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Can't believe there isn't a Soul Reaver II topic yet...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Derrik Draven, Nov 1, 2001.

  1. Derrik Draven

    Derrik Draven Supporting Actor

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    Maybe it's because everyone's underwhelmed?
    I bought it yesterday and, have been playing it quite a bit. Probably 6 hours into the game.
    Truly, I can't say whether I'm impressed or not. Maybe it's because I'm still stoned out on a Vicadin induced high since having my wisdom teeth cut out on Monday morning but, Soul Reaver II hasn't left me with the WOW factor that other recent games have, and I was REALLY waiting on this game.
    Graphically, it's not pushing the PS2 hardware, imho. Look at ICO or DMC...then look at Soul Reaver II. Notice the difference? To me, it looks like the PS1 engine, just much smoother at a constant 60fps. Yeah, the draw distance is pushed way back and some of the mist effects are cool (especially at the temple in the swamp), but you sure as hell would never use this game to demo your PS2's next gen capabilities.
    But, gameplay is everything right? If that's true then this game succeeds on improving it over the 1st one. The fighting is deeper, the enemies are smarter and, thank the Lord I haven't run across ANY stinking block puzzles. Now everything's a light/mirror puzzle. [​IMG]
    Many times you'll be jumped by several enemies at the same time. Freaks you out at 1st but, just like unbelievable kung fu movies, everyone pretty much waits their turn to take a whack at you. Still, it's a refreshing change from the 1st game to see one enemy hang back to shoot projectiles at you while his buddies up front keep you busy so he can keep nailing you. They'll shoot you off the walls as well, if they can. I haven't found much use for using the "block" button, since many times your enemy will use an unblockable attack. 'Tis better to sidestep and stick 'em in the back.
    So, no stupid block puzzles? Nope...no block puzzles as of yet. As for their level of difficulty, that's very much going to differ from person to person. If you're dumb, this game will be hard, if you're not...it won't. [​IMG] Seriously though...in the 1st temple, the dark forge, I would've been stuck forever if it weren't for just simply "bumping into" something that allowed me to figure out what to do. All I can say is, be VERY attentive of your surroundings. Look at everything.
    Sound (my favorite game subject) has had some very significant improvements. From the subtle echo effects that change depending on the spaciousness of the area you're in, to the clang of your weapon as it smashes into the ground, everything sounds much sharper and better defined. The music is well done this time around, as was the 1st but, my complaint is that I have yet to find anyway to adjust it. It's either or or off.
    Personally, I like to turn music down to where it sort of just fills the background...sets a mood...and then crank up the sound effects. But, not so here. Sound effects and music are either on or off... [​IMG]
    Voice acting is the same top notch quality that this series is known for. Not much else to say here except there is ALOT of it this time around.
    As for the story this time around, I won't give away anything yet. Hell...I'm still learning it as I go but, it seems kind of hard to follow the story this time around. Of course, it may be because...like I said...I'm kinda whacked out on painkillers but, my general taste of the story thus far is that it's sort of losing it's way. Kind of convoluted...not as razor sharp at Soul Reaver I. You were simply out to get the bastard that tried to destroy you. Now...it's gettin' weird...
    You play, you decide.
    Gamespot says that the game is too short. I'm getting tired of this growing trend. Ico, Devil May Cry, now this game...short-n-sweet. Screw that. I want my games long-n-sweet. Too much to ask? Look at Grand Theft Auto III. Thank you DMA!
    Gamespot may be right. If finding the reaver temples and activating the 4 qualities you can imbue on the reaver are the guts of this game...I'm just over halfway finished already. That's not acceptable imho, for a game that's been waited on for a couple of years now.
    Well...this is way long enough already and, I just popped another Vicadin....I'm cleared for takeoff!!!!! Weeeeeee...
    ------------------
    "...better to have a gun and not need it than to need a gun and not have it". - Slater, True Romance
     
  2. Derrik Draven

    Derrik Draven Supporting Actor

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    Damn painkillers!!! I just realized I'm in the wrong forum. DOH!!!!! [​IMG]
    Sorry 'bout that mods!
     
  3. Dan Brecher

    Dan Brecher Producer

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    Yes, you're not helping in trying to get conversation going on a new game by posting in hardware. [​IMG] Consider it moved, and consider it amongst of the growing amount of releasing making me finally want a PS2.
    Looking forward to chat on this.
    Dan (UK)
     
  4. Joseph Young

    Joseph Young Screenwriter

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    Derrik, thanks for the first impressions! I played through the first Soul Reaver on my DC, and block puzzles notwithstanding [​IMG] I quite enjoyed it.
    I will be purchasing this title, if only for the above par voice acting (if SR1 is any indication) and the fact that there is a serious shortage of brooding, gothic morality plays in today's gaming climate. [​IMG]
    I, too, was underwhelmed by the screenshots of SR2. All the screen shots I've seen have looked virtually identical to the DC version of Soul Reaver, but perhaps this is simply my expectations getting the better of me. [​IMG]
    Lastly, forgive my ignorance, but what is the offical release date for this title?
    Cheers,
    Joseph
     
  5. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    Im going to have to kindly disagree with Derrick on a number of points.
    Graphically I think the game is exceptional looking. While I agree it is not pushing the PS2 hardware to the limit There are some things in there that are definite eye candy (the first time you go underwater and see the grass swaying is just beatiful to behold). If anyone has been a fan of the series since the first game (LOK Blood Omen) you will revel in seeing some of the locales from the first game in their full 3d glory. (Seeing the Pillars of Nosgoth in their pristine state in full 3d is breathtaking IMHO) I think people are really underestimating the looks of this game. It doesn't quite reach the standards of DMC, ICO, or MGS2 but I dont think it s a slouch in any way.
    Sound wise Im just gonna go ahead and get this out of the way. No game has voice acting that can even come close to the touching the quality level of SR2. Yes, Its that good. It's dramatic, emotional, and realistic. It better be too cause I do one complaint and that is at times there may be too much talk and not enough play (Im about 5 hours in myself).
    Im also gonna disgree on the story. Soul Reaver 1 razor sharp? I cant disagree more. SR1 was one big tease with a really crap ending. The revelations that Raziel came too were interesting as was the battling of your brothers. All in all though the story was so incomplete and disjointed that I felt it was the biggest weakness to the game (especially after the storyline in Blood Omen). So far allot of the questions I had at the end of Blood Omen and SR1 have been answered or seem to be closed to being answered in SR2. I agree the story is more convoluted but I think that is its strenth. It seems to be better put together and gives you enough clues and hints to make you want to keep playing the game and stay interested in what is happening (The voice acting goes a long way towards helping this also! [​IMG]).
    All in all I am really enjoying the game and I think it is a great addition to an already stellar Holiday lineup for the PS2. Now hurry up Nov13th......Solid Snake and I have some terrorism to squash!!
    [Edited last by Romier S on November 01, 2001 at 04:33 PM]
     
  6. Joseph Young

    Joseph Young Screenwriter

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    Thanks for the comments. I've really been looking forward to this title. There is just something about adventure/puzzle exploration games that really appeals to me, especially with a darker fansastical slant. I'm glad to hear that the voice acting in SR2 continues the trend of excellence.
    I managed to find a used copy of 'Blood Omen' (PSX) after playing through Soul Reaver, and although it's graphically inferior and has a very clunky interface, the plot kept me playing.
    Cheers,
    Joseph
     
  7. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    I heard the game is fun. That means its worth $50 to me.
    Also, a lot of the images in the game (like the maps for the walls and stuff) are in high res and the demo I played looked REALLY good graphically. It might not be Gran Turismo 3 or Metal Gear Solid 2, but its better than DC and if it plays good then it's worth it.
     
  8. Iain Lambert

    Iain Lambert Screenwriter

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    mumblemumbledreamcastmumble
    Sorry for that. Anyway, should this come out on something I own (or I give in and buy another Sony console) I'll be more constructive...
     
  9. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Supporting Actor

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    Derrick, with regards to your complaint re: game length, there was a news item on Ign's PS2 site a couple months ago reporting that Sony has very clearly told its game developers that it wants its games to look better, but play shorter. They'd rather concentrate on the graphics than the length apparently. Don't shoot your lowly messenger here, that's just what I read on ign, though I am hard pressed to find a reasoning behind gyping people on their games.
    When you think about it, the average game is, say, $50 (if this is inflated, blame my Canadiana). That's about... five movies depending on your area. Go with five. Now, saying, on average, a movie is two hours long (give or take, it's round and this isn't exact [​IMG], you'd need an equivalent ten hours of game to make up the same amount of time.
    I'm not equating games with movies, yadda yadda, and a good game you always wish was longer, and a bad movie you wish was about fifteen minutes long, but the entertainment per dollar concept is solid enough [​IMG].
    Anyway, my personal opinion is that, give 'n take, I want a game to last around ten hours minimum enjoyable. If it's less than that, I feel way robbed. Then again, anything over forty hours, say, Final Fantasy, starts to drag near the end....
    There must be a middle ground beyond the extremely short vs. extremely long. Hard to say. But that's the answer to the why of the trend...
     
  10. Joseph Young

    Joseph Young Screenwriter

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    The powers that be at Eidos have crafted a fully realized mythology that dives in fearlessly with the very opening scene in SR2. The makers of this game have reconstructed the entire final sequence of Soul Reaver, in full CGI, telling in the gamers in effect, that the 'letdown' ending was only a glimpse of things to come. SR2's consistency as far as storyline (even hearkening back to Blood Omen) is remarkable.
    The instruction book contains a complete chronolocial summation of all the events in BO and SR, so that the extensive narrative has a backstory. Once you complete a significant cut-scene, you can access the screenplay (!!) of that scene to study the dialogue without having to watch it over again. What a brilliant move!
    The voice acting is top-notch. Humorous, tinged with agony and irony, simply perfect.
    Having played the game for a few hours, I can safely say that the graphics surpass the Dreamcast's SR, in terms of animation, polygons, frame-rate and draw distance.
    True, the graphics do not rival those of DMC in terms of splendour and style, but SR2's intention is not to 'best' that title but to create a fully realized world, with rats, bats, frogs, birds, gorgeous architecture and a more complex combat/fighting system, as well as an tragic hero's tale.
    Joseph
     
  11. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    I think that the idea that you should get a certain hours per dollar in a game is stupid. ICO is only a few hours, but at only 2 and a half hours into the game, I was saying to myself "just this is worth $50" because it was. Its the overall experience, not the amount of time. If a DVD is a great movie and it looks and sounds stunning and has crap extras, you could say it wasn't worth it time wise but was quality wise.
    If Soul Reaver 2 is anything like the first game and the demo, then its worth $50.
    Games over 40 hours aren't really dragging on, but most of them are capable of being beaten in less than 40 hours. If this isn't ture, then the game is either dragging on from bad design or is just very....epic.
     
  12. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  13. Joseph Young

    Joseph Young Screenwriter

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    BrianB,
    Credit acknowledged. You are absolutely right. I did not give proper credit to those directly responsible for the rich tapestry of history in the Kain universe. Thanks for the correction.
    They deserve the utmost praise in developing such rich, complex characters and environments.
    Joseph
     
  14. Derrik Draven

    Derrik Draven Supporting Actor

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  15. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    If a game is too short for it to be enjoyable, then it was not worth the money.
    If when you are done with the game you are satisfied, then it was worth the money.
    ICO was only a few hours long and was more than worth the money because it was so good.
    Do you get what I'm saying?
     
  16. Peter_A

    Peter_A Second Unit

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    Well I just finished it......and I'm returning it.
    Good story as always, but too damn short! I finished it in about 5 hours. Let's just hope Legacy Of Kain 2 is a little longer.
     
  17. Joseph Young

    Joseph Young Screenwriter

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    To each their own.
    I know we all have our opinions about the different videogaming web sites..
    Gamespot claimed SR2 is a short game (5 hours or so) and lowered its score considerably. IGN gave it a 12-16 hour finishing time in its review. I guess this speaks volumes about the skill of the respective reviewers.
    I guess this goes to show that some of us buy games just to 'beat' them, and others buy games for the experience of playing and replaying them. Is SR2 worth replaying? IMHO, the Kain Franchise may not have much replay value as, let's say, Tony Hawk 3. But the fighting system is fun to master and the environments are beautiful and eerie. Not a title I would object to playing again at some point.
    It will stay on my shelf. [​IMG]
    Joseph
     
  18. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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  19. Derrik Draven

    Derrik Draven Supporting Actor

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    I care more about the experience while playing the game, more than beating it.
    If the experience is too short for me, I feel robbed.
    ------------------
    "...better to have a gun and not need it than to need a gun and not have it". - Slater, True Romance
     
  20. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Supporting Actor

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    Hmm, I think maybe I wasn't too clear in my criticism. I'm not saying that every game needs to be long, but I think that games which are going to be extremely short should at least cost decidedly less because they are frankly of less value to the consumer.
    I've played a number of games that were very pleasant experiences, despite being extremely brief. Full Throttle stands out most prominently in my mind, a game that is nothing short of outstanding in its presentation and fun factor, but is also incredibly brief, at maybe five hours of play time, if that.
    Same deal with Loom. Good game, for what there is of it. Loom's actually even worse, you can beat that game in two hours, easily.
    But, I've had games that were much better than that. Final Fantasy IV takes me around, say, twenty hours to beat and was one of my best game playing experiences ever. Yet, if the two had been available at the same time, it would have cost just as much as Soul Reaver 2. 20 hours vs. 5? I think not. And I've replayed FFIV about three times already.
    I love replaying my games, don't get me wrong. I've played Gabriel Knight about a dozen times already, but it's not short either. I just don't think that an amazing game experience necessarily gets diluted by lasting for a longer time period than five measly hours.
    Like, say, Half-Life. It only hiccups once, and that's in the Xen portion, which is largely due to its design instead of any inherent boredom with the game design.
    Saying a game should be short because it's a mind-blowing experience is like a crutch to designers that they can make a skimpy amount of material, as long as its bang-whiz enough. That's just a lack of originality, just of a different form.
    Again, I'm not knocking length, just saying it's a bit much asking me to cough out the same price for a 20 hour game compared to a 5 hour one. Even Resident Evil 2, which I'm currently going through for the fourth time, is going to take me about 10 hours just because it's a long, well-paced game.
    Look at it this way, I shelled out for Typing of the Dead, which is an extremely short game, typing simulator or no. It cost me a mere $35 Canadian. If I had been confronted with a $60 Canadian price tag for the game, no sale. As games go, it's technically and fun-wise great, but it's so short that $60 would be outright robbery.
    Hopefully this won't contradict what I wrote before, since I can only barely remember it [​IMG]. My two cents.
    ------------------
    Mark Evans
    Low Rent Movie Critic, Low Rent Home Theater Owner, Low Rent Everything
     

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