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Videogames: All Valves on Deck


IlyaP
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30 minutes ago, Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II said:

Yeah i was referring to the new final fantasy trilogy that Square has been working on - Remake and Rebirth. They seem like a good starting point. Not gonna play 20+ year old games guys, i only do that for KoToR replays :P

You're also going to not understand some of the narrative twists taking place in FF7: Remake without playing the original FF7, as it's not a 1:1 remake, but...something....else. (I'm obviously trying to not spoil anything here, because that's a jack move, and it's worth going into both blind to the ways in which they play with time, narrative, structure, and exploration.)

It's also a weird position to take as a gamer, of "I'm not gonna play old games! Nyar! I'ma twist mah moustache!" like, sure you...can? But...that's pretty weird to not check out the games that influenced so many games and were foundational in their genres, the way BG1/2 were for isometric cRPGs, Diablo 1/2 were for aRPG, Betrayal at Krondor for open world cRPGs, Doom for FPS, Deus Ex for immersive sims, Chrono Trigger for JRPGs (which influenced everything from Anachronox to BG3, in terms of its multiple endings, different gameplay mechanics/styles, and even NG+, which all started with a young boy who just wanted to go to the local fair), etc. It'd be like saying you're willing to play Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, but not Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind because there's too much text to read (a legit complaint I've heard in the past). 

Like, sure you can just play new games, and maybe you're just trollin' for lulz, but like, dude, you're missing out. Chrono Trigger also (arguably) popularised combination attacks in RPGs, and showed how to write villains with pathos and nuance in a videogame. It is a literally ground-breaking game. It is, for want of a better word, The Lord of the Rings of the genre, in a way, for so, so many people.

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It’s like the difference between old movies vs old video games…I can watch older films quite easily cause the medium hasn’t essentially changed (other than effects) and dosent require me to say , focus/work harder to derive the same enjoyment out of it as say the people in the 1940s did to watch Citizen Kane.

 

But older video games require either - 1) Nostalgia trip for people who grew up with them 2) Fan boy love for that IP to get through the older clunky interface, lack of new age graphics etc. at least I need to focus a lot harder to play them-to the point where it feels like a chore.

However, Kotor fulfilled both of the above criteria for me (I didn’t grow up with it but it hasn’t aged as badly as other early 2000s games.

Like I could still go and play a session of road rash cause I grew up on that game but If I wanna try to get into a new franchise, especially of a genre I’m not hugely keen on ( I prefer WRPGs ) I’d wanna try the latest,most accessible iteration of it. If I enjoy this I may go back in time, like I’m currently doing with Divinity after BG3. Also this new remake trilogy has got a lot of critical acclaim so far so that also caught my interest.

 

If I need to play the older ones to understand the narrative then obviously it’s a genuine problem.

 

Infact I haven’t played Morrowind or Obvlion btw but have played Skyrim for some of the same reasons you mentioned…I do prefer full voicing and better graphics in an RPG ,who would’ve thought ! 

Edited by Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II
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None of the above had (or have) bad interfaces or graphics, and all of them are constantly being updated by fans (eg Morrowind Graphics Extender, Deus Ex: Revision, the recent remaster of Chrono Trigger, etc.)

It's become easier than ever to play these classic games. And between the numerous mods on Moddb and Nexusmods, it's easier than ever to update the textures, skyboxes, models, and more (as has been the case, for example, with the amazing work that the fan modding community has put into KotOR 2, for example.).

That said, graphics aren't everything, and painterly, or cartoonish, stylised, etc., graphics, are to many far more pleasing than hyper-realistic, uncanny valley stuff, as the former has a style its own that ages better than the latest "hyper-real fx!" that feel dated and rubbery within a few years. 

Which is to say, horses for courses and de gustibus non est disputandum, as always.

Anyway, those older games are terrific, dude, and a lot of fun, and work on modern systems. Hell, Chrono Trigger's remaster even got brand new 1080p cutscenes, a modern control scheme, updated UI, graphical updates, and more - not unlike the recent Quake/Quake 2 remasters. You're missing out on some terrific games that won't tax your system and are full of ingenuity and heart!

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Even when I play games out of nostalgia I think I can still get an idea of how well it's aged.

For example I played Age of Empires recently and I think it's aged terribly. The AI is horrible and the single-player missions are mostly frustrating to the point where you wonder what the designers were thinking.

Warcraft II and StarCraft: Brood War on the other have have aged very well IMO. Still very playable with solid mission design and a manageable interface.

I haven't played Baldur's Gate 1/ 2 or Fallout 2 in awhile but I would think they've aged well. The isometric interface doesn't rely heavily on graphics.

 

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I can promise you guys one thing- if someone can do a total conversion mod for BG1 and BG2 using BG3s engine (assuming Larian provides the neccessary modding tools) i will play the heck out of them, no matter the lack of voice acting !  Also i prefer turn-based to RTWP (IlyaP is gonna kill me lol ) 

Edited by Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II
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I think Rodrigo has a fair point. The reality is that most games from 20 years ago, especially in the early days of 3D, have not aged well, and it's not comparable to cinema, except for perhaps early uses of CGI. Many RPGs from the time period are also far more tedious and simply have terrible UI. I'm able to go back and play some games that I loved from back then - Morrowind, FF7 and 9, the N64 Zelda games -  especially if there's a modern update of them. But I find it impossible to get into any game from the early 3D era that I don't have nostalgia for. Baldur's Gate 2, for example: the interface is terrible and it's not at all intuitive how to do even the most basic things. Even some games I do have nostalgia for, like KOTOR 1 and 2, are just too dated for me enjoy now. I tried playing KOTOR 1 again this summer and the voice acting alone made me bounce off it.

That's in contrast to the SNES era of games: many of those games do hold up really well. I would never recommend someone wanting to try out Final Fantasy the original FF7. But I'd still be willing to recommend FF6.

Edited by Caligula_K3
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46 minutes ago, Darryk said:

Even when I play games out of nostalgia I think I can still get an idea of how well it's aged.

For example I played Age of Empires recently and I think it's aged terribly. The AI is horrible and the single-player missions are mostly frustrating to the point where you wonder what the designers were thinking.

Warcraft II and StarCraft: Brood War on the other have have aged very well IMO. Still very playable with solid mission design and a manageable interface.

I haven't played Baldur's Gate 1/ 2 or Fallout 2 in awhile but I would think they've aged well. The isometric interface doesn't rely heavily on graphics.

 

Strange, I find Starcraft: Brood War unplayable specifically because of it horrible pathfinding AI which they refused to fix even in the remaster. And there is no reason to play the original Age of Empires II when the infinitely superior Definitive Edition exists.

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1 hour ago, Jace, Extat said:

What's wrong with the voice acting in KotOR??? 

Y'all're some odd ducks. 

Nothing against the actors who do major characters like Bastila, though not all of them are up to that standard. But the voice acting for most non-companion NPCs is done by like four actors. And not particularly good actors. Example:

Combine that with the really not fun combat and I found it a slog to get through the game again, even on easy mode.

This isn't me trying to say that KOTOR wasn't a great or groundbreaking game for its time. But someone who hasn't played it is going to have a real hard time appreciating it now.

Edited by Caligula_K3
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Boy you weren’t kidding of setting everything on fire in DOS2, I’m also scared of doing any AOE spells at all, as even with my allies well away from the blast radius they still get shocked or burned by the after effects, it’s really frustrating. The combat is ALOT tougher than BG3 cause of the bullshit armour system, lack of easy way to revive companions, lots of limiting game mechanics etc. pickpocketing is also nerfed with you only being allowed to do it once with appropriate skills. I’ve noticed this games systems are a lot more restrictive than BG3, other than the bedroll healing. Also I heard you get locked out of 2 companions after act 1 which is just crazy….

 

That being said, the story and world building is quite gripping, the quests seem just as fun as BG3, the visuals, music and VA are top notch (other than lack of cinematic cutscenes) and looting is fun as hell. Other than that dwarf I find all the characters interesting as well. Though there dosent seem to be as much banter and dialogue with them as BG3. Playing as Ifan myself.

I definitely prefer the dice roll probability of success of BG3 over the binary results of DOS2 though 

Edited by Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II
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15 hours ago, Caligula_K3 said:

Nothing against the actors who do major characters like Bastila, though not all of them are up to that standard. But the voice acting for most non-companion NPCs is done by like four actors. And not particularly good actors. Example:

Combine that with the really not fun combat and I found it a slog to get through the game again, even on easy mode.

This isn't me trying to say that KOTOR wasn't a great or groundbreaking game for its time. But someone who hasn't played it is going to have a real hard time appreciating it now.

I played it recently and thought it aged pretty well. The combat gets a lot more satisfying once you start powering through enemies with your lightsaber.

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6 hours ago, Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II said:

Also I heard you get locked out of 2 companions after act 1 which is just crazy…

They rejoin the party early in Chapter 2, mid-way through a ship sequence, so the above isn't exactly accurate. 

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It's not...I struggle to think of it as a spoiler, since the game makes it clear from the get-go that part of your goal is to get off the island - which would logically involve a ship. And at some point you've got to get off the island - otherwise the game would be extremely short. 

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23 hours ago, Ser Rodrigo Belmonte II said:

 

But older video games require either - 1) Nostalgia trip for people who grew up with them 2) Fan boy love for that IP to get through the older clunky interface, lack of new age graphics etc. at least I need to focus a lot harder to play them-to the point where it feels like a chore.

 

 

Obviously if you don't like the graphics you don't like them- although I don't think it's true that liking old graphics has to be just a nostalgia thing. But in terms of the clunky interfaces etc, I would say this is generally less of an issue with JRPGs than other genres. 

 

Also a lot of old JRPGs are getting full graphical remakes and updates that aren't 3-part complete reworkings of the story. Star Ocean 2 got one recently that I wanna play, although it's gonna be a while since I have several JRPGs already in the backlog, including 3 I've started. Should really take advantage of my current holiday to dig into one of them properly. Sea of Stars, Live A Live (a remake as well) and Chained Echoes, one of them. 


But I'm not because Haiku the Robot- a little metroidvania that looks like an obvious Hollow Knight tribute act in its sword-bouncing action and 'ruined world' premise but actually has equally much in common with Metroid once the movement options start getting unlocked- was on sale. It's neat. 

 

eta: also, I'm fully expecting Chrono Trigger to get a 2DHD remake within the year- to launch alongside Switch 2. 

Edited by polishgenius
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18 minutes ago, IlyaP said:

It's not...I struggle to think of it as a spoiler, since the game makes it clear from the get-go that part of your goal is to get off the island - which would logically involve a ship. And at some point you've got to get off the island - otherwise the game would be extremely short. 

You know im actually suprised you beat DOS2 but are struggling a bit with BG3s combat. Man the combat here makes BG3 look like a fucking fable game! 

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