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BASS vs. Primordia

Discussion in 'Adventure Gaming' started by Taluntain, Apr 10, 2016.

  1. Taluntain Most Frabjous

    Taluntain
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    So, I played Primordia some time ago and absolutely loved it. And then I played Beneath a Steel Sky, finished it today (for the first time, yes). Hooo-boy, what a massive disappointment and talk about overrated. Between the ridiculous random caps in the text, crappy VO with often unmatching text, horrible music, average writing at best for the most part and the (showstopper) bugs I felt like I was doing a speed run through it just so that I could stop playing it. Have I been irrevocably spoiled by Primordia?

    Obviously, given how much of the BASS's concept and nods there are in Primordia the latter likely couldn't have come to life without the former but yikes... Primordia took BASS and made everything about it SO much better.

    MRY has ruined an adventure "classic" for me with a far better one. :incline:
     
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  2. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    RPG Wokedex 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 Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Hasn't anybody told you that comparing Primordia with BASS triggers MRY? PS:T is the inspiration dammit!

    That random caps thing was pretty fun IMO, it made everything funnier and more "memey" somehow. I wonder what the exact reason was for using it. Evoking a comic aesthetic?
     
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  3. Taluntain Most Frabjous

    Taluntain
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    Well, I played a heck of a lot more of Torment than BASS but if you hadn't told me I'd never have guessed that Torment was any kind of inspiration for Primordia (apart from Morte, anyway) whereas with BASS you can see it in so many places it's really dead obvious, from the starting copter crash site to Joey, LINC, city/wastelands, rival cities etc.

    The random caps in the text made me want to gauge my eyes out because it completely broke the reading stream for me and because it was so utterly pointless. Meh...
     
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  4. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    "BARBECUED! I'll never eat KEBAB again!"
     
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  5. Taluntain Most Frabjous

    Taluntain
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    Yea ok, there were a few funny lines there. :lol:
     
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  6. Cassidy Arcane

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    Beneath a Steel Sky remains better, if perhaps shorter in length. The atmosphere manages to convey decay and oppression without brown and grey everywhere, the theme is more fresh than post-apocalyptic, specially back when it was released, the sidekick is more interesting and the puzzles, which are what puts the Game in Adventure Games, are better.
     
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  7. MRY Prestigious Gentleman Wormwood Studios Developer

    MRY
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    BASS was Vic's primary inspiration in terms of the basic concept (going from the desert to the city), the visual design of Metropol with the layers and walkways, and in some of the scenes (as noted by Taluntain). I never found the game particularly interesting, but lots of people like it more than Primordia, so, de gustibus, and all that. I do like how BASS's characters move around in a way that they don't in Primordia. But, to me, the sophistication is roughly on par with, say, "Monkey Torturing: 1 p.m." in A Mind Forever Voyaging. It is possible that BASS subconsciously animated some of my ideas, but that's true of a bazillion other games, too.

    PS:T supplies the basics of the two main characters in Primordia, and Clarity is influenced by Vhailor (though not to the same degree as Morte->Crispin and TNO->Horatio). It also set the standard and, to some degree tone, I wanted to aim for in terms of themes and style.

    Re: Random caps, I'm sure its a comics thing given the whole graphic novel aesthetic.
     
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  8. RuySan Augur

    RuySan
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    Objectively speaking, and without the nostalgia glasses, Primordia is much better. Anyone who says otherwise is an hipster.
     
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  9. made Arcane

    made
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    Early 90s games are best played without the tacked-on speech. It cheapens the experience in almost every case.
    Don't remember much of the writing but Joey certainly had some funny lines and as I mentioned in the Primordia thread was far less annoying than his counterpart in that game.
    Revolution also had that npc-schedule thing going which was unique for adventures of the time and is still at least remarkable in today's world of largely static characters - in any genre's .
    I'd put both games on about the same level all in all.
     
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  10. Jiggy Boobles TESTOSTERONIC As Fuck™ Patron

    Jiggy Boobles
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    What's WRONG with random CAPS everywhere?

    I played it when it came out and loved it. Primordia was good too, but definitely felt familiar. Like BASS with a little Machinarium mixed in.
     
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  11. Infinitron I post news Patron

    Infinitron
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    I really liked the "pseudo-systemic" aspect of BaSS. The consistent way cyberspace worked, putting Joey's circuit board in different robot shells, using various identity cards with different security access levels, stuff like that.

    But it was a different sort of world, inhabited by humans. I think it was going for a Brazil vibe, with lots of off-kilter individuals and everything on the verge of breaking down.
     
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  12. MRY Prestigious Gentleman Wormwood Studios Developer

    MRY
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    I don't see any need to do head-to-head comparisons like this -- both games offer different things. I would be very surprised if BASS didn't outdo Primordia in all sorts of respects: one is the product of three guys located in different continents making their first adventure game in their spare time, the other is the product of a mid-sized, established adventure-game development studio (four designers, six artists, three programmers, plus many ancillary folks). At the same time, Primordia had the benefit of lots of tools (like AGS) that the Revolution guys didn't have, and we had the benefit of additional years of computer games to mine (consciously or otherwise) for ideas. We also have the benefit of lower expectations given where adventure gaming is today vs. 1994 and given that people know WWS was a tiny team.

    Ultimately, while the games have a lot of superficial similarities, I think we were trying to do different things tonally and stylistically (at least from a design/narrative standpoint). It's like when people compare Primordia to Machinarium: in some ways, it's an unavoidable and fair comparison, but it totally breaks down given that other than sharing a basic premise/setting, the two games are about as different as third-person adventure games can get. I made the kind of game I like, so I'm naturally biased toward Primordia, but there are ample reasons to prefer BASS.
     
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  13. ghostdog Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

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    I love them both. BASS handles the humor a bit better, but it does lose steam in the middle, while Primordia managed to keep its high standards to the end, more or less. But Primordia isn't that long a game, while BASS is bigger and has more puzzles. In that department I give them a draw, they both had some good and bad puzzles. They're both above average in the puzzle department tho.

    It's unfair to judge the VO, most of those games were released without VO and it was usually added afterwards (when CDs became a thang) with shit voices provided mostly by the dev team and the company janitor. When you reach the residential sector of the structure in BASS, the humorous stuff don't work quite that well and that's when the game loses its steam, but in the last part it gets better.

    Primordia is definitely my favorite post 2000s adventure game.


    But without BASS there wouldn't be Primordia, so...
    Show Spoiler
     
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  14. MRY Prestigious Gentleman Wormwood Studios Developer

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    This is a factually true statement. But for BASS, Vic wouldn't have started Primordia, and if he hadn't started it, there wouldn't have been a project for me to join. Probably I would've finished Star Captain, though. :/
     
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