My only gripe

 
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iamyum-tse
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Joined: 24 Jul 2007
Posts: 19

PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 2:38 pm    Post subject: My only gripe Reply with quote
This is definitely an excellent sequel to TSE1. It's obvious that a lot of thoughts are placed in balancing, enhancing the battle engine, the story, and the dialogs. Quite a bit of positive feedback is already on the forum. My one and only downer is that besides Kaltos, Mericious, and Ferwin, the other 6 characters seem to have no significant character-specific events within the game. Each has awesome dialogs for sure, but these 6 characters seem to have nothing that changes the behavior of the game (eg. Mericious has an extra challenging battle, Kaltos has a sword [though probably not the best sword in the game], and Ferwin gains an ally for a chapter). I used to enjoy this a lot while selecting characters in TSE1 when each of them has some specific things that affect the game. Father's rifle, settling an old rift (like actually one-on-one fighting, unlike Ionae's pure talk), skill boosting plot lines, etc.

Perhaps somehow I missed these for these 6 characters in TSE2?
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Mark Pay
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Joined: 09 Aug 2006
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Location: Margate, UK

PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Partly this was done to save time. With all the unique character graphics, dialogue and cutscenes over a longer game, there is already considerably more character-specific content in TSE2 than TSE1. But you are correct that those are the only 3 instances which affect gameplay.

I didn't think there was any point in giving specific skill points while the new refund system was there, or in weighting skills for characters, since this discouraged skill choice.

There are also a lot more items in the game than TSE1 ( and a lot that are still unactivated ), so I wasn't too worried about the lack of character-specific items.

I didn't like the 1-character battles in TSE1. I think they would have been more fun with the updated battle system, but not fun enough.

Ultimately it would have been nice to include more character specific gameplay, but I had to set restrictions to get the game finished, and these were ruled out early on.
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iamyum-tse
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Joined: 24 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Ar, that's right, the refund system does make giving skill-specific points meaningless.

There are indeed a lot more items than in TSE1. Though character specific-items that are strong enough to last till the end of the game does make the game more fun. BTW, what are these unactivated items that you speak of?

Ultimately, you are absolutely correct that you have to make a choice so that the game gets finishes. I suppose the only changes I can think of are battles, items, and allies. For instance, Ionae can actually enter a (1-1?) fight with her old "friend", Charlotte can get an extra item from her past patrons, Pyan Pau Sai get something from his friend in town, Enshadu do a fight with the other enshadu, and so on. OK, I admit, I love fights, and Mericious's fight is well done.

I loved the 1-person battles in TSE1, especially the 1-on-3 battle in middle of part 4. The first time I entered the battle I couldn't stop admiring and enjoying the climax you put us through. Actually I was thinking a variation of that to be one-character has to hold up for a while before the second/third character catches up and enter the battle. Just a thought.

Overall, I am thoroughly happy to have purchased this game. It's just a minor gripe, and the game is awesome in all other aspects.
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Brickman
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Joined: 13 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
You're totally wrong, there is a character specific battle for every character! It's located in chapter eight, right before Ick Thelloth, and it's different for every party!
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Mark Pay
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2008 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I agree iamyum, it would have been nice. The work was just too much. Mericious's fight probably took about a week and a half to implement, from assets to coding and tweaking and testing. Add another 8 of those and it's 3+ months of development time.

I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed the 1v1 fight in TSE1 though! I never really got any feedback on it before, and my own thoughts on it were fairly negative.

I hadn't thought about the hallucination fight Brickman. Perhaps those half-count. Wink

Quote:
There are indeed a lot more items than in TSE1. Though character specific-items that are strong enough to last till the end of the game does make the game more fun. BTW, what are these unactivated items that you speak of?


The unimplemented items can be seen using the item viewer linked in http://www.thespiritengine.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=197
There were originally more character-specific items ( see the character restriction option ) but these were left out of the game or made generic.
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Brickman
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2008 11:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I thought one on TWO (no idea where you got three) battle at the climax of chapter four of TSE1 was quite cool, and since all three "slot one" characters had their bonuses on useful attack skills and in fact had penalties to the skills which just happened to not be useful there, it probably wasn't too much of a stopping point for anyone. Samuel's was even cooler thematically, as it was more defensive-oriented, but since neither of samuel's "bonus" skills is an attack it was possible to screw yourself over (in fact, that's what I did my first run with him; that's what made it so fun, as I excelled at recover but had only an underleveled magic bullet to attack with and the boss attacked slowly but could also heal himself; that was quite a long battle). In this game, I REALLY expected Mericious's unique battle to be a solo fight, and was shocked that it wasn't (actually, to be perfectly honest, at the time I was SHOCKED that it was a battle at all, as attacking members of the inquisition seemed incredibly irrational when he could have just defiantly walked around them).
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TwiTerror
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Joined: 17 Aug 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 11:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Walking around people doesn't solve problems, it makes them worse (;
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iamyum-tse
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Joined: 24 Jul 2007
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 1:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I didn't know it takes a week to game balance a boss fight. Afterall I don't have game-design experience and cannot adequately appreciate the thought involved in seemingly "simple" add-ons. Gripe is probably too strong of a negative comment. Probably "wish" is more appropriate.

Ok it was a 1 on 2 battle, but technically the "third" enemy is there but he's automatically shot dead by the first player. That particular climax was handled extremely well. Even though I lost the battle the first time going through, I couldn't blame you since you have warned us against it. Then when I succeeded in knocking out those two pests, the joy was immense.

Anyways, both TSE1 and TSE2 are very enjoyable.
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Mark Pay
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2008 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I hope I haven't been too grumpy or defensive in my explanation. Smile

When players have a legitimate concern with the game that I cannot fix, I feel that I owe it to them and to myself to explain the rationale behind the design decisions that created the situation.

Every human endeavour is constrained by time ( accepting also that time = money Wink ) and for such sequences the combined requirements for script, art, coding, sound fx selection ( takes a lot longer than you might think! ), testing, balancing and music where required easily run into 60-80+ hours ( at a guess ) It's all very time consuming work, and with time as a precious resource, you have to spend it where you think you can get the best results. If you somehow have unlimited time, you end up with something like Duke Nukem Forever. Wink

Any criticisms are much more helpful for future projects than praise, so I welcome them happily! Very Happy
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TwiTerror
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2008 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Code-monkeys are often mistakenly considered the only monkeys. We also have music-monkeys.
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