Beyond: Two Souls' focus is 'meaning, not fun', says David Cage

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#51 Posted by JackOhara (227 posts) -

The idea that "a game has to be fun or it isn't a game!!!" is simply false. To draw a parallel with films, No Country for Old Men isn't a "fun" film, but it is still incredibly thought provoking, gripping, and it will stay with you for a long time after you experience it. What matters is that it is entertainment. Some people aren't looking for interesting games, they just want to have fun, and that is perfectly OK, because sometimes I want fun games and other times I want interesting games. Does this make sense?

#52 Edited by Taborlin (177 posts) -

@Bourbon_Warrior said:

The only thing I ever liked in Heavy Rain is this hillarious glitch

Oh god that is hilarious, I'm in stitches ><

HAHA, When he's shooting him! Hahaha!

#53 Edited by mitsuko_souma2 (15 posts) -

I play games to relax and to have fun. If I want to watch a movie then I'll watch a movie and if I want to look at art I'll go to an art museum.

This gets two thumbs down from me.

#54 Edited by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

@Taborlin said:

@Bourbon_Warrior said:

The only thing I ever liked in Heavy Rain is this hillarious glitch

Oh god that is hilarious, I'm in stitches ><

Yep I love me some glitches and people say its hard to do comedy in games.

#55 Posted by Taborlin (177 posts) -

@Bourbon_Warrior:

Whaaaaaaaat? ><

Its front legs <3

#56 Posted by Jimbo (9815 posts) -
@TaliciaDragonsong said:
@Jimbo:  There's the beauty of a opinion however. In my opinion there's a divide between games and other interactive stuff (Dear Esther I believe is a good example of that) but to name them one and the same silly and outdated. We have diffferent names (or genres, if we go bigger) for movies and music as well, how you name a piece of media is often up to your own as you can call a documentary a film as much as you could the new Batman. They're all movies, and they're all games. But to divide them we have simple terms, like documentary, and I believe that should be implented in gaming as well to some degree.  Mind you, when someone says games I think of the interactive ones, the classic ones. Stuff like Heavy Rain and this upcoming title are not games in my book and while they may provide me with a great story, the gameplay element of it is severely lacking for me as I like games like The Witcher 2 where they combine stuff and don't make one at the expense of the other.
I agree, but the problem is that the catch-all terms 'movies' and 'films' inherently make sense as catch-all terms, where as 'games' doesn't, because -as you say- not all 'games' are games. Fixing it would require getting everybody to stop using 'games' as a catch-all term for everything from League of Legends to Katawa Shoujo, and start using 'interactie' (or equivalent) as the catch-all term, and then only using 'games' to refer to ones which are actually games. Unfortunately this will never happen, so we're stuck with it.
#57 Posted by mitsuko_souma2 (15 posts) -

@Taborlin said:

@Bourbon_Warrior said:

The only thing I ever liked in Heavy Rain is this hillarious glitch

Oh god that is hilarious, I'm in stitches ><

Oh man this is one of the funniest glitches I've ever seen.

#58 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@MrKlorox said:

@JazGalaxy: Let's be clear here. The reason fail states ever existed in the first place was to get another quarter out of you. Ideally fail states that stop you in your tracks should not even exist, except at the climactic ending (at which point it's no longer a failure and is instead a form of completion). The way to handle it would be to offer many other paths that progress the story along regardless of your decisions.

I am so incredibly sick of hearing that. It's one of those stupid "everybody says it so I'm going to say it to without ever once asking whether it makes sense or not".

Are you watching the olympic GAMES? Did Jordyn Weiber fail to qualify so someone could get more quarters out of her? Did Lebron James finally win the Championship he's wanted for years because he stopped by the laundro mat and stocked up before the big game?

Fail states are a complete and necessary aspect of GAMING, and have been there since the beginning of time. It's intrisic to the concept. Can you get this hoop over this bottle in THREE TRIES. if you don't, you LOSE. Got a bunch of people who can do it? Who can do it the fastest. Everyone else LOSES.

For people who actually like games, and this might be hard for you to understand, we actually LIKE losing. Or the potential to lose, anyhow. That's what's fun. Having to try harder. Think harder. Dig deeper. And, eventaully, to overcome.

#59 Edited by BrockNRolla (1702 posts) -

@mitsuko_souma2 said:

I play games to relax and to have fun. If I want to watch a movie then I'll watch a movie and if I want to look at art I'll go to an art museum.

This gets two thumbs down from me.

So...

Games = Fun and Relaxation, Movies = Movies, Art = Museums. Yeah, you've clearly thought a lot about this issue.

#60 Posted by GunslingerPanda (4759 posts) -

David Cage is a pretentious idiot who thinks far too highly of himself and his movies.

#61 Posted by MrKlorox (11209 posts) -
@JazGalaxy said:

@MrKlorox said:

@JazGalaxy: Let's be clear here. The reason fail states ever existed in the first place was to get another quarter out of you. Ideally fail states that stop you in your tracks should not even exist, except at the climactic ending (at which point it's no longer a failure and is instead a form of completion). The way to handle it would be to offer many other paths that progress the story along regardless of your decisions.

I am so incredibly sick of hearing that. It's one of those stupid "everybody says it so I'm going to say it to without ever once asking whether it makes sense or not".

Are you watching the olympic GAMES? Did Jordyn Weiber fail to qualify so someone could get more quarters out of her? Did Lebron James finally win the Championship he's wanted for years because he stopped by the laundro mat and stocked up before the big game?

Fail states are a complete and necessary aspect of GAMING, and have been there since the beginning of time. It's intrisic to the concept. Can you get this hoop over this bottle in THREE TRIES. if you don't, you LOSE. Got a bunch of people who can do it? Who can do it the fastest. Everyone else LOSES.

For people who actually like games, and this might be hard for you to understand, we actually LIKE losing. Or the potential to lose, anyhow. That's what's fun. Having to try harder. Think harder. Dig deeper. And, eventaully, to overcome.

Isn't there one small difference between the competitive Olympic games and singleplayer stories you're conveniently (perhaps obliviously) overlooking here? Now what was it...
 
Oh yeah it's COMPETITION you dolt. You're not even trying.
#62 Edited by mitsuko_souma2 (15 posts) -

@BrockNRolla said:

@mitsuko_souma2 said:

I play games to relax and to have fun. If I want to watch a movie then I'll watch a movie and if I want to look at art I'll go to an art museum.

This gets two thumbs down from me.

So...

Games = Fun and Relaxation, Movies = Movies, Art = Museums. Yeah, you've clearly thought a lot about this issue.

Thanks. It''s the internet, I felt compelled to get my meaningless hastily typed opinion out there.

#63 Posted by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

@Taborlin said:

@Bourbon_Warrior:

Whaaaaaaaat? ><

Its front legs <3

Haha yeah its a bug in RDR when the animal models get confused with the human characters and vice versa like the Donkey Woman...

#64 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@Jimbo said:

@JazGalaxy said:

@FluxWaveZ said:

@Jimbo said:

I agree with you, but at that point, referring to them as 'video games' is kinda misleading. A broader term would be more appropriate.

I've always thought the term "video game" was outdated. Don't know if "electronic entertainment" would be the thing, but I think something that conveys that the medium doesn't all have to be "games" would be more appropriate.

@TaliciaDragonsong: Okay...? Well, I agree with you there. Not sure what you were saying before, then.

Gross.

This is why I've been saying for a number of years that I think gaming needs to cell divide. I love games and hae played them all my life. I have a middling/passing interest in "interactive entertainment". I feel like a lot of gamers like me are being left in the cold by games constant need to cater to people who want very little actual game or challenge and instead want tons of story and movies.

The two concepts are, honestly, mutally exclusive. You can't have the pacing and nuance that a good "cinmatic experience" needs while simultaneously having good, well formed gameplay. It's a servant with two masters.

Gaming needs to remember what it was and be that. People who want interactive entertainment need to go off and do that in it's own industry.

Until that happens, we're going to keep getting games li ke Mass Effect 3 that say "do you want to play this as a videogame or as "interactive entertainment", and ultimately do niether as well as could be done.

What you're asking for is just an arbitrary division though. The same things would still get made. Whether we choose to refer to them 'video games' or 'interactive entertainment' (the former already falls under the latter anyway), or consider them seperate industries or two branches of the same thing, is largely irrelevant. Where I do disagree with you is the suggestion that the two concepts are mutually exclusive. I think it is absolutely possible to forge gameplay and narrative together and create something which resonates to become more than the sum of its parts, but it is incredibly hard to do and has rarely been done well (the more common approach being to just alternate between gameplay and narrative, which I don't really consider the same thing). I think we will see more of this in future, when people figure out how to do it well.

Maybe the same things would get made, you're right. But, I think that the problem with many modern games (and I say this as someone who doesn't like a lot of modern games) is that theyd o have a lack of focus. As a graphic designer and someone who studies design I say; we call videogame developers designers, but by the objective rules of design, many mdoern games are incredibly poor examples. TONS of game systems exist simply because "it's a videogame so it has to have x", rather than to serve any actual pupose.

I think there's very few games out there that aren't competing with themselves for focus. I mean, look at Jeff's commentary about Spec Ops: The Line for proof. He, and almost everyone else, kept commneting that the stock gameplay was, in actuality, a DETRIMENT. Not just because it was bad, but because it ran contrary to a lot of hte messages the game was trying to tell via it's story.

#65 Posted by Soffish (139 posts) -

I've never understood why people are so opposed to these types of games, If you don't like them...then just don't play them. I mean, If you're just looking for a "fun" game to play, there are quite a few to choose from.

#66 Posted by BrockNRolla (1702 posts) -

@falserelic said:

Isn't the point of a game is to have fun.

No.

Games can be many things to many people, just like books, movies, comics, paintings, plays, poems, interpretive dances, music, experimental shorts, cave drawings, and basically every kind of media ever created ever. If the creator wanted to make something fun, they can try to make something fun. If they want to move you emotionally, they can attempt to do that. No form of media is relegated to a single emotion or experience regardless of what a person might view as the typical experience.

#67 Posted by Taborlin (177 posts) -

@Bourbon_Warrior:

I remember that one! :D

God, I wish I still had RDR. I think I'll have to go watch that BenBuja's RDR stuff now :(

#68 Posted by BrockNRolla (1702 posts) -

@mitsuko_souma2 said:

@BrockNRolla said:

@mitsuko_souma2 said:

I play games to relax and to have fun. If I want to watch a movie then I'll watch a movie and if I want to look at art I'll go to an art museum.

This gets two thumbs down from me.

So...

Games = Fun and Relaxation, Movies = Movies, Art = Museums. Yeah, you've clearly thought a lot about this issue.

Thanks. It''s the internet, I felt compelled to get my meaningless hastily typed opinion out there.

Mission accomplished then.

#69 Posted by BrockNRolla (1702 posts) -

@Soffish said:

I've never understood why people are so opposed to these types of games, If you don't like them...then just don't play them. I mean, If you're just looking for a "fun" game to play, there are quite a few to choose from.

Nintendo practically bases their entire business model on exactly such experiences!

#70 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@MrKlorox said:

@JazGalaxy said:

@MrKlorox said:

@JazGalaxy: Let's be clear here. The reason fail states ever existed in the first place was to get another quarter out of you. Ideally fail states that stop you in your tracks should not even exist, except at the climactic ending (at which point it's no longer a failure and is instead a form of completion). The way to handle it would be to offer many other paths that progress the story along regardless of your decisions.

I am so incredibly sick of hearing that. It's one of those stupid "everybody says it so I'm going to say it to without ever once asking whether it makes sense or not".

Are you watching the olympic GAMES? Did Jordyn Weiber fail to qualify so someone could get more quarters out of her? Did Lebron James finally win the Championship he's wanted for years because he stopped by the laundro mat and stocked up before the big game?

Fail states are a complete and necessary aspect of GAMING, and have been there since the beginning of time. It's intrisic to the concept. Can you get this hoop over this bottle in THREE TRIES. if you don't, you LOSE. Got a bunch of people who can do it? Who can do it the fastest. Everyone else LOSES.

For people who actually like games, and this might be hard for you to understand, we actually LIKE losing. Or the potential to lose, anyhow. That's what's fun. Having to try harder. Think harder. Dig deeper. And, eventaully, to overcome.

Isn't there one small difference between the competitive Olympic games and singleplayer stories you're conveniently (perhaps obliviously) overlooking here? Now what was it... Oh yeah it's COMPETITION you dolt. You're not even trying.

It doesn't matter one iota how many people are taking part in a game for it to exist as a game. TO quote seymour skinner from the simpsons, "see how many envelopes you can lick in an hour and then try to beat that record".

You can make a game out of anything, anywhere and with any amount of people. The problem is, wiht your quoting "Single player stories" is that they are NOT GAMES.

Which is my point.

#71 Posted by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

@Taborlin said:

@Bourbon_Warrior:

I remember that one! :D

God, I wish I still had RDR. I think I'll have to go watch that BenBuja's RDR stuff now :(

Yeah my favourite game of all time and I traded it for 10 dollars off Black Ops, god I wish they would put it on PC.

#72 Posted by Taborlin (177 posts) -

@Bourbon_Warrior:

Yup, PC would be a treat.

I think I might have traded it in for Black Ops or something else completely pointless, too. ;(

#73 Posted by TaliciaDragonsong (8699 posts) -
@Jimbo: A shame, but a very understandable situation.
As long as people take moments to listen to each other and not blindly go mental on assumptions alone (something I see happening more and more everywhere around me sadly...) we should be fine.
#74 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@BrockNRolla said:

@falserelic said:

Isn't the point of a game is to have fun.

No.

Games can be many things to many people, just like books, movies, comics, paintings, plays, poems, interpretive dances, music, experimental shorts, cave drawings, and basically every kind of media ever created ever. If the creator wanted to make something fun, they can try to make something fun. If they want to move you emotionally, they can attempt to do that. No form of media is relegated to a single emotion or experience regardless of what a person might view as the typical experience.

I think this kind of postmodern crap is what is ruining conversations about gaming right now. Everyone seems to buy into this pop-art conversation that only an INCREDIBLY small number of actual trained artists buy into because they wre ones talking the loudest in the 60's and 70's.

Books, poems... these things have structure. THey have rules. There are things that ARE a poem and AREN't a poem. Yes, there are postmodern schools of thought that exist to destory any rules, but those are a subsection of a broader concept.

We use words and catagories to organize thought. IF "anything is art" than everything is art. And, by that same statement, nothing is art. Art, as we have come to know it, anyhow. People always want to say games are art so that they can associate games with the cultural significance that art has. But saying anything and everything is art robs art of that very cultural significance.

#75 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19347 posts) -

@JazGalaxy said:

@BrockNRolla said:

@falserelic said:

Isn't the point of a game is to have fun.

No.

Games can be many things to many people, just like books, movies, comics, paintings, plays, poems, interpretive dances, music, experimental shorts, cave drawings, and basically every kind of media ever created ever. If the creator wanted to make something fun, they can try to make something fun. If they want to move you emotionally, they can attempt to do that. No form of media is relegated to a single emotion or experience regardless of what a person might view as the typical experience.

I think this kind of postmodern crap is what is ruining conversations about gaming right now. Everyone seems to buy into this pop-art conversation that only an INCREDIBLY small number of actual trained artists buy into because they wre ones talking the loudest in the 60's and 70's.

Books, poems... these things have structure. THey have rules. There are things that ARE a poem and AREN't a poem. Yes, there are postmodern schools of thought that exist to destory any rules, but those are a subsection of a broader concept.

We use words and catagories to organize thought. IF "anything is art" than everything is art. And, by that same statement, nothing is art. Art, as we have come to know it, anyhow. People always want to say games are art so that they can associate games with the cultural significance that art has. But saying anything and everything is art robs art of that very cultural significance.

Why are you talking about "art" when the dude you're replying to didn't even mention the word?

#76 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

games can be many things to many people is a postmodern statement that launched me into that particular wide-ly held argument.

#77 Posted by Ramone (2967 posts) -

The impression I got from reading this thread is that a lot of people didn't actually play Heavy Rain but have instead formed their opinion based on reviews and other people's views. For the majority of the game, Heavy Rain's narrative was shaped by how well you played the game and the choices you made as a player. It wasn't the greatest story but the way it changed based on your success and failures was truly innovative and I welcome more games like it.

#78 Edited by FluxWaveZ (19347 posts) -

@JazGalaxy said:

games can be many things to many people is a postmodern statement[...]

Oh, so they can't? Video games can/should only serve a single defined purpose? Right... games like Beyond: Two Souls sure proves that point.

#79 Posted by Jimbo (9815 posts) -
@TaliciaDragonsong said:
@Jimbo: That is what I hope, that the games will keep evolving and that we end up playing the things we always wanted to play since we started gaming. Tthat projects like these branch out just to gain experience in the field of it and for another game they will return with that experience and hopefully offer the best of both worlds, eventually.   I want gaming to evolve but not heavily lean on switching between narrative and gameplay as you said, but to have actual actions in game and made during gameplay affect the story or events, not just picking option A, B or C changing some dialogue. Basically, you play the game and the game/story evolves around that, while nowadays we watch a cutscene, get pumped, hit some baddies, watch more cutscenes.
That is exactly how I feel about it. Gameplay and narrative are too often treated like two seperate entities which just happen to be packaged in the same box, whereas the true potential lies in removing the barrier between the two and having both gameplay and narrative free to impact on and resonate with each other. Gaming will never be able to do passive fiction better than the passive media can do it, but it does have the potential to achieve other meaningful things which cannot be achieved in passive media at all.
 
This is why I felt like the discussion about being able to skip gameplay sections / skip narrative was kinda missing the point. It shouldn't work like that. Ideally, that shouldn't even occur to the 'player', anymore than it would occur to a movie fan to watch a movie with the dialogue turned off.  Rather than coming up with negative solutions to negate what any given player considers to be the 'bad bits', the industry should concentrate on how they can aim higher and achieve higher, because there is still so much higher left to go.
#80 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

@TwoArmed said:

This sounds like what David Jaffe was talking about when it comes to stories in games. Don't make a game just to tell some story that you think is so amazing when it would be better served by/in some other format. But who knows, maybe it'll work out.

To be fair, Jaffe would probably use a lot more profanity than that but I think you've nailed it, message-wise and I'm inclined to agree.

#81 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@FluxWaveZ said:

@JazGalaxy said:

games can be many things to many people is a postmodern statement[...]

Oh, so they can't? Video games can/should only serve a single defined purpose? Right... games like Beyond: Two Souls sure proves that point.

...

O_o

that's exactly the debate taking place. Games like Beyond Two Sould DO prove that point, to those who see David Cages comments as being those of someone who's making something that isn't a game.

#82 Posted by MrKlorox (11209 posts) -
@JazGalaxy said:

You can make a game out of anything, anywhere and with any amount of people. The problem is, wiht your quoting "Single player stories" is that they are NOT GAMES.

Which is my point.

So clearly your issue is with the culture itself calling things without competition "games". You're finally on the page the rest of us are on. It's not David Cage you're mad at.
#83 Posted by Soffish (139 posts) -

Personally, I think arguing semantics is pointless and is a complete and utter waste of everybody's time. Arguing about whether or not a game is actually a "video game" does nothing but add artificial limits to a medium that many people would say is currently lacking diversity.

#84 Posted by FluxWaveZ (19347 posts) -

@JazGalaxy said:

@FluxWaveZ said:

Oh, so they can't? Video games can/should only serve a single defined purpose? Right... games like Beyond: Two Souls sure proves that point.

...

O_o

that's exactly the debate taking place. Games like Beyond Two Sould DO prove that point, to those who see David Cages comments as being those of someone who's making something that isn't a game.

I could be wrong, but I've only seen you arguing that something like Heavy Rain or Beyond: Two Souls shouldn't be considered a "video game". Which goes back to the semantic discussion that the medium as a whole shouldn't be anchored by the simple word "GAME" because that is no longer relevant in this day and age when looking at the medium.

#85 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@MrKlorox said:

@JazGalaxy said:

You can make a game out of anything, anywhere and with any amount of people. The problem is, wiht your quoting "Single player stories" is that they are NOT GAMES.

Which is my point.

So clearly your issue is with the culture itself calling things without competition "games". You're finally on the page the rest of us are on. It's not David Cage you're mad at.

That's hwat I've been saying all along. See my comment in my first post about gaming neededing to Cell divide from "interactive entertainment."

#86 Posted by ahgunsillyo (454 posts) -
@ImmortalSaiyan

I'm glad. Not all games need to be fun to be good.

I agree. I've played games and watched movies that I thought were good even though I didn't necessarily think we're fun to play or watch.

I can't really say I had fun playing through Heavy Rain, but I still thought it was a pretty great game. Then again, I wasn't really expecting it to be fun.

I'm really looking forward to Beyond: Two Souls, but that's because I'm intrigued by the premise and the production values. Plus, I like Ellen Page.
#87 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@FluxWaveZ said:

@JazGalaxy said:

@FluxWaveZ said:

Oh, so they can't? Video games can/should only serve a single defined purpose? Right... games like Beyond: Two Souls sure proves that point.

...

O_o

that's exactly the debate taking place. Games like Beyond Two Sould DO prove that point, to those who see David Cages comments as being those of someone who's making something that isn't a game.

I could be wrong, but I've only seen you arguing that something like Heavy Rain or Beyond: Two Souls shouldn't be considered a "video game". Which goes back to the semantic discussion that the medium as a whole shouldn't be anchored by the simple word "GAME" because that is no longer relevant in this day and age when looking at the medium.

That's exactly what I've been saying. Except where everyone else seems to be on the side that we should be embracing "interactive entertainment", I'm saying I want games. If we parted roads at the point where games and story go in different directions, I'd go off on the path that promised more Super Mario World or Doom. I couldn't care less about pretentious game designers trying agonizing over the nature of a tear.

#88 Posted by TaliciaDragonsong (8699 posts) -
@Jimbo:
Totally! I see gamers proclaiming we live in a golden age and that we have the best gamers ever.
But what we have is recurring series, as good/bad as the mass/core likes/hates them, just like sitcoms and whatever else is on tv nowadays.
I watch soaps, sure, but I don't get my panties in a twist over the possibilities of a story anymore, same goes for certain books and all too often games.
 
Potentials are rarely reached and when Mass Effect 3 came out I was convinced our only hope for a great story (and hopefully one day great gameplay when they started to get that down as well), Bioware, had seemingly lost its touch. 
Witcher 2, while still victim to a lot of very gamey and narrative elements does an amazing job of presenting the gamer a universe that's alive and aware but also offers a lot of choices to resolve situations or change the course of the game.
The way it was handled rekindled by hope in gaming, my dreams that one day the perfect game will be created (or at least the one that's so insanely good its criminal for it to exist), was a inspiration in both execution and support from the developers.
 
Small things can often create the best interactive stories and it was a small thing that made me realize Witcher 2 is my favorite game ever.
There's a sneaking section in a army camp, you can sneak past the guards or stun/knock em out if you so desire.
I snuck past most, avoiding the risk of bodies being found by patrols, but when I saw a guard taking a piss my feminism took over and I whacked him on the back of the hit in the middle of his leak.
Fun times! So I went on my sneaky way, went through a set of caves, stuff happened and then found myself back in the camp...where security had tightened because someone was found unconscious, thus making my escape that many times harder.
Its a small thing, but it registered such a choice I made during gameplay and had a logical (the timeframe is about right with him waking up from his nap with me returning to the camp to sneak back out) reason to happen and very visible consequences.
 
I really liked that part because I lived the game, I played, I acted, the game changed for me.
#89 Posted by MrKlorox (11209 posts) -
@JazGalaxy: No your first post was you shitting on David Cage for wanting to do his thing.
#90 Posted by JazGalaxy (1576 posts) -

@Soffish said:

Personally, I think arguing semantics is pointless and is a complete and utter waste of everybody's time. Arguing about whether or not a game is actually a "video game" does nothing but add artificial limits to a medium that many people would say is currently lacking diversity.

and that's just the problem and why definitions exist for things.There more freedom in defnitions than there is bondage. As the scope of games has increased over the past few decades, we've seen game review scores and satisfaction wtih games sink further and further down.

#91 Posted by Quarters (1710 posts) -

I've loved David Cage's games so far. Some of my favorites from the last several years. I don't think this will be any different.

#92 Posted by Jimbo (9815 posts) -
@JazGalaxy said:

Maybe the same things would get made, you're right. But, I think that the problem with many modern games (and I say this as someone who doesn't like a lot of modern games) is that theyd o have a lack of focus. As a graphic designer and someone who studies design I say; we call videogame developers designers, but by the objective rules of design, many mdoern games are incredibly poor examples. TONS of game systems exist simply because "it's a videogame so it has to have x", rather than to serve any actual pupose.

I think there's very few games out there that aren't competing with themselves for focus. I mean, look at Jeff's commentary about Spec Ops: The Line for proof. He, and almost everyone else, kept commneting that the stock gameplay was, in actuality, a DETRIMENT. Not just because it was bad, but because it ran contrary to a lot of hte messages the game was trying to tell via it's story.

The reality of the market is also competing for their focus. The reality is that there are like 3 or 4 stock game blueprints which have a decent chance of being commercially successful (at the high stakes end of the market), and very few companies that have the talent required  to stray from those and still be successful, or to create those blueprints in the first place.  As detrimental as shitty Gears knock-off gameplay might have been to the experience of Spec Ops: The Line (and that was exactly why I didn't buy it), the alternative almost certainly would have been detrimental to Spec Ops: The Bottom Line.
 
I agree that 'designer' seems very generous in a lot of cases - even 'developer' is pushing it.  Video game assemblers might be more accurate.
#93 Edited by FluxWaveZ (19347 posts) -

@JazGalaxy said:

@FluxWaveZ said:

I could be wrong, but I've only seen you arguing that something like Heavy Rain or Beyond: Two Souls shouldn't be considered a "video game". Which goes back to the semantic discussion that the medium as a whole shouldn't be anchored by the simple word "GAME" because that is no longer relevant in this day and age when looking at the medium.

That's exactly what I've been saying. Except where everyone else seems to be on the side that we should be embracing "interactive entertainment", I'm saying I want games. If we parted roads at the point where games and story go in different directions, I'd go off on the path that promised more Super Mario World or Doom. I couldn't care less about pretentious game designers trying agonizing over the nature of a tear.

And that's not my point. Like it or not, the medium's called "video games". "Video games" can come in many different forms, even when they stray away from "GAMES". Like people have been saying, like what I have on the second page, the very label for the medium is a misnomer because not all "video games" are the Super Mario Worlds or the Dooms that you enjoy. Seriously, deal with it: visual novels, Asura's Wraths and text based adventure games are VIDEO GAMES. If the only thing you're interested in are the games that are not emotionally moving, then fine. That doesn't matter because that's your preference, like anyone has. But I don't get why you need to cling so badly to the "game" part of "video games", so much so that you need to delve so much into semantics and separate the games that you don't deem worthy to be a part of the collective of "video games". Those games don't need to be put into a whole different category because, all in all, all of it is "interactive entertainment". Whether we're interacting with a pixel paddle in Pong or interacting with a human being in Heavy Rain, we are interacting. That is the essence of video games. That is why it is senseless to separate them into their own category when, in the modern era, video games have englobed so many different kinds of experiences.

#94 Posted by Soffish (139 posts) -

@JazGalaxy: Yep, clearly the problem with modern gaming is the huge amount of variety and originality.

#95 Posted by killacam (1284 posts) -

@JazGalaxy said:

If we parted roads at the point where games and story go in different directions, I'd go off on the path that promised more Super Mario World or Doom. I couldn't care less about pretentious game designers trying agonizing over the nature of a tear.

Because sadness is the only emotion, and naive hyperbole your only weapon. NOW we're playing games!

#96 Posted by BrockNRolla (1702 posts) -

@FluxWaveZ said:

@JazGalaxy said:

@BrockNRolla said:

@falserelic said:

Isn't the point of a game is to have fun.

No.

Games can be many things to many people, just like books, movies, comics, paintings, plays, poems, interpretive dances, music, experimental shorts, cave drawings, and basically every kind of media ever created ever. If the creator wanted to make something fun, they can try to make something fun. If they want to move you emotionally, they can attempt to do that. No form of media is relegated to a single emotion or experience regardless of what a person might view as the typical experience.

I think this kind of postmodern crap is what is ruining conversations about gaming right now. Everyone seems to buy into this pop-art conversation that only an INCREDIBLY small number of actual trained artists buy into because they wre ones talking the loudest in the 60's and 70's.

Books, poems... these things have structure. THey have rules. There are things that ARE a poem and AREN't a poem. Yes, there are postmodern schools of thought that exist to destory any rules, but those are a subsection of a broader concept.

We use words and catagories to organize thought. IF "anything is art" than everything is art. And, by that same statement, nothing is art. Art, as we have come to know it, anyhow. People always want to say games are art so that they can associate games with the cultural significance that art has. But saying anything and everything is art robs art of that very cultural significance.

Why are you talking about "art" when the dude you're replying to didn't even mention the word?

This is true. I never said anything about "art." That debate is different altogether. I am only saying that media can attempt to evoke whatever it chooses to evoke. It's success or failure in that endeavor is on the creator. An example; I don't assume all "comics" are equivalent or should be equivalent to Family Circus in the Saturday morning newspaper, because I'm well aware people can do other very intense and serious things with "comics" such as Watchmen. Both are equally valid, and claiming one is or is not a "comic" because it doesn't fit my narrow view of what a "comic" should be doesn't change the fact that they belong to the same medium. Whether or not either of those two things are "art" isn't relevant.

#97 Posted by FreakAche (2953 posts) -

Good, I hate fun.

#98 Posted by TheFreeMan (2712 posts) -

Doesn't have to be fun (lord knows that I've played my done my fair share of things in games that weren't "fun". hey eternal darkness), but as long as it's compelling, sure.

#99 Posted by NTM (7383 posts) -

With a few minutes of thinking, this really goes back to what a game is, and where it's heading. I think some developers, and/or people that work on game in general, like to think that these things they make aren't so much as "games" anymore, but an interactive experience. So when he says his intentions are not to make it fun, but interesting, it kind of goes hand in hand. Also, I disagree with his, we don't need next gen yet statement; sure it'd be great if there was more creativity, but I'd like to see it on next gen consoles now.

#100 Posted by ToTheNines (723 posts) -

Let the man have ambitions you sour cunts.

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