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Luridis

I figured it out... Why RPGs seem to be going down hill.

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Only reason why it went downhill is because players don't want to read anymore and so the games have catered to this public.

Oh please. Let's stop this immature, petty, kindergarten crap.

 

Yes because your post is full of awesome grown up logic... Edited by archangel979

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What I don't understand is why everyone says games that use a type of axonometric projection are dead. D3 used it and sold well, and RPGs have been using that kind of thing all the way back to the first Zelda, etc. Top down, 3rd person, isometric, etc. views are completely doable for console systems. No one playing RTS games seems to think that kind of view is on its way out, but RPG's seem to be focusing more and more on FPS style interfaces.

 

I'd love to see D3's graphics quality and engine smoothness combined with mechanics on the order of KoTR, NWN1, NWN2, etc. Heck, I wouldn't mind if they left out the parts that just really wouldn't work on a console. You can make a game for console and PC where the RPG mechanics aren't reduced to remedial levels.

D3 is not really a good example of anything. And good sales do not equal a good game. It equals good marketing. And in D3 case, good Blizzard reputation. But Blizzard **** on themselves with D3. Their reputation went down the drain after D3 even if it sold well (I bought it but I wish I didn't).

 

 

I liked the engine's smoothness and graphics quality. I liked little else about the game.


Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt. - Julius Caesar

 

:facepalm: #define TRUE (!FALSE)

I ran across an article where the above statement was found in a release tarball. LOL! Who does something like this? Predictably, this oddity was found when the article's author tried to build said tarball and the compiler promptly went into cardiac arrest. If you're not a developer, imagine telling someone the literal meaning of up is "not down". Such nonsense makes computers, and developers... angry.

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", reflecting its realism and inspiration in the middle age "

 

There's nothing 'realistic' about it. It's a damn fantasy game.


DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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Do you think that maybe it could just be personal taste? Personally, I've seen complex and even well done games I didn't like simply because it was not to my personal taste.

 

Look at Volourn, clearly hard to please on all counts: mechanics, story, writing, etc. But, there's nothing really wrong with that. If you're going to invest a lot of your time in something, why not do with something you really like? I'm still waiting for a 4x game as good as Master of Orion 2, and it has been nearly 20 years since that was released.

 

Personally, I'm not saying let's ditch console development, or stop making casual focused games, just that it would be nice to see something further out on the edge. My hope is that development is just in an expensive place at the moment. Perhaps as better tools and engines come out, it will reduce the need to focus on mass appeal. Imagine if a whole new generation of 3D modeling tools came out that allowed game artists to produce models 8x faster.

I believe I mentioned it.


"I started to see people as little lonesome, water based, pink meat, life forms pushing air through themselves and making noises that the other little pieces of meat seemed to understand...I don't think I was 'mad', I was just confused."

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There's nothing complex about the Twitchers. NOTHING. Not story wise, not character wise, not writing wise, non gameplay wise. NOTHING.

R00fles'c0pters.

"I started to see people as little lonesome, water based, pink meat, life forms pushing air through themselves and making noises that the other little pieces of meat seemed to understand...I don't think I was 'mad', I was just confused."

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Only reason why it went downhill is because players don't want to read anymore and so the games have catered to this public.

Oh please. Let's stop this immature, petty, kindergarten crap.

 

Yes because your post is full of awesome grown up logic...

 

Well, it IS very condescending to say "players don't want to read". It's also a huge blanket statement used to further ones belief that they are a "True Gamer" or whatnot.

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Only reason why it went downhill is because players don't want to read anymore and so the games have catered to this public.

Oh please. Let's stop this immature, petty, kindergarten crap.

 

Yes because your post is full of awesome grown up logic...

 

Well, it IS very condescending to say "players don't want to read". It's also a huge blanket statement used to further ones belief that they are a "True Gamer" or whatnot.

 

And it is even worse so call someone a kid. At least my statement was not pointed at a certain person.

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Yes it was. Don't hide by generalizations.

Edited by Volourn

DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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Yes it was. Don't hide by generalizations.

No it wasn't. I don't care for specific people, but I care that general public likes easy games with all VO. As a result we no longer can have nice things. Well, not totally true now that KS has brought back some of these games, but I want more than only a few.

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", reflecting its realism and inspiration in the middle age "

 

There's nothing 'realistic' about it. It's a damn fantasy game.

..still, I suppose you could say that the Witcher universe is more grounded in modern medieval middle-European history than most other fantasy settings. In the sense that the pagan folklore from the period - Sapkowsky I think is pretty obvious about this - is retold with a modern spin with the themes and the politics and so on. But in a setting in terms of locations, how armies work, how the kings rule, and and things of that sort that actually is fairly accurate historically. Or, that it's set in a fairly authentic historical setting where the folklore from the area is made real.

 

Which makes the Witcher fairly unique, and different from the more common kind of medieval myth spun from works like Alighieri's Dante and Beowulf, for example, from judeo-christian story-telling tradition. Since the Witcher is inspired by folklore and traditions that existed at the time more than the obviously more known and read historical fiction people tend to associate with "medieval" times.

 

Other than that the Witcher universe is complete fiction, of course. But it's probably useful to have that distinction in the back of the head when enjoying that work. Between pagan folklore that typically wasn't written down (though it still survives in some respects today), and the "medieval" judeo-christian fiction and myth that typically is the foundation for almost all modern fantasy settings. 


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", reflecting its realism and inspiration in the middle age "

 

There's nothing 'realistic' about it. It's a damn fantasy game.

Any fantasy setting can potentially be realistic within its own context.  Dragons can exist in a setting that has dragons; Dragons cannot exist in SplinterCell ~its own fantasy setting of a sort. Witcher can have trolls and stay realistic in context... but Witcher cannot have those same trolls [with thumb in mouth] suddenly inflate themselves like a balloon and float off into the sky, nor could Geralt pull a Glock hand gun out of his satchel and shoot them down with it; these would be unrealistic in context. 

Edited by Gizmo

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Okay, this has gotten too serious in places, time for something funny.

 


Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt. - Julius Caesar

 

:facepalm: #define TRUE (!FALSE)

I ran across an article where the above statement was found in a release tarball. LOL! Who does something like this? Predictably, this oddity was found when the article's author tried to build said tarball and the compiler promptly went into cardiac arrest. If you're not a developer, imagine telling someone the literal meaning of up is "not down". Such nonsense makes computers, and developers... angry.

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Nostalgia has a tendency to enhance and glorify older experiences, which may create the illusion that things are getting worse. However, many of the older RPGs were also boring experiences with stupid repetitive mechanics, lousy stories, pitiful character interactions, and, of course, limited graphics and sounds. It's just that we were willing to put up with them back then because all we had were less capable computing systems and the experience was all so much newer.

 

Then how do you explain my case? I only started playing games like the Baldur's Gate series, Planescape: Torment and TES: Morrowind around 3 to 4 years ago yet I consider them the best games I've played so far. Those games have inherent quality, a quality that supersedes the ever evolving aspects like graphics. "Nostalgia" is nothing but an excuse.

 

The backbone of RPG is STORY

 

The narrative, in any shape or form, is a very important element in a role-playing game but it's not the "backbone", it's not what makes the genre unique. The core of a role-playing game is in the name of the genre itself: Role-playing. Playing a role is achieved through simulation, and how well a game can simulate something in turn contributes to the role-playing. The whole genre can be represented by a single question: What if I was...? And how well the answer to that question is simulated in turn contributes to the quality of a role-playing game.

Edited by Marcvs Caesar

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The narrative, in any shape or form, is a very important element in a role-playing game but it's not the "backbone", it's not what makes the genre unique. The core of a role-playing game is in the name of the genre itself: Role-playing. Playing a role is achieved through simulation, and how well a game can simulate something in turn contributes to the role-playing. The whole genre can be represented by a single question: What if I was...? And how well the answer to that question is simulated in turn contributes to the quality of a role-playing game.

 

I mentioned that earlier as well. The narrative can be told by more than just words, music, atmosphere, mechanics, animation & artwork, etc. Also, narrative can include story or, in the case of some really good games, the story can be a diversion from, or even antithetical to it. I think when we feel like we're not being told the whole story, or that NPCs are lying to us, that it is a sort of subconscious realization what's actually happening.

 

I remember watching Shutter Island with my sister and in the opening scene where he's riding a ferry to the island I shouted, "Damn!" My sister inquired and I said, "My mind just spoiled the ending for me." She of course didn't want to know, but ask me afterward what clued me in. I said, "He didn't carry his own smokes. He needed a light too, at the second occurrence I knew. Institutions hold on to that stuff for you, if they allow it at all."

Edited by Luridis

Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt. - Julius Caesar

 

:facepalm: #define TRUE (!FALSE)

I ran across an article where the above statement was found in a release tarball. LOL! Who does something like this? Predictably, this oddity was found when the article's author tried to build said tarball and the compiler promptly went into cardiac arrest. If you're not a developer, imagine telling someone the literal meaning of up is "not down". Such nonsense makes computers, and developers... angry.

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The backbone of RPG is STORY

 

The narrative, in any shape or form, is a very important element in a role-playing game but it's not the "backbone", it's not what makes the genre unique. The core of a role-playing game is in the name of the genre itself: Role-playing. Playing a role is achieved through simulation, and how well a game can simulate something in turn contributes to the role-playing. The whole genre can be represented by a single question: What if I was...? And how well the answer to that question is simulated in turn contributes to the quality of a role-playing game.

 

 

What role to play when there is no story? It is like your everyday life, you don't play any role, your life have no story. The story can be anything, what important in RPG is what is your role in that story. That is why it is the backbone, if the backbone is weak then that RPG is weak, if the backbone is strong, then that RPG is strong

 

Every heroes and villains have their own story, even the story is not about heroism, maybe it just a story about a kid who make his school proud because he manage to create something to be proud of. That is his story.

 

In term of RPG, no one want to play a nobody who just wander around doing nothing isn't it? it's much like our everyday life. We are nobody in the society and just doing our routines. To become somebody, we must pick up a role...

 

You now the game Dreamfall:The Longest Journey? I can say it's the longest boring journey. The story is ok actually, it's not an RPG, its an adventure game, i just mention this as example. First we play as a girl who is boring with her life and have no aim, she have a boyfriend who is a reporter, suddenly her boyfriend is missing. She is going to find out what happen. She also have premonition about a strange girl. Everything lead to an evil company want to release mind control machine through virtual reality game. She must stop them. In the mean time, she gets into a dream world. She have missions. She failed all the missions except one, find the mystery girl who turn out to be her sister. At the end of the game i said, "what he hell", in my language. In that game, you are destined to fail all your objectves except that one. You end up in comatose.

 

I search on internet, turn out to be everybody is complaining the same thing, making the developer have to release a sequel explaining what happen in previous game. However, it's totally a turned off for me.

 

The same thing happen in DA2 where Hawke failed at everything, and then going missng.

 

I don't mind about bitter end, or not "live happily ever after", but such thing need a strong story, very strong in which make the player feel worth playing and spend time to. In above case, i asked myself, why i am playing these games?

Edited by Qistina

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"In term of RPG, no one want to play a nobody who just wander around doing nothing isn't it?"
 

No. they want to play adventurers going around exploring, killing monsters, collecting ph@t lewt, and levelling up their characters. That's the RPG basics. That's the trope and for good reason.

 

\A good story is just a bonus.

 

If a good story was what made RPG genre popular, PST would  have been a top 5 seller.

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DWARVES IN PROJECT ETERNITY = VOLOURN HAS PLEDGED $250.

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What role to play when there is no story? 

 

You do know that combat is a part of this mythical “role-playing” that’s supposed to exist in RPGs, right? You can fight like a fighter, hide in shadows/pick locks with your thief, cast spells with mages, priests etc...

 

Didn't mean to also quote you, Caesar.

Edited by bussinrounds

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Nostalgia has a tendency to enhance and glorify older experiences, which may create the illusion that things are getting worse. However, many of the older RPGs were also boring experiences with stupid repetitive mechanics, lousy stories, pitiful character interactions, and, of course, limited graphics and sounds. It's just that we were willing to put up with them back then because all we had were less capable computing systems and the experience was all so much newer.

 

Then how do you explain my case? I only started playing games like the Baldur's Gate series, Planescape: Torment and TES: Morrowind around 3 to 4 years ago yet I consider them the best games I've played so far. Those games have inherent quality, a quality that supersedes the ever evolving aspects like graphics. "Nostalgia" is nothing but an excuse.

 

I suppose to me it's more that some of the old games (things like Tie-Fighter, Fallout, Xcom in a sense, to take a few different variants) took narrative and story-telling in a game seriously, in a way that most games didn't until then. And later on still haven't. So it's not that they were perfect works of art - but some of these games had at least an approach to interactive narrative. Or made a stab at creating an immersive narrative around the player with some thought.

 

I.e., Tie-fighter with the way the missions hang together in a larger story, but that you only see glimpses of it, and only from the point of view of the tie-fighter pilot. Meanwhile, you're gradually transformed from a completely faceless trooper and into flying wing for the dark lord, if you choose to pursue the hidden objectives and advance in the order, etc. And that's one way to wrap a linear story around the player so they feel they have agency.

 

I-War had a similar one - that half the story is you, the captain of a ship, flying around the universe and interacting with things. I mean, who could possibly see the appeal in that, right..? It's not like that's going to spawn several seasons worth of tv-series :p

 

Xcom has a different approach again. Basically, there are a million details and variables that keep getting recorded in the background that maps your behaviour. And the alien AI player then responds to that, often in such an organic way that many people start to think they're playing against a pretty intelligent opponent. It's moving in stages and things of that sort of course. But many of the events will take place as responses to things you do, or to counter specific types of tactics. So that's another way to create an interactive narrative over even a fairly simplistic plot. (That of course unfortunately was not present in any way in the reboot).

 

Meanwhile, in Fallout you have all kinds of events written in different locations, with thousands of dialogue lines and options on how to move through the different situations. With conditions that nest very deeply to other scenarios and related choices, as well as just to the specific scenario. So yet again a completely different stab at creating interactive fiction.

 

But in either case, there was this attempt to create interactive fiction in a way that used the unique options you have when you have a player taking part in the fiction.

 

So even when games with very good writing in them turn up now - like the Tomb Raider reboot, for example - it's usually only approaching the Tie-fighter angle, really. With telling a linear story from the first-person perspective - except it doesn't really understand how to entice the player into actually wanting to immerse themselves in the role they're given. And Mass Effect and Dragon Age ends up in that approach as well, because they always have writing that follows a particular pattern, given very solidly by the writer for the particular segment. You're never actually asked to, or tricked into believing, that you're now making any groundbreaking choices that will come back to haunt you. Because it's still moving on a reel from location to location, very specifically and very obviously. 

 

And that's something we've seen very few exceptions to lately. I guess ... Rise of the Argonauts, maybe is a weird but interesting example. Because they take it seriously that you're not really role-playing Jason and doing whatever you want. But that you're more exploring what Jason thinks and are trying to figure out what his/your motivations are in the situations he runs into. So then you end up with something different compared to Mass Effect, where you don't really have choices, but where you're given options to pick the colour of the light at the ending, etc. And always only inside a specific segment that, counterintuitively to the design, is isolated from the rest (save the hub-areas).

 

Because that approach is basically turning Shepard into a narcissism-automat - the only real driver in the story is that the player is put in confrontation after confrontation, where the world instantly revolves around what you pick during the next 2 seconds. Before your companions then respond to you in some way before they forget about it forever. There are exceptions, like the companion quests in ME2, and the asteroid mission in ME1. But they are far and few between, frankly.

 

I think that it's unfortunately a bit too common for officially proclaimed gamers to be very fond of that gamey approach as well. Where you're given "choices" that  are "meaningful" and "important" as the only real driver in the narration. And frankly, I think that a lot of gamers give that approach a pass exactly because of nostalgia. Because they associate something with that interface and those mechanics that new players, or people who just like interactive fiction, don't see.

 

And they don't see it because the writing really is abysmally bad. And we're essentially back in the good old days again, when bad video-game writing is a genre in itself, because it's just there as an excuse to get the mechanics rolling. About half-way removed from Nintendo's "Story" sheet across the screen in the Mario games.

 

I mean, we can talk a lot about personal preference. But "I like this, end of discussion" doesn't make something equal to "good writing that has depth and relevance to different people in different ways". It just means that you enjoy something, and that you don't care why. That's not a problem as such, but people really shouldn't use that as an argument for why something is written well. At most then you can say "I like that bit, because of such and such". But saying that "I like this, so this is the most we can ever expect to see from games", is a bit offensive. To developers, to writers.. to other gamers as well..


The injustice must end! Sign the petition and Free the Krug!

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What role to play when there is no story? 

 

You do know that combat is a part of this mythical “role-playing” that’s supposed to exist in RPGs, right? You can fight like a fighter, hide in shadows/pick locks with your thief, cast spells with mages, priests etc...

 

Didn't mean to also quote you, Caesar.

 

 

Is Call of Duty an RPG?

 

I said, story is the backbone of RPG, which part you don't understand?

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Many confuse between "Role Playing" and "Game Mechanic"

 

Warrior, Mage, Thief and everything from these are game mechanic, character classes. Few games really making you play the role of these classes, mostly it just a cosmetic by means your role in the game is nothing about your character class

 

Example, DA have a mix of game mechanic and role where they make a Mage class is also a role, in DA Mages are born as such, so you pick up a Mage class you also pick up your role. However, in DA:O, your role as a Mage is very little, only in the origin, later your role is one of the last surving Grey Warden in Ferelden. Other classes have no significant with your role in that world.

 

In Skyrim, no matter what build you choose, it is NOT your role in the world, your main role is the last Dragonborn, your optional role is depended on whatever faction you joined.

 

In Oblivion, your role is a messenger, later a support hero. Similar like Skyrim, your optional role depended on faction you joined. Your classes is not your role in that world

 

In KotOR, your role is a Jedi. In KotOR 2, your role is a broken Jedi

 

In Diablo, your role is an adventurer who decide to help destroy the evil. Your classes is not your role in that world.

 

Role Playing is playing a ROLE, not playing classes

Edited by Qistina

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On the note of narratives... Can we please get beyond "Zombie Apocalypse" already? As fiction goes, it's unrealism is on the level of Superman, even though it's often attributed to various kinds of disease. Super fast and super powerful yet starving most of the time, yea ask a Tiger or Cheetah about that... What happens if it misses one too many chances at prey when it has been some time hungry. Great physical strength and speed in nature require energy, and lots and lots of it. Fancy 70 lbs of T-Bone anyone?


Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt. - Julius Caesar

 

:facepalm: #define TRUE (!FALSE)

I ran across an article where the above statement was found in a release tarball. LOL! Who does something like this? Predictably, this oddity was found when the article's author tried to build said tarball and the compiler promptly went into cardiac arrest. If you're not a developer, imagine telling someone the literal meaning of up is "not down". Such nonsense makes computers, and developers... angry.

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I haven't seen many zombie apoc. rpg's. More like action/sandboxes.

 

Maybe not entirely on-topic, but I feel as if a small part of the issue is that these days it seems like "everything" is an rpg. That is, people are calling all kinds of games rpg's that I would never. The term is becoming so all-encompassing as to be almost meaningless.... :lol:

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“Things are as they are. Looking out into the universe at night, we make no comparisons between right and wrong stars, nor between well and badly arranged constellations.” – Alan Watts

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I haven't seen many zombie apoc. rpg's. More like action/sandboxes.

 

Maybe not entirely on-topic, but I feel as if a small part of the issue is that these days it seems like "everything" is an rpg. That is, people are calling all kinds of games rpg's that I would never. The term is becoming so all-encompassing as to be almost meaningless.... :lol:

 

The way people understand is they have an avatar to play, therefore it's an RPG

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I was following the topic of narrative... ;)

 

More Lovecraft please. And no, slenderdork and pyramid heads don't count, even if they share a genre. And for it to be truly Lovecraft, the end can't be the player besting villain. The options are to survive it, join with it, or realize it was you all along. I've seen people try to sell things like the unlikely underdog (think Frodo) as Lovecraft-like. "But it was so much more powerful than our little train that could, and he won by pure luck, a dagger in the Achilles heel." Nope... Sorry, he won, you can't win in a Lovecraft theme, no matter how unlikely, lucky or hapless the protagonist. Finally, the more baffling and haunting it is after the fact, the better.


Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt. - Julius Caesar

 

:facepalm: #define TRUE (!FALSE)

I ran across an article where the above statement was found in a release tarball. LOL! Who does something like this? Predictably, this oddity was found when the article's author tried to build said tarball and the compiler promptly went into cardiac arrest. If you're not a developer, imagine telling someone the literal meaning of up is "not down". Such nonsense makes computers, and developers... angry.

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Part of the problem is that developers (and many players) don't seem to understand what separates RPGs from action games.

 

In an action game, my character is just an avatar for my skills and abilities. In a game like Doom, for instance, Doomguy's ability to aim and hit the demons is based on MY aiming ability with the mouse and MY reflexes. He cannot succeed or fail independently of the player.

 

However, in an RPG, my character is a completely separate entity from me, the player. In any given situation, my character's success or failure depends on HIS skills, HIS abilities, HIS strengths and weaknesses...NOT mine. In Fallout, for example, if I direct the Vault Dweller to attack someone with a pistol, whether or not he hits an enemy is based on his agility, his skill with firearms, the enemy's armour, the enemy's ability to evade, and so on. My "twitch skills" never come into play.

 

This is why RPGs have character stats. They are way of defining the player character independently of the player, allowing the game world to react based on his qualities. Without them, you do not have a character, just an avatar for your own skills. You could try pretending to be your character, but the game won't care, because your character has no defined characteristics for it to react to.

 

Consider a tabletop game. When my character goes to attack a dragon, whether or not he succeeds isn't dependent on my ability to whack the DM over the head with a plastic sword, but on my character's skills.

 

This is why "actionising" RPGs is such a mistake, as it blurs the distinction between the player and his character. In Skyrim, I played a character who had the lowest possible Archery skill. In other words, his stats defined him as someone who couldn't hit the broad side of a barn with a bow. Yet because I had good aim with the mouse and keyboard, my character was a veritable sharpshooter. In another instance, I could pick the hardest locks despite having abysmal skill in Lockpicking, just because I was good at the lockpicking minigame. In both cases, player skill trumps character skill. And THAT is poor RPG design...because an RPG isn't about you, the player, but the character whose role you are assuming.

 

"RPG" is one of the most abused acronyms in gaming. Mass Effect 2 is the worst example. It was sold as an RPG, despite being nothing more than Gears of War-style third-person shooter with a dialogue wheel. Sure, there's XP and levels, but Shepard kills an YMIR mech at level 2, which are some of the toughest enemies in the game, meaning that all the levelling system does is let you kill the same enemies more quickly. "Dialogue" and "choices" don't make it an RPG, because A: those have been featured in numerous adventure games (Monkey Island comes to mind), and B: ME2's dialogue and choices are so shallow that you could remove them and the game would play almost exactly the same...which is precisely what ME3 allowed you to do.

 

And as I've said before, "actionising" RPGs isn't because it makes them better, or because it's any sort of "evolution." It's done because the large publishers believe that only shooters and action/adventure games will sell.

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"There is no greatness where simplicity, goodness and truth are absent." - Leo Tolstoy

 

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