The progess so far. What do you guys think?

Discussion in 'System Shock' started by amurshock, Oct 25, 2017.

  1. Flatfingers

    Flatfingers Member

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    I'm curious about communication between NightDive's SSR team and Warren Spector's team at OtherSide Austin starting on SS3 as well.

    The point about NightDive changing the levels from the original System Shock is a good one. Are visual references to the original game off-limits to the SS3 team? Are they stuck referring to the original only via narrative? "Hey, remember that place on Citadel with the thing?"

    Another question from the Ancient Fan zone might be to note that the originals were PC-only, and to wonder how supporting the latest consoles is affecting the changes being made to the reboot. Having to make the game playable on a TV across the room instead of a monitor a foot from your face means embiggening objects and simplifying the world -- so how is this going to affect the interactive depth of the game world, and the "feel" of moving through the world, and the impression of the player's size versus the locations and objects in the world? Will having to limit inputs to the trivial set of buttons on a console controller (versus the many inputs of keyboard + mouse) limit the number of "verbs" available to players in the reboot?

    Will the original game's balance between exploration and face-shooting change in the reboot? "More DOOM-like" makes me nervous. If the reboot turns into a run-and-gun, where there's constantly something attacking players and preventing them from observing and perceiving and thinking and planning, a critical part of what makes the original game great will be lost.

    What's the overall design strategy for the changes to available weapons? What was sub-optimal about the original game's weapons (I can think of a few things; I'm not just being confrontational here), and what's the new concept guiding the design of weapons for the reboot?
     
  2. amurshock

    amurshock Member

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    I need to clarify this if you don't mind. The developers never said they wanted System Shock to be more like DOOM. What they said was that they look at how the new DOOM and Wolfenstein games were modernized and apply those principles to System Shock. That doesn't mean Shock turns into a straight first-person shooter. Based on what was shown in November, I believe this is especially apparent in the new art-style. The initial demo was heavily stylized whereas the new look tries to be more realistic. I personally prefer the stylized and more faithful approach Otherside is taking (based on the concept art) but we'll see. We haven't really gotten anything new from Otherside since May 2017.

    Maybe it's just the hospital deck that gets that big of a overhaul. It's true that the design and layout of the original hospital deck doesn't even remotely resemble a believable hospital environment. So yeah, maybe it's really needed to start from scratch in this case. Shoot, I find myself complaining about things way too often. Maybe it would be better to just sit back and let these guys do their thing.
     
  3. Flatfingers

    Flatfingers Member

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    To clarify, I wasn't implying I thought Jason or any other Official Person had said, "We want the reboot to be more like DOOM!" DOOM was mentioned, but only as you described it.

    What makes me nervous (as I said) is the idea that the pacing of DOOM is one of the things from that game that the reboot team might think is worth implementing. I haven't heard anything about changes to the pace of play in the reboot yet (that I can recall), so for now I'm just throwing that thought out there.

    For that matter, a related question: there's been at least one official comment about Metroidvania games as an inspiration -- what in the world does that mean in a practical sense for the reboot?

    I haven't played any of those games, but I'm at least vaguely aware of them and sort of generally what's meant: a kind of openness in exploration. That seems OK... but what other baggage does "inspired by Metroidvania-style games" carry that we fans ought to be aware of?

    Finally, I trust that folks on the reboot team are fans of the original game, else why reboot it? But I'm still very curious about what specifically they think needs to be changed from System Shock and why. So I hope it's OK if I still ask.
     
  4. amurshock

    amurshock Member

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    I am not sure if the developers will be able to give you a definitive answer to your question at this point.

    However it’s quite clear to me that especially the combat aspect of the game will have to change. Armed enemies in the original game were easily shot at from a distance or from around the corner. Sometimes you’d find entire pockets full of enemies, which were easily taken out one after the other. So in order to make the game fun, combat systems and enemy placements need to be re-designed. This is also integral in regard to pacing of the game.

    I’m all for a cohesive experience across the series and would appreciate if they’d bring the placement and behavior of enemies in line with System Shock 2. Why not let some enemies freely roam the levels whereas others occupy specific areas.

    Let me emphasize again how much I’d welcome close cooperation between NDS and Otherside. The current situation is absolutely unique. Two different teams develop individual games based on the same intellectual property and both games occupy the same fictional space (Citadel Station). There’s so much room to do great things but also a sizable chance to screw it up. And the critics are gonna be a lot harsher than us fanboys.

    Metroidvana? I also haven’t played either Metroid or Castlevania (which is a shame). So I’m not sure what to say. Maybe, in addition to exploration, it has something to do with how combat mechanics are designed?

    I guess if I had to work on the game, I’d most likely try to

    - break the original game down into individual gameplay, level-design and story elements
    - verify the function / purpose of each element
    - If functional, keep it
    - If not functional, update or replace

    I'm sure we'll get a few answers once work on the vertical slice nears completion. Or maybe even before then :rolleyes:
     
  5. amurshock

    amurshock Member

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    To follow up on one of my previous thoughts regarding enemy-dismemberment. When I think about it, dismemberment and a somewhat realistic physical simulation of body-parts is something I'd really want to trade for a "permanent path of destruction". Corpses in the original game used to remain on the floor in the form of a simplified 2D-textures. I'd definitely prefer something similar over anything else because it creates atmosphere. Or to put it differently, having the game engine clean up behind you doesn't add to the atmosphere. If the engine permits it and if the performance trade-off is reasonable, this may be something to think about. But I'm not even sure if it's possible without making the game look cheap.
     
  6. Flatfingers

    Flatfingers Member

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    If necessary for performance, what would you think about some kind of in-context way of removing corpses? Some variably crazy possibilities:
    • Floor robot drags body behind the nearest wall
    • Overhead "sprinkler" system dissolves non-living flesh
    • Nanites bubble up from the floor, with a neat dissolving animation (I like this approach, personally)
    • Corpses stay until the next time you get close, then they reanimate and attack, then splatter into nothing when "killed" again
    I agree it would be preferable for enemy remains to... remain... but I think I'd be OK with removing them if necessary.

    I'm considerably more "meh" myself regarding body part dismemberment. That was literally the only thing Dead Space did right as far as I'm concerned, but that means it's already been done. Extending every fight because you have to take down enemies piece by piece is a cheap way of lengthening a game -- I'd much rather see the pace kept slow by preserving the cramped and twisty geometry of the original game that encouraged careful exploration.

    This sounds pretty negative, I know. To be clear, I don't hate the idea of dismemberment entirely, and I'm not accusing the reboot team of sticking it in there just to compensate for making levels bigger/wider (which would speed up movement through the station and shorten the game). This is just me being twitchy about anything that changes System Shock from being an exploration game with some shooting to being a tactical shooter with some exploration.

    *twitch* o_O
     
  7. amurshock

    amurshock Member

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    Pretty cool that you came up with a few ideas this quick :cool: Personally, I'd rule these two possibilities out because it doesn't make much sense from a worldbuilding / storyline perspective. It would be difficult to justify clean up robots and gore-sprinkler-systems on every let alone a single deck of Citadel Station. The station is a home to scientists, station personnel and a few civilians and not to butchering barbarians. And I don't think Shodan is that cleanly. Again, doesn't make much sense to me. But that's just the way I feel.

    I especially like the one involving the nanites. Personally I was thinking about a few concepts as well.
    • 1.) Performance optimized remains, meaning the engine, after a while, removes all or most performance hungry, phyics-based attributes from the object and the remains remain more or less where the player left them. Player interaction with the remains would be reduced to the point where there maybe isn't even collision detection anymore. But what happens when a player shoots the remains or throws a grenade at them? It'd be kinda awkward for the bodies to not react to that, so I scrapped the idea for now.
    • 2.) Fast decaying enemies* leaving patches of blood on the ground. Somewhat in the style of the original. Let's say that enemies summoned by Shodan (there's the spawning areas all over the place, if I remember correctly) dissolve pretty quickly into a bloody mess or some other form of disgusting semi-liquid substance :rolleyes: Original station personnel who were simply re-animated or mutated by the hands of "you know who" and killed by the player, remain. I guess I'd be okay for remains to just disappear or teleport away when brought on board by Shodan. I'd still love to see traces of fights though, whenever coming back to previously visited areas.
    How did other games solve this particular issue? I think the original Deus Ex went for something similar to 1.)

    I'm no big fan either. I'd hate to see this game become gory or too violent. Every feature should have a purpose. No purpose, no feature. Rolling heads and stuff like that don't add anything to the world and its fascination.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2018
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  8. OGbobman94

    OGbobman94 New Member

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    I am LOVING IT! It looks like my money is going to something cool! Keep on the Update videos! Love the dismemberment system you got going here! The shattering is really cool, just keep up on the melee combat. Can't wait to see more of the combat system you got going on.

    I have to say The Medical Deck, I was getting a weird Alien: Isolation vibe, and that's not a bad thing; that means you guys are nailing the creepy atmosphere! And the shadows and lights is "*In Wayne's Voice* Excellent". Liking the medical deck, making it look like an actual medical deck. BUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUT! At the same time, I loved the Unity Engine one, cause it still had the colors that the original had. Now I get it, you guys want to go for a more horror vibe, which I am down for. But you don't have to use the greenish dark colors as Alien: Isolation did. System Shock 1 has its own set of colors it used to get the atmosphere correct. To that I hope each deck has its own, noticeable color. You know how Deck 1 had the Blues, Deck 2 had the Reds, Deck 3 had the Browns & Grays, Deck 4 had the Light Blues & White, Deck 5 had Whites & Grays, Deck 6 had the Greens & Browns, Deck 7 had Browns & Little of Red, Deck 8 & Reactor Core had variety of colors but darkish, and Deck 9 had nothing but Grays, Dark Grays, Black, & little hints of Whites. I hope we have something more like this! I hope I described, in way you guys can understand. You guys have got to show more of the maps!

    I would love to see how you are going to handle the HUD, with all the Hardware Attachments (as its called) you get thought the game; like the flashlight, the camera on the back, the shield, the radiation suit, ect. So I hope we have to click a button (like the TAB), to open the HUD to click on the different Hardware Attachments, like how it was SS1; and switching weapons, listen to recordings, collected codes and necessary things to open doors, use Dermal Patches, and look at objectives, which brings that up. I hope we get objectives in the HUD, like how it is in SS2, tells you what to do and tells you if you have finished it. But you still have to figure out, where to find it. I like how the SS2 objectives are vague, it still makes you think, which is good; but helps you, and figure out what to do next. To me that's one of the few negatives about SS1, is that there is no objectives in the HUD, you have to figure out everything from the voice recordings. I do like in the November Update, seeing the HUD so far, like you have the stamina and health bar; ify on having enemy health bar, hope to have a choice to turn it one or off.

    There is another thing that was major to System Shock 1, what was it..........................oh yeah. WHERE IS CYBER-HACKING???? I haven't seen anybody bring that up yet. Are you guys going to show that sometime soon? Cause you guys HAVE to have it in this game. That was one of the major selling points to the original game.

    Again looks great! I am fucking psyched for it! You guys take your time with it! But please do consider the different colors, explore them. Please do more of these update videos! Maybe the Medical Deck Demo soon????
     

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