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Everything posted by SmashManiac

  1. I assume they want to sell the final game for $10, so if they can't simply give free copies of the game, they would credit you back with DLC. Of course, that means if you don't care about the paid DLC in the first place, you would get totally screwed since you would pay the game triple of what they're promising for backers.
  2. Wow, these guys don't know how to sell themselves. I'm not sure what's stranger: showing an Atari Lynx at the beginning of the pitch video, no guarantee of getting the full game in the rewards, or the fact that the game appears to be complete already. Also, in-game credits? I don't like this...
  3. As long as they're not distracting, I don't really care personally. I'm playing video games for interactivity, and idle animations goes against that principle.
  4. Going from programmer to designer is HARD, but not as hard as getting into the games industry in the first place. It took me eight years to do, but I'm finally a designer, and it was definitely worth it. The necessary skills in organization and logic required to be a good programmer are also a huge boon to working as a designer, not to mention being able to quickly create small functional prototypes to push my own ideas. The other thing I would highly recomend is do not judge the industry by working for one or two companies. Every company has it's own culture, it's own problems, and the difficulty or ease of changing roles will also vary. If you can't get to designer in your current company, move somewhere else as a programmer, or a technical designer, or a 'scripter'... Congratulations! Now I'm jealous though. :lol: Personally I had zero trouble getting in the game industry. I just started as a QA tester for a shitty subcontracting company and three months later BOOM I found myself working for an awesome big company instead, just like that. I don't want to generalize all companies, but I've seen very good and very bad in my career so far, but even the very good were not open to the idea of a smooth job transition. And one thing's for sure: I won't do a job that completely drains my energy for 8 years. It would probably be better at a different game company (no opportunities in my area so far), but the fact remains that programming is an extremely tiresome activity for me and I could not have predicted it in advance. That's why I'm seriously considering to take a step back, do something fun and completely unrelated for a few years, and then maybe go back as indie when I'll have the opportunity. All I know is that I need some tangible portfolio to get a job closer to design, but pretty much all I have are design documents and no time to realize them in my free time. The only one I did realize turned out to be so hard it wasn't even worth going beyond the prototype stage. In any case I'm quitting my current job ASAP because of how poorly managed my current company is in my opinion, but it's pretty much impossible to determine what's for the best afterwards. To be honest, I've never been so pessimistic about my career path of becoming a game designer. I'm writing this and I should be sleeping instead, but I just can't make up my mind about what to do next in my professional career... really tough times for me.
  5. This should be mandatory reading for any programmer interested in joining the video game industry. I was lucky enough to discover this through various interviews with game companies I had after I graduated college. I eventually made the difficult decision to take a job doing graphics/data visualization in the oil industry instead. I haven't regretted it since. Wow thanks! I'm glad you like my post so much! But if you want others to read it, you'll have to copy it outside of these private forums.
  6. Pretty cool episode, but as a backer I was a bit disappointed considering I've already seen about 80% of the content on various websites beforehand. Still, it's a nice recap...
  7. Huh I didn't know about ResidualVM, thanks for the tip!
  8. I'm not sure I understand your point. All Monkey Island games are divided into chapters which are occurring in separate areas. The only difference in Tales of Monkey Island is that the chapters are sold separately. Wouldn't you feel the same way in MI1 if you were asked to switch to the next episode immediately after leaving Melee Island?
  9. Personally, my rule of thumb is, if I can't make ANY progress in a game during 2 weeks, then I'll probably never figure it out anyway and I allow myself to look at a walkthrough. The only other times when I cheat is to either force unlocking stuff that improves gameplay or for practicing an action game. That's it. You can't say it's impossible because I beat this game without any walkthrough! :cheese: Besides, what do you mean by "ridiculous"? Care to give an example?
  10. I've worked for a few big video game companies in the last few years as QA tester and programmer, and while those jobs aren't all that bad, they're not that great either. So far I had no creative input on the games I developed, even when I insisted. There's just too much demand for game designers and barely any opportunities to make the jump. Becoming a successful game designer is my dream since pretty much ever, but it just seems fate is against me, always denying me of a chance to prove my worth. Also, things aren't looking good in the industry because of all the bad decisions they've taken recently. Video games is an art form that thrives on innovation, but partially because of the recent economic crash, no publisher wants to actually take a risk and instead prefer to release the same games over and over and include in them hardcore DRM and ridiculously expensive DLC, but by doing so it's killing the market instead. On the other end we have the rise of the mobile and social network platforms, but now everybody and their cousins are developing on these platforms and are oversaturating the market, and since there's no quality control, 99.99% of the games on those platforms are either shovelware or shallow games (including Angry Birds, Draw Something and Infinity Blade). On the long term, people will lose interest in these kind of games and the whole market will crash. It's not speculation, this has happened several times in the past already. So under these conditions, what does someone like me supposed to do? Most big companies don't have an open mind, I'm too exhausted during my free time, and I can't quit my day job and go indie without the funds to do so, and even if I had the funds my game would most likely be lost in an ocean of crap. I already even tried teaming up with a little group of developers that wanted to try going indie, but in the end they weren't as serious as they claimed and the lack of funds demotivated all of the others team members. Therefore, all I can do right now is endure my current situation... maybe. I thought for a long time becoming a programmer would allow me to eventually become a designer, but as time passes it seems that's far from enough after all. In fact, it's sad how many game designers do not even know the basic concepts of programming. So right now I'm seriously considering changing jobs for something more interesting in the short term outside the video game industry and create my own opportunity much later in my career. Sigh...
  11. Most developers make the mistake of creating "intellectual" games by adding a good/evil bar of some sort or having plenty of characters or in-game books saying the same moral over and over and over. Lame. The most intellectual game I've played so far was Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors. The game is full of interesting trivia, smart puzzles and controversial themes. Just that story of the White Santa and the Black Santa really makes you think about reward and punishiment for a long time...
  12. I don't like dying in adventure games except if it's part of some clever puzzle like the one in Monkey Island 3, where it was clearly foreshadowed. Every time I saw that "game over" narration textbox in Sierra games I would rage hard because it always takes you out of the experience, plus it was always presented as a joke which feels like an complete insult to me. It's like the game is mocking me for doing something I would normally do in real life without any bad consequences. The Legend of Kyrandia Book 3: Malcolm's Revenge has deaths and was very forgiving for them: your conscience would warn you if you were going to do an action that would kill you, and even if you insisted and died, you could restart right before your fatal action. While some of them resulted in genuinely funny scenes that were worth experiencing, they would still take me out of the experience so I didn't like them in general either, especially the gruesome ones. Most of them could have easily been slightly modified to not kill you and be even more hilarious that way.
  13. That was in Monkey Island 2, not 1. Personally I liked that puzzle, but I can understand how it can be frustrating if you don't get it.
  14. Most expensive is without a doubt my $400 investment on various dance pads and adapters. In the end I invested in a high quality Cobalt Flux metal pad and it was well worth it. Unfortunately I think they're out of business now, that's a shame. Second most expensive was for Street Fighter III 3rd Strike Online Edition. Game + DLC + HitBox controller was about $225. That controller was well worth it though, I just hate joysticks on arcade pads.
  15. Actually, that's a good point; nostalgia is just a feeling of fondness while looking back upon something. Make anything good or memorable enough, and in the future, you'll be nostalgic for it. Exactly, we don't need this game to remind us how cool the old ones were; half of us are still playing them I'm in this category too. If I just wanted to fill up my dose of nostalgia, I'd just go and play a retro game. On this note, I've played The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword recently, and as much as I enjoy the Zelda series in general, I really can't believe this game could have gotten such highly good reviews if it wasn't for the nostalgia factor. The game is really badly designed considering the constant tedious tutorials, the linear experience, the repetitive strategies against enemies, the limited stamina, the cartoony graphics, the emptiness of sky exploration, the recycled content from one dungeon to another, the abysmal minigames, and the forced backtracking. That's just one example, but for me, it's obvious that nostalgia is much more powerful for many people than good design and originality unfortunately.
  16. Another great series of adventure games, but again I'm fairly sure those games are pretty well known... But that's funny, I find Kyrandia 3 to be the best of the bunch and Kyrandia 1 very annoying and frustrating. K3 is just too funny, and I have to disagree with you when you say that the puzzles aren't logical. I agree that the maze part was really annoying, but the one in K1 was even worse considering it was pure trial and error and you died at every wrong turn. Also Brandon in K1 is just the worst protagonist I've ever encountered in any game; he's just too dumb and whiny. Which puzzle of K2 are you referring about by the way? I've played all 3 games in reverse order and never had any major problem solving any of the puzzles.
  17. Personally I'm not a fan of the game either. Besides, I wouldn't call it an adventure game in the first place, it just plays like one. It's like saying Portal is a FPS, Braid a platformer or Minecraft a RPG. For me, Machinarium is a little simple puzzle game with a depressing atmosphere, just going from room to room to solve the next puzzle. At least, that's how I felt after playing the demo, and after reading the various posts here I'm even more convinced of my opinion. I will definitively not buy it.
  18. +1 vote for Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Here's my pick: a gamebook called Heart of Ice by Dave Morris. The PDF version is free too, so give it a try!
  19. Personally, I like it when games allow you to work on several puzzles simultaneously to prevent such frustration, as long as it doesn't make the story confusing.
  20. I mostly agree with you, but I think one of the problems not-so-well-known developers stumble on Kickstarter is that they not do a decent presentation of what they want to achieve. If you're seeking $1M from a publisher, you're going to sit with them for a while and do the best you can to prove that it's a profitable idea. On Kickstarter, I believe a similar presentation is in order, but to show to backers how fun and awesome this idea is. Most entries however look like "hey I want to do this, gimme your monies". Another major problem of Kickstarter right now is that there's no easy way to browse all the different projects. Hopefully they'll be able to fix this soon.
  21. The Kyrandia series was pretty much spot-on for controls: Left-click: Execute context-sensitive action, select/combine/manage items from inventory, skip current dialog line ESC: Skip cutscene Who needs stupid verbs anyway?
  22. 999 is indeed an amazing game, but I was under the impression that it was one of Aksys's biggest successes. They even announced the sequel for 3DS and Vita:
  23. The reason I didn't create an "overlooked" thread myself was because of that thread. I think it would be much better if we could post exclusively in it to avoid splitting up the suggestions. I already made a few myself, including Shadow of Destiny before it was mentioned here.
  24. The puzzles suck... yes, but if you think this is "poor storytelling" then I must tell you there are only a handful of adventures over the past 13 years that do significantly better. I was just picking up the popular answers from this thread so far. You are of course free to disagree, and I encourage you to explain your point of view further. In fact, I'm under the impression that fans of The Longest Journey liked the game because of the storytelling. It's just not a style that suits everybody. I'm actually thinking of creating a separate thread soon to discuss what made these same games so good to people who actually liked them and then compare the answers with those of this thread...