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Elden Ring (George RR Martin and From Software)

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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    I just guess I've different priorities. I let vaati do the hard work and just enjoy the atmosphere and mystery. I'm a big supporter of show dont tell and find that many game designers insistence to include the whole game design bible and lore in the game is to the detriment to the actual game. Gameplay is king and much prefer non intrusive or environmental storytelling.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    I thought dark souls did it brilliantly. The obtuseness of the story was part of the storytelling as you are actively being lied to by nearly everyone and what your ultimate goal is isn't in your interest and isnt really making everything good.

    It reminds me of Valkyrie profile where you can carry out Odin's plan or go off the beaten track and learn the truth and follow your own path.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    I think if they had given the Doll maybe 10 lines of optional dialogue, to give you the basics about the old ones, healing church and school of mensus, that would have been enough. I'm not looking for a tonne of exposition, just a stronger hint of what is going on and what is at stake. I don't think that would hurt the atmosphere or intrude in any way.

    I am using BB as an example because the backstory was amazing and I would have liked to be aware of it while playing the first time.



  • Registered Users Posts: 23,129 ✭✭✭✭J. Marston


    Beaten Bloodborne 4 or 5 times, platinumed it and still don't know what was going on.

    The church was messing with monster blood and aliens were a bit offended by that, or something.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    ...



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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    It is Aliens v The Catholic Church v A slightly less evil version of Trinity College

    Basically all the good bits of HP Lovecraft with none of the overt racism.



  • Registered Users Posts: 13,866 ✭✭✭✭Potential-Monke


    So the Dark Souls games are the best ever but the story is optional... I'll never understand DS fans.... At least ye are more or less finally admitting that these games were never about the story.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 29,219 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate


    They can still be among the best games ever if you basically ignore the story, they’re hardly mutually exclusive properties :)

    A lot of the storytelling in these games is told through setting, character design, even item descriptions. I don’t really care about the lore and don’t tend to dig in, but I always appreciate the designers have put care into how everything fits together. The deeper storytelling is there for anyone who wants to pay extra attention.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    Story is the least important thing about a videogame. It can add to it. But would Tetris be one of the best games ever if it had a story?



  • Registered Users Posts: 13,866 ✭✭✭✭Potential-Monke


    Wow, ok. Heard it here first folks, stories are the least important part of a game. And to prove it, we'll use a game developed in 1984 with very basic tech. Yes, stories are not important in modern gaming at all...

    Does explain a lot about DS fans though.

    Edit: Just to add to this, and to appease my enquiry, do you care that Elden Ring has a story penned by Martin? Or you just don't care as long as you get more Dark Souls type gameplay?

    Post edited by Potential-Monke on


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  • Registered Users Posts: 33,362 ✭✭✭✭Penn


    I disagree. I'll power through a game with mediocre or boring/repetitive gameplay if the story has grabbed me. The story can add a huge amount to enhancing the setting and making you engage with characters, which can affect how you feel about what happens to them in the story.

    It's part of what makes games a unique form of storytelling; you become active it in rather than passively just watching it like film/TV. Though, that depends on how much the player is willing to allow themselves to be engaged/engrossed in it too. There's no right or wrong, just it'll appeal to some and not others.

    Yes, games are ultimately games. Gameplay is vital and there are several elements which will be more important than others depending on what type of game it is. But story shouldn't just be relegated to being the least important element. Game stories will always be, at best, okay. They'll never be better than tv/film because games always have to serve gameplay first and foremost. But I think a lot of people find great value in stories in games and it can be a vital element for them, and I include myself in that.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    Ok then. Ikaruga. Or r-type final 2. Or even something like Bayonetta where it's a much better game when you skip the stupid story.

    Again stories can help a game. But they aren't vital. As John carmack said about doom, game stories are like the story in a porno.

    Not saying they can't help or enhance a game and make them better. But a bad story or a badly paced story can make a game worse as well.

    But of youve got a game that has great mechanics and is fun you either don't need a story or just the barest hint of one. Streets of rage 4 for a recent example.

    And to say people don't play from games for the story is just being antagonistically ignorant. I mostly play from games because I love the mechanics and set pieces they create from the those mechanics. And even though I dont actively engage in the story I feel the game is greatly enhanced by the lore and atmosphere that shapes the game and engages me subconsciously.

    I think the issue here is yourself though. Just coming out with something antagonistic like that and aiming it at people (dark souls fans) out of absolutely nothing looks like you are just out to start trouble rather than engage in meaningful discussion.



  • Registered Users Posts: 13,866 ✭✭✭✭Potential-Monke


    Ah Ted, you're the one who outright penned story as the least important aspect of a game, yet I'm the one "out to start trouble"? Come off it. You aired your personal opinion as fact. You then used a game of its time (1984) to prove this point, completely ignoring the fact that a well made game and story was something that was impossible in 1984. You then go on, in your follow up reply, to point out games where everyone knows the story is not the focal point, and use them as further evidence that game stories are the least important.

    I made those throwaway comments about DS fans and what they want from games as I thought your comment was also a throwaway one. But yet yours isn't to be taken seriously, and mine was? I know we disagree on a lot of things, but I feel like you're deliberately trying to make me look the fool here, and using your vast knowledge of retro gaming and the industry to try and paint me in that light. You say that the story is the least important part, but still defend DS as having one, you just need to find it, when others have come on to say that the story in DS games is barely there and annoying to find.

    All the games you've mentioned, I have no interest in because, well, they don't have a good story. I may even be tempted to try and push through the absolute bollocks mechanics (imo) of the DS series if the lore/story was good, but it's apparently not because it's the last thing fans of those games talk about, and prefer talking about the "amazing" combat as the main core of the pull of these games.

    I'm gonna leave this here, because it's taking away from this thread. I'm not getting into it (again). But I am thankful that you've let your own opinion on stories in games known, because it allows me to avoid discussing it further with you. We are too different in this regard, and it's already leading to snipes and passive aggressiveness. We'll also just ignore all the amazing games with amazing stories over the last 20 years, ME, GoW, TLoU, etc. (Edit; imo)

    ==================

    I look forward to hearing more about Elden Ring and it's story/lore, as it may help me play the game to completion.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    Well if you weren't being snipey about Dark Souls fans then I took you up the wrong way.

    To explain what I mean, and this is coming from someone that has studied this so I'd be looking at it more academically, I still think story is one of the least important aspects of a videogame. And to get into pedanticism, I said it was the least important, not that it wasn't important. It's about as important to a game as graphics. Story like graphics can really add a lot to a game but equally aren't necessarily required. As for the games you mentioned, I agree that all are story heavy but also more importantly they have solid gameplay mechanics to back that up. I feel the games are enhanced by their narratives. I'm not trying to say that games with a focus on story are inherently bad.

    Anyway if you still aren't convinced then here is my last attempt to convince you about what I'm saying. Look at all the incredible games with rubbish or throw away stories that are considered some of the best games ever made. Radiant Silvergun, Streets of Rage 4, Devil May Cry, the Mario games, Tetris, Resident Evil games, etc. Then the same with narratively strong games with great gameplay and mechanics, Journey, TLOU, Suikoden 2. Also regarded as some of the best games ever.

    Games with dodgy gameplay but good stories though? They're just remembered as games with good stories but bad gameplay. Stuff like Nier, Deadly Premonition, Spec Ops the Line, etc.

    Note; I **** love those games but I'll also admit they have issues. In fact in your daily hypocrisy, I'm playing Trails in the Sky Second Chapter, a go with great narrative but the sheer amount of it is constantly threatening my enjoyment of the game but I still like it.

    Of course there's edge case exceptions to the rule like Silent Hill 2 but that's more a testament to how diverse games are.

    Anyway if you don't understand what I'm trying to say then I can't explain it better than that.



  • Registered Users Posts: 13,866 ✭✭✭✭Potential-Monke


    Points taken and understood. We think too differently. Older games were considered good, without a good story, because technical limitations put focus on making the repetition fun (Tetris, Streets of Rage, Mario, Sonic, etc). But we're far beyond then, where stories can be just as important as other aspects of the game. The ones you mentioned with good stories but bad gameplay, I didn't finish them because of it. So I'm not saying story is the most important. I look for a bit of everything yet I expect nothing, so that I can be surprised by games these days. There are very few games I consistently play, mainly because I enjoy the stories just as much as the gameplay, and sometimes I get a game that ticks all those boxes for me personally (GoW, R&C, LoK, earlier TR games). You mention Journey as having a great story and gameplay, and I think it completely failed on both counts.

    So it's all down to personal opinion. Granted, you may have studied this, I definitely didn't, so mine is all based on my own personal opinion and what makes me tick. I just think downplaying the story to least important is wrong, as it's extremely important for some people, and they would take a strong story (to them) over gameplay mechanics. I don't play modern repetitive games outside of Rocket League, and that's just the current flavour. It could have been replaced with CoD or BF if either of them were any good. It's why I can't replay most games, because I know the story and the gameplay is too repetitive otherwise. I've played through the Legacy of Kain series at least 5 times, because it does everything right for me. It's all personal, and we defintely disagree on what we consider more important in gaming.

    And yes, it was 100% a snipe at DS fans. It will always be a snipe at them, because of their attitude to non-fans. That'll never change, soz!



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    It is the least important thing about some videogames, such as arcade/action games. Do you honestly think the story is the least important thing about a game like Knights of the Old Republic?



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    You are thinking about this wrong. You have to ask yourself would KotOR be a better game if the story wasn't as good. I think the answer would be yes. Whereas if it had the same story but was linear and had the Legend of Dragoon combat system it would be unplayably bad despite the writing.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    I could say you are thinking about this wrongly as well, you have suggested that changing its genre and keeping the story - the story is extremely important to Kotor's particular genre. And no, Kotor would not be better if the story wasn't as good. The story is the cornerstone that holds that game up.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 29,219 CMod ✭✭✭✭johnny_ultimate


    This isn't a binary thing at all.

    There are many masterpiece games that have not a jot of story or a shite, ignorable one.

    There are games that are significantly better than they otherwise would be because attention has been paid to the writing and storytelling.

    Storytelling in games (or indeed any medium) is a more fluid and complex concept than just a plot being recounted to the player. You can have a game that's all but plot-free but is rich in texture, environmental storytelling and atmosphere.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    Yea pretty much, horses for courses really. To bring it back to my original point, I don't have any problems with how much story a developer includes in its game or how they tell it, I just wish From Software took a slightly less obscure approach.



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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    And as I was saying as long as it doesn't get in the way of the enjoyment of the game then I'm ok with it. Show don't tell is always the best approach and I think From excels at that while also keeping hooks in there for the people that like to get invested in lore.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,356 ✭✭✭seraphimvc


    Watched Vaati on the lore video last night - and ye dang, i can't wait!

    The story/lore is not new / something unheard of, but Fromsoft always makes their games unique in their own ways. Well, honestly, the soul formula was getting tiring by DS3, thank god they are willing to shake it up with sekiro, and now Elden ring looks promising (definitely look like some BofW influence, again not even BofW did something new but ya). And ohya the story reminds me of a recent LN/manga called World's end paladin (again again, this LN/manga is not ground breaking either), worth check it out if you read LN/manga.

    I admire Fromsoft because the small team can churn out some incredibly atmospheric games that make those games from giant studios look like child play. Their gameplay imo is 'ok', as an action game veteran (old man) fan, mechanics are overall fun but annoying at times (and you could overcome them when you are going later of the game), 1-3 bosses are challenging in each game basically and that's it.

    The best feature imo from the team is that the overall design of the stages/atmosphere/visuals where players could immerse themselves into their games (worlds) for hours (to days monthss), the gameplay is more like engaging the players (and rewarding when you could beat XYZ), and then all elements are nicely built on the world setting/lore (doesn't need to be new but they are always interesting or refreshing to some players). The visions from miyazaki/team is incredible.

    My favourite Fromsoft game is actually BB - fecking cant wait for 4k remastered on PC woooo - because i love lovecraft stories, victorian style / artstyle and BB was the reason i bought ps4 lmao.

    To me is all about the balance: game play, visuals, soundtrack and story. And ye for action RPG, honestly story is the lowest priority (i have replayed Megaman X countless times and god the story) - i think Fromsoft knows that too, thats why the lore are mostly written in item descriptions - if the player is keen to find out more then he/she will spend some (to stop playing) to read anyway. It is literally disrupting your game flow if you think about it when a cutscene comes up / when some stories need to be spoon fed to the players. In contrast, anything from Kojima is like some movie tied in stuff - i felt it was too much when i played MGS4 i remember (not even bother with playing death stranding). Each to their own aye.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    I seriously don't know how BB hasn't been ported or updated yet. Maybe they want Elden Ring out of the way first or something.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,356 ✭✭✭seraphimvc


    Likely because Sony owns the IP. I am not sure who is doing the remastered - could be a 3rd party actually - hoping we get confirmed news soon but ya it will be looking like mid-late 2022 earliest or 2023....



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    I would have thought Sony owning the IP would have made it more likely. They are probably more fond of remasters/remakes than any other publisher and Usually they are quite high quality. I dunno, maybe Bluepoints new game is a sequel and they will coincide the remaster with that - I can dream.



  • Registered Users Posts: 33,362 ✭✭✭✭Penn


    That's what the main rumour has been anyway, that Bluepoint are working on a Bloodborne remaster and also a sequel to it. Take it with a big "Winter Lantern's head"-sized grain of salt though.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,157 ✭✭✭Markitron


    Yea I remember hearing it a while back but I don't believe it for a second. They obviously have the minerals when it comes to the tech but that would be an intimidating first original game for them to tackle.



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    From seem to only have the team to produce one game at a time which is probably why they haven't been back to Bloodbourne. Again, same with Bluepoint, they can only manage one project at a time and I say it will be a while before they tackle another From game, if they even do it that is.



  • Registered Users Posts: 33,362 ✭✭✭✭Penn


    With Bluepoint becoming an official first party PS studio and with the original Blooborne not requiring as much remastering as Demon's Souls, I don't think it's outside the realms of possibility that the rumours are true (or at the very least that they're deep into the remaster but very early in working on a new Bloodborne). But at the same time, like most rumours, it seems like it's very much based on what people want to happen rather than any signs that it actually is happening.



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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Computer Games Moderators Posts: 50,987 CMod ✭✭✭✭Retr0gamer


    Yeah I'd love for it to be true but there's nothing concrete and since it wasn't in the nvidia leak I'd say it's a long way out (2024 at earliest) if it's coming at all.



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