I see this point come up a lot and I think it's moot. It's like if I played (say) Hitman on the easiest difficulty, and just proceeded guns blazing, mowing people down left and right, yet the game still lets on as if Agent 47 is halfway competent. Or if you take Half Life 2, and spend the entirety of the game chucking grenades at friendlies for funsies, yet further on down they'll still treat you like Jesus. You're defeating the purpose of the plot through the gameplay, but that's only relevant to the person playing - it was a conscious decision to not care about the story. And it was enabled by the developers. Maybe people would disagree, but I like it like that....massive, lurching disconnect between sandbox gameplay and story missions.
He wasn't calling it open-world.Silentpony said:I honestly don't understand the...CULT of Half Life. I played them; all of them. And at what point were the open world?
OT:I like organic movement along a linear path. And for what I consider the best example of that, look no further than my own love interest, Half-Life. It is presented linearly, but each individual area has several routes and interconnecting hallways, and it frequently loops around and revisits areas to provide opportunities for environmental storytelling.
This is the biggest problem I tend to have with open-world games that take themselves seriously. The only way the pacing is ever anything resembling reasonable is when I impose it on myself to ignore all of the side-stuff they're shoving in my face, and it always feels like the story is being dragged down as a result of that.And there are inherent problems in open-world gameplay, most importantly the fact that it's absolutely disastrous for pacing.
I think Yahtzee's point was that Half Life was not open world & was better served for itSilentpony said:I honestly don't understand the...CULT of Half Life. I played them; all of them. And at what point were the open world?
Yahtzee's entire point was that Half-Life wasn't open world. And that that linearity was one of the reasons it was such a good example of storytelling in games.Silentpony said:I honestly don't understand the...CULT of Half Life. I played them; all of them. And at what point were the open world? Yes, when you have the jalopy car you CAN drive in wide circles and occasionally fine a piece of debris that's slightly different from the next, but that was it. Maybe its just me, but a labyrinth(Which I will remind you is different than a maze in that a labyrinth has a central room that all paths branch out of) game with a dozen corridors leading to the same room doesn't feel free. It almost feels cruel. It says the developers took the time to build X number of extra rooms, but did so for its own sake. I don't remember many side-quests in Half Life...or hell, interacting with people at all. I remember being a silent protagonist going from one trooper/alien infested room to the next, shooting everything then waiting for an NPC to tell me to go to the next. Say what you will about bland games like Fable, but you could at least interact with the 20 interchangeable NPCs. Half Life was just...a bland FPS before we called things 'bland FPS'
I hate to be pessimistic about 'open world' games but there's a distinct trade-off. You can either have Mass Effect type games, which are strictly linear combat missions and heavy with character interactions, OR Saints Row games where you can do almost anything you want but the only character interaction is just how many bullets you put in a corpse before you make another one. I've never seen a game with as indepth characters as Mass Effect while keeping the massive freedom of a sandbox. A processor can't handle that type of game!
I love the implementation of zones. When devs stop trying to be buzz-wordy and just make a solid product that is cohesive in itself, even if limited, they are almost always better for it.JamesBr said:This is why I prefer set-pieces to true sandbox. Or Deus Ex/Dishonored style open "zones" with quests scattered throughout them. You cut out the faffing around from location to location that plagues series like GTA, while still allowing the user to dick around and approach the plot in the way that they choose.