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Agents of Mayhem gameplay details!

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by [V] IdolNinja, Jun 10, 2016.

  1. I just ran into this video, which I think is interesting to consider.

    I feel that games recently have pushed predictability and letting the player cheat too far (Far Cry and Batman AI gets very repetitive and unchallenging, and most shooters are struggling to compare their AI to a much older game), letting the player overcome too much without providing interesting dynamics, adaptability and interactions.

    The other points, AI interacting with the games systems, having their own goals, and for this type of game, tactical aggressive enemies (which again, almost all shooters have been palling in), are points that I think would be very important to build on, and create more nuanced behaviors within. Some predictability and player ability freedom is probably necessary, but too many games let players cheat behaviors far too much. The first three game examples he gave are probably good inspiration.

    I do hope the enemies quickly dodge attacks (because spending too long in a twirl to one side can be a drawback, since the player can reaim before they start damaging you, so hopefully they can dodge and strike quickly), use abilities quicker (I'm worried about how slow the grenade and sniper abilities are, on PC at least, that seems too easily counter-able) and have good capabilities of parkouring and keeping up with the player if they flee (a big problem with previous Volition games).

    It's obviously far too late in development for any huge changes (but I really like most of what I've seen), so I will just hope that it's good when I get my hands on it. And that this is generally considered by developers in the future.

    I also still think all of these behaviors should be considered and built upon for friendly AI (which often suffer in most games). Intelligent friendly and civilian AI can really make the world interesting.

    In all the recent footage, the only overt problems I have noticed is in pedestrian animations and path-finding, they sometimes don't look fluid, jitter or glitch about, clip into things, and generally don't seem to animate as smoothly as the enemy and player character. I am also still worried about NPC open world density.

    I hope those issues are fixed, and that there is a good diversity of action nodes (pedestrian open world behaviours and interactions) that occur, so that the city doesn't feel lifeless.

    I feel like I type way too much for something that people might not even read :/ but if so, hopefully this is good feedback.

    The game overall seems quite polished, I didn't notice many glitches other than in pedestrians (and sometimes they popped in the draw distance weirdly).
  2. Admixon

    Admixon Modding patch tester

    So Hollywood drives Honda.
    Fan of Saints likes this.
  3. Quantum

    Quantum Modding patch tester

    I also think that friendly AI is extremely important (and frequently neglected) in a game for making the world seem alive. And some older games have better AI than some newer ones.

    Some games which I think have really good friendly AI include SR1 and SR2 and Mafia II. And it's not their ability to interact in battle situations, but their ability to interact with each other in real-world every day situations that makes the city seem real. For example, in SR1, bots on the street look at you and talk to you. In SR2, there are groups of bots doing things like Tai Chi, cheerleading, a barbershop quartet, and lovers sitting together and talking. Somebody gets hurt and an ambulance drives up, someone gets out, administers first aid. In Mafia II, people periodically meet each other on the street, and stop and have conversations. All the little interactions like this make a world seem real. I've noticed in SR3 and especially 4, bots don't interact as much unless they are fighting each other.

    And character movement is something that doesn't seem to have made a great deal of progress in the last 10 years. I see games that are 10 years old that have more realistic bot movement than recent games, which actually surprises me a lot. We're still playing motion-capture clips instead of modelling the human body mechanics in a lot of cases. GTA 5 is one of the few games that seems to have made strides in modelling body mechanics (for example, how characters climb stairs a step at a time, rather than simply traversing a ramp).
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2017
    Fan of Saints likes this.
  4. Completely agree, I really hope those things are in this game, but I am worried from what I've seen so far in regards to pedestrians. I hope they are going to surprise us and those activities and types will be here, but I haven't seen too much of it.

    "AI interacting with the games systems" Is something I really like, and hope to see more of, heck even enemies in non combat situations could have some ambient activity, and interact with pedestrians. Forcing them away from a checkpoint, running security checks, so on and so forth. Heck, the police trying to protect pedestrians and instructing them away from battlegrounds would be awesome! Plus, if there isn't ambulances in this game I will be quite surprised.

    The only glitches and problems I am noticing in the streams (which overall look great) are the pedestrians. The transitions between animations (especially turning directions) are quite poor, they sometimes have body parts clip into walls as they walk near them or with each other like during the latest Joule stream, where a huge bunch were buggily in the same spot, they all use similar animations when running away from combat, their path-finding during combat is often strange, they run in circles near a wall sometimes, and I am worried with the lack of model variety for pedestrians too, heck even in the trailer with Pierce all the characters near his dance have the same model (with cosmetic differences, I do appreciate that).

    Their ragdolls seem worse than the enemies, I saw one characters leg contort weirdly and clip, they vibrate sometimes going up and down stairs, the way they pop into the draw distance and drastically transition to an animation looks weird, generally almost all the glitches and animation oddities I see involve them. The enemies at most sometimes ran to a dead end and circled out, or seemed a bit overly still while the player was attacking them, pedestrians seem to have the brunt of technical weirdness.

    GTA 5 had a problem where whilst the ambient activities pedestrians had were diverse and quite great, the actual interactions they have if you interfere as a player were extremely poor. Weird dialogue overlaps, overly hostile behavior, repetitive animation, poor ragdolls and bodily animations, bad interactions with other pedestrians and with traffic, not returning to an activity they were doing, and instead path-finding away weirdly, not reacting realistically for their profession, it did a good job with the look and feel, but struggled with the systems and interactions.

    I hope these issues are somewhat lesser at release, and that I can be surprised, I really like everything else though, so these are my only major criticisms, pedestrian model diversity, animation quality, AI quality, clipping issues and ragdolls, ambient activities, and their interactions with the games world and systems.

    Everything else looks really promising.
    Quantum likes this.
  5. Admixon

    Admixon Modding patch tester

  6. Huh, new ad campaign with DeviantArt, interesting idea, I really love art, I do wonder how much attention these sponsorship's get, I'm not overly familiar with the traffic and size of the website.

    Is the marketing plan a late push? I recall hearing that quite a lot of people who buy games don't know about them until they come out/near release (feel free to verify/correct me on that), so if that is the case, that seems like a good business move. I'm not sure how you make people aware of your trailers/streams online as a corporation, (Saints Row's trailers got a lot of traffic and views if I recall? As do most large games) so hopefully more people see the game rather than the 1 percent of us, I can guarantee most people don't know the game exists.

    I am still worried by the hostility the game has been receiving, which is infuriating because I can't find anyone giving constructive criticism, things like "haha Battleborn" or "generic"(???) or "I thought this was multiplayer" or "It looks like a Saints Row reskin" (which is the most egregious to me, apparently people don't have eyes and notice the huge visual difference this new current gen engine brings). It seems marketing will have to work on the confusion of the genre, maybe a guided walkthrough would be a good idea, like what was done with Saints Row 3 and 4, to show more intense moments, rather than the downtime/menus of streams game outlets have been posting.

    I hope the game can speak for itself, and word of mouth based on the quality of the product does its thing, of course I haven't played it, so I can't be one hundred percent sure what its like, but it's fun to chat about.

    I do wonder if we will see any hints on the story/set piece missions/ more intense moments arriving at launch, because those moments really carried Saints Row 4 in my opinion, the creativity and quality of the main missions.

    I disagree with some peoples assessment I see online that the games are inherently "dumb" or lacking in "depth" I feel there is more nuance to what Volition makes (especially now since there is the hope of challenging gameplay, tactics and strategy). I don't see how an overall silly and lighthearted or comedic thematic tone somehow inherently makes storytelling or writing less interesting. Some wonderful stories with depth and nuance have been told in more lighthearted media, so I don't see why that cannot be the case here. The recent developer stream about Daisy, and the attempt to bring depth and complexity to her, rather than just a one note persona, really fascinated me. Not to mention this is an adult game, so it could confront heavier themes in its story as well.

    Good storytelling is good storytelling, so hopefully it pulls me in, and more importantly, lots of people can enjoy it!
  7. Admixon

    Admixon Modding patch tester

    Fan of Saints likes this.
  8. PC gamer just released a scathing preview and now I'm sad. I don't fully understand what makes the shooting in this "worse" than other games (I can't think of many third person shooters considered good? Nor what there would be in other shooters this game lacks?) or what makes the AI "dumb or "robotic" (they seem more agile than in most games, critically acclaimed games had enemy AI that would stay still a large amount?). Like, I genuinely cannot think of many examples of smart AI in shooters other than what was discussed in the video I posted, so I don't get why these enemies are "dumb" when they seem to be rather impressive. I don't know any games with enemies that parkour over the city scape to fight you?

    What makes the city "lifeless" when it is a huge improvement on Volitions previous titles, and almost all other open world games struggle more with city building? Why is a more grounded gameplay loop instead of "invincible do everything" a worthwhile criticism for a journalist to give, especially since that contradicts other people wanting older style Saints Row titles?

    Maybe they are getting a false opinion because the demos on easy mode? Or is the game actually bad and I'm one of the last to realize it :/

    I'm experiencing a weird dissonance in the scathing criticism I am seeing online and what I'm seeing in front of me, I honestly can't think of any examples of "better" shooting or AI, and I haven't seen enough of the writing to form an opinion, so I'm just sad now, and don't understand why people seem to hate this.

    "Edit" Oh hey, Flippy has an early copy, neat! I will probably find his discussion on it more reliable, seems like a really nice guy.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
  9. Admixon

    Admixon Modding patch tester

  10. Admixon

    Admixon Modding patch tester