Zero Punctuation: Mass Effect 2

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Axolotl:

BlueInkAlchemist:

image Professional troll.

Oh I get it now, since I have a different opinion from yours I must be a troll.

Well no, I'm not trolling Bioware games are not well written (at least none of the ones I've have been), they're badly written especially when compared to other RPGs.

Nah, I just think you'd look snappy in a suit.

Having seen more of your posts, I don't think you're ENTIRELY trollish, but you do seem to delight in going right for the sarcastic undercutting castrating counterpoint. You apply a good amount of reducto ad absurdum to many of the 'arguments' made around here but to many that can come across as trolling.

Anyway, clarification of communication aside, I'm curious as to which current RPG has writing and character development that exceeds that of this game or Dragon Age Origins. Yes, some of BioWare's constructs tend to be a bit on the formulaic side, but if a formula works you don't necessarily need to reinvent it every time you head into your design meeting.

Your mileage may vary, of course.

Sounds like he actually liked this one. lol

SextusMaximus:

Suskie:
Wow, people really refuse to give resource mining a break, don't they? Not that I'm surprised Yahtzee would spend 80% of the review complaining about something you can just skip altogether. The game must've been pretty awesome if that's the best he's got! </fanboy rant>

In all seriousness, solid video as always. A little disappointed he didn't like it more, but obviously I can't say I'm surprised. I do like how he tried to make the fact that BioWare are known for good writing sound like a negative (and failed miserably).

So I'm taking it your a ME2 fan, then? The reason he has to say those things is because of his FANTASTIC Psychonauts review, which half the site apparently hated because he stated his honest to god opinion about it.

So don't make a remark about him which is UNJUSTIFIED.

Christ, man, I'm not. But like I said to someone else, he's nitpicked like this before and then gone on to acknowledge that he really enjoyed the game in question (again, check his CoD4 and Infamous reviews). And if he really didn't like the game that much, he didn't make a strong case for it.

brilliant spot on review, i love hearing you insult every game i own. that jet pack idea is pretty good. i feel the same about the adventuring just being small linear hallways where you shoot either blue suns, eclipse or blood pack mercenaries then go back to talking to your whinny crew

Yahtzee sort of touched on one of the things I don't like about role-playing in ME2. If you actually play the game making all the decisions and saying all the things you would in real life (as you expect would be the point of games like this), you get punished at the end of the game by being somewhat gimped in conversations and your options to affect the story. It's almost as if the game is designed to be played either completely Paragon or completely Renegade, with little real incentive for people to play as themselves.

For example, it isn't, "Hmm, I'm going to spare this guy because he didn't do anything wrong"; it's, "Hmm, I'm going to kill this guy because I need more Renegade points to convince Miranda to get over that stupid argument she had with Jack."

It's supposedly "an option" to be neutral, but Paragon and Renegade are really the only big options there are (there is no colorful Neutral dialogue to choose from, for instance), so it again comes down to being either a hippy wonderboy or a racist prick with a sweltering ego.

By the way, anybody else think Commander Shepard immediately became creepy whenever he started hitting on people? The combination of the slight uncanny valley and the strange seductive lines made me feel a little ashamed to be playing him.

"Come on, Tali. You know you want this."

Ahh Mass Effect. I read an article over on Gamasutra about how they were making it "critic proof", which was pretty hilarious.

It's almost as if the writing staff and the design staff didn't really communicate at all, which is probably fairly close to the mark.

This review was pretty interesting; I hadn't played the first Mass Effect outside of a friend's house once, and it wasn't really my cup of tea.

In other news, who is the random face that Yahtzee uses in most/all of his reviews? I've been wondering about that for quite a while~

I see Gobblecoque returned.

"Ban the human reproductive system!"
"Scourge my evil ball sack"

Classics!

I LOVED the vehicle sections, I always did. They were EASILY my favourite non-plot parts of the game. I don't mind that they were removed in favour of the shuttle though.

I like how Yahtzee considered the whole point of the game banging Miranda, it was pretty much the same for me.

Xanyr:
Good writing? So did you miss the humongous plot holes and failed characterization of the Reapers?

How do you characterize the Reapers? They're just a rip from Cthulu anyway. Advanced and ancient to the point of unknowabillity sort of rules out characterization.

wolves with lasers!! THAT'S what the movie Frozen was missing!

It was pretty funny, but I really want to see Yahtzee rip apart Dante's Inferno!

jthm:

Xanyr:
Good writing? So did you miss the humongous plot holes and failed characterization of the Reapers?

How do you characterize the Reapers? They're just a rip from Cthulu anyway. Advanced and ancient to the point of unknowabillity sort of rules out characterization.

Indeedie. Sadly, some people seem to think "Plot holes and failed characterisation" is what to call it when they don't like a story.

Xanyr:
Good writing? So did you miss the humongous plot holes and failed characterization of the Reapers?

I keep hearing about these "humongous plot holes," but I have yet to hear one decent example. Anything you want to know about the story or subsequent character stories between ME1 and ME2 is available in the game if you bother to ask the correct questions/choose the right dialogue options.

This the first ZP episode that made me laugh in a long while, particularly the part about Dirty Harry and Captain Picard.

Also, has anyone heard of the anime/manga One Piece? Well in one of the recent chapters/episodes, there WERE wolves that shot lasers from their mouthes!

Xzi:

Xanyr:
Good writing? So did you miss the humongous plot holes and failed characterization of the Reapers?

I keep hearing about these "humongous plot holes," but I have yet to hear one decent example. Anything you want to know about the story or subsequent character stories between ME1 and ME2 is available in the game if you bother to ask the correct questions/choose the right dialogue options.

Agreed - Or the few times someone has said what they think is a plot hole, its been explainable within 2 minutes to them. Not that they ever believe it. You'd think people would be a tad more open minded in a universe full of FTL drives and 'Element zero', but apparently not, heh.

BlueInkAlchemist:
Anyway, clarification of communication aside, I'm curious as to which current RPG has writing and character development that exceeds that of this game or Dragon Age Origins. Yes, some of BioWare's constructs tend to be a bit on the formulaic side, but if a formula works you don't necessarily need to reinvent it every time you head into your design meeting.

There's not much current gen stuff admittidly but Troika and Black Isle games put Bioware to shame espcially Planescape and Bloodlines.

The key problem I have with Bioware's dialog is that not only does the player have little control over a conversation but everything is hideously verbose. I'm reminded of second rate fantasy novels that dom their best to emulate LotR but just fall short, and given where Bioware started I strongly suspect that those sort of books are the root of Bioware's style.

hu i though hed like the combat

I kinda like the Mako parts in the first one, am yet to play Mass Effect 2 but I'm sure I'll enjoy it.

Xanyr:
Good writing? So did you miss the humongous plot holes and failed characterization of the Reapers?

/facepalam play the game before commenting

Yes you are the saviour of the universe. Of games that is.

Mass Effect 2 is a total beauty that rarely comes around. I truly fell for the Tali romance (probably because she didn't have off-putting, badly decided reaction faces) i found the story gripping, the gameplay great and the upgrades a breath of fresh air.

THEN the mining hit. Oh, the mining. Who though this would be a good idea for gamers, a legion of people whose definition largely stems from the constant stimulation argument.

In Mass Effect 3 they need to bring back planetary exploring but not make it shit. Is that so hard? KotOR did it (kind of). Its simple. You land on an interesting and varied alien world and have fun. You now have the interesting and varied down and even a bit of the fun but not the MASS Effect. It's more Empty Effect which at least has the boon of alliteration.

Axolotl:
[quote="BlueInkAlchemist" post="6.175845.5005039"]There's not much current gen stuff admittidly but Troika and Black Isle games put Bioware to shame espcially Planescape and Bloodlines.

The key problem I have with Bioware's dialog is that not only does the player have little control over a conversation but everything is hideously verbose. I'm reminded of second rate fantasy novels that dom their best to emulate LotR but just fall short, and given where Bioware started I strongly suspect that those sort of books are the root of Bioware's style.

Planescape I will give you and Black Isle died of mismanagement and poor followups.

But Troika? I had Arcanum and Bloodlines. Both were very flawed pieces that failed to catch on because they had issues that were serious enough to kill being able to really play the game. The writing was okay but if it had been seriously that good it would have caught on. They were ahead of their time considering that the settings were Steampunk and Vampires.

bAHAHAHAHAHa ROLFCOPTER!!!! i thought it was just me that hated the bloody vehicles in the first one but glad yahtzee agrees we think alike but that was his funniest video me thinks very amusing

You know, our corporation in EvE Online currently has openings in the space surveying department. If any ME2 players would like to apply, we would be happy to review your application.

Yes, the scanning and probing for resources is IMMEDIATELY tedious.

I'm the captian! What do I have this big crew for if I have to sit at the console myself and drag a scanner over a planet?

I should be captain Kirk 'probing' alien hotties while the red-shirts probe the planets!

Why can't I set up mining facilities or something? It's like I'm playing a game of a galactic hero playing EVE between missions

Xzi:

Xanyr:
Good writing? So did you miss the humongous plot holes and failed characterization of the Reapers?

I keep hearing about these "humongous plot holes," but I have yet to hear one decent example. Anything you want to know about the story or subsequent character stories between ME1 and ME2 is available in the game if you bother to ask the correct questions/choose the right dialogue options.

I haven't quite finished the first game (I know I'm a bit late but I'm finally playing it) but I've just left Virmire and you talk to Soverign in that part, I got the gist of the Reapers there, so it would make sense if they don't exposit about them in the second game.

Great review as always. Can anyone tell me how the resources effect the end of the game without spoilers or is it tied into the plot? I didn't finish the game when I rented it but I got to the "suicide mission," and I've been trying to figure out why 3 characters died right away despite me completing everyone's side missions that made them "loyal." If it spoils things nevermind, I'll find out next time I play.

Also Yahtzee must've gotten lucky as far as the ally AIs, because they still cause problems for me. They still perform better than in ME1, meaning they only shoot me in the back occasionally and use their powers at times that make more sense, but I still ran into some major spots of trouble. Occasionally the AI characters will retreat back to your position if they are in trouble and in front of you, but if they are about to die and you are too and the biotic Turtle monster enemy is smart enough to walk around the tiny box you are now both hiding behind it just kills you both, thanks a bunch Jack. Ordering them to use powers from cover can get annoying if they start targeting the wall you are sitting on because you bumped the control stick down to aim at guys on the field below you. And in one instance I actually cleared an entire floor before realizing that both my allies were still stuck around the corner of the bottom of the stairs I entered the room from, so clearly they hadn't been helping me much but it was still annoying knowing they could've been there to divide the enemy's attention, and maybe fire the occasional bullet or power that the menu will tell me is useless against that specific enemy, not that the AI cares.

Nice Monty Python reference

WOAH! Epic burn at the beginning. 0_o

Yeah, Bioware needs to really work on their facial animations.

lead sharp:

MiracleOfSound:
I never really get why Yahtzee complains about games being too easy when there are multiple difficulty settings.

He should try not issuing commands to the AI on Insanity and see how far he gets...

Someone may have already said this but I'm fucked if I'm reading 191 posts after a 12 hour shift to find out but...

He's only got a few days to review the game, I'm fairly confident that 'easy' is a setting that will allow him to cut a swathe through the story fastest to cover as much game as possible.

In that case he shouldn't say "the game is too easy" if all he's able to do to stay on track is play on easy. I perfectly understand that he's on a schedule and thus needs to compromise difficulty levels in order to play through a game but at the same time if he does that he can't really turn around and say "too easy" because of it. Of course it's going to be too easy, you were playing on easy.

Then again maybe I just suck because I died a good number of times on Normal difficulty.

blalien:
I want to know who Yahtzee sexed! I hope it's Tali.

Good vid as always, he seemed to like this one. Good writing is also a big ++ in my book, I love a good story in games.

AceDiamond:

lead sharp:

MiracleOfSound:
I never really get why Yahtzee complains about games being too easy when there are multiple difficulty settings.

He should try not issuing commands to the AI on Insanity and see how far he gets...

Someone may have already said this but I'm fucked if I'm reading 191 posts after a 12 hour shift to find out but...

He's only got a few days to review the game, I'm fairly confident that 'easy' is a setting that will allow him to cut a swathe through the story fastest to cover as much game as possible.

In that case he shouldn't say "the game is too easy" if all he's able to do to stay on track is play on easy. I perfectly understand that he's on a schedule and thus needs to compromise difficulty levels in order to play through a game but at the same time if he does that he can't really turn around and say "too easy" because of it. Of course it's going to be too easy, you were playing on easy.

Then again maybe I just suck because I died a good number of times on Normal difficulty.

Its Yahtzee's game, he can play it however he wants. You should know that, yahtzee is an entertainer and the main reason he rants is because its more entertaining. He's criticism should be taken with a grain of salt because he has stretched small gameplay flaws in games he actually likes because, well talking about how good a game is BORING.

Anyways, i loved the review. Though we really dont need a square mile of bland terrain do we? I thought we got past this.

ian528:
Planescape I will give you and Black Isle died of mismanagement and poor followups.

Mismangement on Interplays side of things with them deciding that consoles were the way to go and cancelling Black Isle's 3 big projects in a row.

But Troika? I had Arcanum and Bloodlines. Both were very flawed pieces that failed to catch on because they had issues that were serious enough to kill being able to really play the game. The writing was okay but if it had been seriously that good it would have caught on. They were ahead of their time considering that the settings were Steampunk and Vampires.

Troika dies because of dickisness from Activision. And Bloodlines did catch on, it has a fan community that is still doing fan patches today. And whilst it had many issues writing quality was not one of them.

Financial success does not equal good writting and vice versa.

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