Arowx wrote:@xander I think we may be missing the valley, anything that raises an alarm completely changes the game from a stealth subversion style game to a hostage situation.
I think that, perhaps, you are missing the larger paradigm of the game. What has always been the most interesting feature of Subversion is the ground-up, systems-level design of the game. To illustrate why this is cool, consider the Metal Gear Solid games. Superficially, they are similar to the idea of Subversion that has been shown thus far. That is, it is a stealth/infiltration game. In these games, you can alert guards to your presence by, for instance, firing a gun without a suppressor. If a guard hears the gunshot, he will call for reinforcements. If you first shoot his radio, he can't call reinforcements, and so the alarm is not raised. The game notes the gunshot, checks if you have shot the radios of any nearby guards, and either raises the alarm or not. This is entirely scripted.
On the other hand, the design philosophy of Subversion is that the gun, the radio, &c. are all systems that work through some realistic mechanism. You fire a gunshot, and a nearby guard hears it. He has a radio, which he uses to call for backup. That radio signal is actually modeled (in some fashion), and is actually received by another system in the game, perhaps a security call center on the other side of city---a call center that is also modeled as a system. When some NPC in the call center gets the alarm, he calls the cops. The police are yet another system that are actually modeled. It may or may not take them time to get to you. You could shoot out the radio, or find the radio operator at the other end of the signal and take him out, or cut power to the call center (which, by the way, probably services several other buildings in addition to the one you are trying to rob, or you could slash the police vehicles' tires, or, or... Because it is a system that is actually modeled in its entirety, there are lots of ways that it could be attacked. Unfortunately, the whole system can probably be defeated by a pair of wire cutters, or some other combination of tools that the designers didn't foresee (again, naval nuking, anyone?).
So, honestly, I don't see how you can be sure that an alarm will be raised. You can create all of the sound-detectors and heart-rate-monitors you like, but all of these pieces of kit are wired into some system, and the quickest way to finish the mission is to find the highest level system and defeat it. That might mean shooting a guard in the head, turning off the power, or blowing up a building. That is the problem with attempting to model every system. It is a cool idea, but it makes it very difficult to build a game.
And, again, to reiterate a very important point, every potential fix that you propose involves the construction of more systems that have to interact with other systems in the game. This requires coding and testing, and, in the face of virtual certainty that players will
find a work around, how do you make a good game without losing the charm of the systems-level approach?
Arowx wrote:I think the games most obvious flaw is it's transparency, you already have the blueprint for the vault and security systems.
What if there was a meta game to obtain accurate blueprints and information on the buildings security systems?
I seem to recall that earlier demonstrations have shown that you don't automatically have such a transparent view. I remember a bank vault mission in which some time was spent scouting the building, getting blueprints, &c. Guards are not necessarily visible if you haven't hacked the right system or are standing right in front of them. Given these previous demonstrations, I think that your point is one that IV have already considered. Upon such consideration, IV still decided that there was no game.
Arowx wrote:Or to take the guards family hostage so you can waltz in without a shot fired?
Chris has previously mentioned that social engineering is a part of the game. I don't know if the scenario you suggest is one that he considered, but other similar kinds of approaches have definitely been discussed.
Arowx wrote:I think this meta game/big picture within a living breathing city would be the ideal version of Subversion, in my opinion.
I think that a simulation of a living, breathing city is a really cool idea. I think that systems-level design is nifty. I think that Mission Impossible was a great show, and that a game that captured the feel of that show would be awesome. I think that Subversion has the potential to combine all of these ideas, but I think that a couple of very smart, very motivated people have been working on it for a decade, and still haven't figured out how to make it work. Without seeing the behind-the-scenes discussions of Subversion, I don't know what avenues Chris went down, but I am inclined to believe him when he says that the game sucks, and I am also inclined to believe that there is basically nothing that we can suggest that he hasn't already tried.