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Games Entertainment

On The Trendiest Concepts In Game Design 50

Thanks to the Guardian Gamesblog for its post discussing some of the 'trendiest' concepts currently infusing the world of videogames. The author notes: "Like every other entertainment sector, the videogame industry is prone to sudden fads and fashions that seem to spring out of nowhere, take the scene by storm, and then disappear only to be replaced by more advanced technologies, or better ideas, or something really silly", before pointing out trends such as 'sandbox gameplay' ("Sandbox is the new 'non-linear' - a favourite buzzword for open-ended game design... the dole office is full of unemployed end-of-level bosses") street racing games ("All the big driving genres - arcade, rally, F1 - have been done to death, so developers, already fascinated by crime and edgy urban themes, have turned to street racing"), and 'historical accuracy' ("Once the preserve of sad PC strategy titles, history has become a major videogame theme.")
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On The Trendiest Concepts In Game Design

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  • by FlimFlamboyant ( 804293 ) on Thursday August 19, 2004 @09:09PM (#10018867) Homepage
    That IS a disappointing list. When I opened it, I was half-expecting a list of trends in game design (which it *kinda* touches on in a couple of points). I wouldn't call "bump-mapping" a trend. I'd call first-person shooters a trend, if not a grossly worn-out one (IMHO). If you want to come up with a new trend, then please bring an original game concept to the table, not just a new way of making the same-old-same-old look better.

    But I guess games are like movies. Eventually all of the truly original concepts are used. Somewhere I read that there are only like 15-20 truly original movie plots, and that every movie is a derivative of one of them. So it goes with games as well, I suppose.
  • by MBCook ( 132727 ) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Thursday August 19, 2004 @09:18PM (#10018915) Homepage
    I agree. Physics isn't some cool feature someone invented, it's something that we can finally put in without it ruining performance. We've all noticed at one time or another in a game that the boxes on the wall don't move when shot at, or a person can walk across a telephone line without it bending or breaking. That's all wrong (in physics) and so you might notice it. Sure you could have put the physics engine from HL2 into the origional, but how many computers would have been able to play it at more than 2 fps when it was released?

    You're right, the list isn't much in the way of trends in gaming. You want a trend? Trying to make a game out of any sport with the word "extreme" attached to it. That's a trend (even if a sorry one).

God made the integers; all else is the work of Man. -- Kronecker