Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Game Development (Technical)' started by soniCron, Jun 14, 2005.
I wonder why a game would "suck" because it's controlled with the keyboard and not mouse. Tetris and Super Mario Bros are both controlled with keyboard and they don't SUCK. They just don't. Because mouse-controlled games are selling on portals does not make mouse control the "SUCK"meter for measuring "suck"ness .
IMO, It has nothing to do with whether or not portal games are mouse based.
Controlling Tetris or Mario with the mouse wouldn't make them better - in fact, it would make them much worse. Ultratron, however, would significantly benefit from using the mouse to aim/fire (in many people's opinion on this board). That could easily sway someone's opinion from 'sucks' to 'rocks'.
I think that barring taste barriers, a game that sucks is pretty easy to identify. Something that you get frustrated with regularly = sucks. This is, of course, provided the frustration isn't tied to a natural part of the gameplay (like the difficulty of a puzzle game).
Cas' Ultratron, for example: lot's of people are bitching about the lack of mouse support. Personally, I'd say it would ruin the effort to support a mouse. But in the technical aspect, yes, it sucks. It sucks because so many people will go so far as to hate playing it because of the lack of mouse control.
This makes it a touchy endeavor and if it can't be resolved easily, I would quit working on it, personally. That's not to say it shouldn't be made, because it's definately targeting a very niche audience (retro buffs). Changing the control would be devastating, so it's definately correct in its direction, but we're looking at a gray area here. So, for who he's targetting, I'd say it's fairly successful at what it's trying to accomplish. But it still sucks because it pisses so many people off. If I couldn't make the game as enjoyable as possible to as many people as possible, I would move on to something else.
2D Mario, on the other hand, was executed amazingly every time. The level of technical irritation was a shave from nil for almost every person. And, it was original. Sure, it wasn't as "original" as Katamari, but until it was made, there really were no games like it. And when the sequels came, they too changed the fundamental gameplay so drastically to make it original again. (I'm leaving out Mario 2 because it's not really a Mario game.)
Mario 3 introduced the ability to fly, turn into a statue, and swim with a frog suit. Most importantly, it introduced the concept of non-linear gameplay to a platformer. These were amazing and drastic changes while still keeping the core of it's platform nature. Mario World introduced a huge world to explore with color switches that literally changed a level the next time you were there. It introduced a character you could sit on and would completely change the way you played the game. It was so non-linear that it could be beaten in 96 levels or 12. Then came Yoshi's Island, which furthered the gameplay even more by introducing so many elements that I'm not even going to bother listing. I could go on and on. The series remained popular as all getout because it was consistently fun and original each time.
Point is, the game remained a platformer through all it's incantations, but continued to change it's core gameplay. And I'm not talking about changing enemies. Or chaning powerups. I'm talking about massive overhauls to the gameplay that changed the experiences so drastically that we never felt we were playing a sequel, but we always knew we were playing a Mario game.
The industry can support something different. The public can appreciate change. And as long as we keep it within certain boundaries, we can really push the envelope so much further than we've become accustomed to. It can be as different as absolutely possible, and if you can convince the player to relate to the game, it won't matter that it's the absolute first of it's kind. It won't matter that it's a completely new concept. Because, they'll love playing it.
The whole "game X sucks because not everyone likes the controls, therefore the controls should be <insert opinion here>" argument is a big joke on the game designer.
Did I capture it accurately with the "ultratron+mouse==crimsonland" one liner in another thread? Basically, it's a completely different game, and one which someone else may have written or may not have written.
I for one have no intention of trying to make my games not suck. I believe it is important to explore specific combinations of mechanics and define them as "the game".
In fact, this is why I appear to ignore so many people's helpful suggestions, because often they are actually just suggestions to make a different game with the same graphics, which to me is just like making the same game with different graphics, and that's no good.
I, I, I, me me me, etc. Why is it so hard to have an opinion round here without sounding opinionated?
Because it's interesting.
But it should be moved into General Chat as it's philosophical not technical and nothing to do with development at all. Naughty mods!
A game about sex would suck.
You've really got to of finished a few games before you can really know how hard it is to make a game that doesn't 'suck'. I used to think I could make something better than most of the other games out there when I started, because I thought they all sucked. Now that I have woken up out of my dream world, I have realised that making something that doesn't 'suck' and that makes decent money is very hard - and as a result I appreciate other people's games far more.
You are right, our games could, and really need to start getting much better - but I really think you are being too harsh in saying they 'suck'.
With all due respect this is an utter load of bull. Don't you suppose that a fellow who has spent even a month on game development has a pretty dang good idea at how difficult it is to even finish one at all, let alone one that doesn't suck? Unless this fellow is a complete idiot he knows where he's been in the process, where he is in the process, and what needs to get done in order to finish.
This enlightenment does not pop into ones head the day they have finished their first game. It is clearly evident during the development process.
If the fellow can't tell sucky games from non sucky games that's a different story and has nothing to do with whether they have finished a few games or not.
I think there's value in reminding people on an indie game dev forum that most game suck. For starters it reinforces the idea that making a really good game is incredibly hard, which it helps to remember.
But the thing is, most games suck whether they're big budget studio releases or small indie games. The reasons they suck are generally the same reasons, and it has nothing to do with fancy graphics, big teams or money. Nothing profound there, but it's still worth remembering... making a game that doesn't suck might be really difficult, but it's still something you could potentially do by yourself.
No, no, no. Anyone who has actually finished a game will know how hard it is to finish it. The first 90% of a game is a stroll in the park compared to the last 10%. And you won't find that out till it's done.
His original response to "You've really got to of finished a few games before you can really know how hard it is to make a game that doesn't 'suck'." still applies, however. Yes, I agree that finishing a game is something that can only be experienced by actually finishing a game. But you definately don't have to finish a game to know how hard it is to make one that doesn't suck.
You don't have to know a single thing about programming to be qualified to say whether games suck or not. In fact it's probably best if you know nothing at all about how they're made! That way it's particularly funny when your game gets shot down in flames by someone who has absolutely no idea that you spent 6 gruelling months on it
I agree with Cas. You don't need to know anything about coding to know whether a game sucks. Knowing how hard it is to make a game that doesn't suck does require some knowledge of game development. There's a subtle difference.
From a previous post:
I know this may seem like a completely off-topic remark, but it goes along with Cas's idea of how non-dev's are far more useful at saying what games suck and what is good.
I really enjoyed the game Cactus Bruce (despite many people here saying it 'sucked'). And to date, it is the only shareware game I have every bought, although I plan on buying some more good ones in the future
When I showed it to a friend, I told him (after hearing a topic from SteveZ) that it took the developer 2 months to make. At first I thought he would be amazed by this, because I could have never have done the game that quickly. To my surprise, he said "Two months!! I would have thought a week or so at most."
So it just goes to show that people who don't design games can be far more critical of games simply because they don't understand the effort required to make one. I know Cactus Bruce isn't exactly the most complicated game, but the amount of time it takes to polish, test and fill with content is staggering.
That is why we can't really judge our own products. We are just too different than the people we are selling too. We are too jaded, respecting originality far more than the average consumer, and we are also too lenient on a games flaws due to difficulty.
I once made a comment about a match 3 game (as did soniCron) that the game's installation length was too long. After the author said he was having trouble lowering the time due to the method he used, soniCron made a comment empathizing with the difficulty he faces (not to say you excused it though, Dan).
This is the problem! We are too willing to accept game flaws because we understand the difficulties to correct them. And in the same breath we criticize a lack of originality far more than most casual gamers because we have tired ourselves out playing basically every game under the sun.
Easiest way to find out if your game is crap:
Watch someone who has never made a game before (or tried) play it right in front of you. Where do they feel frustration? When do the give up? More importantly, what do they complain about?
Often times you will be told more game flaws in five minutes than you would have discovered in over a week of research.
Sonicron, what's the point in that post?
"Before you criticise someone, walk a thousand miles in their shoes."
"You don't need to know anything about coding to know whether a game sucks."
Who has been criticised in the above quote? Having an opinion is different to criticising someone.
I thought you were going to make an effort to keep the noise down?
I was just interested in hearing why you had a change of heart.
Don't be a smartass!
I haven't. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. As I said above, an opinion isn't the same as criticism.
Most games suck - true.
Things can only be invented once, and things are invented for two reasons - they "fulfill a need" or simply because "they can be".
The "fulfill a need" was done with the first video game, everything after that was done because it could be done.
What I am describing is a basic problem - The problem being that there are only so many variations in game style possible and the obvious ones have already been created
- one screen
- top down scrollers
- side scrollers
- 3D third person
- 3D first person
- 3D puzzles
- Virtual Reality
There are only 3 dimensions folks (at least that we can recognize). The first games of each of those types were not so much innovative as they were able to capatalize on the technology (done because they could be done) - though they win the blue ribbon for being first. Since the first of each of those, all games have just been variations.
Now....create a game that DOESN"T fall into one of those categories and I will believe you truly are innovative...until then, your game will "suck" just as much as mine or anyone elses.