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***Official Deus Ex 2 Discussion Thread***


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#1 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesH

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Posted November 30 2003 - 06:58 AM

This is coming out next week and there's no thread for it so I figured I'd start one. The first Deus Ex is the best game ever made IMO, which makes Deus Ex 2 my most anticipated game by far. However, I'm really concerned about the sequel. Apparantly Ion Storm gave the WRONG guy control of DE2, and reaction to the game has been overwhelmingly negative so far. Some of the stuff I'm not too concerned about, such as them "selling out" for console gamers. I plan to get this on the Xbox anyway. However, it also seems like they've taken some of the best parts of the first game and totally gutted them. The first Deus Ex had a long and epic quest, whereas this one is supposedly about 1/3 as long. All weapons use the same ammo, something that really has me scratching my head. Furthermore, I hear that headshots aren't any more damaging to enemies than pinky toe shots. The experience system is also gone, which was one of my favorite parts in the first game. Anyone play the demo of the PC version yet? Is it as awful as everyone says?

#2 of 61 OFFLINE   John Madia

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Posted November 30 2003 - 07:32 AM

Well, even if it's shorter the game will probably have more replay value with all the different factions you can join. I thought the first game was great but will wait for the reviews for this one. I only have a GeForce 2 so I can't run the demo.

#3 of 61 OFFLINE   Romier S

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Posted November 30 2003 - 08:39 AM

Theres been some discussion here:

Deus Ex 2 discussion

My thoughts as per that thread:

I usually try to remain level headed but after playing the demo through to completion three times I got angrier and angrier each time. The demo is garbage. From the moment you enter the world you are given a horrendous interface that is both unintuitive and intrusive. You are introduced to a small story segment which leads to several possibilities but my main problem is those possiblities are so blatant you hardly feel as though you are exploring or discovering anything on your own. Its just like "Hey you can go here or you can do this", you decide we do dont care either way. That is not so bad but again it feels so damned forced that it irritated me. DX was the game that it was becasue it really gave players a choice. The choice of exploration and action. I didn't feel that here.

The inventory system is absolute shit. One word C-U-M-B-E-R-S-O-M-E. The original game had an excellent slotted inventory system ala Diablo which worked beautifully and allowed you to carry various levels of equipment. Very easy to move around and easy to equip what was needed. In DX2 its all style over substnace. The interface sure is pretty but it will take you a good hour or so just to figure out how to use the damnable thing to its fullest extent and even then you will continue to bungle about trying do something as simple as change an item to the main slot.

Another wonderful discovery is that every weapon in the game uses the exact same ammo. Everything from a flamethrower to a pistol uses the exact same type of ammunition. You just pick up ammo as you go and stockpile it. No need to bother looking for any othe type since its not there. Just an utterly silly design choice.

Hacking and using the multi-tool are both here and work much the same thank god (though now the multi-tool and lockpicking have been combined into one) however the entire ability system has been ripped out of the game. You no longer earn experience points that you can allocate to different abilities such as hacking, heavy weapons etc.....(to be fair this has been common knowledge since early in development but believe me it feels different when you actually play the game) You simply move along and acquire new nano-implants/bio-mods and thats about it. Its akin to Konami removing the XP system from Castlevania Lament of Innocence. Mind you in the demo you are already given several to test but I suppose the only choices here are which implants you choose to gain and which ones you dont.

Oh and let me just go on about the graphics which while nice looking run at the pace of a snail. Severe framerate drops all over the place. Some of the worst character ragdoll physics Ive ever witnessed in a game. (though some of the object physics are good and they better be considering the Havok physics engine is being used here). The lighting effects were very nice but the character models and lip synching looked very average in comparison to the surroundings.

You literally need to spend a good 20-30 minutes in the games .INI file to get Invisible War running at some form that allows you to enjoy it. You can move the UI out to the corner of the screen so as to be less intrusive via the .INI. You can also correct the horrid mouse lag and damage ratios on the enemies. Theres also a good bit of graphics tweaking you can do to help the performance but as it stands you should not *HAVE* to do all this nonsense just to play the stinking game. If this is any indication of the final release, the PC version is dead on arrival. (there is also a bug where ever time the game loads a new area your key mappings are reset, however Ion Storm has gone on record as saying its a demo only bug.)

The combat is absolutely horrid. As mentioned above damage ratio's are all off the scale, taking almost 6-7 direct head shots to put down an enemy down and even then you never feel as though you are in control of doing anything of interest. The shotgun thankfully helps as that only takes two or so shots but I find it interesting that Ion Storm looks to have not included any type of area specific damage. Especially in a sequel to game that at least recognized when you shot someone in the head! Also worth mentioning is the the stun rod has been changed for the worst now just being the most ineffective weapon in the game. This was really a great weapon in the original allowing smooth take downs if you had a stealth based character.

Speaking of stealth. There is none. Its almost impossible to sneak up on anyone since the the games AI is set to attack if you do the slightest thing wrong. Want to hack into an ATM machine? Go ahead but you'll be shot on sight by a guard for even looking. At the same time you can throw a steel barrel at a guards face, hit them with it and they simply say "That was disrespectful". Ion Storm also decided the lean buttons were not needed so they yanked them out.

On the subject of physics when you shoot an enemy they launch back as though they were hit by a dumptruck (ie completely unrealistically and horribly laughable). I literally threw a body up in the air and shot it continuously with a shotgun, I was able to keep it in the air for 3 shots. It was like playing hackey sack with a human corpse (I dont find that to be a compliment either but it was the most fun I had in this ridiculous excuse for a demo).

All in all I am hoping to god almighty that this is some kind of joke and this demo is not indicative of the final product because as it stands I will be skipping this game in its entirety. This is coming from a serious fan of the original game (and mind you I pimped out the original to plenty of people in my day! On PC and PS2). This is however a demo which I am trying to keep in mind through my words of disbelief.

I will more than likely give the Xbox version a rent/buy to see if possibly the horrid excuse for an interface is more intuitive with a controller (which it seems to be designed for) and also to sample the gameplay further. It may not come across in my ranting above but I *AM* trying to keep an open mind for the final product but I tell you with the game shipping on the 2nd of December Ion Storm have alot of impressing to do with this consumer.


-Some more recent thoughts after trying the demo again. Its still shit and Im still angered. I really hope the Xbox version fixes a good number of the interface related issues et al. This is after all (and as mentioned above) a demo and thus the final game should not be judged in its entirety here but it would be an understatement for me to say that I'm hesistant.

#4 of 61 OFFLINE   Dave F

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Posted November 30 2003 - 08:59 AM

[quote] there is also a bug where ever time the game loads a new area your key mappings are reset, however Ion Storm has gone on record as saying its a demo only bug [quote] This is due to the user.ini file having the read-only attribute set. You can get a tweaker that fixes most of the demo's weirdness. Well, at least the weirdness that can be fixed. It clears up some mouse lag, graphics settings, makes the UI smaller, and fixes the attributes on the ini files.

I'm definitely checking out both versions of the game before I buy either. It was a no-brainer before playing the demo, but there are soooo many odd decisions in the demo that I don't know if it's worth buying yet.

In some forums there are people that are pathetically clinging to the idea that everything will be fixed in a patch, but many of the issues are large gameplay issues - things that would require major reworking.

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#5 of 61 OFFLINE   Dave F

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Posted November 30 2003 - 09:02 AM

BTW: An interesting thread can be found here.

-Dave
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#6 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesH

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Posted November 30 2003 - 09:50 AM

[quote] Actually, Warren Spector is/was the main main for both games. [quote]

I thought Harvey Smith had control of DX2. Regardless of who did it, this is a real tragedy. I'll still buy the game just because it's Deus Ex, but it doesn't look like DX2 will be the experience I've been waiting for ever since playing the original.

I really don't understand why they have decided to ruin the game. The first one had a few tiny problems, mainly in the AI area and the general feel of the weapons, but the core gameplay was rock solid and would be ahead of its time even today. All they needed to do was fix the AI, make the general improvements you'd expect to see in a textbook sequel with a new physics engine, and add in some Splinter Cell style light/dark stealth. It wouldn't have been a stretch to expect them to make a 9.5+ quality game with this very obvious formula. I hate it when some of the more artsy game designers make their "artistic vision" subservient to what fans of the series want.

Man, between this potential disaster, Ninja Gaiden's possible delay, and Morrowind GOTY being almost unplayable on my Xbox, this has not been the best holiday season.

#7 of 61 OFFLINE   Romier S

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Posted November 30 2003 - 10:03 AM

[quote] This is due to the user.ini file having the read-only attribute set. [quote]

Yeah I know Dave. Didn't bother to get into it further in my impressions. Mainly just wanted to know that the bug in question would not make its way to the final release in the interest of fairness. Besides, I was still seeing red when I wrote the above.Posted Image

#8 of 61 OFFLINE   Dave F

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Posted November 30 2003 - 10:12 AM

Lol, I totally understand! I had to put the demo away for a day or two because it was just so disappointing. Posted Image

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#9 of 61 OFFLINE   Jay Mitchosky

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Posted November 30 2003 - 10:40 AM

I made this the official discussion thread for all things DX2.
"The computer had attained consciousness, only to reject it, claiming it was too unstable an operating system."

#10 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesHl

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Posted November 30 2003 - 11:55 AM

A new story using the old engine would have been quite a lot better if the demo is any indication. I won't cite all of the annoying changes as it's been done to death.

#11 of 61 OFFLINE   Frank Grimes

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Posted November 30 2003 - 02:57 PM

I was seriously going to buy a new computer for this game (it just barely runs the first one now). Looks like I'll have to wait for HL2 or a new Tribes game before I upgrade hardware...
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#12 of 61 OFFLINE   Romier S

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Posted November 30 2003 - 05:10 PM

Heres some screens I took tonight for anyone interested. Shows the UI (Mind you I edited the INI to push the UI as much to the sides of the screen as possible so that is not how it looks by default.). Graphically the game looks very good. Using an available tweak tool (which with the push of a button fixes most of the sloppy settings in the INI files) performance (on my system at 1024X768, anything higher turns into a slide show) can be improved quite a bit. Keep in mind this is on a 3.06 gig with 768mb of RDRAM and an ATI 9700pro.

Still does not help some of the bonehead design choices et al.. mentioned above.

Here you go:

DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2
DX2

[quote] Actually, Warren Spector is/was the main main for both games. [quote]

He sure isn't. As noted above Harvey Smith is lead project head on DX2. In reading a bit more about the current situation it seems development on the game was quite troubled. Lead artists leaving, arguments and problems with how folks invisioned the game. Gamespy has a very revealing interview with Smith up.

#13 of 61 OFFLINE   Jay Mitchosky

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Posted December 01 2003 - 12:44 AM

That looks like the same interface as the Xbox screens I've seen, or at least very similar.
"The computer had attained consciousness, only to reject it, claiming it was too unstable an operating system."

#14 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesHl

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Posted December 01 2003 - 02:40 AM

[quote] That looks like the same interface as the Xbox screens I've seen, or at least very similar. [quote]
I think they're identical.

#15 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesH

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Posted December 01 2003 - 03:17 PM

[quote] In reading a bit more about the current situation it seems development on the game was quite troubled. Lead artists leaving, arguments and problems with how folks invisioned the game. Gamespy has a very revealing interview with Smith up. [quote]

Where did you read all this? I downloaded the video interview but it didn't have much detail regarding internal problems. It did have some pretty shocking revelations though, as Smith mentions that he likes to kick back with the Xbox version of Finding Nemo somewhere around the 6 minute mark. This really begs the question: why oh WHY did Spector not set Smith up in a room with Finding Nemo, some juice boxes, and some fruit snacks, and take back control of what was clearly a troubled project?

#16 of 61 OFFLINE   John Madia

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Posted December 01 2003 - 04:25 PM

Review up at gamespot:
http://www.gamespot.....ar/review.html

#17 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesH

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Posted December 01 2003 - 05:33 PM

IGN Xbox also reviewed it and gave it a 9. How much do you think Eidos paid IGN to say:

[quote] Sure, some people will say that the game's made too many concessions to convenience -- no more skills and one kind of ammo spring to mind -- but all this means is that you have fewer concerns distracting you from the main point of the game, your experience making decisions within the game's story. [quote]

Still, an 8 from Gamestop and a 9 from IGN would seem to indicate that while the game might be a tremendous turnoff at first glance, it's probably ok once you spend the time needed to get into it. It may not be GOTY, but it's a presumably half decent game set in the Deus Ex universe.

#18 of 61 OFFLINE   John Madia

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Posted December 01 2003 - 07:11 PM

Don't forget that gamespot gave the original Deus Ex an 8.2 so they placed this one only a notch below it. As for throwing around dead bodies like they were basketballs, doesn't the player have super strength? I'm a bit worried about the length though; the first game took quite a while to get through while the sequel only takes ~20 hours. The interface won't bug me as much if it's more intuitive on a controller; I don't have the brand new computer needed to run it so I'll have to settle for the Xbox version. Still, I hope they didn't dumb it down too much; not needing to holster your weapon in public is a bad idea. Although the ability to make choices and having those choices affect future events is one of the best parts of the game, I'm afraid that their might be to many shades of grey. Sure having everything black and white is boring, but the gamespot review suggests everything a shade of grey. I like having the ability to make choices but it would get depressing pretty quick if you always had to choose the lesser of two evils.

#19 of 61 OFFLINE   Derrik Draven

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Posted December 02 2003 - 11:00 AM

Any of you guys Thief fans?

I loved Thief I/II...

Just think, it's being developed right down the hall from Deus Ex and using the EXACT same game engine, with a few tweaks. (if I've read correctly)

I've been waiting for Thief III since I heard that many of the boys over at the defunct Looking Glass Studios were hired by Ion Storm and, were beginning work on a 3rd installment of the Thief series.

How would you guys like to play Thief III with stuttery framerates and enemies with bad detection AI, that also run right at you when they find you?

...would pretty much completely ruin the game since it relies so heavily on intelligent enemy AI.

I'm worried, really worried. Posted Image
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#20 of 61 OFFLINE   JamesHl

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Posted December 02 2003 - 12:57 PM

Surely someone will bite the bullet and purchase it so we can hear how the full game stacks up?




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