Bioshock Infinite Catch-All

1Dgaf wrote:

When I heard about MP being possible, I sent Levine a tweets asking them to make all plasmids available from the beginning. I got the impression there wasn't much of a BS2 MP community, which, presumably, made it hard to unlock things.

If it's traditional MP, I agree. Although, the thing I heard
most from players of BS2 MP was their love of the leveling progression.

Something I remember from BI previews was that I got the impression tonics (or whatever the equivalent to plasmids) are a relatively short-term thing now, not something you find/buy and it's yours for the rest of the game.

So I guess you would pick up a tonic and it would have a limited number of charges or time limit, and that would also eliminate the alternate ammo system (eve from Bioshock). In multiplayer tonics wouldn't be something you unlock and make yourself a loadout for a match, but a pickup in the world like ammo or another weapon (weren't weapons part of the loadout in BS2 MP?).

I think they're called Vigors, and they do apparently have charges. One thing I was wondering is if some of them would be free, because really basic stuff like telekinesis of small to medium objects doesn't seem like it should need charges. I could see doing that for picking up something huge, but it seems like the utility nature of basic TK doesn't apply well to a charge mechanic.

The way they handled that in Bioshock 1 and 2 was that pulling an item to you and either picking it up or dropping it was free, but it cost Eve to throw things.

(The reason I don't think charges are good here, if I wasn't clear enough, is because you want to do this a LOT, so you'd need to be finding and picking up so many charges that it would be very distracting.)

My first impression of a limited TK vigor would be that you are removing the player's freedom of choice in advancing through certain areas-- to limit TK means that you'd have to explicitly design sections of levels to utilize TK, then drop a few TK vigors around to ensure the player can make it through the section without running out. It creates a much more linear experience, I think, than what BS1 had set up (minus the overall twist, etc etc).

Levelling progression that is reliant on other players only works if there's a sufficiently large player base and XP requirements that take that into account. IIRC we didn't even have access to all the plasmids in a private match in BS2. Dumb.

Also remember that in SP you've got Elizabeth to do her thing, presumably either as an option or as a fallback if the player uses up all the 'special ammo' around locally. Any multiplayer would be quite different, although I guess it depends whether you're making a load of classic competitive modes or something coop where you can bend the rules a bit.

For what it's worth, it does seem like trying to fit in a persistent levelling system into a game like Bioshock multiplayer does cause more trouble than it's worth. At least in games like BF3 and ME3 you could have decent weapons to not feel completely useless at level 1.

cyrax wrote:

If it's traditional MP, I agree. Although, the thing I heard
most from players of BS2 MP was their love of the leveling progression.

I played a fair amount of the multiplayer in Bioshock 2, and the leveling progression was not a big draw for me. Multiplayer gets more fun as you unlock more stuff, but that doesn't mean it's always a fun process to unlock things.

The problem with Bioshock 2's multiplayer is the same problem a lot of progressive unlock systems have: poor balance between the higher and lower levels. As near as I can figure, you can weight a system like that two ways: toward fairness, which lowers the reward for unlocking a new tier; or toward more power gained per level, which makes the game less fair. Bioshock 2 took the latter path, which meant that for the first couple levels, you're more of a target than a participant.

However, once you start unlocking abilities, it gets more fun, and the various powers make combat more interesting than a straight-ahead shooter. It's also fun to turn into a Big Daddy.

My favorite thing about Bioshock 2's multiplayer, though, were the trials. Basically, they were mini-achievements granted for doing various things: getting a couple consecutive headshots on a Big Daddy with the pistol, zapping fifty enemies with electrobolt, etc. They gave generous experience rewards for completing, and they encouraged you to try out a variety of weapons and plasmids. If they had built the unlocking system around trials instead of raw experience, I think it could have been a much more interesting system.

TheGameguru wrote:

Why justify it at all? Why are we owed games to be released in some previously announced time frame?

Just a quick comment on this. Companies use release dates to build hype and to have gamers plan their lives and money around release events. Even though they aren't paying the customer they are attempting to get the customer emotionally involved in the release of a game. When that is changed, the customer becomes disappointed. This is no different then anything else a person gets emotionally invested in. Are we really owed the game on a certain date? No, but the company does its best to make us expect it on that date.

If you don't want this to happen, companies need to do a better job of balancing hype and time before a release.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

Bioshock 2 took the latter path, which meant that for the first couple levels, you're more of a target than a participant.

I would never intentionally play a game like that, no matter how quickly you leave target status. That is the opposite of fun.

karmajay wrote:

and to have gamers plan their lives and money around release events.

Really? Perhaps if they moved the date at the 11th hour, but I guess I don't put as much emphasis on games as others. It's not something like taking a big holiday, getting married or a major investment like a house or car. It's a bit of media/software that is for entertainment purposes, and with BI being singleplayer you can even play it when you want, rather than the other way around. If it was multiplayer I could partially understand trying to shepherd a few friends to play together for an optimal experience, but even that's not a huge thing.

being Spider-Man Studio derived earphones you'll find that you become amplified level Dre Facility Defeats Earbuds, blog is going dre beats wireless to furnish additional information to beats by dre Official authentic sales assist you to make your mind up5mm Red Beats By Dr. Dre Studio sound

youbing wrote:

spam

Nice try, Ken.

I love schizophrenic infomercials

HOLY CRAP SPIDERMAN IS GOING TO BE IN BIOSHOCK INFINITE?!

Calling it now! Game of 2013! Hell yeah!

Given what they're doing with the rails around their levels, I can't imagine it being too difficult to make a spiderman mod for BI actually. A grapple-gun would be an interesting twist on the gameplay too.

Spider-man confirmed in BI!

Scratched wrote:

Given what they're doing with the rails around their levels, I can't imagine it being too difficult to make a spiderman mod for BI actually. A grapple-gun would be an interesting twist on the gameplay too.

Spider's Serum tonic?

Well, you're already swinging between buildings, so it isn't really a stretch.

karmajay wrote:
TheGameguru wrote:

Why justify it at all? Why are we owed games to be released in some previously announced time frame?

Just a quick comment on this. Companies use release dates to build hype and to have gamers plan their lives and money around release events. Even though they aren't paying the customer they are attempting to get the customer emotionally involved in the release of a game. When that is changed, the customer becomes disappointed. This is no different then anything else a person gets emotionally invested in. Are we really owed the game on a certain date? No, but the company does its best to make us expect it on that date.

If you don't want this to happen, companies need to do a better job of balancing hype and time before a release.

I (surprisingly) completely agreed with Guru until reading this, excellent point. The release of info, release date, and teasers are all to titillate with a payoff on a given date. If you're lucky, you're not caught into this trap. If you do find yourself chugging along with an increased momentum then the marketing team has you right where they want you. Until they push back the release date, that is.

It would be too coy a game for a publisher (or marketing firm, etc) to build consumer expectation in this way and then ask why they should have to justify anything when they pull away at the last moment.

For those who missed it, idlethumbs did a playthrough of the original Bioshock with one of the level designers who worked on the game, JP LeBreton. Watching this whet my appetite for Bioshock Infinite.

Links:
Part 1: Beginning of the game, but they encounter some lag so the video gets a bit choppy (starts around the 5m30s mark).
Part 2: Continuing from Part 1, with a playthrough of the medical center.
Part 3: Jump to Arcadia, the level that JP was lead on design.

No idea if the losses are as significant to the development as is anticipated in this article, still interesting: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news...

So anyone else doesn't give them clicks, I quoted the exaggerated, and reaching, pile of crap that is that mass of letters.

The game is still planned for February 2013, but today we learned two top members of the design team have left the studio. Tim Gerritsen, director of product development, and Nate Wells, the art director responsible for the look of the Big Daddies, are no longer employed at Irrational Games, placing the development of BioShock Infinite in danger.

We learned of Wells' and Gerriten's departures through some investigating into their social networks, not through any official announcement. According to Gamasutra, Wells updated his Twitter bio to read "New Job ... Details to follow" earlier today, but has since revised it to be blank. Gerritsen's LinkedIn page notes that his employment at Irrational Games ended in August 2012. Well's LinkedIn page says that his Irrational Games tenure is in the past.

There's been no official word on whether these departures will affect the release date for BioShock Infinite, but it certainly can't be good news.

Nothing to see here, move along.

Yeah, that's a pretty big "OH NOEZ IN DANGER!", which...no, I'm sorry, losing two top members of the team this late in development (and let's face it, it's late enough not to matter as much considering their roles) isn't putting the game in danger.

I don't know why that writer interpreted it as such.

ccesarano wrote:

Yeah, that's a pretty big "OH NOEZ IN DANGER!", which...no, I'm sorry, losing two top members of the team this late in development (and let's face it, it's late enough not to matter as much considering their roles) isn't putting the game in danger.

I don't know why that writer interpreted it as such.

My thought would be they are winding down development and the members of the team were probably mostly done what they needed to but who knows. I don't think it's necessarily something to worry about.

I just get excited whenever this thread pops back to the top. I always think "HOLY CRAP early release for Goodjers, yeeaaahhhhh!", while hoping for King K to drop some spicy nuggets on us for being such all-around wonderful people.

Bioshock is likely deep into the spit and polish phase at this point. I don't think major forces in game design are hugely necessary. Just guessing, mind you.

The skepticism on the Chicken Little tone matches my thoughts, but I posted it as A) I trust the Escapist (maybe not in terms of contract negotiation but that's not what we're talking about) and B) I don't have that much overview in the scope and scale of these two roles this late in the game.

Kotaku also posting 'rumors'

http://kotaku.com/5933119/bioshock-i...

Apparently they've been 'losing' alot of folks from the team for the past year:

Art director Nate Wells and director of product development Tim Gerritsen, two key senior members of the creative team, are the latest in a string of staffers to depart Irrational over the past 18 months. Other departures include design director Jeff McGann, producer Joe Faulstick, principal systems designer Ken Strickland, senior level designer Steve Gaynor, and systems designer Tynan Sylvester, among others. Coupled with the departure of Wells, who has been a part of Irrational for more than a decade, and Gerritsen, it seems that a significant chunk of the core Infinite team is no longer working on the game.

And Rod Fergusson has left Epic for Irrational:

https://twitter.com/GearsViking/stat...

GearsViking wrote:

Yes it's true, I'm leaving my family at Epic to join my new family at Irrational in Boston starting tomorrow.

Again, probably nothing to be concerned about, but time will tell.

Wasn't Gaynor over at 2K Marin? They're probably confusing him with Chris Remo who was at Irrational for a little while.

I also saw Kotaku was running some news about a couple of failed multiplayer prototypes that were attempted for the game. Which sounds like a non-story to me, and honestly I doubt they'll lose any sales if they actually dropped multiplayer from the game.

EDIT:

Ken tweeted the following:

Scott Sinclair, art director of Bio1, back in the art director's chair for Infinite to bring it home. Can't wait to show you what's cooking.

So maybe this is just the byproduct of spit n' polish time as Certis said?

Gaynor was at 2K but then went to Irrational. He left Irrational about the same time Remo did so he could return to Portland and start working on Gone Home.