U7 vs. Baldur's Gate

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Is Baldur's Gate worth trying after U7?

Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG vs
U7?

I mean - game principles, engine features (like - are NPCs smart or
not?), plot depth, possibilities of cheating like JPMorris did with U7SI,
and so on...

--
Max
 
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"Moscow Dragon" <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru> wrote in message
news:cv5d34$2mca$1@gavrilo.mtu.ru...
> Is Baldur's Gate worth trying after U7?
>
> Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG vs
> U7?
>
> I mean - game principles, engine features (like - are NPCs smart or
> not?), plot depth, possibilities of cheating like JPMorris did with U7SI,
> and so on...

I've been playing BG1 after having trouble getting back into U7 due to poor
state of mind (bored civ3 player looking for a different game to play). I
find it (so far) much more difficult to play due to the strict adherence to
the AD&D 2.0 rules. It has a fairly complex storyline and the NPC's interact
amusingly with each other at times. U7 seems somewhat simplistic when
looking back and comparing them in my mind. Perhaps U7 just handled the
internals a little more smoothly.

There is no "die and end up in Paws". If you die, you either restart the
game or load a saved game and do something different. It is extremely easy
to die in BG1. I've restarted several times because as i learn how the
interface and gameplay work, i wish i had done something different, so did.

Check out alt.games.baldurs-gate where i have a thread i've been using for
newbie questions.

Downloaded maps might be helpfull since dungeons might be a bit hard to map
although the game takes care of keeping track of where you have been fairly
well.

I've read about some cheat cracks but don't plan on experimenting with them.
 
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"Moscow Dragon" <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru> wrote in message
news:cv5d34$2mca$1@gavrilo.mtu.ru...
> Is Baldur's Gate worth trying after U7?
>
> Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG vs
> U7?
>
> I mean - game principles, engine features (like - are NPCs smart or
> not?), plot depth, possibilities of cheating like JPMorris did with U7SI,
> and so on...

We've played the latter, and once started to play the former--the main
drawback, that we saw, was the movement speed. Everything else (graphics
and the like) we could have lived with... but the movement speed, after a
long enough time, was unbearable. Granted, our attempts to uncover as much
about the map that could be covered (up to and including going around
Candlekeep in each direction, as far as we were able) may have contributed
to the acuteness of this disadvantage.

Sadly, in reference to plot depth and the like, we didn't get very far, and
so can't say much--if anything--about it. Sorry.

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On Mon, 21 Feb 2005 13:37:13 -0000, "The Triad" <wanderer@beeb.web> wrote:

>"Moscow Dragon" <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru> wrote in message
>news:cv5d34$2mca$1@gavrilo.mtu.ru...
>> Is Baldur's Gate worth trying after U7?
>>
>> Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG vs
>> U7?
>>
>> I mean - game principles, engine features (like - are NPCs smart or
>> not?), plot depth, possibilities of cheating like JPMorris did with U7SI,
>> and so on...
>
>We've played the latter, and once started to play the former--the main
>drawback, that we saw, was the movement speed. Everything else (graphics
>and the like) we could have lived with... but the movement speed, after a
>long enough time, was unbearable. Granted, our attempts to uncover as much
>about the map that could be covered (up to and including going around
>Candlekeep in each direction, as far as we were able) may have contributed
>to the acuteness of this disadvantage.
>
>Sadly, in reference to plot depth and the like, we didn't get very far, and
>so can't say much--if anything--about it. Sorry.

The most fun thing I remember about it was the way assassins show up in
various towns to kill you - reminded me a bit of U5 and the way towns
might not be safe there.

There are a lot of side quests. Seems like there is a funny one about a
chicken...

I'd say it would be worth playing. No game yet lives up to U7 but that
doesn't mean you should eschew all of them.

--
Michael Cecil
http://home.comcast.net/~macecil/
http://home.comcast.net/~safehex/
 
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The Triad wrote:

>> Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG
>> vs U7?
>
> We've played the latter, and once started to play the former--the main
> drawback, that we saw, was the movement speed. Everything else (graphics
> and the like) we could have lived with... but the movement speed, after a
> long enough time, was unbearable.

There's a "run" mode, where the characters race around instead of walking.
It certainly speeds things up, although it takes a bit of the realism away
from the game.

> Granted, our attempts to uncover as
> much about the map that could be covered (up to and including going around
> Candlekeep in each direction, as far as we were able) may have contributed
> to the acuteness of this disadvantage.

I probably spent quite a few minutes on some of the coastal regions trying
to get more of the map exposed

> Sadly, in reference to plot depth and the like, we didn't get very far,
> and so can't say much--if anything--about it. Sorry.

The plot is a little more closed (and linear), there certainly is much
less interaction with the world, but it is purdy. It's also a fairly
involved and interesting storyline so linearity isn't so bad (besides,
most books are linear and I like books).

--
Chris Craig
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"Chris Craig" <usenet@ciotog.net> wrote in message
news:pan.2005.02.22.07.06.54.192452@ciotog.net...
> The Triad wrote:
>
>>> Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG
>>> vs U7?
>>
>> We've played the latter, and once started to play the former--the main
>> drawback, that we saw, was the movement speed. Everything else (graphics
>> and the like) we could have lived with... but the movement speed, after
>> a
>> long enough time, was unbearable.
>
> There's a "run" mode, where the characters race around instead of walking.
> It certainly speeds things up, although it takes a bit of the realism away
> from the game.

Doesn't that also speed everyone else up, too?

>> Granted, our attempts to uncover as
>> much about the map that could be covered (up to and including going
>> around
>> Candlekeep in each direction, as far as we were able) may have
>> contributed
>> to the acuteness of this disadvantage.
>
> I probably spent quite a few minutes on some of the coastal regions trying
> to get more of the map exposed

*nods; winces*

>> Sadly, in reference to plot depth and the like, we didn't get very far,
>> and so can't say much--if anything--about it. Sorry.
>
> The plot is a little more closed (and linear), there certainly is much
> less interaction with the world, but it is purdy. It's also a fairly
> involved and interesting storyline so linearity isn't so bad (besides,
> most books are linear and I like books).

Hmm.

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The Triad wrote:

>> There's a "run" mode, where the characters race around instead of
>> walking. It certainly speeds things up, although it takes a bit of the
>> realism away from the game.
>
> Doesn't that also speed everyone else up, too?

Just party members. It's kinda funny to see how each of them scurries
around - but PS:Torment was more fun in this regard.

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In article <1108998577.76abd8b8184259244d6fa3557736ecbc@teranews>,
macecil@comcast.net says...
> On Mon, 21 Feb 2005 13:37:13 -0000, "The Triad" <wanderer@beeb.web> wrote:
>
> >"Moscow Dragon" <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru> wrote in message
> >news:cv5d34$2mca$1@gavrilo.mtu.ru...
> >> Is Baldur's Gate worth trying after U7?
> >>
> >> Can somebody list the advantages of BG vs U7 and the drawbacks of BG vs
> >> U7?
> >>
> >> I mean - game principles, engine features (like - are NPCs smart or
> >> not?), plot depth, possibilities of cheating like JPMorris did with U7SI,
> >> and so on...
> >
> >We've played the latter, and once started to play the former--the main
> >drawback, that we saw, was the movement speed. Everything else (graphics
> >and the like) we could have lived with... but the movement speed, after a
> >long enough time, was unbearable. Granted, our attempts to uncover as much
> >about the map that could be covered (up to and including going around
> >Candlekeep in each direction, as far as we were able) may have contributed
> >to the acuteness of this disadvantage.

*nods* Sometimes it does take a while to completely explore a map. We
did that with all of them (to make perty screenshot maps). At least,
until we discovered a better way to do it. That was much later tho.

> >Sadly, in reference to plot depth and the like, we didn't get very far, and
> >so can't say much--if anything--about it. Sorry.

It is whole bunches of good. That is my one comment on the game in
general. My short list of favorites includes BG/ToSC/SoA/ToB (as well
as Fallout/Fallout2, Planescape: Torment, and Knights of the Old
Republic/The Sith Lords (even if that is a somewhat dorky title after
having finished it), among a few others).

> The most fun thing I remember about it was the way assassins show up in
> various towns to kill you - reminded me a bit of U5 and the way towns
> might not be safe there.

I also enjoyed the way things in the world changed because of your
actions. There is still a ways to go before this is perfected I know,
but to me, this is a pretty big thing, even in small doses.

> There are a lot of side quests. Seems like there is a funny one about a
> chicken...

*nods* Indeed.

> I'd say it would be worth playing. No game yet lives up to U7 but that
> doesn't mean you should eschew all of them.

I enjoyed BG quite a bit, and agree with the worth playing comment.

I do not agree with the 'no game yet lives up to U7' comment. To try
and compare/contrast with U7 is something akin (in my mind) to trying to
compare/contrast a movie with the book it is based on. They are -not-
the same thing, and you will just end up with less hair if you try.

-thehawk
Fallen Angel Dragon, UDIC
 
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"Chris Craig" <usenet@ciotog.net> wrote in message
news:pan.2005.02.25.06.50.25.254941@ciotog.net...
> The Triad wrote:
>
>>> There's a "run" mode, where the characters race around instead of
>>> walking. It certainly speeds things up, although it takes a bit of the
>>> realism away from the game.
>>
>> Doesn't that also speed everyone else up, too?
>
> Just party members.

Hmm. Interesting.

> It's kinda funny to see how each of them scurries
> around - but PS:Torment was more fun in this regard.

Ah, now /there's/ a great game. *smiles*

....we have to replay that some day... maybe this time stay as a fighter the
whole way through, instead of constantly switching between the three; could
help with gaining status points (or whatever they were called... argh,
cannot remember).

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<snip>
> Still, they're better than any Ultima fan-fiction.

Even Shadow of Light's work? [smiley] o_O [/smiley]

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I asked questions about Planescape Torment in another thread. Now I want
to ask the same about Baldur's Gate.

Any party in Baldur's Gate?
Any player stats which grow due to training or combat victories?
Are NPCs alive?
Are all items in the world - usable?
How many NPCs to talk are there? U7 has up to 200.

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On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 04:43:49 +0300, "Moscow Dragon"
<maxim__s@mtu-net.ru> wrote:

> I asked questions about Planescape Torment in another thread. Now I want
>to ask the same about Baldur's Gate.
>
>Any party in Baldur's Gate?
Yes. You have your main character, plus up to five other NPCs who will
follow you around. From memory, there are about 15 or so NPCs who will
join up with you, so you can configure your party to your taste.

>Any player stats which grow due to training or combat victories?
Baldur's Gate is based on the 2nd Edition AD&D rules system, so your
stats don't go up (unless you find special magic items). It's a
class-based system. You get experience points for completing quests
and defeating monsters; with enough XP you reach the next level and
your skills (e.g., swinging a sword, pickpocketing, or spellcasting)
increase.

>Are NPCs alive?
To some degree, but compared to the standard set by U7 they are pretty
static. Almost all NPC movement and actions are triggered by the PC;
although there are a few exceptions, there are no time-based
schedules. If you meet NPC X in the tavern at the beginning of the
game, there's a high likelihood he'll be in the exact same spot at the
end of the game too.

>Are all items in the world - usable?
Not in the sense that you probably mean, i.e., the incredible world
interaction of Ultima 7. There are a number of items that can be
picked up and put in your inventory (e.g., potions, wands, weapons,
rings, etc.) but there's little other than that. Doors and the
occassional switch, that's pretty much it. The Baldur's Gate engine is
very pretty but, for the most part, it's a static bitmap that your
onscreen avatars walk across.

>How many NPCs to talk are there? U7 has up to 200.
A lot; the NPC count in Baldur's Gate probably equals or very likely
exceeds U7. However, a number of the NPCs (such as a goodly percentage
of the people in most taverns) are "filler" characters that are only
there to make the room look more crowded; they only respond with
1-line "barks". Futhermore, the more talkative NPCs are -for the most
part- all business; they mostly only talked about the various quests
they wanted you to fulfill. I never got the feeling, playing BG, of a
"living world" of the Ultimas, as the NPCs never seemed to have any
sort of life of their own (having said that, some of the
characterizations in BG are quite amusing).

Ultimately, though, Baldurs Gate and Ultima 7 are quite different
games and one really can't compare the two. If you are in the mood for
an RPG set in a "living world", you may be better off with something
like the Gothic series.
 
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On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 04:43:49 +0300, "Moscow Dragon" <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru>
wrote:

> I asked questions about Planescape Torment in another thread. Now I want
>to ask the same about Baldur's Gate.
>
>Any party in Baldur's Gate?
>Any player stats which grow due to training or combat victories?
>Are NPCs alive?
>Are all items in the world - usable?
>How many NPCs to talk are there? U7 has up to 200.

BG uses the same engine as PS:T so everything previously said applies.

--
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http://home.comcast.net/~safehex/
 
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On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 06:34:56 -0600, Michael Cecil
<macecil@comcast.net> wrote:

>
>BG uses the same engine as PS:T so everything previously said applies.

No, PS:T uses the same engine as BG! :)
 
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On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 17:45:31 GMT, Spalls Hurgenson <yoinks@ebalu.com>
wrote:

>On Mon, 14 Mar 2005 06:34:56 -0600, Michael Cecil
><macecil@comcast.net> wrote:
>
>>
>>BG uses the same engine as PS:T so everything previously said applies.
>
>No, PS:T uses the same engine as BG! :)

Well, okay.

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> >BG uses the same engine as PS:T so everything previously said applies.
>
> No, PS:T uses the same engine as BG! :)

Wow...

What about Fallout?

I once saw BG, PS:T, Fallout and U7s (both) as "best RPGs ever made". Can
somebody contribute to this list?

--
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Quoth Moscow Dragon <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru>:
[]
> I once saw BG, PS:T, Fallout and U7s (both) as "best RPGs ever made". Can
> somebody contribute to this list?

U6 had a better conversation engine than U7, one of the reasons I
preferred it. And Wasteland. UW2, possibly, and while I haven't yet
played it myself, I know a lot of people rate Gothic.

I've also heard it suggested that Deus Ex is an RPG, but that, for my
money, isn't so. It's a FPS with RPG overtones, certainly, but the
emphasis is squarely on the combat rather than character interaction
and development.
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On Tue, 15 Mar 2005 03:41:54 +0300, "Moscow Dragon" <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru>
wrote:

>> >BG uses the same engine as PS:T so everything previously said applies.
>>
>> No, PS:T uses the same engine as BG! :)
>
>Wow...
>
>What about Fallout?

Different engine. I think I'd ask about side quests because all of these
games have lots of them. Let's see...object filled world - no, it is more
like BG in that regard. Stats - I think you gain exp points, level, then
dole out skill and stat points. NPC schedules - none. World size/number
of NPCs - big but not as large as U7. Hard to remember that really.
Heavy emphasis on turn-based tactical combat.

>I once saw BG, PS:T, Fallout and U7s (both) as "best RPGs ever made". Can
>somebody contribute to this list?

How about the Gothic games? I rank those right under U7. They're first
person games though. The world is not object oriented but since you're in
first person it feels much more real. You get exp pts from defeating
monsters and from doing quests, then can turn level points into skills.
NPCs definitely have schedules, although it may just be sleeping/sitting
on a bench/sleeping/etc. World size is smaller but it feels big since the
perspective is different.

--
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On Tue, 15 Mar 2005 01:27:12 -0000, Samurai
<Samurai@his.reply-to.header> wrote:

>Quoth Moscow Dragon <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru>:
>[]
>> I once saw BG, PS:T, Fallout and U7s (both) as "best RPGs ever made". Can
>> somebody contribute to this list?

>U6 had a better conversation engine than U7, one of the reasons I
>preferred it. And Wasteland. UW2, possibly, and while I haven't yet
>played it myself, I know a lot of people rate Gothic.

>I've also heard it suggested that Deus Ex is an RPG, but that, for my
>money, isn't so. It's a FPS with RPG overtones, certainly, but the
>emphasis is squarely on the combat rather than character interaction
>and development.

Unlike, say, Baldur's Gate or, for that matter, Ultima 5? Almost all
CRPGs put the emphasis squarely on combat. It is usually the primary
method of skill advancement (e.g., gaining XP) and the usual method of
resolving conflicts. The primary difference in Deus Ex (and similar
"action-RPG") is that they rely, at least in part, on the PLAYER'S
skill to determine the outcome of the combat (or or any other actions
the player character might take, such as lockpicking or sneaking)
rather than relying solely on stats and numbers.

Arguably, this is truer to the "ideal" of a role-playing game, where
the player gets to take the role of some other person without all the
(or less) abstraction forced upon him by traditional role-playing
systems. It changes the game from "I click on my "hide in shadows"
skill button; it rolls a 90% , yay, I'm invisible" to "I move my
on-screen avatar so he ducks from the shadow in the corner of the
room, runs crouched along the wall and rolls under the desk; yay, I
got past unseen."
 

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Quoth Spalls Hurgenson <yoinks@ebalu.com>:
[]
> >I've also heard it suggested that Deus Ex is an RPG, but that, for my
> >money, isn't so. It's a FPS with RPG overtones, certainly, but the
> >emphasis is squarely on the combat rather than character interaction
> >and development.
>
> Unlike, say, Baldur's Gate or, for that matter, Ultima 5? Almost all
> CRPGs put the emphasis squarely on combat. It is usually the primary
> method of skill advancement (e.g., gaining XP) and the usual method of
> resolving conflicts.

I see what you're saying, and you're right, they do -- but the best
ones are about more than battles. :)

Of course there's going to be some overlap; adventure games, especially
the Quest for Glory series, had a strong CRPG element -- in fact, QfG
was more an RPG than most top-down/isometric games described as such.
Conversely, I still don't consider games like Diablo and Nox to be
CRPGs, because not only the emphasis, but the raison d'etre of the
game, is fighting everything in your path.

This just demonstrates there isn't a single definition we can point to
and say, "This is what makes a CRPG." But I can still have opinions on
the matter, and the limits I put on what makes one are fairly tight.
:)

> The primary difference in Deus Ex (and similar
> "action-RPG") is that they rely, at least in part, on the PLAYER'S
> skill to determine the outcome of the combat (or or any other actions
> the player character might take, such as lockpicking or sneaking)
> rather than relying solely on stats and numbers.
>
> Arguably, this is truer to the "ideal" of a role-playing game, where
> the player gets to take the role of some other person without all the
> (or less) abstraction forced upon him by traditional role-playing
> systems.

I've never subscribed to the idea that every game is an RPG because
you're always playing the role of someone else. I don't see myself as
Max Payne or Lara Croft -- I merely direct their actions. When I play
proper RPGs, I /am/ my character (though he -- or she -- isn't always
me, of course). That was one of Ultima's great strengths: it made such
a view possible.

But in Deus Ex, I'm not JC Denton. I can change his appearance a bit,
but the fact remains he's a character in the story, not /my/ character.

> It changes the game from "I click on my "hide in shadows"
> skill button; it rolls a 90% , yay, I'm invisible" to "I move my
> on-screen avatar so he ducks from the shadow in the corner of the
> room, runs crouched along the wall and rolls under the desk; yay, I
> got past unseen."

As a veteran tabletop roleplayer, I think the abstraction of reality is
part of what the genre is about, unless one actually /is/ playing
oneself as a character. It's therefore required to some extent in
CRPGs, too.

In addition, CRPGs should offer a proper gameworld with locations the
player can revisit unless there's a good plot reason not to, and have
their eye on a higher goal that beating stuff up. Deus Ex offers the
latter in spades -- one of the reasons it's perhaps my very favourite
game -- but doesn't quite manage the former, alas.

YMMV, obviously. :)
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> This just demonstrates there isn't a single definition we can point to
> and say, "This is what makes a CRPG." But I can still have opinions on

Conversations with NPCs + your personal stats.
Is it a good definition?

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Quoth Moscow Dragon <maxim__s@mtu-net.ru>:
> > This just demonstrates there isn't a single definition we can point
> > to and say, "This is what makes a CRPG."
>
> Conversations with NPCs + your personal stats. Is it a good definition?

Diablo II features both those, yet remains a graphical Rogue-like
rather than a true CRPG, IMHO. Deus Ex also does -- I've set out my
views on that already. :)
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Archived from groups: rec.games.computer.ultima.series (More info?)

Samurai wrote:

> Quoth Spalls Hurgenson <yoinks@ebalu.com>:
> []
>> >I've also heard it suggested that Deus Ex is an RPG, but that, for my
>> >money, isn't so. It's a FPS with RPG overtones, certainly, but the
>> >emphasis is squarely on the combat rather than character interaction
>> >and development.
>>
>> Unlike, say, Baldur's Gate or, for that matter, Ultima 5? Almost all
>> CRPGs put the emphasis squarely on combat. It is usually the primary
>> method of skill advancement (e.g., gaining XP) and the usual method of
>> resolving conflicts.
>
> I see what you're saying, and you're right, they do -- but the best
> ones are about more than battles. :)
>
> Of course there's going to be some overlap; adventure games, especially
> the Quest for Glory series, had a strong CRPG element -- in fact, QfG
> was more an RPG than most top-down/isometric games described as such.
> Conversely, I still don't consider games like Diablo and Nox to be
> CRPGs, because not only the emphasis, but the raison d'etre of the
> game, is fighting everything in your path.
>
> This just demonstrates there isn't a single definition we can point to
> and say, "This is what makes a CRPG." But I can still have opinions on
> the matter, and the limits I put on what makes one are fairly tight.
> :)
>
>> The primary difference in Deus Ex (and similar
>> "action-RPG") is that they rely, at least in part, on the PLAYER'S
>> skill to determine the outcome of the combat (or or any other actions
>> the player character might take, such as lockpicking or sneaking)
>> rather than relying solely on stats and numbers.
>>
>> Arguably, this is truer to the "ideal" of a role-playing game, where
>> the player gets to take the role of some other person without all the
>> (or less) abstraction forced upon him by traditional role-playing
>> systems.
>
> I've never subscribed to the idea that every game is an RPG because
> you're always playing the role of someone else. I don't see myself as
> Max Payne or Lara Croft -- I merely direct their actions. When I play
> proper RPGs, I /am/ my character (though he -- or she -- isn't always
> me, of course). That was one of Ultima's great strengths: it made such
> a view possible.
>
> But in Deus Ex, I'm not JC Denton. I can change his appearance a bit,
> but the fact remains he's a character in the story, not /my/ character.

I was going to disagree on the strength of the fact that you can 'adjust'
the cast (i.e. choosing whether various characters live or die, or when)
but ultimately you're right. Although it allows many different approaches
and your relationship with the NPCs can vary considerably, ultimately you
aren't really in control of how the game flows.

> In addition, CRPGs should offer a proper gameworld with locations the
> player can revisit unless there's a good plot reason not to, and have
> their eye on a higher goal that beating stuff up. Deus Ex offers the
> latter in spades -- one of the reasons it's perhaps my very favourite
> game -- but doesn't quite manage the former, alas.

I must admit, the inability to revisit the entire world was one of the
things that was a letdown in Deus Ex. Particularly since it stores all
the data for the map locations that you can't ever visit again.. which
results in gigabytes of redundant savegame data without really trying.

>
> YMMV, obviously. :)

--
JP Morris - aka DOUG the Eagle (Dragon) -=UDIC=- jpm@it-he.org
Fun things to do with the Ultima games http://www.it-he.org
Reign of the Just - An Ultima clone http://rotj.it-he.org
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Samurai

Distinguished
Jun 20, 2002
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Archived from groups: rec.games.computer.ultima.series (More info?)

Quoth J. P. Morris <jpm@it-he.org>:
> Samurai wrote:
[]
> > But in Deus Ex, I'm not JC Denton. I can change his appearance a bit,
> > but the fact remains he's a character in the story, not /my/ character.
>
> I was going to disagree on the strength of the fact that you can 'adjust'
> the cast (i.e. choosing whether various characters live or die, or when)
> but ultimately you're right. Although it allows many different approaches
> and your relationship with the NPCs can vary considerably, ultimately you
> aren't really in control of how the game flows.

Indeed. At certain points, certain things must happen, and the player
has no control of them whatsoever.

> > In addition, CRPGs should offer a proper gameworld with locations the
> > player can revisit unless there's a good plot reason not to, and have
> > their eye on a higher goal that beating stuff up. Deus Ex offers the
> > latter in spades -- one of the reasons it's perhaps my very favourite
> > game -- but doesn't quite manage the former, alas.
>
> I must admit, the inability to revisit the entire world was one of the
> things that was a letdown in Deus Ex. Particularly since it stores all
> the data for the map locations that you can't ever visit again.. which
> results in gigabytes of redundant savegame data without really trying.

I did initially wonder why my old 20GB hard-disk was suddenly so full,
before I spotted how big some of those savegames were. <:)

Levels are the thing. A game that comes in levels must have each one
end in only a few different ways, or the next level won't make any
sense. That's the way most FPS games operate, but it's pretty alien to
the idea of shaping one's own destiny, as you pointed out with regard
to controlling game flow.

That said, it didn't disappoint me too much WRT Deus Ex, because I took
it for a FPS -- and viewed as such, it had unparalleled depth and
complexity. It just wasn't a terribly effective RPG. :)
--
___________________________________________________________
\^\^//
,^ ( ..) Samurai Dragon -==UDIC Sig Code==-
| \ \ -==(UDIC)==- d++e+N T--Om+U146MA7'! L8u uC++
\ `^--^ \\\\\\\/////// uF-uG++uLB+uA+nC++uR nH+nP+++
\ \ \ (2 Attentive Points) nI--nPT nS+++nT--wM-wC y+ a29
ksj ^--^ ___________________________________________________________