This is a really great example of point-by-point feedback, and it's the kind of summary that's super useful to the developers for future games. Thanks for taking such care in putting this together!
Also, the discussion in this thread, IMO, is great. Pointing out what features you like and don't like, as well as contrasting past games, is very useful.
I agree with the others. ESPECIALLY about night and day changing on it's own making a return.
There are ways to show the character of a city without deterring players from their own creativity and personal adventures around the city as Spider-Man. I can't help but to agree that, while it's fun and engaging in terms of story, it's distracting when half of the city is on fire. Or if you are forced to deal with different situations, enemies, or mini-games.
As a player, say I want to swing around a calm and peaceful looking Manhattan, taking on less destructive enemies? How would I know where to save the game, so that I'm not in a symbiote/virus dominated wasteland, on my first playthrough? It would be impossible.
Though someone mentioned a very good alternative. I believe it was Tim that mentioned weather changes and festivals/holidays and I agree.
For example, the game could be broken down into 3 months that are separated by several segments.
Segment 1: Early October
Clear skies, pedestriants wear normal clothes. Light jackets and hoods. Daylight lasts longer. Casual car types, such as sports cars to trucks.
Segment 2: Halloween
Clear or cloudy skies. Pedestriants wear normal clothes during the day. Not all, but many pedestrians are seen in costumes, at night, as you swing. Adults, teens and kids. (This isn't GTA, I don't know why kids have been left out of the game since Spider-Man 2). All times of day last equally.
Segment 3: The Early November
Sometimes rainy, sometimes cloudy, sometimes clear. Pedestriants now wear heavier clothing. Sunset lasts the longest, but it gets darker sooner. A lot of foilage everywhere. You begin to lightly see Spider-Man's breath.
Segment 4: Late November
The game could be programmed to snow VERY rarely. Mostly heavy rain, light rain and clouds. Night lasts longest. Leaves are mostly gone from trees, and pedestrians wear very thick clothing. No sport cars are seen after this point. The roads are only trucks, suvs, sedans, vans, and taxis. Thanksgiving decorations are sometimes seen.
Segment 5: Early December
Snow and cloudy skies. Very rarely clear sky. Pedestrians wear thick coats and boots. Night lasts very long. Leaves gone from trees. Spider-Man's breath is very visible.
Segment 6: Holiday Season
Christmas, Hannukah, and "Happy Holiday" signs are all around the city. Snow is permanently on the ground and on rooftops. The lakes are frozen over in Central Park. (Spidey can slide across them) Weather is snow, cloudy skies or clear skies. Pedestrians have very thick coats and boots. Day lasts longer. However night has more visible stars. Trucks, suvs, vans and special city trucks(salt trucks, snow removal) are the traffic.
^Something like that would defeinitely make the character of the city shine through without forcing the player to react to a city in chaos. Though, there could still be themed events that are concurrent with the segments. Like Hobgoblin, Demogoblin or Doppleganger showing up around Halloween. Some sort of Black Cat, Kingpin or J. Jonah Jameson related event during Holiday Season. And maybe some sort of slower-paced "family" gameplay during Late November; involving MJ, Harry, Aunt May, Gwen, Dewolfe, Chang, etc.
This, a thousand times this.
And I don't mind when a certain area of the city is altered to fit to a mission. I remember the final mission from Spider-Man 3 at the construction side. There could be something like this for certain boss fights with a lot of news vehicles gathered around it and pedestrians standing (safe distance) watching the chaos. Whenever I think of the Green Goblin (in a game) I hope for a mission that takes place on a bridge with cars wrecked, pedestrians running towards the city and cops trying to find a way through the chaos to stop the GG from causing any more harm. You could use web rush to aim at "flying" vehicles that are about to hit the water to stick them to the bridge just like Spider-Man did in the movie (maybe make it harder by having a 50/50 chance that there are still peds inside and a small quicktime event).
And I am totally for the family-event gameplay. TASM should not be about Spider-Man only, there should be atleast 1/3 of the game dealing with Peter Parker related stuff. I want to suddenly be reminded that I have to go visit Gwen or Aunt May somewhere or that they celebrate thanksgiving and I am invited. I would like to be able to initiate these missions by droping by Gwens apartment (where she lives with her family?) in order to go have diner with her somewhere or go to the cinema or whatever. I would also love it if the school would make an appearance (enterable?). But the most important thing is free control over when I want to wear the suit while freeroaming and when not (like swing around with Gwen as Peter Parker, just like in the movie).
Oh and before I forget it, link the suit repair to the closet or make it an option somewhere in the apartment. I absolutely hated it that my suit was automatically repaired every time I entered the apartment...
You could optionally also map out a part of Queens and have Aunt Mays house serve as your hideout?
Weather and day/night changes in the environment would be nice but the "family-event" gameplay would be a very tricky matter because unless it serves some sort of key purpose to the narrative then there really is no point to including it in the game. It reminds me of the so-called "side missions" in Grand Theft Auto 4 like having to take "friends" bowling, going out to eat with your "girlfriend" or better yet watch tv. This stuff sounds good on paper but in the actual game it was beyond useless and unfortunate that in a game about being a criminal this was the best Rockstar could come up with for playable side missions. Unless joining Aunt May for dinner or taking Gwen/Mary Jane on a date served some purpose to the narrative (Gwen/Mary Jane get abducted or you have to protect Aunt May from villains) then it could work. But if it became a routine part of the gameplay to have to run errands as Peter Parker then this would get very tedious over time. I'm not saying that the developers shouldn't include a small part of Peter Parker's normal life into the gameplay but I would rather have them focus on more creative things to do as Spiderman. The plausible way to include a part of Parker's normal life into gameplay is by either adding photo-op missions (which we already have) or having timed races to have to meet Aunt May/Gwen/Mary Jane (which were in Spiderman 2) and the timed races got old really fast. Walking around town as Peter Parker going to get a bite to eat or going to see a movie don't have a concrete purpose in terms of "gameplay". In a game about being able to stick to walls, beat-up bad guys and swing from buildings why would you want to do anything that you already do in the real world.
Also the whole thing of being able to change your costume at anytime is a neat concept and one that I've thought about before however that too has it's own set of complications. Since spidey's identity is a secret he can't just change appearance right in the middle of the street so there would have to be specially marked areas where he could change outfits. However you would have to depower him because he can't just jump 50 ft into the air, stick to a wall and start webslinging otherwise that defeats the purpose of changing costume. And even if you did do that then there's still the problem that I mentioned earlier of the need to walk around as a normal dude when you would rather just play as the superhero. If the only way to perform the photo-op missions was to change into Peter Parker then the whole being able to "change identities" mechanic would have a purpose.
I'm not trying to rag on any of these ideas I'm just trying to point out the complex nature of trying to integrate these real world dynamics into gameplay when they have questionable purposes. Not too mention that the time and effort the developers put into making something like that is going to take away from the time they could of spent making gameplay for "spiderman". Sort of like what happened with Grand Theft Auto 4, the time Rockstar spent enabling players to go bowling, watch tv, and go out on dates took away from them being able to make better side missions (rob a bank at anytime, street race at any time, etc.)
Thanks. And I like your guys ideas too. TNHS, I know you're not being argumenative, you have valid concerns. I just think it would be very easy to add Peter related events that are also fun for the player. This is just an example but something like this:
You could have several areas around Manhattan that Spider-Man can change into Peter or vice versa. The icon is a bookbag made out of webbing, and both Peter and Spidey have different movement. Peter would play like a civilian. Needing to catch a taxi or train, and not being able to swing or use powers. In fact, disasters don't show up on the map. So if Peter is in a place where something crazy is happening, it could even shock the player.
When you play as Spider-Man random crimes, random villain encounters, the missions, etc appear on screen. When you play as Peter you have different goals:
If you turn into Peter you can talk to friends and family. Aunt May, MJ, Gwen, Chang, Harry are available at their apartments or certain locations. These characters give hints to Peter/Player1 regarding the game. So for example..
As Spider-Man, you need to find 3 hidden bombs throughout the city. If you change into Peter and talk to Whitney Chang, she'll say she saw some men in black ski masks carrying something large into Soho.
These missions would be the only way Peter would get a specific notice on the map of a crime or event. And you have to catch a taxi or train to get there. You can only do them as Parker. The photo missions give you points to buy or unlock moves, better cameras for Pete, costumes, upgraded web fluid. See Upgrades..
As I said in another post: MJ, Gwen, Whitney Chang, or Felicia Hardy should be up to the player, who they date. The pay off would be interesting character-based mini-games and an end goal result, instead of boring "bowling" levels. MJ wants you to take pictures of her (she's a model). Gwen wants you to swing her around and do specific tricks (like in the movie). Chang wants insider photos of villains so you'd get specific missions where a classic villain is attacking, and Peter (as a civilian) has to get photos and then fight them. Felicia wants you to do missions with her or race her.
Then the rewards:
-MJ (You unlock the classic comic Red/Blue suit)
-Gwen (You unlock House of M suit)
-Felicia (You unlock the classic comic black suit)
-Chang (You unlock Mangaverse Spider-Man)
Peter starts off with a crappy camera, and then as you unlock more points from other photos, you can buy a better camera with more features and clearer picture. As I mentioned earlier, you could have costumes, web upgrades, fighting upgrades, even things like in SM2 that let you do cool aerial maneuvers or slick poses. Like being able to hang upside down from a lightpost or something.
Yeah! Like:"A building is on fire! Find an alley to change into Spider-man within 30 seconds.....so noone can see you and then save the day!" That would be some sorts of cool!!
If you can hang around as Peter,and when you want you can go and change into Spidey.......awesome staff.....(hope beenox isn't making the second game.....AND hope the next Spider game is comic book based....whitch is unlikely,concidering that the movie is coming out 2014...so is the game)
And i dissagree on the "upgrade" of the web-yoyo....this must be free from the start of the game.....freakin' trademark!! like in SM3!
Also i dont think the game will have the classic suit.....cause the movie suit is gonna be the classic one....(i read they are changing it...)
Also....they know what House of M is???.....
The game had costume like Scarlet Spider 2012 and FF.....the current suits are ,idk, 2 years old?.....(yes....i underestemate them.....)
When you put it like that the Parker related missions could work, Peter's out with friends/family, chaos ensues, Peter has to sneak off to an area to change suits without being spotted and then saves everyone. Also the "dating" mechanic could work if there was a reward for unlockable costumes and the tasks you had to perform were simple mini-games that provide a change of pace from the usual "hero stuff". As long as there's a reasonable amount of those "dates" and not 20 or something missions you have to complete just to unlock the costume. The photo missions could work really well with the stealth gameplay of ASM by making them into a sort of recon-op. For example Peter uses his normal apperance to get inside a heavily guarded lair such as Oscorp and has to gather intelligence on his enemies by wall crawling about and taking pictures. That would give the Parker missions some bit of interest aside from just having to change costumes or engage in mini-games.
By the way, catching a taxi or train wouldn't be necessary or fun when you'd rather web swing/parkour across the New York rooftops. (For anyone who's played Grand Theft Auto 4 riding in a taxi was one of the most boring things you could ever have in video game).
Whoa...I'm behind. Let me catch up!!
" Also the "dating" mechanic could work if there was a reward for unlockable costumes and the tasks you had to perform were simple mini-games that provide a change of pace from the usual "hero stuff". As long as there's a reasonable amount of those "dates" and not 20 or something missions you have to complete just to unlock the costume"
Yeah. The way I viewed it in my head was like there are maybe 20 dates with each girl. However only five of them are mandatory to obtain her as your girlfriend and to be rewarded the costume. And even having a girlfriend is optional to begin with. Just a change of pace.
"By the way, catching a taxi or train wouldn't be necessary or fun when you'd rather web swing/parkour across the New York rooftops. (For anyone who's played Grand Theft Auto 4 riding in a taxi was one of the most boring things you could ever have in video game)."
I understand, but I disagree. I feel like giving Peter the option to catch a train or taxi makes the trains and taxis in the game feel much more important. It's also an interaction with the city that makes it feel real. Why should I care about a taxi being tossed by a villain in the game? BUT, if that taxi has a taxi driver who said, "Hey, you're Peter Parker. You have some very nice photos, young man. Photography has got to be expensive, you only have to pay me half!", then I'd actually get angry when Doctor Octopus throws his taxi at me, and that nice driver almost dies.
And the taxi/subway would work like Sonic Adventure or Saints Row, where you only see the character get in. You don't have to watch the entire ride. However, it's a great way to get some camera shots as Peter.
"They should also add realistic physics and webs attaching to buildings/structures."
Why not? They had it attach in SM2, right? Future games of ANY series should be progressions of what came before them, not purposefully separate and different at the expense of players. Many players care about the webs attaching, some players don't. So wouldn't it make more sense to make webs attach, since the players who won't care won't mind anyway?
Literally every word this man said I agree with in that post. That was beautifully written and strikes a perfect synch with what I've felt about Spider-Man games. And I also love your idea about clock work. Your clock work idea is similar to a concept I've been pushing for that I call "Random Villain Encounters".
RVE's would work like this: You are swinging along as Spider-Man and suddenly your spider-sense goes off and you're alerted of trouble downtown. On your way, cops finally get called and they're driving there too. (You used Shocker as an example, so I'll stick with that but it could be anyone), Shocker is breaking into a lab. (Maybe reuse an interior location from story-mode for the lab)...And you fight. His reasoning, and what he's stealing would be up to the player. It would be like Pulp Fiction, where he has a briefcase, and the player never sees inside.
However, your idea was to have story behind it. It's a cool idea, but they can only randomize so much before you start seeing the same things over and over again. I'd rather the villains stick to the routine of "None of your bussiness, Webhead!"
But, a way to add story without them talking about it could be that if you lose this random boss fight, then he'll be with another villain next time. So you have to fight two bosses simaltaneously to make up for your previous failure. This could continue up to the sixth loss. So if you lose six RVE's, you'd have to face a random Sinister Six. It wouldn't be the same six each time, like in the comics, but it would make the game have infinite replay value.
"Spiderman 2 was great and all but honestly those random crimes got to be extremely repetitive after about the first month considering there were only about 5 or 6 of them. What it seems like you're suggesting is that the next spidey game should basically add story driven dlc or just the unlimited crimes with bosses. "
True. However, SM2 also had about 5 civilians. With updated graphics and randomized civilians, it could feel different through slight variations. Yes, another rooftop is being broken into...But this time there's a hostage. Or this time there's an entire gang instead of one crook. Maybe the crook does leparkour and is trying to run? Maybe instead of one crook, it's a RVE, and it's say....Morbius!? Maybe you didn't get there until it was too late, and when you get to the roof a worried mother tells you her child has been kidnapped. So you have to go find the kid and bring him/her back to that rooftop. Small variations, that are possible with modern tech would make the city feel alive!
"Not sure the whole "clock work" thing would work considering it didn't work out in ASM since the unlockable costumes weren't supposed to be available until certain dates of this year but the community figured out a simple way to bypass that within the first week of release. "
No offense to the company, but I don't think it's a good business practice to make people wait for things that they expect right away. You ever go to a game or concert that gets delayed? Go to diner only to have to wait EXTRA long just to be served? Ever buy a Spider-Man game where the most classic costumes aren't even in the game, and the ones that are supposedly can't even be unlocked until months later? No one likes that.
"Clockwork" events are different though. And I think 'The Entity of Wert' is correct. You visit Harry in his apartment and don't come back for two months and he says "Jesus, Parker! I thought we were friends, I haven't seen or heard from you in months!!!" or if you're dating Gwen and she says "If it weren't for the news showing your heroics, I'd think you were seeing another woman. I know you have to do this Pete. And I support you, but can you stop in to see me every once in a while?"
"The topic of DLC characters"
If they're going to include playable characters, it should be characters that fans really like. No offense, but who HONESTLY cares about playing as Rhino? I'm not saying it wasn't a fun experience for those who liked it or that people didn't enjoy it. I'm asking who wanted him before that? Stan Lee was a cool thing, and for the Spider-Man anniversary it was fitting. However the last Spider-Man game where Venom (true Venom, not a black version of Hulk), was playable? Maximum Carnage. Here's some characters that I'm pretty sure nobody would complain about:
-Venom: Black suit, red tongue, green spit, white fangs, white classic spider. The Classic Venom. Not a variation, not an alternate costume. Venom. Plays similar to Spider-Man, but can hurt people or not. If you choose to go after villains, you're fine. If you hurt too many people, Spider-Man appears and you have to fight him.
-Black Cat: Robbing banks and running from cops. It's like a mini game of cops and robbers. Her apartment/skyloft would be "base". You have to stealthily break into museums or banks and when you do a timer starts before the police or Spider-Man get there. You can fight or run from spider-man. If you make it to base before he catches you and depletes your health, you win.
-Carnage: Your goal is to incite as much chaos as you can. Flipping cars, fighting police and causing chaos causes riots. The more riots that form, the more lawless NYC becomes. If you beat the police and Spider-Man....Maximum Carnage!
-InFamou--I mean Electro: Come on...do I have to explain how this would play?
Very unique awesome idea. I love The Walking Dead. It's as good as the show in different ways. In fact, it's like watching it's own show. I watched all of the episodes on Youtube as if it was a movie.
I think that's a really good idea for a DLC character, not so much for the main game. Not everyone has XboxLive, and people that purchase a game, want a game. Spider-Man's story should be included. However if we get to play as Black Cat as well, that would be kind of cool for episodic DLC for her story. Maybe in the first DLC, we unlock the ability to also be Felicia Hardy. So it's like we've got two different stories in one game. Stuff going on with Cat and stuff with Spider.
thank you sir
I always thought more variations, the longer the game.
I beat games like 3x over because of things Ive overlooked,or I used different tactics to achieve the goal whether its fighting,a certain challenge,different routes to the destination,easter eggs, etc. Because in the end all games will get repettitive. I now know clock work may not be what everyone wants and because of that it can just be a DLC add on and we live in an age where like in Borderlands 2 and other games, whenever u want something new or somethin the game doesnt have that it lacked it can be in DLC like new Villian storylines you can add on to like the Harley Quinn Pack and what not. so I thought Clock work could be a free add on and adding things like Villain Pack 1 and 2 DLC
with like Scorpion, Chameleon,Sandman in one and more in others. If you really have a fully packed great game it wont seem as repettitive as it did on paper I think. But still netherless I respect your opinion that adding on stories for the villains will become stale quick because that can be true.
on a side note I liked the taxis in GTAIV lol. Dont get me wrong, if they didnt have the skip to destination button then yeah I would despise the taxis man.
The reason why I mentioned the taxis and trains being unnecessary is because the development time that is spent to implement something like that into a spiderman game is going to take away from the time that could be better spent implementing something that's actually important to the game. Beenox doesn't have an unlimited amount of time and resources to work on these games so every hour they spend has to count. For example a team of people can either spend their time implementing a new parkour system to the gameplay or adding in interactive taxis. Which do you think players are going to actually care about in a spiderman game.
Same thing can be said for the whole "webs attaching to buildings", unless that concept is going to redefine the way in which spiderman web swings as far as the fluidity, speed and vertigo is concerned then there's really no point in having the webs attach to anything if spiderman swings exactly the same as he's been swinging since spiderman 2. The "webs attaching to buildings" should be a core gameplay mechanic and not a simple aesthetic/visual one. It's not 2004 anymore, spiderman shouldn't be swinging the same way he did in Spiderman 2, he need's to swing far better than that (which shouldn't be that hard to do given that game was made back on the ps2 and the next spiderman game will probably be next-gen).
Basic idea of what I'm trying to say is that there are far more important features that need time and attention such as the free-roaming, combat, villians, story, dialogue, etc. rather than miscellaneous actions such as "taxi riding" or "dating" that won't make a bit a difference to the core gameplay.