Conference Call

GWJ Conference Call Episode 109

Left 4 Dead, Gears of War 2, Fallout 3, Fable 2, Delivering Game Story, Special Guest Shawn Elliott, Your Emails and more!

2K Boston's Shawn Elliott joins us to talk about what we're playing, how things are going at the new digs, story in games and retractable hummingbird tongues.

To contact us, email [email protected]hjobs.com! Send us your thoughts on the show, pressing issues you want to talk about or whatever else is on your mind. You can even send a 30 second audio question or comment (MP3 format please) if you're so inclined.

  • Subscribe with iTunes
  • Subscribe with RSS
  • Subscribe with Yahoo!
Download the official apps
  • Download the GWJ Conference Call app for Android
  • Download the GWJ Conference Call app for Android

Show credits

Music credits: 

Intro/Outro Music - Ian Dorsch, Willowtree Audioworks

"Crocodile Tears" - Zoo (Workbench) - www.workbench-music.com - 0:48:08
"Sunflower" - Zoo (Workbench) - www.Workbench-music.com - 1:13:27

Comments

Certis wrote:

I want to take your idea, dress it up in something nice and take it on a hot date. Then I want to take it home, light some candles and get down to sweet love making. Eventually we'll get married, have some kids and retire together.

There'll be some yelling, the occasional smack, but in the end it'll apologize and he'll use cover-up.

Quintin_Stone wrote:
Certis wrote:

I want to take your idea, dress it up in something nice and take it on a hot date. Then I want to take it home, light some candles and get down to sweet love making. Eventually we'll get married, have some kids and retire together.

There'll be some yelling, the occasional smack, but in the end it'll apologize and he'll use cover-up.

Then Mass Effect walks in and wonders why he's been cheating on her.

I associate most of my life's encounters with the plight of the humming bird. Just a few days ago I lost one of my socks, and some how the retractable tongue of a humming bird was both the cause and the resolution.

wordsmythe wrote:
Coldstream wrote:

VATS interface for conversations.
...
Cons:

New information in conversations may lead to new "interests", requiring another converse-VATS round.
Would require a player-character voice, which might hurt immersion for some players.
More difficult to code, perhaps.

That's a great idea (and certainly a bigger step forward than my idea of converting the tree format to more of a dialogue web). I could see new topics being foreseeable with high enough INT or similar stat, or popping up in the corner during conversation (at which point you could pause and reconfigure your dialogue tactics).

Yeah... coldstream - drop whatever you're doing in life and become a dialog designer. It's a great idea! I may even steal it - with your permission of course!

This may be one of the greatest ideas in the history of videogames. Paging Mr. Howard. Paging Mr. Levine. Warren Spector, pick up on Aisle 3.

Duoae wrote:

Yeah... coldstream - drop whatever you're doing in life and become a dialog designer. It's a great idea! I may even steal it - with your permission of course! :)

Hey, absolutely. I know that designers are sometimes constrained from using ideas for fear of liability, and I'm not sure what the official way around that is, but for what it's worth:

I hereby relinquish all rights and claims to compensation for the idea of a conversation mode in computer and video games wherein the player is presented with a dynamic list of conversation options based on the character's current objectives, quests, or interests, and within which the dialogue is then explored automatically based on the player's choice of options. Any and all game designers, game companies, development studios, writers, or any other company or individual associated with the computer and video gaming industry may use this idea freely and without restriction, and may modify it as they see fit.

There, that ought to do it. Probably a silly thing to type out, but if this idea is something that a game-designer might have an even vague interest in exploring, I want it in the public domain. As far as I'm concerned, my reward would be getting to play a game with such a system.

I'd get a warm fuzzy.

Coldstream wrote:

As far as I'm concerned, my reward would be getting to play a game with such a system.

Someone needs to write a "Jaynestown/Hero of Canton" type song about this. --You know, something we can sing in a pub once dialouge-trees have been banished forever...

Sang in a Yo-ho-ho piratey sort of way.

Dm________________Am
There was a time when we were mute,
Dm________________Am
Our songs and rants became dilute,
Dm___________C
And any time we were wantin'
F________C______Dm
The dialog tree was found lacking.

______G________________Dm
Oh, he came from far and he came from near,
____G_________Dm
The internet was his brazier,
____G______________Dm
And though he came to us that day,
___Bb__________C________Dm
The legend that he gave us did pave the way.

Cold he was but that's okay,
For his heart shone with bravery,
And as he wrote those words that day,
He banished to hell olden way.

Oh, he came from far and he came from near,
The internet did strain to hear,
The deed that he did wrought that day,
In the legend of the making that he did say.

And thus did we all bow our heads,
In shame for our short-sightedness,
When he did stand and step and spring,
The hero of the legend of conversing.

Oh, he came from far and he came from near,
The internet did quake in fear,
The name that people sang that day,
Was ColdStream the greatest! Hip Hooray!

mp3 versions on asking.

Duoae: Get recording, it needs to be on the CC asap.

MrDeVil909 wrote:

Duoae: Get recording, it needs to be on the CC asap.

I did it and mailed it to the CC email address. Let's hope the Competition Commission find it to their liking.... though it may just confuse them.

Duoae wrote:
MrDeVil909 wrote:

Duoae: Get recording, it needs to be on the CC asap.

I did it and mailed it to the CC email address.

The Creative Commons has an email address?

Duoae wrote:
MrDeVil909 wrote:

Duoae: Get recording, it needs to be on the CC asap.

I did it and mailed it to the CC email address. Let's hope the Competition Commission find it to their liking.... though it may just confuse them.

Awesome! Now I just want to hear a rousing chorus of it on the podcast, with a narrator-esque voice-over from Ken Levine talking about how the industry will be implementing the idea immediately, and...well, I'll be in my bunk.

Duoae wrote:
MrDeVil909 wrote:

Duoae: Get recording, it needs to be on the CC asap.

I did it and mailed it to the CC email address. Let's hope the Competition Commission find it to their liking.... though it may just confuse them.

Great work,

.... wait a minute.... :/

Coldstream wrote:
Duoae wrote:
MrDeVil909 wrote:

Duoae: Get recording, it needs to be on the CC asap.

I did it and mailed it to the CC email address. Let's hope the Competition Commission find it to their liking.... though it may just confuse them.

Awesome! Now I just want to hear a rousing chorus of it on the podcast, with a narrator-esque voice-over from Ken Levine talking about how the industry will be implementing the idea immediately, and...well, I'll be in my bunk.

That would be a life peaking early. :p

It's nice to know that Elysium has the show covered for WoW geography. As soon as rabbit mentioned the miserable run across Duskwood, I was saying, "There's a flight point across the river at Sentinel Hill in Westfall."

Duoae wrote:

a song

Nice work.

Howdy from Australia. Great Podcast just started listening.

On the question of dialog in games, it reminded me of an ongoing conversation, me and my friend love to have, where we speculate on how games will play in the near to far future. I think alot of the problem will go away when we can simply talk to the characters we meet. With the sucess of the speech recognition softwear in that new Tom Clancy game this is a feature that could be implimented in the near future. If you want to know where to find someone or someplace you simply ask via you headset.

I have been having an absolute blast playing littleBigplanet with my 5 year old daughter. Hearing her squeal with delight and burst out laughing again and again has made this one of the best gaming experiences in recent memory. Sure it quickly became too hard for her but I simply help her along. If this game could be played through by a five year old it would most likely suck. While I am working on the way forward she is happily changing her appearance or covering the terrain with stickers and decorations. There always parts of every level she can do and many that are both a surprise and delight like when she was able zoom around in a car knocking stuff over. She loves dying just to see the funny vaporization animation. Maybe as a girl she is less concerned with being able to master the game and is more wiling just to be part of the experience. Anyway this is one beautiful game and anyone who says games are not ART (either good or bad) should have a look at this game. The making stuff section is also awesome to do with your child, we had a hoot making weird animals, and exploding snowmen.

My daughter also loves the DS game trauma center. It has taught her alot about anatomy and she is keen to be a doctor. Trauma Center 1 is too hard for kids but II has a difficulty setting so I put it on easy and she can do many of the proceedure start to finnish. This game is ideal for the DS.

Anyway great show, will be listening to all the back episodes

keep up the good work

Coldstream wrote:

So I was listening to the podcast while driving, (...)
What do you guys think?

Best. Application. Of. VATS. EVAR. Period. Exclamation Point.

Hate to dig this up, but I have to say that I agree with Rob 100%. I've tried Fallout 3 and I'm going running back to Fable 2. I just can't take the endless dialogue trees in Fallout 3. The fetch quests of information where I literally spend hours trying to get that one morsel of information that may help me complete a quest. My goodness. Back to Fable 2 for me.