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    BlackDragon

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    Default Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Of Orcs and Men Website

    I saw an add for this on steam, and watched the trailer.

    Color me... interested. Does people here have any idea if its some sort of cooperative action game? Or a Single-player action game? Or maybe some sort of action RPG?

    The theme and story of this game really intrigues me.. What do you think?

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Could be interested, however the studio (to my knowledge) has never made a decent game, a few sprts games, a couple very bad licensed Game of Thrones games and...that's all I can think of. So we'll see how this turns out, given their padt record.
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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Got the game yesterday. I am in the middle of the first level...

    I have to say, the writing so far is solid. The characters are real. The action is.. interesting, albeit a bit chaotic. I still need to get my bearings.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Looks interesting, might get it eventually.
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    This game looks mighty interesting. Sadly, there's no demo and I'm not in the position to buy games right now. I guess I'll keep it in mind for when I have some money to spend.
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    I can't speak to Game of Thrones: Genesis, Cyanide's Song of Ice and Fire RTS, not having played it.

    Game of Thrones, the RPG however is excellent, as far as I'm concerned the second best story in gaming this year - behind Spec Ops: The Line. And it's actually pretty close up there, which is saying something.* The use of two player characters in particular is fascinating, and allows them to do stuff with the story that, so far as I'm aware, is pretty much completely unique. I know a lot of people didn't really like the combat, but I found it one of the more enjoyable versions of real-time pause fighting I've seen (or in this case, real-time extreme slowdown).

    Can't tell you anything about Of Orcs and Men, not having played it. However if it's anything like Game of Thrones and you can snag it, do so. Or just snag Game of Thrones, because I can tell you that's time well spent.


    *The difference being that GoT's story is harsh, but enjoyable if you like 'em gritty. Spec Ops' is just this side of psychologically damaging. For sheer impact, audacity and ability to follow that up, Spec Ops gets the edge. In terms of things I may at some point replay, GoT takes it.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    The characters are really well written. A bit too much swearing for my personal taste, but I guess its the kind of gritty the creators wanted to go for.

    The bantering between the two protagonists is great! Arkail, the short tempered but rather savvy Ork Berserker, and Styx, a pragmatic streetsmart goblin have great chemistry. Their initial team-up makes perfect sense with the story, and you can see the level of respect that develops between them.

    Styx: Oh ****... You had to let that scum see your tatoo. Don't you think you could have maybe hidden it, huh?
    Arkail: No. I did like you said and that's already enough. You're a guide: you're being paid to get me across. That's it.
    Styx: Yhea but that's no reason to make everything harder than it already is! Now everyone is gonna be all over our asses! The place'll be crawling with them!
    Arkail: Looking after this kind of stuff is your job. You aren't taking a kitten out on a walk, you know.
    Brilliant!

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Man, the story progresses at a nice pace. Characters are still strong as hell, and I just hit the mines... And what a strong character moment between Arkail and Styx..

    Let's just say the reveal left me breathless for a minute.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men



    Styx: I am not sure... You really gonna throw me all the way across?
    Arkail: Do you trust me?
    Styx: Yhea.. off course.. It's just.. It's about 20 yard, right?
    Arkail: I am not sure. You can count while in the air

    *grabs Styx and throw him*

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Damn, your posts are making me wish I had internet to my desktop. It sounds like the same sort of goodness as Game of Thrones, and that was seriously good.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    So was the game originally written in french or english?
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    While I'm sure the game has full potential to be good, I have to say I really don't care for this type of 'reversal' when all they've done is turned the humans into unambiguously evil bastards. Humans in fantasy don't keep orcs as slaves, or wage expansionist and slaughter-tastic wars. They've literally just flipped the sides, which seems to defy the whole point of changing perspectives.

    Grumble.
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Klose_the_Sith View Post
    While I'm sure the game has full potential to be good, I have to say I really don't care for this type of 'reversal' when all they've done is turned the humans into unambiguously evil bastards. Humans in fantasy don't keep orcs as slaves, or wage expansionist and slaughter-tastic wars. They've literally just flipped the sides, which seems to defy the whole point of changing perspectives.

    Grumble.
    Actually... It's not as simple as that.

    There are good humans. And they are persecuted as well. And there are bastard orcs. And there are orcs who want to abandon their culture and behave like humans to be accepted in their civilization..

    And there are the goblins, who are nothing more than vermin.. But Styx is a talking goblin, which nobody has ever saw before..

    I am still waiting to see how Elves and Dwarves come out, but the game is.... ... interesting. Deep, and interesting. Arkail actually go out and claim he feel sorry for the Human Mage, seeing what the Inquisition is doing to them.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    Actually... It's not as simple as that.

    There are good humans. And they are persecuted as well. And there are bastard orcs. And there are orcs who want to abandon their culture and behave like humans to be accepted in their civilization..

    And there are the goblins, who are nothing more than vermin.. But Styx is a talking goblin, which nobody has ever saw before..

    I am still waiting to see how Elves and Dwarves come out, but the game is.... ... interesting. Deep, and interesting. Arkail actually go out and claim he feel sorry for the Human Mage, seeing what the Inquisition is doing to them.
    I think deep and interesting are the last words that I'd use for this bland, copy-pasta setting. Not only are a great deal of the human npc models basically being reused from Game of Thrones, but a few individuals who don't fit the mould is hardly an exception. Having 'good' humans in this is just the same as the occasional 'humanised' monster in any other setting. Having some who assimilate from good to evil is also nothing to get excited about.

    Wake me if any game makers learn how an interesting setting is actually developed.
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Klose_the_Sith View Post
    I think deep and interesting are the last words that I'd use for this bland, copy-pasta setting. Not only are a great deal of the human npc models basically being reused from Game of Thrones, but a few individuals who don't fit the mould is hardly an exception. Having 'good' humans in this is just the same as the occasional 'humanised' monster in any other setting. Having some who assimilate from good to evil is also nothing to get excited about.

    Wake me if any game makers learn how an interesting setting is actually developed.
    What do character models have to do with a setting's complexity? I tend to put a fair bit of emphasis on graphics and have no trouble deciding not to play a game for being ugly, but NPC model budget has sod-all to do with how thoughtful and developed the setting is. How willing I am to play the thing, absolutely.

    (I'm even less fussy when the game's being sold for sub-$50, and is from a smaller developer. For $60 I expect a bit of eye-candy, for $40? My standards are lower.)

    'Cides which, depth of setting at best enjoys only a weak positive correlation to quality of story. I find far more variation in that is explained by character and plot than background detail.

    edit: So the non-Steam version of this can be activated offline. As soon as I rustle up a flash drive big enough to move the sucker from my laptop to my desktop, it looks like Cyanide will have themselves a sale. Something to look forwards to after Friday's horrible exam...
    Last edited by warty goblin; 2012-10-31 at 10:41 PM.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

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    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    What do character models have to do with a setting's complexity? I tend to put a fair bit of emphasis on graphics and have no trouble deciding not to play a game for being ugly, but NPC model budget has sod-all to do with how thoughtful and developed the setting is. How willing I am to play the thing, absolutely.
    I just think it's indicative of how this game was developed, all budget but no sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    'Cides which, depth of setting at best enjoys only a weak positive correlation to quality of story. I find far more variation in that is explained by character and plot than background detail.
    But in that case why bother at all? My criticism is precisely that this 'different' background seems to have had the tiniest hint of appreciable impact on how the game turned out. The chance certainly still exists for it to be a perfectly good product, something I said in my first post - but the arbitrary way in which the setting has been handled is one of the thing that sets me off. At least Stan Nicholls 'Orcs' novels tried to establish the way that clan loyalties and mercenary attitudes tie in with servitude to a big bad. That's the sort of thing that would make me think 'ooh' but all I enter this with now is a lower opinion than if they'd just developed a human RPG.
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Klose_the_Sith View Post
    I think deep and interesting are the last words that I'd use for this bland, copy-pasta setting. Not only are a great deal of the human npc models basically being reused from Game of Thrones, but a few individuals who don't fit the mould is hardly an exception. Having 'good' humans in this is just the same as the occasional 'humanised' monster in any other setting. Having some who assimilate from good to evil is also nothing to get excited about.

    Wake me if any game makers learn how an interesting setting is actually developed.
    I'm not gonna waste any more time. You apparently already made your decision about the setting without even experiencing it or researching it proper. Have a nice life.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Klose_the_Sith View Post
    I just think it's indicative of how this game was developed, all budget but no sense.
    They are reusing models from a previous game. That's cutting costs. That means they had a limited budget.

    How does that make the game 'all budget'?

    It seems to me that you dislike this game, and have decided to bash it. Why? I get it that you don't like the game. I thought your reason for not liking it was the fact that they took Good Humans, Evil Orcs and made it Evil Humans, Good Orcs. That's fine. You don't have to come up with any other reasons to bash the game.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Klose_the_Sith View Post
    I just think it's indicative of how this game was developed, all budget but no sense.
    This makes very close to zero sense. Games companies reuse assets from their previous titles all the time. Art costs a lot to produce, so why produce a new generic peasant model when you already have one on hand?

    But in that case why bother at all? My criticism is precisely that this 'different' background seems to have had the tiniest hint of appreciable impact on how the game turned out. The chance certainly still exists for it to be a perfectly good product, something I said in my first post - but the arbitrary way in which the setting has been handled is one of the thing that sets me off. At least Stan Nicholls 'Orcs' novels tried to establish the way that clan loyalties and mercenary attitudes tie in with servitude to a big bad. That's the sort of thing that would make me think 'ooh' but all I enter this with now is a lower opinion than if they'd just developed a human RPG.
    Because as I said, the quality/interest of the setting for me has only a very weak positive correlation with the quality of the story. That doesn't mean the setting can be removed from the narrative (at least not without a lot of work), just that it, even of itself, doesn't have to have much appeal. I enjoyed the hell out of Elven Legacy's nifty little story of betrayal, which has the most generic setting it's humanly possible to construct. I'm told the Elder Scrolls games have a great setting, it doesn't stop their stories from being dull as mud.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    I'm not gonna waste any more time. You apparently already made your decision about the setting without even experiencing it or researching it proper. Have a nice life.
    I watched trailers, read reviews and looked over a few other tidbits. How deeply was I required to plumb before I reach this hidden depth?

    Quote Originally Posted by endoperez View Post
    It seems to me that you dislike this game, and have decided to bash it. Why? I get it that you don't like the game. I thought your reason for not liking it was the fact that they took Good Humans, Evil Orcs and made it Evil Humans, Good Orcs. That's fine. You don't have to come up with any other reasons to bash the game.
    My point is that the laziness of this backdrop is indicative of rushed work and incomplete ideas. The fact that it happened to be one of my pet peeves certainly meant that I focussed on it, but that doesn't mean I can't discuss it and raise a genuine concern. This thread is not tongue-bath central, it's a place to discuss the game. I said that while it's entirely possible that the game is still a good game and even a good product, I view <thing> as a concern because <reason>. To call that 'bashing' is a little bit off base.

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    This makes very close to zero sense. Games companies reuse assets from their previous titles all the time. Art costs a lot to produce, so why produce a new generic peasant model when you already have one on hand?
    This point is probably true, but it's just the sort of thing that removes confidence from a product. They've previously been working on licensed titles (unless I'm mistaken) so presumably this step out into a theoretically unconventional RPG developed entirely in-house would be something that you'd want to be painstaking with. Or at least, I would. So why were they so blatantly cutting corners on what you'd want to be a flagship release?

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    Because as I said, the quality/interest of the setting for me has only a very weak positive correlation with the quality of the story. That doesn't mean the setting can be removed from the narrative (at least not without a lot of work), just that it, even of itself, doesn't have to have much appeal.
    This here is probably where differing tastes and preferences are colouring the soup. For me the atmosphere of an RPG is more important than the storyline alone, but an incomplete or rushed world tends to derail that more than most plot holes would. The only part of this setting that's married to the narrative is ... none. The closest I can come up with is that they wanted large, brutal and distinctive characters and out of a laundry list of possibilities they chose orcs as much at random as anything else.

    Maybe there's really something going on here that I missed, but I've already gotten a headache from commentary on a youtube preview and read more reviews and features on this then I read on the last game I even purchased. It just seems to be an art and possibly voice acting direction rather than anything more carefully planned out.
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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Quote Originally Posted by Klose_the_Sith View Post
    This point is probably true, but it's just the sort of thing that removes confidence from a product. They've previously been working on licensed titles (unless I'm mistaken) so presumably this step out into a theoretically unconventional RPG developed entirely in-house would be something that you'd want to be painstaking with. Or at least, I would. So why were they so blatantly cutting corners on what you'd want to be a flagship release?
    Again, limited amounts of money. No one sets out to make a bad game, any more than a car company sets out to make a bad car. Motivation and management might make it a chore to work on it, and working on a PSP conversion of a license game might not have the people being very enthusiastic about it, but no company would ever set out to make a bad game.

    I don't know why the developers here made what they made, and I don't know if Of Orcs and Men is a good game or not, but the art budget isn't really the most important thing in a game.

    I mean, if this was a sequel, no one would complain if assets were reused. Why should only companies who already made one successful game - that is, successful enough to get a sequel - be allowed to cut costs?

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    Quote Originally Posted by endoperez View Post
    Again, limited amounts of money. No one sets out to make a bad game, any more than a car company sets out to make a bad car. Motivation and management might make it a chore to work on it, and working on a PSP conversion of a license game might not have the people being very enthusiastic about it, but no company would ever set out to make a bad game.

    I don't know why the developers here made what they made, and I don't know if Of Orcs and Men is a good game or not, but the art budget isn't really the most important thing in a game.

    I mean, if this was a sequel, no one would complain if assets were reused. Why should only companies who already made one successful game - that is, successful enough to get a sequel - be allowed to cut costs?
    Plus, you have to consider that as the production prices for AAA titles go up, independant competition will have to find ways to cut production price more and more.

    If they have the choice between cutting cost on the models or cutting costs on the storyline, I think the choice should be easy to make.

    Plus, Of Orcs and Men's music track is great. It's... unconventional (how often you hear trepid violins when a berserker Orc makes a rousing speach including the S-word and the F-word?)

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    So I got this installed today, and played about forty minutes. It seems solid, and I rather like the combat. If nothing else it's nice to play a melee character who isn't just there to protect the squishy dudes in robes, but who actually wrecks enemies all on his own. Hitting a dude and watching half his health disappear is nice, and since neither of the player characters have all that much health it keeps combat feeling deadly for both, instead of the extended whack-a-mole this sort of thing all to easily becomes.

    Also, although the game overall isn't exactly gorgeous, the lead character models are very well done. Styx the goblin in particular is some sort of Platonic ideal of goblinkind. And there seems to be a minimal amount of loot, so praise be for that.

    Can't say the story's bowled me over yet, but on the other hand I'm forty minutes in, and the lead characters and main goals have already been established, along with likely to be important organizations and side characters. I never thought I'd say this, but this may actually be a briskly plotted and tightly paced RPG.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

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    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    Also, although the game overall isn't exactly gorgeous, the lead character models are very well done. Styx the goblin in particular is some sort of Platonic ideal of goblinkind. And there seems to be a minimal amount of loot, so praise be for that.
    All right. You have no idea how funny that comment is, once you've played the entire game...

    BIG SPOILER. Only check it out after you have reached at least 3/4th of the game, you'll know exactly what I will be speaking about.

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    Styx is the proto-goblin. The father of them all

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    So this game continues to have good pacing. Which is weird as hell for an RPG, generally the genre I think of as the graveyard of timely storytelling.

    I'm doing some sidequests at the Wall area, and even on sidequests the game cuts to the point. You tell somebody you want to do their quest, the game dumps you at the beginning of the sidequest zone, you complete the quest, and the game takes you back to the hub. There's no running from where you get the quest to where you start the quest, then from the end of the quest back to beginning, then back to the first person to turn it in. This makes sidequests fun, action filled and to the point, instead of tedious exercises in running around the same environments sixteen times.

    The action is also surprisingly protagonist driven. In most RPGs you are entirely reactive, and have to muddle through a couple of levels before you even learn that you have to go stop the ancient evil that's arisen and torched your peaceful village. In this the main characters are told their objectives after like ten minutes, they basically go 'yeah, that makes total sense' and you go about doing them. So far there's been no whinging about Destiny or Tragic Pasts, or even Quests for Ancestral Armor. I also just encountered what I suspect will be the primary antagonist, and he becomes so in response to something that the protagonists do, instead of the other way around.

    The visuals are growing on me. It's not going to win Eyecandy of the Year or anything, but there's a consistent aesthetic at work. Pretty much everything shows signs of use and abuse, all of the human equipment is pretty clearly historically inspired (although some of the polearms are a bit goofy) and it generally nails a believable gritty look. Even the orcish equipment has visible straps, padding, and looks like something that a creature built like that could actually move in.

    Writing remains good and solid. The random southern US accents of some of the NPCs is a bit weird, but on the other hand thieves with a Georgia twang aren't something I've seen in an RPG before, and is actually kinda cool.

    Plus, you can't instantly judge somebody based on species! I've so far encountered humans good, bad, in between and outright insane. Crucially there non-vile humans are common enough that they don't come off as the exception to the rule, but a sizable portion of the species. The orcs meanwhile aren't passed off as homogeneous, or morally superior simply by dint of being the victims. I'm honestly not sure yet what is going on with the goblins though.

    It's like the inverse of a Bioware RPG.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

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    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    This game looks more and more interesting. I also imagine there's an explanation at some point as to why Styx is the only goblin to talk and use tools more sophisticated than pointed sticks. Since I intend to play it at some point though, I'm doing my best to avoid spoilers.
    My FFRP characters. Avatar by Kid Kris. Sigatars by Gulaghar, Kid Kris, Zefir and billtodamax, respectively.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tail of the Bellcurve
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    Progressed a bit farther, pacing remains solid. The thing that struck me most about the hour or so I just played is that it simultaneously depicted orcs as having a valid, worthwhile culture while rejecting the whole in touch with the spirits earth worshiping undertone that threatened to spill the whole thing over into noble savage territory.

    Spoiler
    Show
    If you defeat The Last in combat at the end of the Trainer questline, he offers to make you the continuation of his tribe. It's not made clear if there's actually a supernatural component to the exchange, but both Arkail and the Last clearly see the transference of tribal identity and honor as a real and important thing. Arkail rejects the shaman wanting to sacrifice him to lead the spirits of the dead back to Mother Earth as being clearly all-out crazy though, indicating that the orcs don't seem to be in touch with some sort of higher natural truth via being in touch with nature barbarians. Orcish culture is shown as valid without being stuck up on a pedestal in other words.


    And I'm six plus hours in, through the first town, and there hasn't been a single prostitute. Nor have their been exotic dancers, combat thongs, or even plunging necklines. Frankly, I'm astonished. Granted, there's only been two women so far, but they've both been fairly awesome. Fox in particular kicks all sorts of ass, and I thought was the hardest of the challenge fights.So yeah, I'm genuinely impressed at how many typical genre fails this has avoided, all while maintaining narrative momentum, good writing and solid characters.

    It's like the developers took the Bioware RPG and subjected it to a ruthless training regime until the fat and decadence were replaced with power and muscle, the bleary eyed nostalgia with focus and innovation, and the complacent self-congratulation with thought and introspection. It feels fresh to me, like the designers genuinely have their own vision and created this as their evolution and progression of the genre, instead of blithely watering down tired ideas from their high school D&D games twenty years ago. If it keeps this up, it'll come out ahead of the Witcher games in my book.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Morty's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Poland
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Upcoming: Of Orcs and Men

    I got the game yesterday. It's fun, but rough around the edges. The combat model is interesting, but it ends up rather chaotic and cramped - the latter is due to the way camera works. It wouldn't hurt to be able to scroll away. Arkail's rage is an interesting mechanics. Sure, I can just spam Round Attack or other powerful moves, but this way he goes berserk within seconds.
    Of course, my enjoyment of combat is lessened due to a nasty bug - sometimes, the tactics wheel and the greenskins' status bars glitch, and get replaced by ugly rectangles. It's annoying, and I have no idea what to do about it. I posted about it on the game's forum, hopefully they'll answer...
    Graphics in general are a mixed bag. I like the style, but while the two main characters are well-designed, the NPCs look crude and rather... identical. Humans especially.
    Still, I'm having fun with it. Arkail and Styx's interactions - Arkail's straightforwardness and Styx's constant exasperation it causes - are fun to watch. I'm really curious about Styx. He keeps saying he's not like the other goblins, because he's a "survivor". I wonder what he's hiding. The loading screens say that goblins appeared a century ago, out of nowhere. I bet he was there, the way he claims to be really old.
    My FFRP characters. Avatar by Kid Kris. Sigatars by Gulaghar, Kid Kris, Zefir and billtodamax, respectively.

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