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Alpha Protocol: Old Thread

SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch*Registered User regular
edited June 2010 in Games and Technology
Alpha Protocol

4387860832_f5f126b98a.jpg

Platforms: PC, 360, PS3
Release Date(s):
[strike]February 2009
'Summer' 2009
October 2009
'Spring' 2010[/strike]

Australia: May 27, 2010
Europe: May 28, 2010
North America: June 1, 2010
Offical Website:http://www.alphaprotocol.com/us/main.php
Dev blog: http://blogs.ign.com/Alpha.Protocol/
Twitter:
http://twitter.com/Obsidian_Ent (Updates occasionally with news)
http://twitter.com/ChrisAvellone (Chris Avellone)
http://twitter.com/mikethorton (In character twitter, hasn't been updated in months, but worth reading anyway)


Also, a reminder for anyone getting this on PC stateside
: You can get it for around $36 on D2D's British page, no hassle. I don't regret the cash thus far.
Also: console versions are $45 at Kmart this week (May 30 - June 5)

The PR:
Loyalty carries a price and no one knows this more than agent Michael Thorton. A talented young agent cast out by his government, Thorton is the only one with the information needed to stop an impending international catastrophe. To do so means he must cut himself off from the very people he is sworn to protect. As players determine how to accomplish different objectives, the decisions made and actions taken in each mission will ultimately transform the type of secret agent Michael Thorton will become. Every choice the player makes as Michael Thorton will carry consequences for his future and the fate of the world.

KEY FEATURES
A morally-complex branching story - The world is not black and white and the story will change based upon how you act in it. By replaying the game with different choices, you will have a very different narrative.
Dialogue Stance System – The revolutionary new dialog systems allows full control of Thorton’s reactions through emotive controls. However, characters will not always react the same way. He will have to choose carefully in each dialog.
A Modern Day Role Playing Experience with Action Gameplay – The new RPG system gives players the ability to mold Thorton into the secret agent they want him to become with lethal close-combat techniques, marksmanship abilities, proficiency with spy gadgets, and much more.
Living, realistic international world that responds to Thorton - Thorton will travel across the globe, encountering mysterious contacts and deadly enemies multiple times over the course of Alpha Protocol's plot. Depending on his previous interactions with a character or a location, the world's reactions to him will change, opening new possibilities and gameplay avenues.


That's great, but I'm used to my RPGs being fully voice acted, so don't throw words at me:
A fairly concise overview of what the game is via gamespot:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyznNNNwHso


Choices?
Yes, would it really be an Obsidian game without Choices™? Obviously, like most wRPGs, most of your decisions will be made based on how you interact with the other characters. Thus, Obsidian has developed their Dynamic Dialogue System ©, where you must decide how to approach other characters. Rather than having a list of differnt dialogue options the player must read to decide which to take, Obsidian has distilled it down to 3 dialogue 'stances'. The core motivation behind the DDS is Obsidian thinking "what would JB do?" JB being James Bond, Jason Bourne, or Jack Bauer, the 'holy trinity' of the 3 archetypal playstyles they wanted to emphasize: Suave, Professional, or Aggressive respectively.

And of course, the all important 4th archetype: [Headslam]
590px_AP3.jpg

The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them, just be aware that they're doing the same to you, and more than other games, Alpha protocol is all about


Reactivity
Is the name of the game. Every action you take has repercussions. More importantly, unlike some other sissy RPGs, there is no good or evil (or, if you're lucky neutral) decisions, and even 'messing up' will give you some bonuses.
A flow chart for a single scene:
image0004.jpg


Rarg! Enough talkie. Me want gameplay!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o4MOua3_-rY
Like practically every wRPG these days, Alpha Protocol is a FPS hybrid, which uses a point based system similar to Mass Efffect 1, where you allocate points into each category with milestones giving you new active skills interspersed with levels that just improve your existing capabilities. Along with the weapon skills (pistols, SMGs, Assault rifles, Shotguns, and Martial arts), you can also gain proficiency in Stealth, toughness, gadget use, and sabotage.
alphaprotocskiltr.jpg

Really, you have almost as many options out of combat as you do in it:
(CG trailer, may not actually be representative of final game)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QE0-unF_xBs


Character Customization
You play as Mike Thorton, who has a fixed backstory (with 2 NG+ modes that effect how other charccters react to you: 'recruit' or 'veteran''). That means no poorly lit character creators to create mutant 'people' in, but it doesn't mean that there's no character customization:
Spoiler:


Pre-order Bonuses For the console versions only
Gamestop has the 'Assault pack' with some in game weapons
Spoiler:
Alternatively, you can get the 'stealth pack' if you order from Best Buy:
Spoiler:

You can also get Space Seige if you pre-order it from most of the digital distribution sites, like Steam, D2D, or gamersgate, but I'd really hesitate calling that a bonus

The Achievements

PC stuff:
Spoiler:


Dev Diaries

Previews and Interviews:
(BTW, these are mostly new ones I never got around to posting in the last thread, let me know which older ones are the best to put here)
http://www.talkxbox.com/news/5990/alpha-protocol-interview/
http://www.nowgamer.com/features/616/interview-alpha-protocol
http://www.sidequesting.com/2010/04/pax-impressions-alpha-protocol/
http://www.gamingangels.com/2010/04/pax-east-preview-alpha-protocol/
http://www.irontowerstudio.com/forum/index.php/topic,1473.0.html
http://www.1up.com/do/previewPage?cId=3179066

Updates:
6/1 Out now in the US
5/27 Game out everywhere (but the US). Reviews are also trickling out, thus the title
5/20 A couple more reviews out
5/17 The first review is in from a Spanish Mag. 88/100
5/11 About an hours worth of (poorly played) gameplay at 1up
5/1 DRM confirmed to be Unilock, even on steam version. Online Activation required, 5 install limit
4/16 But Thou Must watch the AP PAX East Panel


Also, Avellone:
picture20016.jpg

Spoit on
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Posts

  • MongerMonger Hella Fuckin Smokey Dallas, TXRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
  • PolloDiabloPolloDiablo Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Has anyone actually played Space Siege? The blurb on Steam makes it seem not so bad.

    Be excellent to each other you stupid cunts.
  • SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Well, no, but you have to be pretty bad to get a metacritic score of 60.

    Also, one of the mods on the Obsidian forums actually knows what the heck unilock is:
    Uniloc was also used in another Sega-published game, Football Manager 2009. It had a 5-machine installation limit, and from memory, needed online activation with a key upon installation - but afterwards required nothing, no CD in drive, to play. Oh, and if you uninstall, you get an activation back.

    Seems like a pretty reasonable deal.

    EDIT:And apparently Football Manager 2010 also had the option of installing in Steam (from the disc), which used Steam's built in DRM.

    EDIT2: Actually it seams like there were different versions of DRM for FM2010. The steam version just used steam, while other digital distro sites used the online Unilock activation mentioned above. Retail discs had the option of using steam or using DVD verification, which didn't require connecting online at all

    EDIT 3: So all these edits are actually talking about what they did for FM 2010, which are likely because of the problems they had with FM 2009. They actually removed Unilock from all versions except non-steam DD, which means that likely it'll also only be on non-steam DD versions of AP too

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  • TertieeTertiee Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I have yet to see any favorable impressions of Space Siege.

  • SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Oh yeah, 2 more videos from trawling the Obsidian forums, nothing that new in either one really, and the both load kind of slowly:
    http://www.gamereactor.se/nyheter/21900/GRTV%3A+Vi+snackar+Alpha+Protocol/?sid=20fe907425aafc48cfd78b2355a94b67
    Apparently you "might not want to trust" the agency you start with and you can actually try to lie about what you did in the flashback/forward debriefings

    http://www.jeuxactu.com/article-44229-alpha-protocol-l-agent-marcuss-117-a-prague.html
    Skip to about 6:30 in it to get to the actual interview, which I swore I've actually already seen, but there are snippets of new gameplay footage mixed in.

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  • Zetetic ElenchZetetic Elench Registered User
    edited April 2010
    I don't think I've mentioned yet how much I love the visual design of the UI. It's so clean.

    nemosig.png
  • XagarathXagarath Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    This really has taken too long to come out.

  • PolloDiabloPolloDiablo Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Way too long.

    Be excellent to each other you stupid cunts.
  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    However, I'm sure it will be worth the wait, for this game looks good. Very good.

  • BlackDoveBlackDove Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Even if it ends up being bug infested as all Obsidian games, I'm pretty sure I'll still like it.

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    BlackDove wrote: »
    Even if it ends up being bug infested as all Obsidian games, I'm pretty sure I'll still like it.

    I can see them having that sorted out this time though. Everything looks very smooth and clean and polished so far, so I'm cautiously optimistic. Hopefully it won't be anywhere near as bad as KoToR II, which would have been awesome if they'd actually finished them damn thing.

  • TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu ___________PIGEON _________San Diego, CA Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Xagarath wrote: »
    This really has taken too long to come out.

    Unlike KOTOR2. And we know how that turned out.
    Spoiler:

  • Delta AssaultDelta Assault Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Space Siege's writing was top notch, but its combat mechanics were really clunky.

  • durandal4532durandal4532 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    So yeah, I basically forgot about this, but now I am super excited. However: Australia first what kind of crazy upside down world is this?

  • reVersereVerse Never odd or even Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them...

    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

  • l337CrappyJackl337CrappyJack Registered User
    edited April 2010
    reVerse wrote: »
    The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them...

    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

    Then don't do it. If it doesn't fit your playstyle, then skip over that function.

  • Zen VulgarityZen Vulgarity Ask me about Super Propane and Super Propane accessoriesRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Oh thank god

    aviators

    Dat Ass

    344B2YT.gifsteamicon48x48.gif Know about web development? I need your help with my professional site!
  • durandal4532durandal4532 Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    reVerse wrote: »
    The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them...

    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

    Then don't do it. If it doesn't fit your playstyle, then skip over that function.

    The Jack Bauer secret is that all the dossiers include the footnote "Does not enjoy being shot in thigh."

  • DeaderinredDeaderinred Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Man is this really out next month? i dont want to be fooled again yo!

  • DarkWarriorDarkWarrior __BANNED USERS
    edited April 2010
    reVerse wrote: »
    The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them...

    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

    Then don't do it. If it doesn't fit your playstyle, then skip over that function.

    You should be able to judge most characters by their personality. The spunky russian chick for instance likes aggresive men, thats not exactly a shock. I imagine few like being punched in the face.

    ...it's in the shape of a giant c**k.
  • l337CrappyJackl337CrappyJack Registered User
    edited April 2010
    reVerse wrote: »
    The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them...

    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

    Then don't do it. If it doesn't fit your playstyle, then skip over that function.

    You should be able to judge most characters by their personality. The spunky russian chick for instance likes aggresive men, thats not exactly a shock. I imagine few like being punched in the face.

    And again, pissing them off will get you comparable results to making them like you. That's what has me excited, the fact that there's no one choice that gets you all the cool shit; you get cool shit for pretty much EVERYTHING you do. Smooth talk a guy? Get a perk. Punch that guy? Get different perk.

  • TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu ___________PIGEON _________San Diego, CA Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    reVerse wrote: »
    The key gameplay innovation is, unlike most RPGs, you actually have a time limit to make your choice, otherwise, it defaults to your previous dialogue stance. Each NPC reacts to different approaches, so you have to make sure you're responding appropriately to get what you want. You can collect Dossiers on important NPCs to find out their motivations and how to best respond to them...

    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

    Then don't do it. If it doesn't fit your playstyle, then skip over that function.

    You should be able to judge most characters by their personality. The spunky russian chick for instance likes aggresive men, thats not exactly a shock. I imagine few like being punched in the face.

    And again, pissing them off will get you comparable results to making them like you. That's what has me excited, the fact that there's no one choice that gets you all the cool shit; you get cool shit for pretty much EVERYTHING you do. Smooth talk a guy? Get a perk. Punch that guy? Get different perk.

    Right, it's not "read boring log for best results," it's "read boring log if you want to know what you're getting into instead of just playing it by ear."

  • SannomSannom Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    This sounds a bit too much like "read boring log entries for best results".

    You don't realize how much I wanted for all those codex entries in Dragon Age to have an impact on the game, like saying to someone that we already knew about what he was talking about, or saying to Genetivi that we were big fans of his works!
    You should be able to judge most characters by their personality.

    It might be a little bit harder for the punk teen Sis though. What with her being mute and all.

  • truck-a-saurastruck-a-sauras Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    So yeah, I basically forgot about this, but now I am super excited. However: Australia first what kind of crazy upside down world is this?

    makes sense to me they would get it first.... they live in the future don't they.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    Steam
    XBOX
  • LoveIsUnityLoveIsUnity Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I can't wait to get my hands on this. Is a Radeon HD 5670 good enough to run this or should I just grab it for 360?

    sig.gif
  • SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Probably good enough, it's an UE3 game after all. The min spec is like a 6800GT

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  • LitanyLitany Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    The processor speed requirement seems steep considering it's running off of UE3. What gives there?

    Steam: Litany || PSN: Litany- || Nintendo Network ID: Litany
  • l337CrappyJackl337CrappyJack Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Obsidian, that's what. Technical wizards capable of squeezing out the best performance from a game engine, they are not. I play their games pretty much solely for the writing; graphics, gameplay, all that stuff? Terrible. But the characterization and the storytelling is strong enough that I don't even care.

  • Rogueknight-Rogueknight- Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Spoit - Nice work on the OP, its good to have a proper opening to show people everything that is exciting us about this game.

    I'm getting excited now, just a month to go and I'm not sure whether to engage media blackout mode.

  • SannomSannom Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    Given how tight they keep any detail about the game, I wouldn't be afraid of any spoilers... the new PR agency makes a reasonably good job of keeping the game on the forefront and showing what the game is about, but we never got any important details about the story or the characters.

  • SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    I figure with how they've emphasized how changable the game ends up being depending on your choices that spoilers are not quite as big a problem as they'd otherwise be, since there's a chance that something may not even happen in your playthrough.

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  • widowsonwidowson Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Xagarath wrote: »
    This really has taken too long to come out.

    Unlike KOTOR2. And we know how that turned out.
    Spoiler:


    I have higher hopes for AP because Lucas and Co forced KOTOR2 out before it was ready, if I remember correctly. Obsidian wanted more time and were told no.

    However, they were told yes this time so it's already pre-ordered here.

    -I owe nothing to Women's Lib.

    Margaret Thatcher
  • DarkWarriorDarkWarrior __BANNED USERS
    edited April 2010
    They were forced to give it more time to change it not because they asked for it.

    ...it's in the shape of a giant c**k.
  • widowsonwidowson Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Oh, I'm planning to go professional/agressive and spurn every romance option.

    Anyone planning on going James Bond and hittin' everything that moves? :P

    -I owe nothing to Women's Lib.

    Margaret Thatcher
  • widowsonwidowson Registered User
    edited April 2010
    They were forced to give it more time to change it not because they asked for it.

    Ah. My mistake.

    -I owe nothing to Women's Lib.

    Margaret Thatcher
  • MongerMonger Hella Fuckin Smokey Dallas, TXRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    They were forced to give it more time to change it not because they asked for it.
    Actually, no. It seems that the game was pushed back for marketing reasons. Holiday season was too crowded.

    Which, ironically enough, is exactly the opposite of what happened to KotOR 2.

  • DarkWarriorDarkWarrior __BANNED USERS
    edited April 2010
    I seem to remember reading that focus groups didn't test it well so higher ups demanded changes.

    ...it's in the shape of a giant c**k.
  • Wet BanditWet Bandit Registered User
    edited April 2010
    Monger wrote: »
    They were forced to give it more time to change it not because they asked for it.
    Actually, no. It seems that the game was pushed back for marketing reasons. Holiday season was too crowded.

    Which, ironically enough, is exactly the opposite of what happened to KotOR 2.

    You have to be wary of that, though, because if a developer has a game pushed back, saying "it was for marketing reasons" sounds a lot better than "it wasn't good enough to release".

    I'm not saying anyone is or isn't lying or spinning, just that this stuff should be taken with a grain of salt, because there's obvious incentives for a company or a few people to not be totally truthful in a situation like this.

  • MongerMonger Hella Fuckin Smokey Dallas, TXRegistered User regular
    edited April 2010
    That's what the rumors were on these forums around the time it got pushed back because of that one Sega rep's comments.

    Pretty much everything I've heard from everywhere else is that they didn't want to get overshadowed during the holidays, and the release got delayed. I don't actually think there's much of anyone even working on it anymore. Most everyone at Obsidian seems to have moved on to New Vegas.

    edit: Honestly, I'd be thrilled if Sega decided to fund some more time in the cooker to make it the best game it can be. Unfortunately, that is not the impression I've gotten.

  • SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited April 2010
    The rumor was that they wanted to avoid Bioware's big titles. It was originally like the same week as Dragon Age, and supposedly they wanted to give ME2 a wide berth because of the superficial similarities (They're RPGS! and have Guns!). Maybe something about splinter cell too

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