Arkane's Dishonored

Demosthenes wrote:
McChuck wrote:
I figured it was the 3 red ones but even just one white one has the "sound like a cat being dropped into an open piano." So, a tad confusing. Maybe there was a hint in the Loading screens but loads were super fast so I rarely read them.

There's a small cat being dropped when you get the 1-3 whites... it's a garfield being dropped when you get spotted with the red (which is what counts for the ghost achievement), and usually they'll start yelling and you'll hear swords being unsheathed, shots being taken at you, etc... music then ramps up a bit too.

Really dumb question but how to I through grenades? I have some but none of the number keys select them.

iaintgotnopants wrote:
Really dumb question but how to I through grenades? I have some but none of the number keys select them.

Quick select wheel, middle mouse button by default. It's also useful because it slows time for free when you use it.

I guess a more thorough explanation would be: you have to select them as your "action". The same way you would select darts, teleport, dark vision, heart, etc. There are two ways of doing that, as far as I recall. One is, as Latrine already pointed out, a quick select wheel. While the other is to scroll through all of available action options. I believe they are both, by default, performed with a mouse scroll button. Scrolling up and down will switch between next/previous action, while pressing it will bring up the selection wheel, as Latrine pointed out.

I just started playing Dishonored, and I'd like to aim for the Clean Hands (kill no one) and Mostly Flesh and Steel (spend no runes) achievements, and play Corvo like Garrett—ghost and non-lethal. Hard difficulty, almost no UI elements (interactions, tutorials, simple crosshair).

I've finished the first real mission (the Overseer) on Normal, but am thinking about restarting. All the weapons and Ezio-trumping ease of combat are making the "easy outs" unwelcomely tempting—so bumping up to Hard should disincentivize direct confrontations. Eschewing rune upgrades seems like I'm giving up big parts of the game, although there are still Piero's upgrades and bone charms.

My big concern is that the Clean Hands achievement seems so brittle—one kill in the whole game (20 hours? 25 hours?) voids the whole thing, and you might not even know where that kill (or specific choke/sleep dart!) happened.

Is this a reasonable way to attempt to play the game, the first time anyway?

I started out thinking I wasn't going to kill anybody but after the first mission it said I had killed somebody even though I did not such thing. I don't think my kill count per mission has been under 30 since. The skill that makes people turn to ash when you kill them is just too convenient.

Gravey wrote:
[Lots of overthinking...]
Is this a reasonable way to attempt to play the game, the first time anyway?

No. Absolutely not. Instead of cheevos and what not, why don't you have fun with the game, the way it was meant to be played. Go in there and do things because you want to do them and they are fun, not because there is some silly achievement about it.

MoonDragon wrote:
Gravey wrote:
[Lots of overthinking...]
Is this a reasonable way to attempt to play the game, the first time anyway?

No. Absolutely not. Instead of cheevos and what not, why don't you have fun with the game, the way it was meant to be played. Go in there and do things because you want to do them and they are fun, not because there is some silly achievement about it.

I second this! Go experience the game, then come back for another playthrough if you want the achievements. There's just so much to do and try, you shouldn't hamper yourself with a specific play type.

soonerjudd wrote:
MoonDragon wrote:
Gravey wrote:
[Lots of overthinking...]
Is this a reasonable way to attempt to play the game, the first time anyway?

No. Absolutely not. Instead of cheevos and what not, why don't you have fun with the game, the way it was meant to be played. Go in there and do things because you want to do them and they are fun, not because there is some silly achievement about it.

I second this! Go experience the game, then come back for another playthrough if you want the achievements. There's just so much to do and try, you shouldn't hamper yourself with a specific play type.

Where as I found it a great way to play. It made the levels puzzles to solve rather than a series of encounters. Ghost and Clean Hands in my first playthrough were great. Once I finish Saint's Row 3. I'm going back through Dishonored again on a rampage.

MoonDragon wrote:
Gravey wrote:
[Lots of overthinking...]
Is this a reasonable way to attempt to play the game, the first time anyway?

No. Absolutely not. Instead of cheevos and what not, why don't you have fun with the game, the way it was meant to be played.

Well that's the thing: because the game doesn't have one way it's meant to be played—or maybe it does, but it has too many sops for stealth-action fans, neophytes, and bros. Dishonored has been rubbing me the wrong way with all its non-stop UI assault (an obvious sop to modern AAA game design, as Arkane, to their credit, give the player the option to shut it all off), three separate currencies for character upgrades, a slew of side missions, and characters that won't f*cking shut up and let me play (Granny Rags, I'm looking at you—actually, I'm not looking for you anymore).

What I want Dishonored to have is a purity of focus like—wait for it—Thief. Because if the game can be blasted through, guns blazing, in five superficial hours, then that suggests to me there's at least a wrong way to play it (or maybe "not an appropriate way"), even if that's a valid choice.

So I want to play the game I was looking forward to by bringing that purity of focus to it. It's not about cheevo-chasing. Rather, Clean Hands and Mostly Flesh and Steel indicate that Dishonored can be played that way, so those are the strictures I want to adopt to get out of Dishonored the game I want to play. Then playing on Hard really incentivizes avoiding the guards.

Demosthenes wrote:
Where as I found it a great way to play. It made the levels puzzles to solve rather than a series of encounters. Ghost and Clean Hands in my first playthrough were great.

Great! Just wanted to know it can be done. Thanks.

iaintgotnopants wrote:
The skill that makes people turn to ash when you kill them is just too convenient.

Yeah, that's the sort of the thing I want to avoid. I appreciate that all those options are there, even if I'm afraid they dilute the game, so I'd like to avoid them before I just end up stabbing my way through the whole thing and ultimately being underwhelmed. The first time, anyway, as Demosthenes says.

At the beginning of any game you don't really know how it's meant to be played, you have to learn that through playing it and pre-conceived notions from achievements or here-say from others won't really help. Achievements like clean hands are a challenge at the extreme end of what you can do within the game, but it constrains you so much and stops you from thinking about using the whole array of options available to play that it really isn't a good way to play the first time.

Dishonored isn't Thief, it's not Deus Ex, it's not Bioshock. It's it's own thing and you need to find out what that is. Stop cutting yourself off from finding out what it is.

That's good advice, Scratched. But I still tried very hard not to murder anyone, simply because that's how I like to play, whenever I can. I realized recently that I didn't get the achievement, not because of the Granny Rags bug (which I'm sure I triggered), but because I killed the assassins attacking the Queen. For some reason, that was perfectly okay by me, expected and justified, where I was unwilling to sneak up on people and knowingly kill them when I had another option. I thought of my Corvo as not being a murderer, even though he shot several of those early attackers.

Whatever the basis is for my gaming morality, it's apparently not logic.

Malor wrote:
That's good advice, Scratched. But I still tried very hard not to murder anyone, simply because that's how I like to play, whenever I can. I realized recently that I didn't get the achievement, not because of the Granny Rags bug (which I'm sure I triggered), but because I killed the assassins attacking the Queen. For some reason, that was perfectly okay by me, expected and justified, where I was unwilling to sneak up on people and knowingly kill them when I had another option. I thought of my Corvo as not being a murderer, even though he shot several of those early attackers.

Whatever the basis is for my gaming morality, it's apparently not logic.

I find your process logical. At the start of the game, your duty, your 'job' is one of protector, and you are, for all intents and purposes putting your own life, your own safety, at risk to save others (in this case a women you clearly have feelings for, and her daughter).

In that scenario, I think it boiled down to 'kill or be killed' so the extreme nature of the solution is justified.

Those assassins don't count Malor. The achievement for clean hands starts from the prison on. Or at least the didn't count for me.

Gravey: If you are going for no upgrades, don't do the granny rags storyline. Avoid her like the plague as there is no way to get ghost and clean hands without specific upgrades later. If you don't complete her stuff, those requirements disappear.

From what I've seen, the place where people get a death in the first mission is

Spoiler:
the door exploding, killing any unconscious guards nearby.

Hyetal wrote:
From what I've seen, the place where people get a death in the first mission is

Spoiler:
the door exploding, killing any unconscious guards nearby.

What caused my problem was sleep darts, amusingly.

Scratched wrote:
Dishonored isn't Thief, it's not Deus Ex, it's not Bioshock. It's it's own thing and you need to find out what that is. Stop cutting yourself off from finding out what it is.

Whoo-hoo-hoo, look who knows so much. It just so happens that my Corvo here is only mostly flesh and steel. There's a big difference between "mostly flesh and steel" and "all flesh and steel". Mostly flesh and steel is slightly upgraded.

Gravey wrote:
iaintgotnopants wrote:
The skill that makes people turn to ash when you kill them is just too convenient.

Yeah, that's the sort of the thing I want to avoid. I appreciate that all those options are there, even if I'm afraid they dilute the game, so I'd like to avoid them before I just end up stabbing my way through the whole thing and ultimately being underwhelmed. The first time, anyway, as Demosthenes says.

That skill sounds fantastic from a utilitarian point of view - no body, no mess, no alerted guards. Nice and clean. However, it encouraged a tactic that I was trying to avoid: killing. What I was not trying to do was a "Clean Hands" playthrough; I took the same approach to this as I do most achievements: if it happens, cool. If not, whatever. I tried not to kill anyone, but sh*t happened and I just rolled with it. A guard turns unexpectedly while I was creeping behind him? He gets the knife, quick and quiet. I'd rather kill the one than try to sleep dart him while he yells for back-up, all of whom I'd inevitably have to kill or go out of my way to avoid. So though he may have died in part for my own convenience, I'm cool with that.

I had a method to how I played, but I didn't try to artificially make the game into a thing; I let myself be fluid and adaptable to the situation, achievements be damned, and it was all the better an experience because of it.

FWIW, it's a pre-conceived notion borne not from hear-say but from Harvey Smith himself, explicitly saying Dishonored can be completed totally non-lethalily—evidenced by the achievement.

I'm not intending to cheevo-chase, or ignore huge swaths of mechanics. I'm looking at all the tools this very diverse game offers the player, picking the ones I want to use, and going that route. Which is exactly the way Dishonored is meant to be played.

And now I'm having a hell of a lot of fun with it. I started the Overseer mission this afternoon, and 2.5 hours later (wife and baby went out for the afternoon, leaving me with the surround sound cranked up for the first time in months) I had only made it as far as Holger Square, having ghostily explored everything except the first floor of Dr. Galvini's lab and eschewing Granny Rags (highlights: "Is this what it's going to be like when we're married?", and the view from the end of the broken bridge by Darren's corpse). This is absolutely the stealth experience I've been waiting for since Deadly Shadows, or at a stretch Chaos Theory, the type of experience that "stealth-action" hybrids are too compromised to fulfill.

Add that to the fact Dishonored, if I was using weapons and runes, would just as much be a stealth-action game, is equally impressive.

If you want to play the game as pure nonlethal stealth then it's certainly supported, but personally I find that trying to do so ruins my experience with these kinds of games because it takes too much patience to execute and I feel like I miss out on the combat design and world exploration. I burned out on Deus Ex: Human Revolution for that reason. Since then I've let myself be as violent as I wanted in Mark of the Ninja and Dishonored and have enjoyed myself much more because of that. In fact, one of the things I liked about Mark of the Ninja is that there is no achievement for a nonlethal playthrough, although you can almost do one.

The problem with the Mostly Flesh and Steel achievement is that some of the powers are quite useful for a nonlethal ghost run. Specifically Dark Vision, Possession, Bend Time, Agility and upgraded Blink. They would make a ghost nonlethal run more pleasurable but if you also want that achievement you have to be patient enough to just use level one Blink. This means that it's just harder and takes more time to get to places you want to go. Although I have to admit that I started a new playthrough on Easy, so enemies have minimal vision cones, to get these achievements but I don't know if I'm going to stick with it. I just don't find creeping around invisible vision cones to be a very fun mechanic for more than a couple hours.

Latrine wrote:
it takes too much patience . . . . you have to be patient

There is a certain sickness of the mind in fervent Thief fans, that causes them to believe that standing absolutely stock still for minutes at a time, staring at an almost pitch black screen and memorizing every step of a guard patrol, is "fun".

I have a terminal case.

To wit, I just finished Overseer, non-lethal ghost on hard, total time: 5.5 hours. The only area I didn't explore was the Kennel.

Okay, I maaaay not try to ghost every level. But non-lethal, minimal UI, un-runed (it's not like there aren't bone charms and gear upgrades I can't use) is definitely looking like the game I want to play.

And to be clear, I'm not trying to get Dishonored to ape Thief: the latter is all about light and dark, as well as sound propagation. There are multiple pathways, but traversal is primarily through creating your own routes by creating shadows. Dishonored's stealth is instead so far predicated on line-of-sight: discovering the best pathway that keeps you obstructed from sight is the primary means of traversal. So since I won't be, say, using the rat tunnels, then my Dishonored has been all about verticality: using my limited Blink and the games' excellent mantling (as good as Mirror's Edge—certainly better than Thief) to keep up above the guards and find my ways over locked doors and so on. Plus it just feels so right to be on the rooftops.

And man some views of Dunwall are stunning: there's a video game city that puts to shame all other video game cities, at least in terms of evocation.

Anyway, I only read up to like page 15 of this thread, so pardon if I'm repeating things others have said. But the game's really clicking with me now. I'll be posting about it some more, no doubt. Sorry in advance.

Latrine wrote:
I just don't find creeping around invisible vision cones to be a very fun mechanic for more than a couple hours.

A couple hours? You'll hardly finish a level with that attitude, taffer!

Specifically Dark Vision, Possession, Bend Time, Agility and upgraded Blink.

True story.

If you're not worried about ghosting, but are going non-lethal, combat sleep darts (instantaneous effect even if guard is already on alert) are very helpful. Not to mention, there are optics for a zoom for your mask, stealth assistance for your boots. I could see doing Mostly Flesh and Steel for a regular runthrough, but Clean Hands (which does very frequently require weird paths that require at least Blink 2, if not Stop Time) and Ghost (Same) seems especially massochistic to me. :X I want to do a mostly flesh and steal run, but I can't see how it would mesh well with anything else.

I'ma just toss my own random thoughts in:

I feel like it's best to aim for a direction your first time through instead of purely going one way. My first play through was a Low Chaos run. I only killed when I saw no other option available. This meant Death-From-Above-ing two Tall Boys to complete a side quest and get somewhere safe, sure. But otherwise I tried to exit every level with 0 kills.

Now I'm playing a High Chaos run, and while I'm still being stealthy, it's more so I can find a perfect perch to shoot guys in the head from with my crossbow. It's fun in a different way, but honestly my preference is low chaos.

But I like these as they don't offer me strict guidelines. I'd love to replay the game to try and do Clean Hands, but to me it seems like if you're going both Ghost AND Clean Hands then one is going to interfere with the other.

To each their own, though. It is possible Gravey enjoys more strict and punishing rule sets. But personally I wouldn't recommend it unless you've learned every map of the game first.

But I like these as they don't offer me strict guidelines. I'd love to replay the game to try and do Clean Hands, but to me it seems like if you're going both Ghost AND Clean Hands then one is going to interfere with the other.

Only one spot where their not compatible towards the end in the section of sewers after the Lord Regent mission...

Spoiler:
Granny Rags versus that dude with the muttonstache, this requires stop time, stealing the key from Rags, then blinking away as quick as possible to avoid being detected, otherwise taking a side in either one can lead to a death. :(

...Otherwise it worked out pretty well for me. Lot of sleeper holds and sleep darts and blinking past enemies by taking to the rooftops or blinking from hiding place to hiding place.

ccesarano wrote:
but to me it seems like if you're going both Ghost AND Clean Hands then one is going to interfere with the other.

I don't see why. You can still incapacitate them, after all.

I had a lot of fun ghosting through the game, never being seen. It's not as visceral as exploding through guard after guard (which I also did), but it was still quite the power trip. Just more sedate.

Yeah, ghosting is the ideal, but I'll bet I won't be able to pull it off for the whole game—not the first time, anyway. Non-lethal and un-runed are my goals. Like PuceMoose said a long time ago:

Puce Moose wrote:
This game is so weird. I'm an assassin, but most of the achievements and rewards encourage you not to kill (like a thief), but the game hands me deadly weapons left and right. I was passing up bullets, grenades and bolts because I was full up.

I think that's a part of its appeal; it gives you the tools/wherewithal to be an absolute BOSS; and then dares you not to be one.

As for ghosting, what I thought was pretty amazing about the Overseer level is how small it is. Of course it's really dense, so that I can play for two hours, explore so much, and then find myself right back at the beginning—and then zip back to furthest point I got to, because now I knew the area so well.

Once I got to Holger Square, I could have finished the level in minutes, not hours: it was elementary to mantle and blink my way up to the ledge around the Overseer building, and then the meeting room was right there. Even a little farther around the ledge leads right to the Archive and Interrogation Room.

Of course I only knew that because I already played through most of the level already. So a complete ghosting run seems a lot more reasonable once familiar with all the levels.

To me, the synergy seems to lie between high chaos and Mostly Flesh and Steel, and between magic and Ghost/Clean Hands side of the spectrum. Magic mostly serves to subvert and circumvent, while your steel mostly kills (in spectacular ways).

And, fortunately, the cleanup doesn't end up on your bill

Malor wrote:
And, fortunately, the cleanup doesn't end up on your bill

I dunno, I'd say at least some of the magic can very much be combat oriented. (Stop time with a gun or crossbow or even your sword if grouped up well is a little ridiculous.) More so when you get into like the windblast to disorient while fighting and the rat plague (can those rats attack you by the way? Been meaning to try it out, but haven't yet). Trying to think of more as I seem to remember other abilities seeming useless to me as a stealther character (health, the adrenaline frenzy, etc...) but not off the top of my head.

Ok, I'm confused, I was meaning that you didn't have to pay the cleaning bill for all the blood you spilled. I'm not sure how we got from that comment to magic being combat-oriented?