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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    I vehemently dislike the recent trend of zero-gameplay story games.

    Some people like them. To me, they're interactive picture books, and it's a lot less misleading if they were labeled as such.
    Are you referring to something besides visual novels? When I hear "zero-gameplay story games" that's what my mind jumps to, and they ARE usually labelled as just "visual novels?"
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  2. - Top - End - #122
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    yeah thats kind of another reason why I play indie games as well: they're often obscure and not well known, so there is no reason to bother with checking for guides in the first place, giving another measure of exploration and surprise to playing them. but at the same time, for more well known games it is a bit annoying for the guides to be less usable, but at the same time, I find it encourages me to only go for small bits information I really need so as to minimize my need to be guided. part of the fun of games is supposed to be figuring them out after all, so from a certain perspective while its more annoying and less convenient when its really needed, it kind of encourages you to be better at actually playing the game rather than relying on the guide. guides should be last resort anyways.

    as for visual novels, yeah, they're bad as games. they're good things to watch in lets plays though. why spend the money when you can experience the railroad for free?
    Last edited by Lord Raziere; 2019-06-17 at 06:03 PM.
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  3. - Top - End - #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by rynjin View Post
    this segment doesn't make a ton of sense to me. Most fps games have the opposite issue, and it's what has plagued the genre for years (story heavy shooters tend to be third person). But more than that, it implies the half-life games are emblematic of this issue, when the series were highly influential and polished fps games for their time that defined the genre for years afterward, as well as being praised for their story (which is told almost entirely through environmental storytelling anyway).

    Weird sentence, that.
    Gordon, am I glad you are here! Remember Dario? No? Well, he is the guy who personally soiled himself at Black Mesa during the HECU attack and you saw him for three seconds, and now the three of us will be trapped together in this small room while we talk plot in an unskippable manner. By the plot, I mean recycling the same conversation that swoons over how manly and heroic you are and how a rebel settlement in former Soviet Union needs your help, with some sciency words inbetween. Amuse yourself by throwing lab equipment all over the place and hopping like a hamster on meth because this is really boring. Then get into a car and drive for 10 minutes to the combat setpiece where you will quickly find that half of your weaponry fires rubber gun pellets and the other half has exactly three ammo spawns in the entire game. To remedy this, please use this physics gimmick to endlessly bludgeon people with trash, which never gets old at all. We will abandon the long awaited sequel when we realize all the franchise has become in 2004 was a glorified vehicle for a Source Engine demonstration, and we are no longer in that business.
    Last edited by Winthur; 2019-06-17 at 06:17 PM.
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  4. - Top - End - #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by Archpaladin Zousha View Post
    Are you referring to something besides visual novels? When I hear "zero-gameplay story games" that's what my mind jumps to, and they ARE usually labelled as just "visual novels?"
    Nah, there's a whole slew of "interactive fiction" games that effectively have you hold down a button to move in order to toggle a message or some cutscene.

    There are good versions of these kinds of games, like Telltale games or Life is Strange, but there are a bunch of indie games that feel like they just didn't want to put much effort on the "game" side of things.
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  5. - Top - End - #125
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gnoman View Post
    Let me ask you a simple question.


    Have you ever played the original Legend Of Zelda? The only thing that BotW does that wasn't first done there (other than the massive amounts of expository text and cutscenes, which the NES couldn't handle) was breakable weapons (which BOTW has because the developers didn't want you to find most treasures useless).
    No - as I mentioned in my original post about this, aside from Breath of the Wild the only two main-series Zeldas that I haven't played are the first two, as I've never felt like digging quite that far back (particularly since I enjoy the 2D Zeldas less than the 3D ones already). Though I also think I have to challenge you on that, as I feel pretty confident that there's no way the original game had things like:

    - The stamina meter limiting fairly basic movement options.
    - The level of inventory bloat.
    - The weird cooking system which contributes to said inventory bloat (alongside the breakable weapons you mentioned, which are definitely on my list of "things I don't like," for the record).
    - Environmental effects like cold temperatures at high altitudes making it harder to explore places without the right cooking recipes to get protection from them.

    Just to name the few that come immediately to mind, all examples of the things I was referring to when I said that seeing the gameplay videos made me go "oh hell, no." Plus of course it's obviously impossible that a game that old even comes close to the excessive size of the game's map.
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  6. - Top - End - #126
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    It's true, the first game featured up to MULTIPLE!!! screens which did not feature a dungeon entrance or important plot point. As though the developers were attempting to convey a large open world, but were faced with the limitations of a graphics quality slightly higher than a cubist painter.

    On the other hand if you're not an open world fan, then hey, don't play it.
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  7. - Top - End - #127
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triaxx View Post
    It's true, the first game featured up to MULTIPLE!!! screens which did not feature a dungeon entrance or important plot point. As though the developers were attempting to convey a large open world, but were faced with the limitations of a graphics quality slightly higher than a cubist painter.

    On the other hand if you're not an open world fan, then hey, don't play it.
    You didn't actually pay attention to what I said, did you? Because that remark has zero relevance to any of it. Especially that last, which describes precisely what I've done.
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    "We each decide our own sense of right and wrong. The rest, I leave to my sword." - Yuri Lowell, Tales of Vesperia

  8. - Top - End - #128
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    Quote Originally Posted by Winthur View Post
    Gordon, am I glad you are here! Remember Dario? No? Well, he is the guy who personally soiled himself at Black Mesa during the HECU attack and you saw him for three seconds, and now the three of us will be trapped together in this small room while we talk plot in an unskippable manner. By the plot, I mean recycling the same conversation that swoons over how manly and heroic you are and how a rebel settlement in former Soviet Union needs your help, with some sciency words inbetween. Amuse yourself by throwing lab equipment all over the place and hopping like a hamster on meth because this is really boring. Then get into a car and drive for 10 minutes to the combat setpiece where you will quickly find that half of your weaponry fires rubber gun pellets and the other half has exactly three ammo spawns in the entire game. To remedy this, please use this physics gimmick to endlessly bludgeon people with trash, which never gets old at all. We will abandon the long awaited sequel when we realize all the franchise has become in 2004 was a glorified vehicle for a Source Engine demonstration, and we are no longer in that business.
    Breaking news: A game a decade and a half old and that pioneered a generation of games hasn't aged well.

    More at 11.
    Last edited by Rynjin; 2019-06-17 at 07:39 PM.

  9. - Top - End - #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rynjin View Post
    Breaking news: A game a decade and a half old and that pioneered a generation of games hasn't aged well.

    More at 11.
    It's not that Half-Life 2 feels dated now; frankly it felt painfully mediocre when I played it, sometime in the year or so after The Orange Box came out. The shooting was distinctly below par, the level design sometimes dragged on for absolute eternities, the gravity gun was a pretty shallow gimmick at the end of the day, and most of the enemies simply weren't very fun to fight. And the whole 'let's lock the player in a room with talking people and nothing to do' just sucks. It has sucked in every game ever to do it; all the genuine engagement of a bad custscene, but with absolutely no cinematography or ability to develop the protagonist as anything but a stuffed muppet. I ploughed through base Half-Life 2 and Episode 1, but burned out permanently somewhere early in Episode 2. The basic gameplay mechanics were as mediocre as ever, the prospect of shooting another antlion was simply unbearable, and any feeling that the story was actually going somewhere - or that there was a story at all - had utterly collapsed.

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  10. - Top - End - #130
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rynjin View Post
    This segment doesn't make a ton of sense to me. Most FPS games have the opposite issue, and it's what has plagued the genre for years (story heavy shooters tend to be third person). But more than that, it implies the Half-Life games are emblematic of this issue, when the series were highly influential and polished FPS games for their time that defined the genre for years afterward, as well as being praised for their story (which is told almost entirely through environmental storytelling anyway).
    Both games take a half an hour to get to actual shooting, and the second one in particular has loooooong cutscenes peppered throughout the game (like the sequence in the one safehouse where you get the gravity gun, and the one near the very end of the game where you've been captured) and also has less different guns than way older games like Doom and Quake

    EDIT:
    And to top it all off the plot had nothing to do with the first game aside from a couple of returning characters that were shoehorned in. It's like they wanted to tell this other unrelated story but as an afterthought made the scientist characters Black Mesa affiliated in order to be able to sell it as a sequel

  11. - Top - End - #131
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    Actually I paid quite close attention to what you said and was providing confirmation that in fact the original Zelda game did attempt to emulate an open world.
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  12. - Top - End - #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triaxx View Post
    Actually I paid quite close attention to what you said and was providing confirmation that in fact the original Zelda game did attempt to emulate an open world.
    No, you evidently didn't, because again, that's not relevant to what I've said. In the particular post you replied to, I listed off specific aspects of Breath of the Wild that are among the things that make me believe I wouldn't like the game, none of which are just "the open world" in general. If you were telling me that the original Zelda had a stamina meter limiting your movement options, that would be shocking, but relevant. A general claim that it was going for something akin to an open world isn't. This is because I was challenging Gnoman's assertion that the only thing Breath of the Wild did that the original game didn't was breakable weapons.

    And, while it should be more relevant to Psyren and Gnoman's replies to me than yours, I'll add just to be sure it's clear that my original remarks were about the series transitioning from the style it had from Ocarina of Time through Skyward Sword to the more open-world design. The first game is also irrelevant to that, since no matter what parallels you might see between it and Breath of the Wild or what reasons you want to ascribe to it, that transition very objectively happened, and I was simply voicing my irritation and disappointment with it, as per the purpose of this thread.
    Last edited by Zevox; 2019-06-17 at 10:09 PM.
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    "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

  13. - Top - End - #133
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    Fair enough. I feel as though we're wandering off topic anyway.

    I don't know that I'd call it a gaming trend, as much as a gamer trend that irks me, but gamers complaining about games they either refused to play or genres the don't like in some kind of effort to get others to stop liking them irks me. I mean, neither sports nor racing games hold any interest for me and I generally dislike horror games. But I have no issue with others wanting to enjoy them. But when people go berserk about them it irks me.
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  14. - Top - End - #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rynjin View Post
    Breaking news: A game a decade and a half old and that pioneered a generation of games hasn't aged well.

    More at 11.
    It's certainly held up less well than Doom and Quake

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    Oh, on an unrelated note, I also hate hate HATE any sort of graphics technique that wastes processor time to deliberately make the game look WORSE. Depth of Field and Motion Blur are probably the biggest offenders here

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triaxx View Post
    Fair enough. I feel as though we're wandering off topic anyway.
    Thank you. And I apologize if I got too abrasive there.
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    "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

  17. - Top - End - #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corlindale View Post
    Games with only 1 save file also bug me a lot. Sometimes I want to start over without having to wipe the entire progress from my first game - why is that so difficult to understand? I love Raymand Legends, but that aspect of the game is exceptionally obnoxious. Yes, I know you can manually fiddle with the save files, but that should really not be necessary in this day and age.
    I agree. Personally I hate any game that has ANY restrictions on saving. If the number of save slots has any limit at all other than the amount of free space on the drive, that's a problem. It's also a problem if you can't save to a new save file in the middle of the game. It's problem if the game uses savepoints rather than letting you save whenever you want. And permadeath that can't be toggled off is a BIG problem.

    Permadeath, in particular, ruins so many games that I would have otherwise enjoyed, like Enter the Gungeon, and Wasted.

    It's particularly bad when there's no workarounds, as in the above. It's less bad in something like Dwarf Fortress where the location of the save file is an obvious location that can be copied.

  18. - Top - End - #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rynjin View Post
    Breaking news: A game a decade and a half old and that pioneered a generation of games hasn't aged well.
    Our top story today as the footage from the news chopper indicates that this has been my opinion of Half-Life 2 since release. Outside of the extremely well done visuals and particularly the facial mimicry, as well as some creative environmental setpieces and the physics engine, Half-Life 2 was literally never, at any point, a gripping or inspiring as a game to me. You have also just brought up another gaming trend that irks me, which is the notion that games "age" or "don't age", which is, in most cases, a thought-terminating cliche that shields badly designed games from criticism, is entirely up to the preferences of the individual, and which fosters the notion that you can dismiss most opinions about these older games as nostalgia. You like something old? Take off the rose-tinted glasses, grandpa. You don't like something old? Well you were a mere spermatozoid when it happened. Either way, your opinion is discarded. Quality discussion right here, would take to the floor of the Congress.

    Very few games are an actual, honest-to-goodness, example of a clunky bygone era, and a cutting-edge looking game (for years I kept seeing modern AAA titles that didn't have HL2's attention to detail in terms of animating humans) with modern WASD+mouse controls and many other elements that are easily found in newer games deserves to be scrutinized for being a mediocre gaming experience that it is, especially when you yourself question how can anyone hate HL2 given how influential and polished it was in the first place. Oh, it sure was, and nobody denied it! It was also a really, really boring game and a really, really boring shooter with some of the least satisfying guns ever made. Realistic, gritty depictions of Eastern European backwaters and the vague sense of atmosphere really don't make me like the game any more, as the gameplay makes it all get old quick.

    warty goblin has already dug into the core of how bland and unreplayable HL2 is.
    Last edited by Winthur; 2019-06-17 at 11:38 PM.
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  19. - Top - End - #139
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    Alright, then. Things that irk me.

    Paid DLC that's on disc. Shouldn't have to explain why I think this is bullocks.

    Open worlds. What's over the next hill? Another hill. How fascinating. Honestly, in just about every open world game I've ever played open world seems just to be a code word for a lot of pointless meandering between the actually interesting plot points where the game creators hope you make your own fun because they certainly won't help you. The only exception I can think of is Dark Souls, which technically is an open world. Just one where it actually branches out into very painstakingly orchestrated and weaving levels rather than boring open plains.

    Big explosive colors to disguise the fact the gameplay isn't actually fun. I've noticed a lot of RPGs and action games are doing this now. Numbers will flash up in the air, every ability will cause a big explosion, and after a few levels a fight will look more like a discoball than anything. It's jarring, distracting, and doesn't help the game. I remember Dragon Age: Inquisition and For Honor as being particularly egregious in this. And I actually really like For Honor's combat, but holy crap every second of a 4v4 match is people flashing purple and blue and smoke is rising from their spamable emotes while thunder is striking and it's a visual mess.

    Loot boxes. I never touch the things. But to put it mildly, a buddy of mine is a "whale" and I know for a fact that how much money he spent on a certain game and its loot boxes was part of the reason his wife and he got divorced. Thankfully he's seeking help now. But I honestly, absolutely despise this monetary system for preying on people like my buddy who has some severe mental issues he needs to work through.

    Pre-order culture. Stop doing it. People buying the game before it's released is part of why we keep seeing buggy games get released far before they're ready with a nice profit. And this includes games I like (looking at you, every Total War game).

    Everything's always online. I know why they do it, but hell, sometimes my internet is crap and I want to play my single player game. That shouldn't be a problem.

  20. - Top - End - #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zevox View Post
    I won't speak to what the developers have "always wanted," as I don't know their minds on the matter. But completely regardless of that, it is an excellent example of what I was talking about, because it's a series that I used to love which now I can't expect to ever be interested in again. Twenty years ago I would have called Ocarina of Time my favorite game ever, and to this day I still very much like it as well as most of the other 3D Zelda titles. But watching footage of people playing parts of Breath of the Wild on Youtube it did not take long for me to see a lot of things that make me go "oh hell, no." But it was more than successful enough that I have no reason to expect them to ever do anything but that style of gameplay again - and as a result, for instance, the teaser for the next game that came at the end of Nintendo's E3 direct did nothing at all for me. Because I can't expect it to be something I'll like anymore.
    Gotcha - so it's not the openness of the world that bothers you, it's the obstacles they put in your way that force you to utilize that openness, like dealing with weather and breaking weapons and monster difficulty spikes.

    I can understand that preference but it doesn't change my judgement either - BotW represents stuff that I strongly feel they've always wanted to do. So in a way you were always on a ticking clock.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Winthur View Post
    Our top story today as the footage from the news chopper indicates that this has been my opinion of Half-Life 2 since release. Outside of the extremely well done visuals and particularly the facial mimicry, as well as some creative environmental setpieces and the physics engine, Half-Life 2 was literally never, at any point, a gripping or inspiring as a game to me. You have also just brought up another gaming trend that irks me, which is the notion that games "age" or "don't age", which is, in most cases, a thought-terminating cliche that shields badly designed games from criticism, is entirely up to the preferences of the individual, and which fosters the notion that you can dismiss most opinions about these older games as nostalgia. You like something old? Take off the rose-tinted glasses, grandpa. You don't like something old? Well you were a mere spermatozoid when it happened. Either way, your opinion is discarded. Quality discussion right here, would take to the floor of the Congress.

    Very few games are an actual, honest-to-goodness, example of a clunky bygone era, and a cutting-edge looking game (for years I kept seeing modern AAA titles that didn't have HL2's attention to detail in terms of animating humans) with modern WASD+mouse controls and many other elements that are easily found in newer games deserves to be scrutinized for being a mediocre gaming experience that it is, especially when you yourself question how can anyone hate HL2 given how influential and polished it was in the first place. Oh, it sure was, and nobody denied it! It was also a really, really boring game and a really, really boring shooter with some of the least satisfying guns ever made. Realistic, gritty depictions of Eastern European backwaters and the vague sense of atmosphere really don't make me like the game any more, as the gameplay makes it all get old quick.

    warty goblin has already dug into the core of how bland and unreplayable HL2 is.
    This.

    It doesn't matter if a game has the best graphics and physics in the world, if it isn't fun to play it's a bad game. And that's Half-Life 2 exactly. It had a better physics engine and graphics than had ever been seen before, but it wasn't fun to play so it was therefore a bad game

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    This is clearly a case of different people having different definitions of fun.

    Some people like bullet hell games and others like roguelikes and others like final fantasy VII and yet others love 2D fighting games with obtuse control schemes and needing to memorize incinvibility frames and whatnot.

    And plenty of people enjoyed Half-physics simulator, me included. I'll agree I didn't feel like replaying it, but then I very rarely replay any game even when they offer fancy new game+ modes, beating them once is often good enough for me even if I fully enjoyed them. Even more in recent years when I have a massive backlog and gaming time is tight.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dienekes View Post
    Pre-order culture. Stop doing it. People buying the game before it's released is part of why we keep seeing buggy games get released far before they're ready with a nice profit. And this includes games I like (looking at you, every Total War game).

    Everything's always online. I know why they do it, but hell, sometimes my internet is crap and I want to play my single player game. That shouldn't be a problem.
    Those two can go die in a fire though.

    Remembers me how most of my Phantasy Star Online experience was offline.
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    ...so we built a five millionth, three hundreth, twenty first one. That one burned down, fell over, then got eaten by the snarl, but the five millionth, three hundreth, and twenty second one stayed up! Or at least, it has been until now."

  23. - Top - End - #143
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    Quote Originally Posted by deuterio12 View Post
    This is clearly a case of different people having different definitions of fun.

    Some people like bullet hell games and others like roguelikes and others like final fantasy VII and yet others love 2D fighting games with obtuse control schemes and needing to memorize incinvibility frames and whatnot.
    How right you are on that. Personally, it is the story and character growth that interest me the most in games, not the overall mechanics. Though I don't want to exactly play an 'interactive movie' like visual novels. I'd rather watch a movie.

    Those two can go die in a fire though.

    Remembers me how most of my Phantasy Star Online experience was offline.
    Personally, I enjoy the CONCEPT of pre-ordering but kickstarting is more up my alley, especially when the game developers LISTEN to their fan base.
    Last edited by Eldonauran; 2019-06-18 at 12:11 PM.

  24. - Top - End - #144
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    The opinions on HL2 are interesting. The game came out at the same time as Doom 3 (same month, I believe), and the opinions I read back then were that HL2 was the better game, by a small, but relevant margin: it was more modern, and it opened up new horizons. Doom 3 went the old and tried way. HL2 opened up the whole physics thing, AND integrated them into the game. This was seen as a huge deal, because interaction with the environment had been the industry's dream for a long while, across different genres.
    At the same time, I did have more fun playing Doom 3. HL2 felt very sparse to me. I actually think that HL1 was a better game. And the physics gun definitely didn't reach its whole potential in HL2, but it nevertheless was immediately recognized and consequently imitated by ID in the Doom 3 expansion, Resurrection of Evil.

    There's also how time has played against HL2, as later games have done everything it set out to do, but better. Want narrative immersion? There's Metro and Bioshock. Want to stay on the outside? There's Stalker. Want the gravity gun? There's Bioshock. Want a game with crazy environment interaction? Red Faction III. Want silt striders that shoot at you? Well, I'm not sure of which game has them, but I have to say that, while their looks were awesome, the actual combat was forgettable. This is true for much of the game: splendid presentation, but I can't remember much else.

    I wonder how much of HL2's current adoration is due to actually having been blown away by the game, to the hype it received back then, to being the sequel to HL, to having turned into a meme, or to smart Valve marketing.
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    I have never played Half-life 2. Yet, I dislike it. Because like so many things it was ruined by the worst thing of all: people. To Whit: I am a big fan of the X-series, and for quite sometime the word Steam was banned from the forums from the sheer number of people whining about the series coming to Steam, all stemming from a years old hate of Steam back in it's infancy when H2 launched on the platform and it went down from volume of traffic.

    So I have a totally ambivalent opinion on the game and it's achievements in narrative and physics. But a general distaste because of people preventing civil discourse because their feelings were hurt not being able to play one game.
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  26. - Top - End - #146
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    The opinions on HL2 are interesting. The game came out at the same time as Doom 3 (same month, I believe), and the opinions I read back then were that HL2 was the better game, by a small, but relevant margin: it was more modern, and it opened up new horizons. Doom 3 went the old and tried way. HL2 opened up the whole physics thing, AND integrated them into the game. This was seen as a huge deal, because interaction with the environment had been the industry's dream for a long while, across different genres.
    At the same time, I did have more fun playing Doom 3. HL2 felt very sparse to me. I actually think that HL1 was a better game. And the physics gun definitely didn't reach its whole potential in HL2, but it nevertheless was immediately recognized and consequently imitated by ID in the Doom 3 expansion, Resurrection of Evil.

    There's also how time has played against HL2, as later games have done everything it set out to do, but better. Want narrative immersion? There's Metro and Bioshock. Want to stay on the outside? There's Stalker. Want the gravity gun? There's Bioshock. Want a game with crazy environment interaction? Red Faction III. Want silt striders that shoot at you? Well, I'm not sure of which game has them, but I have to say that, while their looks were awesome, the actual combat was forgettable. This is true for much of the game: splendid presentation, but I can't remember much else.

    I wonder how much of HL2's current adoration is due to actually having been blown away by the game, to the hype it received back then, to being the sequel to HL, to having turned into a meme, or to smart Valve marketing.
    I think a lot of it is perspective. Half Life came at a time when Action + Puzzles + Story weren't really all that balanced. Half Life didn't have exemplary Action elements, and the Story was good enough to be enjoyable, but it was mostly liked because it incorporated all of these things, when they were usually poorly mashed together.

    Take a look at Final Fantasy 7. It's not all that remarkable in combat, and the plot is convoluted and overly edgy. But the combat is somewhat challenging, the story is likable enough to see interactions between the characters and see the protagonist change throughout the plot. It does a little bit of everything kinda well. Not perfect, mind you, but well. And this was at a time when such a thing was unheard of.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vinyadan View Post
    The opinions on HL2 are interesting. The game came out at the same time as Doom 3 (same month, I believe), and the opinions I read back then were that HL2 was the better game, by a small, but relevant margin: it was more modern, and it opened up new horizons. Doom 3 went the old and tried way. HL2 opened up the whole physics thing, AND integrated them into the game. This was seen as a huge deal, because interaction with the environment had been the industry's dream for a long while, across different genres.
    At the same time, I did have more fun playing Doom 3. HL2 felt very sparse to me. I actually think that HL1 was a better game. And the physics gun definitely didn't reach its whole potential in HL2, but it nevertheless was immediately recognized and consequently imitated by ID in the Doom 3 expansion, Resurrection of Evil.

    There's also how time has played against HL2, as later games have done everything it set out to do, but better. Want narrative immersion? There's Metro and Bioshock. Want to stay on the outside? There's Stalker. Want the gravity gun? There's Bioshock. Want a game with crazy environment interaction? Red Faction III. Want silt striders that shoot at you? Well, I'm not sure of which game has them, but I have to say that, while their looks were awesome, the actual combat was forgettable. This is true for much of the game: splendid presentation, but I can't remember much else.

    I wonder how much of HL2's current adoration is due to actually having been blown away by the game, to the hype it received back then, to being the sequel to HL, to having turned into a meme, or to smart Valve marketing.
    I can still remember standing in the middle of a CompUSA store absolutely slack-jawed at the graphics from the trailer/tech demo they released. The physics were unheard of at the time, and nobody came close in terms of facial features. My experience playing the game was similar - blown away by the physics. Things like picking up a box and carrying it as protection, only for a sniper to shoot me THROUGH the box? That was very much a "Holy @#$@ that was COOL" moment. I also had never experienced anything close to the cinematic quality of the story in any FPS game prior. I think the closest was No One Lives Forever, but that was still level-based.

    I think the level of adoration is because people WERE blown away by the game when it came out. Because I was. I'll agree that it wasn't as good as the original Half-Life, mainly because the qualitative leap Half-Life had over every other FPS game was so massive. It was still a really damn good game. It just hasn't aged well. And I'm not trying to argue that people who thought it was a bad game are wrong. Different strokes, different folks.

    Doom 3 was...interesting. It had incredible shadow rendering for the day, that much I do remember. It took years before anyone did anything with shadows near as good. However, everything else about the game was a bit of a letdown. The game was selling itself as a horror game, but it wasn't scary in the slightest. It used the darkness in ways that felt cheap, by forcing you to choose between having any light at all or a weapon out. The jump scares quickly became predictable. At one point, I activated a switch and then immediately spun in a 180 and fired, hitting a demon as it came out of a portal. Because again, predictable. I saw it described as a carnival funhouse, and that's always struck me as pretty accurate. But across every other metric? Half-Life 2 was better. I've been back to play Half-Life 2 a couple of times over the years (each time how dated it is became more apparent), but I've never been back to Doom 3.

  28. - Top - End - #148
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    My biggest irk? Patches. Every game has to be constantly patched.

    Gone are the days where I can reliably sit down and just play a game for 15 minutes to relax. Because there is now a 50/50 chance that yet another patch was developed for said game. So instead of spending the 15 minutes I managed to carve out to play, I have to download and install a patch.
    Last edited by xroads; 2019-06-18 at 04:56 PM.

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    I think one thing that is also missed from retrospectively looking at HL2 is that a lot of the story was told in-engine, not a pre-rendered cut-scene from every other game of the time. Also telling the story with the gameplay and world building was pretty new at that point.
    It is really easy to miss all of the things it did when so many of those things have been copied and improved on for the last 15 years, they no longer stand out.

    I would also say I don't remember anyone at the time thinking that Doom 3 did anything particularly interesting. Doesn't mean it wasn't fun, but I think we can all recognize that there are many games that are fun that don't do anything new or interesting.

    I was never that into Half-Life either, but I definitely recognize that it had a outsized influence on many games that came afterwards.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Winthur View Post
    You have also just brought up another gaming trend that irks me, which is the notion that games "age" or "don't age", which is, in most cases, a thought-terminating cliche that shields badly designed games from criticism, is entirely up to the preferences of the individual, and which fosters the notion that you can dismiss most opinions about these older games as nostalgia. You like something old? Take off the rose-tinted glasses, grandpa. You don't like something old? Well you were a mere spermatozoid when it happened. Either way, your opinion is discarded. Quality discussion right here, would take to the floor of the Congress.

    Very few games are an actual, honest-to-goodness, example of a clunky bygone era, and a cutting-edge looking game (for years I kept seeing modern AAA titles that didn't have HL2's attention to detail in terms of animating humans) with modern WASD+mouse controls and many other elements that are easily found in newer games deserves to be scrutinized for being a mediocre gaming experience that it is, especially when you yourself question how can anyone hate HL2 given how influential and polished it was in the first place. Oh, it sure was, and nobody denied it! It was also a really, really boring game and a really, really boring shooter with some of the least satisfying guns ever made. Realistic, gritty depictions of Eastern European backwaters and the vague sense of atmosphere really don't make me like the game any more, as the gameplay makes it all get old quick.

    warty goblin has already dug into the core of how bland and unreplayable HL2 is.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bohandas View Post
    This.

    It doesn't matter if a game has the best graphics and physics in the world, if it isn't fun to play it's a bad game. And that's Half-Life 2 exactly. It had a better physics engine and graphics than had ever been seen before, but it wasn't fun to play so it was therefore a bad game
    Both of these are pure opinion. I liked the game and replayed it several times, with all the episodes. HL2 is one of the few games I've 100%ed, including achievements like The One Free Bullet and Gnome Chomsky. Instead I'll address the top bit about nedia aging.

    All media ages, and most ages unfavorably, particularly pioneering media. Sticking away form things that haven't aged well for political reasons, films like The Matrix haven't aged well, in either effects or story. It kicked off a trend that retroactively makes the movie cliche and trite. Seinfeld is unfunny after all.

    Video games get the worst of it because games are still a budding media format. Anything that does something new is completely working in the dark. Games age because time passes, people take once fresh concepts and iterate on them , and the originator then stands as just another piece of media that doesn't succeed at expressing the concept as good as [Insert Your Favorite Derivation Here]. Super Mario 64 invented the 3d collectathon platformer, but nobody would ever say it PERFECTED the formula. Does that make it a bad game, particularly when taken in the context of its time? No, that's ludicrous. None of the examples of that genre you might actually like would even exist without that game.

    But it hasn't aged well. Its camera sucks ass, the controls are finicky, the graphics are horrendous...because it's the first game that had to deal with any of those problems in the current format.

    the game is not 'badly designed', and the use of the phrase tells me you know very little, and likely nothing about the actual process and theory behind game design. Part of which is that design theory is a constantly evolving artform and what used to be good design is no longer.

    "Quarter eaters" are a good example (and by extension the original "Nintendo hard" designation once it moved to console). Quarter eater arcade games were designed to be excruciatingly difficult to make arcade owners more money, and also to be addictive and fun to play so people would keep spending that money. they are impeccably designed for the market they were released in. Similarly the latter; old console games were designed with the thought in mind of "There isn't much on the market,these are made for kids, who have little disposable income, so let's design them to be frustratingly difficult to play so they take longer to finish". Good design at the time.

    Both design philosophies would be laughed out of the room if released today. And no, Dark Souls is not a rebuttal; the two designs come to a similar-ish conclusion through very different avenues and techniques.

    Games age. MEDIA AGES whether you want to pass it off as a "thought terminating cliche" or not. Shakespeare is trite, the Lord of the Rings trilogy is cliche, and Half-Life 2 is no longer the pinnacle example of FPS design. That does not mean they were badly designed or poorly written when they came out.

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