Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 130
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Orc in the Playground
     
    tbok1992's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2012

    Default Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    I aak this question inspired by the "Are we in the new 90s" comics thread, because it seems to me that we are in the gaming equivalent of the 90s Dark Age.

    I mean, think about it, the medium has been elevated in popular prestige due to various games that are both artistic and financial successes and independent creators are more prominenent and successful than ever.

    But at the same time the market is dominated by "Edgy" material following in the footsteps of a couple of characters/games, with ugly asthetics given a glossy coat of paint and a profound lack of creativity compared to the shallower but substantially more creative and fun games of yore, with most of the exceptions being from the independent creators and characters created before the era

    All of this driven by 14-year-olds who think that any game with colors beyond brown or grey or a rating below an M is "kiddy" or "ghey" (Which I think was the principal reason for the demise of 3d Platformers, but I digress).

    And I ask, could any games like, say, Actraiser, Demon's Crest, or Jet Force Gemeni be made outside of the indie scene? I don't think it could be so anymore because of how invested the industry is in grim 'n gritty.

    Of course part of this could be deep personal bias (For example, I would compare what Microsoft let happen to Rare to crucifying my childhood and then setting it on fire while it was screaming "Forgive them father, for they know not what they do"). But I want to ask the rest of the forums, does Gaming need its own Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo, works that advocate bringing the lightearted, weird yet creative parts of earlier eras with the good/smarter parts of the later ones?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Tiki Snakes's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Crystal Wasteland

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    No, I don't think so
    I think gaming is having no such problems..

    Also, two thoughts; Firstly, I can't help but think that it's been a solid downhill slide for Rare since shortly after releasing Goldeneye on the N64, with half their team leaving part way through making the flawed masterpiece Perfect Dark.

    Secondly, Demon's Crest as an example of a non-gritty game of yore? Heh.

    So, yeah. As for more mainstream examples, Darksiders 1 + 2 remind me of Demon's Crest (and both have very varied and vibrant colour palettes).
    Enslaved had a wonderfully lush, overgrown take on the post apocalyptic landscape coupled with an intruiging version of the Journey to the West.

    I could probably think of more examples, but my brain is pretty fried at this point so that will have to do you.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Friv's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    The problem facing video games is much closer to the problem facing Hollywood than it is to the problem that comics had in the 90s.

    Grim and gritty isn't really happening outside of the shooter genre. The top tenbest-sellers of December 2011 included Mario Kart, another Mario game, a dancing game, a football game, a basketball game, and then two shooters, Assassin's Creed (which is kind of gritty I guess but I mostly find goofy) and Skyrim. Oh, and Batman.

    The big problem that games have these days is that a AAA release costs an obscene amount of money to make, and people have never liked taking risks with obscene amounts of money because if your gamble doesn't pay off you go out of business. So the indie market thrives with new ideas and interesting approaches, because it doesn't cost them much, and the main market thrives with clones and sequels, because they sell well. Just like Hollywood.
    Patchwork Magisters - Volume III is now available! You know, if you like that sort of thing.

    Which you do.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tail of the Bellcurve
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Honestly I suspect 3D platformers haven't been doing so hot because they're really annoying to play for a lot of us. While I can use parallax to judge the distance of a jump, I'd rather not have to.

    Let us not forget that the nineties gave us Doom, Quake, Unreal, Diablo, and quite a few other titles not noted for their cheerful themes.

    And can we stop with the reflexive hating of fourteen year olds? Given the demographics of gamers anymore, it can't just be them driving the trends. And even if it was, so what? Their taste is just as valid as anybody else's, and pretending otherwise is pretentious. The only place it is writ that games should be like they were in the nineties in the nostalgic blogs of people who were fourteen in the nineties.

    (By all means criticize the fourteen year olds being horrible racist misogynist homophobic jerks though.)

    'Cides which, in the last twelve months major companies have released Rayman Origins, Saint's Row III, and Anno 2070 to name but a few. Not exactly a monotone of darkness'n'grit.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Orc in the Playground
     
    tbok1992's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2012

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Ah. Perhaps I have been watching too much Moviebob as of late.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tiki Snakes View Post
    Secondly, Demon's Crest as an example of a non-gritty game of yore? Heh.
    While I would say it is plenty dark and grim, I think it's too fantastical to be called Gritty. When I think gritty fantasy I think Warhammer, not so much Infernum*.

    *Which is a D20 RPG set in hell that I think really needs more love setting-wise, though I will admit the mechanics are wonky.
    Last edited by tbok1992; 2012-11-16 at 10:38 PM.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Eakin's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    You really want to be comic books? I can't think of a medium LESS constrained it's past than video games, not least because there are all sorts of constraints that keep us from looking back there at all.

    There are so many A-level (but not AAA level) studios out there pumping out high quality games. You talk about what I assume are shooters of the CoD variety but what about franchises like Assassins Creed or Demon/Dark Souls? They have pretty solid studio backing but don't seem to fall into the same category. Just dig a little deeper and you'll find a richer variety of games than in any point in the past.

    That doesn't even begin to touch on the indie scene which does exactly what you're calling for, maybe to their own detriment some of the time.

    Also, Banjo-Kazooie 1+2 were Rare's crowning achievement, you heretic
    Proof-reading is totally unnecessary in the digital age now that we have spell cheque.

    Pony thread's official Element of Youtube

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ravens_cry's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    We are still having trouble telling a truly interactive story. I don't think we have even had our Watchmen or Dark Knight Returns yet, not really.
    Heck, we have a hard enough time with the "cutscene+'interactive' sequence+cutscene" model. Even more story based games like Assassins Creed often still fail on so many levels as stories.
    Last edited by Ravens_cry; 2012-11-16 at 11:45 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calanon View Post
    Raven_Cry's comments often have the effects of a +5 Tome of Understanding

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GolemsVoice's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Germany
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    The oft reviled "games for 14 year old kids", if they even exist, are more or less three (Series of) games. CoD, Battlefield and Halo, which, as far as I know, aren't really BAD games per se, too, at least as far as their multiplayer is concerned, which is what these games are about.

    That's three games out of how many that are currently popular? Even if we only take the AAA titles of major publishers they're a niche.
    Last edited by GolemsVoice; 2012-11-17 at 02:38 AM.
    Si non confectus, non reficiat.

    The beautiful girl is courtesy of Serpentine
    My S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Call of Pripjat Let's Play! Please give it a read, more than one constant reader would be nice!

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Forum Explorer's Avatar

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravens_cry View Post
    We are still having trouble telling a truly interactive story. I don't think we have even had our Watchmen or Dark Knight Returns yet, not really.
    Heck, we have a hard enough time with the "cutscene+'interactive' sequence+cutscene" model. Even more story based games like Assassins Creed often still fail on so many levels as stories.
    This is a very odd line. I mean those two, while amazing movies, are hardly interactive. And there have been plenty of games that I've found much more interesting story wise then either of those movies. (FF6 for example)
    In order to understand recursion you must first understand recursion.


    Thanks to Elder Tsofu for my new Lancer Avatar

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    I don't even know any of the mentioned games and comics!

    Are they examples of good works or bad works, and if so, why?

    What do you want to see?
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.
    Ancient Lands - PF/d20 Sword & Sorcery campaign setting

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Cespenar's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2007

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    As a recent example, I think Spec Ops: The Line might be Watchmen to the classic "dudebro" FPSs out there, if we're talking about genre subversion.
    Last edited by Cespenar; 2012-11-17 at 05:07 AM.
    PbP Game Statistics:
    Spoiler
    Show
    (Updated 19.07.13)
    Games Joined: 53
    Games Dead: 50
    Games Successfully Finished: 0
    Partially Finished/TPK'd: 1


  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Brother Oni's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Cippa's River Meadow
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravens_cry View Post
    We are still having trouble telling a truly interactive story. I don't think we have even had our Watchmen or Dark Knight Returns yet, not really.
    Heck, we have a hard enough time with the "cutscene+'interactive' sequence+cutscene" model. Even more story based games like Assassins Creed often still fail on so many levels as stories.
    In my opinion, Heavy Rain comes close and the developers Quantic Dream are still going (new game out next year), so we may hit that interactive story mark.

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tail of the Bellcurve
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Oni View Post
    In my opinion, Heavy Rain comes close and the developers Quantic Dream are still going (new game out next year), so we may hit that interactive story mark.
    I'm beginning to suspect the 'interactive story' thing people make such a deal of is a sort of Questing Beast. It's something a lot of people chase, because it sounds good, but catching it is impossible, and won't bring about all the wonderful things people promised.

    Look, people have been telling stories for approximately as long as there have been people. If offering your audience a choice in outcome was the greatest narrative invention since Gilgamesh invented the bromance, you'd think it would have shown up and become prominent by now. All you need is a story and the question 'does A or B happen?' All our technologicaly frippery just adds flashing lights to appeal to our monkey brains.

    It's something I think the gaming press likes to haul out because it's one area where games genuinely do something that TV and movies don't, and as we all know those are the only other forms of storytelling that matter or have ever existed. For most of the history of people telling stories, videogame style interactions have been possible. So far as I'm aware, they haven't been done. Either people were just that stupid for ten thousand years, or it doesn't actually make things better.

    What makes it appealing in games I suspect is that it plays into the control fantasy they offer.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ravens_cry's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Forum Explorer View Post
    This is a very odd line. I mean those two, while amazing movies, are hardly interactive. And there have been plenty of games that I've found much more interesting story wise then either of those movies. (FF6 for example)
    I was referring not to films but to the two comic books that kicked off the Iron (or Dark) Age of comics.
    Kingdom Come was a deconstruction of the result of this deconstruction.
    Last edited by Ravens_cry; 2012-11-17 at 10:12 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calanon View Post
    Raven_Cry's comments often have the effects of a +5 Tome of Understanding

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    I'm beginning to suspect the 'interactive story' thing people make such a deal of is a sort of Questing Beast. It's something a lot of people chase, because it sounds good, but catching it is impossible, and won't bring about all the wonderful things people promised.

    Look, people have been telling stories for approximately as long as there have been people. If offering your audience a choice in outcome was the greatest narrative invention since Gilgamesh invented the bromance, you'd think it would have shown up and become prominent by now. All you need is a story and the question 'does A or B happen?' All our technologicaly frippery just adds flashing lights to appeal to our monkey brains.
    I think the best case I've seen so far is Mass Effect 2. You decide who lives or dies with good arguments for either side and both choices comming with significant downsides, if not in gameplay then at least in narrative. It doesn't affect how the other 90% of the games turn out, but you still get to consider the arguments for and against certain descisions, knowing that even if you're right, there will be negative repercussions.
    And that's what got people so freaked out about Mass Effect 3, which basically said "yeah, you know what? Forget about this whole descisions and consequences stuff. Let's ignore all descisions you've made and lets have an Ending that overrides everything". People got seriously pissed about that, because the series has always told them that there will be consequences and also shown them many of these consequences later in the games, making them relieved that they did the right thing or regret a terrible mistake. You still get to fight all the same enemies in all the same places, but player fill the oppinions and views of the protagonist with their own, which is why they care about it.
    It's the same thing as with Half-Life much much earlier. Everyone loves Gordon Freeman because every player decides when he is shocked, angry, scared, badass, happy, and so on, simply by not having the game doing it. "Commander Shepard pulls a gun and shots the mercenary in the head." is something that just happens. But it could be "Commander Shepard shots the mercenary to avenge the people he murdered" or "Commander Shapard shots the mercenary because there is no way to prevent him from murdering more people" or "Commander Shepard shots the mercenary because he isn't interested in talking and just wants to get to the next room", or "Commander Shepard shots the mercenary because he dared making insulting remarks at him". The game doesn't have to go into any of these, all it needs is the option "if you want to, you can shot him or keep talking".
    Changing the events of a game isn't that important. It's filling out the personalty of the characters and giving meaning to the events is. And it's much easier to do than designing 30 different plot branches.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.
    Ancient Lands - PF/d20 Sword & Sorcery campaign setting

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Closet_Skeleton's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Ēast Seaxna rīc
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    I find it hard to criticise modern 14 year olds for ruining gaming when I was less than 14 during the golden age before everything was ruined.

    The gaming population and the developers are only ageing. Maybe that's the real problem.
    "that nighted, penguin-fringed abyss" - At The Mountains of Madness, H.P. Lovecraft

    When a man decides another's future behind his back, it is a conspiracy. When a god does it, it's destiny.


  17. - Top - End - #17
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Back then there was as much crap as there is today. We just remember the small number of gems we played more than once or twice before discarding them.

    And people still go crazy for Mario. How are those games not as bland and repetitive as any generic multiplayer shoter?
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.
    Ancient Lands - PF/d20 Sword & Sorcery campaign setting

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ravens_cry's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Mario had flow. It's hard to explain, but it's similar to the feeling of tapping a beat. . Doom can also feel at way, as could the early Sonic the Hedgehog's. Getting those rings, making that jump, shooting that zombie marine, you know the feeling.
    Tetris can have a very similar feel, especially once the pace picks up.
    It's like making music with your hands. It's like running.
    Everything is in synch, the controls and you are one, there is no controls, you are the game.
    I think the problem now is not the amount of crap, Sturgeon's Law was, if anything more in-effect back then, but that was more much room to experiment on a commercial level. You didn't need a huge group to make a great game, you needed a few people, or even one, with skill and passion.
    In some ways, we are seeing a resurgence of that. Modern PC are super powerful and more and more modern development tools and middle ware are potentially available to the average user.
    But in other ways, we are farther away than ever.
    Last edited by Ravens_cry; 2012-11-17 at 11:04 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calanon View Post
    Raven_Cry's comments often have the effects of a +5 Tome of Understanding

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Yora's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Germany

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    But you could have replaced mario with a green circle and it wouldn't have changed a thing. Yet people refer to it as one of the most popular game characters. That's what amazes me.
    Spriggan's Den - Thoughts on RPGs and some of my personal creations.
    Ancient Lands - PF/d20 Sword & Sorcery campaign setting

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ravens_cry's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    But you could have replaced mario with a green circle and it wouldn't have changed a thing. Yet people refer to it as one of the most popular game characters. That's what amazes me.
    The aesthetic would have changed, and that isn't nothing.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calanon View Post
    Raven_Cry's comments often have the effects of a +5 Tome of Understanding

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Zevox's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    But you could have replaced mario with a green circle and it wouldn't have changed a thing. Yet people refer to it as one of the most popular game characters. That's what amazes me.
    Mario is a popular game character because his games are popular (and numerous). As a character himself about all he has going for him is a memorable design, but with that, the fact that his games go all the way back to the initial revival of gaming after the big crash, and just people enjoying his games so much, he managed to become iconic of gaming in general. I doubt very much that you'll find anyone praising him for his personality or character development, of which he has basically none, but that's never been the point of him or his games anyway.

    Zevox
    Toph Pony avatar by Dirtytabs. Thanks!

    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty, I read them openly. When I became a man, I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up." -C.S. Lewis

    "We each decide our own sense of right and wrong. The rest, I leave to my sword." - Yuri Lowell, Tales of Vesperia

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Banned
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by warty goblin View Post
    I'm beginning to suspect the 'interactive story' thing people make such a deal of is a sort of Questing Beast. It's something a lot of people chase, because it sounds good, but catching it is impossible, and won't bring about all the wonderful things people promised.
    There appears to be a significant selection of tabletop RPGs where it already has happened, and is explicitly one of the main purposes of play.
    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    Changing the events of a game isn't that important. It's filling out the personalty of the characters and giving meaning to the events is. And it's much easier to do than designing 30 different plot branches.
    Except that the only way that you convey real information about a character's personality is by giving them choices, with a moral/ethical dimension that induces psychological ambivalence on their part, because they know they could have significant repercussions. If you combine this with a fixed plot, this either implies those choices are really one-sided (broken drama) don't have real consequences (broken causality) are effectively made for the player (broken immersion) or don't have anything to do with the main sequence of events (broken protagonism.)
    Last edited by Carry2; 2012-11-17 at 01:00 PM.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GolemsVoice's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Germany
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Or you simply make the choices have consequences that don't change the big picture, but plenty of stuff that goes around beyond that? I mean, every game on the computer has to have a certain amount of fixed plot, unless you want to a) have a great amount of story threads, most of which will, for any given game, never see play (expensive, takes disc space and developer time/money) or b) restrict player choice to a managable level.

    What you seem to want it, just as you said in your post, a tabletop RPG, where a real human DM can react anytime and to anything that happens.
    Si non confectus, non reficiat.

    The beautiful girl is courtesy of Serpentine
    My S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Call of Pripjat Let's Play! Please give it a read, more than one constant reader would be nice!

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Banned
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by GolemsVoice View Post
    What you seem to want it, just as you said in your post, a tabletop RPG, where a real human DM can react anytime and to anything that happens.
    I'm aware of the practical difficulties with implementing this kind of story-generation in a game with largely pre-generated content. I just kind of wish that (A) games companies would stop making promises they can't keep about their narratives, and (B) there was more R&D into dynamic/procedural content that the player can affect.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ravens_cry's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2008

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    I bet we'd have it a lot closer now if we didn't use voice actors as much.
    Text-to-speech is nowhere near ready to handle acting.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calanon View Post
    Raven_Cry's comments often have the effects of a +5 Tome of Understanding

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tail of the Bellcurve
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    I think the best case I've seen so far is Mass Effect 2. You decide who lives or dies with good arguments for either side and both choices comming with significant downsides, if not in gameplay then at least in narrative. It doesn't affect how the other 90% of the games turn out, but you still get to consider the arguments for and against certain descisions, knowing that even if you're right, there will be negative repercussions.
    And that's what got people so freaked out about Mass Effect 3, which basically said "yeah, you know what? Forget about this whole descisions and consequences stuff. Let's ignore all descisions you've made and lets have an Ending that overrides everything". People got seriously pissed about that, because the series has always told them that there will be consequences and also shown them many of these consequences later in the games, making them relieved that they did the right thing or regret a terrible mistake. You still get to fight all the same enemies in all the same places, but player fill the oppinions and views of the protagonist with their own, which is why they care about it.
    It's the same thing as with Half-Life much much earlier. Everyone loves Gordon Freeman because every player decides when he is shocked, angry, scared, badass, happy, and so on, simply by not having the game doing it. "Commander Shepard pulls a gun and shots the mercenary in the head." is something that just happens. But it could be "Commander Shepard shots the mercenary to avenge the people he murdered" or "Commander Shapard shots the mercenary because there is no way to prevent him from murdering more people" or "Commander Shepard shots the mercenary because he isn't interested in talking and just wants to get to the next room", or "Commander Shepard shots the mercenary because he dared making insulting remarks at him". The game doesn't have to go into any of these, all it needs is the option "if you want to, you can shot him or keep talking".
    Changing the events of a game isn't that important. It's filling out the personalty of the characters and giving meaning to the events is. And it's much easier to do than designing 30 different plot branches.
    The thing is when you boil away the fun of making the decision (and making the decision is fun, I'm not arguing that) it doesn't make the characters or story better so far as I can tell.

    Take your example of shooting or not shooting a bunch of bandits. The game has no idea why I did or did not do something, which means it cannot react in a reasonable, character-driven way to that action. It just knows I did or did not shoot the bandits. By leaving me to fill in the details of why in my head, it isn't doing a better job of telling a story, it's actively failing to tell one.

    Same thing with Gordon Freeman. He's not a great character because he's a blank slate, because he isn't really a character. He's a set of actions stripped of context and meaning by the refusal of Valve to give him a personality. It makes him awesome to play as, because there isn't any of that pesky character to get in the way of beating aliens with crowbars, but that's a very different thing than being a good character or telling a good story.

    Generously, I guess it could be said to be doing the whole 'central character is an enigma' thing, but if it is, it does a poor job of it. To do that well you'd need support in the game/text for different interpretations of why they do something, and I just don't see that in games.

    Spec Ops' multiple endings actually are could be the basis of an argument for choice improving a story, since those choices are firmly in the territory of character interpretation. Spec Ops could be the basis for a lot of things, none of which I suspect are going to be taken up by gaming in any significant way. I suspect most people prefer deciding how to succeed, rather than whether they think the main character has any shot at redemption.
    Happiness yesterday and happiness tomorrow, but never today... It can't be because it's only an illusion after all, and illusions only look real from a distance. We're over, my dreamy lost love, over, and that's the best thing of all, because it's the only thing that makes it good.

    George RR Martin, Dying of the Light, 1977.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Tengu_temp's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Poland
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    As long as the publishers will think that creating mediocre modern FPS games is the most surefire way to make money, the trend of these games oversaturating the market will continue.

    Writing a comic book is much cheaper than creating a video game. The days of a single small game written by just a few visionaries changing the face of the whole industry are long gone. To change it, two things need to happen:

    1. Mediocre Modern Warfare knockoffs must stop giving sure income.
    2. More creative titles must start giving sure income.

    Kickstarter can help with the second point. A miracle can help with the first.

    Those are indie games. We're talking AAA titles here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cespenar View Post
    As a recent example, I think Spec Ops: The Line might be Watchmen to the classic "dudebro" FPSs out there, if we're talking about genre subversion.
    There's a big difference though - Watchmen wasn't a subversion of the dark age of comic books, it kickstarted the dark age by creating many imitators who completely missed the point of the original work.
    Last edited by Tengu_temp; 2012-11-18 at 04:55 PM.

    Siela Tempo by the talented Kasanip. Tengu by myself.
    Super Robot Wars Unification - large-scale mecha game, now running, always recruiting!
    Spoiler
    Show





  28. - Top - End - #28
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Man on Fire's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2012

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    but kingdom come is a video game, I'm not sure OP what are you talking about.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    I don't buy this premise at all. What are some big AAA titles from gaming history? Super Mario Bros? How many Super Mario games did they make, each with similar mechanics? Is that so different from the CoD or Halo franchises? And at the same time that Nintendo made a new Mario game every few years, there were hundreds of other side scrolling platformers coming out.

    I don't feel like going through the RTS, MMO and RPG genres to point out how many sequels, franchises and copycat games have plagued each of them. But I strongly feel that the current game situation isn't particularly different than it was when I was a kid, it just focuses on different genres.

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Tengu_temp's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Poland
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Where is gaming's Kingdom Come or Flex Mentallo?

    The difference is the amount of work and money necessary to make a game. 25 years ago a single programmer could create a world best-seller. These days? An indie game, yes, but a Triple A title requires millions of dollars and a team of dozens.

    And I'd rather see dozens of Mario clones or Final Fantasy 7 clones than Call of Duty clones. The former could at least have some merit and idea on their own, while most modern FPSes are almost indistinguishable from each other, with no sense of fun or invention.

    Quote Originally Posted by Man on Fire View Post
    but kingdom come is a video game, I'm not sure OP what are you talking about.
    Be enlightened.

    Siela Tempo by the talented Kasanip. Tengu by myself.
    Super Robot Wars Unification - large-scale mecha game, now running, always recruiting!
    Spoiler
    Show





Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •