The EZA Forum Hall of Greats (May 2022)



  • Two questions for @JDINCINERATOR

    1. Compared to The Elder Scrolls (Oblivion and Skyrim), how open and interactive is The Witcher III's world? I've always heard gushing praise of the game, often namedropping the open world, but every time I've looked at gameplay videos, I've seen a world that looks quite nice, but doesn't feel fully tangible. Like, there's a sense of being of funneled in certain directions, and going off completely randomly instead of following trails and markers resulting in nothing fruitful. Have I somehow been looking at the wrong stuff each time?

    2. How "edgy" are the characters and dialogue? I've heard praise of the narrative elements, but when I've tried watching some, it seems somewhat crass and shallow. Are there notable heavier/mindful plot elements, or is 'edgelordery' its raison d'etre?



  • @oscillator

    1. I think The Witcher 3 is quite open and vast-it's truly a marvel to explore all the cities and village-like areas, it's simply teeming with beauty. As for interaction, I think there is plenty to sink your teeth into and perhaps it's not always by following waypoints and markers where you will find the most fruitfulness. It's the sense the stories told within The Witcher 3 are diverse and built with the surroundings in mind that makes the game so enthralling. You namedropped Oblivion and Skyrim, which are quite limiting and rigid with interactions, whereas The Witcher flows wonderfully, I've seen no static encounters in the game.

    2. There are many stories and characters that give you a wide array of vibes. One character recommends that Geralt wipes his arse before a mission is to be undertaken, and Geralt's deadpan sense of humor offers plenty of unexpected chuckles. I think those who watch gameplay footage as opposed to experiencing it properly, won't find the excellent sense of humor and delicious shreds of sharply-written script so easily.

    Crass and shallow is quite a scathing remark to me, but I understand it would appear wooden at first. I think generally if you sit down and play The Witcher 3, hours and days will go by and the more you will see what the game is truly hiding underneath the surface. Many games of its ilk give you a huge open-world that is straightforward, soulless and checklisty.By comparison spending time with The Witcher 3 is akin to spending time getting to know your new partner-the quirks and idiosyncrasies become more apparent the more you know them.



  • @bruno_saurus

    1. A sports game is an uncanny choice for Hall of Greats-what does Madden 07 do to stand out from all of them?
    • I definitely get this game will likely get banned because of its competition, but also its genre. However! This is one of the most in-depth Madden’s of this era, and probably still today. Sure the graphics are obviously better today, but the amount of things you could do in 22 are dwarfed in comparison to 07. Practices are more actual practices because you aren’t wearing a full NFL gameday uniform to them. You actually are wearing Training Camp like uniforms which just helps the immersion a bit more compared to today. As far as other sports games, The Show, FIFA, NBA 2K, and NHL I am not as versed in compared to Madden. I play them from time-to-time, but not following these series as much as Madden. NCAA Football has also been in a dormant coffin until they announced the return of it last year. I love the additions of Creating a Stadium in The Show, but it can get too complicated and I would much rather download one from the servers.
    • Another reason this specific era of Madden stands out for me is the announce team. You have Al Michaels and the man who the game is named after, JOHN MADDEN. This is one of the last games these two would appear together in the Madden series. In the next-gen version of Madden 09, John Madden would show up as a virtual holographic version of himself helping guide the player with NFL tutorials. But, some players never saw this man because they knew the game too much to care. You see him when you boot up the game or the first time and that’s it.
    1. The last Madden game I played properly was 2003, what advancements have been made since that games release-provided you’ve played 2003 of course?
    • Starting off, in Madden 2004, Owner Mode was introduced! This let you control all the prices for various things like tickets, jerseys, parkings, relocating your team, etc! This also brought in coaching staffs that you can manage each year to help improve your team! 2005 brought in the legendary Hit Stick letting you hit the offense with more ferocity. The Defense was also given more control with pre-snap adjustments you counteract offensive adjustments. 2005 also brought in Storyline Central implementing the Tony Bruno Show, National and Local Newspapers introducing more immersion to the game itself. 2006 introduced the Truck Stick to counteract the Hit Stick from the previous year for more powerful running backs. It also introduced the Superstar Mode for created players and such! 2007 introduced the Highlight Stick to help all Running Backs, not just the bruising Running Backs. It also introduced the Lead Blocking Control to control blockers for your Running Back to find a clear running lane. The implementation of all of these features helps make Madden 07 one of my favorites. For Madden 08, they took away the Tony Bruno show on the PS2, Xbox, and Gamecube versions, and the UI is just cleaner to me in 07 and less flashy.


  • Question for @bruno_saurus:

    In your screenshot for Superstar mode, you have the character's parents and their IQs. What's going on there? Not a complaint or anything, just genuinely curious what that's about and how it ties into the gameplay of the mode.

    • So here you pick your parents and dependent on some of that information, you get recommended a position. If your Dad was a Pro Bowl WR, you would be picked to play that position! Overall, the parental IQ does seem just like a fun nonsensical thing for backstory for your player. I am not entirely sure how much it plays into the actual career as you have to take a 20 question IQ Test before the Draft anyways, but it is another fun addition of depth that isn't really present in today's Career Mode.You just pick one of the four positions offered and that's about all the setup you get.


  • Also, sorry I haven't had the time to actually ask any questions. It's been quite a hectic seven days of work and life on weekends! So please everyone forgive me this one time.



  • Two questions for @bruno_saurus

    1. I have virtually no experience playing Madden, but I did briefly dabble in a couple other football games, around 2005. They came across to me as being obtuse for people who aren't really, really into football. You're offered dozens of plays to select, but can't tell the difference between most of them. And all these teams and players don't feel different in a gameplay sense. With four downs/chances, it feels like you can 'brute force' a positive result by picking the most basic looking plays over and over.

    Are 360-era and newer Madden titles considerably more advanced and polished in gameplay compared to older Madden titles/other football series, as in does play selection/team+roster knowledge/how well you execute a play, make a very clear difference in how well you do, and for newbies, do they help you 'get' how to play well?

    1. Is the draw of Madden more the things surrounding the on-field gameplay, like managing teams? Is experiencing the flavour of a football league more key to a football fan enjoying it than the actual playing of football?


  • Alright everybody, cross-examination is now closed and it is time to DM me your votes. As a reminder, here are the rules you need to follow:

    1. Only those who brought a game can vote.
    2. You must choose your top 3 picks, with your first place game getting three points, second place getting two, and third place getting one.
    3. You may not vote for your own game.

    I encourage you to look back at all of the presentations and questions/responses before you cast your votes. I have updated the aggregation in the original post, as well as the post I made yesterday, in order to help make that easier. I will start to reveal the winners after I have received all of the votes. Also, for the sake of transparency, I think it important to mention that I have already voted in order to avoid being influenced by your votes.

    Thank you all very much for participating, and I'll see you when I have your winners.



  • Alright everybody, I have received all of the votes and it is time to reveal which two games will enter the Hall of Greats. Before I start, I just want to say that we once again have no banned games, which means that every single game got at least one point. Hooray! I think I speak for everyone when I say that all of you did a great job presenting your games.

    Without further ado, here are the games going from least to most points:


    0_1653637775083_Madden_NFL_07_Coverart.png
    #7: Madden 07 -- 2 points

    Submitted by @bruno_saurus
    Presentation


    0_1653637917747_Mass_Effect_Legendary_Edition.jpeg
    #5: Mass Effect Legendary Edition -- 4 points

    Submitted by @Shoulderguy
    Presentation


    0_1653638061727_Halo_-Combat_Evolved(XBox_version_-_box_art).jpg
    #5: Halo: Combat Evolved -- 4 points

    Submitted by @Oscillator
    Presentation


    0_1653638191951_Dragon_Age_Inquisition_BoxArt.jpg
    #4: Dragon Age: Inquisition -- 5 points

    Submitted by @ffff0
    Presentation


    Alright, we have only three games left, two of which will be entered into the Hall of Greats. Our third place game, which narrowly misses entry is:

    0_1653638361070_Uncharted_4_box_artwork.jpg

    #3: Uncharted 4: A Thief's End -- 7 points

    Submitted by @Brannox
    Presentation


    And that means that the two games that will enter the Hall of Greats are:

    0_1653638612846_Witcher_3_cover_art.jpg

    #2: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt -- 9 points

    Submitted by @JDINCINERATOR
    Presentation


    0_1653638731058_Batman_Arkham_Asylum_Videogame_Cover.jpg

    #1: Batman: Arkham Asylum -- 11 points

    Submitted by @capnbobamous
    Presentation


    And there you have it folks, The Hall of Greats for May 2022 is officially over! I would like to thank you all so much for participating. I had a great time and I hope you all did as well. What did you all think? I feel it went smoothly but I am always open to suggestions so let me know. Otherwise, that's it! Feel free to discuss your votes and such. The next HOG is scheduled for September, which will also make one whole year of doing it! Hard to believe that it will have been that long, but I'll see you then.



  • I can't believe Wild Hunt actually got in. Such a competitive row of killer games y'all brought to this Hall of Greats, I didn't think Wild Hunt stood much of a chance. Thank you all who voted and to @Capnbobamous for presenting the Hall of Greats.



  • Wow. While I didn't know what to expect in terms of points total, I didn't think Uncharted 4 would place so high. Which means, once again, NOT BANNED BAYBAY!!!

    But in all serious, this round was a toughie. I felt the cross-examination period rubber-banded a bit, with some activity the moment questioning opened, silence for a long while, then a flurry of questions/answers at the end (I chalk this up to people being busy during the week and only having time to focus on this during the weekend). I also was quite surprised I didn't answer many cross-examinations.

    Regardless, to any of you who chose to vote, if it was only a point, I thank you kindly. Big congrats to both Batman: Arkham Asylum and The Witcher III: Wild Hunt for being recognized as Greats (tm). And as always, if people wanted to share what they voted for and why, I'll do so to by either going back and editing this post or dropping my decisions separately.

    To close, shoutouts to @Capnbobamous for making these and to everyone who participates. These are so fun and I always look forward to them. Can't wait for the next one in three months!!

    EDIT: Since others left their votes below, here's how I went:

    3 Points - Dragon Age: Inquisition. Personally I felt this had the strongest combination of presentation and cross-examination

    2 Points - Batman: Arkham Asylum As much as I love this game, the detective vision's lack of penalty (as appreciating the art design doesn't impede gameplay. Apologies for not wording my cross-examination question better) is my only gripe. And though I may prefer other Arkhams, Asylum is fantastic

    1 point - The Witcher III: Wild Hunt Of the remaining games to vote for (that I could), I feel like this had the strongest remaining case (And I agree with ffff0 about the point regarding the Mass Effect Trilogy. But I do hope all three get in at same point). I still don't foresee myself playing it, but to me, it's undeniable the exceptional quality it has.



  • Good game everyone and congrats to the winners! Those were all great presentations, fortunately I've played all of these games before so that made voting a little easier for me.

    Here's where my votes went:

    1. Halo: Combat Evolved (3pts)
      It's Halo, it's obviously one of the all-time greats. It was an undeniable game changer for the video game industry and the gameplay still holds up.

    2. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End (2pts)
      It's maybe the best action adventure game I've ever played. I replayed Uncharted 4 with the Legacy of Thieves Collection this year and it's even more stunningly beautiful at 60fps.

    3. Dragon Age: Inquisition (1pt)
      I remember this game fondly and I'm disappointed that more RPG's like this one are not being made anymore. Personally, I still prefer Dragon Age: Origins more, that game is more consistently great but Inquisition has many great moments too.

    Thanks to @Capnbobamous for putting this together and thanks to everyone for letting me make my case for Mass Effect: Legendary Edition. I'll try not to create any new rules with my next nomination. :)



  • Here are my votes:

    1. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. I love this game and was thinking about bringing it myself. Great presentation and strong cross-examination left no room for other contenders.
    2. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End. I also love this game, although not as fondly as The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Again, great presentation and strong cross-examination have secured my vote.
    3. Madden 07. #3 and #4 were very close, but I votes for Madden 07, because I got convinced that this was the high point of the series which is something for an annual series.
    4. Batman: Arkham Asylum. I barely remember this game, but I put it so low because of detective mode discussion. I think when player have to chose between making things hard and pretty visuals, it’s a bad game design.
    5. Mass Effect Legendary Edition. I think Mass Effect games are too different to work as a single product, and I wasn’t convinced otherwise.
    6. Halo (Combat Evolved). Presentation had an abrupt ending and I think that levels shouldn’t be fun to play only on the hardest difficulty. A shooter with levels that aren’t fun, is a bad shooter.

    Thanks everyone for your effort, whether I voted for your nominee or not. See you next time.



  • Okay I am actually shocked Madden 07 isn't banned. Thank you allies! I feel honored to not have it banned! This weekend I will honor you all by playing more of it. September, I already have a game planned that isn't a sports game, so don't worry!

    3 Points: Batman Arkham Asylum

    • I love Arkham Asylum so much and I appreciated the combat discussion. Felt the presentation was also explained the gameplay vibes while utilizing stealth to take out enemies.

    2 Points: The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

    • While I have only played a handful of hours of The Witcher, the cross-examination was strong and the presentation was definitely great at explaining why the game as a whole is a Great.

    1 Point: Uncharted 4: A Thief's End

    • Maybe my favorite Uncharted game! This and The Witcher were a toss up for me. Felt the cross-examination was strong as well and helped bring out some of my own thoughts that were answered.

    Thank you all for the dedication your presentations showed. And thanks to @Capnbobamous for setting this all up again!



  • Good presentations everybody. I meant to participate but I missed the deadline. If Bruno brought Madden 2005, I would've been totally in but my experience with the PS3 version of 07 was bad, but I heard the PS2 version was much better than the next gen which was super new at the time.

    I would've voted like so:
    3 pt - Uncharted 4
    2 pt - Batman Arkham
    1 pt - Halo CE



  • I was very surprised that my game got in, and it's a little bittersweet because I didn't have the time to make the presentation I had originally planned, but I'm not gonna look a gift horse in the mouth. Here are my votes:

    3 pt. The Witcher 3. One of my favorite games of all time. Just an absolutely masterful RPG that every other game in the genre will be held to for years to come. Shoutout to JD for a great presentation.

    2 pt. Uncharted 4. Another classic. I still prefer Uncharted 2, but 4 is undeniably great so I was happy to give it points. Certainly has the best combat of the series. Also Brannox delivered a great presentation which made my vote that much easier.

    1 pt. Madden 07. I think this vote comes down to a number of reasons, not least of which is that the game simply looks fun. Love how in-depth it seemed to go in its modes (parent IQ levels, huh????) and when somebody says that an old sports game is the best in the series, I tend to believe them. It's crazy how much charm these old games had when their current day counterparts are so hollow and lifeless. It was a great presentation by Bruno, and I was happy to give it a point.



  • Everybody did a great job choosing games and the presentations were very insightful. Here's my ranking of each presentation:
    1.Batman: Arkham Asylum
    I love Arkham Asylum and it's a game that isn't often seen in the GOTY or best games of all time discussion from my perspective. @Capnbobamous did a sensational job of capturing why Arkham Asylum deserved to be voted for amidst stiff competition.
    2.Mass Effect: Legendary Edition
    Mass Effect is enormous and well loved by many and I felt the presentation reflected this. Few videogame franchise have made the meteoric impact Mass Effect has and I believe it deserved a place in the Hall of Greats.
    3.HALO
    I put aside my indifference for HALO to see the bigger picture and I thought the presentation was enthusiastic enough for me to give it the final point. What HALO did for Xbox and the videogame industry is unparalleled and it deserved recognition.
    4.Dragon Age: Inquisition
    The presentation @ffff0 gave compelled me to download Inquisition and give it a try. I had not been interested in Dragon Age: Inquisition much at all, but I feel now that it could be a very worthwhile experience. I think it's the aspect that I forgot about it and didn't pay it much attention that stopped it getting a point more than anything else.
    5.Madden NFL 07
    I love that @bruno_saurus chose a sports game to bring to the Hall of Greats, but I always feel that sports games bleed together, which is why I didn't give it a point.
    6.Uncharted 4: A Thief's End
    Uncharted 4 is indeed a great game and @Brannox did justice to it in every way, but I can't stop thinking that Uncharted 2 and Uncharted 3 did way more to push the series forward, and I found Uncharted 4 a bit too serious for my liking.



  • I voted:

    3 points - Batman: Arkham Asylum
    2 points - Mass Effect Legendary Edition
    1 point - Dragon Age: Inquisition

    I haven't played any of them - they aren't my style - so I had to go by the presentations and snippets of gameplay footage. Arkham felt the most balanced to me. Compact without feeling short, deep without being complicated, heavy atmosphere, tons of detail, super distinct art style.

    What especially vaulted it above the others in my eyes was that it kicked off a successful series of games, having a solid formula right at the start. The Dragon Age series, on the other hand, took time to get to the best game, and the series has been in a bit of a limbo since it.

    Like Arkham, Mass Effect was also a successful series from the start, and there is something to be said for how the three games tie together. I thought Arkham's atmosphere and gameplay looked a lot tighter, though.

    Voting against The Witcher III was just personal preference. I can't get past the edgy writing.

    As for my own game, it seems what Halo did to the gaming landscape couldn't overcome its repetitive level design. People were barely bothered by that issue back when it was new, though, and I tried to emphasize all the aspects that DID blow people's minds. I hope to bring it again some day, and I think I already have a better angle to take. But it'll be a while.



  • Submitting this for the Community Showcase! Just so we have some stuff for it!



  • @bruno_saurus Excellent! And the schedule says it's time for the Allies to gather again the same day.

    Gonna be a goooooood day.



  • Very good day!!!! I will definitely be ready! Gotta finish off my rewatch of them all. I've been slacking the past few weeks.