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Thread: After years, played Deadly Shadows again and came to the conclusion: this game is ART

After years, played Deadly Shadows again and came to the conclusion: this game is ART

  1. #1

    Played Deadly Shadows again and came to the conclusion: this game is (abstract?) ART

    this time I approached the game with a more distant, general and unconditioned way of looking instead with my former, narrow-minded view which focused primarily on the gameplay mechanics.

    This time I didnt want to challange my thief-playing abilities, but just breath the atmosphere.





    And my conclusion is: from this point of view...this game is a piece of ART - more than Thief 1/2...because of consequent visual design.



    In my opinion, this game perfectionized the Thief-Atmosphere, because, while Thief 1/2 already were artistic in regard of sound-design, world-design and story, there was a lack of consequent visual-design.

    In DS, the story ITSELF is echoed in the art and atmosphere and vice versa. I never saw THAT IN ANY OTHER GAME OUT THERE.


    The visuals are reflecting a feeling of degeneration, momentariness, transience and perishability. I think these were major themes of Thief since the beginning but only DS visuals mirror this perfectly and I think this strengenths the rest in return, like some sort of feedback.
    Through it, the already existing elements gained perfection, the sum became greater than its parts and the whole package became a piece of Art through it.


    Even today, the feeling this principle creates is untouched by technical out-of-datenes, and thats something I cannot say about Thief1/2.


    Things I realized this time:


    1.
    Somehow, they managed that the mood of the whole game is reflected in every tiny, single, apperently unimported object, like cups or chairs. Maybe accomplished through consequent usage of the vinelike forms and patterns. I cannot remeber such a distinct, consequent art-design in Thief 1/2.

    Thief is one of the few fantasy games, which really succeeds in creating a USED UNIVERSE.
    Yes, there are dirt-stains and scratches in Oblivion, but there IT FEELS ARTIFICIAL, THERE IT´S JUST NOT THE SAME. Thats a feeling I cannot explain further, maybe others noticed the same, but thats something special, which I never expirienced in any other game. (and the fact that Oblivion is newer further strengthens my thesis that this has nothing to do which technology, therefore, this accomplishment would have been, in principle, manageable at the time of Thief1/2 as well.)


    Thief 1/2 used the same approach, but from a visual standpoint the texture and object design were far more generic.


    2.
    The color-usage is perfect: to see milky-yellow windows inside the silhouette of a dark building surrounded by a blueish/grey nightsky - this alone tells a story.
    This has nothing to do with technology, so Thief1/2 could have created the same in principle.


    3.
    The feeling that every single unimportant room in the game can tell a story on its own was also created by Thief1/2, but I think, again DS perfectionized this.


    4.
    What really fascinates me, is, that DS manages to create this dreamlike (sometimes nightmarish), surreal atmosphere in every corner of the game - even when there is no supernatural object on the screen.

    I think this is caused by the great mix of the alreasy mentioned consequent art-design and use of colors, together with the ambient-music and of course by the story, which itself is intensified through the other elements..and this is Art, because the effect is not decreased by the old engine. But I did not experience this in T1/2 nearly as intenely as in DS.

    5.
    Though hated by most Thief fans: I think from a visual standpoint even the blue fog, blue lights and HUD-Design-elements mirror the world´s themes. In my personal experience, even they added something to the atmosphere. So: by stopping to focus only on the gameplay mechanics, I dont wanna miss them now!




    There is only one other game out there, which Im aware of doing the same: BIOSHOCK.
    It´s success allows me to hope that game developers come back to ths principle.


    Maybe the following thesis is true: great art is (in some cases) dependant on sophisticated technology, but sophisticated technology alone never creates art.
    (for me, even at the time of it´s release Oblivion is a negative example for this statement.)
    ORDER AND CHAOS TRANSCENDER
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  2. #2
    I understand your love for the visuals of the game. See other statements contrary to yours of other users on the forum regarding it. I like the way you wrote, very nice, but however I keep my reserve to disagree. Good, but not excelent.
    Surripio ergo sunt.

  3. #3

    <..>

    There's so much hate for DS on these forums that is caused by rose colored glasses for TDP and TMA that it's ridiculous. Yes, TDS was 'consolized' in order to reach a larger audience and it hurt the control scheme and it had smaller levels due to that restriction, but that's the worst of it.
    TDP, to me, was the best storyline of the three, but the game I always replay is TDS. Why? It has such amazing atmosphere. The docks (especially the area by The Abysmal Gale) just fascinates me and I love just walking around there. The use of shadows in the Hammerite factory has the best shadows I've ever seen in a game. The Keeper Enforcers are wonderfully creepy, and i don't even need to discuss The Cradle.
    The game was not perfect, but neither were the first two. But there's no doubt that TDS is worthy of the series and deserves far more respect then it gets on these boards.

  4. #4
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    TDS had 3 colours. Dark blue, darker blue and the occasional orange-yellowish. This gave the impression that every location was in the same place because everything had the exact same colors. Only the overlook and the museum were a bit different because they had colorful wallpapers.

  5. #5
    if it art, than it is of a lesser sort than TDP and TMA.

    i agree with alot of what you say, but in varying degrees.
    "I should have expected trouble when the coffee failed to arrive"- Liet-Kynes

  6. #6
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    I found all this color in just the first mission in TDP. And the best thing about it all is that it's completely logical. Newer houses outside are made of red fired brick, older ones from stone. The basement walls are made of cheap stone and they're all full of mold. The servants' quarters are made of cheap grey stone that most of the buildings are made of, and the main area of the manor is made out of imported, fine stone, polished tile floors and colorful carpets. You can distinguish the wealth of the areas just by looking at the texture of the architecture. TDS has none of this. Everything is grey, and even if it wasn't it wouldn't make any difference because it's all tinted blue anyway.

  7. #7
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    Originally Posted by ThePacifist
    There's so much hate for DS on these forums that is caused by rose colored glasses for TDP and TMA that it's ridiculous. Yes, TDS was 'consolized' in order to reach a larger audience and it hurt the control scheme and it had smaller levels due to that restriction, but that's the worst of it.
    TDP, to me, was the best storyline of the three, but the game I always replay is TDS. Why? It has such amazing atmosphere. The docks (especially the area by The Abysmal Gale) just fascinates me and I love just walking around there. The use of shadows in the Hammerite factory has the best shadows I've ever seen in a game. The Keeper Enforcers are wonderfully creepy, and i don't even need to discuss The Cradle.
    The game was not perfect, but neither were the first two. But there's no doubt that TDS is worthy of the series and deserves far more respect then it gets on these boards.
    Emotional impact said it all. Fighting with the game to do what was simple in the older titles speaks volumes. You are just one more that dismisses the concerns, disappointments, and frustrations that TDS brought in larger numbers than he older titles. We don't see the older titles with rose-tinted glasses. We see TDS as not being able to live up to what made us fans to begin with. The very things that got us hooked are almost all lacking in TDS. And you are just one more person who looks at TDS with rose-tinted glasses and fails to see what we are actually saying, and fails to see what we say we liked about TDS. The problem is more on your side when we keep trying to convey for you what our perspective is--in detail and calm assertion--and you can't see it.

    We've told you "why." We've told you. It shouldn't surprise anyone that you can't see what's right there for you to see, in the games, and in our words. You have the blinders, and you are not capable of addressing the issues based on the information heaped upon you. TDS got many things right--the things they retained from the template laid down and expanded on. You cannot understand that it's the final ACT of a trilogy and like Phantom Menace was to Empire Strikes Back, the changes and innovations could not make up for the problems in continuity, and the steps forward cannot make up for the steps backward. If people like you weren't settling for less for mere appearances and higher-res resources, caring not for the depth of character and richness, and praising TDS beyond what it deserves--and asking "WHY?" when we've already answered that thousands of times over 5 years!--there would be no backlash.


    Yes. The game is art. I don't disagree. The brilliance of the creation that is Thief is palpable. The dedication to uniqueness was retained--compromised for a very different audience, with adverse affects rolling on and on, and now leading to desires for even further deviations and corruption of the soul of Thief, mislabeled as "innovation" and "progress".

    If you ever ask why again, you shoot yourself in the foot, and prove "us" right.




    Here's the something that is hard to dissect for you:
    The older titles hooked me instantly. They were different enough to require adjustment, but I thank LGS for making something with such care and a desire to escape the norms of the industry.
    TDS pissed me off before I was done with the The Blue Heron, offended me at the menu, and I was glad when the game pleasantly surprised me when something was done right and when the flavor of the first 2/3rds of the story came through in the last 1/3rd. It's been an acquired taste. That's one difference, but a powerful one...the first games are siblings that I love, TDS is a boorish cousin with some good traits once I get past the surface. They are all flawed, but even with people, some flaws are endearing or easily forgivable.




    The burning hate for TDS is fueled primarily by the TDS and mainstream console psychology of the fans. It's up to you o stop asking "Why?"

  8. #8
    Originally Posted by Platinumoxicity
    I found all this color in just the first mission in TDP. And the best thing about it all is that it's completely logical. Newer houses outside are made of red fired brick, older ones from stone. The basement walls are made of cheap stone and they're all full of mold. The servants' quarters are made of cheap grey stone that most of the buildings are made of, and the main area of the manor is made out of imported, fine stone, polished tile floors and colorful carpets. You can distinguish the wealth of the areas just by looking at the texture of the architecture. TDS has none of this. Everything is grey, and even if it wasn't it wouldn't make any difference because it's all tinted blue anyway.
    Awesome.




    Now where´s the Art?

    I dont see objects which tell a story - I just see objects.

    In my way of thinking, the artistic use of colors expresses moods. Actually the use of only a handful colors is what expresses mood. Color gradients and symmetry/continuity expresses aesthetic beauty (even in math thats the case), not a discontinues arbritrary color mix, only justified by material properties. Merely this is the case on your screens.

    The dominating blues and greys in DS tell a story about a cold, dead, but also ancient and primordial environment, the fluorescent greens speaks of mysticism/old-forces and sickly degeneration. In my opinon, this attributes, which are ranging far, wide and deep are more helpful in fleshing out a fictional setting, than the color-coded information wether the stone is imported or not....
    (just to show you that I´m not the only one with this way of thinking I bring the example of AC. It uses the same principle of atmospheric (continues) color-schemes.)




    (I´m quite aware that my comments may sound arbitrary. But thats the whole point, isnt it? Art, by definition cannot be rationalized. In my first post, I just described the feelings which DS caused in my perception, and T1/2 didnt.

    This was never meant as beeing a discussion but merely a personal statement/resumée.

    The screenshots you showed dont even come close to what I tried to express so apparently you missed my point. You have a different definition of art and we should stop to discuss about it immediately.

    But at least I hope, that through it you may realize that there are experiencers with other priority-sets as well and therefore defending it´s own with rational argumentation is inappropriate as hell. Accept the variety and stop rational arguing about subjective experience. DS was a life-changing experience for me. How can it be with all it´s design, issus? Maybe my personality contains the same design-issues and therefore DS resonates in me better than better-crafted games.... )
    ORDER AND CHAOS TRANSCENDER
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  9. #9
    When I was moving through the hallway of the "Blue Heron Inn" (1st mission), I did intuitively what I'd do in real life to minimize the silhouette, wall flattening and the atmosphere of the situation (moon light from windows and dust particles) just made it for me, that was great and I felt fully immersed.
    When I climbed through the window in a back room of the "Rutherford Castle" (2nd mission), Garrett said something like "Seems, nobody was here in a long time", the room (a room you put things in to collect dust) really felt dusty and like it wasn't used for some time, it felt like I was really there, priceless.
    Widow Moiras Mansion... awesome mission.

    I agree, that things looked a little to artistically, the overuse of the blue, the colours, the light rays from windows were slightly overused (still looked great), etc, but the visual aspect of the game was able to deliver a great atmosphere.
    For Thief4 I hope the developers take the same approach of visual immersion, but go the rather realistic route (more correct colours, etc), that would be great. You know, Thief1&2 had some great visuals too, I especially appreciate the grittier look. I want Thief4 to simply combine both aspects.


    On a sidenote, Thief3 was also good on the scary aspect. In Thief1&2 I couldn't take the zombies seriously, they were rather pathetic, but in Thief3 I was scared. The haunted Ship mission, I was scared to get even close to the resting zombies.

  10. #10
    Originally Posted by Psychomorph
    On a sidenote, Thief3 was also good on the scary aspect. In Thief1&2 I couldn't take the zombies seriously, they were rather pathetic, but in Thief3 I was scared. The haunted Ship mission, I was scared to get even close to the resting zombies.
    I agree on that. I didnt understand this for a while and I tried to analyze that too.

    I think the explanation is:

    Thief 1/2 only used a material approach in the conception of zombies. They may have only thought something like "how does a corpse look like" and "how would it move?" and combined that. It´s not really satisfactory, simply because there aren´t any RL associations.

    For DS I think they also added emotional components in its conception. Maybe they thought about RL things, which come for us emotionally close to zombification, things like oldness, sicness and insanity. Thats way they look and behave a bit like old, sic man. Thats way they are moaning like poor, suffering man. That catches us because it is something we are familiar with. And I think this emtional connection with reality is what makes this zombies far more immersive.
    ORDER AND CHAOS TRANSCENDER
    New science: www.amitgoswami.org

  11. #11
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    I've never played any other game where I've just wanted to stand around looking at the scenery and listening to the sounds. And as a bonus, these games encourage it in the sneaking gameplay. Having the editors allows me to fly around in these game-scapes and just appreciate how it was built, and see how they did it. Mark Lizotte, even though he didn't work on TDS, made sure to instill art appreciation in the LGS team, and they carried it over into TDS. The difference comes from a new art crew designing the appearance that wasn't part of the LGS crew. They used to have movie nights, where they would get together to watch movies that had the aesthetics they wanted to imbue in the game. They derived much from some heavy novels. These things left a mark on them and they've carried it over to the games they made after the fact. They tapped into some serious art and literature. They were MIT students, several of whom all lived together in one tenement. It was a cauldron of brilliant minds and wildly different characters, all of whom had a serious deep influence on the games. As an artist myself, I can't not call these master-works "Art". Art and Craft. The Cradle was built with nothing taken for granted. Everything had a reason and a backstory. Jordan "null" Thomas credited Randy Smith for his horror expertise, input, and design making the Cradle as effective as it was. Randy took what he'd learned from making The Haunted Cathedral/Return to the Cathedral, and applied it to the Cradle, and it wasn't just the Brother Murus/Lauryl scavenger hunt puzzle.

    An anagram of "The Cradle" is "CATHEDREL"--yeah, it's misspelled.

  12. #12
    Well, my empiric knowledge reflected upon the term of art is kind of narrow. However, I shall make a little comment now based on it. The immersion of a game is the crossroad between sound, visual, AI behavior, game-play. The part evoked by this topic is specifically the visual, more exactly the architecture of the levels. As said here, the pallets in T1 and T2 evoke a contrasted world,more realistic, with a lot of subtle meaning and hints at history, social statuses, economy, fashion (the exotique). Thief 3 had the world turned in one mass of gray cobblestone. My nearest parallel is made with modern abstract art (as we are already making comparisons with paintings). The problem with modern art is the vagueness itself, the obvious lack of effort putt in it, and the comments that seem to flown in favorably against all normal logic. The exact multitude of properties given/inspired by a specific thing and the use of a very small palette of them gives a more stereotypical character, thus lessens the experience of "feeling" the said piece of art. I do not deny the status of art of Thief 3, tough the 3rd person movement made me stop replaying it in favor of Thief 2. Even in history, even the most subjective statement is important, every thing gets counted. There is no bad piece of art, just an expression of a certain time.
    And I ask you people in general: do you prefer an architecture that reflects several key aspects of a place and time, or a symbolist architecture where colors are set to give away a certain mood?
    As an adept of the realistic movement I like to see symbols upon symbols, a multi-layered environment that is subtle, yet rich in itself.
    And yet again, I mention that I do not intend to pick on anyone, Merely expressing my belief based upon the common knowledge. (let's face it, you have to study hard in order to funny understand a certain field)
    Surripio ergo sunt.

  13. #13
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    Originally Posted by Limesneeker
    Awesome.
    Blabla etc.
    I wasn't trying to refute your claim that TDS is art. I'm jsut expressing my dissappointment in the overall look of TDS. the missions were set in different areas right? They weren't in the same building built by the same company. They were in fact pretty far from eachother they were spread everywhere in the City (1 block area.) Some of them were as far as 100m apart! Okay, enough sarcasm about the size of the levels.

    My point was that because of the color choices in TDS, it felt like everything was in the same area. Everything was tinted blue, so everything must've been somewhere in "Blueville". this effect was even increased by the fact that the City hub was small. The devs should have chosen a certain artistic approach for each different area, like having different architecture styles and weathers and such. The docks could've had thick mist, ocean winds and waves, Auldale could've had wide streets and high-rise buildings made of white stone with large windows. The clocktower could've had a 3d "skybox" with a view of the City to give the impression that it's actually a tower instead of a multi-storey basement. Old buildings could've been made of big, moldy stones, and newer ones from fired bricks. We didn't see any building made of fired bricks in TDS? Was that building material suddenly banned after T2?

    -The main issue is that TDS just had too little color. So little in fact that it made everything seem even smaller than it was.

  14. #14
    Originally Posted by kabatta
    Well, my empiric knowledge reflected upon the term of art is kind of narrow. However, I shall make a little comment now based on it. The immersion of a game is the crossroad between sound, visual, AI behavior, game-play. The part evoked by this topic is specifically the visual, more exactly the architecture of the levels. As said here, the pallets in T1 and T2 evoke a contrasted world,more realistic, with a lot of subtle meaning and hints at history, social statuses, economy, fashion (the exotique). Thief 3 had the world turned in one mass of gray cobblestone. My nearest parallel is made with modern abstract art (as we are already making comparisons with paintings). The problem with modern art is the vagueness itself, the obvious lack of effort putt in it, and the comments that seem to flown in favorably against all normal logic. The exact multitude of properties given/inspired by a specific thing and the use of a very small palette of them gives a more stereotypical character, thus lessens the experience of "feeling" the said piece of art. I do not deny the status of art of Thief 3, tough the 3rd person movement made me stop replaying it in favor of Thief 2. Even in history, even the most subjective statement is important, every thing gets counted. There is no bad piece of art, just an expression of a certain time.
    And I ask you people in general: do you prefer an architecture that reflects several key aspects of a place and time, or a symbolist architecture where colors are set to give away a certain mood?
    As an adept of the realistic movement I like to see symbols upon symbols, a multi-layered environment that is subtle, yet rich in itself.
    And yet again, I mention that I do not intend to pick on anyone, Merely expressing my belief based upon the common knowledge. (let's face it, you have to study hard in order to funny understand a certain field)
    Interesting. What you wrote expands my knowledge of art as well. Well, it´s strange.
    I always thought that I my preference is actually that of a multi-layered-symbols upon symbols-structure. But apperantly I´m more into the opposite of abstract vagueness. Interesting.

    Well I think my point is: the realistic multi layered design of T2 you speak of always felt to me like having loose ends, beeing discontiously fragmented, like a rag rug. I think I prefer art which is some kind of self-contained, gradual wholeness, which for me may be the mess of cobblestones you speak of .
    (And the omnipresent blue tint is the fundamental note of the composition, so to speak)

    @Platinumoxicity:

    Interesting. That would mean the main issue is what I liked most. Damn, call me crazy I even liked the narrowness, really. (Of course, I also understand your preference of big levels, but even the narrowness created atmosphere for me, as it supports the mystic mood through the question "what may be behind?" )
    ORDER AND CHAOS TRANSCENDER
    New science: www.amitgoswami.org

  15. #15
    Oh, well...you know what they say: beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.
    Surripio ergo sunt.

  16. #16
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    Originally Posted by Limesneeker
    Interesting. That would mean the main issue is what I liked most. Damn, call me crazy I even liked the narrowness, really. (Of course, I also understand your preference of big levels, but even the narrowness created atmosphere for me, as it supports the mystic mood through the question "what may be behind?" )
    No, it's not the "main" issue. I mean, Dayport is a rather wealthy district, and it had 8-storey highrise apartments and office buildings, wide streets and rich architecture. Auldale in TDS didn't look any wealthier than the rest of the City.

  17. #17
    The pervasive blue didn't make me feel like every area was the same. It added some lighting consistency, if anything. If TDS was interpreting moonlight as blue and purple, then it was consistent. All the moonlight in TDP and TMA was gray and silver, so they had a similar proclivity (if you even want to consider it that. I personally don't).

    The only difference that I see is that Deadly Shadows had this very flowy, Art Nouveau slant to the art design where The Metal Age had more of an Art Deco look. I don't think one game is more artistic in its approach than the other, they just took different visual paths.
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  18. #18
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    Yes. Different paths, without any continuity, which is a mistake for one story to have the last third strikingly and oddly different. It's the gap. Generalizing it as merely different approaches doesn't look at it for what it is. The blue and magenta (and all the colored lighting) overwhelmed and monochromed everything, and was even in places the moonlight could not reach if it was moonlight. The color of the lighting made all the different textures look the same when the eye wasn't focused on a detail. The aesthetic of TDS stripped out the richness and warmth and varied character of adjacent spaces.



    Plat': How you decorate your home tells stories about you, even if they are incorrect. It speaks to your character, not just the mood of color. If you designed your home, had it built to your specifications, it tells something else about you. It's all abstract, but it plays on the imagination, mostly subconsciously. Creating a shape, a solid, and the shape of the space around the shape, then applying color, is not so different than sculpting and painting. The mindset of crafting and coloring an interactive 3D sculpture, painting it, and lighting it, all framed with the edges of your monitor, is approached artistically. Adding elements such as AIs, composed music, crafted sounds, threats of monsters, and traps, all require artistic creativity, and it is meant to induce emotion, impression, and work upon your perceptions of things, discover yourself, and this is art.

  19. #19
    While TDS ofcoarse had higher resolution textures, for me, personally, that was about it. TDP/TMA posessed textures and artwork, as well as engravings in the stonework which were CONTEMPORARY.


    I could stare at the carvings in the stone walls in the bonehoard for ages, and just be amazed. Be it of the texture patterns which resembled bearded faces, or the heads of devils.


    The Pagan eye symbol carvings, or the mosaic, brightly coloured stained glass patterns in Hammerite areas. The change in mood when travelling from a dark damp basement, filled with varying shades of grey,


    suddenly changing into a feeling of warmth and comfort when emerging in room with a cream coloured carpet and saffron coloured walls, with a peculiar painting of a hammerite banishing a winged, devil like minion of the trickster.The purple-ish table on which a goblet stood.


    Sneaking across the checkered floor into a room with green walls, with a goldish filling running through the centre,and a wooden floor, with a blue and gold chest, hanging from a checkered ceiling,


    only to look up and take notice of the perfectly placed dining room table in the center of the room, hanging upside down, with a door beside it, leading to an empty black void, with stars flickering in the distance,


    and a single stone path, littered with tiny blue gemstones, leading toward a dense forest-like passage in the middle of a hallway with perfectly human guards,


    behaving as if everything was normal, guarding a fiery sword, suspended above the room, yet held in place by thin air.

    My descriptive writing sucks big time, but I hope you get the point.TDS on the other hand, was like watching a black and white (blue and grey) film, with few rooms in the tiny levels dotted with a brighter orange hue.


    It gave me a sense of boredom rather than wonder.But thats just me...

  20. #20
    The first Thief game i played through was TDS, sure my friend had shown me TDP on his computer and I remember playing the training mission but I was horrible at typing and was constantly frustrated by the keyboard. I own TDS for my 360 and that is what got me into the Thief series. I have since my first attempt at TDP learned how to type and I am just searching for the best place to buy it now. So I can't as of yet compare the games yet but TDS worked wonderfully on the 360 at least. I keep hearing others describe the controls as "blocky" perhaps on the PC? So maybe there are others here like me who started their Thief experience with Deadly Shadows and if it has hooked us onto Thief then it can't be an all bad Thief game...
    "This city could do with more red." "That's our lives your talking about!" "I'll probably be horrified once I'm sober."

  21. #21
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    Very few have called it "all bad".


    This inability to see what's said, how often, and by how many, is a bad sign for your guys' enjoyment of the older titles. To say TDS got you into Thief is a misstatement if it only got you into TDS--the last third of a full story. And that's not commentary about what defines Thief fandom, but of accuracy in what is being said there about TDS getting one into Thief.

  22. #22
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    TDS looked good, I particularly liked the lighting (ie the lightning in Moira's) but I too question the colour palette. Remember the original Quake? 40 shades of brown.

  23. #23
    Originally Posted by razorstealth
    ...I have since my first attempt at TDP learned how to type and I am just searching for the best place to buy it now....
    razorstealth, here's a link where you can get the complete collection of all 3 games (with Thief Gold in place of TDP )
    Bargain

  24. #24
    Originally Posted by ThePacifist
    rose colored glasses for TDP and TMA
    Wrong. Rose coloured glasses implies we're remembering "the good old days" or some such; that we're thinking TDP and TMA were better than they really were.

    That's not the case, because most of us still play TDP, TMA, or both on a regular basis, and thus can easily compare them to modern games and see which is better.
    A rod of iron, in the flame, is transfigured and is no more.
    Thou canst never return unchanged from the forge.

  25. #25
    One of the best easily accessible discusions on art and value, subjective and objective is to be found in Robert Pirsigs "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values"
    While this book has become almost a cultural cliché, it is genuinely superb and deserves to be read.

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