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New Ninja Gaiden Content and where it could lead..


dogbert
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-improves AI

-new improved camera (including 360 degree camera control)

-an improvement to the game engine, making the action faster

 

Yay to patching console games! Will Microsoft/Tecmo be sending out upgrade disks with these offline game fixes to owners of Ninja Gaiden without XBoxLive?

 

[added]

Yeah, I know I'm being bitter, cynical & looking a gift horse in the mouth. I'm all for significant free content - that's cool. Patches to "fix" gameplay problems, I'm not so keen.

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My understanding is that you'll still be able to play it original style, or new style, depending on which you select when creating a new game. That makes the most sense. I mean, you wouldn't want to get rid of all the original enemies and gameplay of the orginal... that would be very George Lucas of them.

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This does it, Ninja Gaiden is officically #1 for me. Goodbye Halo. The king is dead, long live the king! (until at least Halo 2.)

 

They fixed the camera. THEY FIXED THE CAMERA!!! To my knowledge, this is the only time a console company has ever changed a fundamental design of the game after it shipped due to customer demand. Team Ninja are gods among men, I'm not worthy.

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Originally posted by dogbert@Jun 24 2004, 09:39 AM

Yay to patching console games! Will Microsoft/Tecmo be sending out upgrade disks with these offline game fixes to owners of Ninja Gaiden without XBoxLive?

 

Yeah, I know I'm being bitter, cynical & looking a gift horse in the mouth. I'm all for significant free content - that's cool. Patches to "fix" gameplay problems, I'm not so keen.

I'm going to take the opposite position. If every single game I owned was "patched" to address weak points, I'd be a very happy man. It isn't as if the original NG was deficient. It's one of the highest rated Xbox games and would win GOTY if the year ended today. This is an updated version of the game, rather than a patch. Other companies have charged $49.99 for less. I just don't see how anyone could complain about a great game getting better for free. If Team Ninja had just released a version with new enemies, I'm sure you'd be complaining that the camera wasn't fixed.

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I just don't see how anyone could complain about a great game getting better for free.

 

Because I don't like non-online aspects of console games getting patched! It's a flippin' dangerous trend that leads down the road of "release now, patch later" that fills the PC market - console games are supposed to be bug free & stable before their release.

 

I'm all for additional content, I'm all for the competition stuff they're adding. I just don't particularly like the patch mentality of the PC market seeping into console gaming.

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dog, I don't understand your gripe at all. This isn't a patch it's an upgrade. If it was an MS game, you'd be paying $5.99+ for it too.

 

A patch installs itself and you cannot play without it being turned on after you install it. It's a part of the game forever. Updates are optional.

 

This update allows you to either play in the new mode (controllable camera + content) or old mode (fixed camera and shipped content.) It's your choice, you don't need the new content to play Ninja Gaiden forever to your heart's content just as it originally was.

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I'm with Snakefish on this one. I don't see how this is any different than the various other downloadable content for games like Splinter Cell (the first one, not Pandora Tomorrow which did receive several patches to fix online bugs), Crimson Skies, and Mechassault.

 

Of course, I'm also of the opinion that the camera system in Ninja Giaden is fine as it was and doesn't need any improvement. Still, I will wait until this download makes itself available so that I can try it out for myself.

 

EDIT: I would also like to point out that Team Ninja is not using this release to fix some game-crashing glitch. Hence, I don't consider it a patch. This is basically another version of the same game with some new enemies, new bosses, improved A.I., and a tweaked camera system. Besides, we're getting it for free, so it's not like we're all being ripped off.

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I agree. This isn't a patch. And it isn't a slippery slope either. If anything, this sets a positive precident, not a negative one. People have been predicting for a long time that the Xbox PC roots, the harddrive, and Xblive would cause buggy/lazy game releases. I think we're past that now. This update is just a glorious example of how Xblive is extending the life of both single and multiplayer games. Just think of how many people will be replaying Ninja Gaiden because of this update. Just think of how the publicity will sell new units. Very smart move.

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I completely agree with Brian.

 

Having been primarily a PC gamer for years, I know exactly what he's talking about with regard to patches used to implement 'features' that should have been in the game from the get-go. If Ninja Gaiden had shipped with lousy AI and a crappy camera so bad it was unplayable, this would be labelled a patch. Since it did not, this suddenly becomes a feature. To me that's just a question of degrees.

 

I don't see much point in arguing this, since I see where the rest of you are coming from. However, shipping without 'features' became the norm for a lot of PC games during the 90's and it didn't start out that way, it just happened to degrade to that point.

 

If the camera was so damn annoying, why wasn't it changed to start with? And if somebody wants to quote 'user feedback' I'll be happy to see that with a 'playtesting'. ;)

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Of course, I'm also of the opinion that the camera system in Ninja Giaden is fine as it was and doesn't need any improvement.

 

I couldn't agree more. After an hour or so in the game, controlling the camera was second nature to me. I think there is a big difference between a faulty camera system and one that takes a bit of effort to learn and perfect.

 

The new camera control is a non issue for me, in fact, its the other features that have me more excited.

 

J.

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I've never really had a problem with the camera myself. Sure, it's not great, but I've dealt with it. I wouldn't care if it wasn't changed at all. I just care about the new bosses, weapons, enemies, whathaveyou. It's just a really cool concept.

 

I'm willing to bet there'd be people who'd even pay near full price for a Ninja Gaiden 'expansion' disc. Which is essentially what this seems to be, minus the levels themselves staying the same. After all, just think of all the different versions of Street Fighter that just added small improvements. moves, characters, and some new or changed backgrounds. And we payed for those. This is free.....

 

Now, I'd seriously pay for a multiplayer version of ninja gaiden. 8 on 8 ninja battles, anyone?

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Now, I'd seriously pay for a multiplayer version of ninja gaiden. 8 on 8 ninja battles, anyone?

 

Thats exactly the kind of slippery slope that Brian is talking about. Why bother releasing the game with a full feature set right off the bat when they could easily charge you down the line for downloadable online play? Or why bother to make sure the game is as bug free as possible when they can simply throw a patch on Live a month later and fix it? Please keep in mind that I'm not specifically taking Team Ninja to task here and I want to make that clear because I'm actually very curious and excited to see what this new content adds to the game. However, I do think some of you guys are taking Brian and Marks' comments a bit to literally and not looking at the overall ramifications of what kind of trend this sort of downloadable content can lead too. For every Team Ninja out there that offers this type of update with good intentions you have another developer that sees it as a way to cut down on development time and later fix issues or add content that SHOULD have been there from the start.

 

Its a bit of a double edged sword really since the alternative is to not bother releasing anything remotely like this and simply continue dealing with costume, map and enemy updates until our eyes bleed (which is not something I want to see) but I can certainly understand the trepidation.

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Originally posted by FutureVoid@Jun 25 2004, 10:43 AM

Now, I'd seriously pay for a multiplayer version of ninja gaiden. 8 on 8 ninja battles, anyone?

 

Thats exactly the kind of slippery slope that Brian is talking about. Why bother releasing the game with a full feature set right off the bat when they could easily charge you down the line for downloadable online play? Or why bother to make sure the game is as bug free as possible when they can simply throw a patch on Live a month later and fix it? Please keep in mind that I'm not specifically taking Team Ninja to task here and I want to make that clear because I'm actually very curious and excited to see what this new content adds to the game. However, I do think some of you guys are taking Brian and Marks' comments a bit to literally and not looking at the overall ramifications of what kind of trend this sort of downloadable content can lead too. For every Team Ninja out there that offers this type of update with good intentions you have another developer that sees it as a way to cut down on development time and later fix issues or add content that SHOULD have been there from the start.

 

Its a bit of a double edged sword really since the alternative is to not bother releasing anything remotely like this and simply continue dealing with costume, map and enemy updates until our eyes bleed (which is not something I want to see) but I can certainly understand the trepidation.

Exactly.

 

This is precisely the problem that's plaguing PC gaming. I sure as shit don't want it to ruin console gaming...

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However, I do think some of you guys are taking Brian and Marks' comments a bit to literally and not looking at the overall ramifications of what kind of trend this sort of downloadable content can lead too

There are enough actual realized problems without getting worked up about things that might happen. If game publishers release buggy, featureless games only to dishonestly provide those fixes and features at a price, they will get hammered by journalists and gamers. They will pay the price with poor sales, bad PR, and their reputation. I don't know about you, but I WON'T BUY games that are known to be buggy and lacking in features.

 

I agree with the sentiment, I just think it is overstated. That is why I argued the point. Not because I don't feel the same in spirit. Of course I do. Besides, what fun would threads like this be if we agreed on everything. Playstation sucks. M$ is evil. Your mother wears army boots.

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I personally don't care how much they patch console games. Big whoop. Think how many times it's come in handy, off the top of my head: Rainbow Six, Pandora Tomorrow, ToCA 2, Rallisport Challenge (pretty soon), Links 2004, MotoGP 2...

 

Would you have rather NOT had patches for those games so fix a little bug here or there, or stats issues, or exploits that people found?

 

Would you NOT pay for a Ninja Gaiden online that had new gameplay modes and multiplayer levels? Don't tell me you wouldn't have bought the fictional Halo 1.5.

 

Heck, even Rainbow Six 3: Black Arrow and GR:IT were/are simply just expansions to an existing game, and use the same engine with a few tweaks here and there. Plently of people are more than willing to pay for those, myself included.

 

And yet, people see if as a bad sign that we get all this Ninja Gaiden stuff for free. I don't get it. The only content I've had a problem with is A) content that was already on the disc, requiring you to have Xbox Live to unlock it (Wolfenstein), B) Content that was purposely left out of the game in the first place to have some fake content download (Mechassault). I don't even have a problem with paying for some content. If I was happy enough with the game to begin with, I see no problem paying a few bucks for even more of it, that I didn't really need in the first place to have a complete game.

 

So, it seems that the 'camera issue' is the main point of discussion. Obviously, they were happy with it when they shipped it, and many people still love the game despite its imperfection. Reviewer opinions (not that they always count) obviously show that it doesn't ruin the beauty of the game in any way.

 

Yet, because the developers actually listen to user opinions and found ways to improve it, and will deliver it now instead of waiting for the sequel, that's a bad thing? Was it a bad thing when the content for Project Gotham 2 gave you the option to change the player-name text size, because many people requested it, and Bizarre Creations actually listened to the people that wrote in?

 

I really don't get the whole 'slippery slide' argument here, in any of these cases. People get upset over something like a camera, say 'the game would be even better if that got changed', and the developer gives them exactly what they want, yet somehow that becomes controversial.

 

Well, that's how I look at it anyway.

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I personally don't care how much they patch console games. Big whoop. Think how many times it's come in handy, off the top of my head: Rainbow Six, Pandora Tomorrow, ToCA 2, Rallisport Challenge (pretty soon), Links 2004, MotoGP 2...

 

Would you have rather NOT had patches for those games so fix a little bug here or there, or stats issues, or exploits that people found?

 

I'm not sure you are seeing the point of this discussion. The very nature of online games almost REQUIRES patches due to exploits, cheats and some bugs that may need to be cleaned up post release. I personally don't feel this discussion has much to do with the games you noted above as that has been common place in the online arena for years. I do believe the point of contention here deals with the single player/offline portion of the games available on store shelves at the moment. I do have a VERY real problem with that content being patched and fixed.

 

How about having Rallisport released to the market with a game killing single player bug that doesn't allow you to progress past a certain racing tier? Thats ok though...we'll just get a patch for it later! Its a hypothetical but in the world of PC gaming it a very distressing reality that could very well spill over into the world of consoles. Is the point here being overstated? I don't think so, I think its just being stated and missed.

 

What I do think people are getting thier panties in a bunch about is that Team Ninja is being criticized for releasing free content to Xbox owners. Let me spell it out for you since diatrabes are being written to protect that sanctity that is Team Ninja: THAT IS NOT THE POINT!. I'm really looking forward to seeing how the new camera system works (since I have a real dislike for the current one) and I'm sure as hell wanting to see how much faster they can get the game to play! The precedent being set here is the topic of conversation and I wish some of you would look past what you percieve as criticism of Ninja Gaidens' developers and see the bigger picture.

 

The only content I've had a problem with is A) content that was already on the disc, requiring you to have Xbox Live to unlock it (Wolfenstein), B) Content that was purposely left out of the game in the first place to have some fake content download (Mechassault)

 

Then why is it so difficult for you to see the point here? Oh thats right you're still too busy defending Team Ninja to see that thier specific content is NOT the problem but where that content could lead, is. You've touched upon the very issues we're talking about hollis though you're still pulling examples from the online arena (which is a whole other ball of wax) where as my issue is with single player content. Though I do believe we can generalize and say that content/fixes being left out of a game prerelease because the developers have the nice comfortable patch to fall back on is a very real danger (again look at the PC market for a myriad of examples).

 

According to Keith however the system, game critics and joe blow gamer knows better than to buy an "incomplete" product which according to you Wolf and Mech fall under. How many copies of Mechassault and Wolfenstein have been sold exactly? ;)

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I find it interesting that when a game ships with (arguably) skimpy content that is later augmented for a fee (Links, PGR2), the counter-argument is "You knew DLC wasn't always going to be free," "Don't like it? Don't pay it," "It's only $5," etc. Yet, when essentially an entirely new game is released and costs nothing, suddenly we're on a "slippery slope" to broken games.

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I find it interesting that when a game ships with (arguably) skimpy content that is later augmented for a fee (Links, PGR2), the counter-argument is "You knew DLC wasn't always going to be free," "Don't like it? Don't pay it,"

 

Its a true statement and I find it silly that anyone is dismayed when they have to pay for DLC since its the very business model that Live is being built around. Is that a business model that everyone likes? Of course not but don't act suprised when it happens and I've said as much in the past. If you don't like it, don't pay for it since its the only way to make your voice known.

 

Are people right in complaining about a lack of content in Links or Mechassault at release? Sure they are and thats exactly what's being discussed here as it pertains to single player and multiplayer games. Also if you think PGR2 shipped with skimpy content then you need to see a doctor immediately. ;)

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First, I'm not really trying to defend Team Ninja. I really don't give a crap about any of their games except Ninja Gaiden, to be honest.

 

Secondly, of course I was talking about online gameplay. Duuur. Okay, I'll talk about single player then:

 

Splinter Cell: I don't remember anyone complaining about UBI adding more levels.

 

DOA3: Um, the booster disc.

 

KOTOR: Yavin Station.

 

Ninja Gaiden: How's that different? Because they gave you a new game mode, sped it up, and changed the camera to please users? Because they implemented a feature that was already going to be in the next game?

 

Perhaps it should be explained from a software development perspective (which is what I actually do):

 

A defect is a bug in code that was found after release to the users.

 

A feature is an enhancement, added functionality, intended to make the software better, easier to use, enhance productivity, whathaveyou.

 

The lean glitch in Rainbow Six, would be a defect, along with that 98% save issue in Gran Turismo 2, and the glitches in KOTOR, Morrowind, etc. Complain about those all you want, because they slipped past testing and were clearly portions of functionality that did not work as intended when the game was released. All those other things I mentioned above (in online games) were too.

 

In no way, is the camera in Ninja Gaiden a defect. Not at all. It works exactly as it was supposed to, although some people just didn't like the way it did, in fact, work. Once again, not a bug. So, people give feedback to Itagi and Team Ninja. 'We don't like this'.

 

Itagi and team think: 'You know, we didn't have a problem with it at the time, but let's go ahead and modify it, listening to user opinions and give it to them when we give them all this other free stuff. While we're at it, let's give them smarter AI and faster gameplay too, if they want it'.(Of course, I'm working on the logical assumption you'll still be able to play 1.0 from the menu without deleting the content).

 

And this is a bad thing? A slippery slope? Lazy development? Coding to put a game out as quickly as possible and fix it later because defects have surfaced due to poor testing? NO.

 

Sounds to me like a feature was implemented that was requested by the users, which is actually a sign of good development. If you want to talk about bugs, go find one of the many Xbox games that DOES have them, and call that a 'slippery slope'.

 

That whole argument has nothing to do with this content, nor Ninja Gaiden.

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I think the problem here is that some people view Brian's point as a straw man argument.

 

He says:

Because I don't like non-online aspects of console games getting patched! It's a flippin' dangerous trend that leads down the road of "release now, patch later" that fills the PC market - console games are supposed to be bug free & stable before their release.

 

But this argument relies on Team Ninja's downloadable content being deemed a "Patch", when what we are in fact discussing is an upgrade.

 

Its also not exactly fair to say things like:

THEY FIXED THE CAMERA!!!!

 

because this implies that it was faulty to begin with.

 

If we were talking about a game that was released with single player bugs and glitches that were later patched via XBL, then arguments like "I don't like the precedent this sets" become valid.

 

I think it would be fair to say that while we understand (and would most likely share)Brian and Romier's concern, we just don't think it applies to this particular situation.

 

J.

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According to Kieth however the system, game critics and joe blow gamer knows better than to buy an "incomplete" product

Oh-my-God. Can I just say, that nobody can spell my name right. It is "Keith" not "Kieth." True Story: My girlfriend, with whom I spent an entire summer with, apparently couldn't spell my name either. Is "Keith" really that unspellable like the word "unspellable?"

 

Oh yeah, I agree that not everyone is smart enough to read reviews before they buy. But those same people will be playing Superman 64 and Enter the Matrix. I just can't worry about "Those People" - Darwin will weed them out :lmfao:

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That wasn't a very nice thing to say about Enter The Matrix. No game (except maybe E.T. and that Aquaman game) should ever be mentioned with the unmentionable game from hell.

 

All I know is that all this Ninja Gaiden talk makes me really want to go home and slap it back in the ole' Xbox and beat it before the content comes out.

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Splinter Cell: I don't remember anyone complaining about UBI adding more levels.

 

DOA3: Um, the booster disc.

 

KOTOR: Yavin Station.

 

Ninja Gaiden: How's that different? Because they gave you a new game mode, sped it up, and changed the camera to please users? Because they implemented a feature that was already going to be in the next game?

 

Does adding a level or extra costumes fundamentally change the way a game is played? Does adding a bikini to a game alter an entire underlying system? Therein lies the double edged sword I was talking about and I believe the main reason for concern in Brian's original post.

 

In the case of Splinter Cell the arguments over whether those levels should have been included at release raged on the internet almost as heavy as fee based DLC so you may want to check your memory :D . Let me reiterate my position here , I'd LOVE to see more of this type of content released but the potential message (ie don't worry you can change/fix it later) it can send to other developers could be problematic in the long run which is why I completely understand Brians' hesitancy in embracing such content.

 

You seem to take the standpoint that I want nothing to do with this release and I think its terrible that they are releasing it, which is something that you would be completely dead wrong in. I think its great they are implementing this stuff, I said it off the bat in my original post (hence the WOW!). I applaud Team Ninja for giving gamers a choice as to what camera system they prefer to use (and yes you can select whether you play NG 1.0 or 1.1 when creating a new game), speeding up the gameplay, adding more costumes etc.. and I think they are releasing this with the best of intentions! So please take care in misunderstanding what I'm trying to convey here because again you continue to defend Ninja Gaidens' content when in fact it needs no defending. What I am trying to do is bring some level of understanding as to why some feel there is a level of trepidation needed in seeing this particular kind of content released....

 

That whole argument has nothing to do with this content, nor Ninja Gaiden.

 

And this is a bad thing? A slippery slope? Lazy development? Coding to put a game out as quickly as possible and fix it later because defects have surfaced due to poor testing? NO.

 

No you are right, but lets face it, this kind of content has really never been released via Xbox Live or any other online console and for free no less and that is where this content and NG come into play. I'll say once again that for every Team Ninja out there that does this right there are a myriad of developers that will do just the opposite and cut corners to get thier product on store shelves and give you supposed "features" that are anything but. Its not a definite, never said it was but given the state of PC gaming over the last couple of years its a very real possiblility that I and many others don't want to see happen on consoles. Hope that helps you in understanding my position a bit more.

 

Sounds to me like a feature was implemented that was requested by the users, which is actually a sign of good development. If you want to talk about bugs, go find one of the many Xbox games that DOES have them, and call that a 'slippery slope'.

 

Perhaps you need to take a step back from the conversation and take a deep breath? Seems attitudes and emotions are becoming heated over a simple discussion. Of course its difficult to determine intent with the written word so if I'm misunderstanding you please feel free to clear up any confusion but keep in mind we're having a friendly debate here and little more. I've already stated my position on the issue and I hope that you can better understand where I'm coming from with this most recent post.

 

Oh-my-God. Can I just say, that nobody can spell my name right

 

You're just not worth remembering. :lmfao: (j/k and I'll correct your name in my previous post Keith. My apologies.).

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