Jimquisition: Emotions, Polygons, and Ellen Page

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That's actually why anime characters have the faces they do. So emotion can be shown a lot more clearly. They don't look realistic, but to me this:

expresses a hell of a lot more emotion than this:

This is a great point, it's why I sort of wish games would go back to a more cartoony/animated feel, rather than trying to just cram more polygons into everything to try and make it look more true to life, because it never really works. Personally I loved the Wind Waker because of the way it was able to convey emotion. OoT and the other games were decent at that as well, but WW really nailed it. One of the reasons I fell in love with Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is because of the quality of the art and facial expressions.

Instead we get uncanny valley crap like this and Bioware-face which is just amusing at times, but it still breaks immersion. I mean, it's not all that bad but 'realistic' graphics almost never seems true to life or truly emotional.

So what you're saying is David Cage is a robot. And that we needed a really super-advanced graphics instead of good storytelling or gameplay of any kind. Yeah, that sounds about accurate.

Or was the message "David Cage once shared a conversation with Ellen Page." Whoa, this is deep. It's like you gotta be some kind of wizard to get the message.


Andy Shandy:

As great a portmanteau as "Willemotions" is, I think you mean "Willem Dafoetions", because it flows off the tongue more smoothly.

OT: I cannot believe I have been so blind all this time. To think, I thought that personality and characterization were what conveyed emotion. I have been a fool! Thank you, Jimid Sterlage, for showing me the truth!

It was actually a toss up between Willemotions and Willem Dafoetions, and I chose Willemotions because it's quicker and easier to type =P

I do love both, however. And just Dafoetions as well too :D

The official term shall be Willem Dafoetions then, with Willemotions and Dafoetions as shorthands for it.

Curious, I could have sworn that David Cage was French...

OT: To be honest the games that have affected me most "emotionally" are games with pretty poor graphics.

I'm sure someone has made the comparison already but just look at The Walking Dead... all angular and low res, it's not like there could possibly be any polygons emotion there...


I don't understand all the hate for his games. I thought heavy rain was great, and the niche he fills isn't one being filled by any other triple AAA developer. Would you guys prefer if Quantic Dream just made another spunkgargleweewee games? Of course he's passionate about the games he makes and the style he makes them in so by what right do we have to be so cynical as to say that it's wrong. I don't want every game being like Heavy Rain but neither do I want every game being like my personal favorite genre, a RTS.

Just because a game isn't spunkgargleweewee, doesn't mean it's good. I applaud David Cage for trying to make different games, but they're still pretty bad.

Take Heavy Rain. Interesting concept and had some cool ideas, but it tried too hard to be emotional and deep and the game was garbage. Boring characters, stupid plot, bland story, and terrible controls. The only thing it really had going for it was that it looked good. And press X to Jason.

Is it just me or does that face look somewhat like another face I know?

Emotion in games is dependent on making us emotional attached to them. If we care about them as a character, then there emotional problems of that character will reflect on us. If the character is boring, unrelatable and drab then you cant force the player to feel emotional about them. Saying "Look, his sad, now you should be to" doesnt work if we doesnt give a crap about the character.

I can't speak for everyone else but I found the David Cage guest appearance to be brilliant, such an enlightened man. I'm upset to learn that I don't have emotion, I'd cry over it but...I don't have emotion.

Jim should be allowed to have fun in some of his videos, if you didn't like it, just wait till next week.

...expresses a hell of a lot more emotion than this:

GAAH! What the hell is that thing?

You know, the worst experience with a game trying to forge an emotional bond and failing recently was the original Fable. Which is an old game, but I don't buy brand new games, so screw you. But that experience was painful. It put me in a shitty mood and I was already in a shitty mood and hoping playing that game would cheer me up a little. Boy, was I wrong. Worst part was relatively early in the game when I had discovered that Fable had a fart button, a belch button and a flirt button. Knowing I could eventually shag NPCs I decided to flirt with all the chicks because I could. So as I was running to something I passed this chick and stopped to flirt with her but accidentally hit the laugh button, whereupon my character started laughing at fucking nothing, which was probably weird. But then the girl and several other nearby characters all turned toward me and also laughed at fucking nothing.


It was like Uncanny Valley of the Damned or something. I have never had a more unnerving experience while playing a game. Ever. I'm pretty sure this was not the intent.

I guess the lesson here is that there's more to creating an emotional connection between the player and the in-game characters than just higher pixel or polygon counts or the ability to seduce male or female characters for no real reason. Frankly, I had a much stronger-- not that much stronger, mind-- to the splicers in Bioshock. They also resided in the uncanny valley, but they were supposed to because they were insane and mere ghosts of their former selves. They would spout random-seeming lines as if they didn't quite know where they were or what was going on. There's a sadness in that which trickled just beneath the surface. A trickle isn't much, but it's more than the parched deserts of Fable or whatever the hell that picture is of above.

But have they yet gained enough polygons to differentiate tears from liquid pride?

I really don't understand why they're still trying to make games instead of animated films. One of their tech-demo shorts, "Kara", looks amazing. They just should do that from now on.

Did you SEE Enki Bilal's "Immortal"? That's probably why they don't make films. Cage must've been angry that the actors didn't have enough polygons on their faces.

That was fucking brilliant Jim.

I don't care how many polys the characters in next gen games have, or how sophisticated the motion capture software is that they use. If they can't get the damn cloth on the clothes to move like actual cloth, the characters are still going to look like awkward action figures dressed in those rubber clothes made for Polly Pockets.

The issue Cage has is twofold and neither hasn't been touched yet. The first is that it's not emotions he's talking about but expressions while the latter can convey the former, they are not interchangeable. If Cage would understand that he would be halfway there and his comments would be more accurate and less stupid sounding.

The second is the belief that the modern game industry as refined expressing emotions to the point where the only way to go is with higher fidelity. To that I say not only is it inaccurate but the modern gaming market has actually regressed in that concept, if at least in the big budget market if not in general. A game like Heavy Rain and Fahrenheit would simply be regarded as a forgettable flash in the pan 15-20 years ago because back then character expressions were a core part of the narrative in most top tier games. With the top tier games currently rarely showing very little face time in general and what is shown is largely neutral, all the higher fidelity would bring is more detail of just how the characters don't care about anything.

The characters need to have emotions before they can be expressed, and all that needs to happen before your try to refine it with higher fidelity.

There's no possible way to connect to the character if the character has only 3000 polygons.


Rex Dark:
Is it just me or does that face look somewhat like another face I know?

So that's what this graphics race is actually about! Digitally recreating the first Doctor! Okay, that's a crazy conspiracy I can get behind.

Also, there's only so much gaming put into Quantic Dreams' games, oftentimes it's just glorified QTEs to advance the cutscenes.

That really doesn't bother people as much as you'd imagine. Waking Dead has less gaming than Heavy Rain and Walking Dead was critically and publically acclaimed, while Heavy Rain's reaction ranged from "ewwwww" to "meh, it's okay."

Walking Dead just had more... dare I say EMOTION than any game David Cage has made so far?

well damn, can honestly say I aint really a fan of Jim's stuff, but that was beautiful.

so yeah, david cage needs to do one, the arrogant talentless tosspot.

hahahah, fun episode... that reminds me... what was done back in 1997...

oh yeah, that's right... this:

What is cage really making other than some pretty very expensive point in click adventure games? Just assume play this again (or any one of dozens of point n' clicks) than slog threw another Cage "emotion" fest.

The only thing this guy has proven is that he does very little with a lot...


If only this scene had more polygons!!! (Shakes fist at universe!) MoooRRRRRR PoLyGoNs!!!

Hmm, I liked the subject matter, and it was a good parody, but I think it'd have worked better if perhaps the David Cage mockery was done for maybe the first minute or so, then the rest as normal.

It was good, I just felt the joke was wearing a little thin by the end.

Yeah, I get that it's a parody, but it's spread a little thin and it lacks the usual punch. He's certainly made a great parody, but as an episode of the Jimquisition it doesn't hold up to the normal standard. Well done, just not very funny.

Funny how I cared for the little blocks from Thomas Was Alone more than for any of the Quantic Dream's characters.

Never understood why some people are so assured that perfect realism is the only way to go for video games. You can do so much stuff with animation, why would you want to just recreate our boring world instead?

Needed less David Cage impression and more discussing why his views are delusional.

I feel the same, although I did find the impression funny.

I liked Indigo Prophecy, though it would have been nice if the entire third act hadn't been cut. And I imagine I'll play Heavy Rain when I acquire a PS3. I like Cage and think he often has good ideas but the implementation of them isn't always so hot.

As far as graphics are concerned, the level of detail in games now is just fine by me. I don't need, or even want photorealistic.

We're all doomed aren't we?

No. Just David Cage. The guy is bananas.

I never payed attention to Heavy Rain and that guy so I really lack the context for the video, but I think I can quite imagine what this guy said now. Was still funny even though I lacked the context, so this shows what a great comedian jim has become... the end was especially funny >.<

Is it wrong that I had to replay the part where he was making fun of the old man face because I was too busy admiring the graphics to listen to him?


They don't and they can't. Just tesselating something to an incredible point will not make it better (even if that just seems to be Cage's idea). On more than one occasion I've seen high-poly models completely wasted because they weren't aligned correctly so that the seams showed.
Doing good visual design (like Gearbox with Borderlands 2) helps a lot though.

I was taking the piss, but if you want to be all serious and stuff, the gaming community tends to want the shiniest turd, and people bitch and moan about how BLT's visuals "hurt my eyes."

As someone who's never played any of David Cage's work, is his writing really that bad, or does he just get an exceptionally bad rep because he thinks he's some sort of transcendent genius but in reality isn't?

The writing's usually adequate, sometimes poor. Same as all videogame writing, since there is actually no good videogame writing, and never has been. Sure, it's maybe overall worse than Walking Dead for instance, but Walking Dead's writing also had frequent moments of facepalm-worthy shittiness, as well as entire conversations that felt painfully unnecessary (especially in the final episode, which could have been about half as long without sacrificing anything, and had some horribly fake dialogue, like in that whole scene where they are trying to break through the wooden wall in the attic). All in all, it's ok, for videogame writing.

Anton Chekhov once wrote, and I'm paraphrasing, that the only way to write a great story is to first write a shitty one, then rewrite it by removing half of it, and then repeat that process several times. This is not a concept that seems to apply to videogame writing, so we can't expect anything really good any time soon.

Jim is just jealous because David Cage got to meet Ellen Page.

And suck Willem Dafoes dick.


And now after this brief show of panic, I return to a regular mode of writing.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst. I liked the last little short film David Cage directed(robolady wanting to live).

Sure hope there's a game in the next product he's putting out. Not sure I want to deal with a QTE bonanza.

Okay, actually watched the video in question that this was parodying, and I have to say... David Cage is actually right.

I mean, he leaves alot of room for people to make a strawman out of him, but he's right. The advantage of having technology is that you now have the power to, if you so choose, emulate emotion on a character's face without resorting to exaggeration. This is excellent for breaking down another wall in immersion. It wasn't stated, nor implied that better graphigz and moar poligonz equalz moar emotun, just that they give the developers more power to create it. It's well established that if you want to convey emotion, you need to give your audience a reason to have feelings for what you create, usually in that they can relate to it somehow. Cage never said that you can now skip that entire process of creating believable characters and employing drama into your work due to the better super graphics polygons emotion.

The focal point of that presentation, however, WAS the graphical capabilities of the PS4, and the argument was that graphics r gud, which is true, but they're not a necessity. It sounds to me like Cage was just excited that, hey, they got this new tool, and now, suddenly, they can start broadcasting in color versus black and white.

And yeah, developers will pervert it. But do you know what? I have a hunch that, among those list of developers that do so, going straight for moar polygonz (omg) and nothing else, Quantic Dream will not be on that list.

If anyone was wondering the name of that magazine is Razzle

This was disturbing enough, but when you watch it after having teeth pulled out, well....it just becomes weird as hell....also helps that I'm medicated as well :D

If only The Walking Dead had used more Polygons. People might have felt attached to Clementine if she had been made with eleventy-billion polygons.

So, what story did I miss? Oh btw, Jim Sterling strawman someone, that new (sarcasm).

No really Jim, stop strawmanning people.

But if Jim is strawmanning and strawmen are people. Then Jim is strawman.

To think all this time so blind, but now Æ understand


I was inspired by the ... emotions to craft this

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