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Dice
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« Reply #11040 on: October 21, 2013, 01:21:00 PM »

Had a successful date tonight. Only been dating her for a little over a week. It has been a good week.

Congrats, sir!  Woo her well!

I'm getting a lot of grades between 70-80 this semester....  and I'm ok with that speaking I'm filled with five classes and I've just really stopped giving a fuck about getting 90s
(butt fuuuucck...I have ONE chapter tonight that's 60-freaking pages on top of three other readings.... Plus I gotta hang out with family that came down for brothers wedding so there goes the week drowned in books just to catch up on all that).

Oh yeah, my brother got married!
Good for him!  They were practically husband and wife already, so we just celebrated it basically.
It was a good time; but the big day followed up midterms where I had less than 16 hours of sleep the last four days.  My eyes were burning; but I was still able to smile the whole day!
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Annubis
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« Reply #11041 on: October 22, 2013, 04:15:20 PM »

I used to not like Jim Sterling much... but then in the last year he has been on the ball hitting key issues with perfect accuracy each and every time.

This week he's wording perfectly exactly why I completely avoid romancing anything in a Bioware game.

So again, I have to say: THIS! FUCKING THIS!
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/jimquisition/8300-Sexual-Failing

(Also, that part about the SR4 satire makes me want to play it even more)
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« Reply #11042 on: October 22, 2013, 08:06:09 PM »

I used to not like Jim Sterling much... but then in the last year he has been on the ball hitting key issues with perfect accuracy each and every time.

This week he's wording perfectly exactly why I completely avoid romancing anything in a Bioware game.

So again, I have to say: THIS! FUCKING THIS!
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/jimquisition/8300-Sexual-Failing

(Also, that part about the SR4 satire makes me want to play it even more)

I think the real problem with sex in Bioware games isn't so much the sex scenes themselves (though they can be awkward as heck...) or even the fact the sex comes as a culmination of a fairly simplistic romantic conquest.  See, Jim correctly points out how shallow the romancing process is, yet he seems to mainly focus his criticism on the overall structure.  But even if you kept the structure exactly the same but had better writing so the lines during the romancing process weren't so abrupt and wooden then maybe it wouldn't feel so shallow.  Ideally you should be able to enjoy the process of getting closer to another character.  I don't think anyone who enjoys these aspect of games is really in it for a couple minutes of awkwardly animated and largely obfuscated sex scenes at the end.  It should be more about the journey than the destination.

The other major problem is how isolated these romance options usually feel from the rest of the game.  Outside of the romance subplot itself nothing really changes.  This is one area where visual novel type games that focus specifically on romance often do much better.  As romance is the whole point, the story can branch off in entirely different directions based on your decisions in that regard.  In Bioware games the romance is usually only a sideshow and they don't want to take the time to significantly change dialogue in the core game depending on romantic developments.  From a manpower standpoint I understand that, but sometimes I think they spend far too much effort on giving options (everyone is bisexual!) and not enough time on the quality of those options...I would rather see a game where there were only one or two viable romantic possibilities that were fully explored with actual, meaningful character development than doing it with everyone just to tick some checkboxes.

Also, "affection" should never be measured as a single parameter.  That inevitably leads to shallow behavior.  The very idea that you could do something that a character hates but then "make up for it" by buying them a bunch of gifts or something is flawed.  This is fundamentally the same problem I have with morality systems that try to put good an evil on a single line.  It leads to situations in games where you can slaughter hundreds of innocent civilians and then donate a bunch of money to the local orphanage or something and still be considered "good".  Sorry, but the latter should never make up for the former, regardless of how much you donate.  And although less extreme, the same sort of reasoning really should apply to a lot of decisions made in the romance process as well.
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Dice
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« Reply #11043 on: October 22, 2013, 08:43:19 PM »

I used to not like Jim Sterling much... but then in the last year he has been on the ball hitting key issues with perfect accuracy each and every time.

This week he's wording perfectly exactly why I completely avoid romancing anything in a Bioware game.

So again, I have to say: THIS! FUCKING THIS!
http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/jimquisition/8300-Sexual-Failing

(Also, that part about the SR4 satire makes me want to play it even more)

I think the real problem with sex in Bioware games isn't so much the sex scenes themselves (though they can be awkward as heck...) or even the fact the sex comes as a culmination of a fairly simplistic romantic conquest.  See, Jim correctly points out how shallow the romancing process is, yet he seems to mainly focus his criticism on the overall structure.  But even if you kept the structure exactly the same but had better writing so the lines during the romancing process weren't so abrupt and wooden then maybe it wouldn't feel so shallow.  Ideally you should be able to enjoy the process of getting closer to another character.  I don't think anyone who enjoys these aspect of games is really in it for a couple minutes of awkwardly animated and largely obfuscated sex scenes at the end.  It should be more about the journey than the destination.

The other major problem is how isolated these romance options usually feel from the rest of the game.  Outside of the romance subplot itself nothing really changes.  This is one area where visual novel type games that focus specifically on romance often do much better.  As romance is the whole point, the story can branch off in entirely different directions based on your decisions in that regard.  In Bioware games the romance is usually only a sideshow and they don't want to take the time to significantly change dialogue in the core game depending on romantic developments.  From a manpower standpoint I understand that, but sometimes I think they spend far too much effort on giving options (everyone is bisexual!) and not enough time on the quality of those options...I would rather see a game where there were only one or two viable romantic possibilities that were fully explored with actual, meaningful character development than doing it with everyone just to tick some checkboxes.

Also, "affection" should never be measured as a single parameter.  That inevitably leads to shallow behavior.  The very idea that you could do something that a character hates but then "make up for it" by buying them a bunch of gifts or something is flawed.  This is fundamentally the same problem I have with morality systems that try to put good an evil on a single line.  It leads to situations in games where you can slaughter hundreds of innocent civilians and then donate a bunch of money to the local orphanage or something and still be considered "good".  Sorry, but the latter should never make up for the former, regardless of how much you donate.  And although less extreme, the same sort of reasoning really should apply to a lot of decisions made in the romance process as well.

First, I loved that video for being quotable beyond belief.  I loved it.  I love the way Brits talk sometimes.

Second, I agree with all that; but the obvious limit is time and money to implement all that jazz, to make romance a big process, to have it tie into the game better, change scenarios, and maybe even impact the game (then you're looking at just *numerous* changes in script and new scenes).  I definitely think they can make it a more involving process, but I don't know to what extent game dev's will go for it... But I'm sure you know that as well.

I definitely do hate how romance in games is generally a "step by step process".  You meet, say the right thing, give gifts, get laid.  It does simplify the whole thing and cheapen the relationship and the character in the meanwhile.  I kind of like the Star Ocean games all of a sudden for their approach.  They showed NO physical stuff except maybe in the ending.  It feels a bit more realistic in that you use the journey to build the relationship, then the epilogue rewards you for it with an appropriate ending (SO2 has three variations of the Claude/Rena relationship: One in which they're friends, another they're married[?], and the third states that Rena's expecting his child [weird visual in my head ew ew ewewewew]).

Frankly, I don't want sex in my games.  Not because I have moralistic values against it or I think it's "sacred" or any of that business... but because it's just fucking weird and awkward when two wooden puppet models try and "do it" (mo-cap is still kind of "young technology" I think; so 3D models either clip or float against one another, lacking that passionate bonding real sex or even just hugging/kissing has; and games like Heavy Rain and Mass Effect are still unrealistic 3D imitating real-life -- so to me, it just kinda hits an uncanny valley of doing something intimate but looking too phony to pull it off). 
And also, like Jim said, these relationships just feel far from realistic, it's more strictly goal oriented of getting weird NPC to bond with you in the most scripted way possible.

PS: I still giggle a bit about "friend zones"; they're sad and funny at the same time; but I really hope people aren't that naive to think romance in the same way games demonstrate as Jim implies.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 08:54:06 PM by Dice » Logged

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« Reply #11044 on: October 22, 2013, 08:54:57 PM »

This is a really weird video, it starts talking about flaws in video game relationships, then segues into bizarre rhetoric. It's like one of those feminist Youtube videos dressed as a video game critique. It seems that the guy is angry at games about something the designers didn't have any intention of doing. It strikes me as akin to all the posts regarding DA2 and ME3 accusing BioWare of "shoving the gay agenda down our throats." Besides, unless you think of time as a nebulous concept, aren't all relationships a linear, step-by-step process? You meet someone, get to know them, then become friends/significant others. It's just unfortunate that games haven't been able to reproduce that organically yet.

Also, I still find it hilarious (and a bit aggravating) how people keep misappropriating the friend zone from its original meaning. Just like how people misappropriate fedoras now, I guess. I see some comments down there of people ripping some guy a new one because he had a fedora on his profile pic? Seriously ... way to go, internet.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 08:56:59 PM by Ashton » Logged

Dice
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« Reply #11045 on: October 22, 2013, 09:01:00 PM »

This is a really weird video, it starts talking about flaws in video game relationships, then segues into bizarre rhetoric. It's like one of those feminist Youtube videos dressed as a video game critique. It seems that the guy is angry at games about something the designers didn't have any intention of doing. It strikes me as akin to all the posts regarding DA2 and ME3 accusing BioWare of "shoving the gay agenda down our throats." Besides, unless you think of time as a nebulous concept, aren't all relationships a linear, step-by-step process? You meet someone, get to know them, then become friends/significant others. It's just unfortunate that games haven't been able to reproduce that organically yet.

Also, I still find it hilarious how people keep misappropriating the friend zone from its original meaning. Just like how people misappropriate fedoras now, I guess. I see some comments down there of people ripping some guy a new one because he had a fedora on his profile pic? Seriously ...

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« Reply #11046 on: October 22, 2013, 09:02:04 PM »

Oh great, now I have to deal with Tumblr idiocy here, too.
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« Reply #11047 on: October 22, 2013, 09:02:52 PM »

Besides, unless you think of time as a nebulous concept, aren't all relationships a linear, step-by-step process?

I'll use what someone else said as a counter argument.
BG2 is a great example of why you shouldn't use that linearity (well, at least not on everyone)
When you romance Jaheira, if you follow the game events and have sex with her before she's had the time needed to go through her issues, she will start crying remembering her dead husband and will either break the relationship removing every flag or completely leave the party.

And to me, this is great. This is a moment that makes you go:
"Well fuck... why did I just think with my dick only and not my brain?" and
"She's been complaining about her dead husband for 30 real life hours and my best idea was to fuck her... I'm a retard."
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 09:05:49 PM by Annubis » Logged
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« Reply #11048 on: October 22, 2013, 09:03:57 PM »

That's still a linear progression though, it just so happens that that linearity splits into multiple paths.
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Annubis
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« Reply #11049 on: October 22, 2013, 09:06:18 PM »

... yes, and a circle is a line bent on itself...

EDIT: for an actual reason since I don't really like trolling. You are being a jerk here. You know damn well that yes everything follows a guided route because nobody can yet program a real existence. If you look at at tree and think the trunk is being linear, that's a cop out.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 09:08:12 PM by Annubis » Logged
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« Reply #11050 on: October 22, 2013, 09:07:22 PM »

Explain to me, then, how relationships aren't linear when you really analyze them, instead of offering nothing but condescending Tumblr gifs and passive aggressive asides.

If you want to trace something from a beginning to an endpoint, then it's linear, because guess what? Our sense of time is linear. A tree can have many branches but going from the tip of one root to the tip of another branch is still just a single line. I don't see how I'm the one being a jerk when your first reaction is using veiled insults.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 09:12:43 PM by Ashton » Logged

Annubis
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« Reply #11051 on: October 22, 2013, 09:09:00 PM »

Some people are together and never had sex... for many many years.

Some people aren't even capable of sex.
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« Reply #11052 on: October 22, 2013, 09:10:52 PM »

And those people's relationships... guess what, still are linear! I'm not talking about sex. I'm talking about relationships. This extends to any and all human interaction because we don't perceive all points of our lives simultaneously.
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« Reply #11053 on: October 22, 2013, 09:12:24 PM »

So according to you, what is not linear?
You have taken the theory of multiple world and said it's multiple linearity... I can't fathom what you'd say isn't.
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Dice
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« Reply #11054 on: October 22, 2013, 09:12:39 PM »

I really hope guys don't think the way Jim asserts they do (his insert coins metaphor).

Quote
aren't all relationships a linear, step-by-step process

I think that's part of the point of the friend zone is when that's a no-go to advance to more "sexual thangs".  Games often make it so you can hook up with everyone without too much effort (except for the goddamn red head in Harvest Moon on GC).  There's too many isolating factors for me to certainly call it a step-by-step process in anything other than a macro-examination and the very basic demonstration of how it goes (or all guys could follow said instructions to sexual/intimate bliss) .  Unfortunately, games take the simplest version of this more "long term" relationship line and condense it to Meeting > Befriending > Romancing > Fucking is 4 steps (ie; 4 scenes) and have the context merely as padding to ensure it's not completely out of their ass ("my mom died and it traumatized me!!" "There, there").

There's way too many nuances, bumps, and troubles in a relationship before you earn your happily ever after (hell, Disney gets that, and even Persona games have characters get mad at you when you keep bailing on them; people move away, get mad at you, might hope off to university, some even rearrange their lives to be with the person they love).   Furthermore game writers don't really give time for chemistry and force a lot of it.

I LOVE how you had to mention feminism and fedoras.  You're damn fine at segueing yourself.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2013, 09:19:14 PM by Dice » Logged

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