Cyber_Goddess's Game Reviews - Page 2 - Myth-Weavers

Notices


Creative Corner

Post your creative works here and show off your talent!


Cyber_Goddess's Game Reviews

   
Quote:
Originally Posted by PPQ_Purple View Post
This all seems to me like the plot lacks actual freedom and that it's just not fantastic overall.
I think, actually, that there is a lot more freedom in FO4 than Skyrim. The factions in Skyrim have no bearing whatsoever on the overall plot of the story. Depending upon your credentials, Tsun will either praise you (Harbinger of the Companions, Dragonborn, or Arch-Mage of the College of Winterhold) or give you crap (Listener of the Dark Brotherhood, Guildmaster of the Thieves Guild) when he confronts you at the Whalebone Bridge. (Oh, and the guards sometimes make smart remarks about who and what you are.) That's it, really. In Skyrim, you save the world. In FO4, you shape the world.

And I say this as someone who really didn't like FO4 all that much but is on their umpteenth playthrough of Skyrim... Mostly cuz Inigo is awesome.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PPQ_Purple View Post
This all seems to me like the plot lacks actual freedom and that it's just not fantastic overall.
Let's just say that most of your dialog options are tone based, and are really just a mean yes, nice yes, sarcastic yes, or a "I'll come back later".

Very few quests in the games actually have multiple endings or ways to do them. With the Secret of the Cabot House possibly being one of the best base-game quests solely based on you having two sides to decide between.

Like I've said, I do not consider the main quest to even be the main appeal of the game. No the main appeal is siding with either Preston or Gage, and carving an empire of either minutemen or raider settlements.

Quote:
Originally Posted by weregeek85 View Post
I think, actually, that there is a lot more freedom in FO4 than Skyrim. The factions in Skyrim have no bearing whatsoever on the overall plot of the story. Depending upon your credentials, Tsun will either praise you (Harbinger of the Companions, Dragonborn, or Arch-Mage of the College of Winterhold) or give you crap (Listener of the Dark Brotherhood, Guildmaster of the Thieves Guild) when he confronts you at the Whalebone Bridge. (Oh, and the guards sometimes make smart remarks about who and what you are.) That's it, really. In Skyrim, you save the world. In FO4, you shape the world.

And I say this as someone who really didn't like FO4 all that much but is on their umpteenth playthrough of Skyrim... Mostly cuz Inigo is awesome.
And we'll get into this discussion in two months after I 100% Skyrim Special Edition.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyber_Goddess View Post
Let's just say that most of your dialog options are tone based, and are really just a mean yes, nice yes, sarcastic yes, or a "I'll come back later".
Isn't that how it goes with most RPGs, though? I honestly am having a hard time thinking of any games where hard "no, I am never going to do this" options are routinely available. Some games have quest timers, I know, where if you don't tell the quest-giver yes within a given window, that quest becomes permanently unavailable, but outright refusals seem to be rare. At least in my experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyber_Goddess View Post
Very few quests in the games actually have multiple endings or ways to do them. With the Secret of the Cabot House possibly being one of the best base-game quests solely based on you having two sides to decide between.
Again, I'm having a difficult time thinking of properly 'open-ended' quests in RPGs. There's always a goal that needs accomplishing and it's your play style that dictates the tactics (guns blazing, stealth and general sneakery, fast talking) used to achieve the goal. I will agree that most quests in FO4 involve wasting people in various creative ways.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyber_Goddess View Post
No the main appeal is siding with either Preston or Gage, and carving an empire of either minutemen or raider settlements.
I hate the Minutemen and Preston. (Never going to buy Nuka World cuz I get RPGs to be a Big Damn Hero, not a Big Bad Evil Guy.) I'm really not very keen on the settlement system, myself. Yeah, it can be kind of fun, but mostly it seems like a lot of busy work to pad out the game and compel you to loot everything that isn't nailed down so it can be turned into something useful.

Honestly I think both of you are confusing how video game RPGs work.

Video game RPG's are not like what we do here on the forum. They are not about having freedom or actual realistic choice to shape how events unfold. This is simply not practical from a functional perspective and it's just not how the storytelling method works. They are much closer to being an interactive movie or book that you go through. The story and its major plot points are, and should be, predefined and out of your control.

Sure you might get a couple different endings and some differences left and right but those are not the point of the game. Rather, what they are and indeed what every choice in such a game, be that a dialog option or stat building preference, are is tools. Tools the developers use to make us as players more immersed in the experience they are there to make us care about the character and to allow us to interpret the game and characters from different perspectives.

So what sets a good vs a bad RPG apart is not how much freedom you have about changing the plot but how that plot stands up to examination. And in particular how much of that plot makes sense when viewed from every possible angle. How much they make us feel that those options that are in the game really are all that there should be.

That's why I reacted negatively to C_G's example. That's a clear situation where the plot does not make sense when observed and make you want for options that aren't there not because of some arbitrary desire for random derailment but because they would make narrative sense.

Let me put it this way.

Take for example the quest G.I Blues in Fallout: New Vegas.

There are multiple ways to handle many parts of the quest. Dealing with the bodyguard can be solved by an intelligence check, a medicine check, or simply attacking the 'corpses'. And there is arguably no 'right' answer to dealing with the missionaries, because if you're doing a Mr. House run you arguably want the Kings and the NCR to hate each other so House doesn't wipe them out in the ending.

However in my 250 hours of Fallout 4, I literally only saw one stat check in any quest that wasn't a charisma check. Which was the +7 intelligence check to sabotage the decontamination arches in the Children of Atom quest. Almost every charisma check also usually just means extra caps too, rather than actually changing the quest. With there being very rare exceptions, for example the "Speak as Shroud" option, during the Silver Shroud quest.

The exception to this, as always again, was Nuka World and Far Harbor. Where there are multiple ways to handle almost every park. In the galactic zone, you can find the Star Cores instead of destroying all the robots, the Western World allows you to use the "Robotics Expert" perk to skip quest objectives, in the Safari zone you could use charisma to get an extra weapon from Cito and convince him to walk away rather than having to kill him, and in the Kiddie Land, you actually with exploration could actually skip the boss fight with a dialog option or finding the right holotape. Far Harbor actually has some options like that as well, where there's quests that change whether you decide to lie about a monster fight, a quest that allows you to the use the Medic perk to heal a person with your own skill from a disease, and of course the intelligence check to repair the arches.

In the Base game however, I've been told there is only one quest that has stat checks, "The Last Voyage of the U.S.S Constitution." Where you can repair the ship with your own skill, rather than going to places, clearing them out, and returning with part X.

It's not that in the base game that you can't actually say no to a quest. It's that almost every single quest has literally one way to solve it. Go here, Kill a group of enemies, return with item X or covered in blood to prove you did it. Almost no quest in the base game is effected by how you built your character outside of how effective you can kill the enemies, or the rare charisma check that does something besides give extra money.

The sole possible exception to this being the Main Quest, where if you give Mama Murphy drugs she'll give you special dialog options that let you skip fights....but this raises so many other questions about the nature of Mama Murphy, because if you use a speech check to get her to kick her habit, she'll lose the ability to see in the future, which quite frankly is not how psychic powers work in Fallout. Apparently all you need to do to get psychic powers in Fallout now is to take a ton of drugs and get lucky with how they affect your system, because she does lose the ability if you get her to kick her habit.

I guess that wording it as a "yes, yes, or sarcastic yes" was a bad way to put it, but the main thing, is that you will never have a conversation in 99% of Fallout 4 where your character build means anything outside of how high your charisma is. Outside of Far Harbor you can never use the medic perk to heal someone who's injured, outside of Nuka World you can never use a perk like Robotic Expert to skip a fight with a robot or get advantages in Dialog when talking to robot NPCs, and outside of the rare intelligence check to fix machinery in the U.S.S Constitution or Decontamination Arches, I never saw a stat check that wasn't Charisma. No using Strength to Intimidate people, no using Perception to figure out someone is lying, no using Luck to guess random Passwords or Perform Brain Surgery, and so on. I don't think I ever saw anything resembling a 'barter' check either, which is weird with the cap collector and local leader perks being a thing. You could never get an advantage in dialog based on how good you were with money. I'll take the Black Widow perk on my third playthrough and check out around the game, but I'll be legit surprised if there's actually dialog options that let you use your seduction skills to skip fights or get around quests. See: Sleeping with Benny in Fallout: New Vegas or any of other sex dialog options from the 4 seduction perks in New Vegas. Yes the perk says that "men will be easier to convince", but I'm almost certain that just means charisma checks are easier rather than new dialog options outright. Hell now that I think about it, I don't think even with a Maxed out level 4 Science perk, I ever had a single dialog option during the Institute or Brotherhood of Steel interactions where I got to show off the fact that, you know, my character can build a fusion generator out of scrap and such. Compare that to Old World Blues, where I'm pretty sure half the dialog options in that DLC are some variant of science, medicine, or repair check.

I'm just saying, that if you play Fallout 4. The radiant quests, and the actual side quests, are very similar. Rare is the actual side quest that has choices or various ways to conclude them, i.e Multiple Factions fighting over an object, or various ways to solve the quest based on how you built your character. They're almost always that three phase cycle, Go to place X, Wipe out a Group of Enemies at Place X, Come back to the Quest giver.

It's almost like an MMORPG like World of Warcraft rather than anything resembling an actual RPG. This is beyond the scope of this discussion and I'd really rather not get into another argument about what "qualifies" as an 'RPG' (Goddess knows we've had this debate on the discord millions of times), but let's just say that the Quests are heavily hurting for options in how you do them in general, and the only thing that separates most actual side quests from the Radiant quests in terms of quest design is the fact that you can only do the 'actual side quests' one time rather than multiple, and your rewards take the form of unique items rather than just money. For example, the side quest where you recruit Strong, which boils down to "go the tower, fight your way up the tower, then ride your way down the tower to safety", and your reward is a unique dress and Strong as a companion rather than the actor simply giving you caps and the two of them walking off. Compare that to a minuteman kidnapping radiant quests where you....go to the location where the kidnapped settler is, fight your way through the raiders or super mutants to the kidnapped settler and then escort the settler to safety. Literally the only difference in how you handle the actual side quest versus the radiant quest is the fact that you can only do the Trinity Tower Quest one time, and the reward is something other than money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyber_Goddess View Post
You see prior to playing New Vegas, I had some.....harsh, views on post apocalypse stories. With me mostly viewing them as one of two things, either a teenager tough guy power fantasy slash anarchist wet dream where there is no law and you can hunt down that guy you hated from high school and murder him without anyone able to stop you, or a dystopian future novel which is mostly used to play a straw-man political ideology in charge of the evil ruler-ship so we can show how flawed their politics are, with the leadership of the evil empire thingy being nothing more than a straw version of what we the author hate in terms of politics.

New Vegas is neither one of these, and as far as I can tell, very little of the Fallout franchise is. Since playing Fallout: New Vegas, I went on a binge of all the Fallout reviews and media I could find, and came to a conclusion. In my opinion the theme of the Fallout series is “rebirth of the new world”, so to speak. Fallout, behind all it's black comedy and humour, is ultimately a series where yes the people of the world are actually trying to rebuild society.
I wanted to pull this out and comment on it, this is really what pretty much any decent PA story is trying to do (and even quite a few of the bad ones, it's just that their idea of society is often, uhm, shall we say, less than ideal).

Even the rah, rah, go go Super Survivalists garbage that's mostly about killing lots of thinly disguised strawmen wants to rebuild society. Perhaps in a form that would make most of us want to overthrow it and go back to chaos, but definitely rebuilt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyber_Goddess View Post
Let me put it this way.
In other words what I said but in several hundreds of words more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PPQ_Purple View Post
In other words what I said but in several hundreds of words more.
Yes, but I also wanted to not just talk about RPGs in general, but go into detail about why the game I was reviewing specifically failed in that aspect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyber_Goddess View Post
Yes, but I also wanted to not just talk about RPGs in general, but go into detail about why the game I was reviewing specifically failed in that aspect.
Was just making sure. Always have to when you meet a wall of text.

This said, I would generally appreciate if you used paragraphs more often. Like for example, every time you bring a new thought forward that should be a new paragraph. But also every time you have a long and detailed example for a thought.
And even when not, it would be nice if you broke things up with new lines without a paragraph breaking white line from time to time like I did just now. Basically t'would help make it a lot more readable.

I'll try to format better in the future. Key word try. I haven't taken a course on proper essay format in about a decade.







 

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Last Database Backup 2018-11-18 09:00:11am local time
Myth-Weavers Status