1. Welcome to TechPowerUp Forums, Guest! Please check out our forum guidelines for info related to our community.

OFFICIAL Frictional Games - SOMA (Discussion)

Discussion in 'Games' started by RCoon, Oct 8, 2013.

  1. RCoon

    RCoon Gaming Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2012
    Messages:
    11,291 (5.79/day)
    Thanks Received:
    9,382
    Location:
    Gypsyland, UK
    Yes, and weirdly they get more and more persistent the further into the game you get. It actually happened last night twice while recording. The last one I got was when I dropped down out of a vent.

    As for SOMA vs MGSV, I think you enjoy SOMA because it ends sooner. There are games that do length well, like The Witcher, but MGSV takes almost 100 hours to complete. Most of that time is spent in the same map, unlocking bits you've been able to see but not touch for weeks. It gets tiresome. SOMA however keeps you gripped. I cannot stand horror games, and yet I found myself going back to it every day to complete just a little more story until I get terrified again.
     
    NightOfChrist, manofthem and rtwjunkie say thanks.
  2. rtwjunkie

    rtwjunkie PC Gaming Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Messages:
    9,096 (2.74/day)
    Thanks Received:
    12,717
    Location:
    Louisiana -Laissez les bons temps rouler!
    @manofthem I won't be able to check till tonight, but I will run it tonight on my W8.1 to rule out game-related or OS related, since you and RCoon are both using W10.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2015
    NightOfChrist and manofthem say thanks.
  3. Frag Maniac

    Frag Maniac

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2010
    Messages:
    4,949 (2.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,610
    Well I haven't played as far in as some, but certainly into areas that have a lot going on graphically and physically, and most of my performance issues have just been horrible hitching at checkpoints. Typical of UE games though.

    After looking at your spec chart, if you're playing on two 290s in CF, maybe that's causing it. Seems lots of games have issues with CF.

    I worried we were going too OT on other games, but I'll keep it to comparison. For me, SOMA's tedium comes in vague objectives and a lot of wandering samey terrain. Yes, there is that suspense, but more often than not what you're curious about is either nothing, or the expected crouch and hide when you hear the monster cues.

    What I like most in SOMA is what I liked most in Amnesia, the puzzles. They're surprisingly cerebral, which is unusual in the horror genre. OK, a lot of times it's just that they are simple things to do, but without hand holding. It can be good or bad. Good if you notice something like a certain knob is a dial vs button, bad if it takes you a half hour longer than it should. Admittedly though, a lot of that confusion came in my first play through with simple vs normal icons, which I don't recommend on a first play through. It can disrupt the flow and suspense.

    MGSV can seem like a bit of a grind in the sense that the objectives and terrain are a bit samey, plus the disposable suppressor and begin punished score wise for reloading a checkpoint, but it also has plenty minutia. I like how there are MANY collectibles to find and use toward base building, items you can develop, and tasks you can take on within a mission. Plus all the above are retained once you encounter/complete them, so you can build on each mission via restarting it without having to do those parts over. Each restart becomes quicker and quicker, as you can bypass the side collectibles and tasks you've already done.

    This is very similar to the way other stealth games work, Like Hitman, except there with each attempt you're discovering pathways, disguises, stashes, interactions, etc. There's just a wealth of things in this game, so it's hard to get bored. Found out the hard way you can run out of Fultons though, and I'm not sure where to look for how may you start with or how many you can carry. Must have glossed over the load-out screen too quickly. Hopefully it's shown there.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2015
  4. manofthem

    manofthem WCG-TPU Team All-Star!

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Messages:
    10,649 (4.40/day)
    Thanks Received:
    25,777
    Location:
    Florida
    Not sure really. It's not using the second card so I'm assuming CFX doesn't work for the game. However, I was considering disabling it in CCC and try it. I had a similar issues with FC3 where 2 cards was crap but 1 card was great. :confused:

    I'll report back tonight
     
    rtwjunkie says thanks.
    Crunching for Team TPU
  5. Frag Maniac

    Frag Maniac

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2010
    Messages:
    4,949 (2.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,610
    Yeah I would do that. It sounds like what you're experiencing is throttling from a failed CF implementation. Plus it's a game that runs easily just on my one 7970, and a 290 is quite a bit more powerful.
     
  6. manofthem

    manofthem WCG-TPU Team All-Star!

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Messages:
    10,649 (4.40/day)
    Thanks Received:
    25,777
    Location:
    Florida
    It seemed to run better with CFX disabled. I can't say definitively because I don't know if it was because of where I was in game or if it actually made a difference. A little more time will tell, but it's a step in the right direction for now.


    Other than that, the game is still great. It has me constantly looking forward to more. :)
     
    Crunching for Team TPU
  7. AphexDreamer

    AphexDreamer

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    Messages:
    7,324 (1.97/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,001
    Location:
    C:\Program Files (x86)\Aphexdreamer\
    Just beat the game. Really loved it and will give it a second play through eventually. Lots of questions though, which is good.
     
    rtwjunkie and manofthem say thanks.
    10 Year Member at TPU
  8. manofthem

    manofthem WCG-TPU Team All-Star!

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Messages:
    10,649 (4.40/day)
    Thanks Received:
    25,777
    Location:
    Florida
    Game is still epic imo, I'm still loving it. Got to Theta, and now I'm trying to move downward ;)

    The game is scary when it's scary, and I love that. It's a nice departure from Amnesia yet a nice horror and sticky situation. We'll done so far :)
     
    rtwjunkie says thanks.
    Crunching for Team TPU
  9. manofthem

    manofthem WCG-TPU Team All-Star!

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    Messages:
    10,649 (4.40/day)
    Thanks Received:
    25,777
    Location:
    Florida
    Just finished the game and it was fantastic! A roller-coaster of a game with some crazy psychological ups and downs!

    Very good job Frictional Games! :respect:
     
    AphexDreamer, rtwjunkie and RCoon say thanks.
    Crunching for Team TPU
  10. Drone

    Drone

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Messages:
    5,760 (2.26/day)
    Thanks Received:
    6,260
    Meeeeeh, I've encountered infamous omnitool bug. It happens when you leave Climber and head to Tau (if you accidentally swipe the tool twice you can't use it ever again). Totally game-breaking and experience-ruining bug but fortunately game makes autosaves so you can start from Climber again. Another annoying thing: monsters always spawn in "quest places" and hang around there, so much for stealth gameplay. Constant "interference" fx and limited visibility makes it really annoying, slow pace don't help either. After first 100 minutes of gameplay it all turns to Quake 4 + Doom 3 + Dead Space: Extraction + Space Odyssey + Terminator + Matrix thing and I was like "dafuq I'm playing this!?" and just when I was about to uninstall the game .... real fun began!

    It got so immersive that it was totally worth it. Story got maximally interesting as you progress so when you leave 80% of the game behind plot gets totally mind-blowing. SOMA is less scary than Amnesia because it has more philosophical stuff rather than survival horror stuff but it's a great game, just requires some patience.

    Puzzles are interesting and well designed, little back tracking here and there makes it even more cool. Unfortunately devs decided to re-use old ideas (end of the world, mysterious liquid, mutants aka all stuff from machine for pigs) which made it kinda cliché but it's ok.

    Game left so many questions unanswered and it's a great thing. Makes you think what's the point of ARK? Pathos-II people will 'live' there and so what? They'll just interact with each other without progress or science. But then again there's a hope, maybe friendly aliens will find this probe and help "mankind" somehow.

    Was WAU a bad guy? Probably not. I decided to leave and didn't kill it, unfortunately it doesn't affect the ending at all.

    The most memorable and depressive scenes from this game:

    When Simon sees 'himself' in the mirror
    Scene with the last woman on Earth
    Cath's dead body

    and of course this:

    [​IMG]


    Bottom line: strongly recommended game. It's absolutely cool and mind blowing. If it hadn't have that bug I'd say it's 2015 GOTY.
     
    manofthem and rtwjunkie say thanks.
  11. Drone

    Drone

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Messages:
    5,760 (2.26/day)
    Thanks Received:
    6,260
    Yeah yeah I know it's a bump but I've just watched an interesting video about singularity, machine ethics and Asimov's 0th law of robotics and it all screamed "SOMA"



    Now it all sounded so familiar like all those WAU, ARK and Vivarium in SOMA. I guess I'll have to replay SOMA (and even Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs) because these games have a lot of things to think about. On my first playthrough I was focusing on horror elements of these games, but this time I'm gonna pay more attention to the main idea and plot.
     
    manofthem and rtwjunkie say thanks.
  12. Artas1984

    Artas1984

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2009
    Messages:
    496 (0.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    456
    Sorry that i did not find this before. I loved this game so much that i did a trick-stunt exhibition video for it:



    You did not finish it? Why?

    Listen all. I want to say something about the horror factor in video games like in this one. This especially concerns you, Frag Maniac (i know him since 2005 from Dreamcatcher Painkiller forums).

    You say Frag, that Soma was a disappointment to you. I've read all and don't understand your explanations.

    1. The fact that Soma does not feel like a proper horror game is just because Soma has less quantity of horror than in your average horror game. The quality of horror, however, is top notch. I think that people get too high expectations for horror games, because they are used to constant terror, like in Outlast or Amnesia. This does not take away anything from Soma.

    2. Jump scares are not necessarily a bad thing. It's just that a game does not get a great replay-ability value if it's most important horror tribute is jump scares. That being said, Soma is nothing about that! The horror in this game comes from visual and audio atmosphere - you can't see shit and you hear creepy sounds - that's what defines horror in this game.

    3. A true survival horror game is when you are a weakling that has limited offense and defense ability. While i am not a particularly devoted fan of "no gun" games, but still, games like The Evil Within and Resident Evil 4 HAVE GOT NOTHING TO DO WITH SURVIVAL HORROR. The difference between them is that Resident Evil 4 was one of the best adventure games of all times, while The Evil Within was one of the most frustrating and clunky pieces of shit i've ever played, even though i somewhat enjoyed it for the larger part.

    4. You say Frag, that wandering the ocean was extremely monotonous. This is just your personal opinion. I adored walking for hours in the bottom of the ocean, even though this has got nothing to do with horror, it deepens the suspense and atmosphere of the game. There are lots of folks who would agree with me, that from time to time you need a neutral place to relax and explore your suroundings, adore the level design, before continuing to the next action/horror area. I know AndySYS, Shaddy or even Varus from Painkiller forums would 100 % agree on this, that's why we loved Painkiller so much.

    5. You say that Alien Isolation had better atmosphere? Custom opinion! Soma had the BEST atmosphere i ever witnessed in my taste, even though Alien Isolation nailed it pretty good with a few exceptions. You praise Alien Isolation superb AI; while i agree, that's just on the Alien side. You did not seem to care that the bots are way more boring and that there are just too many of them making the game ridiculously prolonged in the wrong way.

    6. Spare me the "more compelling" story BS about Alien Isolation Frag. It does not even come close to Soma. NOT EVEN CLOSE. Silent Hill and Alan Wake can compare to Soma's wonderful story. Alien Isolation was got NOTHING on it. Alien Isolation uses a modified generic movie based story that we all know, there is NOTHING special about it.

    7. You are disappointed in level design of Soma. How can you say that if you don't like wandering the ocean? It has so much more space to walk in some of the ocean parts, that it rivals Serious Sam in level space. The abyss section with the water walk in complete darkness towards Tau station was the best level design i ever saw in any game! It was HORRIFYING! That was the scariest "ambient walk" in the whole game! Bioshock has got NOTHING on Soma when it comes to ocean level design.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  13. Vya Domus

    Vya Domus

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2017
    Messages:
    972 (4.30/day)
    Thanks Received:
    462
    I found SOMA very interesting simply because of the story and what was about. The only thing I kind of found disappointing is that your actions don't have an effect on the story or ending.
     
  14. Artas1984

    Artas1984

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2009
    Messages:
    496 (0.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    456
    True, but hey, the same case was in Bioshock Infinite, remember all that BIRD or CAGE bullshit? That was a HUGE disappointment...
     
    rtwjunkie and Vya Domus say thanks.
  15. Frag Maniac

    Frag Maniac

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2010
    Messages:
    4,949 (2.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,610
    Potato potahto, there are many whom agree with me too. It's mainly because you can easily get lost, and you can also go for long periods without encountering anything hostile. The main reason I call it monotonous is it took me WAY out of the survival horror immersion. I was much more bored and annoyed than in suspense, and certainly not horrified.

    So it's only MY opinion that's "custom"?:wtf: Seems yours is every bit as biased, if not more. I personally thought the Working Joes added a necessary enemy element. Just having the Alien would have been too predictable and repetitious. People blew the Joes out of proportion. The only ones that were near impossible to kill were the ones in chem suits, and it IS possible to sneak past them. In fact it's some of the more challenging and suspenseful sneaking in the game. Since you pretty much define survival horror as defenseless sneaking, I would think you'd have enjoyed those parts more.

    Well, that verifies you're stooping to trying to force your opinions on everyone. Isolation as most know is based primarily on the original Alien movie, which is one of THE most iconic and classic horror movies ever. It also popularized space horror, with many trying to copy it's theme. As made from movie games go, Isolation is one of the best ever, yet here you are reducing it to "BS" status, even after you admitted they "nailed it pretty good". The fact is, Creative Assembly on their first try got right what many fail to even come close to in the survival horror genre. It not only has great suspense and feeling of vulnerability, it gives you distraction tools, a fairly powerful (but not deadly to Aliens) weapon, AND the Alien can adapt to your tactics. And even though the robots aren't as keen (expectedly because they're programmed), they ARE fairly tough to sneak past in many cases.

    As far as stories go, it's not like the elements in SOMA such as brain uploading and saving humanity via a genetic database hasn't been done before. I also hear people insist Silent Hill's Pyramid heads are WAY scarier than The Evil Within's Keepers, yet they are SO slow, predictable, and easy to avoid.

    Again, just your opinion, I likened the dark ocean floor in SOMA to the dark areas in Amnesia when you're a good distance from the monster. It's really only potentially dangerous when you can hear something near, and in those sections of SOMA it was mostly just the ocean, with very few hostiles. I don't know what it is about darkness, but most players lose their nut over it. It's like they forget they have ears too. One of the worst things about Amnesia was it was never completely dark. There was always a faint light around the player that showed you objects and walls when you were near them. Because of that I rarely had to use matches. I had tons of tinder boxes by the end of the game. I was also playing on default gamma, and my CCFL lit ISP display is a pretty dark one.

    I use Amnesia as an example because SOMA tried many of the same tactics, but me, I really don't panic over darkness. There has to be more than a lack of visibility. While the ambient sounds add atmosphere, it's easy to differentiate them from the sounds that cue real threats, so they become less meaningful. SOMA, same as Amnesia, becomes predictable and even boring in many places once you discover it's horror structure. Most of it depends on players being petrified in certain situations, and the worst part is, once you realize most of those situations involve no hostiles, it kills replay value.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  16. Artas1984

    Artas1984

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2009
    Messages:
    496 (0.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    456
    If a movie has a great story, the game that copies it from the movie certainly does not get same high praise for story telling! That's cheap! The best games are those which have their own writing. Speaking of Alien, even though it's one of my all time favorite sci-fi franchises, i would not call the story great; it's actually pretty generic stuff and nothing that blows the mind, and that's not my opinion, it's just a fact, just a simple space monster story. This is not Interstellar level writing you know... Ha ha, good one... It has the other things which made Alien a great movie, definitely not a great story...

    So, we both have our opinions, i think we settled this without the need to go further.
     
  17. Frag Maniac

    Frag Maniac

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2010
    Messages:
    4,949 (2.00/day)
    Thanks Received:
    1,610
    Really getting sick of you forcing the idea that your opinions are facts, and those of others aren't.
    Really, with what you just said above? There's really no "we" here, just you rambling on listening to no one but yourself.

    I'd say it's definitely come to a pointless standoff though, it's the only realistic way to describe it.
     
  18. Artas1984

    Artas1984

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2009
    Messages:
    496 (0.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    456
    You began rambling about this game in this thread before me. I came here to defend the game and provide some valid points, perhaps change your mind a bit about understanding the game, but you are as stubborn as always used to be.
     
  19. Vayra86

    Vayra86

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2014
    Messages:
    2,648 (2.47/day)
    Thanks Received:
    2,200
    Location:
    Duiven, Netherlands
    Well I can see where both of you are coming from to be honest. For me, I didn't finish the game because the pace was too slow, as much as I found the first couple of hours engaging, it quickly wore off for me. Yes, the horror elements in the game are very nicely done, the atmosphere is brilliant, the narrative is nice. But still, you compare it to Silent Hill, I'd say Silent Hill is MILES ahead of SOMA in every single way. It has much more combat while still giving you the sense of being defenseless and Silent Hills' gameplay elements are so much richer, there is actual depth in it; inventory management, what to hoard and what to use, and even the use of every specific item and how it affects your surroundings. I mean, from using a flashlight, to listening to the radio, everything was useful, but also carried a huge drawback. No matter what choice you made, you were f*cked anyway. That and the brilliantly written dialogue and backstory really do make the game IMO.

    The sense of desperation mixed with weirdness is spot on in SH, and the way it is tied to historical events, cults and religion drive it home. Another thing SH mastered was the environment. SOMA is a dark mess, SH gave you bright areas that STILL scared the shit out of you. One moment you look in a mirror and it all looks normal; the next, you turn around and the walls are fluid and you're staring at a bloodied image of yourself. Add in superb audio fx and music and it was just utterly horrifying while NOT being a 'jump scare'. Finding a wheelchair on its side with one wheel still spinning; a pool of blood under it, then turning round the corner and hearing something heavy fall down an elevator shaft - those are the examples that make SH so awesome. And lets not forget the utterly twisted art direction either.

    SOMA has none of that, it quickly started feeling like a walking simulator more than anything else with some (rather odd, not very immersive) puzzling, and an upgrade system tacked on for good measure. Add in the tedious ocean walking; which you find relaxing, but for me really destroyed the pace of the game because you feel like you're missing stuff as the rest of the game is very linear and the ocean parts seem like they're not. But in reality there is nothing to discover, or barely anything. Again, compare to SH: a semi-linear but explorable world that is absolutely loaded with secrets.

    But above all, its a matter of taste. RE and Outlast, not my type of horror game either. The classic Zombie scenery, I won't ever touch it, boring as hell, super cheap, cliché all over. I really liked the originality of SOMA but it fell short on the gameplay for me. It kinda feels like SOMA drags on trying to stay relevant just because of its setting.

    Just remember another extremely cool surv horror game I played; Forbidden Siren. That was just torture. But in a good way ;)
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2017
  20. Artas1984

    Artas1984

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2009
    Messages:
    496 (0.16/day)
    Thanks Received:
    456
    Agreed here, but let me correct some things here..

    Silent Hill is for sure a head of gameplay and horror, but it sounds even like an insult saying "in every way" ahead, when you clearly should understand how great the story telling and world building in Soma is! Both games are equally very good in atmosphere, it's just that Soma lacks more elements for a complete rounded-up horror game.
     

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guest)