15 Comments
Edited by Hassun

After a gruelling marathon, time to let my eyes rest and let my ears do all the work.

Edited by deskp

I don't like how this guy comes off as if he has the answer to everything . And why does he hate on ubisoft atleast they try, and they do alot of research.

they make big high profile games and they have the possibility of putting out some diversity so complaining about them doesent seem very productive.

Edited by pinky315

This guy says like alot...

Edited by TheMasterDS

I thought he came off as a bit pretentious. Also using Jet Set Radio as an example of Hip Hop being a thing to take seriously is not an idea worth taking seriously.

Edited by PandaBear

@themasterds said:

I thought he came off as a bit pretentious. Also using Jet Set Radio as an example of Hip Hop being a thing to take seriously is not an idea worth taking seriously.

It's the typical "this is a big thing in my part of the world, therefore it's big everywhere".

It's not. Hip-hop culture in the 90s was very pervasive, but that's just not true anymore and certainly not on a global scale. The man needs to travel before he drops that kind of hyperbole.

Once he spat out that shit I knew I couldn't take him seriously.

EDIT: Oh and Seth Macfarlane makes fun of rape victims too. Long before he got "racist". But he was ok with that?

And picking on Gears of War and Halo for their stories ... games aren't film. And they don't need to be. It's an interactive medium, stories are secondary in those games and that's a goddamn fact. Bungie has said they make the mechanics first and fit the story around it, not the other way around.

His constant 'ummm'ing and 'ahhh'ing shows he hasn't thought this stuff through at all. Challenge him Patrick!

Posted by Beomoose

We got the "trust fund homeless" in Seattle too. I refer to their canine companions as their "Plan B" Dogs.

Edited by ScreamingGhost

An interesting interview. I realize most games storytelling aren't the highest form of the art but people really make them out to be worse then they are more often then not. Just a personal pet peeve I suppose because I hear that statement repeated more times then I can count. Still a very insightful interview, with a healthy discussion about storytelling and diversity in games.

Posted by TheMasterDS

@pandabear: There's an explanation for this later on: He's from New York. After that became clear and he started talking about all the tropes regular human beings have never heard of (Like something called Connecticut Punk where the airships are powered by Connecticut) it all made sense. New Yorkers always think they're the center of the world and are terrible because of it.

Posted by Daouzin

Surprised by so many negative comments, I basically agree with him entirely.

There's a problem and he has a lot of great suggestions to address it. Maybe they aren't the end all answers, but a fresh voice with a fresh point of view.

Great interview, Patrick!

Edited by PandaBear

@themasterds said:

@pandabear: There's an explanation for this later on: He's from New York. After that became clear and he started talking about all the tropes regular human beings have never heard of (Like something called Connecticut Punk where the airships are powered by Connecticut) it all made sense. New Yorkers always think they're the center of the world and are terrible because of it.

Yeah I picked up on that upon reflection. It just bugs me that he's telling people to only write about people and places they've been to and experienced, then goes and make big statements about how the whole world is ruled by a culture prevalent in an area he lives in. What a hypocrite.

AND cutting down UbiSoft for devoting an entire office (which I doubt is true) to writing stories he considers terrible ... well at least a major studio made an attempt at creating a Muslim hero in an interesting historical setting (AC) rather than the umpteenth white guy in the modern military killing brown people. But no, that's not good enough for him. Whatever. I can't wait for his heavy handed story telling.

Posted by dr_mantas

@pandabear: Yeah, seems like complaining for complaining's sake. It's such an echo chamber - Patrick tends to agree to any criticism of the "big guy", even though the small guy can indeed be terrible and heavy handed.

Posted by patrickklepek

@themasterds said:

@pandabear: There's an explanation for this later on: He's from New York. After that became clear and he started talking about all the tropes regular human beings have never heard of (Like something called Connecticut Punk where the airships are powered by Connecticut) it all made sense. New Yorkers always think they're the center of the world and are terrible because of it.

AND cutting down UbiSoft for devoting an entire office (which I doubt is true) to writing stories he considers terrible ...

They do, essentially.

Posted by PandaBear

@pandabear said:

@themasterds said:

@pandabear: There's an explanation for this later on: He's from New York. After that became clear and he started talking about all the tropes regular human beings have never heard of (Like something called Connecticut Punk where the airships are powered by Connecticut) it all made sense. New Yorkers always think they're the center of the world and are terrible because of it.

AND cutting down UbiSoft for devoting an entire office (which I doubt is true) to writing stories he considers terrible ...

They do, essentially.

But what was his point? UbiSoft setup an office (or team) to write better stories, they aren't that great... and? There's plenty of people and teams making stories that don't work out, look at friend-of-the-site Gary Whitta's movies and their Metacritic average. But he also worked on critically acclaimed The Walking Dead from Telltale. It's not a case of one bad story = all stories will be bad from now on. AND this team has tried to incorporate so many cultures in their games, for better or worse. They tried, give them some credit.

And criticising the story of Gears of War is pointless. It's the mechanics that make games great... far more often than story. And he had a huge problem with Cole Train basically saying it's whitey writing yet another dumb black guy and all us being okay with it means were complacent with racism. Better let Jeff know, I mean he's stated multiple times Cole and his arc was the best part of Gears 3. How dare he like such a negative stereotype, right?

Singling out that point of mine and ignoring the rest isn't fair. My overall point stands -- for a man who is sick of gross generalisations and stereotypes dominating big budget games he sure did make a lot of gross generalisations about the rest of the world.

Edited by Dark_Lord_Spam

There's a great point to be made here, but I don't think Allen stated it very effectively.

@pandabear said:

Let's be honest. Altair is just "white-guy video game protagonist" in an Islamic setting.

@themasterds said:

I thought he came off as a bit pretentious. Also using Jet Set Radio as an example of Hip Hop being a thing to take seriously is not an idea worth taking seriously.

It's the typical "this is a big thing in my part of the world, therefore it's big everywhere".

It's not. Hip-hop culture in the 90s was very pervasive, but that's just not true anymore and certainly not on a global scale. The man needs to travel before he drops that kind of hyperbole.

Once he spat out that shit I knew I couldn't take him seriously.

Whoa, whoa, whoa. The only times I heard mention of urban culture in this interview was specifically in relation to different creators' efforts to reach out before constructing a piece. You're implying that he's trying to globalize some sort of social brand (he's not), and simultaneously denigrating the man's intelligence and the culture itself. I think that maybe you need to take your own perceptions a little less seriously before hearing what someone else has to say.

Edited by PandaBear

There's a great point to be made here, but I don't think Allen stated it very effectively.

@pandabear said:

Let's be honest. Altair is just "white-guy video game protagonist" in an Islamic setting.

@pandabear said:

@themasterds said:

I thought he came off as a bit pretentious. Also using Jet Set Radio as an example of Hip Hop being a thing to take seriously is not an idea worth taking seriously.

It's the typical "this is a big thing in my part of the world, therefore it's big everywhere".

It's not. Hip-hop culture in the 90s was very pervasive, but that's just not true anymore and certainly not on a global scale. The man needs to travel before he drops that kind of hyperbole.

Once he spat out that shit I knew I couldn't take him seriously.

Whoa, whoa, whoa. The only times I heard mention of urban culture in this interview was specifically in relation to different creators' efforts to reach out before constructing a piece. You're implying that he's trying to globalize some sort of social brand (he's not), and simultaneously denigrating the man's intelligence and the culture itself. I think that maybe you need to take your own perceptions a little less seriously before hearing what someone else has to say.

This is a direct quote: "Hip hop came out of th 70s, right, out of having nothing in the Bronx, like in like one of the most diverse cities in the world. Black people made a culture that like helped like envelope Latino people and created this worldwide culture that dominates the world today. It's something that is everywhere, like you can see it in Jet Set Radio that like hip-hop is something that comes back and influences video games too as far away as Japan from New York, so it's kinda like if that could happen what would happen if try to, you know, encourage and foster this other culture into helping independent games culture grow."

---

Forgive me for thinking a man saying a culture "dominates the world today" means he thinks a culture "dominates the world today". It does not... Never mind he just dismissed Latinos as being basically black people now. I went into this interview with an open mind and listened to him ummm and ahhh through a rambling explanation of HIS world view and how HE thinks the whole world is influence by a culture HE'S surrounded by. It's not even true of video games. The influence of the European market and is as strong as the New York-centric culture.

And I never said Altair was perfect. But the writing studio he dislikes at UbiSoft, as Patrick pointed out, is called Alice and they came up with Vaas for Far Cry 3. Who was, in mine and a lot of other people's opinion, a brilliant antagonist. AND how exactly was Altair basically a white guy protagonist? Like I said, he's not perfect, but to knock a studio for even trying ... it just sounds like a lot of professional jealousy to me.