Here you guys go, I typed the whole thing up with commentary by yours truly.
PC POWERPLAY'S THE GAMES OF 2009
Deus Ex 3
LONG LIVE THE NEW FLESH
Reinventing ourselves in the strangely familiar world of Deus Ex 3
when it comes to PCPP favourites they don't get much more favoured than Deus Ex, or indeed JAMES COTTEE. So we applied the one to the other to see what insight we could gain. Will Eidos Montreal revolutionize PC gaming all over again, or is this just another ill-fated battle with the invisible war?
Distributor: Eidos Montreal
Developer: Atari [MrCP- "FAIL"]
Pivotal, Seminal,Inspirational - The original Deus Ex changed the world of gaming. Merely mentioning it on a forum is enough to prompt someone to type "OMG reinstalling right now!"
Some of them even mean it.
Soon. Deus Ex will Return. One would expect that a game franchise resurrected a decade on by a completely different team would be an exercise in dire folly. But history can defy our expectations: Fallout 3 doesn't suck It kept a cult gaming dream alive, elevating it to a mainstream success. [MrCP: I'd like to point out that first off that's a fallacy, secondly Fallout 3 is a sequel not a prequel which prequels IMO are way harder to pull off and thirdly it sucks compared to Fallout 1 2 and Tactics, which I think is the only real similarity as this will suck compared to the first but thats just my opinion]
Handled the right way, this could be the best thing that ever happened to Deus Ex. [MrCP: or turn Eidos off from the franchise completely... face it we got lucky this time] which is why its a little unnerving that it's being made by the French.
French Canadians, to be precise. This brings to mind the obnoxious Frenchie Knights from that old Monty Python film, [MrCP: except you said they were canadian.. make up your fucking mind] hurling insults from the battlements as they hog the Holy Grail for themselves [MrCP: they didn't have the grail.. no one did that's what the joke was *sigh* *facepalm*]
Yet such bigotry is unwarranted. Talking to us live from the gaming development capital of Montreal, lead game designer Jean-Francois "Call me JF" Dugas comes across as one of the biggest Deus Ex fans around, even if he does pronounce it "Deuce Ex". [MrCP: Dey-Us-Ex and Du-se-Ex are both fine. The writer is an Australian.. we can't pronounce Greek properly anyway so he can fucking talk]
To Provide a fresh look at this fictional milieu, and to conveniently side-step continuity issues, the new game is a prequel, set in the not-too-distant future world of 2027. It'll be closer to Jhonny Mnemonic than Blade Runner, and apparently this is a good thing. [MrCP: should point out here that Jhonny Mnemonic(film) was the lowest point of Gibson's career and ruined any chance of Neuromancer being made into a film in the 1990s, Gibson never got to show his completed version of JM because it was too long and not suitable for the western market, further more the entire Cyberpunk style was changed to something more Blade Runnerish as opposed to the gritty Escape from New York style gibson had always envisioned (Deus Ex also borrows its style from Escape from New York btw!) which also didn't help that they had Syd Mead working on it.. The other problem is that it failed to do the novel justice turning Molly into a ditsy 80s bimbo and Jhonny into Neo from the matrix (which Keanu would later go onto play *cough* ripoff). Trust me THIS IS NOT A GOOD THING because it spelt the end to Cyberpunk as its own founder managed to some how screw it up- and that's never a good thing]
Wake Up: time to die!
Make no mistake, the world of DX3 is radically different from our own. [MrCP: Dave this is where you come in and say "Deus Ex is based on the real world" because you are 100% right] It's just that these changes aren't always obvious to the eye.
As Dugas puts it: "Transhumanism is at the heart of the Deus Ex experience [MrCP: the word we're looking for is C-Y-B-E-R-P-U-N-K! not Transhumanism] - and its still true with Deus Ex 3. Basically, we're exploring a world where... we want to be grounded in realitiy."
"if you remember in the 80s, we were thinking about 2000 [MrCP: if he'd actually read gibson's work he'd know its more like 2050], and 'oh my god, cars are going to fly' and things like that [MrCP: and we'd all be eating Soylent Green- oh wait that was in Deus Ex lol!]
And today I'm still waiting for my Flying Car! So the point is, things don't change that much if you look on the first layer of things. [MrCP: but they do if its Deus Ex and Fallout]
"But as you see with technology, its more and more present everywhere. Either in terms of the IPhone, whatever. All those gimmicks. A lot of things are making our life more connected to the machine."
"For 2027, so we're trying to state a bit: what does the future hold for us? But we still want to keep it, like I said, grounded in reality. I think one of the things that is going to be the biggest difference is that all the ethical questions, and what we are as human beings, and where should we go, and what are the things we shouldn't play with, and things like that. That is going to be explored in Deus Ex." [MrCP: bring on the freak show then]
As Dugas points out, the trend towards transhumanism - Cybernetic limbs and such- is not science fiction. It's already happening. "There was this African runner, that at some point the Olympic Comittee was preventing him from being part of the contest because he had a prosthesis for his legs, and they were claiming it was giving him an advantage. [MrCP: I'd like to point out 2 things here, firstly Exo-Skeletons are being used in the military.. why implant it? secondly he should be in the special olympics then if he's disabled, I think that would classify as a disability so the whole argument is stupid but I understand he's trying to get all Beyond 2000 (TV Show) on us and say TEH FUTURE IS NOW!] I think that is just a small example of what is to become more and more present in our future."
3 pictures are displayed - The laboratory (the first concept art) with the comment "Jamie? is that you?"
The arm with the exposed skin
A picture with Barrette with the comment Barrette. The bull buckle is especially... intriguing.
Page 35 ---------
The next page has a box stating:
Nothing gets a game banned in Australia as easily as gratuitous, gory violence. Except, of course when the Classification Board is behaving inconsistently, as they are wont do. Either way, Deus Ex is unlikely to cop an RC. At least, not for the gore. "We'll have some blood and things in the game, The thing is, it's not a game about butchery," says Dugas. "We don't want to have gore for the sake of being gory. So, we'll give some feedback to the player that feels right. But the goal is not to try to be edgy just for the sake of being edgy." Dugas also stressed that there won't be any over-the-top 'Xtreme' content, like dueling chainsaws in Gears of War. "But we're going to have mature content, for sure." [MrCP: Most worthless pile of writing ever.. its just a blatant attack on the OFLC for no good reason but I do like how the developer attacks Fallout 3
At its core Deus Ex 3 will explore the ethical dilemmas related to noodling around with what makes us human, without trying to dazzle us with exotic nano-machines or God-like AIs. [MrCP: did you guys even PLAY Deus Ex?] "It's not in space," says Dugas. "It's not Star Wars, you know what I mean? even though we'll have some quite nice sci-fi aspects." [MrCP: WHAT THE FUCK DO YOU CALL CYBERPUNK God fucking damn it]
Back to Basics
As for the failed experiment that was Invisible War [MrCP: 1. Wasn't a failure it actually made some money 2. some people like it Dave I'm looking at you 3. it wasn't an experiment! it was a fucking GAME. Spore is an experiment.], that whole episode is being swept under the rug. Dugas elaborates [MrCP: um yeah IWar has nothing to do with this game because its set nearly 50 years in the future so... like who really gives a shit?].
"One of the key message to take away from this is that we really went back to the core of the Deus Ex franchise [MrCP: because apparently Deus Ex 1 had a third person camera like MGS lol.. fail Not even 1 mention of Cyberpunk or Neuromancer], and tried to understand what made it great. And we started to build on those things; we really wanted to make sure that we were creating an experience that is going to be really strong." For the player, that means freedom. "Choice and Consequence is at the heart of the experience.".
"We have four main gameplay pillars. You can play the entire game using combat. You can play the entire game using stealth. Or you can play the entire game going back and forth between both. And also you'll be able to spice things up with using your hacking skills and/or your social skills to unlock new possibilities.
"so the key here is choice, and we really want the players to be able to play the game they want to play it. And all the features, the core mechanics, the features around it, and all the philosophy of the levels, and things like that fulfill that facility of lettign you play the way your want."
One of the 'fresh perspectives' Eidos Montreal is bringing to the table is the cybernetic augmenations; many will be overly visible during the brief third-person views of your character, when he's taking cover and such. He'll be much closer to the old-school definition of a cyborg [MrCP: again totally missing the point of Deus Ex, might as well had called him Steve Austin]. "It's adding, I would say, some impact on the screen," [MrCP: aka VATS MODE!] says Dugas.
Naturally, the upgrading won't be an end onto itself. "We really want to make sure that we have a really strong story with a really strong characters. We think we are going to have a game that will be appealing for all the people." [MrCP: aka Console trash for cry babies, YAY now my mum can play Deus Ex!]
Try as they might, games developers have yet to cross the Uncanny Valley That gorge of comprehension that makes character models resemble possessed showroom dummies. Considering the goals of the enterprise, their choice of engine is, at face value, alarming. "It's the Tomb Raider Underworld Engine," says Dugas, confidently. Uh-Oh!
Yet from what we were told, by the time the game is finished this basic development platform will be unrecognizable. Thankfully, Dugas explains: "We're pursuing a lot of development to fulfill the needs of Deus Ex 3, and make sure we're as cutting edge as we can. So basically, it's the tomb raider engine, but we're building on top of that."
At this point in development, there's still a lot of experimentation going on. "One of the things that we're pushing for is the experience of interacting with characters. We have dialogue gameplay in the game that is playing little bit with the psychological aspect of things instead of just asking the character to talk to you about Topic A Talk to you about Topic B, and C, things like that. So we're trying to push the envelope in that respect. [MrCP ok I sorta miss understood what it said because the part where it says INSTEAD OF is cutoff on the side of the page Sorry jonas and the rest. The problem I have is if this is just going to be some gimmick mini-game where you have to break the person before they act nice to you, I suspect it will be because they say "social" as a gameplay type. In honesty it better be fucking good.]
"We already have one prototype of an interaction with a character, and I can tell you it's very, very good. I can't remember having seen anything as convincing as that in a game. Definitely, it shows some promise. [MrCP but he never explains it.. that's what confused me.]
SAYS IN BIG TEXT: "True Freedom of Choice is the big new thing in gaming - in the sense that if there aren't any consequences, you're not making a choice at all"
"For the game in general, the visuals, we're still toying with a lot of the features to make sure that we're one of the best-looking games on the market when we ship. We're still experimenting, and trying to push the envelope to make sure that we deliver something that is going to be stunning." [MrCP: raise your hand if you bought Deus Ex 1 because of its graphics technology... 0... yep.. so then why is it so fucking important this time around? that was the mistake Iwar made.]
Choose and Perish
Do you save the little sisters, or do your slaughter them? do you defuse the nuke, or do your let Megaton burn? True freedom of choice is the big new thing in gaming- in the sense that if there aren't any consequences, you're not making a choice at all. Dugas is adamant that a palpable sense of morality will be key to the Deus Ex 3 experience [MrCP: Yes jonas.. that means KARMA KARMA KARMA THE VENCHFUL ELEPHANT]
"Obviously, it's going to be felt in a lot of aspects, not only the gameplay, with the RPG aspects and things like that, but also in the choices that touch the morality. The thing here is we want to avoid to have some sort of trival choices that for a player: 'Okay, I can choose A or B', but in the end it doesn't matter that much, or it doesn't really have an impact on the game. So we're trying to have as much impact on the game as we can. "It doesn't mean that the game is going to have a branching story that goes in all the direction and everything like that [MrCP: Dx1 did], but we really want to give the players some choices that will affect certain aspects of the story in a meaningful way." [MrCP: sounds like a gimmick since at no point have they said "NON-LINEAR".. it sounds even more linear than the first game]
He refused to elaborate [MrCP: NDAs fucking suck balls..]
"But in a nutshell: we really want to make sure that you don't go in Faction A, you do something then go to another faction, you do another that is something conflicting, but in the end there is not really any impact. So we're trying to avoid those things and make sure the cohices you make will have an impact on Your ACTUAL game experience."
On top of the skills you choose to focus on and the moral path you choose to walk.
Theres a few screenshots on the page too, 1 of the fancy office saying manderly has gone up in the world, the one with the guard in the corridor saying MULTITOOL HIM IN THE BRAIN!
another arm, the palace screenshot saying The old Mj12 place, this ain't. and one of the entrance to the labs saying BRING ON THE SPIDER DRONES!. There's also a picture of Barrette
Box: Weapon of Choice
Dugas informs us that as with the other technologies in the game, the weapons of Deus Ex 3 will be deceptively similar to those of our own time. [MrCP: cue ZylonBane, as he hated the idea of changing the Ass Rifle to the Famas so looks like they've committed a sin] "A lot of the weapons are going to be based on real life models. Obviously, we are going to give them our own touch and everything. But we want to ground them into credibility, reality, things like that. "But also we will have some cool, I would say, Prototype weapons that will be a bit more futurisitc" [MrCP: and Canon Breaking]
Hyperbaric charges? homing bullets? regardless of what these new weapons are, they'll face the same difficult upgrade-path choices as your cybernetic innards. "Even on the more normal guns, or weapons, we'll have some upgrades- because guns will be upgradeable. We'll have some unique upgrades that might change the behavior of certain guns. It's going to be a mix."
Equipment upgrades will also take you to very different places, further compounding your will. The there are the chance encounters. [MrCP: which are the random encounters from Fallout I mentioned]. "We also want to touch certain things," says Dugas "like maybe bring some events in front of the player, where there's no good or bad answer to that, or you're not forced to do anything about that either. So it would be more about how certain players are reacting to what they see, and if they decide to intervene or not."
But does it work? For the proof of the pudding, we need only look to Dugas's experience with the game, and how it brought out his own personality. "Personally? I feel like I'm more like a good guy, so I have a tendency to play as a good guy. Here and there I will maybe try to push the limits, and see what kind of feedback I can get by playing evil. But I do it more for the sake of experimentation than anything else. No, I feel that I'm a good guy. I'm a good guy. Definitely" [MrCP: So yeah. Karma is IN!]
The way he tells it, Deus Ex 3 is so immersive he doesn't even want to play a pretend villain. [MrCP: SERIOUSLY WTF!? WTF DOES THAT HAVE TO DO WITH ANYTHING!]
Box: The Invisible Enemy
Eidos Montreal stressed to us that the next Deus Ex game will be returning to the roots of teh series, and to this end they're focusing on what made the first Deus Ex great. Implicit in these statements was the admission that the second Deus Ex game was a bit of a cock-up. While not an abject disaster, it was definitely a step backwards. Deus Ex: Invisible War was released simultaneously on the original Xbox, and the designers must have felt a driving need to pander to the lowest common denominator of the console market. [MrCP: YET THIS GAME IS MULTIPLATFORM ALSO YOU ELITIST FUCK TARD!]
to that end, the skill system was radically simplified, with a handful of slots available for your 'biomod' cybernetic upgrades. A similarly streamlined system applied to guns. To put ammo management within reach of Neanderthals, all the varied firearms you collected drew their ammo from a common pool, instead of requiring individual collections of specific calibre rounds. Inventory slots were also highly restrictive. None of this would have mattered if the role-playing aspects were still up to snuff [MrCP: fuck off. YES THEY WOULD, it was the RPG stuff that people liked about Iwar you idiot] - which they weren't. More troubling still for some players was that none of the competing factions were explicitly good or evil. [MrCP: For fucks sake! Dx1 didn't have a karma system either, none of the factions were good! they were all evil.. What fucking moron needs a karma system to tell them good from evil anyway.. I thought thats what Church was... and I don't fucking need that.] Sure, for uni students with silly scarves it's easy to assert the moral ambiguity of the cosmos: "Who can say what is right or wrong" [MrCP: those people would be Deus Ex fans.. REAL ones! Asshole] But when you've paid good money for an open-ended adventure [MrCP: Um.. yeah Dx1 wasn't open ended either.. it was "NON-LINEAR".. Open-Ended means you can keep playing after the big THE END screen.. I think he meant Open World or some shit but neither applies to Deus Ex] a hint or two doesn't go astray [MrCP: and this guy is a professional game reviewer? GROW SOME FUCKING BALLS!]. Even those who loved it to bits hit a snag- Invisible War was way too short. Thus we were relieved to hear that none of its sins will live on in Deus Ex 3. [MrCP: IWar was not Short, I found it satisfactory.. Fallout 3, THATS SHORT. MGS4 That too is short as it can be completed in only 6 hours.]
"I like it when a game [PRESENTS] choices in a way that is kind of honest, that the game doesn't tell you "oh, that's bad" or "oh,that's good". I like it when a game gives me the choices, and then I decide for myself if its good or not." [MrCP: well then our journo friend won't like this game given his comments above] "And therefore I can play with my own ethics, and my own morality. As opposed as having a game that tells me what's right, what's wrong. Therefore it's not about me anymore, it's about what the game tells me what it should be, you know. "So yes! the game should be immersive enough".
"several" multiple endings are confirmed for DX3, each the climax of a substantial campaign. "the game right now our estimates is going to be close to the 20-hour mark on the critical path," says Dugas "With exploration, and side quests, and stuff like that, its going to be the 30 and up. But we want to balance the game in a way that you won't necessarily be able to experience all the augmenations on the first play through, or all the weapons, because the economy is going to be made in a way that if you invest a lot in a certain aspect- lets say you want to have all Augmenations.
"Maybe you're able to have them all,but on a very limited level [MrCP: This sounds gay and longevity increasing gimmicks]. So you won't have enough economy to expand their ability, and push them to their limits. For weapons, the same thing, Life if you invest a lot in augmenations maybe you won't have enough money to get all the weapons. [MrCP: I honestly doubt that, in DX1 I had too much money.. so possibly Money is gimped or set a fixed QTY.. which IMO would be GAYEH] " Just like in real life, you can't have it all. [MrCP: Tell that to Donald Trump then] "But you can replay it again, and try new abilities, new weapons, and obviously its going to affect your experience [MrCP: WOW REPLAYABILITY! SO YOU SAY THIS GAME CAN BE PLAYED MORE THAN ONCE! GTFO!] And some of those things that you choose, or choose not, will open new areas that otherwise would have been impossible to reach. "So I think this game is going to offer a lot of re-playability."
Forever and a day
True to form, the roller-coaster conspiracy driving the plot will take the player around the globe. Yet at this stage, Duga was only willing to reveal one of the locales: "Shanghai." We paused in the hope that he'd continue, but he did not rinse to the bait. "I'm stopping here.HAHAHAHA!" we also rattled off the obligatory cultural cringe question: Is Australia in it? Can you go to sydney? "Maybe.... I dunno" [MrCP: NDA NDA NDA NDA idiots]
Assuming it all comes together, the only real question left is the release date. "TBD. When its done. As soon as possible, but not too soon neither." [MrCP: FUCKING ND FUCKING A!]
Wait a second... when its done? that sounds chillingly familiar - yet it leads to the most heart-felt reply of the interview. [MrCP: oh fuck off.. comparing this to DNF... wtf!]
The offices erupt when we asked if they're going to beat Duke Nukem Forever. "hahaahahahahaha!!! I hope not- in terms of taking longer than that." -Dugas laughs so hard he struggles to translate his thoughts into English.
"No, that's a legendary game. I remember, I still have my '97 PC Gamer cover that was announcing Duke Nukem Forever, and I was really excited, and today I have to have to remember that this game should be coming out sometime soon."
so, to be clear, Deus Ex is definitely coming out first? "Ahhhh... Maybe! Maybe! If we llok at the curve right now, chances are that we're going to be there before them... HAHAHAHAHA!" [MrCP: what'd be funny is if DNF turned out to be better than Deus Ex 3 lol.. that was worth the 10+ years it took]
Dugas might be making light of the whole process, as part of his sort of coy French Canadian thing he has going, but no game currently in development is more important to PCPP than Deus Ex 3.. [MrCP: 3 pages later they say the same about Bioshock 2
The original still encapsulates everything the PC has going for it. CHOICE. SCOPE. REPLAYABILITY. [MrCP: Um! those are also possible on Consoles.. also Deus Ex 1 came out on PS2 and has all of those.. idiot]
Here's hoping the new game does to.
Has a few screens too:
1. Sewers "IT BURNS IT BURNS, NO WAIT THATS JUST THE CHLORINE"
2. a computer room "I THINK THE COMPUTER HATES ME"
3. the lab again "HACK IT, CRACK IT or SMASH IT, That's what Deus Ex is REALLY about." [MrCP: Um... no]
4. A picture of Shanghai Midgar "Grey Death's too good for 'em"
5. another FUCKING ARM!
---- page 39
Sorry for misleading you about the 3 choices thing, the stupid page crease is where the Negating word is so it looses all meaning.. especially the amount of times he contradicts himself.
I point those out btw
I also want to point out that JF is the lead designer. Rene is just the Project Leader, ultimately its the game design that concerns me more.