Stolen Pixels #204: Alpha Etiquette

Stolen Pixels #204: Alpha Etiquette

It's almost like nobody ever taught the Alpha Protocol spies any manners.

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The fact you could wait for 30 minutes without responding back gave Mass Effect it's charm. On youtube you have several popular spoofs. Alpha just failed to live up for me.

I have to admit, the whole, making you choose in a time limit thing is kinda annoying...Its one thing it could have learned from ME for sure

I actually like the sound of this. It means it's more like a real conversation, you don't have a planned tree ahead of time, you just make up the words based on your current emotion.

I guess that's just a bug of Alpha Protocol... Oh well, should wait for the patches.

Jaredin:
I have to admit, the whole, making you choose in a time limit thing is kinda annoying...Its one thing it could have learned from ME for sure

But that's the whole point.
You shouldn't feel relaxed and have an eternity making the right decisions.
It's a spy game, after all.

Straying Bullet:
The fact you could wait for 30 minutes without responding back gave Mass Effect it's charm. On youtube you have several popular spoofs. Alpha just failed to live up for me.

Can you provide a link please? I couldn't figure out which words I should use to find such a video.

Hahaha, great comic. I wonder if Captain Terrorist gets that a lot?

dochmbi:

Straying Bullet:
The fact you could wait for 30 minutes without responding back gave Mass Effect it's charm. On youtube you have several popular spoofs. Alpha just failed to live up for me.

Can you provide a link please? I couldn't figure out which words I should use to find such a video.

Seconded.

The writing in these very Dialogues make the game worthwhile for me. It's freakin' hilarious, and tends to be wonderfully over the top. Michael Thorton = King of Douchebags

Especially the "Suave" Options lead to many "I can't belive he/i just said that!" moments.

I can see the quite understandable relative realism angle here, but dammit, it sounds like too much stress and bother. In Mass Effect and its sequel, I spent up to five minutes agonising over some dialogue choices, wanting to make my attitude clear. Though those long pauses were often due, it must be admitted, to the fact that the wording of the options seems to suggest different intentions to me then the developers. "No! No! I didn't mean THAT! Bloody writers! Now I have to further break immersion and reload!"

I suppose a more reasonable solution to the problem would be to have the time limit, but have a little bit of subtext (or perhaps at the very least some hint of colour co-ordination?) beside each answer so your character doesn't end up saying the exact opposite of what you meant.

starlight2098:
I suppose a more reasonable solution to the problem would be to have the time limit, but have a little bit of subtext (or perhaps at the very least some hint of colour co-ordination?) beside each answer so your character doesn't end up saying the exact opposite of what you meant.

Left is "Suave", right is "Professional" and up is "Agressive". This is what it ALWAYS is. It takes a few lines (or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...) to work out what will work and what won't work on each character, and then it's just a case of choose if you want to piss off or befriend each character.

The idea that having thirty seconds to pick a dialogue option is "hard" or "stressful" is really, really sad for a subculture that prides itself on quick reflexes and above-average intelligence...

Chipperz:
The idea that having thirty seconds to pick a dialogue option is "hard" or "stressful" is really, really sad for a subculture that prides itself on quick reflexes and above-average intelligence...

Yeah, when we're being shot at. Interpersonal relationships is a whole different minefield.

:)

Gross XD

I honestly didn't realize you could "click" those, but I guess now that I think about it the mouse does come up during dialog... hmm. I always just used WASD to select whichever stance, works quicker.

As for the odd waiting, there were only a handful of dialogs where there's much of a pause at all before you respond, so most are just giving you the opportunity to change your mind at the last moment before the timer runs down. Unless you're fast forwarding, then you get big long pauses with no conversation.

Chipperz:

starlight2098:
I suppose a more reasonable solution to the problem would be to have the time limit, but have a little bit of subtext (or perhaps at the very least some hint of colour co-ordination?) beside each answer so your character doesn't end up saying the exact opposite of what you meant.

Left is "Suave", right is "Professional" and up is "Agressive". This is what it ALWAYS is. It takes a few lines (or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...) to work out what will work and what won't work on each character, and then it's just a case of choose if you want to piss off or befriend each character.

Don't forget that there's often down for "Recruit" (clueless tosser) and "Veteran" (arrogant fuckwit) options.

RhomCo:

Chipperz:

starlight2098:
I suppose a more reasonable solution to the problem would be to have the time limit, but have a little bit of subtext (or perhaps at the very least some hint of colour co-ordination?) beside each answer so your character doesn't end up saying the exact opposite of what you meant.

Left is "Suave", right is "Professional" and up is "Agressive". This is what it ALWAYS is. It takes a few lines (or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...) to work out what will work and what won't work on each character, and then it's just a case of choose if you want to piss off or befriend each character.

Don't forget that there's often down for "Recruit" (clueless tosser) and "Veteran" (arrogant fuckwit) options.

Down can also be kick in their teeth and piss down their throat on occasion as well.

Anyway, who in here noticed you could receive that disgusting eye as a trophy if you spared him?

Straying Bullet:
The fact you could wait for 30 minutes without responding back gave Mass Effect it's charm. On youtube you have several popular spoofs. Alpha just failed to live up for me.

No no no. The thing that gave Mass Effect its charm were these conversations:

NPC: Hello, Shepard, how can I help you?
Shepard: I'd like to ask you a few questions.
NPC: Certainly.
Shepard: I should go.
NPC: C'ya later.

The game that got its charm from waiting long periods before replying was KOTOR because your character would make these amusingly serious facial expressions while you delayed. (Though I dunno, maybe Shepard does that, too)

WhiteTigerShiro:

Straying Bullet:
The fact you could wait for 30 minutes without responding back gave Mass Effect it's charm. On youtube you have several popular spoofs. Alpha just failed to live up for me.

No no no. The thing that gave Mass Effect its charm were these conversations:

NPC: Hello, Shepard, how can I help you?
Shepard: I'd like to ask you a few questions.
NPC: Certainly.
Shepard: I should go.
NPC: C'ya later.

The game that got its charm from waiting long periods before replying was KOTOR because your character would make these amusingly serious facial expressions while you delayed. (Though I dunno, maybe Shepard does that, too)

Indeed. I also remember this:

Wrex: Shepard
Shephard : Wrex

It's epic in every way.

Straying Bullet:

WhiteTigerShiro:

Straying Bullet:
The fact you could wait for 30 minutes without responding back gave Mass Effect it's charm. On youtube you have several popular spoofs. Alpha just failed to live up for me.

No no no. The thing that gave Mass Effect its charm were these conversations:

NPC: Hello, Shepard, how can I help you?
Shepard: I'd like to ask you a few questions.
NPC: Certainly.
Shepard: I should go.
NPC: C'ya later.

The game that got its charm from waiting long periods before replying was KOTOR because your character would make these amusingly serious facial expressions while you delayed. (Though I dunno, maybe Shepard does that, too)

Indeed. I also remember this:

Wrex: Shepard
Shephard : Wrex

It's epic in every way.

I cried when it didn't work with grunt. :(

I never had long pauses between the lines, it all goes pretty smoothly.

Also the general idea here seems to be that it's not the content of the line that you're choosing but instead the style in which it's delivered. I'd say it's a neat idea. Fits the context of the game, too.

What happens if you don't choose? Does it pick one for you? Does he stand there stupidly?

Straying Bullet:


Wrex: Shepard
Shephard : Wrex

It's epic in every way.

That's MAN-BONDING, man. Oh wait my Shepard is a gal.

That reminds me of Indigo Prophecy. You also had to make a choice of which dialogue option to choose in a ridiculously short time limit. It was way worse because

- it didn't change anything, it only limited what information you got since whatever question you asked last was skipped
- it didn't always make sense, since sometimes you were just chatting with your brother and shouldn't be on a time limit, and sometimes you were the leading police officer on an investigation and really shouldn't be on a time limit
- the one-word summaries were always insane things like 'trousers' and 'aardvark'.

Achivement Unlocked: Stare Into The Abyss...

Souplex:
What happens if you don't choose? Does it pick one for you? Does he stand there stupidly?

If you'll do nothing, it'll always pick the last used stance (for example if you were aggressive in last dialog choice, then the default one during next dialog will be aggresive as well). If it's the case with the first dialog choice, or the non-standard one (like kill/spare choice for example), the default one is on the left side.

Also, except from fast forwarding, I never encountered that kind of bug. Or any other bug mentioned anywhere for that matter. Looks like I care too much for this game to let it being infested by bugs :P

Chipperz:

Left is "Suave", right is "Professional" and up is "Agressive". This is what it ALWAYS is. It takes a few lines (or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...) to work out what will work and what won't work on each character, and then it's just a case of choose if you want to piss off or befriend each character.

The idea that having thirty seconds to pick a dialogue option is "hard" or "stressful" is really, really sad for a subculture that prides itself on quick reflexes and above-average intelligence...

to be honest, when you hear "World of Warcraft", you immediately think of the MMO, not the books or the god-awful comics, so.........WoW really doesn't have a story [that is memorable off the top of your head].

OT: I was thinking about renting this game just to be Jack Bauer to all the girls and James Bond to all the guys for hilarity reasons, but I was also hungry at the moment, looking back, that sandvich possibly game more entertainment than this game.

Kalezian:

Chipperz:
(or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...)

to be honest, when you hear "World of Warcraft", you immediately think of the MMO, not the books or the god-awful comics, so.........WoW really doesn't have a story [that is memorable off the top of your head].

I think the point was not about the books or comics; but how there are stories in WoW if you bother to read quest text; and that many gamers don't. They just pick, "accept quest" and then when completing or "cashing in", they pick the reward and hit "complete". Much like in rpgs with spoken dialog or cut-scenes; players just skip it. They memorize which slot it "good" "neutral" or "bad" and hit it without listening to what the NPC actually says. The idea of "no story in WoW" is because people don't read quest text. Following that concept, there's no story in an FPS where you "A" through cut-scenes, there's no story in Legend of Zelda games if you "A" through text boxes, there's no story in Kotor/ME etc if you "A" through cut-scenes and dialog trees.

OT: Good to have a timer, but why make you wait once you've made a selection? I can see having the grace period if you accidentally hit the wrong one, but you could have a confirm box that would do the same thing (sure, another second of read and press, but still less than 30 seconds each and every time).

Nuke_em_05:

Kalezian:

Chipperz:
(or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...)

to be honest, when you hear "World of Warcraft", you immediately think of the MMO, not the books or the god-awful comics, so.........WoW really doesn't have a story [that is memorable off the top of your head].

I think the point was not about the books or comics; but how there are stories in WoW if you bother to read quest text; and that many gamers don't. They just pick, "accept quest" and then when completing or "cashing in", they pick the reward and hit "complete". Much like in rpgs with spoken dialog or cut-scenes; players just skip it. They memorize which slot it "good" "neutral" or "bad" and hit it without listening to what the NPC actually says. The idea of "no story in WoW" is because people don't read quest text. Following that concept, there's no story in an FPS where you "A" through cut-scenes, there's no story in Legend of Zelda games if you "A" through text boxes, there's no story in Kotor/ME etc if you "A" through cut-scenes and dialog trees.

I used to play WoW, back before Burning Crusade, and I did read quest text, hell, for the MMO's that I still play [that give quests], I still read quest text just because.

I still stand by my point that WoW does not have a story though, since even now there is no quest that stands out story-wise.

Kalezian:

Nuke_em_05:

Kalezian:

Chipperz:
(or reading the dossier, but if the "there's no story in World of Warcraft" argument proves anything, it's that most gamers can't/won't read...)

to be honest, when you hear "World of Warcraft", you immediately think of the MMO, not the books or the god-awful comics, so.........WoW really doesn't have a story [that is memorable off the top of your head].

I think the point was not about the books or comics; but how there are stories in WoW if you bother to read quest text; and that many gamers don't. They just pick, "accept quest" and then when completing or "cashing in", they pick the reward and hit "complete". Much like in rpgs with spoken dialog or cut-scenes; players just skip it. They memorize which slot it "good" "neutral" or "bad" and hit it without listening to what the NPC actually says. The idea of "no story in WoW" is because people don't read quest text. Following that concept, there's no story in an FPS where you "A" through cut-scenes, there's no story in Legend of Zelda games if you "A" through text boxes, there's no story in Kotor/ME etc if you "A" through cut-scenes and dialog trees.

I used to play WoW, back before Burning Crusade, and I did read quest text, hell, for the MMO's that I still play [that give quests], I still read quest text just because.

I still stand by my point that WoW does not have a story though, since even now there is no quest that stands out story-wise.

While this has veered off-course on an aging thread, I submit that I remember several quite vividly.

1. The kid who stole his aunt's necklace in Elwynn, where you go all over hell and back, make a pie, and kill a kobold in a mine.
2. Hogger
3. The fued romance in elynn.
4. The defias exposition and Edwin Van Cleef arcs
5. Stalvan Mismantle
6. Jitters/Yorgen
7. Redridge and the quest that has you go all over the kingdom of Stormwind to find aid, exposition of how the alliance is spread thin.
8. The entire "Missing Diplomat" segway to Onyxia chain.
9. Competing brewers in Dun Morogh
10. Saving the daughter in Ashenvale.
11. Night elf redemption of kalimdor quests.
12. Tirion Fordring's quests in plaguelands.

That's just vanilla.

Granted a great deal of "story" is only exposed in the endgame content, Blackrock Mountain, Plaguelands, Sithilus, etc.

Then in BC and the starter zones for Dranei at least trying to save the environment they destroyed and fending off from the blood elves.

Wrath has gotten much better, actually. Especially with phasing (though hit and miss sometimes). Save this outpost, now a full on fort. Hold this hill, now a tower. Help Fordragon, witness the Wrathgate, then battle for undercity.

Just off the top of my head here between work and class.

Catcha.

 

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