Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Keyaki » Mon Aug 20, 2012 11:31 pm

the_hermit wrote:
Keyaki wrote:
Could it be that the reason Mama are real-digitizing people are to digitally archive humanity and the world to survive an apocalypse? Maybe Tail Concerto takes place after .hack//?


Tail Concerto has no connections to .Hack.

Read about Mama again. They're trying to preserve the nature of mother earth because they believe that all of its resources will be depleted in the next few decades if mankind continues on the pace of energy use that they're on now. They're trying to find a way to halt all human activity and preserve the nature of earth and its natural resources without outright killing humans. That's where Real-Digitalization seems to come in.


'She predicted the complete extinction of all life on Earth within the next 1000 years if current emission trends continued.' And in Tail Concerto humanity has gone extinct. I think I'm wrong but I just thought it would help if you knew my train of thought.


Its just coincidence. Just because she predicted it doesn't mean that it happened. Besides, she said that ALL life not just humans would die out.

Not to mention Tail Concerto came out WAY before .Hack.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Kuukai » Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:10 am

the_hermit wrote:Where exactly are these links? Forgive me if it's someplace obvious.



the_hermit wrote:I haven't seen the Thanatos Report yet, are the people who are talking about it the ones who actually bought .hack//Versus, or is it actually subbed yet or is there a summary out there? I just finished watching The Movie and I'm craving more, lol.
I bought it.
the_hermit wrote:I heard rumours that there is a computer terminal that hast he CC Corp logo on it.
Keep in mind the CC2 and CC logos are basically the same, so it could easily just be a self-insert. But there are weirder things, like Evangelion being a successor to... Nadia?
(Phantom) Thief wrote:Can some one elaborate I am confused. And yes I finally gave in to start reading bullet. But wouldn't it be easier to explain that a double-ware are more compatible humans for real digitization and that mama is manipulating the wavelength through The World to better apply to the rest of the population?
I think this is just getting into speculation. All we know is Amagi could presumably only do doublewares (although it's never explained if he or Lara are doublewares), Aura could do anyone, and Versus can do anyone who isn't an "anti-doubleware." The wavelength of light thing helps everything make sense, but the only place I believe it was mentioned is an optional Helba email, so it's not a central element of the plot or anything. Usually they just talk about how wireless computers do it, Helba fills in the gap. It's great that Link answers almost every question you could have while playing it, but yeah like I said I doubt the wavelength thing will ever be a central plot point.

There are a hundred explanations why they're doing better. Sophia, more time to research, AIKA could suddenly be evil and helping them. Metronom thought that studying a doubleware would help, maybe they did that. I guess all I'm really trying to say is we don't really know.
(Phantom) Thief wrote: To add I received .hack//Quantum I(Introduction) today, if there there's real digitization, soul digitization what are the chances of their being another form of digitization? Hermit was in isolation but what about the character from Introduction? BTB I spy Zelkova !_!
I'm pretty sure real and soul exhausts the possibilities. Even being non-comatose while playing the game with your mind would just be "partial" soul or something. Is Zelkova in i? I always thought Zelkova was Spoke from .hack//Legacy.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby (Phantom) Thief » Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:54 pm

Kuukai wrote:
(Phantom) Thief wrote: To add I received .hack//Quantum I(Introduction) today, if there there's real digitization, soul digitization what are the chances of their being another form of digitization? Hermit was in isolation but what about the character from Introduction? BTB I spy Zelkova !_!
I'm pretty sure real and soul exhausts the possibilities. Even being non-comatose while playing the game with your mind would just be "partial" soul or something. Is Zelkova in i? I always thought Zelkova was Spoke from .hack//Legacy.


Zelkova & Kaede just recieve a one page cameo that's all. But outside of Real, Soul & Comatose Digitzation I believe that manipulation of the dead might be possible after reading Introduction. In biology scientists can take the cells and DNA of the dead to create a sudo copy or children of that individual. Also what about mimicing the thought processes of someone who no longer exist. (I guess Phyllo is an example.) When I think of Soul Digitalization, I've been imagining subject as frozen but still alive. In addition can digitzation work in reverse? Granted the subject would need a strong level of a pre-programmed state or detailed body to survive. What about leaving someone in literal liminality? If characters can become trapped on either side, is it possible for someone to exist on the line itself and experience both enviorments at once?

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Keyaki » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:49 am

Something tells me that Mama was behind CC Corp hiring Schicksal and the attempt to capture Aura in the first place.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Kuukai » Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:47 am

They were watching, in any case.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby ataraxia » Fri Aug 24, 2012 2:24 pm

To be honest, I'm a little disappointed with just how much the series has strayed from its original premise. I think that might be a major reason for its huge drop in popularity.

The original .hack's theme was very simple: a single-player video game mimicking an online RPG. But they seem to have dropped that theme entirely after G.U. .hack//Link hardly resembled an MMO at all.

I'm also disappointed with how much of the series' original air of mystery's been lost over time. I suppose it can't be helped since the original mysteries surrounding The World and the Epitaph of Twilight have been solved, but I still miss them. Things were also so much more simpler then. The World and Aura were merely the expressions of love Harald Hoerwick felt for the late Emma Wielant. Now we have all this eco-terrorist stuff that's completely risen far beyond the original scope of the series. I suppose I can't judge anything without seeing how it all plays out first, but even so...

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby (Phantom) Thief » Fri Aug 24, 2012 4:16 pm

ataraxia wrote:To be honest, I'm a little disappointed with just how much the series has strayed from its original premise. I think that might be a major reason for its huge drop in popularity.

The original .hack's theme was very simple: a single-player video game mimicking an online RPG. But they seem to have dropped that theme entirely after G.U. .hack//Link hardly resembled an MMO at all.

I'm also disappointed with how much of the series' original air of mystery's been lost over time. I suppose it can't be helped since the original mysteries surrounding The World and the Epitaph of Twilight have been solved, but I still miss them. Things were also so much more simpler then. The World and Aura were merely the expressions of love Harald Hoerwick felt for the late Emma Wielant. Now we have all this eco-terrorist stuff that's completely risen far beyond the original scope of the series. I suppose I can't judge anything without seeing how it all plays out first, but even so...



I am sorry to hear that. A problem might be that most of the content is just Japanese. What makes .hack a mystery is the involvement of the player within the game. However international viewers haven't recieved a translation of the games or multimedia and have to relie on plot summaries to understand the story. In addition ever since G.U. there were more spoilers and background content around which could edit someone's impressions of the game. 3rd onward seems to focus on explaining these mysterious and arousing the series' conclusion. At the moment I can reccomend reading .hack bullet.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Keyaki » Fri Aug 24, 2012 4:26 pm

3rd onward seems to focus explaining these mysterious and arousing the series' conclusion.


Well they did say in the beginning that it was the end of .Hack "going out with a bang" with the intent of answering all of the questions that weren't answered before.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby ataraxia » Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:41 pm

(Phantom) Thief wrote:I am sorry to hear that. A problem might be that most of the content is just Japanese. What makes .hack a mystery is the involvement of the player within the game. However international viewers haven't recieved a translation of the games or multimedia and have to relie on plot summaries to understand the story. In addition ever since G.U. there were more spoilers and background content around which could edit someone's impressions of the game. 3rd onward seems to focus explaining these mysterious and arousing the series' conclusion. At the moment I can reccomend reading .hack bullet.


Actually, my opinions are also the result of knowing more or less what's going on in the current season as well. While not perfect, my Japanese is good enough to more or less know what's going on in the series, currently.

I've seen a playthrough of .hack//Link, and I did understand it. I also know what was going on with .hack//Versus and Thanatos Report, and I've also seen the movie so I know what went on there.

Basically, part of the charm of the original series for me was how nearly everything was from the perspective of an ordinary player/person who initially doesn't know anything about what's going on, but instead had to go through various ordeals and fit together various clues in order to understand everything. I especially loved the speculation aspect of .hack//SIGN, .hack//Liminality and the original games, where characters like Kite, Bear, etc., etc., who didn't know a thing about Harald or Aura initially, blindly tried to pen their way through an unwritten map, so to speak, and eventually came to their answers through trial and effort. G.U. features it to a lesser extent, since it was less a puzzle and more Ovan slowly explaining things over time, which kinda disappointed me. .hack//Roots also lacked a major mystery element, since none of the characters aside from Ovan, Naobi and Ender, all secondary characters who never really did anything, knew that there was even a mystery to begin with.

.hack//Link and .hack//The Movie were missing that aspect entirely. There's never a greater mystery; everything was kinda just the machinations of someone else, whereas in the original games, none of it was really planned or calculated. Harald never meant for things to turn out the way they did, and a lot of Morganna's actions were due to her slowly-increasing madness, so there was no one to really tell anyone what was going on; they had to do everything on their own. In that regard, Tokio's probably my least favourite protagonist. I don't think he's a bad character, but his personality is entirely unsuited for any sort of mystery-solving or speculation. He kinda just runs in blindly without thinking about anything, and eventually he just kinda stumbles upon an answer he wasn't really looking for. Even in .hack//The Movie, it's not like Sora solved anything on her own; she was approached by an American agent who DID know everything was going on and had everything explained to her without her even having to wonder "Gee, these events sure are mysterious. I wonder where I can find more answers?" .hack//Quantum was surprisingly decent about that, with the characters actively looking for answers on their own, but I was still kinda disappointed since it all felt sort of secondary and relatively anticlimactic compared to the stuff before it.

And now the scope's gotten so huge that that sort of thing's kinda impossible. There's no way a normal player would know anything about any eco-terrorist organizations or the like, and there's no way they'd be able to find out about those things through normal research. By this point, a normal player would HAVE to be told everything from someone who knows. There's no way finding Epitaph fragments in an online gaming or investigating bugs and viruses would ever yield the answers they'd need. The revelations in .hack//The Movie and Thanatos Report have effectively killed any sort of potential in-story speculation and individual investigation.

Also, I'm still unhappy about how none of the games since .hack//G.U. have really resembled an MMORPG at all, which was always kind of a big thing for me.

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Keyaki » Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:43 pm

ataraxia wrote:
(Phantom) Thief wrote:I am sorry to hear that. A problem might be that most of the content is just Japanese. What makes .hack a mystery is the involvement of the player within the game. However international viewers haven't recieved a translation of the games or multimedia and have to relie on plot summaries to understand the story. In addition ever since G.U. there were more spoilers and background content around which could edit someone's impressions of the game. 3rd onward seems to focus explaining these mysterious and arousing the series' conclusion. At the moment I can reccomend reading .hack bullet.


Actually, my opinions are also the result of knowing more or less what's going on in the current season as well. While not perfect, my Japanese is good enough to more or less know what's going on in the series, currently.

I've seen a playthrough of .hack//Link, and I did understand it. I also know what was going on with .hack//Versus and Thanatos Report, and I've also seen the movie so I know what went on there.

Basically, part of the charm of the original series for me was how nearly everything was from the perspective of an ordinary player/person who initially doesn't know anything about what's going on, but instead had to go through various ordeals and fit together various clues in order to understand everything. I especially loved the speculation aspect of .hack//SIGN, .hack//Liminality and the original games, where characters like Kite, Bear, etc., etc., who didn't know a thing about Harald or Aura initially, blindly tried to pen their way through an unwritten map, so to speak, and eventually came to their answers through trial and effort. G.U. features it to a lesser extent, since it was less a puzzle and more Ovan slowly explaining things over time, which kinda disappointed me. .hack//Roots also lacked a major mystery element, since none of the characters aside from Ovan, Naobi and Ender, all secondary characters who never really did anything, knew that there was even a mystery to begin with.

.hack//Link and .hack//The Movie were missing that aspect entirely. There's never a greater mystery; everything was kinda just the machinations of someone else, whereas in the original games, none of it was really planned or calculated. Harald never meant for things to turn out the way they did, and a lot of Morganna's actions were due to her slowly-increasing madness, so there was no one to really tell anyone what was going on; they had to do everything on their own. In that regard, Tokio's probably my least favourite protagonist. I don't think he's a bad character, but his personality is entirely unsuited for any sort of mystery-solving or speculation. He kinda just runs in blindly without thinking about anything, and eventually he just kinda stumbles upon an answer he wasn't really looking for. Even in .hack//The Movie, it's not like Sora solved anything on her own; she was approached by an American agent who DID know everything was going on and had everything explained to her without her even having to wonder "Gee, these events sure are mysterious. I wonder where I can find more answers?" .hack//Quantum was surprisingly decent about that, with the characters actively looking for answers on their own, but I was still kinda disappointed since it all felt sort of secondary and relatively anticlimactic compared to the stuff before it.

And now the scope's gotten so huge that that sort of thing's kinda impossible. There's no way a normal player would know anything about any eco-terrorist organizations or the like, and there's no way they'd be able to find out about those things through normal research. By this point, a normal player would HAVE to be told everything from someone who knows. There's no way finding Epitaph fragments in an online gaming or investigating bugs and viruses would ever yield the answers they'd need. The revelations in .hack//The Movie and Thanatos Report have effectively killed any sort of potential in-story speculation and individual investigation.

Also, I'm still unhappy about how none of the games since .hack//G.U. have really resembled an MMORPG at all, which was always kind of a big thing for me.



Wow...

You pretty much read my mind pretty well. Granted I don't hate the 3rd season as much as I used to. But I completely agree with you.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby ataraxia » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:46 pm

I don't hate Link. It just has none of the qualities I love about .hack.

It doesn't emulate an MMO and there's no real overarching mystery.

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Keyaki » Fri Aug 24, 2012 9:50 pm

ataraxia wrote:I don't hate Link. It just has none of the qualities I love about .hack.

It doesn't emulate an MMO and there's no real overarching mystery.


I agree. Though I've barely seen in gameplay of Link, what I've seen doesn't look much like a simulated MMO.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Kuukai » Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:08 am

I don't think .hack as a series was ever defined by the "simulated MMO" gimmick. It helped it sell at first, but .hack is so much more than that.

Most tellingly, .hack has never even been that close of a simulation. It's an abstraction, used to tell a story. Every part of the simulation bends and yields to the story, to the single-player game. You can't create a character, the entire world stops when you look at a menu, the towns are tiny, and so on.

.hack//Link actually *adds* some features to the simulation compared to past incarnations. Suddenly you can customize your appearance. Who ever heard of an MMO where none of the equipment you have shows up on your character? Monsters have chat, which is a lot of fun. On the higher-level end, suddenly you're on a team of *people.* Mistral wants to run off and hunt for items. Running a guild no longer just consists of combining weapons together like in .hack//G.U. (how did that even make sense?), suddenly there's personnel management.

I'm just pointing this out to illustrate who a weird metric "RPG simulation"-ness is. .hack//Link is different game-wise, but a lot of that has to do with the platform. It also has to do with the fact that you play a character physically in the game. I don't see anything "un-.hack" about this. The very first scene that introduced the world to .hack was trying to convey a game that suddenly became real, as Tsukasa finds himself suddenly experiencing the disgusting tendrils of slime on the floor he woke up on. .hack//Link does this pretty well. Direct experience is a theme of the game. Tsukasa and Tokio and AIKA all note that they're "the same." In-game, Tokio is animated to move in a more "real" way than his predecessors. And of course, there's no desktop.

Tokio and Saika do a lot of mystery-chasing and problem solving. Sora not so much, but the whole Aura thing has been done before. Anything that goes on for 10 years is going to change, just like the people who created it. They can't be expected to do the same thing over and over. But over time, what they've built has given them the potential to do something completely novel. As you pointed out they've woven a massive and intricately complex history. There's something to that, it gives them the unique opportunity to tell a story on a more epic scale.

"We may be more connected than we thought."

This is the message of the final season. A seemingly innocuous phrase spoken by a seemingly innocuous character who we suddenly find, surprisingly, at the center of absolutely everything. Seemingly random elements from a timeline released for promotional purposes 10 years ago suddenly solidify, and the man who created Deadly Flash is being hunted down by the man who created the organization that created the item that Hermit uses to create the list that connected him to his donor Sakuya and was retrieved by the woman whose brother worked for the man who reconstructed the AI system designed by a lovesick man to create his child while being manipulated by an organization that created the virus that Sora fought and all the players of The World slowed down by a perfect unison of actions. Everything's connected. There are stories about connection within the connections. And now Aura and AIDA are part of a much greater narrative involving the fate of the world. That's something you couldn't do in Season 1, and Season 1 simply isn't something you could do in Season 3.

One of my favorite things about .hack always been the emotional impact, and this season, focusing on characters and the connections between them, is doing a really good job at that.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby VirusCoreS » Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:46 am

Kuukai, I respect you (_ _)

I agree with him. I can say it decently, but...Every era has it's own uniqueness, and it's all completing each other. Story-wise, I liked third era the most, because it's a huge intertwining fate mass of 'people behind the computer', be they're player or creator. And it really fits 'Connected' theme Kuukai said before.

I just wish they end the series by involving every important characters from very first to the very last. And what I mean by that, involving real Kite and Ryou Misaki with Tokio. (Kite's real identity is one of biggest mystery in .hack)
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby ataraxia » Sat Aug 25, 2012 2:06 pm

Kuukai wrote:[post]


I respectfully disagree. The MMO this has always been a large part of the series' identity. The entire series centres around an MMO, so it only makes sense that the gameplay should mimic one. While it's true that the simulation was often imperfect (such as being able to pause the game whenever you open a menu), but those were just the unfortunate consequences of being a one-player game.

Furthermore, just being able to customize a character's appearance isn't enough for something to be an MMO. An MMO puts large emphasis on community and conversation. You can't even access the BBS in .hack//Link because you're basically just playing in simulations of the The World's past experiences.

The "team of people" aspect you were talking about would be a lot more effective if A) you could have more than two characters in your party at a time and B) there was more interaction between the different members. Sure Mistral wants to find rare items, but what does that even have to do with the rest of the "group" Does anyone else in the Twilight Knights care? No. That's less "team" than it is a single person's desires. If it's that sort of thing, then the older games had plenty of that. As it stands, it's less a team and more different factions just happening to be in the same group with barely any interaction between them. The character interactions were just so incredibly limited there's no way I could feel satisfied with something like that. It's true that even in a guild, not everyone would talk to everyone, but in the Twilight Knights, the divide between the SIGN, G.U., etc., etc., groups were so great that it felt like they weren't even trying at all. And though it's true that a small number of extra missions had characters from different titles interacting (such as Albireo and Tsukasa), those felt more like an afterthought rather than a real part of the story. The "personal management" you mentioned was also just manipulating the technical aspects of the game, and not quite as meaningful as you seem to think it is. A guild is more than what you do in it; a guild as about the people in it. In that regard, Canard in G.U. was better than the Twilight Knights ever were. At least all the members talked and interacted with one another.

I've always had a problem Real Digitalize from the start. There was a certain level of realism in past games. Even if a lot of the stuff that happened were impossible as far as the real world is concerned, there was a vague feel of, "ahh, this could possibly happen someday in the future". That illusion added to the immersion-factor of the story. Even if it could never happen in a thousand years, it still felt like it could to a certain extent. But if you expect me to believe that people can be turned into light particles and transported physically into a video game in just ten years, then you've got another thing coming. Just the fact that Tokio is physically transported into the game means he's not "the same" as Tsukasa and AIKA. Maybe this isn't a big deal to you, but to me, this is a very important distinction, and one I'm not entirely comfortable with. I do agree that a series should change and evolve over time, but the one thing it should never do is go beyond the general scope of the world it was built on from the beginning. Maybe you might believe that this is simple the natural evolution of the series, but I sure as heck don't, and I'll likely never agree with that assessment.

Tokio and Saika's "mystery chasing" heavily involves Tokio running around and Kingdom Heartsing it up with the other characters. Saika doesn't even tell Tokio anything until over halfway through the game, so Tokio doesn't even know there's much of a mystery to solve. "Go find the Chrono Cores" isn't exactly the case of the century, you know. I don't care if they try to solve the mystery of Aura or whatever. It's just that Tokio makes no real effort to really LEARN anything about what's going on. He's just following Saika's orders. He blindly, without once questioning the meaning or potential consequences of his actions, makes his way up the Tower of Akasha and messes up Aura. Only then does he realize "Hm, maybe I should have thought more about this." But I know it's not entirely his fault. Saika made no effort to tell him a thing. She just kidnapped him and told him to find stuff. While I do find it a bit disturbing how Tokio doesn't question ANY part of that, I will accept it as part of his character. And that's just it, his character is the problem. Kite wanted to learn more about The World to help his comatose friend. Haseo wanted to learn what Ovan was up to, what AIDA was, everything, in order to save Shino. They had the drive to try and learn what was going on from the beginning, and they even had doubts occasionally about whether what they were doing was the right thing. Tokio never even gets a chance to have such doubts. I do like straightforward characters, but characters who don't really think for themselves, just look and their surroundings and experiences and really think, aren't really conducive to solving mysteries. In the end, Saika, Geist and Fluegal kinda just tell him everything he needs to know, and that's pretty much the end of it. All that's left after that is to beat up Aura.

And finally, that thing about how everyone's connected? That's... kind of a given? Everything that happened across the original Project .hack series was connected. Everything centred around a single large mystery. G.U... was considerably less so, but the idea of the third season having everything be connected isn't quite the grand revelation you seem to be making it out to be. While it's certainly interesting, see, just being connected isn't really enough. All this really means is that a bunch of random players (some less random than others, admittedly), were involved in a large number of incidents headed by someone else. The thing is, while everything may be connected, it doesn't really satisfy me, which is what my original post was about. It may just be me being spoiled by the past to series, but they left a deep impression on me (the first season moreso, admittedly) and it left me wanting more. This... isn't really the more I wanted. What I want isn't a greater scheme or a deeply intertwined series of events. What I want is a good story, a story filled with mystery, speculation, interactions, revelations. I want to see the characters desperately struggle to find the answers that they need, I want to see them doubt their actions before they finally succeed, I want to see them strive towards a goal that they must achieve no matter what with everything they have. Tokio and Sora only fulfilled that final qualification.

Sakuya the first two of those qualifications to a degree (though she never really learned what "goal" she had to strive towards since in the end, since she just stumbled onto Hermit and he told her everything she needed to know), but ultimately, I think Quantum is my favourite of the third season at this point. Unlike Tokio who was clueless and Sora who was just told by various people what to do, Sakuya and and Iori still tried to do what they can on their own, despite having nothing to really go on. Of course, in the end, Saeki just kinda figures everything else herself while Sakuya and Iori are still more or less clueless. It wasn't quite everything I wanted, but I think it was a step in the right direction; it had a larger quantity of what I wanted out of .hack. A greater mystery, the protagonists desperately trying to solve that mystery. A certain drive that Tokio and Sora lacked.

And, perhaps this might be a bit more OPINIONS!!!111!! than necessary, but I've always felt that atmosphere was a very important part of the .hack series. The first Project .hack series had a wonderfully unique era, a mixture of fantasy, mystery, reality and cyberpunk. It was very well done. .hack//G.U. was somewhat less so, but still preserved some of that atmosphere. ... I'll be frank. I think that the atmosphere in the stories of the third season is completely inferior to that of the ones before it. Like there's an imbalance, like something important is missing. The original .hack and even G.U. to an extent was pretty reliant on human psychology to an extent. The mind of Harald, who was the origin of everything. The psychology of the Epitaph Users, and the AIDA that was interested in that. The current season lacks that psychology aspect. You don't really go as deep into the minds of the characters as prior seasons. That's just really disappointing to me. Even if the series changes, I don't think the importance of the characters' mentalities and psychological states should become any less important. The World is created by its players, so doesn't that mean the players' minds should get a large amount of focus as well?

No, it's not even anything that complicated. Basically, I just want to see the characters just sit around and talk. Just talk. About their emotions, their experiences, their interests. I want them just... be people. I want to see glimpses of their life, what they like, what they enjoy, what they dislike. .hack//SIGN had the characters just talk and enjoy each others' company, telling each other bits and pieces about themselves. .hack//Liminality gave us glimpses of what kinds of lives the three girls lived, their interests, such as Mai and her violin, Yuki and her resentment towards her sister, Kyo and her general feeling of "in-between-ness" in the town she lived. .hack//Roots feature heavily on that too, and the games gave us e-mails. The third season just... doesn't have that. The characters feel less like people and more like, well, characters. It's like their lives aren't important, like the pasts that shaped their personalities in the present don't matter. This is very, very sad. I want the characters to be people. This has nothing to do with the story or the overarching plot, so why does it have to change? Why can't CC2 give the characters, the ones who are building the story around their world, more focus?

Yes. In the end, I think that's what matters most. I can forgive whatever changes CC2 makes the to the world, whatever kind of huge plot they want to do, so long as they bring that "people factor" back.

And this is just my own complete selfishness so you can ignore it, but I miss Kajiura. :(

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby Keyaki » Sat Aug 25, 2012 2:48 pm

My eyes hurt now.

Who ever heard of an MMO where none of the equipment you have shows up on your character?


Ragnarok Online. :3

Most tellingly, .hack has never even been that close of a simulation. It's an abstraction, used to tell a story


Fair enough, but in all honesty Project .Hack projected that abstraction the best. .Hack Conglomerate did okay but sacrificed the abstraction a bit to give way for the drama and action.

Running a guild no longer just consists of combining weapons together like in .hack//G.U. (how did that even make sense?), suddenly there's personnel management.


Elaborate on the personnel management.

I respectfully disagree. The MMO this has always been a large part of the series' identity. The entire series centers around an MMO, so it only makes sense that the gameplay should mimic one.


And I respectfully disagree. Its true that being a simulated MMO has been a part of its identity, Kuukai has a point that its interaction with the outside world has been an even bigger part. Even in the //Liminality OVA its been emphasized that Harald's goals with Aura was to bring the "outside inside"; paraphrasing of course. .Hack Conglomerate and GU progressed this further with the M2Ds allowing players to play The World R:2 on the go. (IIRC, the M2D have Augmented Reality right?)

Furthermore, just being able to customize a character's appearance isn't enough for something to be an MMO. An MMO puts large emphasis on community and conversation. You can't even access the BBS in .hack//Link because you're basically just playing in simulations of the The World's past experiences.


This I agree with and brings me to the manga style of cinematics the decided for this game. I can't think of an justifiable reason for that besides probably just being bored of what they were doing before.

you could have more than two characters in your party at a time


I disagree, I always did like the fact that it took only 1-2 people to make a party.

I've always had a problem Real Digitalize from the start. There was a certain level of realism in past games. Even if a lot of the stuff that happened were impossible as far as the real world is concerned, there was a vague feel of, "ahh, this could possibly happen someday in the future". That illusion added to the immersion-factor of the story. Even if it could never happen in a thousand years, it still felt like it could to a certain extent. But if you expect me to believe that people can be turned into light particles and transported physically into a video game in just ten years, then you've got another thing coming. Just the fact that Tokio is physically transported into the game means he's not "the same" as Tsukasa and AIKA. Maybe this isn't a big deal to you, but to me, this is a very important distinction, and one I'm not entirely comfortable with. I do agree that a series should change and evolve over time, but the one thing it should never do is go beyond the general scope of the world it was built on from the beginning. Maybe you might believe that this is simple the natural evolution of the series, but I sure as heck don't, and I'll likely never agree with that assessment.


I admit, I hated the idea of Real Digitalization from the start, but I warmed up to it afterwards.Sure the method in which its achieved seems way too far-fetched to make much sense but I suppose that's where being open-minded comes into play. Its not like the theme of "humans being put in virtual space" hasn't been done before.

Go find the Chrono Cores" isn't exactly the case of the century, you know.


That I never understood and still don't. And I've seen both videos of //Link. Exactly what's with the Chrono Cores?

The original .hack and even G.U. to an extent was pretty reliant on human psychology to an extent. The mind of Harald, who was the origin of everything. The psychology of the Epitaph Users, and the AIDA that was interested in that. The current season lacks that psychology aspect.


This I completely agree with. Not just psychology but anthroposophy.

This is the main reason why I can watch my complete DVD set of //SIGN and still have to watch the episodes over and over because I would always misunderstand or miss something.
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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby ataraxia » Sat Aug 25, 2012 3:24 pm

And I respectfully disagree. Its true that being a simulated MMO has been a part of its identity, Kuukai has a point that its interaction with the outside world has been an even bigger part. Even in the //Liminality OVA its been emphasized that Harald's goals with Aura was to bring the "outside inside"; paraphrasing of course. .Hack Conglomerate and GU progressed this further with the M2Ds allowing players to play The World R:2 on the go. (IIRC, the M2D have Augmented Reality right?)


No, see, here's the thing. I'm not talking about the plot, I'm talking about gameplay. If your game takes place in an MMO, then logically, the gameplay should also resemble an MMO. Because it's an MMO. Why even bother making the setting an MMO if the gameplay won't take advantage of that detail? It's not like I expect .hack//Versus to have gameplay resembling an MMORPG, because it's not an RPG. But The World is. That's what I'm getting at.

Keyaki wrote:
That I never understood and still don't. And I've seen both videos of //Link. Exactly what's with the Chrono Cores?


The Chrono Cores are basically the keys to the top of the Tower of Akasha which Aura hid into key members of the Twilight Knights so as to hide herself from Geist. Geist tricked Saika into searching for them, and Saika in turn used Tokio to find them.

This I completely agree with. Not just psychology but anthroposophy.

This is the main reason why I can watch my complete DVD set of //SIGN and still have to watch the episodes over and over because I would always misunderstand or miss something.


When I saw .hack//SIGN for the very first time, I was completely amazed. I was completely in love with this show. I didn't know why at the time, but as I grew older and more able to analyze things and put my thought into words, I finally understood.

It was the characters. The sheer thought and detail that was put into these characters just blew my mind. The way they were able to talk about just about anything without resulting in some kinda non-sequitur was just unbelievable to me. Like how Mimiru talked about her dad and his job as an architect once. This had nothing to do with anything. Nothing at all. The plot, the general theme of the episode, nothing. Or small hints and clues as to Bear's real life profession. It gave the illusion that the writers had pretty much plotted out their entire lives up to that point. Every time a character spoke, it was like seeing the tiniest of glimpses into their lives. These characters weren't bound by some invisible, omnipresent, omnipotent power called "plot" or "theme". Like real people, they could do or say whatever they wanted, regardless of how much it had to do with what was going on around them. For the briefest of moments, for just the tiniest fraction of a second, you could almost believe that these characters were actually real. Of course, you'd immediately remember that it's just an animated television series and therefore completely fiction, but the idea that even for the most tiniest, microscopic of moments, you could be fooled just made .hack//SIGN so wonderful to me. I would often think to myself, "Ah, these characters really do have lives outside of this online game". This was just so wonderful to me.

Even in .hack//Liminality, some aspect of that remained. They could just said that the reason Mai is able to hear that A in C major note is because she just has really good hearing, but they didn't. We're given hints as to what kind of bond she has with her grandfather, the violin that she learned from him, her hobbies, her personal. None of these things are necessary for the plot at all. None of these things have anything to do with ANYTHING. But still, we're shown, just tiniest of glimpses, her normal, everyday life.

Even .hack//Roots, which I generally consider to be inferior to SIGN and Liminality, still had that "people factor". Such as Tabby's home life, such as the meteor shower they talked about, such as Sakisaka living in an apartment from which he can't see the meteor shower... Tiny things like that. Individually, these details are so small, so insignificant, that you might even wonder why they'd even bother putting that stuff in at all. But they add up. Little by little, the tiny details come together to form something resembling a whole. One plus one equals two, two plus two equal four. Like that, it all comes together and builds a solid foundation for which the character's current self, their personality in the present, stands upon.

Even in the games, through e-mails, you can talk with and interact with the characters, learning more about them, learn about their pasts, learn how and why they became the way they are today.

.hack//SIGN was what made me realize that cartoons aren't just for children, that they can be as deep as the writer desires for them to be. It made me come to my current conclusion that the characters and how you handle them are probably even more important than the plot itself. The characters are what DRIVE the plot in the first place. They're the ones who can make it flow, move. So you can't just ignore them or make them secondary. What I want from the third season is that same attention to detail, that same focus on the characters. The World is built by the players, so the players should get just as much attention as the plot itself. That's what I believe.

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby (Phantom) Thief » Mon Aug 27, 2012 12:21 pm

I read each conversation. And I had replies that were very polite and explanatory. But my power ran out and I've forgotten most of what to say. Nonetheless Ataraxia were you aware that in an earlier interview for the series, Matsuyama stated the system for .hack was originally designed from Phantasy Star Online and Final Fantasy XI. However none of the series resemble a full MMORPG setting. The areas are small and the field exploration for games are often limited. But from what it sounds like your more interested in the investigative abilities and the different social connections between each of the characters or ordinary players.

For .hack onward much of an MMO experience is simulated through e-mail, affection rates and opinions from each of the users throughout the plot of the series. G.U. and Link added PK battles, the first three series use area requests, interactive battle requests and individual offline schedules, .hack focused on server corruption, G.U. used in game social dilemma, Link expanded individual storytelling and Versus used battle comments. NPC have also always had the benefit of a BBS which is omitted for Link and replaced with mission e-mail or F-Skits, but continued in Versus. Link did re-size the exploration of towns and chat functions though, without graphical freedom I doubt many gamers wandered the town to speak with different even with the option existed, gamers do lose the ability to speak with to party members on the field but with how convincing the AI are within their e-mail, that loss is blurred, somewhat erased and kept at a minimum. I have no what Guilty Dragon will feature. Moreover, Versus does exclude much of the previous of benefits of a so I can agree with you on its distance from the rest of the series. However technically there are fighting MMORPG.

Furthermore about real digitization did you know the term cyberspace comes from a novel. Technology pauses from reaching the philosophies presented in modern literature but science does attempt to duplicate abstract ideas over time. All though its a stretch scientists today attempt a process known as quantum teleportation to convert items into tiny particles called photons and send them over long distances and into alternative environments. As for actual full imitation of an MMORPG, Fragment, Mobile and Guilty Dragon might be the only elements that do the idea its other justice.

From what I understand you are also interested in the development of the series using natural mysteries correct. However doesn't all mystery need an introduction in the first place? Kite was told about the epitaph, so were most of the cast for SIGN. G.U. was about a response team being led by cryptic bastards, Tokio was more interested in keeping his promise period but none of the characters knew the overall reason for his purpose in the dilemma and Versus is solution themed. Given this none of the main game series protagonists gave two mystery shakes about The World. Their actions are savior based although there is a slight difference in how the stories are presented. In fact would everyone agree .hack & Versus focus on the gamer as the player and their actions as they adapt to the situation leaving room for the environment around them and G.U. & Link pay attention to Haseo & Tokio and their development within the overall storyline creating space for the character? Plus forgive me for wondering so but presuming the characters are the drive of the story, then shouldn't fans focus on the characters in the first place. Thus at the moment and again I can recommend reading .hack bullet. Also as a note wasn't the overall mystery of .hack//Link AIKA & The Akashic Line.

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby ataraxia » Mon Aug 27, 2012 12:46 pm

Furthermore about real digitization did you know the term cyberspace comes from a novel. Technology pauses from reaching the philosophies presented in modern literature but science does attempt to duplicate abstract ideas over time. All though its a stretch scientists today attempt a process known as quantum teleportation to convert items into tiny particles called photons and send them over long distances and into alternative environments. As for actual full imitation of an MMORPG, Fragment, Mobile and Guilty Dragon might be the only elements that do the idea its other justice.


I don't particularly care about where an idea comes from. The concept of solid matter, much less human beings, being transformed into light particles and transmitted into a computer is still beyond the amount of belief I'm willing to suspend. I simply do not believe this will be possible to that extent in the current era, and a significant amount of time will have to pass before such things become possible, way more significant than just ten years. Some people have high thresholds, but I'm not one of them. Unfortunately, I won't accept anything and everything that a story throws at me, regardless of its general quality. Transferring peoples' consciousness into an online game is one thing. The idea is patently silly but the ideas behind it are vague enough so as to make it easier to accept. Real Digitalize is like twenty steps beyond that. It's such a huge jump that I simply am unable to accept it in the setting .hack has provided for me. If you're telling me to accept that Amagi Jyotaro developed a method to digitalize human beings prior to 2017, then you've got another thing coming.

The human consciousness is made up entirely of electrical signals in the brain. If, and this is a big if, IF someone were to somehow create a system that could affect those electrical signals, then MAYBE it MIGHT be possible to trap a human's consciousness in an online game. But there are still other problems. The processing power a human brain is actually superior to that of any computer's. By storing a human's consciousness into a game, it'd be the equivalent of trying to install a piece of 2012 software into a 1990 computer. On top of that, neurology isn't a fully mastered science; even the topmost neurologists don't know absolutely everything about the human brain. In order to do with Harald did, he would have to know more about the human brain than any neurologist on the planet. On top of that, he would also have to not only be a programmer decades ahead of his time, he would also had to have created hardware that could accommodate all that. It doesn't have to be said that no real life modern computer is capable of doing what Harald's system did. Forget creating an "ultimate A.I", even creating the components to POSSIBLY create that A.I. would be considered ludicrous. But that's not all. The captured minds are being a stored on servers which is connected to the internet. Take look at any online game. All of them will experience lag of some sort. A human mind would theoretically put more burden on a system than any game ever could. So the internet would also have to be ridiculously good too, way beyond anything we would have for at least a decade. But let's say Harald was a crazy super-genius who was better than every neurologist, engineer and programmer on the planet and did all that. Fine. That's the setting we were given so I'll accept that.

Now here comes Amagi Jyotaro. What did by creating Real Digitalization puts EVERYTHING Harald did to shame. In addition to storing a human's mind into a computer, he also stored their physical body, everything. The sheer amount of time, resources and manpower that it would take to do what Amagi did should have been staggering. SOMEHOW, Amagi was able to do it without anyone realizing, which means that SOMEHOW he managed to create a method that could transform a human being's mind and body into light particles and store them in a computer ALL ON HIS OWN. In the mid 2010s. Do you see why I have such a huge problem with this concept now?

I'm willing to suspend my disbelief for a good story, but .hack//Link pushed it too far for my tastes. Also, and this might be a bit of a low blow, but .hack//Link wasn't really that good of a story either.

From what I understand you are also interested in the development of the series using natural mysteries correct. However doesn't all mystery need an introduction in the first place? Kite was told about the epitaph, so were most of the cast for SIGN.


This is wrong. Kite actually found pieces of the Epitaph on his own before being told of their significance. He was only hinted at their connection starting from Vol.2, when Helba mentioned them. Prior to that, they just tried to gather whatever information they could from the BBS and mails. Even then, Helba didn't know everything that was going on, so Kite and his party still had to do their own research and come to their own conclusions. Same with the characters from SIGN. They came to various conclusions on their own, and weren't really told anything until they contacted Helba late in the series. Both times, they did their own research first before managing to obtain help.

As for G.U., while I'm ultimately dissatisfied with how the story played out for the most part, Haseo did attempt to figure out what was going on on his own, even if he was being stupid about it. But Tokio's different. He didn't know anything was going on until it was too late, and by then, helpful characters like Fluegel were around to tell him all the details. There was no need for Tokio to put any effort into speculating or researching anything on his own, and the thought never once occurs to him.

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Re: Plot of everything on the disc [SPOILERS]

Postby (Phantom) Thief » Mon Aug 27, 2012 5:39 pm

Too much even then huh? Fair enough. Although you would love moors law. My computer professor often predicts that as long as the performance of transistors double every 18 months on the average microchip would hold more capacity than the human mind before 2019. Trust begin by mentioning the advance of artificial intelligence and the professor will freak: Geminoid F just creates a facial expressions and the man turns queasy. But at the same time though against technology acceleration most if not all of society still drive non flying dead mobiles as a means of transportation.

ataraxia wrote:This is wrong. Kite actually found pieces of the Epitaph on his own before being told of their significance. He was only hinted at their connection starting from Vol.2, when Helba mentioned them. Prior to that, they just tried to gather whatever information they could from the BBS and mails. Even then, Helba didn't know everything that was going on, so Kite and his party still had to do their own research and come to their own conclusions. Same with the characters from SIGN. They came to various conclusions on their own, and weren't really told anything until they contacted Helba late in the series. Both times, they did their own research first before managing to obtain help.
.


As for epitaph that is exactly, what I was referencing Kite nor the SIGN cast were able to piece together the background connections involved from the information they located. For example in forensic we might question the evidence we have not because it is useless but to ask what is a clue without something solid to relate back to? I agree with the characters effort now but don't think it was all solo work.

ataraxia wrote:I don't particularly care about where an idea comes from. The concept of solid matter, much less human beings, being transformed into light particles and transmitted into a computer is still beyond the amount of belief I'm willing to suspend. I simply do not believe this will be possible to that extent in the current era, and a significant amount of time will have to pass before such things become possible, way more significant than just ten years. Some people have high thresholds, but I'm not one of them. Unfortunately, I won't accept anything and everything that a story throws at me, regardless of its general quality. Transferring peoples' consciousness into an online game is one thing. The idea is patently silly but the ideas behind it are vague enough so as to make it easier to accept. Real Digitalize is like twenty steps beyond that. It's such a huge jump that I simply am unable to accept it in the setting .hack has provided for me. If you're telling me to accept that Amagi Jyotaro developed a method to digitalize human beings prior to 2017, then you've got another thing coming.

The human consciousness is made up entirely of electrical signals in the brain. If, and this is a big if, IF someone were to somehow create a system that could affect those electrical signals, then MAYBE it MIGHT be possible to trap a human's consciousness in an online game. But there are still other problems. The processing power a human brain is actually superior to that of any computer's. By storing a human's consciousness into a game, it'd be the equivalent of trying to install a piece of 2012 software into a 1990 computer. On top of that, neurology isn't a fully mastered science; even the topmost neurologists don't know absolutely everything about the human brain. In order to do with Harald did, he would have to know more about the human brain than any neurologist on the planet. On top of that, he would also have to not only be a programmer decades ahead of his time, he would also had to have created hardware that could accommodate all that. It doesn't have to be said that no real life modern computer is capable of doing what Harald's system did. Forget creating an "ultimate A.I", even creating the components to POSSIBLY create that A.I. would be considered ludicrous. But that's not all. The captured minds are being a stored on servers which is connected to the internet. Take look at any online game. All of them will experience lag of some sort. A human mind would theoretically put more burden on a system than any game ever could. So the internet would also have to be ridiculously good too, way beyond anything we would have for at least a decade. But let's say Harald was a crazy super-genius who was better than every neurologist, engineer and programmer on the planet and did all that. Fine. That's the setting we were given so I'll accept that.

Now here comes Amagi Jyotaro. What did by creating Real Digitalization puts EVERYTHING Harald did to shame. In addition to storing a human's mind into a computer, he also stored their physical body, everything. The sheer amount of time, resources and manpower that it would take to do what Amagi did should have been staggering. SOMEHOW, Amagi was able to do it without anyone realizing, which means that SOMEHOW he managed to create a method that could transform a human being's mind and body into light particles and store them in a computer ALL ON HIS OWN. In the mid 2010s. Do you see why I have such a huge problem with this concept now?


A little. Amagi was one of two core research scientist for Project G.U. The sole event done in secret was Geist. Meanwhile the program for The World R:X was openly used by CC Corp. Moreover after rethinking it I can negotiate for the outward position of real digitization alone but haven't Harald & Jyotaro essentially completed the same idea? In 2006 Harald's prototype fragment relied on the same light frequency Amagi later researched during 2017. That same frequency was responsible for containing Saya. Afterward Harald then attempted to duplicate that frequency which created loose versions of those properties throughout the series such as becoming comatose namely soul digitization which is veritably an initial concept behind .hack. Level with me for a moment but I think the problem isn't real digitization but the extraordinary physics explained for the series in the first place. Harald found a natural signal that blurred the boundaries of a person''s existence and tried to incorporate it into the game. The event escalated as Morganna developed self realization and slowed Aura's process by purposely trapping users within the game. Later Amagi rediscovered this frequency and his legacy Geist duplicated the result through an electronic device, which from this the individual phases, AIDA, Aura, Sophia are all conductors for erasing the different between limitations the real world and the game with characters such as Ovan & Veronica as enablers of that hidden system while actors such as Midori are their own boat of surprises.


ataraxia wrote:As for G.U., while I'm ultimately dissatisfied with how the story played out for the most part, Haseo did attempt to figure out what was going on on his own, even if he was being stupid about it. But Tokio's different. He didn't know anything was going on until it was too late, and by then, helpful characters like Fluegel were around to tell him all the details. There was no need for Tokio to put any effort into speculating or researching anything on his own, and the thought never once occurs to him.


Noted and accepted. Even though Tokio wonders out the course of the game the most intuitive he ever exists is as 9.
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