|
Your donations keep RPGWatch running!
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Dungeon Siege 3 - Interview @ RPS

Default Dungeon Siege 3 - Interview @ RPS

September 15th, 2010, 04:33
Chris Taylor (the Gas Powered Games' Chris Taylor) has been interviewed at Rock, Paper, Shotgun about Dungeon Siege 3. As a consultant only, he often doesn't have much to say about the game directly but he does make some interesting comments on game length and other issues:
RPS: So! How do you feel about Dungeon Siege, looking back on it?

CT: I think we made a game that was bigger than it needed to be, and that delivered more hours of gameplay than people technically wanted. It’s important that people get through a game. If somebody stops playing because of the sheer, daunting size of it, they don’t advertise the game to their friends, which is a really interesting byproduct of game completion.

Think about a game that you don’t get all the way through. You don’t talk about it. But the game you get all the way through in 8 hours, you come to the office on Monday and say “Yeah, I got through this, this and this.” “How was it?” “Pretty good.” “Can I borrow it? Ah, I’m gonna pick up a copy on my way home.”

But when you don’t finish a game, these kinds of conversations don’t happen. You don’t market it to your friends.

RPS: I guess if you don’t finish a game, you don’t finish it for a reason, so the last taste in your mouth…

CT: Is the quitting taste.

RPS: Yeah. You don’t finish it because, say-

CT: The end level boss was too hard.

RPS: And when that happens, you don’t say “Hey man! You have to play this game. It’s probably good. I don’t know.”

CT: Exactly. “I wouldn’t know because I haven’t finished it, but you should go buy it.
While we're on this game, PC Gamer has a short preview:
The technology is impressive. The dungeon they’re fighting through is miles deep. You can see it spiralling down into the depths. Each little goblin that gets knocked off the ledge can be seen pinwheeling into the river below. This isn’t an off-the-shelf tech solution like the Unreal engine: this is developer Obsidian finally flexing their technical muscles.
More information.
Dhruin is offline

Dhruin

Dhruin's Avatar
Keeper of the Watch
Super Moderator
RPGWatch Team

#1

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 11,968

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 04:33
Sounds like he has fooled himself into believing we want to play the minigames they put out nowadays. If I spend $69 on a game, and it lasts only a few hours, I get quite upset. Guess I won't be buying his stuff anymore.

Chris, if you're reading this, the reason Dungeon Siege was bad, was because it had no real story. It was boring.
Jaimi is offline

Jaimi

Traveler

#2

Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 15

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 07:47
Originally Posted by Dhruin View Post
Think about a game that you don’t get all the way through. You don’t talk about it
That's so not true at all! The 'fun factor' is the most important to get me talking about it with friends.
Daroou is offline

Daroou

Sentinel

#3

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 343

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 08:12
I agree with you. I have played a lot of games I never finished and still talked a LOT about with friends.

If that wasn't the case, then what about games without a real ending (like sports games, simulations, the Sims, etc.) or really long games (like strategy games)?
SveNitoR is offline

SveNitoR

Sentinel

#4

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Sweden
Posts: 358

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 11:16
I'm glad he isn't making this game.
guenthar is offline

guenthar

SasqWatch

#5

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 1,573
Send a message via Skype™ to guenthar

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 12:02
This guy is a moron in terms of making great games.

He's also ignoring perspective, which is what drives a lot of people. I'm certainly driven by the IDEA - that a game will be long-lasting. Whether I "complete" it or not, is largely irrelevant. I hate the trend of short consumable games, that are more like tiny snacks than a fulfilling experience.

Also, did anyone "complete" an MMORPG, ever? Do we need to look at the money they're making to completely bury this ridiculous argument?
DArtagnan is offline

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#6

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 15,258

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 13:20
Originally Posted by Jaimi View Post
Sounds like he has fooled himself into believing we want to play the minigames they put out nowadays. If I spend $69 on a game, and it lasts only a few hours, I get quite upset. Guess I won't be buying his stuff anymore.
Well, shooter games actually develop into "mini games" right now. They become shorter and shorter.

“ 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)
Alrik Fassbauer is offline

Alrik Fassbauer

Alrik Fassbauer's Avatar
TL;DR

#7

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Old Europe
Posts: 16,032

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 13:40
8 hours is too short, and the sole reason why I didn't buy a few games.
Krzychu is offline

Krzychu

Krzychu's Avatar
Sentinel

#8

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Milky Way
Posts: 486

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 14:41
Well… I wouldn't personally be so absolute that he's wrong.
I've noticed myself that I often have lower opinion on games that I didn't finish because of their size… And yeah, that sounds bleeding obvious until I look back and realize that I've been playing that game exclusively for a month before I started losing interest. The problem might partially be that all the fun I had ends up being replaced by the boredom of the few last sessions.

Then again there plenty of games that I've never finished but I still have a very high opinion of, so that is certainly not the only factor.

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#9

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 14:45
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
Well… I wouldn't personally be so absolute that he's wrong.
I've noticed myself that I often have lower opinion on games that I didn't finish because of their size… And yeah, that sounds bleeding obvious until I look back and realize that I've been playing that game exclusively for a month before I started losing interest. The problem might partially be that all the fun I had ends up being replaced by the boredom of the few last sessions.

Then again there plenty of games that I've never finished but I still have a very high opinion of, so that is certainly not the only factor.
Naturally, if a game is boring - it doesn't help if it's a long game.

The thing is, though, that you can't use that as some kind of universal guideline.

Reading between the lines, this is about how much it costs for developers to make easily marketed explosion-games, that the average consumer will find appealing.

That doesn't make the games better, it just helps when you need to turn a profit with sure-fire development procedures.

8 hours of explosion after explosion will sell, and it will be profitable because you can market explosions easily.

Afterall, how can you resist something that goes boom all the time?
DArtagnan is offline

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#10

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 15,258

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 14:57
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Naturally, if a game is boring - it doesn't help if it's a long game.
It's different if it takes 100 hours before it starts getting boring though.
I can't blame a game for not keeping entertained for more than that.
It would, however, make more sense if I was to blame a game for not keeping me entertained all the way to the end.

Your cynical 'between the lines' observation finds me mostly in agreement, but I still think there's a fair chance that the meaning of that quote could be something like: we are not going to make a game that will drag for a length longer than necessary to achieve a complete and satisfying experience'.

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#11

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 15:05
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
It's different if it takes 100 hours before it starts getting boring though.
I can't blame a game for not keeping entertained for more than that.
It would, however, make more sense if I was to blame a game for not keeping me entertained all the way to the end.
Well, again, I'm very much driven by the perspective of a game. Like, when I sit down to play something like Oblivion - I'm fascinated by the possibilities. It's not that I will necessarily play it for 100 hours, but the fact that I COULD do that, makes me interested in investing myself. Because I tend to find games that are very short extremely unappealing, because I know they'll end at any moment. That makes it hard for me to enjoy and immerse myself, because who likes having good things end

So, I generally ignore "short" CRPGs - especially in a game like Dungeon Siege. Dungeon Siege is, basically, a watered down Diablo clone - and it's ALL about building a powerful character.

Why would I want to invest in building a powerful character and salivating over loot, if I know the game will end in a few hours? That seems incredibly counter-productive to me.

That's why I think his point is way off. It'd be different if the game was a strong story-driven shooter, or whatever. Something that you don't really invest in - as much as simply an experience as a pleasant snack.

Your cynical 'between the lines' observation finds me mostly in agreement, but I still think there's a fair chance that the meaning of that quote could be something like: we are not going to make a game that will drag for a length longer than necessary to achieve a complete and satisfying experience'.
Yeah, I'm quite the cynic when it comes to the industry. Especially with a developer like Chris Taylor, who went from being a visionary developer, to a completely dull cookie-cutter developer.

Can you say Space Siege?

But I'm happy for you, that you have this trust in their best intentions. In fact, I think they DO believe they're doing the right thing. It's just that their "right thing" is about return for their investment, and that's not really the optimal motivator for the best game - from where I'm sitting.
DArtagnan is offline

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#12

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 15,258

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 15:39
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Because I tend to find games that are very short extremely unappealing
Often true for me as well but then… Fallout (1)

(it's not the size of the game etc…)



Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Yeah, I'm quite the cynic when it comes to the industry. Especially with a developer like Chris Taylor, who went from being a visionary developer, to a completely dull cookie-cutter developer.

Can you say Space Siege?

But I'm happy for you, that you have this trust in their best intentions. In fact, I think they DO believe they're doing the right thing. It's just that their "right thing" is about return for their investment, and that's not really the optimal motivator for the best game - from where I'm sitting.
Fair enough. I haven't played any of the 'siege' games so I certainly can't comment. (and I'm not even interested about this one yet) My thoughts were exclusively in regards with the quote in the op.

I just think that a good way for a company to get that return for their investment is often doing a good job. We might end up with a product simply intended to draw money from us, but if it's a product made well and professionally it would still worth it.

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#13

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 15:46
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
I just think that a good way for a company to get that return for their investment is often doing a good job. We might end up with a product simply intended to draw money from us, but if it's a product made well and professionally it would still worth it.
Worth it, well, sure. I don't mind paying for McDonald's once in a while - as I know what I'm getting.

But consider that we're supporting mediocrity - when we could be supporting superiority.

That's really the gist of where I'm coming from.

I'd rather have 1 great game than 20 mediocre or "ok" games.

In fact, I'd be fine paying much more for a great game, than the average price.

So, my point is:

It's easy to make a mediocre game and sell it, if you're competent and you have the financial backing.

But is it the best game it could be, and is it worth it?

Sure, if you're about money.

If you're about the game… I think not.
DArtagnan is offline

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#14

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 15,258

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 15:56
But I'm not talking about mediocrity… I'm talking about a professionally constructed product. ie if I want to make a lot of money selling food, I might start a fast-food restaurant or I might start one that serves good healthy food and expect that this quality is what will eventually get me noticed.

So if I say 'I'm going into the food bussiness because I hear there's a lot of money to be made there', I'm not offering enough 'data' for negative or positive criticism on the quality of what I'm going to serve.

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#15

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 16:03
Originally Posted by holeraw View Post
But I'm not talking about mediocrity… I'm talking about a professionally constructed product. ie if I want to make a lot of money selling food, I might start a fast-food restaurant or I might start one that serves good healthy food and expect that this quality is what will eventually get me noticed.
Something isn't good because it's professionally made. At least, that's not how I see it.

Personally, I think Avatar (the movie) is a fantastic "product" made with a ton of skill and craftsmanship. Yet, I think it's one of the worst crap movies I've ever seen. It's not even mediocre, it's just plain bad.

The two concepts don't connect, for me.

So if I say 'I'm going into the food bussiness because I hear there's a lot of money to be made there', I'm not offering enough 'data' for negative or positive criticism on the quality of what I'm going to serve.
Not in your experience, I guess.

In my experience, it's the drive and the goal that determines the outcome - not the skill involved.

The more people are involved, the harder it gets to be precise about this, because they can all contribute based on different motivations. But ultimately, on any big project - it's one guy at the top with the overall vision, and that's the guy who will have the largest say in the outcome.
DArtagnan is offline

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#16

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 15,258

Default 

September 15th, 2010, 16:23
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Personally, I think Avatar (the movie) is a fantastic "product" made with a ton of skill and craftsmanship. Yet, I think it's one of the worst crap movies I've ever seen. It's not even mediocre, it's just plain bad.
The way I see it: If it's just bad then it's not made with a ton of skill and craftsmanship.
A skilled and scrupulous craftsman would not just accept to produce mediocrity.

So ultimately the way I see it it's not just about one's motivations but also about one's sense of professional 'honor'.


Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
In my experience, it's the drive and the goal that determines the outcome - not the skill involved.
And about that I don't think we're going to agree so lets leave it at that and go back talking about the appeal of torturing naked ladies in dark dungeons (also because I don't care at all about this game but the Witcher… no contest).

"I am not interested in good; I am interested in new, even if this includes the possibility of it's being evil"
(LaMonte Young, 1962)
holeraw is offline

holeraw

holeraw's Avatar
V.G.A.

#17

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 693

Default 

September 16th, 2010, 01:50
I think most CRPGs are too long.

40+ hours? The vast majority of the greatest novels ever written in any language wouldn't take that long to read. CRPGs are bloated with filler to justify the $60 price tag.

There's cost, and there's value. I have a good income and don't mind shelling out cash for games. Long length does not mean good quality.

Face it, CRPGs are at best decent examples of interactive genre fiction and most are full of clichés. I wish they'd cut the fat out of them and make them leaner and less likely to bore me with repetitive crap so they can put a blurb on the box telling you how long it is. A timesink is a timesink.
Ovenall is offline

Ovenall

Ovenall's Avatar
Keeper of the Watch

#18

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Downtown Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,069

Default 

September 16th, 2010, 02:14
Yes, I agree. "Length' is irrelevant on its own because it's all relative to the content. I think it's harder to do a good RPG in a very short (say, < 10 hours) game because you need a sense of character and story development but, otherwise, each game should be judged on the balance of its merits. I'd much rather the filler is jettisoned and have a good, shorter game with denser content in many cases.

-= RPGWatch =-
Dhruin is offline

Dhruin

Dhruin's Avatar
Keeper of the Watch
Super Moderator
RPGWatch Team

#19

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Sydney, Australia
Posts: 11,968

Default 

September 16th, 2010, 10:37
You don't make a good game simply by having it shock full of dense content. You also need to allow the player to breathe.

Some of us adore the non-linear open world structure CRPGs - and you can't make such a game without perspective and you don't strictly script every single encounter.

Dungeon Siege 3, if it's ANYTHING like the past games - and if it's ANYTHING like Diablo - needs to be big. If not, then at least it needs to be replayable with increasing levels of difficulty.

If they're just calling it Dungeon Siege 3 - but are really making something else entirely, then I guess a shorter game could work. I just don't see the reason why you'd go about it, like that.

Then again, I was never much into snacks. I prefer hearty meals more or less all the time.
DArtagnan is offline

DArtagnan

DArtagnan's Avatar
Waste of potential

#20

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 15,258
RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Dungeon Siege 3 - Interview @ RPS
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT +2. The time now is 14:48.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright by RPGWatch