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A year ago I would have thought the idea of playing a game like this with a controller would be ludicrous, verging on blasphemy. Now, however, I actually would like to play it like that, even though I don't have a TV. Its just more comfortable.


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Perhaps I am trolling also? After all, in discussing assertions, facts, declarations and such you can kind of go down the rabbit hole.

But no, I try to treat everyone honestly regardless of whether they may be trolling or not. I do not feel like a victim here.


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Actually, I think I may be remembering things wrong. It's complicated.

Edit - Never mind me, I can't believe I've forgotten so much. Disregard my previous comments except the part about intent.

Last edited by Robcat; 30/06/14 06:29 PM.

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Originally Posted by Robcat
Originally Posted by mbrown3
Everything everyone says is "in their opinion." Why should they have to state it outright?


I'm not disputing your right to state your opinion and I don't care if you want to necro a thread to make some offhand remark.


I'm not sure how/why it's a necro. It was on the first page of the forum, and I clicked and read it. I didn't pay attention to the date. I was adding my comments to the discussion (full of other opinions).

Originally Posted by Robcat
I just thought I'd point out that there is a difference between making a declarative statement and an assertion of fact. It can help argument (and communication generally) to clarify which we intend if it may read ambiguously for others.


Pray tell, what IS the difference between a declarative statement and an assertion of fact? It seems to me that if you have an issue with being able to tell if someone is stating their opinion or not, that's on you, not them. Perhaps it is logical to assume that if someone is posting something, it is most likely THEIR opinion, no?

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Careful. Apparently you're a troll and you are making a blanket assertion that will be taken as an attack by those who disagree with you, despite the fact that it is clearly you saying it (and thus is your opinion). People get testy when a viewpoint diverges from their own.

That said, you are 100% right.

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Originally Posted by mbrown3
Careful. Apparently you're a troll and you are making a blanket assertion that will be taken as an attack by those who disagree with you, despite the fact that it is clearly you saying it (and thus is your opinion). People get testy when a viewpoint diverges from their own.


Ha, I hear you. In much the same way I was attacking you right? wink As I say, don't mind me, I stayed up too late for the release lat night and started posting nonsense. Or, at least I was hardly clear. I just find the use of language when it comes to fact, opinion and so on to be very interesting and worth discussing, so I jumped into your discussion.

I never assume anyone is a troll and to repeat myself I have no issue with your original comment. I just thought I could add something regarding the, 'Why should they have to state it outright?' issue.

Let me try to address this again. I suspect you understand what a declarative statement is, but I'll try to show that I do also (I won't bother using some definition from a textbook or wiki or anything). A declarative statement can be either (but not limited to) an assertion/statement of fact (as widely accepted eg 'Larian Studios is in Belgium') or an opinion (eg 'If done properly, controller > kb/m every single day'). This is not always a black&white distinction - the form of a declarative statement can be obvious or ambiguous and often depends on how contentious the claim is. BTW I thought your statement was clearly an opinion, though I did wonder why you would bother posting it without substantiating it, not that it really matters. Internet forums are full of unsubstantiated assertions, one more won't hurt wink

There is no essential reason why someone would 'have to' clarify their statement with an, 'IMHO', 'in my view', 'I believe that' etc as this wouldn't affect the truth-value of the statement, and indeed this sort of superfluous writing is discouraged in argumentative essays.

However, I would argue that such phrases have value and can add meaning to a statement or text. They can help differentiate between whether the author intends to state a widely accepted view or venture a contentious opinion. They can add tone and show that the author recognizes that they are addressing a contentious or delicate topic, or they may act as a disclaimer for an opinion the author does not intend to substantiate with an argument.

In informal discourse and on internet forums in particular where it can be difficult to discern tone, I find such phrases very useful. Note the prevalence of IMHO and IMO as acronyms. If nothing else, the use of these phrases can help keep things polite and forestall people 'perceiving' arrogance, as happened with you when people jumped on your initial remark ITT.


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Originally Posted by Robcat
Ha, I hear you. In much the same way I was attacking you right? wink As I say, don't mind me, I stayed up too late for the release lat night and started posting nonsense. Or, at least I was hardly clear. I just find the use of language when it comes to fact, opinion and so on to be very interesting and worth discussing, so I jumped into your discussion.

I never assume anyone is a troll and to repeat myself I have no issue with your original comment. I just thought I could add something regarding the, 'Why should they have to state it outright?' issue.


For what it's worth, I wasn't trying to be defensive, simply rejecting this (fairly common idea) that people always have to qualify what they say with a disclaimer about it being opinion.

Originally Posted by Robcat
BTW I thought your statement was clearly an opinion, though I did wonder why you would bother posting it without substantiating it


See, that's just the thing. An opinion, by definition, does not need substantiation. A fact, on the other hand, does. I think we get this backwards too often on the interwebz. We assume "facts" stand for themselves, but everyone has to offer proof/justification for their opinion(s). That's absurd (using the denotation of the word) and completely backwards. If I intended my statement as fact, I would have given evidence to support it. The fact that I didn't offer such evidence should be an indication to the reader that it is not being offered as fact.

Of course, I could give the reasons for my opinion but THAT can be taken as if I'm attempting to state fact, which (of course) does not necessarily follow, but that's how it is often perceived. So I didn't bother, and people get upset that I didn't bother. Do you see the problem? Adding reasons would seem like I'm trying to state fact (and offering the "proof" to substantiate it)...reasons which would then be fully picked apart...but when I DON'T cite reasons, people (claim they) don't know I'm stating opinion. Rock, meet hard place.

Originally Posted by Robcat

However, I would argue that such phrases have value and can add meaning to a statement or text.


Of course they can, but why do they need to?

Originally Posted by Robcat
They can help differentiate between whether the author intends to state a widely accepted view or venture a contentious opinion. They can add tone and show that the author recognizes that they are addressing a contentious or delicate topic, or they may act as a disclaimer for an opinion the author does not intend to substantiate with an argument.


But, again, why is this necessary? An opinion doesn't need to always be identified as an opinion. Facts need to be substantiated, not opinions.

I hear what you're saying, and I agree with your logic...I just reject the whole construct as unnecessary and superfluous. Please note that my response(s) are not intended to be argumentative; rather, to truly engage this issue because I think all of this qualification of what everyone says has gotten way out of hand. Whether people think I'm trolling, or arrogant, or...whatever...is on them. (Yes, I could do some things to forestall that; probably effectively. But all of this over-qualification is a bit out of control).

Last edited by mbrown3; 01/07/14 04:54 AM.
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Originally Posted by mbrown3
...simply rejecting this (fairly common idea) that people always have to qualify what they say with a disclaimer about it being opinion.

Agreed, they don't usually have to. "There is no essential reason why someone would 'have to' clarify their statement with an, 'IMHO', 'in my view', 'I believe that' etc as this wouldn't affect the truth-value of the statement..."

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An opinion, by definition, does not need substantiation. A fact, on the other hand, does. I think we get this backwards too often on the interwebz. We assume "facts" stand for themselves, but everyone has to offer proof/justification for their opinion(s). That's absurd (using the denotation of the word) and completely backwards. If I intended my statement as fact, I would have given evidence to support it. The fact that I didn't offer such evidence should be an indication to the reader that it is not being offered as fact.

Sure, opinions don't need substantiation to be what they are (I can see how what I wrote is incorrect/absurd in the literal sense) - I was trying to say that without attempting to argue their truth/fact they are of little value, and so I wondered why you posted as you did. I get that sometimes it is just nice to express ourselves, our feelings, thoughts and opinions. Yet surely you see how I might wish you had given it some more context for me to derive meaning from. Stating that, "If done properly, controller > kb/m every single day" offers me nothing to allow me to believe what you say. Was this statement meant to be taken literally, or was it an expression of personal taste? Was it meant to troll people? How firmly do you hold this opinion? I am left wondering.

Again, I agree that it is not always necessary for you to elaborate for others to ascertain that this is indeed your opinion. I agree that opinions are often self-evident. I am not suggesting that we always need to announce our opinions for them to be recognized, nor am I criticising your original post (I already said I had no issue with it). I am simply arguing that phrases like 'in my opinion' have value beyond their apparent tautological use, and that you might have communicated more effectively had you used that or another similar phrase to provide more meaning to your statement. More to the point of our contention, I am claiming that opinions are not always self-evident, for example when the use of sarcasm implies the opposite, or when making a more complicated statement such as,'The Aboriginals of Australia are well known to have a rich cultural history', which by itself doesn't necessarily indicate this is also the author's opinion, beyond the opinion/claim that it is well known. So yes, sometimes opinions need to, or can benefit from, being clarified.

I was not disputing the self-evidence of your stated opinion. I was simply trying to add something relevant to the discussion, however unfortunately my original response did not make any literal sense which may have muddied the waters.

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Of course, I could give the reasons for my opinion but THAT can be taken as if I'm attempting to state fact, which (of course) does not necessarily follow, but that's how it is often perceived. So I didn't bother, and people get upset that I didn't bother. Do you see the problem? Adding reasons would seem like I'm trying to state fact (and offering the "proof" to substantiate it)...reasons which would then be fully picked apart...but when I DON'T cite reasons, people (claim they) don't know I'm stating opinion. Rock, meet hard place.

Yes, I 'think' ;-) I can see the problem, however the risk of having arguments interpreted merely as trying to prove one is right shouldn't stop us from engaging in them with each other. No one is obligated to defend their opinion on a public forum either, however surely you can't be surprised when people may want you to do so, especially when raising such a contentious topic as peripheral supremacy. Regardless, if you're damned if you do and damned if you don't, it is up to you whether you want to say anything substantial or not.

Originally Posted by mbrown3

Originally Posted by Robcat

However, I would argue that such phrases have value and can add meaning to a statement or text.


Of course they can, but why do they need to?

As I stated earlier in my post, the use of sarcasm and making complicated statements can sometimes create the need for clarity. Additionally, the context into which a statement is made can make the use of such qualifying phrases useful. For example when, posting an unsubstantiated contentious statement and not wishing to be mistaken for arrogant. Granted, this only necessitates a qualifying phrase (albeit a tautology or something similar) if your goal is to avoid having your tone misinterpreted.

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An opinion doesn't need to always be identified as an opinion. Facts need to be substantiated, not opinions.

Again, agreed.

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I hear what you're saying, and I agree with your logic...I just reject the whole construct as unnecessary and superfluous. Please note that my response(s) are not intended to be argumentative; rather, to truly engage this issue because I think all of this qualification of what everyone says has gotten way out of hand. Whether people think I'm trolling, or arrogant, or...whatever...is on them. (Yes, I could do some things to forestall that; probably effectively. But all of this over-qualification is a bit out of control).

Out of control? In some instances yes, like for example a response you received ITT! Personally, I generally have a greater problem with people lacking a polite tone, clarity and substantiation in their forum discourse than I do people going over the top qualifying their statements, though YMMV. I do wish that it didn't feel so necessary for me to qualify what I say at times and I do agree it can be a real problem.


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I'm adding controller support to D:OS. I'll have a first draft up tonight. Watch the forums.

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Originally Posted by Robcat
Sure, opinions don't need substantiation to be what they are (I can see how what I wrote is incorrect/absurd in the literal sense) - I was trying to say that without attempting to argue their truth/fact they are of little value, and so I wondered why you posted as you did. I get that sometimes it is just nice to express ourselves, our feelings, thoughts and opinions. Yet surely you see how I might wish you had given it some more context for me to derive meaning from. Stating that, "If done properly, controller > kb/m every single day" offers me nothing to allow me to believe what you say. Was this statement meant to be taken literally, or was it an expression of personal taste? Was it meant to troll people? How firmly do you hold this opinion? I am left wondering.


I understand what you're saying, but again...since I am the one that said it, without any other information, it should be assumed that what I'm saying is my opinion.

I also posted the way I did in response to some of the other comments in this thread...none of which, BTW, were called out in the same way mine were. Case in point: "If you want to play with a controller (2nd rate form of controlling games) play PS3 and Xbox games."

Originally Posted by Robcat
Again, I agree that it is not always necessary for you to elaborate for others to ascertain that this is indeed your opinion. I agree that opinions are often self-evident. I am not suggesting that we always need to announce our opinions for them to be recognized, nor am I criticising your original post (I already said I had no issue with it). I am simply arguing that phrases like 'in my opinion' have value beyond their apparent tautological use, and that you might have communicated more effectively had you used that or another similar phrase to provide more meaning to your statement.


This assumes, though, that my goal was to communicate effectively. Because it was an opinion, I don't care whether it was communicated effectively or not. I was simply sharing my opinion on the topic, in response to the many other opinions that were also offered here. Efficacy never crossed my mind (nor, I would argue, should it have).

Originally Posted by Robcat
More to the point of our contention, I am claiming that opinions are not always self-evident, for example when the use of sarcasm implies the opposite, or when making a more complicated statement such as,'The Aboriginals of Australia are well known to have a rich cultural history', which by itself doesn't necessarily indicate this is also the author's opinion, beyond the opinion/claim that it is well known. So yes, sometimes opinions need to, or can benefit from, being clarified.


Agreed. I do not believe that this is one of those cases, as it was neither sarcastic nor a complicated statement. It was clear, to the point, and overt...exactly what I intended it to be/say.

Originally Posted by Robcat
I was not disputing the self-evidence of your stated opinion. I was simply trying to add something relevant to the discussion, however unfortunately my original response did not make any literal sense which may have muddied the waters.


I understand.

Originally Posted by Robcat
Yes, I 'think' ;-) I can see the problem, however the risk of having arguments interpreted merely as trying to prove one is right shouldn't stop us from engaging in them with each other. No one is obligated to defend their opinion on a public forum either, however surely you can't be surprised when people may want you to do so, especially when raising such a contentious topic as peripheral supremacy. Regardless, if you're damned if you do and damned if you don't, it is up to you whether you want to say anything substantial or not.


Fair enough. And...as stated above, it is not of remote concern to me whether people want me to defend my opinion (especially when the only similar defense of the alternate opinions is a list of games in which controller support was implemented poorly...which has nothing to do with my original statement, since I clearly articulated, "if done properly").

Originally Posted by Robcat
As I stated earlier in my post, the use of sarcasm and making complicated statements can sometimes create the need for clarity. Additionally, the context into which a statement is made can make the use of such qualifying phrases useful. For example when, posting an unsubstantiated contentious statement and not wishing to be mistaken for arrogant. Granted, this only necessitates a qualifying phrase (albeit a tautology or something similar) if your goal is to avoid having your tone misinterpreted.


Sorry...I meant "why do they need to" in the context of someone stating an opinion, not in general.

Originally Posted by Robcat
Out of control? In some instances yes, like for example a response you received ITT! Personally, I generally have a greater problem with people lacking a polite tone, clarity and substantiation in their forum discourse than I do people going over the top qualifying their statements, though YMMV. I do wish that it didn't feel so necessary for me to qualify what I say at times and I do agree it can be a real problem.


I generally don't have an issue with polite tones, clarity, and/or substantiation, for all of the reasons I mentioned above, namely that clarity and substantiation seem unnecessary for the statement of an opinion (also, tone can be easily read into anything, accurately or...more often, I would argue...inaccurately). And, if we're honest, all of the posts in this thread about controller support have been opinions. It's not like anyone offered any truly substantive affirmation of their perspective. Nor, I would contend, should they have to. But I hear where you're coming from.

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Originally Posted by mbrown3

I understand what you're saying, but again...since I am the one that said it, without any other information, it should be assumed that what I'm saying is my opinion.

For sure, I agree with this. I mentioned earlier that I try not to assume anyone is ever trolling - this illustrates why. At this point it seems is clear we have no major point of contention. I agree that people have the right to post their opinions without justification (and to be semantic these would no longer be opinions but arguments), and unless I am mistaken you agree that there is value in clarification even if unnecessary to one's purposes. It has been an interesting discussion though smile

Quote

I also posted the way I did in response to some of the other comments in this thread...none of which, BTW, were called out in the same way mine were. Case in point: "If you want to play with a controller (2nd rate form of controlling games) play PS3 and Xbox games."

Well to be fair, this is not entirely true...
Originally Posted by Bonerbill
Originally Posted by pauljonas

If you want to play with a controller (2nd rate form of controlling games) play PS3 and Xbox games.


I really hate elitist staments like this from my fellow PC gamers...


Originally Posted by apoc_reg
Originally Posted by pauljonas
If you want to play with a controller (2nd rate form of controlling games) play PS3 and Xbox games.


What a prat!

... though I certainly sympathise with your frustration in simply adding your opinion to the thread only to be accused of not having one (an opinion) and being told not to post it wink I can see why the poster may have reacted that way and what they possibly meant, but that isn't necessarily very helpful.

Originally Posted by mbrown3
Originally Posted by Robcat
Again, I agree that it is not always necessary for you to elaborate for others to ascertain that this is indeed your opinion. I agree that opinions are often self-evident. I am not suggesting that we always need to announce our opinions for them to be recognized, nor am I criticising your original post (I already said I had no issue with it). I am simply arguing that phrases like 'in my opinion' have value beyond their apparent tautological use, and that you might have communicated more effectively had you used that or another similar phrase to provide more meaning to your statement.


This assumes, though, that my goal was to communicate effectively. Because it was an opinion, I don't care whether it was communicated effectively or not. I was simply sharing my opinion on the topic, in response to the many other opinions that were also offered here. Efficacy never crossed my mind (nor, I would argue, should it have).

Fair enough, as I said later in that same post, "Granted, this only necessitates a qualifying phrase (albeit a tautology or something similar) if your goal is to avoid having your tone misinterpreted." Personally, I usually consider how my comments might be read and how effective I might be communicating in any given context, though this is in no way essential for anyone (myself included) to state their opinion. I did not mean to challenge your choice of words so much as simply illustrate my point of view.

Originally Posted by mbrown3
Agreed. I do not believe that this is one of those cases, as it was neither sarcastic nor a complicated statement. It was clear, to the point, and overt...exactly what I intended it to be/say.

Yes, neither do I... that it was apparently provocative enough to be taken for trolling is beside your point. As I have repeatedly mentioned, I have no issue with your original comment (beyond wishing it was more meaningful, but that is not your problem). If it wasn't for the resulting exchange with Elenoe I would never have been interested enough to post a response.

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... it is not of remote concern to me whether people want me to defend my opinion (especially when the only similar defense of the alternate opinions is a list of games in which controller support was implemented poorly...which has nothing to do with my original statement, since I clearly articulated, "if done properly").

I would argue this is an over-simplification of the thread and points raised (though yeah it wasn't exactly an in-depth debate about the pros and cons of each input system), but this doesn't discredit your overall point. We are free to care as much or as little as we like about how others may read us, and about how much we would like to elaborate.

Quote
I meant "why do they need to" in the context of someone stating an opinion, not in general.

Ah, I get you, understood. Well, generally they don't need to, or shouldn't need to wink

Originally Posted by mbrown3

Originally Posted by Robcat
Out of control? In some instances yes, like for example a response you received ITT! Personally, I generally have a greater problem with people lacking a polite tone, clarity and substantiation in their forum discourse than I do people going over the top qualifying their statements, though YMMV. I do wish that it didn't feel so necessary for me to qualify what I say at times and I do agree it can be a real problem.


I generally don't have an issue with polite tones, clarity, and/or substantiation, for all of the reasons I mentioned above, namely that clarity and substantiation seem unnecessary for the statement of an opinion (also, tone can be easily read into anything, accurately or...more often, I would argue...inaccurately). And, if we're honest, all of the posts in this thread about controller support have been opinions. It's not like anyone offered any truly substantive affirmation of their perspective. Nor, I would contend, should they have to. But I hear where you're coming from.

That's fair, people engage with texts differently, who knew. Good point about tone (I wouldn't want to argue about whether tone is more often interpreted accurately or inaccurately, that seems quite the quagmire, if no doubt interesting).

Yes, nothing was really established regarding the kb&m vs controller debate, if it can be called that. I (generally) wasn't using the word 'substantiation' in its definitive sense, more to describe the formation of argument through logical reasoning to give weight to an opinion/perspective - the prior sense is seldom achieved. Regardless, no one is obliged to provide substantiation for their opinions in either sense, though of course we may want to for argument's sake.

On the other hand it wasn't as if the thread was merely all opinions and non sequiturs. There was some valid argument raising interesting points - food for thought that people could consider or investigate further at their leisure. It was a valuable discussion.



p.s. Bit of an epic derail but I am unrepentant! It has been worthwhile.


*edited to fix quoting

Last edited by Robcat; 03/07/14 07:09 AM.

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All fair points. I think we're on the same page.

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Adding controller support should be after the LAST point in the TODO list for Larian if even to be in that list at all.
"Oh, can't i just lie on the coach lazily and play a game while someone puts food in my mouth."
Sorry for the sarcasm that some people could find a bit offensive to them but really i wanted to express my negative attitude towards requests of that sort towards the developer.
Don't we have enough of this mentality already breaking enough games?
No, please, Larian, don't even waste a line of code for that. Use the resource for something much much more important and in tone with the game goal and culture.

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@mbrown3 - Seems that way wink

I'll leave things with a joke... The Big Bang Theory - Sheldon's mother

Sheldon: ...I'll spend the rest of my life here in Texas, trying to teach evolution to creationists.

Sheldon's mother: You watch your mouth Shelly, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

Sheldon: Evolution isn't an opinion, it's fact.

Sheldon's mother: And that is your opinion.


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Originally Posted by pauljonas
Controller support for games like Xcom is what ruined it for me. I don't think Larian should even consider doing a controller version as this would probably impact on the K and M version, same as Xcom.
If you want to play with a controller (2nd rate form of controlling games) play PS3 and Xbox games.

What are you on Willis? XCOM is brilliant with a controller.

I'm as Master Race as the next guy, I've got a mech keyboard, I have a Naga etc, but controllers are a valid option for PC gaming, get with 2014 homie.

The mentality of "oh, you prefer using a controller, you must be an imbecile" needs to stop, period.

It's just another way of controlling a game, and for a lot of us (with big TVs/comfy couches/beds by their PCs) it's a blessing and a highly valued additional option.

Note I used the word "option", as it's not normally something that is a massive undertaking (if Pinnacle can do it, I'm sure the super skilled devs at Larian could wack it out in a millisecond), and has the potential to bring over more of your dreaded console sub-humans (like myself in a way) to the game, which can only be a good thing.

Obviously, someone will mod this in eventually, but it would be cool if Larian took the first step and did it also. I would like to play in equal parts at my gaming desk (which I do actually prefer for this I reckon) and part on my bed which has a LED TV in front of it hooked up to the PC, for when it's cold (aka now, here in NZ it's -2 degrees!).

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Originally Posted by IndySandbagTrick
It's just another way of controlling a game, and for a lot of us (with big TVs/comfy couches/beds by their PCs) it's a blessing and a highly valued additional option.
Unfortunately, it's not that simple. Even the possibility of controller support can have subtle but significant affects on game design.

One common one is party size - most controllers have four buttons and most RPGs offering controller support have a party size limit of four characters. Nice and convenient for controller users, but a limitation for those who want larger parties.

Another controller limitation on RPGs - inventory. If you have to use a D-pad or joystick to select items, you need to impose limits on inventory size to ensure anything can be accessed quickly. If you limit inventory size, you have to limit the number of usable objects in-game also. In the case of D:OS which is absolutely swarming with objects, this would be a significant change - as it would have been for Divine Divinity, the first RPG with object overload.

The most common restriction however is the inability to do precise selection with a controller. Mouse users can select items with near pixel-perfect accuracy whereas with a controller (or joystick) you'd struggle to get within 10 pixels. In FPS shooters, this can be compensated for through lazy-targeting (counting anything close to an object as a hit, rather than requiring an exact aim). In RTS games with large numbers of units the only way to handle this is to *not* have large numbers of units - either lower the numbers or have units auto-grouped and allow group selection only.

The effect of this on D:OS? Spell targeting for one - spells currently requiring exact selection of location (like creature summons) would have to be re-engineered to remove the need for precise selection (having any summons appear adjacent to the caster for example). Attack spells would have to be limited to "valid" targets only (like enemies in combat) removing tactical options like dropping a fireball on a nearby pool of oil. And object interaction (like moving chests) would have to be limited to scripted actions only available at certain points rather than the current anything-anywhere approach.

So the addition of controller support is not a simple matter for D:OS and it could not be done without fundamental changes that would rob the game of its distinctiveness and individuality.

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Originally Posted by Aspar
Adding controller support should be after the LAST point in the TODO list for Larian if even to be in that list at all.
"Oh, can't i just lie on the coach lazily and play a game while someone puts food in my mouth."
Sorry for the sarcasm that some people could find a bit offensive to them but really i wanted to express my negative attitude towards requests of that sort towards the developer.
Don't we have enough of this mentality already breaking enough games?
No, please, Larian, don't even waste a line of code for that. Use the resource for something much much more important and in tone with the game goal and culture.


Few posts are as asinine as this one. Thank you for lightening the mood!

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Originally Posted by Stargazer
Unfortunately, it's not that simple. Even the possibility of controller support can have subtle but significant affects on game design.

One common one is party size - most controllers have four buttons and most RPGs offering controller support have a party size limit of four characters. Nice and convenient for controller users, but a limitation for those who want larger parties.

Another controller limitation on RPGs - inventory. If you have to use a D-pad or joystick to select items, you need to impose limits on inventory size to ensure anything can be accessed quickly. If you limit inventory size, you have to limit the number of usable objects in-game also. In the case of D:OS which is absolutely swarming with objects, this would be a significant change - as it would have been for Divine Divinity, the first RPG with object overload.

The most common restriction however is the inability to do precise selection with a controller. Mouse users can select items with near pixel-perfect accuracy whereas with a controller (or joystick) you'd struggle to get within 10 pixels. In FPS shooters, this can be compensated for through lazy-targeting (counting anything close to an object as a hit, rather than requiring an exact aim). In RTS games with large numbers of units the only way to handle this is to *not* have large numbers of units - either lower the numbers or have units auto-grouped and allow group selection only.

The effect of this on D:OS? Spell targeting for one - spells currently requiring exact selection of location (like creature summons) would have to be re-engineered to remove the need for precise selection (having any summons appear adjacent to the caster for example). Attack spells would have to be limited to "valid" targets only (like enemies in combat) removing tactical options like dropping a fireball on a nearby pool of oil. And object interaction (like moving chests) would have to be limited to scripted actions only available at certain points rather than the current anything-anywhere approach.


The problem is that there are many similar games that did this very effectively (Skyrim, DA:O), so it absolutely can be done in a way that does not take away from the experience.

Originally Posted by Stargazer
So the addition of controller support is not a simple matter for D:OS and it could not be done without fundamental changes that would rob the game of its distinctiveness and individuality.


If the game's distinctiveness and individuality would be compromised by adding support for a peripheral that MANY gamers prefer, it has a lot more problems than anyone has realized.

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As I recall, a Pillars of Eternity developer spoke briefly about the difficulties in designing that style of game (isometric, party-based, tactical combat, cursor-over interactivity) to explain why they are focusing on mouse&keyboard, and not providing official controller support. Obsidian considers the mouse&keyboard to be most suited to that style of game. Perhaps someone could find the link.

I was under the impression Dragon Age: Origins was a sub-par experience on consoles due to the difficulties Bioware faced implementing the tactical (top-down) camera and controller interface when porting the game from PC. However, it will be interesting to see if they manage to create an equally good experience using both interfaces in Inquisition, as they have been aiming for both systems from the get go. Personally, I have far greater hopes that PoE will be a game I'll enjoy, though what Bioware manages to achieve can certainly inform the debate.

It is not a trivial thing to do properly (though the SkyUI mod makes a mockery of Bethesda) and requires the game to be designed to account for each interface type. So there is merit in the argument that to make the best game possible one needs to focus on a singular interface, in terms of cost-effectiveness of development. That is not to say that controller support is impossible to do well or undesirable, simply that it is understandable that a development team may choose to focus on the type of interface device they consider to work best for their game.

Last edited by Robcat; 04/07/14 05:24 AM.

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Originally Posted by Robcat
As I recall, a Pillars of Eternity developer spoke briefly about the difficulties in designing that style of game (isometric, party-based, tactical combat, cursor-over interactivity) to explain why they are focusing on mouse&keyboard, and not providing official controller support. Obsidian considers the mouse&keyboard to be most suited to that style of game. Perhaps someone could find the link.

I was under the impression Dragon Age: Origins was a sub-par experience on consoles due to the difficulties Bioware faced implementing the tactical (top-down) camera and controller interface when porting the game from PC. However, it will be interesting to see if they manage to create an equally good experience using both interfaces in Inquisition, as they have been aiming for both systems from the get go. Personally, I have far greater hopes that PoE will be a game I'll enjoy, though what Bioware manages to achieve can certainly inform the debate.

It is not a trivial thing to do properly (though the SkyUI mod makes a mockery of Bethesda) and requires the game to be designed to account for each interface type. So there is merit in the argument that to make the best game possible one needs to focus on a singular interface, in terms of cost-effectiveness of development. That is not to say that controller support is impossible to do well or undesirable, simply that it is understandable that a development team may choose to focus on the type of interface device they consider to work best for their game.


DA:O was awesome on console. No control problems at all (or UI, for that matter).

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