Overlord 2

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I agree with Yahtzee to a point, but where I disagree most is about caring. I think there's more than one type of person with different levels of emotions. The more emotional someone is, the more emotion they bring to the game, from the very beginning. Where some need to be motivated to care, others, like myself, already do. Course this is one reason I can get bored with a game fairly quickly when they don't meet up to my emotional expectations. Love the carrot and stick analogy. Most games these days just give me stick.

ElArabDeMagnifico:

Virgil:

NoMoreSanity:
Is this a new feature here?

It's a new weekly feature. Every Friday.

This isn't replacing Shamus Young's "experienced points" is it?

-or is that even on a Friday in the first place?

Nope, there will be a new Experienced Points later today, same time as normal.

HardRockSamurai:
Yahtzee's biggest mistake was assuming that the game is trying to make us care; it doesn't, and it shouldn't. What it does do is establish a role, a filled niche for us to tamper with. We're not called the players for nothing you know?

I don't think that's the point of his complaint. I believe he's referring to the game adding "caring" details to the story/ gameplay, but not giving any reason or benefit for actualy doing the caring. Basicly, the game would be/ feel the exact same without those features.

Good, I found this to be a worthwhile read, look forwrad to seeing more of these.

Also, there are at least two spoiler violations in this here topic! Can you spot them? Unless you haven't finished Mass Effect or Half-Life 2: Episode 2, in which case you won't want to.

bodyklok:
Extra punctuation? Sorry Yahtzee, I like you and all. But, I'm not really the reading type. Maybe if you put it all in a short video with animations and dick jokes I'd look at it, but for now...

You don't have to read it, he already makes videos, why does this need to be video based also?

I'm sorry but I strongly disagree since I don't even think Overlord is trying to make you care, Fable sure, but not Overlord. The point of Overlord's style was to satire what Fable does. The main reason I'd resurrect a certain minion is they gathered a good amount of loot and is stronger than the average minion, thus saving them is a big help.

Its strange Yahtzee is focusing so much on this game. An dutch game with a cult following is hardly something holding back the game's industry.

Quadtrix:
I'm hoping since the Prototype vs. InFamous challenge, developers are taking a close look at Yahtzee's complaints and making a mental note of them for their future titles.

You do know Yahtzee is one of the least serious reviewers out there? I know he makes some very valid points on a lot of games but its more about comedy then serious criticizing.

This written series on the other hand, well we will just have to wait and see.

I have to agree with the lack of attachment to your wife in fable 2, which also ties into the ending. The main problem was that, at least when I played it, the entire land of Fable wanted to marry me within an hour or two of gameplay (basically because I was rich), which meant you never really formed an attachment to your spouse. I did have a vague sense of fondness for one of them, but then I had to marry someone else to complete a quest, and they bumped into each other and left me.

Virgil:

NoMoreSanity:
Is this a new feature here?

It's a new weekly feature. Every Friday.

Hooray!

That was a fairly enteraining read. Most of the articles I cant be bothered to read past the first page due to their unrelenting seriousness, unless its a subject that interests me.

Quick side note to, in the first Overlord you could choose your wife... I don't think Yahtzee has played that one.

Overlord is supposed to be a fun game with silly black humor, its not trying to invoke deep or loving emotions like he seems to be painting it as but saying its not.

I enjoy your videos and agree with some of the said games here, Fable doesn't make me care when its trying to but Overlord ISN'T.

EDIT: And I just know many are going to agree blindly even if they haven't played it.

Virgil:

NoMoreSanity:
Is this a new feature here?

It's a new weekly feature. Every Friday.

really or are you just screwing with us?

Edit : Still Im sticking with my earlier point that he should start figuring out that he's reviewing certain games for the wrong platforms and yes I understand that they are on those platforms too and not just for the one .... But still it messes up the reviews if that's the only thing he goes on about

It's great to see more of your writing here, Yahtzee, especially since it's relevant to games (your "Kick Arse" essays and others are pretty awesome though).

Virgil:

NoMoreSanity:
Is this a new feature here?

It's a new weekly feature. Every Friday.

Great now we've got two reviews on Fridays :D More ZP this'll be great

Very nice. It was refreshing to read a more constructive tone from Yahtzee. Can't wait for the next one!

squid5580:
I haven't beaten Overlord 2 yet. I am working on it and am quite far in it but so far I have not felt motivated by some sense of world domination. Sure Gnarl seems to want me to as he whispers in my ear but my motivation this far has been a simple but effective one: REVENGE. Without revealing too much the first few minutes past the tutorial were all the motivation I need to do what I have been doing.

*snip*

Also I think there is a difference between a character you assume the role of and a character you care about. The Overlord and Isaac are characters you are supposed to see thier world through. Where a character like Shepard you see from the outside.

And this has nothing to do with what perspective the game is actually in (first or third). I don't see any difference between the Overlord and Gordon Freeman.

Another reason I think Overlord II fails to interest me is because at times I think it's trying to be humourous and it just flops.
Sure the minions have a bit of interesting character to them, but there are many opportunities
for a twisted sense of humour that would be been quite beneficial.

Half-Life 2 does a much better job at characterizing and making us empathize with the characters.
That's one of the reasons Fable felt quite unsatisfying when dealing with the NPC's...
The NPC characters in Fable where uninteresting flat characters with that strange hive-mind reactions to your poses or actions.
When the main character of a game is a voiceless person, it's the interactions with the other
characters that becomes very important for generating empathy or interest in the game.

If the only reason for a player to do something like having two wives in Fable II is for an achievement.
Then really, why bother?...
Then it just feels like something that the developers tacked-on, they didn't spend enough time developing that aspect
or creating motivation for the player.
There needs to be an actual reward for doing something like that or it needs to help a character that you actually empathize with.
People need to feel involved with the characters and the story...shallow / broken side quests break the immersion factor of a game.

I dunno. I understand what he is saying, but at the same time, I'm beginning to think that a lot of this is based upon personal expectations. Dead Space is a perfect example: Yahtzee complains that the big 'reveal' moment is "about as emotive as using subtitles", but at the same time, I didn't see any particular level of emotional depth to the main character in the original Half-Life, does that make it a bad game? Or have those people who value that sort of thing just come to expect it everywhere because of games like Half-Life 2? In that light, I think the absence of an emotional investment is entirely based upon the preference of the player. I still think Dead Space was brilliant, and was probably my favorite game of '08, in part because it was among the best implementations of the Hollywood Big Budget Action Flick motif that I've seen yet. Of course, I'm the guy who got irritated with the Newt-as-a-surrogate-daughter-for-Ripley shit in Aliens. I spent that entire time thinking "just shut up and shoot some fucking xenos!"

Again, that's me. Dead Space created just enough of a connection to help further the atmosphere, and didn't waste my time by trying to expound upon it simply to manipulate my emotions. Yahtzee (and Pedro and others, obviously), feel that the connection needs to be deeper, so they don't like the game-- which is fine, but I don't think that you can legitimately completely disparage a game for it... if nothing else, because that is your taste. Can you honestly say that the game is absolutely not worth playing because of that?

Look at it this way:
Objective:
Poor/unresponsive controls- that affects everyone who plays the game.
Terrible graphics/sound- ditto
Repetitive combat mechanics- same
Crappy camera- as above
(etc.)

Subjective:
Didn't connect with the main character- pretty sure not everyone is going to agree there.
Moral 'choice' system is bogus (basically binary)- a lot of folks probably don't care
Didn't find myself 'invested' in the plot - see above
(etc)

Yes, there is a lot of gray area there, and of course, something subjective might become objective when it's promoted as a selling point of the game (Fable's 'moral choice' system becomes hugely relevant because that was supposedly the whole fucking point). But I'm sure you get my drift.

Since I first started watching ZP, in the back of my head, I've always had that filter seperating his objective observations from his subjective ones; since I don't know Yahtzee personally, I take all his subjective observations with a grain of salt, unless past experience has demonstrated that we tend to have the same attitude about something. (JRPGs, for example)

I appreciate the opportunity that Extra Punctuation seems like it will provide: the ability for Yahtzee to speak about points he makes in his reviews which deserve elaboration, but the format of ZP prevents it. I still may or may not agree with him, however.

Absoloute genius, proving many points and maintaining your throne lol

MattKirby:
Absoloute genius, proving many points and maintaining your throne lol

Throne of game review satire but you can't prove an opinion.

Because of the last comment Yahtzee made, I feel sorry for him and his social life.

ROFLMAO at the Cum Shot joke!

Good to see Yahtzee moving into new territory. Oh, and a good article too. I look forward to reading this in the future.

Wow! Well I was in complete agreement with the carrot and the stick anology till I remembered GTA4. GTA was may favorite franchise and 4 is the only one, of the 3D bunch, I haven't finished and can't get myself to pick back up. I simply refuse to take my ganja smok'n, gangsta bitch homie bowling one more time cause he feels we aren't spending enough time together. Of course, if I don't, I can't have access to the guns I want. So fuck him. Nice carrot, but I'm tired of having to stroke his stick for access to it.

Honestly, each game simply needs to be judged on it's own. What may work for one, might not work for another.

PM games are always (ALWAYS!) full of unfleshed potential everywhere you look. While I've enjoyed most of them at points I'm always left with bluballs over what could have been.

The bottom line is that when games get repititious, boring or tedius we, as players, need a damn good reward to justify the time. Balance makes good games. The Carrot/stick formula is not necessarily needed.

IceStar100:
I think he has a point. Don't tell us to care make us care. Look at Mass Effect.

Spoilers

LMAO at players starving their wives and kids in Fable 2 then eating food in front of them. I wonder if its possible to do that to Milo when he comes out? I wish I had thought to do that, because being a dick in a videogame is really quite fun. I remeber slowly stalking random pedestrians in GTA IV then running them over, then waiting for them to get back up before running them over again.

An enjoyable read Mr Croshaw. Although now you mention it, "Hit me with your best shot" could indeed be a song about cumshots.

Kstreitenfeld:

bodyklok:
Extra punctuation? Sorry Yahtzee, I like you and all. But, I'm not really the reading type. Maybe if you put it all in a short video with animations and dick jokes I'd look at it, but for now...

You don't have to read it, he already makes videos, why does this need to be video based also?

I think Bodyklok's post should have ended

/sarcasm

That clear things up for you?

OT: I really liked reading this; I like that Yahtzee will admit when he has changed his mind about a game he played earlier, of course it is much funnier to be continually scathing of every aspect of a game, but it takes much bigger critical balls to turn up the next week as say 'I was wrong about X' than just to let it pass with the rest of the proverbial poop he flings.

I don't know if the makers of Overlord II really expected people to care. The Fable game writer however did and I agree with the point that if we are supposed to care, the game developers really shouldn't take it for granted.

From what I've observed, how much real life emotion that caries over from real life into the game varies from player to player and it varies quite a lot. It becomes very obvious when half the posters consider scene X touching while others found it dull. It's not only how much of the emotion player carries over to the game that varies, which situations the player cares about also varies. Some are easily offended when children are killed, even if the scene is poorly written and the children didn't even exist prior to that scene. Some are big fans off love stories and easily get emotional over fictional love troubles. Again, you can often see how that manifests itself in message board discussions.

I can't really agree that there has to be a carrot. When it comes to characters, how much I care about them depends how effective the game is a writing them as living people rather than as plot devices. What gameplay benefits they grant doesn't matter the slightest. Characters that are poorly written, but gives me great gameplay benefits will just make me care about the gameplay benefits, not the characters themselves.

All in all, I guess I agree about half of the article.

he makes a valid point

Yahtzee you rock man! Your the best reviewer I have ever heard of. And your incredibly funny! Keep going man.

BolognaBaloney:
Good points, please do us a favor and follow Peter Molyneaux around slapping the back of his head whenever he starts to think about fable 3.

or better give him a note pad of a good game and pray to every god ever thought off he doesnt f**k it up

Without the fast talking British accent the jokes fall flat. Sorry.

Lt exist a lot true things in what he said.

I'm sorry i mean 'it'.

I don't normally comment on ZP stuff (although I do watch it religiously), but if you see this yahtzee, do this some more. Your writing is even better then some of your ZP work, so yeah, more Extra Punctuation would be awesome, if you can find the time to add to your ZP work.

megalomania:

Kstreitenfeld:

bodyklok:
Extra punctuation? Sorry Yahtzee, I like you and all. But, I'm not really the reading type. Maybe if you put it all in a short video with animations and dick jokes I'd look at it, but for now...

You don't have to read it, he already makes videos, why does this need to be video based also?

I think Bodyklok's post should have ended

/sarcasm

That clear things up for you?

OT: I really liked reading this; I like that Yahtzee will admit when he has changed his mind about a game he played earlier, of course it is much funnier to be continually scathing of every aspect of a game, but it takes much bigger critical balls to turn up the next week as say 'I was wrong about X' than just to let it pass with the rest of the proverbial poop he flings.

How do you know he was being sarcastic? Do you read minds or something? You honestly give people in general to much credit to just assume he was being sarcastic.

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