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Old 14th May 2012, 02:33 PM   #1
hal
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Cliff Bleszinski's Game Dev Remedies

Cliff Bleszinski chats it up with Gamasutra about a variety of topics including improving Japanese games, saving the horror genre, random game ideas, and this bit on replayability via mini sandbox scenarios:

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Yeah, well that's Halo's combat bowls, right? We tried to get more bowl-like in Gears 3, and in the future we'll continue to get more bowl-like and just overall less linear. This is my thing I've stuck to -- the more replayable your game is, the better of a game it is, even if you never replay it once.

And that's the big block that people often use with replayability. They say, "Nobody replays games; don't bother making it replayable!" No, you're frigging wrong. You're wrong because the player has more decisions, and more ways to play the game their way, and then it just drives conversations and YouTube videos, and all that stuff.
Obviously, the mini sandbox scenarios aren't great for every game. Sometimes storytelling is weakened when your attention isn't funneled in the right direction. Alan Wake does a nice job for the most part of giving you enough room to find a secret or two, but keeping things tight so the urgency of the storyline isn't lost. I'd love to see a sandbox Unreal, Cliff. Make it happen!

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Old 14th May 2012, 10:35 PM   #2
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Mini sandbox, mini RPG elements, multi player experience merged into single player, I'd like to see all of these happen in Unreal. That could make an intriguingly different Unreal.
Storytelling is more about believable characters(animation,dialogue,voice), logical objectives and choices, and an immersive world (atmosphere) which makes you feel like you are actually in it.

The worst a new Unreal game could be, is runing from one point to another, to finish objective ABC, and gun gun gun, with boring scripted cinematic all over the linear path.
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Old 15th May 2012, 04:17 AM   #3
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With the exception of the RPG elements, I'm inclined to agree. I'd like to see a more 'open world' game that just dumps you in the environment and lets you unveil the story at whatever pace. RPG elements tend to feel too cold / statistical for that kind of game and ruin the immersion for me.
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Old 15th May 2012, 04:37 AM   #4
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A sort of Metroidvania approach would be cool for a new Unreal (still fps, of course).
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Old 15th May 2012, 05:16 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by ambershee View Post
With the exception of the RPG elements, I'm inclined to agree. I'd like to see a more 'open world' game that just dumps you in the environment and lets you unveil the story at whatever pace. RPG elements tend to feel too cold / statistical for that kind of game and ruin the immersion for me.
RPG doesn't have to be all about statistics. Just like when we say shooter elements, doesn't necessarily meaning FPS gun and run elements.
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Old 15th May 2012, 11:12 AM   #6
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But Unreal was already pretty nonlinear (from the level-design viewpoint, which especially became evident when you played it in coop with friends) for a game with linear mission progress. That's also the main reason I replayed it so many times.
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Old 15th May 2012, 11:23 AM   #7
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That's what I mean - dump the linear mission progress; let the player explore. I don't mean pull a Skyrim and go too far, but something like a Far Cry 2 / STALKER, where you can just go and wander.
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Old 15th May 2012, 09:18 PM   #8
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That's what I mean - dump the linear mission progress; let the player explore. I don't mean pull a Skyrim and go too far, but something like a Far Cry 2 / STALKER, where you can just go and wander.
FC2 or Stalker, they are still too big sandbox to be feasible for Unreal. And FC2 is an example showing how bad the gameplay could be if the designer doesn't know why/what is crucial for a sandbox.
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Old 15th May 2012, 09:26 PM   #9
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feasible for Unreal
wat

Maybe in your little world. I think Unreal would be awesome with FC2 and STALKER style gameplay. I would probably lean more toward System Shock 2 style tbh, but more open since it's a planet.

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Old 16th May 2012, 12:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaginal Epiphany View Post
But Unreal was already pretty nonlinear (from the level-design viewpoint, which especially became evident when you played it in coop with friends) for a game with linear mission progress. That's also the main reason I replayed it so many times.
And it was meant to be even less linear than as it got released in the end, if you have read the old previews/other stuff, you would know that they wanted Unreal to be pretty much a continuous world (actually citing Metroid as inspiration even in the Next generation magazine) or even made it at one point and there was a working day-night change even if simple and monsters that would come only at night or so (all mentioned in the magazine previews), they wrapped it up in the end to fake hubs in the end where you could choose one map or another first (like the 98 leak having you the ability to choose chizra first or dig, but both are practically needed to unlock way to Dark Arena).

The Nagomi passage in RTNP is pretty much a stripped down leftover of such hubs too, even though both times you visit it it is different map file in RTNP therefore its even more fake and not a hub map at all since you don't return to same filename, but the same map was known as FHUB5 in the leak and you could go either to Foundry, Nexus(Inoxx crypt map, cut from unreal and rtnp) or aztec(basically bigger version of what became velora temple in rtnp) from the same map.

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Old 16th May 2012, 03:04 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SleepyHe4d View Post
wat

Maybe in your little world. I think Unreal would be awesome with FC2 and STALKER style gameplay. I would probably lean more toward System Shock 2 style tbh, but more open since it's a planet.
So you fancy FC2? Good for you.
I am not saying Unreal CAN NOT EVER be a big sandbox game. What I mean is a big sandbox game is very hard to make and get polished. And it will feel different from the original Unreal, that's something you have to concern for the fans.
But that's just a choice. If Epic would choose to do that, and figure out the way to do it right, I am OK with that. I like sandbox games too, but there are many bad examples out there, and I don't want anther one.

Last edited by moonflyer; 16th May 2012 at 03:12 AM.
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Old 16th May 2012, 09:44 AM   #12
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FC2 was not a good example of a sandbox game, Loved the STALKER games and FC1 though.

I wouldn't mind a sandbox version of Unreal, It would fit the theme of the original game perfectly... Crashed spaceship on unexplored planet. Explore and find a way off.

Tho I have no faith in Epic anymore as a developer, they would just screw it up with chest high walls, QTE, bad implementation, unfunny humor and design it for iOS.

At best the Pc would see a bad port at some point after its released on other formats.

Last edited by Severin; 16th May 2012 at 10:07 AM.
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