It does make sense in Dishonored though. It plays into the rat plague that brings havoc to the city. More bodies means more rats, which results in more plague victims. I fund that it added to the overall experience, that my actions had consequences. Not just key actions sprinkled out through the run time.
This way the plague wasn’t just another plot device, but world building you could affect and change for the better or worse. I wish more games with RPG elements would adopt this.
the world reflects your actions back at you. it’s not a drastically different game or anything, except perhaps in tone, but chaos level in dishonored has an effect beyond simply reprimanding the player.
it changes the number and types of enemies, npc dialogue and character reactions (particularly emily, sokolov, the loyalists, daud and burrows), and certain map layouts and aesthetics; the flooded district and kingsparrow island in particular are significantly altered by the chaos level.
i think that’s neat.
what you’re describing there is the plot, which is definitely basic. i don’t think that is necessarily a bad thing though? like, you’re also describing the plot to the count of monte cristo there, and that’s a stone cold, bonafide classic of literature. bear in mind that “writing” isn’t just plot though.
what i’m talking about - “what would you do with great power?” - is the theme. a theme is a central topic or subject within a narrative; what the work is about and what the work says about it.
dishonored’s plot, characters, gameplay, aesthetic, and even the pre-release marketing are all concerned with that question in some way. indeed, almost every single character in the game is connected to or affected by that theme: the outsider, emily, delilah, corvo, daud, billie, lady boyle, burrows and his cronies, the loyalists, etc. there is even a game-spanning system - the chaos level - that alters the game based on the player’s answer to the same question.
as it underpins and suffuses the entire game, top to bottom, i think it is a mistake to dismiss it as an “afterthought”. it is demonstrably baked in to the whole deal.
can you elaborate on this a little? you said earlier that:
…which implies that you want to be able to kill everyone and still get a ‘good’ ending. all the videos you post are about the ending too, which seems to further support that reading.
have i misunderstood this…?
no worries. you said:
i’m basically saying that limiting choices to story ones (like at the end of mass effect, the end of death of the outsider or a choice picked from a dialogue tree etc.) is an incredibly myopic way of looking at how games can work. gameplay choices seem like a far more interesting avenue to explore imo and something only video games can do.
i think this is a really reductive way of looking at it, and if i’m honest, a lot of how you’re framing everything is reductive. one can be reductive with anything and make it seem pants. it’s not a useful rhetorical device and doesn’t tend to provide much insight.
for example, i could say “hitman is a game where you kill people” but that doesn’t really cover it, does it? it certainly makes it easier to criticise (“all you do is kill people… how dull!”) but it scrubs away the nuance and uniqueness.
with that said, dishonored offers the same kind of power fantasy every other game offers… then subverts it by making how the player uses their power affect the world positively or negatively. that is a really interesting and pretty unique approach imo (i’m wracking my brain for other examples… infamous, maybe?). it’s saying: “hey player, lotta people around here are abusing power. by the way, here are all these tempting supernatural powers that basically make you a god-like ninja witch… whatcha gonna do with ‘em?”
i think that’s ace!
the amount of kills you get in dishonored 2 also affects the ending/chaos level. the difference is that dishonored 2 adds npcs with different weightings based on their good/evil alignment, which you can decipher via the heart. the chaos system in 2 has a few more variables but is largely an iteration on dishonoured’s existing system.
additionally, what you’re alluding to above is present in the first game too. the decisions you make in dishonored’s side-quests and how you deal with targets impacts the chaos rating too.
one example off the top of my head: poisoning the distillery for granny rags bumps the chaos rating up dramatically. i think there are something in the region of 10-15 of these sorts of chaos-affecting side-quests throughout the game. again, this goes back to my criticism of how opaque the system is. there’s no real way to tell that these have an affect on chaos till after the fact.
god, you’re making me want to play dishonored again…
its depth is irrelevant. you can still be reductive about something shallow. like, if i said “pac-man is about eating”, it is a broadly accurate statement but tells us next to nothing about the game.
i’m not saying it is, i’m saying reductivism doesn’t take into account details which might reframe or undermine the point it’s being used to make. it’s a kind of strawmanning.
for example, “killing = evil” seems broadly accurate…
…until we look at the chaos system in detail. forgetting the side quests for a sec, the primary way to get a low chaos ending is for players to kill less than 20% of the human population per level.
this means players can kill every sixth person they meet throughout the entire game, and every single animal they come across, and still get a low chaos ending.
that doesn’t really fit the “killing = evil” equation because you can kill and not be considered ‘evil’ (i think ‘evil’ is a bit too simplistic too, but we can save that for some other time).
daud is baller, i prefer him to corvo… but he’s not what i would consider morally complex. pretty hackneyed redemption arc when you get down to it. great dlc though.
delilah comes into her own in dishonored 2, i think. she’s interesting as a kind of dark reflection of emily and as the product of the unfair system emily represents. i like her, but yeah, not exactly complex.
i don’t think the game is even trying to draw particularly deep or nuanced character portrayals, so i’m not sure why we would criticise it for that. i think it’s mostly trying to expound on the theme i mentioned.
but it would not get across any of the important details that differentiate the series from others: the social stealth, the heath robinson machine murder puzzles, etc.
it’s just not a useful way to discuss anything.
sorry, what point…? that it isn’t witcher?
(i’ve bounced off of the witcher series multiple times. i tried to give it a fair shake but found it really boring)
While on the topic of Dishonored, I have now tried and failed to get into in for the 4th time. I think by this point I’m just going to give up, no shame in that. It’s not for me, just gonna have to watch it instead
(I have made it through 4 missions, but that’s like over the span of 3 years)
I’m just not good at it and its steath-parkour (the 1st person and FOV are claustrophobic)
Most of the game just seems like hostile territory, always either hiding on rooftops or running from NPCs
The game is slow, which is good, but any attempt to pull off a few fast moves is out of my skill level
Combat is harsh too. Feels terrible to flee, but feels worse to murder everyone involved, really wish there were better non-lethal options
I will be playing through Uncharted: The Lost Legacy again, since I’m in the mood for that now. Should be fun, gonna collect all the treasures and collectibles this time round.
Also, uhm, maybe start to wrap up your dishonored discussion or bring it to PM’s, y’all are going back and forth on some big paragraphs!
That game is amazing, I love it to bits. I really want to get the platinum, and I’ve done everything except collectibles. It’s always such a bloody drag. I’d rather do another melee only Crushing playthrough than follow a guide for treasures or look for them myself. Even the Queen’s Ruby doesn’t make it enjoyable for me.
I’ll definitely be following a guide for Treasures like I’ve done with the other games so far, but when I first played LL i just collected all the Rubies myself! I found it fun and scratched that collector’s itch in my head.
Good luck on your platinums tho. I usually do it with games that I loove and don’t have too daunting challenges.
But Uncharted I don’t think I’ll ever platinum them. Crushing is too scary for me and the combat-specific challenges are daunting “kill X,Y,Z, in that order, in 20secs”
And that’s a wrap on Uncharted: The Lost Legacy. Got all the treasures, optional conversations, photos, everything.
Which means I’ve completed (as much as I can) every Uncharted game now! Woohoo!
It was nice to replay all the titles in the past 1.5 year or so. You really get to know how in the hell Uncharted 1 was so janky, and how magically they made the cover system, stealth, shooting mechanics, and pacing work better in Uncharted 2.
Then it just goes up from there, IMO.
Lost Legacy is a nice cap-off to the series (for now) and the return of Chloe Frazer as a new playable protagonist is great. Her talkative banter with Nadine Ross is enjoyable, and this game features some of the coolest vistas and sequences in the series!
The grandiose carvings in the side of a mountain, the prologue in the city, and wow I still can’t believe they gave us both the U4 Convoy sequence + the U2 Train sequence in one go. Hell yeah!
They pack a lot into a small 7-10 hour title. Never feels too stale, with the combat arenas, the open-world Chapter 4, the menacing villain. Its cool and fun.
In an effort to finish AC3 and its DLCs before they get axed by Ubicun*s next month, I jumped back into the game today after a 3-week pause. And found out that apparently the servers have already been pretty much disconnected, cause the DLCs are not accessible (I get a “logging to servers” loading screen for a few minutes and then a “servers currently unavailable” message). Apparently Blacklist has the same issue, but I don´t have that one installed to check.
A whole month before it was meant to happen. Customer care at its finest.
Kinda jumping in between games I haven´t finished yet (be it in terms of main story or side content). One of the more pleasant ones being Yakuza Kiwami. I wanna head on to Kiwami 2, but I still have quite a bit of side content to finish both here and in Yakuza 0, so…
After finishing Uncharted The Lost Legacy, I was still feeling the need for some Naughty Dog Linear Gameplay. So, I re-installed The Last of Us Part 2, started the campaign anew, and decided “why not try out a Grounded, Permadeath-Per-Act Playthrough? It’ll be tough, but I know TLOU!”
No, I in fact did not know TLOU. Especially on Grounded which I never attempted in TLOU1, and especially Part 2, in that I hadn’t played it for a long 1.5 years now.
I tried 2 attempts on Grounded, then 2 on Survivor (one diff. lower) Permadeath is unforgiving and heart-crushing.
I died twice on the very first combat encounter of the game, another later, and a 4th on the last encounter of Act 1 of the game.
I think the two key reasons behind this are A: I’m not used to the dodge mechanic. And B: The attack patterns of Infected are longer, more complex, extremely fast, and extremely lethal.
warning: gore upon death
I think I’ve realised, I just need to stick to the Encounter Selection option on the main menu, to get my fill of ND’s gameplay in small bits, without needing to torture myself with a difficulty+challenge I severely underestimated.
It definitely is, especially since the start of “Act 1” is Ellie waking up at Jackson. So I had to slowly walk through the whole scripted story set-up every single time I died here before finally getting to the point where it’s a life-or-death fight.