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Posted by BigPenguin

This was an awesome jar time. Really liking what you do definitely shows.

Posted by theveej

@FulgoreSenpai said:

@Tennmuerti said:

The thing about the option of skipping combat is that it does actually affect people that do not choose to use it.

How so?

Because by incorporating such an option to skip combat is by default affecting how those designing the game think about combat/story structure. By having such an option there they are either already going in with a mindset to keep the two seperate or at the very least making sure that they can seperate the 2 easily.

Think about how ME2-3 is structured. No exploration, get to mission start, go through linear mission combat, at the end story (sometimes a few bits of story in the middle). It's incredibly simplistic and is what gives some people the feeling that the game is more of a linear shooter. Not arguing wheather or not it's a bad thing here. I know ME2 did not have said option but it would fit in perfectly well.

Compare this to say the way ME1 was designed, landing on planets, huge amounts of exploration, it would be much harder for them to have a "skip combat" option as combat frequantly happens in an open way by itself while exploring rather then in preset controlled corridors. Or say the way DA:O is, where combat is weaved much more tighly into the narative. Plenty of combat scenarios become iconic narative moments, the stand against the constant stream of zombie hordes to protect a village with the defenders you helped organised, the fight against the final boss. What if you skipped those moments? You would actually loose a lot fo the narative and it's punch.

In order for the "skip combat" option to be available in those games they would actually have to be changed in the way they were designed at a fundamental level in order to create a much more clear cut seperationbetween combat/story. Some of yours and mine most beloved games are made in such ways where designers masterfully mesh the two aspects together. Hell it does not even have to be directly story, think of God of war and how it would have to be changed if the designers had to come up with a way to seperate it's story moments from it's combat moments.

So what's the point of all this i'm rambling about above?

The point is that the inclusion of such an option is either only possible in games that already have a clearer seperation of the 2 concepts or provisions have to be made for it. Therefore yes inclusion of "skip combat" does actually affect people who do not even have to use it. It affects what kind of game is available to them.

Personaly I would rather games go in the direction of masterfully meshing story and combat (or any gameplay for that matter) together rather then segregating the two. Is it selfish to want gaming to cater to my interests? Most assuredly. But that does not make it invalid for me to care, we all want games to be more of what we want after all.

PS: (just in case some people get this ridiculous notion of me saying: "such option makes developers go, durrrrr we now have to make our game different", this is not what i'm saying at all and you would have completely missed the point)

i give this essay a 3/4.

nah more of a 3.125/4 to me

Posted by RazielCuts

Jeff talking about people crossing over from reviews to development side of things around the 1 hr mark just makes me think, how come Jeff and Carrie never got it together? It was so obvious.

Posted by Tennmuerti

@theveej: @FulgoreSenpai: You guys have reeeealy weird marking scales. But thank you! I think? Yeah!

Posted by Dimpley

Double Brad.

Apply directly to the forehead.

Posted by SaturdayNightSpecials

@gladspooky said:

@SaturdayNightSpecials said:

What he's saying about the new Gamespot writers being more "flowery" definitely seems to hold true there today. They write their reviews like highbrow criticism, not like purchasing advice, but ultimately they don't really say anything more profound about the game than a Giant Bomb review does.

The decks are particularly bad. I always cringe at how many polysyllabic adjectives they try to cram into one sentence. "Killer storytelling and creative demon slaying make the haunting Alan Wake one for the books." Like give me a break.

Brad Shoemaker: "At the same time, it feels like Japan embracing what Japan does best, tying together strong art design, passionate storytelling, and a decades-long tradition of high-flying action starring larger-than-life mythical figures."

Ryan Davis: "The substance of the game's profundity is wide open to debate, but it's never too overbearing about it, and there's something to be said for trying to divine the creator's intent from the thousands of swirling, flat-shaded cubes currently undulating across your screen."

Alex Navarro: "With its cubic art style and cheerful obliteration of the world around you, all at the whim of a gigantic, self-obsessed royal dandy, nothing about Katamari Damacy screams "mass audience appeal.""

These took about two minutes to find. Couldn't find one for Jeff, oddly.

Those aren't decks, if that's what you were addressing. These are decks.

"Syndicate gives you a great set of tools that make shooting at the world around you a lot of fun whether you're playing alone or with a team."

"Digital Extremes ably picks up where Starbreeze left off, crafting a satisfyingly brutal adventure that only rarely loses its way."

"Viewed as a handheld game, Revelations is impressive enough, but in the long history of the Resident Evil series, it's just average."

And cherry-picking the most verbose parts of a few reviews doesn't prove anything. The problem with Gamespot isn't that they sometimes have flowery writing, it's that most of their writers never break from that tone. You would never read something like this in a GS review.

"For story-related reasons, the game at least does a good job of mixing up the rare moments of gameplay by leaning more heavily on shooting in the last third, where you'll be taking down multiple targets with the sort of lock-on shooting for which Panzer Dragoon has become the obvious shorthand. While I'm getting all referential, there's more than a tinge of Space Harrier in those late-game shooting sequences as well, when you start running or flying forward at a zillion miles an hour through spaceship corridors and galactic fleets, dodging obstacles and shooting down bad robots."

Posted by PillClinton

@killer_cat said:

And I like what You guys do too, Jeff! :D

Posted by jred250

Jar Time is the best video series on Whiskey.

Feel better soon, Jeff!

Posted by Zachariahus

This feature is so strange to me, but I love it.

Posted by HerbieBug

oh geez Jeff don't wave knives at the camera like that. Scared the willies out of me. o___o

Posted by chikin_n_rofls

8.8 at 45:18

Edited by theveej

@Tennmuerti: lol, in high school my english teacher used to give out marks out of 4..... 1 year she went nuts and the scale changed to out of 6 (one time i got 5,125 / 6 ...... i was like what are you smoking u crazy old lady)

On another note, "I have a need for Speed" part made my day/weekend/week/ month

Also I think generalizing the whole skipping combat or story debate is really dependent on a case on case basis. I think for ME it is totally acceptable, same as Assura Wrath. Although I do think making the combat auto play is a better way to do it (imagine going the route of automatic combat, and u basically get a cut scene with ur character owning it up based on the game combat mechanism, kind of like in fighting games when u wait too long on the start screen)

For the other games, im not so sure that it would be acceptable to skip story/gameplay

Posted by zeekthegeek

Jar time is the best time. My first day on Subscription and I'm pretty happy with it.

Posted by tread311

Gaming on 3G is actually not that crazy. I have played Battlefield 3 and other games online tethered to my phone. Performance is usually fine and it doesn't actually use that much bandwidth. It's not going to fly with absurd 250mb plans, but 1gb or so would handle a month of gaming fine.

Posted by sir_package_boy

Has anyone ever stripped the audio out of these videos and uploaded them? I can't spend a hour and a half straight watching a video like this, but if it was a podcast I'd have no problem. Has anyone done this yet, or am I the first one to think of it?

Edited by paulunga

On the Vita and 3G: The Vita has a wireless chip that supports HSPA+. In Japan it runs on HSPA+, which offers with 14.4 Mbps. That's easily enough for actual online gaming. AT&T probably only provides HSPA in the states which should be enough THEORETICALLY. But in reality, yeah, you're fucked on that one. Here in Germany the Vita doesn't have a SIM Lock and should be compatible to Telekom's 42 Mbps HSPA+ service (though not using the full bandwidth).

I HAVE NO IDEA WHY THEY'RE NOT MAKING A BIGGER DEAL OUT OF THIS! The Vita should be absolutely capable of playing games online through 3G, but most consumers are either misinformed or not informed at all. It is completely mindboggling to me.

Posted by Ganty

Pocari sweat isn't carbonated Jeff! What the HECK. And It tastes worse than Aquarius.

Edited by Ariketh

A skip button for combat would be weird, but it would make replaying games in Mass Effect a lot faster and easier, and maybe it'd give someone more value. If there is no dialogue wheel and you're just watching cutscreens, that would be odd, but to each their own. It would be fun to be able to share a story with people who don't normally play games, like a girlfriend who wants to watch, but has no idea how to play. She could, as a result, understand better why someone enjoys games, since it's in a format that is a bit more similar to an interactive book, rather than requiring so much skill.

Posted by Y2Ken

Cheers Jeff. Another scorcher. =)

Posted by Lucri

I love what the Giantbomb crew is doing, it's entertaining, informative, and the guys are awesome and hilarious. :D

Edited by Ooame

I don't have a facebook its not because i think i'm cool its just because i don't have any friends.

Posted by FluxWaveZ

@Ooame said:

I don't have a facebook its not because i think i'm cool its just because i don't have any friends.

Hear, hear.

Posted by Rhaknar

who DOESNT desire double Brad, that's what I wanna know

Posted by subyman

I just got over a weekend sickness. No fun at all. Thanks for the QandA, great way to pass time during the flu.

Edited by pyromagnestir

I used to stop playing games I was really enjoying near the end of the game, and the reason I did it was that I was not ready to be "done" a game I was enjoying. I don't replay games often, so there is a finality to beating a game that means I'm never gonna play this game again. When I really like the game that can make me a little sad, so sometimes I'd just stop playing it, so that I wouldn't be finished with it. I'd usually go back and wrap it up later though.

Does that make any sense? I doubt it. Achievements have mostly cured me of this, because they give me small goals to accomplish after I finish the game if I still want to play it.

Edited by Paddles

I think the skip gameplay/combat option is a good one I would like to see in some games, but not necessarily most games. In many ways it's just a more integrated version of 'Watch Cutscenes' option of a menu in games past.

It has just occurred to me that there are existing analogs of this in games anyway where it makes sense. The obvious one is in sports games. If I play a season with a team in say NBA 2K12, I can choose to play a game in the schedule myself or I can let the game the decide the outcome based on the teams playing, season record etc. Also it is often in RTS/TBS games. For instance Dawn of War: Dark Crusade/Soulstorm has an over world of territories (like Risk say) and you can choose whether to play the actual RTS game when you attack or defend a territory or let the game using statistics of the armies/bases to evaluate it for you.

Whats new here is that ME3 has introduced the philosophy (or similar) to Action/Adventure/RPG games. I think only a few rather than most could pull it off with some degree of sense and effectiveness and still be of some degree of game or have interactivity (at least with way games are made now), games with large dialog options/scenes and cutscenes and maybe 'on rail' gameplay parts. At this point I can only thinks of the Bioware games and similar (say Alpha Protocol), and maybe games like a Deus Ex game that could pull this off with any kind of interactivity. I suppose you could take out just combat for games like Uncharted but i think there are also too few games where that you could do that to as well and have something interactive left. Most other games would be just watching cutscenes (on a sidenote I would like this just as a menu option to show and include ingame/inlevel cutscenes, but thinking about it I could just watch a montage youtube video) or making two separate games. Valves games are a great instance of how action and story are so integrated and couldn't have separation.

I respect the "artists intent" argument and agree that if a game is created to be played a certain way that it should be presented as such. However, I also respect that there could be "artists intent" in giving options of gameplay, both as creative motivations and business/accessibility ones. Basically it comes down to the fact I want an options like this where it makes sense, is thoughtful and intended as a legitimate option, and I am sure myself, other game players (whatever degree of gamer that maybe), the community and the various forms of game journalism will figure out when it is and isn't.

Also, as gamers I think we worry too much, and this stuff also shows that gaming and games are still figuring themselves out with the exponential complexity of any other medium.

Edited by HerbieBug

Just a quick chime in on the combat skip topic:

For me that just comes down to design philosophy as far how broad of an audience you wish to appeal to with your game. It's a risky proposition setting out to make a game that is everything to everyone, probably an impossible one. You'll alienate a certain contingent of your fan base no matter what you do in this regard. If there's demand for games like Asura's Wrath, maybe the way to go is to just make more minimally interactive games specifically targeting the audience that wants them, as opposed to adding skip functionality to traditional gameplay focused games. I don't want to see a Mass Effect game with skip-dialogue and skip-combat functionality. However, if Bioware were to make a game in that universe that is a dedicated interactive cutscene like Asura's wrath, that's something I would support if not necessarily purchase for myself.

The fear from your dedicated video game fans is that adding skip functionality will lead to further simplification of the aspects of games that they love in the first place. There is also concern about continuing down the path of the Uncharted games, where players increasingly have control being yanked away from them by the game just so the developer can ensure that a specific series of events happens in the specific way that they want it to happen.

I think perhaps the answer is to create a whole new genre. Japan has its dating sim games, we might as well have an equivalent here in the west. Story based experiences with only passively interactive player control. I'll tell you right now, there's an untapped market for that in the west that things like motion control only scratches the surface of.

Posted by DrWhat


Posted by slayergnome

This is probably a dumb question, but is he drinking moonshine?

Posted by InfamousBIG

@slayergnome said:

This is probably a dumb question, but is he drinking moonshine?

That's all Jeff drinks, he's like Mad Men on steroids.

Edited by BluPotato

In reguards to Killzone3, I really like the idea of f2p to a small purchase for mp. I think thats an actually good move and should be a trend in the industry.

I had no interest in Killzone but I'll probably pony up the $15 for a online play pass.

Posted by Jimbo7676

@slayergnome: LOL, It is just water. Moonshine is disgusting. You would see his reaction if that was it.

Posted by Godmil

OMG I'm just like the guy who asked the question about finishing games. There are so many games that I get just to the end and for some reason then forget about them. Quite relieved to know other people do that too.

Posted by JayHayabusa

Love Jeff's honesty about 'writing as a creative outlet'.

Posted by oneidwille

@sir_package_boy said:

Has anyone ever stripped the audio out of these videos and uploaded them? I can't spend a hour and a half straight watching a video like this, but if it was a podcast I'd have no problem. Has anyone done this yet, or am I the first one to think of it?

i think part of the reason, is this is paid for content. That's probably why its isn't available outside of this site (maybe it is, but why?) I could see Jeff, Vinny, whoever, possibly doing that, but this already exists, and if someone were to download it, there are a crap-ton of tutorials online that instruct you on how to do that, for your purposes.

Posted by Jared

These videos are always great to watch, very informative! Thanks Jeff!

Posted by AllanIceman

Looking at this now, knowing what was happing to Whiskey Media at this moment, it's pretty crazy.

Edited by Phished0ne