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Thread: Game Mechanics - Contextual jumping, leaning, swooping and mantling - All Discussion

Game Mechanics - Contextual jumping, leaning, swooping and mantling - All Discussion

  1. #26
    Originally Posted by The Tingler
    Leaning only on corners? Sure, why not? Why does this matter, where else are you going to lean?
    The shadows. If you needed to peek out from a dark spot that has no cover, the lean mechanic was perfect for such a situation.

  2. #27
    Originally Posted by Jerion
    Where did this idea that swoop is contextual come from? It was freeform.
    Swoop and Jump use the same button. They have to be contextual. Okay, rather than posing that question to us and a mod reinforcing your retort, please take the time to educate us in some detail on how it's not contextual. It was a chance to dispell an apparent rumor, yet you just treat us like we're being uneducatedly obtuse. Like we have no basis for said claim when all evidence we've seen points to this reality. And so you make a quick jab that does nothing but says, "I'm right and I know why, but I'm not going to tell you why." Not very kind or productive, imo

    Swoop was probably freeform as long as you weren't next to a wall you can mantle ot an item you could jump on. That, to me, is contextual: I'm not allowed to swoop when next to such a place, but I can anywhere else.

  3. #28
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    Originally Posted by Jonah47
    The shadows. If you needed to peek out from a dark spot that has no cover, the lean mechanic was perfect for such a situation.
    Not taking a side in this discussion at all, but I'm curious why you need to lean out of the dark. Are you blind while in the shadows?

    Originally Posted by DarknessFalls
    Swoop and Jump use the same button. They have to be contextual. Okay, rather than posing that question to us and a mod reinforcing your retort, please take the time to educate us in some detail on how it's not contextual. It was a chance to dispell an apparent rumor, yet you just treat us like we're being uneducatedly obtuse. Like we have no basis for said claim when all evidence we've seen points to this reality. And so you make a quick jab that does nothing but says, "I'm right and I know why, but I'm not going to tell you why." Not very kind or productive, imo
    If you're going strictly by the dictionary definition, then yes; swooping is contextual. But the context is "Anytime except when looking at a ledge you want to mantle." It's far more freeform that you're painting it out to be. I never once had a problem using the swoop when I wanted to, and the mantling/climbing mechanic never clashed with the swoop during gameplay.

    And if our reply was short, it's because we've probably already answered this question in the AMA thread previously. At some point giving an in depth reply to questions we've already answered becomes extremely tedious, which is why we have the summary post to begin with. If you have a question like that in the future, go over the summary in the front page first and if the question hasn't been answered then present it there and we'll answer it.

    Swoop was probably freeform as long as you weren't next to a wall you can mantle ot an item you could jump on. That, to me, is contextual: I'm not allowed to swoop when next to such a place, but I can anywhere else.
    No. You have to look at the ledge you want to mantle. Simply being next to it isn't enough context to override the swoop command, so this fear of yours above is unsubstantiated.
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  4. #29
    Originally Posted by Master Taffer
    Not taking a side in this discussion at all, but I'm curious why you need to lean out of the dark. Are you blind while in the shadows?
    Maybe you're shooting a water arrow, and there's something between you and your target, like an AI or other object. Or maybe you're standing back away from a corner just far enough that you're not considered against it. Or dozens of other scenarios. It could be anything. Maybe you're shooting a rope arrow at one of the tiny little hotspots the game allows, and you can't quite see it from where you are, but you don't want to leave your hiding spot in the shadows.

    The real question is, why can't you lean anywhere you want?

  5. #30
    So if mantling is context based in the sense that you must be near something you can mantle, does that mean one cannot jump at any point they wish? If you wish to jump a gap that the developers did not forsee you wanting to jump, will you be unable to do so?

  6. #31
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    Originally Posted by brethren
    Maybe you're shooting a water arrow, and there's something between you and your target, like an AI or other object. Or maybe you're standing back away from a corner just far enough that you're not considered against it. Or dozens of other scenarios. It could be anything. Maybe you're shooting a rope arrow at one of the tiny little hotspots the game allows, and you can't quite see it from where you are, but you don't want to leave your hiding spot in the shadows.
    Or I found "leaning out of the shadows" to be strange wording and wanted you to elaborate. You're not talking about leaning out of the shadows in your examples, but rather leaning to get a better shot. I'm familiar with that, as I would do it to put out the torches in Bafford's throne room from the gong room all the time.

    The solution I would say is readjust your position. Your feet aren't locked where you are, and furthermore with the AI in the new game you're not necessarily 100% safe anywhere you are as they will adjust to events in the mission. If you put out that torch, not only will they notice, start searching, but eventually relight it and include the spots they searched in their new patrol pattern. They aren't like they were in the previous games and do, in fact, adapt as you play.

    Look, I get the "wanting to lean/jump anywhere" from the player perspective. It's a player agency thing. You want the freedom, even if it's without any actual purpose/illusory. However when I actually played the game, I didn't particularly miss it because I never felt restricted in what I did. That, ultimately, is more important to me.

    "These are the rules of this particular game, does it follow them?"

    The answer was yes, so I was never actually taken out of the experience and engaged in what I was doing. Aside from some tuning that needed to be done in the climbing detection (yes, I told them, pre-alpha, etcetera) I was able to go to places I wanted and do what I felt like doing.

    Originally Posted by Specter
    So if mantling is context based in the sense that you must be near something you can mantle, does that mean one cannot jump at any point they wish? If you wish to jump a gap that the developers did not forsee you wanting to jump, will you be unable to do so?
    We already said no, at the time we played you can't jump anywhere you want.

    Seriously, people. Go read the AMA summary and the FAQ thread. So much of this has already been answered and this is precisely what those threads are for.
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  7. #32
    Thanks for replying. I didn't see where you wrote it before. My mistake.

  8. #33
    Originally Posted by Master Taffer
    Or I found "leaning out of the shadows" to be strange wording and wanted you to elaborate. You're not talking about leaning out of the shadows in your examples, but rather leaning to get a better shot. I'm familiar with that, as I would do it to put out the torches in Bafford's throne room from the gong room all the time.
    Leaning to get a better shot can still done within the shadows. But we're just playing word games here, the OP didn't exactly say leaning OUT of the shadows, but I can see how it would be interpreted that way. In any case, the point is that there are scenarios where you might want to lean when not on a corner, so given that, I'm not exactly thrilled with the limitations the new leaning system implements.

  9. #34
    Originally Posted by MasterTaffer
    Look, I get the "wanting to lean/jump anywhere" from the player perspective. It's a player agency thing. You want the freedom, even if it's without any actual purpose/illusory. However when I actually played the game, I didn't particularly miss it because I never felt restricted in what I did. That, ultimately, is more important to me.
    You only saw like 30 or 60 mins of the game. i hope the giant game with large levels, an open world city and probably at least 15-30 hours of gameplay (not announced yet) has every nook and cranny covered by the devs to fully predict how we will want to be operating

  10. #35
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    Originally Posted by DarknessFalls
    You only saw like 30 or 60 mins of the game. i hope the giant game with large levels, an open world city and probably at least 15-30 hours of gameplay (not announced yet) has every nook and cranny covered by the devs to fully predict how we will want to be operating
    For the record, I played 90 minutes of the game; 60 minutes more than the press and 30 minutes more than my fellow E3 attendees.

    Yes, there will be a lot of area through the game, but players will have to traverse the world with the movement dimensions and tools they are designed with. The same is true for any game, including the original Thief games.
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  11. #36
    Exactly. But most games don't give you as much freedom as the original Thief does. Just bummed the new Thief is going down that road. I feel slightly constrained in every game I can think of; Thief feels the least constraining for me.

  12. #37
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    Originally Posted by DarknessFalls
    Exactly. But most games don't give you as much freedom as the original Thief does. Just bummed the new Thief is going down that road. I feel slightly constrained in every game Incan think of; Thief feels the least constraining for me.
    You feel constrained before you've even played it, which is why it rings false with me. That type of stuff (feeling constrained, immersion, etcetera) are "in the moment" sensations. Judging it without being hands on is patently flawed, and if you do get hands on and decide to entirely focus on a preconceived notion about the controls it's going to just dig at you the whole time.

    Case in point, swimming in Thief: DS. I thought it was weird that he couldn't swim after being able to in 1 and 2. Then I put it out of my mind, and enjoyed the game a lot more because of it. If I spent all my time looking at the differences between DS and the previous games I would not have enjoyed the game much. I'm not going to poison my experiences that way; it's self sabotage.

    I went in and played with the tools I was provided, and I NEVER felt constrained in what I was doing. I could climb on what I wanted and move in the level anywhere I thought I could. There was only one spot where I said I thought I could move and couldn't, pointed it out, and they said they'd fix it. It stood out because it broke the rules I had seen thus far in the same game (squeezing between a tight spot). That was the only moment that stood out to me.
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  13. #38
    Originally Posted by Master Taffer
    Case in point, swimming in Thief: DS. I thought it was weird that he couldn't swim after being able to in 1 and 2. Then I put it out of my mind, and enjoyed the game a lot more because of it. If I spent all my time looking at the differences between DS and the previous games I would not have enjoyed the game much. I'm not going to poison my experiences that way; it's self sabotage.
    Right, but at that point you're just settling for less - you'd prefer to be able to swim in TDS if you could, right? But the game is released, so you know that's just how it's going to be, and you get the most you can out of the game. I understand that.

    This is different. The game is still being worked on. The devs have stated how things are now, but we don't have to just accept that yet. The mechanics can still be changed. If I don't believe the game is headed in the right direction, I'm going to speak up. Part of the onus is on you guys, the ones who've actually played the game. If you speak up about something you don't like (even if it's in private), they (the devs) have to listen.

  14. #39
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    Originally Posted by brethren
    Right, but at that point you're just settling for less - you'd prefer to be able to swim in TDS if you could, right? But the game is released, so you know that's just how it's going to be, and you get the most you can out of the game. I understand that.

    This is different. The game is still being worked on. The devs have stated how things are now, but we don't have to just accept that yet. The mechanics can still be changed. If I don't believe the game is headed in the right direction, I'm going to speak up. Part of the onus is on you guys, the ones who've actually played the game. If you speak up about something you don't like (even if it's in private), they (the devs) have to listen.
    Oh, no one is saying you can't voice your opinion. That's precisely what this board is for. However, the claims that it effects these various mental states like feeling constrained or being immersed ring false to me because they are inherently "in the moment" and require hands-on to truly manifest in any way.

    I told them everything I didn't like about the playthrough. Not only that, I played it in a "ghost/zero damage/no focus" playthrough because I knew you guys would be curious if it could be done in said demo (it can, though it is tough as it should be). I probably wouldn't have done it that way considering I only had so long with the game, but I wasn't just there for myself. I knew you guys would like questions answered, so I did my best to investigate what I could.

    I'm very happy with what I played and the majority of the things I didn't like can be attributed to it still being a work in progress. So in that regard, I'm good with the game.
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  15. #40
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    The bruises have healed. The blood has been washed away. The fractured bones are healing. EM is feeling much better, I'm sure. E3 was just a nightmare.

    But the guys up in Montreal are smart. I'm sure they listened. I'm sure they are working frantically to change the things that were brought up my virtually every single media outlet. They got a year. It wouldn't surprise me that the Thief we get in 2014 is vastly different from the one the mods played at E3.

    The only thing I wish is that the guys at EM would follow what the Square Enix President said they would do and, ".....shift to a business model where we frequently interact with our customers for our products that are in‐development and/or prior to being sold, have our customers understand games under development, and finally make sure we develop games that meet their expectations....by allowing us to interact with customers while a game is in development."

    Wouldn't that be great?

  16. #41
    Originally Posted by Master Taffer
    Look, I get the "wanting to lean/jump anywhere" from the player perspective. It's a player agency thing. You want the freedom, even if it's without any actual purpose/illusory. However when I actually played the game, I didn't particularly miss it because I never felt restricted in what I did. That, ultimately, is more important to me.
    Freedom which enhances player agency is by definition not illusory. Also, it's possible that the fact you didn't feel restricted might simply be a function of your temperament as a player. That is to say, lots of gamers really are yanked out of the moment by artificially restrictive maps that don't give a clever and convincing impression of environmental freedom (which is both distinct from and entwined with freedom of input). Look at Rage: despite it's other flaws, the game still could have been engaging if they hadn't completely undercut the open-world vibe with an ultra-restrictive, scrupulously railroaded environment.

  17. #42
    Originally Posted by contrarian
    In my humble, honest, objective opinion, TTLG Forum Thief Fans are not "True Fans" like the majority of EM Forum fans are. TTLG forum Thief fans comprise such a teeny tiny percentage of who will buy Thief and hold such radical views, that they don't even show up on the radar.

    In my opinion, I think TTLG fans are out to destroy the franchise. I honestly think they, if they had their way, would like to see Thief go down as a critical and financial disaster.

    A lost TTLG Forum Thief fan is a good thing. It means my favorite game of all time stands a chance.
    Whaat?!... I go to TTLG often to get info and reviews of fan-missions. Have you played any Thief fan-missions lately? I believe most hardcore" true fans " of Thief have done so.

  18. #43
    So the only move command I don't like in that list, the swooping, is not contextual.

    But jumping, leaning and mantling are. I don't think that’s a very good game design decision. Because if you make all those things contextual, then where is the challenge?

    You will always make that jump.
    You will always grab that ledge,
    You will always be perfectly hidden while leaning.

    In the old Thief games, jumping and mantling were vitally important for some levels (Like the Lost City). If you make them contextual, than a huge part of the fun to traverse said level is simply gone.

    Just click a button, click the button again, and again. *falling asleep*


  19. #44
    Exactly. Free movement trumps all.

    Originally Posted by MasterTaffer
    You feel constrained before you've even played it, which is why it rings false with me. That type of stuff (feeling constrained, immersion, etcetera) are "in the moment" sensations. Judging it without being hands on is patently flawed
    Not really, but you're free to believe so. If you can't watch a video and put yourself in the player's shoes, that doesn't mean nobody else can.

    Originally Posted by MasterTaffer
    and if you do get hands on and decide to entirely focus on a preconceived notion about the controls it's going to just dig at you the whole time.
    I can't tell my brain to stop analyzing. I won't be holding on to a 'preconceived' notion; I'll be observing reality and thinking it's a shame that movement is more restrictive than the originals' that came out ~15 years prior. If I want to jump, I want to jump. If I can't jump when I want, then that is inferior.

  20. #45
    Originally Posted by Specter
    So if mantling is context based in the sense that you must be near something you can mantle, does that mean one cannot jump at any point they wish? If you wish to jump a gap that the developers did not forsee you wanting to jump, will you be unable to do so?
    If one cannot jump say from one rooftop to another because the developer could not foresee it happening there then this game is totally ruined IMO. How is it possible that something you could do easily in Thief 1 & 2 ( jumping anywhere in rooftop missions ) cannot be done on the new Thief unless allowed by "context"? This is ridiculous.

  21. #46
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    Excuse me but if the swooping and mantling are filed under the same button, then how exactly am I supposed to get a running start and jump to grab a ledge, since jumping does not exist? I don't remember ever simply walking up to a wall and climbing up in Thief 1, I always move towards it and jump.

    There's no reason why it should be like this. It's incexcusable and no matter how much UE3 graphical goodness you sugarcoat the game with, it is shaping up to be objectively inferior in almost every regard, to what was possible almost 15 years ago. I mean, goddamn, where the hell are the developer's standards? Is EM's plan to design everything just above horrendous so that their mediocre accomplishments will look like revolutionary improvements?

    The only reason I can think of, and it's ridiculous, is that the developers want to absolutely enforce natural character behavior. Since a thief randomly bunnyhopping constantly through the city streets due to the player choosing to spam the jump button would be very unrealistic, they are making jumping illegal in any location where it doesn't make sense.

  22. #47
    Jumping hotspots added for your convenience.



    BTW, backward jumping spots won't be active until you steal the quest item. I mean, you don't want to get lost in this game, do you?

  23. #48
    Originally Posted by Master Taffer
    Yes, there will be a lot of area through the game, but players will have to traverse the world with the movement dimensions and tools they are designed with. The same is true for any game, including the original Thief games.
    That is true.

    But it's also a smokescreen.

    If I have a driving game that more or less sticks me to the ideal racing line and in which I'd always win as long as I kept pressing the accelerator, where my steering input only altered my lap time, I'd be traversing the world with the movement dimensions and tools it's designed for but you'd say there was no challenge and that the game was pretty poor.

    That would be because the split between Player Skill (the skill I have at playing the game) and Simulated Skill (the artificial skills my avatar has in the game) would be too far in the direction of Simulated Skill.

    The logical end conclusion of enhancing Simulated Skill to the nth degree whilst removing the need for Player Skill is an "I win" button. I start the game, I press a button, my avatar automatically does everything it needs to to win.

    Of course there is no game like this.

    But having so many contextual actions in a game that is primarily about sneaking and exploring is to misunderstand the nature of rewarding gameplay. In the original Tomb Raider games you had to do each action step by step - you couldn't just walk up to a small opening and automatically crouch and enter it. Similarly the new Splinter Cell game lacks some of the automaticity of Conviction (I saw it and spoke to a dev at Rezzed) because they paid attention to feedback.

    The gaming press hasn't embraced the new Thief. This stuff is going to go down very, very badly and to fail to see that and to argue that its all okay is to be willfully blind. I've been probably the most outspoken and vicious defender of this new Thief over at TTLG (just ask brethren). Until now.
    I want your brain... to make his heart... beat faster.

  24. #49
    I'll vouch for that. SE and I have had it out quite a few times, with me attacking T4 and him defending. But once all this lack of freedom of movement stuff came out, almost all the T4 defenders relented, because it's such a blow and it's such a big part of Thief gameplay to lose. People like SE, Chade, Renzatic, and others were suddenly saying, "how on earth can I defend THIS?"

    On the jumping thing, someone touched on it a few posts back, but I wanted to reiterate the point - how many times you guys played Thief, and had to make a jump, and kind of held your breath as you make the leap, almost crossing your fingers that you'd make it? That's a feeling of exhilaration and excitement, and that's completely gone now. As it stands, you just press X and you know you'll make it. Is that how you want to play Thief (or any other game)?

  25. #50
    Precisely right! You are left with no uncertainty. Its the same with hotspots for rope arrows. If you see one, then you know there is something there. It contributes to the elimination of true exploration.

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