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Do you think using B7R 3 times was a cheap narrative device?


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#1
Watch

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Here's the mission list to the game:

 

http://acecombat.wik...Ace_Combat_Zero

 

You fight in three missions in B7R:

 

#3 The Round Table

#10 Mayhem

#16 The Demon of the Round Table

 

It seems obvious that these are meant to mark the three acts of the story since they are each about 6-7 missions apart and provide occasions for your guy to become yet another demon-pilot (how original). And to be honest it seems like a cop-out in terms of story-telling difficulty because it's the same map with some minor adjustments, the repetition of it got tedious for me because there was nothing interesting about the desolate mountainous map whatsoever apart from the fact that the coastline is rounded like the round-table, get it? I do, because IT'S SO DAMN OBVIOUS!

 

 

I mean there were so many other ways they could have gone with this, but instead of a palette swapped sprite like in the old days, we get a palette swapped map and a stilted way to divide up the storyline. I mean come on, this game had WAAAY better dialogue than 5 but it just seems lazy to use the same place (which despite all the damn hype made over it in the briefings and cutscenes I still don't get a lesser fuck about because the map is just boring and is just another bird-cage for nothing but Air to Air combat...huhuhuhuh I made a reference thar :P). I got so sick of everyone talking about how big of a deal this place is and being stuck in a bunch of lack-luster dogfights that were just lengthy and tedious. If anything, the boss-fight in Zero was way  better and to be honest, B7R just seems like an appendage to the story that could have happened anywhere else the writers chose. But I suppose they were all gung-ho about the whole European folklore is cool! Let's make ALL the King Arthur references >3>!!! and just HAD to make an allusion to the round table being a big deal.

 

I don't know... I just thought it was annoying how much all the characters cared about a landmass that really was boring to look at, contributed nothing to the game play (Idk do YOU remember any sams or aa guns because I don't...), and was a redundancy that weakened the dramatic progression and the subtlety of the story's character arcs.

 

Sheesh!

 

TL;DR:

 

 

Squidward = Me

Spongebob = ACZ Characters

Rock = B7R


Edited by Watch, 08 May 2013 - 03:41 PM.


#2
Broth3r

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Well, the squadron thread didn't quite explode like I predicted.

 

This, however? Oh boy, the sacrilege.



#3
Watch

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Well, the squadron thread didn't quite explode like I predicted.

 

This, however? Oh boy, the sacrilege.

 

Hey I liked ACZ a lot, it's a great game, but this is like the one thing that bugged me about it to tell ya the truth.



#4
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B7R possessed a rich quantity of natural resources, the same resources that sparked Belka's invasion into the rest of the continent.  B7R's climate, from what I remember, was quite arid, and Schnee 1 makes comments about there being zero viable landmarks in the area.  This would make the logistics of a ground campaign in the area near impossible.  As such, Belka used its air force to secure the area.  The air force was probably used for more than just combat, as well.  The BAF was most likely used as a way to survey the area, looking for potential landmarks and mapping of the area so that the eventual expedition into B7R would be well informed of their surroundings.  After that, the mining for the precious resources would have started.

 

The Allied Powers most likely realized this as well, but they were in the same situation that Belka was in.  Logistics for any ground operation would be difficult on their end as well, so they had no choice but to send in their own air power as well.  Notice how quickly Belka responded to Allied sorties in the area, they needed to retain air dominance over the area until they had the forces to begin the survey for the Ustian resources.  It's why the distraction run by Cipher and Pixy in mission three worked so well.  And when Osea finally manned up in operation Battle-axe, the fight intensified.  

 

B7R presents itself not only as a stage for the aces of the Belkan War, but as a plot device to show the absolute desperation of Belka.  They are pulling out all the stops to keep their nation alive, and B7R is a crucial point in their strategy.  Its why the BAF assigned ace squadrons to the area. 

 

Now AWWNB was a lazy plot device, I mean OMGTERRERISTSGONAUNFIYTHEWRLD.  The third encounter in B7R does seem lazy to me, the final ace squadron encounter could have easily been placed in an area outside of Avalon, and would have added more urgency to the plot.  

 

tl;dr: B7R was a crucial point in the Belkan war strategy, it possessed the natural resources it so desperately needed to survive.  Its a prefect plot device to show Belka's final hours as a would power.  And the 'Knights of the Round Table' arc fits in nicely.

 

So in my case, the first two encounters in B7R are great and the third seems lazy.



#5
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B7R possessed a rich quantity of natural resources, the same resources that sparked Belka's invasion into the rest of the continent.  B7R's climate, from what I remember, was quite arid, and Schnee 1 makes comments about there being zero viable landmarks in the area.  This would make the logistics of a ground campaign in the area near impossible.  As such, Belka used its air force to secure the area.  The air force was probably used for more than just combat, as well.  The BAF was most likely used as a way to survey the area, looking for potential landmarks and mapping of the area so that the eventual expedition into B7R would be well informed of their surroundings.  After that, the mining for the precious resources would have started.

 

The Allied Powers most likely realized this as well, but they were in the same situation that Belka was in.  Logistics for any ground operation would be difficult on their end as well, so they had no choice but to send in their own air power as well.  Notice how quickly Belka responded to Allied sorties in the area, they needed to retain air dominance over the area until they had the forces to begin the survey for the Ustian resources.  It's why the distraction run by Cipher and Pixy in mission three worked so well.  And when Osea finally manned up in operation Battle-axe, the fight intensified.  

 

B7R presents itself not only as a stage for the aces of the Belkan War, but as a plot device to show the absolute desperation of Belka.  They are pulling out all the stops to keep their nation alive, and B7R is a crucial point in their strategy.  Its why the BAF assigned ace squadrons to the area. 

 

Now AWWNB was a lazy plot device, I mean OMGTERRERISTSGONAUNFIYTHEWRLD.  The third encounter in B7R does seem lazy to me, the final ace squadron encounter could have easily been placed in an area outside of Avalon, and would have added more urgency to the plot.  

 

tl;dr: B7R was a crucial point in the Belkan war strategy, it possessed the natural resources it so desperately needed to survive.  Its a prefect plot device to show Belka's final hours as a would power.  And the 'Knights of the Round Table' arc fits in nicely.

 

So in my case, the first two encounters in B7R are great and the third seems lazy.

 

Your points are well taken and I suppose if you take the story by itself it makes sense but this narrative is told through an interactive game and as such the medium is slightly different from say a book or a graphic novel or even an anime.

 

I can concede that fighting over territory containing critical caches of commodities is a viable occasion for a battle. BUT let's not forget that this is a game, and in terms of gameplay it's just another rat's nest for almost nothing but air-to-air combat. I mean as writers they could have written anything else as the round-table but as story-tellers they decided on a land-grab of mineral rich territory (similar to dune) to be the fulcrum of the story's structure. I wouldn't care if I didn't have to keep coming back to the same map with almost no differences each time. As a gamer it annoys me, because the rest of the game is diverse and interesting but B7R is not and it just seems to clash thematically for me what with the terrorist groups, the nukes, the obligatory super-weapon in every game, and so on. I mean it just seems too...ordinary and mundane compared to everything else. And as we all know, Ace Combat is far from an accurate flight sim, so it just seems odd to make a trilogy of missions that are more like a war-sim than the rest of the missions with the tedium and repetition that may occur in a border struggle over vital land to a nation's war effort.

 

TL;DR:

 

Yes it makes for a better war-narrative, but I still feel like it clashes with the rest of the story and doesn't really mesh with the other missions except for the name of the place (which seems like a cheap tactic to tie it in with the knights of the round table theme the game has going). It just could have been more interesting and not just AA mission after AA mission. Just a little diversity in mission design would have been nice even if it makes sense to keep coming back to the same place, it's all I'm saying.


Edited by Watch, 08 May 2013 - 04:21 PM.


#6
Raptorguy

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In a way, yes and no. Its been a couple years since I played ACZ, but from what I remember it felt like the story was rushed and B7R had very little actual purpose in the game. None of the B7R levels were memoriable like they were supposed to be, and I just felt like it was a filler rather than something that anchored the game (like Stonehenge in 04). You only fought in B7R because the game kind of just "put" me there, and if they only left that entire part out I doubt it would've made much of a difference. It was a good try, but like many of Zero's elements I feel like it fell short of its intended purpose.



#7
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In a way, yes and no. Its been a couple years since I played ACZ, but from what I remember it felt like the story was rushed and B7R had very little actual purpose in the game. None of the B7R levels were memoriable like they were supposed to be, and I just felt like it was a filler rather than something that anchored the game (like Stonehenge in 04). You only fought in B7R because the game kind of just "put" me there, and if they only left that entire part out I doubt it would've made much of a difference. It was a good try, but like many of Zero's elements I feel like it fell short of its intended purpose.

 

I agree with you, especially on the whole point of "You only fought in B7R because the game kind of just 'put' you there..." even if the battle seemed necessary to the war, it didn't feel interesting and I wouldn't have missed it either if they had cut it all out.



#8
AceWombat

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Using B7R for a full 1/6 of the missions was quite lazy, but saved the developers a bit of money and time.

 

Probably the same reason why several maps from AC5 were re-used (not without modifications, of course).



#9
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Using B7R for a full 1/6 of the missions was quite lazy, but saved the developers a bit of money and time.

 

Probably the same reason why several maps from AC5 were re-used (not without modifications, of course).

 

See that's what I was thinking. It would save a ton of money to just recycle a map than to make a new one don't you think so?



#10
Broth3r

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It's worth mentioning that being a flight game where terrain is rarely a consideration, the maps are secondary concerns. They can affect gameplay, such as in canyon or high mountain (Selumna) missions, or the presence or absence of water for naval units, but these considerations only affect a fraction of any AC's misions. You could take a couple of hills next to a bay, add an ungodly amount of enemies around it (and a haxing ace for good measure) and call it Gracemeria, and it'd play exactly the same as the original.

 

Of course, this is not done because aesthetics and story do matter - they're a big part of a game's immersion. That said, you'd be hard-pressed to say the mystique surrounding B7R, as cheesy as it may be, doesn't provide said immersion. 



#11
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Of course, this is not done because aesthetics and story do matter - they're a big part of a game's immersion. That said, you'd be hard-pressed to say the mystique surrounding B7R, as cheesy as it may be, doesn't provide said immersion. 

 

Pretty much this.  For how cheesy it can be, B7R gives off that atmosphere of a proving ground for great aces, badasses, and the like.



#12
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B7R possessed a rich quantity of natural resources, the same resources that sparked Belka's invasion into the rest of the continent.  B7R's climate, from what I remember, was quite arid, and Schnee 1 makes comments about there being zero viable landmarks in the area.  This would make the logistics of a ground campaign in the area near impossible.  As such, Belka used its air force to secure the area.  The air force was probably used for more than just combat, as well.  The BAF was most likely used as a way to survey the area, looking for potential landmarks and mapping of the area so that the eventual expedition into B7R would be well informed of their surroundings.  After that, the mining for the precious resources would have started.

 

The Allied Powers most likely realized this as well, but they were in the same situation that Belka was in.  Logistics for any ground operation would be difficult on their end as well, so they had no choice but to send in their own air power as well.  Notice how quickly Belka responded to Allied sorties in the area, they needed to retain air dominance over the area until they had the forces to begin the survey for the Ustian resources.  It's why the distraction run by Cipher and Pixy in mission three worked so well.  And when Osea finally manned up in operation Battle-axe, the fight intensified.  

 

B7R presents itself not only as a stage for the aces of the Belkan War, but as a plot device to show the absolute desperation of Belka.  They are pulling out all the stops to keep their nation alive, and B7R is a crucial point in their strategy.  Its why the BAF assigned ace squadrons to the area. 

 

Now AWWNB was a lazy plot device, I mean OMGTERRERISTSGONAUNFIYTHEWRLD.  The third encounter in B7R does seem lazy to me, the final ace squadron encounter could have easily been placed in an area outside of Avalon, and would have added more urgency to the plot.  

 

tl;dr: B7R was a crucial point in the Belkan war strategy, it possessed the natural resources it so desperately needed to survive.  Its a prefect plot device to show Belka's final hours as a would power.  And the 'Knights of the Round Table' arc fits in nicely.

 

So in my case, the first two encounters in B7R are great and the third seems lazy.

 

The third B7R engagement could've been justified from a plot standpoint if they had framed it as "oh shit AWWNB put lodseAAA everywhere else but none in B7R because they can't support them logistically there". The idea of B7R being the fastest route to Avalon Dam isn't bad either but they failed to play that up too.


Edited by ValkyrieRaptor, 09 May 2013 - 07:46 PM.


#13
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Honestly I didn't care for these being the main reasons

 

One it's the cause of the war so if it's not featured a lot then what the going on?

Two it goes with the whole Arthurian theme we got going of equality and AC Air Combat

Three according to the cutscenes and dialogue it's HUGE so not seeing as much as we did makes them seem a little like liars

Four the story was short, so really that was disappointment enough, I mean 18 missions worked for 04 but 25+ in 5 and the prequel being what it was, well I just wished it was used 3 times just with more missions in between, build up baby, that's what any good epic war needs

 

There are a few others but really that's what pops off the top of my head when I think about it, and why I didn't mind it.

I mean it did it's job and was well setup in the trailers enough I guess so it worked for me. 



#14
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I didn't mind the Round Table at all. The only thing I take issue with is the hype that surrounded it. Kind of a letdown for what was supposed to be the most decisive arena of the war.

I'll be damned if I didn't enjoy the music for each instance, though. Dat THE ROUND TABLE...

#15
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I liked all the epicness that surrounded the round table. I thought it was pretty cool to have a stage for massive air battles to take place. 

 

HOnestly I was more pleased with seeing Stier Castle from AC5 in ACZ. 



#16
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I liked B7R. It was pretty cool and fighting in it felt fun.



#17
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I didn't mind it. It was important in conveying the game's ties to Arthurian legend, and the missions in B7R were some of my favorites.