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Ghost Story Games - Ken Levine and former Irrational devs' new studio

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by LESS T_T, Feb 23, 2017.

  1. Somberlain Arcane Zionist Agent

    Somberlain
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    That's probably not a good idea. Bioshit: Shitfinite was enough to melt the brain of an average game journo. Imagine if he made a game that's actually intelligent or challenging.
     
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  2. Morgoth Arcane

    Morgoth
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    Ken is no longer required to make a game pandering to tiny journo brains. He has been set free by his benign Take 2 overlords (Jews).
     
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  3. Excommunicator Arcane

    Excommunicator
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    [​IMG]

    The amount of light in that office seems unbearable not to mention how loud it must be with those hard surfaces
     
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  4. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    Poor use of space too. Too much room between desks. That's a shit load of rent ($$$ per square foot vs how much square footage being put to use).

    In addition, I have no faith whatsoever that Ken 'Hook Nose' Levine will actually put something together worth playing.
    System Shock was a fluke. Bioshock was the truth.
     
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  5. pippin Guest

    pippin
    perfect office space for Finland
     
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  6. HoboForEternity In every buttons you press Patron

    HoboForEternity
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    I still give ken the benefit of doubt. I always think bioshock and especially infinite crippled system are the result of suit intervention. The fact that the e3 footage exist, they have 2 different covers for infinite, and he quit after infinite strengthen my assumption.

    Let him work in a a less restricting environment that let him experiment and not compromising depth. We will see.
     
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  7. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    https://media.zencast.fm/literate-gamer/episodes/40

     
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  8. vortex Fabulous Optimist

    vortex
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    If someone did listen, which games did he mention? I only understand the Prey.
     
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  9. LESS T_T Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    LESS T_T
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  10. Ivan Arcane

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    "immersive sim" in b4 this just turns out to be Gone Home
     
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  11. Shinji Learned

    Shinji
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    So the folks that worked on Fallout New Vegas don't stand a chance, huh?
     
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  12. Fedora Master Cipher

    Fedora Master
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    Ken "I don't understand quantum physics, that's why I wrote a story about it" Levine
     
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  13. Morgoth Arcane

    Morgoth
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    http://www.pcgamer.com/ghost-story-games-formerly-irrational-games-is-making-an-immersive-sim/

     
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  14. Ash Arcane

    Ash
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    >we're building an immersive sim.
    >we want people with interest in borderlands and shadow of mordor style games.

    Huh? Dishonored/Prey or NuDX are popular and mainstream enough. While they're not the most ideal games to be inspired by they're more relevant to reference when seeking out talent and passion for the FP immersive sim vision they allegedly have. Hmm, I suppose those references are there to draw in a wider pool of candidates, perhaps.
     
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  15. LESS T_T Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    LESS T_T
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    This news ("Take-Two plans to only release games with 'recurrent consumer spending' hooks", "It may not always be an online model, it probably won't always be a virtual currency model, but there will be some ability to engage in an ongoing basis with our titles after release across the board. That's a sea change in our business.") makes me wonder about Ken Levine's next game.

    Incidentally(?), from what I can gather from Levine's past talks and interviews, his new game fits well in the Take Two's "games as a service", "recurrent consumer spending" strategy. Ken has been talked about his new game will be something like Civilization in terms of content structure. He said he wants to make a modular narrative game that can be replayed many times and is played different every time like Civ, and he thinks about releasing new modules/expansions after the release to add new narrative elements that will makes the game more replayable.

    If that ambition is still there and somehow realized, I guess that's one way of survival in the new world for immersive sim. (In a way it's going back to one of its roots: D&D.) Let's see if he will open a Pandora's box I guess?

    edit: Oh yeah there's also Hitman's episodic and live service model.
     
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  16. I ASK INANE QUESTIONS Augur Patron

    I ASK INANE QUESTIONS
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    >we're building an immersive sim.
    >we want people with interest in borderlands and shadow of mordor style games.

    Nothing in there about inspiration, it's about work experience. Building environment for an open-world game is different enough from building levels for more linear games like Dishonored, and they are obviously building something open-world or semi-open world, the ad basically admits as much, especially with requirements like
    • Experience in modular level construction and lighting/atmosphere.
    • Unreal Engine 4 experience, including terrain/landscape editing
    Also, speaking of inspiration, you missed this line:
    >Deep knowledge of and experience with development of FPS/action/RPG/strategy/immersive sim titles.
     
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  17. LESS T_T Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    LESS T_T
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    Job posting for Senior AI Programmer: https://chp.tbe.taleo.net/chp04/ats/careers/requisition.jsp?org=GAMES2K&cws=49&rid=2216

    I wonder why they keep adding that Metacritic bullshit requirement.
     
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  18. Fronzel Neekburm Erudite Patron

    Fronzel Neekburm
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    Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Codex USB, 2014 Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    He didn't just veer a bit towards popamole, he made it his guiding principle for well over a decade now. Here, have a look at this gem of an article detailing the development of the original Bioshock. Not only does it portray ol' Ken as a borderline-psychotic diva, it also shows that he was in fact the very driving force behind taking what should have been the next logical step in the evolution of the System Shock series (have a look at the early design document for some really mind-blowing stuff) and turing it into dumbed-down popamole dreck. Long story short: They showcased a highly scripted, action-laden demo at E3 which was very well-received among the attending imbeciles, so Levine decided on a whim to turn the whole game into that. And unfortunately, this decision ultimately paid off for them financially.

    Rather than coming up with something that lives up to the legacy of Shock 2 or, hell, even Swat 4, he spent the last decade creating their mentally handicapped stepchildren. Given his track record, I take anything he says about not churning out dumbed down products with a grain of salt. It's lip service, nothing more. I'll believe he's still capable of making a good game when I play it.
     
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  19. Morgoth Arcane

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    You can't make something living up to the legacy of Shock 2 on a shitty Xbox 360 and gamepad controls. Besides, Ken saw which way the wind was blowing and opted for a mass market product. Smart business decision, even if it makes die-hard fans butthurt.
     
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  20. Fronzel Neekburm Erudite Patron

    Fronzel Neekburm
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    Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Codex USB, 2014 Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    Muh experimental spirit that harkens back to the LGS era!
    Muh old school ethos!
     
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  21. Cross Savant

    Cross
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    Any number of console action-adventure games have more immersive sim DNA in them than BioShock.

    Levine had no involvement with SWAT 4. He was the lead for System Shock 2. That game was also a collaboration with Looking Glass which, in hindsight, was probably an important factor in its quality. The article you posted even mentions Levine talking smack about Looking Glass, implying that they pushed back against some of his questionable ideas back then:

    Another highlight from that article:
    [​IMG]

    Their response:

    :prosper:

    Though the article makes it seem as if the game was dumbed down heavily in response to QA feedback, when it was always the main goal, if documents like these, from the game's pitch, are any indication:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2017
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  22. Zenith Savant

    Zenith
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    Ooh, is this finally turning into a general "let's trash Levine" thread? I'll join in, sure.

    Postmortem: Bioshock @ Gamasutra
    Note that they switched the focus towards a linear corridor shooter in 2006 (after E3 2006). Meaning that the January 2007 demo from the other article was already a dumbed-down version compared to their own original vision (vision, which itself involved getting that precious cowadooty audience from the get go), and they had to go in and streamline it even further.
    Also, reminder that Levine kept saying it was the deepest game they ever made etc etc way into 2007 regardless of any changes in priorities.

    Bioshock: A Defence @ Eurogamer
    Here's an article that suggests you quit your whining and appreciate Bioshock for the masterpiece it is. You're just playing it wrong, duh. Do you want video games to remain a ghetto? What are you, some sort of elitist? Sure it's severely flawed in every single way, but it's better than nothing, right? - so surely it deserved to be the highest rated PC game of all time.
    I bet there are now several generations that think "gamer entitlement"/"gamer elitism" are relatively new gamejourno cliches that started with Cuphead Dragon Age 2 / Mass Effect 3. Well here's a reminder from '07 that it was always shit.
     
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  23. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Was it? Let's look at two companies, Irrational Games and Arkane Studios. Both developed games with mass appeal, but Arkane clearly tried harder to cleave to oldschool immersive sim design principles. Did one really do markedly better than the other? I guess Bioshock: Infinite was a more commercially successful product than Dishonored 2 and certainly Prey, but it also killed the company. So it seems like a wash.
     
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  24. Morgoth Arcane

    Morgoth
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    Irrational faltered because Ken was tired of the strains of AAA development and wanted to move on, not because Take 2 thought the studio was doomed due to sub-par (?) sales. Back in the Xbox 360 era, you didn't have many options in terms of funding and distribution. But then came around Steam, Kickstarter, the resurgence of smaller hardcore games, and Ken jumped at the opportunity.

    Ironically, he's still under the patronage of Take 2, but he got what he wanted anyway.
     
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  25. Latro Arcane

    Latro
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    what exactly are programmer egos? wouldn't that be a good thing for a videogame? it payed off in Thief didn't it? Thief also had pretty good design...
     
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