How LucasArts Fell Apart

Discussion in 'Games' started by Alessandro Sanfilippo, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. MarcusP2 Games and Community Reaper

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2004
    star 6
    Oh I certainly agree with that. But you can blend those 'gimmicks' with a storyline. I don't think it makes those things useless on their face- well, Skyrim probably, I find that game yawnworthy. Fallout on the other hand :p
  2. Alessandro Sanfilippo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2013
    star 1
    SW Empire At War is one of my Favorites.
  3. Darth-Lando Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    Unpopular Opinion Alert!!! This is why I've always felt kinda meh about the Battlefront series. It's just Battlefield with a Star Wars skin. Move along.
  4. Alessandro Sanfilippo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2013
    star 1
    I really enjoyed Battlefront. Being able to pilot those tanks. :)
  5. Mirax Terrik Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 11, 2000
    star 5
    SW: GTA sounds fantastic. There's no reason that it couldn't have a decent storyline to go along with the sandbox. It would have been a great way to uncover the seedier parts of Coruscant.
  6. jacktherack Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 2008
    star 4
    It's better then Jet Nebula.
  7. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9
    Except, no. It's like saying, "why, I love steak. And I love icecream. Therefore, steak icecream!"

    At any point in which the second gen of SW authors have tried to shoehorn in content to their stories which is allegorical for something modern-dayish - Traviss with the war on terror, Luceno throwing an Xbox style console into the Falcon novel - it's been jarringly out of context with Star Wars. Star Wars is space fantasy. It should be dealing with epic themes of good and evil and like all space opera, it should be done against a galactic setting. Cloning GTA but changing the Grove St gangs for Nikto pirates doesn't at all fit the Star Wars mold - it simply appeals to a childish aesthetic that likes the pretty colours of the Coruscant neon, the blaster bolts, and the lightsabers.

    I don't know if you played Dark Forces on release, and followed the build-up to Jedi Knight. But that was a tale. Sure, they put their own spin on the Doom engine, but they told a story around it and built levels to feel like they suited that story rather than being a collection of corridors and rooms to house monsters. Again, if you go back and play any of the mid-to-late 90's shooters, the levels are very game-y and not structured to represent a real location. Doom, Rise of the Triad, Wolfenstein all spring to mind. Dark Forces changed it up by making the levels align with the narrative.

    Jedi Knight took it one step further. And back in the day, most people I knew didn't pull out the glow stick until they had to. They kept to their blasters and concussion rifles.

    GTA Star Wars, aside from being a superficial attempt to reconcile two disconsolate passions in a child's mind, starts with a premise. What if we took GTA's sandbox mayhem and added Star Wars to it? Sure, you can craft a tale around it, but you're still making a game to ride GTA's coat-tails. You're not saying, "how do we explore Coruscant's underworld? Hm, after extensive planning, it seems the best way to achieve our goal of telling an underworld story is a sandbox."

    That is why you, where you = the GTA SW crowd, fail.
    SithStarSlayer likes this.
  8. Mirax Terrik Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 11, 2000
    star 5

    Perhaps I was being too specific in saying "GTA" Star Wars but I didn't think get the sense they literally cloned GTA and threw SW elements into it. This would be lazy storytelling and developing, and I've always expected more from LucasArts.

    I still don't understand why you can't have a good sandbox game set on Coruscant. Just because current GTA-style games are BOOM BOOM LOOK AT THE PRETTY EXPLOSIONS doesn't mean it can't feature a decent story. Coruscant, as depicted in the prequels, is full of flashy neon, hovercars, and seedy dives. It is the place where under-the-table deals are made and the fate of galactic civilization hinges on a single assassination going through or, say, a smuggler selling the right data to the right people. As large as the city is, it's improbable that crazy blasterfights and hovercar chases aren't happening constantly. To me, this screams GTA.

    As an example of a good sandbox game, let's take a look at Fallout New Vegas. I'd be lying if I said the ragdoll physics in FONV didn't contribute to the appeal of the game, but it was centered around the story of your character choosing your allegiances and the stories of your companions. It was gritty and bleak and you were constantly faced with choices that were morally ambiguous. Is there a reason why GTA SW couldn't have done the same?

    Dark Forces was a little before my time but I did play DF2 back in '99. It seems like you're saying they took the engine and built something unique to suit the SW Universe out of it. Is there something so limiting about the GTA engine (either Euphoria or RAGE) that would make this impossible?

    Traviss depicting the war on terror in SW is just one case where the parallels to real life were so transparent that it jarred you out of the story. This is a case of sledgehammer writing. This doesn't always have to be true. If you wanted to, (and I am cringing as I type this out), you can compare the Jedi purge to the Holocaust. As I do a cursory google search, it looks like many people already have, and yet the Jedi Purge didn't seem out of place for Star Wars because the events in-universe were plausible enough to lead to that eventuality. Here is a list that someone made that compares other elements of SW to real life: http://www.toptenz.net/top-10-similarities-between-star-wars-and-real-life.php I didn't read through them critically, but it's enough to suggest many things in SW draw from real life.

    I still think 1313 had the potential to be great. We may just disagree on that point.

    Which Luceno book are you talking about with the Xbox? I must have missed that one.


    @jacktherack Jet Nebula is pretty bad too...
  9. SithLordDarthRichie London CR

    Chapter Rep
    Member Since:
    Oct 3, 2003
    star 8
    Given the quality of LucasArts games overall in the last decade, any version of 1313 would have been regarded as great.
  10. THE EVIL CLIFFIE Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 11, 2008
    star 2
    I'd quite like 1313 to be finished up by another company, tbh. It looked like it'd be awesome. Shame the only EA studio that's made a good cover-shooter is working on something else.
  11. Ender Sai Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 9
    Mirax, Fallout was always a gritty post-apocalpytic setting. I still remember taking a punt on the first one when it came out; and then getting to #2. Dear god, between that and Baldur's Gate 2 CRPGs pretty much peaked. But Fallout was already gritty and the mechanism for telling the story - isometric turnbased as opposed to FPS, sorta turn based - wasn't as important. Fallout stories could have been told in a number of ways, so long as they kept the aesthetic of the original.

    Now, if Fallout became more polished and more cartoony and more like something genuinely awful - say, a JRPG like Final Fantasy - then you would rightly argue that the IP had deviated too far from it's core and that having a BoS Paladin with a 3m, stupid looking sword wasn't the right aesthetic.

    Fallout is gritty; Star Wars is proto-typical space opera. Trying to shoehorn it into something it's not is precisely what I said - an amalgam of desperation (in the sales department) and a lack of foresight (but I love steak and I love icecream, so of course I'd love steak-flavoured icecream!).
  12. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    Exactly.
  13. TrandoJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2011
    star 3
    But I can't help be curious what steak ice cream would tast like. I would of loved to see a sandbox style Star Wars game, regardless of what planet it was on or if was just in space it is something I have always wanted to see. There could be a Star Wars game that is still a space opera and a sandbox side by side. Don't know about copying the satirical criminal underworld filled world of GTA though.
    SithStarSlayer likes this.
  14. Chewgumma Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Apr 14, 2009
    star 7

    I agree with this. A game mechanic alone doesn't dictate the tone or content of a game's story. A first person game doesn't have to be a high octane shooter set in the modern day like Call of Duty. It can be a fantasy RPG (Elder Scrolls), a puzzle game (Portal) or a spine chilling horror tale (Amnesia). There is nothing within the actual mechanic of an open world action adventure game that prohibits you from creating a variety of different settings.

    The problem is Lucasarts had demonstrated in more recent efforts that they weren't capable of writing a decent story that fit within the universe. As previous posts in the thread have pointed out. So while on paper there is nothing wrong with an open world Star Wars game, the execution of that idea by an in house Lucasarts development team could well have been atrocious.
  15. Ichor_Razor Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2004
    star 2
    This.
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  16. The2ndQuest Tri-Mod With a Mouth

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2000
    star 10
    The EU has operated with a "the lightside ending is canon" rule (with perhaps a rare stated exception?).

    Even ignoring that, TFU was a multimedia event, so you have canon versions of events in both novel and graphic novel form- so That Bail Thing cannot even be ignored as a gameplay thing, alas.
    SithStarSlayer likes this.
  17. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Wouldn't surprise me if it was on the menu at Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck thus....
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  18. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    At those prices, The Fat Duck better serve GoldSchlager-ice-cream over the finest Filet Mignon ever cut.:p
    Last edited by SithStarSlayer, Oct 8, 2013
  19. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    Well, if anyone was going to do it....
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  20. SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 2003
    star 6
    After reading the menu, I couldn't agree more!:p

    [IMG]
    £195 Per Person
    Please allow 3 1/2 hours for this menu

    RED CABBAGE GAZPACHO
    • Pommery Grain Mustard Ice Cream
    JELLY OF QUAIL, CRAYFISH CREAM
    • Chicken Liver Parfait, Oak Moss and Truffle Toast
    SNAIL PORRIDGE
    • Iberico Bellota Ham, Shaved Fennel
    SALMON POACHED IN A LIQUORICE GEL
    • Artichokes, Vanilla Mayonnaise and Golden Trout Roe
    Last edited by SithStarSlayer, Oct 8, 2013
    TrandoJedi likes this.
  21. LAJ_FETT Tech Admin and Collecting/Games Mod

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    May 25, 2002
    star 8
    I don't think there's anything there I'd pay £195 for..
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  22. Darth-Lando Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    This thread has taken a strange turn.
  23. Jedi Ben Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 19, 1999
    star 6
    £195 for a.... 3.5 hour meal !?:eek:
  24. Mirax Terrik Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 11, 2000
    star 5
    *vomits at the mention of Goldschlager

    There's definitely tasting menus that are worth $200. WD-50 has a wonderful 6-7 course tasting menu for around $150. The food is beautiful, and it's not something you'd do everyday, obviously. :p
  25. Alessandro Sanfilippo Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2013
    star 1
    So do I have sex with the food later?