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Do modders prefer sword&sorcery over sci-fi?

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If I were to guess it's probably because swords & sorcery is a lot more fantasy than science fiction. It's really an "anything goes" scenario, compared to Sci-fi which usually feels confined to the scientific rules and meta naturally involved with it.

 

From my perspective, a lot of Sci-Fi is just as fantastical, if not more so, due to authors who use the excuse of "futuristic technology!" to justify seemingly outrageous elements

 

Because medieval fantasy is supposed to resemble our world, writers of that genre tend to put more effort into explaining the existence of otherworldly elements such as magic in order to make it more relateable.

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I think it is purely a case of what that individual modder likes.  Some like guns, some like swords.............hell, some like freaking both at the same time.   ;)

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I agree, but that also might just be be because of how enormous the Skyrim modding community has been & will continue to be (with the addition of SE) because from what I hear it is incredibly easy to mod due to the lack of restrictions, unlike games such as Fallout 4 & Mass Effect 3.

 

So it definitley depends on how much freedom a modder has to mod a game & how popular said games actually are.

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I suspect part of the problem lies with the game itself. in FNV, you had all the quest mods and new places- Because you only need to have voiced NPCs, in FO4, you have to deal with they had a voiced PC so, it becomes that much more fun digging through all of nate and nora voice files to find appropriate responses which reduces the options.  Then there is the difficulty in adding new lands- almost all the new land mods involve editing the ini files, somthing many new modders are hesitant to do at best.

 

A FO game would get popular if they had made it as open to mod as skyrim.

 

Doesn't matter much in the end- I am happier with FNV, anyway than FO4.

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Shit...just put laser guns and robots and what not in a fantasy setting...problem solved...or hopefully someone would 3dfy the Shadowrun games which combines both aspects...it all falls down on the modders preference and mostly by what the people would like to see more... I think SCI-FI is an easy world devoid of any real dangers that tap into the primordial fears of mankind unlike the fantasy genre does...if there's an unknown entity that eats worlds in a sci-fi work, with the power of science and a well placed blaster shot or nuke inside the alien mothership it will all be sorted out in a jiffy...in a high fantasy setting though, the fear of seeing a demon from an ancient tomb materialize before the adventurer is palpable as well as it is fantastic...I can still have chills when reading  Robert E. Howards' The Black Colossus starring Conan as the protagonist...

 

 

plus fantasy settings is sexually rampant and diverse, what with slavery, secret rituals and other taboo being prevalent in a fantasy world, with magic in the mix...the sex in sci-fi worlds are kinda...clean and unsexy IMHO...methodical like a sex android...(LoL coming from someone who strongly advocates sex robots IRL)

 

Or I am just biased towards hot elven women...

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first off I wanna say, great topic... I've always been a fan of games movies and books that are mostly Sci-fi or Fantasy with hints of magic or Tech, or even Magical tech thrown in, I guess that's kind of why I love the game Morrowind so much because It has the Ruins of the Dwemer that look out of place in the magical setting. and I've always been a fan of the Stars books movies, and games where Sci-fi and Fantasy are woven together in a fantastic setting...

 

 

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I am completely setting agnostic. T

The only caveat is that Fantasy / Swords and Sorcery settings lend themselves to much more creative / sexual / interesting costumes / fetishes.

Hard to compete with a setting where Magic can be used to explain away anything.

Oh, I don't know. Psionics, nanotech, pheromones, gene therapy, brainwashing, clones ... there's not a hell of a lot that you can do with magic that you can't easily justify in an S/F setting. And some of the more overtly technological things are quite hard to include in fantasy setting without breaking immersion.

 

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Shit...just put laser guns and robots and what not in a fantasy setting...problem solved...

That gets a bit cheap though. There's only so many Ancient Dwemer DVD players and Ancient Dwemer Attack Helicopters and so forth that you can do before the joke gets stale and you're left with a setting that's lost much of its distinctiveness.

 

I mean you can blend the two genres in the right setting, but there are some itches that S/F scratches better for me than fantasy does.

 

if there's an unknown entity that eats worlds in a sci-fi work, with the power of science and a well placed blaster shot or nuke inside the alien mothership it will all be sorted out in a jiffy...in a high fantasy setting though, the fear of seeing a demon from an ancient tomb materialize before the adventurer is palpable as well as it is fantastic...I can still have chills when reading  Robert E. Howards' The Black Colossus starring Conan as the protagonist...

Nah. There's a wizard just out of camera shot who's going to slag that thing with Call Lightning. Bad writing is bad writing regardless of genre. Which isn't to say that REH is bad, but you're holding up genre classic against a charicature of badly written SF. It's not really a fair comparison.

 

Or I am just biased towards hot elven women...

It's possible ... :)

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Imho it's much less about the genre (the X-series has or at least some titels had a lot of mods to give another example for si-fi), and that's true for modding as much if i like it or not. For example, i love both fire & ice and dune. But not because of swords, magic and laser weapons. What i've read from Asimov so far is awesome, but technology is hardly mentioned... and it wouldn't make much difference if they use magic or tech, it's about social science .

 

I think it's a little bit harder to write really bad sci-fi than really bad fantasy because even bad sci-fi authors know they should explain stuff a little bit, while in fantasy magic can explain everything easier. But only a little bit. I don't see that one or the other has more or less restrictions, though. I want to be invisible, should i use my magic cape or my flux-destabilisator to create an another-people-problem field? :P

On the other hand it's great when you recognize that somebody who writes about physics actually knows what he's writing about even in the details, but it makes me sick when the opposite is the case (usually IT-stuff in movies a là "I have 3 seconds to defragmentate the computer or it will explode!!!", "It's impossible to break that crypto, it's ROT13!"). At least i never felt this kind of sickness with fantasy. ;)

 

The main point for me is always the story, atmosphere and the people around this stuff. In games it matters if they have intresting characters, dialogues and quests, not if these guys wear a bow or a laser gun. Hell, why shouldn't somebody in FO wear a bow? A weapon you can craft by yourself, which uses ammo you can craft yourself. As long as the character doesn't wear a Power armor at the same time, it would make sense imho. And as long as it makes sense, i'm fine with it. :)

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Personally I don't like fantasy unless it has an edge to it, which is funny because Daggerfall is my favorite TES game and one of my favorite games in general. When I say "edge" I don't necessarily mean Game Of Thrones style, just something with some substance, grit and sincerity about the setting/not playing it safe and following the fantasy genre zeitgeist of the time it was created. Morrowind did this flawlessly, while I feel Skyrim to a large degree and Oblivion to a lesser, are guilty of this.

 

As for sci-fi, I love it and it can literally go anywhere in terms of setting, a very versatile genre.

 

Just as a side-note, I'd love to see a sandbox game set in a pulp fiction (the genre not the movie) type universe, like John Carter of Mars or Flash Gordon.

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I can't stand pure fantasy genres usually cause of how restrictive they are when a great majority of them are set in the bronze age, or middle age at the most; The lore behind the world is usually pretty locked in as well, like in Skyrim, there's no travel to other planets since the planets are gods in their lore, the stars are only pin pricks in the void. 

You can't have modern looking mods or outfits cause it breaks away from general immersion, you can't have most modern tech either unless it's via some sort twist on Dwemer science.

Sci-fi on the other hand is pretty open, almost anything can be explained away as being advanced technology, even stuff that seems like magic.  You can travel to other worlds stuck in the bronze age, you can go to futuristic worlds too, RPGs are simply way more flexible when you've got something based on science over gods and magic in my opinion.

Never really got into Skyrim over Fallout cause of most of that, I'm just waiting until Fallout 4 gets more mods and tools similar to NV and FO3 somewhere down the road.

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I can't stand pure fantasy genres usually cause of how restrictive they are when a great majority of them are set in the bronze age, or middle age at the most; The lore behind the world is usually pretty locked in as well, like in Skyrim, there's no travel to other planets since the planets are gods in their lore, the stars are only pin pricks in the void. 

 

You can't have modern looking mods or outfits cause it breaks away from general immersion, you can't have most modern tech either unless it's via some sort twist on Dwemer science.

 

Sci-fi on the other hand is pretty open, almost anything can be explained away as being advanced technology, even stuff that seems like magic.  You can travel to other worlds stuck in the bronze age, you can go to futuristic worlds too, RPGs are simply way more flexible when you've got something based on science over gods and magic in my opinion.

 

Never really got into Skyrim over Fallout cause of most of that, I'm just waiting until Fallout 4 gets more mods and tools similar to NV and FO3 somewhere down the road.

 

Pretty much the same reason why I never got into Skyrim, outside of adult modding, myself. When it comes to TES, I feel Bethesda is playing it too safe with the lore and not exploring some of the really interesting stuff that's in there.

 

FO 3 is decent enough to me as an sandbox homage to the series, plus the Capitol Wasteland is great and very atmospheric. NV stands way above it though and always will with it's plot.

 

Same problem I had with Skyrim sadly is applied right back to FO 4 and how lackluster I found it. Never even finished it yet, probably will someday.

 

edit: I forgot to mention that I love Point Lookout and The Pitt, honestly think they are a better experience than FO 3. PL's setting and atmosphere is great, along with the pitt. The latter's story is a bit goofy towards the end, but is still stronger than FO 3's lol

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Shit...just put laser guns and robots and what not in a fantasy setting...problem solved...

 

Escaflowne was a great anime <3

 

Personally i love scifi, but i'll go back as far as magitek stuff like In said fantasy mecha anime.

 

Was mentioned earlier though, there haven't been any heavily mod friendly scifi games. Pinning my hopes on cyberpunk 2077, They did say it'd be more open world than Witcher? I think...

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I loooooooooooove SciFi. Fantasy is just way easier for me on the suspension-of-disbelief side. For example, I'm way more comfortable with dimension-hopping outsiders in The Witcher than in Cyberpunk2020 (And have/will get both, thanks Ciri ;) ). Cynerpunk 2020, while being over-the-top is distubing sober as well and "inherited" a lot from our reality, forming my expectation. The Witcher OTOH seems way less hard and fast, even if it's generally pretty down-to-earth in the books.

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I think there might be a somewhat recent factor to take into account with this question. The OP mentions how the modding scene exploded after Oblivion was released, so for the sake of the point I'm going to try and make lets stick to the Elder Scrolls and Fallout games. I would hazard guess that these two franchises have contributed more to the modding scene then most other games and that they were where a great deal of people were introduced to modding first hand.

 

So lets look at the games themselves. Oblivion: A big success, one that I would say opened the doors to the average gamer, both pc and especially console, to the open world sandbox setting. And if Oblivion didn't do this, Fallout 3 certainly did, while also bringing the Fallout franchise to the mainstream. New Vegas followed shortly after. Though it may not have been as big or successful a release as F3 - I certainly remember the rough start the game hard, facing criticisms over its buggy game-play and how quickly the game could be finished - it certainly has become a game many still enjoy.

 

Then came along Skyrim. Undeniable success. There was a few people that said it was Fallout with swords instead of guns but hey, if that was true a lot of people must have wanted that. Either way, it has a modding scene that's still going strong and recently the game was remastered.

 

And finally we come along to Fallout 4. Let's just face the music on this one, F4 wasn't the knock out success Bethesda was expecting it to be and it wasn't quite the game a lot of us gamers were hoping for. Maybe that was our fault. Maybe we just wanted Fallout 3/New Vegas, but with a new game engine and set in Boston. Maybe Bethesda took a wrong turn during development and tried too hard to force a story on us.That, the season pass debacle, and the quality of the DLC later released didn't earn F4 a lot of favor.

 

Finally I get to my point! And that being that with how F4 somewhat dropped the ball, there isn't as many people playing it. And with how there isn't as many people playing it, there isn't as much demand for mods. If I'm right, that leaves Fallout 4, the sci-fi game, with a weaker modding scene then Skyrim, the fantasy game, which was recently revitalized with the Special Edition.

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I think there might be a somewhat recent factor to take into account with this question. The OP mentions how the modding scene exploded after Oblivion was released, so for the sake of the point I'm going to try and make lets stick to the Elder Scrolls and Fallout games. I would hazard guess that these two franchises have contributed more to the modding scene then most other games and that they were where a great deal of people were introduced to modding first hand.

 

So lets look at the games themselves. Oblivion: A big success, one that I would say opened the doors to the average gamer, both pc and especially console, to the open world sandbox setting. And if Oblivion didn't do this, Fallout 3 certainly did, while also bringing the Fallout franchise to the mainstream. New Vegas followed shortly after. Though it may not have been as big or successful a release as F3 - I certainly remember the rough start the game hard, facing criticisms over its buggy game-play and how quickly the game could be finished - it certainly has become a game many still enjoy.

 

Then came along Skyrim. Undeniable success. There was a few people that said it was Fallout with swords instead of guns but hey, if that was true a lot of people must have wanted that. Either way, it has a modding scene that's still going strong and recently the game was remastered.

 

And finally we come along to Fallout 4. Let's just face the music on this one, F4 wasn't the knock out success Bethesda was expecting it to be and it wasn't quite the game a lot of us gamers were hoping for. Maybe that was our fault. Maybe we just wanted Fallout 3/New Vegas, but with a new game engine and set in Boston. Maybe Bethesda took a wrong turn during development and tried too hard to force a story on us.That, the season pass debacle, and the quality of the DLC later released didn't earn F4 a lot of favor.

 

Finally I get to my point! And that being that with how F4 somewhat dropped the ball, there isn't as many people playing it. And with how there isn't as many people playing it, there isn't as much demand for mods. If I'm right, that leaves Fallout 4, the sci-fi game, with a weaker modding scene then Skyrim, the fantasy game, which was recently revitalized with the Special Edition.

You're actually completely wrong about the status of Fallout 4 (with all due respect).

 

Fallout 4 has had more players/downloads in its initial 3 month release compared to Skyrim, FO3, and FONV. After a year, FO4 still had a greater number of players compared to Skyrim, FO3, and FONV in their first year all according to Steam player statistics. Currently, FO4 has more mod downloads from the Nexus than Oblivion, FO3, and FONV.....even though it's been out for significantly less. FO4 has an equal number of mods with FONV but is behind Oblivion and Skyrim......and once again FO4 is a little over a year old. In terms of initial success, FO4 is currently the KING and it continues to reign supreme.

 

However, I do agree with your other points that FO4 did fall short in terms of quality. Right now FO4 is going strong but it may not get to be as strong as Skyrim after 5 years because of the points you mentioned.

 

It is still too early to tell but based on statistics and the amount of users FO4 has, FO4 has the chance of becoming the most modded and played game if the trends stay the same or possibly increase.

 

The interest is definitely there, and people haven't quit playing FO4. The ONLY reason why we THINK the modding community is slowing down is because of god forsaken release of Skyrim SE. You bet your sweet ass that if that game didn't come out, the Silverlock team would have had a functional script extender for Fallout 4 and then we would have seen a tremendous boom of Fallout 4 content in such a short period of time.

 

Unfortunately that is not the case, and more so with the dumb Fallout 4 VR being announced I hope this won't set back the team further.

 

EDIT: I also want to add that Bethesda has stated that Fallout 4 is their most successful game based on initial and current sales figures. This is from a statement they made On February 7, 2017 (or another date in the beginning of February). They are continuing to see sales that surpassed any other game they made. 

 

Not gonna lie, it irks me a bit when FO4 is viewed as a complete failure. That just adds to the despair and pessimism about the game. Sure the game was lackluster in its replayability and role play elements but Bethesda did something right with the game if people still play it and have hopes for it. I just don't want all this negative attitude to cause Fallout 4 to fail when it could have been a success. DONT GIVE UP SO EARLY PEOPLE!!

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I prefer sci-fi over fantasy any day, but then again, I *mean* sci-fi.  I don't mean Star Trek and Star Wars; I mean things like John Ringo's Looking Glass series.

 

For gaming I like both -- Halo for almost-sci-fi, and MassEffect for sci-fantasy-fi, and then Oblivion and Skyrim (and the original EverQuest, not the money grabber it eventually became).

 

But I hate Fallout, and always have.  From the first version of it I bought for my then-little-kid daughter back in 1996 (or 97?  When the heck was it?) to today, I hate it.  It creeps me the hell out.  I won't even stay in the same room when it's being played, and you'd have to bribe me with huge sums of money or amounts of chocolate to even consider playing it, let alone modding it.

 

But then I have kind of a love-hate attitude to Bethesda anyway.  I love the basic ideas and framework of the Elder Scrolls stuff.  But I hate their weirdass woodelf lore, I think their reversed vampires are stupid, and I resent the living hell out of the fact that they basically -- and KNOWINGLY -- release a shitty, buggy skeleton of a game, and say "Okay, here ya go -- now mod it so the skeleton actually moves, has skin, clothes, and intelligence."

 

But that's just me.

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If I were to guess it's probably because swords & sorcery is a lot more fantasy than science fiction. It's really an "anything goes" scenario, compared to Sci-fi which usually feels confined to the scientific rules and meta naturally involved with it.

 

I would mark this as a best answer, if it didn't seem like this tread ought to be open to any reasonable opinion.

 

It's very true that fantasy is far more open to imagination than sci-fi, which truly is governed by strict rules.

 

Thanks a lot, Anonny for your good insight.

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Yea sword and Sorcery. If I had to choose between modding a game like skyrim or fallout, it would be skyrim.

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because it's easier to answer "magic" more than "science" with *insert some theory here*

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 

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On 12/19/2016 at 7:25 PM, arpaschad said:

Shit...just put laser guns and robots and what not in a fantasy setting...problem solved...or hopefully someone would 3dfy the Shadowrun games which combines both aspects...it all falls down on the modders preference and mostly by what the people would like to see more... I think SCI-FI is an easy world devoid of any real dangers that tap into the primordial fears of mankind unlike the fantasy genre does...if there's an unknown entity that eats worlds in a sci-fi work, with the power of science and a well placed blaster shot or nuke inside the alien mothership it will all be sorted out in a jiffy...in a high fantasy setting though, the fear of seeing a demon from an ancient tomb materialize before the adventurer is palpable as well as it is fantastic...I can still have chills when reading  Robert E. Howards' The Black Colossus starring Conan as the protagonist...

 

 

plus fantasy settings is sexually rampant and diverse, what with slavery, secret rituals and other taboo being prevalent in a fantasy world, with magic in the mix...the sex in sci-fi worlds are kinda...clean and unsexy IMHO...methodical like a sex android...(LoL coming from someone who strongly advocates sex robots IRL)

 

Or I am just biased towards hot elven women...

You can have all that in a Sci Fi setting. Our world have an overpopulation problem and we have people that do not fit in unable to move elsewhere causing conflicts. Invent a reasonably cheap space engine and people will be able to leave earth to form their own odd communities out here. People can live on planets, on asteroids, moons in space station that resemble outdoor earth on the inside and i spaceships. Invent a stardrive on top of all that and we can go even further.

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I can't really agree with the idea that sci-fi is more restrictive than fantasy. I feel it's actually the other way around. You can totally put swords and sorcery in a sci-fi setting (then call it "Star Wars" and go on to create one of the most popular franchises in history) or just go full sci-fantasy with space elves, space orcs who happen to be reality-bending fungi... things, chaos gods and spooky robo-skeletons because at that point why not?

 

On the other hand, I dare you to go the Bethesda forums and idly muse that it would be cool to have firearms in the next TES game. You'll wait a total of 2 minutes before being assaulted by a litany of excuses for why that would be completely unacceptable and a violation of some sacred made-up whatever. *grumble grumble*

 

But the reality is that there's simply more fantasy games that have modding capabilities than sci fi. In fact, the overwhelming majority of sci-fi games with official modding support that I know of are strategy games and 4Xs which is rather niche compared to RPGs.

 

If a good sci-fi sandbox on the scale and modding capability of TES games ever came out, maybe then we'd have better basis for comparison ^^

 

I'm not really counting Fallout, it's kinda its own thing. It has sci-fi elements but that's like comparing Skyrim to a historical setting. Sure it has swords and a lot of people who never bathe but it's not actually medieval Europe.

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