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Everything posted by Luridis

  1. IMO Wheel of Time is a mediocre story at best. And, of his personally stated goals for the series, the author really only achieved one of the two I know of. The one that failed, in my opinion, is women having privilege. If an author really intends to do such a thing, the characters should at least be consistent with the real world. i.e. Just because someone has privilege doesn't mean they can't also be brilliant, capable, etc. However, Jordan seems to think privilege means those characters that have said privilege must also be stupid, petty, chaotic, cynical, utterly illogical and/or display no subtlety at all. These universal female character flaws go extremes so fantastic that these people appear almost caricature in nature. There are many more glaring holes in the series: Why would anyone side with the dark one? They get nothing out of it, except abuse, a contradictory chain of command and death upon the smallest failure. Throughout that whole series I don't think I saw a single "dark friend" (goodness he needed help with naming things) be rewarded with anything save not getting killed or punished. Don't even get me started on the "Seanchan". Common sense would tell anyone that not only would such an empire survive only by the skin of its teeth, but simply could not exist as a "power" due to the chaos its leadership would breed with its behavior. Anyhow, the books are so much nonsense that on my second read through I wondered how they survived without scathing peer review.
  2. Witcher 3 Devs started out with no idea how to make games? More than a decade ago, I read that Blizzard had no idea how to make an MMO when it made WoW. (Now ruined by Activision IMO) Now, what the folks are saying in the comments is that this is because of publisher practices and "standard operating procedure" etc. My thought is this: While all of that is possible, could there be a much simpler explanation? I imagine when a lot of these successful games pop up from first time or near first time developers there is something they don't have, that very experienced developers do have... A concept of limitations. In fact, most of retro gaming is filled with titles that were made by people whom had no preconceptions about what is possible and what was not. Additionally, there were no curriculum for game design with professors telling them what's possible and what isn't. Perhaps the reason why what they try often works is because they have no reason to believe that it won't. After all, complacency is one sure way to undermine one's goals.
  3. I suspect the reason you're not getting much of a response is because your question isn't entirely clear.
  4. Wasn't really important to the point. My feelings are that a company cannot claim zero tolerance and then tolerate... regardless of circumstance. And, I'll say nothing more since I'd rather spend my time on more civil points. Like... free games! Here's one: They seem to need a better sound designer though...
  5. Not really interested in anything a company makes that seemingly does nothing when members of their team display open bigotry on social networks, regardless of which group that hostility is pointed at. No interest in MEA here. I mean, if the person in question didn't involve their prominent position as a game developer within a triple A publisher in said statements I'd be much more inclined to cut EA some slack but, that's not what is actually happening.
  6. Thinking about this... I like stylized stuff.
  7. TBH, I wonder too if the obnoxious stuff like the way pathing works might also be the result of maintaining a common codebase with a console-enabled game. And that is not to say that one method is better than the other. We've all seen poor console to PC ports. In past years I can remember poor PC to console ports. So, it's not about one being better than the other. It's about fundamentally different interfaces requiring entirely different approaches to game design in order to fit their target platform well. I can no more conceive of a good port of Neverwinter Nights 1 to PS4 than I could imagine playing the original Tomb Raider with a keyboard and mouse. Finally, on that note, I can't imagine a text-heavy game being well received on a console.
  8. I just woke up. I have a right - no, an obligation - to be grumpy :-P Maybe this will cheer you up... FloppyTron to the rescue.
  9. It's more about majority of actually good developers doing jobs with sane hours and good pay. That was actually a joke, the (_|_) hurt isn't necessary.
  10. Alright... WTF developers? Have they stopped teaching this in CS curriculums? First, there was the HWR effup! Video: 1998 formation behavior (beginning) vs what gearbox "programmers" came up with in 2015. (2nd Half) Now, this... So, I'm not imagining that its worse than it is. I really is that bad... Well, it all supports my theory that teaching OOP and "Java" as a curriculum result in halfwit devs.
  11. I backed the game and was enjoying it right up until the UI bit me in the face. Clicking on loot is hard and you can't seem to select a single character for an out-of-combat action. So, if you're in a dungeon and you click on loot that is not accessible to every member of your party... You end up with a party doing its best Benny Hill impersonation and creating a suicidal aggro chain. How such a blatantly obvious hole in game-mechanics makes its way past play-testing is probably the biggest mystery in game development to me. How the party running around aggroing willy-nilly in the first dungeon a play-tester tried didn't end up on tomorrow's "top issues" for the dev team is utterly mind boggling. Such to me is akin to an application bug that would, should you open an input form, decide not to input and click "cancel"... find yourself unceremoniously dumped to the desktop instead of back at the app's main window! "Wait, I didn't click X, I said cancel... Why did the whole thing shut down?" This sort of game logic behavior leaves me with a likewise feeling. If there's no solution I missed then I'm going to shelve TTON and perhaps try Horizon ZD while inxile sorts out the post-launch fixes. HZD actually looks decent in the action-rpg mechanics and excellent in the story area... from what I am hearing anyway.
  12. I should add this... This was done by someone whom understands the number scaling problems in space games. Kudos to them. http://youtu.be/OBYRIZA44Eg
  13. They so carefully pruned that pre-release footage that I never imagined gameplay would be so incredibly shallow. I dare say that most board games are more compelling than "scan creatures" and "refill your shields with titanium", as if the latter mechanic makes sense to anyone who's ever played Elite, Wing Commander, Independence War, Freelancer, etc.
  14. ...of every TOMB RAIDER since the first one? No. The first Tomb Raider actually had very little combat and what little combat there was was mostly against animals. That game was heavily focused on puzzle platforming, (I'm guesstimating here) about 85% exploration and puzzle platforming and 15% combat, and thus is my favorite game in the series. Every Tomb Raider after gradually increased the combat percentage (much to my dismay) to the point where Underworld was like 65% exploration and puzzle platforming and 35% combat. Even with the increase in combat, that game was still focused on puzzle platforming (though much less than I'd like). Then Torture Porn Rider pushed it much further in the combat direction to the point that the 2013 reboot was about 75% combat and 25% exploration. I purposely didn't mention puzzle platforming because, while technically there were some puzzles, they were so childishly easy that it was flat out insulting, thus I argue they don't count. I'm not saying this as an exaggeration for emphasis, I legitimately felt insulted by the "puzzles" in Tomb Raider 2013. The earlier games, though less about puzzle platforming than I'd like, still had puzzle platforming as an integral part. The "puzzle platforming" in the reboot felt like an afterthought, like they were patronizing me. It was sad. Anyway, what I want is a game even less combat focused than the first Tomb Raider and more open and with more human (non-killing) interactions with people. Like talking to them. Gen-Y developers are faced with a publishing world that loves FPS. Thus, everything must be FPS-like in order to get funding consideration. Indeed, I think a lot of them have never had the chance to even entertain the idea of depth in gameplay. If they did they'd understand why so many of us old-school game players find the idea of "press x at the right time" or "press O as fast as you can" as game mechanics to be incredibly un-inventive and shallow. I mean, I'm playing an RPG, not "Press Your Luck and come on no whammies!". If I want that sort of mechanic I'll go to Chucky Cheese and play whack-a-mole.
  15. I sure am sorry how it ended up turning out FlintlockJazz. No Man's Sky ended up being yet another failed space sim. Space games are hard to do well and those developers whom would attempt such without sufficient research are asking to put a lot of man-hours into reliving mistakes that countless others have made. It seems Hello Games went to the genre half-****ed and found themselves making the same mistake that the Limit Theory developer made. Perhaps I should make a rules list for the small team and indie devs that fancy the space genre... Rule #01: Understand the biggest problem in open world space sims: that of universe scale IRL, game world space and the limitation of floating point limits in consumer GPUs. Someone on your development team must understand linear algebra, trigonometry and Cartesian mathematics to a high degree. Indeed someone must understand 3D engine architecture deeply and be able to plan the game mechanics and/or 3D engine work-arounds from the very beginning to compensate for this core problem of the genre. Rule #02: Do not focus entirely upon Randomly Seeded Procedural Generation, if indeed you choose to use it at all. Commonly abbreviated as "Procedural Generation" is, by it's very nature, at odds with the depth design element. Things like faction affiliations, ship choice and universe economics become much more difficult when everything is randomized. Run afoul of #2 and people will accuse your game of being "a mile wide and an inch deep". Run afoul of #1 and you'll be announcing that the universe won't feature gas giants, planets will be small, and space backdrops will feel wrong because planets and moons are in gravitationally impossible proximity. It is pretty sad that it turned out the way it did and it's no wonder to me why publishers have largely abandoned the genre. Developers, indie or not, frequently bite off more than they can chew trying to make a space sim on a whim. The truth is, even if it's only single player, a modern space sim akin to 1994's Frontier Elite II would require a back-end nearly as complex as any MMO. Last time I looked at XML document from my latest X Rebirth save game, it was 1,340,766 lines long and it's only got half a dozen start systems in the whole game.
  16. There is only one thing many game developers/publishers get consistently wrong, and from this all other problems of consequence spring... Making games to make money instead of making money to make games. Like so many other things that have issues of quality, it's all in the focus and intent. After all, which would you rather go to? A physician whom went to medical school for money, prestige and an expensive car, or... Someone who went to medical school because they actually like to help sick people.
  17. From what I gathered it seems like devs don't care about writing a story for a game procedurally generated, they think gameplay & exploration is enough, which is why I don't like it. I like sandbox systems(f.e. some npc/s roaming the game map off screen - lucky/unlucky encounters with them) better than procedural things happening as we go(f.e. the same npc/s just spawns near the player for his convenience). Right now they don't. But, as the technology changes it will be possible. Not with the story itself, but with the locations and NPCs involved. As far as NPCs wandering off map, that's typically a bug. That or, IMHO, a lazy developer who's created a spawn and/or move function/procedure/method that does not position check. The vid below shows how basic bounds checking is, but in this case it's for a 2d object in the game window instead of an actor on a map. Things get more complicated in 3D and, using middleware can obscure game object procedures and increase the possibility of bugs. Alot of Skyrim's issues stem from that I think, especially the long running NPC navmesh issue they had for player mods. However, the principal is essentially the same. (create new NPC, check if randomized x, y and z are beyond player navigable x, y and z.)
  18. How about an original Scifi game utilizing the generic D20 system? Stay way from 3rd party IP, as it ends up being too costly. Timewise, further in the future than cyberpunk, but not as far as Star Wars/Trek. Heavily a frontier game, where the adventure is in going out and discovering things, like first alien contact or even xenomonsters. Or hell, even a modernized Lost in Space. RPG mechanics capitol spaceship combat? Maybe, maybe not. But... Pulse Plasma Pistol 1D6. Lightweight Forcefield Jacket, +2AC. etc.
  19. As far as games that will never exist... Don't be so sure. Random seeded procedural content generation has a long way to go. Just look at things like SpeedTree and other uses of the golden ratio. How long before faces and even whole models can be generated in this way? What about dialogue? Well, just look at Siri. I can imagine a day when almost all content generation for game development goes the way of generate and touch-up. At which time, most of the development effort will probably be in writing the story, game mechanics and parameters for the content generation.
  20. No Man's Sky, and yes, it's going to be on PC as well. It's largely single player and can be played offline, unlike E:D. (Looks like there's more to do than in E:D as well.)
  21. Eh, not really, when it's just "in-engine" there's likely little else eating resources (like network stuff, AI, other players...) how negligible this is depends highly on the complexity and optimization of said systems. The problem with your argument is, frankly, you simply do not know enough about what you're speaking about. I'll use your statement about Eve Online as an example... No, the reason is exactly the same as one I stated above was the difference between in-engine and in-game: camera controls not available to the player. The Eve Online community has been asking the developer CCP for the tools to recreate the Eve trailers for more than a decade and they've only started working on one this year. While your assumptions make sense, they are ultimately incorrect. First, you are confusing two distinct parts of a game engine and treating them as if they are interchangeable:collision detection with particle systems. Second, Eve is an MMO-RPG, not a MMO-SIM, so what you call "trajectory" calculation for "bullets and lasers" is not done at all in the game. What you're thinking of in this case, hit and miss, is calculated server-side and has nothing to do with real physics. (Note: real math is involved, but it's not representative of reality. As I said, Eve is an RPG mechanically.) As far as your client drawing rockets and bullets, those are no different than drawing detailed terrain or a highly detailed human dace. What matters is the total number of vertexes, regardless of what they comprise, in the scene vs the throughput of your hardware, which is done by the CPU in one phase and the GPU in the final rendering and image projection. Most modern computer gaming hardware can handle Eve Online in the largest battles at the highest settings without needing to reduce graphics quality. However, this doesn't mean the frame rate will never drop, the server itself can cause that if the battle is overloading the server node through a mechanic called Time Dilation. Last, you mention AI and other players, both of which are not client-side in any MMO. So, everything you mentioned made sense at the surface. However, if you know a little about how games work at the code level, things change. (Note: Knowing how to code is not the same as knowing how games are made. Believe me, I made poor assumptions too, until I read some actual textbooks on game development.) So, as I explained before, the difference between in-engine and in-game is most likely a distinction made by developers between what they can do in-engine and what the player could do in the player version of the software. I say "most likely" because it is my best guess. The meaning of those terms likely changes from developer to developer. Edit for Clarification: Some types of collision detection are done client-side in MMO's. Wall and model-to-model collisions are often done client-side for rendering smoothness and to combat so called rubberbanding. That said, when it comes to hit or miss, anything RPG-like will most likely be server side, while FPS is likely to be client-side. As a result, one is more exploitable than the other... Just search on youtube for your favorite FPS and the words "wall hack".
  22. I'd like to thank you... That video showed me something that I've been missing for a while now. A lot of my angst is directed at what games and gaming has become. I blame a lot of that on big business taking over. But still, I've known there was some other element I was missing, and now I finally understand what that is. Games are no longer directed exclusively at what developers and publishers assume are moderate to very intelligent audiences. In the past, this was the domain of freaks and geeks. And, regardless of which you were, you looked at the world in an entirely different way than "the masses". Now that gaming has gone mainstream, I totally missed that publishers no longer have to consider things like cliche plots and horridly written dialogue. This is because most of "the masses" can't even manage to use an automatic spell checker unless its turned on by default, much less recognize terrible literary snafus in their game narratives. As an example, here's what passed as a Star Wars game back in the day... http://youtu.be/0LLZq5SnBVc And this is what passes for the same now... I think I'll pass on the modern effort. Looks visually impressive, but so do a lot of things that are essentially boring as hell, in spite of their visual appeal.
  23. Diablo 3 UE is out for PC, but I rate it at -1 stars. Why? Always online DRM. Blizz (*Activision) & Fans Say: But it's not, its for... RMAH: This has been removed. It was a bad idea, they were told this before release by dozens of news sites. Still they did it and the result was exactly as predicted. Regardless, this excuse won't work anymore. Anti-Item-Hackers: Peoplz use hack thingies to dupe items. Always online prevents this. Response: No, it does not. Cheaters, as I like to call them, will find a way, just like piracy. As it turns out, Diablo 3 PC has a huge botting problem, not to mention exploit abuse. So now, instead of duped items with known ID's, people can go to work and let the computer farm a real Obsidian Ring of the Zodiac with optimal stats. So, while it stopped duping per se, it does not prevent cheating, which was the whole point of their argument for always-online. Conclusion: Always online is about DRM, not whatever lie they're corporate marketing brand-management strategist has come up with over Martini's on the weekend. So, if you're set in D3, I'd say try the console version, it's the only one unladen by needless restriction.
  24. The difference between "in-engine" and "in-game" is actually negligible. The typical difference between the two is that one is something you can do, and the other is a predefined camera script that makes it move in ways a controlled actor can't. Eve Online does this all the time with their patch announcement cut-scenes. So, as a player, you probably can't replicate the path of the camera, but you can most likely see all of the same things from vantage points along the path that was created for the cut-scene.
  25. It looks pretty feasible to me. As a matter of fact, it has always been feasible. The reason no one has done it is because 3D engines aren't typically made with the math libraries necessary to do it. Read: Specialized vector transforms that translate a larger float for the world space, camera frustum, or both. Including tricks like rendering two scenes, one with a z-depth behind the other. Believe me, I've looked at how it would be done extensively from a programming perspective. The biggest single problem is that the best solutions to the large coordinate space problems cannot be done as a quick fix, they're far easier to build the engine around, than modify existing engines to do. Most games don't need this sort of thing. Even open world games like Skyrim can get by without a 64 bit world integer. But, if you wanted to cover seamless distance from the sun to Pluto, with millimeter precision, you'll need to completely run even that number (64 bit) out at least twice, shifting the world origin each time you do. The root problem is, and always has been, a lack of need for large precision numbers in video games. None of these genres need them, or at least not in their current iterations: FPS, Sports, Strategy, RPG, Adventure, Puzzle, Platformer. The need for this is almost exclusive to simulation games and even flight sims can work around the problem more easily. The result is that those massively parallel GPU's we've come to love lose most (over 90%) of their GFLOPS by switching to 64 bit numbers. So, unless we want to see a slide-show, tricks are going to be involved in rendering scenes that involve units of both quintillion and milli. There are dozens of rendering tricks for this, and none of them solve every problem. Especially... if you expect to do this stuff at 1:1 scale. All that said, I've been a Star Citizen backer from the original Kickstart campaign. I put in my hundred bucks in the hopes it would pan out and, while the ongoing campaign concerns me, they have produced. Even the various stages of the alpha I've tried have all been stable and worked well. My hope is that they'll finish it within the next couple of years. If not, it was worth a hundred bucks, I've tossed that away and gotten less from other stuff. As far as the feasibility goes: This... this is not bad. Not bad at all. (And I suspect the unmodified CryEngine wouldn't be able to do this, it is more than LOD adjustment.)
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