What makes a game good anymore?

Discussion in 'Video Games and Technology' started by Liege Prime, Aug 23, 2007.

  1. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    I was commenting on another thread when I realized how drastically my gaming taste has changed over time and from circumstances. So, I was curious about what a lot of the gamers out there look for in a game. Is it graphics? Gameplay? Innovation? Anything really.

    I know that over the years (being 28 now, and playing since I was a toddler), I don't really like the same things I like even 4 years ago. I no longer enjoy fighting games, I no longer really play RPG's unless they are REALLY well done. Graphics are nice but honestly they become unnoticable after playing a game a few hours. Gameplay and balance of difficulty is always important but I have come to realize that there are so many different types of games that gameplay requirements change drastically for evey game. I also lack the time I had before, having to work a lot. So, I have to make sure I am playing the best I can be for the time I get to play.

    Anyways, I would say that I find myself looking for more atmosophere- a game that takes me out of this world and puts me somewhere more fantastic. I really look into single play story modes, since multiplayer just gets me frustrated, even when I do well. I really like having great characters, and most RPG's should require that but so many archtypes are used it's difficult to make appealing characters anymore. I also like outlandish visceral fun, like Katamri Damaci. So, I guess now that's what I look for in games- a great experience and a compelling world. Even great gameplay alone just doesn't cut it.

    Ok, that was a long rant, but I guess to sum it all up there are few things that pull me into games anymore. I wanted to see what other people liked, and maybe spark some interests in games that pass by my radar.
     
  2. toma

    toma eskimo in disguise

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    i think video games peaked in the 90s. too much nowadays is either about graphics or trying to imitate games from the 90s.
     
  3. Maverick Hunter Christian

    Maverick Hunter Christian Choke on that, causality!

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    Sports games aside (and even then, I'm looking to pick up one of this year's hockey titles...) I'll play just about anything. But, I can't play everything; time and money are finite commodities these days.

    For me, a game needs to have two things before I'll consider it a good game worth playing: within the first hour or two, it needs to hook me -- and it can be anything; a graphical effect, atmosphere, art design, gameplay element, story/plot device, character interaction, music, sound design, whatever. Just something early on that reaches out and grabs me.

    Second is how good of a job the game does in representing its value. If it's worth the money it'd cost to buy it. Recently played through TMNT for the 360, finished the game to competion and could've kept it from Gamefly for about $20 and change. But it was such a weak game, and having finished it, I had no desire for another run through then or in the future. Even at $20 the game just wasn't worth it to me. So, back off in the mail it went.
     
  4. beatrush

    beatrush Collects too many things

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    story, "fun-ness" and replay value
     
  5. bugmenot

    bugmenot Banned

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    Games are better now then ever, if you look out for the good ones. Too much crap clogs the game sections and stores it's easy to miss the gems.
     
  6. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    I would have to agree that games are better now then they ever were- but then why am I less impressed with the majority of them? Just playing so many? I don't know. I also often judge gamse by monoraty value. $60 is a lot, and most games aren't worth that, but there is a lot more I try when they drop to $20. And sometimes, they of course aren't worth that.
     
  7. geerave

    geerave Well-Known Member

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    they just have to be "good". i love mainstream games like halo, and madden, but i love obscure games otogi and katamari damacy. it would be hard to nail down what it is that makes a game great. i can think of at least a few games from every genre that i like, and they have little or nothing in common with one another.
     
  8. Maverick Hunter Christian

    Maverick Hunter Christian Choke on that, causality!

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    I think its a number of things. Cost is a factor, new games are coming out every week costing anywhere between 40 and 60. Who's gonna afford all that?

    There's also the fact that games are becoming more derivative. When developers are talking about their projects now, how often do you hear, "It's like 'x' meets 'y'" or, "We really liked this aspect of game 'q' and thought it would work really well with the mechanics of game 'r'" Its harder to find new ideas these days.

    But, I think one of the big issues is the amount of games available. Think about it, we've got 360, Wii, PS3 and PC. PS2 is still getting a healthy share of releases and you've got DS and PSP in the handheld market. There's so many titles out there, its easy to get lost in them all.
     
  9. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    That all sounds pretty true. It isn't finances that bother me too much though, it's time. I don't have a Wii for the sole reason that I wouldn't have time to play another console's worth of games. I would love to Play Zelda, Paper Mario, and soon Metroid 3, and I tell myself I will down the line, but then again I am also sitting on games I haven't even broke out of the wrapper yet. This is actually a big issue for the industry- if there are so many more games that are actually pretty good then before, are we going to have time and money to buy them? A lot of little companys are going out of business and/or getting bought out by bigger ones, I think. Oh, and that's kinda a fault of mine is that I can be a brand whore and I am pretty loyal to the likes of Zelda and Final Fantays, but like them or not, they keep a pretty consistant level of quality. On topic though, limited time and money definitely makes choosing what to play more difficult. Oh, and while previews can help, I can't really trust any reviewers out there.
     
  10. KidDynamite

    KidDynamite don't know nothing Veteran

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    As I've gotten older, my tastes have definitely changed. 10 years ago, even 5 years ago, I loved things like RPGs, was even a completist with them. Back in college I mastered every skill in every job class in Final Fantasy Tactics with every character in my main party. It took about 200 hours of playtime on one game. I was also really into mastering fighting games. I could beat most people with Dan in SF games, and once went on a 100 game winning streak in Tekken 2. For the last 50 matches, with my eyes closed and my back turned to the screen. So yeah, I was pretty hardcore.

    Now I work full time, have three kids, and am attending school at night. I don't have a lot of time for things like RPGs, or the time it takes to get to a competitive level in online FPS games and fighting games, or even narrative games like Zelda or Metroid or Bioshock anymore. I like them, but I'm not going to play more than 2 or 3 in a year, because I can only play them in the short snippets of time (20 minutes here, 45 minutes there) I can find in between all my obligations as well as my other hobbies that I've grown to enjoy more than games. So I'm really only going to hit the very top .1% cream of the crop in narrative type games, and have pretty much given up RPGs entirely, because most would take me a year or longer to get through.

    Because of my time constraints, over the years I've gravitated towards things I can play complete experiences in the little time I have. That means I spend more time with things like sports games, rhythm games, puzzle games, casual games, portable systems, and the like. The horror. But really, I find something like Guitar Hero or Wii Sports or even Tetris much more satisfying than the latest Final Fantasy or Zelda. Seriously. It's just the kind of gaming that fits into the time I can reasonably allot.
     
  11. smangerbot

    smangerbot The Holy Zombie Jesus TFW2005 Supporter

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    Bewbs!
     
  12. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I'm just way too busy for games with these.
     
  13. smangerbot

    smangerbot The Holy Zombie Jesus TFW2005 Supporter

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    cocks?
     
  14. King Starscream

    King Starscream <b><font color=blue>The Royal Seeker</font></b> Veteran

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    Ten Years ago, I ate up fighting games like there was no tomorrow. Tekken 3, most Street Fighter related games and MK's I-III. Fighting games lost there luster when I actually had a lot of time to play, but when you beat Tekken 50 times, it gets old. Then, up until about five years ago it was RPG's and Metal Gear with a little Gran Turismo thrown in. That satisfied the time requirement I had and most of them were a lot of fun to play. Then the time I had to play became a lot less. Nowadays it seems like FPS's are my cup of tea. I can either spend hours playing online or playing the single player campaign or I can just spend a few minutes playing an online match. Tis the best of both worlds.

    What makes a good game to me is cost, playability, replayability, and fun factor. A 60 dollar game simply isn't worth it if it's not fun to play. The recent movie based Transformers game for example, while it had pretty graphics and I could just about play any Transformer, it was probably one of the most frustrating games to play. On the flip side, you have the PS2 Armada game. While you could only play 3 Transformers and graphics are a bit dated now, it was a very well designed and very playable game. I would probably play it again, if I so chose. TF Movie on the other hand will probably go to EB if and when I complete that.
     
  15. Master Megatron

    Master Megatron Action Bastard

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    If it can keep me playing, it's very good.
     
  16. Dinobot Nuva

    Dinobot Nuva Johnny 3 Tears Veteran

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    FPS. At least there you get into an actiony "fun" place right from the get go. With RPGs you have to level up and stuff to get all the really cool abilities, and I just can't stand wasting so much time on that. I play a game to relax and blow up some shit, not to work my ass off when I do that for most of my real life day.
    DN
     
  17. Liege Prime

    Liege Prime Well-Known Member

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    Well, I would definitely say that fun is the most important thing in a game, and if I am not having fun then I won't play. The thing is, fun is really different from game to game. I have fun playing RPGs because I like leveling and becoming a god, and often the story can at least be like watching a TV series or extended movie. But when I play Gears of War, of course I am not looking to level up, I am looking just for that visceral action.

    I know I asked what people thought made a game worth playing now, but one thing I meant with that was how peoples taste have changed with time and progression of technology. It's nice to hear that some people are in the same boat as me when it comes to changes, like moving away from fighting games and RPG's due to time and playing so many. In the early 90's I was all about RPGs, with FF2 and FF3, Chrono Trigger, Breath of Fire etc. I STILL try to play the biggest ones. I played through FF12- it took me about 5 months and I ended up with 190 hours. That was the only game I played during that period of time. So, I have to be REALLY picky with RPGs. Plus, a lot of them do repeat the same stuff you get from an anime or older RPGs. I thought FF12 was pretty original and had a fun combat system.

    I think another thing that changed my tastes was MMORPGs. I really only invested time in one, but it was like 500 hours or so, and then the TF Armada game came out. It was just absolutely fun playing something fast paced and not relying on other people logging in at certain times, so I passed my account onto someone else and swore off MMORPGs. It also gave me a new appreciation for straight up action.
     
  18. Prowl

    Prowl Well-Known Member

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    And unfortunately the games that try to break away from that pattern sell poorly compared to the former, so no one tries to break the mold.
     
  19. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    But not in that order. Fun should always be the most important factor. Stories are just there to dress the game up a bit.
     
  20. Gigatron_2005

    Gigatron_2005 President of Calendars

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    I say to me, the important things that make a game good and stand out are simply how much fun I'm having while playing it, how much polish the game has to it, and how I felt about my overall experience when Im finished and walk away. The graphics, sound, story, etc are all components that can be/are very important, but the overriding factor is the fun.

    Also, I would like to take this opportunity to have a tirade. First off, I dont know who the hell is reviewing games these days, but Im really getting sick of them. I bought Bioshock earlier in the week, and the game is totally not deserving of anything near the perfect 10s that the game has been receiving like candy from various organizations. It really brings to mind the questions for me of A: are these people retarded? B: are they even finishing the games? or C: are they getting paid for reviews? Anything above a 9.3 for this game is starting to go a little overboard IMO. Dont get me wrong, the game is really good, but its simply not deserving of some of the insanely high scores the game has received.

    And to relate this to above, yes. Bioshock was fun, atmospheric, very well polished, etc. But by the end of the game, I just felt empty. The ending just plain sucked. It felt like they were about 2/3 through with making one of the best FPSs of recent years, then the just quit, slapped together a CG movie, and shipped the discs out. And let me say that while the last part of the game was really cool, it was maybe a little too easy, and they should have had more fights like that throughout the game.
     

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