Jump to content


Photo

Now that it's done: the Good, the Bad


  • Please log in to reply
67 replies to this topic

#1 Future Markus

Future Markus

    Arcadia Native

  • Istrum
  • PipPipPip
  • 122 posts

Posted 25 July 2016 - 05:44

Thought I'd jot down my thoughts about DFC as a whole now that it's over. I decided to replay the whole game after it came out (hence why it took me two weeks to finish it after B5 came out).
 
Things I love about DFC:
  • Visuals This game is just gorgeous. I still can't believe the environment and character design came from just a handful of artists.
  • Characters Even the minor characters are great. Nela! Queenie! Sully! Ulvic!
  • Environments Getting to explore Propast, Marcuria, and the Enclave was a real treat. Background conversations added a lot of depth to these places.
  • Voice Acting Seriously, did they start putting steroids in the water supply in voice actor town? DF's voice actors sound like The Room by comparison to this. A special shoutout to Charlotte Richie, Zoe's voice actor, who is simply phenomenal.
  • Closure I really want to thank the team for giving us a proper ending. It may not have addressed every burning question or worked out quite the way we wanted but it got the job done. So so many games in the past ten years have had confused, illogical, and even downright strange endings; you'd think our medium was cursed. Even LiS wobbled aggressively towards the end. But DFC delivered, and even made sure we had pleeeeeenty of denouement, which games tend to skimp on.
 
Things I do not love about DFC:
  • Pacing Having just played all five books in a row, I really noticed that the story's arc drags at times. Perhaps half of the story is spent setting up the actual events we're here for. I'm all for worldbuilding but the flow is clearly inconsistent.
  • Music Don't get me wrong -- the music in and of itself is solid. But 2 hours of music stretched over a 20 hour game, and it starts to get. very. repetitive. This is more a symptom of the game's length, I guess. But by contrast, LiS really nailed the music, and that worked out substantially to its favor.
  • Animation I think this is tough for indie devs in general (mocap too expensive). Better than DF, to be sure, but still meh. If anything in this game broke immersion, it was those moments of wonky animation.
  • Episodic Structure I imagine we all agree on this point, but this didn't work out well for the final product. It let RTG make the game more, so yay? But it also served to make the story's progression less cohesive (eg. it made it almost impossible to foreshadow major plot points).
  • Separate Threads Having three characters with three detached stories (until the very end) made it harder to engage fully with any one character. By way of contrast, in DF, we barely see any other characters before Zoe ends up in Arcadia, and she gets there because the story has been leading her towards April.
  • Amnesiac Zoe This didn't serve the story in any way, except to forestall its progress. Plus, it happens twice. :<
  • Emotional Connection I really wish I understood why, but I just didn't have much; not in the way I did with TLJ and DF. I feel like I'm missing out on the emotional moments others experienced playing this game... There was only one moment that tugged at my heartstrings. Maybe it was the seriously prolonged release process. 
I still like DFC. I would buy it again if I could! But I can't deny that I didn't have the connection to it that I thought I would, given how much I loved DF & TLJ. Oh well, I guess that's how it goes....

  • khh, Carla, Mr_Russ and 8 others like this

#2 Future Markus

Future Markus

    Arcadia Native

  • Istrum
  • PipPipPip
  • 122 posts

Posted 26 July 2016 - 05:51

Others? How would you break down your experience?

#3 the red of the kin

the red of the kin

    Vestrum Herald

  • Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1067 posts
  • LocationTrieste (Italy)

Posted 26 July 2016 - 06:30

Oh I wouldn't change much your lists, except I'd probably add a pro: the story itself, which is nothing short of original, brilliant and extremely engaging.

 

I'd also add a con, where I think April's character would go. It's not about "letting go", since I was already done at the end of DF:TLJ, but about how she is again inserted in DFC. It's a personal problem, not an objective review ;)

Already talked extensively about elsewhere, so no need to do it here :)


  • bongboy and Future Markus like this

IF YOU'RE A GHOST.......JUST LEAVE ME BE!


#4 Pawlo_86

Pawlo_86

    Harbinger of the Balance

  • Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2725 posts
  • LocationPoland

Posted 26 July 2016 - 07:53

I pretty like Dreamer Cycle. Its big and complcated story which is a build-up for larger saga. My own interpretation of the story is that when Undreaming was unleashed in 1933 it started threat the worlds. Its main goal was destroy The Dream. It possesed some characters, nations and creatures to complete the plan. Azadi Tower was some kind of weapon supposed to destroy Magic while Eingana was supposed to "un-dream" the universe. Zoe as Dreamer fixed all of this and reunited Dreaming with Undreaming. Dreamer Cycle feels like a second chapter in three-part saga and some threads are unresolved. Dreamer Cycle is interesting story, great characters and huge space for imagination.

#5 Future Markus

Future Markus

    Arcadia Native

  • Istrum
  • PipPipPip
  • 122 posts

Posted 27 July 2016 - 07:47

Oh, one small thing I might note is that the Dreamer Cycle ended up with a story structure that's perhaps too reminiscent of the Shifter Cycle (undreaming = chaos vortex, Protagonists must slog towards a tower where it all ends, the world will end if they fail, evil mastermind is associated with a military power in Arcadia and a powerful corporation in Stark, something is slipping between the worlds which is resolved at the end of the story, and so on). DF was originally trying to go in a very different direction from TLJ; DFC eventually dragged it back to the same narrative style.

 

It's not a bad story by any means! It's just a bit more similar than I'd have liked.


  • bongboy, Rowan37, Hellegennes and 1 other like this

#6 CmputrBlu

CmputrBlu

    Rubber Ducky

  • Vestrum
  • Pip
  • 25 posts

Posted 08 September 2016 - 06:19

Others? How would you break down your experience?

I finished the game not long after the last chapter was released. For the most part I think it was satisfactory there are few things that sorta stand out as a negative to me.

 

1. I'm not entirely happy with Zoe's journey in this and how things ended for her. Not sure if there are different endings for her story depending on what choices you made; but considering who she was and her abilities; her ending sames pretty mundane. Not that there isn't anything wrong with being a wife and a mother; but in many ways it's like watching  scene get cut off in mid-stream. Unless she lost her powers (and Saga's comment about her implies that's not the case) what happens next? What happens to her child?  Was  there an after credit scene I missed maybe? Since this is suppose to be the end of Zoe's story; I couldn't help but feel "that's it?!" when it was all over.

 

2. I'm not sure I like episodic gaming as a concept as much as I might have before. The wait between episodes breaks up the flow the of the story. it's not like next week there is a new episode; it's like waiting to see what happens next season. Also there is always the possibility that things will not end the way you had hoped and this is made worse if you see things going not the way you would like. The wait time just makes it too easy for the player to lose interest if that happens.  I think I would have prefer, at least int he case of DFC, to have waited till the game was complete.

 

3. I can't help but think that a lot of the questions players had and contemplated after DF really weren't answered satisfactorily. I haven't scanned through the forum in a long while, but I'm sure I'm not the only one with lingering questions. Definitely have to replay the last chapter.


"A dream within a dream - I'm impressed."


#7 cantabile

cantabile

    Rubber Ducky

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 10 September 2016 - 00:59

...

  • Emotional Connection I really wish I understood why, but I just didn't have much; not in the way I did with TLJ and DF. I feel like I'm missing out on the emotional moments others experienced playing this game... There was only one moment that tugged at my heartstrings. Maybe it was the seriously prolonged release process. 
I still like DFC. I would buy it again if I could! But I can't deny that I didn't have the connection to it that I thought I would, given how much I loved DF & TLJ. Oh well, I guess that's how it goes....

 

I agree with what you said and especially the last bit. Emotional connection would have redeemed the technical flaws of the game but it didn't happen this time.

I cried and laughed (a lot) in several parts of Dreamfall. It was heartbreaking at times. Zoe and Faith in the doll house for example. In DFC, well, it didn't touch me.

- The ending's like a windbag going pufffff. Predictable and far fetched at the same time.

- Zoe is disappointing (and God knows I was fascinated by this character in Dreamfall). She wanders here and there without real purpose and is driven by accidents rather than by her own decisions. Kian is still boring and even Crow is a bit dull.

- Furthermore, like in bad tv series, some dead people aren't really dead, and there's way too much of 'oh, oh, it was just dream' or convenient alternate realities. It looks so fake, at times, such an easy way to get out of a tight corner without really getting into it. Dream was a much more serious thing in TLJ and DF, much more complex than this pseudo-scientific plot.

- And finally: the vilain(s)! God, couldn't they have found something better than that? I won't spoil it but that was the most disappointing part of the whole plot in the three games. All this journey, 17 years from TLJ... to get there! Come on...

 

Overall, although it was pleasant to visit once more Arcadia and Stark, to talk to Crow or Shitbot, I'm disappointed. It is true that many questions are not answered but seeing the answers I actually got, I don't feel like looking for more. Maybe R. Tornquist waited too long before releasing this game. Maybe the story lost its momentum and got cold during the long wait. I don't know. It lost its magic - and that's a sad thing.

 

But Dreamfall (not chapters) still is the best game I've ever played and a hell of a good story. So, I will play it once more and forget Chapters.



#8 ChrisR

ChrisR

    Arcadia Native

  • Shifter
  • PipPipPip
  • 303 posts
  • LocationRussia

Posted 10 September 2016 - 01:15

I have mixed feeling about this game. It wasn't what I hoped it would be. It also is not on the same level of first 2 installments which were masterpieces. Did I want anything to be changed in first 2 games? Not really. Do I have issues with DFC? Lots of.
Let's see. Big NOs:
- Zoe swearing right from the very beginning. Games are art like books and I don't want unnecessary swearing in my books.
- Kian swearing. Really? He used to be so noble and well mannered. Out of character.
- Making Likho gay. Whaat? This plotline with being friends with someone who killed your family member is already sick and questionable, but making some people ship them as a couple? Ew. Also poor April wasted her time dating gay person as if she didn't suffer enough.
- Anna's character is a complete disappointment. She began as an interesting mysterious character, and ended up being some obsessed stalker with no significant purpose.
- puzzles are weird and too easy at times. "thanks" for cutting 2 of them in revised beginning.
- All this memory loss thing was soooo anticlimactic considering how Zoe "remembered" was done.
- First couple of episodes are too slow and feel like spinoff, because Dreamfall's plot is abandoned for a long time.
- Important characters from Dreamfall are killed off. OK...
- Huge mystery "find April, save April" is not explained! How exactly did Zoe save her? We don't know. Terrible.
- Many other big questions are not answered like who Queenie was. I want to see her again. I felt lack of resolution with Reza as well for example - the game made a big deal out of Zoe-Reza relationship, but instead of resolution we get Reza's cameo in the end.
- Killing rats and setting people on fire.
- Some choices surprisingly didn't have consequences.
- No details about how exactly Saga is able to save the day.


After all this criticism I just need to say positive things: amazing voice acting, good music, good dialogues, the game looks beautiful, Crow is one of the best parts, some magical moments in book 4 with adventure spirit, touching epilogue. There was a number of things I enjoyed.
Would I recommend this game? Sadly no.
  • the red of the kin and Starseeker like this

#9 the red of the kin

the red of the kin

    Vestrum Herald

  • Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1067 posts
  • LocationTrieste (Italy)

Posted 10 September 2016 - 08:13

I have mixed feeling about this game. It wasn't what I hoped it would be. It also is not on the same level of first 2 installments which were masterpieces. Did I want anything to be changed in first 2 games? Not really. Do I have issues with DFC? Lots of.
Let's see. Big NOs:
- Zoe swearing right from the very beginning. Games are art like books and I don't want unnecessary swearing in my books.
- Kian swearing. Really? He used to be so noble and well mannered. Out of character.
- Making Likho gay. Whaat? This plotline with being friends with someone who killed your family member is already sick and questionable, but making some people ship them as a couple? Ew. Also poor April wasted her time dating gay person as if she didn't suffer enough.
- Anna's character is a complete disappointment. She began as an interesting mysterious character, and ended up being some obsessed stalker with no significant purpose.
- puzzles are weird and too easy at times. "thanks" for cutting 2 of them in revised beginning.
- All this memory loss thing was soooo anticlimactic considering how Zoe "remembered" was done.
- First couple of episodes are too slow and feel like spinoff, because Dreamfall's plot is abandoned for a long time.
- Important characters from Dreamfall are killed off. OK...
- Huge mystery "find April, save April" is not explained! How exactly did Zoe save her? We don't know. Terrible.
- Many other big questions are not answered like who Queenie was. I want to see her again. I felt lack of resolution with Reza as well for example - the game made a big deal out of Zoe-Reza relationship, but instead of resolution we get Reza's cameo in the end.
- Killing rats and setting people on fire.
- Some choices surprisingly didn't have consequences.
- No details about how exactly Saga is able to save the day.


After all this criticism I just need to say positive things: amazing voice acting, good music, good dialogues, the game looks beautiful, Crow is one of the best parts, some magical moments in book 4 with adventure spirit, touching epilogue. There was a number of things I enjoyed.
Would I recommend this game? Sadly no.

 

I don't see  problem with Likho being gay...and..well he might be bisexual you know.

The rest: I agree with most of it actually. But in my opinion It doesn't bring the game down. the game's still good :)


  • Starseeker likes this

IF YOU'RE A GHOST.......JUST LEAVE ME BE!


#10 conundra

conundra

    Rubber Ducky

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 35 posts

Posted 18 September 2016 - 13:42

I like the happy ending for Zoe. for all the things that happened to her,it was nice to see a sweet one and many characters didn't get that. I'm sad April left for good although parts of her live in Saga, they are different individuals.
Although I felt the climax of the game is kind of anticlimactic. I was hoping Kian will face and take revenge by killing Vamon but he was left to the magicals. It was satisfying to watch anyway.
At the end, there are a lot of loose ends tied up but still some questions not yet answered. Like Etta, why did she leave? And where did she go? Why did Cortez bring Brian to Arcadia? What is Cortez and what is his true role in all of this? What happened to the Vanguards and Jacob McAllen?
I hope the story can continue.



#11 janos666

janos666

    Rubber Ducky

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 5 posts

Posted 15 October 2016 - 14:25

Well, after having seen how the "episodic" scheme ruined some small titles and ridiculed some big ones, I was never overly optimistic about Dreamfall Chapters. "Yeah, sure, make this new Dreamfall/TLJ game episodic because that worked out so well for most of the studios which tried that [line ending in an evil laugh which turns into sad mumbling]."
My all time favorit (sarcastically in this regard but literally in other term) is Half-Life 2 - Aftermath, an expansion which Valve (a well established, experienced, financially strong company) decided to break down into 3 episodes because they (like many others around 2005) though this is the future of single-player gaming. But it wasn't really successful. The two episodes were great but came with excessive delays and it felt like a traditional expansion would have provided a better experience overall, especially since Episode 3 never materialized, thus the story remained incomplete.
I thought (after 2008 or so) it became plain obvious how this concept is more likely a recipe for failure, especially since "normal sized" games with small additional DLCs seemed to be successful (and that was before it became a bad habit to cut some finished content and release it later as a paid DLC, the first paid DLCs back then were actual extensions, new content finished after the game's release).
 
After playing Book 1 shortly (but not right after) it's release, I considered it a "conceptional prototype demo" because it felt very short, somewhat "empty" (in a sense of lacking both "emotional substance" and real gameplay elements) and unpolished (performance issues, etc). But it was very promising still! So, I patiently waited for the last Book and then some patches to resolve any newfound bugs before playing. (I considered waiting for some "remaster" edition which re-bases all the books into a more integrated game but that didn't seem likely, so I decided I have waited enough and jumped for v5.3)
 
I was unpleasantly surprised they trimmed down the beginning of Book 1 so crudely but didn't make the rest of Book 1 more "fluid" in terms of gameplay.
 
Unity 5 is still slow (at least with AMD hardware and their notoriously weak OpenGL drivers) and the game itself doesn't seem like it tried to work around it's limitations (like omitting some effects and/or assets from the concept art, or shrinking the view distance by obstacles on the maps, etc --- I am not an expert on Unity or computer graphics in general but Unity seems to hate things like the Oular city, yet RTG didn't shy away from going with that design - I can relate to the developers and might have done the same myself but it was still painful to play with stuttering or in a window rather than fullscreen).
 
The whole gameplay is incredibly slow. There is a lot of dead pause between scenes and sentences, and then also a decent amount of loading screens. Also, some puzzles are very slow by design:
- the road to the underground warehouse (keep pushing the leavers Zöe!)
- the room where you have to click on certain items several times before something happens (Yeah, it's not "fun" to figure out how you need to keep smashing mouse1. I had to read a walkthrough for that. Did you know it's a definition of insanity when somebody keeps repeating the same experiment and continues to expect a different outcome after the first few runs resulted in the same? So, yeah, I guess I just wasn't insane enough to figure that one out on my own...)
- running back and forth several times on the same track on a very limited map (mostly happens in Marcuria with Kian)
This gave me the impression that developers tried to artificially extend the playtime. I mean, thinking back, TLJ and Dreamfall had a similar pace but this time it felt too artificial for me (happens too often on a large scale).
 
And I hate to say this but sometimes it felt too much of an interactive movie rather than a game. I know this comes with the game style and the way this particular game likes to tell it's story but I think it was a little unbalanced. It's like the developers didn't sweat to try and integrate as many story elements into the gameplay and puzzles as possible but rather went for the story cutscenes + somewhat related puzzles or exploration mix by design. This is perfectly normal for let's say an "AAA" shooter game but I had a feeling this game was supposed to be about interactions and gameplay actions ("choices" if you go by the buzzword) affecting the world. But I didn't really feel like it was extensive and organic enough. I didn't feel like I am building the story with my actions. I think all this concept was focused on the dialog choices, while I think actual gameplay should be more important than suspended dialog choices. And I didn't really have the illusion of my choices making a difference. Many games offer no real difference, yet they make me feel like they did (like modern Bioware RPGs, Mass Effect and Dragon Age: lots of choices, no real difference but you have a feeling of "ruling the world" around you).
 
 
Saga is great example of how you can't write yourself out of plotholes or corners by introducing yet another.
She was a lovely, magical character in a perfect setup, but she is practically an impossible pawn of an unknown entity. She is a physical manifestation of "deus ex machina". A magical tool which openly puts everything into an impossible place, so that a story can play out as planned (although: planned by who...?). It's not a simple "fourth wall break". She is visible and sort of interactive to both the audience and the characters at the same time as a "supernatural alien" (thus, should be breaking their respective fourth wall, even inside the game's world) while she artificially re-arranges the stage/world (a stage for the audience, reality for the characters) according to some divine plot (what plot though?). She is like a ragdoll of some kind of God who wishes to be seen by the "mortals", indirectly but at plain sight (though not directly).
She is like a joke from The Color of Magic (Terry Pratchett): You don't actually explain anything by revealing that the huge elephants which hold the Diskworld on their backs are standing on a gigantic turtle.
Saga explains nothing. Her story is interesting and nicely written but completely redundant.
 
If anything, she introduces more plotholes: I thought human-like creatures (even those with strong magic) are constrained by linear tracks in terms of riding though time. Some entities might be able to glimpse into the future/past by seeing through the recurring cycles rather than experiencing it as a straight line but they are still physically constrained to flow with time like a train runs on it's tracks and not on open fields or thin air. Saga and April were supposed be able to travel between worlds but not through time (not willingly, at least). Yet, a young April somehow met an old Saga who was born around the time April died and Saga inherited a piece of April. Come again...? I think this is simple textbook paradox, an unresolved problem of a time traveler sci-fi story which was not an integral part of the games (or I missed that). May be I missed or forgot something which should allow me to make sense of this but it seems like a simple plothole patched by "ex machina". It feels like all of this had to be way too convenient, with Saga being the only "loose end" (who is controlled directly and exclusively by some "God" or "Faith" which the game simply does not wish to explain or reveal in full detail).
 
I couldn't fully understand how the Undreaming and Westhouse "corrupted" each-other in such a destructive way. He decided, out of desperation while being drunk and potentially having a mental breakdown, that the only logical solution for the problem is to become the evil master of the universe and reshape the whole existence, in order to get back home and live a normal human life in Stark. Yeah... I mean... even a drunk fool could see how that's far from a viable plan. You don't just become a God, alter the universe and then simply go home, have a drink and think about getting married. This could make due for a mad diabolical plot of an insane "villan" (let's say Joker from Batman) but this was for all the wrong reasons and he seemed intelligent and sane enough to realize that.
And it seems like his refined goal was to become God and rule rather than to go home but it wasn't really discussed or revealed how he developed and where he really stands at the end.
A side note: I am not sure we were supposed to know Brian is the prophet (masks and all that) but it was sort of obvious for me (even when we followed him in Dreamfall: TLJ).
 
And how could I forget blabbing about that suicide bombing scene... I was so mad, I thought about rage-quitting and un-installing the whole game!
I immediately realized what's about to happen, so I turned back and ran THE OTHER WAY.
Yet, the next cutscene showed me running straight into the explosion. -> WHAT? Who the hell would run into an explosion? How does that make any sense?
And despite what Zöe might have supposed to think there (probably: "let's save her" -> but how exactly?), it felt like the game gave me a choice (I could seemingly turn back) but then took it back (showed me running to the opposing direction) and laughed at my face (I got blown up anyway)!
 
 
Even this v5.3 version felt like a decent Beta version of a game and I wondered how good it could be if they polished it for completion. It's like it needs a heavily re-cut but at least a good polish (which will probably never happen and doesn't even matter now).
 
To say some good things, the music was pretty good and the Engine Room in Marcuria is a stunningly nice design (I took a screenshot and will probably use it as a desktop wallpaper for some time). :)
(Although, reflecting back to the first paragraph, it reminded me too much to the Citadel from HL2. :D)
 
Even though I focused on the bad parts here, I still enjoyed the game overall (and I can't remember the exact number [it was so long ago] but I barely paid something like 10 USD on Humble when it was discounted, so it was definitely worth every cents...).


#12 Riaise

Riaise

    Vestrum Crier

  • Minstrum
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 664 posts
  • LocationEngland

Posted 15 October 2016 - 15:26

If anything, she introduces more plotholes: I thought human-like creatures (even those with strong magic) are constrained by linear tracks in terms of riding though time. Some entities might be able to glimpse into the future/past by seeing through the recurring cycles rather than experiencing it as a straight line but they are still physically constrained to flow with time like a train runs on it's tracks and not on open fields or thin air. Saga and April were supposed be able to travel between worlds but not through time (not willingly, at least). Yet, a young April somehow met an old Saga who was born around the time April died and Saga inherited a piece of April. Come again...? I think this is simple textbook paradox, an unresolved problem of a time traveler sci-fi story which was not an integral part of the games (or I missed that). May be I missed or forgot something which should allow me to make sense of this but it seems like a simple plothole patched by "ex machina". It feels like all of this had to be way too convenient, with Saga being the only "loose end" (who is controlled directly and exclusively by some "God" or "Faith" which the game simply does not wish to explain or reveal in full detail).

 

I agree about Saga being a bit "Deus ex Machina". I feel like a little bit more explanation of why she does what she does or where the prophecies come from could have helped a lot. However, I think that the "time-travel" elements do actually work due to the nature of the House of All Worlds, where Saga was born. Time seems to flow linearly within the house itself, but you can travel to and from any point in time outside of it. Which is how April can visit the house when Saga is old, despite younger Saga having visited Arcadia after April had died. Basically, it's not Saga herself who is controlling the time travel, it is that the house lies at a point outside of time.

 

And how could I forget blabbing about that suicide bombing scene... I was so mad, I thought about rage-quitting and un-installing the whole game!
I immediately realized what's about to happen, so I turned back and ran THE OTHER WAY.
Yet, the next cutscene showed me running straight into the explosion. -> WHAT? Who the hell would run into an explosion? How does that make any sense?
And despite what Zöe might have supposed to think there (probably: "let's save her" -> but how exactly?), it felt like the game gave me a choice (I could seemingly turn back) but then took it back (showed me running to the opposing direction) and laughed at my face (I got blown up anyway)!

 

This isn't right. The game originally played out that way (it would show Zoë running towards Nela whichever way you had gone), but after people pointed this out, it was changed and there was an alternate cutscene if you ran away. Here is Ragnar's post confirming this. It must have been reverted, possibly accidentally, in a later update.

 

Even this v5.3 version felt like a decent Beta version of a game and I wondered how good it could be if they polished it for completion. It's like it needs a heavily re-cut but at least a good polish (which will probably never happen and doesn't even matter now).

 

There is going to be a "complete edition" released at some point which will include all Kickstarter rewards and will probably have had some editing, although we don't know how extensive that could be. Although judging by the beginning of Book One, they're certainly not averse altering sections of the game completely.


  • janos666 likes this

#13 janos666

janos666

    Rubber Ducky

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 5 posts

Posted 15 October 2016 - 19:22

This isn't right. The game originally played out that way (it would show Zoë running towards Nela whichever way you had gone), but after people pointed this out, it was changed and there was an alternate cutscene if you ran away. Here is Ragnar's post confirming this. It must have been reverted, possibly accidentally, in a later update.

 

May be it was a random glitch then. Or may be I didn't reach a point far enough, or my last motion vector / eyesight wasn't pointing into a direction which triggers that option.

 

It was a while ago but I clearly remember looking and moving away from the bomb when it went off. I am not sure about the exact distance and angle though.

I wasted some time before I realized I can move freely (rather than watching a cut-scene still or being able to move into a single preset direction only) and I might have made the very first steps towards the bomb before piecing these two facts together (the imminent explosion was a given but the ability to control Zoe was a slow iterative process due to the strange slow motion state which I expected to be part of a cut-scene first, then forced action second) and I felt like I was supposed to run into the bomb's direction (after all, the original goal was to follow her, period).

 

Coming to think of it, this whole bombing thing is just plain wrong. Very, very wrong!

 

Players in general are conditioned to blindly follow the instructions on the HUD (in this case, to "follow Nela" -- implicitly: anywhere, unconditionally, even into a recognizable trap, certain death, or worse... just do it! no questions, no alternatives...), since subordination in games against instructions coming directly from the game itself (on the HUD, not from in-game characters or texts which are part of the game's world) usually (I guess over 99% of the time) results in "game over" or "dead end" situations (may be easter eggs? but that's not relevant here...) rather than proving to be a viable alternative. You can't expect a game to offer unlimited choices in every possible situations at every places, so you learn to accept it's limits, recognize and blindly follow the forced paths (if you want to continue playing rather than quit for good, that is, but you usually wish to continue playing, unless the forced path is extremely disturbing for you and you recognize that before it's too late).

 

This quote from Ragnar makes it obvious the player was supposed to run into the explosion:

 

ADDENDUM: We were completely taken aback by the fact that some players didn't follow Nela. It just didn't occur to us that this would happen. Which is why we didn't cover for it. Lesson learned; people are COWARDS.

 

And now that we touched upon this issue, I realized what probably happened.

At first, I almost did what I was expected to do (according to Ragnar, I actually was, explicitly, not merely out of necessity due to the inherently limited nature of the game) because it didn't even occur to me I had a choice at all. Although, in a couple of seconds, I was able to think "out of the box", assess the situation rationally (while starting to move into the direction of the bomb, just realizing I am able to move at all), and even though I assumed there is no real alternative, I simply had to try and do the logical thing: turn, and run away from a bomb I cannot possibly stop from exploding. Though, I guess I subconsciously expected the game to show me the way of somehow defusing that bomb, possibly via some sort of magic (may be using "mind control" on Nela...?) since this slow motion was similar to the slow motion "time magic" previously used in Storytime. This probably also played a part of me looking at Nela for a short time before turning away: I gave some time for an "action icon" to show up over Nela before abandoning the hope of a possible solution. But then I finally did the only logical thing there is, although potentially too late.

 

All in all, I am absolutely certain that after realizing there is no other logical option, everybody should run away from the bomb. And the slow motion gives you some time to think this through in your subconscious mind (and realize this later consciously if you think about it).

If you didn't, then you were most probably misled by your natural reflexes to game mechanics and didn't even think this through (I guess it goes for ~99% of those who didn't run) or (no offense but imho) you were fooled (probably <1%). Running for Nela is a similar act to driving a car into the ocean because the GPS navigation instructed you to turn right and you did out of reflex of obeying a dumb navigator.

 

Neither a coward, nor a hero shall die in vain and not even Ragnar should exploit this reflex driven game<->player relationship to trick people into doing irrational things.

 

Though, I wonder if I qualify as a coward or not (according to Ragnar) if it was indeed the case during my play-through that allowed too much time for some solution to pop up (like and action icon to show up) before giving up and finally running away (potentially too late to get out unharmed).



#14 Riaise

Riaise

    Vestrum Crier

  • Minstrum
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 664 posts
  • LocationEngland

Posted 16 October 2016 - 13:43

All in all, I am absolutely certain that after realizing there is no other logical option, everybody should run away from the bomb. And the slow motion gives you some time to think this through in your subconscious mind (and realize this later consciously if you think about it).

 

Also, the game had already set up the fact that if you get caught in an explosion the game ends and you have to replay that part (as Kian, when blowing up the weapons on the docks). So, to suddenly expect players to run towards a bomb seems like odd logic to me.

 

But anyway, it seems like you didn't get far enough away before the cutscene began to trigger the "running away" version, rather than it being a bug.



#15 kla622

kla622

    Rubber Ducky

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 37 posts

Posted 16 October 2016 - 14:42


A side note: I am not sure we were supposed to know Brian is the prophet (masks and all that) but it was sort of obvious for me (even when we followed him in Dreamfall: TLJ).
 

 

Yeah... I don't think it was meant to be confirmed at that time, but it was most probably intended that the player considered Brian as the most likely identitiy of the Prophet. They didn't really make great lengths trying to hide it. Of course, there were many alternative identities floating around, expecting a twist which then never happened, but staying in the realms of possibility, I think Brian was the only plausible choice, and maybe Roper Klacks. (which thankfully, they built upon in DFC) I still liked this mystery though, even if it was more or less obvious, especially because his motives were completely unclear, which made the wait for the reveal exciting. Shame that we didn't get just a little bit more regarding his motivations...

 

I'm starting to think though that as much as I loved the prologue of Dreamfall (it was an amazing scene and seeing it again in DFC was a highlight), it was a mistake to include it then, because it was impossible not to suspect that Brian is up to no good after that. Maybe, in retrospect, a different scene that set up Storytime and the Undreaming, but didn't reveal Brian's involvement, could have been used. Brian was still suspicious enough when we meet him in person, but it wouldn't have been so obvious perhaps.



#16 LootHunter

LootHunter

    Fringe Café Regular

  • Banned
  • PipPip
  • 100 posts
  • LocationRussia, Moscow

Posted 17 October 2016 - 01:31

Yet, a young April somehow met an old Saga who was born around the time April died and Saga inherited a piece of April. Come again...? I think this is simple textbook paradox, an unresolved problem of a time traveler sci-fi story which was not an integral part of the games (or I missed that). May be I missed or forgot something which should allow me to make sense of this but it seems like a simple plothole patched by "ex machina".

Yes, you've completely missed that in TLJ young April meets old Saga. And post-credits scene in Dreamfal:TLJ, were Cortez saves Westhouse and tells him that time is a circle.

 

I couldn't fully understand how the Undreaming and Westhouse "corrupted" each-other in such a destructive way. He decided, out of desperation while being drunk and potentially having a mental breakdown, that the only logical solution for the problem is to become the evil master of the universe and reshape the whole existence, in order to get back home and live a normal human life in Stark. Yeah... I mean... even a drunk fool could see how that's far from a viable plan. You don't just become a God, alter the universe and then simply go home, have a drink and think about getting married. This could make due for a mad diabolical plot of an insane "villan" (let's say Joker from Batman) but this was for all the wrong reasons and he seemed intelligent and sane enough to realize that.
And it seems like his refined goal was to become God and rule rather than to go home but it wasn't really discussed or revealed how he developed and where he really stands at the end.
A side note: I am not sure we were supposed to know Brian is the prophet (masks and all that) but it was sort of obvious for me (even when we followed him in Dreamfall: TLJ).

Come to think of it in Dreamfall:TLJ Brian tells Zoe that he has been to Azadir and his visit was "very educating". So I think that explaination of his plan to eradicate the magicals is that in Azadir he was indoctrinated. Not by some villain, but by azadi beliefs themselves. They converted him to their faith and unwittingly created "the Prophet" who would lead them later.

However in essense you are right - how Brian became a follower to azadi religion is never shown in games properly.



#17 janos666

janos666

    Rubber Ducky

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 5 posts

Posted 18 October 2016 - 21:18

Yes, you've completely missed that in TLJ young April meets old Saga. And post-credits scene in Dreamfal:TLJ, were Cortez saves Westhouse and tells him that time is a circle.

No, not completely. I know my posts were too long but I think I clearly explained how I interpreted this: some entities we come across (or play as) might be capable of experiencing or even living time as a circle (and thus have varying degree of knowledge about the future-past or even sort-of time-travel in their minds like Venars do according to my understanding) but they can't psychically travel through time (at least not at will and/or on their own), especially not human-like entities like April or Saga.



#18 LootHunter

LootHunter

    Fringe Café Regular

  • Banned
  • PipPip
  • 100 posts
  • LocationRussia, Moscow

Posted 19 October 2016 - 05:20

Yes, you've completely missed that in TLJ young April meets old Saga.

 

No, not completely. I know my posts were too long but I think I clearly explained how I interpreted this: some entities we come across (or play as) might be capable of experiencing or even living time as a circle (and thus have varying degree of knowledge about the future-past or even sort-of time-travel in their minds like Venars do according to my understanding) but they can't psychically travel through time (at least not at will and/or on their own), especially not human-like entities like April or Saga.

Again, April does travel in time and meets Saga Alvane in The Longest Journey. That exact episode is shown in the end of Dreamfall Chapters.



#19 bongboy

bongboy

    Vestrum Herald

  • Banned
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1710 posts
  • LocationRenton, WA, USA

Posted 19 October 2016 - 05:34

Again, April does travel in time and meets Saga Alvane in The Longest Journey. That exact episode is shown in the end of Dreamfall Chapters.

No, April enters a house which is unbound from time, which means that her meeting with Saga does not happen in the past or the future or the present because it is unbound to time. If you missed that, you probably missed a lot more, so it would probably be a good idea for you to replay the game(s) and then read through all that's already been discussed on these forums.



#20 the red of the kin

the red of the kin

    Vestrum Herald

  • Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1067 posts
  • LocationTrieste (Italy)

Posted 19 October 2016 - 07:20

well...to be fair...

To say a "house is unbound to time" sound as sci-fi or magic as saying "April travelled in time". But the games do speak for themselves: April clearly doesn't travel through time, at least not willingly.

 

Saga is April reborn and she knows April will show up.

Saga does perceive the passing of time. In fact: 
1. she knows she will die (and we've watched her whole life in the course of 5 books)
2. she says that it's not really a circle but more like a spiral
I think the last one means time does go in circles but it's got a beginning and it's set to end.

That implies a preset path (which echoes through time) and a divine providence at work. The strongest clue is Saga knowing everything that's bound to happen because of song-lines. 

 

My point of view is...if the house truly was unbound to time, the it wouldn't have been built by Magnus and Etta and/or Saga would have no age...or maybe she wouldn't age while in the house. So: time does not affect the house but the house and its inhabitants did have a beginning and will have an end. Time is a spiral.

poetry: this is where this game shines!


IF YOU'RE A GHOST.......JUST LEAVE ME BE!





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users