If Black Isle wrote Mass Effect....

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Scenario: Looking back I see all the plot holes in Mass Effect 1 and 2. I began to wonder what it would be like if another team wrote Mass Effect.

So I ask you, if all the guys from Black Isle (now Obsidian) came in and written the story (not gameplay), would you play it? It has the basic premise of ancient reapers invading, but everything else is up to the writers.

In your opinion, would Black Isle pen a better or worse story? Who else would you allow to make Mass Effect?

Personally, I would choose Valve to write it if it wasn't the guys from Black isle.

Who would you choose? And what would be different?

Looks at everything Obsidian's done. Yes, yes I would, even DS3 had a good story. utterly bleh gameplay, but good story.

harebrained studios.. the guys making shadowrun returns and inxile entertainment the guys making wasteland 2.. now they are people who can tell stories

My experience of Black Isle is limited to Baldur's Gate II and the Fallout series, so its hard to say.

After all, BG2 was produced by Bioware and in its deep party development, multiple choice questions and all-around epicness, it is actually quite similar to the ME series. Irenicus's ruminations on life, death, and power were spell-binding (ba-dum tish!), so maybe a little more of that introspective writing wouldn't have been a bad thing.

As for the Fallout games, though they are brilliantly written they couldn't really be further removed in tone from the ME series.

I still haven't played ME3, but for what its worth what I have played so far (ie. 1 & 2) really feels like they knew what they wanted to do with the story, and did it. With that in mind its hard to imagine anyone else taking the helm, because it would entail a completely different approach (and result).

MindFragged:
My experience of Black Isle is limited to Baldur's Gate II and the Fallout series, so its hard to say.

After all, BG2 was produced by Bioware and in its deep party development, multiple choice questions and all-around epicness, it is actually quite similar to the ME series. Irenicus's ruminations on life, death, and power were spell-binding (ba-dum tish!), so maybe a little more of that introspective writing wouldn't have been a bad thing.

As for the Fallout games, though they are brilliantly written they couldn't really be further removed in tone from the ME series.

I still haven't played ME3, but for what its worth what I have played so far (ie. 1 & 2) really feels like they knew what they wanted to do with the story, and did it. With that in mind its hard to imagine anyone else taking the helm, because it would entail a completely different approach (and result).

Well to be honest the guys from Black Isle went on to make Arcanum, Planescape, and other games. I just used Black isle instead of listing every single person.

MindFragged:
My experience of Black Isle is limited to Baldur's Gate II and the Fallout series, so its hard to say.

After all, BG2 was produced by Bioware and in its deep party development, multiple choice questions and all-around epicness, it is actually quite similar to the ME series. Irenicus's ruminations on life, death, and power were spell-binding (ba-dum tish!), so maybe a little more of that introspective writing wouldn't have been a bad thing.

As for the Fallout games, though they are brilliantly written they couldn't really be further removed in tone from the ME series.

I still haven't played ME3, but for what its worth what I have played so far (ie. 1 & 2) really feels like they knew what they wanted to do with the story, and did it. With that in mind its hard to imagine anyone else taking the helm, because it would entail a completely different approach (and result).

Jon Irenicus is one of my favourite all time villians.

"I cannot be controlled." *ZAPITY SPLATITY* "I cannot be contained" *FWOOSH* "You will suffer, YOU WILL ALL SUFFER!" *BOOM*

David Warner is immense.

It would be brilliant. The character moments might be slightly less good, but everything else would've been handled better - the Rachni, the Geth/Quarian conflict, Cerberus, the nature of the Reapers, the Protheans, the Asari, EVERYTHING..

God, imagine how much better TIM would have been written.

We would also have gotten less stupid lines like "we fight or we die" or "this isn't about strategy or tactics it's about survival".

MindFragged:
My experience of Black Isle is limited to Baldur's Gate II and the Fallout series, so its hard to say.

After all, BG2 was produced by Bioware and in its deep party development, multiple choice questions and all-around epicness, it is actually quite similar to the ME series. Irenicus's ruminations on life, death, and power were spell-binding (ba-dum tish!), so maybe a little more of that introspective writing wouldn't have been a bad thing.

Baldur's Gate 2 was made by Bioware. Black Isle was only the publisher for that game. Although Bioware and Black Isle/Obsidian had very close ties back then.

This is a wet dream of mine.

Sure.
But if they were the bug testers, fuck that. Worst company ever in terms of making games work.
Looking at you, Neverwinter Nights 2 you piece of shit

hazabaza1:
Sure.
But if they were the bug testers, fuck that. Worst company ever in terms of making games work.
Looking at you, Neverwinter Nights 2 you piece of shit

To this day, I still have not been able to finish NWN2 because of bugs, no matter the number of fan patches, It simply CTDs at a randomly chosen spot near the end every time.

I was able to beat the expansions however, shitty as they were.

SajuukKhar:

hazabaza1:
Sure.
But if they were the bug testers, fuck that. Worst company ever in terms of making games work.
Looking at you, Neverwinter Nights 2 you piece of shit

To this day, I still have not been able to finish NWN2 because of bugs, no matter the number of fan patches, It simply CTDs at a randomly chosen spot near the end every time.

I was able to beat the expansions however, shitty as they were.

I haven't been able to leave the village, and I could only get close to doing that once.
Shame, because it seems really good.

hazabaza1:

I haven't been able to leave the village, and I could only get close to doing that once.
Shame, because it seems really good.

Whats worse then the bugs is how god-awfully poor the engine was optomized.

I mean the story was great, well at least the parts I got to, I heard the ending sucked, but the rest of that game was a trainwrek in every way.

Obsidian/Black Isle can write stories, but they couldn't make a working game to save their life.

The dialogue would be a bit more complex and more adult. There would be a strong older female mentor character who was a key influence on the player character. The story would be about the main character finding out who they really are and what they believe, in a world that is slightly hard to navigate. It would be cohesive but probably wouldn't feel fully fleshed out or finished.

You'd want to space your entire crew by the halfway mark.

Ultratwinkie:

MindFragged:
-snip-

Well to be honest the guys from Black Isle went on to make Arcanum, Planescape, and other games. I just used Black isle instead of listing every single person.

Fair enough :D I regret to say I have not played those games :(

demotion1:

MindFragged:
My experience of Black Isle is limited to Baldur's Gate II and the Fallout series, so its hard to say.

After all, BG2 was produced by Bioware and in its deep party development, multiple choice questions and all-around epicness, it is actually quite similar to the ME series. Irenicus's ruminations on life, death, and power were spell-binding (ba-dum tish!), so maybe a little more of that introspective writing wouldn't have been a bad thing.

Baldur's Gate 2 was made by Bioware. Black Isle was only the publisher for that game. Although Bioware and Black Isle/Obsidian had very close ties back then.

Lol. Should've checked my facts. It really shows, tbf.

It would be a much better game. Not only would the writing be better, it would feel like the plot was less railroaded.

Kahunaburger:
It would be a much better game. Not only would the writing be better, it would feel like the plot was less railroaded.

hopefully wasteland 2 isn't as railroaded as New vegas.

SajuukKhar:

Kahunaburger:
It would be a much better game. Not only would the writing be better, it would feel like the plot was less railroaded.

hopefully wasteland 2 isn't as railroaded as New vegas.

Yeah, an open world game with an open-ended plot structure is totally teh ralerodingz. I will not be satisfied until every game is a plotless, level-scaled, hiking simulator!

Kahunaburger:

Yeah, an open world game with an open-ended plot structure is totally teh ralerodingz. I will not be satisfied until every game is a plotless, level-scaled, hiking simulator!

No, a game that has every areas on either side of the road purposefully filled with monsters so much of a higher level then you that you are practically forced to walk on the road, and only the road, for the entire bottom half of the map, is railroaded.

It was a common complaint of New Vegas, that the entire bottom half the the map was one giant railroad section.

Want to go the the left? TO BAD we placed the highest level ghouls there you have no chance of killing
Want to go the the right? TO BAD we placed an entire valley of giant rabscorpions there.
Want to use that mountain pass and skip parts of the map? TO BAD we placed a cave with 4 deathclaws stand outside of right at the other end
Want to go anywhere but down the narrow road? TO DAMN BAD, come back later when you are a high level because we apparently suck so much at designing worlds we cant actually let you play content as you get to it and want you to needlessly backtrack time and time again becuase of silly level limitations we placed on areas yet gave you now clue about what the level limits are.

SajuukKhar:

Kahunaburger:

Yeah, an open world game with an open-ended plot structure is totally teh ralerodingz. I will not be satisfied until every game is a plotless, level-scaled, hiking simulator!

No a game that has every areas on either side of the road purposefully filled with monsters so much of a higher level then you that you are practically forced to walk on the road for the entire bottom half of the map, is railroaded.

It was a common complaint of New Vegas, that the entire bottom half the the map was one giant railroad section.

want to go the the left? TO BAD we placed the highest level ghouls there you have no chance of killing
Want to go the the right? TO BAD we placed an entire valley of giant rabscorpions there.
Want to go anywhere but down the narrow road? TO DAMN BAD, come back later when you are a high level.

Fallout 1 and 2 were the same way. If you west west from Vault 13, you were met with Super Mutants with miniguns, rocket launchers, rippers, and power fists.

People expected NV to follow Fallout 3 rules. It follows the ORIGINAL rules where areas were cordoned off until you were a higher level. This was to make it more realistic because you will NEVER know which areas are safe or not.

Ultratwinkie:
Fallout 1 and 2 were the same way. If you west west from Vault 13, you were met with Super Mutants with miniguns, rocket launchers, rippers, and power fists.

People expected NV to follow Fallout 3 rules. It follows the ORIGINAL rules where areas were cordoned off until you were a higher level.

That would be fine if they gave any sort of warning or hint about it.

As it stands now the game was railroaded, needlessly.

Kahunaburger:
It would be a much better game. Not only would the writing be better, it would feel like the plot was less railroaded.

And maybe not everything would be quite so exaggerated to the moral extremes of pure black and white. It kind of works in something like KotOR, because that's pretty much what the original Star Wars movies were like in some ways, but sometimes it gets hard to take seriously in these other games these days.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

And maybe not everything would be quite so exaggerated to the moral extremes of pure black and white. It kind of works in something like KotOR, because that's pretty much what the original Star Wars movies were like in some ways, but sometimes it gets hard to take seriously in these other games these days.

That is what I like about Obsidian, most of what they do is morally grey.

Admittedly though Caesar was just so damn unlikeable in New Vegas. He just came off as a dick instead having some possibly worthy goals behind his actions

SajuukKhar:

Ultratwinkie:
Fallout 1 and 2 were the same way. If you west west from Vault 13, you were met with Super Mutants with miniguns, rocket launchers, rippers, and power fists.

People expected NV to follow Fallout 3 rules. It follows the ORIGINAL rules where areas were cordoned off until you were a higher level.

That would be fine if they gave any sort of warning or hint about it.

As it stands now the game was railroaded, needlessly.

They did tell you where to go, and they did tell you the wasteland was damn dangerous so you better rely on the experienced. Although a lot of people probably chose to skip the convo and get directly to exploration, which would be a lot safer if you took Outdoorsmanship. But a lot of powergamers just skipped that skill 'entirely' and took weapons feats. Which caused their death, 50 Outdoorsmanship can save your life. 60 Smallarms skill and a pistol can extend it. ((Fallout1/2))

SajuukKhar:

Kahunaburger:

Yeah, an open world game with an open-ended plot structure is totally teh ralerodingz. I will not be satisfied until every game is a plotless, level-scaled, hiking simulator!

No, a game that has every areas on either side of the road purposefully filled with monsters so much of a higher level then you that you are practically forced to walk on the road for the entire bottom half of the map, is railroaded.

It was a common complaint of New Vegas, that the entire bottom half the the map was one giant railroad section.

Want to go the the left? TO BAD we placed the highest level ghouls there you have no chance of killing
Want to go the the right? TO BAD we placed an entire valley of giant rabscorpions there.
Want to use that mountain pass and skip parts of the map? TO BAD we placed a cave with 4 deathclaws stand outside of right at the other end
Want to go anywhere but down the narrow road? TO DAMN BAD, come back later when you are a high level because we apparently suck so much at designing worlds we cant actually let you play content as you get to it and want you to needlessly backtrack time and time again becuase of silly level limitations we placed on areas yet gave you now clue about what the level limits are.

Yeah, who do these Obsidian people think they are, letting things like "plot," "gameplay," and "world-building" get in the way of glorious hiking? It's almost as bad as when low-level characters get eaten by high-level monsters when they cross the ghostfence in Morrowind!

SajuukKhar:

Ultratwinkie:
Fallout 1 and 2 were the same way. If you west west from Vault 13, you were met with Super Mutants with miniguns, rocket launchers, rippers, and power fists.

People expected NV to follow Fallout 3 rules. It follows the ORIGINAL rules where areas were cordoned off until you were a higher level.

That would be fine if they gave any sort of warning or hint about it.

As it stands now the game was railroaded, needlessly.

*likes to immediately leave Goodsprings and run along the railroad to New Vegas' implant clinic at lv.1*

Oh, wrong kind of railroading? Well, I also like to play a game of "dodge the deathclaws" at low levels. That's fun too. :D

Ultratwinkie:
Scenario: Looking back I see all the plot holes in Mass Effect 1 and 2. I began to wonder what it would be like if another team written Mass Effect.

So I ask you, if all the guys from Black Isle (now Obsidian) came in and written the story (not gameplay), would you play it? It has the basic premise of ancient reapers invading, but everything else is up to the writers.

In your opinion, would Black Isle pen a better or worse story? Who else would you allow to make Mass Effect?

Personally, I would choose Valve to write it if it wasn't the guys from Black isle.

Who would you choose? And what would be different?

Looking back at it, anyone could have written a better story. Bioware made a vehement pile of doo doo.

So yes, I probably would have given it a try.

Nalgas D. Lemur:

Kahunaburger:
It would be a much better game. Not only would the writing be better, it would feel like the plot was less railroaded.

And maybe not everything would be quite so exaggerated to the moral extremes of pure black and white. It kind of works in something like KotOR, because that's pretty much what the original Star Wars movies were like in some ways, but sometimes it gets hard to take seriously in these other games these days.

Yeah - they certainly wouldn't have forgotten what "paragon" and "renegade" are supposed to mean between games.

Ultratwinkie:
I began to wonder what it would be like if another team written Mass Effect.

Wrote I think you will find or had written it just sounds better not that it hugely matters its just it sticks out a bit as it is.

Anyway If Black Isle/Obsidian (I dont know how much the team have changed so im just referring to them as a single entity for simplicity) did write Mass Effect I would give it a go definitely. I dont see them as brilliant story writers or anything but I do tend to enjoy what they write its just as others have pointed out making a playable game is their problem, Mixing great aspirations with piss poor execution.

In fact I would be happiest if they designed Mass Effect completely writing,locations, lore,gameplay functions etc then just got someone else to make it and test it.

Kahunaburger:
Yeah, who do these Obsidian people think they are, letting things like "plot," "gameplay," and "world-building" get in the way of glorious hiking? It's almost as bad as when low-level characters get eaten by high-level monsters when they cross the ghostfence in Morrowind!

But they told you that there was super dangerous shit behind the ghostfence, in New Vegas they tell you about the deathclaws, but not about the 90 other needlessly overpowered things they put on all the other sides.
.
.
Furthermore they could have kept the Deathclaw barrier at Sloan and removed all the other giant radscopions/Ghoul Ravers they placed in random locations, such at directly west of Primm and still guided the character down the same path.

You would still have to go south, through primm, then nipton, then Novac but there wouldn't be railroading on such grand scale.

That radiactive crater west of primm didn't hold anything story related, nor did it block you from getting anywhere important since it was at the edge of the map. Why did they need feral ghoul reavers everywhere to block it? it had nothing of value in it, and its a needlessly arbitrary denial of content.

It was so needless and pointless to block if off.

SajuukKhar:

Kahunaburger:
Yeah, who do these Obsidian people think they are, letting things like "plot," "gameplay," and "world-building" get in the way of glorious hiking? It's almost as bad as when low-level characters get eaten by high-level monsters when they cross the ghostfence in Morrowind!

but they told you that there was super dangerous shit behind the ghostfence, in New Vegas they tell you about the deathclaws, but not about the 90 other needlessly overpowered things they put on all the other sides.

Furthermore they could have kept the Deathclaw barrier at Sloan and removed all the other giant radscopions/Ghoul Ravers they placed in random locations, such at directly west of Primm and still guided the character down the same path.

Man - so much outrage over the game squishing your character for stuff like charging off into unknown areas of the wasteland and not having an exit strategy. What hath level scaling wrought?

But it really comes down to this: if I want an auto-leveled open-world treadmill, I know where to look. If I prefer my RPGs to be games, I get something from Obsidian.

Kahunaburger:
Man - so much outrage over the game squishing your character for stuff like charging off into unknown areas of the wasteland and not having an exit strategy. What hath level scaling wrought?

But it really comes down to this: if I want an auto-leveled open-world treadmill, I know where to look. If I prefer my RPGs to be games, I get something from Obsidian.

The game doesn't have to be auto-leveled, seriously your pulling shit out your ass that I didn't even make mention of to deflect from the argument.

They could have easily placed, slightly above your level, non-scaling enemies, that while challenging were beatable at level 3-5, which is what you are at when you get to Primm, instead of max level ghouls you have no chance of winning against.

There's a difference between making its challenging and then making it impossible for no reason.

Like if it blocks a pass that lets you skip half the map, that's reasonable, but for a crater of no real significance to the plot, and that doesn't let you skip or move outside of the narration zone, and that really has nothing of valve, why is it reasonable to just say "nope you cant go here" by placing absurdly over leveled enemies there?

Its such poor game design it is astounding.

SajuukKhar:

Kahunaburger:
Man - so much outrage over the game squishing your character for stuff like charging off into unknown areas of the wasteland and not having an exit strategy. What hath level scaling wrought?

But it really comes down to this: if I want an auto-leveled open-world treadmill, I know where to look. If I prefer my RPGs to be games, I get something from Obsidian.

The game doesn't have to be auto-levled, seriously your pullingshit out your ass that I didn't even make mention of to deflect from the argument.

They could have easily placed, slightly above your level, non-scaling enemies, that while challenging were beatable at level 3-5, which is what you are at when you get to Primm, instead of max level ghouls you have no chance of winning against.

There's a difference between making its challenging and then making it impossible for no reason. Like if it blocks a pass that lets you skip half the map, thats reasonable, but for a crater of no significance and that really has nothing of valve why is it reasonable to just say "nope you cant go here".

I don't get why I took damage when I jumped down a hole in Zelda. I should be able to explore what's down there! It felt like Shigeru Miyamoto slapping my hand away. That's why I only play Bethesda games and Minecraft.

EDIT:

SajuukKhar:

Its such poor game hiking sim design it is astounding.

Fixed to better reflect your argument.

Kahunaburger:
image

fixed to better represent your argument.

Furthermore my argument has nothing to do with having the entire world be a giant open-world sandbox game that you can explore every part of the moment the game starts.

The fact you are trying to make it out to be is pathetically childish.

though based on your past posts, this seems to be your common defense method.

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