Author Topic: What breaks your immersion?  (Read 4303 times)

What breaks your immersion?
« on: 25 Aug 2017, 22:34 »
I thought about starting a discussion on what breaks the immersion in movies, books, adventure games,
these sort of things that makes you groan "No way, that isn't how it works!" whenever you see that
thing pop up in a work of fiction.

For example, one thing I've noticed in a lot of fantasy and historical movies is when we are told that the heroes are travelling through a wild forest,
yet all the trees are exactly the same size and the same species, and planted in square formations, so it's obviously a modern planted forest.
Once I've seen it, I can't unsee it! Just compare the images below:

Glenjamin

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #1 on: 25 Aug 2017, 23:24 »
For me the worst thing is when movies and games use misinformation/disproved theories in their stories

e.g There was that movie called "Lucy" that used that "We only use 25% of our brain" meme. Are you kidding me? Yeah I guess those super powers not only evolved into humans but also decided to be dormant for no reason.

Another thing that gets me is when two characters meet for the first time and then IMMEDIATELY after become love interests even though they've shared 2 lines of dialogue.

kconan

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #2 on: 26 Aug 2017, 04:51 »
  As you mention, repetitive environments and/or objects are a big one.  I also agree with Glenjamin that the "meet cute and instabang" is getting old in games.  Other big ones for me are fake doors, obstacles that aren't really that obstructing preventing me from going somewhere, and overly limited conversational choices when talking with characters.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #3 on: 26 Aug 2017, 07:20 »
I've become quite adept at spotting the formula used in TV shows and it's made some types of show hard to watch. Every episode of Castle (for instance) is exactly the same pattern but with s different crime and different supporting actors. All bookended by a home scene with the guy's family, just to give the illusion of progress through time between episodes. I only ever watch it now to prove myself right.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #4 on: 26 Aug 2017, 08:06 »
Yes, that's a reason why I have a hard time following criminal investigation series (CSI, Mentalist...) It gets old quickly.

To get back to adventure games, I don't like when games ask people to look for their own keys (to get out of your house/ start your car). Everybody can lose their keys from time to time. However I'm reminded that I'm not the hero since I don't know where he usually puts his keys.
« Last Edit: 26 Aug 2017, 08:31 by Creamy »
 

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #5 on: 26 Aug 2017, 10:20 »
Achievement notices in adventure games for linear plot moments...

Right when you are supposed to feel great about besting a hard puzzle and waiting to be drawn further into the story: That magical little popup in the bottom right corner shows up to remind you that you are actually just playing a game and you just earned an achievement that every single other player also got...

Makes me feel so special! >:(

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #6 on: 26 Aug 2017, 11:13 »
Something that annoys me, is when cars explode when being shot at. Since they don't do that in real life. I'm ok with it when the film (or game) is supposed to be over-the-top. But when it's supposed to be realistic, it puts me off.

To get back to adventure games, I don't like when games ask people to look for their own keys (to get out of your house/ start your car). Everybody can lose their keys from time to time. However I'm reminded that I'm not the hero since I don't know where he usually puts his keys.
What if it was used as a joke?
Such as being placed in a very obvious and easy to find place, the character quickly being classified as being forgetful, and the possibility to go off on a long red herring puzzle sequence just to get the keys if you didn't pick them up?

Achievement notices in adventure games for linear plot moments...

Right when you are supposed to feel great about besting a hard puzzle and waiting to be drawn further into the story: That magical little popup in the bottom right corner shows up to remind you that you are actually just playing a game and you just earned an achievement that every single other player also got...

Makes me feel so special! >:(
Same here. (nod)

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #7 on: 26 Aug 2017, 11:40 »
For me the worst thing is when movies and games use misinformation/disproved theories in their stories

e.g There was that movie called "Lucy" that used that "We only use 25% of our brain" meme. Are you kidding me?

Yes, they are kidding you – it's a joke. (Also, it's 10%.)

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #8 on: 26 Aug 2017, 12:01 »
Defibrillators.

I hate hate hate hate hate when people use defibrillators to restart the heart.
Defibrillators stop the heart, and it's the CPR the one you use to restart them.

So every time I see someone in a movie using a defibrillator (or sometimes any type of electricity) all I can think is "Great, now you made sure his heart stopped for good" while they electrocute the body over and over again until it magically starts the heart by itself.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #9 on: 26 Aug 2017, 12:13 »
If anyone here hasn't heard of it yet, go to tvtropes.org and find even more pet peeves.

CaesarCub: "Television is trying to kill us"
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/JustForFun/TelevisionIsTryingToKillUs

Danvzare: "Every car is a Pinto"
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/EveryCarIsAPinto

Creamy and Stupot+: "Strictly formula"
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/StrictlyFormula

kconan: "Cut and paste environments"
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/CutAndPasteEnvironments

Glenjamin: "Science marches on"
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ScienceMarchesOn

Be aware, Tvtropes can make you binge read!

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #10 on: 26 Aug 2017, 12:57 »
(Also, it's 10%.)

Which comes, I believe, from some very early brain-scan technology tests where they discovered that we only use about 10% of our brain at any given time under normal circumstances.

But it's a different 10% on average and keeps shifting to all parts of the brain depending on what is needed at the time.

The popular media reported this as meaning that the human brain has an unused 90% and who knows what kind of extra abilities we could (gasp) possess if we could only tap into that hidden 90%!!!

And popular fiction ran with the idea (and who wouldn't??? It's an awesome jumpoff point into a story!!!) until we had seen it so many times in fiction that we took it as fact...

It's just not true though... Well... For you guys at least... ;)

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #11 on: 26 Aug 2017, 16:10 »
I don't think I've ever actually seen it featured in a piece of fiction before Lucy; AFAIK it was mostly just floating around as a meme, an obviously wrong idea people would mindlessly repeat – like those claiming that before antibiotics were developed, you died if you just got a scratch – anyone who's ever been around kids for even a short time (or been a child themselves) should be able to immediately spot the flaw in that factoid.

What breaks my immersion in adventure games is when dialogue/conversation options don't update to reflect things that have happened in the game. Like, if you've discovered in the course of the game that your neighbor is a serial killer and have had him arrested, the next time you talk to your doorman, that topic might come up, maybe?

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #12 on: 26 Aug 2017, 18:10 »
If anyone here hasn't heard of it yet, go to tvtropes.org and find even more pet peeves.
...
Be aware, Tvtropes can make you binge read!
I've read a lot on Tvtropes myself, and part of that is what gave me the idea to start this thread. (roll)
What breaks my immersion in adventure games is when dialogue/conversation options don't update to reflect things that have happened in the game. Like, if you've discovered in the course of the game that your neighbor is a serial killer and have had him arrested, the next time you talk to your doorman, that topic might come up, maybe?
Yes, that can lead to some pretty silly situations in the game. It reminds me about a similar problem I had with Assassin's creed 3, a sandbox game set during the american revolution, during the main missions you fight to expel the redcoats from the colonies, and after the player completes the story missions, the revolution is over and all the British soldiers that patrol the map are replaced with american militiamen to show that the British are gone and America is independent now.

But there are many optional sidequests where the player is supposed to defend civilian npc:s from redcoat soldiers oppressing them in various ways, and if the player hasn't completed them before completing the main story,
all the British forces are now replaced with american soldiers doing exactly the same thing, unintentionally evoking this before/after gag in Tintin and the Picaros, wherein Tintin topples a dictatorship in order to install a new and better leader:

Both Assassins Creed 3 and Tintin end with a big revolution that ultimately makes no difference for the people, only the flags and uniforms have changed,
except that in Tintin it was an intentional satire of the nature of dictatorships and in Assassins Creed it was lazy programming.

A similar immersion breaker occurs in RPGs when you start as a nobody and work your way to the top, and even after saving the kingdom, getting knighted and hoarding a pile of riches, people still approach the hero to ask them to collect pie ingredients or kill rats in their basement or what not. Because of course someone in gold armor with a truck-sized sword on their back is the type of person you'd ask for help with your grocery shopping.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #13 on: 26 Aug 2017, 18:49 »
Quote
Quote
Quote from: Creamy on Today at 08:06
To get back to adventure games, I don't like when games ask people to look for their own keys (to get out of your house/ start your car). Everybody can lose their keys from time to time. However I'm reminded that I'm not the hero since I don't know where he usually puts his keys.

What if it was used as a joke?
Such as being placed in a very obvious and easy to find place, the character quickly being classified as being forgetful, and the possibility to go off on a long red herring puzzle sequence just to get the keys if you didn't pick them up?

It shouldn't be too long IMO. And never without a reason.

A good example is the beginning of Resonance, when Ed is looking for his phone. I can overlook because:
1) He looks like he didn't get much sleep.
2) you can find the phone in a matter of seconds with the ring.

Done poorly, it's just a mundane task turned into an unfair quest.

Quote
even after saving the kingdom, getting knighted and hoarding a pile of riches, people still approach the hero to ask them to collect pie ingredients or kill rats in their basement or what not.
That's because you didn't improve your charisma stats ;)
« Last Edit: 26 Aug 2017, 18:57 by Creamy »
 

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #14 on: 26 Aug 2017, 19:47 »
The Rambo thing (I'm sure there's some witty term for it on TV Tropes), where "One Man" (/movie voice) with basketball-sized biceps and imbued with mystical powers of invincibility and The M16 Of Unreloading, takes on an infinite number of well-armed, well-trained paramilitary goons, Arabic terrorists, "African" gun runners, North Koreans, Russian ex-KGB, Mexican Drug Dealers, etc. etc. etc. receiving only a single stray bullet wound, which is a cheap ploy to get Swedish Ass Model clone X to give him treatment, followed shortly by teh Sexual Healings, and then go on to destroy King Cobra / Hitler 2.0 / etc. with a kamikaze helicopter or something.

This is also a reason why I have a hard time playing FPS, RPG, virtually any game that involves one character or a party, killing a whole lot of stuff, and still being immersed. It's why I switched to AGS in particular, and point-and-click in general.

I designed Neofeud specifically so that the main character, who is a wanna-be Bruce Willis, gets himself killed virtually every time he ever tries to go full-Expendables.  In fact, there's an achievement in Neofeud, called "Sylvester Warzennegar". ;)

I should add, I don't mind this sort of thing at all in de-immersive post-modern films like Kung Fury, and in fact expect and love the way it satirizes and plays with the tropes.
« Last Edit: 26 Aug 2017, 19:51 by SilverSpook »

AnasAbdin

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #15 on: 26 Aug 2017, 21:15 »
Clichés that serve a specific agenda against another debating one. Whether I'm with or against it, when the movie or the game adopts one, it doesn't only break my immersion but it turns me off to the point where I cannot keep watching/playing (or at least keep thinking about it until the end).

Technically speaking, the misuse or abuse of sound effects can kill the mood instantly.

Also this..

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #16 on: 26 Aug 2017, 21:43 »
While I personally have some suspension of disbelief for the "one man army trope" if it's done in an intentionally fun and over the top way, one action trope that annoys me is the Designated Girl Fight, whenever several heroes and villains face off, the one girl on the hero team always only fights the one girl on the evil side, and in some bad cases the evil girl only exist so that the token girl on the team will have someone to fight. But it's not just women, I have also seen similar scenes when two opposing sides both have token black guys. It's just plain ridiculous to think that people actually in a real fight would sort themselves out so that everyone fights their counterpart with the same sex/race/background.

Mandle

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #17 on: 27 Aug 2017, 03:53 »
Also this..

OMG! That was awesome!

Zoomify!

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #18 on: 27 Aug 2017, 05:41 »
I can forgive works of fiction quite a lot because I know how hard they are to make. My immersion breaker could be called "escapism blocker", since I get thrown out of the story if something reminds me of my life outside the screen, mostly in a bad way.

SilverSpook, try this: "Conservation of ninjutsu"
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ConservationOfNinjutsu

Blondbraid, these days anyone will ALWAYS cry "sexism/racism/whateverism" (not you), so it's a situation of "damned if you do, damned if you don't".

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #19 on: 27 Aug 2017, 12:13 »
Blondbraid, these days anyone will ALWAYS cry "sexism/racism/whateverism" (not you), so it's a situation of "damned if you do, damned if you don't".
I know, but I've never seen any actual feminist complain about a male and female character facing off in a fair fight, and likewise, I don't think anyone would complain about a similar situation with two characters from different races.
Instead, this is an old trope from when most writers considered women to be the weaker/fairer sex who wouldn't be able to fight a real man, and then it stuck because they thought it unfair to hit a lady.
Now, I don't think you should hit anyone who's weak and cannot defend themselves, but that could be applied to men and women alike.

Mandle

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #20 on: 27 Aug 2017, 12:17 »
Instead, this is an old trope from when most writers considered women to be the weaker/fairer sex who wouldn't be able to fight a real man, and then it stuck because they thought it unfair to hit a lady.

I always thought they wrote in the hot-girl on hot-girl fight for the sexy value.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #21 on: 27 Aug 2017, 12:31 »
I always thought they wrote in the hot-girl on hot-girl fight for the sexy value.

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #22 on: 27 Aug 2017, 15:05 »
Hot Fuzz is an awesome movie, it makes great parody of tons of action and police-movie tropes!

Speaking of parody, one thing that I'm tired of seeing in adventure games is intentionally dumb and convoluted puzzles making fun of dumb and convoluted puzzles. Having the protagonist pointing out how dumb and irritating a puzzle is doesn't automatically make it fun, the player is still forced to do a stupid puzzle, except the programmer knew it was stupid and still put it there. One example that comes to mind is this scene in The Whispered world. That puzzle was not fun and did not feel rewarding to solve, it just yanked me out of the story.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #23 on: 27 Aug 2017, 15:08 »
Having the protagonist pointing out how dumb and irritating a puzzle is doesn't automatically make it fun, the player is still forced to do a stupid puzzle, except the programmer knew it was stupid and still put it there.
They do it because it's the easy way.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #24 on: 27 Aug 2017, 17:24 »
To get back to adventure games, I don't like when games ask people to look for their own keys (to get out of your house/ start your car).
This. This is the most boring way to start a game. And no, this does not get me closer to the protagonist, I don't enjoy looking at stuff in an apartment of an unknown person without no reason and I play adventure games because I want interesting stories and puzzles. The first few minutes are the most important ones of a game, don't fill them with random errands.

What breaks my immersion in adventure games is when dialogue/conversation options don't update to reflect things that have happened in the game. Like, if you've discovered in the course of the game that your neighbor is a serial killer and have had him arrested, the next time you talk to your doorman, that topic might come up, maybe?
And that. This is so important. I hate it when I have to find a certain item and after finding and using the item, I can still ask everyone where to find that item. Many developers are too lazy to fix this. But actually, you just have to turn some dialog options on and off.

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #25 on: 27 Aug 2017, 22:16 »
Hot Fuzz is an awesome movie, it makes great parody of tons of action and police-movie tropes!

Speaking of parody, one thing that I'm tired of seeing in adventure games is intentionally dumb and convoluted puzzles making fun of dumb and convoluted puzzles. Having the protagonist pointing out how dumb and irritating a puzzle is doesn't automatically make it fun, the player is still forced to do a stupid puzzle, except the programmer knew it was stupid and still put it there. One example that comes to mind is this scene in The Whispered world. That puzzle was not fun and did not feel rewarding to solve, it just yanked me out of the story.

Yeah, this thing of trying to be ironic and ripping on bad design while using bad design really makes one want to punch the dev in the face. :D

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #26 on: 28 Aug 2017, 00:15 »
What breaks my immersion in adventure games is when dialogue/conversation options don't update to reflect things that have happened in the game. Like, if you've discovered in the course of the game that your neighbor is a serial killer and have had him arrested, the next time you talk to your doorman, that topic might come up, maybe?

On a similar note. When you've exhausted all conversation with a character but they hang around in the same location until the end of the game. It's annoying because you have to keep clicking on the character to see if they have anything new but they don't ("Hello, I wanted a word" "Certainly, how can I help?" "That's all, goodbye"). Unless they are a barman or unless they have some recipie or clue that you need to listen to again, there's no point in that character being there anymore, especially if hours and days have passed in game time. Surely they have a home to go to.

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #27 on: 05 Sep 2017, 13:02 »
I came to think about another big thing which breaks my immersion, and that is when a story that takes place in a historical/fantasy setting have female characters walking around in public with long hair past their shoulders. Until very recently, an adult person walking around with their head uncovered wouldn't be considered fully clothed, and everyone in the western world, with the exception of young children and sometimes unmarried virgins, would have some form of veil or hat covering their head outdoors and in public, and women would have their hair tied up in a bun or braided. To a medieval person, a grown woman walking around with her hair out would be the equivalent of someone in modern times walking around in their pyjamas.

However, this wasn't done simply for modesty reasons, as someone who has long hair I can tell from experience that if I don't tie it back, it's virtually impossible to do any physical work or exercise without risking my hair getting caught on something or getting in my eyes. If you also take into account that before electricity was a thing, people relied on candles and torches, long hair flowing free would be a real security risk, so every time I see a movie or fantasy illustration of a woman running around with long hair hanging down, it breaks my immersion.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #28 on: 05 Sep 2017, 13:15 »
Nothing breaks immersion more for me than the absurdic stupidity of characters and similarily absurdic structure design ... ( *cough* "Alien: Covenant" *cough* )
« Last Edit: 05 Sep 2017, 13:23 by Crimson Wizard »

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #29 on: 05 Sep 2017, 13:28 »
To a medieval person, a grown woman walking around with her hair out would be the equivalent of someone in modern times walking around in their pyjamas.
I have actually seen people walking around in their pyjamas... several times in fact. Almost enough to make me question whether or not it's a new fad. ???

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #30 on: 05 Sep 2017, 13:36 »
Or the stupidity of the world in general. Watched "the Hitman's Bodyguard" recently and because of a bit at the start the whole movie was sort out rendered pointless to me (and then at the end where they doubled down on similar stupidity and double ruined it).
The start has some dictator at the Hague being tried for war crimes and a witness describing how the dictator came to his house and murdered his family and imprisoned him. The defence then objected because there was no evidence for that, and it was all hearsay. And the judge sustained it.
And all the while I was thinking "The guy just GAVE evidence, and it was the literal opposite of hearsay!"

Oh well, was a pretty bland movie otherwise too.
« Last Edit: 05 Sep 2017, 13:43 by Babar »
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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #31 on: 05 Sep 2017, 15:08 »
I came to think about another big thing which breaks my immersion, and that is when a story that takes place in a historical/fantasy setting have female characters walking around in public with long hair past their shoulders. Until very recently, an adult person walking around with their head uncovered wouldn't be considered fully clothed, and everyone in the western world, with the exception of young children and sometimes unmarried virgins, would have some form of veil or hat covering their head outdoors and in public, and women would have their hair tied up in a bun or braided. To a medieval person, a grown woman walking around with her hair out would be the equivalent of someone in modern times walking around in their pyjamas.

However, this wasn't done simply for modesty reasons, as someone who has long hair I can tell from experience that if I don't tie it back, it's virtually impossible to do any physical work or exercise without risking my hair getting caught on something or getting in my eyes. If you also take into account that before electricity was a thing, people relied on candles and torches, long hair flowing free would be a real security risk, so every time I see a movie or fantasy illustration of a woman running around with long hair hanging down, it breaks my immersion.

Good point, but to anyone who's just remotely interested in history, any depiction of the middle ages will appear quite ridiculous. You have to take it all with a grain of salt, really.
How there are burning torches or candles everywhere, how armour looks like modern-day goth-punk outfits, how everyone is clean, how bows are really easy to draw and shoot, how building fires is easy to do, how nobody is always cold during winter, how hardly anyone is ridden with skin diseases or rotting teeth, how people survive with wounds instead of dying from sepsis, and so on, and so forth...

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #32 on: 05 Sep 2017, 15:56 »
how nobody is always cold during winter

How could I forgot, this is something I get easily triggered about (and loose immersion instantly). Maybe because I live in relatively cold climate :).

I remember playing Skyrim, the game supposedly about a very cold place. Entering town called Winterhold, with stone buildings, stone walls, stone pavement everywhere, and snow, lots of snow. Immersion is good in that game, so I can say that I feel how cold should be there. And then - there is a homeless pauper who does not have any shoes, and sleeps on some kind of thin blanket on the street! This person would be dead next morning in real life.
Same thing with bandits walking around with naked torsos, wooden houses on the mountain ridges with holes and missing boards everywhere (just imagining the winds going through the living room makes me shiver).

Hah, and in one of the latest episodes of the Game of Thrones when John Snow goes off with his team to catch a zombie (dumb idea on its own), these guys go into the blizzard, and no one is covering their frigging head! Some of them were even bald, so no natural protection either. They would come back with their noses and ears frozen off (in best case, lol).
« Last Edit: 05 Sep 2017, 15:59 by Crimson Wizard »

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #33 on: 05 Sep 2017, 16:37 »
  how everyone is clean, how hardly anyone is ridden with skin diseases or rotting teeth, how people survive with wounds instead of dying from sepsis, and so on, and so forth...
While it is true that they didn't have sinks and showers or deodorant during the middle ages, I think many historical movies take it too far in the opposite direction,
where people look like they have been literally rolling in filth. Even if cleanliness standards were lower than today, I'm pretty sure medieval people wouldn't pick dung
off the ground and smear in their faces, yet several actors look like they have done exactly that before they started filming. :-X

If anyone is interested, here is a link with descriptions on how people actually managed their hygiene in history.
how nobody is always cold during winter

How could I forgot, this is something I get easily triggered about (and loose immersion instantly). Maybe because I live in relatively cold climate :).
...
Hah, and in one of the latest episodes of the Game of Thrones when John Snow goes off with his team to catch a zombie (dumb idea on its own), these guys go into the blizzard, and no one is covering their frigging head! Some of them were even bald, so no natural protection either. They would come back with their noses and ears frozen off (in best case, lol).

I also think many movies and video games get it wrong, like when Jon Snow falls into icy water and just gets up and keeps going, in real life he would have to take of his wet clothes and start a fire immediately or risk hypothermia.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #34 on: 05 Sep 2017, 16:54 »
To a medieval person, a grown woman walking around with her hair out would be the equivalent of someone in modern times walking around in their pyjamas.
I have actually seen people walking around in their pyjamas... several times in fact. Almost enough to make me question whether or not it's a new fad. ???
You hang out a lot at Walmart don't you. That is almost daily event at Walmart.

What gets me out of the immersion is when I play a character in an adventure game that has forgotten who they are, then they walk around town and remember who everyone else is.
« Last Edit: 05 Sep 2017, 16:57 by dayowlron »
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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #35 on: 05 Sep 2017, 19:10 »
I came to think about another big thing which breaks my immersion, and that is when a story that takes place in a historical/fantasy setting have female characters walking around in public with long hair past their shoulders. Until very recently, an adult person walking around with their head uncovered wouldn't be considered fully clothed, and everyone in the western world, with the exception of young children and sometimes unmarried virgins, would have some form of veil or hat covering their head outdoors and in public, and women would have their hair tied up in a bun or braided. To a medieval person, a grown woman walking around with her hair out would be the equivalent of someone in modern times walking around in their pyjamas.

It's a fair point, but history is long and the "Western world" is packed with different peoples and traditions, so I'm strongly inclined to believe that there has been considerable variation in this matter. Can you say with absolute confidence that it applies universally, in every place, every tribe, every time (until relatively recently), for Christian, Jew and pagan, at every level of society?

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #36 on: 05 Sep 2017, 20:00 »
For me in sci-fi/fantasy, it's the use of idioms, words and phrases that don't make sense in the story world. I've been complaining about an orc saying the word "menu" for years, then recently someone made a meme about it and went viral. And I sulked.

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #37 on: 05 Sep 2017, 20:42 »
It's a fair point, but history is long and the "Western world" is packed with different peoples and traditions, so I'm strongly inclined to believe that there has been considerable variation in this matter. Can you say with absolute confidence that it applies universally, in every place, every tribe, every time (until relatively recently), for Christian, Jew and pagan, at every level of society?
While there have been some exceptions, most cultures have either worn their hair short or tied back, in the Islamic world many of the women wear veils or headscarves, viking women are depicted wearing their hair in knotted buns, with cloth tied around their hair outdoors, most images of Chinese and Japanese women have them wear different combinations of braids and buns, and many native american women and men wear their long hair in braids so the idea isn't exclusive for medieval Europe. And medieval Jews were often even required by law to wear special hats that marked them as Jews, and as far as I know orthodox Jews have very strict rules about what to wear, and that includes women not showing off their hair. Wearing an elaborate hairstyle have also been a universal sign of wealth for a long time, just like wearing fancy clothes and jewelry.

Now, there have been exceptions, but they have been relatively rare, and many of the historical pictures that show women with long loose hair are showing them in a situation where they aren't concerned with appearance or practicality, such as resting or lounging in their home or garden. In some pictures it was a way of showing that they were in mourning or otherwise had neglected grooming themselves, akin to showing a man with a five'o clock shadow.

Now, while fantasy does take place in it's own world with it's own rules, most of it is very closely based on medieval Europe, so therefore it's jarring to me to see characters wear costumes that look very medieval, but hairstyles that wouldn't have been accepted in the middle ages. And TV-shows and Movies that are actually set in a real historical time period has no excuse. Then there are also the practicality reasons I mentioned before, having the hair tied back and hidden under some headwear is a great way of keeping it clean and protecting it from the elements, and it's hard to clean your hair without access to modern showers and shampoo.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #38 on: 06 Sep 2017, 00:43 »
@Blondbraid. I think devs would be happy to consider your complaints. Animating long hair must be a ball-ache, so any excuse not to have to do it would be welcome.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #39 on: 06 Sep 2017, 07:54 »
To expand on my own rant:
Typically in popular culture, bows are considered the weapon of choice for the lean, agile types, and predominantly women. In reality, a bow of the kind used in medieval warfaring could have a draw weight of 150 pounds and upwards, and drawing them looks like this:
https://youtu.be/33LNnyqiQcs?t=120
... meaning, you pretty much draw and immediately release while rupturing your spleen or something. Back then, you wouldn't have any weight-reducing pulley/cam system, and also you didn't have the razor-blade heads seen on modern arrows, that can kill much easier.

And here's the popular culture version:

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #40 on: 06 Sep 2017, 10:04 »
@Blondbraid. I think devs would be happy to consider your complaints. Animating long hair must be a ball-ache, so any excuse not to have to do it would be welcome.
That's true, and most video game characters actually do have practical haircuts, but you'd think real-life actresses would also prefer doing action scenes without getting hair caught in their eyes.

To expand on my own rant:
Typically in popular culture, bows are considered the weapon of choice for the lean, agile types, and predominantly women. In reality, a bow of the kind used in medieval warfaring could have a draw weight of 150 pounds and upwards, and drawing them looks like this:
https://youtu.be/33LNnyqiQcs?t=120
... meaning, you pretty much draw and immediately release while rupturing your spleen or something. Back then, you wouldn't have any weight-reducing pulley/cam system, and also you didn't have the razor-blade heads seen on modern arrows, that can kill much easier.

I think the scriptwriter originally wrote a lengthy scene where Ygritte points a gun against Jon, but then someone mentioned that they don't have guns in medieval fantasy settings,
so instead they just switched the gun for a bow, because they are basically the same thing amirite? (roll)

I actually saw a pretty good video on what sort of weapons would be suited for smaller and thinner persons:

Most movies show women and elves use bows as you mentioned, while in reality polearms and two-handed swords would be a much better way for a small person to compensate for their size. I think halberds are sadly underappreciated weapons in movies and video games, only the evil guards at the villain's castle are allowed to use them. I don't know how true it is, but I once read an analysis that claimed that the reason fiction portrays swords and bows as heroic weapons and halberds and crossbows as the go-to weapons for evil medieval henchmen is that swords and bows were the weapons of the nobility, and knights spent years learning to use them, while crossbows could be used by anyone with a little training, mostly low-born and peasants. The halberd was a weapon that allowed foot people to effectively fight riders on horseback, making it a weapon often used against knights and cavalry.

While I'm at this train of thought, as a non-native English speaker I find it interesting that words like chivalrous and noble are describing good traits, while the word villain originally meant farmhand, which tells a lot on how medieval writers saw the world and society.

One thing that bothers me with fantasy is the over-reliance on blood ties, nearly all fantasy heroes are secretly of royal blood or the heir of someone important. In some cases it's almost ridiculous how many of the characters in a story are secretly a princess, a lost king, the last member of a noble line etcetera. It's actually hard for me to come up with a fantasy story where the protagonist isn't secretly a crown prince! (ok, Frodo and Sam isn't royalty but pretty much everyone else who travels with them is.)

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #41 on: 06 Sep 2017, 12:12 »
In fantasy settings, where you have magic and creatures that defy all sorts of laws of physics and biology, stuff like hair styles, cold resistance and proper weapon usage seem like really trivial things to me. By the way, nords in Skyrim have a Resist Frost trait, that's 50% frost resistance :)

Anyway, I have a hard time taking any fantasy or supernatural setting very seriously, they're always going to be a little bit silly and ridiculous and that's fine. Immersion is a good thing, but it's not really that important to me, things can still be interesting and entertaining even when I'm not fully submerged into them.

What usually puts me off is blatant inconsistency, either in visual style, writing, logic etc.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #42 on: 06 Sep 2017, 14:12 »
Quote
Anyway, I have a hard time taking any fantasy or supernatural setting very seriously, they're always going to be a little bit silly and ridiculous and that's fine.
That's a case where Rule of Cool applies 8-)

Another gimmick specific to adventure games : when a non-playable character reacts to a monologue of the hero. Like all 4th wall breaking jokes, it can be funny but works against immersion. Even if the lips of our hero are moving every time he has an idea or describes something, players assume that he's not actually talking. People don't wander around speaking aloud. Monologues are just a way for the author to communicate thoughts.
« Last Edit: 06 Sep 2017, 14:28 by Creamy »
 

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #43 on: 07 Sep 2017, 02:20 »
Another gimmick specific to adventure games : when a non-playable character reacts to a monologue of the hero.

Urgh! I wince whenever that "joke" is used in a game. It's been done to death, and should be left to rest in peace.

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #44 on: 07 Sep 2017, 03:09 »
One thing that breaks my immersion is something that happens in martial arts combat.

Whenever a character connects on a really good hit, the other character always does a flip or a spin on their way to the ground.  Other non-martial-arts fights in the same work will not feature this.  It's as if karate kicks always have a little English to them.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #45 on: 07 Sep 2017, 08:19 »
In fantasy settings, where you have magic and creatures that defy all sorts of laws of physics and biology, stuff like hair styles, cold resistance and proper weapon usage seem like really trivial things to me. By the way, nords in Skyrim have a Resist Frost trait, that's 50% frost resistance :)

Anyway, I have a hard time taking any fantasy or supernatural setting very seriously, they're always going to be a little bit silly and ridiculous and that's fine. Immersion is a good thing, but it's not really that important to me, things can still be interesting and entertaining even when I'm not fully submerged into them.

What usually puts me off is blatant inconsistency, either in visual style, writing, logic etc.

Well, there's this thing called internal logic. If magic or dragons exist that's fine with me; I'm aware of the contract you sign when watching/reading Fantasy. However, someone falling into a near-frozen lake in the middle of the winter with no heat source around... if that person doesn't show signs of instant hypothermia I'm not *feeling* that scene. There's no immersion.

Oh and I think both Blondebraid's and my own rants were originally about depictions of the middle ages, not necessarily fantasy, although, granted, a GoT scene was used as an example in my case.


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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #46 on: 07 Sep 2017, 12:01 »
People don't wander around speaking aloud. Monologues are just a way for the author to communicate thoughts.
Urgh! I wince whenever that "joke" is used in a game. It's been done to death, and should be left to rest in peace.
But what if you're playing as someone who would wander around speaking aloud?
Wouldn't it make sense to point out how everyone sees that character as a weirdo?

While the joke has been done to death, I don't think the joke has been done to death within a single game. So what if everyone constantly notices your character talking to themselves? Perhaps even having some people responding to you, thinking that you're talking to them?

A new take on an old joke perhaps? :-\

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #47 on: 07 Sep 2017, 12:13 »
Another gimmick specific to adventure games : when a non-playable character reacts to a monologue of the hero. Like all 4th wall breaking jokes, it can be funny but works against immersion. Even if the lips of our hero are moving every time he has an idea or describes something, players assume that he's not actually talking. People don't wander around speaking aloud. Monologues are just a way for the author to communicate thoughts.

I just remembered there is an NPC reacting to main character's monologue in the very beginning of Barn Runner 1, made for parody effect, which works very well introducing the wacky hero of the series :).
« Last Edit: 07 Sep 2017, 12:15 by Crimson Wizard »

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #48 on: 07 Sep 2017, 13:20 »
I don't know why people get upset at protagonists talking aloud to themselves or the player - it was good enough for Shakespeare. For a naturalistic game, an internal monologue is a much better idea. But I can't see why you'd be irritated by a Guybrush Threepwood soliloquy.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #49 on: 07 Sep 2017, 14:29 »
I don't know why people get upset at protagonists talking aloud to themselves or the player - it was good enough for Shakespeare. For a naturalistic game, an internal monologue is a much better idea. But I can't see why you'd be irritated by a Guybrush Threepwood soliloquy.

I think it was NPCs reacting to hearing the soliloquy that was the point, not the character talking to the player. I actually love the character talking to me. Makes him or her seem more like a buddy. A "we're in this together" kinda relationship.

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #50 on: 07 Sep 2017, 22:54 »
Quote
But what if you're playing as someone who would wander around speaking aloud?
Wouldn't it make sense to point out how everyone sees that character as a weirdo?

While the joke has been done to death, I don't think the joke has been done to death within a single game. So what if everyone constantly notices your character talking to themselves? Perhaps even having some people responding to you, thinking that you're talking to them?

A new take on an old joke perhaps? :-\
The Bum has a talking sock, but people usually don't seem to hear it. A game where no thought goes unnoticed, that could be funny.

Quote
I think it was NPCs reacting to hearing the soliloquy that was the point, not the character talking to the player. I actually love the character talking to me. Makes him or her seem more like a buddy. A "we're in this together" kinda relationship.
Exactly. I love an aside by Guybrush Threepwood, George Stobbart or Nelly Cootalot.
« Last Edit: 08 Sep 2017, 00:08 by Creamy »
 

Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #51 on: 15 Sep 2017, 21:51 »
One other thing which breaks my immersion is when you see someone die, and the camera cuts to their tombstone standing just outside their estate. Instead of being sad I just can't help but think about all the bureaucracy and paperwork their loved ones have to go through to get a permit to bury someone outside of a graveyard or dedicated crypt.

Not to mention that for hundreds of years, being buried in soil that wan't blessed by the church was considered a horrible fate among Christians, (criminals were often punished after their death by not being allowed to be buried in a cemetery), so this is extra weird when you see this in movies set in a historical period. But it's not just in Christianity, nearly all cultures that aren't nomads have special burial grounds so that you have all dead relatives gathered in one place to bring flowers and offerings and so forth. Then there is the fact that if you bury a body in the wrong place you risk having it polluting the groundwater, so there are many practical reasons that you can't just bury a dead loved one wherever you want. (Both my parents work in the archaeological field, so they've pointed this out to me a few times.)

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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #52 on: 16 Sep 2017, 08:18 »
Ignorance is bliss... ;) (laugh)
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Re: What breaks your immersion?
« Reply #53 on: 14 Nov 2017, 20:52 »
One thing that greatly bothers me in movies (and quite a few video games too) is when female action heroes go into battle wearing high heels, and not just in a scenes where say, they were surprised and caught wearing civilian clothes, but the story clearly shows that they were expecting to get into a fight and had every opportunity to ditch the heels, yet they run around in the stupidest shoes they could find. No sane person in real life would ever chose to wear high heels in any situation where they would have to run or climb rough terrain, yet we still keep seeing female agents, assassins and policewomen and other supposedly experienced and professional women run around in high heels on the screen.

This why this is one of my favorite movie scenes of all time:

I want to do exactly what Jack does whenever I see characters supposed to be action heroes run around in high heels! (nod)
We see plenty of action heroines rip their dresses in order to fight, why not remove their high heels while they're at it?