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Dungeon Siege III Being Developed by Obsidian

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the hack-and-slash dept.

Role Playing (Games) 84

Square Enix has announced that it will be publishing Dungeon Siege III, which is in development at Obsidian Entertainment, makers of Alpha Protocol, Neverwinter Nights 2, and the as yet unfinished Fallout: New Vegas. Obsidian will be receiving input from Gas Powered Games, the developer behind the first two installments in the Dungeon Siege series. No release date has been set, but the game is planned for the PC, PS3, and Xbox 360, and it will include a co-op mode.

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84 comments

Great... (1)

Traze (1167415) | more than 3 years ago | (#32492722)

Another game to be butchered by SE. Supcom 1 was a great game. Supcom 2 sucked hardcore.

Re:Great... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492748)

Don't worry, Obsidian will be the ones to develop it. So it won't be bad because of square enix, it will just be a buggy unfinished mess with unsatisfying combat and a camera that hates you.

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492766)

nope, couldn't be butchered more, Uwe Boll already released a movie ...

I played the game back then, hoping for a Diablo or NWN alternative, it was okay but nothing interesting.

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32495244)

The only way it could get worse is if Stardock publishes it.

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492942)

After totally killing Neverwinter Nights 2 I wont touch anything touched by Obsidian ever again.

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492988)

Supreme Commander 2 was rumored to be tailored towards a very wide audience. While this sounds like a pleasant goal, it also meant creating software that could run on low-end machines. The removal of the A*algorithm path searching system. It's an unfortunate common trend these days.

AKA "Dumbing Down"

Re:Great... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32494228)

The removal of the A*algorithm path searching system.

Huh? Almost anybody writing a game uses A* (aka Dijkstra's algorithm with a heuristic). If you want to do any pathfinding at all (ie, let AI move from point A to point B), you're very likely using some variant of A*.

Re:Great... (1)

Zaphod The 42nd (1205578) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494984)

like the publisher has everything to do with the development of the game.

If you want to blame somebody for Supcom2, blame Gas Powered Games.

Re:Great... (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 3 years ago | (#32514036)

Super Prize for Gas Powered Games/MS for having Dungeon Siege 1 have DRM that is not Vista compatible(Wait there is a patch if you use Vista SP0)
Yes, the patch wont install if you have SP1

Here is thanking the person that wrote the NoCD crack that gets it working(in Vista any SP)

Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492740)

I never played Dungeon Siege 1 or 2. I remember reading about Dungeon Siege before it came out in the gaming magazine I subscribed to back then. I wasn't very interested in the fantasy/RPG genre back then.

Are Dungeon Siege 1 and 2 something I should consider checking out? Any feedback for me slashdot? Good? Bad? Meh?

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

siDDis (961791) | more than 3 years ago | (#32492844)

I've played the first game, the game itself is okey. I think Diablo 2 and Titan Quest are both better action rpg's. The musical score in Dungeon Siege is fantastic, Jeremy Soule best soundtrack in a game yet in my opinion.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (3, Informative)

RogueyWon (735973) | more than 3 years ago | (#32492892)

They're ok-ish. Diablo clones, basically, whose only real distinction is that you get control of a full party, rather than the usual individual (with possible AI follower) that you get in the genre. However, I note that this is allegedly going out the window in the third game, so you'll be controlling a single character, as in umpteen other games.

I played the first game to completion, and about half of the second game before I got too bored to continue. The first game started out well, and the whole "no loading screens" thing felt pretty novel at the time; walking into a building or dungeon and having the game transition seemlessly felt pretty novel in the days before WoW (and even WoW has loading screens when changing continent or going into an instance). Early on, it felt pretty fun, with lots of changes in the environment and the terrain. Unfortunately, the game's mid-section is tedious in the extreme, with some very long, highly repetitive dungeons which just seem to go on forever. Things improve somewhat again towards the end, with a few large and extremely epic boss fights, but I'm not sure how many players would make it that far. The game also had a few balance problems; in particular, it was very hard to keep characters levelled up in nature magic (the healing-build) at the same rate as your other characters would be advancing in the offensive skills.

The second game I found it much harder to get into. Despite a generally better and less generic plot, it seemed to have a lot of the flaws of the first game, but amplified further. The early combat areas were monotonous, and maybe it's just me, but I found the difficultly level extremely steep (and while nothing special, I'm not generally bad at this genre). One thing common to both games is that you'll get more out of them if you have somebody to play them co-op with.

So the third game... I don't think I personally will be bothering. It's not a genre I'm head over heels in love with, and with the full-party-control apparently cut, I'd probably wait for Diablo 3 if I wanted to play a click-fest.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

CrashNBrn (1143981) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493742)

An extremely deep difficulty level?

Most of us that modded it cranked the difficulty level up to the extreme because it was too easy.

DS1 and 2 were awesome to Mod. Unfortunately the Dev's mostly abandoned DS2 while they went on to SupCom and the DS2 branch died an untimely death. Whereas people still continue to mod DS1 to this day.

There are many complete (overhaul) mods for DS1 -- some of the most famous being "Ultima V - Lazarus" or Ultima 6.

The expansions for both DS1 and DS2 were decent. I believe the game would of been much more of a hit (and made quite a bit more money) if the Dev's hadn't released DS2 with PvP broken beyond repair and if they hadn't worked so hard against the modding community.

Considering GPG is only going to "give input" -- it's possible that the idiotic ideas that were bandied about over the last few years by Chris Taylor wont come to fruition (i.e. turning it into a "space siege" clone).

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494628)

I don't like comparing them to "serious" RPGs. They're less complex, take less time to complete, and are fairly linear.

That's not to say that they're not enjoyable -- they keep my attention throughout the story, and have some of the best art/graphics I've seen in an RPG (with distinctive graphics and monsters in each dungeon, which is a very nice touch). If anything, their simplicity makes it easy to pick up or put down on a whim.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494872)

Heck, these games practically play themselves.

I'm disappointed. I expected more from Obsidian.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 3 years ago | (#32503402)

I played Dungeon Siege 1. It never compelled me to actually finish it.

Titan Quest, though... I had to finish that one.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

Ranma-sensei (800217) | more than 3 years ago | (#32509292)

Difficult, eh?

IMO, the only way to die in-game would be to set options to manual control (assuming you didn't already do that) and then go away for half an hour or so (while in the middle of a boss fight, mind you!).

Personally, I hated DS2, while I basically loved DS1 - at least in Co-op.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 3 years ago | (#32513632)

The early combat areas were monotonous

Then Obsidian should fit right in

Here is to remembering(and hopefully soon forgetting) that terrible space mining station in KotOR2 with only boring mining robots that couldn't hit the broad side of a bus

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492918)

DS1 was pretty good. Very nice graphics (when it came out about 10 years ago). Lacked load screens. It auto-loaded in the background as you traveled. It was pretty much 1 long road you walked down killing things.
Comparable to Diablo, but 3D vs (then, maybe now never played it) Diablo's 2D.

DS2 was not very good. They had removed even the thought of combat tactics. Now you just pointed and your people did their stuff in that general direction. You just watched your people swing and cast spells automatically, according to some AI script you couldn't touch. It felt like the game played itself but required you to keep clicking forward. Truly mindless and not worth touching. By then most other games caught up to it in terms of graphics.
DS2 was the only game where I got into the Beta and decided NOT to buy it because of my Beta experience. It was really bad.

.
.
.
Maybe I should reinstall DS1. I miss playing RPGs (which this wasn't really), but no longer have the time to get into them. When I have a half hour to play I can't remember what quests I was doing 2 weeks ago and where I was in the them. DS's "on rails" vs. "open world" style removes that depth and the need to remember my task (my task is to kill things in front of me, and enjoy the magic items and scenery). In DS1, you got to control the combat (when to cast spells and who to cast them on); DS2 didn't even let you control that.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

kv9 (697238) | more than 3 years ago | (#32496598)

DS2 was not very good. They had removed even the thought of combat tactics. Now you just pointed and your people did their stuff in that general direction. You just watched your people swing and cast spells automatically, according to some AI script you couldn't touch. It felt like the game played itself but required you to keep clicking forward. Truly mindless and not worth touching.

wrong, the auto combat was disabled by default just because many people whined about it in DS1 and you had to go check some boxes to enable it. I enjoyed DS1 more, DS2 felt kinda arcadeish, but it was a bit more difficult and "pretty". liked it better on the second playthrough.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

gravos (912628) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493226)

The first game was so-so when it came out -- worth playing, but not worth getting excited over -- but it was overrated. Now? Nah, just wait for Diablo 3 or try Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup or something like that.

Frankly I don't think it’s a franchise worth resurrecting. No memorable characters or IP. They are just trying to ride off the title's name recognition, that's it, really.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493858)

You'd be better off getting Sacred Gold [gog.com], which has random drops, huuuuge game world, tons of side quests (which you can choose to do/not do), rare set pieces to collect (which are also dropped randomly), cool skills to upgrade, just a better game. Also Divine Divinity [gog.com] is quite good and large, although it isn't quite as huge as Sacred IMHO.

The problem with the DS games is they are VERY linear, with the cool set armor always in the same place guarded by the same monsters, and by the time you really get something good to use the game is finished. It just doesn't have much in the way of reason to replay and while it looked good at the time the whole thing was just kinda...meh.

If you like those style of games you'd be better off with one of the above, and since GOG has NO DRM and everything "just works" on x86 and x64 it is just a better deal. Also their prices are cheap enough their games are pretty much impulse buys, so if you decide you don't care for one it isn't really gonna bother you. But if you want more than just a couple of days play either of the above will be a better game than DS 1 or 2, both in length and gameplay wise IMHO.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

wjousts (1529427) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494506)

I agree with Divine Divinity. I recently purchased it from GOG.com and it's well worth playing. I've been waiting for a good sale on Sacred Gold, but it's been on my to buy list for a long time.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

kv9 (697238) | more than 3 years ago | (#32496668)

Sacred Gold & Divine Divinity

wow those look pretty shitty I already played Diablo I. if you want proper good looking infinite dungeon crawling go get Torchlight [steampowered.com].

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493936)

DS1 is literally the only game I have not finished to completion. I stopped somewhere near to Chapter 7, after preferring actual work to the game. I hesitate to even call it a game, as it was that bad.

It contained no measurable plot or setting at all. "Oh, an evil force has invaded! Fight them!" After spending 2-4 monotonous hours following a pre-determined course -- which was instructed to you in a 2-sentence horrifically-voiced conversation -- the chapter comes to an end, with a one-line sentence to advance the story. But it kept things interesting, right? Wrong! It describes the very damned actions that you just made!

Player: *spends 2 hours fighting through an amazingly boring, seemingly never-ending Goblin maze* (kill count: 1,200 identical Goblins)
Narrator: "And our hero defeats the Goblins, and journeys on. [NEXT CHAPTER]." Hey, thanks, that was inspiring!

And then the same process starts all over again. The lack of a story would be forgivable if it had exciting gameplay. Except, it doesn't. You move your party, they auto-attack, and if you want, you can join in by selecting which of the dozens of enemies to attack. That's it. There are no thrilling tactics. You literally watch the game unfold.

What choices do you have? You primarily find yourself positioning the party, and activating heal-over-time nature spells. You can manually attack with 1 pre-selected offensive nature/combat spell, but all the selections suck. Offensive spells take 3-10 repeated casts to kill 1 out of the 100 enemies. There are no spectacular AoEs. Buffing? You can try it, but these add bonuses so marginal they are laughable, like +1 STR, when you have 40. Ranged? Better left to AI, as it leaves the party vulnerable. So you tank with a melee character. And you click, and you click, over and over.

Loot? Not even fun for OCD gamers. All loot is procedurally generated. "Yay, a Hammer of Slaughter +32!" "Oh wait, I already have +30, and it only does 2 less damage. *yawn*"

Environment? The engine itself is the only good thing about this game. Landscapes are beautiful... for the first hour. Then everything begins to look the same, as you are herded along the same path, with nowhere else to go but the way forward. Any chance you get to admire the surroundings is ruined by identical computer-spawned ambushes every 10-20 seconds. It discourages you from exploring, else you waste more time fighting the same 4-6 mobs for the 300th time.

Dungeon Siege was just... awful. I wouldn't play it again, even for $500. I felt the same way about District 9, the only movie I despised in over 20 years.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

wjousts (1529427) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494516)

Never played DS 2, but I got seriously bored with DS 1 after not very long. It's very linear, very repetitive and very dull. I wouldn't recommend it.

Re:Never played DS 1 or 2. Any opinions on them? (1)

Grygus (1143095) | more than 3 years ago | (#32498294)

The first one was interesting because it was breaking new ground in several ways: the engine had no load times and you could smoothly transition from overland to dungeon and back, the mechanics of having a party instead of one hero were new to the genre, the AI was surprisingly good for the time (some say it was too good, leading to complaints of watching the game instead of playing it), and the quality of the music was far better than most video games at the time could boast. I'm not sure any of those are enough to recommend a game these days, although the complete lack of load times (necessarily meaning a completely contiguous world) is still uncommon; they're great games as-is, but how much better would Dragon Age and Mass Effect 2 have been without the load times?

Here [youtube.com] is a clip of the music; the main theme to the first game.

Uh-oh... (1)

Kemanorel (127835) | more than 3 years ago | (#32492762)

Is this giving Uwe Boll more fodder for another movie?

Uwe Boll is the greatest thing ever (1)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493614)

Lets face it, he is a blessing in disguise. After him, nobody will ever dare make a movie about a game again. I mean it is not like anybody is still funding him after producing turd after turd right? Right? RIGHT?!?

Re:Uwe Boll is the greatest thing ever (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 3 years ago | (#32501010)

germany is funding him, via some kind of cultural expression funding or whatever.

Dungeon Seige: New Vegas? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492780)

I had some sort of sick obsession with Dungeon Seige and the expansion, never really did the whole "Dungeon Seige 2" thing. If Obsidian brings a little Fallout NPC/Open-world magic to this, it could be a pretty good game.

I have the first review (5, Insightful)

Lord_of_the_nerf (895604) | more than 3 years ago | (#32492816)

Innovative/rich storytelling. Lacks polish. Story-killing bugs will be corrected in a future patch. Expansion coming in 5-8 months.

Not that I'm cynical.

Re:I have the first review (1)

halestock (1750226) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493062)

Come on, name ONE game they made which had story killing bugs!

1) (Intelligence)You're right, I can't!

Re:I have the first review (1)

domasx2 (1828656) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493944)

Come on, name ONE game they made which had story killing bugs! 1) (Intelligence)You're right, I can't!

In Vampire: Bloodlines on a certain main story mission the next level would fail to load when it was supposed to. Thankfully, the workaround was to open the console and enter a command to load it manually at the right time. Still, having to google a workaround to progress is bad. I know, Bloodlines technically was developed by Troika. Still, mostly the same crew.

Re:I have the first review (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32494032)

Bloodlines was shipped literally unfinished. I mean that, unfinished. Troika failed the deadline to release, and Activision told them to ship it early.

Anyway, Bloodlines was doomed from the beginning. Asshole publishers, pre-release Source engine, apparently incompetent developers, non-industry-standard Python use (one of the earliest examples). I don't see why it should be considered as anything but an anomaly.

By the way, players are still actively patching the game. Pretty much all the old problems have been fixed.

Re:I have the first review (1)

2megs (8751) | more than 3 years ago | (#32495516)

I know, Bloodlines technically was developed by Troika. Still, mostly the same crew.

Not really. A few people from Troika went to Obsidian initially, but not many stayed long. At this point the biggest concentration is probably at Carbine Studios [carbinestudios.com] under Tim Cain, followed by Turtle Rock [turtlerockstudios.com] where experience with the Source Engine paid off in the making of Left 4 Dead. If you take a look at a recent L4D blog post [l4d.com] you can definitely see how much the early screen shots looked like Vampire -- not surprising considering some of the same lighting/level/texture people did them. (I was lead programmer on Vampire. You can ultimately blame most of the bugs on one very bad decision, by me, very early in the project. I chose an architecture for the scripting system that gave us more flexibility than we needed at the price of easy testing and validation. That's another story, though.)

Re:I have the first review (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32496154)

Does anyone own the Arcanum IP?

I'd love to see a good sequel to that someday.

Re:I have the first review (1)

2megs (8751) | more than 3 years ago | (#32496606)

I believe the rights to the IP belonged to Sierra, which like Blizzard was a division of Vivendi Universal, and thus is now a part of the Activision-Blizzard empire. I could be wrong, my guess is Arcanum 2 isn't a priority for Bobby Kotick. :-)

Re:I have the first review (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32496684)

Couldn't a smaller studio approach Activision about developing Arcanum 2 for Activision?

They could point to Fallout 3's success and show that even if the original property didn't sell like mad, you can still resurrect an older franchise and far surpass the original's sales.

Steampunk is all the rage right now.

Re:I have the first review (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32497132)

Couldn't a smaller studio approach Activision about developing Arcanum 2 for Activision?

Publishers have a lot of bullshit baggage tied to their rights, some of it deserved (what if you fuck up and ruin the brand name?)

Most of it is just bullshit. Activision would probably tell your small company that if it can't guarantee a hojillion dollars in sales, then it's not worth their time to screw with you, even if you could make them millions of dollars. Because of course making a million dollars is worth less than making nothing and holding out for someone who will promise them a hojillion dollars.

Re:I have the first review (1)

PincushionMan (1312913) | more than 3 years ago | (#32500292)

At least Activision saw fit to release Arcanum here [gog.com]. It's possible they re-released it to see if there's enough interest to develop a sequel. Wouldn't be the first time an old game has been released to get people interested in the sequel. See Star Wolves and King's Bounty for examples.

Re:I have the first review (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 3 years ago | (#32513694)

KotOR2

Patch of steam near the beginning that freezes your character
Being saved by a destroyed(killed) party member(after they have been killed)
Making impulsive-Revan a good guy?

Should i carry on?

Re:I have the first review (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493906)

Also: In 2 years a fan patch will come out, fixing almost every known bug and restoring majority of cut content.

Re:I have the first review (1)

space_jake (687452) | more than 3 years ago | (#32495302)

Sadly this is true. I was really impressed with NWN2 as a game I bought it just recently and there was still a bug that prevented me from finishing the game without a console command workaround. I was interested in Alpha Protocol till I heard about about it having the typical Obsidian "polish".

Re:I have the first review (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 3 years ago | (#32496138)

Let me guess, you couldn't get back to Maztica / Athkatla after a certain point in the quest?

I eventually finished the game, but that was the bug that stuck in my head, especially with the Devs on the forums poo-pooing multiple people having the same issue.

Re:I have the first review (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#32499276)

The biggest bug with that game was that even a top end SLI setup couldn't keep above 15 fps even after the big "performance" patch. Todays cards can probably play the game smoothly but I doubt any card can get phenomenal framerates.

Will it suck like the 2nd one? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492862)

The 1st Dungeon Siege was great. Very pretty for its time.
The 2nd was unplayable. Meaning that you basically watched it play itself. Combat was thoughtless. The game was always one long path (even in the 1st version), but it got worse in the 2nd.

Ouch (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32492944)

Is this Obsidian Entertainment's curse?

"We need a developer for the sequel of our game."
"I know of a studio that's great at sequels! They made such sequels as KoTOR 2, Neverwinter nights: , and many more!"
"Well, what are we waiting for! Let's not give them a chance to come up with a game of their own!"

I know I'm disregarding the first two Fallout games and planescape (which surely was given admission by Bioware), but otherwise, come on! The Alien RPG got cancelled, Torn got cancelled, and I'm sure they had alot of working titles that never made it past the drawing desk.

Give them another chance to create something grand again! They have it in them, just comission them something first hand!

Re:Ouch (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32496740)

I imagine that Obsidian's leadership has determined that making barely playable sequels (and 1 Alpha Protocol) quickly and cheaply to sell to suckers and the rpg faithful is more likely to earn the $$$ than the single AAA they might have been able to make in the timeframe of their last 3 releases.

Re:Ouch (1)

PincushionMan (1312913) | more than 3 years ago | (#32500456)

Obsidian is not Black Isle. Black Isle developed Planescape, Icewind Dale, etc... According to wikipedia [wikipedia.org], Obsidian was formed after Interplay dissolved Black Isle. The rest went to form Troika.

Remember their motto... (5, Funny)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493008)

Obsidian: we'll take your hit game and make a sequel that's half as good!

Re:Remember their motto... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493204)

Obsidian's games tend to be flawed, but that's still a bit unfair.

Speaking only of the official campaign, BioWare's NWN is not even comparable to what Obsidian did with NWN2 (the only real appeal of the first game was the multiplayer.) It's also worth mentioning that MoTB is among the best RPGs of this "generation", easily hanging with the likes of Dragon Age.

KOTOR2 I'll give you, though Lucas Arts rushing the game out the door when it was yet unfinished also factored into that. Had Lucas Arts given them time to finish it, it probably would've went down as being better than the original.

Haven't played Alpha Protocol, but it does sound like it's their most flawed game yet.

Re:Remember their motto... (1)

Heed00 (1473203) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493564)

Obsidian's games tend to be flawed, but that's still a bit unfair.

Speaking only of the official campaign, BioWare's NWN is not even comparable to what Obsidian did with NWN2 (the only real appeal of the first game was the multiplayer.) .

The problem with your analysis here is that NWN's was something very much more than the official campaign -- from the get go it was designed to be a tool for people to make their own adventures and play together. The OC was only supposed to be little more than a demo of what might be done. When Bioware lost the Baldur's Gate franchise through the legal battles with Interplay (parent of Black Isle who's remnants are now Obsidian) they had to scramble to try to turn it into something also that served the player looking for more "Baldur's Gate type of play". In short, Bioware lost their showcase RPG story telling product and then needed to shoe horn that feature into the NWN's package. So, simply comparing official campaigns isn't exactly fair in terms of a complete analysis of the two products -- one was an afterthought born of necessity and the other (NWN2's) was designed from the get go to be the main product on offer. Also, I take issue with the only real appeal of NWN1 being multiplayer -- the toolset (building) and custom content were huge aspects of the game with many 10's of thousands of downloads of user created modules designed for single player use only.

Obsidian took a deliberate design decision to focus on the campaign and as a result they made some dubious technical decisions with regard to the entire package. Multiplayer, the toolset and custom content all took a back seat to the OC, so it's not surprising that it surpassed Bioware's OC which was, effectively, an afterthought. The longevity and heart of the original game, however, was down to the entire package (and ongoing support from Bioware) -- and this is where NWN2 fell down. NWN1 corrected it's deficiencies with its OC's in the subsequent expansions, but Obsidian couldn't effectively fix what it had broken in a timely and coherent manner which led to the game fading out and not enduring as the original has done.

It's certainly not entirely Obsidian's fault -- I'm sure dealing with near broke Atari as publisher didn't make things easy on them in the least. I'm sure they were pressured to release before ready, etc. etc. They gave it a valiant effort given what looked to be an extremely limited (possibly nonexistent?) after ship support budget. They also tried to keep the community engaged, appointed a community manager, had a technical blog by one of the programmers for the building community http://oeiprogrammer.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com] and generally tried to make all the right noises. In the end, having a good OC was just not enough to have the same kind of enduring legacy that NWN1's enjoys, however -- the whole package is needed for that and they didn't deliver it.

Re:Remember their motto... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32503104)

Indeed; NWN1 was thousands of times better than NWN2. The excitement I had for NWN2 was tremendous... then I found out it was being ruined by Obsidian. Broken promises and epic amounts of fail slowly because the name of the game with Obsidian at the helm, with the final result being a pitiful shadow of a once glorious and booming game.

Re:Remember their motto... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493708)

Not that the 1st NWN story was masterpiece... it's just NWN2 is not really any better. I dropped it by the time I reach trial. Why would I even care about some sort of trials while playing a druid? Oh, and alignment become even more crazy. One word and you gain some lawful (or other) points. They are somehow implying that I'd say something other than what local government want me to say? Meh.

Re:Remember their motto... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32504902)

BioWare's NWN is not even comparable to what Obsidian did with NWN2 (the only real appeal of the first game was the multiplayer.)

NWN2 had no redeeming qualities. It featured such gems as party members you had no choice over whether you attained, and who then foiled every persuasion/bluff attempt you tried in favor of railroading you along the main plot. A slap in the face after the freedom and depth of roleplaying in the original game. Take those away and you get a game with mechanics designed for the tabletop and shoehorned into a video game that plays just like every other lame RPG on the market.

On the other hand, I very much enjoyed the singleplayer experience in the two expansions to NWN. The plot of the original game was a bit lacking, but undrentide and underdark were brilliant.

DS II was as good as its predecessor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493276)

DS II and its expansions were as good as DS I

They managed to keep the quality through the first sequel, let's hope they can continue the same way.

In my opinion DS series were the ideal overnight-LAN games, they were short enough (you could play through the main storyline in ~10h), they had the 'casual' aspect in them (they were a lot more fun to play than Diablo or NWN) while keeping the cusomization rather high (carefully chosen characters with specific builds/gear could do wonders together).

Iv'e found myself missing similar games quite a few times in recent years.

Re:Remember their motto... (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494936)

NWN2 is light years better than NWN1.

Fallout: NV looks much better than Fallout 3.

KOTOR:2 has a better story than KOTOR:1 and some nice new game mechanics (including the Influence system) but I admit it was a buggy mess that Lucas shipped way too early. That really isn't their fault.

The bar for surpassing Dungeon Siege 1 and 2 is VERY LOW.

But these are also the guys who took the Infinity Engine from Bioware way back in the day and then delivered Planescape Torment, perhaps the best PC title of all time. They also used the engine to make Icewind Dale 1 and 2, which was the best combat-heavy/dungeon crawl games to be produced with that engine.

I just don't understand why they would both with a really crappy Dungeon Siege franchise in the first place.

Re:Remember their motto... (1)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 3 years ago | (#32503066)

Well, I was in large part just joking. But (IMHO of course)...

NWN2 was just more of the same to me. After playing NWN (which I don't think was that great) NWN2 couldn't hold my interest for long. Never tried MotB, heard it was interesting but really buggy. Besides, they kind of screwed themselves bothering to make good expansions to a largely uninteresting base game.

I really liked KOTOR2, actually, despite the bugs - until it just ENDED. Sigh. I feel for them, but it's still their game and their reputation...

Can't comment on Fallout: NV yet, as their reputation lately is high concept and flawed execution :)

And as you said, DS3 seems doomed from the start, since the last two DS games were pretty lame to begin with. (I had some fun playing them multiplayer, but the single player experience is SO BORING!)

Planescape Torment was hands down a fantastic game. Icewind Dales were very good, too. So were the original Fallouts. But those were all Black Isle, not Obsidian.

And before you say "yeah, but a lot of those developers moved to Obsidian" - well, big deal, that didn't work out so well for Flagship Studios and Hellgate: London, either...

Re:Remember their motto... (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 3 years ago | (#32513874)

KotOR2 ended - by forcing the player to run into a brick wall.
Prize for closest Light Side/Dark Side endings for a Star Wars game goes to ... KotOR2

Re:Remember their motto... (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 3 years ago | (#32513848)

KotOR2 better than KotOR1 for story telling?

What version of KotOR2 did you play? The still in progress Comunity Expansion Pack?
KotOR1 took the best bits of the Star Wars Trilogy, and reorganised them to make something just as epic and fun
KotOR2 was more like "How ccan we make the plotline deep and meaningful, without adding anything?
The box art villain had to be killed before he was named
And the whole cutting Jedi off from the force?
KotOR2 suffered from a bad case of post-credits-WTF-happened-Read-Wiki syndrome

Even the box art is wrong(prize to the person who can spot 2 impossible screenshots there...)

Re:Remember their motto... (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494946)

If Obisidian wants to make a sequel no one was asking for from an RPG franchise, why not contact their buddies over at Bioware and make a Jade Empire sequel?

Jade Empire was a great setting and concept, but the actual finished product was too simple and very short. I think there is potential for a much improved sequel.

Meanwhile... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493088)

...the innocent sea unicorns in the Mexican Gulf continue to be cruelly poisoned by Tony "English Douchebag" Hayward's oily death juggernaut.

360 and PS3... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32493092)

Awesome, another console port designed to be used with a controller.

Re:360 and PS3... (1)

rainmouse (1784278) | more than 3 years ago | (#32493874)

Agreed, nothing worse than a PC game where the tutorial tells you to press the blue X button on your controller to continue and you have to hammer around the keyboard trying to find it. Half assed console ports have done far more damage to PC gaming than piracy ever could.

Re:360 and PS3... (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#32495280)

And then the same company goes the half-assed way of porting their game to Mac OS X by using Cider and wonders why nobody wants to play their games.

Over hyped much? (3, Insightful)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494234)

Hooray! Two of the most over hyped developers in the industry team up with the most over rated publisher to make a sequel to one of the most over rated franchises!

Re:Over hyped much? (1)

CoryD (1813510) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494682)

Over Rated?! DID YOU PLAY Space Siege? Oh, wait. I see your point now.

Re:Over hyped much? (1)

kalirion (728907) | more than 3 years ago | (#32495880)

Over Rated?! DID YOU PLAY Space Siege? Oh, wait. I see your point now.

A MetaCritic score of 60 is "overrated" for this game? Wow, it must really suck...

Re:Over hyped much? (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 3 years ago | (#32501046)

i kinda enjoyed the first game, but mostly because it had a multiplayer map that was seamless (you could take shortcuts between places if you knew where to look and could dodge or kill the nearby enemies), and didnt have long forced story sequences. Sadly they dropped that in the second game, instead just making the main story optionally co-op.

KOTOR II (1)

JonJ (907502) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494756)

After the complete fuckup that was Knights of the Old Republic II I am never buying anything that Obsidian creates again.

Re:KOTOR II (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494892)

Obsidian was given 12 months for that game, which is a very short timetable. Many AAA titles have 3-4 years of development. Except Lucas shipped the game after 9 months, not 12.

Even worse, Lucas freaked out at the last minute about how dark the game was, and lopped off most of the ending.

You can download content restoration mods that restore much of the cut content that was left on the disc. In the end, it really is a better game than the first, despite almost no development time.

Re:KOTOR II (1)

Itchyeyes (908311) | more than 3 years ago | (#32495388)

You know, people make this excuse for KOTOR 2 all the time. The only problem is, both NWN2 and Alpha Protocol were unfinished technical nightmares too, and neither of those games had anything to do with Lucas Arts. I'm sure LA had a role in KOTOR 2's problems, but it's also clear that Obsidian is a developer that has major problems finishing their games. Just because one of their three f*** ups may not have been entirely their fault, doesn't mean they continue to get the benefit of the doubt every time they announce a new game.

Re:KOTOR II (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32495504)

I've read some reviews that Alpha Protocol is buggy at launch, but I never read those reviews for NWN2.

Meanwhile Dragon Age was buggy as hell and unplayable for tons of players. Read those forums some time. There is a massive memory leak that last time I checked, is still unresolved, that leads to 10 minute load times when you change maps.

Fallout 3 is still practically unplayable even after the Game of the Year release and final patch. The vanilla game crashes every 30 seconds to 5 minutes for me. I have to use third party mods and hacks to make the game playable.

If Dragon Age and Fallout 3 are the two biggest RPG releases to be compared to, then Obsidian suddenly doesn't look that bad.

And I don't think anyone has suggested that NWN2 and Alpha Protocol are unfinished games.

As far as KOTOR:2 goes, Obsidian was a brand new studio forming, and put out a pretty amazing game given the 9 months they worked on it. Name another studio that could put out a game like that in a supposed 12 month table, and have it shipped after 9 months.

Bethesda takes 4 years plus for their RPGs, and still ship them as massively buggy messes.

Re:KOTOR II (1)

darthvader100 (1482651) | more than 3 years ago | (#32513978)

Strange, I played the unpatched versino of Dragon Age with maybe 2 crashes in the entire 80+ hour game.

And neither of them was game breaking
As for the "KotOR 2 was rushed, pity the Devs", more importantly, pity the people that bought it. The storyline was a mess filled with philosophical Mumbo-Jumbo. Was worse than trying to read Dune:Messiah(Okay, maybe it was a tie)

Re:KOTOR II (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32497224)

Have you actually played Alpha Protocol or are you just regurgitating the same bullshit from the American reviewers who played the game for 10-15 minutes, couldn't quite understand that it's an RPG not a shooter, saw graphics slightly below the standard for a AAA title this week, and proclaimed it an unfinished steaming pile with technical issues?

Playing the 360 version I have experienced very few issues that I would classify as technical in nature. I have encounter ~3 frame rate hiccups as new parts of large levels were loading and significant texture pop-in akin to ME1.

A large portion of the animations are pretty chunky (while others like the CQC/stealth takedowns are pretty damn sweet) and the shooting mechanics are decidedly hard RPG (it can take 3+ headshots to take down mid-level goons if you haven't completely scoped in for a critical) and suck if you are trying to play run and gun. These seem like design choices rather than technical issues to me.

It sounds like the PC version does require a good deal of .ini tweaking to address mouse sensitivity and lag issues (while looking significantly better assuming you've got decent hardware), but doesn't sound as troublesome as FO3 was for the majority of users.

While it could have been longer, it definitely doesn't feel unfinished to me. Overall, this is one of the best implementations of C&C I have seen in an RPG.

Hopefully more competent (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#32494762)

Hopefully they will do a more competent job than on Dungeon Siege 2 [microsoft.com].

Re:Hopefully more competent (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 3 years ago | (#32503284)

Frankly, given how utterly boring Dungeon Siege 1 was, I'm amazed it got a single sequel, much less two. Seriously... people enjoyed that game? I only even finished it because I felt like giving up on the snorefest would be a waste of money.

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