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Esequiel

Xbox Series S | X Console Discussion

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I think you might be partaking in a bit of internet-hyperbole. Extremely ropey?

Well I wasn't exaggerating. To me the facial animations and visuals looked very outdated, while the gameplay on planets (particularly in terms of mining resources) looked a lot like No Man's Sky at launch. The combat also looked very lacking. And the promise of a thousand planets means that there's going to be procedural generation in place of properly handcrafted content. 

You may think I'm overexaggerating but we've seen games like Anthem and No Man's Sky fare very badly for having these sorts of issues. Don't get me wrong, I can see this game appealing to some people but it really didn't look great to me.

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Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

while the gameplay on planets (particularly in terms of mining resources) looked a lot like No Man's Sky at launch

The shooting of COD looks a lot like the shooting in Battlefield?

The racing in GT looks a lot like the racing in Forza Motorsport?

The punching in Street Fighter looks a lot like the punching in Tekken?

Games look similar to each other.

How else do you want a character to collect ore from a planet rather than shoot a mining laser at it? A Minecraft pickaxe? Can't think of many other options.

54 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

The combat also looked very lacking.

Good thing this is an RPG, not a shooter then.

54 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

And the promise of a thousand planets means that there's going to be procedural generation in place of properly handcrafted content. 

Procedural generation is fine if the balance is right. You don't know what that balance will be, so are in no position to comment at this stage. There could be tons of hand-crafted content, who knows.

Edited by Ronnie

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9 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

The shooting of COD looks a lot like the shooting in Battlefield?

The racing in GT looks a lot like the racing in Forza Motorsport?

The punching in Street Fighter looks a lot like the punching in Tekken?

Games look similar to each other.

"No Man's Sky resource farming" is a very specific description, not something broad simply like "racing cars". And you know what - resource farming in NMS, particularly at launch, was very dull.

I believe you've mistaken the point I was making. I don't care if a game copied/resembled another, I care whether what it's resembling was something that was fun.

9 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

How else do you want a character to collect ore from a planet rather than shoot a mining laser at it? A Minecraft pickaxe? Can't think of many other options.

Well there's explosives, which is how modern mining is done. Not gonna lie, I was confused/amused by this bit of your post. The way you typed this, it's we though you're suggesting that using a "mining laser" (think Dr Evil air quotes)  is more or less the obvious, default way you'd ever think to mine, with a pickaxe being little more than a curiosity. I mean, you rarely mined like this in games before No Man's Sky, on account of this not reflecting how mining is done in reality. Most of all though it just wasn't very fun to do in No Man's Sky.

9 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Good thing this is an RPG, not a shooter then.

So it's ok that part of it doesn't look fun because of its stated genre?

9 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Procedural generation is fine if the balance is right. You don't know what that balance will be, so are in no position to comment at this stage. There could be tons of hand-crafted content, who knows.

Don't derend this. Boasting about having 1,000 planets is something devs might have done in the 2000s or early 2010s. It's very Skyrim-esque, actually (the whole "See that mountain? You can go there!"). You can't make 1,000 planets have the same level of detail and craft to them as a small cluster of fully hand-designed ones. Elements will be randomised and procedurally generated to reach that 1,000 number. And to what end? Not like anyone is ever going to travel to 1,000 planets anyway. Is it purely to wow people with a large number?

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

I believe you've mistaken the point I was making. I don't care if a game copied/resembled another, I care whether what it's resembling was something that was fun.

I just frankly couldn't believe someone can think that the build of Starfield we were shown looked in any way as shallow as NMS at launch, so I figured your point was more specific to actual game mechanics. 

39 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

Don't derend this.

How about you don't judge a game when you literally have no idea whatsoever about the balance between hand-crafted and procedural generation? Starfield could have Witcher 3 levels of content plus all the procedural generation on top of that. Or it could be another NMS in that department. We just don't know, so it's pointless to judge before we do.

Edited by Ronnie

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How about you don't judge a game when you literally have no idea whatsoever about the balance between hand-crafted and procedural generation? Starfield could have Witcher 3 levels of content plus all the procedural generation on top of that. Or it could be another NMS in that department. We just don't know, so it's pointless to judge before we do.

I will absolutely judge it when they've - 1. Shown gameplay for the purpose of judging (they're hoping people judge favourably), and 2. Made the claim about 1,000 planets, coupled with showing gameplay and visuals on some of those planets. Even if they've made the planets interesting enough to visit, why make 1,000? There's going to be repeated elements to achieve that, and it's not like people are going to visit 1,000. Feels like they're sacrificing quality game design here just to boast of a high number.

I'm not the only to have thought this, there's an article on Kotaku saying much the same thing. Interestingly they point to a similar situation with Dying Light 2, where the devs boasted about the main game taking 500 hours to complete. Similarly that was a boast of a large number that backfired - the devs obviously thought that sounded good but it was not well received, since it suggests bloat and/or repetitive design. They then had to issue a series of clarifications to make the number sound smaller!

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Posted (edited)

It’s not hard to see the similarities between No Man’s Sky and Starfield.  I mean, Starfield is basically NMS with the serial numbers filed off and a story/spaceship builder added on top.

If you like NMS, you’ll probably like Starfield when it comes out.

Edited by Dcubed

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Sheikah said:

I will absolutely judge it when they've - 1. Shown gameplay for the purpose of judging (they're hoping people judge favourably),

You can judge whether you think the game looks good and interesting at this stage, but don't make assumptions about things you (or anyone else here) have no clue about. Wait for the facts about the amount of content, then bring them into your argument. 

Anyway, moving on :blank:, a great interview from IGN's Ryan McCaffrey with Todd Howard. The guy is refreshingly open and honest about the game, and dives into

- the balance between procedural generation and hand-crafted content (he says it's their biggest game ever in terms of hand-crafted, 200K lines of dialogue, 3x that of Cyberpunk), why they went with 1000 planets, 

- how much depth the space combat has (assigning power to 6 different systems in dog-fighting, three different weapon types, docking stations and ships, boarding ships, stealing ships, smuggling)

- length of the game (30/40 hour main quest)

and lots more, definitely worth a watch...

 

Edited by Ronnie

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You can judge whether you think the game looks good and interesting at this stage, but don't make assumptions about things you (or anyone else here) have no clue about. Wait for the facts about the amount of content, then bring them into your argument. 
Anyway, moving on :blank:, a great interview from IGN's Ryan McCaffrey with Todd Howard. The guy is refreshingly open and honest about the game, and dives into
- the balance between procedural generation and hand-crafted content (he says it's their biggest game ever in terms of hand-crafted, 200K lines of dialogue, 3x that of Cyberpunk), why they went with 1000 planets, 
- how much depth the space combat has (assigning power to 6 different systems in dog-fighting, three different weapon types, docking stations and ships, boarding ships, stealing ships, smuggling)
- length of the game (30/40 hour main quest)
and lots more, definitely worth a watch...
 

Here's the thing - you can judge whenever you want, that's fundamentally how it works. They show footage or reveal information, and people judge it. And they want you to judge it - that's why they're telling us about these things (like having over 1,000 planets). They want you to make a positive judgement based on the information they reveal. It was basically a backfire - they thought it would come across as a good thing.

Negative reactions can also help though - you'd think they'd rather hear now what people don't like then change their game accordingly, than nobody say anything and for the game to later bomb. Remember when 343/Microsoft got negative feedback on Halo Infinite? They delayed the game and made it better.

In this case where they've said there's "over 1,000 planets", you seem adamant that we should "wait and see" the finished game before making judgement. I disagree there. How can there be over 1,000 fully unique, handcrafted planets? We're not talking small levels here - planets. It's impossible. There will be either repeated sections, textures, creatures, quest types, etc., or some kind of algorithm (think No Man's Sky) to make variations in content, in a pretty see through way. Whichever way they go with it we're not going to see the same quality as if there we just a few planets that were entirely handcrafted.

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, Sheikah said:


Here's the thing - you can judge whenever you want, that's fundamentally how it works. They show footage or reveal information, and people judge it. And they want you to judge it - that's why they're telling us about these things (like having over 1,000 planets). They want you to make a positive judgement based on the information they reveal. It was basically a backfire - they thought it would come across as a good thing.

Negative reactions can also help though - you'd think they'd rather hear now what people don't like then change their game accordingly, than nobody say anything and for the game to later bomb. Remember when 343/Microsoft got negative feedback on Halo Infinite? They delayed the game and made it better.

In this case where they've said there's "over 1,000 planets", you seem adamant that we should "wait and see" the finished game before making judgement. I disagree there. How can there be over 1,000 fully unique, handcrafted planets? We're not talking small levels here - planets. It's impossible. There will be either repeated sections, textures, creatures, quest types, etc., or some kind of algorithm (think No Man's Sky) to make variations in content, in a pretty see through way. Whichever way they go with it we're not going to see the same quality as if there we just a few planets that were entirely handcrafted.

You can judge whatever you want before the full picture is revealed, it'll just come across as a bit misplaced and premature. At best.

A game about traversing the galaxy and exploring unknown places. Of course there will be procedural generation. Almost every big budget game has procedural generation to some degree. If you watch the video above, Todd Howard explains the reasoning. It's a great interview.

People were excited by the prospect of procedurally generated planets in NMS, the issue was the rest of the game and gameplay had the depth of a puddle. Starfield likely won't have that problem.

Edited by Ronnie

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You can judge whatever you want before the full picture is revealed, it'll just come across as a bit misplaced and premature. At best.

Not when it comes to the boast of there being "over 1,000 planets". We can immediately understand that there will be limitations that come with hitting that number.
A game about traversing the galaxy and exploring unknown places. Of course there will be procedural generation. Almost every big budget game has procedural generation to some degree. If you watch the video above, Todd Howard explains the reasoning. It's a great interview.

You don't need a lot of procedural generation at all. Look at Outer Wilds, easily one of the best games ever made, IMO. All the planets were intricately designed, and by a tiny team. There's certainly not 1,000 planets in that game, but there really doesn't need to be, which is my point.
It's not that I necessarily mind that there'll be some procedural generation, it's that there'll be a lot of it in order to hit that 1,000+ planets.
People were excited by the prospect of procedurally generated planets in NMS, the issue was the rest of the game and gameplay had the depth of a puddle. Starfield likely won't have that problem.

You're quite right that people were excited by the prospect of NMS, but then they got burned by the reality of it. In fact, them saying there's "over 1,000 planets" makes me immediately think of NMS and the repetitive planets (and strange computer randomised creatures).

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Posted (edited)
36 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

It's not that I necessarily mind that there'll be some procedural generation, it's that there'll be a lot of it in order to hit that 1,000+ planets.

What does it matter if it has a full AAA games-worth of hand-crafted content on top of that?

36 minutes ago, Sheikah said:

You're quite right that people were excited by the prospect of NMS, but then they got burned by the reality of it.

That was literally all NMS had. Starfield is an RPG with a 30/40 hour main quest and 200K lines of dialogue.

Edited by Ronnie

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What does it matter if it has a full AAA games-worth of hand-crafted content on top of that?

Let's give it the benefit of the doubt and assume it has 4 or 5 worlds that everyone will visit through the course of the story and are designed with care. My question is, what is the point of those 1,000+ extra optional planets that they procedurally generated? I'd argue they'd be better off spending their time and resources on more of those hand-designed planets than working on an algorithm. I'm all for more curated experiences these days - going back to Outer Wilds, it completely floored me in terms of its design. You simply can't beat hand-designed worlds.

That was literally all NMS had. Starfield is an RPG with a 30/40 hour main quest and 200K lines of dialogue.

No Man's Sky has thousands of lines of dialogue too. In fact, millions! Because you can bet your ass it uses procedural generation in creating those lines.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Sheikah said:

Let's give it the benefit of the doubt and assume it has 4 or 5 worlds that everyone will visit through the course of the story and are designed with care. My question is, what is the point of those 1,000+ extra optional planets that they procedurally generated? I'd argue they'd be better off spending their time and resources on more of those hand-designed planets than working on an algorithm. I'm all for more curated experiences these days - going back to Outer Wilds, it completely floored me in terms of its design. You simply can't beat hand-designed worlds.

That's why you're (probably) not a game designer. The beauty of games like these is that they have layers of different types of content, which you pick and choose to do depending on whatever mood you're in, be it following the main quest, doing shorter side missions, or just chilling running around the world and gathering resources or progress ticking boxes. 

And it's not a case of 'get rid of the more casual content' and add another 5 hours to the main or side quests. It has to be a full spectrum.

If you watch the video, he quite clearly explains that once you procedurally generate a handful of planets (out of necessity for the core story), it's not much of a leap to do that 1000 times.

Plus, let's be real, the entire premise of the game is about exploring the universe. Having 5 hand crafted players is the antithesis of that.

Outer Wilds is great (or so I hear) but it's a different game, with a completely different design/purpose, and that's ok.

Edited by Ronnie

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That's why you're (probably) not a game designer. The beauty of games like these is that they have layers of different types of content, which you pick and choose to do depending on whatever mood you're in, be it following the main quest, doing shorter side missions, or just chilling running around the world and gathering resources or progress ticking boxes. 
And it's not a case of 'get rid of the more casual content' and add another 5 hours to the main or side quests. It has to be a full spectrum.
If you watch the video, he quite clearly explains that once you procedurally generate a handful of planets (out of necessity for the core story), it's not much of a leap to do that 1000 times.
Plus, let's be real, the entire premise of the game is about exploring the universe. Having 5 hand crafted players is the antithesis of that.
Outer Wilds is great (or so I hear) but it's a different game, with a completely different design/purpose, and that's ok.

I actually read his IGN interview and he makes the procedurally generated planets sound quite dull, rather like those in No Man's Sky. I still don't get the point of spending time adding boring content into a game, but I guess we will see when the game launches how that plays out.

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