The throne of games
The gaming industry lately has been perplexing me. There are many aspects of this I could go into, but I’ll only focus on a few this time. Please keep in mind that I’m mostly referring to console gaming.
First, game patching. This seriously bothers the shit out of me. If your product is buggy as hell, and has problems locking up on the player, or deleting their saved data, or causing characters and/or environmental elements to warp, disappear, or defy physics, then why the hell are you releasing it? Would it really hurt THAT much to release a polished game? The reason many companies do this, in my opinion, is because they want to see how well the game sells in order to determine whether it’d be cost effective to put the time in to patch. This is disgusting. I’d rather you left off part of the game, maybe a level or side quest or town, and focused more on making a very polished game which will work great out of the box with minimal crashes and issues. Nothing is more frustrating than playing 20 hours of a game, only for it to freeze and corrupt your save file, losing your progress. Game devs are just spoiled by this trend, allowing them to neglect issues depending on how game-breaking they are vs how costly they’ll be to fix. Clean your shit up, fellas.
Second, Storytime. Gameplay is an important part of any game, but stories are just as important for immersion. The game could have the best gameplay out there, but without a really gripping or interesting story, plenty of people aren’t going to care. Also, how about weaving the story into the narrative instead of having us have to read tomes of random in-game paperwork to get the full gist of what’s happening and has happened (FF13, I’m looking at you). Games like Modern Whorefare and the other CoD games are pretty weak in that department, to me at least. The stories are bland and typical, without any real thought or innovation, almost as if they were added on after the fact. I’m actually looking forward to playing Kingdom of Amalur (once it comes down in price, since I’m poor), because the story and lore of the game world was created by R.A. Salvatore, a renowned fantasy novelist. I don’t see why more game studios don’t take this route. Have someone who’s awesome at telling stories, tell the story of your game. It may also help with story pacing, another thing many games suffer from. This isn’t to say that games don’t need good play mechanics and gameplay. It just makes me sad that good games with excellent stories are passed over because they’re not as appealing to the masses, meanwhile games that are almost purely gameplay with very little story **cough**CoDBlOps**cough**, will sell millions just because they are multiplayer FPSs. This leads me to my next gripe…
Third, multiplay..oh go fuck yourself. To me, multiplayer should be either an added on aspect, or all the game is. Don’t go marketing a great storyline, or the epic end of a story, if all you’re really focusing on is a multiplayer game. I personally don’t play much mutiplayer, since I don’t find enjoyment in playing with a bunch of obnoxious 13-24 year olds who often cheat and ruin the game anyways. If you’re making a game and marketing it’s story or theme, then give it a decent single player campaign for fucks sake!!! And you can’t tell me it’s not possible, because it’s certainly been done before. There are plenty of gamers out there like me, people who enjoy a good single player campaign with a great story and good gameplay. There are franchises who’ve done it, but they happen to be few and far between.
Finally (for now), content. There are games out there that are just packed with insane amounts of content, offering us gamers hours upon hours of fun and entertainment. Then you have games that are good for a few hours, and not much else. The real problem I have here is that they cost the same amount!!! How can someone charge full price for a game that takes 5 hours to beat and find just about everything, and one that takes a few hundred hours?! I don’t give a fuck how much replay value the multiplayer has, because then you could also say that the single player campaign has the same replayability if you play it over and over. It’s pretty much the same amount of boring, just without the teenage douchebags telling “your mom” jokes, and calling you a bitch. I dunno, maybe I’m just too old school, or maybe I’m just too much of an asshole, but I personally think that charging full price for a bullshit, thrown together piece of shovelware is bullshit, when there are REAL games out there that provide a better experience and more gameplay for the same price. These game companies are hurting the industry by doing this much more, IMHO, than those who buy used games or lend games to friends. Get with the times folks, cuz you’re losing me, and possibly others as well….