TG is more focused on adventure than T2 which is aiming at investigation instead.

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