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Sly Reflex

The Bethesda Problem

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8 minutes ago, one-armed dwarf said:

The thing you linked isn't a lie. Some people find gating progress behing sidequests a form of grinding. You can't call a thing which can be relativized to our individual preferences a lie.

 

There's examples in there of known lies in his Jimpressions vid. He says he's a certain level so can't carry on with the story but the level requirement for the story mission is actually under what he is at in that particular part of the video so he could do the mission easily...just making faux-controversy. 

 

It's all in the thread, I'm not gonna go through it all. Lies and misinformation, all the evidence is on Era.

 

I don't like talking about it because people probably think 'Blakey's gone mad again' 😂 because of the strength and reach of Sterling et al's voices; opinions, misinformation and lies get taken in as fact so when you call it out you look mad 🤷‍♀️ 

 

I'll stop now.

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For what it's worth I heard Alex Navarro  raise the same issues with Odyssey. He is a big fan of the series and isn't lacking in integrity.

 

As for Jim, sensationalist? Yes. Click-bait? Sure. Hyperbole? Probably

 

 

Lies? Nah.

 

Personally I miss when sidequests where optional. For me that's against what the definition of the term implies. Or at least what it used to imply before.

 

It kind of ruined Nier Automata for me in route C. Didn't do sidequests and had to drop to easy cause I was level-gated out of beating enemies.

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I've seen firsthand how boosters are used in games. If the levelling was present and correct to how it should be instead or super grindy then there would be no need  for them to exist. Just the mere presence of boosters, especially when they're available for purchase points towards some meddling in the game design when it comes to levelling progression.

 

Including paid for boosters is an abhorrent act that compromises the integrity of the game. If the game can be played without them without any issues whatsoever, then why are they there in the first place? They might seem innocuous to a lot of players, but in reality they are absolute poison. If you tamper with your game design so that people are willing to pay to play less, then you've gone and fucked up somewhere.

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For me, 76 is worse than 4,in 2 significant ways:

 

-No NPCs. This is just a completely ridiculous decision. One of Fallout’s biggest features,for me,and many others,is the crazy,interesting characters you meet. There’s none of that here. Ok,there’s terminals to read,letters too. But it makes the world feel lifeless and dull. Worse,it renders every quest with a feeling of “who cares”,as absolutely everyone is dead. 

Elder Scrolls Online has NPCs,so stripping them out here was just a baffling decision.

They tried to justify it with “everyone you meet is a real player”. However,that leads to problem #2...

 

It’s “always online” nature. For a lot of people,crashes,at least at launch,were a regular feature. Leading to a loss of progress that was utterly unavoidable. Also,with the map being the size that it is,you could quite easily never see those other people. Making the Wasteland an even more lifeless place than it already was.

 

Anyways,I don’t think you’re mad. Nothing wrong with having a different opinion.😊

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As long as I've been aware of Bethesda (circa Fallout 3) they have a clear deficiency when it comes to QA, F76 is simply the next (and perhaps most extreme) chapter in that. They either have a bizarrely limited QA team or just don't value the process. Advocates for them would try to counter this by saying their "games are too big" to debug everything. Except now from Witcher 3 to Breath of The Wild, Everyone is doing games of this size without glaring QA issues and all it does is highlight Bethesda's short changing of their own processes. Their problem was due to financial success and die hard fans, they thought they were untouchable and could release anything to commercial acclaim. That bubble does tend to burst after a while...

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I’ve split this off from Random News, for obvious reasons.

 

Also @wiivo 2.0 TES is The Elder Scrolls.

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Sorry, @Blakey but you're talking absolute shit.

 

You seem to imply that none of us can think for ourselves and just follow faux-controversies from YouTubers we don't watch like mindless sheep.  But the evidence of all this bullshit people are mad about exists and there is no getting around that.  You can explain it away but to a lot of people the reasons aren't good enough.  Fine if these particular things don't bother you but you're not an authority on how everyone else should react to them, especially when the criticisms are valid and often routed in factual evidence.  And you haven't brought any evidence that people lie about this stuff; you can't just call it all lies and tell us to check out some randos on ResetEra.

 

As for Jim Sterling there is a performance to his shtick, absolutely no doubt, but he is good at backing his claims up.  He is big on transparency.

 

And as for Bethesda themselves well like most have said, they only brought it on themselves.  They took a game that should have been cancelled due to it not coming together as a game that is going to hold the Fallout title and started something else.  But they went through it and even marketed with a "It's kinda broke but you know us, lol 😂" They totally sold out the goodwill they were already, arguably, treading water with.  And that's even without going into the minutia of their pre-order and microtransactions strategy.

 

I still have some trust in Bethesda as a publisher but their in-house games are increasingly a mess and are getting surpassed left, right and centre.

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@DifferentClass

 

Quote
I don't like talking about it because people probably think 'Blakey's gone mad again' 😂 because of the strength and reach of Sterling et al's voices; opinions, misinformation and lies get taken in as fact so when you call it out you look mad 🤷‍♀️ 

 

I'll stop now.

 

✌️

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BSG's thing is having open world with way more variables than stuff like Witcher or BOTW. There's way more knobs and things  to fiddle with in  Bethesda games. Being able to pick up a cheese wheel and put it on the highest tip of the Imperial tower. Having a room in your house dedicated entirely to storing watermelons. Storing all your best weapons inside glass containers and leaving them there. Having the game retain that state throughout your entire playthrough.

 

But what value is any of this really?

 

 

A thing I heard somewhere about BGS's software is it allows way more inside meddling of different values in a way that's not strictly considered safe design practice. Variables that should be declared private and immutable have ways of being overridden and each iteration of TES and Fallout has added more and more ways of overriding what used to be protected data. This could all be horseshit but it would explain the gradual decline in the software quality and the unexpected consequences we've seen with stuff like 76. Maybe their games are "too open" and are starting to become too fragile to really innovate upon.

 

There's a term for this: technical debt. When you've gotten such a buildup of technical problems that they paralyze you from building out new features. Often cause by sticking closely to old tech for too long or having a messy QA and release cycle.

 

RDR is interesting cause it manages to be a complex open world but it doesn't have all these same things to twiddle with. It's very tightly curated. I dont like that game at all but I wonder if that's more the direction BGS should go in. Not all the way but a little bit at least and put all the complexity into something actually valuable other than building a bridge of paint-brushes from the Imperial city all the way to Cheydinal.

 

Like I'm pretty sure you couldn't do any of that stuff in Morrowind. So I say again, make Morrowind 2 dammit

 

Edit I just read that the engine they use now is an updated version of tech they've been using since the late 90s 🤯

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6 minutes ago, one-armed dwarf said:

BSG's thing is having open world with way more variables than stuff like Witcher or BOTW. There's way more knobs and things  to fiddle with in  Bethesda games. Being able to pick up a cheese wheel and put it on the highest tip of the Imperial tower. Having a room in your house dedicated entirely to storing watermelons. Storing all your best weapons inside glass containers and leaving them there. Having the game retain that state throughout your entire playthrough.

 

But what value is any of this really?

That has always been the counter-point to that trail of thought. If you have so much tertiary stuff going on in the game that the arrival of a new single hostile EG my own experience of a Deathclaw suddenly appearing from behind a building in FO 3, causes the game to freeze and crash completely, are the extra details worth it? 

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No they're not, that's my argument too.

 

There's a huge opportunity cost to taking the time to making a whole new engine. Just ask Square Enix who lost entire projects to Crystal Engine and never releases Versus XIII.

 

Open world are difficult I imagine cause you're probably not guaranteed to have your design vision accomodated by off the shelf stuff like Unreal. Which would explain why BGS has been battering the Morrowind engine into weird shapes for such a long time.

 

But they own ID software. Those guys are making an open world game right now and it looks great. A little simplistic compared to TES, but maybe an ID-tech TES could work out somehow

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The flipside of Bethesda's open world attitude is naturally Rockstar. Although they can make Glitchy Messes too (Looking at you, Manhunt 2) they at least don't keep repeating the same mistakes expecting different results.

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Lots of engines are from the 90s.  Call of Duty's engine is still just a modified Quake engine. 

 

The problem with GameBryo is that is what it's iterated on was never truly "fixed", due to the aforementioned complexity and the amount of moving parts.  If they focused more on polishing up there is no reason why GameBryo could have been in a much more usable state today. 

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Yeah, they're heavily indebted now to their vision for earlier games and decisions made while developing them. Skyrim is built on Fallout 3 which has some Oblivion in it etc.

 

It's like one of them Russian dolls type things init. They can't really roll all that stuff back. It's a really tough situation but I think the reception to 76 will be the wake up call that will start a big change. Hopefully.

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When 76 came out everyone focussed on the engine, but that’s missing the point. People can forgive a lot with bugs but the main criticism I heard about 76 was more the content, or lack of.

So if the content had been there and the game itself was compelling, the engine would barely get a mention.

 

I’ve watched enough footage of people playing it and heard enough from people I trust to stay away from 76. I take a Metacritic approach to opinions - if a majority say something is good or bad, I’ll take that. The amount of people defending 76 is really tiny and it’s not my sort of game. Plus I don’t like BSG’s usual games, so I can live with not experiencing whatever they’ve made with 76.

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12 minutes ago, DifferentClass said:

Lots of engines are from the 90s.  Call of Duty's engine is still just a modified Quake engine. 

 

The problem with GameBryo is that is what it's iterated on was never truly "fixed", due to the aforementioned complexity and the amount of moving parts.  If they focused more on polishing up there is no reason why GameBryo could have been in a much more usable state today. 

That's the entire problem. It's a copy of a copy of a copy. Mold deterioration is inevitable.

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I think, although New Engines are expensive and a risk, this is a case that Bethesda have played it too safe for too long.

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