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Remember those Fighting Fantasy "choose your own adventure" books penned by the likes of Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone - now whatever happened to them... - in the mid-1980s? Well, Dishonored plays like the ultimate version of one of those, offering choice in terms of strategy and approach at every turn. Dishonored Dolly …

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*want*

That is all.

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Happy

So good. Here's the best way to play (I think).

I love how open this game is, all the little stories you find off to the side, often not explained but obvious from the context. In addition to reading all the books, make sure you talk to everyone until they stop talking back, and use the heart on them till it repeats if you want the full story.

But here's what I suggest - play through once trying to sneak but just killing everyone when you mess up. Get the disappearing bodies skills and just blink, backstab, blink, or headshot with bolts. It'll go fairly fast, because if everyone's dead you can explore pretty quickly.

Now play again - kill nobody, don't get detected (ghosting). By this point your skills are good enough that you can slip through the levels with ease. You think killing every hostile on the level is badass? Having nobody even know you were there is so much more satisfying. And yes, they made it so you can play the entire game without killing anyone. The levels will take longer but you will feel so much more relaxed. You are now the ultimate Zen Assassin. Does a falling victim make a sound if it's not dead?

This game is the Thief 4 I've been waiting for.

P.S: I'm fairly sad that when they playtested the masquerade mission you mention none of the console players could figure it out without explicit directions on what to do, which is why the NPCs in that mission rub things in your face ('HEY MAYBE YOU SHOULD GO UPSTAIRS WINK WINK') even if you're a PC player. Oh well.

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Enjoying the game but,

I wouldn't call it hyper-realistic. The graphics are fairly poor IMO, its pretty console focused as you can tell from the menus.

I'm hoping someone releases a mod with higher res textures or something.

Bring on the next console generation. The tech's too old now.

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Re: Enjoying the game but,

Judging from the screenshots, I do like the Half-Life 2 look. In a sense, it abstracts away detail you don't care about.

Going the all-realistic road is barking up the wrong tree, I say.

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Re: I'm hoping someone releases a mod with higher res textures or something.

It's supposed to look like a painting(*), therefore putting higher res textures probably wouldn't add anything because it would still be smudgy unless you wanted to ruin the aesthetic.

(*) Which is actually quite a nice way of keeping the frame rate up too.

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Re: Enjoying the game but,

Quote Alistair : Bring on the next console generation. The tech's too old now.

Graphics on their own add only a little to a game. A good game is a combination of challenge, graphics, music , storyline, Accomplishments, evolution, ambience, the unexpected etc etc etc .

The console in itself is nothing compared to a clever programmer. John McCormack , Roberta Williams etc had nowhere near the processing power that we have today and yet they made fantastic games...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Enjoying the game but,

Let me qualify this before; I like this game a lot.

For me, the graphics are not stunning... they are great in places, but a bit dodgy in the rest... It's mostly down to texturing actually, some bits look very grainy and I'm not entirely certain it's intended. I remember at the time I though Metal Gear Solid looked absolutely brilliant, I never even noticed that all the hands were stuck together in one mitten type block, and the textures were almost bitmaps in places. Dishonoured shares a very minor flaw in that regard but I can live with it... other than that, it has been excellent so far.

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Unhappy

Glitches

While this is obviously a fantastic game and I'm probably going to buy this fairly soon, I would have snapped it up on day one already if it hadn't been for Bethesda's rep for bugs. Their 95% titles would be 99.9% titles if they would go the last mile and iron out the kinks in the engine. I gave up on Fallout: New Vegas around about the 7th time it crashed.

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Re: Glitches

Playing the PC version (with 2G RAM) and I've had zero glitches so far. It's built using the Unreal engine so the underlying tech is rock solid.

I've had one mission where I thought I'd hit a glitch but turned out the NPC was lying to me - brilliant when I realised that.

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Re: Glitches

It's not a Bethesda title - they're just publishing it.

Arkane Studios are the development team.

Enjoying it so far, do keep thinking at points that Batman: AC was more fun though.

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Re: What happened to Steve Jackson?

Wrong Steve Jackson - your getting confused with the American one, publisher or Illuminati and Munchkin, and beneficiary of a nice 'donation' from the Feds.

The British one was a founder of Games Workshop and moved onto computer games.

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Black Helicopters

Re: What happened to Steve Jackson?

That should be 'publisher of...'.

The Discordian Society is obviously trying to make me look bad.

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Coat

Re: What happened to Steve Jackson?

Fnord.

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So it does get better then?

So far I've only played through the opening section, up to the first encounter with the Observer (which appeared to involve a Half-Life Xen-style platform section, only this time with magic powers that appear to cut out randomly mid-jump). Much as I want to be sucked in, it hasn't happened for me yet.

Playing the Xbox 360 version with the game installed to the hard drive, the graphics are bordering on terrible at times. Sometimes you'll randomly get stuck with low-res textures, particularly after a reload; you'll be standing directly in front of a wall that's covered in signs/posters and the whole thing will be completely pixellated.

The stealth element seems very touch-and-go, in the opening mission it was hard to tell what guards were reacting to (how far can they see in darkness? how slowly do you have to sneak behind them before they hear your footsteps?) - though it looks like you can earn upgrades which allow you to see how detectable you are, so that might be some help.

And now the Observer has given me... a heart? Something to do with detecting treasure/upgrades? I really want to like this game, but how much further do I have to go before I get to the interesting missions that all the reviews have spoken about?

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Re: So it does get better then?

You're really early in the game, essentially you are still in what i'd consider the tutorial/introductory phase.

As for how far can guards see etc. You need to use runes you find (by using the heart) to upgrade your powers. (I'm on the pc, so pressing J brings up the screen for that)

Also, you get a little warning about guards seeing you by the little three bolts thing above their heads. It's at three they go into full alert and see you.

As long as you're crouched the guards won't hear you.

As to getting better, it gets better and better.

I feel like this game has been a long time coming, I love the style of it. Everything about it is pure class. It really does put to shame a LOT of what people consider AAA games.

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Go

Re: So it does get better then?

As has been said, that's all just the tutorial.

In my first sitting I got up to the point where you're about to start the first proper mission and thought "I'm not really feeling this game". The next time I played I went straight into the first proper mission, spent 2 hours playing, and I'm still only part way through. I 'get' the game now. It makes sense. I'm really enjoying having to sit back and think about something before I do it, climbing up above the guards and planning out a route, dropping behind them to take them out without them ever knowing I was there...

Like you said, it's difficult at first to gauge how the guards behave, but once you get into the more open environments after you've broken out of prison it becomes a much better game.

I'm loving the feel of the city, the way it immerses you, the chatter of the population, the little side quests (the second of which involves a moral choice)...

I could go on, but I won't, as the review says it better than I could. (Go because you should go and play it some more)

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Re: So it does get better then?

Playing the Xbox 360 version with the game installed to the hard drive, the graphics are bordering on terrible at times

I think I've located your problem. To say that the 360's been left behind on graphical quality would be accurate, if it hadn't happened about three years ago.

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Unhappy

First person. Ugh.

Sounds like a great game, shame I just cannot abide playing in first person. Yeah, I know I'm in the minority on this, but if this was third person I'd be buying...

Downvotes expected in 3,2,1...

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Re: First person. Ugh.

I can't stand 3rd person - I want to BE the character, not navigate the character.

Hopefully you are in the minority and TPS's don't become the norm.

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Happy

Re: First person. Ugh.

I don't agree with what you are saying, but I understand. FPS's can be tiresome, I recommend ARMA 2 and DayZ because the both have 3rd and 1st person modes, as every game should have. It surely wouldnt be much harder to make it, and would make the game more appealing to the masses.

Although, if it was in third person, it would probably go too far into Assasins Creed territory (Which it already is, and is currently placing a big red flag saying "All your genre are belong to us!")

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Re: First person. Ugh.

I can tolerate 3rd person, but not with racing / driving games. For this reason I couldn't get behind (literally) Saints Row 3. When I drive I am *in* the car, not hovering 20 feet diagonally behind it.

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Re: First person. Ugh.

Used to be the same until I played HL2. Now 3rd person seems so clumsy in comparison.

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Choice

is what this game is all about.

Graphics are fine they are Borderlands like yet more subtle and to me, immerse the player more. There are many subtle details NPC conversations, NPC behaviour, NPC reaction to your character and actions that along with the atmosphere make this game very immersive. Not to mention the cute rats and hagfish either of which can be possessed and controlled.

Here's a FPS game that lets you plan, think and choose your own approach to every mission.

Here's a FPS that doesn't rail the user through endless characterless NPC's that walk into your line of fire.

Here's a FPS for those that like to think a little during their game play.

So far the game has performed flawlessly, no bugs, no problems.

I normally don't recommend games because they are usually just more of the same. This one is a little different.

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Slightly off topic...

> Fighting Fantasy "choose your own adventure" books

Last night my friend showed me her proud new possession: "YOU can be the Stainless Steel Rat", a Fighting Fantasy style book that you play (read?) as Slippery Jim de Gris's protégée.

"Slobber in gratitude at Sadie the Sadistic and go immediately to 288"

HH RIP

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Slightly off topic...

I'll just add that they have made a couple of the fighting fantasy books into PS3 mini games. I bought Warlock of Firetop Mountain for £1.99 and it made me actually finish it properly for the 1st time ever. No more making up dice rolls or flicking back to the previous page if I made a wrong decision.

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A very "Thief" feeling about this game from the reliance on stealth, knocking guards unconscious to the lonesome noises you hear when reading books and the clever use of music and tension sounds. I love it! More of these kind of titles please.

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Meh

Demo?

Looks like a cross between Fallout 3, Bioshock and Hitman.

Might download the 360 demo. I enjoyed the Fallout games, loved the Bioshocks but could never get into Hitman...

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Bring your own challenge.

One caveat that deserves to be mentioned for this game, it's incredibly easy even on the very hardest difficultly setting. If you're looking for a game like Thief, a brutally unforgiving sneak-em-up, you're out of luck. You get an arsenal of magic powers that make either killing or sneaking around people incredibly easy. Once you have the fully upgraded stop time power, nothing really presents a challenge. You're even given a sort of second chance at stealth in the form of sleep darts, so if someone comes upon you unexpectedly holding a maid in a compromising position, then it's one shot and nighty-night guard.

If there's one thing I could change about this game it would be to have a proper very hard difficulty setting. One where the guards aren't imbeciles who don't notice when you abduct their friend from the room they're patrolling and stash his limp body in a nearby toilet. One where if you remove a full tank of whale oil from a security device to power it down, someone comes to investigate and you can choose between either taking them out, or substituting in an empty tank to make it look like it just ran out. Little touches like that would make the game a challenge.

As it is, it's a fun game to play, but the challenge you bring to it pretty much has to be with house rules. If you're the kind of person who likes to artificially limit themselves, this would be a good one for you. It'd be interesting to see how hard it would be to be stealthy without using the see through walls power, for example.

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MJI
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I think I will add this to my want list

Sounds good.

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