Posts Tagged ‘Cinematics’

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The Secret World: Little Photo Album Of Horrors

July 5, 2012

Note: While none of these screenshots are going to be terribly revealing, I have to say this anyway to cover my ass: some of the following images may contain itty-bitty elements of spoilers. If you have plans to play The Secret World and would like to head in with completely fresh eyes, you may wish to avoid this post. I have also ordered the images from least to most spoilerific.

Wish you were here!

Nick: Look Dear, what a nice, quaint looking town sign.
Laeyn: Oh, oh! Let’s take a photo in front of it together like the annoying tourists that we are!
In the distance: BRAAAAAAAIIIIIINNNNNNNS…

Zombies and fire, not good bedfellows.

Excerpt from the Templar’s Guide to Zombie Defense Training:

Always exercise caution when encountering a zombie on fire. Flames do not affect the undead as it would for humans in that it unfortunately acts as a poor deterrent; however, given time the zombie will eventually be neutralized due to the normal processes of combustion. In other words, flaming zombie kabob. While not necessarily an unwanted result, it’s what occurs in the interim that poses the biggest problem.

This does not bode well…

Kingsmouth town is full of disturbing images like this one, leading you to wonder what might have happened to the poor, hapless bastard who lost all that blood.

Yes, that WTF expression is completely justified.

The denizens of Kingsmouth — or those who survived, anyway — are a pleasant folk, just trying to make do the best they can in a bad situation. Unfortunately, I think being holed up in the middle of a zombie apocalypse has made a lot of them a little loopy. Though in the case of Scrapyard Edgar, it is entirely possible that he might have been like this to begin with.

I hope to hell that you’re not contagious.

Here’s an interesting article about Ragnar Tornquist and how his film background may have influenced TSW’s direction, which I found very enlightening (thank you to @PaganRites for originally pointing me to the link). From the cinematography and high production values evident in the game’s cutscenes to the quality of the script and talented voice work — it all make so much more sense now.

Mommeeeeeeee!

One of my favorite screenshots, not only because it is visually arresting, but also because the quest itself almost made me wet my pants.

Tarantella: “I’m sure ‘Not waving blades around in aircraft’ is on something like page 2 of The Templar Health & Safety Manual, Laeyn. Didn’t you read it?” Hmm, evidently not.

Guest screenshot from fellow cabal member Solaris, from our all-guild run of the instance Polaris (for quest Dead in the Water). Not much to say about this shot that wouldn’t be a spoiler, so I’m just gonna leave you with “Can you say, Cloverfield moment?”

I call this pic, “The Stand.”

Another shot of our heroes: Thermic, Tarantella, Laeyn, Solaris, and Dutty facing down a boss in Polaris. Being specialized for damage but possessing even just the wimpiest of defense abilities immediately elevated me to the position of main tank. A promotion on the battlefield, as it were. Taking a more focused path to tanking may be in order, but what impressed me was how quickly I was able to move some stuff around and still perform quite decently.

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Always In Motion Is The Future

June 10, 2011

Unsurprisingly, with everything that happened this week, today’s Star Wars: The Old Republic update was a recap of their events and features at E3.

  • Of course, the “Return” Cinematic Intro was the centerpiece. Last year, the “Hope” trailer had everyone excited about the Trooper, while this year, everyone is talking about the Smuggler. Bah! And they say BioWare gives no love to the Republic.
  • A preview trailer of the features we have to look forward to in SWTOR. Quite honestly, I liked that video just much as — if not more — than I did “Return”. It lacks the bells and whistles of a cinematic, but it has something better — actual gameplay footage.
  • A trailer for the Operation of Eternity Vault, a raid on the planet of Belsavis. There’s still not enough endgame information for me to make a judgment, but I’m curious. To recapitulate my own thoughts, I used to be a lot more interested in MMO raiding, but not so much anymore since I discovered how quickly I lost interest in the grind and gear progression. Don’t get me wrong — I’ll raid in SWTOR. But to be perfectly honest, unless they do something very different, I can’t see myself being converted in the long run. Don’t worry about me though, there are always going to be other classes to play. My favorite part of an MMO has always been the leveling, the journey, the experience.
  • The Tatooine Developer Walkthrough. Sith Sorcerors and Sand People and Krayt Dragons, oh my! And I still can’t get over how damn huge that place is. My sense of exploration is tingling.
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SWTOR: E3 Eye Candy

June 6, 2011

The new Star Wars: The Old Republic cinematic trailer, “Return”:

Excuse me for a sec, while I try real hard to hold my eyeballs in. They’re sort of bleeding out right now from watching all that awesomeness — but also from the flash and razzle dazzle. And here I thought the “Hope” trailer was over the top.

Still, Blur Studios has done it again, pulling off what is in my opinion the most detailed and elaborate out of all the SWTOR cinematic trailers. They gave attention to both the Empire and the Republic, filling in some of the history for both Satele and Malgus, while throwing in a healthy dose of space combat and the compulsory lightsaber duel sequences.

A few classes also got to relish their moments in the limelight, though some managed to look waaaaay cooler than others, *cough* Smuggler *cough*. I was a little skeptical about the overall look and feel of the Gunslinger at first, but no longer. He looked like he was born to rock the Star Wars universe and the Old Republic.

Also shown today at the EA presentation at E3, the “Choose” montage trailer:

Apparently, “Choose” was always going to be shown at the press conference, with “Return” being saved for a debut on swtor.com. Since the previous trailers were shown at E3, I think that led to a lot of confusion, despite the note at the end of the trailer pointing to the new cinematic at the official game site. Why Dr. Greg Zeschuk didn’t also say so in his opening speech was a missed opportunity in my opinion, or else they must think everyone is plugged into twitter or other social networks to know stuff these days.

There will be no release date announced during E3 2011, or any pre-order details. Not that I was expecting it, but I’m not denying that there was always that hope. I mean, picture it, how cool would it have been if the trailer had actually played out this way: “CHOOSE YOUR SIDE…JOIN YOUR ALLIES…THE BATTLE BEGINS”…and BOOM, release date? Sadly, now it’s more like, THE BATTLE BEGINS…on the official community forums!

If you can tune out all the rage, however, the good news is that Bioware is still aiming for a “second half of 2011″ release. Good things come to those who wait; with luck, we’ll be playing this game within the next 6 months. While the SWTOR coverage at the EA conference may have been scarce (though I did get to drool all over Mass Effect 3), over the next few days there should be more BioWare panels and demos from the show floor, with more on features teased in last weekend’s E3 preview trailer:

I love cinematic trailers, but they never reflect what the finished game will look like. I, however, thoroughly enjoyed feasting upon all the actual gameplay footage shown in the video above.

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SWTOR: Friday Grab Bag

June 3, 2011

Quite a lot of Star Wars: The Old Republic updates to cover today, not just from the game site but from all around the net, which is something of a surprise considering how close we are coming up on E3. Granted, nothing earth-shattering, but I had expected things to get a little quiet. Or is this a sign of things moving forward, since by all accounts SWTOR is still on track for a 2011 release?

Advanced Class Page Update

First from swtor.com, the webpage for Advanced Classes has been overhauled so you can see their information laid out nicely without digging through all the regular class pages. You can view how a particular class “branches”, as well as the various skill-sets that become available as you level. A bunch of passive class abilities can be gleaned from this update, but otherwise it’s purely an improvement to the official site. Still, it’s much more informational than what we had before, and just look at all the pretty colors now!

New Lost Suns Comic

Another comic that will tie into the story line of SWTOR, taking place at the same time as the start of the game. The first issue of “The Lost Suns” will be available from next Wednesday, this time not as an e-comic, so I’m going to have to make the trek to my neighborhood comic book store.

I think this is going to be a good one. Written by the same writer who did the “Blood of the Empire” (which I enjoyed a lot), “The Lost Suns” will star Theron Shan as a Republic spy sent on a mission to discover secrets of the Sith Empire. Yep, another Shan. Glad to see Bastila’s line has been so prolific. Theron, however, is apparently the estranged son of the Grand Master Jedi Satele Shan — but he himself is not a Jedi. From the moment “a secret son” was translated from the Aurebesh found on Satele’s biography page, the identity of this young man had been shrouded in mystery, making me wonder if the title of the comic is also meant to be a clever play on words.

Ah, the delicious mystery — this is why I love comic and book tie-ins. The Q&A also states that Theron’s story will have profound repercussions on the plots in the game, along with “about a hundred pages’ worth of aliens, outfits, spaceships, and landscapes based on game content”. Sounds good, though I would probably pick this one up even if it had zip to do with SWTOR. I can never turn down a good Star Wars comic after all.

SWTOR at E3

E3 is right around the corner. This new article pretty much lays out what to expect — sneak previews of an encounter with the Eternity Vault on the planet of Belsavis, the struggle to dethrone a usurper on Alderaan, and a battle with Sandpeople and more on Tattooine.

Signs also point to the possibility of a new cinematic trailer, just like the last couple of years. If you get the swtor.com newsletter, you might have noticed an image at the bottom of the email teasing something happening on the site June 6:

If the image looks familiar, that’s because we’ve already seen snippets of it from the novel trailer for “Deceived“. As Jaramukhti has already pointed out months ago, that seemed like a hell of a lot of work just for a book trailer, no? His hopes that the footage will turn out to be the making of a new cinematic may pan out after all. Me, I’m hoping it will be a release date trailer! Too optimistic, maybe?

MMORPG.com Interview

A pretty comprehensive interview with Georg Zoeller on the subject of Advanced Classes, going over the system and looking more closely at specific abilities and details of the classes. I think the reason why there’s so much information on these ACs is that they’re really trying to emphasize the point that it’s really more like 8 classes per faction rather than the 4 — each branch will have its own story, the AC choice will not be optional, and as far as I know, once you make the decision you can’t take it back.

EA Launches Origin

EA debuts Origin today, their new direct-to-consumer gaming platform for gamers to purchase and download EA games and other content. They’re clearly gunning for services like Steam with this, which is both bad and good I guess, since I do all my digital game purchases through Steam exclusively at the moment, but buying stuff like DLC and other content for Mass Effect, Dragon Age etc. and keeping it all together could be easier with Origin.

In addition, “digital downloads of Star Wars: The Old Republic will be available exclusively on Origin later this year”. What this means for me, I don’t know. I was always planning on getting a boxed Collector’s Edition, but the idea of no-hassle digital delivery is also very appealing. But what to do, what to do, when both avenues will no doubt offer “exclusives” to tempt me?

More…?

I’ve been keeping an eye on Twitter all morning, and the forecast was calling for scattered SWTOR updates throughout the day from everywhere. There may be more coming, I don’t know, but they’re definitely ramping up for E3 and when next week rolls around I’m sure things will get even more crazy.

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TGI-SWTOR-F

March 18, 2011

No doubt BioWare is still winding down from their crazy PAX East weekend, so I wasn’t surprised to see a Star Wars: The Old Republic Friday update that was a little more on the light side. No pun intended.

The Fan Friday update features all that we might expect — new fan creations, new forum avatars, new concept art, and even a fan site spotlight. But as usual, my attention was drawn to the Studio Insider.

When I think “cinematic animation”, yeah actually, I do picture that place “where people wear skin-tight suits with ping pong balls all over them”. It’s how the movements in the game manage to look so fluid, natural and realistic. The neat thing too, of course, is how it could look just as smooth when it’s done by hand. And what I find really amazing, is how even the tiniest motion or gesture can add so much to a scene, yet often those little movements are the ones that are so easy to miss.

For instance, the 8 seconds of footage in the video they showed was over so quickly I barely even had time to register much of anything beyond the fact it showed a couple of Hutts being owned, let alone that one was holding up its hands and the other one was trying to get away. It wasn’t until after I read the commentary that I noticed those details when I watched it again. But of course, paradoxically, if those little movements hadn’t been there in the first place, one would have observed right away that there was something “off” about the scene.

The Community Q&A also interested me this week, because it’s focused on the topic of flashpoints, and also because some of World Designer Jesse Sky’s responses resonated with my own thoughts so well. In fact, it’s a little creepy. Quotes like his answers about mob fights requiring coordination and players to “think on their feet” reflected exactly how I felt when I played the demo for the Taral V flashpoint at PAX East. And of course, his answer to the question about whether class roles are fixed (“some sections of Flashpoints are paced in such a way that healers can switch into damage roles and tanks can get a bit more reckless”) actually made me breathe a sigh of relief — mainly because I definitely felt those shifts in style and roles while I was playing, and I’m happy to know I wasn’t crazy and just imagining things.

Also, by being away the whole of last week, I just realized I broke months and months of my blog’s tradition by skipping a post about last Friday’s update. Normally I’d just let it go, but it was such an awesome trailer, it would be a great disservice if I just pretended it never happened.

There had been rumors flying around before PAX East about maybe seeing another cinematic trailer debuting at the show, and I guess they were half-right. I for one think it was for the better that it didn’t turn out to be another cinematic as we already have two great ones and a third would just be overkill. Cinematic trailers make for excellent eye-candy, but I have a feeling that at this point people are going to be more interested in seeing actual in-game footage and some action from the game. Unfortunately, I wasn’t on the exhibition show floor when they showed this for the first time on the SWTOR stage last week, but I was able to see it later in the day. I think it’s everything from the visuals to the music — this trailer gave me chills.

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Hope Trailer

June 14, 2010

To me, cinematic trailers are really nothing more than tools that game companies use to feed the hype machine, and very rarely do they ever depict what actual gameplay will be like. But still, I won’t lie — ever since Bioware released their “first” Deceived trailer for Star Wars: The Old Republic I’ve had my hopes up for a second one. These hopes were finally answered on Friday night as I watched the Gametrailers TV special and saw a short “the-making-of type” feature on the new cinematic trailer that was to be revealed during E3 2010. I didn’t even care that all they showed was like 5 seconds of actual footage from the trailer; knowing that it would feature Troopers was good enough for me.

Anyway, I’d be geeking out on the SWTOR community site right now if the forums hadn’t just gone down due to extremely high traffic (I’m not surprised) so I’ll just have to do my freaking out here, because the full trailer was released earlier today, aptly named Hope.

Some quick thoughts:

  • Great job once again by Blur Studio.
  • Finally, the Republic gets some love!
  • There was speculation that this trailer was going to explain how Darth Malgus got his mask…I was actually sort of hoping for a sticky grenade to the face.
  • This trailer is going to make the Trooper a wildly popular class.
  • Looking forward to finding out more about the female Jedi with the double bladed light saber in a future Biographies page (I’m skeptical that it’s Satele Shan due to some discrepancies in age, skills and appearance).
  • Some sort of force-deflection/absorption technique was how she was able to stop the light saber with her hand?
  • That move she made looked like something out of Dragonball Z.
  • Not as mind-blowing as Deceived, but I admit my expectations were higher for this one.
  • This game is going to completely destroy my life.
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Mass Effect 2 Launch Trailer

January 22, 2010

Oh my God, January 26th just can’t come soon enough.

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