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Games Industry Things We Should Leave Behind in '07 208

Posted by Zonk
from the so-many-things-to-keep-back-there dept.
MTV's Multiplayer blog has a list of nine videogame concepts we should be 'leaving behind', left to rot in the now-passed year of 2007. From the countdown clocks to Halo 3, their snarky list leaves no stone unturned: "The Phrase 'Next-Gen' - Ladies and gentlemen, 'next-gen' is now. Everyone from PR firms to development studios are still using this phrase. Please, I beg of you, stop using "next-gen" until the PS4, Xbox 4000, and the Nintendo Super Wii are slated for release. Those consoles will officially be 'next-gen.' The PS3, Wii, and 360 are the current generation of games. Now is the time to accept it."
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Games Industry Things We Should Leave Behind in '07

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  • by fotbr (855184) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:10PM (#21915850) Journal
    Please?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mqduck (232646)
      I think you're missing the point. Articles like this just serve as good jumping-off points for Slashdot discussion, which is what a lot of us are here for.
    • by LordKaT (619540)
      They're great SEO.
  • by compumike (454538) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:11PM (#21915866) Homepage
    Nintendo couldn't keep up with demand for the Wii... and it was like that for more than 9 months! Take a look at this article from Wired [wired.com], but still there are few answers as to why it was so bad for so long. I'd like to vote for better supply chain management in 2008.

    --
    Educational microcontroller kits for the digital generation. [nerdkits.com]
    • by jandrese (485)
      9 months? From what I see their problems are going for at least 13 months now and counting. There was an article in my local paper this morning about how people were lining up in front of some store because they were getting a shipment of 100 Wiis instead of the normal 5 or 6. Apparently that store won some sort of sales contest over the Christmas holiday season and got the big shipment as a prize. The idea of seeing a Wii in stock around here is still laughable and the console has been out for over a y
      • by creimer (824291)
        Supposedly they are available in my area at Fry's Electronics but only in the $500 bundle. I'm waiting for the day when I can just walk past all these piles of PS3 and 360s that no one wants to pull a Wii off the shelf. :)
    • What you mean "couldn't", kemosabe. It ain't past tense. There's no place I know of where I can just walk in and get a Wii for $250 (which is supposed to be the MSRP). I've been thinking I might like one, but I'm not paying a premium or buying one of those ridiculous bundle packs. I'll buy one when I can buy one for $250, and until then, well, I really do have a lot of other games, some of which I haven't gotten around to playing at all yet.

      Chris Mattern
      • by Runefox (905204)
        I got kind of lucky. A Future Shop (think Best Buy; they're the same company) in the city here had five consoles in stock, with one being sold as I was buying another. I managed to grab one just by walking in, and I haven't seen anywhere else with Wii stock since.
    • by Zeussy (868062)
      Quote from George Harrison, senior vice president for marketing at Nintendo of America. He said there was a shortage because the company must plan its production schedule five months ahead, and projecting future demand is difficult. He added that there had been a worldwide shortage of disk drives that had hurt Nintendo as well as makers of many other devices.

      Taken from NYTimes [nytimes.com] Planning ahead for future demand is hard, but after the first initial rush on launch back in 06 they should of realized that de
  • Super Wii (Score:5, Interesting)

    by HoneyBunchesOfGoats (619017) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:11PM (#21915880)
    Man, I really hope they call it that.
    • by trdrstv (986999) on Friday January 04, 2008 @07:52PM (#21916960)

      Man, I really hope they call it that.

      Honestly I'm hoping for simply "Wii HD". A fully backwords compatible Wii that will display in 720p as a minimum. There would be other enhancements of course, but I think since Nintendo went "Revolutionary" with both their handheld and console I think the next generation will be "Evolutionary".

    • by Cheapy (809643)
      "Hardcore Wii: Putting the Hard back into the Wii"
    • by red_dragon (1761)

      I have word from a "reliable source" that the next Wii upgrade will go by the name of Superfly Johnson (Suupaa Dankon in Japan). The bundled game will be Daikatana 2: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut.

    • Back in the day, you didn't feel too stupid saying "Super Nintendo" or "Super NES" or "ess-ness" because, well, you were probably about 10 and everyone else (all the kids) had to say it in some silly-sounding way, too. You'd have the occasional eye-rolling when someone said their shibboleth differently (for instance, I grew up around Super NES kids, and the ess-ness and--god forbid!--ess-en-ee-ess kids were laughed at), but that was how things went. "Super Nintendo" was long and dorky-sounding, and so were
    • by ZorbaTHut (126196)
      Whenever I need to make a comment about the next generation of consoles I refer to them as the XBox 720,000, the PlayStation eXtreme, and the Wiiwii.
  • by CrazyJim1 (809850) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:13PM (#21915908) Journal
    I don't like people saying that people shouldn't get deep into the game as a hardcore player. I like the philosophy on board games: Minutes to learn, a lifetime to master.
  • by Chyeld (713439) <chyeldNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:15PM (#21915932)
    Top two on my list: MTV (and SpikeTV, and VH1, and every other "entertainment only" network), and the idea that they have intelligible to say about the gaming industry.
  • The 9 things (Score:5, Informative)

    by Jim Hall (2985) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:19PM (#21916018) Homepage

    It's a short article, but here are the 9 things for those of you who don't want to RTFA:

    1. The Phrase "Next-Gen". (It's not "next gen" until the PS4.)
    2. "Halo 3". (Similar to the above, Halo is done, the fight is finished, no need to refer to the version anymore.)
    3. Bad Virtual Console Releases. (Referring to Nintendo.)
    4. Game Delays. (I'm with him in hating delays, but good luck on that one.)
    5. Countdown Clocks. (I guess I never noticed a countdown clock on gaming web sites, but maybe that's because I don't really visit web sites for not-yet-released games. I suppose they have them.)
    6. Japan-Only Releases. (If the game is done, why not also release it in the US? Maybe it will do well, maybe not. Give it a try.)
    7. The PlayStation 2. (Please start pushing developers to the PS3.)
    8. 711 selling Video Games. (Doesn't like the idea of being able to buy a Slurpee and a video game in one stop.)
    9. Totilo and N'Gai's Love Affair. (These guys are friends and they talk about each other in their articles, but we'd like to hear more about games than the other guy.)
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Japan-Only Releases. (If the game is done, why not also release it in the US? Maybe it will do well, maybe not. Give it a try.)

      1. Region Issues

      The US is - uh, a bit puritan. Any and all references to sex must be excised, since what's a kid's game in everywhere that's not the US becomes porno in the US.

      Then there's the whole "not English" thing, where the game must be translated into elementary-level English to allow the majority of US readers to understand what's going on.

      2. It Costs A Lot More Than You Think

      Placing boxes in stores costs a lot. Producing the box and doing marketing (even if it is only to the store) is required if

    • by Moraelin (679338) on Friday January 04, 2008 @08:56PM (#21917640) Journal
      Ya know, I'm already fairly tired of "Top X Worst Y" types of list, that seem to serve the only purpose of showing that the author can talk smack. Generally. But this one is the most brain-dead and clueless I've seen in years. And yes, I did RTFA, but I'll use you summary just because I'm too lazy to write my own.

      1. The Phrase "Next-Gen". (It's not "next gen" until the PS4.)

      This is the only one which actually has a point, so I thought I'd give it a nod before moving on to the real offenders. Though even here, good luck getting marketers to quit using meaningless buzzwords.

      2. "Halo 3". (Similar to the above, Halo is done, the fight is finished, no need to refer to the version anymore.)

      Actually, IMHO your summary here is slightly inexact. What he demands is that they stop hyping and advertising Halo 3, and start hyping again when they release Halo 4. He has nothing against the version number, and his expecting a Halo 4 kinda doesn't imply that he sees the fight as finished. He's just tired of hearing about Halo 3.

      Well, sadly

      A) that's just capitalism in action. If MS thinks they can still sell Halo 3, how's that different from still advertising last year's model of car, or last year's CD of some band?

      B) that advertising pays for some other things he's getting cheaper or for free. E.g., since the site name seems to imply having something to do with MTV, I'd like to see how MTV would survive without massive advertising. All those music videos are, effectively, advertising for whichever band the recording companies manufactured this year.

      3. Bad Virtual Console Releases. (Referring to Nintendo.)

      WTF? It's not like it even costs much to release a ROM for an emulator. But more importantly, what's _his_ problem there? It's not like anyone forces him to play or buy those anyway. Plus, being that they're ancient games, he should be able to find tons of reviews and whatnot.

      Plus, here's the fun part: not everyone has the same tastes. What's crap for him and he doesn't want re-released, could be someone else's nostalgia moment. Even something like "Donkey Kong Jr. Math," well, why not? Some mom or dad might think that that's useful for their 6 year old.

      4. Game Delays. (I'm with him in hating delays, but good luck on that one.)

      Now this is truly brain dead. Those delays don't happen as some premeditated marketing ploy, they happen because people are bad at guessing the future. The fact is, even if you could know exactly how much code you'll need to write (you don't), and exactly how long it would take to _write_ it, you can't guess what bugs you'll have to fix. Therefore, nor how much time you'll spend fixing those.

      Then there are the inevitable design changes. Some things it's easier to just see how it looks in the game, before you decide how you'll do it. Some things sound good in theory, but you'll find out that they suck when you sic the playtesters on it. Etc.

      Sure, there are ways to make things more maintainable and reduce the surprises, but even that isn't 100% bullet proof. And good luck with getting the game industry to follow best practices anyway. Especially when:

      A) you have the publisher telling you that it _has_ to be ready within X months and Y dollars, you just don't have the time or budget for UML diagrams and funky frameworks, and

      B) you have to push the edge in terms of graphics and whatnot (because screenshots sell), but still have a finite budget of CPU cycles and GPU gigatexels/second, and you know everyone will moan if the frame rate is even 1 less FPS than in another similar game. So, you know, you end up doing evil hacks just to meet those constraints.

      Seriously, short of hideously overestimating (which the publisher will reject from the start) or being able to see in the future, it just won't happen.

      5. Countdown Clocks. (I guess I never notice

      • by ZorbaTHut (126196)

        No, not exactly. He says they should outright kill the PS2.

        At any rate, it's another WTF. If it still sells and makes a profit, why on Earth would any company want to kill it?

        I agree with most of your points, but not this one. He's saying that the PS3 would be in a much better position if the PS2 was gone. Right now they're raking in their short-term profits (PS2 sales) and sacrificing their long-term profits (extra adoption of the PS3). He thinks that Sony is shooting themselves in the foot badly here, and

        • Sadly it's still not that simple.

          If Sony thought that everyone who can't find a PS2, will go buy a PS3, yeah, they would have killed it already. Unfortunately, even from a position of monopoly (which Sony doesn't have), that's still not an easy stunt to pull. See MS's trouble convincing people to get Vista instead of XP.

          In practice, if they couldn't buy a PS2 any more, a lot of people would do one of the following:

          - go buy an XBox or Wii instead. (So Sony would be sacrificing their profits for the sake of r
  • by HappyDrgn (142428) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:28PM (#21916152) Homepage
    Really, I was shocked that the Xbox needed a cable running to my living room for net access. Climbing around by attic running 50ft of network cable is not my idea of a "next gen" experience. I realize that you can buy all sorts of things to overcome this, but please can we put a $5 wifi chip into so called "next gen" consoles from now on?
    • Arg, no (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Rix (54095) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:40PM (#21916296)
      Please stop putting cheap ass wifi chips (which only support WEP) in consumer electronics. I really shouldn't have to leave my network open to all comers to use your shit.
      • by xenocide2 (231786)
        WPA is stronger encryption, but this does cut both ways. The only thing I own that only supports WEP is the DS, which I suspect was a battery life decision, as it also only runs at 2Mbps and a rather weak signal.
        • You may as well leave the network open. It's trivial to recover a WEP key.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            While it may not be great, WEP is a far cry from nothing. A WEP key is the difference between random neighbor going "oh, I don't have to pay for internet!" or not. 99% of the population doesn't even know that "WEP" is a kind of encryption, let alone that it's breakable.
            • by trdrstv (986999)

              While it may not be great, WEP is a far cry from nothing. A WEP key is the difference between random neighbor going "oh, I don't have to pay for internet!" or not. 99% of the population doesn't even know that "WEP" is a kind of encryption, let alone that it's breakable.

              You can also add Mac address filtering to better secure the connection.

              • by sholden (12227)
                Anybody who can defeat MAC filtering can defeat WEP. Hence the only reason to use WEP is to encrypt, but anyone who knows how to snoop the transmissions can also defeat WEP. Hence WEP is useless.
                • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

                  by Vermifax (3687)
                  You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
    • Yeah, fast, reliable, extensible and relatively secure networking is really a thing of the past.

      Wireless is fine if you've got no neighbors and only a device or two, but it's really a second rate solution. Especially in an environment where you've got 3+ networked devices, stream video (especially HD) or have devices which interfere with wireless (some microwaves, cordless phones, radiotransmitters).
  • Next-Gen (Score:3, Funny)

    by ticklejw (453382) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:34PM (#21916206) Homepage
    But if we stop using Next-Gen now, we won't have the opportunity to call things Post-Next-Gen in a few years :-(
    • by mqduck (232646)
      Don't forget Ultra-Next-Gen and the inevitable Retro-Next-Gen revival.
    • by mqduck (232646)
      Oh, another amusing thing: One of the main emulator sites is NGEmu.com (you know, Next Gen Emulation). And the "NG" they were referring to when the site started was the PSX.
  • Misogyny (Score:5, Insightful)

    by crosson (1204404) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:36PM (#21916234)
    I think one of the major barriers to the video-game industries quest for mass media acceptance is the stuck-in-the-1980s tendency to portray women as sexual objects with boys-club-only lack of shame.
    • Agreed (Score:5, Interesting)

      by PixelScuba (686633) on Friday January 04, 2008 @08:53PM (#21917612)
      Thank you, I have written about this several times. The video game industry is even worse than the film industry when it comes to trivializing and objectifying women. At least in film, women with "undesirable" figures can land parts and be leads in motion pictures... in the gaming industry, modelers and board executives create their sexual fantasies and incorporate them into the game. Damn near every female game character is some archetypal short, buxom, hyper-sexualized character to fulfill the designer, artist and players sexual fantasies. Why isn't Alyx Vance a little husky? Why is Lara Croft a sex bomb with huge breasts when her figures and career tells me should would probably be closer to flat chested and sinewy.

      The video game industry is stuck being the fantasy playground of horny young males... and I don't see this terrible trend changing any time soon. Why make a realistic character when you can just model the girl of your dreams... and on the flip side, what horny male teen wants to play a game with a lead character that looks like Kathy Bates?
      • Why isn't Alyx Vance a little husky? Maybe because the lack of extremely processed and fortified nutrition combined with the fact that she runs around 24/7 means that with a normal metabolism, she wouldn't be a little husky.
      • by DeadChobi (740395)
        If they made a game starring a character shaped like Kathy Bates, then the game should center around the character trying to keep an author locked in her house until he completes his last book.
      • by grumbel (592662)
        ### Damn near every female game character is some archetypal short, ...

        The problem isn't just that the female characters aren't realistic, the problem is that the games aren't. The male characters in games aren't any less stylized then the female ones and same can be said about basically every element of the plot or game in general. As long as games don't even try to tell a story, you don't have to be surprised that its all guys with big fat guns and girls with barely enough cloth to cover them up.

        But I dou
      • by JoshJ (1009085)
        I didn't think Alyx was that over-the-top. Sure, she's not ugly, but then again they generally don't make the males be ugly either. Alyx had a fairly average build and would look completely out of place in DOA Volleyball.

        Look at the guys in video games and can you honestly say it's sexism so much as it is "we just don't want to make you play the ugly person"?

        Pretty much every game with a buttload of NPCs actually has ugly NPCs of both genders.
      • Re:Agreed (Score:4, Insightful)

        by king-manic (409855) on Saturday January 05, 2008 @07:18AM (#21921138)

        Damn near every female game character is some archetypal short, buxom, hyper-sexualized character to fulfill the designer, artist and players sexual fantasies. Why isn't Alyx Vance a little husky? Why is Lara Croft a sex bomb with huge breasts when her figures and career tells me should would probably be closer to flat chested and sinewy.
        Conversely why isn't kratos a bit tubby with glasses? How come Solid snake isn't 5'0? Why isn't Link obese? It's because they're selling fantasy. Lara croft i agree is just lame. But Alyx Vance at least looks like a girl i might meet outside of a strip club. I think Alyx vance highlights how far they've come from the Tomb raider days. Frankly I'd have some more problem buying into a game if we have a 5'0 350 lb man or woman hoofing it across a broken cityscape at full sprint for a 15 min session.
    • I don't know if you've seen an action movie, listened to hip-hop, bought a men's magazine, seen the way some women dress, and on and on. The entire western cultural understanding of women is severely MPD... one minute they're sex objects, the next they're dignified human beings who deserve respect for their intellect, wisdom, or what have you.

      Of course, what we do to men is probably worse.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Catnapster (531547)

      I think one of the major barriers to the video-game industries quest for mass media acceptance is the stuck-in-the-1980s tendency to portray women as sexual objects with boys-club-only lack of shame.

      This would make a great deal of sense if:

      • Video games weren't part of the mass media.
      • The (other) mass media weren't also portraying women as sexual objects as early and often as possible.
      • The (other) mass media ever had any shame whatsoever.

      Since video games are part of the mass media, the mass media loves

  • by Hamster Lover (558288) * on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:39PM (#21916276) Journal
    Recent game developments I would love to see dismissed forever:

    • Non-interactive, long, drawn out, cinematic cut scenes. Just let me play the fucking game.
    • Downloadable content that isn't downloaded but only unlocked on the game disc.
    • Unrealistic release schedules.
    • Timed exclusives.
    • Rabid fanboi 360 versus PS3 frame by frame game comparisons. I love great games on any system.
    • Shitty, utterly tacked-on Wii games.
    • The yearly $60 sports games that feature incremental improvements and roster changes. We should be able to download roster changes by now; keep major changes to the game engine to a release every couple of years.
    • Non-interactive, long, drawn out, cinematic cut scenes. Just let me play the fucking game.

      Some people like cut scenes. They can be fun watch (some people like the mix of interactive and non-interactive entertainment) and they can give games more depth.

      Unrealistic release schedules.

      Welcome to the world of capitalism where companies need to keep consumer confidence high in order to do well in the stock market.

      The yearly $60 sports games that feature incremental improvements and roster changes. We should be able to download roster changes by now; keep major changes to the game engine to a release every couple of years.

      Not going to happen. If a game can guarantee profit, it will be made. Regardless, I think you can download roster updates for many sports games on next-gen systems.

      • by grumbel (592662)
        ### Some people like cut scenes.

        The problem aren't cut scenes themselves, since sometimes you need them to tell a complete story (Half Life, I am looking at you...). However cutscenes become a problem when they show you stuff that should have been gameplay, if my hero does something, I want to do it, not watch it play out by itself.
    • by antic (29198) on Friday January 04, 2008 @07:44PM (#21916868)
      - Cut scenes that you can't skip (hello Assassin's Creed!)
        - Game trailers that are 50% intro material, 30% outro and all of 20% actual game footage
        - Proper reviews from people that have played the full game (e.g., Gamespot's review of Assassin's Creed neglects to mention a questionable ending and how annoying it gets to hear "Please sir, can I have some money?" or townspeople being hassled by guards)
    • "Non-interactive, long, drawn out, cinematic cut scenes.": Over 10 years old.

      "Unrealistic release schedules.": I don't even know how old that one is.

      "Timed exclusives.": 30 years old, and usually done for budgetary reasons.

      "Rabid fanboi 360 versus PS3 frame by frame game comparisons.": 30 years old [intellivisionlives.com], albeit with different systems, and less in-detail, but I do remember fairly detailed comparisons of SNES/Genesis.

      "The yearly $60 sports games that feature incremental improvements and roster changes.": 10+ years
    • by Jack9 (11421)

      Non-interactive, long, drawn out, cinematic cut scenes. Just let me play the fucking game.

      Final Fantasy is BASED on this nowadays. There's no reason to throw out something there's a healthy market for. People like to watch.
  • Why not 7-11? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by log1385 (1199377)
    I don't see what's wrong with buying video games at 7-11. It's just a vendor providing merchandise in a new context.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by cowscows (103644)
      Just another gamer nerd trying to pretend that his ultra cool and elitist hobby hasn't become a mainstream activity for bazillions of ordinary people.
  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Friday January 04, 2008 @06:59PM (#21916594)
    Game Delays are some times better then pushed out carp that is not ready and feels like it is still in Beta.

    If it means pushing people to work 80+ hours a week that just leads to buggy code then delay it so the game works and let QA / beta have time and alot of differnt systems to test on.
  • by FlyByPC (841016) on Friday January 04, 2008 @07:31PM (#21916726) Homepage
    Things in the gaming world I'd like to see a lot less of in 2008:

    • If-it-moves-shoot-it games. Portal was really cool. How about more innovative games like that?
    • Emphasis on online games. (Aren't geeks supposed to be antisocial?)
    • Handwriting-based mind games (this means you, Brain Age!)
    • Sports games.
    • Internet-required-to-play or disc-required-to-play security. Including Steam -- although the ability to download a game across the 'Net is very cool. What, are you trying to make us download a cracked copy??
    • Console-only games. I'd bet PCs are more popular than any one console...
    • [I'd like to see a lot less of] Emphasis on online games [and] Console-only games.

      On a PC, how do you do multiplayer without an Internet connection and without requiring the host of a party to buy multiple PCs? If you want to plug four gamepads into a machine to play a Bomberman or Smash Bros. style game, you need a monitor that's big enough to seat four people around, and in my experience, that means 25 inches diagonal or larger. But most PC owners, even owners of a PC whose video card has a TV output, do not connect their PCs to a television. This is why almost any party-style game fr

      • I'm betting he meant "multiplayer." I don't think that guy is alone in wanting to see more games with fulfilling single player content, even if it means taking a hit for having no multiplayer options. Take, for instance, STALKER--I don't think anyone would've cried much if the developers had spent their time implementing some of the features that they had to drop, rather than trying to cobble together and then support a workable multiplayer experience. Of course, single-player games don't make Microsoft mon
    • Your first concept would be nice except we still have issues of shit like companies patenting things in games, like camera controls, and other inane shit. Good luck on your first point until that crap gets cleared.

      Agreed with second point. I miss good single-player games, like STALKER. That was hella fun. And online RPGs suck. You're supposed to be in someone else's world, not a world filled with other annoying asshole 13 year olds that yell nothign but "gay" "fag" and other things.

      I don't know about the th
  • by LrdDimwit (1133419) on Friday January 04, 2008 @08:03PM (#21917080)
    Games get delayed for lots of reasons. Setting aside notoriously pathological cases like DNF, games get delayed often because the development needs more time. I for one would much rather wait, and get a better game in the end, than put up with shovelware.

    Take Zelda. The developers learned the hard way that hitting the release date was less important than finishing the game. The Wind Waker was in danger of missing its street date ... so they cut two dungeons that weren't going to be finished in time. Everyone involved now admits that was a big mistake, which led to Twilight Princess' very long incubation period. Just look at the results -- Twilight Princess knocks the socks off of Wind Waker, and many people feel it took the Zelda 64 formula and perfected it.

    Interesting tidbit: after Wind Waker turned out the way it did, the director of the game wanted to let the series end there. This is the guy Miyamoto handed the series off to after he didn't want to be forever tied to it anymore, and he wanted to throw in the towel! (I'd pull out a cite, but I gotta run.)

    Yeah. Delays suck. And when it's for a reason other than 'the game needs more time', they REALLY suck. But to just say 'there should never be a delay!' is to ignore the deeper reasons why delays happen, and that would be catastrophic.
    • by LingNoi (1066278)
      Even with those points there isn't a need for a delay. If your game is less then 90% done then don't go around screaming that it'll be out by X.

      The movie industry doesn't throw out a ton of advertising on a half finished film, but the games industry does this. I'm calling it naive.
  • by CelticWhisper (601755) <celticwhisper@gmail . c om> on Friday January 04, 2008 @08:19PM (#21917266)

    Save points.

    This absolutely retarded convention should have disappeared with the Genesis and SNES. Why is it, when I was playing Doom on my 486 back in 1994 and could save (and QUIT...you know... STOP PLAYING ) whenever I wanted, that I have to wait 20 minutes until I get to a magical spot blessed by the video game pope before I can save my game and turn off my Playstation 2 , a system that is orders of magnitude more powerful than the save-on-the-fly-capable PC on which I was fragging zombies?

    Attention developers:

    • Girlfriends happen
    • Friends happen
    • Dinner happens
    • Fatigue happens
    • Storms happen, at least in my region, and as a result...
    • Power outages happen
    • And frankly, me getting sick of playing during a given session happens

    And sometimes I want or need to stop playing on a moment's notice. I don't really want to leave the console on eating up power and running up my electric bill, and I also don't want to lose hours of gameplay (some JRPG dungeons do last that long) because you assholes thought it would be cute to not let me save my game and do something else. Your game is not the only thing in the world I want to do for fun, and moods can change, especially after long sessions. Furthermore, I know you can do save-anywhere because SaGa Frontier, LUNAR, and Persona 2 all did it on the PS1.

    Death to save points in 2008. Long live save-on-the-fly.

    • by springbox (853816)
      If you're restricted into saving less often then it can make games more interesting. Bioshock would have been less of a joke on hard if the ability to save and load at any point in time was removed. It has its problems but I think it's actually an interesting element of design.
      • Nobody is making you creep and save. If you want to play a more save-point oriented game, just do that. I'll do things like that for fun on a shooter that I'm really go at. I'll go for no saves except for on levels or when it autosaves. However, if I want to get up in the middle of something, I can still save right there.

        Having saves anywhere doesn't preclude the player from not using that, it just adds an additional option. If you want to creep and save, go ahead. If you don't, don't.
      • by grumbel (592662)
        For a tiny few games that might be the case, but for the majority I think a quick-save option is an absolute must-have. The reason for this is very simple: having to replay the same shit over and over again is just plain annoying and frustrating. I have ditched dozens of games exactly because of that, not because they were to hard, but because the lack of a free save game system forced me to replay the *easy* parts over and over and over again. Its not fun or challenging, it annoys and just plain stupid.

        I a
    • Why is it, when I was playing Doom on my 486 back in 1994 and could save (and QUIT...you know... STOP PLAYING ) whenever I wanted, that I have to wait 20 minutes until I get to a magical spot blessed by the video game pope before I can save my game and turn off my Playstation 2 , a system that is orders of magnitude more powerful than the save-on-the-fly-capable PC on which I was fragging zombies?

      Because your 1994 PC had a 300 MB hard drive, while the PlayStation 2 has an 8 MB flash memory card. In addition, as of 2008, games for Nintendo DS are still generally limited to a 256 KiB save file, though admittedly it's less of a problem because DS games have a robust sleep mode triggered by closing the lid.

      How about this compromise: The game continuously saves your progress, so that you never lose more than a minute of play. But you can't load a given state more than once, and when your character

    • by dr00g911 (531736)
      Crashes happen too, and I'm currently on a rampage against the "checkpoint for a false sense of save security but only allow you to save and quit instead of quicksave" thing that Halo loves.

      I replayed the last two hours of Halo 3 twice due to:

      - Jump the warthog into the Dawn, cutscene starts loading and "This disc is unreadable, please press A to restart your console"

      I mean seriously, how much trouble would it be to add a quicksave at checkpoints instead of making me restart the entire game each time I try
    • Save me! [dansdata.com]

      Caution though. Your question will seem more and more silly as you read on.
  • Not one of you has mentioned "DROP DRM" yet (Yes, I RTFA)

    Seriously. I hate having to insert a CD every time I want to play a game that has ALL of it's data installed on my hard drive.
  • ...androgynous japanime heroes with long hair, dapper clothes and swords the size of a small car?

    I'm looking at you Square/Enix

  • is necessary. Maybe not literally "next-gen", but the reality is that we have 2 different leagues of development: the wii and psp (also the "old PCs", and according to sony, the ps2), that are still viable platforms, are on one league, and the 360 and ps3 (and the top of the line PCs) are on another.

    This might not comply with the current marketing hype (sorry, the wii is not "next-gen"), but the fact is that some companies have to develp for the next-gen league, because they're too big and can't support the
  • by Bones3D_mac (324952) on Saturday January 05, 2008 @03:16AM (#21920146)
    Hmm...

    - Poor AI Coding -

    Considering this generation is supposed to be the one that renders further graphical improvements irrelevent, we should be seeing more attention paid toward improving core gaming elements, such as better NPC AIs. Even if you have to sacrifice some visual quality to do it, making a fun game should outweigh making a pretty game.

    - Locked, On-Disc Game Content -

    The whole idea of calling content that's been on the game disc since day one "downloadable" is extremely underhanded and motivated entirely by greed alone. I agreed to pay the additional $10 per game for the next gen experience you promised me. Don't turn around and ask me for more money to access the content I already own.

    - Proprietary Game Development -

    We're now in an age where many gamers are just as competent about the mechanics of a game as the game designers themselves. Instead of locking us out, let us in to create and distribute our own custom content to other users. The end user could well become the best source of innovation in an industry notorious for becoming too complacent with formulas that work, rather than experimenting with untested concepts.

    - Games Based On Past Wars -

    While we've seen some gems such as the Call of Duty series, the games themselves are becoming a blur with one another simply because the protagonist and antagonists are always the same, just with slightly different controls. Instead, why not create ficticious battles or introduce antichronistic advantages/disadvantages to each side. (For example, a small WWII axis forces army with late 20th/early 21st century weaponry vs the allied forces armed only with time correct weaponry and shear numbers.)

    - Tedious Game Clichés -

    Perhaps it's time we consider putting some game play styles to rest, such as party-themed mini-games (especially on the Wii) and the ever dreaded escort mission. Why should the user have to pay for lazy game development by enduring crap that only serves fill in the total game play hour odometer.

    - Franchise sharing -

    Ok, the whole Mario vs Sonic argument died the day Sega killed off the Dreamcast. After we get our fill of Super Smash Brothers Brawl, I do not want to hear any more on the subject... period.

    - Console Exclusivity -

    Mostly referring to 3rd party titles favoring one console over the others. Instead, stop asking us to choose and just make the game for the system I do own. The PS3 owners aren't going to rush out and buy a 360 over one game, and 360 owners aren't about to do the same for the PS3. If they don't already own one, they probably never will.

    - HD-DVD vs Blu-Ray -

    Given that the loss of Blu-Ray in the format wars would crush Sony under the PS3's weight, this battle is unlikely to die anytime soon. One side eventually needs to conceed or else both will lose out to a 3rd choice that is more easily adopted by the traditional DVD users out there. At the moment, HD-DVD edges out Blu-Ray in this respect due to the ease of creating hybrid DVD/HD-DVD discs for distribution in one box.

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