PDA

View Full Version : *SPOILERS* Storyline inconsistent badly


Eternity
04-19-2002, 07:10 PM
WARNING: Some parts of the story will be mentioned.

Did anyone else feel the cut-scenes and the storyline was rushed? For instance:

*Desann let Kyle free so he could lead him to to the Valley of the Jedi. He kept Jan to torture her about the same thing. Why not capture both and torture both of them until they cracked? He could of threatened Kyle with Jan being sliced or tortured if he didn't tell...this was just a lame plot twist.

*When Kyle rescues Jan, she doesn't even show surprise about him now all of a sudden being a Jedi. Hello? Anybody in there, developers? Plus, the reactions in that scene were just terrible.

*The scene where Luke fights Desann. Blah. Desann's light saber throw triggers an extremely fake looking blockade. What the hell?

As far as the cut-scenes go, all the characters have teeth that keep me up at night in terror. The faces look pasted on.

I loved the game, but did anyone else feel it was a little rushed in this department? Plus, couldn't they have included some more skins and actual outdoor levels, such as towns? The short developer time kind of shows....

Anyone else agree?

uteboy
04-19-2002, 07:57 PM
Originally posted by Eternity
WARNING: Some parts of the story will be mentioned.

Did anyone else feel the cut-scenes and the storyline was rushed? For instance:

*Desann let Kyle free so he could lead him to to the Valley of the Jedi. He kept Jan to torture her about the same thing. Why not capture both and torture both of them until they cracked? He could of threatened Kyle with Jan being sliced or tortured if he didn't tell...this was just a lame plot twist.


If they Desann had captured both of them and tortured them they would probably have both resisted all his efforts to reveal the valleys location. Likewise if he had threatened to kill Jan if Kyle didn't tell him, Kyle probably would have gestured to Desann that he's always number one with him (think about it)

It was only by making Kyle think that Jan was already dead that he was able to set Kyle up to return to the valley to get his Jedi power back so Desann could follow him.

Eternity
04-19-2002, 08:00 PM
If they Desann had captured both of them and tortured them they would probably have both resisted all his efforts to reveal the valleys location. Likewise if he had threatened to kill Jan if Kyle didn't tell him, Kyle probably would have gestured to Desann that he's always number one with him (think about it)

Er, sorry. That went right over my head. Always number one?

Kataarn
04-19-2002, 08:13 PM
Originally posted by Eternity

Did anyone else feel the cut-scenes and the storyline was rushed? For instance:

*Desann let Kyle free so he could lead him to to the Valley of the Jedi. He kept Jan to torture her about the same thing. Why not capture both and torture both of them until they cracked? He could of threatened Kyle with Jan being sliced or tortured if he didn't tell...this was just a lame plot twist.



There was a reason Desann did that. He knew that Kyle would go to the valley if he believed that Desann had had her killed. Simply, this was MUCH easier that taking the risk that you wouldn't find it if you tortured them both (which is a realistic risk).



*When Kyle rescues Jan, she doesn't even show surprise about him now all of a sudden being a Jedi. Hello? Anybody in there, developers? Plus, the reactions in that scene were just terrible.



Desann or Galak probably told her what was going on, evil people have a habit of doing that. From that info, she could draw her own conclusions pretty easily.



*The scene where Luke fights Desann. Blah. Desann's light saber throw triggers an extremely fake looking blockade. What the hell?



It was designed to slow him down, not kill him. They probably would've made it a teeny bit more realistic if the blockade actually did anything.



As far as the cut-scenes go, all the characters have teeth that keep me up at night in terror. The faces look pasted on.



Yes, the teeth are screwed, this was pointed out in one of the reviews...I never liked them much either.



I loved the game, but did anyone else feel it was a little rushed in this department? Plus, couldn't they have included some more skins and actual outdoor levels, such as towns? The short developer time kind of shows....



You have to remember, this is an FPS, besides, they had no reason to include towns. What on earth would they do that for? I agree they could've made a few more maps, and perhaps a couple outdoor levels...maybe.

:)

SrCumference
04-19-2002, 08:50 PM
Oh yes, ~1-3 years is no development time at all. JKII is definetely superior to just about every other FPS game for the computer, in just about every respect, don't forget that.

OOO
04-19-2002, 08:58 PM
I'll have to disagree, the cut scenes where fine. They where nothing spectacular, but they got the job done and moved the story. As for the teeth, thats just a petty little thing, even if it did make everyone look like a mongloid.

As for the claim "JKII is definetely superior to just about every other FPS game for the computer" I really think you need to add an IMHO to that ;)

OOO

aletoledo
04-19-2002, 09:08 PM
IMO desaan trying to torture the info out of them is too risky, the plan he did do had a lot more chance of success.

kyle was a jedi from JK1 and jan was there also, so shes used to him being a jedi. a jedi is typically always a jedi and if you listen to a few of the jokes she makes to kyle in this regards, shes basically said "I knew you were a jedi since day one, its only you that never accepted it".

the saber throw...I guess I missed since I played single player through prior to playing multiplayer and I think I might have used throw once the entire time....so I'm not a great judge on how it should look. frankly I think its kinda corny for a jedi to be tossing around his saber every 5 seconds.

Zek
04-19-2002, 09:27 PM
Originally posted by Eternity
*Desann let Kyle free so he could lead him to to the Valley of the Jedi. He kept Jan to torture her about the same thing. Why not capture both and torture both of them until they cracked? He could of threatened Kyle with Jan being sliced or tortured if he didn't tell...this was just a lame plot twist.

His main method of getting to the Valley of the Jedi was following Kyle. They only kept Jan for backup in case that didn't work; Tavion mentioned that they wouldn't risk killing the only other person who knew the whereabouts of the valley.


*When Kyle rescues Jan, she doesn't even show surprise about him now all of a sudden being a Jedi. Hello? Anybody in there, developers? Plus, the reactions in that scene were just terrible.

Jan's just a cold-hearted b**tch.

*The scene where Luke fights Desann. Blah. Desann's light saber throw triggers an extremely fake looking blockade. What the hell?

Who cares?

As far as the cut-scenes go, all the characters have teeth that keep me up at night in terror. The faces look pasted on.

Not to mention the fact that Luke looks as if he hasn't slept in months...

Frizbee
04-19-2002, 10:53 PM
He probably hasn't slept in months, after all, would YOU be able to sleep if you found out that Princess Leia was your sister, Darth Vader was your father, and that Han Solo was going to be your Brother-in-Law?

I don't think they have therapists that could handle that sort of situation in the Star Wars universe. :D

happydan
04-19-2002, 11:07 PM
development time for the game was about 9 months, i believe.

Eternity
04-20-2002, 12:19 AM
Sorry, I think you guys are just explaining away things..:p On with the debate! :)

His main method of getting to the Valley of the Jedi was following Kyle. They only kept Jan for backup in case that didn't work; Tavion mentioned that they wouldn't risk killing the only other person who knew the whereabouts of the valley.

I know. That was lame, for reasons already stated.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The scene where Luke fights Desann. Blah. Desann's light saber throw triggers an extremely fake looking blockade. What the hell?


Response: Who cares?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Um, I do?

IMO desaan trying to torture the info out of them is too risky, the plan he did do had a lot more chance of success.

kyle was a jedi from JK1 and jan was there also, so shes used to him being a jedi. a jedi is typically always a jedi and if you listen to a few of the jokes she makes to kyle in this regards, shes basically said "I knew you were a jedi since day one, its only you that never accepted it".

Now, come on. Which plan had the riskier chances? Realistically, he's not going to send Kyle loose in the galaxy when he could have had him captured. He wouldn't have let him go to the Valley and get his force powers and stay alive, either.

Before you tell me, I know this is just a game and he needed to get his powers somehow. But it could have been done WAY better.

And pure and simple, there was no justification for Jan not showing ANY reaction about Kyle being a jedi, except as someone mentioned, she's a cold-hearted *****. ;)

I'll have to disagree, the cut scenes where fine. They where nothing spectacular, but they got the job done and moved the story. As for the teeth, thats just a petty little thing, even if it did make everyone look like a mongloid.

They could have been done a hell of a lot better. They looked like puppet dolls, they moved like puppet dolls, and they portrayed puppet dolls.

Oh yes, ~1-3 years is no development time at all. JKII is definetely superior to just about every other FPS game for the computer, in just about every respect, don't forget that.

WTF? 3 years? And, er, are you forgetting Half-Life, No-one lives forever, Max Payne, etc. etc. Combat, yes? General FPS, no.

It was designed to slow him down, not kill him. They probably would've made it a teeny bit more realistic if the blockade actually did anything.

It looked cheesy. Look at a game like Half-Life's blockades blockades, to show it's not about technology.

You have to remember, this is an FPS, besides, they had no reason to include towns. What on earth would they do that for? I agree they could've made a few more maps, and perhaps a couple outdoor levels...maybe.


To me, even the outdoor levels looked indoor. (Example, Cloud City. What kind of city was that? I felt ripped off.) They tried to attempt an outdoor level with the swamp, and failed terribly when it came to a realistic looking portrayal of an outdoor setting.

Again, I love this game, I have a very high opinion of it, it's just that these things bother me because it seems to me not exceptional effort was put into the game, which most top notch triple-A titles have.

Sorry for any spelling or grammical errors, it's 12:00 at night.

Pol Favre
04-20-2002, 12:28 AM
the teeth suck! not only are they THIN, but they're BROWN. for the skin im working on, im totally whitening the teeth!

UsEr-X-
04-20-2002, 12:30 AM
I don't trust people with pee-wee herman icons by their names...

UsEr-X-:fett:

Eternity
04-20-2002, 12:32 AM
I was supposed to change it 2 days ago when somebody told me that.

I'll change it with something Pink Floydish or something tommorrow, really.

uteboy
04-20-2002, 12:33 AM
Originally posted by Eternity


Er, sorry. That went right over my head. Always number one?

Find someone you don't like - hold up your middle finger and say :

"you are always number one with me"

enDless_Deliriu
04-20-2002, 12:46 AM
Originally posted by uteboy


Find someone you don't like - hold up your middle finger and say :

"you are always number one with me"


Oh, and here I thought you were referring to the fact that it says in the book that it's rumored that Jan is the only person who Kyle puts above himself in priority. :)

GonkH8er
04-20-2002, 02:17 AM
Originally posted by Pol Favre
the teeth suck! not only are they THIN, but they're BROWN. for the skin im working on, im totally whitening the teeth!

When a jedi you are, have as much time to brush your teeth you will not..

patchx
04-20-2002, 02:25 AM
if bespin and nar shadda had civilians it woulda made them a whole lot better

did anyone seriously feel that they were in a "cloud city" or booming metropolis in either of those levels?
or just playing through a generic level of an fps?

in fact with exception of the swamp i kept forgetting on each level whether i was on a space station , future city or starship as there were no serious differences (especially the cairn base and doomgiver levels).

the game was really, really fun but it lacked credible atmosphere because IMHO the level design when compared with other premium fps's was pretty woefull.

also i've said this before and maybe its fanboy pedantry but they should have removed kyles darkside powers from the game after he found out Jan was alive.

-patch

Rocketman
04-20-2002, 04:34 AM
Originally posted by Eternity
WARNING: Some parts of the story will be mentioned.



As far as the cut-scenes go, all the characters have teeth that keep me up at night in terror. The faces look pasted on.



LMFAO! :D

ChrisTheS
04-20-2002, 06:27 AM
I have never been much of a fan of in-engine cutscenes; I think the FMV cutscenes in JK rocked, and I fail to see why most reviewers downgrade games for using FMV or SMK. Now, the cutscenes in JO are a step up from the usual fare (and light-years away from the ones in MOTS, which just looked oooogley in comparison to the rest of the game), but the animations at least could have done with some more work (specifically that handshake at the end... and the kissing animation was just bad. Way to put a damper on the scene that Dark Forces fans have been waiting to see for years...)

---

Well, I don't know about anyone else, but the civilians in JK and MOTS really annoyed me, mostly because they were really, REALLY stupid and actually got into the line of fire for no good reason (thus making it harder to stay Light Side). Given that it's already hard enough to avoid damaging your allies in the Academy levels, having bystanders would just be a further annoyance.

Anyway, I doubt there is such a thing as an innocent bystander on Nar Shaddaa... and on Bespin, if you saw a lot of guys in sinister hoods carrying lightsabers, not to mention stormtroopers and weirdos lobbing thermal detonators around at random, wouldn't you prefer to keep off the streets? (now, if it were Coruscant, that would be a different matter...)

---

There is no such thing as a generic FPS level. Even FPS games with no plot have a unique feel (Unreal, for example; although in gameplay it's no different from Quake 2, the ambiance of the game is MUCH different). JO's levels retain the general feel of the previous Dark Forces games, so I'm not complaining.

Kataarn
04-20-2002, 06:57 AM
Okay, back to the reasons I already stated before, which you convienently skipped for no good reason.

Eternity, didn't you hear? Dark Jedi don't BELIEVE in risks. Yeesh. They only believe it getting what they want, everything else is just extra. Hence, he didn't really care what Kyle did, as long as Kyle lead him to the Valley...and as far as Desann cared, it would be a lot more FUN to kill Kyle if he could use the force.

Like I said before about Jan, Galak probably told her what happened, and she drew her own conclusions, obviously. Do you actually think that the characters would be COMPLETELY stupid (no, by your previous posts you don't, but apparently you seem to think Jan would be stupid....hmmmm, hypocrite).


[QUOTE]
They could have been done a hell of a lot better. They looked like puppet dolls, they moved like puppet dolls, and they portrayed puppet dolls.


Agreed, I liked the FMV.



It looked cheesy. Look at a game like Half-Life's blockades blockades, to show it's not about technology.


Yes, it did look cheesy, and to add to it, it's the only time sabers actually cut through walkways. But, like I said before, they probably would've done a better job if it was supposed to do anything.

Personally, I loved the swamp....could've used some more wildlife though.

I agree that there should've been pedestrians in Shadda, and Bespin, but in all likelyhood, one of your goals would be "Avoid getting any innocents killed"...which would produce a LOT of headaches, and quickloading.

Maybe that's why they didn't include them.

patchx
04-20-2002, 07:08 AM
hmmm i seriously think civilians would have created a much more immersive level.

when i say generic fps i mean there is no outstanding feature, be it architecturally or scriptwise.

architecturally the levels were completely non credible as far as practicality goes, even for the starwars universe.

i just did not feel like i was in any sort of military installation, just a level designed for me to walk through and shoot poorly positioned stormtroopers with my ridiculously innacurate stormtrooper rifle which fires blaster bolts that move slower then the bleedin' stormtroopers i'm shooting at.

and the developer's were going on about the ai and how when you shoot a stormie leader or officer the others would scarper but i've developed the tactic of shooting the officers last so as to stop the stormies from running around like headless turkeys as much.

to make it a bit easier to shoot them with my snail paced stormtrooper blaster bolts

and i've seen heaps of user made levels with better orchestrated scripts then in JK2

on artus topside when the ships come in after you blow the ion cannons they seem to rise up behind a section of rock...wtf is that? arent they sposed to be held up in orbit until kyle clears the ground to air defences?

its a small qualm i know, but there are lots of little things like that in it that detract from the experience of a game that as far as its gameplay fun factor goes , is unequeled.

if they just spent a bit more time on the cutscenes, level design, and art (more enemy skins, more monsters) this game would habe been an immortal classic.

-patch

Forceflow
04-20-2002, 07:08 AM
I really do think JK lacked in terms of story and athmosphere. Again, I cannot stress enough how much I enjoyed the game, but some parts of it could've been cleary made much better.
I would have enjoyed some more civilians. (Maybe at least some who would run away screaming once you or some stormies appear.)

I liked the appearance of the second reborn in the Freezing chamber, that had a great athmosphere, but that was one of the few really climatic scenes.

Besides, the scripting in the cut-scenes has some problems with unforseen events. (Like me placing 5 automatic guns in the room where Galak shows up, man, that cut-scene was really messed up) I was kinda dissapointed by that. Not to meantion the fact that you cannot ABORT the scenes! (Seeing them once is okay, twice, yes, but anything mosre than that just plainly sucks)

ChampionMrSocks
04-20-2002, 10:37 AM
You can tap the Ctrl button to speed through the cutscenes, by the way.

RoyalGuard
04-20-2002, 10:50 AM
You can tap the Ctrl button to speed through the cutscenes, by the way.

or the E key

Well, I don't know about anyone else, but the civilians in JK and MOTS really annoyed me, mostly because they were really, REALLY stupid and actually got into the line of fire for no good reason (thus making it harder to stay Light Side).

Since when has the light side been the easy path?

I really enjoyed scenes with civillians in in JK and missed them in JKO. Cloud city could have been a lot better, and Nar Shadda as well (no moans about the snipers now, it shows you the only safe way of taking out a jedi and signaled to me that Reelo was a worthy opponent). Used quickload a lot though I admit.

Yes the cutscenes were awful, use FMV! Mark Hamill did wing commander, how could he turn down the opportunity to reprise the best role of his career?

Eternity
04-20-2002, 11:26 AM
Eternity, didn't you hear? Dark Jedi don't BELIEVE in risks. Yeesh. They only believe it getting what they want, everything else is just extra. Hence, he didn't really care what Kyle did, as long as Kyle lead him to the Valley...and as far as Desann cared, it would be a lot more FUN to kill Kyle if he could use the force.

Like I said before about Jan, Galak probably told her what happened, and she drew her own conclusions, obviously. Do you actually think that the characters would be COMPLETELY stupid (no, by your previous posts you don't, but apparently you seem to think Jan would be stupid....hmmmm, hypocrite).

He didn't care what Kyle did? They don't believe in taking risks? I'm a hypocrite?

I smell...contradiction!

1) Jedi don't believe in taking risks, but Desann let Kyle go free, betting on him going to the Valley, then let him escape from the Valley with newfound force powers, letting him wreck havoc on everything, just because it would be fun?

2) Jan already knew that Kyle was a Jedi so she didn't mention it to him, let alone welcome him? Doesn't that seem even a little lame to you? ;) I mean, come on.

3) I'm a hypocrite? Er......

And patchx et al explained the level problems a lot better then I could...

Demolisher
04-20-2002, 11:40 AM
I like the scenes, but I also hated the teeth!! :eek:. That was too freaky, especially on Mon Mothma. I wish Raven had made the game like Elite Force where it was just skins for the lips moving.

Brodieman
04-20-2002, 12:23 PM
I think Jan knows Kyle better then Kyle does, she knew that regardless of his practice he was a jedi at heart, hence it didn't surprise her as much as Kyle thought it would, i agree though it would of been better if she showed some expression, maybe raising one eyebrow and sarcastically say "Really?!".

As for civilians in the game, i would of liked some, make the Bar a bit more crowded where th einnocents hit the floor and hide behind tables while you "take out the trash". Of course one could argue that no citizen in their right mind would be walking through a heavily defended area and through hordes of people obviuosly gearin up for a huge fight. It wouldn't be a case of "Hon, I'll get the milk from the shops, i'll just run through those disruptor blasts and avoid the thrermal detonators,. oh i'll get the paper too". It would be more of a case of "God Damn!! Pack your arse Hon, we're leaving this place!"

StormHammer
04-20-2002, 02:11 PM
In terms of cut scenes...I'll paraphrase Luke...

You think making them this way was a bad idea? I'm inclined to agree with ya...

Having recently played through RTCW, I have to say that the in-engine cut scenes in that game were better executed, and the in-engine characters better animated - including lip synching. The in-engine cut scenes in Outcast were not very smooth, and the character faces were not as well conceived, IMHO. I also did not like the gritted teeth...or the sharp lip movements...because it did give the characters more of a puppet look.

They did address some of the issues people had raised in the past about adding more action and dynamism to the cut scenes...but they still could not attain the same level as the original Jedi Knight. Yes, I'm aware of some of the cheesy acting in JK's FMV, and some people hate Jason Court's portrayal of Kyle (I thought it was very well executed, personally), but it gave the characters the much-needed human element.

The reason for no FMV this time around? Well, some people like in-engine cut scenes because they say it's more immersive. On the other hand, there is the issue of cost. Hiring actors, shooting and compositing footage against CGI backgrounds takes a lot of time, talent and money. JK's cut scenes cost a bomb, apparently...so to have the same in Outcast would have cost a small fortune.

Nevertheless, with an in-engine character, you cannot yet achieve a properly animated face that can realistically portray emotion. UT2 and Unreal 2 do include more advanced facial animation techniques, and I'll be really interested to see how they turned out. Nevertheless, even in RTCW the characters simply speak words (with some smooth mouth movements that include the jawbone) and blink...and that's it in terms of facial animation - though it looks better than Outcast. Body motion does help to convey a certain attitude or feeling as well. I only use RTW as an example, because it was also built on the Q3 engine, so from where I'm standing a higher quality of animation could have been achieved...especially after seeing some of the facial features on the SOF2 characters, which are capable of diffferent expressions and have moveable eyes. I was expecting at least that level of animation in Outcast...and it fell far short, to the detriment of the game.

Personally, as it stands, I would have preferred it if they had removed the character cut scenes entirely, and just left you looking out of Kyle's eyes on the scene as it unfolds. Half-Life managed it very well, and led to an even more immersive experience, because you saw everything from your character's viewpoint, including blackouts. Why not just employ these tactics in Outcast, and leave the cut scenes to external shots of ships, and seeing what other characters are up to, like Galak Fyaar? In RTCW too, you only ever see BJ when he's on the plane...

The last thing that annoyed me about the cut scenes was the way it dumped you from the first cut scene to your start point. The opening scene was quite short, and jarred, IMO. I just sat back stunned for a moment when I found myself at the start position, after being aboard the ship a millisecond before. JK smoothly led you into the start of the game (you start at the same point where the cut scene ends), and even MotS, with itís own in-engine cut scenes, managed to lead you to the start point (mostly because it only shows the same installation where you begin). This might have been alleviated in Outcast by adding perhaps another 30 seconds of footageÖ (3 seconds showing the ship cutting through the atmosphere of the planet - fade - 5 seconds for a landing - fade - 10 seconds while Kyle and Jan get off the ship, look around and set out - fade - 10 seconds to overlook the installation and exchange worried glances, or trade a few words - and then a second to show Kyle jump down - and fade). I feel it would have made a wealth of difference to the opening of the game.

As for story development and character interaction...yes there are some obvious loopholes, and they seem a bit incomplete.

You forgot the one about Jan being interrogated about the Jedi Academy. Why should she have been, when Desann had already been a student there, and would have known far more about the place than Jan (a non-Jedi) ever could? And why would Luke agree for Kyle to have his lightsaber back, when the guy's angry, and teetering on the Dark side again? It's like..."Hey, I can see you're really angry, and you want to go on a quest for revenge..no problem, here's your lightsaber." I would have thought Luke would have given Kyle a lecture about his aggressive tendencies...



As far as civilian NPCs go...again, I have to agree they would have added a great deal more depth to the game. Even without the 'moral' mode of play that leads to the Dark/Light path, they are still neutral characters to protect. And as for making it a goal to save them...why? It wasn't necessarily a goal in JK...it's just that if you shot civilians, it hastened you down the path to the Dark side. In Outcast, they could have simply left that out altogether...and let the player decide if they wanted to rescue, or kill, the civilians. The first time I played JK, some civilians died...the next time I played it, I made it a personal goal to see that they didn't die - which meant putting myself in the line of fire. This was my choice as a player, to protect the innocent and weak. The only points in Outcast where you could really protect NPCs was scripted, so if you didn't save them, you failed the mission. Personally, I don't think that aspect was really needed. So the NPCs die...but then, you can choose to either care about that or not. If your playing as a Lightsider...then you feel guilty about not saving them, and try harder the next time. If you're a Darksider, you turn your back and walk away. The other problem with it being scripted is that it does make the game more linear. Like if you let the R5 unit get destroyed...okay, lose a bonus point...but there should have then been another way to reach your objective - rather than the constant reloads until you managed to get the tactics right. That is not the best way to design a game, IMHO...and I found this annoying in RTCW.

You'd hit a certain point, and then unless you were very careful, and used just the right tactics straight away, you died and had to reload. This was true of Jedi Outcast in a few places, including some of the puzzles...like the garbage truck in Nar Shadaa. The first time around, you don't know what to expect or do, and it dumps you on a ledge...from which there is no escape. So you hit the reload button. But why is there no way off that platform? That is a shortcoming of some of the level design. JK and MotS nearly always provided a way out of a sticky situation, usually in the form of an elevator, and I only ever had to reload when I died, usually through carelessness. How simple a task would it have been to put an elevator behind that door...so that you could go back to another part of the level? But I digress.

The other thing I noticed about level designs is that none of them incorporated habitats or living quarters. The Nar Shadaa and Bespin city levels, even if cleared of pedestrians...should still have shown signs of people having lived there, from posters on the walls to shop fronts, restaurants, cantinas, workshops, etc. Both JK and MotS had city designs that incorporated habitations, and even market places and an open-air theatre (MotS). So yes, I feel the design of those levels could have been better in those terms, and would have allowed a greater sense of immersion in those environments. I also didn't notice any graffiti in Nar Shadaa...whatever happened to the scum of the universe? :eyeraise:

So, while Jedi Outcast now remains one of my favourite games, it does have issues...and I do feel many of these issues are a result of the relatively short development period. Where the game really shines brightly in many areas...it's a bit dull and tarnished in others. A bit like the Star Wars universe, actually. :)

And for those who don't know...Raven were given the green light for development in February of 2001...so the development took about 13 months. ;)

Eternity
04-20-2002, 03:32 PM
To me, the essential core of the problem:

Raven treated the game to be played like a game.

This has been preying on my mind since I completed Outcast.

From garbage truck puzzles to fake cities, the intent was to be playing a game--not to be a simulation of real life. Standard levels, with no practical reasons for most of the architecture-are like that because the only reason for them is to provide puzzles and enemies for Kyle to shoot at.

As such, the game was crippled from the start. Standards were crippled from the start. I love the guys at Raven, but a fundamental point--they churn out high-quality games, but yes, they churn them out. They are like EA. They don't aim to set the bar for a particular genre, they aim to make a decent game that'll sell.

That's why I always root for game companies like Lionhead Studios--sure, perhaps the merchandise is crippled and flawed (Black and White for example) but they ALWAYS go for the best. They go for over the top. Another example is Dungeon Siege, Half-Life, Jedi Knight. These games, to me, felt like they had some genuine effort put into them--I just didn't get that with the cool stuff in Outcast...

Don't get me wrong. The game is great, and Raven must have put a LOT of effort into the game. They just didn't want to go the extra mile....IMHO.

The FPS has such potential, and it upsets me. Half-Life went to extra mile, and look at them.

EXTRA EFFORT PAYS. It provides hype. It'll sell.

The Star Wars franchise with the FPS/RPG market has such potential, but devs just don't want to do it. Imagine--playing a game where you first have to rise through the ranks, being trained....go through cities helping the innocent..

Star Wars Galaxies is straining to tap fully the power of the Star Wars franchise, at least, and I'm rooting like hell for them.

StormHammer
04-20-2002, 07:17 PM
Originally posted by Eternity
Don't get me wrong. The game is great, and Raven must have put a LOT of effort into the game. They just didn't want to go the extra mile....IMHO.

To be fair...I think Raven were also under a great deal of pressure to get this game out in a short time frame. Remember that Jedi Outcast only came to light after Obi-Wan was announced to be moving to the X-Box. I still feel (though it is just my personal opinion), that Lucasarts felt bad about disappointing the fans, and decided to make a sequel in the DF series... This move may have been unplanned...and so the budget to produce the game may not have been as large as it could have been - or they stipulated a fast-track development so that JK fans would get a decent game not too long after Obi-Wan's release. Again, that's purely speculation.

If that was the case...then Raven had a very finite timeframe to work within...and they had proven that they could produce a high-quality game in a short development cycle on Heretic II - which featured a lot of moves and attacks in 3rd person. So from where I'm sitting it made perfect sense to choose Raven to develop JKII. However, it should be noted that H2's SP game is also quite linear...and quite short.

If they had been given a longer timeframe for development, and perhaps a larger budget, they may have come close to producing a game without as many issues as people have with this one (myself included) - but then, we also would not be playing the game, perhaps for another year.

To be honest, I think it's a remarkable achievement that Raven managed to produce a high quality product in such a short time...but it does feel incomplete.

I can only hope, therefore, that Lucasarts will sit back, and mull over some of the feedback in these forums, and take some of those issues on board...and then hopefully make the smart move, and start thinking about the next game in this series now. If I was in their position...I would see that JK2 is a success, and there is certainly an opportunity to build on that success. I believe that a sequel should be given a longer development time, to thoroughly address those things that players consider to be flaws or issues with JKII, and improve upon them. One of these issues, which would require a longer development time, is the cut scenes. Personally I think they should all be CGI...or go the Half-Life route and leave most of them out in favour of in-game scripted sequences. If they start putting a rough framework together, and start planning now, then it should be possible to produce a well-polished sequel in about 3 years time.

Of course, that's assuming they would want to do that...but I'm certainly interested in another game in this series.

The FPS has such potential, and it upsets me. Half-Life went to extra mile, and look at them.

Yes, I agree that the FPS does have a great deal of potential, especially in the Star Wars universe. A decent Bounty Hunter game and a Rebel/Imperial Commando game set in the time of the Classic trilogy would go down a treat with me. I'm sure there are lots of other ideas too...including the time of the Knights Of The Old Republic.

In terms of Half-Life...the SP part of that game has issues as well. Personally, I didnt like most of the Xen levels...except fighting the Head-Crab boss...I can't be bothered to look up the name of it. The end boss was rubbish, IMO. The story was classic 50's SF B-movie stuff, but well executed in the delivery, largely due to a lack of cut scenes. Yes, there was some innovation...but there were also maze-like crawls to get to an area so you could open a door from the other side and end up where you started from. With all the guns, etc., at your disposal, I think most people would make short work of a door. And some of the puzzles again felt just like that...conveyor belts that led nowhere, just going around and around, so you had to jump from one to another. This type of thing is like the Doomgiver's Rubik's Cube...a puzzle for the sake of a puzzle, and nothing more.

Basically, I haven't played a single FPS that hasn't had something wrong with it...and you usually don't realise it until you've finished the game and reflected on it, and then you think...'Hey, hang on a minute. What was that all about? Why couldn't I do this? How come I couldn't break that stupid door down instead of travelling around half the level to end up at the same point?' etc...

When it comes to JKII's story...it is pretty much a classic, simple, linear Star Wars plot, executed in the traditional way with cut scenes. Nothing wrong with that...lots of other games have that. I though the story was okay - and better than Half-Life's when it comes down to it - but not quite as good as JK's. It even parallels that of RTCW...agents sent in to infiltrate an enemy base...who stumble across fiendish experiments...and track down the perpetrators...and kill the nasty end boss. :eyeraise:

If the game industry really wants to try to break the mould in terms of story development, they need to go back to the roots of story-telling...books. Sometimes a book comes along that does bring something fresh to the scene, and does have some decent plot twists. Trying to emulate the movies in terms of story is a bad idea...because we've seen it all before. However, movies are all about presentation...so games developers can learn a lot from movies in that respect (such as camera angles, action and cutting between characters etc., in cut scenes).

Of course, that brings up the question of whether cut scenes are needed at all. For something like Half-Life, where you are totally focused on one person's experience, they probably are not needed. If you look at Star Wars, however, it' always been more than that. Dogfights in space, big ships, and taking a quick peak at what the enemy is up to. These are the things where cut scenes are really needed...but as I said above, it would not have bothered me at all if the character scenes involving Kyle were done from his POV...in a similar way to Half-Life. :)

Eternity
04-20-2002, 10:31 PM
To be fair...I think Raven were also under a great deal of pressure to get this game out in a short time frame. Remember that Jedi Outcast only came to light after Obi-Wan was announced to be moving to the X-Box. I still feel (though it is just my personal opinion), that Lucasarts felt bad about disappointing the fans, and decided to make a sequel in the DF series...

That very well may be, but my opinion about LucasArts is still down there with Enron. :( Enrich yourself with this brilliant little tidbit:

Question: Did the "Bring Obi-Wan Back to the PC Petition" (with over 7000 signatures) raise LucasArts attention that PC fans wanted another game like Jedi Knight?

Answer: No. A Jedi Knight sequel was always under consideration since itís one of our most successful game series.
-from interview


Way to insult all the people who actually cared about that, PR Person. ;) And so bluntly, too. Made me really feel like you guys care. So, my opinion of them is still hovering around the 'disgust' mark.

To me, the budget wasn't huge (and I'm guessing it was pretty big) because they didn't want to waste a lot of money and the Raven guys knew what they were doing--they knew they could do it in that time span.

To be honest, I think it's a remarkable achievement that Raven managed to produce a high quality product in such a short time...

Ditto. I was impressed...

As far as LucasArts sitting back and saying:

"Well, you know, I think we should give the sequel of this game a larger budget and really go over the top on features to make a game that's Game of The Year caliber'

.....to me, it doesn't look like it's happening. :( Hey, maybe they will..and maybe they will win back some of my respect. Too bad Raven's gonna be making it anyway, not LucasArts, though. And yes, I think Raven has the potential and talent to make a real nice, original game. Even if the only thing that motivates them is money :D

You bring up some great points about Half-Life. Nobody liked the Zen levels. :) And you're right, some of the puzzles were there just to be puzzles, and some of the level design sucked. But, to me, that's the best FPS that came close to what can be accomplished....in terms of telling a story with great cut-scenes, at least. :) I'll be fair. :) Maybe a better example of a game with lots of content, just so it can be a really good game, is Baldurs Gate 2. I didn't want to mention it before because it's an RPG, and you HAVE to have a lot of content for an RPG...but to me, this one just reflected the effort put into it.

EDIT: WTF? What happened to the rest of my message? :( sigh. All that typing, lost...