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Author Topic: The immersion factor  (Read 1366 times)
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RaptorRed
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« on: March 03, 2005, 01:55:49 AM »

know that one of the aspects of computer games that seems to score high with all of us is the degree of immersion.
This is important because it seems to sum up what constitutes a good game.

A game is no better than the sum of all its parts.
How many times have you played a game only to say if they had only done this then it would have been perfect?
How many times does one single aspect of a game annoy you to the point of distraction?
It could be a lousy interface, a bad story or the inability to save anywhere.
I am not saying that these game aren't worth playing, just lack of immersion suffers to degrees.

A few games get it right and we forget we are in front of a monitor, some books work the same way.

Now to the question.

I know everyone reacts differently to games based on their own experiences, that said, what games do you feel were the most immersive you have ever played?

Also if you were offered a state of the art virtual reality system or a state of the art computer station which would you choose?

One you can wear and move around to translate body movements to the game world , the other a fixed station with all the bells and whistles?
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« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2005, 02:09:32 AM »

Some quickies for me would be Half-Life 1, Deus Ex 1, System Shock 2 and Thief: the Dark Project.
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zinckiwi
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« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2005, 02:37:33 AM »

Ditto Deus Ex, SS2 and the Thiefs (Thieves?).

Add to that Privateer, Hardwar, and the king of immersion -- EQ.

VR is overrated. I want to sit in a comfy chair, not jump around tripping over sensor wires.
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Daehawk
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« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2005, 02:47:48 AM »

System Shock 1
Thief 3
Star Control 2
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Driver
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« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2005, 03:55:27 AM »

Recently:
Deus Ex 2
Full Spectrum Warrior
Silent Hill 2
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WestNile
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« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2005, 08:07:48 AM »

Off the top of my head:

Return to Castle Wolfenstein
Deus Ex
Judge Dredd: Dredd Vs Death
Hitman
Hitman 2

All those sucked me in.  I never got to play much of System Shock 2, but what I saw, I liked.

I hated Half-Life.
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Starshifter
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« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2005, 01:40:01 PM »

No game has ever immersed me more (and I'm including emotionally too) than the entire Wing Commander Series, especially the original one.

Even till this day I still think about the moments I had with those games (as clear as if they just happened yesterday).  As a matter of fact (please excuse the forthcoming geekiness) I have not used the callsign that I used in those games for any other game since then because I felt like such a part of that universe that I just had to retire that callsign after it was all over.  Sometimes when I'm in a dreamlike sleep at night I can swear that I actually lived through those adventures against the Kilrathi Empire.

So many memorable characters like Angel, Spirit, Maniac, Hobbes, Colonel Tolwyn, Iceman, the Bartender, Prince Thrakhath and so on.  Oh boy and the ship designs are as memorable as the X-Wing and Colonial Vipers!  I can even remember the music when we got the call to rush to our ships from the meeting room.  Wow, I'm aching for it right now.

No game series since then has pulled me into a game like the Wing Commander Series has done.

Having said all that I would absolute love it if that entire series was redone for the modern age.  But, with Origin dead and Chris Roberts (the creator) gone, it will never happen.  But at least I have the memories...
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skystride
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« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2005, 03:53:31 PM »

Everquest.

It was my first mmrpg.  Logging into Kelethin, the wood elf city on top of the forest and seeing all the people milling around like it was a living breathing city was a very immersive experience.  I remember camping bandits in Lesser Faydwer forest, looming trees all around me, giant spiders in the periphery.  And then it starts to rain, my sub woofers booming with the crackle of lightning.  It was everything I wanted a  MUD to be fully realized in pretty decent graphics for the time.  MMRPGs since then haven't been able to create that "first time" excitement again.  I haven't seen a good implementation of first person perspective in mmrpgs after EQ.  For some reason, they all default to 3rd person which to me makes it lose a level of immersion only possible in first person perspective.  Daggerfall/Morrowind were good examples of doing first person well.

As for VR, I don't think the technology is there yet.  We're not even at the level of Lawnmower Man yet.
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Scuba-V
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« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2005, 04:25:12 PM »

VR might be closer than you think.

http://gprime.net/video.php/totalimmersion
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AttAdude
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« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2005, 04:55:35 PM »

Everquest.  In the begining it was the single most awe inspiring moments of my gaming life.   Later that was not true, but i remember exploring with my gnome in the begining, and doing it with my mouth hanging open the whole time.  That game was really amazing in the begining.

Other games would be SS2 any Thief esp the cathedral or Shalebridge cradle.  Doom3 during the first few levels, the original HL all the way to Xeen.  Ohhh and of course COD esp the american campaigns.
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« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2005, 05:32:12 PM »

Quote from: "Scuba-V"
VR might be closer than you think.

http://gprime.net/video.php/totalimmersion


 :shock: !!!!!

This is a trick right?  Camera trickery?  Special effects?  It can't be real!
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skystride
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« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2005, 06:33:22 PM »

Quote from: "Stardrifter"
Quote from: "Scuba-V"
VR might be closer than you think.

http://gprime.net/video.php/totalimmersion


 :shock: !!!!!

This is a trick right?  Camera trickery?  Special effects?  It can't be real!


That would be my guess too.  I don't think holographic technology is anywhere close to what they showed.
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disarm
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« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2005, 09:10:57 PM »

Quote from: "skystride"
Quote from: "Stardrifter"
Quote from: "Scuba-V"
VR might be closer than you think.

http://gprime.net/video.php/totalimmersion


 :shock: !!!!!

This is a trick right?  Camera trickery?  Special effects?  It can't be real!


That would be my guess too.  I don't think holographic technology is anywhere close to what they showed.

it's not holographic technology at all...closer to camera trickery in some ways.  the guy explains in the beginning of the video that what you are seeing is an animated image superimposed on real-time video.  those objects are only visible to someone viewing a video feed in which the real-time video and rendered images are composited together...they aren't actually seen by anyone unless they're watching on-screen video.  the thing that makes their technology is the interaction between the CG elements and real-world objects...for example, the little Hummer maintains it's position as the camera moves, and appears to interact appropriately with elements of the environment even with the mobile camera.  it's interesting technology, but it's not a hologram.
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whiteboyskim
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« Reply #13 on: March 04, 2005, 09:18:33 PM »

If they had holodeck technology, then hell yeah I would take that. biggrin

As for immersive games, the granddaddy for me is Half-Life 2. I was sucked into it right from the beginning, but it was fighting side by side with my other freedom fighters against the striders that really blew me away. I was feeling so many emotions towards the men and women who were dying next to me that it was painful to watch.

Another would be Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time. Flawlessly immersive, even more so by its half-assed sequel. Brilliant characters, a gorgeous world that evoked 1001 Arabian Nights, excellent music and characters that felt real, this was a game to simply fall in love with. That the story was stunningly tight complete with the perfect ending made this a game I play to remind myself just what video games are capable of accomplishing.
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