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Coming Soon, Shorter Video Games 637

Hugh Pickens writes "Blake Snow writes that according to one expert, 90% of players who start a game will never see the end of it and it's not just dull games that go unfinished. Only 10% of avid gamers completed last year's critically acclaimed Red Dead Redemption, according to Raptr, which tracks more than 23 million gaming sessions. 'What I've been told as a blanket expectation is that 90% of players who start your game will never see the end of it unless they watch a clip on YouTube,' says Keith Fuller, a longtime production contractor for Activision. The bottom line is people have less time to play games than they did before, they have more options than ever, and they're more inclined to play quick-hit multiplayer modes, even at the expense of 100-hour epics. 'They're lucky to find the time to beat a 10-hour game once or twice a month,' says Fuller of the average-age gamer. 'They don't feel cheated about shorter games and will just play a longer game for as many hours as their schedule allows before moving on to another title.' Even avid gamers are already warming to the idea of shorter games. 'Make a game worth my time and money, and I'll be happy,' says Casey Willis. 'After all, 10 hours of awesome is better than 20 hours of boring.'"
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Coming Soon, Shorter Video Games

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  • by jawtheshark ( 198669 ) * <slashdot@jawth e s hark.com> on Thursday August 18, 2011 @09:58AM (#37129050) Homepage Journal

    When I was a kid, I had time to master a game because I could play hours and hours, and hours. These days, I'm lucky if I get an hour of gaming a week and on bus/plane trips when I'm on vacation. So, take my last vacation: I advanced nicely on GTA Liberty Stories on my PSP (Yes, yeah, I know... ). I come home, go back to normal life. Would I pick it up again, I'd be stuck. Most of the story has been forgotten, the level of skill required is definitely not "in me" anymore and the only option I have is to restart the game.

    Which is what I do... Ever seeing the "end" of GTA. Never gonna happen.

    Sometimes, I just hit a hard wall within the game. I have Assassins Creed "Bloodlines" on the PSP. I played and now I'm simply stuck at a boss. I played for hours and hours, trying to beat that damned witch, but I can't. Back in my youth, I'd probably just have persevered, but now, I just put it aside. Haven't touched the game in a year, probably ever won't again as I'll have to start again and probably get stuck at the same "wall".

    This, to me, is the nature of gaming at a certain age. Yes, I'd rather finish the games too, but I don't think making them shorter is going to help. A dynamic adaptation to the skill level of the player would be much better for players like me.

  • by RenHoek ( 101570 ) on Thursday August 18, 2011 @10:07AM (#37129170) Homepage

    Mass Effect 2 had a lot of player statistics being collected:

    Recent statistics gathered by Mass Effect 2 snooping revealed that the Engineer is the class least played, whereas the Soldier seems to be the overall favorite. Roughly 50-percent of the people who started Mass Effect 2 actually finished the game, whereas apparently two PC gamers completed Mass Effect 2 twenty-eight times. 15-percent of the in-game dialogue was skipped as well.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Mass-Effect-2-Casey-hudson-Console,11248.html [tomshardware.com]

  • Disagree (Score:4, Informative)

    by Brad1138 ( 590148 ) <brad1138@yahoo.com> on Thursday August 18, 2011 @11:23AM (#37130318)
    I have to disagree as well. My favorite game of all time, Oblivion, is partially that because it basically never ends. I had 300+ hours into a character that I lost when my PS3 died. I am now starting a new one (as is the rest of my family) after seeing the Skyrim promo. I am having just as much fun this time around.

    I also liked Fallout 3, but was disappointed when I finished the main quest and it ended at about 80-100 hours of game play. I have been thinking about starting it again and not finishing the main quest till everything else is done, but it doesn't have quite the draw Oblivion does. Anyway, the answer isn't necessarily shorter, it is less dull/dragging.

All seems condemned in the long run to approximate a state akin to Gaussian noise. -- James Martin