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The sequel to my favourite game of 2012 and one of the best games I've played finally has a release date: November 11th!

It's on the cover of Game Informer so info/media is coming very soon.

DOOM4, Dishonored 2, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Shadow Warrior 2... can this year get any better?

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No idea why. If they still don't work just go to gameinformer.com and check the news.

EDIT: Oh man, Corvo will be voiced by Stephen Russell, the voice of Garrett in the original Thief. Awesome. :)

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Wow, I'm surprised the release date is that far away; a year ago, they were talking about releasing it right in the middle of the Doom 4/Dark Souls 3/etc. Spring/Summer gauntlet.

I can't wait for this one. Dishonored was the best "triple-A" game made since the phrase "triple-A" has entered the gamer's parlance.

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Dishonored was fun. I thought this was supposed to come out sooner, but I guess not. Looking forward too it, though.

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Good, this gives me ample time to play the first one again!

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Unfortunately for me and unlike everyone else I found Dishonored pretty much boring in quite a few ways.

As for the mentioning of Deus Ex Mankind Divided I am pretty much looking forward to it, in fact it is the only game I am looking forward to this year, however I just might be a little interested in Shadow Warrior 2 despite my general disappointment with the first SW remake.

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Wow! All games that I REALLY want must be released in this year! \m/

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Touchdown said:

EDIT: Oh man, Corvo will be voiced by Stephen Russell, the voice of Garrett in the original Thief. Awesome. :)

Finally!

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Touchdown said:

EDIT: Oh man, Corvo will be voiced by Stephen Russell, the voice of Garrett in the original Thief. Awesome. :)

Garrett my baby, it's been so long

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How much preorder DLC BS are they going to tack onto this game this time around?

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Touchdown said:

EDIT: Oh man, Corvo will be voiced by Stephen Russell, the voice of Garrett in the original Thief. Awesome. :)

Yes! Russell is amazing.

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Glaice said:

How much preorder DLC BS are they going to tack onto this game this time around?



Don't worry, you'll have plenty enough to piss and moan about endlessly.

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I never got around to playing Dishonoured. I need to get the Definitive Edition one day, sure goes on sale a lot.

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So I finished it yesterday, took me ~39h as Emily. Here are some of my thoughts on the game.

My first impressions of Dishonored 2 were not very positive. One of the most amazing aspects of the original game for me was how perfect the movement was: it was butter smooth, you could climb, the running and jumping felt awesome. So you can imagine that when I launched the tutorial for the sequel I got a little pissed off. Arkane apparently thought it was necessary to add the stupid FoV-increase when you sprint which makes my head hurt (literally). There was also the weirdest thing ever - a wobble effect after you stop moving your view (that also made me dizzy). The jumping (and especially landing) suddenly felt stiff. They had to add the 'climbing animations' which just made the process feel clunky and slow (unlike in the first game, DOOM4 or Shadow Warrior 2). So to me the very foundation of the gameplay was already broken in comparison.

Thankfully the wobble effect is gone and the sprint FoV only lasts until you get out of the Tower (for... some reason). The rest... I got used to. It's still worse than the first game though.

Much like in the predecessor one of the best things about the game is the world itself. It feels rich and detailed, almost every room seems to have a story to tell. It's vivid and believable and I just wish we could see more of it (just look at the map, we've only see two places out of many many more). It's wonderful just being in the world because it's that immersive.

The problem is that the actual plot of the game is really REALLY bad. The very progression seems just about as bland as you can get: Delilah steals the throne from you, to get to her you need to eliminate her allies; so you do that, then you deal with her and it's over. There's nothing interesting, surprising or otherwise unexpeted happening at all. No twists, revelations, sudden changes, nothing. The first game, despite being like that too to some degree, at least had some things to break up the pace.

Arkane decided it was a good idea to make our protagonists voiced this time. I've seen this thing done right, I've seen protagonists there were boring, annoying, funny, cringe-worthy, all sorts of things. But I have to say I don't recall ever playing a game where adding a voice to the hero was so utterly pointless. Based on a full Emily playthrough + the beginning with Corvo it looks like they have absolutely nothing interesting to say about anything. Their comments are so pointless that I feel like we could remove their voices and the game would not suffer from it at all. A voiced protagonist is supposed to say stuff thay adds to his/her personality, not feel like a point on a checklist with no actual idea behind it.

The game actually adds an option to "inspect" certain items and in practice it's, again, pointless. Let's say there's a portrait of someone. You can inspect it and Emily... says their name. That's it. The name that's already written underneath the painting. Am I nitpicking or is this completely unnecessary? Talk about a missed opportunity.

Also a special mention to how bad Corvo's voice is. A typical deep, dark voice of a 'troubled' character. And that's with Stephen Russell on board. Meh.

I've always loved the non-lethal solutions in Dishonored, especially because most of them were really questionable and disturbing. Funny how the game praises you for condemning those people to fates worse than death. :) I could talk about that a lot more but what I really want to say is that unfortunately Dishonored 2 does not reach that level of insanity in that field. There is literally just one target (Jindosh) whose 'non-lethal' solution genuinely made me feel uncomfortable. In case of everyone else it's just... kind of boring. Typical 'alternative' solutions without any questionable themes behind them.

One of the cool things is that many levels have their own unique features. Everyone remembers the Lady Boyle Party where you can wander around peacefully because it's a masquerade ball. Thankfully there are multiple elements like that in Dishonored 2 and that just adds to the variety and makes each mission a little bit more special. This saves the day a little bit considering how stale the actual plot is.

Our base of operations this time is a ship called Dreadful Whale. When I heard about it my initial reaction was that this could offer a lot of possibilities for unique events. Maybe somebody attacks us on an open sea. Or we have to retrieve something from a sunken vessel. Or there's a storm or sea monsters or... something. Unfortunately it's nothing more than an intermission. In fact, it offers FAR LESS than the Hounds Pit Pub, both in terms of space, variety and events. There are only two or three people at most there (what?) and only one of them is a crew member, there's no store or upgrade station (because those only appear during missions), there's almost no exploration, almost no one to talk to, no events taking place... just nothing. In Dishonored you could see what everyone's been up to, there were some things to do. In this game there's none of that.

In terms of gameplay it's still Dishonored. A wonderful open-ended experience with tons of lore, exploration, verticality, many different routes and ways to play it. The Heart is back which is nice, the powers are interesting and there are a couple of cool additions such as drop takedowns or chocking alerted enemies. I only wish the Bonecharm system was different. At one point I stopped paying attention to them at all because they're so boring and tedious to manage. And of course the AI has some weird problems with alertness and detection (like getting all worked up over something that happened a long time ago just because you load a save). I've said it about Mankind Divided but someone should really do some serious work on non-combat AI as soon as possible.

Generally it's a clunkier version of Dishonored 1 with some new cool additions and generally satisfying level design.

The technical side is... I don't think I need to say it. The Void engine is a piece of shit and I hope they never use it again. It looks really nice sometimes (and I mean REALLY nice). And sometimes it doesn't look much better than the first game while still requiring a beast to run it at acceptable framerate. Hey Bethesda, can you let id do all your technical work from now on? They are the only company you have that actually knows how to make good engines.

Overally, I did enjoy the game and I like it a lot more now than after my first couple of hours. The problem is that to me Dishonored was one of the best games ever and an incredibly positive surprise. Dis2 is ok... it's more of the (mostly) the same which is fine for the second game in the franchise. It's not a massive step up and a little bit of a step down in some areas. It's still a game I would recommend in a heartbeat to anyone who likes Thief/DX style of games.

There are more things to discuss but this is already a wall of text so I'll just leave it at that for now.





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Alright, I normally love immersive sims but I always get bored of the first Dishonored because it's too easy once you learn to exploit blink. The heart is OP as well and destroys exploration.

I haven't followed Dishonored 2 but how is it compared to the first? Do I have higher chances of liking it?

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If you didn't like Dishonored 1, you won't like 2. Dishonored 2 is basically a worse version of Dishonored (and it's still got the heart and blink). My only caveat to the above is that you can be a "more of the same but slightly worse" sequel of the best game of at least the last decade and still be a pretty damn good game... but if you didn't like said best game of the last decade, you won't like its sequel.

My big issues with Dishonored 2 are how weak its early levels are, and the way it frames some of the assassinations as boss fights. The bad early levels are the bigger problem; Dishonored 1 gave you a tutorial mission, and then threw you into one of the largest and most involved missions in the game. Dishonored 2 has a dedicated tutorial, two "nothing" levels, one decent one, and then the awful clockwork mansion mission. Framing so many of the assassinations as boss-fights with unavoidable scripted sequences is also lame. It's like they took a look at the reception Deus Ex: Human Revolution's boss fights got and said "Hot damn, we need some of that in our game!"

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DooM_RO said:

Alright, I normally love immersive sims but I always get bored of the first Dishonored because it's too easy once you learn to exploit blink. The heart is OP as well and destroys exploration.

I haven't followed Dishonored 2 but how is it compared to the first? Do I have higher chances of liking it?


There's a dedicated 'no powers' mode (you can just refuse to take them from the Outsider) if that makes you feel any better about it.

Cynical said:

Framing so many of the assassinations as boss-fights with unavoidable scripted sequences is also lame. It's like they took a look at the reception Deus Ex: Human Revolution's boss fights got and said "Hot damn, we need some of that in our game!"


What the hell are you talking about? Have we played the same game? There are no forced scripted boss fights in Dishonored 2.

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Mission 3 target and the associated cutscene (if you KO her before she "turns", she'll get back up so that the scripted events can fire; if you shadow-walk KO her after she "turns", it breaks the entire mission scripting), Mission 4 target (walk into lab -> instant cutscene and bots go on alert), final mission target. All of those are heavily scripted sequences framed as boss fights, and in every case, the game suffers for it. Especially the final boss, good god that was awful.

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Cynical said:

If you didn't like Dishonored 1, you won't like 2. Dishonored 2 is basically a worse version of Dishonored (and it's still got the heart and blink). My only caveat to the above is that you can be a "more of the same but slightly worse" sequel of the best game of at least the last decade and still be a pretty damn good game... but if you didn't like said best game of the last decade, you won't like its sequel.

My big issues with Dishonored 2 are how weak its early levels are, and the way it frames some of the assassinations as boss fights. The bad early levels are the bigger problem; Dishonored 1 gave you a tutorial mission, and then threw you into one of the largest and most involved missions in the game. Dishonored 2 has a dedicated tutorial, two "nothing" levels, one decent one, and then the awful clockwork mansion mission. Framing so many of the assassinations as boss-fights with unavoidable scripted sequences is also lame. It's like they took a look at the reception Deus Ex: Human Revolution's boss fights got and said "Hot damn, we need some of that in our game!"


I think the level design was really good but it has a problem common in all immersive modern immersive sims, namely that alternative paths are too obviously telegraphed. You can tell that the developers spent a lot of time making that ventilation fan or overhead pipe obvious but not too obvious. The problem is that after playing multiple modern immersive sims I can instantly recognize them so alternative routes are kind of easy to find. I also had this problem in DE:MD.

But abusing the blink is what kills it for me. Why observe the level when I can just hop around? There's plenty of mana potions anyway.

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If Blink was the #1 killer for you, Emily's Far Reach is generally a bit less powerful. It's less flexible in where it can take you, and you're visible while moving. It's still a tool you'll use a ton, but it's not quite as utterly dominant.

That said, a weaker blink causes some of its own issues in her design.

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Cynical said:

Mission 3 target and the associated cutscene (if you KO her before she "turns", she'll get back up so that the scripted events can fire; if you shadow-walk KO her after she "turns", it breaks the entire mission scripting), Mission 4 target (walk into lab -> instant cutscene and bots go on alert), final mission target. All of those are heavily scripted sequences framed as boss fights, and in every case, the game suffers for it. Especially the final boss, good god that was awful.


M3: None of that counts as a DXHR-style boss fight. You can even just leave the area if you want. If there's a problem with scripting they should patch it, I haven't encountered any bugs there.
M4: Did you even try to be, you know, stealthy? I got up there without triggering any cutscenes. In fact even when I screwed up and got detected, no cutscence were triggered.
Final: Same thing. Sure there is a fight... if you pay no attention to your surroundings. But if you're going for High Chaos slaughterfest, I guess you shouldn't be surprised that there are semi-action sequences (again, nothing as outrageously bad as in HR).

DooM_RO said:

I think the level design was really good but it has a problem common in all immersive modern immersive sims, namely that alternative paths are too obviously telegraphed. You can tell that the developers spent a lot of time making that ventilation fan or overhead pipe obvious but not too obvious. The problem is that after playing multiple modern immersive sims I can instantly recognize them so alternative routes are kind of easy to find. I also had this problem in DE:MD.

But abusing the blink is what kills it for me. Why observe the level when I can just hop around? There's plenty of mana potions anyway.


The question I have is: what is it that you want then? Invisible paths? Pixel hunting? It's not like alterative paths in older games such as Thief or Deus Ex were super hidden and almost impossible to find. Besides the whole point is to offer the player multiple options so that the game works with their playstyle, not to hide routes as much as possible. It was the beauty of the first DX: it's not about 'what' but 'how'.

Also, what kind of player are you in those types of games? I'm generally trying to be nonlethal ghost, that is do not kill anyone and don't get detected. With that in mind even with Blink I've never found the first game or the DLC to be super easy on the highest difficulty. Sure if you just want to beat it, it offers a massive advantage but if you try to be stealthy then I don't see how it makes it too easy.

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Touchdown said:

M3: None of that counts as a DXHR-style boss fight. You can even just leave the area if you want. If there's a problem with scripting they should patch it, I haven't encountered any bugs there.
M4: Did you even try to be, you know, stealthy? I got up there without triggering any cutscenes. In fact even when I screwed up and got detected, no cutscence were triggered.
Final: Same thing. Sure there is a fight... if you pay no attention to your surroundings. But if you're going for High Chaos slaughterfest, I guess you shouldn't be surprised that there are semi-action sequences (again, nothing as outrageously bad as in HR).

The question I have is: what is it that you want then? Invisible paths? Pixel hunting? It's not like alterative paths in older games such as Thief or Deus Ex were super hidden and almost impossible to find. Besides the whole point is to offer the player multiple options so that the game works with their playstyle, not to hide routes as much as possible. It was the beauty of the first DX: it's not about 'what' but 'how'.

Also, what kind of player are you in those types of games? I'm generally trying to be nonlethal ghost, that is do not kill anyone and don't get detected. With that in mind even with Blink I've never found the first game or the DLC to be super easy on the highest difficulty. Sure if you just want to beat it, it offers a massive advantage but if you try to be stealthy then I don't see how it makes it too easy.


They were less obvious in Thief and Deus Ex.

Also, I don't think it's about freedom, these games were never about choice for me. It's about adapting to certain situations using the equipment/options I have at my disposal. If the game expects me to search secrets only because of completionism or offering me choice then it immediately becomes less interesting. Stealth and alternative paths should be difficult and require observation, alternatives to a situation when the obvious solution fails.

When I play Dishonored lets say I end up in an alleyway. "Gee there is that thing with long legs over there but since this is a long corridor, the developers will probably put a ventilation fan somewhere or some pipes". My point is, they should be less obvious.

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What you're describing is PRECISELY what DX/Thief were. You see a laser grid, there's gonna be a vent shaft. The front entrance is guarded, there's gonna be a side path. I really don't understand your point, it almost seems like your expectations are so specific that nothing will ever meet them.

But saying those games are not about choice is simply absurd. So the fact that you can shoot OR sneak OR hack your way through OR look for an alternative path OR need a certain item, skill or power means they're not about choice and freedom? This makes no sense. You're saying that they're about adaptation. Yes, you can adapt. But that's just ONE of the available options. You can shift your focus to something else and the game will still work. You can choose how to approach the situation. That was the big revelation about Deus Ex. And you're saying that's not the case.

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Touchdown said:

M4: Did you even try to be, you know, stealthy? I got up there without triggering any cutscenes. In fact even when I screwed up and got detected, no cutscence were triggered.

As soon as I walked into the lab, I got an instant cutscene, even though neither the target nor any of his bots had LOS on me.

Final: Same thing. Sure there is a fight... if you pay no attention to your surroundings. But if you're going for High Chaos slaughterfest, I guess you shouldn't be surprised that there are semi-action sequences (again, nothing as outrageously bad as in HR).

Spoiler

Even if you are paying attention, the fight there is still mandatory. Make the corrupt rune, put her soul back in her, she goes into the painting, put the rune on her throne... you still have to follow her into the painting, kill the clones (most of them can be taken down stealthily, but the last two have to be fought straight-up since three of them have overlapping fields of vision), real one teleports in, score a "fighting KO" on her.

I tried swapping the rune without ever alerting her or her dogs, but if you do this, the scripting breaks; she says some line that doesn't make any sense, and then sits and does nothing until you alert her in some way. If you put her soul back in her after putting the rune on the throne without getting discovered, she instantly aggros and goes into her "fighting without putting her soul back into her" routine.

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First of all, USE SPOILER TAGS, not everyone has finished the game.

Second, no, the fight is not mandatory. That's because

Spoiler

the real Delilah is hidden away above the entrance once you get inside the painting. You can climb there and take her out before her clones teleport in. I know because that's what I did.

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Spoiler

Her clones don't "teleport" in; they're there from the start, hidden as the statues. This is why you can stealth-KO all but two of them; if you look close, you can identify which statues are the clones, but you can't get all of them this way, because three of them have overlapping fields of vision (so when you take out one of those three, the other two come to life). I didn't know that she was above the painting; I tried exploring the area, but couldn't find a way up there.

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I enjoyed some of the level design in Dishonoured 2. The clock-work mansion and the time-shifting ruin were out standing, and the environments were beautifully rendered throughout.

But the writing was very flat and 'by-the-numbers', and none of the characters held my interest. I played through the first Dishonured several times to see all there was to see, but after one high-chaos run with Emily, I don't feel any need to revisit Karnaca.

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