: Mirror's Edge 2's Focus On Combat Is A Mistake

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Mirror's Edge 2's Focus On Combat Is A Mistake

I'm sure I'm in the minority on this issue, but I really don't care.

During a recent Eurogamer interview, DICE CEO Karl-Magnus Troedsson said they want to make the next Mirror's Edge "more fun and less irritating."

He added that they're "focusing on first-person combat this time around," so basically, what he's saying is they want to infuse a generic concept into a game that was incredibly innovative to begin with. Great. Yes, I know the focus on combat makes it more "accessible," as Troedsson put it, and I know that you apparently can't sell a first-person game unless you're shooting something, but the original Mirror's Edge was great raw material. To me, it proved you could make a linear, puzzle-oriented first-person adventure that would not only feel fresh, but it would test our minds and fingers in totally different ways.

There was combat in the first title, too, but it wasn't the focus. And I liked it that way. Trying to figure out the best way to scale a particularly tricky structure, and moving quickly and strategically to avoid a hail of bullets was unique. It's what made the entire experience feel original. It's why to this day, I remember that game very well. DICE was able to produce a game that somehow managed to take the standard first-person perspective and twist it. It didn't move or control exactly like any other first-person game I'd played, and I loved the emphasis on the parkour free-running mechanic.

It's what made you stand out. It's why the fans have so patiently waited for news of a sequel. But now it appears that what those fans will get isn't really what they wanted. Does every major release have to follow a formula these days? Seriously?

6/20/2014 Ben Dutka

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Comments (23 posts)

LimitedVertigo
Friday, June 20, 2014 @ 10:11:25 PM
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Everything is for the masses now. Just look at what happened to our beloved JRPGs. The trend continues...

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WorldEndsWithMe
Friday, June 20, 2014 @ 11:00:55 PM
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They were told they could make the game if it catered to a bigger audience and then poof, all the artistry and originality goes out the window.

It'll probably still be a good game though.

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LimitedVertigo
Friday, June 20, 2014 @ 11:32:47 PM

Update the pic, bro

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WorldEndsWithMe
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 1:22:21 PM

gimme time

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SHADOW [Moderator]
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 12:27:12 AM
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Did you even read that article? Not once did he mention shooting things. Not once did he say they were moving away from the parkour traversal stuff (in fact they say exactly the opposite). If you watch the video combat scenario it's pretty clear they're creating traversal-based first person combat puzzles. "Wall run -> knee to the face -> keep moving toward a ledge -> jump -> roll -> kick to the knee -> etc". The entire idea seems to be about maintaining momentum and moving around. And when you do get stood up, you get in close quickly block attacks, and then viciously counter. None of this is standard boiler plate stuff.

Last edited by SHADOW on 6/21/2014 2:35:49 AM

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Mounce
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 1:18:00 AM

I'd think that they meant they're focusing more on the diversity and capability of fighting soldiers you run into. Like, in the original you didn't have many moves, disarm, punch, kick them out and some move-variations. Saying they'd focus more on combat likely is for more diversity rather than the......what I'd call of this article or opinion-piece, is a Slippery-slope, conclusion-hopping/seguing problem. Stating Combat somehow concludes that is instantly becomes generic? Who says.

"It has focus on combat" - So, who's fault is it that the first thing to pop in your head is Call of Duty-action or something? Ben - these rants are a bit unhealthy, I've been seeing more of these than I remember years ago. Combat was there, but just because they said they'll focus on it doesn't mean of anything. They have the engine down, the parkour down, the visuals down, story and voice acting probably can easily be down. So, what do they need to tackle to make it greater than the original and not just a rehash with nothing new? More diverse combat for if you want to, or have to disarm and attack foes - Taijutsu perhaps, some Judo? Aikido? EA's in a position where if they do Nothing new, people will whine. If they do something risky, they get whiners, if they rehash the gameplay mechanics with no new moves? people will whine. They need to ENHANCE SOMETHING and adding more parkour moves can only diversify as much as the level design enables the character via situational puzzles.

I welcome their attempt to focus on things that clearly needed to be ironed out and refined better. Just as Mass Effect 2 needed more refining in the Action department to make it better in my eyes, it was clunky and flawed and they made it better.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 10:37:58 AM

Did you even bother to read MY article? Guess not.

Never once did I say we'd be shooting things. I said it's hard to sell a first-person game unless you're shooting things but I was merely referring to the standards for the first-person view. It's a more action-oriented approach, with a bigger emphasis on combat, and a LESSER emphasis on puzzles. That's a fact.

Mounce: Good to see you only showing up to bash me, as usual. And saying "just because they said they'll focus on it doesn't mean anything" is just...beyond retarded. Read that sentence of your again; there's zero logic to it.

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SHADOW [Moderator]
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 7:06:21 PM

Re-reading it, I unfairly focused on your shooter comment. For that I apologize.

But I still think the entire thesis here is severely flawed. You seem to be treating them "focusing on combat" as a way to "make the game accessible". The impression that I get from them is that they are "focusing on combat" as a way of making the combat itself more accessible. You said it yourself Dice kinda nailed the traversal part last time. The game fell apart when it needed to have Faith deal with conflict. At some point they just had her pick up a gun and the ending of that game suffered greatly for it.

Now they are bringing some of the central ideas of the "good part" of Mirror's Edge and applying them to conflict and combat. Turn a combat scenario into a traversal puzzle. Buck the Arkham-style trend of "hide and wait for a stealth take-down opportunity" and make Faith the aggressor, make her the action rather than the reaction. If they can pull that off it could be incredible, and Dice's attempt to pull it off should be celebrated not criticized.

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Big_Boss90
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 4:02:03 AM
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I agree maybe there are just adding new moves to make the combat more fun..either way it will still be a amazing game, to go and say its gonna be generic because they want to improve on the combat is just ignorance at best.. anyways improvements are always welcome in my book.

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Big_Boss90
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 4:12:01 AM
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I must be the only gamer that welcomes change, so many gamers just want the same game year after year with no improvements what so ever. Oh well iam glad i go into things with a open mind help me enjoy so many great games...

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Beamboom
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 5:35:18 AM
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I'm one of those who found the first one too tricky, and tricky for the wrong reasons. Like trying over and over to hit that tiny spot that you *wanted* to grab but just couldn't cause everything up to that point had to be performed perfect too.

But they should still focus on parkour and acrobatics, just make the movement more fluid (forgiving). I would not mind if there never was a gun to be held ever.

However, if the combat is melee-focused with moves that blend in with the other acrobatics it *could* be cool. It's not like it is insta-generic the moment there is combat involved.

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Vivi_Gamer
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 6:05:15 AM
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What... I don't get it. The reason the combat didn't work in the first game is because it broke the games pacing.... I don't think it need to be fixed, but removed.

Well, I think they should at least remove shooting. Melee combat actually makes sense. But I don't want there to be sections in Mirrors Edge 2 where you have to use combat to progress with the game. If they happens then the whole premise of the game is broken.

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Snaaaake
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 8:50:00 AM
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Let's not judge too quickly, maybe because the combat in the first game was a bit lackluster so they're focusing on improving it?
There's not much problem with the parkour so why focus on that?
Besides, if they really wanna sell an FPS, they would have made Bad Company 3 instead of this.

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Amnesiac
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 2:40:38 PM
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I liked the original emphasis on evasion above combat. There are instances where you have no other choice but to use a weapon, and I felt that aspect could be improved. I am looking forward this sequel and if the addition of an improved hand to hand combat system helps it have more of a mass appeal, I'm all for it.

As long as you still have a choice to flee or fight, it will be a Mirror's Edge game.

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I007spectre
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 3:55:15 PM
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Still after all these years I dont understand all the love Mirrors Edge has gotten. The game started good, but the second adversaries showed up I hated it. Now if the game had stayed just first person exploration I may have enjoyed the whole game.

Last edited by I007spectre on 6/21/2014 3:55:24 PM

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shaytoon
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 7:13:22 PM
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this game is going to suck. just like the first one.

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PC_Max
Saturday, June 21, 2014 @ 7:58:54 PM
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Ben I agree with you completely. Things is... we will have to wait and see. If its drastically different from the first, being that I think this one is a ... geez... a prequel? that it will not make sense moving from one to the other if one is to look at in that way.

I loved the fact they were planning a second game, was not thrilled with the new look, was not thrilled that it might/would be a prequel and unsure what I thought about an open world which could work if done correctly with the same feel and look of the first.

Again... we will have to wait and see. In the end, its about money to these guys to pay the dev bills so its ultimately their call, and ultimately up to us gamers whether we buy it and like it.... maybe not necessarily in that order.

Cheers!

Keep playing!

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ProfPlayStation
Sunday, June 22, 2014 @ 12:55:37 AM
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Eh, it seems like you may have "focused" on one sentence out of context, Ben. He never said that first-person combat was the "focus of the game." He said that they were focusing on getting the combat right so that it isn't frustrating. As one of the biggest Mirror's Edge fans you'll ever meet (I've got several top times on the scoreboards), I admit that the combat in the first game was rather clunky.

In other interviews, like the E3 2014 footage, they've said that in combat situations Faith will hit quick and move on--that it is not *about* combat. The game is still all about movement and free running. I'm not worried.

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Beamboom
Sunday, June 22, 2014 @ 2:34:05 PM

I believe the quote he refers to is this:

"As was mentioned in the movie, we're focusing on first-person combat this time around, to make sure we bring that experience into something that is really fun and accessible."

Still, I'm optimistic like you. Everything else we've heard so far indicates they'll stick to the parkour experience.

Last edited by Beamboom on 6/22/2014 2:34:54 PM

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LegendaryWolfeh
Sunday, June 22, 2014 @ 7:30:27 PM
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Isn't the title technically just Mirror's Edge, not mirror's edge 2? Thought from what I read they were just rebooting it, not doing a sequel.

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LimitedVertigo
Sunday, June 22, 2014 @ 10:15:58 PM

Dude, where have you been?!

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LegendaryWolfeh
Monday, June 23, 2014 @ 8:15:28 AM

Places :^) Pretty sure you see I'm playing Marvel Heroes on steam quite a bit. lol

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Edito
Monday, June 23, 2014 @ 8:54:33 AM
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It is a big mistake, The Original Mirrors Edge was such a atmospheric game, you could feel the environment, the music was the perfect thing for me it just made evertything work together... if they miss that particular point of this game i will be sad...

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