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Interview New Gothic 3 interview with Kai Rosencrantz

Discussion in 'News & Content Feedback' started by suibhne, Jan 11, 2007.

  1. suibhne Erudite

    suibhne
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    Tags: Gothic III; Piranha Bytes

    German fansite <a href="http://www.worldofgothic.de/">World of Gothic</a> recently scored a Christmastime interview with Piranha Bytes developer KaiRo (also the composer of Gothic 3's award-winning soundtrack). Deutschophiliacs can find the original German interview <a href="http://www.worldofgothic.de/gothic3/index.php?go=interview15">here</a>. Narrow-minded English speakers were originally out of luck, but JoWood forum mod Glockenbeat came to the rescue this afternoon by posting <a href="http://forum.jowood.de/showthread.php?t=136609">his own translation of the interview</a>.
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    <br>
    To whet your appetite:
    <br>
    <blockquote>Gothic 3's technology is based on a simple idea but which is part in every section of development: The player should have a maximum of freedom and the world should traceably react dynamically on every action he takes. ...Special reactions on particular decisions still exist, but the majority of the consequences is calculated through algorithms in the engine instead of being alleged by us. ...We still stand by the decision to take this choice of design because we find it to be auspicious and the future of RPGs. But we still have to put up with the reproach that Gothic 3 has lost its soul, since we didn't achieve to combine freedom with the soul of the series - the narrative depth. Now it's our turn to implement both in one game, or at least to find the golden mean.</blockquote>KaiRo also discusses further patches, a possible release of the editor, and future PB projects (including vague but positive mumblings about a G3 expansion).
    <br>
    Spotted at: <A HREF="http://forum.jowood.de/showthread.php?t=136609">JoWood forums</A>
     
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  2. Barghest Augur Patron

    Barghest
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    '...Gothic 3 has lost its soul...'

    So horribly true.
     
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  3. Morgoth Arcane Patron

    Morgoth
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    Why needing a soul when you have great graphix???
     
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  4. Jung Liturgist

    Jung
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    Wow, what an honest and interesting interview. It's not often that you get the real reasons for a game's failings.
     
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  5. Kraszu Prophet

    Kraszu
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    Well that is gutsy move I didn't play G3 previous Gothic games seems better to me, but sometimes you have to experiment and loose to gain in long run. I hope that they will put good use of they experience and make next game great, I think that there are good odds on that.
     
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  6. suibhne Erudite

    suibhne
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    It's not a long interview, but I think Kai does a great job of answering each question in detail and being honest about the game's shortcomings. I'm especially interested in hearing more about their design decisions... Maybe we can score a Codex interview with him. :wink:

    Aside from the combat system, there's nothing wrong with G3 that can't be fixed by an add-on (like NotR) - and not just fixed, but turned into a real masterpiece. The more I play it (currently at around 40-50 hours), the more I think it actually makes sense to compare G3 and Oblivion simply because they both tackle the same problem: creating a massive, freeform gameworld that honors the player's freedom while still preserving meaning. Oblivion fails by giving no respect at all to player choices (even within the context of individual quests, where it's by far easiest to do so); in a sense, G3 commits the converse error by focusing heavily on meaningful player freedom but failing to provide the possibility of a compelling overarching meaning. (It's there, but it's really tough to find unless you're a Gothic veteran - and even then I find it frustratingly threadbare.)

    I'm looking forward to finishing the game with my current character, then shelving it for awhile and pulling it out again for the add-on. :D
     
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  7. denizsi Arcane

    denizsi
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    A lesson to those who think covering the dirt under the carpet and giving hyped up statements of retardation is a better public relations strategy.

    Or is it not?
     
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  8. Volourn Pretty Princess Pretty Princess Glory to Ukraine

    Volourn
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    "Wow, what an honest and interesting interview. It's not often that you get the real reasons for a game's failings."

    Honest? All I read was excuses, and bullcrap for how the game is. Interesting, yes, in his self and fan ass kisisng though. I'll give him that.

    Thankfully, he helped make an ok game so I'll forgive him. Not taht he cares either way. L0LLERZ
     
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  9. HardCode Erudite

    HardCode
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    Another Armchair Quarterback voicing his "opinion"!!! Moron.

    I think the interview was very good in that the developer didn't state that the game is "epic, revolutionary, 'Trust Us!!!111one!1'". Rather, he explained in plain terms what it is they tried to achieve, what they accomplished, and what they currently failed at. It's nice to hear the truth sometimes, even if we wished it wasn't always so. I think PB is on the right track.
     
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  10. aweigh Arcane

    aweigh
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    I was just thinkin, "wow TWD really has Volleyball's style down pat".
     
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  11. sqeecoo Arcane

    sqeecoo
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    Perfectly put! I was very sceptical hearing reviews and opinions on G3 and refrained from buying it, but after such a refreshingly honest interview I feel compelled to give it a try, at least to support thier next project. When I get a computer that can actually run the game, of course.
     
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  12. aries202 Erudite

    aries202
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    I don't really know if such a game as PB wants to make can be achieved. I fully understand Gothic's devs. vision and choice behind making G3 so the player has freedom & and can do whatever he or she likes when he or she chooses to do so.

    Personally, to me, it seems like PB is trying to compete with Bethsoft (& other rpg devs./publishers) by making the game's engine (if that is the correct term?) react exactly or nearly exactly the same as Oblivion's engine does. The soul of the Gothic series that has gone away by this choice is, imo, the deep storylling, the depht in the characters and the deep interaction between the characters, which (maybe) is what Kai meant by
    'narrative depht.'

    To me, at least, you can't have full freedom for the player without this taking its toll at the narrative depth of the story. As well as you can't have a game in which there is narrative depth and not have this choice affect the freeform play of the character. (avatar etc. ) in the game.

    Actually, I strongly disagree with Kai about the freeform gameplay being the future of (singleplayer) rpgs. If rpg players want freeform gameplay, the will play an MMOrpg instead, imo. Bioware has had succes in the past, the present and will also have in the future, imo, by letting story-telling be the focus in their games.

    My best guess is that the Gothic series got so popular because it was something people have never seen before, the ideas were innovative etc. etc. Making Gothic more of a mainstreet product is, imo, a shame.
    I don't know if I would say that this it was has happened to G3.

    Kai talks about 'the overarchhing meaning'. It was (and still is) my understanding that G3 provides the player, the pc and the NPCs following, the pc, with an opportunity to find this meaning for themselves.
    This is, imo, one of the strongpoints in G3 (while I find the meaning in Oblivion, or the 'overarching' a bit dull).
    In Gothic 3 you are dumped onto a shore, and after this, it is just 'hey man, you're on your own'.

    Actually, I kind of liked this idea:

    You are left to your own devices, you have to find or
    figure a meaning out for yourself as wll as shape your own destirny in this world. To do this, you can either side with humans or their enemies. To find out what went on during the time you were away, you would need to talk to people. And kind of figure out the plot (in the game) for yourself. To me, this is so much better than Oblivion's bland way of doing things.

    As a closing note, let me just state that I too find it refreshing that dev. is this honest about a game.
     
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  13. denizsi Arcane

    denizsi
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    People who aren't complete dumbasses are capable of saying "we screwed because of this and that" instead of "ITS B-COZ IMA DUMBASS LOLOLOLLIPOP!"
     
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  14. suibhne Erudite

    suibhne
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    You may be referring to something else, but part of the contrast between the two games is that, even tho they both feature huge worlds with hundreds of NPCs and quests, Oblivion NPCs don't really react to you at all. You get a few epithets (like Champion of the Arena or Savior of Kvatch or w/e) and that's it; many guild members don't even recognize you as their leader, and it's still possible to become the leader of competing guilds and lead guilds where you actually have no qualifications whatsoever. Quests don't generally have alternative endings, and almost never have mutually exclusive endings with a permanent effect on the gameworld that's actually recognized by other NPCs. G3 is night-and-day different in terms of gameworld impacts which can be recognized by the NPCs.

    I agree that the character interaction is less involved this time around, but the Gothics have never had great storytelling. My big disappointment with both G1 and G2 (no matter how much I loved them) is that they boil down to an entirely linear slugfest near the end - G1 worse than G2, sure, but both pretty damn constrained. The "soul" of Gothic imo is the ability to create your own narrative, threading your way through contradictory quests and various factions all demanding mutually exclusive contributions, and it's hard to argue that G3 isn't far more flexible than both of its predecessors in this regard.

    Agreed, but I think the "golden mean" mentioned by Kai is possible. G3 would be a much better game for me if important characters had more to say (i.e., if the actual backstory weren't buried so deeply) and if the factions had some overall direction (i.e., if the Rebels or other factions actually had a set of long-term goals which emerged over time, not just "liberate one town and then another"; this is in there, but it's not nearly as effective as it could be). The freeform gameworld and reactive NPCs wouldn't have to change a bit for this to be true.

    Overall, part of the reason I'm enjoying G3 is that its underlying design is more interesting to me than that of any other RPG in the past few years. It doesn't get it right, but with a bit more work it could.
     
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  15. sabishii Arbiter

    sabishii
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    Totally wrong. Oblivion has the opposite of the nonlinear system PB tried to implement.

    Just look at this quote:
    This is the first weakness of a nonlinear system that Kai talked about, that it makes it much harder to "force" the player to experience the "hand-made content" written by the developer. Now, look at Oblivion. Where in G3, "every character has to be disposable instead of being immortal for some reason", Oblivion is the EXACT opposite. Whenever the story demands it, the NPC is immortal. Where G3 shows these difficulties that arise from freedom and nonlinearity, Oblivion doesn't because it DOESN'T try for freedom and nonlinearity.
     
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  16. Claw Erudite Patron

    Claw
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    There is just one point that irritates me is the notion that a "red line" (without the limitation to the beginning in he original text btw) supposedly isn't possible without indispensable characters.

    I mean, Fallout had only one unkillable character that I know of, and I can't help feelig the Overseer wasn't absolutely indispensable, yet in my opinion there was a pretty strong red line, maybe with a little gap in the Hub area.
    Same for Fallout 2 (unkillable characters?) - It was pretty obvious where to go for the longest time.

    I think they're making excuses here. A main complaint is the lack of fleshed out characters - Maybe the excuse is meant to be "They are all disposeable, so we feared to waste effort on a character that may get killed early?"
     
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  17. Nedrah Erudite

    Nedrah
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    Well for me the Gothics were always 50% about squishing every bit of personality out of the NPCs, then maybe 30% questing and 20% exploration/random fighting. By taking away most of the personality I'm basically left with a half Gothic. I still like pb's style and sincerely hope they get around to do Gothic 4: "The way G3 should have been"
     
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  18. Hazelnut Erudite

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    "We want to replace time pressure with quality pressure and hope that this is to your interest."

    That's good to hear. Makes me feel positive about the patches and expansion. I'm really enjoying G3, even with the massive amount of frustrations it can bring. Admittedly many of them are caused by running it on a XP2200+ with 1Gb Ram & 128Mb 6600GT machine, so I'm strictly low details and even then it can get down to 2-3fps at times. With the view distance all the way down I often miss things and walk straight by. I still can't find those damn slaves near Silden! ;) I'm looking forward to playing the game again in the future when I eventually get a better PC and it's been patched and polished (and maybe expanded)

    Nice honest interview with Kai IMO.

    Volourn - shut the fuck up! You're getting really boring with your incessant idiocy, it's lost all it's humor recently, and you apear to have no appreciation of the effort that something like this takes to make, probably because you've never made anything significant yourself.
     
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  19. Sir_Brennus Scholar

    Sir_Brennus
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    Amen, Brother Amen! Haven't read such an intelligent post in a very loooong time. You should express you point to HumanShied though, cause he can't grasp the concept.
     
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  20. FrancoTAU Cipher

    FrancoTAU
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    Why wait to the forth installment? From what I hear, the Gothic 2 Expansion really improved the game in everyway so hopefully they go the same route with G3's expansion.
     
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  21. Volourn Pretty Princess Pretty Princess Glory to Ukraine

    Volourn
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    "Volourn - shut the fuck up!"

    Gotta love fanboys.

    P.S. I like G3 myself; but this incessant push to palce it on a pedestal is a joke. Absolutely pathetic.
     
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  22. Kraszu Prophet

    Kraszu
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    Haw about answering to post that disagree whit him instead of that useless crap that bring nothing new that you had posted?
     
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  23. Hazelnut Erudite

    Hazelnut
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    Jeezus - there's no push to put anything on a pedestal you idiot, and I'm not a Gothic fanboy by any stretch - I just like the game like you do.

    If you recall your response, which you probably don't, your comment was about the honesty of Kai's answers in the interview. Excuses and bullshit is what you wrote and it annoys me because that would apply, at least in part, to most interviews of this kind in the game industry. However I don't think it does here, seems that PB are honest, hardworking and intelligent game developers who have produced games with a lot of aspects that Codex denizens appreciate. We should call people on bullshit, and praise honest, thoughtful design regardless of whether it's to our personal taste or a perfect end result. A lot of people here are trying to do that with G3, yet you think it's just fanboyism - we don't have to slate everything on this site, we can like things surely? Otherwise all the bitter vitriol and whining about the state of RPG's is so much fucking horseshit... :roll:

    Anyway back to my point which seems to have passed you by, accusing people who appear to be straightforward and honest of excuses and bullshit is simply being a cunt for the sake of it regardless of reality. So as I said, unless you get some of your old humor back, shut the fuck up!
     
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  24. Volourn Pretty Princess Pretty Princess Glory to Ukraine

    Volourn
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    No. I never had humour. What a maroon. That interview isn't honest. Hell, I doubt the Gothic3 devs are even being honest with soemthings. Probably more delusional than anything.

    R00fles!


    P.S. Until you stop acting like one, I'll continue to point to you as you are - a stupid, brainwashed fanboy.
     
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  25. Nedrah Erudite

    Nedrah
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    G3's problems lie deeply rooted within the system, I don't see how an expansion could do for G3 what NOTR did for G2, a game that had everything in place and just needed some refinement. I'd love to see you proven right, though - although I'm also in the "waiting for a better rig so I can really enjoy what the game does best" boat.
     
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