So… Jade Empire.

Did it suck?  I’m running out of The Witcher and I can’t seem to get my head around Deus Ex: Human Revolution.  I keep ending up being stuck crouched behind a box on my first mission, out of Goddamned ammo, and being shot at by people who HAVE ALL THE GODDAMNED AMMO IN THE GODDAMNED WORLD…

Sorry.  I have issues with games where I keep dying before I can even level up once.

15 thoughts on “So… Jade Empire.”

  1. It’s one Bioware I never played (not sure why), and I know that a fair number of people have fond memories of it (much more than KOTOR2, heh).

    Of course, I’d really recommend getting Witcher 2 for $24 in the current Steam sale, but otherwise I bet JE is fine.

  2. I enjoyed it.

    I just finished DXHR a few days ago and IMHO if you’re getting shot at you’re doing it wrong. They should never know you’re there. Those early levels can be played fairly easily by just sneaking up behind people and using takedowns; just watch your timing and remember to drag the bodies out of the line of sight of the other guards.

    @HeartbreakRidge KOTOR2 was developed by Obsidian, not Bioware.

  3. I just finished watching a play-through of The Witcher 2 and I was blown away by the story, the action, and the crunchy, visceral feel of the combat. The channel I was watching (this fellow: said that it was much better than The Witcher 1. The guy who was playing it is a big old-school Fallout 1-style RPG nerd. Great broadcaster as well.
    So, back to the topic at hand; I got nothing on Jade Empire.
    What exactly are you having trouble with in the first mission? Remember the three rules of shooting in Deus Ex; headshots, headshots, and headshots. Or the corolary; if nobody is shooting, you don’t run out of ammo, and you don’t need all the headshots. Sneaky is better.
    That’s the problem with Deus Ex; if you play the game the way it was meant to be played, you’re a sneaky, stealthy hacker and you get through the missions like a ghost in the machine. In fact, you get substantial bonus experience point rewards for doing so (and get many, many more enhancements because of all that extra experience). Unfortunately, you’re going to get destroyed in the boss fights, as the boss fights seem to have their own rules when it comes to combat. As in; you go ahead and try to sneak up on the boss and do a take-down move. We’ll be here waiting at the reloading screen to discuss how well that worked.
    If you build a shooty combat character, you’ll walk through the boss fights, but you’ll also be sporting far less enhancements due to the lack of sneaking bonus experience rewards. It’s not exactly a double-edged sword, or dual sides of a coin (which it should be), it’s more of a “which part of the game do you want to be swearing about less” duality. Sneaky causes you to swear in three places (the boss fights), and shooty causes you to swear in many, many other places (due to being out of ammo, enemies set up to punish shooters, locked doors, etc).
    So, yeah. Sneaky is the way to go in Deus Ex. You only get punished three times for it. Which isn’t exactly an encouraging thing. It’s like that Ron White bit; “I didn’t know how many guys it would take to kick my ass, but I knew how many they were going to use.”

  4. @Kyle: Right, I didn’t quite word that the way I’d intended. Just got KOTOR and TOR on the brain lately!

    Agree with Kyle too – especially if you’re talking about the first mission before you get augmented?

    1. No, the first mission I had infinite ammo, too.

      The problem is that – even when I’m doing the sneaky version, I can’t seem to get close enough to the guards to get within range of the stun gun… wait, hold on. I’m not supposed to be shooting them, am I. I’m supposed to be going up to them and engaging them in melee, or whatever that takedown thing is.

  5. Jade Empire was fun enough on the xbox back in the day, never played the PC version. Of course, SWTOR launches on the 20th if you want to break your proscription of MMORPGs… I’m downloading the client right now (again).

  6. OK, just finished DL’ing the SWTOR client again and reserving all my normal names for release. It looks really, really good, Moe, if you like the Star Wars mythos… It’s basically a single-player RPG that you happen to be able to play with others, so it really shouldn’t bother your wife too much, right?

  7. I like Jade Empire. Some interesting characters and combat was fun. The minigame with the dragonfly was irritating though.

  8. Moe: You’re right. You’re NOT supposed to be shooting them. The stun gun is junk, ditch it. Just sneak up behind guys and put them to sleep manually. (tap the grapple button, don’t hold it that will kill the target… unless you’re going for that…)

    DX:HR is a proper stealth game… except when it isn’t i.e. the boss battles. You can go hog wild with the weapons in those. The tranq gun is your best steathly knockout weapon (can be tricky to aim though, particularly at long distances)

  9. I used the crap out of the stun gun and it works great. I don’t know why people call it junk. Different gameplay styles, it appears. The tranq gun made me sad as it’s hard to hide bodies from a distance. That’s why I prefer the close-up stun gun.
    Moe, you can hug cover and shoot around it without “standing up.” There’s times you can also stick just your arm out and shoot people, but the angles get weird on that one.
    The game rewards patience and punishes impatience. Be patient and don’t be afraid to run away and attack from another angle. It’s not a shooter. Don’t play it like one. Play it like you are the master of the battlefield and you dictate where and when the engagements happen.
    Be the Predator, not the Terminator.

  10. Personally, I’m not too good at the sneaking aspects of games. I was afraid I wouldn’t like the new Deus Ex. But, it really does give you options of how you want to play, and I played it as a killing machine. I left nobody alive in that first mission. It’s all about the surgical kills. You still sneak around, but just to get the most efficient killing angle. It was nice not having to worry about people behind me. Becuase they were dead.

    As for Jade Empire, I remember it fondly, if only hazily through the mists of time. It’s Bioware, so you know there’s no worries on the storyline and characters. The combat system was different, but not too bad. Also, I found out later that Nathan Fillion voiced the character of Gau the Lesser in the early game. I actually hooked the old XBox back up when I found out, just to verify.

  11. That happen in the first Medal Of Honor game, when you are storming Omaha Beach. It took me a while to realized there was a select path you had to follow or you would get killed. Maybe Jade Empire has the same ordeal.
    Keep trying. Never give up.

  12. Two of the three boss fights can be won trivially by stealth-specced characters.

    For the second one, use a stun gun and a pistol. When the boss runs towards you, hit her with the stun gun. This will make her spazz out for several seconds. Switch quickly to the pistol and shoot her repeatedly in the head. When she comes out of it she will run off and go invisible for a short time. Use this to reload the pistol and switch back to the stun gun. Eventually she will make another run towards you — repeat the cycle until she falls down and stays that way.

    For the third boss fight, cut left around the wall. The boss will jump over it. As he’s jumping, hit the takedown key repeatedly and you’ll drop him. (Takedowns don’t generally work on him except when he’s landing after a jump, so this is probably exploiting a bug. Given how bad the boss fights are in DXHR, though, I have no issues with that.)

    The first boss fight… well, that one is a bitch and I got nothing. I only managed to win it by maxing out on dermal armor and dropping the difficulty all the way down, and even then it took multiple tries.

  13. Just finished DXHR last week. Early on it’s much easier to play with stealth. There are a dozen ways through every level so always look for hidden paths. Stealth is good, but don’t neglect your combat augments because you will need them later for bosses. Once you get to later levels with more augs and upgraded guns you can do more combat wise without the sealth. Also, I carried the the stung gun with me for the entire game, and used it frequently. To each their own.

    Jade Empire was good. Been a long time since I played it though. Think KOTOR with Kung Fu. The combat is much more active though.

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