Review: Alpha Protocol

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
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Review: Alpha Protocol

Alpha Protocol has plenty of great ideas. Unfortunately, it also has plenty of bugs.

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Onyx Oblivion

Borderlands Addict. Again.
Sep 9, 2008
17,032
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I will pass. I was excited. But my excitement was killed very quickly for this game as reviews pored in. For some reason, the shooting looks horrid, too. The stealth gameplay looks like it works fine, though. Especially with the dumb AI.

And with those bugs, you'd have to save every few minutes, or before attempting a hack. He really just walked into a corner like that on his own? When the controls don't even work properly something has gone wrong. Even really, really, really bad movie games at least have controls that work.
 

Sonicron

Do the buttwalk!
Mar 11, 2009
5,134
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This is pretty much what I've been expecting since the first gameplay trailer - a broken, half-arsed mess. Nice to see my suspicions validated.
 

thenumberthirteen

Unlucky for some
Dec 19, 2007
4,794
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Aww. I liked the sound of this game. An RPG that isn't all about wizards. If they patch the bugs maybe I'll rent it, or buy it cheap.
 

Chrono212

Fluttershy has a mean K:DR
May 19, 2009
1,846
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thenumberthirteen said:
Aww. I liked the sound of this game. An RPG that isn't all about wizards. If they patch the bugs maybe I'll rent it, or buy it cheap.
Same, luckily I'm out of my 'pre-order everything and anything that looks interesting' phase so I've saved some money.

Still, it looked promising :(

lol, expenses account...heh, if you?re not British then it's not as funny
 

Rainboq

New member
Nov 19, 2009
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I was kind of hoping that this would be good, now?

I'll just use any copy of this I get as a $60 coster.
 

Nimbus

Token Irish Guy
Oct 22, 2008
2,162
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I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
 

Proteus214

Game Developer
Jul 31, 2009
2,270
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Wow sounds like a serious development rush job. Bugs like that are seriously inexcusable. I can understand the shortcomings of the AI in a way, but the controller issues are a serious deal-breaker.
 

ajbell

Poor Impulse Control
Dec 6, 2007
33
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Nice video supplement, by the way. Felt like an actual addition tot he review, rather than someone reading out the main points over a demo of the game.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
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Nimbus said:
I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
Quite possibly, yeah. And yes, he really does just go wandering off on his own from time to time. The controller will also just plain stop working - you'll be moving the blocks around to hack a computer and suddenly, nothing works. Very disappointing.

As for the shooting, I could never get the sensitivity to a place where it felt right, so I was constantly swinging back and forth with the reticle. Again, possibly just a bad porting issue.
 

tomvw

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Feb 5, 2009
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Nimbus said:
I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
Same here, haven't noticed any of the visual glitches or control problems in the PC version, just some jittery framerates.
But again, the retarded AI does ruin the experience sometimes.
 

kasperbbs

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Dec 27, 2009
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I have it on PC and controls work just fine for me ,except that it sometimes lags when you move mouse around (my pc is pretty powerful ,im not the only one with that problem) and shooting mechanics are terrible ,60% chance that you will miss a headshot even if your target isnt moving and he is pretty close + other problems that the review mentioned. All in all its playable ,i liked the story so far and im a major rpg junkie so i like it ,its not great but i dont wanna play mass effect 2 for the third time yet.
 

Delusibeta

Reachin' out...
Mar 7, 2010
2,594
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Nimbus said:
I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
That post kind of contradicts Rock Paper Shotgun's [http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2010/05/31/an-hour-with-alpha-protocol/] post-release playtest. Although maybe it's a case of "it's designed for a 360 controller, not mouse + keyboard".

It does look like a bad port... from the 360 version.
 

The Zango

Resident stoner and Yognaught
Apr 30, 2009
3,706
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Tactical, espionage, RPG? Yes please!

Alpha protocol? Yes please!

Branching plot that is affected by your actions? Where do I buy it?!

Obsidian? Oh shit....
 

PedroSteckecilo

Mexican Fugitive
Feb 7, 2008
6,732
0
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Dammit Obsidian! Why ya gotta let a brother down! I TRUSTED you! I TRUSTED YOU!

In all seriousness, I frequently trust Susan Arendt's reviews (unlike those of a certain be-hatted brit in Brisbane, it is Brisbane right? or was it Melbourne... dammit) and hence I will accept that Alpha Protocol probably isn't worth my money.
 

Myiven

New member
Apr 23, 2008
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I'm going to go against the grain here. I like this game.

I won't defend the flaws, but the only ones I've run into are occasional enemy AI glitches (I've seen bad guys stuck in doors twice total since I started playing, and I've put about five hours in) and frequent texture loading glitches.

The graphic loading problems bother me, but the gameplay is fun and challenging and has managed to successfully build tension. The hacking and lock picking is always a welcome boon.
I'll add a disclaimer: I am a horrible twitch gamer. I suspect that I'm in the bottom 10% of gamers when it comes to raw skill, so the bad AI is probably right at my level.


My favorite feature is the conversation system. This is the first time I've seen believable conversation trees in a video game. Rather than the other characters staring dumbly while you select from a dialog list, you have a limited window to select an attitude. I really want to see this concept expanded in other games. Bioware, I'm looking at you guys to pick up on this for ME3.
 

Woodsey

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Aug 9, 2009
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I was really looking forward to this. Next time Obsidian have a great idea that they can hand it over to Bioware so that we're not all sorely disappointed.

Ah well, it's only £25 on Steam so assuming it has the shit patched out of it I might buy it. I mean, you can correct most of the problems (like the peashooter pistols, grahpical glitches, etc.) in the patch.

Also, I doubt anyone's played both versions but the PC version does seem to have received higher scores - is it much better? It's just that most reviews are done on consoles (to my great annoyance) and it'd be nice to know if not all complaints are present on the PC version.
 

Ewyx

New member
Dec 3, 2008
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Have the PC version. I love the game, however all the reviews are pointing towards me having to dislike the game. The PC version isn't as glitchy/buggy. The thing with this game is, it has nothing in it that's wrong. Only things that require a bit more polish.

However, as a poster above me noticed. This game has some amazing concepts. Concepts BioWare should learn from. But the presentation is just amazing. Honestly, I feel bad that the game has negative feedback, since I'm actually enjoying it, but maybe I can just overlook the flaws.
 

Chas Blackwell

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Jul 12, 2006
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I'm finding this incredibly frustrating, having preordered it through Steam and I still can't get it to even start up, let alone deal with the bugs. I preordered largely because I'd seen a talk from last summer by Chris Avellone on the dialogue and storytelling system the game uses (which even the most damning reviews seem to say is pretty stellar), and honestly I'd even have been happy with something that was a flawed gem, much like how KotOR2 was. However, a game that I can't even get to start is pretty ridiculous -- I don't think I have had this problem with anything I bought through Steam ever, and so far nothing that's been suggested by technical support has worked to fix it. :/

To be fair, I suspect my issue is actually something with the DRM, since I don't even get the prompt to enter my activation code when I try to launch it, but that doesn't really make it any better. I've had really high hopes for Obsidian, just from their pedigree: KotOR2 really was excellent until the rushed-out last act, and I actually applied for a job there years ago and got some of the most thoughtful feedback I've ever gotten on a practical test. Unfortunately, my experience with Alpha Protocol has made me reconsider preordering New Vegas, which should be a sure bet. I'm sure I'll end up getting it (and I suspect a game built from an existing engine should be a bit more robust), but I'll probably wait for the reviews before picking it up.
 

Ancientgamer

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Jan 16, 2009
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On the one hand, all I knew about this game were how badly its advertisements sucked. So finding out it's at least better than the shovelware it appeared to be is a huge step up.
 

MercurySteam

Tastes Like Chicken!
Apr 11, 2008
4,948
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Alpha Protocol didn't particularly scream out at me and I'm not quite surprised either. Oh well, better luck next time.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
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kasperbbs said:
I have it on PC and controls work just fine for me ,except that it sometimes lags when you move mouse around (my pc is pretty powerful ,im not the only one with that problem) and shooting mechanics are terrible ,60% chance that you will miss a headshot even if your target isnt moving and he is pretty close + other problems that the review mentioned. All in all its playable ,i liked the story so far and im a major rpg junkie so i like it ,its not great but i dont wanna play mass effect 2 for the third time yet.
I actually really enjoy it, too, but I just plain can't recommend someone pay full price for it. The RPG parts really are very satisfying, but everything else...yeeeesh....I mean, only being able to use the sniper rifle in specific spots because you can't carry it with you? Lame. Sorry, just plain lame.
 

Brainst0rm

New member
Apr 8, 2010
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Sad to hear. Obsidian doesn't have such a great track record, does it? And they've just signed on to help with the Wheel of Time RPG...oh dear...
 

Daemascus

WAAAAAAAAAGHHH!!!!
Mar 6, 2010
792
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This sounded like it could have been really fun. To bad it has so many issues.
 

mokes310

New member
Oct 13, 2008
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I'll be getting this game from Gamefly in about six hours, so we'll see. As for the mysterious wandering off glitch, I experienced that glitch in a great many PS3 games, so I'm a little curious if it's indicative of the game or the console. In any case, it probably explains why this game was so heavily marketed.
 

Davrel

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Jan 31, 2010
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Could not most of the issues be fixed with a big fat patch?

Was kind of tempted to get this, but if it really is currently as broken as people say it is, I think I'll hold on to my money.

And heh, expenses account - as an earlier poster said, its quite funny if you're British.
 

sougo13

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Sep 11, 2009
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Wow, apart from the bugs, I actually find this game quite interesting. Does any know if there is a major patch coming up so I might consider getting it?
 

Void(null)

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Dec 10, 2008
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Obsidian Entertainment does it again!

Knights of the Old Republic II: Missing the last 1/4 of the game.
Neverwinter Nights 2: A frustrating camera you had to fight with at all times, poor level design, bad AI and the game is missing its ending.
Alien the RPG: Canceled
Alpha Protocol: Buggy, poor camera, awful control's, broken AI.

A company is supposed to make better games as time goes on, not worse.

So who is looking forward to Fallout: New Vegas? After Alpha Protocol, I'm not.
 

rembrandtqeinstein

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Sep 4, 2009
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Nuts I was hoping this one would be a spiritual successor to Deus Ex...alas it too has been hit with the Obsidian Curse.
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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Playing on the 360 version:
The only "Mike wanders off" I've experienced actually came from the thumb-stick on my controller sticking.

Enemy AI wasn't even /that/ bad. Pumping Stealth and getting the Evasion skill was actually a lifesaver at many points (As was getting Awareness in "always on" mode.) because often the enemy would spot me out of the corner of his eye with some vector I hadn't even considered.
It was pretty common (before I learned and purchased "Reduce enemy sight range" gear and leveled Stealth like Nobody's business) to see baddies go into full-blown alert mode because they saw me taking down their buddy from across the room.

The gunplay was... well... It was pretty shitty. For a spy, Mike seems ridiculously inaccurate until far, far too late in the game. Only one weapon class is anything resembling covert (the pistol), and while you could buy "Silent bullets" for the Assault Rifle, they're prohibitively expensive, which is a shame, because it's the only thing that gives you accuracy to a range beyond five meters in the early game. (This is bollocks, as apparently, Mike can't hit a slow-moving, man-sized target at thirty-five meters in the early game, despite all incarnations of him being listed as a decent marksmen.)
That said, Leveling the pistol eventually lead to his ability to shoot like somebody who actually knows the difference between the end of the gun you hold and the one that makes people dead. And it gave you the Chain Shot skill, which, next to Awareness, (Which, as alluded to, you can get in 'always on' mode anyway by leveling Stealth) is likely the best skill in the game, and certainly invaluable for boss fights (Hint! The critical hit timer doesn't decrease and you can put multiple bullets in one target. Do the math.)
I actually enjoyed the game quite throughly on the 360, and am genuinely disappointed to hear that the other versions weren't up to snuff.
 

Jared

The British Paladin
Jul 14, 2009
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Id pretty much agree. It could have been so much greater but it just failed to hit the mark
 

Yassen

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Apr 5, 2008
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I got the 360 version and I haven't had any trouble with bugs or crashes, the only weird thing that's happened was when I began to climb down a ladder the same time a guard was climbing up and Mike suddenly began floating in midair.

I would agree with the retarded AI, and the stealth skill tree just breaks the game difficulty. With enough points you can turn invisible for 20 seconds and then one hit kill every guard in a room and none of them even think "hey our fellow guard was just stabbed in the neck by some invisible force, maybe we should do something?"

Don't even get me started on the gun targeting. You have to train it on a target for a few seconds before you'll even have a chance of hitting them and even then I ended up blowing a dozen bullets at one guy and not hitting him once.

But despite the frustrations I'm still enjoying it. The choices you make in the game feel like they have a real impact and can dramatically alter the story. Even a single dialogue choice that you have about 2 seconds to think over can make a huge difference. It's a great system that puts you under a lot of pressure, coupled with the genuine moral ambiguity of almost every single situation. There are parts that make me want to hate it, but others that I feel make up for it. So I'm kinda mixed about what I think of it. Great review by the way susan, but because of the negative reviews this has been getting you can bet it'll damage the sales for Fallout new vegas.
 

Vet2501

Mighty Morphin' Power Ranger
Nov 9, 2009
411
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Well I'm still enjoying it (playing PC version), and apart from a wee bit of lag I haven't run into any of the major glitches you were on about, the minor ones were sorted by turning off the motion blur.

Maybe PS3 version is just a bad port.
 
Apr 28, 2008
14,634
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So its another one of Obsidian's "close but no cigar" games eh?
Shame. I really wanted this to be good. This does not give me hope for New Vegas.

Damn, if only Obsidian could get a bit more time on their games.

Kotor 2 could have easily surpassed the first. But seeing how many bugs were in it, how much they cut... its just sad.

And now this. Damn...
 

Chipperz

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Apr 27, 2009
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Honestly, the only problem I've had so far is in Moscow (Well, two problems, hearing it pronounced Moss-cow, despite probably being right, rubs me the wrong way seeing how used I am to hearing Moss-koe)

The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.

Apart from that? Great game.

EDIT - I've heard it said a few times that it's this generation's Vampire the Masquerade : Bloodlines. I'd agree with that, if I'm being honest.
 

The Root Beer Guy

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Apr 1, 2010
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I'm rather enjoying Alpha Protocol. It's not as good as it should have been, but that's Obsidian for you. I wouldn't recommend purchasing it, but it is definitely worth a rental.
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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Yassen said:
I would agree with the retarded AI, and the stealth skill tree just breaks the game difficulty. With enough points you can turn invisible for 20 seconds and then one hit kill every guard in a room and none of them even think "hey our fellow guard was just stabbed in the neck by some invisible force, maybe we should do something?"
Funny, even with all my nifty sight-range reducing gear, Guards STILL saw their buddies fall down, and they still ran over to investigate, which I actually used to my benefit a few times before my Stealth was leveled to "ridiculous" to pull a guard away from a camera or a turret or even out of the sight range of another guard.
 

TheAmazingTGIF

Friday Only Superhero
Aug 5, 2009
532
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I think this video shows my Ms. Arendt is my favorite reviewer.

I am so sad for this game being terrible. I was looking forward to it for soooo long. It had so much going for it. Perhaps I will just get it on the clearance rack at the end of the summer.
Now back to Red Dead.
 

Nimzabaat

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Feb 1, 2010
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PS3 must be a bad port, i haven't encountered any of the problems the reviewer had in the Xbox 360 version. Actually i haven't noticed any bugs in the AI that are unique to AP (enemies think they are in cover when they're not fully covered, like Mass Effect, Army of Two (both) Gears of War (both) etc etc etc, just for some reason they're hating on AP for this). Graphics are dated but that's my only complaint so far.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
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Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Yeaaaaahhhh....there's a lot of that in the game. There's another boss fight (I won't spoil it and say with who) that's even more "are you serious?" You just kind of have to roll your eyes and shrug it off.
 

Lolth17

Queen of the Underdark
Nov 10, 2009
445
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Is anyone else scared to death for Fallout: New Vegas? I was really excited until I heard Obsidian got their hands on it. Have they ever made a game that wasn't damn near fatally broken? At least Bethesda's many glitches didn't actually take control away from you...
 

Vierran

None here.
Oct 11, 2009
276
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0
Having now logged in over 50 hours and completing 3 playthroughs (PC on steam) i have found the game quite enjoyable, that's not to say it isn't buggy because it is.

The graphics are dated but that is not a deal breaker for me, there are glitches though textures taking time to load in especially at the market and the occasional jittery frame rate are probably the main ones to mention nothing too game breaking and often not noticed, i have not noticed any control issues except when the frame rate gets jittery on the occasion which will cause you to be pointing in strange directions but nothing too big.

The AI does some odd things such as stop pathing if you move to a different area and come back, not to mention that if you invest in stealth and you have the right armour you can sneak up to them on their side, the occasional enemy that sticks halfway through a wall or door.

On the shooting side (i will say that it could have been a lot better and needs polishing at the least), you must invest in points in your weapon of choice in order to be able to crit them from afar as not waiting for crit shots leads to a ridiculous amount of missed shots, the assault rifle isn't too bad at this as it does fairly often hit but the SMG can miss from point blank range whic is ridiculous; the shotgun will hit almost every time but its damage is too low to be usefull unless again you invest upon which the knockback effect is quite nice; lastly there is the pistol which has so far proven the best weapon especially when invested in, once enough points are put in the range at which you are able to crit increases and you get a skill that allows you to do it from cover so unless the enemy charges which it does sometimes you can sit and kill everything in range.

The voice work in the game is superb and the dialogue in general is great leading to a good story which some great options that have consequences later on.

In all i found it an enjoyable game despite the flaws which it does have and well worth the $80 i spent to play it but at the same time it is not for everyone especially if any of the flaws i mentioned ruin the game for you.

I will end in saying that i enjoyed this game and the comments i make are my opinion which may be biased :p
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Maybe it was the fact that I purchased the "Poisoned cocaine" intel piece before the mission, but I had no "Immune to bullets" problem. I just ran around for a bit while Chain Shot cooled down and shot him a second (Okay, fith-through-sixth, but that's being technical, here) time.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
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So who is looking forward to Fallout: New Vegas? After Alpha Protocol, I'm not.
It's not like the same team is working on 2 projects at the same time though. New Vegas might just be good.
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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Susan Arendt said:
Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Yeaaaaahhhh....there's a lot of that in the game. There's another boss fight (I won't spoil it and say with who) that's even more "are you serious?" You just kind of have to roll your eyes and shrug it off.
... The one with the helicopter at the endgame which takes no less than five direct hits with shoulder-mounted missile launchers, along with a peppering of assault rifle and pistol rounds that somehow, despite being a Blackhawk, is not only armed, but armed with missiles that are able to lock onto your /body heat/ and track you, insta-killing you if you're not wearing the highest grade armour in the game or your haven't invested ridiculous amounts of points in the toughness skill?
 

WeAreJimbo

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May 17, 2010
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I played through the PS3 version and had no problems either. So whats that all about?
 

Cake-Pie

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kasperbbs said:
I have it on PC and controls work just fine for me ,except that it sometimes lags when you move mouse around (my pc is pretty powerful ,im not the only one with that problem) and shooting mechanics are terrible ,60% chance that you will miss a headshot even if your target isnt moving and he is pretty close + other problems that the review mentioned. All in all its playable ,i liked the story so far and im a major rpg junkie so i like it ,its not great but i dont wanna play mass effect 2 for the third time yet.
Is this a product of aim issues or it this because of RPG specs for that weapon being too low?

I haven't played Alpha Protocol yet, and I'm so sad that it's a buggy mess. I was excited to play it also. I WANTED IT TO BE GOOD! ): Of course, maybe the PC version is salvageable with a patch?

Is it so wrong to want to be Sam Fischer with RPG stats and dialogue trees?
 

Shoggoth2588

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Aug 31, 2009
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I was very weary when I first heard of this title and what it wanted to be. Knowing who were making it only made me a bit more apprehensive about it. If I am able to rent it I will probably do that but I didn't plan on buying this game and I was sure there would be issues with it [not that everybody is experiencing those same issues but, dumb AI is dumb AI]

This game did have potential though and it's too bad it was rushed out. What ever happened to hard work in the industry?
 

Chipperz

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Apr 27, 2009
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Susan Arendt said:
Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Yeaaaaahhhh....there's a lot of that in the game. There's another boss fight (I won't spoil it and say with who) that's even more "are you serious?" You just kind of have to roll your eyes and shrug it off.
Uuuurgh... Tell me it's not in Taipei, I'm there now (wanted to meet up with Scarlet again, doesn't look like that's happening), and I could do with a segment that doesn't have an uber-boss. It utterly destroys the atmosphere the rest of the game builds up.

If I'm being honest, I think Sis was about the perfect power level for bosses in a game that's trying to be realistic. Great use of cover and her guns, but doesn't take too much damage. Of course, I'm also aware that I'm willing to overlook a great many things when it comes to a cute late-teens girl with purple hair, tattoos and just the right number of piercings :p

Thanatos5150 said:
Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Maybe it was the fact that I purchased the "Poisoned cocaine" intel piece before the mission, but I had no "Immune to bullets" problem. I just ran around for a bit while Chain Shot cooled down and shot him a second (Okay, fith-through-sixth, but that's being technical, here) time.
After many, many, many, many, many, many deaths, I eventually ended him with two Chain Shot's to the face. The problem was dodging his menials while I lined up my gun. Eventually I got so used to the numbers that would come out of each side door that I could kill the majority of them before they appeared, but until then? Disproportionately hard and flow-breaking boss.

Also, the order you do missions seems to be pretty important, I'm wondering if I didn't get the Posioned Cocaine intel because I hadn't done another mission - any chance you'd done Rome or Taipei first? I seem to be getting N22-specific stuff in Taipei now I helped them in Moscow...
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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Chipperz said:
Susan Arendt said:
Chipperz said:
Thanatos5150 said:
Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Maybe it was the fact that I purchased the "Poisoned cocaine" intel piece before the mission, but I had no "Immune to bullets" problem. I just ran around for a bit while Chain Shot cooled down and shot him a second (Okay, fith-through-sixth, but that's being technical, here) time.
After many, many, many, many, many, many deaths, I eventually ended him with two Chain Shot's to the face. The problem was dodging his menials while I lined up my gun. Eventually I got so used to the numbers that would come out of each side door that I could kill the majority of them before they appeared, but until then? Disproportionately hard and flow-breaking boss.

Also, the order you do missions seems to be pretty important, I'm wondering if I didn't get the Posioned Cocaine intel because I hadn't done another mission - any chance you'd done Rome or Taipei first? I seem to be getting G22-specific stuff in Taipei now I helped them in Moscow...
The long version of it is: I went to Taipei first and got in good with a certain delusional psychopath. And whilst I got some G22 stuff in Taipei, I got a great deal more in Moscow, even going as far as having Albatross e my handler for one mission, and the conversation about me not killing Sis when I had the chance went smoothl, with lots of Mike going "I didn't want to kill her if she was cavorting around with your goons."
Come to think of it, compared to Taipei and Moscow's interactions, especially with G22, Rome feels kinda tacked-on.

Also - I beat Brayko the first time around.
 

TheDoctor455

Friendly Neighborhood Time Lord
Apr 1, 2009
12,257
0
0
CloudKiller said:
Poor Obsidian, and they try so hard....
Ehh...
They'll probably patch this up at some point...
although... its worth noting that the PC version's biggest problem is getting the mouse to cooperate... the bloody thing controls the camera, half of the hacking mini-game, and aims the sniper-rifle... all of which it will invariably erratically fluster about and even worse, will randomly jerk around.
I would happily sacrifice the "precision aiming" that we PC gamers are promised if we could avoid this shit.

But... overall... I rather like this game.
The story is well written and well acted.
The gameplay... while not free of its issues... manages to be pretty fun.
 

nipsen

New member
Sep 20, 2008
521
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0
Susan Arendt said:
Nimbus said:
I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
Quite possibly, yeah. And yes, he really does just go wandering off on his own from time to time. The controller will also just plain stop working - you'll be moving the blocks around to hack a computer and suddenly, nothing works. Very disappointing.

As for the shooting, I could never get the sensitivity to a place where it felt right, so I was constantly swinging back and forth with the reticle. Again, possibly just a bad porting issue.
...sort of sounds a bit like the re-sync bug for the wireless controllers. It's not easy to replicate it, but it happens if you switch controllers, and have some interference going on (like wifi, rockband controllers, other bluetooth devices). It starts, and then it's sluggish until you restart the box.

(Doesn't happen often, but it happens... Sony just seems more interested in sending people more junk-mail than fixing things like that..).
 

JourneyThroughHell

New member
Sep 21, 2009
5,010
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0
Susan Arendt said:
there are far, far better spy games out there.
Any recommendations?
OT: Ah, just what I expected. Weak, weak gameplay but RPG elements good enough for me to constitute a "wait-for-price-drop".
 

Yossarian1507

New member
Jan 20, 2010
681
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I'm playing Alpha Protocol on PS3. The game never froze on my system, controller works just fine, Mike is not moving on his own. I'm really surprised that kind of bugs exist.

I actually love this game. Beat it once, now I'm beating it as a Recruit on Hard difficulty mode. Stealth is just fine on Hard, AI is not that dumb anymore (still stupid but not as much as on Normal), and after putting several skill points in Assault Rifles, the shooting part is now pretty comfortable as well.

Minor graphic bugs are not bothering me.

And choices system? Dialog system? Perks system? Reputation system? Brilliant and awesome. I do not regret any of those 60$ (after revaluing from Polish currency) i paid for the game. I feel I'll beat it at least few more times.

I'm really surprised so many reviews are so negative. It surely isn't 'BEST RPG EVAR!', there are some glaring flaws, but 2 stars for game someone is actually enjoying? I always thought 2 stars mean 'Horrible. There are worse things on the Earth, but this is really close', and not 'nice but really flawed'.

I think, in a year AP will become a typical case of cult classic. And I know already I'll be one of leaders of that cult...

Don't let your hopes down on it, folks. It really isn't THAT bad. Rent it if you don't want to buy it, but at least give it a chance.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
Brainst0rm said:
Sad to hear. Obsidian doesn't have such a great track record, does it? And they've just signed on to help with the Wheel of Time RPG...oh dear...
abandon all hope, ye who get excited.


I was thinking about getting this game, partly from the backstory and RPG aspects, but then I got Red Dead Redemption, and I forgot to pick up my pre-order.

now I know just to get that dropped.

but I hope they realize how much of a mess the game is and get some patches in place. Also, are the levels mainly linear? that could explain why the sniper rifle could only be used in a certain spot.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
Yossarian1507 said:
I'm playing Alpha Protocol on PS3. The game never froze on my system, controller works just fine, Mike is not moving on his own. I'm really surprised that kind of bugs exist.

I actually love this game. Beat it once, now I'm beating it as a Recruit on Hard difficulty mode. Stealth is just fine on Hard, AI is not that dumb anymore (still stupid but not as much as on Normal), and after putting several skill points in Assault Rifles, the shooting part is now pretty comfortable as well.

Minor graphic bugs are not bothering me.

And choices system? Dialog system? Perks system? Reputation system? Brilliant and awesome. I do not regret any of those 60$ (after revaluing from Polish currency) i paid for the game. I feel I'll beat it at least few more times.

I'm really surprised so many reviews are so negative. It surely isn't 'BEST RPG EVAR!', there are some glaring flaws, but 2 stars for game someone is actually enjoying? I always thought 2 stars mean 'Horrible. There are worse things on the Earth, but this is really close', and not 'nice but really flawed'.

I think, in a year AP will become a typical case of cult classic. And I know already I'll be one of leaders of that cult...

Don't let your hopes down on it, folks. It really isn't THAT bad. Rent it if you don't want to buy it, but at least give it a chance.
If it weren't for the bugs, I'd have given the game a 3. It's still only half a game, but there's fun to be had. But given how broken it is, I had to mark it down.

Also, just because I enjoy a game, that doesn't mean the game is good. When reviewing a game, you have to keep the greater audience in mind. Sure, I enjoy that the AI is so stupid they never hear me coming, because I'm really lousy at stealth, but will the typical person looking for a fun spy experience feel the same way? Probably not. And while I might be willing to put up with intermittent control issues because I find the RPG elements to be a hoot, it's unreasonable to expect the same of someone else. All I can do is tell people that these things happen and let them decide how to proceed.
 

Cliffie

New member
Nov 25, 2009
60
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I've got the game, and it's alright. Finished it a couple of days ago mainly 'cause I forced myself to play through the game 'cause I had been looking forward to it for so long. It's a bloody shame it turned out this way it had TONS of potential.
 

Tarakos

New member
May 21, 2009
359
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I dunno. I find that sometimes I like a game that isn't well received. I'll still try it just to be sure.
 

Ilosia

The faceless
Mar 10, 2009
94
0
0
All these bugs being mentioned in the reviews really surprise me, playing on the PC the only problems I've noticed is occasionally when up against a wall the textures of it will jump in front of the screen (rectified by moving away from that section), inconsistent AI(sometimes they'll completely ignore the corpse right in front of them other times they'll rush over from the other end of the room and set the entire area on alert and for some reason the invisibility skill doesn't switch off if you use a stealth take-down (if it's intentional that's rather poor game design.

I've never had an occasion where the enemies couldn't spot me if they were looking directly my way which made the auto invisibility 'panic button' a life saver, and it can be fun to just try and ignore them entirely, slipping through the breaks in their patrols.
That said gunplay is horrible and finding sections where they force you to break stealth despite it being otherwise possible to get through using non gun skills only. The AI seems to have been an attempt to avoid the excessively punitive systems that some stealth games have put ended up going too far back.
The game may not have the most polish around but it didn't have the biggest budget around either, with someone like Bioware I wouldn't let this fly but for a more minor company like Obsidian this does get a pass since the game remains enjoyable
 

templargunman

New member
Oct 23, 2008
208
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0
I find it amusing that the game that is spamming ads all over the site got a bad review by the site. Also, good job escapist, you have honor.
 

Actual

New member
Jun 24, 2008
1,220
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I am playing this on the PC and loving it! No, it is not polished, if minor bugs annoy you give it a miss.

If you love RPGs and story based games play this now.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
This isn't worth the full retail price. A girl literally went beserk when she found out, I warned her because I had first-hand experience with the game.

Either way, the premise and potential was great..But it lacks the execution. A waste of good money if you ask me. Not that I paid it, I visited my friend with his PS3 copy.
 

Remove this account

New member
Mar 22, 2004
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Not surprised since Obsidian did a horrible job with KOTOR 2. At least they are a consistently buggy and unimpressive studio. ;)
 

Deofuta

New member
Nov 10, 2009
1,099
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thenumberthirteen said:
Aww. I liked the sound of this game. An RPG that isn't all about wizards. If they patch the bugs maybe I'll rent it, or buy it cheap.
Have you tried Borderlands? Or perhaps Fallout 3?

There are plenty of RPGs not involving fantasy...
 

dalek sec

Leader of the Cult of Skaro
Jul 20, 2008
10,237
0
0
thenumberthirteen said:
Aww. I liked the sound of this game. An RPG that isn't all about wizards. If they patch the bugs maybe I'll rent it, or buy it cheap.
Me too, I was really hoping this game wouldn't suck... guess that's what I get for getting my hopes up.
 

yoyo13rom

New member
Oct 19, 2009
1,004
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Dam it! You make it sound a lot better than other sites do.
Now I'm totally on the fence. I can't(or at least I don't know anyone how'd) retail it.
And my budget is not so good at the moment(I can afford one full priced game).
I'd only buy it for the RPG and story, but the gameplay sounded a lot more horrible on other sites.
Arrghh, I think I'll wait this one out...
 

Yossarian1507

New member
Jan 20, 2010
681
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0
Susan Arendt said:
If it weren't for the bugs, I'd have given the game a 3. It's still only half a game, but there's fun to be had. But given how broken it is, I had to mark it down.

Also, just because I enjoy a game, that doesn't mean the game is good. When reviewing a game, you have to keep the greater audience in mind. Sure, I enjoy that the AI is so stupid they never hear me coming, because I'm really lousy at stealth, but will the typical person looking for a fun spy experience feel the same way? Probably not. And while I might be willing to put up with intermittent control issues because I find the RPG elements to be a hoot, it's unreasonable to expect the same of someone else. All I can do is tell people that these things happen and let them decide how to proceed.
Uhm... Games are supposed to be an enjoyment. So, if you're enjoying the game then yes - it is good. At least for you, despite every bug or bad mechanic you'll encounter. If you're having fun - mission accomplished.

I'm not going to argue that low score anymore even though I completely don't agree with it. Situations like that are the main reason why I think any game scoring should be blasted into space. If I didn't already buy AP right after release, I would probably watch the video supplement first (as always), then after first page my thoughts would be 'ok, as I expected. Game full of bugs, but quite enjoyable, and if the RPG elements are great, that's more than convincing. I should buy this game', and then comes page 2 and 'WHOA WTF? 2 stars? 4/10? How? Damn, I hoped it will be at least slightly enjoyable...'

Every gamer should seek through the words if either the game is good for him or not. Locking the opinion in 5 or 10 or even 100 point scale is sometimes really hurting very interesting releases, like this one, because lazy most people will only look at the mark first, and others will have their opinions colored while reading the review, even if the words in it are not really indicating such a low score.
 

GuiltBlade

New member
Nov 6, 2009
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So basically its obsidian doing their usual job of borrowing another companies system (in this case it looks like the same thing Bioware used for Mass Effect), and then half finish a game on it before releasing it.

First off, a lot of it looks exactly like Mass Effect, pick your background, alter appearance, boost stats (in the same menu system as Mass Effect) modify load out with fifty slightly different ad ons Etc.

Secondly can obsidian please release a game for once which isn't still in the early beta stage? KoTOR 2? Neverwinter Nights 2? No? They can make a good game, as evidenced by the demo's released as full games but they just can't seem to get round to making the game fully functional, or just cut out half the content to save time and so doing ruin the plot line.
This is the reason that people here call them Obsidibug
 

Darth Jerak

New member
Nov 19, 2009
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It is really funny that while I was watching the video, the pop up ads where all for Alpha Protocol. Even the ad spot seems slapped together and half made.
 

benbenthegamerman

New member
May 10, 2009
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Rainboq said:
I was kind of hoping that this would be good, now?

I'll just use any copy of this I get as a $60 coster.
im sorry, i was just going to agree with this when i saw you have the worlds most badass avatar. cinema snob in kickassia ftw.
 

Actual

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Jun 24, 2008
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Chipperz said:
Susan Arendt said:
Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Yeaaaaahhhh....there's a lot of that in the game. There's another boss fight (I won't spoil it and say with who) that's even more "are you serious?" You just kind of have to roll your eyes and shrug it off.
Uuuurgh... Tell me it's not in Taipei, I'm there now (wanted to meet up with Scarlet again, doesn't look like that's happening), and I could do with a segment that doesn't have an uber-boss. It utterly destroys the atmosphere the rest of the game builds up.

If I'm being honest, I think Sis was about the perfect power level for bosses in a game that's trying to be realistic. Great use of cover and her guns, but doesn't take too much damage. Of course, I'm also aware that I'm willing to overlook a great many things when it comes to a cute late-teens girl with purple hair, tattoos and just the right number of piercings :p

Thanatos5150 said:
Chipperz said:
The Konstantin boss fight. Apparently, doing Blow makes you immune to bullets, and a history of carving up unarmed civilians that have been tied down means that he can instantly block and counter every blow from a skilled martial artist? I think I had about four ranks on my pistol at that point and a maxed out Martial Arts tree - I'm not a fan of a game telling me I can choose how to play the game, then shoving me into a situation that I can't talk, stealth or fist fight my way out of when that's what I've specialised in.
Maybe it was the fact that I purchased the "Poisoned cocaine" intel piece before the mission, but I had no "Immune to bullets" problem. I just ran around for a bit while Chain Shot cooled down and shot him a second (Okay, fith-through-sixth, but that's being technical, here) time.
After many, many, many, many, many, many deaths, I eventually ended him with two Chain Shot's to the face. The problem was dodging his menials while I lined up my gun. Eventually I got so used to the numbers that would come out of each side door that I could kill the majority of them before they appeared, but until then? Disproportionately hard and flow-breaking boss.

Also, the order you do missions seems to be pretty important, I'm wondering if I didn't get the Posioned Cocaine intel because I hadn't done another mission - any chance you'd done Rome or Taipei first? I seem to be getting N22-specific stuff in Taipei now I helped them in Moscow...
How!!??
I have the rat intel but it just made him angry and chase me with his knives. I spent two minutes just running away from him when he caught me and sliced me to death in seconds. I think the problem may be that I'm a stealth character and only have the lowest lvl of of chain shot and precision firing. So far in my fight there are no additional enemies, just me and Brayko. But I did stealth in so maybe that's why.

Once he snorts the poisoned coke I just needed to keep running round the centre obstacle for long enough he eventually has a mini heart attack from the poison giving you a second to line up a headshot and then he's chasing you again. When he started shooting me I ducked behind cover and activated the cloak to pinch another head shot, rinse and repeat till dead. At first look it seemed impossible. I never had any additional enemies during the fight, that would have screwed me.
 

Rainboq

New member
Nov 19, 2009
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benbenthegamerman said:
Rainboq said:
I was kind of hoping that this would be good, now?

I'll just use any copy of this I get as a $60 coster.
im sorry, i was just going to agree with this when i saw you have the worlds most badass avatar. cinema snob in kickassia ftw.
Wow, your like the tenth person to say that...

GO CINEMA SNOB!
 

qwagor

New member
Mar 18, 2009
24
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0
Yossarian1507 said:
Susan Arendt said:
If it weren't for the bugs, I'd have given the game a 3. It's still only half a game, but there's fun to be had. But given how broken it is, I had to mark it down.

Also, just because I enjoy a game, that doesn't mean the game is good. When reviewing a game, you have to keep the greater audience in mind. Sure, I enjoy that the AI is so stupid they never hear me coming, because I'm really lousy at stealth, but will the typical person looking for a fun spy experience feel the same way? Probably not. And while I might be willing to put up with intermittent control issues because I find the RPG elements to be a hoot, it's unreasonable to expect the same of someone else. All I can do is tell people that these things happen and let them decide how to proceed.
Uhm... Games are supposed to be an enjoyment. So, if you're enjoying the game then yes - it is good. At least for you, despite every bug or bad mechanic you'll encounter. If you're having fun - mission accomplished.

I'm not going to argue that low score anymore even though I completely don't agree with it. Situations like that are the main reason why I think any game scoring should be blasted into space. If I didn't already buy AP right after release, I would probably watch the video supplement first (as always), then after first page my thoughts would be 'ok, as I expected. Game full of bugs, but quite enjoyable, and if the RPG elements are great, that's more than convincing. I should buy this game', and then comes page 2 and 'WHOA WTF? 2 stars? 4/10? How? Damn, I hoped it will be at least slightly enjoyable...'

Every gamer should seek through the words if either the game is good for him or not. Locking the opinion in 5 or 10 or even 100 point scale is sometimes really hurting very interesting releases, like this one, because lazy most people will only look at the mark first, and others will have their opinions colored while reading the review, even if the words in it are not really indicating such a low score.
That is precisely what I hate about most game reviewers. Stop trying to be so bloody objective! Reading between the lines of this review I figured that Susan quite liked the thing but was worried that Joe G Public cannot enjoy what is actually a good game because it's not polished enough.

P.S. I just bought AP based on this review and Susan's reply in the forum, and will be back as soon as it's downloaded + an hour or two of gameplay...
 

Swifteye

New member
Apr 15, 2010
1,079
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Sounds like this game needed a lot of polish it didn't get. And I'm not just talking about the gameplay, graphics, and controls. This game looks snore worthy. I mean a spy running around with a machine gun shooting terrorist? Yawn. Something more interesting please?
 

Seamus8

New member
Mar 26, 2008
152
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Wasn't ever gonna buy this game but... Just wanted to say that for the escapist to tell it like it is on a game that has been a major advertiser is a great bit of integrity. Thanks to all the review staff once again.
 

pneuma08

Gaming Connoisseur
Sep 10, 2008
401
0
0
Sigh. Still continuing with the love/hate relationship with Obsidian. They always come so close to making a stellar game...hopefully one of these days they can pull it together and overcome their faults, whatever they are (I'm guessing poor management and overbearing publishers).

Still looking forward to New Vegas though. If they screw that up (which would essentially be taking Fallout 3 and ruining it - it would have to be a spectacular failure), that'll be the end.

qwagor said:
That is precisely what I hate about most game reviewers. Stop trying to be so bloody objective! Reading between the lines of this review I figured that Susan quite liked the thing but was worried that Joe G Public cannot enjoy what is actually a good game because it's not polished enough.
There's a difference between lack of polish and brokenness, though.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
Yossarian1507 said:
Susan Arendt said:
If it weren't for the bugs, I'd have given the game a 3. It's still only half a game, but there's fun to be had. But given how broken it is, I had to mark it down.

Also, just because I enjoy a game, that doesn't mean the game is good. When reviewing a game, you have to keep the greater audience in mind. Sure, I enjoy that the AI is so stupid they never hear me coming, because I'm really lousy at stealth, but will the typical person looking for a fun spy experience feel the same way? Probably not. And while I might be willing to put up with intermittent control issues because I find the RPG elements to be a hoot, it's unreasonable to expect the same of someone else. All I can do is tell people that these things happen and let them decide how to proceed.
Uhm... Games are supposed to be an enjoyment. So, if you're enjoying the game then yes - it is good. At least for you, despite every bug or bad mechanic you'll encounter. If you're having fun - mission accomplished.


Every gamer should seek through the words if either the game is good for him or not.
I agree completely. The game is enjoyable for me personally, but it's easy to see how others might not share that enjoyment. This is why we have a written review, to try and give you the full picture, and allow you to decide for yourself whether or not the game is worth a shot.
 

Hotshots

New member
Dec 8, 2009
232
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The game looks decent enough to me, PC port will certainly be the most "Playable", but has anybody else noticed how desperately unfunny Susan is?
 

Hawgh

New member
Dec 24, 2007
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Hm, think I'll get in a while, when some of the bugs may have been cleared up.
 

qwagor

New member
Mar 18, 2009
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pneuma08 said:
Sigh. Still continuing with the love/hate relationship with Obsidian. They always come so close to making a stellar game...hopefully one of these days they can pull it together and overcome their faults, whatever they are (I'm guessing poor management and overbearing publishers).

Still looking forward to New Vegas though. If they screw that up (which would essentially be taking Fallout 3 and ruining it - it would have to be a spectacular failure), that'll be the end.

qwagor said:
That is precisely what I hate about most game reviewers. Stop trying to be so bloody objective! Reading between the lines of this review I figured that Susan quite liked the thing but was worried that Joe G Public cannot enjoy what is actually a good game because it's not polished enough.
There's a difference between lack of polish and brokenness, though.
I agree, but I got the feeling that game isn't broken (at least not on PC and 360) just sort of... under developed. I also got the feeling that it's something I might enjoy (interesting and well told story? choices that are squarely in the grey area and do affect the way story plays out? stealth play with miopic NPCs hard of hearing? Yes, please). I also have pre-emptive low expectations and at GBP 24.99 (USD 36.51) it is affordable mistake. I shall know in 2h26m...
 

Mr. Socky

New member
Apr 22, 2009
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Nimbus said:
I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
The PC was a port of the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions. Also, I can confirm that I have had absolutely no problems on the Xbox 360.

Maybe the review versions sent out were f---ed up the arse? Cause I haven't had any problems whatsoever. In fact, I freaking love the game!
 

thevegetarianzombie

New member
Dec 11, 2008
79
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Although I was honestly rooting for Obsidian here, I was expecting very little after playing KOTOR II. It seems they just don't know how to finish making a game before releasing it.

This bodes poorly for New Vegas.
 

scarab7

New member
Jun 20, 2009
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I wish companies would do something to salvage things like this. A lot of these ideas seem really good, just crappy workmanship. Ya I know AI is beyond tweaks and polish, but I'd buy this game if they got a good review from escapist. Plus, the bad reviews will act like a skeleton to scare other companies from making a similar game. So RPG and spies won't be together in any future games for a while.
 

oranger

New member
May 27, 2008
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and yet another game becomes an unwitting prototype for something else
 

Callate

New member
Dec 5, 2008
5,118
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That's a shame. I wonder if the PC version will be getting a patch?... I don't worry too much about minor graphic glitches, but controller glitches are another kettle o' fish.
 

Kiroshimatsu

New member
Oct 17, 2008
88
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That's a shame... it looked like a really sweet idea too. Thanks Susan for the honest review about the bugs. I'm sure it'd be awesome if Ubisoft worked on it :)
 

Lunar Shadow

New member
Dec 9, 2008
653
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Nimbus said:
I never noticed any control problems or visual glitches on the PC version. Bad port maybe?
That's what I am thinking, as I have had no problems with the pC version. I did have the controls not respond once, but that was cause the batteries in my keyboard died >_>
 

spinFX

New member
Aug 18, 2008
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This was nearly Obsidian's last hope. If they mess up New Vegas I expect the studio to fold. They really had no excuse with this, no strict timeline, not like KOTOR 2 (which considering the development time was a great game - Obsidian's only saving grace).

Obsidian is ending up like Ed Wood. Has the passion but not the talent.
 

Two Angels

New member
Dec 25, 2009
164
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I'm on my third playthrough and I have yet to run into the mass number of bugs people are bitching about. Only a few times has the AI retarded out on me and most graphical glitches have been few and far between. As for the shooting, well it's trying to be somewhat realistic in the fact that you have to steady your aim before you can start putting caps between eyes. There are glitches but the story and the working parts of the gameplay over ride that for me.

I'm quite shocked this review failed to even mention the story and the fact you have so many different ways of playing through the game or the fact that there are about 32 endings depending on what choices you made or the fact that people will react and mention things you have done and said in the past and that this will affect how you are percieved in the game .
 

Thanatos5150

New member
Apr 20, 2009
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Two Angels said:
As for the shooting, well it's trying to be somewhat realistic in the fact that you have to steady your aim before you can start putting caps between eyes. There are glitches but the story and the working parts of the gameplay over ride that for me.
Not at five meters, and only a little bit more at thirty-five.
And the extent of my firearms training was a powerpoint presentation and a trip to the shooting range. I didn't even make Marksman and barely qualified.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
Hotshots said:
The game looks decent enough to me, PC port will certainly be the most "Playable", but has anybody else noticed how desperately unfunny Susan is?
I wasn't trying to be funny. Perhaps that's why you didn't think I was.
 

nipsen

New member
Sep 20, 2008
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Um.. thought about something. :D ...can anyone who has played the game explain how the aiming/shooting system works?
 

Korhal

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Jun 9, 2008
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I love the game, to be honest. I'm about 80% of the way through it on the PS3, and I don't understand how my experience is so different from most other peoples.

Yes, the graphics are bad, but that doesn't bother me. The texture pop is, for the most part, minimal, the lip syncing isn't bad... I think that the numerous delays just make the graphics seem worse than they would've been.

The stealth isn't entirely broken. Your armor choices, the speed you move, the powers you utilize all make a difference. Don't put any points into stealth, and if you don't stay far, far away using silenced weapons, the enemies will respond. Sure, sometimes you get away with sneaking up on someone you shouldn't have, and sometimes an enemy will spot you from across the way, but I think the hidden dice have something to do with that, not just less than stellar AI. My biggest issue here was that the bodies disappeared, so unless an enemy was staring at another enemy when you shot him, you could get away with it. The bad AI comes in smaller doses, like climbing ladders mid firefight, or not taking cover. But even that doesn't bother me so much... mooks are always stupid in spy movies. Also, they can never hit for anything, so really, if this was accurate to spy movies, I'd never get hit, except maybe in a dramatic cutscene.

I didn't have any control issues either, other than the occasional issue of what I have dubbed "Gearsofwaritis", wherein too much shit is mapped to one button. Cover, drop from ledge, pick up loot, hack, lethal takedowns.... sometimes it would mess that up, but not often. The closest thing to a control issue I can think of is a flincky camera in tight spaces... it zooms in too close and is a tad uncontrollable.

And actually, the guns do play fairly differently. Each one has its own mechanic. Pistols must be trained on a person to activate their critical hit, but you can move the cursor and maintain that damage bonus as long as you stay on your target, with a skill that lets you stop time to aim a bunch of shots a la Red Dead Redemption's Dead Eye. ARs don't need to stay on a target, but they lose their critical hit if you adjust your aim, though they have a skill that lets the game track an enemy for you while still gaining critical. Shotguns build up knockdown chance the longer you aim down the sights, with an ability that removes the need for charge time to get said knockdown. Get full, and even one pellet will knock someone down from well beyond the range a shotgun does any respectable damage (which seems to me like a perfect use for Flechette rounds). And SMGs build damage the longer you spray one target, and they have a skill that lets you have a bottomless clip, so who needs accuracy? Sure, you're likely to stick with your favorite, and maybe have a few points in a backup but that happens in every game (Hell, that's how I played Mass Effect too), plus you can only carry two guns anyway.

But really, the key here is the story, which as Ms. Arendt says is quite good. The voice acting is generally good, the story is fun and believable and more dynamic than just about any other game out there (where what you do, how you do it, and in what order actually dramatically change the story), the characters are interesting and engaging, and you can feel your impact on it.

Honestly, I think Alpha Protocol's biggest roadblock is that most reviewers seemed to have wanted Mass Effect 3: The Moderning (yes, I made up a word). And while it bears a resemblance on the surface, it's not that. Sure, it could've used more polish, and the AI could've used a bit of beefing up. But the game is still good, and it's gotten an unfairly harsh rap.

Story: 5
Graphics: 2
Gameplay: 3 for the action, 5 for the dialogue
Sound: 2 for the SFX, 4 for the voice acting
Replayability: Well once I beat it tonight, I plan to immediately restart and pick different stuff, so 5.
TOTAL: 4 out of 5


As a side note, I think this may be one of the first times I've disagreed with Ms. Arendt.
 

mokes310

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Oct 13, 2008
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Huge bonus points for the designers who selected the nice 2-step garage track at the opening sequence ;)
 

Thanatos5150

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nipsen said:
Um.. thought about something. :D ...can anyone who has played the game explain how the aiming/shooting system works?
Four different systems, four different guns:

Pistol:
You hold the aim button (L.Trigger on the 360 controller) and put your targeting reticule near the guy's hitbox or on it, and hold it. The reticule will turn red and shrink and a bunch of little arrows will draw closer to the dot at the center. And its shrunkenist and reddest, firing will result in a Critical hit.
Extra points for headshots. Moving, standing, or dropping your reticule off the target will spoil your aim, and the reticule will grow larger and less red. At level zero, the whole process takes a little more than three seconds.
Firing spoils your aim completely and the reticule grows to maximum size. You can only precision aim at nearby targets (five meters or so)

Assault Rifle:
You hold the aim button and hold the reticule in one spot, four arrows at the "corners" will slowly close and converge on a red "x" in the centre. All three bullets in the compulsory three-round burst will land between the arrows. Moving or shooting completely spoils your aim, nudging the stick, standing or couching only slightly affects your aim. The AR is actually good for precision and mano-a-mano close combat.

SMG:
Spray and Pray and Sell at First Oppertunity. These are nothing resembling accurate. There is no real "aim system. Hold the aim button will give you a (large) reticule and a bar which climbs with every hit. The higher the bar, the higer you damage multiplier for each successive hit. Reloading resets the modifer.

Shotgun:
Hold aim, put target in reticule. When the whole thing is red, pull the trigger for maximum damage and probable knockdown effect.
 

SomeBritishDude

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Nov 1, 2007
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I wasn't looking forward to this game much so this doesn't bother me. What does bother me is the fact that Obsidian is also working on Fallout: New Vegas, a game I was very much looking forward to. Now...I'm more than a little cautious.

Obsidian, you had your chance. You were finally given a decent time schedule for a game and your blew it anyway. I was looking forward to seeing a blending of the old and new Fallout in NV but now not so much.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
0
0
Korhal said:
Our opinions are actually fairly close, but given what a buggy experience I had, naturally I scored lower than you. Really quite befuddled by the number of people who say they had no problems at all on the PS3. I'm wondering if perhaps the version of PS3 you have makes any difference at all. Because if something happens once, maybe twice, I'm happy to chalk it up to my imagination, but these issues were just too frequent to be all in my head.
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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Susan Arendt said:
Korhal said:
Our opinions are actually fairly close, but given what a buggy experience I had, naturally I scored lower than you. Really quite befuddled by the number of people who say they had no problems at all on the PS3. I'm wondering if perhaps the version of PS3 you have makes any difference at all. Because if something happens once, maybe twice, I'm happy to chalk it up to my imagination, but these issues were just too frequent to be all in my head.
Might it be an issue with your controller?

... who am i kidding even asking that question?
I'mma go wander off for a bit and bludgeon my skull using the nearest wall as an improvised thwacking implement.
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
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0
Thanatos5150 said:
Susan Arendt said:
Korhal said:
Our opinions are actually fairly close, but given what a buggy experience I had, naturally I scored lower than you. Really quite befuddled by the number of people who say they had no problems at all on the PS3. I'm wondering if perhaps the version of PS3 you have makes any difference at all. Because if something happens once, maybe twice, I'm happy to chalk it up to my imagination, but these issues were just too frequent to be all in my head.
Might it be an issue with your controller?

... who am i kidding even asking that question?
I'mma go wander off for a bit and bludgeon my skull using the nearest wall as an improvised thwacking implement.
:)

Yes, thought of that first, actually. Sadly not the case.
 

nipsen

New member
Sep 20, 2008
521
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Thanatos5150 said:
nipsen said:
Um.. thought about something. :D ...can anyone who has played the game explain how the aiming/shooting system works?
Four different systems, four different guns:

Pistol:
You hold the aim button (L.Trigger on the 360 controller) and put your targeting reticule near the guy's hitbox or on it, and hold it. The reticule will turn red and shrink and a bunch of little arrows will draw closer to the dot at the center. And its shrunkenist and reddest, firing will result in a Critical hit.
Extra points for headshots. Moving, standing, or dropping your reticule off the target will spoil your aim, and the reticule will grow larger and less red. At level zero, the whole process takes a little more than three seconds.
Firing spoils your aim completely and the reticule grows to maximum size. You can only precision aim at nearby targets (five meters or so)

Assault Rifle:
You hold the aim button and hold the reticule in one spot, four arrows at the "corners" will slowly close and converge on a red "x" in the centre. All three bullets in the compulsory three-round burst will land between the arrows. Moving or shooting completely spoils your aim, nudging the stick, standing or couching only slightly affects your aim. The AR is actually good for precision and mano-a-mano close combat.

SMG:
Spray and Pray and Sell at First Oppertunity. These are nothing resembling accurate. There is no real "aim system. Hold the aim button will give you a (large) reticule and a bar which climbs with every hit. The higher the bar, the higer you damage multiplier for each successive hit. Reloading resets the modifer.

Shotgun:
Hold aim, put target in reticule. When the whole thing is red, pull the trigger for maximum damage and probable knockdown effect.
I see. Thanks a whole bunch. I was worried that it was just shooting repeatedly while running, lol. Sounds a bit more promising now.
 

Thanatos5150

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Susan Arendt said:
Thanatos5150 said:
Susan Arendt said:
Korhal said:
Our opinions are actually fairly close, but given what a buggy experience I had, naturally I scored lower than you. Really quite befuddled by the number of people who say they had no problems at all on the PS3. I'm wondering if perhaps the version of PS3 you have makes any difference at all. Because if something happens once, maybe twice, I'm happy to chalk it up to my imagination, but these issues were just too frequent to be all in my head.
Might it be an issue with your controller?

... who am i kidding even asking that question?
I'mma go wander off for a bit and bludgeon my skull using the nearest wall as an improvised thwacking implement.
:)

Yes, thought of that first, actually. Sadly not the case.
I relised you might of ex post facto. Hence the self-inflicted cranial trauma.
 

Benny Blanco

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Well, that's a damn shame... I've been consuming rather more Burn Notice than is really good for me and the idea of roleplaying a spy whose agency hung him out to dry sounded nifty.

Hey, maybe someone'll do a game of that? God knows Bruce Campbell alone would be worth it...
 

Thanatos5150

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Apr 20, 2009
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nipsen said:
I see. Thanks a whole bunch. I was worried that it was just shooting repeatedly while running, lol. Sounds a bit more promising now.
Not counting atrocious spelling and grammar, I feel the need to correct a minor issue:
When actual numbers are given, these are numbers observed for level /zero/ of proficiency. Leveling up will increase range, decrease aim time, and all sorts of other goodies. Numbers can be ascertained by hitting the "More info" button (Defaulted to L.Bumper on the 360 controller) on the level up screen.
 

Megawizard

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Mar 24, 2008
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So far the only issues I've had is a laggy camera, but we'll see. I don't know why I haven't learned to just stay the hell away from Obsidian by now. Oh well, I guess this was their final chance with me.
 

Podunk

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Dec 18, 2008
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Seeing how ugly the ads were(like the one that just played while trying to watch the review supplement), I had the feeling the game had to look even worse. Seeing how prevalent they were didn't exactly fill me with confidence, either. When the article about the foreign reviews and posts by disgruntled employees came about earlier I knew there just could not be any hope for the game. Though it's still always nice to get the Escapist's official take on it and a new chance to listen to the dulcet tones of Susan Arendt. Hopefully New Vegas will be really cool?
 

chaos order

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Jan 27, 2010
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OMG i though this might be you know THE GAME. but dammit it was too broken if ONLy they spent more time on it. aw:(

on a side note I JUST LOST THE GAME. and so did u
 

Fightgarr

Concept Artist
Dec 3, 2008
2,913
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Sounds less like a case of bad development and more of a case of really bad QA. Though, me being on the QA side of the gaming world, it is very possible that all the bugs you ran into were bugged, but the devs waived them out of laziness or something on those lines... so yeah, it could go either way. Lazy and/or rushed devs or bad QA staff.
 

Korhal

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Susan Arendt said:
Korhal said:
Our opinions are actually fairly close, but given what a buggy experience I had, naturally I scored lower than you. Really quite befuddled by the number of people who say they had no problems at all on the PS3. I'm wondering if perhaps the version of PS3 you have makes any difference at all. Because if something happens once, maybe twice, I'm happy to chalk it up to my imagination, but these issues were just too frequent to be all in my head.
I don't know. I had a friend who got all kinds of game-crashing bugs in Red Dead Redemption that I didn't get, and when he called Rockstar they said he probably got a bad disk, so maybe there's a little bit of that going on. Though if it provides any evidence for your theory I have one of the newer PS3s, the thinner one with a 120GB hard drive, I bought it when Heavy Rain came out, whenever that was. Not long ago.

I didn't have any control issues, really, other than, like I said, when it would get confused by there being a bunch of Push X to ____'s stacked on top of each other. Now, I do kind of wish that I had more buttons for skills, given that I was constantly using Awareness, and the AR aiming thingamajig, and Overclock. I got remote hack, but since I was playing an assault type character, i never had to be sneaky and hack from range because everyone would be dead lol. But that's hardly AP's fault.

Maybe this is a game where it just creates a gut love or hate feeling... I mean, I can't think of any other game that ranges all the way from the mid 80s to the low 20s on metacritic just based on who you ask (though in my totally non-professional opinion, that guy from Destructoid is a muckraking hack).

I mean, yeah, the graphics were bad, and yet there was still texture pop and the like. So that was kinda bad. But I'd seen promotional videos, so I knew the graphics were bad going into it. Nothing else really stuck out to me as *bad* other than that (and the more annoying sound effects). And I certainly didn't see the bugs you speak of.

I don't know what else to say :\
 

antipunt

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This is one of those games that looked great on paper; still, my skepticism was triggered the second I saw the first cheesy-trailer ad. Actually, even before that. Anything that sounds too good to be true that sort of pops out of nowhere deserves a certain wariness
 

Void(null)

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chaos order said:
OMG i though this might be you know THE GAME. but dammit it was too broken if ONLy they spent more time on it. aw:(

on a side note I JUST LOST THE GAME. and so did u
I won the game [http://xkcd.com/391/] a long time ago.
 

wonkify

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Oct 2, 2009
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Count me in with Susan on the shoe phone. But I've always wondered, why only one? I mean two shoes, right?

And nothing is cooler than than a spy standing around in black dress socks holding both shoes up to his head like bunny ears.
 

wonkify

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Hotshots said:
The game looks decent enough to me, PC port will certainly be the most "Playable", but has anybody else noticed how desperately unfunny Susan is?
No
 

Centrophy

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Dec 24, 2009
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Playing the PC version and I have not encountered any bugs, which from Obsidian is strangely disconcerting. However I did notice that shopping seemed to go by faster on your version of the game than it does on my version. There is an extremely noticeable hesitation when switching between gun models and everything else in the store (Even when purchasing the same item). The same hesitation is also encountered when the game loads up new mobs into the maps during the missions, otherwise the game works as intended.

If I have to find a gripe or two it's that the hacking mini game is kinda ridiculous and tedious; the save system is annoying especially when the doors behind you close during the missions and then you can't reload a previous save to see if you missed something; the timed responses while an interesting idea just felt really... unfair(?) to the point is that sometimes you don't have the time to read and understand all of the options before you run out of time; Oh, and the cool downs on many of the abilities are extremely long for no reason.

With that out of the way I still have to ask myself the question; Am I having fun with this game? and my only response can be that there are fun bits to be had but over all I say no. I can't really point to one thing particular reason why but I'm just not. I say give it a rental if you are curious and can. (PC version, likely you can't.)
 

elricik

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I bought it and am having fun playing it. Its not the best game I've ever played. But I'm a bit of a story whore and am willing to overlook most of the flaws. I'm sure patches will be out soon to fix the technical stuff. But by far the best part of Alpha Protocol is the story, if you go in for that then you won't be disappointed.
 

Danz D Man

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Brainst0rm said:
Sad to hear. Obsidian doesn't have such a great track record, does it? And they've just signed on to help with the Wheel of Time RPG...oh dear...
NOOOOO!

I don't want my favorite book series to be ruined!
 

Terrified Android

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It's good to see that, Susan, you are always very honest and fair in your reviews.

as much as I had seen this game advertised on the site I would have expected a review of it to be a little. . . one sided (if you'll forgive me). but rightly so, you did a great job as usual, offering a truthful review, which i certainly didn't expect, these days, other reviewers are always giving games, "A perfect ten" "10/10, a rare gem" "Stunning, blah blah blah"

It's good to see good, honest reviews.
 

Chakanus

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This is one of the games where I wish it was reviewed on this site before the star rating system was added. I'm playing it on pc, hard mode, and besides the occasional texture pop-in, and a few furious first attempts at the hacking, I'm enjoying it immensely.

If the person doesn't care too much about the graphics, and likes RPG's, I think this one is a possible keeper. Maybe it was the way it was advertised, but there are a lot of folks (not here) complaining about shooting a guy straight in the face and the character missing. The thing is, this game is an RPG in a spy world; it's not a shooter with (a lot) of RPG elements like Mass Effect. It's just an RPG where you get to shoot, and the mathematical mechanics are there as underlying rules.

I remember when I first picked up KOTOR, the first thing I did in Taris was entering a duel with some guy. I stood 5 m from him, shooting and missing, while the poor bastard shot and missed me, for a good 3 minutes, until the pc was so bored it killed that enemy just so I could move on with my life.

And it's not a stealthy game. It's an RPG where you can hit H and Hide in Plain Sight, causing criticals (thankfully there are no undead in this game). And sure the AI is just a wee bit... "special", but again, in hard mode, it's not overly ridiculous. Just has its quirks.

Someone in the official forums claimed that this game could potentially be the next Vampire The Masquerade Bloodlines, and I couldn't agree more. A fairly deeply flawed gem (VTMB was downright unplayable for me, which gets even less points), but one I'm sure I shall remember fondly and come back for it a great deal of times.... especially if some fans deliver a wonderful goody-patch like it happened for VTMB and KOTOR II.
 

Rayansaki

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Where others fail, others will improve upon. Take a good look at Obsidian's job and don't make the same mistakes The Agency & Agent!
 

Dommyboy

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I enjoyed the game until it got to some of the 'boss' fights. They're just insanely stupid and difficult. Though, the control glitches do not seem to be apparent on the PC version.
 

albinoterrorist

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Jan 1, 2009
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Dommyboy said:
I enjoyed the game until it got to some of the 'boss' fights. They're just insanely stupid and difficult.
Yeah, I remember the first time I fought Brayko.. Took HOURS. D:

Still, Chain shot helps. A lot.

Regarding bugs, I have the PS3 version and a ye-olde 40GB fat PS3.

Never got the controller issues. True, at full zoom the sniper was VERY twitchy, but that's no real problem.

Got the graphical glitches everynow and again, but not often enough to break the immersion.

With this in mind, i'd recommend renting it. It's worth a try, if nothing else.
 

The Imp

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I've beat the game twice on pc and loved every minute of it. Sure, the graphics are really bad but i can live with that since they tried to combine my most favourite genres espionage and rpg.
Not necessarily the $60 worth for a console but definitly the 32.99? for the pc. And because full price games start at 45? this is even a budget titel. :)
 

Susan Arendt

Nerd Queen
Jan 9, 2007
7,222
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0
Korhal said:
Susan Arendt said:
Korhal said:
Our opinions are actually fairly close, but given what a buggy experience I had, naturally I scored lower than you. Really quite befuddled by the number of people who say they had no problems at all on the PS3. I'm wondering if perhaps the version of PS3 you have makes any difference at all. Because if something happens once, maybe twice, I'm happy to chalk it up to my imagination, but these issues were just too frequent to be all in my head.
I don't know. I had a friend who got all kinds of game-crashing bugs in Red Dead Redemption that I didn't get, and when he called Rockstar they said he probably got a bad disk, so maybe there's a little bit of that going on. Though if it provides any evidence for your theory I have one of the newer PS3s, the thinner one with a 120GB hard drive, I bought it when Heavy Rain came out, whenever that was. Not long ago.
Mine's one of the original 40 gigs. Interesting.

Oh, I also ran into more than one situation where there was something to pick up, but when I went to grab it, I ducked into cover instead. Very annoying, especially when the item in question was healing that I very much needed.

Megawizard said:
So far the only issues I've had is a laggy camera, but we'll see. I don't know why I haven't learned to just stay the hell away from Obsidian by now. Oh well, I guess this was their final chance with me.
Hmmm, interesting. Can't remember having any serious camera issues - well, no more serious than other games, I should say. More than once you end up in a corner looking at your hat instead of the guy you're trying to punch, but that's hardly a situation unique to AP.
 

uk_john

New member
Jan 1, 2007
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This review site doesn't even understand it should tell us what machine it was played on! The fact it doesn't doesn't help any of us at all - or the company!

It's like that RPG called Two Worlds, on PC ok to good, on console terrible - but go to threads and nobody tells you what they played it on - hence me believing that all the people complaining having the console version and all those praising the game having the PC version, but I could be wrong!

We ALL need to understand, both media and gamers, that when a game comes out on 2-4 formats, we need to tell gamers (either viewers of reviews like this or our fellow gamers) what format version we are talking about!

Can be get a little more IQ into our gamers and gaming sites?!
 

Ixal

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Mar 19, 2008
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Play the game on a real system, the PC, and nearly all of the negatives go away.
Alpha Protocol is a good game. It has some problems and rough edges, but it is very enjoyable.
 

zauxz

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Mar 8, 2009
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I think something might be wrong with your version of the game, I did not experiance any of the bugs you listed.

I loved every second of that game, it was just amazing.
 

Kelorin

New member
Mar 9, 2004
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Sounds like a failed attempt to recreate Mass Effect in a modern setting.
Let's see:
[x] - Computer hacking minigame
[x] - Safe cracking minigame
[x] - Picking pre-game character history
[x] - Combat, Stealth or Techie roles
[x] - Character can lean towards suave, ladykiller (Paragon) or ruthless badass (Renegade)
 

Unhappy Crow

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Just like Gametrailers and Gamespot, this game is not worth buying. Just a rent unless you're really bored and want somnething to play to make time fly. I say skip it.

And on the side note, I still find the way he walks when crouch down so effing funny. It's like he has to go to the bathroom or got something caught up his rear.
 

qwagor

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Mar 18, 2009
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Chakanus said:
This is one of the games where I wish it was reviewed on this site before the star rating system was added. I'm playing it on pc, hard mode, and besides the occasional texture pop-in, and a few furious first attempts at the hacking, I'm enjoying it immensely.

If the person doesn't care too much about the graphics, and likes RPG's, I think this one is a possible keeper. Maybe it was the way it was advertised, but there are a lot of folks (not here) complaining about shooting a guy straight in the face and the character missing. The thing is, this game is an RPG in a spy world; it's not a shooter with (a lot) of RPG elements like Mass Effect. It's just an RPG where you get to shoot, and the mathematical mechanics are there as underlying rules.

I remember when I first picked up KOTOR, the first thing I did in Taris was entering a duel with some guy. I stood 5 m from him, shooting and missing, while the poor bastard shot and missed me, for a good 3 minutes, until the pc was so bored it killed that enemy just so I could move on with my life.

And it's not a stealthy game. It's an RPG where you can hit H and Hide in Plain Sight, causing criticals (thankfully there are no undead in this game). And sure the AI is just a wee bit... "special", but again, in hard mode, it's not overly ridiculous. Just has its quirks.

Someone in the official forums claimed that this game could potentially be the next Vampire The Masquerade Bloodlines, and I couldn't agree more. A fairly deeply flawed gem (VTMB was downright unplayable for me, which gets even less points), but one I'm sure I shall remember fondly and come back for it a great deal of times.... especially if some fans deliver a wonderful goody-patch like it happened for VTMB and KOTOR II.
After playing it for few hours (on PC), I have to say that I completely agree with the above statement (also with Korhal's review). Once I realised that AP is not ME2 like action game with RPG elements, but an actual RPG that just happens to look like third person shooter/stealth game, it clicked and I am enjoying it very much. I just finished Saudi Arabia (that would be like 1/5th of the game) and I'm already planning to play it 3 more times as each of the JBs...
 

Korhal

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Jun 9, 2008
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Susan Arendt said:
Mine's one of the original 40 gigs. Interesting.

Oh, I also ran into more than one situation where there was something to pick up, but when I went to grab it, I ducked into cover instead. Very annoying, especially when the item in question was healing that I very much needed.
The plot thickens.... Maybe there's something to you theory, Ms. Arendt.

Kelorin said:
Sounds like a failed attempt to recreate Mass Effect in a modern setting.
Let's see:
[x] - Computer hacking minigame
[x] - Safe cracking minigame
[x] - Picking pre-game character history
[x] - Combat, Stealth or Techie roles
[x] - Character can lean towards suave, ladykiller (Paragon) or ruthless badass (Renegade)
*headdesk* Yes, Mass Effect is clearly AP's primary influence, but it's much more different in practice than it sounds in a bulletpointed (and somewhat silly) list like that. Picking history? Being nice or being a jerk? Direct combat or specialist... sounds like almost every RPG.
 

Frenger

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May 31, 2009
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Looks like I might get this one, in a year or two when the price drop. And maybe they've patched it by then :)
 

Jake Martinez

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pneuma08 said:
Sigh. Still continuing with the love/hate relationship with Obsidian. They always come so close to making a stellar game...hopefully one of these days they can pull it together and overcome their faults, whatever they are (I'm guessing poor management and overbearing publishers).

Still looking forward to New Vegas though. If they screw that up (which would essentially be taking Fallout 3 and ruining it - it would have to be a spectacular failure), that'll be the end.

qwagor said:
That is precisely what I hate about most game reviewers. Stop trying to be so bloody objective! Reading between the lines of this review I figured that Susan quite liked the thing but was worried that Joe G Public cannot enjoy what is actually a good game because it's not polished enough.
There's a difference between lack of polish and brokenness, though.
I think people blaming the publishers for Obsidians increasingly poor track record is a little played out by now. Other studios manage to consistently deliver engaging and fun games under publisher pressure, I don't see why Obsidian should get a pass, 3 or 4 times in a row on this score.

To me, the problems with this game seem to be all project management/design. For instance, the game has this great customization and upgrade system that is very engaging, but when you get into the field and encounter the enemy, their AI is so bad you could defeat them all with a can of silly string and a salami that has been sitting in the back of your fridge for 3 weeks. That's just terrible - it's like someone dreamed up this great system, focused a ton of effort on getting it implemented, then never bothered to actually see if it enhanced the gameplay (or even brought any actual value to the game experience).

Crashes aside, if the AI in this game wasn't so poorly implemented (even if it cost them say, half of the customization elements) the game would instantly become so much better.

Also, I think Susan should have mentioned how unbalanced the RPG elements of the character building are in this game. She might not have noticed because it doesn't seem that these type of games are her bag, but several of the skills (most notoriously in the stealth branch) are obscenely over powered to the point of making a very easy game ridiculously trivial.
 

electric discordian

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Apr 27, 2008
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I rather enjoyed this so far, however one thing I will say. You can "Gears" every level, there is no need for stealth or subtlety at all. Go in in Swat armour with the assault rifle and you literally cannot loose at all.

Which in some ways is a bit annoying. I look on it as if Mass Effect and Splinter Cell had a baby unfortunately they didn't know they shared a surname!
 

onda

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Jan 7, 2010
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Get the pc version. Visual glitches are still there, but the controls work great, the hacking mini game is anoying, since you need to contol the other thing with your mouse, the speech choices worked better in mass effect but, good game, needs an overworld.
 

Usurpurus

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Oct 12, 2009
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I'm renting it atm, and I'm really enjoying it. It feels like Mass Effect, but in my opinion, better. The dialogue is smoother with the spontaneous options.

I'd reccomend it but hey, not everyone like it.

(mines the PS3 version and I have found no bugs except for the odd graphics one)
 

stardroid

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Mar 29, 2010
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OK I dont understand why many people hate Alpha Protocol. I have almost finished the game and I DIDENT FIND ANY BUGS ON PC VERSION. I dident experience any game freeze, graphic glitches. Yes shooting is terrible but it is a stealth game. That mean you should sneak around and take down enemys quiet. AI is very stupid. And about jumping it is a RPG for gods sake it isent a shooter.
And I dont care about consoles, because I dont know anyone how has one. Every one of may friends has a PC. And from what I just sow I can say PC is still the best.
In the end the game is far from perfect but it isent that bad and AI, jumping, shootings arent bugs.
 

cavalerie

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Jan 11, 2010
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But even the AI isn't that stupid on the PC.
I mean don't get me wrong, it's bad, but I don't recall enemies not shooting me when I was above them.
Also the visual glitches are minor (like some textures overlapping on you character).
It does however stutter when it loads a new part of the level, which I found to be quite annoying.
Overall I enjoyed the game, but it could have been a lot better.


stardroid said:
Yes shooting is terrible but it is a stealth game. That mean you should sneak around and take down enemys quiet.
No, it's not a stealth game.
Technically it's supposed to allow you to play any way you want.
You can go stealth or you can go all out Rambo and shoot everything on sight.
Personally I played both ways and it worked fine. Again it could have been better, but it's functional any way you choose.
 

Susan Arendt

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Jan 9, 2007
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cavalerie said:
But even the AI isn't that stupid on the PC.
I mean don't get me wrong, it's bad, but I don't recall enemies not shooting me when I was above them.
Also the visual glitches are minor (like some textures overlapping on you character).
It does however stutter when it loads a new part of the level, which I found to be quite annoying.
Overall I enjoyed the game, but it could have been a lot better.


stardroid said:
Yes shooting is terrible but it is a stealth game. That mean you should sneak around and take down enemys quiet.
No, it's not a stealth game.
Technically it's supposed to allow you to play any way you want.
You can go stealth or you can go all out Rambo and shoot everything on sight.
Personally I played both ways and it worked fine. Again it could have been better, but it's functional any way you choose.
Oh, hey, I have a question. Did you encounter a *lot* of loading? There seemed to be a rather excessive amount in the PS3 version, but perhaps that's just me being cranky.
 

RhombusHatesYou

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cavalerie said:
You can go stealth or you can go all out Rambo and shoot everything on sight.
Provided you've developed and equipped your character accordingly, otherwise it gets a bit tricky... you know, like it should be in RPGs. :)



edit to add:
It does however stutter when it loads a new part of the level, which I found to be quite annoying.
There's a small fix for that involving tweaking the config file but it doesn't always work nor does it always completely eliminate the stutter when it does.
 

Calum_M

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Nov 20, 2009
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I have the PS3 version, and I've definitely never encountered any of the controller issues you've mentioned. Maybe it's to do with which country's version you're playing? I'm in the UK, so I have the PAL version.

Also, I love this game, despite it's faults. The visual glitches can be annoying, but visually, I'd say it's pretty good.

If I had one criticism for this game, is it seems like they added the Tech Specialist 'class' as an afterthought. I've never found any use for gadgets, other than using EMPs for hacking computers quickly. And you only need the first ability in the gadget line to do that. Then again, maybe I'm doing it wrong. I thought Rogues in Dragon Age were useless until I found out some 'proper' builds for them, revealing them to be my favourite class in the game.
 

ravensshade

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Mar 18, 2009
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i noticed no control issues on the pc but yeah the occasionally laggy bits sucked.. (especially the blackmarket.. for some reason it constantly lagged up everytime i tried to buy a medikit which made me.. not buy em..

but it is/was an interesting game though speaking of bugs.. raildroading cutscenes are always interesting if you've spent your time kicking some boss in the face.. only to have you shoot at him from across the room in the next cutscene...
 

cavalerie

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Jan 11, 2010
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Susan Arendt said:
Oh, hey, I have a question. Did you encounter a *lot* of loading? There seemed to be a rather excessive amount in the PS3 version, but perhaps that's just me being cranky.
Not a lot, more than other games on PC but not that many.
It usually loads (and stutters) when there's a branching path in the level, or when you reach an area that closes up to you after you cross it (like elevator doors, or big gates, etc).
Can you do an install on the PS3? If so, you should. That should make the game load faster.

RhomCo said:
Provided you've developed and equipped your character accordingly, otherwise it gets a bit tricky... you know, like it should be in RPGs. :)
Obviously but you can however get high boost from equipment.
The right combination of equipment can compensate for lack of skill.
The game is tricky only the first time you play it. The second time (if you remember all the missions) it gets a LOT easier.
 

Susan Arendt

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Jan 9, 2007
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cavalerie said:
Susan Arendt said:
Oh, hey, I have a question. Did you encounter a *lot* of loading? There seemed to be a rather excessive amount in the PS3 version, but perhaps that's just me being cranky.
Not a lot, more than other games on PC but not that many.
It usually loads (and stutters) when there's a branching path in the level, or when you reach an area that closes up to you after you cross it (like elevator doors, or big gates, etc).
Can you do an install on the PS3? If so, you should. That should make the game load faster.
Oh, it installs straightaway when you first pop it in. And the load time aren't overly long, they just seem more frequent than perhaps they should. It's just very jarring when you're racing down the hallway and suddenly you're frozen in time for a few seconds. Certainly not a deal breaker, but vexing.
 

Gather

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Apr 9, 2009
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First and foremost, I loved the story. It was brilliant and obviously follows Bioware's style (With slight in-game revisions).

However,
I would comment the game suffered greatly from something I like to call "Stealthitis". On bosses, on the final level and against mechanical opponents you should expect to see all those points you invested into stealth go to waste (Although there is one "invisibility" skill that by-passes that but that's only good for buying time/getting rid of goons).

A lot of characters are impressed if you managed to stealth by things without reaping too much havoc in the levels, however.
 

albinoterrorist

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Jan 1, 2009
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Gather said:
On bosses, on the final level and against mechanical opponents you should expect to see all those points you invested into stealth go to waste (Although there is one "invisibility" skill that by-passes that but that's only good for buying time/getting rid of goons).
And that's why you should max out points on it to get as much invisibility time as possible.

If you move from cover to cover using it, you can get right behind every boss in the game.

Call me a coward, but the majority of the Marburg fight for me was pistol chain-shotting followed by fleeing invisibly to the next bit of cover until the abilities recharged.

Took a while, but saved my arse.

So, no, I disagree that stealth is a waste.
 

Dexs

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Mar 24, 2010
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I've never liked to the looks to this games and this review only confirms my dislike. I hope their terrible advertisments go away now.
 

AllLagNoFrag

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Jun 7, 2010
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This game is worth a rent if you are suffering from mass effect 2 withdrawal symptoms. To me, this game was a weak version of mass effect 2 however, I have got to say the timed dialogue system is pretty clever. Other than that, there is nothing in this game that no other game has already done better.

Mike Thorton can open doors but not close them?!
 

Nikajo

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Feb 6, 2009
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I think people are too harsh on this game. I've been playing it since last week and have been enjoying it quite a bit! Yeah it's rough round the edges and there were certain times when I was left thinking "how the hell did they not see that?" and also "how the hell did they see that?". But all in all it's been a good ride. The gunplay is weird, the way I've found of making it work is to only use focused shots with the pistol (my characters weapon of choice) and short bursts with the assault rifle. Even if things have gone horribly wrong then a combination of those two guns has always got me through, even at long range.

I don't get it, for me it hasn't been anywhere near as bad as people have made out. As for crashes, well it's crashed less than RDR has - RDR has crashed on me twice and Alpha Protocol hasn't crashed at all. Go figure!
 

SigmondK

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Jul 17, 2008
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Well having been about 75% all the way through my second play through of the game I have to say I gotta disagree with the review. Granted it was the PS3 copy and I'm playing the Xbox copy which the AI isn't as stupid as advertised though it does have a hard time tracking me down at times. Though there were a few points I wanted to add to the review that I think are a tad misleading. Particularly the whole not being able to jump back over certain walls.

The point that the video review shows in the game is just after an extremely short and straight forward section with little to no importance and has three potential enemies/allies depending on the way you played the game up to that point. That was the only area that I noticed the not being able to jump back, though there doesn't seem to be a reason to do so, though there are plenty of flaws that could have been put in it's place beside that. IE. the liniarity of the game. The game is very liniar when it comes to the missions. Sure you have a few hubs and a couple missions to choose between them though the maps themselves do offer a limited way of variation in certian regard, but for the most part they are very straight forward affairs.

To say there aren't glitches is an understatement too. Though in the Xbox version I didn't notice the whole freezing up and going in it's own direction. There was also a moment where I was in Brayko's mansion and the floor didn't load at one point and I fell right through, but one reload later and I'm right there again floor loaded without a problem.

While I'm on this tyraid of bad about the game before I get to the good I'll add this sentiment. Martial arts skill is semi-useless. For the most part all the bosses will destroy you in hand to hand combat. Even with maxed level in martial arts the bosses destroyed me, but on the second play through I focused pistol and well let's just say using the pistol special ability I ended a boss that took me fifteen minutes to beat the first time through (with no gun specialization) in under ten seconds (With pistol specialization).

With all those complaints and problems which probably aren't even all of them I still like this game. The story is fun and interesting, the character interaction does have nuance because making them love you or hating you both has it's own benefits, and I was having fun stealthing around trying to sneak through missions undetected. To top it all off this is a new IP and even Mass Effect (another game I quite enjoy) had it's own share of problems coming out the gate IE. graphical glitches and the like. Do the graphics look dated? yes, but if you can look past the blemishes it really is a very fun and interesting experience. A tad shorter then I would like, but in my humble opinion it's still worth a purchase.
 

JRE311

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Apr 16, 2009
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Alpha Protocol is buggy as hell and it's disappointing because it could have been epic. With all that said the story is and characters are so well done. I'm still very glad i bought this game. I'm very hopeful they make a squeal to this and fix there mistakes.
 

UlteriorMotive

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May 28, 2009
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Maybe it's me but I never noticed any control issues on the 360. Mikey Thorton didn't go running off on me, he normally did what I told him to do.

My only two beefs with the game is the fact that it just doesn't seem viable to use the shotgun or SMGs on the higher difficulty as the enemies are accurate as hell and do more dmg with each shot and the other issue is that Michael Thorton cannot engage in hand-to-hand combat in the later levels unless you did some decent leveling in his melee skill, even the low level goons could take him.

All in all, I found it a fun game, worth the $60 bucks I spent.
 

piglatinpoet

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Jun 15, 2010
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PC version doesn't have the graphical glitches or the control issues of the consoles (I played with an Xbox controller on my PC) but the AI leaves a lot to be desired-- even on the hardest setting, I beat the entire game in less than 20 hours. For an espionage thriller that supposedly spans the globe, Alpha Protocol lacks little in ambition, but much in delivery. It's worth a peek and maybe a rental.

Read: the dialogue options and multiple endings are a great idea-- unfortunately no matter what you do, the ending is basically the same (unless you played an ass and killed virtually everyone). Nice try, SEGA. But try harder.
 

Macrobstar

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Apr 28, 2010
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why is it that im one of the only people who enjoyed this game, there are bugs but there not gamebreaking
 

DustyDrB

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Jan 19, 2010
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So has a patch come out for this game yet because I still want to give it a try despite all the negative press.
 

WrongSprite

Resident Morrowind Fanboy
Aug 10, 2008
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I just bought the Steam version on the sale, and I don't know if they've patched the bugs out...but this is one of the most fun games I've played in a LONG time.

Seriously, it's great. Fun, varied gameplay, varied objectives, interesting levels, decent storyline, massive re-playability...I can't get enough, went through 8 hours on my first day!
 

powertieke

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Sep 11, 2011
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Without a doubt one of the best games I've played in the last five years, and the first game I've ever finished more than once (Currently on my third playthrough, first as operative (Starting XP in stealth and pistols), second as recruit (No starting XP), and now as a veteran (A LOT of starting XP)).

This is a game that many reviewers will mention a few years down the line as one of the most important games of this gen. Sure, it gets some stuff wrong, especially when compared to other shooters, but the stuff it gets right more than makes up for it. Funny thing is, most of the stuff it gets wrong as a shooter, actually make sense for an RPG. If you're not experienced with a certain weapon, it makes sense that you will have to steady your aim a little longer to hit your target.

I'm playing through Mass Effect 2 right now, and in addition to encountering WAY more bugs and stalls than I've encountered in my hours and hours with Alpha Protocol, I constantly find myself thinking "Why isn't this more like Alpha Protocol?".

Awesome game, shame we won't get a sequel.