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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus SirKicksalot's Avatar
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    BioShock Infinite in trouble? Modes cut, people leave, 2011 demo fake and more

    This started as a Kotaku rumor, but one crucial piece was confirmed after it was published. Irrational brought in a Gears of War producer to help finish the game.

    tl;dr:
    - a "significant chunk of the core Infinite team is no longer working on the game", including producers, level and system designers, the art director and other Irrational veterans
    - team lacked focus, dedicating months to stuff that was then cut
    - a lot of importance was placed on multiplayer modes which were cut (coop and tower defense with miniature players fighting toys lol). The game may ship SP only.
    - 2011 E3 demo "far from indicative of the actual state of the game", some of the multiplayer team was brought in to help finish it
    - the demo was made while "the team was wrestling with the most basic elements of the game, from the story to the level design to the AI programming to how to design the sidekick character of Elizabeth, who can magically conjure weapons and in other ways affect the environment." (LMNO anyone?...)
    - Gears producer Rod Fergusson was hired to help finish the game



    This sounds a lot like what the first BioShock went through - well, except for so many people leaving, so much money spent and no games to sustain the team while nurturing the impossibru project.

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus LTK's Avatar
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    It sounds like they're being pushed to tack on a multiplayer mode to a game that has no need for it. The initial idea of a steampunk arcade machine sounds interesting, so I think they're at least trying to make it distinctive rather than aping COD. It's admirable, but also a shame that the publisher thinks it's necessary. At least I assume it's the publisher.

    Also, E3 demo not representative of the final product? Stop the presses! This is unprecedented!

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus SirKicksalot's Avatar
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    The problem is not that it was not representative, but that Irrational was struggling with the basics during that time. And that was a year after the first demo.

    This brings up another question: what the hell are 2K doing? Off the top of my head, their other mismanaged projects this gen alone are RDR, Max Payne 3 (started last gen ffs), Agent, LA Noire, XCOM, Borderlands, Spec Ops, Mafia 2, Bioshock... even the final version of Prey spent 5 years in development before bombing. If it weren't for GTA and RDR, they'd share THQ's fate. Obviously they thought Rockstar is gold and approved their excesses, but what about the others?

  4. #4
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    I'm glad they're ditching MP though I'd much prefer if they didn't even bothered with it in the first place. I guess that "MULTIPLAYER" bullet point on the cover is hard to resist

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gundato's Avatar
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    Honestly, this sounds like the same problems Bioshock had, but on a larger scale. Which makes sense: They have a larger budget and larger expectations.

    Bioshock suffered from a hamfisted plot and many superfluous powers (honestly, you could beat almost the entire game with just the electric shock). The Little Sisters mechanic didn't even understand the basics of a karma system (there were no real benefits, at all, to killing the Sisters), and the Big Daddy was nowhere near the threat they touted it as. Bioshock 2 apparently did a much better job though.

    This is a problem that plagues a lot of devs: Time management and a focus on what is important. LA Noir's devs spent an obscene amount of time and resources on realistic faces, but the core mechanic was repetitive and "meh". Obsidian regularly runs out of time to finish games. Even Bioware screwed up when they were so focused on the personal story of DA2 that they forgot what people liked about DA:O.

    Say what you will, the various CoD devs basically know what they are doing. They aren't innovative in the slightest, but they pretty much have a checklist of what to do and they make damned sure to hit each and every mark.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirKicksalot View Post
    The problem is not that it was not representative, but that Irrational was struggling with the basics during that time. And that was a year after the first demo.
    In all likelihood it wasn't just 'not representative,' but not even actual gameplay. Rendered in-engine? Maybe. Something that a person was actually playing? Probably not.

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    Also this thing is taking forever to come out. It seems like I've been hearing about it for freakin' years without any signs of it ever reaching a release. DNF was basically killed by having an obscene development cycle such that nothing could have saved it. The only game to my mind that had a protracted dev cycle with accompanying hype and didn't suck on release was Half Life 2, and that probably has more to do with "OMG VALVE" and the fondness people have for the series.

    And the characters I guess.

  8. #8
    Moderator Anthile's Avatar
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    I am surprised they even bothered with multiplayer in the first place. Did anybody play the mp in Bioshock 2, PC or console? I can't believe it was popular enough to warrant another inclusion.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by soldant View Post
    Also this thing is taking forever to come out. It seems like I've been hearing about it for freakin' years without any signs of it ever reaching a release. DNF was basically killed by having an obscene development cycle such that nothing could have saved it.
    I've been always saying, any game with development cycle longer than 2 years can't be good.

    Well, I don't care about the Infinite either way. It would still be worse than SS2 by a long shot.

  10. #10
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthile View Post
    I am surprised they even bothered with multiplayer in the first place. Did anybody play the mp in Bioshock 2, PC or console? I can't believe it was popular enough to warrant another inclusion.
    The design of the multiplayer was genuinely excellent reminiscent of natural selection but even more diverse, it was the peer to peer that killed it.

    I swear PBEM makes more sense. What divine arrogance tells developers to disallowed servers, or is it just DLC greed? GFWL will get the blame, but actually that seemed fairly well implemented.
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  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus c-Row's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mohorovicic View Post
    I've been always saying, any game with development cycle longer than 2 years can't be good.
    Yeah, who doesn't remember such abominations like StarCraft, Alan Wake, Half-Life 2 or the original BioShock? *shudders*
    - If the sound of Samuel Barber's "Adagio For Strings" makes you think of Kharak burning instead of the Vietnamese jungle, most of your youth happened during the 90s. -

  12. #12
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by c-Row View Post
    Yeah, who doesn't remember such abominations like StarCraft, Alan Wake, Half-Life 2 or the original BioShock? *shudders*
    Without exception you have chosen games which people judge* to be flawed. Why didn't you just day DNF and get a complete set?
    An overlong develop time is a bad omen of course but "it's done when it's done" is undoubtedly one of the best design schedules.


    *rightly or wrongly
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  13. #13
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus c-Row's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliocentric View Post
    Without exception you have chosen games which people judge* to be flawed. Why didn't you just day DNF and get a complete set?
    StarCraft and Half-Life 2? In which universe exactly?
    - If the sound of Samuel Barber's "Adagio For Strings" makes you think of Kharak burning instead of the Vietnamese jungle, most of your youth happened during the 90s. -

  14. #14
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by c-Robe# View Post
    StarCraft and Half-Life 2? In which universe exactly?
    So you think that Starcraft single player is independent of the design shackles that 90% of rts prescribe to? Do you think that Starcraft multi player was not even at its release a relic in term of interface and that it's gameflow while complex is more about speed and pre aligned builds than tactics or strategy.

    Do you think Halflife 2's driving section was not completely bloated and fighting combine troopers (the most common opponent) not completely banal.
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  15. #15
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    Guilty as charged on Starcraft, but HL2 was a mess.

  16. #16
    Lesser Hivemind Node fiddlesticks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mohorovicic View Post
    I've been always saying, any game with development cycle longer than 2 years can't be good.
    Half-Life 2
    Team Fortress 2
    Psychonauts
    Resident Evil 4
    S.T.A.L.K.E.R.
    Grand Theft Auto 4
    LA Noire
    Prey
    Deus Ex: Human Revolution
    almost anything Blizzard ever did

    A lot of these games have become beloved classics.

  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus c-Row's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliocentric View Post
    Do you think Halflife 2's driving section was not completely bloated and fighting combine troopers (the most common opponent) not completely banal.
    Yes, of course - that whole section spoiled the whole game so much that you could hardly rate it "good" anymore. I was so blind!
    - If the sound of Samuel Barber's "Adagio For Strings" makes you think of Kharak burning instead of the Vietnamese jungle, most of your youth happened during the 90s. -

  18. #18
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus sonson's Avatar
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    Alot of this thread sounds as though there are people who are glad or at least smug that things appear to be going wrong. I will never understand this.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliocentric View Post
    So you think that Starcraft single player is independent of the design shackles that 90% of rts prescribe to? Do you think that Starcraft multi player was not even at its release a relic in term of interface and that it's gameflow while complex is more about speed and pre aligned builds than tactics or strategy.
    The interface is absolutely fine for the design. You just don't like and/or understand what the game is trying to be.

    Yes, it has an execution component. It also has a great amount of strategy and tactics. A gamer complaining that Starcraft "has no strategy or tactics" is like a triathlonist complaining that triathlon is nothing but running and swimming, just because they suck at running and swimming so much that they have never reached the biking part. Strategic skill will always help you whether at low or high levels of play. It just can't compensate for large disparities of execution. And as in any game with significant hidden information, there is randomness and probability, and it takes a while to develop the strategic thinking and intuition to a point where you start to see beyond the randomness. It's also necessary to have somewhat consistent (not "fast") execution to see the strategy. While "pre-aligned builds" exist, asserting that the game is "about" them is just wrong - they aren't the interesting part of the game. Before the highest levels of play, you don't have to seriously tighten up build orders for efficiency. The reason one is recommended to learn some build decently at lower levels is that it promotes consistency, which allows strategic growth to begin.

  20. #20
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by victory View Post
    The interface is absolutely fine for the design. You just don't like and/or understand what the game is trying to be.
    The "it's not for you" defence, nice.
    For reference the reason I never enjoyed Starcraft when it came out was flaky Internet access and cheating AI, these days I just see it as a relic. I don't hate it.
    Last edited by Heliocentric; 10-08-2012 at 11:33 AM.
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