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  1. #41
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Berzee's Avatar
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    the abuse the poor keyboard suffers as a result
    Has anyone here actually experienced the "wearing out" of a keyboard key in this fashion? I tend to class such statements alongside other folk legends like "if you keep making that face it will stick that way".

    Regarding rapid-button-mashing QTEs though, yes, I think I would hate them; I can't remember the last time I played a PC game that required it, though (aside from odd little Flash games).
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  2. #42
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by P7uen View Post
    Oh lord it's all gone a bit abstract.
    Well, the only thing you've established as unique for QTEs is that you're being explicitly prompted to press a button, as everything else is already done: The contextual commands, the timed responses, the button-mashing.

    I get QTE finishers for SR3, between sync kills and sync melee, and press E to surf the hood of this moving car. They work fine.

    I had QTE commands all over the place in Sleeping Dogs - Press D to not fall off panel truck - and they worked fine, too. They're not just ways to fuck up cutscenes, nor are they always an unwanted intrusion.
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  3. #43
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    I have destroyed joysticks from move-from-side-to-side QTEs about 20 years ago, but never damaged a keyboard. Having said that, I have played very few PC games that involve button-mashing.
    Irrelevant on further examination of the rest of the thread.

  4. #44
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    The only QTEs I thought made sense were a scant few in the God of War games.

    The few that did worked only because:

    A) For enemies who could fight back, they were optional. You could just continue attacking regularly to kill them if you didn't want to bother. Really a good idea for the minotaurs who were the worst of all events - mashing a single button repeatedly.

    B) Some were more of a rhythm thing. You'd hit the buttons in a smooth rhythm and it felt more natural than "Hey press this button quick or you get crushed by a boulder!" But it still would have been better to leave the player more control, instead letting them actually DO the motions themselves instead of "Press X to dodge and now Square to climb up the giant's leg". Killing giant enemies should have been more like playing a miniature Shadow of the Colossus game than Guitar Hero.

    C) When there was no fail state. The game didn't punish you by taking away a chunk your your health or killing you outright. It patiently awaited your command instead of demanding action in what you thought was a cutscene you could sit back and watch.

    D) When the prompts were interesting. The last prompts for killing Poseidon and Hermes were deviously clever. I believe they also didn't have a fail state either.

    Things like opening doors and chests in GoW however were just nonsensical. How can it be so difficult for Kratos - a demigod who can literally tear people in half - to open a chest or door? Simulating exertion made no sense in those cases. But there could have been a fun little way to work that in anyway. If they had instead just asked players to move one of the analogue sticks up to open them faster they would have worked better because it would be much more appropriate context (moving a thumbstick simulates pushing/lifting something better than tapping a button) and it wouldn't bring the game to a halt if they player decided they didn't want to do it. It'd encourage interaction but not demand it for something completely mundane.

    The player should have more control in a game as technology advances. Why are we instead regressing into Dragon's Lair?
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  5. #45
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Lambchops's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Berzee View Post
    Has anyone here actually experienced the "wearing out" of a keyboard key in this fashion? I tend to class such statements alongside other folk legends like "if you keep making that face it will stick that way".
    My old keyboard had quite an unresponsive "s" key but that was over a long period of time for wear and tear rather than as a result of any particular game.

    That post took me longer to write than it should have as I had to spend a couple of minutes how to figure out how to avoid describing the key as "sticky." Somebody would have been a funny bugger, I just know it (largely because I would have!).

  6. #46
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lambchops View Post
    My old keyboard had quite an unresponsive "s" key but that was over a long period of time for wear and tear rather than as a result of any particular game.

    That post took me longer to write than it should have as I had to spend a couple of minutes how to figure out how to avoid describing the key as "sticky." Somebody would have been a funny bugger, I just know it (largely because I would have!).
    I've destroyed controllers, mice and keyboards to frustration more than I've destroyed them to wear and tear. Even a cheap $12 Logitech keyboard will last through years' worth of heavy gaming, even if the W, A, S and D all wear off their keys.
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  7. #47
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by P7uen View Post
    One very interesting and vaguely related thing I once chatted about (which is what you might be talking about with bit.trip but I haven't played it), is whether music played on something like Rock Band (which is much closer to the idea of an actual QTE, i.e. an on-screen prompt to press a specific button, followed by a time in which you must press it) is considered the same as playing from the sheet music on a real instrument. Essentially you read a thing which tells you to press that key at that time, then it makes a noise.

    Something in me wants to say it's not, but I don't think it is very different, and I also think it's a brilliant way of getting the cacked-of-hand like myself to be more musical.
    As a musician and a RockBand fan, I personally feel like they are very, very different. When you read music, there is no inherent sense of timing--that's all between you and your counting or you and your conductor or you and your fellow players. The type of muscle memory you learn that allows you to respond to notes on a page along to an internally registered tempo is very different from the kind that allows you to play with a song by ear and again from the kind that allows you to play RockBand. I have friends with no musical background who struggle to match rhythm or pitch in some songs that play Rockband just fine because they do it by QTE response alone. They tend to be better than me at drums until we hit a song where the music and the visuals are slightly off sync (I don't do better, they just do even worse than me :P I'm a guitarist/cellist, so drums aren't my forte in or out of RockBand) The main difference, of course, is the mechanics of the instrument. Drums and Keyboard are the closest (since you actually play on drums and a keyboard)--you're learning to play the actual instrument even if you aren't learning to play it properly or in a remotely standard manner. With drums you aren't learning a standard kit ... you're learning some weird bastardized kit, but you're still internalizing the rhythm of common crash patterns and pedal rhythms and so forth. On guitar? You're learning to play something as far from a guitar as a harp. I suppose sometimes you strum both of them?

    That said, I think there's a lot to be said for that kind of musical notation in theory if not in the specific practice of RockBand. It's very different from sheet music, but it has some advantages. So called "bar graph scores" are really cool. I think the increasing digitization of music is going to bring us some interesting notation systems so we can adapt the notation to the situation. We don't want to get too crazy, though--sheet music is already simple, easy to learn, and adaptable.

    Oh lord it's all gone a bit abstract. I don't know what the implementations are in any of the games you're talking about, but do you mean you see a spy and choose to be a sniper, therefore TF2 can be considered a game consisting entirely of QTEs? Well, yes any action that exists in our perception of the universe might involves a stimulus and a response at some point, and therefore can be considered a QTE, then sure, ok
    I'm pretty sure I said TF2 isn't a QTE in my mind. But you didn't really describe the thought process I meant to evoke when I mentioned that it could be considered one quite accurately either. The spy/sniper pairing wasn't important. More that as a Sniper, seeing a head pop-out of a hole can, for some players, behave a lot like a QTE. Point where you expect to see the enemy, click when you see the enemy. That's all I meant and again--I also said I don't consider it a QTE. Your corrected-for-exageration-and-sarcasm unniversal QTE is a much broader expansion of the QTE than I'm even discussing--let alone considering for my definitions of a QTE.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shoop
    B) Some were more of a rhythm thing. You'd hit the buttons in a smooth rhythm and it felt more natural than "Hey press this button quick or you get crushed by a boulder!" But it still would have been better to leave the player more control, instead letting them actually DO the motions themselves instead of "Press X to dodge and now Square to climb up the giant's leg". Killing giant enemies should have been more like playing a miniature Shadow of the Colossus game than Guitar Hero.
    The idea, as I usually encounter it, is to include non-standard actions that the player can't do in normal circumstances and that the player doesn't need to have access to in other circumstances. I've only sat in while a friend played it, but I seem to remember Shadow of the Colossus had a similar philosophy when it came to it's giant fighting. You respond to situational events and controls as you clamber around on a giant monster. It wasn't straight-up QTEs strung together as far as I can remember, but I seem to remember it wasn't particularly disparate from the usage of QTEs in more modern boss fights either. Except, evidently, in how interesting and well designed it seems in play. Perhaps I'm misremembering and the actions were standard from fight to fight?

    P.S. Wow. Totally mis-remembered quite how it worked. Watched some videos and I'm not sure why I remembered it the way I did. Or for that matter why it should be emulated exactly. As an experience, a lot of gamers seem to think SoC is one of the best games ever made, but at least from the Let's Play clips I watched I'm not sure that the mechanics would work particularly well if generalized to other games. They don't seem particularly fun or interesting out of context and I haven't played so I can't comment on the in-context thing.
    Last edited by gwathdring; 04-01-2013 at 10:36 PM.
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  8. #48
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    I've destroyed controllers, mice and keyboards to frustration more than I've destroyed them to wear and tear. Even a cheap $12 Logitech keyboard will last through years' worth of heavy gaming, even if the W, A, S and D all wear off their keys.
    I've never had a keyboard fail on me. I've had a wireless keyboard get sluggish on me and I've had keys get loud or stuck. Never an outright failure, especially not due to gaming.
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  9. #49
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Drake Sigar's Avatar
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    Never lost a mouse or keyboard, had these 'bout eight year now. Killed a few Amiga joysticks back in the day though. Chaos Engine, man. What a bitch.

  10. #50
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    The guy who though it would be great to add a "insta death" QTE half way through an 8 minute cut scene that I put the kettle on to needs a QTE with their head and a brick wall... ;)

    PS, I think there is a hidden message in this one. You get the better more proper ending if you DON'T press the button in the QTE (IMO anyway). http://youtu.be/FlPzDm6aB7g?t=9m24s
    Last edited by TechnicalBen; 05-01-2013 at 12:04 AM.

  11. #51
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    I've never had a keyboard fail on me.
    You've never played APB.
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  12. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nalano View Post
    After all, you can fuck up context-sensitive controls: Look at Mass Effect 3.
    Press space to get into cover, run from cover, jump over cover, talk to people, interact with buttons, sprint...

    Having recently played Devil May Cry 4, I was pleasantly surprised at actual cutscenes. For many of them, it could have been "Press X to mince" "Press E really quickly to get mad", but instead it was just cinematics done well.

  13. #53
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Barnox View Post
    Press space to get into cover, run from cover, jump over cover, talk to people, interact with buttons, sprint...

    Having recently played Devil May Cry 4, I was pleasantly surprised at actual cutscenes. For many of them, it could have been "Press X to mince" "Press E really quickly to get mad", but instead it was just cinematics done well.
    On the opposite side of the spectrum, we have Mass Effect 2, where you have both "left-click to punch this dude in the face, because fuck him" and "right-click to hug Tali. You know you want to."
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  14. #54
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    P.S. Wow. Totally mis-remembered quite how it worked. Watched some videos and I'm not sure why I remembered it the way I did. Or for that matter why it should be emulated exactly. As an experience, a lot of gamers seem to think SoC is one of the best games ever made, but at least from the Let's Play clips I watched I'm not sure that the mechanics would work particularly well if generalized to other games. They don't seem particularly fun or interesting out of context and I haven't played so I can't comment on the in-context thing.
    Well it's unlikely they'd even be able to do something that ambitious in a game with so many other things going on. But what I'm getting at is keeping the player in control. Let them do that stuff you want them to do like dodge and counter, but don't make it just a "Press this button at this time" kind of thing.
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  15. #55
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shooop View Post
    Well it's unlikely they'd even be able to do something that ambitious in a game with so many other things going on. But what I'm getting at is keeping the player in control. Let them do that stuff you want them to do like dodge and counter, but don't make it just a "Press this button at this time" kind of thing.
    I'm just somewhat confused as to where you want the line drawn. What exactly is it about "press this button at this time" that bothers you? What are, in other words, some specific implementations that are problematic? That description is incredibly unhelpful becasue I think it describes things that work great just as I think "QTE" describes things that work great.

    I'm also not convinced that keeping the player in control at all times is necessary. I've played games where losing control or having a cutscene worked just fine for me. I'm really enjoying my first playthrough of Broken Sword right now, and the entire game is "Click here and something you have no control over is going to happen." Personally, I'd prefer a game that had more difficult puzzles and maybe adventure games are a bad example. They are, by nature, about as on-rails as gaming gets. I don't think that's bad, though, even when it's inserted into a less rail-roady genre at an opportune moment.

    Perhaps a better example, my standby it seems, is Arkham City. You get to control Batman during plenty of awesome heroics. The game has Batman do things in cutscenes both that are more and less awesome than stuff you get to do during game-play. You lose control at breakpoints in the action, and you have limited control when you're being fed information about the plot or mechanics that's crucial to proceeding. Whenever you lose control, something interesting happens to the plot. There's a decent sense of pacing and rhythm. The game plays with various kinds of limiting control to. It doesn't always work, but I give the game credit for being a multi-trick pony. I got stuck in an elevator, locked into a building, locked out of a building, knocked unconscious ( a few times, so that's old news), sucked into a drug-drenched alternate reality (that happened twice, three times across all of the games, so that's a bit old-hat too), trapped under rubble ... it wasn't always perfect or anything but I don't remember feeling frustrated except during some of the calls to Oracle. You'd think Batman could run and talk on the phone at the same time.
    Last edited by gwathdring; 05-01-2013 at 06:23 AM.
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  16. #56
    Activated Node P7uen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    As a musician and a RockBand fan, I personally feel like they are very, very different.
    That's what I found weird about the Rocksmith game, which by the looks of it seems to be animated guitar tabs. Seems like it's a mid-point between just playing an instrument and having a more gamey/cheaty method like RockBand, but that would seem to be of little interest to musicians and out-of-reach for people who can't already play them...

    Those bar graph things are fantastic, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    The idea, as I usually encounter it, is to include non-standard actions that the player can't do in normal circumstances and that the player doesn't need to have access to in other circumstances.
    From a certain point of view, if you have to have a QTE to walk forward in a slightly different way than normal, and it's the only time it appears in your 20+ hour game, that maybe be considered a failure of design. You could lose it, or you could just have them walk normally across the burning plank. Then again, it was Far Cry 3, so it was probably satirising QTEs and people who walk, in which case the joke is on me.

  17. #57
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    Perhaps a better example, my standby it seems, is Arkham City. You get to control Batman during plenty of awesome heroics.
    Yeah more like that. Not the insanely stupid "Mash button to open grate" but the combat. It's more of a rhythm instead of "Now press this button repeatedly when the prompt appears so it feels better. You don't even stop to think about all you're doing is still hitting buttons in sequence.

    What I'm hoping for is they either make the prompts more clever like the two I mentioned in God of War 3, and/or make sure the player has the ability to do some of the things the QTEs in real-time instead of it just being a one time deal. Maybe use a QTE as an introduction to a new ability as sort of a mini tutorial.

    Quote Originally Posted by P7uen View Post
    Then again, it was Far Cry 3, so it was probably satirising QTEs and people who walk, in which case the joke is on me.
    Given how miserably Far Cry 3 failed at satire, I'd say you're in the clear.
    Last edited by Shooop; 05-01-2013 at 04:21 PM.
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  18. #58
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus gwathdring's Avatar
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    Those bar graph things are fantastic, though.
    :D If you have any Midi files, knock yourself out: http://www.musanim.com/player/

    From a certain point of view, if you have to have a QTE to walk forward in a slightly different way than normal, and it's the only time it appears in your 20+ hour game, that maybe be considered a failure of design.
    I'd say the failure happens when the player disagrees with the designer that it has to be there. If you put the player in a space where walking forward that one time needs to be dramatic and pressing a button to do it instead of just having a cutscene is also important to them ... then it's cool. It's just damn hard to find an example where walking forward deserves that kind of treatment--at least, not the QTE style of dramatic treatment in particular. The design failure isn't that you resorted to a QTE for walking forward, it's that you inserted a bad QTE into a space players weren't on board with.

    What I'm hoping for is they either make the prompts more clever like the two I mentioned in God of War 3, and/or make sure the player has the ability to do some of the things the QTEs in real-time instead of it just being a one time deal. Maybe use a QTE as an introduction to a new ability as sort of a mini tutorial.
    Those are both cool ideas, and I think they match up with hedge-case QTEs that function in existing games (well, obviously the first one does).
    I think of [the Internet] as a grisly raw steak laid out on a porcelain benchtop in the sun, covered in chocolate hazelnut sauce. In the background plays Stardustís Music Sounds Better With You. Thereís lots of fog. --tomeoftom

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  19. #59
    Lesser Hivemind Node Shooop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gwathdring View Post
    Those are both cool ideas, and I think they match up with hedge-case QTEs that function in existing games (well, obviously the first one does).
    Hence why I strongly suspect most QTEs are just developer laziness. They actually can be done in interesting ways, but no one seems to actually sit down and think about how to go about it. For those two in GoW3, there were lots of others that felt completely unnecessary.
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