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Bobba Fett

A Strange New Trend in RPG videogames

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Vampires The Masquerade - Bloodlines

KOTOR II - The Sith Lords

Dungeon Lords

The Bard's Tale

 

The last 4 RPG's for the PC that failed to deliver because ...

 

... they came out incompleted, rushed, not properly tested.

 

Thinking that everything can be fix / be OK with some patches later?

 

I becoming aware that the gaming industry is just all the other industies, they have to make money (as much as posible), but is this what we must prepare ourselfes for?

 

Wait several months after a game is released until we have the first patch???

Buy a good RPG a year??

Does the game developers/publishers think that this is a normal situation??

 

:)

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A lot of games need patching post release not just RPGs. Freedom Force v The Third Reich was in pretty good shape upon release. Not very fun, imo, but it was very playable upon release.

 

I think you have this problem in any genre and with any kind of software. There are just too many different kinds of set ups out there that you need to account for...

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Baldur's Gate, Fallout, Darklands, The Magic Candle, and Pool of Radiance (the original and the newer one) weren't shining examples of stability and bulletproof implementation, either. Bugs have always been a problem. As software becomes more complex, the volume of bugs rises proportionally.

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As software becomes more complex, the volume of bugs rises proportionally.

Which means that the priority and resources given to patching bugs quickly and efficiently needs to rise, too, and I'm not sure I see that happening. Any PC gamer expects to encounter bugs, especially when buying a game that's only recently been released. It's the price we pay for cheap PCs. However, if the games industry is to prosper and grow, it needs to expand the market and reach people who are not traditionally gamers, and these newcomers are going to be even less tolerant of bugs than the rest of us.


"An electric puddle is not what I need right now." (Nina Kalenkov)

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I know there is nearly imposible to expect a game to come out perfect.

 

I happens with Blizzard's and Bioware's games an they are in my opinion the developers that go all the way to lock after their games.

 

I know that developers have to stop putting things in after a certain point, but It gaming developement is clearly a field were creativity and ambition should be the forces shapping the work.

 

I just play games, I don't make them, but like with movies I know when I'm satisfied and want to congratulate somebody for their work.

 

I didn't feel this way with Bloodlines and KOTOR II, this were to me 2 games that didn't cross the finish line.

 

But on simple tecnical point of view - I will chalenge any developer from Obsidian or anyone else to play "Dungeon Lords" and honestly conclude that is was a finish game, ready to go for sale.

 

I think that with any business, a company stands out when it doesn't waist the chances that come their way. KOTOR II wasn't the best start for Obsidian, It looked like it was going to reach the moon and then give up when it was leaving the Earth atmosfere.

 

I chance to stand tall was miss. I hope that NWN 2 will be all that it can be.

 

:luck:

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I will admit I have altogether stopped buying games on the first day or preordering. I


Life is like a clam. Years of filtering crap then some bastard cracks you open and scrapes you into its damned mouth, end of story.

- Steven Erikson

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Most newly released games have bugs, not all have game stoping ones, but most do still have bugs. This is not a problem so long as the developers are allowed to create patches to fix what is wrong in their game. Latley it seems that game publishers are...less willing to allow game deveopers to create patches for games...which is not cool...

 

buh...my mind has just failed...so I'll shut up now.

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I will admit I have altogether stopped buying games on the first day or preordering. I

image002.gifLancer

 

 

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Most newly released games have bugs, not all have game stoping ones, but most do still have bugs. This is not a problem so long as the developers are allowed to create patches to fix what is wrong in their game. Latley it seems that game publishers are...less willing to allow game deveopers to create patches for games...which is not cool...

 

buh...my mind has just failed...so I'll shut up now.

 

 

Yes.. but the main problems that some games like V:tM and KOTORII suffered from had nothing to do with bugs or patches. In the former's case it had more to do with performance issues even if you had a system which exceeded the minimum specs. And KOTORII was a big disappointment again not so much because of bugs, but because it was half-a$$ed the last third of the game.

 

In games like Fallout, Fallout 2, and even Arcanum you can ascribe many problems to bugs but with KOTORII and V:tM that excuse alone just doesn't cut it. Bugs might be part of it but the main reason why those games felt less polished is a different one altogether.

 

I agree with the original poster about recent RPGS feeling more rushed than ones out even a couple of years ago. What has been going on?


image002.gifLancer

 

 

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There's another more fundamental smart reason to wait before purchasing a game.... Prices go down.  :luck:

true :D


Life is like a clam. Years of filtering crap then some bastard cracks you open and scrapes you into its damned mouth, end of story.

- Steven Erikson

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Baldur's Gate, Fallout, Darklands, The Magic Candle, and Pool of Radiance (the original and the newer one) weren't shining examples of stability and bulletproof implementation, either.  Bugs have always been a problem.  As software becomes more complex, the volume of bugs rises proportionally.

... And, software is not like most other products in that the fixes are non-trivial, and proportionate to the complexity of the code with the bugs ... many times there are regression bugs released with patch updates, and this becomes more frequent when there are multiple versions of the code stream in production at any one time (which is frequently the case with larger developers).

 

Version control becomes paramount; prevention of error at the methodological stage, before the code has been complicated with new bugs, or older code (with older bugs) is used by those fixing newer bugs (in a different code development stream).

 

Another reason why smaller companies have an advantage, as their development streams are inherently less complex and therefore less prone to regression bugs, also the code ownership is a lot broader in relation to the game development as a whole, making it more personable to the developers (IMO).

 

I think this will be another driver towards smaller, more episodic games using a regular online digital delivery system, like Steam.


OBSCVRVM PER OBSCVRIVS ET IGNOTVM PER IGNOTIVS

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OPVS ARTIFICEM PROBAT

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Which means that the priority and resources given to patching bugs quickly and efficiently needs to rise, too, and I'm not sure I see that happening.

I think you mistook "need to" for "should". If it were a matter of necessity, this conversation wouldn't have emerged.

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I think you mistook "need to" for "should".  If it were a matter of necessity, this conversation wouldn't have emerged.

 

 

 

...atta split hairs, Josh...no wonder yer gettin' paid the big bucks... <_<

 

 

...WHO LUVS YA, BABY!!...


A long, long time ago, but I can still remember,
How the Trolling used to make me smile.
And I knew if I had my chance, I could egg on a few Trolls to "dance",
And maybe we'd be happy for a while.
But then Krackhead left and so did Klown;
Volo and Turnip were banned, Mystake got run out o' town.
Bad news on the Front Page,
BIOweenia said goodbye in a heated rage.
I can't remember if I cried
When I heard that TORN was recently fried,
But sadness touched me deep inside,
The day...Black Isle died.


For tarna, Visc, an' the rest o' the ol' Islanders that fell along the way

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I think you mistook "need to" for "should".  If it were a matter of necessity, this conversation wouldn't have emerged.

I mean "need to", although refering to a long term rather than an imminent need. As the complexity of games and the volume of bugs increase, I foresee the tolerance for bugs decreasing. As you yourself pointed out, increasingly games are being played by busy working people for shorter periods, and these people are less prepared to spend five hours installing and uninstalling drivers and patches and editing the .ini files and emailing tech support and scouring the tech-help forums and so on that we often have to do in order to get games to work properly.


"An electric puddle is not what I need right now." (Nina Kalenkov)

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I think all of us just need to take a deep breath, and go back into time to 1998. Compare your bug problems of kotor II or Bloodlines to Descent to Undermountain. After comparison I think you


Life is like a clam. Years of filtering crap then some bastard cracks you open and scrapes you into its damned mouth, end of story.

- Steven Erikson

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Two points

 

1) The problem you mention is real. But it is hardly confined to games. It affects everyone form the stock market to the military. I think it is referred to as the 'Software Crisis' officially, and as the 'Techie/Marketing/Customer Balls Up' by me. It's a complex issue that project managers go to three day seminars on, so I'm not goingto pretend I can sum it up here. Basically, competition feeds tighter and tighter schedules that lead to unrealistic planning and implementation. This clashes with the marketing gibbons, and the whole thing lands on the user's foot with a resounding crash.

 

2) I'm going to keep hammering on about this until one of you shoots me. Quality games attract quality gamers. A gamer who wants more than instant 'headshot!' gratification will allow for bugs, and can cope with patches. Nurture those gamers, appeal to them, and you have a much more robust and reliable fanbase, who will not abandon you if a game comes out buggy.


"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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There is a lively debate in engineering periodicals about the "Software Crisis". It runs along these entrenched lines:

 

Q. If the FAA can quantify the useable lifespan of a spot weld or a screw in an aircraft frame to the sixth decimal place, why can't the same be done for software?

 

A. Because software is complex, and adding one piece of code to "fix" a problem in a particular area does not preclude the same new piece of code perverting a totally other piece of code in a different area.

 

As always, better standards will limit errors; there are those (primarily in the former camp) who insist that, in order for Computer Science to not be a misnomer, these standards need to be enforced with reliable regularity and efficacy.

 

I sit closer to the former than the latter, although it is by no means a modular state (pun not intended). :D


OBSCVRVM PER OBSCVRIVS ET IGNOTVM PER IGNOTIVS

ingsoc.gif

OPVS ARTIFICEM PROBAT

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Kotor 2: Incomplete and a few bugs that didn't get fixed in the latest patch. WTF??? Good thing for modders who can fix this sh!t.

 

Bloodlines: A finished product but buggy. I think those guys didn't do a great job testing on this. It's a good game after you get the patch.

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Baldur's Gate, Fallout, Darklands, The Magic Candle, and Pool of Radiance (the original and the newer one) weren't shining examples of stability and bulletproof implementation, either.

 

I remember having great fears for Baldur's Gate after the FO2 release was so buggy, but really it was pretty good. As was the original POR, from memory.

 

A few minor bugs/incorrectly implemented spells etc are not really a problem. The problem is when you get major bugs that either:

 

1. Are game-breaking - eg: the bug in Vampire that basically meant it was impossible to continue without doing some major hacking, which is beyond the capabilities of a lot of players who will simply give up at that point.

 

2. Are so frustrating and annoying that they seriously impact the enjoyment of the game - eg: the FO2 car problems or the NPC encumberance problem in TOEE.

 

Somewhat annoying is when it is obvious that a game was rushed out due to missing storylines/plots or areas that seem to have been designed in a rush (often the final levels!). KOTOR2 is a good example of this problem - where it was possible to exhaust the dialog options of many of the party NPCs and the final levels were rather spartan and uninteresting compared to some of the earlier ones.

 

However as Feargus once said, I believe, "Games are only released, never finished!".

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However as Feargus once said, I believe, "Games are only released, never finished!".

He did? A wise man indeed.


I was raised by polar bears. I had to fight against blood thirsty wolves and rabid penguins to get my food. Those who were too weak to survive were sent to Sweden.

 

It has made me the man I am today. A man who craves furry hentai.

So let us go and embrace the rustling smells of unseen worlds

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The problem you mention is real. But it is hardly confined to games. It affects everyone form the stock market to the military. I think it is referred to as the 'Software Crisis' officially, and as the 'Techie/Marketing/Customer Balls Up' by me. It's a complex issue that project managers go to three day seminars on, so I'm not goingto pretend I can sum it up here. Basically, competition feeds tighter and tighter schedules that lead to unrealistic planning and implementation. This clashes with the marketing gibbons, and the whole thing lands on the user's foot with a resounding crash.

 

 

The marketing/economist head not listening to the techie body until the whole thing comes crashing down.. :thumbsup:"

 

 

 

And youve got companies like LA who know that people will but their franchise titles regardless of bugs so they dont care if theyre selling finished products or not.


DISCLAIMER: Do not take what I write seriously unless it is clearly and in no uncertain terms, declared by me to be meant in a serious and non-humoristic manner. If there is no clear indication, asume the post is written in jest. This notification is meant very seriously and its purpouse is to avoid misunderstandings and the consequences thereof. Furthermore; I can not be held accountable for anything I write on these forums since the idea of taking serious responsability for my unserious actions, is an oxymoron in itself.

 

Important: as the following sentence contains many naughty words I warn you not to read it under any circumstances; botty, knickers, wee, erogenous zone, psychiatrist, clitoris, stockings, bosom, poetry reading, dentist, fellatio and the department of agriculture.

 

"I suppose outright stupidity and complete lack of taste could also be considered points of view. "

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The only rational answer is that we form a crack commando unit and hunt the pigs down, using wolverines and pepper foggers.


"It wasn't lies. It was just... bull****"."

             -Elwood Blues

 

tarna's dead; processing... complete. Disappointed by Universe. RIP Hades/Sand/etc. Here's hoping your next alt has a harp.

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Dont forget about the rabid marmots, they will bring great terror and calamity to the sinners..

 

 

 

(btw, was that a pink floyd reference?)


DISCLAIMER: Do not take what I write seriously unless it is clearly and in no uncertain terms, declared by me to be meant in a serious and non-humoristic manner. If there is no clear indication, asume the post is written in jest. This notification is meant very seriously and its purpouse is to avoid misunderstandings and the consequences thereof. Furthermore; I can not be held accountable for anything I write on these forums since the idea of taking serious responsability for my unserious actions, is an oxymoron in itself.

 

Important: as the following sentence contains many naughty words I warn you not to read it under any circumstances; botty, knickers, wee, erogenous zone, psychiatrist, clitoris, stockings, bosom, poetry reading, dentist, fellatio and the department of agriculture.

 

"I suppose outright stupidity and complete lack of taste could also be considered points of view. "

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Baldur's Gate, Fallout, Darklands, The Magic Candle, and Pool of Radiance (the original and the newer one) weren't shining examples of stability and bulletproof implementation, either.  Bugs have always been a problem.  As software becomes more complex, the volume of bugs rises proportionally.

 

The problem with KotOR 2 is more than just bugs. The game was unfinished. Also the game was buggy on a console. A console is a stable platform to develop for and far far far far far easier to test than a PC since a PC tends to use mismatch hardware.

 

I don't want a bulletproof game. I want a finished working game. If Obsidian cannot deliver tell me now and I'll buy someone else's games.


Harvey

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