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Preview Divinity: Original Sin Previews at RPS and Jeuxvideo

Discussion in 'RPG News & Content' started by Crooked Bee, Mar 29, 2013.

  1. Crooked Bee wide-wandering bee Patron

    Crooked Bee
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    Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire MCA Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
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    Tags: Divinity: Original Sin; Larian Studios

    While we are all patiently waiting for Gragt to write up the official Codex Divinity: Original Sin story, here's an excerpt of a preview for Larian's upcoming turn-based RPG (currently on Kickstarter with around $150,000 collected) penned by Rock Paper Shotgun:

    If you’re spotted in the act of committing a crime, the owner of the stall will react, but not always with a ready-built line of dialogue. More often than not, he’ll simply follow his programming and shout for help to fetch some guards, who will then follow their programming and chase the player, who will then either fight, flee or surrender. Events cascade and it’s to Larian’s credit that they allowed me to saunter out of the controlled paths of the planned preview and play with what interest me most – the cogs and gears that run the machine. I want to explore the sharp edges of the world.

    And that’s why I ended up leading a group of monsters into the marketplace, watching the vendors flee in terror even as the guards drew their weapons and prepared to fight. I look forward to advancing my character, building a personality and gathering loot when I play the game in the discomfort of my home, but on that day I was more interested in seeing just how much Original Sin’s world would stretch and engage with my efforts to play. I wasn’t disappointed. Original Sin may have clever co-op conversations and a huge open world but it’s also a game that has been built to be broken.

    Rather than providing specific stage directions for every eventuality, Larian tag and code their world and its inhabitants, instructing every element how to react to the players’ presence and actions. That’s why it’s not only possible to ignore the main quest and head into the wilds, it’s also possible to involve NPCs in your own subplots, simply by having the systems that drive them collide and intertwine. The reactions to the situations you concoct may be less perfectly executed than a cutscene containing a motion captured and fully-voiced argument involving Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart, but Robert Zemeckis will be bringing that to the cinema in his take on Don Quixote (Stewart is the windmill). Original Sin isn’t about perfect execution, it’s about a world that reacts, providing all manner of possibilities, from tactical use of artificial behaviour to accidental farce and disaster.​

    There's also the French preview at Jeuxvideo.com that Hobz has been kind enough to translate for us. I will post the translation in full in the first comment to this article, but here's a snippet:

    The last time we talked about the interactivity of the world, where almost everything can be picked up, processed, etc.. Here are some other examples. You can take a branch and plant nails into it to get a mace you didn't pay a dime for. You can cut a piece of wood and enchant it with the proper powder to make a voodoo doll. You can make it rain on a boat in flames to extinguish the fire. As for NPCs, they react to different events without script, they only obey the various rules that govern the world. In this demo, this has led to some ludicrous situations ... But we much prefer this sandbox side, where everything is based on the principle of action - reaction, rather than a static universe where the characters follow a predefined behavior regardless of what happens around them. Developers themselves were sometimes surprised by the consequences of our actions. It produced things that were not necessarily planned, but the various elements of the game were only acting according to the rules! As long as these rules are well built, it promises us a world that is both dynamic and consistent.

    Our exploration was obviously not confined to it, because the call to arms was quickly felt! The duo finally ventured out of the village in hostile lands. Monsters (undead) there were stronger than us, but whatever: by adopting the right tactics, it was still possible to get rid of them. Because the turn-based system of Original Sin is eminently tactics, care must be taken to carefully spend each PA. You might want to change weapons depending on the enemy, some being more susceptible to piercing damage other to crusching damage. You have to combine the basic magic, throwing a flash in a puddle for example, while avoiding friendly fire ... The notion of flanking is important because it lowers the defense of an opponent surrounded by your team, which can take up to six members (two heroes, two mercenaries and two summoned creatures). All this seemed very effective. It might be a bit repetitive in the long run, but this version offered only relatively few skills to use. The final game should vary enough to count the possibilities (and fun) to infinity.​

    Thanks Hobz!
     
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  2. Crooked Bee wide-wandering bee Patron

    Crooked Bee
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    Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire MCA Serpent in the Staglands Dead State Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Wasteland 2 Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2 BattleTech Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Jeuxvideo preview, translated by Hobz:

    Last year, our first glimpse of the next Divinity concluded in these terms: "we can't wait to taste for ourselves the original sin." This is now done since we were able to engage in a long collaborative session at Larian's. But instead of appeasing our lust, this test has only fueled our impatience ...

    With its turn-based combat, its system of cooperative dialogues and screenplay as a prelude to the Divinity Saga, Original Sin already seduced us in 2012. For this presentation, the Larian's small team has worked tirelessly to achieve the vision of Swen Vincke, Larian's boss and his sidekick David Walgrave, the game's producerand. Although long months of development seperate us from the expected release in late 2013, the studio has already delivered a playable version on which we could throw our greedy hands. Here is the story of this session.

    Our adventure began on a beach. I was playing the female protagonist, while a colleague controlled her male companion. Remember that if the game requires this pair of characters, we remain free to determine their orientation by drawing in the skills of our choice (no predefined class, as usual at Larian). Our fine team opted for complementarity: archery and magic water for me, melee weapons and fire spells for him. A ride in the character sheet has allowed us to distribute some characteristic points. There are six of them, instead of the four we had seen previously. Apart from the classic Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence and Constitution, we now have Speed and Perception. The first determines the number of action points (AP) available, the second affects chance to hit and initiative. The game only gives you one characteristic and one skill points per level, so you'll have to carefully distribute those points; developers expect characters to hit level 20 by the end of the adventure. It will still be possible to increase our skills by laying a hand on valuable parchments for example. To conclude this section dedicated to the game mechanics, note that there are also "social stats" such as faith / skepticism, Compassion / Contempt, etc.. They evolve in the background based on player's decisions. It is they who determine who wins in the event of disagreement between the players.

    Because disagreements there will be, that is what makes the salt of this new Divinity! Back to our beach. Our duo falls on a shell capable of speech ... Stuck in the rocks, he asked to be released into the sea.Dialogue engages : I want to keep the shell to sell or consume it, my friend wants to accede to the request of the unfortunate mollusc. This unique system is one of the highlights of the game While cooperative RPG are usually based on a group leader who makes decisions alone, Original Sin gives voice to everyone. After some discussion, my companion eventually succeed and rejects the shell to the sea, which has earned us a great reward! Here we find the "Larian spirit" well known to fans of the Divinity saga . The rest is up to the rider. Thus we find a corpse at the foot of the cliff, a note indicates that the guy jumpedbecause a statue told him he could fly ... On the port, an orca was enamored of a guard under the effect of a potion ... In the hostel, a cat asks us to intercede with her sweet, etc.. Yes, you can talk to animals, it is the privilege of the "source hunters", the caste that tracks users of magic source, banned as too dangerous for the balance of the world. Our heros, however, have a little in them that is worth their assigned duties by Xandalor: they must find a way to unfreeze the Council, the governing body over all Rivellon.

    We have obviously not gone that far, but nevertheless this session allowed us to uncover some additional aspects of gameplay. The last time we talked about the interactivity of the world, where almost everything can be picked up, processed, etc.. Here are some other examples. You can take a branch and plant nails into it to get a mace you didn't pay a dime for. You can cut a piece of wood and enchant it with the proper powder to make a voodoo doll. You can make it rain on a boat in flames to extinguish the fire. As for NPCs, they react to different events without script, they only obey the various rules that govern the world. In this demo, this has led to some ludicrous situations ... But we much prefer this sandbox side, where everything is based on the principle of action - reaction, rather than a static universe where the characters follow a predefined behavior regardless of what happens around them. Developers themselves were sometimes surprised by the consequences of our actions. It produced things that were not necessarily planned, but the various elements of the game were only acting according to the rules! As long as these rules are well built, it promises us a world that is both dynamic and consistent.

    Our exploration was obviously not confined to it, because the call to arms was quickly felt! The duo finally ventured out of the village in hostile lands. Monsters (undead) there were stronger than us, but whatever : by adopting the right tactics, it was still possible to get rid of them. Because the turn-based system of Original Sin is eminently tactics, care must be taken to carefully spend each PA. You might want to change weapons depending on the enemy, some being more susceptible to piercing damage other to crusching damage. You have to combine the basic magic, throwing a flash in a puddle for example, while avoiding friendly fire ... The notion of flanking is important because it lowers the defense of an opponent surrounded by your team, which can take up to six members (two heroes, two mercenaries and two summoned creatures). All this seemed very effective. It might be a bit repetitive in the long run, but this version offered only relatively few skills to use. The final game should vary enough to count the possibilities (and fun) to infinity.

    Finally, Larian reserved us a little surprise: the unveiling of a Kickstarter campaign! Yes, you read that right: Original Sin will appeal to participatory financing. An announcement astonishing given the progress of the project, this choice deserves some clarification. Do not worry, the project is not in vital need of money: its current budget will allow developers to finish the game whatever happens, even if it does not glean any additional dollar. But the studio would still improve it's baby with three major development in mind. First, densify the world, adding quests, NPCs, etc.. As stated by Swen Vincke, games are generally less dense over the end. He wants to avoid this pitfall. Second, it would add a story and a personality to the mercenaries that can be recruited instead of leaving them in anonymity which. Finally, Larian would incorporate some ideas from the community. All this without delaying the game, ie by hiring a few more arms. According to Swen, this extra budget could make all the difference, turning Divinity: Original Sin in a game of legend instead of a "just good" RPG. We hope that his wish is granted!
     
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  3. clemens Arbiter Patron

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    Codex 2014 Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
    From Dagon's Lair, there's also a 50min interview with Swen, in french, but subtitled in english.

     
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  4. Niektory one of some Patron

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    47:00 :troll:
     
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  5. clemens Arbiter Patron

    clemens
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    Codex 2014 Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
    That's not a bad definition...

    :bro: Swen !
     
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  6. MicoSelva Prestigious Gentleman Monstroterratum Furiosum Patron

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    Codex 2012 Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Divinity: Original Sin 2 Bubbles In Memoria A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
  7. Jaesun Fabulous Moderator Patron

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    Gragt already finished his interview with Larian. He is still working on his article.
     
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  8. MicoSelva Prestigious Gentleman Monstroterratum Furiosum Patron

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    Codex 2012 Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Divinity: Original Sin 2 Bubbles In Memoria A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    Must have been a translation error in the captions. Thanks.
     
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  9. Sceptic Prestigious Gentleman Arcane Patron

    Sceptic
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    Divinity: Original Sin
    JeuxVideo are truly the last bastion of sanity when it comes to gaming journalism. They neatly balance talks of mechanics, description of encounters, goals of the development team as they were told during their visit, and their own personal opinion and expectations. I like. Especially compared to the RPS preview, twice as long and converying a fraction of the information.

    Of course Gragt's preview will trump all.
     
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  10. Syl Savant

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    Crooked Bee The exact name of the site is Jeuxvideo.com (with or without the capital letter). "Jeux vidéo" is a common noun that means "video games". Jeuxvideo.fr also exists and is a different entity. Sorry to nitpick :(

    Hobz Come in here so we can properly brofist you! :bro:
     
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  11. Hobz Savant

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    Divinity: Original Sin Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
    What's funny is that jeuxvideo.com is the most mainstream gaming journalism site in France, and its comments section can easily rival youtube in retardness level. Turns out they have at least on true bro in the staff though.

    :oops:
     
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  12. clemens Arbiter Patron

    clemens
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    Codex 2014 Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
    Yeah, it's really a popamole site, but their rpg writers are quite decent. Comments sections, though, are utterly retarded.
     
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  13. Syl Savant

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    His nickname is CptObvious and on his profile he wrote:
    :eek: Is he a codexer?

    Show yourself, Captain Obvious!
     
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  14. Gragt Arcane Patron

    Gragt
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    Fucketh me! :lol:

    I don't think he needed to be afraid of me.
     
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  15. Gwendo Liturgist

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    They have to step up their level design. Having a two story building that, when you enter, has no stairs or any other way to get to the second floor, it's sloppy design (and it didn't look like a second floor was designed). The interior has to match the exterior.
     
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  16. MicoSelva Prestigious Gentleman Monstroterratum Furiosum Patron

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    Codex 2012 Codex 2013 Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Grab the Codex by the pussy Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Divinity: Original Sin 2 Bubbles In Memoria A Beautifully Desolate Campaign Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    According to Dagon's Lair interview, enemies won't drop everything they use/carry, because that would be 'boring'.
    Also, it was funny when Swen talked about being raped in Dragon Commander multiplayer due to less than stellar twich skills. :lol:
     
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