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New Dragon Age discussion thread


Monte Carlo

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I'm a grown-up gamer too who enjoys RTS and RPGs, but that doesn't mean I want to play through a 100 hour game. Does that make me now a console kiddie?

 

Seriously, who knows how linear DA will be. They haven't really talked about the world size much yet, so perhaps there're some pleasent surprises. After all, this game is supposedly made for the BG/NWN crowd in mind, so perhaps there's more meat to it. But I doubt it will be 100 hour meat.

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They've been making their games tighter and tighter, and lighter on content, too. It seems to be due to technical progress. There's only so much content you can make when every line is voiced, and when your platform barely renders the gameworld, much less the actors to populate it.
That.

 

Both ME and MotB are average games, for somewhat different reasons but the design of both is mediocre. I have higher hopes for DA though, it seems to me they put a lot more effort into it, and certainly they thought the world through very deeply. Also it's being developed for the PC first, so hopefully hardware constraints won't be much of an issue, and the writers promise the game is huge, but not as huge as BG.

"Moral indignation is a standard strategy for endowing the idiot with dignity." Marshall McLuhan

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I'm a grown up gamer who enjoys RPG's and strategy games, and I just don't have the time for 100 hour games.

 

But I also don't have to complete games to enjoy them. I probably won't beat DA. I didn't beat the NWN games or BG2, but I played them enough to warrant the purchase.

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I'm a grown-up gamer too who enjoys RTS and RPGs, but that doesn't mean I want to play through a 100 hour game. Does that make me now a console kiddie?

 

I think the word 'some', italicized for emphasis, was the clue there.

 

I'm not expecting 100 hours from DA. OTOH, I'd like to think that there is are developers out there who would still give it a go. I'll be generous and include replayability - I've had several hundred hours out of MTW2 and probably a few months from BG2 over the years. DA is suitable for modding so who knows?

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Phooey.

 

They're making their games as long as the story makes sense. There's no need to artificially extend it by having additional grinding or sandbox style walks.

 

What do you mean, "artificially extend" it? What exactly about, say, BG2 is "artifically extended", unless you be a realism nazi and argue that you should go for Irenicus straight away? Are you saying that they write the story at the very start and say, "this is how long our game will be"? What? Stories like Bioware's (and I say that without pejorative connotations) are very mutable. I haven't played much of ME, but if you wanted to extend, say, KOTOR's story you could easily have fleshed out a few hoops you jump through or add an extra twist or relevant side material and it would have benefited the game. Same with JE. I guess not with NWN1 OC, because there wasn't enough story in there to justify a five minute skit anyway, but still.

 

Nobody's gonna play a 100 hour game these days.

 

You have "console kiddies" in the literal sense (young console lovers, love Halo, love GoW, etc) that burn +60 hours into Oblivion happily, so I'm afraid this is a farcical claim. Have you seen the number of hours burned on a Final Fantasy game, as well? In a discussion about a single high-profile RPG game, this is irrelevant.

 

They've been making their games tighter and tighter, and lighter on content, too. It seems to be due to technical progress. There's only so much content you can make when every line is voiced, and when your platform barely renders the gameworld, much less the actors to populate it.

 

This is actually right on the nail, I think. You could very obviously see their games become a lot tighter post BG2, which is understandable - you can't make a BG2 after BG2, it would be insane. But by JE and ME it had gone to quite considerable degrees, for better or for worse.

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Honestly, am I the only bloke who couldn't care less about extensive VO?

 

The odd BG1-style comment is enough for me: give me content, tangible, playable, interactive content. That's far more immersive than a voice actor doing every line. And, on a more serious note, it's hugely time consuming. DA might well be 100 hours after you've sat through every bloody cutscene and piece of Fakespeare VO.

 

I've said it before - Devs, if you want to make movies, make movies. Not games. If I want a cinematic experience I'll go to the cinema, thanks.

 

Cheers

MC

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"You have "console kiddies" in the literal sense (young console lovers, love Halo, love GoW, etc) that burn +60 hours into Oblivion happily, so I'm afraid this is a farcical claim. Have you seen the number of hours burned on a Final Fantasy game, as well? In a discussion about a single high-profile RPG game, this is irrelevant."

 

I don't think such "console kiddies" (Halo, Oblivion, GoW freaks) are even the target market for Bioware. You can play 100 hours Halo 3 MP matches if you want, but doing a 100 hour story-driven RPG is suicide these days.

 

"What do you mean, "artificially extend" it? What exactly about, say, BG2 is "artifically extended""

 

BG2 was hardly artificially extended, as it had plenty of interesting side quests to do. Again, this was possible due to the less complex production process (art assets, animation) and much less VO. With "artificially extended" I mean Oblivion/Gothic style gameplay, something that Bioware never made. Please stop reading between the lines.

 

Edit: I'm happy with the direction Bioware has gone with DA. It's a modernized form of BG if you want. Let the old BGs and PS:Ts finally die, you old grumpy crooks!

Edited by Morgoth
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How can someone not have time for a 100 hour game? That's like saying I don't have time for a 500 page book.

 

AN entertainment takes as long as it takes. There's no reason to have to rush through anything. Even if you only play one single hour a day, 100 hours will be done in a little over three months.

 

WHat''s the difference if you play one game or three games for those three months? As long as you are enjoying yourself.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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Honestly, am I the only bloke who couldn't care less about extensive VO?

 

 

VO is a waste of time. A lot of people turn subtltles on anyway. I know I always do. Plus most VO sucks.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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"Edit: I'm happy with the route Bioware has gone with DA. It's a modernized form of BG if you want. Let the old BGs and PS:Ts finally die, you old grumpy crooks!

 

Why?

 

If we accept that games are / have becoming / become a valid cultural phenomenon (which I do, gaming culture and memes are now firmly part of the cultural mainstream), not unlike books or movies, then they all build on what went before. Then the wheel turns, and what went before actually becomes fashionable again. This is why marketing people always invoke the spirit of the classics (in literature, music, art and just about everything else). A couple of years ago trendy London restaurants went mad about 1970's food. Oasis think they're The Beatles. Quentin Tarantino is making a movie that sounds like the Dirty Dozen (made in 1969). Everybody is loving Marvel comics superheroes. And so on.

 

It is inevitable that a ridiculously old-school RPG will eventually be released at the mainstream market, polished a bit, but aimed at grognard gamers ("see what the fuss was about in 1997 d00ds!"). Look at hex-based wargames. Cottage industry, loved by a tiny but loyal minority who remember the SPI games of yesteryear. I'd be happy with a low-tech, high-content CRPG version of that developing one day, which it will.

 

I know there's that cliche about those forgetting their past not deserving a future (yadda yadda) but there's an element of truth to it. Sometimes less is more, and games are no different.

 

Cheers

MC

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How can someone not have time for a 100 hour game? That's like saying I don't have time for a 500 page book.

 

AN entertainment takes as long as it takes. There's no reason to have to rush through anything. Even if you only play one single hour a day, 100 hours will be done in a little over three months.

 

WHat''s the difference if you play one game or three games for those three months? As long as you are enjoying yourself.

Comparisons with reading books is silly. I can set the pace for reading a book on my own, and I can read a book everywhere I want (train ride, in my bed etc.).

 

Games however, I don't play tiny 1 hour per day bits, especially not RPGs. That's not my preference. I can play a FPS maybe 1 hour the day, that's okay, but when a major RPG (from bioware or Obsidian) gets released, I usually have to schedule much time for it. At some point, it has to end. I prefer seeing the end of a game and be happy instead of getting overwhelmed by sheer (mostly useless) content until I lose sight. Again, my play habits have changed over the years.... and I'm certainly not the only one, as the whole industry moves towards shorter, but richer game experiences. And that doesn't give you the right to insult someone as inferior "console kiddies".

Edited by Morgoth
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"Edit: I'm happy with the route Bioware has gone with DA. It's a modernized form of BG if you want. Let the old BGs and PS:Ts finally die, you old grumpy crooks!

 

Why?

 

If we accept that games are / have becoming / become a valid cultural phenomenon (which I do, gaming culture and memes are now firmly part of the cultural mainstream), not unlike books or movies, then they all build on what went before. Then the wheel turns, and what went before actually becomes fashionable again. This is why marketing people always invoke the spirit of the classics (in literature, music, art and just about everything else). A couple of years ago trendy London restaurants went mad about 1970's food. Oasis think they're The Beatles. Quentin Tarantino is making a movie that sounds like the Dirty Dozen (made in 1969). Everybody is loving Marvel comics superheroes. And so on.

 

It is inevitable that a ridiculously old-school RPG will eventually be released at the mainstream market, polished a bit, but aimed at grognard gamers ("see what the fuss was about in 1997 d00ds!"). Look at hex-based wargames. Cottage industry, loved by a tiny but loyal minority who remember the SPI games of yesteryear. I'd be happy with a low-tech, high-content CRPG version of that developing one day, which it will.

 

I know there's that cliche about those forgetting their past not deserving a future (yadda yadda) but there's an element of truth to it. Sometimes less is more, and games are no different.

 

Cheers

MC

I see DA exactly to be this re-awakened, fashionable classic of the BG era again - but in a modernized, tighter and more progressive form.

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MC:

Honestly, am I the only bloke who couldn't care less about extensive VO?

 

Actually, it's *really* grating when you play NWN2 OC or MOTB, then play mods that use the same kind of 'cinematic' dialogue angles but no VO. I think we've really come to expect it to be there, however mediocre - so if someone has grown up with that, I imagine it will irk.

 

Morgoth:

I don't think such "console kiddies" (Halo, Oblivion, GoW freaks) are even the target market for Bioware. You can play 100 hours Halo 3 MP matches if you want, but doing a 100 hour story-driven RPG is suicide these days.

 

Where did I compare it to 100 hour Halo 3 MP matches? Ironically you appear to be labouring under the imaginary delineation between the pew-pew console kiddie and the RPG-player. People do play Halo AND Oblivion. People do play Wii Tennis then put 100 hours into Zelda as well. People do buy WWF Wrestling along with Final Fantasy. You can't expect anyone to accept blanket comments like 'suicide' that seem to be taken straight from journospeak when you aren't responding to what I am claiming and put no reasoning behind your argument.

 

BG2 was hardly artificially extended, as it had plenty of interesting side quests to do. Again, this was possible due to the less complex production process (art assets, animation) and much less VO. With "artificially extended" I mean Oblivion/Gothic style gameplay, something that Bioware never made. Please stop reading between the lines.

 

My point is that you made the claim that Bioware's games are not short, they are only as long as the story needs them to be, without linking that argument to the discussion on more complex production processes (which in fact was argued by Pidesco). In other words, you appeared to directly link the increasing shortness of Bio games to the needs of the story. If that is nto what you had intended, then I think we see eye to eye on this at least. :(

 

Edit: I'm happy with the direction Bioware has gone with DA. It's a modernized form of BG if you want. Let the old BGs and PS:Ts finally die, you old grumpy crooks!

 

I'm pretty happy with DA, but again, why borrow from journospeak without thinking it through? Consoles are not full of people who refuse to play 100 hour games. Conventions of an earlier era are neither inferior nor superior to modern ones as a rule, and are not guaranteed to fail or succeed. You can paste in words like 'modernised' and 'progressive' if you like, but I balk at any suggestion that games follow a linear progression of awesome.

 

Games however, I don't play tiny 1 hour per day bits, especially not RPGs. That's not my preference.

 

Plenty of people are happy to do this, though, so this is irrelevant.

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No getting to you, huh. :(

 

I could try and explain myself again, but I think everything is already up there, and if you don't look at it as selectively as you have been, that will suffice as a reply.

 

VO is a waste of time. A lot of people turn subtltles on anyway. I know I always do. Plus most VO sucks.

 

I always wondered what BG1/2 would be like without those partial voiceovers. I think it really helped, because they were able to get some great VO for that limited number of lines, then you could easily extrapolate yourself.

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I'm too tired for this angry chit-chat anyway. Drink Onko, be happy.

 

DA will be as long as the story needs to be. That could be 10 hours, that could be 20 hours, that could be - ACHTUNG - 100 hours! Yes, I'd play even that. But unless you got an army of David Gaiders, it will be unlikely.

Edited by Morgoth
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Speaking of David Gaider...

 

You know, I always liked him. He's a good writer, even if he sticks like glue to the straight-ball fantasy formula unashamedly (and he admits it). But, uh, this was very odd.

 

Warning: terrible KOTOR fan fiction

 

I guess this is why he doesn't go gung ho.

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How can someone not have time for a 100 hour game? That's like saying I don't have time for a 500 page book.

 

AN entertainment takes as long as it takes. There's no reason to have to rush through anything. Even if you only play one single hour a day, 100 hours will be done in a little over three months.

 

WHat''s the difference if you play one game or three games for those three months? As long as you are enjoying yourself.

 

For starters, I'm not sure it takes 100 hours to read a 500 page book. Depending on the writing style, I think it might take me 20 hours, and I'm a fairly slow reader. Plus, books that I finish usually have an engaging central plot that propel the story forward. There just aren't a lot of games that have that. And I agree with Morgoth that books are a much easier form of entertainment to doll out in small increments. I can read in my car, or lunch break, or wherever and feel comfortable with that. Getting into a game requires a good deal more for me. I have to remember exactly how to play. I don't have to spend a couple moments remembering how to read every time I open a book. It's not completely intuitive. It's definitely not something I do before bed to wind down.

 

And what makes you think I have a single hour every day to play? I don't, most nights I'm lucky if I get my daughter into bed and have twenty minutes to myself before I have to get to sleep myself. For a lot of games, that just doesn't cut it. So I go a full week between a game session quite often, and sometimes after a full week away I feel like I've lost touch with the game story and gameplay. And at that point, it's easy to just stop playing altogether.

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How can someone not have time for a 100 hour game? That's like saying I don't have time for a 500 page book.

 

AN entertainment takes as long as it takes. There's no reason to have to rush through anything. Even if you only play one single hour a day, 100 hours will be done in a little over three months.

 

WHat''s the difference if you play one game or three games for those three months? As long as you are enjoying yourself.

 

For starters, I'm not sure it takes 100 hours to read a 500 page book. Depending on the writing style, I think it might take me 20 hours, and I'm a fairly slow reader. Plus, books that I finish usually have an engaging central plot that propel the story forward. There just aren't a lot of games that have that. And I agree with Morgoth that books are a much easier form of entertainment to doll out in small increments. I can read in my car, or lunch break, or wherever and feel comfortable with that. Getting into a game requires a good deal more for me. I have to remember exactly how to play. I don't have to spend a couple moments remembering how to read every time I open a book. It's not completely intuitive. It's definitely not something I do before bed to wind down.

 

And what makes you think I have a single hour every day to play? I don't, most nights I'm lucky if I get my daughter into bed and have twenty minutes to myself before I have to get to sleep myself. For a lot of games, that just doesn't cut it. So I go a full week between a game session quite often, and sometimes after a full week away I feel like I've lost touch with the game story and gameplay. And at that point, it's easy to just stop playing altogether.

 

 

The only time I have to play a game is right before I go to bed. Maybe thirty minutes to a couple hours most nights. It took me well over a month to get through Far Cry 2 (the most recent game I've played). I didn't seem to have any problem keeping the continuity going over that time; games aren't exactly complex narrative texts. Oblivion took me 4 or 5 months to finish.

 

 

Unless you have to meet a minum quantity of games finished within a limited number of hours, there's no good reason why you can't spend 100 gaming hours on one game rather than on 5. And its cheaper as well.

 

 

As far as the 500 page book goes, I wasn't trying to equate 500 pages directly to 100 hours of time. My point was that not liking a game because it has too many hours of gameplay is like not liking a book because it has too many pages. It's a silly way to judge either.

 

If you have 100 hours of fun gameplay, is that bad thing? Whether it's in one game or five?

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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I'm pretty sure DA was initiated on Bioware's behalf. They have a lot of autonomy within the EA group, so I don't think this decision (full VO) was forced upon them.

 

They planned to have full VO (save for the PC) before EA even bought them.

 

And saying "nobody wants to play 100 hour games any more" might be true of some console-addicted twitch gamers, but it certainly isn't true of the sizeable numbers of grown-up gamers who like strategy and RPG titles.

 

Your

"When is this out. I can't wait to play it so I can talk at length about how bad it is." - Gorgon.

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The only problem with 100-hr games is when they're full of filler crap used to artificially lengthen them. Otherwise, a bad game can't maintain my attention, whether it's 100 or 5 hrs long.

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The only problem with 100-hr games is when they're full of filler crap used to artificially lengthen them.

 

No argument there. Liking a game simply because it is 100 hours plus is just as silly as disliking it because its 100 hours plus.

 

 

 

Otherwise, a bad game can't maintain my attention, whether it's 100 or 5 hrs long.

 

 

This.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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I'm a grown up gamer who enjoys RPG's and strategy games, and I just don't have the time for 100 hour games.

Could you please explain to me what this means?

 

Does it mean you only have time for one more game in your life and your life is not expected to last 100 more hours?

Does it mean you only have time for one more game before hanging up your gamer skates for good and 100 hours is too long because you're in a hurry to retire?

Does it mean that you have a limited amount of hours left to play in your life and you'd rather spend them on ten ten hour long games instead of one 100 hour long game?

Does it mean your wallet explodes unless you get to fork out 10x$50 (for 100 hours of playtime) instead of 1x$50 (for that 100 hour game)?

Does it mean you have to play it from beginning to end in one sitting and 100 hours would most probably kill you?

 

Seriously? You don't have time for a 100 hour game? Do you have time for ten shorter games (8-10 hours each)? Don't you expect to play 100 more hours of games in the remainder of your life? Do you expect to be buying any more games in the future? Don't you think they'll all add up to more than 100 hours sooner or later?

 

Please enlighten me.

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My point was that not liking a game because it has too many hours of gameplay is like not liking a book because it has too many pages. It's a silly way to judge either.

 

I misunderstood you as well then.

 

Right now, I have Erikson

"When is this out. I can't wait to play it so I can talk at length about how bad it is." - Gorgon.

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