What'cha Been Doing Pt. 7: Runic Games has answers!

    This week:
Modern Warfare 2
Left 4 Dead 2
aaaand Wiiii.
TV MOVIES GO.
Also, Runic Games' answers!

Modern Warfare 2

By now you've all more than likely heard the faults and pros of Modern Warfare 2 a million times, singleplayer bad, multiplayer good. I do heavily agree with that which is sad seeing as how much I loved the first Modern Warfare's story. This one just seems to be all over the place, trying to top every "holy shit" moment with another and after a while that get's incredibly tiring. The story got to a point where I said "What the fuck is happening?...Oh right, I don't care." The "No Russian" mission is...bad. It goes past being disturbing to the point of being just dumb. It was so incredibly unnecessary and made no since. It seemed to just be Infinity Ward trying to be 'edgy.' Some of  the level design in the game is the worst I've ever seen in a CoD game (excluding the third Call of Duty). They seem to be standing all around you and blending in with your soldiers and you'll be constantly thinking if you should him or not which means a lot of friendly fire kills or a lot of deaths.

One mode that a lot of people aren't giving the love it deserves is the Spec Ops mode. Spec Ops runs you through a lot of different situations such as "Kill this many people" or "Sneak past all these people." It all boils down to not dying and killing some people/getting to a certain place but they throw in so many different obstacles like a lot of snow, dogs, or having to kill them with a certain weapon. This mode is really a blast to play with friends, by yourself it does seem a bit more challenging. The mode definitely feels as if it should be played co-op only. It is very obvious the Infinity Ward spent most of their time of the multiplayer aspect of Modern Warfare and that shows and I honestly think that was a very smart thing to do as this is the best and most fun I've had with a multiplayer game in a long, long while. I could bet good money that 95 percent of the people reading this already own Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 and if you're one of that small percent that doesn't have it, go buy it. It's something you will not regret.

Left 4 Dead 2 demo

I went into Left 4 Dead 2's demo with the full expectations that this was going to be Left 4 Dead 1 in the day time and something Valve
should've released as DLC. While I've changed my mind a bit, I still will not pay 60 dollars for this because A) I don't have the money and B) I'm just sick and tired of Left 4 Dead. L4D2 feels like a sequel, adding some awesome new zombie classes, melee weapons, light outside, among other things but popping this out so quickly was a terrible choice seeing as I just played a game with the exact gameplay mechanics last year, I don't want a new one now. Be normal and work 2 years on the sequel.

From the demo, another thing I noticed is that Valve seems to be working on actually putting kind of a story into this which is interesting, not because I really care about a story, but because I want to know if it will be a utter disaster. Left 4 Dead 2 just looks a lot better than the original. Apart from being brighter, it has a very crisp feel and saying this game is 'beautiful' is something you can honestly say about L4D2 that you couldn't say about the first. The addition of more items like the Boomer vomit grenades are a very great thing and just plain fun to use. One item I do not enjoy is the adrenaline needle. Where, once injecting yourself, you can pretty much just run through all the horde like you just shot up a bunch of Meth. It seems incredibly useless and something that has no reason being in the game. Demos are supposed to get someone hyped for a game and although, like I previously mentioned, I'm not buying Left 4 Dead 2, I cannot wait to get it in the mail from Gamefly.

I Have a Wii

 That's me.
For my birthday my brother got me a Wii. That's pretty rad seeing as now I can get a new video card for my PC for Christmas now. First thing I done with my new found Wii is download some WiiWare and Virtual Console titles. The titles being Tecmo Bowl, Super Mario Bros. 3, and Family Table Tennis. None of which really held my attention for too long. Then popped in Wii Sports which is kind of bad. I'm shocked how stoked people was for that when it was released. The Tennis, Bowling, and Boxing seem decent but not good enough to make me play it for too long. And of course, Wii Play. I played that for about 10 minutes and turned it off, never playing that again. The one game I played that was good though, Boom Blox.

I got the first Boom Blox and that game is surprisingly fantastic. The amount of excitement I feel when an entire tower starts falling over is unexplainable. The game features a story that, lets be honest, I'm not paying attention to at all. Boom Blox features a creation tool which I haven't really dove too deep into yet but from what I can tell, it's pretty good. YOu earn parts for the creation mode by doing the events in the Adventure Mode, that never really was the keep me going factor in the game though. That is where it falls, Boom Blox just kind of starts to bore me after a little while. It is fun and everything...for 30 minutes to an hour but after that, I feel like I've done all I can do with the game. I would definitely say rent the game if you're interested at all.
 
 


Runic Games' answers your questions!

What will Torchlight the MMO will be about?

The overall storyline is in preproduction – we will start focusing more on MMO preproduction as soon as we finish focusing on all the launch events – bug fixes, the patch, getting the demo on our site and getting TorchED out! Since a lot of the Devs haven’t slept more than six hours in the last month, we’ll take a breather and then come back strong, focusing solely on the MMO.
 
Will there be more than 3 class types in the MMO version of Torchlight?

Definitely though we can’t say what they will be quite yet. However we can tell you that the 3 character-classes in the Single Player are not necessarily going to be playable classes in the MMO.
 
Ask Runic Games what differentiates them from most developers.
 
We are a pretty small indie studio (27 folks) with strong roots in the ARPG world. Also we were an a-typical startup, of 17 people at inception, basically everyone who worked on Mythos from Flagship North. Being small means we can address individual concerns pretty quickly and effectively, but it also means we have to be very careful with our scope and our resources – we can only do so much. It’s a good way to make sure we’re always working on Things That Matter Most.
 
(These are some whopper questions)
 
Question: Are they going to add a way to better manage your pets? I made the Alchemist and went down the Lore skill tree so i always have like 6 imps, my cat, Golems and all my zombies/skeletons out at all times and i can never tell when they die because there is almost always too many things on screen to tell. I would like to see a little window tab that lists the pets and their HP like the Mastermind class does in City of Heroes, or at least some kind of coloured outline/glow under your pets so you can tell them apart from the 10-20 other mobs running around on the screen. I was just curious to know if they plan to address this problem for my build/class. 
 
We don’t plan to add any new content at this time, but it’s totally possible someone will mod that in. The ability to summon a lot of minions is certainly a really cool feature and it does get a little crazy, but the only pet manager we really have is for your initial pet, the wolf/lynx choice at the very beginning, which remains onscreen the whole time.
 
Part 2: Another pet question if i can, are they planning to fix the pets path finding capabilities or are they just going to balance the pets always getting stuck/lost into the set? 
 
Again, we aren't planning on significant Torchlight single-player development right now, but more pet control features are on the agenda for the MMO.
 
6. Question:  Will the MMO be using the same setting of Torchlight for all of the games questing, or will it have various cities/towns with their own unique dungeon systems below them?
 
In the MMO, Torchlight will probably be one of many different towns within an overworld. There will be many dungeons, both random and instanced, and outdoor dungeons, as well.
 
Question:  Will there ever be a sequel or expansion pack for the single player Torchlight game in the future, or is all of the companies development time being put into the MMO? If there is an expansion or sequel being made what kind of upgrades might we expect.

Never say never but for now we plan to focus on the MMO. We may release some things that we are also putting into the MMO if we can as extra content, and we’ll also get into alpha and beta in the MMO as soon as possible.
 
Question:  What made you guys decide on the games art style over a more dark or mature style that these type of games are usually set in?

It was a matter of personal style and preference for non-grungy palettes, combined with a desire to not compete with D3. That’s the answer in a nutshell; Art Director Jason Beck wrote pages and pages on how this came about for Gamasutra, and you can read it here:
http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/4123/from_the_ashes_of_mythos_the_art_.php

TV

Bored to Death- Take a Dive, SEASON FINALE: A-. Great ending to a fantastic new series. I love this show as it gave me one of the best first seasons of a show I've ever seen. 
Dexter- Slack Tide: A
Glee- Wheels: A- An amazing episode hampered by a ridiculously dumb plot twist.
South Park- Dances with Smurfs: B
The Office- Murder: A
Survivor- Tastes Like Chicken: A- Fucking Russell...I love you.
Community- Debate 109: B+

Movies

The Assassination of a High School President- B

Next week
Wii Sports Resort
GTA: Episodes from Liberty City
Assassins Creed 2
 
Th-that's all folks! Any questions or comments, post below. Until next time, 

Paalam!  
6 Comments
7 Comments
Posted by TheGamerGeek

    This week:
Modern Warfare 2
Left 4 Dead 2
aaaand Wiiii.
TV MOVIES GO.
Also, Runic Games' answers!

Modern Warfare 2

By now you've all more than likely heard the faults and pros of Modern Warfare 2 a million times, singleplayer bad, multiplayer good. I do heavily agree with that which is sad seeing as how much I loved the first Modern Warfare's story. This one just seems to be all over the place, trying to top every "holy shit" moment with another and after a while that get's incredibly tiring. The story got to a point where I said "What the fuck is happening?...Oh right, I don't care." The "No Russian" mission is...bad. It goes past being disturbing to the point of being just dumb. It was so incredibly unnecessary and made no since. It seemed to just be Infinity Ward trying to be 'edgy.' Some of  the level design in the game is the worst I've ever seen in a CoD game (excluding the third Call of Duty). They seem to be standing all around you and blending in with your soldiers and you'll be constantly thinking if you should him or not which means a lot of friendly fire kills or a lot of deaths.

One mode that a lot of people aren't giving the love it deserves is the Spec Ops mode. Spec Ops runs you through a lot of different situations such as "Kill this many people" or "Sneak past all these people." It all boils down to not dying and killing some people/getting to a certain place but they throw in so many different obstacles like a lot of snow, dogs, or having to kill them with a certain weapon. This mode is really a blast to play with friends, by yourself it does seem a bit more challenging. The mode definitely feels as if it should be played co-op only. It is very obvious the Infinity Ward spent most of their time of the multiplayer aspect of Modern Warfare and that shows and I honestly think that was a very smart thing to do as this is the best and most fun I've had with a multiplayer game in a long, long while. I could bet good money that 95 percent of the people reading this already own Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 and if you're one of that small percent that doesn't have it, go buy it. It's something you will not regret.

Left 4 Dead 2 demo

I went into Left 4 Dead 2's demo with the full expectations that this was going to be Left 4 Dead 1 in the day time and something Valve
should've released as DLC. While I've changed my mind a bit, I still will not pay 60 dollars for this because A) I don't have the money and B) I'm just sick and tired of Left 4 Dead. L4D2 feels like a sequel, adding some awesome new zombie classes, melee weapons, light outside, among other things but popping this out so quickly was a terrible choice seeing as I just played a game with the exact gameplay mechanics last year, I don't want a new one now. Be normal and work 2 years on the sequel.

From the demo, another thing I noticed is that Valve seems to be working on actually putting kind of a story into this which is interesting, not because I really care about a story, but because I want to know if it will be a utter disaster. Left 4 Dead 2 just looks a lot better than the original. Apart from being brighter, it has a very crisp feel and saying this game is 'beautiful' is something you can honestly say about L4D2 that you couldn't say about the first. The addition of more items like the Boomer vomit grenades are a very great thing and just plain fun to use. One item I do not enjoy is the adrenaline needle. Where, once injecting yourself, you can pretty much just run through all the horde like you just shot up a bunch of Meth. It seems incredibly useless and something that has no reason being in the game. Demos are supposed to get someone hyped for a game and although, like I previously mentioned, I'm not buying Left 4 Dead 2, I cannot wait to get it in the mail from Gamefly.

I Have a Wii

 That's me.
For my birthday my brother got me a Wii. That's pretty rad seeing as now I can get a new video card for my PC for Christmas now. First thing I done with my new found Wii is download some WiiWare and Virtual Console titles. The titles being Tecmo Bowl, Super Mario Bros. 3, and Family Table Tennis. None of which really held my attention for too long. Then popped in Wii Sports which is kind of bad. I'm shocked how stoked people was for that when it was released. The Tennis, Bowling, and Boxing seem decent but not good enough to make me play it for too long. And of course, Wii Play. I played that for about 10 minutes and turned it off, never playing that again. The one game I played that was good though, Boom Blox.

I got the first Boom Blox and that game is surprisingly fantastic. The amount of excitement I feel when an entire tower starts falling over is unexplainable. The game features a story that, lets be honest, I'm not paying attention to at all. Boom Blox features a creation tool which I haven't really dove too deep into yet but from what I can tell, it's pretty good. YOu earn parts for the creation mode by doing the events in the Adventure Mode, that never really was the keep me going factor in the game though. That is where it falls, Boom Blox just kind of starts to bore me after a little while. It is fun and everything...for 30 minutes to an hour but after that, I feel like I've done all I can do with the game. I would definitely say rent the game if you're interested at all.
 
 


Runic Games' answers your questions!

What will Torchlight the MMO will be about?

The overall storyline is in preproduction – we will start focusing more on MMO preproduction as soon as we finish focusing on all the launch events – bug fixes, the patch, getting the demo on our site and getting TorchED out! Since a lot of the Devs haven’t slept more than six hours in the last month, we’ll take a breather and then come back strong, focusing solely on the MMO.
 
Will there be more than 3 class types in the MMO version of Torchlight?

Definitely though we can’t say what they will be quite yet. However we can tell you that the 3 character-classes in the Single Player are not necessarily going to be playable classes in the MMO.
 
Ask Runic Games what differentiates them from most developers.
 
We are a pretty small indie studio (27 folks) with strong roots in the ARPG world. Also we were an a-typical startup, of 17 people at inception, basically everyone who worked on Mythos from Flagship North. Being small means we can address individual concerns pretty quickly and effectively, but it also means we have to be very careful with our scope and our resources – we can only do so much. It’s a good way to make sure we’re always working on Things That Matter Most.
 
(These are some whopper questions)
 
Question: Are they going to add a way to better manage your pets? I made the Alchemist and went down the Lore skill tree so i always have like 6 imps, my cat, Golems and all my zombies/skeletons out at all times and i can never tell when they die because there is almost always too many things on screen to tell. I would like to see a little window tab that lists the pets and their HP like the Mastermind class does in City of Heroes, or at least some kind of coloured outline/glow under your pets so you can tell them apart from the 10-20 other mobs running around on the screen. I was just curious to know if they plan to address this problem for my build/class. 
 
We don’t plan to add any new content at this time, but it’s totally possible someone will mod that in. The ability to summon a lot of minions is certainly a really cool feature and it does get a little crazy, but the only pet manager we really have is for your initial pet, the wolf/lynx choice at the very beginning, which remains onscreen the whole time.
 
Part 2: Another pet question if i can, are they planning to fix the pets path finding capabilities or are they just going to balance the pets always getting stuck/lost into the set? 
 
Again, we aren't planning on significant Torchlight single-player development right now, but more pet control features are on the agenda for the MMO.
 
6. Question:  Will the MMO be using the same setting of Torchlight for all of the games questing, or will it have various cities/towns with their own unique dungeon systems below them?
 
In the MMO, Torchlight will probably be one of many different towns within an overworld. There will be many dungeons, both random and instanced, and outdoor dungeons, as well.
 
Question:  Will there ever be a sequel or expansion pack for the single player Torchlight game in the future, or is all of the companies development time being put into the MMO? If there is an expansion or sequel being made what kind of upgrades might we expect.

Never say never but for now we plan to focus on the MMO. We may release some things that we are also putting into the MMO if we can as extra content, and we’ll also get into alpha and beta in the MMO as soon as possible.
 
Question:  What made you guys decide on the games art style over a more dark or mature style that these type of games are usually set in?

It was a matter of personal style and preference for non-grungy palettes, combined with a desire to not compete with D3. That’s the answer in a nutshell; Art Director Jason Beck wrote pages and pages on how this came about for Gamasutra, and you can read it here:
http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/4123/from_the_ashes_of_mythos_the_art_.php

TV

Bored to Death- Take a Dive, SEASON FINALE: A-. Great ending to a fantastic new series. I love this show as it gave me one of the best first seasons of a show I've ever seen. 
Dexter- Slack Tide: A
Glee- Wheels: A- An amazing episode hampered by a ridiculously dumb plot twist.
South Park- Dances with Smurfs: B
The Office- Murder: A
Survivor- Tastes Like Chicken: A- Fucking Russell...I love you.
Community- Debate 109: B+

Movies

The Assassination of a High School President- B

Next week
Wii Sports Resort
GTA: Episodes from Liberty City
Assassins Creed 2
 
Th-that's all folks! Any questions or comments, post below. Until next time, 

Paalam!  
Online
Posted by DanielJW

Cool post! Kind of sucks to hear most development is heading away from the single-player version of Torchlight, since there's a lot of cool things they could put out in patches, but it's totally understandable. I'm still really excited for the MMO. 
 
I too have a Wii, and I hope you continue to enjoy yours!

Posted by crusader8463

Awesome thanks for asking all those questions of mine. Kind of makes me sad they are going to be leaving patching and what not behind on the single player version. Small companies need to divert their time to whats most important for them though, which sucks for the single player but i understand where they are coming from. It will be interesting to see if a class that can summon all those pets -- the alchemist -- gets put into the MMO, and if they do i hope they take some more time to build a UI that will better support it's play as it is rather unique to the rest of the game.

Posted by RHCPfan24

I really loved the single player campaign to Modern Warfare 2 in the end. My head kind of hurts from all the, well, explosions but I think that is what it is meant to be like. I will definitely agree that the "No Russian" mission was just bad but I still thought it was the  second best campaign of the year, behind Uncharted 2. The story, while all over the place, kept me intrigued and every plot twist was pretty interesting and even unexpected. Seeing some places in ruins (DC) was really shocking and even somewhat emotional. As an American I found some of this imagery disturbing (more than Fallout 3 yes) but it gave me a good motivation to kill the enemy. 
 
I have yet to get into multiplayer for this, but if I enjoyed the campaign this much I am sure to love it.

Posted by JJWeatherman

Cool. Thanks for passing my question along. I'm looking forward to exactly what the classes turn out to be in the MMO.

Posted by Video_Game_King

Assassin's Creed II...oh crap! I forgot! *goes back to work on something*

Posted by TheGamerGeek

Oh I forgot to say The Orphan... B+

Online