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Reply 4241 of 4467, by newtmonkey

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badmojo wrote on 2022-09-14, 21:25:

Sounds very interesting! I've put the remake on my GOG wishlist 👍

I've read that it's a really good remake, and even adds some stuff (areas, quests)! I plan on playing it once I complete parts 1-5 haha.

Reply 4242 of 4467, by gerry

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Shreddoc wrote on 2022-09-13, 00:43:

It seems that some people have the proclivities to enjoy open world games, but on the other hand they simply don't work for some other people, the way their minds and preferences work.

I think open world games and sandbox games have tended to (and still do) "over promise and under deliver" in the sense that the actual variety of things to do that might be envisioned seems always less when experienced in the game

it would be difficult to program a game where the player can do 'anything' within the physical possibilities of the setting let alone all the possible interactions with others etc

even the most ambitious mix of pre-programmed events and procedurally generated scenarios tend toward repetition within a confining set of possibilities

imagine an RPG where you can take up adventure, or stop by a town and learn to farm, or join a band of thieves or a mix of all of those in an utterly open ended way (not as scripted and repeating 'side missions') and where what the player does persists in a realistic manner in the game world. That would signal a shift from 'open world' towards 'simulated world'

Reply 4243 of 4467, by badmojo

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Yes I think the best open world games limit you in some way and have a good fundamental mechanic to keep you coming back. Gothic 1 and 2 are the open world games always come to mind for me - exploration is always rewarded, and although the world is open you can't just wander around wherever you want initially because you'll die. And the combat is challenging and enjoyable generally speaking, not just button mashing.

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Reply 4245 of 4467, by Shreddoc

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badmojo wrote on 2022-09-15, 23:22:

Yes I think the best open world games limit you in some way and have a good fundamental mechanic to keep you coming back. Gothic 1 and 2 are the open world games always come to mind for me - exploration is always rewarded, and although the world is open you can't just wander around wherever you want initially because you'll die. And the combat is challenging and enjoyable generally speaking, not just button mashing.

gerry wrote on 2022-09-15, 11:25:
I think open world games and sandbox games have tended to (and still do) "over promise and under deliver" in the sense that the […]
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Shreddoc wrote on 2022-09-13, 00:43:

It seems that some people have the proclivities to enjoy open world games, but on the other hand they simply don't work for some other people, the way their minds and preferences work.

I think open world games and sandbox games have tended to (and still do) "over promise and under deliver" in the sense that the actual variety of things to do that might be envisioned seems always less when experienced in the game

it would be difficult to program a game where the player can do 'anything' within the physical possibilities of the setting let alone all the possible interactions with others etc

even the most ambitious mix of pre-programmed events and procedurally generated scenarios tend toward repetition within a confining set of possibilities

imagine an RPG where you can take up adventure, or stop by a town and learn to farm, or join a band of thieves or a mix of all of those in an utterly open ended way (not as scripted and repeating 'side missions') and where what the player does persists in a realistic manner in the game world. That would signal a shift from 'open world' towards 'simulated world'

Good point about open worlds under delivering in some ways. They are still procedural and scripted. The difference mainly being how far you need to travel and how many people you need to talk to; the fact that quest goals aren't immediately shoved in your face.

It's true about interaction constraints limiting immersion, too. I think that's why Zelda:BOTW ultimately works quite well - the freedom of movement, particularly the climbing. Unlike most other such games, it's not a farce of walking around bumping into impassable terrain and fences. If you can see it, you can get there. The actual game itself almost takes a back seat to the simple enjoyment of traversing the world.

I think the concept of simulated worlds is in constant evolution, in gaming, and also in projects like Second Life and (in ambition) the "meta verse". Fictions such as Tad Williams' Otherland have already put forward in great detail the notion of hyper-sophisticated VR rigs and virtual world to match. Indeed these fictions explore as an ultimate goal, the idea of transferring human consciousness into said virtual world. Currently sci-fi, but it's indicative of what people dream about.

They want to create worlds, and live in them. In the sense that (as they say) Life Imitates Art, and vice-versa - and, seeing the pace of advancements over the past 100 years - it's freaky to imagine what will have developed 100 years from now. Presuming we as a species don't get overly distracted by self-nukings and self-pandemickings and self-climate-screwing in the meantime! :p

Reply 4246 of 4467, by Shagittarius

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I don't have quite a rosy picture of open world games, Breath of the Wild, The latest Mario...these games are some of the tightest open world games around, the problem is tight open world games end up feeling like a collection of mini games with travel time. The games that are more open world and not as tight just tend to meander and lose anyone who isn't into that or doesn't have a good focus remaining on task and ignoring the worthless other items thrown in open world games.

Personally I'll take a tightly designed challenge based on gameplay and scenarios and no time wasting in between. I don't feel any more like I'm the star of the game because you let me think I'm making up my own story.

Reply 4247 of 4467, by NovaCN

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I think the best structure for an open world type of game is something like Yakuza, where instead of a massive world that dazzles with scale but is ultimately either barren with large stretches of nothing (the Bethesda approach) or filled with meaningless copy-pasted busywork (the Ubisoft sandbox), you have a relatively small map (say, a few blocks of a city) that by keeping the scope modest can be packed to the absolute brim with tiny atmospheric touches and interactions and innumerable activities and side-stories that carry real substance and meaning without sacrificing immersion. Basically Shenmue, but actually executed well.
Of course Yakuza has its own problems—I personally can't stand the combat in most of them—but in terms of setting I rarely see games that do it better.

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Reply 4248 of 4467, by newtmonkey

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Geneforge (PC)
I thought for sure I was approaching the end of the game, but I guess not. I've been exploring the north side of the map, and it seems like every area I explore opens up one or two new areas. It's a much larger game than I expected.

Combat was getting a bit dull (easy) for a while as I thought I had figured it all out. The game threw me a curveball, though, with some very difficult areas I had a lot of trouble getting through. Even so, the game is flexible enough that this isn't much of an issue, really. In order to "get through" an area, all you need to do is reach the exit, so in the worst case scenario you could just sacrifice your creations as you rush through the area and get your character to the exit. There are also multiple paths throughout the world map, and you can often just bypass a particularly difficult area completely by going around it.

The world design in this game is fantastic. You are just selecting areas to explore from a static 2D map, but all the areas feel like they naturally lead to one another. It feels a lot like Baldur's Gate, how the areas are selected from a map but actually almost fit together perfectly. One area might be a valley leading to a gate, and the next area is after the gate, followed by the entrance to a mine, leading to a larger mine complex. A lot of the areas are interconnected, and it's extremely satisfying to get through a difficult set of areas, and finally link that last area with some area in another part of the map. It really begins to feel like you are exploring an actual island, and not just a bunch of areas selected on a map screen.

Anyway, unless the game becomes horrible from now on, this is going to end up being in my top 5 games completed in 2022. Awesome RPG!

Reply 4249 of 4467, by liqmat

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badmojo wrote on 2022-09-15, 23:22:

Yes I think the best open world games limit you in some way and have a good fundamental mechanic to keep you coming back. Gothic 1 and 2 are the open world games always come to mind for me - exploration is always rewarded, and although the world is open you can't just wander around wherever you want initially because you'll die. And the combat is challenging and enjoyable generally speaking, not just button mashing.

Speaking of which... GOG has an amazing sale on the Gothic series right now that I could not resist. I picked up 1, 2, & 3 for less than $10 total (I read 4, now just called Arcania, is not very good). Great deal. I remember really enjoying the Gothic 2 demo many moons ago. Hopefully I have time for these over the winter.

(っ•́。•́)♪♬

Reply 4250 of 4467, by appiah4

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I look forward to playing Return to Monkey Island soon. Like, on Monday.

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Reply 4252 of 4467, by Joseph_Joestar

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liqmat wrote on 2022-09-16, 14:51:

Speaking of which... GOG has an amazing sale on the Gothic series right now that I could not resist. I picked up 1, 2, & 3 for less than $10 total (I read 4, now just called Arcania, is not very good). Great deal. I remember really enjoying the Gothic 2 demo many moons ago. Hopefully I have time for these over the winter.

Get Risen 1 as well.

It feels very reminiscent of the first two Gothic games, basically combining their best parts. Developed by the same team as well.

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Reply 4253 of 4467, by clueless1

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badmojo wrote on 2022-09-15, 23:22:

Yes I think the best open world games limit you in some way and have a good fundamental mechanic to keep you coming back. Gothic 1 and 2 are the open world games always come to mind for me - exploration is always rewarded, and although the world is open you can't just wander around wherever you want initially because you'll die. And the combat is challenging and enjoyable generally speaking, not just button mashing.

Easily my favorite open world RPG is Kingdom Come: Deliverance. Such a great experience. The world felt alive and I actually enjoyed exploring forests completely outside of any missions because they hid just enough nuggets in them to make it real. You might come across a hat on a stone, which leads to exploring around the area. Then you find a blood trail and follow it to someone who was ambushed. Further exploration around the area might find an old campsite and possibly some loot. There are also several caves to explore, abandoned or burned down homesteads (some with hidden basements that could yield loot), etc. The main quest is tight and easy to follow, so are side quests. I never felt like I had no idea what to do next. Combat was challenging and fun (especially with the bow). Just thinking back to it makes me want to play it again. To this day it's the only open world RPG I've ever completed. I spent over 200 hours playing it.

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Reply 4254 of 4467, by liqmat

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2022-09-17, 06:20:

Get Risen 1 as well.

It feels very reminiscent of the first two Gothic games, basically combining their best parts. Developed by the same team as well.

Did not realize that was the same team. Also, on sale for $2.49 @ GOG. So all four for a cool $10. Not bad at all! Thanks for the tip.

(っ•́。•́)♪♬

Reply 4256 of 4467, by newtmonkey

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Geneforge (PC)
I completed this early this morning. It's been some time since I've been so addicted to a game, but I simply could not put this game down.

Great exploration in a large open-ended world, tons of fun choices to make throughout the game, and an intruiguing setting all come together for a truly excellent RPG. As the game progressed, I went from simply wanting to escape the island, to wanting to help the creatures my ancestors left to fend for themselves in an extremely hostile environment, to becoming power hungry and self-serving. The wonderful thing is, none of that was imposed on me by the plot, because these were all based on choices I made throughout the game. The amount of freedom the games gives you is impressive. You can join one of three competing factions, or not join any of them at all. You eventually meet powerful beings you can work with, or destroy, or even just ignore. Similar to Fallout, the ending consists of a few screens of illustrations and text, with the content reflecting the choices you made throughout the game. A very satisfying conclusion.

I was very impressed with how interesting each and every area was to explore. It's a similar setup to Baldur's Gate, with you selecting areas to explore from a map screen, and "unlocking" new areas by reaching individual exits in each area. Unlike with BG, each and every area in Geneforge is interesting in one way or another, with some areas having unique gimmicks to really make them stand out (for example, one area has you exploring an unstable power station core, which causes damage over time as you explore).

I chose to play the game as a Shaper (summoner). My build focused almost exclusively on Shaper skills (with some points in the Leadership and Mechanics skills), so my character was always one or two hits away from death. That meant I mostly had to hide behind walls, etc. during combat, and rely on my creations to fight for me (if you give a creation at least two points in Intelligence, you will have full control of it in combat). I also had to rush through (or simply ignore) some of the more dangerous areas; this was not a problem at all as the more difficult/annoying areas tend to be optional. The game does a good job of giving you multiple ways to obtain crucial items, and I never felt like I was stuck or forced to keep throwing myself at a difficult area.

I have only minor complaints with the game.

Mines are used far too often in some areas, and there's nothing fun about them. You either have the correct wand to destroy them safely, or you soak up the damage as you walk through them. Each color of mine has a corresponding wand, but I never could tell just from looking at a mine what color it was (I'm not colorblind, but they all look the same). Each wand only has a certain number of charges, so you really don't want to waste them.

Combat is not bad, but it's not great either... and there's way too much of it. What's worse, enemies stop giving you experience points when you are clearly much more powerful than them, so combat starts to feel less rewarding the stronger you get.

Anyway, they are just minor annoyances, and I can honestly say that I enjoyed almost every minute of the 40 or so hours it took to complete the game. I don't tend to replay RPGs, but I could see myself replaying this one in a couple years, either playing as the same class but making different choices, or playing as a different class. I might save that replay for the remake, however.

Reply 4257 of 4467, by NovaCN

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RiverBoa wrote on 2022-09-17, 18:54:

I've been playing through some of the FMV games that span multiple disks. I'm working on the Tsunami games now, Silent Steel and Flash Traffic.

I've only ever played FMV games via Steam/GOG releases or by ripping the CDs into iso files. I can't imagine how maddening it must be to play them if you have to physically swap discs.

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Reply 4258 of 4467, by clueless1

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newtmonkey wrote on 2022-09-18, 05:37:
Geneforge (PC) I completed this early this morning. It's been some time since I've been so addicted to a game, but I simply cou […]
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Geneforge (PC)
I completed this early this morning. It's been some time since I've been so addicted to a game, but I simply could not put this game down.

Great exploration in a large open-ended world, tons of fun choices to make throughout the game, and an intruiguing setting all come together for a truly excellent RPG. As the game progressed, I went from simply wanting to escape the island, to wanting to help the creatures my ancestors left to fend for themselves in an extremely hostile environment, to becoming power hungry and self-serving. The wonderful thing is, none of that was imposed on me by the plot, because these were all based on choices I made throughout the game. The amount of freedom the games gives you is impressive. You can join one of three competing factions, or not join any of them at all. You eventually meet powerful beings you can work with, or destroy, or even just ignore. Similar to Fallout, the ending consists of a few screens of illustrations and text, with the content reflecting the choices you made throughout the game. A very satisfying conclusion.

I was very impressed with how interesting each and every area was to explore. It's a similar setup to Baldur's Gate, with you selecting areas to explore from a map screen, and "unlocking" new areas by reaching individual exits in each area. Unlike with BG, each and every area in Geneforge is interesting in one way or another, with some areas having unique gimmicks to really make them stand out (for example, one area has you exploring an unstable power station core, which causes damage over time as you explore).

I chose to play the game as a Shaper (summoner). My build focused almost exclusively on Shaper skills (with some points in the Leadership and Mechanics skills), so my character was always one or two hits away from death. That meant I mostly had to hide behind walls, etc. during combat, and rely on my creations to fight for me (if you give a creation at least two points in Intelligence, you will have full control of it in combat). I also had to rush through (or simply ignore) some of the more dangerous areas; this was not a problem at all as the more difficult/annoying areas tend to be optional. The game does a good job of giving you multiple ways to obtain crucial items, and I never felt like I was stuck or forced to keep throwing myself at a difficult area.

I have only minor complaints with the game.

Mines are used far too often in some areas, and there's nothing fun about them. You either have the correct wand to destroy them safely, or you soak up the damage as you walk through them. Each color of mine has a corresponding wand, but I never could tell just from looking at a mine what color it was (I'm not colorblind, but they all look the same). Each wand only has a certain number of charges, so you really don't want to waste them.

Combat is not bad, but it's not great either... and there's way too much of it. What's worse, enemies stop giving you experience points when you are clearly much more powerful than them, so combat starts to feel less rewarding the stronger you get.

Anyway, they are just minor annoyances, and I can honestly say that I enjoyed almost every minute of the 40 or so hours it took to complete the game. I don't tend to replay RPGs, but I could see myself replaying this one in a couple years, either playing as the same class but making different choices, or playing as a different class. I might save that replay for the remake, however.

Is it possible to save before using a wand, then restore and try again if you pick the wrong one?

Ultima VI: The False Prophet
I started back up on this game after a week of not playing. I think the only thing keeping me going at this point is nostalgia. It's fun, but not so much so that I can't wait to get back to it. I've made a couple of trips back and forth from Cyclops Cave to Britain to lug all the powder kegs to my home base. In the meantime, the cyclopes have been respawning so I'm killing them for XP. The character that lands the killing blow gets the XP, so I've been passing turns to even out the XP distribution between the Avatar, Dupre, Shamino and Iolo. For the first time, I encountered a ghost in Cyclops Cave, and killed it despite it not attacking. Mistake? Karma reduction? No, I just checked with the cheat code ALT-213 and my Karma is 99 (maxed out). But I found it interesting that on my way back to Britain, I encountered a cat on the road outside of Michael's house (northeast of Skara Brae and southeast of Cyclops Cave) and it started following and attacking for no reason. It does little to no damage, so I've been trying to ignore it, but it followed me all the way back to Lord British's castle. I may have to lead it out to a unimportant area, then moongate travel away to get it off my tail. Perhaps it's a Kilrathi? 😉

edit: After ditching the cat, the next time I walked by Michael's house, it was there again and resumed attacking me. I finally just killed it. Literally moments later, I encountered some mongbats on the road that were fighting with humans and killed them with some effort. They are tough. I wonder if I let the cat follow me to this battle, if the mongbats would've killed the cat for me?

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Reply 4259 of 4467, by Joakim

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I've recently put my pcs to rest and bought a SNES which I enjoy enormously. At the moment I'm playing donkey Kong country 1 and it's awesome. I'm a bit disappointed neither of my two old 1280x1024 displays works with my OSSC though, not sure if there is s setting or if I need to get yet an other screen. My modern tv in the living room accepts it though.