Done. It's far shorter than the others — I'm open to lengthening it if required.
Date: 19 Aug 2012 19:19
Number of posts: 40
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Even though I haven't played Max Payne 3, I like this one a great deal. It's hard to make suggestions because any proposed changes could get in the way of the carefully constructed thermodynamics metaphor (especially given my poor grasp of physics).
The only thing I can think of right now is that perhaps a bit more can be added after the last sentence of the penultimate paragraph ("The trick is to ensure the waste heat is not for nothing — that we gain some measure of power or speed or responsiveness to make up for it"). At least for myself, some clarification on the gaming end of this metaphor could be helpful. What would be an example of a way in which a game can make sure its waste heat has some return value?
Changed it. Does that work a bit better? (I admit that specifics are hard to get into, given that the means of acknowledging and working with/around ludonarrative dissonance and necessary game conventions is going to be highly specific to the game in question. So the line is kind of a (hopefully) poetic dodge.)
Pretty well said. As the resident AWTR idiot, you did a good job of explaining these thermodynamic properties to me, though I'm sure what you've explained is only the tip of the iceberg.
In response to the matter on waste heat, what do you propose be done to give it more value, especially in the case of Max Payne 3? How should re-playing failed sequences be handled differently? Are you saying that if someone fails a sequence, they should be rewarded in some way? That they should be forced to start the entire game again? It's this matter I'm really not clear on.
Interesting. I'm tempted to just goad you with the word "polymath" but might get into trouble again.
Max Payne 3 is overflowing with cutscenes. We cannot so much as approach a door without triggering another short movie. We are only in control of Max when there's someone to shoot, or ammunition to be collected from those we have recently shot.
We play Max Payne's addiction. Not to booze or pills, but to violence.
These two statements encapsulate the shooter genre in general methinks, and are what differentiate them from the RPG systems of consequences outside combat. This is also what created the fundamental divide between ME3 and its earlier iterations. ME3 moved towards this gameplay style, stripping back many of the elements that would have made it something else.
Not sure if that has relevance to the thermodynamics metaphor, which could, if I understand it, apply beyond shooters where additional potential states exist outside of combat.
Argh, that 0.X section is driving me mad (well, the last couple sentences). Halp!
Here's the analogy I'm not sure I can directly fit in, but seems appropriate: shooters are like cars. I grew up with them, I like them, I'm good with them, and the high-performance ones have a beauty and thrill which is hard to find anywhere else. But even I will admit there's too many of them, and the IC engine is not what we should be building our transportation infrastructure on anymore.
Pure (story-less) shooters are race cars — they don't need to make any compromises for street use, but they won't take you anywhere new. Good story-driven shooters are street-legal sports cars1, which you can take to the track, but also take on a road trip (not with a lot of luggage, though). Shooter mechanics shoehorned into an RPG can, if done very well, be a sport-luxury sedan — but more often it ends up as a minivan2 instead.