New Thief Trailer, Same Old Worry

By John Walker on October 9th, 2013 at 3:00 pm.

It’s hard to know what to think about Thief. Previews haven’t been impressive, and it’s clear the project’s been through all kinds of hell. As we nudge closer to next February’s release, the trailers aren’t exactly inspiring us. This latest, described as a “gameplay trailer”, shows very little of that, and just makes me worry even more.

Well, have a watch first:

Did you spot much of the promised “gameplay”? I’m presuming that awful non-word usually refers to the bits where you’re actually playing. This is a trailer of cutscenes and fly-throughs. At least, I hope they’re fly-throughs. Because if that’s how Garret moves – like a floating camera in an engine’s tech-demo – this is going to be one weird game. Okay, so there definitely are a few bits of hands-in-the-screen first-person moments at around a minute thirty, but what I see here is a game that’s going to incessantly interrupt the action with in-game cutscenes where I’m not in control. That’s fairly typical of most big budget FPS games these days, because EVERYTHING IS AWFUL ALL THE TIME, but not Thief. Please, not Thief. It doesn’t look like he can open a door without it snatching away controls. And running through scripted destruction – that’s not the rooftop sneakery that anyone who wants to play Thief wants to play.

But then, it could be Trailer Syndrome. That dreadful disease that takes hold of games that rely on quiet, sneaky movement, where they feel the only way to portray things is the few loud, explodey scenes, or how will it catch anyone’s eye? Right now, showing quiet, sneaky movement would be the ideal way to catch people’s eye.

I’m certainly not deciding what the game’s going to be like based on these trailers. But it’s worth noting that’s in complete defiance of the entire purpose of a trailer. I’m clinging on to my hope that the genuine talent at Eidos Montreal can do this one proud.

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83 Comments »

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  1. Premium User Badge

    VelvetFistIronGlove says:

    It doesn’t look like he can open a door without it snatching away controls.

    I don’t have much beef with your other complaints, but that’s not true. The E3 gameplay clearly showed the player opening doors, with no more control-snatching-away than Far Cry 2 did.

    • serioussgtstu says:

      Door opening CONFIRMED.

      Now if only they could get their heads around those jumping mechanics, then we’d almost have a functional Thief remake.

      • Baines says:

        To be fair, they could have since decided that player reliant door opening wasn’t cinematic enough, and replaced it with cutscenes. Or maybe players were breaking the game by not opening doors, so they had to make it automatic.

        If so, maybe it can manage to morph into QTE events before release.

        • lokhe says:

          Damnit man, did you have to remind me of Dante’s inferno? :C

  2. Premium User Badge

    MajorManiac says:

    This game looks like it should be called “Dishonoured Splinter-Thief Creed”.

    • Corb says:

      Looks more like Drake decided to go back in time and get into the business of stealing stuff instead of “archeology”. His bad luck and tendencies to have everything ending with the surroundings being the leftovers of a michael bay film set followed him through the time portal.

    • Premium User Badge

      Grey Cap says:

      I think this stuff looks super nifty. A thief game? Not really. But Dishonored taught me that I love being a supernatural sneaky stealing person, and that silly superpowers make stealth better (teleporting was fun, why should I judge Garret’s new silent dash and time-slowing?).

      Now: Dear Thief 4, please please please understand how to properly rip off Dishonored.

    • Lagwolf says:

      It looks to me as if Dishonored (and its success) rattled their cage a bit. Hell even the new Thief game’s plot seems rather similar to that game. Of course, the fanbois will scream Dishonored ripped off Thief but modern gamers won’t really care.

    • The Random One says:

      “Princess, I heard you were injured while playing with your Little Royal Carpenter Playset, may I help?”

      “There was something stuck in my finger, but that nice man took it away for me.”

      “What? What are you doing in the princess’ chamber? Have you no honor?

      “I have none.”

      “Why did you steal the wood from her finger?”

      “Because I believe I should.”

      “Why? I don’t understand!”

      “I did not expect you to understand the Dishonored Splinter-Thief Creed. Farewell!” *jumps through window*

  3. dahools says:

    Well at least they’ve already announced the pre-order DLC thought they were going to miss the boat with that, next they’ll be announcing the sequel. When is this due out?

    Edit: i’ve just looked end of Feb!! I hate the way the industry has gone why can you not just buy the game and expect to get all the content they design for release at that time with out having to pre order or pay extra on day 1

    • Baines says:

      I doubt they’ll announce a sequel.

      The real question is when will Square Enix describe its sales as disappointing, and how badly did they overestimate its performance.

  4. Grover says:

    Day one DLC, too? I really hope this game is better than it seems. After all, Human Revolution had a cool trailer that showed no gameplay and some day one DLC and that was rather brilliant.

    • Mo6eB says:

      Well let’s run down the list of transgressions

      > removing the number from the title

      > blue/orange contrast with no other colours

      > dubstep trailer music

      > cinematic gameplay

      > time to crate: 10s (pretty sure I can see the corner of one)

      Final Score: that special kind of ennui, which happens when a game comes along and carries with it all signs it will disappoint, then the trailers affirm all suspicion of disappointment; all of it builds a dark and heavy feeling deep in the heart, and in the end there is nothing to do but let it out as a deep guttural sigh / 5

  5. Premium User Badge

    tikey says:

    Is it me or does Garret look less emo than before?

    • Blue_Lemming says:

      the face scar is also less visible..i am still waiting and seeing, till i part with coin.

    • Syra says:

      Sure, less emo, just more creepy.

  6. Judas says:

    I’d rater see the game delayed and reworked then have a piss poor version of a classic.

    Final Fantasy 14…Square Enix? Hello.

    • Wedge says:

      Unfortunately that’s already what happened… and this is what we’re getting as a result.

  7. PsychoWedge says:

    Well, they make him say “the city has changed and so have I”, so right there we are told that this game has got nothing to do with Thief except the name for brand recognition. I don’t expect anything overly similar to Thief but that doesn’t mean it still can’t be a good game. Just, you know, not a Thief game.

    • Syra says:

      Like what conviction/blacklist did to splintercell. In my opinion, only good things. Hope for some positive changes and some bringing up to date of the mechanics and gameplay.

  8. Pemptus says:

    Eh, I’ve given all hope of this being any good at being a “Thief” game. It seems like the only healthy attitude. The first two Thieves are still there and fantastic (and missions are still being released for them), so it’s all good.
    This game might as well be called “Pilferer” or something. Still, could be fun for a while.

  9. mentor07825 says:

    Lets not forget that there is a pre-order exclusive mission as well. Which is nice and all, but after its turbulent development I’m highly hesitant in pre-ordering this, despite being a fan of Thief. May as well just replay the third game and download all the fan made missions in the series to boot.

  10. razgon says:

    So, Marilyn Manson is now the new thief? Interesting.

    • BreadBitten says:

      I wish he was, the voice acting would’ve at least had some character to it instead of the apparent blandness.

  11. karthink says:

    Guys, ignore Nu Thief, because The Dark Mod standalone version is out. (Doom 3 no longer required.)

    In contrast to the Thi4f trailer above, the Dark Mod trailer is a big sigh of relief! Their website is down right now, but there’s torrent links in the forum.

  12. squareking says:

    I feel like I’m at the movies!

    D:

  13. Alas Away says:

    I don’t know, man. Looks pretty good to me. Little too dark for my taste but it IS a Theif game.

  14. fish99 says:

    Hard to judge just from a trailer, but I saw quite a bit of scripted stuff in there, plus they haven’t got the city or Garrett quite right.

  15. Moraven says:

    Trailers are nice to pique interest but they need to follow it up with a Developer Diary video with gameplay or simply just Stream the game… how Square is so inconsistent with community involvement baffles me.

  16. kwyjibo says:

    Can I pre-order the Blink move DLC?

  17. kud13 says:

    I was under the impression the whole point of being a master thief is that people question your very existence, because you’re never noticed, and stuff just goes missing.

    It’s kind of hard to wonder whether anyone uninvited has been around if everywhere you go ends up being on fire.

    • Premium User Badge

      slerbal says:

      It must be his new trademark (TM) and it reminds me of Home Alone – NuGarret has obviously decided to emulate the Wet Bandits. Will he also be defeated by an 8-year old child? Only time will tell….

      I’m not excited about this, but I am very excited by the standalone The Dark Mod – just a shame that their servers seem to have died today under the interest :(

  18. cmc5788 says:

    Is this game really being developed by the same company that listened to the community and made changes that resulted in an actual solid, decent Deus Ex revival? Because it seems like they haven’t listened to any of the community concerns about this game in any meaningful way.

    • karthink says:

      Same company, completely different team. Many of the leads worked on the Assassin’s Creed series before this.

  19. Eddard_Stark says:

    The Dark Mod 2.0 standalone got released today and we’re still talking about this Nu Thi4f?

    • Premium User Badge

      cpt_freakout says:

      The DM page just won’t load right now, it must be receiving like a thousand visits per second so until someone puts it up in a mirror or something, it’ll probably be unavailable for a day or two.

      • Eddard_Stark says:

        There’s a torrent already. Since it’s not a commercial release, it should be ok to use one.

  20. wat says:

    Mixed feelings…

    Some nice touches like the reach out and grab stealing from pockets, the minigames look fairly good, the lighting/sets are nice..

    but dear god with the stupid chase sequences, buildings falling apart, sensationalism..

    also, jesus christ with the dubstep, come on people. fuck. sigh. ugh. seriously, what the shit.

    The campiness of Thief 1/2 may be gone unfortunately.

    I will probably still pay $60 for it since not playing it would be worse for me than “boycotting” it for the sake of showing my dissatisfaction with aspects of it. Man I suck.

  21. Premium User Badge

    CelticPixel says:

    I actually like what I see. It looks like the world of Thief to me. Pleased to see he doesn’t look as goth as he seemed to in earlier previews.

  22. Premium User Badge

    cpt_freakout says:

    I STOLE TO SURVIVE AND NOW I SURVIVE TO STEAL

    • wat says:

      I wish the budget for this game was smaller so that they didnt feel it so necessary to add bullshit soundbites like that everywhere. At the same time.. for all the complaints, I still want to support the dev and play their game

      • Premium User Badge

        cpt_freakout says:

        Yeah, I mean, it does look OK and I’ll probably play it at some point, but man is the writing atrociously funny.

    • Premium User Badge

      slerbal says:

      If real life were like that quote, right now I would be shouting “I EAT CHEESE AND I CHEESE TO EAT!”

    • Ako says:

      DARK AND MATURE

    • Turkey says:

      Enable Garret in his compulsive hoarding addiction through 24 stunning levels.

  23. Trespasser in the Stereo Field says:

    Pffft. The only thing these crappy modern trailers did was inspire me to start replaying the original Thief. I’m amazed at how quickly I started ignoring the outdated graphics, and how soon I got sucked into the tense, straining sneaking around. I caught myself leaning into the monitor trying to peak around the corners and straining to hear any footsteps down the hall.

    Alas, Garrett! What have they done to you!?

    • empty_other says:

      Tried picking the games up again once i heard about Thi4f. Never played more than the demo of Thief 1, i thought, might as well start there. Thief 1 ran either in fast motion or slow motion depending on where i looked. Thief 3 had no sounds, only noise.. :(
      Then Dishonored got released, and the itch was satisfied.

      • fish99 says:

        Thief 1/gold, Thief 2 and System Shock 2 all had a new patch last year which brought them all up to DX9 and fixed the issues they used to have on multi-core CPUs. They should all be fully playable now.

        You can find the links over on http://www.ttlg.com in the forums (or just ask if you need links).

      • Trespasser in the Stereo Field says:

        I could never get my old discs working. I bought Thief Gold on Steam and followed the “Thief Gold Setup and Modding Guide” in the Steam Community and it worked like a charm on my Windows 7.

        • Premium User Badge

          Zephro says:

          I’ve never actually finished Thief 1. I think the lack of lean to the side keys bugged me as I started on Thief 2.

  24. Yosharian says:

    The dialogue is fucking awful…

    “Are you sure you’re up to it?”

    *cheesy smirk*

    Ugh…

    “First I stole to survive then I survived to steal”

    Isn’t facepalm-levels of bad, but not especially good either

    “It is all I know and all I will ever know”

    *facepalm*

    The bridge scene is just pure Call of Duty, just awful.

    “The challenge is everything”

    Actually a large part of Garrett’s character was that he stole to become rich, he never cared about challenge, because he respected his enemies, if challenge came about then fine, he’d rise to the occasion because he was damn prideful of his abilities, but he wouldn’t put himself in harm’s way just for the ‘challenge’. That would be just stupid. One of the things he says in the original when he has to rescue Cutty is ‘I’d rather not have to do this’ (referring to venturing through the undead-infested mines).

  25. Premium User Badge

    tumbleworld says:

    Well, it was a lot better with the sound off, but even so, I don’t think “gameplay trailer” means what they think it means.

    Still, I did enjoy Dishonored, so a big DLC might be amusing for a little. Hm? Different game, you say? The hell it is.

  26. kevinspell says:

    They could just rename this to Thief: Absolution. Because that is what we are going to get.

  27. Pixel_jackz says:

    As has probably been said many times before, this game would do better without the legacy of thief hanging over it. I just hope it’s not duke nuke: forever levels of bad.

    • Snargelfargen says:

      Yep, a new IP focusing on sneaking with magic powers would have been pretty great. Alas.

  28. Stochastic says:

    This does look like a very middling game at the moment. Then again, so did Splinter Cell: Blacklist, and from what I hear that turned out all right.

  29. SkittleDiddler says:

    Scripted, out-of-the-player’s-hands events in the first-person view really bug me for some reason. I’m normally against scripted crap just out of principal (unless it’s done right, like with the Tomb Raider reboot), but something about the way it’s done in FPS has always made me mentally and physically uncomfortable. It just dampens my overall enthusiasm for games like Far Cry 3 and BioShock Infinite, and it’s definitely dampening my enthusiasm for Thief 4.

    And stop with the cutscenes, Mr. Video Games Industry. PC gamers have little patience for that shit. Can you imagine what kind of slog Skyrim would have been if we were constantly interrupted with a fucking cutscene whenever an important plot point came up?

  30. xf11 says:

    “genuine talent at Eidos Montreal can do this one proud.” after what they did to deus ex?
    yeah, fat chance.

  31. KwisatzHaderach says:

    lol at the bird sitting on an invisible shoulder at 0:57

  32. Jason Moyer says:

    I love Thief, this doesn’t seem to be very Thief, but I still think it looks like something I’ll enjoy playing. Probably not as much as a proper Thief game or one of Arkane’s gems, but it looks potentially great.

  33. Vast_Girth says:

    I think it looks ok and could be quite good its not too cutscene-y. I like the look of the city.

    But both voice of Garrett and the horrible self commentary are just wrong wrong wrong.

    There something about his face which isn’t quite right either.

  34. Turkey says:

    They should’ve gone for the original modern day Thi4f idea. At least that would’ve been interesting.

  35. Kefren says:

    I don’t like silliness like a puff of smoke when you pick a pocket (or was that the guard boffing?) Also the bass sound when things go in slow motion, like modern action films (Sucker Punch et al). It’s just silly.

    • hotmaildidntwork says:

      I noticed that too. I mean has he got tiny smoke generators shoved up his sleeves so that he can reinforce his
      “Aura of Mystery”™ or what?

  36. zarnywoop says:

    From now on I’m going to pretend the game is called “Tea-leaf”, so that it can be whatever it needs to be as a game, and i can view it as being that – a new different game.

  37. neonordnance says:

    “EVERYTHING IS AWFUL ALL THE TIME”

    How did I know that this was by John Walker before I even checked the byline?

    John, it’s alright mate, sit down and have a cuppa and you’ll feel better, eh?

  38. Premium User Badge

    strangeloup says:

    This trailer actually made me feel a hair more optimistic, seeing as they seem to have added about six buckets of Dishonored since I last looked.

    Also, I’ve reinstalled Dishonored, so maybe I’ll finally get off the third bloody level.

  39. Husa says:

    Nooo, they’ve made Garrett some generic badass, who is supposed to be oh so cool. I’m getting such bad vibes from all these vids :(

    He always felt like a somewhat normal person who just happens to do what he does best. And took some pride, even though he was a thief. But he never felt like some uber hero. And the sort of guy that wouldn’t jump bridges if he could make it another way :P

    • captain nemo says:

      “…they’ve made Garrett a generic bad-ass..”

      Spot-on. With dialogue like “The challenge is everything”, there will probably be product placement from major sports-wear brands. Garrett would never spout such vacuous trash.

      Will not touch Thi4f with a barge pole.

  40. FRIENDLYUNIT says:

    Yeah I dunno. (Everything else aside) I actually dont mind opening a door or picking something up actually being more of a big deal and actually taking some time. Back in the other titles you could just go on a ‘frob’ spree without care, reason or planning. I like that last bit; a bit more thinking needed before you just pop the door open.
    (‘Cos IRL opening a door stealthily can be tricky)

  41. Duke of Chutney says:

    wub wub Thieves

  42. Ridnarhtim says:

    That voice …. urgh. That may just end up being the hardest thing to get used to.

  43. Rapzid says:

    Holy vignetting =/ Not sure I like the new Garret.. “The challenge is everything?” The old Garret seemed a bit more complex and interesting. Also, the new guy can’t do monolog quite as well.. I hope he isn’t stating the obvious to the player the hole game: “I need to get out of here”

  44. Bweahns says:

    I hate having control taken away from me when playing a first person game. It was one of the reasons I couldn’t get into The original Metro game.

    I kinda gave up hope for this game with the first trailer I saw. I also love the guy at the start of the video using the word ‘gig'; a word that sounds really out of place and wasn’t used until the 1920’s. The voices all sound runk and there is not a taffer to be heard.

  45. Tams80 says:

    It doesn’t seem like a full Thief game, but it still looks fun.

    In fact, I think it not being entirely like the other Thief games is good. I found Thief 1 and 2 to be boring. I like sneaking around, but they just felt so clumsy to play.

  46. Talon2000uk says:

    You know what strikes me as odd. This is the original trailer for Thief.

    Doesn’t it seem a little familiar to you. :D

    Combat. Check

    Cut Scenes: Check

    Dubstep: Well as close as you get to it in 1998.

    Bad Voice Acting: Check

    Could it be that perhaps we Thief fans are getting old?

    I don’t know how this new game will be, could be shit, could be awesome. Will I wait to order it. Hell yes. Will I wait for the reviews, by sites like RPS that I trust. Hell yes.

    Will I judge it on its trailer. Um no. If I had have done that in 1998 I wouldn’t have played and loved the Thief games for 15 years. :D