Fallout 76 - New Trailer

It's nice to see Bethesda's finally admitted to themselves that their quest design and NPC dialogue are shit and made a game that embraces the one thing they're good at : roaming around mindlessly for a dozen hours until you're bored out of your freaking mind.

It's true all of that is rubbish in their games ( and story, progression, etc), but at least it provided context/gameplay loop variation to "go-kill-everything-in-copy-pasta-dungeon".
Which makes you wonder how this will hold up to similar games as they're left with their typical crappy combat and no "but the mods will fix it!".
At least Anthem/Destiny/Division have good gameplay and run on much better tech.
 
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For me, the vast majority of enjoyment in FO3 and FO4 comes from exploring handcrafted and bespoke content - at will.

The freedom and amount of hand-placed stuff you can find in these modern Bethesda games is pretty unprecedented.

To me, finding something with a purpose and a history in some long forgotten vault - is very compelling to me. It gives the world a sense of place and creates a reason for me to care.

While I love looter shooters in many ways, none of them have much in the way of meaningful exploration. They're generally just large playfields of stuff to kill with randomly generated loot.

Being able to take a good friend or two - and then go explore the hundreds of unique locations in a Fallout game - each player with his own role - is like a dream for me.

I love the freeform character development system of FO4 - where you can combine a ridiculous amount of perks just the way you want.

So, one guy could be the brute force tank, one could be a support character with emphasis on healing and drugs - whilst yet another could be the "tech" guy granting access to locked rooms and terminals.

That sort of shared cooperative experience is delightful - and reminds me a lot of my PnP days.

Getting rid of traditional quests was probably the right choice, because they can be hard to implement in a multiplayer environment without bogging down the experience with a lot of waiting around while players finish dialogues.

That said, I would hope there's some kind of narrative drive on top of the freeform exploration, as the whole thing might end up a little shallow without it.

For the "I despise multiplayer on principle" crowd, there's always the next Bethsoft game.

FO76 is not FO5, it's obviously just a thing to enjoy on the side, if you're into that sort of game.
 
Huh? Their own level/world designers ( at GDC) did a presentation where they talked about how they rely on mass production on dungeons/etc and use procedural generation, how they need to quickly "get them out as possible", describing it more similar to Ford assembly line than using "handcrafted" approach.
This is a huge contrast to how studios like Arkane handle this ( who also talked about this).

What Bethesda does is clever design of "potato land"…fill the world with high density of locales and encounters to always keeps player "hooked" to gameplay loop ( explore->kill->loot->craft->explore…).

Drawback is when you "see through the formulae" and realize it's the coat painting of same type of what you've already experienced dozen times over. Even high level/lore encounters ( like dragons) are frequently reused like this.

And since they have typically poor combat systems and very easily/early broken loot/economy/progression( this is something that overhauls like Requiem primarily fix) there is no real "mechanical" reason to explore either.

Same is with very simplistic quest design ( go fetch and go kill, with little to no narrative. I don't think they even have dedicated quest writers/teams), encounter design ( Boss fights are recycled common opponents), etc.

In short, size of their games/worlds vastly exceeds content they're able to put into it. ( this is why Skyrim so much relies on Radiant quests and Fallout on settlements)

They need to either scale down their worlds or expand number of people working on their games ( with dedicated quest writers, encounter designers, etc).
 
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Huh? Their own level/world designers ( at GDC) did a presentation where they talked about how they rely on mass production on dungeons/etc and use procedural generation, how they need to quickly "get them out as possible", describing it more similar to Ford assembly line than using "handcrafted" approach.
This is a huge contrast to how studios like Arkane handle this ( who also talked about this).

Could you source this? I should be very interested to hear them talk about FO3 and FO4 dungeons being procedurally generated.

Because that's 100% counter to Todd Howard explaining that, after Oblivion, they expanded their dungeon design team to 8 people focusing entirely on building dungeons, by hand, in future games.

Of course, that's not to say every pixel is handplaced - as they're obviously re-using assets in dungeons.

Arkane games are essentially one dungeon with a subset of 10-15 levels.

It's a little easier to care for each level in that case :)

However, for a huge open world game with hundreds of dungeons - TES/FO3/FO4 - are in the lead, as far as I'm concerned - when it comes to interesting locations.
 
Here's a direct quote about this:

https://www.pcgamer.com/skyrim-has-a-hand-crafted-world-with-no-two-areas-alike/

Bethesda promise that the game's dungeons will be much more varied than they were in Oblivion. Where Oblivion had one dungeon designer, Skyrim has eight. The team will be working on keeping Skyrim's dungeons varied with puzzles and traps, to ensure that "no two areas are alike." An example of one such dungeon is the Bleak Falls Barrows, which features ancient Nord catacombs carved between huge tree roots and underground rivers. There will be 120 dungeons in total.

AFAIK, FO4 expanded this team even more - though it's hard to tell.

Doesn't exactly sound "procedurally generated" or mass produced, now does it :)

Of course, anyone who's ever actually experienced FO3 and FO4 locations would know they couldn't have been generated by algorithms.

Doesn't mean they don't have tools to aid in quickly putting together a skeleton of a dungeon to work from, but I would expect any game to do that these days.

That's how they build stuff with white boxing and what not.
 
Here's a direct quote about this:

https://www.pcgamer.com/skyrim-has-a-hand-crafted-world-with-no-two-areas-alike/

Bethesda promise that the game's dungeons will be much more varied than they were in Oblivion. Where Oblivion had one dungeon designer, Skyrim has eight. The team will be working on keeping Skyrim's dungeons varied with puzzles and traps, to ensure that "no two areas are alike." An example of one such dungeon is the Bleak Falls Barrows, which features ancient Nord catacombs carved between huge tree roots and underground rivers. There will be 120 dungeons in total.

AFAIK, FO4 expanded this team even more - though it's hard to tell.

Doesn't exactly sound "procedurally generated" or mass produced, now does it :)

Of course, anyone who's ever actually experienced FO3 and FO4 locations would know they couldn't have been generated by algorithms.

Doesn't mean they don't have tools to aid in quickly putting together a skeleton of a dungeon to work from, but I would expect any game to do that these days.

That's how they build stuff with white boxing and what not.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBAM27YbKZg

They do not use algorithms, procedural generation is used to add objects/etc.

However how they talk and describe the process it's very clear they sacrifice original, handcrafted design as result of mass production.Ofc, no two areas will be identical.

And you can see this mismatch also in minor details, object placement or some of the models everywhere (like finding a plane in Fallout IV stripped of it's electronics by raiders, only it's missing entire textures for it).
 
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBAM27YbKZg

They do not use algorithms, procedural generation is used to add objects/etc.

However how they talk and describe the process it's very clear they sacrifice original, handcrafted design as result of mass production .

And you can see this mismatch in object placement or some of the models everywhere (like finding a plane in Fallout IV stripped of it's electronics by raiders, only it's missing entire textures for it).

Could you find the time index? It's an hour long :)

I don't exactly know why missing textures means a level isn't handcrafted, though. That's a pretty common issue in games, I find.

Again, I've greatly enjoyed my time exploring locations in all modern Bethsoft games - and they don't feel mass produced or procedurally generated to me.

Them not being handcrafted would also make Todd Howard a big liar - so I'm really curious to hear a quote to that effect.

Based on a few minutes of that video, they're talking about developing tools to aid the production of dungeons in a way that makes hundreds of them feasible within the development cycle.

That doesn't mean they're not handcrafted or cared for. In fact, I think it means they CAN care for them and yet still actually finish them - which would seem to be the point.
 
Well if they can ever fix the AMD graphic rainbow texture in Fallout 4 let me know. As of right now you have to download and install a texture mod to fix this problem.


0ilztPT.jpg
 
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Well if they can ever fix the AMD graphic rainbow texture in Fallout 4 let me know. As of right now you have to download and install a texture mod to fix this problem.


0ilztPT.jpg

FO4 also has a problem with a strange shimmering during the night.

It's really annoying and I've yet to find a fix.

Still a wonderful game, though :)
 
Watching more of the video and reading the YT comments, I think I understand the criticism.

It seems some people are genuinely expecting hundreds of literally completely unique locations (like hundreds of Bioshocks in one game) - with minimal re-use of assets and building blocks.

I didn't know people were unrealistic on that level, to be honest.

Content in modern games requires an absolutely disturbing amount of work in terms of detail and fidelity.

That's why relatively short games like Bioshock Infinite or Last of Us take 3-5 years to create.

I would NEVER expect a "Bioshock" level of detail in every single location, in a game with hundreds of dungeons.

That would literally require decades to produce.

If THAT is what you expect when someone says "handcrafted" - I can certainly understand the criticism.

Personally, I just want the sense of a location with something unique to find - that I haven't seen before. I want unique layouts using a large variety of textures and settings. I want stuff like unique audio journals or emails - etc.

So, for me, the locations in modern Bethsoft games are fantastic - and I know of no other game with THAT amount of locations with THAT level of detail and fidelity.

I hope that makes my appreciation more clear.
 
Thanks for the video, though. The more I watch, the more I appreciate the insane amount of work they've done to make this process possible in the first place.

Star Citizen content is going to be built in a similar way, or - at least - that's the plan.

It should be interesting to see how they can combine their procedural tools with the amount of bespoke fidelity they're aiming for.

The amount of content necessary for SC is sickening, so they better figure out smart ways :)
 
The detector is working better than expected, I thought it'll continue only as +.
:evilgrin:
 
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Watching more of the video and reading the YT comments, I think I understand the criticism.

It seems some people are genuinely expecting hundreds of literally completely unique locations (like hundreds of Bioshocks in one game) - with minimal re-use of assets and building blocks.

I didn't know people were unrealistic on that level, to be honest.

Content in modern games requires an absolutely disturbing amount of work in terms of detail and fidelity.

That's why relatively short games like Bioshock Infinite or Last of Us take 3-5 years to create.

I would NEVER expect a "Bioshock" level of detail in every single location, in a game with hundreds of dungeons.

That would literally require decades to produce.

If THAT is what you expect when someone says "handcrafted" - I can certainly understand the criticism.

Personally, I just want the sense of a location with something unique to find - that I haven't seen before. I want unique layouts using a large variety of textures and settings. I want stuff like unique audio journals or emails - etc.

So, for me, the locations in modern Bethsoft games are fantastic - and I know of no other game with THAT amount of locations with THAT level of detail and fidelity.

I hope that makes my appreciation more clear.

We'll simply disagree then.

I would gladly accept half as many locations/dungeons in their games that have:

- less reused assets

- less predictable layout ( linear tunnel spiraling backward from beginning to end)

- more distinct art style and visuals

- actually containing a meaningful story or quest, with c&c and narrative

- worldbuilding that is more immersive and contributes to world history and lore ( less goofy bandit notes, something more logical and closely related to world events)

- good encounter design, open ended gameplay ( that has impact on environment) and actually unique boss fights

- better gameplay and integrated stealth mechanics

- better rewarding loot ( at least no leveled rng "Boss" rewards)

While they've definitely improved since Daggerfall going forward and become more efficient at production, it's still heavily Quantity over Quality oriented.

That's why it's puzzling why Arkane games sell so poorly in comparison: "gameplay core" is similar , only it's far better executed.
 
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We'll simply disagree then.

I would gladly accept half as many locations/dungeons in their games that have:

- less reused assets

- less predictable layout ( linear tunnel spiraling backward from beginning to end)

- more distinct art style and visuals

- actually containing a meaningful story or quest, with c&c and narrative

- worldbuilding that is more immersive and contributes to world history and lore ( less goofy bandit notes, something more logical and closely related to world events)

- good encounter design, open ended gameplay ( that has impact on environment) and actually unique boss fights

- better gameplay and integrated stealth mechanics

- better rewarding loot ( at least no leveled rng "Boss" rewards)

While they've definitely improved since Daggerfall going forward and become more efficient at production, it's still heavily Quantity over Quality oriented.

That's why it's puzzling why Arkane games sell so poorly in comparison: "gameplay core" is similar , only it's far better executed.

We don't actually disagree that much, I think. Well, unless we really want to :)

I don't want to, though.

Also, I adore Arkane games!

Though, Arkane games are completely different beasts. They're immersive sims - with the emphasis on a single - or a few - locations.

Bethsoft games are intended to be these huge practically endless experiences that you can lose yourself in - and keep going back to.

Singleplayer MMOs, if you will.

But we also agree that less locations would be better.

I would actually prefer something like 20-30 locations with the COMBINED detail of all the locations in FO3 or FO4.

But I'm not making the game - and I don't really have a say.

So, I'll have to make do with what I get.

I do appreciate that I could sit down at any point in time and play Fallout 4 - and STILL see something I've never seen before, even after hundreds of hours of play.

There's something to be said for that.

But I hear what you're saying :)
 
I've never had the feeling that Bethesda's locations (post Daggerfall) were procedurally generated in any way. The loot yes but not the locations themselves. I don't see how anyone could get that impression.

I also don't think their locations are very linear or predictable in any way. If there's one thing Bethesda is good at it's filling their games with a lot of locations that are interesting in one way or another.

Now if they could only hire better writers and learn how to make interesting characters. That would be scary. :)
 
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I've never had the feeling that Bethesda's locations (post Daggerfall) were procedurally generated in any way. The loot yes but not the locations themselves. I don't see how anyone could get that impression.

I also don't think their locations are very linear or predictable in any way. If there's one thing Bethesda is good at it's filling their games with a lot of locations that are interesting in one way or another.

Now if they could only hire better writers and learn how to make interesting characters. That would be scary. :)

I know what Bobo means when he says this:

- less predictable layout ( linear tunnel spiraling backward from beginning to end)

Leaving aside the semantics of what officially qualifies as procedurally generated, there were several of the "lowest tier" of random dungeons in Skyrim that, while not identical, were very similar with nothing particularly unique about them.
 
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It's always going to be a subjective thing. Skyrim had its share of similar locations, I will grant that - but they all had unique stuff to find, be it a set of journals scattered about - or some story told through the environment - with dead bodies lying next to a glass with a poison flask near it - or whatever.

According to Howard, there's not a single "random" dungeon anywhere in Skyrim. There are randomly generated radiant quests that take place in dungeons, but the dungeons themselves are handcrafted (using building blocks, though).

I don't think even Morrowind or Oblivion had random dungeons, they were just a lot less distinct due to there being only a single person responsible for making them.

Arena and Daggerfall had random dungeons, though.

Again, there's no way a game with hundreds of underground locations can provide the level of detail a game like Dishonored or Prey can - for obvious reasons.

I guess we all have different expectations and levels of fidelity we demand when we go exploring.

All I know with absolutely certainty is that there's no other game in existence with the size and scope of Skyrim/FO3/FO4 with the level of detail and care put into the dungeons - re-used assets and building blocks notwithstanding.

That doesn't mean it's for everyone - and I'm not going to deny that the writing in these games is - for the most part - mediocre at best, and pretty crappy at worst.

However, there's quite a lot of interesting little stories you can find when you go exploring at will. Tons of little mini stories - some of which are actually quite good.

It's just that it's not consistent and, as such, feels off and doesn't compare to something like Witcher 3 - which is almost entirely driven by its narrative and strong writing.

It's a different kind of enjoyment for a different mindset.

Do I enjoy the exploration of something like Prey or System Shock more than the average Fallout 4 location? Most definitely.

But I can't play Prey for literally thousands of hours and still find something significant that's new.

That's the magic of modern Bethsoft games.
 
Bad choice of word on my part, considering the context of the conversation. I meant "random" in the modern colloquial sense. I meant there were a few of those dungeons scattered about the map. They were mostly filler content, and they mostly felt like that.
 
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Bad choice of word on my part. I meant "random" in the modern colloquial sense. I meant they were a few of those dungeons scattered about the map. They were mostly filler content, and they mostly felt like that.

I can't disagree. To be fair, I would say roughly one third of Skyrim dungeons felt samey to one extent or another - but, even so, they almost all had unique stuff to find.

The reason it worked for me, is that I never actually knew what I could expect - which is key. That's how I managed to keep my sense of wonder throughout - and the reason I could keep playing it with new characters. The sensation of not having exhausted content - which is something I feel much sooner in almost all other games out there.

Once you establish that a game only has so many tricks, it doesn't really matter how many dungeons or locations it has.

That's why I despise (purely) procedurally generated content - because not a single location feels right.

Games like No Man's Sky and Elite Dangerous are perfect examples of why size and numbers mean nothing.

As much as I like games like Witcher 3 (yes, I actually like it), Gothic, Risen, Two Worlds and so on - none of those really compare to Bethsoft games when it comes to dungeon exploration.

But that's just one aspect of these games, and it all depends on what aspects you enjoy the most.

As I said, I think 100+ dungeons is way too many - and I don't need that many.

I don't actually need thousands of hours in a game.

All games represent a compromise in some way, and there's no doubt a game like Skyrim sacrificed a lot of stuff to be what it wanted to be.

Same goes for Witcher 3, by the way.
 
I can't disagree. To be fair, I would say roughly one third of Skyrim dungeons felt samey to one extent or another - but, even so, they almost all had unique stuff to find.
Welcome back D'Art! Not sure we played the same game because far as I remember (and I still have Skyrim installed on my computer) the vast majority of this "unique" stuff in Skyrim's dungeons might have consisted of a couple of books on a subject that differed from those in the previous dungeon and/or some weapons or armor with different stats than in a previous dungeon. They might be unique but only in the widest meaning of this word. I certainly don't recall that really unique stuff was as numerous as you claim
 
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