hungryhipos59 Feb 27 @ 5:01am
A Not So Angry Letter to 'Chinese Room'
I refer to the interview of Dan Pinchbeck on gamesindustry.biz. "Master Of Horror: Dan Pinchbeck"

Quote:
“The hate mail we got made Amnesia: A Machine For Pigs look like Sesame Street”

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2014-02-27-master-of-horror-dan-pinchbeck

I will only talk about this as a fan of both frictional games and the Chinese Room games.

I begin by saying Thank You, Chinese Room and Frictional Games for another great horror game/walking simulator. It is hard to find something that stands out in an ever increasing market, between all the horror shooters and other indie survival horror games. It's refreshing to get something that is completely different.

While it was still better than anything else at the time and probably still is until some other highly anticipated survival horror games get released like Aliens: Isolation. It was never going to be better than the first Amnesia, you got that right? You read your hate mail. You know what you did wrong. You understand now that you had taken on something that is in a league of its own, "you got too close to the sun and got your throat cut".

Not to say your game didn't have the high amount of Quality Assurance done to it, by far. Or it hadn't had a fantastic composer it should of have, no it did well........in that regard.

Nor am i suggesting me or someone else thinks they know better to make a sequel to Amnesia, i doubt even fictional games will ever top it...who knows. I guess deep down the reason they didn't just do it themselves is they didn't want to take on that terrible burden of going one better, easier to just finance someone we can trust to replicate it and if there is hate towards it, we'll be too focused on soma our next release.

Frictional Games really only real mistake was never really taking an interest in user data monitoring, high and low statistical graphs for what they did and didn’t like, what they found the most frightening (brutes) what didn't they find to be frightening (pig mutates), statistical data like that doesn't lie. Granted you need volunteers for the most part to help with input of heart beats tracking which is still something that isn't available.

If you knew what do now you wouldn't of made a machine for pigs the way you did. Removing like 80% of the content out of the game I guess, is just your style Chinese Room. I doubt a FPS game would be good at this point.

It was wrong to take out the inventory mechanic, along with all the pieces. Why? because it was soo damm sucessful last time, removing it this time will break it. The sanity meter, health, lantern oil/equivalent, notes, memories and dairy. That was all largely the centre of Amnesia all of that worked extremely well for Dark Descent, kept the story on track and kept you focused to what is going on around you at all times, that is a survival horror game where you’re in a living nightmare where the stress of getting through the next 20 minutes was to be enjoyed, the slow build sense of dread and knowing deep down you cannot escape. It gave the player alot to worry about, like with the oil and tinderboxes being used up to light your way.

I'll go on about why it really worked, like the composed music and the voice acting and in-depth story (both internally and externally) as remember it came with five tied in short stories!, what ♥♥♥♥ing game does that? it was unbelievably great all working together to keep you terrified. I got to hand it to the writers at Frictional Games, one the best stories I’ve ever read.

A machine for pigs, meh whatever....did not feel as great as the previous and it wasn't, how could it be? it has less than half the content of the previous..but it is was still greater than anything else.

Which is a shame as all i can think of is just think of how much better it could have been. Your game clearly lacked that content, apart from what you did do composed music etc. Aside from your fright moments, of the ghost children and the mutant pigs/man? It just wasn't all that crazy, the ghosts didn't bother me as they didn't for a moment seem to want to harm you......ok to explain what went wrong there, can be best quoted from someone I know who said about the Amnesia A Dark Descent, baby snake bath in the back hall.

Refers to the enemies found in the game
"The thing that scares me the most, is the thing i cannot identify and defeat"

Or this quote from a film, which he used refer to the games story
"Quite an experience to live in fear, isn't it? That's what it is to be a slave."


The enemies in dark descent were at least for a while until you go looking for internet answers on wiki etc. They were hard to make out, after the first few glances they had clearly been tortured, "boiled then flayed". Making them extremely disfigured and the odd snarls they can make you imagine what does it looks like of that i just heard.

They obviously intended to harm you and were patrolling and will chase you. Your game didn't contend with torture into the story etc, why not? Something had to put those pig/human mutants together.

There’s literally too much content that was cut from your game/version to go over but that some to consider.

The story obivously wasn't something to feel pity for the main character, he was a bad man. To be fair there wasn't much of anything of characters with voice acting to keep you in tuned with the story and game, dark descent dealt with multiple characters, at least 3 voice actors, more actually. I still to this day cannot recall all the characters; it did play like a novel. Heavily involved in alchemy with much more content, god dam I love that game!

Your game, had hardly anything and it all felt a bit too much like it was not working. Which left the player disengaged with what was appening; I got bored early on and decided to stake 20-30 chairs in the dining room.

If you had tight resources reasons, fair enough. But like your promise to bring "Everybodys gone to the rapture" to pc at first but then alot later say its now a console exclusive, leading us on to believe prior to that announcement it was still meant for pc. Puts you on the wrong side of consumers, they want you to be honest. So don't lead us on to believe your release of whatever that was to be a amnesia game. It was more just your take on it and not really anything like the last. For which you should of just named it;

Amnesia: A shortfall of Content

Am not happy with both developers as a result, amnesia dark descent was great. They could of released another tied into the first, had it be more of that. It would of worked. You don't see call of duty do extremely well with each release because they completely change the game each time, no they just tweak it and keep on tweaking it. Consumers want to be entertained with classic coke not some, off brand.

I think its fair to say Chinese Room your the running joke of survival/horror as you got none.

To sum it up, i suppose this was another great Amnesia game/story but from the English point of view. Not the same. Never going to be,but you would have gotten close.

"you got too close to the sun and got your throat cut".




Regards


Fan






Last edited by hungryhipos59; Feb 27 @ 8:04am
Showing 1-5 of 5 comments
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555-KEBAB Mar 3 @ 3:06pm 
It's a shame that this post doesn't get more attention. I found this pretty interesting to read, as I just finished this game and found it really disapointing.
The lack of potentional enemies (90% were scripted to just run past you), introducing the main threat (Manpigs) way too early, linear gameplay (In A:TDD you could take some offroads), Lack of Oil bar, Sanity etc etc. They obviously tried to focus more on the story this time around, which was pretty interesting, but the game was too short to really make an impact.
illgib Mar 4 @ 9:12am 
Originally posted by Sweet Baby Chains:
In A:TDD you could take some offroads
Where? We have might played two different games, because The Dark Descent is linear to death too.
Last edited by illgib; Mar 4 @ 9:12am
Moshi ~ Mar 4 @ 7:16pm 
Originally posted by illgib:
Originally posted by Sweet Baby Chains:
In A:TDD you could take some offroads
Where? We have might played two different games, because The Dark Descent is linear to death too.

Umm no not really, you can explore multiple lore filled rooms.
illgib Mar 5 @ 3:30pm 
Originally posted by Moshi Moshi~:
Originally posted by illgib:
Where? We have might played two different games, because The Dark Descent is linear to death too.

Umm no not really, you can explore multiple lore filled rooms.
You said that you can take different routes, were? the only places that came in my mind it's the Cistrn were you can decide to go in the Mourge or in the Elevator control room, but doesn't change a thing.
Exploring rooms it's not "taking offroads"
pannicatack Mar 14 @ 3:00pm 
Originally posted by Sweet Baby Chains:
The lack of potentional enemies (90% were scripted to just run past you)
I really do not understand this complaint. Almost every single enemy encounter in the first game was completely scripted, where they'd show up when you triggered them, and then you'd just hide in a corner for twenty seconds before they despawned.

At least in AMfP, the enemies are actually persistent and you have to make a note of their movement patterns and sneak past them.
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