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Ack
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Ack Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:40 pm

Menegrothx wrote:
I was told that From Dusk till Dawn is a good vampire movie. However all I saw was some psychotic bank robbers on a road trip so I left the theatre after 30 boring minutes had passed. Talk about false advertising. This movie sucks.

- Roger Ebert


If that is his interpretation based on 30 minutes of the film, then it is his interpretation and he has every right to think it. And while I don't think it would make for a very professional review in a major newspaper or magazine, he would be more than welcome to come onto this forum and state his opinion based on his experience.

Also, your behavior is beginning to appear intentionally antagonistic.
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Menegrothx Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:44 pm

I'm not antagonistic, I'm just pointing out by way of example why you can't judge a story before you've seen/read/played it from start to finish. Why that particular example? Because the first and second halves of From Dusk Till Dawn are completely different from each other, so you can't really "extrapolate" what the rest of the film is going to be like just by seeing the first half of it.
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Ack Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:47 pm

Menegrothx wrote:I'm not antagonistic, I'm just pointing out by way of example why you can't judge a story before you've seen/read/played it from start to finish


But here's the thing: you can. You may not have the entire story, but you can pass judgement on how it is being presented, how it has been paced, how it was written up to that point, and so forth. A limited experience of it may still be enough to impart ideas about style, theme, and even moral.
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Menegrothx Thu Oct 31, 2013 7:01 pm

Maybe so, but you'll miss out the best parts of the movie/book/game. Usually it's just a few key moments that make a story great. And you need those mundane parts of the story to give meaning and context to those key moments. If you only play the mundane parts, you'll never get to see how good the story gets and you won't understand why it is great when people hype it. And likewise if you take some of those key moments out of context, they aren't that great when you're missing out the events leading up to that point. And that's what's so harmful. When people who haven't seen the good parts of the story start going around saying "oh it's so overrated, I played it and it wasn't all that good, don't trust those people who say it's a great story".
Ack wrote:A limited experience of it may still be enough to impart ideas about style, theme, and even moral.

Not if the story has a twist that changes everything (see From dusk till Dawn).
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Ack Thu Oct 31, 2013 7:16 pm

Menegrothx wrote:Maybe so, but you'll miss out the best parts of the movie/book/game. Usually it's just a few key moments that make a story great. And you need those mundane parts of the story to give meaning and context to those key moments. If you only play the mundane parts, you'll never get to see how good the story gets and you won't understand why it is great when people hype it. And likewise if you take some of those key moments out of context, they aren't that great when you're missing out the events leading up to that point. And that's what's so harmful. When people who haven't seen the good parts of the story start going around saying "oh it's so overrated, I played it and it wasn't all that good, don't trust those people who say it's a great story".
Ack wrote:A limited experience of it may still be enough to impart ideas about style, theme, and even moral.

Not if the story has a twist that changes everything (see From dusk till Dawn).


I've seen From Dusk Till Dawn, and the truth is, context clues led me to expect something terrible was going to happen before the monsters even showed up. Yes, major plot points may be missed, but if a story is well crafted, there will be context clues and foreshadowing to influence the story and drive the plot to its ultimate end, and the person experiencing the media only partially will still pick up on these subtle clues.

Furthermore, a few key moments do not necessarily make for a great story. A story that focuses on a few exciting and interesting key set pieces is not a great story if everything between those set pieces is drab and uninspiring. A truly great story experience builds, either tension or excitement, and a person experiencing only a piece of it should detect that build.

Since it seems so much of the focus of this has been on Deus Ex, let's focus on how that story builds: yes, there are important points late in the game that do not appear early on. But the building of the story starts with the beginning, on the first island, as you learn more not only by communicating with others, but also by seeking out newspapers, emails, and other important information artifacts which help build a back story to the world. And I can understand why some folks dislike the way the story was presented, because a)a lot of this information is redundant, and b)a lot of it has to be sought out. I've beaten the game multiple times, and continued the story in both the sequel and prequel, and all of these games require this intentional interaction to get the full story. I can also see people arguing against presenting a story this way, because it can easily become confusing, especially considering that this was an early example of this kind of storytelling, where the idea is not yet refined.
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Menegrothx Thu Oct 31, 2013 8:09 pm

Ack wrote:I've seen From Dusk Till Dawn, and the truth is, context clues led me to expect something terrible was going to happen before the monsters even showed up.

It's been some time since I saw the movie, but from what I recall, before they reached the bar, there was no way you could tell that there would be vampires in the movie. While they were still on the US side of border, it was a crime/thriller type of movie with no signals or clues that it would suddenly become a monster movie instead.
Ack wrote:Furthermore, a few key moments do not necessarily make for a great story. A story that focuses on a few exciting and interesting key set pieces is not a great story if everything between those set pieces is drab and uninspiring.

No, but it's those few key moments where there's a lot of symbolism going on that really make people think that Silent Hill 2 and Deus Ex are thoughtfully written.

And Silent Hill 2 still doesn't make fully sense until you've seen the ending.
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Re: Together Retro: ZAMN / Silent Hill 2

by Ack Fri Nov 01, 2013 10:38 am

Menegrothx wrote:
Ack wrote:I've seen From Dusk Till Dawn, and the truth is, context clues led me to expect something terrible was going to happen before the monsters even showed up.

It's been some time since I saw the movie, but from what I recall, before they reached the bar, there was no way you could tell that there would be vampires in the movie. While they were still on the US side of border, it was a crime/thriller type of movie with no signals or clues that it would suddenly become a monster movie instead.


Maybe not, but you can definitely get the feel that something is going to go terribly wrong.

Menegrothx wrote:
Ack wrote:Furthermore, a few key moments do not necessarily make for a great story. A story that focuses on a few exciting and interesting key set pieces is not a great story if everything between those set pieces is drab and uninspiring.

No, but it's those few key moments where there's a lot of symbolism going on that really make people think that Silent Hill 2 and Deus Ex are thoughtfully written.

And Silent Hill 2 still doesn't make fully sense until you've seen the ending.


Not necessarily. Silent Hill 2 has its symbolism spread throughout the game. Even the enemy designs take the story and themes into account. So do certain weapon animations. For Deus Ex, you also have the symbolism in level design even from the beginning. Heck, practically the first thing you see is the destroyed Statue of Liberty! And to make matters worse, the UN has moved in and set up shop there. That's an incredibly potent symbol for the themes of the game.

And admittedly even some of the SH2 endings don't really clear things up.
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