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How To Make a Good Gaming Sequel 150

Kantor48 writes "In today's world of unimproved gaming sequels and saturated franchises, Arthur Kabrick looks at the best and worst sequels in recent history, and compares the changes they've made to the formulae of their franchises. By doing this, he comes up with a list of lessons that any game developer creating a sequel should follow, if at all possible, to ensure that the new game is a step up, rather than a step sideways or, as in some cases, a step down. The criteria include ensuring the game does not spend too much time in development, updating technology, and trying not to change the development team, as well as being wary of changing the basic formula so much that fans of the franchise are alienated."
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How To Make a Good Gaming Sequel

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 04, 2011 @03:11AM (#34751652)

    Thief 3 was a terrible sequel. In Thief 1 and 2 you were a thief, not a murderer. In order to succeed on the higher levels of play you had to not kill anyone. Thief 3 had no such limitation - you could happily murder anyone who got in your way (a la every other first-person game out there). It took the spirit of the originals and crushed it. Instead of 'Thief', it should have been called 'Brigand'.

  • Re:A better list (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bigstrat2003 ( 1058574 ) on Tuesday January 04, 2011 @03:43AM (#34751772)

    Your military has nothing to do with unhappiness in Civ V (notwithstanding that social policy that gives you +1 happiness for every city with a garrison). I honestly have no idea what you're talking about. It is true that if you overextend your military you can drive your economy into the ground for a while, but that is only reasonable (and you can recover from it). You shouldn't be able to build a massive, world-crushing force without a stable and sizable economy to support it.

    I've done plenty of warmongering in my games of Civ V without killing my empire, so I would venture to guess you're doing something wrong.

    I also completely disagree with your assessment of Civ V in general. While there are changes I'm not fond of (such as lack of culture flipping cities, or removal of religion and corporations), on the whole it is indeed a marked improvement over the previous entries in the series.

  • by Fallingcow ( 213461 ) on Tuesday January 04, 2011 @06:23AM (#34752256) Homepage

    Fallout 3 is like if a hardcore Oblivion fan/modder were told about Fallout 1 & 2 over lunch with a friend, then decided to make a Fallout total conversion for Oblivion without actually playing the first game--maybe just reading Wikipedia and watching the intro video on Youtube. Like Morrowind and Oblivion it's sorely lacking in actual role-playing, aside from a handful of good sidequests it's full poor writing and dull fetch quests, and its overall narrative structure is Bethesda-ish rather than Fallout-ish.

    I wouldn't say it sucks considered on its own and once heavily modded (it's mediocre pre-mods), but it jettisons so many of the core attributes of the Fallout games (while keeping much of the incidental shit) that it is a very poor entry in the series.

    Fallout: New Vegas, on the other hand, is excellent. It's 3D Fallout done right. Great Fallout-style breadcrumb trail of a main quest that leads you through one quest hub after another, damn near every side quest is interesting, stuff you do matters for the ending (how the hell Bethesda screwed that up in F3 I have no idea--it's a voiceover and some stills, FFS!), even the most mundane quest can turn out to be far more than it seemed or take a weird twist, skill specialization is more-or-less restored, etc.

    If you're a fan of Fallout 1 & 2, you'll probably like New Vegas. I'd say just skip F3--I doubt I'll ever play it again, as New Vegas is so much better, and far more to my liking as a Fallout fan. You say you don't like FPS games, and that might still turn you off as there is still a significant FPS element (obviously) but I would say it relies less on real-time combat and twitch shooting than even Mass Effect does unless you choose to play it as a pure FPS, so if you could stand ME then you can probably stomach New Vegas' combat.

Logic is a pretty flower that smells bad.