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Season 3 may have been the last

posted by FrankT on - last edited - Viewed by 1.4K users

Well correct me if I'm wrong... but I fear that Season 3 may well have been the last Sam & Max season, and a Season 4 isn't being planned. :( Well how else can we explain the sudden appearance of all the living characters in the finale?! And I'm taking into account the fact that it was made a few years after S2 - maybe it was a comeback special or something! Your thoughts?

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  • @Tora Newton Y. said: It still isn't a fair comparison because comparing an Episode 1 and an Episode 4 doesn't make sense. 204 PROBABLY has less hotspots than 201 also, though I cannot say for absolute certain since I can't go replay/recount them all right now.
    Hotspots that do become available later or are only available at certain times DO COUNT, so it is 16, not 14. It still counts as a hotspot even if it's easily missed.
    So from your experiment, all we actually know is 201 has more hotspots than 304. But if you think about this is completely expected; 201 is, again, an introductory episode where you're exploring all areas for the first time, while in 304, you're already deep into the story and been exploring for several episodes. So, again, this isn't really a fair comparison.
    I would still say if you REALLY want to attempt to compare properly, count every unique hotspot in the entire episodes of 201 and 301. Or if you're honestly THAT determined to prove this to me, actually count EVERY hotspot in the entirety of Season 2 and TDP. I'm honestly curious to see the results.



    Your logic doesn't make sense, wouldn't an introductory episode have LESS hotspots because it has to ease the player into that style of game? Listen, I've done my statistic gathering, you want to prove me wrong be my guest. I'm willing to bet you can't find a single episode of TDP that has the same as, or more hotspots as any episode from the past two seasons. If you can, and I'll double check any episodes you choose, I'll concede this entire argument.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: It was the ONLY example you could give of a "baseless claim" that I made, and it wasn't even related to what I was actually talking about, which is Sam & Max.
    What I said in regards to the hotspots is when I played Season 2 and TDP, I found more hotspots/easter eggs/optional dialogues in TDP than I did in Season 2. I never said there definitely IS more in TDP, I don't actually know if there is since neither of us have counted all of them in either (yet), just that I found more. There could be tons in Season 2 I missed, and I never denied that possibility.

    If you have been missing a huge number of the hotspots I'd highly advise going though the games again. Most of the best humour is found in clicking unexpected places.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: -Getting stuck in an adventure game is frustrating. Nobody wants to get stuck too often in adventure games, it is like dying in to other video games. It hinders your progress until you overcome it. Saying I "have a bias against getting stuck" is literally the same as saying I "have a bias against dying in every video game that involves dying."

    I refuted this by noting that getting stuck isn't necessarily a bad thing. You compare getting stuck to dying in other video games, if they designed an FPS where foolishness and bad play wasn't punished by player death and you could walk though every level unhindered without really trying it would be a very boring game. When I was a kid I used to play Doom on god mode. A few years ago I decided to try playing the game for real and you have no idea how much better the experience was! An adventure game with overly easy puzzles is like playing doom on god mode, or riding a bike with training wheels, it's good for learning the mechanics of how something works but it's not giving you the whole experience!

    @Tora Newton Y. said: -The hints from the hint system aren't always helpful. I gave the example of the Sam's "hint" referencing the aglets in 303, which was utterly useless in solving that particular puzzle because it calls back a very brief moment that's difficult to remember, and then realize how it's relevant to the current situation. Like I said, by the time I'd gotten to the part of Act 3 where you need to give Sammun-Mak a unique gift, I'd forgotten what an aglet was.

    I'm not quite sure what point you are making here? Every season uses a hint system. Is the answer to dumb down the games so much that we don't need them? Would you prefer the hints be more obvious?

    @Tora Newton Y. said: -The mini-games in Season 1 and 2 are pointless. They contribute nothing to the story or much to the game at all, and could be removed or replaced with regular puzzles with essentially no difference. This is proved by the 201 commentary, where there originally wasn't supposed to be a Boxing Betty mini-game. It was noted by the designers "Here is where we'd have a boxing mini-game if we had time to put one in." They didn't expect they'd have time, they didn't expect to actually have one in there. There is also no reason to do mini-games past the very first time. Examples; the COPS driving challenges after the first time and you get whatever item you need from them, and playing Wack-Da-Ratz in the Office AT ALL during Season 2 never has any point. Decals aren't a reason because they're purely vanity and serve no actual purpose.

    The mini games can be good because they offer a verity to the same old gameplay, the problem is that in season 1 and 2 the majority of the mini games are poorly implemented and lack depth. I say getting rid of them was for the best.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: -Whether or not a puzzle is illogical can often be a very subjective thing, based on the mental process of the player. Some players will not be able to comprehend certain puzzles, others will. Therefore, some players may see Seasons 1&2 as having balanced difficulty while thinking TDP is too easy (you), while another player may see Seasons 1&2 as sometimes being rather difficult but find TDP to be much more balanced (me).

    I'd be OK with it if it just had easier puzzles. The problem for me was more that the puzzle design philosophies were far more patronizing and less intricate. It wasn't so much about solving puzzles, it was more about finding the right psychic power for the situation and letting the game do the rest.

    I really wish you had played BttF because then you could have read Rather Dashing's gameplay analysis and really see how that game is broken by design. That would make it a lot easier to show you how TDP follows some of the same patronizing design philosophies. (Though nowhere near as badly.)

    @Tora Newton Y. said: -Telltale expanding their audience by making their games more accessible is the smart business decision because it brings in more customers, thus leading to the company being more successful. It's a bad idea to cater only to the customers you already have, because then you'll never bring in anyone new to buy your games. The more people buying your games, the more money you make and the more successful company you are. That's common sense.

    New customers are all well and good but not so much when it is to the detriment of the old. Telltale built up a wonderfully loyal consumer base and they seem to be doing the best they can do to tear it down. They could have found a better balance catering to the old and trying to appeal to the new.

    Telltale are doing better then ever, financially. I'll grant you that, but many of the older gamers who supported Telltale though their development are fed up with the company's current offerings.

  • @Woodsyblue said: Your logic doesn't make sense, wouldn't an introductory episode have LESS hotspots because it has to ease the player into that style of game?



    ... PLEASE tell me you're joking, because otherwise that's one of the dumbest things I've ever heard.
    It's the FIRST EPISODE. Do you honestly think there would be LESS in the episode MEANT TO SELL THE ENTIRE GAME? If anything there would be MORE, because the Episode 1 is meant to be impressive and hook the player into the wanting to play, wanting to BUY, the rest of the game. It only makes sense the first episode would go all out.
    I know that Seasons 1 and 2 had provided the option to buy just the first episode and then upgrade to purchase the rest of the season, I believe 301 also had this option at one point, if it never actually did I apologize for my mistake. But either way, the fact we know 201 was sold this way could be a very logical conclusion as to why it has more hotspots. The more expansive the episode is, the more the player would be inclined to buy the rest of the season. It makes sense as a business tactic from Telltale's now outdated model of selling the episodes individually, or selling the first episode as a "trial." 201 may have included excessive hotspots because of this.
    But AGAIN, we have no way of knowing for certain, until someone counts the hotspots in the other episodes.

    @Woodsyblue said: If you have been missing a huge number of the hotspots I'd highly advise going though the games again. Most of the best humour is found in clicking unexpected places.

    I don't think I missed that many. As I said I MAY have missed SOME, but I'm fairly certain I found almost all of them. You seem to think I missed most of them, which I did not.

    @Woodsyblue said: I refuted this by noting that getting stuck isn't necessarily a bad thing. You compare getting stuck to dying in other video games, if they designed an FPS where foolishness and bad play wasn't punished by player death and you could walk though every level unhindered without really trying it would be a very boring game. When I was a kid I used to play Doom on god mode. A few years ago I decided to try playing the game for real and you have no idea how much better the experience was! An adventure game with overly easy puzzles is like playing doom on god mode, or riding a bike with training wheels, it's good for learning the mechanics of how something works but it's not giving you the whole experience!

    There's a difference between dying occasionally as part of the learning curve or as punishment for just playing badly, where you'll gradually build your skills and then die less over time... and games considered "Nintendo Hard" where you die absurdly often just because the game is THAT difficult. And THAT is what's frustrating. Go play I Wanna Be The Guy or one of the Touhou Project shmups and tell me they don't make you want to rage quit.
    Of course, this can also be subjective. There are some people who are REALLY GOOD at Touhou. It doesn't change the fact MOST people consider these games to be RIDICULOUSLY difficult. And even the people who ARE good at Touhou usually still consider it fairly challenging!
    But my point is that fair deaths and overly excessive deaths are not the same thing. Therefore, challenging puzzles in an adventure game where you have to stop and really think are different from puzzles that are just unfathomable.

    @Woodsyblue said: I'm not quite sure what point you are making here? Every season uses a hint system. Is the answer to dumb down the games so much that we don't need them? Would you prefer the hints be more obvious?

    The point I was making is the hints ARE NOT ALWAYS HELPFUL so they cannot always be relied to get everyone through the game. The answer isn't dumbing down anything, it's MAKING BETTER HINTS.
    "I'd give the Pharaoh an aglet, but he had them all destroyed." is not a very good hint, because like I said, I couldn't connect the dots because I'd forgotten what an aglet was by that point. A better hint would be...
    "The Pharaoh is pretty whimsical. Sometimes he loves things that he hated just a few minutes ago. Too bad he orders everything he hates to be destroyed."
    THAT is a better hint because it doesn't reference anything that can easily escape the player's mind. It's also not TOO obvious - from that statement you can think about the fact when Sammun-Mak says he hates something, that something is completely destroyed. But then you think, 'What if he changed his mind, and now loves that thing he used to hate?' That thing he used to hate no longer existing. So the solution becomes much more clear; make Sammun-Mak hate something, then make him love it again, and then present that thing to him as a unique gift.

    @Woodsyblue said: The mini games can be good because they offer a verity to the same old gameplay, the problem is that in season 1 and 2 the majority of the mini games are poorly implemented and lack depth. I say getting rid of them was for the best.

    Agreed, partially. In certain games, mini-games can add variety. But yes, the problem with the mini-games in Seasons 1&2 is they were not well implemented, were not really that fun, and never had much of a point at all. So yes, removing them completely was an improvement.

    @Woodsyblue said: I'd be OK with it if it just had easier puzzles. The problem for me was more that the puzzle design philosophies were far more patronizing and less intricate. It wasn't so much about solving puzzles, it was more about finding the right psychic power for the situation and letting the game do the rest.

    ... But that IS a puzzle! Being presented with a problem or obstacle and then figuring out what psychic power you need to use in order to progress past it IS THE PUZZLE.
    And at its core, it is the EXACT SAME CONCEPT as the puzzles in Seasons 1&2, except with psychic powers instead of items. What do you do to solve puzzles in Seasons 1&2? Figure out what item you need to obtain or to use in order to progress past the problem or obstacle you're presented with.
    In Seasons 1&2, it's basically "Use this item on this thing or this person to get another item or to unlock a location or to get needed information." TDP also does this, but throws psychic powers into the mix. So it is JUST AS INTRICATE, if not MORESO. An example situation: "I'm presented with a problem and I can't progress. There's a guy who can tell me where to get an item that may be helpful I need but I need to use a psychic power in order to find him. Once I find him he gives me a clue where to find the item but I need to use another psychic power in order to locate the item. Once I have the item I then need to figure out how to use the item to solve the problem presented and continue."
    You could have the same situation to a similar effect by replacing psychic powers with more items, but just making them psychic powers instead of items doesn't make it less intricate. IT'S THE SAME THING, THEY ARE USED THE SAME WAY. At its core, not much really changes.

    @Woodsyblue said: I really wish you had played BttF because then you could have read Rather Dashing's gameplay analysis and really see how that game is broken by design. That would make it a lot easier to show you how TDP follows some of the same patronizing design philosophies. (Though nowhere near as badly.)

    Then buy me Back to the Future. :P I wanna play the rest, but I currently lack the excess funds to purchase the whole season.
    But Back to the Future STILL has nothing to do with this. We're talking about Sam & Max. Every time you bring up that which is completely irrelevant it just hurts your argument.

    @Woodsyblue said: New customers are all well and good but not so much when it is to the detriment of the old. Telltale built up a wonderfully loyal consumer base and they seem to be doing the best they can do to tear it down. They could have found a better balance catering to the old and trying to appeal to the new.
    Telltale are doing better then ever, financially. I'll grant you that, but many of the older gamers who supported Telltale though their development are fed up with the company's current offerings.

    This is what I meant by your selfish and entitled attitude. You want Telltale to cater to YOU and what YOU WANT specifically just because... what, you bought/played their games before someone else? Big deal, who cares? Your money is as good to Telltale as anyone else who's bought the same games. You aren't any more valuable as a customer than new fans who retroactively buy the older games.
    "Loyalty" is rubbish, especially when the fan that claims to be so "loyal" whines and complains about how "IT'S DIFFERENT SO NOW IT SUCKS AND TELLTARE ARE SELLOUTS." A fan who's TRULY loyal would support them in successful evolution as a company. Something evolving or changing doesn't mean it becomes worse. It just becomes different.
    And I hate to break this to you, but when you say they are "tearing down their previous customer base", you are wrong because you are in the minority. No one else I know thinks Telltale has "sold out" or are "betraying their fans" or that "their games aren't as good anymore." Everyone else I know who plays Telltale games loves TDP, and agree it's the best Sam & Max season, or if they don't agree it's the best Sam & Max season they agree it's just as good as the previous seasons but in a different way. The only thing we maybe dislike currently is that we haven't heard about any new Sam & Max related projects in a while, but that's forgiven since we know they're busy with The Walking Dead, Fables and King's Quest. And while I haven't yet played The Walking Dead, everyone I know who has loves it, and they've all played and loved previous Telltale games as well.
    You don't like Telltale anymore? Don't buy their games. They are changing and evolving as a company FOR THE BETTER and if you don't like it, you can stop buying their products. But complaining about how Telltale isn't doing exactly what you want them to do isn't going to change anything. That's life, so deal with it and don't act so spoiled.

  • @Tora Newton Y.
    But point and click games are not supposed to be easy like you want.
    Part of the fun for me is actually having to think and trying to find the solution to the puzzles.
    They could please everyone if they just added a better hint system and let us "hardcore adventure gamers" turn it off.
    They should just do what they did with Hector series where you could get different levels of hints with last one basically telling you straight out what to do.

    And you should really take up the suggestion about back to the future, because that is where telltale seems to be heading. Gameplay wise it was so dumbed down it seemed like a flash game.

    And I by the way liked walking dead as well, but it just is not a point and click adventure game. It is basically a interactive movie and did a good job at that. That does not mean that they should make every game into a interactive movie.

  • @Tora Newton Y. said: ... PLEASE tell me you're joking, because otherwise that's one of the dumbest things I've ever heard.

    It's the FIRST EPISODE. Do you honestly think there would be LESS in the episode MEANT TO SELL THE ENTIRE GAME? If anything there would be MORE, because the Episode 1 is meant to be impressive and hook the player into the wanting to play, wanting to BUY, the rest of the game. It only makes sense the first episode would go all out.

    I know that Seasons 1 and 2 had provided the option to buy just the first episode and then upgrade to purchase the rest of the season, I believe 301 also had this option at one point, if it never actually did I apologize for my mistake. But either way, the fact we know 201 was sold this way could be a very logical conclusion as to why it has more hotspots. The more expansive the episode is, the more the player would be inclined to buy the rest of the season. It makes sense as a business tactic from Telltale's now outdated model of selling the episodes individually, or selling the first episode as a "trial." 201 may have included excessive hotspots because of this.

    But AGAIN, we have no way of knowing for certain, until someone counts the hotspots in the other episodes.



    If I go through and count the hotspots in 301 and a later episode in one of the first two seasons for comparison with the statistics I've already gathered, and the difference is just as glaring, then will you stop this absurdaty and admit I'm right about this and that maybe I know what I'm talking about when I say things like 'TDP has a lot less hot spots than previous seasons' and that you don't know what you are talking about when you say things like 'I found as many hotspots in TDP than I did in other seasons'?

    I'd be willing to do it just to show you how much of a stubborn idiot you are being about this.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: There's a difference between dying occasionally as part of the learning curve or as punishment for just playing badly, where you'll gradually build your skills and then die less over time... and games considered "Nintendo Hard" where you die absurdly often just because the game is THAT difficult. And THAT is what's frustrating. Go play I Wanna Be The Guy or one of the Touhou Project shmups and tell me they don't make you want to rage quit.

    Of course, this can also be subjective. There are some people who are REALLY GOOD at Touhou. It doesn't change the fact MOST people consider these games to be RIDICULOUSLY difficult. And even the people who ARE good at Touhou usually still consider it fairly challenging!

    But my point is that fair deaths and overly excessive deaths are not the same thing. Therefore, challenging puzzles in an adventure game where you have to stop and really think are different from puzzles that are just unfathomable.

    If you are insinuating that Sam and Max season 1 and 2 are Nintendo Hard then GTFO, there is no hope for you. If you are not than your argument is pointless and wasting both of our time. If you like, I could list ten adventure games off the top of my head that are noticeably harder than season 1 and 2 and yet still not considered anywhere near Nintendo Hard.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: The point I was making is the hints ARE NOT ALWAYS HELPFUL so they cannot always be relied to get everyone through the game. The answer isn't dumbing down anything, it's MAKING BETTER HINTS.

    "I'd give the Pharaoh an aglet, but he had them all destroyed." is not a very good hint, because like I said, I couldn't connect the dots because I'd forgotten what an aglet was by that point. A better hint would be...

    "The Pharaoh is pretty whimsical. Sometimes he loves things that he hated just a few minutes ago. Too bad he orders everything he hates to be destroyed."

    THAT is a better hint because it doesn't reference anything that can easily escape the player's mind. It's also not TOO obvious - from that statement you can think about the fact when Sammun-Mak says he hates something, that something is completely destroyed. But then you think, 'What if he changed his mind, and now loves that thing he used to hate?' That thing he used to hate no longer existing. So the solution becomes much more clear; make Sammun-Mak hate something, then make him love it again, and then present that thing to him as a unique gift.

    We live in a day and age where practically anyone can look up online walkthroughs when they get stuck. The hints are meant to point you in the right direction without outright spoiling the puzzle. TBH I'm not sure what we are arguing here. I think we both agree on what a good hint system should be.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: Agreed, partially. In certain games, mini-games can add variety. But yes, the problem with the mini-games in Seasons 1&2 is they were not well implemented, were not really that fun, and never had much of a point at all. So yes, removing them completely was an improvement.

    For the record, I never said anything to the contrary.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: ... But that IS a puzzle! Being presented with a problem or obstacle and then figuring out what psychic power you need to use in order to progress past it IS THE PUZZLE.

    And at its core, it is the EXACT SAME CONCEPT as the puzzles in Seasons 1&2, except with psychic powers instead of items. What do you do to solve puzzles in Seasons 1&2? Figure out what item you need to obtain or to use in order to progress past the problem or obstacle you're presented with.

    Yes it's a puzzle, but the game that overuses this mechanic is poorly designed because of it, which is what I've been trying to say since the beginning (with questionable success.)

    How easy would an adventure game be if you knew that 90% of the time, to solve a puzzle you just had to use three to five items on your surroundings? Add to that the fact that the contexts make it extremely obvious which toy you should use and where. TDP is less about thinking and more about reading the unsubtle clues the game throws at you.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: "I'm presented with a problem and I can't progress. There's a guy who can tell me where to get an item that may be helpful I need but I need to use a psychic power in order to find him. Once I find him he gives me a clue where to find the item but I need to use another psychic power in order to locate the item. Once I have the item I then need to figure out how to use the item to solve the problem presented and continue."

    This is a wonderful example... of how the puzzles are less intricate. The game has an over reliance on psychic powers, which as you correctly pointed out are the same concept as inventory items, just with a different interface. This, coupled with a noticeable lowering of hotspots (and don't say this point is invalid when I will, at the drop of a hat, happily prove you wrong on this point) leads to a patronisingly easy game.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: Then buy me Back to the Future. :P I wanna play the rest, but I currently lack the excess funds to purchase the whole season.

    But Back to the Future STILL has nothing to do with this. We're talking about Sam & Max. Every time you bring up that which is completely irrelevant it just hurts your argument.

    You know, if they sold individual episodes I actually would!

    @Tora Newton Y. said: A fan who's TRULY loyal would support them in successful evolution as a company. Something evolving or changing doesn't mean it becomes worse. It just becomes different.

    You are not talking about a loyal fan, you are talking about a mindless automaton that takes any crap a company is willing to dish out because they are not able to think for themselves.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: And I hate to break this to you, but when you say they are "tearing down their previous customer base", you are wrong because you are in the minority. No one else I know thinks Telltale has "sold out" or are "betraying their fans" or that "their games aren't as good anymore." Everyone else I know who plays Telltale games loves TDP, and agree it's the best Sam & Max season, or if they don't agree it's the best Sam & Max season they agree it's just as good as the previous seasons but in a different way. The only thing we maybe dislike currently is that we haven't heard about any new Sam & Max related projects in a while, but that's forgiven since we know they're busy with The Walking Dead, Fables and King's Quest. And while I haven't yet played The Walking Dead, everyone I know who has loves it, and they've all played and loved previous Telltale games as well.

    Sorry, but I don't consider 'the people you know' to be a creditable source. I can just as easily turn around and say that the people I know think that the later Telltale games are a waste of time and money (which is true, so you know, not just hypothetical.) If you have statistics that prove I'm in a minority then being them out, otherwise you are just spouting empty words.

    And to be honest this is completely off topic. I've never stated that I have a problem with people liking Telltale, this is supposed to be a discussion comparing the gameplay elements of TDP with other Sam & Max seasons.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: You don't like Telltale anymore? Don't buy their games. They are changing and evolving as a company FOR THE BETTER and if you don't like it, you can stop buying their products.

    Have you played any of their newer games like Jurassic Park or The Walking Dead? If you haven't I'm not sure you can with say with any real authority that the company is changing for the better.

    @Tora Newton Y. said: But complaining about how Telltale isn't doing exactly what you want them to do isn't going to change anything. That's life, so deal with it and don't act so spoiled.

    Sadly, you're probably right, but it's still worth a go. And beside, you wouldn't want me to leave when we are having so much fun here ;)

    @Tora Newton Y. said: @Tora Newton Y.
    But point and click games are not supposed to be easy like you want.
    Part of the fun for me is actually having to think and trying to find the solution to the puzzles.
    They could please everyone if they just added a better hint system and let us "hardcore adventure gamers" turn it off.
    They should just do what they did with Hector series where you could get different levels of hints with last one basically telling you straight out what to do.

    And you should really take up the suggestion about back to the future, because that is where telltale seems to be heading. Gameplay wise it was so dumbed down it seemed like a flash game.

    :)

    @Tora Newton Y. said: And I by the way liked walking dead as well, but it just is not a point and click adventure game. It is basically a interactive movie and did a good job at that. That does not mean that they should make every game into a interactive movie.

    I'll take this as an opportunity to address how I feel about TWD. While the gameplay hasn't improved much from Telltale's latest offerings, it is more playable and interesting. The big problem is, as you say, that it's basically an interactive movie. The choice system does add something to the game though, even if it is only cosmetic. I don't love The Walking Dead, but I don't not like it either.

  • @Woodsyblue said: If you found around as many hotspots in TDP than season 2 then I must seriously question your perception. I know you are saying there aren't more, but you think there are around as many when it is painfully obvious that there is a huge drop off throughout the whole season.
    Fine, I will go though every episode in season 2 and TDP and count the hotspots. I will return here next weekend with my findings. I will do this to prove you have no idea what you are talking about, that you aren't even getting the basic facts right and thus are arguing about these games from a position of ignorance. I'll show you the difference, the big, glaring, indisputable difference that is painfully obvious to anyone who paid attention when playing these games, and I'll prove it with actual statistics.
    And then I expect this debate to die down, because the fact that you are making me go though all this work to prove something so mind-numbingly apparent as this shows that you are so closed-minded to the points that I am trying to make that this entire debate is pointless.



    I might have just been looking harder in TDP. It wasn't "mind-numbingly apparent" to me, since I happened to find more, but again, maybe I just wasn't looking as hard in Season 2. Also, I wasn't talking about only hotspots, I said "hotspots, easter eggs and optional dialogues" which meant all of those combined.
    And I never said my findings were fact. You keep insisting that I'M insisting TDP has more. I'm not, I never have been. I keep saying there is a possibility that you're right and you keep insulting me.
    Isn't ASKING FOR PROOF the OPPOSITE of being closed-minded? Just because I don't agree with you and would like to see some real statistics doesn't mean I don't have any open mind.
    But you're right about this being somewhat pointless. When I said that I found more, you could have just said "Really? 'Cause I found way less in TDP than in Season 2. Maybe there's a whole lot in Season 2 you missed."
    Then I would've been like "Oh, maybe. Next time I'll go through and try to find as many as I can, maybe write how many I find, and then do the same thing with TDP and see which actually has more."
    That... would've avoided all this, really. Seriously. This only started because you were convinced I was pushing an argument that TDP has more hotspots, WHICH I WASN'T. My pointing out the flaws behind some of the comparisons was just that, explaining why I thought those comparisons didn't make sense.
    For the THIRD TIME, if you can prove there's more in Season 2, I will fully and freely admit you were right. Not that I was wrong, because I NEVER claimed there were irrefutably more, but that you were right because YOU claimed that.
    Also, you realize if by chance it turns out there actually are more or about the same in TDP as Season 2, once you count all of them in each episode, you're going to look very silly, right? :P There is still a chance you might be wrong. After all, I might have missed some in Season 2, you might have missed some in TDP. You claim to be very observant about this, and I believe you, but it's still possible.
    But I look forward to finally knowing just how many each season has!

    @Woodsyblue said: It was a typo. If you are bringing this up to somehow bring my writing skills into question I'll have you know that I am in the third year of a Creative Arts degree, a degree which specifically focuses on the art and craft of writing, I'm current maintaining an a-average amongst my subjects and in years past I have been awarded two different $1,000 scholarships during my studies, including, in 2010 Outstanding Student of the Year. Part of why I'm so confident in what I'm saying is that I naturally study and deconstruct things like films and games to see how they work. I've had a lot of experience at it.
    When writing on threads such as these I post heaps of spelling and punctuation errors out of carelessness, but it's not a big deal because, normally, people on the internet don't care. Nor should they!


    ... Did you miss the part about If it was actually a typo, ignore this playfully snarky parentheses?
    I was just kidding around! Flaunting your academia records at a snarky little joke makes it seem like you're pretty insecure. C'mon, you're a Sam & Max fan, you should be used to snarking that isn't meant at all to be taken seriously by now. :P I don't care! Lighten up, this has been a really interesting discussion! That's why I'm still answering even when you seem to be all heated and angry about this. I've had a positive mood about this the entire time.

    @Woodsyblue said: Did you notice that I used the word 'if' when I said said 'if you are insinuating season 1 and 2 are Nintendo Hard GFTO...'? That little 'if' is important, because it is me, trying to convey to you, that I'm not quite sure what you are trying to say.

    I explained what I was trying to say! Twice! You could've just said "I don't understand what you mean by that", then I maybe could've explained it differently.

    @Woodsyblue said: Your logic regarding difficult adventure game puzzles is extremist. The puzzles in the Sam and Max games are not unfathomable. In fact, in all the adventure games I've played in the last 20+ years I've only come across a handful of puzzles that I would consider unfathomable. If you are bad at these games it is not my fault and maybe you shouldn't be playing them if you are so adverse to challenge and getting stuck. TBH, you would love the new Telltale games, there is little to no challenge, the hint systems are thorough and you never get stuck for very long. Plus, the broken by design gameplay means you are constantly making progress in the story. That's what you want, isn't it? All the story, none of the challenge.

    This is all subjective again. You know I'm not the only one that thinks Seasons 1&2 had some difficult puzzles, right? I keep trying to say, what you think might be easy might not be so easy to somebody else, and what you think isn't very hard might be very hard to someone else. People's mental processes work differently. But that doesn't mean a better balance still can't be achieved.
    I'm not adverse to challenge, I never said I was. I never even said I was adverse to getting stuck PERIOD, I said it's not very good when you're getting stuck for too long or too often, because it can really be frustrating and take you out of the game experience.
    And no, "all the story, none of the challenge" is not what I want, nor what I said I want. I like story but I like challenge too. You're seeing this in black and white while I keep trying to emphasize how important the grey is, the grey being a balance between the two.
    Here's what I think makes a good adventure game: A game with a great story and characters with puzzles that aren't too easy, aren't too hard, and provide just the right amount of challenge. But this is more an ideal; a model of perfection that probably can't ever REALLY be accomplished due to differences in the mental processes of players. Still, a designer should attempt to achieve this middle ground to the best of their ability. An adventure game that's more accessible and won't constantly frustrate even those who aren't adventure gaming masters is better than a game that's more expressly designed for those with a lot of experience in the genre, because then you sort of "lock out" that whole other audience... that's pretty much the opinion I've been trying to express from the beginning.
    The best way to probably achieve this, from a design perspective, is to bring in playtesters from both groups - ones who are adventure gaming veterans, and ones who are less experienced with the genre. When the majority of playtesters are happy with the puzzles, this majority being about the same amount of both veterans and less experienced players, that's when you've got the best balance you can most likely achieve.

    @Woodsyblue said: Yes, it does overuse the psychic power mechanic, and it's not absurd to say. When most of the puzzles are solved using the same, limited set of items you have problems.

    TDP isn't 90% psychic powers though. From my recollection, I would say psychic powers make up about 45% of the overall puzzles, puzzles involving regular items about 30%, and dialogue puzzles/other are the last 25%. A lot of these elements combine with each other, also.
    That's just from my memory though, I could be wrong. You can go count them if you like! See how many puzzles involve psychic powers, how many involve regular items, and how many involve dialogue or something else. That'd be the best way to know if they're really overused or not.

    @Woodsyblue said: I did explain why they are not as intricate. When you combine less hotspots with non-discardable items that are repeatedly used the same way your options are naturally more limited. The toys of power function the same as inventory items but repetitive use leads to painfully simple puzzle solutions once you work out the formula. (A process that will be quicker for some then others.)

    Seasons 1&2 has non-discardable items that are used throughout or multiple times an episode too though, like Sam's gun and the DNA sampler from 204. Sam's gun may most often be used in rather unconventional ways, but it's always an application of shooting something. There's different applications of needing to shoot something (put holes in cheese to make swiss cheese) just like there's different applications of how to teleport to phones (to teleport to the other side of the sewer, guide a laser to blast a pile of boxes with a phone inside into a crack in the street). The DNA sampler is used mostly to collect spit samples, but has some unique applications as well, such as collecting a tar cake sample.
    The only "pattern" with the psychic powers is pretty much their core function, which have lots of variants and different applications, just like any other item you use more than once.

    @Woodsyblue said: What do you interact with if not hotspots? What are the puzzles based around if not hotspots. There are characters, sure, and dialogue puzzles, but the bread and butter of adventure game puzzles is finding the right item to use with the right hotspot. You reduce the hotspots, you limit the possibilities of the puzzle solutions, you make the game a hell of a lot easier and simpler. Hotspots have a huge role in puzzle difficulty and puzzle intricacy and if you honestly think otherwise then you are deluding yourself!

    ... I thought you meant optional hotspots. Ones that are there purely as extra gags. Not necessary ones like the character or object needed to solve a puzzle.
    But remember what crfh said about having too many red herrings; it can cause a superfluous amount of overwhelming options that only serve to make things more unnecessarily complicated. More intricate doesn't always mean better, sometimes it's better to be more straightfoward, rather than a ridiculous roundabout that's only an artificial increase to the challenge.

    @Woodsyblue said: Because I'm not going to pay for the whole season when I just want you to look at one or two episodes.

    Because those one or two episodes would make a whole lot of sense if I haven't played the others?????
    I wouldn't be able to properly judge them if I was just thrown into the middle of things and have no idea what's going on. I would guess that's one of the big reasons why Telltale stopped selling the episodes individually. The game doesn't make any sense if you just jump into a random episode, if you're telling a cohesive story episodically.

    @Woodsyblue said: I did not call you a mindless automaton, I said that people who are loyal to something without question are. If Telltale started making harder games again, would you still be loyal to them? Because if you called yourself a truly loyal fan you would be. You haven't called yourself a truly loyal fan so I'll let that one go.

    I consider myself a loyal fan, and I probably would still support them if they started making less accessible games again. I would think it was a terrible business decision and their company may fail because of it, but I would continue to support them in hopes that they don't fail, because I still enjoy their games even if there's ways they could be better.
    I just want them to keep making good games. If they sell more games they'll be able to keep making good games. And Telltale hasn't stopped consistently making good games yet (flukes like Jurassic Park happen sometimes), and I hope they never stop. I'm sorry you don't like their games anymore. But as I've said before, the fact you're trying to ruin these new games for the people that ARE enjoying just because YOU personally don't like them is an awfully cruel and mean thing to do. I don't understand why you'd have satisfaction in spoiling something for someone else.

    @Woodsyblue said: Your reasons there for why you think TDP is a masterpiece are more story related. I'm really just talking about problems with the gameplay. I loved the story of TDP, and I'll also use this as a chance to repeat that I like the game overall, the issues I'm debating are all gameplay related.

    That was just a random example off the top of my head because it's one of my favorites, to be honest. The story IS a big reason why I think TDP is masterpiece, but it's far from the only reason.
    You're right, TDP does have some gameplay issues. I pointed out a notable few, even. But something like less critical hotspots isn't a gameplay issue. Even if it maybe makes things less complicated, that's not a problem. It's just a difference. A puzzle being less complicated doesn't necessarily mean it's less good. It's not an objective issue with the gameplay, it's a subjective one, because you personally don't care for it, while there's nothing fundamentally WRONG with easier puzzles.

    @Woodsyblue said: That doesn't prove anything. Telltale are pulling in more popular franchises, so of course more people are buying these new games. That doesn't mean a higher overall percentage of people playing the games are happy with them.

    Back to the Future:
    Episode I: 74/100
    Episode II: 74/100
    Episode III: 71/100
    Episode IV: 71/100
    Episode V: 75/100

    The Devil's Playhouse:
    Episode 1: 81/100
    Episode 2: 83/100
    Episode 3: 75/100
    Episode 4: 76/100
    Episode 5: 81/100

    The Walking Dead:
    Episode 1: 82/100
    Episode 2: 85/100

    Puzzle Agent: 70/100
    Puzzle Agent 2: 63/100

    Seems about on average, at least 75% of people are happy with them. Maybe Metacritic isn't the most accurate gauge ever, but it's probably a good enough one. I'm not sure what another way would be to take a poll in a practical manner.

    @Woodsyblue said: How can I convince a person that won't even acknowledge a simple truth like the fact that TDP has laughably fewer hotspots than previous seasons without going through every episode and physically counting them, that I know what I'm talking about? My arguments are not making sense to you because you disregard what I say out of hand because you don't like what I'm saying. I'll admit I could articulate them better, but that doesn't mean I'm wrong.

    You can convince me with actual proof instead of "THERE'S LESS HOTSPOTS BECAUSE I SAY SO." You just want me to take your word for it. That's a bit of an egotistical attitude. I prefer facts to the claims of someone who's just utterly convinced they're right without the hard evidence to prove it yet. And as I keep saying, if you're right, I'll admit you're right. Easy as that.
    And I'm not disregarding you. I've responded to every single thing you've said, with logical explanations for my disagreements. Meanwhile you've been ignoring A LOT of what I've said, and also occasionally been rather rude. This is an impersonal discussion, or at least it's been from my end. Saying "That's a selfish opinion because (insert explanation here)" isn't a personal affront. Debates are about pointing out that type of thing. It's not rude as long as no one's slinging insults, which I haven't been.

    @Woodsyblue said: Your friend is laughably wrong about The Walking Dead if that's what he thinks. But do you really want to get dragged into another discussion about a game you haven't played yet?

    Well, I'll play The Walking Dead for myself someday. But you're right, I can't really speak much about it right now.
    You were the one who brought up games other then TDP into this anyway, when we were really just supposed to be talking about how TDP is different from Seasons 1&2, not how TDP is like other non-Sam & Max Telltale games.

  • Apologies for the double post, but...

    Woodsyblue, before you post again most likely continuing to fight me, I want to put a stop to this right now.
    This has reached a dead end. No matter what, I know I'm not going to get you to listen to what I have to say, so I don't want to waste any more time on this.

    From the very first moment, it seems like you've been trying to make me look like an idiot just for liking newer Telltale games, and liking TDP more than Seasons 1&2. I felt that was really rude, and it upset me, so that's why I fervently tried to explain my reasons for liking TDP, in hopes you would at least respect my opinion, even if you don't agree.

    My most important point that I've tried to make from the beginning, which has been skidded around quite a lot, is that IT IS OKAY if you like Seasons 1&2 better than TDP. You are COMPLETELY ALLOWED to have that opinion! I AM FINE with you having that opinion, and I always have been! Seasons 1&2 and TDP are very different, and it's perfectly okay to prefer one over the other!
    What isn't fine is when you try to make someone else feel bad for liking something that you don't like as much, which is what I've felt like you've been doing to me. We can disagree and have different opinions and that's okay. But you shouldn't try to force your opinion or others or try to tell them what they like is bad or they're stupid because what you like is better.
    You can say "I disagree with your opinion and here's why... but the opinion you have is okay even if I don't agree with it."
    And that's really all I've wanted. For you to treat me and my opinion with respect, and not try to make me feel bad or stupid for just liking something more.

    So I want to stop this now, and say while I don't agree with you or your opinion, I respect both. And I would very much appreciate if you'd do the same for me; agree to disagree, and no longer attack me for simply enjoying something.
    An apology for calling me a "stubborn idiot" would also be nice.

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    Vainamoinen Moderator

    @Tora Newton Y. said:
    The Devil's Playhouse:
    Episode 1: 81/100
    Episode 2: 83/100
    Episode 3: 75/100
    Episode 4: 76/100
    Episode 5: 81/100



    Awww no fair. ;)

    I specifically played episode 3 yesterday - not the episodes in sequence - and found this to be a simply excellent episode. TDP had the tendency to mix things up by introducing new game mechanics at will, and that worked wonderfully in episode 2 ("film reel mechanics") and episode 3 ("interrogation techniques").

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