Author Topic: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...  (Read 6976 times)

Offline Say

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If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« on: February 15, 2013, 04:20:37 PM »
... what would you have done differently in Ep1 and Ep2?

Do you agree with that's going on so far with the story? If not, how would you change it?

This is a serious question that I wonder about due to marketing purposes, so feel free to be as honest as you'd care for. Thank you!


**WARNING - THREAD MAY HAVE SPOILERS**
« Last Edit: February 15, 2013, 07:03:41 PM by Oldbushie »


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Offline stika

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2013, 06:11:46 AM »
haven't played Episode 2, but for Episode 1 I'd have removed the pre-interrogation puzzles you know, the one where the bum wants food, but apparently he still won't touch the egg sandwich or the fact that Erica doesn't even carry her wallet :P

Oooh also, it'd be fun if Erica had a pong-like game on her cellphone, or at least just more stuff to do

Heck, we could even put the POStudios forums on her cellphone :P
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Offline darthkiwi

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2013, 07:39:25 AM »
Stika makes good points. I liked the interrogation scene generally, but felt there was too much to-ing and fro-ing. I like the fact that you *could* make him feel more at ease by giving him food, but it felt weird that you *had* to.

On the interface side, well I know people have complained about this but I feel like there are some things that were missed. (Bear in mind I've not played ep2 yet so if you changed anything there I don't know about it.)

Inventory: it felt strange that you had to "equip" one item and then use that in all "give/use" actions before you equipped another. I think a better way to do it would be to move the decision for which item to use into the "use/give" interface itself, like Gemini Rue does.

Also felt it was a little odd that there was a dedicated button for your phone but you could also access your phone via the inventory. I'd have just kept it in the inventory, but I can see why you put the extra button there. This isn't really a critique but more an observation.

Re. the cognition powers - I can see why you had the "open power > select target > activate power" interface structure, but I feel it could be reduced by a click here or there. Certainly, the very first cognition power could just be "open power > click target". I was also confused by the fact that there are different hotspots for different kinds of cognition powers; if all cognition hotspots were the same then you the interface could be "open power > click target(s) > select power to use" like in the full game, but would feel slightly more flexible - because the game wouldn't know which power you're using until the very end.

I also think that Erica's use of the internet/mobile devices made her feel more real to us, but that this was undermined by the fact that the internet didn't exist as such, it was just another area of gameplay. Same goes for the FBI computers: there should be thousands of files on there. But of course I have no solution for this, because the only way to fix this would be to create ALL OF THOSE THINGS. :o

Actually, I guess you could procedurally generate a thousand FBI files. That wouldn't be too tricky. The hardest part would be in making sure they don't conflict with the puzzles: if you're looking for someone who was stabbed to death in February 1992 then you'd need to make sure no procedurally generated files fall into that category, because you don't want to direct attention away from the one custom-made entry that you want the player to click.

Of course, that would take resources away from other areas and would have almost zero payoff, but I can dream. :P
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Offline Brain Stew

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2013, 10:00:59 AM »
Aside from things that were already said, I think I'd have found something for McAdam's/Davies to do when they're in their office. They sure do stand around a lot. :)

I also think Episode 2, needed a little less "wait for a solution" style puzzles. For a game that anchors itself in realism. I find trouble believing Erica wouldn't find a screwdriver on her own without having to wait around for one to present itself in a PO Box.

I'd love to have the option of calling people whether Erica needed to or not and just having it go to voicemail if the person was unavailable.

Small details like other workers saying a greeting when you pass by their desks that's custom to where Erica is in the story.

And of course, I'd love to have seen Erica's apartment as a location.  If only so we get a glimpse into her outside work persona.

These are minor additions and nitpicks. I think the team is doing great overall. This is the most fun I've had with an adventure game in years.
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Offline Say

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2013, 11:50:52 AM »
Kind of off topic but it must be said - I LOVE YOUR AVATAR BRAIN STEW D:


*continues to write down notes*

Go on, go on :D

I need all these notes before january 22nd, I mean...  February 2nd :P


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Offline WildmanCAL

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2013, 02:56:20 PM »
I found it odd that when Erica went the dean's office at Berklee, there was no chair in front of his desk to have guests sit down.  The lack of that piece of furniture felt like it was the missing piece to that "set".

Offline stika

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2013, 02:15:59 PM »
oooh good eye there Wildman
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Offline Mr_Nabby

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2013, 05:06:50 PM »
Yeah, I would also have liked to see Erica's apartment. It would be a great way to learn more about her, in many diffrent ways.

Something that would allow us to get to know more about Scott would be nice. We hardly know anything about him. Something like a photo album, a home video, or (I think I mentioned this somewhere else) Erica could have some text message, or a voicemail on her phone.

More dummy- and filler information on the computer and cellphone. I was kinda annoyed that when you had a search option at both places, NOTHING would show up if you used any of the categories that wasn't related to the puzzles. Just show something and if you click on it Erica says: "That isn't related to the case I'm working on." or "I don't have any use for that information."
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 05:08:27 PM by Mr_Nabby »
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Offline Guyra

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2013, 07:00:58 AM »
I agree with seeing Erica's apartment, that is something that could easily serve as a way of getting to know and care more about her as a character.

I also would've gone back to Episode 1 and polished it up a bit. It hasn't got nearly the same amount of polish as Episode 2 has got, and considering the fact that most players will try this game before getting the rest, I would say that having the same amount of polish that you see in Episode 2 is rather important.

Offline KatieHal

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2013, 07:47:21 AM »
We thought about showing Erica's apt, but in the end there wasn't anything we needed from there gameplay-wise. I agree, it would've been fun to see it, but it was just one of those design choices we had to make.

And Ep 1 definitely benefitted from both the team having already done Ep 1 and having more experience. I think you'll continue to see those kinds of improvements as we release Eps 3 and 4.

This Is great stuff, btw, thanks for the feedback, guys! Even if we can't incorporate it into Cognition, it's good to know what kind of things people want to see for future games.

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Offline Lambonius

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #10 on: March 03, 2013, 03:47:33 PM »
I'm not sold on Erica's hair color.

Offline GrahamRocks!

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2013, 07:55:43 PM »
Got somethin' against redheads?

Offline Lambonius

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2013, 08:26:23 PM »
Got somethin' against redheads?

Ever since I saw that South Park episode about gingers...well, let's just say I keep my guard up.

Offline KatieHal

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2013, 09:08:02 PM »
Hehe, considering I'm a redhead, probably a good idea, whenever we inevitably meet in battle, Lamb. :)

(Having not seen that episode, I can't comment on that, though)

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Offline Lambonius

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2013, 09:37:00 PM »
(Having not seen that episode, I can't comment on that, though)

Haha...you should look it up--it's a classic.

Offline CriticalDamage

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #15 on: March 07, 2013, 04:33:28 PM »
Well, so far the phone it's very limited. You just make one call if I remember correctly and there is a certain sense that you're the only agent working  :P that became somehow annoying in ep.2 due to the conmotion behind the current ep. and the ending of ep.1. Which it's probably a signature in games like this (the whole "you against the world" thing) but being a F.B.I agent should feel a little bit different than being George Stobbart  :P

It's not problem at all, like I said, but it would make it more real if you could, for instance, call Rose instead of going all the way there to see if she can teach you anything new.

Offline stika

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #16 on: March 07, 2013, 04:44:40 PM »
yeah the phone is a very common complaint :P
« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 04:59:48 PM by stika »
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Offline Jack Stryker

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #17 on: April 07, 2013, 12:58:39 PM »
If I could, I would have done four things:

1.  Removed the unnecessary subtitles that appear when Erica reads emails.  It is already written right there on the computer screen, after all.

2.  Made it possible to take more items before Erica actually needs them and learn her new cog powers before they're needed, so as to cut down on the to-ing and fro-ing.  Although I can kind of understand her objection to the egg sandwich.

3.  Inserted a little montage after Erica first leaves Rose's shop.  First, it would show Erica in her car saying how she could stay up driving all night, but... yeah.  Then it would cut to the alarm clock going off and her hand hitting the off button, then her feet hitting the floor as she gets out of bed, then her arm reaching through the shower curtain and grabbing a towel off the rack, and conclude with Erica putting on her coat and grabbing her keys off her nightstand.

4.  Added some more ways to die or lose.  Not that I want to see her fail, but the game seems just a hair too easy, as there are very few ways to die and they're all so easily avoidable in obvious ways.  Thus, an entire episode can be easily played through from beginning to end, without having to use the save and load feature.  ...If one has the time to do so, that is.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2013, 01:18:31 PM by Jack Stryker »

Offline br305893

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2013, 08:34:59 PM »
The main problems I have with the game are:

The phone-Like a lot of other people have said already, I wish the phone had more usable features. A mini-game or other such entertainment would go a long way.

The graphics-There are a few points in the game where I noticed little graphical errors. Like when Erica punches the file cabinet in the Dean's office, she basically misses the cabinet by a few inches. But of course, I'm really just nitpicking with that.

An opportunity to travel outside of Boston-One of the things I loved about GK1 is that you get to visit three completely different countries in the same game. I think it would be kind of cool if Erica got to take a trip elsewhere. Maybe even a side trip to Connecticut  ;D (My home state)
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Offline stika

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Re: If you were Lead Designer for Cognition...
« Reply #19 on: May 15, 2013, 08:57:32 AM »
I think we can all agree that what Cognition really needs is more fan service!

Dammit! I demand to see John wearing a bikini!
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