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Obsidian Aims to Fix Dungeon Siege III's PC Controls

Lead designer tells Eurogamer that the studio is claiming a mulligan on the original PC scheme, and plans to update the game soon.

Much as the blooming of the crocuses signals the arrival of Spring, so too does the blooming of complaint-filled forum threads seem to signal the arrival of a new Obsidian-developed game.

All this man wanted was proper mouse-and-keyboard controls in Dungeon Siege III. Now, just look what he's been reduced to: A stock photograph of a man angry at a computer.

In this case, the complaints pertain to Dungeon Siege III, Obsidian's take on the classic dungeon crawling RPG series that saw release earlier this week. While the general response to the game has been mostly decent, many PC players reported dissatisfaction with the PC version's mouse-and-keyboard control scheme, which eschews many of the dungeon crawling genre standards to the point where some purists deemed the situation untenable, and just picked up a gamepad (which, by all accounts, works far better).

Lead designer Nathan Chapman is apparently well aware of players' issues with the control scheme, and in talking to Eurogamer this morning, explained that Obsidian plans to update the control scheme in the near future to something more traditional.

Actually this is one thing I would have liked to have spent more time on, and we are actually spending time on now. Basically, I think as long as PC gamers have a good way to control the combat they will enjoy it. One review - I can't remember which - said if you play with a game pad the combat is great, so right now we're working on improving the PC controls through an update.

Though there's no immediate timetable for this update's release, it sounds like Obsidian is already hard at work on it. What say you, Giant Bomb PC community? Are you looking forward to a new mouse-and-keyboard scheme? Or were you okay with what was originally offered?

Alex Navarro on Google+
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Posted by Alex

Much as the blooming of the crocuses signals the arrival of Spring, so too does the blooming of complaint-filled forum threads seem to signal the arrival of a new Obsidian-developed game.

All this man wanted was proper mouse-and-keyboard controls in Dungeon Siege III. Now, just look what he's been reduced to: A stock photograph of a man angry at a computer.

In this case, the complaints pertain to Dungeon Siege III, Obsidian's take on the classic dungeon crawling RPG series that saw release earlier this week. While the general response to the game has been mostly decent, many PC players reported dissatisfaction with the PC version's mouse-and-keyboard control scheme, which eschews many of the dungeon crawling genre standards to the point where some purists deemed the situation untenable, and just picked up a gamepad (which, by all accounts, works far better).

Lead designer Nathan Chapman is apparently well aware of players' issues with the control scheme, and in talking to Eurogamer this morning, explained that Obsidian plans to update the control scheme in the near future to something more traditional.

Actually this is one thing I would have liked to have spent more time on, and we are actually spending time on now. Basically, I think as long as PC gamers have a good way to control the combat they will enjoy it. One review - I can't remember which - said if you play with a game pad the combat is great, so right now we're working on improving the PC controls through an update.

Though there's no immediate timetable for this update's release, it sounds like Obsidian is already hard at work on it. What say you, Giant Bomb PC community? Are you looking forward to a new mouse-and-keyboard scheme? Or were you okay with what was originally offered?

Edited by Morningstar

Should have done this before release. But atleast the controls will be better when I pick it up fromthe bargain bin later.

Posted by HadesTimes

Not to sound like a jerk here, but considering the focus of this game was on coop and they knew it was going to be a big PC game. Perhaps some extra effort should have been made in those two departments. Even if it would have taken another month or two. Cause June was kind of packed to begin with.

Posted by Rayeth

@Morningstar said:

Should have done this before release. But atleast the controls will be better when I pick it up fromthe bargain bin later.

Bingo. This was already a likely steam sale purchase for me, so I should be well set by the time that rolls around.

Posted by MisterMouse

I feel like this is something they should have had in the game from the get go...

Posted by Video_Game_King

How do you fuck up PC controls? Just map shit to the mouse and WASD and call it a day.

Posted by Shuborno

We should know better than to expect anything but the bare minimum from Obsidian.

Posted by Abendlaender

Well that sounds awfully nice.
But how about fixing the controlls before you ship the game Obsidian?

Posted by walterbennet

Based on the demo that I played, "fixed" controls aren't going to sway my wallet. I think Jeff said it best in the Bombcast this week, it plays like "a bad third-person action game," not a traditional action-RPG with an expansive world. But maybe the game opens up later on.

If it's on sale, I might try it.

Posted by jaks

Game is shit anyway.

Posted by crusader8463

It makes me sad that we live in a world where a game that lets you configure the keybinds is a bullet point feature on the back of a box, and needs to have entire news articles written about it when they patch it into a game weeks/months after the game releases. That's just such a common sense thing to include in games, that it would be like reading on the back of the box that you can adjust the gamma and sound levels.

Posted by Dustpan

The patch inverted the controls for me, making the game frustrating to play now.

Posted by Morningstar

At least this one isnt buggy. A first for obsidian :P

Posted by christ0phe

I don't think it's been getting mostly decent reviews.  I would say mostly mediocre at best reviews

Posted by phrosnite

Consoles ruined another PC franchise... thanks... I'm not even going to bother playing DS3. I'm going to replay Dungeon Siege 2 instead.

Posted by Krakn3Dfx

Don't worry about it Obsidian. No, seriously, you don't have to get up, I'll just play through Titan Quest again.

Maybe next time, just play the FIRST DUNGEON SIEGE BEFORE YOU TRY AND MAKE ONE YOURSELF.

Edited by Morningstar

@phrosnite said:

Consoles ruined another PC franchise... thanks... I'm not even going to bother playing DS3. I'm going to replay Dungeon Siege 2 instead.

Yeah, I just purchased Titan Quest from Steam.

10 bucks for a game far superior to DS3, the graphics holds up really well too.

Posted by HydraHam

@phrosnite said:

Consoles ruined another PC franchise... thanks... I'm not even going to bother playing DS3. I'm going to replay Dungeon Siege 2 instead.

How did the console ruin it? blame the devs not consoles, plenty of great PC versions of console games.

I am sick and tired of pc elitist asshats trying to blame consoles and console gamers, isn't our fault developers are lazy.

Posted by Krakn3Dfx

@Styl3s said:

@phrosnite said:

Consoles ruined another PC franchise... thanks... I'm not even going to bother playing DS3. I'm going to replay Dungeon Siege 2 instead.

How did the console ruin it? blame the devs not consoles, plenty of great PC versions of console games.

I am sick and tired of pc elitist asshats trying to blame consoles and console gamers, isn't our fault developers are lazy.

Pfft, console elitist.

You also ruined Starcade yo.

Posted by HydraHam

@Krakn3Dfx said:

@Styl3s said:

@phrosnite said:

Consoles ruined another PC franchise... thanks... I'm not even going to bother playing DS3. I'm going to replay Dungeon Siege 2 instead.

How did the console ruin it? blame the devs not consoles, plenty of great PC versions of console games.

I am sick and tired of pc elitist asshats trying to blame consoles and console gamers, isn't our fault developers are lazy.

Pfft, console elitist.

You also ruined Starcade yo.

I play everything, i don't come bitch about how X ruined X because i am far to busy enjoying games.

Fuck all fanboys/elitist, they are ruining the gaming community.

Posted by Krakn3Dfx

@Styl3s said:

@Krakn3Dfx said:

@Styl3s said:

@phrosnite said:

Consoles ruined another PC franchise... thanks... I'm not even going to bother playing DS3. I'm going to replay Dungeon Siege 2 instead.

How did the console ruin it? blame the devs not consoles, plenty of great PC versions of console games.

I am sick and tired of pc elitist asshats trying to blame consoles and console gamers, isn't our fault developers are lazy.

Pfft, console elitist.

You also ruined Starcade yo.

I play everything, i don't come bitch about how X ruined X because i am far to busy enjoying games.

Fuck all fanboys/elitist, they are ruining the gaming community.

I was joking, hence my Starcade comment.

It's definitely a development issue when these things happen, I'm a firm believer the more platforms a game comes to the better, and I want all of those platforms to either be great or suck equally.

Posted by FateOfNever

All I know is this practice of "Ship the game broken or subpar, we can fix it later" really has to stop.  Just because you CAN fix a game after launch doesn't mean you should rely on it.  Whether it's the publishers or the developers that have to learn that lesson.

Edited by lucianotassis

Just hire some damn testers, Obsidian, please!

Being able to control the combat usually makes gamers happy, too! :)

Posted by buckybit

@Krakn3Dfx said:

Don't worry about it Obsidian. No, seriously, you don't have to get up, I'll just play through Titan Quest again.

Maybe next time, just play the FIRST DUNGEON SIEGE BEFORE YOU TRY AND MAKE ONE YOURSELF.

!!!

exactly!

How can you fuck up so badly, making the first Dungeon Siege from 9 years ago (!) look and play better than the 3rd one??

Obsidian Entertainment had all the credit because of the Black Isle vets there, but clearly nobody in this company knows how to program a modern 3D game?!

The Nameless One

They should have stayed in their realm and made some more 2D Bioware/Black Isle style titles (iPad, iPhone, Android could use some ports)?

"Why does nobody listen to me?"

/rant

Posted by ApolloBob

Had a controller plugged in to the PC when I first played it - when I saw the Xbox controller button prompts on screen, I just figured I'd play with a controller (tried mouse and keyboard for a few minutes though).  I guess if I didn't already have that option, I'd be angry?  Maybe?  Probably not.

Posted by Beforet

Obsidian, because why release a good game when you can charge full price for a broken one and patch it later?

Posted by SomeJerk

What changed between DS1 and DS3 in controls? Only played the first and it was just fine? What happened here? (Too lazy to get the demo, ISP having issues)

@HadesTimes said:

Not to sound like a jerk here

Hi! :D

Posted by billyblaze

Obsidian Aims to Fix

You're a riot, Navarro!

Posted by zombie007

With the stupid Co-op design choices this game was destined to fail anyway. I didn't like the demo at all, so I'll wait for bargain bin price if at all.

Posted by Absolute_Zero

Love the caption. :P

Posted by Heli0s
@Morningstar said:

Should have done this before release. But atleast the controls will be better when I pick it up fromthe bargain bin later.

My thoughts exactly. I will most likely pick this up when the wait for Diablo 3 becomes too much to handle. I'm sure there will be a nice discount on Steam as well as the updated controls by then.
Posted by bellmont42

So let me get this straight.... we have a console version of a console version of a pc franchise?

Posted by Morningstar

@Heli0s said:

@Morningstar said:

Should have done this before release. But atleast the controls will be better when I pick it up fromthe bargain bin later.

My thoughts exactly. I will most likely pick this up when the wait for Diablo 3 becomes too much to handle. I'm sure there will be a nice discount on Steam as well as the updated controls by then.

Yup, for 20-25 bucks it will be a decent game. Shame they wont add a New Game+ feature though, it would have given it added value(and its kinda the industry standard with these games)

Posted by l3illyl3ob
@somejerk said:

What changed between DS1 and DS3 in controls? Only played the first and it was just fine? What happened here? (Too lazy to get the demo, ISP having issues)

Well, it's almost an entirely different game genre now, so the controls are different.  It's not a standard diablo-like, it's more like a Baulder's Gate Dark Alliance style of game where you're given direct control. Point and click movement is no longer present, and WASD directly controls the character.  You don't click a guy to attack, you attack where you are when you click.  The worst part is that the controls aren't rebindable and that A and D are turn left and turn right, respectively.  There are no move left or move right commands like you can do on the console, it's forced tank controls if you're using WASD, which in this type of game is very, very bad.  You can move with the mouse, your character basically moves in the direction of your cursor, but that's suboptimal at best.
 
I honestly don't know how much work it could possibly take to replace the A and D functions to move in those directions instead of turn.
Posted by Giraffeking

It's not like obsidian to ship broken products, so hopefully this game will be fully playable in a week.
 
 
...Oh wait

Posted by DonPixel

Cool! after it they will have to fix everything else to have me buy it.

Posted by shiftplusone
@l3illyl3ob
@somejerk said:

What changed between DS1 and DS3 in controls? Only played the first and it was just fine? What happened here? (Too lazy to get the demo, ISP having issues)

Well, it's almost an entirely different game genre now, so the controls are different.  It's not a standard diablo-like, it's more like a Baulder's Gate Dark Alliance style of game where you're given direct control. Point and click movement is no longer present, and WASD directly controls the character.  You don't click a guy to attack, you attack where you are when you click.  The worst part is that the controls aren't rebindable and that A and D are turn left and turn right, respectively.  There are no move left or move right commands like you can do on the console, it's forced tank controls if you're using WASD, which in this type of game is very, very bad.  You can move with the mouse, your character basically moves in the direction of your cursor, but that's suboptimal at best.
 
I honestly don't know how much work it could possibly take to replace the A and D functions to move in those directions instead of turn.
Plus with the way the loot system works, you aren't allowed to hold alt and see what all dropped and click what you want. You have to stand over the items and push e to pick anything up. It's really frustrating
Posted by Uebelkraehe

I did like the demo, but the control scheme seemed to be unecessarily awkward. Fix it and i might consider a buy...

Posted by StingingVelvet

The only real blasphemy is the lack of customizing. I honestly can't even remember the last time a PC game shipped without the ability to rebind keys it's so rare, and now it's been done by a relatively PC friendly developer on a PC game series? Ridiculous.

Unless they change it completely to a Diablo style "click on stuff" game, which I doubt they will, it will probably still play better with a pad anyway. So a pad is how I am playing it.

Posted by SlashDance

A new control scheme for the PC would be nice, but that's not gonna be enough to make the game less boring.

Posted by Jimbo

"We couldn't be bothered to put any effort into the PC version before release, but now that the console version has flopped, I guess maybe we should try and rescue our PC sales..."

Fuck off. Maybe giving PC gamers "a good way to control the combat" is something that ought to be considered before release.

Posted by ericdrum

@buckybit: DS1 looks better? You sir, are blind.

Posted by MordeaniisChaos

How does it control? I would like it to control basically like Alien Swarm, with a crosshair, but being essentially dual joystick. Is that not what they did?

Posted by KillyDarko

By the time this gets out, I will have already finished and sold this broken game. How about spending time with these things PRIOR to release, uh Obsidian? Or maybe, I don't know... this is probably a crazy idea, but how about hiring some testers next time?

Edited by Canteu

I play my xbox games that i buy on PC due to steam sales with an xbox controller as intended, and i will continue to do so after this update. If a game gives me the option to use my xbox controller on pc, i will take that, as it's always more fun/comfortable than mouse and keyboard (FPS/RTS notwithstanding).

Posted by PrinceLeon

They shouldn't have had to fix the PC controls to begin with if they were customizable from the start.

Posted by tourgen

so tired of the release-and-patch laziness

Posted by HarrySound

Jesus Obsidion are bad.....

Posted by Evilsbane

Too little too late

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