The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #61
    Firbolg in the Playground
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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

    Quote Originally Posted by ArlEammon View Post
    If given the choice between buying Fallout 76, or getting kicked in the balls 76 times, which horror should I choose?
    Fallout 76 really is not that horrifying. If you ignore the malformed multiplayer elements, there's a good 40-50 hours of solid Fallout 4 style gameplay with some admittedly quirky issues to go through just doing the main quest and some of the major sidequests. That much, if you like the lore of the Fallout series, can be quite engrossing if rather dark. Is it worth the full price, no, not considering how frustrating the experience can be at times, but if you can get your hands on its for 50% off, it's fine.

    Edit: with the caveat that you're getting it on PC and have a system that can handle it, but that's been true since at least Skyrim for all Bethesda games anyway.
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  3. - Top - End - #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brookshw View Post
    Personally I'm completely unconcerned with the engine. Maybe its just me, but I'm not as impressed or concerned with cutting edge graphics etc, compared to good story and game play which I'm getting.
    I think this is the first time I've seen anyone refer to Fallout 76 as anything resembling good story or good gameplay.

    Quote Originally Posted by Caelestion View Post
    Clearly, this discussion shows that there is.
    Ok sure, but there's always going to be those people among the fans. We could be talking about Fallout 1 and there would be someone in this thread exclaiming "I don't see any reason to update the engine! It's fine!"

  4. - Top - End - #64
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    In some ways, yes though. Fallout 1 was in part a product of it's engine. Conversations with moving faces and talking heads were something that set it apart from things like Baldur's Gate, where you always talked to the air, whether random dude, or super important Duke.

    Which at the same time doesn't mean it couldn't use some polish,, as Fallout 2 proved

  5. - Top - End - #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anteros View Post
    I think this is the first time I've seen anyone refer to Fallout 76 as anything resembling good story or good gameplay.
    I'd actually say the story is pretty good, if rather soul-crushing. It's better than Fallout 4's central story at least, which was messy and rambling and lacked impact because it wanted you to be able to play all sides as long as possible. The real issue is that, in Fallout 76, your character is a witness to the story, rather than a participant in it. The story is also harder to access, since to get to it you have to actively choose to read terminal entries and listen to holotapes that aren't required quest flags.
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  6. - Top - End - #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    There's a lot of talk in this thread which seems as though people think that an engine is like a part you can replace, like a new box-spring for your bed. It's really not like that. It's the underlying technological design foundation of your entire game. That's why "new" engines rarely are new. They're just modified over time, like any other piece of software. To illustrate by way of analogy, going from Windows XP to Windows 7 is a modification of the underlying design. Going from Mac OS9 to Mac OSX was a complete change of the fundamental design. When we talk about the change of the Bethesda 3D engine, we should be talking about a complete refactor of the underlying code supporting the game, otherwise the discussion is kind of meaningless.
    I think most people understand that it is a major project to change engines. Much like changing the engine in a car means you could very well have to replace everything related to the drive-train. And to use the analogy even further, we're not saying you can't love the seats, the layout of the dash, the infotainment system, and the low wind noise of the car, but that is also not directly related to the engine, you can replace the engine and keep all the other things you like about the car too.

    Sure it is a lot of work, but it is probably easier to start fresh from the ground up compared to trying to replace the 90hp engine in your car to some modern 160hp engine, even if the engines are mostly the same size and used in similar sized cars.

    Nothing that makes Fallout good is intrinsic to the engine, but the engine is clearly holding back the games from being better. It may not all be engine, some could be poor programming. And while some mods can fix some of the problems that doesn't mean they aren't problems with the engine, just that the modders seem to be better at working around those problems than Bethesda seems to be. Just because you can patch the engine to crash less doesn't mean the engine is not a problem.

    It will be a lot of work to transition their art and animation tools to a new engine, there is no doubt about that. But it seems to be necessary.


    Quote Originally Posted by Anteros View Post
    Ok sure, but there's always going to be those people among the fans. We could be talking about Fallout 1 and there would be someone in this thread exclaiming "I don't see any reason to update the engine! It's fine!"
    For what it is worth, I think Wastelands 2 is a much better Fallout 3 than the real Fallout 3 ever was. Granted it isn't the same engine, but it is more similar than the direction Fallout has went in since. That is of course more of a design philosophy than directly engine related. Not that I didn't enjoy Fallout: New Vegas (never really got into FO3) but so very many things changed, not just in real world technology improvements, but in pretty much every way possible. Other than Fallout Boy, Pip-boy, the vault entrance, and a couple enemies, nothing really felt like Fallout. It was just a completely different RPG with some similar elements. The reasons I like Fallout 1&2 and the reasons I like F:NV are pretty much completely unrelated.

  7. - Top - End - #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    First of all, ascribing motivations to technology decisions is opinion and conjecture, and not fact, unless you're the party making the actual decision. But in any case, the phenomenon you refer to of "new" engines is just marketing-speak. "New" engines aren't new, they're just a different version number, with some added features. But not all 3D engines are created equally, and some have fallen by the wayside, while others have continued to scale well with new technologies. Others still are the benchmarks against which other 3D engines are compared.
    True enough, but in large part Bethesda has failed to even create new version numbers of their system. It's like Valve and their die hard loyalty to the Source engine.


    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    I don't know that you actually know this. To be fair, I don't know this either. Without access to the source code, and expert knowledge and research, we don't know whether some of the more offensive bugs in Creation can be fixed without abandoning the entire underlying foundation of the CAD program it's based on. What I do know, and you do too, is that there are other 3D engines on the market which don't suffer such problems as crazy physics glitches when you uncap frame-rate. But we don't know what other trade-offs one needs to make in terms of how Bethesda games are created, in order to adopt such an engine. Would Blizzard's unnamed proprietary engine they use for Overwatch cleanly handle a room full of hundreds of interactive objects, in the way that Creation can? Would IdTech 6? Unreal? Lithtech?
    Hard to tell, but Bethesda is hardly the only company to make open world games. And a more versatile engine probably wouldn't have a lot of the limitations of a lot of Creation Engine games for consoles. Any of the above might be optimized enough to allow fora removal of the instanced cities and whatnot.


    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    If you can fix it with a mod, it is by definition not an engine problem, just an bad implementation. Problems with the engine can only be fixed by replacing the engine.
    Sort of? Having a wonky engine means you need to use a lot of weird workarounds for stuff or take extra time to implement things. That it can be fixed means it isn't an inherent limitation, but it's indicative of the environment of having to work around Creation's quirks. Little things like that easily fall under the radar when you have to bend over backward to make the core features work.



    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    I assume that what modders don't often get access to is motion capture tools that the pros use, but in any case, animations are also not tightly coupled with the 3d Engine, unless you're using some kind of ragdoll system which interacts with the world via physics, which I doubt Fallout's combat animations do. Rather, I suspect the lunge attacks on dogs is more of an aesthetic decision to account for the unpredictable angles against which a dog might attack a target. After all, they need that bite animation to work against a regular sized person and a twenty foot tall supermutant behemoth. Now you either have a choice of making a unique animation for every creature combat matchup possible, or you just make one kind of generic looking one that is reasonably convincing against all enemies. Guess which one they settle on?
    Unless I was misled, it wasn't an issue with CREATING animations, it was with implementing them. For a long time in Skyrim's lifespan, new animations were impossible to put into the game because the tools available did not allow new animations to be created; only old ones to be replaced. Plugins later made it far easier to hook new animations into the game, so we have mods that add new animations all the time now.

    Admittedly, this may have been more an issue with the Creation Kit.

  8. - Top - End - #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rynjin View Post
    True enough, but in large part Bethesda has failed to even create new version numbers of their system. It's like Valve and their die hard loyalty to the Source engine.
    To be fair, Source has been updated to Source 2 in 2015. Also a lot of other companies use the Source engine too, and while I haven't played many of them, the ones I have played have all been very solid. There doesn't seem to be much indication that staying with Source is hampering their game design or crashing with any regularity.

    I think it is also worth noting that while many games were released for the previous version of the Creation engine, which was Gamebryo, very few games have been released for Creation. Many of the other Gamebryo games seem to have moved to Unreal (or not had sequels). It seems like Bethesda is the *only* company that stuck with the engine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Erloas View Post
    To be fair, Source has been updated to Source 2 in 2015. Also a lot of other companies use the Source engine too, and while I haven't played many of them, the ones I have played have all been very solid. There doesn't seem to be much indication that staying with Source is hampering their game design or crashing with any regularity.

    I think it is also worth noting that while many games were released for the previous version of the Creation engine, which was Gamebryo, very few games have been released for Creation. Many of the other Gamebryo games seem to have moved to Unreal (or not had sequels). It seems like Bethesda is the *only* company that stuck with the engine.
    Also, Source is downstream of Quake, so it has common roots with IdTech. Gamebryo, IIRC, is basically has its origins rooted in CAD software, not a dedicated game platform, so I'm not sure how much that informs the downstream product. But my core caution to everyone talking about game engines is this: Don't fetishize the engine. What we care as consumers of games is that they perform well and they're bug free. And we really ought not care so much how those goals are achieved. If Creation Engine can be modified to play smoothly and eliminate more of its stubborn bugs, great. The only implicit argument I have in favor dropping off or the Gamebryo downstream chain is that IdTech is very solid, and arguably available to Bethsoft at no cost, save the costs of adoption (which are not inconsiderable). It alleges to support real-time dynamic lighting, among other features, so the pesky problem of being unable to move lit lanterns, for example, in Bethsoft games is solved. It also supports dynamic texture streaming, which, while not free of graphical issues, does permit building larger, seamless worlds, in theory. Here's a video which demonstrates the effects of texture loading:



    Notice how the textures change to more high-resolution as you examine them more. Now you might argue that that's a unpleasant visual glitch, but I'd argue it's preferable to frequent loading screens and map boundaries.

  10. - Top - End - #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    But my core caution to everyone talking about game engines is this: Don't fetishize the engine. What we care as consumers of games is that they perform well and they're bug free. And we really ought not care so much how those goals are achieved. If Creation Engine can be modified to play smoothly and eliminate more of its stubborn bugs, great.
    That is how we got here. Everyone said "this game has all of the same issues as their previous games, you would think they would have figured out how to fix them by now." Which lead to the belief that most of them are mostly inherent in the engine. No one wants a new engine to have a new engine, we want games that run better and crash less, the engine just seems to be the common element. Their justification for not fixing the problems just seems to be that it would slow down their ability to release new games with the least effort required, not for any good reason from the consumer side.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Erloas View Post
    That is how we got here. Everyone said "this game has all of the same issues as their previous games, you would think they would have figured out how to fix them by now." Which lead to the belief that most of them are mostly inherent in the engine. No one wants a new engine to have a new engine, we want games that run better and crash less, the engine just seems to be the common element. Their justification for not fixing the problems just seems to be that it would slow down their ability to release new games with the least effort required, not for any good reason from the consumer side.
    Well, I think the Fallout 76 debacle has poured some kerosene on that specious logic (that content compensates for bugs), and we in the commentariat have been more than happy to start flinging lit matches at it. The only thing that has kept Bethesda in any small measure from criticism has been that nobody else has been encroaching on their niche, but I don't expect that state of affairs to last forever. At least, I hope some other ambitious company will try to make a big, ambitious sandbox game where I get to create my own character, instead of playing as Commander Boring or Wanklord of Rivia.

  12. - Top - End - #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    Well, I think the Fallout 76 debacle has poured some kerosene on that specious logic (that content compensates for bugs), and we in the commentariat have been more than happy to start flinging lit matches at it. The only thing that has kept Bethesda in any small measure from criticism has been that nobody else has been encroaching on their niche, but I don't expect that state of affairs to last forever. At least, I hope some other ambitious company will try to make a big, ambitious sandbox game where I get to create my own character, instead of playing as Commander Boring or Wanklord of Rivia.
    Obsidian seems to be doing just that. Of course, their games are often buggy and unfinished as well...but the quality is generally higher.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anteros View Post
    Obsidian seems to be doing just that. Of course, their games are often buggy and unfinished as well...but the quality is generally higher.
    Honestly, I'm mostly done with the AAAs as far as good RPGs go. I've no interest in Anthem and the state of Andromeda and the limited info so far on DA4 has me pretty much given up on Bioware. The 76 debacle (and the fact that I felt New Vegas was much better than either 3 or 4) has me very concerned about Bethesda. I've heard that RDR2 is pretty good (crazy prices in the MP not-withstanding) but console exclusive means I'll never play it.

    On the other hand, in smaller studios Obsidian has Outer Worlds coming and I liked Pillars I and Tyranny (have, but haven't played Pillars 2 yet), inXile had Wasteland 2 and has Wasteland 3 in the works as well as Torment (which I never got to), Larian had D:OS and D:OS2, Owlcat's Kingmaker is abysmally buggy but is still quite fun (and insanely ambitious for a first title from a new developer even if it is cribbing off an existing adventure path). Granted, none of those (except maybe Outer Worlds) are quite as sandboxy as the 3d fallout or TES games, but for an RPG I'm more than happy to take those, especially with something along the lines of the maps in Wasteland 2 or Kingmaker (or previously NWN2: Storm of Zehir). Yes, it's sometimes it is nice to wander around freely but all too often these days I just don't have time to spend a half hour trying to trek through the Forest of Impossibly Strong Bears and ascend Mount SuperSteep in order to get to the ruins of Fort QuestObjective. It's much more time efficient to just go there on the overland map, have it roll up some encounters with the Impossibly Strong Bears if needed on the way and then explore Fort QuestObjective in detail.

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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

    I wouldn't give up hope on RDR2 PC, though I also hear a lot of complaints that RDR2 is beautiful but full of boring drudgery. But I would also argue that RDR2, like Fallout, Skyrim, and the like aren't RPGs. Anthem certainly isn't. They're sandboxes games. Do they have some RPG elements? Sure. But lots of games have progression in them, without being RPGs. FPS games, MOBAs, they're all putting in progression, so as to give players a sense of investment.

    In fact, I'd go so far as to argue that computer RPG is an oxymoron. It has a great deal more in common with a choose your own adventure book than a regular tabletop RPG. There's no real roleplaying or improvisation, just a narrative, some level and item progression, and a dialogue tree. That's not a diss, if that's what you like, more power to you, but I really think the measure of a game is "Is this fun", over any rank categorization. Personally, I find most game narratives tiresome and distracting. It's the rare game that aspires to supply a deep and detailed narrative that holds my interest. Then again, I also don't like to watch your average TV drama, so maybe I'm not normal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    I wouldn't give up hope on RDR2 PC
    Yeah, they said that with the first game, which totally ended up coming out on PC just like they said it would.

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    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    Yeah, they said that with the first game, which totally ended up coming out on PC just like they said it would.
    Well, GTA 5 made it to PC, so unless their port process is absurdly convoluted and costly, I can't imagine they'd pass up the opportunity for more revenue.

    https://store.steampowered.com/agecheck/app/271590/

    <shrug>

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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Jackal View Post
    Well, GTA 5 made it to PC
    As did every other GTA game from 3 onwards. RDR did *not* make it to PC, though, and since that's a rather closer match to RDR2 than GTA is, I think it makes more sense to use it as the example.

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    So I got a new laptop and decided to break it in with a playthrough of fallout 4. At the glowing sea, I went ahead and went off to start Far Harbor, to get that robe that makes you immune to radiation.... But I also picked up the recipes for sludge.

    Durable Sludgepak + 100% Radiation = Boss.

    Guy in tattered robes, sunglasses, and a hat just marching through molotovs, laser fire, and bullets with a gun in one hand and a haunch of deathclaw in the other is hilarious. Plus if the dialogue is right, at higher levels of rads you're supposed to Visibly Glow.
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    Quote Originally Posted by AvatarZero View Post
    I like the "hobo" in there.
    "Hey, you just got 10000gp! You going to buy a fully staffed mansion or something?"
    "Nah, I'll upgrade my +2 sword to a +3 sword and sleep in my cloak."

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    So, has anyone played the New California mod for New Vegas?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Hall View Post
    So, has anyone played the New California mod for New Vegas?
    I have! What's more, Many a True Nerd is doing an excellent playthrough of it on his channel.

    The Vault area, having received the most love from the mod makers, is excellent. Once you leave the vault, though, it feels a bit empty. Think stuff like shelled-out towns with no people and no loot, and map markers for the smallest things like road signs. I have been impressed by the different ways your game can play out, though, based on who you have in your party.
    I run a Let's Play channel! Check it out!
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    Finished Honest Hearts a second time. It's an interesting take on the good/bad ending concept.

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    Either you kill the White Legs and turn the Sorrows more violent, or flee and leave the relative paradise of the park to be utterly ruined by the White Legs.

    Either way, Daniel is haunted by the results. Maybe that's the lesson, that sometimes things are just going to get screwed up and all you can do is choose how.
    Awesome OOTS-style Fallout New Vegas avatar by Ceika.

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    Seen the rumours that Fallout 76 is going free to play? Not sure I care enough about it to play it even for free, anyone else?

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    It's been officially denied. Given that most of the rumors about the game lately have been started and spread by people that make "yellow journalism" seem like honest reporting in comparison, I'm inclined to just automatically dismiss anything that doesn't come straight from Bethesda or the actual game files. Hate-bait clicks are fast, furious, and profitable for people who care about being first rather than being right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    Seen the rumours that Fallout 76 is going free to play? Not sure I care enough about it to play it even for free, anyone else?
    Wait, Fallout 76 has a subscription??

    I can't even express how ludicrious this seems to me

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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

    No, just a start cost.
    I am trying out LPing. Check out my channel here: Triaxx2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triaxx View Post
    No, just a start cost.
    And an emotional one from suffering through the game itself
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haruspex_Pariah View Post
    Finished Honest Hearts a second time. It's an interesting take on the good/bad ending concept.

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    Either you kill the White Legs and turn the Sorrows more violent, or flee and leave the relative paradise of the park to be utterly ruined by the White Legs.

    Either way, Daniel is haunted by the results. Maybe that's the lesson, that sometimes things are just going to get screwed up and all you can do is choose how.
    Honest Hearts is an excellent vacation away from the Deathclaws and Super Mutants of the Mojave, with a lovely and lush and vibrant background which is breathtaking to behold, in sharp contrast from the muted colors of the occasionally irradiated Mojave. I mean, sure, you have to listen to Follows-Chalk for part of the time, who sounds like a cross between a stereotype indian from the old wild westerns and a Canadian (eh?), but that almost falls more into 'so bad its charming' like early Dr. Who.

    Oh, and you get to kill some Legion by proxy, so there's that too. I mean, they're Legion wannabees, but that still counts. And they drop some phat loots, which you can pick up in pretty substantial quantity because the DLC reminds you to empty your pockets before entering so you have the space to carry off the Riot Shotguns, AMR's, and .45 SMG's worth 10k+ caps each to sell once you get back to the Mojave.

    ALSD is one of the best handguns, period. If you use the mod WMX so that it can accept the mods that regular .45 ACP's can use, it can also be silenced, making it indisputably the best handgun you can use, since it is also affected by the Grunt perk. Obtained by clearing the DLC. Graham's armor isn't too shabby either, although Ulysses' Duster is better. That 5% crit modifier, tho...

    I think Daniel was supposed to be the 'innocent hanging onto the last vestiges of Old World morality' character, who is pretty much offended and/or depressed no matter what ending you have. In short, he was born for a softer world, not the one in which he lives.

    Graham, depending on the ending, can either be a Jerk with a heart of Jerk, or can actually have a redemption play going on. He's done some really bad stuff in his past. He can either learn to let go (another common theme in the game) or he can cling to his hate until it consumes him.

    Definitely one of the more peaceful and memorable locations you visit in your journey to find the guy who shot you in the head and return the favor.
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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

    Quote Originally Posted by ShneekeyTheLost View Post
    I mean, sure, you have to listen to Follows-Chalk for part of the time, who sounds like a cross between a stereotype indian from the old wild westerns and a Canadian (eh?), but that almost falls more into 'so bad its charming' like early Dr. Who.
    Isn't the whole point that the various "tribes" in Honest Hearts are essentially the native Indian equivalent of the Elvis Presley guys on the strip? They're cosplaying as Indians and not doing a perfect job of it.

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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    Isn't the whole point that the various "tribes" in Honest Hearts are essentially the native Indian equivalent of the Elvis Presley guys on the strip? They're cosplaying as Indians and not doing a perfect job of it.
    It's an interesting situation. Every "tribe" we've seen in the Fallout series is a group assembled after the nukes fell. In the case of Arroyo, we can see how a population only two generations removed from Vault residents have gone full tribal.

    I'm inclined to believe that they aren't cosplaying as such, but that they developed their own practices and customs as time passed. By the time of Honest Hearts, 200 years has passed from the time of the Great War. The children of the initial survivors have no idea what the pre-war world was like, except from stories of their parents generation and what remains they can see.

    What do you pass down to your children in such a situation? Primarily how to survive, I gather. Even if you remember the way of life before the bombs, that's not the world you're living in now. You take care of yourself, and your family if you have one. Families band together into tribes.

    After a hundred years, likely less, no living human remembers the time before the war. After two hundred? The world before the war is basically a myth.
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    Default Re: Fallout IX: Nuclear Cash Cows Go MMOoooooo!

    Quote Originally Posted by Haruspex_Pariah View Post
    After a hundred years, likely less, no living human remembers the time before the war. After two hundred? The world before the war is basically a myth.
    Human, sure. But there are also ghouls, robots, and records... leading to things like the Kings, where they fixate on an old world oddity.
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