Most Games Suck

Discussion in 'Game Development (Technical)' started by soniCron, Jun 14, 2005.

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  1. soniCron

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    Previously, on How you define a "successful game" sales?...
    I don't think finding glaring problems with most games I've played(1) is a "bold statement". I wouldn't write a book "Whit erorrs schu as this, in, it." As far as my knowing more than quite a lot of professionals, you must be quite naive to believe that they have already figured everything out. I might as well walk out the door right now, because "Everything that can be invented has been invented." -Charles H. Duell, Commissioner, U.S. Office of Patents, 1899.

    Here's why I "know better":
    • There are a lot of copy-cats.
    • There are a lot of boring games.
    • There are a lot of poorly executed games.
    • There are a lot of unimaginitive developers.
    • There are a lot of pompus idiots who think they can make a game because they want to.
    • There are a lot of bad games.

    Can I fix this? No. Can I try to do my absolute best to avoid contributing to the problem? I sure as hell can.

    The problem exists because the industry is so young. There were a lot of issues with the early film industry that needed to be worked out; there was a long transition period from theatre to film. By no means is every film that comes out now a blockbuster. The SNR (which is so often discussed in these forums! ;)) is much lower now, however. The reason? The quantity of highly qualified professionals that exists is much greater now.

    The game industry is just now reaching a point that someone could have spent their whole life making games. This means there are a lot of beginners and people crossing professions to work in gaming. Because of this, there is a lower quantity of consistently successful professionals in this industry. Lower number of highly qualified professionals + high output volume = low signal to noise ratio.

    And before anyone bothers flaming: I am fully aware that I need to "prove" myself first, otherwise I'm just another voice in the crowd. ;)

    (1) For the record, I've got an estimated 1,200 CDROMs and over 200 diskettes; all purchased PC games.
     
  2. Abscissa

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    Just for clarification, are you refering to indie/casual games, mainstream games, or both?
     
  3. ERoberts

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    True, but due to other problems in the games industry, a lot of developers leave the industry after something like 5 years. Most leave after 10. You'd be lucky to have quality of life in the retail games industry (I know some do, but they are not the majority). The movie industry unionized when they went through the same phase. I hope the games industry does as well.
     
  4. Diragor

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    I'm with soniCron. Most games suck. I don't think it's a bold statement, it's Sturgeon's Law and it's true (IMHO). It applies to games just as well as music, books, TV shows, movies and every other creative field.
     
  5. soniCron

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    Well, the issue applies to the mainstream industry as well as the independent developers. I am, in this context however, talking about independent games.
     
  6. ggambett

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    What do you define by "sucks"? A lot of people complain about the lack of innovation and whatnot, but if repetitive, non-innovative, formulaic, generic FPSs continue to be made, is because people continue to buy them. Making games is a business (at least when AAA budgets are measured in millions of dollars!!), so people probably don't care whether the games they make/finance suck or not, but if they sell or not.
     
  7. soniCron

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    I can live with non-innovative gameplay in FPSs and other "reality" games. Those types of games are (or should be) driven by storylines more than a unique way of walking around or shooting monsters. My major beef is the industry confusing itself and the public of what a "game" is.

    In my opinion, Doom and Half-Life are not "games", they're interactive stories or virtual realities. There's about as much "gameplay" in them as on the battlefield of Vietnam. The Mario series are "games". While I wish these "interactive stories" would quit being sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, sci-fi, they don't fully fit into my beef. :p

    Now, when I say gameplay "sucks", I am saying: Match-3 game clones are the equivalent of Hearts and Spades. They're the same damn game! As far as it being a business, oh yes, I know. ;) It's just a shame that they have to try so hard to make money that they're willing to remove the "art" from an artform.
     
  8. papillon

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    I think many people (like me) who really WANT to play interactive stories will get a bit sulky about you categorising doom and half-life as such beasts. :) I know what you mean, but there's still a small horde of cranky adventure gamers who is angry that the adventure label gets stuck on games that are all about action action action and occasionally watching a cutscene. (Yeah, I know a lot of action games have some rudimentary puzzle-solving in them as well, but it's not the same thing.)

    Of course, I don't think it's an interactive story at all if it doesn't have multiple storypaths and outcomes - it's a non-interactive story with a bunch of obstacles stuck bewteen the pages. :)
     
  9. soniCron

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    Brilliant! And I agree with your beef about losing the identity of the Adventure genre. :( I think you understand what I'm saying, however.
     
  10. Bmc

    Bmc New Member

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    edited: everything
     
    #10 Bmc, Jun 14, 2005
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2005
  11. bantamcitygames

    Administrator Original Member Indie Author Greenlit

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    The problem is: its not easy to make a game that doesn't suck. It takes alot of time, effort, and at least a little bit of talent. Even then...

    And also: something that sucks to one person may be alot of fun and enjoyment to another.

    I'm sure the hard-core FPS crowd might say that Zuma sucks, but the middle-aged mother trying to squeeze in a game before dinner would probably love it.

    Does Trials of Werlin "suck"?... if you went by its extreme lack of sales, then I would say "yes", but if you asked a logic puzzle lover then they may say differently.
     
  12. Robert Cummings

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    I think this thread is pretentious <bleep>, sorry but there you have it.

    Please make a game first, for <bleep> sake. Then talk.



    Edited by the editing fairy
     
    #12 Robert Cummings, Jun 14, 2005
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2005
  13. soniCron

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    Tastes are not what I'm referring to at all. What I'm talking about is the execution of development of one genre or another: blatantly unimaginative gameplay or design (done poorly); poor execution (like camera problems in 3D games); various annoyances (like not being able to skip a cutscene). People having different tastes is one thing that'll always be (I hope!). That is something that is typically left to the business side of development.
     
  14. Jack Norton

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    If you had to pick one, and only one from those games, what would be the best in your opinion?
     
  15. luggage

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Some wise words...

    "Before you criticise someone, walk a thousand miles in their shoes."

    You forgot something off your list...

    * There are a lot of reasons why developers aren't at fault for a poor game.

    No offence but your opinion here doesn't matter. A lot of people are buying a lot of match-3 games - are you saying they have no idea that the games they play actually suck? Because you personally don't like match-3 games doesn't mean they "suck".

    Gameplay doesn't become poor because it's been used a lot. Tetris is still fun and the majority of Tetris games are fun. Are you confusing originality with quality gameplay?
     
  16. luggage

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    Have you ever tried to write some camera code for a 3D game? I'm guessing no because otherwise you'd realise how difficult it is to get it right.

    Not skipping cutscenese doesn't make gameplay "suck". You said in another thread that "cutscenese aren't gameplay".

    There's nothing wrong with unimaginitive gameplay to a certain extent. I like Tony Hawk's, I just want the exact same game with more levels.
     
  17. soniCron

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    @Robert: I don't have to write a novel to know a bad one. And please keep the personal attacks private.

    @luggage: You're absolutely right. My opinion doesn't matter to you. Don't bother responding if you don't care about my opinion, because I won't care about yours. (And I'm not talking about agreeing.) Another thing, if I tried to build a house and found I couldn't do it, I wouldn't continue building the house. I wouldn't just explain to the owner that "I'm sorry, I couldn't get the stairs right. You kin'a have to use this rope ere."
     
  18. impossible

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    SoniCron: I'm interested in whatever game you're working on, it must be something innovative and high quality. There's not really any info on your site, do you have any screenshots you could post, or at least an explaination of what type of game it is? The artwork on your site is pretty cool, reminds me of Alien Hominid.
     
  19. GameStudioD

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    Why hasn't this thread been closed or deleted?
     
  20. luggage

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    Don't take it personally. I was talking about your opinion on match-3 games 'sucking'. If the public will buy it then people will make it. The only important opinions when you talk about good games are the buying public, not your opinion and not mine. And the buying public don't think match-3 games suck.

    I have worked on enough crappy retail games that have sold loads. The games sucked in my opinion but that didn't count for anything when adding up royalties.
     
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