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System Shock 1 vs 2 - Which is better and why?

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by mindx2, Feb 20, 2016.

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System Shock 1 vs 2 Which is better and why?

  1. System Shock 1

    50.0%
  2. System Shhock 2

    50.0%
  1. Doctor Sbaitso SO, TELL ME ABOUT YOUR PROBLEMS. Patron

    Doctor Sbaitso
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    SS2 was a bit of a departure. Too much focus on horror IMO. I got part way through and thought 'this isn't System Shock and where the fuck is subspace?'. My guess is 1/2 the SS2 crowd never really played the first.
     
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  2. Jaesun Fabulous Moderator Patron

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    The Cyber Space thing in System Shock was fucking terrible. Though I get what they were trying to do. I almost wish they would have given that some better thought and design, though that time was much more better spent on the excellent level design and story and creatures you encounter.
     
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  3. Xathrodox86 Savant

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    SS2 for sure.
     
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  4. Infinitron I post news Patron

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    I thought the SS1 Cyberspace was really cool. An alternate gameplay mode with its own set of rules and tools. I liked how you had to find those tools in the real world.
     
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  5. Naraya Savant

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    My vote goes to SS2, modded.

    I have played SS1 portable but I found it just too clunky and didn't continue past the first level. Did not bother with the recent re-release.
     
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  6. Ash Arcane

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    It's not correct to vote when you have not completed a playthrough of both, or at least played a notable portion. Still, SS2 is just the better game and the votes are cutting it close so your inadequacy as a gamer in failing to get past SS1's clunkyness serves a purpose. The hipster edge-riders claiming SS2 is decline need to be silenced! :D
     
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  7. Naraya Savant

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    ^ Hah, I didn't even notice there was a poll :) So no worries, I didn't cast a vote.
     
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  8. Riskbreaker Arcane Patron

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    LGS fans generally seem to have less than stellar opinion about their sequels. UU2 is considered inferior to UU, Thief 2 to TDP, and well SS 2 to SS. Now, I can understand (and agree with) common complaints about Thief 2 and UU 2, but these claims about SS2's vast inferiority really fucking rub me the wrong way. And this is coming from someone who prefers certain aspects of original game, like its FPS mechanics and (particularly) its writing.

    Eh, I never really understood that hatred for cyberspace either. 'Twas like a Descent clone with TRON-like aesthetics. It looked cool, it was pretty fun to play, and that particular take on hacking went really well with SS1's cyberpunk vibe.
     
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  9. Infinitron I post news Patron

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    Hmmm. I think Thief 2 being considered inferior to TDP is a semi-hipstery thing that has only recently become a kind of conventional wisdom. For years the Thief community was entirely focused on working with Thief 2, and TDP was ignored as obsolete.

    About UU, I'm not sure. Back in the day the Ultima fandom really really liked UU2 for tying in with the main series narrative more than the first game did.
     
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  10. Unkillable Cat Prestigious Gentleman LEST WE FORGET Patron

    Unkillable Cat
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    That's because modding Thief 2 is tons easier than modding Thief 1, though skacky and other modders can give you further details on that. I rate T2 as 'inferior' (though the difference between the two is minor) because its level and monster design becomes repetetive, while Thief 1 has more diversity in its levels and monsters.

    Yes, but compare the Ultima community's opinion on one of "their own" games versus non-Ultima people's opinion on Ultima Underworld. UUW1 only leans slightly towards Ultima, otherwise it's a completely seperate thing - a fact that brought in alot of 'new' players to the Ultima world and franchise, like myself. Likewise I can understand the Ultima community feeling several shades of disappointment over an Ultima game only touching upon the world and philosophy of Britannia, instead of diving right into it. Meanwhile UUW2's tilt towards Ultima 7's storyline and characters is a double-edged sword - though in my opinion what really drags down UUW2 (compared to its prequel) is the lineararity of the game - the main quests must be done in a right order, while you could go about searching for the 8 Talismans of Sir Cabirus in any order you wish.

    On the subject of the number 8, a thought just occurred to me - UUW2 has the Avatar visiting 8 worlds...are those 8 worlds somehow connected to the 8 Virtues, maybe even just thematically?
     
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  11. Riskbreaker Arcane Patron

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    Well, community's focus on Thief 2 was mostly a result of how, prior to NewDark, Thief 2's incarnation of Dark engine was newer and superior to TDP's (I guess someone like Melan or Unkillable Cat can elaborate on this, or correct me if I'm wrong) and thus preferable for FM authors.
    Personally, nowadays I truly prefer some aspects of Thief 1, like its sort of "Film Noir-meets-Arthur Machen's fiction" story and its weird dreamlike atmosphere, I now like its horror themed missions (even tho, while I always liked Old Quarter parts, I initially disliked Bonehoard and only started appreciating it later), I prefer that particular incarnation of the City to TMA's sterile Victorian one etc.

    As for UU2, thing is I never really cared about core Ultima series itself, and furthest I got with mainline Ultima games is playing a couple of hours of Ultima 7 some 5-6 years ago (jumps to cover).


    EDIT: Well, seems like speed and reflexes of felines are definitely worthy of their reputation.:)
     
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  12. Melan Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

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    PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy
    They are both top-tier games, but System Shock 1 is the better one, mainly for the reasons Darth Roxor has mentioned.
    • Its cybernetic gear is a radical take on player equipment that greatly expands your capabilities in a way that has only been attempted again in Deus Ex.
    • It gives you a customisable interface which blurs the line between a game conceit and something your character sees. Small things like being able to identify in-world objects with your cursor. You are half man and half machine!
    • You spend much of the game reducing Shodan's operational range by shutting down her subsystems, the closest you get to the idea of hacking in a mainstream game.
    • More could have been done with cyberspace (it should have been more heavily integrated into doing things), but making it a separate TRON-like minigame is an inspired choice.
    • It has genius little mini-sim elements like the various explosives, the drugs with their side effects, and all the interactable things on board Citadel Station.
    Basically, it takes a game like SS1 to make something like The Hacker's Guide to Sin possible. SS2's RPGification, paradoxically, reduces the sheer range of SS1. It is a better mood piece, and it is also on my personal top list, but SS1 is the greater accomplishment.
     
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  13. tormund Arcane

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    Interface & controls look clunky and overwhelming at start, combined with amount of stuff you can pick up and interact with, but they are surprisingly easy to get used to... I played the game YEARS after SS2, and it took me a few tries until it finally "clicked" with me.
     
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  14. Infinitron I post news Patron

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    Hah, that reminded me. The game was so dedicated to simulation that Shodan's initial master plan to destroy the Earth with a mining laser uses a mechanism that you can activate yourself:

    [​IMG]

    I remember noticing the option to do that and thinking it was totally cool, but I never had the guts to do it. :P
     
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  15. Melan Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

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    Public perception changes, games get reappraised and their forgotten features rediscovered. The 90s was a decade when many people wanted to do the big thing of the time, story. U7: The Serpent Isle, Underworld 2 and Thief 2 are all more story-heavy than the first games in their series, with a stronger human interest component. Now, several years later, we see things differently, and there are more people who like things such as exploration or weirdness or complex [immersive] simulation. We rediscover the appeal of the rougher, slightly more abstract games, and so on.

    The differences are actually minimal, and as someone who had made missions for both games, I wish I didn't listen to the people who told me I had to go Thief 2 because it was so much better. It was common wisdom that was not particularly wise. T2 was slightly (very slightly) more stable, had very slightly less strict limits, and allowed for multiple colour palettes instead of 256 colours (which was a relic of TDP's software mode), but it was not some great leap or anything. Just how the community developed.
     
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  16. tormund Arcane

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    This is another thing I wanted to mention... I never expected that plot twist, and I doubt that I would even if I played first System Shock before that. Could it be that if someone dislikes twist in SS 2, it has more to do with how Levine later became gaming's own Shaylaman but unlike him he was still praised by media for the (recycled) twist in Bioshock and (silly and overwritten) twist in Infinite?

    BTW I love how the results of this poll always stay around 50-50.
     
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  17. DraQ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Let's see:

    SS2:
    • Atmosphere!
    • Any mechanics that is scarcity related (weapon durability in particular)
    • Psi
    • Majority of novel mechanics - research, weapon modification, repair, ability to use hacking to subvert security systems
    • Active security systems (cameras, alarms, turrets)
    • Enemy variety (in terms of mechanics) and creepiness
    • RPG elements where they don't deal with hard limitations (let's face it, a grunt who can't even operate a pistol or AR is bullshit)
    • Music
    • Sound design
    • Envronments consisting of more than discrete blocks and 45 degree angles
    SS1:
    • Graphics
    • Use of lighting
    • Weapons
    • Actual energy beams
    • Combat mechanics, from DT to fiddling around with power sliders
    • Every single thing about grenades
    • Hardware
    • Cybernetic implants being an actual gameplay element
    • Energy management
    • Puzzles
    • Slightly better use of environmental hazards (dat virus grove)
    • Usable cameras
    • Lack of bullshit RPG elements for RPG elements sake (bullshit weapon skills implemented as inability to use pretty basic guns)
    • More exploration and optional stuff
    • Less directed gameplay
    • Possibly existence of cyberspace although gameplay-wise it was shit
    TBH it's hard to pick one over another.
     
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  18. DraQ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    DraQ
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    With mouselook SS1 UI becomes better and more versatile than SS2. It allows you to fluently switch between standard FPS controls and original SS1 cursor for tricky shots and 'nade throwing.
    :love:
    Plus I like fiddly reloads, they suit a survival horror better than neat automated reload button.
     
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  19. DraQ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    DraQ
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    Muh atmosphere, though.
     
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  20. Doctor Sbaitso SO, TELL ME ABOUT YOUR PROBLEMS. Patron

    Doctor Sbaitso
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    Jacking into cyberspace to override security systems, manipulate tech and remove obstacles 'in the real world' felt very tangible and was just plain cool.

    I do think that people's age will influence their vote here. People generally like to play what is not right now, not 5 years ago. If you played SS2 first, you approach SS1 expecting some sort of prequel but they are different enough from each other.

    Horror aspects are a major difference. SS2 was horror in a 'it's dark and loud in here and there are insane monkeys looking to rip me to pieces'... quite overt.

    SS1 was like oh shit a camera just spotted me and I hear a heavy mech activating. I have nowhere to hide! Quite different.
     
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  21. Zetor Arcane

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    Different genres, IMO. Even with the amazing atmosphere, SS1 is still a "smart" FPS where you shoot/explode stuff that gets in your way with a variety of tools; on the other hand, SS2 is pure survival horror where you're half-expected to run / hide, engaging enemies only when necessary. Even then, it's preferable to kill most SS2 enemies in melee due to the massive ammo/weapon restrictions.

    I liked both, but I had to give the nod to SS1 just due to the amazing technical achievement it was at the time (Doom 1 era, remember), plus I found that the gameplay flowed much better... without mouselook, natch.
     
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  22. Zarniwoop Destiny Cleanser Patron

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    And Caitlyn Jenner is wymyn of the year.

    Daily reminder that Star Control 2, another one of the Best Games Ever isn't an RPG either. I know we have these stupid "what is an RPG" circlejerks all the time, but these 2 aren't even borderline cases.

    Mods fixed, or at least improved that.
     
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  23. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

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    yeah i can see that :troll:

    [​IMG]
     
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  24. Infinitron I post news Patron

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    Man how many more years are screenshots of that out-of-date model going to be circulated? voodoo47 you guys should replace that.
     
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  25. skacky Prestigious Gentleman 3D Realms Developer

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    The original midwife model is made from the stuff of nightmares.
     
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