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Will these mods make for a good game?:

Discussion in 'BG2: Throne of Bhaal (Classic)' started by Klorox, Oct 10, 2006.

  1. Baronius

    Baronius Mental harmony dispels the darkness ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    If standards are used in any process, e.g. in industry, it ensures quality is always the same. (Not better. Same.)

    I know it very well how important standards are. However, I don't think that they should be compulsory in a non-profit activity as modding which focuses on creativity and fun, primarily. While standards have many advantages, they also restrict developer freedom (hence less errors and problems). Consequently it may limit human creativity and imagination. Which is not wanted in case of mods. Standards are needed, WeiDU is a good one, but let's not attack and despise those authors who don't follow every expectation of the modder majority, of the mainstream. It's their freedom.

    An incorrectly written mod will corrupt the game, which is unpleasant, but no one will die or injure, no property and value will be destroyed. Unlike in the reality, where standards are usually compulsory if a company wants a better rank in the market. Certain standards, such as the ones of industrial safety, are compulsory to every company where applicable. No wonder, as the health and lives of workers are at stake. Another good example can be financial standards. And so on.
     
  2. Ironhawk Skylord

    Ironhawk Skylord If a tree kills alone in the forest, does it make

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    Guys ,really. You are taking this too far.

    I mean look at the subject?

    All Klorox was asking was if could he get a good game with the forementioned mods.

    And you are making this your personal battlefield? Is it worth it?

    Or is there some of you who at least can see it's a little bit funny? ;)

    I have a suggestion for you, and please don't rip my head off or suggest where I can put an object roughly the size of Elminster and his hat ;)

    Why don't you post some mod-related topics for example:

    Baldurdash contra G3 Fixpack

    WeiDu contra other methods of modding

    or for example

    How to make a mod - suggestions

    I could imagine it could be pretty exciting to read :)

    Or perhaps you already done that? Well I am new so if you have I apologize ;)

    But it seems to me you already has duked it out on your respective communities or am I wrong?
     
  3. SimDing0 Gems: 9/31
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    Yes, we know I'm a very bad person, but I was thinking more of whether you reckon Baronius has justified his role of leading the "tweak! tweak!" procession.

    (Incidentally, I'm intrigued as to what I've been posting here that's riled you so. I recall a curt post about non-WeiDU mods, and some amused/bemused argument on my part later, but I don't think I've ever deposited a horde of trolls on your doorstep...?)
     
  4. Andyr Gems: 14/31
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    Baronius, I am in no way trying to attack BWL or tell you how to run it. I only pointed out that people who have mods hosted at BWL tend to spend little time modding at other sites.
     
  5. Baronius

    Baronius Mental harmony dispels the darkness ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    You mentioned Vlad's statement, and it's usually quoted in negative context. (In fact, it somewhat became the synonym of the "disobedient modder", who "should be exiled from the community".) But if you have listed it as a fact, it's okay (I think you did). However, I also needed to point out that certain things you referred to as things contrary to my opinion, actually didn't have any contradiction. My reply following the quote from your post was directed at more modders actually, to make it clear how BWL's public relations look like.

    SimDing0: If you still think that it's about the "tweak tweak procession", you indeed don't understand the point. I advise you to re-read Felinoid's post.
     
  6. Felinoid

    Felinoid Who did the what now? ★ SPS Account Holder

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    Yes, I'm sure we should all be shocked and dismayed that someone whose advice was arbitrarily rejected might bring it up again. Now, I haven't seen the badgering you refer to, but then again I only browse SP, RPG Dungeon, and CoM (and only certain subforums on the last two). And to be perfectly honest, between time constraints and the atmospheres I've encountered browsing some other forums, I have little intention of branching out. However, if you could link some of this following-you-around, I'd be much obliged and might be able to provide some of the feedback you desire.
    Actually, I was referring mostly to threads in which you've overreacted to simple statements, or gone on the defensive the instant anyone questioned you. You've never been anything but pleasant when not confronted, but when you are...
     
  7. SimDing0 Gems: 9/31
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    This definititely falls into the "I just can't believe it!" category. You actually think something's been arbitrarily rejected, in spite of a whole page of argument to the contrary and Cam's constant reminders that he doesn't reject things without reason? And what's more, you're so sure of it that you can afford to be sarcastic? Looks like I arbitrarily, uh, lose. Sigh.

    Regardless of how much of a wally I think Baronius is being, you will not catch me rejecting mod feedback based on the source. (Looking closely, you might observe that a number of the Fixpack contributors think I'm an *******... wow, it censors "*******"? Anyhow, this does not preclude my working on the project with them and acknowledging their viewpoints.) I consider providing useful feedback to be a favour rather than an attack, and I know Cam feels the same way. This is partly why we've tried to coerce Baronius and Sikret into defending their stance--conflict helps refine the solution. However, all I can really take away from this is that I need to abstract into reading people's minds and that you've created an unfortunate image of us suppressing feedback from some poor "rebellion", which is a great shame.

    [ October 12, 2006, 11:03: Message edited by: SimDing0 ]
     
  8. Sikret Gems: 13/31
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    Actually CamDawg didn't offer any sound or valid argument. all he said were two things:

    First, he repeated the Oversight mod' logic that everyone who attacks the party onsight is evil. We have refuted this repeatedly and there is no need to repeat it again.

    Second, he tried to put the burden of proof on our side by asking us to show that TN was the correct alignment. As mentioned before, this was very ridiculous, because the burden of proof is actually on the BG2 fixpack team to show us that LE is the only correct alignment. Otherwise, as stated before, the alignment was chosen arbitrarily and can at best fall in the field of "tweaks" (rather than fixes).

    Asking for more concrete examples is just a jest, because human's mind is normally capabale of assessing abstract rules without repeatedly asking for concrete examples. Only primitive and simple minds may repeatedlt ask for concrete examples.

    The bottom line is that many of the BG2 fixpacks alleged fixes are actuallt tweaks and the fixpack is not recommended to players who are looking for pure fixes.
     
  9. CamDawg

    CamDawg The gaze of the Wolf reaches into our soul Veteran

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    No, I provided a number of reasons--you've just chosen to focus upon this one to the exclusion of others. Not only that you're leaving out the critical bit there, too: the pirates would rather kill interlopers because it threatens their commercial enterprise, from which we conclude they value human life so little that they're willing to kill with very little provocation. All characters who attack the party on sight are not evil and the alignment fixes reflect this. To try and say this is some broad principle that we're applying is disingenuous and wrong.

    For me, the most disappointing aspect of all this is that we really do have a project with an open process and lots of contributors, and it's being actively used by two people as a 'wedge' issue to try and create a sense of 'us vs. them' mentality. It's not feedback of 'I think it contains tweaks', it's feedback of 'we know it contains more tweaks' or opinions-stated-as-fact like Sikret's post above. As Sim said a few posts up, I have no problem with Bar following me around on every thread with 'I think it sucks because...' instead of the pseudo-factual statement of 'we know it contains more tweaks'.

    I usually don't engage in threads like this and I've been thinking long and hard about why this one has really struck a chord in me. It really reminds me of the bad old days when Neil, Ken, jcompton, and all sorts of modders would get into huge fights over just about everything, large and small. The 'silo mentality' prevailed. After TeamBG, at least four other sites were started because, frankly, everyone didn't get along. Regardless of who was right or wrong, the net results were always the same: projects and efforts would have been much better if everyone could have set aside their egos and worked together. I don't think a better example exists than BGT and Tutu--the original BGT author didn't want to work with the Tutu folks because they were from another site. Think of all the modding efforts that have been wasted running essentialy parallel projects, fixing the same bugs, and porting mods for one to the other (and supporting them). As someone who worked on both, it fills me with utter frustration that so much time was wasted and how much better the platform could be.

    We've had a real nice stretch of everyone getting along. The silo mentality is gone, more folks have more projects scattered across forums, and in general there's just been a lot more cooperation. The result has been a lot of new mods, a general increase in their quality, and they work together nicely. The goal is not to 'assimilate' or 'oppress' other viewpoints--I'd be happy with, at best, simple cooperation or, at worst, live and let live. It's their perogative to act and say as they wish and no one has said otherwise.

    But we're not going to act upon feedback in the form of unsupported assertions or contentions that X is wrong without logical support. You've already seen examples where we've received reasonable feedback that something is wrong and changed it. If Bar and Sikret were to provide the same, their feedback might result in changes as well--instead we get cherry picking of posts and the whole 'the mainstream is tryig to oppress us' routine when we ask for a logical rebuttal to our arguments.
     
  10. Sikret Gems: 13/31
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    This was also replied to.

    Even Neutral criminals might do the same and it doesn't warrant that they are evil. When you breach the walls of their hideout, it is natural that they react. They see you as enemies (red circle) in the same way that you see them as enemies. Who says that only evil characters can be envolved in that sort of commercial enterprise?

    Moreover, the main question was whether LE is the *only* possible alignment or not. It is not! Hence, you have chosen LE (among all other possibilities) quite arbitrarily. This much is enough to show that you have tweaked their alignments (rather than fixing them), because fixing requires no arbitrary decision making.
     
  11. CamDawg

    CamDawg The gaze of the Wolf reaches into our soul Veteran

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    You're cherry picking again. They're involved in illegal activites, with a high probablity that those activities include slave trading. All things considered, they're evil.

    Demonstrably false. If you actually used this standard, you wouldn't recommend anything other than the official patch.

    Viconia lacks a proficiency star; as a cleric of level X she should have five pips total but only has four. Where does that missing pip go? Saying that we don't know for sure where the developers wanted the extra pip does not invalidate the fact that the missing pip is a bug, or that we're going to have to make a decision where to place it. If we were to exclude anything that falls into this situation, the Fixpack--and for that matter, Baldurdash or any previous bug fixing efforts--would quickly approach the size of zero bytes.

    I assert that TN is incorrect for the reasons I've stated; that you think the pirates might truly be NE or CE instead of our choice of LE doesn't invalidate my assertion than TN is incorrect. You'll have to show that they are TN to back up your claim of tweak, otherwise we're simply arguing over the best way to fix a known bug.
     
  12. Sikret Gems: 13/31
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    I think this thread at least showed that your claim of being open to criticisms was nothing but a joke.

    Let's leave it right now. Both sides said what they needed to say. You are just repeating the same old method of attacking Baldurdash instead of defending your position. I have nothing to add to my previous arguments and I see them as conclusively valid and sound.
     
  13. CamDawg

    CamDawg The gaze of the Wolf reaches into our soul Veteran

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    On the contrary, I think I've shown that I'm more than willing to patiently engage my critics and listen to them. That a compelling argument never materialized is not a reflection upon that.
     
  14. Sikret Gems: 13/31
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    Yes, you just keep patiently playing with words. When you are not willing to admit such obvious errors in your work, how do you expect us to help you on more controversial issues?
     
  15. CamDawg

    CamDawg The gaze of the Wolf reaches into our soul Veteran

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    I'm more than willing to stand on my record as to whether I accept criticism/feedback and whether I'm willing to admit where I've screwed up.
     
  16. ister Gems: 4/31
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    As a user I'm mostly interested in a true "minimalist" set of fixes. And questions like that of the pirates worry me. And yes, I do think that there are tweaks in baldurdash as well. But issues like that of the pirates worry me.

    On the question of the pirates I don't think either of you has stated the burden of proof correctly. To me the burden of proof is not to show that LE is the only possible alignment for the pirates, nor to show that LE is a better alignment than TN. The question that needs to be addressed is "Is TN a reasonable alignment for the pirates." If TN is a reasonable alignment, making them LE is a tweak. If TN is not a reasonable argument for them than making them LE is indeed a fix.

    This is obviously subjective and the decision on what's a fix and what's a tweak always will be. But to me the arguments as to why TN is an unreasonable alignment for the pirates are unconvincing. (Although I think CG is plausible - if the authorities have very high tariffs to protect local producers or something - and we have no way to know that. And CG means I think that society is basically all about opressing people.)

    They are engaged in illegal activity. To me this basically means that they aren't LG or LN. Perhaps they are involved in slavery. But there are all sorts of reasons why TN NPCs might be incolved in smuggling. At the very least it's worth pointing out the Saemon Havarian is true neutral in the game.

    Ultimately I don't care about the pirates alignment. What I care about is understanding where the project (fixpack or baldurdash) draws the line between a tweak and a fix. And because my tastes are very conservative I'm using baldurdash. In the end there is no objective answer to what's a tweak and what's a fix.
     
  17. SimDing0 Gems: 9/31
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    Concur. I think this is what Cam's been trying to say too.

    Saemon Havarian favours escape over combat. The pirates here clearly have no qualms about fighting you: they don't even grace you with a dialogue.

    To take a "real life" scenario, if you are exploring some caves--perhaps you enjoy stalagtites--and a disgruntled smuggler shoots you in the face, would you contend that he is a fairly harmless neutral fellow?

    Let's set aside, for an instant, whether the alignment choices are, in fact, correct.

    One of the points we've been trying to make is that Baldurdash is, if anything, vastly less conservative than the Fixpack. As I mention earlier, there's the rogue stone plot it introduces which is clearly beyond the realms of bugfixes. (Fixpack does not include this.) The key difference is that the Fixpack has enjoyed Baronius and Sikret waxing lyrical since its release, while nobody has cast a similar eye over everyone's favourite Baldurash.

    I'm aware that a newer project is bound to attract a greater degree of criticism, and for this I'm glad--it helps weed out erroneous fixes--but I can't help feeling that "because my tastes are very conservative I'm using baldurdash" is simply falling into a trap that Baronius has established for reasons unknown. Even if the Fixpack includes arbitrary tweaks to alignment, which I maintain that it does not, I still recommend it as a more "conservative" option than Baldurdash. The notion that spurious alignment changes are somehow worse than including an openly arbitrary quest confuses me. Maybe I should start promoting Quest Pack as a fixpack--it doesn't change anyone's alignment. :)
     
  18. Mongerman Gems: 8/31
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    I second what ister says. I doubt most people notice what alignment the pirates are as they are being crushed under the bootheel of a bhaal spawn. And considering this is a game where a lawful good cleric of lathender can murder townsfolk, then make a arbitary donation at a temple to raise his reputation, the pirates do not have to be evil.
     
  19. Felinoid

    Felinoid Who did the what now? ★ SPS Account Holder

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    True enough. "Ignored" seems a much more appropriate term now that I think about it.
    I've already addressed this and been ignored. It is feedback and not an attack; you are simply misinterpreting it because of the source.
    They have done so. You ignored them. The lot of you (both sides) really seem to have gotten rather good at talking past each other, which is another part of the problem I outlined.
    Wrong. All we have to prove is that it's possible. Now, I have no real objection to them being LE; it certainly fits better than TN. (Though I think not as well as others, that's your choice and ultimately not the point.) But it does belong in the area of tweaks because they could be TN. There are any number of reasons why TN characters would choose to smuggle (three of which are in my alignment analysis on the previous page). Not to mention that two of your assertions to attempt to prove that they are evil are patently false.
    Two things wrong with this. The first is: Where the heck did that idea come from? Of all the times I've encountered them, I have not once thought that they might be slavers. Especially considering that all you find in their hideout is gems (frequently smuggling material) and gold. No slaves.

    The second: more of a qualm about slavery not necessarily being treated as evil depending on the society they came from. Were the Founding Fathers evil because they owned slaves? I sincerely doubt it. Was the entirety of the South evil because they fought for it? I refuse to believe a blanket statement like that. The same can be applied to pirates who come from a place where slavery is similarly commonplace. Brynnlaw, for example, with its numerous 'courtesans' and even the little kid who steals a few gold from you for his master. Of course, this whole thing becomes moot if they aren't involved in slavery.
    Um, yes they do. The Sea's Bounty captain's exact words are, "What?! Some lout has discovered our hide-out, here, has <HESHE>? Blast! I paid that bloody Thumb good money for secrecy! Kill the bloody spy, mates! I'll have no word of this leaking out!" While this could indicate little value for others' lives, it could also simply indicate value for their own. The punishment for smuggling in medieval times was often death.
     
  20. CamDawg

    CamDawg The gaze of the Wolf reaches into our soul Veteran

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    I've listened to Sikret's arguments and found them lacking--certainly not the same as ignoring them. I sincerely hope that they (or anyone, really) goes through and puts all of the Fixpack changes to similar scrutiny as the end result can only be a better Fixpack. As irked as I am by statements such as 'we all know it's tweaks' I'm thrilled we've progressed to specific examples.

    The big problem with this idea and others in this vein--"you should only change what you know is developer intent for sure" is a common parallel--is that at its logical conclusion you can not change anything. Irenicus is coded CG at the Tree of Life; perhaps he donated a few million gold at the Temple of Rilifane on his way through Suldenesselar or adopted a few thousand kittens. The LG bandits that hold Jaheira ransom may be on their way home from the Amnish Law Enforcement charity ball and are just drunk. Perhaps the LN paladin that's sent by the Order to help you clear out Bodhi's lair is really a Helmite sleeper agent who's been faking his divine paladin abilities. Maybe the NG otyugh in the opening dungeon is really (and I mean really) good with kids.

    Kish used the same standard that Bioware used in BG--assign alignments based on how they act in the game. (And just in case anyone missed it the first time around: evil alignments are not assigned to someone just because they attack the party.) Anything else is speculation and can be used to justify anything.
     
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