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 Deus Ex 3  Director: Getting Team Support For Player Choice Can Be Challenging
Deus Ex 3 Director: Getting Team Support For Player Choice Can Be Challenging
July 26, 2010 | By Staff

July 26, 2010 | By Staff
More: Console/PC

In Gamasutra's latest feature interview, Deus Ex: Human Revolution director Jean-Francois Dugas says that getting support from team members at Eidos Montreal was more challenging given the game's player agency.

Says Dugas, "You're used to thinking that every single bit that you build, players need to see, because it's so expensive to be making a game. I will spend three months on something, but if a player doesn't see it -- 'Oh my God, we cannot do that. We can't afford this.'"

However, with Deus Ex, player agency is prioritized -- leading to potential situations where that content might be skipped altogether -- and that was hard for the team to initially accept, he says.

"Deus Ex is all about the things you might miss," Dugas says. "At first, to be honest, it was hard to convince the team and say, 'Yeah, you're building this,' because they'd say, 'Yeah, but the player might not see it.'"

"It's not about that," he stresses. "What it's about is the consequence of choice, letting them play the fantasy the way they want, letting them explore the maps and find creative ways to achieve their objectives. This is the heart of the experience."

However, it worked out in the end -- once the team fully understood the game's aims. "At some point, everybody got on board with it, but at first it was tough to get all the people on properly, because they are not used to making that kind of game," he says.

The full interview, which contains more detail about Deus Ex: Human Revolution, including what Dugas and producer David Anfossi think about the previous two games in the series, is live now on Gamasutra.

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jean-francois Dugas
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I think just knowing you're missing something the first time, will force player to re play the game to seek the missing parts. A lot of game forced the player to see everything, without knowing they lost replayability by doing so.

Anthony Hart-Jones
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I know that feeling. I have been there, creating dialogue that players might never see because they might choose one path over another, might skip the text even if they choose the correct path.

I agree that the trick is to make sure that the player knows there was a second option, so that they know that they can see it by playing a second time. The other half, of course, is making sure that they enjoyed the first run-through enough that a second play excites them. I know that the original Deus Ex was like that; you could complete a mission and then see that there was an open window or hidden door that you missed.

On the other hand, the original Mass Effect was a game where I saw all of the choices, the decision points that I had missed, but just didn't feel like there was enough new content on the second play-through.

David Cogan
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Sounding good so far. I'm glad that they seem to be taking into account what made the first game so good.