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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 9:19 pm 
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The Noble Robot wrote:
You must be using some unknown permutation of the word "plain" which I was not previously aware of.

I'd say he obfuscatedly told us...

From here:
greydragon wrote:
Tesseract wrote:
Is the progress of the lake lighting effort (brightness of the lake and progress towards a day/night cycle) directly tied to the sum of all avatars' pellet scores?

Yes.

People putting bad pellets into the lake effect the outcome of the lake too.

If that's not a straight answer, I don't know what is.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 10:02 pm 
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I don't think you quite understand,

We all know that Cyan was going to / might in the future do something with the numbers. That is what GreyDragon is refering to, when he says that pellets matter. Obviously, they'll use the numbers somehow.

Peope were upset because the numbers don't appear to actually do anything. Increasing pellet score doesn't actually change the pump meter, or make the lake brighter. Nothing you do with the pellets will actually change anything, ever. The only change that ever happens is changes Cyan makes. Cyan alone controls the state of the world. If Cyan decides to follow the data, they may move the meter up or down . But if they dont, then nothing happens.

The problem with Cyan making the changes, is that (historically) they don't keep up their end of this llusion. Because of this, things appear like they don't matter. When GreyDragon has to come in here and tell us "things matter", you know theres a problem. -- Explorers don't see the connection we are told exists, and the illusion of control is shattered.


No one would have known that the marker missions didnt actually do anything, if Cyan had used the data to update the display at appropriate times. But they didnt, so when all of a sudden, one day it is just ready and full, people got upset. The illusion of control players had, was shattered. It's like a Wizard of OZ - Man behind the curtain moment. Nothing you do matters, unless Cyan decides it matters.

Same with the lake meter, no one would have known it didn't actually do anything, if Cyan kept up their end of the illusion by making the meter rise as pellet scores collected. But when they didn't, people got upset.



It makes people angry



Most people (i'd gather) aren't mad that that the meter doesnt automatically update -- they're mad because Cyan isn't keeping up their end of this illusion that players choices matter.

If players actions don't appear to matter, why should they bother?

EDITed for unclear wording. I type faster than I think :oops:


Last edited by Maxsilver5721 on Fri Aug 10, 2007 10:10 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 10:07 pm 
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Right. I think we can all agree that it would be much better if the lake-o-meter's display updated. Same with the GZ imager.

But then again, I don't quite understand the part about getting upset that actions in the game don't actually "do anything". It's a computer program. Pushing the button on the oven doesn't actually bake pellets, pellets just appear in the machine because Cyan decided that they should appear there after a few hours. The only reason anything appears to happen is that Cyan programmed it to work that way.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 10:20 pm 
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Quote:
But then again, I don't quite understand the part about getting upset that actions in the game don't actually "do anything". It's a computer program. Pushing the button on the oven doesn't actually bake pellets, pellets just appear in the machine because Cyan decided that they should appear there after a few hours. The only reason anything appears to happen is that Cyan programmed it to work that way.


But thats just it, the buttons do do something, when you press them, pellets appear. Its a direct cause-and-effect link -- everytime I set the levels, I get pellets. And my levers directly change the type of pellets I get.

No ones upset about that (as far as I know)

They're upset when they are told that, but it doesn't appear that way. We are told the lake meter directly monitors the lake (and therefore, pellet scores) but when Cyan doesn't update it enough, we notice its not true.

That's when people get angry. Not because the pellets don't control the meter, but because it doesnt appear as though the pellets control the meter.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 4:10 am 
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Tesseract wrote:
Tesseract wrote:
Is the progress of the lake lighting effort (brightness of the lake and progress towards a day/night cycle) directly tied to the sum of all avatars' pellet scores?

greydragon wrote:
Yes.

If that's not a straight answer, I don't know what is.


Um, is that IC? OOC? Does it mean a direct effect or a general effect? A enumerated expression of game mechanics or just Cyan "keeping track" of it?

I mean, that's how the DRC would have answered that question.

I don't exaclty know what, if anything, has been cleared up, since no one really knows/trusts what the true system is anymore now then when we started.

It's an answer that doesn't address the *real* question that we're asking. If that's not obfuscation, I don't know what is.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 6:38 am 
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D'Lanor wrote:
Rusty_Russell wrote:
Quote:
and the GZ progress image was not updating because of a bug.
That's wrong. The image is a manual jpg update. The image didn't update because someone forgot to change it, even during the episode.

Keywords: D'Lanor GZ Until URU.

Yes, it is a manual update but it could still be a bug.

For the record, RAWA was in CC a couple of weeks ago and stated exactly that: the pellets are tracked and the lake will be updated, and the GZ imager would have been updated as well if not for a bug. Because RAWA did not at the time elaborate on the bug, I was hesitant to mention this without having some indication as to how the bug would have affected things, but this strikes me as a very likely answer. It would be nice if this information and the reasons behind it were enumerated publicly, but I think this is the best we're going to get.

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Last edited by Alahmnat on Sat Aug 11, 2007 6:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 1:09 pm 
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The Noble Robot wrote:
Um, is that IC? OOC?

It would make no sense IC for a number to affect the brightness of the lake. Also this is an OOC forum and IC Greydragon has no more knowledge about the lake lighting than we do.

Quote:
Does it mean a direct effect or a general effect?

The question specifically used the word "direct".

Quote:
It's an answer that doesn't address the *real* question that we're asking.

It addressed the real question I was asking. Remind me, then, what the real question we're asking is?


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 1:37 pm 
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No, TNR is right- the question we are really asking- even yourself, really, because it was the meaning behind your question- is whether we are making a difference ourselves or whether events just happen at the point Cyan decides is a good enough time.

That they are tracking pellet scores does not answer that question, because as I have pointed out it is still entirely arbitrarily down to them about what score makes what difference- and hence the timing is under their control, not ours.

The complete lack of feedback or any noticable difference, despite great effort, simply adds to the gathering idea that they are simply holding back and waiting until they think it is the right time to say that we've done enough and institute such change- again, 100% under their control.

If thwre was some kind of feedback it would be something we could then see, analyse and predict future differences. It would, in effect, by Cyan 'committing' to a process, which would then indeed be under explorer control.

So long as no difference is visible, people will find it hard to believe that they have any control at all, and I am afraid Greydragon's answer to what you asked doesn't change that.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 6:04 pm 
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Well, unlike the GZ, it makes no sense (to me) for the algae to suddenly start working. I would expect a phase in, though not necessarily at a constant rate. I would personally expect it to speed up as the algae get healthier.

But i agree, the lack of immediate feedback is frustrating

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2007 12:58 am 
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One of the frustrating things about this is that in all the previous Myst titles, our actions always had a definite effect. It might not have been an obvious effect, but we knew that with every turn of a knob, flip of a switch, whatever, we were causing something to happen somewhere in that Age, and it was up to us to find out what was happening and deal with it.

The lake and GZ meters seem to have introduced a disconnect into the story, and that's too bad. Myst puzzles have always had a definite "cause and effect" aspect to them, and you really lose something when you disregard that trait. In fact, years of experience have led us to expect it. The reward of the games lies largely in the satisfaction of seeing our actions result in something definite. It gives us something to work for. To repeat actions endlessly, hoping for that effect, not seeing it, and then getting vague answers when asking why not, is a bit discouraging.

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2007 8:55 pm 
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i dont know if anyone knows what an ARG is but there is this thing called a puppet master that controls what we get and when we get it. cyan is our puppet master and they control when we get things and what we get. for any of you that disagree with me your just plainly stupid. :)

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 1:11 am 
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That reply was... well... "just plainly stupid" to quote someone.

I didn't realize it was "only your opinion" day! :D Imagine! People DARING to disagree with you! Shocked I am!
8)

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 1:33 am 
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Mark-

No one thinks that Cyan isn't in control of the game. The question is whether the control is arbitary, or whether the illusion of player control is maintained by keeping a relevant cause/effect approach. Its the difference between Cyan deciding, "There's plenty pellets now - shall we light the lake, or wait some more?" and having the game programmed in the background so that every, say, one billion pellet points equals one lighting point, or whatever formula they decide on.

I am well aware that this game isn't real life - the programmers decide what will happen. Maintaining the illusion is what's important - that, and giving the player a level of control by having the ratio of pellet points to light level set within a formula. This way, we have some control (how often we make pellets), albeit within the framework of their programming.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 1:46 am 
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I think enough people have grumbled about wanting to have our actions in the game directly effect the environment that Cyan will probably take it into account with future content.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 3:27 am 
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While I would prefer something automated to reflect pellet progress, I would be satisfied with Cyan, in the background, saying "here are the number targets for the lake lighting, I wonder when the explorers will reach them?"

What we fear is that they're saying "Ok, now in Episode 11, we'll light the lake." That would mean our pelletizing has been wasting a LOT of personal time.

In short, as long as the lake is being lit by predetermined numbers, and not by predetermined dates, I'm happy.


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