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Default Dragon Age - Retrospective Interview @ VideoGamer

November 18th, 2009, 13:21
Originally Posted by zakhal View Post
If Id name one ass from this forum its you imho. I might be one too but only towards freeloaders.
Why are you pushing this, if you don't want an argument?

Now you insist he's a pirate - wihout any kind of evidence whatsoever.

You're simply displaying an inability to behave cordially and demonstrating why you're not worth my time. You're behaving like a child who got called on bad behaviour and you can't admit it and instead you start making irrelevant comments on your opinion of me, as if it mattered in this context.

You're on ignore, so we can save some time and effort in the future.
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November 18th, 2009, 14:05
Whoah, calm down, people. This is the first time I see someone fight over my nickname
Just don't look much into it, it's just something I randomly selected when registering(I may have been downloading openSUSE Linux torrent at that time or something)… If I had named myself "HTTP", would you assume I'm one of those rapidshare pirates, too?

The assumption that a pirated version looks worse is, well, improbable. On the other hand, I haven't seen one so I'm not sure.

The difference between console and PC versions is in textures, not in facial animations, so no point there. Plus, I'm playing a PC version, anyway.

As for NWN (actually, I said NWN2) - well, that's just my opinion. I remember NWN2 with much better faces than this (especially in MotB). Maybe my memory doesn't serve me well, but at least the cutscenes were of much higher quality than here (the city elf origin part).

Actually, bloodlines had some bloody good models. The walking animations sucked somewhat though.

Sorry for just expressing my opinion.

Edit: Oh, and don't confuse "detailed" with "bad-looking". It may be detailed, but it's still awkward-looking and expressionless.
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November 18th, 2009, 14:12
Originally Posted by torrentss View Post
Whoah, calm down, people. This is the first time I see someone fight over my nickname
Just don't look much into it, it's just something I randomly selected when registering(I may have been downloading openSUSE Linux torrent at that time or something)… If I had named myself "HTTP", would you assume I'm one of those rapidshare pirates, too?
Torrent is much more easily referred to pirating that HTTP but dont take it seriously - it was just dartagan who made it serious. He somtimes likes to start long arguments that lead nowhere.

I just thought it funny if bioware had actually released an inferior version as a torrent. Companies releasing "tweaked" torrent-versions of their games on release is nothing new as we know.

The difference between console and PC versions is in textures, not in facial animations, so no point there. Plus, I'm playing a PC version, anyway.

Sorry for just expressing my opinion.
There are som other differences too than textures. Are you playing on max settings on your PC?

I clearly remember how dated kotor looks (I just played it) and saying that dragon age is worse just cant be true. Thats atleast my opinnion.

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November 18th, 2009, 14:29
Originally Posted by zakhal View Post
There are som other differences too than textures. Are you playing on max settings on your PC?
Yes, I am. I don't think they would make the animations depend on settings though.
I clearly remember how dated kotor looks (I just played it) and saying that dragon age is worse just cant be true. Thats atleast my opinnion.
Hmm, I remember it looking quite well, actually. Especially the Bastila model.
I don't know, there's something definitely missing from DA's human models. The first thought I had when I saw them was "oh, this is as bad as morrowind…". And the talk animations and facial expressions are not up to the other games I mentioned (OK, kotor may not have had lots of expressions, but still…).

I guess it has something to do with the engine. NWN2 used its own engine, as did KOTOR+Jade. ME was built on the superb Unreal engine, and you wouldn't really recognize the NWN engine in the Witcher.
The Dragon Age seems to have inherited some of that old NWN-ness, somehow.

Disclaimer: All of the above is my personal opinion. Please don't fight me or each other over it. Thanks.
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November 18th, 2009, 14:37
Originally Posted by torrentss View Post
Disclaimer: All of the above is my personal opinion. Please don't fight me or each other over it. Thanks.
I would never fight at a place like this, and it would never be because of an opinion

In any case, I very much disagree with your opinion. I'm replaying KotOR 2 - or was until Dragon Age came around - and it's FAR below in terms of facial/model details. The animations are simply ugly in comparison, to boot.

I think Dragon Age looks great overall, and the models are very good. Particularly in terms of combat animations and general movement. The "cinematic" close-ups and such are slightly behind Mass Effect, but they're anything but ugly in my opinion.

It's obvious, though, that the game has been in development for a while and it's not quite top-of-the-line as one might expect from Bioware with a brand new game. Still, it's an incredibly solid product overall, and having the visuals slightly the behind the times is pretty minor in the grand scheme of things - I think.
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November 18th, 2009, 14:58
Originally Posted by torrentss View Post
I guess it has something to do with the engine. NWN2 used its own engine, as did KOTOR+Jade. ME was built on the superb Unreal engine, and you wouldn't really recognize the NWN engine in the Witcher.
The Dragon Age seems to have inherited some of that old NWN-ness, somehow.
Whew, this is too much simplification. To get it straight

NWN 1 used the Aurora engine
NWN 2 used the Electron engine which was an updated version of the Aurora engine, providing support for more polygons, hires textures and bump maps.
The Witcher used the Aurora script engine ONLY, the grafics are based on a self developed engine by CDProjekt Red.
KotoR 1+2 used the Odyssey engine which was a heavily modified Aurora engine that added 3D backgrounds and character facial motions.
Jade Empire and Dragon Age used the Eclipse engine which is an updated version of the Odyssey engine
Mass Effect used a licenced Unreal3.5 engine.

Look here
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aurora_Engine
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Odyssey_Engine
http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3133867
Last edited by Sir_Brennus; November 18th, 2009 at 14:59. Reason: typo
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November 18th, 2009, 15:05
I think "torrentss" should rename himself or herselff into "treasuress" or even into "treasuresssss".
Being followed by a user title of "Mine ! Mine it is ! My Treasuresssss!"

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November 18th, 2009, 15:22
Originally Posted by Sir_Brennus View Post
Whew, this is too much simplification. To get it straight
NWN 1 used the Aurora engine
NWN 2 used the Electron engine which was an updated version of the Aurora engine, providing support for more polygons, hires textures and bump maps.
The Witcher used the Aurora script engine ONLY, the grafics are based on a self developed engine by CDProjekt Red.
KotoR 1+2 used the Odyssey engine which was a heavily modified Aurora engine that added 3D backgrounds and character facial motions.
Jade Empire and Dragon Age used the Eclipse engine which is an updated version of the Odyssey engine
Mass Effect used a licenced Unreal3.5 engine.
Actually, I think Obsidian rewrote the Electron engine completely in the end. See the interview here: http://rpgvault.ign.com/articles/678/678028p2.html

Jade Empire - well, it's still a continuation of the kotor engine codebase and, frankly, doesn't really look that different visually.

There's a big difference between Jade and DA engines though. Considering that DA has been in development since 2003 or so, I wouldn't be surprised if it had a completely different codebase. The names companies give to various iterations of their products may not always reflect the technical reality.

ME used Unreal 3, not 3.5.

So, to conclude, the only game that's closest to the original NWN is DA - its development started just when NWN's finished. The early screens looked as if they were straight from NWN.
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November 18th, 2009, 15:27
One should perhaps remember that there's a potential GIGANTIC difference between engine and art assets, as I learned recently with The Witcher 2.

I honestly can't fathom how anyone would think that KotOR had better models than DA:O - but there are many things I don't understand in terms of human opinion - so…
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November 18th, 2009, 16:41
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
One should perhaps remember that there's a potential GIGANTIC difference between engine and art assets, as I learned recently with The Witcher 2.

I honestly can't fathom how anyone would think that KotOR had better models than DA:O - but there are many things I don't understand in terms of human opinion - so…
Yeah, it is a bit ridiculous. I will say, however, that there seems to be some objects that are genuinely bugged and have extremely low resolution textures (PC/Steam version on max settings). I find the NPC faces and models to be well done. There are a few that could use higher res textures.
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November 18th, 2009, 17:55
Originally Posted by torrentss View Post
Actually, I think Obsidian rewrote the Electron engine completely in the end. See the interview here: http://rpgvault.ign.com/articles/678/678028p2.html
I don't think that your interpreation is the only possible one. Ferret (before he got sacked) said: "we created Electron from scratch", but all the mentioned features are add ons to the old engine. If you have played NWN2, you will have a very NWN like look and feel

Jade Empire - well, it's still a continuation of the kotor engine codebase and, frankly, doesn't really look that different visually.
I disagree. Just because the POV and especially the GUI is similar it is not the same. DA and JE look so different because of the focus platform. JE was targeted on the XBox, hence the KotORish look and feel. Technically DA and JE are closer.

There's a big difference between Jade and DA engines though. Considering that DA has been in development since 2003 or so, I wouldn't be surprised if it had a completely different codebase. The names companies give to various iterations of their products may not always reflect the technical reality.
Well, I think you may be wrong. The doctors said:
Step back in time to E3, 2004 AD, when BioWare teased PC RPG fandom with a brief glimpse of Dragon Age for the first (and for the past two-plus years, only) time. "That," explains Greig, "was our proof-of-concept test. We had just finished Neverwinter Nights and were thinking we needed to do something that's gonna be Baldur's Gate, only next-generation—with all the in-depth story stuff, all the characters, only much more cinematic and visceral. We had the idea to put together the exploration view of Knights of the Old Republic and capture the party-based action-packed combat of Baldur's Gate, only in 3D and advanced, so [that demo] was really a test to put that together…we knew it was early, but we wanted to make sure fans knew we were working on PC games, too. We'd just done KOTOR, Jade Empire was coming out, we knew Mass Effect was about to be announced [all for the Xbox or Xbox 360], and we just wanted to reassure our PC fans we hadn't forgotten them.
Don't confuse the early build of the game with the final product. The 2004 version was made with the original NWN toolset, as it is visible in this picture (especially the character models)
http://uk.media.pc.gamespy.com/media…g_2128817.html, but this version was discontinued.

The difference between the NWN version and the final product is very much visible ESPECIALLY in the characters faces.

ME used Unreal 3, not 3.5.
Okay this was an oversight.

Mass Effect used Unreal 3.
Mass Effect 2 WILL use Unreal 3.5 (aka Gears of War iteration)

So, to conclude, the only game that's closest to the original NWN is DA - its development started just when NWN's finished. The early screens looked as if they were straight from NWN.
No, your conclusion has been proven wrong. Regarding your last sentence, see above and compare it with a modeled face from DAO http://uk.pc.ign.com/dor/objects/682…page=mediaFull
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November 18th, 2009, 18:00
The graphics are quite good in DA because they DIDN'T try for super realistic. The character animations are really well done and the way people move looks quite natural. Everything is pretty consistent.

Look at Risen for instance. Some things in it look almost stunningly good *but* that just makes everything else stand out as god awful bad. Looking at the trees and bushes is just WOW (unless you get too close) but then you get to a building interior and UGH. Plus the characters move (and look) weird.
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November 18th, 2009, 18:31
I stumbled on this earlier.

Hi-Res textures for DA

http://social.bioware.com/project/539/

or

http://www.dragonagenexus.com/downloads/file.php?id=15
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November 18th, 2009, 19:04
Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
I stumbled on this earlier.

Hi-Res textures for DA

http://social.bioware.com/project/539/

or

http://www.dragonagenexus.com/downloads/file.php?id=15
Nice! Looks pretty good:

http://www.dragonagenexus.com/downlo…1258362508.jpg
http://www.dragonagenexus.com/downlo…1258362623.jpg

Does anyone know alternative place to get it? You need to create an account in nexus to get this.

EDIT: Nevermind it seems I allready had account for nexus. Didnt even know it.

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Last edited by zakhal; November 18th, 2009 at 19:54.
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November 18th, 2009, 19:34
As far as the statement that the facial animations won't be different between the XBox and the PC, it's likely that they're not, but it's possible that they are different.
When developing for different platforms, they could have memory issues that limit the number of skeletal animations or even the number of actual bones or functions of bones in any given character. I haven't seen the XBox360 version (though I own a 360), but I have to say that on the PC the facial animations really look pretty nice. Good expression controlling not just phoenems, but also emotion brought in with extra bones placed in the cheeks and brows.
Opinion, of course; but I do have to say I'm very impressed with the art and technical team on creating fluid, believable characters. Not to say I don't see any potential areas of improvement, but overall it's quality work.
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November 18th, 2009, 20:11
I have facial animations, too !

(And there does in fact exist an illness which kind of makes human faces "unanimated" … http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Facial_nerve_paralysis )

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November 18th, 2009, 20:13
Quote:

"I felt pleasing my party members almost more important than the overarching goal of saving the world. I was more bothered about pleasing Morrigan with my choices than getting on with the main quest. "

THAT is what I HATE about the game. The party members are way to independent, like a walking critic holding scores over every goddamn decision of mine. I don't carry around people to score my every step and end up pleasing them! I am to save the world, dammit not please some touchy egos. Bioware went WAY overhead with this. Companions are free to have opinions, but when I have my own private jury following me, it gets annoying. I ended up hating all, outside of Zevran, who ended up the most loyal, since he usually had no judgement on my decisions.
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November 18th, 2009, 21:00
I disagree. I think it says more about the person who's playing the game than the game itself. If you're more focused on whether Morrigan approves of your behavior than on saving the world, maybe that's not Bioware's problem.

I find it a minor variable: tiny scores flash briefly in the bottom corner of the screen, and they are easily ignored if that is not your priority. If you're like me and enjoy intentionally doing things that people disapprove of, a negative score can actually be laugh-worthy.

And if it bugs you when you get disapproval, just buy them a cheap trinket and all is forgiven.
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November 18th, 2009, 22:35
The game is exactly what I thought it would be.

Companion babysitting, having to go talk to them between every mission so they can whine and cry about their poor poor lives so that I can unlock all their side quests and special skills.

"I'll tell you why I'm running around helping people Morrigan, it's called a side quests in a Bioware game. If I don't do them I'm going to be under level for the story fights and probably miss out on some good loot. Shut up about it already and quit freezing all the melee characters with every cone of cold you cast."
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November 18th, 2009, 22:42
Originally Posted by LuckyCarbon View Post
"I'll tell you why I'm running around helping people Morrigan, it's called a side quests in a Bioware game. If I don't do them I'm going to be under level for the story fights and probably miss out on some good loot. Shut up about it already and quit freezing all the melee characters with every cone of cold you cast."

That's pretty funny, and unfortunately very true.

I was a little disappointed that they followed the exact same formula that they've been using since KotOR.
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