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crazyrabbits

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About crazyrabbits

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  1. Tying in with my earlier post, I'm not too big on the stamina meter either. Dragon Age II used a system that seems quite similar to this - people who were stamina-drained were running around like headless chickens just before they got maimed. Players who were health-drained were maimed until the end of the battle. In theory, it should have been great. In practice, it was an awful mess - you'd constantly have to jump into your quickbar to tell party members to drink health potions. Certain squadmates (Merrill, I'm looking at you) got "killed" almost immediately, and in situations where you had few potions, you often ended up with all of your party members maimed and you running around trying to get hits in while a horde of enemies chased you around the map, and/or you were sniping giant bosses from a distance by yourself for what could be 10 or 20 minutes just to finish a fight. That's why the IE games worked so well - you could immediately cast restorative magic on your party, grab/equip their weapons and jump back in the fight without too much of a problem.
  2. I typically kill downed enemies when they fall, regardless of whether something else is attacking me. In something like BGII, when I finally down a giant troll after what could be a solid minute of slashing him, I'm going to make he's not going to get back up after he goes unconscious. I've been in combat situations where I've felled a large enemy, concentrated on other attackers, then had to deal with him again when he got back up. I've forgotten about downed enemies who've attacked me on my way out of a dungeon or area. Insofar as whether combat XP is or isn't a good thing, I don't think only accomplishment-based XP is the way to go. There are people who will speedrun through the game and be screwed if they're not getting XP (however small it is) for combat encounters along the way. Likewise, there's always been an intrinsic value to fights where you see how much XP you've earned - most of the time, it's fairly insignificant, but it makes you feel like you're working your way towards a bigger goal. If I want to change things up after multiple playthroughs and try completing a quest than killing the questgiver for more XP, that's my business. I don't feel we should be arbitrarily restricted by a different experience system.
  3. Why are you sad? Their social media campaign has been genius. This route is guaranteed profit for them, for several reasons: 1) In terms of marketing, you usually get a 10% return back on sales leads/calls. If 10% of the people who come in at each 2,500-backer dungeon level (250) and liked the FB page come in at the average pledge (which is about $50, according to Kicktraq), that's another $12,500 they get for practically nothing. Not only that, but the fact that 1/3'rd of their backers have translated to Facebook (or vice versa) is astounding. 2) It costs comparatively less to code/create a single level of a dungeon than an entire city or new companion, which is why I figure they tied it into their social media. They get free advertising, a chance to boost their online presence and they can draw in new backers for very little risk. That, in turn, translates to more pledges and exposure. 3) It normally takes a long time for companies and regular individuals to amass FB friends/likes. It took me almost 5 years to get 1,500 friends (although because of the field I work in, it was easier). Yet, it's not the be-all and end-all of exposure - Obsidian's already had a ton of positive press, possibly the most of any Kickstarter campaign so far. That's already pushed them above and over the top. The boost during these last three days of the campaign will also bump the like count up from new visitors who find the project and want to donate. They won't get 400,000 likes, but their social media campaign will be enough to give them a significant boost in terms of exposure and backers. That's all I expected.
  4. I hated it. That was pretty much the only major part of BGII that I didn't like. Aside from the hopelessly-messed up pathfinding errors, both when setting waypoints and waiting for my team to travel to the destination I clicked on, the city was incredibly lackluster. There were only a handful of buildings with little to do in any of them besides take part in pit fights, the narrative could be boiled down to "half the city kills each other because the evulz", and the entire questline could easily be skipped with no consequences. Not to mention the whole "meeting time system" was a waste - you either went immediately to the meeting without waiting the three days, or you had to run like crazy to get to the meeting that takes place in an hour. I'd be happy if I never saw that city again.
  5. OP, your poll and post are confusing. Are you talking about collection quests (collect x items for y person), hoarding items for completeness' sake, or optional collectibles you can use to adorn your base (a la ME2/3)? I don't mind collection sidequests, if it gives me access to new areas. It's a staple of the genre, and I've come to expect it. In regards to collectibles themselves, I think they should be standard in RPG games. Giving you the ability to deck out your house/stronghold in unique items and artifacts you find along the way gives a touch of uniqueness and personality to each playthrough.
  6. With the Paypal donations factored in, it's likely around $2.74-2.76 milion right now. It will easily be over $2.8 by tomorrow morning. I swear, I'm going to have a heart attack if they keep amazing me like they have during this campaign. Just one piece of awesome news after another.
  7. In my line of work, people who pitch tend to waste time by dodging questions or giving huge flowery explanations while circling the point. I only need to know three things - what do you need, how much is it going to cost, and when will it be done? Obsidian has done a stellar job of maintaining a conservatively-run campaign, with enough content and fleshed out basic information to give backers a clear picture of what they want and how much funding they'll need right from the get-go, along with strong regard to fan feedback. The Old-School RPG campaign, on the other hand, is all over the place. I still don't get their goals - they want to create a single game with the support of two developers, but they'll split off and do their own separate games if enough money is raised? It's being quoted as a successor to games like Wizardry, but it has a sci-fi edge with what appears to be an "old-school" setting shoehorned into the story? I like the pedigree of the developers - I really do. I can never fault the man who gave us the voice of Walton Simons in Deus Ex, but I just can't seem to get excited over this.
  8. You have to have limits in games. While I'm sure that everyone would love to see a balls-to-the-wall series where every minute choice you make has far-reaching consequences three or four games down the line, you need a lot of funding (all that additional content takes time to create, animate and write, and it's not a given that all of the player base will see it) and/or you need to be absolutely sure what you're going to do across the whole franchise. TWD was never going to have Carley/Doug stay with you for the entire series, not only because a majority of players picked one over the other (rendering the other a virtual non-entity and a waste in terms of budget), but that was development time going to two separate characters with their own unique dialogue and mission options. I doubt they could keep that up indefinitely, given the relatively short development time and budget. They've done well with giving the player just enough flexibility (cosmetic changes, moral decisions) to make them feel like they've made an impact on other characters. ME3 is a different case. While ME2 handled importing well (the game notably changed, most in text updates and extra snippets of alternate dialogue), the designers either lost their scripting maps or just didn't want to bother with creating all that extra content with a limited development time, because it homogenized every choice in 3 into the same outcome (and same ending), regardless of what you did throughout the series. There is little benefit to a person who played the entire trilogy (vs. a new player) besides an extra outcome in the Geth vs. Quarians plotline. If Obsidian is going to handle the concept of choice, they should (as others have mentioned) make it so that future installments run on a standardized set of choices (a la BG or Deus Ex), or in the event that they're planning alternate content and extra material for different choices, relegate to a handful of major instances that pay off down the road, without going into too many variables.
  9. I have a feeling this will be a big day - pledges will probably top $2.5 mil, we'll get new stretch goals/add-on options, and pledges/likes will hit 55,000 and 20,000 respectively. This is the kind of push I wanted to see.
  10. They could easily top $3.2 million if they push their stretch goals over this final week. I just want them to continue adding game areas, new companions and classes - maybe even throw in some Easter eggs and more crafting recipes for people to try out.
  11. If anything, this Kickstarter is one of the most conservatively-built campaigns I've ever seen. They haven't built in stretch goals that are too far off from their current monetary amounts, which says to me that they've been planning this very carefully. I'm willing to bet they already had the basics of the story and several pieces of art planned out by the time they started this whole thing. If anything, they've made very good assumptions about their base. They know that the funding is already anted up, and anything else afterwards is just the gravy on top. Look at it this way - people have been calling Bioware out for months, nay, years for failing to live up to the standards of their older works and being under the thumb (inadvertantly) of a larger corporate entity. Now we have a developer, free of corporate influence, that's raised enough to fund a game that is structured well enough to allow for future installments and expansions down the road (which is pretty much a fan's wet dream), and has some of the leaders in the RPG industry supporting it, and you have the audacity to say they're making "bad assumptions"? That's about the furthest thing from the truth. Plenty of people are excited about the new classes, additional companions and Adventurer's Hall. I know I'm excited to test out additional party members - it spurs replayability. Pets are said to be a cosmetic addition - it won't radically change the game. Also, I'm fairly sure they've already weighed the cost-benefit to running a campaign to increase the "Endless Paths", either through Facebook or pledges. It doesn't take much money-wise to craft an extra floor of a dungeon per 2,500 extra backers. You know, I kind of figured that there'd be less whining from people who either have no faith in what the developer is doing or are just so jaded that the concept of an independently-funded RPG with all the fixings is an impossible concept in 2012.
  12. All true. And after sitting back and rolling my eyes at people expressing a lot of fear, I think I've actually found some empathy. EA/Bioware (and many, many others besides) have released an awful lot of games with cut content that you can buy via "micro transactions" (I bet George Orwell would have loved that one?). Thus cut content instead gets called "DLC." I even got suckered into it with DA:O and that stupid stone golem companion. What a sorry state gaming is in, where the expectation is that companies are mainly interested in screwing people over instead of actually entertaining them. You know, TotSC wasn't a big expansion. You got one new town (Ulgoth's Beard), one new small dungeon (the Ship of Balduran) and one mega-dungeon (Durlag's Tower), along with a handful of inconsequential filler areas. It had more in common with Old World Blues than Throne of Bhaal, which is still the pinnacle of old-school expansion packs as far as I'm concerned. I said this on another board, but it still rings true. Ten years ago, companies wouldn't cut characters out and sell them to you piecemeal. The cut content was just that - inconsequential. The BG2 Unfinished Business mod was nice to have, but didn't do much besides give you more dialogue with Suna Seni/Bodhi and the ability to create Boo clones. Nowadays, they cut lore-heavy characters like Javik out and sell it for $10 while the setup files (along with the pre-order/CE content) are on-disc. Recently, I've had people try to justify Shale ("(Download Content) Let me take a look.") and the on-disc Resident Evil 6 costumes. Going back to the days of Shivering Isles-level expansion packs is not a bad thing. I'd rather have a full-fledged extra campaign than a 2-3 hour miniquest that doesn't do much besides leave me with a few new items and a feeling that it was just an appetizer instead of the after-dinner dessert. DA:O's Return to Ostagar/Awakening kind of got that right, but it's been a while since anyone making RPG's gave us a fully-fledged expansion.
  13. A realistic (well, as realistic as a game can be) exploration of child labor/slavery. If nothing else, it should be done to show other companies how mature themes can be handled in a complex and respectful way. Let's say you come across a town that openly and flagrantly allows children to be sold for housework and/or indentured servitude. You come across an open auction where a group of children, including one or more that appear to have been injured on the job, are being "resold" to other clients. You can handle this situation multiple ways. 1) You can walk up and break them out, which has the effect of making you lose your reputation within the community and/or lead to a chain reaction that results in you having to kill guards/residents who try to attack you, with the end result being that you ask yourself whether the loss of life was worth it. 2) You can bargain for some of the children and release them, at the cost that the one(s) you weren't able to save end up being sold to a trader/merchant who takes him somewhere outside of the in-game world, and you are left wondering if you could have saved them all. 3) You bargain for all of the children, release them all, then have to deal with the consequences - you end up having to pay more money to cover their recuperation/shelter at a local orphanage, but you get a rep bonus and there's additional content down the line (one of the children was stolen from a noble in a far-off city, who welcomes you in and gives you discounts when s/he learns that you rescued their child). Something like that.
  14. Sorry, where was this taking place? The only things I've seen are people that are so jaded on day-one piecemeal DLC criticizing the company because they don't remember the days of full-fledged expansion packs. I trust that Obsidian is not going to be using funds from the main game's budget (as they've stated) to fund separate content packs. ...is genius. They get more exposure, press (PC Gamer mentioned it) and potential backers/sales. If even 1% of the people who like the page decide to donate, it's already a win. This is basic marketing 101. And what's wrong with that? The creator of W2 has enough faith in the project that he wants to help sweeten the pot for people who have already donated - I see nothing wrong with that. It's an additional bonus you weren't getting yesterday. If it drives the incentive to come in at a higher price point, why not? You're already getting the base game for less than half of retail price, and the proceeds from this Kickstarter are all going to the base game. The sales of the product will presumably enough that they can funnel it (seeing as it's likely going to be all-digital, it's practically pure profit) into more expansions/funding for future installments. If you've already donated at the base price, you're getting a full-fledged product with the guarantee of the developer that it will have a rich amount of content. If you invested the "market value" ($60) of the game, you get a boxed copy and bonuses. If you're generous enough to go above a certain price point, you get additional bonuses over and on top of an already-stacked package for your commitment. We haven't even seen what their stretch goals are for the next week - it's likely going to push the base game up and over in terms of content, and drive pledges up. I fail to see how this is a bad thing.
  15. I'm liking this. My thoughts. I don't think that would be apt for an RPG, seeing as it would put most parties at a power loss for most of the game, and would waste a lot of time. If I had to go to an inn every...let's say 30 minutes to rest and boost my efficiency back up, that wastes precious time that I could be out doing other things - advancing the story, exploring a dungeon/region or managing my party. I don't want to be constantly checking my efficiency rating - I just want to get lost in the story and advance at my own pace. Maybe if you had something like a background timer that indicated your chance of being waylaid or ambushed by enemies, based on the time spent since you last slept. If you slept within the last...let's say 24 hours in-game, your chance of being ambushed is far less than if you've been going nonstop and aren't alert enough to notice an encrouching enemy. Thing is, you can also do the same thing with just about any character (barring a rogue/thief, which could hide in the shadows and backstab/poison/scout/etc). About the only advantage I see a familiar having is a flying ability, which would allow it to scout regions quickly and effectively. The only game I've seen where an animal companion worked really well was in Fable II, and I don't see that level of characterization or detail being applied to an animal when it could just as easily be applied to a full companion with a storyline. As a cosmetic bonus, I don't mind it, but I don't think it should be the be-all, end-all unless someone can assure the gamers that it would have more complexity than normal. Wouldn't that require additional resources/planning? Typically, the only function I've ever used a keyboard for in-game are console commands. You can accomplish the same thing with a standard response selection interface. What Obsidian should focus on is rewarding players who opt for alternate/harder solutions to gameplay elements with alternate dialogue reflecting their non-descript actions, and/or rewarding them via more conversation options or extra goodies. Agreed. Obsidian has made a career of having choices not just be black-and-white, but have complex and varied outcomes. I hope they can accomplish that in-game. I'd go even further and say I hope they can make a true branching storyline like The Witcher 2 (have locations and situations change dramatically based on a couple of early decisions, and have it stay that way through the game), but that's a hopeful wish. Agreed. I've been playing BG2 recently, and I've noticed how the plot just seems to drive you nonstop, when sometimes all I want to do is just "relax" and take the side missions (and mods) at my own pace. You should be rewarded for going off the beaten path and doing objectives/quests that may have repercussions/rewards later on. This is why I appreciate Obsidian's method of letting players approach encounters/dialogue situations with different solutions. You can grow as a character throughout the narrative, craft your own destiny, and approach new and mysterious characters (hero/villain alike) with dialogue/intelligence/skill checks that influence the situation. I am sure there will be a lot of mystery in this game - I'm excited to see how I can approach in the way I see fit. Agreed with this one. Most of Bioware's output in terms of romances have been heavily homogenized over the years - it's the same "sex is the culmination of everything, and nothing else" plotline that they've used in most of their games. Thing is, they've only recently introduced LGBT romances into their narratives, even if it's at the cost of established characterization (see what happened to Kaidan Alenko in ME3). I've said before that I would like to see a "reward"-based romance system, where the successful culmination of a romance would give you access to something like their loyalty power, a new skill for the player or even something as simple as additional dialogue - it can vary. As long as it feels like every relationship has different (and far-reaching) consequences, and isn't the same "every squad member says an alternate line at the same fixed point", it would be a very unique gameplay mechanic. Those are my thoughts.
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