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Default Deus Ex 3 - Eidos: DX3 is an RPG

October 5th, 2008, 09:59
Eidos has hit back at the disquiet on several discussion boards, with the community manager firing off the message to VoodooExtreme that Deus Ex 3 is an RPG:
Deus Ex 3 is indeed an RPG. It's a hybrid action/RPG just like the first game. There is a skill system where you upgrade your character (Adam) based off experience points you earn and you can do the same thing with weapons. It's a game with a very detailed plot with numerous characters you interact with. The gameplay takes the form of a consequence-driven multi-path, multi-solution approach in a non-linear space.
For stealth, that is another major pillar of gameplay and we do have it. The difference is that it's now cover-based rather than "shadow/light-based" as in the past games.
More information.
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October 5th, 2008, 09:59
I would like to use some prophetic power like everyone else seems to do, but for me, there is far too few information to make any judgement on the game yet. I can say this in regard to the information we do have:

That hits are determined purely by player skill instead of stats I actually like. How realistic is it when your aim is shaking over one third of the screen with an assault rifle while you are perfectly steady with a pistol? Assuming the avatar is some kind of soldier or agent, he or she should be expected to have a steady aim. Also, action game elements do not necessarily diminish the roleplaying value of a game for me.

Cover based stealth sounds like an improvement over shadow based, but I do not know enough about it. I assume that the level of light is still important under this system; ideally, both shadows and cover would be taken into account.

Autohealing can be both a blessing and a curse. As a fallback combined with a sufficient supply of medpacks or in a game where you can realistically complete a mission without losing 100% of your health it is a cool bonus. Otherwise it tends to inject a game with boring idle time.

But what prevented me from buying Deus Ex 2: IW?

The small ingame areas come to mind, the frequent loading times as a result and the terrible inventory management system which probably lead to unified ammo. Unfortunately for the game, these limitations were quite obvious even in the demo.

They were also clearly limitations imposed by consoles, and as a PC gamer, it is difficult for me to neglect them. Some are lifted in the current generation of consoles, but others are not: the console type inventory system made selling items hell and was a major detraction for me in the case of the otherwise excellent Mass Effect, for example.

Whether Deus Ex 3 will classify as a roleplaying game will really be determined by the storytelling, the non-linearity both in- and outside of missions and the ability to improve my avatar during the course of the game for me.
Last edited by coyote; October 5th, 2008 at 10:19.
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October 5th, 2008, 11:13
What "RPG" means have changed quite a bit lately. We live in an era now in which many games have skill systems as a game mechanic, just because they are fun. Four examples; Sims always had a skill system. No One Lives Forever 2 did as well. Warcraft III had RPG mechanics. Finally fightinggames such as Fight Night and Def Jam did as well.

We also have more choices these days. Many games try to give you freedom to play the game in your own way. Free roaming is popular and can be seen in games like Far Cry, Crysis, Grand Theft Auto, S.T.A.L.K.E.R etc.

When it was originally released, there was a debate if Deus Ex really was an RPG. Combining FPS with RPG mechanics had been tried before but Deus Ex also became one of the most popular games out there which became a reference for future games, something to compare with if another developer tried the same combo.

Then there's the games that really had a strong focus on RPG mechanics but didn't felt like RPG's at all… such as Diablo, Sacred and Titan Quest.

I have skipped loads of "RPG's" lately. I never really bothered to check them out because I knew they wouldn't offer what I like.

So the question for me today is what I really enjoy to play and if a game have it or not. I'll keep my thumbs up for Deus Ex 3. If it's anything like Deus Ex it's a must for me. While I agree that Invisible War was a step down, I still found the game enjoyable enough to complete.
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October 5th, 2008, 11:20
Originally Posted by coyote View Post
How realistic is it when your aim is shaking over one third of the screen with an assault rifle while you are perfectly steady with a pistol?
I don't think that you've understood the weight mechanisms of weapons.

My weapon experience is actually very limited, but what I can say for sure is that the "overweight" on the "long distance" of a rifle is what makes the "shaking".

In better words, meanwhile the weight of a pistol is limited to a rather limited and "short" spot (an pistol is rather short compared to a rifle),

the weight of a rifle is dispersed along a long bar of metal and wood.

The points nearer to your own body are firm - that's why it is so with the pistol - but the points far away from the body need a constand shifting of the muscles to hold them right.

Meanwhile we are nrmally used to pick up and hold things that are close to the body - a mug, let's say - we are normally *not* used to pick up and hold upright things like a hayfork.

From the longth-weight point of view, a hayfork is similar to a rifle, but different, too.

A hayfork has its actual "heavy" weight at the end, whereas the rifle has it distributed along the long bar of metal & wood. From this point of view, holding a hayfork upright and straight is on the one hand more difficult (especially for the untrained) and easier (once you know how it's done), because if the "right" muscles you need for it.

Especially untrained people will have difficulties to use "the right muscles" in their arms to hold a rifle upright, because they have not trained muscles they need for this.
For experienced rifle-users, this is easier, because of the training of the right muscles.

"Pin-pointing" towards a target with a rifle is like pointing with a heavy needle towards it, in my eyes. The handle of it will be steady and firm ('cause it's close to the body), but the very end of the "needle" is zig-zagging because it IS the very end. This requires and considerable amount of fine tuning with your muscles, which is only achieved during training.
Especially this fine tuning makes it so difficult.

In a way it can be compared to painting miniatures: Some people have perfectly still hands for that,
others don't. I don't have 'em.

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October 5th, 2008, 11:55
Originally Posted by coyote View Post
How realistic is it when your aim is shaking over one third of the screen with an assault rifle while you are perfectly steady with a pistol?
About as realistic as a nano-augmented clone fighting terrorists in a distopian future.
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October 5th, 2008, 12:12
Originally Posted by coyote View Post
I would like to use some prophetic power like everyone else seems to do, but for me, there is far too few information to make any judgement on the game yet.
It's not final judgment - just some opinions, in the same way you think player skill is a good thing. Right? Some of us are cynical because of history. When a game producer says "we understand why DX:IW failed", implying they will honour the original gameplay…and then lists a raft of changes to features we liked, what else would you expect?

That hits are determined purely by player skill instead of stats I actually like. How realistic is it when your aim is shaking over one third of the screen with an assault rifle while you are perfectly steady with a pistol? Assuming the avatar is some kind of soldier or agent, he or she should be expected to have a steady aim. Also, action game elements do not necessarily diminish the roleplaying value of a game for me.
I agree that action elements aren't inherently bad but I don't give two hoots about realism. Here's why it's a bad thing: it removes a roleplaying choice. Under the original system, you had to choose whether to put points into a weapon or elsewhere - sometimes you had to compromise. Maybe I had to choose to let hacking go because I wanted to put points into sniper rifles and stealth and just couldn't do it all. Under a player skill system, that choice is simplified because everyone automatically has a certain prowess in fighting.

It's also likely to change the balance and scenario design. DX had to assume you might approach scenarios in different ways - after all, you may not have developed weapons much at all. I'll bet DX3 plays more like a "standard" shooter, because they can assume your FPS skills are available in every situation. You know what other game did this? DX:IW.

Cover based stealth sounds like an improvement over shadow based, but I do not know enough about it. I assume that the level of light is still important under this system; ideally, both shadows and cover would be taken into account.
Well, none of use know exactly what the system is but the assumption everywhere has been a Gears of War (or Mass Effect) - like cover system. In other words - no real stealth, just hiding from direct fire. Time will tell but if shadows were still relevant, why would they even mention this? Wouldn't they say that stealth had been strengthened, or similar language? Pointing out it's "cover based" rather than "light based" seems to suggest shadows have been dropped. More information is definitely required.

We'll see.

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October 5th, 2008, 13:41
I really like the answers in this thread; they made me rethink a few of my positions. Thanks to everyone.

Just a few comments on the aiming part:

I see your point, Alrik. I have been in the army for the compulsory nine months, though, and must say that you do not hold a pistol very close to your head, either, but pretty much straight away from you. From my experience, while there certainly is a difference between holding a rifle and a pistol, most people are either good with both or neither, even if there are smaller deviations in marksman skill between both weapons.

Regarding realism, it might be overrated as Rizzla points out: I would not say that nano-augmented agents are as unrealistic as skillbased shooting in a science fiction setting, but bottomless inventories and medpacks certainly are.

In the end it boils down to a different question, which is where I find Dhruin quite convincing: which of those mechanisms is more fun to play and which is more likely to be implemented given the information we have.

When it comes to quests/missions, while I still feel that skillbased combat tends to make it feel sluggish and out of control, taking away from the fun derived from it, I certainly prefer to be able to choose between several viable approaches, including non-violent ones, over having a more direct control over a weapon. Unfortunately, the implementation of shooter style combat does make a level design including alternative/non-violent solutions less likely, since it is not required anymore in order to accomodate all types of skillsets. Let's see what Eidos meant when they say 'multi-solution approach'.

I would not really miss a choice of weapon skills during skill selection when there are other skills around which significantly impact gameplay, however. In particular in a cyberpunk setting finding interesting skills should not be difficult, but it depends on funds, time and the creativity of the game designers, I guess.
Last edited by coyote; October 6th, 2008 at 08:49.
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October 5th, 2008, 22:16
Originally Posted by coyote View Post
I see your point, Alrik. I have been in the army for the compulsory nine months, though, and must say that you do not hold a pistol very close to your head, either, but pretty much straight away from you. From my experience, while there certainly is a difference between holding a rifle and a pistol, most people are either good with both or neither, even if there are smaller deviations in marksman skill between both weapons.
Then you have much more experience with it than I have.

I have been shooting as a teenager for a few days as kind of a training during the summer vacation time in a what my dictionary calls a "shooting club" with an airgun/air rifle.

I still remember how difficult it was for me to hold this big, long rifle upwards, and to hold it still ! Maybe it was too big for my body, but I learned a lot about holding a long bar like that.

I had great difficulties in holding it still, because I just can't hold a thing *absolutely* still. My hands just don't allow that. I guess my muscle fine-truning isn't good enough for that.

Yet I earned enough shots into the paper marks to be average.

This is the point where I argued from. And I have a very good long-term memory.

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 6th, 2008, 03:30
So far there's not enough information for me to decide it will be utter crap, yet (like Invisible War was…compared to the first game anyway).

The only thing that concerns me so far is calling the stealth "cover based". I mean, sure, that could be done in a decent way. But, if you think about it, the "stealth" system in Invisible War was also "cover based instead of light/shadow based". Of course that meant that there was always a conveniently placed HUGE friggin' grate covering a human sized ventilation shaft that happened to go straight to the place you needed to go…in EVERY map. Yeah…giant, human sized ventilation ducts, that you can just stroll up to and open and crawl right through. Oh, and they go nowhere except directly from where you are to where you need to get to. That's one hell of a great "cover based" stealth system. I guess technically it is cover based, I mean you are out of sight right? For some reason that part of Invisible War was a little disappointing to me. The first Deus Ex was (at least partly) a cover based system though and it worked fine…so hopefully it'll be closer to that than IW's "stealth".
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October 6th, 2008, 15:28
My problem with these so called 'action/RPG' hybrids is that they're not really RPG at all. They add some stats just to put the RPG in the box and lure some buyers, but really, they're just shooters. Even Mass Effect is just a shooter.
A real RPG is one in which you assume the role of another character. You as the player may be the best marksman in the world, but if your *character* doesn't have the stats/skills, that's what determines the outcome. Some people mention that this creates problem like you making a perfect shot at a creature, but your stats lacking show it as if you failed and 'shoot at the ground'. You need to imagine that the *character* is not sitting comfortably in a chair looking at a screen. The training comes in knowing how to breathe, how to steady the arm, how to ignore outside events/noises, how to ignore the little spider that fell on your arm, etc. That's what the stats reflect.
It's funny as in Mass Effect, I was doing perfectly fine in my fights, and then I realized I hadn't assigned my points in a while. When I opened my stat screens, I had over 20 points to assign. That right there showed that the game was just a shooter, stats didn't mean squat.
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October 6th, 2008, 16:12
Im pretty good with all kinds of weapons from paintball markers to assault rifles and heavy machineguns. The only clear difference comes when I try to shoot the biggest handheld stuff aka RPGs (i.e M72 LAW). Even after numerous tries Ive never really excelled with them. The way you have to aim with it is harder because of the big tube and the fact you need to watchout for the backblast.

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Last edited by zakhal; October 6th, 2008 at 16:28.
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October 6th, 2008, 19:50
Originally Posted by wolfing View Post
My problem with these so called 'action/RPG' hybrids is that they're not really RPG at all. They add some stats just to put the RPG in the box and lure some buyers, but really, they're just shooters. Even Mass Effect is just a shooter.
Boys, repeat after me: "an RPG is more than just a combat system!" Yay! That said, 20 points really isn't that much as far as I remember. Maybe I just suck at shooting, but I had a reasonable challenge with Mass Effect, even with spending my points and using my powers (which are more fun than shooting, anyway). I guess your mileage may vary.
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October 7th, 2008, 02:21
Originally Posted by Thaurin View Post
Boys, repeat after me: "an RPG is more than just a combat system!" Yay! That said, 20 points really isn't that much as far as I remember. Maybe I just suck at shooting, but I had a reasonable challenge with Mass Effect, even with spending my points and using my powers (which are more fun than shooting, anyway). I guess your mileage may vary.
Yeah I really don't understand the definition of RPG which states "if any of the success during combat is based upon my own dexterity then it's not an RPG" but to each their own. It's very difficult to define an RPG — and I don't try — and we can all state with some decent certainty what each of us generally likes or don't like but to exclude a game from being categorized as an RPG because of one very specific and subjective issue isn't my cup of tea.

What I can understand is not liking a game in which a player's dexterity is at least somewhat of an issue, I don't agree with it but I can understand it.
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October 7th, 2008, 15:23
Originally Posted by zakhal View Post
Im pretty good with all kinds of weapons from paintball markers to assault rifles and heavy machineguns. The only clear difference comes when I try to shoot the biggest handheld stuff aka RPGs (i.e M72 LAW). Even after numerous tries Ive never really excelled with them. The way you have to aim with it is harder because of the big tube and the fact you need to watchout for the backblast.
Funny, when I was in the military I was a pretty good shot with the heavy stuff, especially RPG's, but had real trouble hitting anything with a pistol. (I only shot a really heavy handheld RPG once, and it was so fucking scary that I doubt I'd be able to bring myself to shoot one at the range again even if offered the opportunity; I'd only be able to manage it if I was even more scared of whatever it was I was shooting at, which, I guess, is sort of the idea. The practice models shooting tracers were somehow a lot easier to deal with…)

I have a theory that it has something to do with the sights. I've been an active photographer since I was six or so, which made it rather natural to use the optical sights in RPG's, and even regular rifle sights felt familiar. OTOH shooting a pistol felt wholly unfamiliar; I never really managed to "connect" with the target.
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October 7th, 2008, 16:02
Its the most powerful handheld weapon in the world so you should be scared. Ive seen atleast one guy get injured by the backblast. He was extremely accurate with it though - he and two others shot the exact same spot (size ~15inches) from like 1km away. The rounds flew in a pattern of three with similar distance between each other all falling inline to the same spot. I couldnt believe my eyes.

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Last edited by zakhal; October 7th, 2008 at 16:09.
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