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  • Civilization IV
    Fragland.net's Civilization IV Q&A is an in-house Q&A distributed by 2K Games discussing Firaxis' upcoming strategy sequel: "Culture has been revamped from Civ III. We thought it was a great idea that didn't get the treatment it deserved. In addition, we have also eliminated static eras and revamped the tech tree to make people feel more in control of what they want to research and when. Civilization III had a very advanced AI but many people felt that it 'cheated' a bit too much. For many reasons, the AI has to have some bonuses to keep it competitive, especially at higher levels, but Soren Johnson (lead designer/programmer on Civ IV) has taken the criticism to heart and will be spending most of our remaining development time making sure this game has the best Civ AI ever."
  • LucasArts
    The LucasArts Q&A on Boomtown talks with Jim Ward, president of LucasArts, one-time LucasFilm marketing president about the future of their gaming division: "Right now there is no story in games. Gaming right now is about button management, basically. Take for instance Grand Theft Auto, a great game, I love it and play it, a fantastic game. But the story of that is just simply a broad context, you drive around some places and shoot people. But there is no real compelling story telling, very rarely you see this in good games. In Half-Life, there was an attempt. But we need to infuse story into those games and make them compelling because every kind of entertainment, if it's a movie, a play, whatever it is, is all based on story and characters."
  • Falcon 4: Allied Force
    SimHQ's Falcon 4: Allied Force Q&A chats up the folks from Lead Pursuit about their upcoming effort at giving Falcon 4 more time in the sun: "Our company mantra is stability, stability, and stability. We've made tremendous strides here. Our tests on the data have greatly improved gameplay. Julian Onions has taken a virtual chainsaw to the Virtual Universe engine to improve the management of all entities (aircraft, objectives, weapons, etc.) in the Falcon world. The Artificial Intelligence Quotient has jumped 50 points thanks to the efforts of Sylvain Gagnon, Manfred Nelles, and Mike Laskey. There are new hi-res textures, dynamic lighting, and volumetric clouds. Multiplayer has an engine to impress online squads-we recently had ten players battling it out in a busy Internet campaign. The User Interface is so much easier to navigate, and a lot more intuitive."
  • 2 Days to Vegas
    The 2 Days to Vegas Q&A on Tactland.Ocio Digital is a conversation with Tim Dvoskin of Steel Monkey about 2 Days to Vegas, their upcoming third-person action/adventure game. Details in the Q&A are scant, and the answers are brief, so given the theme I am arbitrarily choosing to quote the late Hunter S. Thomson: "My heart was filled with joy. I felt like a monster reincarnation of Horatio Alger: A man on the move... and just sick enough to be totally confident."
  • Curt Schilling
    There's a Curt Schilling Q&A on Everquest 2 WarCry where they talk with the Boston Red Sox pitcher about participation in EverQuest II.

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19 Replies. 1 pages. Viewing page 1.
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19. Stories Jun 7, 2005, 11:23 Prez
 
EVERY single game ever made has a story. In some, like the Sims, you make your own.

 
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Goodbye my Monte boy. May you rest in the peace you never knew in life.
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18. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 7, 2005, 09:14 Gandhi
 
And even possibly Battlefield 2.

Come now - that's stretching it a bit don't you think?

You cannot make anything fool-proof. The fools are too inventive
 
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You cannot make anything fool-proof. The fools are too inventive

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17. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 22:17 The Half Elf
 
Honestly Bill, I believe your wrong. I beleive Bioware, along with Square Enix, Blizzard and a few others excel in the story buisness.

But at times there are games that absoutley no story at all that hold their own as well, like the Sims Franchise. I mean go take a look at the Sims 2 website and you'll find the biggest game community on the planet making their own stories. And I have a feeling The Movies will also have a simular following with it's in game Movie Maker. And even possibly Battlefield 2.

 
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"I've never seen a feature like this before. It warms your ass. It's wonderful" -Walter Bishop
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16. Lucasarts Jun 6, 2005, 21:37 Shadowcat
 
Right now there is no story in games
This is because people like YOU cancelled projects like "Sam & Max" (2), and stopped making adventure games in general.
we need to infuse story into those games and make them compelling
See previous comment, you %&^*%#&.

I was seriously pissed off when Sam & Max was cancelled, but this is too much... Congratulations on rubbing salt into an open wound and making us hate you even more, Mr Lucasarts.

 
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15. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 21:24 Bill Borre
 
There will NEVER be great stories in games for the simple reason that it is not possible to know what the player will do in an interactive environment. Stories in games will always be inferior to the great stories and characterization you can find in a book.

 
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14. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 19:33 Squirmer
 
Games are not movies, or books, or plays tho. They are interactive. I personally don`t want some terribly bad game writers attempt at a game story. I don`t wanna play a movie. I hated Monolith AvP 2 for example. they told you everything in the cutscenes, leaving nothing to player self discovery. And tho they worked hard on the story, IMHO it sucked. The game was nothing like the movies it was based upon. The movies were pretty minimalist storywise. Just 1 example.

IMHO games should be about player self discovery... with a very limited amount of the story told to them. This helps by allowing a more open ended experience for the player. If you have this long drawn out story, the ingame player experience ends up being scripted to heck so the player is led mouse to cheese along with the story.


Definately. This is what I love about games like System Shock, Thief and Deus Ex. They have a different emphasis on story (DX is more epic, the others more focused), but what they have in common is that the story is told through player exploration and discovery. That's how you make a compelling game that's fun to play but also has an involving story. And think of all the memorable characters to come from those games: JC Denton, Garrett, Shodan, plus all the minor characters.

Oh, and as for the last character I fell in love with: Alyx, only a few months ago.

 
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13. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 18:56 Charlie_Six
 
he mentions both GTA and HL2 as having essentially no story. I haven't played GTA to a large extent, but I agree on HL2. It was just an experience, and the story is completely irrelevant. The excitement of HL2 comes not from feeling part of some great drama, but from simply living in the moment. Kinda like a rollercoaster ride. Guild Wars, which I do play all the time, has no story IMO. It's the perfect example of "button management", especially in PVE. Still a great game though.

Personally I think games should try to focus on cool exciting gameplay first, and a good story second. Although at this point, gameplay ideas have dried up and I guess all you can fall back on is a good story to follow. I find Bioware's NWN and KOTOR games to have some of the worst gameplay ever, but they can be fun thanks to story. A lot of gamers seem satisfied with having a good, memorable story, even if the game attached is terrible. But for me, gameplay can bring me back for dozens of hours, while a good story is better suited for a 2 hour medium like movies. I don't really see the point in rehearing a story that takes 10-30 hours to hear.

 
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12. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 18:23 Creston
 
Right now there is no story in games. Gaming right now is about button management, basically

Jade Empire? GTA? Half Life 2? Guild Wars?
That's just off the top of my head.

As for Curt Schilling, Curt, just SHUT THE FUCK UP, PLEASE! I'm getting tired of hearing your voice and seeing your mug on everything I see, turn on or hear about. Get back in shape and get back to pitching, and stop giving us your opinion on Life, the Universe and Everything. Thank you.

Creston


 
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11. No subject Jun 6, 2005, 17:31 space captain
 
yeh man - Im much much more interested in complex AI simulations that create stories "on the fly"... to me that is infinitely more interesting than all the 100% cliche garbage that passes for storylines in games today

someday Id like to see that "daggerfall/Stalker" concept taken to the ultimate limits, where EVERYTHING is non-scripted - but still appears to be due to its complecity, believability and relevance

________________________
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http://www.soundclick.com/bands/4/invisibleacropolis_music.htm
 
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10. Re: No subject Jun 6, 2005, 16:38 DG
 
so basically the guy's saying games should all be about hugely linear "gameplay" where everything's hand (force) fed to the player like it's a movie where you have to fidget with the remote control?

I liked the story in GTA games. It was kind of like those essays you used to get in English class, where they write the first few paragraphs and then you get largely free reign. In movies you get "emotional involvement", in games you need other forms of involvement.


PS. I'm not buying another CIV game until I start reading lots of comments along the lines of "if you liked Alpha Centauri, you'll like this".
This comment was edited on Jun 6, 16:39.
 
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9. No subject Jun 6, 2005, 16:25 Wilf
 
I read the Lucasart interview with an open mind but was still left feeling a bit bemused by this guy.
Games aren't about story and character development they are about presenting a challenge and rewarding successful completion of that challenge.
Comparing games to movies is something that has seen the industry become stale and lifeless.

I wanted to pick up and play a PS2 game yesterday before I sat down to eat. I looked through all my games and there wasn't one that I could have just tinkered with for half an hour. They're all intense story-driven drivel - including GTA (which I love).

I'm in the minority but I'm looking to Nintendo to go back to basic with games and give me something that I can just pick up and play not have to sit through some shitty game designer's idea of a story.

 
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8. No subject Jun 6, 2005, 15:31 Alamar
 
I came in here to bitch about the Lucas Arts comments, but I see people beat me to it (busy day), but damn, making a blanket statement about games and no stories, and being part of Lucas Arts... Who used to churn out GOOD adventure games like mad? Wtf...

Why are adventure games 'dead'? They had stories that people didn't want to get involved in...

Why are huge single player RPGs with massive characters, plot lines, etc (BG's, FF's, etc) only for 'hardcore gamers'? They had stories that people didn't want to get involved in...

Good points made already about the absurdity of his comments, but also, games are consumer driven (that's why we have 5 billion FPS's and 5 billion RTS's), and that's why stories have dried up. That's what the consumer wants.

Personally, I'm all about the story in games, and I suck up every ounce of it, but I don't think i'm normal ; )

-Alamar

 
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7. Re: Curt Schilling Jun 6, 2005, 15:17 Fingers M
 
I didnt know Curt was on the Evercrack, its wierd hearing him use all those acronyms. He should play WOW though, eq is dirty.  
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6. No subject Jun 6, 2005, 14:21 space captain
 
""every kind of entertainment, if it's a movie, a play, whatever it is, is all based on story and characters"""

i hope he doesnt mean EVERY kind of entertainment - because you know, thats very wrong - and fucking retarded

instrumental music isnt based on characters or stories, neither is getting drunk.. i could go on and on and on

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5. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 13:12 Shataan
 
""Right now there is no story in games. Gaming right now is about button management, basically. But there is no real compelling story telling, very rarely you see this in good games. In Half-Life, there was an attempt. But we need to infuse story into those games and make them compelling because every kind of entertainment, if it's a movie, a play, whatever it is, is all based on story and characters."

Games are not movies, or books, or plays tho. They are interactive. I personally don`t want some terribly bad game writers attempt at a game story. I don`t wanna play a movie. I hated Monolith AvP 2 for example. they told you everything in the cutscenes, leaving nothing to player self discovery. And tho they worked hard on the story, IMHO it sucked. The game was nothing like the movies it was based upon. The movies were pretty minimalist storywise. Just 1 example.

IMHO games should be about player self discovery... with a very limited amount of the story told to them. This helps by allowing a more open ended experience for the player. If you have this long drawn out story, the ingame player experience ends up being scripted to heck so the player is led mouse to cheese along with the story.

Another example. I myself find it easier to just be ME. So, if I was just a Marine character entering the game, I don`t have to worry bout trying to imagine myself as Lt. Baker. I don`t have to get to know Bakers prior history, his mom or Dad etc.... I can just be ME. After that just throw the missions at me and let me immerse. lol

 
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4. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 12:04 asrof
 
This guy is so full of it I don't know where to start.

He's right, GTA, half life, no story there. Now Episode 1 Pod Racer was an example of a game with an epic story. I can't believe a company churning out the kind of filth they have lately has the balls to judge other companies successful and fun games.

Games need characters you fall in love with so they can be mass marketed and turned into toy, clothing and advertising revenue. That's his real motivation. They just want to create characters people will like and then whore them out and right now the forgettable characters in most games don't do that, how unfortunate!

And has this guy never played an RPG? There are plenty of memorable characters in games like Fallout and Baldur's Gate, the problem is while he thinks thats what games need apparently most gamers disagree.

It's already been mentioned about all the creative and unique titles with characters people DID like that they abandoned.

It's way too easy to see how he was the president of marketing at one time.


 
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3. Re: Lucasarts... Jun 6, 2005, 11:31 The Half Elf
 
Then why the hell did ya dump Sam and Max 2, and Full Throttle 2?

Or better yet, give me a Xwing: Alliance sequal that lets me totally decide if I want to help the Alliance, Imperials, or a neutral path.

Sorry Jim but not everyone has Bioware's Story Dept. (battlefront 1 and 2 for example)

 
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"I've never seen a feature like this before. It warms your ass. It's wonderful" -Walter Bishop
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2. Curt Schilling Jun 6, 2005, 11:18 Jim
 
Certainly you have had a lot more time to play since you have been out with an injury. Do you know yet if your going to be able to come back next season?

Last I heard was that he was hoping to return to the mound after the all-star break. Hopefully he's not out for the whole season (although technically, next season is after the all-star break).

This comment was edited on Jun 6, 11:18.
 
Jim
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1. Lucas Arts quote Jun 6, 2005, 11:17 Gandhi
 
Ha! - may be that is why Lucas Arts decided to dump the team pushing out those adventure titles like Grim Fandango and start pumping out Star Wars games with the same tired old story.

May be what Jim Ward is talking about is that he does not want new and unique stories in games but wants the same old same old digested and regurgitated back on to the heathen masses.

You cannot make anything fool-proof. The fools are too inventive
 
Avatar 11944
 
You cannot make anything fool-proof. The fools are too inventive

GW: Tr Gandhi (Ra), Shiva Sung (Mo), Mangal Pandey (Ne), Rana Pratap Singh (Wa), Boddhi Satwa (Ri), Bhagat Singh (De), Bahadur Shastri (Pa)
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