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Default Skyrim - Secrets of the Wall

January 14th, 2011, 01:22
The next tidbit of Skyrim info has been dribbled out at GameInformer, this time allowing you to explore the wall so prominently shown in the Skyrim teaser trailer. They also promise details on "the in-game mechanics, combat, and technical features" later in the month:
Last week, we revealed how the back cover of Game Informer's February issue held the keys to understanding the teaser trailer. But what about the incredibly detailed wall over which the camera pans in that video?
The zoomed-in glimpses you see within the trailer are more than they may first appear to be. The carved images are part of Alduin's Wall, named after the powerful dragon that serves as Skyrim's central antagonist. Alduin's Wall is an actual structure within the game world of Skyrim, and it plays a key part in the story of the game. It depicts a prophecy heralding the return Alduin to the world of the Elder Scrolls, as well as the history of the dragons and their interaction with humanity. Each section of the wall tells a different part of the story, and we'll explain every area in detail. Each of the previous games in the Elder Scrolls series play a part in the prophecy.
Head over to explore a Flash mockup of Alduin's Wall.
More information.
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January 14th, 2011, 01:22
Excited to see how this turns out but the story…meh so very cliche

Big bad evil has been defeated and imprisoned and now he is going to return and you have to stop him. Wow I havent played that game before.

Still if the gameplay is good I could still like it.
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January 14th, 2011, 02:10
Originally Posted by Saxon1974 View Post
Excited to see how this turns out but the story…meh so very cliche
Did anyone seriously expect a story that isnt cliche?

Fantasy = cliche.
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January 14th, 2011, 02:59
Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
Did anyone seriously expect a story that isnt cliche?

Fantasy = cliche.
There's so much non-imagination. Infinite possibilities exist. One thing doesn't have to equal another.
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January 14th, 2011, 03:12
Originally Posted by Saxon1974 View Post
Excited to see how this turns out but the story…meh so very cliche

Big bad evil has been defeated and imprisoned and now he is going to return and you have to stop him. Wow I havent played that game before.

Still if the gameplay is good I could still like it.
Alduin wasn't imprisoned and he's not evil either. Well, if they stick to the lore, which they seems to be doing so far.
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January 14th, 2011, 03:17
Originally Posted by northreign View Post
There's so much non-imagination. Infinite possibilities exist. One thing doesn't have to equal another.
Is that what people want though, could be that most prefer a story / setting they're already quite familiar with (from movies/books), and not something like PS:T. Many of my friends (casual RPG players) could never immerse themselves with PS:T, it was just too original for them, guess they couldnt relate to it at all.

There must be a reason why there's thousands of RPG's but like 1-2 with an original story PS:T comes up every time because it's the one exception heh
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January 14th, 2011, 04:08
A bit of an exaggeration there, to say the least. I could easily name a lot more than 1 or 2 games that would be considered original.
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January 14th, 2011, 09:31
There's nothing inherently cliché about fantasy. Well, except for the actual setting being used so often.

You might as well call everything a cliché - and then the term loses its meaning.

Crap story/dialogue is the norm, though, and as such I would agree. But there's no reason fantasy can't be original or simply strong material. Nothing is entirely without familiar elements, and as such everything could be a cliché. It's about how you use the familiar elements.

Even a cliché can work, if done well. I consider Bioware the masters of delivering clichés in a satisfying manner. Dragon Age is shock full of clichés - but it still works quite well. Then you have The Witcher, which I wouldn't call a cliché - and it uses familiar elements in fresh ways.

It's really about games and the expectations of the audience. We're so used to stories being crap, that the occasional gem stands out, shining bright.

With all that said, expecting strong story/dialogue from Bethesda is perhaps somewhat naive.
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January 14th, 2011, 12:42
Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
A bit of an exaggeration there, to say the least. I could easily name a lot more than 1 or 2 games that would be considered original.
That also sold good? Which ones?
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January 14th, 2011, 13:29
Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
Fantasy = cliche.
This is actually exactly the way I'm trying out with the fantasy story I'm currently writing.

I try hard to make it as much cliché as possible.

Then, the criticism of "oh, how unoriginal !" and "oh, so much cliché !" will be ultimatively true.

“ 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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January 14th, 2011, 14:44
Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
That also sold good? Which ones?
Ah…so now it suddenly changes to being about sales too? No…

Wasteland, Ultima, System Shock, Arcanum, Deus Ex, Gothic, VtM:B, Jade Empire, Arx Fatalis… I'm sure I could think of more, but I think you get the point.
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January 14th, 2011, 15:17
Not sure if i agree that most of those were original, especially not Gothic or Arx Fatalis (love both of them though). While i also loved Ultima7 1+2, i'm not so sure i would think it's original if i played it today The first ones were certainly quite strange and i guess you could say "original"..

And yeah, i'm pretty sure Bethesda thinks about sales, just like any big dev/publisher, so i would take that into account - that's what i meant by if people really want a super original story like PS:T or if they prefer the usual Bioware or Bethesda cliche that might be easier to relate / connect to. Im pretty sure it could be a reason why most games (or even fantasy books) sticks to the common cliches and are still very successful.
Last edited by bemushroomed; January 14th, 2011 at 15:29.
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January 14th, 2011, 15:39
Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
That also sold good? Which ones?
Well, for starters, Morrowind.

Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
Not sure if i agree that most of those were original, especially not Gothic or Arx Fatalis .
So first Gothic is a cliché fantasy game in your opinion?
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January 14th, 2011, 15:44
As far as the games I named, all of them were original. Of course you can feel free to explain *why* you would think any of them weren't. I could also name a lot more, but I didn't even include console RPGs, of which there are quite a few that would be considered original.

Sales is irrelevant to what the original topic was. You made a claim that there were "like 1-2 with an original story". Instead of trying to save face, why don't you just admit that it was a gross exaggeration on your part?
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January 14th, 2011, 15:50
I think the point was that people, generally, want something they're familiar with, and I think he's right.

Of course sales are relevant, as they show what people buy - and can definitely be used as a general guide to what the average person prefers to spend money on.

None of the games mentioned are "original" in a way that can be objectively quantified. I'd say, personally, that some of them are quite original in how they use very familiar elements, and some are pretty unoriginal in that same way. Jade Empire, for instance, is totally cliché - except if you're not familiar with the asian mythologies.
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January 14th, 2011, 15:53
Originally Posted by DeepO View Post
Well, for starters, Morrowind.



So first Gothic is a cliché fantasy game in your opinion?
Morrowind was much better than Oblivion story and lore wise, it wasnt as successful as Oblivion though (not that it has to mean that a really unoriginal story always sells better..). Yes i think Gothic1 was pretty cliche with the usual evil orcs and magic barrier, not very original.

JDR13: why dont you explain how they are original? I dont need to "save face". PS:T is the one that stands out for me, original setting, original characters and plot, nothing really compares imo, i would probably have to compare it with a fantasy book (there are far more original fantasy books than games) and not a game…
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January 14th, 2011, 15:57
Actually, they are.

They are original in the way that there hadn't previously been something that was very similar in terms of story.

As far as many people wanting something they're familiar with, sure.
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January 14th, 2011, 16:02
Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
Yes i think Gothic1 was pretty cliche with the usual evil orcs and magic barrier, not very original.
What other crpg placed you in the role of a nameless prisoner tossed into a mining colony surrounded by a magic barrier? Yes, Orcs are cliche, but that has nothing to do with the story.
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January 14th, 2011, 16:18
Jade Empire hasn't been done in a very similar way before? Have you played other Bioware games? Really…

How about Arx Fatalis which is almost identical to Ultima Underworld in terms of the setup? You're a prisoner that needs to break out of the dungeon - and along the way you befriend people from the underground cities, or make them into your enemy. I haven't played Arx in a long time, so I hope you don't also have to rescue a princess-figure like in UU

Even System Shock uses the same basic premise - though a prison has been replaced with a medical bay - and the dungeon with a space station. How many times have we been exposed to the amnesia plot setup, with no recollection of who we are or what we're doing? Was SS really the first one to do this?

Gothic, while I don't think it was particularly cliché, uses the very familiar "prisoner" setup from so many books and movies. You need to infiltrate and build up your strength, and earn a reputation to get respect from the "in-mates" and eventually you have to save everyone by slaying a gigantic beastie. Wow, that's original

You can call them original until you're blue in the face, but it's just an opinion.
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January 14th, 2011, 16:24
Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
Morrowind was much better than Oblivion story and lore wise, it wasnt as successful as Oblivion though (not that it has to mean that a really unoriginal story always sells better..).
Which one was more successful is kinda disputable given quite substantial difference in release date, but I doubt Oblivion was more "successful" for its unoriginality.
On the other hand, I´d bet a lot of Morrowind´s success came from its non-cliché setting.

Originally Posted by bemushroomed View Post
Yes i think Gothic1 was pretty cliche with the usual evil orcs and magic barrier, not very original.
G1´s story and setting are quite far from cliché (in computer games), orcs or not.

Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
I think the point was that people, generally, want something they're familiar with, and I think he's right.

Of course sales are relevant,
No, sales are actually completely irrelevant when we, as players, discuss whether a game is cliché or not.
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