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#1 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -

Sure its good fun when you click on like 2-3 words and the character gets the gist of what you want to say and just says it in his own words. But really isn't it getting dumbed down?? I remember in Kotor where i wanted to be either good or bad, and i read each option carefully to consider which one was the baddest, most benevolent, or (on one play-through) neutral. Now your much more of a spectator, its like, "would like your character to get pissed off or be charming??". After my first run, i just always had the top or bottom part of the convo selected and spammed the spacebar to get to my good or bad points and action.  
 
Sure you might say it's not a big deal, but i think its a step backward from integrated interactivity. 

#2 Posted by crusader8463 (14413 posts) -

Ya, it's one of the many things that is pissing me off about them dumbing down Dragon Age 2. There are many times in Mass Effect where my character said something I didn't want her to because the choices were not very clear, and I never had that problem in Dragon Age, KOTOR and all the old school RPG's that do it. Sadly those of us like you and I are shit out of luck because everything is being dumbed down for the masses across the board and that's always one of the first things to go.

#3 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -

I would say no. You are still able to get the gist of what they are saying and choose in accordance to your alignment.

#4 Posted by Bones8677 (3210 posts) -

Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers. 
 
"It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!"

#5 Posted by hedfone (1749 posts) -
@Bones8677 said:
" Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers.   "It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!" "
truez
#6 Posted by Yummylee (21242 posts) -

It's because ME has you play as 'Shepard' and allows you determine how he/she'll act but still in the confines of the character. Games like KOTOR/Dragon Age (the original of course..) instead have you build your character straight from the ground up thus allowing you much more specific dialogue choices. 
I'm not saying I prefer the approach in games like ME/Alpha Protocol, but that's what I think why there's such a distinction.

#7 Posted by Jimbo (9772 posts) -

Text parser or GTFO.

#8 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
 @crusader8463:   
TBH i'm not sure where DAO was going... it seems like they just don't know where to take the conversation paths next...  
I think there should be a little more opening up the conversation tree even further. For instance in ME2 i didn't feel there was a good and evil, (if you played NWN1-2), it felt like Chaotic good, and Lawful Good. I think this is a good direction, they should have had actually being evil.
@mazik765:  
yeah but it ruins part of the interactivity by not having you read and assess which is which. 
#9 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@Bones8677 said:
" Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers.   "It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!" "
Sooo....this guy?:
 
@crusader8463 said:
" Ya, it's one of the many things that is pissing me off about them dumbing down Dragon Age 2. There are many times in Mass Effect where my character said something I didn't want her to because the choices were not very clear, and I never had that problem in Dragon Age, KOTOR and all the old school RPG's that do it. Sadly those of us like you and I are shit out of luck because everything is being dumbed down for the masses across the board and that's always one of the first things to go. "

Sorry if we have insulted your mighty intelligence and fetish for unnecessary text with our insignificant minds. 
 
Seriously though, there is never a single situation in ME1 or 2 where I had an issue with this. The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to, and all the other text are usually questions to allow you to explore the lore of the galaxy.
#10 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11464 posts) -
@crusader8463 said:

" . Sadly those of us like you and I are shit out of luck because everything is being dumbed down for the masses across the board and that's always one of the first things to go. "

Wait, and KotOR wasn't a super dumbed down RPG streamlined for the masses (basically taking the 3rd ed D&D ruleset and making it for idiots) because it had "Star Wars" in the title? I think that game is still great, but if you want to talk about dumbing down for the masses you start here. In KotOR even though you were given 5 or 6 dialogue options, most of them produced the same result, with the obviously good and the obviously evil options perhaps resulting differently. And understanding intent in ME is pretty easy. The top right is paragon (professional/benevolent), the bottom right is renegade (aggressive/ruthless), the middle is neutral, and the left side is additional or expository options. Not to mention, I think the tradeoff; having a main character that speaks, is worth not having verbose strings of otherwise pithy dialog.
Online
#11 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@Bones8677 said:
" Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers.   "It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!" "
Elitists? I will bet you think you sound smart eh?? Its not really just reading text, that would be final fantasy, this is interacting with text, in other words, part of the game was reading and selecting. Whilst now they are just getting adrenaline junkies who probably barely speak english(i know a few).  
 
The true gamer is not being rewarded for his patience, he is merely getting ignored and abused because he is patient with games. 
#12 Edited by Jeust (10473 posts) -

Speaking truthfully, apart from the combat, most of the mechanics in ME aren't an evolution from KOTOR, they are mostly the same.  
 
But I agree with the conversation aspect. The options are much less clearer now. 

#13 Posted by hexx462 (506 posts) -

Dumbed down is the wrong term for it. While not perfect Mass Effect feels a bit more organic, there's something weird about reading out the exact lines your character is going to say ala KOTOR and Dragon Age. With Mass Effect you effectively choose the intent and then the conversation plays out. Keep in mind that all the dialogue is spoken in Mass Effect, imagine how redundnt it would be if you read the text read exactly as the speech that follows it?

#14 Posted by actionTACO (498 posts) -

i really can't see how they could've "dumb down" kotors dialog system seeing as it was all: 
1.) yes, i'll help you 
2.) no, in fact i'm gonna force lightning this entire planet of kittens because you bothered me  
 
might as well just make it BLUE=GOOD and RED=BAD and save yourself some writing

#15 Posted by Azteck (7449 posts) -
@Bones8677 said:
" Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers.   "It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!" "
For reals
#16 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@actionTACO:  
Granted there are times where it was straightfoward, but there are times where it wasn't, i recall making a few wrong decisions. In ME2 i don't even have to read the options and i am making the right ones. If i'm renegade, i will always pick bottom left, if thats unavailable then i pick bottom right. 
#17 Posted by dagas (2745 posts) -

Kotor, Dragon Age ans Mass Effect are all great games and the conversation options make sense for what the games try to be, I'm a bit concerned that DA2 is going in the direction of ME, but if the number of options remains the same I don't really see a problem with it. The great think about DA was that there was no good or evil unlike KotOR or Mass Effect it was just choices you made and they had consequences, but it wasn't like you had a good/evil meter. In KotOR you end up maxing out dark or light side to make the force powers cheaper and there was no reason to plaything but one of the extremes.

#18 Edited by ProfessorEss (7278 posts) -
@hexx462 said:

organic

Yup. I applaud the system.
It allows you to react more quickly and more naturally.
I find the conversations have a much nicer flow when you're not just reading all the lines and then having the one you picked read back to you.
#19 Posted by Jimbo (9772 posts) -
@mazik765 said:
"The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to..."
Isn't that exactly the point he's making?  I think that is precisely where it stops being streamlining and starts being 'dumbing-down'.  Colour coding the responses really is toddler territory.  That design decision is made entirely so people can play it without needing to engage their brain or consider what they're doing (I'm playing a Blue Guy!  Give me the Blue Points!).  If people want to play an RPG without the inconvenience of being asked to role-play, then why not just give them the option to select Blue Guy or Red Guy at the start and just play the appropriate cutscenes and dialogue automatically?
 
Games are still supposed to be an interactive medium aren't they?  Especially RPGs.  If it's fine to just keep 'streamlining' out interactivity without question (doing so is elitist, apparently) then what you eventually end up with is a movie.
#20 Edited by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@Jimbo said:
" @mazik765 said:
"The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to..."
Isn't that exactly the point he's making?  I think that is precisely where it stops being streamlining and starts being 'dumbing-down'.  Colour coding the responses really is toddler territory.  That design decision is made entirely so people can play it without needing to engage their brain or consider what they're doing (I'm playing a Blue Guy!  Give me the Blue Points!).  If people want to play an RPG without the inconvenience of being asked to role-play, then why not just give them the option to select Blue Guy or Red Guy at the start and just play the appropriate cutscenes and dialogue automatically? Games are still supposed to be an interactive medium aren't they?  Especially RPGs.  If it's fine to just keep 'streamlining' out interactivity without question (doing so is elitist, apparently) then what you eventually end up with is a movie. "
WHat he said, exactly, right off my tongue, if its that linear, just give us a choice from the start of the game which will give us different endings and different interactions. Why bother giving us a choice?? 
@ProfessorEss said:

" @hexx462 said:

organic

Yup. I applaud the system. It allows you to react more quickly and more naturally. I find the conversations have a much nicer flow when you're not just reading all the lines and then having the one you picked read back to you. "
I do get the gist of what your trying to say, but organic is the wrong word... fluid would be right.  I'm not denying its more fluid, i'm just saying its more like a movie and less like a game. 
#21 Posted by stinky (1543 posts) -

conversations aren't being dumbed down at all. 
 
its choice that is getting stripped away. remember in KOTOR when you could actually be bad? 
now with mass effect your choices are be polite or be a dick about something. 

#22 Posted by MikkaQ (10268 posts) -

It's just more efficient, gets the idea across without having to read any extra bullshit. Also it's more fun because reading a whole line, then picking it, then hearing the voice actor say it, is really annoying. This way, you find out what he's saying as he's saying it, more interesting this way. 

#23 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@stinky said:
" conversations aren't being dumbed down at all.  its choice that is getting stripped away. remember in KOTOR when you could actually be bad? now with mass effect your choices are be polite or be a dick about something.  "
I think i mentioned that earlier, but just for clarification purposes, NWN had chaotic, lawful, and neutral with their good and bad choices. And ME 2 felt like it was either chaotic good or lawful good.  
 
@XII_Sniper said:
" It's just more efficient, gets the idea across without having to read any extra bullshit. Also it's more fun because reading a whole line, then picking it, then hearing the voice actor say it, is really annoying. This way, you find out what he's saying as he's saying it, more interesting this way.  "
Its one less point of actual interactivity, and one step away from games and closer to movies. Also in Kotor the character never spoke, you choose your line, and other characters respond to it. 
#24 Posted by hexx462 (506 posts) -
@gamefreak9 said:
"I do get the gist of what your trying to say, but organic is the wrong word... fluid would be right.  I'm not denying its more fluid, i'm just saying its more like a movie and less like a game.  "
 
Fair point on fluid vs organic. But if you're reading a lot of text I could replace the word "movie" with "novel" in that statement and make the same argument in the case of KOTOR or DA.
#25 Edited by ProfessorEss (7278 posts) -
@gamefreak9: To each their own but I respectfully disagree. I think it makes it more like a game and less like a series of multiple choice question.
I'd actually go as far to say I think Bioware's dialogue device will be one of the better take-aways of this generation.
#26 Posted by hexx462 (506 posts) -
@ProfessorEss said:
" I'd actually go as far to say I think Bioware's dialogue device will be one of the better take-aways of this generation. "
Definitely. It's possibly my favorite part of the Mass Effect games, there's actually a bit of suspense in not knowing exactly what is going to be said and makes the dialogue much more entertaining.
#27 Edited by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@hexx462 said:
" @ProfessorEss said:
" I'd actually go as far to say I think Bioware's dialogue device will be one of the better take-aways of this generation. "
Definitely. It's possibly my favorite part of the Mass Effect games, there's actually a bit of suspense in not knowing exactly what is going to be said and makes the dialogue much more entertaining. "

Which is what makes movies entertaining... which means we are not capitalizing on our unique selling point.=control  
@hexx462 said:

" @gamefreak9 said:

"I do get the gist of what your trying to say, but organic is the wrong word... fluid would be right.  I'm not denying its more fluid, i'm just saying its more like a movie and less like a game.  "
 Fair point on fluid vs organic. But if you're reading a lot of text I could replace the word "movie" with "novel" in that statement and make the same argument in the case of KOTOR or DA. "
Oh wow i enjoyed the rebuttal :P. Well what i meant for you to take away from movie, which can also be taken from novel, is that the user is a voyeur. Especially when your choice is basically based on which alignment you chose. Unless you suddenly changed your mind, which would be cool except that its an inefficient way to play the game since you need to be consistent to go high enough in renegade/paragorn to unlock the extra conversations possible, such as helping morinth. 
#28 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@gamefreak9 said:
" @Jimbo said:
" @mazik765 said:
"The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to..."
Isn't that exactly the point he's making?  I think that is precisely where it stops being streamlining and starts being 'dumbing-down'.  Colour coding the responses really is toddler territory.  That design decision is made entirely so people can play it without needing to engage their brain or consider what they're doing (I'm playing a Blue Guy!  Give me the Blue Points!).  If people want to play an RPG without the inconvenience of being asked to role-play, then why not just give them the option to select Blue Guy or Red Guy at the start and just play the appropriate cutscenes and dialogue automatically? Games are still supposed to be an interactive medium aren't they?  Especially RPGs.  If it's fine to just keep 'streamlining' out interactivity without question (doing so is elitist, apparently) then what you eventually end up with is a movie. "
WHat he said, exactly, right off my tongue, if its that linear, just give us a choice from the start of the game which will give us different endings and different interactions. Why bother giving us a choice??
The games you used as examples of how to do it properly had the EXACT same linear paths. You were good or bad. The only difference between that and Mass Effect is that they make sure you understand the decision you're making via the colour, rather than leaving it to potentially ambiguous statements. So you're basically saying is it is dumbed down because it allows people to better understand the choice they are making? To me this sounds like a natural improvement of a game play mechanic that was not doing the job it was designed to do.
#29 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@mazik765 said:
" @gamefreak9 said:
" @Jimbo said:
" @mazik765 said:
"The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to..."
Isn't that exactly the point he's making?  I think that is precisely where it stops being streamlining and starts being 'dumbing-down'.  Colour coding the responses really is toddler territory.  That design decision is made entirely so people can play it without needing to engage their brain or consider what they're doing (I'm playing a Blue Guy!  Give me the Blue Points!).  If people want to play an RPG without the inconvenience of being asked to role-play, then why not just give them the option to select Blue Guy or Red Guy at the start and just play the appropriate cutscenes and dialogue automatically? Games are still supposed to be an interactive medium aren't they?  Especially RPGs.  If it's fine to just keep 'streamlining' out interactivity without question (doing so is elitist, apparently) then what you eventually end up with is a movie. "
WHat he said, exactly, right off my tongue, if its that linear, just give us a choice from the start of the game which will give us different endings and different interactions. Why bother giving us a choice??
The games you used as examples of how to do it properly had the EXACT same linear paths. You were good or bad. The only difference between that and Mass Effect is that they make sure you understand the decision you're making via the colour, rather than leaving it to potentially ambiguous statements. So you're basically saying is it is dumbed down because it allows people to better understand the choice they are making? To me this sounds like a natural improvement of a game play mechanic that was not doing the job it was designed to do. "
Translating text to good or bad was like a little mini game, which added to the interactivity, now that minigame has been aborted for dramatic effect, which is not all bad, its just a move that undermines what gaming is about. 
#30 Posted by HubrisRanger (476 posts) -

I much prefer the ME style of picking the tone or general jist of what you're going to say rather than having it be spelled out in a list of possible lines of dialogue. Part of it is that it gives the games, especially in  ME2, the opportunity to open up and play through rather dramatic scenes that I'm still affecting the narrative path that it goes down while side-stepping the issue of me just  feeling like I'm picking through menus; it gives it that cinematic effect that it is trying to achieve. And I don't think that seeing the whole line of text before choosing it changes the fact that I would pick the same stance; as others have said, it wasn't like it was ever really hard in KotOR to see which line of dialogue or moral decision was the clearly dark side or light side one.  
 
I think the real issue is the whole issue of a binary morality systems. By having Dark Side and Light Side, or Paragon and Renegade, the whole system breaks down because it becomes "Choosing X to get these points", especially if you're working to get particular content that will only unlock if your Bad or Good meter is high enough. One of the frustrations I've had is going through a game of Mass Effect, having my character change through her experiences, and instead of being rewarded for that character development, have it be that my P/R points split down the middle so I can't make certain, higher level dialogue choices. Conversely, the thing that DAO got so right was that it had no binary morality system, and merely gave you a set of choices that clearly had positive and negative sides to the arguments. Another game that did this remarkably well was Alpha Protocol, which used a system that was even further removed from straight lines of dialogue than older RPGs used, but had a very complex set of perimeters that created a very powerful sense of decision making the affected the way the end of that game played out.

#31 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@gamefreak9 said:
" @mazik765 said:
" @gamefreak9 said:
" @Jimbo said:
" @mazik765 said:
"The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to..."
Isn't that exactly the point he's making?  I think that is precisely where it stops being streamlining and starts being 'dumbing-down'.  Colour coding the responses really is toddler territory.  That design decision is made entirely so people can play it without needing to engage their brain or consider what they're doing (I'm playing a Blue Guy!  Give me the Blue Points!).  If people want to play an RPG without the inconvenience of being asked to role-play, then why not just give them the option to select Blue Guy or Red Guy at the start and just play the appropriate cutscenes and dialogue automatically? Games are still supposed to be an interactive medium aren't they?  Especially RPGs.  If it's fine to just keep 'streamlining' out interactivity without question (doing so is elitist, apparently) then what you eventually end up with is a movie. "
WHat he said, exactly, right off my tongue, if its that linear, just give us a choice from the start of the game which will give us different endings and different interactions. Why bother giving us a choice??
The games you used as examples of how to do it properly had the EXACT same linear paths. You were good or bad. The only difference between that and Mass Effect is that they make sure you understand the decision you're making via the colour, rather than leaving it to potentially ambiguous statements. So you're basically saying is it is dumbed down because it allows people to better understand the choice they are making? To me this sounds like a natural improvement of a game play mechanic that was not doing the job it was designed to do. "
Translating text to good or bad was like a little mini game, which added to the interactivity, now that minigame has been aborted for dramatic effect, which is not all bad, its just a move that undermines what gaming is about.  "
The problem is that this 'minigame' leaves the text meaning up to interpretation. What you see as being a terribly evil option might not appear that way to someone else. Like I said, the colour does not take away the interactivity at all. You still have the same options you did in previous games, but you eliminate the ambiguous dialogue decisions and errors resulting from them. So no I don't think it's dumbed down, I think that the mechanic has been fixed in a necessary way to allow people to clearly understand the decisions they are making.
#32 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@mazik765 said:
" @gamefreak9 said:
" @mazik765 said:
" @gamefreak9 said:
" @Jimbo said:
" @mazik765 said:
"The only options that make any difference at all are colour coded specifically to make sure to you don't make a decision you don't want to..."
Isn't that exactly the point he's making?  I think that is precisely where it stops being streamlining and starts being 'dumbing-down'.  Colour coding the responses really is toddler territory.  That design decision is made entirely so people can play it without needing to engage their brain or consider what they're doing (I'm playing a Blue Guy!  Give me the Blue Points!).  If people want to play an RPG without the inconvenience of being asked to role-play, then why not just give them the option to select Blue Guy or Red Guy at the start and just play the appropriate cutscenes and dialogue automatically? Games are still supposed to be an interactive medium aren't they?  Especially RPGs.  If it's fine to just keep 'streamlining' out interactivity without question (doing so is elitist, apparently) then what you eventually end up with is a movie. "
WHat he said, exactly, right off my tongue, if its that linear, just give us a choice from the start of the game which will give us different endings and different interactions. Why bother giving us a choice??
The games you used as examples of how to do it properly had the EXACT same linear paths. You were good or bad. The only difference between that and Mass Effect is that they make sure you understand the decision you're making via the colour, rather than leaving it to potentially ambiguous statements. So you're basically saying is it is dumbed down because it allows people to better understand the choice they are making? To me this sounds like a natural improvement of a game play mechanic that was not doing the job it was designed to do. "
Translating text to good or bad was like a little mini game, which added to the interactivity, now that minigame has been aborted for dramatic effect, which is not all bad, its just a move that undermines what gaming is about.  "
The problem is that this 'minigame' leaves the text meaning up to interpretation. What you see as being a terribly evil option might not appear that way to someone else. Like I said, the colour does not take away the interactivity at all. You still have the same options you did in previous games, but you eliminate the ambiguous dialogue decisions and errors resulting from them. So no I don't think it's dumbed down, I think that the mechanic has been fixed in a necessary way to allow people to clearly understand the decisions they are making. "
This comes back to what Jimbo said, if you eliminating that extra minigame and making the choices so much more transparent then you might as well have the choices chosen before the game starts, "would you like to play this game as a paragorn or renegade character?". In other words choice is an illusion if there is no risk or counterbalance. 
#33 Posted by Aronman789 (2676 posts) -

The dialog system they used makes sense for fast-paced games like Mass Effect, since you're trying to save the universe and don't have a lot of time, but for games that aren't as fast, and take a longer time, not only in gameplay, but in story as well, they should stick to the old system.

#34 Posted by Red (5994 posts) -

I do like the dialog wheel, although you are correct in that as soon as you make one choice, you've practically decided the rest of your choices. I hope ME3 supports more of a middle ground.

#35 Posted by Illmatic (1358 posts) -

The description of what's being said for each dialogue options are dumbed down but the gameplay is still the same. I'm still choosing whether I want to be good, bad, or neutral. Having the option be a few sentences long rather than a phrase doesn't make the option more fleshed out. It just makes it tedious to me. Choosing the simplified description of an option wasn't just about getting points to me. It also made watching my character's reaction much more entertaining as I only know the theme of my response, not the content. Why not select blue guy or red guy from the start as one poster commented? Because I wasn't simply a blue guy or red guy. I was a mixture of the two, as most realistic characters are. Sometimes I just wanted to shoot a guy in the face and be done with it.

#36 Posted by hexx462 (506 posts) -

Mass Effect really does need a "netrual alignment", it's my only complaint about the dialogue system.

#37 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@gamefreak9:  But there is risk in that if you play this way you might miss out on this or that. Saying colouring a dialogue option dumb the game down is like saying that cross hairs dumb a shooter down. It is just something that's there to make it easier for you to do what the game is trying to let you do.
#38 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -

yeah, i just think that games are being dumbed down for more people to be able to play them. stop doing thins to my games they are very annoying.

#39 Posted by gamefreak9 (2338 posts) -
@mazik765:  
plz read all of the discussion, i'm pretty sure your point is obsolete. 
#40 Posted by Scrawnto (2434 posts) -
@stinky said:
" conversations aren't being dumbed down at all.  its choice that is getting stripped away. remember in KOTOR when you could actually be bad? now with mass effect your choices are be polite or be a dick about something.  "
But in KOTOR there is the whole Jedi/Sith thing. It makes sense for evil to be a valid path for a force user. In Mass Effect there's no way you could be evil and have a satisfying conclusion in the narrative they wanted to build. The council/Cerberus would stop aiding you, and it's not like Sovereign or the Collectors were going to be your friends.
#41 Posted by Shumian (2 posts) -
@hexx462: 
I agree, I remember playing ME1 and going a pretty neutral path by doing as felt I would of done given the situation, which gave a mix of paragon/renegade and neutral which in the end, didn't really give much to the player. Advantages for being neutral would be a great addition.
#42 Posted by Origina1Penguin (3500 posts) -

Some of the conversations in Mass Effect have several lines of dialogue for each choice. With up to six choices, the text is shortened out of necessity. I have no problem with that. However, I do think it is strange when really short lines are represented by text that doesn't quite match up. It really isn't a big deal though, and the system works very well in regards to choosing quickly.
#43 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -

The idea that the game giving us more information (ie., color coding) is somehow "dumbed down" seems wrong to me. I'd much rather a game give me more information than less. That ME lets me choose knowingly what direction I'm going is a good thing. The idea that people are playing as a "blue guy" or "red guy" is silly, and the stats Bioware released about how often people skip dialogue (rarely) seems to demonstrate that most players are paying attention.
 
But, then, if they don't want to pay attention, it's no concern of mine. It sounds like a lot of people here simply don't like that people aren't playing the game the same way they are.

#44 Posted by Gre (154 posts) -

I'm actually playing through KOTOR now, since it was just $2.50 on steam, and I never played it when it came out.  I played through Mass Effect 1 and 2, and it is easy to see how KOTOR is a precursor to ME.  The conversations in Mass Effect are definitely more cinematic, and I can understand and appreciate the design choice of only showing a "teaser" on the dialog choice menu and then having a longer conversation play out.  That's fine by me.  However, I do not like the Mass Effect system of having paragon choices on top and renegade choices on bottom.  I understand why they did it - in a sense, instead of having the player pick precise responses, he or she is just given three options for every choice - be nice, be neutral, be a jerk.  It's too easy to be good (or bad).  In fact, I was able to complete the endgame sequence without anyone dying just by completing everyone's loyalty mission, choosing the most powerful character for each mission, and then making "good" choices (I think) at every turn.  
Most conversations in KOTOR are like this, but occasionally you do get more than three choices and occasionally it's not always clear which is the light side and which is the dark side option.  I would actually have liked the game to offer even more  ambiguous  dialog choices.  It's fun to have to think a situation and try to choose between unclear options.  It's like in Ultima 4 - some of you may remember that when you entered Skara Brae, there was an NPC who would ask you if you'd  reached the summit of spiritual perfection (or something like that).  Now, even if you had achieved partial avatarhood in spirituality or even if your were a full eight-part avatar, if you answered yes you'd loose points in humility.  Now, you could disagree with Richard Garriot's interpretation of humility or virtue in general, but the conversation made you think.  Now, before anyone jumps on me, I'm not saying one option is better or worse in any absolute sense - I'm just saying what I prefer. 
If I could make my dream RPG, the conversation system would be somewhere between KOTOR and ME - there would not be a 1-to-1 relationship between what I see in the choice menu and what the character says, but there would be meaningful and ambiguous choices.

#45 Posted by TheSeductiveMoose (3617 posts) -

You a game that had a great conversation system? The Witcher.

#46 Posted by pretender15 (192 posts) -

Everything in gaming is getting dumbed down, except for graphics. Graphics do NOT make up for a lack of gameplay.

#47 Posted by pretender15 (192 posts) -
@Bones8677 said:
" Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers.   "It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!" "
Don't start that shit again. We had this argument yesterday, remember? He's right, you're wrong, get on with your life, don't start a flamewar. Have you learned nothing from yesterday? He's not elitist, he's speaking the truth. It's not streamlining, it's dumbing down. Plain and simple.
#48 Posted by Bones8677 (3210 posts) -
@pretender15 said:

" @Bones8677 said:

" Only Elitists call streamlining, "dumb-down." As if anything that isn't overly complicated is too simple and only intended for toddlers.   "It isn't a game unless I'm spending hours in menus and reading text!!!" "
Don't start that shit again.
 Start what again? I don't start things. Not now, not then. Do you have me confused with someone else?

We had this argument yesterday, remember?

  What argument are you talking about? I never argued with anyone, least of which you.

He's right, you're wrong, get on with your life, don't start a flamewar.

 I left one comment at the start of this thread.

 Have you learned nothing from yesterday?

 Did you have a fever dream about me? We never spoke. 

He's not elitist, he's speaking the truth. It's not streamlining, it's dumbing down. Plain and simple. "

Well that's just, like your opinion, man.  
#49 Posted by mazik765 (2315 posts) -
@pretender15 said:
" Everything in gaming is getting dumbed down, except for graphics. Graphics do NOT make up for a lack of gameplay. "
I would disagree. Like I said earlier, this change in particular feels more like a natural progression of the dialogue tree mechanic.
#50 Posted by Brodehouse (9576 posts) -

You're not playing 'your guy', you're loosely directing Commander Shepard.  What's the difference, when you're just choosing pre-written text for your character anyway.  If you want a guy you can control completely, play tabletop games.  Otherwise quit bitching and get out of the kitchen.