Kingdom's of Amalur: Reckoning and it's Lorestone bugs.

Posted by PoisonJam7 (356 posts) -

One of my favorite activities in Kingdom's of Amalur (henceforth referred to as "KOA") was scouring the landscape looking for all the "Lorestones." Which are these magic stones constructed by the Fae that are placed in areas of importance to them and their history, and when activated, whoever placed the stone will tell you a tale related to whatever the stone was placed to commemorate. All of these stones recount their tales in sets, and there are hundreds of stones and several sets. Once a set is completed, your character get's a permanent stat boost. (Such as +10% Health and Mana, or +10% Damage to Fae) Many of the stories are told as poems, some as straight up fairy tales and some as songs. (And one particular set has been hijacked by humans who use them as personal diaries) My favorite were the fairy tale ones.

An annoying aspect I encountered though was that the volume of the actor's recounting these tales was drastically lower to all the other sounds in the game; so when I activated a stone, I would need to crank the volume way up, or just read the subtitles, which had their own quirks. Oftentimes, the subtitles would be vastly out of sync with the audio. Sometimes it would be perfect, but more often then not, it would show one section of text for far too long while the actor was already way ahead of what was being shown, and in some cases it would show you a large section of text for a split second, then jump ahead to where the audio was at the time, sometimes skipping entire sections of the story. A small bug, but an annoying one. (I should also mention I played this game on PC, so I'm unaware if this bug is present in the console versions)

One more annoying feature related to the low audio of the stones was that if you had any interest at all in hearing the story, you would need to make sure the area was clear of enemies before activating it. Because the combat audio is so much louder than the Lorestone audio, it would be completely drowned out; and you would have no time to read the subtitles while in combat, even if they happened to work properly. Unfortunately, sometimes (albeit rarely) activating a stone spawns a group of enemies around you, pretty much robbing you of any chance to hear that stone's tale.

But anyways, this was just something that annoyed me. You can kind of tell that towards the end of the game, with the last zones of the game, their stones tend to work the best in terms of subtitle sync. So they must have started to figure it out towards the end of development and didn't have time to go back and fix all the others before launch. Even though, most developers will make the last zones of a game first and the first levels last. I don't think that was the case here. I can forgive this, since 38 Studios is owned by a former Baseball player. He's still learning the ropes.

#1 Posted by PoisonJam7 (356 posts) -

One of my favorite activities in Kingdom's of Amalur (henceforth referred to as "KOA") was scouring the landscape looking for all the "Lorestones." Which are these magic stones constructed by the Fae that are placed in areas of importance to them and their history, and when activated, whoever placed the stone will tell you a tale related to whatever the stone was placed to commemorate. All of these stones recount their tales in sets, and there are hundreds of stones and several sets. Once a set is completed, your character get's a permanent stat boost. (Such as +10% Health and Mana, or +10% Damage to Fae) Many of the stories are told as poems, some as straight up fairy tales and some as songs. (And one particular set has been hijacked by humans who use them as personal diaries) My favorite were the fairy tale ones.

An annoying aspect I encountered though was that the volume of the actor's recounting these tales was drastically lower to all the other sounds in the game; so when I activated a stone, I would need to crank the volume way up, or just read the subtitles, which had their own quirks. Oftentimes, the subtitles would be vastly out of sync with the audio. Sometimes it would be perfect, but more often then not, it would show one section of text for far too long while the actor was already way ahead of what was being shown, and in some cases it would show you a large section of text for a split second, then jump ahead to where the audio was at the time, sometimes skipping entire sections of the story. A small bug, but an annoying one. (I should also mention I played this game on PC, so I'm unaware if this bug is present in the console versions)

One more annoying feature related to the low audio of the stones was that if you had any interest at all in hearing the story, you would need to make sure the area was clear of enemies before activating it. Because the combat audio is so much louder than the Lorestone audio, it would be completely drowned out; and you would have no time to read the subtitles while in combat, even if they happened to work properly. Unfortunately, sometimes (albeit rarely) activating a stone spawns a group of enemies around you, pretty much robbing you of any chance to hear that stone's tale.

But anyways, this was just something that annoyed me. You can kind of tell that towards the end of the game, with the last zones of the game, their stones tend to work the best in terms of subtitle sync. So they must have started to figure it out towards the end of development and didn't have time to go back and fix all the others before launch. Even though, most developers will make the last zones of a game first and the first levels last. I don't think that was the case here. I can forgive this, since 38 Studios is owned by a former Baseball player. He's still learning the ropes.

#2 Edited by pweidman (2342 posts) -

The story bits from the lorestones seem super disjointed to me, as far as the lore goes. I assume that's what they intended them to funtion as. But you're right about the low volume(despite changing in the options ime), and the action continuing. Is there not a way to listen to them in the menu later somewhere though? Haven't tried to find that, but thought I read that somewhere, dunno.

Haven't noticed the caption thing at all either, lol. And I've always assumed games were designed front to back. Never thought they would make later zones first and go back to the beginning to create, add, or improve stuff. Maybe you mean polishing last to first? Interesting point there tc.

Fantastic first effort imo by 38 and BHG btw, regardless of Shilling's background et al.

#3 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4851 posts) -

@pweidman said:

The story bits from the lorestones seem super disjointed to me, as far as the lore goes. I assume that's what they intended them to funtion as. But you're right about the low volume(despite changing in the options ime), and the action continuing. Is there not a way to listen to them in the menu later somewhere though?

Indeed there is. Go from the start menu into the Skills menu, and you should see "Lorestones" as its own sub-menu. From there you can check the stat bonuses for each set as well as listen to all the ones you have unlocked.

#4 Posted by Baldvinb (25 posts) -

@pweidman said:

The story bits from the lorestones seem super disjointed to me, as far as the lore goes. I assume that's what they intended them to funtion as. But you're right about the low volume(despite changing in the options ime), and the action continuing. Is there not a way to listen to them in the menu later somewhere though? Haven't tried to find that, but thought I read that somewhere, dunno.

Yes you can listen to them, you will find them under Status and then Lorestones

#5 Posted by PoisonJam7 (356 posts) -

That's good to know. I'm certain I've missed large chunks of several of the stories.

#6 Posted by PoisonJam7 (356 posts) -

@pweidman said:

Never thought they would make later zones first and go back to the beginning to create, add, or improve stuff. Maybe you mean polishing last to first? Interesting point there tc.

A bit of both actually. The general idea is that you want your first level to be on par with what you consider to be the best your game has to offer, which is generally made during the later stages of production (e.g the final levels) after your team has gotten comfortable with the tech and tools and whatnot. It's also used so there aren't wide leaps in quality from level to level.

I can't remember where I read this, but I believe it was from an eastern developer, so maybe it isn't such a good idea with the luck they've been having lately, lol. Of course, with the scale of today's games, I'm sure all the levels in a game are being worked on simultaneously in some fashion.

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