Sign in to follow this  
octavian

.264

Recommended Posts

The lighthouse. Not just any lighthouse, a lonely lighthouse. Because how else do you write a lighthouse post Levine if not lonely? I mean, I'd be lonely too if all I did was look at the clouds roll under the end of the world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

is there a point to your post? apart from the nice scene? just asking?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You know what's like a church? Perfume. I remember one time I was wearing Amouage Jubilation for women and someone told me I smell decidedly "churchy". Just like a church, she felt the need to "elaborate". Which told me her nose probably got damaged in a horrible smelling accident.

The point was, it smelled churchy to her. So I grabbed her hand and dragged her to the nearest, darkest, moldiest, church. It was the kind of hot summer evening when sweat runs down everything you have and the kind of old church in the russian-orthodox style sandwiched between a Starbucks and a glass curtain wall office building.

Nobody was inside, as you would expect, and we sat down, in silence. After a while, she leaned over, smelled, leaned back, smiled, we sat some more, in silence still, then we left, but not before we bought some candles to light and put in the appropriate "dead" and "alive" boxes.

We didn't really know what it all meant but we played along. Basic manners told us we should pay the church for the quiet and coolness it gave us by buying some overpriced, not subjected to any kind of tax, candles. It was effortlessly colder than any public air-conditioned place in the city; and there were no millennials anywhere in sight. There wasn't anybody in sight, except the two of us.

So we bought the overpriced candles, and by bought I mean, took some, and left behind some sweaty bills as per our judgement and value of money. We joked that maybe the church door is a portal to an alternate dimension. In a way, there are many other people inside but God has God-like manners; everyone gets a different dimension. Just so they can be alone. God didn't even ask what our religion was; I mean, God must have known already. And since God knew what we learned to keep to ourselves, our religion, or lack thereof, God was what we expected; didn't really care if we are in the wrong church or not, or if we believe in God at all. We could still go in and at the very least look around, smell the place, stay a while. No bolt of lightning struck us down, although we may be on the eternal fire and brimstone list. Even so, God trusted us with the candles and the money, and didn't ask anything of us. Which was, you know, nice.

So we went to the "dead" and "alive" boxes, candles in hand, lit them, and slid them down into the holes; many candles were there already. So it seemed that whatever that ritual meant, a lot of people were concerned about the dead and living in a place like that. And maybe, not only in a place like that.

Then again, it could have been just like with Santa; maybe everybody did what we did: played along. But, I mean, even if we don't believe, some do believe. And if it weren't for us, there would be less lit candles there in the boxes, and less candles would just not seem right. You go to the box, you expect to see lots; only a few free holes, somewhere in the back, so you have to singe yourself a little. It's just the way it's supposed to be.

Also, you could see candles in all possible stages, in both boxes. Some just snuffed, smoke rising, some half-melted, thinking of falling over. Some caked the bottom, like bones in a mass grave, some as freshly lit as ours. In one place, there was a twisted, mangled mess; some slumped candles melted others.

I thought if it would be appropriate or not to address that issue but before I could find an answer I was happy with, I addressed the issue, started to move some and straighten others. She looked at me and I looked at her, she understood.

She forgot her purse on the seat. I stayed behind, looking at her going back, looking at her butt frankly, thinking, maybe that was God understanding a moment back, maybe she was God, at that time, in that place. Looking at God's butt like that, I thought that, if I'm made in God's image, God understands. And, ultimately, it's all a matter of perception; maybe God was lost and wanted to go to church but didn't know how to say it.

Apparently, the real church didn't smell anything "like a church", with me still smelling "churchy", she said. Which all it means is that the smell of a church isn't necessarily the smell of a church, and, more often than not, people are a kind of Rorschach test in themselves.

Having said all this, the church in TLD isn't anything "like a church" either. Which, after this story, I hope makes sense. What a shame, just another place to loot.

96x96-BillTarling.thumb.jpg.d62832a712c4

_church2.thumb.jpg.e48300843b62280414a09

biserica_rusa.thumb.jpg.a263bc55b23ec292

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Post moved to General Discussion

Why? Was I too subtle with my OP?

Sure. Let me rephrase.

After all that polish, all we get is a couple of meters of ice before the end of the world, which is just "there", and looks awkward, this seen from one of the, supposedly, landmark locations. This is my feedback. In any case, it doesn't matter where this topic is on the forums.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Seriously, what do you want to be there? Cheerleaders?

Yes. Also, more ice. Just so the world doesn't just end right "there". More ice, like in CH. And cheerleaders, obviously.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't feel the church looks to bad. If this was a whaling community, it would have roots from the what 1700s to the 1900s. Something of this style in a small hamlet would not be out of place, especially for the period. I am not sure why the back corner of the building has not collapsed considering the car sized hole at the supporting corner... but I am not an engineer.

BTW, I liked your story about the perfume. :) I could do without the cheerleaders. Singing whalers/pirates may be a better choice. Sort of a Moby Dick meets One Piece. :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I liked all of the additions. I just wanted to say I enjoyed reading the posts, particularly the church story.

The perspective was either creepy, insane or insightful, not sure yet. Either way it was an interesting read.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, to end with the church and move to other locations, isn't it sad how the windows are completely missing? What happened was, the window gremlins came, and stole them.

Because otherwise, they would be there, maybe, on the ground, broken, but there. You could step on the shards and the sound of walking on glass would come out. Magic. :o

But I guess that's too costly to implement.

Also, its location just boggles the mind, doesn't it? Why would you have it there? Who builds a church in a place like that? What is happening? :?

The only real place it could have fit was the middle of Coastal Townsite. If you want, you can have a graveyard in DP, sure, but a church there? Hidden on a hill. A place of worship, on the edge of the community. Sure.

To conclude, yes, that hole, let's just punch a hole through the building. What made that hole? What also took the windows and the door.

Oh, and the circular windows with holes in them, they're the same model, the exact same thing, just rotated. So they knew, they knew. Hey, we better rotate this, wouldn't want anyone to notice. Sigh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
@Spottdrossel: can you re-post what you said in this topic so I can answer you there? I don't want to derail this thread. That's my general .264 thread. We can talk about anything there. Thanks.

So here we go:

Same with the scrap metal balance. There's really no point arguing, after the months Hinterland put in this update? All those developers and testers, it's not something that can go unnoticed. It's simply the way they want the game to be. So what, we're telling Raphael there's too much scrap metal? Do you honestly think he doesn't know the amount of scrap metal available? Again, the update was pushed back for balance and polish. So what are we talking about here? Why would they release it if they weren't happy with the current state of the game?

So let's just judge .265 at face value and consider everything as intended. Do we have any information that desolation point went live in a state that was not intended? Was there an official statement to this effect? No.

There are plenty of examples of critical bugs (as in players losing items or even whole savegames), unintended item properties (still remember the initial weight of a single rose hip?) and design flaws (e.g. the resetting of the filter every time you opened your inventory).

V.264 and V.265 have their bugs - even when the release was pushed back by 3 weeks (announced as needed for bugfixing and polishing). I'm sure there will be a V.266 next week.

So I don't think that every aspect of the result is the way they wanted it to be.

Sometimes that's because Hinterland weren't aware of all the implications themselves and other times because they didn't find a bug and let it go into public.

When you say that you believe that this current state is exactly what Hinterland want today, does that include the glitching wolf? Does it include respawning items whenever you load a savegame inside the Quonset Gas Station or making Fishing Tackles without consuming items?

So why should it be impossible for them to not realize that some resource is so plentiful that it is virtual irrelevant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
When you say that you believe that this current state is exactly what Hinterland want today, does that include the glitching wolf? Does it include respawning items whenever you load a savegame inside the Quonset Gas Station or making Fishing Tackles without consuming items?

In a way, yes. They could have pushed back the update even more. Fix the bugs. Could they afford to do that? Obviously not. So they released what they had. So in a way, yes, this is exactly what they want. They want to keep releasing, bugs and all, and fixing as they go. There isn't enough money to do otherwise. There are bugs since forever that have been reported numerous times which still aren't fixed. So it would make no point to hold back .264 since there are bugs since .244 still. Makes sense? It's not that they "want" it, but it is what it is.

The glitching wolf, that's just common sense. Wolf in an interior, pilgrim difficulty, it will glitch itself out the map. It wants to run, but it has no place to go. Interior map. Again, common sense. How hard is it to figure this kind of thing out? Really, you don't even need to play the game. It's just basic logic and knowing how wolves AI works. You can get it if you fight it too but that's harder to do, obviously.

But, as far as me the player is concerned, they are making .264 go live, not me. And I can't believe they don't know what they release. So, yeah, I think what goes live is, obviously, what they want to make available to the player, and essentially what they want the player to experience. If you're unsure, you could wait. Besides, you "know" bugs "are a thing". They're not like a Christmas miracle or something.

So why should it be impossible for them to not realize that some resource is so plentiful that it is virtual irrelevant.

Well, first of all, what are we talking about here? Some random bug impossible to reproduce? No. Scrap metal has become entangled with forging now, and forging is one of the major additions to the game in .264, right? Along with harvesting scrap. So it only goes that it's on the top of your list to test, the damned big mechanic that is introduced. Right? At least, that's how I see it.

Besides, how long did it take "us" to raise the issue? Couple of hours? One day? Two? They had how many months to test .264? Devs, testers, scout corps. It's literally impossible for issues like this to go unnoticed. So, the only logical explanation I have is, it's how they want it to be.

For me .264 is desolation point, but it seems most people are

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your thoughts, as always. The topic of technical issues aside, it's always interesting to hear how players interpret the design embedded in the game and the story it may or may not be suggesting. What do >you< think went on at the whaling station?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
When you say that you believe that this current state is exactly what Hinterland want today, does that include the glitching wolf? Does it include respawning items whenever you load a savegame inside the Quonset Gas Station or making Fishing Tackles without consuming items?

In a way, yes. They could have pushed back the update even more. Fix the bugs. Could they afford to do that? Obviously not. So they released what they had. So in a way, yes, this is exactly what they want. They want to keep releasing, bugs and all, and fixing as they go. There isn't enough money to do otherwise. There are bugs since forever that have been reported numerous times which still aren't fixed. So it would make no point to hold back .264 since there are bugs since .244 still. Makes sense? It's not that they "want" it, but it is what it is.

The glitching wolf, that's just common sense. Wolf in an interior, pilgrim difficulty, it will glitch itself out the map. It wants to run, but it has no place to go. Interior map. Again, common sense. How hard is it to figure this kind of thing out? Really, you don't even need to play the game. It's just basic logic and knowing how wolves AI works. You can get it if you fight it too but that's harder to do, obviously.

But, as far as me the player is concerned, they are making .264 go live, not me. And I can't believe they don't know what they release. So, yeah, I think what goes live is, obviously, what they want to make available to the player, and essentially what they want the player to experience. If you're unsure, you could wait. Besides, you "know" bugs "are a thing". They're not like a Christmas miracle or something.

So why should it be impossible for them to not realize that some resource is so plentiful that it is virtual irrelevant.

Well, first of all, what are we talking about here? Some random bug impossible to reproduce? No. Scrap metal has become entangled with forging now, and forging is one of the major additions to the game in .264, right? Along with harvesting scrap. So it only goes that it's on the top of your list to test, the damned big mechanic that is introduced. Right? At least, that's how I see it.

Besides, how long did it take "us" to raise the issue? Couple of hours? One day? Two? They had how many months to test .264? Devs, testers, scout corps. It's literally impossible for issues like this to go unnoticed. So, the only logical explanation I have is, it's how they want it to be.

For me .264 is desolation point, but it seems most people are

[attachment=0]cheer.jpg[/attachment]

about it, so that's good.

In a way I agree with you.

They released it, so this better be what they wanted.

It doesn't look like some random bug, but a quite "mechanical thing".

Still I think, some bugs never get found by testers and that's not because those bugs are so hard to find.

Sometimes the only explanation I can offer is that testing happened poorly.

The example with the wolf is spot on. I have no idea how and why such things can happen.

All I can testify is that people are sometimes incredibly stupid, shortsighted and refuse to think ideas through. Sometimes it takes a piece of paper and meticulous work to spell out all the implications of a decision. I believe not many people are willing to do that kind of work these days.

Pushing back the release of V.264 would have been possible IMO.

People were cheering when the initial plan of "end of august" was ditched because of "improvements".

The premise of "it's been coming along really well" with the conclusion of "and we're going to take a little more time to polish and test it" felt strange (try telling your boss that you need more time because work is progressing so well) but people were hyped with "bug-fixing".

So I guess adding another week was totally on the table.

However I don't think this would have helped. The number of unfixed, reported bugs is increasing.

Things like bad translations, floating icicles and items, undeveloped ideas (books) are receiving little to no attention.

Wolf button mashing isn't even a big topic any more and thus isn't receiving attention as well.

I guess this is the intersection of what is desired and what is possible and I'm sure that the 2(?) remaining major updates before the story mode will not change much about the current course.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
People were cheering when the initial plan of "end of august" was ditched because of "improvements".

That'e exactly why DP is a slap in the face of all people like me that put 17 hours a day, every day, in the game, because we believed it would be what we always hoped for. It wasn't meant to be.

Wolf button mashing isn't even a big topic any more and thus isn't receiving attention as well.

Yeah, people just gave up, like they always do. None of the big players and voices are ever around to make themselves heard and give support when it really matters.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What do >you< think went on at the whaling station?

We had this talk before Patrick, it doesn't work that way. :)

Doesn't matter what I think. All it matters is what Marianne Krawczyk tells me happened at the whaling station, what story she delivers; I can make up my own stories without having to play TLD.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, people just gave up, like they always do. None of the big players and voices are ever around to make themselves heard and give support when it really matters.

That is the fundamental flaw in Early Access.

There is no way for people to get heard and receive exactly the product they want by participating.

The only way would be to make their own game.

It has been stated from the start that Hinterland wasn't trying to build the game the players wanted, but the one they wanted. This is what is happening.

The only conflicting item was taking in feedback, telling everyone "thanks for your feedback. the dev team will consider it" and then going on doing what was planned anyway. But this is a business after all. You need customers to buy your product and most businesses try to look like they're listening to their (potential) customers.

TLD will inspire more games like it.

One of those will be more like what you envisioned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There is no way for people to get heard and receive exactly the product they want by participating.

I don't think that's the issue. It isn't in my case for sure. It's not about receiving the product "we" want by participating. The point is to comment on what "they" deliver.

TLD will inspire more games like it.

One of those will be more like what you envisioned.

It's not about that either. It's not like I have something in my head and I'm waiting around for someone to make it. I don't envision anything in particular, not even in a certain genre.

Let's look at Amnesia's Steam description.

"An experience that will chill you to the core."

Have you played Amnesia? Have you been chilled to the core? And, if I may ask, where is your core? Can you point at your core? Show me your core. Is the core not naturally chilled? What is the baseline temperature of the core? Does the temperature of the core vary from person to person? What if my core is chilled to begin with, what then?

This may seem as me abusing language, but, as a writer, I have been butt ****** by my teachers every time one of my characters din't have a clear desire. Why? If you're writing Ash, and Ash "wants to relax", when in the **** is Ash relaxed?

So you play Amnesia. When is your core chilled? From the start? Five minutes in? First monster? First jump? Two thirds in? End of the game? When? How did they design this chilling of the core. How did they do it? How does it work?

Say, Ash is at the beach, lying in the sun. Is she relaxed? Did she get what he wanted? How will Ash, and the reader, know, if and when she did or didn't get what she wanted?

So you make it clear, as a writer, you write. Ash wants to go to the beach, lie in the sun and fall asleep. That's what she wants. That's her measuring stick. Ash, and everyone reading, will ******* know, did she lie in the sun, did she fall asleep. So basically you translate her desire, right? You will know exactly when she does or doesn't get what she wants, right? Because if she leaves without having fallen asleep, or if it's cloudy, or whatever, then you know, she didn't get what she wanted. Or maybe she does get what she wanted.

The point is, so what. So what if she does or doesn't get what she want. So. What? The point is to see what the character does when they do or don't get what they want. And to do that, it has to be exceptionally clear when they do or don't get what they want.

What's the connection? The fact they couldn't say "an experience that will make you tremble". Suppose it didn't make some tremble. "An experience that will make you scream." Suppose it didn't make some scream. In America, someone will sue over that. And win. "Yah, bought the game, didn't tremble/scream, 0/10, false advertisement, see you in court."

So what you have is no possible causal link between the player and the game. You don't know how the **** they will react. But you're making a horror game, right? The point is to scare the player, right? Still, you can't say, "an experience that will scare you." That's as simple as it gets. Still, they can't say that. Because they know, it's hacked, it's cheap. They can't guarantee it.

Still, this may seem inconsequential. But, it's a pattern, not an instance. If you break apart the story and look at it, it's exactly the same. Nothing specific, nothing consistent, just some dust blown in the eyes and some claptrap shoved in the ears of people already accustomed to not taking a video game seriously.

So, what's the issue? Is Amnesia not scary, did it not make money, enough for them to make SOMA? Sure. That's not the point. The point is, was Amnesia the best it could be? Was the story the best it could be, the mechanics, and so on. I don't care if people like it or not, or makes money or not, all I care is, was it as good as it could possibly be?

No. It wasn't.

And this is true for all video games, all studios. Why? Because the entire medium is a cliche now. Survival is slapped on everything nowadays. Sandbox, lost all meaning. Everything is a sandbox. The players have no clue what horror, survival, exploration, pick any adjective you want, mean, because the industry itself thrives in these murky waters where nothing is specific. Sure, it's survival, it has crafting too, buy it. Why does it have crafting? Because that's what people want, so let's jam it in there.

Going back to Ash, Ash wouldn't want to "craft". Too ambiguous. Now you see where I'm going? When the **** is the effect of crafting on the player achieved? First craft? Third? Tenth? When you make the hammer? When you make every recipe? Never. It's a joke. There is no point. You could find the items in the world instead of crafting them. For how the games are made and what they are, it makes no difference. But, as we know, crafting is here to stay. And it's a hack. They know it's cheap and meaningless. I'm not saying, hey, gaming, get rid of your crafting. I'm saying, hey, I want to give money to someone for crafting that makes sense. Does anyone want money? But they don't need my money, they need the money of people that like crafting for crafting's sake.

The question is, if the latter like crafting for crafting's sake, they don't care if it makes sense or not. They would still like it if it made sense, because they like crafting for crafting's sake. So why the heck wouldn't you make crafting make sense, and make more people happy? And, you will be the first game to have crafting that makes sense. Not only this, it would, by necessity, be unlike any other mechanic on the market. Because it has real purpose, a purpose which currently is alien to the gaming industry.

What I envision from any game is just something that changes your life, in its own way. That's the point, right? That's what the teachers told us, write something that will change your life. Chances are, it will change other people's lives too. And if not, if it ******* bombs, hey, it still changed your life. Books do that, why should we judge games by other standards? Different medium? That's another discussion; but it's still entertainment, that basic human need that changes lives.

Making a video game is just like writing a book. For a year, or two, or more, all you're doing is writing one particular story, making one particular video game. Out of infinity stories, out of infinity video games, you pick one, and dedicate part of your life to making it. Your purpose is to write that one story, make that one video game. Because, at that point, you've made so many sacrifices and gave up on so many basic human needs, desires and enjoyments that all it matters is to write that story, or make that video game, and have them the best they can possibly be, because you've already lost things you could never get back, and what you lost you want to give people through your story, or your video game, people who need those things as much as you do. Because, if it weren't for you, they would most likely never get them.

Or not.

It's "just" video games, right? Buy it, play it, shut up, move on.

There's a saying; 9 out of 10 players see the end of the game on YouTube. Guess what, that's not the fault of the player, unless you're delusional. And what does this tell you about how video games are being made? Guess that's why 9 out of 10 video game endings are exceptionally bad. Hey, if just one out ten will see it, why even bother? 9 out of 10 games sag in the middle, and fall flat on their face long before the credits roll. 9 out of 10 players don't see the end of the game because by then they're fed up with it because it's a bad video game.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought the church was fairly realistic, but I guess it depends on your religion. Near my mom's home is a stone church from around 1350, and it has the same simplicity as this one, although it is a lot bigger. The stained glass windows would be long gone however, given the overall condition of the building.

The location up the hill is easy to explain (although I'm not sure if the devs thought of it that way): The church is the place to gather in case of emergencies and one potential emergency on the coast is a water level surge during storms, so shelter higher up on a hill is a good idea.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was not debating whether or not it's simple or realistic, I was debating whether or not it has the atmosphere of a church. That was the entire point of the story, how a perfume that smells nothing like a church smells like a church, and how a church that is an actual church smells nothing like a church.

And the point is not for you or me to explain the location, the point is how they explain the location. Water level surge, emergency? Well, :roll:, in that case, Hibernia would be wiped out, and everyone in CH would be wiped out too, along with their houses. Because they dun built them on the shore with no protection whatsoever. So you have your house in Coastal Townsite, and your emergency plan in case of a water level surge, is the church in DP. Erm, I don't buy it.

Also, for having no windows, no door, and a big gaping hole in it, the church is surprisingly clear of snow. You would expect snow inside, at about the same level as outside, with all those blizzards and all. But no, it's extremely clean. Just a bit of snow where the hole is.

It may seem like a completely minor thing, the design of a little place of no consequence, but I think it's important. Instead of talking about DP as a whole, I like to focus on particulars. Like the church, or the bricks, or the trailers, or the bones. The whale heads. Where are they? They are telling of the bigger picture. That's, at least, how I see it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Continuing my exploration of Hibernia. I have increased the gamma in post so we can all take a good look at what I'm talking about.

Not only I don't understand how the chain is fixed to the bone like that, but, more importantly, what is keeping that chain in place? Follow the chain, and see where it leads. What kind of magic is happening up there, on that beam, so that the bones can sway effortlessly on that chain without everything falling over? Besides, is this how you hoist a whale? Seriously, I have no idea.

96x96-BillTarling.thumb.jpg.d62832a712c4

_hibernia5.thumb.jpg.8d47c4c2e275414d33e

_hibernia6.thumb.jpg.861fa677decc5b9099a

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
And the point is not for you or me to explain the location, the point is how they explain the location. Water level surge, emergency? Well, :roll:, in that case, Hibernia would be wiped out, and everyone in CH would be wiped out too, along with their houses. Because they dun built them on the shore with no protection whatsoever. So you have your house in Coastal Townsite, and your emergency plan in case of a water level surge, is the church in DP. Erm, I don't buy it.

Actually, it is the default explanation for why coastal communities tend to have some structures higher up on hills. People have been building on low-lying coastlines for ages, accepting the risks, preparing for the occasional disasters, and rebuilding afterwards. Nothing unusual there.

As for the church feeling like a church, that is a purely subjective question. For some it might, for others not. That's something you cannot really do anything about, except trying to make something that looks just about right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps TarjaS, maybe it feels weird because I've never seen anything like it.

Where I live, every community follows a general pattern; this is a map of a city from the 17th century.

96x96-BillTarling.thumb.jpg.d62832a712c4

rasnov.thumb.jpg.24fc451570c445c89475745

Stavropoleos.thumb.jpg.7d1d4071cae68d318

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
There is no way for people to get heard and receive exactly the product they want by participating.

I don't think that's the issue. It isn't in my case for sure. It's not about receiving the product "we" want by participating. The point is to comment on what "they" deliver.

TLD will inspire more games like it.

One of those will be more like what you envisioned.

It's not about that either. It's not like I have something in my head and I'm waiting around for someone to make it. I don't envision anything in particular, not even in a certain genre.

Let's look at Amnesia's Steam description.

"An experience that will chill you to the core."

Have you played Amnesia? Have you been chilled to the core? And, if I may ask, where is your core? Can you point at your core? Show me your core. Is the core not naturally chilled? What is the baseline temperature of the core? Does the temperature of the core vary from person to person? What if my core is chilled to begin with, what then?

This may seem as me abusing language, but, as a writer, I have been butt ****** by my teachers every time one of my characters din't have a clear desire. Why? If you're writing Ash, and Ash "wants to relax", when in the **** is Ash relaxed?

So you play Amnesia. When is your core chilled? From the start? Five minutes in? First monster? First jump? Two thirds in? End of the game? When? How did they design this chilling of the core. How did they do it? How does it work?

Say, Ash is at the beach, lying in the sun. Is she relaxed? Did she get what he wanted? How will Ash, and the reader, know, if and when she did or didn't get what she wanted?

So you make it clear, as a writer, you write. Ash wants to go to the beach, lie in the sun and fall asleep. That's what she wants. That's her measuring stick. Ash, and everyone reading, will ******* know, did she lie in the sun, did she fall asleep. So basically you translate her desire, right? You will know exactly when she does or doesn't get what she wants, right? Because if she leaves without having fallen asleep, or if it's cloudy, or whatever, then you know, she didn't get what she wanted. Or maybe she does get what she wanted.

The point is, so what. So what if she does or doesn't get what she want. So. What? The point is to see what the character does when they do or don't get what they want. And to do that, it has to be exceptionally clear when they do or don't get what they want.

What's the connection? The fact they couldn't say "an experience that will make you tremble". Suppose it didn't make some tremble. "An experience that will make you scream." Suppose it didn't make some scream. In America, someone will sue over that. And win. "Yah, bought the game, didn't tremble/scream, 0/10, false advertisement, see you in court."

So what you have is no possible causal link between the player and the game. You don't know how the **** they will react. But you're making a horror game, right? The point is to scare the player, right? Still, you can't say, "an experience that will scare you." That's as simple as it gets. Still, they can't say that. Because they know, it's hacked, it's cheap. They can't guarantee it.

Still, this may seem inconsequential. But, it's a pattern, not an instance. If you break apart the story and look at it, it's exactly the same. Nothing specific, nothing consistent, just some dust blown in the eyes and some claptrap shoved in the ears of people already accustomed to not taking a video game seriously.

So, what's the issue? Is Amnesia not scary, did it not make money, enough for them to make SOMA? Sure. That's not the point. The point is, was Amnesia the best it could be? Was the story the best it could be, the mechanics, and so on. I don't care if people like it or not, or makes money or not, all I care is, was it as good as it could possibly be?

No. It wasn't.

And this is true for all video games, all studios. Why? Because the entire medium is a cliche now. Survival is slapped on everything nowadays. Sandbox, lost all meaning. Everything is a sandbox. The players have no clue what horror, survival, exploration, pick any adjective you want, mean, because the industry itself thrives in these murky waters where nothing is specific. Sure, it's survival, it has crafting too, buy it. Why does it have crafting? Because that's what people want, so let's jam it in there.

Going back to Ash, Ash wouldn't want to "craft". Too ambiguous. Now you see where I'm going? When the **** is the effect of crafting on the player achieved? First craft? Third? Tenth? When you make the hammer? When you make every recipe? Never. It's a joke. There is no point. You could find the items in the world instead of crafting them. For how the games are made and what they are, it makes no difference. But, as we know, crafting is here to stay. And it's a hack. They know it's cheap and meaningless. I'm not saying, hey, gaming, get rid of your crafting. I'm saying, hey, I want to give money to someone for crafting that makes sense. Does anyone want money? But they don't need my money, they need the money of people that like crafting for crafting's sake.

The question is, if the latter like crafting for crafting's sake, they don't care if it makes sense or not. They would still like it if it made sense, because they like crafting for crafting's sake. So why the heck wouldn't you make crafting make sense, and make more people happy? And, you will be the first game to have crafting that makes sense. Not only this, it would, by necessity, be unlike any other mechanic on the market. Because it has real purpose, a purpose which currently is alien to the gaming industry.

What I envision from any game is just something that changes your life, in its own way. That's the point, right? That's what the teachers told us, write something that will change your life. Chances are, it will change other people's lives too. And if not, if it ******* bombs, hey, it still changed your life. Books do that, why should we judge games by other standards? Different medium? That's another discussion; but it's still entertainment, that basic human need that changes lives.

Making a video game is just like writing a book. For a year, or two, or more, all you're doing is writing one particular story, making one particular video game. Out of infinity stories, out of infinity video games, you pick one, and dedicate part of your life to making it. Your purpose is to write that one story, make that one video game. Because, at that point, you've made so many sacrifices and gave up on so many basic human needs, desires and enjoyments that all it matters is to write that story, or make that video game, and have them the best they can possibly be, because you've already lost things you could never get back, and what you lost you want to give people through your story, or your video game, people who need those things as much as you do. Because, if it weren't for you, they would most likely never get them.

Or not.

It's "just" video games, right? Buy it, play it, shut up, move on.

There's a saying; 9 out of 10 players see the end of the game on YouTube. Guess what, that's not the fault of the player, unless you're delusional. And what does this tell you about how video games are being made? Guess that's why 9 out of 10 video game endings are exceptionally bad. Hey, if just one out ten will see it, why even bother? 9 out of 10 games sag in the middle, and fall flat on their face long before the credits roll. 9 out of 10 players don't see the end of the game because by then they're fed up with it because it's a bad video game.

I think I understand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this