Telltale Autumn Sale

Questions for Mike Stemmle? Post 'em here!

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  • edited June 2009
    If the death - or, I suppose, in hindsight, coma - of adventure games in the late nineties had any positive effects, at least for me personally, it was to open me up to other genres. Because ten years ago, I might have made a comment like that.
    So yeah, to simply write off an entire genre of games as having paperthin sub-par stories is, frankly, pure genre-snobbery.

    Off the top of my head, besides Half-Life, there's Call of Cthulu: Dark Corners of the Earth. And, as you yourself point out, your verdict on Mass Effect is apparently based on a "quick read of the story". It's all well and good for you not to be interested in these sorts of games, but your attitude on this particular subject borders on smug superiority. Which, you know, not cool.
  • WillWill Banned
    edited June 2009
    Portal. Portal Portal Portal. The best First Person Shooter/Adventure Game ever made.
  • edited June 2009
    Will wrote: »
    Portal. Portal Portal Portal. The best First Person Shooter/Adventure Game ever made.
    I'm writing a note here, 'Huge Success'
  • edited June 2009
    Oh i was going to say Portal before, but i doubt(ed?) if it was really a FPS.
    You shoot portals alright, but its more puzzle-solving orientated rather than shoot at things.
    Anyway, despite the genre, sure we all agree it couldnt be more awesome. That final song was better than a hundred cakes.
  • edited June 2009
    PariahKing wrote: »
    I love adventure games as much as the next guy, but games like Half Life 2 do have epic and compelling stories - even as "shooters." I don't see adventure games having a monopoly on the genre.

    There's a difference, though - in HL2, you have an epic story as a backdrop, and you're playing only small parts of it. In adventure games (or interactive movies), you play most of the story
    Will wrote: »
    Portal. Portal Portal Portal. The best First Person Shooter/Adventure Game ever made.

    It's not a shooter, but I agree it's a massive game. Valve really stunned the industry by putting the best single player and the best multiplayer game of 2007 on the market at the same time :)
  • edited June 2009
    Ok heres a question, Where can i buy Afterlife? I have wanted to play it for sooooo long!!
  • edited June 2009
    It's not a shooter, but I agree it's a massive game. Valve really stunned the industry by putting the best single player and the best multiplayer game of 2007 on the market at the same time :)

    I think Portal's story was so good due to Eric Wolpaw (i.e. Former videogame journalist and the guy who freaking co-wrote Psychonauts with Tim "Freaking" Schafer!!).
  • edited June 2009
    Will wrote: »
    Portal. Portal Portal Portal. The best First Person Shooter/Adventure Game ever made.

    Portal really isn't a shooter. I'd call it an Adventure Game unabashedly. It has action elements, but really no more so than plenty of modern adventure games, and much better executed.

    So uh... do you agree, Mike Stemmle, who this thread is about?
  • edited June 2009
    There's a difference, though - in HL2, you have an epic story as a backdrop, and you're playing only small parts of it. In adventure games (or interactive movies), you play most of the story

    Actually, in HL2 you are always in control of your character. Even when the story is progressing (call it cut-scenes) you are free to turn where you want or face anyone you want, giving you the sense of actually being in that world.
    So, yes, I also agree that in the end, HL2 is kind of an adventure game. Very epic and cinematic, though obviously not a classic graphic adventure game (your character doesn't even talk!).
  • edited June 2009
    Bioshock and System Shock 2 are examples of good narrative in FPS games. I think this thread has gone a bit off topic.
  • edited June 2009
    I think Portal's story was so good due to Eric Wolpaw (i.e. Former videogame journalist and the guy who freaking co-wrote Psychonauts with Tim "Freaking" Schafer!!).

    Blessed be his hands :)
  • edited June 2009
    Can we stay on topic?
  • edited June 2009
    I was so excited to hear that monkey island was coming back again. I have a question on the controls. On the pc version, will it be point and click or will there be actual movement? It doesn't really matter but i hope its point and click because i just got into the sam and max games (i downloaded the first one through the free purchase, but then i bought the season one for wii) and i really love the gameplay. Plus Curse of Monkey Island was awesome point and click as well. so thats pretty much all i'm asking about is is what control type it is. Appreciate the reply and so glad Monkey Island's back!
  • edited June 2009
    i think they said that the controls were going to be a hybrid control system like in wallace and gromit where you control the characters via keyboard but you point and click to pick up items and use them
  • MarkDarinMarkDarin Telltale Staff
    edited June 2009
    Just a reminder guys, we haven't announced our final control scheme yet. (Hmmm, do the words "Control scheme" sound evil to any one else?) We are working on something that should please everyone!
  • edited June 2009
    I vote for good old point-n'-click (on the PC. Pointing and clicking isn't quite so easy on the Wii - maybe do targeting assistance!)

    Also, I just pre-ordered and I couldn't be happier! Hearts all around! <3 <3
  • edited June 2009
    MarkDarin wrote: »
    Just a reminder guys, we haven't announced our final control scheme yet. (Hmmm, do the words "Control scheme" sound evil to any one else?) We are working on something that should please everyone!

    My guess is that there are two options for control schemes, like for the Wii how some games allow you to use Wiimote, Classic Controller, or gamecube.
  • edited June 2009
    hplikelike wrote: »
    My guess is that there are two options for control schemes, like for the Wii how some games allow you to use Wiimote, Classic Controller, or gamecube.

    I hope you're right. I too would like an option to pick whichever type you're most comfortable with. Point and click is the way to go for me. I tried the controls in Sam and Max and then Wallace and Gromit. Sam and Max's point and click is easily much better for me personally.
  • edited June 2009
    TEXT BASED GRAPHIC ADVENTURE CONTROL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Relive the glory days.

    <Open Window>
    The window is locked.
    <Unlock Window>
    The window latch unlocks.
    <Open Window>
    <Throw GrogSwigger out window>
    Grogswigger sails to his...
    <You Are Dead.>
  • edited June 2009
    Ok heres a question, Where can i buy Afterlife? I have wanted to play it for sooooo long!!

    A little advice: DON'T buy that game...
    /A little advice
  • edited June 2009
    For those of you who are wondering about the "control-scheme" development of ToMI, this ToMI Chapter 1 preview from Kontaku seems to have experienced a whole NEW control interface;
    What Needs Improvement?
    The mouse control scheme: There's a divide among PC adventure gamers between those that like W, A, S, D plus mouse and space bar and those that only want to use the mouse. Telltale has experience with both in their point-and-click adventures work—and a keyboard-only control scheme in Wallace and Grommet —but for Monkey Island, they're looking for a compromise. Right now, you can use the keyboard to move around, but you still need the mouse to click stuff and manipulate your inventory. The alternative is to click and hold the left mouse button to bring up a red direction arrow over Guybrush. Dragging the mouse in this mode will make Guybrush walk steadily in whatever direction the mouse is moving toward. It's still a bit twitchy, and it would be nice if you didn't have to hold the left button down; but there's still plenty of time for the development team to figure it out.
  • edited June 2009
    Please, no hybrid interface. Really, it makes things unnecessarily complex: allow the player to choose between mouse only or keyboard only (I would probably skip between the two according to my mood :)), but don't force him to use both at the same time. Keyboard controls in W&G work very well: I left the scheme suggested in the tutorial as soon as I understood I could sit back and enjoy the game controlling it entirely from the NumPad. "WASD plus mouse and space bar" may work for RPGs or action oriented titles: the slower pace of an adventure game doesn't need overly elaborate two-hands controls.
  • edited June 2009
    Zomantic wrote: »
    Please, no hybrid interface. Really, it makes things unnecessarily complex: allow the player to choose between mouse only or keyboard only (I would probably skip between the two according to my mood :)), but don't force him to use both at the same time. Keyboard controls in W&G work very well: I left the scheme suggested in the tutorial as soon as I understood I could sit back and enjoy the game controlling it entirely from the NumPad. "WASD plus mouse and space bar" may work for RPGs or action oriented titles: the slower pace of an adventure game doesn't need overly elaborate two-hands controls.
    From what I can tell, they now have mouse-only, keyboard-only, and hybrid. All stuff that can change by the final release I'm sure, but I suppose they have engineers hitting computers with hammers or however engineers do this sort of thing to make the mouse movement work.
  • edited June 2009
    From what I can tell, they now have mouse-only, keyboard-only, and hybrid.

    Hope so. I don't care that much about controls: it's just that W&G did keyboard quite well, and I fear that adding mouse controls to the formula would just be a step back. Perhaps the previewer hadn't it all clear.

    However, have you read this new interview? Not very informative, but a couple of Mike's answers are pretty hilarious.
    Stemmle wrote:
    Finally, the series has been described as a sequel to a Monkey Island 5 that was never made --do you think there's a chance that game would ever be made, or is it best left to the players' imaginations?

    Oh, I think it’s really best left to the player’s imaginations. From what I gather, the initial design incorporated several controversial retcons (Stan is Guybrush’s Father!?), time travel, and an extended sequence in which Guybrush argued (in Pig Latin) about the fairness of Pirate Tax Codes.
  • edited June 2009
    Mike, you are awesome and have made/worked on a lot of awesome games. Thanks in particular for making Escape and Hit the Road - two of my favorite games ever. I love that bit with the teacher in the middle of Escape - honestly I can't remember laughing more in any MI game than hearing Guybrush give wrong answers to the re-education class.

    Me and my roommate still make jokes about blood sacrifices made with cabin boys.

    You get too much crap over Escape and no respect or thanks - it was a great game and while it isn't perfect no game is. Sometimes I think the extremely disgruntled are a minority that just happens to be very vocal. Similar plot holes were already present in CoMI but no one cared yet some fans seem to want to hang you publically over Herman Toothrot being H.T. Marley. Minor plotholes are inevitable. I loved the twist in my original playthrough and despite having played the originals countless times beforehand I never caught it.

    There's gaping plot holes and then there's continuity OCD.
  • edited June 2009
    PariahKing wrote: »
    I love that bit with the teacher in the middle of Escape - honestly I can't remember laughing more in any MI game than hearing Guybrush give wrong answers to the re-education class.

    Now, that was inspired. Possibly my favourite bit in the whole series :)
    Sometimes I think the extremely disgruntled are a minority that just happens to be very vocal.

    You sound like an historian (and I agree with you) :p


    Mr. Stemmle/Mike/<whatever you wish to be called>,
    Random question (poss. already been asked?), but how did you get into the games business?

    It always seems like you guys were destined to reach this point, was there really divine/extraterrestrial intervention at play?
  • edited June 2009
    Ok heres a question, Where can i buy Afterlife? I have wanted to play it for sooooo long!!


    Here
  • edited June 2009
    Gryffalio wrote: »
    You sound like an historian (and I agree with you) :p
    I do like the occasional read through U.S. history, but I was just ripping off and inverting a Richard Nixon quote there.
  • edited June 2009
    PariahKing wrote: »
    There's gaping plot holes and then there's continuity OCD.

    Would it be too much to ask to have a sequel that doesn't directly contradict the previous games. Story is important in Adventure games, and recons are rarely recieved well by fans. I really did enjoy Escape from Monkey Island. It's a funny game with some cool ideas and some good puzzles, but if it had been written with bit more respect for story developed in the games that came before it would have been a better game.
  • edited June 2009
    At least one similar already existed in Curse. If I remember correctly there's some plot explanation for H.T. Marley's death that makes Elaine much older than Guybrush, yet she doesn't appear that much older than him. The story doesn't internally conflict which is really most important. And if a character says something another disagrees with, just remember - LeChuck and Ozzie are evil, wicked people who I'm sure would lie for the sake of their own ego.

    For the future games it's not impossible to retcon a solution to all the "problems" into the story but there's no real need to in game - it'd stick out like a big sore thumb. That's why ToMI just starts way after Escape.
  • edited June 2009
    How is your last name pronounced? Stemm-ul? Stemm-lee? I keep hearing both in interviews and things.
  • edited June 2009
    PariahKing wrote: »
    For the future games it's not impossible to retcon a solution to all the "problems" into the story but there's no real need to in game - it'd stick out like a big sore thumb. That's why ToMI just starts way after Escape.

    I know there is no real need to tidy up the few "problems" like Herman Toothrot is H.T. Marley and the whole who pushed H.T. Marley into the whirlpool thing but if they chose to clean it up it could be done in a joking way, like it being explained and then Guybrush responding really sarcasticaly that it makes a lot of sense.
  • edited June 2009
    PariahKing wrote: »
    At least one similar already existed in Curse. If I remember correctly there's some plot explanation for H.T. Marley's death that makes Elaine much older than Guybrush, yet she doesn't appear that much older than him. The story doesn't internally conflict which is really most important. And if a character says something another disagrees with, just remember - LeChuck and Ozzie are evil, wicked people who I'm sure would lie for the sake of their own ego.

    For the future games it's not impossible to retcon a solution to all the "problems" into the story but there's no real need to in game - it'd stick out like a big sore thumb. That's why ToMI just starts way after Escape.

    Incorrect, or at least I am pretty sure you are. In CMI LeChuck claims to have pushed Grandpa Marley into a whirlpool during the America's cup, clearly stating this happened after discovering big whoop which happened after him being rejected by Elaine. This does not contradict anything stated in MI1 or MI2.

    Because all this happened after Elaine rejected LeChuck you would assume these events would be quite recent, with in the last 10 years at least. As far as I know at no point in the first 3 Monkey Island games is it mentioned how long ago H.T Marley dissappeared.

    However it is mentioned in Monkey Island 1 that Herman has been on Monkey Island for over 20 years. So in order for Herman to be Grandpa Marley EMI added the detail that his dissapearence occured over 20 years ago and ignored the fact that he sailed to Monkey Island on the Sea Monkey. By doing this EMI breaks the explanation of events presented in Monkey Island 3 without replacing it with an explanation of it's own.

    There are still things that don't make sense or aren't well explained in MI3, but nothing near as bad as the plot holes introduced in EMI. The easiest way to mend the continuity would be to pretend EMI never happened, which would be a pitty because as I said, it's not a bad game, it just made a mess of the story. I can understand Telltale wanting to distance themselves from it. I wonder if they will explain how LeChuck got his ego back.

    I for one would like to see story stored out at some point. Doesn't matter if any necessary retcons stick out like a sore thumb, the contradictions already do if you play through the series in order or try to explain the story anyone.

    /Continuity OCD rant
  • edited June 2009
    prizna wrote: »
    I know there is no real need to tidy up the few "problems" like Herman Toothrot is H.T. Marley and the whole who pushed H.T. Marley into the whirlpool thing but if they chose to clean it up it could be done in a joking way, like it being explained and then Guybrush responding really sarcasticaly that it makes a lot of sense.

    Yes, that would be good :D
  • edited June 2009
    It could be a mystical time-vortex whirlpool?
    I'm just trying to help!
  • edited June 2009
    Have you ever made a mistake so bad that the head of department yelled out "Stemm-leeee!!" while shaking his fist at the air and between puffs on his cigar?

    How many monkeys are there in Tales? I will not accept any answer other than "more than the previous Monkey Island games combined". Or I will sulk.

    Will Guybrush be mistreating any animals? It's not a Monkey Island game without it! Or indeed a LucasArts or Telltale adventure game. Hamsters, dogs, parrots, rabbity-things, monkeys, cows, rat creatures, chickens, battery-powered bunnies, bigfoots, tentacles...
  • edited June 2009
    nadir wrote:
    I wonder if they will explain how LeChuck got his ego back.

    I belive they don't have to - LeChuck broke free from the power of Ultimate Insult at the end of EMI - he attacked Ozzie and destroyed the talisman. I don't think that would be possible while he was still ego-less.
  • edited June 2009
    Have you ever made a mistake so bad that the head of department yelled out "Stemm-leeee!!" while shaking his fist at the air and between puffs on his cigar?

    HaHAhaHaHaHa! Flint-stoooooone!

    Please answer this one! Please please! :D:D
  • edited June 2009
    Mr. Stemmle, what happen your awesome looking beard? :(
  • edited June 2009
    Novotnus wrote: »
    I belive they don't have to - LeChuck broke free from the power of Ultimate Insult at the end of EMI - he attacked Ozzie and destroyed the talisman. I don't think that would be possible while he was still ego-less.

    Ah, I read that wrong. I interpreted that as LeChuck becoming demoralised and hitting himself on the head for failing, crushing Ozzie unintentionally as a result. Pretty silly :P

    I'm still confused how exactly 3 draws frees LeChuck him from Ozzies control though.
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