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Old 29 August 2016, 22:23   #101
Steve T
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My apologies in advance for the wall-o-text....

I was never very excited about NMS, as it seemed so casual in so many ways (for a game which as large as it is, could potentially last for years) but it really did look like a much more in depth and interesting, majestic, experience in the earlier videos which may have stuck in peoples heads, got them talking, raised expectations.

When it drops at full price and just proves to be far emptier and goofier than what was expected, combined with stability issues and the apparently excessive cost of the title (Hello games apparently have 15 staff, i mean who's making the money here?), its no wonder a lot of people are wondering why they bothered.

Ultimately, even if it was better, its one of those game types which only has an appeal to a niche audience, so I think lots of people would have been bored with it almost as quickly, pretty much whatever it turned out to be. If you can find the game within its structure or just enjoy the experience for what it is then you will enjoy it, but not everyone (perhaps the vast majority) can.

Like some people enjoy GTA for the sandbox, running around causing havoc and inventing their own narrative as they go along, supported by the features and depth of the environment it becomes an entertaining experience. However, some prefer it more for the missions & story, characters... One of the reasons it has so much appeal is that it does both very well, lots of depth, lots of activities, even attempts at humour at times.

With an enormous staff of talented veterans behind it, yeah some may not like it but its a title which ultimately deserves that price point time and time again.

Production values for example, I have previously worked as a developer on AAA titles, as a hardware / hard-surface 3D modeller, the standards I had to work to a decade ago were better than what I see here, a lot better. To look at the starting spacecraft for example, is that a model from a AAA game? IMHO it isn't - blocky and unsophisticated, uncool, generic, derivative and undetailed (it has nothing to do with the art-style, overall) maybe some like it or feel it has charm, thats fine but asset-wise, looks like something from an average freeware game to me, made by more or less beginners. Coupled with procedural generation a lot of times this title will inevitably look amateurish in play but they will choose the best bits for the trailers of course.

So, I haven't bought it or played it, but thought I'd wade in with a lot of boring, skippable opinion anyway, seen a lot of videos of it before launch and the reactions after, and while its not for me (and i like this genre) I think HG genuinely have a lot to be proud of.

Unfortunately its probably destined to be remembered as a disappointing flop and for the entertaining drama, like Colonial Marines, capable of generating some amazing vistas at times though.., I can totally see why some people genuinely really like it, & why its a love it or hate it thing with it.... As well as the sudden realisation from players, hey i'm really bored, lets play something more entertaining/gratifying... And then they remember why games are fun for them and don't come back to it.

It would be real nice to see the concept executed better, for HG to get some more staff and really go to town on it or make a sequel. Sadly I doubt this will happen or go very far as the reaction has been so poor, you just can't push a title like this as being as mainstream as Sony hoped.
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Old 29 August 2016, 23:14   #102
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I think that when it was first announced, quite a lot of people (in a niche, naturally) wanted it to be 80s Elite re-imagined for the present day. We got Elite: Dangerous, which is not Elite from the 80s, it's Frontier from the 90s.

And for me, and pretty much everyone I've talked to who's played it, it really is what we dreamed of. Hopefully, yes, HG will reactivate the features that were lost - large dinosaurs are not missing, but very rare. The large Diplodocus-alike is in the assets, but disabled (nobody knows why). The portals are in there, but disabled. The game can be re-skinned easily enough to match the E3 2015 demo. The planets can have vastly larger amounts of lifeforms on there, but they've been toned down (again, why?). Likewise colour schemes can be much larger in breadth, but have been reduced in scope. Large crashed freighter model parts are in there, but don't appear. In-atmosphere flight was nerfed to auto avoid landscape and only fly at about 100 feet.

And all of those things can be (and have been, with the sole exception of portals) modded back in, so it's not like the game can't handle them, at least on PC.

I'm hoping they add it all back in, but I'm not bothered if they don't as ... well, we do have the modding community. But some things can't be remedied without access to the source code, so it's to be hoped that they do actually listen to what people are saying.

It'll be interesting to see how many people are left after the first rush of refunds.
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Old 30 August 2016, 10:22   #103
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See, relying on the 'community' to fix things again, disgraceful! They aren't getting paid yet it makes the game more playable and probably creates sales but they won't get a penny from it!

Just rename the company 'Goodbye Games' as hopefully there may not be another one coming from them after this!!
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Old 30 August 2016, 11:46   #104
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See, relying on the 'community' to fix things again, disgraceful! They aren't getting paid yet it makes the game more playable and probably creates sales but they won't get a penny from it!
You could probably level the same criticism at Skyrim. Or any other game that takes advantage of a lively modding community.

Oh, and Steam at least are not making an exemption to NMS for refunds. Neither are Sony.
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Old 30 August 2016, 12:05   #105
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You could probably level the same criticism at Skyrim. Or any other game that takes advantage of a lively modding community.
No you couldn't. Skyrim is finished and satysfying enough without mods for a VERY long (ingame) time.
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Old 30 August 2016, 12:33   #106
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No you couldn't. Skyrim is finished and satysfying enough without mods for a VERY long (ingame) time.
I beg to differ - Skyrim was anything but satisfying (though it's gotten a massive new lease of life with the Enderal mod). But then TES has really been treading water since Morrowind.
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Old 30 August 2016, 13:25   #107
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I played Skyrim to the end without any mods or game breaking bugs, it was only after finishing it I applied a few mods, mainly textures, as the game that was released was the game I expected it to be, can't ever remember thinking Skyrim was a ripoff because we didn't have x, y, or z features missing, it didn't get the backlash on release that NMS has had!

NMS is having the community fix/add/enable most of the stuff that should have been in the public release but wasn't, that's the main issue, not the fact modders can enhance the game which is a bonus for everyone and generates extra sales of games that have a good support for the modding community.

So no, I don't think you can't compare Skyrim to NMS based on modding support, Skyrim didn't need modders to actively 'fix' the game on launch for PC or enable stuff that was supposed to be in the final release. I also think Skyrim had more 'polish' time than any previous Bethesda game so was 'complete' on launch.
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Old 30 August 2016, 14:46   #108
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I also think Skyrim had more 'polish' time than any previous Bethesda game so was 'complete' on launch.
And on this, we can certainly agree. NMS was rushed, and it shows.
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Old 30 August 2016, 20:55   #109
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It sounds like some of these things were easily re-enabled, if they were simply models / classes which were disabled it might be 'easy' like editing a text file or whatever i guess.

If thats true, I wonder (and strongly suspect), did they drop things from the PC port because the PS4 couldn't handle them? - Sony not wanting the PC version to be too superior to the console experience.

this kind of thing has happened before, but even if you can make it better in some of these ways, it sounds superficial, its just adding a few more objects in.

I still think there's a lot of stuff which people were seeing in the earlier videos, again the ones which captured peoples imaginations, which you were meant to think were really in the game but in reality were just scripted elements in a vertical slice demo. This is not something which a community would easily add, since it was never there in a dynamic form to begin with - It doesn't really make any difference if there's a different type of dinosaur, or even lots more of them, or spacecraft etc, if it just behaves in a goofy, unsophisticated manner like everything else.
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Old 31 August 2016, 16:50   #110
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Well, which things do you have in mind?

The only thing behaviour-wise that didn't make it in was a large animal knocking over trees (and that could never happen with the current engine in any meaningful sense). The aggressive behaviour, the hunting, stalking and killing that the creatures do to eachother is all in there - I've seen a herd of grazing animals scattered by a predator, resulting in a chase followed by a kill of one of them by a predator complete with screams and roaring and suchlike.

Thing is, I've only seen it once - getting a large enough group together for that kind of behaviour to exhibit is very rare.
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Old 31 August 2016, 17:24   #111
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As well as the animals i'm sure there were other things to do with the flight and combat mechanics which were scripted in early previews, to make it seem more interesting... The dynamics of the game just aren't going to give the same kind of experience as a scripted game (which is what people are more used to i guess). I think other people have spent a long time documenting these things.

My point is that just adding models back in or upping the amount of 'stuff' in a scene doesn't really 'fix' a game for people that aren't really gratified by this kind of thing, given that there's apparently very little payoff for your investment of time into it.

Last edited by Steve T; 31 August 2016 at 17:29.
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Old 01 September 2016, 10:21   #112
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I don't think there's anything that HG can do to resurrect some people's opinions now. There's always going to be hate for NMS regardless of what actually comes out - and there will always be those people that feel the need to post to web forums about how much people should be hating it.

There's always one
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Old 01 September 2016, 11:23   #113
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I don't think there's anything that HG can do to resurrect some people's opinions now. There's always going to be hate for NMS regardless of what actually comes out - and there will always be those people that feel the need to post to web forums about how much people should be hating it.

There's always one
I quite agree, but why do they think they can get away with in this day and age? I mean, we've had these issues for years, but it seems it's gone to a whole new level in recent years.

You just have to look at how the other game developers own brand is becoming so toxic in the player communities. They shovel out sub-standard, bug-ridden and unfinished games and expect people to be grateful?

I'm a customer/consumer and quite frankly, I send back anything and everything that isn't up to scratch, as advertised. You wouldn't pay for a car if it didn't come as specified, so why should games/software be any different. Until people start hitting them in the wallet, it will never change and we'll keep getting the same shit products/service until the PC market is no more..

But back to NMS.. I think it's quite an impressive achievement, that a small Indie developer such as Hello Games have managed to join the likes of EA, Ubisoft, Activision and Blizzard etc. after just what, 3 released games and their reputation is like up there with the big boys!!

And even Sean Murray is being referred to as the new Peter Molyneux, quite impressive....
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Old 01 September 2016, 12:27   #114
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I have more sympathy for them than some of the bigger names you mention there, much bigger names... Too many promises & too much hype, combined with not enough understanding of who the players/customers are (the same people who bought the same COD game off them every year for the best part of a decade) Sony trying to push an empty, unfinished feeling sandbox of a galactic botanist simulator on the mainstream audience at a ridiculous price.... What could go wrong? And Sean Murray as willing collaborator - dollar signs, spotlights, oh my... Anyone would get carried away, probably.
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Old 02 September 2016, 00:50   #115
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The fault the gaming industry is in the mess it's in is all down to Gamer Apathy! Point the finger at the vast majority of gamers who have allowed this to happen! We now have firmly established DLC, episodic games, in game purchases / micro transactions, Early Access games, unfinished / bug ridden games and all because no one can be bothered to object! No one boycotts all those things in any meaningful numbers to make a difference, so don't blame the game companies/publishers, blame the gamer as they have the power to stop all this nonsense but they just sit on their hands and have let it get in the state it's in, they've got everything they deserve really!!
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Old 02 September 2016, 10:43   #116
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To be fair though, HG released too early - they should have tested with a larger QA department (or any QA would have done) and waited a few months to make sure that it didn't crash.

I'm not sure that it would have escaped any of the bile thrown at it though - and you've seen what happens (death threats) when it was delayed. Currently there are four things that it lacked on launch that were shown - or discussed in interviews - and didn't make it into the final version. Portals, Multiplayer, Tree-destruction and certain creatures. None of that is a major omission, yet the amount of hate directed using these as an excuse really is astonishing.

The size of the universe is real, as is the procedural generation of planets. It looks exactly like it did on the videos. People made a lot of assumptions, and there were legitimate complaints about certain gameplay mechanics that weren't shown - like ship handling etc - but that was in the videos, but not information available to the viewer as they weren't at the controls.

But large animals, predator/prey AI, Fleet engagements, blackholes (instead of portals), in-atmosphere battles with enemy ships, lush environments, herds of creatures etc all made it in there. The scale of the universe and the procgen though made it unlikely anyone would see them.

But still, greater mistakes and omissions were made by any number of games in the past and they don't receive anything like the amount of hatred that NMS does. Sean Murray is partly responsible - he should have kept his gob shut tbh, but I don't think that would have helped in this case. NMS was going to be hated regardless.

Still, it's being played just as much as any previous release according to the Steam charts (and of course there's Gog, where no stats are available) and hasn't shown a huge drop-off in popularity as one would expect. And that's baffling since people are so vocal (even in here) about how it should be shunned.
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Old 02 September 2016, 13:49   #117
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I still think its a quality/pricepoint thing & whatever has been added in does not meet expectations/hype, again its nothing game changing. And lets not oversimplify as its an entire ecosystem of hate, you can't just blame SM, Sony, or the audience (perhaps some simply want to have something to hate on/rage against).

The 'haters' in life always seem to be a bigger entity than they really are, just due to how vocal they are and how passionate they are about hating... it happens to all of us at times I think, if we get worked up about something (perhaps about something far more important than games/entertainment), though I think for some people its a way of life, it may even be a career. You might have 99 people who like something, and say nothing, and one guy who hates it who makes all the noise and with youtube etc, that guy might have a bigger audience than all the people who buy the game.

(i'm not talking about anyone here or whatever, its just a general observation, i've been on both ends of it)

Some people tend to be very polarized in opinion, like on metacritic where the user reviews of something are all 10 or 0 and no other values between.

I've seen people quote figures like 90% drop-off, not sure if that was steam or PS4 or both, or if that's true or clickbait.

I personally feel they (Sony) overpriced the game... On one hand, if they were not under the Sony umbrella and really expecting niche sales, I can totally understand a higher price point, a relatively small number of sales to support a relatively small team over a fairly long development period. But since they hyped it so much to get lots more sales and then released something which to me looks & plays fairly poorly, I don't really want them to be rewarded significantly for this tactic, they could have made it so much better, raised the production values up and added depth to it or actually significant improvements, but they didn't.
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Old 16 September 2016, 21:44   #118
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I've decided to just skip it entirely when my eye fell on this baby:

https://everspace-game.com/media/

rogue-like single player space exploration/combat game - WITH a story. Now that's more like it. And holy hell... its a beauty.

(Steam early access)
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Old 17 September 2016, 01:42   #119
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I've decided to just skip it entirely when my eye fell on this baby:

https://everspace-game.com/media/

rogue-like single player space exploration/combat game - WITH a story. Now that's more like it. And holy hell... its a beauty.

(Steam early access)
Did IQ's just drop sharply while I was away?

Early Access, hype, promised features etc, ring a bell? Might as well be called Neverspace until it's actually out and reviewed, then the hate can begin!
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Old 17 September 2016, 19:23   #120
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No, but epic dickishness rose sharply when you got back.
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