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Thread: What should EM do with Thief?

What should EM do with Thief?

  1. #1

    What should EM do with Thief?

    Curious to know what the regulars around here think. So EM/SE still own the rights to the Thief franchise. What will they do with it?

    Sequel to the recent game?
    Sequel to the original games?
    Another reboot?
    An entirely new story/protagonist?
    Maybe a side story? (origins of The Hammerites, or a Keeper narrative).
    Nothing?

    I'm kind of assuming, even though the recent reboot didn't really take the gaming world by storm, that when they purchased the franchise they envisioned getting more than one game out of it.

    Also, we heard a while back that a certain percentage of the Thief team had been laid off (10, 15%?). So, what are the rest of them working on? They've got to be doing something.

    And finally - timeline. With some of the bad reviews for Thief 2014, do you wait a year or two and then start over? Or do you just shelve the franchise for 5 years and focus on Deus Ex?

    Opinions and thoughts, please...
    "I can see only one good thing coming from a Thief 4. Mark my words on this one. It will make people love Deadly Shadows." -Digital Nightfall (4/4/2008)

  2. #2
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    I have no preference with regard to a sequel. EM can design it around the recent or the original games. Both can work provided a few improvements are carried out (as already discussed at length in the fan review thread). EM should give us a good mix of the old and new next time around... I think this could work really well.
    I would not like to see Garrett replaced as the protagonist.


    ...when they purchased the franchise they envisioned getting more than one game out of it.
    Absolutely. I've always viewed the reboot as a springboard to launch the franchise back to market. The deed done, EM can pretty much go anywhere they want now. I hope they will lean a little more toward the older games when it comes to some of the game mechanics, factions and environments.

    Yeah, its kind of normal in this industry for staff to come and go. I expect many simply moved on to new projects within the company or with other studios.

    Not all the reviews were bad so I don't see any real concern for EM. I expect they will continue developing current project(s) and thereafter return to Thief. I am guessing it could be another few years yet.
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  3. #3
    Originally Posted by brethren
    Sequel to the recent game?
    Most probably.
    Originally Posted by brethren
    Sequel to the original games?
    Perhaps they would like to create it, but in this case they should fire the persons who are in charge for the narrative we saw in the last game.
    Originally Posted by brethren
    Another reboot?
    That would be a suicide for them. Hell no!
    Originally Posted by brethren
    An entirely new story/protagonist?
    Probably. That Erin... Although I would prefer to NOT see her anymore.
    Originally Posted by brethren
    Maybe a side story? (origins of The Hammerites, or a Keeper narrative).
    That would be great! But I doubt that EM will even try to create something like that - they just hate the original trilogy.
    Originally Posted by brethren
    Also, we heard a while back that a certain percentage of the Thief team had been laid off (10, 15%?). So, what are the rest of them working on? They've got to be doing something.
    Deus Ex 4.
    Originally Posted by brethren
    And finally - timeline. With some of the bad reviews for Thief 2014, do you wait a year or two and then start over? Or do you just shelve the franchise for 5 years and focus on Deus Ex?
    I think next time the situation will probably be the same: they will release a good DX game, and after two-three years they will release a mediocre Thief game.

  4. #4
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    ...they just hate the original trilogy.
    They do....
    Too funny.
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  5. #5
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    They do....
    Too funny.
    What? You think they love the original trilogy? Ok, prove it !

  6. #6
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    Originally Posted by MoroseTroll
    Ok, prove it.
    Even funnier.
    The only one making any claim here is you, so therefore the ball is in your court to offer proof, not I.
    All I did there was wonder if what you said was true; and I chuckled at the thought of it.


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  7. #7
    As odd as this sounds, I'd rather that THIEF was simply left alone. I love the Thief games, but I've always felt that the original trilogy stood fine on its own without another sequel or reboot. The series has had a good run, but perhaps it's time to put it to rest and move on to creating new games that expand on the Thief while still retaining what made it work in the first place. I still believe that THIEF would've been much better received by fans (including me) if it had been a new IP rather than a reboot; that way they would've had the liberty of doing whatever they wanted without mucking up the rest of the franchise.

  8. #8
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    Originally Posted by InDIGnation
    I'd rather that THIEF was simply left alone. I love the Thief games, but I've always felt that the original trilogy stood fine on its own without another sequel or reboot.
    I have to disagree. I love the games too and, yeah, the trilogy is fine - but I still wish to enjoy future endeavours. Those that don't want, don't have to take.


    The series has had a good run, but perhaps it's time to put it to rest and move on to creating new games that expand on the Thief while still retaining what made it work in the first place.
    Can you clarify. You are saying you want to put the series to rest and yet you still ask for new games that expand on Thief?

    I still believe that THIEF would've been much better received by fans (including me) if it had been a new IP rather than a reboot...
    I do not share this belief. The only people I've noticed really demanding that it had been a new IP were the ones that didn't like anything about the new game at all. No idea if that includes yourself?
    I liked more than I disliked about Thief and I'm happy for EM to learn from any shortcomings and make improvements in a future sequel.
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  9. #9
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    Can you clarify. You are saying you want to put the series to rest and yet you still ask for new games that expand on Thief?
    Apologies; me no do grammar good at the moment, long day at college.

    What I meant was that developers should still hold on to the core values of the Thief series, but take it in new and interesting directions with different settings and characters. As flawed as it was, I felt Dishonored was a fairly good example of this; it still retained some of the core ideas behind Thief while using that to explore different design choices and settings (although that game was admittedly more of a spiritual successor to Deus Ex rather than Thief). I'm not saying Thief should be buried and forgotten about, I'm saying that developers should take its strengths and build on them in new and interesting ways. The Dark Mod is another good example of this; it improves on the Thief formula without sacrificing what made it good to begin with and without actually being a Thief game.


    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    I do not share this belief. The only people I've noticed really demanding that it had been a new IP were the ones that didn't like anything about the new game at all. No idea if that includes yourself?
    I know I've been rather...vocal...about my opinion of THIEF, but I don't actually think it's an outright "bad" game. After doing another playthrough, I've re-evaluated my opinion somewhat and there's quite a few things I've grown to like about it. While I find the central stealth mechanics to be a tad simplified compared with the originals, it's still generally quite an enjoyable and tense moment-to-moment stealth game. The use of hub missions is probably the game's biggest strength; since the levels are quite tight anyway, the idea of packing a bunch of 'mini-Thieves' into the hub really does liven up an otherwise empty game world

    I've also started paying more attention to the dialogue and, to be honest, it's not all that bad. The main story dialogue is still cringeworthy, but some of the incidental guard dialogue, particularly with the Lenny side-mission, genuinely made me laugh (and not unintentionally either). Shame the plot writing is still tripe-on-bike, but that can hopefully be improved on in the future.

    However, replaying THIEF has opened my eyes to what the game really is: a potentially great stealth game squandered by its lack of focus in both mechanical design and the world lore. To me, the references to old Thief are so fleeting and pointless that they might as well have not bothered with them. Without the added pressure of trying to stay true to the franchise, I think EM could've squeezed a lot more out of THIEF's solid premise to make something truly memorable.

    So no, I'm not asking for a new IP because I have an unbridled dislike for the reboot, but because I think it would've made a genuinely better game. And at the end of the day, that's all that matters.

  10. #10
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    Originally Posted by InDIGnation
    What I meant was that developers should still hold on to the core values of the Thief series, but take it in new and interesting directions with different settings and characters.
    I'm not saying Thief should be buried and forgotten about, I'm saying that developers should take its strengths and build on them in new and interesting ways.
    Okay. And isn't this exactly what they did? Take the game to new and interesting directions with different settings and characters? Other than the main character and The City, of course.
    It goes without saying that there is much EM got right... and also things they got wrong. It was their first attempt, so next time I hope EM will take Thief further back to its roots. And when I say roots, I'm talking green, leafy vines.


    I know I've been rather...vocal...about my opinion of THIEF, but I don't actually think it's an outright "bad" game. After doing another playthrough, I've re-evaluated my opinion somewhat and there's quite a few things I've grown to like about it.
    I've also started paying more attention to the dialogue and, to be honest, it's not all that bad. The main story dialogue is still cringeworthy, but some of the incidental guard dialogue, particularly with the Lenny side-mission, genuinely made me laugh (and not unintentionally either).

    However, replaying THIEF has opened my eyes to what the game really is: a potentially great stealth game squandered by its lack of focus in both mechanical design and the world lore. To me, the references to old Thief are so fleeting and pointless that they might as well have not bothered with them. Without the added pressure of trying to stay true to the franchise, I think EM could've squeezed a lot more out of THIEF's solid premise to make something truly memorable.
    Fair comment. I understand exactly what you are saying and i agree.

    So no, I'm not asking for a new IP because I have an unbridled dislike for the reboot, but because I think it would've made a genuinely better game. And at the end of the day, that's all that matters.
    If the game was another IP with a different title and protagonist I don't believe this would have made it a "genuinely better game". What would have made it a better game are the things most taffers discussed in the fan review thread.

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  11. #11
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    The only one making any claim here is you, so therefore the ball is in your court to offer proof, not I.
    Ok. Let's imagine that I'm a developer who works on the 4th Thief game.

    What would I do if I love the original trilogy? I would do my best to make all its fans happy just by making the 4th game recognizable by them: the same protagonist (maybe even as just a cameo), the same factions (maybe plus one-two new ones and minus one-two old ones), the same voice actors for the protagonist and main NPCs, the same music & ambient composers. Also, I would name the 4th game as not as just "THIEF", but as "Thief: <something>", where <something> would be "The Gloom", "Questionable decisions", "The end of days", or anything else that could describe the new game.

    Well, what would I do if I hate the original trilogy? I would do my best to make all its fans unhappy just by making the 4th game totally unrecognizable by them: the new protagonist (though with the old name - just for laughs), the totally new, silly factions, the totally new, lackluster voice actors, the totally new, lackluster music & ambient, new, incredibly stupid dialogues. I.e., I would make the game totally unrecognizable as I can, so the only thing that would connect it with the original trilogy would be its name (not just "Thief", but "THIEF") and stealing.

  12. #12
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    Originally Posted by MoroseTroll
    Ok. *snip*
    Just to make it clear, I never actually requested any proof from you. The reason being that I don't believe for one second that the devs "hate the original trilogy" and someone's personal speculation isn't going to convince me otherwise.
    So you could have saved yourself the bother.

    Anyway, thanks for your contribution to this thread but perhaps read Brethren's introduction to get an idea of what he would like us to discuss.
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  13. #13
    Originally Posted by brethren
    Curious to know what the regulars around here think. So EM/SE still own the rights to the Thief franchise. What will they do with it?

    Sequel to the recent game?
    Sequel to the original games?
    Another reboot?
    An entirely new story/protagonist?
    Maybe a side story? (origins of The Hammerites, or a Keeper narrative).
    Nothing?
    Nothing. I originally thought they'd make a sequel, but I'm not so sure now. I AM sure EM and Square know that the limited success the game did have was due to the very well timed release just at the end of a long dry period for consoles and before all the Spring releases started to come out, and not due to the game's reception and reviews. If they released another title of the same quality, I don't think it'd be that well received, and they probably know it.

    That said, I'd welcome a sequel very much, and it'd be interesting to see if Eidos are capable of learning from their mistakes. If they fixed the five big things: less linearity, better movement, improved sound propagation mechanics, better writing, proper Thief lore, I think they'd have a decent Thief game. Whether or not they decide to take the vast amount of feedback (some more constructive than the rest) they've been given both before release and after on their approach to the Thief franchise is up to them. I don't doubt them when they say they're fans of the series... and they've had their fun with the IP but if they want to make a sequel I think it's time for them to show it.

    Also, we heard a while back that a certain percentage of the Thief team had been laid off (10, 15%?). So, what are the rest of them working on? They've got to be doing something.
    On their jobs page they have something going on called "unreported project 2"... could be that maybe, whatever it is? That or they've been drafted onto Mankind Divided.

    And finally - timeline. With some of the bad reviews for Thief 2014, do you wait a year or two and then start over? Or do you just shelve the franchise for 5 years and focus on Deus Ex?

    Opinions and thoughts, please...
    All I can say for sure is that if they are working on a sequel, we won't hear about it for a couple of years at least... They wouldnt want to repeat the reports of troubled development from last time, so they won't announce anything to do with Thief until development of a sequel is well underway.

  14. #14
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    Just to make it clear, I never actually requested any proof from you.
    No problem .
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    The reason being that I don't believe for one second that the devs "hate the original trilogy" and someone's personal speculation isn't going to convince me otherwise.
    I've provided you my opinion about that matter, whereas you haven't provided me your own one, just a standard "I don't believe" phrase.
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    Anyway, thanks for your contribution to this thread but perhaps read Brethren's introduction to get an idea of what he would like us to discuss. :thumb
    I've already answered on Brethren's questions.

  15. #15
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    Originally Posted by MoroseTroll
    I've provided you my opinion about that matter, whereas you haven't provided me your own one, just a standard "I don't believe" phrase.
    Sure, but I never asked you for your opinion (due to lack of interest)- and I am not required to give mine.
    I don't care what you choose to believe, as I'm sure you don't really care what I believe - so there is no point boring anyone with the details, is there.
    We have all listened to the dev interviews, podcasts and read internet articles and nothing there implies the devs hate the previous games. Nic Cantin, we already know, is a HUGE fan of the series.
    In a nutshell, your statement that the devs hated the trilogy defies all logic to me. That is why I don't share the same belief as you. Let's move on now...
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  16. #16
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    Okay. And isn't this exactly what they did? Take the game to new and interesting directions with different settings and characters? Other than the main character and The City, of course.
    That isn't what I meant. I mean that developers in general should use Thief as inspiration for their own games, just like what Arkane did with Dishonored, and TDM team with The Dark Mod. Neither of them are Thief games, but they take some of the core ideas of the series in a different and creative direction.
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    If the game was another IP with a different title and protagonist I don't believe this would have made it a "genuinely better game". What would have made it a better game are the things most taffers discussed in the fan review thread.
    That also isn't what I meant. Apologies, I'm not being very articulate at the moment.

    No, just changing the title and character names wouldn't have automatically made it a better game, but if it were an original IP from the get-go, then EM would've had more flexibility in where they wanted their game to go.

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    Sure, EM could have developed a new IP, allowing them flexibility to do whatever they wanted... but then we're talking a different game, obviously, and that's great if that's what we (Thief fans) want.
    It isn't what I want. Thief is (essentially) Garrett, in the City, stealing, sneaking, using his bow and special arrows etc. etc. That's what I want.

    All EM has to do now is make the suggested improvements. If they can do this, I believe the sequel will be a much better game... even a fabulous game.
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  18. #18
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    Make a sequel to the new one.
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  19. #19
    Yeah, if they do do a sequel I think that will be most likely.

    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    All EM has to do now is make the suggested improvements. If they can do this, I believe the sequel will be a much better game... even a fabulous game.

  20. #20
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    Originally Posted by garvin
    ... destroy the essence of this game.
    I don't believe they have destroyed the essence of the game; they definitely preserved much of it.
    For me, it is more a case of them missing some of the essence out. I felt disappointed with Deadly Shadows for similar reasons.

    As a reboot, I presume the first challenge for EM was to revive this (somewhat ancient and pretty much unheard of) title in an effort to introduce Garrett to the new gaming generation.
    A sequel will provide an opportunity to expand upon what they got right; and readdress the things they got wrong.
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  21. #21
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    Originally Posted by garvin
    destroy the essence of this game...
    Vague complaint is vague.

    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    A sequel will provide an opportunity to expand upon what they got right; and readdress the things they got wrong.
    Pretty much.
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  22. #22
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    Originally Posted by garvin
    I do not complain, i played Thief 10 mn and stopped..
    Ten minutes? Wow, I had no idea. Well that's clearly enough for you to make an informed decision about the entire game. Still, I'm surprised you made it through A Keepers Training in Thief 1, since you clearly abhor linear tutorial missions.

    You're doing a parody/being sarcastic, right? Just thought I would check since the idea of someone passing judgement on a game after ten minutes is beyond silly. I don't discount the idea that someone values freedom as an essence of the Thief series, but judging that this game is not about freedom after 600 seconds of play time in a game series that has two linear tutorial missions in its catalog already? You're taffin' around. You might as well just say you didn't play it, because in all honesty you didn't.
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  23. #23
    couldnt agree more. like i said, what i think is not important...
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  24. #24
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    Originally Posted by garvin
    ...what i think is not important...

    Well I'll give you a hug for playing at least ten minutes of the game before deciding you didn't like it.. .
    I've seen a few people write off the game before it was even released haha. So I think you possess more of a rational mind that them at least
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  25. #25
    Originally Posted by Viktoria
    All EM has to do now is make the suggested improvements. If they can do this, I believe the sequel will be a much better game... even a fabulous game.
    Almost certainly. I'm hoping that EM will have a bit more focus in the future now that they've had plenty of feedback for THIEF.

    @garvin
    Ten minutes? Seems a tad unfair; I personally think that an hour is more or less a fair time to give a game before decided whether or not to finish it. I still completed THIEF despite being biased well before it even came out, and not actually liking the game all that much.

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