Editor's Note: DIY

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I wonder if I am just super lucky, I dont think I ever ran into a bug with NWN 2 (which I still pick up and replay with regularity with all the expansion packs) or Alpha Protocol that I played to fucking death on the xb360.

iirc the Fallout games were *always* bugged to fucked, hells I remember getting the higwayman car in Fallout 2 only to find out that the fucking boot of the car dissapeared at random, along with the loot you stored in it :(

Never completed Kotor 2, just didnt enjoy the d20 it used which is wierd I know.

I've always been dissapointed by Obsidian. They can certainly talk their way into getting sex but once they get there they just sortuv sit there with no audio feedback while their eye slowly twitches like a glitch.

Personally Obsidian needs to really think about what they want to do because video/pc games obviously isn't in their criteria.

Soylent Dave:

That's the problem - two or three major bugs in 40 hours isn't considered bad programming?

Are your standards (or expectations) really that low?

Yes. I've never gotten through any modern game without at least one freeze, graphical glitch, or gameplay malfunction. It happens. The fact that the Fallout games let you save and autosave at virtually any spot and an unlimited number of times, it really keeps the bugs from getting out of hand when you encounter them. Twilight Princess and Metroid Other M both had major game breaking errors that required Nintendo to mail SD cards to people. I couldn't finish 3D Dot Game Heroes because it froze every 20 minutes. The same with Ninja Gaiden 2. After a bunch of updates, when I played through Heavy Rain, it still had a dialog option that led to a dead end that required a level restart.

So, I'd say 3 errors for the type of game Fallout is (one with mountains of scripting, collectible objects, tons of characters, helpful NPCs) it's not that bad. Remember kids, save often and back them up. Your xbox has a USB port for a reason.

Wow...to have Russ Pits say Fuck You like that...its like hearing your dad curse out a guy (when he normally is polite) and it just screws with your mind.

The only Obsidian game I've never played is Alpha Protocol. No interest in it. The others (from KotOR 2 on) I have played, and enjoyed. The technical issues were rarely more than annoying but I guess that's my (good) luck. In NV (PC) for example I only had a couple of freezes in my whole play through. Haven't done the dlc yet so there is some room for disaster. It's almost cult like the amount of whining people do about them. The only reason I have any interest in Dungeon Siege III at all is because of Obsidian. I feel... unusual :)

On the plus side, at least they aren't Bethesda.

It's okay Russ. Now the healing can begin...

For all of us.

LogicNProportion:

...But Russ, dude, your signature looks like it reads as "Puss Pitts." : I

Exactly what i thought...

But seriously I played New Vegas and loved it. Guess that makes me a minority?

Why is this issue called "DIY"? Is it because we're supposed to write the articles ourselves?

Like I needed another reason to love you, man. You have voiced EVERYTHING I have EVER felt in regard to Obsidian Entertainment. Thank you.

I loved new vegas. But I am from the master race of pc gamers so I fix the bugs myself. And the mods oh god how I love mods.Damn fallout 2 was broken as shit, I remember now. Nice poem-esque article though. Obsidian fail at making the best games. But at least they dont aim too low,unfortunately they just dont have a very steady aim.

rembrandtqeinstein:
Poor obsidian. They squandered all the capital they saved up from the Black Isle days. I'm still of the yahtzee school of thought that an ambitious failure is something that is more desirable than a timid, committee-generated success.

And though Kotor 2 didn't have an ending Peragus was the best opening level ever made.

They never HAD any capital, Herve Caen squandered it on Fallout: BOS. Good thing that bastard got bent over the barrel by Bethesda like he did with gamers and Black Isle. The funny part is Herve Caen wrote the policy Bobby Kotick is using now.

OT: Obsidian are good developers. A buggy-but-great game is much better than a timid and safe game. You can fix bugs in a masterpiece, but you can't fix a shitty game.

Ultratwinkie:

rembrandtqeinstein:
Poor obsidian. They squandered all the capital they saved up from the Black Isle days. I'm still of the yahtzee school of thought that an ambitious failure is something that is more desirable than a timid, committee-generated success.

And though Kotor 2 didn't have an ending Peragus was the best opening level ever made.

They never HAD any capital, Herve Caen squandered it on Fallout: BOS. Good thing that bastard got bent over the barrel by Bethesda like he did with gamers and Black Isle. The funny part is Herve Caen wrote the policy Bobby Kotick is using now.

OT: Obsidian are good developers. A buggy-but-great game is much better than a timid and safe game. You can fix bugs in a masterpiece, but you can't fix a shitty game.

You can't "fix" something like Kotor2 because there are structural issues. Kotor cut the story off 2/3 of the way in. HK droids? Dark Nihilus explanation? Possible "good" ending for Traya? Actual (multiple) endings? These are way beyond patching.

Maybe the bugs in New Vegas can be fixed but honestly I thought the story was really uninteresting. And even forgetting the bugs the poor design decisions fall squarely in Obsidian's lap.

The whole concept of the vault dweller is that since both you the player and your character are newcomers in the wasteland world. Everything needs to be explained and is a new discovery. The courier is a native and is supposedly well traveled....why isn't my map filled in when I first start? Why am I suddenly gaining levels when I've been doing a relatively dangerous job my whole life? Why am I chasing a guy who shot me when I should be running the hell away from him? Have him kill my family or at least a close relative, that would give me motivation for seeking out revenge.

The location was really a poor choice. You know how a desert looks after a nuclear war? A lot like a desert does BEFORE a nuclear war. The first town was particularly boring, not one character there had any real personality. And the voice acting overall was hideous, the only well written and acted npc was the Deputy Beagle. To be fair I never actually made it into vegas but I did pretty much everything outside.

I understand the whole "post nuclear western" concept but the idea by itself isnt enough to carry a game like Fallout.

rembrandtqeinstein:

Ultratwinkie:

rembrandtqeinstein:
Poor obsidian. They squandered all the capital they saved up from the Black Isle days. I'm still of the yahtzee school of thought that an ambitious failure is something that is more desirable than a timid, committee-generated success.

And though Kotor 2 didn't have an ending Peragus was the best opening level ever made.

They never HAD any capital, Herve Caen squandered it on Fallout: BOS. Good thing that bastard got bent over the barrel by Bethesda like he did with gamers and Black Isle. The funny part is Herve Caen wrote the policy Bobby Kotick is using now.

OT: Obsidian are good developers. A buggy-but-great game is much better than a timid and safe game. You can fix bugs in a masterpiece, but you can't fix a shitty game.

You can't "fix" something like Kotor2 because there are structural issues. Kotor cut the story off 2/3 of the way in. HK droids? Dark Nihilus explanation? Possible "good" ending for Traya? Actual (multiple) endings? These are way beyond patching.

Maybe the bugs in New Vegas can be fixed but honestly I thought the story was really uninteresting. And even forgetting the bugs the poor design decisions fall squarely in Obsidian's lap.

The whole concept of the vault dweller is that since both you the player and your character are newcomers in the wasteland world. Everything needs to be explained and is a new discovery. The courier is a native and is supposedly well traveled....why isn't my map filled in when I first start? Why am I suddenly gaining levels when I've been doing a relatively dangerous job my whole life? Why am I chasing a guy who shot me when I should be running the hell away from him? Have him kill my family or at least a close relative, that would give me motivation for seeking out revenge.

The location was really a poor choice. You know how a desert looks after a nuclear war? A lot like a desert does BEFORE a nuclear war. The first town was particularly boring, not one character there had any real personality. And the voice acting overall was hideous, the only well written and acted npc was the Deputy Beagle. To be fair I never actually made it into vegas but I did pretty much everything outside.

I understand the whole "post nuclear western" concept but the idea by itself isnt enough to carry a game like Fallout.

If you actually look into the story, the Courier is from California. You keep going on about how its post apocalyptic but after a certain time it just gets ridiculous. Fallout 3 had a city frozen in time, with no one doing anything and absolute contrived surroundings.

- NO police, ambulances, or fire trucks. In a post apocalyptic scenario emergency vehicles would be everywhere.

- NO farms. Really? A basic need is suddenly gone?

- NO sense of population. If human gestation takes 9 months and the BOS are losing 10-20 members a day, how many years does it take the magic "pulling soldiers out of my ass" spell stop working? In fact, who the hell "protects the people" in the middle of DC? Where the civilians are on the outskirts? Especially in a city where Super mutants are numerous where they should be dead? If this holds up a fallout game, New Vegas has 10x the foundation.

- NO sense of time or place. The combat shotgun is a WWII Russian gun. 19940s to 2077, and no one objected to buying obsolete guns from Communists?

- NO sense in story. Why stop someone from doing something that is in your benefit? Why is the Enclave suddenly numbered in the thousands? After the oil rig?

If there is no progress after centuries, with no good explanation, then its bad level design. In New Vegas, repairs and resettlement are being made opposed to Fallout 3. As for levels, you are a civilian. Civilians are known to be level 1s. Your contract clearly stipulates that if you lose a package, its your ass on the line. A mysterious package stolen? and no curiosity over why or anger? That makes no sense. Saying no one was interesting wouldn't make sense. They were interesting and believable instead of Fallout 3's awful cardboard characters. Being strange for strangeness sake does not work. KOTOR 2 was a forced job based on deadlines. Sometimes you meet the deadlines, sometimes you don't. Anyone who has worked in the video game industry can tell you that when rush jobs are done, you will endure absolute hell until release.

Black Isle made excellent games, mostly bug-free. And got proper patches for those bugs that did exist.
Obsidian apparently sees no need for proper QA testing, and releases buggy, unstable disasters that are hardly playable for many people, then either completely drops all support for the games (blaming their publisher), or only half-heartedly patches them.

I have no doubt that the programmers, writers, developers, and artists at Obsidian are good at what they do, but a passion in making games is not enough by itself. I have no idea how Obsidian manages to remain in business. Do they sign publisher contracts of Pay on Delivery, and is that why they can release games in the piss-poor condition they do?

It seems like Obsidian is a great example of what happens when developers think they no longer need publishers. Based on their horrible track record I conclude that they really NEEDED Interplay to push them. It would be best for everyone if some publisher bought them up and forced them to start supporting their games again.

So my question is, if their games were so consistently bad and poor quality and there was such mistreatment of the customer, why buy so many? I don't see a point getting mad if one is just going to turn around and continue buying like some drug-addicted junkie. Gamers really need to learn to just vote with their wallets rather than wasting so much energy impotently nerd-raging on the internet. Learn some self-control for once and just don't buy it.

I shed a tear while reading that...

...then realised that this is the kind of emorage that you find on the WoW or EvE forums when the dev's break things.

Still, nice to know that professional gaming media editors can emo rage too.

=P

erbkaiser:
Black Isle made excellent games, mostly bug-free. And got proper patches for those bugs that did exist.
Obsidian apparently sees no need for proper QA testing, and releases buggy, unstable disasters that are hardly playable for many people, then either completely drops all support for the games (blaming their publisher), or only half-heartedly patches them.

I have no doubt that the programmers, writers, developers, and artists at Obsidian are good at what they do, but a passion in making games is not enough by itself. I have no idea how Obsidian manages to remain in business. Do they sign publisher contracts of Pay on Delivery, and is that why they can release games in the piss-poor condition they do?

It seems like Obsidian is a great example of what happens when developers think they no longer need publishers. Based on their horrible track record I conclude that they really NEEDED Interplay to push them. It would be best for everyone if some publisher bought them up and forced them to start supporting their games again.

Do you know that all Black Isle games had restoration patches?That recovered hell 1/10th of a game or more and fixed numerous gamebreakers that you previously had to skip.From what I've read about Troika Games,Obsidian,Black Isle they all had a similiar work style.They liked to have long hours for the planning and a very relaxed athmosphere.Hence the great ideas.Then they have to enter a crunch and start working.What all 3 companies complained about was:"We were almost finished ready to test,and then the publisher takes our game from our hands when it's not ready.And they don't ship it right away.It sits waiting for a few months and then gets released.All we could do was twiddle our thumbs and prepare bugfixes."
Which would explain why all Black Isle,Obsidian and Troika Games games had patches on day 1.Obsidian is a great company one with ideas and innovations.They take risks.What are a few bugs that can get patched?

Ha! Serves all you Obsidian fans right for financially supporting buggy software! =p

Hristo Tzonkov:
Do you know that all Black Isle games had restoration patches?

Yes, I have played most of them when they came out (still have the old big cardboard boxes), and replayed them with the restoration/addon patches starting a few years back.
But no BI game was essentially unplayable with game stopping bugs on release (to my knowledge -- I played Planescape: Torment, both Fallouts, and both Icewind Dales plus expansions) whereas every single Obisidian game so far I've either played or read reviews of does appear to be.

Virtually all games have cut content, that does not mean Obsidian gets a free pass. Their release state of games is horrible, their patching record is atrocious, and they have definitely squandered any good will they earned with their BI track record with me.
In most cases when a publisher swallows up a developer it means bad news (e.g. Maxis/EA or Bioware/EA), but in the case of Obsidian it could only improve things IMO.

In general agreement; however, I gave up after NWNII. I never got to finish the game because it kept breaking, I must have played that starting lizardman dungeon about 10 times and have never got to the end. Sometimes you just get tired of the excuses (Isn't that right Fable fans?).

I'm hoping Bethesda's shiny new engine is more stable >.<

Although I've had crashes and bugs in New Vegas I still enjoy the game.

Obsidian's been nicer to me. I played through the beautiful love letter that is Mask of the Betrayer, I didn't wait all night for her to turn up in Alpha Protocol because I knew she'd just turn up 8 hours late stinking drunk and not remember it. And with New Vegas I'll be there just as soon as she's cleaned the sick off her top.

She's nicer to me, but I'm not a fool, I know her tricks but the good times are worth it.

Obsidian comes down to one simple thing for me: Does story matter?

No one else gives us stories that matter. Only Obsidian. If story matters, then Obsidian is it; everyone else's stories are crap. Even BioWare fails us now.

If story matters, Obsidian's your love.
If you're not here for the story, go on hating Obsidian.

Thank you for venting what I have been feeling since all these large RPG companies started porting games to consoles.

DA:O was the final straw for me. I did not purchase FO3 until all the expansions had been released and there were tonnes of player create mods, which was fantastic. I will need to wait at least another year before I purchase FO:NV.

I am currently playing through BG1 (Tutu) and have BG2, IWD 1&2 and FO 1&2 to go. For me, what makes a great RPG game is purely the story and being able to use imagination to lose yourself in that world. Too much time and money has been spent by these f**king companies, trimming down all the content and making it look good, so that it appeals to the MTV generation with short attention spans.

Sannom:

I'm still flaggerbast at how out-of-proportions those lay-offs were blown. As if firing 6 people, and mostly interns among them, was the equivalent of firing half the people on the payroll.

people react badly to layoff news?
seems normal to me

zelda2fanboy:

Soylent Dave:

That's the problem - two or three major bugs in 40 hours isn't considered bad programming?

Are your standards (or expectations) really that low?

Yes. I've never gotten through any modern game without at least one freeze, graphical glitch, or gameplay malfunction. It happens. The fact that the Fallout games let you save and autosave at virtually any spot and an unlimited number of times, it really keeps the bugs from getting out of hand when you encounter them.

Yeah... - only one of the game-breaking errors in New Vegas was that it corrupts (or corrupted; I think they fixed it, but then they might have broken it again - I lose track) your saves and autosaves. And I shouldn't have to double-backup my game saves, it isn't 1990.

But either you're having atrocious luck with games or I'm playing better games than you (... or simpler ones!); I can't say that most modern games I play feature gameplay malfunctions or freezes. The occasional graphical glitch crops up (but even then New Vegas went to a ridiculous extreme with its graphical cockups).

It's also notable that I didn't experience any bugs in Fallout 3 (and I played it a lot), and I've experienced a lot of really irritating ones in 15 hours or so of New Vegas (graphical weirdness and the much more annoying 'oops, you can't finish this quest. Or that one. Or this one.' variety).

I mean, Creative Assembly are kinda notable for releasing games where the AI isn't actually as good as it's meant to be (which is why people usually wait for the patch), but at least their games are still playable; they're just not as good as they should be.

Obsidian really are in a league of their own when it comes to repeatedly releasing unfinished, broken games.

krellen:
Obsidian comes down to one simple thing for me: Does story matter?

No one else gives us stories that matter. Only Obsidian. If story matters, then Obsidian is it; everyone else's stories are crap. Even BioWare fails us now.

If story matters, Obsidian's your love.
If you're not here for the story, go on hating Obsidian.

Traditionally, though, stories have a beginning a middle and an end.

Not a beginning, most of the middle and oops! deadline, oh well you kinda figured out what the end was going to be; here's a bit of a cutscene - no, wait we didn't finish that either. See you next game folks!

(also, the quality of the story doesn't really matter if the game is too broken to enable me to discover it...)

All of the reviews on the internet of Fallout: New Vegas should be replaced with this letter ASAP.

Soylent Dave:
Traditionally, though, stories have a beginning a middle and an end.

What game didn't you get an end for?

KOTOR2? Had an ending.
NWN2? Had an ending, although I'll admit they did make you pay to buy the Mask of the Betrayer campaign.
Alpha Protocol? New Vegas? Multiple endings each.

I'm not sure what ending you think you missed.

krellen:

Soylent Dave:
Traditionally, though, stories have a beginning a middle and an end.

What game didn't you get an end for?

KOTOR2? Had an ending.
NWN2? Had an ending, although I'll admit they did make you pay to buy the Mask of the Betrayer campaign.
Alpha Protocol? New Vegas? Multiple endings each.

I'm not sure what ending you think you missed.

NWN2 you've covered.

KoTOR 2 didn't have a finished ending - not for the main character, not for the story and not for (most of) your companions; they clearly cobbled something together when they ran out of time.

In my ideal game, my reaction to playing a game to its conclusion wouldn't be "Did I skip something accidentally?" (to the point that I reloaded my last save!)

With New Vegas, I'm having trouble getting to the end of quests (that is, I keep getting quests that are bugged so that I can't finish them) - so I don't know whether the main story ends coherently or not; but I know a lot of the little ones don't (to be fair, that's probably not because they haven't written endings into the game, it's just that their game isn't robust enough to handle things like my going to locations in a slightly different order...)

KoTOR 2 is the one that really annoyed me, because I was actively enjoying the game until the end (and I don't just mean the 'blink and you'll miss it' cut-scene(s); I mean the way the story and characterisation all just falls away as you move towards the end).

Vegas is annoying me on and off at the moment, because the various bugs keep stopping me wanting to play the game (they're not necessarily 'game breaking' because I don't think any of the wonky quests are really important ones (yet), but they are definitely immersion-breaking), so I haven't been able to get into a proper stride with it.

Is it just me, or is there only one article showing up? What's going on?

Soylent Dave:
KoTOR 2 didn't have a finished ending - not for the main character, not for the story and not for (most of) your companions; they clearly cobbled something together when they ran out of time.

At least in this one case, we actually know for a fact that their publisher did cut off about a year of development time, so this is one case where you actually should cut them some slack.

Then again, if you want to know where they were going with KOTOR2, you could just go back and play that same old Mask of the Betrayer; it's the same basic premise, with Kaelyn and Akachi standing in for Kreia.

Maybe I didn't run into so many game-stopping bugs with New Vegas because I waited a month to buy it, or because I got it on PC instead of XBox, or because I'm magic and technology just works for me, but anyway, I never ran into any game-stopping bugs that prevented me from completing New Vegas five separate times (enough to accrue every achievement available). But there's still an ending there.

Russ Pitts:
Editor's Note: DIY

You've burned your last bit of goodwill, Obsidian.

Read Full Article

Fun fact: BETHESDA handles the QA for New Vegas.

EDIT: Straight from Project Lead J.E. Sawyer's Formspring account.
Link

So if you are looking for someone to cry at, turn to Bethesda.

EDIT 2: Seriously, you sound like you are really mad. Chill out, it's just some fucking bugs. Reload and get over it.

OakTable:

Russ Pitts:
Editor's Note: DIY

You've burned your last bit of goodwill, Obsidian.

Read Full Article

Fun fact: BETHESDA handles the QA for New Vegas.

EDIT: Straight from Project Lead J.E. Sawyer's Formspring account.
Link

So if you are looking for someone to cry at, turn to Bethesda.

It's always some excuse. "The publisher did it. The engine was buggy when we got it. My dog died." Wah, wah, wah. Whatever. When your name is on it, you take ownership of the good and the bad, or you shut up, take your ball and go home.

Russ Pitts:

OakTable:

Russ Pitts:
Editor's Note: DIY

You've burned your last bit of goodwill, Obsidian.

Read Full Article

Fun fact: BETHESDA handles the QA for New Vegas.

EDIT: Straight from Project Lead J.E. Sawyer's Formspring account.
Link

So if you are looking for someone to cry at, turn to Bethesda.

It's always some excuse. "The publisher did it. The engine was buggy when we got it. My dog died." Wah, wah, wah. Whatever. When your name is on it, you take ownership of the good and the bad, or you shut up, take your ball and go home.

Obsidian's name isn't even on the front cover. And you seem to be turning a blind eye to Bethesda's shitty bug testers because, "OMG Obsidian games are buggy and bugs hurt my feelings because I have to spend 10 seconds reloading the game".

EDIT: And really, this IS a case of the publisher fucking everything up, seeing as the publisher actually did the QA work on it, rather than the whole, "Oh it would've been better if they had like 3 extra months to finish it" thing most people say.

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