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Rage 2

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#31

I am currently thinking that id should have had more saying and that the game needed at least another year of development.

Avalanche has put out a few title recently I was interested in at first, as I liked their theme and atmosphere. But they were all very broken (technichally: bugs, crashes) and are said to be boring and repetitive in the end. I really wanted to get Generation Zero but I am waiting another year until I look at it again, as Avalanche still patches the game regularely (users say it is like an Early Access title, but already fully released) and writes an open letter to the community twice a month to ask for feedback and to communicate the roadmap.
So there is hope I might enjoy a few of their gomes in the future.
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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#32

I played the game a lot in the last 24 hours. I'm now near the end of the story. So after playing it a lot, and reading other people's impressions, I think I have a pretty good idea of Rage 2's true strengths and weaknesses, and why it is getting so much criticism. I've come around to the conclusion that it's a decent game.

Pretty much EVERYONE agrees the shooting is good. Even in the Jim Sterling review that TM linked above, Sterling praises the combat. But he quit because the game had bad flow -- you do a fun shooting part, a dungeon or a bandit camp, and then you have to drive around to find something to do next. This is a common complaint. He also got annoyed by the item hunting (it's hard to find all the chests). Reviewers have also criticized overly complicated upgrade systems. Guns, vehicles, player abilities, equipment and more each have their own systems for upgrading them, and it takes a while to figure out. It's not that any system is especially complicated, but there are a lot of them. The last straw for a lot of people is that the vehicles don't control very well, and you are forced to drive vehicles. So, Jim Sterling and other come to the conclusion that Rage 2 isn't worth all of the annoyances that you have to put up with to do the fun shooting parts, and they quit.


Well...I think people have given up on this game too quickly. I've had a lot of fun with it by playing it the "right" way:


  • Use a good controller (like PS4 or XBox), NOT keyboard and mouse. Vehicles will control much better. Understeer is an issue until you learn to use the handbreak, then it's fine. Even shooting is better on a controller. No, you won't be able to rapidly score headshots, but the player's special abilities are easier to use and aiming is just fine.
  • Look around on the map and go for nearby locations that are at a reasonable enemy difficulty and have either ARKs or ARK chests. This will quickly allow you to acquire better guns and abilities. Eventually you will need to accomplish certain tasks to advance the story, but most of these are fun anyway.
  • Do not worry about getting all the pink boxes or other collectible things, just grab the ones you come across and focus on the ark stuff. You will get abilities later in the game that allow you to locate that stuff more easily anyway -- you can always come back later when you have those abilities. Or not -- there are way more resources in the game than you need.
  • Use vehicles as transportation, and just ignore the other shit on the road 90% of the time. If you come across an interesting locale like a bandit camp that you want to shoot up, do so, otherwise proceed to your chosen destination and don't worry about it. Again, vehicles handle reasonably well using a controller, you just need a little patience and learn how to use the handbreak. The phoenix you start with is pretty much the only vehicle you need to use for the whole game.
  • Skip all NPC disalogue unless you really feel like listining to it. Even if it's a major story point and the option to skip doesn't appear on screen, trying pressing the skip button anyway and usually it works. I did end up listening to some of the major plot points when it wasn't too painful to do so.
  • Once you get some abilities, use them a lot. Slam and shatter are a lot of fun to use and flow into gun combat perfectly. The movement in this game is superb, too. You've got double jump, mantling, a fast sprint speed with no stamina bar. You can run and jump all over the place in a bandit camp, outflank enemies, and take them out many different ways. Despite occasional copy-pasting in the sandbox area (I never encountered copypast in dungeons) the combat areas are well designed with great flow.



To sum up, if you have a little patience and aren't expecting it to be Doom 2016, Rage 2 is a pretty good game. There's a lot of good things about the combat that I didn't even mention. Like you can literally blast armor off of enemies when you hit them. They have great stagger animations, too. The sound is great, and there's excellent feedback on whatever you are doing to them.


The worst part of the game? You have to enter and win a race. Just once, though. But yeah, I didn't like that. The race wasn't super hard but I finished 2nd on the first try and had to do it again.
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#33

I will be honest ... IMHO that is all a bit much effort to find the fun in a game (and you haven't even mentioned the forced autoaim).
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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#34

View Postfuegerstef, on 20 May 2019 - 11:32 AM, said:

I will be honest ... IMHO that is all a bit much effort to find the fun in a game (and you haven't even mentioned the forced autoaim).


You mean forced autoaim on vehicles? That's true, but I find it to be a non-issue. That feature is designed for fighting convoys, where you really can't aim the gun and drive at the same time. You don't need to be shooting at regular goons from your vehicle; if there's enough of them around to be worth fighting, just get out of your car. Anyway, as for effort, I think it's more a matter of accepting that there is an open world to traverse. I just got through playing a little session before work, and I was only driving for about 1 minute between each major encounter. I did a dungeon, with three bandit encampments on the way to the dungeon. So I drove for about 4 minutes total and did first person shooting/exploring for about twenty minutes. That seems like a pretty good ratio.

The market is so over-saturated with open world sandbox games right now that gamers are sick of it and I think they are over-reacting to the chores (route planning, crafting) that it creates. In a perfect world, Rage 2 would have been a more linear game without the shitty towns and overly complex resource/upgrade stuff, but it's still pretty good for what it is.
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User is offline   Hank 

#35

Unlike Trooper Dan, my English sucks ...
Rage 2 ist eigentlich sehr gut; eine schöne Überraschung für dieses Jahr. :)
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#36

I will start another attempt tonight ... just without a controller.

Ich starte heute abend nochmal einen Versuch ... nur ohne Controller.

This post has been edited by fuegerstef: 22 May 2019 - 08:05 AM

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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#37

View Postfuegerstef, on 22 May 2019 - 08:03 AM, said:

I will start another attempt tonight ... just without a controller.


The driving will still suck for you then XD. There's supposed to be a day 30 update in June so you might want to wait until then.
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#38

View PostTrooper Dan, on 22 May 2019 - 10:42 AM, said:

The driving will still suck for you then XD. There's supposed to be a day 30 update in June so you might want to wait until then.


OK, ty for the info. Then I am trying to find the fun beneath the snowy surface in Metro Exodus instead. :)
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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#39

View Postfuegerstef, on 22 May 2019 - 11:01 AM, said:

OK, ty for the info. Then I am trying to find the fun beneath the snowy surface in Metro Exodus instead. :)


I tried playing the earlier Metro games and didn't like them much. I didn't like the gas mask mechanic and I found the levels to be too linear. Basically a shooter on rails. Maybe the newest one is better.
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#40

View PostTrooper Dan, on 22 May 2019 - 12:30 PM, said:

I tried playing the earlier Metro games and didn't like them much. I didn't like the gas mask mechanic and I found the levels to be too linear. Basically a shooter on rails. Maybe the newest one is better.


It is definately different (that's why I bought it, as I disliked the original(s) too) ... but ... there isn't much gameplay.

I also rebind most keys in a game, so I start playing a game on easiest mode until I have configured it as I like it and then start over on normal or harder modes (I want a normal game experience from start to end not being interrupted by key reconfiguration). Now I am about two hours in, and have reached the vast open landscape which I really like. But there is next to no gameplay. I still haven't figured out if these few encounters I had is the normal action I encounter in the rest of the game. You have absolutely long cutscenes, followed by a bit of walking to get to the next absolutely long cutscene, followed by a lot of walking, then some boat rowing and a QT event that leads to a short cutscene, followed by some walking and a cutscene.

And right now I just walked some time through the snowy wasteland with no enemy encounter. Then at the end of the several minute walk I shot 3 mutants within 5 seconds ... and then walk some time to a long dialogue-heavy cutscene.

This post has been edited by fuegerstef: 22 May 2019 - 03:58 PM

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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#41

With the amazing rendering and physics technology we have now and all of the resources at their disposal, it's amazing how big developers have such a hard time making good shooters.

If a player purchases a shooter, it's a good bet that they want to shoot things. They didn't purchase the shooter because they want to watch long cutscenes or spend a long time driving around a wasteland with poorly handling vehicles. It seems obvious, but it's apparently a very difficult concept to grasp for many developers.
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User is offline   X-Vector 

#42

Quote

Metro Exodus is an epic, story-driven first person shooter from 4A Games that blends deadly combat and stealth with exploration and survival horror in one of the most immersive game worlds ever created.

https://www.metrothegame.com/en-gb/

Going by that description Metro Exodus' sparse combat is appropriate to its design.
The source material for the Metro games being a series of novels explains the abundance of cutscenes, which to me seems rather problematic especially considering that fuegerstef's write-up doesn't suggest there's much in the way of interactivity.




This post has been edited by X-Vector: 23 May 2019 - 01:05 AM

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#43

View PostX-Vector, on 23 May 2019 - 12:55 AM, said:

https://www.metrothegame.com/en-gb/

Going by that description Metro Exodus' sparse combat is appropriate to its design.
The source material for the Metro games being a series of novels explains the abundance of cutscenes, which to me seems rather problematic especially considering that fuegerstef's write-up doesn't suggest there's much in the way of interactivity.


The environments are cool and seem alive. A lot of mutated creatures around to spice up the atmosphere (which lets the snyowy wastelands feel better than those of Rage 2 (just mentioned it to keep the thread on topic)). But these creatures mostly go by their business (mutated crabs eating some stuff at the puddles and lakes, for example). But they don't attack, and shooting them really didn't have a purpose. First I thought that it might have to do with the easy difficulty I use to set up the game's controls* ... but videos on YouTube showed me that it is basically the same on higher difficulties.
I agree that the games are appropriate to their source material. But Exodus is only "inspired by the novels" and with its wide open areas has nothing to with the Metro anymore (except that you escape them in the beginning), I had hoped for a bit more interactivity and shooting. Honestly, the NPCs make such a huge fuzz about the dangers of the wide open wastelands and then there is less danger than in a small town in the american desert at the main street at 1PM.

EDIT: Another example. I rowed my boat through a flooded church where where some cultists had ther ceremony ... they completely ignored me and my boat rowing through the church and still listened to their leader. Then somehow I found a mother and a kid held hostage by them and there were a lot of bad guys around ... so I thought, cool, some fighting ahead. But I only shot 2 bad guys in the narrow and cramped church before the other 3 raised their hands, laid down the weapons and surrendered (ok, that might be due to the low difficulty ... but still it would have been only 3 more guys). But then ... the woman tells me to get to a boat and escape and my team tells me over headset to come back to the base and that the others on my team will rescure them. WTF. So when I came back to the base the others had rescued them already and got all the fun (and I didn't even see it as I was involved with a QT event as a mutant attacked my boat (Press Enter to defeat it)).
Imagine General Graves tellingl Duke to get out of the stadium and get back to the base as the others from the EDF will take care of the Cycloid Emperor.

EDIT 2:
here is a 36 minute gameplay video I found on yourtube for the church mission i just described.



The "action" starts at 24 minutes after the level started. And the action ends at 26 minutes. All of a 36 minute mission!!!!

*) And it is really necessary as there are a few really weird bugs when it comes to controls. For example: to operate a radio (during a semi-interactive cutscene where I cannot move) I have to use the keys I mapped to strafe left and right, and the onscreen promt also tells me to "press right arrow". But then nothing happens. On the lower left a small icon tells me to press WASD to operate the radio. Ok, so I pressed those keys. Still nothing happened. Some searching on the web revealed that you need to map any random action (like "switch weapons") to the WASD keys for them to work at all (secondary keys aren't possible). And then only those work although the promt still says to press the key you mapped to movement. So, when I look at that coding (I am coder myself) I think it might be for the best they didn't put more interactivity in it. :P

This post has been edited by fuegerstef: 23 May 2019 - 02:31 AM

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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#44

As I said, I don't think that Rage 2 is a bad game, it's actually pretty decent, but here's how I would make it much better if I could.

Reduce the size of the open world to 50% or even less of its current size, so that all of the cool and important locations are closer together. Get rid of a lot of the empty terrain and little pointless locations that just have a single storage container or some little thing that's just there to waste your time. This means you will always be finding fun locations and are much less likely to miss Arks. Divide the world up into zones where you have to accomplish certain things to get past the gate into the next zone, where the difficulty will ramp up. This will give the player more focus because you know you have to do certain things to get into that next zone. Also, deny the player access to vehicles or make them usable only in certain small areas. This means that the player will be exploring on foot, which is fine because this game actually has very good movement tech and it's fun to sprint, jump and climb around. Importantly, make any point of interest a fast travel point, once that point has been conquered. So now the player is freed from any tedium associated with traveling around (currently there are very few fast travel points), and won't have to deal with badly handling vehicles. The goal would be to give the player that lone explorer feel like in a Fallout game, but also feel like he is conquering the world piece by piece. Make the towns much smaller and get rid of most of the NPCs. We don't need by BS quests like "kill that gang and I'll give you money" -- killing a gang already has rewards, making the player come back to an NPC for more money is just a waste of time. Get rid of about half of the incremental upgrades on everything. Weapons and abilities would still have the same ultimate forms, but there would be fewer intermediary steps. Make the intermediary steps more expensive so the player feels like he is saving up for something really good, instead of constantly getting small upgrades. Don't have venders or vending machines ever sell anything important, like upgrade schematics and nanite upgrades, etc. All that kind of loot should be earned by beating bosses or looting dungeons and chests in the world. It cheapens it if you can buy it from some lame NPC in a town. Finally, allow the player to skip those fucking tutorials that you are forced to play every time you earn a new Ark ability or get a new weapon.
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#45

View PostTrooper Dan, on 23 May 2019 - 02:22 AM, said:

As I said, I don't think that Rage 2 is a bad game, it's actually pretty decent, but here's how I would make it much better if I could.

Reduce the size of the open world to 50% or even less of its current size, so that all of the cool and important locations are closer together. Get rid of a lot of the empty terrain and little pointless locations that just have a single storage container or some little thing that's just there to waste your time. This means you will always be finding fun locations and are much less likely to miss Arks. Divide the world up into zones where you have to accomplish certain things to get past the gate into the next zone, where the difficulty will ramp up. This will give the player more focus because you know you have to do certain things to get into that next zone. Also, deny the player access to vehicles or make them usable only in certain small areas. This means that the player will be exploring on foot, which is fine because this game actually has very good movement tech and it's fun to sprint, jump and climb around. Importantly, make any point of interest a fast travel point, once that point has been conquered. So now the player is freed from any tedium associated with traveling around (currently there are very few fast travel points), and won't have to deal with badly handling vehicles. The goal would be to give the player that lone explorer feel like in a Fallout game, but also feel like he is conquering the world piece by piece. Make the towns much smaller and get rid of most of the NPCs. We don't need by BS quests like "kill that gang and I'll give you money" -- killing a gang already has rewards, making the player come back to an NPC for more money is just a waste of time. Get rid of about half of the incremental upgrades on everything. Weapons and abilities would still have the same ultimate forms, but there would be fewer intermediary steps. Make the intermediary steps more expensive so the player feels like he is saving up for something really good, instead of constantly getting small upgrades. Don't have venders or vending machines ever sell anything important, like upgrade schematics and nanite upgrades, etc. All that kind of loot should be earned by beating bosses or looting dungeons and chests in the world. It cheapens it if you can buy it from some lame NPC in a town. Finally, allow the player to skip those fucking tutorials that you are forced to play every time you earn a new Ark ability or get a new weapon.


Lets' hope they patch in some more fun. :)

I also added a gameplay video for Exodus in my last post, to show how much worse the interactivity in Exodus is.
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User is offline   Hank 

#46

View PostTrooper Dan, on 23 May 2019 - 02:22 AM, said:

Get rid of a lot of the empty terrain and little pointless locations that just have a single storage container or some little thing that's just there to waste your time.

Well, I call this a 'Secret" (Easter Egg?) This is a part I actually like. Just wasting time, roaming/hunting for stuff.
Before you jump on me, I say, even the most perfect game is a waste of time. It does nothing positive for your wallet. It will not feed your kids/wife/what ever.
But if it fills your persona, even a tiny bit, it was worth it. :P
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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#47

View PostHank, on 23 May 2019 - 03:43 PM, said:

Well, I call this a 'Secret" (Easter Egg?) This is a part I actually like. Just wasting time, roaming/hunting for stuff.
Before you jump on me, I say, even the most perfect game is a waste of time. It does nothing positive for your wallet. It will not feed your kids/wife/what ever.
But if it fills your persona, even a tiny bit, it was worth it. :P


Fair enough. The real problem is that there are so few fast travel points. So if I leave a region and then decide to come back later to hit the locations that were too hard or missed earlier for whatever reasons, I have to drive all the way from the nearest town, which might mean driving for a couple of minutes. It adds up -- maybe there are things to do along the way, but maybe not.
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User is online   Trooper Dan 

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#48

When I wrote previously it was based on my first playthrough on normal difficulty. Since then I have replayed the game on hard, and this time I found all of the weapons and player abilities (it's very easy to finish the game while missing many things).

It was pretty fun the second time, but I'm now done with the game until DLC comes out. Further comments:

-Not only do vehicles control decently when using a controller, there is a flying vehicle called the Icarus which you unlock early in the game. I ignored it on my first playthrough, and apparently a lot of other people do too based on the criticisms I have read. It's fast, easy to control and allows you to fly over difficult terrain, enabling the player to avoid travel delays in most cases. With all of the unnecessary ability/weapon tutorials that this game forces you to endure, they probably should have forced the player to try this vehicle out, since it would have prevented a lot of criticism.

-While some of the weapons are excellent, some are novelty weapons that you won't really use. There's the firestorm revolver where primary fire embeds flammable bullets in enemies, and altfire causes them to ignite. But the flames don't do enough damage to compensate for the extra time and effort required to use it. There's another gun where primary fire embeds gravity darts in enemies, and altfire causes the enemies to get pulled towards where you are aiming, so you can slam them into walls etc. But I feel like this has been done better in other games, and it's not worth the extra effort required to use it. Plus it doesn't work on bosses which would have been the one really fun use for it. Finally there's the settler pistol which is a pre-order weapon and you can't upgrade it so it's useless shortly after you get it. All the other weapons are good, though.

-Likewise with player abilities, there are a couple of duds. The barrier ability where you summon a barrier that blocks bullets is a joke. It runs contrary to all the other gameplay mechanics which require you to mix it up with enemies in fast paced combat. Also, you can't even fire your own shots through the barrier. The vortex power is better, but basically it's a ranged attack which you have to aim and it isn't better than most of your guns. You are better off just not using it. Shatter and slam are excellent, though, because they provide up-close offense while simultaneously providing defense (with invincibility frames and by staggering and knocking back nearby enemies). The movement tech abilities are also good.

-The end of the game is lackluster. It's not terrible, but there's a very predictable final level and by-the-numbers boss fight.

All in all, I still think Rage 2 is a decent game.
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#49

Thanks for the tipps. I used the wait for a possible patch to replay Rage 1 (well, I have had played it only to the first stuff in Wellspring before).
This time I played almost every mission and every job until Subway City, when the whole Wellspring-setting is repeated (just a little darker) and gave up (i.e.: watched the "ending" on YouTube). ;)

Will restart Rage 2 tommorow and hope it keeps me entertained until the next shooters of 2019 appear (a lot of stuff going on with the Black Mesa files that point to the public beta coming soon).

This post has been edited by fuegerstef: 29 May 2019 - 03:29 AM

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